Archive for July, 2009

One of those memes that everyone does because our stalkers need to know what to get us for our birthday (Aug 19)

Although I can tell you what I’d like for my birthday flat out: a makeout session with my crush, who looks something like this:

geek-chex

However, hundreds of miles prevent me from fulfilling this, so I’m going to share this list with you instead. Because the Slackmistress was bored sweet enough to tag me and because I hit a lull in the work day like to share.

Now I’m supposed to tag 25 people on Facebook with this meme, but why should I just pick 25 when I’ve got all of you?

1. What time did you get up this morning?
The first time around was 6:35 AM. The second time was 7:15 AM.

2. How do you like your steak?
How I like my men: thick, hot, and cut.

3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema?
Transformers (after everyone else had already seen it and loved/hated it).

4. What is your favorite TV show?
The Simpsons! Been watching it for 20 years now.

5. If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
LA isn’t bad. New York is up there, though.

6. What did you have for breakfast?
Multi-vitamin from Trader Joe’s.

7. What is your favorite cuisine?
I agree with Nina on this one – food.

8. What foods do you dislike?
I’m not partial to a good chunk of seafood. Shocking, I know!

9. Favorite Place to Eat?
Anywhere with good food.

10. Favorite dressing?
This one nurse bandaged me up so well that I was scabbing in 24 hours!

11.What kind of vehicle do you drive?
I used to have a Beetle. Now I have a Jetta. I’m a VW kind of girl.

12. What are your favorite clothes?
My Threadless shirts.

13. Where would you visit if you had the chance?
Anywhere my foreign exchange students are now living.

14. Cup 1/2 empty or 1/2 full?
What’s in the cup? My answer depends on the contents.

15. Where would you want to retire?
Hawaii. Cliche, I know.

16. Favorite time of day?
That moment where the first bit of sun peaks its head above the horizon…
Pfft. Like I get up that early.

17. Where were you born?
Arlington Heights, IL.

18. What is your favorite sport to watch?
Can’t stand watching sports on TV. If it’s live I’ll watch just about anything.

19. Who do you think will not tag you back?
Most of you.

20. Who do you think will tag you back first?
Most of you.

21. Who are you most curious about their responses to this?
Most of you.

22. Bird watcher?
I’m more of a people watcher. But thank you for asking.

23. Are you a morning person or a night person?
I’m a night person trapped in a morning person’s schedule.

24. Do you have any pets?
I currently have the cremains of my pets.

25. Any new and exciting news you’d like to share?
Spending the weekend in San Francisco!

26. What did you want to be when you were little?
Tall. And smart.
You can’t get everything.

27. What is your best childhood memory?
Telling people that I had an older brother named Whiskey who was a golden retriever.
Announcing to the cashier at the grocery store that if you eat too many prunes you’ll have the runs after she scanned the bag.

28. Are you a cat or dog person?
Definitely a dog person. I like cats, but I’d take a bullet for a dog.

29. Are you married?
Nope.

30. Always wear your seat belt?
I’ve always been a safety girl. Seat belts save lives, people! I’m living proof of that.

31. Been in a car accident?
Been in 3; the last one has been the worst so far.

32. Any pet peeves?
Lack of basic spelling and punctuation in emails (unless used for ironic/hilarious purposes).

33. Favorite Pizza Toppings?
Mushrooms.

34. Favorite Flower?
Tie between plumeria and lavender.

35. Favorite ice cream?
Pumpkin.

36. Favorite fast food restaurant?
Depends on what I’d been drinking, who I’m with, and how much cash I’ve got.

37. How many times did you fail your driver’s test?
Once, but the DMV entered it as 3 times.

38. From whom did you get your last e-mail?
A co-worker.

39. Which store would you choose to max out your credit card?
Crate and Barrel. Sammy’s Camera. Blick. Anthropologie. MAC cosmetics. (As if I haven’t already.)

40. Do anything spontaneous lately?
Drove up to SF on a whim last month to say hi to some people.

41. Like your job?
It has its ups and downs.

42. Broccoli?
Always loved it.

43. What was your favorite vacation?
The year where my parents and I went to New York, Chicago, and Hawaii. That’s when I started to become aware of the dangers of eating on vacation.

44. Last person you went out to dinner with?
The Yellow Peril and a co-worker.

45. What are you listening to right now?
Corporate American background noises. And a truck rolling over my head.

46. What is your favorite color?
Green.

47. How many tattoos do you have?
None!

48. How many are you tagging for this quiz?
How many of you actually want to be tagged?

[where’s #49?]

Crud. I’ll make one up.

49. What would your last meal be if you were on death row?
Italian beef and a brownie sundae. I want them to deal with the mess after they execute me. *heh heh*

50. Coffee Drinker?
I am, but I’m trying to cut down. You could see the dark circles under my eyes before you saw my eyes.

Edited to add: Jesus, I caught myself making the same stupid typos that I was complaining about in #32. And shame on you people for not catching it!

Sold Seperately

A couple of weeks ago I wandered down to our IT department to grab the manager (one of the members of the Yellow Peril) for lunch. We were just walking out of the office when one of the switchboard operators bumped into us.

“Oh lovey, you two would make a cute couple,” she said in her heavy British accent.

The IT manager and I glanced at each other, then laughed and shook our heads.

“No way! He’s like my cousin,” I said.

“You two look very nice together,” she insisted.

“Nope. That would be incest.”

“I still think you two make a cute couple!”

That was the last thing she shouted at us as we rounded the corner to the elevator.

I realize that it could look cute when two people of different sex but similar ethnicities stand next to each other. Up until recently my whole family was comprised of Japanese people (I’d have to dig deep to find out we married into a Chinese or Russian family). However, as scandalous as it sounds, I like dating other races. The last Asian I went on a “date” with was back in high school and you can guess how that ended. (I think his mother was ready to talk about marital arrangements – creepy!)

I guess I could look good whenever I stand next to an Asian guy, but for the love of Buddha, please don’t assume that he’s the one. I’m not an electrical outlet made for a specific plug.

Unless you’re James Iha. Then I’ll marry you in a heartbeat.

Lame Claim to Fame

This was running rampant on Twitter yesterday, but I was too busy at work to fill it in. So instead, I’m going to share with you my lame claim to fame, laundry-list style.

1. My dad knew the LuPone family and was on a first-name basis with Patti.

2. My mom went to high school with Jeff Bridges. He used to try and copy her homework before class started.

3. The location where James Iha and I were born are smack next to each other. Not only is he still my biggest rock star crush, but what are the chances of finding a hot Japanese guy in the suburbs of Chicago?

4. One of my parents’ friends is a cousin of Anna Sui.

5. I am good friends of the guy who was the stand-in for Christopher Mintz-Plasse in “Superbad.” (We used to work together at the Grove!)

6. I am distantly related to this sake brand.

7. I once rang up Winona Ryder at the Grove. This was about 2 years after the big scandal (and no, she didn’t steal anything).

8. I once put some clothing on hold for Jeffrey Jones at the Grove. This was about a few months before the big scandal.

9. I helped Scarlett Johansson figure out where to have lunch at the Grove.

10. James Spader and I eat at the same place!

11. My uncle has done the set up for the following weddings: Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston; Christina Aguilera and Jordan Bratman; George Takei and Brad Altman.

That’s about all that comes to mind.

Happy Birthday, Mr. Williams

Today is Jamison’s birthday. I feel lucky to be one of the few people he still invites to celebrate with on this special occasion.

This year he turns 32; a month after his birthday I’ll turn 27. When we first met, he was turning 25 and I was about to hit the big 2-0. Retail would bring us together, even though we worked on different floors (I worked in Women’s and he worked in Men’s).

I jokingly call him my gay ex-husband. In the two years where we shared an apartment, we did the following:
1. Dealt with each other’s body gases.
2. Slept in the same bed occasionally, but no sex.
3. Had petty fights over dumb things.
4. Long discussions about the state of things (mainly the people at work).
5. Impromptu cocktail parties with co-workers.

What I like best about Jamison is that he keeps me in check. If I need to be brought down a peg (or ladder), he’s the one who can do it without emotional grief.

Lola's


So Happy Birthday, Jamison. May you keep your smart assed mouth even after dementia kicks in. :)

We Stand By Tradition

My current workplace prides itself on tradition.  Unlike other places that are similar to our industry, we don’t opt for fancy upgrades or modern apperances.  We stick with the classics.

Sticking with the classics doesn’t always mean it’s good.  I have a feeling that our company is one of the last major corporations to rely on Internet Explorer 6 and may be hinted at in this article. Heh.

If it were up to me, I’d have downloaded IE 8 onto my computer already. Unfortunately the system our company uses relies on IE 6 and IE 6 only. I made this discovery when I tried to complete a training program from home; the window told me that I would be better if I downgraded my internet capabilities so the program could run smoothly.

So on behalf of my company, I would like to apologize for holding back the internet from progressing.

In not-so-form-letter apologies, our bad.

Long Island Summers

I’m not dead! It’s been crazy the last couple of weeks.

You know who is dead though (besides Michael Jackson)? John F. Kennedy Jr, Carolyn Bessette Kennedy, and Lauren Gail Bessette. According to Wikipedia, today marks the 10th anniversary of the plane crash. And by pure luck, my mom and I were in Northport when it all went down.

Summer vacation was generous to me that year: the trip to NY would not only involve food, friends, and family, but it would also give me the opportunity to do the walking tour of NYU and NYFA. I couldn’t wait to soak up that New York air (even with the humidity).

The morning the announcement went out about JFK Jr.’s plane was a tough one for me. First, there was the 3-hour time change. Second, the windows only had a half-curtain and we were facing the east. Third, the lack of city noise (and my mom’s snoring) prevented me from falling asleep. It was a soft tapping at the bedroom door and my surrogate aunt came in. She was the one who told us what happened; we turned on the TV and switched to CNN.

And for the majority of that trip, we were glued to the TV. We still made it out to the city to do the tours and to eat, but we kept tabs on any new developments. We didn’t get out as much as I would have liked as the possibility of someone/something being found could occur at any moment. Even walking over to my surrogate grandma’s house didn’t include the usual cooking lesson and memory sharing – we still sat together, but the discussion was mainly focused on the incident and how awful it was when JFK was assassinated.

That trip makes me a little bit nostalgic, as that was the last time I saw my surrogate grandma alive.

It’s funny to think that 10 years have passed so quickly. I can recall it like it was yesterday, for lack of a better phrase.

Almost Kinda Sorta Famous

Before I joined the ranks of Corporate America, I was your typical LA teenager who aspired to have a career in the arts: I was going to be a screenwriter, I was going to make short films that had substance, and I would be the guitarist or bassist in a band that would be well known across Southern California. I started prepping myself for my chosen path: I took lessons at McCabe’s (where I would meet my long-term crush), I took scriptwriting classes, I took film history classes, I had small notebooks on me to draft ideas for scripts/songs…I even trekked out to the New York Film Academy for a quick tour of the campus. My compromise for a lack of “academic standing” would be to go to Tisch.

Unfortunately, things changed during college. I hated my scriptwriting teacher (she announced to the class on the first day that her Production partner went ahead with a project she had no faith in and lost $1 million out of her own pocket), my film history exams read like Jeopardy! questions, and band auditions were not what they were made out to be (but that’s what I get for answering Craigslist ads). My retail job was sucking the life out of me, so you can bet I answered the door when Corporate America came a-knocking.

But anywho!

Sometime last year I caught a glipse of this in an issue of Flavorpill. Usually I don’t pay attention to those ads, and the band’s picture didn’t ring any bells, but there was something familiar about the name Karabal Nightlife. So I went through my old blog to see if I had posted about a show of theirs.

It turns out I’ve never been to any of their shows.

Because I’d actually been solicited to do an audition back in 2004. And that email went a little bit something like this:

My names [band manager] and I am managing the L.A. rock band, the Karabal Nightlife. At this time, Karabal is looking for a permanent replacement bassist. The band has just finished recording their first EP and are eager to find a third member so that they can start playing out, etc.
I saw your profile here on [Make Out Club] and I was wondering if you would be interested, as we are currently setting up auditions. You can hear some rough demos at:
www.neumanali.com/karabal
If you are interested, please get back to me at [bandmanager]@[email].com. Hope that you like what you hear.
Best,
[band manager person]
Manager, Karabal Nightlife
Editor, WAKE Zine


I did go to the audition but it wasn’t great. My self-esteem dropped a bit when I finished. Here I’d been called on by a band, and I couldn’t sell it!

However, the lead singer’s parting words made me feel a lot better about not becoming their fourth person: the manager was the lead singer’s girlfriend.

No thank you.

Back to my original topic (which was seeing the band name in my inbox again)! The makeup of the band had changed: it used to be 4 guys, but from the looks of the picture it’s now cut down to 1 guy and 2 girls. And kind of indie dream-pop looking. I knew I was better off not being a part of that band.

I’m a much cooler person learning how to play the ukulele and working my way to becoming a blogger who has a readership in the teens.

But somewhere in my brain (and my heart), that could have been me in the band pic, playing a local venue and asking all of my friends to pitch in $5 and watch.

This Is Why I [Sometimes] Sleep With the Lights On

My dad has the knack of scaring the bejesus out of me. When I was a little kid, he’d hide behind doors and leave them slightly ajar; when I went to open the door fully, he would jump out and yell. This caused me to check through the door hinges or just push the door open with full force (something that I still do to this day). Sometimes he’ll start chanting in a low voice while we’re in the dark and it makes my skin crawl. And every now and then he’ll stick with the basics by pressing his face up against the kitchen window when it’s pitch black outside and the only light shinning is the bulb right above the sink.

Tonight he shared a story that now has me a little bit scared to sleep without a nightlight and my little stuffed dog.

An army acquaintance had just come back from Vietnam. He had been lucky in being stationed close to base camp; his troop had access to an actual latrine (as opposed to having to dig a community trench for everyone to use). One night, he found that he couldn’t “hold it” anymore (my dad guessed it was the beginnings of dysentery) and made his way carefully to the outhouse. Holding a flashlight concealed by his poncho, he was able to get to the toilet without getting shot.

As he relieved himself, the soldier heard a faint rustling nearby. On guard, he tried to figure out the direction of the sound – it was directly above his head. The soldier slowly brought his flashlight to the ceiling and was horrified at his discovery: above his head were swarms of tarantulas.

Apparently he burst out of the outhouse with his pants around his ankles.

Since my arachnophobia is still pretty strong, I couldn’t shake off the feeling that a swarm of tarantulas were slowly making their way towards me. I had a feeling that I’d have trouble sleeping with the lights out.

My dad made it worse by having his fingers make a crawling sensation on my arm in the dark while we were out watching the fireworks.

I can tell you right now that not only will I be sleeping with a light on tonight, I will also have a flashlight under the covers. You know, to throw at the tarantula that might be underneath my bed.

Edited to add: I also found a small spider nestled inside a basket of strawberries. Needless to say, I wasn’t able to fall asleep until 4AM.