Friday, November 30, 2007

lucky numbers 14, 15, 16, 17, 28, 38

Went to Pei Wei for dinner - fortune cookie informs me of the following:

"The love of your life will appear in front of you unexpectedly!"

Ok, so not to sound unappreciative (and don't get me wrong; I'm really glad to hear that he will be "appearing"), but unexpectedly? Could I at least get a general time frame and location, like "next week while you are pumping gas," so I don't mace the guy accidentally? Or "when you are 75 and hobbling across the street" so I don't wait around for this guy until it's too late to have some babies?

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Maggie is famous! (a.k.a. using my dog pics for work to avoid image rights issues)

white noise

Sheesh, you pass out one time at physical therapy and then every session after that people are constantly saying things like "You look pale, are you doing ok? Gonna pass out?"

Seriously? How is it even possible to look MORE PALE that I already am?

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

guess who's in the doghouse?

So, it's never a good thing when you open the front door and see a hallway covered in feathers
...and it wasn't that way when you left.

a few tips for Dallas drivers, based on observations over the past four days

- when the people in the lane next to you brake, it is not necessary to do any sympathy braking
- when it is dark outside and raining, it's a smart idea to turn on your headlights
- if you're in the "fast lane," a.k.a. the passing lane, and are pacing the person next to you for miles, therefor causing a backup of drivers behind you restlessly veering to the left or right and craning their necks to see if there is a reasonable explanation for this situation, please either speed up and get in front of the person next to you, or slow down and get behind them.
- when someone merges onto 30W from, oh, say, 1st Avenue, and has a mere five car lengths of lane to merge left, LET THEM OVER!
- I know that sometimes it is annoying to pay attention to all of the well-marked construction areas in Expo Park, but please remember that all four (or six or eight...) of your tires should be to the RIGHT of the yellow double striped line. If you see cars coming directly toward you, and the drivers are honking and flashing their lights at you, chances are you are on the wrong side of those pesky lines. Kindly MOVE OVER.
- Although I pity your clearly-tiny, well, member, I am not impressed with your Hummer/big shiny grill/Escalade/large white clean clearly-never-used-for-hauling-crap Ford 350/Landrover/make-your-car-shake bass/Expedition/over-sized rims. I am, however, jealous of your Honda Fit/VW Rabbit or GTI/Nissan Versa.
- Those white stripes in parking lots that are used to define parking slots are not just suggestions, YOUR VEHICLE IS ACTUALLY SUPPOSED TO FIT BETWEEN THEM. I know, crazy right? So if you either can't drive your massive vehicle well enough to accomplish this feat, or if your vehicle simply doesn't fit, try downsizing and then get some therapy for your compensation issues. And please stop trying to fit in the compact spots - those are for me.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

through the wall or take a fall

Yesterday was the twenty-eighth anniversary of by birth. And in my twenty-eight years I have done quite a few things that I am proud of. However, there are still items on my to-do list I want to check off.

things I have accomplished:
- I earned my first 4.o in college and made the dean's list more than once
- I have been to Europe and was fortunate enough to visit Paris, London, Sheffield, and Wakefield
- I have driven 1,500 miles across the country by myself...and back again
- I landed an internship in NYC when I was 20 and lived in Times Square for 3 months, and it remains my favorite city in the US so far
- I called off a wedding at the age of 23 because I knew I wasn't ready
- In college I made pumpkin crème brûlée from scratch and dammit, it was amazing
- I have lived in at least seven different cities in five different states and definitely do not think I am finished yet
- I switched careers at the age of 26, taking an unpaid internship and starting all over
- I was on the "jumbotron" at a Dallas Stars game
- I went white water rafting in West Virginia and made it through two rapids that were a level 5
- I have always been pretty good at intuitively knowing "when to bet and when to fold," as they say
- I can write an awesome essay or research paper, and definitely know the difference between when to use "good" and when to use "well"
- I have had training for disaster relief and am Red Cross certified for it
- My dog and I saved the life of a 4-week-old kitten this year and she has been a fantastic addition to our little family

Still on the to-do list:
- There are still several states I haven't been to yet, and I would like to spend some time visiting Seattle, Portland, Boston, San Francisco, and Denver.
- For many years I have wanted to visit Australia. I also want to see Portofino Italy, the South of France, and Tokyo
- I want to go hang gliding and bungee jumping
- I would like to buy a house in the next couple of years
- There are still a lot of records I need to find for my collection, and if you see Moon River on vinyl, let me know...I also want to get my records converted to MP3 files
- There are several computer programs I want to learn, including 3D Studio Max, Dreamweaver, Flash, and Final Cut
- I want to knit something of substance, like a sweater. Or a dining table.
- I'd like to restore a scooter or a vw bug at some point
- I want to check out Burning Man at least once
- I want to go to Marfa, TX to see the Marfa lights
- I hear Cedar Point is an awesome amusement park with some crazy roller coasters
- I want to hike part, if not all, of the Appalachian Trail
- There are several more National Parks I want to visit, including Yellowstone, Yosemite, and the Grand Canyon

that's all I can think of for now, but I'm sure the list will continue to grow...

Saturday, November 24, 2007

feast of wire

currently reading: Emma by Jane Austin. And I am only slightly ashamed to say I was inspired to read it after seeing Becoming Jane. Oh shut your trap. I am allowed to indulge in a chick flick now and then, especially a period chick flick (historic period, people) where I can indulge my deep-rooted love for all things involving corsets, velvet, layers of silk, pantaloons, gloves, hats, muffs, ballroom dance, fans, leg-o-mutton sleeves, more corsets, empire waists, pale skin, and any other combination of the aforementioned items.

currently listening to: mostly my limited vinyl collection, focusing on Buddy Holly, Patsy Cline, some Ricky Nelson, and a sprinkle of Simon&Garfunkel thrown in for good measure. But I think it is truly impossible to grow tired of Patsy Cline...she is my guilty pleasure at the moment. Other than that I am slightly obsessed with some older Death Cab cds, but that has already been covered today.

on my mind: perhaps I shouldn't have eaten so many milk duds on a day when I chose to have homemade chocolate chunk cookies (ok, they were break-n-bake, but the people at work didn't need to know that) for breakfast along with two cups of fair trade coffee sweetened with gingerbread coffee syrup. too...much...refined...sugar...

you can't swim in a town this shallow

After seeing for myself what was already in our "J" drive at work, the music drive that "doesn't exist," (Hootie and the Blowfish, Hoobastank, Incubus, Lifehouse, Audioslave, and Tool, for example), I felt it quite necessary to bring one of my CD binders to work with me to dump some more music in it. So of course, this offered a nice chance to get reacquainted with music I hadn't listened to in some time. One of these cds was The Photo Album by Death Cab for Cutie, which I bought in 2001 or so. I always liked the fifth track, Why You'd Want to Live Here, but suddenly it had, as they say, a whole new meaning.

When I was living in Los Angeles, I have never missed or appreciated Dallas/Fort Worth so much. And I found it interesting that the same basic conversation repeated itself over and over with various people while I was there:

me: So do you like living in LA/Silverlake/Studio City/Burbank/Culver City/Pasadena/Hollywood/West Hollywood?

to which the person would reply with any various combination of the following:

- Well, the traffic is a nightmare/the pollution is awful/
my car just got towed/I'm constantly getting parking tickets/my rent is astronomical/the people here are always name dropping and fake/everyone is "in the business"/I'm barely scraping by/I miss my family/my job is crap...
but would always end with:
...but the ocean is close by and the weather is great..."

me: so when was the last time you went to the beach?

them:oh, months ago, it takes like, and hour to get out there with traffic. And it's so cold you can't really get in the water anyway. But I am going to San Diego/Las Vegas/San Francisco/Lake Tahoe/Palm Springs next week ; I just can't wait to get out of the city.

So when I came upon this song that I hadn't heard in years, I listened to it about 5 times in a row. They hit the nail on the head, really. I was always so stressed in LA about something...if I was driving I was worried about where I was going to park my car or how many left turns I was going to have to make without a left turn arrow (all of them usually) or if I was going to get lost... and then when my car finally was parked I was worried about getting a ticket or getting towed, and if friends were coming over I was worried about where they were going to park, I was worried about making money and paying bills, I was constantly scared my car would break down in the midst of rush hour, I was worried I'd get sick because I didn't have insurance, and on and on.

And yes, some of these are things I would worry about in any city. But in LA it was all somehow heightened to a frenzy. I was so tense and worried and stressed that I turned into another person. And the few times I left LA and went to, say, San Diego or Joshua Tree, I could feel my shoulders relax and my stomach stop churning as I left the city and saw the skyline in my rear view mirror. And I have to say that I spent three months in NYC when I was twenty and have been back many times to visit, and I never ever felt this way when I was there. I would move there in a heartbeat if the right situation presented itself. But I will never ever move back to Los Angeles. And I rarely use the word never.

Now, I don't want to leave this entry on a completely negative note. Yeah, there were moments in LA, driving down Sunset Blvd with the sun shining and my windows down, with rows of palm trees standing tall like wiry soldiers, when I thought "yeah, this is nice." And winding my way through Laurel Canyon to soak up a day of chilling by the pool in a beautiful house in the hills I could never afford with some cool, nice people I had met...that was fun. But these were the exceptions. And yeah, I think if perhaps I had been there under different circumstances, and if I hadn't been forced to play a losing game of dodge ball with the stresses that life hurled unrelentingly at me during that time, maybe I would have a more positive impression of Los Angeles. But, it was what it was, for me, at that time. And thank God Dallas welcomed me back with open arms. I may not be in Texas forever...there are other cities I want to explore and states I want to visit...but I will call it home for now.

(Unfortunately, I have no idea how to post a song on my blog. I really wish I did.)
So in lieu of the actual song, here are the lyrics:

Why You'd Want To Live Here

I'm in Los Angeles today: it smells like an airport runway,
jet fuel stenches in the cabin and lights flickering at random.
I'm in Los Angeles today: garbage cans comprise the medians
of freeways always creeping,
even when the population's sleeping.

And I can't see why you'd want to live here.

I'm in Los Angles today: asked a gas station employee
if he ever had trouble breathing
he said It varies from season to season, kid.

It's where our best are on display:
motion picture actor's houses maps are never ever current,
so save your film and fifteen dollars.

And I can't see why you'd want to live here.

Billboards reach past the tallest buildings
We are not perfect, but we sure try
As UV rays degrade our youth with time.

The vessel keeps pumping us through this entropic place
In the belly of the beast that is Californ-i-a
I drank from a faucet and I kept my receipt
for when they weigh me on the way out (here nothing is free)

The Greyhounds keep coming dumping locusts into the streets
until the gutters overflow,
and Los Angeles thinks
I might explode
someday soon.

It's a lovely summer's day and I can almost see the skyline
through a thickening shroud of egos
(is this the city of angels or demons?)
Here the names are what remain:
stars encapsulate the gold lane
and they need constant cleaning for when the tourists begin salivating,

you can't swim in a town this shallow
You will most assuredly drown tomorrow.

Friday, November 9, 2007

in an attempt to continue ignoring the bright pink elephant in the room...

...I am posting funny pics of Maggie and Ghetto Kitty. Why? Because they are hilarious. And because it's my blog. The first pic is my favorite, because it looks like I said "ok you guys, now give me a silly one!"

For those of you who don't know, I adopted Maggie the greyhound in June, and in September while we were on a walk, she found a tiny, emaciated, 4-week-old kitten in a parking lot behind Minc, who has grown into the rambunctious ball of fur you see in these images. She is teething on everything, including Maggie (as you can see in the third picture), but Maggie has, amazingly, never snapped at her or growled at her for this. (She has on occasion growled at her if she gets too close to her food, treats, or Kong, at which point I remind Ghetto that Maggie does not eat her food.) Maggie does occasionally give me that look (see pic two), at which time I remind her that she is the one who found Ghetto Kitty. And since Ghetto was never properly weaned from her mother, I have actually caught her trying to nurse on Maggie. Seriously. And still no reaction from Maggie, even with Ghetto's sharp little teeth (see pic 3).

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Week 5

Two days ago I had my fifth weekly pelvic floor therapy appointment "Amy" at my doctor's office. The biofeedback showed no improvement in my spasms/minute. I met with the doctor afterward (I meet with her every fifth or sixth appointment to touch base on treatment). She could tell I was disappointed with seeing no improvement, especially since I am now doing the electronic stimulation/biofeedback at her office once a week and physical therapy three times a week. She reminded me that it took my body years and years to get to this point, and it will take a while for it to "unwind." I also expressed frustration on the limited amount of information available on Levator Ani Spasms online and told her that my friend Laura went to the NYU medical library to see what she could learn and only found one article about it. She reminded me that this problem also goes by several other names and that I might find more info under "pelvic floor tension myalgia." She then copied a recent article she had about the subject titled Physical Therapy for Pelvic Pain: Understanding the Musculoskeletal Connection. The article reiterated that ballet and gymnastics contribute to this (I took ballet from the ages of 3-13 and gymnastics for a few years in there too, along with tap, ballroom, jazz...), as well as prolonged sitting (ummm...I'm a graphic designer), and general stress, anxiety, and tension (well, just look at the past year I've had). And as a note, my physical therapist (we'll call her "T") said that for her patients who have the opposite problem as me, patients with a relaxed and loose pelvic floor caused by things such as natural aging and childbirth, she actually teaches balletic exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, such as pliés. Because my pelvic floor has been trained all of these years to contract through dance and everything I've already discussed, I have the opposite problem of these women.

At physical therapy today I asked T if having a large waist-to-hips ratio has impacted this in any way. The "average" woman has a 10 inch difference between her waist and hips, but mine is more than ten. I sleep on my side, but my hips hurt in the morning and it has been this way as far back as I can remember. T said yes. Because this causes a deeper curve at my waist and my spine cannot be straight while sleeping, and because I tend to sleep on my left side, this unevenness has contributed to my hip rotation.

So the four-copays-a-week continue for 6 more weeks and I remain optimistic and very very grateful for such amazing doctors, my physical therapist, and a relatively quick diagnosis.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Bed Bath Busted

Remember when you were a kid and you would look through HighLights magazine at the dentist or doctor's office? Remember the front page with the illustration and you searched for the hidden objects? It's like that, except it's a mass marketing e-mail coupon, and instead of looking for objects you are looking for two large, staring-you-right-in-the-face typos.

Spell check, people!!