Tuesday, July 26, 2011

I received a new diagnosis.

I.E.D. That stands for intermittent explosive disorder. The Mayo Clinic's website has a very handy description of this disorder here.

I did not diagnose myself with this affliction. No, no, no. Read it. Seriously, go back up there and click that link. No one in their right mind would ever voluntarily admit that they have such a thing such as I.E.D. One of my usually not-so-kindly coworkers finds it hilarious on a daily basis to visit the Mayo Clinic's website and diagnose a few of us from the list of disorders there. My particular diagnosis is I.E.D.

Namely I received this wholly unprofessional non-medical opinion because of this portion of the description: "repeated episodes of aggressive, violent behavior in which you react grossly out of proportion to the situation."

Each time I'd get upset at another colleague for pawning off work onto me or for not doing his or her job properly, or even just the stupid hats he or she might don on his or her way into the office, he would chant at me "I.E.D. I.E.D." True, I did threaten to cut up her wedding dress. And that time she sent me an email at 4:52 p.m. on a Friday asking me to argue a contested motion, I did swear I would punch her.


Perhaps I have a form of passive aggressive I.E.D.? The Mayo Clinic should look into this. I will submit myself for this study for a small charge. Hey, just putting that out there. My condition, if treatable, could be a medical breakthrough.

I'm certain.

Monday, July 25, 2011

My first apartment to my first year at home.

My very first apartment in the city was one room. It had the tiniest kitchen one could imagine, a "galley kitchen," if you're into real estate lingo. The stove and refrigerator were mini versions of the usual appliances. All of the cupboards were metallic, and at that time, there were enough to hold my paltry collection of mismatched dishes and pots and pans. I had a rather large-sized microwave that had to go on a cart outside the kitchen because it just wouldn't fit inside the kitchen.

My parents had helped me move, and my mom spent the night the first night. She took me to Target to get essentials such as spatulas and a dish drying rack. She also was with me as I drove around my new neighborhood for AN HOUR AND A HALF LOOKING FOR PARKING when we got home that night. (As a side note, never trust apartment rental agencies' assurance that parking is available in a neighborhood. They will like through their teeth at you resulting in the sale of your beloved Dodge Neon. You know, if you were cool enough to drive one of those around town.)

My living area consisted of a love seat and matching chair, hand-me-downs from my mom, lovingly decorated with green slip covers. I had a full-sized bed and a table, also hand-me-downs. My nineteen-inch White Westinghouse television sat proudly on an entertainment stand that my parents had received free with the purchase of their last television. I placed all of my case books in a bookshelf that I had gotten when I was a cashier at Menard's. Truthfully, when I first moved into that apartment in late April 2003, really nothing in that apartment was my own.

In May, I left for Europe for over two months. For over two months post-moving in, that apartment sat empty, housing a random selection of odd furniture and belongings.

Yet I made it my own. I got back from Europe and found Oxford. I eventually got real matching dishes. My dad had helped me assemble a book shelf from Target. I got rid of the old table and bought one of those cool fold-down tables that was more conducive to studio living, thanks to Ikea. I bought a new bed (file that under top ten purchases of my lifetime.) I bought a nice comforter and flannel sheets for the winter. Eventually, I got my first job, and the large walk in closet started to contain more suits than jeans.

Four and  half years after moving into that tiny apartment and attempting to make it my home, I moved into a more northerly neighborhood. I got an apartment with my very own bedroom. I bought a new couch and a chair. I bought an entertainment center for that same beloved nineteen inch television. My cool fold-down table fit perfectly into my vintage kitchen. I killed my own cockroaches. (I know, that's disgusting, but it's true.)

I moved again. This time, I bought no more furniture. I had everything I needed by then. But I did paint a wall. I found my birds, and my dad helped me hang them. I hung photos by myself, using my level.

Nearly a year ago, I moved in with P.I.C. While there were some (rather heavily documented) adjustments, this place has become a home. We have hung artwork. Eventually, we will get some of our wedding photos framed and on the wall. Despite attempting to make a home for myself in this city for the past eight plus years, I feel I finally have one.

From tiny studios on the north side to a tiny bedroom on the west side, I have finally settled.

That's not to say we won't move again in a year and make our home elsewhere. Just not this year.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Lost my religion.

After an hour and a half of sitting through a Catholic wedding ceremony last weekend, it got me thinking about religion. Well, more specifically, the lack of religion in my life.

I started out as a Catholic. Baptism? Check. First Communion? Check. Confirmation. SCREEEEECH. Nope. At that point in my life, I became Lutheran. I went to a Lutheran Confirmation Camp. I was confirmed Lutheran. Then I went to a Catholic college. Then a Catholic university and law school. At some point, I decided that it was important to me to return to my Catholic roots. I thought I wanted the traditional Catholic wedding ceremony. I loved the tradition, the Ave Maria, especially.

However, a few years after law school, after a rather tumultuous relationship with an allegedly Catholic person (who behaved decidedly un-Christian-like, never mind his subscription to the tenets of Catholicism), I decided that being Catholic wasn't for me. If I had to tell myself that I could be Catholic despite not believing in so very many of its principles, it certainly wasn't for me.

When I got married, I chose a civil ceremony. My husband isn't religious either. We thought it would be silly to find a church in which to marry, given that neither of us was particularly religious. We don't go to church. Yet on that day, wed by a very dear and close friend, I felt connected and loved. A church wouldn't have added to that experience, I am certain.

Yet as I sat in that open church on Saturday and remembered all of the various traditions that go into a traditional mass, I wondered at exactly which part of my life did I lose my religion?

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Yet another invention.

I am SO PLEASED to tell you all that I have discovered a way to make my fortune. The way to put my kids through college. The way to buy my husband season tickets to Anfield every year (yes, I love you that much, honey). I present to you...


How does it work? Well, the gist is, you eat relatively healthfully all day, but you get TWO COOKIES each day. TWO. WHOLE. COOKIES. No more. You can eat them in the morning. You can eat them in the evening. You can split up the cookie experience. I don't care. But if you sign up for my TWO COOKIE DIET, you WILL lose weight. I (kinda) guarantee it.

I came up with this BRILLIANT idea last night. In fact, as I told P.I.C. all about it, I went into full on "sell it, baby" mode. I started throwing out an infomercial with some of my pleased customers (Laverne and Leroy). I started fielding questions from inquiring minds (P.I.C.) Of course, I would need to work out the kinks. Eating two Iced Sugar Cookies from Einstein Bagel (470 calories each, YIKES) would not fit into my plan. And two fig newtons probably wouldn't cut it. I would have to develop the perfectly-sized and prepared cookie. I'm on it, don't you worry. The more I sold this diet to P.I.C. (using Laverne's and Leroy's testimonials), the more I became convinced it would work.

Unless you don't like cookies. But what kind of person are YOU then?

************DISCLOSURE: I am not a health care professional. I have NO TRAINING in nutrition or dietary needs other than the common sense about basic nutrition. PLEASE BE ADVISED that I have not begun trials of my TWO COOKIE DIET. I do not advise going on the TWO COOKIE DIET without the advice of your doctor (an M.D., not a J.D.)************

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A new admirer???

I was standing on the street corner, waiting for the light to change, hearing a man leaned up against the building rant about something. No sooner had I turned my head to roll my eyes at my coworker when that man was standing right next to me.

Him: "I loooooove white women. Can I getta hug?"

Me: "NO. I don't hug strangers."

Him: "But I looooove white women and girrrrl, you look good."

Me: Um, thanks?

Him: "Come on, girl, gimme a hug? What's wrong with me?"

Me: "Don't take it personally, I just don't hug strangers."

I walked away from him as he shouted to my backside, "I LOOOOOOVE YOU. YOU LOOK GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD. I LOOOOOOVE YOUUUU. I loooooove white women."

I was with three coworkers who witnessed this happening. But yeah. I walked off thinking, "Did that really just happen?"

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The man.

I used to see a man quite often. Having worked within a one block area in the loop area of Chicago for over six years, I walk by the same Dunkin Donuts nearly every day. I would see this man there several times each week. He was always alone. Always sitting on the counter seat with his one glazed donut and a small coffee.

I'm not sure why he made me so sad, but my heart would ache for this man. He was probably in his early fifties and had the look of a man that had done blue collar-type work for much of his life. Thin, with fine gray hair cut in a shaggy, longer style layered to his shoulders, he looked like a sad man from another decade. He usually would be wearing a short-sleeved dress shirt that hung on his thin frame with skinny pants. I fancied him a smoker, yet never saw him outside taking a drag.

He had very sad eyes. Pale blue, no spark of life in them. I would glance at him, quietly eating his donut, sipping his coffee, no real expression of enjoyment on his face. I figured he had to get some kind of enjoyment out of his treat, out of his routine. His face never reflected happiness however.

I hadn't seen him in awhile, but did this morning on the train. The very sight of him still makes me sad.

I'm still not sure why.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Mini-girl vacation time!

Wait. That title is entirely misleading. I don't mean I'm going with miniature girls. No, no, no. The vacation part is mini.


Tonight, I'm leaving on a jet plane to visit two of my very best friends with another of my very best friends and guess what? We are meeting two other of our very best friends at the airport. I am so excited.

I'm not sure if it's that I'm rather ambivalent about my job lately, but I certainly know that I am in need of a few days of purely girlish entertainment. Not the kind creepy dudes go for. No. The kind where we get our nails done. We'll shop. Probably drink fancy cocktails. DEFINITELY drink champagne. Giggle.

Truthfully, we could do this in our lovely home city, Chicago. Well, not quite because one of the gals in our group is now a New Yawka. This weekend New York City (and its respective burroughs) is ours, sans distractions. No husbands. No pets (accept for our lovely host-pup, Tillis).

Just girls, champagne, cocktails, shopping, and manicures.

Catch you on the flip side.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


It's just one of those days. You know. That a girl goes through. When I'm angry insiiiiiiiide (channeling my inner Monica here, obviously.)

Sadly, I do, however, wanna take it out on you.

I have a story about one of my coworkers. It involves a teddy bear, role playing and some awkward engagement photographs. Every time I start to write about it, I get so angry at this coworker, I want to punch something. Why? I don't know.

Do you think she'd let me borrow the bear? I have a certain role it can fulfill today.