Wednesday, October 20, 2010

IT'S MOVING TIME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Update your bookmarks!
Change your blogroll! 
This blog can now be found at 

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Today I Am ....

~ Realizing that it's only Tuesday.

~ Realizing that I've felt this way for several Tuesdays in a row.

~ Fighting the urge to eat a third (or would it be fourth?) Mounds bar mini from my coworker's basket o' goodies.

~ Freezing.

~ Happy to be wearing a cute dress, warm tights and my favorite boots, but still wishing it wasn't already fall. (I'm working on it people, I SWEAR!)

~ Glad that I'm able to multitask, because there just don't seem to be enough hours in the day.

~ Wondering when I became the sort of person who thought "there just don't seem to be enough hours in the day".

~ Thinking about this guy I've been spending a bit of time with lately, and when I'll get see him again.

~ Relieved that the event website I've been working on for three days is finally ready to go live (holds breath, crosses fingers and toes).

~ Looking forward to drinks with a friend tonight.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Quote Of The Day - Laugh, Damn It!

“Laugh at yourself first, before anyone else can.”

~ Elsa Maxwell

- - - - - - - -

This quote makes me smile, because if you ask my friends, family and especially my coworkers, I'm an easy source of laughter. I'm happily self-effacing, I will try to make unnecessarily difficult situations lighter, and anyone who teases me will get teased right back. I live to entertain. (That is, when I'm not trying to make the world a better place. Or trying to get some sleep.)

And with that, I am declaring a moratorium on my whiny "who reads what I write?" "why do I edit so damn much?" "why can't I express myself the way I want to on this blog" kinds of posts.

Because in real life, I'm confident in who I am, I'm not afraid to laugh at myself - and I will try damn hard to make you laugh, too.


Monday, September 20, 2010

Not Graceful

Before any man captured my attention, before I adopted Stormy, before I lived on my own, my car was my one and only love. The day I owned her outright remains was one of the happiest of my life.

As much as I love my VW, the trunk of my car has been.... well, not entirely functional. For a while. About a year. Okay, maybe more. Because my Ex was the only person who was able to successfully close the trunk of my car.

So, I've just spent the past year or so not using the trunk of my car. (I haven't wanted to find out how much it would cost to fix, okay?)

"It opens like a DeLorian" I've joked to friends and coworkers about the strange diagonal-angled opening that accompanied the usual unlatching of my VW's storage compartment. "Just use the backseat! We'll hide your things, this neighborhood is safe, no worries!"

Or, on occasion. I'd use the trunk, but caution at its potential lack of usefulness, but add "Hey, no worries, it can be closed safely. Just ... um, give me a moment...." as I wrestled with the pesky corner that generally refused to close properly.

It was with one such flippant remark that I did something remarkable this afternoon:

I shattered my rear windshield.

This was not something I had expected as a possible side effect of having a slightly malfunctioning car trunk.

I had stored two storage boxes, two roller suitcases, a duffel bag and a backpack in the car's roomy trunk. Then asked my Office Spouse, coworker and coworkers husband to step back as I valiantly attempted to wrangle that tricky corner of the trunk closed so we could drive to a meeting.


"Wait... wait... what's happening?" exclaimed my coworkers' husband in disbelief.

I froze. I stared at the growing spiderweb pattern.

"What IS happening?" asked my Office Spouse, impatient to get on the road.

"I... think.... I think I .... I just .... just ... broke my, my ..." I stammered.

I wanted to cry. My car. My fully paid-off darling girl. HOW COULD I HAVE DONE THIS TO HER?

With a calm that belied my inner fury at myself, (and my inability to take my eyes off the spiraling spiderweb pattern) I said "Okay. Let's unload, lets go back upstairs..."

"... and we'll figure it out from there," finished my Office Spouse.

We rented a car.  As I write this, my coworkers and I are preparing for our meeting. I've arranged for my car to be fixed by a mobile repair unit.

Once things were settled with the insurance company and we were on the road, I called my father to tell him what happened.

"Well, my dear," he said, "That was not very ... graceful of you."

I agreed, and added,  "But hey, I bet you didn't know a trunk could do that to a rear view window!"

Monday, September 13, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“Funny that a pair of really nice shoes make us feel good in our heads - at the extreme opposite end of our bodies.”

~ Levende Waters

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Staycation, All I Ever Wanted

Back to the grind and happy to report that my time off from work was lovely and restorative.

No, there was no hiking in Great Falls, drives to the Delaware shore or wandering around Capitol Hill or the the museums.  But, in my own way, I was productive: I took care of doctors visits and cleaned my apartment. I finished two books and started two more (FYI, if you haven't read The Hunger Games yet, you are missing out) and went shopping for a new couch with my parents. And ... yeah, that's about it for my list of activities that did not fall under the category of 'sloth'.

Unless you also want to include conquering my irrational fear of upside-down roller coasters as one of those items..... WHICH I DO!

Don't Danny and Victor look dapper?

I'm still hoarse from screaming with fear and glee.  We rode at least ten coasters, two of them twice, as well as few other rides.  And I loved it!

The day before this trip, I found out that a much-loved coworker lost her battle with lung cancer. It was not unexpected news, but it was still  heartbreaking. I reached out to my coworkers to let them know that I was with them in feeling this tremendous loss, and that I was hugely grateful to have them in my life.  My office spouse encouraged me to go face my silly fear of upside-down coasters -- and to have a wonderful time in the memory of our departed friend.

Which I did. And I can say that it was a good vacation.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Vacation Time Approaches

Early in the summer, my boss started telling me that I had a lot of vacation time to use, and that I should take advantage of it. I smiled and said "sure, I'll use it later in the summer".

I made no plans for taking time off. I just kept along my merry way, working hard, stressing myself out, having the occasional early-AM panic attack about my parents health (Note: Dad is now doing very well, his recovery has been going smoothly, although he claims to still be exhausted by the functions of daily life. But hey, recovery is an individual experience and relative process - if Dad feels like he's still recovering, who can argue?) but generally feeling like I had things under control.

But in early August, I started feeling tired all the time. And occasionally jumping at loud noises (I really wish I were kidding about that) and not feeling my usual cheerful self. Around this time, my boss casually mentioned my abundance of vacation time again. I started to think that maybe time off would be a good idea, after all.

So, despite the fact that I don't have travel plans, I'm taking five days off from work. If you include the Labor Day weekend, that will be seven days of vacation.

Or 'stay-cation'. Other than a day trip to Kings Dominion to conquer my fear of upside-down roller coasters, I have absolutely no idea as to what I'll do with my free time. Besides sleep, read and contemplate my navel. And clean my apartment.

What would you do if you had five days of completely free time and no obligations?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“Don’t agonize. Organize.”

~ Florynce R. Kennedy

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A Loss

It should come as no surprise that someone who is an avid reader and writer has always loved English class. From 'reading time' in 1st grade to 'Shakespeare Interpretations' in graduate school, English class has always the one that I loved the most. I don't suppose I would have been an English major, otherwise.

As I've grown, learned (and explored the possibilities of writing in my career) there have been amazing teachers and mentors who have supported and guided me on the way.

One such teacher was Gary McCown. I took 11th grade English with him -- and I can honestly say that it was one of the hardest and most frustrating classes that I have ever had. He was adamant that we all speak in class discussions. He insisted that we take careful notes on everything he said -- which proved to be absolutely necessary if you wanted to pass one of his mind-wrenching exams.

But through that annoying, demanding year, Gary taught my classmates and I how to read the Bible as a piece of literature. He showed us the delicate nuances of argument. He would jump on tables when he got excited about a particular point, whether it was an argument made by Martin Luther King or something from Genesis.. He would make gyrating motions with his hips when we talked about sex scenes - especially those in the Bible that lacked any sexy descriptions whatsoever.

My senior year of high school, Gary offered to write one of my college recommendation letters. But first, he insisted that we sit down and talk at great length about what I intended to get out of my college experience. I don't remember what that discussion included, but I recall how thrilled I was to be interviewed by this dynamo of a man.

During college and after I graduated, whenever I would visit the high school (usually to pick up my sister), I would look for Gary. He was a fascinating character to me and I enjoyed our brief, eclectic conversations. He once suggested that I teach English at the school, "just until I sort things out" when I was job hunting, post-college.  After he retired, I saw Gary at both my 10th reunion and my sister's 5th reunion.

Gary and my sis

I found out this afternoon that Gary passed away a few days ago.  This is not the first of my mentors to 'depart this mortal coil', but it's one I feel enormously. 

(Please excuse errors that I would usually not allow in my writing -- this has shaken me quite a bit.)

Friday, August 13, 2010

Guest Blogging is FUN

Happy Friday, everyone!

Since Emily Jane is off getting married and honeymooning (PS she DID win the contest! Good job, team!!!), she asked a few of her blogger friends if they would guest blog in absence. So, I suggested that my friend Michelle and I write a post together, and ... well, go see for yourself!

One On One

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Just a Quickie ...

(...that's what she said!!)

I'm in the process of investigating a move to a Wordpress website, making things fun and more interesting-looking for y'all, and somehow, that has tapped my creative energy.

Okay, that's only part of my excuse for not writing a long, more interesting post.  Because I do have things to share that are of greater interest and relevance to my life, so I'll just keep writing for a bit .....

I've joined a (paid) dating website. At my parents insistence encouragement repeated suggestion, and on their tab. Writing that profile for myself was one of the more challenging projects that I've had in a while. But it does seem to have garnered some interest, and I have two potential dates coming up.... well, we shall see. And I'll report back, never fear.

My father had minor surgery last Friday, and it has made me panic. Repeatedly. Despite the fact that it was a routine procedure and he's been recovering nicely so far (knock wood), the whole process has scared the hell out of me. Maybe it's the control freak in me; maybe it's facing the mortality of my parents; whatever the case, Dad has been in much better spirits than I've been.

I mentioned to my boss this week that perhaps I should take some time off this month, since I've had no vacation time. She completely agreed .... so now what?  Do I take a 'staycation'? Go somewhere by myself for a long weekend?

And... today is my Friday. I'm so glad it's almost the weekend.  I'm having dinner with good my dear friend L tonight, celebrating two birthdays tomorrow night ... AND PLAYING WITH MY NEW iPHONE THE REST OF THE TIME!

Hey, I wrote more than I thought I would. Cool.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”

~ Anne Frank

This is the reason why my Life Is A NonProfit Paradise.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“The most important thing in life is to learn how to give out love, and to let it come in.”

~ Morrie Schwartz

Monday, July 26, 2010

Mumbled Musings on a Monday

Because my ADHD mind cannot focus on work quite yet, and I can't seem to write a coherent blog post, I'll just fall back on good ol' list-making....
~ I had what I thought was a good date last Thursday night, with a guy I met online and had been chatting with for a few weeks. But apparently, he didn't feel the same way; he sent me an IM on Friday morning to say sorry, but he wasn't interested. I appreciated the honesty, and I told him as much. My pride was a bit wounded but fortunately, didn't last long, as I quickly realized that it's entirely his loss. Clean plate! Moving on!

~ DC has been suffering from record-breaking heat, and although I dearly wish I had ready access to a pool, I vastly prefer this weather to the freezing cold and absurd amounts of snow we experienced last winter. (Go ahead, disagree with me!)

~ I ordered the iPhone 4. This is worthy of notation because I cannot wait to get it, and because I am a nerd. I proudly accept this.

~ A long-overdue chat with my sister on Sunday afternoon was a wonderful way to restore my perspective on a number of things. Not the least of which being the fact that I have an awesome sister.

~ Having taken my flex day and fully enjoying my three day weekend, I feel slightly less vacation-deprived.

And.... that's about it from me.   How was your weekend?  How has your summer been so far?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Dreaming Is Free

I'm on a budget. I'm 'shopping my closet'.
I'm only buying items that I 'really need'.

But a girl can dream....

Thursday, July 15, 2010


I just wrote and then deleted a post about how, even though last summer was full of amazing new experiences and trips to the Caribbean, and I have no vacation plans whatsoever for this summer, I'm still determined to see the bright side of things.... because I totally pissed myself off.

Because, damn it, I'm being positive.  And even though I don't have any vacation plans to speak of this summer, I have come in to work on my day off (and volunteered myself to do so, no less) and I have made at least one Bad Life Decision about boys in the past few months (and still sufficiently ashamed to discuss it here) things are good.

I'm making new friends, with the help of get-togethers like the #DCAmazeballsHH (described wonderfully by both fabulous Sara and the charming Ms. Raspberry).

I'm making a point to reconnect with friends that I haven't seen recently. Case in point: Drinks with Ali last night -- we hadn't seen each other in over 7 months, which we agreed is absurd.

I'm getting out of debt.

In the wake of a miserable winter ... I'm happy. 

And I'm also exhausted, so I'm going home now.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010



Jess is slouched on a gray, tweed-patterned couch. She is in the middle of a conversation with her Therapist, who is facing her, seated in a wooden rocking chair. 

Jess: So, I tried to blog about my relationship with The Italian. I found it really easy to describe how great things were when we started dating, and nearly impossible to describe why I had to end things.

Therapist: You should save that for your novel -- that was a five year relationship, after all. And the reasons for it ending are far too nuanced for a single blog post.

Jess: My novel...I like that.

Therapist: (smiles)

Jess: But you're right. Things with The Italian were just too ....complicated for me to try to describe in single post.  And besides, I want my blog to be about what my life is like now and where I'm going, not how things were. I just wish I had more to report than "I'm working a lot" and "So far, 31 isn't too bad". I mean, I want to be entertaining!

Therapist: I'm sure you'll find something to write about.

Jess: ...yeah.

Therapist: (glancing at watch) Well, we're out of time. I want to remind you that I'm going to be out of town -- you know who will be on call while I'm away....

Jess:  (sitting upright) What?! That quack? She still has a license?!

Therapist:  Now, now...

Jess: I can't believe you're leaving me in the hands of that lunatic. Talk about the innmate running the asylum. This is outrageous...!

Therapist: .... she's your mother.

Jess: Exactly my point! What if she drives me to a psychotic break? What if I have a nervous breakdown! Or need to get a refill for something?

Therapist: (laughs) You can call me.

Jess: Hmph. I'll see you when you get back, then.


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Quote of the Day

"Life is all about timing...the unreachable becomes reachable, the unavailable become available, the unattainable...attainable.

Have the patience, wait it out.”

~ Stacey Charter


Another quote that I should have readily available and easily visible at all times.

I am many things, but patient is not one of them!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Read THIS, Too!!!

Okay, by now, you've Tweeted about the amazing LiLu several times by now.  And you should continue to do so until our girl has won the MTV TJ contest!

So, now what to do with your spare time?  Well, here's another contest for an amazing woman that needs your attention:

Emily Jane is one of seven finalists in a contest to make her wedding dreams come true.  (Okay, she's getting married to a darling man, so that's pretty awesome, but this would be great, too.) The crown jewel of the prize package is a honeymoon to the Mayan Riviera -- and our girl deserves this! Here's whatcha gotta do:

Voting will be JULY 6 – 27, 2010, and you can vote once, per email address, per day. All you need to do is register at don’t need to be a bride, or getting married, or even interested in weddings!), just sign in & vote at:

Friday, July 2, 2010

Social Media Day 2010

My friend Liz wrote an excellent of the Social Media Day Happy Hour that we attended at the Science Club two nights ago.  It's so good that, rather than try to describe it myself, I'm going to steal from quote her:
Those of us who engage in social media tend to err ever so slightly on the side of egotism.  (I’m no exception. I think I’m awesome.) [Editors Note - I think she's awesome, too!]  We like the sound of our own voice so much that we are convinced other people must and will hear it.  We have shit to say.  We’ll divulge flaws, emote publicly, and poke fun at ourselves.  Sometimes in a long, meandering blog post, and other times in only 140 characters or less.
Bloggers/Tweeps/Whatevers are such a rowdy ever-expanding bunch, it was only a matter of time before people came along who tried to manage, label, and dissect what social media is and what makes those of us involved tick.
But when you sift through all the fluffy jargon and “Twitter optimization”-speak, social media is about exchanging ideas and having your voice heard. I got to talk with people who, without tools like Twitter and blogging, I would have never met.
It was a hilariously amazing, awe inspiring, idea sharing, beer spilling, Jameson swilling evening.
I really and truly could not have said it better myself.  Plenty of people have said "there's no need for Social Media Day -- really, isn't every that every day?"

Well, yes, to a certain extent. The wide, wonderful world of social media keeps churning out news and nonsense, regardless of the day. Or hour. And everyone who comments on a blog, refreshes their Twitter feed, updates their Facebook status, or what have you, is a part of it. But, as Liz said, Social Media Day gave us all a chance to meet face-to-face.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Pay Attention to This!

I know I've gushed about some of the awesome DC bloggers in the past, but this is a particularly important blogger-love post.  So grab your barf bags:

The amazing and talented LiLu has a chance to become the first MTV "Twitter Jockey".  (She has a detailed post about it here).

LiLu for MTV TJ

Let's make this happen! Put this in your Twitter status (oh, yeah, and follow her on Twitter, too, if you're not already):

Follow @LivitLuvit, my favorite contestant in the @MTVTJ search for MTV’s first Twitter Jockey! #zyncmtvtj

That is all... for now.

Monday, June 21, 2010

My Dad Rules, Too

My father is the king of perfectly timed one liners. And, sometimes, that means only one word.

For example: Two years ago at my parent's Thanksgiving dinner, I was entertaining our guests with a story of an awful date with a guy who, unfortunately, also was known as "Jess" (this was not, in it of itself, the reason for the date being awful. Edited to Add: I remembered last night that one of my first blog entries was about that date).

I was recalling how, on our way out the door after dinner, this young man commented on our use of the same nickname, and asked "Well, if you go by 'Jess' and I go by 'Jess', what am I supposed to call myself?"

Dad chimed into my story to suggest: "Shmuck?"

The room dissolved in laughter to the point of tears. Which ended that particular story, but on a hilarious note that was far better than how it actually wound up closing. (I had said "You need to call yourself something?")

My father has an amazing sense of comedic timing and excellent storytelling skills. So much so that his long-winded stories and jokes were among the first I tried to retell to my friends as a little girl.  However, I never garnered on the playground the same roaring reception that his stories received at my parents dinner table, crowded with their friends and colleagues. I'd try out his shaggy-dog stories with the same mannerisms and pauses he used. But my poor, benighted elementary school classmates just did not appreciate the humor in his story about a Russian-speaking guest-conductor who explains to his American orchestra: "Bad. Not good."  (Yes, that is the punchline.)

I know my sister has inherited his comedic timing. I like to think I've inherited some of his storytelling skills -- although my delivery isn't quite right in telling the one about the Jew Who Won The Lottery. But if you get to know my Dad, he'll tell you the joke himself.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Am I Mean?

Learning to date again....

He seemed charming enough. I mean, I did arrive an hour before my friend, and he didn't kick me out of the booth I'd snagged. And he was cute, so I left my business card with the receipt.  How very DC.

His first email came two days later, and despite that the subject line was "Hey Kiddo!" (a term of endearment that I reserve for my younger sister and, therefore, assume that others only use it for siblings, relatives, children, pets, and the like) I responded that it was nice to hear from him. He wrote back asking for my number so we could make plans; I obliged; then he responded saying that we should "deffanately" hang out soon.

This gave me a moment of pause. I'm a stickler for correct spelling and grammar. I can understand and forgive errors in text messages, but in this world of spell-checking smart phones, how does one get away with sending "deffanately"? (And the emails did say 'Sent From My Mobile Device').

His next email came in the form of a Facebook friend request. It was accompanied by a message that he was new to Facebook, and was he doing this right? Almost simultaneously, he sent me a text message to say that he'd sent me a Facebook friend request and had he done it right?

I ignored both. Not only do I tend to avoid making FB friends with people I don't really know (and to say that I 'know' someone includes exchanges on Twitter, regular message board interactions, and posting comments on each others blogs. Basically, if I don't know you in the real world, we at least have a sense of each other online.) but I also wondered why he didn't have any friends on Facebook to explain the rather simple process to him.

This was right before Memorial Day weekend, which included my birthday celebration, a date with another guy, spending a lot of time with friends, seeing my parents, and significant amounts of time spent doing absolutely nothing.  Then I got slammed at work. This is all to say .... two weeks passed and I'd forgotten about "Mr. Deffanately."

Then, last Wednesday night, I got a text message from him: "I thought we were gonna hang out."  I thought about it briefly, felt no desire to respond, so I didn't.

The next night, he called me at 11pm. I didn't answer the phone. I consulted with friends and asked the Twitter world for advice; the majority responded that I should continue to ignore him if I wasn't interested. And then he texted me again: "Whats up?"

I quickly typed, "Please don't call or text me again. Thank you."

His response: "I'm sorry... I thought you wanted to hear from me... Won't do it again."

Thank goodness, I thought.

Then my phone buzzed again: "Why the hell did you give me your card then?!"

I sighed and wondered the same thing. I clearly need a screening process.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“Get up and dance, get up and smile, get up and drink to the days that are gone in the shortest while.”

~ Simon Fowler

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Deep Thoughts

Feeling unmotivated to work this morning, I decided to catch up on a few blogs. Including a more recent discovery, the eloquent words of Emily Jane.

Holy inspiration, Batman.

In reading two of her most recent posts, I realized that I'm not pushing my own boundaries enough.

Even though I've made important changes in the past six months, taken steps towards self-improvement, and made my 31st birthday resolution to have more confidence, I haven't been testing myself. There hasn't been any need to leave my comfort zone. Sure, work has presented me with some interesting challenges -- but other than that, I think know that I'm in a bit of a holding pattern.

Granted, I've already survived the "Quarter Life Crisis" that a few of my fellow bloggers have been writing about lately. That time in my life resulted in my changing jobs twice, going to graduate school, moving out of my parents house, and ending a five year relationship. This is all to say that I've already been through a significant period of wondering "what the hell am I doing with my life?" and then making changes to answer that question.

But now what? I'm in a good place in my life, in many ways: I live on my own, I have my Masters degree (and have no interest in any more grad school, thankyouveddymuch), I have no desire to leave my beloved DC, and I love my job.

So what, then, would challenge my status quo?  I'm not really sure what needs to be challenged in my life -- but it's increasingly clear that something needs to change.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

DC Bloggers Happy Hour

Calling all DC Bloggers.... it's that time again...

DC HH June 4

What A Weekend

I'm still recovering from my crazy and awesome weekend.  

~ My sister was in town
~ Mom was one of three awardees at a banquet on Friday night, which the family attended together (I cried a little, I was so proud of her...)
~ My friend Alyx, one of the geniuses behind LOLFed, was also in town for a baby shower and to play tourist in DC...

Our Saturday started with  boozy milkshakes at Ted's Bulletin ....

we had the white russian ones... mmmm

... followed by an amazing tour of the Capitol

you've seen this before

that's what's under the dome, FYI

stylishly standing at what used to be the center of DC

did you know the Supreme Court used to meet in the Capitol? 

.... and then lobster rolls at Tacklebox (sorry no pics)

~ Sunday was spent at a baby shower of epic proportions, in honor of one the founders and moderators of
(this photo credit goes to thumperz)

margaritas in sippy cups

~ Monday, after taking A to the airport and taking a long nap, my friend Sami took me to spend the afternoon on her father's boat as an early birthday present /getaway for me (and yes, this was an approved vacation day, kthx)

You can see the sunburn already!

And now, I'm catching up on work and getting ready for another long weekend. Which will include some sort of celebration for my 31st birthday. Or maybe several celebrations. And you're welcome to join! 

Monday, May 17, 2010

Better Week, Ahoy!

Much love and many thanks to my friends and blog-buddies for the words of encouragement after my last, emo post. I have said it before, and I'll say it again: I truly am blessed to have such supportive people in my life.

The weekend was both restful and productive, which is an amusing and often unusual combination for yours truly. After running errands and spending time at the gym, I went to a party on Saturday night. I made friends while learning a new drinking game -- and remembered that I'm not very good at drinking games. Or very good at them, if by 'good' you mean 'get drunk quickly'. Sunday was spent recovering from the aforementioned party, for the most part.

I also had dinner with my parents on Sunday.  The topic of childhood memories came up, because I'd emailed both if them the link to this hilarious and mildly gross blog, ShitMyKidsRuined. My father said that my sister and I never did anything half as awful or destructive as is depicted in those submissions; I then proceeded to describe a number of times when both my sister and I decorated various household surfaces that were not meant for crayons, markers, fountain pen ink or bodily fluids. Both of my parents were amused by my stories of these early artistic efforts, and I was quick to point out that they were absolutely not as entertained by them at the time. 

Anyhow. I have a busy and entertaining week ahead of me. There will likely be ridiculous pictures to share, or at least amusing stories -- either way, I'll keep you all posted. 

Friday, May 14, 2010

Two Quotes, No Waiting

As a chronic over-thinker, I suspect I might need to tattoo this on my forehead. 
Okay, or maybe just print out a few copies. That's more plausible.

Something else that I need to remind myself of. 

This is a borderline-depressing post, and 100% emo. So, my apologies. But I've had a frustrating week, during most of which I've felt overwhelmed, exhausted and sad. And for no particular reason that I could identify. Maybe it was the (relative) excitement of two work trips, followed by exhaustion and loads of mindless things to catch up on. Maybe it was the fact that the weather was decidedly un-May-like this week, and the cold and rain just got to me.  Or maybe the looming birthday and my lack of desire to celebrate it is depressing me. Or hey -- it could be all of these things!

Whatever the case: I'm moving forward now. It's Friday; it's sunny; my weekend is unplanned and therefore, I've decided, full of potential. 

Thank you for your patience while I have cleared my head of this garbage. Onward, upward, huzzah...!!!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

A Verklempt Moment

I'm wishing it weren't just Tuesday, that I'd slept more last night, that it was sunny outside and that my checking account would magically be filled with a few million dollars. And a coworker just stopped by my cube and said:
"You mean so much to me, Jess. Your work is so important to me and I am so grateful to you. Thank you. I don't tell you that enough."

I'm not sure if I wanted to cry or smile, so I'm kind of doing a little of both.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

My Mom Rules

Last night/yesterday morning, the cat woke me at 3am (shocking, I know). Unable to go back to sleep, I found myself thinking about my upcoming birthday. Which lead to thoughts about birthdays past. So, I started a list in my head about how I celebrated ten years ago, five years ago, three years ago, and of course, last year, when I celebrated the big 3-0.

As I attempted to block the sounds of the cat tearing around the apartment, scrabbling on the wood floors after his little jingly ball and knocking things over, this mini-chronicle seemed like the makings of a really interesting blog post. But, then again, it was between the hours of 3 and 5 in the morning. 

And there really is one birthday story worth sharing: My 21st.

May 29, 2000: It was Memorial Day weekend, I was home from college, and not a single one of my friends was around. And there I was, of legal drinking age and ready to (legally) party.  I was also preparing to spend 10 weeks in New York City, where I'd have an abundance of bars, boys and alcoholic beverages with ridiculous names to choose from -- but none of that mattered, because by then, I'd already have been 21 for, like, a week.

Our family celebration was lovely. We went out to dinner at a nice restaurant, which was followed by cake and gifts at home. I really had nothing to complain about -- and really, I didn't.

But my mother knows me all too well.  (Although I'm sure it didn't really occur to her that I could possibly want to celebrate this particular coming of age in such a fashion that would result with me being sick as a dog.) After cake and gifts were dispensed with, Mom sighed and said:

"Okay, I'm taking you out for a drink."

I stared at her in disbelief.

"I'll be your... designated driver," she said. "Just don't get too drunk!"

Mom took me to Houston's Restaurant in downtown Bethesda. The bar was half-empty. But the bartender and the few patrons there were all too willing to help me celebrate my birthday. They were surprised and thrilled that my mother was the one helping me celebrate this milestone. ("You're really not her older sister? or her aunt?" they kept asking.)

After imbibing a rum and coke, a strange concoction called a "Redheaded Slut", and some drink that involved a shot of jager in seltzer, my mother declared an end to the festivities. As we walked back to her dark blue, 1989 Volvo station wagon, she asked "So, was that okay....?" Giddy, and half-drunk, I threw my arms around her.

"That was AWESOME! Thank you so much! You are the BEST!"

"Just don't puke in my car," she replied.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Things I Learned in New Orleans (in no particular order)

 ~ Drinking a delicious, rather high-octane, drink called "Smurf in a Blender" will turn your teeth, lips and tongue bright blue
 Here I am, consuming the aforementioned drink

~ Bourbon Street can be beautiful at night

~ The beauty of Bourbon Street at night is, most likely, amplified by consuming a number of Hurricanes at the Piano Bar at Pat O'Briens. (and not all of these are my empties - I swear!)

~ Southern hospitality really does exist 
~ Deep-fried oysters are amazing
~ The cable car is a picturesque, but rather inefficient, means of travel.
~ It is possible to jam-pack your time in New Orleans with wonderful sights and meals, and still not see or consume everything that you had hoped -- which means a return tip is required
~ Smoking rates among African Americans and individuals of low socioeconomic status in our country are ridiculously, obscenely higher than the rest of the general population (and yes, I do realize that's a very general statement - but I don't quite have time or space here to share all that I learned at the conference)

I've been home for two days and am still exhausted -- and still feeling full from fried everything, rice-and-beans, Southern breakfasts, and good ol' hotel food. The conference was great, the company was wonderful, and the overall experience was unforgettable.

Edited to Add: And to quote my coworker's Facebook status: "EVERY work conference should include a live New Orleans jazz band at lunch and a gospel choir at the post-conference reception. Conference planners, please take note."

Friday, April 23, 2010

Photo Of The Day

I found this photo this AM the incredibly vague folder in my bookmarks menu called "Links". It ends up being a catchall for things that I want to see again.  Not quite as specific as "Shopping", "News", "Financials" or "Geek" (which is the folder for things related to the websites I manage, as well as important things like "How To Clean your White MacBook").

But I digress....

This image is what I work my heart and soul out for, and can't wait to see on every vending machine, on the counters in every store that sells tobacco and every pack of cigarettes sold in this country.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Quote Of The Day

"A good friend is a connection to life—a tie to the past, a road to the future, the key to sanity in a totally insane world.”

~ Lois Wyse

Monday, April 19, 2010

Better Living Through Chemistry

It's taken me a week to be able to comfortably and competently write this, because it's taken me about a this long to readjust to 'normal' after the minor medical miscalculation I made.

Of course, since this is a post about me and ADHD, it would figure that I'd start somewhere in the middle of the story.... All right, let me back up a bit and explain what happened:

A mail-order script for my medication was processed and shipped to my apartment building. It needed to be signed for, but my building manager failed to so. Twice.

After counting what precious little of my (medically prescribed) stash remained, I spent an hour or two on the phone with my insurance company and the post office. I found out that the package was going to be returned to the mail-order people, but I was promised that they'd slap a new address label on it and send it to my office, instead.


In the meantime, I realized that I was facing going cold turkey off my ADHD medication. But I countered my anxiety by telling myself "This is not a big deal! I can totally focus and be productive with a very low and/or nonexistent dose."

Nothing could be further from the truth.  The first day of an extremely lowered dose was the day after my 5K walk/run,  I was already really tired, not to mention sore and not exactly in the mood to be at work. But other than starting to doze off during a late-afternoon conference call (which was only slightly mortifying) I did okay.

Day two, I was determined not to make the same mistake. I don't know how I thought I'd do better, since I had even fewer meds on hand by this point. Before my 9.30 AM meeting, I had a large cup of tea, followed by a large cup of coffee (which I never drink). But halfway through the meeting, I started to fall asleep. And in a desperate attempt to not to do so, I started shifting in my seat, blinking my eyes ... and, apparently, bopping my head along as my coworkers talked.

"Jess? I see you nodding in agreement, do you have something to add?" asked my supervisor.

I snapped my head up from my (scrawled, smeary) notes to make eye contact. "Nope, just following along," I quickly replied.

That afternoon was agony.  I stayed in my cubicle, determined not to inflict my dazed and bitchy self on my coworkers. But as I bounced from project to project, from attempting small website edits to composing template email responses, my complete and utter inability to focus was driving me crazy. I couldn't get comfortable. Plus, my stomach ached from all the coffee I'd had to drink. I felt mean, tired and had no patience for friendly IM's, silly emails or... well, anything.

When I finally saw my doctor that evening, she wrote a refill scrip to tide me over.
"Why did you do this to yourself?" she asked. 
"I thought I could do it," I replied. "I mean, I do okay on the weekends without the medication."
She studied me for a moment. Then she said: "You're like a diabetic who can't go without insulin in certain situations. This is a real medical condition that you're being treated for. You need to take care of yourself."

I felt stupid and ashamed. But now that I can focus again, I know that she's right. And I will.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Quote Of The Day (and personal food for thought)

I usually say "Of course I worry. It's something I'm good at, and everyone needs a talent."

Friday, April 16, 2010

Hard At Work. Really.

Not drooling over things in the Anthroplogie website.

Like these....

Or lovely things on the JCrew website....

No, really. I'm working.
Its a beautiful Friday afternoon in April.
And I'm focused entirely on the research in front of me.

I swear.

Monday, April 12, 2010

"Stop quoting Tennyson...."

"... and fucking spill it, Jessica. I know you have some good shit to share on your blog."

Thank you, Dr. Gatewood.

My darling, brutally honest, eloquently filthy and charming boy.... what can I share with my blog readers that they don't already suspect of me, but not all of them may want to see in writing?

A few topics come to mind:

~ My social life. Because I do seem to have one, after all. Somehow, my free time is not entirely spent with the cat, the new TV and the interwebz as much anymore. But I think I'm more likely to tag my friends (or be tagged) in a Tweet about how we're a collective #hotmess than I am to sit down and write about it afterward. Still, there are more mimosa-filled brunches, dinners with coworkers, unexpected shopping trips, outings to the Mall, and afternoons spent getting accidentally sunburned with friends over beer than there have been for several months.  Perhaps they should be recorded for posterity.

~ Dating and/or sex.  This area of my life still seems too intimate for these virtual pages, maybe because I have only recently begun to venture back into the world of heterosexual relationships. I have the sense that once I have something more substantial (and more specific) to say than "I think this could be fun", I'll expand on this topic. 

~ My family. Nah, you don't need to hear about the details of my relationship with my slightly-overprotective, wonderfully generous, stereotypically-Jewish-on-occasion parents. (Or do you? They can be awfully entertaining... Maybe this is another area in which I should think about sharing more.) In the meantime, you can follow my amazing sister on Twitter, and read her blog(s) if you want to know about her life and times; among other things, she's an artist, a poet, a comedienne, a musician, a cat-lover, besides being the most genetically-similar person to me on the planet.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.”

~ Charles W. Eliot

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Walk and/or Run

~ The Cherry Blossom 5K Walk/Run is this Sunday. While the prospect of running 10 miles terrified me, the idea of a fast-paced walk for 3 and a half miles (give or take a few decimal points) on a beautiful Spring morning is far less daunting. (Wish me luck!)

~ I think know that I'm getting crankier about tourists in DC with each passing year. I know they're good for the local economy, I know they're just trying to enjoy our Nation's Capitol during a beautiful time of year. But could they at least be polite? Don't they realize that people actually live and work in this city -- and need to ride the Metro system to do so -- all year round?  I overheard a man riding the Red Line complaining loudly to his friends/family/fellow touristas: "OhmyGAWD, the New YORK subway system is so much EASIER to navigate! What the hell is with this city?" I found it hard not to turn in my seat and respond "Well, then why don't you go back there?"

~ In general, though, I'm much less of a cranky/emo bitch. I had a feeling that things would get easier once the record-setting snow had melted, the sun started to shine more often and the flowers began to blossom. And .... well, it has. 

~ If you need motivation, moral support as you try to get into shape, find a workout routine that works for you, or just want to know that you're not alone in the struggle to fit into that adorable dress that you used to look really cute in two summers ago, I highly suggest reading In It To Gym It 

Monday, April 5, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“You have to have confidence in your ability, and then be tough enough to follow through.”

~ Rosalynn Carter

Monday, March 29, 2010

My Recent Adventures

Work has kept me incredibly busy this past two weeks. It has felt as if every possible job that I usually do has been multiplied by 10, and that new responsibilities  have been added on at an astonishing rate. Not to mention the "other duties as assigned" that tend to make their inevitable presence known in my job description whenever things are at their busiest.  This is all to say that lately, it has been, in every way, shape, and form, a Non Profit Paradise.

But I've had some fun, as well.

Last weekend, I had the unique pleasure of escorting a college friend to a military ball...

Okay, more details are needed before I continue:
~ It was the annual Air Force Charity Ball
~ I attended a women's college, so my hot date was my friend M (whom, you will see, is quite hot)
~ M invited me to attend this event with her because her brother wasn't available, and her family gets a ticket for each member of the family (her father was in the Air Force)


This was a black tie event. Which threw me into a tizzy because, despite all of the dresses that I own -- DVF wrap dresses, cocktail dresses, "tropical casual" dresses (and I didn't know they were called that until I had to go to a wedding in St. Kitts last summer), and countless sundresses -- I didn't have anything that was black-tie-appropriate. Besides old bridesmaid dresses, and I really, really didn't want to wear any of those.

So, first things first: M and I went dress shopping. I found an amazing dress for a mere $75. Then I had to spend about the same amount getting it tailored. But, in the end, I think it was worth it:

attempting to look sweet and innocent

M and I on our way out the door:

We drank champagne, we danced, we were flirted with by (much older and unavailable) men in uniform, we snickered at awful outfits (worn by the wives of these aforementioned unavailable men in uniform), we ate a huge meal, and ultimately, a grand time was had by all.

Then, a few days later, I decided to chop my hair off:

I'm surprised at how much I love it - it's a huge difference, as you can tell. But I'm getting used to it and am thrilled at how many positive reactions I'm getting to my new 'do. Although I've been told everything from "wow, you look amazing!" from various friends, to "my my, don't you look all grown up now - don't you feel grown up?!" (ummmm ...) to "....can I see you sometime soon?" from a guy I used to date (ha!).

And, at long last, it has finally become my favorite time of year: Spring. And in Washington, it means it's cherry blossom season.  I spent most of this past Saturday afternoon at the Tidal Basin with my friend F and her son.  Granted, it was not nearly as warm as I'd like it to be (I swear, I'll stop bitching about the weather .... eventually) but it was wonderful to see all of the trees starting to come into bloom:

This is but one of a few dozen photos I took on Saturday, of the trees, Monuments and Kite Festival -- I will share more later on!

Back to the grind. Happy Passover, everyone :)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“Friendship, love, health, energy, enthusiasm, and joy are the things that make life worth living and exploring.”

~ Denise Austin

Monday, March 22, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“Anything I’ve ever done that ultimately was worthwhile... initially scared me to death.”

~ Betty Bende

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Quote Of The Day

"Unless we know people well, we sit around with our words and our minds starched, afraid of being ourselves for fear of wrinkling them."

~ Budd Schulberg

Monday, March 15, 2010

Used To Be

From a list of Creative Writing Exercises to Cure Writers Block, I shall now attempt the following experiment:
Write a poem with each line filling in the blanks of "I used to be _____ but now I am ______." (This may not be a poem, though. So sue me.)

I used to be a girl who hated wearing skirts, but now I am a woman who prefers dresses.

I used to be afraid of asking other people for help, but now I am okay knowing that  I can't do everything alone.

I used to be someone who whined about her broken TV, but now I am someone who loves her new HDTV (...even though I've only had it for three days... and still need to figure out my DVR....)

I used to be convinced that I would be a reporter for a newspaper or magazine, but now I am a public health educator.

I used to think there were things in life that I would never be able to do, but now I am of the belief that I can do any damn thing that I decide to do.

I used to be worried about what people thought of me when I opened my mouth, scribbled a sentence, shared my opinion or simply left the house in the morning, but now I am someone who dresses, speaks and writes with confidence (99% of the time).

I used to be terrified of change, but now I am opening up to new suggestions and ready to welcome new experiences. (And I hope this feeling lasts.)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Happy 101 Award

This is my first blog award! I'm really and truly honored! Many, many thanks to the amazing Pure Gold Lady for giving me this award. She's an inspiring woman and an excellent writer, so go check out her blog if you haven't already! (And if you have already....well, go back and do it again.)

This award comes with the following rules, which I am pleased to follow:
1. When you receive this award you must thank the person that awarded you this in the new post.
2. Name 10 things that make you happy.
3. Pass the award on to 10 other bloggers and inform the winners.

10 Things That Make Me Happy
1. Reading
2. Writing
3. Being outside on a warm spring day
4. Taking a nap
5. A good glass of white wine
6. Laughing
7. Goofing off with my friends
8. Good hair days
9. Spending time with my sister
10. My wonderful, silly cat (and yes, of course I had to include Stormy in this list)

The 10 Bloggers To Whom I Am Passing This Award
1. Jessph @ Consume or Consumed
2. PrincessQ @ DCPrincessQ
3. Ali @ Holden It Together
4. Doctor G @ Memoirs from a Mind on Fire
5. May @ mayk all day every day.
6. Flan @ La Bonne Flaneuse
7. Rachel @ RachelSmiles
8. Maxie @ i hate so much...
9. FloridaGirlinDC @ adventures of a florida girl in dc...
10. LiLu @ Livit, Luvit

I'm awarding these bloggers because some have made me laugh; others have made me think; and still others have made me envy their closets. But all of them have inspired me and my blogging.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


This post originally started as musings on the beautiful, springlike weather that we've had for the past few days. I was rhapsodizing about the sunshine, 50 to 60 degree temperatures, and the feeling that winter was almost over. I looked for photos of the cherry blossoms around the Tidal Basin and through my own photos of springtimes past in and around DC.

Then I got distracted by work (funny thing about that) and by the time I came back to this post, I was unimpressed with what I'd written. And my usual routine of "work is busy but that's good, where's my new TV, I'm a crazy cat lady, wish I liked to exercise more" just was not going to cut it. Yes, I'm relentlessly self-editing -- but really,  if it's not entertaining to me, it's definitely not going to be entertaining to you.

I think what I need more than anything else is a re-reading of one of my very favorite books, Eloise, by Kay Thompson.

Maybe that will help me clear my head, and help me come up with something creative to share....

Quote Of The Day

"Be vigilant; guard your mind against negative thoughts. Pull yourself out of bad ways as an elephant raises itself out of the mud."

~ Eknath Easwaran

Monday, March 8, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“A strong positive mental attitude will create more miracles than any wonder drug.”

~ Patricia Neal

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“Don’t compromise yourself.  You’re all you’ve got.”

~ Janis Joplin

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Single Gal

So, there was a time, not too long ago, when I was in a relationship. That ended, rather abruptly, last October.

The grisly details are not worth sharing. It's enough to say that it was unexpected and I was left heartbroken.  And I still am, in some ways.

I've avoided writing about it directly here because, for a while, the breakup was too painful to think about, let alone write about. It was as if there was a part of me that didn't want to acknowledge that it was over - not because I wanted to pretend I still had a boyfriend, but it was almost as if ... well, if I didn't write about it here, I could just focus on life as Me, Moving Forward.

Not to mention the fact that I felt as though I was spending enough time on Twitter (and in my personal journal, and on my therapist's couch, and into the ears of my friends and family, and the occasional coworker) going over what had happened to me. I gained a great deal of inspiration from fellow blogger Pure Gold Lady -- she's an amazing woman who writes beautifully and candidly about her life, moving forward, after a painful breakup.

But now, enough time has passed that I don't constantly ache. I don't feel like an open wound. I'm not having panic attacks at the idea of leaving my apartment. I'm slowly but surely, moving forward in my life. This has been a long process - and one that is not quite complete - that has included drowning myself in work, getting a body piercing, reading a lot, letting myself stay at home and cry once in a while, and constantly reminding myself that I'm doing okay.

And... I'm doing okay.


Monday, March 1, 2010

My Florida Vacation, by Jess

While Dr. Mom was (ostensibly) attending a conference, here's what I did for the past five days
(in no particular order):
~ slept a lot
~ drank various rum-based concoctions
 One such concoction

~ read "The Postmistress" and started "Grapes of Wrath"
~ sat on the beach
Windy but gawgeous
~ bought new sunglasses
~ made friends with the bartenders on the beach, at the pool and in the main hotel bar
~ bonded with my mom
~ argued with my mom
~ took lots of photos
Back deck of the hotel 
~ got a sunburn
~ ate a lot, including a fantastic Cuban lunch with my friend R
~ heard Desmond Tutu speak (he was amazing)
~ bought an absurd amount of chocolate at a local candy store
~ attended receptions with my mom and drank cheap white wine
~ watched TV (still have no TV at home, so yes, this was a treat)

Here's what I didn't do:
~ go on a Twitter/email/text message vacation
~ exercise
~ miss the cold weather in DC

It's a good thing I checked my email, because there was still an absurd amount waiting for me when I got back to the office. And I needed to be able to access Twitter constantly because.... because I say so, okay?

I have no excuse as to why I did not exercise.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

In Which I Gush

Friday night, I went to a fantastic happy hour, where I met (and got drunk with) a few dozen DC-area bloggers and/or Twitter addicts. I started off feeling self-conscious and anxious: I was exhausted from this week and, as a result, was super-ADHD; of this whole group, I only knew DC Princess (but what a wonderful person to know - read her post on attending such a gathering for the first time); and I don't consider myself a blogger of the same caliber as some of these incredible writers....*cough* ihatesomuch *cough* Livit, Luvit .... sorry something in my throat.

But as the evening tipsily progressed, I found myself increasingly comfortable -- yes, the drinks helped, but this group was so welcoming, and everyone was happy for the chance to see each other and make new friends. Plus, I wasn't the only gushing, new-to-blogging girl there.

I woke up the next morning with a bit of a headache, along with new Twitter friend requests, new contacts in my phone, business cards in my jeans (and bra, of course) and silly photos in my camera. In my humble opinion, #DCHH was a huge success.

Now it's Sunday night. I need to attempt productivity. This will take the form of packing for Florida, and cleaning the apartment so my father doesn't know how much of a degenerate I really am when he comes to feed Stormy this week.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Mental Exercise

"There is no snooze button on a hungry cat." ~ Twitter friend whosthatgirl2

Stormy has the uncanny ability (this week, at least) to wake me up approximately 10 minutes before my alarm goes off.  His methods vary, but his latest is jumping up about 5 feet vertically to attack a spot on the wall and loudly landing with a thump and the feline eqivalent of an "OOF". Repeatedly.

Sure, waking up at 6.45 isn't too bad -- but I had another night in which it took a while to stop the litany of items marching in circles in my head. It went a little  something like this:

Never going to be in shape in time for the run - but that's okay, I don't have to be in the run - I would hate to disappoint anyone - Nobody to disappoint, need to focus on what's right for me - Okay, when am I getting the TV from the parents and how - Maybe if I dug my car out - But I don't have a shovel and don't really need to have the car dug out - They said they could help deliver the TV - But what about disposing of the TV - Will have to email building manager again to find out - I hope my car still starts whenever I do start it - But she's a VW, she'll start -  I'll walk to my appointment after work tomorrow - Which shoes do I wear - Roads near me and work are okay, I could wear my heeled boots - But there are still slushy parts and I don't want to ruin the boots - I could wear my hiking boots and carry the heels - Maybe wear pants for a change - I wonder if the site developers fixed that part of the website that was acting strangely - I'll have an email from them about that in the morning or will have to email them - I need to pack for the trip next week - I hope I look okay in a bathing suit ....  [REPEAT]

If I were as physically active as I am mentally, I'd be in peak condition.

On that note, it's time to hit the showers. One thing I forgot to worry about last night:  I have my midyear performance review today.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Quote Of The Day

"Approach a goat from the back, a horse from the front, and a stupid man from no direction whatsoever."

~ Yiddish Folk Saying

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.”


Thursday, February 11, 2010

Quote of The Day

"The events of life are mainly small events - they only seem large when we are close to them."

~ Mark Twain

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

#snOMG #snOVERIT #snopacalypse

Last Thursday, I left work early - I wasn't feeling too well and was croaking like a frog, which didn't sound too good. As a massive winter storm was approaching, my father took pity on me and brought groceries and medication to my apartment. (I am lucky, spoiled and blessed. I know it.)

The storm hit on Friday and the office closed at noon that day. It hasn't reopened since, as a result of the series of snowstorms that have come through the DC area.

In the past week, I've been able to recover from my cold and catch up on much-needed sleep. I've almost finished reading Bonk, by Mary Roach - which I highly recommend - and have been working on a John Irving novel, as well. My TV died over the weekend, so I've become a bit of a Hulu and youtube addict. And my usual Twitter activities have multiplied (hence the hashtag'd title of this post). I also uncovered some of my favorite Beethoven CD's from college and have been playing them in my ancient stereo. (How retro of me, I know...)

I have been out in my neighborhood to make purchases that I didn't want to request of my doting father - namely, a stop at the liquor store - and have been able to spend time with some of my friends on two occasions. I've even taken care of some work emails.

Dupont Metro 2/09/10

This is all to say that, somehow, I have not gotten cabin fever. As someone who has dealt with loneliness and anxiety in increasing amounts over the past few months, I am pleasantly surprised at how happy I have been this past week. Being sick frustrated me, but knowing that I wasn't going to be able to go to work, anyhow, made it easier for me to give up and let myself... well, be sick. Perhaps I should have taken the time to find out whether or not my gym has been open, but since I've been feeling better, this time off has felt too much like a holiday for that kind of nonsense. (Says the girl with how many weeks until the 10 miler? OY.)

 what would i do without my friends??

Of course, having Stormy here has helped enormously.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Quote Of The Day

“Remember, we all stumble, every one of us. That’s why it’s a comfort to go hand in hand.”

~ Emily Kimbrough

Friday, January 29, 2010

Just Another Week In Paradise

Last Saturday night, I got a voicemail from my "friend" who I spent New Year's Eve with - you know, the one who brought a stranger back to my place at 5AM. Her message was: "Hi Jess... listen, I'm sorry that, um, you're mad at me."

Of course she's sorry that I'm mad at her - I bet it really fucking sucks that I'm mad at her! She can't get away from her parents, get drunk and crash at my place anymore.

That was not an apology.

Sunday, I went out to dinner with my parents. There was an issue with my mother's meal; a manager came to talk with her and ended up speaking to my mom as if she were a whiny brat, rather than a respectable, regular customer whose ahi tuna had been undercooked.

Let me say here that I have absolutely no tolerance for anyone who mistreats my family. I've written before that I'm a good friend to the point of being a doormat; by contrast, I am fiercely defensive and extremely protective of my parents and sister.  So, I was furious.  I could barely contain myself during their "conversation".

To make a long story short, I went and talked to that manager after our meal. I ended up tearing her a new one, telling her how "inappropriate, rude and utterly unprofessional" she had behaved. I told her she should be ashamed of herself for treating her customers with such disrespect. I watched her staff gather off to the side during this exchange. I don't know if they were watching in pity or awe. But I think may have made her cry.

.... I think I've had some tension and frustration building up in me for a while.

I also joined a gym on Sunday (FINALLY!), so on Monday, I went to exercise after work. For someone who hasn't exercised in months, spending 30 minutes on a combination of the treadmill and elliptical felt exhilarating.... Until I got home. My shins were on fire. My shoulders hurt (how did I hurt my shoulder? I wasn't even using the arm exercisers on the elliptical!) I told a friend that I felt like I'd crippled myself. It's Friday and I still feel sore. I think I'm going to take it easier next time.

Overall, this week has been ridiculously busy -- and, as I've said before, I've loved it. I'm starting to think I might be a workaholic (along with a shopaholic and chocoholic). But I'm glad it's Friday.

I'm also going to share with you my OOTD (that's Outfit Of The Day, kids) because I successfully used a new technique: Putting my camera on the bookshelf and using the timer! And I like the lighting. However, I was caught mid-smirk, so I look a little.... well, you can see for yourself:

Thursday, January 28, 2010

No Smoking!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Quote Of The Day

"Waste your money and you're only out of money, but waste your time and you've lost a part of your life."

~Michael Leboeuf

Monday, January 25, 2010

Quote Of The Day

"Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening."

~ Coco Chanel

Thursday, January 21, 2010

DVF Volante

One of the many wonderful things about is that the members of the community are exceedingly generous. This includes the fact that we sell each other gently-used clothing - including DVF's - for generous prices.

Okay, enough dithering - here's my new beauty, with many thanks to the fabulous Marina, a woman who I admire and respect enormously:

(Please excuse the messy hair)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Back to the Grind

~ Family trip to Boston was, overall, wonderful.  My sister now has her MFA, and I cried like the proud big sister that I am at the ceremony. I saw her perform (she plays a mean uke) and heard her read some poems from her thesis. We had some quality time together, as well. She had wonderful thoughts and advice to share, and I still get a thrill to see how she lives the life she has created - I mean, it's like we're really grownups, or something. I also spent an afternoon with my friend D and her beautiful children.

~ The MLK holiday gave me a day to reconnoiter myself before going back to work. And to make sure the cat (who was, of course, perfectly and attentively cared for by my friends) wasn't going to exact some revenge on me. And, hooray, my new boots arrived!

~ The extra day also resulted in my getting food poisoning, which required a(nother) day off from work. I'll spare the details; I'm fine now. Stormy seemed delighted to have me around for another full day, even if I spent most of it asleep. (Or maybe because I spent it asleep?)

~ Back at work today, I've been sifting through a week's worth of email, and scanning notes from meetings that I missed. A week? Really? It wasn't until this morning that I realized: I don't remember when I last went on a vacation that was more than a long weekend.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Quote of The Day

“Happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn’t know you left open.”

~ John Barrymore

Monday, January 11, 2010

Attempting to Focus

... but since I seem unable to do so at the moment, lets take a look at what's distracting me today:

~ I need to join a gym. I'm going to be running/walking/dragging in a marathon  a ten-miler in April and I'm in awful shape, so I need to get moving. I can't even handle the thought of running outside right now, in this sub-zero weather, so a gym membership it is.

~ My sister's graduation is looming (something that I know must be much more distracting to her than me), and my family will be spending four days in Boston for celebrations, performances, ceremonies, and the like. I'm excited to see her and for this tremendous occasion. I just need to get myself packed for the trip - which I always tend to make more difficult than it should be.

~ I need to stop worrying about how my cat will do for a few days without me. I currently have the following internal dialog on repeat: Stormy will be fine; M. will check on him daily; he will be okay; the apartment might be destroyed when I get back, but he'll be fine. I've already admitted to being a crazy cat lady on this blog, as well as tending towards anxious and obsessive you see what happens when it all comes together.

~ I ordered two new pairs of boots last night, and they'd be perfect for this trip, but they probably won't arrive in time. (sniffle) I'll just have to do my best to look cute and stay warm with what I currently own.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Out With The Old

I'd originally started this post as a recap of my New Year's Eve adventures. But, unfortunately, much of the 'adventure' was the result of someone taking advantage of my generous nature. Okay, my generously-close-to-pushover nature.

That's not to say I didn't have a good time at all -- I was determined to enjoy sending 2009 on its way, and I certainly did! But thinking over everything that happened brought me to a simple conclusion, one more important for me to record than the events that lead to it: I deserve the best.

This is a horribly cheesy line. It's used in commercials. This is something that I've said to justify an expensive purchase (I look fabulous in this dress and really, I do deserve the best... ). But this is also something my mother has told me over and over, as is often the wont of Jewish mothers, and mothers in general.

And it's the truth, and I now feel it strongly. I deserve friends who won't take advantage of me.

Quote Of The Day

"One resolution I have made, and try always to keep, is this: to rise above the little things."

~ John Burroughs