Tuesday, November 30, 2004
You know you've made it when someone is selling your product on eBay. Gee whiz.

Monday, November 29, 2004
So how was your Thanksgiving? Mine was kinda nice, actually. I managed to avoid snow, traffic, and general annoyances on the drives to and from New York, I got some good shopping done, and yes, I saw my family and that was good too. Oh, and there was turkey and all the usual stuff that goes along with that.

What was also good was my decision to come back on Saturday instead of Sunday. That left me all day yesterday to do nothing. I slept late, hung around, did some reading, and relaxed. I definitely need to do that more often.

I turn 30 in a week from tomorrow. I'm feeling better about it.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004
After some deliberation, I have decided to head back to the R.C. (that's Rockland County, dog, in New York) for Thanksgiving with the family. Won't grandma be happy! Back after the much-fabled travel. Here we come.

Oh, and my G5 won't start up. This blows!

Monday, November 22, 2004
I normally go to the grocery store in the afternoon, but on Saturday, I got up early and was there by nine in the morning. I think that's my favorite time to go. The store isn't crowded, and everything has been freshly restocked. The apple bin is full of shiny apples that haven't been picked over yet, everything that's on sale is still there, the bakery bread is still warm, and there's room to get up close to the cans of soup and compare sodium levels. Try doing that on a Saturday afternoon.

There are no kids running around the cereal aisle or crying in the freezer section. In fact, I'm the youngest person in the store by at least 30 years! I'm also the fastest, so if an old lady and I both have our eyes on the same pineapple -- well, we all know who's taking it home. But I help her get the second best one, because she can't reach that far. The tables by the coffee counter are full of old men, and the smell of Old Spice hangs over the entire corner.

On a completely different topic, my new favorite song: Fit But You Know It by The Streets. They're English. It's good, yeah?

Wednesday, November 17, 2004
Okay, I'm seriously beginning to think that there's a bat conspiracy against me. Last night, at some cruel hour, I heard at least one and as many as three bats in the wall next to my head. They were screeching, and I tried to smack the wall, but it's an exterior wall, and it's made of plaster, and it's up against brick, so it didn't knock so well. I went back to sleep, but they kept screeching.

Or did they? Here's what I'm not sure about: was this a dream? Possibly prompted by the bat incident from earlier in the evening? I remembered it all so clearly, but then again, I sometimes remember dreams really well. And, I've never actually had bats in the walls in this house, though I found a dead one in a bucket back in July, and the guy upstairs has had a few in the past year, so I'm not sure. I still think they're out to get me, whether it's for real or in my dreams, like Groundkeeper Willie in that weird episode of The Simpsons.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004
You know how some people are really lucky, or prone to injury, or keep getting in car wrecks, or whatever? I think I am one of those people who will always be plagued by bats. I killed another one tonight! This one wasn't in my house, but rather was crawling around on my porch at around 6:30 tonight. I think it had a broken wing, and it was screeching like crazy and bearing its teeth. I was a little freaked out, but then decided to put the thing out of its misery and kill it with a broom. Then I swept it off the porch and onto the concrete, and I'm sure one of the neighborhood cats will have a nice late-night snack. And that probably would have happened anyway, since it wasn't able to fly. Really, I'd like to be rid of these bats, but I know there will be another one. Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow. But one day. Gross.

Another gym annoyance: People who leave their kids alone in the Cybex room. Their germy kids climb all over that equipment like it's a freakin' playground. The sign specifically says no kids under junior high school age without adult supervision, but I guess no one sees it or cares. I just tell the kids to get out of my way, without being too mean, but I swear, one of them is gonna get seriously injured one of these days.

Good gym news? My neighbor has started working out too, and usually at the same time as me. I finally have a workout buddy!

Monday, November 15, 2004
I ate like an entire baguette over the past 24 hours, but it was kind of chewy, and I think I pulled a muscle in my jaw. I'm so stupid.

Friday, November 12, 2004
The guy who lives across the street from me is a little weird in a way that's hard to explain. He's kind of a close talker, and while he's not a bad guy, I just get a weird vibe from him. He frequently has people coming over or stopping by: his professor friends, maybe some students, his theatre people, his ex-wife. And lately, I've noticed that almost all of these people have overpriced European cars, and almost all of these cars have cryptic vanity plates. I'd say what some of them are, but they're all so cryptic that I can't even remember what they are, though you know that they're intentional and not just some random assignment of letters and numbers. Anyway, maybe this is why I think he's werid.

The girls next door to me are interesting too. There are four of them, and they keep to themselves, and they're much better than the assholes with the dog who used to live next door. (Remember the dog? I hated that dog!) Anyway, all four of them have cars, and their driveway is big enough to hold at least four cars, but what happens is that the two who get home first take the two spots closest to the sidewalk, so that the whole back of the driveway is empty and no other cars can pull in. I'm not sure if this is their plan, so no one ever has to move her car, but I've seen more than one of them look pissed when she can't park in the driveway. But they never make a big scene, and they don't have a loud dog, so I'm cool with them.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004
My latest gym annoyance: People who sit on the weight machines like they're chairs but don't actually lift anything. You know what I'm talking about. They just sit there! I'm making my way around the circuit, trying to get all my reps in, and they're sitting on the one machine I need to use before I head home like it's a barcalounger and they're all alone. Earlier at the gym, this woman was on the thigh adduction machine for what must have been 20 minutes. And she just sat there and did nothing, and I wanted to go up to her and say listen, lady, your thighs aren't gonna get any smaller if you just sit there. But of course, I didn't, and I think she sensed my direction, because she got up right before I wanted to use the machine. And of course, she didn't clean it off, though she probably didn't feel like she had to, because she didn't actually do anything on it besides use it as a chair, and you don't clean off chairs when you stand up from them. I don't know why these people do this. Maybe they're deluding themselves into thinking that they don't actually have to lift any weights, they just need to sit very close to some.

On the good side, the pervy staring men who used to exercise at my Y seem to have disappeared! So that's a plus.

Tuesday, November 9, 2004
It's cold. I am cold.

Monday, November 8, 2004
To break the spirit of yesterday's musings, here are five good things about turning 30:

  1. My car insurance will be less expensive.
  2. Free happy birthday White Russian at the dive bar downtown.
  3. Most of my friends are already there or way past it, so I should probably catch up already.
  4. Next time I get carded when I order a drink, I can fire back a Dave Chapelle-ish "I'm thirty, bee-otch."
  5. I have ten whole years until 40.
(Whew! That wasn't easy!)

Sunday, November 7, 2004
I've been feeling a little frazzled these past few days. Maybe it's just regular work-related stress, or maybe it's PMS, but in the past hour or so, I thought of something else it might be. It's this: in one month from today, I turn 30. And I think it's starting to get to me.

This is maybe a little surprising to me, because I thought I'd take it well. And I have no reason not to take it well: I'm healthy, I'm employed, I have good friends and someone who loves me, and I feel like I've accomplished more than a few things so far. Another year should mean nothing but more opportunity and more possibility.

But 30! It scares me a little. I think it's because when I turned 20, I knew that I had nothing but potential. I was still in college, and while college was pretty good, I knew that my best years were still ahead of me. I wanted to make my 20s the time when I fulfilled that potential. Unfortunately, I never thought beyond that -- which maybe isn't all that uncommon: when you're 20, 35 seems like a long, long way off. Now, my 20s are about over, and I don't have a mental map of where I'm going next. And I think this is what's bothering me.

I don't have a solution, either. Sure, I could go out and drink and party every night in an effort to give my 20s one last hurrah, but that's not really my style. I can't drink like I used to, and I'd be drinking alone, since all of my friends either have to get up early for work or have to spend their evenings helping their kids with homework. And honestly, I like my quiet time. I remember an episode of "Friends" (yeah, I know, but stay with me on this) from maybe seven or eight years ago where the six of them were talking about not being able to party like they used to, and one of them said that all they wanted was a clean apartment, a little peace and quiet, and to be able to go to bed at a reasonable hour. And you know, that about sums up what I want too.

Ultimately, you're only as old as you feel, and I don't feel old. And, I sure as hell don't look old; just a few weeks ago I was mistaken for a high school student -- a high school student! But, like it or not, my years of potential are over, and I'm not sure what to do about it.

More on this, I'm sure, as the month progresses.

Thursday, November 4, 2004
I've let a few days go by, but it's all because I've been spending all of my online time at Flickr making a site for my photos. I think this site is really cool because, unlike sites like Ofoto, which put your shots into themed albums, Flickr just lets you show off your good snaps to anyone, and it lets you organize them however you want. I also like it because I take a lot of pictures, and while I'm no professional photographer, I think some of them are kind of nice. But, they're just on my harddrive, and hardly anyone sees them. Maybe I'm vain, or need attention, or whatever, but I really feel the need to have an audience for any creative endeavor. Without an audience, I lose interest. (This is a big part of why I started this site: I wasn't going to write if I didn't have a reader or two.) So, Flickr gives me the hope that maybe someone is looking at my work. Which is nice. And people have posted some really excellent photos. Yeah, there are a lot of silly snapshots, but there's some really good stuff there too.

If you haven't signed up for Flickr, a basic account is free, and they don't seem to bug you via email, and you can put up some of your own shots and leave comments on other people's.

Monday, November 1, 2004
A view from the top. The trip home to New York went well for many reasons, but one of the best things we did was go to the top of the Empire State Building. I had never been up to the top (we went to the World Trade Center instead), and had always kind of wanted to go. So, I ignored my fears of heights and crowds and elevators and crowded elevators and went up to the observation deck on the 86th floor. The sign at the building entrance said that visibility was only five to ten miles, but it was still a spectacular view. The observation deck doesn't really have that magical feel to it, like it does in movies (lots of tourists will do that, I suppose), but it was still pretty amazing. The World Trade Center was a better observation deck, but the Empire State Building is a close second, and unfortunately, it's all we have. I usually try to avoid tourist traps at home, but I would highly recommend a visit.

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