Monday, March 17, 2014

Evidence of Life.

I haven't blogged lately and the reason might surprise you. Or not. Since up until recently, I've been a pretty open book when it comes to my life.

I've had multiple existential crises.



I talk about my hair, a lot. Like way too much.


I talk about things I find in my clothes. 

A | B

And of course, Mondo.


But I don't really talk about being really happy. I don't write posts about the great things happening in my life. Sure I do fun stuff and take vacations. But I don't write about things that are going great until they are done and things are not so great. Then I write funny things to make myself feel better about not feeling so great. 

But right now, things are actually great. 

And a part of that is because I'm out enjoying life and doing things. I'm cultivating healthy relationships. I'm laughing a lot. I'm eating a lot of brunch. I'm having a good time at my job. I'm working out and running. I'm trying to keep my shit together. 

So don't take my absence as a bad thing. You should be really, really, really happy for me. 

Friday, January 3, 2014

Amends for Poor Spelling

I was sort of feeling bad about all the terrible grammar mistakes I made in my last post. I swear I read what I write before I post, but commas and extra words are like the cobwebs and dust in your own home, after a bit you don't event see it.

I stopped feeling bad about the mistakes at about 2 a.m. that night when after a rousing Candy Crush marathon (remember how I said I deleted it, well that didn't last long) I decided to bore myself to sleep by reading the news.

Which is when I saw this.


If ABC News can misspell "revealed" in a headline, then I can misspell whatever I want.

And now to change subjects abruptly.

Tonight a strange man came to the door. Luckily our dogs are assholes so there was no reason to open the door too far, but he wanted me to call him a cab. Apparently he was being hassled by someone down the street. So I called a cab. But of course it took forever to get the dispatch on the line.

And then of course the man kept wanting to ask if I'd called, talking to me through the door. I woke AM up and she came into the living room and yelled at him through the door, asking if he wanted a cab or the police.

Which I think is when she scared him into putting some money in our mailbox for our troubles.

Because he lingered for a very long time and because we live in the hood, we also opted to call non-emergency to have someone stop by.

And of course the cop that showed up fifteen minutes later (faster than a 911 call, if you ask me) was super hot. How is it that the cops that come to your house when you are wearing long johns and pajamas are hot but the cops that come to the door when you're looking mighty fine are old and clearly on a donut diet?

Huh? How is that fair.

I told him what happened. I said "And he said he put money in the mailbox." Officer McHottie put on some rubber gloves and opened the mailbox. Two crumpled up dollars sat inside.

"I don't want it," I said.

"Neither do I," he responded. And closed the mailbox back up.

He left shortly thereafter, I'm sure to drive by the park where all of the shenanigans happen late at night.

I'm so happy we keep a bat by our front door. And that Mondo and Seeley are jerks.

I can't decide if I should leave the two bucks in the mailbox for the mail lady or take it and buy myself a PBR.

And I really do owe the mail lady some amends.


Sunday, December 22, 2013

Burritos are dead to me.

"Remember when we used to eat burritos every day?" asked my friend.

Yes. Yes, I do. And I miss them every day. But about 9 months ago I divorced burritos. I left the burrito lifestyle behind and broke free of the oppressive smothering hold burritos had on my life.

Have you ever ate a burrito so delicious that it was like a religious experience? Bit into the gooey, cheesy, warmth, breaking through its perfectly blanketed tortilla exterior?

I love burritos. Present tense. I love them so much.

Steak fajitas burrito from Chipotle, I love you.

Chorizo burrito from the cart pod on 50th and Division, I miss your face.

Thai burrito from that one nameless foodcart on Burnside, I want to take you in the alley and make you pregnant.

Last summer I started a new job and in my first week, a coworker asked me a very important question. "Burritos or pizza, Bry?"

I had to think about it very seriously. Of course, burritos. No question. But what did he want me to say? Did he want me to pick pizza? This was like one of those personality tests designed to tell the asker more about you then you were willing to reveal.

"Uh. Burritos, duh."

He nodded. "You're cool."

The problem with burritos lies not in the tastiness, but in the ingredients. Like any comfort food, it is chock full of fat and carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are like hugs that stab you in the back. They're like squatters that move in and live on your hips and in your belly and then they start hoarding. They start spreading their trash until your pants don't fit and you have zero energy.

Eating one burrito is almost the equivalent of all the calories you should eat in an entire day.

Why doesn't anyone invent the worlds smallest, most delicious, teeny tiny, appetizer burrito? The thing with burritos is that everyone is always trying to make them BIGGER and full of more STUFF. Like fries. Or double meat and cheese. Or tortilla's the size of the moon.

We used to go to Baja Fresh several times a week and eat the Dos Manos burritos. Do you know what dos manos means? It means two hands. Burritos for two hands. Burritos bigger than your head, one for each hand.

No one should eat anything ever that is bigger than your head. Or your fist, for that matter.

So even though burritos are my one true love, we are divorced. I left them behind to fend for themselves and I'm much happier for it.


Friday, December 6, 2013

The Thanksgiving Stranger

I've had many memorable Thanksgivings. There was the time we opened the backdoor to cool down the house and then when we sat down to dinner, during the prayer as our eyes were closed, the goat came in the house to see what all the fuss was about.

I remember one time my mom and her sister got in a terrible fight and I spent most of the night sitting in a dark bathroom with my mom.

Or the time my friend came to visit my freshman year of college and we ate taco salad and watched movies on a deserted college campus.

And of course I've had many a normal, non-eventful, typical low-rent Rockwellian Thanksgivings, too including one spent in Lake Havasu in a campground.

But by far, my favorite Thanksgiving was the first adult one I spent away from home, my junior year of college. Three holiday orphans, me from Montana, RO from Utah, and RF from Hawaii. By junior year, we'd learned that none of us could really afford to go home for the holidays, no matter how many credit cards we had.

RF, RO and I decided to cook the full shabang at RF's apartment. His roommate was off at his family's, something we were grateful for since this was shortly after RF accidently ran said roommate's swiss army knife through the garbage disposal. Something that was apparently unforgivable, even when an accident. And thus earning the moniker "The Angry Boy Scout.". It was shortly after this that RF secretly moved into an all girl's apartment on campus to escape the tension.

But that day we were all alone, just the three of us trying to cobble together a full dinner using the hodgepodge of pots and pans of us three, poor, college students.Our plan was to cook and hang out all day, maybe watch a movie or something.

I arrived in the early afternoon to an already overly warm apartment, RF gleefully basting the turkey with a stick of butter.

"This is going to be the best turkey ever," he said. I nodded in agreement because that's what best friends do even though they secretly believe that while everyone hopes their turkey is the best ever, it rarely is. Turkey is, well, turkey. And there is not much you can do to fuck it up save burning it to a crisp or not cooking it enough.

RO arrived shortly thereafter. She lived close by, a lucky single in a double apartment with a secret cat that I gave her for her birthday. In retrospect, years and years later, giving a college student in college housing a cat for her birthday is probably an example of the poorest judgment I've ever used.

We were in the midst of cooking when RO announced that while in the parking lot she ran into a girl who was here alone and was it okay to invite her to dinner?

We all agreed that seemed fine and RO went off to confirm the invite. What none of us were willing to admit is that we didn't have any idea what her name was. Sure she lived a few doors down from RF and in the same bank of apartments as the two of them. Sure we saw her at the Delta Psi Delta house at almost every party. But her name? That we didn't know.

While we were stirring and chopping and basting, I said to RF "What is her name again?" He lifted his shoulders and shook his head.

And then when our Thanksgiving guest arrived at the door to join us, it became obvious that we should know each other. No introductions were made. Linfield had about 1500 students when I attended but it was a small campus and had a very small town vibe, like we should all know each other. And of course we ran in tangential circles that overlapped at frat parties or in passing at the Catalyst.

Our guest sat with us for several hours, gossiping about some concert or football game on TV and other random Linfield and McMinnville things. The entire time, the three of us were tense with the guilt that we had no idea what her name was. Every time I went into the kitchen, RF and I had to smother our giggles as we tried to whisper names back and forth.

At one point, as dinner was nearing completion, RO came into the kitchen. "Do you remember her name?" she whispered. I shook my head no.

"I think it might be Sarah," RO said. I shook my head. I wasn't sure either but she didn't look like a Sarah. She seemed more exotic than a Sarah.

We whispered back and forth trying to furtively figure out just who was sitting in the living room.

Finally RO said "Hey Sarah, dinner's done." And then a few seconds later she responded "Okay!" And came into the kitchen.

We dished up our grub and headed to the living room. I wanted to talk more to "Sarah" because I felt like I could figure out her name if she would talk more about the people she hung out with whose names I did know. But no matter how much she talked, I just couldn't pull her name from the tip of my tongue.

And I had more important things on my mind. Like the slices of turkey that were melting in my mouth like pieces of sashimi.

"Oh my god RF! This turkey is fucking delicious. What did you do with it?"

"Not much. Just basted it."

"How often?"

"Like every half hour or so."

"It's so good."

"I used five sticks of butter."

"Holy shit."

This will forever be known as that Thanksgiving when we ate with a stranger and RF tried to give us a heart attack.

Dinner was done and followed shortly thereafter by pie. And a Britney Spears concert on DVD. Because that is was our RF's style.

The night went on and finally after five excruciatingly awkward hours, "Sarah" left.

As soon as she went home we all exhaled loudly.

"Her name was so not Sarah." I said. But we couldn't think of a suitable alternative.

"Where's your Lindex?" I asked RF.

The Lindex was a spiral bound directory of all the students and departments at Linfield. It also listed the hometown of every student.

And like every good Nancy-Drew-reading-Encyclopedia-Brown-loving girl, I knew something important about fake Sarah. I knew she was from Vermont Maine and she was a senior. Linfield was many things but it was not an American version of the United Nations. There were very few students from the east coast, let alone more than two from Vermont.

So as Britney shimmied and shook on the TV in the background, I went though the Lindex page by page until I found our mystery guest's name.

Her name was not Sarah. To this day, I can't for the life of me remember what it might be. I forgot. As terrible as this sounds, it doesn't really matter.

Aside from this day, I only have one other memory of her and that involves stumbling into her after too many beers at the Delta house, finding her and her friend knitting in one of the rooms while loud music made the walls shake and the sounds of partying college students could be heard from every nook and cranny.

My hope is that she has the opposite side of this story to tell her friends and family, about that one Thanksgiving she stayed on campus and ate dinner with three junior assholes who kept calling her Sarah.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Zen & the Art of Candy Crush Saga

I've recently taken up yoga. I'm saying it as such not to make you think I'm a yoga master, but to let you know that it is something that I'm paying actual money to learn and not just cribbing from the internet for free. Though time will tell if I could have saved a bunch of money or not.

The reason I started going to yoga is that I tend to internalize and compartmentalize my life in a way that neatly hides stress, but the stress is still lurking. I'm also what you could call a work-o-holic. Yoga is supposed to be relaxing. Also, I'm starting to get a little creeky in my old age. Release stress, become more bendy. Good goals.

My problem at yoga class is two fold. 1) while doing the poses, I tend to think about a thousand things other than my breathing and other than feeling the stretch. Or feeling "My roots going down into the earth" as the instructor asks us to do. 2) It takes a lot of concentration not to laugh when people are farting and snoring in class. Because I'm a toddler and I laugh at immature stuff.

The other day, as we were in corpse pose (how each class ends), I could hear some other women in the class snoring and I sort of smiled, even though I was supposed to be concentrating on relaxing my jaw and feeling my inner ears. And it dawned on me that I'm doing yoga wrong. I'm trying NOT to fall asleep but isn't sleep the ultimate indication of true relaxation?

But I'm so worried about the potential embarrassment of falling asleep and having to be woken up, that I concentrate very hard on staying alert.

I'm sure that with more practice, I'll eventually get there. But in the meantime, while laying on the mat, I'm thinking about stuff to do at work. Doing laundry. Recipes. Books I'm reading. Danny Castellano. Did I remember to feed the dogs? I should mow the lawn. Oh crap, I forgot to email so and so.

And then suddenly class is over and I forgot to be zen. I did the poses. I feel stretched. I'm mind is not relaxed.

My mind never stops moving. And when I force myself not to think about home or work, I think about really dumb stuff.

Like Candy Crush Saga.

As I was downwarding my dog and trying not to laugh as someone farted, I tried to clear my head. I tried to concentrate on my muscles. On my rib cage. On my spine. All of those interlocking bits of bone that zip up my back. Oh gosh. Its like Tetris. Oh gosh, Tetris is like...

...Candy Crush Saga. And then I was picturing a candy crush board in my head. I was shifting yellow lemon drops and cherry candies around. I was visualizing it so clearly that it was if I had my iPhone in my hand and were playing the game.

Except in my head, during yoga, I was really good at Candy Crush Saga. Which is not true about real life.

Can I just digress here for a moment and talk about how that game is just one big old slot machine masquerading as a game? They make it nearly impossible to finish a level without having to buy extra lives or extra bonuses. And when you run out of lives, they make you wait 5-20 minutes before you get more free lives. OR! or! or! you could buy some more lives! For just 99 cents. I have yet to cave and buy any lives, because that's dumb, and screw you Candy Crush Saga (also, you're sort of geniuses and probably bajillonares so good on you).

But hopefully my yoga hours will no longer be filled with imagining moving candies because I deleted that game off my cell phone.

This morning I found myself watching a You Tube video about how to beat level 23 and it was at the moment that I realized I had to stop cold turkey.

Which means that at yoga tomorrow night, I can think about farts.

Because that's what every 33 year old should be thinking about.