Friday, December 31, 2010
The Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder by ?? (on Kindle)
Mr. Golightly's Holiday by Salley Vickers
Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh (gave up on)
The Survivors Club by Lisa Gardner (borrowed from lending library @ Bay St Station)
The Girl Who Chased the Moon by Sarah Addison Allen
Stalking Susan by Julie Kramer (borrowed from lending library @ Bay St Station)
Songs for the MIssing by Stewart O'Nan
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson (not yet registered)
The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson
The Double Bind by Chris Bohjalian
The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
One Day by David Nicholls
Home to Big Stone Gap by Adriana Trigiani
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
Wetlands by Charlotte Roche
Burn This Book and Move On with Your Life by Jessica Hurley (bookray with a twist...http://www.bookcrossing.com/forum/20/6419292)
Wild Meat and the Bully Burgers by Lois-Ann Yamanaka
Bitter is the New Black by Jen Lancaster
Learning Curves by Gemma Townley
Captain Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres
Lovers and Players by Jackie Collins
The Third Angel by Alice Hoffman (not yet registered)
The Bad Behavior of Belle Cantrell by Loraine Despres
Monday, November 08, 2010
Today I am thankful for seamlessweb.com. Because it means never having to leave the building or talk to the take-out places who never seem to understand me. An online take-out ordering service may seem like a frivolous thing to be thankful for, I know, but what can I say. Sometimes I am just a frivolous girl. Besides, seamless is the shit. If you live or work in NYC, DC or a bunch of other cities it services, and haven't tried it yet, you should. It will change your life. For reals.
Thursday, October 28, 2010
So here's the deal: my firm has had the entire top floor of this place, which is usually the first class suites for the ultra fancy and super rich, turned into a series of "war rooms." (for you non-lawyers -- a war room is really just a room where lawyers can work together to prepare for trial or some other deal). I've spent no less than 15 hours a day in the war room. Usually considerably more than that. I've never spent more than 8 hours in a row in my room, usually considerably less. And fuck, in 26 days, I've spent a sum total of maybe 8 hours out of doors. I eat my meals here. All of them. If I work out, I do it in the hotel's gym. A laundry services picks up & drops off our laundry. There is nothing you need that can't be delivered. I go outside only to get Starbucks (when we run out of coffee in the war room) or to pick up more snacks from the bodega around the corner. It's utterly miserable.
But it actually gets worse....
Because you see, while I usually like the company of the people I work with, most of them are actually cool fun people, a few weeks ago the powers that be sent us an extra pair of hands in the from of a new associate. The First Year. By the end of his first day, we thought he was a little odd. By the end of day three, we decided he must have some sort of mental condition. And by day 5, we wanted either to kill him or kill ourselves so that we wouldn't have to spend another minute more with him. The odd things he does are just too numerous and mind-numbingly irritating to list here, but here's just a few.
(1) He paces. Constantly. As if under some immeasurable pressure. But I mentioned he's new right? He's here to be a glorified paralegal. There is nothing for him to be stressed about. The most difficult task he's been given so far is print about 40 case opinions from the internet and put them in a binder in alphabetical order. It took him 10 hours. Mostly because he was pacing for 6 of them. That and he appeared to have forgotten the alphabet.
(2) He breathes loudly. Like seriously loudly. Like so loudly that I have to wear headphones and turn my ipod way the hell up so as not to hear it. It sounds like the sound people make when they come up from being under water a little too long. A long, heavy exhalation. Except he's not underwater. It's like he's forgetting how to breath. Which is not all that unbelievable since he apparently forgot the alphabet.
(3) He twirls his sideburns. Often while pacing.
(4) He's a fucking know it all. Remember how I said he was sent to us a few weeks ago? And how he's a new? Well, the rest of us have been on this case for more than a year now. Have lost our summers to depositions in London. Have given up weekends to endless investigation into the facts. Well, apparently, newbie here is so fucking brilliant that he was able to master the case in two days. Or at least that's how it would seem since he constantly has to throw his two cents into every fucking conversation we have. And its not limited to shop talk. He knows everything about everything. When he tried to tell me about italian cooking though, I had to pull out the bitch and shut him the hell up.
(5) He hovers. And copies. For example, for the first couple of weeks, I would get up from my work area and go across the room to the "snack table" to get a snack. We have all sorts of snacks here. Lawyers who work around the clock need nourishment form of junk food. That's just how it works. Except in my case, my snacks are gluten free. They're special. And oftentimes not as good as regular snacks. I dream of mint milano cookies. But I digress....I go over to the snack table, I choose my snack, and before I can turn around to go back to my work station, there he is, right fucking behind me. And while he could eat anything he wants, he doesn't. He chooses whatever snack I choose. WHATEVER SNACK I CHOOSE. Like he wants to be my new BFF or something. I even purposely bought some of the most vile GF foods out there, and forced myself to eat them, just as a test, and lo and behold, if I ate it, he'd eat it. It's actually a little disturbing. I eventually bought my own snacks and kept them right next to me to dissuade his freakish behavior. He's since latched on to a colleague. She's vegan. So apparently now he is too.
So there you have it -- as if it wasn't bad enough that we have to give up our entire lives for this thankless fucking job for more than a month (we've been here 26 days and have at least 10 more to go), we have to deal with The First Year. Who we've nicknamed FS. Because we need to be able to talk about him while he's around so as not to go utterly out of our minds batshit crazy. And FreakShow would just be too rude.
Saturday, September 18, 2010
*Tim Gunn. Gotta give credit where credit's due. ;)
Friday, September 03, 2010
So -- June/May whatever....I send in my resume. A couple weeks later, I get invited to an interview. It takes a couple more weeks to set that up but it eventually happens and it goes GREAT! They fucking LOVE me. So much so that they ask me on the spot to come in for a second interview.
The second interview, thanks to my shitty fucking work schedule, took over a month to set up but it too seemed to go really well. Left there on a high -- absolutely sure the job was mine. They told me a decision would be made soon, within a matter of days. And then...NOTHING. Not a word. Radio fucking silence.
I couldn't take it. Here I was, spending each day thinking, Is today the day I give my notice? Can I book that weekend for early October? I started thinking about what it would be like to have free time again. But after a week of nothing, I started to go a little nuts and so I make a call and I'm told "Oh yeah, so great to hear from you, we're gonna decide early next week, yada yada bullshit."
That was 10 days ago. TEN. MOTHERFUCKING. DAYS. And on each of those days the job seems less and less likely. And the plans for fall have to be canceled. And the misery that is my job starts to set back in. Sure, they haven't said no. But they haven't said yes either.
Everyone says no news is good news. But that's not particularly comforting when you're facing 18 hour days in the interim. Who cares if no news is good news if you go crazy before you can get the good news, right?
Thursday, August 26, 2010
So look, I've already done all the leg work and found a job I think I could really enjoy. And I did pretty well at the interviews too. All I need you to do is to give the powers that be a little push to offer me the job. So please, I beg of you, do me a solid Karma, would ya? I will be eternally grateful. You have no idea.
Your Friend and believer,
Sunday, August 08, 2010
-- true lovers: sexy, beautiful
-- old married social climbers: boring, perfunctory
-- rape (daughter of disgraced nobleman by loser son of social climber)
-- social climber mother jerks off power hungry rapist adult son: gross & demented
So I had this idea about writing something witty (and possibly even eloquent if you can fucking believe it) while watching this new show. And that little bit of nonsense above is my "holy shit, quick write it down before you forget it" notes. Of course, there were a couple (or three) glasses of wine in between the original thought and now, so I'm not a hundred percent sure where I was going with it.
But what I AM sure about is this... if you've read Ken Follett's The Pillars of the Earth, then you HAVE to fucking see The Pillars of the Earth on Starz. Maybe even if you didn't read the book you should check out the show (and if you don't have Starz, I'm sure there's somewhere on the web to find it). Granted, the production value ain't great in a couple of places, but the story and the characters are simply fantastic. Religion. Politics. Corruption. Intrigue. Murder. And the building of a cathedral in 12th century England.
Plus, c'mon, who doesn't like a variety of sex scenes with their evening drama?
Wednesday, August 04, 2010
Can you say hallefuckinglujuah?
Of course, the knuckle draggers behind that shitty law are sure to appeal, all the way to the Supremes if necessary, but this is a pretty amazing step in the right direction.
So thank you Chief Judge Walker. Thank you.
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
I for one have had enough. But unless I want to go from one horror show (a.k.a. big slave-driving law firm) to another, there ain't much out there these days. At least, there ain't much out there that pays enough for me to make my mortgage payment each month without having to take a second job just to get by. Which pretty much would defeat the purpose of leaving the shitty job I have now.
If only I had some money. . . I don't need much -- maybe just a few hundred grand or so (yes, that sounds like a lot, but in the scheme of things, its really nothing) -- ya know. . . enough to pay off the dreaded second mortgage, quit my life-sucking job and start my own business. The DH and I actually have an AMAZING business idea -- we've got the concept, the name, the approximate location (eastern shore of VA, baby!) and the know how. All we need now is the cash.
We'd sell our house but thanks to greedy fucking banker assholes who crashed the real estate market while lining their own already overstuffed wallets, its worth less than we owe on it. I don't have any rich relatives or know any venture capitalists and without some cash of our own, no bank will even consider giving us a loan no matter how fantastic of an idea we might have. And I don't care what anyone says, with few exceptions, the whole "American dream" of creating wealth from nothing doesn't mean shit anymore. The system is set up to keep the rich rich and everyone else just getting by.
And then we're fed a whole line of bullshit to keep us from rising up against this fucking nonsense....Unhappy with the status quo? It couldn't possibly be because you're broke or don't have the freedom to do what you want. Oh no -- because if you just did what you love, the money would follow, say some (of course, they don't tell you how you're supposed to eat and keep a roof over your head while waiting for the money to flow). Money doesn't buy happiness, say the others (as they drive around in their luxury SUVs wearing $1500 sunglasses on the way to their $20 million dollar homes). Maybe my little business idea would fail; maybe I'd hate it. But without the start up money, I'll never be able to even try.
So please, spare me the money doesn't buy happiness line of shit. The only people who really believe that are people who don't need money. Because I'll tell you fucking what -- if I suddenly had a million dollars, I'd be the happiest bitch on the fucking planet, I promise you that.
Monday, June 21, 2010
Have I mentioned lately how much I hate my job? Well, its getting worse by the day. In March, I was so bored I wanted to pull my hair out. And then April came along and I've barely seen the light of day since. On Saturday, I got shipped off to jolly olde England for the most exhausting of all my cases and all my friends kept saying how lucky I was -- how it was just sooooo coooooool that I got to travel to London on business. So cool my fucking ass. What my friends don't seem to understand, even after I fucking explained it to them, is that the only parts of London I'll be seeing are the inside of my client's offices, the inside of the law offices of our co-counsel, and if I'm lucky, the inside of my hotel room for a few hours each night. I got to see London Bridge, too, but that was only because we had to drive over Tower Bridge this morning to get to one of the offices where I'll be spending the better part of the next week (and then three more weeks in July). And yet, despite being told all this, the friends all insisted, Oh stina, I'm sure you'll have some free time to yourself; you'll be able to have some fun. And something inside me would crack just a touch more.
So I gave up trying to explain the insanity that is my job. I even gave up telling people I was traveling because I just couldn't bear to hear the, Oh that's so cool, nonsense anymore. I've almost given up on getting a good night sleep - but a little part in the back of brain remains hopeful, and I can't in good conscious say I "gave up" on sleep because that would suggest I've done so voluntarily even though the sleep deprivation at this point is more akin to torture than it is due to some undying work ethic or some shit.
And so, to keep myself from falling asleep at my computer and hitting my face on my keyboard (again) I've given up water for Red Bull. Even though the only time I ever used to touch the stuff was after a shot of Jager had been dropped in it. Which, actually, come to think of it, might not be a bad idea right about now. Because, seriously, if I'm going to be delusional from lack of sleep, might as well get a buzz while I'm at it, right? I'm not talking about getting dance-on-the-bar drunk or anything, just a shot or two to take the edge off. Bad idea? Good idea? You let me know. In the meantime, I've got to go see if Marks & Spencer unpacked the new shipment of Red Bull yet.
Monday, May 17, 2010
You see, in those 8 weeks, my work has exploded, or imploded, or whatever you call it when it gets so busy and so out of hand that you find yourself working around the clock and without end. Now granted, there are some folks in my office who have worked even more than I have in the last couple of months, but those people are fucking crazy or lack imagination. Because the hours I've put in have fucked with my life enough -- I can't imagine putting in anymore, and especially not double. Let's put it this way: I have worked 12 hours a day, 6 days a week for the last 8 weeks, but these other folks were putting in at least 15 hours a day, 7 days a week. And living at a hotel to be on call 24 hours a day. And every single one of them just put up with it. I don't know if they're afraid of losing their jobs during this shitty economy or what. But you better believe that that life will never, fucking ever, be mine. Fuck that. Although it looks like one of my cases is barreling toward that insanity as I write this....
But I plan to avoid this fate one of two ways...
One -- my preference would be to find a new job. And I'm working on that, but as you can imagine, the pickings are slim. Really slim. So, that may take much longer than anticipated. Which means I might still be stuck here when trial hell starts for my case. And if that happens, then .....
Two -- I will absolutely and without regret check myself into a psych ward. Any psych ward. Because just the thought of working 100 hours a week makes me sick, and crazy, and in need of serious medication. I figure after 4 or 5 15 hour fays, I could definitely have a nervous breakdown. Or at least fake one enough to get them to admit me, right? And if that doesn't work, then I will simply poison myself with gluten. Repeatedly if necessary. Can't work 15 hours a day if I'm puking my guts up all day, now can I?
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Backward-ass town in Mississippi (is that an oxymoron?) tells high school senior she cannot bring lesbian girlfriend as date to prom. Oh, and she can't wear a tux either. Dresses only you little bitch (I don't know they said that, I'm just assuming the bitch part). Cute little lesbian calls in the big guns (aka the ACLU) who demands the school change its policy. Shithole "agricultural" high school, instead of letting a girl wear pants, or god forbid, dance with a girl, cancels said prom. Lawsuit ensues. Yesterday, federal judge says students have a first amendment right to take whoever the hell they want and to wear whatever the hell they want to prom. And that canceling prom was a violation of McMillan's rights.
Now this is all good. Right? Right.
BUT, the judge did not order the school to actually hold a prom. The reasons for this depend on which article you read. But on this one I'll go with the ACLU's press release which says the judge isn't ordering the school to hold a prom because there is a "private" prom being held to which he "expects" Miss McMillan and her girlfriend will be invited.
This private prom, however, was set up by a bunch of fucktard redneck loser ass parents for the whole purpose of being allowed to exclude Miss McMillan, AND as of a few days ago, Miss McMillan was definitely NOT invited. And that just pisses me right the hell off.
OK, the shitty "private" event is going to be held at a furniture mart (yes, you read that correctly) so it will probably suck ass, and all LGBT and LGBT-friendly students in Mississippi are being thrown their own prom by the Mississippi Safe Schools Coalition, which prolly will be way better (um, hello, Green Day is sponsoring it! along with hottie-petottie Lance Bass), but still. The whole "lets have a prom and only straight people can come" makes me sick. And that so many people seem to have no problem with it whatsoever make me even sicker.
Well I for one hope the federal judge throws the fucking book at this homophobic little school system. And I hope the parents who arranged this willfully bigoted "private" prom all....well... I don't know exactly. I could up with a few choice words but I don't want to sound like a raving lunatic so I'll just say I hope they get whats comin' to 'em, whatever the hell that is. Fucking bigots.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
THE DRESS. Oh goddess help me.
Don't get me wrong, I know I still have plenty of time. So I'm not really stressing about finding something I like (although I'm kinda hoping I can avoid too many trips to those bridal salon joints, something about them just seem so....so....antiseptic and uptight). No, that's not it. You see, my problem, when it comes to the minor issue of what the hell I'll be wearing to my own goddamn wedding, is not finding something I like but its finding something I like that I can actually afford. My problem, quite simply, is that my tastes are WAY beyond any reasonable calculation of my budget. WAY beyond. Besides, even if I had it laying around, I'm not about to spend five or ten grand, OR MORE!, on a few pieces of chiffon that are going to be worn on a beach, for a few hours. That's just so not my style. There are so many better ways to spend that kind of money.
And yet, there in front of me, page after page, are pictures of pretty dresses and every time I find one that jumps off the page and screams "me, me, me! find me! buy me!", I look more closely and find that its a custom Vera Wang; or a vintage Dior; or, like this cutie to your left, a fucking Monique Lhullier. Granted, these lovely ladies have nothing on the most expensive dress ever purchased, but still. They're outta my league. Way out of my league. Even though they are gorgeous as hell. So now the search continues. I only hope I can find something, without too much effort, or too many pushy bridal sales ladies, that is as fabulous as a Marchesa but at a price that doesn't make my stomach turn.
Although who am I really kidding -- if I hit the numbers, I'll buy whatever the hell I want, money be damned. I'll just donate the same amount to charity to assuage my liberal guilt. Ahh, now that would really make this whole dress shopping ordeal a pleasure.
Tuesday, March 09, 2010
But even the spread (and the goody bags!) was second fiddle to the show. The company did 3 pieces, closing with Syzygy, and oh how I wish I could find a video link for that piece because there is no way I can properly describe it. I don't know what exactly it was about it, and I'm am 100% sure that other people didn't get from it what I did, but it may be one of the very best pieces of choreography I've seen in all my life. In the coat check line, for example, some dude actually compared it to Elaine dancing on Seinfeld and if he had not immediately followed that comment with "But I don't know dance so what do I know" he definitely woulda got a piece of my mind. Although at the same time I kinda see his point because the piece was haphazard and almost frenetic. But at the same time it was also controlled and organized and well, simply amazing to watch. So....he was spared.
And then, not only did I get to pig out at a buffet without worrying about throwing up 2 hours later, and then, full from super tasty food and a lovely Pinot Grigio, see some amazing dance performances, I also came home to the DVR. Where for once, an Idol contestant took on Stevie and did not disappoint. Srsly. If that chick recorded that song tomorrow, I would download it. I'd even be willing to pay the extra 30 c. that iTunes charges for "hit" songs.
But wait...there's more.... What? you ask, could top yummy food, beautiful dance, and a sweet new version of Rhiannon? One word. MamaSox. Oh yeah...my new fave singer chick rocked another one.
It was a good night.
And, hold up a minute -- turns out I CAN buy the Stevie song for the low low price of a buck 29. Sweet. Or at least I will be able to in about 4 days. Which will be Saturday. I love Saturdays.
Tuesdays rock. I bet Elaine would agree.
Monday, March 08, 2010
Friday, March 05, 2010
Last night, driving home from the train station, my car said the temperature outside was 42 degrees. A few weeks ago, when it was snowicaning all over the damn place, I would've been siked for 42. I would've been like, "Hells yeah, spring is coming, spring is coming!" But last night? Not so much. I felt like telling 42 to go fuck itself. Assuming the car was telling the truth, 42 has completely changed its tune since a few weeks back. Or rather, I suppose I expected it to be kinder than it was. But it wasn't being nice. NO. It was being a little bitch actually. That is if it really WAS 42. It sure didn't seem like the 42 that a few weeks earlier I had wished for. Oh hell no. Last night, my sweet little 42 was more like that frigid bitch 32. And that was so uncool. But I didn't want to fault 42 so as I sat there shivering, I actually yelled at my car. Out loud. "Bull-shit it's 42. You fucking piece of shit liar." I know. I know. It's not nice to swear at my car, especially since its a Toyota and is likely to go postal on my ass, but comethefuckonalready. Winter seems so long at this point that I don't even recognize my beloved 42. And that, my friends, is reason enough to think your car capable of temperaturistic plots against you.
Needless to say, if winter doesn't end soon, I may very well have to check myself in somewhere. But at least then I'll be warm. They tend to keep temperatures up in places where people wander around in bathrobes.
Friday, February 19, 2010
But anyway, let's see, in the last few months I've been, at one time or another.... busy, distracted, overwhelmed, excited, relaxed, overworked, exhilarated, depressed, proud, shocked, nostalgic, disappointed, ridiculously happy and pathetically addicted to facebook, to name just a few. It would take several pages for the details of where all that came from, so, in hopes of keeping your attention, I'll just give you the highlights. And only the good ones at that because, quite simply, I've had some vino and don't wanna make myself sad. So, here it goes...late 2009 thru early 2010, in a nutshell...
There was......playing "Champion!" at the Rocky statue during the Great Urban Race, attending the NCCC Conference in Chicago and the very next day jetting off to DC for a visit with Mr & Mr Durban Bud & a sea of rainbow flags at the National Equality March, Turkey Day at Denver Stadium with my bro & his boys (which counts as a good highlight even though the Giants even barely showed up to play that day), the annual Jamaica trip (best job perk ever!!!), White Christmas in Charlottesville with the fam (with a snow fort and everything), and then, the super-duper favoritist highlight ever, which includes a bunch of its own smaller highlights -- 12 days in Costa Rica, during what were some of the coldest days the east coast has seen all winter, to see two of our very dearest friends tie the knot and during which time we......
...got a private river tour of Cano Negro near the Nicaraguan border (including our own special little run in with some seriously heavy armed Tico cops)
...had the pleasure of getting to know Carlos (former Jersey resident and Tico-born proprietor of Chachagua Rain Forest Hotel, which you HAVE to go to if you ever find yourself in central CR) and his horses
...got to stay in one of the most beautiful rooms I've ever seen with a view there are not words for
...entered and won what we could only describe as Battle Karaoke
...watched as El Jefe, an adorable and yet somewhat terrifying monkey, climbed onto our private deck (named El Jefe, or The Boss, because, as the DH said, "well he's the boss of me" -- cause really, if there were a big ass monkey on your deck, you'd probably let him be in charge of you too)
...had drinks in an Iran-Contra era airplane
....witnessed a simple yet stunning wedding ceremony on a piece of beach that gets washed out each day and so will never again be exactly the same (which I thought was just so crazy cool)
And best of all, got to live life with no cell phones, television, blackberries or internet for 10 whole days. It was glorious. So much so that I'm thinking seriously of buying property there just to have a place to escape every so often. Because then at least I'd have an excuse for not stopping by more often......
Thursday, January 14, 2010
So, as part of this healthy addiction of mine, I am a "bookcrosser." I'm not going to bother to explain what that is -- if you are really interested, you can learn about it here.
So anyway -- on my bookcrossing page, I, like most bookcrossers, keep a list of books I've read. To avoid getting an unmanageable sized list, I do it by year and then, when the year is up, I park my list here. Not terribly exciting, I know, but its what I do. So, in case you care, here is my 2009 list:
Books read, re-read or gave up on in 2009:
Our Spoons Came from Woolworths by Barbara Comyns (bookray)
Breaking Dawn by Stephanie Meyer
Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro (bookray)
The Enchantress of Florence by Salman Rushdie
Belinda by Anne Rice (ray-it-forward)
Snow White & the Seven Samurais by Tom Holt (bookray)
Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke
The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein (bookray)
One Good Affair by Tess Stimson
Hidden Secrets by Cait London (bookray)
The Somnambulist by Jonathan Barnes
A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini (bookray)
Shopaholic & Baby by Sophie Kinsella (bookray)
The Queen of the Big Time by Adriana Trigiani
Surviving High Society by Elizabeth Marvin Mulholland
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
A Rather Lovely Inheritance by C. A. Belmond
The Knitting Circle by Ann Hood (bookray)
Drop Dead Neighbor by Saralee Rosenberg
You Don't Have to Be Evil to Work Here, But It Helps by Tom Holt (bookray)
The Undomesticated Goddess by Sophie Kinsella
Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer
Cocktails for Three by Madeleine Wickham (aka Sophie Kinsella)
Are You There Vodka? It's Me Chelsea by Chelsea Handler
My Sister's Keeper: A Novel by Jodi Picoult
When In Rome by Gemma Townley
Inkspell by Cornelia Funke