Wednesday, February 24, 2010

lazy weekend.

I want it to be Spring! I want to go camping in Colorado and ride my bike and smell like sunscreen and slurp popsicles and eat at every Vietnamese restaurant on Classen!

My roommates were gone this past weekend and I had an empty house all to myself.

Somewhere between sprawling out on the couch to watch a zillion episodes of The West Wing (I am totally obsessed. How can I weezle my way into the White House?) while making a huge,unconscientious mess baking Cinnamon Sugar Banana Nut Bread (recipe here - add pecans, mini chocolate chips work best) and listening to Pete Yorn + Scarlett Johansson full blast (eh, it's an alright duo), I was reminded of a Sex and the City episode where Carrie's grappling with the decision to move in with Aiden...

There's this loveable line where she talks about the quirky things she does when alone in her apartment - eating stacks of saltine crackers with jelly while standing up in the kitchen reading fashion magazines.

It was definitely a stacks of saltine crackers weekend where I reveled in being 23 and independent and weird.

Oh books, they make you crave adventure.
Just finished reading about hot North African sand in The Sheltering Sky and now due to reading Pillars of the Earth (thanks to my Christmas present from Paige!) I'm on to wanting to visit every ancient and obscure cathedral in Europe. Seriously, I really want to go to Morocco and I love old buildings.

Making my bed every morning makes me happier, more productive. It really is the little things.

Profiles on Tina Fey and Timothy Geithner in Vogue - I love it when magazine interviews aren't boring and repetitive.

I've come to the conclusion that being bored is not becoming to me.

To be interesting, be interested.

And did I mention I love The West Wing. So smart! I'm actually excited about the health care debate Thursday.

Joannie Rochette's figure skating performance - now that's what the Olympics are all about. Even Scott Hamilton choked up.

herb & dorothy. & leno.

I recently had an argument with someone about Jay Leno and his impressive car collection - the fact that he own 100+ cars resulting in me losing a bet and having to take that someone out for sushi.
However, I stick to the core assertion of my bet which was that this type of unimaginable materialism is okay. Maybe even a good thing.

I was reminded of the documentary Herb & Dorothy.
Herb and Dorothy Vogel amassed a contemporary art collection of over 2,000 pieces.
He was a postal worker and she a librarian, so in foregoing creature comforts, living in a one bedroom apartment and opting not to have children, one salary went to living expenses and the other was able to go towards art buying.
It's pretty awesome, watching this everyday, modest couple penetrate the elite and absurd art world with something as pure and simple as a love for art.
In the end, though their massive, world-class collection was worth millions and millions, the Vogels donated it to the Washington, D.C. National Gallery of Art where admission is free for all people to come see.
I just love their story.

I think that investing your money (and I'm talking money you actually have) into something you truly love, something that improves your life and makes you happy, is a totally worthwhile adventure.
Yes, 100+ cars is a little extreme, but I'd rather 100 cars you put time and effort and heart and storytelling into than a yacht and a trip to Capri that are relatively meaningless.

p.s. I know my argument depends on the presumption that Leno sacrifices trips to Capri in order to buy his cars, but he also has a Noble Peace Prize nominee for a wife - she was totally into female oppression under the Taliban way before it was cool, so I just don't see her letting his materialism stray outside of motor obsession.

p.p.s. You see, I may be a Democrat, but I am in no way a socialist. Yup, despite what Fox News tells you, there is a distinction. (I also hope I'm not a limousine liberal, but that's beside the point). I do believe it's okay to make money and spend it in a way that improves your quality of life. And hopefully you're finding a way to give something (money, time, effort) towards improving other people's lives as well.
Maybe my acceptance of materialism was just a sealed deal when I discovered I could stomach the $1,000+ shoes featured in Vogue from month to month.
Yet I can't stomach any of Bravo's Real Housewives. Ugh, that type of materialism literally makes me cry.

p.p.p.s. This in no way lets Leno off the hook for the Conan debacle. Completely unrelated.

Monday, February 22, 2010

rockwell painted the american dream — better than anyone. (steven spielberg)

How my head hurt after a discussion of Dave Hickey's Romancing the Looky-Loos and Shining Hours/Forgiving Rhyme from Air Guitar in a philosophy of art history class. My only comfort was that he defended Norman Rockwell.

And the hours I spent looking through my mom's Norman Rockwell coffee table book. Literally hours, every painting is so perfectly detailed. I probably could have put twenty more images on this post. Love his work.

Thursday, February 18, 2010



Ashes on my forehead = dating an Episcopalian and no Diet Dr. Pepper for 40 days.
Couldn't quite bring myself to give up chocolate. It would just be too hard to give up something you absolutely, 100% know you'll give into in a matter of days.

Madewell (my favorite jeans) + Alexa Chung = Collaboration!.

This post is dedicated to Reba McEntire whom I always thought I didn't much care for, until I heard Fancy come on the radio and decided it may just be the best song ever.
Most of the time pop country is so wrong, except when they get it so absolutely right.

In other music reversals, I'm no longer a John Mayer fan. The Playboy interview was just a new level of ugliness I can no longer handle and claiming edgy, misunderstood honesty makes it even worse. Plus Battle Studies sucks.

I've been a compulsive journal-er since the first grade, so this blog is really just an extension of being the kind of person who loves doing this sort of thing. Thanks for all the support!

mctwist 1260.

(Hi Steve!)

Geez, I just love watching the Winter Olympics!

Whether snuggled into my bed watching pairs skating, laughing over the ridiculous outfits worn by male figure skaters over a glass of wine (or two), celebrating in my car when NPR announced Lindsey Vonn won gold or gulping in amazement at Shaun White's air and absolute embrace of life - there's just not a better way to wrap up your day.

I tried watching some Today Show commentary on the jobs bill and all the Republican partisan pandering that seems to accompany everything these days, and it all just seemed so laughable in comparison. Just stick to what's really important in life Matt and Mer.

My family took a random trip to Vancouver my sophomore year of college. I think my mom had a conference there or something, but still random - pulling Meg and Casey out of school, I skipped classes to go...

And usually family trips that involve all five members are pretty hardcore and somewhat miserable: involving endless hours in the car, sleeping on floors, my Dad always ends up locking the keys in the car and blaming it on someone else, waking up at the crack of dawn to do whatever activity is planned for the day, fighting over where to eat, etc.

But somehow this trip was perfection. There were no flight delays, we stayed in a dreamy hotel, ate amazing, fresh seafood, awe-inspiring architecture, a ferry boat to Victoria, Whistler for a day, rolling fog, shoreline, unbelievably scenic...

Don't get me wrong, I love the messy chaos of our intertwining lives, but for a few days we were this calm, peaceful nuclear unit on an enjoyable vacation with no surmounting obstacles in our path. So I always think Canada had this magical hold over us.

I can't wait for women's figure skating - pretty much the paradigm of being a girl. I still have a weird collection of books on Michelle Kwan and to this day can tell you her favorite color, snack food and that she always wears a gold dragon necklace while performing for good luck.

p.s. My favorite Olympic moment of all time:

Friday, February 12, 2010

this little light of mine.

NPR did a beautiful little story on the music of the Civil Rights Movement that brought tears to my eyes: listen here.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

happy birthday valentine!

(a) Mr. T, an example of your pure talent.
(b) Dance skills. (Picture stolen from a wedding album, I'm sure this is illegal).
(c) Beard.
(d) Favorite Song: Wuthering Heights by the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain.
You are so smart. And totally content (maybe too content), while still being adventurous - as I am never content. And look good in a tie. (Ha). And are completely at ease with who you are. And let me borrow books. And make me laugh. And without whom I wouldn't watch stuff like Good Hair and The Big Lebowski and Bill Mahr and totally unfunny SNL clips.
And you inspire me to be a better person every day in the way you treat others/everyone like they're worth your time, keep an open mind, remain totally unmaterialistic and put so much time and effort into your beliefs rather than lips service.

It's a doubly special day, because it's the other super inspirational person in my life (Whitney Caldwell's (aka Mate)) birthday too! And she's in South Africa!
Miss you:


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut.

Peculiar travel suggestions are dancing lessons from God.


This is a picture my friend Rachel sent me from Baltimore, the caption on her awesome tumblr says, "Because apparently snow equals intense banana cravings."

Even amidst all the epic snowfall - I sure do miss D.C. a lot.

Especially when I get emails from Becca with such quotable quotes as: "I just want to play Sega with boys, have sex, and eat sandwiches. And then I want them to leave so I can hang with my bitches."

And chat'n it up with Archita.

Oh but today, the one and only Design*Sponge came out with a city guide to Oklahoma City!
And I couldn't agree more with the opening statement, OKC gets decidedly cooler every day. (Especially if you celebrate your birthday at Cafe do Brasil with Walker Robins).

Ack. Where do I want to be? Where do I want to be.
And, wherever you go, you take yourself with you.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

the way music makes us feel.


but all you really wanted, was everything, plus everything.

Stuff: dress and ring and shoes.

And speaking of style, I love the "about" section of WhoWhatWear:

We imagine that giving up gossip magazines and celebrity blogs is similar to trying to quit smoking (wouldn't know for sure, we've never tried the latter). While avoiding newsstands is easy, we continue to struggle. It seems that completely kicking the web sites is more difficult than originally anticipated. After morning upon morning of our own neurotic, internal struggles at the laptop, we realized that we were primarily logging on to see what everyone was wearing the night before. We thought to ourselves: Selves, there should be a more convenient and reverential way to find out this information, no? After discussing this with our closest friends - obviously - we realized that would be a perfect contribution to society. Because after all, "We don't care who you date or if you eat. We only care about what you are wearing."

That being said, if you're interested in with whom Sienna Miller is "canoodling," you're in the wrong place, and we respectfully suggest you go to However, if you are interested in Miss Miller's new handbag of choice or what color nail polish she's wearing this week, we respectfully suggest you come here. Every day. Twice. Also, if we don't have anything nice to say, generally speaking, we won't say anything at all. So if a particular name never comes up on this website, well, feel free to draw your own conclusions.

Other stuff:

I finished reading Philip Pullman's controversial His Dark Materials trilogy - cramming in as many pages as possible over the long snow-and-ice weekend.
The book ends sweetly and I do believe anyone would come away better having read it.
As for it being one of the most censored books in America - there is nothing wrong with being challenged or tested or curious or questioning or creative or imaginative or etc. - in fact, it's the entire point of the book.

Other long snow-and-ice weekend activities included Franzia, frozen hot chocolate, pizza eating contests, snow sculpting and enjoying my proximity to some of my favorite people.

Frustrated by winter's ability to thwart my attempts at running, I begrudgingly joined the YMCA. As of this morning's 6am yoga class and watching the Today Show while on an elliptical, I'm hooked. I forgot how awesome gyms are.

Tortilla Soup addict thanks to Colby.

I like it when Obama takes questions from the GOP. More please.

And yes, I did purchase a new Toyota Camry in November. Now fondly known as a death trap.

Anything You Want, Spoon
Church on White, Stephen Malkmus
In for the Kill, La Roux (Kori)
Anything David Gray