Thursday, August 30, 2007

The Perfect Moment

Since I finished my job today, I have shifted into wedding planning mode. I can do that for the next couple of weeks before I start school (The goal being to finish as much as I can prior to school starting). The problem with planning is that there are not alot of wedding details that I have few opinions on, and the ones that I do, I have really specific and precise opinions (Like my desire only to have white and ivory southern flowers that end in the letter "a").

Music. Music. When else do you have the opportunity to share the perfect mix with all of your favorite people? For the past 10 years of my life, I have been refining and creating my wedding mix to remind me of all of those great happy moments, of which I am sure that my wedding will be the pinnacle. This song, this moment, when people ask me for my wedding theme, I want to say this clip is it because that is exactly what I want it to feel like.

Needless to say, Buffalo Tom will be included in the mix.

Another Last Day

Today is my last day at my job. Tomorrow I am flying home to visit my family in the South for a couple of weeks. Then, when I return to Washington, I will be a student all over again.

We actually had my going away party last Friday night. We had pizza and went bowling. This is also an excellent idea if your son is turning twelve years old. I haven't had many parties thrown for me in my adult life, but my 24th birthday party was also a bowling party. This means that roughly 2/3 of the parties on my behalf I have had in my adult life (a going away party in New York, a going away party here, and my 24th birthday party in New York) have been bowling parties. One would think that I am a good bowler with all of this bowling. One would be wrong.

Today for my goodbye lunch with my assistants, Melissa and Carrie, we went to the Old Spaghetti Factory. This marks the first time that I have been to Ye Olde Spagetti Factory since I visited the restaurant of the same name in Trolley Square before I left Utah. I wish I could say that the food has gotten better. It hasn't. In fact, we had to give the server our bread back because it actually was moldy.

These are the events that mark the possible end to my career as an attorney.

Tomorrow, Florida awaits.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Return to high school

Today, I had a dentist appointment so I could, get this, pick up my new retainer. I am suddenly fourteen years old again. But since I was probably fourteen years old the last time that I wore my retainer, I have lately become paranoid that my teeth are going to move around and become crooked again. Hence, I asked my dentist to make a new retainer for me. I am trying to model myself on my sister Melissa who always wore her retainers and therefore her teeth remain unchanged since the day her braces were removed.

I need to write an addendum to my post from yesterday. We actually didn't end up going to the Mariners game last night as the Nintendo tickets were not available (it was just as well considering how badly the Mariners lost to the Angels last night). However, we did go eat at the newest Tom Douglas restaurant in Seattle, Serious Pie, with Brandon and Wendy, and Wendy's sister. It was so much fun. I am so sad that they are moving because we have been able to bond over our mutual love of food. When I get back from the South, I am going to try to bake them a Red Velvet Cake before their move.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Why do all of the cool ones move away?

David and I sometimes have bad luck when it comes to friends. It seems like when we have people that we really enjoy hanging out with, they end up relocating away from Seattle. It happened first with Brigham and Jennie, who moved to D.C. Now, it is happening with Brandon and Wendy, who are moving to the Bay Area, as Brandon is being transferred for work. The worst part about Brandon and Wendy's move is that we just realized that we had fun together in the past week, and now I am leaving to go to the South for three weeks, and when I return, Brandon and Wendy are leaving on the 27th.

We met Brandon and Wendy because Brandon was the second counselor in our bishopric, even though Brandon graduated high school two years behind David and I. He and Wendy have excellent stories, and we figured out that we know some of the same people from our BYU days. Tonight we are hoping to go the Mariners game with them, as another chance to hang out. Brandon works for Nintendo, and since Nintendo owns the Mariners, he probably can get some pretty good seats through work. Wendy is more of the baseball fan, though. She actually likes the Yankees (bonus points for Wendy) and when we were talking about crushes on athletes, she talked about how much she loved North Carolina's basketball team in years past (so many bonus points here, I can't even calculate).

The Bay Area is getting even cooler with these new additions.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Thank you Mrs. McGhee

My mom told me that she ran into Mrs. McGhee the other day. Ms. McGhee was not only my fifth grade teacher, but she also taught both of my sisters. Apparently, Mrs. McGhee recognized my mom and asked about her three daughters. After my mom gave her the update, Ms. McGhee sais something to the effect of, "I know that your daughters would go on to do great things." Well, Sarah and Melissa may have gone one to do great things, but right now the law isn't what I would classify as "great things." Anyway, I just made me think for a minute about the great things that my sisters are doing. I am bragging on them a little bit for the sake of Ms. McGhee.

First, there is Sarah. She is a genius. She just got her PhD in Molecular Physiology, which most people have no idea understand even what the name means. She is getting ready to move to Boston, where she was accepted to do post-doctorate research at Harvard University's medical school. That is just how smart she is. And I know that she is trying to do research that will actually be responsible for trying to make people healthier (even if I won't understand all of those technical terms that she uses in the articles in which she writes about her research). Not only is she a genius, but she also happens to be the fittest person I know. I mean, the girl always was an athlete (her awards at BYU for her athletic and academic abilities are just too numerous to list, but she was after all, the NCAA Woman of the Year for the entire state of Utah). Now, she is running ten miles a day, biking thirty, then swimming a few more on top of that, every day. She runs marathons, does triathalons, including Half Ironman's. It is only a matter of time until she does the full Ironman. She does more before 6:00 in the morning than I do all day.

Then there is Melissa. That girl has some guts. She quit the relative stability and safety of her job teaching sixth grade science to take a chance on what she really wants to do - save animals. That is brave. I mean, I may have won a poetry contest in third grade with my poem, "Loving Animals," and have written a play on saving manatees for my gifted class that was performed for McArthur Elementary School, but Melissa has taken it to the next level. And because she took a risk, she is working for the next year to save the severely endangered Attwater Prairie Chicken . In fact, she is working at the Attwater Prairie Chicken Wildlife Refuge in Southeast Texas to try to save a bird that there are only fifty left of in the wild. It makes me happy for those Prairie Chickens, because they have a pretty compassionate advocate and ally in Melissa. I can't think of anyone else that I would want trying to save me. I love that Melissa just took this huge risk to do something that she could be passionnate about.

So thank you Ms. McGhee for your excellent fifth grade instruction. Thank you also for pointing out what I always knew, that my sisters would turn out to do pretty remarkable things.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Support for my Fred Thompson Theory

"He seems to be closer to the conservative that I am," said Richard Bussa, 60, a Thompson supporter and retired newspaper writer from Minford, Ohio. "Playing on the police shows he's on, he does present a hard-nosed, law-and-order-type guy."

That quotation is directly from an article posted on Yahoo about Fred Thompson. People do get their opinions of Fred Thompson from the characters that he plays on SCRIPTED television shows. Sigh. This is a sad state of affairs.

(The article also discusses how men continue to not support Hillary Clinton, who I support for President, right now. Sexist jerks.)

Sunday, August 05, 2007

More thoughts on Jane

I was thinking about this Jane Austen thing a little bit more. Every so often, whenever I am in need of a quick gut check, I read my old journals. I read them because it makes me laugh and wince as to my general lack of optimism regarding past relationships and what my life would be in general. I read one of them this evening. The one that I read covered the unrequited crush that I maintained for many years on my friend, Blaine. Blaine is still one of the people that I admire most, and for many years he was the Mr. Darcy of my world, always unattainable, yet always commendable. After we went to Turkey, he became so idolized in my head, he was scarecely real. Instead of thinking in the general Christian mantra, What would Jesus do, in situations, I thought to myself, What would Blaine do? Although, this crush was generally not useful in terms of allowing me to see the good in people around me, because everyone that I met I compared to this idealized view of Blaine, at the same time, the best part of the crush was the part that I think explains why so many women love Jane Austen books so much. The crush really taught me how good people are capable of being, so if people were capable of being this good, then perhaps I was too.

The nature of how I came to idealize someone so much was very Austen-like, in its own way. Jane Austen never married so her idealized male characters like Mr. Darcy or Mr. Knightley have flaws, but she never really wrote about them in such a way to make their flaws seem in any way other than completely desirable (She rounded out the character, but even their flaws seemed to make them more perfect). Because I never had an actual relationship with Blaine, I never saw any other side of Blaine than the brilliant, thoughtful person who I believed would change the world. When the guys that I actually dated treated me poorly, cheated on me, etc., I could always fall back on my unrequited crush, because Blaine could never be the person that treated me (or in my mind anyone else) that way. That is the beauty of the unrequited crush, just as that is the beauty of reading of Mr. Darcy in a fictional book.

I think about truth versus fiction. I actually still think Blaine is a brilliant, thoughtful person who could change the world. Everyone needs their Jane Austen period pieces to make them sigh and think, "Oh, how lovely."

However, it is pretty good to finally find someone in my life that treats me well in reality, so that I no longer need an unrequited crush as my backup plan, to make me feel like there is good in the world when the person that I love makes me cry. I have always been an idealist, which makes me incredibly bothersome to deal with in relationships, because just as I want to be the perfect person, I want to be with the perfect person. But in reading my journal from five years ago, what I think that I have finally learned is that reality is always a little bit messy, but that is what makes it real. Experiencing the ordinary with someone, seeing their flaws, and allowing them to see yours is what makes a relationship tangible and not simply some fictional notion of perfection. Isn't that what Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy ultimately learned together?

Now Batting, third baseman Jane Austen. . .

My friends Tracy and Brigham would be proud of me. I went to three Seattle Mariners games in one week. The first game was last Saturday with our new friends Ryan and Cat. Then, we decided to go to the game on Wednesday night since the Mariners were playing the Angels, and they are trying to beat them and get to the top of the AL West Division. Then on Friday night, we decided to go again for two reasons - the Mariners were playing the Red Sox, and I love cheering against the Red Sox (I can't help it, I am still a Yankees fan), and Adam Jones, my favorite player from the Tacoma Rainiers got called up to play for the Mariners. We picked three good games to attend - the Mariners won all of those games. They didn't fare as well in the Red Sox games yesterday and today, nor in one of the other games in the Angels series. Although baseball is one of the sports I probably know the least about, I do enjoy Safeco Field on a warm, summer evening. Not only is it a perfect excuse to eat garlic fries and boo referees, but it is one of those American traditions I actually enjoy. I also enjoy thinking up insults in my mind for the insane number of Red Sox fans that pop up at a stadium even across the country from Boston. The worst thing about Sarah moving to Boston is that I think she will become a Red Sox fan. If she realized how many Red Sox fans I see that also wear Duke paraphanelia, maybe she would change her mind.

Pointless rivalries, people always like something to divide and distinguish them. I am such a hypocrite about this. Such a hypocrite.

So just to stay in touch with my feminine side, to divert myself from the mental taunts I composed, I also saw Becoming Jane this weekend. Although the movie was pretty much inventing a history for Jane Austen for which there is limited proof, I found it quite enjoyable. The thing that I find interesting is that so many people say that Tom Lefroy was her model for Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice, but if anything, his character in the movie seemed a little more Wickham than Darcy. But I guess he challenged Jane in the same way that Mr. Darcy challenged Elizabeth Bennet, so perhaps that is where the parallel is made.

What is it about contemporary American culture that leaves so many of us wishing that we were experiencing life through the lens of Regency Era England? Why does it seem so much more romantic than life in modern day America?

In the film, Jane played cricket. I watch baseball. That's really all I can say about it.