“So this is what menopause feels like.”

That’s a direct quote after my boss and I got off of our flight to Chicago this week. It had to be 90 degrees on that flight! And what’s worse, I was crammed up next to this albino mathematician from Milwaukee. The boy had his legs spread as far as they would go and his arm completely covering the arm rest. I’m tempted to put his name here so someday when he googles himself he learns that even though he was polite and started a nice conversation at the end of the flight, it doesn’t make up for infringing on my personal space for 2 hours. Then there’s that whole life philosophy: “above all else be kind.” So albino man, I will not google slap you today. Perhaps I’m feeling generous because we’re having a charity bake sale downstairs right now and I just inhaled a chocolate cupcake with peanut butter icing.

One final complaint – I have a conference call with my more loquacious client from 4-6 today so I can’t go to the Bizarre Bizarre tonight like I’d hoped and make a dent into Christmas shopping. Phooey.

The great debate

Ok, I can’t decide what to do about Christmas. I love my family, but I just saw them for what to me is the perfect amount of visiting time – 24 hours – after the wedding in San Antonio. I don’t want to spend the money for the flight, I don’t want to experience holiday traveling, I don’t want to sit around the house watching TV in Dallas. But I don’t want to be in Virginia with nothing to do.

I do, however, have awesome plans brewing for new year’s. The boyfriend is planning a couple’s weekend with his brother for me and the brother’s girlfriend. A friend recently told me it’s always good to have a man around in the winter. So true! He’s escorting me to two holiday parties. And he’s done with all of his finals on December 1st and then gets a month off. I can’t wait!

And now back from Cleveland

I went to Cleveland for the weekend to visit my friend Liz. She’s too pregnant to fly so she couldn’t go to the wedding the week before, so I decided to stop in for a visit.


We had a great girls’ weekend – we ate sushi, shopped, she taught me how to make dolma (middle eastern stuffed grape leaves) and tabouli. This is us with our hands in raw meat.


I wish my girls and I all lived in the same city! And I wish that city wasn’t in Texas, as is the likely conclusion with one in Dallas, two in Houston, one in San Antonio, and Liz soon to move to Austin. That leaves Jen in Vermont and me in Virginia.

Had loads of fun in Texas

The wedding was beautiful. The actual ceremony boasted two officiants (one a messianic jew), a gospel choir, bagpipes, a lady singing the Star Spangled Banner, a trumpet quartet, a string quartet, and a salt exchange. The reception included sushi and dancing with good friends. I was mostly on an island with the friends who knew “Aims.”

I looked pretty fabulous in my dress.


I got to meet Sarah’s boyfriend, Ben, for the first time. He is a smart, engaging, witty guy. Could perhaps be worthy of Sarah’s affection.



I also got to know Robin and Brian. Robin was better friends with Amy, Sarah and Carla in college (my now good friends) so it’s no surprise I like her, but the three of us (Robin, Brian and I) really were on the same humor wave-length. I was crying from laughing so hard most of the reception.


US Airways Sucks

Not too bad, but some. On my flights, each way, the PILOT took several minutes to explain the new US Air/Bank of America Visa card I could sign up for while flying and receive gobs of bonus miles.

That’s cheating. They have me hostage and they sell to me. It’s one thing if I choose to pick up the in-flight magazine or look at the cranium trivia intermixed with ads (which is pretty intrusive, but at least blended with some content). But unless you’re telling me we’re about to land, shut it pilot boy!

Sidenote: I must reveal my biases to Discover Card at the moment as they are paying most of my salary. But we wrap the hard sell with the cute little scissors!

US Airways Express

Originally uploaded by (^_~) [Markus Masataka] (~_^).

Grad school

I went to The University of Texas at Austin for both undergrad (English major) and grad (Advertising). I’m still on a listserve for the advertising program and a lot of emails have flown around for the past two days from students complaining that the classes are crowded, scheduled back-to-back, or not offered but once a year. This makes me sad. What happened to UT? The director of the program claimed lack of resources, but it wasn’t like that 8 years ago when I started the program. And I know the costs have gone up since my day. I maybe had a couple of classes with 30 people in them. I felt like I learned a lot – granted I had no idea how to operate in the business world having contemplated poetry and prose for three years prior. But what I feel helped me the most were the part-time jobs I worked in media planning, design, HR and finally brand planning that plinko-style showed me a path to work I find rewarding.

When I was in school, the lack of resources was only apparent in the extremely slow elevator in the communications building. I often thought if I made it big I would donate a high speed elevator to the school. Seems that it the last thing they need.

Don’t trust this blog yet

I’ve tried this a couple of times before, with my most successful stint writing a travel blog about my three weeks in Peru earlier this year. I’ve had a lot going on in my personal life that I wanted to keep private, and by private I just mean among anyone I talk to, so as not to divulge anything publicly that I shouldn’t for my inevitable divorce.

But without a blog, I’m in direct violation of a planner commandment. And I think it will be useful to discipline myself to write one. I’m titling this blog after one of my favorite Barbara Krueger images. I guess it’s possible that it reveals the cynical side of me, but I consider myself an optimist, even in the context of a job that asks me to use my brain to get people to buy stuff. A friend and I were discussing how you align your beliefs of doing good in the world with commerce and she had an interesting perspective that you really can’t hope to change the world except through commerce. But perhaps we can take breaks to learn foriegn languages from time to time, right?