My morning bus ride threw me for a loop.
I leave around 6:40 a.m. and catch the bus to the gym before work. Aside from being able to wake up early and with an alarm (no snooze bar ever), I don't consider myself a morning person. I don't talk in the mornings, nor do I want to do much thinking. I just like to go through my routine alone and in silence. This is especially true when I leave early for my workouts. I pop my contacts in, throw my clothes on (which I lay out the night before), and I'm out the door.
This morning was typical. Routine. The usual. So as I step onto the bus, I wave my farecard and scan the back of the bus for seats. As it was pretty crowded for such an early hour, I chose the closest available seat, a middle seat in a block of three. I wasn't paying attention. I dropped my ass on the seat and as I was putting my wallet back in my tote bag, I felt the passenger on my left elbowing me.
It was FFG.
I was expecting this to happen sooner or later. I mean, he lives within two blocks of me. He leaves for work around the same time I head to the gym. We travel in the same direction. But today was the first time we were actually on the same bus. And it was even stranger that I sat down next to him without even noticing.
My whole day was thrown off. This was entirely too surprising a way to start the morning. FFG and I hadn't spoken since we were at our college a few weeks ago. And here we were, 6:45 a.m. and riding the bus together. It was nice, though. Usually I just stare into space and listen to melancholy songs on my iPod. But the headphones came off (both of us) after I sat down. It was a pleasant change to have someone to talk to. And, I won't lie, especially pleasant because of who that someone was.
I had a bad workout. I was off-balance and thinking about him at far too early an hour. Work was slow so I had plenty of time to just think. And it's been on my mind all day.
Here's hoping that tomorrow morning can be just me and my iPod on the bus. I don't need any more pre-dawn surprises.
Wednesday, November 30, 2005
My morning bus ride threw me for a loop.
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
iTunes has taken over the world.
I can't remember the last CD I bought in a store. Thanks to iTunes, I am able to purchase entire albums for just $9.99! Usually, I wouldn't be able to find a deal that great unless I was searching through the value bins at Best Buy. Even better is the ability to purchase just a song or two from an album. The days of the single have returned. I am brought back to my younger days, purchasing cassette singles at Musicland and Sam Goody (specific purchases included UB40's cover of "Can't Help Falling in Love" and Elton John's remake of "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" with Rupaul).
But I can't help but think of how sad it is for future generations to not buy actual albums. There's something to be said for the cohesiveness of an album, the way each track fits within the others - isn't this what the artist intended when putting it together? If he or she just wanted to release a bunch of songs, they would. And the album as an object is made up of so many things: cover art, liner notes, photos. As we started turning away from vinyl, it seemed less important to create covers that said something more than just the band's name. Cassette cases were too small to properly display cover art, but CDs provide a somewhat better space. Now we have the option of purchasing an album on Itunes and downloading a PDF of the album artwork. But what am I going to do with photos of Kanye West with a bear head standing around a library?
I can't help but think that some music was just meant to be heard on vinyl and that it gets changed somehow (diluted, perhaps?) when accessed digitally. When artists made albums during the days of vinyl, they meant for each song to be heard on a record. There were two sides. There was that extra effect I call the "scratchy sound". And the opening track on either side (especially side 1 or A) was an introduction to the rest of the album. I imagine that recording artists or record company execs thought a lot about which song needed to be first.
Nowadays, we hit shuffle on our CD players or iPods. Track placement no longer means anything. The first song probably has little effect on most listeners, while the artists might still consider it an important aspect of the album-making process. Do today's artists think the same way as those of the past? And I wonder what older artists, those who were around in the vinyl days, think of the digital revolution? Does it change how they write or record songs? Or are they thinking still of their old methods?
This all came to mind a few months ago when I purchased The Rolling Stones' Sticky Fingers on iTunes. It opens with "Can't You Hear Me Knocking", a deliciously sexy song which, thankfully, extends past the six minute mark (and would have taken up a good chunk of Side 1). And every time I listen to that song, I think about how much better it would be to hear it on vinyl. I imagine buying the record and placing it on my turntable, needle hovering over the very outer edge. Then, at the precisely right moment, dropping the needle and hearing the guitar intro jump out of my speakers.
So what do you all of think of the iTunes explosion? And if you had to name a favorite album or two, what would they be? (I mean "album" as the cohesive mix of songs, not just an 11-track recording by an artist).
Posted by erin at 11:05 AM
Sunday, November 27, 2005
Friday, November 25, 2005
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
I promised myself that I would never do this. Even when it got really bad, I wouldn't stop to think about why this might be a bad idea.
But here I am, blogging at work.
You see, I recently switched accounts and haven't really been given full, 100% responsibility on my new desk. And I am zero percent responsible for my old desk (which is awesome if you knew what that was like). In a nutshell, I have little to do. Especially since my new boss has been really busy and hasn't had time to sit down and fully transition me. And I'm not going to bother her for anything to do.
So here I am, exercising my creative juices while sipping on my tomato soup. Tomato soup which I burned my finger on carrying it back from the micro to my desk.
I dig this short week. In fact, I have lots of short weeks in my future. No complaints there. Tonight I am skipping my Econ class. Maybe I will work out. Maybe not. I will definitely be packing up my stuff for a few days at home and tuning into Nip/Tuck. Then maybe another early night to bed.
For some reason, I'm feeling really antisocial lately. Not so much at work, but at home. I haven't really wanted to just chit and chat with my roommates. Maybe I just need some time away from them. Hooray for the holiday weekend then.
I cannot believe it's time for Thanksgiving and, shortly after, Christmas. So begins a time of year that annoys me. At least until mid-January. But that is for another day and another time. One thing I absolutely hate about this time of year is the cold. Windy and bitter and snow falling. There is nothing Wonderful about it. Miserable, yes. Delightful, no. And seeing as my search for a new winter coat has been fruitless and aggravating, I am even less excited about the belowe 40 temps in the week's forecast.
I feel as though I should get back to work. Or at least, the appearance of working.
Sunday, November 20, 2005
Thank god for the symphony.
When I woke up around 9:30 this morning, I thought I was in store for another day spent sprawled on the pink couch, restlessly scrolling through the channel options (200 channels and nothing to watch), and eating soup and oatmeal. Despite feeling pretty good and not wanting to be in recovery mode any longer, I didn't really have any other plans.
So it started out this way: couch, oatmeal, and It Happened One Night. At least there was something decent on for a change. About halfway through the movie, I heard my phone vibrating in the distance of my bedroom and waited to check it until the movie ended. It was my mom. She had tickets for a piano concert series at the Chicago Symphony and would I like to join her?
Yes! An excuse to leave the apartmenet! A chance to get outside and breathe fresh air! And I was in the mood to watch something other than reruns of Laguna Beach. It was exactly what I needed. I was ready in 15 minutes and out the door. After we had a quick bite to eat (I was able to actually have a sandwich!), we went to the performance. I really enjoyed it, but it was a shame that I was so doped up. My eyes kept closing and I was having trouble staying alert. It's been happening all weekend, dozing off in front of the TV or the book I'm reading. Apparently a side effect of the Vicodin I'm on.
But it was still nice to go to the symphony (I can't tell you the last time I was there - probably a field trip in elementary school) and to spend time with my mom. Afterwards, we grabbed coffee and some dessert since she had to kill time before her train left. And, as I rode the bus back to my apartment, I thought about how much I love doing these sorts of things with her.
I'm not a family holiday person. I'm not looking forward to Thursday. And it's not because I don't like my family or don't want to see anyone. It's just that these forced occasions seem exactly that: forced. Do we all want to be there? Or is it a sense of obligation bringing us together? For family time, I much prefer just hanging out with my mom or having some great conversation with her. During these holidays, it's uncomfortable (for a variety of reasons), and I just don't want to be there. I'll need to explore this more later, especially as my least favorite time of year arrives (although from the looks of the store decorations and TV commercials, it's already here).
Posted by erin at 10:16 PM
Saturday, November 19, 2005
So I actually feel pretty good. I've been resting on the couch over the past two days, watching WAY too much TV, frozen peas on my cheeks, and medicine when needed.
Aside from some soreness in my left jaw, I'm doing so well. I barely remember much about the surgery. There was a point when I motioned to the oral surgeon and his assistants that I would be up for harvesting my eggs just for the money. I guess it had come up in conversation.
My parents met me afterwards and took me to McDonald's for a chocolate shake (or 2), then back to my apartment. Dad left and Mom stayed until about 10 pm. It was great having her around, even though I was initially not too excited about it. I forgot how great it is when my mom takes care of me. The first couple hours were messy. Since my chin and lips were still somewhat numb, I had difficulty keeping the shake in my mouth and off my shirt. Mom and I watched TV and just spent some time together, which was just comforting. I was even willing to let her stay the night if needed. But by the time night rolled around and my roommates came home from work, I was feeling 100 times better. No puffy cheeks, no more numbness, and I'm doing better with more solid food.
And from all this time laying around my apartment, I'll totally be ready to go to work on Monday.
Romantic, hopeful, and composed. You are the Sonnet. Get it? Composed?
Sonnets want Love and have high ideals about it. They're conscientious people, caring & careful. You yourself have deep convictions, and you devote a lot of thought to romance and what it should be. This will frighten away most potential mates, but that's okay, because you're very choosy with your affections anyway. You'd absolutely refuse to date someone dumber than you, for instance. Lovers who share your idealized perspective, or who are at least willing to totally throw themselves into a relationship, will be very, very happy with you. And you with them. You're already selfless and compassionate, and with the right partner, there's no doubt you can be sensual, even adventurously so. You probably have lots of female friends, and they have a special soft spot for you. Babies do, too, at the tippy-top of their baby skulls.
Not sure about that baby part though.
Check it out for yourself.
Posted by erin at 5:45 PM
Thursday, November 17, 2005
So the wisdom teeth come out in 13 hours. I am not really nervous about the surgery, just the after effects. And the anesthesia. I've never been put under before. But, according my to old boss, it's not much different than getting wasted and not remembering being at the bar. So I'll be right at home.
Looking forward to a weekend of doing nothing: sleeping in my fabulous bed, watching movies, and not spending money at the bar.
If anyone has any good recovery advice, please let me know.
Posted by erin at 7:04 PM
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
I'm not too html savvy so I do the basics just to get by on this blog. However, I received any email from one of my readers who posed a question I also had.
So anyone who knows how to do this, let us know!
How can the blogger see who has viewed their site? Or any other tricks like that?
Posted by erin at 3:36 PM
Sunday, November 13, 2005
If you asked me Friday morning, I would have told you that no productive conversation with Flip Flop Guy would happen this weekend.
I would have been wrong.
This past weekend was my alma mater's big football game. I went back last year and, seeing as I probably won't be back for quite awhile, decided to take the trip again this year. Two of my close friends were going, so we would be able to stick it out together. Flip Flop Guy was also coming and I was prepared for awkwardness or some angry drunk moments. I got both (but not as bad as it could have been).
I'll try and make a long, probably uninteresting story short. I wanted answers. Since I started writing this blog, I've wanted answers. But I'm too chicken to bring it up (unless I'm drunk - keep reading) and he feels weird talking about it (keep reading). Friday night everything was cool at the bar. Again, his friends asked what was going on between us. I'm getting the idea that he doesn't talk much about his relationships with them; they seem to know nothing. Or this is some weird guy thing where they like to ask the other half what's going on. I don't get it. When they ask, I just shrug my shoulders. Because that's really all I know.
At some point in the evening, rather late actually, I finally tell him that I'm frustrated. I want to know what's going on. And I start trying to explain things in my illogical drunken ramblings so I am making no sense. And he has no idea what I'm talking about. Apparently, we were arguing or I was angry, but I don't really know what I said. Luckily, he didn't recall much other than being angry at me (and not knowing why). When I came back to the hotel room, I guess I told my friend Amy that FFG and I had gotten into a fight. I was a little nervous to see him at the game.
When I did see him on Saturday, I made every effort not to look his way or draw attention to myself. I've made it a point to always make him approach me. Especially if the situation is potentially awkward. Well, he came over to talk to Leslie and, because I was standing about 2 people away from them, I could overhear a little of what they were saying. And I kept hearing the word "her". Their conversation was about me.
He then made his way over to me, cautiously, as if he didn't know what he was getting himself into by talking to me. I guess I can be pretty scary when I'm mad because he's not the only guy to act this way. He tells me he doesn't really remember what happened in our conversation, other than feeling angry after he walked me to my hotel. We hugged. And it was one of those really good, long squeezes.
But Leslie came over and I could tell that she needed him to tell me something. He pulled me away from everyone else and finally told me the truth. The girl he was dating before is out of the country. They decided not to be together while she is gone. They can see other people, but are considering getting back together when she returns (TBD - no set date). She is currently seeing someone, but he is not anxious to jump into a relationship because of the circumstances. I am the closest thing he has to a relationship. He has such a good time when he's with me that he forgets about all of this. Then, when I'm not there, he thinks that he should tell me.
And I told him that I needed to hear that, because I was confused. And I needed to know these things. And as I keep thinking about it and about him, I realize how much I like FFG and I can't just shove him to the side and forget about him.
So now what?
p.s. I also just realized that I might have left my new sweater in the hotel room. So annoyed.
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
I am a big believer in horoscopes. Not that I cling to each and every word, or even read them on a regular basis. It's just that when I do read them, I can usually fit the prophetic four or five sentences easily into my life. Whenever I am thinking on something or I have a pressing issue, reading my horoscope often encourages me to trust my instincts. It tells me that yes, I should do or say whatever I've been thinking....Or I should forget about that person who's name begins with L.....Or I should take some time to think about my accomplishments so others will take notice.
I might not believe that my horoscope will come true, but I like to use it as a blueprint.
That said, today I read that if I am single (yes), I should tell the person I am interested in how I feel. I have been thinking about that a lot.
Yesterday my coworker Zach and I had a conversation about this. About how it's better for me to tell Flip Flop guy that I care about what's going on with us, whatever that may be. I need to stop pretending that it's no big deal because I'm only going to screw myself in the long run.
So when I read my horoscope this afternoon, it only reinforced what I've known to be true for a week now. I need to tell him. I need to tell him that I'm not okay with not understanding what is between us. That I want to know what he is thinking so I don't have to speculate anymore. That I am interested and, although I don't know exactly what I want, I want something between us. That if something isn't possible, then I want nothing at all.
But I am a chicken. I get scared to say a word and I put it off and put it off until it's too late. And this weekend I know nothing will get accomplished.
Posted by erin at 8:38 PM
Saturday, November 05, 2005
What a bummer. I totally wanted to go out tonight and I have ended up on my couch, watching When Harry Met Sally. I had been watching the What's Happening!! marathon and, before that, The Cosby Show on DVD. However, I shouldn't be too bummed; I can hear the thunder outside and am probably better off staying in tonight.
I'm trying to figure out when I fell in love with this movie. When did it become one of my standbys, the movie I turn to when I just need something to watch? Peering up at our apartment's DVD collection, I realize that the whole love/romance section is mine with only a few exceptions (I organized our DVDs in a genre sort of way. It's not clear at first how I've done this). From Bridget Jones's Diary to WHMS, it's all mine. This includes Annie Hall, Garden State, Love Actually, and Sleepless in Seattle. When I bought the latter this past summer, my roommate mused that it was an "Erin kind of movie". I was shocked. When did I become a Meg Ryan/Romantic Comedy girl?
But I see where she was coming from. I wish I could live in a Woody Allen film. I have this idealized view of New York, complete with walking down the street with a soundtrack of Billie Holiday and Dean Martin. I imagine Harry Connick Jr filling in the gaps while crossing through Central Park or standing in line at the movies while overhearing obnoxious conversations about Marshall McLuhan. So I guess this is where it comes from, seeing me as the kind of girl whose romantic fantasies revolve around Manhattan, martinis, and big band music. It's sad.
Thursday, November 03, 2005
I came across this on two sites today and thought I'd give it a shot, see how average I am.....
Eats peanut butter at least once a week.
At least once a day? This amazing food/condiment/snack/topping is part of the title of my blog. I have a slight addiction and enjoy peanut butter in its many forms.
Prefers smooth peanut butter over chunky.
Yes. Although sometimes a mixing of the two really adds something to a straight PB sandwich.
Can name all Three Stooges.
Yep - although I can't stand em.
Lives within a 20-minute drive of a Wal-Mart.
I don't drive. Not sure where the closest Wal-Mart is. I hate Wal-Mart. After relying on the Super-sized version in college, I am glad that I no longer need to set foot in this chain on a routine basis.
Eats at McDonaldÂs at least once a year.
Once a year is my limit. I think I've actually been twice this year.
Takes a shower for approximately 10.4 minutes a day.
That's probably about right on. Maybe longer if I can. I love showering.
Never sings in the shower.
Lives in a house, not an apartment or condominium.
I grew up in a house, but am apartment living now.
Has a home valued between $100,000 and $300,000.
Has fired a gun.
At summer camp. Does that count?
Is between 5 feet and 6 feet tall.
Weighs 135 to 205 pounds.
I'm on the low end of that one.
Is between the ages of 18 and 53.
And low end of this one too.
Believes gambling is an acceptable entertainment option.
It's acceptable, just not for me. I am not a gambler. Don't like taking risks if I don't have to.
Grew up within 50 miles of current home.
South Side to North Side.....and within 50 miles.
Posted by erin at 9:44 PM