A geeky girl living in the big city, making her way, the only way she knows how... no wait, that's The Dukes of Hazzard. Who am I again? Oh yeah, a pop culture obsessed writer, publishing person, and occasional nerd. And I'm getting married. I talk about that, too.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

This is me

Ignore the fact that I've never bought anything at Nordstrom's, and I can't afford anything with the word "Dior" on it. It's still a pretty good representation, don't ya think? Check out the braid, and the pouty lips! And whee! I'm traveling!

Yup, heading out west to Denver for the long Labor Day weekend. Blogging to be sparse, unless we see some really cool stuff, and then I'll share. Promise! Really cool stuff to include Big Bad Voodoo Daddy playing at the Taste of Colorado festival on Sunday, plans to finish up the Fourth Shadow Shard TF, and the ooooh-VIP tour of the Coors Brewery on Friday.

Oh, and thanks for all the votes and opinions on the tattoo vs. piercing discussion. It's still 20 or so pounds away, maybe more, but I'm thinking navel ring. It's just about as far as I think I can push my mother. A tattoo might kill her. And we don't want that. Besides, what girl doesn't want more jewelry? I wonder if Tiffany's makes belly button rings?

Monday, August 28, 2006

Woot! New keychain!

It may not look like much, but that, my friends, is the sign of my having lost 10% of my body weight since I first joined my cult. Woohoo! My clothes all seem to fit differently -- from things I haven't tried to wear in ages popping out at me from the closet to more recent purchases feeling baggy and down right dowdy (if not entirely pull-off-able!). Had a good talk with my leader after the meeting, since I was a little concerned that the proper weight range for my height was still another 50 pounds away, and he's got me looking only another 20 pounds down the road. Which sounds so doable, in fact, that I'm seriously debating that big reward I was promising myself. It's still up in the air, but what do you think: tattoo or piercing? Vote below!


Evil quiz

Ooooh... How Devilish are you?

You and evil: where do you REALLY stand?

Now you're on to something interesting. You're good, but with just enough evil in you to get the job done. Fantastic! You join the ranks of goodies such as Han Solo, Batman, Spike, and (Captain) Jack Sparrow.Your friend in Devilish is the heroine, Jane Jarvis.Find out more at my site.
Take this quiz!

Sunday, August 27, 2006

And home again, Jeeves

Back from what wasn't exactly the best beach weekend ever. Lots and lots of rain, but I did get to sleep in some, and finished two books -- big ole hardcovers that I had lugged down with me, so I was glad to have read them both (if not the two other paperbacks I had with me, just in case). One was another Nora Roberts, Blue Smoke, and the other was Widdershins by Charles de Lint, which I really liked. It has that urban fantasy thing that I really enjoy, a la Holly Black, Neil Gaiman, and others. American and European mythology, all mixed up and living among us. I'd read a few others of de Lint's books, so it felt a bit like I knew the characters vaguely, or that I knew someone who knew them, which was a nice feeling to have. Oh! And he started the book with this great epigraph (not sure if that's the exact right word for it, but it's close), that I liked so much I'm quoting it in its entirely. If you like, you can go here and check out some of de Lint's other books set in and around his fictional town of Newford. (He's got an official site, too, but that only lists his complete bibliography, not the handy divisions that Wikipedia has). Anyway, enjoy:
Remember how it was when we were young? It was like a dance, couples pairing up, together one month, the next everybody has a new partner, sometimes from within your social circle, other times a stranger brought in, but there was always this ebb and flow, like a tide, as though dating and love were a game of musical chairs, except you played it with your heart.

As I've gotten older, I've found that we seem to divide into two camps: the ones who keep a partner and settle down, maybe have kids, maybe buy a house; and the ones who stay in the musical-chairs dance and end up living on their own, who are on their own for longer and longer periods of time until they grow to like their solitary lifestyle -- or at least accept it. Some keep a hope buried for that certain someone to fall into their lives, but nobody's really looking anymore. Or they're not looking hard.

It's hard to pinpoint exactly when that happens.

For me, hope runs eternal, even though my relationships never really work out in the long run. Maybe I set my sights too high. Maybe I'm just hopeless. I don't know. Or maybe I just never met the right woman, for all the times I thought I did.

Or maybe I did meet the right woman, but I never knew it and went out with her sister or her friend instead.

Or maybe I did know it, but I told myself it was never going to work out...

Friday, August 25, 2006

Once more unto the beach!!

How is it that I never used the above title before? It's so pithy and perfect!

Anyway, yes, I'm heading down to the beach this afternoon, catching a ride with my sister is her sweet little silver convertible (although it may rain, so poo), for my last summer shore weekend. Got a library book to finish by Monday, a Nora Roberts sure-to-enjoy novel, and a YA title, just because it's cute and light. Was hoping to catch a movie at the cheapo little $3 theatre the next town up from ours, but the theatre's showing "You, Me, & Dupree," as opposed to something I actually want to see. Maybe I'll borrow my sister's car (no, not the convertible. That will likely NEVER happen) and drive up to the multiplex and catch "Pirates 2", "The Devil Wears Prada," or any one of the other dozens of movies I feel like I haven't seen this summer. "The Illusionist" looks good, although that's more of a fall film than a summer one, and I still need a little light summer cheese. MMmmmmmm... cheese.

So, to one and all. Have a great weekend, and I'll see ya next week!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Lists lists lists lists Liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiists!

So, via Popwatch, I read about some guy named James Gunn (directed a little movie called Slither, apparently, and is married to some chick in a so-they-tell-me-it's-funny tv show called The Office) who made up a list of his 25 favorite tv characters. And he's got some on there that I can agree with, so woot. And then he went and forgot a certain Captain Tightpants, and the peeps got all up in arms and went blogging about it. And then this other guy felt he had the right to make his own list. Which, ok, not bad. Lots more I agree with, and, oh yeah, the funny. So, a few of my own. No caveats except I have a mind like a sieve and a sucky memory.

  1. Xander. Peoples have said Buffy and Spike already, but for that speech in Season 7 alone, to Dawn, which damn near makes me weep just thinking about it... my man Xander.
    They'll never know how tough it is, Dawnie, to be the one who isn't chosen. To live so near to the spotlight and never step in it. But I know. I see more than anybody realizes because nobody's watching me. I saw you last night. I see you working here today. You're not special. You're extraordinary.
  2. Keith Mars. Again, VM and Logan have been noted, but Keith and Veronica's relationship is the heart of Veronica Mars, and when VM thought he was dead, and woke up from a dream thinking he was back, but it wasn't him cooking bacon, it was Logan, and then Keith DID show up? So good.
  3. Oh! I can't remember his name, but the guy with the tail from that episode of The X-Files, you know, one of the funny ones? You're going to make me google it, aren't you? Fine! It's Eddie Van Blundht, played by Darrin Morgan, in the episode "Small Potatoes." Funny guy. Morphs into Mulder and mocks him mercilessly. I need to see that again.
  4. Lorelei Gilmore on Gilmore Girls.
  5. What's her name on Wonderfalls, the one who talked to kitschy knicknacks.
  6. Wash. Oh, Wash.
  7. Marshall on Alias.
  8. Crichton on Farscape, especially when he was crazy. Unless maybe I really liked
  9. The Scorpius in Crichton's head on Farscape.
  10. MacGyver. To this day, I still remember to smoosh up some heart medicine pills in a bubble gum wrapper, stick them to a door, and throw a shoe at it in order to blow the lock.
  11. Faceman on The A-Team. MJ will protest that the true star of the show was H.M. Murdoch, but my heart belonged to Dirk Benedict. Oh, Starbuck. Before you turned into a girl.
  12. Hawk on Buck Rogers. I can't explain.
  13. This is going to haunt me, I know, but Bo on The Dukes of Hazzard. Another childhood crush.
  14. David Addison on Moonlighting.
  15. And Autolycus on Hercules and Xena. Because I love me some Bruce Campbell.

See? I left myself room for ten more, because I know I'll come back in a few days/hours/minutes and wonder how I could have forgotten one of my favorites.

Vintage Optimism

So, I've been thinking of my Style Statement lately, both in connection with wanting some new clothes for the fall and my business trip, but also in terms of hopefully soon decorating a new apartment. I can't help but keep thinking of these gorgeous, beautiful bookcases I saw at a Thrift Store off Gramercy Park (so yeah, not really "thrifty"), which were in the Mission style and so, so, so pretty. Like this. And then, last night, much like counting sheep, I was thinking of how I would build a narrow table/bookshelf for the back of my couch. Which, in my dreamstate, will be perfectly stained and hold artfully arranged little knicknacks. Although, yes, I suppose I could just go buy one. But then that's not Vintage, is it? No!

I was also very encouraged by an article in this week's Entertainment Weekly called "Back to Old School", which showed off some stuff from a few upcoming period films (including Hollywoodland, The Black Dahlia, and Idlewild), and also mentioned our gal Christina Aguilera (have I mentioned the catchy new CD? I have? Oh, good). In connection with whom, they featured these red shoes. Totally Vintage Optimism, right? I know, they kinda look like someone skinned a Muppet. A dirrty, trashy Muppet. I want them. If I wear them with a little black pencil skirt, and a black cashmere sweater set of some kind, it'll be just perfect 40s noir. Ooh! I even have a little black net feathery hat thing!

Although, to be fair, there's a difference between costume and clothing, and if I wear all of the above, I may as well go to a Halloween party. I'll find a way to work it into my regular attire, I'm sure of it.

And that, ladies and gents, is the "Optimism" part of the equation! And speaking of, I'm off to hope we get the new apartment we fell in love with this past weekend.

Monday, August 21, 2006

I'm repeating myself

But you must read this. I've just wiped the tears from my desk after finishing it. It's so sad and so beautiful.
Which in turn brings me to the subject I am telling you about tonight, or today, or whatever the hour and color. It's the story of one of those perpetual survivors--an expert at being left behind.

It's just a small story really, about, among other things:
* A girl
* Some words
* An accordionist
* Some fanatical Germans
* A Jewish fist fighter
* And quite a lot of thievery

I saw the book thief three times.
Buy it. Read it. Share it. Remember the power of words.

Dog Days of August

In consideration of the quiet randomness of the delightfully named "dog days of summer" (although I could do with things a leeetle less busy at work) a collection of entirely random stuff collected and/or discussed over the last few days:
  • ZeFrank. Enjoy The Show, watch some eductaional videos, participate n' stuff. Recommended by Tres and Ron!
  • What's your Style Statement? Mine's Vintage Optimism. Soon to be a book!
  • Every little thing she does is magic. Not what you're thinking of.
  • Read this. It's sad but worth it.
  • Listen to the new Christina Aguilera. It's swingy and torchy, partly. I like. (I can't, however, find the best link to include that doesn't immediately start playing loudly with no option on turning off the sound, so just go to iTunes. Listen to "Candyman."

I had planned to include a lot more, but I have a meeting to run to, and loads of phone calls to make this afternoon about my apartment search. Exciting stuff! Laters!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Every little thing I do

From today's horoscope:
It's like there's a giant magnifying glass on your life right now, and every little thing you do is definitely magic! Your slightest movement could cause some major earthquakes that shift around the status quo and make people notice you in a whole new light. Everything is starting to fall into place in terms of your health or physical routine. It's about time you realized that if you put real effort into something, real results will come out of it.
Another exciting number regarding my cult: 17 pounds. Woot! And I've been very good about getting to the gym, trying out a yoga class and going swimming, and plan on hitting another class tonight that Courtney recommended.

Still waiting for more news on HtDaS. On pins and needles, still trying to be patient and not pester my agent, at the same time as I've mostly tried to keep things to myself (and, well, blabbed about it here) so as not to jinx things. My sister told my cousin about it last weekend, but presented it as much more of a fait accompli than the less-than-sure thing it is at the moment. I may have been a wee bit too rambunctious in my denials, as if placating the voodoo gods who might otherwise call down a hex on me. Sorry, cuz!

What else? Booked my flights to Germany for the book fair in October, and have tagged on an additional week in Prague. Can't wait! If anyone's been, I'd be grateful for ideas or thoughts about things to see and do. I have a big, beautiful picture book, but it's more coffee table book than guidebook, so I'll have to do my reading beforehand, and take notes. Still, I'll be sure to stop by the location of the famed Defenstration of Prague. I mean, how could I miss THAT?

I have my eye on a new dress to buy for the trip -- just waiting for it to go on sale -- and if other recent exploratory dives into my closet hold true, I may be able to get some use out of some older suits and such too, which were otherwise languishing in the "I can't quite fit into these right now" section. I will allow myself a treat when I hit the next WW milestone, though. I made Doyce promise to take to me to the big, glorious mall next to the DSW next time I'm in Denver, and I think there will have to be some shopping being done. Again, I say... woot!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

I should be reading submissions...

Instead, a few thoughts on family.

I mean, what is it about them? Their unerring ability to remind you, every single time you see them, of the worst you've ever been. Had the big Shore Party shindig this past weekend, and I couldn't help but notice on several occasions that being around my family entices me to behave as they expect me to behave. It's one of them thar never-ending cycles.

Which isn't to say the weekend was awful, or anything like that. It went rather well, I think. But still...

There are times I regret my big Irish Catholic family, and the at-times ridiculous closeness of us all. It's easier to be blase about a repetitive comment made by the somewhat annoying family member if it's only made occasionally, rather than every weekend.

For the record, yes, I like to sleep in. And yes, in years past, when I was less than diligent about my sunblock application, I would sometimes miss a spot. Does this need to be brought up in conversation every-single-time I see certain family members? No, I think not.


All that said, between one thing and another, I think the weekend after next will be my last Shore weekend for the year, unless, as threatened, I gather the geeks for a gamefest weekend. But that'll be less beachy than autumnal. So there.

Friday, August 11, 2006

This is cool

Via the delectable Miss Courtney, this exciting news:
The Perseid meteor shower, an annual celestial event beloved by millions of skywatchers around the world, returns to the night sky this coming week. But moonlight will interfere somewhat with the view.
And so, of course, ardent star-gazer that I am, I'm making my way to the Jersey Shore for a long weekend, with plans to stay up late on Saturday night and do a little sky-watching. There may be, in fact, some sort of party planned around the event. It may involve Jungle Speed and the Bad Dogs. I can say no more.

Have a great weekend, all!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Well, fine, Iskander...

I'll just tag myself!
  1. Grab the nearest book.
  2. Open the book to page 123
  3. Find the fifth sentence
  4. Post the text of the next 3 sentences on your blog along with these instructions

Don't you dare dig for that "cool" or "intellectual" book in your closet! I know you were thinking about it! Just pick up whatever is closest, then tag three people.

So, from "Angels Fall" by Nora Roberts

"She must have been wearing earrings. I wasn't paying enough attention."
"I'd say you're wrong about that."
Woot! How's that for excitement?

Yeah, I know. Hard to say, right? It's in the middle of a scene where a witness to a murder is telling the local sheriff what she saw. Anyway, I'm a fan of Roberts. Her books are always entertaining, with a great love story, and she writes some of the best second bananas in the business.

I'm almost done with "Angels Fall", and one of the books I'm looking forward to reading this weekend at the beach is "Journey to a Revolution" by Michael Korda. Here's three sentences from page 123.
The eyes beneath them were flinty. Very slowly I let the camera down on my chest and held my hands up. Right then and there I decided that MI-6 was going to have to do without my photographs.
Cool, huh?

Ok, I tag Yi Shun (because she needs to get back into the habit of posting more often!), Dave (because I know he'll do it), and Doyce.

I am unpopular

Ah well. Added my two cents to a discussion on Miss Snark, and came out of it reeling. Let's see: I was called boorish, petty, surly, and vindictive. Whee! It's a banner day in ktbuffy-land.

Years after the fact (wow, has it been that long?), someone anonymously calling me names doesn't change how I think. I'm quite certain I did the right thing in the situation. Will I rethink future comments on Miss Snark? Perhaps. I'm not about to go clarifying the matter for the commenters there any further. I was trying to add to a discussion, and, in so doing, set myself up for any matter of responses. That's what the internet is all about, ain't it, kids?

In the end, it doesn't matter. I do my job well, and my clients and business associates appreciate it. Miss Snark, in her inimitable way, says it six or seven times a day, but the crux of it is: each agent's different. If you're a writer, you want to find the best one for you. For my clients, at the moment, it's me. Yay!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

I never presume...

That all my lovely dedicated readers are clicking on all the useful, highly entertaining links over there to the side (*gestures wildly, like a drunk Joan Rivers*). So, when I read something that makes me laugh out load, I bring it to you, dear readers, in this very lovely forum.
Nobody said, "Don, this is extremely stupid, please don't do it." Nobody taught Don to dance, oh no. They just sat idly by while he used the same series of "turn to the camera, remove hands from pockets, hold out hands as if handing over a full punch bowl, clench fists and squinch eyes shut to relive a painful memory or bowel movement, punch the air" blocking moves over and over again. They let Duckie dress him in a sparkly tuxedo, and they let him shoot an interminable sex scene with both Lori Singer and Mystery Girl (not at the same time...thank God), intercut with footage of Dweezil Zappa trying not to laugh in Don's face, like, did Dweezil break curfew so many times that Frank had to ground him by making him work on Heartbeat? Him and Moon?
The genius Sarah Bunting, one of the founders of Television Without Pity, takes on the 1980s Don Johnson "music video" Heartbeat. I happily admit I've never seen this, or if I did, it's far enough back in a pastel and neon shoelace haze of the early 80s to have passed entirely from my memory. But I know the dance move she's talking about. I can picture it. And that? That scares me.

So, something cool to rinse the mental images from your head. Via De, check it out! Treadmill dancing!

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Historical adventures

From the opening pages of my 1996 journal
16 July 1996
I set sail today for Egypt... actually, it was just another day at work, though with my new journal, I feel as though I ought to be having great adventures. Unfortunately I fear these pages will soon be filled with trifles of work, and none of the excitement a travel journal should contain. These ideas, if not the wording of them, may also be due to my reading of Janes Austen's Mansfield Park. Yesterday was much the same, as tomorrow also promises to be. Oh, to be actually on one of the grand old steamers of the transAtlantic line, bound for the unknown, the unexpected, the unpredictable! My closest chance of that is a journey down to Delaware in 2 weeks for Colleen's goodbye party. She's to try her luck in Hollywood -- that would be an adventure to rival darkest Africa!
And it went on and on for several months, as my young Brit passenger sailed to Egypt, met up with various characters, of my own fictional creation, and of other's, and ended up engaged, I think. Another example
20 July
The excitement of this evening's entertainment has kept me awake far past my proscribed bedtime. After a day spent on deck with Mother whilst I repeatedly tried to encoutner the sun, and she to keep me from it, a special athletic exhibition was arranged which kept our attention focused on other matters. Father competed in a shooting event, aiming at clay pigeons thrown from the bow, though I found myself watching for Mr. O'Shea, who competed in several running events, placing in all. I was able to extend my congratulations to him at the celebratory dinner afterwards, which he took with much modesty, and complimented me as well upon my own small accomplishments in the archery event. I look forward to the masquerade ball which is to culminate our voyage with a mixture of anxiety, excitement, and dread. While I would regret the ending of such a pleasant journey, I wonder at what new adventures may unfurl both at the ball and afterwards...
So yes, were there ever any doubt of my writerly pretensions, there you have it. Proof.

Friday, August 04, 2006

I want.

It's just so pretty! And on sale! (The bag, not the girl.) There may be some shopping this weekend. I was talking to my yoga guru (yogu?) last night about rewards for me on my weight loss progress, and along with something bigish when I hit my goal weight/size, I told her my along-the-way rewards were in the realm of shopping. And while, ok, a bag isn't something where sizes change depending on wieght loss, but... but... it's so PRETTY!

It's from Brooklyn Industries, and as well as their numerous stores in, you guessed it, Brooklyn, they also have one downtown in Soho. I may find myself doing a little shopping there this weekend. I'm also on the lookout for a fab couple of wrap dresses. I like this one from Ann Taylor Loft, and I probably will end up getting a solid color one before I leave for Germany in October, but I also want something a little fun, a little crazy. Something in a wild print unlike anything else I have. One of the girls I had lunch with last week suggested a little shop in Soho for something like what I'm looking for, so since I managed to get my laundry and the first stage of cleaning my apartment done today, I have more time this weekend to wander down thataways. Which is conveniently located near to the Film Forum where the swashbuckling double feature is being held.

Something else to look forward to this weekend: a look back! Yep, I will once again be cracking open my teen angst diaries for a historical blog. Stay tuned!

Sure, I could go see "Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man's Chest"

Or I could see one of these fabulous classic swashbucklers this weekend. I'm so very very tempted. There's so many great films available over the next couple of weeks -- Robin Hood, Captain Blood, The Court Jester -- it's hard to pick! But still -- live piano accompaniment? How cool is that?!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Dear god!

This? Is Tom Petty! Tom.Petty. Dear god, man, what HAPPENED to you? You look like a cheap Muppetized version of yourself! It's like something out of bad horror film starring a plastic Hollywood-aged wax figure of yourself in another decade. Man! I don't like to recommend plastic surgery, but go get that taken care of!

Excuse me, I have to go wash my eyeballs out with bleach. As you were.

To the tune of "Bonanza"

Da dada da da dada da an update!
Da dada da da dada da da dada da da!

Sorry, that was silly. I've been bad lately about posting because I needed to get some other writing done, and if I was writing on my blog, I felt guilty about not being creative elsewhere. But today I finished it, and sent it where it needs to be, and if that still sounds cagey, I apologize. I'm still a little stuck in the "I don't want to jinx it" phase. Again, though, I hope to have capital N-news soon.

So, what else is going on? Not much. Been reading stuff for work and having some lunches -- which reminds me of three other emails I need to send. Gah.

Tried to make a wrap sandwich today, but wraps are very hard to, you know, wrap around stuff. It kept breaking! I don't know how those sandwich guys do it. I suspect I'll be eating my lunch with a fork today.

Oh! And last chance, for any of my local readers. Private yoga class tonight with the divine Courtney G., if anyone's interested in trying it out. (I was going to say "trying her out," but that sounded dirrty.) Send me an email.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

"This isn't good cop, bad cop..."

"This is fag and New Yorker."

Ha! Just finished watching the DVD of "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang," and the above was one of the many lines that made me laugh out loud in my darkened, cool apartment.

Where, I'm sure you'll be glad to hear, our old friend Wee Murphy has made a re-appearance. Then again, the fellow I saw tonight was rather speedy. It may have been Wee Murphy's cousin Mickey "Flash" Gordon. Oh joy.

Speaking of cool, yes, you may have heard NYC is in the grip of a ridonkulous heat wave. Imagine turning your oven on to 100 degrees, and stepping inside it. It was totally like that. As a treat tonight, I had one of these, which was... oh... like sweet, sweet sin wrapped in cookie crumbs and ice cream. On a steeeeeeeek.
Anyway, go rent "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang." Val's looking a hell of a lot pudgier than when I lusted for him in "The Saint," but he's back to the funny of "Real Genius."

And Robert Downey, Jr.'s an almost perfect noir narrator. Aside from when he's not. Which is also funny.

Go see it! Here's a teaser. Trust me, it's even funnier than it looks.