I Can Haz Home?

I think I complained about Alabama’s lack of snow the entire time I was there. Even in July, when it wasn’t snowing in New York anyway. I missed those glory days when I would walk to school uphill both ways in six feet of snow, bootless, mittenless, and frostbitten. Well, I’m back in the Northeast now, and it hasn’t stopped snowing all day.

It’s beautiful. And I want nothing more than to leap around in it with my tongue out like Lucy (I believe she said January snow was the best, right?). But the roads here aren’t so great today. In fact the horses and buggies seem to be the only ones out today. Perhaps it’s because studded snow-tires are illegal in Pennsylvania. (I wonder if the horses are allowed to stud their shoes? Maybe that’s why they’re still able to clop around?

So I was under a bit of self-inflicted house arrest today, which was probably a good thing since I still had boxes all over the house, and was picking outfits out of suitcases as of last night. But not anymore! I spent the day cleaning, organizing and unpacking stuff the best I could, and behold! I have a house now!

Kennedy is thrilled. No really. I know I usually tease about my cat, but the truth is she hasn’t been herself the last couple days, and I think a lot of that had to do with chaotic living situation. Another big factor is probably the fact that I leave for work before it’s light out, and don’t get home til it’s dark again — she’s not used to being alone all day. Maybe she misses my Bama roommates? Anyway, she gave me the big blue eyes this morning. I swear I heard her meow “I can haz home?”

So I had no choice but to give that cat an organized home. I did not, however, share my cheezburger.

Here’s a quick slideshow of my place, if you happen to care. It’s not much, but I think it’ll do just fine for six months or so.

Default Conclusion: Boyf Is Wrong

It’s been about three weeks since I posted about the blogging debate Boyf and I had, and I figure now is as good a time as any to post an update about the survey.

The results are in, and they’re well, palyndromic. (That means he same forwards and backwards, not Russia-spotting Hockey-Momming VP candidate-like). I guess that’s what happens when only nine people respond.

Their votes? 44 percent agree with Boyf, calling blogs “self-important noise,” while 33 percent of those surveyed say blogs are outlets that contribute to the media and society. 22 percent say other.

I hate to do this — I really do, but given the small sample size Milk and Cheerios is going to have to classify these results as inconclusive, which means that under blog-poll bylaw Article 10.43 section j, the opinion of the blogger reigns supreme. Sorry Boyf. Looks like you’re wrong and I’m right.

At least you’re used to it.

Better Annie than Oliver Twist

Perhaps my greatest fear is that of being an orphan. Not that you would really refer to a 22 year old as an orphan, but I digress. One day last semester, I got a call on my cell phone from an emotional woman telling me my father had been in a car wreck and I should head down to the hospital as soon as possible.  I clearly panicked. Then after another couple minutes on the phone with my messenger, I discovered she had dialed the wrong number. Thank the Good Lord. It was about nine months after my mom had passed away and I was not ready to say Peace Out to the reigning Gordon.

Being an orphan can’t be fun.

But you know what can be fun? New jobs (sigh, I mean internships). Especially when the first day of your new job includes overhearing a rousing game of football in the middle of the office, and watching your editor roll by on a scooter. AND as if that’s not good enough, did I mention the PIZZA in the dining hall?? Mmmmm. Add those on to the seemingly abundant pile of work I’ll have over the next six months, and this little girl is in Type-A, Blue-Collar Heaven. (Minus the Tom Petty soundtrack, though I’ll check on their iPod policy later this week . . . )

So when I texted Boyf to let him know about the delightful day I was having, he replied:

“(Little Orphan Annie Voice) I think I’m gonna like it here!” – Boyf

I giggled a bit. Partially because he usually has the voice of a church organ, three octaves below middle C, partially because I can see him squirming in horror as his mom and lil sis force him to watch that fabulous musical, and partially because . . . Well, I think I’m gonna like it here!

And throwing on a lil red dress and ankle socks sure beats having to walk up to an assigning editor with my desktop empty and palms out, saying “Please Sir, I’d like some more work.” Poor Oliver 😦

A New State of Mind

My new house in Kutztown, PA

My new house in Kutztown, PA

It’s been a hectic week so far. I left DC Friday morning, dropped off some stuff in Kutztown and signed my lease then drove back to Albany. I spent the night there, then drove BACK here again in the morning on Saturday. It’s Sunday night now and I’ve gotten sort of settled in my new place. Work starts tomorrow morning, then I have to drive back to Albany again Tuesday morning for my Uncle Rick‘s funeral. I’ll stay up there til Thursday morning, then drive back down so I can get back to work on Friday morning.

Big Mama’s been working overtime, that’s for sure. It’s about a 500 mile roundtrip to head home and back, and she’s in need of an oil change (and a car wash!) But while life has been a bit crazy lately, I’ve been able to feel out Kutztown and the greater Lehigh Valley since my arrival here yesterday. I did a dry-run to work this morning (yea, I know it’s dorky, but that’s one of those things I just have to do before I start a new job).

 Route 222 toward Reading is a popular road I guess . . .

Route 222 toward Reading is a popular road I guess . . .

Then I went to the store and got a few things for my house. On my way there I got stuck behind a horse and buggy — I kid you not! My Big Cuz (who went to Kutztown University) had warned me about the possibility of this happening, but I had brushed him off, thinking he was pulling my leg. Leg unpulled. The Amish rep this hood in full force.

And as much as I’ve been grumbling about it, I have to admit, I kind of like Pennsylvania so far.  I found a great family-owned pizza joint down the street from me with a killer calzone last night, and I’m surrounded by farm land (score! Farm Girl gives Two Thumbs Up for this one), cute farm houses, homemade chocolate shops and other quaintdorable little businesses. Not to mention mini-golf (which Boyf will fall victim to when he emerges from Studyville in a couple weeks). And I’m really close to Reading, which is where Jon and Kate (plus 8!) live. I’m totally gonna try to find them.

Work’s not too far away, and there’s a Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks (coffee, coffee, coffee) right on my way — and my gym is there too. Cuz coffee is a fit body’s number one enemy. Unforch.

Again, if anyone knows of cool things to do in Kutztown or nearby please let me know!!! I’m hoping to make the most out of the next six months 🙂

Today’s pix taken with my phone . . . sorry bout the quality.

Growing Wheels

I really feel like I might be growing wheels. And if that’s not scientifically possible, then I guess I should just say my butt is perpetually numb, and taking the shape of a car seat.

Boyf and I finished our mini-road trip (I mean, 1,200 miles isn’t a real road trip, is it?) on Monday Dec. 22. Then on the morning of the 23, I drove 6 hours to the tippy-top of the Green Mountain State with Dad and Big Sis to ski for a week. Fast forward to this Monday (Dec. 29) when I was back in the car for the return trip “Home.”

I’ve been here about 24 hours now. And I’m just about all packed for a quick stop in NEPA to hit up Boyf for a cup of coffee, on my way to Washington D.C. to spend New Years Eve with the rest of the USATODAY interns (man I miss my crew). I’ll be in D.C. til Friday, at which point I’ll be driving through Kutztown (that’s in Pennsylvania for those of you who don’t know) to pick up a key to my new apartment. I’ll spend the afternoon moving a few things in, then drive back to NY (“Home”), grab the rest of my stuff and move in for real on Saturday.

Work starts Monday.

So — sorry for the massively boring post. Just wanted you to know why I wouldn’t be posting for the next couple days. Also, if anyone knows of any great places to eat (or drink) in Kutztown or the greater Lehigh Valley, please let me know.

Til next time (next state?).

Top 10 Worst Places to Meet A Man

10.)  Talladega Speedway, Talladega, ALMaggie, Emily and Jaclyn at TalladegaDon’t get me wrong. I had tons of fun losing my NAS-V-CARd at Talladega. Shake and bake, baby! But I happened to make the horrible mistake of wearing a dress to the race. Now, for those of you that know me, you probably realize that I wear a dress just about everywhere. So I thought nothing of breaking out a plaid sundress for the occasion. But the men of Talladega had apparently never seen anything like it. Cat calls, skirt-looker-uppers and disgusting beer-gutters abounded. Sorry Walker and Texas Ranger. No spider-monkey business for me at this race track.

9.) The Honors Student Association – Trust me here. Syracuse University’s Nerd Society has a hard time recruiting and retaining male membership. We had a boy once. I of course had a massive crush on him . . . Wonder whatever happened to him (leaves computer, checks little black book. Sighs. He lives in a different time zone now.)

8.)Speed Dating – Look, I know this is the kind of place you head to in search of a man, but let’s be honest – you’re not gonna meet your soul mate in the 90 seconds (or is it a minute) you’re allotted to get to know someone across a card table in a gymnasium. And if you’re not looking for a commitment, well – you should continue not looking for one somewhere else.

Emily, Maggie and Lee at the Alabama State Fair7.) The Alabama State Fair – Don’t get the wrong idea. I realize this is two Alabama locations in the first four list entries. And I also realize that my readers in the northeast probably have a stereotype about what Alabama men (and even women) are like. Your stereotypes are completely unfounded. Your stereotypes about people at state fairs in general, however, completely valid. Although there’s no better aphrodisiac than a deep-fried Oreo.

6.) The Health Clinic – “It’s just a rash. It’ll clear up in 7 to 10 days.” That kind of excuse might work on some people, but I hope you’re smart enough to see through it. And if you don’t actually have the brains to make it through this one on your own, well then, that’s what you have Milk and Cheerios for. Trust me. Stay clear.

5.) Day care – Just picking up his nephew my ass. 

4.) Scranton, Pennsylvania – Um. I think there’s about one good man to be found in the entire Scranton metro area (if you can call that a metro area), and his name is Jim Halpert. Wonderful as he is, we all know he’s taken and alas, there’s no hope for the rest of us. So ladies, if you have the ability to do so, please avoid the 570 area code. You won’t be sorry.

Maggie and Suzie prepare for a classy evening.3.) Toga Parties – Look, I love a good toga party as much as the next girl. Trust me. But there are a few basic rules about college fetes that have to be followed. Never bring a guy home from a bar. Never bring a guy home from a fraternity party. And never, never bring a guy home if he resembles John Belushi in any way, shape or form. It’s Girl Code. Please don’t violate Girl Code.

2.) Bowling Alleys, Roller Rinks, or Arcades – They were awesome in middle school. In fact, I think I had three or four roller-rink birthday parties over the years. (It helped that I grew up near the world’s largest roller arena) But when it comes down to it, that kind of fun should be left in your rear-view mirror, along with your Nano Pet, platform shoes, and butterfly hair clips – no matter how romantic a couple’s skate may sound.

1.) And the number one worst place to meet a man is Jail – Look. I’m not here to judge. Maybe you did a night of hard time for a childish prank, ridiculous stack of parking tickets, or sassing a police officer. But that does not allow you to form a relationship during your time in the slammer. I know he seems all James Dean-y and rebellious. And I bet he looks really cute in his cut-off jorts and flannel shirt. And whoo-ee do I find it hard to resist a shoulder tattoo, but please. For me. Let it go. Resist the temptation to fly with the jail bird. You’ll thank me later.

Don’t Call It A RunningBack

Jay Peak, VermontI think we were about 5 minutes into the first run of the day when I took the big slide. I had reached the crest of a hill, at which point I caught a death cookie and crashed face-first into the snow. If only I had been able to stop at that – but gravity being what it is, I continued to travel down the mountain, face-first on my tummy (like a home-made Maggie Sled) for about 60 yards.

Sixty yards on the first play of the game? If I was a running back, I could have single handedly saved Greg Robinson’s career. Alas, I’m just a washed-up former skier who can’t quite find her footing. At least I can say I stayed on my feet for the rest of the day (save one or two quick indiscretions). It’s a good thing too. I’ve got a bruise the size of a small piñata on my right hip and the last thing I need is to match it on the other side, or add an addition.

Dad Chomps Cookies in a GladeLucky for me, my father was able to take over my spot as Spill-Master Extraordinaire. Looks to me like he has a hankering for those cookies. He took a helluva fall earlier this morning in a glade before taking the Dive To End All Dives on our last run this afternoon. Picture this: Giant farmer comes over the crest of a hill in a large banana suit, chews cookie, splats on face, and continues down the hill on his back for about 70 yards (breaking my own record – the Orange haven’t seen a play like that since Floyd Little), skidding so fast and forcefully that both his skis sailed off along the way.

Wow.

And so the Running Back of the Year Award goes to my Dad, Sandy Gordon, for successfully rushing 70 yards for a totally gnarly TD between two trees.

Give that man a cookie.