Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Minor Issue

Today is my Little's 10th birthday. Last night I stopped by her house with a very pink gift; she didn't open it then, so I don't know yet if it was a hit. I'm not used to buying gifts for 10-year-olds. It's kind of hard, especially if you're averse to indulging gender stereotypes.

I got her a bead kit, but now I'm second-guessing, given how cheap it was and her oral fixation. Oh god, those beads were made in China; they're probably coated in lead and she's probably sucking on one right now. I poisoned my Little. I'm the worst Big ever.

Monday, October 29, 2007

On Drink(!)

I have to stop going uptown with groups of people I don't know well. See, when I'm with my own friends and someone says, "Let's go to Drink," (though this hardly ever happens with my friends), I feel comfortable saying, "Okay, well, you guys have fun. No hard feelings, but this is the part where I go home." And my friends know that I really do mean that; I totally understand that sometimes people want to be grinded on by sweaty strangers, and want to wait in line for the privilege of standing on a rooftop patio, and want to shout introductions over a deafening Justin Timberlake song. I don't have that gene, though. In fact, I would rather gouge my eyes out with a rusty spoon than do any of those things. So I really don't mind taking my leave when the party heads to Drink.

But something about being with people who don't know me makes it harder to exit gracefully. If I'm with a coworker and her friends, for instance, like I was this weekend, I worry that people won't understand. They'll think I'm bitchy, or high maintenance, or that I'm lying about the no-hard-feelings business. So I end up tagging along and turning into a wet blanket as soon as I get inside. (Which also, rightfully, makes people think I'm bitchy, so it's really a lose-lose situation.) Anyway. Then someone spills a beer on me, or my foot gets gouged by an errant stiletto, or etc., and all my fears of going to Drink are realized. Then Emily realizes that I am not going to pull out of the funk, and takes me home. Then I feel bad for being Debbie Downer and making Emily cut her night short.

The moral of the story is this: Never never never go to Drink.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Call Me Tinsley

It's a big week, gang. I got my first byline. Normally I don't get bylines; they're sort of contrary to the point of ghostwriting. So while technically I've been published many times before, you wouldn't recognize me in the headshot of the chubby balding man. Now, however, the agribusiness world will know my name. Except that the publication misspelled it. Minor detail.

In social news, I've got four (4) very promising events on the calendar for the next two weeks. Tomorrow is the Frida Kahlo Walker After Hours, at which Emily and I will get lost in the parking garage, spend approximately 10 minutes craning our necks to actually see the paintings from the back of the crowd, and take the remainder of the evening to get our money's worth in Wolfgang Puck catering. These events have been the highlight of my membership at the Walker; I'll be forced to renew for the discounted tickets alone. Oh, and art appreciation... blar blar blar... "I find the work interesting, but derivative."

Saturday, I'll be attending a Halloween party at which I'll know one person (Emily again). Meeting new people on Halloween is actually pretty efficient; you can instantly gauge someone's intelligence, creativity, or knowledge of current events based on their costume, rather than wasting time in conversation before you realize you've just been introduced to a Neanderthal. Take the party I went to last year: Girl in the Playboy bunny costume- don't want to meet her. Guy dressed as Steve Irwin with stingray attached- now that's someone I'd like to get to know. For the record, I'll be going as a Robert Palmer band member. I struggled with this decision, as I have an intense hatred of Halloween Hoochies. I decided, though, that the costume is not overly hoochie-esque (I'm allowing some extra length in the skirt), and redeems itself anyway because anything related to the 80s is kosher in my book.

Next Friday, another Halloween party at which I'll know next to no one (same costume), and yet another one on Saturday. (Different costume, as apparently someone in this circle has already done the Robert Palmer thing. I'll be recycling Rosie the Riveter from '05 and '06. It's the antidote to hoochie-ism.)

AND, I just realized that the weekend after that is my boss's wedding, and after that it's practically Thanksgiving, then my mom's birthday, and then obviously it's Festivus, and I'ma be broke broke broke and busy busy busy for the next three to six months.

I'm tired. Maybe I should skip one of these parties.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Stasiu's = Twilight Zone?

I had never been to Stasiu's before last week, but my friend Nikki is prone to frequenting bars in spurts, so now, having been there twice, I am prepared to state that strange fripping encounters take place at Stasiu's. A list:

1. "My friend Mike's band is playing," Nikki said when she invited me the first time. I'd been there for about two minutes before I spotted the Spyhouse barista who'd been totally unapologetic about the lack of decaf the night before. "Hey," I said, "that's the Spyhouse guy who gave me attitude yesterday."

"Oh, that's Mike," she told me. Mike turns out to be very pleasant.

"I think I bought a cup of coffee from you yesterday," I told him when Nikki introduced us.

"Oh," he said. "Was I a jerk? Sorry."

2. "I'm from a small town in South Dakota," a new acquaintance shouted in my ear over the music. "Aberdeen." Trust me when I say the fact that I never knew him before is truly strange. Apparently he played football in the Heupel era. Not that anyone is still holding onto that.

3. I'm fairly certain I spotted a guy I had an awkward blind date with a year ago. I remember him saying that he hung out there. Guess he still does. This significantly limits the chances of my returning frequently, despite:

4. A GO-GO. I kid you not, Jane Wiedlin was there on Saturday night. I guess her band played (not the Go-Gos, duh), but I was stupidly in the other part of the bar, discussing Central football and ducking out of the view of Blind Date, so I was not even aware she was there until after she'd played. She hung out afterward though, canoodling with some much younger fellow. Girl's still got it.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Todd Knows All

Office conversation upon delivery of pink pink pink "Barbie Dream Bouquet" to coworker:

Dustin: Todd, did you know it wasn't okay to send girls carnations?
Todd: I don't even think it's okay to accept carnations if they're handed to you for free.

Monday, October 15, 2007

An Open Letter to Minneapolis Coffee Shops

Dear Coffee Shops,
Economic factors notwithstanding, running a coffee shop is not that complicated. Don't try to deny it. You've got your goods, you've got your customers, you sell the goods to the customers. The goods are not that varied. Coffee beans. Syrups. Dairy products. Etc. Yes? So what I have a hard time understanding is how the coffee shops that I frequent are so often OUT of the basic goods. Examples: Decaf. Cream. These are mind-numbingly basic necessities for any reputable coffee establishment, and yet I always manage to ask for them on the day that they're gone. Then I have the pleasure of being blandly informed by the hipper-than-thou barista that what I've asked for is unavailable. Then he or she wonders why I don't tip. It vexes me. The end.


So on to the real business of the evening. I'm at the Spyhouse, where I've come for no better reason than to leave my apartment, and to justify the fact that I took my laptop home from work today. For non-locals, the Spyhouse is our local tres-vintage coffee spot, always popping up on Best-Of lists and the Missed Connections. City Pages just cut to the chase this year and named it something to the effect of "Best Place for Men to Stare at Women Whom They Will Never Actually Approach." I didn't come here to be stared at, but it never hurts to be reminded, when in a down cycle, that one is not a troglodyte.

Do I need to do introductory stuff? Maybe that would be helpful, if I'm to eventually realize my dream of INTERNET STARDOM. (This will be difficult, assuming that I forgo posting of naked pictures. Nonetheless, I sally onward.) Okay, introductory stuff. If you already know me, you can take a long recess while the rest of the kids get up to speed.

Name: Kate
Age: 25
Marital Status: Deep, all-consuming aversion
Children: None, in light of the above, though my father seems to think this shouldn't hold me back.
Occupation: Disclosure here would violate Founding Rule #1.
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Various Other Locations: Aberdeen, SD (1986-2000); Boston, MA (2000-2004); Washington, D.C. (Summer 2005)
Notable Sidekicks: Emily, Katie and Brooke (coworkers); Brendan (long-distance bestie and confidant, Impossible Love of Life); Braden (not to be confused with Brendan, but also a long-distance chum, good at tough love); Jon (brother, currently turning over new leaf in tech school, all sunshine and puppies these days); Patrick (fellow book-club member, ex-fellow, current friend); others to be introduced as they pop in
Interests: Coffee, reading, journalism, half-hearted vegetarianism, environmentalism, writing
Currently: In need of restroom. Also, have hankering to work on Sunday crossword.
Result: Am quitting this entry.

Deirdre! You should be an actress!

To kick things off on a totally egotistical note, friends and family keep telling me I should blog. Now, I've done the blog thing before, and, when I wasn't getting threatened with a libel suit by my college professor (he couldn't handle the truth), found it a quite enjoyable outlet. And since I am definitely in need of an enjoyable outlet these days, I think I'll give it a whirl. However, my postings in the previous blog were typically limited to obsessive rehashing of my awkward dates, and obsessive worrying that I would never get a real job. In order to avoid repeating history (libel threat included), I need to establish some ground rules for myself. Friends and family, please hold me to these:

The Rules of the Blog
1. I will not discuss work. Much. The reasons for this are two-fold: 1) While getting fired might prove a liberating adventure in the end, it's not a life goal at this point, and 2) I already discuss work too much. In fact, if we talk in person, feel free to tell me to shut my yap when I start yammering about work. (Funny how things have changed since the days when all I wanted was any old job in the glamorous field of marketing.)

2. I will not write things about people that I would not tell them directly. This will prevent all manner of mean-spirited and neurotic postings. The aforementioned date-rehashing falls into this category as well, because I would not say to a date, "And then! When you opened my car door and your hand brushed my back! I got shivers!" Caveat: Celebrities do not count as people and I will write anything about them that I please. Let's start now: Mel Gibson is responsible for all the wars in this world. Oh, snap.

3. I will not write things that are profane or vulgar, despite how much I enjoy both qualities. This blog will be Grandma-friendly, Mom-friendly, and workplace-friendly. I don't promise that it will be interesting.

End of lunch hour. The rules may be added to as I deem necessary, but not today. It's back-to-work time. And that's all I'm going to say about it.