The Way I See It…Thanks Starbucks

Starbucks is a way of life for some. Don’t be mad but I do visit my local Starbucks… frequently. Mostly because I am too lazy to grind my ordered coffee beans, pack them into the thingy, brew, and then steam my milk. Seems like too much work. So the American laziness came out when our company moved and there is a Starbucks on the way to work. So I stop.

Don’t worry my friends things are about to change. After my visit to Minnesota, I brought home some coffee beans. Beans that I cannot get out here, unless I order online and have them shipped, then yes I can get them out here. But that’s no fun. So while in the land of 10,000 beers, er I mean lakes, I picked up a bag of Caribou Coffee beans. If you have a subscription of Consumer Reports you would have read about their coffee. If you don’t, then you’ll just have to believe me.

These beans smell so good and amazingly taste good too. Wow, for the first time, coffee that tastes like it smells! It’s a whole new morning for me. So now the bad news. I have to clean out my espresso maker, grind my beans, pack them into the little thingy, brew and steam my milk. So the way I see it (opinions on Starbucks cups) it might give me a sense of accomplishment if and when I ever brew my own latte. The way Starbucks sees it, they might be seeing me just as much. But I’ll try not to let that happen. Oh, the challenge is on!

Chit to the Chat

In certain situations we tend to chit chat. So what do we chit chat about? Oh lots of stuff. It can vary to the easiest the weather, or to how you are doing, all the way to whom you are doing.

I was at the orthodontist the other day getting an adjustment. Actually, there isn’t any adjustments made, just a different color put on. But that day, major adjustments were done. So after my rubber bands were taken off, I sat there reclined waiting for the Ortho to come around. This one assistant was there when I had my braces put on and I hadn’t seen her since. I don’t know everyone’s name there, so let’s call her Sara. With the blonde hair and facial mask, she looks like a Sara. So Sara looks at me and says, “How have you been?” “Good, I see there are lots of new faces here.” “Yes there are.” So I think, should I introduce myself, they all know my name so that would be dumb. But I don’t know their names. This seems a little unfair.

“I like what you’ve done to your hair” she said. “Thanks.” and Ortho showed up in the nick of time with more wire to stick in my mouth. This chit chat was unusual because they never talk to me there. It’s usually just the Ortho talking to me and assistants like Sara asking me what color I would like. So in this case the chit chat was a nice change. Heck, these people are seeing me for another year, they should get to know me!

Chit chat at work is different. Most of the time it’s to A) learn something about your co-workers or B) get out of doing what is killing you at the time. B seems to be my reason for it. But sometimes it can go too far. Like today. I’m sitting in my office editing and one of the fellow ladies said that she’s “shacking up with her husband this weekend.” Um, ok. Gross. And she used the term “shacking up” which just showed her age even more. That kind of chit chat is unacceptable in my book. I don’t want to know of older people “shacking up” married or not. In our office that would have created a “hostile work environment” or an “unwelcomed comment.” I learned that in Diversity Training. And I plan to use these comments to the fullest extent of the office law! I should have gone to her and said, “Your comment about shacking up was an unwelcomed comment.” But I don’t have balls.

Don’t forget the chit chat that you weren’t meant to hear. This is generally the best. Let’s say you are walking to the water cooler and there is a office right by it. A conversation about someone is going on. And it’s good chat. So you take your time, milling around the cooler taking sips of your water getting all the chat you can take until someone notices you. Or you are in your office and people are talking outside of it. Naturally your ears perk up if you are not involved with what you are doing. And remember I’m always under the “B” category so I tend to listen and look right at them. Maybe I shouldn’t make it so obvious. I’ll try to remember that for next time.

I should introduce some new chit chat topics. But it’s too hard to come up with some ahead of time. I guess spur-of-the-moment chit chat is the best. But honestly, I don’t want to hear about you shacking up.

Ode to Halloween

I really like Halloween. My husband does too. This is the only time of year where we can dress up and have fun (I know it’s cliche). And we usually find a great party to go too. Since it’s only August and no parties have been named, we have already picked out our costumes in preperation for a potential gathering.

Now before I tell you what they are, don’t pee your pants, I want to explain the thought process behind the selections:

Justin always finds some crazy character to be. I’m still waiting for him to ask me to make a Batman suit, I’m really surprised it hasn’t come up yet. So this year was no different in picking his. He wanted to be a character that you really wouldn’t know about unless you lived in our world. The geek world. Last year he was Strong Bad, the comical, flash annimation character made famous by reading his e-mails. So I made him a mask that looked like Strong Bad and he had red boxing gloves and he was a hit at the geek party we went to. He took the gloves off to eat, but didn’t take the mask off. Let’s just say, his mouth was dirty.

So this year when Napolean Dynamite came out Halloween popped in his head. “I’m going to be him for Halloween!” “Napolean?” “NO! Rex Qwan Doo.” Oh geez! But actually it will be much easier to make that costume than the Strong Bad one, oh the pain! So over the 4th of July weekend, we went to the material store and bought striped and starred material, shooting glasses, and a bandana. I had to find a pattern for the pants. They are parachute pants and yes, they still make a pattern. Look out Rex Qwan, Justin is going to teach you a lesson in Qwan Dooing!

My costume idea is always based on something completely different. I choose whatever I wanted to be when I was a kid. This year, I’ve departed from that school of thought. Last year I was Hermione Granger from Harry Potter. Nothing fancy, but I did make it. Justin even ordered me the Gryffindor patches for my cape. GEEK I know, but it was fun. So this year, with my marathon training, my legs are shaping up. And by October 31, they should be hot. With that in mind, I’ve decided to be an adult version of the St. Pauli Girl. And so people know why I’m dressed like a bar maiden, I’ll walk around with a six pack of the beer. I’ll be like the beer fairy, handing out cool frosty beverages. I’m sure to be a hit, if not, the beer will be. Rex Qwan Doo has a new lady in town, St. Pauli Girl.

Scully, my min-pin, has been a witch for 2 years. But since she’s an adult now (just graduated dog obedience!) we are dressing her up as a horse. She’s really excited. She’s been practicing her naying and she’s getting pretty good!

So there you have it. I hope you figure out what you are going to be. You only have 2 months left! Hurry up or all the good costumes will be gone.

Land of 10,000 Beers

My husband and I are heading to Minnesota on Friday to attend his 10 year High School reunion. Should be interesting because it seems everyone in Minnesota drinks. Beer is the drink of choice everywhere. However, it’s not like Wisconsin where you have a bar selling Blue Ribbon every block. And I mean EVERY block. Especially in the small towns, more bars than people!

A few months back I started training for the Las Vegas Marathon and now Justin runs with me. I’m not sure, but I think he wants to get rid the belly, the product of too much beer. He’s doing a great job (keep it up justy!) so I’m sure his belly will be gone, but I don’t think by Friday. To perpetuate the drinking problem, his parents called us a couple of days ago to ask what kind of beer we wanted in the house. Justin named off a bunch of different ones. So yesterday they called to tell us they got about 5 different kinds. Um, ok. I know I’ll be on vacation, but I don’t want every night to be a drinking contest with the fam.

Everytime we go home to Minnesota it’s like a High School/College reunion. Justin is in touch with most of his old classmates. We fly in, hang out and guess what, drink beer. So I assume the reunion won’t be that different. Just more bellies to look at. Now I’m painting a pretty bad picture of my husband, but he’s not over weight at all, just has this little belly that I assume all men have.

Here is my predicted run down of my vacation in Minnesota:
Plane lands, change, off to the reunion, drink beer.
Next morning, get up, drive to Wisconsin, drink beer.
Go to the Dells, drink beer all day (get dehydrated).
Probably go shopping and have beer at lunch and dinner.

See a pattern. I will be there for more than a week and I’m guess that I will probably consume 2 cases of beer while there. Holy crap, that’s a lot of beer. I hope I’m up to it.

Pen and Paper

Since becoming an adult pen and paper have become somewhat useless in my life. Well mostly the paper part. I still need a pen to write out my checks and copy phone numbers down on the back of an envelope. But soon there will be a day when I won’t even need a pen anymore. Actually I guess if I tried, I could live without pens now. If you’ve been paying attention, I wrote in a previous post (refer to post “Time of our Lives”) about time and technology. We now have the technology to make our lives paper and penless.

I really enjoy writing out my checks. Keeping track of what bills I’ve paid. It’s easy when you have them in hand. You know that you’ve sent them on time without any penalty. Well if you do send them in on time. But now everything is automatic bill pay and checkfree stuff. But I thought I found a loop hole.

When I go to Target (which I do on a sometimes daily basis) I get excited because even though I use my bank or credit card, I think I’m going to use a pen to sign my name to paper. Not so at Target and as I’m figuring out, most places. They give you their little comptuerized pen and you have to sign in this little box (not even paper) and then your signature looks so crappy like a 2 year-old did it. It’s just so disappointing.

What’s more disappointing is remembering the last time you used a pen. I don’t think that my husband has used a pen in over a month when he had to write out a check. He has all of his phone numbers and dates in either his phone or PDA. He’s a programmer so he doesn’t write anything down at work. I worry about this. What if he forgets how to write? What about all those years in school where we were taught about margins, handwriting skills and spelling! I don’t get love letters anymore I get e-mails. Oh how romantic… an e-mail with a forward attachement on it of some picture he stole off of the net.

Don’t bring up the argument that I’m using this blog and not using paper. If I had paper and a pen I would use them in a heart beat. I have tons of great colored pens with glitter. Oh they are so girly. But I don’t remember the last time I bought paper! So what’s the point of my glitter-girly pens? I guess Citi Bank and Southwest Gas will just have to appreciate that they are getting their money on time… and in pink.

A Montage of Music

Last week Justin and I went to the local movie theater for one thing…DCI Quarter Finals. No it didn’t star T. Cruise or J. Depp. It has much better performers in it, Musicians.

I first got into music when I started playing the flute in 6th grade. Don’t make fun. Playing takes talent, dedication, practice, and peer pressure. The peer pressure is so that your arch rival in High School doesn’t take your spot in the flute section, or as I upgraded to, the piccolo section. Well the piccolo section was really only me, but I had to fight off potential wanna be’s.

I loved playing modern peices as well as classic. And as I became a better player, I also learned how to spin flag. No I didn’t play AND spin at the same time. Don’t be silly. But I became pretty good at spinning too. So I took my new career of color guard to a whole new level. I auditioned for a Drum and Bugle Corps when I was 19 and made it.

So the year was 1998 and I was part of one of the best all-girl color guards in the U.S. It was an exciting time. I wasn’t playing music, but I was appreciating it more and more. As well as appreciating some of the young, hot, tanned men in my corps. Oh so hot… oh I mean sweaty, it was hot in the summer, we got sweaty. Same thing happened in 1999, my last year to march. After that, I attended every show I could as well as going to Finals week. Sometimes it would be in D.C., Madison, Denver, and Buffalo but my husband and I loved it and missed it.

This year we couldn’t go to Boston. So we got to see Quarter Finals on the big screen. It seemed so silly to clap and cheer at a screen. They can’t hear us! Who are we kidding. But we did it anyway. So as a spectator we got to see all different types of shows. Some great, some stupid, some crappy, some stupid… did I say that already? Well the point is, some shows were themed but it was more of a montage of montages.

As stupid as they are, you still have to appreciate what they are doing on the field. Visually, musically and the entertainment value to you the spectator. They work hard to give you a show that is either great or well… you make the decision I’ve already made mine.

GQ’s so GQ

My husband and I were at one of our favorite sandwich shops here in Vegas, Jimmy John’s. Try if you come across it. The Club Lulu is my favorite, as well as saying lulu in my Texas accent. It really throws people off here. We were eating our yummy subs when somehow the topic of GQ came up. I don’t know. It could have been that we were talking about Courtney Love, but she’s not GQ. Oh, it could have been our talk about Foo Fighters. They are sorta GQ (you following the whole Nirvana theme here). But then our talk lead to GQ itself. What the heck does it mean?

Yes GQ stands for Gentlemen’s Quartely. It has great stuff on style and fashion for men. My husband has never picked up a copy. But since JFK junior started this manly fashion mag, the term GQ has been used in a different way. And that’s my question as well as my unfashionable husband’s too. What does GQ stand for in our unfashionable world?

We hear our friends, well we do it too, say something like, “That’s so GQ” or “You look GQ.” Which to me translates to, “That’s so Gentlemen’s Quartely” and “You look so Gentlemen’s Quartely.” I’m sure it wasn’t mean like that! JFK junior never intended it to be used like that or so I assume. But really what does it mean? We sat there, half way through our club lulu’s and dorritos pondering this thought. “Gotta Quit?” No. “Gansta Quarry?” No. “That’s so golfing quickly?” No. Nothing worked and the lulu’s were eaten.

So the question was never really answered. Until I had what therapists call a breakthrough. GQ is a magaizine about style and fashion for men. So it’s more of a lifestyle. The letters G and Q have no meaning to us, but the lifestyle does. So to give the compliment “You look GQ” is basically saying, “You’ve got fashion sense and it shows! I wanna jump your body now!” Any man hearing that would think, “Now I’m GQ.”