Monday, October 30, 2006

OK, Enough About Me…

Ha ha! Just kidding. From what I’ve heard, the next year or so until our wedding is going to be ALL about me. Actually, the Pretend Husband is one of those guys who does very well with the details (as you can probably tell from his proposal), so I’d like think this next year will be about US and all the compromises we will be sure to make as we plan our wedding (he’s very traditional while I want everything to be “different” from the dozens of weddings I’ve been to. I’m sure you’ll be getting plenty of details about this in the future, Internet friends).
In answer to the question I’ve been asked, oh, about eight bajillion times this week, no, we do not have a date yet. We decided to just enjoy being engaged for a week, banter around some of our wedding ideas and then worry about the details. But it hasn’t stopped people from asking (even when I got to work at 9 a.m. and told my co-workers I had gotten engaged at 6:30 a.m., I got the question! I know the papers I lay out are stunning, but contrary to belief, I am not actually a magician.)
One of the best reactions to the news of our engagement was from a work friend’s husband. She told him last Monday that we had gotten engaged and his response was, “Is she happy?” I think he meant, “Is she jumping around the office with excitement?” but it was still a funny question.
I also got woken up on Monday night with a phone call from “Bertha,” a good friend in Arizona. I had been in such a dead sleep that I wasn’t sure exactly what was happening, but she asked, “Are you engaged?” and screamed into the phone when I said yes.
Another good reaction was from BAC’s wife, who we did not tell about the engagement. I spent more than an hour in a dimly lit restaurant trying to make my hand obvious to her. At one point, she said, “Well, we don’t have any exciting news from this week. How about you guys?” It took everything I had to answer with a straight face, “Nope, nothing exciting.” We then went for ice cream in a much better lit restaurant and within two minutes of sitting down, Mrs. BAC grabbed my hand and exclaimed, “What is that?” (She meant the ring. She knows what a hand is.)
I’ve decided the PH needs to work on his delivery of the news. Since we had plans to go out to dinner with his parents for his birthday on Monday, we decided to give them the news in person. His way of doing it? He walked by them and said, “Say hello to your daughter-in-law.” They were confused about what he meant and I think they actually looked at Molly first. I finally took pity on them and said, “He proposed this morning.” Then we all went out to dinner and they told the story of how the Pretend Father-in-Law stole the Pretend Mother-in-Law from his friend, who she was dating (PFIL: “We don’t really keep in touch anymore”) and how, a week after he proposed in front of his entire family, she threw the ring back at him for giving her a hickey on her neck (PMIL: “Actually, it was on my lip and my uncle was coming to visit!”)
I’m looking forward to family holidays.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

sorry, i can't top that news.

i had to let that huge announcement sit out there for a few days, but i also wanted to share my pseudo-parenting stories from my time with baby anonymous.

first off, i can't be a mom until i quit my job. because it took me 2+ hours to get to my sister's house from work. and when i got there, well, it reminded me of how close hanging around toddlers is to hanging around my co-workers.

there's the obvious similarity in attention span:
Look, e! a ball!
Look, boss! a shiny new chart!

they're diverted and pleased for a while, and then they throw it over the baby gate (that's my clear analogy to management)/goof it up by trying to do stupid things with excel like accidentally sort the wrong column and ask you to fix it.

but really, our night was uneventful. i threw the ball. and he was so good at retrieving- it was like i was playing with bailey! (i'm kidding... i swear) and we played baseball. well. more like teeball. but with an 8 inch bat and a 6 inch basketball. (but what do i know about baseball...)

and we read. the first page of 7 books. which practically counts for a whole book, right? i found myself reading faster and faster in order to get further along (i may never know what the brown bear saw...) but that didn't slow down baby e. so i'm thinking in a few years that i'll have to start him on dickens. let's see him fly through great expectations that quick.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Finally! Something worth blogging about!

SJ did a great job keeping our blog up in the past week while I was busy working, playing soccer and, you know, getting engaged. That’s right, I said engaged! Yay!
Today is the Pretend Husband’s birthday (can I still call him that? Perhaps now he needs to be “The FiancĂ©” or “The Soon-To-Be Husband?”) He woke up early with the dog, as usual, and then annoyed me by waking me at 6:30 a.m. “Hon? Can you call the dog?” he yelled from downstairs.
“Sure. Why?” I groggily answered.
“I think she has a tick,” was the response.
(In my head: “Are you kidding me? You can’t take care of this yourself? It’s early. And I’m sleepy. Wah!”)
I called Molly, but she wouldn’t come upstairs. So I hauled myself out of bed, grabbed a pair of tweezers and went in search of her. I got downstairs to see that the PH was in the bathroom (In my head: “He’s not even going to help?!?”) and Molly was sitting quietly in the kitchen with one of her bandanas around her neck. I got down on the floor with her and started rubbing her back looking for the tick.
“Where’s the tick?” I yelled toward the bathroom.
“It’s near the bandana,” he yelled back.
As I checked around the bandana, I noticed that it was tied pretty tightly around Molly’s neck. I pulled it off and noticed there was writing on it that read, “KAT, Will you marry me?” (In my head: “Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God!”)
I burst into tears and turned around to find the PH on one knee with a box in his hand. He said something (I was crying too hard to listen well, but it was along the lines of loving me and asking me if I would marry him) and then said, “Is that a yes?” (Apparently, he couldn’t hear the voice in my head screaming it). I said. “absolutely” between sobs and then tried to admire the beautiful ring through the tears in my eyes.
Then I started to call everybody I know and I felt bad that I only got him soccer shoes and shin guards and I cried some more… and this is definitely not the last you’ve read about this subject. (In my head: “Cannot stop thoughts from going so quickly. Must calm down and do work. I’m engaged! Whee!”)
Not a bad way to start a Monday at all.

Friday, October 20, 2006

It’s “Fall”

With the leaves falling faster than SJ in a wet parking lot, it’s about time to document just how graceful the two of us have become in our old age. I don’t think either one of us should be allowed to have children unless we hire people to carry them around for us!

I’m inspired by what just happened to me at work. I should subtitle this post “Why I’m Glad I Have My Own Office” because it means no one witnessed my dumb move. I stood up from my desk to get something, of course sending my chair rolling backwards in the process. Not realizing that happened, I just went to sit down and landed on the floor on my butt. Feeling like an idiot, I realized when I went to stand up that I managed to strain muscles in my arm and my back in my pratfall.

I don’t have any other specific incidents from this week (perhaps this is where SJ could chime in with her falling in the parking lot in front of two coworkers who didn’t stop to help story or her snow tubing story or her volleyball story… you get the idea). A teacher friend of mine, the former Miss P, has a story about falling down a flight of stairs in front of her entire class in the first week of school. And I have my infamous elevator story from college where I tried to be cool by putting my back against one wall of the elevator and kicking my legs up to put my feet against the opposite wall… without realizing the opposite wall was about two feet beyond mine. The friend who was with me was stunned as she watched me land in a heap on the floor.

This week, I elbowed the PH in the eye, knocked his glasses off with a book and kind of kicked the dog in the head when I turned around and began walking with realizing she was right behind me. All in all, an average week. Actually, I’d have to rate it above average, because any week SJ doesn’t end up in the emergency room is a good one in my book!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

raise your hand if you want to go to florida....

so here's a question. if you could go to florida for a couple of days -- work-related -- would you?

apparently, not everyone is raising their hands. otherwise, it wouldn't have fallen to me. let me just a take a minute to say "thank you very much, alex" because my fabulous co-worker is going on my behalf.

it's true that if i had been able to go, i would have had to fly into orlando, and i would not have missed the chance to go to jellyrolls, duelling piano bar at the happiest place on earth, because there's a piano player named scotty that is adorable and plays lovely (in the adverb sense). except that it would have been a little odd to go by myself. to a bar. i mean. the implications just sound bad.

but, j didn't want to go. and i can't justify working on a weekend when i spend 14 hours away from my home each day during the week. even if it means a trip to the beach. and a stopover in disney world.

so thank you, alex! i owe you one for going to florida in november for me. you're a peach!

Monday, October 16, 2006


so i was going to post about something else after my weekend. i was going to post about my new glasses. (super trendy! plum-color cat-eye frames!) and about the ineptitude of the kid working at lens crafters as he tried to convince me that my astigmatism was getting worse and i really should buy new prescription sun glasses as well as my new glasses. ("really? because my prescription is going from -3.25/-3.75 to -3.25/-3.50. Can you explain your math to me?")

and i was going to talk about the picking out frames process and how helpful the RH was during the entire process. ("try these. they're black. like you're old ones.") he actually was really helpful though, picking out the frames i went home with.

and then we got a phone call that put all things into perspective. sadly, his cousin's wife passed away on Saturday. she was just 28, and a sweetheart. none of us expected the news, since they live far away and we never really hear from them often. you've heard me lament his family gatherings because they're all so mean (most of them, anyway -- as you'd be reminded by my "oh this old thing - i threw it together from the goodwill") -- but these two weren't. they were incredibly sweet and just a fun-loving couple. they were just living their lives together, happy, having fun, surrounded by friends although slightly distanced from family who loved them.

today, my heart goes out to his cousin and the too-short time they had together. and it's forced me to put some things in perspective. like how much i love my family and friends (i love you, anonymous!) and how much i take for granted my days and spend way too much time at work, and concerned about silly things.

so i hope this doesn't depress you too much, but just serve as a reminder that life is so precious and so fleeting and do what you love with the little time you have.

Friday, October 13, 2006

My history as a Halloweenie

Noticing that today is Friday the 13th (ooh, spooky!) and feeling the chill in the air has gotten me to start thinking about what kind of costume to put together for the big event on Oct. 31.

Honestly, I’m not that big into the “holiday,” but being friends with SJ for so long has made me think about these things in advance. I’ve learned I can’t just throw on a wife beater shirt, some jeans and a leather jacket… and stand a chance against the Glinda the Good Witch/Tooth Fairy ensemble that includes glitter in some very… um, prominent places. In fact, my best costumes were inspired (or actually even put together) by the Queen of Costumes herself (that’s SJ for those of you without access to the dialogue in my head that made that connection).

One year, she helped me put together a “slutty Catholic schoolgirl” costume (my only excuse is that we were young…) that was a big hit in our office and at the police department (young enough to dress up, but too old for trick or treating meant we had to make our own fun that year). I think she was a St. Pauli Girl and let’s just say neither of us left much to the imagination (inner dialogue clarifies: “We looked like whores! With our boobs sticking out all over! Whores, I tell ya!”) Imagine running into your ex-boyfriend at a Halloween party wearing a short skirt, knee high socks and a shirt that wouldn’t have passed any nun’s inspection. Actually, hearing about how he was getting married the following week while I was still single was softened exponentially by knowing I looked damn good in that costume.

Another year, we were “80s Homecoming Queens” (apparently we didn’t have the self-esteem to aspire to be Prom Queens), complete with big hair, sashes and horrible, puffy dresses. We ran into a group of guys dressed like nerds that evening and, staying in character, refused their advances. Until– in a lesson that nerds everywhere should learn– they bought us alcohol.

So this year needs to be even better. I think Mollymoo has one of the best ideas ever (damn you, Molly!). She’s dressing as Lucy from “I Love Lucy” for her office costume contest.

Come to think of it, my company doesn’t do a costume contest, I’m not invited to any Halloween parties this year and I may not even be someplace that gets trick or treaters. So I don’t really need a costume. But I’ll be damned if the Tooth Fairy upstages me again!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006


Our Peekapoo, Molly, has quite the mouth on her, especially when the Pretend Husband is the one to voice her thoughts. It’s become standard for me to admonish, “Molly, language!” after the PH voices what he just knows she’s thinking. Here’s an exchange from the other night.
PH: “Oh, do you want to go out?”
Molly: “If I had hands, I’d slap you!”
(long pause)
PH: “This never gets old.”

Monday, October 09, 2006

WWJW: What Would Jesus Wear?

There’s just something about newspapers that inspires all of the wacky people of the world to put pen to paper or fingers to keyboards to share all of their conspiracy theories, religious conversions and stances on abortion. I once received a series of anonymous letters from a person concerned about the vast conspiracy that was the local police department. He made all sorts of wild claims that could not possibly be true. The best part about his “anonymous” tips is that he thought to put his address on the envelopes. I asked the police about him and found out the entire inside of the guy’s house was covered in aluminum foil to keep the government from listening to his thoughts. He even had a tin foil hat for when he ventured outside.

I received about 70 pieces of email at work today, but there was one that caught my eye just before I deleted it. The title was, “Doin’ the Stuff Jesus Did!” I didn’t actually read the press release, but it did get me thinking about my own life and how close it is to “Doin’ the Stuff Jesus Did!” And how can I do the “stuff” Jesus did?

I mean, I do wear sandals a lot, so I’m probably headed in the right direction. I think I eat enough fishes and loaves and I consume a lot of wine, so check, check and check. Jesus liked to hang out in marketplaces and I do visit the mall on occasion so I think I’m pretty good there.

Talked with the devil… hmmm, I’ve known some people who have been headed in that direction. Rebuilding destroyed cities? Well, I was something of a whiz back when “SimCity” was popular. He was definitely someone who thought about others before he worried about himself… and just last night I let the PH have the last of the ice cream.

This is about as far as my Catholic upbringing is going to take me in terms of knowing how Jesus (that’s “Jesus” for our Mexican readers) spent his time. Now excuse me while I go check my email… I’m dying to find out how I can “NaTuraLLy Nhance” the size of my “%PeeNiss@.”

Friday, October 06, 2006

They were out of milk, but I stocked up on EPTs

Having run into the grocerey store for a couple of items to complete our dinner last night (actually, we needed every item in the recipe, but SJ is the Martha Stewart Jr. who always has a stocked pantry and I want to pretend I at least had the can of corn we needed), I felt justified in using that self-checkout all the stores have now. You know, the one where you can stand at one end, scanning items and pretending you’re a cashier because your high school jobs consisted only of being a soccer referee and a waitress at a country club. And you can giggle to yourself as a lawyer stands at the other end bagging up your groceries (or it that just me?)

It’s a fun option when you have someone with you (I’m thinking of having kids just to have someone to bag for me while I scan…) but can get pretty harried when you’re alone. I scanned my six or so items, paid by credit card, then played the game where you run to the end of the belt (snatching your receipt along the way) and try to bag everything faster than the time it takes the person behind you to pull out and scan their store card and then start scanning their items.

Well, I lost that game last night. As I was frantically grabbing the boxes of Lean Pockets, the chicken breasts, the stuffing and the corn, I suddenly found myself reaching for… a pregnancy test?!? Obviously I don’t need one of those since the PH and I are waiting for marriage. Um, or because we use multiple forms of birth control (including living together long enough that sex is no longer done on a daily basis… or even a weekly basis… or even… oh, nevermind, it’s too depressing).

Anyway, I was frantically trying to finish bagging my order, but couldn’t resist glancing at the person behind me to see who was buying a pregnancy test in the grocery store. And there stood two guys with their bling and their pants hanging low enough to show off their boxers and worried expressions on their faces. I couldn’t figure out which one might be pregnant, but I laughed to myself as I left the store and pictured what the PH’s face might look like if I had accidentally grabbed the pregnancy test and brought it home with the groceries.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

My other car is a broom!

i have to buy a new car. we all saw it coming -- the day when flora would no longer live to climb another mountain, make it another exit up the parkway or weather another storm. and while she still is creeping and crawling her way through life, it's just barely. clearly, her heart isn't in it.

fun, fun times. so what better way to go car shopping than by dragging along your two best friends with you? that's right. saturday, after we all dropped molly off at the groomers (the pekeapoo, that is, not the fabulous pin up girl), we had breakfast, and then we went to the volkswagen dealership. we meant to just look around a little, but then we found the most non-agressive car salesman ever, who's sales pitch, as KAT can tell you -- included man-handling the hood of the car (Look, it doesn't break!) which is an interesting pitch, certainly.

he sheepishly stood around a few of the cars, so it was me that made the first move - "so can we test drive this puppy?" and he went off to fetch the keys.

despite what j might tell you, i didn't try to kill us and i did not seriously test the ability of the brakes. pshaw. you downshift on the highway once and suddenly he's all up in your business with a panicked expression.

but seriously - it was less painful than i would have thought, and chances are, we'll buy a volkswagen, and we'll buy it from that guy. we're still going to test drive some other options, and hopefully the experience will be less than painful. i'm going to go in with the "we want to pay this. can you do it? yes? okay. no? okay. 7 other vw dealerships in the 15 mile radius."

keep your fingers crossed for us and any car buying tips - this means you, stac! -- please send 'em on.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Why Mollymoo is the best!

Unless you are colorblind, a first-time reader or really, really not observant (I told the Pretend Husband I was dying my hair when he called and he still didn’t notice the new look when he got home!), you have probably noticed that our blog looks completely different than it did last week. And our most faithful readers (Hi, Anonymous!) can see that it even looks different than it did yesterday.

We have one person to thank for our new outfit… Her name is Mollymoo and she is the pin-up girl living the fabulous life right over here. She has a cutie son named Ned and a life full of all sorts of fun and sometimes, weirdness (an “ex-wanker” has kept her quite busy lately) but still found the time to pep up our humble little blog. And she did it with kindness, only once mentioning how very boring she found our original look (but so did we, so no offense taken!)

The best part about our transformation, I think, is the fact that we have never met Mollymoo, except in the new age, Internet-driven society kind of way. We stumbled upon her blog somehow, found some posts worth commenting about and, because Mollymoo is such a fabulous pin-up girl, she returned the favor by visiting us. Well, our hints about needing a new blog and not knowing what we were doing did not fall upon deaf ears. Despite not feeling well and having a son to look after, she spent part of her weekend giving our blog new clothes and part of Monday night adhering to our every wish.

We want to thank you Mollymoo for being such a fabulous Internet friend. Thanks so much for everything. You are the best!

Why my tires are not!

Knowing very little about cars (“$50 per spark plug? Sounds about right to me. Put it on my bill.”), I have always appreciated the fact that mine doesn’t give me very many problems. Sure, she must have mouthed off at someone to get egged once ($1,000 worth of damage to her pretty paint job for that one) and she did once rear-end a snippy little Ford that was going too slow for her taste, but generally, there haven’t been too many major problems.

You can see where this one is going… last night, driving home in the dark, on the highway, minding our own business, the Accord unwittingly ran something over and got whatever it was stuck in a tire. I was alerted to a problem by some vibrating, loud clangs and a lot of other noise I don’t care to ever hear again. Not wanting to get stranded on the highway, I pulled off at the next exit and found a well-lit parking lot.

I called the PH to come “rescue” me, but had the tire changed by the time he got there. I know there are plenty of people who would have waited for their knight in shining armor to ride up in his Chevy Cavalier and rescue them, or called the nice folks over at AAA for help, but I say everyone should know at least basic car care (how to change a tire, how to pump gas… ahem, New Jerseyites!... how to check the oil level, how to change the windshield wipers).

The good news is, the tires were just purchased in April and they come with some sort of guarantee so a new one shouldn’t cost me much at all. In the meantime, I’m proud of the fact that I will never have to spend an hour on the side of the road waiting for help (um, unless it’s something serious. But my car promised me that won’t ever happen. Right, Accord? Right?)