Saturday, March 31, 2012

Philadelphia: Gelato Edition

Good Morning, Kittens!

As you may recall, I am on a kind of Work Hiatus, which, I just found out has been extended to -possibly- April 16th. WTF ... but, today, is not the day to focus on the clusterfuckery that is my job. That will come later. I promise.

Anyway, so during this Hiatus, I decided to take a little trip to PHILADELPHIA!!!! I love the City of Brothers Who Love. Mostly, because I have some SuperCool Friends there. BUT, also, because it has really good food and gelato and interesting buildings and history and cobblestones and lots and lots of very hot men.

So, I departed my abode early Wednesday morning, boarded a MegaBus, and was off! I arrived at 30th Street Station around 1:30. I met Lora at Parc for a late (and very boozy) lunch. Then, we walked over to my hotel, the Latham, so I could check in. The ceiling in my bathroom was mirrored (well, reflective). This cracked us up.


Lora had to go back to work (or something). I took a nap. Around 5:30, I headed over to this supercute vegetarian restaurant, Vedge, to meet my friend, Vic, for happy hour. The happy hour was awesome! This is the menu:

Korean! Seitan! Taco! FTW! at Vedge in PhillyI may (or may not) have had one of everything.

Vic, who sings in the Gay Men's Chorus of Philadelphia, had to go to a rehearsal. I hung out at the bar for a little while longer, chatting up a group of drunk runner-ladies. Then, I headed up the street for some gelato (pictured above): Dark Chocolate and Thai Coconut. NOMZ!

I was tired and a little drunk, so I headed back to the hotel and ended up watching a Die Hard Movie Marathon. Cable! It is so exciting! (srsly)

Thursday morning, I slept late. And blobbed around the hotel room until 11 or so, when I left to meet Lora for lunch at this kind of dive-y little vegetarian restaurant, Govinda's Vegetarian.

Veggie Cheesesteak at Govinda'sGet the "chicken" cheesesteak.

After lunch, we walked up the street for (can you guess?) more gelato. This time, I had dark chocolate and orange/cardamom.

UntitledOne of us may (or may not) have died and gone to heaven.

After that, we headed over to some restaurant (I can't remember the name. It had "buzz" in it mabye), to share a bottle of wine. Lora, then, had to go (*sad face*), so I went back to the hotel for a nap.


Once I awoke, I headed to Tria for dinner. But, it was PACKED! So, I went to Farmer's Cabinet for several cocktails, whilst my Team of Philadelphia Food Experts tried to figure out where I should eat. I ended up at Vintage. I think it's a wine bar. They're veggie burger was superyummerz. Nom.

Solitary dinner at Vintage

Well-fed, I left the restaurant to get more gelato ... this time I tried Cashew and Bananas Foster. So tasty! But it didn't photograph well (the colors were too similar. Oh, well). As I was eating my gelato, Vic texted. He was getting out of rehearsal. We met up and went to the drinking part of a Hashing event. The people there were very friendly (and quite drunk). Good times.

Vic and I went back to my hotel and, um, talked?

And, then, in the morning, I staggered around packing, checked out, and met Lora for a final (non-boozy) meal at Cosi. Then, I walked to a likker store to buy some Bluecoat Gin (so yummy), made my way to the bus stop, and headed home.

Once back in the DeeCee, I headed to my hair appointment (after a pitstop at Chipotle). Yay for being re-blonded.

After my appointment, I met Mike (Who Makes Cakes) and some of his co-workers for drinks/food at Cafe Ole. And, then, we went to American University's drama department's performance of "The Putnam County Spelling Bee" (or something like that). Very cute.

And, then, I came home and fell asleep. The end!

Have a beautiful Saturday. The rest of the photos are here.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Cooper's Compadres

Good Morning, Kittens!

Why don't you click on over to Cooper's Corner today? The Best Kitteh EVER is being featured as one of Cooper's Compadres.

Have a wonderful day!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Week Update: OMG, Where Have I Been

Good Morning, Kittens.

It has been awhile, hasn't it? Sorry about that ... Last week was a bit of a hot mess. I had to go to Franconia-Forking-Springfield every day because my contractual issues still had not been worked out. Of course, they still haven't been worked out, so I am on Paid Leave this week. More on that later ...

The only good thing about going to Franconia-Forking-Springfield was that I got to hang out with Amy, the Blogger Formerly Known As Shallowgal. She took me out for lunch one day. We went to this cute little Thai place. I can't remember the name. Bangkok something? It was delicious.

Friday, after work, I met Eric (Not From Baltimore), his boyfriend, and another friend of theirs for happy hour/dinner. We went to Sidebar/Jackie's in Silver Spring. The cocktails were delicious (highly recommended!). The service was lackluster. And, the food was also quite tasty, but -in my opinion- over-priced for what it was. So, go for the cocktails. Have dinner somewhere else.

Saturday, my co-worker, Dana, took me to Frederick (MD). The weather was crap, but it was still fun. We ate yummy food at some organic/all-natural restaurant. Very healthy. We walked around for a bit. Then, had beer and fried foods. And, then, we drove back.

I headed to Ulah Bistro on U Street to meet my aunt and uncle, who were visiting from Maine. It was good to see them and catch up, for sure.

Then, on Sunday, I went for a 10 mile run. Ugh. So dying. And, afterwards, I went to a friend's birthday brunch at Beacon Bar and Grill. This friend is a guy I hooked up with during the Summer of Fun a few summers ago. I think he still has a bit of a thing for me. At the brunch, I sat beside this really cute guy, K. We talked quite a bit. And drank a LOT of mimosas.

After the brunch, most of the group went to Nellie's for more drinks. Yay! K offered to drive me to the metro station. And, we decided to take a detour to his house. Much fun was had. He mentioned that it would be OK if I stayed the night (believe me, I was tempted), but I had to get home to watch the Mad Men season premier at Tomokito's place. So, he drove me to the metro station. I got home just in time to put on my comfy pjs and grab a bottle of prosecco.

Mad Men was awesome. 'nuff said.

As I mentioned, my contract is still in flux, so my company said that I could scrounge around for work all week or I could take a week of leave. I opted for the leave, mainly because I didn't want to spend a week being a go-fer and traveling to Franconia-Forking-Springfield is EXPENSIVE.

So, today and tomorrow, I am kicking it at home - relaxing, cleaning, doing some yard work, job-hunting, etc. Wednesday-Friday, I am going to Philadelphia. I splurged and am staying at a kind of expensive hotel, but I'm worth it :-)

I think that brings you up-to-date. Have a great day!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Weekend Update: The Best Weekend of the Year Edition

Good Afternoon, Kittens!

So, yesterday, was the Best Day of the Year! I hope you spent it the way God intended: Spending some quiet time reflecting on the Awesomeness of VUBOQ and then getting stupid drunk. At least, that's pretty much what I did ...

On Friday, I had the day off (yay!). I did lots of shopping and cleaning. Having a (mostly) clean house is sooooooo nice. Late that afternoon, FedEx stopped by. I had a package! Someone sent me this:

It's a t-shirt! And SUPERCUTEZ! (In fact, I'm wearing it right now). There was no note, so thank you, Mystery Person, for the t-shirt! I *heart* it.

Saturday morning, I slept in! Yay! Until, like, 9. Isabella wouldn't let me sleep any later. Silly kitteh. I opened up my birthday package from my parents. It was chock full of goodies! Cookies! Cheese biscuits! Gift cards to Barnes & Noble and Jaleo! Yay!

Then, I went for a 7 mile run. I set a 10K PR - 55:18. Go me! (Of course, while I was struggling through 7 tedious miles, Tomokito was running the DC National Marathon. Crazypants!)

After getting cleaned up, I took myself out to lunch for my traditional Saint Patrick's Day meal:

Traditional St. Paddy's Day lunch. Spinach enchiladas. What?Spinach Enchiladas. Very Irish.

And, then, back home to nap and get ready for my birthday party. The theme of the party was 42nd Street (the movie musical). I told everyone to wear black and white and we'd watch the movie and have champagne cocktails.

For the cocktails, I made flavored simple syrups. I got the idea from Martha Stewart's Ginger Sparklers recipe. In addition to ginger syrup, I also made lemon, blueberry, and jalapeno. I was planning on making garam masala syrup too, but I didn't have enough sugar (and I was too lazy to go back to the store).

Here's the set-up:

From l-r: Blueberry, Jalapeno, Lemon, and Ginger

And here's the spread:

Houndstooth Napkins! *squeee!*

And the decorations:

And the cake:

by Mike (Who Makes Cakes)

The cake is pistachio. Mike used my mom's recipe. She used to make me pistachio cake for my birthday every year. So it tasted like my childhood. And, the fondant he used to make the buildings was chocolate fondant. And really good. I don't usually like fondant, either. Nom nom nom.

I have a shit-ton of cake leftover. So, who's coming over to eat some?

The party was a blast! We drank about 7 bottles of champagne. The last guest left a little after 1. I quickly tidied up and went to bed. More pictures are on flickr.

Today I have done nothing but blob on the sofa.

It was definitely the Best Day of the Year and the Best Weekend of the Year, too!

Have a great day!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Quoth the VUBOQ, Nevermore!

Good Evening, Kittens.

Apologies for the lack of postings, there is something about waking up earlier than normal to commute to Baltimore and getting home later than usual that is, like, totally exhausting.

Yeah, so I was at this conference for 3 days. It was good. I learned a lot. And, there was a lot of free time ... Unfortunately, Eric from Baltimore was too busy (*cough* he hates me *cough*) to hang out during lunch. As were a couple of other friends. *sigh* Somehow, I managed to survive on my own ...

So the highlight of Day One was this:

Eggplant "Meat"loaf Sandwich from B & O American Brasserie

Also, two glasses of wine. It's OK to drink during lunch ... at a conference!

The highlight of Day Two was this:

When in Baltimore ...I'm not even that big a fan of the EAP, but when in Baltimore ...

Also, beer. And a little more beer. And, then, I may have had some more beer. (What? It was beautiful day, and I found a patio. It's allowed.)

The highlight of Day Three was this:

Take that, Conference in BaltimoreThis might be what it looks like.

Are you sensing a theme?

Seriously though, the conference was pretty good. Most of the sessions were informative. I made some good contacts at the Expo. AND, I am pretty sure I'm going to win an iPad.

One of the vendors had a contest. To enter, you had to write down what this fluorescent light fixture was thinking. (I know. Weird.). So I wrote:

"Turn me off (even though I like to be turned on)."

I think that has winner written ALL OVER IT.

AND, you may be surprised that in a conference filled with facility managers, engineers, and construction guys, I deemed myself to be the Most Fashionable ...

Jacket by Uniqlo, Shirt by Ralph Lauren, Good Looks by the Grace of God

Also, Miss Congeniality. There are a few more pix in my Baltimore Conference Set.

In other news, it is the Ides of March. I hope you are bewaring ... especially because it is, perhaps, better known as the Best Day of the Year Eve Eve. You may want to start rushing all those presents to Fedex/UPS now.

OMG. I'm going to be 42. Does this mean I'll start developing moobs?

Have a great evening!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Checking In

Good morning, kittens!

Just checking in. I'm in Charm City for a conference. I leave super early and get home all tired.

Other than that, all is well. I'll have a more detailed post up in the next few days. And, just in case you've forgotten, today is Pi Day! (mmmm. Pi) And, only three more days until the Best Day of the Year. Have you done your shopping? Are your packages in the mail?

Have a great day!

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Gertrude, Patron Saint of teh Kittehs

Good Morning, Kittens.

Last night, my mother called me. She had bad news. I guessed it immediately.

Gertrude, Isabella's bitchy younger sister, was put down. She had been withering away slowly since January. Losing weight. Not eating. Being all listless. Which, if you'd ever met Gertrude, you knew "listless" was not in her vocabulary.

I was going to link to the post of the story of how FrankenKitty Gertrude came into our lives, but I realized that it must have been prior to my switch to blogger ... Possibly the Summer of 2005 ...

A friend of mine sent out an email saying that she had a friend who worked in the animal labs at George Washington University. And they had a cat there, who was originally purchased for some testing, but then funds ran out. They kept her around for awhile, making her a lab "pet" ... but, eventually, they had to get rid of her. If they couldn't find a good home, she was going to be put down.

I emailed my friend that I would take her if no one else would.

Guess what?

A few days later, I had a new cat ... who DID NOT LIKE OTHER CATS.

She and Isabella did not become BFFs. And Gertrude had several pounds (and claws) to express how much she didn't like the Psychokitty.

After several months of trying to get them to like each other (Can't we all just get along?), I threw in the towel. I convinced my parents to take Gertrude. I knew that, as a single cat and in a loving home, she would thrive.

And thrive she did! She even accepted another cat, Watson, when he adopted my parents.

So, as I told my parents, she had 6 really great years in a loving home. What more could a unwanted kitteh want? And, now, she is buried beside Watson (who died suddenly last summer), in their backyard.

It's funny (or maybe not so funny) how the death of a pet can sometimes be more upsetting than the death of a person. So, Santa Gertrudes, you'd better take care of your namesake (or my mother is going to have words with you ...)


Tuesday, March 06, 2012

A Thinly Veiled Insult

Good Evening, Kittens!

The other day, I received the following anonymous comment on a post:

You may think this is a complement but you're too thin and bald is not a good look on you.

Now, I can't really do much about the balding part. It's genetic. Stupid receding hairline. At least the Colornatrix can disguise it until I have one very thin, very long, blond hair wrapped around my scalp.

As for the "too thin" part, I am 6 feet tall and I weigh somewhere between 135-140 pounds.

My Primary Care Physician is not concerned about my weight. My assumption is that those of you who are making comments about me being too thin are not my Primary Care Physician (of course, if you are, I think you should tell me in person and not by making anonymous comments on my blog. That's why I (well, my insurance company) pay you the big bucks). In fact, I seriously doubt that you, Anonymous Commenters, even hold a medical degree.

I eat healthy food (most of the time). I take a couple of vitamin supplements. I exercise regularly. Pretty much all of the people who have seen me naked have not been disappointed. And I am happy with my weight. Can you say the same?

So, to all of the Anonymous people out there who think I am "too thin," I say this ... and I say it as nicely as I know how ... Fuck you.

I will add that if you *still* think I am "too thin," why don't you spend some time looking at these pictures ... and, then, instead of criticizing me, go donate some of the money you would have spent stuffing Twinkies (or HoHos - depending on where your proclivities lie) into your fat face to this organization (or another one that devotes its time to feeding and providing healthcare to people in need).

Have a great night!

Monday, March 05, 2012

Weekend Update: Days of Nothing Special Edition

Good morning, kittens!

I am sitting here staring out the window wondering if those are actually snow flurries I'm seeing or if it's time to schedule an eye appointment. I love my occasional Monday off :-)

My weekend was full of not doing much. On Friday, after work, I stopped by the Whole Foods and picked up a frozen pizza and some pistachio gelatto (and a box of wine and some bourbon from the likker store). I ate pizza, drank wine, and watched "Horrible Bosses," which had a few laugh out loud moments ... so I give it 3 stars!

Saturday, I went for a 5 mile run. I set a couple PRs: Fastest 5K (25:38) and Fastest Mile (7:54). I also have run 100 miles since getting my new Nike+ GPS watch for Xmas. When I got back, I borrowed K-Factor's blender and made a green smoothie:

Green smoothie

I used some of my credit card points to buy a new blender (it is small, only holds 14 oz) and zhuzher. As soon as I get them, I am totally going to zhuzh some soup!

Then, I finished my taxes! Hello, refund (in a couple of weeks). It's not as big as last year's refund (boo. I blame Republicans ... also, I blame Montgomery County's ridiculously high tax rate). But, I will be donating 10% to some local charities and still have enough to put into savings for a Rainy Day and a New Pair of Shoes (What? It's almost Spring! The Shoe-atorium is about OVER! YAY!).

Around 5PM, I headed to Downtown Silver Spring to meet SCGB and his BF at Adega for drinks. Along the way, I saw some signs of spring:

Croci!I also saw two dead robins. I didn't take pix of them though.

After drinks (and some food), I headed home, blobbed on the sofa, ate some food, drank more wine ... Y'know, the usual.

On Sunday, I went to the pottery studio. I didn't throw anything new, but I did do some trimming and handle-making (see photo above). After that, I came home, tidied up a little (a very little), ironed ten shirts, cooked some brussels sprouts for dinner, and spent the rest of the evening blobbing on the sofa.

Today, I've been to the Trader Joe's. I'm thinking of heading up to Adega for a boozy lunch. And, then, I'm going to blob on the sofa until dinnertime. After dinner, I'll be heading to pottery class.

Good times.

Hope you had an awesome weekend and a superfun Monday!


Thursday, March 01, 2012

Oh, Hai. It's March.

Good Evening, Kittens.

As you may remember, last year, I participated in the Puntabugang Swimsuit Calendar (Hello, I'm Mr. December). This year, the theme of the Calendar is Holidays. And, I am March, which has the Best Day of the Year and the Best Holiday of the Year in it. And, they just so happen to be the same day! Wow. How did that happen?

Fortunately for all of us, I am showing A LOT less skin this year, but -thanks to the incomparable photoshop skillz of Michelle M- my photo is still SUPERCUTEZ.

Oh, yeah. I'm at the end of the rainbow, bitches.

We weren't able to find photos of shirtless Leprechauns to dance around me, but I think it's a fun photo even without them.

I've already committed to next year's calendar! Can't wait to find out what the theme is ... I hope it isn't something like "S&M Fantasies" ... or maybe that could be fun.

Have a great night!