Wednesday, March 30, 2005


So it turns out that my knees are mostly OK, but that i will indeed have to undergo some light physical therapy to get them back up to normal. The doctor showed me some excercises i can do with weights on my ankles (which means that i have to pick up weights at some point), increasing 1 lb/week until i reach 10 lbs. This is a set of excercises i should do twice a day, 3 sets of 10 each time. I'll be getting a workout.

Teeth are still an issue. More to come later.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Sunday Night Fever

Yes, baby, i am groovin' this Sunday night.

It's been a great weekend. DaN and i packed up on Friday and headed up to Portland, where Alan Pennington met us at the bus station. We headed up to his and Lee's home in Windham, an extremely cute 2 story apartment with good space and trees :)

Lee and i had a fantastic time talking and catching up, drinking coffee and tea and looking at pictures while the guys (Alan, daN, and Zak) played Magic. I loved it. Saturday we all pretty much slept late and got a late start, and then we all went bowling! I did the best i've ever done! It was ten-pin, which is of course really fun, and it was just a really fun time. I'm no good at bowling, but it's great fun.

Then, we all went up to Margaritas at my request (and thank you, everyone, for being so accomodating -- i know that place isn't cheap), and i got to have the Enchiladas Rancheros i've been craving since September.

That night, we crashed with Pat (who had joined us for bowling and dinner), and we chilled this morning, had some cheap lunch, and went out to the bus station.

This evening, i walked down to the 1369 Coffee Shop in Inman Square and had some cake and coffee while writing in my journal and overheard an extremely interesting conversation of a teacher who works in the Cambridge Public School system. He talked about everything from MCAS testing to back in the day when he had Ben Affleck in his class. Apparently, J-Lo was through with him as soon as he wasn't sober anymore.

In case everyone is wondering, i'm dealing with all the crap that happened last week fairly well. I'll find a way to take care of everything. In the meantime, life doesn't suck. I have wonderful people in my life who are supportable, loving, and enjoyable, and i am grateful for everything in my life that is going right. A nice thought for Easter Sunday.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005


A recent fortune cookie (last week) said to me, "You will be sharing great news with all the people you love." Well, i gotta tell ya i'm still waiting for that great news. MAN am i waiting for that great news.

So i know i didn't get into Brown. The day before yesterday i got a refusal letter from UMass Amherst. Now, i know that every program is different, but instincts tell me that if i didn't get into UMass, then i won't be getting into Tufts or BU. Call me crazy. I know it's not the best to think like that, because technically anything is possible, but last time i checked, if you don't get into UMass, you don't really get in anywhere. But who knows? So, i'm trying to keep that avenue open in my mind, but there is a "temporary detour" sign in front of the grad school avenue.

Meanwhile, i had a great interview the other day at a staffing agency that has connections to working for this company with a a freaking stellar benefits package, and they're interviewing this week. I haven't heard anything back. Sigh. Please send the good vibes my way, because i apparently need them.

Now, i've been strong, and i've been able to be positive about things the whole way. And then today i went to the dentist. I had never had a cavite in my life. I am religious about my teeth, and i brush them all the time, with great vigor.

In short, i have fifteen cavities, 13 of which sprung directly from brushing to aggressively. Oh, the irony of it all. I was OK at the dentist. A bit overwhelmed, but OK. I haven't been able to bring myself to look at the cost vs dental coverage thing they kindly printed out for me. Seriously, they are really nice about it. But it's going to be a lot of money. And the worst part is that if i wait, it's easily double or triple what it will be now.

Well, that was really the straw that broke the camel's back. I got home and immediately started crying. Not just about the overwhelming amount of dental work and money i have to pour into it because i apparently brush to fucking hard (it's all erosion-based), but i probably won't be getting into grad school for real now, which is something i've worked very hard toward for a long time, and even though i'm not sure it's the best idea, i'm still having an extremely hard time with the feeling of rejection as well as the feeling of general failure (this is the reason daN and i moved to Boston. Let's not get into the pressure felt there). I don't know. Not to mention my recent diagnosis of some kind of patella syndrome "commonly found in heavy-set, elderly cleaning ladies who spend their entire days carrying heavy cleaning fluids up and down several flights of stairs," and i have to see an orthopedic surgeon person and a physical therapist about it. Not to mention that i'm on yet another medication, one that incidentally causes high blood pressure and is linked to strokes (this, in a family with a history of extremely high blood pressure and a grandfather who died from having three or four too many strokes).

So you could say it's been a hard week. I'm waiting for that good news promised to me in that fortune cookie. It's still in my pocket. I could really use it.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Oil Drilling in Alaska: What do you think?

This week's sardonic infographic by The Onion.

Feel free to add more in my comments section!

Saturday, March 19, 2005

The Skinny

I may have kept you posted on the Court Appeal and its results (which i still have to pay, incidentally... i'll use the money i got back from the state to do it! That oughta just about cover it.), but i am afraid that i have been negligent in updating everyone on my new 1970 La Pavoni Europiccolo chrome lever-pull espresso machine. Oh, the joy! It came via fedex on Tuesday (i know, i've been terrible), and the Bogs and their jet-lag-ridden joy to be back in familiar territory watched me as i opened, carressed, and practically breast-fed "my baby." Oh, i was so excited! I tell ya. The first run was a little noisy, given that i hadn't quite figured out what a couple of the switches were for (the online manual is for more updated versions of the same machine) but i figured it out, and the first shot of espresso i pulled was perfect. YAY! Oh, joy! I wish you could all see me now. The only downside of the machine is that it can't really froth. Oh sure, it can heat the milk up, but the attachment sucks, and i might possibly look into a new one. But i still have my Bellman stovetop cappuccino maker, which is really the BMW of home frothing. So i can run them both at the same time if i want froth. But i have made espresso when i got home just about every night, and i tell ya -- it's a piece of love in my heart that i can have a real demitasse of real espresso with a little piece of French chocolate on the side at home. From a machine that i got on ebay! I pull the lever, and the espresso comes out in two little strings! Aw! I'm so happy.

On a totally different note, last night Q and i went out. It was good for us to get out together away from other people, and out of the settings we're usually in. It was an expensive night, but completely worth it. We went to see her roommate play for the Patriots! Well, not really. Her roommate Jordan is the bassist for T the Band, and they were playing at The Rack in by Fanuiel (sp?) Hall at an event for the Matt Light Foundation (who, in case you guys aren't aware plays for the Pats). Matt Light, after getting offstage from singing the Mustache Song (a song about trying to bring back the 'stache as a fashion trend, and how his people have been persecuted), called me honey because i was standing where his very pregnant wife had just been. He apologized, turned around, and said, "There you are, honey!" or something like that. It was funny. And Q, who used her roommate's VIP pass to get into the VIP room, got to shake his hand and say "Great party." It was a good night. All in all, it was a good night. We didn't drink too much, though we may have had more if it weren't 5 bucks for a freakin' beer. No more bars in that spot of town. I'll stick to Inman and Davis Squares, thank you very much. Inman is even walking distance.

All in all, it's been a good week. Work has been stressful, and i almost quit yesterday, but refrained. I keep consoling myself with the fact that i have two interviews next week, and i'm trying for more. Hopefully one of these days it will pan out. Still haven't heard back from any more grad schools, but i'm hoping that's a good thing. They might be taking their time getting together financial packages for the "yes's." Who knows.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Court Appeal: Part Deux

Long story short, I am lucky to have only been charged $100. Apparently parking on the side of the street without car insurance is criminally illegal because some idiot could come along and hurt themselves on your parked car, and if you're not insured, the state gets slammed. What a scam this whole thing is. However, the two gentlemen were really nice about it, and as i disclosed more about the story, they looked at me in both horror and pity as they said, "oh, wow -- they could have hit you up for _____ for $2o00!" And i'd here the same statement again on the next sentence. I replied, "soooo... can i take the hundred dollar fine back and call it a day?" They said, "oh, definitely!" The whole time, the guys were looking at me like, "aw, poor little Mainer girl," once they found out i still have a Maine licence. Apparently, i have a lot of learning to do (and getting a Mass licence) before i get my Scion (around May).

So, i didn't get off the hook as i had hoped, but i came out feeling like i had gotten away with something anyway, having only to pay $100 instead of the $6000 they could have charged me with. At one point, one of the dudes asked, "So what are you appealing it for?" Hey, it was worth a shot, and at least i'll be paying it in March rather than at Christmas.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Court Appeal

I suppose there are more exciting things in life than going to appeal a 4 month old parking violation at the courthouse that is literally up the street (i'm going to walk there in less time that it takes to take a crap), but i'm pretty damned nervous. I've never done this sort of thing before, and i assume they're not going to let me off the hook. The violation is true: i had expired registration when i was parked in resident parking only. But i was waiting for the American Lung Association to get ahold of me, so what was i supposed to do? I ended up, as some of you may well know, giving it to one of the guys who worked at the place to where my car was towed, and i might not have done that if i didn't think it was a stupid idea to wait for the American Lung Association to get back to me. Not to say that it's not a good program, but a word to the wise: don't do it unless you have a parking space. They take a while.

So i'll let you know how it goes. I figured the worst thing that could happen was that i'd have to pay the dang fine in March instead of at Christmas, which in retrospect, was still a good idea, though i'm certainly hoping i can keep the hundred bucks, or that they're automatically dock it by half. Wish me luck.

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Speaking of jobs...

this isn't where i'm at, but it's certainly funny:
The Cat's Out of the Bag

Well, now my employers know that i need more money, and i'll go looking for it elsewhere if i need to. I sat down with my HR manager and told him the financial situation i'm in, which is that yes i did in fact recently go to Paris, but the whole trip cost me about $850, and it took me five months to save up for it because of all my other expenses combined with the fact that $13/hr doesn't go very far in Boston when you are reliant upon the T to get you everywhere (it costs way more to live by the T). I told him that i have to get a car, and that it would also be nice to take a chunk out of credit card debt before entering school, so i have to make those priorities. I told him the truth: i don't want to leave, but i need a whole lot more money in order to stay. He seemed very sympathetic, and talked to the president in private. I don't know anything yet, but i do know that something is in the air, and now they know, and the receptionist is also leaving, and they don't want to lose us both at the same time. We'll see what happens. In the meantime, i am applying for jobs online left and right, because it takes a WHILE to find a job. Even if i don't take them, i have to start applying now if i'm serious about getting a car.

In other news, daN and i are going to the Improv Asylum tonite with Laura and Dave! One of daN's kids at school has a mother who works as a bookkeeper for Improv Asylum, so she gave him 2 comp tickets. Dave and Laura have been before, and wanted someone to go with again, so this worked out wonderfully! I'm looking forward to it.

And now, i think i'm going to go out for a nice day. Nice-ish, anyway. I would prefer it if it weren't raining. I have to pick up a tamper for my espresso maker (no, it hasnt arrived yet), and i also want to hang out at Cafe Paradiso in Harvard Square and write in my journal and stuff. I might also want to swing by Filenes to exchange some powder for some foundation. Hmmm. So much to do, so little motivation to leave the house.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

This Just In!

1. I won the La Pavoni Europiccolo lever-pull espresso machine! Yay! It should be arriving sometime in the next couple of weeks. We all know how US Parcel Post can be. (That, and it hasn't shipped yet.)

2. I'm officially looking for a new job. Yep, i thought i was going to stay there till August, but it turns out that when i find out i could be doing exactly the same thing i'm doing now for 75% more money, i'll go ahead and apply for the job. I don't like having to choose between health insurance and getting a car. So, I have an interview on Thursday. Wish me luck.

3. My knees suck, and i have arthritis at 25. Not quite, but i have the precursor to arthritis, so i'm having x-rays, possibly physical therapy, etc.

If you happen to be a co-worker of mine, please be a pal and don't go telling the whole company until i actually know something. Thanks.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Earl-Eye in the Morrrnin'

DaN has taken off to go celebrate what very well may be one of his brothers' 30th birthdays today. Frankly, i just wasn't up for another trip to Maine involving only family, least of all this weekend. I just got back from Paris! I'm still getting used to my life here. But i wanted to follow him around and eat cereal with him before he left, and he left at 7:00. So here i am at 7.30 on a Saturday morning drinking my metamucill*[see below] watching my bids on ebay.

Soooo... last night a part of my beloved stovetop cappuccino machine kicked the bucket. You can buy this part for ten bucks, but i am not in the mood for paying MORE for something that cost me $85 to begin with (ok, so i got a 15% discount for working at the place i got it from, ooh, 10 dollars) only a year and a half ago. Therefore, told them so on the "contact us" page. I gave them the address where to send a new part for free. But then i got looking around in the page at all those other fun coffee things, and it's so expensive to buy what i REALLY want to buy new, so i decided to look on ebay. (new, over $500, used, i vowed to myself that if i saw it for u8nder $200 i would bid and not feel guilty no matter what. Coffee makes me happy.

So there it was on ebay last night for $155. Wow! I bid. The other bidder's highest bid was $175, and so i bid up to $185. I was in the clear. Now it's up to $197.50, so i don't know. There's only 5 hours left. So i bid on another one ending in 7 hours that's only at $150, so we'll see. I might come out of this a poorer woman with an expensive professional espresso machine that i've been wanting for YEARS. Seriously guys, this machine is my quarter-life crisis Mercedes.

[* All that rich food in France really did a number on my ability to digest anything. There's a reason that i tend to avoid eating a lot of wheat and sugar. Let's just say that it's hard for a vegetarian in France to have much else. (A vegetarian tourist without a kitchen, anyway.)]

Wednesday, March 02, 2005


Well, i hope i can do this any amount of justice. I might have to get my travel journal.

Monday, we left, and were in the air for a long time. Getting to the right terminal was a pain because it was booked through Travelocity, owned by US Air, but flown by United. *This will be important later.*

Tuesday morning, we landed. We got in much too early to check in, but the extremely nice lady at the desk (who was part of an extremely nice hotel crew) found us a room that was empty so we could get in. Yay! We napped, awoke, and spent the rest of the day with the Bogs' dear friend Niki, whom they met when they were in Grenada. We had a GREAT time. She is sincerely wonderful and intelligent. She showed us to a cool restaurant of one of her friends, showed us where she does some work, and showed us in general around Montmatre. It's too bad we didn't get to spend more time with her later, but we had so much to do!

Eventually, we parted after having had coffee and chocolate together at the place of Amelie's working, and daN and i found food and tried to go to sleep. Slept TERRIBLY. Jet lag is a bitch, and still plagues me. We dragged ourselves out of bed in time to eat breakfast, which was simple but lovely. Very different than in the states -- they actually have a breakfast room, and they ask your room number and seat you, then they bring you each a mini baguette and a croissant and ask whether you want coffee, tea, or cocoa. There are plenty of jellies to choose from, as well as butter and honey for the croissants. We always had tea, and i put honey on my croissant and in my tea. This idea of complimentary breakfast is a complete (and welcome) 180 from the typical continental breakfast of donuts and bagels of most inexpensive hotels (and our hotel was inexpensive).

That particular morning, daN and i went back to sleep. We eventually rose again around noon, and managed to go do some sightseeing. That's pretty much how most days went, only we got up earlier and earlier (by increments of 10 minutes, to be fair), and didn't go back to bed after the first day. We would get ready after breakfast, go out into our little neighborhood and get fixings for picnic lunch (usually consisting of some kind of bread, cheese or yogurt -- SO good in France, and fruit), and then venture into the center of Paris for sight-seeing.

The only down-side to all the sight-seeing is that it was unusually cold in Europe last week, and all the Parisians were complaining about it. DaN was fine with it, and i would have been too, if it had not been for the fact that we walked at least 6 or 7 miles everyday, and that much walking outside gets Lindsays cold really fast. Fortunately, daN was always up for stopping at a cafe in the afternoon to warm ourselves with some chocolat chaud, and we would usually sit and write or chat or chill for a bit. Our favorite spot, which was also my favorite on my last trip, was the cafe near the Musee de Picasso -- so much so that we didn't make it to the museum before it closed. Ah well. We saw a lot of good Picasso at the Pompidou Center for Modern Art.

Things we saw and/or stumbled across unintentionally as we walked: Le Louvre (of course), La Musee D'Orsay, Le Tour Eiffel, les Champs Elysees and l'Arc de Triomphe, Place de la Concorde (with the big old gold-tipped Egyptian obelisk that Napoleon took), les Jardins Tuilleries, Place de la Bastille, place des Vosges (where King Henry V and his cronies liked to hang out back in the day with its big arches and formal gardens), le Pantheon, Notre Dame, the cathedrale at St. Germain de Prez, and LOTs of other stuff. It usually went like this, "Hey, that looks like a monument! Let's go see what it is." And it worked quite well.

We ate picnic lunches, so we had dinners out, and our favorite place as i already mentioned was a proper Breton creperie. It was the highlight of our dining experiences. Our last dinner was unfortunately not so great -- it harkened of the family-style dining of Denny's. It was... pretty bad. The fixed price menu looked great! But now we know to warn people -- you get what you pay for sometimes. For 5 extra euros, we could have had another incredible meal at the creperie. Ah well. We enjoyed making fun of it together.

We had a wonderful time, and we were tired and ready to go home. The plane ride there was uneventful, which is good, considering it was 7 or so hours. I got to watch "Vanity Fair" though, which i have been wanting to see. I liked it. I'd like to read the book now :)

It was the transfer in between that proved to be interesting. See, the legal minimal layover for international connecting flights into the USA is an hour and fifteen minutes due to the fact the the first point of entry is where customs happens. Due to the number of hands in our reservations, the mininum layover was overlooked, to say the least. *This is the spot where the info above is important.* Our layover, in DC, was 58 minutes if we were lucky, which counted the amount of time we spend taxi-ing on the plane before it actually lets you out. The nice lady in Paris booked us on the next available flight in case we missed it, which was 6 hours and 15 minutes after we landed. So we really hoped we made it. So the plane lands. We shove our way out! We run down stairs instead of taking escalators to beat MORE of the crowd. We get through passport control. We run to the baggage claim!... and wait... for a long time... the clock is still ticking, and we have about 35 minutes before out plane to Boston leaves. It starts boarding in 5 minutes. Our baggage finally arrives! We run to customs! The line is moving quickly, because we were the first of 8, count-em, 8 international flights all to land at the same time, and they're not in the mood to piss passengers off just for the sake of it. They asked me, "what food to you have?" "Chocolate." "Go." They ask daN, "What food do you have?" "A piece of break i meant to throw out." "You can keep it. Go." We re-check our baggage (MUCH easier this time), and we RUN. We elbow old ladies! We stampeed over handicapped people (not really, but it was extremely crowded, and we were a lot ruder than usual). We MADE it. The plane boarded 3 minutes after we got there.

It's a good thing we made it, too, because that was the last flight to Boston out of DC for the day. Yes, we flew back in a Nor'easter. Phew. So otherwise, we wouldn't have been back home till yesterday.

Like i said, daN and i had a wonderful vacation, being tourists together and travel companions. I spoke French very well, and like last time, the people who didn't think i was French thought i was Italian because of my accent. :) Hee.

But MAN was it good to sleep in our bed.