Friday, December 30, 2011

Acting Like A Woman From A Soup Commercial

Tomorrow night, I'm going to wear a dress. Tomorrow night is New Year's Eve. Eddie and I are going to a party. The party invitation indicates that the festivities will mirror a tamer East Coast Vegas in a suburban house. We will play Vegas-style casino games and then we will dance. All that from an evite.

In planning a possible honeymoon to a tropical island where I will have to wear a bikini in public, I have been getting ahead in my eating and training routine. In planning a quick overnight trip to AC, I am thankful I already got ahead in these things. In accepting an invite to a party, I am more than happy I've already begun both.

I actually don't fluctuate all that much in shape and weight physically. In my mind, though, oh, man, I gain anywhere between 1 and 954 pounds on any given Wednesday. I never lose any weight. Sometimes I look more toned than other times. I also like to fake tan on random days in midwinter to look like I could be eternally sunkist.

So I did a happy dance this morning when I tried on the dress I plan to wear. It fits! Everything always fits, but every time I put something on, I am amazed and thrilled that it fits. (I fear the day it doesn't fit; I don't quite know what I'll do).

The dress I will wear tomorrow that I tried on today that fits is a dress I've owned, much like half my dresses, for about 10 years. The last time I wore this dress was to a wedding maybe five years ago. Before that, I think I wore it twice. I don't get to wear dresses a whole lot, so I don't see why I should buy more when I can rotate what I own if they are in mint condition and they fit (they fit!). I have maybe two dresses that are only five years old and then four dresses that are only two years old. They! All! Fit!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

His Best Christmas

As per tradition, Christmas Eve took place at my aunt's house. We had food. I drank too much wine, but it was yummy.

Christmas Day began at 1:45 AM because after the wine, I had half-caf coffee with dessert and apparently even half is too much for me. I was wide awake.

At 6 AM, Eddie moved, which to me meant that he was ready to get up. I put my face near his and he asked, huh? I asked, Are you up? He said, I guess so. He moved again, which to me meant he was getting out of bed, so I asked if he could get me some iced tea and an ibruprophen, and he did even though he wasn't really getting out of bed.

Then, because we were up, we opened presents! We gave each other a $50 limit. We both wound up giving each other four presents within that limit. He had only three to open though because a week an a half ago, he opened something from Amazon in the mail and found one of his gifts in the box because he doesn't read labels and the package was addressed to me.

After opening gifts, we ate breakfast and then played my brand new first ever video game for the PS 3 called You Don't Know Jack which is a trivia game that makes fun of you and makes sexual innuendos whenever possible. My kind of game!

The rest of Christmas day was split between going to my parents to see them and my brother and then driving to Staten Island to see his mom. Both we pleasant and cheerful and full of laughing, which is what holidays should be.

When all was said and done, I was half-passed out on our couch, and Eddie was bouncing off the walls because he had slept the night before and I had not. He told me it was his best Christmas ever. A lot of other people--our friends and our families and even acquaintances and people from work--have been making a big deal out of this being our first Christmas as a married couple. The two of us kind of didn't care about that, so I knew this being his best Christmas couldn't have been because he's married now. He then said, I got the most presents I've ever gotten. Haahahhhaaaaaaaaa. So true! The two of us had gotten lots of presents.

Then he pointed out, Your parents got me more presents than they got you so they must really like me better. Then I thought about it. Yes, actually, he had gotten more presents for him while I had gotten a few presents for me but mostly presents for us. I explained, That's because on my wishlist, I listed things we could use together. Ohhhh, he said. And then he went back to gleaming over his i-Pod and his new shiny ornaments. Heh heh heh. Man, I love him. Merry Merry!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Winning The Super Bowl!

After many weeks of football Sundays at BayBen in Brooklyn, Monsters Inc took home the Super Bowl trophy. What the hell am I talking about? Well...

Eddie has played in the same low-contact (meaning lots of contact and falling to the ground) football league for about 20 years. He continues to play every Sunday of the Fall season and sometimes during the Winter season (sometimes, here, means almost always except for that one season).

I do my best to support the team. That means, I wash his uniform, clean out his football bag, fill his water bottles, and sometimes go to the games (sometimes, here, means only when the weather is to my liking, which means only when it's sunny and 70 degrees or a big game, like the Super Bowl). I go, I sit in my folding chair, I talk to the other girls who show up to watch (usually AF and N), and then, for the most part, count down the minutes until the game is over. It's not that I don't enjoy football. I do. I've watched with my dad since I was born. The part I don't enjoy is the constant fighting with the refs after every single play and the inability for anyone to keep score, including the refs.

Sidenote: I just finished reading Chuck Klosterman's Downtown Owl, and his character's take on football is dead on. Read it. Fantastic book.

This year, to support the team, I went above and beyond silent cheerleader. I recorded the game on an old camcorder that uses a mini-VHS tape. My two challenges: (1) The tape had only 2 hours [which turned out to be only an hour and a half once I powered it on] and (2) the battery was dying [even though it was fully charged the night before].

Oh, wait, there was one more challenge. The day of the Super Bowl turned out to be probably the coldest day of this winter so far. The field is near water, so turn that thermometer down some. Oh, joy, it was a great day. At least the sun was out. At one point, the other two girls and I turned our backs to the field so that the sun could be on our faces. At another point, one of the girls said to me: We should go sit in my car because you're shivering. I was like, Am I? At that point, I couldn't tell what my body was doing. I kept walking in place like a crazy person. I told N and AF I used to be a cheerleader and don't know how I used to do it; they were like, Me too! Those days are not missed.

At another point, Eddie, who never ever ever never ever pays attention to me at all during the game because it's his team and he's too much involved with the game to think about anything else like his wife on the sidelines, came over and asked if I was okay. I was like, Not really, as I turned off the camera and put it in his bag so I could warm my hands for a while. He was like, Oh okay. Because really, there was nothing he or I could do about the cold if he also wanted the game recorded.

Because the battery ran out so quickly, I rested the camera for most of the middle of the game. When the two minute warning came for the end, I picked it up again, determined to get the end of the game even though the battery was blinking red.

The game was actually exciting with the opposing team trailing by only a touchdown in the last few downs when they had possession. All the girls were thinking the same thing: please don't get a touchdown...please don't get a touchdown. The worst feeling in the world is watching your guy lose on the field. Not only do you feel bad for him, you feel bad for yourself, knowing that you will be subject to moments of utter despair for an indeterminant amount of time--the rest of the day, the rest of the week, the rest of forever--there's no true measure.

The quarterback threw the ball. Five guys from Monsters Inc went up for it and shut it down. The cheering began. We cheered from the sidelines. Then I looked over at the other two girls and said, I recorded it and don't even really know what happened other than we won.

Then the boys came over jumping and hugging and chanting and loving. Eddie walked over and hugged AF who was cheering and then walked away. Nice husband. He did hug me later on, though, so that was nice.

He came home with a huge trophy. Better yet, he came home with a smile on his face. So did I. He's a really good football player. He's really smart and, more importantly, really passionate. That all makes it worth the frostbite.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Bigger Tree, More Work

This year, Eddie and I have inherited my family's tree. My mom decided she wanted a smaller tree that already had lights on it, so we took the tree I've been using since I was born and that my parents have owned forever. We have no lights. We will buy them on sale at the end of this season so that we have lights next year. The lights that came with the tree are really outdoor lights and they are ugly; they have been the bane of my Christmas for the past several years. When we began to put it up, Eddie realized that the base was crooked. It's been crooked for as long as I can remember, and our tree has always been slightly slanted to the left. This year, Eddie decided to take care of it:
He did get it together. We did put up the tree. We did decorate. It's so Christmas.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

From Midtown To Uptown To Downtown To Midtown

Eddie loves me. I know this because I get an idea in my head about something we should do, and he does it without question. I then hint about the drawbacks of doing it, and he gets even more enthusiastic about doing it.

This is how we wound up on a grand tour of the city, ending with near-starvation and very close to the inability to walk.

Last year, we went on a whirlwind Christmas extravaganza of windows and pretty glittery things. This year, I wanted to see some of the things we'd skipped. These things were The Met Museum's tree, the tree at the South Street Seaport, and the shops at Bryant Park. The Met is way uptown. The Seaport is at the most southern part of the city. These are not close to each other at all. Yet, they were included in the same excursion. Because I'm a nutjob.

The Met:
The Neopolitan Tree is so pretty. I've seen it only once before, so I wanted to see it again. I've never been to the museum at night, so that was another factor for going. The third reason was the Stieglitz exhibit that I was uber excited about seeing because I recently watched the film Georgia O'Keefe and couldn't get over how good it was (or how much of an asshole Stieglitz was, or was portrayed to be). So we spent 15 bucks for the both of us to get into the museum using the rationale to ourselves that we would not be partaking in all of the museum. Though, when we went the first time around, we paid about the same and did take in the musueum in its entirety. Ah, the spirit of giving.

I hadn't realized how huge the Steiglitz exhibit was going to be, so when we were halfway through, Eddie was not interested at all. I sped up my viewing process by skimming some of the artists I'd never heard of. I also got him more involved by pointing at naked things and whispering, Boobies!!! Because we're both really twelve.

Once we found the tree, Eddie found a new activity. Two large signs and a guard stood at the front of the tree: No photos allowed. That was dumb. There's no reason to not be able to take a picture. Plus, on the other sides of the tree, no such signs or guards existed. So we had a mission: Take a picture. Not of the tree, mind you. Of the sign that said no photos. This was the last exhibit we were seeing, so if we got kicked out of the museum, it would be fine, but I really did not want to be kicked out of anywhere.

Mission Accomplished.

Without being kicked out.

The Seaport:
Down down down we went and when we emerged from the subway, we realized, hey! This is where we spent our honeymoon! We were in the vicinity of our hotel. We made our way through the construction on the streets and hit the seaport. It was desolate for the most part, but the tree was lit up and bright and huge and pretty. We walked to the end of the pier and then decided to leave rather quickly because the shops at the park were going to close soon.

Bryant Park:
I wanted to see the shops. Oooh, they were so cute. We walked through like we were walking through a mini village. Eddie spotted a booth selling cider and saw that I couldn't control my excitement at the thought of warm cider so he got me a cup with cinnamon sticks. Some people were drinking it without the cinnamon, which should be outlawed. Cider needs cinnamon sticks. Otherwise, what's the point? Exactly.

We then found the tree. I didn't realize there would be a tree there. I'd forgotten there was ice skating. So we watched some skaters for a while and gawked at the tree. The ice was packed and people were falling and the line was around the park. Crazy. That's not worth it. Instead, we window shopped and then decided, hey we should eat before we pass out.

We hiked back towards Penn. At this point, I could not feel my toes. The weather was actually warmer than I'd expected. The problem with my feet was that we'd walked more than I'd thought we would. We took the subway between stops, but we'd spent more time in the places we'd gotten to than I thought, and then the walk back to Penn was the beginning of the end. We settled on the TicToc Diner because it was close.

This whole time, we'd had no unusual encounters, which was odd since we always have a little big of weird creep into our treks. Then came the double punch. First, when we were waiting at the sign that said to wait to be seated, some woman came into the diner behind us and started telling us where to sit. She did not work there. She told us three times. Then when someone came over to seat us, she instructed him to tell us where to sit.

After we ate, we walked to Penn and saw Santa get into a fight with a drunk man, who we think was homeless. We're pretty sure that Santa was defending the honor of a drunk or stoned blonde girl whose boyfriend was yelling, Santa! It's okay, Santa! It's fine! Santa, stop, Santa! Meanwhile, Santa was grabbing the drunk man by the shirt and yelling at him and the man was half-yelling half-slurring back. Eddie was slowing down and I was like, let's go inside quick! He was like, I want to see the outcome of this. Because he's a boy.

I'm happy to report that we had no problem on the train. We used our tickets we received from the MTA/LIRR after the great incorrect ticket punching debacle. Take that, Ticket Puncher Man.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Dance Blessings

The last dance class was uneventful. We didn't learn any new dances, even though it's a class. We didn't aim to perfect any dances, even though it's a class. Instead, we repeated every single dance we could cram into an hour and a half. Some were easy. Some were difficult. Actually, only one was semi-difficult, and the rest was cake.

Jean, the woman who won't teach the dance by Pink because she doesn't like the language and ignores the lyric in "Toes" about having your "ass" in the sand, wished everyone a very blessed Christmas at the end of class. I looked at S and repeated, Yes, blessings for you. I'm sure she'll have a Christ-filled Hanukkah.

On our way out, we thanked Jean and said goodnight. She came over and said she hoped we would come back since she didn't teach the songs we liked. What the? Really? We liked the songs and she agreed to play most of what S requested. Hmmm. This was an interesting turn of events. All this time, I thought Jean had the upper hand....we have the power now. We have the power!

But we still haven't learned Raise Your Glass, so maybe not. We assured her we'd be returning to class next session. To learn some new dances. But also, most likely, dances we already know.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Art Target Acquired

The first Saturday of each month is Target Saturday at The Brooklyn Museum of Art. Since they had two exhibits I wanted to see and it was FREE, I wanted to go. So that's where Eddie and I drove to in the evening. We found a parking spot on the street about two blocks away so we didn't have to pay the parking fee. As we approached the museum, we saw massive amounts of people. Then we realized it was not a line, but a crowd waiting to see a performance. Phew! It was crowded but we didn't have to deal with lines.

Basically, we walked in, got a map, and off we went. There were people everywhere, but it wasn't wall to wall once we got into the exhibits. We went off to look at everything since he'd never been there. When we went to go to the second floor, we quickly decided that we would not take the elevator at any time because they were packed and we don't really like people, so we didn't want to be that close to them.

We took the stairs to the second floor. The second floor smelled baaaaadddddd. I don't know why. It was just really icky. We plowed through it and then made it to the next floor. Or did we?

You see, the museum is so huge that we kept forgetting what floor we were on and what floors we'd gone to. None too helpful was the map that showed certain pieces of art that seemed to be on one floor when they were on other floors in the actual museum. But getting lost is part of the fun.

I learned that he likes Egyptian stuff when we went to the Met, so I directed us towards the Egyptian collection. At which point we realized the fun we could have with the camera.

When we got to the next floor, we walked around and around and then thought we'd finished until I saw a sign for one of the exhibits I wanted to see--it was about erotic stuff. The security guard came up to me and was like, You didn't see it? I was like, no. She said, go back through BOTH double doors. We hiked all the way back through a wing and then through BOTh double doors and then we found it. Wow. Lots of boobies and weiners. Everywhere.

This is also where we began to find the other wonders of the museum: the visitors. Two guys, unimpressed with one specific piece, decided they needed to move on. One commented to the other: Let's go check out O'Hara's dick. The other agreed vehemently.

To my knowledge, none of the artwork was entitled "O'Hara's Dick," but I do know that some of the works were inspired by O'Hara's poetry (including one with twine and a fork and some shutters that Eddie shook his head at). In fact, many pieces were inspired by several poets such as the painting Poets (clothed) and then Poets (naked) which also included O'Hara with three other poets and what they might look like naked if they stood and sat in exactly the same order around a bench around which they stood and sat with clothes on.

While returning to the main part of the floor to go to the final floor, we passed by a little Asian lady who was standing on one leg, arching herself to the side with an arm over her head. We looked at the sculpture she was in front of. It was doing the same thing in a much more successful fashion. Take note--this was happening in the busiest and narrowest part of the museum, so how she balanced is a mystery. Also a mystery: why she was imitating the sculpture.

In an attempt to go around her, I veered left. There, I encountered a very tall, very old man who decided to snort quite loudly and contort his face. I heard Eddie start to snicker behind me. I veered right instead and Eddie grabbed onto me and was like, you heard that, right? We left for the fifth floor laughing.

The final floor was set up, as Eddie observed, like a store. It was like a stock room of odds and ends. We saw a huge statue of a naked woman. Time for fun with the camera. The plan was I would stand behind her and he would take a picture of me through her legs. It was a great plan.

Except for the photographer obsessed with her from every angle. He was there for a good fifteen minutes taking the same shot of her big butt. Over and over. Then when we thought he was leaving, he took pictures of her boob. Over and over. He retreated only to reappear on the floor next to her. He was turned towards the bicycle next to her so I hopped behind the statue and we got our shot before he could turn around.

Then we got out of there. We'd been through the museum entirely in a little over two hours. On our way out, I saw some activity at the front windows and realized, hey there are slicked down body builders in the window. They were posing for a picture from the inside so their backs were to the outside. Maybe no one realized that we could see from the outside. Maybe no one knew how a window works. When they stopped posing for the picture, they turned and saw the outside crowd and everyone was cracking up, and one woman was trying to get one of the body builders to call her.

We decided to skip the body building show and instead head to Roll N Roaster. They both involve protein but only one offers cheese on everything. Now that's a business model I can get behind: Cheese. On. Everything.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

If One Day I Disappear, Look For Me In Scottland

The car ride to dance class served as a place for great debate. AV was in town and S wanted to know how to get her into the class. Should we approach Jean outside the dance room? Should we go up to her after we settle in? I opted for just starting to dance and seeing how long it took for Jean--or anyone for that matter--to realize someone else was in the room who is not really part of the class.

All this discussion became a moot point as we arrived at exactly 8 in the parking lot. That means that Jean had been dancing for at least 40 minutes already because as we know by now, "on time" is early and anything after that is late. So we jumped right into the dance. Actually, the music was on pause but we scurried into place and basically ignored what anyone else was doing until Jean put the music back on.

I had originally thought Jean was not going to notice AV at all or it would take at least have the class time to realize it. Good thing I did not bet on it. A lot of regulars were missing from class, so AV was not hiding in a crowd. Also, since she'd missed the instructional portion of the first dance, she was pretty much on her own, one beat behind, though she was holding her own.

After the dance, here came Jean, asking who our new dancer was. S and I introduced her as she introduced herself so it came out as saldkjfdlkj;ltdjhlkgjlkdfhklht, but everyone got the gist that she was visiting from out of town. Then Jean asked, Will you be back next week too?, all excited. No, we all answered simultaneously. Jean looked disheartened. Somehow she found the strength to move on.

We learned one new dance, the Bachata. (Remember when Robbie tells Johnny that their final dance of the summer is going to be the PaCHANga! in Dirty Dancing? That's kinda what this reminded me of). Then everyone got into a very serious discussion about how Jean chooses the dances. She chooses them FIRST. Then she checks to see if they are on YouTube. She laughed as she described her beginner class and their reliance on YouTube, and then claimed they were getting impressively better. No one asked Jean where she chose the dances from, though. If not from YouTube, where is this all-powerful, all-knowing list? She made sure we understood that we needed to search Bachata LINE DANCE, and there was only one link for it on the side in blue.

I just searched for it. I found several links for it. None of them were in blue. Some of them were still a completely different dance. Still, I found one that fits us. I especially enjoy the guy in the front row since he makes it his own, facing in directions that face no one wall at once.

Which is really what our class is like.

We also did Homeward Bound which has fast become my favorite dance because of the restart that half the class does not do, which means people send themselves flying across the room with these long strides to the side while the rest of us do a completely different part of the dance because it skips the flying part. Unfortunately, Jean gave too much warning and only one person missed the restart only once instead of two or three people missing it twice. Sigh. It's sad when people learn.

S asked for Something In The Water, and amazingly, Jean played it next. I really love the song, and the dance is a bonus. It is also pretty easy to pick up on. AV saw that Jean was going so fast, but that was because we had already learned these dances. I reassured AV that sometimes Jean goes just as fast and then stops teaching even with new dances.

We did the Love Letter Waltz. Somehow, we all kept bunching up on top of each other even though we were spread out at first. At one point, we were doing a half turn and I felt Jean coming at me, face to face, head on. Startled, I went to turn but was on the wrong foot and wound up literally running in a circle back towards S, who took one look at me running on my tiptoes and began to laugh and gasp at the same time. I ran right into place, though, and had much more room to finish the dance.

Oh, and I almost fell over at one point because of a random attack of the crazy legs.

Class wound down and as we got our coats, the woman from last week brought over a bunch of papers she'd printed out for us about Scottish Folk Dancing. Again, she praised the dance style and the dancers. She's been going to the classes since only September and she's already got so much passion for it. She really wants us to go because we're young, so much younger than the older folk who kind of can still dance. She even suggested we go a bit early like she does to get in extra dance time with the instructor. From the classroom, down the hall, down the stairs, and through the parking lot, she raved about the class and the style, even after S broke the news that I would totally not be interested since they change dance partners during the dances and I'm not that kind of girl.

She said we should call her if we decide to go. Then she was off to her car. S pointed out that with all the energy and encouragement, she still hadn't given us any way to actually contact her. Maybe she's torn between having to do her duty to convert us and not wanting to brainwash us Scottish-style. I still haven't checked it out on YouTube; I'm scared that maybe I'll like it too much.

Friday, December 2, 2011

A Sporty Thanksgiving

Eddie has always wanted to be able to stay home and watch football on Thanksgiving. It's a simply wish, really. One day to eat with family and watch football with family. He asked that we have everyone over to our place for the day. I passed the idea along to my parents and brother who were all on board. He asked his mom, telling her that he would pick her up the night before and she could stay over for a night or two. She was on board.

So we hosted Thanksgiving. Now for Eddie's idea of hosting. He's been working on his hosting skills since January's Super Bowl bash when he invited all his friends and my friends over and there were eighteen people here, some sitting on the floor, some wrestling in our bedroom, and everyone eating only when I put the food out while he watched the game. His skills became much improved by September when he threw my birthday party in the backyard. He took care of inviting people, ordering food, and greeting guests. Poor D, however, sat without anything to drink for about half an hour before I kindly reminded him that she'd asked for a drink (mainly, I yelled across the yard: D is dying of thirst!!!).

S thinks Eddie would make a good maitre d. He likes inviting people and greeting people. I think Eddie's ideal hosting situation is to be like, Hi! Welcome to my party! Now go see my wife if you want anything!

I put out crackers, cheese, pumpkin butter, and carrots for noshes. My brother was down with the pumpkin butter. He likes jam so I really had put it out for him to try, knowing he'd probably like it. It's got a spicy sweetness to it that is very delicious. Oh, and Eddie put out olives. Black olives. He doesn't like basic foods like peas but he'll eat a barrel of black olives in one sitting.

He helped make the rice and the mac and cheese. He also poured drinks. His hosting skills are ever evolving.

I made yams and string beans. By "made," I mean, opened the can and heated the food in the microwave. I put them in pretty bowls. My mom took care of the meat, ordering turkey breasts from Omaha steaks and getting a free ham to boot. My brother brought apple cider. After tasting it, he said, This is just juice.

I heated up gravy in a fancy gravy boat that I also use for sauce when we have pasta. In reality, it's supposed to be used for milk as part of my tea set, but it serves many, many purposes involving various liquids.

The big deal of the day was my spaghetti squash. I was excited to show Eddie the final product. He promised to try it, which I did not even ask him to do. Mr. Picky Eater Pants does not eat a wide variety of veggies, and so I was not going to tell him not to try it. I just thought he'd think it was cool the way it comes out of the rind looking like pasta, hence its name.

I was right. He kept saying, that looks so cool! How'd you do that? I told him, with a fork--it just comes out that way. The kitchen smelled like a pumpkin. They're in the same family. I asked him if he wanted to try to bake the seeds. He was like, throw them out right now. Heh heh.

We all ate. We all played with my mom's i-Pad. We all watched football. It was a good time.

Then we made tea and coffee and hot chocolate and ate pastries that Eddie's mom had brought and coconut custard pie that we'd bought specifically for my dad.

Then we watched more football. And then some more football. Everyone was actually watching. No one was nodding off in a food coma. No one was itching to change the channel. It was a football Thanksgiving afterall.