Tuesday, May 30, 2006

spring break '06

8 girls. 2 rental cars. No drama. Unbelieveable, yes?

We're back and bronzer than ever thanks to that quick jaunt to the beach. I'll have to do a quick recap sans-pictures because I relied heavily on our master photographer Lisa to capture most of the Kodak moments.

Friday afternoon Emily, Sarah, Mary Anna, Rhonda, Mandy, Lana, Lisa, and myself departed from Brentwood Baptist Church at approximately 4:15 pm. Rocky Toppys in-hand (that's Lana-speak for walkie-talkies) we synchronized our cd players and started the Florida 06 mix that Emily created at the same time as we headed south on I-65. My car (in the lead) was instantly nicknamed the Little Corolla that Could as it lurched forward whenever I put my foot on the accelerator. nu=3268>244>:7:>WSNRCG=32337966794;9nu0mrj">

Friday night was spent in Birmingham where we invaded Em's friend Ann Wade's house. her roommate was such a good sport at having 8 unknown, loud, giggley girls as guests for a night. After a lengthy dinner at Chili's, we headed back to the house and probably laughed off every calorie that we ate. A few funny moments from Friday night:
* I enjoyed a nice big slice of humble pie- Amanda
* All the drinks here look like they're exploding- Sarah
* Amanda, are you done with that?- Lana
* Lana's hair-mayonnaise- fried chicken story
* Awkward Will
* Ok, I'll tell one on myself- Ann Wade's roommate Sarah told me she went to Samford with Ann Wade but she was originally from Ar-Kansas. I said totally deadpan, where is that? At first everyone thought I was kidding, then they died laughing when they realized I was not. Of course she meant Arkansas, but I was thinking like Florala or Texarkana- like maybe it was a town that bordered between Kansas and Arkansas.

Saturday we hit the road at 6:15 am and after 5 stops in 5 hours we finally pulled into our condo and ravenously devoured our sandwiches that we had purchased just minutes earlier from a nearby overpriced deli. We were on the beach by 12:30 that day, and spent the rest of the day soaking up the sun. That night we got all gussied up and waited an hour and a half to eat at the famous local dive, the Red Bar. I have to say, the food was amazing and well worth the wait. Amongst our group we tried almost all of the 7 menu choices, and left there completely stuffed and exhausted. The idea had been of course to have dinner and then go out dancing or someplace fun, but we unanimously agreed that we were all too tired to go anywhere else! So much for us old fogies, huh?nu=3268>244>:7:>WSNRCG=323379667;969nu0mrj">


Sunday morning I awoke chompin at the bit to get on the beach- and yes, I detest that phrase, but I can't describe my insatiable anticipation in any other way! I hit the beach by 9:15, the other girls joined me a little after 11. We spent a glorious day in the sun and sand, taking walks, gabbing from our circle of towels, and playing in the ocean. Lisa, our unofficial trip photographer, got zoolander face poses and individual shots of each of us on the beach, and convinced several passer-byers to take group shots for us, none of which had ever seemed to have operated a digital camera before.
After showers, some frozen margaritas made by yours truly, and a dance party in the kitchen, we headed to Publix for a few more groceries, and across the street then this kitschy seafood house where we stuffed ourselves with hush puppies, fried shrimp (minus me & Lisa, the non-seafood-eaters), and french fries. Another night had come and gone- all ideas of making brownies and watching movies were dashed as we all ending up falling into bed before 11 o'clock that night. Must have been all that heavy fried food... yeah... that's it. nu=3268>244>:7:>WSNRCG=3233796696373nu0mrj">

Monday- Memorial day- most everyone hit the shops at Seaside, while Lana and I made one last visit to the beach before we rolled out of Seagrove Beach at 11 am. We stopped at the first place we came to to grab some lunch, along with every other departing vacationer, at the most shady Subway and Hardee's that we had ever seen. In fact, every single place we stopped on Monday was sketchy, nasty, and run-down, but with 8 girls on a road trip, you're bound to have to make some stops, and can't always be picky about when and where those stops occur! nu=3268>244>:7:>WSNRCG=3233796684;6

I will leave you with my own personal favorite anecdote from the weekend, as I'm sure Em and MA will grace us with their own recollections as well:

I asked Lana if she would put sunscreen on my back, that I would return the favor and put sunscreen on her back. She said in her purposely-funny voice, well, I don't know- you put sunscreen on Mary Anna's back yesterday and um, well, she burned.
What?! I exclaimed? That is totally sadistic of you! I screamed while laughing. There is no way I did that on purpose.
Yes, well, it's just that you don't apply the sunscreen very liberally, she said.

And apparently several of them had already had this discussion before I was around, to which Emily replied- yeah, that's about the Only thing that Amanda's not liberal with!!

I hope to add pictures soon, but at least the trip in review is now complete! Snap back to reality, oh, there goes gravity...

Friday, May 26, 2006

Beach or Bust

T-minus 2 hours till Spring Break '06!

My, oh my, how the trips have grown. My first year out of college Rhonda and I took our first annual beach trip which we dubbed Spring Break '04. She and I met her mom & Sam down in Watercolor, FL and stayed in this multi-million dollar beach condo for free. I met my Navy boy Blake, and Rhonda "drank a watermelon."

Last year's trip grew to 5- ha- 5 in 05. Me, Rhonda, Mary Anna, Emily, and Lana went to Blue Mountain Beach & Ft. Walton. It was at our overnight stay with Aunt Peggy in Birmingham that Lana made her famous quote from the trip, "I need to start collecting something." We met and photographed the Rhinestone Cowboy for TAR, and also met our ideal man in Wild-At-Heart Brad at The Back Porch (who we STILL talk about!!)

This year the spring-breakers have grown to an astounding 8 girls. At 4pm today myself, Rhonda, Lana, Emily, Mary Anna, Mandy, Sarah, & Lisa will depart from our rendevous point at BBC and head to Seagrove Beach. What will this year's infamous quote be? What funny stories and inside jokes will ensue? What Beach Boy will catch our eye? Who will come back bronzed and who will come back burned?

Stay tuned for all this and more in our vacay re-cap next week, and have a happy and relaxing Memorial Day weekend!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Soul Patrol or McPheever?

It's about that time- who will be crowned the next American Idol? If it had been up to Simon, Taylor Hicks would never have even made it to Hollywood! Honestly when I began watching the show a few months ago I could never have predicted that he would have made it to the Finals (Chris Daughtry, we miss you!). On the flip-side, I pinpointed Katherine as a really good singer from the first episode I saw.

This show is addicting and will take up 2 of your weeknights all tv season once you start watching. Thank goodness for TiVo since I'm never home when the show is actually on!

I must say that by the Finale (which is tonight- get with it, people!) most viewers already know who they want to vote for. I doubt there were many who waited to hear all 3 performances last night before finally deciding whether to cast their votes for Kat or Taylor. The next step of course is actually getting through to vote. I tried several times within that 4-hour block and never could get through on the phone. I also happen to be one of the fortunate Cingular customers who have the luxury of voting via text message. Even that was an impossibility last night it seemed. Out of the 10-20 text messages of "VOTE" that I sent, I only received one reply confirmation that my vote was received. So I'm wondering if only one of mine counted, and all that other hassle was for naught.

Most of the time I actually agree with Simon Cowell, though I can't say that I would be quite so blunt in my commentary. Awful jacket, Taylor- yes, I agree. Amazing Somewhere over the rainbow, Katherine? Yes- agreed. And his opinion that the rounds looked like this:

round one: Taylor
round two: Kat
round three: Taylor

was right on the money. I was surprised however that Simon didn't criticize the original songs more, though I guess he has been warned not to offend the song writers. Even still, Katherine butchered hers more than Taylor did. BUT, as a singer even I could see that Katherine was unfairly dealt the more difficult song, with a melody that jumped all over God's creation and was written in a terrible range for her. As bad as she sounded, I actually felt sorry for her since she didn't have a say in the song choice.

My pick is Taylor. Let's see what the rest of America decides.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Anita Returns

Can I rant and vent for a moment? It is a Friday. Our slowest work day of the week. Lots of our customers work for churches and Fridays are their days off. So I expect it to be slow- but this is just ridiculous. I have Zero orders for the day. Meaning that my daily sales goal of a few thousand dollars? Yeah, I have None of it. No orders. And while yes, my mind has wandered and I don't have as many calls out as it might be possible to have, I do have as many as I have had in an entire before, and I still have 2 hours to go. What gives?!

And on top of that, a bookstore called me "Anita." After Beth and I were Just joking about being called Steph and Anita- and it hasn't happened to me in a long time. But do they order any music? No of course not. But they did call me Anita. My day is now complete.

PS, I realize the total irony of venting on here when I could be calling out, trying to drum up some sales. but in my defense I am typing very quickly and this post took about the total of 3 minutes to write.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

things that make you go hmm

"Well I realize that falling isn't graceful
But I thank the Lord that falling is full of grace"

from The Chasing Song by Andrew Peterson

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

RENT: not just a favorite Broadway musical- it's also a reason to gather on a dreary afternoon!

Why are things always funnier when 2 or more or gathered? Or even more accurately, why are things always funnier whenever Lana is around?

Our Memorial Day beach trip is coming up soon (aka Spring Break 06) (shut up. We can still pretend we're in college and get a spring break. I AM 21 you know!) After MUCH deliberation, we decided to rent 2 cars to tote the 8 of us to our tropical destination. However, due to the youth that plagues (blesses?) half of our vacationers, only 4 of us are 25 and are of-age to drive the rental vehicles without incurring extra charges. Fine. Not such a big deal. 2 cars, 4 drivers. We'll split the trip into 2 halves for the drivers, of which I am one. The other Grandmas of the group include Lana, MA, and Rhondonkulous.

MA and I each rented a car in our names, but the 4 drivers met up today at the Enterprise office to take care of the paperwork and get the other 2 drivers' information on file with the rental car company. Hurdle number 1 to overcome: we cannot find the place. It's located in "No Man's Land" as Rhonda put it, on Mallory Lane in Brentwood, but on the other side of Moores Lane (away from Target). This side of Mallory is really short, so I didn't figure that finding a rental car place, its sign, and a parking lot full of rental cars would be that difficult to spot. Of course I was wrong in my thinking. MA was the first of us to spot the tiny sign so she directed us via cell phone- in our defense it wasn't marked from the road, and there was no sign of a parking lot full of rental cars anywhere- they must drive them over from another location- but whatever.

Flustered from driving up and down the street a few times, I get out of my car at the same time as Rhonda, and we realize that we are dressed like twinkies. Brown long-sleeved shirts, tan striped pants, and brown heels. Great. So now we walk into Enterprise dressed like tweedle-dee and tweedle-dum. MA comes in the door seconds later. We are giggling and are easily the loudest people in the small rental office. (Imagine that!) A few minutes later Lana shows up. We crack up b/c Lana has parked in the owner's vacated-but-clearly-marked reserved space. But Rhonda and I couldn't really say much, b/c we both parked in the only other open spots that were marked for the adjoining collision center. As Rhonda and I are modeling our matching outfits for Lana, Rhonda and I bump heads which sends us in to fits of more giggling. We discover that the 4 of us are all in brown actually. I'm sure the employees in there feared for their cars, thinking, what ditzes! We are renting cars to Them?! The 4 of us awkwardly stand at the front of the office while no less than 4 female employees go about their business, ignoring us completely- and we were being pretty hard to ignore!

Finally a cute & single (we know this b/c MA checked his wedding band finger) guy asked us if we had been helped yet. Actually no, we haven't been helped yet, we tell him. He proceeds to playfully scold the female associates, and we muddle our way through misunderstanding after misunderstanding to get all of our rental stuff taken care of. It actually was a surprisingly uncomplicated process, but focusing on the task at hand was difficult to do. Yes, we clarified, we've already rented the cars online. No, we don't already have the cars in our possession. Then Lana couldn't find her license (You'd better have it I said, otherwise, why are we here?), then the guy did a double-take at Rhonda's license b/c she looks so different now from her picture. Really, we made such a scene in there that I'm wondering if they were all second-guessing their decision to allow us to rent cars from their company, and I was wondering what kind of option they would have to retract our rental contract and declare us unfit drivers!

Maybe this was one of those Tadd YHTBT moments, but I walked out of that place thinking, why do things like this always happen to us? It's never that simple as we think it ought to be!

pink hitting

Yet another reason I like baseball! For Mother's Day yesterday Louisville Slugger had pink bats made for the players in honor of a kickoff for the Susan G Komen breast cancer awareness week. Players also wore pink ribbons, wristbands and the lineups were even written on pink paper.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

the McWeekend in review

It occurred to me today that I haven't posted any random blogs lately about things that have no conjuncture with my own personal life, so I promise to scrounge up something good in the next few days. For now you'll have to settle for my usual weekend update. This one was a good one- full of stories and laughter and new inside jokes from all those involved. (You who witnessed the Roadhouse Tea debacle, you know who you are, and that's all I'm sayin')

Friday started out with a bang. We were culminating the birthday celebration for Maury by heading downtown to Robert's on Broadway for what was dubbed "Hats and Boots Night." But a girl's gotta eat right? So Beth, her husband Daniel, Maury, and myself met at Logan's for dinner since Laura was working that night. She's always in the bar area on Friday nights which means the tables are first-come-first-serve, so I got there a few minutes early to try and stake our claim on one of Laura's tables so the others wouldn't have to wait as long once they arrived.

The timing worked out perfectly- Maury arrived, and a few minutes later this one table paid their check and Laura informed me they'd be getting up soon and to watch for them to leave. The second they started to leave, Maury and I walked a few feet towards the table, allowing the bus boys to clean the table off first when this lady with awful hair slid into the booth in front of my very eyes!!! I was in utter disbelief! Where the heck did she come from? I had no idea, but I was about to find out. The lady kind of glared at me triumphantly as I stood there and picked up my jaw from the floor, and I stated to her very matter of factly,
"Ma'am, I was waiting for this table."
And she replied, "sorry, it's first come first serve."
"Yes, I'm aware of that," I said, "but my sister is the server and I have been standing over here (I gestured) for 20 minutes waiting for this particular table to get up."
Mind you, the lady could have sat at any other table in the bar area, whereas Laura only has certain tables in her section that she's responsible for, so I had to wait for another of her tables to open up. I could feel the heat rising in my neck and face and had Maury not been there to pull me aside I probably would have sat down at the table across from her and beaten her to a pulp- or else attacked her with vicious rhetoric (name that movie!!). So back I went to my spot where I had been standing in the bar before to wait for the next of Laura's tables to open up.

By this time Beth & Daniel arrived, so fuming, I tell them what just happened. What really burned me up was that 2 seconds after I relinquished the table against my will another table in the bar emptied, but by that time it was too late. Not too much longer after this, Laura's next table opened up which happened to be next to the awful woman with unfortunate hair, so I said loudly to anyone who would listen, and I hope this woman and her husband were,
"Thanks Laura, this is the best table in the entire restaurant!!"
I know. It was a cheap shot, and I should have let it go, but come on!!! What decent person wouldn't be a little more understanding??? I mean, it was my sister's table, and the table-snatcher had to have seen me walking towards that table before she got to it- it's not my fault she was rude and slid into the booth while I was trying to be considerate of the bus boys to try and let them do their job! What do I get for being considerate I ask you? A rising blood pressure, and a desire to drink.
The Roadhouse Teas happen to be excellent at Logan's, but let me warn you that one is sufficient. Two is too many, especially if one does not eat their dinner. I learned that the hard way Friday night and provided entertainment for all with my antics. Maury and I headed to Robert's where we donned our hats and danced the night away. The place was extremely packed- I guess our guys are not the only ones in Nashville who are fans of the house band, the Brazilbillies.

Saturday a bunch of us went to Thompson Station Church to see Maury D and the Shanks (aka Maury, Adam & John) play at this craft fair the church was hosting outdoors. It was a gorgeous day here in Middle Tennessee (I had many a sungasm this day) so after the music was over and I perused the craft booths a little bit, I headed home to help out with yardwork. We sang out annual "Mulcho Man" song while we weeded and mulched, and had an amazing dinner that night after a hard day of work of grilled hamburgers, baked beans, coleslaw and french fries outdoors on the deck. This was the first outdoor meal of the season- the first I hope of many.

Saturday night Em & I watched a few episodes of Grey's Anatomy on dvd (season one) and then we all got together tonight for part one of the season finale at the Penthouse. Commercial breaks were spent talking about how hot McDreamy, Denny, and were. Also we discussed the implications of Izzie's actions, and who we think needs to be together on the show. Yes, I realize they are not real people but when you're watching this show and all 5 of us let out audible screams as the episode ends ("the scream heard 'round the world"), you start to realize it's not just a show! You actually care about these people- erm- I mean- characters.

We concluded our Mother's day by standing around the Penthouse kitchen enjoying some birthday cake for Karen's birthday. Rhonda bought it and it was a small sheet cake. Of course this led to countless sheety jokes. Such as being full of sheet, the cake was brown sheet, us talking sheet, and my personal fav, holy sheet (since it was a Sunday). I am exhausted now. And I'm sure that if you made it to the end of this blog too that you're exhausted from reading. Cheers and good night!

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Cirque du Snore'

Last night I took Mom to see Cirque du Soleil Delirium as a birthday present. Rhonda and Em also went, so I'm curious to hear their take on the show. I'll admit, I was interested to see what all they hype was about with these multimedia performances, but I didn't know much about it. I knew there would be music, lights, and acrobatics, along with over-the-top costumes. I could not have predicted however how new-agey it would really be, and how the droning drum beats and unitelligable lyrics would put me straight to sleep! I'd nod off to a blue screen with a bright blue orb hovering over the stage and wake up to have people floating in white fabric and twirling around. Then I'd go back to sleep and awaken to find a woman spinning multiple hoola hoops around her. The 4 guys doing the acrobatics and gymnastics that I awoke in the middle of was pretty amazing but my eyelids were so heavy by that point in the show that it was pointless to try and act like I was paying attention so I just closed my eyes again! I bet that was seriously the single most expensive nap I have ever taken!
The opening act was enough to set the scene that I shoudl have realized what I was going to be in for that evening- a European singer/songwriter by the name of Nitza- as in- we are the Knights who say Niiiiitza!!! She gyrated and bellydanced while she yodeled to her mohawkwed percussionists and Citar player's music. I think I payed enough attention to give you a quick recap and impression of her performance:

"Thank you. Thank you. You are so kind (only because I know you are not leaving because you payed good money to see the main act...) My next song is called, this sounds like every other song I have performed so far."

At least after seeing this show I can answer the burning question that everyone has been wanting to know- what happened to Scary and Baby Spice? They or their Bizaro-twins are apparently touring with this Cirque production!

Monday, May 08, 2006

Team Kairos

Team Kairos won by default yesterday with a forfeit from the other team- I guess that puts us at 2-1 for the season. BBC friend Photo Joe came to the game and took several shots of our team and the other BBC team in action. Check out his page to see more of his work. Here's yours truly, Pinky McPinkerson in my trademark pink Kentucky hat. Yes, that's me chasing the ball to make a play at home. Actually, the runner stayed on 3rd, so I didn't have to tag anyone out. Good thing for that runner cause I would have gotten them O-U-T- Out!

Here's a shot of our fan section- they braved the cool weather to cheer us on in what ended up being a scrimmage against the other team plus a few of our own BBC players, which was amusing except for the ones who took themselves and their game a little too seriously. Come on people. This aint the majors. We're playing church softball.

We pray after every game. Check out that hot number 5 and her stocky white legs! EEK! Guess we'll have to take care of that pastiness in a few weeks when we head to the beach!

Friday, May 05, 2006

the Ladies Senor

So yesth. Bathically I am hyper becauth it ith Cinco de Mayo and I just got back from a yummy lunch at Blue Coast Burrito. Follow my train of thought from the Ladies Man movie quote, "Heyyyy baby, can I buy you a fisth sandwich or something?" and replace it with the mexican version- "heyyyy seniorita, can I buy you a fisth taco or somethin?" (Blue Coast Burrito is known for their famous fish tacos. I'm not one to be partial to seafood so you'll have to take Beth or Cody's word for it that these are indeed delectable)

We laughed our way through lunch, and I am getting geared up for a night with the girls eating mexican food, drinking margaritas and watching season one of Grey's Anatomy on dvd. This sounded like a better option to the masses rather than salsa dancing, which is what we had originally planned on doing.

The extra fun bonus for the day was that I uploaded a ton of new music on my itunes this morning at work, so how can one be in a bad mood when you've got Beyonce to dance to in your cubicle?

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

How Kaavya got her signing bonus taken back

Poor girl. She had it all. A two-book deal. A fledgling Harvard education. A knack for plagiarism. whoops. Guess now there won't be a follow up to Kaavya Viswanathan's "How Opal Mehta Got Kissed, Got Wild, and Got a Life" (which PS, ranks up there with "How Stella Got Her Groove Back" for worst titles ever) Apparently the Harvard sophomore had more than just an admiration for books such as Sophie Kinsella's "Can You Keep a Secret?" Or maybe she just figured that imitation was the highest form of flattery and the best way to make some mad cash while she attended her prestigious university. Whatever the case, it makes me laugh at her expense, and reminds me of the time that Heather got caught (unintentionally of course) (cough, cough) plagiarism the story of Sam and his argyle socks, only to have the story read by the author of the aforementioned book at a writing competition in the 8th grade. Oh how we laughed! Well at least I did. I think Heather is able to laugh about it now.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Birthday Shout Out

Happy 22nd birthday to my adorable little sister! It seems like it was just yesterday that I was playing baby doll with you and yelling at you to lie still while I covered you up with a blanket, only for you to kick it right back off!!!

Who's ready to open some fun presents and eat yummy Italian food??? Love you, Lulu