Thursday, August 25, 2011

Things I didn't need today..

• Party Rock Anthem at 6:45 a.m.

• The bus AC to fail

• A flat tire on the work golf cart

• A high of 99 degrees

• A broken sandal

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Love it

I am going to excuse myself from really saying a lot about this book and movie pairing, simply because so much has already been said. But yes, the rumors are true. The Help is brilliant, touching and takes you from laughing to crying to wanting to rip heads off. Per usual, the 400 page book gives quite a bit more but the movie is good enough to stand alone if you haven't already read it. It's good. Really good. In fact, I am going to go ahead and place it in my top 10. Get it. Read it. See it.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Humanity - Wow or WTH?

Last week the universe served me a healthy dish of humble pie. I was on the train, hot and with the normal level of annoyance that I generally have on the last leg of my commute. This guy came and sat right in front of me, slamming his knee into mine with barely an apology. He was kind of weird looking and tended to stare at people so I spent some time judging what his upbringing must have been like i.e. lack of home-training, raised in poor taste as evidence by his tacky tattoos that ran down his arm which included hot rod flames, that matched his shoes, as well as the face of an average looking girl that I assumed was his old high school flame - now etched in fading ink and regret on his forearm.

A few stops down a small family got on with two kids. Ugh. Kids are the worst on afternoon trains – I’ve seen them drop suckers and gum on the floor and seats, run amuck and bawl their heads off. I braced for a few more stops of fresh annoyances as they were getting on, the mom first, then the two young kids, and then the dad. The train was pretty packed and there was really no place to sit, especially for a family of four. The mom walked down about four spaces from me, while tacky tattoo guy followed her with his stare. Just as I was about to yell at him in my mind, “Damn! Have some discretion with your gawking.” He jumped up and quickly walked over to her, telling her they could have his bench. She shyly sat down with her quiet and well-behaved children, while her husband came and stood beside her. I scooted closer to the window and invited him to sit down next to me and across from her, which he did thankfully. I was blown away and ashamed of my unfair assumptions. I have RARELY, only once in fact, seen a guy give up his seat on the Trax train. This guy was a kind and thoughtful gentleman and I unfairly made heinous assumptions. I am wretched. And to add insult to injury, as I was getting off at my stop this homeless looking guy, who I see on the train ALL the and who I had decided was either mentally not there or drunk, pushes the door open for me and smiles at me as I am getting off the train. Wow. I needed to sit down. I took a silent vow that I would be more mindful of my mean-girl judgmental thoughts, even if I never did give voice to them and even if they were just a symptom of an hour and a half commute in 95-degree heat. From that day on I have had more understanding and patience with people, giving them the benefit of the doubt and feeling a tiny bit more love for man-kind.

Fast-forward to this morning. I was driving on the freeway through the mind-bloggling construction in Utah County, when I felt my car start to wobble, like I didn’t have a lot of control. I kind of started going all over the road and correcting it was hard. I knew it was a flat and as the grinding noise grew louder I knew I needed to get off the freeway immediately, even though I was only one exit away from work. I pulled off right in front of a Harley store, an automotive shop and a tire shop. Plus it was right in construction zone with construction workers all over, mostly just sitting in their trucks. A stroke of luck indeed. Having only changed a tire once in my life, and under supervision, I decided to solicit help thinking all it would be was a few bucks. And that was only if I couldn’t attain their good will. So I walked over the automotive shop and told them my plight.
He barely batted an eye.
“Well we don’t do much with tires. I could probably help you if you had a spare but…”

“Yes, that’s all I need. I have a spare, I just can’t figure out my jack”

“It’s probably best for you to go talk to them (shop next door). They may not be in yet but you wouldn’t have to wait long.”


No one was at the place next door and fighting tears (I really don’t know why - maybe because I was at the mercy of strangers that refused to help me) I walked through the road construction to the other side of the road and busted out the tools and my owner's manual, while the construction dudes watched me a few yards away from their trucks. I had to stand on the tire iron to loosen the lug nuts and when it would give and fall off the nut I would fall and stumble. This happened with each one I loosened, and I could only imagine the road construction guys having a good laugh. I laid on the ground searching for a place to put the jack and then got up, looked in the manual and back to the ground. I was mad at myself for not knowing how to do this and looking like a dumb girl, or at the very least, not having AAA. But most of all I was incensed my these thoughtless a-holes that couldn’t be bothered to show any sort of concern when I was right under their nose. My dad would have helped, my brothers would have helped, my life-partner would have helped and just about every one of my guy friends would have come over to see what they could do. Who were these godless heathens? A few minutes later after I was covered in grime and dirt, these two old guys from a nearby greenhouse shop stopped by in their floppy hats and took over for me, showing me how to do it and why I was getting stumped. It took all of five minutes and they were on their way like it was nothing. They will be getting a basket of cookies.

I am not sure what the moral of this tale is. But I have kind of been knocked off the humanity high that I got from the train that day. I guess now my mindset is this: “A lot of people suck. But some don’t. Keep the faith”

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Mah Stories...

Hunger games series: Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay. Great story. Easy read. Action-packed. Unpredictable.
I would say more about it but there really is no frame of reference here. It's set in a different world as we now know it (the present time is "ancient times" in the books) everything about it is unique, and the storyline draws from nothing but the authors twisted yet brilliant mind. To be honest I expected to be a little underwhelmed due to all the hype around the series before I read it - plus it's young adult lit so I didn't know how bubblegum it was going to be. Not so. It's actually pretty dark but with enough triumphs to keep you hopeful and you don't want to kill yourself at the end. (I am looking at you Kite Runner.) I couldn't put it down and I loved Suzanne Collin's knock-you-off-your-feet-without-a-warning style. Downside - the protagonist is not always the most likeable, but then again she is a 17-year old brooding girl so it's true to form. Unlike Bella though, in the Twighlight Series, she is not a brat for free so you don't hate her like you do Bella. Because of her background you can at least empathize with her behavior and what she is going through. I would definitely recommend these books.

And then there is this Swedish mystery novel The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo(I was told by a good friend, who's literary taste I completely trust, that this was a must-read, only to find out later she hadn't actually read it.)

I mean, I make fun of my mom all the time for not liking books or movies that address issues that are sad, unpleasant or scary. Mama wants gleeful endings with lambs, flowers and singing all the way. I, however appreciate something that builds perspective, even if its painful or messy or tough - as long as its not gratuitous. The disclaimer here is that I don't like to watch Law and Order: SVU because it's a little grizzly for me sometimes, so that is where I am coming from.
But this book was almost too much for me. It's really good. Like can't-put-it-down good. But there things that go down that are pretty gruesome. It may take you a day to shake the violence, murders, attacks etc. that happen, or that they are investigating in the book - at least it did for me anyway. I am not sure if I will read the other two books in that series, and plus from what I can tell they are pretty much stand-alone anyway. On the flip-side they are coming out with a movie this winter, with Daniel Craig. The Swedes already made one but I would rather wait for an American one than do the whole caption thing during a butt-clencher as intense as I am sure this one will be. All in all, read at your own risk, but you won't be bored.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Mr.S Degree

Exactly one month ago I woke up married. There was a crazy week that ended with a two days of pictures, dancing, cake, friends, family, mountains of food and Spanx. There were some high notes, which included amazing performances and a few tears, and some lower notes, which may include the DJ playing Vanilla Ice and me forgetting to do my hair the day of the wedding. Thirty-one days later it's not anymore real than it was on day one. But I will say that for me, so far, the idea of marriage was a lot more scary than the practice. I live with a guy that I love, that takes care of me like I am the only one in the world, makes me laugh, lifts things that are too heavy, reaches things that are too high, sings me songs and let's me force him to watch The Bachelorette when the girls aren't around. Life is good. Really good. Call me the Mrs......but not for another six months or so, I am still trying to slowly wade into the titles.
Hot A bridesmaids.

An array of emotions

If could choose two people to be exiled on an island with...

Pretty Party

Friends and lovers. Thanks you guys!