Archives for the month of: October, 2008

first of all: the post i put up a week or so ago about my “new romance”–it’s fake.  if you roll over the name Russ, you’ll see that it’s a link to my antibiotic (Rocephin) which i take intravenously.  it’s quite clever if you have this in mind.  for all of you that i deceived, i’m sorry! i don’t have a real boyfriend!  i just wanted to re-frame my being tethered to the couch.

in other news,

  • i switched jobs last week.  got laid off of one (a shock) and took another in about 24 hours.  my new job is wonderful in big and small ways.
  • i also dyed my hair.  it’s lovely and dark and fallish
  • my insurance situation continues to be a mess.  because i was laid off, my insurance premiums have risen unexpectedly (yes, i’m taking COBRA)…however, my awesome host dad from last year is helping me write an appeal to the bureau of insurance to try to get my insurance to cover my treatment.  oy.
  • my halloween costume is gonna rock
  • I watched Helvetica this weekend. If you’re a type nerd (like me) and haven’t seen it yet, i’d strongly encourage you to bump it to the top of your netflix queue.
  • yesterday was chock full of redemption
  • i’m wearing my boots with the fur.  i’m not putting away my open-toed shoes yet, though.
  • listening to waterdeep’s You are So Good to Me which is (in my opinion) the best album of contemporary worship music

No, thanks.  I just read an article from Wired called Twitter, Flickr, Facebook Make Blogs Look So 2004. The article encourages people to stop writing blogs and to just post videos and blurbs on facebook and twitter. ugh.

I’ve had a blog since fall 2004 and I really enjoy having a creative outlet. maybe other people don’t think in monologues, but I do, and I love being able to get the words just right in a forum other than my journal. I’ve thought about blogging a lot: is it inherently narcissistic? is it just adding to the noise and drivel on the internet? is it creating a false sense of knowing through an impersonal medium? hmm, maybe. and yet, here I am. I feel like there are too many things to be written about and I am glad that technology has given me the opportunity to post a few words in a place where dear friends can read them. Also, if I am adding to the noise and junk on the internet, I’d prefer to do it with complete sentences rather than with awkward fragments on Twitter.

Thoughts?

work exchange:

“the brochure looks good.  my only question now is what do we do with all this blank space?”
“that’s not blank space–that’s rest.  that’s shalom”
“oh, so i open the brochure and i’m smacked in the face with shalom”
“mmm, i guess i didn’t learn to BS in college as well as i thought”

i love chevre.  yum.

Introducing: Silver Goat Garlic & Herb Chevre available at Trader Joe’s.  it tastes a lot like like boursin with the seasoning and is very mild for goat cheese.   i like it on salads with a few tomatoes and kalamata olives, some lemon pepper chicken and olive oil.

as an added bonus, it is pretty cheap for gourmet cheese: about $5/lb.  also, the label is really shiny.

i like country music. i’m a little ashamed to admit it because if you meet me in the right context, i can wow you with my indie cred. i like to be all arrogant about how the Photo Album is Death Cab’s best. i saw Sufjan Stevens at the pabst theater and cried. i can part my hair so it completely obscures one eye. hip. emo. whatever.

but i like country. a lot. my ipod got stolen a few weeks ago and i’ve been fairly content toggling between country, rock and mix radio, going really heavy on the country. i used to hate country and for a long time i was ashamed to be a farm girl. only recently have i come to realize what a rich heritage i have and contrary to what i thought growing up, an area with lots of [agri]culture. my distain for this twangy genre changed to respect one misty night in michigan when a dear friend introduced me to a dixie chicks song. i was hooked. now here i am, listening to pop country on the radio. i haven’t bought too much country and i barely know who are the artists i like, but i’m learning. a friend helped me to see that country songs are compelling because many of them tell a story. i’ve compiled here for your pop country education a short list of songs that are catchy, clever, and heartwarming: my favorite songs from the radio over the last year or so. most of them have links to youtube videos for simplicity but the videos are sometimes weird or cheesy or high school slideshows set to music, so for best results just open it in another tab and listen. I hope you enjoy these. I’m going to go put on some chucks and dark eyeliner now.

Where the Green Grass Grows – Tim McGraw
Amarillo Sky – Jason Aldean
International Harvester – Craig Morgan
Holler Back – The Lost Trailers
Baby Girl – Sugarland
Born to Fly – Sara Evans
Who I Am – Jessica Andrews
Bbq Stain – Tim McGraw
Cleaning this Gun – Rodney Atkins
Cowboy Take Me Away – Dixie Chicks

I spent most of last year in a leadership development program that was focused on teaching recent(ish) college grads to integrate faith and calling and to understand that all work is holy. I learned a lot, but i was impressed this morning with how much i have to learn.

You see, every day I plunk a few quarters into a basket on the toll road. Usually the people at the booths nod or say thanks, but often they don’t acknowledge me at all. I always stop my train of thought and think about what their lives must be like with a job like that. Once I caught a woman leaning out of her window, eyes closed, catching the last bit of evening sun on her face. No matter what the interaction is, I figure that it’s not a big deal–after all, I’m just there to pay my toll and go on my way.

On Monday morning I drove up to the toll plaza with a dollar and needed change and I was greeted by a man with a Jamaican accent and a beaming smile who handed me my quarters and blessed me with  “Have a Great day!” I smiled for the next few minutes, then drove on to work. The next day I happened to get his booth again. I was floored. He was so nice and full of joy. Today I prayed that I’d be in his lane and I was. I plunked in my quarters, reflected back a big smile and said, “What’s your name?” (and then instantly felt a little creepy, but whatever). He told me it is Casey. I told him mine and to have a great day and continued on my way to work. It really made my morning.

Now, I have a cushy desk job with a good salary and a fantastic boss where I get to be creative. and I rarely shine like that.  I’m both humbled and inspired.  and with toll-booth workers like this, who needs an EZ Pass?

edit 10/16: i got his booth again this morning and said “Hey Casey!” he grinned and said “Abby!” close enough!

edit 10/29: i now have developed a lovely habit of slowing down, carefully studying the toll worker sillhouettes and the swerving to get Casey’s lane.  He know my name is Amy and I smile for about half of my morning commute.

edit 11/21: we’ve developed quite the rapport. Casey asked to come to my birthday party. I told him no, maybe next time. It’s a great story.

this blog serves many purposes, but for many of you, it’s our primary way of keeping in touch. i wanted to share with you about a new important relationship that’s developed in the last few weeks. some of you probably think i’m overly eager, writing this already on my blog when things aren’t even official, but i can’t help myself! a few of you have already met Russ at one of the movie nights i’ve hosted, but for those of you who haven’t, I just wanted to tell you a little about him.
First, a confession: he’s not who i thought i would be with at this stage of my life. he’s a little taller than me and definitely the strong silent type. We really like watching movies together, although sometimes we read books.  Like all relationships, there is some give and take: I have to let some things go, but I know it’s best for the long-term. He’s really chill and likes to stay close to home, but I don’t mind, because he seems to understand just what i need.  What he lacks in verbal communication, he makes up for in being my defender and fighting off anyone who tries to mess with me.  We have this special connection and chemistry. He really knows and understands my heart, too. It’s beautiful. There’s a really special quality to him that I can’t describe.  sometimes he makes me light-headed!  He’s really reliable and his primary love languages are quality time and meaningful touch, which I share.  Sometimes he’s a drip, but he stands by me.  I don’t know. It’s different from other relationships I’ve had, but it’s good. I think we’ll be together for a long time. At least 4 months.

several people around me have seen that i’m in a tight spot.  they always ask “what can i do to help?”  and the answer is often nothing.  but today when my mom asked “what do you need?” i decided to answer, truthfully.  here is my list:

– a full-time secretary.  i’ll sign some HIPPA stuff over to her and let her fight my insurance, call my representatives, the media, schedule me appointments, research Lyme treatments, find me an IV pole.  she’ll send me updates emails twice a day and as i think of new tasks, i’ll forward them to her.  she’ll also get my car fixed & registered in VA and pick up my dry cleaning.  she’ll be like switch and pull up detailed maps of places when i’m lost.
– a stunt double.  i need someone who looks and sounds a lot like me who can go to the doctor’s office to get stuck with needles and do my IV at nights while i go to work and taco night and alumni events and Office parties.
software/hardware from the matrix that takes books and downloads them onto your brain.  i’ll need to do this with the book required for the retreat this weekend.
– a new fall wardrobe that includes lots of cute PICC-line hiding jackets and blazers.  (or black leather unitards–either way)
– a  cat that just appears when i need a cuddly friend.  when i’m finished cuddling, the cat will disappear so i won’t have to deal with fur or a litter box.  maybe he can be a glitch in the matrix.
sleep in a can.  then i’d be like popeye and pop open a can and feel rested.  it probably looks like gruel and tastes like chicken.
– a masseuse [nope, no matrix reference for this one]

so, if you can help me out with any of that, i’d love it.  alternatively, you can come hang out some evening when i’m doing my IV drip.  even with my netflix account, i get bored.
so, if i had all of this stuff, i could just kick bacteria a and be my awesome bionic self. me, rocephin, and carrie ann moss, taking care of b. burgdorferi one uppercut at a time.

this part is real:
girl: “so what do you do in your free time? do you have a job?”
boy: “no, i don’t really have time for a job. i spend too much time drinking beer and playing video games.”

and, just so you men know, this is the girl equivalent:
boy: “So, are you into dating and making out and that kind of stuff?”
girl: “nah, i don’t like doing that because i’m too busy knitting and picking at my pimples.”

encephalopathy, to me, sounds a little like snufalufagus. perhaps that’s the problem with my insurance company: they think i have a mammoth from sesame street, not a chronic disease