Thursday, December 31, 2009

Question of the Day #421

Here we are, on the cusp of not only a new year, but a new decade. That makes me think of decades past, firmly defined, like the 60s' "Make Love Not War," the 70s' Discomania, 80's big hair and 90's grunge.

And I wonder what the first decade of the 21st century will be remembered for. The housing crisis? The United States' first black president? Granting then revoking same sex marriage rights in California? The MySpace, Facebook, Twitter explosion? War, war and more war?

What do you think?


Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Question of the Day #420

I'm drooling over my new Foodsaver. It's waaay more high tech than my old one. It holds bags and can suck air out of canisters. I'm so excited about it that B and I are going to buy food to freeze right now!

What cool prezzies did you get over the holidays?


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Question of the Day #419

I'm getting ready to head back out to California. It took 30 hours to get here. It took B 20 hours to get home and since it snowed all night, I'm wondering how long my journey will take.

But like B said, it was the best Christmas ever. And if crazy delays and airport stays are the price we have to pay, it's all worth it.

How far did you travel for the holidays?


Monday, December 28, 2009

Question of the Day #418

Snow fell as I woke up this morning. My siblings and their little ones loaded into their cars and started their long, slick journeys home. My parents and I settled onto couches, snuggled under blankets and haven't moved since.

Only W has been ambitious enough to snowshoe. I didn't even take up the invitation to stroll out to the mailbox.

It's that kind of day.

How do you spend snowy days?


Sunday, December 27, 2009

Question of the Day #417

After gobbling down the delicious pumpkin pie B made, we had a leftover pie crust. So we decided to make a quiche with it. Except when we tried to pre-bake it, the pie crust slid into the pie plate and created a lumpy mess.

Ut oh.

What cooking experiment have you tried lately that fell flat?


Saturday, December 26, 2009

Question of the Day #416

The other night, we played a game called "Say Anything." You pick a question from a card and all the other players have to guess how you'd answer the question. I picked up the deck of cards and said, "These would be awesome for The Question of the Day!"

So here are a few borrowed questions (with my answers in parenthesis):

1. What would be the coolest thing to be able to predict? (When and to whom my novel will sell)

2. Which store is the most fun to shop in? (Whole Foods)

3. What can you say to your dog that you shouldn't say to your spouse? (Down boy!)

4. What's the greatest board game of all time? (Scrabble)

5. What shouldn't be done while driving? (Texting. Even though I'm totally guilty.)

How would you answer these questions?


Friday, December 25, 2009

Question of the Day #415

It's like this
I wake
and snuggle into the greatest Christmas gift ever
I whisper
The fog
Creates a lake in the mountains
Little islands of green
Hope rising out of the gray
Drums beat out a new story
Different from last year
No fear this time
Just warmth

How was your morning?


Thursday, December 24, 2009

Question of the Day #414

So, B, N and W just left the house to go to the dump. On the way out, they joked about how the dump is really a euphemism for where they bury all of my boyfriends' bodies. They giggled mischievously as B nervously buttoned his coat.

"Dad, can I shoot this one?" N said.

"Okay, I had the last three," W said.

They burst into laughter.

"Save me..." B mouthed as he closed the garage door behind him.

We use other, less evil euphemisms in this house. For example, we call the garbage disposal "Satan's Mouth."

What euphemisms do you and your family use?


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Question of the Day #413

Onions, garlic and the sweet tang of apple cider vinegar smothering pork wafts through my mom's house. I'm instantly transported to my grandmother's home.

The good china sparkles. Family snugs in around the table. Cousin Michael and I giggle through grace. The pork falls apart in my mouth.

Belly already full of tostones and suspiros, I'm distracted by the Charlie Brown tree my grandfather decorated. I wonder what's under it...

What meal sends you to holidays past?


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Question of the Day #412

Ohhh are we wallowing in food! Delicious spaghetti and meat sauce last night, mac and cheese tonight. Cookies, chips, sandwiches, bagels with mounds of cream cheese and holiday drinks. Who knew holiday drinks could be such treat? Apparently, everyone but me.

B is a big fan of Starbucks' egg nog latte, T's been sipping on some serious hot chocolate, Q's lovin' caffe mocha and I'm drinking chai lattes like crazy.

What's your favorite holiday drink?


Monday, December 21, 2009

Question of the Day #411

Are books always better than the movie?


Sunday, December 20, 2009

Question of the Day #410

If your flight was delayed four hours and your connection was canceled due to some historic snowstorm, and if you went all the way from JFK to Port Authority to board a bus that you purchased tickets for online and then was told upon arrival that the bus was canceled, therefore you headed back to JFK to wait 10 hours until the next plane will leave for your final destination, what would you do?

Apparently, B would sleep and I would write this question.


Saturday, December 19, 2009

Question of the Day #409

What's your favorite sport?

Mine's baseball. All is right during baseball season. Nothing like bright lights, a buzzing crowd, the crack of the bat and hot dogs.

BTW, can you believe I haven't asked this question yet? Talk about overlooking the obvious.


Friday, December 18, 2009

Question of the day #408

So my mother calls me this morning:

"I have 11 1/2 minutes so I thought I'd call you."

"Oh? How nice. What are you doing?"

"Making spinach balls."

"Spinach balls?"

"Yes. Then I have to make fudge. Don't you remember? I made fudge last year."

"I remember."

"You don't? You loved it!"

"Mommy, I said, 'I remember.' And yes, I loved it."

"And one of your presents ended up in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. But don't worry, it'll get here. I just got off the phone with them."

"Oh. Okay. Thank you."

"Okay, goodbye. I have to go now."

"What? That was 11 1/2 minutes?"

"Well, it's very hard to get the spinach balls into the bags and hold the phone at the same time."

"Mommy, you're a machine."

"Well, I have a lot to do. It takes work to make the perfect Christmas."

"I know and I can't wait. Good bye, Mommy. I love you."

"I love you too. Bye bye now."

Last week she emailed me a snow report - "Nine inches and counting." Then she wrote underneath, "Anything else you want?" She's like a Christmas Fairy or The All Time Greatest Elf. This woman is creating magic by the minute.

She's a total spaz but loving every minute of it.

How do the holidays make you feel? Excited? Stressed out? Blah?


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Question of the Day #407

Okay, back to presents. You see where my head is, don't you?

Simply V's answer to QOTD #404 got me thinking about how handmade gifts can be some of the best. In the past, she has given me gorgeous stationary featuring her photography. My friend, Riiick, wrote, performed and recorded a song for my birthday once. And I've made and packaged meatballs and written poems as gifts.

Have you given or recieved handmade gifts? If so, what were they and what was special about them?


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Question of the Day #406

One of the regulars played sax with his band at the pub last night. They wailed out a holiday rumpus with a trumpet, drums, keyboards, guitar and bass. I couldn't help but shake my hips as I ran food.

On the way home, The Pretenders' 2,000 Miles played on the radio, backed up by the Goo Goo Dolls' Better Days, which made me think that those songs may not have originally been designed to be holiday songs. They were probably just written in the moment, yet have somehow ended up as much Christmas songs as "Jingle Bells."

Which leads me to my all time holiday favorite. The one that makes me stop for a moment just to let my heart melt - Dan Fogelberg's Same Old Lang Syne. It kills me.

What holiday music do you love?


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Question of the Day #405

So I'm making a list of books for Santa. I'd like some recommendations. What good reads have you devoured lately?


Monday, December 14, 2009

Question of the Day #404

This question is brought to you by Lisa D:

What's the best gift you ever gave somebody else?

I hate to be cheesy, but I'm a little cheesy these days, so I might as well go full tilt - my heart. You?


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Question of the Day #403

While making gingerbread cookies, B asked, (Yes, he bakes! How cool is that?) "What's your favorite cookie?"

Mine are oatmeal raisin and chocolate chip. I just asked B and he said he thinks his faves are chocolate chip and oatmeal raisin with gingerbread rounding up third place. What about you?


Saturday, December 12, 2009

Question of the Day #402

Last night, when someone who shall remain nameless leaned in, close enough to rub her cheek against mine and through boozy breath said, "Doesn't this place look great?" that was nothing out of the ordinary.

That person is a serious Close Talker.

Then when I approached a table full of girls and asked, "Can I get you started with something to drink?" one of them looked up at me. Her lips moved but I couldn't hear a word.

"I can't hear you," I projected.

Again - moving lips, no words.

What is with the Soft Talkers and the Close Talkers? And what personality trait annoys you the most?


Friday, December 11, 2009

Question of the Day #401

I have chores to do. Right now, it's all about the laundry. Then I have to face my worst enemy - floors.

I HATE doing floors.

My old house was all hardwood and tile flooring. While I loved the way they looked and felt, keeping them clean was ridiculously hard. Sliding glass doors banked each side of the house on both floors and they didn't have any screens. And I was pretty close to the freeway. So, during the summer, I often had bare feet with black bottoms.

One of the benefits of being single. Who's gonna complain?

Now, in my nifty new place, I still have hardwood floors. But they're much easier to clean. They're far from freeway dust and they aren't nearly as vast as the old place.

But I still HATE doing floors.

Anyhoo, I'm going to hit that mess now, all the while wondering, what is your least favorite household chore?


Thursday, December 10, 2009

Question of the Day #400

Today I'm working on a sales training. It's a fun project and I'm into a good groove with it.

What are you workin' on today?


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Question of the Day #399

What's the worst holiday food you can think of?

I'm going with fruitcake.


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Question of the Day #398

B is a 3D modeler. From what I understand, (and I have a lot to learn) that means that he takes drawings and sculpts them into 3D characters or objects, then they're animated for film. Pretty cool, huh?

So tonight, there's a Christmas special airing on ABC at 8:00 PM, called Prep and Landing. B helped develop Wayne and Lanny, the two adorable lead elves, and he modeled them.

I'm very excited to watch the show. Clearly, I'm all crazy over the fact that he's so super talented. And I love that they've come up with a new holiday special.

Which brings us to a whole other subject. I don't watch a lot of movies. And my movie man thinks this is super weird. My stats are pathetically low when it comes to holiday movies. Sure, I've seen Rudolph and A Charlie Brown Christmas. But somehow, I skipped Miracle on 34th Street and White Christmas and a whole bunch of others.

What about you? Are you a Christmas movie fanatic? Which ones are your faves?


Monday, December 7, 2009

Question of the Day #397

What do you want for Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa or whatever holiday you may be celebrating?


Sunday, December 6, 2009

Question of the Day #396

NOTE: This post may be unsuitable for certain bloggers. Viewer discretion is advised.

As B and I wandered through the bookstore today, two little boys buzzed passed us. One said to the other, "Would you rather be eaten by a lion or would you rather eat poo?"

We, of course, burst out laughing.

"Now, that's a question of the day, "I said.

"Yeah, no," B said. "But you should ask what hilarious things your bloggers have heard kids say."

Is he a genius or what? So what hilarious things have you heard kids say?


Saturday, December 5, 2009

Question of the Day #395

B was saying that he likes concerts and wants to take me to some. That made me realize that I haven't been to a concert in hundred years. Since I've been pretty broke, concert tickets are up there with a trip to Vegas - not happening. In fact, the last time I made it to a show was only because my Jersey Boys kidnapped me and took me to Bon Jovi. And that was two years ago.

When was the last concert you went to? And who played?


Friday, December 4, 2009

Question of the Day #394

My house is a mess and I'm scrambling to clean it up. While scrubbing the bathtub, I wondered, who cleans your house?


Thursday, December 3, 2009

Question of the Day #393

On my ninth Christmas morning, I woke to find a two toned, blue, Omni 10 speed bike under the tree. It was the bomb.

I was so psyched, I rolled it outside and rode it up and down the snowy driveway. Then I paraded it past the neighbors' houses shivering all the way.

It was my favorite childhood Christmas present. What was yours?


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Question of the Day #392

I love your teacher stories! Thanks to everyone for commenting on QOTD #391.

In Kristen's response, she suggested we vent about our least favorite teachers today. I usually like to focus on the positive, but whatevs, let's let it all out.

In 6th grade, I had an amazon math teacher. I mean this woman was like 6'2'' and built like a linebacker. And she was not pretty. She used to call me up to the chalk board and yell at me. I was always nervous around numbers to begin with. (I still cringe when customers hand me two credit cards and ask me to split the bill.) And she would say, "What is wrong with you? You can't figure that out?"

I cried a couple times. That woman was made of mean. And she made a fear of math even scarier.

What teacher would you like to vent about?


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Question of the Day #391

Lisa D. sent me this email:

I was just asked "Who was your favorite teacher?" and I thought, "A ha! Great question!"

She is sooo right. Great question!

I have two. In high school, I had a tough English teacher, Mrs. Meys. She was serious about Beowolf and The Canterbury Tales and all sorts of stuff I had no interest in reading. At the time, I was way more curious about the latest party than the oldest literature.

But then she assigned us a poem. So for once, I actually did my homework and I wrote one. And although I'd probably be horrified if read that poem now, she gave me an "A." That got my attention. I just wasn't an "A" student. So I stopped sleeping and started listening in class. She encouraged me to write and read. And at the end of the year, she gave me an award for effort and achievement. I'd never earned a reward before.

After I published my first story in Seventeen, I went back to my high school and put a copy of the magazine in her mailbox along with a thank you note. She wrote me back, stating that she was retiring that year and the thank you was a wonderful send off and that she would follow my career.

When I got to college, I'd decided to major in writing, but I had NO idea how to write or what being a writer even meant. The first day of my first writing workshop, Andre Dubus III entered the classroom. He was passionate about the craft, excited to dig in and ridiculously attractive. He taught a small group of students about plot, introduced us to some great writers like Susan Minot, showed us how to structure a story, foreshadow, describe without being cliche and ultimately complete our very first short stories. And he made it fun and exciting.

That man made me want to be a writer.

The funny thing is, years later, during an interview, Andre talked about that first workshop and revealed that he had no idea what he was doing either. He had never taught a class before and didn't really have a plan. I think the honesty of it all inspired me.

Teachers are under paid and under appreciated. But they're the most important influences, outside of family, during our formative years. I know that if Mrs. Meys hadn't encouraged me to read and write and if Andre hadn't stirred up a writing storm in that workshop, I wouldn't be who I am today.

So let's give thanks to the most important people in our lives. Who was your favorite teacher?


Monday, November 30, 2009

Question of the Day #390

I'm spiraling up.

Yep. I can feel it.

I have a fabulous new place to live, I just got some good work and I'm in serious like.

Am I the only one? Is anybody else coming out of the dark? (If so, please share the good!)


Sunday, November 29, 2009

Question of the Day #389

This question is brought to you by the letter B:

Do you use a Mac or a PC? Why?


Saturday, November 28, 2009

Question of the Day #388

This morning, B and I went to a farmers' market and bought gorgeous local brussel sprouts, grapes, cherry tomatoes and beets. No pesticides were used in their farming and they were less expensive than supermarket prices.

I love farmers' markets, but I rarely go. Somehow making it to the market on the right day at the right time is always way harder than getting to my neighborhood grocery store. So I end up taking the easy route.

How accessible are farmers' markets to you? And do you take advantage of them?


Friday, November 27, 2009

Question of the Day #387

B is baking me a pie. A pie. I am one lucky girl. And to top it off, it's a pumpkin pie. And I LOVE pumpkin pie.

So what's your favorite kind of pie?


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Question of the Day #386

Some things I'm thankful for today (in no particular order):

1. The best Thanksgiving surprise ever
2. All the people who enjoyed Suzie Foods for their Thanksgiving dinner
3. H
4. Work
5. My wacky family
6. Future plans
7. The walk in cold sand on the dark beach
8. The pie being made in the kitchen
9. The Fabulous Four
10. My assistant, for today. Until we switch roles

What are you thankful for today?


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Question of the Day #385

My coupons are clipped. My list is complete. I'm heading to the supermarket to buy the ingredients for Suzie Foods Thanksgiving treats. I'm very thankful for all the customers who don't know how or want to cook.

Who cooks your Thanksgiving dinner?


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Question of the Day #384

After the sunset last night, we leaned back in deck chairs and stared up at the sky.

"I just saw a shooting star," said J.

"Make a wish," H said.

"Did I ever tell you how to wish?" J asked.

"Huh? What do you mean how to wish?" I asked.

J leaned in like she was ready to share a serious secret.

"When I was a little kid, my friends and I went to this magical little store, up a cobblestone alley, above a restaurant in Chatham. It was filled with angel figurines and crazy candles and the lady who ran the place gave us wishing stones and taught us how to wish," said J.

"Sounds very Eastwick," I said.

"Very," she nodded.

"So what's the proper wishing process?" H asked.

"She told us to take the wishing stones home and before we went to sleep, she instructed us to hold the stones and always wish in the present tense. Like, 'I wish I have a million dollars.'"

"Interesting. If I were to wish that, I'd probably say, "I wish I had a million dollars," I said.

"Exactly. That's past. Over. Done with," J said. "And then you have to end with 'for the greater good.'"

"'For the greater good?'" H repeated.

"Yes. For example, you can't just say, 'I wish I'm married,' because you could be married to an idiot. So you'd say, 'I wish I'm married for the greater good.'"

"Who knew wishing was so complicated," I said.

"But think about it. Imagine you wish for a million dollars, get it and then become an evil, greedy person. You have to add for the 'greater good.'"

"And that's it?" H asked.

"No, then we were told to put our wishing stones under our pillows and sleep on our wishes."

"That's pretty cool," I said.

"Yeah. I wish I have a wishing stone. For the greater good," H said.

What are you wishing for? Or are we not supposed to tell? ; )


Monday, November 23, 2009

Question of the Day #383

Sunday has always been my favorite day of the week.

Yesterday, we had Sunday Funday and enjoyed grilled steak, sausages and veggies and of course, the sunset. H says I'm obsessed with sunsets. I think she's right. When I lived in Hollywood, I'd grab a buddy and drive out to the beach for the sunset quite often. There's nothing like pink sky over Pacific blue.

So, clearly, I go crazy for sunsets. What part of nature do you go ga-ga for?


Sunday, November 22, 2009

Question of the Day #382

Okay, it's time for Excerpts From the Purse! As my shift melded into a meeting with "Team Chaosomeness," a few pitchers, a bit of blackmail and a whole lot of karaoke, H took notes on register feed and shoved them in my purse. Here's what I found this morning:

Verbal Gold
Verbal Explosives
Auditory Gold

(Clearly they were enjoying their synonyms for genius expressions.)

Joygasm. (I don't think I need to explain this one.)

Brings the thunder and the rain. (I think they were referring to P, Bartender/DJ.)

Hand fans. (Evan's wacky version of jazz hands.)

Don't steal someone else's unintellectual property. (Now that's a quote.)

Is that the thing you smoke out your neck? (I don't even want to know what that was about.)

Here's to denial. (I concur.)

I'm not hating. I'm celebrating. (The most solid of plans.)

Swimming in mine. Drowning in yours. (?????)

Kicks are important. (Evan and I were comparing his blue suede sneakers to my brown ones.)

Negative Nancy. Happy Hannah. (Who?)

Breathe through the nose. (Okay.)

Are we really drunk this early? Yeah, we are. (Sad, but true.)

We're not really ladies. (I did not say that.)

Everyone needs pizza. (I did say that.)

Any port in the storm. It's not El Nino. (Not yet, anyway.)

Socially acceptable slippers. (I'd like a pair.)

He said boomage. (Hmmm.)

Do you take notes on your life?


Saturday, November 21, 2009

Question of the Day #381

It's like this
Cheers ring out and hands rise around you
Regular hands
from old-school faces
that have surfaced only for this send-off
Playoffs, secrets, long winded diatribes and 4:00 AM dance parties flash by
Your Van Halen "Jump" off the pool table
Roque Versus Conners
And H's birthday requests for Zeoli Versus Roque
Thanks to you, I was "Curse free in 2003"
And every birthday after that
Started a jeans fund
A cancer fund
A growth of friends
Or is it family?
Together, we've jotted out questions, pondered the meaning of life
And fallen in love over late night darts
Sang good songs
bad songs
You know we've had our share
We've poured a sea of beer for an unending flow of Massholes
(A term so shiny with love)
We've gone hoarse from chanting, "Excuse me please"
Plates held high
Shorts worn short
All of it has undulated
changed with the lack of seasons
Customers have cracked the code
Gone from patrons to regulars
From regulars to staff
Flexed the inner circle
And now
The Scheduler
The Glue
Crumples behind me
As you pull me in for a hug
"All right, see you later."
Your regular exit phrase I've come to expect
And Girl Friday (Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday, and most other days) falls into you
You hug her
And back out fast
They cheer again
hands raised
and our eyes burn as you bound the stairs
towards the car
Towards the airport

"Can I still order food?" A tall woman I've never seen before asks
And like that,
I take a deep breath
swallow the softball in my throat and reply
"Sure. What would you like?"

I don't even want to write a question. This post is all about a statement. But it's a game of questions, so here goes.

Last night marked the end of an era. J is sellng the pub and our hearts are heavy. How have you experienced the end of an era and how did it change you?


Friday, November 20, 2009

Question of the Day #380

I'm getting my stitches out this morning. I didn't blog about getting them because it was far too gross, but I had a lump on my arm and the doctor cut it open, scooped goo out and then stitched it up.

I know, super gross.

Anyway, the stitches are nylon. Kinda like fishing wire and she stitched them in with something that kinda looked like a fishing hook. I'd never seen anything like it. And it was really cool to watch her stick that thing in my arm and not feel a thing. (Yay anesthetics!)

Have you ever had stitches? Why?


Thursday, November 19, 2009

Question of the Day #379

On Tuesday night, I went to the little market down the street to get this amazing Haagen Daz White Chocolate Raspberry Truffle ice cream. I am in lust with it.

Seriously. I crave it in the morning before cereal, after I eat chicken for lunch, lamb ribs for dinner and before I go to bed. I am obsessed with this ice cream.

That night, I sat with a pint of it, watching the news with my roommate.

"I may eat this whole thing," I mumured.

"You're incredible. Everything you eat is cream," he said, probably referring to the beef and sausage ravioli with spinach in cream sauce I'd shared with him the day before. "I just don't understand how you don't get fat."

I put another scoop in my mouth and savored the tang of raspberry and a chunk of dark chocolate.

"Me neither," I said.

A few minutes later, I dropped the empty container in the garbage. He looked up at me and shook his head.

"And don't think that's the last thing I'm going to eat tonight," I said.

"Oh believe me, I don't."

So I'm eating a lot. I guess it's my new way of dealing with uncertainty. It started in early October. But as long as I'm not gaining weight, is there a problem with it? Do I need to give up my Haagen Daz? (Say "no." Please?)


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Question of the Day #378

A friend of mine is planning a surprise for another friend who I'm pretty sure is not a big fan of surprises. Now, I don't know for sure. Maybe he'll like it. But he's one of those people who doesn't like to draw attention to himself.

My friend, B, doesn't like to draw attention to herself either. No loud "Happy Birthday" singing or cakes with candles in public. She's glad to celebrate her fabulousness - just quietly.

I, on the other hand, enjoy a good party. The planning, cooking and set-up is art to me. Which is maybe why no one has ever tried to surprise me. But I think I'd like a surprise. I've swooned over surprise flowers. I've instantaneously dashed off upon hearing suggestions for surprise getaways. I think a suprise party would be a good surprise.

How do you feel about surprises?


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Question of the day #377

Yesterday, I went to the supermarket to stock up on chicken because they were having a sale. Fifty percent off Foster Farms chicken. Now I'd love to be eating organic, but right now, that's just not possible, so Foster Farms is as low hormone, antibiotic-less chicken as I'm going to get.

So, I was all psyched and bought a small ton of bone in, skin on chicken breasts. When I got home, I popped them into separate food saver bags and began to vacuum seal them.

It sucked the air out, but then it's supposed to heat the plastic to make a seal. And it didn't. I was so bummed. My food saver is my all time favorite kitchen gadget. It makes it possible to buy a zillion chicken breasts on sale, seal 'em up and freeze them for a hungry day.

And it's dead.

So I'm mourning my food saver today, planning how I'm going to eat six chicken breasts in the next 72 hours and wondering, what kitchen gadget can you not do without?


Monday, November 16, 2009

Question of the Day #376

Have you always known what you're supposed to do with your life?


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Question of the Day #375

This month is flying. I can't believe it's almost Thanksgiving. It's like I was watching scary movies on Halloween yesterday and then BOOM! I'm taking orders for Thanksgiving Suzie Foods.

Is time passing quickly for you too?


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Question of the Day #374

When someone asks, "What's your favorite number?" do you actually have a favorite? Numbers and I have never been BFFs, so I don't have a favorite. But do you? Why?


Friday, November 13, 2009

Question of the Day #373

A few weeks ago, T, P, H and I had a Monday Funday on a gorgeous afternoon. As we sat on the deck enjoying the sunset (T took this picture that day), P mused about odd things - as usual.

"The pub is like the Island of Misfit Toys," he said.

"Nice," I said.

"The Island of Misfit Toys?" T looked confused.

"You know, from Rudolph," H explained.

"Huh?" T said.

"He's too young," I mumbled.

P sipped his beer, cleared his throat and began, "When we were little kids, the best Christmas movie was Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer."

"Definitely the best," I said.

"And in the movie, there was an Island of Misfit Toys. And that's where all the defective toys went, kinda like us, hanging out at the pub. There was a Jack in the Box that didn't pop out right. And a little elf who wanted to be a dentist."

"But somebody told him, 'A dentist? You can't be a dentist. You're an elf!''' I chimed in using my best animated voice.

"But he leaves the island to try an open his own dentist's office," P continued.

"Does he actually do it?" T asked.

"He does," said P.

"So perhaps there's hope for us yet," I said.

We looked sideways at each other and exploded into giggles.

What's your favorite Christmas movie?


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Question of the Day #372

We've mused about the Law of Attraction before. About envisioning something you want and actually manifesting it. It's clear that people can achieve positive results via positive thinking and hard work.

But what about the Law of Attraction that you don't realize you're attracting? Subconscious stuff. Like subconsciously sending out negative vibes so all you get back are negative events. Or consciously attempting to create relationships with seemingly healthy, happy people but then ending up in the same ol' situation.

Most of us are probably pretty self aware. We're smart enough to recognize our faults and try to break unhealthy patterns. But what if those patterns are unavoidable? What if we keep trying different strategies and consistently end up with the same results due to some crazy vibes we don't even know we're sending out?

Do you think that's even possible? What do you make of this crazy post?


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Question of the Day #371

When I was a kid, my mom used to take make our favorite meals on our birthdays. My brother always asked for Shrimp Scampi. In fact, he still begs her for it when we go to Vermont every Christmas.

I always requested beef stroganoff. Now, at the time, my mom worked 60 hour weeks and was yet to become the gourmet chef she is now due to retirement and lots of blizzards that keep her stuck inside (the kitchen). So that beef stroganoff was made with ground chuck and cream of mushroom soup and whole bunch of other canned, unhealthy ingredients. I'm not sure if I'd love it or hate if I were to try it now, but I can tell you, processed and disgusto as it was, I loved it then.

What was your favorite meal as a kid?


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Question of the Day #370

Big Tom entered the pub last night and H and I jumped up for big hugs. Noticing the bluesy song the guitarist played, he spun me out in a dance move then pulled me in.

"Where've you been tonight?" I asked.

"I went to see Men Who Stare at Goats." He twirled me around the bar. That man can make anyone look like she can dance.

"How was it?" H asked.

"Save yourself the cash and just watch the trailer a couple times." He dipped me. I almost fell over and decided to sit down.

"What was wrong with it?" H asked.

"Nothing. I just want to be entertained. There are so many great movies I'd rather see sequels to."

"Like what?" I asked.

"Like Howard the Duck." Tom sipped his beer.

"Huh?" I eyed Big Tom.

"Howard the Duck II. That would be a great movie. Or Short Circuit IIII."

I looked at H. She looked like she was following Big Tom. Had she seen the originals? And Short Circuit IIII? Should there be any film with a "IIII" after it?

"Or Earth Girls Are Easy," said Tom.

"That was hilarious. Remember how they shaved down the fur?" H giggled.

"These are your picks? These are the movies you want to see sequels to?" I asked.

"Yes!" Tom exclaimed and stared at me like I was a nutty person for asking.

Am I nutty? I put it out to you. What movies would you like to sequels to?


Monday, November 9, 2009

Question of the Day #369

When I flipped through the mail this morning, I spotted an envelope with my friend Patty's return address on it. It had been forwarded from my old address, which shows you how often we talk.

That's not a bad thing, just the truth.

Inside was an article she cut out of The New Yorker about teen fiction, along with a note, saying she thought I might find it interesting.

How cool is that? I probably haven't seen her since last winter, even though she lives in Burbank. We rarely email and never chat on the phone, yet after the reading the article, and thinking of me, she cut it out, put it in an envelope and mailed it to me.

Sure, we often think of things we should do, like calling someone when something reminds you of them, or sending thank you cards or a thinking of you card, but how often do we actually do it?

And when was the last time someone surprised you with a random kind gesture like that? How did it make you feel?


Sunday, November 8, 2009

Question of the Day #368

This question is brought to you by the letter B:

Do you believe in putting m&m's in your popcorn?

(I do not.)


Saturday, November 7, 2009

Question of the Day #367

On Saturday afternoons at the pub, Boston College fans usually come in to root for their hometeam. But today, Boston College is not playing.

So, P, my Saturday bartender buddy, and I decided to host a Saturday afternoon dance party. He's got mad jukebox skills and we've got a bar and a kitchen. So why not?

How are you going to shake things up today?


Friday, November 6, 2009

Question of the Day #366

After my shift last night, H and I settled in at our table and began discussing The Question of the Day. SJB plopped down next to me.

I turned to him and said, "I write a question every day and..."

"I know about your questions. I read 'em," SJB said, looking at me like I was a little cRaZy.

"Oh, okay. So do you have any interesting ones?" I asked.

Clearly, someone had injected genius in their barley and hops, because the two of them started firing off questions like they'd been dying to tell me about them for weeks.

So this morning, when I woke up, albeit a wee bit late, I pulled register feed a pub booth long out of my purse. It's scrawling with questions.

Yay for H and SJB!

Anyway, maybe I'm a sucker for nostalgia, because the one that got me last night was "What sounds remind you of your childhood?"

"My mom used to ring a cow bell to get my brother and me home for dinner. We'd be out playing tag or whatever in somebody else's yard. But when that bell rang, we knew we were supposed to get our butts home," I said.

"In our house in Ohio, I remember going to sleep at night and hearing a train whistle blow in the distance and crickets chirping outside my window," said H.

"When I hear train whistles, I flash back to my childhood. I could hear one roll by my house too," said SJB.

So, from my long list of questions to come, let's begin with our childhoods. What sounds remind you of your childhood?


Thursday, November 5, 2009

Question of the Day #365

It's been 365 days since we started playing questions. While perusing the archives, looking for ideas about what to write today, I realized I'm so thankful I started this blog. It's like a diary. Because of it, I can celebrate and remember everything I learned this year.

During the last year, we celebrated holidays together, like Thanksgiving and Fourth of July. I told stories about birthdays, camping and massages gone wrong.

You've shared things you like about yourselves, five things I didn't know about you and naturally, details on what you'd what you'd like to be done with your remains.

There was the birth of my fairy goddaughter, the kicking of cancer's ass, and lots of stories about friends helping friends.

I also learned that we love food, food and food.

It was not the best year for me. But thanks to you bloggers, there were some great debates, which inspired some serious perspective. And I think that's the key - the reason we come back here everyday. To learn a little about people from all over the world. People we may never actually meet, but we feel we know.

Thank you. I hope you've enjoyed playing questions as much as I have. So...wanna go another round?


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Question of the Day #364

Now that we've rounded the corner to November, my family is giddy with excitement over Christmas in Vermont. My parents live on a mountain, near this tiny town where like 24 people live. Seriously, you can't see a neighbor's house from their house.

And that is awesome! We go sledding, walking past the sugar shacks through the snowy woods and snowmobiling. My siblings and I battle on Scrabble boards, hunch over puzzles by the fire and last year, when it rained, we went bowling.

It's kind of like a winter paradise. And this December, it will be an exceptional wrap up to a not so great year.

In anticipation of the big trip, my brother, N, suggested we cut down on presents this year. Between four siblings and two spouses, buying six presents before we get to the parents or the little ones is a lot. And being all sorts of broke, I'm loving that idea.

H suggested we pull one name out of a virtual hat and buy that sibling/spouse a gift. I like that idea, but how do we do that? Am I a total dork? Because I'm having trouble seeing how we virtually pull names from a virtual hat if two of us are in Ottawa, one's in Massachusetts, two more are in Jersey and I'm way out west?

So I'd like to know, how do you and your loved ones handle gift giving during the holiday season? Do you have any suggestions for us?


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Question of the Day #363

Last night, while meeting with my critique group, we got into a discussion about being "popular" in high school.

From T's point of view, the popular girls were mean and put other people down in order to reign their queendom. S also remembered popular girls being mean and even recalled a day when she sat at a lunch table with some popular girls, and all at once, they got up and left.

G saw popular girls as the smart, pretty girls. And J, through her daughters' experiences, recognizes popularity as her daughters' athletic tomboyish girlfriends.

"They're confident, smart, and competitive," J said. "People are drawn to that."

Well before our conversation, G had asked her daughter, "What makes someone popular? Is it how much money they have? How attractive they are? How smart they are?"

Her daughter looked at her like she was nuts. "I don't know Mom. It's not like that. There really aren't any popular kids at my school."

G had laughed, fully knowing that her daughter and her friends were the coolest of cool. Even if they didn't see it.

And as an adult and a mom, T, who had never been popular growing up really wanted to crack the popular code. She still wanted to know, what was it that made the cool kids cool?

"It's completely subjective," I said. "My friends and I were popular in high school. But I was never mean to anyone. Sure, if you came at me, I'd fire back. But I'd never purposely put someone down. That had happened to me when I was younger. I wouldn't do that to someone else."

"Did you get good grades?" G asked.

"No," I giggled. "We were way too busy having fun to care about grades. But remember, it was a long time ago. We didn't have to care about school. You didn't have to be a genius and a peace prize winner to get into college."

"So what do you think made you popular?" T asked.

"Being nice. Friendly. Being like, 'hey come on! Let's go have fun...'" I mocked my spazzy high school voice.

It was after 11:00 PM. Someone yawned. We'd been discussing popularity for an hour. But on the way home, I continued to think about it and realized the subject was question worthy.

What did (or does) being "popular" mean at your high school? How did or didn't it affect you?


Monday, November 2, 2009

Question of the Day #362

It happens twice a year, so why can't I get a hang of Daylight Savings? Cell phones and computers automatically adjust, so that should make it easier, right?

Except that I forgot to set my alarm clock and woke up an hour earlier than I had to. And it's not just this time. One year, after a great visit with my mom, I dropped her off the airport, where she found that Daylight Savings had come and gone without us even noticting. And she missed her flight. Oops.

What do you think about Daylight Savings? (I think I'm getting back in bed now.)


Sunday, November 1, 2009

Question of the Day #361

We started with The Exorcism of Emily Rose. Interesting, since it's based on a true story. But not scary.

We then moved onto Scream. I jumped - no, more like lurched - once. The majority of the time, I giggled.

And then we capped off Halloween night, in the dark, with The Shining. Creepy? Yes. Scary? Not so much.

So let's recap. I saw Paranormal Activity, The Exorcism of Emily Rose, Scream and The Shining this week and didn't find any of them to be frightening.

Is there something wrong with me?


Saturday, October 31, 2009

Question of the Day #360

After I work today, I'm going to a friend's house to hand out candy to ghosts and goblins and then watch scary movies in the dark.

How will you celebrate Halloween?


Friday, October 30, 2009

Question of the Day #359

I'm going to my friends' annual Halloween Extravaganza tonight. It's a good time. Lots of friends, food worth fighting for (a brawl is already brewing over K's Buffalo Chicken Dip) and a beer fridge containing liquid treats from around the world.

H and I decided to be The Devil and The Angel. I'm not even going to tell you who is who.

Do you dress up for Halloween? If so, what will you dress up as?


Thursday, October 29, 2009

Question of the Day #358

So last night, I watched Paranormal Activity with a couple friends. They were all freaked out, worried about being alone at home afterwards. One of them even said, "I may have to stop watching the movie if it gets too scary."

I was like, "Puhlease, ladies. What could be that scary?"

And it wasn't. Sure, I jumped a couple times. Who doesn't jump when a door slams? But overall, it was just okay. Not chill me to the bone, I'm too scared to walk to my car alone frightening.

Tis the season. So I must ask, what movie has chilled you to the bone and made you too scared to be alone?


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Question of the Day #357

Would you rather be rich or famous?

I'd rather be rich. Fame looks way too invasive to me.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Question of the Day #356

Yesterday, it was 85 degrees and sunshiney. The ocean sparkled true blue and the sunset made the craziest streaks in the sky. A number 11 of orangey clouds.

The warmth inspired Monday Funday. That's what happens when your weekend starts on Sunday night. Monday becomes Saturday.

So, H, P, T and I got together to celebrate the heat, the sun and the water. And I, as always, took notes. I constantly write down quotes and questions. Anything I hope will sound equally profound the next morning.

And my scribbles show that yesterday, at one point, T said, "I'd rather be hated than ignored."

Now I'm not sure which I'd rather be. But I do know I don't like being ignored. I'm not a big fan of being hated either, but I can't deny that I may have given some people reason at one point or another.

What about you? Would you rather be hated or ignored?


Monday, October 26, 2009

Question of the Day #355

Last night at Jenny's birthday karaoke party, Whiskey Steve got up and sang "The Monster Mash," which sent me into giggle fits. His ghoulish voice was so hilarious that I woke up laughing about it.

I'm not a big Halloween fan. Call me a party pooper. Whatevs. But the funny, goofy, Monster Mash side of Halloween is way more entertaining to me than the scary, goree stuff. I mean, at least it's funny.

Do you lean more towards the goofy Munster side or the scary monster side of Halloween?


Sunday, October 25, 2009

Question of the Day #354

There's another Team Stacie event in Rhode Island today. Tons of people are gathering to tailgate, enter raffles and participate in auctions as they watch the Patriots play. I'm very excited to hear all the details.

Incorporating the team Stacie used to cheer for in an event is an awesome idea. We've gotten some inquires from people wondering how they can support Team Stacie. Do you have any creative ideas about how to fund raise?


Saturday, October 24, 2009

Question of the Day #353

Last night, at the pub, I felt hot all over. My knees were burning. My throat was puffy and my head throbbed. S shook up a juice with everything from garlic to wheat grass in it, instructed me to drink that, take Tylenol and gargle with salt water.

I did.

Then H brought me Vitamin C and I ate a plate of broccoli (more Vitamin C). Now I'm wondering if I should have ditched my "I never get sick" mentality and gotten a flu shot.

I've never had a flu shot. How do you feel about flu shots and the all hubbub around them?


Friday, October 23, 2009

Question of the Day #352

I just heard Hall and Oates' Private Eyes. Now, don't get me wrong. I love Hall and Oates. Rich Girl and She's Gone are two of my all time faves.

But when you listen to the lyrics of Private Eyes, things go straight to stalker city. "Private eyes are watching you, they see your every move..."

Can you say creepy?

Just thinking about the creep factor unleashed a rush of songs that give me the heebie jeebies. And why I'm begging for more heebie geebies is beyond me, but I have to ask, what songs hit you on the disturbing side?


Thursday, October 22, 2009

Question of the Day #351

Have you ever been invoved in an extreme sport? If so, what was it? If not, would you like to try an extreme sport?

I used to think I'd like to skydive, but the older I get, the less extremes I want in my life.


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Question of the Day #350

If you could be an Olympic champion at a sport, what sport would you choose?

I am not very sporty. At all. So if I were to choose a sport, I'd chose something graceful, like skating. I'd like to be graceful. (Not to mention incredibly strong, fit, flexible, limber and all the other awesome characteristics skaters embody.)


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Question of the Day #349

I'm finally connected! Hallelujah! Funny how something so small can suddenly become a major triumph considering all the frustration connected to it.

What little thing turned big battle have you conquered lately?


Monday, October 19, 2009

Question of the Day #348

The modem and equipment for the DSL came today. I worked on it for two hours and couldn't connect. I finally bailed and sought Internet service elsewhere.

And I'm annoyed. Tech stuff makes me feel like a dinosaur. Blackberries make me nervous. They're like a whole other language. A techy world I can't begin to understand.

What makes you feel like a dinosaur?


Sunday, October 18, 2009

Question of the Day #347

Today I served beer to crazed football fans. My east coast friends consider Sunday family day. I normally spend Sunday hanging out with friends.

What does Sunday mean to you?


Saturday, October 17, 2009

Question of the Day #346

I am using a wireless card to connect to the Internet. It disconnects every hour or so. Not exactly easy to work with. Plus it's ridiculously expensive compared to the speedy cable I used to use at my last residence. Cable is not an option in my new locale, so after doing some research, I'm switching to DSL. Hopefully it will zoom me around the blogosphere uninterrupted.

How do you connect?


Friday, October 16, 2009

Question of the Day #345

Question of the Day regular, Greg C., wrote a great post yesterday. Its about what he's thankful for in terms of life changes. I think he did a splendid job of turning negatives into positives. I especially connected with his point about being thankful for monetary setbacks and realizing that sometimes less is more.

Check out the post. What negatives have you or someone you know turned into positives lately?


Thursday, October 15, 2009

Question of the Day #344

I just finished applying for a job and it took me like 45 minutes to write a three paragraph cover letter.

And I'm a writer.

It's so hard to explain why I think I'm right for a job without sounding like a moron.

What's the hardest part of job hunting for you?


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Question of the Day #343

It's rainy here in LA. The first rain of the season. The first rain in months. The pitter patter on the roof and the gray daylight is awesome.

I'm in the mood for comfort food. Usually, when it rains, I braise meats and make stews and soups, but since I'm making all those Suzie Foods, I end up not wanting to eat it. Instead, today's comfort food is sausage ravioli with spinach and garlic in a cream sauce.

And for dessert, I'll have a nap.

What are some of your favorite comfort foods?


Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Question of the Day #342

I just realized I have a middle seat. Everybody hates a middle seat, I know. I'm just hoping I won't get jabbed and smooshed for the next six hours.

I'm a big fan of window seats. I lean my head against the wall and knock out during most flights. But unless I plan to snooze on a stranger, that probably isn't going to happen today.

What's your seat preference when flying and why?


Monday, October 12, 2009

Question of the Day #341

I'm staying in a very funny hotel. The privacy door hanger reads, "BRAINSTORM: It's really coming down in here. You might want to wait until it clears up."

And the little pad on the desk reads, "Leave a trail of genius."

I like that one. It could be a tagline for something. I read it and thought how would I complete that sentence. Maybe not "leave a trail of genius." Something more like "leave a trail of stories."

How would you complete the sentence, "Leave a trail of _____________"?


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Question of the Day #340

I used to have a friend who wouldn't talk to anyone after the Yankees lost a game. I also dated a guy who seemed to go into a trancelike depression when the Red Sox were defeated.

That dude's probably a zombie today.

I'm sad about the Sox. It's a bummer when my team loses a big game. But I don't go catatonic.

How do you react when your sports team doesn't win?


Saturday, October 10, 2009

Question of the Day #339

I witnessed my brother's football team obliterate their opponent today. 43-17. It was awesome to watch him make the calls, encourage the kids and rock the field.

It was strangely nostalgic. Strangely, because I never attended football games when I was in high school. My girls and I were too busy partying to bother with Friday night lights or Saturday afternoon bleachers.

But I watched the cheerleaders with fascination, bumped to the marching band's tunes and jumped up and down and screamed like a batty chick when number 23 ran a 52 yard touch down.

I was a pro high school football fan. And it made me wonder if you bloggers went to football games in high school? Or was it not your thing either?


Friday, October 9, 2009

Question of the Day #338

Tucked into my computer bag is a script written by my friend Rob and his writing partner and a YA historical novel in verse written by my friend Claudia, which I meant to read over the summer.

If there's one great thing about traveling from coast to coast, it's five straight hours where I can read. No phone calls, no texts, no emails, and no work to get to. Just hours of pure reading time.

What do you like about traveling?


Thursday, October 8, 2009

Question of the Day #337

I'm heading to Jersey in the morning to become a fairy godmother. Okay, a normal person would say she's becoming a godmother, but whatever. Normal is overrated.

I'm very excited to see family and friends, but most of all honored to be chosen to guide this little one during her life journey.

What does being a godparent mean to you? And are you one? Or how do you feel about yours?


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Question of the Day #336

I don't mean to be lame but I don't have an answer for this question since I'm not craving anything after eating every minute I've been awake during the last 48 hours.

If you could teleport yourself to any restaurant in the world right now and not have to worry about paying for it, where would you go?


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Question of the Day #335

I'm meeting with my critique group tonight and I'm totally psyched. J has been working on this twisted mystery for a while now and today I get to read the entire manuscript. I'm dying to know how it ends.

What story, whether it's book, film or TV, are you totally sucked into?


Monday, October 5, 2009

Question of the Day #334

All righty then. Since we're into kiddie foods, what was your favorite kid snack food?

I loved fruit roll ups and Butterscotch Krimpets. My mother never kept either of those foods in the house and I thank her for that. If we did have snack foods, which was rare, we usually noshed on peanuts or sometimes potato chips. I still love them.

What about you?


Sunday, October 4, 2009

Question of the Day #333

We're all exhausted. So I just threw it out to the Team Stacie members watching the Patriots in the living room, "I need a question."

H said, "What was your favorite cereal as a child?"

Stacie yelled, "Fruity Pebbles! And what about Boo Berry? And Count Chocula?"

"Lucky Charms!" Angel yelled.

"Fruit Loops!" Said H.

"No, no, the question should be 'what cereal makes the milk taste the best after the cereal is gone?'" Stacie yelled.

"Coco Krispies!" Said Alli.

"Apple Jacks!" Said H.

Now, there is a heated debate in the living room. Over kiddie cereal. Seriously.

And guys wonder what women talk about.

Alrighty then...what was your favorite cereal as a kid?


P.S. - Angel just said, "Oh my god! we should have a cereal party..." No lie.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Question of the Day #332

The Team Stacie benefit was awesome. While I handed out t-shirts at the door, flashes went crazy through the window behind me. I asked what was going on and the doorman responded, "Megan Fox is pouring drinks behind the bar."

I've never seen so many camera phones raised in the air in my life.

Then Johnny Rzeznik and Mike Malinin of the Goo Goo Dolls passed around an empty pitcher. The crowd shoved $1,405 into it in exchange for "Slide" live.

The crowd went nuts. They sang every word.

It so much more than I ever expected. I don't even have a question. I'm kind of stunned. Okay, maybe, what do you think of so many donating their time, energy and belongings to one special girl?


Friday, October 2, 2009

Question of the Day #331

Team Stacie is churning like a machine. Volunteers, staff, and awesome donators are banging out details every second. It's all happening.

So my mom just called and said, "Don't forget to post a question." Nobody knows me like my mom. If she hadn't reminded me, I may have missed my first QOTD ever.

Thank you Mommy.

Who knows you better than anyone else?


Thursday, October 1, 2009

Question of the Day #330

I'm hold with the IRS. Sounds like a drag, but surprisingly, every time I call them (and unfortunately, that's a lot) they're friendly, they give clear instructions and they solve whatever problems I have.

That's funny because the first time I had to deal with them, I seriously dreaded it. Kinda like the last time I went to the DMV. I cleared a whole afternoon in fear I'd be stuck there, but since I'd made an appointment, I was in and out in half an hour.

What organization have you dreaded dealing with and ended up happily surprised?


Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Question of the Day #329

The guest list is packed. The celebrity bartenders are scheduled. The auction items are piling up. Team Stacie's Benefit this Friday in Santa Monica is humming with energy. It's ON.

And I'm psyched. What's the last event you got crazy excited for?


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Question of the Day #328

Cearly, we all love the muppets! From Cookie Monster to Oscar to Statler and Waldorf. (Those are the grumpy guys in the balcony.) I remember being a kid and being soooo psyched when the Muppet Show was about to air. I can still hear the theme song:

It's time to start the music
It's time to light the lights
It's time to get things started
On the Muppet Show tonight!

Bump, bump, bump...(That's my version of the bass!)

Oh how I loved that show. What show did you love as a kid?


Monday, September 28, 2009

Question of the Day #327

My roommate and I don't see each other much. In fact, GB has come over a couple times and he's convinced that my roommate is imaginary. So I'm nicknaming said roommie Snufflelupagus.

Which makes me think about muppets. And boy, do I love muppets! Kermie, Elmo, Cookie Monster - whoever. I just want to snufflelupagus 'em all up!

Who is your favorite muppet?


Sunday, September 27, 2009

Question of the Day #326

While driving today, I tuned into CNN and realized that in the storm of craziness lately, I haven't listened to or watched the news at all. I have no idea what is going on in the world. And to be honest, part of me doesn't want to know. Maybe that's why it's so easy not to tune in.

How do you get your news? And are you a news junkie or are you enjoying the same blissful ignorance I am lately?


Saturday, September 26, 2009

Question of the Day #325

Doc, a regular at the pub, everyone once in a while comes up with a quote that makes me think. Last night he said:

"Basic moral decisions have two components, the right decision and how fast you do it. It stretches the soul."

I never thought about that - acting right away versus pondering a decision. Maybe you say you're going to do something, but what if you never get around to it? Does acting quickly impact the overall right decision in the end? And is it the pondering that stretches the soul or the fast action?


Friday, September 25, 2009

Question of the Day #324

It's Friday! Woohoo! Except I'm working all weekend. Do you work weekends? Weekdays? Odd hours?


Thursday, September 24, 2009

Question of the Day #323

Even when I have a full day off, I feel like I'm a hamster on a wheel. There are a zillion things to be done. We're working on a benefit for my friend, Stacie, who has breast cancer, and running Team Stacie is like running another business. I'm fielding calls from crazy generous donors left and right. Woohoo!

And that got me thinking about donating. We've discussed volunteering before, but do you actually donate money or auction items to a certain cause?

(If you'd like to help, join Team Stacie on Facebook! Look for the Team Stacie logo above.)


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Question of the Day #322

Yesterday's question covered where we want to end up, so it's only natural that I ask where you started. I was born in New Jersey, moved to Boston then flew to LA on a whim and never left.

Where were you born? Do you live close to your hometown now?


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Question of the Day #321

This question is not meant to be morbid. I'm just wondering, when you die, what do you want to be done with your remains?

I don't really know about mine. I haven't really thought about it. I guess I'm wondering if you have...


Monday, September 21, 2009

Question of the Day #320

Today completely got away from me. I scrambled all day and before I knew it, my mom called me, panicked because it was evening and I hadn't posted a question.

Apparently, a lack of a blog post is a sure sign that something is wrong in my world.

What red flag would alarm people in your life that something has gone awry?


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Question of the Day #319

So, as I'm adjusting to my new home, I'm especially aware of what I hear and don't hear. I don't hear the freeway anymore. Yay! I don't hear howling dogs at odd hours of the night. And I don't hear the lone barker.

I do hear kids playing. And I hear a woman who laughs a crazy cackly, on the edge of nutty laugh. I've decided to name her The Cackler.

But I'll take the sounds of happy people over freeway and howlers anyday.

What sounds do you hear where you live?


Saturday, September 19, 2009

Question of the Day #318

Regular blogger, Lisa D, has a dilemma. She is going to be a secret reader for her little one's kindergarten class and she doesn't know what to read. Her daughter's all time fave is Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, but with the movie coming out, she's worried that pick might seem predictable.

So we ask the perfect audience, which of your favorite picture books might make a good choice for this fab secret reader?


Friday, September 18, 2009

Question of the Day #317

My superagent, Daphne Unfeasible, has made like five sales in the last few weeks. And one deal was this crazy multi-book series sold at auction. Every time I log on the kt literary website, there's more great news! kt literary is seriously on fire.

One of those authors, the incredibly funny and oh so willing to give me advice when we've never actually met face to face, Carrie Harris, is one of the happy authors! Her novel, NO PAIN, No BRAIN was just sold to Wendy Loggia at Delacorte. Woohoo for zombies!!!

And my brother, a football coach in NJ, just opened his season with not one, but TWO big wins!

Am I crazy or are things looking up? Is there a spark in the air? A little upswing, if you will?

Let's share some good news. Who do you know who's on a positive roll?


Thursday, September 17, 2009

Question of the Day #316

I just froze the leftover marinara sauce from last night's spaghetti and meatballs and was sort of like...hmm...more meatballs. I love meatballs, don't get me wrong, but when you make them once a week and also for special orders, you kinda don't want to eat them anymore.

Have you ever enjoyed a certain food so much that you actually got sick of it?


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Question of the Day #315

Now that we have African safaris on the brain, I must ask, what's the coolest place you've ever been?

I haven't been anywhere too interesting, but B and I once took a helicopter ride (which surprisingly terrified me) over the Hawaiian islands. Swooping around waterfalls and hovering through Jurassic canyons was amazing.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Question of the Day #314

If you went on an African safari, which animal would you be most interested in seeing?

I think I'd like to see leopards in action. There's something super cool and edgy about them. Plus their spots make the hottest shoes.



Monday, September 14, 2009

Question of the Day #313

If you were to be in any publication, which publication would you pick and what would you like to be mentioned for?

For example, I'd like to be on The New York Times Best Seller List. So maybe you'd like to have a recipe published in Real Simple magazine? Your garden featured in Better Homes and Gardens? Maybe you'd like to be interviewed by Sports Illustrated?

What do you think?


Sunday, September 13, 2009

Question of the Day #312

It is overcast. Downright cloudy. And in any other part of the world, I'd say it looks like it's going to rain. But unfortunately, there's a better chance of me learning that my long lost great uncle left me 40 billion dollars today than there is of rain in LA.

What a bummer. I love LA. I love the sunshine, the heat. The lack of humidity. But once in a while, nothing is better than a rainy day.

What are some of your favorite once in a while treats?


Saturday, September 12, 2009

Question of the Day #311

Through the packing process I have come across mixed tapes from my highschool BFF and single 45s I bought as a tween - before the word "tween" even existed.

I found records in dusty boxes. Like Prince 1999, which I bought when 1999 seemed like light years away. And the CDs. Hundreds of CDs. And I was never a huge music buyer. Not like my rocker friends who have walls lined with jewel cases. I just had your average girl's worth.

I'm getting rid of about 75% of them. Not because I'm not into them anymore, but because at some point, I've downloaded most of the material onto my computer. And since I've purchased more songs from iTunes, sadly, the CDs are sort of obsolete.

So how you do listen to music? Do you spin old vinyl? Rock out to your iPod? Blast satellite radio in your car?


Friday, September 11, 2009

Question of the Day #310

So I wrote a whole other question and then logged onto Facebook. The majority of east coast friends acknowledged the anniversary of September 11. Some of them mourned their friends and family members. Some of them sent up prayers for the servicemen and women who died that day. And some of them just suggested having a moment of silence today.

My west coast friends are posting their usual posts.

On September 11, 2001, my family members were directly affected. I'm not going to share that story, but I will share this. When I went to work (in LA) the next day, nobody got it. My boss, who had never been to NYC, pulled me aside and asked me about World Trade Center Plaza. How big was it exactly? What could I compare it to?

Californians didn't seem to get the scope of it all. And this is NOT a slam to Californians. I'm here 15 years and I'm pretty sure my Jersey Girl label is starting to wear off. It just provokes an interesting question. Unless something impacts us directly - do we even notice?


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Question of the Day #309

I think cheese is the food of the gods. (Okay, I stole that label from my sister. She called it the food of the gods first. But whatevs.) It's probably one of my favorite foods. Gouda, blue, fontina, cheddar. Ooo...horseradish cheddar. Goat cheese, manchego, swiss, fresh mozzarella. Whatever the cheese, I'm in love.

But some people hate it.

How do you feel about cheese?


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Question of the Day #308

My friend B posted this status update last night:

"Tonight i can vividly recall being in 4th grade and sneaking out every single weekend night to ride bikes at 3am around my town. and i wish anything i was doing right now in my life made me feel as alive as that did."

I TOTALLY get what he means. Remember when you were a kid and everything was crazy exciting? Stomach flips when your crush looked at you? Excitement for weeks over your BFF's upcoming parentless party? The electric buzz on the last day of school before summer?

Sneaking out during the night was thrilling. Dodging behind bushes when headlights appeared. Every tiny wind whistle or branch snap sparked shivers down your back.

When was the last time you felt that kind of "alive"?


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Question of the Day #307

My friend P asks wacky questions. Like the other day, while gobbling a plate of mashed potatoes, he said, "Kid, if you only ate mashed potatoes for the rest of your life, do you think you could stay alive?"

Then there was, "Would you rather have someone smash your knee with a bat once or get sand thrown in your face once every hour, at any point during that hour, so you don't know when it's coming, for the rest of your life?"

And of course, "If you had to choose between never having sex again or having to pour maple syrup on every single thing you eat for the rest of your life, which would you chose?"

The entertainment is endless.

How would you answer P's questions?


Monday, September 7, 2009

Question of the Day #306

It's Labor Day. One of the biggest BBQ days of the year.

What kind of fun did you cook up this weekend?


Sunday, September 6, 2009

Question of the Day #305

I drove to breakfast this morning without hitting any red lights, driving the speed limit or a tad above, and I didn't slow for traffic once.

LA on a holiday weekend is a holiday. It's like being on vacation. No crowds, no lines, no traffic.

It's heavenly.

What's your town like this holiday weekend?


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Question of the Day #304

It's Moving Sale Day and I'm cleaning house. Seriously. Furniture, clothes, cds, plants, electronics, whatever.

The idea of living a little more lightly is really appealing. Forget the stuff. Concentrate on actions.

So, what stuff in your home would you like to get rid of?


Friday, September 4, 2009

Question of the Day #303

My eye is twitching. It started yesterday while packing, cleaning, and doing other moving chores, which we have now nicknamed "Labor Camp."

I went to bed early, slept almost 10 hours and woke to more eye twitching. The natural cause would be stress, right? I'm definitely stressed. No doubt about it. But usually I get pain in my shoulders and neck or I have nightmares. Now this. A twitchy eye? Seriously?

How does stress manifest itself in your body?


Thursday, September 3, 2009

Question of the Day #302

Enjoy Shannon, friend and waitress extraordinaire on Spaghetti and Meatballs Night.

Clearly, she's quite the promoter.

Anyway, that got us thinking about t-shirts with crazy sayings on them.

"I have one that says, 'Got Wine?'" said E.

"N had one with, 'This is what awesome looks like,' written across it," I said.

"I don't have any t-shirts with writing on them," said H.

"This could be a good question," said E.

"Why, yes, yes it could," I replied.

So the question is, do you wear any t-shirts with funny sayings on them? If not, what have you seen that you like?


Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Question of the Day #301

I'm getting ready to move. And I have tons of stuff. So I'm looking at the whole thing as a purge. I'm selling and donating just about everything I don't use on a daily basis.

So yesterday, as I sorted through my clothes, removing anything donatable, I found a top I thought I might like to keep. When I tried it on, I noticed something was missing.

The ball that holds my belly ring in place had disappeared. In 15 years, that ring has sat securely in place and yesterday, while I scrambling to pack a huge house into two boxes, it somehow fell off.

I searched the shower and my bed. I got on all fours and scanned the floors. After a while I realized I needed professional help. I had no idea where to go. And I was completely annoyed.

I got my belly pierced when I was 22 years old. At a place on Melrose Ave in Hollywood, where all things cool happened. But the shop couldn't still be there, could it?

I didn't even remember where it was on Melrose. But after some googling, I found a tattoo and piercing shop in the same area, grabbed my shopping list of ingredients for tonight's Spaghetti and Meatballs Night, packing tape, banker boxes and bubble wrap and drove down there, one finger on my navel, holding the horseshoe in place.

The only guy in the shop was a tattoo artist, who admitted to having no idea about piercings. My hope sank. We tried to screw on a new ball, but I don't think it was the right size, plus my unsteady hands got nowhere. He asked if I could come back after 2:00 when his boss would be in, but I needed to have packed 10 boxes by 2:00.

I told him I was in the middle of moving and he must have seen the defeat on my face, because he called his boss, who showed up two minutes later.

The boss looked at my impaired jewelry, found a new silver ball, and screwed it onto my belly ring - professionally, with tools. Not shaky hands. Then he told me the whole thing was free of charge.

I was sooo relieved I could have hugged the guy. This may sound like a minor thing to someone else. I mean, I could have taken the ring out. And I considered that, and asked myself if losing the piece was a sign to let go of that too, but the piercing isn't just a pair of jeans I haven't worn in a year or a lamp I might not ever use again.

As silly as it may sound, it's a part of me.

So I'm very thankful that in the middle of a crazy time, those two guys made an upsetting loss disappear. And did they did it out of kindness.

So I have two questions today. Feel free to answer either or both:

1. What piece of your life are you not ready to part with yet?

2. What kind thing has someone done for you lately?


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Question of the Day #300

I'm borrowing this one from If...Questions for the Game of Life:

If you could be invisible for one hour, where would you go and what you would you do?


Monday, August 31, 2009

Question of the Day #299

The winds have shifted and it's pretty smokey here. I'm expecting it to snow ash soon. (Yes, seriously. That happens.)

I'm still praying for the fire victims. But I'm also praying for the firefighters - big time. I cannot imagine working in 100 degree weather, fighting a raging fire in rough terrain. Must be really scary and really exhausting. Beyond anything I can imagine.

I really admire them.

Who do you really admire and why?


Sunday, August 30, 2009

Question of the Day #298

The beach was amazing. It's been crazy hot in LA - like 110 in the Valley, 105 in Hollywood and 95 in Santa Monica. When it's 95 at the beach, you know it's hot.

It felt sooo good. The water was warm and the waves weren't superbig so we got to swim and stay in the ocean for a long time. All was perfect on the beach.

Except when we turned around and looked back at the city.

There's a huge wildfire in Angeles Crest Forest. 32,000 acres have burned and it's only 5% contained. Three homes have been lost, three people have been injured and the temperatures are rising.

It's fire season in LA. And while it comes every year, there's still something incredibly unsettling about lazing around on the beach and bodysurfing when people are in danger so serious that you can see it from 30 miles away.

A blatant reminder that while we're out having a good time it's important to think of and send good vibes to the people who aren't.

Who are you thinking of and wishing good things for?


Saturday, August 29, 2009

Question of the Day #297

You're never going to believe this. Or maybe you will. But, I never got to the beach. I wanted to go Thursday. Guilt killed me. Yesterday, I decided to take a stand against my guilt, but then I ran out of time.

Today, I'm going. Like after the "xoxo, Suzanne" I'm shutting down the computer, putting on my suit, spritzing on my Coppertone and heading out the door.

What have you been wanting to do but just haven't been able to?


Friday, August 28, 2009

Question of the Day #296

I did not go to the beach.

I let guilt win.

But not today. Screw guilt.

What are you going to take a stand against today?


Thursday, August 27, 2009

Question of the Day #295

I'm thinking about going to the beach. Crazy, huh? I don't have to be anywhere until 5:30. Then why do I feel so guilty about having a beach day? I'm not even there and I feel guilty.

What are you feeling guilty about?


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Question of the Day #294

With all the catering and waitressing I've been doing lately, there's an odd shift in my schedule. Like last week, on Wednesday, I cooked for Spaghetti and Meatballs Night at Sonny McLean's. Thursday night I waited tables. Friday night I waited tables. Saturday morning I cooked for the Fantasy Football Draft I catered on Sunday. Then I waited more tables during the Red Sox / Yankees afternoon game. Saturday night I cooked. Sunday morning I cooked and delivered the food.

And suddenly, Monday and Tuesday have become my weekend. (Although I did work on a writing assignment so there was some work involved - just a different type of work.)

This is totally odd. I have been a Monday - Friday girl my whole (post college) life. And right now, although I'm thankful for the work, I'm a little turned upside down.

What's got you feeling upside down?


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Question of the Day #293

Last night I curled up with my TiVo and watched this week's episode of True Blood. Set in a tiny town in Louisiana, a vampire and his mindreader girlfriend tried to save her BFF, as she was possessed by the devil, who had taken residence there in the form of a woman. But the task was rather difficult, because the devil had possessed all the residents in town, except for Sam, the shapeshifter who can transform himself from human being to animal in seconds.

And the devil is after him, in particular, because she wants to cut his heart out and sacrifice him.

I, of course, was completely riveted. But when the show was over and I shut off the TV, I did ask myself, "Why in the world don't these people leave that creepy little town?"

You gotta love suspension of disbelief. When it's done right, it's done right.

What crazy alter universe/world/setting are you totally willing to read about or watch even though its existence is completely ridiculous?


Monday, August 24, 2009

Question of the Day #292

If you could rename yourself, would you?

I would not. I think my parents did a lovely job naming me and "Suzanne" and "Suzie" really seem to fit me. But there are some people who don't like their names. I've often heard people say, "I wish I'd been named something else."

Just wondering...


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Question of the Day #291

Yesterday, I had a question about Twitter, so I asked my friend Sarah how the heck it works. When I couldn't figure out how to blog, she explained that to me too. When it comes to anything computerlike, she is my go to girl.

She would make an excellent technical tutor. And I sure as heck need one.

What do you need tutoring for?


Saturday, August 22, 2009

Question of the Day #290

Tomorrow I'm catering a Fantasy Football draft party. So the next 24 hours is all about creating manfood. But what's weird is that it's been chilly and overcast and all sorts of weird. It feels like November and football is starting and the summer is slipping away and I only got to the beach a couple times.

I'm bummed about the change of seasons and we don't really even have seasons! Are you feeling the change of seasons where you are? How are you feeling about it?


Friday, August 21, 2009

Question of the Day #289

It's Friday. You're sitting at your desk or working your job or doing whatever it is that you normally do on Friday. A magic genie pops up out of nowhere and says, "Hey, you! It's your lucky day. You get to go wherever you want to for the weekend. All expenses paid, with one guest. But you have to be back here, on time, Monday morning. So where do you want to go?"

I'd head to Cabo with H. Close enough that we could get back in time for Monday and hot enough that we could do nothing but laze on the beach and enjoy the scenery.

Who would you take on a free weekend jaunt and where would you go?


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Question of the Day #288

I can't do math. Simple math. I stink at it. Dividing scrambles my brain. Multiplying makes me nuts. I barely made it through core Algebra and Geometry in high school. In college, thankfully, we artsy students didn't have to take a bunch of math courses - just one core course, for which I had to have my father tutor me.

But I enjoyed English and Literature and Writing and did pretty well with them. When you were in high school, what was your best subject?


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Question of the Day #287

When standing rib roasts went on sale a couple months ago, I bought one that regularly would have been like 50 bucks for about $15, vacuum sealed it and froze it.

H and I like to gnaw on bones. Pork chops, lamb chops - any kind of chop. And prime rib is like the holy grail of bone gnawing. So we decided to save the roast for a special occasion. And after some crazy calendaring, the special occasion arrived last night.

We chose R and J as our dinner mates. There are no two funnier men. Especially when put at a dinner table together. We cackled about dating experiences, contemplated when to drop dealbreakers, discussed who's getting what and who's not, giggled through plenty of below average plans to obtain what we want and then broke into J's car.

It was very entertaining. And I think, that as a foursome, we are perfect dinner mates.

When you need to lift your spirits, who do you turn to?


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Question of the Day #286

Last night, while meeting with my fabulous writer's group, someone mentioned how during the SCBWI conference, one of the speakers asked whose career the writers would want. I immediately answered that I'd want Sarah Dessen's career.

She writes novels about characters who feel so real. And they're not "high concept" books, they're just stories about people trying to figure things out.

I'm into that. (Plus is it doesn't hurt that she's a steady bestseller.)

So, if you had to choose someone's career, whose would you want?


Monday, August 17, 2009

Question of the Day #285

I want a burger. It's that kind of day. So I'm going to Fatburger. It is what it sounds like. A fat burger. No thin patties that you have to search for between the buns.

Fatburgers are thick, delicious, juicy, loaded with cheese, onions, lettuce, tomatoes and I pair mine up with delicious skinny fries. (They have fat fries too, but I'm into the skinny fries.)

When you're dying for a burger, where do you go?


Sunday, August 16, 2009

Question of the Day #284

Today, we're having our first Sunday pool day of the summer. That's right, on August 16th. It clearly took us a while to uphold one of our favorite Summer traditions.

What summer activities have you not quite gotten to yet?


Saturday, August 15, 2009

Question of the Day #283

My friend S moved back to Boston a few years ago. Every year he visits during the summer and a bunch of us get together and have an annual brunch/breakfast. We're doing that this morning.

It's fun bunch of people I went to college with. It usually consists of tons of loud laughter and wacky storytelling.

I'm looking forward to it.

Do you have any annual get togethers? Who are they with?


Friday, August 14, 2009

Question of the Day #282

Last night, Ted and Suzi, two regulars at the pub sat down for dinner. My friends GB and K sat down with them. I squeezed into the booth beside GB.

"For 35 years..." Suzi said.

"You've been together 35 years?" I asked.

"Oh no...because this man made some very poor decisions, we were apart for 35 years." She smiled and reached for Ted's hand. He took hers and smiled back.

"What happened?" I asked.

"Well, we dated for a while in the 60's. But I had a son. And he wasn't ready for all that. So he ran off with a woman who made leather clothing for rock stars," Suzi explained.

"Like Cher?" I asked Ted.

"No, like Jim Morrison," he replied.

K's eyes bulged.

"Did you know Jim Morrison?"

"I sure did."

"Wow," K and I said.

"So then what happened?" I asked.

"Well, then I got married and we lost touch."

"You married the leather woman?" I asked.

"No, another woman," He said.

"So how did you finally find each other?"

"When I got divorced, my sister asked 'whatever happened to Suzi?'"

My eyes welled up. GB shook his head and handed me a napkin.

"Meanwhile," Suzi said. "I thought I'd die never having the chance to tell him how much I loved him."

More tears.

"So then what?" K asked.

"I called her brother and asked what Suzi was doing. He said, 'She's still in LA waiting for you.' So I called her. She didn't answer, so I left a message. I told her I wasn't going to leave my number, that I'd just keep calling until I got her."

"How did you feel when you got the message?" GB asked Suzi.

"I didn't even hear the words. I just heard his voice. I couldn't believe it was his voice."

"So what happened when you finally got on the phone?" I asked.

"I told him, 'I thought I was going to die without ever getting the chance to tell you how much I love you,'" Suzi said.

"And I told her I'd always loved her too," Ted said.

I sobbed.

"I think I see a Question of the Day in here somewhere," said GB.

I nodded. How could I not ask? I'm a sucker for love. True love. Love that doesn't start out crazy and then fade. Love that doesn't pale when things aren't going well. Love that's so important that you'll go back and search for it after 35 years.

Do you know any love stories like that?