Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Italian Wedding Soup

Here's a good recipe for dealing with that leftover turkey carcass. Make some stock (you do know how to make stock, don't you?) and some delicious soup.


For Meatballs:

1 small yellow onion
1/3 cup parsley
1 large egg
1 tsp. garlic (I tripled this)
1 tsp salt
1/4 baguette
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
16-oz of beef (I used 12 and there was plenty. You could probably do this with ground turkey too)
pepper

You can chop everything very finely, OR, you can go the easier route, which is to do everything in a Cuisinart. First, process the baguette until very fine. Set crumbs aside. Cut onion into four pieces, discarding skin, and pulse in Cuisinart until a pulp. Add parsley, salt and pepper, parmesan and garlic and pulse until a paste. Add beef and egg and breadcrumbs and pulse until just mixed.

Using a teaspoon, form meatballs the size of a dime (they’ll start this small and end up quarter sized, but it happens to everyone). Put formed meatballs on a cookie sheet or plate.

For soup:
10- 12 cups chicken stock or broth
1 lb. spinach or escarole
1 can cannelloni beans
1/4 lb Acini de Pepe (pasta that looks like cous cous, but you can use whatever kind you like)
2 eggs
2 Tbs parmesan
salt and pepper

Bring stock to boil and add meatballs and spinach. Allow to cook through, about 10 minutes.

While waiting for meatballs to cook, boil pasta in separate pot. Drain and set aside.

Whisk parmesan and eggs together very thoroughly. Stirring whole pot in a gentle, continuous circular motion, drizzle egg slowly into briskly boiling broth, just like with egg drop soup. This will make the soup really rich. Now add your drained beans and pasta.

Sprinkle with more parmesan if you have it and season with salt and pepper to taste. Eat!

Footnote of Horror

Our turkey cost $64. SIXTY-FOUR, PEOPLE! That'll teach me to order without checking the price first. Christ. It must be free range, massaged by 4-H children, snuffed by Buddhists, plucked by fairy seamstresses...

Is everything more expensive in California, or is it just me?

Synopses

I have: a very annoying cough that makes me wake up 6000 times a night feeling like I am choking. Great.

I forgot: that Sunday was my parents' FORTIETH anniversary! Apparently it was quite a knock down drag out affair, since Mom sounded extremely bilious following the nine course meal and six bottles of wine + port. Ugh, port always sneaks up while I'm lying moaning in the gutter, smirks at me and then kicks me in the head. That's just the kind of guy he is. Anyway, M&D, thanks for making me legitimate lo those many years ago!

This weekend: was the best one yet in our new city. Simons had a friend from NY staying with us this weekend, and Sunday we took him with some other fun happy people to Marin to Joe's Taco Lounge for beer and tacos and more beer. And when we were swollen, we went on a "hike" that ended in this valley at an adorable beer garden called the German Tourist Club, which is kind of secret and hard to find. It is surrounded by porches and redwoods and mountains and has a wood burning stove inside and German-type stuff everywhere. We drank beer. Lots of beer. Good beer. Pitchers of the stuff. It was frothy and delicious and had names with lots of Zs and came in cold glasses. And we sat outside and looked up at Mt Tam and played dominoes in a golden hazy stupor drinking lots until it got very suddenly dark and we had to hike back UP the mountain the way we came. That was harder and less golden.

And because the haze was starting to grow stark edges, we went to a bar to see a friend's friend's band play and drank more beer. And then we went back to the city for very large famous cheeseburgers and drank more beer. Only that beer, I couldn't drink. No one else wanted it either. I tried.

I am: excited, because Amanda, the lacto ovo pescetarian arrives to play and frolic and galavant! Huzzah! She's given me permission to leave off the tofurkey, which is great. Faux turkey thighs are disturbing. But I have a whole four days of grand adventure planned. After dinner on thursday, we're going to the Tonga Room (does Polynesian desk dance), where they serve mai tais and the band plays on a boat in the middle of a lake inside the bar. And it rains every 30 minutes. And we're going wine tasting (cheap fun), chocolate touring (Scharfenberger...say it with me), to a bluegrass concert, to lick everything in the Apple store, to the de Young museum, and to eat in many fabulous locales. God, I can't wait.

I never: thought I'd see the day that it's warmer in San Francisco than in Charleston. My dad wrote to tell me that it's snowing, which put the dog in a bad mood. I'm surprised she even noticed with her giant grinchy feet.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Nob Hill sucks...

...for running.

After sitting in front of my computer all day yesterday, I finally grew disgusted enough with myself to put on my running shoes and leave the house. I mean, REALLY, how many days can I chastise myself for not being healthier before doing something about it? Apparently a lot. But my GOD, THE HILLS! I made it up about six of them before I had to walk at this park at Larkin and Lombard streets. So many stairs... I think I scared an old Asian lady running up behind her with all of my heavy breathing.

Anyway, I trotted down Polk Street and around on Hyde, and discovered that the tiny bistro right around the corner was celebrating the Beaujolais Nouveau with live music and French decor and heavenly smells. So after going home and torturing myself with a full ten minutes of my core fitness DVD (no worries about it getting scratched in the move, since it had NEVER BEEN OPENED), Dog and I went to meet Simons at the cablecar and demanded some wine and bistro food.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I actually took a shower, put on makeup and nice shoes! No sweatpants, I swear! And there was the cutest old geezer with his beret and accordion, and straw on the floor, a funny waiter, and the wine wasn't too bad either. I had the caramelized onion tart with a tiny bitter green salad and then the duck confit with tiny potatoes and shittake mushrooms. We haven't really been out in so long, and it was definitely worth it. Plus, we've discovered they have serious specials before seven.

So it's almost thanksgiving, which means a) my friend the lacto pescetarian is coming to visit, so I need to get a tofurkey, and b) I am running out of time for my wedding thank you notes. God, I'm the worst bride ever. It's been six months and I've barely started. So today and this weekend, I plan to write so many, my hand claws up. Do you think people will forgive me?

Thursday, November 16, 2006

I love

Simons, burnt orange, making lists, red shoes, boarding school, Grace Kelly dresses, finishing an essay, sweet potatoes, my surfboard, bookstores, cast nets, my dad’s stories, pie, feather beds, bonfires, books on tape, direct deposit, bluegrass, cheese, invitations to parties, my iPod, R-4 jackets, Mac LipGlass in Love Child, finishing a race, the word “jams,” British humor, black licorice, Phyto, brainstorming, Apple, more cowbell, David Sedaris, funny cards, hot dogs, The New York Times Travel section, Moïse Island, Beck, libraries, buying plane tickets, leather couches, long-sleeve T-shirts, my mom's creativity, babies, ruins, thunderstorms, old dogs, pretty boys with ink, my Portastatic shirt, John Turturro, banjoes, camping, sweet architecture, baseball games, when people explain things without making me feel stupid, Earl Grey tea, unlined journals, lavender, Anne Taintor, my fig tree (Newton), a big rock with a lot of holds, Wickles, my old pair of Asics racing shoes, having coffee made for me, Aveda products, winter marshes, zombie cheerleaders, Literary Addict’s voice, sunbleached hair, tissues with lotion, tired dogs, deserted beaches, fine stationery, Basque Coast, the woods in early morning, making fun of people, mustard, when Simons speaks French to the dog, making soup, my dentist, reading in the same room as someone else who is also reading, Christmas cards, theatres, Ella Fitzgerald, having my hair pulled, roses that smell, Sap Moss shampoo, Deerfields, driving in the mountains, Cote du Rhone reds, my Nikon-F, Xanax, fireworks, Liz Phair, Simons’ laugh, letters from old friends, Café Verona, fat horses, tweed, bodice rippers with a bubble bath, Kieslowski’s Red-White-Blue, silver cuff bracelets, puppy breath, sleeveless turtleneck sweaters, linen pajamas, the Clinton administration, my mom’s grilled cheese sandwiches, Mexican omelets, planning parties, making ravioli.

I Hate

Aw Puddin, speaker phone, blue flashing lights, unexpected car maintenance, Sunday nights, achy knees, barfing, cat allergies, the inability to barter, hotel art, typos, group work, cucumbers, sinus infections, January, halitosis, work travel, getting caught singing, culottes, “You Are Overdrawn,” writer’s block, long voicemail messages, jello salad, people with no thigh friction, feeling needy, writing thank you notes, confrontation, drivers who lean when turning, pantyhose, Change, parking tickets, losing bets, spiders, parking, inertia.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

stuff

This is not going to be a very intelligent post. I'm tired. The damned dog had her pain medication patch removed yesterday and was very uncomfortable all night and kept bashing her bucket into the side of the bed. I finally got up, dragged her out of the bedroom and up on the couch with me and we slept from about 2:30 til 5, when I had to get up to work. Oy. I need a nap. But poor damned dog, I think she just wanted some comforting.

So last night I was feeling pretty pent up from being inside all day, and by the time Simons got home, I'd worked myself into a claustrophobic headache. Normally I really love to cook, so I could tell it was my bad mood talking when Simons asked what was for dinner and I fed him his liver raw.

Actually, I just gave him the flounder eye and instructed him in the fine art of "doing it your own damned self" before hying myself off to knitting. Boy was I glad that I did. First of all, unbeknownst to me, it must have been cupcake night, because there were about 15 different kind, four varieties with cream cheese frosting. Heaven!

Then it was also yarn swap night. See what a nerd I am. Still, yarn is expensive stuff, and I got enough to make two sweaters for free. Who wants a hot pink mohair sweater? No? I have apple green too. No one? Hmph.

And I met a new friend, who has the same last name as me, knits also, obviously, and is from Australia. We're going for lunch this week. I feel like a new kid in the cafeteria, but I figured that since I've forgotten any sort of finesse in the art of making friends, I'm just going to have to take the direct approach. "You wanna?"

I wish I could say that I came home and Simons had a hot dinner waiting, because after AN HOUR of driving in circles in the driving rain looking for parking, I was tired and starving. Instead, I came home to find a smug Simons who had ventured to the corner store to find a TASTING on olives and cheese. God, I could have killed him. He should have called me back from cupcakeland for that! Mmmm...cheese. But he had bought some fine wine and all the ingredients I asked him to for Italian Wedding Soup, which we will have tonight (hmmm, I should start making the meatballs). Since it was so late, we ate salmon melts and tomato soup and watched The Life Aquatic. That Bill Murray. He's fabulous.

Anyway, today was sunny again and lovely. And I had a job interview this afternoon for this enormously successful and famous entrepreneur. In a way, it was probably good that I didn't research him until this morning, because I would have worked myself into a complete lather. So it was an interesting interview, and the man is a complete kook. We sat on the floor and talked about swimming with dolphins and movies and business, etc. I think it went okay, and I'm imminently qualified to do what he needs. But I'm a little reluctant to take on full time work, even if it is writing. I like the idea of true freelancing, when your schedule is your own and you have to be self disciplined. Still, it would be a fascinating job.

Mph, maybe I just won't get it and the decision will be made for me.

Tomorrow, I'm taking the ferry to Sausalito!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Hot Pants and a Bra

Today was spent in recovery, thanks to a few too many Stolis at a friend’s birthday party. Mmmm…Stoli. So delicious.

This particular party was held at Swig. The last one she had was at a bar called Sip.

More like Guzzle if you ask me.

I was having an interesting conversation with a lawyer freshly transplanted from Manhattan. Evidently she had met a few friends at her new dance class. Impressed, since I tend to hurt myself doing choreographed dance routines, I asked what kind. She said that normally she does ballet, but this particular class is pole dancing.

(!!!)

This was the basis for a fascinating discussion on what one wears to a pole dancing class (see title), how many bored housewives are taking it, and whether she gets a lot of dates with her newfound talent. The latter proved not to be true, although she had high hopes from placing her pole dancing credentials on Match.com.

God, I’m so glad I’m not dating in this town. Can you imagine? I’d be like the old maid profile, gathering dust in the uber lame section of the Internet.

“Single white female. Rather large bottom. Likes to knit. Has dog with a bucket.”

Meeeow!

***
So in other news, directly related to future ruminations about such things as pole dancing, I evidently have some new readers.

Momma, Daddy, welcome to my blog.

Now, I’ve of a couple of minds about this. These might be better explained by relating the conversation I had with my dad where he announced his membership to the Jemima Fanclub.

[wavy glow of flashback, scene cuts to Simons driving the Subaru out to Half Moon Bay. Jemima speaks on the phone with her dad]

Jemima: “blah, blah, blah…oysters across state lines…blah blah”

Daddy: “Oh by the way, I was at the white anglo saxon male watering hole/the Yacht Club last night, and someone told me that you had a blog.”

(male shriek of alarm as the sudden vacuum created inside the car makes Simons drive off the road and run over an old homeless lady)

Jemima: [weakly] Oh?

Daddy: “Yes! And they explained what that was, and so Momma and I have been reading it and we just love it.”

Jemima: [taking mental tally of number of F-bombs, merdes, ungrateful daughter postings, blatant lies, partial untruths, crazed hormonal posts, totally fabricated insinuations of carnal knowledge of aforementioned husband] “Oh...God.”

Daddy: “I was reading all of the comments. Does your sister read your blog? Someone posted under ‘WSS’ and it sounded just like her.”

Jemima: “Erk.” [pounds the gloating Simons with fists of impotent rage] “Yes, WSS is Wicked Step Sister.”

Daddy: “Well have fun at the beach. Tata.”

(Simons just begged me to erase the carnal part of that last bit)

So now I’ve been deliberating whether or not I ought to self censor a bit. Most of my friends who blog know that their families read their posts, and have made an effort to curb the swearing. And I don’t suppose it would hurt to do that. I’m not used to having to think about it. Simons knows what my blog is but won’t read it on principle. I keep telling him I mostly post NICE things about him…

Anyway, I worry more about hurting someone’s feelings by publishing my private and often transitory feelings about certain things in a public forum. Oh well, Dooce has been dealing with that for six years now. If it happens, it happens.

What else concerns me about this is that usually when someone blogs under a different name, it generally means that he or she would prefer that readers not blow their cover at public events. It’s just good manners not to. So who exactly spilled the beans? And why did he think it was a good idea? And who else is bandying my name about?

I was deliberating over this ad nauseum with Simons tonight and he said, “Just talk about douching and brassieres and everyone will quit reading it.”

And I said, “Yeah, including me. I could talk about sex with you once and my parents would definitely quit.”

Then he yelled “NO!” so loud, his head blew off and made a mess and I had to go fetch paper towels and a soothing morphine drip.

So, now that the initial shock and mortification and panic have exhausted themselves, and the beer has kicked in, I can’t say I’m all that upset about it. I shall continue as I started, and will trust to everyone’s sense of humor to get by.

And if all else fails, there’s always the douching.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggety Jig

Posted later from Nook

I’m sitting here in my kitchen, regrettably with no internet access, as the connection I’ve been poaching since we moved decided to shut down TODAY, today being the first day of the longterm freelance writing gig. I had to race urgently around to the uber cool coffee shop/wine bar around the corner at 6:45 this morning in order to get my work done, which necessitated the purchase of three large lattes in order to keep my table. Not only expensive, but also I’m beyond jittery.

And THEN, after emailing the NY woman all the newsletter items, plus fulfilling about six extra tasks today, I called to see if there was anything else I could do before leaving the shop…AND THE WOMAN YELLED AT ME!

Here is how this conversation went:

Her: “WHAT DO YOU WANT?”

Me: “Oh, um, sorry to bother you. I just wanted to see if you received my emails.”

Her: “I DON’T HAVE TIME TO READ YOUR EMAILS. I’M DOING THE MEDIA MONITORING.”

Me: (after this opener, wishing I could just let her check her email after duplicating all of my work, ie wasting her time) “Actually, I’ve finished all that and emailed it to you but I wasn’t sure of the formatting.”

Her: “Oh, well, did you do the items I assigned you?” [said in a really really exasperated voice.]

Me: “Yes, I’ve emailed that to you as well.”

Her: “I’ve gotta go.”

So, is she pleased that I’ve done all her work for her? Is she at all appreciative? What the hell is her problem? I was so embarrassed by this belittlement, I was actually blushing all the way across the country. So now I’m all paranoid that she’s developed an aversion to the sound of my voice and will fire me. Great.

Still, today is a fabulous day, because…

MISS BEULAH HAS COME HOME!

She’s lying beside me with a new and quite feminine looking bucket on her head, waiting for her chicken and rice to finish cooking. Her whole belly is shaved, which must be quite chilly, and her surgical scar is about 8 inches long and quite gruesome. But it’s so nice to hear her jingly collar and to be able to look down at her pretty golden eyes when I’m working.

They never did find the veritable toy chest they removed from her belly and set aside for me, which is sad. I’m dying of curiosity to see what they looked like. Apparently the ball was actually a doll head stuck in there. Man, that would have been the best bell jar mantelpiece display EVER.

It’s going to be a rough two weeks for her, since she can’t move around much and can only have a tiny bit of food at a time, and that not very often. But she’s on the mend, and I really appreciate all your kind words, prayers, thoughts, karma, etc.

The vet bill did end up being quite a lot, although not the full $5000, thanks to her speedy recovery after the surgery (Good Dog!). She’s actually home two days earlier than expected. But all in all, it’s more than we can afford--$3297.50, and I couldn’t believe our credit card didn’t go up in smoke when the vet swiped it. If anyone still is interested in contributing to the Beulah’s Toychest fund (it was going to be the Save Beulah Fund, but she’s already made it, so that didn’t make any sense), I’ve set up a PayPal account here.

I really struggled with doing this, since I feel like we adopted her, so we should take full responsibility. But to be honest, I really don’t have the luxury of protesting.

Instead, I’ll just be really and truly grateful for any help my blog friends and readers can offer. I’m completely overwhelmed with all of the kind comments and emails.

So…thank you. From the bottom of my heart, and from the depths of my dog’s bucket, thank you.

-J

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

BEULAH LIVES

Dear Mom,

Why did you leave me here with the vet? I am sad. Yesterday they stole my ball and duck. To get even, I puked on the vet. I am crafty.


But today you visited me and washed my face and scratched my nose, which was nice. And you fed me chicken and rice (but not enough). That was nice too.



But then you left.



I am sad.


Promise you'll bring me home tomorrow? I'll be a good dog.

No more puking.

Love Beulah

PS: Please thank all the very nice people who crossed their paws for me. I'm sure it was their prayers that got me through.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Tale of Woe and Ducks

Okay, so I finally found a vet who would see Beulah today, as an emergency (read "expensive") patient. The vet said she was critically dehydrated and was very concerned about her constant vomiting. The previous owner just told us she had a sensitive stomach, so we have never thought all that much of it. Anyway, this vet gave me a list of necessary procedures for DIAGNOSING Beulah's illness, which came to a grand total of $1600 for x-rays, blood tests, intravenous fluids, and an overnight stay. That didn't even include whatever it took to cure her.

After having a stroke, I agreed and said I would stay for the x-ray results.

I must say that even I, who do not have a vet degree, looked at the x-ray and said, "Is that a freaking bouncy ball?"

Yes. A bouncy ball.

We do not give our dog bouncy balls to play with. This ball has been in her stomach for at least a year, and was the child's toy of the family where she lived before. Also, the stomach appeared to have grown in a weird manner to accommodate this little lump of plastic, filled with sparkly foil, all of which showed up in the films, which will probably necessitate reconstructive surgery in that location. But worse than the bouncy ball was a brightly lit loop of intestine that was in the wrong place. The vet had no explanation for that. Beulah also has jaundice, pneumonia and increased liver enzymes, all from puking.

We scheduled her to go to the surgical specialist across town, and I sat in the room and cried and tracked down Simons and dragged him out of a meeting, and called our vet at home and cried to him too. Then the doctor came back looking perplexed.

"Have you been missing a duck?"

A what?

Apparently the bizarre and mystical loop of intestine...it was a duck. A little rubber one she was playing with at our friends' house in Nashville when we passed through on our cross country move.

The goddamned dog ate the duck.

So she has TWO foreign objects in her stomach, and no wonder the poor animal is sick all the time. This could be a whole new lease on life for the wretched vomitorium.

The scary part is that the surgery will cost $5000. Yes, $5000 for Beulah Buckethead Devil Dog. We don't actually HAVE $5000, which is worrisome, but we'll have to figure that out later. Because she may be a pain in the ass, but she's OUR pain in the ass and we love her.

So here's my question. Should I make them return the ball and the duck?

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Sick Baby- Warning, tales of barf to follow

As much as I curse this dog we adopted, we really do love her. And it never shows as much as when she is really and truly sick. Poor Dog woke me up very early this morning with a serious anxious pacing that could only mean that she needed to go OUT. Bad.

So out we went, and the poor beast decorated the sidewalks around two city blocks, chucking up everything she's ever eaten. Now the dog generally barfs after she eats, but this desperate, continuous sort of puking was something new entirely.

She seemed much better afterwards (aren't we all), and by this afternoon, we thought she seemed well enough for a trip to the beach. After a jolly romp and some swimming and digging and ball throwing, she suddenly freaked and dashed up the beach and barfed up her entire breakfast. And we took her home and made much over her and even offered her chicken soup (which she is not normally allowed to eat, but they always say chicken broth is easy on the stomach). We knew when she refused my 12-hour chicken stock that she was probably on death's door. After a safe amount of time and piteous glances, we let her out of the safe kitchen zone with its easy to sterilize hardwood floors and she climbed up on the couch for cuddling. Thirty minutes later, she projectile vomited all the water she'd drunk since the beach. Simons has been holding her ears for her, and I keep wiping her mouth with fresh paper towels, but we're both really at a loss.

Her general disposition, plus her syptoms, have lead my online research to suggest she has some foreign body in her stomach. It could have been there for years and only now have caused problems. Or it could be one of 15 toothbrushes she's eaten since February.

We just signed up for pet insurance, and the policy doesn't cover illness for thirty days, but does cover accidents. So does eating a foreign body count as accident or as illness? I guess accident means injury rather than projectile barfing. What if we maybe say that a homeless person fed her a toothbrush. Then is it an accident?

Christ, I want our dog well, but considering how much equipment and procedures and diagnosis and medication last month's UTI cost, I'm really wondering how we can afford potential stomach surgery. Because judging by the vet's insistence on an ultrasound for some urinary crystal buildup, she's going to insist on about 65 pieces of machinery for this.

Damn. Damn. Damn.

What do parents of children do? Same thing...know you have to take them but dread the emergency room visits?

Friday, November 03, 2006

Camping Photographs

I finally added a Flickr link, which I'm not too sure about. Let me know if you think it's irritating, and I'll switch it to a stationary link.

Here are some pictures from our camping trip to Rock Lake near Tahoe/Graeagle. The lake was so smooth and calm, and apparently full of trout. We're determined to bring some fly rods with us next time. This is the morning after a very rocky (pun fully intended) night, with the dogs hogging the tent and me freezing my butt off, and my old old old bones creaking. Fortunately, Simons makes great coffee, even if it's in a rock kitchen. Here's me letting Beulah finish off my oatmeal and savoring my morning beverage.



As I mentioned, we got a late start and it was nearly dark by the time we found a good tent site. We realized the next morning that the tree over our tent was covered in bear claw marks and was dripping with sap.



Sunday we took a great hike to the top of the far ridge and looked down on our campsite and Rock Lake. Beulah was having a fine time, gambolling in the shrubbery and making a lot of noise with her bear bell. God, I hate that bell.



Here is the amazing bear hang Simons made in the tallest tree he could find. This is him scanning for bears.



Note: I just got off the phone with the woman in NY again, the one I totally unimpressed with my interviewing capabilities...well, I did it AGAIN. This is going to be a strained relationship, I can feel it. Her scorning me. Me trying too hard to show her that I am not mentally deficient. Me failing. Her scorning me more and more...

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Fo shizzle

Okay, so I got the job.

NICE! Can you say "steady paycheck" anyone? The cool thing about this job, beyond its being easy peasy, is that I'm done with it by 10 am, and have the rest of the day to explore Sweet Juniper's Top Nine Things to Do in San Francisco, pitch articles, contemplate my first
novel, cook sumptuous meals for Simons, hang out with all the friends who will visit...

It's awesome.

So this is not something that is going to shine on my resume, by any stretch, but I'm still awfully psyched about it.

Also, I promised camping photos. I'll get on that tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Alright...Alright...Just trying to get a little change in my pocket...

(ahhh, don't you just love Matthew McCona-hey-hey? Meow, and I don't care if he is wierd.)

Once again, my sister has given the best advice ever. Remember that interview I blew on Monday morning? The one where the dog puked and my head ached and it was Daylight Savings Time and I was sore and cranky from camping, and the fates were stacked against me?

Yeah, that one. Well, after I got the "Thanks, but No Way in Hell" email from the editor, I called my sister boo-hooing, because that's what big sisters are for, especially responsible, kind and sensitive big sisters with a major diplomatic bent. And that is my sister exactly. She rocks. Anyway, she told me to write an email to the editor acknowledging that the interview didn't exactly put my best foot forward (I'll say), and to actually try writing the newsletter she wants and send it to her as a sample. So I did, and the woman was "very impressed" and wants me to meet the publisher TOMORROW! (please, please giant Everest pimple, go AWAY already!)

I'm not counting my freelancing dollars before they hatch, but still, this is RENT, folks. Simons will be so pleased! Oh man, I'm so tempted not to even tell him until I have the assignment.

Also, sent another kickass pitch, this time to Parents magazine, which I know is bizarre since I don't actually have any little critters. But I like them, have read every parenting book in the universe, and realized today that I have FOUR NIECES, ONE NEPHEW AND TWO GODDAUGHTERS. Man, it's going to be an expensive Christmas this year. Anyone have any ideas for cheap but nice children's presents? I had thought to knit them all hats or sweaters, but that is going to end up being more expensive than just getting them a pony. I keep threatening to do that, and for some reason, none of these mothers think that's funny.

So tomorrow, it's Dwell magazine, and maybe one of these days, someone will accept something I pitch. Now wouldn't that be a surprise.