Friday, August 30, 2013


Today I was able to have the first proper chat with my dear friend Ashley since she got back from her summer in Central America.  With the two of us it could go anywhere, so I wanted to document the subjects broached during our 84 minute conversation this afternoon. In order:

bird poop
Nicole Richie
bad music
Miley Cyrus
creepy old guys
boyfriend (past tense)
how much we love Jen
boyfriend (present tense-hers)
jolly ranchers
Groucho Marx

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Training Wheels

My brother got some training wheels for our little brother and I played deliverer bringing them back to the Westside after trivia on Tuesday. When I told my father that I had them, he was excited and we arranged for a time for me to swing by his house to drop them off. I then said, "Why are you even putting training wheels on Isaac's bike? They're a crutch. You're enabling him. The most efficient way of him learning to not fall is by falling. I never used mine. Remember, I made you take them off, like, immediately?"* My dad was chuckling at how ridiculous I was being, saying, "I'll think about that," in a way that meant of course he wasn't going to even consider not putting training wheels on Isaac's bike. I then said, "I have no idea why I'm not married with a family of my own." My father laughed heartily at this.

Why is that funny, dad?**

*I really never used my training wheels. They were installed on my bike, but I hated the noise they made so I learned really quickly how to make them not touch the ground. That said, I was four and have no idea how long those things actually stayed on my bike. But that didn't stop me from being ashamed of them from day one.

**Reem, that was just for you.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Zen and the Art of Wallpaper Removal

For the better part of the last week I have been spending time at my grandparents' home of many, many years removing wallpaper. Some of these wallpapers have come down very easily, some...not so much. I am a huge proponent of wallpaper! huge. Even though I've spent about ten hours on a ten foot length of wall. (Concentrated chemicals will be applied to the multiple coats of wallpaper tomorrow. It is such a beast, I keep thinking, "No wonder grandma didn't remove this before repapering!") This has been an interesting experience.  Earlier this summer, through various refinishing projects done for other people, I realized that I really only like doing DIY stuff for myself. I know this sounds so selfish...but...well, it is. But hear me out. As I was refinishing these super old chairs for some people I know, for example, I realized, this is not fun, even though I charged a lot. I usually really like building or finishing stuff. But these chairs--even though they had great bones and turned out to be pretty gorgeous--I just really hated most of the experience. (Another potential occupation crossed off the list.) But this wallpaper removal, I haven't hated.

This beast of a room has actually been fairly cathartic to conquer. I have hated the top layer of wallpaper since I was a very small child. My brother and I would stay in that room on the weekends when my dad would come back from Minnesota to visit. I hated that wallpaper, but I was also terrified of my grandparents, so I tried to avoid them by staying in that room, (surrounded by dusty blue peacocks and beige flowers) as much as possible when we were at the house. It is just not my taste. Not like the gorgeous cream damask that I was sad to take down from the entry, or the gorgeous blue floral that I've convinced my entire family to let stay up and update the rest of the master bath. Well done there, Grandma. But most of the time spent taking down what I have managed to get down thus far was spent - I wouldn't say enjoying what I was doing, but I was happy to be helping people I love. Also, I think it really plays well in to the type a aspects of my personality. The more OCD/perfectionist I am about the wallpaper, the better.

As an added bonus, my grandfather is super impressed by how quickly I'm getting stuff done. Tonight when my father and I brought him a chocolate malt he said, "You know you've got the greatest daughter in the world!" What?!? I've really come to appreciate my grandfather over the past year and a half since my grandmother passed away. We talk about movies a lot*, and even joke about a certain non-blood-related relation that we both aren't particularly fond of. It has only taken my whole life, but I finally have made some headway. So there's that too.

Am I still afraid to touch anything in the house? You betcha. My grandmother might be deceased, but it is almost Christmas card season and I'd like very much to not be trashed this year.

*He has created a searchable database of all of the films he's seen since at least 1971. When I heard this I was disappointed I hadn't thought of doing that myself.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Weber Cooks

At a family dinner the other night, Ke$ha came up in conversation as Ke$ha is wont to do. (I have often said that the Venn diagram of my brother and I as far as tastes go, the only thing in the common area is The Muppets. When you throw our cousin Jill in to the mix, the common areas are The Beach Boys and Ke$ha.) As the conversation progressed, Jill was sending the lyrics of the song 'Stephen' to her friend Stephen, and Stephen had no idea what was going on. My brother said, "Oh speaking of that song, have you guys seen Weber cooks?" When we all said 'no', we opened up my laptop and watched in horror. Here was everyone's favorite Ke$ha song, being the sound track the a truly train wreck of a video. And then there were more than one.  My mom, brother and I were all horrified, and Jill was like, "Why is that gross?" It was pretty funny.

These videos are simultaneously hilarious and super, super depressing. People don't actually eat that food, right? And people don't use their microwaves that much- and with plastic, right? And, people don't actually film the saddest man on the planet making inedible foods, edit it poorly, mix the audio terribly and put it on tv, right? I think I might be wrong on all counts.

Potatoes and Creamed corn: 13 minutes of microwave use
1:17 notice the CU of nothing. It's my favorite part.
1:26 "And when it is done..."

Chili and Cheese Nacho dip: 4.5 minutes of microwave use

Quick note to Steven, you could spend the last 45 seconds of your segment and stir that gross junk together properly, I mean, if you wanted...

Rice a Roni: 23 minutes of microwave use

0:30 He puts the plastic knife in the "thing" with the rice into the microwave.
2:45 "You have this hot dish, that you can eat, that is made of rice."

The Spaghetti: 13 minutes of microwave use

This man has asbestos hands. He takes the glass bowl out of the microwave after ten minutes, and he took those potatoes out after ten minutes. Yikes. That said, I don't have a microwave, but I feel like 10 minutes is a long time in microwave time. Am I wrong?

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Monday, August 12, 2013

The Medium is the Message

It was like old home week this weekend. A very special birthday of a very special girl brought a lovely couple (birthday girl in tow) from the South and a charming girl from the East. Like always, it was delightful to see these wonderful people.

I have to say that even after about 20 years of friendship, Reem - the charmer from the East - teaches me things every time I see her. This weekend's lesson: beautiful people can say anything with far fewer consequences.*

At a loud bar in the Pearl we danced, played and joked. We made friends and I shocked these new friends with the mere fact that I am fun (aka kinda shameless) whilst being completely sober. Needing a slight break from the revelry and noise, I stepped outside to find Bex and get some fresh air. After a few moments we were joined outside by Reem and a man who immediately drew to mind George Eliot's villainous** "frog-faced Joshua Rigg." I will never fully understand why Reem was spending any time with this guy in the first place.  But I am getting ahead of myself.

This angry, spiteful fellow was introduced to me as an ex-Mormon, and I to him as an active-Mormon. (Immediately he hated me, maybe for this fact alone.) His job is helping homeless teenagers in some capacity, and when Reem told him that she helped out with the finances for a charity with a similar aim, he announced that he doesn't deal with that bs*** and that working on the front lines is really where it is at. I reminded him that it is because people like Reem dealing with that bs that keep these institutions financially viable he can have a job. AND, I said, the more money organizations can spend on marketing and publicity, the more people can be involved and truly effect change.

Reem then told this guy that he was prideful. He protested, and demanded evidence to justify such an accusation. After a few seconds of trying to pinpoint exactly what it was about Captain Prideful, Reem said, "Molly help me out here." I added that it was his demeanor that made him seem prideful. He objected to this. He wanted proof. He got super angry, and turned to me, completely forgetting it was Reem who called him on his mass amounts of pride in the first place, and said, "Suppose I was to call you a 'bitch.' I would need some proof to back it up." At this point he put a cigarette the wrong way in to his mouth. I said, "My behavior is your evidence, just like yours is to us. And you're about to light the wrong end of that cigarette." At which point Reem and I took our leave, found our friends and left for a different bar.

Since then I have been pondering why Captain Drunk and Prideful was yelling at me and not Reem. I wasn't being any more sassy than Reem was. I wasn't the one who initially called him out. But I'm also not the one who is gorgeous. I'm not the one he chatted up and bought a drink for. I'm the cock-block sober friend who remembers all of the details of the evening, including the fact that he was frog-faced and a ginormous douche b, who didn't have even the slightest chance with Reem--but I bet he'll remember it differently, when he writes his weekend recap blogpost.

* Using the scientific method, we took this hypothesis, used a control group (me) to compensate for variables and unequivocally proved this theory to be true.

**Can he really be called 'villainous' just because he dashed the expectations of charming ne'er-do-well Fred Vincy? I say yes- mostly because when boring people beat out charming people it is a bummer.

***One guess as to whether he used the expletive or the euphemism.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Chronique d'un été 2013

Pretty much can't get enough of these tunes this summer:

Monday, August 5, 2013

Live every week like it's Shark Week.

The other day I got a voicemail from a guy one of my friends has recently started seeing (whom I have never met) asking me for help with an activity for church. It took me a few days to call him back and when I called him back tonight, we had a super awkward ... entertaining conversation.

Things went awry straight off.  During the initial pleasantries, when I asked how he was doing, he answered "It's Shark Week, so..." So....what?? Unfortunately I don't feel I have enough information to infer anything from the fact that it is Shark Week. Then he brought up this dance, and how much he liked to dance, and I responded, "Are you asking me out?" Friends, he. was. not. When he brought up that we had met at the YSA conference a couple weeks ago, I admitted to having no idea who he was. He told me of when we "met"- not an actual introduction or conversation happened. No wonder I had/have no idea who he is. He then brought up my friend with whom he is spending some time, I went on to praise her and suggested that he 'lock that down.' He laughed an uncomfortable laugh. I knew it was time to cut and run. I told him I would help him with the activity for church. He then instructed me to put his number in my phone - as though I will need it in the future. I hung up and wondered if it was actually Shark Week and what that might mean to me and my life. What adventures are in store for this week of weeks? I have no idea, but I am all pins and needles--not unlike the underwater cameramen inside the metal cages in the chummy water filming the swarming sharks for the Discovery Channel. Maybe it is this kind of excitement of the unknown that this man was talking about when he said, "it's Shark Week, so...." I think I have missed the boat (pun intended) on Shark Week up until now.  But not anymore! No sir. I'm going to do just what Tracy Jordan told me to from now on.