Archive for August, 2008

Five for Reading

Is that a bandwagon? I’ll jump on!

Blog Day 2008

It’s BlogDay! Time to find five new blogs and spread the bloglove. I read about this early this morning and started poking around. I’m picky when it comes to blogs so I only wanted to share links to blogs that I added to my Reader. Anyway, it took me a long time to come up with five new blogs so this will be posted after midnight. Can we pretend I’m in Central time? If you want to participate, here are the rules:

1) Find 5 new Blogs that you find interesting
2) Notify the 5 bloggers that you are recommending them as part of BlogDay 2008
3) Write a short description of the Blogs and place a link to the recommended Blogs
4) Post the BlogDay Post (today, Aug. 31)
5) Add the BlogDay tag using this link: and a link to the BlogDay web site at

And now, my choices:

I think if I still lived in Virginia, I would totally stalk Le Petite Chic and make her be my friend. She likes cheese, country music, deals and now purple, and so do I.

I’m sort of a goody two-shoes, too, Simply, Me. And I love Friends.

Like Cleveland’s a Plum, I write as I talk, market stuff, have lived in Ohio, and my blog will soon be purple. (Notice a trend?)

Slynnro – my dad used to make us pick rocks from the fields, not even really as punishment. At least you can eat jalapeños. I want her to be one of my personal stylists.

Tomorrow is Sept. 1, the official kickoff to the new television season. How I Met Your Blog helped me remember some of the priceless moments from one of the best comedies out there. If you aren’t already addicted, get thee the first three seasons of How I Met Your Mother on DVD ASAP. You can thank me later. Seriously, I’ve made that show so many fans, I should get to be a guest star or something.

I hope you enjoy these blogs as much as I do. If you participated in Blog Day, please let me know so I can add more blogs to my repertoire.


The Mind Erasers weren’t mine

Random observances from last night:

  • Rain makes my hair double in size. And there’s not much I can do in a bar to contain it.
  • Drinking three Mind Erasers in 20 minutes may make you want to stand on a chair.
  • Standing on a chair will get you in trouble.
  • If you get in trouble for standing on a chair, the odds that you’ll get escorted from the premises will quadruple. The rest of your group will continue to party without you.
  • I’m much better at playing rapid-fire Quarters than regular Quarters.
  • There are other people in Philadelphia who like country music! But I couldn’t convince any of them to see Brad Paisley with me tonight.
  • I’m not as young as I once was. The next day is more painful now.
  • Potbelly closes at 9. Eating dinner earlier would have been a great idea.
  • Hot guys in suits are excellent eye candy but they can make you want to gouge out your ears with a blunt knife if they sing karaoke.
  • If you break any of the karaoke rules posted by the karaoke stage, the Karaoke Troll will rush from the other side of the bar to yell at you.
  • There’s an unbroken umbrella in a bar, just waiting to be photographed for Katie. And of course it started raining, which reminded me that I forgot it.
  • Do you know what’s really funny? Seeing someone walk onto a Septa bus carrying a case of beer.
  • There’s scuttlebutt about a potential road trip Monday to see NKOTB on the Today Show.

Did you learn any life lessons last night? Please share! If not, make it a point to learn some during this fabulously long weekend.

And! OMFG! Jonas Brothers! Squee!!!

Oh y’all. I’m totally going to Hell for what I did tonight.

I lied to multiple tweens. And they believed me. But it was for their own good.

If you set up a booth to promote nature’s most nearly perfect food, teenyboppers will think everything on said booth is affiliated with/touched by/beloved/former property of the Jonas Brothers. So when girls started asking questions like, “Did the Jonas Brothers touch this lip gloss?” I had no choice but to reply yes.

And then I might have said yes, I did meet the Jonas Brothers. No, I didn’t get their autographs. But one did kiss me. Which one? Umm… NIck! Yes. Definitely Nick. What? He’s only 15? Uh, it was on the cheek. Seriously. (Girls, I’m sorry. Everything unrelated to my job was a lie. Don’t hate me.)

And the screaming. Oh the screaming. They JBs did meet-and-greets in a little room a couple hundred feet for us. Every time the door opened and the girls caught a glimpse of a moving body inside the room, the building erupted in an ear-splitting squeal.

And then my coworker was trampled in the mob’s quest to see Demi someone walk down the hallway.

Please tell me I never acted like that.

(However, my colleague, once she pieced herself back together, sent me home with 2 pounds of cheese. Party at my house!)

He’s kind of a big deal

I hate waiting in lines. It will go down eventually and unless there’s an item or event about to expire, I usually prefer to sit in a comfortable chair until only a few people are in the queue.

When I flew to Portland, Maine, it was like an alternate universe. The parking shuttle waited for me; I looked around suspiciously to make sure I was in the right airline because the check in was vacant; and there were TWO people before me in security. Two!

I found a seat at the gate and lingered even after my zone four companions and I were paged to board. Standing in line, juggling heavy, bulky carry on items is my idea hell.

As I walked the aisle to my seat near the back, I saw a familiar face in my row. I had never had a celebrity encounter before but there, sitting in the seat next to me, was Josh Blue from Last Comic Standing. I tried to play it cool, but playing it cool for me usually means acting really snobby and ignoring the other person. But then he tucked a picture of a baby boy in the corner of his tray table to try to make conversation. Who can resist a baby? Soulless people, that’s who. So I asked if the boy was his son and thus began our two hour conversation. He told me about playing in the Paralympics and being multilingual, I told him about milking cows.

If you see a Josh Blue show and he talks about a girl who talked about milk, let me know. I think I might have earned myself a spot in a comedy routine.


I started this post a long time ago. Like so many bloggers right now, the beautiful August weather is zapping my creativity. However! I just won the I Spy contest hosted by the lovely Quirky at Quirky and Mr. Talented! That calls for a celebratory (and celebrity) post.

There’s something about Chicago

Two years ago, we browsed maternity clothes while on vacation in Chicago. My sister announced she was expecting at a Fourth of July party two months earlier and her baby bump was starting to show, necessitating new clothes.

I have to say, the outcome of that pregnancy was pretty spectacular.

On Friday, I commented to my grandmother that I hope my sister, Bim, gets pregnant soon. She and her husband have been trying for a year and it’s emotionally taxing, I’m sure, waiting for that pink line to show up every month. Grandma said my mom had just bought maternity clothes for her on Wednesday. I guess that’s what you do in Chicago, 10.5 percent sales tax be damned.

Bright and early Saturday morning, Bim called bright and early (aka 10 a.m. Central Time) to prepare us for the next spectacular outcome.

My youngest sister and I are planning to stay away from Chicago for a long time. (Or until I have to go back in two months. Given the outcomes of our last two visits, she’s not allowed invited.)

PomJob’s Excellent Chicago Adventure

I learned yesterday that Chicago PomJob is much more fun than regular PomJob.

When she found out that I was spending additional time in Chicago after our training, my colleague S invited me to her home and then we went to Wicker Park for dinner. (In case you’re wondering, the Wicker Park dog park smells like a chicken coup.) After debating the merits of delicious sangria versus a novel of beer options, we decided to head to People to introduce me to the world of tapas. How have I lived 27 years without tapas in my life? It was divine. I tried many new things: sheep’s milk cheese, goat’s milk cheese, mango chutney and spaghetti squash cakes.

Speaking of 27, as we enjoyed a bottle of wine at S’s house before dinner, the subject of age arose and S stated/questioned whether I was around the same age as her and M, right? I knew I was several years younger but as I was trying to tactfully correct her, she said, “You’re what, 34?” Um. Yikes.

After two carafes of sangria, several plates of food and great conversation, we interrupted a kickball league celebration at the bar next door. When they lined up for a game of flip cup, I almost asked to join in. After a beer, M and S said their goodbyes and I headed for the L to head back to my hotel. At the fare machine I realized I only had a $10 and a $20 and I didn’t really want to put it all on a card. The info booth doesn’t give change, so I went back outside to the Blue Line Lounge. I couldn’t just ask for change, so I ordered a scrumptious social mojito and became engrossed in the Olympic gymnastic competition.

The regular me would never go to a bar by myself. I over think it – people will think I look like a loser; I won’t have anyone to talk to. But that’s the beauty of having a few drinks first, my inhibitions were lowered. Almost immediately, the guy sitting two barstools over starting analyzing the Olympics then a couple sat on my other side and we started chatting (oxymoron of the night: they guy’s name is Little John and he’s probably 6’4″). That’s when I discovered the Blue Line has board games! At this point, Olympics Announcer tells me he’s married to one of the bartenders but he paid for his drinks and left without saying bye to her. I don’t know if I believe him but why would be lie about it?

One mojito turned into two as a group of friends came in and I pointed out the board games. I challenged them to Candyland then we broke out Taboo. Two a.m. rolled around and the bar’s lights came up. The group headed back to the bar where I had already had a beer but I took my sweet time paying my tab so I could avoid having to rebuff the advances of my Taboo teammate who made suggestive comments throughout the game.

I finally had change for the L but unfortunately it doesn’t run very often that late and P.S.? Chicago gets chilly at night. After about 30 minutes of sitting next to a woman who I am pretty sure is a prostitute and her pimp, I started pacing the platform so I wouldn’t pass out on the bench. That’s when I met a HOT surgeon who was in town to take some kind of surgeon test. And then the L decided to show up.

The only downside to lowered inhibitions is the lowered sense of safety. Is it smart to run around a strange town by yourself and talk to strangers who offer candy-flavored drinks? Probably not but I survived and had a blast. Although now I do have an awesome script in mind for an episode of “Without a Trace.”

On a Jet Plane

I’m leaving tomorrow for a week-long business/pleasure trip to Chicago so not only will posting be light to non-existent for the next week, but now is the time to brag about Shytown. Please share your favorite parts of Chicago. What’s the one (or 10) thing I need to do while I’m there? Thanks!

Free Flicks Friday

Topping my list of best inventions of the last 2000s is the DVD vending machine. Have you heard of RedBox? I first noticed it when I was living in the D.C. suburbs.  For just $1 a night, you can rent new releases with your credit card. It’s easy and economical.

Now DVDs from RedBox are FREE! on Wednesdays. Just sign up and you’ll get a text message weekly with a code you can enter at check out. Dinner and a movie just got a little less expensive and in these increasingly more expensive times, every dollar matters.

Do Good One Sip at a Time

Remember how Yoplait has that “Save Lids to Save Lives” campaign where it donates money to breast cancer research for every yogurt lid returned? Now you can drink beer to help fund research to save the quality of live of those afflicted with muscular dystrophy. Miller Lite has a “Cash for Caps” program.

“Caps for cash” sums up
Miller Brewing fundraiser

Miller Brewing, an MDA national sponsor, has stepped up its support of the battle against muscular dystrophy and other neuromuscular diseases. As part of its “Better. Bolder. Summer.” promotion, Miller will donate 10 cents to MDA for every Miller Lite bottle cap collected through Sept. 1.

Miller Lite drinkers can turn in their bottle caps to Miller retailer outlets or send them via mail. Eventually, all caps will wind up in Milwaukee in late August for Harley-Davidson Motor Company’s celebration of its 105th anniversary. Miller is the official beer sponsor of that event, which is especially fitting because Harley-Davidson also is one of MDA’s longtime national sponsors.

Bar Review

Do you remember those commercials from about 20 years ago, warning people not to drink and drive? I remember badgering my father one night because he was drinking a soda or some other beverage as we drove to our friends’ house. Alcohol didn’t play a big part in my formative years (I honestly think my first taste of alcohol was via Jello shots at my childhood BFF’s high school graduation party) and so my young mind interpreted the warnings about drunk driving to be about consuming beverages in general while driving.

My home township is dry. Like Prohibition-era dry. There was a speakeasy near my cousins’ house, but it was raided so many times they finally just ripped off the roof effectively ending the one alcohol outlet in our small farming community.

The next township south isn’t afflicted by the same antiquated laws and it has TWO! alcohol-filled establishments. I saddled up to the bar at the nicer depot a time or two and I drove past the other but never had reason, or the inclination, to stop in. Let’s just say it’s less Denim and more bar from Sweet Home Alabama without the nice glasses and bright lighting.

After a rousing high school graduation party hosted at my parents’ the other weekend, my youngest sister, her boyfriend and I were faced with a Saturday night and no plans. Light bulb! She’s 21 now, let’s go ghetto for the night.

We pull up and quickly find a spot among the other five cars in the lot. The welcoming committee is there to greet us: two women, one with bleached-blonde hair and chipped teeth, the other a 40-something wearing a bright orange tank top proclaiming BITCH.

After climbing a set of concrete stairs with a gaping hole big enough to swallow a small child between two steps, we pause to let our eyes adjust to the movie-theater level lighting and our ears adjust to the sounds of goats in pain. Karaoke night… awesome.

We began this adventure under the assumption that we’d find cheap beer and a few good laughs at the people “clubbing” in the Trails. We failed on the cheap beer; bottles are $3; mozzarella sticks $6 for 5, steaks start at $25. They don’t have no draught. The air condition was either never installed or was broken because my legs quickly stuck to the vinyl bar stool. We could have sat at a table, but the white resin lawn chairs were farther away from the prompt service offered by the bartender who puffed away on cigarettes between passing out poker chips from men buying drinks for the ladies who already had two lined up. I forget what smoke-filled bars are like, and such things make me eternally grateful for Philly’s smoking ban. The crowd started getting bigger, the smoke started getting thicker and the music started getting more unbearable. So we took our party to the other bar in town, about 10 minutes away, where the air worked, beer was on tap and cheaper and I won a free lottery ticket.

Suffice it to say we were the only patrons at bar number one that had all of our teeth.

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