Monday, December 21, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I've listened to it about twenty thousand times in the past three days.
"I don't love you, but I always will."
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Monday, November 2, 2009
That's right. Nada. And it was fantastic.
I stayed in my pajamas all day long eating good food, drinking coffee, snuggling with Gilbert, and watching my favorite scary movies. I tend to watch scary movies by myself most of the time, anyway - all of my friends are big scaredy-cats.
My hands-down, favorite scary movie is this:
I saw it for the first time when I was nine years old, and it scared the pants off of me. I can remember watching it through my fingers and nuzzling into my mom's shoulder, but so fascinated by it that I had to watch the whole thing. And 20 years later, it still gets me.
It's a wonderfully (non-bloody, which is a bonus point right there) creepy ghost story, mixed in with this great 1960's small town in the fall nostalgia - it's even really funny at times. Lukas Haas (the perfect quintessential child of 80's movies - Witness, etc.) plays the main character perfectly - his big wide eyes suck you in and make you feel the terror he feels.
Ah...makes me shudder just thinking about it now.
I just looked on Amazon and saw that they've released a Director's Cut DVD, so I think I'm going to plunk down the money for it soon.
Halloween's over, but I think everyone should go rent this one. Tonight. Watch it with someone you can nuzzle into. Watching through your fingers is optional.
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
I went to a conference with some friends a few weeks ago, and one of the speakers mentioned that he'd just gotten a tattoo, and held up his arm to show a cute design involving his kids' names.
And I got the itch to get a new one.
Now I'm not crazy about the whole arm-sleeve tattoo look. I don't want to look like my name is Bertha and I drive a Harley and play lots of hard-core softball. I'm pretty girly. I want one the inside of my right wrist.
A small one.
The two things I love most in the world are music and writing. I've got the music tattoo covered.
I'd like to get something in tribute of my other favorite hobby, so here's what I'm thinking - this, this word:
Very small. Very easily covered up by a bracelet or a watch.
What do you guys think?
Song I'm digging today: "2-1 (Instrumental)" by Imogen Heap
I really can't convey how obsessed I am with this CD. Well, with anything by Imogen Heap. She really is my very favorite singer, hands-down. And I'm so, so excited because Ashleigh and I are going to see her next month in Nashville!
I've had this CD in my car since it came out, and I still haven't gotten remotely tired of it. It's just that good.
I bought the special edition album, and it came with a bonus CD of instrumental tracks. While I love, love, love the original song "2-1" with vocals, this version is just as impressive. When the violin starts soaring over the piano, I get chills.
Monday, October 26, 2009
Joe and I sang Michael Jackson and Run DMC songs all the way up, and then when we got there, Zach, the owner, gave us some yummy cheesy biscuits to eat while we set up our equipment. My mom, Holly Jo, and Ashleigh were already there, and they helped me make sure my music was in order and set up a camcorder to capture the event on film. I had to pretend it wasn't there while I was singing - I get weirded out by cameras, which is not good when your sister is a photographer (the camera is always, always out).
We started out with "Chocolate," and all was well until we started playing "Fix You" and realized that for some reason, my microphone was causing Joe's guitar to not pick up. It took us a little bit of time to fix that (no pun intended), but everyone was really cool about it.
I even got to sing some songs with Holly Jo, and I loved that.
My friends Aaron, Sara, Floyd, Linda, and Ben came, and some friends of Joe's that I'd never met before traveled up, too. It made us both feel pretty special that our friends showed up to support us like that.
I definitely can't wait to do it again.
Song I'm digging today: "Sleep Spent" by Death Cab for Cutie
I really dig Ben Gibbard's poetry and electronic meets soulful singer/songwriter vibe with the music he writes for Death Cab for Cutie.
I love the slowness of this song and how it allows the lyrics to shine.
Best line: "I can't expel the truth/It's much more than I thought I could do/And with time, my worth will stain/And split your heart from my name..."
Thursday, October 22, 2009
I'm pretty excited. My friend Joe has been nice enough to offer to play guitar with me, and I'll be singing and playing piano. My little sister Holly Jo is also coming to sing some backup with me. Last night at practice, Joe said "You know...you're not a depressing person at all...but your musical choices sure are!"
And I started looking at our set list, and sure enough - they are slightly depressing songs. Lots of Ingrid Michaelson, some Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, KT Tunstall...my favorite sort of songs. But they are a little gloomy.
So we decided to throw some fun songs into the mix - we're doing "The Whole Wide World" by Wreckless Eric (for those of you who loved "Stranger Than Fiction" as much as I did, you'll know that one!), and "Chocolate" by Snow Patrol. We might even break out some "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun."
So - here's our set list - you guys tell me what you think!
"Chocolate" - Snow Patrol
"Dream" - Priscilla Ahn
"Speeding Cars" - Imogen Heap
"Fix You" - Coldplay
"You Just Forgot" - Mindy Smith
"Better" - Regina Spektor
"Burgundy Shoes" - Patty Griffin
"Daydream Believer" - The Monkees
"Waste" - Phish
"The Whole Wide World" - Wreckless Eric (Joe's taking the lead on this one)
"Maybe" - Ingrid Michaelson
"Oh, What a Day" - Ingrid Michaelson
"Use Somebody" - Kings of Leon
"The Chain" - Ingrid Michaelson
"Under My Bed" - Meiko
"Keep Breathing" - Ingrid Michaelson
"Closer" - Jars of Clay
"Colorblind" - Counting Crows
"Falling Slowly" - Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova
"The Promise" - When in Rome
"1234" - Feist
"With or Without You" - U2
"Bicycle Tricycle" - Rosie Thomas
"If You Could Read My Mind" - Gordon Lightfoot
"Other Side of the World" - KT Tunstall
"Under the Weather" - KT Tunstall
"Boys with Girlfriends" - Meiko
"Boats and Birds" - Gregory and the Hawk
"Hummingbird" - Kris Delmhorst
"Take It Down" - The Wailin' Jennys
"Cannonball" - Damien Rice
"One" - U2
I know. It's a lot. However, I have to sing from 6:30 to 9 (with one 15 minute break), so it takes a lot of songs to fill up two hours. I'm also going to throw in some originals.
I'll let you know how it goes!
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
But I'm ok with that.
Best line: "Never was a cornflake girl/Thought that was a good solution/Hangin' with the raisin girls..."
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
and who you're pretty sure is not that into you.
And you want to stop liking this person, because that would be much easier. But you can't. Because he's charming. And cute, with little wire-rimmed glasses and a crooked smile. And funny.
And you want to stop being awkward. But you can't. Because you're you (although inside, you know that you're absolutely, positively NOT this weird). And the more you try to stop being Awkward You, the more awkward you become.
And then you drive home and replay in your mind all the awkwardly weird things you said. And then you tell yourself "NEXT time I see him, I will be totally cool and laid back." But you never are.
It's bad when you are annoyed at yourself because you're being yourself.
P.S. Yep. New Piano Guy is giving me some "not so much" signals lately. I'm sure I'll feel better tomorrow, but right now - I just want to crawl under my covers and mope. So that's what I'm going to do.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
And how cute is this hairclip?
I like that you can clip it on anywhere, too:
A girl can dream.
This CD (along with Imogen Heap's newest, Ellipse) has been in my car CD player since the day it came out. I'm a little obsessed.
It's quirky, it's romantic, it's sad - It's. Just. Wonderful.
I love that this song references The Wizard of Oz with the angry apple trees, and the "bah-da-dah"s at the end are so, so catchy. I have to sing and play the piano on the steering wheel whenever it comes on.
Best line: "Like an angry apple tree/I throw my apples if you get too close to me..."
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Unfortunately, I made the mistake of returning the big family question and he immediately got very sober on me and said, "I did...until my sister died two years ago." Cue Debbie Downer music. After that, we didn't talk any more and the only sound was the weird gurgling in his stomach.
It got a little better by the time we got to the table. I found out that he had worked for a summer at the hotel in Colorado that was the inspiration for The Shining by Stephen King (one of my favorite books and movies), so that was pretty interesting. We have a love of animals in common (both of us have a cat).
Then I realized it. He had massive, violent ED. Explosive Diarrhea. On a first date.
I just sat there. It was like being in a horror movie and I'd decided to run upstairs instead of out the front door.
And then came the most awful moment - he went to pay for the meal, and the waitress came back and said in low, guilty tones, "Sir...our computer...isn't accepting your credit card."
We walked to the parking lot and I kept trying to signal with my eyes that hey, the bathroom is back that way. But he seemed determined to hold it in until he had reached the safety of his own bathroom.
Because, you know. Diarrhea.
Thursday, September 3, 2009
I'm not a big fan of blind dates - I had one a few years ago that turned out to be a disaster (let's just say that scary devil tattoos and crawfish were involved), so I'm a little cynical.
I have a feeling it's not going to go well, for a couple of reasons:
1. He's 12 years older than me. Granted, I'm pretty open-minded about age gaps. Some of the happiest married couples I know have a good many years between them. But 20's (me) and 40's (him) could be awkward.
2. He's a pretty radically different religious denomination than I am - as in, his church doesn't believe that women should wear jewelry. Or that anyone should go to the movies. Or eat meat. Or listen to non-Christian music. So I'm pretty sure this guy will think my real name is Jezebel. Ashleigh and Holly told me to show up wearing big flashy earrings, order a steak, and suggest a movie after dinner to see if that scares him off. Hmmm...
3. I still like New Piano Guy. A lot. I'm trying to reign myself in on that one - I'm so awful about falling way too hard, way too fast. I've always been that way, and I know I set myself up for heartbreak after heartbreak, but I can't seem to help it. I know I'll compare Mr. Blind Date to NPG, and I have a feeling he's going to come up short.
So. Any advice, dear blogging friends? Should I actually go on this date or call and cancel? I'm sort of on the fence about the whole thing.
Song I'm digging today: "Make Someone Happy" by Jimmy Durante
Ah. Classic good mood song.
I feel like I should be living in New York City, eating in little cafes with a cute Tom Hanks-type guy, and wearing a yellow dress with a flower in my hair every time this song pops up on my mp3 player.
Best line: "Make just one heart the heart you sing to/One smile that cheers you/One face that lights when it nears you..."
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
I'm not "my glass is half-full" optimistic. I need a refill.
I have the blahs.
Nothing particularly bad or upsetting has occurred in the past couple of days - do you ever have days where you just feel like the world is just a little bit duller than it was yesterday? Like maybe THIS is as good as things will ever get, and that's not a good thing?
That's how I'm feeling today.
So I'm just going to listen to depressing music (oddly enough, that makes me feel better - I can't bear happy-go-lucky tunes when I just don't feel that way myself), maybe go to the vending machine and get a calorie-filled Coke, eat my peanut butter and jelly sandwich, and sit in my office and grunt. Just like Harry in "When Harry Met Sally...".
Song I'm digging today: "Caught a Lite Sneeze" by Tori Amos
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom.
And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. - 2 Corinthians 3:17-18
It's comforting to know that no matter how lousy I feel about myself sometimes - and I've had some lousy-feeling days this week - God is continually transforming me into a better version of myself - a version that is closer to who I really am in Him.
It really is a cheerful thought.
Song I'm digging today: "Matinee" by Hurts to Purr
This song is so perfect. I mean it - perfect. I love to go to the movies by myself - it's the perfect escape from the real world. I can eat all the sugary candy and buttery popcorn that I want without any disapproving eyes. I can watch a sappy love story and swoon over the cheesy dialogue without having to justify it.
But I don't think I could have written a better song about the feeling of losing yourself in a great movie and also tie it into the uncertainty of new love at the same time.
I never post entire lyrics to a song, but seriously - I couldn't pick out a "best line" from this one. The whole song is amazing. Plus, the lead singer's Ingrid Michaelson meets Doris Day voice just makes it even better:
"It’s a perfect day for a matinee
The rain falling
It’s a perfect day for a matinee
And I’m calling in sick
So I can lose myself in a dark room
With two old ladies laughing when I do
And the ushers are watching, too
It’s a perfect day for a matinee
And I think I love you
It’s a perfect day for a matinee
And I’m hoping you love me too
Hoping so hard that I need to escape
And calm down my heart to a regular pace
But I miss your hand on my knee
What a wonderful way
It’s a perfect day for a matinee
And I leave the theater, it’s light out, it’s light out
It’s a perfect day for a matinee
And I’ll call you later, tell you what the movie was about
And you’ll laugh and ask why I went alone
And I’ll lie and say I thought everybody’d already seen that one
But you would have gone
You would have gone
Oh you would have, you would have gone"
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Nope - it's not Piano Man. Piano Man turned out to be a dud with a secret girlfriend that he doesn't mind cheating on, and I will not be "that girl."
This is actually a new piano student, and he's funny, tall (love that! I'm 6 ft., so feeling short next to someone is a new and pretty awesome thing), and best - he's as awkward at flirting as I am. But we're managing to do it.
I've found myself listening to every sappy love song on the radio and thinking "Ah...beautiful! Gorgeous! Wish you were here!" (Yep - definitely a "French Kiss" reference there.)
I'm trying new hairstyles.
Making sure my apartment is spotless, because you never know - he might want to come over.
Wanting to cook more.
Singing in the shower, in the car (well, I always do that), humming in line at Publix, at the bank, at work (I'm sure I'm driving everyone nuts with that - sorry, friends).
Getting excited when I hear his ringtone on my phone or getting that thrill when I get a text from him. Calling Ashleigh and Holly Jo to make sure I don't say something stupid in my reply.
Having in-depth conversations with Ashleigh and Holly Jo about what was said, what looks were exchanged, what was I wearing? What was he wearing?
It's like being in 8th grade again. But it's so, so much fun.
Song I'm digging today: "Falling for You" by Colbie Caillat
In honor of today's post - I am a little obsessed with this song at the moment. I just keep hearing it on the radio, and it just makes me happy. Caillat has this knack of hitting exactly the right vibe with all of her songs - and this completely captures that heady new crush feeling.
Best line: "I can't stop thinking about it/I want you all around me/And now I just can't hide it/I think I'm falling for you..."
Monday, June 29, 2009
I have actually now gone a whole week without spending money in a restaurant. I've just been eating whatever is in my kitchen (which turned out to be more than I thought - I found an entire case of Chef Boyardee after unpacking the last box labeled "kitchen"). It can be done. And I have discovered a new love for an old favorite:
I'm a huge fan of Death Cab for Cutie, so this collaboration between Death Cab's Ben Gibbard and Jimmy Tamborello is right up my alley. It's pretty much DCfC with a little techno influence - sort of the male version of Imogen Heap. And I love that Jenny Lewis makes some appearances, too.
This song basically sums up how it feels when you realize that the long distance relationship you've been nurturing is falling apart, and your significant other has a completely different life apart from you. And you just don't fit into their plans anymore. Tear.
I love the background vocals singing "Where...I...am..." It just nails the isolated feeling right on the head.
Best line: "You seem so out of context in this gaudy apartment complex/a stranger with your door key explaining that I am just visiting/And I am finally seeing why I was the one worth leaving..."
Monday, June 22, 2009
When I got there, Mom was pulling in and she had pizza from Pizza Hut (my dad's favorite) in her front seat. I'm normally a Papa John's gal, but I have to admit - sometimes there is nothing like an old-school slice of Pizza Hut pan pizza to bring you back to first grade and the whole "pizza is my favorite food. EVER." mentality. I helped her bring in the food, and as soon as I walked in the door, WHAM! - the girls attacked me. By girls, I mean my parents' new children - their three dogs, Honey (golden retriever), Max (Pomeranian/chow mix), and Lucy (Jack Russell Terrier).
We all piled up tv trays with pizza and breadsticks and settled in front of the tv for a movie of my dad's choice - he chose "Taken," with Liam Neeson. Ok. I didn't think I'd like this movie at all. I'm usually more of a quirky comedy-type movie person, but this movie is good. Like really good. So good that Holly Jo (my sister) and I started talking to the movie. Literally. As in "Oh, no. No, that's not good" and "He just DID that!" and "Don't do it...don't do it...Ok, he did it." (Also, on a random note - Holly Jo and I have discovered that every time we watch a movie together, we constantly look at each other for reactions to anything funny/romantic/sweet/sad/horrifying, etc. Friends have called this the Amanda and Holly Sister Movie-Watching Connection. I know we weird people out by constantly staring at each other during any movie/tv watching experience. We're sorry. It can't be helped.)
In the middle of the action, my dad looks at us and says "Of course, (insert one of the character's names - I won't ruin it for you guys) has been the bad guy all along - he's the one who was taking the money in exchange for - " at which point my mom interrupts with "John! They didn't know that!"
Claaaaaaassic Dad (if you saw Justin Timberlake's last SNL appearance, you'll get that reference).
After the movie, Alex (my brother-in-law) cut up watermelon for everyone but me - I hate all things melon - and distributed his famous homemade chocolate ice cream. Then we all went into the computer room to watch YouTube videos of old Steve Martin banjo-playing clips (he's so cute - I would totally marry him if he asked - and if he weren't already married).
Alex and Holly Jo left around 8:45, and then Mom and Dad and I plopped on the couch, ate some fresh strawberries (yes, more food) and watched "Father's Little Dividend," the original "Father of the Bride 2" with Spencer Tracy and Elizabeth Taylor. Very cute.
I would say that all in all, even though it was miserably hot outside - seriously miserable - it was the perfect summer day. I wish I had more time to just hang out with my family.
They're fun folks.
Song I'm digging today: "On the Radio" by Regina Spektor
I love, love, love Regina Spektor's quirky, sort-of Russian accent-y style of singing. Even her sadder songs sound a little happy. I can't listen to this song without singing the little "buh bada bada bahmb" part under my breath.
You just can't be in a bad mood after listening to this cd.
You can't. I dare you.
Best line: "On the radio/We heard 'November Rain'/That solo's awful long/but it's a pretty song/We listened to it twice/Because the DJ was asleep..."
Thursday, June 18, 2009
I decided to keep Gilbert (named after Gilbert Blythe from my favorite childhood book, Anne of Green Gables) - I've had him since he was just a little over five weeks old when his mom abandoned him on my aunt's front porch almost six years ago. Gilbert's always been a sort of loner cat. He's seemed really content to just hang out under the bed or on top of the couch (or once crawling up into a hole in the cabinets in my last apartment and inspiring a terrifying search by yours truly, who was convinced he had somehow managed to escape onto the crazy busy road outside), and very rarely much of a lap-cat. I've always known he loves me - he waits until I get home every night to eat dinner and always comes to rub appreciatively on my legs afterwards. But apart from an occasional cuddle, Gilbert's seemed to prefer "alone time."
This has happened every morning since then. At some point during the night, Gilbert jumps up on the bed and curls up next to me just like a little kid - he even manages to get under my arm so I'm actually cradling him. I know to those of you who read my blog and don't have pets, this must sound sort of nuts - but I'm LOVING it. I'm beginning to think that Gilbert isn't actually a loner cat - maybe he just missed having one-on-one time and had felt a little neglected.
That being said, I've always loved Alison Krauss. She has this completely other-worldly quality to her voice that always amazes me. I know if I ever met her, I'd scare her - mainly because I don't think I'd be able to form any other sentences than "I...just love you. So much."
This song, which I think is actually from the "Cold Mountain" (saddest movie EVER) soundtrack, reminds me of people sitting out on the front porch of old antebellum homes and drinking lemonade whilst (yes, whilst) fanning themselves and chatting about prohibition or something. Okay, maybe that's a bit too specific. But that's how this mind works, friends.
Best line: "I thought I heard a black bell toll/A little bird did sing/Man has no choice/When he wants everything"
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
I was really, pleasantly surprised with how much I enjoyed it - and how much I agreed with what it had to say.
Like almost everyone else in America, I devoured Donald Miller's Blue Like Jazz when it was first released, and even went to hear him speak twice. I had sort of convinced myself that we could be best friends. Sure, there were a few sections of his book that I disagreed with, but I had never read a book by such an engaging (young!) Christian before.
I was living in Nashville at the time that I first started reading Miller, and soon was caught up in the "new style" church. You know - coffee in the sanctuary, hymns replaced by U2 anthems (which I really do like - there are some killer U2 songs that I've always thought belonged in church), ridiculously good-looking praise band teams, but mostly - I was intrigued with the notion that it was okay (even encouraged) to pretty much abandon the stodgy sort of church I had grown up with and embrace this "we don't have all the answers, but we sure are asking the questions" type of Christianity.
After BLJ, I read Miller's other books and enjoyed them, even though there was a nagging voice in my head saying that I should re-think some of his views. Same thing with other emergent writers like Brian McLaren and Erwin McManus. Some of what they say pretty much blatantly disagrees with Scripture, even if it does sound cool and funny. As much as I wanted to jump on board with the emergent church (after all, their conversion rate is astounding - their approach to witnessing is bringing people in by the thousands. Maybe because they are so accepting. But I digress.), I couldn't shake my theological differences.
A few months ago I bought Velvet Elvis and Sex God by Rob Bell. And that's when my problems really began.
Don't get me wrong - I like Rob Bell. He's cool. He's laid-back. He tells a great story and makes me think about Christianity in a way I haven't before. I love the Nooma videos. But I felt like Velvet Elvis (especially) just asked a bunch of questions and gave no definitive answers. It made me feel like Bell and his posse wouldn't really like me or my friends and our need to know why. In almost every chapter Bell exhorts embracing mystery - mystery is what Christianity is about. It's all a mystery. It's okay to not know anything. Hmm.
And when he says things like this: "The Bible is open-ended. All we can do is tell people what we think the Bible means - give them our version" it makes me want to shout "What?" The Bible is open-ended? I'm pretty sure the Bible is pretty darn clear in what it says. Bell seems to think that most everyone (pre-2004 or so) who "interpreted" the Bible was misinformed and wrong. He even goes so far as to say that Scripture alone is a nice thought, "but it is not true."
I can't be cool with that.
As I was reading Why We're Not Emergent, I found myself thinking "Yes! That's what I meant!" over and over. All of the beefs I had with emergent leaders like Erwin McManus, Brian McLaren, Rob Bell, Leonard Sweet, and yes, even my dear Donald Miller, were expounded upon.
This book wasn't about bashing these men - in fact, DeYoung (a minister in East Lansing, MI - same town as Mars Hill, Bell's church) and Kluck (a former sports writer) actually affirm the good and true things that emergent leaders are preaching. But they don't shy away from taking issue with false teaching, and I admired that.
Here are some of the gems that I underlined while reading:
"None of us ever infinitely understands God in a neat package of affirmations, but we can know Him truly, both personally and propositionally."
"There is the possibility of certainty, because God has spoken to us clearly and intelligibly." YES. Because God is NOT the author of confusion, after all.
"In our world of perpetual squishitude, why offer people more of what they already have - vague spirituality, uncertainty, and borderline interpretative relativism? Why not offer them something hard and old like the Law in which we delight, and dare to say and believe 'Thus saith the Lord'?"
"Don't the 1,189 chapters in the Bible tell us lots of things about God that we are supposed to do more with than doubt?"
In answer to McLaren's ambiguous but obvious belief that God is a tolerant dad who wouldn't send anyone to hell if they're really, really good (seriously - he basically says this in his book The Church in Emerging Culture) and that any church that talks about hell is intolerant (and that seems to be a recurring complaint in emergent literature - intolerant! Intolerant! Villagers, light your torches!), DeYoung says "The early church was important because it was intolerable, and it was intolerable because it was intolerant. Not socially intolerant or coldhearted or obnoxiously abrasive, but intolerant of any salvation but the cross, any God but theirs, and any Lord but Christ." Booyah.
Ok. It's obvious I liked this book. Get it. Read it. Tell me what you think.
Song I'm digging today: "Colors" by Amos Lee
While I like almost every song on this CD, "Colors" is my favorite. It always makes me think of the terribly and wonderfully sad movie "Splendor in the Grass." I love the thought that when you're not with the person you love, the world is just a little bit grayer and everything is just a little sadder.
Best line: "Your mama called, she said that you're downstairs crying/Feeling like such a mess/Yeah, I hear you in the background bawling/What happened to your sweet summertime dress?"
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
About halfway through I got lazy and just started stuffing things in big black trashbags and carting them to my car. When I got back to my new kitchen, I started unloading the food from the bags and putting them into the fridge. I've had the same package of string cheese for about four months - I really don't like string cheese, but it's supposedly a healthy snack, and I try to fool myself into believing that I actually like it from time to time. Cheese takes forever to go bad, so I can't bring myself to throw it away. Waste not, want not and all that jazz. So I placed the cheese on the top shelf and continued putting kitchen items away.
I went to throw away the trashbags and felt something small in the bottom of one of them - one solitary string cheese had escaped its packaging.
The cheese stands alone.
I actually said it out loud (yes, sometimes I talk to myself) and then of course, I had to sing it. "The cheese stands alone...the cheese stands alone...hi-ho the dairy-oh, the cheese stands alone." It got me to thinking - what kind of sick twisted song is "The Farmer in the Dell"?
I can remember being in preschool, standing in a big circle of kids where one has been designated as the farmer - he chooses his wife, his various animals, kids, etc. - and then there's always one sucker. One kid left at the end who is The Cheese. The Cheese is then circled maliciously (or that's how it seems in my memory) while little screeching voices sing "The Cheese stands alone...The Cheese stands alone..."
And guess who was usually The Cheese when I was a kid? That's right, folks. Moi. I was The Cheese. I suppose it mainly had to do with the fact that I was usually the new kid, the one who hadn't been on play-dates with the others, etc., but it still smarted. The Farmer was always the cutest boy, The Wife was the prettiest girl, and The Cheese? Well. It didn't take a fourth grader to figure that out.
This is where it starts - it's just before the official name-calling, hair pulling, all-out bullying of elementary school and middle school. It's the precursor to the meanness of childhood. We learn early.
That or it could make a pretty good horror movie - "The Children of the Dell." All kids with white blonde hair and blue eyes and background music made up of those same children singing scary Latin music . And The Cheese, back for revenge.
Song I'm digging today: "Extraordinary" by Mandy Moore
Saturday, June 6, 2009
All day yesterday (and most of Thursday) involved packing and moving into my new sweet little cozy apartment - I really am delighted by how cute it's shaping up to be (pictures coming soon!). Thankfully, I had some really great friends and family show up to help me cart and lug everything out of the old apartment, down the street, and up two flights of stairs. Having had surgery two weeks ago, I'm still on the no-lifting over ten pounds ban, so if I'd had to do this all by myself, it would probably have been around August before I was settled in. So - Aaron, Alicia, Amy, Gregg, John, Kam, and Pam - holla! You're awesome. (And thanks to Ashleigh for hooking me up with about a zillion boxes from her office.)
I'm still up to my eyeballs in boxes left to unpack, so this blog is going to be short. However, my sister has emailed me the hilarious (to me, anyway) picture that was the start of my doped up giggles in the hospital. So - as promised - here it is:
Yep. I felt like Herman Munster.
Thanks to the greatest Christmas gift I ever bought myself, Sirius satellite radio, I've stumbled across some great relatively unknown artists. I first heard this song driving home late one night (and before the "A Diamond Is Forever" commerical), and went immediately to my computer to download (legally) it.
Landon Pigg seems to have captured the exact Amateur Poetry Night at your local off-the wall cafe vibe with this song - and frankly, the whole CD.
And he's pretty cute.
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
But Bonnie and Linda were.
Bonnie prefers to be called "Miss Bonnie," which I refuse to do because she annoys the junk out of me. Bonnie is my version of Seinfeld's Newman. She never follows through on any apartment-related activity that I request - be it maintenance requests, general questions, or most recently this whole moving dilemma. She never remembers who I am, and when I follow up with her, she frequently gives me a completely different answer than the day before. She's good at the little personal digs, too - you know, saying things like "as I said previously...." and "as you well know..." The little sayings that make you want to jump through a phone and get slap-happy.
Every time she returns a phone call to me she opens with "Hi, Amanda...this is Miss Bonnie," to which I always reply loudly "Well hey, Bonnie." I know it gets under her skin, which is precisely why I love doing it. It's this little game we play, and I always win. If Bonnie were in her 70's, I would probably address her as "Miss." However, Bonnie is about 42. Bonnie and I are going to throw down someday - we might end up in the fountain outside the leasing office, just like the great Dynasty pool fight.
Then there's Linda. I like Linda. Linda reminds me of my fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Stapp. Her hair is always neatly tied up in a bun, and she's usually wearing a bright shade of floral. She is unmarried and loves to talk about her cats with me. She is perfectly organized and always - always - returns my phone calls promptly, and usually with the solution to any query I've had. She is always cheerful.
So yesterday when I walked into the office, Linda beamed out a "Hello, Amanda!" while Bonnie looked at me with no recollection of who I was and shuffled into her office to avoid having to work with me. (About ten minutes later, she poked her head out of her office to ask Linda a question, then looked back at me and said - I kid you not - "Oh. It's you.") Linda explained that Belinda, the never-there apartment manager, was at lunch but should be back soon.
So I waited. And waited. I wasn't too put out, because I really wasn't in a huge hurry, but poor Linda started to get antsy on my behalf, and decided to engage me in some apartment gossip. She proceeded to tell me about this elderly tenant that had just called the office to tell them that he had just come into a rather large inheritance - around $250,000 - and would like to pay a few years' rent right now. "Wow!" I said, and then Linda said something that completely shocked me:
"I wonder if he'd adopt me. You know, I could make him happy. I could dress up in a Britney Spears schoolgirl costume for him."
Yes. That. Just. Happened. And no one was there to witness it with me! I had to literally bite the insides of my cheeks to keep from making an "Ew, ew, ew!" face. Thankfully, Linda started laughing so I could laugh with her, but I'm still shuddering. It was funny, but man...I have a new mood killer to think about when Piano Man is around. That's a mental picture I can't shake -Scary Sexy Linda with pom-pom ponytail holders and knee-socks. No, no, no. Noooo.
Song I'm digging today: "Cry" by Hans Zimmer
So The Holiday is my favorite movie of all time (yes, I'm serious), due in large part to the music. The soundtrack is amazing. I listen to it every day at work - it motivates me to be all proactive and be like Kate Winslet's character in the movie, who I've decided is basically me with a British accent.
This song captures the essence of everything I want in life - introspectiveness, adventure, and lots of strings. Yep. I'm looking for more strings in my life (and if you love this movie as much as I do, you'll get that reference).
Monday, June 1, 2009
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Then he said something that made me ache a little for him - "I thought you wanted me to come on here to have some fun." And he looked at Jay Leno, someone whom I'm pretty sure he considered to be a friend, and for a moment, there was a flash of betrayal on his face. You sold me out, Jay.
I realize that I tend to gravitate towards depressing music. But as Elton John says - "Sad songs say so much."
Best line: "Won't you kiss me on that midnight street?/Sweep me off my feet,/singin' 'ain't this life so sweet?'"
Sunday, May 24, 2009
And let me say - all those people are liars. Because it hurt. It really hurt.
I was more freaked out about the IV than I was the actual surgery, and surprisingly, the nurse I had in the pre-op room was really good and got me on the first stick (which almost never happens with me).
Then the nurse asked me if I wanted something to "take the edge off," and I told them yes, actually, that would be fantastic. And then I got loopy. Everything became hilarious - everything. My dad and sister said I just laid there giggling for no reason. The funniest thing to me became the fact that I was too tall for the hospital bed and my feet were sticking out from under the covers. I don't think they anticipate 6 ft. tall female patients. In fact, we thought it was so funny that my sister took a picture of it. I'll post it as soon as she emails it to me.
Unfortunately, the saline they started pumping into me made me have to go to the bathroom like every ten minutes. My sister told me she thought that maybe it was all in my head, but I'm sorry - my bladder begged to differ. There really isn't a worse feeling than the male nurse wheeling you into the surgical room and knowing deep down that you really, really have to go to the bathroom. So I said "Um...is it normal for me to have to go this bad after I went just like...ten minutes ago?" To which he informed me that I evidently have a nervous bladder. So I just went ahead and apologized if something "unexpected" occurred while I was in LaLa Land. He just laughed and told me to count backwards from ten. Luckily for him and all the medical staff, there were no surprises on my end. Literally.
Then I had this awful Stephen King-ish moment - they were putting me under, but I could still hear them talking. I couldn't talk or move, but I could hear every word. They were saying "Yep, she's out" and "Hello, Dr. M., she's all ready." Inwardly I was panicking, screaming inside - "NOOOOOOO....I'm still awake!" I just knew I was going to be one of those horror stories where you can't move or talk but you can feel and are aware of everything. Shudder. Luckily, just as I was really beginning to freak out, I went all the way under.
After everything was over, Ashleigh helped me to get into the car and drove me to her house with my dad and sister following behind her. I don't remember much of this, but I know that she and my sister helped me up the stairs and into bed, and I slept for pretty much the rest of the day and into the next morning, waking up for about 30 minutes when Kam brought me a yogurt smoothie and then again at around 8:30 PM when Ashleigh made me eat a sweet potato so I could take my painkillers.
I have to say - I've got such great friends and family. There are lots of good things about being single, honestly. I can spend my money on things that I want. Go to movies I want to go to. Go on vacation whenever. Have as girly an apartment as I want.
But there are some parts of being single that really stink - namely, when you're sick and you have no one to take care of you and hold your hair when you need to throw up. I'm so lucky that I have friends here in town who are willing to do that for me, and have literally done exactly that without complaining or making me feel like a burden. Friends that are willing to give up Memorial Day weekend fun so they can look after me.
Ok, I better stop. I'm getting verklempt.
So all in all, the surgery hurts more than they lead you to believe, but it's day two now, and I'm actually beginning to feel a good deal better. Once the soreness wears away, I think I'll be back to normal.
Bye bye, gallbladder. You were not good to me. I do not miss you.
Song that I'm digging today: "More Time" by Needtobreathe
I really love the percussion in this song - it just drives the song on and on. Plus, the bluesy/country/rock sound is pretty infectious. And I completely identify with the idea that everyone feels like if they'd just had or have more time, you can figure out exactly what's going wrong in your life and relationships. Problem is, most people aren't really willing to give you enough time.
Best line: "So say what's on your mind/'Cause I can't figure out just what's inside."
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Best line: "You never multiply all these divisions/You give yourself the least of parts."
Monday, May 18, 2009
The truth is, I really don't want a relationship with Piano Man. My plan is just to win him over so we can at least have one good make-out session. Or twelve.
So when he moon-walks into my office (so cute) for his piano lesson, I'm totally unprepared for his suggestion: "Ok, Miss - we're going to take a field trip." What? We're going somewhere? Together? My heart skipped a beat. Then he says "...to buy me a piano." Ok. So it's not a date. But we're still going somewhere. As a pair. There is make-out potential here.
We walked outside and towards our cars. Then he suggests we drive separately, so I can "get home more easily after he finds a piano." This is not a good sign. He says he'll follow me, because he's not 100% sure where he's going. Fine.
I walk to my car, praying that I'm not walking funny or that there's not something on my butt since he's watching me, and I click the unlock button on my key.
And here's where it gets good: I hear the door unlock...behind me.
Yes, folks. I'm standing in front of the wrong car. Granted, it's the same make and color as mine, but come on.
I said "Wow, this would be great if it were my car." Silence. Crickets. Then I hear him laugh a little (courtesy) and say "What are the odds?" Ha ha.
Long story short - we didn't even find a piano. We walked around the music store and he stopped every few minutes to play on a guitar, and then we walked out. He said "See you in two weeks!" I said "Ok."
Oh, yeah. He wants me.
Song I'm digging today: "World Spins Madly On" by The Weepies
I'm a little obsessed with this husband and wife band. This is the first song I ever heard by them, and it always makes me think of sitting on the front porch of my parents' house with my headphones on, watching it rain.
Since then, I've bought every CD they've released, and they've all been fantastic. I even got my sister hooked.
Best line: "I watch the stars from my windowsill/The whole world is moving, but I'm standing still..."
Sunday, May 17, 2009
And I started thinking - when does anyone actually curl up in a chair, unless there's some extreme stomach pain involved? With me, it's more like "she sprawls contentedly on her couch, reading US Weekly." Curling up causes your legs and/or arms to fall asleep or cramp up and then you have to shift and shake the life back into the appendage that had been folded in half.
I've been known to use that phrase, though (my first blog, even), along with countless other authors trying to describe the perfect "homey" scene. I think it's because "she was curled up" immediately brings to mind a dainty, feminine girl all folded up on herself, sipping tea while pushing up her cute Lisa Loeb glasses. What girl doesn't want to identify with that? And more importantly, who wants to identify with the alternative, and more true statement: extremely tall girl, sprawled out, one leg on the coffee table, in an old Jacksonville State University t-shirt, ratty grey Old Navy sweatpants from five years ago, and quite possibly a box of Krispy Kreme donuts (if it's a Saturday, Ashleigh - I'm not cheating, I promise ;-) ) close at hand?
Maybe this is why I'm single.
Song I'm digging today: "Dogs" by Damien Rice
This is quite possibly one of the prettiest melodies Damien Rice has written. I know it's still just May, but this just sounds like summer to me.
Favorite line: "And she gets splashed in rain/and turns away/and leaves me standing."
I'm ready for Damien Rice to come out with another CD. It's about time.
Thursday, May 14, 2009
So what if it's just the way you are? The way you are is annoying. The way you are is rude. The way you are is unacceptable.
That excuse holds no water for me.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
I don't know what's into me, but I am in the mood to redecorate everything - my apartment, my office, even my wardrobe.