Sunday, February 28, 2010

a pee in your pants kind of love

Emily from Emphasis Added! posted this on her blog...cutest thing ever!

This may just be the cutest thing I've ever seen. Apparently, this couple has been married for 62 years (he is going to be 90 years old this year) and they are still getting into trouble and having fun with one another. They walked into the Mayo Clinic for a checkup, spotted this piano, and got down to business.

I used to worry about love. I didn't think it really existed. I didn't trust it. And, I lied and said things like, "I don't believe in true love." Or, "I don't really want to get married." The truth is, I desperately want to believe in love. I want to trust love. And, I want to get married. You see, what I was doing by saying those false statements was masking my fear. I'm scared of love in a way. I don't trust it because I know that love can be amazing and powerful, but it can also be hard and painful. Also, as a single woman I feel this pressure to be independent and reject a pining for love. I don't want to be "one of those girls." Whoever they are. Those girls who talk about falling in love and getting married and plan their wedding before a groom even enters their life. I just don't want to be "her." However, I am slowly learning and accepting that it is okay to be both independent and want love. It is okay to say out loud that I want to be loved, that I want to be married, and that it scares me at the same time. It just isn't okay to push it away anymore just because it terrifies me.

I want to be part of that couple that is married for 60+ years getting into trouble and making a scene because of we love being silly together. I want people to think and write about how they want a love like the one I share with my husband. I want to never stop talking and having fun. I want to stay young as I grow older with my partner. I want to play the piano at the Mayo clinic and pee my pants because I am laughing while I do it. (Come on, you know she was peeing a happens.) I want that. I want what they have. Love.

I just need to learn to play the piano first.

i thought i was over it

Apparently this cold I've been fighting all week wants to stay around a little longer. It was not nice for it to take a one day vacation, as it caused me to celebrate no longer being sick. Now, I sort of feel like I was run over by a truck and I can't sleep.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

don't tell...

..but I am really procrastinating finishing this writing project I am working on.

if music was renee zellwegger, i'd be jerry maguire because it had me at hello

I've written before about my love of music and I apologize, but you are going to have to read about it again. There is something about it. It makes my blood flow in a different direction, my heart skip a beat, and my soul come alive. I feel a good song stirring in my bones and some times I could just jump out of my skin...I am so in love with a sound.

I have this dream of walking the sidewalk with ear buds in, music playing, and just breaking out into some intuitive dance. Freeing my body of the sound or becoming one with it. Totally trippy, I get this. But, it takes over. I heart it.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Wherein the pigeon gets his 15 minutes...

Hi, my name is Emily and I love pigeons.

I know pigeons are not popular things to like. People like to call them all kinds of nasty names, but I call them beautiful. There is something about them that I am just drawn to. Some of them have the most beautiful coloring with iridescent greens, blues, and purples. And, they just have this "I don't give a shit what you think" kind of attitude. They are weird and awkward and under appreciated. And that kids, that is a recipe for making something I love.

I apparently have a style. Let's just get it out of the way right off the bat that my style isn't "good" or anything. Style doesn't mean you are walking a runway. It just means you have things that inherently make sense for you to wear or surround yourself with. There is some common thread. In my case that thread may be weird and tacky, but I am okay with that.

In actuality, I can't describe my style. I wouldn't know how to tell you what really makes something "me." My friends on the other hand, they have my style down pat. They are always saying, "of course you do" in response to me saying, "I love this!" When I buy something, I often hear, "that is very Emily." I'm not sure what this really means, but I kind of love it. My friend (and sister-in-law) says that she has to make herself stop shopping for me when the holidays roll around because she is most in tune with what would make a good "Emily" present.

Anyway, this was all to say that I love pigeons and it seems to me that I am not alone. Pigeons are taking over the internet recently. Everywhere I look, there they are.

Love this! (via Origami Bijou)

Best! Thing! Ever! (via Chinnychinchin) I want it! I want it!

Now, let's be real folks. How can you not love the pigeon when you see how responsibly he rides on public transportation?

could i possibly want these any more?

answer, "No."

Elizabeth Soule Photography)

wisconsin: a far away and exotic land

I had an amazing weekend filled with fun, friends, and indoor swimming. To celebrate the birth of two friends and escape the winter reality of Chicago (their wish not mine), a handful of us headed to what can only be described as an African sister city...that's right...I'm talking about Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin. Yep, we went on a safari to the exotic Kalahari Resort where it is 84 degrees every day of the year. The Midwest's largest indoor waterpark (don't fact check please) was our playground. Lazy river. Yes please. Hot tubs and water slides. Check and check. It was an absolute blast. Oh, and let's not leave out our excursion to the Dells' one and only gay bar to experience some of Wisconsin's finest drag queens. Did they have a lady wearing a dress made out of a curtain (rings attached)? Yes, yes they did. Did they have a queen who was pushing 70? Sure did. Oh, good times kids. Good times.

Oh, one more thing. We spent much of the three hour car ride there and back with our eyes peeled for the elusive Wisconsin Werewolf that my friend assured us existed.

Only problem with the weekend...somehow the massive amounts of chlorine they pump into the air in the waterpark didn't kill whatever was growing in my throat. I am now sick as a dog and have been laid up in the bed for two days. Not happy. The gallons of tea I have been consuming have not been doing anything but keeping me awake and running to the potty. Boo hiss.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

saving the best of last is for assholes

I've never really been athletic. I don't like to run. Hell, I barely like to walk. And for the record, this didn't start as an adult. I didn't like running around and shit like all other little kids. So, naturally, I wasn't a big team sports sort of girl growing up. There was one exception though, T-Ball.

The town I grew up in in New Jersey was fairly small. My brother and I pretty much knew everyone on our t-ball team and my dad, who was one of the coaches, knew all the other coaches.

While I was on the team, I wasn't always really into the game. I'd get bored and walk off the benches to go swing on the swing sets that were next to the field or I would wonder off with a friend. I just wasn't too into it. Add that to the fact that I was the last to bat every time. My dad would lovingly tell me that they were saving the best for last and I had to wait my turn. At four maybe five years old, I didn't like this answer but I accepted it. I was, in fact, the best.

The coaches (and sometimes the parents in the stands) would call me back to the field when it was time for me to bat. This is where things got interesting. The ringer of Bohm's Sod Farm T-Ball team would step on to the plate. Watch out mother fuckers. I meant business. It is true that my business meant missing the tee every now and then. I dare you to try to hit a stationary ball perched on a tee some time. It isn't as easy as it sounds. Back off.

When I did make contact with the ball, it was magic. Suddenly it was clear why they were saving me for last. One for the win. Home run should have been my middle name. I'd hit the ball and take off running. The kids on the opposing team would yell, naturally, as I ran around the bases. I couldn't bother with them. It was my moment. A fuckin' t-ball legend. I'd make it to home and return to clapping and my dad picking me up telling me what a good job I did. Saving the best for last, that's for damn sure.

The concept of saving the best for last was something I really took with me long after my t-ball days were over. It really made sense to me. It seemed like a good motto to live by.

However, it wasn't.

Yes, I didn't learn this until years after my t-ball hay-days. My jersey number, 0....yeah I forgot to mention that one...well, it wasn't just luck of the draw. And saving the best for last? Well, turns out I wasn't really on the team. They were just letting me hit once everyone else did. Nothing I did really mattered. All those "home runs?" Fake. Oh, and the cheering and yelling. It's true that there was cheering from the parents in the stands who knew the real deal, but the yelling from the opposing team's players...wasn't in support. I ignored their "but she didn't even touch the base" or "let me tag her coach" as I ran by them. I didn't pay attention to the coaches holding the other players back to keep them from tagging me with the ball. I was in my own world. High off of the saving the best for last glory of it all.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

there's something about mary...

I can be a total anomaly at times. My room is often very messy and unorganized, but when I am desk is immaculate. I am not a fuss and frills sort of girl, but I'd get a manicure every week if I had the money (and this used to be my habit). I prefer when people follow the rules, but I make few for myself. I don't have a daily routine. Sometimes I wash my hair before soaping up and sometimes it is the last thing I do in the shower. There are a great number of things in my life that are unstructured, but if you followed me around for a full day, upon close examination,you'd find that hidden amongst the chaos I create in my life I'm just like everyone else. I'm a creature of habit. True, my morning is anything but routine. I rarely put things back in the place I found them. And, I don't ever get up at the same time in the morning. However, I always walk on the same side of the sidewalk to the train and cross at the exact same place. My grocery list could practically be carved in stone. I always always take the right contact out before the left. And, when I worked, I always took the same routes when traveling to and from work (one for the morning and another after work). Usually I stood on the same spot on the platform and rode the same car each morning and evening. I'd see the same people everyday during my commute- proof that more people fall into the comfort of a routine than would like to admit. The only thing that would change were our outfits.

These people that I saw became part of my environment...I'd expect to see them. When one of the supporting characters in the commuter show was missing, I'd notice and wonder where they went and if they were okay. I would want to know their stories. And sometimes I'd make their stories up in my head. I never knew them though. None of us broke that unspoken code of silence you take when we stepped onto the train. We saw each other every day, but never talked.

It was weird, when I first stopped working, I felt like I had been watching a good television show only to find out that it had been cancelled mid season. Just like that. The world stopped and I would never know what happened to my fellow commuters. Luckily for me, they weren't the only people that were part of my environment. In reality, the cast of the commuter show paled in comparison to Mary.

(actual picture of "Mary")

Mary may not be her real name, but to me it very much is. I don't know where Mary lives. For months it seemed as though she lived on the side walk outside of Walgreens. It was her habit and she wasn't quitting Walgreens any time soon. She would stand there morning and night having deep conversations...with herself. She'd make a good point and she would nod her head in agreement. She would get carried away and she would talk with her hands. Sometimes she took walks. Once, while sitting at the tables outside of Argo tea she spoke to me and my friend. She ran her hands across the smooth metal table next to us and them abruptly looked up and said, "I'm just looking." That was the day she became Mary. We needed a name for her. From that day forward she took on a whole new life in my eyes. I was acutely aware of her and her comings and goings from the Walgreens. Yes, I am aware that she is most likely a very ill woman. That is perhaps what drew me to her even more. I am a social worker at heart and I feel connected to others very easily. I even defended her when a server at a restaurant in the neighborhood said that she was "fake" and that it was "all an act." She apparently frequented the restaurant often and would have others buy her food. (If you are wondering how I got to talking to a server about Mary, it is the same way that I usually step out of a cab knowing the drivers life long he has been married, how many children he has, what he did as a career before driving a cab, etc.)

Mary was no fake. Mary may not be her real name, but everything was totally genuine. From her two toned hair right down to her paint splattered sneakers. No one talks to themselves in public for shits and giggles. No one stands outside day and night for the fun of it. Plus, she never asked me for money. Not once. She was sick. It was obvious. And, I wanted to know all about her.

I feel drawn to people some times. Just like Mary, there was a man who stood in the underground walkway between the blue and the red lines at the Jackson station. I passed him almost every day on my way home from work. He held a cup, a cane, and mumbled to himself. Some days he looked very bad. Others, he looked nicer with his hair freshly braided. Some days he was gone and I worried. Some days I gave him money. Some days I didn't. Every day I wanted to say hello and ask his name. Never did this happen.

Early on in the fall Mary just wasn't there any more at her usual post outside of the Walgreens. I thought perhaps she went for a walk and was hanging out somewhere else for a day or two. Days turned into weeks and weeks turned into months. It's true, my friends and I joked that she went to stay in her lush house in the north suburbs for the winter and would return when the weather grew nicer. Yet, beneath the joking, I was actually worried. I was sad that I allowed someone to be so present in my life, in terms of sharing physical space, yet never took the opportunity to move into a place of familiarity. Why had I never said hello? Why was I so set in the routine of seeing her, yet so comfortable with not really acknowledging her? I was disappointed in myself.

I was sitting in my apartment this evening and had a strange sudden craving for a cookie. Without really even thinking I sat up, put on shoes, and walked to Walgreens. I didn't even have to cross the street before I noticed her. She was back. Beneath a HUGE over coat, a hood, and sunglasses (despite the fact that it wasn't even a little light outside) I knew it was her. She was in the same spot she always was before. It was as if she had never left. It really made my day.

The Mary Show was apparently signed on for another season. And, I couldn't be happier.

I am left with a few thoughts though: How do I step outside of my routine and habits? How do I say hello first? And, how many other people do I miss by allowing them to blend into the background of my life?

What are your thoughts? Do you have a Mary?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

mr. president

I may be a day late on this one, but let's all pretend that I was wildly celebrating President's Day and had no time to sit down and blog.

I'm also going to pretend that a grown up Mary Kate and Ashley celebrated by getting together with Bill to do their annual remake of this hugely popular song.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

i might need to change professions

I can't sleep. Surprise!

Yep, I am trying to look on the bright side. As a result of me not sleeping, I have two really weird things to tell you about. The first, well, just see for yourself:

Please make sure you look at the picture closely. No, I didn't edit this. Yes, apparently, "A DOOZY" is a meteorological term. Who knew?

The second thing you ask? Well, as I lay in my bed trying to sleep I began to hear this annoying clicking sort of noise. It was coming from my kitchen, but I couldn't figure out what it was. It was a clicky rattley noise. I sat up and was about to go look when all of the sudden my apartment jolts. The jolt is what I would describe as somewhat violent. No, not whole apartment. My heart immediately began to race and I went into the kitchen. The clicking noise was coming from a mug that was sitting on top of this tin on my counter. It was rocking back and forth. Now, I will admit that I have a tendency to over react and jump to conclusions about things like this. My imagination just tends to run a little wild. No joking aside though. We just had a FUCKING EARTHQUAKE! Seriously! And, while it may have been a touch crazy, I headed over to the U.S. Geological Survey website (I had to google it first to find out where I should go...I don't have it as a favorite or anything crazy like that) turns out...there was an earthquake! Don't believe me? Here you go...a magnitude 4.3 earthquake. Or you can read this about the earthquake. Totally crazy. Although my heart was still beating out of my chest, I felt a little proud that I felt it and knew exactly what it was. Basically, I'm a seismic genius.

UPDATE: I just got a CNN breaking news alert text on my phone about the earthquake. Too late CNN, tell me something I didn't already know!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

square state

So, my bestest bestest friend is in town. We are two wild girls let me tell you. We are sitting in my bed drinking coffee and looking at my google analytics for this blog. I went to the map overlay from the day I started writing until today. Let me tell you I was a little too excited. Cambodia? Thank you for spending 20 minutes here! Sri Lanka? Slovenia? Wow. But, let's talk about you America...

I was looking at the US map and I have to say that I was excited- 45 states. But, why do you not like me: Maine, North Dakota, South Dakota, New Mexico, and square state that is not Colorado? That's right, I said other square state. My friend laughed, but then said she didn't know what state it was. There we sat for a good three minutes trying to figure it out. We are very intelligent I'd like to say, but geography apparently is not our forte.

We eventually figured it out. So, I'm looking at you Wyoming. Start reading. Please.

Thank you.

(P.S. As I read this to her before hitting publish she said, "Wait, is Colorado square?" I hesitated, looked at the map and said, "Yes, of course it is.")

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Lucky McLuckerson

I feel like Charlie...I got the golden ticket...except my golden ticket was in the form of a call from an unknown number. Who knows what made me answer the phone because I never answer unknown numbers, but you bet your sweet ass I'm glad I did.

That's right, I won 10 free burritos from Chipotle! Happiest. Girl. Ever.

P.S. I am accepting bribes for an invite to the burrito extravaganza that will be happening very shortly at my local Chipotle.