The Last One.

When I return, it will be under softer lighting and with a lyricless soundtrack murmuring in the background. Metaphorically, of course.

Until then, this says it better than I ever could.

Sometimes I can think to recite
words that I read and rewrite
My pens paint people that I've proven wrong
We move on.

Get a job where I tell
all of my accounts of someone else
I'm quick enough to judge that they were wrong,
that we knew it all along
Sing a long long-winded song
I would be content to hum along.

If I state that my fingers know where to show
what everyone should have known,
I'll let it go
Hopefully you'll forget any words that I put in print
My luck, you'll change
Have strength enough to walk away.

12-06-2006 3:37 PM - comments (0)

Look, A Post.

Tagged by Chase!

No more posts for a while. I'm visiting Christie in Chicago for a long weekend. Of course, that's not really why there won't be any new posts, but it certainly sounds more exotic than "I've lost my will to write."

I might as well rename this blog Memephilia.

Five items in my freezer (most of which is probably ruined from the storms two weeks ago):
1. Trader Joe's Gnocchi alla Sorentina
2. Cream cheese wontons
3. A package of chicken breasts
4. Healthy Choice pizzas from a year ago
5. Toasted ravioli

Five items in the closet:
1. Laundry basket
2. Way too many clothes, many of which I don't wear anymore, organized by style and color. Because I have neuroses.
3. Suitcases
4. Elliott, who likes sleeping on the suitcases
5. Shoe rack (actually in Michael's closet, along with my dress jackets and winter jackets)

Five items in the car:
1. A garage door opener from my last apartment
2. An AP Stylebook
3. An inflatable bed (I never took it out from visiting a friend in Columbia)
4. The new Tool CD, which I haven't actually listened to yet
5. My claim form from when my car was hit by a tree two weeks ago (I just got the car back today)

Five items in my purse:
1. Makeup bag
2. Cell phone
3. Wallet
4. Business card holder
5. Extra contact lens packet in case one falls out, which it often does

Five people I tag:
1. Clare
2. Amy S.
3. Sara
4. Kristin
5. I don't think I have a fifth friend who would do this. Maybe someone else with writer's block?

08-03-2006 9:45 AM - comments (0)

Falling Down.

Also, I've pretty much lost all interest in this blog, obviously. I'm not sure if it's the result of my busier schedule with wedding planning and freelance work, my notable lack of personal drama or my severe writer's block.

If it keeps up, I'm probably going to shut the whole operation down.

Compounding the problem is that I'm also feeling like the World Wide Web is moving too quickly (or, more likely, I'm moving too slowly). I was slightly ahead of the curve with this blog back in early 2001; five short years later, I'm struggling to understand web terminology, finding it harder to keep up with my favorite sites and generally feeling like a decrepit old person.

07-27-2006 12:38 PM - comments (2)


I'm recommitting myself to my diet. I have 15 pounds to lose, and I'd rather do it sooner than later. I'm actually excited about it all, because I have so much to look forward to as a thinner version of myself: the wedding, a more fashionable fall and winter wardrobe than in years past and the very nice present I'm going to buy myself when I get down to my goal weight: a Pontiac Solstice, which I have lusted after since seeing it on "The Apprentice" a couple of years ago.

I've been working really hard in the last few months on some lucrative freelance work that I very fortuitiously fell into, and while I plan to save a bit of it and set aside some for taxes, I should have enough left over to pay for my half of our fabulous honeymoon and a down payment for the car.

I'm thinking green silver metallic, which reminds me of old British racing cars, or liquid silver metallic, which is just gorgeous. What do you think?

07-27-2006 12:19 PM - comments (1)


"To be lost in the forest
To be cut adrift
You've been trying to reach me
You bought me a book
To be lost in the forest
To be cut adrift
I've been paid
I've been paid

Don't get offended
If I seem absent minded
Just keep telling me facts
And keep making me smile
Don't get offended
If I seem absent minded
I get tongue-tied
Baby, you've got to be more discerning
I've never known what's good for me
I will be yours

I'll pay for you anytime

You told me you wanted to eat up my sadness
Well jump on, enjoy, you can gorge away
You told me you wanted to eat up my sadness
Jump right on
Baby, you've got to be more discerning
I've never known what's good for me
Baby, you've got to be more demanding
I will be yours

What are you holding out for?
What's always in the way?
Why so damn absent-minded?
Why so scared of romance?

This modern love breaks me
This modern love wastes me

Do you wanna come over and kill some time?
Tell me facts, tell me facts, tell me facts
Tell me facts
Throw your arms around me."

07-16-2006 9:44 PM - comments (0)

Wedding Update.

At first, I was tearing through this planning stuff like it was going out of style. I'm in a lull, but don't worry. The pace will be picked up, stat.

Nine months and 27 days until the big day!

What I have/know so far

First dance: "First Day of My Life" Bright Eyes. This was the very first thing we knew, or should I say, Michael knew. It took him almost a year to propose after he told me this song had to be it after we got back from Sarah and Justin's wedding last May; I should have taken that as a sign he actually did want to get married, but I'm nothing if not insecure about stuff like that. (It was also the song he was playing on my iPod at Turtle Playground when he asked me to marry him.)

Ceremony/reception location: The Vault Room at the City Museum in St. Louis

Wedding officiant: Someone from the Ethical Society

Florist/flowers: Rich West Designs; blue-purple hydrangeas, dark pink mini calla lilies, purple heather, pale pink lisianthus or cherry blossoms, magenta dahlias, green cymbidium orchids

Gown: Grace by Maggie Sottero in ivory/gold, purchased from I Do I Do Bridal in Chesterfield. Michael, do not Google this.

Invitations/Save the Dates: My friend and graphic designer extraordinaire Jamie is going to make these for us. We're going to ArtMart this week to find paper stock and decide on colors. I want something very modern but simple -- squares with pencil-drawings of long-stemmed flowers with whimsical petals and a charming serif font. I'm not sure I've ever used words like that before in my life. This is what wedding-planning does, people, and it's not pretty. But it is swoon-worthy.

Caterer: We think we're going with Butler's Pantry's cocktail hors d'ouevres and premium open bar package: manchego cheese with grape clusters and strawberries; market selection of fresh crudites served with a curry dip; trio of brushetta spreads (olive tapenade, tomato feta and crushed white bean) served with grilled ciabatta bread; tandoori chicken brochette accompanied with a sweet chile glaze; skirt steak quesadilla drizzled with a ranch sour cream; gulf crab cakes presented with a creole shrimp sauce; new potato baskets with bacon and chive mousseline; and petite bistro sandwiches (smoked turkey with apple & havarti, maple ham with lorraine swiss, top round with cheddar & caramelized onions)

Yet to be done

We're looking at Cary Klein Photography, Signature Studio and CLC Photography. We're looking for photojournalism style who will make us feel comfortable. I love the candid thing, but I know we'll need some traditional shots, too. I've worked with Pam from Signature before, and she's awesome. She's offering us an a la carte package that will include all-day shooting and a CD of the hi-res images for us to print off. We're not so keen on the huge, expensive albums and would really like to own the images for the future.

Engagement photos:
If we go with Signature Studio or CLC, we'll take our friend Lauren, photographer extraordinaire, up on her offer to shoot these. Cary Klein's packages include engagement photos, though.

Ceremony musicians: There are a few reasonably priced string quartets in St. Louis, so one of those.

DJ: I really like Millenium Music because they will acquire any song you want if they don't already have it. The next best thing to me simply plugging my iPod into some speakers, which I was considering before I realized we really do need someone to point out the important moments, like cutting the cake and all that.

Cake: I've heard Sugaree is the best but somewhat pricy. I also like the Cakery Bakery and Cake Studio. Yeah, because of the name.

Bridesmaids gowns: Not sure yet, but the girls all seem to like Bari Jay's gowns. I've heard there are some great discount retailers on the Internet, so if we can determine the right sizes, colors and styles, I'll just have them order from the websites.

Groom/groomsmen attire: I'm not sure what Michael wants, but I prefer ties to bow ties, and I don't care for vests all that much. I know suits are not considered formal enough for a wedding, but I'm not sure I care that much. I do know my dad is planning on wearing his tux; it might be weird if the guests are dressed more formally than the bridal party.

Shoes, jewelry, lingerie, etc.: No idea.

Transportation for bridal party: This will be DIY, as we're getting married at the same place as the reception. I'm not sure how we'll arrange the out-of-town guests' transportation; perhaps the hotel we book will offer something like a shuttle.

Hair and makeup: Probably The Face and the Body, if only because I go there so much myself and trust the service. My hair is getting so long! I'm thinking having it half up and half down -- my ears need to be covered for sure.

Rehearsal dinner: Whatever Michael's parents decide. They have great taste in food, so it should be great!

Hotel for out-of-town guests: Probably the Renaissance Grand St. Louis, the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at Union Station or the Sheraton City Center St. Louis.

Wedding night: We might go with the Cheshire Lodge, if only because I've been talking and talking and talking about it since we first starting dating five years ago because it has Olde English Charm and fantasy rooms. Really! I love the idea of fantasy rooms, and let's face it, when else would have an excuse to stay in a themed room?

Honeymoon: Probably an all-inclusive, adults-only Funjet trip to Mexico (El Dorado Royale, Secrets Excellence, Royal Hideaway Playacar), Jamaica (not sure), Dominican Republic (Paradisus Punta Cana) or Antigua (Sandals)

06-17-2006 1:32 PM - comments (2)

Up All Night.

I'm all alone, for the first time in a while. It's hard to sleep when you're gone, so I'm keeping myself up all night, watching the same old shows and movies I've seen dozens of times and eating sugary snacks, all to put off crawling into bed.

And in this sweaty, awful weather, where I'm down to my Batman t-shirt and catnap boyshorts, I want it to snow, now, serious piles of it, and where are you? You make me miss winter. How did you manage to do that?

06-17-2006 1:47 AM - comments (0)

"I Don't Care if I Ever Get Back."

There was a cute story about Bernie Williams' 2000th game in the Times today.

I'm a Cardinals fan, but in my heart, I'll always be a Yankee. Some of my best memories take place in Yankee Stadium: My mom sitting in the winning seat that meant an all-expenses paid trip to Walt Disney World and yet another go-around at the Carousel of Progress, my very favorite "ride"; excitedly grabbing the binoculars whenever Don Mattingly was at bat; my dad teasing me about my weird mustachioed crush and then making up for it with a larger-than-life tub of pink cotton candy; leaving a game after a thrilling win and passing by a serene saxophonist playing "New York, New York" and feeling oddly at home; and yes, watching a rookie Bernie Williams some 16 years ago, looking like a little boy with his comical goggles in the awe-inspiring expanse of the outfield, begin what would ultimately become a (quietly) meaningful career.

I love going to Cardinals games and watching the kids with their parents, wondering which moments will defy the odds and become memories that stubbornly cling to the hippocampus. Will it be Albert Pujols firing off a walk-off homer deep into left? Will it be a blistering throw to first by Scott Rolen? Will it be the way David Eckstein throws himself into every play and every at-bat? How about the smell of charbroiled Hardee's burgers wafting through the nosebleed section? The unfailing elegance of the Arch at night? The three uninterrupted hours of jubilation and brotherhood that permeates the sea of red?

I'm just crossing my fingers it's not that sinking moment in the ninth when Isringhausen walks in the winning run.

06-13-2006 3:02 PM - comments (1)

Throwback to the Future.

I'm not sure I've ever heard a song like "Crazy" by Gnarls Barkley. I know I'm late to the game, but wow.

06-04-2006 3:53 PM - comments (0)

And You Are...?

Some of the Googlism entries that cracked me up:

rachel is recommended

rachel is out tonight

rachel is finally back

rachel is my heroine

rachel is a lesbian sex goddess

rachel is born

rachel is just a scatter of mobile homes and there is nothing much to see or do here

rachel is the "twin peaks" of the desert

rachel is at a turning point in discovering

rachel is a 3 year old jennet that was bought as part of our donkey purchase program

rachel is still weeping

rachel is still weeping

rachel is weeping for her children

rachel is coming out of the bathroom after a shower wearing only her bath robe

rachel is at your service

rachel is put into several foster homes

rachel is mean to liberals rachel makes me sad and mad rachel is stupid too much harsh language other

rachel is on the "extraterrestrial highway" and located 40 miles west of the junction of sr 318 and us 93 in western lincoln county

rachel is here to prove it

rachel is more prettier than her rachel looks more natural than that sucks britney britney also always wear a sucks

rachel is a means of receiving the healing grace of god

rachel is put in foster care because her mother tries to "get the devil out of her" and ends up in a mental institution

rachel is pinup

rachel is expected to set an exemplary role for her five siblings and for the community

rachel is handcuffed

rachel is undecided

rachel is always giving 110% in all fundraising efforts

rachel is a great fan of robot wars

rachel is a magic creature

rachel is first ambassador for true taste

rachel is nice rachel is nasty rachel is nice rachel is nasty rachel is nice rachel is nasty rachel is nice rachel is nasty rachel is nice rachel is nasty

rachel is now #2 on the transplant list

rachel is now and then also featured on the frontpage

rachel is worth watching

06-02-2006 4:08 PM - comments (0)

Going Organic.

William Alexander's guest op-ed on trying to grow an organic garden is fascinating (so is this story about Iran's president trying to consolidate power; is it just me, or has the Times gotten sharper in the last few months?), especially when he discusses genetically modified organisms and the environmentalists' mostly* -- it looks like the fear may be justified if resistances develop) oxymoronic/hypocritical fear of them:

"...And if a little pesticide in the backyard is acceptable, tons of pesticides, running into rivers and streams, moving up the food chain, are not. Which brings us to the next quandary. There is, in fact, a technology available today that can drastically reduce if not eliminate the use of pesticides, natural or manufactured: genetically modified organisms.

Such plants are engineered with natural insect resistance and offer substantial reductions in pesticide use without the increased costs associated with conventional organic crops. Monsanto, for example, claims that over the last 10 years, use of its genetically modified seeds has reduced the application of pesticides by 172,000 metric tons. Yet such "Frankenfood" is anathema to the very people who are the strongest proponents of organic food..."

*It looks like the fear may be justified if insects develop resistances to the naturally occuring bacteria that would be present in every GMO

05-28-2006 10:27 AM - comments (0)

Everyone Else Was Doing It.

While watching the AMC "pre-show" for "The Da Vinci Code," Michael and I were subjected to three (THREE!) previews for the new Adam Sandler movie, a film presumably about a guy who ends up in possesion of a magical remote control. (I honestly don't remember what it was called, and I don't want anyone thinking I care to know, hence the not-Googling-it-up-and-typing-the-title-here. I seriously would love to interject a joke here, like, "I liked it better when it was called 'Billy Madison,'" because I absolutely adored "Billy Madison." This, my friends, is no "Billy Madison.")

The one redeeming part of the trailer/most likely the whole movie is the part where Sandler's girlfriend/fiancee/wife asks if he remembers what their song is. He rewinds to their first date and discovers that it's "Linger" by the Cranberries. I'm not sure what it is about the song -- I have a feeling it much to do with the fact that I was 13 when it came out -- but it really does make me feel the best kind of radiant.

It's sad and sweet and utterly innocent, and I sort of miss that about myself. We find old journals and want to burn them when we inevitably get to the pages that remind us of our teenage inadequacies, and maybe I'm being needlessly nostalgic because I've had 1.5 glasses of Wrongo Dongo, courtesy of Dave, but whenever I hear this song, I remember that there was something very honest about being an awkward eighth-grader at a silly little middle school in Spring, Texas. (I guess where you went to school was OK, too. I assume you don't hold it against me that I spent my formative years in Texas, so I should be graceful about this, right?)

Back to the point, sort of. (Writing about music in a non-critical way may be the most futile exercise anyone could hope to attempt, but it's a worthy goal.) "Linger," this most perfect of songs, with its soaring lilts and softly delivered intimations of heartbreak, reminds me of the dreamer I used to be.

Of course, we'll all try to sweep under the rug the part about me spending roughly 80 percent of my time as a "dreamer" thinking about boys in flannel shirts who loved Pearl Jam's "Leash" and
honest-to-God liked "Siamese Dream." Specifically, boys whose names started with "T" and ended with "ravis." (To be fair, he did play a very seductive version of "Hummer" for me a few years later.)

05-23-2006 9:05 PM - comments (3)