Friday, April 30, 2010


I have been friends with Jenny for twenty years. Which is insane to think about. TWENTY YEARS. Because, gah, I can't believe I'm old enough to have known somebody for that long and to remember when I met her. And also, it's pretty awesome that we've stayed friends, close friends, for this long.

We are the coolest people you know.
Oh yeah.
In twenty years, she has seen me at my best and brightest. She has seen me at my worst and most embarrassing. She used to put me in a headlock and yank me around the playground when we were little kids. She can STILL hip carry me like a child. She can follow my insane thought processes. She has seen me make mistakes and not judged me. She can point out my flaws in a way that doesn't make me feel like a bad person. She has written strongly worded letters on my behalf. She deals with my computery problems that I don't understand. She stayed on the phone with me when I had to call 911. I've called her a few, okay, MANY times upset and weepy and she calms me down and then tells me to do something to make myself feel better-- pour yourself a drink, she'll say, here I'm pouring myself one, too.

On weekends when we were in high school sometimes we'd go to the Catalyst or sometimes we'd just end up on the rooftop of the parking garage, taking pictures and screwing around. You know, like everyone did. Right?

What? Oh yes. That's me wearing snow leopard pants with ZERO IRONY. Also, please note that we are both wearing tiaras.

I came to visit her freshman year of college and we were both perfectly content to hang out on the lawn in front of her dorm and make daisy chains.
We always have fun--whether we are out partying or sitting at home hanging out. We drove all the way to LA and back together and did not shut up the ENTIRE time.

It's not her birthday.
It's not any special day.
But any day is a good day to tell someone you love them, right?
Miss Jenny, you are awesome. Thanks for being my friend.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

My Modular Zen Closet

I'm still in the process of organizing my "hidden areas" like my cupboards and storage locker, but Regina Leeds (the author of my MAGIC BOOK, see the Amazon affiliate link over yonder -->) said it was okay to work on your closet now if you hadn't already. That's one of the things I really like about this book-- it pushes you to become more organized and get heavy handed about eliminating clutter, but it also gives you a reasonable time period and lets you bend some of the rules. Like when I started clearing out some cupboards I found TONS AND TONS of photos and, ugh, just the idea of going through them all and trying to organize them and put them in albums was totally overwhelming. Luckily the book had an answer for this too-- don't worry if you find a whole bunch of photos in your cupboards, it said, just put them in one centralized location and we'll deal with them in a later chapter. Whew. I can just focus on organizing the cupboards and closets themselves, not starting a huge photo organization project. Anyhow. THE POINT is I could have organized my closet when I zenned my bedroom but instead I did it now and that's fine! All right. Enough rambling, how about some pictures instead?

Closet, before:
Bookshelf, closet shelf, and cloth hangy thing all BURSTING with clothes.

The modular cubes! And bins! With labels! 
Just... chaos.

More cubes and, of course, MORE BINS!

I took everything out of the closet, put in the modular cube thing and then only re-put back stuff I was SURE I wanted. I meticulously categorized all of my clothes and then hauled all the items that wouldn't fit in the bins to the Goodwill. It was kind of hard being so heavy handed since I'm something of a packrat by nature, but so far I don't miss anything I tossed. And now I can actually SHUT my closet doors. Ta-da!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Bagel Day

Me, yesterday, to anyone: Tomorrow's Bagel Day!

Anyone, to me: Do they give out free bagels?

Me: No...

Anyone: Does somebody bring bagels for your class?

Me: No...

Anyone: Do you bring bagels for everyone?

Me: No...

Anyone: Then what the hell is Bagel Day?

Me: I just... buy myself a bagel at the cafeteria on Wednesdays.

Anyone: Oh.

It's Bagel Day! Yay!

The secret to my success.

Compression stockings.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

If I give you a gift...

If I give you a gift, it is likely that I spent a fair amount of time picking it out. It is likely that I selected something with care that I think you will enjoy. It is likely that I think you will find it useful and/or aesthetically pleasing. It is likely that I spent some amount of money on you. It is likely that I am giving you a gift because I like you.

If I give you a gift, I want you to keep it. I want you to enjoy it. I want you to use it.


If it turns out that the gift isn't quite your style or you already have something similar or you just don't have a use for it, I DO NOT want you to keep it just because I gave it to you. Exchange it, take it to the Goodwill, wrap it up and regift it-- do with it what you please. I don't want you to feel obligated to clutter your space because of me.
But, fair warning, I'm adopting the same policy for gifts I receive.
And I think that's fair.

Can I show you my new earrings?

Here they are:
I found them at some random hip little store in the Haight. I did my level best to talk myself out of them. They're cheesy and plastic and cheapish looking. And kind of odd. And orange. And HUGE.
But I couldn't resist. I paid the five bucks and took them home and put them in my jewelry box. And they stayed there for about a month. Then, a few days ago, I finally wore them. And even though they tend to get caught in my hair and my sweater and feel kind of bulky and weird when they bump against my neck, I'm loving them. I can't explain it. There's just... something about them that's awesome.

Cures for the Crankies

This post has been saved as a draft for DAYS AND DAYS because I kept hoping some stroke of genius would hit me. Sadly, it has not. I have found no magical remedy for when I feel grumpy for no legitimate reason. It worries me, this.

So! Here's what other people suggested. The number one idea was SLEEP. Which, yes. That is true. I usually do fall asleep when I am upset but it is usually because (a) it's bedtime or (b) I've exhausted myself from crying. Or both. I think when I am cranky I somehow become like a small child-- heaving and sobbing instead of just CALMING THE EFF DOWN AND TAKING A NAP. Okay. So I'll work on this. Feel cranky, go to sleep, wake up feeling better. Yes.

Other suggestions included the following:

Maybe I should keep those on a little cheat sheet or write them on my hand or something so that when I am feeling down I REMEMBER that things I enjoy do exist in this bleak desolate world.

Also, I've found that when someone around me is wearing grumpypants I ask them to tell me some of the things that they like. Anything at all, I say, name it! Hiking? Beer? Ponies? Gossip? Shoes? Hot tubs? Road trips? Friends? Music? Cuddling? I'm not sure if it works, but the theory is that thinking of things that make you happy in general might make you feel slightly better at the moment.

So there you have it: when I'm upset I turn into a weepy puddle-person but when YOU'RE upset I'm Fraulein Goddamn Maria.

Monday, April 26, 2010

It pays to be shelvish!

Do you remember when I told you about the shelves in my bedroom? And how much they annoyed me? Because they looked like this?

And not like this?

Well that's pretty much the whole story: the shelves in my bedroom were incredibly irritating because they were apparently built for storing a decorative vase or a... something else that is tall?

And so I whined and carried on about them. A lot.

And then! The other day, my vision was realized.
My very professional handy man making the shelves jut a tad smaller.


And here is what they look like now:
Shelves! SHELVES! I have shelves! It's even better than I had imagined it could be!

My ivorosity.

I was checking out the photos from this weekend and man oh man I am PALE.
This pic is actually cute. But dang. My face. Is WHITE.

I have to remind myself that, actually, this represents a conscious choice. Because I used to like to be tannish. I lounged in the sun. I felt pleased when my skin browned.

Then in college I started wearing sunscreen on my face every day because that LA sun is a scorcher and I could get sunburned just by walking around campus between classes. And then both my dad and sister had to get bits of skin cancer removed from their faces. And I have tattoos and I don't want to end up looking wizened and leathery and I've already had to have numerous moles removed, so I pretty much have no business spending excessive amounts of time in the sun.

I mean, don't get me wrong. I still enjoy hot weather and wearing little summery dresses and skimpy bathing suits. And I definitely still do my fair share of outdoor activities. And I'm always cold and man oh man there is NOTHING like the feeling of the warm sun on your skin. But, sigh, I'm much more careful now. And I accept my paleness.
My deficit of skin pigmentation.
My ghostiness. My wannity. My pallidosity. My achromaticallity. My milkishness.
My alabastarity.


Mine was fun....

Yes, I apparently AM five years old.

Douchey club.

It takes serious talent to DOUBLE drunk dial.


How was yours?

Pics from the bar snatched from Miss Grace. Check 'em all out here.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Girl Talk: Around the World

Oh I'm so glad that this is the GTT topic for today! Because ever since I made my life list I've been wanting to make subsequent lists and categories and plans and so forth involving traveling. I bought new suitcases a few months ago in a gesture of optimism that I might soon go on fantastic adventures.

With that in mind, please bear with this meticulously listy post (which will be formatted similarly to Jenny's since I liked the organization of it).

Places I've been in the US (listed vaguely from West to Eastish):
  • Hawaii- for many a family vacation.
  • California- I live here!
  • Oregon- visiting family.
  • Nevada- visiting family as a kid so I got to hang out in the deserts and Boulder City and the Hoover Dam. I just went to Vegas for the first time as a grownup in December!
  • Arizona- family vacation to the Grand Canyon.
  • Utah- visiting family in Salt Lake City a couple times, and a family vacation to Bryce Canyon and Zion Canyon. My family likes Canyons.
  • Colorado- visiting family and snowboarding.
  • New York- family vacation and visiting friends in Manhattan.
  • Massachusets- visiting family in Boston.
  • Florida- family vacation to Disney World (and a conference).
  • Pennsylvania- visiting friends.
  • Washington DC- touristing.
  • Connecticut- I almost forgot about this one-- I briefly visited New Haven to interview and look at Yale's nursing program.
So that leaves:
  • Alabama
  • Alaska- I bet I could also see the glaciers (number 16) and the aurora borealis (number 24) there.
  • Arkansas
  • Delaware
  • Georgia
  • Idaho
  • Illinois- Why didn't I go to Blogher LAST year? Grrrr.
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • South Dakota
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming
Looks like I've got my work cut out for me. Anybody up for a long road trip (number 80)? Or a specifically targeted mini vacation?

I've also been to the following countries:
  • Mexico
  • France
  • The UK (England, Scotland, Wales)
  • Australia
  • Fiji
Which leaves, you know, the REST OF THE WORLD. But, specifically I'd like to go to:
  • Europe (number 28)- I'd really like to take one of those trips where you travel around on trains and whatnot and stay wherever the wind takes you. I think this might also be an opportune time to see ancient ruins (number 57).
  • Asia- Japan (number 36) and India (number 69) are specifically on my list.
  • Africa- a good place to go on a safari (number 84), see an endangered animal in the wild (number 91), and see the Nile (number 37).
  • Oh, I dunno, New Zealand, Thailand, Hong Kong, Costa Rica, Chile, Indonesia, Brazil, Egypt, Greece, etc etc etc.
  • Any and all tropical islands.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

A Variety of Ladders

I count five. FIVE. And I still don't understand why they needed all of them.

How to h....

The other day I wanted a cobb salad and by some alignment of the stars I actually had lettuce, cheese, croutons, eggs, and avocados. So I went online to look up how to hard boil eggs because I tend to forget the various, tricky, hot-water-cold-water steps. Anyhow, here's what came up on Google when I started typing:
Quite the assortment of How Tos, I think. I wonder if having sex' (with the apostrophe) means different that having sex (with no apostrophe). Is there something extra fancy I don't know about? Also, WANNABE HACKERS: Quit searching for hacking instructions, that's just creepy. Why don't you go out and have some sex'? It will probably make you happier in the long run.

UPR Simply Shabby Chic Cozy Blanket

I think I went to Target and stood in the aisle fondling this blanket probably three separate times before I pulled the trigger and bought it. I was a little hesitant because of the price. After all, fifty bucks is a lot to spend on anything, particularly a blanket you're not quite sure you need. But I justified it thusly: I use my bed every night and I am always cold. I have Raynaud's Syndrome-- I need a warm blankie. It's medical science!

Anyhow, after I bought it I was not disappointed. This blanket is ah-may-ZING. The name doesn't lie, it is cozy. Warm and snuggly and fuzzy and cuddly. And it fits in my washing machine so I don't have to feel guilty about never washing it take it to the cleaner's.
And this cat of mine cannot get enough of it. Even when he's wired and going crazy running around, if I pick him up and put him on the bed he will instantly become calm and start kneading it. Then he'll usually lay down and fall asleep.

So, to sum up: This blanket is a tad on the pricey side but it is very soft and warm and has MAGICAL POWERS OF CAT HYPNOSIS.

How do you sleep at night?

Okay I have several posts that are half-written at this moment but instead I'm choosing to start a new one! So ha.

Everyone has a different nighttime ritual/outfit/blanket arrangement/side of the bed/routine of choice and I feel like when someone tells me theirs I'm always FLOORED. Like, you sleep with your feet outside the blankets? What are you, some kind of animal?

So, here is mine, just in case you're curious about Bedtime Jules.

Unless I have company, I sleep in an old tee shirt and undies. My favorite nightshirts are my dad's old lifeguarding shirts. I've been wearing them since I liberated them from his dresser when I was in middle school. I also have a select FEW other shirts that I choose from. And undies. That's it. Any other bedtime clothing else tends to feel Horribly Uncomfortable. I know a lot of people sleep in, like, pajamas. I have seen them at Target and whatnot. They are cute! Little tankie toppies with matching shorts or pants or whatever. But I never buy them because I can't sleep in a tank top-- it leaves my shoulders bare and prone to perceived wind-chill. And PANTS? OMG just the idea of them bunching and riding up makes me shudder. NO PANTS.

If I am sleeping on my tummy, my face is to the right with my right arm is folded under the pillow and my left arm bent with my wrist resting on my hip. If I'm on my side, some of the blanket is folded between my knees because their bony prominences are, well, BONY. The blankets must cover my feet and come up to my shoulders. If I have to choose one or the other of those two I will choose my feet.

I'm also a mouth-breather, originating from my childhood allergies. If I try to breathe through my nose I feel like I'm going to CHOKE AND DIE. When I see people sleeping in movies or TV I get all anxious because I imagine myself laying there with my head on the middle of the pillow and it reminds me of how much I think I am going to DIE. So my mouth is usually open when I sleep. If you see me sleeping on a plane, I am invariably that person with her head leaning back on the headrest and mouth wide open. It's... hawt.

Anyhow, my bed is lovely and comfortable, especially since I got this blanket. And I have a Bowie who usually sleeps at the foot of my bed. Sometimes I read a chapter of a book or poke around on the computer before I go to sleep, and almost every night I take a Benadryl for allergy/sleep purposes.

Bedtime Jules

So I'm curious, how do you sleep at night?

Monday, April 19, 2010

Bin Obsession

I have apparently lost my mind.
Today, after I finished at clinical, I got in my car and was absolutely GIDDY with the idea of going home. It wasn't just because I like being home, which I do. No, my excitement stemmed from the anticipation of my thrilling afternoon plans. My afternoon plans of PUTTING STUFF IN BINS AND LABELING THEM.

See? I've lost it.

I blame that BOOK. One Year to an Organized Life, I'm telling you it's magic (go ahead and check it out over there on the sidebar --->
but fair warning that's an Amazon Affiliate link).
Anyhow, throughout the book, the author is all jazzed up about drawer organizers and closet organizers and bins and whatever else. And up until now I wasn't sold on stuff like that because I had a perfectly fine organizing method called Throw Stuff in a Cupboard and Pretend it Doesn't Exist. But I said I would zen my whole apartment so I'm ZENNING MY WHOLE APARTMENT, DAMMIT. So I huffed and sighed and dragged myself to Target and bought four little plastic bins. And then I did this:
And there was a moment of "huh." And then it was like a jolt of electricity zapped me because all of a sudden all I wanted to do was PUT THINGS IN BINS AND LABEL THEM.

So, obviously I needed more bins.
Actually, this only represents less than half of what I bought. Some of them didn't make it into the photo because I was SO EXCITED that I couldn't wait ten seconds before I started zenning my closet.
I'm kind of embarrassed about the amount of money and the three trips to Target I took and the sheer number of bins I purchased. But you know what? I DON'T CARE! I HAVE BINS! I'M GOING TO PUT THINGS IN THEM!

Annnd that's what I'll be doing for the rest of the day.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Last night I was wearing some SERIOUS grumpypants.

I was normal all day and then I came home and turned into a Crank Monster.
I think it was some combination of any or all of the following: a few drinks after school with my classmates, not enough to eat, hormones, stress, and general tiredness from the week.

Everything was fine. And then all of a sudden everything was NOT FINE. And I was on edge. Irritable. Sensitive. Weepy.

Things that I wouldn't normally even think about were severely upsetting to me. Things that are Fine and Perfectly Normal suddenly caused a downward spiral into despair, anger, sadness, and regret.

Logically, I could tell that there was nothing really the matter. Logically, I could tell that I wanted to quit grumping and snap out of it.
But the thing about logic? It doesn't make the feelings go away.

The only thing really I know how to do when I feel this way is to give myself a little "time out;" to excuse myself and go cry in the bathroom. But it doesn't really make me feel better and I'm sure it's awkward for other people when I come out all sniffly and red-eyed pathetic looking.

There are many things that do make me feel better when I'm down-- a shower, a yummy treat, a cuddle-- but when I'm wearing crankypants it's harder for me to see them. But I did eventually calm down. I had a nice rest of the evening, went to sleep feeling a little better, and woke up this morning feeling happy, refreshed, and totally back to normal.

I would like to learn how to, like, streamline this process: feel cranky for no real reason, do ________, feel better. So am I the lone crazy Crankmonster here? Or does this happen to anyone else? And what do you do to make it better in the moment?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Trying to keep my elbows down

Daniel said that I looked like a p0rn actress pretending to have an 0rgasm. THAT'S MY CONCENTRATING FACE.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Closet: Before

Oh hello there! Notice anything different? Depending on if you are reading this in a reader perhaps you see a little linkymajig over thattaway ---------->
That's an Amazon affiliate link, just in case you are so inspired by my tales of zen organizing that you're interested in buying the book. Amazon will toss a few pennies my way if you click there to do it. If you would rather buy it from your local bookstore or whatevs then do that but seriously this is a MAGICAL BOOK that has CHANGED MY LIFE. I'm not getting paid to say that. Well, that is, unless you click the link.

Anyhow, if you've been paying attention to my zenning updates you may remember that when I made my bedroom into a sanctuary, I decided not to include my closet. I justified this because the closet is actually located outside the bedroom and because the very idea of starting that project was, like, astoundingly overwhelming.

So I picked up the book and Regina Leeds (the author) had once again READ MY MIND. This month, I am supposed to be working on the "hidden areas" of my home. This is the part that tends to inspire the most confused looks from people-- why on earth would you spend so much time organizing cupboards and closets?, they ask.

Well, according to the book, people tend to accumulate things. And we tend to shove things in unseen, out of the way places when we don't want to deal with them. All of the things that don't quite fit into categories or don't have a specific, consistent use are tossed into cabinets and closets to be forgotten and take up space.

Um. Yah. I'd say I'm guilty of this. Random crap from high school? Got it. Books I never open? Check. Hundreds of miscellaneous items? Yup. But when I was reading this chapter I started feeling doubtful again-- I hadn't yet worked on my closet, so how was I supposed to worry about the hidden areas? And the answer was, yet again, right there in the book. Maybe you haven't done your closet yet, it said. Now might be a good time to flip back to that chapter and work on it for awhile. Uh, first of all, HOW DID YOU KNOW? Second of all, okay!

So with this in mind, here's a look at my closet before pics.
Clothes, clothes everywhere.

Zenning my closet is exhausting because I decided that I would remove everything, sort through it all, and re-put back only the things I was sure I wanted to keep. Bowie has found this extremely exciting and keeps wanting to be ALL UP IN MY BIDNESS.

 I also decided to get rid of my combination bookshelf-plastic drawer-shoerack closet organization system and get something a little more ZEN. I bought two sets of these modular storage cage thingies from Target.
 I had someone else put them together for me because who am I kidding? And then I maneuvered them into the closet.
Next up: re-putting the stuff back in!

Monday, April 12, 2010

UPR Hoover Windtunnel Rewind

I had no idea how much a vacuum could revolutionize my life. Wow. See, when I first moved into this apartment I bought some janky little wee vacuum for under $30. For awhile I thought it was fine because it made noise like a vacuum and I had to empty it of dust and dirt and whatnot. But recently I decided to buy a new one because I had been noticing several things:
  1. I hate sweeping. I HATE YOU, SWEEPING. And your bastard cousin, dusting.
  2. Even after I used my little vacuum there seemed to still be hair and junk on the rug.
  3. I had been using the little vacuum less and less because it doesn't satisfyingly clean up. Which meant I could either have less tidy floors or be forced to SWEEP. So I usually just had grosser floors.
I went to Target yesterday with the knowledge that I was willing to spend somewhere up to around $150 for A BIG SUCKER. So I picked out the Hoover Windtunnel Rewind because it seemed to fit all my requirements and was on sale for $99. And then I brought it home and vacuumed the 3/4 of the rug. And then, uh, had to empty the canister because, ick, it was already at the MAX level. And then I vacuumed the whole rug again and the rest of the apartment.

My only complaint so far is that when you empty the canister of yuck, it doesn't make a satisfying "click!" when you attach it back on to let you know it's in the right spot. I would like to feel CONFIDENT that my vacuum isn't going to start spewing dust everywhere when I turn it on. But. Other than that, I love this vacuum. It is a big, big sucker. It was so satisfying that I meant to just test it out but ended up happily vacuuming my whole apartment. And I don't like to vacuum (or SWEEP. Go to hell, sweeping). So I think that I'm much more likely to actually vacuum now. Plus the floors are appreciably cleaner than they were with my other methods. So. Take that, sweeping.

105. learn to shuffle cards to fancy way

Okay. So. Jenny decided that she wanted to check off Learn How to Play Poker from her life list so she coerced Daniel into inviting us over and teaching us. And I took a look at my own list and realized, hey! I could learn to shuffle cards the fancy way! Except that no one I asked seemed to know how to do that and I felt kind of discouraged. But then I explained to Jenny that nono I didn't mean THIS:
I just meant that I was tired of shuffling cards by cutting the deck and then smooshing all the cards back together. And she was like "Oh so you meant you wanted to learn how to shuffle cards AT ALL."



So! We went over to Daniel's house. First I demonstrated how I typically shuffle.

And then Jenny instructed me.
And I didn't get it right away. And that was frustrating. Or, rather, it would have been frustrating if I Daniel hadn't been so prompt with my drink refills. But I realized that THAT is probably the reason I didn't learn to do this at some earlier time in my life. Because I wasn't good at it right away so I just gave up. Huh. And it dawned on me that that is the case with a number of items on my life list-- learning to do flip turns or sew on a sewing machine or drive stick shift car. I tried it once or twice or seventeen times, I couldn't do it right, and elected to live my life without that skill. But NOW. Now I've made the commitment to learn these things and I am nothing if not stubborn, as demonstrated here.

Emily told me to just keep practicing. So I did. I practiced while we drank our drinkiepies, while we gossiped, while we ate our snackies (including FUDGE made by Emily which, OMG nom nom nom), and while Daniel tried to teach us how to play poker (And, yeah, looking at the videos on Jenny's post, I can see how aggravating it must be to try to teach us. Or even MAINTAIN OUR ATTENTION for more than eleven second intervals).

But I practiced

 and practiced

and practiced

and practiced

and practiced.
In other news, OH HAI I HAVE ELBOWS. I don't know why I had my arms positioned like that. But let me tell you it was the ONLY way I could do it. I tried to keep them at my sides and it felt uncomfortable and unnatural, see?

And then!

I did it!

And we used the deck I had so thoroughly shuffled to play!
And then Jenny took all my imaginary money. And we hung out until the wee hours of the morn and continued imbibing beverages AND played a little game I like to call Truth or Ask Jenny Anything and She'll Tell You. It's really fun! Because you can ASK JENNY ANYTHING AND SHE'LL TELL YOU.
And now! She can play poker and I can shuffle cards the regular fancy way! And Daniel is hereby hired as our own personal Life List Facilitator.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Breakfast of Champions!

Does anybody care what I had for breakfast? Let's find out!

Here it is:
1 slice of apple
1 peep
1 mini paper cup of vegetarian lentil soup
1 raviolo
1 tortellino
1 mini paper cup of berry yogurt
1 mini paper cup of fruit punch

(I went to Costco! There were samples! I was disappointed that I didn't get to sample the pulled pork, egg rolls, or the pizza but maybe that's for the best.)

Friday, April 9, 2010


I just wrote and erased this like four times already which apparently means I'm having trouble putting it into words. But! I'm trying again! Here goes....

Sometimes I do this thing. If someone gives me the sense that they suspect something of me-- that I'm lying or hiding something or not doing what I'm supposed to-- then I tend to get all nervous and flustered. And I'M SURE that this gives off the impression that I AM hiding something or lying through my teeth or that I just snooped through their email inbox.

And then, because I know I look guilty, I start to FEEL guilty, like I feel bad for doing whatever it is I perceive the person thought I was doing. And then I get even more sweaty and discombobulated, all the while trying to make it clear that really! nothing's wrong! I'm totally innocent!!!!!

I think there needs to be a word for this condition. I can't be the only person to whom this happens, does it ever happen to you?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

UPR Google Voice

I started using Google Voice about about two months ago. I got it because I was interested in the text message feature. That is, when somebody leaves me a message, instead of having to call my voicemail I receive a transcription of the voicemail via text message on my phone. I can also listen to the voicemail on my computer. So far it has been really handy-- there are some situations wherein it would be impolite to hold a phone to my ear and there are some instances when I just don't have the TIME to slog through a bunch of messages to get to the one that I've been waiting for. Sure, the transcription doesn't always come out perfect but I don't get a lot of Highly Important messages, so that's rarely a big issue.

Except for when it is. When I'm waiting on crucial information, that's when I need Google Voice to step up its game and MEET MY TRANSCRIBING NEEDS. When I'm sitting in class, nervously yet oh-so-discreetly waiting on a call, THIS is not what I need:

Hey Julia, Bingley Arms embargo 3. Alright so I think I would like to have a good day. I'm going to be there. Anyway, I'm gonna be in 503. I will. Me, Hey Julie, Model, 30, and for aubertie Sylvester I can go by there and see if I can. I couldn't work and yeah i can ask for gonzo. So yeah out for a period Film Fest and when I read 503 and I'll just I'll talk to her and if they're not in session. The hobbled by the out box and work and see if I just forgot to call me and if that's the case, but I'll pick it up and if not then I'll just give them a call tomorrow and see what sort of, so I'll give you an update today when I leave. Or else, and I'll let you know one way or another. Okay thanks bye.


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

UPR Flip & Tumble Produce Bags

And now for something on the lighter side!

What is UPR, you ask? Why that's the official Jules vs. Nuts acronym for an Unsolicited Product Review! Something that I have decided to provide on the occasion that it strikes my fancy! Because the world needs more of my opinions, am I right?

So! I'll be kicking things off with Flip & Tumble Produce bags. Oh, Flip & Tumble. I've dedicated not one but TWO posts to declaring my love for their reusable shopping bags (or "24-7 shopping bag" as they call it) so when I wrote that sad whiny post about not being able to afford Blogher, Miss Grace suggested that I actually approach Flip & Tumble (which I will hereafter be referring to as F&T because yeesh I think I'm going to say their name a lot in this post and I'm tired of typing it out) for some kind of sponsorship.

Well I emailed them and they weren't keen on the idea but instead of saying PAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA HOW DARE YOU EVEN ASK they gave me the equivalent of a placating pat on the head and offered to send me a set of their produce bags.
See there they are, artfully posed with the rest of my mail. I would show you a photo of them in use but, uh, I don't have one. Oh, actually here's one yoinked from the F&T web site.
Handy, aren't they?
Uh, I guess.
Except that I've had them for a month and have yet to use them.

Here's why:
Okay, so I love their regular shopping bags because I can smoosh them into balls and throw them into my purse or car or wherever and then I'll HAVE them on me when I need one. With the produce bags I've been keeping them in a drawer in my kitchen and I tend to forget to bring them when I go to the grocery store and they don't squish nicely into a compact form for me to toss into my purse and forget about. I was thinking that I should suggest that F&T come up with a way to make them more cutely portable but then browsing around their web site I found this.
Oh. So I could just smoosh them both together. Touché F&T.

But my other inherent problem with the produce bags is that I actually do NEED a few plastic bags in my life. I have a cat. And he has a litter box. And I have to scoop it. So I tend to use the few plastic bags I collect here and there for that purpose. So until someone is able to come up with a better solution for me I'm going to grab one or two produce bags from the grocery store.

This means that I would be happy to use these produce bags for some other purpose. Something I love about the F&T shopping bags is that they are so versitile. I use them for groceries, for clothes shopping, for a beach tote, an extra bag whenever I need one. I even wrapped some of my Christmas presents in them!

So I guess what I'm saying is that while I applaud the concept behind the produce bags, they just don't boast the same level of ease and usefulness as their larger shopping bag brothers.

The F&T web site tries to convince you that the produce bags have other uses besides produce-- store your travel toiletries! your shoes! other odds and ends! But I keep coming back to the fact that these are MESH bags. Sooo why would I store my potentially leaky travel toiletries in something that would not contain the mess? I actually bought some little bags that I thought I would use for produce from Daiso at around the same time I bought my first F&T bags.
And I actually have found several many uses for them such as toting my lunches (because they contain them AND they are made of cloth so they absorb any spills pretty well) carrying fragilish things (no mesh areas to get tangled), washing more delicate items, etc.

So Flip & Tumble, you've already done it once-- you convinced me that your shopping bags were far superior to plastic or paper bags and that your cute and versatile shopping bags were the specific reusable shopping bags for me. You're going to need to work a little harder to get me on board with your produce bags.

So, to sum up my ridiculously long-winded unsolicited review of this product in one word: Meh.