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September 2004

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09.28.2004 - - - 5:42 PM
Ever have one of those days where you wake up and you know that you just can't deal with whatever it is you have to do that day? Well, I had myself one of those days last week. I, uh, didn't go to work, and instead I had a day that was all for me. It was the best thing I have done for myself in ages, actually - even better than finally doing 4 months worth of dry cleaning. Unlike most sick days, however, I did not spend this one on the couch watching Oprah (not that I ever watch Oprah, I would like that to be PERFECTLY clear). Nay, I actually made the most of my day! And the crazier thing was, I managed to not spend tons of money! Nuts.

I started my day by waking up at the normal time, but I took my time getting ready. I then went to get a facial! My parents gave me a gift certificate to a spa back in June for my birthday and I thought it was high time I used it. I'd never had a facial before, and my uh, facialist, was stunned by that, "Should I call 9-1-1?" Oh, so funny, you witty German Facialist you. At first it was so nice...a lovely massage of my face, neck, and back, along with some very nice-smelling lotions. She even gave me a hand massage! After she rubbed my hands into submission she wrapped them up and placed them in heated mitts. So nice - or so I thought at the time. I was steamed for 10 minutes, and then the torture started. I'd heard about "extractions" during facials, but no one told me it felt like fucking knitting needles being driven through my skin! My eyes were seriously watering, and I suddenly realized why my hands were trapped in those warm padded mitts. I bit my tongue and prayed for it to be over! Finally my crazy German Facialist said, "I have to stop know. Your skin, it is bright red. I did major problem spots, you need to come back because there are more" Oh. Well, thanks for that self-esteem boost, lady. She must have known I was vulnerable because she then managed to get my consent for some other like, exfoliating thing that I "really needed for my skin." Wah! By the end of the facial I was convinced my face would be fire-engine red, but when I looked in a mirror there was just a bit of color in my cheeks. Of course, German Facialist took credit for that, "I am good, I got out bright red color, eh? You come back in 5 weeks, you have lots of problems." Sob!

After I broke away from the crazy lady, I went down to the Meatpacking District for a haircut. It had been rescheduled a couple of times, so I was glad the day was finally upon me with no cancellations. I participated in the Bumble and bumble Model Project. To become a hair model, you have to fill out a questionnaire, go to the salon to be evaluated, and then finally scheduled for a cut. They make it seem like brand-new stylists will be cutting your hair, but actually they are stylists from all over the country who have been cutting hair for a long time that just want to learn new techniques. The girl who cut my hair was so cute. She's from San Diego and had been having a total blast in the City. She was a little funky, just the way I like my stylists to be. She gave me a GREAT cut. Lots of piece-y layers, with long bangs in the front. Its fun, I like it a lot. I spent an extra 20 minutes this morning doing my hair, only to have it all fall approximately 3 seconds after I walked outside thanks to the 100% humidity. Ugh.

After the hair salon I jumped on the subway down to Battery Park, where I bought a ticket for the Statue of Liberty Ferry. I really could not have picked a better day to go out to Liberty Island, it was gorgeous and sunny and not too windy. I really enjoyed the boat ride out, and I took 8,000 pictures from the water of Manhattan, the bridges, the statue, and the different islands. It wasn't too crowded on Liberty Island, which was nice. I was able to walk around without bumping into people, and some parts of the island were actually quite peaceful. I took some great shots of the statue, too. I have to confess, I didn't get off the boat at Ellis Island. At that point it was 5:30 and I was tired and hungry. I know I'll be back there in the near future with at least one of my visitors, so I will make sure to get off the boat then. Once I got back uptown, I went to a new restaurant down the street from my apartment. It was good food, but the service was very slow - slow enough to keep me from going back, which is disappointing. Oh well, it's not like there aren't eight hundred thousand other restaurants I can try.

I have been working long hours in preparation for my VACATION! Woo, less than two days away. Even with it coming on the heels of my mental health day, I NEED this vacation. Work is extremely frustrating right now, with everyone being told different things, and I just need to be away. I will miss my friends while I'm gone, but they see that I am very close to exploding. You know how when you're mad people tell you to count to 10? Well, I have been counting things to pack. It's effective! I am going to start packing and cleaning tonight, so that tomorrow I don't have as much to do. My super shuttle is picking me up at 4:10 AM on Thursday! Holy moly, that's early. I'm going to be exhausted when I arrive on Maui...good thing I'll be on vacation!

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09.23.2004 - - - 5:45 PM
Effing subways! They have been having some serious problems lately, but none had really made a difference in my commute until the other day. I had an appointment in midtown at 9:30 am, about 9 blocks from my office. I hopped on the 6 and got to my transfer station with no problem. As I walked to my platform, I saw a train on my side of the tracks, stopped. I hurried up, thinking it was a train I could get on. As I got closer, I kept waiting for the doors to open. They didn't. I could see the people inside making, "what the hell?!" faces. Thinking it was just a door problem, I kept walking toward the end of the platform only to discover that the train had started pulling out of the station before it stopped. That wasn't good. It was stalled. I could see a train waiting in the tunnel. I was like a spectator at a tennis match looking between the two trains. I finally looked at my watch and saw it was 9:05. I made the executive decision to leave the station to try to catch a bud. I still had 25 minutes and if I could get a bus quickly I would be able to get across town quickly enough to walk the last few blocks. However, when I got above ground that idea was quickly squashed - it was bumper to bumper on the bus route, without a bus in sight. Crap! I started trying to hail a cab, running around for the best position on the street. When I managed to grab one and the driver asked me where I was going, he said, "oh, no, all the roads are closed, it's the U.N." Damn the UN! I begged him to get me as close as possible to my destination, as it was now 9:15 and I was starting to freak out. We had to drive 14 blocks in the wrong direction and go through the park...just like every other damn car. I finally got to my appointment 10 minutes late, after jumping out of my cab when we were 4 block away and RUNNING. Not a monumental amount of time, but I hate being late. Later that night, the traffic was still so messed up that Senator Kerry was forced to leave his car and walk to the U.N. Gotta love that City traffic.

I have been so tired lately. At work, I struggle to keep my eyes open. The thing that sucks, though is that I wouldn't be able to fall asleep once I got home. It's just the most frustrating thing. Luckily last night I fell into a very deep sleep, and I felt a bit more rested when I woke up this morning as opposed to the others this week. I'm hoping tonight I'll fall asleep with no problems and I will feel even better tomorrow, too. I just can't keep sucking down coffee to stay awake...my addiction to caffeine can't handle it! And then I have to keep upping my coffee intake, and the next thing you know, I'm drinking 800 cups of coffee a day. Not good, especially when you get super hyper on caffeine like I do. In an attempt to wake myself up, I went to Macy's on my lunch break and returned a pair of shoes I bought. I really, really liked them, liked them so much that when the shoeman told me they didn't have an 8, only a 7 1/2 I bought the 7 1/2. When I got home and squeezed my feet into them, I realized how crazy I was. After I returned the shoes, I walked over to the MAC makeup counter. I had the nicest chick help me. There is nothing like a makeup artist working on commission to make you feel better about yourself. "Oh, this color would look SO GOOD with your eyes, they are just so beautiful." "I think this shimmer would really highlight those AMAZING cheekbones you have." "These shadows would look FABULOUS with your coloring." I walked out of there with a rainbow on each eyelid and more confidence in the form of a bag of cosmetics. I love buying happiness.

This is my last weekend in NYC before I ship off to Hawaii next Thursday! I know, you hate me. I am so ready for this vacation. I have a lot to do before I leave, though. First, I MUST clean my apartment. I am going to be gone for 10 days and I don't want to come back to a messy place, especially since when I return I'll have spent the last 18 hours traveling. I have to organize all of my summer-weather clothes, because those are going back to Cali with my parents. I need to, um, uh...I know there is other stuff I have to do! I just don't remember off the top of my head. Pay my bills! Pay my rent! See, there is some stuff. Saturday will be totally shot because of college football (Go USC!), so Sunday is errand day. I'm really not looking forward to how long it is going to take me to get to Hawaii and back. ESPECIALLY since I watched that new show Lost last night. It is so good, but holy crap, I had to fast forward through the parts on the plane! Not something I needed to see with 21 hours of plane flights ahead of me. Okay, I know you feel sooooo sorry for the girl going to Hawaii. I'll stop now.

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09.16.2004 - - - 6:15 PM
The last few days have been packed with activities, my pretties. On Tuesday we had a company picnic. Yes, people actually have picnics in New York. We left work around 2:30 and headed up to the 100's for a park right along the Hudson. There was a nice little cafe there, and we were all free to order whatever food and drinks we pleased. Let me tell you...at my table we ordered 5 appetizers for 4 of us. Then full meals. When you get a bunch of people that are as overworked and underpaid as we are, and you tell us that we can order whatever we want well, you'd better be prepared. I don't even know how many beers I drank. I would have to guess...hmm, actually, I can't even venture a guess. It was an insane amount because HELLO it was open bar. None of that draft stuff, either, it was Corona with a lime all the way for me. And when my beer would get warm, I would just order a cold one, discarding the nasty warm beer. People, it was like I was RICH! Last weekend when I was watching football, I would force myself to drink every last drop of beer, pretending it wasn't totally skunky and warm. I tasted what it's like to be rich, and it tastes like ice cold heaven!

In other picnic news, there were sand volleyball courts that we were able to use. Some people had prepared for this, like me, and brought shorts to change into. Others didn't, but still played in their jeans or whatever. I call those people total gamers! There was a group of us that played about 10 games, only stopping long enough between games to refill our beers or scarf down a hamburger. Since we were playing on sand courts, everyone really got into it, diving for balls and everything. I made a joke that someone was going to step on a needle and get hepatitis...so, being the person who made the joke, I was the one who got hurt. And no, I didn't run into a pole or get a volleyball in the face - I cut up my left leg diving on the sand. ON THE SAND. There is a huge gross gash on knee, and there are long red scrapes going all the way down to my ankle. And no, there was nothing in the sand that I cut it on. Just SAND! How do you get cut on sand?! I am mystified. The one good thing was that the injury came at the end of the night, so my pain was, uh, less intense than it might have been had it happened earlier. The bad thing about that was that I just brushed as much sand off the cuts as I could and went on about my merry way. Cleaning my leg the next morning was SERIOUSLY painful. I will spare you the gory details, but I will tell you that it took me 30 minutes. THIRTY MINUTES! *shudder*

I know you're thinking, why didn't you clean it off when you left the picnic? Well, that is because I didn't go right home. A group of about seven of us went to Karaoke when it got too dark to continue picnic-ing. We were so gross, this drunk group who had been playing sports all day, covered in sweat and sand (and blood, in my case), but we didn't care. We sang our little hearts out! The highlight of the night was definitely the duet of No Doubt's "Ex-Girlfriend" by Jere and me. We both spontaneously started head banging during the musical interlude and we brought the house down, baby! Then, despite the fact that we'd eaten 2 metric tons of food, we stopped at McDonalds before getting cabs home. I collapsed on my couch as soon as I made it into my apartment, and that's where I woke up yesterday morning. There's just nothing like those thoughts in the morning of, "why the hell am I on my couch?" followed by, "why is my body so sore," completed by, "OH MY GOD MY LEG." Seriously, nothing like it.

I managed to get myself to work eventually, where I was pretty catatonic for most of the day. All my energy was sapped cleaning out my wounds. Yuck. I was going to go straight home and to bed when Jere reminded me that we were invited to a CD release party for the Will and Grace CD. I rallied and we headed down to the party together. The party was at the new Bloomingdale’s in SoHo, which is a weird place to have a party. It's a small store and all of their make-up products were out on display so everyone had to be careful not to knock anything over. It was packed with people, so this was no small feat. Jere and I got there about 3 minutes before the cast did, so it was cool to see them pose for pictures and all of that. I have to say, though, that the ladies on that show make tons and tons of money but can't seem to afford a tailor because their pants completely covered their feet. Come on! I'm a short girl and I manage to make sure my pants are an appropriate length. And, since it was raining outside, the bottoms of their pants were soaked. We had fun, though, free drinks and finger foods and a fun gift bag. I love free! I was home by a decent hour, too, so I was able to watch Tuesday night's Amazing Race. I love that show! "My ox is broken," Best. Quote. Ever.

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09.10.2004 - - - 8:24 PM
I am so glad it’s the weekend. I have been so exhausted all week, and I could really use a couple of days where I don’t have to pretend like I’m awake or interested in work. I had a blast in California last weekend. It was so fun and relaxing…and then I took a red eye back to New York. Having taken two red eyes in the last few weeks, I can while that while they’re great in that I got more time in California, they wipe me out for the whole week. This last flight was the worst. I was sitting on an aisle, and the man next to me was so odd – before the plane had even pushed back from the gate he’d put on a surgical mouth cover and an eye mask. Weird! But at least he slept the whole time, which is more than I can say for me. The movie was "Raising Helen," so I thought if I made myself as comfortable as possible and watched a bit of the movie, I would fall asleep. Except I never got comfortable. I NEVER fell asleep. By the time my plane landed I felt like I was going to barf I was so tired. Then I had to wait for my super shuttle, which took AN HOUR to arrive, and then we had to fight traffic into the city. By the time I got home I barely had enough time to shower and get dressed, let alone take that power nap I really needed. I thought that I would sleep like a baby that night, but it was one of those things where I was so tired I couldn't sleep. Vicious. I am looking forward to being able to sleep this weekend.

Like I said, my time in So Cal was great. My parents picked me up at the airport and we went to a yummy Mexican dinner. The Boyfriend drove out to their house after work, and he gobbled down the take-out we'd picked up for him while we watched the "Best of Triumph" DVD I'd given to my dad for his birthday. On Saturday morning my parents left for the day, and TB and I got ready for a little party we were having. I'd invited over the whole crew for a BBQ/Pool party at my parents' house, so we had to get all the food and beverages ready. It was so much fun having everyone over. The weather was PERFECT, great for swimming or lazing around, and we had two TVs going for maximum sports coverage. We were all hoping Oregon State could pull off the upset of LSU, but their kicker...oh, their kicker. USC has had some special teams problems in recent years, so I could feel their pain. I think that everyone had as much fun at the party as I did, especially since it lasted long into the night. The later it got, the sillier we got. Lots of fun!

On Sunday The Boyfriend, Woodsy, Les, and I hung out some more at my parents' house. It was another gorgeous day, and we took full advantage of the still-warm pool and leftover food and drinks. Once we'd stuffed ourselves full of hot dogs, hamburgers, macaroni salad, and delicious beer, we floated belly-up in the pool for hours. After Woodsy and Les left, TB and I cleaned up the house and napped until my parents got home. Once they'd arrived we went out for a yummy dinner, then fell asleep at 9 pm! We were tired, okay? Two days of drinking will do that to you! Not that it ended there...on Monday my parents invited over their friends and some of their kids, and my bro and cuz came out. It was a regular party weekend. I felt some responsibility to help unburden my parents of all the left over alcohol, so I did my part on Monday. Poor TB, he had to drive me to the airport so he couldn't help as much as he wanted to. On our way to LAX we stopped by T and GiGi's house for another BBQ, and then it was finally time for me to bid Cali goodbye. I was sad, since I am not scheduled to be back until Christmas time.

I have a TON of people coming to visit me in the next few months, so that will help make the time fly. Next weekend my friends Jay Z and Bon Bon are coming for a warm-up. Then I'm in Maui for the first week of October. My mom is here Oct. 22-25, T & GiGi the 28-31, The Boyfriend Nov. 6-8, my mom and her friend Nov. 11-16, and Bree & D the 18th through 21st. My mom and her friend will be my last house guests (Bree & D are staying in a hotel), since my apartment lease is up at the end of November. My aunt and uncle will be here in December, too. Busy, busy! I love it, though. I am so lucky that I have so many people who want to come visit me...and take advantage of my free aero bed...hee. I'm happy to have everyone! I love opportunities to show off the city and do touristy things.

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09.03.2004 - - - 5:23 PM
I'm in an airplane right now. I'm actually writing this out by hand with the intention of typing it later. It's been a long time since I've written much of anything by hand, save a few jots here and there. I used to write out all my papers by hand when I was in college, which was no small feat when you realize I usually didn't start my papers until the day before they were due (I always got A's and B's on my papers, so I was never discouraged from this bad, bad habit). Right now my writing is sloppy from under use; or maybe it's because I just woke up from a fitful nap.

There is a family sitting in the row in front of me. The parents have three children, and right now they are all running wild. I finally stopped trying to sleep after I realized I'd turned my iPod's volume up to the point of distortion trying to drown out the sounds of the littlest one's screams. You know the kind - a two-or-so-year-old's gleeful shrieks. Cute on the playground...not so much in economy on United Airlines. Just now the little one started popping up over the seat in front of me, making a loud peek-a-boo noise. I gave the parents a look like, HELLO, but they are totally engrossed in the movie, the one where Jesus plays golf. I don't understand parents who let their children behave so poorly! My mom would have killed my brother and me if we even tried to unbuckle our seat belts. The littlest one just did it again, and this time I shushed him. The middle child said, "Sorry lady." Ouch! I'm a lady to these kids! It's funny to realize that, especially since the woman sitting next to me is most definitely A Lady.

Across the aisle from her is A Talker, and she recognized The Lady from the Convention. They are both dressed very nicely, not in suits but in that style that says, "I am affluent, I am smart, and I am political." I hate sitting next to people who wear heels and chandelier earrings for plane rides because they look so silly. The Lady is so put together that I suddenly feel as silly as those overdressed girls, and I am wearing too-big jeans, a Gap boat neck, and a zip-up hoodie. Why didn't I brush my hair? I must look so frumpy. At least I'm comfortable.

I talked a bit about the convention previously, but I didn't really get into any specifics. That's mostly because, I wasn't very affected by the whole thing. My apartment is uptown, and by my midtown office the only signs of the convention were the emergency lanes and traffic check points. The first time I saw the emergency lanes, I couldn't figure out what they were for - why was the NYPD making traffic use only two lanes in a direction when so many streets were closed? Then a fire engine went roaring down the street, totally free from all the traffic, and I understood. Normally emergency vehicles sit in traffic the way every other car does. My first week in NY, I was amazed by the drivers who wouldn't pull over to let cops and firemen by. I realized that the emergency lane was a preemptive measure, but it wasn't a huge revelation for me - I just made a mental note to not take the bus home.

The only time anything convention-ish happened to me was when I was waiting at the light at Broadway & 57th on my way to get some lunch. I heard sirens and noticed traffic cops were preventing us from crossing against the light. I looked in the direction of the sirens and saw a motorcade approaching. Lots of motorcycle cops and dark SUVs, with a town car in the middle that held a newspaper-reading Dick Cheney and his wife. Directly behind their car was an armored NYPD vehicle with armed officers leaning out. The people on the curb with me had no idea the Vice President had just gone by - they were more pissed that the light changed and we couldn't cross.

Most New Yorkers went out of town this weekend, including half of my office. The result was a strangely empty city, with none of the traffic problems or overcrowding that had been ominously predicted. Yesterday I walked part of the way home from work, amazed by how empty Central Park South was. I didn't go to any protests, and I only watched a bit of the convention on TV - the Bush twins and the President. I hate watching political speeches on TV. All the clapping and cheering after every sentence makes me absolutely batty. I wouldn't have watched any of either convention if it wasn't for the pit of responsibility I felt in my stomach...that, and my empty Tivo.

Yesterday afternoon, a coworker and I were discussing the convention and how it had affected us. She commutes from Connecticut every day on the Long Island Rail Road into Penn Station, so she have been affected a great deal. I mentioned getting off the PATH train on Sunday to an armed Penn Station. I remarked how, even though it was supposed to make us feel safer, the armed presence made me unsettled. She said it made her feel sad about how much things had changed. I wanted to say I understood, but I didn't. Being new to NY, I feel very apprehensive about any subject that even remotely involves September 11th. I know what it felt like to be in LA that day when those planes were supposed to land 10 miles up the coast from where I lived, and what it was like to watch the whole thing unfold on TV. I can't imagine what it was like to be a New Yorker that day. Friends and coworkers tell their stories of that day and I just listen. They knew people involved, I did not. I know what it's like to be a New Yorker now - to be tough and blasé while you wait for the other shoe to drop. When the convention ended yesterday night, I could almost hear the city sigh in relief.

This morning I was absolutely giddy with the excitement of going out to Cali again. Because of the long weekend, it was a half-day at work, and my friend Jere had given me a coupon for a free pair of Gap jeans. On my subway ride out to JFK, I began to feel a bit more somber. I started to worry about my flight. On my last two trips, my planes hit terrible turbulence. One plane had a large drop in altitude immediately after take-off, probably the scariest seconds of my life. I felt a knot in my stomach and had to force myself to think about other thinks - I focused on Gwen Stefani's voice in my earphones, "You worry yourself sick/'til you're blue in the face." Very apropos. On the Air Train, I noticed it was a clear day out. I could see the blimps hovering over the US Open not far away. As I strained to see what kind of blimp it was, the train turned and I realized I could see Manhattan. I spotted the Empire State Building, then my eyes automatically moved south. I realized with a start that I was looking at the area of lover Manhattan where the towers had once stood. I remember my old boss (a NJ native) saying, "I won't notice I'm almost home if I can't see the trade center from my plane." I never saw the towers in person. I suddenly felt very sad. I realized that the third anniversary is only a week away, and that while my friends would be at the first USC home game (where there would no doubt be a moment of silence), I would be in New York. Is it going to be weird that day? Will I feel completely out of place that day? Is it okay if I go to a bar to watch football and drink beer? I know it is. But I know that day I will feel guilty for wishing with all of my heart that I was back home in California.

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09.02.2004 - - - 3:44 PM
It's like a switch was flipped yesterday - after a hot, sticky, disgusting weekend, it's suddenly warm without being sweaty outside. The Weather Gods have decided that I suffered enough through my first New York summer and decided to give me some sweet relief. Many people have told me that this summer wasn't bad at all, and that the humidity was "nothing," but to me it was like walking through a hot mist every day. I got used to having my clothing stick to me, to having my shirts spotted with sweat and my hair go limp. Now that I've commented on it, though, I'm sure it will be extra-humid tomorrow.

Les and Matty left yesterday. I was so sad to return to my empty apartment! We had so much fun. On Friday night we took the 7 train out to Shea Stadium to watch the Dodgers play the Mets. I was excited to see the Dodgers play for the first time this year, and obviously they knew that because they played like crap. I think the Mets have lost something like, 9 of their last 10, and of course that ONE game they won was the game I went to. But, we still had fun. After we left the game, we met up with Handle, Walshy, and Lil' Walshy for drinks. Once I'd downed a few rounds I had to go to bed in preparations for our big Saturday.

USC Trojan Football Game Day! The three of us got up early and met Handle at the PATH station on our way to Hoboken to pick up our rental car. It was $100 cheaper to rent a car in New Jersey than in the city. Once we got the car and our other friend MP, we were off to Landover, MD. Because Les was the only one of us with car insurance, she was our driver. Unfortunately for her, the drive down to Maryland was filled with bridges, something she HATES with a fiery passion. Driving over bridges for her is like forcing me to touch someone's foot. Unfortunately, since the rest of us were unable to drive the car, she had to suck it up and take us to the other side. Handle and I tried to be nice and talk her through the drive, while Matty and MP made jokes about collapses. Besides the bridge problems, we had one other major obstacle - traffic. There was a ton of construction on the Jersey Turnpike that caused us to lose about and hour and a half of time, so we were unable to go to our hotel before the game. And the freaking TOLLS! I think driving through Delaware cost us like $187. For reals.

All was forgotten once we got to our parking space at Fed Ex Stadium in Landover...and by our parking spot at the stadium, I mean our spot in a lot about 5 miles from the stadium. We tailgated there for a little while, then grabbed a shuttle, where we ran around trying to find friends with tickets. Walking around the parking lot, we were shocked at how rude the VA Tech fans were. We were called so many names, I really couldn't believe it. I am a vicious shit-talker and have been known to say too much on occasion, but these fans even shocked me. We took the route of ignoring and laughing, because, as much as my evil tongue wanted to make an appearance, we weren't stupid - VA Tech fans outnumbered us 5-1. As game time approached, Handle still hadn't hooked up with her ticket connection, so I waited with her while the rest of our pals went to their seats. We finally got in after kick off, no biggie. Since our seats were no where near each other, we started patrolling the stands for two open seats. We got bounced from a couple places, only to find ourselves sitting together in the club level, surrounded by rich people and VA Tech fans. We quickly made friends with the enemies around us so they wouldn't kill us when our team won. Luckily, most of them left by the end of the game. Such sad, sad losers. Who's the big talker now?! Handle and I had fun cheering for USC, eating, drinking, and making up songs. Oh, and watching the game, that was fun, too.

On Sunday I woke up with a football hangover, so I was not really looking forward to the drive home. However, thanks to my post-game residue, I was awarded the front seat. We drove around Washington, D.C. a bit to take in the sites, then we hit the road for what would turn out to be a SIX HOUR DRIVE. More traffic, more construction, and more tolls all played a factor. At one point, we were in Pennsylvania, although no one is sure how that happened. We finally pulled of the turnpike at 8:04 in a panic, since we knew the rental place closed at 8. Luckily, Matty called ahead and BEGGED them to stay open for us, and they did. So, thank you, Enterprise of Hoboken! You rock. When we got off the PATH at 33rd St in NYC, we could see how the RNC had taken over - we passed 5 NYPD officers with assault rifles. It was a bit disconcerting. We all stared at them as we passed, prompting one officer to say, "Don't worry, I'm not gonna shoot you!" Um. Thanks?

Les and Matty were the best tourists. They didn't let the weirdness of the convention stop them from going to all the fun New York spots. They even did stuff I haven't done, like row in Central Park and go to the Statue of Liberty. On Tuesday night, we went up to the Bronx for a Yankees game. They had never been to Yankee Stadium, and it had been a while for me, so we were pumped. What a game it turned out to be, too! The Yanks lost 22-0. Yes, TWENTY TWO to ZERO! Against the Cleveland Indians! TARGET="_blank">Wild Thing wasn't even pitching. I have to say that it was most definitely the best Yankees game I have ever been to. BEST EVER! It was also rad to come into work the next day and tell people I was there. The Yankees have been in a tailspin the last two and a half weeks. Hee! I wear my glee quietly.

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