Friday, February 29, 2008

Happy Birthday!!!

I love celebrating birthdays -- even if it's not my own.  Birthdays are like national holidays - they only come around once a year and why not get excited for it?  So Happy Birthday to all the Leap Day babies!!!!

Update on our noisy neighbor situation: Our upstairs neighbor has nearly driven us to move out or otherwise not sign a lease a dozen of times.  Last night, Tom says that she was up from 2-4am singing really loudly with a band and playing music.  And then at 4:30am, I heard love-making noises.  Total ugh.  Luckily, it was short-lived, unlike all the other times.

The other thing we have noticed is that her car has been parked here practically all-day and we were wondering...does she still work?  This morning, I did a sneaky thing.  Seeing that her car was here and I just heard her get into the shower, I called our Property Management company and asked for her.  Sure enough, it was confirmed that she no longer works there.  Hoor-ray!!!  Tom and I will be going out to celebrate!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Mean girls

I met my three best friends from college during our Freshmen year. The four of us all lived in the same "suite" with six other girls. Our friendship took no more than three weeks to gel when it became clear that we were the mean girls. When I say "mean," I don't mean a bullying type of mean, but rather, we were mostly prone to giggling and gossiping about other people.

The movie that eptomized our humor was "Welcome to the Dollhouse," which was about the trials and tribulations of a 7th grader named Dawn Weiner. Poor Dawn is not only teased at school, but she is also clearly not her parents' favorite child. Yes, kids can be cruel sometimes but we didn't take this movie seriously and found it to be hilarious instead.

So that became our "test": the people who did not find this movie to be funny were not "cool" and did not become part of our tight-knit clique. And the people who did find it funny, well, you now have an "in."

Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Mommy Issue

Many mothers and daughters experience conflict and after this weekend, I guess my mother and I are no different. My mother flew in from out of town to celebrate my birthday and although it was suppose to have been a happy and joyous occasion, it resulted in a lot of tears and hurt. Not all was bad, however. These past few days are more equivalent to a root canal - painful for a short period of time, but better for your health in the long run.

I have always considered my mother and I to be close; we talk on the phone every day and we are well acquainted with each other's daily routines. We celebrate major life changes together and as an only child, our love and adoration for each other is plain for all to see. But we were too busy in our lives to notice the gradual change in our relationship that occurred sometime over the last 10 years. It's hard to say what caused the change, or even if there is a single catalyst. One major change is that we stopped living together and we both got married. And this change, although natural, has transformed us (without our knowledge) from being each other's confidants to being perfect strangers.

Sparing the reader the minute details, the problem in our relationship can be boiled down to 2 things: (1) I perceive her comments as hyper-critical, only because she's my mother and therefore they rack up double the sting; (2) she feels like I don't make time for her and that she doesn't know me anymore. My mother and I concluded that we have taken this relationship for granted and this weekend was the first time we verbally acknowledge the change. We also concluded that this relationship, like any other relationship, takes work and we made a resolution to get to know each other - the old-fashioned way - through letter writing. And at the end of each letter, we were to ask the other person one question to be answered in the next letter. I know it sounds a bit antiquated, but I think it will work. I think this will work because not only does letter writing take time and thought, but the writer often feels less inhibited in in writing than talking over the phone.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I know what you did last summer.

I don't consider myself a pro at driving stick shift by any stretch of one's imagination, but I will say...I have certainly come a long way. What is so interesting is that I've driven an automatic car from when I was 16 years old until last summer. Yet in my dreams, whenever I'm driving a car, it's always a stick shift. Last summer Tom decided that I should learn because he has a manual car and what if something were to happen to him and I needed to drive his car? Good point, but it didn't make the learning process any easier.

So it was summer - the weather was nice and I had free time in the evenings. After dinner, Tom would ask, "So do you want to practice driving?" Do I *want* to? No. To be honest, I'd rather eat ice cream, go for a walk, or see a summer blockbuster. And it wasn't like each practice session would encourage me to keep practicing. Oh no, it was just the opposite! Learning to drive stick shift (in a real life setting) was one of the biggest stressors of my life and I would dread each time I was asked to drive. There were many sessions where I would end up in tears, and asking Tom why he made me do this, not to mention that my confidence in driving any car was shot.

But Tom is a patient man and knew better. Eventually I improved, my confidence level increased, and the thought of driving his car no longer frightened me. But for the longest time I refused to drive without Tom in the car; he was like my security blanket. And now, you'll see me cruising around by myself in his little red Miata...smiling.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Sex as a Crime?!?

In a perfect world, waking others up in the middle of the night would to be a crime. Specifically, being woken up by a neighbor because of her loud sex ought be punishable by law. Those who know me inevitably know about our noisy neighbor situation. From September to December 2007 we have documented a pattern of her squeaky mattress between the hours of 1am to 5am. After several attempts of notifying her and allowing her opportunity to correct her habits, things finally came to a head and we reported her to her boss (because she also happens to be our on-site property manager. One would think that with such a responsibility, she would be a role model tenant. Nevertheless...).

Sometimes these habits of hers are accompanied by the playing of really loud music. But generally speaking, we would be woken up every other weekend when she didn't have custody of her young son, estimated age = 7. And when things got really loud, long, obnoxious, or otherwise when I'm pissed off (hey you would be too if you were woken up from deep sleep), I pound really hard on the walls and she stops.

But what I find most puzzling (aside from why anyone in their sane mind would have sex at 3 or 4 in the morning and how does one function the next day, and why she isn't ashamed that she's waking up her neighbors by her loud sex - the presumption of course is that normal people would be) is her behavior.

I have a couple of theories. Theory #1: Initially I thought she was having an affair with a married man who works graveyard shift - hence the wee morning hour lovemaking sessions. This also meant that whoever it is she's having sex with must tolerate her bizarre schedule of every other weekend. I think I have seen this fellow around - he's tall and lanky with shaggy hair. But then this theory was quickly dispelled by the fact that I saw her driving around yesterday with a man who had curly hair. Ok, so this launches Theory #2: she has multiple boyfriends. This "theory" might work if one were to picture late-night partying at bars (this explains the early hours) with a mixture of substance abuse (this explains the prolonged love making sessions).

Last night we were woken up at 4am and nearly 6am by her whoopi-making. And unfortunately, Theory #2 has been thrown out the window too because I saw her walking out to her car with not one, but TWO gentlemen! Neither of whom I have identified to be the tall lanky fellow or the one with curly hair! This leaves me no choice but to conclude Theory #3: she's a nympho who enjoys three-somes?

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Bad movies

There are a lot of "bad" movies I wouldn't mind seeing, such as "27 Dresses," "Definitely, Maybe," and "Over Her Dead Body." Of the good movies I want to see, "No Country for Old Men" is still on the list too. But with a paper due Monday and overcoming a cold, I'm pretty sure we'll just have to wait for Netflix.

On another note, this has been a weekend of junk food. It all kicked off on Valentine's Day when I came down with a cold; the most likely culprit was the guy who sits next to me in Crim Pro who was sick with a cold the week before and still showed up to class. So Tom and I got take-out Chinese and watched "No Reservations" on V-day and I ate 2 fortune cookies. On Friday night, after a day of doing our taxes, we grabbed cheeseburgers and shakes from Burgerville. Saturday we had Costco hotdogs and shared an ice cream bar. Today for lunch we had a cheese pizza from Pizza Schmizza. Have no fear...tomorrow I'm back to my usual diet of oatmeal and carrot sticks.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

My Funny Honey Bunny

As you've read, I'm on a diet (of sorts). The other day I bought these Cheetos Asteroids that come in a box of 5 packages. Each package boasts of only containing 100 calories. This box cost me between $2-3 dollars.

Tom says, "I can make you Cheetos Asteroids for cheaper." And I asked, "How?" He said that his plan was to buy a big bag of Cheetos, put 5 Cheetos in each sandwich bag, and then I'll have about 200 bags worth of Cheetos only 100 calories for less than $3 dollars.

What a smart alec.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Sugar-holics Anonymous

I am on Day 5 of no added sugar and please allow me to emphasize that this is no easy feat. Not eating added sugar means I can eat things like fruit, prunes, raisins, yams, some juices and the like because they contain natural sugars. The items that have been eliminated are ice cream, cookies, cakes, chocolates, and all of the other stuff you dream of. I will have to say that I'm not a sugar-purist. A lot of things contain "sugar" or high-fructose corn syrup and I have not stopped consuming ketchup, soy sauce, barbecue sauce, or jam, although I don't over-indulge in these items either.

An excellent question would be, why am I such a masochist and doing this thing to myself? First, I have noticed that my metabolism started slowing down my Freshmen year in college (coinciding with also an excess amount of dorm food), but that since then I have (a) been in denial about it, and (b) have had difficulties in keeping off the excess poundage. I also recognize that some might think that I'm somewhat vain because I am already small-boned and quite petite and fit into a size 6 for most brands, but the point is, I'm greedy and I want to lose more weight.

Second, and a minor point, is that avoiding foods with added sugar also helps stabilize your mood and energy level. I've noticed less of a sugar dive an hour or two after lunch. This is definitely a nice "plus" to the fact that you are depriving yourself of all things yummy, but like I said, I am doing this to lose weight primarily.

One thing I discovered about myself (and my body) is that sugar sticks to me like glue. This reminds me of a quip I heard on NPR many moons ago about Vienna's famous Sacher Torte - "a moment on the lips and a lifetime on the hips." So when I stop eating sugar, I notice a difference in the way my pants fit immediately (although to be honest I have not really tried cutting other foods like meat, dairy, flour, or fried foods).

Unfortunately, though, I think your body needs sugar and when you deprive your body of one thing (i.e. sugar), it automatically tells you that you want some of the other stuff like salty chips or greasy fries. So here I am, eating potato chips at 9am in the morning - ah, the cornerstone of every nutritious breakfast.

Sunday, February 10, 2008


As mentioned already in the description of my blog, I have married a terrific man. He is perfect in almost every way - for example, when Tom saw that my shifter was not lighting up (the thing that tells you what gear you're in), he removed my entire shift counsel and replaced the light for under $2 (cost of 2 light bulbs). Needless to say, Tom is a very good mechanic.

However, no one is perfect. With much hesitation, I am saying that Tom needs a little help in the gift-giving department. I hesitate in saying this because I have loved all of the things he has given me - not for the item itself but for the thought. For example, after a long weekend away from each other, Tom bought me some New Balance socks (my favorite brand) as my homecoming gift. When I told him that most men buy their wives flowers when they pick them up at the airport, Tom said, "Why didn't you tell me?" And even though these socks are the type I usually get I wear them with pride because they were gifts from my husband who thought of me.

As Valentine's Day and my birthday are fast-approaching, Tom keeps pressing me about what I want. I have not told him in these exact words, but the truth is, I don't know what I want. And this is also intrinsically linked to the fact that we now share the same bank account so I do not have any interest in watching the balance go down. The other part is, and I hope Tom will this learn someday, the secret to gift-giving is the surprise element. In truth, the sine non qua of giving gifting is surprising the receiver.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Hello! Hi! Hola!

Welcome to my blog!!! I've been wanting to create a blog for months now! Ok, maybe weeks. But what inspired me is that my husband's blog is Coffee Cup with Tom and so I wanted to imitate his (hehe). Ok, House is waiting impatiently for us. Gotta go!