Monday, October 31, 2011

I Feel Like a Hobbit

Have I mentioned before how awesome my job is? I work with robots and when they need to be upgraded in the field, I get sent to do it. It's just so hard working in amazing places like New York City and London. You heard me right, I just got back from Jolly Old England. Three days of travel for three hours of work and one day of sightseeing? Yes, please. Technically, we were stationed in a town about an hour south west of London, Basingstoke, but it gave us a great jumping off point to visit Stonehenge and Windsor Castle.

This is the Portsmouth Arms Pub. We ate here twice. It was such an authentic countryside pub: thatched roof, dogs running around inside, thick wood ceiling beams, and old, deep fireplaces. It felt like something out of 'Lord of the Rings' and the food was so comforting.

You couldn't see anything for miles around Stonehenge. The wind was blustering and the sheep were grazing like a scene from a Thomas Hardy story. While Stonehenge was impressive, it was still hard to get a sense of scale when you're 30 feet from it. I would have loved to be able to walk through it.

By the way, sheep are awesome. This one had a bird.

Who says the food is bad in England? Imagine trying to eat lunch when this is right behind you. Yeah, we stopped back on the way to the car to get a couple of pieces to go. Mmm, double chocolate gateau...

This is Windsor Castle, the castle the royal family still uses. We went on a tour through about 1/6 of the main part of the castle and it took over an hour. The place is GIGANTIC. One of my favorite documentaries is 'Windsor Castle: A Royal Year' and it shows how truly awesome this castle is. Rent it if you haven't seen it. I think it'll go on my Christmas List this year.

This guard kept giving me the stink eye. I don't know what his problem was, could he not figure out that I wanted a picture with him? I'm pretty sure that I was like the 400th person to take a picture with him that day. My sister called him paunchy and he might want to consider a bigger coat.

Next time I'm taking London by storm. I may have to go back in early December and I'm already plotting out all the sites I need to see.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Jurassic Park 4: Update 1

That's right. I'm calling this 'Update 1' because I plan on spreading any and all Jurassic Park 4 news I stumble across.

And now, from, a quote from Steve Spielberg:

     The screenplay is being written right now by Mark Protosevich. I'm hoping that will
     come out in the next couple of years. We have a good story. We have a better story
     for four than we had for three.

I imdb-ed Mark Protosevich to see what else he's written: Thor (not bad), I Am Legend (haven't gotten around to seeing it but I've heard it's not bad), and Poseidon (oh dear). So I'm a little worried now, but as long as it's better than Steve Spielberg's Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull, I'll be ok.  

But seriously?!? I have to wait "a couple of years"? That's movie speak for 2015. That's just not fair. I guess that gives me plenty of time to work on my costume. I'm thinking something like this now:

But in grown-up size. And with more fake blood

Friday, October 28, 2011

Fan of Friday: Week of 10/28/2011

Guess what I'm doing all weekend? Baking!

Saturday is my dad's birthday and while he's out of town until really late Sunday, I'll be baking cookies for his birthday. All he told me he wanted for his birthday was a basket of cookies. And all of this stems from his jealousy of my basket of cookies. Kind of a long story...

You know all the drama we went through in buying our house, especially with our bank, Chase? After all was said and done, they sent us a survey to rate our experience and let me tell you, I don't think I've been so excited for anything in my entire life. I was ready to let them have it.

First mistake Chase made: our loan agent tried to manipulate us into giving him a better score. He told us that it wasn't really a rating of Chase but a rating of him. Well, he was like 80% of the crappiness of the experience so he really didn't help his case.

Second mistake Chase made: on their survey, 'Average' is a 5. I don't know about you, but to me, 'Average' is a 7 given years and years of a 'C' being average. I probably would have given them 6's and 7's, but the experience was definitely below average so they got 4's and 5's.

Well, about a month after the survey, once we've completely moved into our lovely dream home, the package arrives for Dan. It's a huge box and I didn't recognize the sender. I assumed it was a housewarming present from one of his relatives or something. Well, he came home and he unwrapped it while I read the note. To summarize:

     "We're sorry your experience at Chase sucked. We apologize with this giant basket of
     cookies and brownies. We hope you'll still use us in the future and recommend us to
     everyone you know."

Umm, no. Not going to recommend you.

Anyway, so now I plan on baking all weekend. And becuase it's fall and he loves peanut butter cookies, there's an obvious theme. Now to find a basket that will fit it all...

Reese's Rice Krispy Treats
Peanut Butter Cookies and Cream Spread
Oreo Pops
Monster Munch Popcorn
Rolo Cookies
Peanut Butter Nutella Cookies

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Finally Getting a New Phone

Maybe this is un-American of me, but I don't like upgrading my stuff unless I actually need an upgrade. Would I like the battery to last longer on my Ipod Mini? Sure, but as long as I charge it up before I go running, it's no problem.

But my cellphone has just become annoying enough that it's finally time to get a new phone. While my Samsung still works as it did the first day I got it in July 2007, its just not up to par anymore.

I don't know how much longer I can stand to go with replying to texts by talking to myself "Press 3, one, two, three times. Now, Press 2 once. Oops, pushed it too many times. Press delete. Oh crap! Accidentally deleted the whole text. Screw it. I'll just call them. They aren't answering? They must be in class or something. Ugh..."

Also, do you know how many times we've been out and about and just had the urge to go to a movie? Did you know movie theaters aren't listed in the phone book? They'd get so much more business from me if I could have just called them after finding a phone book in the back of my car and told me when the latest "Fast and Furious" is playing. 

Oh baby. Droid 3, I want you so bad
So, after numerous trips to the Verizon store, I've settled on the Droid 3. It's got a keyboard (because I cannot type worth a damn on a touchscreen), a big screen, and can shockingly get internet! It can only get 3G rather than 4G, but since I don't know the difference, I'm going to call it good.

The biggest problem: trying to get on a contract with my new husband. Phone companies are beyond ridiculous! He's coming over from Sprint and since he's originally from upstate, he's got a different area code and can't switch companies without losing his number. He's such a sweetie and gave up his number. But then there's the task of the fact that my phone is still on my parents' plan. Throw in the fact too that the cheapest phones are through and the possible free upgrades I've accrued by holding off on upgrading for so long and you've got a huge mess. Big old technology mess.

To sum up, Dan's got his new phone, new phone number, and I'm still frustratingly beating on a phone that I've had longer than I've had Dan. This is his third phone. Nope, I'm not bitter. Not bitter at all, but at least we can look up movie times now...

Monday, October 24, 2011

Project House Update: Turtle

The one who has probably had the toughest adjustment to the move has got to be Turtle. One of the things we loved about the house is that it came with the perfect little enclosure for Turtle.

But it hasn't been easy on him. He went from having free range over a fairly large backyard with a patch of grass to having his own smaller, desert environment. It should be better for him though: a full grown Palo Verde tree, dirt instead of gravel, cactus, and the risk of being hit by a stray golf ball is MUCH smaller.

So, first thing Dan and I did was build him a new house. Combine some cinder blocks, particle board, and a whole bunch of dirt and you have instant tortoise house. With the drainage in the enclosure, we could only really build it in one spot.

The next step was adding in some more plants. The advantage of Turtle's patch of grass was that if I ever forgot to feed him, he had a back up food source. So I printed a list of safe plants for him to eat and headed to the nursery.

I've planted three batches of plants. First batch: desert mallow, parsley, and a bunch of petunias. I thought that they would make good back-up plants. He wouldn't have to eat them as long as I remembered to feed him every day. I was sooooo wrong. The day after planting them, I came home from work and my petunias looked like they had wilted away. After closer examination, I realized all the leaves had little half moons missing from them. Turtle had gnawed on every single leaf of my petunias. And the parsley. The parsley has kind of rebounded but only one of my original six petunias kind of remains.

My poor surviving petunia

Second batch: a mulberry bush, a hibiscus bush, more petunias, and some cilantro.

This time I had more knowledge of what Turtle likes to eat so I thought I was prepared. He wouldn't be able to eat enough of the tall mulberry and hibiscus bushes to kill them. I tracked his footprints through the area and knew the places I thought he might miss them. I grabbed an extra cinder block and thought if I planted some of the petunias higher, he wouldn't be able to get them. Well, as you can see, he ate almost every low leaf off the hibiscus. He found all the low petunias and, while they are still alive, they are worse for wear. The worst of it was the cilantro. He ate ALL of it. I found him the next day sitting on top of the several stems that remained. The only survivors were the mulberry bush (which actually has berries, who knew?) and the cinder block petunias.

Third batch: another hibiscus, parsley, kale, cassia, mallow, cilantro, and mint.

My remaining kale and cilantro

I really thought I would nail it this time. He doesn't like to eat the plants with the desert leaves as much so I put them at ground level. I bought smaller cinder blocks so he might be able to nibble at the tastier ones without killing them. I don't know if he's a gymnast or something, but the kale is just gone. GONE! Dan thinks it's a ground squirrel but I know Turtle and I bet he could get it if he wanted.

If I manage to catch a picture of Turtle enjoying his new home, this'll be the first place I post it.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Fan of Friday: Week of 10/21/2011

The weather has still been teasing us here (seriously? 90 degrees again?), it still doesn't feel like Fall. But I can still dress like it's Fall thanks to the extreme air conditioning in my office. And do you know what item of clothing I most associate with Fall?


I haven't been very good at layering in the past so I've been actively investing time and money to get better and cardigans are the perfect solution. Over dresses, over summer tops, under jackets, they are just so versatile!

It's impossible to not look more feminine in a great crewneck cardigan, like Bernadette from "Big Bang Theory". And while I haven't tried it yet, I really want to belt a long, deep V neck sweater. And I want to learn how some people know which buttons to leave open and which ones to close. How does one develop those skills?

Also, it makes you look super busy when you scrunch up the sleeves while your working on something. See how hard I'm working? I had to squish my sleeves up! And you know I love anything that makes it look like I'm working harder than I actually am.

I went on a bit of a spree and bought a purple one from Old Navy and a green and pink ones from Target within the last couple of weeks. And with a new H & M opening up this week in town, my closet may really start to fill up with cheap sweaters. I really want to find one with some get embellishments around the collar. It'll be like sewn-in jewelry. This is how I wore the green one today.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Bucket List (Part I)

I'd like to get it up to 100 things, but it turns out it's really hard to think these up! So, I'll start with 50 things and work from there. The ones in italics are the ones I've done (I've been working on writing this list for a while.) In no particular order:
  1. Paint a colorful room (12/28/2011)
  2. Learn how to use a sewing machine
  3. Visit New York City (9/19/2011)
  4. Go back to Paris
  5. See the Northern Lights
  6. Have a kid
  7. Have a dog
  8. Have a cat (5/22/2012 & 8/6/2012)
  9. Plant an herb garden
  10. Complete an obstacle course
  11. Go camping
  12. Run the Saguaro National Park Labor Day 8 mile run
  13. Learn to knit
  14. Get a manicure
  15. Sing karaoke
  16. Visit Santorini
  17. Get a promotion
  18. Have 100 followers
  19. Ride on an overnight train
  20. Go to a Vegas show
  21. Snorkel
  22. Donate to Locks of Love (3/20/2014)
  23. Wear face paint to a football game
  24. Read a novel on a beach
  25. Attend a show taping
  26. Knee someone in the crotch 
  27. Dress up in costume to a midnight movie premiere 
  28. Ride in a hot-air balloon
  29. Attend the Lantern Festival in Taiwan
  30. Ride on a speedboat
  31. Swim in the ocean
  32. River raft
  33. Go on a cruise
  34. Ride a mechanical bull
  35. Try Zorbing
  36. Fly first class (Business class is close enough, 10/21/2011)
  37. Do Henna
  38. Drive stick (I've been taught, but I haven't driven stick alone on the road)
  39. Earn money from blogging
  40. Visit the house my grandmother grew up in Montevideo
  41. Be a bridesmaid
  42. Sit on an airplane next to someone famous
  43. Write a cookbook
  44. Hold an orangutan
  45. Get six pack abs
  46. Ride on a motorcycle
  47. Plant a sycamore tree
  48. Get food delivered to the new house (My parents house was so far out in the boonies that delivery guys could never find it and pizza was ALWAYS cold)
  49. Bake cookies for ALL my coworkers (My office, the lab, the model shop, etc.)
  50. Wear a fake mustache for a day

Status: 5/50

They got a little random at the end, but that's what makes the list mine.

    Wednesday, October 19, 2011

    To Put it in Words

    I was reading an article about being dumped because the guy was looking for "bliss" and she didn't understand what that meant. I know. I've been trying to describe it for years and I finally figured it out today.

         Bliss is the feeling in a relationship when you strip away all the
         effort. When you aren't arguing about something, when one of 
         you isn't trying to seduce the other, and you can just sit on the 
         floor, eating mac and cheese, watching a rerun of "Everybody 
         Loves Raymond". You aren't worried about anything, you're just
         happy and you're together. It's the happy feeling you have when 
         you aren't actually thinking or feeling anything in particular. 

    Here's hoping everyone else knows what I'm talking about.

    Tuesday, October 18, 2011

    I Consider Myself More of a Dweeb

    Can you count the number of reasons this is blasphemous?

    "This is how you upset every nerd on the planet"

    Monday, October 17, 2011

    Project House Update: Hallway

    While I love our new house, it hasn't been updated since the original owners built it in 1983. Old appliances, carpeting in EVERY room (bathrooms and kitchen included), and paint that they didn't bother to touch up when they moved out.

    The house is entirely liveable, but everything needs to be redone eventually. The difficult part was determining where to start. We finally decided on the hallway. We could start by just painting it to cover the dozens of holes from the pictures that used to hang, updating the lighting, and doing something about the ugly decorative molding.

     The Hallway, Before

    After a long weekend consisting of three trips to Home Depot, a last minute change of heart on some scones, finally talking my husband into painting the molding, and basically being soaked to the bone in paint, it is done! Hopefully, we will never have to do any major work in the hall again.

    The Hallway, After

    The biggest problem came from a spontaneous decision we made late in the first day of painting. I was doing the edges inside the linen closet and my husband said, "We could paint the inside of the closet whatever color we wanted. It could be any crazy color." It made sense and it seemed like something we would do. I let Dan pick out the color (poor guy doesn't get to make a lot of decisions with me around) and he picked Crimson Silk. 

     The Linen Closet, Before and After

    Four coats of paint later, it's still a little streaky, but since it's just housing towels, we're throwing in ours and calling it good.

    Sunday, October 16, 2011

    A Very Important Public Service Announcement

    When I was six, during a soccer game at recess, someone called me a "Ketchup Head". I know that was probably supposed to be insulting, but it just made me think they were an idiot for coming up with something as lame as "Ketchup Head".

    Well, Conan O'Brien and Elmo have now teamed up to stop moronic bullies like the one that tried to diss me way back in 1993.

    Saturday, October 15, 2011

    To Get a Little Political...

    I came across this reposted on a friend's Facebook wall, who knows who originally posted it, but I was instantly taken to this because this is me. This is me.

    I've never declared myself Democrat or Republican. I can be right-leaning on one issue and swing over to the left for the next one. My voter registration card states 'Independent'. I don't care what party you associate with, but I hope you can read what I'm about to write with an open mind.

    When I was seventeen, I spent a summer working at a family services organization. They offered a variety of types of charity to help quite a range of people and it was my job to filter and direct this gambit of people when they called to the appropriate help. During my three months there, I met some very nice people who were the victim of circumstance, worked very hard to overcome it, and were very grateful for not only the help that was available but also to feel like they weren't alone. However, on the flip side, I met a lot of people who were not the victim of circumstance. They weren't really victims at all, they just wanted to see if we could make their lives easier. They were rude and horrible to me when I would screen them out. Do you think it's really fair to drive to our office in your own car and yell at the seventeen year old girl behind the desk about the fact that the discount apartments we had were not far enough on the west side of town for you? I'm sorry. Let me hang up on the abused pregnant 19 year old on the phone so we can try to find you a cheaper apartment. Since then, I am very skeptical of people who think they are deserving of help. Those who are deserving of help never think that they are.

    My senior year of high school, I needed two classes to graduate. I took seven, all of them AP. I applied for just about every scholarship I could. I went to an in-state school on full scholarship. Besides my parents covering textbooks, I never asked them to help me pay for school. I lived at home rather than the dorms. I worked jobs grading papers. I finally moved out my senior year to a hole in the wall apartment straight out of the 70's with a roommate. No air conditioning, no internet, no cable. Due to my hard work in high school, I loaded up my last semester with graduate level classes. I was able to get my masters a semester early. I graduated debt-free and with enough money in the bank to start saving for the downpayment on my house.

    Every day on campus, I would walk behind someone complaining to their friends on a smart phone, with a Coach purse holding their laptop, hair dyed and nails done, drinking a Starbucks, bitching about how they didn't have enough money and their parents weren't helping them enough.

    When I was in New York a couple of weeks ago, I accidentally walked through the Occupy Wallstreet protesters at the beginning of their campaign. You wouldn't have know they were protesters unless someone had told you. One of them was wearing a hula skirt and playing a ukulele and several of them were hula-hooping. I still couldn't tell you what their end game is. What do they want? Do they want to take over Wallstreet? Do they want to get rid of stocks? Do they want to socialize the stock market? Do they want the brokers to give them jobs? Who knows?

    I know that I have been very lucky to be raised with the luxuries I had and that life has been good to me, but I've also worked hard to make the most of it. I have no pity for these protesters. Move to a less expensive city. Apply for jobs unrelated to communications or art history or women's studies. Realize that when you are unemployed, no job is beneath you. Cut off cable. Paint your own nails. Don't buy a house you can't really afford.

    And most importantly, stop feeling so entitled. Get off your ass and earn it. The opportunity is there and it's not Wallstreet's fault you aren't taking it.

    Friday, October 14, 2011

    Fan of Friday: Week of 10/14/2011

    You know the rant I gave yesterday about my frustration with the internet? Well, I've been on the hunt for great blogs since then and I stumbled across an awesome one: The Concerns of Mindy Kaling.

    Mindy Kaling is awesome. She is my favorite character on "The Office", one half of one of my guilty pleasures, Subtle Sexuality, and the only redeeming thing about "No Strings Attached" (well, I can only imagine since I'm not desperate enough to see that stinker).

    A couple of years ago, Mindy started a blog called "Things I've Bought that I Love", written during breaks on set. It's basically her talking about stuff she likes and the anecdotes that go with it. Simple, yet genius.

    Well, she's rolled that same vibe into her new blog while focusing slightly less on the purchases and more so on the stories. It's so well written and clever and I like to think that if I comment on her blog, it's kind of like I've actually met her. Ohhhhh, so now I finally understand why people like Twitter so much.

    Best part? She's a frequent poster. I can't tell you how much it bugs me to find a great blog and they post like three times a month. (I'm doing better on the frequency, now if I could only improve the content...)

    Anyway, give it a once over and I promise you'll be just as addicted as I am.

    Thursday, October 13, 2011

    I'm Sick of the Internet

    There. I said it. It's probably blasphemous to say that on a blog, but it's really starting to get under my skin. It seems like a rapidly increasing percentage of the websites and blogs I frequent have become too self-centered. Too self-aware.

    For example, one website I visit has just become a big clique. Bow down to the girls in charge or you will get torn apart. Post after post from these writers in New York City has narrowed from being about feminism, beauty, entertainment, and relationships to tales of their dating history, the Occupy Wallstreet protesters, obscure runway fashion, and the bad decisions they are currently making (but of course, they don't realize that they are bad decisions.) They don't seem to realize that most the people reading their website are not writers. We work real jobs where leggings are not a good decision and coming in hungover doesn't make you look cool. I used to read their articles because they were filled with good advice and galleries. Now, they've revealed so much about
    themselves and their decisions, no one in their right mind
    should ever listen to them.

    Another part of the problem is also that there is no polite way to debate or critique on the internet. All syntax and emotion is lost so it's always perceived in the most negative light. If you post a picture on your blog of what you're wearing that day and someone comments "You might want to reconsider that dress. It makes you look pregnant.", why can't you see that they are NOT saying you look pregnant? They are saying the dress probably isn't the best choice for you. Period. No comment war necessary.

    A lot of websites have removed their "dislike" feature and I think that bugs me more than anything. If I don't agree with someone, I should be able to hit the little thumbs down button and move on. Without it, at least on the cliquey websites, if you refute someone's comment, the rest of the brainwashed zombies attacks and no one comes to the rescue. I don't comment on those websites anymore. Just not worth it. I'm all for positivity and politeness online but if you write a crappy article, I should have the right to tell you I think it sucks (you know, in a polite and specific way, not just "You suck!").

    One of my favorite blogs recently took down it's thumbs down and starting banning people who were deemed "mean". No definition of "mean" was ever given. Most of the people who were banned were not the mean ones; they were just the ones who disagreed with the blogger and were not her personal friends. That's fine. I won't comment anymore out of fear of being banned (my comments were never mean, by the way, but if I don't agree, I'll say so), but scaring people away isn't the greatest way to generate hits.

    Maybe the problem I'm having is that I just need to find new websites. It's hard to cut one out without having another to replace it. So if anyone knows of some good ones, please let me know. If this rant proves anything, it's that I'm kind of desperate.

    Wednesday, October 12, 2011

    You would tell me, right?

    There's been a funny smell in my cubicle for days now. I've opened every drawer, sniffed every trash can, tossed anything odorous I can find, but it still remains. All hope that I accidentally let something rot over the weekend has quickly gone out the window.

    I sat through it in silence the first day, hoping it would have dissipated by Tuesday. But this morning, it was as strong as ever. I started to bug my coworkers about it it, but none of them claim to be able to smell it.

    I'm starting to think it's me. Do I smell? If I smelled, would you tell me? Or maybe I'm just going crazy and smelling things that aren't there. Or maybe, MAYBE, I'm developing mutant super smell. Yeah, let's go with that one.

    (I don't know this baby, but she seems like someone I would be related to. I just hope I have kids who are this cool and this weird.)

    Tuesday, October 11, 2011

    Style Tips for Working with Men

    As I mention frequently here, I am basically the lone female at my work. Not that I mind working with men, but it can definitely make me feel like an outsider at times.

    But more importantly, it's a lot easier to learn about male behavior and how they view women when you're working in a sea of them. While I could probably write dozens of posts about what I've learned about men by working with so many of them, I'll start with this: fashion and style. 

    Over the last couple of weeks, I've been experimenting with some different looks and taking notice of the reactions of my coworkers. While I have received several compliments and comments on my outfits, most of my tips come from observing their behavior around me and dissecting their own style choices.
    • Skirts confuse men. Most men associate skirts and dresses with women dressing up. No matter how casual the skirt or dress, be prepared to answer the age-old question, "Why are you so dressed up?" (Depending on who's asking, the easiest reply is that you are all dressed up for them). I'm not saying you shouldn't wear skirts if you have male coworkers, but skirts make it more obvious to men that you are, in fact, a woman.
    • No open-toed shoes. First of all, no matter how casual your work environment is, NEVER NEVER NEVER wear flip-flops to work. Now that that's out of the way, men are pretty unobservant when it comes to fashion. Do you think most of them see a difference between flip-flops and sandals? Nope, sandals are just fancy flip-flops so take them off the work wardrobe list. Secondly, no matter how trendy, what is the point of peep-toed shoes? The only thing I could possibly think of is to show off a bit of a pedicure. Just to be safe, don't wear anything that shows off toes because it either seems casual or ridiculous.
    • If you want to wear something tight, make sure everything you're wearing isn't tight. If you wear both a tight top and tight pants, you just end up looking trashy. And count low-cut as tight just to be safe. 
    • Tuck in your shirt if possible. If your shirt is long enough to stay tucked in all day, tuck it in. However, if it comes undone the minute you sit down, don't worry about it. It will look more unprofessional to keep pulling and tucking it all day rather than just leaving it untucked.
    • Bold lipstick is a bad idea. Unless you are one of the rare people who can manage to keep it on all day, go for a more subtle look. That way no one will notice when it smudges off, or worse, smudges on your face.
    • No matter the styling and accessories, a plain t-shirt isn't acceptable. This one has some caveats to it. I'm not saying you should wear only graphic tees. No matter what the rest of the outfit looks like, an uncovered plain t-shirt doesn't work. I've worn solid colored tees with jeans, slacks, a variety of skirts, brooches, statement necklaces, you name it. Men just see it and think casual. The best way to incorporate them is with layering. They are fine under vests, sweaters, other blouses, and blazers, just not alone. If you choose to try to style one uncovered, it's probably best to try on a Friday.
    • Men think women wobble in heels. They can be your most comfortable pair of heels. Maybe you can walk better in them than in flats, but men underestimate heels. Don't let that translate into them underestimating you. Unless you are 100% confident in a pair, try breaking them in on date night, rather than at work.
    • Have a signature style. Look around at your male coworkers. They're kind of like cartoon characters; you'd expect to open their closets and see twenty of the same outfit. My manager always wears a t-shirt, shorts, a ball cap, and sneakers. My mentor always wears a polo and jeans. My project leader always wears a long-sleeved button-up with slacks. My dad always wear a short-sleeved button-up with jeans. Men have a signature look and stick to it. Usually out of laziness, but for the most part, they don't play with fashion. I'm not saying you should play with it because determining a work look is very difficult and will require some experimenting. but keep the outfits that may be out of character to the weekends until you're sure it could be a safe look for work.
      Hopefully this helped to better understand the creatures around you and blend in/stand out when you need it most.

      Saturday, October 8, 2011

      The Reunion I Enjoyed Most

      Entertainment Weekly has been reunited casts from movies and television for their latest issue. While I've been looking forward to it, mainly for the Princess Bride reunion, the pictures I enjoyed the most are actually from the Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion reunion (reunion reunion...).

      Image Courtesy of Entertainment Weekly

      First of all, how random is it to reunite them? Not that I'm complaining, but it is definitely random.

      Secondly, it picture is awesome! Whoever came up with the Post-It idea is an absolute genius. And if you don't know what I'm talking about, well, you best go rent the movie. Rent it! Right now!

      Or, if you're actually living in this decade, queue it on Netflix...

      Friday, October 7, 2011

      Fan of Friday: Week of 10/7/2011

      This week, I am loving one thing in particular: fall.

      Fall in Tucson is something different than the rest of the country. Our trees' leaves don't change color and fall off. They stay small and green all year long. The flowers still bloom. The sun still shines for at least twelve hours every day. The only way you would know it's fall rather than any other season is the sense of relief in the air.

      It's no longer a bajillion degrees outside. My hands don't receive second degree burns from the steering wheel on the drive home from work. I can walk in the sun without becoming an instant sunburn. The air conditioner isn't constantly running, finally utilizing the thermostat.

      And things actually happen around town! October is always my busiest month because the city has only a few brief weeks between the heat and the cold (Damn you desert climate!) so the town comes alive.

      Image Courtesy of Tucson Real Estate Blog

      Here's the things I'm looking forward to this month:
      • Tucson Meet Yourself. It's a weekend full of cultural music and dancing and all the great street food you can buy. Dan and I usually try to eat from as many countries as possible, eating in courses and shifts to not fill up.
      • Black raspberry Eegee's.
      • Apple Annie's for apple picking, pie eating, cider chugging, and produce picking. We always end up with waaaaay too many apples and eggplant.
      • U of A football games, assuming there are any tickets left, but with the way they are playing this year, there have to be hundreds, if not thousands, of tickets left.
      • Tucson Zombie Walk. I haven't been before, but if I can get over my zombie fear, maybe I can manage.
      • Halloween on 4th Avenue, mainly for the people watching. What slutty version of something should I be this year?
       I love this time of year!

      Thursday, October 6, 2011

      Running from Adulthood

      At what point are you an adult? I'm 24 years old, married, with a full time job and a house in my name, and I still can't grasp that I may, in fact, be a grown-up.

      Last night may have been the tipping point. We went to Sears and shopped for a washer and a dryer. How boring is that? It's like the last thing you actually want to buy. It costs a lot of money, and yes, it makes your life easier, but there's absolutely no fun to it. Is it odd that I feel like this washer and dryer will be the defining point between two chapters in my life? Maybe I'm wrong because I also feel like you can't see defining moments coming; they can only be identified in hindsight.

      I can't say I was excited about buying them (you're definitely an adult if you got excited by them), but it will be a relief to not have to lug laundry over to my parent's house every weekend. I didn't mind it in college because my apartment complex didn't have any, but there is just something wrong about seeing your mom help you fold laundry and she comes across a pair of your husband's underwear. Ehh...

      Did you know that a good washer can cost $1000? That's crazy! And did you know that washers and dryers have like a million features? Steaming, foaming, touch screen, dryness sensing. It's ridiculous! I just want a white, front loading, large capacity washer and dryer. Cut the features and cut the price, for heaven's sake!

      Anyway, these are the ones we're considering. It'll only cost us $1664.98...


      But look how futuristic! It's like a portal into space!

      Wednesday, October 5, 2011

      My Ideal Kitty

      I know this one's an oldie, but a goodie.

      This kitty is everything I want in a future kitty: he makes weird noises, doesn't freak out because he's got a collar on, eats grass, and is just plain insane.

      Then again, I think any kitty I have will eventually go insane.

      Tuesday, October 4, 2011

      I Know Who the Mother is on "How I Met Your Mother"!

      I'm not kidding! I figured it out! And I'm blogging about it for two reasons. First, when the mother is finally revealed, I can go, "IN YOUR FACE!" because I will totally be right. And secondly, so you can marvel at my awesomeness for figuring it out.

      So, just as a warning, spoilers ahoy!

      I am a huge fan of HIMYM. I was excited to watch the pilot when it first aired, I have seen every episode since, own all the DVD sets, and it is undoubtedly my favorite show (and you know how I love my TV).

      In the last moments of the pilot, it is revealed, "and that's how I met your Aunt Robin." In that instant, my first theory as to who the mother is was born: it's Robin's sister. I adamantly believed that the title of "Aunt" for Robin wasn't just a title. I thought that she must actually be somehow related to the kids and that meant the mother must be somehow related to Robin. I thought the title of aunt and uncle for Lily, Marshall, and Barney was a decoy. Marshall only has brothers so no mother there. I think it was mentioned once that Lily had a sister, but I'd have to imagine that Ted had met her already. And Barney just has a gay, married, black brother so that didn't add up either. It had to be Robin.

      In Season 2, we met Robin's sister and my theory went out the window. I stopped focusing on my related theory and just sat back and enjoyed the show.

      Over the next couple of seasons, we didn't learn that much that tied the mother to the group. We learned who she wasn't, that she had a yellow umbrella, and that she was at the same St. Patrick's Day party as Ted.

      In Season 5, she becomes a little more concrete. We know she's a college student because she was in Ted's accidental first class when he got the building number wrong.

      Season 6 is when things really start to develop. Between the season premiere and the season finale, we learn that Ted meets her at Barney's wedding. This means she has ties to Barney or his yet to be identified bride.

      With that amount of information, she could be virtually anyone. The key to the mystery actually comes on the DVD set for Season 6. The DVD set features a bonus on Disc 3 called, "What we know about the mother". At first, it's fairly straightforward. We know it's not Victoria, Robin, or Stella. We know she's Cindy's roommate. Then, they show the joke from the Season 6 finale when Ted accidentally gives an orchid to a girl in a coffee shop, says she's the mother, then calls "Psych!".

      And you expect it to end. But it doesn't! It cuts to a girl whose face is blocked by a yellow umbrella and Narrator Ted explains how the mother wouldn't have liked the orchid. Her favorite flowers are lilacs and Ted was lucky enough to give her lilacs on the day they met.

      Why would Ted give her lilacs on the day they met, you ask? Well, we know Ted meets her at Barney's wedding, where Ted is the best man. The only reason you would give someone flowers at a wedding is if she was in the wedding party holding a bouquet or she was close family and got a corsage. And if you look at scenes from Ted calming Barney down before his wedding, you can see lilac in their boutonnieres! Lilacs must be one of the wedding flowers!

      Rise! Rise my theory that she actually is related somehow! If she were related, it would make sense for her to be a bridesmaid or just to get a corsage (at my wedding, the close relatives got corsages). The only problem with this theory is how is she related? My original guess was that the bride was Robin and we find out that she has a half sister, fathered by her cheating father. We've already learned that Robin's dad had some mistresses in his past so it could fit.

      But this theory didn't sit well with me. It just didn't fit well with the tone of the show. However, a miracle happened in the middle of the night and I solved it.

      You ready?

      The mother is Barney's half-sister! Jerry's daughter!

      It all adds up! We know she's away at college when Barney meets the rest of the family, Columbia perhaps? (I tried to find a clip of her description, but failed.) It would make sense for her to be at the wedding. It would make sense as to why Ted doesn't meet her until then because Barney only found out about her a couple of months ago.

      I still believe that Robin is the bride, too. It would tie everything together well. It would be a great reason why the series started with Ted meeting Robin. If Ted hadn't met Robin, Barney wouldn't have met her, they wouldn't have gotten married, and Ted wouldn't have met the mother at their wedding.

      So try to disprove me. I dare you! But trust me, when the series does finally end, if it ends how I'm calling it, you will never hear the end of it from me.