Monday, September 10, 2012

some days

There are days when I really love living downtown.  I like being able to walk or take the bus everywhere, being able to just run across town for a drink with friends at a new restaurant.  There's so much to love about being in a city.

But sometimes, there's so much to hate about being female and in a city too.

Sometimes, there are days when Philly just does not win me over.

Sometimes, I'm waiting for a train, by myself, on a mostly empty platform, just trying to read my current issue of Time and get where I need to go.  And I'm interrupted by "Miss, how are you miss?"  Followed by, "So whatcha reading, hmm?" and "You know, you'd look really pretty with a smile on your face."

Really, I'd like to tell him to leave me the hell alone.  But because I don't like to engage with men I don't know when I'm waiting on a train platform all by myself -- and I especially don't like it when they start to get in my personal space -- I take a step away and ask, "Do you need something?"

Which then prompts a very angry, "I was just saying how are you."

"I'm fine." And I go back to reading my magazine.

And the eventual outcome -- several more minutes of attempted ignoring later -- is that I'm yelled at for being racist.  And I want to yell back, No you asshole, I'm not refusing to engage with you because of your skin color, I'm refusing to engage with you because you are strange man getting in my personal space while I'm all alone underground and I care more about my safety than about your pathetic ego.

And then sometimes, there's the trip home, going the other direction.

I'm sharing the platform this time with Genuine Crazy Man who keeps talking about about "I'm Marvelous Mick" and "I'm Benny the Bum" and literally yelling "HA HA HA" like a demented Santa Clause. 

But you know, that I can deal with.  Genuine Crazy Men are everywhere in the city, and usually I can just ignore them.  But when I'm all alone and he starts getting closer and closer to me and instead of talking about Mick and Benny, he starts talking about "the pretty little girl in the blue dress" (which is, of course, what I'm wearing) and goes on to start describing in detail exactly what he's going to put where and how much the pretty little girl is going to enjoy that...

Well, then, even though there are other people on the platform this time, I get the hell out of there an walk the half mile to the trolly instead.  And then I get home and curl up on the couch and cry to Brian, and he looks miserable because he knows this is something he will never actually see --  it does not happen when there's a man around, of course -- and can never prevent it from happening to me.

And I just have to give up on people for the day and hope that tomorrow will be better.

Edit: Schrodinger's Rapist.  The post says it all.

Thursday, September 6, 2012



People people people people.

I cannot even make words right now.

Ye Olde Gatling Gunnes.  And medieval missing persons posters.  And witches with flame throwers.  And and and and.

It's like Van Helsing on a drug trip.  I should not be this entertained.  But I am.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

looking back on year one

Brian and I celebrated our first anniversary at the end of last month (how has it been a year already???) so I thought I would steal an idea from Cat at Budget Blonde and do a little Year 1 retrospective.

Where we live: PA
Number of moves: only 1!  2012 is now the first year neither of us has moved since we were 18.
Months of unemployment: None!  A happy change from my first year in Phila.
Years of grad school: Brian finished his third year in the spring and is now officially a PhD candidate with a dissertation in the works.
Travel: a few night bed & breakfasting it for our honeymoon; periodic Megabus trips down to DC to see friends and family; Williamsburg for friends' wedding in September; Thanksgiving with my parents; Christmas with first Brian's parents and then mine; NYE in DC; Brian went to the beach (but I had to stay here and work... sadface); Brian had a math workshop for two weeks in Berkley; WV for my brother's wedding (amazing fancy week that my parents helped treat us to as an anniversary present) followed by 4 nights in VA with Brian's parents... apparently we travel a lot. 
First big purchase: We opened two IRA's!  One for each of us.  That was probably the biggest chunk of money in any one place that wasn't rent.  Aren't we responsible (boring) folk?
Rooms decorated: 4(ish): living room, bedroom, bathroom, kitchen.  All the rooms we have got furniture and some personality.  None of them are (to my mind) finished.
Trips to IKEA: Probably too many. 
Where we spend more than we should: Brian's vice is eating out. Mine is shoes.  We're both trying to do better.
# of credit cards completely paid off: Both of them every month.  We have one each, and we always pay off the balance.

Most expensive month of year 1: Probably December.  We went a little overboard with Christmas gifts this year.
I quit one job, and hard as it was, I know it was the right decision.
I performed in one opera, four plays, and a movie.
Brian took and aced his oral exams.
And I made sure he went to the dentist for the first time in two years.  (We use Groupon and LivingSocial for that since we don't have dental insurance.)
I had my yearly injury in February, a damaged tendon in my foot, that was doing better for a while but is getting cranky again this month.  And I had Schuykill Plague in September.
We did not buy our first Christmas tree.  =(
Number of arguments: not too many.  We have long pre-argument discussion generally.  Though that means when we get to the arguing stage... it's bad.
#1 topic argued about: Miscommunications.  Seriously.  Usually when we argue we discover that we actually meant the same thing, we were just saying it completely differently.
Number of overnight guests: Five!  My mother, then Brian's mom and her neighbor, then Josh & Mike.
Favorite gifts from hubby this year: The start of my nativity set.  I'm so excited to have my own!
Favorite gift to hubs from me: He loves his netbook.
Number of pounds I gained since the wedding: Gained five... lost seven... gained three... lost three... gained four... lost... something.  I don't know.  We don't have a scale.  I think it all evened out.
New recipes we love: Brian's chicken parm; my Brunswick stew; cajun red beans and rice with peppers
We spent most of the summer sleeping on the pull out bed in our living room so we could be in front of the AC unit.
We had kittens for two weeks.
We started running together, because neither of us like it, so the only way to get it done it through competition.
Number of times I got up hours before Brian: about 80%
Number of times he came to bed hours after me: about 60%
Number of days we said I love you: All of them

Monday, May 28, 2012

always in our hearts

With gratitude and love.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

The courtyard behind our apartment building (or really, between it and another building) makes a really great place to sit outside and write on pretty days.  It's shady and cool, and a lot of the traffic noise is blocked by the buildings.

It's very pretty...

if you ignore the pile of trash that accumulates at one end.

Well, we live in the middle of the city.  Can't have everything.

(Now, if only I weren't 10,000 words behind schedule.  It's a self-imposed schedule, true, but still.  Five days of persistent headache is not so conducive to spending lots of non-work time on the computer.) 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

i found the key to the garden!

Longwood Gardens is one of my favorite day trips outside the city.  It's stunningly beautiful, and I love the history associated with it.  Plus... it lends itself to some really nice daydreams along the lines of, "If we were independently wealthy..."  Le sigh.

The other week, while Brian's mom and her neighbor Betty Marie were visiting, we decided to treat them to a day in the gardens for Mothers' Day.

Brian with his mom Mary Ann

I only really remember to take photos for the first hour, so I tried to get pictures of everyone right away.

I really love all the different types of gardens -- this is the Wisteria Walk.

View from the Canopy Cathedral Treehouse.  Wouldn't you love to have this as your backyard?


Italian Water Gardens.  Possibly my favorite part of Longwood.  Unfortunately, this is as close as you can get to them.  =(

The first room of the greenhouse, which is so big that we literally got lost in it.  Gorgeous.

Bird of Paradise.  I love weird plants.

 I went a little crazy over the Bonsai exhibit.  I think this was justified.  Those things are over a hundred years old.

Betty Marie in the Waterfall Room.

Brian has strange ideas about what makes good picture framing...


But he's very entertaining in the Topiary Garden, so I think I'll keep him around.

Sometimes it's just really nice to get out of the city for a day, even if it it cloudy and drizzly the whole time.  And see how nice it is here?  You should come visit.  Yes, you.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

day 2 of life with kitties

 In which Brian cuddles everyone to sleep.

I've long suspected he has some sort of magical sleep pheromone that he uses on me.  It's now been confirmed to work on cats as well.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed for it working on babies a few years down the line too.