Day 20: Something I collect

It’s genetic for me to become a packrat; my father and grandmother are both suffering from “I might need that someday” disease. I suspect it’s terminal. Thankfully, awareness of the condition is the first step toward prevention.

I try to purge semi-regularly (try…wink wink) and maintain some emotional distance from objects as much as possible. Of course, I still have my Care Bear and some other assorted childhood toys, and I get really nostalgic about silly things, like Rainbow Brite cartoons and my Shirt Tales wallpaper. But, I try to resist the urge to collect. Objects are just objects, after all.

That said, I have a ladybug bathroom (I’m considering a ladybug guestroom), and I do love ladybugs, but I don’t claim it as an official collection. Betsy is the only one who gets me ladybug things and I love it. It’s so fun to see the cute things she finds. But, it’s really just a fun thing between the two of us. It’s more special that way. She’s such a good gift-giver. I don’t know anyone more thoughtful.

Until tomorrow…

Day 19: Another dang photo

Awww, puppy love.

Another photo of me? Man, this is too much. Thankfully, Dougal is sharing the spotlight. This was taken on a recent hike in the woods on a rare sunny day this spring. Rumor has it, we may be in for another of those sunny days tomorrow.

In other news, it’s 8:52 p.m. on a Friday and I’m headed to bed. It’s how I stay young and gorgeous. Okay, maybe not young. And, not exactly gorgeous. But, it sounds better than saying my feet hurt and I’m sleepy.

Until tomorrow…

Day 18: Something I crave

The title of this post may be singular, but this is gonna be a list. I can feel it.

Things I crave:

The best thing about the weekends.

• Tapioca. The homemade kind is best (Minute Tapioca). I’ll sometimes settle for the packaged stuff, though buying the Kozy Shack pudding makes me feel like I’m 80. Then again, I buy prunes with reckless abandon.

• Kettle corn. I especially like the fresh kind made at street fairs and markets by the old guys in black vests and bowties. That stuff is heaven. Plus, those old guys are adorable.

• A chair. I stand at work all day. Few things are more satisfying than an opportunity to sit. There’s usually sighing and sometimes a moan when it happens.

• Sleep. I love sleep. It’s the best.

• Foot rubs. My feet usually hurt, so if I can weasel a foot rub out of someone who isn’t me, I’ll do it. Mostly, though, no one wants to do it and they make a show of a few minutes and stop. There’s no passion for the foot rub. I usually just have to roll my big ol’ foot back and forth over one of Dougal’s tennis balls. Not nearly as good.

• Fresh pineapple and strawberries.

• Betsy’s spinach salad. She made it for Easter and I can’t stop thinking about it. It’s so darn good.

This list is making me hungry, but I think I’ll go to bed instead. The food or sleep decision is never an easy one, is it?

Until tomorrow…

Day 17: A harrowing adventure

I didn’t like yesterday’s post, so I’m starting fresh, backtracking a bit, and going in a whole new direction. (The Day 17 post was a photo of me and my family, but I didn’t take well to that one, to be honest. It felt forced.)

But, I had an adventure today.

For the last six weeks, Amy and I have been doing a running program. We’re up to 12 minutes of running and one minute of walking. Today, since Amy had a work obligation, I flew solo and went over to the Orting trail (the site of a previous dog attack, fyi).

When I left work, there was a light mist. By the time I reached the trailhead, the drops were larger, the wind had picked up, and I knew I was in for a bumpy 44 minutes of exercise. Within a half mile, the rain started pouring down. About a mile in, I braved the sideways rain long enough to see a bum camp in the woods a few hundred feet off the trail. Great. A bum camp.

Now, I’m a liberal gal and I know the homeless are often plagued by mental illness and need support and help. I also know that mentally ill people are more apt to hit chubby joggers in the head with rocks and rummage their pockets for cash. So, I was a bit apprehensive. In spite of rain and potentially rock-wielding bums, I forged on.

By the time I hit my second 12-minute running interval, I was absolutely soaked. My pants were falling down because the cuffs were so heavy with rain, the poor elastic was strained. The runoff from my water resistant (notice it’s not water repellent) jacket was streaming down my buttcrack. My shoes were sloshing. I was absolutely miserable. Frozen and miserable. And I still had a few miles to go back to my car.

At about this time, a bicycle came screaming out of the woods, from the direction of the bum camps. A poncho-wearing man with no lower teeth flew past me, yelling, “Nice day to be outside, eh?” Seeing his lower gums flash below the hood of the soaked poncho sent me into hysterics. I was laughing like a nut, amused at the sight of the man riding quickly past me and the ridiculousness of attempting to jog in one of the crappiest afternoons in recent memory.

By the time I made it back to my car, I was exhausted, suffering hypothermia, and desperate for a sunny day. And yet I sit here with ice on my knee and rain still pouring against the windows.

Springtime in Washington, eh? Nice day to be outside!

Day 16: My celebrity crush

In a sea of Jon Hamms, Daniel Craigs, Billy Crudups, and Jake Gyllenhaals, there is an abundance of handsome. It’s everywhere (in the movies, not in real life) and anything that is everywhere ceases to be interesting.

I like interesting.

Jason Schwartman is perfectly imperfect.

That is why my celebrity crush is Jason Schwartzman. He’s not the most handsome fella on the planet. In fact, he’s fairly average looking. But, I love so many of his movies that it’s impossible not to be smitten. He’s smart and charming, creative, funny, and so darn adorable. Rushmore is one of my favorite movies of all time. But, so many of his movies are fantastic.

Shopgirl. I Heart Huckabees. The Darjeeling Limited. So many great movies. Plus, he’s a writer and a composer. He’s dreamy.

If you don’t believe me, watch his movies. You’ll see what I mean.

Until tomorrow…

Day 15: Never leave home without it

I’m one of only about a dozen people in the industrialized world without a cell phone, so that’s the one thing you will not see on this list. No one calls me on my home phone (I got two calls on my birthday. Two. I coped by eating an entire quart of Baskin Robbins Cherries Jubilee, which, thanks to both Baskin and Robbins, is blissfully gluten free.) So, it seems to be a ridiculous waste to carry a phone with me everywhere I go.

What I do carry with me is:

• Wallet

• Camera (usually)

• Ibuprofen (for knee pain emergencies or other disasters)

• Chapstick

That’s about it. When I go on hikes, I also take my green Ducks ball cap, the long leash, and two handsome dogs.

Day 14: The TV show to which I’m currently addicted

Right now, I’m trying to get into The Killing on AMC. Mad Men is on the longest hiatus ever and I needed something smart and ongoing to distract me from the heartbreak that loss has caused. I’m having Don Draper withdrawals and the only cure, I hoped, would be an equally fantastic TV show as a distraction.

So far, The Killing is a slow, no humor ripoff of the best show ever, Twin Peaks. The story is almost identical so far, only without the interesting perspectives, perfectly timed dialogue, and gut wrenching suspense. But, I’m hoping it picks up soon. In the meantime, Billy Campbell is a fine Don Draper substitute. (I know I’m getting old when all the men I find attractive have crow’s feet. So depressing.) Also, it’s nice to see a woman in a lead role that isn’t sexual. Mireille Enos is beautiful, but in a slightly off way, which makes her interesting and compelling to watch. I’ll stick with this show for the whole season, I bet.

Besides the slow pace, my only other genuine complaint is that this series takes place in Seattle and every episode has been so dark, gray, and pouring rain. That’s cliched and not accurate to anyone who actually lives here. That annoys me a little. But, maybe the murder investigation will last into the summer and Seattle will be painted in a better light.

P.S. I was out of town for the weekend, so I’m playing a bit of catchup (not catsup) on the blog. Sorry! I wasn’t near a computer and I was too lazy to migrate towards one.

Day 13: Favorite musician and why

This is an easy one. My favorite musician of all time is Waylon Jennings (with Neil Young and the world’s most glorious muttonchops in a very close second place). Before you laugh, here are my reasons:

• Waylon reminds me of my childhood. My dad is a huge fan and his songs remind me of camping and hunting trips, my dad’s records, and some of the best times being a kid. My dad always sang along, so I knew all the words before I knew I knew all the words. (Does that make sense?) I can’t hear his voice without thinking of my dad.

• He’s country, but cool ’70s country. He was of that generation of anti-sparkle country singers who were gritty and cool. He had long hair and, while he wasn’t exactly handsome, he had a sweet charm and a great smile. He’d done a whole lot of living, and it was visible on his face. I like that. (He was clean cut early in his career, but I prefer the ’70s Waylon with the kooky hat and messy hair.)

• His voice is incredible. There is no other voice like his. He’s the anti-Neil Young in all the best ways. That’s why I love them both.

• I was named after a Waylon Jennings song. It’s in my DNA to love him.

Here are a couple of my all-time favorites:

Day 12: Taking a powder

The prescribed topic for today is the town in which I live, but I’m not feeling much in the mood tonight. It’s late. I’m tired. I just got done paying bills. The last thing I want to think about is the non-town of my current residence. (Location is seriously lacking in my living situation.) I wouldn’t have a nice thing to say right now, so I’m taking a powder on this one.

Until tomorrow…

Day 11: The contents of my makeup bag

Makeup is a tough one. I’m not exactly Picasso here. Actually, I may be the makeup equivalent of Picasso. That’s not necessarily a good thing.

Still, I love makeup. I watch makeup infomercials, beauty products on QVC, online tutorials, everything I can find in hopes of learning the secrets to turning ho-hum to hubba hubba. (Still looking.)

My makeup bag is nothing fancy. I have some staples and a few trusted products, nothing expensive or glamorous. However, I preface this list by saying I could be totally wrong about all of it; I could look really awful and have no perspective on that. If that’s the case, you may want to disregard the list below and shoot me a considerate email. May I suggest something like, “Listen up, lady, you look bad. Real bad. Here’s a gift subscription to Glamour magazine. In the meantime, consider working from home.”

My makeup bag…

•  Foundation, usually the palest, pastiest color they have

•  Brown mascara

•  Two eyeliners, navy and plum

•  Benetint cheek stain (it’s a bright cherry-red without a hint of brown or orange, perfect for the ruddy and pasty)

•  Benefit’s Highbrow eyebrow-defining pencil

•  Eyebrow pencil (I have more hairs on my chin than my eyebrows anymore; I have to draw them in daily)

•  One eyeshadow quad (Neutrogena’s seashell collection of taupe-y neutrals)

•  Green concealer stick (for taking the red out of my chin and nose corners)

Nothing earth-shattering. Just the basics. Enough to get me through the day without scaring small children. I hope.

Until tomorrow…