Monday, July 31, 2006

My Civic Duty

I was on call for jury duty all last week, and finally got called in to serve on Friday. I was a bit groggy from Thursday night (which was awesome by the way) and didn’t remember I still had to call in to see if I had to report until about 7:45. At which point I learned I had to report to the County Court in freakin’ Hollywood at 8:45. Needless to say I was late. I hate driving to Hollywood, most aggravating traffic in all of LA as far as I’m concerned. I’d rather drive downtown. And guess what I did all day? That’s right, absolutely nothing! Going on very little sleep from two nights in a row at the Roxy I was in no mood to sit next to a smelly stranger and wait for nothing to happen. Could have been worse, at least I didn’t actually have to serve on a jury and only one day of my time was wasted.

I finally saw Pirates of the Caribbean last night. I love Johnny Depp, I have ever since Edward Scissorhands. I enjoyed the movie, great CG animation and physical comedy as well. Can’t wait for Pirates 3! I also caught The Aviator on DVD this weekend. A bit long, but enjoyable enough.

So many people in my office are out of town this week it’s like a ghost town around here. I’m sleepy, it’s Monday, and food I left in the fridge last week is gone so I will be forced to venture outward and find lunch later. *sigh*

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Happy Birthday

to the one I love!

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Hope your birthday is as sweet as you are.

We went and saw moe. at the Roxy last night and will be seeing them again in celebration of Jason's birthday tonight. I am going to be one pooped out girl on Friday, but it's so worth it. moe. rocks!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

It’s Electric!

Last Saturday was the big to do party of the year for the non-prof I work for. It’s on the lot of Paramount studios, and it was so mad hot I thought I would melt right onto the asphalt before the party even got started. I shouldn’t complain too much, I didn’t have to show up until 4:30 in the afternoon and some of the event staff and volunteers had been there since 8am! I would have died.

I was stuck at the VIP red carpet area until about 9. There was some lightning going on, we were afraid it was gonna rain on our party but we lucked out. After I finished my shift I was free to roam the party with Jason and see the live music. So, the exciting part: I saw Deborah Gibson! (don’t you dare call her Debbie). Yes, the famed pop princess performed “Shake Your Love”, “Electric Youth”, and some other jazzy Broadway type numbers. This girl has still got the pipes and the spunk.

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And now, the magic.

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Deborah Gibson and Jordan Knight, yes that Jordan Knight, sing the duet “Say Goodbye” together for the first time ever. If I had my pick of any NKOTB member I totally would have voted Joey, but this was still exciting for the nostalgia factor if nothing else. I’m not going to say the performance was spectacular or anything, Simon Cowell would have taken Jordan down, but it was still fun.

Now give me some Sugar!

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That’s Mark McGrath of Sugar Ray. He was pretty hot…I mean sweaty of course ;) And seemed a little drunk. But this was a fun performance as well.

There was an auction, and dancing, and I did the “Smirnoff Experience”. A fun night, but I felt so sorry for the people that had to work all day on this thing, I got off pretty easy. I’m glad this only happens once a year because it’s exhausting.

Friday, July 21, 2006

My man is the best man

Here's a few shots from the wedding last weekend. I have so much red eye removal to do it's not even funny, it's in pretty much every picture. Oh, the magic of Photoshop.

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That's the beautiful bride, Ilene, and the dashing groom, Max.

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Jason and me in the lobby of the reception hall

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Jason looking muy caliente in his tux.

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Mmm, cake.

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And that's me and the groom hanging out (aka "drinking") at the hotel after the rehearsal dinner.

Much fun was had by all. Mazel Tov to the bride and groom!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Am I missing something?

The weekend was just beautiful and Jason and I had a lovely time visiting his family back east and attending the wedding of his best friend since the tender age of 13. Jason looked so debonair in his tux (pictures are coming), and his toast was short, sweet and a big hit. I think the bride and groom will have many happy years ahead of them. L’Chaim!

A few conversations this weekend (with persons who shall remain anonymous) got me to thinking about a topic that seems to be one of those “big” decisions in life. That is, to procreate, or not to procreate, that is the question. I have always leaned more towards the “not” in regard to that question. I realize I am only 26 and I very well might feel differently about that at 46, but let’s just say I am firmly in the “no babies” camp for at least the foreseeable future with the possibility of extending that to forever. I find it very interesting how so many people find that position so incredibly odd, some even seem to think there must surely be something wrong with me. I mean, throughout much of human history having children may have been pretty much the sole aspiration for most women, but aren’t we past that now? I thought what with women being allowed out of the house to attain education and hold employment and own property and all that jazz, that maybe we could let go of that whole barefoot and pregnant thing. Of course I’m being tongue in cheek here and I certainly don’t begrudge anyone their right to have as many children as they want so long as they will provide and care for those children financially/emotionally/intellectually/spiritually/etc. In fact, I am glad so many people seem to find themselves up to the task because I find it so mind-blowingly frightening that I’m not sure it’s something I will ever want to attempt. If populating the world were up to me, extinction would be a distinct possibility.

I know there are positives to having children (from what I hear). The pride and joy you feel in nurturing this little being and seeing them grow, and reliving childhood through their eyes, and someone to look out for you in your golden years, and yadda yadda yadda. I know there are parents out there that seem to define their very own existence by their children, and who seem very happy about that. And to be honest, that scares the living crap out of me. Oh, and let’s not forget about the actual process where you have to carry another human being around inside of you and then it actually has to come out of you in the well known and none too pleasant ways of childbirth. It is safe to say if I ever do find my maternal instincts and decide I want to raise a little person, I will be adopting.

I am not ready to put someone else before me at all times, no matter what. I want to do what I want to do when I want to do it. Once you have a blessed bundle of joy, all that goes right out the window. I guess I admire people who seem so willing to give it all up, and I guess I don’t understand it either. Am I missing something? Perhaps I’ll never know.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

When in doubt…

Post one of these fun little quizzes. Thanks Val!

All-Around Smart

You are all-around smart. Essentially, that means that you are a good combination of your own knowledge and experience, along with having learned through instruction - and you are equally as good with theoretical things as you are with real-world, applied things. You have a well-rounded brain.

20% theoretical intelligence
20% learned intelligence

Take this quiz at

I’m so well rounded. Or as my father calls me, “multi-talented”. But I sure as hell am math stupid. Physics, chemistry, and population genetics were never my forte either, but that is mostly because of their involvement with The Math. Oh, except for Geometry, I got an A in that because there are pictures :)

We are taking the red eye tonight to BWI and driving up to Philly on Saturday to attend the wedding of Jason’s best friend from high school. He’s the best man! He’ll be wearing a monkey suit. Of course there will be pictures, silly! Hope everyone has a fantastic weekend. I will be fighting the humidity and hair frizz, eating and drinking too much, and making merry all around. Ciao!

Friday, July 07, 2006


I might be the last person on earth to get around to checking out youtube. Now I even have my own account and can post video on my blog! How exciting! Well, the content isn't really, so you'll just have to settle for Dexter as entertainment for now. This was taken with my digital camera so it's not top quality, but you get the idea. Enjoy!

You're my obsession

Trader Joe's. I can't go in this place and not leave with more than I came for. Case and point, this is what I walked out with today after I went in looking for about 5 items. Mind you my last trip to TJ's was 2 days ago.

28 oz can organic diced tomatoes
tandoori naan curry bread
15 oz can garbanzo beans
quart nonfat plain yogurt
organic firm tofu
frozen organic broccoli florets
2 bottles champagne pear vinaigrette
4 pack of nectarines
2 1 lb packages of red cherries
5 organic bananas
dutch yellow potatoes
whole wheat english muffins
frozen tropical fruit trio (mango, papaya, and pineapple)
organic whole wheat rotelle pasta
shirataki tofu noodles
unsweetened applesauce
21 seasoning salute blend

I did all that damage in about only 10 minutes, and fit it all in one of those little baskets believe it or not. I just had one of the nectarines, it was pure nectar drenched heaven. My favorite find was the cherries at just $3.79/lb! That's less than the farmer's market. We skewered and grilled some of those baby dutch yellow potatoes a couple of nights ago, coated in a mixture of olive oil, fresh rosemary, garlic, salt and pepper. The were very good, I love how things taste when you gill them. One product TJ's really needs to start carrying is soygurt, I'm not completely off the dairy so I prefer to just pick up yogurt at TJ's instead of making a special trip to Whole Foods for "just 1 thing" and leaving $30 later. I'll write them an e-mail and all you other TJ shoppers should do the same.

Here's a shot of the veg skewers from our 4th of July cookout. They were OK, but could have used some more seasoning, or perhaps should have been marinated before grilling. Just Morningstar Farms veggie dogs and burgers and chips and the like to go with these, nothing fancy or worth photographing.

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Pancakes, stir fry, and produce, oh my!

I made these flax berry pancakes for the first time in a while. I made them with whole wheat pastry flour and frozen blueberries since that's what I had on hand. Jason made his with bananas and chocolate chips instead of berries. They are super tasty and easy.

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I like mine topped with a few extra berries, unsweetened applesauce and a drizzle of organic maple syrup.

This is just a super easy stir fry, but it was so photogenic I thought I'd share.

I sauteed some veggies in light oil.

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I tried the tofu trick where you freeze it and press out the water while it defrosts. It makes the tofu spongy in texture and it really soaks up that sauce! I rather like it. I used a new flavor of Soy Vay sauce.

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Over a bit of brown rice this is a quick and tasty dinner.

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This orange reminded me of how naval oranges got their name. I think this one's a outie.

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Cherries! Oh, how I love thee. I got these at the Koreatown farmer's market. They didn't last long after this picture was taken.

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Dog Day Afternoon

Dexter is in training to get his Canine Good Citizen certificate from the AKC, so we decided to take him to the park last Saturday to work on his skills.

Dexter waited patiently for dad to get ready so we could go.

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Until I saw this picture I didn't realize what a tool I look like when I'm out walking the dog. Maybe it's the treat bag thing hanging out around my crotch.

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His little backpack has detachable saddlebags. It was pretty hot out, you can see he looked pretty happy to take the load off.

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Other people and dogs serve as distraction.

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Look at that heel, just gorgeous!

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He was so good we let him have some free time to play with the other dogs as a reward.

In closing here's a couple of random shots of this adorable kid I saw at the beach last Sunday. He looked like he was having so much fun running around in his big floppy hat.

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Thursday, July 06, 2006

100 things

I’ve finally gotten around to this “100 things” business. It wasn’t nearly as difficult as I thought it would be to come up with 100 things. You should try it sometime when you’re bored and in the mood for navel gazing. I’m linking this in the sidebar for posterity. Without further ado, way more personal information than you ever wanted to know about me:

1. I am from the great state of Wisconsin, town of Hudson (not so great).

2. I haven’t eaten animal flesh since 1994.

3. I secretly find most children annoying. Except yours, yours are great.

4. I started taking swimming lessons when I was 3 years old.

5. I love my dog more than is probably healthy.

6. One of my greatest wishes is for my dog to be cured of his separation anxiety. It really makes life difficult and I fear he will get us evicted and leave us homeless someday.

7. I appear very tolerant and polite on the surface, but I am very judgmental of stupid and ignorant people.

8. I’ve been a manager at two different DC area restaurants.

9. I love pizza more than any person should.

10. I feel guilty about loving cheese so damn much. I wish I could just let it go…

11. I wish I was a vegan, but I’m too lazy and I love cheese too much to be 100% vegan, so I settle for about 75%.

12. I settle a lot. With myself.

13. I am deeply afraid of failure.

14. I deal with my fear of failure by not trying very hard most of the time (see item 12).

15. I love being outdoors with the nature but I live in Los Angeles.

16. I love beer.

17. I will not apologize for my love of beer. It is my birthright (see item 1).

18. I was an artificial redhead in my college years.

19. I graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Madison in December of 2002 with a BA; Major: Communication Arts, Concentration in Broadcasting and Film.

20. I currently work in non-profit development.

22. College really was the best time of my life. I will be surprised if anything in the future tops it.

23. I am already disillusioned by the working world.

24. My birthday is January 29, 1980.

25. I am an Aquarius.

26. I have no idea what my zodiac sign says about me or anyone else and I don’t particularly put much stock in astrology.

27. I was raised Catholic and was confirmed at the age of 17.

28. I went to a Catholic school K-8.

29. I deeply resent items 27 and 28.

30. I enjoy many Broadway musicals.

31. I have participated in several school/community/amateur musical productions.

32. I used to be able to sing really well.

33. I am kind of sad that I gave up singing (see item 14).

34. I used to play the clarinet.

35. I really wanted to play the cello but our schools didn’t have an orchestra program.

37. I am math retarded.

36. I have numeric dyslexia.

38. I am one of five children. I have an older brother and 2 younger sisters and a younger brother. The youngest girl and boy are twins.

39. I was a Star Trek geek in high school.

40. At one time in my life I weighed nearly 220 pounds (see items 9 and 16).

41. I weigh a lot less than that now.

42. I am 5 feet 4 inches tall.

43. My boyfriend (I guess you call them a “significant other” at some point? What’s in a name?) and I have been together since April of 2001. I love him lots because we are both the same brand of crazy.

44. I met my boyfriend sometime in 1999.

45. Neither of us clearly remembers when/which our first meeting was.

46. I had three successive disastrous relationships during my college years, each lasting just under a year. Live and learn.

47. I am bad with money/finances.

48. I love the ocean.

49. I wish I knew how to surf.

50. I love Los Angeles for it’s proximity to the ocean, the weather, the availability of Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and vegetarian/vegan restaurants.

51. I hate almost everything else about Los Angeles.

52. I don’t understand why women still change their last name when they get married.

53. I hate flossing, and have the dental record to prove it.

54. I hate pickles more than any other single food item (excepting animal flesh of course). I also dislike pickled things in general and radishes and celery.

55. I love black olives but dislike green olives.

56. I think I should have had a career in some sort of biological sciences field, but I got too grossed out by dissection labs.

57. Sometimes it looks like I’m listening when I’m really not.

58. Sometimes I am just as surprised as the other person when it is evident I didn’t hear a word they said.

59. My mind wanders a lot.

60. I’ve never done any drugs that involve a needle or go up your nose.

61. I enjoy doing yoga.

62. I hate wearing heels so much that the closest thing I own is a pair of black boots with a 2’’ wedge heel.

63. I don’t wear those boots very often because they make my toes numb.

64. I love Teva sandals.

65. I dislike getting dressed up.

66. I can make really good “special” baked goods.

67. I am addicted to blogging and the external validation it brings.

68. My self esteem used to really suck.

69. My self esteem is much better now.

70. I studied abroad in Laitila, Finland my junior year of high school, it was one of the best things I ever did.

71. I love rollercoasters and thrill rides.

72. In June of 1997 I went on a three week tour of Europe with a 3 bus caravan full of exchange students.

73. I did some stupid and crazy shit on that trip and it is one of the most memorable experiences of my life (the parts of it I remember, that is.)

74. I have a problem with authority and being told what to do.

75. I took 21 credits of Finnish language in my freshman and sophomore years of college.

76. I never did have that good of a handle on the Finnish language.

77. At one point or another in my education I have also studied French, German, Swedish, and Russian.

78. I am only functionally literate in English (even that is questionable some days).

79. At least I can count to 10 in five different languages.

80. My surname is Finnish.

81. My family lineage also includes Swedes, Norwegians and Germans.

82. I am big boned (no really, I am).

83. I use profanity sometimes.

84. I almost never wear make-up.

85. I love watching shows on Animal Planet, National Geographic Channel, Discovery, and PBS. (Did someone say TiVo addict?)

86. My parents still live in the house I grew up in.

87. I will never buy expensive watches or sunglasses because I always lose or break them.

88. I am a messy slob.

89. I am torn between my materialistic desires and my hippy-dippy communist ideals.

90. Sometimes I think about all the unimaginable pain and suffering that is going on in the world at any given time.

91. Thinking about that makes me feel really depressed and helpless.

92. I stopped listening to the NPR news every morning because of items 90 and 91.

93. I listen to the Adam Carolla show instead.

94. I can’t imagine having children. I am just that selfish.

95. I have blue eyes.

96. I really want to play guitar so I can be a famous folk artist, but my left hand is retarded.

97. I feel like my friends know me better than my parents do.

98. I think Madison, WI is the most wonderful place to live and I fantasize about moving back there sometimes.

99. I went to the Phish festival in Coventry, Vermont in August of 2004. We hiked 15 miles with camping gear to get to a music festival after flying from LA to Boston, driving to Vermont and spending upwards of 20 hours in a car overnight sitting in traffic that moved a total of 3 miles while we were in it. There were extenuating circumstances I won’t get into. Yeah, we were hard core like that.

100. I think the world would be a better place if everyone would just do things my way.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Bitching and Moaning

I am at work today. It sucks. I was having a lovely weekend and was not ready for it to end. And it doesn’t help that most people I know are not at work today and are having fun without me. At least I have yoga and Superman to look forward to tonight.