Wednesday, August 29, 2007

entirely random and arbitrary

Last night, similar to the last many nights, it took me forever to get to sleep. And in my sleeplessness, for some unknown reason I was recalling a conversation with Mike recently when we were trying to figure out if there were any New Jersey sports teams. Because I couldn't sleep, and because McSweeney's lists have to be one of the best ways to waste some time, here is what I came up with last night:

The Top 5 Failed New Jersey Sports Team Names:

The Hackensack Hackey Sackers

The Manahawkin Mohawks

The Newark Guys With Too Much Gold Jewelry

The Atlantic City Gamble-aholics

The Jersey City Orthodox Jews

Anyway...I don't know what it is, but it's something. Some of my other recent, Big Apple-inspired musings:

Men cannot achieve even an inkling of masculinity when they wear form-fitting capri pants. And maybe they don't want to.

It is absolutely not ok that 80's fashion is back in style. And I use the word fashion loosely. Any era that I lived through should not yet be making a comeback. And in the case of the 80's, never would be too soon. On the other hand, 50's-era dresses are completely welcome.

Loudly discussing the reactions of your bowels during a recent vacation is certainly not appropriate train etiquette.

In other news, I have a job now, and I start next week. Praise the Lord from whom all blessings flow.

Monday, August 20, 2007

to us

Tomorrow marks two years since Mike and I got married, and it's nice to be making plans that involve Central Park and maybe a Broadway show, because have I mentioned yet that we moved back to New York? And that New York is great? Yeah, I think I might have mentioned that.

And in honor of two years, two years that have been really great, and comfortable, and educational, and genuinely good, I would like to relate something that I have discovered about myself. Something that makes me laugh a little bit. I told this to Mike recently, and I think it's sadly true- I have become a pansy since getting married. I just can't put it any other way.

Before we got married, even when we were dating, and of course when I was single, I was pretty good at being independent, I think. I did a pretty good job of adjusting to whatever city I was living in, of moving myself around and getting to know the lay of the land, and being by myself on occasion, and sleeping in bed by myself, and all that comes with being on your own. I found an apartment in Brooklyn on my own, I drove, and pulled over to look at maps, and drove some more, I was fine being in a house by myself late at night, etc, etc. But now, now is very very different. Of course I know that I could still do all of those things, but I really don't want to ever find an apartment on my own again, I hate sleeping in bed by myself, and I get a little nervous being alone at night.

But if being a pansy means being happily married, then I'll take it. All of the give and take that comes with marriage is certainly very different than anything I ever knew before, and people can explain it to you all they want and it won't sink in until you know it yourself. I think it gives me a completely different sense of self. I'm not myself anymore without Mike as part of the equation. And that's not to say that I lost my identity, or did something that would make a feminist cringe, I just became part of something bigger.

I love that we have inside jokes, I love that we can be silly together, I love that he is my family, I love that it's difficult sometimes, I love that two years has changed us and also kept us so much the same, and most of all, God-willing, I love that we have so much more to look forward to.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

start spreading the news

Finally on the other side of all the anticipation. Well, at least most of it. We've been back in New York for an entire week now, and, all things considered, life is good. After a long 3.5-day trek from Laramie, Wyoming to Tuckahoe, New York, with a few friends along the way and a jam-packed little Honda Civic, we pulled up to our building about midday last Saturday.
I almost feel like we live in San Francisco- the walk down to the building's door is like a 75 degree angle. Should be interesting come mid-winter. But the area itself is great- I had forgotten how great, even though I came over here several times when we last lived in New York.

Across the street is a tiny grocery store, across the other street are a laundromat, a bank, and a Carvel ice cream, and on the next block are Starbucks and the train station. You could not ask for a better location. The library is less than 5 minutes away, and we've got Chinese, Mexican, Japanese, Italian, Indian, and Thai food all within a quarter-mile radius. Plus two diners. And a pizzeria. Holy cow.

The apartment itself is pretty great, too. Lucky for us, the last tenant was pretty bad, so we get new carpet, new kitchen tile, new varnish on the doors, etc. Moving in pretty much sucked, so combining our feelings of not wanting to do that again anytime soon, and our love for this place, it looks like we could be here for a while. Which is a really great feeling.

Moving was made much less easy when it became apparent that I had a cold and started to really feel terrible. All I wanted to do was sit in front of the air conditioner and not move for a very long time, which was pretty difficult considering that for a while there was nowhere to sit, and being anywhere further than 3 feet from the AC unit was pretty much hell. But the cold is over, the apartment temperature is much better, and we have a few pieces of furniture- which means that I can finally say that I really do like where we're at.

But our hurdles are by no means over. I still have not found a job, even though I thought that I had one in the bag until I got an email- addressed to Casey- saying that they had chosen someone else. Professionalism at its best. I have a few possibilities to pursue, and I am really hoping that maybe next week at this time I'll be getting ready for my first day somewhere- but who's to say. In the meantime we're holding off on buying more furniture, and I continue to remind myself that this part is always the scariest, until you look back from a steadier place and shake your head at how anxious you've been.

A few reviews that I can make since the start of our adventure: The Secret Life of Bees is a wonderful book, and it was a great cross-country read. The sort-of Catholic religion that was portrayed in the book, and a 14-year-old's take on it, was really interesting and amusing. We also watched the movie Shooter last week, and although this wasn't exactly my pick, and I wasn't expecting it to be a masterpiece, it turned out to be worse than anything I could have anticipated. Beyond being a pretty crappy and cliched action movie, it turned the main character into a hero for having the same kind of intentions as a terrorist, and it really bothered me to see that glorified under the guise of patriotism and American kitsch. Two thumbs down from Erin. However, Bourne Ultimatum made up for all of my negative feelings towards action films, because it was...awesome. And as one wise woman said last night, it's not difficult watching Matt Damon either. I was always just a lukewarm fan of the movies, but this one tied everything together so well and so cleverly that I just want to go back and watch all 3. Lucky for me, my husband has always been a fan, and I'm sure we'll have the full collection of movies in our possession...and watch them many, many times.