Friday, June 29, 2007

A Lovely Time Was Had By All

After work yesterday, I went home, fed the psychokitty, packed an overnight bag, and headed to Y's. We had a good talk about the speed our relationship seems to be developing. Fortunately, we both are comfortable with it. So far.

He made dinner - taboule, cheese and, then, pasta.

We watched Casanova on DVD.

We had fun. And lots of it.

I am tired.
I am not going out tonight, because I need to catch up on my sleep.
Martini. Movie. Knitting.

Tomorrow, a few of the kittens are driving up to Baltimore for Saturday Afternoon Margaritas: Baltimore Edition II! *woot*

No plans for Sunday yet. Depending on our state of intoxication, we may all be spending the night in Baltimore.

I'm looking forward to a mildly relaxing weekend. Yay.

Oh, and

*Happy Birthday Smooches to GayProf*

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Do Not Panic

VUBOQ is only working a half-day tomorrow.
He will not be updating this blog until the afternoon.
Try to remain calm.

Knitting Right Along

Last night was uneventful. I did two loads of laundry. I watched movies. And, I knitted (Therefore, I am'ed).

The Oscar Project is coming along well:

Blanket2


Except, I'm not sure if I have enough scrap yarn to finish it. That would be a problem.

Meanwhile ... *singing*

Meet me in Las Vegas, VEGAS!
Meet me at the ...

SPICE GIRLS WORLD TOUR!!! (December 8th. Mark yer calendars!)

*shriek*

Lessee ... Y was supposed to come over last night, but he fell asleep. Behold the ravages of jetlag! I'm headed over to his place after work. I don't have to be at work tomorrow until 12:30, so we can have a relaxing morning in! Yay. (*rowr*)

Gah!

Inadvertently assigned all the difficult email inquiries to myself.
Will be back with more substantial update later today.
Stay tuned.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Stop Looking at My Groceries

"Ooooh ... you're buying healthy food," said the crazy lady behind me in the express line at Whole Paycheck as she eyed my whole wheat bread, soy milk, hummus, nachos [organic!], and garlic-stuffed olives.
"Um. Yeah," I replied.
"You're too thin," she said.
"Uh."
"I'd feed you some mashed potatoes and gravy and big thick steaks ..." her voice trailed off.
"Um."
"You can keep those olives though. Too salty for me."
"Thanks. Bye."

The Oscar Project

For my birthday this year, SuperKnitter Chelsea sent me a book, Knitting for Peace. It is filled with wonderful charity knitting ideas - hats for preemies, sweaters for orphans, etc. etc. etc. As I sat on my sofa, surrounded by piles of leftover yarn from knitting 5 Harry Potter scarves, I came across the perfect project.

Not only did it use the exact same yarn I used for my Harry Potter scarves (Plymouth Encore Worsted), but it could also be knit in memory of someone who played an important, but brief, role in my life, Oscar, the DemonDog Puppy from Hell.

Using a simple garter stitch and lots and lots of leftover yarn, I could make a blanket for a cute (or not-so-cute) puppy or kitty at the animal shelter where John and I picked out Oscar.

As this idea bounced around in my head, I realized that maybe lots of people have lots of leftover yarn from knitting Harry Potter scarves. Maybe they could use that yarn to make blankets too! Or they could pool their leftover yarn and one lucky knitter could make a blanket!

And, thus, the Oscar Project was born. Now, I need to figure how to get the word out.

Blanket


In other news, I did nothing last night but eat, knit, and watch movies. I went to bed early. It was lovely. Tonight is laundry night. *woot*

I live teh exciting life!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

First Things First

Some of you may remember me blogging about the SuperSecret Long-Awaited Knitting Project. Well, it has been received and a photo has been posted. Check it out!

Ms. Martini was runner-up in a little haiku contest I ran a while back (like maybe a year and a half ago?), so I promised I would knit her a scarf. We decided on a Harry Potter scarf. The only problem with that, which I failed to see at the time, is that the main color in the HP scarf was very similar to the color of the Never-Ending Sweater of Doom. So, I put the scarf aside until I finished the sweater. At least both projects are finished now, and I am, now, trying to figure out how to organize my Charity Knitting Project Idea. I will think on it tonight.

And, now, I guess you are eagerly awaiting my report from last night?

Well ... my Meat-Free Monday meal was delicious!

I made a caprese salad [tomato slices, topped with basil and mozzarella, and an olive oil and balsamic dressing] for the first course. Then, we had pasta tossed with homemade pesto. Many thanks to Shigeki-kun, who, using his wine expertise, suggested the perfect accompanyment, Piper Sonoma non-vintage Brut [of his many suggestions, it's the ONE that my local likker store had. And it was *YUM*].

**We interrupt this post for a Very Special Announcement. My boss just phoned with my "merit increase" - 4.3%!!! Suh-WEET!!!!

I wonder how much per paycheck that will amount to? I guess I can multiply my current pay by 4.3% to get a rough estimate?**

OK ... where was I?

Oh, last night, right ... It was very good seeing Y again. And, I must say missing sewing class (and, now, not taking sewing class) was well worth it. *rowr*

Lots of sex was had last night ... and this morning.

*contented sigh*

Updated to Note: Totally smokin' outfit today, Tomokito. Loved the shoes!

Monday, June 25, 2007

In Money Matters, Money Matters.

Something has gone horribly awry with my budget. I don't have a copy of my budget here at work, and not being able to work on it to figure out why my budget and my bank account are not in positive alignment is totally stressing me out. *deep breaths*

I currently don't have enough cash in my checking account to cover my monthly bills. This is usually not the case. I will have to transfer money from my savings, but I want to know why this happened.

I'm thinking the problem is either a) rather than charge it! I used more cash than usual or b) somewhere there is a spreadsheet error in one of my budget columns.

It's a good thing my sewing class check got lost in the mail, because in a few days, it is going to magically transform into rubber. Alchemy is COOL. I will not be taking the sewing class this summer.

The financial hatches are about to be battoned.

Weekend Update: Anticipation Edition

What a weekend, kittens.

Friday night, I had a relaxing night in filled with knitting, martinis, and Hedwig and the Angry Inch, which I would like to say is *much* better than the director's other film (my impressions of that movie are here).

Saturday, I did some grocery shopping. Blobbed around. Weeded some of the front garden (with help from a professional super-weeder, DUN). Then, headed off to Dana's (not-quite-a) Suprise Birthday Party held waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay out in the hinterlands of Maryland. I saw COWS! and DEER! and TRACTOR CROSSING SIGNS! GOOD LORD, DANA, WHERE THE FUCK DO YOU LIVE? The party was fun. Alyssa (who drove) and I helped ourselves to much beer and food and chocolate fountain goodness. Then, Dana dumped a beer all over Alyssa (It was an accident *wink wink*) and we left.

Sunday, I did some cleaning. Then, Tomoko and I went to the E Street Theater to see Paprika, which was AMAZING. I tell you, American animators should be working on exciting, innovative movies like this, rather than the kid-pleasing, formulaic crap they are currently churning out (Shrek III, I'm looking at you). After the movie, we met Mike at Austin Grill for food and margs. On the way home, I stopped off at Whole Foods to pick up a few things.

Once home, I blobbed around quite a bit more. I took a nap. I made pesto. I came up with an idea for a fairly interesting charity knitting project. Stay tuned for details. Once I get them all sorted.

A good weekend, filled with lots of fun and friends and food. But, mostly, I waited. For today. Funny thing when Monday is the most eagerly anticipated day of the weekend, huh?

I had an email from Y this morning. He arrived around 1:20 and will be in touch after he wakes up. I think today will be a long day.

*smooches*

Friday, June 22, 2007

Martini Hour

Alternative Title: Why a "Middle Class" Salary in the DC/Metro Area Totally Sux Ass (and not in the *fun* way)

I met Mike for a lovely lunch at a Thai restaurant near the Tenleytown Metro Station. It's not the best Thai food in town (by far), but the company and the cool breezes more than made up for that.

Then, I spent a few fruitless hours shopping in Friendship Heights. After my supercute new Converse shoes began to hurt (even more), I called it a day and returned home for a well-deserved MARTINI and some chips and salsa. Mmm.

I've been cruising the Internest, reading movie reviews. Practically every movie I want to see now is showing at the SAME theater: E Street Cinema.

If only I could afford the $9.50 per show ticket price to see them all! Tomokito and I are going to see Paprika, a Japanese anime, on Sunday. I also want to see, Waitress and Once and Paris Je T'aime and ShowBusiness and ... and ... and ...

I suppose I need to update my NetFlix queue and wait wait wait for DVD releases ... *sigh*

The Lady or the Tiger?

Or, in my case, teh sex or teh sewing?

Mike reminded me that the sewing class I'm interested in taking begins on June 25th (6:45PM-8:45PM), which -as we all know- just so happens to be the day of my happy happy sex-filled reunion with Y. AUGH! What to do?

I need to call the registrar, because -apparently- my registration check and application never arrived. So, this whole dilemma may not come about if I can't get into the class ... even though I mailed the check last month. What up with that, DC and MD postal carriers?

Y was very sweet and offered to reschedule or come over after the class. I was like, um, no. So, I'm hoping that -if I can get into the class now- missing the first lesson will not be detrimental to my sewing career.

Priorities, kittens. It's all about priorities.

Half-Day Friday!

*woot*

I am outta here at 12:30 today! YAY for Summer Hours! Plans include meeting Mike for lunch near AU, doing a little shopping, then heading home for an easy night in. Aah.

Last night was fun. Met Jerry at the National Press Club for drinks and dinner. Then, we went to see a special screening of A Mighty Heart, which was awesome. Angelina Jolie was amazing. Let it be known, that, when Hollywood decides to turn my life into a big cinematic experience (well, bigger than it already is), I want to be played by Angelina Jolie!

Other than that, not much else is going on. I'm watching the hours slowly tick by until Monday. I told Y I would cook dinner, and this is what I'm planning:

caprese salad (tomato, mozzarella, and basil)
pasta tossed with homemade pesto
garlic bread

My biggest decision, now, is what wine goes well with that? I'm thinking either a light red or white (like pinot grigio?)? Any suggestions?

Have a great weekend, kittens!
*smooches*

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Yarn Chix Terrorize New York City!!


"We're just here for Pride," one Chick was overheard saying.

Visions and Revisions

I've been sitting here thinking about parts of one of the stories I wrote last night. I'm going to have to delete about two pages of text. It was so cliche. Yuck. I do remember liking about two sentences though. I'll keep those.

I also really liked a scene (even though it needs work) that I added to another story. I have a tendency to write things that veer off into sappiness. What I added was an important course correction. Hopefully.

Not that this makes any sense to anyone other than me. Sorry.

And, Y just called me "pumpkin" in an IM. *giggle*

This looks like an interesting job. Too bad the pay is crapola.

Boy in the City

*oog*
One of us is a leeeeeeeeeeeeeetle over hung this morning.

I left work at 3:30 yesterday, went home, weeded a bit in the garden, typed a bit on two different stories, made a martini, and did lots of blobbing around.

I also did laundry.
Reheated my leftovers from Meat-Free Monday's dinner.
And cracked open a bottle of white wine.

3 hours, 2 movies, 1 long telephone call, and an IM conversation later, the bottle was empty and I went to bed.

Mmm. Bed. Bed good.

Of course, because I had washed the sheets, I had to make the bed first. Not fun. I hate making the bed. Making the bed while slightly intoximacated is even less fun and more hated.

Today after work, I'm meeting my friend Jerry at the National Press Club for drinks and snacks. Then, we are going to a press screening of A Mighty Heart.

Oh. And Happy Summer Solstice! Everyone go out and drink a margarita in the sunshine today!

*smooches*

PS. Y told me yesterday that he's coming back to DC on Monday! His original plan was to fly back to NYC on Sunday, then visit friends for a few days. Now, he's driving back on Monday. EXCITEMENT!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

I Was Planning on Being Anti-Social This Weekend

Yet, the gauntlet has been thrown.

Right earring (only) hunting. What fun. Anyone care to join in the festivities?

I Hear Dead People

Sometimes, in bed, with the fans running, muffling the outside noises, in the darkness of my room, as I teeter on the edge between sleep and wake, I hear conversations. Just snippets really. Voices in the dark.

And, unlike when I feel there is someone in the room with me, it isn't creepy and disturbing. In fact, it's almost comforting. The voices are soothing, like late-night lovers talking to each other in drippy sleep-filled murmurs.

Someone, I don't remember who, once said, "Vuboq, the only person interested in your dreams is you." Ever since then, I've tried to keep my dreamstories to a minimum ... except when they are frequent and recurring.

Because that usually means something is pricking at my subconscious, and typing it out helps me sort things through. For the past few days, my dreams have dealt with something I've been thinking about quite a lot recently: coming out to my parents.

I should have done it a long time ago. It's something I should do today ... or tomorrow ... or next week ... or never. The time never seems right. And my courage never seems strong.

I'm not really sure what I'm afraid of - losing their love? Seeing their disappointment? Having to answer all "the questions?"

As Billy (I think, or was it Diablo?) wrote one time "A life lived in fear is a life half lived" (or something like that).

On a completely different note, I've spent the morning trying to imagine what Death would feel like (no, I'm not suicidal). I mean, what it would feel like in a "literary" sense. If one were to write about Death, how should he describe it?

At first, I was thinking of something like "the icy hand of Death." Death has always seemed cold. But, the more I think about it now, I feel like Death should be hot. Like it should burn. Or be a hot, dry desert wind. Or maybe the steamy muggy humidity of an Eastern NC swamp.

And, if you can't tell, I have a story idea bouncing around in my head. Too many ideas, too small a brain.

*smooches*

Place Holder

Nothing of interest to note:

I have been feeling very unmotivated lately.

Mike is dogsitting this week, so I went over there last night for dinner and a movie. We watched Xanadu. *heh* Cheesetasticness!

My chili pepper plants and tomato plant haven't died yet.

I saw a bird's nest in a very interesting place yesterday. I took a photo this morning and will try to take some more this afternoon to post later.

Tonight is laundry night.

The month is not even close to being over and I am rapidly approaching dire budgetary straits. And I am almost out of booze.

I am missing Y. Or at least I am missing the sex with Y.

*sigh*

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Temporarily Possessed By Crankiness

I am not a National Spelling Bee Champion; however, I do understand the basic rules of spelling. It would seem a lot of people do not.

And that irks the living crap out of me.

I know that some words are very difficult to spell. For the life of me, I can never remember how to spell occasionally. I have to look it up every time I use it [and, yes, I just looked it up].

Fortunately, Blogger has spellcheck. Google suggests corrections to misspelled words. Merriam-Webster has their dictionary on-line.

They are all QUICK. AND. EASY. TO. USE!

It offends my sensibilities to see things like this (all taken from a post I read about 10 minutes ago):

"...writting..."
"...to bad your a lazy..."
"...doens't..."

*shudder*

I'm tempted to buy a dictionary and mail it to that person.
Too bad I'm broke.

Cooking with Squash

It was a gabillion degrees outside yesterday, so I -naturally- decided to cook something that required lots of boiling, stirring, and optimal use of the gas burners. I. am. clever.

I picked up a yellow squash, some spinach, and a lime (for the Dark&Stormy) at Whole Paycheck on the way home.

Then, the cooking:

Step one: Make Dark&Stormy.

Step two: Boil water. Add 1/2 cup of orzo. Cook 11ish minutes.

Step three: Repeat Step one.

Step four: Heat frying pan. Add olive oil. Toss in a couple smashed garlic cloves and a sprig of rosemary (from the bush in the front yard). Toss in thinly sliced red onion. Thinly sliced yellow squash. Once sort of soft and browned, add some leeeeeeeeeeetle tomatoes and spinach.

Step five: Repeat Step one and three.

Step six: Drain cooked orzo. Mix in some crumbled feta and toasted pine nuts.

Step seven: Arrange orzo and squash mixture lovingly on cute plate, like so:

Dinner

Step eight: Repeat steps one, three, and five.

Step nine: Eat, Drink, Be Mary.

Hope everyone had a fun Meat-Free Meal on Monday!

In other news, tonight, I am having dinner and movies with Mike (not the Convertible One). He is dog-sitting for Bob and Bernard, and they have a fantastic house with a HUGE television. And lots and lots of booze. *woot*

And a fully functioning air conditioner. My a/c is fine, but towards the end of the Summer it tends to grow weary of actually making the air "cool" and settles for "lukewarm." Perhaps, I should start a "Buy VUBOQ a New A/C" fund.

Speaking of funds, does anyone know anything about Stock Index Funds? And, I mean, not what they are (I know that), but how one goes about starting one. I have a pretty neato idea. Of course, since we are in the Age of PoMo, someone else has probably already thought of and patented it (or whatever).

Monday, June 18, 2007

In the Men's Room

Scene: Men's restroom at Merriweather Pavillion.
Time: During Rufus Wainwright's Never-Ending Set of Either One Really Long Song or 5 Songs That All Sounded Exactly Alike

The restroom was very crowded.

Suddenly, someone tapped VUBOQ on the shoulder and said, "We should really stop meeting like this."

VUBOQ was momentarily confused. He is not used to people speaking at him whilst he is in the act of urination. VUBOQ was flustered. Then, VUBOQ recognized the voice.

It was Convertible Mike, one of the many Mikes in the long, long line of Mikes Who Have Broken VUBOQ's Heart.

Convertible Mike said, "Because people will think I am stalking you."
VUBOQ replied, "I can think of worse people for you to stalk."

Random man at adjacent urinal laughed.
VUBOQ flushed.

[and then washed his hands, unlike many of the other men who were using the facilities]

Weekend Update: Bitch Got Some Pipes Edition

Last night, thanks to a generous friend of Robert, we were able to go to the True Colors Tour! And, man, was it awesome or what? So much fun. Seems like every fag in the metro area was there. I ran into Convertible Mike in the restroom. And Robert pointed out a member of the gay bloggerati. [Which raises an interesting question: What's the etiquette when you spot someone who you've never met, but you read their blog regularly? Is it OK to go and introduce yourself? Or is it best to admire from a safe and respectful distance?]

Anyway, Margaret Cho hosted, and she was on point! Very funny. And, I say this from the point of view of having recently watched her DVD, Cho Revolution, and not being impressed. at all.

The Opening Act was The Gossip. And, like, wow. True color me impressed. I want to run out and buy all their CDs and be a giggling screaming little school girl at all their concerts ... except, for some reason, I think a giggling screaming little school girl might get trampled in the mosh pit.

Then came the Dresden Dolls. They were kind of *meh*.

Next up was Rufus Wainwright. And, please don't hate me, Rufus fans, but I don't get all the (ru)fuss. All his songs sound exactly the same. By the third song I was ready to poke my ear drums out with an ice pick. Oog.

Then, there was Debbie Harry ... and then, Erasure ... and then, Rosie O'Donnell (Can we say, "Hello, I'm bitter?") ... and finally, Cyndi fucking Lauper! She's, like, a hundred years old and *still* running around the stage and belting out the songs! *woot*

Fun times, kittens. Fun times indeed.

As for the rest of the weekend ... Friday night Happy Hour was fun with Robert, Tomoko, and Mike. Mike left to meet Peter. R, T and I went to Alero for margs and cheese.

Saturday. Very hungover. I didn't do much of anything. I made a pasta salad. And, around 6, went to the park for DUN's bbq ... which was a lot of fun. Good turn out. Good conversation. Good food. Found out that Y and I have a few more friends in common ... small world, yo. Drank loads, but surprisingly ...

Sunday. Not hungover. *woot*

Went rollerblading. Did about 2.5 miles. In the afternoon, I went up to Tomoko's for a Tom Collins and some Sex and the City episodes. Then, the concert.

I'm a little stiff this morning. And tired. *whew*

Don't forget today is Meat-Free Monday! Do your part for the environment by enjoying a delicious meat-free meal today! *smooches*

Friday, June 15, 2007

Weekend. Full Steam Ahead

This is the post in which I tell you all about my wonderful weekend plans and you all seethe with jealousy. Ready. Set. SEETHE!

Friday night: Happy Hour at Halo with the Kittens! *woot* Tom Collins!
Saturday: BBQ in the Park with Diagonally Upstairs Neighbor and friends!
Sunday: [Are you ready for this?] True Colors Tour 2007! Debbie Harry! Erasure! Cyndi Fucking Lauper! [Yeah, so it's a fundraiser for HRC, wtf-evah. Our tix were free!] Suh-WEET!

There Be Chili Pepper Plants Here, Captain!

There be no picture here, though, because my crappy rechargeable batteries can't hold a charge for more than 12 hours apparently. GAH.

But, now, I have 12 little baby chili pepper plants all in cute little rows in front of my building. Don't step on them!!! Please ...

Hopefully they all won't die a horrible death. I kept three in a pot indoors, just in case. If they do all survive (and produce), I will have enough Thai Dragon Chili Peppers for a lifetime! Enough to share with my neighbors and, maybe, some lucky chili pepper loving blogfriends! *woot*

In other news, the SuperSecret Long Overdue Knitting Project is FINISHED! I hope to be mailing it to a lucky (and, recently, infrequent) reader of mine! After it is received I will post some photos (assuming that I remember to charge my crappy rechargeable batteries before I mail the package).

And, at 5PM today, International Liver Resting Week 2007 will be OVER! *woo hoo*

I plan to partake of the Official Intoxicating Beverage of Summer 2007 (as determined by Yours Truly and Robert), the Tom Collins (or Vodka Collins for you pussies kittens who don't drink gin).

Last night, it was difficult to resist the Dark&Stormy Siren Song. Luckily, I managed to stifle it by eating half a pint of Haagen-Daz Cinnamon Dulce de Leche (a new flavor! the cinnamon was a bit over-powering, methinks, but still yummy).

I've been on a cinnamon kick the past few days. Not sure why. I added some to my coffee yesterday prior to brewing and it was delicious.

I guess that's about it. More later. *smooches*

Thursday, June 14, 2007

You Can't Win If You Don't Play

I actually have a bit of internet access this evening, so here's what was in the Super-Secret Prize Package from GayProf:



And, here's a photo of me this morning:



Donchawish you had played now, kittens?

Give 'Til It Hurts

One thing I hate about attending the Capitol Pride Street Festival is running the HRC gauntlet. Every five steps one is accosted by a perky little volunteer saying, "Hi, do you have a few moments to talk about HRC?"

Erm. No. And I also don't have a few dollars to give to HRC either. Their cute little faces get these sad little crushed expressions, and it makes me feel a teeny-tiny twinge of guilt.

I don't really like explaining that 1) I don't give to political organizations, 2) HRC's administrative and fundraising (AFR) expenses seem a little high, and 3) HRC hasn't impressed me with their overall effectiveness.

According to Charity Navigator (which is a very cool site, until it stopped working for me), HRC's AFR is 35.4%. The Combined Federal Campaign website states that "an AFR in excess of 35% is considered high by many in the philanthropic community."

I prefer to give my money to smaller, more locally-focused organizations. I have donated this year to the Washington Animal Rescue League (AFR = 24.5%) and Food and Friends (AFR = 22.7%). I also usually donate to the Whitman-Walker Clinic; however, their AFR of 40.5% is making me think more seriously about that. Still, WWC does good work so I will probably continue to donate to them.

I also donate money to any friend of mine who asks me to contribute to their fundraising efforts. After raising nearly $2000 in 2001 for the AIDS Marathon Training Program, I feel individual fundraiser's pain. It's hard work, and I'm sure Junior Achievement, Boys and Girls Club of Metro Atlanta, and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society have all benefited from my friends' efforts.

[Big finish. Excellent concluding remarks. Summarizes beautifully.]

*smooches*

A Hard Rain is Gonna Fall

When I got home from work yesterday, I was met at my door by a HUGE PACKAGE! I was so excited. I rushed in and ripped it open! And, because I know you all are pervy monkeys, I took pictures.

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to get a good internet connection to get them off my laptop. But, as a tease, let's just say that *I* have slept with GayProf! Be jealous, kittens.

In other news, rain, and lots of it, prevented me from transplating my baby chili pepper plants last night. Hopefully, I will be able to do so this evening. The rain also made getting to and from the laundry room quite an adventure.

More later. *smooches*

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Cubicle with a View

I've spent the last 30 minutes or so watching the antics of 6 teens on the roof of the parking garage across from my office.

Two of them have spent a significant amount of the time in the opened trunk of their car with their legs dangling out. Making out, one would assume. Another couple walks around randomly making out in the parking lot. And the other two kids (also a couple?) just wander back and forth talking on their phones.

I wish I had a camera with me. Kids are weird.

Tarting Up the News

Perhaps this is what Dan Rather meant:



Twitterpated and the Evil Temptress Upstairs

Yesterday, Mush made me sign up for this thing called Twitter. Here be my page. Now you can all sign up to be my friends! Yay!

When I got home from work, I started weeding the little overgrown garden plot in front of my building, but it started raining. Bah. It was a quick thunderstorm, so, about an hour later, I returned to do more weeding. Then, I planted 4 cute little chili pepper seedlings into a long trough-like planter, using some of our co-op's homemade compost and the last of my potting soil. Hopefully, they will not die. Today, after work, between laundry runs, I plan to finish weeding and plant the remaining chili peppers in the garden. I will take photos. Maybe.

**We interrupt this very important blog post to note that vuboq hates weaving in ends on the long-awaited super-secret knitting project. Thank you**

Later, DUN tried to tempt me with alcoholic beverages. And, then, she called to ask for advice on how to make a mixed drink! I resisted the siren song of the Evil Temptress. Yay me! International Liver Resting Week 2007, Day 2, completed successfully!

I also watched Word Play, which is a neat documentary about crossword puzzles. I know, it sounds kind of dull ... but it was fascinating. There's just something about smart, intense people who get all wrapped up in their interests. They seemed a bit more normal than the people who are addicted to Scrabble though.

I love me some Scrabble.

I guess that's about it. More later, fer shur.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Being Gay. It's Da Bomb

In light of this recent news, VUBOQ submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the Air Force and received the document below. You all may thank me later for helping expose this horrible, horrible scandal.





Meat-Free Monday: OMG I Need a Drink Edition

International Liver Resting Week 2007, Day 1.

I got home from work around 5:30. "I could really use a martini," I thought, opening up the freezer to pull out a chilled martini glass. "Oh, wait, it's International Liver Resting Week 2007, Day 1. Damn."

Mmm. Ginger ale.

I decided to finish the Long-Awaited Super-Secret Knitting Project. I only had 6 rows to go and to teach myself how to do a three-needle bind-off. In the middle of the three-needle binding off, my parents called.

"Now, I really need a drink," I thought, heading to the freezer to admire the chilled bottles (yes, bottles) of gin. Alas, once again, I remembered that it was International Liver Resting Week 2007, Day 1.

Phone call finished. I resumed the binding off, only to learn that the three-needle binding off technique does not work all that well on circular needles. Perhaps, the instructions should include a note: If you are using circular needles, it would behoove you to transfer the work to two double-pointed needles. Please keep that in mind if you ever try to use the three-needle bind-off, because I didn't. And it made me want a drink.

Of ginger ale. (*gah*)

After knitting, I decided to cook my Meat-Free Monday Meal. And, you know what goes really well with cooking for Meat-Free Monday?

A MARTINI!

But, it's International Liver Resting Week 2007. So, instead, I had water. Water. *ugh*

For Meat-Free Monday, I made an orzo pasta salad with lime-basil dressing.

I boiled a cup of orzo and tossed it with grape tomatoes, black olives, cucumber and grated fulvi romano. The dressing was lime juice, olive oil, basil, salt and pepper.

Served on a bed of baby spinach.

I forgot to take a photo. Which might be a good thing, the photos are never as interesting as when they don't include a half-drunk martini [and an all-drunk VUBOQ].

Then, I watched X-Men 3 ... which was really good.

The End. *smooch*

Monday, June 11, 2007

Weekend Update: Rude and Unfriendly Edition

Interesting weekend this Pride was. Overall, it was just like last year ... without the heartbreak or the hot sex. I guess no Pride is perfect.

The weird thing about Pride is it's fun to get out and see friends, some of whom I haven't seen in years, and to meet some new people, and to drink loads and laugh, but the background scenery never changes: Same floats. Same people. Same booths. Same crowds. I dunno ... I look forward to Pride, but then while it's happening it seems sort of blah.

Here's the run-down:

Friday, Robert, Tomoko and I went to Halo for happy hour. Then, Mike joined us at Alero for margs and mexican food. After two pitchers and dinner, we ended up at Omega. Mike and I got into this conversation in the porn room, in which we reminisced about what we were doing last year (having lots of sex). I mentioned that I'm glad we did hook up, because otherwise we probably never would have become good friends. Darryl, our mutual friend, likes to keep his different groups of friends from intersecting. Mike agreed and went on to say he was glad too, because when we first met he thought I was rude and unfriendly.

*boiiiiii-iiiiii-iiiiing*
ow.

[Flashback: We first met at his house. He was hosting a birthday brunch for Darryl. The only person I knew at the party was Darryl. I am very shy in large groups of people I don't know. I thought I did a good job mingling and trying to meet people. I guess not.]

Tomoko and I got home around 12:45 (thanks to Emiliano for picking us up at the metro station. yay!).

Saturday ... slightly hungover. I blobbed around all morning. Then, Tomoko and I left at 2ish to go to a Pre-Pride Parade Party with Mike and Dennis. The party was fun. I met a few nice new people. Then, we walked down to the parade. Fun times. Afterwards, we were trying to decide where to go to dinner. Mike, Brian, and Gerardo (and maybe some others?) went to Straits of Malaya (although we thought they were going to Lauriol Plaza). Robert, Bill, Tomoko, and I went to Cafe Asia. On the way, this happened. After dinner, we headed home.

Sunday morning, more hungover blobbing. I headed down to the Pride Street Festival around 2ish. Met Ray and Joey. Then, went to say hi to Mike, who was volunteering in the OutFront (Amnesty Int'l) booth. Ran into Convertible Mike. Skillfully avoided a couple of people I didn't want to see. Talked for a bit. Then, Ray and Joey and I went to meet Robert in Dupont and wander over to Halo for drinks (see photo above). Then, the 4 of us went to Sette for dinner (mmm. pizza). Ray and Joey went home. Robert and I went to meet Mike to hear about his adventures at Cherry (the circuit party). We ended up in a coffee shop chatting for awhile.

I left around 10. Got home around 11. Tried to sleep. Couldn't. Goofed around on my laptop and finally went to bed around midnight. Still couldn't sleep. Tossed and turned all night with disturbing, yet oddly compelling, dreams.

And, I have officially declared this week to be Liver Resting Week 2007. If anyone wants to join me on the wagon, let me know. We can suffer together. I'm also considering going on a raw diet this week, but haven't quite committed. I need to think on it some more.

Don't forget: Today is Meat-Free Monday! Do your part for the environment by enjoying a delicious meat-free meal today!

And, finally, Y sent me some pictures from Tel Aviv Pride:
[Y is on the left.]

Friday, June 08, 2007

Accent on Accessories!

I'm bored. My eyeballs still hurt. Here are a few photos. Enjoy!

Today's wallet:


Purchased in Thailand a few years ago. Made from an old pair of Levis. Recycling! So hip! So trendy!

Today's wristwear:

Purchased when I worked in the Sackler Gallery of Art Gift Shop. The battery died a year or so ago. I haven't bothered to have it replaced. It's cute and it matches, so who cares?

Pride. It Goeth Before the Fall.

Last night, I met up with a former co-worker and envirobuddy, Dana, for drinks at a new restaurant, Gallery. New restaurant. Old crowd. And, one of Dana's friends was not too pleasant to be around. It was a total blast catching up with Dana though ... Perhaps, a more interesting venue next time, D?

After leaving Gallery, we headed over to the Whole Foods Plaza. Mmmm ... eggplant fries at Adega. And cute counter help. *giggle*

Lots going on this weekend. Not only is today the one year anniversary of the breakup with the cheating cheater, BUT it is also Capitol Pride. *woot*

Tonight, the kittens are gathering at Halo for happy hour [and might I add that I look particularly cute today]. Tomorrow, some of us are going with Mike to an afternoon Pre-Pride Parade Party and, then, staggering down the street to watch the parade. I don't have any plans for Sunday, but I'm fairly certain I will end up at the Street Festival at some point during the afternoon.

Finally, to get everyone in the mood for a festive Pride. Here's a paragraph from a short story I wrote during my class this Winter. Enjoy.
Standing on the edge of the sidewalk, watching the kaleidoscope of people and colors and banners file past, I felt for the first time in a long time a sense of place. There among the leather daddies, the twinks, the dykes on bikes, the bears, the tourists, the giddy straight girls and their uncomfortable, yet trying to be OK with it boyfriends, there among it all, with my friends, I felt it: This spot. This spot right here on 17th Street in front of La Frontera. This is where I belong. Here we are one. Here we are united. United by the desire to be superfantastic … and, maybe, to earn a sympathy fuck with someone way out of our league.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

I *Heart* Teh Gayz

Following a link from Faggoty-Ass Faggot, who got it from the Oprah Winfrey Show, I took Harvard's Sexuality Implicit Association Test. My results:

Your data suggest a strong automatic preference for Gay People compared to Straight People.

Surprised? I know I was!

Meanwhile, check this out: Sexiest Celebrity Vegetarian.

Anyone notice the GLARING OMISSION??

Here's a hint: Where's VUBOQ?

Smoke and Mirrors

I'm wearing one of my new pairs of shoes (not the Converse). They are stinky. Hopefully, they will not remain stinky.

Last night, I decided to make a frittata for dinner. I was going to caramelize half a red onion, slice up a tomato, use some fresh picked basil from my windowsill Chia Herb Garden, and add some yummy blue cheese.

As some of you may know, I am not the most patient cook in the world, and caramelizing an onion takes FOR-friggin'-EVER. Then, I remembered that the SuperFantastic Cuzin had told me that her mom does this "speed-caramelizing" thing in which she cranks up the heat and covers the pan. Voila! Caramelized in an instant!

So that's what I did. I cranked up the heat. Covered the pan. And went to go clean out the catbox. And started to dust. And brushed the kitty. And completely forgot about the caramelizing onions until *sniff* *sniff* What's that smell?

SMOKE! Smoke everywhere. Charbroiled extra-crispy black as night onions. The house filled with smoke. I cranked the fans, opened the windows, and learned that the smoke detectors in my apartment are not very sensitive.

I moved to Dinner Plan B - scrambled eggs with tomato, basil, and blue cheese. It was yummy.

I did laundry. V. exciting.

I had just popped in a movie when DUN came down for martinis and knitting [We were both feeling cranky earlier and needed to decrankify]. Mmm. martinis. Knitting. It was a lovely evening.

I am about 15 rows away from finishing the SuperSecret Long-Awaited Knitting Project! *woot*

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

When Cranky, Vuboq Buys Shoes



I can't decide if I like the first pair, but they were on sale. And who can say "no" to a shoe sale?

I am very liking the Converse though.

I also bought laundry detergent and got a roll of quarters. My days are filled with fun and excitement.

Meanwhile, yesterday, Y casually asked if I was going to meet him in NYC when he returns from vacation. I am kind of thinking about it now ... even though he gets back on a Sunday. I could go up to NYC for the weekend and stay with my wunnerful lawyerly friend, Alison. And, then, I could hang out with Y when he flies in. And he drove up, so I'd only need to buy a one-way ticket.

Of course, he will be all jet-lagged and shit, so -maybe- it isn't that good of an idea. What would you do?

2 Little Things That Annoyed the Shit Out of Me Yesterday

1. Woman in my building's elevator talking on her cell phone very loudly. We're in an elevator for chrissake, tone it down. I almost pulled out my cell phone and said, "I'm sorry, but I'm in an elevator so I can't talk now. Oh? That noise? It's some loud woman on her cell phone. In the elevator."

2. Every time I leave my office building I am swarmed by angst-ridden college kids schlepping for some Important Cause. No, I don't want to hear about endangered Tibetan tigers in the Himalayas. No, I don't want to give a few dollars to help Democrats take back the White House. No, I would not care for a Prayer Card. No. No. No. All I want is to go to the grocery store in peace so I can buy a bag of potato chips for lunch. What about my fast, determined pace and listening to my iPod indicates I want to talk to you?

Other than that my day was PeachyKeenWonderfulSunshinyHappiness.

More later.
*smooches*

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Meat-Free Monday: Achilles' Heel Edition

My mother is an excellent cook. However, she can't make a decent chocolate pie to save her life. Her first attempt at chocolate pie-making resulted in the, now legendary in our family, request, "I'd like another cup of pie, please."

Chocolate Pie is my mother's cooking Achilles' heel. Mine, it would seem, is mac 'n' cheese. The last time I tried to make mac 'n' cheese (from scratch, yo. I can make the box kind) the result was less than pleasing.

This time, although my teeth didn't feel chalky, the sauce was not creamy. And I burned the butter when making the roux. [The heat was too high.] And, then, thinking that the butter was ruined, I dumped in the flour and it went all foamy and brown. Totally weird. I still used it though.

Which made the milk, as it thickened, look kind of brownish. And it would get this weird skin on it that I had to keep stirring.

I started to lose patience with the milk so as soon as it looked sort of like it was getting thicker, I dumped in a cup of cheddar, a half cup of blue cheese, and ... um ... a big pile of grated parmesan that I didn't bother measuring.

Then, I poured that over the noodles. The taste? Yummy. The texture? Not too pleasing. Clumpy. Not creamy.

How the friggin' frig does one make a creamy cheese sauce for mac 'n' cheese? GAH!

Mac 'n' cheese, my Achilles' heel. Who'da thunk it?

What's your cooking Achilles' heel?

Monday, June 04, 2007

Immigration Nation Redux

When I was at my brother’s house for Christmas (and I may have blogged about this before but recent events have brought this story back to mind), he mentioned that his girlfriend’s son had brought home a letter from school: The front side of the letter was in English, but the reverse was in *gasp* SPANISH! My brother went on and on about how this is an English-speaking country this and how immigrants should learn English that. Finally, I had had enough and I asked him, “If you were a parent in a foreign country, wouldn’t you appreciate learning about your child’s education in your native language?”

He made some lame excuse about people needing to learn English. I told him maybe they are studying English, but it takes time to become fluent. Seriously, did he think people are born fluent in every language?

When I moved to Japan, I knew about 3 words of Japanese. As soon as I got there, I began to study very hard. Japanese is not an easy language to learn. Even after three years and being passably fluent, there were occasions when I appreciated receiving information not only in Japanese, but also an English translation.

When I was vacationing in Okinawa, I had to go to the hospital because my throat was so swollen I couldn’t swallow. I understood what the doctor was saying, but it didn’t make sense. I had a stone in my throat? Acid would make the stone move? What the fuck?

The doctor saw my confusion and pulled out an English medical dictionary. He turned to the correct page. Ah. It all made sense. I had a salivary gland stone which had become infected. If I ate sour food, it would make me salivate and eventually force the stone through the salivary duct.

The doctor prescribed some antibiotics and I spent a week drinking very sour local Okinawan citrus juice. What if that doctor had decided that Japanese is the national language and he shouldn’t have to provide me an explanation in English? Because of his kindness, I could better understand what was wrong with me.

I can only imagine what it would have been like to have had children in Japan. I would want to know what they were learning and to be able to communicate with their teachers. Maybe my Japanese would have been good enough (after several years), but a little added explanation in English would have helped.

I will be the first to admit that I do have some language prejudices. When I was working for the National Lead Information Center, I had a run-in, I mean, a polite conversation, with a woman from La Raza. La Raza had received a grant from EPA to help increase awareness of lead-based paint in Spanish-speaking communities. She was calling to test the responses of hotline staff.

After she identified herself, she proceeded to grill me:

“How long have you worked on this hotline,” she asked.
“Two years.”
“Have you ever worked with non-English speaking people?”
“Yes.”
“Would you care to explain,” she asked, with (in my interpretation) a snotty tone.
“I taught overseas in Japan and China for over 3 years.”
“Have you ever worked with disadvantaged people?”
“Besides teaching in Japan and China, I taught for 2 years in rural North Carolina and was a volunteer literacy tutor for several years.”
“What’s your educational background?”
“I have a [fucking] master’s degree in Global Environmental Policy,” I said and then thought “What’s yours?”
“Fine. May speak to your Spanish-speaking specialist?”
“Certainly. I’ll transfer you now.” Kitten. I don’t know why she was so snotty, but, when she got off the phone, she sent an email to our EPA contact stating that, while the staff “seemed knowledgeable,” the phone answering system needed improvement.

Her suggestion? As soon as the automated system picked up, the message should be in Spanish. At the time our phone message stated: Thank you for calling the National Lead Information Center. [Then, in Spanish] For Spanish, please press 2. [Then, it returned to English.]

The woman felt that (1) “Thank you for calling the National Lead Information Center” should be in Spanish and (2) Spanish speakers should press 1. Why? Because a non-English speaker would hear the English when the phone answered, become confused, and hang up. Fortunately, my boss was a bit calmer than I, and she explained to our EPA contact that (1) 97% of our calls were English-speakers and (2) raised the point that if the entire message began in Spanish, a lot more English-speakers would probably hang up.

Our EPA contact agreed, but we did change the Spanish message to “For Spanish, please press 1.”

Pressing a one or a two is no big deal. Although, a lot of listening-impaired Anglos still pressed 1 and were connected to our Spanish-speaking specialist. HA!

Anyway, the whole point of this entry is, I suppose, that I’m OK with bilingualism. The important test to apply is one that I’ve heard people apply to gay marriage: Who does it hurt? Does allowing gay marriage hurt heterocouples? Does having to press a 1 or 2 to hear the language with which you are most comfortable hurt anyone else? Does providing students with bilingual letters home hurt anyone?

The answer? It be no. Live with it. Deal with it. And move on.

I've Spent All Day Emailing My Cousin About Booze

And the consensus seems to be that I should drink a negroni tonight.
Mmm ... negronis.

[In case you don't know, a negroni is equal parts gin, campari, and sweet vermouth. Although the cousin has suggested using dry vermouth ... which I may try tonight to see how I like it.]

And, I think I'm going to make mac n' cheese for Meat-Free Monday tonight. What are *YOU* making?

Nightmares

Last night, I had trouble sleeping. Among the tossing and the turning and the odd dreams about being in contestant's row on The Price Is Right (and why did I bid $2.89 on the jar of JIF peanut butter?), I had some disturbing dreams. First, I dreamed that my cat, Sherlock, who died in 1996ish (at the ripe old age of 14), was walking across my bed. GHOST CAT! Creepy.

Then came the dreaded "there is someone else in the room" dream. Augh. I totally hate that dream. Needless to say, it freaked me out, and I had a hard time falling back asleep. It's times like this that I really hate sleeping alone.

The odd thing is that I haven't had creepy dreams like that in quite some time. In fact, it was almost exactly one year ago today that they started happening on a frequent, recurring basis. Yes, today is the one year anniversary of my discovery of the Cheating Cheater's cheating. I'm going to try not to dwell on it too much this week, but forgive me in advance if I do.

One of the good things that came out of that experience is my friendship with Mike. So, it wasn't all bad. Yay.

But, enough about that (for now, at least), I was able to blog a couple of times this weekend, so not much to update. Yesterday, it rained. A lot. So I didn't go into the District. Instead, I stayed home, watched some movies, and knitted like a fiend. I am *this* close to finishing the Super Secret Long-Promised Knitting Project. *woot* Then, Tomoko and Emiliano came down for wine and cheese. That was fun.

Don't forget today is Meat-Free Monday! Do your part for the environment by enjoying a meat-free meal. And, hey, why don't you blog about it, too?

*smooches*

Sunday, June 03, 2007

The Rain

I started this short story last night, but decided it wasn't going anywhere. So, here are two paragraphs of blah. Enjoy.

The Rain

It smelled of rain. The morning sun crept in through the gap in our thick velvet curtains. When I opened them wider, I smelled the coming rain. I smelled it the way I always have, ever since I was a child. I smelled it the way Mama smelled the beer on my Dad’s breath, even before he started one of his drinking binges. I could smell snow, too, which makes sense, if you think about it. Snow smells like rain, only colder. I told Daniel rain was coming, but he insisted on packing the picnic basket and loading the car.

“Have I ever been wrong before,” I asked him, as we drove up the mountain. “Have I?”
Daniel stared straight ahead. “I don’t want to argue about this.”
“OK. But don’t blame me when we’re halfway through the picnic and we have to run to the car.”
“Why did you come then,” he asked with frustration.
“Why did you insist on going,” I replied.
“This isn’t getting us anywhere.”
“I know. Fine. I came because I wanted to spend …” I paused, remembering what he had told me long ago. “I came because I wanted to share time with you,” I corrected myself. “But we could’ve shared time back at the house. Out of the rain. Where it would be warm and dry.”
“It’s NOT raining. There isn’t a single cloud in the sky.”
“I know, but I smell it. It’s coming.”
We rode the rest of the way in silence.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

A Martini in the Hand is Better Than Two at the Bush's

First, I'm a winner! *woot* Go me! I felt it might be inappropriate to gloat in GayProf's comments, but -since we are in Vutopia now- I ROCK! The rest of you? I spit in your general direction! *victory dance*

Of course, the spitting? It's done with love. Really. I love you all! Yes. Yes, I do. Every single one of you. Even you! *smooches*

[And, no, I'm not drunk ... yet.]

Anyway, the It Was a Dark & Stormy Night Party was a HUGE success! I had so much fun! And the Dark & Stormies are YUMMY! Here's the recipe:

Fill a highball glass with ice.
Add 2 oz. Gosling's Black Rum.
Stir.
Add 3-4 oz ginger beer
Squeeze two thin wedges of lime.
[You can also add some fresh sliced ginger]

They were awesome. So refreshing. So intoxicating! Mmmm ... You all should run out and make them tonight. Really. They are *that* good. I might have another one (or two) tonight.

In attendance were Steveandbobby, Mike, New Upstairs Neighbor (formerly known as Tomokito) [NUN(fkat)] and her husband, Diagonally Upstairs Neighbor (DUN) and her supercute boyfriend, and Across-the-way Neighbor (AtwN). It was a good crowd. Lots was eaten. Lots was drunken. (er ... drunk?). Everyone left around midnightish. Fun times. Fun times ...

Especially when DUN's supercute boyfriend dumped A GALLON of lamp oil on my wonderful sofa ... [OK, it wasn't "a gallon" and -fortunately- there is no stain. Yay for Vuboq having the foresight to pay an extra $150 for superspecial stain protection!]

AND, it would seem that the "should I go out with the new guy while Y is away" dilemma has resolved itself (temporarily, at least). In my madcap attempt to clean and straighten my apartment before the party, I put the scrap of paper on which I wrote his phone number ... somewhere. Can't find it. Maybe I threw it away? Durf.

Today, I did a lot of blobbing around the house. And some cleaning up of the party dishes. I walked to the grocery store. Dinner is tomato and cucumber salad and pasta with a garlic pesto-like substance made by DUN.

A quiet night in. *aaaaaaaaaaah*

Maybe I'll finally watch All About My Mother. I've had it for weeks, but haven't been in the mood to read a movie.

No special plans for tomorrow, but I think I'll head into the District for a bit in the afternoon.

*smooches*

Friday, June 01, 2007

We Interrupt Your Regularly Scheduled Friday for This Very Important Pictoral Announcement:


Draggy

But, not (too) queeny.

The combination of heat and a skoosh too much booze last night has resulted in me being not well-rested and slightly headachy this morning. oog. I really should turn on the a/c, but I remembered that towards the end of the summer last year the Little Air Conditioner that Could nearly conked out, sending forth only moderately conditioned air (wash, rinse, repeat).

I turned it on briefly two nights ago to make sure it was working. It was. Although, it did spew forth some lovely bits of black gunk. I haven't turned it on again, because I want my apartment to be cool for my It Was a Dark & Stormy Night party tonight. AND, I didn't want to risk the Little Air Conditioner that Could conking out prior to the party.

See how I suffer for my friends?

Meanwhile, last night, I watched the movie Kinky Boots, which I first saw on Tomokito's Netflix queue. I am not surprised she liked it - a movie about SHOES! and Drag Queens! What's not to love?

I was also on gay.com briefly. I saw the Cheating Cheater on there and sent him the following message:

"Update your profile, because I can't handle everyone thinking I'm older than you."

Then, I logged off. Well, more accurately, my internet connection fizzled. *cough* *spurt*

I know, I know. I shouldn't have messaged him. But, come on, he's nearly 3 weeks older than I am, and his profile still says he's 36 (or 34, I can't remember). gah.

So far, I have no real plans (other than the It Was a Dark & Stormy Night party) for the weekend. I have the potential for a date on Saturday. I'm supposed to call him on Saturday to firm up details. But, I don't know ...

I tend to get all wrapped up in one guy at a time. And, even though we have no mutually exclusive dating commitment, I still feel a twinge of ... guilt? ... just thinking about seeing someone else. Serial Monogamist.

Mmmm... Monogamy Cereal. Like Fruit Loops, but with just one flavor at a time.