Sunday, February 21, 2010

My favorite Winter Olympics quote so far

From the New York Times...

“Try to imagine Pegasus mating with a unicorn and the creature that they birth,” he said last week. “I somehow tame it and ride it into the sky in the clouds and sunshine and rainbows. That’s what it feels like.”

-Graham Wantanabe, describing his feelings about being at the Vancouver Olympics for Snowboard Cross

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Women Do! candidate?

I was happily reading NPR in bed from my new NPR iPhone app, when I came across this article about women playing Fantasy Football, supposedly in increasing numbers (you know, because a staggering 14% of Yahoo! fantasy football players are women this year, although no numbers from previous years are reported for comparison). As a woman who's played fantasy football for the past six years, I had to rise from my posting hiatus to write about this piece of crappy journalism.

It contains other shocking revelations such as this:
Casselano and her teammate Susie Schoenberger say it's a slightly different game with women. Both admitted that looks sometimes played into their picks.

"I'm sure many guys don't pick some of their players based on looks," Schoenberger says.
Now wasn't that an insightful question! I'm sure guys get asked about drafting by a player's looks all the time. To Schoenberger's credit, she goes on to clarify that most women don't use looks as the main factor for their draft picks, and she only would if all of her favorite players were no longer available and there was nothing else left to go on. So I think she was trying to make the best of a terrible question.

And this:
Paul Charchian, president of the Fantasy Sports Trade Association and host of a fantasy football radio show, says the men he talks to haven't minded women joining them on the virtual field. In fact, for men who are married to these fantasy enthusiasts, it's a point of pride.

"It's almost one-upping your friends who have to try to carve out a few hours to sit in front of the TV on Sunday because their wife doesn't like it," Charchian says. "And they don't understand it and it's an area of contention."

Charchian also says there's more to men enjoying their partners' interest in fantasy football than simple camaraderie. "It is hot. Absolutely," he says.
Wow. I'm so glad that NPR was able to devote their reporting horsepower to get to the bottom of this very important story.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

feeling restless...

A lot has changed since I last wrote. My company went through a layoff and reorganization that caused many of the people I worked with for years to suddenly disappear, a disorienting experience to say the least. To distract myself I accelerated my studies and completed my MBA a year and a half ahead of schedule. I'm proud of that now, but it was a grind while I was in the thick of it. On a personal note, My relationship with Leon has ended, I now have two cats and a new relationship that I'm really enjoying (while also getting to know two more cats).

In some ways not a lot has changed. I still find myself working at a job I am good at but do not love, struggling to find opportunities that make me feel excited and inspired again. Even with my MBA, I'm still not sure how to find something that would be more satisfying. So many people have told me they are surprised that I can't find more open doors around me, but I am having a hard time even finding a window.

I've kept a personal journal off and on for over ten years now, and I know that when I maintain it regularly it accomplishes two things. First, it helps me keep myself accountable for things in life. It's hard to keep repeating mistakes when you see them captured in writing. I've found that some of the most productive times in my life are directly tied to my keeping a journal. I can also see that when I stop writing regularly, I struggle and turn inward. Usually that happens because I'm scared of facing reality for some reason (and there have been several, that's for sure!). The second thing keeping a journal helps me with is to, well, just feel better about myself. Allowing myself time to explore my thoughts and emotions can feel a little like a luxury, and I always come away from the experience realizing things that I never would have if I hadn't given myself the time to just focus on the page. That said, when things are not going as well, it is easy to feel that perhaps I don't deserve the luxury time anymore. I know it's silly, but I've felt that way in the past just the same and am certain I will again in the future.

I started this blog a few years ago in an effort to change something in my life. Specifically, I have always enjoyed writing and wanted to make more time for it in my life. I thought that keeping this blog would be a way to write more regularly, with the exciting possibility that I could explore ideas and concepts with others. But with that excitement came nerves. I remember feeling uncertain when I first started, wondering if anyone really cared about what I was writing. The supportive comments I received at the time helped me continue to try. I quickly realized that keeping the blog wouldn't be quite the same as a personal journal. There were many things I would start to write about that just didn't feel right to include. Most of these things are either very stream-of-consciousness or personal, either of which I was uncertain about showing to the world in full. My struggle with this issue, along with other distractions life served up along the way, caused me to back away from the blog for a while.

But the urge to write in this blog never went away. I've always wanted to write for others, and I hope the public nature of a blog will help me learn about how well I'm doing and how I can improve. And so, in the words of The Fabulous Limeliters, humbly, I leap into the breach...

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Me 1, Master Cylinder 0

In the world of nut butters, none kicks more ass than almond. Leon and I had a peanut vs. almond butter taste-off on Sunday, and the winner was clearly almond. Unfortunately, we managed to finish off the almond butter then, so today I had to make do with the peanut butter.

I wrote this originally this morning as I ate my "whew, that was close!" breakfast after discovering that the problem with my car's clutch pedal is not related to the master or even the slave cylinder, as I had feared. Oh, the things that run through one's mind after learning they aren't looking at several hundred of dollars worth of auto repairs.

Mmm...almond butter.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

resolution for the new year

"Choosing is existence: to the extent that you don't choose, you don't exist."

- John Barth

I consider that my lesson for today, and an idea that will color the rest of my year, I'm certain.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

snow day!

Yesterday I woke up at 6AM, anticipating a snow storm had already started. I jumped out of bed and ran to the window, the way I have since I was a child, but saw no snow. Sadly, I then started going through all of the small routines I go through to start my day - made a cup of tea for myself, checked the news on the New York Times website, started breakfast. As I was stirring ginger clusters into my yogurt, I was surpised to hear a little chrip come from my cell phone, indicating that I had a new text message. I looked down and saw a message from my friend Marcia, asking me if I was going to work or not, since she heard there was a lot of snow near work. I then looked out my window again and was surprised to see lots of snow, with some accumulation already. "Damn!" I said, more shocked than angry, realizing that the show had fallen only within about an hour or so since I'd last looked out.

Considering I have a 30 mile drive to make in order to get to work these days, I made the decision, or the "executive decision" as people on The Apprentice would call it, to stay home and work from there. Marcia stayed home as well, although we later learned we were among the few. Apparently several people went through the trouble of getting out there, only to be sent home early, so I think we made the better decision.

I was able to get some work done, although that was offset slightly by the excitement of the snow day itself. I love the way a snow day can come along and disrupt your normal routine. All plans are off, and as a kid I think that's what I loved the most about it. We had nothing else to do but play in the snow, then go inside and eat all of those great cold weather foods like grilled cheese sandwiches, tomato soup and (the ultimate!!) hot chocolate with marshmallows. Of course, as we got older, there was more work involved that made things a little less fun, like shovelling and clearing snow, but overall you still ended up with a break from your everyday activities, a mini-vacation of sorts.

Since I live in the city, I don't have quite as much shovelling to do these days. So between work assignments I found myself instead doing other things I don't normally give myself enough time for, like catching up on personal emails, cleaning off my kitchen table and making use of it to organize holiday presents, going through clothes and getting rid of old ones, finding time to read one of the many books I've started of late but haven't finished. I ended up being more productive than I usually am on any given day these days, and I felt happier and calmer at the end of my day than I've felt in ages. (Of course part of that was from relief associated with completion of the final project for my Managerial Finance course, but I digress.)

So as a result of this, I've decided that from time to time I need to try to take figurative snow days. Just take a day off for no particular reason and use the time in whatever direction the day steers. I think we all need random breaks from our current realities, as if we are pinching ourselves to make sure we are still awake.

Now if there was only a way that I could figure out to get this style of living into my everyday life. *Sigh* Well, I suppose I'll consider that still a work in progress. But that's good in a way, because if I had life all figured out by now, where would the fun be going forward?

Friday, December 09, 2005

the web once again brings me somewhere I never expected to be

I just found this quote, thanks to Google's personalized start page (apologies to my Microsoft friends - I just love Google!):

The quickest way to a man's heart really is through his stomach, because then you don't have to chop through that pesky rib cage.
- J. Jacques

So then I was wondering, who exactly is this J. Jacques fellow? After using the aforementioned Google, I learned that he is a comic artist. The quote came from one of his strips, Questionable Content. Which, after a brief review, I would highly recommend checking out. I love the graphics, and it has some great dialogue in it, full of little witty asides such as the one above. Although I have yet to come across that exact quote, I have been entertained by others. Such as:

"I realize this is like interrupting an intricate waltz with a sledgehammer to the knee."

"Really? Well there goes my excuse for dancing topless on the coffee table and making out with some random girl then."

And, my personal favorite:

"I'm snottier than a 13-year old girl and more dehydrated than Joan River's hoo-haa."