Tuesday, August 28, 2007

You've Got... Company!

For as insanely great as working in your pajamas curled up with a monster cup of coffee sounds, it is oftentimes not all it's cracked up to be.

I joined the leagues of the mighty telecommuters in 2005. I'm just 2 months shy of 2 years working remotely. "Remotely" is not a word to be taken lightly... in fact, it was a much larger adjustment than I had ever imagined. There are still days when I can feel my social skillset eroding away, bit by bit.

Evo's always bringing in the latest and greatest ways to keep in touch, and today was no different. Enter Ustream! We were able to hear and see each other for much of the day today... making it a very close "office buddy" alternative. There are a few kinks to work on, but other than that, it was very cool for a first run. I have even managed to link it live here into Steel Grey Pittsburgh - check it out off on the right side there and see if I'm around.

It's always nice to have company.

Thanks Evo - I probably would have lost my mind a year and a half ago without you.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Weekend Update... And, Oh Yeah, I'm Going Straight to Hell.

A little late for an update on this weekend's activities, but I've been a busy girl!

Saturday's activities included a juggling adventure, and, of course, a music adventure!

If you haven't seen the Shoebox Tour yet, GO! These guys are incredible - a variety of juggling skills on display. A couple things I can do (but I'm quite the mediocre juggler and proud of my minimal skills), many things I'd sure like to try, and several that made my jaw hit the floor. To top it all off, everything was set to music of the most interesting variety. Matthew and I actually got called up on stage to demonstrate one of the "10 New And Amazing Great Juggling Tricks..." and Matthew being the natural showman that he is, was invited to stay up on stage for a round of juggling musical chairs. Good, good times.

Now that I've seen some serious contact juggling in action, I've really got the itch to get started.

After the juggling show, it was off to see Squirrel Nut Zippers at Mr. Smalls. I'm still feeling a little wierd about the "costumage" shall we say, but other than that, they were fantastic! Definitely a different experience from the other shows I've been frequenting lately, but a good one nonetheless.

Now that I've gotten this far, time to address the second half of this post's title. I bought size 0 jeans and refrigerated (premade) cookie dough in my out and abouts today. I'd like a window seat, please.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Size Check, Please?

Last night I finally got so agitated by the state of my jeans that I went shopping.

By state of them, I don't mean they're destined for the garbage, or so worn in places they've become dangerous. No... they're falling off.

I have spent the past few weeks in various states of amazement as all of my jeans progressed from "a little loose" to "if I don't wear a belt they'll slide down" to "if I don't wear a belt they'll fall completely off, but if I do wear a belt it folds the waistband". Uncomfortable, and to be quite honest, dumpy.

So Gap got me again for $58. Yeowch. But I'm a sucker for their jeans because they actually make jeans that FIT.

Speaking of fit, I left there with jeans in a size 1. I haven't worn anything that small since freshman year of college, and it's a vast departure from what I have been wearing. Which made me pause yesterday, and is still occupying my brain today.

Three thoughts:

1) I read an article a while back that examined clothing manufacturer size charts, and what those same sizes actually measured at decades ago. They're vastly different. Has a size 1 changed so much since the last time I bought pants that it only appears I've skipped a few sizes?

2) I'm starting to think I may have a tapeworm.

3) I'm standing on the next scale I find.

I'm off, time to start this day. Housework this morning, fun this afternoon and evening.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Random Morning Thoughts

A few notes on what's running through my head early this morning:

* Yoga is amazing. Post-show, however, it is excruciating.
* Pigeon pose has pretty much destroyed my hips for the day.
* I need / want to eat more artichokes. They're just so fun and delicious.
* All of my dreams last night involved bugs or spiderwebs or both. Disturbing. Will have to look that up later.
* Contact Juggling belongs on my list of things to do. There's another project to get started on. I've wanted to do that for a really long time.


Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I'll Have the Grilled Cheese and a Sippy Cup, Please

A lunchtime post today - because I didn't get a chance to last night (home at 2 am) and because I won't get a chance to later (yoga and dinner).

That, plus I still want to capture some of the glow and, well, pain.

Last night's show - Against All Authority, Streetlight Manifesto, Reel Big Fish and Less Than Jake - was phenomenal. My second show on this tour (Buffalo was my first), and honestly I wish I could make tonight and tomorrow night's shows (the last two of the tour)... unfortunately Scranton and DC are a wee bit far to be trekking out on school nights.

I made a bit of a mistake during this show - I assumed the crowd would function similarly to Buffalo. I realized a little bit too late that this crowd actually felt more like a fraction of a second away from a full-on fist fight.

I am sorely mistaken on my assumption today (horrible pun intended). These ribs, they hurt. They hurt bad. The rest of me sort of hurts too, but I don't feel too out of the ordinary. Just a little stiff; the post-show rust in my joints I have come to expect. And a sore throat. My companions did not fare much better - one kicked square in the head, the other with a lovely shiner to show for last night's activities.

Needless to say, shows like that reduce you to grilled cheese and sippy cups from Eat 'n Park. Luckily enough for us, they're more than happy to oblige at 1 am.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

The Power of Words

I have discovered the joy and heartache of a brand new book, at the recommendation of my yoga teacher.

She brought it to class a few weeks ago, and I happened to see it out the corner of my eye during my last jaunt to the bookstore to purchase (you guessed it) the last Harry Potter. Since I can never read just one book at a time anyway, I added it to my stack.

I started it a couple of weeks ago, about the same time I started Harry Potter, but I was in such a race (with myself and two others) to finish, I fell a little behind on the new book. I now wish that hadn't happened, because right around the time I made that purchase was the same time I really NEEDED the book. Without even realizing it.

A couple days ago I plucked this book back off the shelf to give it another go, and started over. Reading a few pages here and there, slowly bringing myself from the world of wizards and magic into someone else's real-life story of struggle, learning and discovery. And last night, I fell so deep into it at one point I was certain that someone had tipped a bucket of ice water over my head. And when the water was gone, proceeded to throw the bucket square at me. And then kick me in the shins.

Parallels between this book and my life at present leaped off the pages. I needed a pencil, and fast. I haven't needed a pencil since the first time I read The Dharma Bums, and that's been many years ago.

I grabbed a pencil and dove back in. I'm making a mess of this book, and damn does it feel good.

The book? Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. Thanks, Elizabeth, for sharing.


Sunday, August 19, 2007

Pig Roast '07

870 Miles, way too much food and a radioactive facial sunburn later, "Da Roast" '07 is complete.

I'm tired. Really, really tired. Stuart made approximately 230 new friends, and I got to catch up with a handful of friends I haven't seen in a year, and a couple I haven't seen in two years.

Shower completed, 8 layers of grime removed. Cup #2 of peppermint tea awaits.

Friday, August 17, 2007

For anyone curious...

I realized today that my last post was a little vague. It was full of good intention, with some emotion to back it up - but for anyone truly interested in the evolving I've been doing, I thought I'd take a minute to post two lists.

List One: What I have been up to.
List Two: What I'll be up to soon.


What I have been up to? In the past few weeks, well, throwing a sopping wet towel... in. Not necessarily in order, but as close as I'm going to get past midnight on a Friday morning:
* Came back to my blog with fresh eyes
* Started a Google map and beer project
* Saw The Pietasters
* Visited Niagra Falls
* Went to another city, in another state, for a concert (Against All Authority, Streetlight Manifesto, Reel Big Fish, Less Than Jake)
* Stretched my ears again, finally, after almost 2 years at 12s. And I skipped a size and went straight to 8s. Which I know I shouldn't have done, but I was just too ready.
* Ran a soap show day all by myself
* Finally decided on my next tattoo set design and placement
* Went to Warped
* Saw Dave Matthews in concert

Which brings me to list two, and what I'll be up to soon. No rhyme, reason or order to this list. Just things on a list I want to get to:
* Actually get the aforementioned tattoos
* Stretch my ears to a 6 without waiting 2 years
* See the Shout It Loud Tour again (already have tix for this so it's ON! LTJ, here we come!)
* See as many concerts as I can manage
* Clean out my wardrobe
* Find a replacement for my most favorite belt that broke about 3 years ago. I still pine for it. It was the perfect belt.
* Learn to ride and buy a scooter. Preferably a Vespa. Preferably red.
* Start taking vitamins again
* Kick some ass and take some names and finally start that podcast
* Stop asking for a visit, and finally come to terms with the fact that I'm never going to get one.

I expect these lists to grow from here on out. Now you know.

Monday, August 13, 2007

I've been out and about...

Fall is on its way. I can feel it.

Was the tilt of the sun a little bit different today? The air a little less humid? The sky bright blue, but just a little more 'crisp' than it has been? Yes. All of the above. The neighbor's sycamore tree has already started to drop, as has the chestnut hovering over my back deck. The dog days of summer are nearly over.

I'm very much a Fall person. I'd rather be wearing a sweater and jeans than tank tops and shorts. Time to shed those dreaded (but necessary in Pittsburgh humidity) clothing articles. It's almost time to switch out of those colors that never really agree with me and back into the cozy creams, dark greens, burnt reds and blacks that I feel so much better in.

In speaking of change, a step back to what I've been up to the past few weeks.

A while back, I promised myself I was going to start doing things I've been wanting to do for a long time. Things I've been holding myself back from, things that I was being held back from by outside sources, things I just never got around to doing but should have.

I've started to do some of those things, take them on so to speak. And I'm just getting started. I've been having the time of my life the past few weeks. Taking a day or two off work here and there, something which I NEVER did before unless absolutely necessary (even when I had plenty of days). Going places I've never been and seeing things I've wanted to see. All the while trying to come to terms with things in my past that haunt me, and things in my present that torture me. Attempting not to have some sort of crisis in my 30s.

It has been an interesting journey so far. For those of you interested, I'll let you know what happens from here.