19 December 2008


i don't have to go back to work for 17 whole days!!!

this is a glorious, glorious feeling.

18 December 2008

a new perspective

the past few months i've felt myself slowly descending from adulthood into some weird state that i can't really describe. i used to cook on a regular basis. last week i ate brownies for dinner. i used to pack a normal lunch for myself everyday. at one point in november, my lunch bag contained microwave popcorn, a packet of instant oatmeal, and m&ms. i used to exercise. i haven't been to the gym since may. i used to go to bed at a normal hour. i haven't been to sleep before 2am in weeks. i used to keep my stuff in order. right now, you literally cannot see the floor of my bedroom. i used to be responsible. now i blow my work off all the time.

i was starting to feel like all the giant leaps into adulthood that i had made over the past two years were disappearing. i'm still making sure that my bills get paid on time and that the oil gets changed in the car, sure. but my whole attitude was a little off from what it has been. then, tonight, adiya shed some light on the situation,

"you're a student again. things always go downhill when you're a student."

and she's right. things changed when i started classes in june. and they changed in ways that haven't happened since i left grove city. i don't eat right, i don't sleep enough, and the thought of taking time out of my day to go running just makes me cringe. maybe now that i know the problem, i can slowly start to bring myself back into the world of responsible adulthood.

but i will always be nocturnal...

on the eighteenth day of christmas...

...i realized that christmas is in one week.

and i'm not done shopping.


15 December 2008


i survived my first semester of grad school!!!

[insert happy dance here]

study hall

you know it's going to be one of those days when you look up from your desk and have to make your sophomores put the filing cabinet back together...

...and to think, i've got friends with normal jobs.

13 December 2008

paper of doom

grad school is sucking away my will to live.

20 pages to go...

11 December 2008

first graders + sweater vests = adorable

tonight was the school christmas concert. i played piano interludes, which went way better than i thought it would. due to the age range involved (k-8th grade) the concert itself was a combination of cuteness and unintentional hilarity, with a side of way too long thrown in for good measure. for some reason, each of the six groups performed about 4 songs, plus nine solos. (i kept looking over at the poor 1st grade teacher, who seemed to be in shell-shock from trying to keep five 6 year old boys amused, quiet, and marginally still for an hour and a half.) it was pretty much your typical small school concert, complete with lots of christmas carols, first graders in sweater vests, parents with video cameras, reindeer antlers, a middle school concert band with a very subjective sense of timing and key signature, and a 6 year old who got so excited during the "stomping part" of the song that he missed the steps and fell off the stage.

my job may be time-consuming, but at least it's interesting...

09 December 2008

only me

i somehow managed to injure my shoulder while teaching U.S. history. not lifting anything. not carrying things. not even writing on the board. just sitting there teaching. at the beginning of class i was fine, by the end of class i could barely lift my arm above my shoulder.

my life is so strange.

on a happy note, i finished one of my grad classes today! all i have left is the monstrous paper and i'm done for the whole semester. that will be a lovely feeling. unfortunately, however, i realized this afternoon that interim grades are due tomorrow, and i haven't graded anything for three weeks. oh well. it'll all get done somehow.

i also learned that all it really takes to reduce my stress to a manageable level is animal crackers and guns'n'roses on the radio.

07 December 2008

sixty-seven years

while he is nowhere near being at the top of my list of favorite presidents (yes, i have a list), i do have to admit that the man knew how to give a speech.

Yesterday, December 7th, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan...

But always will our whole nation remember the character of the onslaught against us. No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.

I believe that I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us.

Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory, and our interests are in grave danger.

With confidence in our armed forces - with the unbounding determination of our people - we will gain the inevitable triumph - so help us God.

[FDR, 8 december 1941]

man, i love world war ii.

(this post in lieu of a "happy pearl harbor day" message, which my sister informed me was a little morbid.)

05 December 2008

on the fifth day of christmas...

...i made traditional danish christmas tree ornaments and dressed up in a kilt for my 8th graders.

i always love a day where you can spend time making craft projects and justify it as part of the curriculum.

i also managed to convince one of the 8th grade boys to wear the kilt. it was priceless. we took yearbook pictures.

04 December 2008

on the fourth day of christmas...

...we have a christmas tree! go us.

- examples of darcy's ornaments: harp, french horn, white house christmas tree
- examples of laura's ornaments: tap dancing moose, anthropomorphic m&m in a santa hat, green aluminum pickle

surprised, anyone?

03 December 2008

on the third day of christmas...

...i finally gave detentions to the chronic offenders in 7th period study hall. they just pushed me a bit. too. far.

also, as to why i'm suddenly posting regularly again. the answer is easy: i am supposed to be working on either a) my huge project due tomorrow night, b) my 20 page paper due in 10 days, or c) lesson plans. and we all know how good i get at procrastinating right before something major is due.

02 December 2008

on the second day of christmas...

...one of the 70something matriarchs at my church declared that she is going to start praying that i will "find a man".

you know the type. efficient. no-nonsense. widowed. million grandchildren. makes her opinions clearly known at meetings. runs the kitchen. single-handedly cooks enough turkey to feed the entire congregation at the thanksgiving potluck. in the church every time the doors are open. when she prays, things happen.

one of those. she told me to "go ahead and start planning the wedding shower, because he's on his way".

heaven help me.

on the first day of christmas...

...i got my car back.

my alternator decided that this past weekend be a GREAT time to stop working. (do you realize how hard it is to find an open, non-busy mechanic the saturday after thanksgiving at 2:00 in the afternoon?) considering the car is ten years old and has close to 170,000 miles on it, i should probably just be surprised that it hasn't outright fallen apart yet, but the whole situation was still rather annoying. especially since i found a mechanic, they figured out what was wrong, had the new part ready to go, and were going to be able to get it finished before closing on saturday, and they went to take out the old alternator annnnnnnddddd...the bracket that attaches the alternator to the engine snapped off. and couldn't be repaired. or a replacement found. until monday morning.

so today i had the privilege of forking over a ridiculously large amount of money to get my car back.

also, while on the subject of old things breaking, about a week ago my gcc computer finally decided to call it quits. after nearly 6 1/2 years. most everybody else got a new one right after graduating, but not me. i put up with that thing until it absolutely refused to go on living. fortunately most everything was backed up. and my new computer has wireless internet! (yes, i know that the rest of the world has had this for five years. it's still exciting.)

04 November 2008

where's the WWF when you need them?

i feel like i should be on some kind of endangered species list: blue whale...siberian tiger...giant panda...conservative in fairfax county...

on a funny note, while manning the carpool line this afternoon, i looked over to see a kindergartener shaking his head as hard as he could while shaking his little fist and saying, "obama will be a BAAADDDD president!!!!!!! bad, bad, bad, bad, bad!!!!!!"

20 October 2008

8th grade Fun Fact of the Day

if you ironed out the state of Colorado, it would be bigger than Texas.

12 October 2008

things you don't see every day

yesterday at a scottish festival, i saw a guy simultaneously play the bagpipes, smoke a cigarette, and drink a yuengling.

i was impressed.

07 October 2008

fact check

so out of morbid curiosity, i actually looked it up.

to be precise, my internal clock thinks i live in hong kong.

30 September 2008

on moscow time

last night i had a ton of work that was due first thing in the morning, and i couldn't stay awake for the life of me. ended up planning lessons during the classes when i was supposed to teach them.

tonight, i still have a ton of work to do, but it doesn't have to be done until noon tomorrow. yet, for some bizarre reason, my body has decided that right now, 2 o'clock in the morning, is a GREAT time to be wide awake and get work done. i'm actually accomplishing a lot, for the first time in several weeks.

i will never understand my internal clock. i believe it thinks i live in russia.

28 September 2008


my best friend from high school has been happily married for nearly five years and had her second child this morning. in comparison, i had a longer relationship with my fish than 2/3 of my boyfriends. should this worry me somewhat?

regardless: welcome, lorelei! congratulations mer, cameron, and sam!

26 September 2008

greetings from the wonderful world of eighth grade

connor: "i have a glass eye."
candace: "no you don't."
connor: "yes i do."
candace: "no you don't. it's moving."
connor: "yes i do. see. poke it. it's glass."
candace: "i don't want to poke your eye. it's not glass."
connor: "yes it is. seriously. poke it. it's glass."


candace: *poke*
connor: "OW! OW! that hurt! i didn't think you'd really do it!"
me: *snort*

24 September 2008

quotes of the week, courtesy of 4th period u.s. history

zim: "what color pen do you want us to use for the test?"
me: "blue or black ink"
zim: "all i have is green."
me: "then why did you ask?"

gabe: "why do they call them ivy league colleges?"
me: "because they have ivy growing on the buildings."
gabe: "sam! my shed is ivy league!"

and my personal favorite, said while in the middle of a discussion of the salem witch trials, voodoo, satanism, modern day witchcraft, and sorcery in the bible (don't ask...discussions like this just sort of happen in 4th period u.s. history):

sam: "in the rastafarian religion, they believe that marijuana gives you spiritual powers and that you need to have lots of children to pass on your ideas."
dan: "so basically it's a religion built around smoking weed and having lots of sex."
me: "pretty much. you can't convert"

sister #2's opinion of government homework

carol: i'm doing my current event on the U.S. developing a 'death ray'
carol: i'm tired of writing about politics
carol: so i'm writing about a death ray

12 September 2008

things i accomplished tonight

tonight i worked in the church nursery. while there, i:

1.) read picture books out loud for 45 minutes, approximately 35 minutes of which was spent paraphrasing so i wouldn't have to read anything that rhymed
2.) physically restrained the pastor's flailing 3-year-old while her mother bolted out the door, then sat with her while she screamed and clung to the doorjamb for 15 minutes
3.) successfully prevented a 7-month-old from using the doorstop as a chew toy

i'd say a job well done.

i also reconnected with the tale of peter rabbit. i'd forgotten what a delightful story that is.

remind me again why i wasn't an elementary ed major...

today during 7th period study hall one of my juniors proposed.

then threw a ball of play-doh at me from across the room.

all in the course of 15 minutes.

hoo boy. it's going to be quite the year.

10 September 2008

short update

my life:

love teaching. hate lesson planning. this is a problem because lesson planning is a fundamental part of being a teacher. right now i'm still planning all my lessons the class period before. i'm hoping by tomorrow morning i'll be at least a week ahead. we'll see how that goes...

grad school is fine. lots of reading. i have a paper due on monday which i haven't started. i went to a history department reception last night with a bunch of professors and everybody told me i was insane for teaching full-time and taking two grad classes. and i do mean everybody. i found it best not to mention the band and the volunteering. i really am insane, aren't i?

still like the band, even if it is time consuming. we have four competitions and a concert over the next seven weeks, which means i don't get free time on the weekends until november. fun times will be had by all.

the office is back on in 15 days. i can't put into words how excited i am about this.

27 August 2008

a brief glimpse into the insanity that is being us (in email form)

27 august 2008
12:27 am
from: laura
to: meredith

My classroom came equipped with a gigantic fiberglass model of the Liberty Bell.

This, in itself, I find pretty cool. Who wouldn't want a big model of the Liberty Bell? A normal person would put it on the filing cabinet and admire it from a reasonable distance. Is this what I did?


I put it on my head. Like a big hat. One of those German helmets with the spike on top. Except it was big enough that the bottom rim of the bell came to my waist, so I essentially looked like a big Kaiser helmet running around on two legs.

I also learned that the inside of the Liberty Bell makes ocean sounds.

27 august 2008
1:53 am
from: meredith
to: laura

Aw... a part of me was hoping it was like the Harry Potter sorting hat, and if you put it on, the disembodied voice of Thomas Jefferson magically told you who to vote for in the next congressional election.

for meredith

from an online conversation with my sister, re. bad john wayne movies:

laura: i recommend avoiding watching the conqueror
mary: sage wisdom
mary: i think i am the only living human being who has seen the end of the conqueror
mary: and i can't remember the end
mary: it's very sad
laura: i always fall asleep
mary: everyone always falls asleep

26 August 2008

new jobs and kneecaps

two brief things occupying my brain right now:

1.) so far, the new job is great. i have a nice classroom, i like all my textbooks, and my coworkers seem really awesome (although now, thanks to my grandma, i always read that word in my head as cow-orkers). we'll see how great i think it is when i have students.

2.) i'm sensing a visit to an orthopedic surgeon looming in the future. drat. for years, if i put pressure on my knee the wrong way while kneeling, my kneecap gets pushed out of place and crushes nerves, tendons, and ligaments in my knee, requiring me to wrench it back into place. this is, by far, the most painful thing i have ever experienced. blinding, searing pain. gasping for breath pain. literally the entire world halts until it goes away pain. i'm sitting here trying to find the words to express just how much this hurts, but i'm coming up short. naturally, i have learned how to avoid this. but every now and then, i'll not be paying attention, and it will happen again. which it did last week at the beach, except this time it took about four times longer than normal to fix. my knee hasn't felt normal since then, so now i'm having to be hyperactively careful about not putting any pressure on it. i'm a little worried, but i'm hoping that it will get better and i won't eventually have to have surgery.

13 August 2008

in which we become good friends with the UPS man

i just ordered sixteen books for my grad classes this fall. yuck. this pretty much destroys all hope for any free time i may have hoped to have over the course of the next four months.

what's even more ridiculous is that all sixteen came from different amazon vendors, which means that sixteen separate boxes are going to be dumped on my doorstep. awesome.

why i don't really function as a normal human being

it is currently 1:09 am. there are several things i should be doing, mainly a.) sleeping, or b.) working on lesson plans. what am i doing? finally updating my blog.

this summer has flown by. i survived my first grad class. hurrah! for the most part, i did well just sitting in the corner and keeping my mouth shut, and i managed to make it through without allowing the bull to get to me. then, during the last half of the last class, somebody insults the marines in wwii and i had an aneurism. it was not fun. i had to keep reminding myself that i never have to see those people again. i start fall semester in about a week and a half. i'm a little apprehensive about the fact that one of the classes has a 14 book reading list. heaven help me. this is what i get for going to grad school full time AND teaching full time. plus playing in a band and volunteering at a crisis pregnancy center.

i'm insane.

i'm extremely apprehensive about the new teaching job. my last day at my dad's was friday. i'll miss the people, but not the commute. or the work, really. most of it was pretty routine. i'm definitely looking forward to being back in the classroom, and everybody i've met at the school seems awesome, but i have an impossible work load. five separate classes. 8th-12th grade. geography, world history I, world history II, US history, and government. five completely different preps. i had enough trouble trying to get lesson plans done for one class, much less five. they said they would try to take one away (hopefully the government - i don't like teaching civics or 12th graders - but most likely WH1), but i haven't heard anything for sure. my first day is the 25th, so i guess i'll find out then. my goal is to get as much lesson planning done this week and next week as possible. so far, it hasn't gone very well. there's just so many more exciting things i've wanted/needed to do.

the one good thing in all of this is that i'm teaching at a private school, so there are no standardized state tests. hallelujah. those things were the bane of my existence in NC. this means that if i want to spend two months doing a model congress, i can. if i want to spend an entire class period on a socratic seminar, no problem. if we just want to discuss current events, who cares. and the lack of a computer projector could prove to be a blessing in disguise, because then i'll have an excuse for just typing up some overhead notes, rather than spending hours of my time creating elaborate power point presentations.

in other news, the wedding of my two good friends from middle school that i've been planning for ten months was on aug 2nd and went amazingly well. the only problem all day was that the cake fell over, but that ended up being pretty hilarious, so nobody got too upset. all the work i put in definitely ended up being worth it, but i don't want to go through it again anytime in the near future. when i get married, we're going to vegas and getting married by elvis.

i'm at the beach now and it's amazing. this place has becoming engrained in my life. we've come basically every year since 1990. i'm loving, loving, loving being able to read all day guilt-free. (part of why the lesson-planning efforts haven't been very successful.) i just camp out on the beach and read for hours. so far i've made it through about four books, and i've got 12 or 13 more in my bag. the one sad thing is that my extended family (except my grandmother) couldn't come, for various reasons. i'm having a great time, but it's just not the same. hopefully everyone will be able to come next year.

after the beach, i'm staying with my grandma in the mountains for a week. i've really missed NC. hopefully i'll be able to catch up with some of the friends i made there. and get some lesson plans written...

(why do i feel like that is going to be the theme of the next year of my life. sigh...)

02 July 2008

exciting update

so i haven't really written anything of even the remotest of significance in quite awhile. i should do something about that.

but, in other news...

i have a teaching job for next year!


(on an unrelated side note, huzzah is a vastly underrated and underutilized word in the english language.)

22 June 2008

change of opinion

so, after the arrival of two cases of cheerwine on my doorstep (hooray for meredith!), followed soon by a six-pack of it straight from hickory, nc (yay for my sister!), i feel the need to amend my previous statement re. the taste of cheerwine. it's not really cherry-flavored ginger ale. it's actually much more like cherry flavored dr. pepper.

but it's still amazing.

09 June 2008

where does she come up with this stuff?

in reference to the loud booming and popping sounds coming from the field next door:

mom: "what is that?"
mary: "i think it's fireworks...or the chinese army."

26 May 2008

memorial day

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

23 May 2008

it's time time go home when...

...you're spending your sunny friday afternoon before a three-day weekend on the phone with a company that uses a jazz muzak version of "give a little whistle" from pinocchio as their on hold music.

correct definition

phone conversation with my father:

me: "does our company have a signatory?"
dad: "what?"
me: "a signatory. it's on a corporate credit application."
dad: "isn't a signatory the second-in-command in a mafia family?"
me: "HUH?"
dad: "oh no, that's a consigliere. never mind."

22 May 2008

for you non-Southerners out there

yes, cheerwine is a real drink.
no, it isn't alcoholic.

but it is fabulous. think cherry-flavored ginger ale.

sadly, however, it isn't sold much outside NC and western VA, so my craving for it will, as yet, remain unfulfilled.

21 May 2008

drink of choice

i wish i had some cheerwine.

20 May 2008

en route from the RUF convention in florida

Laura: "I'm crazy."
Mary: "You think you're crazy. I made my entire vanload of people stop at Pedro's South of the Border at 2am to get our picture taken in front of a 12 foot tall statue of a guy in a sombrero. That's crazy."

14 May 2008

why my job is odd: case #694

part of my job involves making purchases for our subcontractors. this morning, one of them sent me a purchase request form that sent me to a website written in chinese. awesome.

seriously. www.thermol.com

13 May 2008

time to go home now

my boss has "it's a small world" stuck in his head and he keeps singing it.


08 May 2008

the first of many

the grad school thing is truly official now. i've mailed a tuition check. sadly, there are many, many more to come. sigh...

06 May 2008

re: flaming toaster

shelly: "oh, laura...don't be so harsh. toasters don't have sexual preferences. and, anyway, that's not very nice."

05 May 2008

adventures in domesticity: who doesn't love a flaming toaster?

guess who just set her kitchen on fire.

oh! oh! i know! me! me!

what's worse - i was making toast. i need to just give up on life now.

02 May 2008

what happens when everybody from work is at the test range and i'm left alone in the building all day

i just made myself feel sick from spinning in my desk chair.

supposedly, i'm an adult.

who knew?

30 April 2008

why i don't eat breakfast

is 9:15 a.m. too early to justify eating lunch?

this is why i don't eat breakfast on a regular basis. i ate something this morning. now i'm starving. and i'll be starving all morning. however, if i don't eat breakfast i can make it until 1 or 2 p.m. without wanting anything to eat.

bizarre? yes. surprising? not in the least.

24 April 2008

stupid things i have done today

1.) locked my keys in my apartment, requiring my roommate to come home from work to let me in and causing me to leave for work 45 minutes late on a morning where i had a meeting first thing.
2.) through various reasons, ended up getting only six out of the twelve articles i was supposed to pick up from NIH, none of which was the main article that our medical director has needed for the past three weeks.
3.) left a hard-boiled egg in the freezer section of the minifridge at work too long, so that half of it was frozen by the time i got it out. and the shell stuck to the ice in the freezer.
4.) dropped the right earbud from my headphones into my glass of water...and didn't notice for several minutes.

it's just been one of those days.

23 April 2008

while on hold with the Maryland Transportation Authority...

"...remember, there's no winner in a collision between a vehicle and a pedestrian or bicycle. in the state of maryland, over 100 pedestrians are killed each year by motor vehicles. please, always remember to stop fully for pedestrians in crosswalks...

they couldn't just play elevator music like everybody else, could they?

why i miss college

me: "i brought chicken and rice, an apple, and an egg for lunch."
mary: "hmm. i ate oreos and a cheese stick from pizza hut."

21 April 2008


you know what's annoying?

having your unemployment rate go up 15% because one of your employees (who is currently in jail, mind you) drew unemployment for three months while he was actively working as a drug dealer.

08 April 2008

why my job is odd: case #237

they've drawn engineering diagrams in sharpie marker on the windows in my office. do they not realize that this is why we buy paper?

life, or something closely resembling it

recents events/activities/thoughts, in no particular order:

- watched the ncaa championship game last night with some friends. since the tarheels choked on saturday, i didn't really care who won. i followed my SOP of not paying any attention until the last five minutes of the game, which works well. then i fell asleep during overtime. a die-hard sports fan i am not.

- i'm quite excited for baseball. i really need to look up to see when the braves are in town again.
but i don't really care who's playing; i just love baseball.

- i have my first meeting with my graduate advisor today. i have several concerns i want to talk to him about, namely:
1.) can you get a masters degree in american history and still get into a u.k. doctoral program?
2.) if i switch my concentration from american to modern european, can i get a job with an american history type museum if i decide not to do doctoral work in the u.k.?
3.) if i do modern european and don't go to the u.k., can i switch back to american for my doctorate?
4.) since what i really care about is 20th century history, will they let me do a combination of modern european and modern american for my concentration?
5.) if i don't write a thesis (i don't have to b/c of my six credit applied history internship), can i get into cambridge?
6.) will i be certified as insane if i write a thesis when i don't have to?

it should be quite the meeting.

- i'm planning on teaching again next year. a few weeks ago i started the interview process with a private school near where i'll be going to grad school. they have an open 7th and 8th grade history position, which is perfect for me. i don't really want to teach high school again, and i have no desire to teach in the public schools again (for various reason, the major one being that i don't want to go through the hassle of getting my pennsylvania license changed to a virginia license). i have several friends who graduated from this school, go to church with several of the faculty members, it's five minutes from my high school, etc. so i'm pretty familiar with it. my interview went great, and the lesson i taught to a 7th grade class went fantastically. yet i still haven't heard back. i was supposed to hear back last thursday. it is not 10a.m. on tuesday. this is not a good sign, and i am not happy. i was really counting on getting this job. but the other day i found forty-nine other private schools in the n. virginia area where i would be interested in teaching. surely one of them needs a history teacher.

- i think i'm going to move to london when i finish my masters degree. i fell in love with the city when i visited there two years ago, and what's to stop me? there's a few private american-curriculum high schools there that i will try to teach at. which is why i'm going back to teaching next year - you need at least three years experience to teach at these places.

- i saw leatherheads last weekend. i really liked it, and not just because it stars my future husband.

- carol anne stayed with me last weekend b/c our parents were in south carolina for a family reunion. she basically slept the whole weekend. and ate. and watched t.v. oh, to be seventeen again...

- we think we're going to rent a house next year. the roommates' uncle is getting remarried and wants someone to rent his house who a) will not destroy it, and b) won't disturb the retirees next door. he's putting it on the market until the end of may (our 60 days notice), but if he doesn't sell it, it's ours. i'm super-excited. it's not much bigger than i current place square-footage-wise, but the space is better organized. it's got the same number of rooms that we have now, plus a finished off basement. it'll be nice to have a yard and no loud neighbors. i'm just not looking forward to moving the piano.

- loud neighbors. we are surrounded by extremely loud people. over the course of the past eight months, most of our neighbors have moved and been replaced. so there is noise constantly, day and night. tv's, people arguing, music, running around upstairs. and my personal favorite, one of the few who hasn't moved, Electric Guitar at 1am Man.

- the lady downstairs. she is the best. she has loud parties all weekend, plays music all the time (last night "lady marmelade" was thumping for a very long time), and keeps darcy up all night having sex with her boyfriend. (quote of the year from darcy: [early on a sunday morning] "i don't know who the neighbor is dating, but i know his name is johnny.") YET, and this made me angry, darcy and emily were practicing kickboxing for 15 minutes at 7PM - 7! not late at night, 7 - and she started banging on the ceiling with a broom handle. she better not start doing it when i'm there, or i'll play "heart and soul" on the piano for two hours. don't think i won't.

- 80s clothing. i'm going to a concert of an 80s cover band this weekend with the girls, and i can't wait. i've already got most of the outfit: sparkly legwarmers, fishnets, black tube skirt, sparkly off-the-shoulder sweater, big belt, and ginormous earrings that i stole from my mother. and, of course, we will see the return of the glitter rose shoes. all i need is some hot pink leggings and i'll be set. wal-mart here i come.

- salvation army. as a result of this 80s clothing hunt, i have rediscovered my love of the salvation army. i'm never buying new furniture again. the salvo in annandale has gorgeous furniture.

- gas prices are killing me. i drive 120 miles round-trip to work every day. not good. other than that, i like work. i've been taking some international business classes online for work through the marine corps university, and i love them. it really gives me better insight into american immigration patterns and native responses to such, because you can see the effects that the different cultural elements, especially communication, had on the immigrant populations when they tried to integrate into us culture. yeah, i'm a dork.

i warned you there was no order to any of this.

traffic fun

i have officially become one of those people whose lives revolve around traffic patterns on I-66.

03 April 2008

slightly morbid

today i learned something new:

you can buy caskets at costco. both standard and expediated. also urns, both human and pet. it begs the question: if you do decide to save the $400 by buying a standard shipped casket, does that mean you have to store it in the garage until you die? you could certainly scare the bejeebers out of people at halloween. (on that note, we had some neighbors in california who got really into halloween and used a coffin as a decoration. we always wondered how they explained it to the moving company.)

seriously. not kidding.

there's something wrong when you can buy a coffin, dvd players, fish tanks, and ten pound containers of pretzels all in the same store.

i wonder if you have to buy them in bulk.

27 March 2008

goofy moment of the day

actual conversation between me and a customer service guy in california.

me: "I need to order a replacement radiation detection badge."
guy: "Why?"
me: "One of our employees destroyed his this morning."
guy: "What happened to it?"


me: "He accidentally flushed it down the toilet."

i made his day.

25 March 2008

22 March 2008


i am now officially a grad student.

heaven help me.

20 March 2008

dull job

and the official Most Bored Woman on the Eastern Seaboard is...

the lady answering the phone at the State of Maryland Office of the Comptroller

19 March 2008

food of the moment

i am in love with frozen green beans.

and jim halpert. (yes, i realize he's not a food, or technically a real person, but i feel the need to point out my devotion once again.)

17 March 2008

st pat's

i have leprechaun socks!!

if i was at all able to figure out how to put photos on here, i would post a picture.

26 February 2008


i have officially applied for grad school.

and the wait begins...

13 February 2008

very angry at the traffic gods

today it took me 3 1/2 hours to get home from work. 2 1/2 hours of that was spent going 8 miles. 2 hours of that was spent going 4 miles.

d.c. is not a fun place to live in bad weather.

08 February 2008

she had a deprived childhood

i found out the other day that my roommate has never seen the indiana jones movies. i was appalled. it feels like i saw them hundreds of times in middle school. i wanted to be marian ravenwood. i wanted to marry indy. i wanted to spend my life flying all over the world, climbing through caves and outwitting nazis. so...our weekend plans include:


04 February 2008

an open letter, part two

dear virginia highway patrolman,

don't tuck your sweater into your pants. it makes you look like barney fife. this is not a good thing.



the GRE is over. thank goodness. i did well, which was good, but the test itself was awful. 3 1/2 hours of staring at a computer screen does not equal fun. i think my general reaction after finishing can best be summed up in the words of the immortal clark w. griswold - "hallalujah, holy shit. where's the tylenol?"

but now i get my life back. it's nice not to carry vocab flashcards around with me everywhere i go. and i'm not having to spend my evenings holed up in the library with sample math problems.

life has been interesting lately. the bad thing is that my great-aunt had a very bad stroke last weekend. last i heard, she was paralyzed on her left side and she couldn't talk, but she could sit up for a little while and could answer questions by nodding her head. sadly, this is huge progress. unfortunately she's probably not going to get much better. part of why she's so bad off is that she lives alone and it could have been as much as 24 hours before they found her. my aunt talked to her saturday morning, and they didn't find her until sunday night. it's things like this that make me scared to grow old.

i've had a pretty awesome weekend so far. i took the whole day off on thursday, so after the test i came home and spent the rest of the day in a zombie-like, sleep-deprived state, lying on the couch and watching tv. friday night i went out to eat with D and some of her friends from work. on saturday morning i slept through my alarm (see previous statement on sleep-deprivation) and somehow made it from my bed to annandale in 23 minutes. i don't really want to think about how many traffic laws i violated. i'm really liking my work at the pregnancy center. i just wish it didn't have to involve early hours on a saturday.

i'm really loving my apartment complex. the current reason is because of the neighbors. not the neighbors in my actual building, mind you. they are quite annoying. (the winner is a toss-up between Angry Dude Upstairs, Electric Guitar at 1am Man, or Loud TV at Midnight Guy. we're not counting SWAT Team Apartment, because they haven't made any noise since that incident.) one building over is an apartment of three girls - jillian, brianne, and andrea - who i met through frontline, and they are awesome. then last month two other grove city kids, josh and joe (also frontline people), moved into the building on the other side. it's been really great being able to hang out. it reminds me of being back in college, where it's really easy to see people, just without all the silly rules about having shoes in the door and how many lights had to be on (ongoing debate: does a strand of christmas lights, a lava lamp, and the tv equal a light?).

so saturday night, the neighbors + jon went to eat indian food down the street, which involved standing in the entryway of the restaurant for 45 minutes while we waited for the table. josh appointed himself the official greeter for the restaurant, similar to the old men who give out the bulletins at church, which meant that he gave a hearty welcome to everyone who came in the door. people were a little scared. then we made dessert and watched a movie. it was really nice just to be able to relax. i've been so stressed out about the GRE that i haven't had any time to chill. we decided that we're turning into an episode of friends. with that decision made, we also declared that josh would be the one to get married accidentally in vegas.

tonight matt threw a pretty fantastic superbowl party. it was in the party room on the 21st floor of his building, with a pretty cool view of arlington. i brought lasagna and it was a big hit. i like it because it makes people think i'm an amazing cook. i don't tell them that the rest of my cooking repertoire consists of chicken pie, salmon patties, grilled chicken breasts, and varied and assorted casseroles. plus the old standbys of ramen noodles and kraft mac'n'cheese. (in my defense, however, it's not that i can't cook, i just choose not to most of the time. what is the point of putting in a ton of effort on some amazing dish if i'm the only one who is going to eat it and i would have been satisfied with three days of eating chicken and broccoli casserole?) i had a really great time at the party. i was able to talk to a lot of people i hadn't seen in awhile. and there were lizards dancing the "thriller" dance. it doesn't get much better than that.

the next week at work should be uneventful. hopefully. tomorrow is my 24th birthday. last week i had to stop and try to remember how old i was going to be. not a good sign. i'm not really doing anything to celebrate. i'm having dinner with my family on tuesday (because i haven't been to frontline in a month) and my mom is taking me shopping, but that's about it. i'm kind of boring sometimes.

29 January 2008

the state of apartment #13, bedroom #2

the GRE is eating my soul and sucking away my will to live.

and i'm sick.

i get my life back thursday afternoon. hopefully.

of course this would be the response of the venerated mr. cherry...

Auto response from eirelady: my feet are cold. i have to study for the GRE. yeah, i'm not liking life so much right now.
Cap'tMannix: Put on socks. Then just declare you know everything you need to for the GRE.


15 January 2008

an open letter

dear credit card companies,

if i did not respond to the first thirty-seven letters you sent offering a new card, zero interest, bonus points, and a free car wash, what makes you think i am going to respond to letter number thirty-eight?

please stop killing the trees.


08 January 2008

slightly disheartening

going to the gym makes me depressed. why? because no matter how much you go or how hard you work, you will always have to go back. over and over again.

for the rest of your life.


04 January 2008

little known fact

at 3:17 on friday afternoon, time actually slows down.

really. not joking.

03 January 2008

varied and assorted reasons why i haven't really had time to update lately

1.) the GRE.

this is the bane of my existence. i hate it. very, very, very much. i have been "studying" for it since about october, but sometime last week it hit me that i have to take it fairly soon, so now i've started worrying about it. and obsessively trying to memorize vocab and remember 8th grade math. unfortunately, i get the feeling that this is going to be like finals at college, where no matter how much i studied, i still felt unprepared. what's worse, anytime i'm not studying, i feel guilty about it. at least this particular offshoot of my normal insanity will go away after january 31st.

2.) wedding planning.

not mine. one of my best friends since middle school. she's getting married next august and i'm the wedding coordinator. which is time consuming. but i love doing this. if it didn't require evening and weekend work, i would do it professionally. (i'm quite attached to a guaranteed 9-5 work schedule.)

3.) christmas.

we spent a week in north carolina. it was lovely. i've really missed it there, especially being around my family. i got to see lots and lots of relations and ate lots and lots of food. i also drove up to grandfather mountain and got some more stuff for my uniform for the pipe band.

4.) other travel.

i went to lancaster for the leathermanzullo wedding. it was, in a word, classy. the whole thing was so very, very chic from start to finish. i thought it was beautiful. i loved the decorations and the use of black and white as the colors. (i did not, however, love the hangover i got the next day. it wasn't fair - i wasn't even buzzed, yet i still had a hangover. that's what i get for drinking a glass of wine.) and it was wonderful seeing everyone again. travis has decided to plan a fake wedding for the summer, just so we have an excuse to get together.

5.) general laziness.

i've been sleeping a lot lately. oh well.

why my job is odd: case #478

we work with men who are referred to within the company as nothing but crazy pete, psycho dave, and tom the alien.