Me: I want to go one weekend with friends and another weekend alone
Laura: Yeah that sounds like something you would do
Me: What’s that supposed to mean?
Laura: You like to do things alone. You’re very good at being alone
Me: Thanks. Are you saying I should get used to being alone?
Laura: Mel, you’re very good at being alone, and you should be prepared to be alone for a very. Very. Long time.
For several weeks now, the one thing I wanted was to just sleep in on Saturday morning and do absolutely NOTHING for a good day. But there was always something planned, and I would choose a day with friends over a day alone any day.
BUT FINALLY. Suddenly it was Friday and I had not made plans with anyone. Usually this would freak me out and send me into a minor bout of depression, but this time I was SUPER excited. I was going to do SO MUCH this weekend, and by so much, I mean a LOT of inactivity to dull my brain into content. I planned to watch a shit ton of tv in my bed. Read in bed. Eat in bed. Do the same in non-pajamas, but still in bed.
The long story short is, I had a fantastic weekend and accomplished all of these non-accomplishments!
Saturday: I woke up at 8:30. FANTASTIC! I had a minor urge to pee but suppressed that feeling so I could continue lying in bed. I watched 30 Rock, The Office and Grey’s Anatomy. Then it was 10:30 and I decided to get out of bed. Walked very quickly to the bathroom because I was about to piss my pants. Luckily, made it without wetting myself. Then I returned to my nice warm bed. It was raining outside, which is PERFECT weather for a do-nothing day. I talked to Eric a little online and told him he’d better go on an impromptu trip to Vegas. He signed off saying that he just might. I felt a pang of sadness that I couldn’t be in SoCal to go on a spur of the moment trip and started to doubt my plans to sit around. (As I write this, I realize how I’m probably the only person who has to plan to do nothing).
But then I … actually at this point I have no idea what I did next. I think I watched a lot of random episodes here and there. Pilot episode of Parenthood, random episode of Cougar Town, AWESOME episode of Vampire Diaries … oh I know. I ate three potatoes. These are the same potatoes I bought in OCTOBER. I seriously eat three potatoes per month out of that 10 lb bag. I have about 12 left, so I guess I will be eating my last potato in June.
Sometime around 3, I finally left my room and drove to Palo Alto. I went to use my groupon at Photograph & Frame, which was about to expire at the end of the month. I’m framing my Seattle poster. The poster that cost $22.55 cost me $135 to frame. And it would have cost $235 to frame were it not for the groupon. Isn’t that ridiculous?! I’ve never gotten anything framed before. It was actually a pretty fun experience to get such a personalized service. The lady was super nice and very understanding of my situation of “I live in a place I won’t be permanently living in … I have no furniture that I plan to keep and I have no idea what color walls my future home will have. Can you find me a frame that fits my personality?”
So that should be done in about a week! I’m just very … very slowly gathering pieces for my future home. I think one day, whenever I buy that house, I will lay out all the things I’ve bought over the years and realize that none of them go together.
I walked back to my car but it was such great weather I just kept walking. It was overcast, very brisk air, and drizzling. I was wearing boots and had my umbrella and had just uploaded a bunch of new music onto my iPod, so I was pretty set. And I was in Palo Alto, so obviously, surrounded by nice houses. I ended up walking around for about an hour, just zig zagging around.
OMG. I just google mapped where I was and realized I was a BLOCK away from facebook offices! Not that I care. But it would have been nice to stumble upon it. MAN. Missed opportunity.
I saw chickens on my walk! And met the man who owns the chickens. It is a lot more awkward to take pictures of things in Palo Alto. I get the sense that here, people are much more aware of strangers walking around their neighborhood. I felt like I was always being watched by someone.
Stranger I met: You’re pretty brave to be wearing a Cal sweatshirt in these parts!
Me: Yeah well … I don’t have any other sweatshirts. And it’s a pretty cold day
I was wearing boots that day so I couldn’t walk for very long. I got back to my car an hour later and went to my next destination – Cafe Barrone! I had yelped cafes to read in around Stanford, where I assumed I would have the best chance of finding a cute cafe with lots of seating. Yelping cafes was kind of crappy because it just reminds me of how superior Seattle is in coffeehouses. That sounds like a given, but it’s still depressing to be proven correct. I was choosing between Cafe Barrone and Coupa Cafe, and chose Barrone because it sounded more spacious – therefore I could read there longer. Turns out it would have been great to read at – if it were sunny and light out. It was super dark in there so I probably ruined my eyes a little bit trying to read there. I ordered a mexican mocha and it was pretty good. Not as legendary as the first time I had a Mexican Hot Chocolate at El Diablo Cafe but not horrible. I’d go back!
What I read: Suck It, Wonder Woman by Olivia Munn. The book itself is a very quick read. Entertaining with a surprising number of stories about several anonymous perverts in Hollywood. And something I didn’t know beforehand – it’s a FLIP BOOK! At the right corner are images, when flipped, of Olivia Munn dancing! All great books are flipbooks. Example: Animorphs. There were several dumb typos in the book though, so it felt like I was reading someone’s blog. I was kind of neutral to her before but she gained a few points after reading the book. She has since lost those points and then some since Laura sent me a link with pictures of her and Matthew Morrison on a “date.” Matthew Morrison is on my Hollywood Dislike List. He joins Matthew Broderick, everyone from Entourage, Jonah Hill, Jude Law and Chad Lowe. I feel like there was another pathetic looking male actor but I can’t think of who it is at this moment.
THEN drove to Belmont for rock climbing at Planet Granite. Super excited to see that the gym was practically empty, as it was a Saturday night and the gym was about to close. And. I guess most people have friends to hang out with at 7pm on a Saturday night. Knocked out a couple V1s and came SO CLOSE on two V2s. If only I were an inch taller or a bit more daring, I could have completed them.
Went to Laura’s afterwards and I felt like I had done so many things that day that hanging out at Laura’s feels like a completely different day. I forgot what we watched. I had one of her mom’s chicken and it was sooo juicy. Sadly, that was the first warm food I’d eaten since Monday. Oh, on Friday after work, Laura and I went to Five Guys. I ordered a hamburger. It turns out, when you order a hamburger at Five Guys, what you really get is a double burger. An actual regular hamburger is called a little burger. Are Americans this fat? That a regular hamburger requires two patties?
I did not like Five Guys very much. I was expecting a BJs style restaurant or Red Robins. I wouldn’t even call it similar to In N Out, because In N Outs have a cleaner vibe. It’s like a Burger King. There were a lot of kids. The bun is kind of crumbly, and in my experience, the only time bread is ever crumbly is when it’s stale. It smelled weird too, whenever I took a bite out of it.
We went to Pinkberrys after. I ordered a medium, Laura got a mini. Basically I ate twice of everything she ate that night. My body was unprepared for it. This is literally what I ate 3 of 5 days last week.
Breakfast: two oranges
Lunch: either an apple or handfuls of honey nut cheerios
Post-work ravenous snack: six little pieces of chocolate
Dinner: ten dumplings
It’s amazing that I didn’t pass out from lack of nutrients. Clearly the reason my body can survive on so little calories is because I don’t do ANYTHING. Just sit in a chair all day. I do feel thinner! But also, like my muscles have atrophied.
Sunday: Woke up at 8:30 again. DID NOTHING. Again! I watched Friday Night Lights in bed for several hours. Got up and made scrambled eggs with english muffin. Watched more Friday Night Lights. I was all ready to go rock climbing but before I opened the front door I realized I didn’t feel like rock climbing at all. So I just sat in my room and watched another episode of Friday Night Lights. Great stuff! Around 1 I drove to Laura’s and me and her family went to Costco. I bought a TON of bagels. 24 of them. As I told Laura, it’s a normal amount of bagels! People just don’t realize that I’m buying them for a single person.
We were supposed to go the library but it was fucking closed! I really needed to get some books too. So I was pretty pissed. We just walked around the nearby park then went to 99 Ranch and then Safeway. OMG GUYS. Ben and Jerrys ice cream is ON SALE. 2 for $6!!! I have waited for this moment for MONTHS. I realize now when the last time I bought Ben & Jerry’s was. Back in April in SD. Ben and Jerrys is cheaper in socal than in norcal. I don’t know why. Anyway, I refuse to buy Ben & Jerry’s until it is on sale, 2 for $6. Usually it’s $3.49 a pint. I check Safeway ads EVERY week in the hopes that it will go on sale. It hasn’t been on sale in FOREVER. Even Haagen Dazs has been on sale, 2 for $6, like twice this year. But FINALLY. I was able to save fifty cents on ice cream this week because it went on sale!
Me: OMG where is it?! They don’t have mint chocolate cookie! WTF
Laura: Just wait, I’m looking for it
Me: No. They don’t fucking have it. I can’t fucking believe this. They don’t have fucking mint chocolate cookie. UGH now I have to go to another safeway! This is a sign. That I have to buy four.
Laura: No look here it is! The last two!
So they’re sitting in my freezer! I’m actually not even craving ice cream. I just know that at some point this month, I will be. And when it comes, I will be ready for it.
We watched more tv. Clueless, which I’d never seen. Fell asleep during it of course. No idea what happened. Well I have a general sense but ask me in a week to describe the movie and I will say “I don’t know. Paul Rudd is in it and he looks worse than he does now.” Star Wars Episode II was on, so I made Laura summarize the entire series for me.
Me: Wait, does Star Wars take place before, after or during our time?
Laura: I don’t know. It doesn’t matter when it takes place! Oh wait. No, I do know. “A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…”
*after giving a three minutes summary of Episode 6*
Laura: omg wait. I forgot to mention. So, Yoda dies.
Shit writing this took an entire hour. Now it’s midnight! I hate the idea of work. Work itself isn’t terrible, I actually enjoy life when I’m sitting there doing work. But the idea of GOING to work. Makes me hate life.
Good night! Watch VAMPIRE DIARIES GUYS! So good.
This will mean nothing to you guys since you don’t watch the show, but one day I’ll reread this, click this link, and if it hasn’t been taken down, I know I’ll end up going on a TVD binge and watching a season in a day. This is such a perfect song for this scene. and speaking of … little miss katherine
There are only three more episodes left for Greek and if it continues the way fourth season has been going, at the end of it, I’ll be calling this series my most favorite series of all time. It seems crazy to think that of all the television shows I’ve ever watched, a relatively unwatched and unacclaimed teen drama on ABC Family would take this title, but so it is. Despite being pretty much a PG-13 show, it seems to have the most honest portrayal of college and life than any other show. I seriously love every character – ok, maybe Evan is more on the side of “ok some days, hateful the others” – for they all have their own flaws coupled with some lovable traits. The show has great continuity, perfect zingers and pop-culture references that don’t seem forced and are perfectly written for the speaker, awesome music selection (I will always associate The Temper Trap’s Sweet Disposition with Greek over 500 Days of Summer), and the episodes are all well-balanced with forward moving plot and moments of hilarity, romantic drama, friendship tensions and relationship building. The crazy thing is at the end of the fourth season, I can see how each character has changed over their college experience, yet their core character remains in line the pilot.
That’s my little review. Now I’m going to rewatch the last 16 minutes of this episode (4×7 Midnight Clear) before I fall into a deep slumber.
I wonder what the point of disabling embedding is. What do they care if I watch it on youtube or off someone’s site?
Funnier, but difficult to follow if you don’t know any of the character names.
I’m basically choosing whether to blog or to watch an episode of something Valentines-Day-like (I was going to go for either an episode of Alias or Parenthood). Blog it is!
Friday: was my last day at my main client in Santa Clara. I don’t know when the shift happened, but I went from disliking my life to really enjoying work. As Laura said, it is the people. It sounds like such a cheesy answer when someone says “the thing I love most about work is the people,” but I guess in auditing, liking who I work with has a pretty big impact on how excited I am in the morning. I really like my team and was pretty sad to realize that I would be rolling off. It felt like the last day of middle school / high school. I hope I’m not heartbroken each time we wrap up a client.
My busy season gift for having the most genius points (HAAA I don’t know how I came away being the winner but I hope that comes up in my performance report) was a cup that has an image of Pac Man appear when hot water is poured in. I was choosing between that and a pair of chopsticks that look like lightsabers, but I figured I’m more sentimental over mugs.
Saturday: drove up to SF with Laura fairly early in the morning.
– bouldering and belaying: Laura’s sister gave me a pass she had bought for Planet Granite since she went to India and wouldn’t be using it before she returned. So I used three of the four passes with Kristen, David and Laura. Exciting! Except Laura refused to complete any courses. At one point I forced her to watch a little boy, literally HALF her size, climb up the easiest course in the gym. I told her, “just watch this kid and follow his moves!” And 1/3 of the way through, he just gave up, and I was like COME ON KID. He was doing so well. We also watched this young girl make it all the way to the top and I was like “SEE! Even she did it!” and when the kid got back onto the ground, an employee who belayed her asked “so was it fun?” and she was like “NO!” and I was like, “ok Laura, don’t listen to her.”
Me: Laura, you can do this course
Laura: Ok. No wait … there are children. Children don’t laugh in their heads, they laugh out loud.
– brunching at Brenda’s: We left the gym and drove to Brenda’s. It’s 4 miles away. It took thirty minutes to get there. We were at the restaurant for three hours. I had to move the car three times and pay $5 in quarters. I. Love. SF. Sarcasm. It was delicious though. We met up with ANDRIA!!! who flew in from NY for the weekend, Ray, and Ray’s two friends. Due to my poor planning and the crappy wait time inherent to all SF brunch places, Kristen and David had to leave 😦
Brenda’s is like New Orleans brunch. It has a pretty cute interior. I split granny smith apple beignets, a oyster/bacon omelette and bananas fosters french toast. The french toast was pretty awesome. We waited over an hour to get in, and I know that for a fact because we all had to move our cars before we even got in. I had a great moment of bitchiness when one of the hosts came over and in a kind of annoyed tone, asked if two of our friends had arrived yet, thinking we just sat down without them (Andria and Ray were reparking their car). I replied “oh, they’re moving the car,” and he gave a brisk nod and walked away while I muttered under my breath “because it took a fucking hour to get seated.”
– beach bonfire: Since lunch ended way later than we expected (at like 4), Andria and Ray took off because they were eating Roy’s in a few hours. Laura and I drove to Ocean Beach for Kristen’s birthday beach bonfire gathering! I have not been to Ocean Beach in such a long time. As Feburary comes to an end, I’m starting to be able to say “it’s been a year since…” for a lot of things. I usually have no memory of what happened over a week ago, but I can really easily split up the year 2010 into the months I was in a certain place, and it makes for a lot more nostalgia and reminiscing.
Anyway, I tried to find parking but ended up going down the entire lot and finding none. I turned onto the street, figuring I could turn left and retry. Instead I ended up driving like two miles down the side of SF because it was impossible to turn left. FINALLY hit a left turn signal and drove back up. I turned back into the parking lot and by pure luck, someone had left right when I turned in. Then we walked down the beach and spotted Kristen, or rather, the very tall David. Yum yum fun!
Ocean Beach is way prettier than I remembered. But the sand is REALLY dirty. Clearly too many people are tromping around that beach. That day, it occured to me that it’s been a while since I’ve seen really overpopulated beaches. It kind of surprised me to see the sand with so many footprints, when I’d gotten used to super smooth patterns.
Laura and I left after the sunset and drove back to South Bay.
Me: Laura, you made a friend today! Good job! Laura: a non-Asian too! That’s even more of an accomplishment!
Before going home, I ended up watching Jay Chou and some Chinese weekend talk show. One of those fun ones with captions everywhere. It occurs to me that I have no idea what anyone is saying on these show, but the entertainment value is universal. Asian talk shows are like the equivalent of I Love Lucy episodes.
Me: I love Wang Lee Hom!
Laura’s mom: Really?! What song do you like?
Me: *singing a line of Kiss Goodbye*
Laura’s mom: You’d think that if that were your favorite song, you’d know how to sing it better
Sunday: went to Berkeley, essentially to eat Gregoire’s, then returned to watch 6.5 hrs of Grammy-related television. Let’s see… Laura and I left for Berkeley around noon and met up with Andria and Ray at Gregoire’s. Both of us pairs ended up ordering the same, 1) Grilled flank steak with St André cheese & truffle on sweet roll and 2) Lemon & dill house-cured Scottish salmon with black pepper cream cheese on toasted focaccia. I also got a blood orange bread pudding which was DELICIOUS. I am having a thing for blood oranges lately.
What is it about Gregoire’s that makes me SO dehydrated after? I wish they would just have one little tap water faucet in that restaurant. We then left and remet up at 4th St. Andria and Ray left pretty soon after and Laura and I drove back to South Bay after we parted ways. The sun was setting soon and the drive down the 880 was really gorgeous with SF in the background.
Laura and I started to watch the Grammy’s, which I haven’t watched since I was in middle school. We started with the PRE-PRE red carpet, which is way too early to start an awards show, I’ve realized. I was already tired of watching tv at 7:30, which was half an hour before the actual awards show started. Then we looked at the guide and realized the awards show was freaking THREE and a HALF hours long. I feel like even the Oscars aren’t that long. Ridiculous! So I told myself I’d leave around 8:30…
But somehow we ended up watching the ENTIRE thing. I started the night thinking “I don’t really want to see any of these performances” but then I would watch one and think hey that was pretty good. Then they would list off the next set of acts and I would think “well, I guess the next one is worth seeing. But only that one.” But each time I watched one performance, the upcoming performance sounded pretty good too. That must mean the Grammy’s were pretty good!
Some of my favorite moments: both of us assuming Mary J Blige was part of the Aretha Franklin tribute and realizing that it was another black singer about a minute before their ten minute performance ended; listening to Laura’s mom and aunt comment on just about EVERYTHING during the show; Bruno Mars singing Grenade doo wop style; Laura’s aunt handing out her only complimentary comment for the night to Dianna Agron’s dress; playing with Laura’s mom’s wig
Laura: hey you guys must be pretty tired! You haven’t said anything in a while
Laura’s mom: I actually fell asleep
Laura: Hey! Clay Matthews!
Grammys announcer: And presenting something something, Lea Michelle and Clay Matthews!
Laura (in a quiet shock): oh my god, I can’t believe I recognized Clay Matthews over Lea Michelle
At first I was most excited for Lady Gaga’s performance, then that proved to be rather uneventful. I wish that they could have had even more collaborations though. I feel like for the Grammy’s, you have all these artists who aren’t typically in the same place at the same time. Make the most of it! I love performances like Eminem and Elton John where you have two people paired up that you would never see otherwise. The last hour, I was pretty much just waiting to watch Arcade Fire perform so I was REALLY disappointed that they sang Month of May (as I’m sure everyone else who knows Arcade Fire was). I don’t think it’s a coincidence that it’s the ONLY Arcade Fire song off The Suburbs album that doesn’t have a single play on my iTunes. They could have played SO many other songs.
But fast redemption when they played after winning their Grammy! It must feel so great to spontaneously play a song on stage after winning the big award of the night.
Laura’s aunt: What other food is there to eat? I want to go home soon. I don’t want to watch this anymore.
Monday: Valentine’s Day! Since I’m on my Redwood City client, I finally went to the Belmont Planet Granite, which I haven’t been to since the last time I was on this client. Today was the best rock climbing workout ever – I was pretty sweaty afterwards. To be honest, I’m not 100% sure I was sweaty because of stenous exercise, I’m pretty sure 75% of it was due to my being sick. No matter! I did freaking 10 V0s AND 10 V1s! Totally made my day. I do think Belmont grades much easier than the other Planet Granite’s though. In my opinion, in level of difficulty it goes Belmont, SF, then Sunnyvale. Sunnyvale bouldering walls are much higher and I feel like they make you leap for jumps a lot more often.
Gah. It’s 11:30. Since Greek’s not on yet, I guess I’ll go to sleep.
Holy crap it’s February. Not only is it February, it’s a week into February. I feel like Feburary 1 is the day when people all around the world realize that their New Year’s resolutions were forgotten. Unaccomplished: cooking once a week. Modified: reading a book every week to reading a book every two weeks. In progress: becoming good enough at rock climbing to finish most V1s on the first try. Accomplished: not pissing away the weekends.
I’m giving up a night of reading my book to write up this blog. So instead of reading and expanding my knowledge, I will give you something to read and probably diminish your intelligence. I’m sure there are better things for you to be doing right now. Thank you for your time though.
I just pulled out a giant dustball from under my I key. It’s a little gross and at the same time, I’m tempted to rip off all of my letters right now to give this laptop a thorough cleaning.
So this weekend I drove up to Berkeley on Saturday morning and went hiking in Mt. Diablo. But THIS time I was not a loner. I went with Caroline, her roommate Elena, and her friend Milli! So there are PEOPLE in my pictures this time! Our hike was not too long but it was fairly steep so I still got quite the workout. Mt Diablo is great for outdoor rock climbing, which I do not do, and it has an incredible viewscape of the Bay. You can see way, way out … according to a sign, I was looking out to ~150 miles and could make out Sacramento. Craziness! It was a pretty clear day which was great. It’s surprising how much green is in the Bay.
I’m glad I did this hike with friends because I would have been pretty crabby to be trekking in hot and dry trails alone. I had only eaten a bagel the entire day, so when the hike was over, I was STARVING. We spent most of the drive back talking about ridiculous(ly dumb) teachers in high school and how a student who did great work in the beginning of the school year could get away with a lot more later than someone who had already proven to be dumb.
Brian and Josh joined Caroline and me for dinner at House of Curries. I don’t like how House of Curries makes subpar palak paneer when they are busier. The spinach is not cooked as thoroughly so it’s not as delicious. I need to branch out and experiment with more curries. From the snippets I heard, Caroline and Josh talked about bio the whole night and Brian and I talked about who knows what. HAHA
Then we did our “omfg I’m soooo full … we should go on a walk … to Ici’s” post-dinner tradition. I’m SO glad I did because OMFG GUYS. THEY HAD EARL GRAY ICE CREAM THAT NIGHT. Every time I call Ici’s (and I call an embarassing amount of times), I am always waiting to hear if they will have Earl Gray. They never do. BUT TODAY! Some flavor ran out and their back up was Earl Gray!!!! They had so many good flavors that night – coffee and cookies, candied grapefruit creme bulee, honey orange blossom, tiramisu … amazingness.
Walked back to the apt (my old apt) and played Balderdash and Last Word for a little bit before Jon gave me a ride back to Caroline’s 😀
The next morning Caroline, Elena, Pat and I went rock climbing at the Berkeley Ironworks. I swear, I can’t remember a time when I was so excited for something the next day. It was as if I were a little kid going to bed, knowing that I’d be going to Disneyland tomorrow. I’m fairly certain at least one of my dreams was rock climbing related. I like how Berkeley’s bouldering walls are shorter, like SF’s Planet Granite. I like more technical walls – plus shorter walls mean you generally don’t have to leap for holds, which is my biggest weakness in climbing. I did some top roping which was fun. Had to take my belay test again since I’m not a member with Touchstone gyms. But my tester said to me afterwards “you’re a good belayer! Next time just tell them you’ve already taken the test” and I was like OMG someone thinks I’m good at something! Brian joined us a little later so yay! He also brought me some homemade hummus and it was delicioussss. I’ve always wanted to make hummus.
We ended up staying at the rock climbing gym for 3 hours. The irrational part of my brain kind of wants to just get a membership for Touchstone Climbing gyms too, so I could have access to five more gyms, but that’d be ridiculous. I do really want to go to the Belmont gym again, but I have no real reason to until I’m back on my Redwood City client again.
After that I drove back to the South Bay and picked up some guac for Superbowl at Laura’s. Made it just in time for kick off. Ate SOOO much guacamole. To change up the tastes, we ate frozen yogurt and kiwis. The Trader Joe’s frozen yogurt is not that great the first bite, but if you continue eating it, it grows on you. I don’t know why.
Left Laura’s after Glee was over. Verdict: Superbowl, ok. Commercials: no better than any regular commercial. Half time show: surprisingly captivating. One day guys, I’ll have a kick ass Superbowl party. Once I have a place of my very own, the ability to grill, and a large enough group of friends.
Today I scheduled my first vacation time. It is really weird to think I have such control over my work schedule (assuming I schedule this before I’m locked in with a client). I’m no longer subject to whatever some administrative office decides is an appropriate school break. I make my own breaks! I’ve also used up half of my annual vacation time so … it’s a weird mix of feeling free and restricted at the same time.
So I have this bad, mentally unhealthy habit of craigslisting real estate in Seattle when I’m super bored. I recently saw one (I’m sure that link is going to die within a few days) and when I looked at the picture, I thought I have totally seen that house before. So I google mapped it, and … this is where the house was in relation to where I lived in Seattle.
Craziness! I used to pass that house whenever I would walk back from running around Greenlake. It would be my dream to buy a house near where I lived in August. I am always amazed by how cheap the houses in Seattle are.
Oh god it’s 1:30. I’m going to hate myself tomorrow morning.