This Blog is Mostly Now Defunct


Thanks for stopping by what used to be a place where I dumped my younger twenty-something thoughts. While I don't feel the need to erase this piece of history from the Interwebs, I also don't really do a lot here anymore. It's also funny. The stuff that used to prompt me to share and write is now distilled into 140-character status updates elsewhere.

If you really want to read this stuff, then I will offer some curation of my favorite bits, below. So have fun browsing - and go easy on some of my more ridiculous posts, usually fits of some strong emotion or another.

-Eulogy/dedication for my grandma (March 07)

-family vacation with my Army Ranger uncle (July 05)

-running my first marathon (Nov 05)

-buying some boots (Feb 05)


I'm scared, but not for the reason you may think.


The economy is really going down the tubes (duh). I believe in economics as a science, as a study, as an art...and I believe that there are really smart economists and economic and social scientists out there who can probably fix it. I picture them squirreled away in their ivory towers, oaken studies, corner offices, and government cubicles reading and computing and rubbing their smudgy glasses on their ill-fitting oxfords.
We really need to be focusing on finding these people, kidnapping them, and setting them up in some high-tech collaborative Google-like campus so that they can debate and figure and FIX our economic shit day.

And then it dawned on me, and when it dawned on me, it scared the bejeezus out of me:

The person who has to be in charge of doing this round-up and making it happen via real policy manifestations -- bless his heart -- will either be John McCain or Barack Obama. Now before you think I'm going to say, "so I'm scared that neither is qualified"...hold on a sec.

That's not my fear.

My fear is that they CAN'T actually focus on this issue as much as they need to because their priority is actually not fixing the economy...it's getting elected. Sure, they sincerely want to lend a hand. They want it to get better. They really, really do gosh golly gosh gee!

But, they can't.

Getting elected and fixing the economy are two very time- and energy-consuming undertakings, and I really don't think either one of them (or, um, any human being for that matter) is the kind of multi-tasker who could tackle them both at the same time.

The person who has to fix this economy, who has to be RIGHT NOW dedicating 20 hours a day with a panel of experts and scientists, is instead roaming around the country talking in dumb third grader's language about abortion and trying to get elected. What this means is that it is almost guaranteed that the economy will not get the attention it needs.



it's true what they say about assumptions...

Please, can anyone give me one example in which an assumption that was made that was:
A) correct
2) healthy
III) productive

and, last but not least....


It's really frustrating living in a world where assumptions drive everything. Assumptions are...NOT FACTS. So WHAT THE EFF are we doing running around basing everything off of assumptions? If NASA built a spaceship and assumed it worked, that would be ridiculous. The same logic applies in life.

So why do we live our lives, do our jobs, engage in relationships (friends, family, whatever), eat our food, vote for candidates -- everything -- based on assumptions? Assumptions produce every single negative thing I can think of.

It makes no sense to me and I fear that I am doomed and/or cursed to tread water in a world driven by assumptions.

That's all. Happy Thursday.


next time, making Baggio proud

Between the recent college basketball season and the current baseball season, I've been watching something sports-related almost every day of 2008. I thought yesterday would be an exception, since the Nats had an off-day...but around 9pm I needed to unwind, so I turned on the ol' boob tube and started scrolling around. When I noticed the NCAA Women's Baskeball Championship was on, I hit "enter" on my remote and settled in to catch the second half of the game.

The last time I watched women's basketball was in early March, when a friend was visiting and we were flipping through the channels during the commercial breaks of the Syracuse/Marquette men's game. I changed it deliberately to whatever women's game was on and he -- although not a mean or sexist person -- snickered lightheartedly a little and said something to the effect of "isn't it ridiculous how much sloppier girls' basketball is?"
While I hadn't noticed on my own, once he mentioned it I guess I could see what he meant, and he being someone with whom I enjoy a great deal of laughter and who frequently makes these kind of over-the-top remarks in general, I ended up laughing a bit as well.

This sillier mindset carried over to last night, when I was discussing the championship game on the phone with a good friend. I lightheartedly repeated the earlier comment but soon realized how serious the words actually were. In fact, what I thought was funny actually went against not only an entire lifetime of my own experience, but also a century of hard-fought progress by political and athletic heroes alike.


Since I can even remember, there was only one thing I wanted in the entire world: to be the first woman to play on the U.S. men's national soccer team. I was obsessed with guys like Pele, Maradona, and Baggio (as well as our own Lalas and Jones) and since there was no women's team, I figured I would just have to step up to the plate and join the fellas.
Fast-forward to 1989. That's when FIFA finally established the Women's World Cup (almost 60 years after the men's!), and Miss Akers & Co. brought the first gold medal home from China in '91. I simply couldn't believe the good news! With this, my mission had been tweaked and my new goal was to instead join the likes of Akers, Hamm, and Lilly someday out there on the pitch. Yes, I still cried myself to sleep when Baggio missed his kick in '94 (I also vowed I would never bring my country that kind of over-the-crossbar shame), and I still wrote fan mail to that red-headed defender of US fame all throughout middle school, but my new dream -- and the dreams of entire generations of girls -- finally had its own place.

Now, more than a decade and a half later, that place is more stable than ever, according to the latest study by two Brooklyn College professors. In fact, in 1970, (prior to the 1972 enactment of Title IX under the Carter Administration), the national average of women's sports teams per school was only 2.5. Currently the number sits at 8.65 -- an incredible total increase of 346%. Additionally, there are now more than 180,000 female athletes competing on more than 9,000 sports teams in our country's colleges. These three figures are historical highs.

While this is all fine and dandy on a pretty bar graph, what does this mean in blood, sweat, and tears?
It means that more young women will spend hours after school kicking a ball against a wall hoping to improve their first touch, because they have more forums in which to pursue their dreams.
It means that more young women will have access to team sports because youth leagues and high-caliber development programs are forming and growing stronger every year to support these dreams.
And it means that The Worldwide Leader in Sports will broadcast on national television every game of the tournament in which one team will end up realizing its ultimate dream, as the Lady Vols did last night.


Unlike a free throw or a penalty kick, there really are no extra chances in life, and mistakes and regret cannot be mollified by a gigantic "re-do." Nope, them's the breaks of the real world...um, just like the fact that I never even made the varsity squad in college.

But there is always a next time, an off-season, another game.

So next time I hear a comment like that, rather than laughing I will look my friend in the eye and tell him that what he just said is disgusting. That if the play was, in fact, "sloppy" at all, it sure as hell has nothing to do with the fact that it's "girl's" basketball. I will tell him that even comparing one to the other is like comparing apples and oranges, from which no rational juice could ever be gleamed, and which for such a smart guy is quite the dumbass remark.

I know this isn't the same as a game-winning goal scored at the buzzer, but at least it's not over the crossbar on the final shot.
And sometimes it takes one bad game to come out on top next time.


"Good" Friday

It's Good Friday, party people!

Actually, I could care less (no offense) about the religious thing. But I just felt like making a list of things I think are good.

Things I Think Are Good, by Emilie Cole:
-beer (except Fat Tire. Blech.)
-the practice of following one's gut (by practicing the policy of following one's gut, one will inevitably learn lessons (yes, some very hard). As a result of this learning, one's gut will evolve to include more and more "right" decisions, which in turn will arm one with an even better gut to follow)
-the resulting redevelopment of Southeast DC due to the new Nationals Stadium
-saying "please" and "thank you"
-moderation (itself in moderation)
-laughing until you can't see or breathe, whichever comes first
-having bad days and hard times
-Kraft Mac-n-Cheese Spirals, preferrably with a hot dog cut up
-true alone time once in a while
-feeling exhausted from physical exercise
-Web 2.0 and Google
-extreme right- and left-wingers. Both are a beautiful part of our collective dialogue
-doing nothing sometimes
-if you have kids, to have more than just one
-Cat Stevens
-equality in marriage
-use of the serial comma
-Bush's vegetarian baked beans
-Syracuse not making the tournament (you got to earn it to own it, kiddos)
-the Classical Renaissance
-onion rings with ranch dressing
-trying new things and even retrying things you didn't like before once in a while
-The Wire
-serving in the military (I didn't)
-spending a little more for green products
-these Girl Scout cookies: Thin Mints, Samoas, and Tagalongs
-the Ten Commandments, as read secularly
-the people in my life
-the American system of checks and balances, especially the idea of three separate branches of government
-immigration reform
-knowing how to drive manual transmission
-knowing Spanish (I don't)
-direct-service non-profit organizations and huge internationals banks
-the fact that The New Yorker just exists (I don't necessarily need to read it)
-pub appetizers, especially pub appetizer sampler plates which include lots of fried things
-All, It's


home, spring, whatever

...And that's to say, yeah I'm leaving...But I don't have to go there.
I don't have to go to Spring Street.
Because its spring everywhere.

I thought my spring involved leaving. I was happy with my plan, and too angry to look back. Hindsight is 20/20...and I guess I'd rather eventually see 20/20, no matter how frustratingly-timed, than to never see it at all.

I thought my spring hinged on this move...on this new beginning, and the way I was raised it was ingrained in me to turn to 'new beginnings,' so I never questioned that. Now for the first time in my life I sense home, and I know where it is. And it's not where my family is, although I thought that may have been the case. And it's not where the majority of my family thinks I "should" be. And it's not "less" home because it is far from them.

And it's not the familiarity or the memories. It's not the sound of the Muni, the farmer's market, the sparkling bay on a sunny day, or the freedom to feel glum on a foggy one. It's not calling Papalote and having them know my voice, or sitting in my kitchen with the ravished spread laid out on the table and offering Karen the last bite of my rice and bean super burrito 'cause I know she wants one last bite. It's not merchants of 24th; the Fernandas or the Jules or the Joes. It's not the exhilarating thigh-burn I get when I walk anywhere, nor the fun disdain for the Marina. It's not cheering with Random Dave at the Dub on an autumn Sunday morning, or Karen hearing the homeless guy ride his shopping cart down 24th Street at 11pm and hurry up and look or we'll miss it this time. It's not the obnoxious sound-making knick-knacks lining Mission Street storefronts, or posters of leather-clad beefcakes lining Castro Street. It's not the spot on Fair Oaks where so many nicely-potted plants have been arranged by a bench and I look down toward my house and everything feels good and the sunlight peeks through to the sidewalk and I can hear the kids over at the Adda Clevenger playing during recess. It's not donuts on Christmas morning or Bart's ravioli on Thanksgiving. It's not fixed-gear bike riders, or riding my own bike across the bridge, dodging the Blazing Saddles renters, and around and then up to the tippy top of the Headlands with my calves on fire and my heart pumping and my lungs heaving, and looking back on the city and getting goosebumps.

No, all those things are just nice memories I feel lucky to have like all the other thousands I'm forced to keep in my mind from the myriad of places I've lived.

Home? Home is where the heart is.

And I want to come home.


misc. wednesday

-I can't believe it's been a year. I don't want to die without doing what makes sense. I don't want to lose important things due to stuff I could have changed. I don't want to sell myself short.

-I won't.

-Hey there...what's that in your sky
With all the pretty lights
You think I can get that high?
Hey you man, where's your motivation
And why the celebration
You've gotten nothing done here.
You wanna live until you
Die alone and will
Fly alone and will
I'm not so far below
I live beneath your sky
With tainted eyes,
I've made my mind
To live until I die
Run run run catch me if you can can can
Come and hold my hand and I'll be your biggest fan
Followers living in your hollow words
I have seen your nine to fives
Wash away your dreams