Monday, November 8, 2010

Burning Party

I didn't think I was that dramatic of a person...but Saturday my Mom and stepdad Scott found me out back ripping old love letters out of their plastic page protectors and hurling them into one of those old metal garbage cans that doesn't come up any higher than your thigh. When they realized what I intended to do (and that there was pretty much no stopping me), Scott ran to get a grate to cover the can to minimize the ash-spewing and my mom tried to rationalize that the whole process would be good for me--cathartic. You know, letting my past stay just where it should--in the past.

I was surprised at how hard it was at first. I kept trying to rationalize the keeping of certain letters or certain recuerdos, justifying that they were parts of my history and that they might "make it into my writing someday." But when I saw the flames kicking up their legs higher and higher into the air, I kinda just let loose and tossed in everything---photos, notes, hand-drawn pictures... And then the tears started coming. Not too many. A few trickles that were wiped quickly away. I almost lost the nerve about a tenth of the way into the process, but two people saved me: my old boss Bruce and then Matt.

Bruce happens to be my back-door neighbor and strolled through the gate separating our yards to say hello. When he saw the semi-large bonfire emitting forth from the garbage can, he jokingly asked, "Whatcha burnin'? Love letters?" When I answered in the affirmative, his face blanked, unable to find anything appropriate to say. So he mumbled something about how sometimes we need to just let the past go, and returned through the still-open red gate to return to his mowing.

And when Matt walked into the backyard and came over and just wrapped his arms around me, I knew I was doing the right thing. My future looks much brighter than any flickering spark a past momento could hope to incite in me.

I did feel kinda like a mad-woman though, at the end of it all---hair blowing in the wind, poking at the flames, reeking of smoke. It was a good weekend.

I sure do like this geek-boy!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Skinny Jeans

Apartment 17 is finishing up Week 2 of the Biggest Loser competition, and Jeralyn and I are neck-and-neck, having lost about 5 pounds apiece. Kayla hasn't even started yet, claiming that she'll be able to cram it all in and beat us all at the last second. We shall see.

My favorite part about this whole competition is chuckling at the exercise videos I bought (while I do them faithfully, every other day). Mondays I kick off the week with a little Billy Blank's Cardio Inferno. Now, there's nothing like seeing Billy grunting in a tight black leotard to get me all motivated to kick the crap out of the empty air in front of me. But what I really love are all of Billy's little comments (Billy and I are on a first-name basis, just in case anyone's curious). What follows is just a little sprinkling of some of my favorite Billy-quotes (if you want more, you'll have to buy the video yourself):

"I don't wanna see no gobbledy-gobble. We gonna get RID of that gobbledy-gobble" (apparently "gobbledy-gobble" is underarm jiggle)

"Now I'm here to help you out [pointing at me], but we gotta work together as a TEAM" (brings on the guilt trip every time)

"Hey you there, on the couch--yes you! Get your butt off that seat and stop watching ME work out!" (cracks me up every time, because for half of the video, Billy's not even working out either. He's going around criticizing everyone else in the video and heckling this little Asian girl to "get tougher")

"You can't let me be your leader. YOU'VE got to be your leader. Let YOUR voice lead you--not mine." (Valuable advice from a man in tight spandex)

My other video is the Dancing with the Stars' Latin Cardio Blast, which makes Kayla crack up like a clown every time I do it, although I have no idea why. Okay, maybe I do---it's pretty bad. And I know it's bad, because even I can tell that the instructors feel awkward as they do it, which makes me feel awkward doing it. My favorite moment is when the main lady (don't remember her name) says after the first two minutes (literally): "I'm tired. Take it from here, Max." My other favorite moment is when Max (cute Russian guy, also in black spandex) says, "Now I want you to turn out your hips. Whatever that means to you." What if 'turning out my hips' meant that I just turned them right of there and ate me a couple of handfuls of peanut butter M&M's and watched an episode of The Office?

Moral of the story: Exercise videos = Way too much fun for me.

K, jokes (mostly) aside, the videos actually do seem to be working. I mean, I have lost those 5 pounds, and I actually seem to have gone down a pant size. I found this out accidentally when I went to Old Navy last night to check out their Skinny Jeans sale. I never thought I could pull off skinny jeans and I had especially not been too willing to try lately. But I picked up a pair of Size 4s and thought, "What the heck? They might fit." Much to my surprise, they did. And looked pretty good. So I'm sitting here now in the TSC computer lab in my first pair of skinny jeans...and feeling pretty hot.

Pictures of the jeans to follow.

If I remember.
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