i have a question...

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Um, Since When is 2010 Over?

I have said many times that 2010 was probably the most personally and professionally significant year of my life, so far.

I student-taught.
I graduated from grad school.
I spent another great summer in Connecticut, where I figured out what the hell I wanted to do next.
My cousin had a baby.
I wrote a book.
I was unemployed for four and a half months.
I got a great job. (Yes, the PERFECT job I was up for in September is MINE, starting Monday.)

How do you top that?

But, the thing is, I think 2011 will be even better.

Because even though I experienced all those things, this is the year I feel like I will really settle into life in Boston.

I'm not just "going to school" here anymore. Now, I work here too.

There's a security and permanence (whoa) to my life here now.

I made a resolution last year to write more, and it's probably the only resolution I've ever kept in my whole life.

So, in the spirit of this year ending and a new, exciting year just around the corner, here are some things I resolve to do in 2011:

1. Do more yoga. (Damn, it's hard to stay consistent with exercise around the holidays. I never knew it until this year, when I took a few days off for Thanksgiving, then tried to get back in the habit, then got really sick for two weeks, then celebrated Christmas. With my workday hours of 11-7, I think I'll be able to fit in a morning routine including yoga.)

2. Revise my novel. (This terrifies me. It took me more than 3 weeks to even read the entire thing, but I was happy to discover I actually liked about 1/3 of it. I need to buckle down, print it out, and start cutting, like whoa. Maybe, it will end up being a short story.)

3. Travel more. (I like the idea of this, but I'm pretty sure I won't be able to afford it. Still, at the beginning of the fall, I was so restless, I thought about teaching English in Japan for a year. I don't really think that's something I want to do, but it would be nice to explore New England, and even more of Boston.)

4. DATE. (Seriously, feel free to have eligible bachelors get in touch with me. And make sure they know how much I like bagels. And chocolate chip cookies.)

Interestingly enough, I started this blog as a New Year's resolution. And [clever title] turns FOUR on January 10th.

Which one of you is buying it its first erector set?

*snicker* Erector.

Thanks so much for another year of support and reading!

Tell your friends about me.

And how foxy I am.

And that I'm single.

OK, I'll stop now.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Best of 2010

I know you've been eagerly anticipating this list ALL YEAR LONG.

I did something smart this year and actually kept track of all these things as I read or saw them.

(Keep in mind that not all of these were actually produced this year. This just happens to be the year I discovered them.)


The Hours by Michael Cunningham
Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
Couldn’t Keep it to Myself by Wally Lamb and the Women of York Correctional Institute
How Did You Get This Number by Sloane Crosley
The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins


Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire
Up in the Air
Fantastic Mr. Fox
Crazy Heart
Rachel Getting Married
Every Little Step
Peter and Vandy
The Cove
The Social Network
Beautiful Daughters


Lungs by Florence + the Machine, especially “Cosmic Love”
For Your Entertainment by Adam Lambert
Recovery by Eminem, especially "Love the Way You Lie"
The Suburbs by Arcade Fire, especially “Ready to Start”
“Breakeven” by The Script
“Uncharted” by Sara Bareilles
The Lady Killer by Cee Lo Green, especially “Wildflower”


In the Heights National Tour
The Adding Machine at BCA
August: Osage County National Tour
Endgame at Steppenwolf
Circle Mirror Transformation at BCA
This is How and The Golden Lasso at Perishable Theatre

Happy holidays, everyone!!! Thanks for reading!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Groceries, Nails, Boning, and Other Stuff

Meet Lara at cLARAfications. She is my Blog Swap Partner for Blog Swap #8, and I knew I would like her when the post she had up last week included the word "poop" in her title.

Plus, she recognized that I'm pretty much Liz Lemon(!)

I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

Read on to discover other reasons why I like her. And make sure you make it to the end to read my post on her blog!

I like to think of myself as a go-getter. I’m a big doer—I do things. Except for when I procrastinate and turn into a lazy sack o’ something. (Censorship is unbecoming, I know, but I don’t want to potty-mouth all over someone else’s blog.)

Coming off a super productive year that included such major accomplishments as “buying 2 pairs of black boots” and “kind of becoming a real person,” it was pretty hard to think of things that I’ve put off, so I got drunk and procrastinated for a few days, and here we are.

But luckily for you, I got my ish figured out and you will soon know what this little lady will be doing after taking midnight shots with her teddy bear on January 1, 2011. (Did anybody else just realize that New Year’s Day is going to be 1/1/11 this year? Whaaa!?)

So here’s THE LIST:
1. Go to the grocery store.

You’re probably thinking, “Really Lara? That’s the thing you’re going to do next year?”

Yep, because along with Jon Hamm, there are some things that a lady needs to survive, and food is one of those things. The problem is, while I will happily spend money on a Jon Hamm fix in the form of Mad Men or a movie ticket to go see The Town, I like to challenge myself to see how long I can go without grocery shopping in order to “save money.”

You’re probably also thinking that I probably don’t save money because I end up eating out so much, and I’m not quite sure that’s the case. I do, after all, work across the street from Costco and am a-ok with eating hot dogs every day.
But yeah, so I haven’t gone to the grocery store in 3 weeks. I think I’ll do that next year…

2. Buy a nail file.

I keep breaking my GD nails and I’m always like, “Balls, I need a file!” and I can never find one. It’s a major buzzkill.

3. Become famous.

I really need to get on this if I’m going to achieve my life goal of being roasted on Comedy Central. In the process I might also achieve other life goals of writing a feature-length script and being a stand-up comedian, so basically if I can pull all of this together next year, I’ll basically have done everything ever and will be totally chill if I accidentally die because hey, I’ll be one accomplished little lady.

4. Defriend people I don’t know on Facebook.

I’ve kind of already started doing this because I can’t handle any more event invitations from every privileged Asian who killed his parents’ dreams of him becoming a doctor and is instead using his $200,000 college education to be a DJ. (In my geometry class in middle school, there was this chart on the wall of the kinds of math needed to pursue different careers. The chart said that DJs needed to know algebra, which is absolute horse doodie, but it definitely didn’t say college degree.)

5. Bone Rodrigo Santoro.

I’m watching that movie Post Grad right now (which is as terrible as I expected) and was reminded that Rodrigo Santoro is a hot piece of man meat, and I would like to take that man meat home and keep it in my freezer along with the chicken that I’ll buy at the grocery store. Then I’ll ration it out over the course of the year—again, just like the chicken. That was a really weird analogy, but the point is, I really want to bone that Brazilian.

Now check out my post here!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Blog Swap #8

20-Something Bloggers' 8th Blog Swap is happening on Monday.

Initially, I was stressed about writing a post in the five days they gave us, once we'd received information about our partners.

But now that I've been bed-ridden for a week (first by self-imposition and now by the fact that I had food poisoning(?) last night), I'm pretty sure I'll get something written today.

I'll be featured, here, on Monday, and I'll feature Lara's post right here.

Send me lots of ginger-aley vibes as I recover from not only my relapsed cold but my angry GI tract.


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Irony and Whine

Late last weekend, I started feeling that unmistakable fog that always means I am about to get sick.

I Emergen-C'd and Zicamed the hell out of myself and felt much better right away, though, when I entered the bitter cold later in the week, my body was not happy.

And I stayed pretty congested all week.

I ignored it, blaming the change in weather and the dry heat of my house.

Since, Saturday, I have had absolutely no plans.

I've been rewatching episodes of The Hills and counting down the minutes until I'm due an offer from a great organization.

I didn't even leave the house until I finally took myself on a walk yesterday afternoon, in 27 degree weather, wearing two pairs of sweat pants, a tank top, long sleeved-shirt, jacket, and hat.

Then, I stayed up past 2:30 AM (my schedule is all off with nothing to do all day long), despite my worsening congestion and itchy nose, and I woke up feeling worse than I did at any point last week.

And I'm looking ahead to a busy end of week and weekend.

Because, of course I am.

My body couldn't decide to be sick when I was already literally in bed all day.

No, it had to revolt just as I look ahead to seeing friends I haven't seen in ages, working, and finally crossing seeing Black Swan off my list.

How rude.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Brrrr, It's Cold In Here...There Must Be a Cynical, Independent Woman in the Atmosphere

Today is cold.

I left my house this morning and it was 18 out.

And, because of that and the fact that I knew I was finishing putting RM's filing cabinet together today and then would go grocery shopping on the way home, I wore jeans, running shoes, a t-shirt under a hoodie, under a scarf, hat, and long winter coat.

My hair was, in fact, clean but it was hidden under the hat and hood.

After triumphing over the cabinet, heading to Trader Joe's, and carrying my two bags of groceries to the train, I was sitting, reading the Metro, and my purse slipped onto the train floor.

Aside from immediately ruing the E. Coli and urine that was now inevitably on my new bag, I was pretty unperturbed and leaned down to grab it, when I saw a man's hand come into my view, to pick it up for me.

I "Lemoned" the situation, royally, (as in Liz Lemon), and went to grab it myself, thwarting the nice young man's efforts, once, twice, and finally surrendered to him and let him pick it up for me, smiling at him and thanking him with a laugh.

I'm sure he was just being nice, but it reminded me of the time I got catcalled from a car while walking down the street in New York, totally bundled in, like, a six-foot long scarf, hood over hat, long coat, and I thought to myself,

"What are you even looking at? It's like 12 degrees out, and besides that, for all you know, I'm a neuter."

Thursday, December 9, 2010

And Now for Something Completely Different...

I just stared at my computer for almost 20 minutes, realizing that it had been a week since I last posted and trying to think about what I could write.

Really, nothing much is going on.

So, I thought, I'll write about that--give you lots of lists of all the Netflix I've been watching, or how I've cried at several holiday episodes this week, or that the St. Jude's Children's Hospital commercials with Jennifer Aniston and Morgan Freeman in them always make me cry. Or how I didn't really leave my bed for two days this week, partly because I've been fighting a cold and partly because I've been watching a steady stream of episodes of Say Yes to the Dress.


Instead, I'm going to tell you about the six hours of work a week I'm actually doing.

When I graduated, all I wanted was for RM to hire me as her personal assistant, and in October, that's precisely what she asked me to do.

Dude, now, I have keys to her apartment. And for those of you who know her, you realize that this is like...having the keys to Oprah's house. (And no, it's not because she's black.)

It's like I get to go to a celebrity's house every week.

Mostly, of course, what I'm doing, is organizing her life. She has piles of paper that haven't been looked at since she moved to Boston in 2001. (True story, she taught her first class on 9/11.) So I have spent the last six weeks, rifling through papers, filing them in corresponding folders and making piles of shit that she has to go through eventually.

Of course, the biggest pile is full of things I have no idea what to do with.

Sometimes, I sit in the office chair, she sits on the couch, and we just go through mail. Marking what is priority, what can be thrown out (four bags full, so far) and what she can't identify. I tease her by saying that if she can't tell what something is in 15 seconds, we're throwing it out.

We talk about men a lot, swap stories of getting catcalled on the street, or tell tales about our respective crazy families.

Last week, we purchased her a large wooden filing cabinet, so these piles of paper could live somewhere, so this week, I'm getting paid to put furniture together. HA! (I'm really good at putting furniture together. All that training with IKEA pieces has paid off.)

The first couple of days I worked with her, I said that we needed to make lists of things we "must do," "should do," and "wanted to do" in the time I'd be helping her out.

Doctors' appointments and important phone calls to be made went on the first list.

Organizing files and books and clothes went on the second.

The third, she had to think about, eventually deciding that things she "wanted to do" are join Facebook and create an online dating profile.

Yes, she is that awesome.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A Rather Ordinary Post (but if you like stories about shopping, read on)

Shopping during the holidays takes a certain strength.

And I'm not even talking about surviving the crowds.

I'm referring specifically to listening to bad holiday music as you try to figure out which of the 900 bags you've been looking at for 45 minutes is the right one.

I decided early this week that I was due a shopping trip.

I don't exactly have the means right now, but I knew that getting a few new things would actually improve my mood, and honestly, I was down to exactly two pairs of jeans.

I also desperately needed a new "grown-ass woman" bag. My purse was near and dear to my heart, but it was a going-away gift from S from when I moved out of New York City, which made it almost three years old.

I had a very important interview yesterday, so I was determined to find the perfect bag.

Something that screamed "professional," but it had to be affordable, sit comfortably on my shoulder, have compartments, and be a certain size.

Since I insist on carrying food and water with me wherever I go and have been known to carry up to three books at any given time.

My purses get USED.

I hadn't been to Back Bay to shop in months, so I started at Filene's Basement.

The handbag section there was fairly uninspiring. Every single bag I picked up was either uncomfortable, too small, or too expensive.

Also, the music they play at Boston's Filene's Basement is so bad. It's distracting and deterring to making good purchases.

Like, imagine the WORST, most poorly sung elevator muzak you can think of.

Filene's was a fail, so I headed across the street to Marshall's, and spent about 45 minutes just walking up and down the aisles, trying on bags, putting them down, trying on bags, putting them down.

After staring at so many bags for so long, I couldn't tell which ones were ugly anymore and almost bought a Steve Madden bag that was brown shiny leather in the shape of a large leathery flower.

I spent so long at the store, I heard their cycle of Christmas music twice. "Mele Kalikimaka" played twice, and several versions of "I'll Be Home for Christmas" and "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve" also assaulted me, while I was trying to concentrate on handbags.

No matter how charming or moving you think those songs are, after hearing them in heavy rotation, you start to feel a little Scrooge-like.

I refused to walk out empty-handed for all the work I'd done, bought two pairs of skinny jeans and a ruffled shirt, and headed back to Filene's Basement, with the Marshall's bag ideas in my mind.

By now, Filene's was also playing Christmas music, so it was a very slight improvement from the previous music that had been playing. Still, none of the bags were quite right.

Determined to succeed, I decided to head further downtown and figured I'd just buy a purse at Macy's. But first checked out DSW, where I actually got in line to buy a large gray bag that was in my budget and was large enough. When I realized it didn't have compartments, I decided not to buy it, at the last minute.

T.J. Maxx was where I found the bag I bought, feet sore, having ridden two subways, and visited four stores.

It's a tan tote with a colorful, patterned lining, and it served me very well on my interview.

Now that I've gotten all the way to the end, I realize this isn't really a good story.

The point is, now I'm a skinny jean convert.