Saturday, December 11, 2010

jingle hell

Ok, I kind of fell off that #10reverb wagon after one post.

Me, give up on a project after one half-assed attempt? Don't act so surprised.

So while I wasn't writing contemplative blog posts about the experiences of the past year, the holiday season has crept up on me. I walked into Rite-Aid yesterday, fully prepared to roll my eyes and snort derisively at the aisles of Christmas candy and crappy ornaments, as has been my habit since October when all the Christmas shit first appeared. But suddenly, the XMas aisle was lookin' a little sparse. The fake trees and the candy cans have been thoroughly picked over, the five-pound bags of red and green Christmas M&Ms are now largely outnumbered by crappy plastic trays of stale holiday cookies. Who buys cookie trays in Rite-Aid? Besides hoarders or the elderly?

I digress.

It hit me then that the holiday season is official here and, in fact, is quickly approaching the Christmas climax. And my frigid little heart is nowhere near ready.

A quick glance around my apartment proves this fact. The corner where, in years past, my humble little fake tree stood is currently stacked with overdue library books. The kitchen still boasts the plastic jack-o-lantern from my Halloween party. There is also a fake bat hanging from the chandelier.

A carpet of notebooks, school papers, and Amy's sparkly fake mice surrounds the bed. In short -tattered cat toys are about the festive "decoration" in the house.

Instead of bustin' out the garland and Christmas carols, all my free time has been spent writing papers and slicin' tongue.

I did watch the holiday episodes of Community and 30 Rock this week, but even that felt strangely wrong:
"But -- Christmas is so far away!" I said to myself.
"Um -not really," my calendar replied.
"Seriously, why haven't you done any shopping? I'm only a cat and even I know this is the season for buying shit!" said Amy in disgust.

Things had clearly reached Scrooge-like levels of delusion.

So I did what I often do when seeking guidance about how to live my life: I turned to Sweet Mother TV for answers.

Sitcoms tell us that not every holiday can be the Best Holiday Ever. Christmas or not -- shit happens. Examples:

The Golden Girls:

Picture it -- Dorothy, Blanche and Rose are held hostage by a gun-wielding guy dressed as Santa who wanders into the Grief Counseling Center where Rose works. A holiday without cheesecake?! Say it ain't so!

Full House:

The Tanner family spends Christmas Eve stranded in an airport. This was especially tragic for all the other people forced to spend Christmas stranded in an airport with the Tanner family.

The Facts of Life:

Jo's parents suck, and she is forced to spend Christmas at Eastland with Mrs. Garrett selling fruitcakes. This actually sounds like the makings of the best Christmas ever.

Boy Meets World:

People lose their jobs, mall Santa has a heart attack, poor Mr. Feeny is like a sad old shut-in next door with no family. Weeping!


Roseanne and Co. get snowed in at the diner on Christmas Eve. Better there than at the airport with the Tanner family, I suppose.

Yes, Tea Guarie -- there is a Santa Claus! And he is probably being played by a extra who graduated from Emerson College with a degree in Musical Theater.

In short -- the holidays are a time for the suspension of disbelief. No matter how outlandishly crappy your life may seem, you can have faith that Christmas will pull through with a happy ending. The holiday spirit can find us anywhere -- even snowed in at an airport, or trapped by a gun-toting Santa -- if we are just open to it. It's not too late for me to get on the holiday bandwagon -- after all, some of the best Christmases ever happened at the 11th hour.

Sigh. I feel jollier already! Thanks, TV.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

the end is near!

Um, it's December.

How the hell did that happen?! Where did 2010 go?? It seems like just yesterday I was crowing triumphantly about getting into grad school, and making plans to get in shape and grab this year by the balls. And now suddenly, its all drawing to a close.

Time freaks me out.

It always seems like there's not enough of it -- except when there's too much of it, as was the case with my Big Fat Year of Unemployment. Either way, Time is forever messing with my head.

So perhaps I should take a moment to put down the library-school books, set aside the organ meats, and reflect back on this wacky-ass year. God knows, I didn't do much writing / reflecting during the actual year -- please see giant blogging gap from June to November.

In order to make up for lost time, I've decided to participate in this #reverb10 project. For every day of December, the site sends a writing prompt designed to make you reflect on the previous year and think about what lies ahead for 2011. For lapsed-bloggers like myself, this challenge is also supposed to alleviate the: "waaah, i have nothing to blog about!" BS.

As usual, i am a few days behind on this challenge -- but better late than never. So lets just start with the day #4 prompt:

December 4 – Wonder.
How did you cultivate a sense of wonder in your life this year?

Wonder . . . well, I suppose I did spend a lot of time "wondering" this year: Is this grad school thing gonna work out? Am I ever gonna find a job? Am I ever gonna find a job I don't hate or suck at? Why is time going by so fast? What happened to my other black Reef sandal? Why do hoarders hate toilets so much?

Clearly, I'm not "cultivating wonder" in my daily life, so much as "breeding insecurity and self-doubt". Duly noted, writing prompt. In 2011, I shall attempt to be more ponderous and zen. I will take time to enjoy the scenery. I will stop wishing for a magic crystal ball that I can use to spy on my Future Self.

I will try to see the world more like Amy (my cat) sees it -- as one giant playground that exists solely for my entertainment and exploration, which I can also claw to shreds at my leisure.

And in the meantime, I will continue to wonder at the Powers of the Internet that allow me to stream Netflix movies directly to my Wii.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

my offal new job

food service jobs are, in many ways, a magical anthropological adventure. you can tell a lot about people based on what they eat, and how they choose to eat it, and how they behave when they're ordering it.

let us begin our study of human behavior at the deli counter, where people often line up to drool over the meats and organs on prominent display. my question to these folk is: why?? why would you eat this?? have u ever had to slice a giant hunk of cold tongue? cuz i have. and it really does look just like a giant dead cow tongue. now, perhaps back in medieval times, when serfs were given the discarded carcasses of butchered animals to nibble on, the tongue was the meatiest bit left. but civilization has come a long way since then, people -- you don't have to eat the unsavory parts of the animal anymore.

i believe the people who eat this shit should be invited back behind the counter for an up-close look at the tongue in its whole and natural state. they should be forced to really examine the . . . purpleness of it. observe the gelatinous mucus that seems to jelly up the ends.

still hungry? then you, sir, are a monster. good day to you.

also -- what is up with chopped liver? people order this shit by the bucket-load, literally . . . and it does, in fact, resemble the shit of a baby who has been fed only cat food and mashed bananas for several days.

worse, people seem very righteous when they order this crap:

"Yes, give me a pound of your finest chopped liver -- post-haste!"

"You there, girl! Fetch me a half pound of very thinly sliced tongue! So thin that I can see my mottled, liver-spotted hand through it!"

whatever, old people. you wanna stuff yourself gouty with offal -- who am i to judge?

in my previous food service jobs, cold food made for an irate customer. in this new world of strange deli offerings, people want everything cold. cold soup, cold fish, cold meat. if it looks like it could be served in the steerage section of an immigrant steamer, or the barracks of the gulag -- all the better! apparently, people like their sausages cold and seasoned with a hint of hardship and sadness. it brings back fond memories of when the whole family slept in one bed and had consumption, i guess.

now some of you might be thinking -- shame on you, tea guarie! how dare you be close-minded! it's true -- perhaps i am too quick to pass judgment on people based on their affinities for odd meats. some of these old folk might be scandalized by my tastes for diet coke and lean cuisine.

but hey, at least i can sleep at night knowing that i've never willingly had the tongue of a farm animal in my mouth.

just sayin'.

Saturday, November 6, 2010


that's the sound of me defibrillating this blog and raising it from the dead!

mmmm . . . zombie blog want braaaaains . . .

as you can probably guess from the four month hiatus -- life has gone from super-boring to super-busy! quick recap::

-- i am still on the path towards becoming a badass librarian.

-- i now share my apartment with the world's most badass kittykat, Amy Sedaris Guarino the First:

here she is attacking an angel . . .

and here she is being an angel. awww.

-- amy also has a blog. like me, she does not update frequently.
-- i now have a part-time job at Local Family Restaurant, reprising my classic role of Snarky Countergirl #2.
-- the band T&A is making great strides towards taking over the nerd-punk-noise-pop world. we hope to record our first "demo" by the end of the year. what, whaat!
-- i am still locked in a love / hate relationship with Gold's Gym of Somerville. lately i have been ignoring its calls and blocking its facebook status updates, but i'm hopeful that we will reconcile soon.
-- i am still slightly insane.

so yeh, i think those are the major talking points of the past four months. from here on out, my goal shall be to chronicle Librarian School and Restaurant Adventures for your reading pleasure.

also, there have been some requests for another Lady-Mag, Deconstructed post. some day in the very near future, i will take a break from Librarian Homework to read something awful and full of perfume samples, and share my findings with you all.

stay tuned!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

summer awakening

hey, remember when i used to blog?

i know, i know -- i have been neglecting my little corner of the internet. crickets are chirping all up in here, and my last post was littered with spammy comments from asian robots. i deleted them all, so you can't see them now -- but they all included weird links . . . probably to some sort of penis enlargement website. sorry about that.

anyway -- i'm not dead! yes, i might have spent most of the winter holed up in my apartment watching TLC (aka 'The P.T. Barnum Channel') and eating. but now, summer is here, and life has gone from zero to 60 in the span of a few short weeks.

grad school has started! i am now officially a student of library science, hopefully on my way to becoming the most sass-tastic young adult/children's librarian the world has ever seen. if not the world, then at least east cambridge.

also -- i'm in a band. that's right -- you didn't know i could play a musical instrument, did you? well that's because i actually can't! i'm teaching myself the electric guitar with the help of our killer bassist, Rev. the band is called T&A. yes, we know what that means.

so far, we can "play" 3 songs -- one of which is an original composition. i figure another few practices and we'll be ready to go on tour. hell, we already have a myspace. now all we need is some hot merch and we'll be set.

i promise to keep ya'll regularly updated on my adventures in library-school-land. after all, the title of this blog promises a "bad-ass librarian", and i aim to please! in the meantime, go call your local college radio station and request something by T&A. when they claim ignorance of this new band, scoff at them. say: "you don't know T&A? dude, what kind of hipster are you?"

in the meantime, i leave you with this:

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Cosmo, Deconstructed

This week, Shaw's is having some sort of insane sale on 12 packs of Pepsi products. I know this because yesterday I spent 15 minutes in line behind a woman who was trying to buy an entire floor display's worth of Sierra Mist. The cranky old checkout woman was baffled by the whole transaction . . . is Sierra Mist a Pepsi product? Is Schweppes ginger ale? How do you even pronounce 'Schweppes'? Can we get a manager over here? Bueller?

While all this was happening, I had a plenty of time to browse the magazine racks / contemplate my own mortality. Which is how I even noticed this in the first place:

That would be Cosmopolitan magazine, with a faux-naked Lady Gaga on the cover. I should note that I spent a good portion of monsoon-weekend watching the Telephone video and contemplating making my own smoking glasses. Needless to say, Gaga in granny panties intrigued me. So, in a moment of grocery-store-impulse-buy weakness, I tossed Cosmo in my cart.

Now -- the last time I actually purchased an issue of Cosmopolitan, I was probably 14, and on my way to someone's pool party / sleepover.

It was a simpler time.

These days, I am a loyal reader of Bust, Bitch, Vanity Fair, and the occasional tabloid. Yeh, I like to keep abreast of how lonely Jennifer Aniston is, and whether or not Katie Holmes is preggers. But I usually draw the line at the heavy duty "lady-mags" . . . Elle, Lucky, Allure, etc. Which is why I was almost surprised to get home and find Cosmo in my bag.

So I sat down to lunch and started flipping through this glossy new world . . . and an hour of shame-eating later, my brain had officially exploded.

I feel like I need to share this experience with someone -- so internets, I choose you! Let's digest this amazingly whack lady-propaganda together, shall we?

What We're About to Read:

Welcome to the April issue of Cosmo! Spring is in the air, and you know what that means! Sex-capades and shimmery eyeshadow! Wheeee!! I can't wait to see what the 'Sex Article they Can't Describe Here!' is . . . its gotta be pretty freaky-deaky if the worldly Cosmo editors are censoring it. Also -- '50 Things to Do Butt Naked'? And here I could only come up with 32!

Page 30 -- Lady Gaga Wants You:

Wha-whaaa. Cue disappointment sound-effects. I don't know what I was expecting from a Cosmo interview, but this somehow managed to make the most eccentric performance artist of the times just . . . eh. Perhaps it has something to do with the target readership of Cosmo, which is ostensibly 14 year old girls and Snooki. But yeh -- they made Gaga fill out the effin' Cosmo quiz. Notice how she basically wrote in her own answer for every lame-ass question. Nice try, Lady!

Page 36 -- The Rise of the Less Successful Boyfriend:

Favorite Quote: "Give him opportunities to treat you in inexpensive ways. E-mail him a link to an affordable restaurant, and ask if he'll take you. Or point out little things you covet -- a hat, a pair of earrings, even a cupcake -- and say, 'I need to have that. Will you get it for me?'"
Everyone knows that successful relationships are built on a foundation of material goods and fancy dinners -- so keep those hats and cupcakes comin', boys!

Page 57 -- 4 Signs He's Hiding Something:

Seriously?! Way to fuel the paranoia-fire, Cosmo. The next time your boyfriend clears his throat or actually shares the details of his day with you -- throw that lying bastard out! Or, you could just cut the pockets out of all his pants. Problem solved!

Page 60 -- The Guy Report:

I'm going to print this out and keep it in my wallet for handy bar-reference. I recommend you all do the same.

Page 62 -- Why He Loves Your Cooking -- Even If It's Bad:

At first, I was trying to figure out how they stretched this to a full-page article. Or why this was deemed an article-worthy topic, period. To summarize this ground-breaking piece of journalism: dudes (by Cosmo's definition) are like giant 8 year olds who will gladly eat whatever crap is put in front of them.

Page 76 -- Beauty, HIS PICKS:

And here I'd been thinking that only chicks judged me based on my choice of nail polish color -- but it turns out, guys have very strong opinions about this, too. Um, direct quotage, in case you missed this: "Nails grown barely past your fingertips are the ideal length [ . . . ] They look feminine but won't stop you from, say, unzipping him or sexting." Brain exploding in five . . . four . . . three . . .

Page 116 -- Fun, Easy Ways to Fall More in Love:

I LOL'd so hard at this, I cried . . . and then I couldn't stop crying, for some reason. Best tips ever:
"Notice stuff about him. And then tell him."
"Really thank him. If he helps you paint your bathroom, leave his favorite salty snack in the pantry."
"Defuse a fight. Calling him by his pet name in the middle of an argument cools things down [ . . . ] Say something like 'Baby, I hate fighting with you.'"
"Learn a funny joke to tell him that night."

And don't even get me started on that '5 Best Compliments You Can Give Him' box! Seriously, have I accidentally stumbled into a hot-tub time machine back to 1950? I'm fully expecting next month's issue to have a 'Get Back in the Kitchen! 5 Great Sandwiches You Can Make For Your Man!' feature.

Page 118 -- The Sex Article We Can't Describe on the Cover:

I've been waiting for this one, Cosmo! What lurid new sex trend are you about to reveal to your innocent readers? Fetish porn, orgies and bears -- oh my!
Wait a second . . . "oral sex"? That's your top-secret-uber-steamy article of the month??
Dude . . . this really is a magazine aimed at 14 year olds, huh? Not that that's any comfort -- especially with this effing side-bar:

Page 122 -- Be the Girl Every Guy Wants to Talk To:

Please note the first heading in this article -- 'Don't Say A Word . . . Yet'. Instead of, like, talking to a guy, you should, like: "try to casually touch the guy your talking to 5 times within every 15 minutes". And don't forget: "Being a bit fearless by sharing something that's a little out there -- for instance, recounting the time you won a karaoke contest with your awesome rendition of 'Endless Love' or admitting that you've seen all the Saw movies at least twice -- shows an attractive amount of balls-out confidence."

Page 156 -- Read This Before You Drive Alone:

Translation: FEAR! FEAR! FEAR!!!!!

Page 174 -- 50 More Things to Do Naked:

My personal fav is #31: "Bid on eBay. Wearing nada will make you feel ballsy, so you'll get exactly what you want." Huh -- I always thought sitting around naked in front of your computer buying used crap you don't really need was a sign of clinical depression . . . but thanks for setting me straight, Cosmo! Girl power!

Page 178-- Send Him a Secret Sexy Message:

Now, I don't consider myself a bra-burning feminist or anything . . . but this page of Sexy Secret Messages for Your Man -- which are printed on cardstock and designed to be pulled out of the magazine and actually used -- is making me wanna go throw paint at someone.
Also, I am totally gonna use these "Sexy Messages", so watch your mailboxes!

Most Amazing Weight Loss Ad of the Issue:

Ok, so if I'm reading this right -- you're supposed to live on "Almased" and vegetable broth for a week, followed by several weeks of "Almased" and one meal of veggies and lean meat. Why does this sound like a recipe for failure in a glass?

Sigh. Well that brings us to the end of the issue, folks! I think we've all learned a little something, right? I know I have! I need to find myself a dude who drinks microbrews and never puts his hands in his pockets and, ideally, is more successful than me. To do this, I must keep my nails short (but not too short), learn some funny jokes I can tell him while simultaneously not talking too much, and caress him 5 times during a 15 minute conversation. Also, stock the cabinets with snacks and my crappy-ass attempts at cooking. Also, send him sexy secret messages and ask him to buy me cheap hats.

Also -- oral sex!!! Tehehehe!!!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

T is for Toolgirl, Who's Terribly Handy . . .

After a rainstorm of biblical proportions, I was all set to start my Build-An-Ark project . . . but lo, the sun is shining once again! In fact, today was so damn lovely, I was inspired to do some spring cleaning / home improvement.

Now . . . I should note that I was raised in a family where doing things the "right" way with the "correct" tools was generally scoffed at. Why bother looking for a hammer when you can just pound that nail in with mom's old shoe? Who needs a flashlight when you've got a booklight / cell phone / Game Boy to illuminate your path? As a result, I've learned to just live with a lot of malfunctioning appliances, burned out overhead lights, and a tub that doesn't exactly drain correctly.

But the appearance of sunshine made me so giddy this morning, I rolled up my sleeves and decided to clear away some winter cobwebs before the next round of rain and gloom. And since my schedule will soon be filled with school and work, I figured I might as well get my household in order while I can. So I dragged the stepladder up from the Basement of Doom and changed all the lightbulbs in the apartment to low-wattage, energy-saving ones. Then, by the light of freshly changed bulbs, I tore apart my closet and got down to some good ol' fashioned organizing!

I have lots of hats. And shirts. And skirts. And not a lot of dresser space.

Alternative storage solutions were called for.

Soooooo . . . I strolled over to Target in the lovely bright sunshine, and came home with this bad boy:

Meet My First Drill! Drilly McDrillerson!

Wow, you guys -- do you know how much easier shit is when you have a power tool?!

Don't answer that.

Anyway -- behold, the fruit of my labors!

Julie gave me this hanging candle holder for Christmas, and I've been puzzling over how to hang it for months now. Clearly, those hooks with the sticky tape on the back weren't going to cut it. But with my new pal Drilly, mounting a hook into the ceiling was a snap! I might need a slightly longer chain to hang the light from, but overall it looks lovely.

After drilling into the ceiling, I was ready to tackle a wall. But I was still a little nervous about attempting this. My apartment building is very old, and there's no telling what secrets / faulty wiring lie behind the walls. Perhaps a more conscientious person would have used a stud-finder -- or even a tape measure -- to figure out the best way to mount something. I used the next best thing to a stud-finder -- Papa G.

Papa G: "Good afternoon, Guarie Design Group."

Me: "Papa, it's me. I have a home improvement question."

Papa G: "Oh, God . . ."

Me: "If I just drill into the kitchen wall, will anything bad happen to me?"

Papa G: "Well, you could electrocute yourself. Where'd you get a drill?"

Me: "How will I know if I'm going to electrocute myself?"

Papa G: " Just don't drill directly above any light switches or electrical outlets and you should be ok."

Me: "Ok. If you don't hear from me for a few days, it probably means I've zapped myself and I'm being eaten by the cat."

Papa G: "Good luck!"

So, I called upon the protective powers of the Patron Saint of Household Chores, and went to work. And not only did I survive -- I managed to successfully hang this Ikea storage rack that's been in my closet for months!

You have no idea how happy this thing makes me! I have no drawers in my kitchen. At all. My silverware has been living on the sideboard in these little metal containers -- which look way cooler hanging from the wall!

After my success in the kitchen, I moved on to the closet:

Fancy-pants new rack . . .

. . . means no more hunting for lost scarves and hats!

Who knew hanging shit on the walls would be so satisfying/empowering! If anyone needs any drilling done, you know who to call!*

*ew - not that kind of drilling, you pervs!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

maeby this time . . .

blargh, it is march. tis the season for madness!

i feel like i haven't seen the sun in a year. i'm beginning to think this might really be the end of the world -- earthquakes, tsunamis, blizzards in places where we grow citrus. i fear that boston is doomed to become a gray colony of mole-people. or perhaps we'll be overrun by glittery vampires, escaping the sun.

i need to get out of the house.

i'm not going to lie to you, internet people. i've spent the better part of this week in my bathrobe, watching Arrested Development. when i confessed this to my therapist, she said, "well, that's fitting!"

rut roh.

seriously, though -- nothing cures late winter SADness like an amazingly clever sitcom. i don't know why i didn't pay more attention to this show until now. i seem to jump on the pop-culture fan-wagons about 4 years too late. so in 2014, i'm gonna be all about vampires and Lost. adjust your christmas shopping lists accordingly.

anyway -- so yesterday, i tore myself away for the antics of the Bluth family, put on some clothes, and dragged my pathetic ass to the gym. i was fully prepared for a beat-down by Ron. i have not been very consistent in my gym efforts of late. my procrastination efforts, however, have been off the charts!

Ron has switched up the workout routine to a 30 minute, full-body gorefest. last week, i was left shaking and sweating, flat on my back in the middle of the weight-lifting room while Ron's smug face spun above me. this week, i was prepared for a similar out-of-body torture experience. and i wasn't looking forward to it.

"what's the point of all this exercise bullshit, anyway? the world is clearly ending soon. i should be out eating ice cream and making bad decisions."

once Ron and i got down to business, however, my rouge muscles seemed to pull themselves together and turned out a decent workout. at one point, as i lunged the length of the gym, Ron called out, "you are lookin' goooood right now!" i assume he was talking to me and not the WWE-wannabe who was grunting menacingly on the other side of the weight bench.

when i'd completed my final crunches and was sprawled on the floor at Ron's feet, i asked him to give it to me straight.

Me: "am i improving at all?"

Ron: "you've definitely got potential . . . i mean, you're lookin' good right now. all you need is consistency -- you just gotta get in here and do this routine every other day, and throw some cardio in on the off days, and you'll see the results."

Me: "i get kinda intimidated when i'm doing the workout solo, you know? i've . . . i've never been athletic at all, i've always been kinda goofy and clumsy, so i feel really self-conscious when i'm back there tryin' to do crunches on the big rubber ball without you there to make sure i don't roll away."

Ron: "you gotta be confident! you got this -- and you already look great as it is, you're just tryin' to tone up a little bit. trust me, i wouldn't tell you no lies . . . you don't need to feel self-conscious."

Me: "spring is coming. i'm freaking out about shorts. also, bathing suits."

Ron: "don't be thinking about the summer or the clothes or any of that. just work on bein' consistent, and you'll see the results. you've got this."

this is why i'm paying Ron the big bucks -- to tell me that i'm not a giant mountain of mole-flesh that should just go home and wait for the apocalypse to start. he also puts my goals in perspective. they are not as insurmountable as they might feel, here in the deep cold depths of winter.

the sun will shine again. i will wear shorts again. don't over think it. you got this.

Thursday, February 25, 2010


Look who has a new roommate!

Due to some complicated family disasters, I have been given the OK to welcome pets into my apartment! Soooo . . . everyone meet Emily, the cat I've had since I was 14. Which makes her a dottering old woman in cat years. Like Carol Channing.

Actually, Em is a lot like Carol Channing. She's always had this aura of raggedy-ness to her, like we just pulled her out of a dumpster -- even though she's been a pampered indoor cat since kittenhood. Apparently, you can take the kitty out of the derelict house in Revere, but you can't take the derelict house in Revere out of the cat.

She's also totally wacky and acts like a dog. She comes dutifully when called, but only if you say her name in this high pitched sing-song voice "Eeeeemmmmmmilllllllieeeee!"

I suspect Emily was the runt of the litter, and never quite got the hang of basic cat behavior. She has shitty balance. She will take five minutes to psych herself up for the epic leap from sofa to floor. She never quite got the hang of the cat tongue-bath, either. Instead of finding a discreet corner and grooming herself, she'll crawl into your lap, lick your hand, and then rub herself against it. This is either incredibly lazy or incredibly brilliant.

Emily is also skinny as a crackwhore, dispite the fact that she loves to eat, and will often eat so fast that she pukes. The only way I was able to lure her out from under a chair yesterday was with the promise of yummies:

I was a little afraid that the move to the big city would be traumatic for a cat who has only the left the confines of my parents' house a few times in her entire life. But she is adjusting rather well, and is slowly starting to explore . . .

Even she is horrified by the condition of my ancient kitchen floor.

Emily and I share a mutual love of watching TV, so that's what we did for much of yesterday:

"That Dr. Phil is full of shit! Put on Tyra!"

"And get that camera out of my face, bitch!"

And while I'm still paranoid that the apartment is not totally cat-proofed, we seem to be settling in nicely here! And now, when I'm talking out loud to myself or the TV, its like I'm ostensibly talking to Em.

Meow meow meow meow meow meow!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


As my previous post so cleverly (read: lazily) illustrated -- I had a birthday!

I turned 27 on 2/7. Which seemed only mildly cool until I started to figure out the "magic" birthdays of other members of my family, and realized that not everyone lives to see this numerological milestone. For example, my brother will have to wait until he turns 127 on 12/7. Sorry, Ev.

Anyway -- birthdays are always an excuse for festivity, magic number or not! I definitely dragged the celebrating out for a whole weekend. A weekend full of booze, fried food, and waffles.

And it was glorious!

So after a delicious party-bender, I returned to the gym for my Monday afternoon session with Ron. I was feelin' ok -- a little bloated, maybe, but certainly not hungover.

"Are you ready for me?" Ron asked.

"Sure!" I blithely replied, as I wandered over to the weight room and plunked myself down on the giant rubber exercise ball.

Five minutes later, I knew something was horribly, horribly wrong. The muscles in my arms felt like they'd been replaced with waffles.

"Are you sweating maple syrup?" asked the 6-foot talking lobster with Ron's voice.

"I'm dying!" I groaned, and rolled ever so gracefully off the ball and onto the floor. Where I planned to remain until Spring.

"Party too hard?" Ron asked, as he pressed some slightly-less torturous 3lb dumbbells into my hands.

"It was my birthday weekend," I said.

"Ahhhhh . . ." Ron said, as he propped my limp body up against a wall. "Seven reps, you can do it . . . ok, seven more . . ."

Ron was not about to let me off easy, even though I was about to let loose a weekend's worth of junk-food all over his sneakers. I'd had my fun, and now Ron -- and my pathetically uncooperative body -- were going to make me pay for it.

At this moment, I hated Ron. The same hot, prickly, frustrated rage I felt towards every gym teacher and soccer coach I've ever had. Why are you making me do this? I can't! Not today. I can't.

It turns out, I could. And I did. Ron cut the end of the session a little sort and let me off without much of an ab workout. He was probably also afraid that I was about puke all over him. I limped and crawled frantically out of the gym like I was escaping from some sort of POW camp.

Never again, I thought to myself. That SUCKED.

At first, I blamed Ron. Couldn't that bastard cut me a break? It was my birthday . . . er . . . month, after all! I was pissed. And . . . disappointed.

I'd been feeling so good about my little baby-steps of gym progress. Lifting weights and doing crunches had made me feel strong and powerful and capable. Like my body was a well-tuned machine, instead of a doughy sack of insecurities. I was on the road to becoming a stronger, healthier, less insane me . . . and now I was back to square one. Cue the crying and shame eating.

It's taken a little time to shake off the frustration. I'm realizing, though, that getting in shape really takes a certain amount of commitment. I've always rolled my eyes at people who get up at 5am on Christmas Day to get in their workout or whatever . . . but I'll bet those people feel pretty damn good when they're done.

Yes, there are going to be days when my brain says, "Eff it, Tea -- let's skip the gym today. You went yesterday, you can go tomorrow!" Or, "Life sucks, have another beer!" I can choose to listen to that voice -- and there will probably be times when I do -- but there will be consequences. I will feel like ass the next day. My strength training will come to a standstill, and workouts will get harder. I will continue hallucinate that Ron is a giant crustacean.

Basically -- I gotta make a commitment. Which, for a commitment-phobe like moi, is scary shit. But I also need to choose what's more important to me -- feeling good in the long term, or self-gratification in the short term.

Heady stuff, man. And I thought I was just signing on to drop a few pounds for bathing suit season!

This week, I'm gonna get back in the saddle and commit to the plan. Four strength training workouts a week -- 1 with Ron, 3 on my own. That's 2 Upper Body Days, 2 Lower Body Days. I'm also gonna be brave and hit up the Sunday morning yoga class. I'm gonna include my Couch to 5k training sessions as warm-ups before my strength training sessions.

I don't have to do everything perfectly, but I have to make the effort. Time makes things easier -- but only if you stick with it!

Sticking with things has never been a strength of mine. But this is all about getting stronger -- in every sense of the word.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


1. February is a short month.

2. As is customary with my magic-short-birthday month, I have been doing a lot of eating/drinking/partying!

3. Blogging, not so much.

4. I have seen lots of lovely bands:

5. I ate wondrous pomme frites while bicycles twinkled above me . . .

6. I hung out with the locals and watched J.Bo's karaoke-DJ destiny be fulfilled!

7. We also played darts . . .

8. Apparently, I have taken very few photos in the month of February. I must rely on stock-images from the internets!

9. But Libby did come over and take pictures of me for her photography school assignment. Hello, Libertine!

10. My apartment smells like springtime:

11. On my birthday, I had a lovely massage here:

12. The massage lady was very nice. Especially after I fell asleep on the table.

13. Chicken and waffles changed my life!!

14. You should all stop reading this blog and go, immediately, to Tupelo in Inman Sq. I'll wait for you to get back.

15. And while I'm waiting, I will think about how lame all the Superbowl ads were.

16. Except for the one with Betty White:

17. Chelsee and I have seen lots of movies, in preparation for the Oscars.

18. I love this girl:

19. This girl, too:

20. And speaking of Carey Mulligan, An Education sparked some serious "50's-style-retro" cravings. The cure?

21. Diners . . .

22. . . . and shopping for vintage goodies.

23. I found these old school menus, which will make lovely art for my kitchen . . .

24. I also found $600 Chanel pumps for $68!

25. But now it's time to get back on the bandwagon. Less shopping/partying/waffles, more job-hunting/FAFSA-filing/weight lifting!

26. I promise my next update will feature more words . . . and perhaps some wacky stories of my gym exploits. That's what the readers want, yes?

27. For now -- here's to my lucky year!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

the lazy-ass and the 5k: part I

Once upon a time, there were three girls named . . . er . . . Miss T., Miss C. and Miss M. They worked together all day (and sometimes all night) at a Big Nameless Company in a City Near You. These lovely ladies were sassy, stylish and awesome, even in the face of adversity, hardship, and evil sea witches.

Sometimes, they were very busy. And sometimes, they were very bored.

When boredom struck, these three intrepid young ingenues turned to the internets for distraction and entertainment. They started blogs, and stalked other peoples blogs, and obsessively checked for updates on the outside world.

Miss C. became an internet celebrity.

Miss M. learned 4000 new ways to prepare oatmeal.

Miss T. laughed out loud too much, and often got scolded.

Eventually, the three friends were forced to part ways, but their love of voyeuristically stalking girls much more motivated and physically fit than themselves remained strong. United by their love of shit on the internet, they remained in touch.

One day, in the bitter depths of January, Miss M. sent her fallen comrades a message, reminding them of a pact they'd once made. (well . . . not so much a "pact", as "half-assed pipe-dream". and Miss C. would probably argue that she'd never agree to such crap in the first place -- but whatever).

"Hey guys -- Remember when we talked about running a 5k? Well, I've found the perfect one for us! It's a flat course, with a scenic view -- and there'll be refreshments afterwards!"

At first, Miss T. and Miss C. were a bit hesitant. Miss C. hates running. Miss T. has never actually run anywhere, ever. But the more they pondered the challenge, the more appealing it became. Sort of. And after all, if all those "healthy living" girls could run marathons and whatever -- surely our three heroes could do it too, yeh?

"Miss M. -- you had me at refreshments," replied Miss T.

So the three girls vowed to get themselves in running shape and kick some 5k ass. They have 2 months.

Let the adventure begin!!

Guess what, guys? That's a true story! I know, you were probably thinking it was some sort of Disney princess fairy tale, right? Any minute now, a singing june-bug is gonna come in and teach Miss T. about the importance of hydration while training. And maybe that will happen, if I get dehydrated and delirious enough!

So yeh . . . I'm gonna run a 5k. My two former co-workers have signed on to join me. Anyone else wanna be part of the story?! It'll be awesome -- you might even get to see me cry / throw up!

Seriously -- you should all come join us. Yes you, blog reader. I know who you are, and what you're thinking. And you're thinking, "Oh, heeeelllll no!" Well stop thinking that, and come sign up for the 5k with me. You know you want to.

Anyway --as the story above states -- I've never run before in my life, except to catch a bus or something. And even then . . . .I give up easily. Eh, there'll be another bus . . . sometime. In the meantime, lets just sit on this bench . . . .zzzzzz . . .

Miss M., knowing about my reluctance to move, also sent along the link to this handy Couch to 5k training program. Any exercise program that has the word "couch" in the title is a-ok in my book. Today, as I hit up the gym for a non-trainer sweat session, I decided to put the plan to action.

Week 1, Workout 1 is clearly designed for people who loooove their couches. Like moi. After a "brisk 5 minute warm up walk", you then jog for 60 seconds and walk for 90 seconds. You keep that up for 20 minutes. Then you're done.

Even I found this to be pretty easy.

10 minutes in, I was feeling pretty good. I'll admit, it was a little awkward cranking the treadmill back and forth from "run" speed to "walk" speed every 60 seconds. It only got more lame when some long-legged Olympian hopped on the treadmill next to me and broke into a flat out sprint.

Walking . . . . .jogging! Ok, walking . . . walking . . . jogging! . . . Walking . . .

My grandma could probably have done the walk/jog thing more gracefully. Granted, my grandmother also probably has much better support garments than I. But I digress.

So I was nearly done with Workout 1, when my trainer, Ron, wanders over and gives me the thumbs up. Yes, hi Ron. Good to see you too. My arms, shoulders and back still aren't speaking to you, though -- so eff off.

I realized Ron was probably expecting me to go bench-press some shit after this lame treadmill routine, so I shamefully dragged myself over to the free-weight area and actually completed a decent set of squats and lunges.

Ron says I have "perfect form" while squatting. I know. I know.

After 20 diligent minutes of bobbing around with the giant exercise ball and stretching, I scampered the hell out of there. Mission accomplished! Workout 1, in the bag!

Two months is not a long time to go from lazy-ass to runner, but I'm keepin' the faith. If things are looking bad come race day, I'm sure a whistling cricket or a dancing crab will come to my aid with some golden sneakers or something.

Cuz that's how fairy tales work, yo.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

shame on tea -- an extremely belated/half-assed red carpet recap

I know, I know - all has been quiet here at One Girl, 12 Ways. Sorry, readers. My bad!

So, I've been planning to do a Red Carpet Recap of the Golden Globes. I started hunting the internets for suitable photos of all my fav celebs . . . and then the People's Choice Awards happened, and the SAG's -- and suddenly I was overwhelmed with red carpet pics. Two weeks later, my thoughts on the Golden Globes seem pretty irrelevant. Now it's full steam ahead to Oscar season!

I am making strides towards my goal of seeing all the Academy Award nominated films before the big night. Which some might argue is a nonsensical feat. Since the Academy Awards outcome will have no direct impact on my life whatsoever. Also, actual nominees have not even been announced yet.

Whatever! This pop-culture whore flies in the face of common sense / reality!

So I'm basing my current movie-viewing line-up on all the other award show nominations of the season. In fact, I am heading off in a bit to see another potential Oscar contender this afternoon! When the actual shortlist is announced for reals, I'll give you my picks.

But for now, here are a few of my favorite moments from the 2010 red carpet season thus far . . .

Oh, what I would give to be sittin' at this table! Though I must admit, I enjoyed Tina's SAG awards dress more . . .

. . . but really, you could put this sistah in a burlap sack and she'd still be freakin' hilarious and amazing.

And speaking of Golden Globes vs. SAG Awards fashion, which Gabourey Sidibe ensemble do we like more?:

Golden Globes

SAG Awards.

My vote is for the SAG-blue number. I personally think all the "rhinestones" on the green dress are kinda "TJ Maxx salesrack". Hell, for all I know, they could be real emeralds. I'm just sayin' . . . from here, it looks a little "Isaac Mizrahi for Wal-Mart".

Please note my heavy use of "quotations" to denote my "opinions" in the previous "paragraph".

Can I also take this moment to say -- I hope we see more of Gabourey in Hollywood. Apparently, there are some people out there who don't quite understand that she's an actress. Yeh, and guess what -- Mariah Carey isn't a social worker, either! It's, like, make-believe!

Now for more people I love and the clothes they are wearing . . .

Carey Mulligan . . . my girl-crush of the week . . .

Betty White, my girl-crush of all time!

Jane Lynch, you were robbed!

Now, it seems that some media outlets have labeled Mad Men's Christina Hendricks a "big girl". Say wha? I don't see it . . .

Um, yeh -- she has boobs. Just like our awesome-hot friend, Penelope Cruz:

Those aren't "big girls", people. Those are women who look like actual women and not tanned, botoxed lollipop sticks. I would gladly swap bods with Christina Hendricks. Or Helen Mirren, for that matter:

And finally -- while both of these looks might have been trashed by the rag-mags, I give these girls snaps for doin' their thing:

Am I the only one who really enjoys this sparkly hoodie number? It's for an after-party, people! Come on!

I'll stand by you, Amanda Palmer! I'll stand by you!