I'm a 36 year old librarian who loves to run, read, do yoga and hang out with my friends and family. I ran the 2008 & 2009 Boston Marathon for Team Eye & Ear to support the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. Go Team Eye & Ear!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

At the Pats game

And its so freaking windy they had to bring a guy out on a ladder to fix the goalposts prior to kicking.

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Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Break Out the Bubbly!

Today is my one year blogiversary! One year ago today, I wrote my first post. (Not a very exciting one.) I love writing my blog and I'm glad that some people enjoy reading it!

This is a short post, because Nick and I are in Buffalo and getting ready to celebrate Christmas Eve with his parents, sister and brother-in-law and our two nephews. I know my mom and dad are reading my blog while I'm away, so I'd like to say "Merry Christmas! I love you!" to them and the rest of my family in Connecticut. I'm really looking forward to opening presents with my nephews, because it's been a long time since I've been able to see some kids get excited about Santa coming.

I hope everyone has a safe and fun Christmas Eve!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

What's the Punchline?

Here's a shot of some building materials being lifted to a construction site next to the Teriyaki House on West Broadway. I feel like this photo is the opening line to a joke...
Joe Smith is hit by a car and arrives in heaven only to find he must choose between 3 possible entrances...
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Monday, December 22, 2008

Passive Agressive Bus Driver

This morning I decided not to risk walking the quarter mile or so over sidewalks covered in blocks of ice to the corner of L and East Broadway to catch the 7, but just hopped the 9 which stops a block away on either side of our building. I was able to find a seat when I hopped on at H St; however, there was a boatload of people waiting to board at F St.

Some people stubbornly refuse to move towards the back of the bus when others are boarding. They press themselves against the seats and try to become as thin as possible in order to avoid moving back to the standing room section on the upper platform. As a result, there's usually a rider pig pile near the driver and people are in front of the yellow line. Some drivers just ignore the over-the-line-yellow line offenders, while others enforce the rule but shouting and shaming people into moving to the back to make room for the others.

This morning our driver was an Enforcer. After the last person had squeezed onto the bus, the standees practically had to inhale in order for the driver to close the front door.

Ding. Dong. Ding. I heard a series of tones overhead. "When boarding the bus, please make room for other passengers and stay behind the yellow line," a cheerful, yet stern automated female admonished. I hadn't heard that one before; a nice alternative to the male automated voice.

No one budged. Ding. Dong. Ding. We heard the same message again and still no one moved. Ding. Dong. Ding... The driver sounded the polite (and now incredibly annoying) message about 5 times before people finally got the hint and moved to the back of the bus. Give me a shouting angry bus driver any day; a loud threat "not to move this bus until you are behind the line!" is much more effective. There's no room for niceties on the bus.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Ghost Town

When I was walking home this afternoon, something about Broadway looked different. Then I realized that the parking ban was in effect and that the street looked strange because there weren't any parked cars. What a strange, but peaceful sight.
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Lunch Grade School Style

I don't typically tend to make New Year's Resolutions; however, this year I've decided that I'm going to try my best to bring my lunch at least 3 times a week to work. I usually spend between $6-$8 on my lunches, so saving $18-$24 each week is a good savings. Plus, lunches brought in from home are definitely healthier than something I'd pick up from a sandwich place.

Starting my resolution a little ahead of schedule, this week I managed to bring my lunch in 4 times! (This is quite possibly a record for me, not counting the time I made way too much American Chop Suey and ate it for like 8 days in a row.)

Let's hope my New Year's Resolution lasts until January 1!

My culinary masterpiece: PB&J, apple, & brownie.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Cologne Fit for a King... Here King! Here boy!

Burger King has introduced a body spray designed to smell like sizzling meat. The thought of smelling like meat all day is foul; however, I think it's a brilliant marketing idea. Burger King has had some great campaigns lately; I loved the ads where people thought the Whopper had been taken off the menu. Anyway, in the spirit of smelling like cheap food, I created a poll located at the top of the right-hand side bar.

Think globally, but drink locally.

While riding the bus into work this morning, I read a short article in the Wall Street Journal called "Holiday Beers: Tasting Seasonal Brews." I'm proud to report that not 1, but 2 out of the 4 featured beers are from Boston!

The Samuel Adams Winter Classics Mix-Pack was noted as "featur[ing] five different holiday brews including Old Fezziwig Ale, Cranberry Lambic, Holiday Porter, Cream Stout and Winter Lager. It's a good variety with flavors that pair well with sweet and savory foods. Our favorite of the bunch was the Holiday Porter. It has a root-beer-colored body and was a little heavy. The beer uses chocolate malts, but we didn't find it to be too chocolaty or overly sweet. It left a nice smoky after-taste."

The Harpoon Brewery Winter Warmer was the tasting team's favorite! They said, "This was our favorite beer of the ones we tried. The brew has an amber-colored body, was light and not very foamy. It has a fragrant nutmeg aroma and nice cinnamon taste with a hint of banana aftertaste."
Get drinking!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Looking Back on 2008: My Version of the Holiday Letter

It's the little things in life that make it interesting. Instead of detailing the wonderful, life-changing events that occurred during the year (you'll get plenty of that in your 3rd cousin's "A Great 2008 with the Smith's" holiday letter), here are some of my smaller, yet memorable 2008 moments:
  • Taught my mom how to text. Her first attempts read like the original Beowulf manuscript (thanks to T9); however, now she's a pro.
  • Tried durian.
  • Joined Netflix, which admittedly isn't much of a milestone; however, that did force me to learn how to use the Playstation 3 (which I never touch, unless it's to dust) to watch a blu ray disc.
  • Used the expression "oh, snap!" correctly.
  • Getting flashed by a pedestrian on West Broadway.
  • Flashing a pedestrian on Arch St.
  • Thankfully, never once going to the Natick Collection

What a great year!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Tagged by the Clothing Protection Foundation

I kept feeling something scratchy on the right side of my ribcage this morning. Turns out it was one of those "remove before wearing tags" that I never do.

When I turned to my right to perform the tag-ectomy, I noticed that my dry cleaning tag was also still firmly stapled to my back belt loop. So, I cut off the tag on my sweater and stood up to get a better grasp on my dry cleaning tag. Having now successfully removed a tag from both my sweater and my pants, I noticed my fly was down.

I should just rip the seat of my pants open now and get it over with.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Friday, December 12, 2008

Harlequin Romance on School St.

While books can trigger all sorts of emotion, including lust... Please please don't make out while waiting to use the Title Sleuth at Borders.
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Soxy New Look

Everyone is going to have an opinion on the new uniforms, and I'm sure a lot of those opinions will be negative. Although I like the new uniforms a lot; more importantly, I like the Sox and baseball. They could wear floral prints for all I care. Hurry up and get here Valentine's Day!

I love these guys.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

This Month's Featured Reader: Jen!

Introducing December's Featured Reader: Jen!

Here's George, Jen's cute cat that once escaped her apartment, but came thankfully came home!

Jen and I worked together for two years and ate lunch together almost every day. We were in a lunchtime knitting group and Jen never once laughed at my sad blue "scarf" (aka fabric strip) even though she had long graduated to sweaters. Jen has a quiet & admirable determination that sets her apart from most people; she's a loyal friend, the best coworker, and the best dancer I know. Seriously. She can shake it like a Polaroid picture. Here's Jen in her own words! (My questions are in bold.)

1) By day I am the female version of Chandler Bing (nobody knows what I do) …by night I either go to school, do homework and occasionally sleep.

2) I can’t live without food and water...I know, its crazy, but I would literally DIE without them!

3) Best meal I’ve ever had was in a small restaurant in France. Can't remember the name, but it was delicious! It might have had a lot to do with the fact that I hadn't eaten anything normal while in Europe, except Nutella and bread, so anything was delicious at that point. I even took a picture of my meal….

Worst meal I’ve ever had was a batch of macaroni n' cheese I made once. Yes, I completely screwed up Kraft Mac N' Cheese and in the process almost poisoned myself!

4) 3 Quirky Facts about Yourself
1. I was born in the Blizzard of '78
2. I hate coconut
3. If there is music, I will dance...even in the elevator

5) Haiku describing what you did yesterday
stressed a lot at work
ate food, drank wine with friends
crawled into bed...snooze

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

My City is Crappier than Yours!

I found Rob the Bouncer's blog, Clublife, via Jason Mulgrew's blog, Everything is Wrong With Me. I really enjoy reading Rob's blog; his posts are to-the-point, interesting and well-written. Anyway, he related a conversation he had with someone from South Boston and here's an excerpt:

I once had a conversation in a bar with a guy from South Boston. He, too, was a very smart guy. He, too, said something I disagreed with. He said South Boston was more dangerous than New York.
I asked him why he thought this.
He said it was because even though there were “tough guys” in New York, they weren’t as “tough” as the “tough guys” in Southie, because all the “tough guys” he knew in Southie were serial killers with dozens of bodies on them. I said this was because the serial killers around here don’t go around bragging about it, so they don’t get caught and the beat goes on.
I wanted to repost this because sometimes it seems like Bostonians and New Yorkers are always fighting to be the (insert superlative of your choice here) city; including most dangerous.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Santa Claws

On Saturday morning, Nick and I went to Smolak Farms to get our Christmas tree. We went last year, and were really impressed with their tree selection and customer service. This year the trees were all so nice, that the 2nd tree we looked at we ended up buying.

Our Awesome Balsam

We put the tree up as soon as we got home, put on the lights, but then decided to let the branches settle a bit before putting on the decorations.

While watching VT humiliate BC, the tree started to sway violently back and forth. Then, as quickly the movements started, they stopped. I peered into the tree and saw two yellow eyes staring at me through the branches.

At least it wasn't a squirrel

Initially, I thought this was pretty cute; however, I'm now over it. Dwayne's covered in sap and every time he climbs the tree about 1,000 needles fall off. Any ideas on how to keep a cat out of a Christmas tree?

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Free Downtown Crossing Wine Crawl

Last night, my friends Jen, Nell and I went on the First Annual Downtown Crossing Wine Crawl. The *free* event was sponsored by the Downtown Crossing Partnership, whose mission is:

The Downtown Crossing Partnership is a partnership of businesspeople and residents who work together to address neighborhood issues with one strong voice.
Our agenda is determined by our members, who share a collective vision of strengthening our neighborhood, the business environment and the natural vitality of this exciting urban area.
From ensuring clean, safe streets to promoting area events, the Downtown Crossing Partnership’s collaborative efforts are an urban success story.

The crawl started at 5:30 at Marliave, where we received our Wine Crawl Pass, a button indicating we were on the crawl, and a holiday savings pass good at many stores, restaurants & hotels in the Downtown Crossing area. (The holiday pass is also available on DCP's homepage.) By 5:50 or so, there were about 100 people gathered and a DCP representative briefly thanked us for coming and explained that we could visit the bars in any order we wished. Each bar we visited, had a variety of wines and appetizers to choose from, along with a designated spot for crawlees. Some bars even offered us 2nd glasses of wine (Max & Dylan's was especially generous.)

Cheers! (That's my man hand in the front)

We ended up going to 5 of the 7 crawl stops, stopping by Marliave, Lock Ober, Max & Dylan's, Mantra, and then Ivy for the wrap party. The crawl was so well organized and the bars actually looked happy to have us there, even though we weren't paying customers. This event was also a reminder that there are some other places to have dinner and drinks in the Downtown Crossing area besides Fajitas & 'Ritas (which is good, but it's nice to have variety.) I had never been to Mantra before, and was impressed by the layout and cool decor. Perhaps it was a little too trendy for me though, because the bathroom stalls feature two-way mirrors on the inside of the stall doors. The bathroom was empty when I went inside, but when I closed the stall door I could see 2 other women enter and start to fix their hair at the counter. Even though I knew they couldn't see me, it was still very unsettling to see them, and I was struck with performance anxiety for a bit!

Photo taken from inside the stall. You can see the stainless steel sinks through the door.

Also, I have to admit that on my way out of the bathroom, I couldn't help but wave enthusiastically at a closed stall door. Hopefully, I didn't give the girl too much of a fright!

The crawl was a fun time with friends and much better than my last documented Downtown Crossing experience.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Femail Problems

I have all of my holiday cards written, addressed, stamped and ready to go. Is it too early to mail them out?
They're neatly stacked on my desk and it's taking all of my willpower not to drop them in the mail. Something tells me it's still a bit early though. Any thoughts?

Monday, December 1, 2008

Advent Calendar Picture Interpretation

Every year my mom gives me an advent calendar at Thanksgiving. Seeing as today's December 1, we got to find and open the first door.
Let's take a peek...
At first I thought it was a colorful turkey baster...

What is this?

Then, I realized that it was a toy top adjacent to a small beach ball. Nick, however, thinks it's a Christmas ornament. I could be swayed either way, I think. What do YOU think?