Waiting for My Real Life to Begin

The life and times of a girl named Swishy.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

I don't even know

I am in this weird zone right now. I feel like there is SO MUCH going on and NOTHING going on at the same time. Sometimes I'm cranky, sometimes I'm bored, sometimes I'm fine. I think maybe I haven't really settled into the whole "this is my life now" thing yet. I'm OK and everything, I just have no idea how this is all going to turn out and it's a little weird.

Anyway. I have a few stories, but they involve work people and generally I don't blog about work people, at least not work people on a social level, so I'm not sure if I should tell them or not. It's just ... I'm shaking my head, put it that way. Shaking my head and thinking, I CANNOT HANDLE BOYS. Also, HOW CAN THIS BE HAPPENING WHEN I HAVE ONLY BEEN HERE A WEEK AND A HALF?!?

A WEEK and a HALF. It feels so much longer, you have no idea.

Anyway. Work is fine, I have no apartment, basically nothing is new in that department. I do not have a coffee shop yet and it is freaking me out, for real. I have this crazy weird schedule right now, so I was off yesterday, and I did all the usual stuff I do in the morning on my day off--pay my bills, run my errands--and then I was like, I'm supposed to go to my coffee shop now and blog about CIA agents! I'm SUCH a person of habit ... the schedule itself is hard enough to get used to, but then on top of it my day OFF schedule is different and I'm like a little lost puppy dog. The whole working out thing is tripping me out, too. My work has a gym but I'm a little scared of it, plus I would sort of have to work out before work and I like getting ready at home because there's just a lot of stuff involved that I don't want to schlep around. The hotel has a treadmill, which I've used like once, and I still have my old gym membership but I haven't found the location here yet.

Lame.

On the plus side, I've been playing a new game of "drive around and see if I can find a Target." It makes me unbelievably, irrationally happy to find a Target and see the same stuff inside that was at my old Target. It's like, FINALLY, at least SOMETHING didn't change!

Wow. I am so boring. I'll have to work on that.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Coming up for air

Heyyyy. This week has been the longest blur EVER. But I am alive and I am in one piece and I haven't been fired and I haven't been branded the town's biggest social outcast (yet). So that is good.

A few of the week's highlights and lowlights and WTF-lights before I do a faceplant into my pillows:

* So I'm in temporary housing, right? It's different from the last time I was in temp housing. That was like a real apartment in an apartment complex, with lots of dishes and a washer and dryer and a VCR. This is pretty much a hotel, which is OK, except I walked in, all ready to watch the tapes I'd loaded up with shows to keep me company my first few days, and there was NO VCR. You KNOW I walked myself right out the door and to the closest Target to buy one. (Except that was a little bit of a disaster because of the kind of TV I have in my room, plus they do something with the cables so you can't disconnect stuff, I guess so you don't steal anything, and blah blah blah I'm not going into the rest of it other than to say there's a VCR/DVD combo sitting on my chair waiting to be returned to Best Buy. And thank goodness it is 2008 and I can watch TV shows online.) Also, the channel down and mute buttons on my remote don't work AND I don't have Bravo, VH1, MTV and basically every other channel worth watching. I think it is all a psychological tactic to make me want to move out faster and into my own place. IT IS TOTALLY WORKING!

* Best part of the hours upon hours of mind-numbing orientation: sexual harassment training. I am so TOTALLY 12 years old. I can never keep a straight face during those things. They gave us like four scenarios and we had to say whether they were sexual harassment or not, and then the lady gave us her porn talk. ("You might leave that day thinking you're OK, but I WILL FIND OUT and WE WILL HAVE A TALK. It doesn't embarrass me to have those talks AT ALL, but trust me, it will COMPLETELY embarrass you." Ha ha ha.)

* Tuesday was the worst day. It was horrible and long and freezing cold and I worked late and it was just a big crappy crap sandwich kind of day. So on the way home from work I stopped and got an ice cream sundae for dinner, got in the tub, ate my sundae, had a good cry and put myself in bed at 8:30. If you think that sounds pathetic, believe me, it was about a thousand times more pathetic than it sounds.

* Wednesday was the best day. I work with the nicest boy who ever lived. He was my person that day and he was SO sweet to me. (I know what you're going to say, and noooo, no, no.) Anyway, it was exactly what I needed, a little break from all the craziness, and that night I went out with a bunch of the guys I work with. I thought it was really nice of them to ask me and the nice boy even waited for me so he could drive in front of me so I wouldn't get lost on the way home.

* Thursday afternoon at work:

Co-worker One: Hey, Swish, guess what ... Co-worker Two has a friend who's a pirate.
Me: A friend who's a WHAT?
Co-worker Two: He's a PRIVATEER.
One: Right. A pirate.
Two: A PRIVATEER. (Pause.) I don't even know why I told you guys that.
Me: You seriously have a friend who's a pirate? Like, for real? He goes around on a ship and whatever?
One: A privateer, yeah.
Me: That is the most bizarre thing I have ever heard. Does he have a parrot?
Two: No.
Me: A parakeet?
Two: No. He had a dog, but it died.
One: Of scurvy?

This goes on for maybe 10 minutes.

* I went around and looked at apartments today. I don't really have anything to say about that yet other than it happened.

* Also, I did some laundry and no one stole my underwear. Yay! I had a washer/dryer in my old place but in the place before that I had to use a laundry room and my underwear ALWAYS got stolen. I'm all about the little victories these days.

I'll be a little more back to normal next week, I think (hope). Have a good weekend, everyone!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Status update

First day: Not so bad
Second day: Not so good
I will see if three times is the charm tomorrow. Cross your fingers.

**********

OK, a very fast update: It's Wednesday night at like midnight, so I can't write a real post, but today was MUCH better. Not perfect, but better ... I got the W magazine with Angelina Jolie AND I even went out with some people tonight! I will do a real update tomorrow, I promise. Thank you so, so much for being so supportive and patient and crossing your cute little fingers and toes for me. More later ...

Monday, October 20, 2008

Quick updates

OK, it's getting late and my first day of work is mere hours away, but I owe you a couple quick updates ...

The CIA agent. Here are the pictures. Clandestine register shot No. 1:



And No. 2:



And the super-secret rear view!



OK, the end of the story. No, I did not go up to him and tell him I've been blogging to the entire Internet about his secret identity, and don't ask me why not, because none of you would have done it either and you KNOW it! (OK, except for Manic. Ha.) Here's what happened: He looks at me about a thousand times. He packs up his computer, but he doesn't leave--he sits there for a while. And then he finally gets up and slowly walks across the coffee shop toward the exit ... but wait! He doesn't leave; instead, he goes into the bathroom. A couple minutes later, he walks out, stops and looks over at me. He smiles, and I sort of smile back. He takes a step toward me, and then he smiles again before turning around and walking out the door, out of the coffee shop, out of Miss Swishy's life forever.

I know I joke all the time about my little CIA agent, but it was honestly kind of a poignant moment. I hope he really is a secret agent, or at least that he secretly reads my blog and gets a little bit of a kick out of it.

*********

Friday was moving day. I spent a big chunk of the day on my bathroom floor. At first it was to stay out of the way (the bathroom was the one off-limits room), and then it was because every time I walked out, I saw less home and more empty, impersonal apartment and it all started to get a little overwhelming.

I tried really hard to hold it together (I blow dried my hair! I had like six different kinds of drinks in the fridge! I went out at freaking 7 a.m. on 2 1/2 hours of sleep and got bagels for everyone!) but there were a million little things left to do and I was completely overtired and emotional and as the day went on, I was just like, PUT MY STUFF DOWN AND GET OUT OF MY HOUSE. It was not my favorite day, and thank goodness I have wonderful people in my life who can put up with me when I am way, way less than perfect, that's all I can say.

*********

I wrote my name on my bedroom wall before I left. I always do that before I leave a place, write my name somewhere tiny where no one but me knows it's there. I've done it since I was eight. I guess it's my way of making sure I leave a mark.

*********

Two completely random interactions with strangers:

I'm taking some of the last stuff out to my friend's car when an older guy across the parking lot gets my attention. "I know we've never met," he says, "but I'm sorry to see you go."

I'm on the plane, looking like a complete wreck. I'm tired and I've been crying all morning and all I want to do is go to sleep. I try sitting back, I try leaning on my hand. I'm putting my head on my knees when the guy sitting next to me, a kid with tattoos and longish hair and several piercings, taps me on the shoulder. Without a word, he hands me his pillow. He had been leaning on it while he wrote music in a little notebook. "Are you sure?" I ask, and he nods. I take it. It smells like peppermint and I'm able to fall right to sleep. It was one of the nicest things a stranger has ever done for me.

*********

I've had one meltdown so far and, not surprisingly, it has to do with TV and my inability to watch it. So, you know, even though I'm in a new place, I am pretty much the same old Swishy. I'll tell you about it later, but now I have to try to go to sleep so I don't get fired on my first day. Have a good Monday, everyone!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The final mission

OK. I've been working my little ass off all week to get stuff done for one reason: I am moving across the country in three days. Actually, make that two reasons: I'm moving across the country, and I HAD to carve out a couple hours to go to my coffee shop one last time. I'll be with the movers all day Friday and I'm sure I'll be running around like a crazy person doing last-minute stuff tomorrow, which left today. Today has been a hard-ish day. Last night, a bunch of old coworkers threw a happy hour for me (which stretched into almost five hours!) and way more people came than I expected and it was really sweet and fun but also made me sad, and then I had a dream about someone I really love but am not around anymore, and that made me sad, and then I was sorting through the hard stuff today, the sentimental stuff, and THAT made me sad. So it's been a little bit of a sad day.

All day I kept telling myself one thing to make myself plow through my sort of sad, sort of hard day: YOU HAVE TO GO TO YOUR COFFEE SHOP THIS AFTERNOON. You know how much I love my coffee shop. It is the No. 1 non-living thing I am going to miss most about this place (second, the college radio station, which I have been listening to nonstop). So I plowed through and went out into the traffic and the pouring rain to go hang at my happy place one last time.

I finally just walked in and ... YOU WILL DIE. OK, no, you won't, but I almost did. The CIA agent is here! He hasn't been here in MONTHS! Is that not downright POETIC? My last time at the coffee shop! He totally recognized me and did a little half-smile at me when I went up to the register. And then he remembered that, HELLO! He's a top secret spy, he's not supposed to smile! Have you ever seen Jack Bauer smile? No, you have not. So he caught himself mid-half-smile and put his "intense face" on again.

(I love that I'm talking like it's this amazing coincidence we're both here at the same time on my last day. Of COURSE it's not a coincidence. He's probably been tracking me for months as part of an investigation into girls who blow the covers of secret agents on their blogs.)

You know I took some pictures. I am so damn smooth sometimes, I kill myself. I was standing at the register talking to the girl and she's all, it's so sad you're leaving, and I'm like, oh, you're telling me, I've been a wreck all day, and while we're doing that I take out my camera, turn off my flash and snap two pictures of him like it was nothing. YEAH! The pictures totally suck, but whatever, they are still pictures and I will totally post them as soon as I get home.

In the meantime, I have caught him looking at me like three times. He must know it's his last chance to ask me to go on a SUPER-SECRET SPY MISSION with him! Either that, or he's like, why in the hell does that girl with ratty unwashed hair keep turning around and looking at me. Either/or. I will keep you posted.

*********

Update: He just got up to get more coffee! I took a picture of his ass! He did a FULL smile on his way back! HELLO, IMPORTANT GOVERNMENT MISSION, HERE I COME!

Update 2: He just looked at me again. IM with Manic Mom: "SHUT UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YOU HAVE TO TALK TO HIM!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YOU HAVE TO TELL HIM HE IS SECRET AGENT MAN!!!!!!!! GO UP TO HIM AND SAY, 'IF YOU TELL ME NOT TO MOVE, I SO WON'T!' "

Update 3: Now Manic is on the phone: "GO HAND HIM THE PHONE AND SAY 'IT'S FOR YOU!' JUST WALK OVER. YOU ONLY LIVE ONCE!"

Update 4: I do not do either of those things because a) I am a world-class wimp and b) I am not really sure how to explain to someone that I've been blogging about his very secret career to the World Wide Web for the past year.

He is on the phone right now and he keeps looking at me. Option A: "Seriously, there's messy chic and then there's THAT. When did she last wash her hair, 1997?" (Yesterday! Yesterday is not THAT long ago!) Option B: "We are SO BUSTED! She's onto me! ABORT! ABORT!"

At this point, it's a toss-up. If a little more time goes by and you don't hear from me, you can assume that I've been tossed into the back of his black Lincoln Town Car for questioning.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

T-minus I can't think about it

Hello my sweet blog friends. How are you? I am fine. Well, mostly fine, I am a little neurotic/emotional/stressed/overwhelmed/pick a word and I'm probably it right now, but I am fine. I hope you are fine, too!

My weekend was crazy. On Friday morning, I drove my pimpin' new ride to Manic's neck of the woods for a whirlwind, 24-hour last hurrah. There was construction and cops the whole way, so it took me forever to get there (right in time, I might add, for awesome rush hour traffic). But we persevered! Manic had brownies and water and Diet Coke (and an endless supply of patience) all ready for me in case I was crabby because that is just the kind of wonderful BBFF she is. We went out for a night on the town and she gave me some beautiful, thoughtful and funny going-away presents ... and that's all I can tell you right now, because she is currently having a contest I will pretty much ruin if I go into any more detail. So go enter, and if you win a CD, I want a copy!

I stopped and had lunch with one of my favorite friends on the way back (one of the ones who just moved) and then went out with a few more of my favorite friends Saturday night. It was a little bit of a hard weekend in some ways (I think I cried for like two solid hours in the car, with the saddest acoustic coffee shop music in the world as my soundtrack), but I really am such a lucky girl. Even when I'm not at my best, I have people who love me anyway. They cheer me on and tell me I'm great even when I'm really not that great, and I can promise you not a day goes by that I don't think of what a little miracle that is. I feel like I've gotten to be in the presence of the best people life has to offer. I don't know what on earth I did to deserve the company of such wonderful people, but I am such a better person for it. (And that includes all of you! I hope you know how much I appreciate all of you who stop by and laugh at my silly little stories about CIA agents and McDonald's streakers. You guys are awesome. You have made so many of my crappy days better!)

Anyway, there have been little pockets of craziness, but I've gotten to spend some wonderful time with some wonderful people the past few days. This is how you'll know I'm running around like an insane person, though: I FORGOT MY CAMERA THE ENTIRE WEEKEND! I know, horrible, right? So no pictures, but I'll be sure to make up for it with a plethora of box and wrapping photos later in the week. (Exciting, huh? I know, I'm SUCH A TEASE.)

Move status: The truck comes Friday, my car gets picked up the same day, I fly out Saturday morning, I will move into temporary housing and then I will start my job on Monday. No, I am not remotely ready, but you know ... whatever. I am finding my inner Zen and embracing it so hard it starts coughing and its face turns purple, just watch me.

Starting tomorrow. Tonight, I think I will embrace a bowl of cookies and cream ice cream. Maybe even with a cherry on top.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Hot wheels

I am so incredibly lame. Moving SUCKITY SUCKS, and I just don't have it in me to try to see the humor in it right now. Not when the move is a week away and I STILL don't know which day the movers are coming, not when I still don't know where I'm going to be staying once I go, not when there are mountains and mountains of things surrounding me that still have to be sorted through, people that still have to be called, errands that still have to be run ...

Yes. I am lame.

I did, however, cross one very big to-do off my list today, and that was buying a new car. Oh, my stressful. I am fairly certain the whole experience took a good five years off my life, but ... did I mention how pretty my car is? It IS pretty! I feel a little guilty for buying a new car, but I really, really did need one and I definitely got my money's worth out of the old one. It was the first car I'd ever owned, I paid for every cent of it myself, and I drove it right into the ground, poor thing.

But back to the actual buying. OK. I sort of knew what I wanted already, because I've only been thinking about buying a new car for, oh, three years now. So I went to one dealership last weekend and test-drove cars. I was able to narrow it down to the model I wanted, but I was NOT a big fan of the sales guy. For one thing, he kept talking to my (male, card-carrying penis-owning) friend instead of me, even though I was CLEARLY the person buying the car. Also, he actually picked up a half-smoked cigarette off the pavement, brushed it off and put it in his pocket to smoke later. I don't know if it was his or someone else's, but either way, ewww. Also, he couldn't answer some of my questions, and also, I wanted to title it in the new state and I wasn't sure I trusted him not to screw it up since he couldn't answer my other questions.

Anyway. I go into a near-panic when I so much as renew my cell phone contract, so even if he was the smartest, most charming non-cigarette-pilferer in the world, I was not going to be making any purchases that day anyway. I left, and spent the next two days going online, checking dealer inventories, running numbers, blah blah blah, until I found the car I wanted at a dealer about 10 miles away. I COULD have gone back to the other dealership and had him send for it so he could get the commission, but ... I didn't. Does that make me a bad person? I felt a little bad about it, but obviously not bad enough. (Also, when I mentioned that to him as a possibility--because I didn't want a white car and that's all he had with the features I wanted--he was like, ummm, I don't know about that, what's wrong with white, what do you have against white, I think you should just go with white.)

Anyway, tangent. So I go to the new dealership yesterday. My token male friend (who, bless his heart, is the most long-suffering, patient person on the planet) gets there a little bit before me, and is like, ohhhh, snap, guess what, some other lady is taking your car. And I was like, WHAT! What are you talking about? And he was like, yeah, she's buying the car you'd picked out, but they said they can get one here just like it by tomorrow. And I was like, hmm, we'll see about that.

So I get there and they're like, we're so sorry, that car has been sold, but you can drive this one, it's the exact same thing, and we'll get you the color you want (blue) by the end of the day if you decide you want it. So I'm like, OK. Then, during the test drive, I happen to mention that I've already been approved for a loan by my bank and it's like ... screeeeeeeech. Me: approved. Other lady: not yet approved. The car goes to: ME.

I bring this up only because ...

My friend: Are you SURE you want this car?
Me: Why? Should I get another car?
Friend: I mean THIS car.
Me: What do you MEAN this car?
Friend: I mean, they can get the same thing sent here, maybe even by the end of the day.
Me: Why would I do that if they already HAVE it here?
Friend: Because.
Me: Because WHY?
Friend (looks around and whispers): Because of that lady.
Me (just look at him)
Friend: Seriously.
Me: What, was she, like, SCARY or something?
Friend: A little bit.
Me: You think she's gonna, like, HUNT me DOWN?
Friend (very serious whisper): Maybe.

I decide to take my chances with the potentially pissed-off, scary woman and agree to buy the car. Now I have to sign the paperwork. This is the part that's SUPPOSED to be easy, because of the whole thing with my dad's work. There's a set price for the car, which I've already researched. The only haggling is over extras and financing.

OK. Let me just tell you. That took FIVE HOURS over TWO DAYS. The finance guy was an ASSHOLE. I guess they are sort of paid to be assholes, but I mean, come on, I am blonde and I am giggly but I am not a complete and total idiot. First we fight over the trade-in value of my car. I LOOKED at the blue book trade-in value. I KNOW what my car is worth. So finally I say, forget it, I'll take it somewhere else, and he caves and gives me what I'm asking. Then he tries to tell me I should finance through them because they can offer me a lower interest rate. "Is that guaranteed?" I say. Um ... no, he replies. Then he tells me I qualify for extra incentives too if I finance through them. Fine, I say, give me all the numbers and I'll go home and look them over and come back tomorrow. Of course he's not down with that. So around and around we go.

I go back this morning and decide, OK, I'll finance through them. Except ... guess what? One of the incentives has magically disappeared! And, oh, yeah, there's an extra $500 fee folded in for something I didn't approve! I was like, ix-nay on the 500 bucks, and I'm going outside to call my accountant (my dad) now, thanks. So I call my dad, and then I call my bank, and then I call my dad back again, and then I call my bank and in the meantime the finance guy is SO PISSED OFF AT ME, I cannot even tell you. Even my friend was like, whoa, he is pissed. But I was like forget it, let him be mad, this is a HUGE MASSIVE DECISION and I'm never gonna see him again anyway. Which is great progress for me, since I HATE having people mad at me, but on the inside I was still a big old ball of stress because we're talking about a FIVE-DIGIT PURCHASE and my idea of a really big purchase is a $50 pair of pants I can return the next day.

Anyway. I go in, tell him I'm going with the nice, patient people at my bank (WHY? he asks. BECAUSE, I say), and all I need to do is log in to my account and approve the amount. So after he kicks and screams about me using his precious computer and his precious Internet, I go to approve the loan and promptly freak out because it still says $50,000 (my pre-approval amount), which is not even CLOSE to what I am spending. So I excuse myself again to call my bank to make sure they don't need to update the amount, and the finance guy's head basically explodes all over the room.

The happy ending: The bank people talked me down from my ledge, the paperwork went through easy-breezy, the finance guy did not kill me, the scary lady has not yet hunted me down, and oh, yes, I have a pretty new car. WITH SATELLITE RADIO. Yay!

Now I just have to get myself moved ...

Monday, October 06, 2008

Did I mention how much I love moving?

No? Really? Maybe because I HATE IT WITH A FIERY WHITE-HOT PASSION. That might be the reason I haven't mentioned it.

Actually, I'm not going to make this an "I hate moving" post, because I'm sure there will be plenty of opportunities for one (or more) of those in the next two weeks. (I move next week. NEXT WEEK. Friday, I think. IS THAT NOT INSANE? I agree. It IS insane.)

This is the stuff I've been trying to do/figure out lately:

* Whether I should take a pre-move trip out to look at apartments. Originally, I was like, yes, totally, of course I'm going to. But my background check took longer than usual because of my old company moving, and then my relocation coordinator--who I'm supposed to schedule everything through--was out with strep throat for a week (which I only found out after she came back to work and my zillion messages). So I just got the ball rolling on that whole thing a few days ago, and I'm supposed to start work on the 20th, so I'm like ... forget it, I'd rather get stuff done here than fly out there and maybe find a place to live, maybe not. (I can live in temporary housing there, which I would probably do anyway, so it's not the end of the world ... I don't think.)

* Whether I should drive out or fly out. They're like, OK, we'll fly you out and ship your car and get you a rental until it gets there. Which sounds great, except of course then neurotic me is like, WAIT! What about my houseplants? WAIT! How am I supposed to pack a MONTH'S worth of stuff into a couple of suitcases? (Because whatever I don't take goes into storage until I get out of temp housing.) So then I'm like, forget it, I'm driving ... but THEN I'm like, I would have to leave AT LEAST a day earlier, and do I REALLY want to drive alone halfway across the country when I'm a COMPLETE EMOTIONAL WRECK? My friend Allee says my plants will be fine and I believe her because she is smart about that kind of thing, and I can always send myself a box of extra things I might need ... right?

* What to do about my mail. I think I've decided to forward it to my new work until I know where I'm going to live (as opposed to a P.O. box or whatever), but ... I don't know. I hate making that decision, because I am very possessive of my mail and I don't want people even GLANCING at my People magazine before I look at it, and mail can sometimes be kind of personal, which makes me sound like I order naughty things and I SO DO NOT but you know what I mean, and what if stuff gets lost and ... did I mention that I'm neurotic? I know.

* Buying a new car. Yes, I am buying a new car before I leave, because ... well, because of this, this and this, and I don't need that kind of drama in a state where I don't know anyone who will take pity on me and come pick me up as I'm swearing and kicking my tires on the side of the road. My dad gets a deal on a bunch of different cars through his work, so that helps narrow it down, but OH, THE DECISIONS! I test-drove cars for like four hours on Saturday and tonight I went to two more dealers and peeked through the windows of different cars with a flashlight (oh, yes, I did). That's a good decision to have to make, so I'm not complaining, but ohhh, I can make myself crazy with all the little details.

* That means I had to clean out my current car so I can trade it in, and umm ... my car is (was) disgusting. It looks great now but it took forever and half the contents are strewn about my hallway as I type, just in time for ....

* The lady to come survey my apartment to make sure it's really only going to take one day to pack. (It will. As long as I throw out the 18 TONS of STUPID CRAP I've accumulated. I save EVERYTHING. WHY, I ask you, do I have every gas receipt from the past five years? Why do I have an entire basket of Happy Meal toys? Why do I have mountains of sticky notes full of phone numbers that are no longer even in SERVICE?) I'm trying to go through stuff before she gets here so I look like I have it together better than I do.

And ... that's about it. Is that an "I hate moving" post? Maybe. I will write something fun tomorrow, I promise. (Or SCARY. Like the story I have about the CREEPIEST GUY EVER.) Fun or scary ... kinda sounds like moving, huh?

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Harder to breathe

(Oh, how I love when the double-meaning title just writes itself!)

Ohhhh, goodness. Hi, you guys. I know I promised I wouldn't disappear when I got stressed but ... apparently I lied. I didn't mean to lie, though! I'm sorry. Things have been a little intense around here, and I was going to write about it but thinking about it is making me not be able to breathe a little bit, so I'm not gonna, at least not tonight. It's all moving stuff and life stuff and ... you know.

Anyway! On to other things. I have this totally, totally great group of friends here. It's a little weird, though, because three of them have moved in the past couple of months, all at the same time, and now I'm moving, so we have to be all strategic and creative about getting together now. One of my friends had a birthday last week, so we decided to plan something around that. (The girls who moved all moved within a few hours' drive, so THAT part is good, at least. I'm the only one moving HALFWAY ACROSS THE WHOLE DAMN COUNTRY. Sigh.)

So anyway, they drove in to meet the rest of us and we got to play a little. We went to one of those bead places to make earrings, and my friend was like, hey, we should each make six pairs of earrings so we can all take home a pair from everyone! I was like, oh, my gosh, that's genius. I totally felt like a kid getting a goody bag at a birthday party.



Can you guess which ones I made? I'll give you a hint: they're my least favorite. I totally could not decide which beads to use and I think everyone else's turned out way cuter. My future as a jewelry designer: over before it even started. Boo.

After we did that, we went to dinner, and THEN we went to a Counting Crows-Maroon 5 concert. It was SO FUN! I am always happy to see Counting Crows. August and Everything After is one of my favorite albums ever, and they're pretty good live. But Adam, oh, Adam. I have never seen a man who needs a hug (and another Jack and Coke) more than Adam Duritz during a concert. I guess I would be melancholy too if I'd unsuccessfully dated both Jennifer Aniston AND Courteney Cox. (Both of them! That never fails to amaze me.)

We missed the opening act, Augustana, but they came out and performed a bit with Counting Crows. I LOVE their lead singer. He is just the cutest thing ever with his cute little hats and his cute little voice.

And Maroon 5! LET ME JUST TELL YOU. I know that Adam Levine is a complete manwhore. I've read the Rolling Stone interview, I've heard the stories, and if he'd been obnoxious, I would not have been one bit surprised. But listen to me. That man is SEX ON A STICK. At the exact same moment, when he started singing a cover of Wicked Game, my friend and I turned to each other and were like, "I TOTALLY GET IT NOW." He is incredibly, incredibly hot when he's performing, and charming, too. I totally and completely would, and so would every single one of you, I guarantee it. It was one of the best concerts I've ever seen.

And, of course, it wouldn't have been a night out without a little stalkerazzi-ing. This couple in front of us was laying on top of each other under a mess of blankets, going to town, so you know we had to take a picture.



I'd blame the sexpertise of Adam Levine, but he wasn't even on stage yet. Did they see the flash go off in their faces? Yes, they did. Did it faze them? Not one bit.