Neighbors

Another One Bites the Dust

The year is almost up, and that means that once again, it is time! Time for Re-cap Mania! Everyone will be recapping! From Keith Olbermann to Joel McHale to Barbara Walters to Hulk Hogan!

Here is my recapathon, as I did last year, stolen from my pal Librarisaurus Rex. As usual, I am encouraging you to steal it, make it your own, and then let me know so I can come peep your’n.

1. What did you do in 2008 that you’d never done before?

As you know, I think that the true stuff of life is made from the small stuff, so let me start this one by saying this. I had the most spectacular, funkariffic slam dunk fall, while rollerskating. I have had many a spectacular fall in my day, but oddly enough, never when rollerskating. I made up for that lack like crazy this year, all with one fall. Oh how I wish I had footage to share with you. It was like a Nascar crash, except without a car. I think there may have been flames and everything. I also spent an inordinate amount of time on Facebook. And I now have a friend who has pulled a plane around, and really, how many people can say that?

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Well since I didn’t make any I technically didn’t fail at my new year’s resolutions. I kept all zero of them. Also, I am resolving to not make any again this year. See how I set myself up to succeed?

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Um, I don’t think so. I’m feeling all kinds of anxiety about saying that. If you gave birth this year, and I am forgetting it right now, I am so sorry. This is just the sort of faux pas that would be typical for me. You had a baby? Oops! I hadn’t noticed! Pass the Ginkgo!

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Yes, a dear friend of mine. It’s weird to talk about it on a blog, so that’s all I’m going to say about that.

5. What countries did you visit?
You know this question always chaps my ass a little every year. I stayed in America, ok? My meager travel funds are allocated for me to go visit my parents as much as I possibly can. LAY OFF.

6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?
Oh, I don’t know. What did I lack in 2008? I can’t think of anything significant. A dishwasher would be nice. Oh, I know. A winning lottery ticket. Sign me up for one of those.

7. What dates from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory?
Many fine things happened in twos this year. Two fine couples and friends of mine got all hitched up had dang fine hootenannies to celebrate. I went to two especially nice birthday parties for my wee friends who turned one year old each. My two relatives from New Zealand came to visit me, which was tres exciting. It was the year of number 2. Wait, that doesn’t sound right.

Oh, and November 4 was kind of big. You know, if you’re into that sort of thing.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Staving off loneliness via my cocoon of friends and family that love me.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Failing is all about goal-setting, and goal-setting is not my strong suit. I failed to post 30 times in November for NaBloPoMo. Good enough answer? I also entered into a coat-buying contest with BioGirl and my other friend Borgsmith, which I failed miserably because I didn’t even complete the contest. But really, who enters into a contest about buying a coat with their friends? I deserve to fail, just for doing that.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
No, I made it through unharmed for another year, despite rollerskating crashes.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Supplies for a brand new roof. I keep telling you that a brand new roof is more exciting than it sounds. Perhaps some day you’ll believe me.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
My friends Neighbor H and Lil’ R had all sorts of firsts this year. They are walking around on their own, and communicating with words and charades, and eating more and more grown up foods. These two are little one-year-olds, by the way. In case you were confused.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Two words. Prop 8.

14. Where did most of your money go?
To this question I offer you another question. What year will it be when the answer to this annual question is NOT “mortgage?”

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
So, I don’t know if you heard, but I have this friend named BioGirl. I’m sure I must have mentioned her at some point, but in case you missed it, we are two peas in a pod. And for the past five years she up and left me to go get her a fair piece of book learning. This year was the year she finished all that education nonsense and moved back home where she belongs. The excitement on this was OFF THE CHAIN, yo.

16. What song will always remind you of 2008?
You Are Free, by Mates of State. I think I listened to that song all year non-stop. Also, Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough by Michael Jackson. I went to a lot of parties with dancing this year, and that song was always on the playlist.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? Happier.
b) thinner or fatter? About the same, I guess. I don’t know.
c) richer or poorer? A tad better off than last year. Baby steps, you know.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Seeing my moms and pops.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Lying awake at night.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
I spent it with a whole lot of Nordic Boy, a whole lot of relaxation, a whole lot of snow, and it was a whole lot of awesome.

21 is missing. Time to take a breather…

22. Did you fall in love in 2008?
Yep, over and over and over again, all with the same dude, which is rather lucky when you think about it.

23. How many one-night stands?
None, but I did have a 365-night stand. Oh baby.

24. What was your favorite TV program?
Usually I get my news from newspapers and the interwebs and NPR, but this year I watched a ton of news on tv. BBC news and CNN news, mostly. I wouldn’t call that my “favorite” though, but it was oft-watched tv. My favorite program, if I am going to be dead honest with you, was So You Think You Can Dance. Don’t you judge me.

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Hatred levels constant, sir.

26. What was the best book you read?
This question was so not written for a librarian. But, if pressed, I will list the following…Last Night at the Lobster, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, Pete and Pickles, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Blackstock’s Collections: The Drawings of an Artistic Savant, Out of Place…ok, stopping the list now.

27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
I got into Helio Sequence more this year. I am behind the times, I know this.

28. What did you want and get?
Unconditional love.

29. What did you want and not get?
Even more time with the peeps.

30. What was your favorite film of this year?
I re-watched a bunch of William Holden movies, and they were delicious.

31. What did you do on your birthday?
BioGirl and Nordic Boy threw me a birthday party! There were cupcakes, and billiards, and dressed up fancy guests and EVERYTHING. It was a grand affair.

32.What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
I wished that I could have seen my friends Alli and Map this year. Our annual trip didn’t happen and I missed them like crazy.

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?
To quote Blair Waldorf of Gossip Girl: “tights are not pants!”

34. What kept you sane?
A hearty diet of laughing, silly dances, and talking nonsense.

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
I have had an ongoing girl crush on Kate Winslet since Heavenly Creatures in the early 90s, and she was everywhere this year, yes? Hi Kate! Call me!

36. What political issue stirred you the most?
Did you hear about a little vote we had here? For President? No? I’m not surprised, it wasn’t covered much in the media.

37. Who did you miss?
A lot of people. Too many. I hate this question.

38. Who was the best new person you met?
I re-met a lot of very cool people this year (thanks, Facebook!). “Reunited and it’s understood! Reunited and it feels so good!” …Sorry, just felt the need to sing a little Peaches and Herb there. Also! My friend Borgsmith (even though he challenges me to coat buying contests that I can’t win).

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008:
Keep looking for a stylist until you find The One.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
I’m a living sunset
Lightning in my bones
Push me to the edge
But my will is stone

Fools will be fools
And wise will be wise
But I will look this world
Straight in the eyes -Ben Harper

Final Thoughts:
I feel like I have to say something profound. That’s kind of a lot of pressure. Listen, let’s just say that 2008 was a year full of things I’d never thought I would see, both good and bad, and things that I know to be true holding fast. I thank my lucky charms (purple horseshoes and all) for what I’ve cobbled together. 2009 is on deck! Let’s knock it out of the park.

I’m out,
Librarian Girl

Giving it a whirl

My friend Neighbor J has these crazy ass neighbors.

Wait, that sounds like I’m talking about myself. Because if I call her Neighbor J, then that would mean I was her neighbor, right? But nope, sadly in this case, I am not talking about myself. Because Neighbor J is called Neighbor J because we used to be neighbors, and then we both moved, and so now it’s more like she is a Neighbor Emeritus. A neighbor in the existential sense, like Mr. Rogers and his tv neighbors. She now has new actual geographic neighbors, and they are a bit highstrung. One example of this is that they have screaming fights with each other (the neighbors have it amongst themselves, not with Neighbor J. God can I convolute a story or what?). And one of the things they call each other when they fight is “YA FRICKIN’ NUTJOB!”

I love this phrase. Ya frickin’ nutjob is something that I wish I could use more often. Her neighbors use it with complete abandon and although I do not envy the fact that they are having throw downs like that, I do enjoy saying that phrase.

So…anyway. You all talked me into something again. And this guarantees I will be saying this, about myself, at least once a day for the next 30 days:

“YA FRICKIN’ NUTJOB.”

I’m out,
Librarian Girl

Ahead of his time

You know what’s weird? Nordic Boy has no idea how old anyone is. And I mean, ANYONE. Neighbor J’s daughter? She just turned one this summer. When we were getting ready to go to her party, Nordic Boy is all…”how old is she turning again?” ONE. She is turning ONE. This is her first birthday; we have never celebrated her birthday ever before, ergo…she is ONE. How hard is that?

The other thing about this is he always inflates birthdays, sometimes by a year, and sometimes by several years. In his mind, people are always older than they actually are. Why this is I can’t figure out.

The morning of my birthday, as I am sleeping:
Him: Wake up! It’s your birthday! Happy birthday!
Me: Aww, thanks!
Him: So, birthday lady, how does it feel to be THIRTY SEVEN?
(Note to you all out there…I am not 37.)
Me: WHAT? How long was I asleep? What am I, Rip Van Winkle? How am I thirty seven?
Him: Wait…you’re not?
Me: No!!!
Him: But…I thought you were turning the same age as I am.
Me: Dude. YOU’RE NOT THIRTY SEVEN EITHER.

No idea how old I am. Or how old he is. I know that this is common (I have brought it up with y’all before and you schooled me on the number of folks that don’t know how old you are out there and I get it, it’s a lot of you. But still. I think it’s weird.)

Sheesh.

In other birthday news. How frickin’ cute is THIS? (Thanks Pop Quiz Kid, for finding this).


Little kids celebrate Gandhi’s birthday in India.

I’m out,
Librarian Girl

Photos Galore

“Cheddar Cheeses and Ocean Breezes…” –Caption of a flyer advertising the Oregon Coast, which does indeed offer up the heady mixture of Pacific Ocean waves and dairy farms.

Some photos.


Loading up the car in the city with all the essentials. (Beachy clothes, lots of tunes, and Smart Puffs).

After lunching in Portland, we stop off at the Tillamook Dairy…

where you can watch the cheese being made as if on Mister Rogers’ Picture Picture.

And enjoy fresh ice cream in an extremely scenic parking lot.

Add in some random pit stops where we wander around small towns on the way…

which totally pays off when we find something called “Dave’s Beaver Service.”

and we all run over to it to take pictures and giggle in a very mature way and then postulate theories on what services exactly Dave would be able to provide, especially with that big squeegee on the sign there.

Arrive with trepidation at the beach house that I was totally responsible for reserving and then breathe a sigh of relief when it isn’t a shithole that my friends will kick my ass for getting…

And when you step outside the door, it looks batshit beautiful.

And once you walk over the dune, you just want to run around all Chariots of Fire style.

And there’s a big effing rock in the ocean just giving you the finger each morning.

Here’s Neighbor B (still a bit sleep deprived), Baby Neighbor (the sleep depriverer), and that’s BioGirl on the side there, who by the looks of it, has been lasagna deprived.

While BioGirl and Neighbor J knitted, read and laptopped…

Nordic Boy and I spent our time doing much more important things…

We played a lot of pool too.

We also were outside a bunch, where we saw things like this come right out of the misty sea like a Decemberists song.

During low tide, the intertidals made us all walk with our heads to the ground…

where things are super sparkly…

and–what a coincidence!- we have a marine biologist in our midst to tell us what the hell we are looking at.

Anemones!

Starfish!

Mussel mania!

To be continued…

I’m out,
Librarian Girl

turn and face the strange

Hmmm, there’s something different around here. Have I packed on a couple extra pounds? Is it a new outfit? Have I started using the gradual coloring of Just for Men products? What ever could it be?

Oh, my yes. It’s a new look for this little blog of mine, which I am gonna let shine. How nice of you to notice.

You know what I did, after realizing that I wanted a little blog lift? Did I get off my Hillary Duff and do something about it? Brainstorm, make something, start with the re-designing? No I did not. What I did do was whine just a tad about how I wanted my blog to be more a reflection of me, but that I didn’t actually want to DO anything about it, and my whining reached the ears of my two lovely and talented friends. I kind of knew this would happen, as all of my friends are lovely and talented, and helpful to boot, and so when talents are needed, I send out the whiny Bat-signal and they come to my rescue.

First of all, Neighbor J mentioned while we were hanging out last weekend that she just might like to design me a header. This made me really ecstatic cuz in my opinion there ain’t nobody more genius at illustration and graphic skeelz than Neighbor J, whether I know them personally or not. And, within 24 hours (and that is saying something because she has her own actual paying graphic design to be doing with deadlines and stuff plus oh yeah she is taking care of a teeny tiny cute as a button baby girl so um, she’s kind of busy) she had whipped up that hunk of deliciousness up there. And it is so awesome, because it is SO ME, and only someone who knows me the way she does could have come up with such a thing.

Then, my whining beacon reached the ears of my friend Josh over at Berg with Fries. He also had contacted me right away after hearing of my blah-ness and offered to help. So he (within an hour) did the rest for me. He took time, out of his day being the co-boss-man of the most awesome and super Boys from Jupiter (you should totally hire them for all your design needs) to help me out. Because he is a superstar like that.

I realize that what this whole post is revealing to you is that my friends are Class A ridiculous great people who help their friends out no matter how annoying they are and that I am a Class A lazy effer who relies on said great people. But I have to call it what it is. They are awesome and I am lazy. And as you can tell from the beauteousness of this blog, this set up TOTALLY WORKS FOR ME.

Oh, and also? I have another talented and lovely pal, Neighbor B (hubby of Neighbor J) who has started his very own tech blog where he outlines tech DIY type goodness. I will be the first to admit to you that it is a blog that I have very little understanding of, as it goes way over my head with the smartyness, but if you are a tech type and a DIY type, Neighbor B is your type of peeps and you should go read his blog. He’s good people, and way brainy.

My friends rock, dude.
I’m out,
Librarian Girl

Prairie On My Mind

I have a secret arsenal of knowledge, and it is this. Little House on the Prairie. The tv show, not the books. Have I ever outed this about myself on this here blog before? But there. I said it. I am not ashamed!

Chances are, if you are around my age, you may have a part of your brain that is tapped into Little House too. It was a pretty popular show for kiddies back in the day. Not only that, there was a wealth of syndication where the show was played during afterschool hours so in the 80s, if you were watching after school tv, you kind of had to intentionally steer yourself away from that show in order to miss it.

I don’t know what it is about certain things that are pop culture-ish, but they stick in my head in a most alarming way. I can quote Little House on the Prairie, chapter and verse. Why can’t I have this ability when it comes to scientific and historic events, or even when it comes to remembering my grocery list? For everything else in life, I have to write things down, make lists, look things up. But for certain movies, tv shows, music…it’s all right there. RIGHT THERE.

Yesterday, my friend Map sent me an email wherein she explained that she stumbled across a rerun of the Little House movie “The Last Farewell.” She didn’t even have to go on to explain what that was. She knows that I would know that that was the final episode, where the residents of Walnut Grove blow up their town. (I am not kidding. They end the series by blowing up their own town! TELL ME that isn’t awesome). Not only that, she called it “The Last Goodbye” and I knew right away that she meant “The Last Farewell.” Sick, right?

Not only that, she emailed me a ton of questions about the show, because, you know, Little House can be kind of fucked up and confusing for the uninitiated. Things like logic and making sense don’t sometimes happen on that show. She must have emailed me like fifteen or twenty questions. And I just ripped off all the answers. Like THAT. I kind of spook myself out when I do shit like that, you know?

My relationship with Little House on the Prairie may seem odd to those who knew me growing up and who know me now. I wasn’t raised in a farming community, nor do I know anything about rural life in general. I grew up in a factory town, with all the gritty urban ambience of smokestacks and steel. My favorite shows as a child were Fat Albert and Good Times, and I just couldn’t relate to Walton’s Mountain or the Dukes of Hazzard. None of my friends watched those kinds of shows, and neither did I.

But then, when I was a kid, LHOTP (oh yes! I acronymmed it!) reruns started playing every day after school. I remember my mom started watching them because there were things on that show that, oddly enough, reminded her of her childhood. She grew up on a small island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, and her family used things like hurricane oil lamps and outhouses when she was a child. “Look,” she would tell me excitedly during the episode “Sylvia,” where Albert apprentices as a blacksmith. “That’s the kind of metal work your grandad used to do.” “Uh-huh,” I would reply absently, too freaked out by the masked mystery man to pay attention to what she was saying. (If you have any idea what I am talking about with that episode, we could SO be bffs).

My mom’s love affair with Little House was short-lived. After a few weeks of watching it day after day, my progressive, lefty mom started to grumble. “That Mrs. Oleson is just a reflection of why patriarchy is afraid of strong women who have their own money,” she would rail. No response from me, as I was glued to the screen. “That Hester Sue couldn’t be any more Aunt Jemima-ish if they tried. Just sickening!” she would say.

It was too late, Mom. I was hooked. I can’t even tell you exactly what it was that got me. I just couldn’t stop watching, even as I saw every episode and saw them all over again. I watched until my burgeoning adolescent schedule pulled me away from my after-school Walnut Grove visits.

Flash forward twenty years. I had recently moved into a new duplex apartment, which was shared on the other side by Neighbor J. She and I were instantaneously friends as we had so many things in common. We talked incessantly about any topic of interest, and it was only a short time before she mentioned Little House.

“That so-and-so works so hard, it’s like he’s Pa Ingalls!” was the way it started.
Me: “What did you say?”
Her: “Oh, nothing. It’s just that on that show Little House on the Prairie, there were always these episodes where Pa works so hard that he hurts himself. If you watched that show…”
Me: Say no more. I haven’t seen that show in years, but I have this uncanny ability of remembering them all.
Her: You’re kidding.
Me: Nope. I’ll prove it. Ol’ Dan Tucker was a fine old man…
Her: …washed his face in a frying pan…

From that day forward, Neighbor J and I fed off of each other in our love for Little House. It was scary, the things we remembered. We had, it seemed, whole sections of our brains that were solely meant to store LHOTP facts and memories.

Now you guys know me and my friends by now. We are not calico-wearing girlies. We do not harken back to prairie times, we do not eat stew. We are bonafide cutting edge ladies. We eat sushi, we like Jon Stewart, we read Erdrich more than we ever read Wilder. We would rather wear Chanel No. 5 than Lemon Verbena. And yet.

Yet, we have this long-standing, inexplicable, undeniable adoration for Laura, Mary, Nellie, and all the rest (ok, except for Nancy). It’s a closeted love that yearns to be free. We have often talked about the fact that there HAS to, there just HAS to be other people our age, in our demographic, who grew up with Walnut Grove and who see it as we do. We know it’s cheesy. We know that Pa will well up with emotion in almost every episode. We know that Carrie seems stuck at age three for ten years straight. We know all of this. But we love them anyway. And we have an inkling that there are more like us out there.

Right?

Anyone?

I’m out,
Librarian Girl

On Becoming Fontastic

Hi Pop Culture Librarian readers. Neighbor J here, reporting for Bloggysitting duty. I feel honored to be a guest blogger for Librarian Girl. She plays it cool, but you guys agree with me that her writing rocks hard core, so I’ve got some big bad blog shoes to fill. Outside the blogoshpere, Librarian Girl’s feet are much smaller than mine, but I’ve had fantasies about literally being able to fill her shoes. She’s got some awesome taste in footwear, that girl. We share a love of shoes, and shopping for the clothes to go with them. There are a few marathon shopping sprees in our past that should go down in some kind of Shoppers-Book-of-World-Records. We don’t get to do it too often, but shopping with LG is one of my favorite things. Not surprisingly, we also share a love of pop culture. We can wax poetic about about how The Waltons compares to Little House, and the historical discrepancies between these two shows and our other favorite, Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman. And lately, as Librarian Girl and Nordic boy have been searching for the perfect set of house numbers for the new mailbox Nordic Boy hand crafted, we’ve discovered another shared passion: fonts. Typefaces if you’re nasty.

Just a few years ago, if you said “typography” to me I’d crinkle up my nose at you, roll my eyes, and dry-heave like I was choking on a giant furball made of yak hair. I was in design school and typography was being crammed down my throat, and I was gagging on it big time.

In school the scriptures of Typography came in the form of a book called “The Elements of Typographic Style” by Robert Bringhurst. Our instructor would quote from Bringhurst at every chance she got. And Bringhurst himself writes like some kind of zealous poet-preacher. In a fashion that took me straight back to catechism we had to memorize Bringhurst stanzas like this: “Allow the [type]face to speak in its natural idiom.” Cringe. Gag.

My classmates swooned over his writing, and hailed him the god of type. It scared me. If Bringhurst had ever visited our class I think it might have looked like an episode of Oprah’s Favorite Things: people passing out over their drafting tables, screaming themselves hoarse, with eyes rolling back into their heads and their tongues hanging out. Freaky. Anyhow, all this fervor for Bringhurst made me only loathe him more, and I promised to burn his annoying book upon my graduation.

Then, I got a job. Part of my job was to lay out an entire magazine three times a year all by my lonesome. I freaked out. What kind of a hot mess had I gotten myself into? If you visit my blog you’ll see I’m really an illustrator at heart. And when I got my first “big-girl” design job I started wishing I’d paid more attention in typography classes. I turned to the only expert I had at my fingertips: Bringhurst. Now, I’m not going to say that I’m a Bringhurst convert, but when I read the book a second time I realized that it wasn’t his message that bummed me out, it was his delivery. His writing was so exclusive, I felt like I needed a membership to read it. The Country Club of Type is what that guy is all about, and it is too bad because he knows his shite.

One of the things Iove about Librarian Girl, that I think comes through a lot in her writing here is that she’s all about being all-inclusive. In her world you don’t have to publish something to call yourself a “writer”, have an art show at a swanky gallery to call yourself an “artist”, or be able to play Flight of The Bumblebee on your granny’s upright to call yourself a “musician”. It’s an awesome attitude that has rubbed off on me in our years of friendship, and I am grateful for it. So I want to add that you don’t have to memorize or even read Bringhurst to become your own fontastic typophile. Thanks to personal computers and desktop publishing software everyone can dabble in design. And it doesn’t need to be scary, or snooty, or exclusive.

At one time or another you’ll probably be called upon to make something like a newsletter, or a flyer describing a free lecture, or a sign for the office kitchen that says “Wash Your Own Damn Dishes”. Picking the “best” typeface for your printed piece should be looked at like picking a beverage to compliment your favorite meal (a burger and a float, perhaps?), or a pair of shoes to top off that swanky outfit. It should be fun, and can even be a refection of your personal style. What seems to be the main problem out there is that people don’t know that they have choices, and LOTS of them. You don’t always have to put vanilla ice cream in your root beer float, people.

One of the best examples out there is the overuse of the font Comic Sans. Yes, I’m picking on a font here. Sorry Mister Sans, it’s not your fault. Most people use Comic Sans because they see it as a fun, lighthearted font. To all of you folks who have used and overused the font, take heart. You’ve got the right idea! Fonts can help set the tone for what you are trying to say. There are just so many other great alternatives out there. Here are two of my fave resources for bulking up my own font library:

Myfonts
This site rocks. It is really accessible, and completely removes all the snootiness from discovering new typefaces. They have an wonderful feature on their site that lets you search for typefaces by describing what you are looking for. For example, here are the selections I got when I typed in “Funny”. They also have a great button that allows you to find fonts similar to the one you might like, but want something a little different. It’s like saying “I like that boot, but does it come in hot pink”? Here is what I got when I went looking for fonts similar to Comic Sans. Awesome, no?

dafont
Here’s great website of free unique fonts. Most of them are free for personal use, so a sign or newsletter would be perfect. Check out their section of “Comic” fonts. There is even one called “I Hate Comic Sans”, which is much more interesting that plain ole Comic Sans, and best of all, its free!

Typefaces have power. The power to get your message across quickly and clearly, make it memorable, and in true Librarian Girl fashion do it with “flair”. Next time you need to make something printed, take a few minutes before you start and do a little typeface research. You’re on your way to discovering your own fontastical abilities!

I’m Out, No Diggity No Doubt.
Neighbor J

Blogsitters on Deck

It’s just about time for me to jump in the car and hightail it to California! I have spent the last 24 hours doing such things as working, running around town searching for a good brown shirtdress which I somehow got into my head I wanted to have for my trip but the ones I was seeing were just not good enough because I had a vision in my head for what I wanted, and shivering while hoping to high heaven that California will be warmer than 40 degrees.

While I am gone, I didn’t want to leave the bloggie unattended so I asked some of my peeps to babysit it for me. So for the next few posts you will be hearing from the following fine blog scribes. I have no idea what any of them might say and so this will be interesting.

1. Josh, my blog friend who does live action book reviews on his blog (librarian brownie points for sure) and who never fails to make me chortle. Yes, I said chortle. He is such a card.

2. Hopscotch, my neighbor and fellow librarian who still likes me even though I demanded a brownie from her once in a most rube like manner.

3. Alli, who never fails to say something hilariously embarrassing about me because she’s known me since kindergarten and has seen me in all sorts of stupid situations. I can’t tell you how much I love this about her. She keeps me honest.

4. Neighbor J, also a keeper of my secrets and one of the few people that can make me almost throw up from laughing. True friendship, that.

With that, I release my blog to this cadre of pals, to dish up whatever they would like to say. I’ll be reading from the road!

I’m out,
Librarian Girl

2007 Has Left the Building

Stealing a meme from Librarisaurus Rex. Stealing is fun. Go ahead, steal this from me, you’ll see.

1. What did you do in 2007 that you’d never done before?
Commuted more than five miles away from where I live to get to work every day. I am now a card-carrying member of car culture. And it sucks. And I watched the Bachelor this year for the first time ever. And that sucked too. Wow, way to start off the list all cheery!

2. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Honey please. I’m living in the now, dude.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Yes! Babies were shooting out all over the place. Most notably, Neighbor J and B had a sparkly eyed girlie who is now locomoting herself around town via her patented rolling technique, and friends H and J had a little zen baby who looks at you with eyes that say “‘whatsa haps?” And lots more babies. All destined to be more mature than I am in a year or two.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
No, although it was pretty damn close this year. Too close. That shit was the real deal.

5. What countries did you visit?
The good ‘ol US of A had to be the only resting place for mine asseth this year. That’s ok. Sometimes I think I have spent enough time on a plane in the first 25 years of my life to last me forever. Oh, but I did get to go see Frankenmuth. Which should totally be its own fake German nation.

6. What would you like to have in 2008 that you lacked in 2007?
Healthy, healthy loved ones. All of them! I don’t want to hear ONE SNEEZE out of the lot of you! Because I have HAD IT. A robot vacuum cleaner would be nice too.

7. What dates from 2007 will remain etched upon your memory?
H and R being born, a Most Shocking Day at work (and I am not easily shocked but this one was a doozy which I wish I could tell you about except I would surely get dooced), the day my dad had a stroke, finding out that my sis-in-law has MS, finding out that Nordic Boy’s mom has a combination of serious health ailments, the day when my brother went into the hospital (what a pattern this is, huh?), sitting in my parents’ back yard with my mom, dad, and Nordic Boy when my dad got out of the hospital and me just soaking in the precious time that we had together, eating cupcakes in the middle of the night with Alli and Map, having an official Librarian Girl and Bio-Girl Day of Fun (much like Joey and Janice’s Day of Fun, except, you know, we like each other), getting to see ex-roomie Palindrome for a day or two and playing with my nephew.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Having a laugh each day, even when things were bad. (You know how the catchphase on Extras that Ricky Gervias always says is “Is she havin’ a laugh?” Yeah, that’s me. I’m having a laugh.)

9. What was your biggest failure?
I stopped categorizing things I do as failures a long time ago. That shit is toxic. Not doing that.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
No, I made it through another year in tact.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
A washer and dryer. Not an iPod, or a trip, or an exciting pair of shoes, but a washer and dryer. God I’m old.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Did I tell you about the time I didn’t whine about being cold? Ok, ok, spotlight off of me. I had a couple of friends who were just the most kick-ass support system ever when all the family health crises were going down. Most notably K and Bio-Girl. Nordic Boy and I were barely functioning for a while there and you two rocked the hizzy. And everyone else that helped us out too. So much kindness out there.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
World events certainly can make my mood go over into the bad place.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Mortgage, mortgage, mortgage. Oh, and um, my mortgage.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Ok, I am starting to sound like a one-note Sally, but I was obviously excited when my Dad started to pull through. On a more superficial note, I was also excited by Lost and Battlestar Galactica (shut it, I know it’s geeky), the final Harry Potter book (geek points going ever higher), finding a really great pair of jeans, and hosting Alli and Map in my town.

16. What song will always remind you of 2007?
Stronger by Kanye West (which I could totally spit out word for word for you which you would think I wouldn’t be advertising but hey, whatevs). And What Ever Happened by the Strokes. Neither of these have anything at all to do with what actually happened in ’07. I just heard these two songs a lot.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? Happier, baby.
b) thinner or fatter? Who the hell is counting? Not me.
c) richer or poorer? About the same, I think. Maybe a tad richer.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
I haven’t been arting as much as I would have liked during the year.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Worrying.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
I spent it with Nordic Boy and blood-sucking zombies and Will Smith.

21 is missing. Couldn’t be bothered to stick around, apparently.

22. Did you fall in love in 2007?
Every damn day.

23. How many one-night stands?
365 in a row. What a hoochie!

24. What was your favorite TV program?
Battlestar Galactica.

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
What kind of jacked up question is this?? The yearly hatred question? I’d have to say that my hatred levels are all about the same as they were last year.

26. What was the best book you read?
Asking a librarian this question is like kicking him/her in the mouth. OUCH! I plead the fifth.

27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
I re-discovered Radio Department this year. I loved them and then sort of forgot about them. Now the love, it be renewed.

28. What did you want and get?
Unconditional love.

29. What did you want and not get?
A nice yard.

30. What was your favorite film of this year?
I didn’t have one. Movies weren’t really grabbing me this year. I liked the Queen with Helen Mirren in it.

31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
Sick, weilding tissues, hacking up a lung, cancelling birthday plans, and mad as HELL. I felt like I was turning older than dirt.

32.What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
I missed out on my annual Oregon beach trip with my best pals this year. I wish we would have gone because the year just didn’t seem right without it.

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2007?
Head to toe fabulous, of course. Same as every year.

34. What kept you sane?
Who says I was kept sane? Clearly, meme-question-writer, you don’t know me.

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Who did I “fancy?” Oh, I don’t know. Jonathan Rhys Myers is a cutie.

36. What political issue stirred you the most?
Iraq, of course. The situation in Myanmar. Now Pakistan.

37. Who did you miss?
Too many people to name, sadly. This meme is starting to bum me out.

38. Who was the best new person you met?
Well, the two new babies in my life are right up there. And when you ask “best NEW person,” they are definitely that. New people, that is.

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2007:
Dancing around and singing nonsense songs can always cheer you up in a pinch.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
“And you were not a dot dot dot
waiting for me to complete you
and it was like I just forgot
to measure everything that I do”

Final Thoughts:
2007 was a kick in the crotch and walk in the park all at the same time. I smiled a lot and worried a lot, and I tried to grow up and I felt about a hundred years old too. 2007 was just more of my life and that life is pretty damn good. I can’t wait for more. Bring it!

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I’m out,
Librarian Girl

"Recappy Chappies With Snappy Serapes"

The year is winding down and so all you are going to see from all sides is Attack of the Year’s Recaps. There will be countdowns aplenty and people summing up the year and pontificating about the best songs, the worst shows, the most fascinating people, the most intriguing artisanal cheeses, the top-rated beard groomers, and the must-have nun-habits of 2007. And there will be lots of bloggers tagging other bloggers with year-end recap memes, and although I tecnnically have not yet been tagged, I am anticipating that I will so I am going to declare myself tagged. I should have thought of this technique a long time ago. This way, when I wasn’t picked for the dodgeball team in middle school, I coulda just said “eff you, effers. I pick myself for your team. Deal with that.”

Two things about that little imaginary anecdote there.

1. I used to get picked pretty quickly for dodgeball. Not first, but somewhere in the front of the middle. So I didn’t have that whole picked-last trauma that everyone else seems to have. I have never understood that mathematically- how can SO MANY people have picked-last trauma? If everyone in the world was getting picked last, then who the hell was getting picked first and second and third?

2. I never would have said “eff you, effers” in middle school. I would have said something way more cussy. I had a rotten mouth back in the day. Sorry Mom.

Then, after I had tagged myself for Recapping Fun, I started to think about my year. And I started to type. And you know what? The really Big Events of my 2007…kind of sucked. I mean, I started to look at it and I realized how Eeyore-like it all sounded. First of all, my beloved Dad got sick. Really super serious scary sick. Second of all, my BFF lived far away and this was the first time in years that I hardly ever saw her, which totally felt weird. Third, another (former) BFF of mine, after a couple of years of The Chop Chop Salad between us, finally bowed out of my life for good and it truly broke my heart in a way that was in the back of my mind for much of my year…

Jeez, Wheezy. What kind of jacked up list is that? Because I hadn’t thought my year was so bad until I actually started writing this list out. In fact, I had been under the delusion that the year had been ok. Good, even. Because in my head, on a day to day basis, I think about things a certain way that is actually quite sunny. For example, when my dad was sick, I was really upset, yes, but I was also really full of love for him, and I spent a ton of time thinking about how lucky I am to have had a dad like I do, and how many people I know that don’t have such great dads. So in the midst of feeling sad about what was happening, I was also feeling at peace about it, in a weird way. I’m not trying to minimize the worry that I felt. I was scared shitless, believe me. But to sum up the whole event by putting it on a list as “my dad almost died in ’07” just doesn’t feel like a fair assessment of what happened and how it affected my life.

So I’m going to take myself right back off the Recapping Train. At least in the way that I have seen it done, which makes you have to reduce your life into the really big deal events. My life is more than the really big deal events. It’s all the little things that add up to my year.

Things like:

Freaking out the Gap ladies.

Rating men and MEN.

Talking in my sleep for the first time ever.

Running around with a horde of librarians.

Going green by subtracting some green.

Becoming an auntie.

Keeping Nordic Boy alive.

Talking on the phone a lot. And always about very important matters of state.

Living in Operaland.

Showing you a 9th grade note.

Showing me some love.

Getting beat up for beauty.

Being cold. I talked about being cold a lot. A really lot.

These are the things that made up my life in 2007. I can’t reduce it more than that. Life is, to me, by and large, silly. Day to day weirdo stuff. I’m trying really hard not to use the phrase “fabric of my life” since that will just make everyone think about cotton. But you get what I’m saying right? Life is made of the small things. The unrecappable.

What are the small moments that happened to you in ’07? Comment or write about them on your blog.

Look at that. I totally just picked you for my dodgeball team.

I’m out,
Librarian Girl