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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The One Where Men Aren't the Devil


I'm not dead, and I haven't forgotten that I blog here sometimes.  I have a new blog, though, a food one, and I'm doing my damnedest to keep up with it even though you can see from this blog here at. . .consistency isn't my blogging strong suit.  However, I have a METHOD for my other blog, so the chances are good that I'll be keeping up with it the way I should.

The chances are good, but not definite.  I'm on week 2 and keeping up, so we'll see.

Along with this blog, and my oft-neglected but recently picked back up site She Likes to Bake, I've started a new project called Sarah Cooks the Books.  It will eventually just be SarahCookstheBooks.com, but for right now, it's still on blogspot.  So there you go.  Check 'em out, and I just ordered this book, so I promise they'll both be better-looking, and soon.

My on-topic point today is men.

Not these men.

I fully understand that sexism is alive and well.  I fully understand that women don't get paid as much as men in most jobs and that a woman's more likely than a man to be raped and that men have pretty much run things since the beginning of time.

But what I don't understand is when, exactly, feminism turned from "Let us vote, dammit!" to "Men are evil bastards who need to die a long, slow, painful death for the crime of having a penis."


The very, very feminist website I referenced wanting to quit before but haven't quite been able to bring myself to leave had this story the other day about how money tore apart this woman's marriage.  That's not really here nor there, but it was this little gem that made me take notice:

 
Truly, there are few things in life that irritate me as much as the use of "Mr. Mom." (saying that a dad is "babysitting" his kids when the mom's not there is another one.)  Why Mr. Mom?  Why not. . .I don't know. . .Dad?
 
So, knowing I was throwing myself directly into the jaws of the angry shark (does. . .that metaphor work?) I said:

To the credit of many on that site, I, at the present moment, have 35 upvotes.  But those aren't the ones I'm interested in.  (Mostly because, in this case?  I KNOW I'm right.)  It's the downvotes I'm looking at.  At least 7 people feel that Mr. Mom is an OK terminology to use.  Why?  I don't know specifically, and I can't ask, because downvoting is anonymous, but I'm going to go ahead and guess that it's because I dared suggest that a man could do a good parenting job and not be referred to as any version of "Mom."

There was another time I got into this same scuffle, regarding an article of women who've been raped.  I brought up instances of women who claim they've been raped, but have in fact, not.  (Because truthfully, those women should be punished just as hard as the men who rape.)  I said something about men who are falsely accused having to go through hellish things (wrecking of reputation, alienation of friends, loss of potential dates, sometimes court proceedings. . .) just because a woman either didn't get when she wanted and then lied about it or got what she wanted, but then decided she didn't actually want it, so she calls rape.  (Those were the examples I used.)

This was the response I got from one person:

So, to recap, it doesn't matter what I think of people who lie about being raped and ruin lives in the process.  The important takeaway from this is that MEN DON'T NEED PEOPLE TO CARE ABOUT THEIR FEELINGS.

(For those of you who don't know, "cis" is another one of those words created because we as a society have the inherent need to label EVERYTHING.  Short for "cisgender," it is "the opposite of transgender, a cisgender person’s gender identity matches their body and the gender they were assigned at birth, as well as the traditional roles and behaviors associated with that gender."

In other words, heterosexual people who don't think they should be the opposite sex.  This "word" is thrown around A LOT on this website.


So my purpose in life, since I'm a woman and all, is to be sympathetic to women and to not care about men at all costs.  If a woman lies about being raped?  That's OK, because she's more likely to be the victim of a sexual assault than a man is.  If a man is accused of rape and he didn't do it?  I shouldn't care, because he's a man, and as a man, he's more likely to be the perpetrator of a sexual assault, so it's like a pre-emptive strike, and he probably had it coming anyway.  Right?

I call bullshit.

I'd like to say it for the record here, for anyone to read, men, women, women who frequent that website, whatever.

I like men.

I like men a lot.  Most of my best friends in life have been men. 

Hell, I married a man!  I married a man that doesn't sexually assault people and who I'd never call "Mr. Mom" when his daughter is here.  I married a man that is a much better person than a lot of the women I've known in my life.

So no, I'm not going to take your side just because we have the same indoor plumbing.  If you're a jerk, I'll ignore you.  Same if you're a man.  If you're a jerk, I'll ignore you.  If you're not a jerk. . .well, apparently, you're just a figment of my imagination then.  Because men who deserve kindness and compassion and for their lives to not be ruined by false accusations of rape don't exist.

(Note: My spellcheck doesn't recognize "cis" or "cisgender" as words, so there's that.)

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The One with the End of an Era

I was going to call this one either "The One with a Fall From Grace" or "The One with the End of a Love Affair" or "The One Where I Lose the Love," and then I realized that both of those would make it sound like I was on either side of some kind of extramarital affair or getting a divorce or something, which I'm not.

When I wrote this post, I meant everything I said.  Everything about the love I've always had for everything in the Jane Pratt universe, and how Jane magazine was the raison d'ĂȘtre for most of my adolesence and childhood.  How I looked up to Jane, and how it was my absolute biggest dream to be able to work for her.

You know how, at some point, you realize your parents aren't perfect?  You realize they're not perfect, and it's so effing disappointing?

The last two days have been like that for me.

You might accuse me of being melodramatic, and that's cool, but the xoJane community was like. . .my people.  Smart, snarky people with opinions beyond "OMG, I totes need the new Marc Jacobs bag or I'll, like, LITERALLY DIE."  It is the damn hardest thing in the world for me to make friends, so when I find a community, whether online or in the 3-D world, that I can connect with, it's huge.  And I had that.  But I don't think I do anymore.

Without getting into the logistics of all of it, I think it all boils down to the fact that I've realized that Jane herself. . .doesn't really care.  She cares about the money, and she cares about the clicks, but she doesn't much care about the community of people that, for the most part, were brought together because of the common interest of Jane or Jane's big sister, Sassy

She has always been known for her celebrity name-dropping (Did you know she's former lovers/ currentBFF with Michael Stipe?  And that she slept with Drew Barrymore?  And that she's also BFF with Courteney Cox?  We all know.  Because she talks about it ad nauseum.)  but apparently, that also bleeds over into the not-so-celebrity people, the chosen few that are part of the in-crowd.  The ones that get fawned over and acknowledged like they were real-life best friends.

Am I jealous?  That this woman I've looked up to for literally more than half my life won't respond to my (obviously hilarious) life observations and (thoughtful) questions?  A little, yeah.  But it's so much more than that.

I can't have respect for someone who looks the other way while her beauty director and "health critic" gets herself so wasted on drugs every night she writes long, rambling diatribes about her "rock and roll" lifestyle (with a beauty product recommendation thrown in for good measure at the end) and who, after the aforementioned BD/HC quits (Yeah, quits.  Wasn't fired.  Quits to write for the Vice website.) hires a new Beauty Editor that her readers and commenters literally, literally BEGGED her to not hire, for a miriad of very valid reasons.  And when she hired her instead, just basically said, "I love her and you need to be nice!" without addressing any of the reason why the readers, the REASON for such a site, were so against it.

I'm tired of the constant tearing-down in the comments section and the authors' own Twitter feeds.    I'm tired of being a part of a community where, a year ago, I felt like I was an active part of and that I was being heard as a person, and now, I'm just not.  It doesn't help that Disqus has added a "downvote" option and that it's anonymous.  People are just mean.  I think facebook has been correct in not adding the "Dislike" option.  That would get really ugly really fast.

So I'm quitting.  I'm throwing in the towel.  At the very least, I'm taking a hiatus.  Maybe I'll be back.  If I see Daisy Barringer tweet that she's written something, I'll probably read it, but avoid the comments section.  There's enough negativity in the world, and I'm working hard enough to keep it out of my own life.  It's hard, you guys.  I'm not naturally a glass-half-full kind of gal, but I've legitimately been trying harder to not. . .drink the Haterade.

Maybe you're reading this and thinking, "Damn, Sarah.  You're too sensitive.  You're making a big deal out of nothing."  Maybe that's your opinion, and that's cool.  For me, it's like I've just lost my best elementary school friend.  It's just not fun anymore.

I guess this means I'm going to need to find real-life people to talk to now.  God help us all.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The One with the Crazy Dreams

I was reading a post on a website I frequent about dreams, specifically anxiety dreams, and reading the comments was just fascinating.  I didn't realize that some of the dreams I have pretty frequently (monthly, bi-monthly, sometimes weekly) were so common, and I never would have thought to call them anxiety dreams.  Seeing as to how they make me feel anxious, though, I guess that would make sense.  And they all involve school, which I'm sure a therapist would have a field day with.

One that I have pretty often is that I'll dream I'm still in high school (Dream?  Or nightmare?), but the high school is actually a variation of the middle school I went to.  It's almost always after hours, and I'm running around, trying to find my locker.  I almost never find it, and I know I need to get books out of it, but for the life of me, I can't track the thing down.  A couple of times, I've found the locker, but I've forgotten the combination.  I never end up getting to my books, and rarely do I even find the locker.

The first of my two college dreams is a bi-monthly dream during which I get to school (the actually university where I went) and discover that I have no dorm room.  All my stuff is sitting outside in a U-Haul, and I have nowhere to live.  I run around campus, looking for someone to help me find somewhere to live, but most people have usually already gone home.  Sometimes, I go into a dorm that appears to be unfinished, they're still building it, and I look for someone that might let me live with them.  I can't right this second remember a time when I've eventually gotten somewhere to live.  I guess I just live out of the U-Haul.

My last dream is another college dream, and it's that I wake up one day and glance at my schedule to realize that I'm supposed to be in class, it's the end of the semester. . .and I've never one attended that class.  I've completely forgotten it was on my schedule, so I never went.  Then I go running to find the class, and I can't track it down.  It seems to always take place during senior year, and it's a class I need to graduate, so I guess it's implied that I'm not going to graduate because of this one class I've forgotten to go to.

Any dream interpreters out there want to take a crack at these?  Will I be stuck in high school/college for the rest of my life?

What about you?  What are the weird, recurring dreams you have?

Thursday, July 19, 2012

The One With the Melting Pot

The title of this one sort of sounds like I went on some kind of psychadelic drug trip.  But I did not.  Just went to dinner.

The Melting Pot, if you don't know, is a fondue restaurant.  I've heard about people going, and there's another blogger that I read that loves it and goes as often as she possibly can (mostly for the chocolate), but it's. . .ridiculously expensive, so I've never been.  However, last week or the week before, Groupon had this deal where you could pay $20 for $40 worth of food.  Obviously, I bought one.


 My friend, Faith, is getting married in a couple of weeks, and my friend/her roommate, Andrea, suggested we go out next week for a bachelorette-party-dinner.  (Meaning, you know, just going to dinner.)  We're going to the Melting Pot (with Groupons!), so I decided to take D out on a rarely-utilized Date Night as to go with him for the first time before I go with Faith and Andrea.  (What an awkward sentence.)

We got all gussied up and headed over to The Melting Pot. . .except there was an accident on the highway involving a car being stuck under a tractor trailer, so we had to re-route, thus making us late for our 6:30 reservations.  (I called to make sure we'd still have a table.)  So that was the first thing.


When we arrived, we were seated by the manager.  We were seated in this area with tiny booths for two, which had a curtain that you could close to. . .assure you had privacy, I guess.  (The couple in the booth adjacent to ours was making good use of the closed curtain, if you know what I'm sayin'.  And I think you do.)


I felt sort of awkward, going into a nice place and whipping out a Groupon page, but then I figured, if they were going to judge me for cheap(er) food, they shouldn't have put up a Groupon.  It said on the print-out to give the Groupon to the waiter upon arrival, so we did.

The waiter explained how the whole process worked, but he spoke fast and had an accent and didn't enunciate, so I had a hard time understanding exactly what was happening.


We ordered the spinach and artichoke cheese fondue which took. . .a long time to get there.  I'd drained my Diet Coke (as I do), and kept burning my mouth with nothing to drink except pilfered water from D.  (I realize that there is that expression about even dogs waiting for their food to cool, but we'd been waiting a long time, and I was hungry.)  We finished that up and sat, patiently waiting, for our Caesar salads to get there.

And we waited.

And we waited.


And then our waiter came by and told us they'd forgotten about our salads.  Which is awesome.  Especially the part where he told us they'd forgotten about us.  (This happens. . .constantly with both D and myself.  We both have a tendency to slip through the cracks, so when you put us together, we're basically invisible to the naked eye.)

Then the salads came.  Caesar salads, which were actually very good, if not a little small for $7.

Then we waited.

And waited.


You might think that, at this point, we were mad and yelling and all that, but. . .we were actually having a lot of fun.  We go out. . .never, and while everything was happening against us, we were having a really good time being a couple, if that makes sense.  The waiter came by, and D mentioned that we'd been there for an hour and a half and were still waiting for a meal, and we'd like to speak to the manager later.

So our 'entree' got there.  We decided to split one, because, you know, $23 dollars.  There was a little bowl of vegetables, 4 pieces of chicken, 4 shrimps, 4 pieces of steak, 4 pieces of sausage, and several sauces.  I have to admit, I was a little bummed out that the food was so. . .sparse.  But then, we were splitting one, so maybe it's different if you eat the whole thing yourself.

There was also a pot of hot broth, where you. . .cook your own meat.  We were puzzling over this when the manager came over, but we sent him away so we could eat.

We sat there, trying to figure out if the two-and-a-half minutes the waiter indicated would actually cook this meat.  We were going to put it in a little at a time, but ended up just dumping everything in the broth, like a soup.


Two-and-a-half minutes passed quickly, and the meat didn't. . .look done.  So we discussed paying this much money to cook your own meal, and then pulled some of the meat out again.  It still didn't look done, but it was dark, and it was hard to tell.  D ended up pulling out the flashlight on his phone, and we were dying laughing about how ghetto the whole thing was.  But the meat was done, so we ate.  It was really good, but there wasn't much there.

Ultimately, the manager came back and comped our entree and one of the salads, so we had money for dessert, which was a pot of melted milk chocolate that came with marshmallows, bananas, strawberries, Rice Krispie Treats, a piece of cheesecake that. . .wasn't very good, and pound cake.



The chocolate was amazing.

(I realize as I'm telling this story that I'm not conveying how hilarious that whole situation really was.  I don't really know how.)

Then the waiter came by and asked if we wanted coffee.  I didn't.  D did.

A few minutes after that, the waiter came back by to let us know the coffee machine was broken.

All you could really do at that point was laugh.

The waiter brought us our bill, and it came out to $36 something. . .except he hadn't factored in the Groupon I'd handed him at the beginning of our 2-and-a-half hour ordeal.  Instead of laughing, all we could do then was shake our heads.  He came back a while later and was like, "Oh, yeah, you had a Groupon."


So he brought the bill back, and it was the lovely number of $0.00.  So we left a tip (really, we did) and left.

All things being said, I'd go back, but not if I was paying pull price for anything.  The food was good, but there wasn't nearly enough of it and it was WAY overpriced.  But we had a great evening, and I'm looking forward to going with Andrea and Faith next week.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The One with Unequal Diabetes

This is a post that. . .if anyone in the DOC (Diabetes Online Community) read it, I'd probably be skewered.  It's not amusing, it's not especially PC. . .it's just something I've been thinking about.

The Diabetes Sisters conference I went to back in May was really big on the whole community thing.  As in, it doesn't matter if you're a Type 1 diabetic or a Type 2 diabetic. . .we've all got the 'betes.  We're all a sisterhood.

That's all well and good, but I guess my dirty little secret is that. . .I think that's a load of crap.

What makes it even worse is that there are people now saying that Type 2 diabetes could potentially have autoimmune origins.  That's not been proven, but it's a theory they're studying.

That's literally all I have.  All I have that I can say when someone's like, "Oh, you have diabetes.  You must have eaten too much sugar!"  I can say, "Well, no.  Type 1 is autoimmune.  It just kind of happens.  Type 2 is usually more lifestyle-based, although it can run in families, too, blah blah blah."

Now what do I have?  "Oh, you have diabetes.  You should eat less sugar."  "Mine's autoimmune."  "Yeah, well, they both are."

Except Type 2s can get theirs in well enough control that they don't have to take their medications anymore.  That will never happen for me.  I'm stuck.  I'm stuck with this, and to add insult to injury, they give these two different diseases (they're not the same) the same name, and then talk about Type 2 in the media all the time because Americans aren't capable of eating right and taking care of themselves and just refer to it as "diabetes," because who cares about the 5% of diabetics who are in the same boat as me?  No one cares, that's who cares.  The American Diabetes Association puts more emphasis on Type 2.  The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation?  They're all about the kids with Type 1.

But what about adult Type 1s?  What about us?  Sure, there's Diabetes Sisters. . .but that's for ALL diabetics, not just those of us who are connected to our insulin for the rest of our damn lives.  It's for the Type 1s, the Type 2s, the Type 1.5s.  (What the HELL is a Type 1.5?)  (That's rhetorical.  I don't honestly care.)  They're even calling people who have a diabetic in their families Type 3 Diabetics.  THAT'S NOT A THING.

It's insulting.  That's all it is.

I guess this is my public rant.  I'm angry about it today, and I'm tired of being put in the same category as someone who sat on their ass and ate fried Cheetos for every meal.  (YES I KNOW that not all Type 2 diabetes cases are caused by lifestyle choices.  But MOST OF THEM ARE.)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The One with Fifty Shades of Gray

Workout update:  Saturday, I almost died, thanks to a stitch in my side while I was running.  It started after the first 60-stint of running and continued until the end.  Yesterday, I started my Week 2 routine:  7 rounds of 2 minutes of running, 1 minute of walking.  I only added an extra three minutes of walking to that, and I did it all the way through without stopping.

Sadly, all this is causing me to GAIN weight, which was actually the opposite of what I was going for.

So Fifty Shades of Gray.  For those of you that haven't heard of it, it's the first book in this trilogy of "novels" about this guy who's hardcore into S&M.  And then there's this girl he wants, who's all like, "Oooh!  But I want you to LOVE ME."  They're terribly-written, repetitive, awful, awful books that have, inexplicably, taken the world by storm.

I'm reading the first one (which I bought on my Nook so if I'm reading it in public, I won't be judged.  Or worse, have someone start a conversation with me about them.)  I can't.  Stop.  Reading it.

It reads like fan fiction (which it is.  It was originally a fan fiction for Twilight.  Blech.) and the author uses the same phrases constantly.  She's always talking about her Inner Goddess, and she's just the whiniest, most pathetic, worst character in the history of literature.

And yet, I'm still reading.

I don't entirely understand the popularity of it all.  Some people are calling it "Mommy Porn," as it seems to be a bunch of middle-aged woman reading it.  My mother-in-law refuses to believe it started out as fan fiction.  My hairdresser (who is actually my age) told me that women of all ages come in and want to talk about the book.

It's legitimately one of the worst books I've ever read.

And yet, I'm still reading.

I refuse to read the second and third books, though, especially since a friend of mine told me what happens, and it's all just infuriating.

The weirdest thing about it, I think, is that the public libraries here refuse to carry it.  I can't remember the reasoning, as I had never heard of the books before when I was working there and we got an e-mail saying we weren't going to be carrying it.  I wish I could remember why.  (Here's an interesting article about why many libraries won't be carrying it.)

Aside from those reasons, it doesn't make much sense, because the library carries the A.N. Roquelaure (Ann Rice) Sleeping Beauty Trilogy, which I read in college and which is FILTHY in a way that the 50 Shades books could only hope to be.  And then there are the oft-read, tattered copies of the books by Zane the library carries.  I read one page of one of those and was shocked.  (And I'm no prude.)

All this to say, the library carries erotica, but apparently, not flash-in-the-pan, badly written, fan fiction erotica.  Which this series is.

And yet?  I'm still reading.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

The One with the Second Workout

I don't have any pictures or anything, but I actually did my second run-walk on Wednesday. . .it was surprisingly successful (especially in comparison to my first day.)

D gave me this. . .weird stretchy workout shirt to wear, and seeing as to how it was long-sleeved, I thought I would die of heat, but as it turns out, the thing has a weird way of keeping you cool.

Did my blood sugar and it was 166.  Higher than 150, so I figured I was good to go.  This time, I unhooked my insulin pump entirely, to see what would happen.  With my weird stretchy shirt and shorts and hair in a clip that caused it to be inexplicably big, I looked like some kind of deranged Workout Jeannie.


I decided to go to the gym this time to avoid both the heat and the July 4th traffic.  As an interesting side note, I passed a bunch of frat boy looking people in the pool area, and this one guy was fighting with his bikini-clad bleach blonde girlfriend about something.  She screamed at him, "You NEVER LISTEN to WHAT I'M SAYING!"  And the guy, awesomely, replied, "Do YOU ever listen to what you're saying?"

He might have been a tool, but at least he was a quippy tool.

(Another side note:  I was looking in Google Images for a picture to go along with "quippy tool" and a picture of Ben Affleck showed up.)

I got on the treadmill and started off at a run.  It was easier this time, partially probably because I'd sort-of done it on Monday and partially because I was on a treadmill.  Got through my first 4 60-90's and then stopped for a water break.  The last 60-90 was a special kind of torture, but I made it through the entire thing with little incident.

Got home and did my blood sugar.  59.  What the what?

(Later, D was like, "You didn't eat anything before you went, did you?"  I hadn't, and he told me that what's happening is that I'm stimulating all kinds of work-out-type processes internally (his explanation was a lot less vague and a lot more concise) and so my glycogen (maybe?) was being eaten up while I ran.  Makes sense.)

So NEXT time, I'll eat something beforehand and maybe leave my pump on.

For the 4th of July, we went to the top floor of my office building and watched fireworks from there.  It was a great view, and also allowed us to see several fireworks shows happening miles away.  Good times.

Day 2 of Week 1 down:  22 workouts to go to complete the 8 weeks.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The One with the First Day of Running

I don't really get along with exercise.  I know you're supposed to do it, I know I could probably lose the random 12 pounds I gained working at the library if I did it. . .but it's just not fun.

But then I saw this: The Color Run.  It looks insane and awesome, and it's a 5k, as opposed to an actual marathon.  I can run a 5k, right?

Well, I can if I work up to it.  I signed D and myself up for the only one in North Carolina this year, and it'll go down in November.  The Color Run's facebook page had a printout of a good way to train yourself for a 5k (I think it's very similar to the "Couch to 5k" workout), so I printed it off and decided to start it this week.

For week one, 3 to 5 times that week, you're supposed to run 60 seconds and walk 90 seconds 8 times.  Sounded doable, I thought.  Yesterday, I came home, ready to get going.

5:09 p.m.:  Twisted ankle walking up to the third floor in heels.  Maybe I won't be starting today.

5:15 p.m.:  Decide ankle will be fine, put on tennis shoes, T-shirt, and shorts.  Can't find a hair tie.

5:18 p.m.:  Track down a hair tie, inexplicably, in the extra bedroom and put hair in ponytail.  Admire the way my last haircut makes the hair in the ponytail look all wavy and cute.  Contemplate what a shame it would be to get sweaty and mess up the hair.

5:19 p.m.:  I can't find any paper on which to write down my musings.  Finally track down a notecard in a box of desk stuff that hasn't been unpacked yet after the move.  Consider staying home and unpacking the desk boxes.

5:20 p.m.:  Test blood sugar.  It's at 126, so I figure that should be fine for an approximately 20-minute run/walk.

5:22 p.m.:  Try to figure out how to use the stopwatch on my phone.  I don't really want to bring the phone with me, but I also don't have a stopwatch.  As it turns out, a phone is going to come in handy.  But at 5:22 p.m., I don't know this yet.  I also check the weather, which is at 90 degrees.  The humidity isn't awful, so I decide I won't die.

5:23 p.m.:  Begin the 7 minute process of trying to get a decent picture of myself before I start.  Ended up pulling some strands of hair out of my ponytail as to not subject viewers to the abject horror that is my enormous forefivehead.


(If you can read what's written on my hand and want to know why I'm running around, literally, with "chicken" written on my hand, it's because I had fully intended to go to BJ's Club after work to pick up chicken because my family was coming over for dinner the next day.  Unfortunately, as I got to the parking lot of BJ's, I remember that D has my debit card, so unless I was going to steal the chicken, I was out of luck.)

5:31 p.m.:  Begin running!  I took a picture of my shoe with my housekey sticking off of it because I thought it looked funny.  Later, this would become Grand Irony.



As I'm running, I'm thinking this isn't so bad.  I completed the first set of 60-running-90-walking without issue.  Then completed the second with just a few thoughts of, "Holy crap, I'm out of shape."

Then, right as the third 60-second running ended, it happened.

5:36 p.m. and 50 seconds:  Shoe comes untied, key flies off shoe into grassy, brushy area.

I heard a "PING!" and look down, and my shoe is untied and my key is gone into the oblivion.  I still have 10 seconds to go on my minute, so I run in place until the 60 seconds is up.  Then I start looking for my brass key, which blends in very well with its surroundings.

5:41 p.m.:  Still haven't found key, so I call D who is, luckily, nearby.  He says he'll be there soon.

5:45 p.m.:  Glad I don't own a stopwatch so I had to bring my phone with me.

5:46 p.m.:  D arrives, helps me in my fruitless search.


5:47 p.m.:  A State Trooper, seeing D's car in the turn lane with the flashers on, stops to ask if we're OK.  I tell him I've lost my key.  He laughs, and tells us to have a good night.

5:49 p.m.:  D tells me that since no one knows where I live, if someone finds the key, they wouldn't know which lock it would open, and it would be OK.  We'll just get a new key.  But then. . .

5:50 p.m.: 


5:52 p.m.:  D leaves and I start running again, figuring I can skip the last 90 second walking since I took a. . .15- or so minute lapse.


5:54 p.m.:  Pickup truck drives by and honks and whistles. 

5:59 p.m.:  I'm feeling pretty crappy, so I decide to walk home (walking's still exercise!) and since the 5k isn't until November, I'll have time to work up to the running.  Maybe I'll take this week and do 4 reps of 60-90 and then go up to 8 next week.

(I took another picture at this point, but I look so gross and sad and pathetic, I refrained from posting.)

6:08 p.m.:  Hobbled up the stairs, knees killing me, and did my blood sugar.  Now I know why I was feeling so crappy.



So much for 126!  I had a juice box and another cup of juice and waited for the blood sugar to go up so I could take a shower without passing out and drowning.


6:32 p.m.:  And then, this happened:



So there's that.

I'm going to attempt this all again tomorrow (Wednesday), and what I have learned is the following:

1.  I probably need some kind of fanny pack to carry my blood sugar kit in.

2.  I either need to take off my insulin pump or suspend it whilst run-walking.

3.  I should probably put my key in the fanny pack.

4.  Always carry a phone.

We'll see what happens on Wednesday.


Monday, July 2, 2012

The One with My xoJane Post

Those of you who have known me for a long time know that my legit career aspiration was to work for the now-defunct Jane magazine.  I can actually credit my mom for how I discovered Jane magazine. . .she'd read an article in the newspaper about different types of girls, and how the more traditional girls read Cosmopolitan, but the more off-beat, quirky girls read Jane.  "Have you ever read Jane?" Mom asked.  I hadn't, but I immediately got a subscription, sight unseen.  Us quirky girls, you know, have got to stick together.

And then I fell in love.

The first thing I ever had published in a magazine was a little blurb in the beginning of the magazine.  They'd asked a question. . .something about money going toward sports in schools.  I can't even remember.  But I'd e-mailed in my response and they published it.

They also had these columns called It Happened To Me that paid somewhere between $50 and $100 to people to just tell stories about. . .crazy or weird or strange things that had happened to them.  My plan was, I was going to write one of those, Editor-In-Chief Jane Pratt was going to fall madly in love with my writing style and offer me a job as soon as I graduated college.  It was my plan.

Then Jane Pratt left Jane magazine and Brandon Holley took her place.  At some point, and I can't even remember why, I'd e-mailed the magazine, and Brandon Holley herself e-mailed me back.  Brandon was no Jane Pratt, but oh my God, the editor of the magazine of my dream job had e-mailed me back.

Then, in the summer of 2007, I was a newly-minted college graduate, working a temp job at a pharmaceutical company, waiting for my Big Break, when my friend Ashley e-mailed me with the news.  She was a graphics major in the journalism school at UNC, so she was on these journalism-related listservs. 

"Just saw that Jane magazine is folding," she said.  ":("

And just like that, Ashley ruined all my hopes and dreams and aspirations.

(Just kidding.  I'm just shooting the messanger.)

So I did some Yahoo!ing (you know, before Google was a way of life), and although it was very cloak-and-dagger and very mysterious, it was true: My beloved Jane, the goal of my life, was going under.

Admittedly, the quality had taken a drastic, drastic downturn in the previous few years.  I'd even let my subscription lapse for a while after Jane Pratt left.  But. . .it was Jane.

Fast forward some years, and Jane Pratt has started a new online venture, xoJane.com.  It had a rough start, I think, but then it caught on.  There are lots of different voices on the site (Personally, I'm madly in love with Emily and Daisy, even though the latter has caused some. . .uproars.)  There are some really bitchy voices within the commentors, but there are also some very lovely people.

And they still have It Happened To Me.

I think you know where this is going.

I wrote this.

It was terrifying and exciting and awesome.  So far, the comments have been supportive.

And I like to think it's my one step closer to having Jane Pratt discover me*.






*It should be noted that I applied for a job with xoJane, but I never heard anything from them.  It's just as well:  I'm not sure how D would have felt about moving to Manhattan.

Friday, May 25, 2012

The One with Some Food

I was going to talk about this article, about how Obama's swing states don't like Biden, and that could be a problem, and as I was typing, I was like, "This. . .is. . .boring." 

The blog, not the article.

So I told my cousin, Carrie, about my issue, and she was all, "I'd personally like to see more food recipes and things with food, since I know that's what you're interested in.  If you're interested in it, your readers will be interested."


I've tended to avoid food talk, because I'd started another blog with the express purpose of talking about food, you know, in case someone around here doesn't. . .like food?  Or wasn't interested.  I wanted my "personal" blog and my "food" blog.

Well, seeing as to how I let this blog sit for months at a time with no use and my poor food blog hasn't gotten any love since. . .um. . .December 8, 2012, I think I'll allow the use of food here.  And I'll cross-post with my other blog, so if you're JUST into food, you can follow that one, and if you can go either way, you can follow this one.  Or whatever. I may post stuff over there that I don't post here (Menu Plan Monday, anyone?)

I'm trying to get back into blogging regularly, and talking about food may be just the way to do it.

So while I'm not sharing any recipes at the moment, I just wanted to let people know what to expect.

I'm sure I'll still have my boringish articles, but, you know, we have to eat!


Thursday, May 24, 2012

The One with the Questionable Campaign

So, I have a Morally Ambiguous Situation™ here, and I wonder the general opinion of my. . .2 readers.

This happened.  The gist of it is that this pastor said that all gays (and lesbians!) should be rounded up and locked electric fence-style, men seperate from women, so that the gay gene would die out.

Never mind this doesn't make any sense, as I believe (but don't quote me on this) that most gay people are spawned from hetero parents.  I believe that the pastor in question is a horrible representation of Christianity, and is one of the worst kinds of people.

But. . .I don't know if the article's suggestion of retribution is the best way to go.  He suggests that everyone send a donation to some gay-friendly organization in the pastor's name so the pastor will be innundated with thank you letters from the organizations.  The author provided the pastor's address, phone number, and e-mail with which to do the signing up.

Now. . .at last count, I saw 190 people who had said they were doing this, sending some donation to a group in the pastor's name.

This is where it gets a little sketchy for me.  Is this pastor dead wrong?  Absolutely.  Does he need to be prevented from speaking in public ever again?  Yes.  Yes he does.  Is he the reason so many people hate Christianity?  For sure.

But this seems. . .over-reaching to me.  I don't know.  I can't reconcile it in my head.  What, exactly, are these people hoping to accomplish?  It's awesome that all these organizations are getting donations, but. . .why does it have to be done this way?  I can't decide if someone as douchey as this pastor is also giving up his right to privacy and not wanting to receive literature from these organizations by being douchey.

And then there were a couple of comments left on this article that REALLY bothered me.

One lady ". . .did this for a 'Pro-Life' neighbor, made a donation to Planned Parenthood in his honor. They sent him a letter of acknowledgement. I never heard another word from him about the sinful pro-choice people;-)."

Like. . .it's the guy's right to be anti-abortion, and he's being sort of harassed about it.  What if the guy had sent pro-life literature to this lady?  Would that have been OK, too?  Granted, I don't know if he made a big deal about it or if he was a jerk or whatever, but I don't. . .think it should matter.

Then. . .

"This is an idea I did 30+ years ago to a preacher at a liberal arts college I was going to. Being Southern Baptist and feeling I needed to experience his god...got a postcard from the LDS church out of a magazine and filled in his information. Four years later...he was still wondering why he was getting twice yearly visits from LDS missionaries in the dorm. Last I heard...he had at least two copies of the Book of Mormon and one of the gigantic tome with all the writings in it."

This seems invasive, too.

But it was this one that really raised my hackles:

"I had a similar neighbor and he had a pro-choice bumper sticker on his car. I went over one veeery early morning and overlaid it with a pro-choice bumper sticker. It was weeks before he discovered it."

I feel like this one, if you want to be dramatic, borders on tresspassing and destruction of someone else's property.  At the very least, it made her even more douchey than the pro-life neighbor.  Why do people feel (on both sides of the fence) that if someone disagrees with them, they have the right to mess with the other person?

So what do you think?  Is it good to harass people through the mail?  Are you in the right?  Is the only opinion that matters yours?

This whole thing really bugged me, so I want to know what other people think.

Monday, May 21, 2012

The One with the Diabetes Sisters Conference

I went to a conference this weekend with Diabetes Sisters, a non-profit that works with women with diabetes.  I came across it accidentally, and it sounded pretty awesome, so on a whim, I signed up.  I also signed D up for a new program they did called Partner's Perspective, which was for the boyfriends/fiances/husbands of the women with the 'betes.


It was epic in its epicness.  I have not, since my days of diabetes camp, been in the same room with so many people with malfunctioning pancreases (pancreaii?).

Friday night, we got checked in and did "networking activities," which closely resembled "speed dating," and where we discovered that there were people there from 20 states (as far away as California and Washington) and also Canada, and then afterward, a bunch of people went to the hotel bar, where there was space reserved. 

Since I'd never been to a bar with diabetic people, I waited to see if they were going to be Good Diabetics and just order a Diet Coke, or if they'd be bad normal diabetics and get a drink.  Luckily, we were all normal diabetics there, and had a couple drinks.  (D did come to my table with a low-sugar drink for me, which was awesome -- it was a less sugary margarita, and it was awesome.)


Saturday, the conference started bright and early with yoga and zumba which I skipped, because 7 a.m. is too early for yoga and zumba.  Then we had a full day of sessions about diabetes, living with diabetes, pregnancy and diabetes, eating and diabetes. . .all diabetes-related stuff that will obviously be useful for. . .ever.

A group of four of us skipped out on the last sessions of the day and went out to downtown Raleigh's Artsposure!  Neither of the two sessions really applied to me, so I decided to be sociable (surprising, right?) and it was actually a really good time, walking around and checking out the art and weirdness.

(If you wonder, and I know you do, the two sessions I had to choose from were "Is CGM right for me?" and "Is it time to start on insulin?"  I don't really have an interest in CGM until the new version of my pump comes out and I've been on insulin since I was 4, so neither one really applied.  I'm guessing that the insulin one was mainly for the Type 2's that were there, so it definitely didn't really apply.)

Saturday night, we had a dinner and recognition ceremony where we were all given little picture frames with a group picture in it and it was announced how long we'd all been living with the 'betes, and then it was back to the bar.

Sunday morning, we had a 1-mile walk-a-thon around downtown Raleigh, and then breakfast and two more sessions (I went to the exercise one and the one about sex and diabetes.)


It was an awesome time, because I felt like. . .I don't KNOW anyone else with Type 1 diabetes, except the people I went to summer camp with, and we aren't friends anymore.  It's lonely, really lonely to have support from people on the outside (D is literally the greatest husband I could have asked for, in all aspects, but especially when it comes to supporting me and my damn brokwn pancreas.) but if someone doesn't literally know what you're talking about, if they don't do it themselves every day, there's just no way to know.

I made some great acquaintences that I hope to turn into friends, and I'm definitely going to take part next year.

D also told me that he learned a lot from his sessions, and that it was good for him getting the perspective of other husbands who have had to deal with this crap. . .because it's not just the diabetic that has to deal with it.  It's the people around them, too.

So thanks, Diabetes Sisters, for a a full, awesome, learning weekend.

Friday, May 18, 2012

The One with the Produce Box

I love food.

I think if you know me, even marginally, you know how I feel about food.  I like eating it, cooking it, looking at it, talking about it. . .food has so much potential.

The problem, though, is that a lot of food, especially food you don't cook at home or that you do cook at home, but that somes pre-packaged, isn't food at all.  It's a "food product." 

I drove to D's hometown last week and listened to an audio book I'd picked up sort of arbitrarily.  It's called "In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto" by Michael Pollan.  Sometimes, when I'm listening to audio books on the way to the mountains, a 4-hour drive, I get restless and bored.  This book, though, kept my attention the entire way, and I wanted to keep getting in the car to listen to it further.

He talks about how much extra crap is put into food, how the "Western Diet" is most likely causing "Western Diseases" like Type 2 Diabetes and Heart Disease, and how people can eat the way they're meant to.  (The whole book is based on seven words:  "Eat food.  Not too much.  Mostly plants."

One of the examples he used involved Sara Lee Whole Grain White Bread (which. . .I don't even know how that's a thing.)  One of his points is that people should try to eat things made with 5 ingredients or less.  Bread, at its core, has 4 ingredients:  flour, water, yeast, and salt.  Some people add a little sugar, others a little butter, but you really only need 4 things to make a loaf of bread.

The Sara Lee Whole Grain White Bread, however, has (according to this website):

Enriched Bleached Flour [Wheat Flour, Malted Barley Flour, Niacin, Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Folic Acid], Water, Whole Grain [Whole Wheat Flour, Brown Rice Flour (Rice Flour, Rice Bran)], Wheat Gluten, Skim Milk, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Sugar, Yeast, Butter (Cream, Salt), Contains 2% or Less of Each of the Following: Calcium Sulfate, Salt, Dough Conditioners (May Contain One or More of the Following: Mono- and Diglycerides, Ethoxylated Mono- and Diglycerides, Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Calcium Peroxide, Datem, Ascorbic Acid, Azodicarbonamide, Enzymes), Guar Gum, Calcium Propionate (Preservative), Distilled Vinegar, Yeast Nutrients (Monocalcium Phosphate, Calcium Sulfate, Ammonium Sulfate and /or Calcium Carbonate), Corn Starch, Vitamin D3, Soy Lecithin, Soy Flour.

Wait.  What?  Why is there both high fructose corn syrup AND sugar in BREAD?

So the point was. . .watch what you eat, because you're eating a lot of crap, even in things that should seem healthy.

This is why I prefer cooking at home.

I came across theproducebox.com, which is a CSA sort of thing.  You sign up and pay weekly, so if there's a week nothing appeals to you, you don't have to buy a box, and you get a big box of locally-grown fruits and vegetables and other assorted goodies.  (One week, we got homemade bread.  Best bread ever.)

The best part about the whole thing is that everything comes from North Carolina, and a good majority of it comes from within 60 or so miles.  It's fresh and it's local and the carrots I've had out of these boxes taste better than any supermarket carrot I've ever eaten.


This was the first box we got.  Strawberries, carrots, white sweet potatoes, kale, cilantro, cucumbers, and a type of red lettuce.  Since I like to make kale chips, I ordered two bunches of kale, thinking that one might not be enough.


This was, in fact, false.  There was so much, I ended up using one bunch of it to make kale chips and the other bunch to make kale and ricotta ravioli.

I look forward to the boxes every week, and I'm actually thrilled that I'm using fruits and vegetables that didn't come from Florida.  Or Mexico.

I would highly recommend looking to see if you can get involved in a CSA.  If not, maybe check out farmer's markets.

Because when it comes right down to it, I, personally, don't want a side of Ethoxylated Mono- and Diglycerides with my chicken salad.

The One with the Post That Got Eaten

I wrote this really awesome post about causes I feel are important, and how the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation was one that was especially important to me, and I went into this whole thing about how I support it now, etc.

And then it disappeared.

Which is sort of embarrassing, since I linked it up to a Share Your Cause blog link.  My first link up, and Blogger eats my post.

There's a comment someone left on it, so I know it WAS there, but now it says it's not available.

Anyone know why this might have happened?

Thursday, May 17, 2012

The One with the Birchboxes

Two of the things I love most in life are samples and beauty products.  I have an embarrassing amount of makeup, lotions, cleansers, stuff for my hair, nailpolish. . .it's a little ridiculous.

Back in March, I got an e-mail from a website called Birchbox.com, telling me that "the wait was over!" and that I could sign up for my Birchbox subscription.

Since I'd forgotten I'd put myself on the list, I hadn't necessarily been waiting (I didn't even remember what Birchbox WAS), but when I went to the site, I remembered that you can sign up for $10 a month to get a little box of beauty product samples.

Best thing ever?  Yeah.

I got my first Birchbox in March and have subsequently gotten ones in April and May.  The one for May, I was a little disappointed with, because it was Gossip Girl themed, and I'm not into that, but I got an awesome perfume, nail polish called "Disco Nap," and a BB cream, which I keep hearing about, but had no idea what it was, that looks pretty good on me.

April's was all organic-themed, and the best thing out of that box was the salt scrub.  Apparently, some of the moisturizer out of this box smelled like a man's cologne, according to D, so I just gave it to him.

March's box, however. . .there are still a couple things I haven't tried, but I've loved everything that was in it.  It was the best inaugural box ever.

It starts with a box. . .


How freaking cute is that little box?



In it, there was a nice variety of things.  Two of them, I ended up buying in a full-sized version, one from Birchbox itself, and one from Amazon because, sadly, it was backordered on Birchbox.


This perfume smells like tiny little bunnies hopping up and down a rainbow and frollicking with unicorns.  Legitimately, it is one of the best-smelling perfumes I've smelled in life.  D's not a huge fan of it, and it costs $85 a pop. . .otherwise, I'd have bought out Birchbox's stock of it by now.


These are bits of "fashion tape."  I guess it's what celebrities use in order to wear ridiculously high- and low-cut dresses without showing all.  I haven't used these yet.


This hair elixir, I'm now obsessed with.  I bought a big bottle of it off of Amazon.  It smooths out my hair (which is prone to frizziness, especially now that I'm having it colored) and smells vaguely of vanilla.  Changed my hair life.


This is maybe the most amazing invention I've seen to date.  Stick-on-able eyeliner.  I'm a mess with eyeliner.  I rarely draw it on straight, and I can't do anything fancy with it.  Until now.  (Admittedly, I haven't tried it yet because it intimidates me, but the whole concept is awesome.)


I love how this stuff smells.  It's blemish clearer.  It clears blemishes.  What can I say?  It works.

And last but not least. . .


Stripper to go!  This is another thing I bought.  It's this little. . .finger-of-a-glove looking thing soaked in the best-smelling nail polish remover in life.  You can stick it in your purse, and if you (like me) get to work and notice your nails are looking ridiculously bad and chipped, you can take it right off. 

(Although, I'm not sure what you should do if you're like me and leave on your red polish too long so the parts of your nails it covered turn an icky shade of yellow that looks like your nails are diseased and going to fall off, but OH MY GOD, you guys, it's stain FROM THE NAIL POLISH!)

Ahem.

So that's Birchbox, and, more specifically, my March Birchbox.  I'll have another entry. . .sometime about another thing that I pay to have brought to my door through a really cool service. . .fresh, local farm-grown veggies!

*Note: I wasn't paid for this post. I pay for my own Birchbox subscription; I just legitimately love the service and the products. Birchbox doesn't know who I am. I wish they did.