Saturday, May 17, 2008

Random Thoughts

1. I meant to link to this post over at Shapely Prose last week. It gave me chills and I immediately printed it out and posted it up in my cube.

Check this bit:
"Can I speak to the experience of living in a much larger body? No. Am I fat enough to have faced discrimination and hatred, and to be motivated to fight against those things on behalf of all fat people? Hell, yes.

Exhibit A. I’m walking home from Pilates this afternoon, and I stop for a red light. Light turns green, I start walking across the intersection, and some asshole barrels around the corner, clearly not seeing me. I stop walking and he hits his brakes–with a resounding skreeee–at approximately the same time. We exchange dirty looks, and I take another step–just as asshole hits the gas again, intending to blow past me.



Woman sitting at outdoor cafe across the street: WHAT THE–?

No kidding, lady.

Let’s review. This asshole didn’t look where he was going and nearly hit a pedestrian. Therefore, I deserve to be shamed for the size of my body.

Of course. That’s how it works.

Assholes like that do not look at me and think, “Hmm, she looks only slightly bigger than the average woman.” They do not yell, “YOU FUCKING MILD TO MODERATE CHUB!” They think, “fat chick.” And they yell, “YOU FUCKING WHALE!”

The whole piece is brilliant and spoke to me, as I get a lot of the "but, you're not fat" comments.

2. I mentioned in the wedding post that I felt really lovely and pretty that day and that people were very complimentary. Imagine how disappointed I was IN MYSELF when I saw some of the pictures and the FIRST thing I thought was "my arm looks so fat"????? Not, "wow, we look so happy" or "wow, that dress looked so great" or not, my old reliable, "hey, fab tits." No, the first thing I thought was, "my arm looks so fat." I did pull myself out of it, but I was disppointed that these are still the first things that fill my mind -- and that 59 people can tell me I look fantastic, but the one person who thinks I look like shit is me. It's all a process, but shit, man, this stuff is LONG.

3. Rather than totally beat myself up, I can say that I am 100% proud that I never dieted during the lead up to the wedding. I ran like a maniac and I went to the gym, but I ENJOY that. So, some parts of the process are working.

4. In other links, one of my favorite bloggers is getting married and she wrote the best fucking post about it. YG read it and said, "hey, that's totally us."

5. This was the first Saturday since December, maybe, that we didn't have anything to do. I ran some errands in the morning and then we went for a long walk around Fresh Pond and enjoyed some chips, guacamole and wine while reading magazines and lounging on the couch. I also caught up on two hours of Grey's Anatomy this morning when YG dropped the MG off at her mom's. It was a great day.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Funnies of the Evening

1. YG, upon hearing about the latest scandal on America's Next Top Model: "I didn't even want to watch this season and you sucked me in with the last three episodes. It's like watching the old Red Sox. You watch it, expecting it to be different, and then they only disappoint." You heard it here first, folks: ANTM...just like the Red Sox.

2. The MG is reading a "kid-friendly" version of Little Women where, get this, Beth doesn't die. WTF? We watched the movie with the MG so that she could see that Beth does indeed die and she was still confused and convinced it was a mistake. YG: "Look, she dies, okay? BETH DIES."

3. On discussing the scariness of a "kid-friendly" "classic" that elmimates major plot points, I told YG about the kid friendly versions of books I read when I was a kid. He asked what ones, and I mentioned The Prince and The Pauper, The Man in The Iron Mask, and The Count of Monte Crisco. "Monte Crisco?" he asked. And then we laughed and laughed. "Yeah," I said, "It's about this guy. He really likes fried sandwiches. With jam."

Topics for Discussion before Sex

YG: Remember that episode of South Park with Michael Jackson and Blanket?
Me: I can't believe he named his kid that. That kid's gonna be pissed when he grows up. 'Wait, you're Prince, and you're Paris, and I'm....Blanket?"
YG: Yeah, he's going to want to change his name. To Tito.
Me: Or Jermaine.
YG: I saw Jermaine Jackson in concert once.
Me: Seriously? Jermaine Jackson.
YG: Uh huh.
Me: Ha. Can I blog about that?
YG: Yeah, but you have to make sure that people know I didn't just go see Jermaine Jackson. He was the opening act for Cameo.
Me: Oh, don't worry. I will make CERTAIN that everyone knows you really went to see Cameo.
YG: Word up.

Cue the porny bass.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Recap: Wedding, Honeymoon and Yeah, Some Other Shit

So this is basically going to be a cut and paste from a bunch of stuff I wrote in my journal. I had grand plans of writing a brilliant piece about how wonderful everything was, and what it all means and the meaning of life and all that shit, but I don't work for Hallmark. And I've been busy. Note: this is why I am having trouble being a "working writer." Other note: it's because I'm lazy. Other other note: I must be having a good day because I refrained from adding, "and not that talented." Thank you, therapy.


My last day in the office was the Thursday before the wedding, which also coincided with Take Your Kids To Work Day. I brought the MG to the office and let her see the magic shows, face painting and petting zoo that we totally have every single day in Corporate America. The folks at work had a sup rise shower for me which I totally didn't expect. It was really nice and sweet and like all showers, totally awkward because I don't know how to say "thank you" without sounding cheesy or insincere. I later thought about how I didn't know ANYONE when I first moved up to Massachusetts and how I've made really good friends at work and it was really nice of them to celebrate and how I should tell them that. But I didn't.

RS graciously took the MG for a play date that evening so that YG and I could pack and finish everything we needed to do. We did a lot of packing and celebrating (8 days off from work! Woo hoo!) and internal freaking out on my part (OMG -- tonight! Tonight is the night he realizes what a freak I am and calls this all off! Quick! Act normal).

On Friday, YG went bike riding and I took the MG into Boston for manicures and pedicures and had any and all hair removed from my body. This is important because I decided that later that day would be the best time to try out my new "no rub" running shorts. No rub? Mucho chub rub. And on already red, raw waxed chubby thighs? Not good. I spent the last mile of my run alternately yanking the shorts out of my crotch and pouring cold water on my thighs. Wicked hawt. I was whimpering (for reals) and limping around the corner when I saw that my parents and grandparents had already arrived to pick up the enormous boxes of flowers that had been delivered that morning. And then we were off! There is absolutely nothing relaxing about my family. Nothing. I was happy to see them, but their arrival signaled that the frenzy was officially beginning.

I took a shower, iced my sexy thighs, free based some Advil and then we dragged all the flower boxes across town to The Marlowe set up, and to partake in the hotel's free happy hour. I spent about 3 seconds with my folks listening to them argue about the best way to unpack boxes that all come packed with a sheet that says "Best Way to Unpack This Flower Box" and went downstairs for my wine. YG's friend, MCubed, joined us and got to witness the frenzy and VOLUME that is Mcmani. And there was more arguing about the best way to get to the Back Bay train station when the hotel had already laid out, "here is the best way to get to the Back Bay station" and then more wine and then more arguing. You get the picture.

The MG and I went home and she played on the computer and I watched Grey's Anatomy and then we took the bus and met everyone for dinner at Henrietta's Table . My aunt, uncle, mom, dad, nana, brother, sister, brother's SO, and cousins were there, along with some family friends. I had the polenta. It was awesome. I had Seven Deadly Zins. It was also awesome. We had a Kids Table and an Adults Table. I ended up at the Adults Table. I blame this on YG's advanced age. We had a good time and then retired for the evening.

Wedding Proper

For whatever reason, I felt the need to catalog the entire day in my journal, right down to what we ate. BORING. But I guess I wanted to remember all the details of my SPECIAL DAAAAY.

We all woke early and hung out at home, eating breakfast as usual. The MG and I went to get our hair done at Carriage House while YG went to Diesel for coffee and to read and write in his journal. I'm sure his journal is filled with all sorts of deep thoughts and not all "and the oatmeal was good." It took almost two hours to do my hair, pincurled, fluffed, and then tiara-ed. The MG got a blow out and a cute updo and then sat reading US Weekly and all the kinds of women's magazines that will give her hang ups later on. I am starting my positive parenting early.

We went home and had some cardboard (read: whole wheat) pasta for lunch, and I sexed up my special day by paying bills and playing with the cats. The thing I remember most about that day was how SLOW the early part was moving -- it seemed liked the weeks and months before had flown by and then that morning, time was just stalled. I wasn't feeling nervous, just sort of out of my body and like I should be doing something to recognize "the moment." I suppose procrastinators would be using that time to pack, but we were essentially ready.

YG bought us presents -- a ring for the MG (one of his rings that his dad had given him) and new journal for the house for us. When we were long-distance, we used to send snail mail letters and cards all the time. That evolved into a house journal where we write things to each other whenever the mood strikes. The new one is Japanese-inspired and was wrapped in paper with the Eiffel Tower on it. I'm pretty lucky.

The Marlowe called around 1 to tell us that our room was ready, so we trekked across town again with all of our stuff and to get our room. As we were pulling up, we noticed two people lounging outside in the sun on the chaises -- that would be my mom and nana. We ended up with one of the Marlowe's fancier suites. Check this out:

I went downstairs to help my mom get the centerpieces prepared and help everyone "manage." Our event manager told me, "your mother seems to have a very ....artistic temperment" which was a nice way of putting it. Heh. We ate some potato chips and I had the first caffeine I had consumed in over a month (oh Diet Coke -- how I've missed you!). Then hair, make up, and meeting the photographer.

We took a bunch of inside and outdoor shots. It was a gorgeous day and scads of walkers and runners congratulated us as they passed by on the running path. We ran into a bunch of our guests on the way back in and then met with Dan, our minister, to calm down and focus before the ceremony.

I went back to my room to get my flowers and reapply lipstick and put on different underwear (note to future brides: underwear is important. Don't wait until the day of the wedding to find out the only beige underwear you have is some big ass granny pair and the smallest thong ever that you probably bought circa 1996). YG went down to meet Dan, and the MG and I waited for my dad who was already crying when he got to the door. Thank you Jesus for waterproof mascara. We went downstairs and milled about a bit waiting for my aunt is who is ALWAYS late, and my dad and my brother tried to help my cousin put on his tie. I was moderately sweaty. Then the music started.

Birds and Ships was first because it's our song in a way. And then the MG's entrance. And then me. It's kind of blurry from there. The music was perfect, and Dan was awesome as usual. Our siblings did great with the readings. And then we were married. Holy shit!

We did the whole receiving line. Tyra-Fierce photo courtesy of SKB:

Lots of people told me I looked pretty, which was all "aw shucks" and awesome since I had been worried about the dress for weeks. It didn't fit before I went to San Francisco so I ran like a maniac for a month to ensure that my jugs would be probably encased. Plus, I felt very pretty and happy and glowy too. And YG looked fantastic. But he always does. He's a cute one.

The cocktail hour was fun, although the socializing part seriously cut into the "let me stuff my face" portion of the evening. I had a few gin and tonics, and will be forever grateful to NN for bringing me the plate of Italian meats because mmmmm...salted pork. I'm glad I talked to everyone during cocktail hour because I didn't do much beyond eating and dancing after that. The toasts were great. My mom was my mom. YG's dad was his dad. And the MG surprised us all with the best, and most unexpected toast, of the night about how happy she was that we were together and that I was going to be her stepmom. Awesome.

Other things that were awesome:
* The cake.

* The food.
* The super expensive champagne for YG and I.
* All of friends from all aspects of our life in one place.
* All the dancing.
* And more dancing.
* And MORE dancing.
* Both sets of siblings meeting each other.
* My sister's karaoke version of "Pour Some Sugar on Me"
* The fact that my parents like to dance to "Sexy Back"
* Journey? Seriously, WTF? Awesome.
* Phil's lap dances, and the Syracuse crew back together again.
* SKB's impromptu operatics. Or drunk SKB in general.
* All of my "Internet friends" -- AG coming from Ireland, and RK and APL respectively trekking up.
* All our fun work friends.
* Did I mention the dancing?

It went by quickly, but not too quickly. Afterwards we went to the bar in the hotel and hung out for a while before retiring upstairs, exhausted. We made fun of the fur-lined bedspread and the leopard-print robes. I promised YG that I would not post pictures of him doing model-y poses in said robe on said bedspread, but I didn't promise that I wouldn't write about it. Hilarity ensued!

The next day, my aunt hosted a breakfast in the hotel and we had some more "hang out" time with our out-of-town guests. It's sad that it takes a "life event" to get everyone together, but I'm grateful for the time that we had with everyone. We still don't have pictures from the photographer, but BB and Phil took a bunch of pictures so I'll just link to them for now.


If you're still with me, I'm amazed. That's some long-ass details. Now I'm just going to copy and paste from my journal. Again, I did a lot of cataloging. I don't normally do that -- I usually just jot down notes about things that I'd like to write about later and then never do. But I wanted to remember this trip.

May 1,2008: 10:25 a.m. Balcony on Le Meridien in Nice, overlooking The Promonade de Anglais and the sea which always is an indescribable aqua blue color even when it's gray outside. The "beach" is gray and rocky, and beach chairs and blue and white umbrellas line up along it. There are lots of bikers, runners and walkers along the promenade and enormous palm trees. It is sunny today, in the high 60s, and you can walk around in a light sweater and jeans. Yesterday, it poured. On Tuesday, we laid on the beach on yellow and white striped towels and dipped our feet in the sea. Then we swam in the pool on the hotel's rooftop and read and drank coffee and win. We met two waiters named Julien which is maybe a sign that I may someday have a baby boy as that's my favorite boy name. We watched some sort of student protest -- hundreds marching down the promenade -- from our balcony. I ate crepes with nutella. We ate Italian food at Taverna Massena twice -- pasta arrabiata and aubergine pizza. Someone is on the promenade with a megaphone right now. Everyone -- with the exception of one guy at the airport -- knows that we are Americans right away. We found a small bistro yesterday in old town and had tapanade and ratatouille, and walked up to the Russian Cathedral. We went to Monte Carlo and lost money on the slot machines and ate dinner at the Cafe du Pari -- steak and saffron risotto. Every morning, we ate french bread and jam that you bought at a nearby grocery door. We bought champagne at a wine shop and drank it in our room. We ate pizza at Queenie and read. We people watched. And now we are off to Paris. It still feels a bit unreal to be in France. With my HUSBAND. Hold shit. We are married now. I do feel very, very lucky and am grateful for the chance to make a marriage work.

That was Nice. Then we were off to Paris.

"May 4, 2008: 9 p.m. Sitting on Avenue es Champs Elysees in Paris on our last night here, watching the people -- mostly tourists-- stroll by. We arrived on Thursday to rain and checked into our hotel -- Hotel de Sers of the 25 Euro cocktails. We strolled up to the Champs, drank wine in a sidewalk cafe with pommes frites and walked to the Arc de Triumph. We decided not to walk up and to just people watch. It was freezing and I worried about not having warm enough clothes. We at dinner at a Chines restaurant, of all places, and drank more wine. Some French douchebag and his tacky titted girlfriend complained about everything from the food to the wine to the service. All were fine. On Friday, we slept until 10:30 and took the metro to Monmarte which was way more crowded and touristy than I remembered. I pointed out the carousel we recognized from Amelie and we climbed the stairs. We visited the church. We did not punch douchey tourists in the groin when they took pictures of people praying even though it says explicitly in 5 languages, "no photos." We had crepes and wine for lunch and talked with the multilingual shop owner of a tourist knick-knack joint. I bought postcards. You bought MG some chocolate. We tired of the crowds and walked down the stairs and Saw an old lady in her window people watching us. We walked to Pigalle and found lots of sex shops. Like old Times Square with better architecture. We walked some more and ended up at Galleries Lafayette where I fought the crowds to try on designer shoes, buying none. You wisely read your book and had cappuccino at the tea room. We went out on the roof, took pictures and then walked to the Opera House and Madeline(spelling) and toward Concorde. We stopped at Maxim's for wine, but the service sucked, so we left. Then we walked down the Champs back to our hotel where Guillerme, the concierge, recommended the best (and most expensive) restaurant I've even eaten at, La Table du Lancaster in the Lancaster Hotel. The host was a super friend Italian guy and the sommelier was wonderful. The food was beyond describable. It was a true food experience, with wine pairings and a special honeymoon treat of raspberry sorbet encased in white chocolate on a stick. Every day has been perfect weather, sunny and in the mid 70s and the sun never goes down here -- it's 9:30 and the street lights aren't one yet."

Then from the plane:

"May 5, 2008: En route from Paris to Boston, writing with my souvenir pen. I just finished "The History of Love," the first book I marked with my new hyphenated last name. It included a character named Uncle Julian. The Julians continue to track me. On Saturday, we woke up late again and went to a cheap place on the Champs for croissants and coffee -- with milk! (Horray!) We watched the people go by and took the metro from Charles de Gaulle to the catacombs in Montaparnasse. It's an above ground line and we passed the Eiffel Tower at Bir-Hakeim. The line for the catacombs was 90 minutes long and packed with other tourists, so we decided not to give up prime 70-degree weather. The metro sign there has the old school syle -- we took pictures. We took it back and hung near the Eiffel Tower taking pictures and marveling. I don't care if it's cheesy and touristy -- it's beautiful. We bought 2 day passes for Les Cars Rouges and rode to Notre Dame. It was also crowded, but there was a street band performing one of our songs from church, "Down by the River." We bought MG some trinkets at a tourist shop run by Brazilian women in lots of rhinestones, and you had to buy a baseball cap that said "Paris" because your head was getting a sunburn. I will still make fun of you for that. USA! USA! We stopped in the park behind the church to use the bathroom and I chatted with an American woman married to a Frenchman before we walked to Ile de St. Louis for lunch. We both had wine and salads and that famous French ice cream that I can't remember how to spell now (B somethign) -- me: pink grapefruit, apricot; you: milk chocolate, caramel salt butter -- that had been recommended by our cab driver in Nice. We met a nice, pretty couple who began talking to us when they saw us struggling to understand the ice cream flavors in French. The woman said her English was poor, but it wasn't. She had to move her car because it was about to be ticketed. We saw a girl on roller blades wipe out but manage to save her ice cream and lots of Velib bikes. We walked around the island to the South Point and over to the Left Bank and stopped on the Seinve to read and take pictures. We walked more through the small stalls and started to get irritated by the European idea of personal space. It was here that you coined "petit moose" for that grumpiness that comes when you are hot and being jostled by too many strangers. We caught the Big Red Bus again. A young brother and sister grabbed leaves from the trees and threw them at the passerbys. We folled the route and got off at the Champs. I don't remember if this was the day we bought the champagne and water at a tiny shop or not. We went back to the hotel, changed, read some more. You wore your fancy outfit that you bought at Drinkwater's. We had a glass of champagne at the cafe down the road and watched very pretty people going to the place we dubbed "the model hotel" with very skinny people and Bentleys, Maseratis, and Ferraris and one white gorgeous Lamborghini. You also saw a Maybar (Mayfair? May something or other?) and said it's one of the world's most expensive cars. We walked up to the Arc and climbed the stairs to the top. It was night and breathtaking. The Tower glittered. The Champs was packed with cars. Our camera lost battery power, but it didn't matter. It was warm. We went back down and ate a very late dinner at tiny pizza place. We then waited on line for 20 minutes for mediocre Haagen Daaz ice cream. I elbowed a dude who tried to cut me in line. We both petit moosed about the croweds. We found a bench finally and watched some more. It was Saturday night so there was lots of glitter and boobs, or melones grandes. We went back to the hotel and went to bed. We slept again until 10 and decided to just find a neighborhood to hang out in. We took the Metro to St. Paul in the Marais and walked through Ile de St. Louis again and to the Left Bank. We strolled along Rue St. Germain which was quiet on a Sunday morning and found a cafe in the shade. We FINALLY met a surly French waiter, and I had a cheeseburger like the obnoxious American I am and you had steak. We read. We walked to the Sorbonne and the Luxembourg Gardens and read under the leaves for an hour. We walked to San Germain and the Place Sartre -- Beauvoir and had overpriced Evian and Coca Cola "Light" at Les Deux Magots. I did not feel literary. Another band played and I saw a man open the windows in the church. We walked some more, caught the Red Bus again and rode around, looking at our last views of Paris during the day. We went back to the hotel and hung out before heading back to the neighborhood cafe for rose champagne and bread and cheese. The back to Champs where we sat on a bench and called our parents and wrote in our journals. We had dinner at a place where they made the weaiters wear uniforms of jeans, blue and white striped shirts and sailor caps. I had vegetable soup. You had chicken. There was a piece of glass in your apple tart so they didn't charge us. I thoroughly enjoyed my last nutella crepe. We took one last stroll and went back to the hotel to pack. You called the MG, as you did every day. This morning we were sad to leave Paris. We went back to the Champs and had cappaccino and apricot croissants for breakfast and watched everyone bustling to work on a Monday morning. With a few exceptions, nobody looked as miserable as they do in the US on a weekday morning. We walked back to the Arc one last time, much quieter than the weekedn, and found the 1944 Auxiliary Forces plaque. You told me this was your favorite monument. We went back to the hotel and took some pictures by the Velib bikes. After check out, our cab was both late and nuts -- we got pulled over for a speeding ticket on the way to the airport. We spent the last of our euro on duty-free postcards, biscuits and wine. We watched some Eurohozzles struggle with their many overstuffed suitcases. We had champagne and wine on the plane and toated the way the sommelier Lancaster did -- "happy life." We both cried a little. You watched a movie. I finished a book. We're married now and off to start the next adventure. Happy life indeed."

Pictures here.

What's Next
It's summertime, dudes. That's freakin' awesome. Over a week back from vacation and I'm still feeling pretty relaxed (okay, even keeled). Of course, that could be the two martinis talking.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

"Married?" "Yes, mawwied"

Here it is. Full story later.

I Know I Owe a Wedding Update, But This is Cool

I ran two 5Ks last year. The first one I finished 38:52 and the second 35:16. I ran one this morning, and I finished in 33:51. That's another minute off my time, and I felt AWESOME.

I also ran with a belly full of wine and Korean food so the possibilities for future races, sans food baby, are endless!