Saturday, January 30, 2010

Big Nose

No matter how many photographs I take of Rocky, his nose appears SO BIG. In real life, he's much better proportioned. We can send men to the moon and yet we still haven't solved the whole "the camera adds an extra 15 pounds" thing? In Rocky, that's 15 pounds of nose.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Melding Soap

Peter has saved us hundreds of dollars worth of soap by perfecting this talent: soap melding

Soap melding is what we call the combining of the small, about to be used up soap with a new bar of soap, ensuring no soap wastage. You might call this gross, but we call it resourceful.

The small white soap is this wonderful hand-made hotel soap we got at the Hard Rock Hotel in Seminole, Florida (one of the best hotels ever!) The other one is L'Occitane Honey & Lemon Hexagonal Soap.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Ya Gonna Call Security?

Tuesday nights are Free Movie Nights at Clearview Cinemas for all of those who are members of the Optimum Rewards program. For those of you who have no idea what that means, it's a program that my cable provider offers to members who use them for cable, internet, and phone services.

When I told my father about this program, he asked me to sign him up for it, and I promptly did this as soon as I went home. I told him to look out for a card in the mail a month from that day. Fast forward about two months later, my mom asked me whatever happened with that card thing. I had a suspicion that my dad misplaced it/threw it away. But when I asked him about it, he told me that it never came in the mail. When I pressed him on this, he got mad.

So I backpedaled and told him that it was okay if he threw it away, I just had to know this bit of information so that I could let Optimum Rewards know that they had to send him another card. I took my own card from my wallet and asked him if he had seen something like it come in the mail.

He sheepishly told me that he sorta kinda recognized the card and that he MIGHT have....thrown it away. Because it looked LIKE JUNK. And how was HE supposed to know what that was? There was nothing on it saying FREE MOVIE CARD.

You see this right here, people? This was my entire childhood with my father in one frustrating pull-your-hair-out nutshell.

Fast forward a year later when I signed Peter's mother up for the card and she did THE SAME THING.

What part of WATCH OUT FOR THIS IN THE MAIL do people not understand?

ANYWAY, I don't know if they've done studies on this, but Tuesdays are the MOST DIFFICULT day for us to get our acts together and go out on a date night. After weeks and weeks of Peter being way too busy to go out on a Tuesday night, he had a free Tuesday last night!!


We went to see Up in the Air.

The thing with Free Movie night is that sometimes there will be people in the audience who are just there because the movie is free since it is the type of movie they would NEVER pay good hard-earned money to watch. When Peter and I walked into the theater, we noticed that 3/4 of the audience were made up of people who, shall I say, look more like the sort who would prefer Transformers or the latest Vin Diesel vehicle.

Throughout the movie, there was a group of ladies in the far right of the theater who were acting like the movie theater was their house. And by their house, I mean a place where they can get all relaxed and shout for their kids to come down the stairs because actually walking up those stairs to talk to them like people who deserve that type of dignity would be WAY TOO MUCH WORK.

So finally, after about the fifth outburst from those ladies, I hear a scurfuffle with people SHUSHing them and there were unkind words exchanged. Then one of the ladies yell out, "Whatcha gonna do? Ya gonna call SECURITY....AGEEEEN?!"

It was the "Ageeen" that made me laugh out loud. There was such a derisiveness in the way she said it, like she was flush with the power of being such an asshole.

I mean, the poor guy sitting in the middle of the aisle just cannot enjoy his free movie. And when he finally cannot bear it any longer, he calls Security, who is supposed to handle this type of behavior. Unfortunately, we can't expect Security to do anything because doing something would require some sort of effort. And people just don't make an effort at work anymore. So the loud ladies totally get away with being loud without any consequence.

After all, how can you expect people to show pride in the jobs they are doing when there is no more job security in this country? We're all just waiting around for robots to take over our jobs anyway. At least, that's the lesson I took away from the movie.

Pretty soon, the loud ladies at the movie theater are going to ruin our lives.

Monday, January 25, 2010

But I Have Two Jobs!!

We have made an active decision to cook at home more, which means that I'm the one cooking 99% of the meals. Why? Because Peter has two jobs. He does work really hard. Just the other day he came home for lunch and before his meal he checked his inbox. He had 100 emails from people and it was not yet 11:30am! And this was for only one of his web sites.

It's been a running joke in this house that he has two jobs--and it's true, he does bring home the bacon. I bring home more of the occasional baguette or a box of cupcakes.

Yesterday when I asked him whether he was going to go outside and pick up the poop, he said, "But I have two jobs!"

So of course I went outside to take care of it before this monster rainstorm hit--mushy dog poop all over the yard doesn't bother me. The steppage of messy dog poop by our disgusting dogs fills me with horror.

And then when I came back into the house, Peter was all, "Oh, I was just kidding."

"Right. Well I didn't see you running out to help me."

"But I have two jobs!"

A part of me feels that I should be annoyed when he says this, but he does it with such an impish smile that I can't help but laugh.

Friday, January 22, 2010

A Breakthrough Moment From Jessica Biel

It's not every day that I open my inbox and I find an email addressed to me from a Jessica Biel. I'm all, there's only one Jessica Biel I KNOW. And even though I never click on junky emails, I looked at this one and here is what it said:

Dear Vogue Reader,
It's funny when you think about the idea of a breakthrough moment in someone's career. A few times in my own life, I have been told by people, 'Oh! This is your breakthrough moment or that is your breakthrough moment.'

But you can't put too much weight into that idea because there really isn't one moment when you actually feel you have arrived. I feel as an actor you are trying to work as hard as you can and make the best decisions you possibly can, and you have to take each moment for what it is.

All of that said, a part of me always wanted to be on the cover of Vogue. But to have it actually happen? That felt incredibly special to me.

I suddenly found myself sitting in this beautiful location and wearing the most amazing couture, with Mario Testino shooting and Tonne Goodman from Vogue editing the story. I just remember feeling very grateful, wanting to work hard, enjoy the day, and really take it all in.

I hope you enjoy the February issue, which hits the newsstands this week.

Jessica Biel

Now I'm all, I'm supposed to have a BREAKTHROUGH MOMENT? No one has ever said to me, "You know that creative brief you wrote last year was totally your breakthrough moment in content development."

"That roasted tomato soup? Totally your breakthrough moment in the kitchen."

Do people get that said to them? What kind of crazy is she talking about? As far as I'm concerned, that Jessica is ridiculous if she thinks she's had a breakthrough moment IN HER CAREER. I've seen some of her movies. If those movie scripts had been any good, Julia Roberts would have been in them. And there are probably three other Hollywood actresses stealing Jessica's breakthrough moments.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Haiti Coverage

Like a lot of Americans I've been watching news coverage of what's been going on in Haiti. I really can't watch it for long. Is it just me, or are the reporters almost giddy with excitement when they're out there? It's kind of gross, but maybe I'm being paranoid.

Another thing that I've noticed is that every time I've turned on the news, the story is about a blonde girl or woman who had been in Haiti when the earthquake struck and that she's been discovered to be safe. Then there's the whole interview with their families here at home and how they are so thankful.

The thing is that I haven't seen one black Haitian-American family being interviewed about the family they have in Haiti. Granted, it could be that every time I turn on the television, the reporters just happened to be interviewing white families, but I don't know...

So yes, the coverage has been irking me--but whenever I ask someone about their experience, I've discovered that most of my friends are logging online for their news and not watching television, so they haven't come across my experience.

Peter thinks the best thing to do is to stop watching how the news is exploiting people and to send money to the Red Cross instead. And of course, he's always right.

Here's the link to the Red Cross.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

ebay Person leonhart.306 is SOOO On My Shit List

A few weeks ago I sold a bunch of items on ebay--and wouldn't you know it, the ONE ITEM that I didn't purchase insurance for got "lost." I actually believe that the ebay person I sold the item to totally got it and pretended it was lost, but that's neither here nor there because it was my fault for not taking precautions.

I guess I figured that since I didn't sell the item for that much, why bother paying more money for the insurance?

Being new to ebay, when the guy asked me for a refund, I quickly sent it to him--not making him cancel the transaction first so that I could at least get my ebay fees back--which is only a few dollars, but it is the PRINCIPLE. I know, that PRINCIPLE thing gets me every time.

So I've sent the guy a couple of emails that he never answers and when I asked him to cancel the transaction, he REFUSED.


Of course Peter is all, "This is stupid, get a life."

Anyway, I have his home number and ebay says that I should call him and try to resolve this ourselves.

Hmmmm. I want to call him at 3am in the morning, but that's harassment.

It really burned me up because he was all, "If you refund my money I won't write you a negative review."

Then I refunded his money quickly--I was going to anyway--then he wrote me a totally unfairly negative review and lied about the entire transaction.

That's really the part that burned me up.

And you know the part that really annoys me? That this whole stupid thing is irritating me in the first place! I'm annoyed that this stupid thing is annoying me. It's such a stupid thing and easy to let go, but I can't stand it that this guy is such a jerk!

I hope that an avalanche falls on him.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Orange Julius

When my father decided to open up his own business, he was seriously considering an Orange Julius franchise, which was so cool with me because I LOVED those things. We had a store at the Queens Mall and my dad wanted to open one up in Manhattan.

My parents really struggled financially in those days, so I don't think my father was able to cobble together the franchise money. But I still remember all the Orange Julius literature scattered all over the house (because to my father, the living room floor is a filing cabinet for all your important papers). When I found out that he decided to open up a Japanese restaurant instead, it was one more childhood disappointment.

For some inexplicable reason, Peter asked me completely randomly the other day, "What's an Orange Julius like?"

And I said, "Liquid AWESOME!"

Poor, poor Peter, never having had the childhood pleasure of an Orange Julius. No wonder he didn't like to eat fruit. His parents always bought mushy apples and pears and put bananas in the fridge. For the first few years of our relationship, my mother would give me Asian pears and I would ask Peter if he wanted a slice. He always turned up his nose and said, "I hate pears."

Then one day, he plucked one from my plate and said, "That's NOT a PEAR!!"

I said, "Huh?"

"Pears are gross and this is DELICIOUS!"

And I was all, "Yeah, well, WELCOME TO MY WORLD. I only eat DELICIOUS."

Once I realized that Peter was just fruit-ignorant, I introduced him to Fuji apples ("I didn't know apples could be crunchy"), pomelos ("That's like a huge-ass grapefruit"), pomegranates ("So, do I swallow the seeds?"), and other delights.

He asked me to look up an Orange Julius recipe and I found a couple of them on the internet--after some trial and error, we made up this recipe that tastes EXACTLY like my memory of an Orange Julius. Unfortunately, the closest Orange Julius location is 50 miles away and I haven't tried one since my age contained single digits, so I can't say that it definitely tastes this way. But it tastes like what my brain remembers.

The Orange Julius Recipe

6 ounces frozen orange juice concentrate
1 cup milk
1 cup water
1/4 cup agave nectar
1 teaspoon alcohol free vanilla flavor (that's what we have at home--but you can use extract)
8 ice cubes

Put everything in a blender and process until smooth and you'll have LIQUID AWESOME.

In order to make a slushy and not an Orange Julius, substitute the water and 8 ices cubes with one tray full of ice cubes and you'll get SLUSHY AWESOME.

FYI: The first time I used Trader Joe's frozen Organic Orange Juice concentrate--and it came out perfect.

The second time, I used my local Stop&Shop's Sunrise Valley frozen orange juice concentrate, which made the drink slightly too orangey--so you'll have to calibrate according to whatever concentrate you use.

Monday, January 11, 2010

I'm Totally Taking the Credit

My sister and I have the same voice, which has always made it difficult on people who call the house, especially Jenny's friends. One time I picked up the phone, said, "Hello," and her friend started going on and on about a private matter and when she finally took in a breath I said, "Do you want to speak to Jenny?"

To which she replied, "Uhm. Uh.... Yes. And all that other stuff? I was just kidding."

I left a message on my sister's cell phone today and when she called me back, she was cracking up.

She said, "When I hear MY OWN VOICE on the voicemail, you don't have to say, 'It's your sister.' I mean, it's easy to figure out who it is because why would I be calling MYSELF?"

Then later on, we both said, "COOL!" at the very same time and it was kind of strange. Not only do our voices sound exactly alike, but our inflections were exactly the same.

"Do you think you talk like me because you imitated me when you were younger or do you think that the way we talk is totally genetic?" I asked.

"It's okay," she said. "You can take credit for my personality."

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Things to Do Before I, You Know...

Instead of New Year's Resolutions, I decided to finally put together a list of the things I want to do in life. And it was actually kind of cathartic, writing them down. It makes me take these nebulous ideas out of my head and turn them into serious goals. Like, hey! If this is the only life I get, what do I want to do?

This list will be ever-expanding--whenever I come up with more things I want to do, I'm going to add them. Although I think I've made enough New Year's Resolutions here for a lifetime.

Go shopping in London
Safari in Kenya
See the pyramids in Egypt
Watch the sunset in Bali
See the fireworks at Niagara Falls
Experience bioluminescent swimming
Take another photo at the Grand Canyon
Go to a fashion show in Paris
Buy a watch in Switzerland
Leave a can of succatash on Elvis's grave at Graceland
Go to Seattle to see if it's always raining
Eat at a vegetarian restaurant in Portland
Snorkel in bora bora
Go to Hawaii just to go
Introduce Peter to my gajillion cousins in Taiwan
Take Peter to the camera shop and Harajiku in Tokyo
Swim in the Dead Sea (like Jesus!)
Take a photo with that big statue in rio de janero
See if Hong Kong really is as cool as everyone says it is
Live outside the US for a period of time
Take an Alaskan cruise
Do the American road trip in an RV
Go to Newfoundland
Experience the Taj Mahal
Own waterfront property
Move somewhere it doesn't snow
Attend a festival in Rome
Explore the ruins of Greece
Stay at the fancy shmancy Canyon Ranch spa
Attend the Hay Festival in Wales
Learn how to use my camera and take awesome photos
Grow an organic garden
Have a baby
Meet Oprah
Learn how to bake pies
Adopt a beagle or king cavalier
Adopt a miniature horse
Have my home photographed for a decorating magazine
Write a Modern Love article in the NY TImes
Write a book
Make my friends some bath bombs
Open up my own store
Renew our wedding vows (and only invite people I like and to not be sick this time)
Start to compost our garbage
Write a song
Get a steam shower or sauna or hot tub
Learn how to play drums
Learn how to play the harp
Learn how to make bath bombs
Learn how to make a rag doll
Keep the house organized and clean
Finally learn html
Read the classics
Earn a phd
Win a pulitzer
Learn how to sail
Learn how to swim the front crawl
Become financially secure
Learn how to fix a car
Be happy with my weight (or get to a weight I'm happy with)
Learn how to knit
Learn how to sew
Learn how to sculpt
Learn how to paint well
Take a culinary course with my mom
Meet Julianne Moore
Walk the entire length of Manhattan
Learn how to belly dance
Attend a world series
Attend a superbowl
Learn spanish
Learn french
Learn japanese
Learn italian
Write a will
Learn how to juggle
Donate $1,000,000 to a charity
Buy a plug-in car
Ride on a hot-air balloon
Go to Monte Carlo
Ride a gondola in Venice
Take a pottery class
Learn how to make jewelry
Form a band
Go Zorbing
Throw the first pitch at a baseball game
Become a guest on a TV show
Learn how to woodwork
Learn how to walk on stilts
Experience the northern lights
Go to all 50 of the American states
Swim in the largest swimming pool in the world
Invent something
Revamp my blog and make it awesome
Dinner at Per Se
Make a short film
Write a cookbook
Watch a space shuttle launch
Visit every baseball stadium in the major leagues
Get an invitation to the White House
Receive a personal letter from a super-famous person

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Which One to Buy?

The single most annoying thing about buying appliances are that manufacturers make so many of them!

When I was shopping for a stove, there are a gazillion stoves at Sears--and even when you've whittled down the manufacturers, let's say, Whirlpool? Whirlpool makes a gajillion free-standing standard one-oven stoves!

I just wish that there was a store that was just called "Buy This One." Just TELL ME what your best product is!

Right now I'd like to get a dehydrator--and I've given up! Yes, I know Excalibur makes the best dehydrator, but what is the difference between the ED 2900 vs the ED2500? Not to mention the 3900 Deluxe Series? Why should I buy the Deluxe Series? Why are you making all these different kinds of dehydrators? Why can't you just make one and say--"That's it! That's our best one."

This is not like a diner with lots of things on the menu--because each item on the menu is a different food. When you read the descriptions of the Excaliburs--I can't see anything different.

This happened a few weeks ago when I was shopping for a Garmin. Should I get the Nuvi 255W or the 350? The 265W/265 WT? Or how about the 780? The difference in price ranges from $130 to $400.

Huh? Wha? Uhm....

It was too much. I gave up and didn't buy ANY Garmin in protest.

Fuck you Garmin! You and all your choices!! They are totally paralyzing me!!

Monday, January 04, 2010

New Year's Resolutions

Ooops, I forgot to make some New Year's Resolutions...My New Year's Resolution: to get some for 2011.

I can't believe it's 2010!!

For those of us who grew up in the seventies and eighties, 2010 is something we've always thought of as THE FUTURE.

Kind of scary.