Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Words that make me feel pretentious when I pronounce them correctly



1. Endive. Seriously, I sometimes decline to order an endive salad because I feel like a jerk saying on-DEEVE instead of N-dive. And I like on-DEEVES, so this is a very sad situation.




2. Empire (as in empire-waisted dresses). Why it's pronounced ahm-PEER, I do not know. The truth is, I should not wear ahm-PEER waisted clothes because they make me look way preggers. On second thought: that could help me get a seat on the subway. Hmmmm...




3. Scorsese. I'm pretty sure it's pronounced skor-SEZ-ee. But everyone and his
movie-loving brother says skor-SAY-zee, so that's how I'm gonna say it, too. Sorry, Marty.

4. Prix fixe. Rather than order the pree feex, I will sometimes say, "I'll have the special."

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Observations after an afternoon spent picking up litter on the banks of the East River in Astoria


On Saturday, Mr. SZ and I joined a few other suckers community-minded folks to pick up the mounds of trash that have accumulated on the shoreline at Astoria Park. Here are some lessons learned from filling about a dozen jumbo Hefty bags with other people's crap.



1. Poland Spring is evil.

2. People are disgusting.

3. As evidenced by the number of condoms, safe sex is alive and well in Queens.



Hellgate Bridge, A
storia Park
(by me!)

4. Corona is the beer of choice for litterbugs.


5. People are pigs.

6. While they might make it easier to enjoy a fountain soda, drinking straws suck for the environment.

7. Plastic tampon applicators are evil.

8. People make very bad choices about how to dispose of their trash.


9. I love the sound of broken glass when I stomp through it in hiking boots. (No, really.)


10. It's probably more fun to pick up trash when it's not 85 degrees outside.


11. Styrofoam is evil.

12. If you come across bones on the banks of a river, it's best to assume they came from chickens.


Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Things that continue to baffle me


Ed. note: this is likely to be the first in a long series of lists of things I just don't understand (despite the attempts of many to explain them to me).

1. The scoring system in tennis

2. International currency exchange rates

3. Trigonometry and what it's good for

4. How calls placed to my cell phone manage to find me

5. Airline ticket prices

6. Two-time Oscar winner Hilary Swank




Monday, July 7, 2008

Songs I like even though I know I shouldn't



Disclaimer: I'm limiting this to songs from the past several years. If I included every mortifyingly cheesy AM radio hit from my youth, we'd be here all day.

1. "SexyBack," Justin Timberlake. The title makes me cringe. Plus, JT was a Mouseketeer, and I've never found him even remotely sexy. But damn, this song is catchy.

2. "Girlfriend," Avril Lavigne. "She's like so whatever / You could do so much better." Yes. Yes, I could.

3. "Cowboy," Kid Rock. Let me go on record: Kid Rock is a dirtbag of the highest order. That said, the line "I'm not straight outta Compton, I'm straight out the trailer" is freakin' genius.

4. "The Ketchup Song," Las Ketchup. I actually have this on my iPod. Sometimes it pops up when I'm using the elliptical machine at the gym, and it makes me surreptitiously dance. At least I think I'm being surreptitious. I'm not, like, rockin' out. Or am I? Maybe the people at the gym know me as the Old Lady Who Dances on the Elliptical. Uh oh.

5. "Beautiful," Christina Aguilera. This is the kind of song that would have spoken to me as a 12-year-old -- an age when my friends (yes, my friends) nicknamed me Emacia and Mommy Long Arms. As a grown-up, you'd think I'd be immune to the charms of a performer who wears whore makeup and spells the word "dirty" with two Rs. Not so.




Friday, July 4, 2008

The laziest list ever


Here for your Independence Day entertainment is an unedited list of the last 10 songs played on my iPod:

1. Franz Ferdinand – You Could Have It So Much Better

2. The Flaming Lips – Kim's Watermelon Gun

3. Silver Jews – Smith & Jones Forever

4. Arcade Fire – Black Mirror

5. They Might Be Giants – Ana Ng

6. XTC – Senses Working Overtime

7. Arcade Fire – Neon Bible

8. The Pogues – A Pair of Brown Eyes

9. The Clash – Hateful

10. De La Soul – The Magic Number



Thursday, July 3, 2008

Places where I have upchucked in public


1. Sunnyside, circa 1974. I'm not sure what it was about the home of Washington Irving that induced vomiting. Six-year-olds are probably just inclined to hurl.

2. Disneyland, 1976. I was sick during the entire trip to California, but I managed to dupe my mom into thinking I was well enough to visit the Magic Kingdom. I ended up puking into a garbage can near Cinderella's castle. After eating a hot dog. I still had a pretty good time. 

3. Rye Playland, 1986. Turns out the Caterpillar was too much for me. But hey, I'm not alone: the ride attendant told me he spent a lot of time hosing down the platform.

4. London, 1990. The aftermath of an evening at Gordon's Wine Bar in Covent Garden. Turns out you shouldn't drink four glasses of plonk on an empty stomach. (Who knew?) My memories of this are understandably hazy, but I'm pretty sure I threw up on the tube. I definitely threw up on the walk home from the tube. I recall trying to speak in a British accent so people would think I was a stupid drunk English girl instead of a stupid drunk American one. How patriotic of me.

5. Brussels, 2004. If you really want the story, please see Item 2 on the list of my all-time worst vacations. Additional detail for the masochistic: I puked in the Place Royale outside the Museum of Modern Art. My passport should probably be revoked.