Sunday, July 29, 2007

Once again my hipster street cred is shot all to hell.... I sit on my sofa this afternoon finishing the latest - and final - installment of the Harry Potter empire and have tears streaming down my face.

Oh Harry. I'll miss you.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Jake Gyllenhaal Knew What He Was Talkin' Bout

Dammit, Payless ShoeSource.

I thought it was over between us. I went without you for a long time. We're no good for each other, Payless ShoeSource, I know that as much as you do. Face it, you're cheap and poorly constructed and when I walk around with you for too long, my feet reek to high heaven from pleather held together with stitches made by a Third World 8-year-old factory worker.

And yet, there you were, on a sunny Saturday in downtown San Francisco while I was wandering aimlessly. Whispering to me. Luring me in while you looked all cute with your shelves packed with ballet flats. And suddenly I was back in your arms and all was right with the world.

I'm not proud of our reunion. Okay, I'm a little smug about my $18 silver ballet flats and $15 black patent leather Mary Janes. They are cute as hell and I admit you can satisfy me in ways that Zappos and Endless and Nordstrom just can't. Why must you continue to tempt me and keep this blasted love affair alive, Payless ShoeSource?

I wish I could quit you, Payless ShoeSource.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Open Letter to Cheyenne, The Stylist Who Cut My Hair Yesterday

Dear Cheyenne,

First off, sir, props for being enough of a diva that you can actually pull off the name “Cheyenne.”
Um, yeah….so on that note about the bitchy diva-ness. I really didn’t appreciate the attitude you dished up to me when I came in for my haircut. I get that I wasn’t wearing a sassy halter sundress with stilettos like many of the other patrons there, and I get that my DIY color-from-a-box needs a touch up, badly. I get that my Payless sneakers and Maybelline lip gloss weren't real appreciated in your posh Aveda-centric world.

But bee-yotch, please.

I deserve a pair of snaps and a “You look gorgeous, girlfriend!” just as much as every other customer that perches on your stylist chair does. At the very least, I deserved a freakin’ handshake when I met you for the first time rather than a head-to-toe glance at my outfit, not to mention some conversational small talk while you cut and style my hair. For $95, you could have at least pretended to be somewhat engaging rather than merely showing off how stylish and cutting edge you are. We get it, okay?

Smell ya later - the hunt for a great stylist in the city is back on, big time.


Friday, July 20, 2007

Open Letter to the Electrician Who Wired the Kitchen in my Apartment

Dear Electrician,

I ask you, was there some sort of random shortage on electrical outlets when you were tasked to wire up my apartment?

Surely there has to be a logical reason as to why you put just one, single, solitary outlet in my kitchen. Really, just one outlet in which to plug things in? What is this, the third world? Is this some sort of test to see how creative I can be with my electricity consumption?

Your excruciatingly minimal outlet allotment means I can’t (for example) brew coffee and make toast at the same time. This hardly seems like a particularly exotic or demanding request. And yet, you deny me that simple pleasure and force me to take my toaster into my living room and utilize those outlets in order to toast. That is just downright madness. You, sir/ma’am, limit my ability to simultaneously brew and toast. CURSE YOU AND YOUR ENTIRE ELECTRICIAN FAMILY!

I hope when you return home from a hard day of electrical work to your posh, space-age multiple outlet-laden kitchen that you remember just how truly blessed you are when it comes time to utilize the food processor AND the Foreman Grill AND the bread machine. All at the same time.

Some of us, you see, are not so electrically fortunate.


Shaken but not stirred yet: Beth returns!

It’s been two weeks since last I posted and boy, have I ever heard about it from you loyal readers. Enough already! I’m baaaaaack! Hmmm, where to even begin? Let’s start with a basic needs overview:

Shelter: Good progress here – I’m basically all moved in and trying to get used to having my apartment overlook the Loudest Street EVER. Seriously, Bay Street? You can’t cease with the motorcycle revving and delivery truck beeping and drunk people shouting for just a few hours at night? Other than that, things are good, except I feel like I live in a shoebox that smells like a cat box. Apparently the key to living in a small studio is that you keep it immaculately clean otherwise it's all downhill from there, quickly.

Transportation: I’ve had two flings so far with my boyfriend Flexcar and our love proves stronger than ever. Flexcar’s quite posh in the Bay Area with their green Toyota Priuses, which are SO shmancy that they don’t even use normal keys to enter the vehicle or start the ignition. Take that, fossil fuel guzzling cars with your archaic, metal keys. Pffft. I’ve also figured out two bus routes to get me to work, one of which is packed with tourists, the other which is packed with, ahem, exotic views of Chinatown and roasting rotisserie ducks hanging in shop windows.

Clothing: Hate all of my schlumpy Seattle clothing. Need razor sharp wardrobe ASAP. Everyone here is very hip with great shoes and great hair and clear skin and trendy vintage wears. Donations for my Bay Area makeover will be gladly accepted.

Books: Found a Half Price Books (my happy place) in Berkeley, which was strangely disappointing. Clearly someone sent around the memo that day that Beth had some extra cash so they hid all of the good stuff in the back rooms.

Earth: The World of Beth survived her first 4.2 magnitude earthquake at 4:40 this morning with nothing more than a slight rattling of my windows. I rolled right back over and went to sleep and tried to ignore the fact that animals are supposed to have a sixth sense about these types of things and warn their humans about them…and Puff just kept right on snoozing next to me. Damn that cat.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Hot Shins: Beth Freaks Out Until Her Stuff Arrives

So, um, apparently when I was joking about my movers selling my sofa in Mexico to buy weed, I might not have been entirely off base. Without much explanation, my sketchy-sketch movers showed up two days late which - admittedly - is better than never, but it was a very hectic day yesterday while I waited on sharp, pointy, angry eggshells to get a call back about the whereabouts of my worldly possessions.

To kill time, we sat near my pool, and I proceeded to get very sunburnt shins which is proving to be a very random and unsexy place to get burnt. It was disorienting to then go out later in the evening for fireworks - after being sunburnt on a sunny, warm day - and find it so cold that you need a coat and scarf. San Francisco, you're one strange cat, you know that?
The good news - at last - is that my stuff arrived (relatively) safe and sound and today has been very much like Christmas except that you're opening boxes you packed yourself of your own stuff. Still, stuff! Let's hear it for kitchen pans and picture frames and books and towels and stuff!
Big time Sanity Props are due to Heidi Jo, who did an excellent job at distracting me and keeping me from going off the deep end these past few days. You, my friend, deserve a case of Elizabeth Spencer, for all the work you did these past few days.
Chillin' on the sofa tonight with a Bud Light (the drink of the choice for this trip) and some episodes of Entourage, having dropped Heidi off at the airport. Feelin' scared. Feelin' exhausted. Feelin' overwhelmed with potential and that's scary and exciting and wonderful and intimidating and then right back to scary. Can't overthink - gotta just get out there and experience whatever is thrown at me. As the card on my fridge says, "You must travel in the direction of your fear."
For tonight though, I'm heading in the direction of my bed and we'll take it from there.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Abandon Hope Of Being a Hipster, All Yee Who Enter Here

The World of Beth arrives in San Francisco!

After signing my lease and checking out my very empty, very tiny, very expensive, apartment, Heidi and I hit the streets for some Hot Tourist Action until my stuff arrives bright and early tomorrow morning.

Cable car tour of the city? Check. Lunch on Fisherman's Wharf? Check. Ghiradelli Square? Hell yes. Obligatory pictures of the Golden Gate bridge? You know it. I've got exactly six months in my mind to get this touristy crap out of my system before I have to turn into a hardened local, so I might as well immerse myself now and enjoy it.

On an unrelated note, we watched this very odd documentary called "Starbucking" that was advertised as being hilarious and quirky and it was more just kind of disturbing and sad. One man's quest to visit every Starbucks in the world - interesting idea, no? Perhaps I could start some similar obsession now that I'm just an hour outside of wine country - visit every winery in Napa and Sonoma? Or perhaps every used book store in San Francisco? Oh right. I've got work. That. Best to enjoy the next day or so until I have to resume my normal responsible=person life...

Monday, July 02, 2007

Fingers Crossed: The Journey Continues

Day two of the road trip and everything - fingers crossed - has gone smoothly and without angst. We've been rockin' out to Dolly Parton and the Scissor Sisters - life is more or less good, save for the disturbing series of anti-evolution billboards posted along the highway ("Don't Make a Monkey Out of Me!").

Puff has proven herself to be a frickin' furry ROCK STAR when it comes to travel and has exceeded all of my expectations. Maybe she was just cranky all this time because she really wanted to see the country from the backseat of a Dodge Caravan - maybe? Sort of? Possibly?

We stopped driving around 8 and are staying in the hamlet of Willows, California, at a Motel 6 that is remarkably, and reliably, Motel 6-ish. Comfort food and Bud Lights at the beary over-decorated Black Bear Diner (see pic) and now it's lights out. The real adventure starts tomorrow when we hit civilization....

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Minivan, Baby! Ah yeaaaaaah....

Good grief, kids, where to begin?

98 percent of my things are now in a moving truck - entirely out of my control and being driven to San Francisco by, ahem, less than legit-looking movers. Scratch that. Freakin' scary movers. Who scammed me out of buckets of money I didn't have in the first place and were laughably unprofessional and who are probably selling my sofa and toaster at the Mexican border right now to score some weed and some tier three hookers...

But I digress.

This means until I arrive at my new apartment I am technically homeless and everything currently in my possession consists only of a 30-pound cat, cleaning supplies, plants, CDs and my clothes. That's it. Oh, and don't forget a rockin' rental minivan! Wheeee! It's road trip time, baby!

After about 673 trips back and forth to load up my Dodge Caravan, Soccer Mom Beth finally hit the road around 4 in the afternoon with Puff and the Travel Monkey.* First stop was to pick up my trusty travel mate Heidi Jo at the airport, and then we were off down I-5 to Portland for our first night on the road.

Puff has been absolutely AMAZING so far on this first leg, even if it was only for three hours. She's been quiet and panic free, which has reduced the number of times I have had to screach to the back of the van that I will turn this freakishly large van around this instant young lady, do you hear me. Our Hillsboro hostess with the mostess Ginny provided us with room and board that was truly beyond expectations, and then went the extra mile by leaving us fresh baked cookies and veggies and dip for the road. Love her. Seriously. Thanks buddy.

Tomorrow will be the longest driving day and let's keep our fingers crossed that the cat continues with this good behavior. Stay tuned....

* Oh, the Travel Monkey isn't all that exciting. It's a little stuffed monkey I take on trips with me. Heidi and I have decided to name him Rufus.