Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Thursday, April 23, 2009
One in eight.
That's an ugly statistic. That's a woman's chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer. My chance, your sister's chance, your mother's chance. Survival is more likely now than ever, but it's a miserable path - and an expensive one for many women.
Let's be real. Money makes the world go 'round - money for research, lobbyists, medicine, outreach. Where does that money come from? You and me.
So this year I'm doing a bit more than donating my own money. I'm running the Komen Race for the Cure here in Atlanta, and I'm asking for donations. I'm not a fan of "benevolent consumerism" - buying something pink is lovely and all, but I want my money to have the greatest impact. Susan G. Komen for the Cure is a four-star charity as rated by CharityNavigator.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
1) The Korean gluttony at Honey Pig
2) The wings at Jamal's Buffalo Wings
3) Freshly-fried churros at La Churreria
5) Pristine sushi and just plain awesome homestyle dishes at Sushi House Hayakawa
7) Weekend tacos at Chicago Supermarket
8) New York-style pizza at Verra-Zanno Pizzeria
10) The massive and delicious sandwiches at Muss and Turners
11) The fried green tomato BLT at Parish Market
12) The fruit cups, paletas and pressed sandwiches at Lottafrutta
13) A dirty martini and ground-to-order ribeye burger at Kevin Rathbun Steak
14) The fried pies at the Chick-fil-A Dwarf House
15) A hot dog and freshly made sweet onion rings at Barker's Red Hots
17) Chef Bruce Logue's La Pietra Cucina
18) The meat pies at Australian Bakery & Cafe
19) Anything with barbecue at Ming's
21) A big greasy cheesesteak at Roys' Cheesesteaks
22) Shabu Shabu at Nakato (been there but didn't do the shabu shabu)
24) The yakitori and ramen at Yakitori Jinbei
25) The dan-dan noodles and fish with tofu at Cafe 101
27) The classics at Canton Cooks
29) Afternoon tea at Park 75 Terrace and Lounge
30) Tlayudas, tacos and more at Taqueria Oaxaqueña
Monday, April 13, 2009
we saw milk (as should you, btw) at the artsy theater down the street, and their concession stand was nothing short of awesome. i mean, they had booze AND pocky. if you have never had pocky before, you have no idea what you're missing. it is crispy, crackery, chocolatey goodness, and because it comes from japan you can stuff your face while congratulating yourself on how very cultured you are in your choice of snack. as i was sipping my adult beverage and waiting for the movie to begin, i decided to read the pocky label to see what exactly made it so yummy. while trying to justify the amount of saturated fat that was about to go into my face (dark chocolate is GOOD for you! and pocky is made with WHOLE WHEAT flour!), i scanned the ingredient list and discovered pocky's dirty little secret. what on earth are the side effects? and who knew there was a seed for that? and does this mean i have to give up my pocky habit for good? i am so torn.
what i do know is this: those japanese chocolate cream-covered biscuit stick makers are not right in the head. see for yourself (hint: read lines 5 & 8):
Sunday, April 12, 2009
pink and shiny.
holy moly, this thing shoulda come with matching pink satin boxing shorts and robe. it made me want to bust out my wimpy little kickboxing gloves (more like glovelets, if that is even a word (it is now)) to go running down the street, punching at the air all rocky balboa-style in my matchy-matchy shiny pink boxing ensemble. get me some pink chucks, and i'll be all set. i would be so awesome.
oh yeah, one more thing: it works. it looks ridiculous, but it works. breathing is overrated.
Saturday, March 28, 2009
moving comfort fiona (aka title nine "three reasons") bra - nooooo. not tight at all around ribcage = bad things. and that's a 32 (the smallest band size to be found in sportsbraland)! it's too bulky to double up on, so this one is going back.
title nine frog bra - yes & no. it mashes, all right, but it still isn't tight enough around my ribcage. closer than the fiona, but that's not saying much. if i use it to double up, it is pretty awesome, so there's that. (but beware if you hate the chicken cutlets effect! nobody's looking at your pits, but if you have mental issues with that you have been warned.) the fabric is super stiff and scratchy, but S promises it will soften after a few washes.
title nine 2-in-1 full support wicking bra (pretty sure this is the moving comfort maia bra) - backordered. will let you know mid-april-ish. i have high hopes, but i was also hopeful about the first MC bra i ordered.
target champion cotton uniboob bra - no idea what possessed me to buy two of these (years ago), except that they matched a couple of my racerback workout tops. maybe it was a nostalgia thing? i used to wear bras like this in high school for basketball and track, and they worked just fine. but then, i was about a b-cup in high school and probably thought bouncing was cute. these are pretty much worthless except to cover up your ugly bra with one that matches your workout tank. yep, i'm that into the matchy-matchy sometimes.
i may try the moving comfort grace bra, but that depends on the fit of my second (backordered) MC bra. it *says* it's a 32, but unless my ribcage has magically shrunk (shrunken?) recently, i think their sizing is a bit off.
under armour shaper bra - the name makes me laugh because the shape this bra creates is "uniboob." not sure what i was thinking when i bought it because it's not very supportive (hence UA labeling it "mid-support"). it was probably on sale and i was probably desperate. mine is a pretty teal color, though, so perhaps i was once again blinded by cuteness.
the next bra headed my way is the supposed grand master: the cleverly named enell sports bra. this thing is a beast. if oprah can run in this sucker, so can i, dammit! i avoided it on title nine's site because a) it's ugly as hell b) they didn't have my size, and c) it ain't cheap. they called it the last resort bra. enell's site, however, has 10 different sizes, and they'll even do custom sizes. sweet. i'm going to close my eyes and pretend i'm not wearing something that looks like my great-grandma's bra fashioned out of duct tape. or maybe i'll just keep my eyes open and be glad i'm not bouncing all over the place. i have a hard time walking normally, so i'm pretty sure i'll bust my ass if i close my eyes while running down the gnarly brick sidewalks around here. (note: check rei for your size to save some dough. enell's shipping is crazy expensive and you can do rei store pickup for free.)
other (discontinued) bras in my arsenal:
i have another under armour bra that they're evidently not making anymore, and i love it. this is not the bra (although close), but you really should click the link to see the "pelvic shield" on the right of the page. scroll over said shield to see the link name. nice.
i have had a champion bra similar to this one for years, and it really was great before i washed it a zillion times. the body is all non-stretchy material, so it really didn't go anywhere when i moved. the band, however, was both stretchy and contained cotton, so that part has just deteriorated over time. i may try to replace it soon. in its heyday, i could even wear it by itself (under a shirt, that is), and that is a pretty big deal around here.
my favorite bras to layer are actually a c9 by champion (target) double-layer bra that they don't make anymore and an adidas masher bra kind of like this one. the old-school, racerback, uniboob style is easy to double up, doesn't have any uncomfortable hooks in the back to bother me while i'm doing ab work, and squishes me to almost-normal-looking proportions. oh, and no bounce. by themselves, eh. together, magic. i also have a cotton hanes bra with all the same qualities, but i'm not as big a fan of cotton due to the sweat factor. synthetics are the way to go for wicking cuz sweat retaining bra = added grossness.
so that's my long, weird post about sports bras. good blogs focus on one subject with an intensity and passion, and mine is obviously all over the board (much like my thought process). maybe i should have a sports bra blog instead? thrilling, i know.
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
we swam at the surface of the ocean voyager tank with the four ginormous whale sharks -- yushan, taroko, trixie, and alice -- swimming just below us the whole time. even nandi the manta ray (the only manta ray in an aquarium in the US) came up to pay us a visit a couple of times.
of course, we weren't allowed to touch any of the fish (or mammals), so when one of the divemasters saw a visitor approaching, he would signal us all to flatten out and float with our hand straight ahead. naturally, i like everyone to think i'm cool as a cucumber, so the first time our divemaster did this, i didn't think much of it. and then this MASSIVE creature appeared just a few inches below me and proceeded to swim on through. it was completely indescribable, although if i made an attempt, the description would include the word "hyperventilating." you can't tell, but that's what's going on at about the 2:19 mark in the video below (i'm on the right). meanwhile, matt got bumped by not one but two of the whale sharks' tails during our swim. pretty funny. you can see the camera lady get clocked at about the 5:38 mark.
i sprung for the cheesetastic video they recorded while we were swimming (and some of the shenanagins pre-swim), and the huz converted it for your viewing pleasure. no making fun of how we look in the wetsuits, kids. evidently the bikini with the ruffles was not the best choice.
Saturday, March 7, 2009
The BBQ Song - Funny bloopers R us
one more thing: just in case you've ever uttered the phrase "carolina-style barbecue," here's yet another reference guide to set you straight:
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Monday, December 8, 2008
what do iowa, pie, raid, teflon, dextrose, rei, cobra, chlorine, sow, vatican, lebaron, nx, and neri-heka-aset-re have in common?
except the 46 (forty-six!) named tequila. they'll be curled up in the doorway, uh, taking a nap.
Saturday, December 6, 2008
1. acc coach of the year, paul johnson.
2. acc player of the year, jonathan dwyer. (and only a sophomore, too. watch out!)
3. all-american defensive end, michael johnson.
4. they're no dummies, either.
5. a nice, sound stomping of the most-penalized, possibly most-arrested team in college football, the georgia bulldogs. oh, they were ranked #1 in the preseason, btw. (i particularly love this article.)
bonus: see title.
Friday, December 5, 2008
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Monday, November 3, 2008
my personal favorite: ben & jerry's. if free ice cream is not reason enough for you right there, i don't even know why you're reading this because we obviously have nothing in common.
second place for all you caffeine fiends: starbucks. they're a bit cheaper than our pals from vermont, and they're only giving away about $1.50 worth of free-ness, but they're going to keep it up all day. many would argue that a free cup of caffeinated water should be number one on this list, but there is really no better free shit than free ice cream. period.
and what better to go with that coffee than a nice, healthy, krispy kreme doughnut? yes, you can get the best doughnut on the planet (again, do not try to argue with me; i am a wee bit opinionated on my junk food preferences) for free with your lovely peach sticker. and it's even cute.
no health food kick is complete without fried things, so shane's rib shack is giving away just that. it's not on their site, but i did read about it in a relatively reputable publication: shane's is giving you a free chicken tender meal, complete with fries and a drink. i recommend fully-leaded coke classic, unless your location serves jolt. if you're going to partake in everything on this list, don't even think about letting a diet coke or, god forbid, caffeine-free diet coke, ruin your streak of healthlessness. sweet tea is acceptable. (this being an atlanta-based blog, we won't even talk about non-coke products. pepsi is sacrilege.)
and if your conscience starts to get to you because, oh, i dunno, you're doing three weeks of boot camp complete with a strict diet where you aren't supposed to be eating any of this crap, i have a great place for you to get some exercise: the zoo! no, it's not free, but you get 1/2 off your admission if you're wearing that handy dandy sticker. what, you think the one healthy thing on this list would be free? sooooo not the way my world works.
there are plenty of other freebies outside of atlanta, including piercings in missouri, tattoo removal in dallas, a vibrator of your choice in new york (no lie)... but we know i'm all about the food. plus, i'm too lazy to post it all here, so just google it. i'm so helpful, no?
now get off yer ass and GO VOTE!
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Jamie Mellars is the coxswain for the Georgia State University rowing crew. The group practice sessions are held on the Chattahoochee river well before sunrise. Their motto is, "Row Steady State".
another version with appropriate early-am pic (but still the same arms-only boat clip) and a bonus link at the end:
Many of the rowing crews, such as Georgia State University and Georgia Tech use and compete on the Chattahoochee River. This kind of competitive rowing has roots that go back to 1430 BC. Records show that the Egyptian warrior Amenophis II was renowned for his feats of oarsmanship. And the benefits of the sport are not just limited to exercise, but can have parallels in how to live a successful life.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Sunday, September 28, 2008
the edisto has been pretty low this year, and i was pretty disappointed that we weren't able to tube down the river in july. in my opinion, if there's enough water to float a cooler, there's enough water to float my butt.
yes, the cooler is an integral part of floating. you fill a cooler with as much beer, winecoolers, and whatever other nastiness you can get your underaged hands on, wrap a tire tube around it, blow it up, and throw it in the river. tie a string to the cooler and attach it the the wrist of the biggest lush in the group, and you're good to go.
you also need to make sure you have a couple of extra tubes for the inevitable flat at some point. and if you only have one extra tube, one person gets a flat, and you find the cooler's tube is also in danger, well... somebody had better be comfortable swimming.
the weather was beautiful today, and it was the perfect kind of day to sit on the dock and watch the water. but i always lament the end of summer. (okay, i rejoiced when each of my four summers in arizona came to and end, but that's a different story.) i like to play outside, soak up the sun, and find any excuse to be in some kind of water.
the only consolation to the end of summer?
how 'bout them dawgs?
Sunday, July 27, 2008
a few months ago (around christmas maybe? definitely before boot camp -- see food choice for proof), i was driving back to atlanta from the parents' in south cackylacky. my mom always tries to shove food down my throat as i'm leaving, but i always say no since the whole production of going through the refrigerator to list any and all of the selections, picking something, preparing it, finding other side items to go along with it, and actually sitting down to do the eating would result in my getting on the road around midnight -- no matter what time the whole process began. it's about a 3-hour drive, so on this particular night i started feeling the hunger pangs around the state line, and my little head could focus on NOTHING else besides a mcdonald's filet-o-fish by the time i reached washington road in augusta.
not being all that familiar with the area, i missed the turn and ended up taking a left just a few feet past a traffic light, at a rather nasty little intersection. this truck pulled up RIGHT behind me and stared honking its horn. okay, i thought -- i'll pull up a little so he can go around me. the truck pulled up with me, millimeters from my bumper, and continued to sit on his horn.
now here is where an important lesson comes in: NOBODY gets between me and food. when that blood sugar dips, i am a nasty person to be around, and most people around me know to just administer the IV of fully-leaded, original recipe coca-cola straight to my veins, and soon i will return to human form. straw polls i've taken through the years tell me i'm not the only one like this, and most humans of the female persuasion have similar reactions to low blood sugar crises. dude in the truck did not get that memo.
i wanted to turn into that damned mcdonald's just as badly as truck man did, believe you me. the shining beacon of all things fried and unholy was gleaming just to my left, just taunting me, as all of these stupid cars just kept on coming. and dude just sat on his horn, attached to my little VW bumper. so i did what would be expected of me in this crisis: i turned around, looked straight at him, extended my arm as far as it would go -- with one finger held skyward -- and loudly enunciated, "FUCK. YOU."
and then i turned in to the mcdonald's. everything was going to be all right.
so i gave my order (mmmmmm filet-o-fish and coke), paid at the first window, and looked up to proceed to the manna-distribution window. and there he was. this beat-up, piece o'crap old blue chevy truck, right next to my car. with a nasty, 50's-ish redneck, mesh hat, chewing tobacco, nasty teeth and all, leaning out of the window, STARING at me.
i moved up a little, thinking he'd go away. he moved up right alongside. i kind of sat there between the two windows, dumbfounded. if you can stun me enough that i'm not even going to go get my food, you've really gotten me. redneck dude leaned out of his window, extended that same finger i had shown him earlier, and drawled, "NAW, FUUUUCK YEEEEW!"
he drove away, i proceeded to the food window, and the highschool girl holding my filet-o-fish bag at the checkout was pretty freaked out. she wordlessly handed me the bag, eyes wide, surely wondering what i had done to warrant such a display. i mustered a comment to assure her i'm not as big an a-hole as dude, took the bag in my shaking hands and drove away. i took a sip of my coke, felt my humanity return a little, and figured i should get out of there asap.
i went around to the stoplight (where i now know i should have turned earlier), and who was in front of me but that damned blue truck. so i called M's cell and shakily left the following message: "uh, if i don't make it home tonight, write down this license plate number...". (not even thinking, of course, that that is probably NOT the message that one's fiance wants to hear on his voicemail, but i digress....)
when i looked over and saw that the truck had a bumper sticker. a bumper sticker with a pair of prayer hands that says, "Pray the Rosary."
actually, i think i was over all shock by this point. so i rolled down my window, put my little prayer hands out, and started yelling over and over, "PRAY THE ROSARY! YOU PRAY THAT ROSARY!!!"
like you didn't know i'm going to hell.
i called my friend K, the super-devout catholic with the sick sense of humor, to tell her the story, but that call went to voicemail, too. when she called back later that night, i found out why her phone was off: she was at mass. praying the rosary.
Sunday, July 20, 2008
i just deleted about a bazillion spam messages from my email, and some of the titles were just spectacular. i copied a few down for your reading pleasure:
- britney in coma, feared dead
- you are about to get fired [would have freaked the hell out of me 5 yrs ago]
- fill in your life with colors of fun!
- shopping queen loves to party
- michael jackson gives up being a pedophile
- bulgarian diplomat arrested with 0.4kg of plutonium
- oprah winfrey breaks leg in horror crash
- what a stupid face you have there misskelley [personal favorite]
- misskelley is a moron
- you look really stupid misskelley
- slap-up products of fashion
- cling on to budget bling blings
- natural fertilizer for your cucumber
- with such big bolt even statue of liberty will be satisfied!
- flawless narcotic offerings
- i videotaped my mom while she was masturbating [most disturbing of all]
nice, huh? don't those links just screeeeeeam, "click me"?!? i think i'm going to be a spammer when i grow up.
Monday, June 16, 2008
my dad lives down a mile-long dirt road he refers to as his driveway. his house is on a river, so close that the porch overhangs the water, and it's surrounded by a little inlet on the other three sides. so basically he lives on a secluded island. if bad things happen that far out in the boonies, you're pretty much screwed, and we all know people who have harrowing stories to back up that point. (mine involves a diving board, lots of blood, mom driving REALLY fast to the hospital 25 miles away, and staples in my 12-year-old scalp.)
way out in BFE, as it's affectionately known, you get accustomed to wildlife being all around you, but there are some things i never, ever got used to. my three least favorite things on the planet earth: snakes, spiders, and shots. shots for when you step on the inevitable nail (i've always loved going barefoot) or bust your head open and need some novocaine. spiders in the woods and sometimes in your house. and snakes near lakes, rivers, fields, and pretty much any other landform surrounding either of my parents' houses. i am scared shitless of snakes. shots invariably contribute to my overall well-being in the long run and are quickly over with in the short run. spiders i can smush (albeit with closed-toe shoes only). snakes, i can do nothing about. i can't even look at them or think about them without making guttural noises of fear, disgust and utter loathing. ugh. no good can come of a snake.
last weekend, my dad and i were discussing the merits of nonpoisonous vs. poisonous snakes. or, he was discussing their merits, and my stepmom and i were proclaiming the need for ALL snakes to DIE. dad's point was that nonpoisonous snakes tend to be quite territorial (according to my bio-major brother), and they keep the poisonous snakes out of his yard. no matter, says tough girl here. if i see one, i'm just gonna KILL IT. yep.
so here i am a weekend later, back at my dad's. we were all over the county visiting friends and family, and i let him use up the gas in his car while my VW and its premium-fueled gas tank sat under his carport for a couple of days. sunday afternoon i said goodbye to dad and headed down the long dirt road to my mom's. i got about 1/4 mile away, past all of the neighbors, and a little lizard peeked over the edge of the windshield on the passenger side. you know how you can sometimes have about a million thoughts in about half a second? here's how mine went:
"hey look, a little lizard. how cute. what's he doing up on my windshield? i hope he doesn't fall off and get smushed. i wonder if i should stop and get him off of there. [lizard gets a bit more bold and comes further onto the windshield.] hmmm, he's got a really long neck. THAT'S NOT A LIZARD. [insert a shocked-as-shit, mind-numbing, gut-wrenching, soul shaking, pants-peeing, shriek of scared-to-death here.]"
no words, no "holy shit." just "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!" at its loudest, wake-the-dead, if-my-windows-were-down-you-could-have-heard-it-in-georgia SHRIEK.
i have never executed a faster, tighter three-point turn in my life. i speed-dialed my dad (from 1/4 mile away): "I AM ON MY WAY BACK TO YOUR HOUSE GOING VERY FAST AND YOU NEED TO BE OUTSIDE WHEN I GET THERE BECAUSE THERE IS A SNAKE ON MY CAR AND YOU NEED TO GET IT OFF!" [imagine clipped-off words streaming out of my mouth in top-of-my-lungs, rapid succession. i mean, super-loud -- even by my standards. every sentence for the next 10 minutes sounded just like that.]
needless to say, i HAULED ASS back to the house, turned off the car, jumped out, slammed the door, ran 20 feet away from it, jumping up and down, screaming, "THERE'S A SNAAAAAAAAKE ON MY CAAAAAAR! A SNAKE! A FRICKIN SNAKE! THERER'SASNAKEONMYCAR!!!!!!" not sure if it really qualified as yelling; i think it was more like a high-pitched, ear-splitting girlie scream. jumping around, stomping, shuddering, and general ridiculousness accompanied all of this noise.
dad had not made it out of the house yet, but the neighbors were in their yard, laughing their asses off. "YOU EITHER NEED TO STOP LAUGHING OR GET OVER HERE AND GET THIS SNAKE YOURSELF! THERE IS A SNAKE ON MY CAR!"
neighbor lady's response? "i've never seen a car fly over that bridge so fast in my life. i thought you must have had to use the bathroom really bad."
she was half right: it really is a wonder i didn't wet my pants.
so dad ambles out of the house, trying (not very hard) not to laugh at me. "i don't see a snake, kelley. oh, well." snicker.
"HE'S STIIIIILLLL THERE! FIND HIM!!! I WAS DRIVING TOO FREAKIN FAST FOR HIM TO'VE JUMPED OFF!"
"how am i supposed to get a snake i can't find?"
"IF YOU DON'T FIND HIM, YOU ARE DRIVIN ME BACK TO ATLANTA 'CUZ I AM NOT GETTING BACK IN THAT CAR!"
"fine. pop the hood."
so, the lovely folks at the VW dealership have been telling me i need to get the hydraulic hood-holder-upper-thingie fixed, but i've been remiss to spend the $150. i never went up under the hood. that was their problem -- sorry for ya. this had now come back to bite me in the ass. so to speak.
"you need to come hold this hood up for me."
uh, i had no intention of getting within 10 feet of that car right then.
but the snake had. to. go.
i stood as far away from the last place i saw that little green head, holding my arm as far outstretched as i could, realizing i should have spent that $150 last month. plus, that hood was heavy.
and there he is.
curled up under the hood, just below the windshield on the passenger side, was a looooong, skinny, black snake.
dad found the back end of a broom or hoe or rake or oar or something and tried to flip the thing out of the car. it didn't work: he flopped back on the car and slithered away. TOWARDS ME.
this is the point at which my father almost lost his arm, but he acted fast enough for me to not drop the hood on him. little snake dude didn't realize that uncoiling himself just made him easier to snag. try number two was swift and accurate, and dad had the perpetrator up in the air, flying toward the river in no time.
i let the hood drop and jumped up and down, stomping my feet all over the yard, screaming utterances of disgust.
i thanked dad, wished him a happy father's day (he had more than earned that $4 card, buddy), made an ugly face at the neighbors who were still laughing, and drove on to mom's. every now and then i would check the floorboards to make sure i was alone, as i kept picturing mr. snake finding his way through the air vents and into the car. once i got on the highway, i turned on the cruise control and drove with my feet in the seat.
when i told everyone at mom's what had just happened (explaining why i was shaking and wide-eyed: no, i'm not on meth; i just look like it), my brother-in-law asked what kind of snake it was.
"what kind of snake?
"a FUCKING SNAKE!!!!!"
seriously, is there any other kind? sheesh.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
i'm too in shock to think of witty commentary, either.
seriously, how appropriate is it that the woman's name is jaymes?
although please note: "artificial insemination" does not necessarily a couple indicate, people! (further proof: " 'they have been good friends for a long time'." "friends.")
[somewhat unrelated: there is nothing on tv and for some reason i'm watching so you think you can dance. and there's a chick doing rythmic gymnastics to YANNI. please don't ask me how i knew that.]
Saturday, May 17, 2008
Monday, May 12, 2008
i was on the upswing of the trend back in the 80's when i got my first pair of rollerblades. my town didn't exactly have a skate park or even well-paved roads, so i could really only skate around on an outdoor basketball court down the street. i knew a girl in college who rollerbladed everywhere, and she eventually convinced me to try my old-school wheels on the mean streets of north avenue -- to somewhat negative results. i have no idea where those skates are now, and even less a clue as to why i decided i would be more successful with new ones over ten years later. let's just say i am a sucker who can be talked into anything.
i've owned this pair for exactly 6 years, and i haven't actually put them on my feet for about 5. i bought them about the same time as my bike, both of which i purchased right after breaking my arm in a freak snowboarding accident. and by "freak" i mean i tried to snowboard and was quickly reminded that i have zero coordination or athletic prowess. so i immediately went out and bought more sporting equipment, duh.
anyway, last monday was a beautiful day and i decided to take advantage of it. once every four or five years, we have an amazing spring here in atlanta. usually it goes from freezing cold (okay, 40's/50's or 60's + raining) to hot hot hot (90's), like, in two days. this year, we have had a bunch of awesome days with temps in the 70's and so sunny that you would be nutzo to stay inside. i spent most of last sunday inside for various (not sucky) reasons and spent all of the next day trying to stop thinking about playing outside.
which led to thoughts of rollerblading.
i'm sure these thoughts were also brought on by my visit to the green(ish) belt on the recent trip, as that was the site where my skates first hit pavement. and, as i mentioned earlier, i tend to see my past with rose colored glasses, so i couldn't stop thinking about how fun and easy and non-life-threatening rollerblading was. hell, if i tried really hard, i could probably remember myself as a kick-ass snowboarder, too, but i have plenty of pictures with me in a cast backing up the contrary there.
and my dad. easter dinner, 2002, with the whole big extended family gathered around the table. i'm in a purple cast. here's how the conversation went:
- dad: A [my older sister] was such a gifted athlete growing up, but she never really cared for sports that much. kelley, on the other hand, tried every sport she could. she tried and tried, but she really never had any athletic talent, whatsoever.
- me: WAIT! i wasn't that bad!
- dad: kelley, you're 30 years old. you'd think you would have accepted the truth by now.
- me: i'm twenty-four!
- dad: eh, close enough. you might as well start rounding.
i think he meant for that conversation to be funny. i was traumatized. still am.
anywho, i have had an athletic bug up my bum for the last couple of weeks. last week it was rollerblading. i dug my skates out of the bottom of the closet, wiped off some dust, and hopped in the car to drive to piedmont park, where i knew there were at least no cars to run over me when/if i veered out of control. i didn't remember how much my skates resembled ski boots. (incidentally, i had decided to try snowboarding on that fateful trip because i suck so badly at skiing.) bad memories crept in, but i had confidence. i strapped those suckers on so tightly there was no way i'd break an ankle. sweet -- one body part taken care of at least.
i headed down charles allen dr., quickly realizing i have NO IDEA what i'm doing. and people can tell. after hitting a couple of huuuuge crevasses in the sidewalk (okay maybe i'm exaggerating) and watching people trying not to giggle as i wobbled all over the place, i remembered why i bought the whole kit of elbow, knee, and wrist guards when i got these suckers. too bad i didn't put them on today. bad idea. baaaaaad idea.
the best looks i got were when i was waiting for the light at 10th to turn green. wobbly chick on narrow strip of rolly wheels, trying not to fall over and/or roll on into traffic, hanging onto a pole for dear life. oh yes, this was a low point.
but i am indestructible (and delusional), so i did not once think of turning back. nope, as soon as that red hand went away, i teetered across the street. only to find an even crackier [is that a word? it is now] sidewalk, covered by little twigs, on an incline, on the other side. greeeeeeaaaaat. at least there were fewer witnesses here.
i headed to the lower loop, the meadow (where screen on the green usually is), since it's smaller, rounder, and basically less scary. plus there were fewer downhills, and i had determined in the first 30 seconds that i was pret-ty rusty on the braking. as in, i couldn't even remember where they were at first. wobbly girl with bare limbs and no speed control. hey, no worries -- i have plenty of grass around to slow me down! yeah, my judgement isn't questionable at all.
but that's okay because i have my trusty ipod and i can tune out all the soccer players, bike riders, joggers, walkers, and bocce ball players who are surely talking about me. i'm not paranoid or anything at this point. too bad the blaring ipod means i can't hear those damned bike riders coming up behind me. yet another obstacle. one old man kept giving me the look of death when i got near his grandkid on his little bike, but dude needs to teach that kid how to get out of the way. i have very little control here, people! on a river, the least maneuverable boat has the right-of-way. that would be me today! the kid decided to park himself horizontally across a bridge on my last loop, but lucky for him i'm a fast learner and an excellent swerver (take that as you please). if grampa won't teach him a lesson, i will. i'm an excellent educator.
in all, i completed four loops (over a mile) before the sun got too low for me to see all the little sticks in my path. turns out sidewalk cracks and bike riders are pretty predictable; it's the flotsam and jetsam that will really eff you up. noooot a good feeling.
but guess what? i didn't fall! not once! did i look like an asshole trying to resurrect a 20-year-old fad? probably. did i take advantage of a beautiful day, get some good exercise, and feel better about myself in the end? definitely. we'll see if that trend continues or if those wheels collect dust for another four years.
i'm gunning for the former. in the last week, i've rollerbladed, gone for a super-long walk with R, spent a whole day painting a house for homeaid atlanta (if you don't think that's exercise, tell my muscles), played 18 holes of golf (yep, me), and spent some quality time in the yard with the fredmonster. not sure what the hell has gotten into me, but this being active stuff doesn't really suck!
the bike (neglected just as long as the skates) is in the shop and will be ready to ride next week. any bets on how many times it'll see the light of day this year? i guess it depends on how long this freakish spring lasts.... bring it on. :)
Tuesday, May 6, 2008
Wednesday, April 30, 2008
i kept a little ongoing diary/blog/list of boring thoughts during my hawaii trip. enjoy....
pregame: i need a tan. i spent four years as the whitest girl in arizona, and i know that i have the power to blind people. i've never met most of the people we're going to be with in hawaii, so i decided that blinding them may not be the best way to make friends. spa sydell has a great spray-tan (of the airbrush variety), and i've done it before. it definitely takes my pigmentation beyond what you might call "natural," but whatever. we're talking hawaii, people.
i also got my hair ("hur") did earlier this week, and it's a bit blonder than i'd like. again, i usually like to stick with the natural look, but this time it was a little more than that. and frizzy. i took it down from my ubiquitous bun saturday night after the tan had set in, and this is what i saw in the mirror:
oh, well! these people don't know me! maybe they'll think i'm just naturally this bronzed. in the airport i convince myself that people are staring because they're jealous. yep.
first stop, sixteen hours in arizona. priority #1: in-n-out burger. priority #2: shopping. what else is there in phoenix?
we got up before the crack of dawn sunday and headed for the airport. all i wanted was starbucks, which i gave up last month "for lent," hoping it would help me kick the habit completely. didn't work.
i have a craving, but no time. marta; airport; bag check; security; "careful, these doors are closing and will not re-open: please wait for the next train"; finally, starbucks. ahhhhh. grande soy chai latte. the shakes subside.
people watching, plane hopping, buy-on-board food. $7 for a crappy chicken sammich and a tiny bag of chips to split. the other choice was tuna in a can. what? who the hell wants to smell (much less eat) canned tuna on a plane?? ewww. i miss being in the special people section.
welcome to phx.
pick up my kick-ass chevy aveo [note to enterprise peeps: don't sell a salesperson. i don't *care* that my rental has no power. i'm paying all of $26, and i'm saving on gas. no, I don't want your insurance, either. really. i promise. no, seriously. seriously. enough! thank you. :) ]
find hotel, check in, boogie over to in-n-out. cheeseburger, animal style, copious amounts of coke (aka nectar from heaven) and the best fries around. this made it all worthwhile. yum. happy now.
drove to the greenbelt to show the huz grass in the desert. i took off my shoes to walk in the grass and stepped on the...
sharp, dry stubble. ow.
i have been romanticizing this place for the last few weeks (thanks, grand canyon imax) and this helped me take off the rose-colored glasses. while it is a nice little oasis, it's all relative. huz calls it the "greenish" belt. pretty accurate. reality, check.
ow again: i have something in my shoe. what tha? that's not something in my shoe, those are blisters on the bottoms of my feet. great. serves me right for getting exercise.
oh, well - on to the shopping. shoes shoes shoes. via spiga black & white spectator pumps for $40! distressed brown mary jane heels for $25! purple patent bag, just $30! jackpot. for some reason i put the via spigas back. what the hell was i thinking? argh. i'm still experiencing buyer's remorse a week later. dummy.
drove around my old digs. damn, there's a chick-fil-a right by my old place. four years spent craving a chicken biscuit and they put one here as soon as i leave. oh well -- i have a an unlimited supply now (and sometimes even have them supplied for free at work!). i loved that apartment, though. first time living on my own, and it really was a beautiful place. top floor, vaulted ceilings, patio overlooking a green (not greenish) courtyard and the pool... sigh.
showed the huz some of the finer points of phx/scotts. pretty drives, camelback, squaw peak (excuse me - piestewa peak). thoughts of jay.
meet K, M & their cutiepie 1.5-yr-old, A, for dinner at barrio cafe downtown. food was great, mango margarita was even better than i'd remembered. A was a handful! good to see K & M. worth the trip into the 'hood. typical me, i'd thought about where to have dinner for weeks (lunch was a given), and i'm happy with this choice. [other options: oregano's for pizza, pasta brioni for excellent italian, or somewhere new? the best option, pizzeria bianco, is closed on sundays. :( ]
gas up ($10? i need a smaller car! but maybe not this small), look for an atm, look for an atm, look for an atm, curse the gps, find an atm, sleep.
early to rise but that's okay bc it's like 9am to us. hot already. things i don't miss!
flight. glad we're on a good airline (hawaiian). too bad even good airlines have screaming kids. "nonononostopmamastopmamastopmamanononononoidontwannanonostopmamastopmamastopmamanononono..." i want to commit murder.
real food on a plane? wow. yeah, it's a long flight, but the airline industry has set my expectations pret-ty low these days. the spaghetti actually doesn't suck. comes with a tasty southwestern salad and a cookie, to boot. the suckitudiness showed up in the movie: the devil wears prada? who the hell hasn't seen that yet? of course i watch anyway.
honolulu, then one more plane to maui. finally here. somehow the crazy heat here is welcoming, versus phx's hellishness.
hit the ground in maui and beeline to da kitchen for a hawaiian "plate lunch." we found this place last time we were here, on a recommendation from someone during a crappy, rainy day of errand running (in maui -- i know). we've talked about it ever since and have been looking forward to it since N & C told us their wedding would be here. i got the hawaiian plate, a tasty sampler of some local classics. lomi pork, lau lau, chicken long rice, and kalua pork. it's the kalua pork we're here for. i could be the most homesick little southern girl [i'm not], come here and have a plate of kalua pork with sticky rice, and instantly become the happiest camper around. of course everything comes with a scoop of rice and a scoop of macaroni salad. i'm not one for the mac salad, but that rice is tasty. did i mention that it's about 5 pounds of food? it's pretty damned ridiculous, and i put a nice dent in it. and THEN our waitress brings over a rather large slice of cake. i am not one to turn down cake. evidently it was someone's birthday, and i was instructed that i had to try it. twist my arm. mango? lychee? guava? i don't know what the hell it was, but it involved fruit, whipped cream, and cake. yum-mers! i really don't give a crap what i look like in a bathing suit right now. i'm fat and happy.
off to the hotel. did i mention we got a convertible? it's hawaii, it's 80 degrees each day, and i'll be damned if i'm not going home with a tan. a real one.
kaanapali beach hotel. check it out. beautiful grounds, perfect location near black rock for snorkling, and all the other wedding peeps are here. rooms are eh, but who's spending time indoors?
go for a swim, clean up, go meet the wedding peoples for a cocktail or two or three at kimo's on front street (on the water) in lahaina. good people, silly drinks, and it looks like it's gonna be a good week. note to the boys: just because the drink has a manly name does not necessarily make it a manly drink. case in point? the "kamikaze" came in a martini glass and was noticibly pink in hue. second look at the ingredients: fruity vodka, triple sec, lime juice, cranberry. hmmmm... what else does that remind me of? hint: sex & the city. i had a vodka tonic. after a fruity drink, of course. it's hawaii! they don't skimp around here, either. those suckers came with umbrellas, pineapple, AND a cherry! i ate everyone's pineapple. tasty. if only these drinks had those little plastic animals hanging off the side, they'd be perfect.
i spent the next two days on the beach while the boys went to the rehearsal and did manly things. (which did not involve drinking cosmos.) lunch both days at the pool (ahi tuna sammich, teriyaki chicken skewers, tasty curry spring rolls, kick-ass onion rings, various fruit juices - because i'm sure you care).
tuesday night was the rehearsal dinner/luau, complete with fire dancers and an open bar. a good time was had by all. a veeeeeerrrry good time. most of the bridesmaids were hungover, still drunk, or puking the next day. one girl tried everything to feel better, to no avail. one of the resourceful boys (not mine) suggested a certain herbal remedy: "hey, it works for cancer patients, right?" turns out he was right -- she actually felt well enough to go to the main event after a day of puking. somebody's been watching weeds. [of course, being little miss fast-on-the-uptake, i learned this about two days later. i was *wondering* why she was a little, uh, slow at the wedding. ha.]
wednesday = wedding. most. beautiful. wedding. ever. anybody want to get married anytime soon? bueller? i highly recommend olowalu plantation. holy geez it was gorgeous. matt has some pics somewhere. oh, and they even brought us trays of fruity cocktails as we were leaving the ceremony. did i mention this wedding was *perfect*? me likey hawaii.
evidently i was a bit of pain in the huz's ass on the bus back to the hotel. i dunno, i was having fun. but i wasn't the only one, dammit! and i was not the drunkest lil partygoer around, that's fo sho. (i can drink and not be That Girl. really, i can.) other folks had the cojones to keep on keepin' on at a bar down the beach, but i crashed. or so i've been told.
thursday. i was pretty fried by then (sunburn, people) and perhaps a weee bit hungover, so thursday became an island exploration day. we explored iao valley, ate lunch in paia at the fish market (grilled fish and starches galore) and headed down the road to hana. we made it a short way last time but were pretty zonked out and didn't get far. plus, the huz had a pretty good rationale at the time: "hmm -- sitting in stop & go traffic for hours? isn't that what i could be doing at home?" but evidenly we missed some good stuff, so we're off to try it again. of course we start way after everyone else (we're not big on "early"), so most of the traffic is gone. and he makes me drive this time.
beautiful views, black sand beaches, crazy waves, general prettyness. i keep saying "pretty pretty pretty" for some reason. maybe because it was. we found a few spots where folks were definitely less tourist-friendly, but that's where some of the best shots came from. we skipped the waterfalls this time (twin falls is definitely worth the hike if you find yourself there -- but don't believe the guidebooks that say "five minutes" -- it's a bit of a haul) since we've been there, done that, and we wanted to get a bit farther down the road this time. we made it to honomanu bay county beach park and kenae, and then turned around. i know there were some killer falls just a bit further, but it was getting dark and 5 more miles is a loooong way on that road.
headed back to town, tired and gross from a day in the sun, and stopped in lahaina for dinner. went to cheeseburger in paradise, sat looking at the water, and had some greasy goodness for dinner. and a pina colada. this place is commercial to a fault, but the do make a damned good fruity drink. with pineapple. did i mention how much i looooove the pineapples here? our waiter is from charlotte, and he's excited to see some southerners here. evidently not a lot of east coasters and even fewer southern folks make the trek to maui. for good reason: it's frickin' expensive here! i am absolutely in love with this place but agree with the huz when he suggests we find a place we really love in the caribbean instead of obsessing over hawaii. airfare to the caribbean = reasonably accessible. airfare to hawaii (even if your airline doesn't go bust two weeks before your trip) = ouch.
friday. last full day. we have a snorkel/snuba trip planned with the wedding group, and i can't wait. i rented snorkel equipment monday and have been paddling around the kaanapali/black rock area all week, but this should be even better. we did this same snorkel trip to molokini & turtle town before, and we saw some amazing stuff. i even had a ray swim right under me, which freaked me the hell out since it was about a week after the croc hunter dude kicked it. this time, we went the snuba route. i've been wanting to learn to scuba but didn't know if we'd have a chance for me to dive here, so this was a good middle ground to satisfy me. we saw turtles galore, which was very cool. swimming around underwater after one, i turned around to find another one right in my face. awesome. it was a super-calm day, so the snorkling was perfect. we also got to swim over the ridge at molokini, in addition to inside and around the crater. so you're swimming around looking down at the coral a few feet below, then bam you're on the other side of a 400' ridge, looking into the abyss. kickass.
OH. and we saw WHALES!!! preface: i had been *whining* (i know, not me, right?) for four days that I WANNA SEE A WHALE. i kept thinking i saw splashes out in the ocean that must be whales, but they were probably more figments of my active imagination. then, on the way to molokini, we saw (actual) dolphins playing. that was cute. on the way back, we saw a couple of whales swimming around. and then another. and another. in all, we saw a baby humpback jumping and splashing around along with three adults (we figured mom + 2 suitors). huz took pictures galore and everyone was happy. it was so much fun, i forgot to put on more sunblock. oops.
we get back to land and everyone else goes straight to the beach. i went straight for a cold shower. yeah, if you put on sunblock in the morning, spend two hours in the water, keep putting a snorkel mask on your forehead, and then proceed to sit on top of a boat for an hour, not wearing a hat, you may get a little sun. if you're little miss whitey like me, you may get a lot of sun. oops. all that diligence all week (if you've ever sat by a body of water with me, you know i take pride in being a sunscreen nazi), all that floppy-hat-wearing. and i'm a lobster.
so friday afternoon i took a nap. inside. then we drove back to paia for dinner at mama's fish house. we decided the hype wasn't worth the price tag last year, but hell, we've already blown our non-budget, so why not? it was absolutely beautiful. the food was truly amazing -- how many times are you gonna have tuna sashimi sitting beside the water it was caught in? if you go there, just close your eyes and point to something on the menu, but don't, for god's sake, look at the prices. just don't look. this will be the best meal ever if i can manage to not look at my bank statement in the next month.
saturday. the boy finally jumps off of black rock. of course i didn't get it on film. i suck. but i did get some pretty flowers. :)
then we went home. it was a long, loooooooong trip. let's just say it was over 24 hours, 4 flights, and sleeping (or, not sleeping) in an airport. but i did manage to stock up on yummy paradise bakery cookies in phx, and my sister's in-laws (from charlotte) were randomly sitting right behind us on one plane. start humming "it's a small world" now.
it's almost a good thing it took so long to get home, so we could actually apprieciate it when we got here. thankfully, springtime in atlanta ain't too shabby.
after typing this whole novel, i feel like i should end with some words of wisdom or at least some sort of usefulness (other than an annoying song in your head). so here you are.
#1: sunblock is your friend. my scalp started peeling monday. um, yay.
the end. finally.
Sunday, April 20, 2008
i shouldn't throw stones. i'm on my way to touron-central, and my plan is to drink mai tais and sit in the sun all week. this will probably result in a few moronic moves on my part, but i'm really not all that concerned.
until then, i'm just going to make fun of everyone here in the airport. gawd, i wish my camera phone was worth a shit.
there was one lady in the starbucks line at atl with sparkly purple flowers in her hair. a la carmen miranda. but this lady was about 5' 1", in her 60's, and looked like a kindergarten teacher in east cobb. S, picture your mother-in-law. but S's m-i-l would be wearing that as a joke and/or wouldn't wear them with matching spangled purple t-shirt and socks. with sandals. awesome.
i would also love to have gotten a picure of the stellar femullet in front of me in clt. (what a horrible airport code, btw. if you don't get it, you're not thinking dirty enough.) if we were in atlanta, i'd assume she was a self-confident lesbian. but the stonewashed jeans, white tennis shoes and awful accent hint at straight (or closeted) from the kountry. pronounced "kuuuuntry."
not last and not least was the group of old hippies in front of us at clt. 60-yr-olds in tie dye, cargo pants, and chacos. with socks. they at least had an excuse: a) they're from vermont and b) they're on their way to the caymans for a diving trip. i'm not going to make too much fun because i'm jealous. that, and karma is a bitch.
yep, best sport since football. plus, it doesn't require me to be coordinated.
Thursday, April 17, 2008
if you've never been, you are missing a *treat*. if you don't crack a smile here, there is something ridiculously wrong with you. the food is stellar, the folks here rock, and best of all you can find us goils there every week. and if you bring your own wine (as has been known to happen on a thursday grilled cheese night), they will even happily provide bottle opener and glasses.
happiness is grilled cheese, tomato soup, a glass of wine, and good people around you. (or brunch. there's happiness there, too.)
oh, and did i mention they have cookies? yeeeeeaaaahhhhh... happiness.
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
also love amuse-biatch's caption: "nikki cascone finally remembers where whe saved the extra onions and peppers for the judges":
ack, andrew is an effin a-hole. more yelling at the screen.
poor mark is clueless. i hope he doesn't go home, but it doesn't look good.
i will be so glad when andrew, spike, lisa, and jennifer are gone.
of course i'm pulling for richard. he's genuine, he's humble, he's an overall good guy. oh, and his food kicks ass. that, and he's from atlanta. :)
why are these people so appalled at this challenge? looks like the producers are into the drunk-food challenges -- last season it was drunk clubgoers; this season it's drunk birs fans at 1030am. of course the masses are going to have a say in who wins. you have to make your customers happy! how else are you going to be a successful chef??
okay, enough for now. i do love this show, although i hate more people than any prior season. and not in that i-love-to-hate-you way but in a please-get-the-eff-off-my-screen way. does not make for pleasant viewing.
but what else am i gonna do, read a book or something? pshah.
poll of the week. "who would you rather touch in touch football"???????? wtf?
funny as hell that tom won over padma.
funnier even was the huz's response: "apparantly a lot of bears watch top chef."
he was not referring to football fans.)