Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Central Heat Isn't Anything To Sneeze At, Either

One thing I have grown to adore about Seattle, and my neighborhood specifically, is snow days. It snows in Seattle about twice every winter. I can only describe the feeling as gleeful. How many things in your life can you describe with that word? Well, I don't have many, so I appreciate this.

When it snows in Seattle, pretty much everything shuts down. The city can't be counted on to prep the roads, so people really can't drive. Busses can't run with any reliability. People are pretty much bound to where they can safely walk.

Luckily, I live in Capitol Hill. I live above a sushi restaurant, a pizza place, and a Panera. This is nothing compared to the plethora of tasty restaurants that are on blocks besides mine. I also live within walking distance of three grocery stores, so I have no skin in this snow game.

HD and I telecommute on snow days, something we don't get to do together any other time of year. We wake up, have some coffee/tea, work for a while, and then get bundled up to head out for lunch.

Normally Capitol Hill is a busy, bustling destination for tourists and locals alike. There's a lot to do in this charming neighborhood. But when it snows, the Hill his left only to those who live here (or, if they're lucky enough, people who were stranded at their friends' houses).

One of the best things to do is walk on side streets wherever you're headed. They aren't plowed. You can walk in the middle of the street because you can pretty much bank on the fact that there won't be a car coming anytime soon.

I do realize that not everyone is as blessed with a job that lets them telecommute in such circumstances. People are terribly inconvenienced by these snow storms, and in great numbers. But that just means I appreciate this novelty even more.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

What makes me tick (lately, y'know, because I'm fickle)

  1. The Joy the Baker Podcast
  2. Corn, Tomato, and Avocado Salad with Honey-Lime Dressing - Well, I'm not making it so much anymore now that it's getting to be fall-y out, but I probably made this about 15 times over the summer, and it is GOOD and EASY (like me (haha just kidding)).
  3. Boot Camp - Actually, this makes me HURT more than tick, but I like it anyway... I'm kicking the asses of EVERYONE on the couch! If you're surprised that I wake up at 6:45 3 days a week to go run around and look like a moron; well, I am, too.
  4. Painting my own nails. I haven't done it since I was in high school, and now I have THREE bottles of nail polish. There is just no time to get a manicure anymore. #firstworldproblems
  5. Starbucks Decaf Via Packets - I'm off caffeine (sort of) so I opt for one of these most mornings now. How Seattle is this... they don't even brew decaf coffee in my office. They use the decaf pot for more leaded. Hence the need to bring my own.
  6. Rosetta Stone Hindi - I'm learning Hindi. It is hard. I sound like an idiot. But I've learned foreign languages before (sort of), and I'll do it again.
  7. Spotify - I didn't think anything would replace Pandora for me, but I really like the social aspect of Spotify. I can create playlists and share them. And if you connect Spotify to Facebook, you can see what your friends are listening to (and, therefore, discover new things), which is a great way to feed my music addiction without going bankrupt. Try it out!
What are you up to?

Monday, August 22, 2011

What I'm reading (because I sure as hell am not writing)

I went to a songwriting workshop at 826 Seattle a few weeks ago, mostly because the instructor was John Roderick of The Long Winters, and he's a very smart and talented guy. Before anyone gets all excited, nearly nothing came of this. I have never had the desire to be a songwriter, and I still don't. I thought maybe it would kick me into some sort of alternate universe where I was inspired to write and write and write every waking moment (that is, every waking moment I'm not writing web documentation, HOLDMEBACKNOW!) but it's mostly made me clean a lot. You know, to avoid the writing. Which is normal, I know.

Other bits of inspiration:
  • Molly Wizenberg of Orangette talks about writing (and the prerequisite of avoiding doing so)
  • The TED talk Molly linked to in the post above, led by Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Eat Pray Love)
  • This Dear Sugar column, sent to me by my dear dear friend who knows my heart entirely too well and knew emailing me this column on doing what you're meant to do would make me start to cry at my desk
And meanwhile, I read. Right now on the Kindle:
  • And Here's the Kicker: Conversations with 21 Top Humor Writers on Their Craft, edited by Mike Sacks. I had a humor column in my middle school newspaper. It was not funny at all, which, I suppose, made it just a "column". But regardless, this book called to me: Buck Henry, David Sedaris, Dave Barry, and Stephen Merchant? I would love to know how their minds work; this will have to suffice.
  • Private Life by Jane Smiley. The book begins with an older woman in Vallejo after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, visiting her Japanese American neighbors interned at Tanforan. After that initial chapter, it flashes back to her younger self around the time of the Civil War. How can you not be interested in a book with this kind of flashback? It's good so far, though there are a LOT of characters, and it's difficult to keep them all straight.
The fall is coming, and I'll be less inclined to want to spend every moment outside soaking up what little sun we see up here in Seattle, and possibly more inclined to pursue my creative side. But first, that floor isn't going to sweep itself!

Oh wait, yes it will, we have a Roomba. I'm running out of excuses.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Before I even knew myself

New friends bring new perspective. You don't know what you don't know until a new person in your life tells you about their experiences. New people become old friends faster than you realize.

But I'm so equally thankful for the old friends, the people who knew me before I even knew myself. The people who have watched my adamant declarations of like and dislike, of love and hate, and nod along when those preferences switch completely.

I used to think it was easier to evolve into who you really are when there weren't people around who knew the old you. But recently I've realized that those people accepted who I am now long before I decided to become that person. They loved me for who I am today when I couldn't even imagine who that was going to be.

Old friends are magical.