12.24.2009

I remember when you were here and all the fun we had last year

I guess I could write a long post and tell you all about the rest of my trip across the country in October. How I went to DC for an unsuccessful job interview (but a very successful visit with Melissa and Carrie and Melvin) then went to Michigan State to check out its business school. I could also go into great detail about my trip back to Tucson with Tippy and my parents and the fit Tippy threw one night in our hotel room in Roswell, New Mexico. I might mention the last couple of months that I've spent studying for the GMAT and working on MBA applications and how annoying it all is. Instead, I will just say Merry Christmas and post a picture of Tippy looking dandy in his new tie.

10.25.2009

Fight Tigers, you will always win

Except when you don't.
It was ugly last night, folks. The Tigers never looked like they stood a chance against Colt McCoy and his awesomeness. We did, however, get to sit behind a guy with a crazy hat. I can tell you from my trip to the campus bookstore that this bit of fashion can be yours for just $49.95.

Why yes, those are beads. Don't you really want one?

What we did have, however, was a great homecoming parade full of tractors, teeny marching bands from tiny mid-Missouri towns and more than one kid in their best tiger costume. The adorableness level was off the scale.

That kid is almost as cute as the photo of me in my Mizzou Snuggie. Just sayin'.

Truman did seem a little distracted during the parade. I should have seen this photo of him blowing off a little kid as a sign that things wouldn't go well Saturday night. His head just wasn't in the game.

So all I left Columbia with was a belly full of Shakespeare's Pizza and a cold. I spent today blowing my nose and chewing cough drops as I drove my way to Fayetteville, Arkansas. Tomorrow I'm checking out the Supply Chain Management program at the Arkansas business school (that would be the Sam M. Walton College of Business). Everything in this town seems to be named after a Walton or a Tyson. I should keep a tally.

So I'll go on about business school a little more in the future. I'm not sure what I'm going to do yet, but I've decided to stop waiting for the phone to ring. The future is mine, people! Mine! Of course, that might just be the Theraflu talking.

10.23.2009

Have the guts, got the glory

Why, you may ask, are those frat boys dressed like sheep? It's house decs night at Mizzou, of course!
I know not every school has house decs (short for decorations) as part of their homecoming festivities, but it's one of my favorite parts of homecoming weekend. In short, fraternities and sororities around campus team up and build a set for a skit in their front yard. Everything has to be pomped (covered with little wads of tissue paper) and a skit is written to match the homecoming theme. This year's theme was "New Fight, Same Bite" but it pretty much boiled down to "Beat the Longhorns." Then for four hours on Friday night tons of people show up as the Greek houses act out the skits over and over again for the mulling crowds. Confused yet? Don't worry, I have video!



See? Super hokey fun! Maybe you just have to be here.

So tomorrow's the big day. There's a parade in the morning then some sort of football game or something in the evening. My friend and fellow Mizzou alum Sarah is meeting up with me, so now all the Tigers have to do is win. Should be easy.

10.22.2009

We will tramp, tramp, tramp around the columns with a cheer for old Mizzou

I had another busy day today meeting with people and checking out the new convergence program at the journalism school. It sounds really interesting and they're new building is beautiful, but when did we collectively decide that banks of flat screen televisions tuned to muted news networks = convergence? Just because it looks like the future doesn't mean the future is here.
I just have a quick picture to post today. All the downtown business windows have been decorated by fraternities, sororities and residence halls, and while some suffered from the rain today, they've been really fun to check out. Of course, my favorite pizza place also had my favorite window. I don't remember which Greek organization did this one, but it's pretty cute.


10.21.2009

You can't break out of a circle that you never knew you were in

I had a long day of driving, so I won't write much today. I just offer a couple photos as proof that I made it to Columbia, Missouri:

No the white balance isn't off, Jesse Hall is lit up in gold for homecoming. They have the town done up real nice for the festivities (as they say in these parts).

Oh yes, it's a Snuggie! I can't tell you how excited I am about this purchase. Maybe I'll wear this exact outfit to the game on Saturday.

10.20.2009

On the road, again.

Well, it was close there for awhile. It was starting to look like I had a job lined up and then it didn't happen. As Melissa said, it was "Le Grande Suck." So I feel a little like I'm back to the starting board after 10 months of looking for a job and that can mean only one thing... a road trip!
Last year I got a hotel reservation for Mizzou's homecoming weekend. It's been ten years since I've been to a game and it's about time I got back to one. Plus, this one features hottie Texas quarterback Colt McCoy (insert "yee-haw, pew, pew, pew" here). Now that I have some time on my hands (again) I'm expanding my Missouri homecoming trip.

First, there will be a couple extra days in Columbia to learn about grad school programs there. Then it's on to Arkansas, Tennessee and Michigan (with a short swing through Cincinnati). All total, it looks to be a nice ten day, 2,400 mile little road trip. I'll try to blog as I go along and take a few pictures. Watch this space, dear readers, because I promise adventure awaits.

In the meantime, I give you a photo booth series of Melissa and me during my last road trip to Chicago. I bet you can't guess the point when we figured out the machine was actually working.

8.06.2009

And I say your uncle was a crooked French Canadian and he was gut-shot running gin

First off, the internets are no help in trying to find out if gut-shot is hyphenated or not. What about French Canadian? What say my copy editing peeps? Maybe I just should have picked a different quote.
Now that we have that out of the way, let me tell you what Madison is all abuzz about today. The entire city is in a collective swoon from last night's Decemberists concert. Colin Meloy and his buds played their album, The Hazards Of Love, straight through then came back and played some more. But why let me tell you when you can read Josh's review here.

Josh also got a photo pass to take some pictures at the show. Since I was coming along, however, I snagged the pass and showed him how the professionals do it (or people who used to be
professionals and didn't get paid for the photos they took). There's a small photo gallery attached to his review, but I've added some extra pics exclusively here at Sad & British. Let's marvel together at Colin Meloy who was dressed (as Kelly said) "like an Amish kid on Rumspringa."


7.29.2009

And now a plug about a plug

Kelly (Lady Bear Kelly, not copy editor Kelly) wrote a lovely little plug for Tune Me Up today. You should go here and read it forthwith. Then you should become a Tune Me Up Facebook fan or follow our Twitter. Then you should tell all your friends about it.* Then you should spend all your money buying playlists. It's just that simple people!
*Seriously, though, it would be nice if you could tell all your friends about it.

I'm sick and tired of you setting me up

It seems like every September I give a big plug for Coltrane Motion right before the MidPoint Music Festival. They play there every year and they're always one of my favorite shows. Well, this year, I'm giving them a surprise late July plug as well. Go here and check out their MySpace page where you can download two Bruce Springsteen covers they did. It's easy and free! That's becoming more important as an increasing number of my friends are finding themselves unemployed. **sigh**

7.16.2009

When we get together there's no need to be clever

First off, an update on the strawberry plants. They're all grown up now and looking lovely. Like expectant parents we are waiting anxiously for the first berries to be born (except unlike expectant parents we will then eat the children, so I guess that's a bad simile). We had one perfect berry the other night but some critter stole it before we got around to picking it. Tippy really needs to work on catching a rabbit or chipmunk or anything bigger than the tiny, tiny mice he seems so good at getting.
But the real news today is Harry Potter! I've been anxiously await my chance to go see the new movie and I even managed to quickly reread The Half-Blood Prince to get ready. That, of course, meant that I also had to reread The Deathly Hollows because I can't remember what happened in that book anymore either. I guess my stroll through the collected works of Alexander McCall Smith will have to be put on hold for a few days.

Shawn and I are going to see the movie tonight and early reviews are sounding pretty positive. Of course I would probably love it even if it was as stifled and awkward as the first movie. I'm probably most excited about just getting out of the house.

So that's all I have today blog readers. I'm considering getting back to listening to some albums if I can ever get through File Under Easy Listening by Sugar. We'll see.

7.10.2009

It's business time

In case you don't follow my Twitter (and why don't you?) or see me on Facebook you might not know what I've been doing for the months and months that have passed since I left journalism (or journalism left me).
Besides applying for tons of jobs and getting the odd phone call, I've decided to start up a business. It's called Tune Me Up and it takes advantage of all these years of my life I've spent listening to and reading about music. We create customized music playlists for people who are interested in having some new music, but don't have the time. All you have to do is fill out our fun questionnaire and tell us what you want to hear. A few days later, the playlist arrives at you door.

Things are just getting started, so I'm trying to get the word out. So tell your friends and become a fan on Facebook. I'll be starting a blog for Tune Me Up to share some iTunes tips and music updates, but I'm going to try and stay on top of Sad & British, too. I'll definitely be posting updates on how the business is going. I'd love to be able to do this full time, so lets hope it works!

6.15.2009

Have you fed the fish today?

Let me tell you about life in Wisconsin so far. It's freaking cold. I've been told the rest of the country is experiencing a meteorological phenomenon known as summer. I have merely experienced a couple of days where it was warm enough to take my jacket off. My dad keeps assuring me that it has been unusually cold. Ten to twelve degrees below normal he says. I'll believe it when I see it, I say.
Yesterday was the first day that I began to believe. Temperatures were in the mid 70s so we headed out to the park for a picnic. That's the other thing I've learned about Wisconsin. They don't waste a minute of any warm weather they might get. All sunny days must be spent outside, preferably drinking.

Having just procured a Wisconsin fishing license, I was ready to bring the pain to the fish of the Wisconsin river. Now I've been told that the shallow, snag prone river is not the best place to fish, but just look at what I caught:

Behold the mighty catfish! It took hours of expert angling to reel in the sucker, but state regulations said I had to return it to the river. That's too bad, because I think it was the perfect size for a Tippy snack. He really likes fish.

6.13.2009

In which my mom becomes addicted to Bananagrams

It all started innocently enough. I went over to Madison to spend the weekend with Josh and Kelly and check out all the amazing cheeses and lakes the area has to offer. You can read all about it here because I was too busy eating milk products to blog about it.
Anyway, one night that weekend Kelly busted out the Bananagrams so we could play a game. Considering I've tried to live a Scrabble free life, I was really no competition for Kelly and her ruthless wordsmithing. I liked the game, though, and thought it might be something fun to play with my parents. I'm always trying to find activities for them these days. You know how it is. I don't want them out on the streets all day getting into trouble.

I found the game on sale at Target one day so that sealed the deal. That evening I showed my mom how to play and a Banagrams monster was created. Now we spend part of each evening locked in vicious competition and looking up obscure words (dui, anyone?). We're closely matched so it usually comes down to the last tile or two. I'm also pretty sure I could give Kelly a better run for her money these days. After all, I have a lot of practice.

I try not to contemplate that this is what my life has come to - sitting around all evening playing word games. I try to focus on all the good I'm doing ion the world, like keeping my parents out of gangs.

5.30.2009

I should be able to make jam by Monday, right?

Behold the best garden project ever! Why clutter up your back yard with flowers and other useless plants when you can create a strawberry pyramid? Yep, that's a three part dirt layer cake of 50 strawberry plants. My parents and I spent most of Friday and part of Saturday constructing and planting this beauty, complete with watering nozzle sticking right out of the top. I consider it a beautiful (and practical) piece of minimalist yard art.
The plants are teeny tiny so if we're lucky we'll have strawberries by August. That gives us about 2 weeks of harvesting before the Wisconsin winter sets in. But oh, what a two weeks!

5.25.2009

You seem like a soldier who's lost his composure

Two thoughts occurred to me pretty quickly upon seeing Gomez at the Pabst Theater in Milwaukee last night:
1. Why have I not seen these guys in concert before?
2. This might be the only band that I've loved for 10 years, but don't know a single member's name*.

The show was really good (leading to question number one) and they played a set list that sounded like a greatest hits compilation. Three of their first six songs were tunes I've used in mix CDs over the years. It was just about the perfect set for a fan who's loved them for years but never seen them in concert.

So why have I avoided Gomez? I'm not sure. It's not like they've never played a show near me. I can think of two concerts they played in Cincinnati in just the last couple years. I think I just took them for granted. I thought they might be too much of a stoner jam band live and wasn't interested in watching a mob of dreadlocked white people noodle dance all night. Turns out I was wrong.
 
The show was tight (partly necessitated by a little too much reliance on prerecorded backing beats) and the fans were more like middle class thirty somethings than Phish phreaks. Did I mention the $3 pint cans of PBR? All in all it was a good time, and I vow to catch them again when I get the chance. Hopefully, it won't take another 10 years.

*Wikipedia tells me that the members of Gomez are: Ian Ball, Ben Ottewell, Tom Gray, Paul Blackburn and Olly Peacock. Sorry about that guys!

5.24.2009

And what did you do today?

Tippy caught a mouse (or a vole, the jury's still out on that). He may be old, but he's still got it!

5.14.2009

Wilco (the stream)

Wilco's new album isn't being released until June 30th, but it's being streamed on their website right now, if you're inclined to go check it out. I've listened to about half of it so far. While it seems to have some interesting moments, nothing's blown me away yet.
And as if to prove that my moving to Milwaukee automatically makes it 10% cooler, Wilco also shot their new album cover in The MKE (as I've now dubbed it). You don't see a lot of camels in town, so I'm glad they managed to capture such a rare occurrence.

In other news, I'm heading to Madison this weekend to hang out with Josh and his Lady Bear. I can only hope they have secured sufficient quantities of orange beer fixin's

5.05.2009

I saw him scratch a rash and I had to grab an ax

It was really only a matter of time until all the great artists of our generation made music that captured the wave of swine flu hysteria sweeping the planet. I'm sure Bruce Springsteen's swine flu tribute album will be hitting the record stores any day now, but until then I give you The Streets.
I follow Mike Skinner's Twitter (I know, how very 2009 of me) and he posted a link to his new swine flu song today. It's accompanied by a video featuring all your favorite zombie movie moments. I can't begin to tell you how happy this video makes me. Just remember when Springsteen's album wins all the accolades that The Streets did it first and did it best.


4.12.2009

Yellow is the color of my true love's crossbow

Once again I am heading on a giant road trip across the country, but this one is new and improved - now featuring parents!
What does the addition of parents bring? Well first off, there’s the authentic giant minivan filled with stuff. I’ve managed to carve out a niche for Tippy and me in the back, but that’s about it. I’m pretty sure that five years from now I’ll finally find the stash of ketchup packets I hid somewhere today. Parents also means extra stops for bathroom breaks. If we keep on this pace, I’m confident we will arrive in Milwaukee in time for Halloween, which means we’ll have a couple days before we have to turn around and head back to Tucson for the winter. On the plus side, I’ll have a deep knowledge of every gas station and rest stop West of the Mississippi. Really, it’s fine because what parents really mean is I can type blog posts while they drive, so at least that’s nice.

The iPod has been getting a heavy workout today. So here are a few one sentence reviews of albums I’ve listened to so far. Any of the artists mentioned to feel free to use them as pull quotes on their websites:

The Hazards of Love by The Decemberists - As close to prog rock as I’m comfortable getting yet fun and funky.

Asking for Flowers by Kathleen Edwards - I prefer my Kathleen Edwards with more Bourbon, please.

Changing Horses by Ben Kweller - Ben Kweller goes country and I’m OK with that.

Elvis Perkins in Dearland by Elvis Perkins - I’m really enjoying this new, slightly happier Elvis Perkins.

Almost You: The Songs of Elvis Costello by various artists - This album is an old favorite but Okkervil River's cover of "Riot Act" really stuck out for me today.

Which leads to...

The Stage Names by Okkervil River - I have two albums by this band so it's kind of late for me to name them my new favorite group, but that's what I'm going to do.

We went on a little side trip to the Very Large Array in New Mexico. It's a giant framework (or array) of radio telescopes and it's all very scientific. What's most important to me is it's picturesque. It's like I'm in a science fiction novel!


4.07.2009

He forgot his bedside manners

I've been meaning to write about A.C. Newman for the last few days, but I think it's gonna have to wait. He's not that inspiring for me anyway. What I want to talk about today is social networking and etiquette.
Every article I read about this fancy new social network Twitter mentions the correct way one should "tweet." Should you pimp your business? Is it okay to actually post what you're doing when it asks "What are you doing?" My question is, what does it matter?

People can't seem to wait to set down a batch of rules whenever a new form of communication pops up. But isn't part of the fun of the interwebs making up rules as you go along? Sure it's annoying to get Twitter spam, but I really enjoy the diversity of posts from my fellow Twitterers. I get job listings from some, random musings from others and grocery lists from celebrities. If they were all forced to say interesting of informative things or only share links, Twitter would be a lot more boring.

So let's ignore all the advice and just do whatever we want with Twitter. Seriously, it's just 140 characters. How many rules can there possibly be for such a short message?

3.29.2009

The one band NPR really wants me to love

There are many ways to fill your days when you're unemployed. One way that's sort of a tradition in my family is to go for a long walk. It's a good way to eat up an hour or two and it gets you out of the house for free. So every day I go for a long walk in the Arizona sun and listen to podcasts. There's something about hearing stories about other people's lives that keeps your mind off yours. 
Two of my favorite podcasts are music related, naturally. Sound Opinions and All Songs Considered provide music news, album reviews and enough constant SXSW updates to fill me with jealousy.

Most of the time, these two podcasts don't agree on much. Sound Opinions, which features two newspaper writers, takes more of a populist stance while All Songs Considered encompasses more of that liberal media elite snobbery that we're so accustomed to on NPR. Both podcasts find common ground on one topic, though. I should be listening to Ponytail.

What's Ponytail, you ask? Well, technically they're an art punk band from Baltimore, but to really understand what they're like, you need to think about Yoko Ono imitating a tiger while people play random instruments in the background. Mostly, it makes me think, "THIS is what you agree on?"

I'm sorry NPR gods, but I can't get behind this band. I'm a lyrics freak and there's a noticeable lack of lyrics in Ponytail's work (unless you count the odd Japanese schoolgirl yelp). I want to be hip, too, but this is where I put my foot down. I'm sure their show at SXSW was killer and it's great that the lead singer is this tiny ball of energy, but I am not going to listen to this music. I'm just not. Does this mean I'm kicked out of the NPR cool kids club?

I think they both agree on the new Decemberists album, too. I can get behind that. Maybe that will keep me in the club.

3.21.2009

How not to do community journalism

I've been meaning to post a link to this terrible, terrible story for a while now. I just can't wrap my head around (1) why this is news (2) why ANYONE cares and (3) why each sentence needs its own paragraph. Just read it then consider a world without professional journalists.

3.13.2009

Hey everyone, remember Shannon?

When you are living with your parents, it's the little things that matter. Little things like the weekly showing of Lost that appears every Wednesday to break up the long stretch of days of not getting called about the resumes you sent out. It's 60 minutes (sometimes more) of thoroughly confusing drama that demands you focus on it and not the the strange set of circumstances that led you to this house, in this town with this amazingly large HDTV. 
So I've been a little out of sorts this week because Lost was a rerun. To fill the gap, I've spent my time reading the wiki, the recap of last week's episode and just about everything else I can get my hands on. In that spirit, I give you a gallery presenting the 10 Most Worthless Characters on Lost. Oh Television Without Pity, you always know what I need, and it is usually more stuff about Lost. That, or a job.

**********

Today also marks the launch of Kelly's (aka, Ladybear) new blog. It's over there on the right and it's called Here's What's Happening. What is happening, you ask? Well Kelly and her husband Josh (the author of the Lost column I wrote about the other day) just moved to Madison, Wisconsin after years of living in New York City. The whole thing reads like the pilot of a new sitcom. Look for it on the CW this fall.

3.08.2009

Yep, we still don't know about the smoke monster

In the middle of all my travels and job hunting I missed an importnat development. Josh wrote a column about Lost! You can find it here, but I guess you can't talk to anyone about it.
I won't bore you with my theories about the new season (and it seems most of you haven't even seen it yet so it would just be a spoiler) but there are a whole new batch of querstions floating around. I have given up any hope of them being answered, but I would like them to get to the smoke monster at some point. Please? Can we at least answer the smoke monster question? Please?!

2.08.2009

Whew!

OK, I'm about blogged out, but I'm hanging in there to see who wins Album of the Year. I'm 90% sure that it's gonna be Coldplay, but you never know. Until then, I have a few hits and misses:
  • I can't get over Neil Diamond's terrible rendition of "Sweet Caroline." I'm a Neil Diamond fan from way back but he just talked his way through that song. It was a big yawn.
  • M.I.A. showed up all the boys during the Rap Pack segment. Here she is ready to have a baby at any moment and not only does she have a crazy/awesome outfit, she was the best performer out there. OK, Jay-Z was a close second.
  • I thought the Four Tops tribute was really nice. I usually cringe when they bring out the old guys but the whole performance seemed really fun and sweet.
  • What's up with Green Day wearing suits? Are they all grown up now?
Wow! The old people win again. That was a pretty lukewarm reception for Robert Plant and Alison Krauss for album of the year. I guess everyone else was expecting Coldplay, too. Maybe it goes back to my original thought that "Viva La Vida" is a great song but the rest of Coldplay's album is just meh. Now, shut up Robert Plant and let us go home.

Fifteen steps, then a sheer drop

The Grammys are constantly trying to create special moments. That's the point of all those silly duets. Most of them are cringe inducing or at least laughable. Then Radiohead comes along.
They performed the strangest song of the night, "15 Step" with the USC marching band and rocked the house. That's how it's done, Jonas Brothers. I kind of hope they release an mp3 of their performance so we can all buy it on iTunes. Or maybe we can just pay what we want for it.

She was just 17?

Have you ever thought how creepy it is that Paul McCartney still sings "I Saw Her Standing There"? The dude is 66 now and he's still singing about 17 year-olds. The song is also slipping out of his range. I know the crowd likes it but maybe he should find a new tune.
I'm also against his dyed hair. Leave a little gray in their. Just For Men has a special product for that now.

A fool could read the signs

So it looks like the infamous old Grammy voters finally reared their heads by giving Robert Plant and Alison Krauss the Grammy for Record of the Year. It's not a bad song, but it really looked like Coldplay was going to sweep everything tonight.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, I have to give them props for giving the Best New Artist award to Adele. She's like Amy Winehouse without the crack addiction. She's got a little more Dusty Springfield going on than Amy, and if you don't have her album you should go check it out.

What's my age again?

Is Blink 182 really getting back together? If they are I'm kind of excited about that. I was just thinking the other day about how all of their solo projects have been pretty terrible and gone nowhere. I'll be interested to see what they can come up with. I'm not sure they can still do songs about getting in trouble with their parents since they're all like 35 now.
----------

I once read a review of Hanson (remember them?) where it was mentioned that they weren't terrible teen pop because there was an underlying musicality to their work. The idea was that young fans would be drawn to their bubblegum pop but then grow into different music as they discovered the band's influences. That's sort of the way I feel about the Jonas Brothers. They're nothing I would listen to, but a young fan might start with them then check out Stevie Wonder or Elvis Costello. They're like gateway rock.

'Cause when you're 15 and someone tells you they love you, you're gonna believe them

I have to admit that I thought Taylor Swift was another Disney creation. I just read her Wikipedia entry, though, and she seems like someone who really worked her way up the ladder. I have to give her props for that.
What's up with Miley Cyrus' nasal singing? Is that her country voice? I've never heard her sing like that before - not that I hear a lot of Miley Cyrus.

----------

Two more things:
(1) Robert Plant always reminds me of a wet Labrador.
(2) T Bone Burnett is the secret genius of the music business. He has produced an album you love. Seriously, go look it up.


It was 1989 my thoughts were short, my hair was long

Some more random thoughts from the Grammys so far:
  • I think we've established that "Bridge Over Troubled Water" is not Duffy's song.
  • I will give Coldplay props for admitting they ripped off the Sergeant Pepper's outfits, but I think the Paul McCartney shout-out count is already up to 4 and we've just started.
  • I would perfectly happy if Kid Rock never recorded another song again. Even if it's not really his song like the "Sweet Home Alabama" rip off he does. Also, who let him do a medley? Isn't one song from him enough?

I used to rule the world

I have to say that Coldplay's new album is growing on me, I was an instant fan of "Viva La Vida" but the other songs were a little too dense for me (by dense read overproduced). I am really warming to "Lost" and I'm a sucker for the remix with Jay-Z. I think it's really become an anthem for me since I got laid off ("just because I'm losing doesn't mean I'm lost.") and I loved the stripped down performance they did tonight.
They need to stop wearing those silly outfits they designed, though.

Liveblogging the Grammys

I never mean to write about the Grammys. Heck, I never usually mean to watch the Grammys. It is a way for me to catch up on all the Top 40 music I never listen to so I guess it's good. A couple quick things:
  • I thought when they said U2 would be playing an all new song it would NOT be their single. Thanks guys but I've already heard that song.
  • Is Jennifer Hudson's win like how Heath Ledger is going to win an Oscar? I haven't heard the album but I'm wondering if there's a pity vote there.
  • From the quick glimpse we got of Paul McCartney, I'm worried that he might have gone crazy with the hair dye again. We'll have to keep an eye on that,
More to come...

1.28.2009

Short days and afternoons spent puttering around in a dark house with the windows painted shut

It's day two of an ice and snow storm here in The 'Nati, so it's day two of me just hanging around my apartment. Oh I guess there's cleaning I could do, but on days like this I prefer sitting around and drinking tea. The storm is supposed to wind down this afternoon which might give things a chance to clear up before Friday when I have to pick up Jeff at the airport. I hope he had fun in Miami. I'm sure it doens't look like this:

1.23.2009

Lip service is all you'll ever get from me

Kelly tagged me with one of those lists of 25 things about yourself so here it is for your reading pleasure:
1. I've lived in eight states and one foreign country if you county the summers from college I spent at my parents' house. I've actually lived in Texas, Kentucky and Missouri twice each.

2. If you add up the years I spent in Missouri and Kentucky I've lived in those states for nearly 21 years. That doesn't leave much time for all those other places.

3. My cat, Tippy, acts like a dog half the time and a giant baby the other half.

4. I make a conscious effort to not talk about Tippy too much (though I sometimes fail). I don't want to seem like a crazy cat lady, unless I'm talking to my friend Meggan then we geek out about our cats.

5. I refuse to live in Hyde Park because I don't want to be the stereotypical single woman with a cat who lives in Hyde Park. Instead I am the single woman with a cat who lives in Ft. Wright. See how that is completely different?

6. I regularly buy Frosted Flakes under the assumption that if I bought the more adult Corn Flakes I would just put suger on them anyway.

7. I will watch just about any televised sporting event. Often I don't even care who wins.

8. I'm pretty sure I watch more TV than almost anyone else I know. It doesn't bother me. I love my Tivo.

9. My favorite TV show is Lost or maybe 30 Rock.

10. I love to take a nap in the afternoon and do it whenever I can.

11. Now that I am looking for a new career I worry that I won't love anything as much as I love journalism.

12. Every time CNN has a story about new layoffs somewhere, I feel oddly happy. Then I feel bad for feeling happy.

13. I always wanted a Mini Cooper and now that I have one I can't believe how much I love it. I can think of no other car I'd rather have.

14. I worry that I don't listen to enough music. There's so much new stuff out there that I feel like I can't keep up, but I still try.

15. I have a small collection of photos of me kissing statues of Thomas Jefferson. 

16.  When I was 2 years old, I saw the St. Louis Arch and though it was a McDonalds. What can I say? I was hungry.

17. I read about two books a month, sometimes more if they're short. I've never read an entire romance novel but I am a sucker for chick lit.

18. I'd rather eat gummi worms than chocolate.

19. One of my earliest memories is of me in the kitchen watching my dad cook breakfast while he sang "Jeremiah was a bullfrog..."

20. I'm not a morning person. Never have been.

21. I don't drink a ton of coffee, but I've made a pot almost every morning since I was 13 years old.

22. My mom is pretty sure I'm going to write the great American novel. Instead I give her lists like this.

23. I don't like it when people have secret second plans that they don't tell you about. It's my pet peeve.

24. I hate the word "empowered." It makes me throw up a little every time I hear it. You either give people the ability to control things or you don't. Empowered just means lip service to me.

25. I always bet on number 9 when I play roulette. It has paid off more than once.

I hate to pass these things along, but if Josh and Shawn are so inclined, I would love to see their lists.

1.15.2009

The District sleeps alone tonight after the bars turn out their lights

After being back in Cincinnati for a whole week, I'm packing things up again to head east. This time I'm going to Washington DC for the inauguration. I've been thinking about going since before the election and now that I have so much free time on my hands....
I will probably be doing some Twittering, but I can't promise many blog posts. There are parties to go to and friends to meet. In the meantime I leave you with my very own version of the Obama poster. You can make your own here.


Do you feel inspired yet?

1.07.2009

I can't tell you if I applied or not

There was an ad on the front of the New York Times website for careers in the CIA. Being in need of a job and open to anything, I poked around the site. There were a lot of openings for people with specialized skills, but what struck me the most was this little tidbit:
Important Notice: Friends, family, individuals, or organizations may be interested to learn that you are an applicant for or an employee of the CIA. Their interest, however, may not be benign or in your best interest. You cannot control whom they would tell. We therefore ask you to exercise discretion and good judgment in disclosing your interest in a position with the Agency. You will receive further guidance on this topic as you proceed through your CIA employment processing.

Sounds super secret, doesn't it? I've been reading lots of job listings lately, but nothing quite like that.

I was a good job paid off with bad checks

You'd think that being unemployed would mean that I can blog more than ever. It probably should, but it hasn't happened yet. I've spent a lot of time looking for jobs and sending our resumes. Oh yeah, I drove the 2,000 miles back to Cincinnati, too.
One of the jobs I applied for asked for a list of my ten favorite albums. Sounds cool, right? It was a fun application, plus it gave me a new blog post. So here is the list I sent. I didn't have a lot of time to think things over, but I think it's pretty reflective of my tastes. So take a look and tell me what I missed:

Revolver - The Beatles: Sgt. Pepper’s and Abbey Road used to always top lists of best albums of all time, but this one has been popping up more lately. Revolver has been at the top of my list for more than 10 years, though. It is the perfect apex of The Beatles’ work as they left pop behind but weren’t bogged down in psychedelia.

This Year’s Model - Elvis Costello and The Attractions: This album was released in 1978, but it sounds amazingly relevant. Listen to “Lipstick Vogue” and tell me The Killers wouldn’t love to have written that song.

Yankee Hotel Foxtrot  - Wilco: It took some getting used to, but behind all the noise and feedback hides a beautiful, emotional album.

Reconstruction Site - The Weakerthans: I found this one at a record store in Indianapolis and a month after I picked it up I bought everything else the band had done. I’m a sucker for great lyrics and this album is full of them.

Fight Songs - Old 97s: Is it country? Is it pop? I don’t care. It’s catchy and I love it. 

Howl, Howl, Gaff, Gaff - Shout Out Louds: I’ve really been into Swedish pop lately and this is the album that started it all for me. It’s a little on the sad side but all the funny Swedish pronunciations make up for it.

Alligator - The National: This is the album I put on when I want to drive around town late at night. It automatically makes me feel 10% cooler.

Achtung Baby - U2: Achtung Baby could quite possibly be the perfect album. Just the right mix of fast and slow songs and not one tune I ever feel compelled to skip.

Let My Burden Be - Golden Shoulders: I used to live in the same town at Golden Shoulders frontman Adam Kline so maybe I’m rooting for the home team here. It makes it easier when the home team produces such an honest work of indie pop.

Failer - Kathleen Edwards: This album made the list just recently after I went on a road trip through the Southwest. It is my favorite road trip album on the list, full of stories about a woman and the men who done her wrong.