Monday, July 31, 2006

Thin doesn't feel as good as eating with Jerry Seinfeld

I was directed to this woman's blog via Shell's post about a "kerfuffle" (I'm totally stealing this word from Shell over at Words, Words, Words because it's fun to say. Like "akimbo" in my last post. Feel free to use both in a sentence sometime soon. "There was a kerfuffle over me falling off the stage while naked with private parts all akimbo." Fun stuff I tell ya, but I digress... hell, that's blogging status quo.) Anywho, the kerfuffle was about some topless pics of her on Flickr. And *gasp* she's a professor. You can read more about it over at Shell's place.

What I'd like to point you to is a previous post of Dr. Diana's about dieting and body image. I'd really like to adopt her philosophy. I find it sound and sane. And she has a good point about Oprah and her behavior. Suffice it to say, I would never turn down a dinner invitation with anyone, especially if the only reason was because I'm not allowed to eat after a certain time. I may have issues if you scheduled it too close to my bed time but definitely not because it's past 7:30pm. Good lord woman. She does a lot of good things for the world but she's obsessed with the weight thing.

I wear my sunglasses at night...

I really dislike talking to people with sunglasses on that are so reflective or dark that I can't see their eyes.

I adored my fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Halpin. While everyone else was whooping and running out of the building on the last day of school I cried because I would miss her so much. One of the most important things she taught me, besides multiplication tables, was to always look a person in the eye when you're talking to them. So when a person, for all intents and purposes, doesn't have eyes, it is very disconcerting. I can't focus. It's like having a phone conversation only with a phone conversation no one cares that you're looking here and there. Since in a sunglasses conversation the person is right there in front of you you can't let your eyes wander. But there is also nothing else to rest on. And so my concentration is on trying not to not look in their "eyes" instead of on the conversation. And it stresses me out.

Maybe I should just invest in a pair myself. Then I can look around with wild abandon and they'll never be the wiser.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Sassy Pants Sans Pants

Did I ever show you this? It's from my stint as a nude model. I asked for a souvenir sketch and here it is. I'm not quite sure what is going on with the basketball head but nice ass huh?

I had to will myself to stay awake on all the pillows because by this point I'd already done eight 5-minute poses. This was a 40 minute long pose and I was ready for a nap. The only thing stopping me from snoozing was the fear of unconsciously rolling over, falling off the little stage, and having everything all akimbo and covered in black smudges because the floor was coated in a semester's worth of charcoal pencil. A legitimate fear I'm sure you'll agree.

This picture is framed and hanging in my bedroom. To remind me of my fearlessness. And that I still have a nice ass even if I can no longer zip my pants because of my expanding waistline.

Irony anyone?

Can I just say that I LOVE the title of this study? I haven't even gone to the link but it's so amusing I had to share it.

"Study Questions Accuracy of Studies; Researcher Into Health Research Says about a Third of Research Wrong"

Thursday, July 27, 2006

State of the Union

Every so often the President gets up and tells the world about the state of the Union, in what is creatively called, the State of the Union. Admittedly, I never watch. I just can't. It's like chalkboard fingernail scratching and water torture combined - quick painful bursts and inexorable discomfort. Just one more reason I am glad I no longer have cable.

What all this has to do with the price of tea in China I don't know. But in a week from today I will be turning thirty and I thought it might be a good idea to take stock once again. For awhile there I was updating you all on the Sassy Pants Seven (or Eight depending): Diet, Discardia, Thesis, Work, Finances, Vacation, Fitness and Relationship. That seems to have fallen by the wayside but I intend to change that here. Hopefully, the state of my union will not be quite as painful as the real one.

Diet - There is a reason that the diet and fitness industries are bazillion dollar money makers. That reason being that I, like so many others, cannot seem to gather up the will power to stop feeding my freakin' FACE. Ahem...Since the time that I vowed to lose five pounds I have gained 4. Yeeha! I'm both an over and underachiever at the same time. Part of this is because I stopped running after the half marathon. My IT band was making my knee hurt so I rested. I haven't been a compete and utter slacker though. I still teach my abs class and take a couple classes at the gym (ok, one class, one. Pbltt!) but my tummy is paying the price. I did get on the treadmill again last night and ran a mile. Man does a person atrophe fast. It was tough. But I'll keep at it.

Discardia - For those new to Big Girl Underoos that is the practice of getting rid of one's stuff. For awhile I was getting rid of one thing a day. I made it to about 30 things and then stopped. However, I am contemplating getting a new, smaller, cheaper apartment closer to work if possible so I need to regroup and figure out what I need, want, don't even realize I have and purge once again. Realizing that I may be going from a 2 bedroom to a 1 bedroom or even studio apartment is certainly motivation.

Thesis - I have grand plans to work on my thesis this weekend. Before I got my new job I was telling some friends that I thought the new job would inspire me to work on it and it has. For one, I now work in the same building as my program's administration so I pass by the office anytime I enter or leave the building. For another, I'm busier and energized and I don't have to force myself with my own deadlines at work so I'm much more willing to deal with self-imposed deadlines at home. It was too hard pushing myself at work and at home. A girl's gotta rest. But I WILL finish transcribing my last interview this weekend. Maybe I'll even have an outline or put some ideas on paper.

Work - New job, new digs, new energy. I'm enjoying it so far. I appreciate having tasks that end and I can take off my to do list. And deadlines. And a team that knows what I'm doing. And being closer to the action. So far so good!

Finances - This is going well. I am transitioning between biweekly paychecks and monthly so I've had to do some planning and paying attention but I still actually have money in my account despite only having been paid for one week since July 1. I have had to resort to using my credit card but I'm fairly confident that I'll be able to pay it off again after I get paid on the first. Next, paying off my car and/or sending a chunk to Sallie May for my student loans - or at least the interest so I can get a tax deduction next year.

Vacation - I took one with Friendster Guy. And it was nice. I know I have another in November but after that, or in the interim, it's wide open.

Fitness - See above under Diet. Softball is now over so I will have time to go to the gym and run and such again. I like being outside but you don't really get a lot of exercise while sitting in the dugout or standing in the field. Quick bursts from base to base do not a workout make. Not for me anyway. For some players it would behoove us to stock an oxygen tank and give it to them if they make it to a base. God forbid if they get a double.

Relationships - I'm going to add familial relationships to this category. Friendster Guy and I seem to be getting along quite well. We know what some of our shortcomings are - me taking things too personally, him not verbalizing thoughts and feelings. But recognizing you have a problem is half the battle. Family-wise my siblings have been informed by my Mom that they had hurt my feelings by being so nice to my X and not being quite as nice to me. My brother apologized specifically and we've talked about it. My sister and I are taking the "I know you know that I know that you know, you know?" approach. I think it will be ok.

That's the state of my union. All in all not a bad place to be on the edge of 30. I'm looking forward to the next decade. My last was quite exciting and eventful. And I learned a lot about myself.

Here's to learning and growing (even if it is older and fatter).

Free entertainment

You know what I'm really enjoying? Listening to Slaughterhouse 5 on CD. I've never listened to a book on tape (CD) before. I got it out of the library as a trial to see if I'd like it. I'd never read the book and it was on my list to read so I thought, "Why not?"

I actually get excited about my commute now. I find myself thinking, "Yes! I get to listen to my book again!" instead of "Oh great, another 25 minutes of my life gone forever."

It's good to find new ways to amuse yourself.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Sex for dummies...or is that with dummies?

Friendster Guy and I have a running, mmm, I wouldn't say joke, but a running commentary about how he sleeps better when I'm not around. Given the fact that as long as we are together I will be around and sometimes sharing a bed, and that for the foreseeable future that is how it's going to be - and it may someday even increase - he's just going to have to suck it up. To prove his point, however, he jokingly shared this headline with me "Study: Men Sharing Beds Impairs Mental Ability", also cross referenced under "Men Who Sleep With A Partner Are Dumber"

First, one study of 8 unmarried heterosexual couples does not a scientific study make.

Second, it's not that men are dumber, they just choose to use their brain less if there is a female around. There are two reasons for this. The first is that their brain tends to be a little lower in their body when a woman is around. Second, men tend to coopt a woman's brain if they have one around to utilize. If you separate the couple after they've just been in close proximity, it takes a little while for the man to adjust, hence the lower mental acuity result. My theory plays itself out when men are looking for something. I've seen men (ok, my X) look for something without ever opening a single drawer or even scanning surface areas. It's like he expected it to be floating in front of his eyes.

Male (because I'm sure it's not just my X who does this) - "I can't find my blahdy blah."

Female - "Did you look in the drawer where we keep it?"

Male - "We have a drawer?"

Men often seem capable of doing things for themselves but not generally when there is a woman they are in a relationship with around. It's like the phrase, when a tree falls in the forest, does it make a sound? If a woman is nowhere in sight, can a man do things on his own? Obviously they've been able to. But where's the scientific study to prove that?

Anyway, all this study proves is that someone had too much time on their hands because they just broke up with their girlfriend and wanted something more to blame on her and/or to feel better about. Eh voila! "At least now I'll be smarter if I don't have someone to sleep with."

Friday, July 21, 2006

Sexy is in the eye of the beholder

What I am about to tell you make shock and horrify you but let me just say, let he or she who is without fashion sin cast the first stone(washed jeans).

There was something that occured while on vacation that to many people - much shallower than I - would have potentially been a deal breaker. For me however, it just endeared Friendster Guy to me even more. That incident folks, was the wearing of a fanny pack.

Now that you've gasped and cringed I have a confession to make. I too have been known to wear a fanny pack. And, I have been chastized vehemently for it. Mostly by my sister- that paragon of fashion and, well, bitchiness. But you know what? Sometimes you don't want to carry a friggin' purse and sometimes your pockets are just not quite big enough for all you need to carry. I am not advocating the fanny pack in all situations but in cases such as the beach or an amusement park I think they are AOK. Fuggly. Yes. But practical.

I've always been more on the practical side of fashion anyway. I lost my way slightly in the eighties when I had hammer pants. Except now that I think of it, this particular pair had even more extra fabric that could either be tucked in and made into pockets, or pulled out and buttoned in the front for some kind of fashion statement I will forever look back on in horror. So despite the impracticality of hammer pants, I somehow managed to get a pair that not only transformed but had pockets. Go me. Shudder...

Anyway, all of a sudden on vacation I see Friendster Guy packing up a fanny pack and I am just simply overcome with smittenness. I just wanted to give him a big old hug and kiss. Not only is he practical but he'd be on my side in a fashion fight with my sister! Unlike my X who probably joined in the "pick on Sassy Pants about her fanny pack" fray and then proceded to ask me to carry the camera and his sunglasses. Bah!

Practical and sexy. That's my Friendster Guy.

Sponge Bob Sassy Pants

Last weekend my Mom was telling me about an article in O(prah) magazine a month or so back where they talked about people who are sponges and take on the attitude and feelings of others around them. It can manifest itself in mirroring behaviors, emotional changes, and also physically. I am SUCH a sponge. It's why I don't like to watch movies where someone gets embarassed. I feel their pain too profoundly. It's also why I avoid negative people like the plague. I get physical symptoms because my body rejects what the sponge wants to take in. I had a negative boss several jobs back, and by negative boss I mean she-devil, and I ended up with a night guard to stop me from clenching my teeth at night.

Since my vacation, I've been feeling like a much more sedate version of myself. I still feel like myself but I lack the vim and vigor I am known for. It's funny because in my interactions with people I can see, almost as if from a perspective outside myself, that I am quieter, more thoughtful, less effusive, more calm - like Friendster Guy. As a sponge I've taken on a part of his personality. I don't see it as a negative, but as an interesting turn of events. I could certainly use a little introspection and calm in my life.

I was talking about this experience just last night with my friend N while we were waiting for a friend of hers, J. When J showed up she was full of energy and sarcasm and wit and I instantly liked her. I also instantly reverted to my more energized and bantery ways. N could certainly tell you that it was a crazy transformation. I guess I just needed to be reminded of that spark and I ran with it.

It's a fascinating phenomenon. Suck it up.

Very Deep Thoughts

My bra is making my boobs look too big today. I know this is not usually something that a person in an A, maaaybe B, cup probably complains about. For some reason though, when my bra + breast size reaches a critical mass, or appears to under certain garments, I feel frumpy and dumpy. So I feel frumpy and dumpy today. And hot. In the temperature sense of the word. Frumpy, dumpy, sweaty and clammy. With a headache just beginning to creep in. I think I'm sleep deprived. Frumpy, dumpy, sweaty, clammy, headachy and tired. With big boobs. But in a negative way.

That's as deep as it gets here at Sassy Pants Inc today people. Have a great weekend. Friendster Guy and I are off to a wedding in NY with almost my entire family - 3 siblings, one set of parents, and my niece. That should be plenty to send Friendster Guy into fetal position or screaming from the room. Actually, it should be fun. Should. Wish us luck!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

I'm a total blog slacker

Except that slacking implies laziness. It's not that I don't want to blog, it's just that I have no time. I have plenty to say. Lots in fact. But my new job is actually making me work! What's that about? Anyway, I hope to more regularly post as I settle in to my new life and the softball season ends.

By the way, I vented to my mother this weekend about my siblings and their treatment of me versus X. I then received a heart-felt apology from my little brother via email. It was very nice.

More on this and other developments later. Gotta go! Sheesh.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Family Loyalty My Ass

My family, specifically my siblings, have adopted my X into the family as if he were the prodigal son. He's been invited to every single family event until November. And I don't say November to be facetious. He's seriously honest-to-god been invited on our family trip to Disney World at Thanksgiving. And he's seriously thinking about going*.

All I have to say to that is where's my fatted calf mo' fo's?

It's to the point that one of the reasons I wasn't keen on having a big 30th birthday party with my family was because I didn't want to be the bad guy and tell them they couldn't invite X. I wouldn't have put it past my sister to ask me if she could. At least she asks. But what am I supposed to say? Saying no makes me the bitch and only makes X look better. However, I definitely would have said no to that. I don't have to now because the plans changed and I'm just going to have a series of smaller get-togethers instead. Fine by me.

It's funny, but I don't really feel all that much like celebrating. And it's not because it's the big three oh either. I'm kind of excited about this milestone. After all, I've already been married and divorced, I have a new promotion, I'm putting down roots somewhere and I have a great boyfriend.** Usually I love a good party. But maybe the "usually" part stems from the fact that I wasn't exactly happy and content in the past. I needed lots of parties and social events to distract me. Now, I don't need them so much. I don't even need to talk as much. You should have seen Friendster Guy and I on vacation. We were content to just sit next to each other on the porch or the beach and just sit. Sit and read. In the past (i.e. with X) I would have felt neglected and I would have spent the whole time with my brain on overdrive thinking I'd offended him, or he didn't love me, or he was annoyed with me, or whatever else negative I could come up with to make myself feel bad about the situation. But with FG the internal monologue is off. It doesn't hurt that the few times he's actually answered my question, "What are you thinking?" he was thinking something totally not having to do with me or even anything else we'd been talking about in the last day or so. Like, how much new rims for his car would cost, or how long it takes gum to dissolve in your stomach. These are not thoughts I need to worry about. So now, instead of thinking that silence is the worst thing ever, I am comfortable in it. I'm finding myself talking less, even in situations without FG.

The only situation I find myself uncomfortable in right now is with my family. I'm trying to win them back while at the same time thinking they should be the ones kissing my ass and trying to win me back after pretty much taking my X's side. My sister has no idea that I stopped telling her anything about the divorce. I heard one too many "Poor X" while I was venting about things. WTF?

Anyway, I'm taking half a day off the day after my birthday (which happens to be my mother's birthday) to go to my mother's company's summer outing. (I'm pretty sure that when they say "Bring your kids" they don't mean grown children who live on their own but whatever.) I really don't want to go all that much but all my siblings will be there and my X WON'T be. It's an opportunity to be with my family as me. And perhaps I may make some, "Gee, maybe you should be on my side a little more." comments.

Suffice it to say this post took the place of my thesis transcribing. Oh well. It was more cathartic than typing someone else's words.

* His father lives in Florida and he might be there for Thanksgiving anyway and he's said he'd only come spend one day with my family, specifically my niece. Thank goodness for small favors. All I have to say is I can't wait for him to explain this to whatever girlfriend he might have at the time.

**Friendster Guy kicks some major ass in his dealing with all this X stuff. He describes the entire situation in two words, "Fucked up." I'd have to agree. He did finally get to meet my sister and one of my brothers over vacation. He's very quiet so it is going to take them a little while to warm up to him. But, as god is my witness, they will warm up to him.

Motivated

I'm feeling very accomplished today.

Partly to allay my guilt at not going out running, I have been getting a bunch of stuff done since I got out of work.

- I got my haircut.
- Filled up my car. (Ok, so I did these first two on my lunch break.)
- Went to the recycling center, aka Transfer Station.
- Updated Quicken. (I'm switching from biweekly paychecks to monthly paychecks and there is going to be a little bit of a financial squeeze between now and the first. Luckily, my big bills aren't due until then.)
- Uploaded 4 CDs from the library into my computer. (Why did it take me this long to realize I could do this? Doh! Free music. All genres. Get thee to thy library and pillage their collections!)
- Found a basket for a wedding gift I need to put together for next weekend. They didn't register so I'm giving them a bunch of breakfast goodies - jams, syrup, International Foods coffee etc...Stuff they don't need to keep forever.
- Did my laundry.
- And now I'm waiting for dinner to be ready.
- Then, if the motivation continues, and even if it doesn't, I have the lofty goal of finishing transcribing the last interview for my thesis. Wish me luck!

You gotta run with the motivation when it hits you. The key is to not sit down when you get home. It helps when all your seating areas are covered in the stuff you moved out of your old office.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Hope-oscopes Part Deux

If you'd like to see if Marie Claire is as on the nose about your 2006 horoscope as they are mine, here's a link to it. Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Hope-oscopes

Way back in the blistery month of January my friend N photocopied my 2006 year long horoscope out of Marie Claire and gave it to me. I found it again while cleaning out my old office. Of all the horoscopes I've ever read, this one is the most true. Or at least it has translated itself the best to my actual life.

A few highlights:

LEO - Your life in the next 12 months: You're in a magnificent cycle that will last another year-and-a-half ... in which Saturn will lead you closer and closer to stability - emotional and financial. [So far so good - I did find a boyfriend and managed to pay off my credit cards.] This year's transitions will involve putting down new roots. [Does not having to move to follow a (ex)spouse to their next career step count? I think it does.] A major career or lifestyle change is in store, if you take some chances... [Today is day two of my new job. Check.]

Your love life: As a Leo your heart overflows with love, and you seek outlets for your generosity because you thrive on feeling needed [A truer statement there is not.] A cosmic force will pull you toward a lover who intuitively understands your needs [You hear that Friendster Guy? You intuiting my needs out there? More and more every day.] ...If you're single you will meet a lover in an atypical way [Friendster anyone?]. At first you may not feel an attraction, but be patient. [FG and I were just discussing my early issues regarding lack of chemistry the other day] This year will also be about letting go of old fantasies and tumultuous feelings so you can heal. [Check!]


Not that I place any stock in hope-oscopes mind you. But sometimes it's nice when even something silly jives with how you think you're life is going. Or maybe guides you in a direction you should go - like financial stability, or healing.

Return of the Blogger

I'm baaack. Do do do do. Do do do do...

What a lovely vacation. Probably up there in my top three. The other two being vacations where I was by myself.

Why? Because I didn't have to do all the thinking and then hear all the complaining (subtle though it may have been) as to why my choices - which should have been our choices - were bad. My X had a tendency to make negative comments after the fact. Just enough to make me feel both bad and annoyed. Like this:

Me - Which way should we go? The scenic route or the highway.

Him - I don't know.

Me - Ok, we'll go the scenic route. That way we'll avoid the tourist traffic.

Driving, driving, driving. Hit construction or a parade or a herd of cows or something else beyond my control.

Him - I knew we should have taken the highway.

There is nothing inherently bad in his statement. But when someone constantly expresses their opinion that essentially your choice wasn't good and that is why we are in this predicament (despite the fact that they wouldn't make a decision in the first place) it begins to wear on you.

Luckily, Friendster Guy did not do this. I asked a question, he pondered for a moment, and he gave not only his choice but also a reason behind it. Or even more exciting, he asked me the question first. Do you know how nice it is not to have to think of every detail every single second? And not to worry that I'm going to be chastized for something beyond my control? So what if I suggest a restaurant that isn't exactly stellar? I've never been there either. It's not my fault!

It seems I have a little bit of residual bitterness about this. But I am getting better. I'll admit that part of my feeling bad is self-inflicted. I honestly don't think my X realized he was doing this. He's a fairly passive person. I'm pretty independent. We set up a dynamic where I was the decision maker and he was whatever he was. However, my response to his comments was the part I had control over. And I usually chose to take it personally. But you know what? I think I've learned to temper my responses and not take things so personally. Or at least to recognize when I'm taking things personally and take evasive action.

And what's extra nice is that Friendster Guy recognizes I may take things personally that shouldn't be taken that way, and he has now taken it upon himself (at least once) to make sure I don't do that by saying "I know this is something that you may take personally. That was not how it was meant. Do not take this personally." Which is good because I was sitting there desperately trying not to take it personally and chanting silently to myself "Don't take it personally. Don't take it personally.Don't take it personally."

That's not much about my vacation. Suffice it to say it was very good, really relaxing, and FG and I seem to have found ourselves on the same page. That page being our surprise at how well we got along. We're thinking DC next. Go us!