Monday, March 13, 2006

Old Versus Never Old: The Battle

Things That Never Get Old While You're On Vacation:

1.) Hearing your neighbors' front doors close at 7:30 while they're on their way to (hee hee) WORK and you're still snuggling in your warm bed.

2.) Spooning with Mrs. Puff

3.) That Dog Whisperer show with Ceser Millan on National Geographic.

Things That Get Old Really Quickly While You're On Vacation:

1.) Those blasted telemarketers that keep calling.

2.) Spooning with Mrs. Puff and not, say, Philip Seymour Hoffman or Luke Wilson or Heath Ledger or Jake Gyellenhaal.

3.) Dial-up Internet access.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Party up, Dudes, in Liechtenstein!

Okay, so maybe this news is three years old. Whatever. I never claimed this to be a breaking-news blog.

But an Alert Reader recently alerted me to the fact that you can -- hello! -- RENT OUT LIECHTENSTEIN. As in, rent it out. Yes. Just like you would the East Ballroom A at the local Westin. Or your local Elks Club lodge. Except, as I've stated, you'd be renting out the whole of Liechtenstein. How did I live this long without knowing this was an option available to me?

This news makes any upcoming wedding invitations seem rather anticlimactic when the knowledge is out there that the happy couple could be utilizing a wealthy European micro-country for a venue rather than...oh, say, anywhere else.

I'd be interested to know if this is actually still possible to do three years later and what types of corporations/gabillionaires have done this. Is there an event coordinator that puts these events together and if so, how many post-it notes does THAT person have to deal with?

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Take a Wild Guess

It's Saturday afternoon/evening. The entire day has been gloriously sunny. I'm not sure it's warm out there, but it's sure pretty. What has Beth been doing all weekend so far? Here are your choices:

a.) Went for a early morning run, where I later met up with my co-ed intermural soccer league teammates for some training before the big game.
b.) Headed up to the mountains for some camping and a chance to break in my new boots from REI.
c.) Stayed home, drinking an entire pot of coffee while listening the Magnetic Fields and reading In Cold Blood. Napped intermittently and finally got around to Swiffering the floors.

Stumped? Give up? Whoo. That was fun. I'm still snorting and giggling over the idea of my wearing anything from REI. Let alone the idea of my running in public.

Stephen Merritt beckons me again.....

Thursday, March 09, 2006

My Boyfriend Mark Bittman

I heart Mark Bittman, I really do.

I first became attracted to him when I picked up his amazing "How To Cook Everything." Because it really does, honestly, tell you how to cook everything. I mean, seriously, where do you go from there? After you've cooked everything?

I'll tell you where. You go around the damned world and cook everything, everywhere. Because you're Mark Bittman and you kick some major culinary booty.

And as one whose apartment now smells (okay, reeks is probably the better word) of ginger and tumeric and chilis, I have made a giant batch of Saag Paneer and am feeling pretty durned fancy and chef-like.

If a note goes around your classroom and asks you if you heart Mark Bittman, you'd be wise to check the box marked "YES."

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Seriously, folks, no squealing

Um. Wow. It would be downright irresponsible of me if I did not share the following Websites with the World At Large as they never fail -- no, not even once -- to make me giddy even on my most angst-ridden of days.

Enter the world of, where you will be mercilessly subjected to baby bunnies, hamsters, kittens and even a newborn kiwi bird.

Need more cuteness? Think you can handle the cuteness? Get your daily panda fix at (appropriately enough) Panda

Just TRY and be in a bad mood after visiting these sites. I dare you. Double-dog-dare-you with a baby panda on top.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Beth's Incredibly Low Key Vacation To Come

For the first time in, um, ever, I’m going to be on vacation next week without a single thing planned. No trips, no planes/trains/automobiles, no major home-based projects, nada. Which I do realize is an obnoxious thing to be complaining about (but hey, I’ll do my best). Bring on a week of sleeping in, catching up on my Julia Child DVDs and reading trashy magazines.

I am a wee bit fearful that Reclusive, Asocial Beth will not take over and keep me locked inside my apartment alone for nine straight days with the Puff. I would prefer to be parked at my local hipster coffee shop with my journal catching up on my morning pages….or wandering through an art gallery…or making Saag Paneer....or tossing my beret up into the downtown skyline a la Mary Tyler Moore. My best guess is that it’ll be a combination of all of the above options.

Anybody out there got suggestions for what I could be doing in Seattle next week? Anybody got a beret they can lend me?

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Warmth and Fuzziness

I’m feeling genuinely, 100 percent warm and fuzzy after going to a baby shower today for a good friend of mine. Normally – for a single militant non-parent like myself – these events are (let’s face it) not all that much fun since they always involve lots of stories about labor and (ugh) squatting and breastfeeding and things that I cannot in any way identify with. Usually I end up smiling politely and laughing at the right times (“….And I said to him, don’t tell me to push, buddy!” Ha ha ha….ugh) wondering when I can go back home to my apartment and order some Tandoori Chicken to eat during the Simpsons. But this time was different.

This time I couldn’t help but bask in the glow of my friend and her wee one. She was beautiful. And terrified. And excited. And overwhelmed. And so, so happy. And seeing her hold up a tiny pink velvety little footy pajama thing against her big belly just filled me with joy. I felt so proud and giddy and protective and happy for her and her husband and her little muffin-to-be. I just can’t wait to meet the little creature that’s going to be coming in a few weeks.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

So. Huh. Yeah.

I realized about half way through the day that today is the 20th anniversary of the day that my dad moved out of our house. I’m not in meltdown phase at all (and I’m not saying that as I bravely bite my lip and hold back tears, either), it was just one of those “Oh. Yeah. Right….” moments that hit me suddenly. The 20th anniversary of anything in my life seems like a big deal. It definitely puts things in perspective. Well, in this case, sort-of perspective. I mean, it’s hard to compare my life at age 12 to now….or my parents’ lives then to how they are now…and make sense of it. I mean, whodathunk? Could I have envisioned then the way my life would be now? Did I see myself one day living in Seattle, working in high tech PR? Hell, no. I probably couldn’t have envisioned myself in high school yet, let alone 20 years down the road.

I don’t’ even remember much about that day. It wasn’t particularly dramatic for me. I got to stay home from school. My mom and I went to see “Pretty in Pink” at the mall while my dad packed up. (*Which means, as an aside, that that movie is also twenty years old, which is just too much for my little brain to comprehend today.) And so that was 20 years ago. Huh.

Sorry, not a very articulate posting here. Huh. That’s all I got, I guess.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Smelly Cat, What Are They Feeding You?

Thoreau’s little cabin in the woods has nothin’ on my eventful night. One has not fully lived until they have picked up their smelly, poopy 20-pound cat named Mrs. Puff, dropped her into the kitchen sink, and given her a bath. Until you have heard the low, guttural, Linda Blair-esque growling coming from said smelly cat, and the squirmy-ness of a furry, terrified miniature bear cub/house cat covered in Dove shampoo, it’s just not a complete life.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Reading Books With Pictures

Okay, I admit it. It’s a little unusual to be reading Strunk and White’s “The Elements of Style,” especially when not in the context of late-night term paper preparation. But have you people seen this illustrated version? I mean, come on, people. This is Grade A adorability and for language/grammar geeks like me, this is like buttah.

The book itself is gorgeous and colorful and amusing (I can’t say hilarious, exactly, but that’s probably not the goal anyway) and I can just imagine how exciting it was for the illustrator Maira Kalman to see her name on the book spine right alongside E.B. White and William Strunk. Nicely done, girlfriend.