Thursday, June 19, 2008

My View.

Let me put this clearly: I hate "The View." The one pretty girl is an uptight showpony and the others are petty, miserly and crude (when they can manage an act) in an attempt to be "real" and "charmingly candid." Today at the gym, though, I saw that the guest was Michelle Obama. Not only was there no "Law & Order" on, but was I curious to hear what the potential future first lady had to say, so really, the timing was perfect.

Michelle Obama has been described as the next Jacqueline Kennedy. She has also been accused of being anti-American and racist. She's a role model. A mother of two. A lawyer. She's also the wife to potentially our first African-American President. So...clearly, this is woman who will have some interesting things to say.

Immediately I knew I liked her. Really. A lot. She sometimes wears designer, and she sometimes wears a simple dress from
White House/Black Market and "you put a little pin on it and you got something going on!" She's refreshingly honest- and I mean in the sincere, realistic way- not "The View" manufactured-to-look-casual way. She laughs about her mornings- that her husband doesn't understand how she needs more than 20 minutes to get out the door when she's got her hair and makeup to fix in the morning, PLUS 2 girls to preen. She quotes her own 10 year old daughter with pride and candor, who cleverly responded to a nosey reporter on being in the spotlight, "Those people aren't here to see me. I'm just a kid...I can't pass any laws!...They just think I'm cute."

She intelligently and kindly discusses diversity and racism, her feelings on family as well as her pride in the electorate process of our country. And what does this roundtable of "diverse" and supposedly intelligent women take her?


"I'm wearing pantyhose to show respect today, but...YOU're not wearing any pantyhose!"
Followed by an ear-bleedingly phony discussion on hose.

And they wonder why no one takes them seriously.

Mrs. Obama, I'm in your corner. If this is what it means to be elitist, thank you for not stooping to their level.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


Between this and Facebook, I am sensing a very promising future...

Check it out and send me your submissions:
Par Example:Kind of inspiring, isn't it?

Monday, June 16, 2008

Jumping the Gun.

Lately I see a lot of carts before horses around me. Usually those are the carts of good-hearted, well-intentioned men (so I like to think).
But why the onslaught of friends calling me to say that they're breaking up with someone before the relationship is even...well...A Relationship?!?

Real conversation:
he: I'm just not sure I want to start a long-distance thing.
me: Have you even gone out with her yet?
he: I just met her yesterday. But she lives out of state. I don't even know if I want to bother putting forth effort into that kind of distance.
me: (laughing) Well...maybe you should call her first to see if there's any reason to keep in touch at all.

Another real conversation:
she: I just got this email from (a guy I went out once with 3 months ago). I think he's breaking up with me.
me: Wait, who? You aren't dating anyone, though, are you?
she: Well...we went out three months ago and I emailed him to tell him I had a good time and it was nice talking to him and then I never heard from him again. And now I just got this email- three months later- where he says that he just didn't want to pursue things with me because he didn't have feelings for me like that, but he would still like to be friends.
me: (stunned silence.) Are you sure he wasn't just kidding?
It seems like lately there's a lot of breaking up with people we haven't even started dating yet. This worries me. Why are we eliminating people from our lives before we even have time to consider them as friends, let alone romantic possibilities? Considering that we only have time and patience for so much shallow conversation, why is it we're limiting ourselves from the only kind of connection that really matters- a genuine one. And even then, why do we rush to the conclusion that a genuine connection must result in a terminal relationship? Whatever happened to all those glorious, fun, enjoyable levels of relationships in-between? Can't we just enjoy being FRIENDS for a while? Especially in a world so lacking in Real, True Friendship and caring, I think there's something to be said for knowing when you have someone in your corner, wanting the best for you- even when that doesn't mean having them.

To all of you who may be jumping the gun on breaking up before you've gotten to know someone, I'm going to share my relationship ladder with you. I hope it will ease your pain and soothe your freaked-out hearts.
Best of luck.

The Relationship Ladder:
What it takes to get to know someone. And then date them. And THEN marry them.
1. Acknowledgement
2. Friendly Conversation
3. Occasional mixed-gatherings
4. Occasional one-on-one conversation
5. Occasional one-on-one quality time
6. Frequent one-on-one time
7. Expected/Assumed one-on-one time
(You may add "with steps 1-3," involving other people to this, too.)
8. One-on-one time with the goal of commitment
9. One-on-one time with the express intent of commitment
10. Exclusive, committed time
11. Engagement
12. Marriage.

If you ask me, that's a lot of steps and a lot to progress through. If at any point in time, you feel burdened, just ask yourself: Do I want to see this person again? If the answer is no- you can stop seeing them. If the answer is yes, you can move forward. It's a fairly simple process, really. If you're still contemplating breaking up with that person, ask yourself: Do I want to see them for the next 2 hours? If the answer is no, go ahead and stop seeing them. But unless the reason you don't want to see someone again is because you just plain don't want them in your life- don't WORRY about it.

Remember, "Cart-Before-the-Horse" friends, there are two sides of every coin to deal with. As much as you might worry they're getting too attached to you, there's a whole other party involved who just might feel like YOU are the one getting way too fond of them.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Costa Rica SOUNDS Like:

"You're WELCOME." -f.
"Oh...Those are just our bugs that hang out on the counter. You would've known that if you'd been here for the past 2 days. Don't worry, Broek, you'll catch on." -Rachel.
"Crumpleface!" -Rachel
"Pull my finger..." -everyone. A little too often, if you ask me...
"SNORE instead of SNORT!" -Hailey
"Look at my cankle." Caroline
"All of our legs look the same!" -The Koreans
"We're outnumbered!" -Rachel
"I don't really know those guys." -Dalen vouches for Julio and Claudio when we invite them home to cook plantaines
"O-$#!%." -everyone. Depending on who was driving. (sorry.)
"Bare your boobs proudly." -Rachel (of course.)
"I will cut you." -Caroline

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Costa Rica is:

"Pura Vida!"
baby monkeys fighting
the butterfly farm with no butterflies
old ladies that sit on benches marked, "do not sit on bench."
the grass really IS greener on the other side!
Dalen's car.
watermelon fruit juice
beans & rice are so very nice!
white sand private beach days
car games
waking up to swim
shaking down the mango tree
canopy rides!
living in swimsuits
Korean Legends
sunburns that last all week
Truth or Dare
Hotel Via Poletus- the Sunset Celebration with no sunset
crazy drivers
Broek eats Hailey's candy. All of it.
speed bumps and potholes
trip to Volcano National Park for wildlife. It rained. We saw nothing.
entering the butterfly farm through the exit...
swimming in the rain
high tide
Hailey learns to body surf
skinny dipping. LOTS of skinny dipping.
flashers. (mostly just Whools.)
Dalen kissing the resident frog
CARNIVAL! magic.
salted plantains con limon
Caroline conquers water
Sex Education.
Dalen's polygamist family- the Sistah-Wives!
"Take the picture! Delete it! ...My girlfriend can't see that." -D.
Costa Rican Muffin Top
Water from the well: An Experiment of Faith.
Cow balls in soup. Yum.
Beautiful children everywhere.
"I have no pants on!" -Whoolia
night calisthenics
spin the bottle
"It's everybody's birthday sometime!" -boys
crazy neighbour dogs
rock tile showers
"Got any schrapnal?" -Dalen
Hump-back cows. How did we not get ANY pictures of those?!?!
"Me and Julio, down by the schoolyard."

"Sexual. A lot." -Caroline
Rachel's lapdance
Caroline and her Korean crew.
cheese puffs- twisted!
SPF 50 is the only way to NOT get burned
flooding at the gates
meet our mini-ants. "hellooo!"
model shots
freckles from the canopy mudlines
CRISTAL. ALL. day. long.
The Arenal Dome- 5 times!
big, buff, floating Jesus. AMEN.
pretty church music
invitation to see horses that never were
rain at 3 o'clock on the daily
boobs. lots of boobs. lots of boob talk. lots of boob flashing.

Monday, June 2, 2008


May 17. 2008
"God said He would give His life so we could live more abundantly."

-The woman in the seat beside me. She is talking on her cell phone over even my iPod. But from God to Wal-Mart to foot surgery to weather to getting sick of her job, I feel like it's a conversation I would've had with her, if either of us put down our cell toys and iPods and actually acknowledged one another were there. Side by side in an airport.

May 18.2008
It hasn't even been 24 hours and already I am loving this vacation. Yes, the weather is lovely and perfect and everything is green and lush and we're eating mangos and starfruit from the trees down the street and it rains so gently and so sweetly that I feel like it's the weather trying to wrap us in a blanket of welcome home; but it's the people- my friends- on this trip that have made it spectacular. I find myself- the lover traveler- no wanting to leave for even a moment from the conversation, even well into the night. As Rachel said, "we just all have so much interesting stuff to say!" And it's delightful. It's a rush in a way I haven't experienced in a very long time. And while I've never been much for "girl talk" or the constant stream of conversation, with this roomful of women I feel safe, comfortable, and moreso, interested in what they have to say.

May 20. 2008
This morning I woke up in the dark and could not go back to sleep. I lay there under the fan, willing myself to sleep as the sounds of birds began. First, just one rhythmic voice, later joined by various types of twitter as the sun came up. It's 6:30am now and the stillness after last night's downpour is heavy and thick and smells of sweet pineapple. The rooster crows.

It's time to go for a run.