Sunday, December 28, 2008

Infomercials are stupid unless they're for something I want

I've been watching tv lately - since I got home.
This infomercial keeps coming on for the Bender Ball - it's an ab exercise thing.
It's not really a new concept in the fitness world, but I'm sooooo irrationally annoyed by this one girl on the infomercial.
She says, "I love my abdominals. Yes, I love my belly. I love my abdominals."
Who says that?
I love my abdominals?
Shut up.
Love your belly, your stomach, even your abs - but not your abdominals.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Joyeux Noel

In honor of spending Christmas in Paris with my little sister (who is living here this year), my mom, and the babe, I bring you a second rendition of English-French-English blogging.

It's afternoon here on Christmas. Breakfast has been eaten. Gifts have been given. Pictures have been taken (including many cheesy smiles with scarves and shirts and necklaces). Inappropriate sex jokes have been made. The babe has experienced her first Christmas morning with the gentiles. It's been good times.

We ran ourselves ragged in gorgeous Prague for three days beforehand, but we had a delightful time. We went to the Jewish quarter, saw the Prague castle, went into (somewhere close to one million) tourist shops, and listened to a magnificent concert by the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra.

Highlights from the trip have included my sister surprising us at the airport and scaring the crap out of me, all of us making fun of my mom for her corny sense of humor, me having to run back to the hotel without everyone else so that I didn't have an accident in my pants, mom getting yelled at by a scary slavic woman, all of us being shameful Americans and delighting in the presence of Starbucks (both for the beverages and the bathrooms), a ridiculously fast and terrifying escalator in the Prague metro (which the babe described as getting sucked into a vortex), and the babe and I sharing a tissue while we watched It's a Wonderful Life.

For those of you who read French:

C'est l'après-midi ici Noël. Le petit déjeuner a été mangé. Les cadeaux ont été donnés. Les images ont été prises (y compris beaucoup de sourires de fromage avec les écharpes et les chemises et les colliers). Les plaisanteries inopportunes de sexe ont été faites. Le bébé l'a éprouvée premièrement Noël matin avec les gentils. Cet a été de bons temps.

Nous nous sommes courus déchiqueté dans Prague magnifique pendant trois jours d'avance, mais nous avons eu un temps charmant. Nous sommes allés au quart juif, a vu le château de Prague, est entré dans (quelque part proche à un million) les magasins de touriste, et a écouté un concert magnifique par l'Orchestre Philharmonique tchèque.

Les essentiels du voyage ont inclus ma soeur nous étonnant à l'aéroport et à effrayer la foutaise de moi, nous tous nous moquant de ma maman pour son sens à la guimauve d'humour, me dois la course de retour à l'hôtel sans tous les autres pour que je n'ai pas eu un accident dans mes pantalon, maman obtenant hurlé à par une femme slave effrayante, nous tous sommes Américains honteux et Enchanter dans la présence de Starbucks (pour les boissons et les salles de bains), un ridiculement rapidement et terrifier l'escalator dans le métro de Prague (que le bébé a décrit comme obtenant sucé dans un tourbillon), et le bébé et je partageant un tissu pendant que nous avons regardé c'Est une Vie Merveilleuse.


And for those of you who have a sense of humor (back to English):

This is the afternoon here Christmas. The breakfast was eaten. The gifts were given. The pictures were taken (including a lot of mice of cheese with the scarves and the shirts and the necklaces). The inopportune jokes of sex were done. The baby tested it first Christmas morning with the kind ones. This was good times.

We ran ourselves torn in magnificent Prague for three days in advance, but we had a charming time. We went to the Jewish quarter, saw the castle of Prague, entered into (somewhere close to a million) the stores of tourist, and listened a concert magnificent by the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra.

The essential ones of the trip included my sister astonishing us to the airport and to frighten the bullshit of me, we all making fun of of my mom for his direction to the humor guimauve, has me the return race to the hotel without all the others for that I had not an accident in my pants, mom obtaining yelled to by a woman Slav frightful, we all Delight in the presence of Starbucks (for the drinks and the bathrooms), a ridiculously quickly and terrify the escalator in the subway of Prague (that the baby described as obtaining sucked in a whirlwind), and the baby and I dividing a fabric while we looked at this is a Wonderful Life.

Monday, December 15, 2008

From the sad halls of law...

I'm writing this post from school. That's not a big deal for those of you who are still taking finals (gooooooo you guys!), but I'm finished with finals. And yet, here I am. Printing out articles to read while I'm on vacation. The glory of having to write a note. Who signed up for this? Oh right. It was me. Hey, 1Ls out there, remember that you don't HAVE to do a journal. Make sure you really want to first. I'm sure when I finish this note and (hopefully) get it published, I'll be glad that I did it. But right now it's annoying.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Oh boy...er...girl

I've found out about a solution to the whole our planet is being wrecked by pollution problem, but it's not getting the air time that it deserves. So I'm spreading it through my blog. Twelve people CAN make a difference! Tell your friends...

POLLUTION MAKES BOYS WITH TINY PENISES

POLLUTION MAKES BOYS MORE FEMALE


I figure if a few people spread this along, by the end of the week the pollution problem will be solved.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Finalz Overload? We Haz It

Scene: On the phone outside the library.

me: Okay, well I just wanted to call and tell you that I love you.

the babe: Wait. I wanted to tell you about this realization that i had.

me: ok

the babe: It's not just that kittens are cuter than puppies. The cat people are just funnier than the dog people. I mean, the funniest dog ones are the ones that have cats in them.

me: I know! That's what I've been saying all along. They're just funnier.

the babe. I know. You were right.

me: How does that make you feel?

the babe: It makes me want a cat.

Friday, December 5, 2008

You know it's good...

when your notes look like this:

10.7.08

Mock debriefing.
Holy lord - what the hell is going on???



Gotta love government contracts.

For all you bloggers out there.

"Words, of all sorts, have never seemed so now."

Andrew Sullivan's take on the blogging world is definitely worth a read.

I don't pretend to be anywhere close to the realm of Andrew Sullivan, but I do claim a connection just by virtue of my being a blogger. And I guess that's one of the nice things about blogging.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I can't quit you

Not that I wanted to or anything. It was really more NaBloPoMo than you. Blasted NaBloPoMo....


Anyway, I'm back.


HI! (You can't see me, but I'm waving.)


It looks like this.



Okay, we can talk later about the horrible accident that mangled my hand and left me without a nose and with one eye larger than the other. I'm not really ready to talk about the loss of the rest of my body. Anyway, don't you know it's rude to bring that kind of stuff up? You're supposed to wait until the other person does.
Seriously. Geez.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

til next year....just kidding

IT'S THE LAST DAY OF NABLOPOMO!!!! DONE! FINISHED! I SHALL BREATHE AGAIN!!!!

lalalalalalalllalalalalaalalaalaaaaalalaalala

That's the sound of me singing and dancing around my apartment.

F*ck

That's the sound of me banging my knee into a piece of furniture and then remembering that I'm supposed to be studying not frolicking.




Don't call me. I'll call you.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Is it seriously still November?

cat
more animals

Okay, lesson learned. NaBloPoMo not a good idea for me.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Holiday Observations

I leave Atlanta tomorrow and head back home to DC. It's been interesting being home this time. I've been watching my family relax and enjoy the weekend while I've been prepping for exams. There's been some jealousy. I won't pretend that there hasn't been.

But mostly I've been noticing how tightly I cling to any moments of free time I have, how much pressure I put on those moments, how I want to use them perfectly, suck every bit of pleasure possible out of them. And I'm noticing that my mom and her husband don't do that. They putter, they close their eyes for a few minutes while they're reading, they stand around in the hard while the dogs are pooping. They don't guard every moment like it's worth a million dollars.

I miss that. I miss feeling like there's some room to play, some room to flamboyantly waste time.
I know that the holiday break is going. But it's only a respite.

I'm hearing my mom's voice in my head telling me how lucky I am to have the opportunity to go to law school, to a good school. To do this after I've already gone to college and graduate school. I know that's true.

But right now I'm just tired.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Haricot vert

I didn't truly experience green beans until I was 19. I'd had some green beans on my own, of course. I mean, where there's a hunger....

At any rate, I enjoyed green beans with the boy for a few years. It was nice. I loved him. We had special green beans.

And then there were some years of struggle. I couldn't figure out what kind of green beans I should be partaking of. Canned green beans? Fresh green beans? Frozen green beans? French cut? Green bean casserole? Green beans almondine?

Eventually it became clear. Green beans were best enjoyed in the company of a lady.

And then best enjoyed in the company of one particular lady.
Wooh, GREEEEEEN BEEEAAAANS!!!!!

Thank goodness for green bean blessings.

If you're confused, go here.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Poem

My brain is mush
It can only go sqush

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

It's Never Too Late to Say You're Sorry

Dear Girls Sitting on Either Side of Me on the Plane,

I'm sorry. I'm very, very sorry. I tried not to sneeze. I promise I did. I realize there's a limited amount of air in there, and I really didn't want to be breathing back in that snotty breath either. But I had no choice. And really, with regard to the constant nose blowing - I think it was preferable to just allowing the snot to run down my face, which might have been gross enough to force one or the other of you to take advantage of the little baggy in your seat.

If you send me the receipts for your Vitamin C, Echinacea, Ricola, Halls, etc, I'll send you a check and a bonus box of kleenex.

With sincere apologies,

(In)Sanity Gal

Monday, November 24, 2008

Advance Apology to All the NaBloPoMo-Haters

I've been cursing NaBloPoMo in my head.

Which led me to come up with other things that it could stand for:


Naughty Blond Porn Month


Okay, so I couldn't come up with anything else. But that one's funny.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

We find the blogger guilty on all counts

We all have our guilty pleasures. Some of us have more than others. Some of us indulge more than others. Some of us feel guiltier than others.

Don't lie and pretend you don't have them. I know the truth.
Mine get worse during finals. Little guilty pleasure demons start screaming at me.

Buy me!

(not the dude or his little game toy - the sweet ass fleece blanket with arms!)

Eat me!

Read me!


Drink me!

Watch me!



Some of these things I haven't encountered in years, and all the sudden in the middle of fascinating reading about statutes, they'll pop up into my mind and drive me slowly crazy until I leave my apartment, go to the grocery store, walk down aisles that never see me, and knock over an innocent bystander to get to the box with the happy leprechaun on it.

I haven't done it yet, but if you're in the cereal aisle, watch out.

What are your guilty pleasures? Come on, dish...


Saturday, November 22, 2008

And here I thought I was all the colors of the rainbow

So I've been bopping along in my life for a while thinking that I was being my own person - or at least trying to be my own person. At least since I passed the age 16 or so. I've been figuring myself out, taking in new ideas, broadening my horizons, learning more about the world around me. I've felt proud of myself. I've relished in a sense of accomplishment.



And then I was introduced to this blog.



And I realized that I've actually had no part in any of this personal development. That I'm just another one on the path to becoming a classic white person.



All these things I thought were part of my personal developmental journey - nope.



Wanting to learn a new language? Nope.

Getting into yoga? Nope.

Going anti-"the man"? Nope.

Doing insane amounts of post-graduate education? Nope. And Nope. And Nope.

Wanting to move to Canada? Nope.

Dreaming of raising multilingual children? Nope.

Being hyped up on the environment? Nope.

Wanting to help poor people? Nope. And Nope.

Riding my bike to work? Nope.

Going organic? Nope. And Nope. And Nope.

Developing an infatuation with NPR? Nope.

Saying goodbye to Jesus? Nope.

Reconnecting with my nature-loving side? Nope.

Getting all excited about political change? Nope. And Nope.

Fantasy-planning my round-the-world vacation? Nope.

Running a marathon? Nope.

Experimenting with mental transformation? Nope.


So, basically I've spent the last 28 years of my life becoming a giant cliche. Hot.

And I've been so angsty about it. I think the plan from here on out is just to read the blog on a daily basis and figure out the next step in my personal development from there. Much less messy.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Spreading the Hope

When my mom was here a few weeks ago, we visited the Botanical Gardens and then chatted as we walked down to the mall before we had to part ways. When we got to the mall, there was some sort of giant event going on. I had no idea what it was, but there were tons of people and music and booths. I thought maybe it was some sort of crafts festival or something - which would get me super excited. I was wrong.

We had stumbled upon Tents of Hope. I had never heard of it before, but it was a really beautiful thing to see. Dozens and dozens of tents that have been decorated and are being sent to refugee camps in Darfur. A lot of them were simply gorgeous.








I opened the flap on one and stepped inside. Gorgeous or not, I cannot imagine the lives of those people. I pray that the beautiful designs on the tents and the spirit in which they were sent may give them some hope in the midst of all of their sorrow.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Post in Which She Admits to Everyone That She's Lost It


Yep, I spent time drawing that on the paint application. I blame NaBloPoMo.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Saying goodbye to fifteen...

When I opened my blogger account this evening, there was something different. In the upper right-hand corner of my dashboard, there was something blinking. It was a notification that I, I (In)Sanity Gal, have (and a hush fell over the room) a follower.

The event brought on a certain level of nostalgia over my younger days when people were clamoring to follow me.

Ha.

The event actually brought on a reminiscing of all of those days that I desperately wished that someone would want to follow me or that some cool kid might lower themselves enough to let me follow them. But no, I sort of sat around neither following nor being followed, which in retrospect, is probably a good thing. But at the time it felt somewhere between unbearable (in middle school) and uncomfortable (in high school).

I really wanted to be a "cool kid." I had moments. In 8th grade when I moved to the small town, I was new and, thus, interested. I went steady with a Cool Boy. I slept over at The Coolest Girl's house. A lot actually. We were sort of almost besties. Of course you wouldn't have said that then. But there were some other girls who I knew could see right through me. I heard them once talking about my poor clothing choices. Instead of being annoyed and deciding that I didn't want them as friends anyway, I was just embarrassed and sort of irrationally angry at my parents - for not having more money, for not caring more about appearances, for not having more attractive offspring.

And then high school started. And The Coolest Girl became a cheerleader, and so did those other girls. And I joined the band.

As much as I try to convince the babe that the band was not that dorky at my high school, she never believes me. It's true in a lot of ways. There were some "cool kids" in the band. And there were a lot of kids who sort of bridged the gap and hung with both crowds.

But on the girl end, the cheerleaders were cool. On the boy end, it was the guys who apparently did nothing. Go figure.

It wasn't me, though. I think in part it was because they could smell it on me. That desire to be one of them.

And yet, it was sort of a mixed desire. I wanted to be one of them and disliked them as well - disliked their fickleness and their pettiness. In truth, I figure they were pretty much like me - just with another friend group. Trying to make it through high school and figure out who they were as people and what they wanted. It was so hard to see that at the time, though.

I was telling someone a story about high school recently, and I couldn't remember one of those girl's names. It made me laugh. I spent four years thinking that they were so important.

What's sad about that is high school was really great. I had great friends. I did really well in my classes. I loved being in the band. I learned how great theatre was. It was great. It seems sad that I spent any time at all thinking about whether or not I was a cool kid.


I guess what I'm trying to say here is Thank You, Virgin - for letting me lay that wish to rest.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Audience Participation Segment

One day I won't be in law school anymore. And then I will read for pleasure. P-L-E-A-S-U-R-E.

There's really nothing like making a book list for procrastination. So, here's mine (in no particular order)*. Your job is to tell me in the comments how incredibly tragic it is that I have left off the amazing [insert your favorite book here]. And......Go!


A Short History of Nearly Everything, Bill Bryson
Night, Elie Wiesel
When You Are Engulfed in Flames, David Sedaris
Three Cups of Tea, Greg Mortenson
Creating a World Without Poverty, Muhammad Yunus
Grace (Eventually), Anne Lamott
American Pastoral, Philip Roth
Housekeeping, Marilynne Robinson
The Known World, Edward Jones
Life of Pi, Yann Martel
The Battle for God: A History of Fundamentalism, Karen Armstrong
Full Frontal Feminism, Jessica Valenti
Love in the Time of Cholera, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, Barbara Kingsolver

* I tried to make this list with pictures of the books, but Blogger is being a poo-head.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Letter

Dear DC Metro Riders,


Hello there! I just wanted to send a note to talk about a teensy-tiny little problem that I've been having with you. I know we normally get along quite well, which is really shocking when you think about it, since you're usually all up in my personal space, which makes me sort of cranky. But I don't hold it against you because I understand that you're really just a product of the environment in which you exist - which is, well, the DC transportation system. And really, the metro's better than most of it.


So I'm not talking about personal space here. Except if by personal space, we're talking about the personal space that none of us are going to have when landfills take over our pretty little planet. That's right, my dear metro friends, I'm pulling out the hyperbole. But I promise, it's for a good cause.


I'm talking newspapers, people. Any type of newspaper you could want, you can get here. And you can get a bunch of them for free. I, for one, am a happy reader of the Washington Post Express. I normally read the news online, but I delight in my free paper and a few moments of luxurious non-law reading while I stand squished in between several of you flowery-scented metro riders. But guess what I do when I'm finished with my paper? I know, I know. You're tired of guessing games. So I'll tell you.
I put it in the recycling bin.


Don't act surprised. It's the giant bin that says NEWSPAPER HERE with a slot in it. It's at the exit of every metro station right next to the trash can. RIGHT NEXT to the trashcan. And I have to say that I am increasingly disappointed by you, my fellow riders, when you stand in front of the recycling bin and throw your newspaper into the trash can.


I get that sometimes you're busy and don't have time to take that environmentally-conscious step. It happens to me. I feel shame, but it happens. I forgive you for that. I forgive me for that. I forgive all human-kind for our overworked, forgetful sometimes lack of recycling. I do.


But I'm telling you now - the next person I see stand in front of a perfectly good recycling bin and reach past it to throw their newspaper into the trash is going to get strapped to a chair and have their eyes held open while I force them to stare at this creepy picture of Al Gore for 24 hours.

Kisses!

(In)Sanity Gal

Sunday, November 16, 2008

What a Girl Wants

I don't normally do memes, but I'm losing my mind working on an assignment that's due tomorrow. That makes posting a wee bit difficult. And this one's kind of creative.

Also, Virgin tagged me, which makes me feel loved.

So, what I have to do is put my itunes on shuffle, then answer the questions that follow with the song name that comes up when I hit the "next" button. And hence, bring forth the answers to the questions that burden your soul about me. [I have to say, this was sort of unnerving on some counts. Also, it was a bit weird b/c this is the itunes account that my ex and I shared, so I don't even know some of these songs. But some of the titles...hmmm...]

Behold:

IF SOMEONE SAYS "IS THIS OKAY" YOU SAY?
"Taste this" - Mya

WHAT WOULD BEST DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONALITY?
"Circle" - Barbra Streisand

WHAT DO YOU LIKE IN A GUY/GIRL?
"The Nearness of You" - Norah Jones

HOW DO YOU FEEL TODAY?
"Cherry Pie" - Marvin & Johnny

WHAT IS YOUR LIFE'S PURPOSE?
"I Believe/You'll Never Walk Alone" - Barbra Streisand

WHAT IS YOUR MOTTO?
"Take it From Here" - Justin Timberlake

WHAT DO YOUR FRIENDS THINK OF YOU?
"Ain't That Lovin' You Baby?" - Jimmy Reed

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT VERY OFTEN?
"This Moment" - Melissa Etheridge

WHAT IS 2+2?
"Summer Time" - Billy & Stuart

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF YOUR BEST FRIEND?
"Red House" - Jimi Hendrix

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THE PERSON YOU LIKE?
"Hooked on a Feeling" - B.J. Thomas

WHAT IS YOUR LIFE STORY?
"Angel from Montgomery" - The Angels

WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU GROW UP?
"Ain't No Sunshine" - Bill Withers

WHAT DO YOU THINK WHEN YOU SEE THE PERSON YOU LIKE?
"Will You Still Love Me?" - Melissa Etheridge (well, that's depressing)

WHAT DO YOUR PARENTS THINK OF YOU?
"Feelin' the Same Way" - Norah Jones

WHAT WILL YOU DANCE TO AT YOUR WEDDING?
"Lovesong" - Ellis

WHAT WILL THEY PLAY AT YOUR FUNERAL?
"Come on Home" - Indigo Girls (man, i hope so)

WHAT IS YOUR HOBBY/INTEREST?
"Someone to Watch Over Me" - Julia Fordham

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST SECRET?
"Last Day" - Blessid Union of Souls

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF YOUR FRIENDS?
"Drug State" - Vincent and Mr. Green

WHAT'S THE WORST THING THAT COULD HAPPEN?
"Foolish Little Girl" - The Shirelles

HOW WILL YOU DIE?
"Hey Rose" - Girlyman

WHAT IS THE ONE THING YOU REGRET?
"Last Call" - Kanye West

WHAT MAKES YOU LAUGH?
"Cherchez la Femme" - Gloria Estefan

WHAT MAKES YOU CRY?
"Let Me Be the One" - Blessid Union of Souls

WILL YOU EVER GET MARRIED?
"Long Journey" - The Angels

WHAT SCARES YOU THE MOST?
"Storybook Life" - Blessid Union of Souls

DOES ANYONE LIKE YOU?
"Hey No" - Halcyon (well, this is seriously depressing)

IF YOU COULD GO BACK IN TIME, WHAT WOULD YOU CHANGE?
"Shoot the Moon" - Norah Jones

WHAT HURTS RIGHT NOW?
"Let it Rain" - Amanda Marshall

WHAT WILL YOU POST THIS AS?
"What a Girl Wants" - Christina Aguilera (nice)

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Totally rained on my parade

Protest Day:

1:30 - leave the apartment. later than we had planned, of course. it's ridiculously warm outside, especially cause we're prepped for gross, cold, rainy weather.

1:45 - on the metro, planning to get off at Archives/Navy Mem'l and walk to the reflecting pool.

2:00 - walking down Pennsylvania Ave. Hmm...there's a protest going on here, but I'm pretty sure that no one at the Prop 8 protest would be waving a Chinese flag. We step into the street to try to see whether we can get around this group of protestors. Aaaaah! We're back on the sidewalk! We're back on the sidewalk! Dear god. A police officer just screamed at us as if we had stepped off the sidewalk and proceeded to pull out machine guns.

2:01 - talk to friend A, who is at the Prop 8 protest, who tells us that they're not going to start marching anytime soon.

2:02 - realize that these are Free Tibet and Pro-China protestors.

2:03 - try pushing through them to cross the street.

2:04 - ask one of the numerous police officers - AAAaaah! We're back on the sidewalk! We're back on the sidewalk! Oy. Stand ON THE SIDEWALK while asking a police officer when we are going to be able to cross the street.

2:05 - learn that the protestors are waiting for the motorcades going to the G20 summit. learn that we cannot cross the street until the motorcade is over.

2:06 - decide to wait...

2:20 - have lost partial hearing in both ears from very talented protestor screaming "China Is A Liar!"

2:25 - police officer in front of us stiffens and looks concerned...hand goes to gun.

2:25.5 - i stiffen and look concerned...hand goes to the babe.

2:25.75 - realize that some of the Free Tibet protestors are getting into a scuffle with some of the Pro-China protestors.

2:26 - police car pulls up. tough guy police officer gets out. has a billy club. slaps it on his hand. moves into crowd and begins shoving people apart. babe and i try to make ourselves smaller.

2:27 - more police officers. much pushing. random folks trying to take pictures. officer shoves random woman. random woman calls officer a dickhead. the babe and smoosh closer together.

2:29 - calmer...

2:35 - hear police officer say that the street could be closed for another 30 or 45 minutes.

2:36 - curse. decide to try to get to the protest some other way.

2:37 - wander down some random streets. talk to a police officer. realize there's no way we're getting around this. talk to friend A again, who says they're marching now. decide to get on metro and try to meet them.

2:45 - rain.

2:46 - downpour.

2:47 - sideways rain.

2:50 - get into metro station. drenched. see would-be protestors folding up soaked signs and throwing them away because they couldn't cross Penn Ave to get there.

3:03 - come up escalator stairs at metro center. no rain. call friend A, who is no longer marching. ran away because of the rain. tells us to call another friend. doesn't answer phone.

3:05 - start walking in right (hopefully) direction.

3:08 - hear yelling. good sign.

3:09 - see lots of wet, bedraggled gay people. great sign.

3:11 - "What do we want? EQUALITY!! When do we want it? NOW"

3:15 - meet up with friends at the end spot. cheer. take pictures. sing the national anthem.

3:16 - rain. umbrellas up. cheer...

3:30 - leave the rally. have appointment at 4:00.

What a day - with about 20 minutes of it actually spent protesting Prop 8. After watching the san Diego videos, I wish we had been there with T.

My favorite sign said "When Can I Vote on Your Marriage?" I took a picture, but technical difficulties keep me from posting it.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Spread it around.

Go over to pt-law mom's blog and give her some love. The girl is having a SERIOUSLY bad day...er...year.

through the (crazy) keyhole

This is what the inside of my brain looks like while I read government contracts:

Where the Board went astray... i can't believe our note topic outline has to be 8-10 pages. what the hell am i going to say? oh dear god, this is awful. Where the Board went astray was... just follow the schedule that i made up, and i'll be fine. i have plenty of time to work on the outline tomorrow night. was in failing to heed... my skin feels dry. is it dry in here? i should get some new lotion. my lotion sucks. Where the Board went astray was in failing... it's ridiculous to buy new lotion. i have plenty of lotion. just buck up and use the gross smelly lotion. okay. focus. Where the Board went astray was in failing to heed the different nature of the two separate notice requirements in the suspension clause... dude, that plant looks rough. i think i'm killing it. i seriously need to email my uncle and ask him what to do about it. my apartment is messy. actually, i think it's officially gross. this is gross...what was that sentence about? eh, i'm not on call. moving on...The latter of the two is that... i think i want some almonds. that's silly - i just ate breakfast. no almonds. i wonder if this would make a good blog post. i should probably take a shower. shit is it already 11:30? this stupid reading takes for flippin' ever. ugh.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Unexpected Packages

About seven years ago on a chilly evening, I snuggled next to my mom while we watched television in her room. My sister was downstairs having a slumber party, and Mom and I were upstairs dining on cheez-its, grapes, and a bottle of ridiculously sweet wine.


My parents had separated in late July.

My heart was broken. I was disappointed and disillusioned. Angry. And scared. So scared...


I clung to my mother, to all of the safety and comfort and constance that she provided. And I comforted her, often because I didn't know how to comfort myself.


But on that night, we relaxed and ate and drank and watched a marathon of Murder She Wrote. We allowed ourselves to fall into the delusional happily-ever-after world of J.B. Fletcher, where even when people are murdered, it all ends with a smile. Where the right person always gets it in the end. Where there's never injustice. Where you can rest assured that no lie will remain unexposed for more than an hour. Where Jessica will never let you down.


Where you can trust without any doubt that it will all turn out ok in the end.




And I guess, as I look at the saved programs on my DVR seven years later, Angela Lansbury is still helping me heal.




Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Granny Attack


This ad greeted me as I turned to page 4 of the Washington Post Express this morning.

WTF?!

That's what I thought.

Why did I think this?

Because I'm old.

I bet if there were any 15 year olds out there reading this, they were probably all "whatev" cause they see this kind of stuff all the time.

The same thing happened to me recently when I saw a music video during a class presentation. I didn't even know there were music videos anymore. And then this thing with bare asses (women's asses, mind you. no men's asses) all over everywhere grinding up against stuff. WTF?!

It's not that I'm a prude or particularly innocent or anything. It's just that I thought there were some sort of basic boundaries floating around out there.

I guess I'm being sort of hypocritical because if it were a piece of art (the ad, not the video), I'd find it all edgy and bold. But on page 4 of the paper, I found it mildly traumatizing.

It's a new sign in a long line of aging indicators - like my plethora of gray hairs and penchant for Murder She Wrote.

When I was about 18, my mom went on a tyrade about my Victoria's Secret catalogs and how they would've been wrapped in plastic covering when she was growing up - "I mean, they're basically porn!" And I was all "whatev."

Of course, she was over 40 at the time. This does not bode well for me.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Other people say it better

There's been a lot of discussion lately about Prop 8 and role of African American voters. It's been a major topic of blogging and conversation at my school and among my blogger friends and around lunch tables and over gchat. Mostly my friends are white and while we think of ourselves as liberal and accepting, there's admittedly been a certain perspective lacking.

If you're hoping that I am now going to start a reasoned discourse on this topic, you're about to be disappointed. I'm not. You might have noticed from my recent posts that being reasonable is not my strong suit right now. I'm on the edge.

But I read a post today about this whole issue that I found to be incredibly reasoned, and so for those who are looking for something like that, I'm pointing you to it.

A teaser:


In order to address homophobia in the black community, we have to be able to acknowledge that it exists without people of color and "allied" white liberals knee-jerk calling anyone who does so a "racist." Calling each other names and then angrily retreating back to our own segregated little corners of the world because some things are too "taboo" to acknowledge won't get us anywhere near addressing this. White LGBT people need to acknowledge white privilege and call people out for making asinine, racist comments on the internet and in the public sphere. Just because you are gay it doesn't give you a free pass to be racist or sexist.

These discussions are too important for that kind of stunted knee-jerk type of thinking.

Not only does homophobia contribute to the escalating rates of HIV/AIDS in the black community, but the denial of marriage rights for gay men and lesbians is unfair discrimination, inequality, and intolerance that stamps gay people with a badge of inferiority.

I anticipate realizing Obama's promise of hope and change for all Americans. I celebrate what his victory means for our nation and to African-Americans. As one commenter here said a few days ago, it's a great time to have a black Democrat in the White House. Now, we have work to do. We are all harmed when the rights of some of us are taken away or denied. Even though the injustices we face are different, I remain in solidarity with all people who face true injustice.

Monday, November 10, 2008

If you're a 1L, stop reading.

Dear Anyone Who Said/Suggested/Intimated that 2L Year Would be Easier,

I am writing this letter as a courtesy. Keep in mind that I do not have to - that I could carry out my plan without warning you first. But I am kind. Unlike you, oh hateful soul.

I suggest that you pull together your valuables and your loved ones (if someone so evil as you has any of those) and get thee to a safe place. Because the fury which I am about to let loose on you and all that you love has not been seen.

I don't want to give everything away, but I'll give you a teaser.




Cheers,

(In)Sanity Gal *



*If you'd like to suggest that my anger may be misplaced, please see above.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Fried

This is your brain.





This is law school.






This is your brain on law school.







Any questions?

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Shop-o-Rific

One of my favorite things about flying is the SkyMall catalog. I'm constantly delighted by the crazy things that people are selling, and I wonder who buys this stuff. So, because I seem to have lost the ability to actually blog, and NaBloPoMo is breathing down my neck, I'm going to give you some of my SkyMall favorites.

The Most Up to Date Talking Globe



Because you certainly wouldn't want the previous Behind the Times Talking Globe. For just $179.95 you can get "the world's most current talking globe because it connects to a PC and allows you to download weekly updates about nation states, governments, political boundaries, culture, and more." Because if a globe doesn't talk, what good is it? Seriously.

The Beverage Buggy


That's right my friends. Con your spouse, child, neighbor, sibling into placing two cans of thirst-quenching goodness into this remote-controlled buggy and zoom it right over. The important thing to note here, I think, is that if it's remote-controlled, then once it's out of the "driver's" sight, it's useless. So you have to be pretty freakin' lazy to force someone to use this. I mean, you can see where they're sending it from.

The Nano Wand Scanner



For the germophobes out there, just wave it over any area and it "kills 99.9% of bacteria in 10 seconds." Or you could use it to stage your own home episode of CSI.

Poop Freeze


I'm not sure I can say anything about this better than what they've already told us: "Poop Freeze is an easy, earth-friendly way to do your "dooty" and clean up after your dog. It chills animal waste to -62°F, creating an outer "crust" that enables you to quickly place in a bag and dispose. Makes picking up loose stool and diarrhea easier. Effective for all kinds of pets, including dogs, cats, birds, etc. Indoor or outdoor use. Safe for humans and pets when used as directed."
Key point here: You don't have to use the toilet anymore. You can just poop on the floor, freeze it, and clean it up later.

Brightfeet Lighted Slippers



"It's like having nightlights on your feet." And who doesn't want that? However: "Note: It may take 4 to 5 steps for the LEDs to activate the first time slippers are worn. Remember, Bright Feet Lighted Slippers light up only in the dark." So if you run into the door in your first 4 steps, don't blame SkyMall. And if you need the lights in the daytime, well, I don't know what to tell you.

Makes you want to take a trip, doesn't it?

Friday, November 7, 2008

The results of law school procrastination

My mom is visiting.

Mom: Could I have a glass of ice water?

Me: No.

Mom: (confused silence)

Me: You can have water. I don't have any ice.

Mom: (looking in the freezer at the 6 ice trays - looking back at me)

Me: All chicken stock. 6 trays full of chicken stock.

Law school may make me into an amazing chef. Or just a really prolific one.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Puking optional

In the midst of all of the election ups and downs this week, the babe and I celebrated our one year anniversary.

One year ago the babe held my hands in hers and looked deeply into my eyes as I said, "sushi sounds great to me."

And thus the dating began.

In honor of the occasion, I give you...

Ten Reasons I Love/Adore/Go Weak in the Knees For The Babe:

1. The babe has impeccable taste.

Besides loving moi, there are a few things that point out the babe's ability to discern the best from all the rest. Her celebrity crush is Tina Fey. Obviously an excellent choice. She prefers to eat only organic, locally grown/raised food. Doesn't get much better than that. Her favorite television show is Six Feet Under. Now, I've never seen it, but every time I talk to anyone about it, they sigh deeply and shake their head in that oh-those-were-the-greatest-moments-of-my-life kind of way. The place she dreams of living is a farmhouse with a lot of land in Burlington, Vermont. Duh.

2. The babe is no slave to fashion.

I like clothes. A lot. I stare into store windows as I pass them. I dream about them. In fact, last night I had a dream about this fabulous pair of black cowboy boots with white cut-outs that just sort of miraculously showed up in my closet and went beautifully with the black skirt I was wearing. It was great...

Anyway, the babe is not about that. It's not that she's fashion challenged (that might be a different story). No, she's just relaxed about it. She likes what she likes. Doesn't feel a need to follow the trends. Although she could show up at my door wearing a pair of men's flannel-lined Carhartts: But what can I say? It just makes me love her more.

3. The babe has emotions, and she knows how to use them.

I'm a little bit emotional. Like I cry in commercials emotional. And sometimes moody. And maybe difficult. These qualities have let me to have excessively (or maybe not) high regard for things like therapy and yoga and faith and Pema Chodron. The Babe also has a high regard for these things.

When I say things like, "I'm just having a hard time being compassionate with myself right now," she furrows her brow in that gentle, loving way and puts her arm around me. When I say, "I don't know where I fit in a faith community. I don't know what that looks like," she knods her head knowingly. And she lets me do the same for her.

I know. Lesbians.

4. The babe is smart.

On a recent long car trip, the babe talked to me for about two hours about the economy. And when I say "talked to me," I mean taught me everything there is to know, including what the Dow Jones is because, my dear friends, economics is an area where I am, shall we say, dumb. But the great thing about the babe - she never makes me feel that way. She's like a little current affairs encyclopedia, but I never feel stupid around her. I just feel really glad that she can answer all of my questions and maybe make me look smarter by association.

This also means she can go head to head with my dad. Which is a whole other post for another day. But it's good.

5. The babe has played in the dirt.

The babe has expressed concern that if she had never worked on an organic farm, I wouldn't be with her. Good thing she'll never have to find out. I kid! But seriously, it's a good thing she did. No - I'm joking! I love her! Seriously.

But I love it that she worked on an organic farm and that she gets all riled up about things like how to appropriately plant grass seed. Lots of people are all down with the organic/local movement, but how many people decide that they really want to be a part of it? Not many. But that's the kind of gal the babe is.

6. The babe is in love with a dog.

It was hard for me to accept at first - not being her only love. But after having spent more time with the cute pup, I get it. I'm sort of in love with him too. And if she wants to snuggle with him instead of me, I understand. As long as I get to snuggle with him next.

7. The babe is funny.

Don't tell her I told you, because she kind of gets a big head about these things. But the babe is funny. Mostly because she's a goob and doesn't mind looking silly. Also, after she does something funny, she invariably laughs and says "I'm funny," which is always funny.

8. The babe has an excellent vocabulary.

Having gotten my BA in English and MFA in theatre, language is very important to me. A quality vocabulary matters - I can't help it. And the babe's got one. She uses all sorts of great words, and in excellent combinations. Things like, "You're beautiful," or "These are the best cookies ever," or "I'm the luckiest person on earth," or "How did you get to be so amazing?" or my personal favorite, "Tonight we'll snuggle like maniacs." I mean, the word choice, the particularized phrasing - I just don't know what to say. She's obviously wonderful.

9. The babe is exceedingly playful.

The babe grew up with two older brothers. That's right - she's a youngest. I am an oldest. Which, again, is really a whole post for another day. But the important thing for today is that at any given moment, the babe may be poking me, tickling me, trying to stick my hair up my nose, trying to get me to pick my own nose, sticking her finger in my ear, making horrible faces that disturb me, or trying to give me a wedgie.

You may be wondering how those things made it into this list. It seems like they should be on some other list, like Things That Annoy Me About My Five Year Old Brother. It's true - they might be on that list. BUT...sometimes a little levity is a great thing. Sometimes I need to just be ridiculous and silly. Also, it's great training for one day having really annoying children.

10. The babe is my favorite person to be with.

I mean, this is really the main thing after all, isn't it? That I just miss her when she's not around. That I like talking to her and laughing with and just hanging out with her on the couch. That I'd rather study sitting next to her than sitting next to anyone else. (Okay, this might be because she pokes me and gives me longing glances, and then we end up finding some random corner to go make out in, but you get my point.) I like her.


Over the course of writing this, I've come up with about 7,000 other things, but I guess I'll save those for another day. I wouldn't want you to start dry heaving.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

At least the anti-choice folks didn't win

I turned on the computer this morning fully intending to write a glowing, beaming, disgustingly happy post about Obama, about progress and change and the spirit of America. After falling asleep to the sounds of celebration in the streets, I was ready this morning to jump up and down. I had a title ready – “The Bradley Effect can kiss my hot, victorious bootay.” It was good.


And then I sat down and started reading. It started with Virgin in the Volcano. Normally I count on her blog for some laughs, but not this morning. This morning she wrote,

“There were happy honkers here in Boston all night, celebrating Obama's victory and the blue turn of the House and Senate. After 8 years of Bush disasters, people finally had something to look forward to and felt good. But I don't feel good at all. In California, Prop 8, with 91% of the vote reported this morning, looks like it will pass, once again denying homosexuals the right to marry. Florida and Arizona passed props banning gay marriage. Arkansas passed a prop to ban gay couples from adopting. And in California, you know who voted overwhelmingly for Prop 8? Black people.

So exactly what kind of moment is this in history? I don't think it's the amazing triumph the newscasters are touting. A black man became president, sure, but the vote really wasn't for him. The vote was for whomever not connected to Bush, to the Republican party, who has steered the world into the worst economic crisis since the 1920's. People voted for their jobs and pension plans, the value of their mutual funds, the ability to obtain a line of credit. And when those things were not involved, they voted on the same old hateful lines. They voted to say, no faggots welcome.

The new myth of America, the one that drones on about change and humble beginnings, is the old myth of America, and I am tired of it. I am ashamed. I can't protect the people I love from institutionalized hate. My parents will have to pull out their No on 8 signs from the front lawn, feel over and over the ugly things the country has said about their son.”


I read the results of all of the ballot measures. I cried. It’s a resounding blow to gays. A resounding statement that America is not behind us – this hopeful, changing America.

I feel like the cheers were stolen right out of my mouth.

And yet…


Obama DID win. A black man will be the president of the United States of America.


I am disappointed that the country is not where I want it to be.

I am disappointed with the black voters in California.

I am personally hurt by the votes of people who want to deny people like me the right to marry the people we love or to adopt children.


BUT I can’t ignore the import of what happened yesterday. I can’t ignore the fact that the people of this country – black and white and hispanic and asian and everything in between – voted Obama into office.


Despite the pain of these ballot measures, I am moved by this election. I still feel hope. I can’t help myself. In a country where less than 50 years ago, it was not illegal to keep a black man from voting, a black man has become president. That message of hope and change is for all of us – even if today wasn’t our day. This election has shown us that impossibilities are possibilities and that our day will come.

So, I can’t jump up and down, but I won’t cry in the corner either.


Yesterday on my tour of the Supreme Court, the guide pointed out the different animals represented in the architecture of one of the courtyards. Lions to represent protection. Owls to represent wisdom. And turtles to represent the slow and steady pace of justice.

Slow and steady she goes….

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Sex, Poop, and Voting

I voted. For Obama.







It felt good.




Then I got a free cup of coffee.




And then...




I met Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.

She was pretty much exactly like I expected her to be - smart and gracious and busy. I'll steal a bit from the babe's analysis of the meeting and say that aside from not having a discussion involving an in-depth analysis of all of her decisions and what it felt like to be the only woman on the Supreme Court, it was great! :) Of course, that wasn't a possibility, but we got good pictures, and she got us seats to watch the argument that was starting.

And my friends, we could not have chosen a better day to sit in on an argument. We watched FCC v. Fox, in which Fox was arguing against sanctions for single instances of expletive use and the FCC was arguing for the ability to sanction single instances.

It was fabulous!

All of these words/phrases showed up in the hour (some repeatedly):

"Nicole Richie"

"Paris Hilton"

"Cher"

"bawdy jokes"

"the s-word"

"Big Bird dropping the s-bomb"

"Would the word 'dung' be allowed?"

"the f-word"

"sexual and/or excretory"

"What if it's a really funny use of an expletive?"

Seriously - I'm not sure I could've asked for anything better.

Except maybe if someone had mentioned boob grabbing.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Election Buffet

On this, the day before the election, I've got a little bit for everyone.


If you're really annoyed about the republicans' labeling of Obama as a socialist, either a) because you think it's a dirty word, b) because you think it's a beautiful word but Obama's just not it, or c) it really annoys you when people inappropriately use words, then check out this post over at saisai's blog. It's one of the best statements that I've read about what does or doesn't actually constitute socialist policies.


If you want a reason (for some of you, it might be another reason) to dislike McCain/Palin supporters, then read about the woman who put up a sign for trick-or-treaters reading, "No handouts for Obama supporters, liars, tricksters, or kids of supporters." Nice.


If you're tired of this whole thing and just want everyone to shut up, then you might want to venture over to this post at Thanks But No Thanks. Want a teaser? Ok, if you insist - "I'm not sure if you heard, but people who vote for Obama/Biden are vitriolic socialists. People who vote for McCain/Palin are dundering close-minded Neanderthals. Either way, your vote probably indicates that you hate women, Joe the Plumber, and people in general."


If you're concerned about a president who might not take the nation's problems seriously. Rest assured that Barack Obama isn't actually a big jokes-man. He's eloquent and knowledgeable - but not really all that funny. Which is fine by me.


Oh, I guess I left out the McCain/Palin supporters.

Oops.

My bad.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

This just in. Breaking news.

Virgin in the Volcano is clearly no virgin.* Or maybe she's a virgin in the I'm-still-wearing-my-purity-ring-and-I-haven't-actually-had-intercourse-yet-but-I've-done-everything-else kind of way. At any rate, the shit has hit the fan.

That's right folks. An anonymous source has informed me that Virgin suffered a debilitating wrist injury this past week while performing a hand job. The source claims that the injury was the result of a weekend viagra experiment gone awry.

The source claims that at approximately 4:00 pm on Friday afternoon, a woman fitting Virgin's description ran into the ER, screaming "OOOOH, MY WRIST!!!! DAMN YOU VIAGRA!!!! DAMN YOU!!!!"

Apparently Virgin's co-hort decided to try out a high dose of viagra in the hopes of spicing up some weekend frolicking. Much fun was had. However, after 2 days, the fun just wouldn't go...down. Virgin came up with the brilliant idea of...um...well, shall we say working it out for the poor fellow.

Hence, the wrist injury.

Way to take one for the team, Virgin!

*If you're completely confused by this post, check out the comments on this post and this one.

Tribute to local growers

On a good Sunday morning, you can find me at the farmers market, buying yummy fruits and vegies and occasionally treating myself to some sumptuous baked goodness or a jar of fresh-made preserves. Mmmm....



I was listening to All Things Considered the other day, and they were interviewing a couple who runs an organic farm in Missouri. They have 4 acres, where they grow organic vegetables, and they bring those to farmers markets to sell to folks like me.

But this couple is barely breaking even. In fact, they're not breaking even. They're still in debt from purchasing the farm. They have no health insurance. Their two children get health insurance through Medicaid. They're renovating an old mobile home to live in.


Perhaps they've made poor business decisions. Perhaps they're not cut out to be farmers. But, whatever the reason for their current struggles, my heart went out to them. I thought about them today as I walked around the market and shelled out money (disclosure: it was the babe's money today) for produce that makes me feel healthy and good about the food that I put in my mouth.


I hope they've made enough money this weekend to cover their costs. I hope they're going to dine on a delicious meal this evening. And I hope the people who bought food from them were thankful that there are farmers out there committed to growing healthy, organic food for all of us to enjoy.


Hope you enjoyed the photos from today's market trip.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

The pressure's on.

NaBloPoMo starts today. It's 8:19 pm, and I haven't posted anything. In fact, I've spent all day pretending that I'm jewish and have been relishing in shabbos with the babe. There's not a whole lot to say when all you've been doing is lazing around. My brain is flying frantically from one thought to the next trying to think of something interesting. There's nothing interesting in there, and my government contracts reading is calling me in an angry voice - "Young lady, get your butt into this chair and start this reading, or so help me, I will give you something to write about!" Yes, sir. He's giving me til the count of 3.

Some things that are worth saying this evening before he gets to 2 and 3/4:

  1. I will vote in 3 days. Fingers crossed.
  2. My rent is due on the 6th of every month. That's basically a 6-day grace period. It's a good thing.
  3. I am glad to be alive this evening, and that's a good thing too (actually, it doesn't even belong in the same list as being glad about a 6-day grace period, but that's the nature of the post this evening). Sometimes it's good to be reminded of that.
  4. I met four other people - FOUR - who love How I Met Your Mother. This makes me happy.
  5. In one month and 9 days, I will be finished with this semester. Hallelujah.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Wetting your pants for celebrity status

Because I desperately - desperately - needed another thing to distract me from my brilliant legal studies, tomorrow I begin participating in National Blog Posting Month.

That's right. Starting tomorrow I will post EVERY SINGLE DAY for the month of November.

I know. It's exciting. Try not to pee in your pants.

That would be embarrassing.

But it would give me something interesting to blog about. So...let me know if you do.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Deep Breath - It's a Long One

My dear friend T is very interested in reproductive justice and is involved in the reproductive justice group at school. A few weeks ago, she helped in hosting a panel about sex education. I watched videos of people who specialize in abstinence-only education doing their thing, and I participated in a sample lesson-plan for abstinence-only education. It involves a piece of tape that represents a girl being applied to the arm of a boy (which represents a sexual relationship connection). When he pulls the tape off, it’s not quite as sticky anymore now that his skin/hair debris is on it. The lesson, of course, is that every time you have sex with a different person, your ability to create an intimate bond is lessened. I have so many issues with this lesson that I don’t even know where to start. So I’m not going to. I’m just putting it out there as a jumping off point.

So this was all on my mind when I had brunch with my dear friend C the other day. I told her about the lesson. Turns out she’s got a client right now who teaches the sex ed classes at his Unitarian church. He’s about 65 years old, and she says they’ve been having these wonderful conversations about what he’s teaching and how he’s teaching it. Of course it’s comprehensive – he is a Unitarian, after all. And C has a new interest in it now. Because she has a daughter. Her daughter is only one, but it’s got C thinking about the future and about what she’ll teach her and how she’ll teach it.

We started talking about our own sex education – not at school, necessarily, but in our homes, from our parents. C’s education was the opposite of abstinence-only. Her mom’s basic message was “F*cking feels good. Enjoy it.” You might think that it’s refreshing in its honesty, but C felt like something was missing. She didn’t grow up with a lot of the hang-ups about sex that many people do, but she also didn’t get any messages about the intimacy that you can experience, about making good choices, about how sex is emotional and that sometimes there are emotional consequences. She wants her daughter to get those messages.

And we talked about my sex education. I don’t remember much from school. And I don’t remember very many specific conversations, but I do remember that my parents were pretty open and that I felt like I could talk to them about anything.


I wasn’t without my hang-ups. I grew up in a very religious community in the South – I went to Wednesday evening teen groups at the local Baptist church. I’m not sure who could survive that without hang-ups. One day I’m going to give my long-time high-school / college boyfriend a giant trophy for being such a trooper for the 5 years that we dated. Pretty much every time we took a new step forward in our physical relationship – the first time he went up my shirt, the first time he saw my boob, the first time….well, you get what I’m saying – I would end up crying and telling him that we could never do that again. Of course, a few days or weeks down the road, there we would be again, and I would feel a bit more comfortable with whatever it was we were doing. And there wouldn’t be anymore crying until the next thing.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think a high-school boy is owed anything or should get a medal for sticking with his girl when she doesn’t want to take the next step. It’s more that he was great through all of it, and it wasn’t like he was pressuring me or anything. I was going willingly – I would just have second thoughts afterwards. And then, I think, make him feel really bad about it. And it really wasn’t his fault. At all.

When we were 19, I decided that I was ready. To take the big step. And here’s the really important part. Here’s what I think is a testament to how great my parents were in this respect. I asked my mom to come into my bedroom, and I told her that I was ready to have sex and that I wanted to go on the pill. She didn’t jump up and down or anything. In fact, she had to take a really deep breath. But then she talked to me about it. About making sure that I was safe. And when I asked her questions about what it would feel like or whether it would hurt, she talked to me about that too. She talked to me about her first time and things that I could do to make sure that it was a good experience for me.

And it was. It was with someone who I cared about and who cared about me. Who was careful with me. I was ecstatic, and there was no crying afterwards.

Obviously that relationship ended. And I’ve had other relationships. And other sex. (And I definitely haven’t lost my ability to bond.) I’m a relationship sex person. It’s just who I am and how it works and feels right for me.

But the point is that I had the space and the permission to figure that out about myself. My parents never demonized sex, but they also never pretended like it didn’t have the power to be something really special. And I love that I got both of those messages. Because I think that’s where you get the ability to make the choice that feels right for you.

My children might be ready to sit me down for that conversation when they’re fifteen or sixteen or maybe even earlier. I don’t know. But I hope that I will have created an atmosphere where they feel like they can. And I will take a really deep breath…

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

WOOOOO-HOOOOO!!!!!!

PHILLIES!!!!! WOOOO-HOOO!!!

The babe's crying.
Philadelphia is happy.

What would Sandra Day think?

Because I am an incredibly blessed and lucky person, I have an appointment set up to meet Justice O'Connor next week and have her take me on a tour of the Supreme Court. The babe is coming along.

Though I haven't broadcast this information widely, those friends that know are super jealous.

In fact, two of my dear friends have offered to engage in romantic relationships with me in exchange for an invitation to join me in meeting O'Connor.

J said to me today, "I'll be your girlfriend too. I won't have sex with you because, well, I don't do that. But I'll cuddle. I'm good at cuddling. I'll let you touch my boob."

That's right. She offered a boob grab in exchange for meeting Justice O'Connor.

Unfortunately for J, I'm deeply devoted to the babe and keep all of my boob grabbing for her.

But, being the kind and giving person that I am, I wanted to put this information out there for any of you hoping to hook up with a lady. Supreme Court Justices are the way to go. Pick a Supreme Court Justice and set up a meeting! That lady will be offering all sorts of things in exchange for the opportunity to tag along.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Government = Ridiculous

I just wrote this in my government contracts notes:

"DLA got DPA from GSA to do ADP."

And it's not just blabbery. That actually means something.

One win away

A special post today - for the babe.

I just read an article on ESPN. I have never in my life read an article on ESPN. In fact, I think I've only ever been on the page to look up something once for the babe. And just now I read a whole article - I even read the second page. This is a big deal.

This morning when I grabbed the Washington Post Express as I headed into the metro station, I turned to the sports section. The sports section has previously been known as the section-that-i-skip-over-to-get-to-the-other-sections section. And yet today, I turned to it. And then I got all cranky and crotchety because there was nothing about the World Series. I railed against the paper in my head. "What the eff? What is going on here? Oooh, the Redskins. Big deal. The Phillies are one win away!" This is a big deal.

Off the top of my head, I can name at least seven players and tell you which positions they play. I could tell you right now how the Phillies scored all of their runs last night. This is a big deal.

You could judge me for being a fair-weather fan, but that wouldn't be entirely accurate. It's not like I didn't like the Phillies before because they were losing or something. I just didn't pay much attention to sports in general. I watched with the babe sometimes, and we went to some games together. I always enjoyed it, but I just wasn't invested.

I'm invested now. I sit on the edge of my seat while we watch the games; I gasp and cheer and high five. I care. I'm looking forward to watching the game tonight. That's really not true. I'm anxiously awaiting the game tonight.

I want to cheer for the Phillies and rejoice with all of those fans, like the babe, who have loved them all along, who have cheered for them and believed in them, who get angry when people suggest that their presence here in this World Series is all just luck or a fluke. Who knew that they had it in them.

I want them to win. Tonight.

And yet...

I will be so sad to say goodbye to baseball until next season. I feel like I made a new friend, and I'm going to miss him.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Thank You for Bein' a Friend

Betty White still delivers.


video

I'm going to go watch some Golden Girls re-runs now.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I Am a Real American

Inspired by jen, who I sort of want to be when I grow up.

I sat in my feminist legal theory class yesterday and watched a presentation on critical race feminism. The presenters showed a portion of the video A Girl Like Me. At one point during the video, the creator performs the famous Brown v. Board of Education doll test with young black children. I watched as a young girl chose the black doll in front of her when asked which doll was the bad doll and chose the white doll when asked which doll was the nice doll. She wasn't confused about why. When the interviewer asked, she said, "Cause this one's black...cause this one's white." And then the interviewer asked her which one she looked like. You can see it on her face. She starts to reach for the white doll. She wants desperately to pick up the white doll. But she knows the truth. She picks up the black doll.

I cried.

It's enough to make you want you to cover your head and quit - that over 60 years after the original tests, these kids are still getting that same message.

But we talked about it. We, a room of racially-diverse people, sat and discussed what it means to be black or white or African or Jamaican or female or male in this country. We agreed and we disagreed.

It doesn't fix it, I know. But I think that, for me, it's part of what it means to be A Real American.

It means acknowledging the state of things. It means acknowledging that there are still little black girls in America who think that being black is bad. It means taking that information in and crying about it and breathing it into all of your cells so that you know that when you breath back out into the world, you're breathing out something better.

It means accepting that the history of America is not only one of hope and promise and resourcefulness and freedom, but also one of fear and discrimination and pain and untruths. Not so that we can flog ourselves. But so that we can see it and learn from it and make the conscious choice to do better, to be better.

It means learning to embrace gray. To see the story from the other side, and to see all the myriad of stories that occur in between.

It means embracing your own story, the parts that make you proud and the parts that make you ashamed. It means sitting with the knowledge that you are part of what this country is and that you are part of what it will become.

It means acknowledging what an amazing gift it is to call this place our home and these people our people - this flawed home and these flawed people - and to get to play our own role in its growth.

It means believing that nothing real is perfect.

Starting the day off right

I had to park my bike on the other side of the street last night when I got home. For some reason, there were three bikes already on my side of the street - where there are usually none. At any rate, I parked it and locked it up and went inside.

This morning, I came out with all my stuff and started to unlock it and get it all set up to head to my internship. I was doing this all in front of a building that is having construction work done. Construction men were coming in and out, laying drop-cloths, and doing other construction-prep type things.

Anyway, I get my bookbag netted down to my bike and unlock everything and roll up my pant leg, and something seems not right. Ah! No helmet. I see people everyday who ride without helmets. However, since I prefer my brains inside my skull, I propped up my bike and rushed inside to get my helmet. I walked out of my apartment, helmet in hand, and when I was about 15 steps from my bike, it crashed to the ground. With my bookbag on it. With my laptop in my bookbag.

All of the construction men - about 5 of them - stood and stared at it. I don't know whether any of them had anything to do with it falling over. I'm not suggesting that they did. But nonetheless, they just stood there staring at it. So I ran over and started trying to lift it up, which was a bit difficult since it was all off-balance because of the bookbag strapped to the back of it. The men continued to just stand there, and then they started to laugh. As I struggled to get the bike back to standing, they laughed. And as I struggled to keep it standing while I readjusted my bookbag and made sure that everything was secure, they stood there and watched me.

WHAT THE EFF? Who are these people? Is it so much to help somebody out? And not laugh at them?

And let me just say that I have met some really nice construction workers in my day. Once two years ago, my car was stuck in the snow, and a group of about 7 guys came over and lifted it off of the snow and pushed me into the street. Lifted it. Like actually picked up my car. I didn't ask them. They just came over because they saw that I was struggling. Clearly not the same construction workers.

These guys. I don't even know what to say about these guys.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Pema, are you out there?

Why is compassion so hard?

Let me clarify - why is compassion for myself so hard? Why is it that I'm filled with understanding and compassion for everyone around me, but as soon as I act in a way that feels less than my best, I can't stop beating myself up over it.

Let me clarify again - When I don't do good schoolwork, when I don't give good interviews, when I answer stupidly in class - I'm bothered by these things, but that's not what I'm talking about.

What I'm talking about is when I am rude or selfish or needy or lacking in understanding, when I'm not the kind of person that I want to be.

I used to have a therapist who asked me why I thought I was so special that I got to be perfect. It's a good question.

My therapist now says that the compassion I have for others now is nothing compared to what it could be if I learned to have more compassion for myself.

So I guess all I'm saying is that I'm trying to keep on with this journey - this journey of becoming vehemently imperfect and wildly compassionate.

Monday, October 20, 2008

It's that time of year again

Yes, it is.

Runny nose season.

The season of balled up used tissues in the pockets of all of your coats and jackets and pants. The season of snot residue on the ends of your sleeves because the balled up tissue in your pocket was so snotty as to have basically disintegrated, making it no longer useful for nose-blowing or snot-wiping. The season of knowing that every time you shake someone's hand, there's a little snot-swapping festival occurring. The season of constant fear that at any moment, there may be a tiny droplet of runny snot gleaming on the inside of your nose making the person that you're speaking to incredibly uncomfortable.

Ah, what a special time.

This year, runny nose season has taken on a new and delightful meaning for me. Why? Because I am now a bike rider. Yes, I now experience the pleasure of making frantic calculations as I ride next to as*hole car drivers - if I take my left hand off of the handle right now to wipe the snot from my nose, will I veer and hit the curb or hit the car that is driving ever closer to me? If I take my left hand off of the handle right now, is this car close enough to me that I could shoot a snot rocket onto their window? God, I wish I knew how to blow a snot rocket.

Because I actually do not like to have snot incessantly running down my face, and because I am fearful of wrecking my bike as I try to wipe snot and/or blow my nose (which I have attempted), I have come up with a couple of ideas. 1. Crochet a tiny nose stocking with an elastic cord that goes around my head. It will cover my nose, keep it from getting too cold, and catch any wayward snot. 2. Roll up tissue paper and stick it into my nostrils to soak up any snot while I ride. Of course, I'll have to buy throat lozenges to address the sore throat that I'll have from breathing with my mouth open in the cold. 3. Wear a stick-on mustache while I ride so that all of the snot will get caught in it. This has the added benefit of entertaining passer-by who will try to figure out whether I am a boy or a girl. Of course, I hate all passer-by when I am on my bike, so I'm not sure that I want to entertain them.

Snot. Good times.

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