Another Awkward Week [7.3.14]

Hey GUYS! Remember me? No? Didn’t think so. It’s been what, like, years? Decades? Oh, a week and a half? Well it feels like decades. The stress of trying to plan a wedding + find an apartment + move into said apartment + at least appear productive at work + pop zyrtec like it's candy because my sinuses are not on board this summer + finish the first 4 seasons of Game of Thrones (3 down!) (RIP so very many people) + watch ALL the soccer + take so many cold showers after watching ALL the soccer because HOT DIGGITY DAYUMN all these men in shorts + play with my new blender + eat, drink, sleep and, you know, stay alive has really caught up with me and, much as I love you all (and the attention you give me, letz be honest here), writing has fallen onto the back burner.

The way, way back burner.

Which bums me out but c’est le vie, my friends. C’est le motherflipping vie.

Are you curious what else has been going on in my life, besides the above? No? Whelp, we all know I’ll probably tell you anyway. Let us all join hands and take a look what was keeping it awkward this past decade week and a half.

This Travel Mug:

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My BFF Mo generously gifted us with a Ninja blender for my bridal shower, complete with two travel mugs and this cool attachment function that lets you make your smoothies right there IN YOUR MUG. It's miraculous. My old blender could barely chop. If I wanted to make a smoothie with frozen fruit, which I do, every single day, I would have to defrost the fruit in the microwave first and even then the blender would only get half of it, leaving me with warm smoothies with chunks of thawed, mushy fruit floating around. No bueno.

So to say this new toy is life changing is an understatement. My smoothie game has been revolutionized!

There is one downside which is sort of an upside in disguise, which is that the travel mugs twist on SO tight. And stay on SO tight. How tight? Neither I nor three of my colleagues could twist off the other day when I wanted to rinse it out. I tried to clean it with the lid still on by pouring in some warm water through the drink hole and swishing it around and pouring it back out again but that did NOT work and then all day I was left with this mess which, let's be honest, looks like a travel mug full of diarrhea.

Yum!

Did I ruin your appetite? I kind of ruined mine...

PS: Is it considered bad form to use your wedding shower presents before your wedding? If yes our form is bad to the bone, because we have been going nuts with all of our new kitchen gadgets. Whoops?

This Noodle:

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This past weekend was my bachelorette party - I demanded a whole weekend long party, I am such a 'zilla. My gals rented a lake house in the Poconos and it was just the best. THE BEST. THE BEST!!!!! I have never felt so loved and special and also just so relaxed and so very, very full of food. Essentially we partied like it was 1999 (aka 8th grade) but this time with booze. And an inflatable penis. Disney singalong? Check. Cotton Eye Joe? Check.  Getting weepy while talking about Dawson's Creek? Check. 5 gallon tub of cheese balls? Check aaaaannnnd check.

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We also swam in a pool, fended off a raccoon attack (mild exaggeration), played with sparklers, played "Pin the Hose on the Firefighter," invented some kind of group Wawa chant, played dozens of rounds of Heads Up, created a new sex move inspired by "Free Willy" (yes, this Free Willy) called the "Whale Tail," (we'll tell you all about when you're older), polished off copious amounts of Firefly vodka, Bud Lights and champagne (including one really fancypants bottle gifted by a friend who couldn't be there (hi Ash!) which I drank through a straw because I'm classy like dat) and each of us ate a full years worth of calories in one night in the form of chips, dips, buffalo wings, cheese, cheese balls, cupcakes, cookies, brownies, macaroni salad, potato salad, hot dogs roasted over an open flame while completely hammered at 3 AM (an ill advised idea if I've ever heard one) and late night Kraft macaroni and cheese.

When I went up to bed I took of my pants and found a mac-n-cheese noodle in my underpants.

HA! How did it even get there? I was wearing leggings! Maybe the stripper put it there?!?! With his teeth!

JK there was no stripper.

Suffice it to say, it was the best weekend of my whole life. But how the H-E-Double Macaroni Noodles did that thing get in my pants?

A mystery for the ages!

This Nectarine:

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Somehow we did not eat all of the food we brought that weekend, despite our very best efforts, so all of us brought snax and things home with us. I got dropped off on the Upper East Side and then took the subway back to Brooklyn carrying my suitcase, my ever-present tote bag, a basket of gifts and goodies from one of my girlfriends (Hi, Leah!!! I love you!!) and a big shopping bag full of leftover chips, one avocado and two nectarines. Quite the mix.

I managed to make it all the way to my stop without incident but then when trying to stand up and disembark my grocery bag tumbled over and started to spill all over the place. There was NO TIME to waste so I just grabbed what I could and ran off the train. I saw a nectarine rolling down the car and a woman yelled after me "ma'am! your groceries!"  But there was no turning back. This is not Saving Private Ryan.

RIP, that nectarine. I'll miss you.

I thought both nectarines were goners until Tuesday when I unpacked the chips for a little World Cup party at the office and found a smashed nectarine in the bottom of my bag, just rotting away.

So he may have survived the subway but his life was no better. Sorry, nectarines. I tried.

Sorry also, USMT. Tough loss out there. You did GREAT and I would still do filthy things (like the Whale Tail!) with each and every one of you, so thanks for inspiring our country and the libidos of millions of weird women. Or at least just this one. LOVE YOU TIM HOWARD.

This Traffic Cone:

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I was walking to work the other morning wearing this pretty maxi dress (last seen covered in coffee at Brian's sister's graduation) (from Old Navy, OBVZ). The dress is sort of faux-wrap style in that it doesn't tie, but the skirt is fully slit up the middle so when the wind blows it blows right on open, giving all of NYC a real show.

I came up with a trick of positioning my cross-body bag right in front of my goodies when I'm walking and wearing this so that it blows open but only up to a certain point and all the necessary stuff is still covered up.

I did not come up for a trick for when you're walking by a turned over traffic cone sitting on the sidewalk and the bottom of your long skirt gets caught on it and you get stuck and a fellow commuter has to help you untangle yourself because you're holding up morning rush-hour traffic.

So...that happened.

This Leftover Snack:

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Y'all know I love buffalo wings and blue cheese. So much, in fact, that sometimes I like to spill blue cheese dressing directly into my pocket.

You know, so I can save a little treat for later.

Couldn't be classier if I tried.

And, that, beautiful people, is what's been up! How have YOU been? Any big plans for the holiday weekend, Americans? The weather is supposed to be a butthead and rain all day in NY so I don't know what I'll get up to. Maybe write our wedding ceremony or get our wedding bands? You know, those minor yet crucial details that we should probbbably get on top of? Or we could clean and pack our apartment? Sell our old stuff? Stop spending so much money?!?!

Ohhh boy. Welcome back, stress. It was a nice 10 minutes not thinking about you. The next 6 weeks are going to be cray to the cray but I'm excited. Bring it on, life.

Happy weekend to you all and Happy Birthday, America!!! I love you. Thank you for being the home of the free and land of the brave and I just realized I mixed those two up but I ain't going back to fix it.

Baby you're a firework,

Liz Ho

Some Awkward, Unsolicited Advice on Coping with Anxiety

Apropos of not much, except that I was feeling anxious this week and figured other people might also go through this from time to time, here is some unsolicited, highly unscientific, borderline insane advice on coping with stress, anxiety and life's more disastrous circumstances. You're welcome in advance! I tend to be, let’s say, an extreme worry wart. Highly neurotic. Deeply anxious. This actually is something I should probably discuss with a therapist but I don’t have one and I don’t know where to find one and therapists cost money and money, or lack thereof, is one of the top causes of my anxiety and so forth. Plus, who needs a therapist when you can just blog about your problems, right?

Anyway, whatever is going on in my life I fear the worst: work problem? I’m about to be fired. Boyfriend hasn’t responded to a text in a few hours? He’s dead...or cheating on me, depending on what sort of a mood I’m in. Feeling ill? Only two possibilities: fatal cancer or I’m pregnant.

I then obsess about these worst case scenarios for hours upon end until I’m nearly sick with anxiety. It’s…not great. But I’ve found a really weird, totally foolproof way to calm myself down. I don’t take calming breaths or go for a walk or drink tea or anything a health magazine might suggest to calm stress. Instead I think about the situation I’m in and how it actually could be worse…and worse and worse and worse (can you say that more than once in a row? I’m doing it.) until I’ve come to the actual Worst Thing Possible in my head and then I realize: whatever I’m going through is not that big of a deal. And just like that, I’m calm as a kitty laying in a patch of sun.

Take, for example, this week. I was having some really strange stomach cramps, so instead of contributing them to PMS or my already well documented IBS (so many acronyms!), I decided that, of course, it had finally happened: I was pregnant. Despite being hyper vigilant about birth control and safe sex, I’m usually pregnant about every three months or so. Which is to say that I’ve never been pregnant (and don’t worry mom slash Brian slash world: I’m still not!) but because, like I said, I’m a neurotic maniac, every few months I freak out and read into every weird intrauterine twinge or slight breast tenderness as a sure sign that I’ve been knocked up and now I’ll have to decide what to do about that and how can I afford a baby and this really isn’t fair, I know so many sluts who don’t even USE protection and now I’m the one who’s pregnant and I’m so not ready but I don’t know how I feel about abortion personally at this stage in my life and I am getting pretty old and what if my boyfriend decides he’s not ready and leaves me and I end up like Fantine in Les Mis, a desperate single mother who has to sell her hair and her body and hide her kid in a crazy roadside inn.

Like I said, I’m nuts.

So I let myself freak out for a while and then I think to myself: Ok, self, this is NOT the worst. If (and god, please don’t let this happen, but IFFFFF) you found yourself unexpectedly embarassada, you would figure it out. What would actually be the worst, is if these cramps were fatal ovarian cancer. And you died.

But then I think, no, Liz, no. What would be worse if your mom got fatal ovarian cancer and she died and you had to cope with that…and at the same time your sister and brother also died of fatal cancers…and so did all of your friends and other loved ones and you were the only one left and had to bury everyone and live with the grief. But actually, horrific as that would be, you’d probably get through it.

And then I just escalate. I ride this wave of insane thinking until I can bring myself to imagine what the WORST possible scenario could be. For a while I was thinking Zombie Apocalypse but now zombies are really trendy and that show The Waking Dead is really popular so a zombie apocalypse actually looks sort of fun and exciting so I had to rule that out. I decided that the very worst possible scenario, for me anyway, is that I’m flying in a plane with all of my friends and all of my family and everyone that I love (Beyonce included) and there’s a huge explosion and the plane crashes on an island. Half of the people have already died in a firey inferno and their bodies are strewn about the island. Of those left alive, half are immediately pounced upon by gigantic alligators and the rest of us have to watch them be eaten alive. While we’re hiding from the alligators we are apprehended by a band of evil cannibals who tie us up and barbecue each of us one by one – and I’m the very last one. I’ve just had to watch everyone that I love die gruesome deaths right in front of me and now I’m being covered in teriyaki sauce and tossed on a fire pit. THAT, I would say, is the worst thing that could possibly happen to me. Anything else, yeah, I can take it.

And then I calm myself down, stop obsessing and face my problems head on. It works like a charm. Every single time. Some trained professionals might say that fixating on the negative will only make things worse, and other people might say I have a hyperactive imagination, which would be true, but I say do whatever makes you feel good. And cray-cray as it sounds, this works for me.

So, just a friendly word of advice from one basketcase to the whole world: whatever you’re dealing with in life, you will get through it! I know this. Unless you’re being held hostage by island cannibals watching half of your loved ones (the half that didn’t just die in the plane crash) be ripped apart by alligators with the same vigor that Man V. Food’s Adam Richman might apply to a plate of Nuclear Buffalo Wings well, you’re probably going to be okay. Whatever it is you’re facing, you can handle it.

Trust me. I’m an expert.