Monthly Archives: May 2011


Moving, part one.

Oh, God, what have I done?
The furniture I purchased is some nice, medium-quality stuff – much nicer than any other couch or table I’ve ever owned (though, to be fair, the only couches or tables that have been completely “mine” were rescued strays from end-of-year res hall closings). But really, Julie? You just got done having a heartfelt conversation with a friend about how you “don’t need fancy stuff” and that you were going to the thrift store to find a table.

I feel like a hypocrite. A hypocrite with a matching sofa and loveseat.

Not my couch.

So I didn’t hit up the La-Z-Boy Furniture Gallery or anything. I just discovered that our nation observes Memorial Day by selling living room furniture in five-piece packages. Also, I am a salesman’s dream. He very nearly sold me on the “matching area rug” until I remembered that my apartment is carpeted.

Oh, I know what you’re thinking, because I’m thinking the same thing: Julie, you idiot. You completely fell for this guy’s sales pitch! You should know better. You went there to find a couch. One couch. Not a fifteen-piece leather reclining sectional with built-in cupholders (though, ooooh, that would be cool, wouldn’t it?). And you walked away with two rooms’ worth of shit. Seriously, Julie? You couldn’t just say “Nope, see this $150 couch? That’s all I want. Thank you and good day, sir!”

Yeah, well, it’s harder than it sounds.

And hey, I own a coffee table now. So there’s that.

Best in Show 5.22

I swear, hon, this is the first bottle I’ve opened today!

Cleanliness is next to craziness.

“The first thing I’m going to do is clean it,”  I tell her. At this, she raises her eyebrows. “What do you mean? You know that they clean it before you move in, right?”

“Um, yeah. Maybe. That’s what they say,” I add. “But I’m pretty sure their definition of clean and my definition of clean are very different.

Mom rolls her eyes; as always, she is completely oblivious to the hundreds of billions of imaginary germs lurking on every surface we touch – except for the ones that my brain has (perhaps arbitrarily) decided are “clean.”

I am not, and never have been, any kind of diagnose-able form of germ-fearer. But! When it comes to certain things – mostly the nooks-and-crannies of public places – I am nearly paralyzed with disgust at what I know is there.

To illustrate the paradox:
I have almost absolutely no problem finding an errant Cheerio or chocolate chip on the floor of my parents’ kitchen and popping it in my mouth. Said Cheerio or chip could have possibly been on the floor for weeks. This is incredibly disgusting, I guess. But hey – I love cereal. Of course, said food particle must be in an area of the floor that I designate as “clean” – this does not include the space where the shitty vinyl flooring meets the walls and/or cabinets (ew) or anywhere within 5″ of the floor vent (double ew) or in the dark, fuzzy spaces under the oven and between the dishwasher and refrigerator (triple-quadruple-quintuple ew).

In the middle of the floor, in perhaps the most highly-trafficked areas, are completely fair game.

When dining in a restaurant, I hate sitting at booths. When this is the only option presented, or I am overruled, it’s okay as long as I don’t have to sit on the inside. This is because the place where Booth meets Wall is filthy. I do not want my coat touching it. I do not want my purse touching it, and there’s no way in hell any square inch of my person will touch it. There must always be at least six inches between myself or my belongings and that wall.

I once saw a kid at a McDonald’s lick the top of a salt shaker and then put it back on the table. I will not use a salt shaker at a restaurant.

I’ve also seen people take the sleeve of their shirt to wipe crumbs off the table. This is a shame; that shirt must now be burned.

Sometimes, after using a public restroom and washing my hands, I must immediately seek out a second, more clean, sink. This is because using the soap or turning on the faucet has somehow made me feel like my hands are even more disgustingly dirty.

Yes, I carry Purell in my purse, because sometimes a backup sink is not available.

I will not wear my work shoes in the house. The floor there (work) is filthy (with just cause, this is not a dig on the cleanliness of my place of work). When I walk in the door, shoes immediately come off – before coat, before hat, before gloves. Socks are a close second, and yes, I realize that walking barefoot in a house of people who wear shoes all the damn time! (how do they do it?!) is probably equally as nasty.

I know people who have no problem using hotel pillows with abandon. I envy their carefree-ness. I have to cover them with a towel before my head can touch them. However, after I have stayed in the same hotel room for two consecutive nights, I can then remove the towel and sleep with direct head-to-pillow contact.

I air these little peccadilloes to you, gentle reader, in the hopes of a) perhaps making you less self-conscious of your own obsessive-compulsive tendencies and b) to encourage you to share your own, so that I can feel less weird.

Cue comments!

sotd 5.20.11

This one goes out to all my homies that love Cool Runnings as much as I do.

“Jamican Bobsledding Chant” / Worl-a-Girl (1993)

sotd 5.19.11

You know what I love, aside from basically the entire Flaming Lips catalog? Listen real carefully at the beginning to hear Wayne Coyne say “You can turn it up even a little bit more.”

“It Overtakes Me” / The Flaming Lips (2006)

sotd 5.18.11

Good song, but I kind of always think about Chevy trucks (or is it beer?) when I hear it.

“Simple Man” / Lynyrd Skynyrd  (1973)

GPS: Giant Piece of…

The history of Global Positioning Systems and satellites is strangely fascinating to me, notwithstanding the adaptation of this technology to automotive nav systems. “With the passion of a thousand suns”* would accurately describe my general distaste for the Garmins, TomToms, Magellans, and K-Mart knock-offs of the western world.

Okay, so maybe that’s a teensy bit of an overstatement. Perhaps what I’m trying  to say is that I hate how one tiny little touch screen seems to transform so many otherwise intelligent, resourceful, humans into incompetent, confused morons.

That, my friends, is not an overstatement. Exhibit A (excuse the poor video quality):

Exhibit B:
A conversation in the car with my father, held while visiting my brother late last week:
Dad takes out the GPS (which Juanita has named George, because, well, I don’t know) and plugs it in. He chooses the address to which we’re traveling (which turns out to be a gas station approximately 150 yards from our Starting Location) and hits “Go.”
George: Please drive to highlighted route.
Dad: Where’s that? What?
Me: It just wants you to leave the parking lot.
Dad: And go where?
Me: Just head back out to the highway.
Dad: But where do I go?
Me: Just leave the parking lot.
Dad: And turn where?
Me: Okay, well, when you get to the road, you can only – you know – go one way.
Dad: What do you mean?
Dad: Why is it telling me to go the other way?
Me: (in my head: OH MY GOD, DAD, I CAN SEE THE GAS STATION FROM WHERE WE ARE PARKED RIGHT NOW. JUST DRIVE TO IT! DRIVE TO IT! DRIVE TO IT!) aloud: Well, it looks like the Sinclair is across the street, so however you need to get to it, just – you know – do that.
Dad: Oh, is that where we’re going?

I’m all for technology – to a point. It’s done some pretty kick-ass things. But I worry that, if it can transform my normally-capable father into a confused mush-brain, what does this mean for the future? I mean, are they even teaching kids how to read a map in school?**

C’est la vie, say the old folks. It goes to show you never can tell.

*Or however that phrase goes. And where did that originate, anyway?
**What are they teaching them in school, anyway? Don’t get me started. I don’t like sounding like an old lady before noon.

sotd 5.17.11

Hadn’t heard of this one until one of my staff members requested that it be included on completely-illegally-burned staff mix CD. I dig it – do you? (Also, skip the vid, if you please. It’s just the lyrics, but it’s the clearest sound I could find on Youtube).

“In the Sun” / Joseph Arthur  (2000)

Daniel Tosh: Completely Serious

One of my friends quotes Daniel Tosh a lot. Like, a lot-lot. And until recently, I just sort of laughed and nodded along, recognizing only those jokes that I caught on Comedy Central commercials in the brief here-and-there snippets I can catch of cable television (and after awhile, recognizing the jokes she’d quote most frequently, even going so far as to spit them back at her as if I, too, was familiar with them firsthand. See how I did that? It’s called years of practice at trying to look cool. I am the master*).

Uh, well, anyway. Moving right along. While I was folding metric tonnages of laundry the other night, I watched Tosh’s Comedy Central special Daniel Tosh: Completely Serious. I don’t normally watch stand-up specials, but I figured I’d try to throw Netflix through (for?) a (the?) loop** and mix it up a bit – Haha, Netflix! You predict that I will rate this Lifetime Movie with two stars, but I gave it three just because it features an actor I find physically attractive who was in that one episode of that one show and now according to some really obscure message board I read, he’s in the background of one of the opening scenes and yes, I purposefully watched the entire fucking thing hoping he’d reappear later but NOPE I just wasted 92 minutes of my life, so yeah, I guess you win this time, Netflix.

It was pretty stinkin’ funny, let me tell ya. His style isn’t exactly gentle or subtle humor, and there were more than a few “Wow, did he just say that?” jokes. But there’s a big part of me that likes that kind of thing, in a “well, we’re all thinking it, right?” kind of way. Tosh himself even says “I don’t pander to the audience” at one point. Well, duh, Daniel. That was pretty obvious from the get-go.

But before you’re completely turned off, the jokes about dirty Cajuns and the morning-after pill are only lightly sprinkled around other one-liner gems like “I don’t think I could stab somebody, ’cause I’m really bad at a Capri Sun” or “‘Money doesn’t buy happiness.’ Uh, do you live in America? ‘Cause it buys a WaveRunner. Have you ever seen a sad person on a WaveRunner? Have you?”

So, internets, have you seen this special? What did you think? And do you watch his internet-clip show Tosh.0 (I think I’m the only one in North America who does not, if I am to believe aforementioned Friend)?

I’d give it 4/5 stars, if I gave ratings for things like this (have I before? It’s been so long since I reviewed something I forgot).

*Really, Julie? Uh, anyone who claims they’re a master at pretending to be cool is clearly a master of being a shithead.

**For the love of Christ will someone explain to me how that expression goes?

Conversations with Juanita

Did you see where the woman fell off the motorcycle? Bike went one way, she went the other, slid under the wheels of an SUV…


It was a nice bike, too.