my heart will go bowling/my body to science/but my soul never met/year 2000 compliance
If I had a “listening” link on my site, right now it would be Soltero – The Moment You Said Yes.
In other news, sometimes I get so excited about the next six months that I can hardly stand it.
Aaron Fucking Burr
Last night we changed up our nighttime viewing routine with a Ric Burns documentary about New York from the 1600s to the 1800s, and now I have a huge crush on Alexander Hamilton. He was so dashing and, you know, effectual. I’m going to go walk by his grave at Trinity Church again and maybe leave him a ten spot or something.
Also, just to further cement my dork factor, I spent the past twenty minutes at looking at the most beautiful periodic table of elements in the world, and I was really glad to see that my two favorite elements both look cool in person. (link via filmgoerjuan) I used to really want a T-shirt with my favorite element’s square on the front. I’m pretty sure I still do.
How I remain single is beyond me.
The B train
One of my roommates and I have established this nice little nighttime routine where we watch The Daily Show and Futurama, and then we watch the Electric Six video for “Gay Bar” before turning in for the night. Dirty Abe Lincoln, you’re my favorite bedtime story.
Anyway, last night was one of my favorite episodes of Futurama, the one where Fry’s brother steals his lucky 7-leaf clover, only this time I realized that Fry once lived in Brooklyn, and not that far from where I live now, since when they walk through the ruins of Old New York to his house, they pass a decimated Prospect Park sign. So, yeah: I’m that much closer to a fictional animated character on a cancelled show set in the fake future. Score one for me.
I’m pretty good at being sick – I lay low, drink gatorade, do crosswords, write lots of letters, maybe bake a cake. My roommate has been home sick with me, though, and she is not very good at being sick. Her first day home she woke up at 7 am, cleaned the entire apartment, changed out the bag in the vacuum, and practiced packing her suitcase for her upcoming 5-month trip to France. I had to stop her from taking apart the burners on the stove to soak them in the sink. Today she wanted to vacuum again, but we’re out of vacuum bags, and she would not be dissuaded from putting on her coat and hat and going out in the 9 inches of snow for more. This is fine with me, though, because she was standing in my doorway earlier talking to me, and I noticed her eyes darting around my room, twitching, and I shouted, “You’re looking for something else to clean, aren’t you? Get out!”
The combination of sick day plus snow day was getting to be too much even for me, so I tried to bundle up and go into the city to see a movie, but walking to the mailbox kind of wore me out, so I’m going to return to my strict regimen of Drinking Hot Things and Looking at Stuff for one more day.
My mom called me early in the day today, when I hadn’t taken my cough syrup or spoken to anyone yet, and evidently I sounded pretty horrible, because she called me back later that afternoon, and then had my dad call that night. Both of my parents were very concerned that I was out of chicken noodle soup, which I should never have admitted to them in the first place.
Mom: Ohhh, honey. You sound terrible.
Me: I’m really not that bad today; I just sound bad because I’m coughing a lot.
Mom: Well, just make yourself some chicken noodle soup.
Me: Actually, I ate the last can I had yesterday.
Mom: You don’t have any MORE?
Me: Uh, no.
Mom: Oh dear.
Mom: Hi, honey.
Me: Hi, Mom.
Mom: I was thinking, maybe one of your roommates could stop on their way home and get some more chicken noodle soup?
Me: Well, one of them is home sick too. It’s really not a big deal.
Mom: What about your landlord? Maybe if you called and asked? Maybe his wife was going to stop by the store already on her way home from work?
Me: Mom, I am not going to call my landlord and ask his wife to bring me soup. I’m fine.
Mom: I was just thinking, that’s all.
Dad: Hi, [PET NAME MY DAD CALLS ME DELETED]!
Me: Hi, Dad!
Dad: Mom says you’re sick!
Me: Yeah, I have been, but I think I’ll be better by tomorrow.
Dad: Mom says you’re out of soup?
Me: It’s okay, really.
Dad: Aren’t you all supposed to be getting a lot of snow?
Me: Yeah, it’s snowing now.
Dad: You’re going to be sick and snowed in with no chicken noodle soup?
Mom, in the background: Tell her to ask her landlord—
Me: I am not going to ask my landlord to go get me soup!
[Raising my voice causes a coughing fit.]
Dad: Doesn’t sound good, [DELETED PET NAME].
I don’t want to get you all worked up, except secretly I do
Highlights of the past few days:
- Scoring a ticket from the very nice Amy (via the very nice Catherine) for the Old 97’s show on Saturday night.
- Trying to decide whether I should wear my black bra or my hot pink bra before the show, just in case Rhett Miller was feeling all, you know, married schmarried that night or something.
- Rhett Miller walking onstage with his new Atreyu hairdo, thus melding my childhood crush with my adult crush in one explosive, knee-trembling moment, during which I involuntarily said “guh” and briefly touched the complete stranger next to me for support, and then silently praised myself for going with the hot pink.
- My new concert friends, Ian and Carrie and Chris and Chris’s girlfriend, but mostly Ian and Chris, who very kindly took me in and shielded me from the angry drunk guy behind me who got mad at ME because HE poured HIS beer down the back of MY legs, yelling, “Hey, let’s WATCH IT here, NEW YORK GIRL with your NEW YORK HAIR! I’m from AUGUSTA, GEORGIA and this coat cost me FOUR HUNDRED DOLLARS! It’s CASHMERE!” Like a reflex, I turned to see who was dousing/haranguing me, and I couldn’t help but respond, “Um, you’re NOT EVEN WEARING A COAT,” because he wasn't, but my pointing this out didn’t seem to help things. This gentleman then treated everyone within a ten foot radius to a theory he had about North/South race relations that was very ahead of its time. He was a delight, and I learned a lot from him, like he’s from Augusta, Georiga, and evidently, to him, “New York hair” means you’re a little sweaty and a month overdue for a trim. Which actually sounds about right, now that I really think about it.
- The Old 97’s playing “Barrier Reef” and then encoring about 500 times, playing “Valentine” and “Timebomb” and “Big Brown Eyes,” and at one point during “Valentine,” I swear to God that Murray winked at me.
- Drinks and trouble after the show with a friend who has evidently decided that I need to be set up on a blind date with a nice Jewish boy or three. Lucky for him, I’ve recently decided to let other people make my romantic decisions for me, so this should be fun.
- Waking up Sunday afternoon with a fever and something raging in my throat.
- Spending Sunday night in a NyQuil, Golden Globes, and Star Wars Trivial Pursuit haze.
- Greg interrupting the game and bravely venturing out sans coat to procure the makings of root beer floats.
- Greg coming back with the makings of root beer floats and then making the root beer floats for us.
- Jesus Christ, the root beer floats.
P.S. Do you know how much it kills me every time I have to write “Old 97’s” instead of “Old 97s”? Do you? I don’t think you do.
Tonight we watched The Golden Globes, and from what I could tell from my low-grade-fever, root-beer-float-addled brain, it was just one giant Michael Douglas circle jerk. I could really get behind the idea of lifetime achievement awards for actors if, at the end of the montages and speeches and good-natured ribbing, there was a mercy killing right there onstage, gangland-style. Sort of like what the eskimos do with their old people, only with more blood spattered on Sharon Stone.
Last night Ryan and I saw The Cooler, which was enjoyable despite the surprise appearance by William H. Macy’s nutsack. It showed up at the end of a sex scene, but you only realized what was about to happen seconds before the camera panned down that far, and you suddenly wanted to scream no no no NO WAIT! I was caught offguard, and Ryan made this fantastic sound like a shriek got stuck in his throat. Afterwards, as we put on our gloves and hats and headed back outside, he broke the silence with, “So, that was just William H. Macy’s nutsack, huh?” This made me laugh up until, like, now.
Updated list of totally embarrassing but guaranteed ways to make me laugh: jokes with punchlines that involve two thumbs and the words “this guy!”; the phrase “William H. Macy’s nutsack.”
Yesterday I had an interview. It was just an exploratory interview, meaning they didn’t have any openings at the moment, but they met with me anyway and might contact me if something opened up soon.
It went really well, and I walked out feeling sort of pumped, but then I immediately got a little bit bummed, because I realized, oh wait, you still have exactly nothing here. It was like having a really great first date and then the guy says, “Well, I’m moving to Europe, but I’ll call you when I get back or something.” Suddenly the little bit bummed turned into this snowballing rush of shit, what if I never get a job? What if no one ever loves me? What if I die alone and childless? And then this guy on the train next to me who was sketching people handed me this sketch he’d done of me, which was very nice of him, only in the sketch I was really ugly, with swollen cheeks and a weird old man chin and an even huger nose than usual.
This was just one thing too much, and then there was that feeling of oh god, you’re about to cry in public, DO NOT CRY IN PUBL —yes, you are now totally crying in public. So I tried to hold my book up and just act like I was very moved by it, but I realized that no one was going to buy that I was moved to tears over Kick Me by Paul Feig, so instead I pulled out my phone and sent the most pathetic, self-pitying text message to everyone I knew, and got off the train at the next stop.
I was immediately fine, like a freak two-minute thunderstorm had passed. But then all of my nice concerned friends started calling me, and I had to explain my myself and apologize for seeming like a drama queen. I walked around 34th Street, talking on my phone and sniffing and freezing, and decided I should probably put something in my stomach, so I walked inside the first McDonalds I saw and ordered a coke and fries and sat down to eat, but as I swung my hair back to remove my scarf, I whacked my head against some outjutting on the wall, and I saw bright lights and when I put my hand up, and it had actually started to BLEED, so I found myself under the fluorescent lights in the McDonalds bathroom, wearing my job interview clothes while blotting my BLEEDING HEAD with paper towels and looking at my tearstained face in the mirror, and suddenly my own life seemed really, really funny to me.
I met up with Ryan and Chris and drank my dinner, and then came home and took a long bath and drank my late-night snack as well. I was sitting on the couch in my towel, blissfully dazed and watching Newlyweds, when my roommate picked up the subway sketch sitting on the table and said, “Who’s this?” and I said, “Uh, me,” and she looked at the sketch and me back and forth several times me like I was crazy and said, “But it looks nothing like you!” and my day was officially fine.
If perhaps you were thinking, “man, I just can’t get enough of Sarah’s writing, and I sure do wish I knew what she thought were the ten best albums of 2003,” then I suggest you click here. However, if you were thinking, “I wish that shallow hack bitch would shut up about her empty depressing life,” I would invite you not to click there, and feel free to stop with the hate mail. I’m not making you read this everyday. Also, SO I HAD A ROUGH YEAR, man. My life isn’t really sad. I mean, no sadder than the life of someone who sends nasty misspelled emails daily to people they don’t know about those people’s personal, non-compulsory reading websites.
Will we have rainbows, day after day?
Several people have raised the crass but technically practical solution to my cold sleeping problem: find someone with whom to share the bed. I’ve been considering this, as well as declaring it open season on serious dating as a whole, so I made a list, and have decided to only settle down with people who fit one or more of the following descriptions:
- 1940s scientist guys (the earnest, frenzied, tall and good-intentioned kind always featured in MST3K movies)
- early space program-era astronauts
- a young Abe Lincoln
- people with access to their own personal robot army
- someone who desperately wants to massage my scalp daily
- brown-eyed boys
- Buddy Holly
I would also consider going steady with the following fictional characters, should they break free of the television screen and ask to court me: Joel
Hodgson Robinson, Dr. Peter Venkman, Nicky Holiday, Madmartigan, Big Pete, George McFly, Trip Fontaine.
Perhaps it’s detrimental of me to be this picky, given that all I have to offer a man is my nice-smelling hair, extremely soft hands, and the fact that I know every single word to “Bust A Move” without having to look at the karaoke screen even once, but also, there’s the fact that I know every single word to “Bust A Move” without having to look at the karaoke screen even once, and seriously, who else would you rather have raising your children or robot army?
Cooler than cool/ICE COLD
The past week has been really cold here, like single-digits-going-into-the-negatives-with-the-wind-chill cold. I’m from Oklahoma, where winter may be 30 one day and 72 the next, so while I’ve felt cold before, I’ve never really felt cold consistently, and as I’ve recently learned, I haven’t ever felt real cold. The other night I realized my hands were so cold they actually smelled like death. This is a strange new world to me.
I’m not complaining, though—one of the reasons I moved was to experience a proper winter, and make use of all the coats I owned, which seemed a bit silly when living in a state that shared a border with Texas. But learning to adapt to this new level of cold has taken some careful planning, which basically amounts to Staying Inside and then Attempting to Spend Winter in the Bathtub. Both of these plans work, but only to a degree, and I doubt I’ll be able sustain either of them in long stretches.
I don’t mind the cold at all when I’m out walking around, because I’m wearing my coat and hat and scarf and gloves, plus, you know, walking. It’s really the going to sleep part that’s getting me. I’ve never been one of those people who complains about being cold; instead, I’m almost always too warm. I’ve always worn just a T-shirt to bed, regardless of the season, and when I had a ceiling fan, I never turned it off. However, sleeping on the floor near a drafty window in New York in January when it’s -6 outside has meant some significant changes to my bedtime routine.
1) Walk home from the bar. Hopefully you drank enough to sustain the cold on the walk home. It’s hard being broke and achieving this first crucial step, so I also recommend staying at home and drinking wine and watching MST3K with people whose company you enjoy.
2) Before you even remove your coat, go immediately to the bathroom and run a scalding hot bubble bath. The bubbles aren’t really necessary, but they tend to cushion the severity of the burn.
3) Wait until the last possible minute to remove all of your clothing.
4) Step into the tub. Try not to wake up your roommates when you scream.
5) Once your brain has stopped registering the pain and lulled you into a state where you think you’re used to the water, it is now safe to read. It’s important to keep as much of your body submerged as possible, though, so only one hand is allowed. I’ve become remarkably proficient at turning the pages with my nose or chin.
6) You will eventually become uncomfortable, and begin to sweat a little. Stay in the bath for at least 10 minutes after this happens.
7) Warning: once you get out of the bath, you’ll be hot, and tempted not to put on your sleepwear right away. YOU MUST OVERRIDE THIS DECISION. Get out, dry off, apply copious amounts of body lotion, and then put on your pajamas. If you’re me, this now means knee socks, ski socks, fleece pants, T-shirt and sweatshirt. (You have to recognize how huge this is for me. I HATE sleeping in pants.)
8) I prefer to keep my knit gloves and hat next to my bed, since I like to put them on only after I’ve applied my lip balm; you may feel differently.
9) Get into bed immediately, while you’re still warm. No reading or writing or talking on the phone. Fall asleep as quickly as possible.
The only thing keeping this plan from being foolproof for me is my leaking inflatable bed, which wakes me up about every 2 hours when I have to push the button to reinflate. Sometimes this wakes me up enough to register the cold too, so the moral of this story is the same of every other story lately: I need to get a fucking job so I can afford to ship my real bed here.
Knee socks, milkshakes, profanity, and crackerjack engineering: my holidays
Last Sunday was grey and cold and rainy, and I spent a good portion of it on the couch doing crossword puzzles and listening to The Royal Tenenbaums soundtrack, pausing occasionally to space out while looking out my window at all the tops of rowhouses I could see through the rain, and sort of smiling to myself, because hey, rainy Sunday in New York.
At one point it registered with me that it was January 4th, which is my mother’s birthday, and then the music and my crazy detailed memory made me remember that exactly two January 4ths ago, I went to the opening night of The Royal Tenenbaums with someone I used to love. I remember this night especially because it’s the night I remember loving that person more than any other night we were together, due mostly to something he said. We took pictures of each other that night, in the snow on my balcony, and even now, when I look at the picture of me, I think, man, I look really, really happy. It’s undeniable how happy I look in the picture; it sort of jumps off the screen at you.
And so then I started thinking about that person, and our time together, and man, I wonder how he’s doing, and man, I wonder if he ever pauses and thinks about things like this too, and this feeling started to well up inside me, this feeling that makes me want to cast aside the past and grab people and be close with them again, but then I remembered the last time I spoke to this person, and how he’d told me about the very thorough job he’d very purposely done of making sure I didn’t remember him fondly, so instead I got off the couch and changed the CD and called my mom to wish her a happy birthday.
State of the union
I’m officially a few weeks away from dying penniless and alone, so if anyone was looking to swoop in and give me a book deal or become my mysterious benefactor, now would be a good time.
Other forms of support accepted: hard cider, grilled cheese sandwiches, hot dates, lightbulbs, toilet paper.
Meeting Cute 2
One of my 2003 resolutions was to flirt with a stranger on a train. Does it count if it actually happened on January 2, 2004?
After a long evening out drinking where Joshua and Lauren tried their hardest to set me up with a nice toothless man (who, to his credit, knew all four Ghostbusters’ full names), I totally met cute with a boy on the train ride home when his iPod got tangled on my bag strap. After a “you got chocolate on my peanut butter” exchange, we started talking and didn’t stop until moments before he almost missed his stop and had to run in order to stand clear of the closing doors. His name was Chris, his parents live in Missouri, and he looked sort of like if the kid from Escape to Witch Mountain had grown up to be a cute hipster. Judging from our 15 minute conversation and the excellent selection of music in his iPod, I have very little doubt that I will one day become Mrs. Sarah Chris, despite the fact that we both chickened out on the digit exchange, which warranted an earfull from Lauren on our walk home. It was crazy! Doors were closing! Stops were almost missed! It was almost worth it just to see the cute look of anguish on his face when he realized he was out of time!
Anyway, he’s only one stop down from mine, and I feel confident we’ll meet again. I mean, I know his name, and surely he’s left his Converse footprints all over the Atlantic Ave Q stop. He should be easy to find. I’ll just be like, “Tall guy, has an iPod and messenger bag?” and they’ll all be like, “Oh, you mean CHRIS.”