Sunday, November 28, 2010

Why I love BYU fans

Driving home after the game yesterday, Kate's husband Ryan turned on sports radio so we could listen to a few recaps.  For the most part, all the analysis came down to whether Utah would be able to hack it in the Pac-12 next year based on tonight's performance (irrelevant) and BYU fans complaining about a questionable call (typical).*

But my very favorite debate was who was truly the better team - Utah or BYU?

Utah with its 10-2 record and a (admittedly close) win over BYU ... or BYU, with a 6-6 record, and a loss to Utah. 

So tough to figure out.

As the debate raged on about physicality, statitistics, aggressiveness, attitude, whose team was trending up versus down, and who just "looked better" on the field, I began to wish there were a way to determine which of two teams was superior to the other.

Perhaps there should be a way to assess the skill level, leadership, ingenuity, toughness and cohesiveness of two different groups of athletes.  Maybe we could assign points to different actions, and give a certain amount of time (just throwing it out there - four fifteen minute quarters maybe) to see who achieves the most points.

Seems fair to me.

* Before you get all outraged and send me links to the instant-replay, I just want to say this: Sports are not scientific.  Let's assume the call was wrong.  Guess what?  Mistakes get made, teams win and lose over bad luck, and it all evens out in the end.  Cough cough Washington State?  Yeah.  So please, keep my blog a NO BITCHING ZONE.

(Except for my bitching.)

(OK, you can bitch.  But minimal pro-BYU bitching, please.  There's already too much of that in the world.)

And as for the possibility the call was right?  Look.  The calls are made on the field.  If they are challenged, there has to be incontrovertable evidence that the call was wrong or the call stands.  The call was challenged, and there was not sufficient evidence to overturn it.  If you want to live in a world of activist referees, fine, but personally, I want to live in a world where our judges call it like they see it, and restrain  themselves based on the parameters they are given.  Liberal hippies.

Finally, there is also the luck factor.  Yes, a punt-interception-touchdown drive is a bit of a fluke.  But to that I just want to say, in general, the classics had it right: Fortes fortuna adiuvat.  Suck it, monkeys.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Yankee Doodle Sighting Number 2

He's back!

Different sports coat - black velvet this time.  Different riding boots - black leather.  Different riding pants -black again.  His vest was black-and-silver and the tie MATCHED.

I know Thanksgiving is on Thursday, but this really might be the high point of my week.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

At least I'm not a giant bug

A few days ago at work, my co-worker Sam and I were down in the doc review room, as usual.

I remarked that I have been feeling a bit existential lately.

And Sam said, "Do you ever read Dinosaur Comics?"

And I said yes.

And Sam said, "I read one the other day that said, 'This is the youngest you will ever be, for the rest of your life.'"

Friday, November 19, 2010

Uh, you're welcome

(If you've already seen it, I know I'm late to the party.  Doesn't change the fact that this is a stunning piece of art, though.)

Do you know why Dr. House is special?

Because he's good at reading people.

And other people are not good at reading people.

Which makes Dr. House even more special.

And people who try to be Dr. House even more lame. 

This is why whenever I see the trailer for Love and Other Drugs (which I feel would be more appropriately titled, "Pretty People With Emotional Problems"), I am reminded that there is nothing more annoying that someone attempting psychoanalysis.

Yup, if you call a girl by the wrong name repeatedly, she will totally put out.  If you are obviously phony, but bring a woman flowers, you will be rewarded with improved financial dealings.  And if you tell a guy that you're psychologically damaged, he will mature and stop being a bad person, and then fall in love with you.

Because everyone is dumber than you, and they will all fall for second-rate psychological tricks.

I hope living by these theories works out for everyone.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Dear professionalism brownie,

Thank you for being chocolately and delicious, and getting me through a five-hour lecture on being a good lawyer, complete with hypotheticals about soliciting clients (not applicable to me), contingency fees (not applicable to me), communicating effectively with clients (not applicable to me), being cordial with opposing counsel (not applicable to me), taking the high road when confronted with dirty tricks (not applicable to me) and maintaining a respectful decorum toward the court (also, not applicable to me).

Sure am glad we were separated into specialized "breakout groups" and I got to attend the course with other first-year associates in medium-to-large-sized law firms and talk about how to deal with dissociating partners (shockingly, not applicable to me).

Because at least that room had the brownies.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Dressing fail

Yesterday I was pretty stoked about my outfit.  Usually I shuffle into work wearing my loosest pants, flattest shoes, most casual-but-still-kinda-business shirt, and my hair full of dry shampoo product.  Basically, exactly what you'd expect from someone so lazy that she regularly arrives at work ten minutes after rolled out of bed.  (Yay for a 3 minute commute!)

But yesterday, I put on a dark gray pencil skirt, white ruffled tuxedo blouse that buttoned to the neck, the fire engine red cardigan I bought this weekend (Yay for spending your way to happiness!) and my yellow and brown bootie sandals.

But every time I went to the bathroom and caught a glimpse of myself in the full-length mirror, I kept thinking something was wrong.

Around my fourth trip to the restroom (I drink a lot of Diet Coke at work), I figured out what it was.

Keep scrolling ...

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Another thing (or five) I don't get

So the puppy crusade is back up and running.  (For those of you who don't already know, here's some background: Part One, Part Two.)  (And for those of you too lazy to click on links, like moi, here's the short version: I wanted to get a puppy.  I wanted to get a rescue organization puppy.  I have been deemed unacceptable by several rescue organizations.  Between that and other life-defeating events, I have put the puppy search on indefinite hold.)

Anyway, one of the organizations I applied with months ago has now called me.  (Ohhh, so I'm not incapable of love now, am I?)  They have recently rescued a few dogs from a puppy mill in the midwest, and two of the dogs were knocked up.  Would I mind filling out another application?

I've said it before, and I'll say it again.  When you try to pretend that getting a dog is the equivalent of getting a kid, it makes people not like you.  I could go get a puppy tomorrow if I wanted, but I want to be a "good person" and get one that needs a home.  That does not make it okay for you to ask if you can come to a home investigation to determine whether I'm cooking meth in my bathtub.

(Ahem.  I totally filled out the application, and I totally agreed to the home inspection if I were deemed an appropriate potential puppy-mom.  What can I say, I'm a conformist.)

Also?  Two things that will completely negate my claims of wanting to be a "good person."  I want a puppy.  I don't want a full grown dog.  I have no real reason for this preference other than puppies are cute, and I don't want to fix another person's mistake.  (Why is a four-year-old dog now in need of a home?  I'm going to assume that the dog was poorly trained or poorly treated by its previous owners, and I am going to back away from that situation slowly.  Don't care if that makes me a bad person.)

Yes, I know puppies are more work than an already potty-trained dog.  Do not care.  Being a lawyer is harder than working at Target, but you don't see me putting on a red smock every day.

Secondly, I don't want to pay a lot for a rescue dog.  I know this is arbitrary, and once again I do not care.  But the fact that you want to charge me $650 for a puppy that had to be rescued from some awful puppy mill?  Are you serious?  I could get a non-inbred dog for that kind of dough.  I would be perfectly happy to reimburse your cost of housing and feeding the dog, pay for any vet bills that were incurred, and I'd even give a donation to your organization so you can continue the good work you are doing.  But if you want people to give you donations, and preferably continue giving on a biannual basis, you need to not be the kind of jerks who charge $650 for a homeless puppy.

(For the record, if I am selected to take one of the puppies home, I will likely pay without complaint.  See conformist, above.)

But as I was on the phone with the Puppy Person, she asked me about my schedule, and I told her that I work a lot.  "But I can adjust," I said, and explained how said adjustment would occur.  (More coming home for lunch, more working at my apartment, more hiring a dog walker.)  "Obviously, I don't do that right now.  But I'd change my schedule if I got the dog."

"Oh, you'll change your schedule, all right," Puppy Person laughed in that condescending-obnoxious way people have when they talk about how hard it is to care for a small creature, be it dog or baby.

I smiled (even though she obviously couldn't see me, I feel like people can hear the smile in your voice, but rarely the phoniness behind it) and said, "Yes, well, I imagine."

Yes, if I had a dog or a kid or a GigaPet, my life would change.  For example, now I'm free.  My apartment is clean and full of sharp edges and no poop and very little beeping.  If I had a dog or child or electronic version of either, I imagine I might cover some sockets and sleep less and gain a disturbing level of comfort with poop.

But guess what?  I AM NOT GOING TO DO ANY OF THAT YET.  I have met people who prepare for their future babies (and presumably, people like Puppy Person, who expect me to already have a box full of chew toys somewhere even though I don't have a pet) and I will never cease to be disturbed by it.  Shocking, I know, but most of these pre-baby preparers revealed their proclivities at church.

Case one: A girl who said it was important to prepare for motherhood no matter what stage of life we are in, including the "not-going-to-be-a-mom-within-the-next-five-years-guaranteed"* stage of life.  Multi-vitamins, I guess.

Case two: A Relief Society** president who asked if there were girls who would volunteer to babysit for moms in the family ward that meets in our church house.  Even though I dislike most children*** (don't care, judge away) I was fully prepared to sign that volunteer sheet.  Until the R.S. Pres added, "For those of you who want an opportunity to put your mothering skills to use.  It pays $7 an hour."

Bitch, please.  I will watch kids for the good of humanity, but not for minimum wage.  And if you ever say "mothering skills" to a roomful of single, childless women again, I'm going to go get my ovaries removed in protest.


Cross your fingers that the home inspection goes well, will ya?

* Oh, so you think that's not a guarantee?  Well, it's pretty dang close.  Forget about dating and engagement periods; someone as emotionally retarded as me will need 3 years minimum prior to any reproduction to make sure a marriage sticks.  Also see aversion to poop, above, and strong preference for child-free vacations (not previously mentioned).

** Relief Society is a church meeting, kind of like Sunday School, for adult women in the Mormon church.  It's supposed to be service-oriented, and usually is.  There are also cutesy fonts and centerpieces and the kind of passive-aggressiveness that only a religious organization can foster.  In short, a bit of a mixed bag.

*** DUH, I plan to like mine, assuming I ever spawn/adopt.  Jeez, you people are so quick to judge.  (In case you can't hear the smile through my typing, it's there, and completely sincere.)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Question for the peanut gallery

Does it say more about the state of television programming today, or my own obsessive one-track-brain behavior, that given the opportunity to catch up on precious TV time this weekend, I just re-watched The Walking Dead again?

(Yes ... "re-watched" and "again" were both necessary for accuracy in that sentence.)

Feel free to vote in my imaginary poll:

A. The Walking Dead is the!  What else would you watch?  And even if you could think of something, why stray from the things you love?  Order that same salad at Cafe Rio AGAIN!

B.  It might be time to branch out.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Thanksgiving Movie

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, and I have always regretted not having a movie for it.* 

Today, all that changed.

(Some cannibalism included.)

* A movie on Thanksgiving is not the same as a Thanksgiving-movie.  Hence, the time the whole extended family gathered 'round the television to watch Mel Gibson lose his shit Revolution-style was merely a movie-on-Thanksgiving.  

Other things I should have been

1. Hair stylist

2. Pastry chef

3. Taxi driver

4. EMT

5. Massage therapist

6. PhD student (I could have been that one forevvvvvvver)

7. Painter.  Not like an artist, but someone who goes in and paints someone's walls.

8. Dental hygienist

9. Landscaper

10. Proofreader

11. Typist

12. Sample maker

13. Flight attendant

14. Glass blower

15. Vet tech

I still like being a lawyer, but sometimes it's nice to think about what I'm going to do for my second career.  When I turn 30.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

And I can't be the only one ...

I get some serious ding-ding-ding-ding-ding!s on my gaydar whenever I hear a guy start gushing about Jimmer Fredette.

Perhaps unrelated, perhaps not, I also get ding-ding-ding-ding-ding!s on my pompousdar whenever someone starts talking about "Jack Kennedy."  As if they were close, personal friends.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The streak

Things have been going kind of meh for me the last month, between problems with work, family, friends, terrible losses to TCU, personal whatnot and arbitrary rent increases.  

But today, I got three pieces of good news all in a row.  I'm thinking that instead of worrying about jinxing it, I'm going to brag like hell in hopes of making it last even longer.  There will be many exclamation points.  Go team good news!  

New work assignments!  

Etsy deliveries!  


Happy non-rejecty email referencing potential personal and professional development!*

* Yeah, that I'm still afraid of jinxing.  Keepin' it vague.  Not nearly as confident as all the !'s would imply.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Don't buy all the hotdogs, Liz

Like most people, I hate unfairness.

Today I found out that my rent will be increasing a minimum of $60 a month (with a new 12 month lease) or $95 a month (with a new six month lease).  This is justified by the fact that my apartment "should" (in someone's mind) be rented for $1100 a month, so I am still getting a discount.  

The thing is, there is no way there is enough demand for apartments in my building to justify $1100 a month.  There's barely enough to justify what I currently pay, which I know is probably too much, but I love living within walking distance of my firm.  My building isn't full, and it seems like everywhere I go there are "For Rent" signs.  

This rent increase is predicated on one thing, and one thing only: people hate moving.  

For example, I finally have everything in my apartment exactly the way I like it.  My TV, my books, my desk, my bed, my couches, my decorations.  It took me ten damn months to get this place in order.  Plus, if I move, I will also probably have to hire movers* over Christmas, since my lease ends at the beginning of January. 

But I really ... really ... hate the idea of paying more rent on an already-overpriced apartment.   

So, I figure I could cancel my cable and continue living here.

Or move on principle, to an apartment that will almost certainly be cheaper.  

Or, out of spite, buy a condo and stop throwing rent away.  (Spoiler alert: I do not want the responsibility of home ownership, and am not entirely convinced that real estate is a good investment.  This scenario is therefore extremely unlikely.)

Any thoughts you all have on this matter will be appreciated.  I have until the end of the week (classy, apartment managers) to decide.    

* My dad suggested, once again, that I call the Elders' Quorum President and ask for church help if I decide to move.  Unfortunately, since I haven't been assigned a home teacher in going on eleven months, that seems like a dead end even before I begin.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

In which I lecture all of you, though none of you likely deserve it

Today's game was not a fun experience.

And I know it sucks to watch good players make bad mistakes.

But while everyone needs to be able to express their frustration with a bad play (brief yelling, groaning, the occasional Gob Bluth "Come on!"), if you plan to boo your own team, just get the hell out of the stadium.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Who knew? I miss working at Deseret Book

I was back in Utah for a few days to be sworn in as a proud member of the Utah Bar Association.  (Yeah, basically, when I was a junior highschooler, imagining myself published and totally wealthy by 26, what I really meant was LAWYER WITH DUAL ADMISSION.) 

I love "Austin" in the Fall.  85 degrees and blue skies.  Palm trees inside, autumn-scented Bath and Body Works candles inside. (Uh, yeah, autumn has a scent.  And it comes in Bath and Body Works candles  Can't believe you didn't know that.)

But being back home - even wearing my orange coat from last fall - made me very nostalgic for when my life was broke and awesome.

I worked in a super laid back office.  Everybody was chill, even if most of them were BYU fans.  (And one of them sang at me once.  Scratch that.  Several times.)  I always finished work by 5 pm, and never felt compelled to take anything home.  I made just enough money to justify eating overly expensive sandwiches and soup every day at lunch.  (Miss you, Hagermans.)  Several of my law school homies worked just around the corner.  The boy I was dating lived within walking distance of my office.  Going to a Ute game didn't involve packing and airports.

I have very mixed feelings about living in Austin.  I love most of the people I work with, even if only a few of them are chill.  I almost never finish work by 5 pm, and I always feel like I have to do something at home.  I make more money, but I pay more taxes, and there are no fun places to walk to lunch, so mostly I drink a can of V8 (which I hate) and a can of Slim Fast (which I hate more).  I do not feel that this routine has resulted in a smaller ass size, and now I resent the case of Slim Fast I bought at Costco.  (But at least I'm prepared for the zombie apocalypse.)

I love my apartment, but I don't love my ward.  (Sorry, ward.  It's not me, it's you.)  I love sleeping with my windows open in November, I hate that there's no snow.  

Being a lawyer is not at all what I thought it would be like.  And I was expecting it to not meet my expectations. 

I'm going back again in a few days for the TCU Blackout game and to hang out with my friends and family this weekend.  (Please don't rob my awesome apartment.)  I hope I'm less nostalgic, I hope I have some magic epiphany about what I need to do to get my life in order.  I hope we kick the hell out of TCU, and I have at least three excuses to put on a scarf. 

If any two of those things happens -- particularly the beating TCU part -- I will be completely content.  For at least another week. 

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Learn from my mistakes

When you volunteer to do things with crazy people, and you tell them you don't want your personal cell phone number given out to strangers all over the state, OF COURSE they will go ahead and give out your cell phone number.

And then blame it on some other crazy person. 

Monday, November 1, 2010

Come on, Gift Horse, open up ...: Addendum

I realized, thanks to a comment by Hula Buns and an email from the Mormon Child Bride, that I failed to fully explain the rest of my prom dress story.

First, I did get the dress back, and it is residing safely in my closet back at my parents' house.  I'm not sure why I'm saving it -- maybe someday I'll get really crafty and one-dress-a-day-it into a cute little cocktail number.  Maybe I'll try to force it on my daughter when she's of prom-going age.  (Hi, Lola!)

Second, the hideous t-shirt sleeves were not permanent.  It was a bolero, or little jacket, that was off-white and did not match the dress.  And unlike most hideous boleros which sport cap sleeves, this one had 3-Hanes-to-a-ziploc-bag length sleeves.  Ugh.

Now, given that the addition was not permanent, you might be wondering, "Well jeez, what's the big deal?"  Which brings me to my third, and really most insulting, point.

When the dress was returned, it was returned with the offensive bolero -- a not-so-subtle hint that perhaps I should think about covering my smutty little shoulders in the future.

Come on, Gift Horse, open up ...

Sometimes, you live to regret any nice thing you ever offer to do for anyone.

Right now, I am thinking of a pro bono project that I took on at work.  (Patience, saved drafts file ...)  But I'm also thinking of an incident that happened my freshman year of college.

I was off living in the dorms at the Blessed U, and my sister Echo was getting ready for prom.  She had a friend in her group who needed a dress.

Here's a weird thing about me - I am very "what's mine is yours" 95% of the time.  You want the shirt off my back?  Take it.  (But seriously, give me time to do some crunches before I have to walk home in my almost-altogether.)

Contrast this with Echo, who is 95% of the time "keep your filthy mitts off my stuff."  In fact, the vast majority of our fights growing up involved the fact that (A) we shared a room, (B) I was always willing to share with Echo, but she never wanted anything of mine, and (C) Echo was never willing to share with me, but I was always more impressed with her shirts than I was with my own.  (Now that we're grown ups, and live in different states, Echo is much more willing to lend out, and also much more impressed with my stuff acquisition abilities.  Ah, maturity.) 

But on this one occassion, because Echo's friend needed a dress, she finally wanted something of mine.  (Cue the Mr. Burns finger-tapping.) 

I went to my junior prom in what is probably the Top Three of Greatest Dresses I've Ever Worn.  (Top spot still reserved for Fantastic Boob Dress Tri Delt Formal Spring 2005.  I hope that's the dress I'm wearing in heaven.)  (Hey Tri Delts out there, do any of you have a picture of that dress?  I need proof of hotness for when I'm old.) 

Ahem.  Back to the prom dress. 

Unlike FBDTDFS05, the prom dress was super wholesome.  Think the dress on the left, cream and gold brocade, floor-length.  Yes, technically sleeveless, but a high boat neck and not particularly form-fitting.  I bought it because it made me feel like a seventeen-year-old Jackie Kennedy.

And Echo's friend had seen the Jackie O Prom Dress in my closet while Echo was trying on her slightly-less-wholesome-Scarlett-O'Hara-at-seventeen dress.  (Man, we had good taste in dresses.)

So Echo called me and asked if it would be okay if her friend wore my prom dress to their dance.

I'll be honest - I briefly hesitated.  At nineteen, that prom dress was the most expensive thing I'd ever bought, and yes, I knew it was unlikely I'd ever wear it again (although I did recycle it for one more Tri Delt formal), I was squeamish.  So Echo piled it on, explaining how her friend's parents couldn't afford to buy her a dress (I was less impressed there, since both Echo and I had to pay for our own prom dresses, but whatever), and please, please, please be a good Christian, okay?

So I relented and said of course her friend could wear my awesome dress to prom. 

Fast forward three weeks, when all the little Davis Darts get their dance picture packets delivered to 8th period.  I was home from college that weekend, and so I was there to see Echo's prom pictures. 

"Oh Echo, you look so prett ... what the hell did that girl do to my dress?"

Sitting on the far left of the photo was Echo's friend.

Wearing the awesome dress.

And some damn t-shirt.

"Oh ..." Echo said awkwardly.  "Um, her parents wouldn't let her wear a sleeveless dress.  So her mom made that for it."

Cue the slow burn.  "Why didn't she just give it back then?" I said through gritted teeth. 

Echo rolled her eyes.  "What does it even matter?"

"It matters because that dress is perfection, these people were too cheap to buy their kid her own dress, and they're judging me for owning a sleeveless dress by putting that hideous THING over it, and I was just trying to be a good CHRISTIAN, damn it!" I yelled.

"Dude, chill out," Echo replied calmly.  "Just be glad our parents never burkafied you for Prom."

Wiser words were never spoken.