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tea organization

My tea was a mess.  I sort of tried to keep it in 3 containers–one blacks, one herbals and one everything else.  But it was totally unappealing and confusing and all the bags were different sizes and I would end up forgetting about the awesome tea I had.

Until today! I went on a taxonomic spree!

My new sections, totally skewed for my tastes in order of size are:

Herbals (Hibiscus, Mints & Chamomiles, oh my!)

Earl Greys & Flavored Blacks (i.e. almonds mainly)

Chais (I <3 all kinds of them)

Greens & Whites (I don’t love either)

Unflavored Blacks (Breakfast Teas & British stuff mainly)

Iced Teas (mixes, and tea you can brew cold)

Drink Mixes (Kool Aids, Tang, Emergen-C powder)

Now, this goes against most things I teach people to do.  I mean, ideally there would be a large box called Blacks and there would be boxes inside called Flavored and Unflavored and inside Flavored would be Earl Greys, Nutty, Fruity, etc.  But I have three bags of fruity black tea, and I don’t want to open up 3 matryoshka-like containers to get to them!  And Drink Mixes aren’t even tea!  What about Tisanes?  Well those aren’t invited to my house.  And when I want Hibiscus tea, I have to remember I have herbal non-caffeinated hibiscus tea in the Herbals and Green Hibiscus in the Greens.  Harumph.  Real things can’t really be polyhierarchied, unless I split it into two bags which seems a step too crazy.

Even though my system isn’t perfect, I can take heart that 1. it’s just tea and 2. it works! At least I made sure to use consistent plurals.  This taxo project was constrained by the number and size of tea containers I own.  The latter is not a constraint I usually deal with.  And my hatred of Tisanes was sort of like a political issue that constrains real life projects.

Only organizing digital things makes me forget sometimes how people look for tangible things.  Or maybe that’s an excuse to try and get a lesson out of my compulsion.  Either way, come drink some tea!

in a circle jerk you can’t have your hands straight out

My family can’t keep track of my friends.  They make fun of me that I have friends in every city. And a friend mentioned today that I travel a lot.  Except I was sad I was doing so little traveling this year.  Ha.  I take for granted never staying in one place, always having someone in the next port.

And I have been in a relative (to me) slump, and lots of people called, texted, emailed, or came by plane, train, or car to help me out.  Not because I asked, or not necessarily just to see me, but that’s how my friends are.  They’ll take a 4 hour bus trip to see me when I am in a town nearby.  And I will do the same.  And you might not think that’s weird, but I think most people do.  Because a lot of people won’t even pick you up at the airport 15 mins from their house.  And my friends will.  Because they are super, super awesome.

And I am not the easiest person to help.  As my friend Grace said, “You are the most independent person I know.”  I take that as an extreme compliment, but I am realizing it’s also a bad thing.  Or it can be.  My favorite movie is Showgirls, and though people ridicule it (as do I), there’s a scene where the main character (who runs out of every scene rather than deal with anything) is told:

“You got your arms straight out, saying, ‘Back off, motherfucker.'”
“Yeah, you got that down. BACK OFF, MOTHERFUCKER!”

It’s my nature to have my hands straight out yelling, “Back off, motherfucker.” (Hereafter referred to as BOMF). I don’t need your help, why won’t you just let me do it by myself?  It’s a hereditary stubbornness, combined with an upbringing where I could never do anything alone.  I am hardwired to do things for myself, by myself, and I am not comfortable with asking for help or even realizing when people are offering it.  Asking for help feels like conning a mark to me.  But my friends are awesome, because they help anyway.  They self-correct for my BOMFy tendencies.  And that’s good.  I know a few other BOMFy people and I think sometimes we just have to be sat down (literally or metaphorically) by our friends and told to accept help.

So, thanks everyone.  You rule.  Whether you force me to leave the house, listen to my late-night calls, take my ims, offer advice, realize when I am roundaboutly asking for help because you know it’s hard for me to ask directly, or get out of the way when I am yelling, “Back off, motherfucker!” you are helping.  And I am trying to put my hands down and shut up more often.

Everything you need to know you can learn from Showgirls, in my opinion.  In the future, all writing will prove that.

your pet crazy

Please submit your crazy irrational tics to my dear friends at My Pet Crazy.

meme request

My friend Claire requested I answer this meme:

1. Just how lazy are you?

Very. I have no sense of discipline. I have found a way to quickly and efficiently not walk up a couple of flights of stairs in my local subway station sans elevator.

2. What are you going on and on about these days?

Hmm. I am back on the conjoined twins kick, but I have been talking a lot about my recent visit to the L. Ron Hubbard museum.

3. Your husband/significant someone always calls it a crackpot theory, but you know you’re really onto something. Tell, tell, tell!

Being single means no one criticizes my crackpot theories! HA! My crackpot theory regards the Beach Boys actually being a punk band a la the Ramones. Also I am pretty sure AA is a scary cult, but I don’t think it’s crackpot and a lot of people agree but it’s one of those things you can’t say without people freaking on you.

4. Have you ever eaten a half a hard boiled egg that you found on the floor, and then absentmindedly shaken salt directly into your mouth to chase it?

No, but I have picked something up off the floor I thought was something tasty but was in fact plastic. Oh, the shame.

5. What did you really screw up this year?

Um, hmmm….seeing doctors regularly.

6. What did you really get right?

I think I am getting better at professional networking.  And dating. Go me!

hello, sailor

me: I swear a lot

friend: men like that.  it means you put out.


Jared Friedman, rockstar

Do you live in DC, SC, NC, TN, PA, KY, LA, or AR? And do you love to listen to rock music? Or perhaps would you like to meet a Jew? Then perhaps you should go see a show by my friend Jared Friedman. He will be playing in your parts, and, in addition to being a smashing musician, he will let you in on how he controls the media for a dollar.  If you bargain with him.

You can listen to his musical stylings here and tour dates are as follows:

Apr 3 2008 8:00P
The Velvet Lounge DC, Washington DC
Apr 4 2008 8:00P
Sparky & Clark’s York, Pennsylvania
Apr 6 2008 8:00P
The Village Tavern Mount Pleasant, South Carolina
Apr 7 2008 8:00P
The Juggling Gypsy Wilmington, North Carolina
Apr 8 2008 8:00P
TBA Asheville, North Carolina
Apr 9 2008 10:00P
The Acoustic Coffeehouse Johnson City, Tennessee
Apr 10 2008 8:00P
Bread and Bagel Bowling Green, Kentucky
Apr 11 2008 8:00P
Java and Jams Birmingham, Alabama
Apr 12 2008 8:00P
Caffe Cottage Lafayette, Louisiana
Apr 14 2008 8:00P
The Carousel Lounge Austin, Texas
Apr 15 2008 8:00P
Super Happy Fun Land!!! Houston, Texas
Apr 17 2008 8:00P
The Poets Loft Hot Springs, Arkansas
Apr 18 2008 8:00P
Kimbro’s Cafe Franklin, Tennessee
Apr 19 2008 8:00P
The Curb Cafe Nashville, Tennessee

Oddly Mr. Friedman will not play alone here in NYC, so I will not be able to hear the awesomeness you can!


I know I am a librarian, and thus know far too many people with them, but apparently it’s illegal to write a blog post today if it isn’t about cats.  Did anything happen today for anyone that doesn’t involve cats?  I was allergic all day at work, and now I am wondering if it’s because of Official Cat Day.  Anyone who has a not cat story to share, please blow up the comments.

Regarding my pets, my new Scooba is broken.  We’re getting him a new tank.  iRobot customer service rocked out.  I still haven’t named the new Scooba, but please feel free to offer names for Fido’s brother!  Perhaps Kitty?

to eric!

I have a friend who often jokes he wants to pay me to write nice things about him on my blog so that when people google him, it will come up. Tonight was his birthday, and he insisted on giving me partial cab fare back home from HIS birthday party. I scoffed at this idea–generally I can pay for a ride home from where I am visiting, and the idea of taking money from a person whose birthday it is is unfathomable to me. But, under duress, he put money in my coat. So today I sing songs (Ancient Greek style) of the excellence of one Eric Lovaas.

Eric feeds a dear deer beer

Eric Lovaas, dear future employer/friend/date, is one of the nicest, most responsible, and honest people I have ever met! He’s thrifty AND stylish. He’s wholesome in a Midwestern way! He has excellent musical taste. Eric is the kind of guy who will give you (or me) cab fare home on HIS birthday. Eric is the kind of guy who will stay sober to take a drunker friend (not me) home on his own birthday. He’s easygoing, modest, and funloving. He will supply you with free cigarettes when you are drunk. He is quite responsible and timely. He loves non-fiction and food books and will get you some for free. And he is quite an excellent Scrabble player. If you have a chance to know Eric Lovaas, I would recommend doing so.

You too can easily buy a testimonial. Inquire within.

book meme

I was tagged by Grace!

Total number of books owned: Not sure, and I just weeded a bunch.  Defintely less than 100.  Oddly, for a booklover and librarian I hate owning books.  I never read books I own.  I check books out mainly.  I only believe in buying books that you use a lot or won’t be able to find in the store/library.

Last book bought: Likewise, I never buy books.  I only buy the weird dollar books outside at used bookstores.  The last one I recall was a weird cheesy 1970s “Love Your Body” book that I intend to frame particularly great pages from.

Last book read
: Currently reading “The Nasty Bits” by Tony Bourdain (pretty awesome) and “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” by Michael Pollan (struggling to finish).

Five Books that Mean a Lot to You
: I also quickly forget books I read.  I elect to discuss books that have made me really excited about reading books semi-recently–i.e. books I couldn’t wait to finish and reread!

  1. The Dirt: Autobiography of Motley Crue (Read in obsessive way, gave it to all my friends)
  2. Cod by Mark Kurlansky (Picked it up on a whim, became obsessed, tried to explain to people why I was obsessed with a book about a boring fish.  Later on I used it as my first library school indexing project. I think, after taking time off from History stuff after college, this was one of the books that reminded me how much I loved reading history, and how well history could be written.)
  3. Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs by Chuck Klosterman (stayed up all night reading it)
  4. The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket (Made me love/respect children’s books.)
  5. American Psycho (Read over one night.  I don’t know that I even understand this book, or get it, but I found it incredibly compelling.)

really? All Things Considered?

I really love Radar Magazine and was finishing an issue today when I got to their back page “100 Reasons You’re Still Single.”  While many of the reasons were hilariously true (hello, 99), I found many of them to be things I would look for in a significant other (starting line dances and eating Bacos as a snack actually sounds like something I would do with my friend Mary on a Friday night).  And certainly many men who cry about Belle and Sebastian are getting laid left and right.  But it was really number 96 that hit home:

96. Don’t like Insane Clown Posse’s music per se, but think their philosophy is sound

I will think about this tonight as I snuggle alone on my ICP pillowcase (by choice).  Well not totally alone.  I have a pitcher of sangria looking mighty attractive.


Maybe you hate VDay, maybe you love it. But even if you don’t like the whole consumerist angle (hey, I like Necco conversation hearts, but that’s about it), it’s a good reminder to tell people you like that you like them.

I like you!

If modern browsers supported marquee, which thankfully they don’t, this would be the time to use it.

best message

I got one of the best phone messages of late:

“BITCH!  I miss you!  I am drunk and making nachos!”