I’m a Spalding Gray in a Rick Dees world!*

1. The way to get your house in order and everything hung up on the walls real quick-like is to move in and then have people over three weeks later.  You’ll spend those three weeks getting everything to look nice, instead of spending them staring at all your art and saying, “Man, I really should hang that shit up someday.”

Everyone will say your place looks “super-cute” and “very cozy!”  You will say thanks, that you think it looks a little bit like a cartoon, but secretly you will be proud of your new clown apartment.  Then you will get silly drunk and nearly fall asleep on your friends, who will take one look at your sleepy face and decide it’s time to go.

It was a good party.

2. My parents moved to St. Louis several years ago, and they’ve done a good job of keeping in touch with their Houston friends, most of whom they met through church.  They all visit each other relatively frequently and stay up-to-date on what’s happening in everyone’s lives.

After I decided I wasn’t going to go to SXSW next year (though I’ll be in town to hang out in the evenings), I made a point of going to Chicago to visit Andrew and Cinnamon, two of my favorite people I see at SXSW.  I’ve been toying with the idea of visiting Seattle for the same reason, though I’m not sure yet if that’ll happen.

While I was in Chicago, my parents happened to be there as well.  They were on their way to Elmhurst to visit some old church friends of theirs, and they stopped by to have lunch with Andrew and Cinnamon and me.  As we were walking back from the Indian restaurant, Andrew and my dad were walking ahead of me, and my mom and Cinnamon were walking behind me, and that’s when it occurred to me that I treat my internet friends the same way my parents treat their church friends.  We don’t get to see each other too often, but we try to make a point to visit and keep up.

Is the internet my church?

3. Despite my best efforts, things are not looking too good for Pushing Daisies, my new favorite TV show of late.  It’s the Arrested Development thing all over again, and it makes me sad. With the failure of my favorite TV shows comes the realization that most people don’t like the stuff I like, and the stuff I like that sticks around tends to suck after awhile.  Gilmore Girls, the X-Files, Scrubs, the Office,** etc.

With that in mind, maybe it’s good that AD and Pushing Daisies didn’t last that long.  They never got the chance to suck.  Maybe it’s time to move to England and watch shows that aren’t meant to be around that long.

*from this episode of The Simpsons
**The Office‘s suckitude is still debatable at this point, but that dinner party episode was really, really awful.

i’ve lived with window units before

I’m in my old apartment right now, borrowing someone’s wifi while I clean everything and take the last of my stuff.  I don’t like being here.  My new apartment is gorgeous and clean and has all the stuff I like in it.  The kitchen is huge, and the bathroom is covered in green tile and has an old medicine cabinet with a slot for razor blades.  Last night I opened all the windows and did the dishes to the sound of wind chimes and chirping crickets.  Last night I also did laundry without having to wait for someone else to be done, and as I put the last load in I looked out the window at my assigned, covered parking space and sighed with happiness.

Tomorrow night I will walk to the grocery store.

If my landlady called tomorrow and asked me if I wanted to buy my new apartment, I’d…well, I’d probably say no, because we’re in THIS economy and I’m in THIS town and in THIS financial situation.  But I’d really WANT to buy it, which I guess is my point.

So screw you, old apartment.  Screw you for the following reasons:

1. You were built after 1980.

2. Despite your large parking lot, you never had a free space near my building unless I got home before 5 p.m.

3. You were too yellow.

4. You contained the following residents:

a) The guy who asked if I’d date his friend, who is the same guy who offered me cocaine.

b) The guy who asked me three times if I watched “the game.”  What game?

c) The upstairs neighbors who stomped around as if wearing cement shoes, who are the same neighbors who threw water onto my patio, who are the same neighbors who broke some glass right outside my front door and did not clean it up.

d) The guy who kept his German shepherd locked on his patio.

e) The adjacent neighbors who had a video camera installed outside their front door (or they did until I reported them), who are the same neighbors who 1. had a food fight right outside their front door or 2. projectile vomited outside their front door. I couldn’t tell which.

f) Anyone who walked past my patio while I was sitting outside and chose to stare at me and/or talk to me and/or get into a shoving match with each other while I was trying to read or write something.

g) Various shouting people.

5. You are in the same complex as the apartment I lived in with my ex.  Not that I feel negatively about it, but who wants that kind of reminder?  It’s time to move on.

6. Your trash was always full.

7. Your recycling was very far away, as far away as the mailboxes.

8. You are in a neighborhood that doesn’t contain many things I like to do.

9. Your TV-antenna reception left much to be desired.  I know, I’m a dinosaur, and this complaint will be obsolete in four months, but still!

10. Your sidewalks flooded every time it rained, which meant that after every rainstorm I had to consider what sort of shoes I could wear that would protect my feet from rainwater.

11. You only had three windows.  THREE!  (My new place has six.)

12. Your patio had a five-inch gap underneath the fence, so every time the landscapers came, they’d blow armfuls of leaves onto my patio.

Old apartment, I will miss your friendly landlord and your dishwasher and your central air and the size of your patio, but I will not miss anything else.  I’m going to load up the last of my stuff and go home to play with the friendly cat who hangs out near my assigned parking space, take a bath in my green bathtub, and drift off to a nice, quiet sleep.

(Maybe a lot of this makes me sound like one of those creepy watchful neighbors who looks out the window through binoculars and writes down the license-plate numbers of suspicious people, but I’m not! I swear!)

hallelujah, tuna salad

I go through these phases where I come up with a new phrase I think is funny, and I use it as much as I can until I get tired of it, and then the cycle begins anew once I come up with another phrase.

Lately, when someone talks about a food I don’t like, I say, “Oh, no, mall pretzels are the devil!” or “Sandwich pickles are of the devil!”  And the converse: “Dill pickles were made by God himself!” or “Chocolate doughnuts are from Jesus.” Despite the fact that I don’t believe in God or the devil or Jesus, I still say these things, and for the next few weeks at least I will find them hilarious.

When this particular new set of phrases is combined with my very, very picky eating habits, I end up using them a lot, so much so that my friend Josh demanded to see a list of foods that are the devil.  I’ve been trying to think of everything, but this list is in no way complete:

sweet hamburger buns
sandwich pickles
mall pretzels
mayonnaise (except in tuna salad or similar)
improperly sliced bar fruits that are not conducive to squeezing into a drink
sea urchin eggs
corn (except cornbread)
uncooked onions, especially on sandwiches
chicken fried steak
chili not cooked by my dad or the restaurant I used to work in (though this is technically moot because both of those chilis contain meat and as such I can’t eat either one anymore)
various fried items
mystery casseroles
Chinese food
bananas and all banana-flavored and banana-related things
coconut (except as a cocktail flavoring)
fake cheese ballpark nachos
pickle relish (except in tuna salad)
cake items that are not chocolate-based
doughnuts that are not chocolate-based
pickled ginger that comes with sushi
cooked bell peppers
white bread
canadian bacon as breakfast item or pizza topping
raw celery (except in tuna salad, and then it has to be chopped TINY)
buffalo wings not cooked by Jessica’s dad (though again, I can’t eat even those anymore)