Random Stuff from My Life

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Are you ready for some football?

It was a pretty boring Saturday. We had a wedding reception to go to, so we planned our day around that. At first we thought the reception was in the evening, so we were going to drive up the coast and then come back for it. But it turned out to be at 2:00, so we just hung around here in town and ran errands. Got a shelf for the pantry on sale at the hardware store. Got a foam pillow on sale at the mall. Went to the post office. And the cheese factory. And Dollar Tree. And Grocery Outlet.

AND... got to watch some football. I am a huge fan of college football. I am NOT, however, a fan of Notre Dame. I am so mad at Michigan State right now! Some friends called and wanted to go to a movie after the wedding reception, so we got to see ND's go-ahead touchdown at a brew pub while we were waiting for QuinceaƱera to start. (Good movie, BTW.)

Alas, my beloved Wildcats didn't fare any better against a ranked team than the Spartans did. (Of course, they didn't lead the entire freakin' game! Did I mention I'm not a Notre Dame fan?)

It was also interesting to see JoePa running off the field during the Penn State/Ohio State game. I read online afterwards that that's the first time he has left a game during 60 years as a player and coach.

At least Cal won. And Colorado lost. And Arizona played SC pretty tough. (Bear down!)

Next week K-State has pretty much a guaranteed victory (Baylor).

Ahh... fall!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Hints for my husband

I love you, dear, I really do. You are wonderful in so many ways I can scarcely name them. But after 10 years together, you still appear congenitally incapable of distinguishing opportune moments to have a conversation with me from inopportune ones. So, I'm offering you some helpful hints. (You might want to print these out on a handy wallet-sized card and refer to them often.)

Scenario #1: We are in the midst of a six-hour-long road trip. I turn off the radio and ask, "Whatcha doin'?"
Analysis: This is an indication that I am bored out of my skull. This would be a great moment to talk to me about ANYTHING. What so-and-so said at work yesterday, things you read in the paper. ANYTHING.

Scenario #2: We are headed to work in the morning. I suddenly say, "Hi."
Analysis: My brain has finally engaged for the day. This is the very FIRST moment at which I am capable of comprehending thoughts deeper than "Hurry up!" This would be an ideal moment to talk to me about things you need me to REMEMBER. Tell me about your doctor's appointment tomorrow. Mention that you're going to need to spend a bunch of money on something. You have a blank slate here.

You may think from these examples that it's always a good time to talk to me whenever we're in the car together. This is not necessarily the case. Here's another example to illustrate this:

Scenario #3: We are driving. I reach over and turn the radio UP.
Analysis: Most people understand this as a subtle indication that I really like the song that is being played at that moment and want to listen to it. Since you weren't talking previously, DON'T START NOW.

Scenario #4: I am in the bathroom. You hear water running.
Analysis: Unless the thing you need to communicate to me is, "The house is on fire! Grab a towel and let's get out of here," the communication will be both unwelcome and most likely unheard. When you feel that burning need to tell me what you just saw on TV or read in the paper, write it down on a piece of scratch paper and save it until I exit the bathroom.

Thank you, sweetie. I love you.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Fall, even though it's not quite

Ahh, fall... in California, that means the season of street fairs and art/wine festivals. Went to our first one of the season this morning. Actually, we were looking for the farmers' market, but the fair had bumped the farmers onto a side street. We got our $2 head of organic lettuce, and also had bbq from a booth that everyone raves about. It was okay. Not Kansas City barbeque, but not bad. Stopped and said hi to a friend at the midwife booth. Ran into another friend-of-a-friend. Didn't buy any arts and crafts, though (couldn't afford 'em after the food).

Oh, I didn't tell you... went to our first football game the Thursday night before our D.C. trip. The beautiful thing about living on the coast is that it's ALWAYS perfect football weather--nice and crisp in the evening, not too cold. Anyway, the home team won, so that was good.

Did I mention that San Antonio was not perfect football weather? Yeah, I guess I did. But it bears repeating. As my coach (ha, ha; I actually did meet with a professional "coach" while I was at the conference) said, "I'm sweating like two-a-days in football."

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

He's baaack

After 20 hours of driving, flying, and driving, I am home from my conference in San Antonio. Geez, it was hot there! I am so spoiled to northern California...

Had a good time; got to see lots of colleagues. Then, ran into a friend when we stopped at the mall on the way home!

More later...

Tuesday, September 05, 2006


People always think we are crazy to go across the continent and back in three days. But now that I'm starting to mellow (don't know if it's age or too long in northern California) more and more, these trips are less stressful. We've been going to places where we've been before, so we don't feel compelled to see the entire city in 72 hours. And we spend the bulk of our time just shopping or visiting friends.

Such was this weekend's trip to Washington, D.C. We actually took a photograph with the White House and Washington Monument in the background--but only because we were in the neighborhood (we went to church on Lafayette Square). We didn't bother with any museums or monuments, just a mall (not The Mall) and several good restaurants.

First of all, the flights were absolutely perfect. Going east, we were early both on our first leg into St. Louis and on our connection into Dulles. Coming home, we were on time. Considering that we connected through O'Hare (with less than an hour of connecting time) and that Chicago was having storms over the weekend, I thought that was a minor miracle. I've pretty much resigned myself to always being late landing in San Francisco, but not this time.

On Saturday evening, we had dinner at a sports bar in Arlington to catch up on the first weekend of college football, then checked into our hotel and went out to a club. Only one club. Got back to the hotel about 2:00 (11 p.m. Pacific).

Got up at 8:45, went to church (St. John's Episcopal, which has been attended by every U.S. President since Madison). Toured the National Geographic Society offices with our friend who works there. Walked around Dupont Circle and grabbed empanadas for lunch. Went out to the 'burbs, where Stan got some stuff at Macy's and I found two sweaters on the sale rack at Banana Republic. Dinner at a Moroccan restaurant with two former Peace Corps Morocco volunteers. Metro back to the hotel.

On Monday we got up and checked out, then had a nice Ethiopian lunch and headed back to Dulles. There were NO lines at security, and I got a couple hours sleep on the planes. I finished all the magazines I took with me (as well as American's in-flight magazine), but barely cracked one of the two books I took.