Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Wednesday Thoughts

My weekly jumble of mostly unrelated thoughts.

I sometimes refer to the year 2010 as 0-10 which I know is not correct. I got used to putting an 0 in front of the number and I can't stop.

Speaking of dates, tomorrow is April Fools Day. Are you planning any pranks? This may surprise you, but I'm not a big fan of pranks. Or rather, I'm not very good at them. I absolutely can't keep a straight face and it ends up being much too much work. (Maybe by saying that, I'm just trying to throw you off the scent.)

So, a guy friend of mine recently told me that I should write a blog post explaining women, and what we want. For obvious reasons, this is an impossible task. But I want to throw this out there: to my male readers, if you have questions about women, leave a comment and I'll do a post at some point answering your questions! This could be fun.

And lastly, last week a location director visited my office building. He said they will be filming a movie across the street from our building in a couple months and might want to use our building for part of it. The movie stars Pierce Brosnan (and the location director said we will probably see him). Although it also stars some equally famous co-stars, I went temporarily deaf after he said Pierce Brosnan. Pierce Brosnan was my first celebrity crush when I was a kid - I thought he was sooo handsome when I saw him on Remington Steele (which I was not allowed to watch but managed to catch glimpses of). Who was your first celebrity crush?

Happy Wednesday.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Blogger Brawl

Hey guys! I need your help again. I have to submit another entry to the blogger brawl for round two. The post should have something to do with dating so I'm going to choose one I've written on my blog and tweek it just a little bit for the competition. But I need your help choosing one!

Here are the four I'm considering:

Build her a cake or something - A recent post about being asked out over the phone or in person versus text or e-mail.

The Ball - "The ball is in his court" - this post is about trying to figure out who has the ball, so to speak, and how it's often dropped prematurely due to this confusion.

The Mystery of the Burp - This is the story about how a burp ruined my chances of finding out of I was on a date or not. The only thing is, as far as I know, the guy who this post is about still doesn't know I wrote it and I'd kind of like to keep it that way.'s still pretty funny so I'm putting it out there for consideration.

Love Story - My grandma desperately wants me to get married. This post explores the way my love story would play out depending on which TV channel turned it into a movie.

Which is your favorite? I could really use your help! Thanks!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Positive Spin

I think one of the biggest challenges single people face is keeping our self esteem up. Every little rejection, whether perceived or real, seems to take a toll on the way we see ourselves. When you've been single for a long time, the damage becomes more and more apparent in the way you think and carry yourself.

I struggle with this and so do most of my single friends. My initial responses to feelings of rejection are often something like this:

*A guy says "let's do something" but doesn't actually call = my thighs must be fat.
*A guy flirts with me but doesn't ask me out = I have a good personality, but I'm unattractive (a "sweet spirit" if you will).
*I haven't been asked out in a long time = I'm ugly and my ears stick out.
*I've been on several first dates but not as many second dates = my personality is lame.
*I cook dinner for a guy and he throws up = I'm a bad cook.
*A guy takes one look at me and says I'm under dressed for the symphony = I shouldn't have worn my "Team Jacob" t-shirt.

Years of these thoughts added one on top of another leave a single person with less than ideal self esteem. How do you fight this? Well, I have a guy friend who has amazing self esteem. I asked him how he does it and he said, "I just tell myself that every girl I know wants me." He told me that I should do that with guys too. I tried and couldn't manage it. But I do think I can change the sentences above into something positive:

*A guy says "let's do something" but doesn't actually call = he's watching a Walker Texas Ranger marathon and he lost his phone.
*A guy flirts with me but doesn't ask me out = he heard a rumor that I'm dating James Franco (and it turns out the rumor is true).
*I haven't been asked out in a long time = I should stop wearing my fake wedding ring.
*I've been on several first dates but not as many second dates = I need to stop challenging guys to "dance offs" on a first date.
*I cook dinner for a guy and he throws up = he's allergic to good cooking.
*A guy takes one look at me and says I'm under dressed for the symphony= He's jealous of my Team Jacob shirt. And with reason.

Yeah, I like this. I think turning negative self talk into positive, albeit ridiculous thoughts, might work. What are some of your positive affirmations? I'll give you some time to stare at the picture of James Franco before you comment.

And P.S., I won my first round of the blogger brawl! Thank you to those of you who voted for me! I'll need those votes again in a couple weeks for round two!

Friday, March 26, 2010

But you don't have to take my word for it

First and foremost, I want to thank those of you who voted for my blog in the blog competition. If you have not voted yet, I would appreciate it if you would! Here's the link. Voting ends tonight at midnight! Now that I have that business out of the way, we can move on (but don't forget to vote! - Ok, I'm done now).

I just finished rereading, for the umpteenth time, one of my all time favorite books, The Bean Trees. Actually, I didn't exactly finish it. I still have five or six pages to go that I can't bring myself to read because I don't want the book to end.

I was first introduced to this book when I was 16 or so and I used to read it once a year because I loved it so much. But this time it had been about five years since I last read it. It meant as much to me this time as all the previous readings, only a bit more. And in different ways. Do you know what I mean? Different parts stand out to me now. But the book is still as amazing as ever.

There's another book I have a history of rereading. It's called Golden Boy's Sister. This book is sort of an inside joke with my sisters and me. We read it out loud to each other when we were young, and we loved it - but in a mostly joking way because it's just awful. It's like reading an after school special from the 80's. We laughed at it for all the wrong reasons. And it became a tradition for us to read this book out loud with each other every so often and laugh together about all our favorite terrible parts.

About a year ago I found our old copy of Golden Boy's Sister and decided to reread it since it'd been so long. This time when I read it I found that for the first time, I could relate more to the mom in the book than the teenage main characters. It was interesting and I'm glad I reread it, even though it's a truly awful book. I'll probably reread it again at some point in the future and find that I relate more to the grandma. But that better not be for at least five more years.

The thing I like about a reread is that it makes you realize things about yourself. You find you relate to the book differently because of things you've experienced since the last time you read it. Different characters stand out to you; different parts touch you. You feel parts of the book more deeply than you used to which causes you to reflect on the things that have changed in your life in the time that has passed.

Besides these two books I've listed, I have several other books I reread from time to time. Part of me thinks it's a waste of time because I have so many new books I'd like to read but another part of me thinks that rereading a book I love is like visiting an old friend. And there's nothing wrong with that.

Do you have a book that you have read over and over again? (If it's by Dr. Seuss, I'm sorry but it doesn't count. Shel Silverstein does count - don't ask me why.)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wednesday Thoughts

One of my favorite old t.v. shows is the Mary Tyler Moore show. In some ways I can relate to Mary and in other ways I wish my life were more like hers. If you're unfamiliar with the show, Mary is 30 when it begins. She works in a newsroom, has a funky neighbor named Rhoda and has a lot of funny and not-so-funny dating adventures (but mostly funny). If I had to live in a t.v. show, I'd probably choose the Mary Tyler Moore show.

But if the role of Mary were already taken and I had to be in a different t.v. show, my other picks would be Rose on The Golden Girls (all that hanging out on the lanai looks like fun), Claire on the Cosby Show (smart, beautiful, and feisty), or the Genie on I Dream of Genie (both for her figure and her magic, although I'd probably cover my midriff more than she does). Which t.v. character's life you would take over if you were forced to live in a t.v. show?

I promise my life doesn't revolve around t.v. It just sounds that way. Maybe I shouldn't watch t.v. while I'm blogging...

Moving on to more important things!

I entered a blog competition for 20-something bloggers last month. I raised a little bit of a stink about the "20-something" limitations and was told I could enter even though I'm a spinster (my words). I was chosen as one of 32 finalists and today is the day you can vote for me to go on to the next round! If you would do that, I would appreciate it. The winner gets to write a weekly dating column which I think would be a lot of fun. Here's a link for voting. Thank you! (Oh, and in case you were wondering, I did not write that little blurb about myself on the blogging competition page.)

And of course, happy Wednesday.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


I don't understand Twitter. Why does everyone need to know everything about each other? Why do we need to know what everyone is eating and what they're watching on tv and when they have to go to the bathroom in real time? Maybe I've read 1984 too many times, but the whole thing makes me nervous.

I decided I'd keep a mental Twitter account yesterday to see if I did anything interesting that would make a good Tweet. I didn't.

Here's the evidence:

7:40 Heading to work.
8:00 Made it to work. Still half asleep.
11:45: Another Lean Cuisine for lunch. With salsa, it's edible.
4:00 Doctor's appointment. Ugh.
5:00 Appointment went well. All systems go.
6:00 French toast for dinner. Brinner is the best.
8:00 Fell asleep after dinner. Just woke up. Not my best idea.
9:00 Going to pharmacy.
9:30 Saw a kid begging his dad for candy at the store. Dad said no. Being an adult stinks sometimes, but at least I can have candy whenever I want.
9:40 Ate a Cadbury Egg in honor of the kid who couldn't have candy. It was divine.
9:50 The Cadbury Egg gave me a stomachache. I should have listened to that kid's dad.
10:30 Goodnight.

Wow. With a day like that, I think I'm doing the world a favor by not opening a Twitter account.

Is the point of Twitter to make us even more connected than we already are through Facebook and blogs? And if so, does it work? What do we get from it?

Monday, March 22, 2010

Spring Fever

Now that it's officially spring, I have spring fever. I'm no longer fretting about whether or not it will snow again. It will. But it won't last.

I find myself daydreaming about taking road trips to northern Michigan (which I think it has the most beautiful scenery on earth - although where you live is pretty nice too) and smelling the water and pine trees and campfires. I've been playing those "Pure Michigan" commercials over and over again in my head. I've got spring fever and I've got it bad. Am I the only one?

Here are some pictures I took during warmer times last year. I love Michigan in the non-winter months. What are some of your favorite places to visit in the summer?

Friday, March 19, 2010

Cure for the surlies

Sometimes I find myself in the surliest mood. I'd blame it on being a woman and all that goes along with that, but that might be seen as anti feminist so I'll blame it on something else.

Today I've been fighting back the surlies. I'm pretty sure it's just because I'm tired, I'm not feeling that great, and everyone is being really annoying. Ok, that last one isn't true. But the first two are.

These moods don't come too often but when they do I know I'm not pleasant to be around. So I try to take my orneriness out on things that won't be affected by it and spare the innocent bystanders around me.

One of my favorite outlets is game shows. I watch those shows and say the meanest things to the contestants. And I have to say, it is so satisfying. Sometimes I take stuff out on Alex Trebeck too, just because he's a know-it-all. But I never say anything bad to Pat or Vanna because they are just too sweet. Although sometimes I tell Pat it's time to update his hair style but I say it nicely.

Most of my ridicule is in the form of taunting, like when I'm watching Wheel of Fortune and reach the end of my rope: "I can't believe you can't solve the puzzle yet!! Don't they have some kind of screening process to get on this show!? And you better not guess a 'b' again! If you love the letter 'b' so much, why don't you marry it!?!?! Come on!!"

With Jeopardy it's something like, "How could you possibly have gotten that wrong!? What is wrong with you? I've known that since like 6th grade! And don't let Alex talk to you like that! And Alex, quit being so dang condescending with your, 'why the answer was Samiginaokao Tinawakeewee to the fourth power, of course.' Why do you have to throw in, 'of course'!? Standing there, reading answers on your little note cards acting like you know stuff."

Usually by the end of Jeopardy, I feel a ton better. And no one gets hurt. How do you get rid of your bad moods?


If you want to instantly lower your self esteem, ask a kid under six how old they think you are.

While in college I taught Spanish to elementary school kids. In one of the first units of the semester we'd learn the numbers. To help them practice, I'd go around and ask the kids questions that had number answers. Questions like, "how many fingers do you have?" And "how old are you?" They would inevitably take the opportunity to ask me how old I was too and being the masochist that I am, I'd tell them to guess.

Their answers would go something like this:



One hundred?

We're done.

I was reminded of this yesterday during a conversation with a four year old daughter of a friend. When I walked into their house she and I started talking and she started in on the age question. But she took a different route:

4 yr old (4yo): Are you old?
Me: Yes....I suppose so.
4yo: Are you a grandma?
Me: What? No!
4yo: Do you still have your kids?
Me: (Thinking: still?) I don't have any kids.


4yo: Oh.

I learned two things from this conversation. One: I could have passed for a grandma, and two: it's unacceptable to small kids that I (still) don't have any kids. With the Spanish students, I could tell myself that they just had no concept of age. But with this little girl, she just came right out with "are you a grandma?"!

It might help if I didn't dye my hair blue-ish purple and use a walker, but one step at a time. Anyone know a good place to get botox injections?

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Blog Makeover

Hey guys! I need your input. I think I want to get a blog makeover but I'm not sure where to go for it. And honestly, I don't even know what I want it to look like exactly. I have some ideas:

Pretty, but not girly.
Simple but not boring.
Colorful but not too colorful.
Bright but not garish.
Shaken but not stirred.

You get the idea.

Have any of you had a good experience with a blog designer that you would recommend? Or do you have any good ideas for a design?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wednesday Thoughts

My weekly jumble of mostly unrelated thoughts.

Top of the morning to you and happy Saint Patrick's Day! Are you wearing green? I am, but only because I was trained at a young age that not wearing green on St. Patrick's Day is grounds for pinching. Is there any other holiday that physically punishes a person for not acknowledging it? I don't even think I'm Irish!

In other news, if you need a laugh today, check out this product on amazon. The best part is the user reviews.

How do you guys feel about arranged marriages? Awhile back, I asked my friend Christi to arrange one for me but I don't think she took me seriously. I'm pretty sure I can learn to love most anyone and I'm tired of dating. It seems like whenever I go on a date I suffer from major déjà EW afterwards, flashing back to all of the things I did that were slightly embarrassing or uncool. Like suggesting the smitten too early in the date, or saying, "I can't believe you asked me out! No one ever asks me out! This is so cool! I hope we can go out again really really soon!"*

Enough about that. So, I got to meet a blog friend in person on Sunday and it was really fun. Since we only know each other through our blogs, I couldn't help but wonder if I seemed different than she expected, and I sort of hope I did. I mean, in real life I don't go around talking about smittens, snuggies, arranged marriages, and dating, like I do on this blog. That's a lie. I talk about all those things incessantly.

And lastly, I made some homemade granola bars last night that my friend Sara recommended and they were amazing. I would highly recommend them to all of you! Here's a link if you're interested. You could probably add some green food coloring and call it a St. Patrick's Day treat if you're in danger of getting pinched today. You'll just have to carry them around all day. But that's the risk you take when you don't wear green. And don't try to pull the whole "my underwear's green" trick because you never know when someone might check.

Happy Wednesday. I hope you don't get pinched.

*I never really said that. I am adding this disclaimer due to the realization that a couple people reading this don't realize how sarcastic I am and seemed concerned for me.

Monday, March 15, 2010

March Madness

For the second year in a row, I've decided to enter my company's March Madness bracket competition thingamajiggy. I found out that both second place and last place win $25 so I figure my complete lack of knowledge in this field could actually win me some money.

What I can't decide is how to choose. These are the options I'm exploring:

1. States/cities I like
2. Mascots
3. Jersey color
4. Player attractiveness

For example, between Michigan State and New Mexico State, I'd have to choose Michigan State since I'm from Michigan.

Between the University of Kentucky's Wildcats and Tennessee State's Bluetick Coonhound, I'm going to go with Kentucky. I mean, the wildcat scares me, but what the heck is a bluetick coonhound!? Let's be real.

And then between Baylor and Sam Houston State, it'd have to be Baylor because I look horrible in orange, which is the S.H.S. jersey color.

As far as the ultimate winner is concerned, I think I'll go with Utah State because I saw part of a game the other night and one of their players is pretty cute. They lost the game I watched but that only makes me want to choose them even more for #1.

No matter how you look at it, I'm about to become $25 richer.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

"Build her a cake or something"

If there's one thing I know, it's that it's nice to be asked out on a date. But let's be honest, there are some ways to be asked out that are better than others.

When I was a teenager I remember guys doing all sorts of crazy things to ask girls to dances. Personally I never experienced the elaborate date proposal (sniffle) but it happened to people I knew, especially for the big dances like home coming and prom. The "ask a girl to a dance" plan was often so elaborate it was akin to a marriage proposal.

As far as I know that pretty much ends after the teenage years, which is fine. But although I don't expect a cake that says, "will you go out with me?" written on it, in some ways I think it goes too far in the other direction the older you get.

The way I see it, dating starts in the teenage years with the guy making a scavenger hunt that ends with him holding a bouquet of roses and surrounded by m&ms that spell out, "will you go to prom with me?" But by the time you're my age (which is an age that shall not be named), the norm seems to be a text, IM, or an e-mail saying, "Wanna do something this weekend?"

Now, like I said, it's nice to be asked out in general so I don't hold anything against the guys who have asked me out this way. And being asked out by text doesn't make me lose interest in a guy either. But it doesn't feel very personal, does it? When a guy actually calls me and asks me out, he gets major brownie points. It shows an investment - it takes courage to call someone and ask them out. I should know because I never do it for that exact reason.

What do you guys think? Is asking someone on a first date via text message or another electronic way ok with you? It's ok with me, I suppose. It just means a lot more if they call or ask me in person. Am I alone on this?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Wednesday Thoughts

I was thinking today about one of my childhood best friends, Caitlin. Caitlin was a great friend who lived in my town for a year or two when I was around 8 or 9 years old.

Here are some of the things Caitlin and I did together:

*came up with the best recipe ever: melted chocolate chips and peanut butter eaten in a bowl, with chopsticks.

*listened to 96.3 all day long waiting for our favorite Prince, Madonna, and Weird Al songs to come on so we could tape record them. This was a lot of work but paid off in the end.

*adopted a three legged cat and felt really sorry for its misfortune, cooing over it and wondering what had happened to it and worrying profusely about its future and the difficult life it would lead.

*pulled in the most pathetic looking tree branch Caitlin could find and decorated it for Christmas instead of a Christmas tree.

*wore plastic charm necklaces, Michael Jackson pins and tons of plastic bracelets.

*attempted to make our own clothes. This is my favorite Caitlin memory. My mom had some left over fabric that she let Caitlin and I use. We spent the afternoon cutting out fabric based on what we assumed were our body types. Luckily for us, we were sticks back then and guessed correctly. I made a t-shirt and shorts, and by made I mean stapled, safety pinned, and taped. We were so proud of our work. We spent the entire day in those outfits, running around outside, riding our bikes, and pretty much showing off our sewing skills to anyone who cared. It's truly a miracle that the clothes stayed intact all day. We never wore them again and I have no idea what became of them. I assume they either fell apart or my mom "lost" them.

I would love to hear about some adventures you had with your childhood best friends.

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Thoughts on Spring

I often talk on my blogs about how much I loathe winter. Honestly though, I don't think loathe is a strong enough word. I don't like what winter does to me, AKA, suck my will to live. Or to live fully at any rate.

Years ago, I met a friend who came to Michigan for school. He left in the summers so we only spent time together during the school year. One summer he came back early and after hanging out once or twice, he said to me in a surprised voice, "you are a completely different person in the summer."

And I think he's right. When the weather is warmer, I feel more hopeful. I laugh more easily; I accomplish more; I have a more positive attitude. I feel that life has more to offer and that I am capable of accomplishing goals and fulfilling my destiny (whatever that may be - it's still winter so I can't remember).

Don't get me wrong, I don' t become a total slug in the winter. I like to think that I am still relatively pleasant, although some might disagree. (I hope not.) I try to prevent my muscles from completely atrophying and I get out of bed for the important things like work and a certain amount of socializing. Unless, of course, the roads are covered with snow and ice, which they often are.

This time of year I start to feel my happier side emerging. It makes me wonder why I live in Michigan. If I lived in a warmer state, would I be the more hopeful and happy me all year? Or would I miss the change of seasons? After all, I absolutely love fall and I'm pretty sure I would miss it.

But winter... Winter, I could do without.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Skechers Update

Well, I bought the Skechers. And get this, I'm wearing them in public today. I bought them on Saturday but was too embarrassed to wear them in public so I didn't get to really try them out till yesterday when I went on a walk with my friend Nichole.

They're interesting. Since a few of you have asked, I thought I'd give a brief review. Keep in mind I've only owned them for two full days. So far I don't find them too hard to get used to. They make you walk heal-to-toe which makes me feel my muscles more. In fact, I even felt a burning in my abs when walking up hill in them, which is awesome. The downside is higher risk for shin splints which I felt a bit at first but which have since gone away.

I was curious what it would be like to wear them for an entire day so I threw caution (and fashion sense) to the wind and wore them to work today. Luckily there is no dress code at my office, which some take full advantage of, so I could probably show up in MC Hammer pants, a tube top, and bowling shoes and no one would notice.

The main thing I've noticed about these shoes is that they are extremely comfortable. And while my body hasn't morphed into....(insert female celebrity with hot body's name here) , I've noticed that walking up a steep hill, like I did this morning, leaves a nice burn in my muscles - nothing too painful - just a sign that the shoes are doing something extra. They seem to make normal walk into something more productive.

Either I've been completely brainwashed or I can expect my body to change completely in the next few months. No, there's no chance I've been brainwashed. Miracles are going to happen thanks to the shoes, I can feel it. New and improved life, here I come!

Friday, March 5, 2010

47 Times?

Some mornings on my way into work I like to listen to a segment on a local Detroit radio station called "impossible trivia." They ask questions like "44% of all women wear this to bed every night" (answer: makeup) and "what's the first place most women experience their first kiss?" (answer: their back yard).

The other day I heard one that caught me off guard. The question was "the average woman does this 47 times a year....the average man, only 7."

My guess was "wash their sheets" which I know is really harsh on guys but guys sort of have a reputation for that kind of thing. But anyway, I was wrong. The answer was "cry."

You know what my first thought was? "Only 47?" Then I realized that's nearly once a week, which is sort of a lot. For a second I worried that I might cry more than the average woman but I think I just have a loose definition of crying. I mean, I can easily get a tear in my eye at the end of a sad movie or tv show...or even a commercial.

But in those cases I'm talking about a single-tear-quick-wipe-nobody-noticed ("there's something in my eye") type of crying. Do each of those tears count as a crying session?

I was also surprised that men cry 7 times a year. Do you think that's accurate? And what do men cry about? My guesses: sports, movies about sports, Magnum mustache envy, women (?), and lastly sports. Am I close?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


What do you guys think of these shoes? I've been eyeing them lately. Yes, they look like orthopedic shoes but I hear they do wonders for the thighs and butt so that makes the possible public humiliation worth it...I think. I haven't decided. They're pretty pricey too. Have any of you tried them? Would you be willing to wear them in public?

Wednesday Thoughts

My weekly jumble of mostly unrelated thoughts.

Can I start with a little venting? I've been noticing with the news coverage of the earthquake in Chile that a lot of reporters are trying to pronounce Chile correctly by calling it "Chill-ay." I'm not usually a Spanish snob but this half way right pronunciation is sort of driving me loca, if you will. Either go with the American pronunciation (Chilly) or go all the way with the Spanish one (Cheelay). Sadly, I doubt any newscasters are reading this. But thanks for letting me get that off my chest.

In other news, I think I might be addicted to "lol" and I know for a fact that I'm 20 years too old to be using it as much as I do, or at all. I'm honestly not "lol"ing as much as I say I am either.It's embarrassing. For friends I regularly e-mail, just know I'm working on it. Have patience with me. Is there a 12 step program for getting over lol addiction?

So, last night I started a short post about how I saw this guy get shoved into a bookshelf at Borders, choked, then arrested by an undercover cop and Blogger had the nerve to publish the post before I was done. I'm sorry if some of you saw the incomplete story. I'll finish it one of these days - trust me, it was a doozy.

I need a new ringtone - any ideas? It has to be a song I won't get sick of right away. And I sort of have a phone phobia so it should be a song that makes me happy my phone is ringing. Is there such a song?

Happy Wednesday.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


Thank you so much for your comments on my last post. I have to admit I was feeling pretty good about myself yesterday and was almost starting to worry about getting a big head. Then something happened.

Around mid afternoon, my coworker Justin told me that he had been in the kitchen and had overheard two people talking. One of them said to the other, "I was talking to Elizabeth Downie about how great the rec center is." And the other said, "Who's Elizabeth Downie?"

Now, the company I work at isn't small but at the same time, it's not that big. True, there are some people who's names I don't know, but I have interacted with that particular women on at least ten occasions.

And just like that, my head shrunk back to size.