Another Awkward Week - Christmas Edition! [12.20.13]

Pa rum pum pum pum, everyone! Sorry I'm a little late this AM. I was off receiving the gift of my annual gynecological exam. Merry Christmas, cervix!

Are you guys getting excited for the holidays?! I am SO excited but I also might die of early onset diabetes by next week if I don't cool it with the Chrismas snax. My bloodstream is basically just refined white sugar, brie cheese, caramel corn and wine at this point. Yiiiiikes!

Today is my last day in-office until 2014, I'm spoiled rotten with much vacation time between the holidays so we're headed down to PA tomorrow morning for Christmas with my family and then off to Brian's parents in NJ on the 26th. This is our first Christmas spent together and with each other's families and, as with Thanksgiving, I'm simultaneously excited and also a little mournful about change and growing up and all that business. LIFE! Moving on, sands through hour glasses, etcetera. Enough mourning, Liz: celebrate!

And with that, let's take a look at what was keeping it awkward this (Christmasy!) week.

This Gift:

20131217_084937 (1)

A One Direction Sticker Book for my assistant Margaret (she's basically the greatest person alive), wrapped in romantic silver and gold hearts, the only wrapping paper I could find laying around my office.

At least I wrapped it?

This Wine:

20131219_221543

Ok this actually has nothing to do with Chrismtas but did happen in a bar tricked out with garland and twinkle lights so...it fits.

Last night I had a few drinks with some pals and at the end of the night, the waiter sat down a glass of red wine in front of me, one I hadn't ordered.

"For you..." he said.

I immediately sat up straighter, smiled and tossed my hair. For ME?!?! Was some gentleman watching me from across the room, so taken by my good looks and sex appeal that he noticed what I was drinking and sent one over to me, hoping we might meet eyes and fall in love/lust?! I have only ever seen this in the movies but have dreamed that some day such a classy, sexy thing might happen to me and IT FINALLY HAS!

I was all ready to flash a smile and my engagement ring, give a smug "flattered by taken!" shrug in the direction of my secret admirer when the waiter finished his sentence.

"...I accidentally entered too many, so you can have this one."

Insert that screeeech hitting the breaks noise here as I tumble right off my high horse.

The wine was less sensual come-on and more just, you know, waiter error.

UNLESS the whole reason he accidentally ordered the wine in the first place was because he was so taken with my beauty and charm he just couldn't think straight!

Yeah...let's go with that one.

These Cards:

20131213_134728 (1)

I was in charge of writing up some holiday cards on behalf of my department and OBVIOUSLY barely made it 2 seconds without spilling ramen all over them.

As for personal Christmas cards, I managed to get out about 12 a vast improvement over last year's six! But again, if you did not receive a card from me, remember, I DO love you and think of you at the holidays and always, I just still haven't gotten the hang of the whole mailing cards situation. Maybe someday! Goals!

This Sidewalk:

20131219_075325

We've had a lot o' snow around here lately (I like it!) and apparently this is what counts as "shoveling" on my block? Three days after our latest storm I thought it was safe to wear regular shoes, instead of the clunky snowboots I'd been rocking, only to discover that all the sidewalks, while cleared of the fluffy stuff, were still coated with a thin layer of ice.

I slid and scooted along, carefully, oooooohhhh so carefully, inch by inch by inch. It took me 17 minutes to go the 2 blocks to the subway BUT I didn't fall once.

Victory!

This Ornament:

muppetmuppets xmas

We spend every Christmas Eve with our very dear friends - this year will be our 27th Christmas together! They have three sons right around the same ages as the three of us and we've known each other essentially since we were in utero. Christmas Eve with this gang is my most favorite night of every year, bar none. We are all mildly majorly obsessed with the Muppets Christmas Carol and have, on several occasions, performed our own version of The Christmas Carol (adapted from the movie, obvs) for our parents and it's always hilarious and amazing and we should probably have won at least 17 Tony Awards by now. We've been robbed!

Anyway, their oldest son Robert got married last year to an amazing gal, Jackie, who is a truly spectacular addition to the crew, and this year, Rob & Jackie will spend the holiday with her parents in Louisiana, so our group will be apart for the first year ever. I won't make you listen to yet another dramatic monologue about growing up and changing and sadness and adulthood and life but will just say that we will miss them very, very, VERY much.

I got the amazing idea in my head to send them a Muppets Christmas Ornament, which turned out to be easier said than done. I could not find one single licensed MCC (Mupptes Christmas Carol, duh) ornaments for sale, even on the interwebs, so I had the brilliant thought to make my own DIY ornament. There are zillions of sites where all you have to do is upload a photo, hit send and voila: your own personalized ornament.

Except I guessss you can't just upload any old picture you find on Google Images because when I tried this at Zazzle.com, they told me it violated their acceptable content guidelines.

Bah humbug!

I was initially impressed by their excellent legal team, catching this one little order, but then realized I may have tipped them off myself. The gift message with order read:

"Merry Christmas! This is ridiculous and probably violates copyright law, but I wanted to make sure you guys had some Muppets in your holiday this year!"

(Emphasis added.)

I basically handed them this one on a platter. What a terrible criminal I would be! Just walk into a bank with a bunch of counterfeit bills and a note reading "LOL these are fake!!"

So Rob, Jackie, you're not getting a Muppets Ornament this year. But please know that all of us kids and parents and Rizzo the Rat and the Ghost of Christmas Present (a LARGE absent minded spirit!) and Michael Caine and Charles Dickens (aka Gonzo) and Charles Dickens (the real person, RIP) and the whole gang will miss you terribly and wish  you the very merriest of Christmases!

God Bless Us, Everyone!

These Skirts:

photo

Happy Annual Everybody Wear Your Inappropriately Short Festive Skirt To the Office and Pretend it's a Coincidence Even Though You Totally Planned It Day!

Like, so planned it that we had a calendar reminder and everything.

calendar reminder

It's the little things that keep the holiday spirit alive, you know?

This Tin:

20131220_070140

A Christmas bribe!

We're totally in love with our apartment and desperately want to stay at least one more year, so we're actively trying to remind our landlady why we're the very best tenants ever and she so shouldn't raise the rent on us. We thought that a Christmas gift and card would be nice just in general and also would help demonstrate how invaluable and amazing we are. The plan was cookies and an ornament...except the cookies have now been sitting in this tin since Sunday night and I can't, for the life of me, find the godforsaken ornament we bought for her. WHERE ARE YOU, ornament?!

She might just end up getting a card reading:

"Merry Christmas! Please enjoy some stale cookies and also we got you an ornament but lost it, whoops, please never raise our rent and Happy New Year! Love, Liz & Brian"

How could she ever kick us out after receiving that?!

And speaking of our landlady, I know you've all been dying to see, here is this year's Christmas decor:

20131219_231836

Classy in blue and silver. I actually LOVE this year's display! Understated and sparkly. I'm into it.

And, of course, the seals make their annual return to the foyer:

20131219_231947

Oh those two!

And, finally, because it's never Christmas without it, let's all pause and watch...

The Most Awkward Christmas Commercial of All Time: 

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=zZnqBL6iYjA]

'Tis the season for creepy sibling love!

And there you have it, friends. What are you all up to for Christmas? Any trips planned? Cookies baked? Presents under the tree? You're Jewish and don't celebrate? My bad! You're offended that I say Merry Christmas instead of Happy Holidays? Oh BAH HUMBUG!

Wishing a Happy Merry WHATEVER to everyone near and far. I hope a lily white Santa brings you everything you wished for and more.

Hugs & Mistletoe, Liz Ho Ho HO!

Another Awkward Week [12.13.12]

Good morning, turtledoves! 3 posts in 3 days? A Christmas miracle! Speaking of Christmas, it is in 12 days. What?! Mind boggling, y'all. Have you finished your shopping? I have...not. Even close. Still plenty of time for me to run around the office stealing free books to hand out. It'll be fine!

Do you guys like Christmas music? OF COURSE YOU DO! What are you, monsters? My friend Kathleen recently turned me on to this internet radio website called Songza, which is like Pandora but better. You go to the site and they offer you a variety of stations based on your mood.

"Good morning" it greets you. "It's Friday morning. What do you feel like hearing?"

It then lists a wide variety of genres you could pick from - holiday, pop, classical, instrumental, et cetera- and then narrows those down even further. Do you feel "Too Cool for Yule"? If yes, would you like Indie Holidays or Christmas Schmaltz, which is holiday songs written by Jewish musicians? (Answer: both!) Do you want pop? If yes, you can choose "All I Want for Chrismas is POP!" (emphasis theirs) or Teen Pop Christmas, whose description reads:

"Embrace your inner teenybopper with these teen idol holiday hits. Whether you grew up in the Golden Age of Boy Bands or with the current crop of Disney stars, these songs will have you singing along."

I obviously listened to that one, unironically, for HOURS UPON END and loved every second.

I'm still not sure what an Ariana Grande is...but I like it.

So that's what's going on round there parts. Just a Helpful Holiday Tip from my home to yours.

Ho ho ho!

Now, why don't we take a look at what was keeping it awkward this festive, frigid week.

This Whole Thing:

20131209_140152

We had our company holiday party on Monday night, once again leaving me to risk ruining a day-to-night outfit by spilling my lunch upon it. Took the bib route one further by creating a full-body shield, consisting of a scarf wrapped around my lower half and my "desk sweater"  buttoned way way up to cover the top. My desk sweater is, of course, the cardigan that I leave at my office to wear on days when it gets nippy inside...I think it's been here for like 4 years and has never been washed. Haha GROSS LIZ.

Anyway, this was all a pretty smooth move to cover up, as it took me less than 12 seconds to cover my lap in salad.

20131209_130903

Not pictured: the chick pea that bounced off my knee and rolled under my desk. Don't worry, I found it and threw it away!

So this holiday party. As I may have mentioned before, my company merged with another big publishing company earlier this year (fascinating stuff), so this was our first holiday celebrating together. My company has never had a big formal Christmas party - instead we celebrate Halloween with our big, drunken in-office costume party.

The other company, however, does a whole big formal thang and this year everyone from both groups was invited to come party down in a hotel ballroom in midtown Manhattan. It was very swanky and fancy and very, very, VERY crowded. So I did what I always do in situations where I feel socially anxious and overwhelmed, which is zero in on the food table, load up a plate, find a corner to hide in and stuff. my. face.

I managed to drop a piece of fancy deli meat on the floor at one point and must have also dropped part of a pulled pork slider, because when I got home that night I realized that one of my  party heels was covered in barbecued pulled pork.

Smooth.

After gorging ourselves on too much salty Asian food (the buffet situation in this place was off the hook!), my colleague and I decided it was time to throw in the towel and headed off in search of large bottles of water (we were literally puffing up right then and there from all the sodium & wine) and trains home to bed.

Before we headed home we took a pit stop in the bathroom. We saw the sign for the men's room in one corner and couldn't find the ladies' anywhere.

A large man neither of us had ever seen before (he's probably like our new CFO or something, please no one fire me) was standing near us and noticed our predicament.

"Go in the men's room," he said. "It's for ladies'."

"No...mens' rooms are for...men?" We replied.

"Not tonight."

We couldn't decide if we were being tricked or if he was some kind of creep luring women into the men's room (again, potential new CFO, please forgive our misunderstanding! I'm sure you're a great guy!) so we tentatively walked over to the bano and sure enough, found this:

20131209_200745

SUPER CLEAR MESSAGING, guys. Men's room...Women Only.

I guess that the actual ladies' room was further away from the ballroom and since publishing is about 97.3% female, they figured they'd do the gals a favor and switch up the rooms for the night but it seemed a little unnecessarily complicated for my taste.

I sound SO ungrateful right now and I don't mean to! It was a really nice party and I appreciate that my company put it together for us ... I just thought this was funny. I also dislike large parties full of strangers and small talk and need to work on my social skills like STAT.

Let's look at another Christmassy moment...

This Coat:

20131207_142711

This is a terrible photo. ANYWAY, as you can see my puffer is covered in goop. That'd be tree sap, my friends.

Brian and I got a Christmas tree over the weekend from a vendor about a mile walk away and carried it the whole way home (#humblebrag) upon which point we were positively covered in sticky pine sap.

Both my coat and good leather gloves were complete disasters. I took to the internet to come up with a solution and they recommended peanut butter for leather (ok) and hand sanitizer for other fabrics. Doable!

I have scrubbed my coat three separate times now and it's still not all out...at least it's super germ free and sanitized? and the PB DID get the sap out of my gloves, but now they're covered in nut butter so...yeah. Upgrade?

And while I'm allowing snippets of sentimentalism this week (gross!) here is a photo of a very cute ornament that our friends Caitlin & Brian sent us. Our first ornament for our first Christmas tree together!!

20131207_160947

BARF.

And finally,

This Game:

Have you guys heard of Ellen DeGeneres? She's a famous television personality and super smooth dancer. She's also now the creator of this app / game thing called Heads Up and if you've not yet downloaded it, I recommend you do it IMMEDIATELY.

It's basically a digital edition of like, celebrity meets charades meets taboo meets other fun party games... just trust me, it's awesome.

One member of the group holds the phone to their forehead and presses play. The app will then display a word and the rest of the group will have to try to make them guess what it is using clues, be they verbal or physical or even humming. You can pick from songs or celebrities or news or a whole bunch of categories and it is SUPA FUN andddd doesn't require anything more than a cell phone which you probably already had out on the table anyway because your'e rude and addicted to snap chat so you can play it anywhere, anytime, with anyone!

My pals and I were out at a pretty quiet bar on Saturday night (where, side note, I tried whiskey again and NOPE STILL DISGUSTING!) and decided to play a rousing 750 rounds of this game. There were a few other patrons in the bar, most of whom seemed more delighted than annoyed by our antics...that is, until we got to the charades round, where I LITERALLY drove a couple from the bar while trying to mimic the word "hurdle."

I mean, sure you're on a date night, cozied up on a couch, enjoying some intimate cocktails,  but I don't see how a grown woman galumphing into your space, leaping and flailing her arms and screeching really ruins your night, party poopers.

Live a little!

Bonus fun thing for this game is that the app also tapes what the group is doing - so while the guesser is holding it up to their head, it's recording all the funny yelling and flailing and acting that the rest of the crew is doing. You can then send these videos right to Ellen and if they're good, she might play them on her show! It was too dark for us to capture clear videos but thought I'd share that fun fact in case you're trying to become the new Sophia Grace or whatever.

Woo woo!

And there you have it. The week that 'twas! Have yourselves a merry little weekend and if you're shopping for me, I'd like a unicorn, please!

xoxo

Liz Ho Ho Ho

Another Awkward Week [12.6.13]

Hola, amigos! How was everyone's Thanksgiving?! Or have we completel moved on past el dia del pavo and on to le mele Kalikimaka?

It's my blog and I will misuse as many languages in one sentence as I see fit!

Mine was kind of hectic, travelling up and down Amtrak's Northeast Corridor, but ultimately fun. The crown jewel of course, was the reemergence of the Turkey Hats. This year Brian got in on the fun. Clearly he's thrilled.

IMG_20131129_173427

Welcome to the family, champ.

The other crown jewel, since the best crowns have multiple jewels, according to my close, personal BFF Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton (or as I call her, Skip) (it's an inside joke, you wouldn't understand), was my 10 Year High School Reunion. It was truly a night to remember...though some parts are fuzzier than others. Open bar FTW. I'm in the midst of writing a comprehensive, insightful and obviously hilarious recap of that whole thang but that's not quite ready for public consumption so for the probably one person eager to read that (Hi Ben!!!), 'tis coming, I swear.

I actually had high intentions to blog errryday in December (William's calling it Blogmas!) but so far I'm 0 for 6. Wait, no, this counts, hah, so I'm 1 for 6! 

#MATH

I'm also completely unprepared with stories & photos for this week, so while we're talking numerically, why don't we just briefly take a look back at the facts & figures of the week that was. Some might call this a cop-out and I might call them correct. 

What Was Keeping It Awkward This Week: By The Numbers!

TWENTY-FOUR

The Number of blocks I walked after work last night to get my engagement ring resized, only to discover the jewelry store had up and moved locations.

 

SEVEN

Number of stops I then rode on the subway before I realized I was headed in the wrong direction.

 

SEVEN HUNDRED AND SEVENTY
Number of words I have written up about my high school reunion so far. WHOA.

 

JUST ONE
Number of strange European men who approached me in the subway this week, announced "What is the word! It's the word! It's a thing I learned in English, What's the word!" and then ran away.

 

ELEVENTY ZILLION
Number of times consecutively that I have listened to Kelly Clarkson's new Christmas JAM, Underneath the Tree.

 

EIGHT

Number of decorative Santas currently on display in my home. Plus 6 snowmen, 3 scented candles, a large felt banner spelling Merry Christmas and 2 stockings. And we're getting a tree this weekend! It's a Mother-Elfing Winter Wonderland up in this piece!

 

SIX

Number of times in a row I have now worn my one decent pair of black tights without washing them. Mom, please put some tights in my stocking this year, things are getting pretty disgusting.  

 

EVERY SINGLE ONE

Number of outfits I wore this week that now bear salad dressing stains.

 

THREE
Number of times I've taken this Which Love Actually Character Are You Quiz, hoping to learn some Real Truths about myself.

So far, I've learned I am like Annie, the Prime Minister's head of house, you know, this bitch who calls Natalie "the chubby one"

 Annie lA

According to these results, I like being in charge and am good at making people happy. (At least one of those is verrry true.)

Quiz Two told me I am Karen aka the heroine of the saddest and possibly best (JK they're all the best!) storyline in the film:

 Karen

 

This reveals that I'm "the type of person who loves to stay in on a snowy night with a glass of wine and an old record. You have a great sense of humor and would do anything for your family."

That is actually true! Go me, I sound great. Except will this mean I end up crying while listening to Joni Mitchell, wondering if I should wait around to find out if it's just a necklace, or if it's sex and a necklace, or if, worst of all, it's a necklace and love? Would I stay, knowing life would always be a little bit worse? Or would I cut and run?

(Is the fact that I can quote that entire scene from memory admirable or pathetic? Please don't tell me.)

And the final time gave me the best possible answer: SAM!

 Sam

Apparently I am "creative, wise beyond my years, and very determined. I would break any and all laws to be with the one I love."

Hell yeah! Now let's go get the shit kicked out of us by love!

And that, my beautiful, unique snowflakes was my week. How was yours? What Love Actually character are YOU?!?!?!? Let’s just talk about Love Actually all day and forever and always and do nothing productive. Who’s with me?

Xoxo Liz 


Another Awkward Week [12.28.12]

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas or Hanukkah or Kwanza or Winter Solstice or Non Denominational December Vacation Day or whatever it is you might celebrate. I spent the last week at home in Pennsylvania and it has been lovely. I did all of my favorite things: watched Muppet Christmas Carol multiple times, went to the movies, hung out with my family, wept in the bathtub while drinking wine and reading a sad book (every year I save up my saddest entertainment for when I go home, last year it was the FNL finale, so that I can get in a good bubble bath cry. That's normal, right?), ate myself into oblivion and generally had a blast. Plus, we had a White Christmas! 20121224_174206

So pretty!

Despite all the fun, I couldn't help feeling like this Christmas went by too quickly. I know it is a cliche to say that every year goes quicker than the last, but 2012 really seemed to zip by. I'm going to make a concerted effort in the New Year to try to focus on the moment and slow things down.

But talking about the passage of time is a surfire snooze inducer, so let's change the subject! Here's what was keeping it awkward this festive holiday week:

This Photo ID:

20121228_074513-1

Because it is FINALLY legal! I know you've all been a part of this license saga from the beginning, so I'm pleased to share that I have finally renewed my drivers license and am once again a functioning member of society. Or at least just a semi-functioning person who is now allowed to drive a car. I'd suggest you all get off the road now.

This picture is horrible. My DMV clerk was about 60, a woman with long grey hair in two pigtails done Native American style with multiple bands at intervals down the plait and had tons of turquoise jewelery adorning her periwinkle fleece vest. She spoke in a very condescending, strange way "ok now you use this nice pen to sign your beautiful signature...there you go! good job!" and kind of creeped me out. I tried to smile in a serene, mature way because, I don't know why, I'm insane, and the photo is clearly hideous. But after old pigtails asked me why I "hid my pretty teeth" I couldn't decide if she was being insulting or encouraging so just choked and told her to hit print.

WOOF!

These Sweaters:

20121224_211942

Just kidding, they are amazing. My favorite holiday tradition is Christmas Eve. We've spent the past 26 years celebrating with our very dear family friends and every year is better than the last. This year we were gifted some seriously sassy holiday sweaters. Damn we look good.

This Trivial Pursuit Card:

J

Which came up during family game night on my turn to read. Specifically the yellow question which asks: "Which Greek philosopher's last words before dying of hemlock poisoning, were: "I owe a cock to Asclephius; will you repay him"?

The answer is Socrates. And also, no, Liz is NOT mature enough to read a question about someone owing someone else a cock during family game night...

This Blob:

Rug

This is a horrible photo but trust me when I say it depicts a giant red wine stain on my mom's living room carpet, courtesy of yours truly. Merry Christmas, Mom! Oh, and your birthday is December 25? Great! Stained rugs are the gift that keep on giving.

This Television:

20121227_101902

My Christmas gift from my amazing, generous mama but we forgot to consider an exit strategy. Today I'll attempt to lug this thing from Pennsylvania to Brooklyn via public transport. Should be totally smooth.

This Christmas Ornament:

webshare_1356698923120

One of my favorites on the tree! I made this in AP English in HS (I swear the curriculum was more vigorous than this craft would suggest) and every year it gets funnier and funnier. I'm not sure what's the best part of that acrostic. Is it using "available" as an adjective (so desperate) or "BOOTYLICIOUS!" in all caps (so delusional) or the fact that I spelled "intelligent" incorrectly (so...dumb!). Intellegent. Oh I slay myself.

Good thing I've really matured and changed since then...

And finally, the gem to end all gems that ever were gems:

This Advertisement:

IMG_20121227_164048

Yes, read closely, that is an ad for Central PA's finest rural sex club The Hedo Farm Resort. They're having a New Years' Eve Party that includes a champagne toast, DJ Dance Party and "Country-Style Breakfast" at 1 AM. I don't know about you, but to me, nothing says "hot sex club" quite like a late night buffet of creamed chipped beef and toast. Do you think they provide bibs so you don't spill on your harness or exposed breasts?

I went to the website (www.thefarmtravelclub.com SO WORTH whatever spam this will send me) and this place is BEYOND. I realized that the only examples I've seen of sex clubs are from like, Castle, when Castle & Beckett had to go investigate an S&M murder and they had witty banter and crackling tension or something, if that hasn't happened, I'm sure it will, but I've always assumed they'd be a little, you know, sexy. This place is potentially the least sexy sex club you could imagine. It is set on 40 acres of beautiful land, the party palace is an old farmhouse, which was hopefully formerly owned by someone Amish. They have two hottubs, a pool with a sun deck (clothing optional!) a beach volleyball pit (clothing suggested...by me...you don't want to be a diving dig with you cooch exposed, ouch), 25 "themed party rooms" and are BYOB. They have a very strict business casual dress code which emphasizes slacks as appropriate attire for both men and women.

"Everyone grab your chinos, we're going swinging!'

They also offer RV hookups, places where you can pitch a tent...both in your pants and in the woods (ba dum, ping!)...and are obsessed with food. Every night there is a buffet and every morning they offer a continental breakfast that prominently features danish. DANISH!

"So great to watch you screw my wife last night. Could you pass me another danish?"

Also, the owner's names are HERBY AND JUDY and their logo is a cartoon horse with the slogan "helping you horse around."

Basically this ad is the best Christmas gift I've ever received and I will see you all at the Hedo Farm Resort on New Years Eve. Get there early, the prime rib and stuffed haddock buffet starts at 6!

And there you have it. The last awkward week of 2012 - how wild is that? How did you spend your holiday?

xo Liz Ho Ho Ho (last time this year, I swear!)

Another Awkward Week - Christmas Edition! [12.21.12]

A Very Merry Christmas and a Happy Apocalypse to you all! Today is my last day, a half day!, in the office before a week-long holiday break. Just 4 hours to go before I meet up with my dear friend for one of my favorite new holiday traditions. We pack ourselves and our overstuffed bags into her tiny red VW beetle and road trip back to PA, blasting Christmas music and stopping just once, in New Jersey to load up on Wendy's burgers & frostees. This year we're adding her pet kitten to the mix. Should be a wild ride! It is also possibly all of our last day on earth, depending on how much trust you want to put in those wacky Mayans. I've survived enough End of Days scares (like this one!) to feel confident that this one is a hoax, but the weather out there sure is ominous. Torrential downpour is not really the greatest conditions in which to be lugging two gigantic suitcases + one grocery bag full of bags of potato chips, which seemed like a great idea at the time, what are road trips without chips, but is now seeming a tad superfluous. Also, somehow I managed to walk out the door this morning in this getup:

skittles

I look like a bag of Skittles. Bring on the Appocalypse!

Now without further ado, here's what else was keeping it awkward this week...and this whole holiday season:

This Poinsettia:

pointsettia

Because when I brought her home a few weeks ago she was the beautiful, lush creature you see on your left but after a few weeks at Casa del Hobags, she is the spindly, dead, leafless thing on the right. How was I supposed to know that poinsettias require water to live, just like all other plants on earth? I mean, come on.

Also, fun fact I just learned via Wordpress spellcheck - did you know there is no  "t" in the middle of poinsettia? No point, just some poin. WHO KNEW?!

These Cards:

cards

Because I really tried this year to be the kind of thoughtful, with-it gal who sends beautiful holiday cards to all of her loved ones but I just couldn't get it together. Half a dozen cards in I'd managed to write out three envelopes to incorrect addresses and spell one of my cousins' names wrong.* So I threw in the towel. If you don't get a card from me, it's not that I don't love you. I do! I'm just lazy. Consider this my Christmas card to the whole world. You're welcome!

*Don't worry cousin, I still sent it. You'll know who you are when you open it! 

These Skirts:

skirts

Because my colleague and I wore matching festive holiday get-ups to the office yesterday. We pretended it was a random coincidence but I am confessing now in front of millions of internet readers: we totally planned it, just for the attention.

(Also I might want to consider making "get longer skirts" a New Years Resolution, yikes.)

This Candy Cane:

candy cane

Because it is pickle flavored!! And it is DISGUSTING! I love pickles and I love candy canes, but just like two redheads shouldn't date, these are two things that just shouldn't mix.

I tricked my roommate into eating it by telling her it was sour apple flavored. MWAHAHAHA!

Just kidding, Santa! I've been good!

This Big Box:

presentBecause inside is Brian's Christmas present! I was so excited to surprise him with his dream gift, a skateboard, until last weekend when he told me he planned to go buy himself a skateboard the following day. What resulted was about 45 minutes of idiotic back and forth, Who's On First style confusion wherein I tried to dissuade him from doing so without admitting that I'd already purchased one and he became increasingly upset that I wasn't supporting his dream of learning to skateboard until I finally had to admit what was in the big box. Le sigh. Surprises are for dummies.

He's going to break his beautiful face and it will be all my fault!

This Song:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ik_kznmI324]

Because Oh My God, have you heard this?? I just discovered it this year, it is even MORE ridiculous than Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer.  It's a song about a Christmas Donkey that sounds like it's being sung by one of the Mario Brothers.

PS: huge ups to whoever made this music video.

And while we're on the subject...

This Music Video:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B2rG3qmKG8w]

Which was recommended for me after I viewed the Dominic song. An Italian rip-off of Adam Sandler's Hanukkah Song, starring a mustachioed finger pupped.

No. Just....no.

This Commercial:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZnqBL6iYjA]

Because I've shared it before, but once is never enough. Nothing says Merry Christmas like incestuous sexual tension.

And I'll leave you here, with that sexy video and a few photos of my landlady's holiday decor, because I know you've been curious! She kind of scaled it back this year, but did add a few pieces of flair:

connie4

Front of the house...the dead Halloween pumpkins are a great addition.

connie7Front lights at night

connie5Table in the foyer, complete with faux snow, stuffed baby seals and pine scented air spray so she can make the whole place smell like a Christmas tree.

connie1In the foyer

connie2And up the stairs.

Wishing everyone a Very Merry and Very  Awkward Christmas.

xo Liz Ho Ho Ho

(only a few more days I can call myself that, I'ma ride it out as long as possible)

Another Awkward Week [12.17.12]

Good morning, everyone! As the Bangles once said, it is just another Manic Monday. I'm popping in today with my Week in Review regularly scheduled for Fridays. I try to keep things pretty light and goofy and self-absorbed round these parts but when I sat down to write on Friday afternoon, those emotions were pretty hard to come by. I won't say much about the Connecticut tragedy here because, really, what could I say, aside from "Good news, I've invented a time machine!," that could make any sort of a difference?  My thoughts remain focused on peace and comfort as we start a new week.

[Insert awkward segue from sincerity back to self absorption here.]

I hope everyone had a nice weekend, for me it was one of the best. Friday I went on a double date to the theatre! Well, a high school play, but that totally counts. The drama club at the high school where Brian teaches was performing Clue: The Movie live on stage and it was a masterpiece. I'm not joking. I'm going to start spending every weekend watching High School plays. That's totally normal, right? Saturday we were invited to a few holiday parties, all being held in our neighborhood. Any excuse for me not to have to leave Brooklyn is a true Christmas miracle. We wined and dined and in between parties we saw the ceremonial lighting of what is billed as The Largest Menorah in the World:

menorah

I feel like there must be a larger menorah out there somewhere, like, this is not that tall, but what do I know. I'm a Gentile.  Fun idea for anyone out there looking to make the Guinness Book of World Records: you now have 365 days to start crafting an even larger menorah. Hop to it!

Then yesterday, I hosted a group of my girlfriends for a Classy Christmas Brunch and it was a smash success. I was determined to make this a Pinterest-worthy affair better than what any Bullshit Blogger might conceive of and, listen, I don't want to brag too much but I think I nailed it. I don't have many photos because I was too busy having a good time to take artful shots of like, my manicure while holding a mug of steaming cider or whatever but as you can see from this one beautiful snap, not only was there a glittering Christmas tree and a champagne cocktail with fresh cranberries floating in it, but I filled a frickin mason jar with candy canes.

xmas

Like. A. Boss. I didn't even see that on the internet or anywhere. Just came up with it all by myself.

Goddamn it I'm good.

And that was the weekend! Here's what else kept it awkward last week:

This Hat: 

hat

A holiday gift from some media colleagues. I'm really pulling it off.

This Car:

latersbaby

It's tough to read but what you're seeing is your standard mini-van decked out with those cutesy stickers depicting their perfect family of four...directly next to a 50 Shades of Grey bumper sticker featuring Christian Grey's catchphrase "Laters Baby" above a pair of handcuffs. Mommy Porn personified.

"What's this sticker say, Mommy?"

"Well, Tommy, Mommy and Daddy are getting their groove back thanks to bondage role play and terrible literature."

#gross

This Video:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nn-dD-QKYN4]

Because it is hilarious and because I am so guilty. Are you guys on instagram? I've become totally addicted and this video pretty much hits the nail on the head. Making matters more awkward, I have to admit that I had to watch it twice, the first time I missed most of the jokes because I was busy instagramming (now a verb!) this pointless photograph of a popcorn tin:

instagram

 Social media, you're ruining us all! Follow me on Instagram @LizHo914!

And there you have it! I thought I had more stories to share but I'm coming up blank. Just five  more days until my long winter's nap and I am phoning. it. in. I promise to be back with more hilarity soon!

Have a holly jolly week & make sure to hug someone today. Love is contagious.

xoxo Liz Ho

Another Awkward Week [11.30.12]

Good morning to you all and happy Friday! What a long week. It was strange how early Thanksgiving fell this year (the earliest statistically possible! #math), that a week has already passed and we're still in November. I dove headfirst into the Christmas spirit the moment Santa's sleigh pulled into Herald Square last week and have been listening to Holiday Tunez and decorating all week - I recently downloaded that website / app/ whatever called Spotify mostly so that I could listen to Taylor Swift for free (I know, I KNOW).  It links to your Facebook account so all of your friends can see what kind of music you're into. I've been getting ragged on all week for my Holiday endless stream of Christmas music,  which include copious amounts of James Taylor and the new John Travolta/Olivia Newton John album "This Christmas" (lol THIS COVER!). My pals are so rude! Olivia N-J is a living treasure, these people wouldn't know Holiday Spirit if it punched them in the face. Which it wouldn't. It's far to sweet for that!  

Moving on! Here's what else was keeping it awkward this week:

This Pen:

pen

And not just because this is the corniest picture I've ever taken. It's a wonderful pen with flowing purple ink. I always leave pens and markers uncapped on my desk and get ink all over my arms and shirt sleeves. Well, yesterday, I went to the ladies room and pulled down mis pantalones and saw I had purple ink on my LEG. On my upper thigh. Hence a photo of the pen, not the ink stained leg, this isn't that kind of blog. HOW did it get there?? The pants were black (one of the 3 pairs of skinny black pants I wear every day on rotation), so I couldn't see if there was purple smeared all over them. Did I black out and stick the pen down my pants? I don't think I'll ever solve this mystery!

These Nylons:

stockingsBecause I realized while doing laundry this weekend that I have over a dozen pairs of nude knee-high pantyhose. What woman under the age of 84 needs that many pair of flesh toned stockings? Me, apparently. <3 each and every pair. I also realized that it's not easy to take a photo of a pile of nude pantyhose, so I tried several angles and backdrops and then made this beautiful collage. DO feel free to print out and frame. It's the perfect holiday gift for all of your loved ones!

This Pillow: 

etsy

Because YES it is embroidered with a giant image of Martha Stewart's face. Creepy? Yet adorable. Etsy has a Holiday Pop Up Shop in SoHo in NYC for the next two weeks, I stopped by last night and spotted this beauty.  I actually totally love it and want it, please. If you're in NYC I'd recommend stopping by, it's a great place to look for gifts! They are not yet selling my beautiful knee-high pantyhose portrait series but do have lots of other cute stuff. I got THE most perfect lil gifties for my godson and his brother, I can't wait to share!

This CD: les mis

Because it arrived for me earlier this week and, when not rocking out to All I Want for Christmas is You, I've been listening to this bad boy and yes, I'm not afraid to admit, occasionally signing along. Oh, did I mention this has been happening in the workplace? My colleagues adore me. But I can't stop, I'm OBSESSED, just 26 more days til the movie comes outtttt, but who's counting. I'll have some deep thoughts on Les Mis for y'all next week. If you're not familiar with this epic musical, I'd suggest you spend the weekend catching up.

Also awkward: a friend reminded me this CD is available online, and for free and asked who still buys actual CD's anymore. Apparently the same people who own 67 pairs of nude pantyhose, that's who... It literally never even occurred to me to download this online. Hah! Welcome to the 21st Century, Liz.

This Hairball: 

wig

Because it's just a harmless wig, but it looks grotesque and scared me witless earlier this week. You may have noticed I never shared my Halloween costume here with y'all, because it wasn't as grand (or nearly as nude) as years past. In totally un-Liz Ho fashion, I put something half assed together at the last minute and went as Taylor Swift, with whom I am apparently now obsessed. It was actually pretty cute, even thought basically no one knew who I was supposed to be and one gal even called me Hanna Montanna. Sigh.

swifty

Anyway! The coupe de grace of the whole costume was that blonde wig, which I  tossed in the back of my closet after Halloween night. Earlier this week I was crouched down, digging through my closet for winter clothes and spotted that grotesque plastic bag of hair lingering in a dark corner. I thought it was an animal, screamed, and fell over backwards. Terrifying! I might need to do some home organization this weekend...

And there you have it, folks! How was your week? Did you do anything ridiculous? Do you love James Taylor? Did you buy me a Christmas present yet?

xoxo Liz

One Awkward Farewell

Ho Ho Ho! Christmas is right around the corner - is everyone ready? I am not. I'm still feeling a little lacking in spirit, overwhelmed, like nothing's in its right place.  Work to finish, cookies to bake, "Love Actually" to watch 16 times (min), gifts to wrap, gifts to buy. Everyone might just get a coupon for One Free Hug this year. And some special people will get coupons for One Free Stevie Wonder. Ha, no! No one's getting an SW - I'm just going to beat that joke into the ground. And then lie down next to it and make my butt clap.

 

AAAAAAH!

 

No, no, no. I just wanted to start off with some silly stuff because I have some sad, sad news to share. A Dynasty has fallen. The HoBags have been defeated. After 14 hard-fought weeks, we've been eliminated for the 2010 season, just one game away from the top. It's a tough break, sure, but we're all taking it OK, I think. Except for DeSean Jackson who totally cried into his quiche at the post-game brunch.

It helps that we were toppled by a worthy opponent; a solid team helmed by QB Michael Vick, a man who is currently living literally my favorite thing in the world: a sports-related moral comeback.

I'm already working on scripts for the movie version of his life. It will be like "The Wrestler" meets "Lassie," starring Jamie Foxx as MV (my search history now contains "black actors who look like Michael Vick," yikes), and me, obviously, as his tough-as-nails, slightly trashy lady love/baby momma who teaches him how to love, to live, to be a man. Post-prison he returns to the field, stronger, more focused - he rebuilds his relationship with his children and eventually the courts award him the right to own a dog. Then, one desperate Sunday, after his team (Fantasy, not the Eagles, let's stay grounded in reality here) is defeated by the HoBags, weakness takes over. He drives to his old neighborhood, to the dog fighting pits, but when he gets there, his former dog fighter friends are angry with him for blowing up their spot - and they beat him senseless, leaving him for dead. And kidnapping his dog! But then, his brave, strong pit bull, Conan (after O'Brien, MV's favorite late night host) escapes from the captors and rescues Vick, moments before death.

"You saved me," Vick whispers, urgently, pressing his face into Conan's fur. "You. Saved. Me." He weeps. Conan licks away his tears.

AND SCENE.  (The Oscars have just been renamed the LizHos.)

But I digress. This isn't about Michael Vick, it's about the HoBags. A team full of strength, courage, wisdom, humor, talent, running ability, good catching hands and sex appeal. They are the greatest group of men I have ever pretended to know. My heroes.

We'll reunite this spring for our annual team retreat (this year: Colonial Williamsburg!) but until then, send us home, Boyz.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w7aBGh9tJWg]

One Awkward Office Party

Liz Lemon: I'm feeling pretty drunk. Jack Donaghy: Well, it's business drunk, it's like rich drunk. Either way, it's legal to drive.

 I don't know if it's like, nervous adrenaline, or flourescent lighting or the exhausting task of acting "professional," but any time I drink in like, a corporate setting I get instantly drunk. 1 professional beer = 3 regular life beers. I get overly chatty and loopy but also so terrified to speak, at all, for fear of what I might say. And, meanwhile, everyone around me is feeling the same buzz and my bosses start talking about like, Match.com or their kids or their, I don't know, pregnancy scares or something and I just kind of stand there and absorb it all in a very hazy way. As if I'm under water, floating, like a little piece of coral dressed in business casual attire.

We just had our department holiday party. I won't go into the details but it was as awkward as is to be expected. There were speeches (kill me!) and a Secret Santa (seriously! do it!) but no one called me Carol so, let's chalk it up as a win. Alsooo I walked away with the new Kanye West album and now I'm straight up jamming in my office. I am so hood! (I don't know what that means?!)

One of the very worst parts about 'business drunk' is that, often, you're still expected to do business...while drunk. Like, this party we just had ended at 3:30. What do you expect me to do until 5? Work? No thank you!

Our company also has this annual Halloween Party which is straight up ridiculous. The whole place shuts down at 12 noon the Friday before All Hallows Eve and everyone decorates their department and dresses up and gets shit canned, like, in their offices and it's just surreal. My department does not participate in this tradition because my department is NO FUN. This year I was like, fuck it, it's Halloween, y'all, I'm gonna get dronnnk. But unfortunately, I forgot to bring my balls that day, and ended up coming back to my desk at like 4:30, after about 71 cocktails to do work, and drunk dialed one of my bosses. I have basically no recollection of what that conversation covered, I just remember trying so, so, SO hard to sound normal, and then just like, hanging up and going home. I did manage to take notes during the conversation, which look a little something like this:

Employee of the year, I'm sure.

One Awkward Christmas List

Bah, humbug. Despite the cold and the decorations and the non-stop Christmas Pandora stations, I'm having trouble getting myself in the holiday spirit. I'm hoping Sunday's premiere of "Christmas Cupid" on the ABC Family Channel, a modern remake of Dickens' "A Christmas Carol," starring the legendary Chad Michael Murray will kick start my joy. I fear I'm not alone in this. As we grow older and the stresses of daily life become more and more consuming, the magic of Christmas is harder and harder to grasp. So let us all come together here, young and old, white and black, Christians and Jews for Jesus, to reflect upon the true meaning of Christmas: Non-Stop Awkward Moments.

Like small-talking with long-lost family members you see but once a year. And caroling. And listening, really listening, to the lyrics for 'Baby It's Cold Outside.' Like opening an atrociously bad gift in front of the giver, and trying to hold your 'I really, really love it!' grin for just the right amount of time that it registers as genuine, without becoming insane. Like drunk, oversharing relatives. Or being the drunk, oversharing relative. Or the increased need to interact with mall salespeople, all wearing holiday vests. Or picking your boss in the office secret santa where, in front of the whole company she tears open her Starbucks gift card, expertly smiles the 'I really, really love it!' grin mentioned above, looks right at you and says "Thank you, Carol!" which is not your name, but the name of your boss's former assistant whom you'd replaced over 6 months prior. (I mean, no big deal, that was like 4 Christmases ago, I'm sure you're over it.) Like bumbling, shame faced, past the tirelessly cheerful Salvation Army Santas. You're a really good person, you are! Everyone trusts you used all your change doing laundry. No need to yell it out loud every time you walk past a ringer. Please stay calm.

Like getting Tampax as a stocking stuffer. Or running into old classmates while visiting home. Like throwing a temper tantrum on Christmas morning because your sister got the gift you wanted. Also you're 19 and it's a copy of "The Lovely Bones." Like lying to your priest, on the eve of Jesus's birth. "Yes I know you only see me on Christmas Eve, Father, but I assure you I attend weekly mass at a different parish. Oh, you've never heard of "St. JonHamm's Holy Name Thorn of God Bonanza? Yeahhhh, it's pretty new."

And, of course, Christmas commercials. I'll end this post with a link to my current fave. An instant classic, which reminds us all: no matter how long your Awkward Christmas List, there's always room for some incestuous sexual tension.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOQk_pWmisA]

One Awkward Date: Hey, Mr. Tambourine Man

Sorry for the late post tonight, gang. But I still have 1.5 hours left until EOD so resolution: still in tact. I had great intentions to post right after work, but then one thing led to another and I was out drinking beer, eating hot dogs and draining my checking account to $5.26. Whoops! Anyway, a quick story I've been meaning to share: due to my utter lack of game and my impending family Christmas party, where I'll surely be asked by each and every aunt & cousin if I'm seeing anyone and have to answer each and every time that nope, still single, nope no cats yet, yep I'll definitely consider the Himalayan Long Haired, I've also heard they're great at sensing loneliness and meowing appreciatively when they sense their owner is trying to make a pun, thanks for the suggestion, I've decided to re-dip my toes in the pool of online dating.

And I'm taking it seriously this time. For real. I updated my profile with normal photos (Ok, one photo in a penguin costume. And the Rose photo. But otherwise all normal), and relevant information and I'm being open minded. Really, really open minded, apparently. My first date, post 'taking it seriously' was last week and Holy Shit, you guys.

So, this guy seemed a little kooky but immediately offered to take me out for buffalo wings, which is pretty much the fastest way to my heart/pantalones so I agreed to a date. I (mis)read his profile information as off-beat, weird, class-clownish. I should have read them as totally fucking weird.

Touching just the highlights: he loves science fiction (fine) and doesn't own a TV (warning sign) and has really, really small hands (call me shallow, but small hands give me the willies.) He's developing a website that he calls 'Facebook meets Match.com' but instead of being anything at all like either Facebook or Match, the site provides subscribers with inspirational notecards (I think?) that give them hints on how to be more confident on the subway (??). So it's more like Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul meets NYC MTA meets a printer. Once, in high school, he rode a bus from Boston to Michigan to live on the streets, like a homeless person, just for fun. Sometimes, he carries a tambourine around town so he can have 'theme music.' (He didn't bring it on the date, unfortch.) He truly and deeply believes that there is a 65-year-old man in Cincinnati who is able to cure AIDS by having sex with infected people. Like, really believes this. (Don't ask me why we were talking about AIDS on a first date. It's already been established I have no game.) He made a vest out of cooler ice packs that he wears around during the summer so he doesn’t get hot.

“Like on your body?” I asked?

“No,” he responded (the duhhhhh was implied), “over a t-shirt. It’s too cold right next to your skin.”

“Riiight. Obviously. But doesn’t that get your t-shirt wet?”

“Yes (duhhhh still heavily implied) but it’s summer. It’s OK to have a wet t-shirt.”

“Sure. So, you just wear this to like, the office?”

“Yeah, under my suit. Or to the bars. I just ask the bartender to store it right next to the vodka so it stays frozen.”

Of course! Right next to the vodka! “Hiiiiii, barkeep! Mind slipping this bizarre ice-pack vest in next to the Stoli Raz? Wouldn’t want her to melt.”

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg (collar of the ice pack vest?), the details I could remember. I should have brought a tape recorder. Dude was straight up ODD.

So yep! Things are going grrrreat. Open minded! At least I’ll have a good story to share at the Christmas party, I suppose? Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go fit my Himalayan Long Haired for a teeny, cat-sized, freezer vest.