Sunday, May 21, 2006

Blow out the candles

In a couple of weeks, I will turn 23. Like many people, I sometimes like to reflect on how much I've achieved in 23 years. Let's see: I've graduated from college, lived on my own in Florida and secured the job I wanted at a daily newspaper. Not too shabby, but it could use some work.

There are lots of things I wish I had done, like study abroad in Europe somewhere so I could travel. Also, I wish I had minored in Spanish instead of Political Science. My inability to form a coherent sentence about Spanish or The Constitution proves that I should've taken a different route. I wish I hadn't spent so much on my credit card (granted, most of the purchases went to expensive repairs on my car), because now I'm paying the price, so to speak.

But there's still some time. There are still some things I can do, even in my old age. Before I turn 30, I plan to attend graduate school -- where I will make a point to study Spanish for real, along with my main studies in journalism. During that time, when I have long breaks again, I plan to travel -- and hopefully not just to Europe. I'd also like to run a marathon before I turn 30. I'm training for a half marathon right now...maybe that will spur me on to greater distances. I'd also like to own a condo or a house -- I hate the idea of renting; it seems like a waste of money.

I'll keep you posted on my progress of these lofty goals. In the meantime, I've got a party to plan.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Hummer a little tune

I've now been working in Scottsdale five days a week for five months. There are some things I like - it's pretty, it's clean, it's relatively safe. But there are more than a few things I don't like.

One is how easy it is to pick out a Scottsdale woman: blonde fried hair, leathery tan skin, ugly $1,000 purse, chunky unoriginal Tiffany jewelry and usually some sort of lime green tank top or shirt (why lime green? no idea). It is amazing how similar they all are. They are living examples that upper class doesn't mean class.

Another thing I don't like? The drivers. Now, I don't automatically hate someone who drives an Escalade or a Hummer (well, I do have problems with the impact on the environment but that's a different gripe). But, it seems like drivers in Scottsdale are much MUCH quicker to hit the horn when the car ahead of them doesn't see the green light. And this isn't just a "feeling." My office is on the corner of a busy intersection, and I hear honks all day long from impatient drivers. And yes, I myself have been a victim of Hummer Honking.

How can we fix this scourge of spite? A new law: With every superfluous honk, the driver has to pay $5,000 to Humane Borders, the group that provides water to immigrants crossing the desert. After one day, you'll hear crickets.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Self made man

I recently read "Self-Made Man," a book written by a female LA Times columnist who took time off to spend a year dressed as a man. She received makeup tips from a pro, voice tips from a Julliard coach and worked out her upper body to give her broader shoulders. The book really wasn't what I expected. In the company of these men, the woman found a vulnerability that men very seldom show in front of women. In her experience, men want to show emotion, they want to connect, but they can't. All of the social norms that tell them to be strong are also making them weak.

I didn't love the book the whole time. But I was fascinated by her guts to try the experiment. Talk about first-hand reporting.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Summer blues? I've got the answer!

Summer is coming up, and it's going to be my first as a real adult. That means no time off. Previous summers included snorkeling in Key West, tooling around Payson in my Volvo and serving steaks - "No Rules" style. But this summer will be different. As a full-time employee, I only have a few days of vacation every year. No three-week chunks of free time. (*aside - why did I think I was so busy in college? Every three months I had at least a month of vacation)

So what can I do to make the summer more beachy-keen? Here's some ideas:

* set up a beach umbrella over my desk - to help protect me from the harmful rays of a 1990s Mac

* Bring in my steel drum for a lunchtime luau

* construct a hammock out of paper clips

* put a little paper umbrella in my vending machine Coke Zero

* hang up post cards of all the exotic places I've been - el paso, tucson, birmingham, etc

Ahh. Already feels more like summer.

New Territory

This is my first foray into blogging...thus it might be a total bust!