Saturday, August 27, 2005

Popcorn Portal

I've made reference to smells here a few times. I must have an over sensitive nose or something, but smells really can make or break your day. Sometimes you can be simply sitting at work and something will waft past you, and just like that, you're brought back to a wonderific memory. Conversely, you could be sitting in the same chair, and smell...let's say...someone who just got a coffee at a convenience store, and ew, you're face is scrunched up and you're sticking your aroma therapy headache cream up your nostrils to block out the smell.

Not that I would know anything about that.

Yesterday someone in the office made popcorn. The minute I smelled it, I thought of indoor recess.

Growing up in Connecticut, there were many a day in which our precious time on the playground was yanked from us due to rain or snow. On these occasions, we would be relegated to drawing pictures, reading books or playing hangman. I think they even let us go to the gym sometimes to play indoor soccer or basketball. On special days though, we'd get to watch a movie.

We'd all pile into the hall downstairs-because it was the longest, and also because it had no windows. 30 or 40 of us crammed into the dark spaces, making sure we weren't sitting next to someone with cooties and also positioning ourselves just so, so that we could see our crush but they couldn't see us. And then...the roll of brown paper towels would circulate.

It was always taken directly off of the closest bathroom's paper towel dispenser, and for some reason, it was always new. It was so exciting to see that roll of paper towels coming around, because we knew we'd get to have popcorn.

For some reason, even today, at 29 years of age, I still can picture 1 particular snowy day in which we marched down the stairs and eagerly waited for the TV cart to be rolled to the front the hallway. We watched An American Tale-or part of it. That was the downer, you never got to finish the whole movie. I think I was sitting next to my friend Abby and my cousin Tiffany. We were in the 4th grade. Mrs. Royce was my teacher. She's the one who gave me the roll of paper towels. She was wearing a pink sweater that she insisted on calling "raspberry".

I can see the flicker of the TV as the traction fixed itself and hear the muffled sounds of children making after school plans, or asking their neighbor to move over-they can't see. And all of this is conjured up simply by smelling popcorn, even on a hot, steamy summer day, 19 years later.

What smells transport you to a long ago place?

Friday, August 26, 2005

Abnormalities All Around

It is also totally abnormal to fondle a billy goat's teats.

3 Inches of Grossness

Holy Hairy Horror! And also, ew.

This man's eyebrows skeeve me out. I'm sure you all recall my post entitled "Hairy Carey" . If not, check it out before reading on....Go ahead, I'll wait...

Back? Ok. So, now you understand. How can someone let a hair get over 3 inches long? I mean, did you look at the picture? Do you not see him holding this hair out in front of himself? How does he resist the urge to pull it? I mean, I want pull it out just by looking at that picture...and it's not even a close up! Can you imagine having that piece of hair in your fingers just ready to pluck it out leaving the rest neatly in place?

How can he resist that!?!

Mostly, my question really, is why let it get that long? I mean, yeah, now that he's all in his, "I'm famous for my lack of grooming skills" phase, of course he looks back and thinks it was a good call. But, c'mon? 3 inches? Did it not get in the way? Did it not at any point get in his eye? I'd imagine it would be like that annoying little fly that never goes away and you have to keep swatting it. Or something like that.

Anyway, my tweezers are chattering with anticipation in my bathroom right now as I type this. It's time to liberate them and the hairs they long to pluck.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

My Happy Place

There's something about being alone on the open road that really just lets your mind wander into places you haven't visited in a long time. Today, while I was driving all over the state taking photos, I went to my happy place: Disney World.

I was remembering how I felt when I was driving to my new apartment for the first time. It was the very first time I was going somewhere that I knew no one. I was scared and excited at the same time. I remember driving down I-4 and just as I drove over the little hill before 535 and the Downtown Disney exit, I saw the roof of Vista Way. They were those red Spanish style curved tiles that linked together to form the roof. I remember catching my breath because I didn't quite know for sure if they were the apartments I'd be living in, but had a pretty good hunch. The best, though, was that the top floor had a humongous arched window, almost the size of the whole top floor. I wished a tiny wish that I would get to live on the top floor.

As it turned out, it was Vista Way, and I did get to live on the top floor. In fact, the window I saw from the highway was the apartment I ended up living in. Funny. Though that apartment wasn't swanky and plush, it was mine. 2 other girls were placed in the apartment with me, and just like that, we'd become full fledged Walt Disney World Cast Members.

Before I went, I thought it was bad that I hadn't been to WDW since the 5th grade. Looking back now though, I realize that not being there in so long played a big role in how I viewed the World. Everything enthralled me. I remember that some nights my roommate and I would be laying in our beds and we'd just be giggling. One of us would inevitably whisper, "We work at Walt Disney World!" and we'd double over again. It was as if a dream I never knew I dreamt had come true.

One of my most favorite memories of all time is the day I attended "Once Upon A Time." It's a special training day for people who were selected to work at the Magic Kingdom. We arrived very early-it must have been around 7:00am or so. It was late August and so the heat was just waking up, just pulling it's blanket over us. The sun was already high and there we stood, a bunch of college kids with silly grins on our faces, dressed up in business attire, most, I suspect, for the first time.

Our guide walked us onto Main Street USA and told us stories and secrets that we could file away for later use with our guests. Then he stopped us about 1/2 way down, turned to the castle, and said, "Someone else has something to say to you."

And then, the "Disney Voice" came over the loudspeaker and said:

"Walt Disney World welcomes it's newest cast members to the Magic Kingdom! Thank you for being a part of this year's 25 Anniversary Celebration!"

I just got goose bumps.

I've told this story to many of my family and friends, and no one understands how magical, yes, magical, it was to be standing in the most beloved theme parks in the world knowing that I was about to help make thousands of people smile...knowing that I was chosen on a blizzardy, grey day at UMass Amherst based on one question-and I suspect a smile.

I have literally thousands upon thousands of little tiny fantastic memories of my time at Walt Disney World. There are days when I drive by a restaraunt and smell it's smoky wood burning stove smell and it takes me back to the Wilderness Lodge and the nights I'd sit by the fire with my boyfriend talking about our future. I'll hear the steam train that goes by my parents house and remember the days of counting my breaks based on how many times the train had passed me in my rotation. To this day, one of my favorite things to do is just sit and listen to Main Street USA.

I think what I loved the most about working for Walt Disney World though, was knowing that it was all based on traditions...people often ask my why the attractions are never updated. They say it in a negative way, as if Disney is falling behind. This may be true, but there is nowhere else in the world that you can go to a theme park and ride an attraction that your grandfather did when he was a young man. There's something kinda wonderful about going back with him and seeing his eyes sparkle as he tells you the story of when he first rode that ride...and even more wonderful when your mom does it too, and then you pass it on, and on etc. It's this type of tradition that people are forgetting about these days, only to replace them by yet another fast rollercoaster, another scream machine...but nothing can replace the feeling you get when you see your Papa's eye glisten with delight when he tells a story...even 9 years after it's been told.

I often joke with my friends that I'd like to take them to Walt Disney World, except, it's not a joke. Often times after a full day, I would clock out and change and one of my friends and I would go play. We did that almost everyday. I guess that's a little odd to people up here in the North, but the people I generally associated with were just as enamored with the WDW culture and what it had to offer as I was. It always made things interesting. Some days, I wish I could just fly to LBV to walk around Epcot, or to watch Spectro Magic. (Oh how I miss Spectro!) But, alas, I've now been back to CT for 5 years next month and though I would never move back to Florida, I do miss it.

I hope that everyone has a happy place they can think about every now and then, and that you are lucky enough to visit often, as I am...

Thanks for letting me share some of my memories!


Too Much Wine


According to this study, about 1/2 of the college freshman studied "lack at least some reading comprehension skills" indicating they would have a hard time with their basic core classes. At first I was going a completely different direction with this post, but after a glass of wine, I'm thinkin' "Why would you put it that way?"

I mean, "lack at least some reading compreshension skills?" That means that they had none? I don't think so. I'm sure even those with slight LD's (or even significant ones) have some reading comprehension skills. (Especially because later in the article, it states that "68% ...indicate they are well prepared for freshman English composition courses."

I know, I know, Comp 101 is not so much reading stories etc, but more writing complete sentences and such. However, you would think the 2 would be sort of related. I mean, usually those people who can't read can't write...right? I guess some people can write more simple stories than other, based on their level of knowledge, but I still have to believe that people who have the ability to write also have the ability to read.

On the other hand, and this is totally the wine talking at this point, some people are story tellers by nature. Some, in fact, are illiterate and pull their stories from within, based on their life. I supposed these people, (especially the illiterate ones) would be an exception.

But, they didn't take the test. And also, you have to know, these kids are college bound. By the time they took these tests, most may have already known where they were going to school. So, they've had to have been able to comprehend something.

What am I talking about? I think I'm going to post this just to see what the fuck I sound like when I've had too much wine.


Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Ice Cream Talks

One of my friends from Florida is stealing my life. Ok, by stealing, I really mean, living the same horror. We're both punctilious. We both over process. We both heavily weigh the outcome of each scenario before making decisions. We both date people who have trouble defining relationships. You see where this is headed don't you?

Fun. Really, the only difference is that she still gets to work at Walt Disney World and I...well, don't.

She'd been dating a guy for a while and all of a sudden out of the ice cream talk*!

Now, I don't think she was actually taken out for ice cream, which stinks, because there are many favorable options in Lake Buena Vista-especially Beaches and Cream where you can get "Everything But The Kitchen Sink" a sink, and also Ghiradelli in the Downtown Disney Marketplace. I don't think that she got to partake in these wonderful frosty delights while being dumped, however, making her fall even more terrible.

So, sometimes she'll write to me and it's as if I'd written the letter myself. It's very strange. I'll actually read the email over because I know exactly what she's feeling, it gives me goosebumps.

She's said things like, "I guess I don't know how I really feel about him. We are attracted to each other and have a great time. Sometimes I look at him and think 'I could definitely love this person for ever and ever' and other times I'm like, "Yeah, just kiss me and leave'" Now, I have to stop to say that I've never felt like I wanted Mr. CM to leave when we are together, even when he's in a pissy mood. When I'm with him, I want the time to go on and on and on. But-I can identify with the "I think I want to have your babies" one minute and "Let's just be special friends" the next."

Especially lately. Some days I think I'm getting in way over my head and that I'm falling for him and then the next (literally) I'm thinking, "Yeah, it's ok (and sometimes good) to not be too involved" What is wrong with me? Shouldn't I be completely in love or completely unattached?

Here I go again in another "I want to poke my eyeballs out" kind of stage...

But back to my friend. Her boy said some pretty whacked out things. He first said that he didn't think they had enough chemistry. (Though they'd been dating a while and the chemistry had been there-I mean, really there.) He also said that he didn't like that his friends always asked about her-and that they liked her. (This is just silly. I mean, does he want everyone he knows to hate each other?) Let's see, what else....oh yeah-he wants to leave his options open so he can date other people, but in the next breath he said he didn't want to be dating anyone. What is going on? I bet you he uses the phrase, "It is and it isn't" and stupid things like that.

Can anyone, specifically my male readers, let me in on the secret? What does it sound like to you? Does it sound like he's just not interested anymore and that's why he's saying these things? And if that's the case, why not just say, "We had fun and now it's over"?

On another side note, I've laid the groundwork for a talk with Mr. CM. The work boyfriend was actually typed in an email today. Now-I have to stop most of you from jumping up and down and also from emailing/calling me-I did NOT call him my boyfriend nor did I ask him to be my boyfriend, I simply stated that we never put labels on each other and it sometimes makes me hold back-that's all, nothing more. And, just so you know, nothing was mentioned in the response about, though the groundwork has begun, there's still a lien on the loan of love. to gouge out my eyes.

*Ice Cream Talk: Getting taken out for ice cream and then dumped.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Why Not?

Why would you not use a sidewalk?

I mean, if it's there....

And also, you were here. You made a big deal about how much you liked tomatoes. Liar.

And also, ALSO. Why the ,?;! did no one tell me about National Punctuation Day yesterday?! God! I can't rely on anyone.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Laf Trak

This weekend a my family and some friends went to an "Xtreme Comedy" show in Essex. (If you know Essex, you are either laughing at the thought, or scoffing because you are a snob) In any case, it was a Blast! We were seated right up front, and because we were such a large group, we knew there would be the opportunity to be in the line of fire...

Well, the first 3 comedians sort of ignored the audience, but the headliner, Rick Shapiro didn't. In fact, he zeroed in! Well, um, more Yeah, and I have to tell you-it was wicked fun.

I've mentioned my laugh's loud. Very loud. And I've gotten over the whole, "I'm embarrassed to laugh this loud" thing. So, naturally at a comedy show, I was louud.

So, we all know I'm a sucker for randomivity. Well, he's the God of randomivity-from the very minute he starts. He had me laughing so hard that by the end of the one and 1/2 hours he was up there, I was sweating.

To me, the best was when he said, "I love this girl...all I have to do is not finish a sentence and she laughs" and then he came over to me and started talking. It was great.

When other people in the audience didn't give him the reaction he wanted, he'd come over to me and say, "I'm going back of here-she loves me." and then, "Come on baby, give me a laugh."

He'd just randomly cough, which writing it now seems lame, but it was so gosh darn funny then because he'd be just in the middle of something and then cough and lose his place. He'd pull papers out of his pocket pretending to forget his material saying he had to focus-but the pages were blank. I think that part was only funny because we were so close we could see it.

He did also pick on my dad, who is very conservative looking and was wearing a button down shirt and his glasses. Rick said something like, "Sir, you've got a little cocaine on your mustache" but then later would jump back away from my dad saying, "Fuck! You look like a cop that chased me down and alley that fucking you?!" Funny, I know, only because I know my dad, but still it made everyone laugh.

He did ask me if I shaved "it", and asked me about orgasms. He said someone who laughs as much as I do must be getting good sex.

That's for me to know and you to find out.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

The Fall of Tarzan

*Giggle* Check this guy out.

I don't have much to say except:

1. He's 66.
2. He has to do what his wife tells him to do. And really, why did he have to "escape?" I mean-was she restraining him?
3. His plan was to swing from vines.
4. Vines? Really?
5. He's 66.
6. He actually said that he didn't think it would difficult to go from tree to tree.
7. He didn't think to use the door. I would think that climbing out of a 2nd story window would raise more suspicion than merely walking through a door, but that's just me.
8. Perhaps his wife should also hide the liquor in the house. The only way I see someone coming up with this cockamamy plan is because they were drunk.
9. ...And once he swung from these vines, did he have a dismount planned?
10. What other sneaky things is this fella up to?

Crazy Tarzan.


Is it weird that during a fitness evaluation my trainer invited himself over for dinner?

And also told me that he's the guy to protect me from scary people because he's trained by the Army?

Is it weird that he made me get down on all fours and stick my ass into the air like I was getting ready to have sex doggy style? He put his hand on my stomach during this "test" and had me count to 10.

And none of this struck me as weird while I was there?

I suddenly feel violated. I mean, he should have at least bought me a drink...