Monday, August 28, 2006

Attention Italy Travelers...

I would love suggestions of things to do, places to eat and places to shop in Italy. Especially in Rome, Umbria and Tuscany. So, if you have been to Italy and know of a few good places, please comment. Especially you, Frank!

Friday, August 25, 2006

Get to Work

Well, I will "romp with joy in the bookish dark" yet again. I have been offered the job at the junior college and I have accepted. And I'm really excited about it. I'll be working in technical services in a behind-the-scenes job. It will be fun to learn some new skills and the library is brand new. It just opened last Monday. I officially start when I return from my honeymoon.

All my life I've been around books. My parents encouraged me to read and I spent many happy hours as a child organizing my "library." My first real job was at Barnes and Noble. Then, when my life took a turn after graduate school, I ended up at the public library. Although I was trying to focus my job search in California on non-profits, this particular job description intrigued me and I will now be in a library once again. But I love being around books. Secretly, I would love to have my own children's bookstore. It's hard to make a business like that profitable in this day and age. But I would love it.

I collect books on a small scale now. I try to get first/signed editions. But they have to be book I will read. My current hardcover library is somewhere in the region of 1200 books right now. Although, they are mostly in storage. I can't wait to get my books and my piano out of storage. Perhaps we'll find a house to rent by the end of the year so I can make that happen. Also, I'd love to have my mom and Gary's family come for Christmas. A real family Christmas! Wouldn't that be lovely?

Thursday, August 24, 2006

More Cowbell

I am embarrassed that I think this is so funny.

Follow the link and click once on Christopher Walken's picture. You can think make Will play the cowbell along to three song choices.

I've got a fever....give me more cowbell.

More Cowbell

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Malady Held Hostage, Day 3

Well, my interview on Friday went well. At least, I think it went well. The Dean told me I would hear something early this week. "Probably Monday." Well, it's Wednesday and I'm still waiting. And, as Tom Petty said, "waiting is the hardest part." I'm trying to stick around the house in case I get a call. In the meantime, I'm working on our Italian itinerary and thinking about what to pack. We leave on September 5. I'm looking forward to our honeymoon adventure!

Monday, August 21, 2006

A Room with a View

I began my love affair with Italy in my teenage years. I'm not sure exactly where it began. I suspect E.M. Forster and Merchant Ivory had something to do with it. I can remember sitting in my friend Maya's room watching "A Room with a View." I think many of my romantic sensibilities were formed in that moment. Maya and I believed that the only worthwhile films were foreign ones. So, we limited ourselves to movies in the "Foreign Film" section at the video store. (English films counted, of course) We went through every Merchant Ivory film that we could find. Julian Sands, Kenneth Branagh, and Hugh Grant were two of our favorite actors. But there was something about "A Room with a View" in particular. Finding true love in a field of barley and poppies on a hillside outside of Florence. And then came Branagh's "Much Ado About Nothing." My favorite of all Shakespeare's plays. I saw myself as Beatrice and wondered when I would find my Benedick. And it was set in Italy. Maya and I eventually headed to Italy when we were eighteen. In Florence, we acted out the scene from "A Room with View" in Santa Croce. And we pretended to fling postcards into the Arno. And we saw lots of barley and sunflower fields. But no Julian Sands-like love interest.

Well, many years later, I am returning to Italy. My wedding was inspired by the wedding scene in "Much Ado About Nothing." Full of sunflowers and ribbons and attempts to recreate Italian countryside. And I've finally found my Benedick. Who loves to engage me in a battle of wits but loves me like no other and allows me to be myself. And he is taking me to Italy for our honeymoon. And we will spend one night in the hotel where "A Room with a View" was filmed. Lucy and George will return to Florence in the guise of Amy and Gary. I can hardly wait.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

A Job?

Well, I interviewed for a position at a nearby Junior College library on Tuesday. I didn't feel that I did very well. The interview part went all right even though I had to keep saying that I didn't have "specific working experience in that area." After the interview, they had me take a skills test and I think I did poorly on it. They gave me an empty catalog record and asked me to identify certain numbered fields. That is exactly where I don't have a lot of knowledge. I left thinking the whole experience was over.

This morning, I found out I got a second interview. Tomorrow. I can't believe it. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

The Librarian

Okay, this is really embarrassing to reveal...but I have really been enjoying the cheesy reality show "Who Wants to be a Superhero?" It is so silly but so fun. And I find it laugh-out-loud funny. I have become enamored of Major Victory with his catchphrase "Be a winner, not a wiener." He really hams it up. And I love seeing how the superhero wannabes respond to the various challenges. And, when they fail, they must put their costumes into a trashcan to be incinerated by a lightning bolt. Cheesy good fun!

I told Gary that if I were on the show, I would be the Librarian. (or...the Bibliophile) My superpower would be to have the ability to recommend a book for any occasion or need. I would carry information on the Dewey Decimal System with me as well as some paper and a pen to write down recommendations. It would be all about access to information! And, instead of going from a "Clark Kent" secret identity to a spandex suit with a cape, I would go from normal street clothes to a skirt suit and heels with my hair in a french twist and glasses. Woo hoo!

I told Gary he could be Dictionary Man. He would carry a small dictionary on his utility belt along with a magnifying glass for seeing the small words. A word for every occasion!

What superhero would you be?

Monday, August 14, 2006

A New Trend in Concerts

Well, we had a good time at the Death Cab for Cutie concert. It was a great show. We did note a new trend, however, that made us laugh.

In California, you don't see a lot of smokers anymore. A lot of towns are smoke-free. And with the whole "healthy-living" kick, the only people who seem to smoke are models and movie stars.

Well, at the concert, we noticed a handful of puffs of smoke rising above the crowd. But, of course, those were the marijuana partakers. So, when the inevitable moment came that the band struck up a moving song that at any other time would ignite hundreds of lighters....well...there really weren't hundreds of lighters. Because people don't smoke. So, instead of hordes of little flames throughout the crowd, we saw...cell phones. People were flipping open their phones so they would light up and holding the cell phones up as they swayed.

Wow. The time are a-changin'. I've never been a smoker but I always enjoyed those moments in the dark at a concert surrounded by little flames. Waving cell phones just aren't the same thing.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Concert Etc

Gary and I are started to set up our household together. We're changing our insurance, setting up a joint account, looking into life insurance, planning a possible move into a larger place. All the little things you do when starting a life with someone.

After losing our friend Raj (R.G.) a few weeks ago, we started to re-evaluate certain things. Gary is thinking seriously about getting his real estate license. And we are thinking about estate planning. Raj had a very moving funeral and memorial service. There were about 700 people at the memorial service. You could really see the legacy he left behind. He touched the lives of so many people. And it made me think about what (if anything) that I will leave behind. And about making plans for my funeral.

I lost my father very unexpectedly when I was 24. He was walking across a street and was hit and killed by a courier van. You just never know how much time you have left. So, you have to make every second count.

In other news, Gary and I are going to see Death Cab for Cutie tonight. It's going to be a busy weekend. I have a Junior League service project tomorrow and then we are going on a local Heritage Home tour on Sunday. Busy busy!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

The Happy Housewife

I just started reading Caitlin Flanagan's new book To Hell with All That: Loving and Loathing Our Inner Housewife. Flanagan has some interesting (and un-popular) opinions about domestic life in the post-feminist world. And a lot of it is very interesting. In the last forty-odd years, women have made incredible strides. We have more choice than we ever have before. And, if you have been reading my blog for awhile, you know that I have been very interested in the concept of "choice" for awhile. It sometimes seemed we are burdened by the endless array of choices we have. And now you often see women who just want to return to domestic life. There seems to be a movement in that direction.

For all intents and purposes, I have been a housewife since February. And while I am anxious to go back to work, part-time work is seeming more and more attractive. I'm not a particularly good housewife. My mom made it seem so effortless. And then there are those examples set by Martha Stewart and even Bree on Desperate Housewives. No matter how hard I try, I can never seem to run the flawlessly well-organized home that these women like my mom did.But there is something very appealing about all of that. I imagine even more so when you have kids. It has got me thinking a lot about the changing roles of women and the home.

Saturday, August 05, 2006


We got a first glimpse of our wedding photos yesterday. There are a lot of good ones but overall I was a little disappointed. It's hard to capture all of the moments that you want to. There is some pressure because you only get one chance. We are missing quite a few important moments. And it is also hard because you realize after all of that work and a year of planning, it's all over in the blink of an eye. And then you experience the post-wedding blahs. All the fun and excitement is over. That isn't to say that I don't enjoy every moment of my new life with Gary. It's fun setting up house and getting used to being a married couple. And we always find fun things to do together. There is just a big letdown for everyone involved once the big event is over. And the pictures didn't do it justice.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006


Gary and I just went to see the new Woody Allen movie "Scoop." While we were in the movie, I experienced my first earthquake. The epicenter was fairly close to my home. It was a 4.4 earthquake with no reported damage or injuries. But what a weird sensation! It felt like the movie theater was on top of a subway and a train was going through it. Or some ride at Disneyland. It didn't last for very long and only two people left the theater. The walls swayed a little bit and then that was it. The movie didn't even stop.