Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Yes We Can!

I am so proud to be an American.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Has anyone else ever had this problem?

I work at a small company and, among other things, I answer the phones and route all calls from the main line. A few months ago I got a call from a telemarketer (you know how you can hear that they are calling from a giant room with other telemarketers around them talking on the phone?).
Anyway, he asked me for someone who's name I did not recognize and I told him there was no one by that name at our company. Then he was all "well, maybe it's his wife." ???? And kept pushing me to find someone who I had no idea about. So I asked him "Who's calling please" because maybe I could figure out where to route him so he could be better helped. And he said "Well, who are you?"



And this went around in circles until he finally mumbled his supposed name (Jerkface McBoogers, I presume) and of course I couldn't hear him and asked him to please spell it and he said "It's spelled exactly how you spell you name. WHAT IS YOUR NAME?"

Uh. So I transferred him off to someone who is way better at dealing with jerks and she told him off and to not call back. End of story, right? RIGHT?


I got a call just now from a telemarketer who asked me for another person I didn't know of. Usually when I tell a telemarketer I don't know who they are asking about, that is the end of things because they realize they will not get anywhere. But no. This guy got pushy with me and then was all "Who are you". At which point I realized who I was dealing with (why did he call again!) and responded "Who's calling please?" because, really, any legitimate person is going to identify themselves, right?

This went around in circles for a while until he blew up at me and YELLED (seriously, he actually yelled) "OH, COME ON!!!! BLAH BLAH SOMETHING SOMETHING..." Bitch, please.

I disconnected him.

Now I realize that I may be getting a call from this idiot every few months.

My question to you is:

What the hell is he doing?! Does this creepy-aggressive routine really work on people? Is that the best way to do business? What makes me the MOST angry is that I get the feeling that these scary intimidation tactics are how he approaches the people he calls if they are women. Like I'm stupid enough to transfer him to the president of the company when he won't even identify himself just because he yells at me. Which makes me wonder how he treats the women in his real life, assuming there are any (Probably not!). And all this makes me feel very Second-Wave Feminist and I also want to smash his sexist face down hard. But as he never tells me WHO THE HELL HE IS or WHAT THE HELL COMPANY HE WORK FOR I cannot GET HIS ASS FIRED for being an incompetent boob.

Crafting post to come, I swear.

Friday, August 1, 2008

My Garden

I have a few planters on my deck and after a month or two, these California poppies finally started to bloom!

You can also see a bell pepper growing on this plant! There's a few more smaller ones on the other side.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

This Means War

*this is not our oven

Our oven is totally possessed and evil. It has been acting up lately and only turning on sometimes, when it wants to. Now it is only broiling or something even when you set it to bake. It completely burns the top of stuff while the middle is still raw. Last night I was trying to bake a "lighter Pineapple Upside Down Cake" from a recent issue of Everyday Food and after all the preparation and flitting around the kitchen and chopping up a whole pineapple, the oven ruined my cake. I thought it was done, though kind of burnt, when I pulled it out to cool (the top was BLACK). But when I cut into it, the rest was LIQUID BATTER. I can't tell you how traumatic this was for me, seriously. I kept replaying it my mind like if I had seen body parts on the street after a car accident or something. After baking for 45 minutes, my cake was still batter (and also burned). I can't get over it. I also somehow accidentally baked a scratch ticket into the cake (?). Omar was searching all over the house for it, and he SWORE that he handed it to me. I do not remember this, but obviously I had it at some point because I BAKED IT INTO MY CAKE. Go figure.

Although the cake ended up in the trash, the ticket was miraculously salvageable. Omar said he rinsed it off and toasted it in the toaster oven (is this really a good idea?). We didn't win anything.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

New Sunglasses

They were like, $10 at Urban Outfitters. I love you new old lady sunglasses! Yes, I am wearing two pairs of glasses. That is how I roll. Sometimes when I am driving I wear sunglasses over my perscription glasses so I can see and (not) look cool at the same time. Whatever, Vogue seems to like it.

Make your own ridiculous pictures

I also love Angry Chicken.

Japan Catch-Up


(He's the one on the right!)

I have been back for about a week now, doing all the things you do when you think you are still on vacation. Omar's parents are in town for his graduation, which has made things doubly crazy/hectic, but fun.

So, as you can see I am so busy with my important life and all that I haven't been able to really get my head around my trip until now, sorry for the late posting.

I'm also going to apologize in advance for not taking enough pictures. I get all nervous and sweaty in public situations that involve cameras and me being by myself. And I always think that people are annoyed that I am standing in the middle of the road trying to take a picture of a crowded street (see below). But I tried my best! And also after a while I was enjoying myself so much that I forgot I was supposed to be documenting everything. So here are the results... Keep in mind that I am actually going back in December, so I promise I will try to make it (the lack of pictures) up to you until you are so overwhelmed with images of Japan that you will think you have actually been there already or something.


*view from the plane

My flight arrived about an hour before it was supposed to, so I had a lot of extra time on my hands. I was awake enough that I decided to venture into Tokyo after I checked into my hotel. BIG MISTAKE. It was a Sunday, and of course I was all "I think I'll go to Harajuku" since that's where I always go first. Note to self and readers - I have never been to Harajuku on a Sunday for a reason. It was wall-to-wall people EVERYWHERE, and you know how I hate people (well, you do now).

*Takeshita Dori, how I love thee (when you are not filled with other people)

After about an hour of meandering around feeling sorry for myself (and being to tired to correctly attribute the sorry-feeling to my jet lag) I moped back to my hotel. But not before I picked up some rice balls for Sunkus (a convenience store). Convenience store rice balls make up about 50% of the Reasons Why I Go to Japan.

*Shunned salmon on top, Sekihan on the bottom

I got a few different ones including a tasty one with beef kalbi in the middle and crunchy nori all around the outside that was sprinkled with salt (not pictured- chomped beforehand) and a sekihan one because I haven't had sekihan in forever. I also got a salmon one by mistake. (Note #2, I don't like salmon).

Then I fell into bed and slept for a few hours at a time until morning with the TV blaring Japanese news.


Monday, July 14, 2008

Wine for Puppehs

It's non-alcoholic, but still. (I love Japundit!)

P.S. Yes, I'm back.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Goodbye Japan!

I'm at the bus terminal in Sano, wating to get shipped off to Narita. I can't wait to see Omar and the dogs!

Leaving Tomorrow

Well, tonight is my last night in Japan. I'm all packed up and ready to go back to the Bay Area. One week is waaay too short a time when it involves me and Japan. I'll tell you all about my trip after I get home.



It's been super hot & humid the entire time I've been in Japan. So much so that it can be difficult to get to sleep at night. I picked this guy up at Loft in Shibuya. He's got a little ice pack that fits in his belly.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Ohira-san Shrine

Went to the shrine today. Gotta stock up on protection charms now that I have a car.

So It Works

And here are some redonk sockies I bought.

A Test

I know the pictures are pointlessly small, but bear with me! I am texting this in from my rental phone & I can't get them any bigger. I also just took me 8 years to type that with my thumbs.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

I Am Fully Aware That I Am An Insane Person

So I am dying for a Popo-chan doll. I know, I know. But seriously people, dolls are my thing. And Popo-chan's face is way too cute for me to not have one. So I have been obsessing, and finally sometime next week, we will meet. And I will have to make the hard decision of which Popo-chan gets to come back to America with me. It is taxing, but I think I can get through it all.

This Popo-chan is all about the hairstyling. There's also one that walks (which freaks me out, so I'm not getting that one. Look here and tell me that's not creepy. DO NOT WANT) and one that you can take IN THE BATH. But I am digging the snuggly-soft bodies, so I will probably skip on Bath Popo.

It doesn't help that all the babies around me are, although cute and wonderful, BOYS. Someone have a girl that I can play with and spoil! Please?


Things are looking up...

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Japan Trip Looming

Above is a hankie I embroidered for my mom for Christmas and finally got a photo of! I got the pattern from issue #3 of Stitch Idees. I used a fabric marker to fill in the tail and ears.

My trip to Japan is slowly creeping up on me and already things are starting to go wrong! I reserved a rental cell phone a few months ago hoping to email daily blog posts in with pictures from my trip. Yesterday I got an email from the company informing me that they might not be able to supply me with the type of phone I requested, since they have been deluged with orders thanks to the G8 Summit. Hopefully this will be the last inconvenience, but these things tend to come in threes...

I'm also a little bit trepidacious (blogger does not think this is a word) about having my fingerprints taken at customs. Don't worry, I'm not a felon or anything. I just feel a little bit conspiracy-theory prone at the idea of being tracked by foreign governments. Look out! It is also totally going to kill my international spy fantasies that keep me entertained while I wait in the non-nationals line to have my passport stamped. Sigh.

Anyway, I'm crossing my fingers that the phone thing will work out and I can entertain my reader(s) with photos from abroad, in realtime. Otherwise, it will just be a few MASSIVE posts when I get back a week later.

I also made this apricot tart. Soooooo good. It ended up accidentally being my own birthday cake.

Friday, May 23, 2008


I didn't want to post without a picture, so here's a 9 foot mirror ball at my work.

I sure took my sweet time to fill this out, but here it is. Anna sent it to me a while back and I've finally got around to doing it (sorry!). I feel a little self conscious tagging anyone, but I guess that's how it works. If you don't want to fill it out, that's ok too...

4 jobs I've had:
Cashier - Cody's Books
Japanese Language Tutor
Game Advisor - EB Games
Office Manager - Impact Lighting

4 favorite movies:
Star Wars
Empire Strikes Back
Return of the Jedi

4 places I've been:

4 places I've lived:
Berkeley, California
Tochigi, Japan
Hangzhou, China
London, England

4 favorite tv shows:
(This is an "at the moment" kind of list for me)
The Office
Home Movies
30 Rock

4 favorite radio programs:
1Up Yours
This American Life
Radio Lab
Japan Talk

4 favorite foods:
Things with pastry cream in them (like these)

4 places I'd rather be:
Japan (duh)
Puerto Rico
At home

Food Counts
Girl on the Rocks

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Pretz Vs Stix

Has anyone else seen these new Pringles Stix? Having been a longtime fan of Glico Pretz, I was a bit surprised to see some so-called "Stix" at the grocery store the other day. I wonder if Pringles paid for the rights to market Pretz in the states, or if they just stole the idea, packaging, and appearance of the snacks. They come in the same little individual bags inside the box. I hope Pringles has some kind of overseas marketing deal with Glico. If so, they could probably get access to around 7 billion Pretz flavors to sell in the US. I'm serious. The ones I'm holding above are Meets Wine, kind of a roasted cheese flavor, and Melon Bread, a tasty sweet cookie-ish one from their new "Bakery" line. Yum!

In other news, I'm planning a trip to Japan in July! I arrive in Tokyo on Sunday, July 6th and I'll be there until the 13th. I bought a moleskine and I've been putting together my own travel book by copying down directions, printing out maps, and looking up the operating hours of store I want to visit. Expect craft debauchery when I get back. I'll only be in Tokyo two days and then I'll head up to Tochigi to stay with my host family for the remainder of the trip. I can't wait! I have a pretty comprehensive list, but let me know of any Tokyo Craft Shopping suggestions you might have.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Passport Cover

I made this passport cover for my mom's birthday.

I think I got the fabric from Superbuzzy and you can find the tutorial for the cover here. So simple! I need to make one for myself ASAP. Reasons why in the next post.

UPDATE: Wow! Thanks to Karrie for letting me know!

Puerto Rico Trip

I've been back from Puerto Rico for a while and have got lazy about posting. I didn't want to let myself post about anything until I got the PR post out of the way, for purposes of documentation. The only things is, our visit was so frenzied that I wasn't able to take many pictures. And the time that we were relaxing, we were at the beach (sans camera). So I'm going to whizz through what I have and get it over with!

Beans came with us and was fairly well-behaved on the plane ride back home (we will not speak of the plane ride to PR). It seems like air travel has put car-anxiety into perspective for her.

We went to Guavate to get real Puerto Rican food, which involves a lot of rotisserie pigs.

A trip to Puerto Rico would not be complete for me without a trip to Gaby Mini Donas outside the Humacao Walmart. They are tiny donuts that they fry right in front of you.

Omar got a giant egg, ham, and cheese sandwich for three dollars that he did not stop talking about for two weeks.

When we got home we made BBQ'd oysters, salad, and grilled baby zucchini for dinner. We also got these gigantic oysters from Berkeley Bowl that were bigger than my hand!

As you can see, when we weren't swimming we were mostly preoccupied with food.

The END! Now, to post new things!

Friday, April 4, 2008

A Beany Dress

This was one of those things that hit me at around 11 o'clock at night where I absolutely have to start it right now. I was just lounging around and thinking about getting ready for bed when I realized I really needed to make Beans a dress. Like, right NOW. I'm sure there are some of you that can understand this crafting bug.

So I pulled out a couple of doggie patterns I snagged the last time Joann's had a 99 cent sale. There were some cute jammies, dinosaur costumes, etc. But I think you'll agree, Beans needs a dress. The problem was that all the dress patterns were hideous pink things covered with lace, sparkles, and fluffy petticoats. No. Beans is scrappy. She doesn't do lace.

I usually can only picture my craft projects very literally and I am very open to suggestion. This means that when I see some things I want to make, I have to make it exactly like the picture or else. But I decided to "wing it" and pick out whatever that hell fabric I damn wanted for Beans' dress and I settled on some cute Bear fabric from Japan. I think I got it from Superbuzzy, but I can't find it anymore on their site.

I picked out the least complicated dress pattern and eliminated the sheer overskirt (I mean, PLEASE). The pattern also calls, of course, for lace on the sleeves, neckline, and skirt hem. This is not going to happen. I almost stopped there, but I pulled myself together and instead fashioned a plain ruffle from some yellow remnant fabric. I put a ruffle on each sleeve and on the hem of the dress, eliminating the one along the neckline. Then I topped it off with a matching sash around the waist! (Actually, I had some difficulty sewing the bodice to the skirt and the resulting stitches weren't very straight, so the sash is really a handy cover up). Here's a close up of the sash:

At one point I sewed on some snaps to close the dress. I kind of already knew that wouldn't work, but the closure was the only thing left and I really wanted to be finished. Of course, the dress totally didn't stay closed while Beans was wearing it, so I sent Omar out on a velcro-errand while I was at work.

Voila! Beans in her Bear dress!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Cooking Out of Everyday Food

Oh, how I love that magazine. Omar and I are on a diet for a week and I am H-A-T-I-N-G it. So much. You do not even understand. We went to the corner store to get lunch and I walked past a display of 50% off morning buns. Half-off, people. The swirly cinnamon-bun-esque kind with sugar all over. And I walked out with some carrots and an onion. Sigh.

So I decided to take a look back at the past few weeks, which were filled with good eats. I got all inspired by last month's issue of Everyday Food and had to make almost everything out of it.

I made Lemon-Ginger Bundt Cake for the office (and also snagged a sizable chunk for myself in the process). I am so not good at remembering to take pictures before slicing things up and eating at least half of what's there.

Portobello, Broccoli, and Red Pepper Melts. These can't be that bad for you, besides all the bread. The Gouda we used was really not about the melting, though. It kind of ended up like little cheese-mochi squares. Not bad - but not really very melty. Interesting fact - according to the spelling dictionary, "melty" is not a word.

I made use of my new King-Size Muffin Pan with the very tempting recipe for Banana Cupcakes. This was actually kind of disappointing. The frosting was OK, but not stellar. As for the muffin/cupcakes themselves, I really have way better recipes for banana bread that would have worked fine and I would rather have eaten. Also, do not waste you money on the custom baking cups for this pan. They are the worst baking cups I have ever used. I seriously think that half of the cupcake ended up on the paper and not in my tummy. Also a LOT of the paper ended up on the cupcake, which is much worse. Next time I will be greasing the pan itself, even though it's a pain.

This here Apple-Cinnamon Upside-Down Cake is actually from a previous issue, though I forget which one. I could seriously eat this whole cake by myself in one sitting, it is so good. I guess that's why I'm on a diet...

Friday, February 22, 2008

Panna Cotta and Old Crafts

I made the BEST PANNA COTTA OF MY LIFE the other day. I topped it with some homemade berry sauce. Delicious! It may not look like much, but the lighting in my office isn't that great for blog pictures. That's right, I took this for lunch. I mean, buttermilk is good for you, right? It was perfect, with only a hint of gelatin, and really simple to make. So good. I found the recipe here.

Also, here is an Arrested Development inspired pillowcase I embroidered for a friend recently.