Thursday, December 11, 2008

mmmmm soup


my home away from home every thursday night, the fabulous souper jenny, has finally published a cookbook! and there's a launch party tonight with wine and s'mores. soup, booze, fire, and dessert on a rainy december night: what more can a girl ask for?

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?

all names given to children born in georgia in the past seven years. and all names of kids who will be getting the crap beaten out of them on the playground in the next seven years.

except the 46 (forty-six!) named tequila. they'll be curled up in the doorway, uh, taking a nap.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

because we kick ass

more reasons to love georgia tech football:

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

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

jimmartinjimpowellsaradoyle

i got another awesome sticker today.

you should go vote. again. georgia's big runoff election (heard about it?) is this tuesday, december 2.

i'm not gonna tell you who to vote for or anything; i'm just telling you to GO VOTE! again.

Monday, November 3, 2008

tuesday tuesday tuesday

you may have figured out that tomorrow is kind of a big day. i've already posted on how much i love voting (and think you should too), but don't just take it from me. take it from the people who are willing to give you free shit in exchange for your vote. and i don't just mean that fabulous sticker.

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

back in the day

i was driving down the connector as the sun came up this morning, trying to see the bright side (no pun intended) of being up so early. and then this little 'atlanta sounds' clip came on NPR.... just add river, fog, & cold and you have many of my early college mornings:


http://www.pba.org/programming/programs/atlantasounds/1654/
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:
http://www.pba.org/programming/programs/atlantasounds/1831/
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

root for atlanta

Help bring the largest share of a 1 million-dollar tree-planting grant to your city. You could make an amazing difference in your community simply by using any American Express® Card at participating businesses from Sept 22 to Oct 31, 2008.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

i am a blog slacker.

my mom got a kayak for her birthday. yep, she's 58 years old and got a kayak for her birthday. i think that's awesome. maybe that's the way grownups are supposed to float down the river? we used to just hop in inner tubes.

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?

football season.

how 'bout them dawgs?

hehe.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

pray the rosary

i posted this on myspace a couple of years ago, and here it is again per liz's request. i spend too much time in my car! (and, reading my last couple of posts, could stand to clean up my language a bit.)

.........................................

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.

um, okay.

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!"

holy shit.

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."

seriously?!

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

spamalamadingdong

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

there's a muthaf*ckin SNAKE on the muthaf*ckin CAR!

my family lives in the middle of nowhere, south carolina. in fact, "nowhere" is what lots of the kids i grew up with call(ed) our town. when people in atlanta ask me where my parents live, i just laugh and tell them the same thing. when they press on -- "no, really, is it near i-85? or charleston? what about myrtle beach?" -- i have to explain: seriously, it's not near anything.

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 am too in shock to think of a title right now

um, yeah.

i'm too in shock to think of witty commentary, either.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/eonline/20080529/en_celeb_eo/091c1140609f_4b0a_86c4_a510c70eaa8c

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.]

Monday, May 12, 2008

not exactly speed racer

i busted out the rollerblades last week.

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

spring break hawaii '08. (or, the best miami u delta chi formal ever)


i kept a little ongoing diary/blog/list of boring thoughts during my hawaii trip.  enjoy....


nate & carmen's save the date



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, my.

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.

#2:


the end. finally.


Sunday, April 20, 2008

definition of a cougar

there is a lady sitting in first class on my flight to phoenix (cougar central) wearing a wifebeater that says, in *sequins*, "hooray for rich guys". no lie.

i'll let you imagine what she looks like. you're right.

the only sport better than football

people-watching at the airport is always pretty prime. but sunday people watching is better than any other day. no boring business folks (unless it's someone who works for my old company, but that's a different post) -- it's all goofy tourists on sundays. or, more specifically, tourons. my coastal family members love that word: tourist + moron = touron. there are plenty of them around the beaches, and even more on any given sunday at the airport.

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

the happiest place on earth

now has a website!

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.)

yum.

oh, and did i mention they have cookies? yeeeeeaaaahhhhh... happiness.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

top chef stream of consciousness

okay, wtf with nikki's hair?!?!?! i'm screaming at the tv every time i see that bouffant. i tried to find a screencap of that hideosity, but to no avail and stumbled upon amuse-biatch (love!). i did [also] find out she went to school in atlanta and worked at bacchanalia & floataway cafe (not too shabby), which kinda pissed me off more. we *really* don't need to further the stereotype of the southern girls who spend ridiculous amounts of time on their hair. not that she's southern, but people tend to infer. grrrr.

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.

(last note:
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.)

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

my second favorite day of the year

no, not tax day, silly. but i will note that i am taking full advantage of fulton county residents having an extra month to file this year. hooray, natural disasters! okay, last tornado mention. for a while at least.



so my favorite day of the year is my birthday. second favorite?







mmmmm ice cream. for free!! you will find me in the highlands on april 29th, with a smile on my face.



oh, and in case you miss that, the 3rd best day of the year is just 24 short hours later:


baskin-robbins has the audacity to charge a whole $.31 for theirs, though. gaaahhhhh.

Monday, April 14, 2008

one more tornado post

check out the funnel cloud to the far left behind the bank of america building.... crazy, no? this picture was taken atop a condo on howell mill -- i'm assuming at 14th? -- which is just west of me. see a larger version here.



Wednesday, April 9, 2008

the most expensive 4-day vacation ever

so i'm planning to go to hawaii in two weeks for a wedding.  i researched for months, found the best combination of points + cheap airline, and we're set.  we even have the hotel, rental car, and several activities lined, up, so i've been feeling pretty damned accomplished.  and who couldn't use a week in lovely hawaii?  then we get this email last week:

Subject: Important Information from ATA Airlines, Inc.


Dear ATA Customer: 

We are writing to inform you that ATA Airlines, Inc. has filed for bankruptcy protection and on April 3, 2008, ATA discontinued all operations and cancelled all current and future flights.  According to our records, you are holding a ticket for travel on ATA.  We want to alert you that with this shutdown, ATA is no longer honoring reservations or tickets. 

Customers should seek alternate arrangements for their current and future travel. A list of other airlines serving ATA destinations is available online at www.ata.com.

We apologize for the disruption caused by the sudden shutdown of ATA and regret the impact it will have on passengers. Additional information, including a list of Frequently Asked Questions for Customers, is available at www.ata.com.  

Customers who purchased tickets from Southwest Airlines for flights operated by ATA should contact Southwest at (800) 308-5037 for more information.

If you purchased a ticket(s) using a credit card, please contact your credit card company or travel agency directly for information about how to obtain a refund for unused tickets.  If you purchased a ticket(s) directly from ATA with cash or a check, you may be able to obtain a full or partial refund by submitting a claim in ATA's Chapter 11 proceedings.

We encourage you to review the information provided on our website.


This e-mail was sent by our automated system.  Please do not reply to this message. 


damn.



we've worked it out, but plans have changed considerably (see title for details).  this is how i'm feeling right now:




Wednesday, April 2, 2008

OOOOOHHHoooohhhooooohhhohhh OH: update


PSA of the day

get an extra 30% off of jcrew's final sale now thru friday, bringing their astronomical-of-late prices back near normal folks' budgets. i'm trying to resist their fabulous mary janes (the problem: black patent, parisian, or metallic?), but i'm not exactly known for my self-control....

full disclosure/caveat: no returns.

i'm changing my vote


Friday, March 21, 2008

lotus.

i'll give you three guesses why karen wouldn't let me buy this top (and it has nothing to do with my boobs):

Thursday, March 20, 2008

holy tornadoes, batman!

while i was safely tucked away at the vortex with a frosty beer on friday night, there was some true craziness going on just outside my window. the huz did a little search-and-photo mission the next morning and this is what he saw:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/conway_m_m/sets/72157604127364257/

the girls and i, meanwhile, checked out cabbagetown and some surrounding areas, which you can see here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/kelleywilliamson/

we're flickr dorks.

Monday, March 3, 2008

white people like blogs.

from the fabulousness that is dailycandy:
Are you tired of wondering what to bring to that dinner party?* Or which Broadway show* to take your friend from Seattle* to? Desperate for a blog* with answers to these questions?

Well, search no more, friends. Introducing:
Stuff White People Like.

Stuff White People Like is the only website devoted entirely to stuff that white people like! Enjoy educational articles* on items such as coffee,* expensive sandwiches,* dogs,* and ’80s nights.* Each entry includes a brief description of the item and why white people love it so much.

You’ll also gain insight into the behaviors of white people — for example, their fondness for difficult breakups: “Prior to engaging in divorce, most white people train for it by engaging in a series of long term relationships that end very poorly.”

With inside info like this, it’s hard not to like the site — especially if you’re a white person.*

(*White people love all these things and footnotes.)

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

why january sucked

when i moved to phoenix in the summer of 2000, i didn't know anybody. well, that's not true. i had met the three guys i would be working with, but i didn't really know them. besides, one of them would soon move out of state, and another would be travelling so much i wouldn't really see him much. the third guy, though, became my big brother. i mean, i only had one person to hang out with, so it's a good thing he was fun. he introduced me to people he knew, customers who were fun, and eventually my little circle grew. later that summer we added one more person to our little team, my buddy bryan. the three of us were the whole of lutron arizona. we worked together, played together, made fun of each other, and generally had a damn great time. jay was my mentor and taught me everything he knew (which was endless) about the products, the customers, the company. but he was also my friend.

jay introduced me to both hockey ("the company" had great season tickets) and sushi, which i still think is funny being that we were in the middle of the desert. he took me along to play golf with customers even though he knew i sucked - there was always entertainment value to be had. we went out all the time - every now and then dancing (he of the white-boy-head-bob), but mostly sitting at a bar chatting up each other and whoever else would join in. we discovered that you can ogle all you want when you're with someone of the opposite sex, and nobody will really notice. so he would pick out cute guys for me, i would pick out cute girls for him, and we would rate them and then rag on each other for not getting off the barstool and making a move. at one point he decided that the bartender at our favorite bar (jilly's in scottsdale - oh yeah) needed to be my new boyfriend. so he'd invite the poor guy along every time we went anywhere. brandon would humor him and reciprocate by having the perfect long island iced tea waiting for jay as soon as he walked in the bar. "clear." yuck. but it made jay happy, and that was always fun to watch. this guy was in his late 30's but got carded more than anyone else i know. i even saw a waitress argue with him because he looked like he was 18, so his i.d. must have been fake. he just grinned. he was always grinning. smiling and laughing that maniacal laugh so you knew he was up to something. and you knew you were in for a good time.

and we always had a good time. the boys would pick on me for my eating habits ("i know you want my cookie"), and i would harass them for being general pains in the ass. if it was a nice weekend, we could usually all be found lounging in jay's pool. one winter jay got the crazy idea to turn his swimming pool heater up as high as it would go so we could have a giant hot tub waiting after a night of bar hopping. we'd all head back to jay's house, and in the backyard would be a huge glowing steam cloud. that was a damn fun month, with me spending many nights curled up on the futon just inside the pool door. too bad the giant hot tub came with a giant electricity bill, so that was relatively short-lived. but that was how jay operated. if it's fun, do it. and do it with fervor! he took up scuba diving (again, in the middle of arizona), even taking his gear out into the lake, which we all found pretty hilarious. but he loved it and was determined. he also found a way to go skiing on a regular basis, whether it was in the piddly northern arizona snow or up to colorado and utah. he had been with the company so long, he had a zillion weeks of vacation. i don't think he let any of those days go to waste -- he was always doing something fun. this guy had his priorities in order.

a couple of years into my stint in phoenix, i had racked up an impressive portfolio of so-bad-they're-true dates, mostly with random guys i'd met in bars. jay always got a kick out of my stories, but after a particularly horrible outing (dude argued with me the whole time but refused to cut the date short because maybe we might start to hit it off after the third hour?) he told me he absolutely would not listen to any more of my pitiful stories until i tried online dating. now keep in mind that this was 2002, and match.com was pretty much full of fatties and crazies at that point. or so i thought. turns out jay had been having some luck with it, and he was excited about one particular girl he'd met. he'd met someone on match, and they discovered that while they really cracked each other up, there just wasn't any spark when they met in person. so she decided to set him up with her best friend, kim. that was going well (and kim turned out to be pretty cool), so i gave in to jay's *relentless* badgering after a few months and finally signed up myself.

well i met a guy. that got pretty serious, jay and kim were going strong, and the jilly's era was over. we would meet up every once in a while for a beer, but it wasn't like the raucous drunk-fests of old. i was travelling a lot for work, and we were both wrapped up on our s.o.'s network of friends. i ended up moving back to atlanta in 2004, and he and i kept in touch occasionally by email and text message on the major holidays. the few times i did see him at corporate, he was the same, grinning ear to ear. always a hug and some smartass comment, and we would be on our separate ways again. i'd been meaning to call him around christmas time, just to see what was going on in his world, and i just didn't get around to it.

and then i saw this crazy article about a bus crash in utah near the arizona border. i have this inane way of thinking that i know everybody in the whole state of arizona (harks back to the days when it really did seem like i knew everybody, somehow, in college, i guess), so my first thought was, "i wonder if anybody i know was on that bus." but the first reports sounded like it was full of high school students, and i don't know anybody with high-school-aged kids out there, so i put it out of my mind.

and then i got the call.

jay, kim, and kim's mom were on their way back from a ski trip to telluride. kim and her mom were hurt pretty badly. jay didn't make it.

what the fuck?

this is a guy who is so full of life, so fun and funny and YOUNG. this *kid* (because no matter his age, that's what he always seemed like, and i'll be damned if he doesn't still look 18). that's the only thing i can think over and over again. so full of life. there's NO. WAY. he can be gone. hell, i've still got his phone number memorized. want me to call it? i'm sure it was some other guy. there's just no way.

i hate that it had been so long since i'd talked to him. i hate that i'll never see his big goofy grin again. and i hate that the world has been deprived of such a fun, amazing, caring, wonderful person. words cannot express.

i read the obituary and still couldn't accept that it was him. i read the articles about crash victims where a friend from the dive shop talked about his fantastic smile and still refused to accept it. it wasn't until our mutual friends started posting on the obit's online guest book. one person i know, must be a fluke. two people, yeah they're confused too. three, four, and then certain people who i know have the same kind of relationship i had with him, the same feelings for him, the same love i had for him. oh, shit. maybe it was my jay after all. oh shit oh shit. he was my mentor. he was my big brother. and i have no words to express how i feel right now.






http://www.legacy.com/mcall/Obituaries.asp?Page=LifeStory&PersonID=101039627

http://www.legacy.com/mcall/GB/GuestbookView.aspx?PersonId=101039627

http://www.mcall.com/news/local/all-b1_5baumer.6224105jan12,0,5503830.story

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

go vote!

i love voting. even though everyone in my office likes to tell me my vote doesn't count on election day, i like to believe it does. especially during the primaries, when it doesn't matter what percentage of my state is red or blue. it just gives me a great feeling of accomplishment, and it's even better to look around at the other folks in the same room, with the same feeling. i think it's pretty cool that my polling place is right by the king center. it's a "transitional" area (at best), and i can't help but think, here is one place where everyone is truly equal, and not one person is any more or less important than any another. this person's single vote is no more important than that person's. not weighted on race, income, ethnicity, social ranking, physical appearance, charm, education, or anything else. one equals one equals one.

i voted early and it was such a great atmosphere. everyone was smiling. we just did something good for our selves, good for our candidate, and good for our country. we just made a difference. we felt strongly about a person, a cause, a belief, a message. and we each took a step to do something about it. very cool. this is my kind of patriotism. i'd much rather wear that little peach sticker ("i'm a georgia voter!" wheee!) than some plastic flag, but that's just me, and i'm not going to get all political about what kind of cheesy lapel ornamentation i prefer.

so go vote! it's the best picker-upper you'll experience all week. better even than starbucks (and with much less guilt).


Saturday, January 19, 2008

more on this later.

i will be *really* glad when january 2008 is over.

just sayin.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

i bet his name was derek jr.

scout saves maldives leader from assassin

i know i'm just reporting old news today, but i just keep cracking up when i read these things. all i can picture is spiky hair and BLUE STEEL break-dance fighting down the runway towards the prime minister of malaysia.

i bet that scout was wondering if there was more to life, other than being really, really, ridiculously good looking.

wasn't this the punchline of a "redneck" joke?

bird dog steps on gun, kills hunter

yes, it was in a truck, too. not sure about mama, the rain, jail, a train, or being drunk, but something tells me all of those things were also involved.

how old does THIS make you feel?

Nike to release 23rd Air Jordan

23rd edition?!? are you kidding me? i remember the first kid in my 3rd-grade class to get air jordans was the COOLEST kid around for, like, a month. and i also remember a bunch of parents muttering the word "spoiled" and "hundred-dollar shoes" under their breath. not mine, of course. but somebody's.

does that make me OLD?