Sunday, October 30, 2005

Happy Halloween!

So, first a few blog-type things.

This is brilliant. Become Republican! kt, I thought especially of you. :)

And after five Halloween parties--four house parties and a bar party--I FINALLY got some pictures! They are coming! Woo!!! A very nice boy whose date I was at the first house party on Saturday dropped by a drugstore on the way and bought me a disposable camera, because I was running late. He likes me far more than is good for him. Not that anyone who likes me does so in FDA-approved amounts. Kind of like butter--ANY amount is too much.

Aarwenn Ingredients: Spitfire, sweat, tears, blood (mainly someone else's), breasts, cooter, two legs, long hair, blue eyes, trouble.

Nutrition Information
Heartbreak: 68% RDA
Despair: 87%
Sex: 400%
Attitude: 113%
Questioning of Self-Worth: 100%.

Back to the pictures: I took very few--I'm just not a picture-taker, y'all--and we were all trashed, so we can all pray they turn out. Because I owe pictures of me in vinyl chaps to many, many people.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Want to know your type? Ask an honest friend!

Like, for instance, T-town Girl.

Want to know how this question came up?

Because I met a nice boy while taking an 8-hour composites class yesterday, and we got to talking (okay, I chatted him up, but he didn't need much encouragement) and after an extremely inappropriate-for-work conversation today, he asked me out for coffee!

So yes, I have another First Date.

But moving on, he asked me what my type was (over Work-Controlled Instant Messenger) and I don't really have a type, or couldn't think of one, so I emailed T-town Girl really fast, and this is what she said:

"Geeky, low self esteem, assholes who cover up their insecurities by flaunting a particularly rank from of arrogance."

She's totally right. Although she forgot "alcoholic".

In my defense, not ALL guys I've dated have been like that! Just um, two out of four serious boyfriends. Flings are more likely to be more fun. But the two guys I'm into right now (excluding New First Date) certainly fit that mold. Sigh.

What's a girl to do? Change types? I'm working on that, with New First Date. He doesn't use complete sentences over IM--and also uses shortcuts like u, bc, and oic--and I'm trying not to let that bother me. I feel like I'm letting my elitist nerd side down. But maybe that's a good thing.

And, with thanks to T-town for this inspired typo that I took and ran with, allow me to introduce a new entry for Webster's!

sexpress (v.): 1. Expressing a sentiment having to do with sex, often used as shorthand. I sexpressed my preferences on the third date. He liked the mention of handcuffs. 2. Expressing a sentiment during sex, talking dirty. "Want to learn how to sexpress? Use our handy phrasebook!" 3. Expressing a sentiment USING sex. I didn't know what I should say, so I sexpressed. 4. Talking about something sexual, sometimes accidentally; a freudian slip. I totally sexpressed the other day--instead of saying "How are you?" I said, "Take off your shirt." I'm so embarrassed!

See also: sexpressing, sexpressed, sexpressment (n.)

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

I have nothing original to say.

So instead, I'm blatantly using my talented friends. As may be obvious to some of you more perceptive readers, T-town girl and Tacompton Tiffany and myself also carry on a constant email correspondence daily at work, in ADDITION to posting on our blogs, and occasionally working. Disclaimer: Tacompton Tiffany actually works. Which is why she doesn't post very often. Or write us back.

So instead, I present to you: T-town Girl's Rules for:

How to save your diet from your boyfriend.

1. Make dinner at home more often. That way you have control over what goes into it.
2. When you do eat out, go vegetarian. Meat is just concentrated calories.
3. So is alcohol, have water.
4. Avoid dairy. No Alfredo sauce and no 3 cheese anything.
5. Garlic, ginger, marinara, and sushi (of the non tempura variety) are your best friends.
6. Lay off the condiments and add-ons.
7. Eat only 1/2 of what you order and have the other 1/2 for dinner the next day or for lunch for 2 days.
8. Stop eating complementary appetizers (chips, bread, etc.) and don't order an appetizer.
9. You may not have desert.
10. MOST IMPORTANT: if you eat out alot, it is no longer a special occasion. You may not indulge.

I asked her for her wisdom in this matter because now that I'm dating again, a regular date involves food, and...right.

Also, I am going to scream. My manager is an idiot and I hate the entire aerospace industry. Also, I hate old people, and people who go on vacation HUNTING, of all things, while deadlines go flying by. I don't understand people who can't turn on a dime, I don't understand bureaucracy, and I don't understand old people who need things explained to them three times over, and most of all, I don't understand old white men acting like teenagers, in that the more I call them, the less they want to call me back. I wouldn't accept that behavior from the kids I tutor.

Also, I have already eaten 846 calories. By 10:30. It's not even lunch time. I have 153 calories left for my entire lunch. Yes, I know I have better things to do than count calories.

In addition, my manager, who sits behind me, enjoys using his speakerphone, even though we're in cubicles. And we can hear every word of his conversation. And his every mis-dial, too. It's lovely that I have a manager who cannot, consistently, remember how to dial a long distance number from his phone. (Hint: you have to press '8' instead of '9'.) He's only worked at B----- for 40 years.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Yeah, I finally took it.

You are a

Social Liberal
(75% permissive)

and an...

Economic Liberal
(25% permissive)

You are best described as a:

Strong Democrat

Link: The Politics Test on Ok Cupid
Also: The OkCupid Dating Persona Test

Friday, October 21, 2005

...And Bumpy

As is somewhat well known on this blog, two months ago I crashed my beautiful jeep. And now I'm driving a rented 1995 silver Toyota Tercel while they fix it. (Very. Slowly.) Or at least, I WAS driving the Tercel...

Yes, the Tercel has been broken for five days, almost six. Tonight I'm supposed to either get my Jeep back, if it's ready, (cue the Hallelujah Chorus!) or the Tercel, if it's not, which would still be better than driving nothing. Or my mother's car, which she has been nice enough to loan me, part time.

Because when I drive my mother's car, you see, I have two sets of keys. And since I can barely keep track of one set of keys, having two sets is a Very Bad Idea.

Because I might run home from work, walk Titan, and then be in a hurry to leave for the Y, so I might just grab the car keys and the water bottle and my Y card. I never take my phone to the gym unless I'm expecting an important call (only once in four months, so far) and I often bring no money or driver's license or anything else, because I don't have pockets in my gym clothes and I don't want to lose anything. (License? I don't need no stinkin' license!)

With me so far? I work my ass off at the Y, get back in my mother's car, and drive, tired and sweaty, to my house. When I realize: I have no house keys.

It's cold. It's misting. I'm cold and getting colder as my sweat dries on me, Titan is confused because I keep yanking at the door handle like it might open magically, and I have no phone to call my roommate. Or money. Or wallet. Now, I've broken into my house many a time, but it's the rainy season now and we're keeping our windows closed, worse luck. I walk around, climbing on fences, recycling bins, and porch chair, trying every single window, even the one I KNEW was loose, but it turns out (as I learn much later) that Roommate has fixed them. Damn him.

Titan is very confused by now and there's nothing I can do except go to my mom's house, where I shower, borrow her clothes (I can fit into them easily! YAY!!!) and call Roommate, whose number I certainly don't have memorized but which is fortunately still in my email correspondence from when he and I were emailing about possibly being roommates, two months ago. After he gets done laughing at me, he informs me that he's spending the next several nights in Gig Harbor because he's working long hours and his mom's house is much closer to work, so I have to SKIP Gilmore Girls with T-town Girl and drive OUT to Gig Harbor, where I meet him, get his key, and finally enter my house hours later. Sigh.

Thursday, October 20, 2005


I may have mentioned in a previous post that Houseguest and I got really fantastic Sonics tickets, and then said I was going to talk about that in some future blog post, and then...I didn't.

Never fear, blogstalkers!

So, Friday night, I pick Houseguest up from the airport. I'm wearing the boots:

Are they not hawt?

Close up. (As CAP said, it's surprisingly hard to take a picture of your own feet.)

Anyway. So I'm wearing the boots, which turn out to be surprisingly practical, although that's not foreknown because it's a nice, warm, DRY, gray cloudy night in Seattle on Friday as I arrive at Sea-Tac Airport. Houseguest and I drive directly to Key Arena, as I have already bought nosebleed seats and we're planning to get beer and wander around the stadium, watching the game from wherever we can. We pull into the parking lot, get out of the car, and find the parking vendor. The minute we find him, he says, "So, you're having problems with the parking machine, too?"

What? I mean, yes, yes, we are. Damn thing won't take our money. He says, "Hundreds of people have had that problem. Here's a sign to hang in your window. I'll vouch for you guys."

Sweet, free parking!

Then he says, "You guys going to the game? Do you need tickets?"


"Because I have this ticket here, I think it's a pretty good seat, and I know it won't be full, so you can probably find an extra seat somewhere close."

Houseguest looks at him. "You are my new best friend," he says seriously, and the parking attendant laughs and waves us on. Into the squall.

While we've been talking, the skies have opened up, and torrential rain has begun to pour down from the sky. Houseguest lends me his coat, and we run, cursing, all the way across Seattle Center, me thanking my rubber-soled hawt boots the whole way.

We get to the arena. The security guard checks my purse. The ticket taker asks to see my tickets. I look at Houseguest. He comes up with the fancy ticket the parking attentdant gave us...and nothing else.

Houseguest is thinking: If this is anything like the Lakers' Stadium, different ticket classes have to enter through different gates. I can go in this one with the fancy ticket, but Aarwenn will have to go through a different gate and we won't be able to reconnect. I'll pretend I only have one and see if I can sweet talk the guard into letting us both in.

Meanwhile, Aarwenn is thinking: Shit, he forgot the real tickets in the car! Maybe he's just pretending? Does he know that all I need is a ticket to get in the door and then I can wander anywhere? Shit! And the harder I try to convince Houseguest that I really am serious and really do need the tickets, the more he thinks I'm play-acting frantic so that the ticket attendant will take pity on us!

Several moments of this improv go on before the ticket attendant waves us on with an exasperated smile. "I know it's not full," she says. "But you'll need your tickets if challenged." We escape inside, where Houseguest and I compare notes and laugh hysterically about the unneeded improvisational routine we just went through, and then we go off to find our seats, me hoping against hope there will be empty, unsold seats next to our scrounged ticket.

And we walk down, and down, and down, until we find our seats. On the FLOOR OF KEY ARENA. We have some of the best seats I've ever seen. Everytime the Phoneix Suns go up for a shot, there we are on TV. We are DIRECTLY BEHIND THE NET. There's only one seat, but the girl who owned the block of four seats--the one who brought her boyfriend and her son to the game, and gave away her fourth ticket to a nice parking attendant, who then gave it away to some drowned rats scamming free parking--PULLS HER SON INTO HER LAP SO WE CAN BOTH SIT DOWN.

Was she an angel, or what?

And yes, I totally forgot my camera phone. No pictures of Ray Allen's sweat or anything. And it wasn't broadcast on TV; it was pre-season. But I swear. It happened.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Best Caffeine Prayer ever

Everyone has seen this. But it's still so good, and so applicable. (Note: the following is my personal version. I think it's the best.)(Further note: I got no sleep. Not for anything exciting, either.)

The Caffeine Addict's Prayer.

Caffeine is my shepherd; I shall not doze.
It maketh me wake in green pastures,
It leadeth me beyond the sleeping masses,
It restoreth my buzz.
It guides me in the paths of consciousness for its name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of addiction, I will fear no decaf, for thou black coffee art always with me;
Thou 7-11 and thou am/pm, they comfort me.
Thou preparest a carafe before me in the presence of tea drinkers:
Thou anointest my day with pep; my mug runneth over.
Surely richness and taste shall follow me all the days of my life:
and I will dwell in the House of Maxwell forever.

And a good comic strip:

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The Playa is BACK.

I swore, if I talked to Chicago Aerospace Engineer (the guy who produced The Crazy in me yesterday) again, I'd make him pay.

And I did. Through the nose. After some bright and girly chattering on my part about flowers and boys and such (hey, he ASKED about them), he told me he felt cheap and used, and hoped for more between us but knew it wouldn't happen because he could never date me because, verbatim, "I'm selfish and hate the fact that you date like three guys at once."

Therefore, I told him that ExTheBoy had asked me out even after watching me tear through Tacoma like a succubus on speed, but that he (TheExBoy) was "special". And no hard feelings, and incidentally, there's this party coming up, you should come! Bright smile. He said, all melancholy, "Oh, yes, I'll be there. You know I will be. Sigh."


My Hawt Boots Are HAWT

And awfully practical in the rainy weather that deluged Houseguest and I over the weekend. Pictures of me modeling them are coming soon.

In other news, assuming you want to buy a condo, and assuming you know where Kirkland, Washington, is, and assuming you want to buy a condo there, and assuming you checked out a rental site, and found this condo, and then you checked the bathroom shot...

Would you be more or less likely to buy the condo? :)

And in spite of The Crazy taking me over yesterday with Chicago Aerospace Engineer (I swear, it was like The Exorcist), it's not like I don't have other boys. That send me gorgeous flowers. That are waiting on my doorstep when I come home after a long day, so that I practically burst into tears.

Which is just another reason why it's important for us girls to have Options.

Monday, October 17, 2005

I just did a very dumb thing, or, The Crazy

In which I said all the wrong things to Chicago Aerospace Engineer, simultaneously chasing after him and being snotty because he wasn't chasing after me, and have completely ruined it. Sigh.

I'm usually better than that. The Crazy just took over. I was simpering and high school and bitchy, all at once. It's over. Well, it's over for the time being. Maybe I'll wait a month and try again.

I HATE it when I do that! ARGH!

Of Cars and Men

First, I'd like to point out that I had a houseguest this weekend, which was great yet stressful, but very good for my domestic cleanliness. My bedroom (yes, he was THAT kind of houseguest) went from being a disaster zone of clothes, papers, and books everywhere, with occasional spiders, and a futon stuck in the middle, to being an actual Bedroom With a Theme. I spent $120 at IKEA several weeks ago getting Boudoir Themed Things, but it worked. Woo!

Not that he wouldn't have *ahem ahem* if we had slept on dirty sheets covered with dog hair in the middle of a paper forest, but it's a Pride thing, you know? Besides, although he IS a code monkey, he lives in La-La Land and is the kind of guy who Noticed When I Changed My Shoes. From one pair of black boots to another. That is the kind of guy who cannot be overestimated.

And yes, besides being in The Boudoir, we also went to a bunch of museums and a Sonics Game in which we got awesome tickets in the most outrageous circumstances, but more on that later.

Moving on: those in the know know that I have been driving a silver 1995 Toyota Tercel lately (for the last TWO MONTHS) while I wait for my beautiful, gorgeous Jeep Unlimited to be fixed. Granted, The Autobody Place is letting me rent it for a very low price, which is awesome of them and certainly not something I plan to complain about. And the time it has taken to fix my Jeep is mainly ship time for parts, as I of course got the Special Jeep, for which apparently no parts can be found. And The Autobody Place has been very communicative about everything.

HOWEVER. There comes a limit. Sunday morning I get in the car and turn the key in the ignition. The car starts up and immediately begins shaking like it's a stick shift and I'm trying to start the car without the clutch in, but of course it's not a stick shift. I depress the accelerator. The car smoothes out just fine. I take my foot off the gas. Earthquake in a tin can.

Humph. I turn off the car and walk into the house, shocked, thinking, how am I going to get to church and drive Houseguest to the plane? I find Roommate (already up, of course) and give him a brief description of what's happening. He guesses it's probably the transmission, which I had already assumed from the way it shook, and, here's the key, offers me his really hot truck to drive to church. Yes, AFTER I've had Houseguest wrapped around me like a tarpaulin all weekend. Roommate really is a fantastic guy.

I draw a crowd by climbing in his really hot truck (note to self: next time you drive a car four feet off the ground, don't wear a tight, form-fitting, knee-length skirt and boots) and motor off to church in high style, while Houseguest stays home in his PJs and fixes my computer. Mom and I have a heart-to-heart in the parking lot about guys and cars. We agree that if my car doesn't respond to the addition of automatic transmission fluid, we'll reconnoiter and think about moving cars around. She also reminds me that although Houseguest and I seem to be physically incompatible (hey, the weekend was the First Time), he's also smart and funny and cute and at ease around hard-to-impress adults and to try again. She turns out to be entirely right.

I stop by Shucks auto supply and buy transmission fluid. I have no idea what kind I need, so I ask the nice guy with gauged ears (and absolutely NO interest in me) what kind I need. He recommends a kind. I get it home. Houseguest and I peer under the hood of the Tercel. He goes back inside to work on the computer, leaving The Gearhead (me) alone to work her magic. After some poking around, I find the automatic transmission fluid dipstick, which seems to be well coated in fluid, but also has a few black chunks on it. Not a good sign. Also, the place to pour in the fluid is way down in the car and about .25 inches in diameter, and the dipstick calls for a different kind of fluid than I bought. Also I'm low on oil. Yeah.

Houseguest and I walk to Shakabrah for food, which I desperately need, and then back to Shucks. We buy a different kind of ATF, and some oil, and a funnel. We walk back to my house. I pour in the ATF and the oil, say a prayer, and start up the car again. Earthquake in a tin can. I let the car run for five minutes, occasionally laying on the gas and easing it up again. I put it in drive and pull a few feet forward with the intention of driving around the block. Houseguest and I look at each other, as much as we can actually make eye contact with the entire car shaking. We agree that the car shouldn't even be taken around the block. I pull back to my original spot and turn it off. So much for that.

The autobody place said this morning that they'd tow it to their place, turn it around in a day, and get it back to me. Uh-huh. Sure. Sounds great, gentlemen. Where's my Jeep?

Tacoma is taking over the world.

First there was me. (Hi!)

Then there was t-town girl.

And now, caving to peer pressure, "your friend t", seen occasionally in the comments section, has started her own blog chock full of lies and half-truths, and we are all very excited. Tacompton Tiffany is here!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Breezy Elegance

Hardware Geek doesn't have a phone. (I know. But he is very good about emailing constantly.) So when my plans change on the spur of the moment, which happens quite often, it wreaks havoc on the date, because it can't be changed and I can't call him. So, if a girl like me, with a very flexible sense of time, and a girl like LongtimeFriend, also with a flexible sense of time--did I mention I acted like LongtimeFriend's lesbian lover this weekend to make a guy jealous? and that it worked?--anyway, if we maybe go to Tacoma's Greek Festival with my parents, and then maybe we drink some wine, and eat lots of fried feta cheese wrapped in puff pastry, and then when we're leaving I'm trying to coordinate with an Ex whose bag I have in my car after a racuous house party, and I ask him, in making plans, "Well, what time is it now?" And he says, "9:07."

As in, seven minutes AFTER I was supposed to meet Hardware Geek. And I still have to drive LongtimeFriend home. I panic. Then I come up with a bright idea: Hey, I'm supposed to meet him at a coffeehouse, and that's on the way to LF's house, so I'll just swing by there, tell him I'll be late, drive LF home, and come right back! LF agrees that this would be a good idea. We drive to the coffeehouse. I turn off the car, leap out (in spike-heeled boots), run like crazy across the street, and into the coffeehouse. Or at least, that's the plan.

About the time a chain hits my leg is when my slow brain registers the fact that there is a BEER GARDEN OUTLINED BY A KNEE-HIGH CHAIN AND ANCHORED BY MASSIVE FLOWERPOTS between me and the door. By then, of course, it's too late. I go down. The chain comes crashing down on top of me. Along with the chain go several cafe tables, folding chairs, and patrons.

And, of course, the flowerpots.

After all the crashing stops, I venture to stand up. LF is in the car, practically dying because she's laughing so hard, and everyone standing outside smoking is staring at me, mouths agape. Another patron is on the ground. Tables and chairs askew. Gigantic flowerpots are sideways, dirt and cigarette butts pouring out of them. It looks like a meteor hit. I dust myself off (not even a hole in my jeans, by the way), refuse all offers of help, leave the coffeeboy to clean up the mess, and run inside, although by the time Hardware Geek has, of course, seen me. I was hard to ignore. He raises his eyebrows. "That was quite an entrance! Are you okay?" I show him that I am fine, and he agrees to wait a little longer as I drive my friend home.

After that, I figure I could spit on him and get away with it.

Forking and Dating

So, I'm eating lunch at my desk while I write this post, and I just did a very, very ungraceful thing involving baked tofu and a plastic fork, in which the tofu almost fell OFF the fork (some people eat it with their hands, but it's juicy and I don't like tofu juice on my fingers if I can't wash them right away and the bathroom is ALL THE WAY ACROSS THE HALL...and by the way, is it just me, or does "tofu juice" sound totally dirty?) and I was forced to catch it with my lower jaw, which just trapped the tofu AGAINST the fork and I was trying to scoop it up with my lip, looking (I'm sure) very much like I was trying to sexually molest the fork in some way. If anyone tells you they saw me trying to molest flatware, it's all a big misunderstanding, okay?

Fortunately I don't think anyone saw it.

Which leads me to the most ungraceful (but TOTALLY Aarwenn) thing that I have done recently. And of course that totally ungraceful thing that I did, this time involving spike-heeled boots, me running, a chain, and an audience, happened on a Second Date. Which deserves capitals, because I am just slowly (um, at 60 mph) re-entering the world of dating.

Because, me? Single. SINGLE SINGLE SINGLE!!!!! WOOOOOOO!!!!!!

It's awesome.

However. This doesn't mean that I don't want boys in my life. (Not that I don't have that already with Roommate, who is totally awesome and a Must In Every Girl's Life, but we'll get to that in a second.)

So, because I'm re-entering the dating world at 60 mph, I'm sort of dating two guys at once. Mainly I'm dating one that I met on Craigslist (where else?) named Hardware Engineer, and the other is a work friend, Chicago Aerospace Engineer, or CAE, that took me out for a drink, which turned into a date, and we haven't yet gone on a SECOND date. But there are plans. So we'll see. Because he still has wine left. And the whole point of me going over to his house on the "date" was to finish his wine, which I opened the first time I was there. And we wouldn't want that wine to turn to vinegar, would we? (Note: see in that post where I say, "[I] stay[ed] there platonically but next time it won't be? I was right. I should get a job in the stock market!)

Moving on. Both guys are engineers, which is exciting, and by "exciting" I mean "not exciting". Engineers are great and I love them, but dating them is really quite challenging and could leave a girl exhausted, if she wasn't all hot and bothered about those sexy engineer and the sexy machines they work on. (Think I'm joking? The "out for drinks" turned into a date because we began talking about how sexy the planes were, and once we got started...well...yes. Planes make us hot. Because we are that nerdy.)

Because engineers, even more than most men, are DENSE. And SHY. But really quality guys, usually, as proved by Hardware Engineer's reaction to my entrance to our second date. Which I will now tell. In the next post.

And a quick note about why Every Girl Needs My Roommate: Because your own, personalized, 24-7 guy advice can really make a girl a master player. I haven't made a single big mistake yet. Except get as cocky as I am now. Whoops.

UPDATE: I have gotten many emails asking, basically, "Okay, yeah, this is funny and all, but did you DO IT?" And the answer is no to both. When I do, you'll know.

Are you in debt? Have you ever had a bad relationship?

Then skip all other blogs today and just read this post.

Monday, October 10, 2005

A B----- story

Good Morning, Blogstalkers!

Posted below is a piece I wrote in order to win a contest. B-----, in trying to promote the practice of vanpooling, is having a story contest, and top stories will be awarded $100 (it didn't say how MANY top stories there would be) so, in the true spirit of blogging, I posted it for comment and feedback. Say anything!

I started riding the Vanpool in May, introduced to it by a man 30 years my senior.

This wasn't any different than anything I had done, so far, at B-----. Welcome to B-----! Meet your coworkers! See the pictures of your coworkers' kids! Realize that you're working with people who have kids older than you are! At first, it was a surprise, and then it became, like waking up early and commuting, just a part of the job. I revamped my wardrobe so that I wouldn't stand out, tired of people dropping what they were doing to gape at a Young Person walking by their desk. I wore smaller earrings, I stopped wearing makeup. I refrained from making pop-culture references and shooting my mouth off. I resigned myself to aging before my time. I thought about changing jobs.

And then, in May, four months after I started B-----, I started riding a vanpool. Filled, as my life had been so far, with people older than my parents, and (also not unusual for B-----) all male. Except for me. At first, I was shy, quiet. I dreaded getting on the vanpool in the morning—what would I say? Where would I sit? Was it customary to talk to the driver, or the guy sitting next to you? What if they thought I was weird?

A month went by. I learned the name of my van driver, and then I learned the name of his customary shotgun rider. I started to tutor the son of one of my co-riders, and I learned that not everyone around me was an engineer, like I was. I met HR people who explained snarly parts of B----- Policy to me, I met other women engineers—I even met other Young People!

Now the only thing that gets me up at 4:30 in the morning is looking forward to seeing that van every morning. I've changed vans since I started and now I ride with mainly women, which is often the only female contact I have all day, and it's surprising how necessary it is to my mental well-being. Now that I look back, I can see that sitting at my desk all day and staring at my computer was a fast track to depression and isolation; people need to be bounced around by the Brownian Motion of society. I've started putting on make up again, even at 4:30 in the morning!

I knew I had truly become a part of the B----- community when I was part of a conversation among the ladies in my vanpool a few mornings ago: "Every time I go into the cafeteria now, I’m shocked my all the kids at the tables!" One said. Said another, "I know! I always think, 'Is B----- having High School Visitation Day?'"

At first, I was profoundly insulted—I like to think I've finally moved beyond high school—and then I was honored. The ladies had forgotten my age! I pointed out that I was the same age as the "kids" they were maligning, and they rushed to my defense. "But you’re not like that," said a chorus of voices. "You’re not a typical new hire." While I appreciate the sentiment, that's not true—I know quite a few of the New Hires at the Developmental Center, and we're all pretty much the same—engineering school backgrounds, long hours, a habit of going out in Seattle on the weekends. But the ladies on the vanpool saw me as different because they had gotten to know me on a personal level, and I hope that their good impression of me, and the two other new hires in our vanpool program, might carry over to other new hires, promoting better relationships over the generation gap. I know they've certainly done that for me.

And the best example: a few nights ago, I was out for a quick beer on a Wednesday night, and as I walked through the door of my local tavern, a voice on my right hailed me. "Hey, [Aarwenn]!"

It was the man who, back in May, introduced me to the vanpool, and I hadn't seen him since. We talked for a few moments, and even though he mentioned meeting his daughter, who was indeed older than I was, I didn't feel any younger than the man in front of me. For all intents and purposes, we were identical—we worked for the same company, rode the same vanpool, and were even drinking the same beer. It was great, and I mentioned off-handedly that I was looking to seeing "my friends" on the vanpool tomorrow, possibly the first time I had ever used the term in that context.

How did I ever think I would never feel comfortable at B-----?

Friday, October 07, 2005

Taking Liberties

Listening to butt rock can really make a girl ANGRY.

What, exactly, is the optimum balance that any girl in my position must strive for?

On the one hand, I want to be one of the guys. Very much. I enjoy it when a guy says, to the room, "Fellas", and includes me. I don't expect chairs to be pulled out or doors to be held. I keep my baggage light, I don't wear heels I can't walk in. I work hard at shopping (gee, so difficult) so that I can look like a woman and act like a man--walk fast, hold my own doors, be ready to go at a moment's notice, and (most importantly for my job) be factory-appropriate at all times. AND look great. It's harder than it looks.

On the OTHER hand, it annoys me greatly when a man says, "Fellas", and I know he's NOT including me because he doesn't see me. Believe me, there's a difference, and it has nothing to do with age or status of the man.

It's cool when men vent to me about women. I enjoy it, because it means they're not seeing me as a woman--they're seeing me as a business partner, as any other guy they might vent to about their wife. I enjoy being talked to like a man. I DON'T enjoy being used as a face (or avatar, if you will) for the purpose of listing, loudly, everything that's wrong with my entire gender. That motivation is harder to call--it's a judgement call, like everything else. Is the guy bitching about women at B----- the way he would to any guy he worked with, the way the ladies on my vanpool bitched to me about the presence of young people at B-----, not realizing that I was a part of that group because they just saw me as their friend? Because that, believe it or not, is a good thing.

But is that guy bitching to me about women at B----- on purpose to intimidate me or insult me? In summary: was it accidental, or was it purposeful?

And if it's accidental, and I react badly, should I attempt to fix it? Or if it's purposeful, what the hell do I do in the face of such obvious malice? What if I've thrown the first punch, per se? Am I allowed to get mad if the seriousness of the banter has been seriously stepped up? If I've thrown stones at him personally and he's maligned my entire gender?

Once I talk to Mentor about something like work-appropriate clothing, is it appropriate for him to continually pick at little details like: don't talk so much, don't try to make yourself part of the conversation, don't fidget so much in meetings? MF, did I ask you to be my mother?

Sigh. La la la. Hot Boots I Just Bought.

And a side note to a man (NOT a coworker) who makes jokes to me about women who are endowed or not:

MOTHERFUCKER. The first thing I do, when I take up my leadership role in the New World Order, will be to enforce that men wear specially designed pants [Smartpants]. There will be a computer sensor in the crotch that measures the size of the penis and transmits that to the back of the pants, where the back pockets will be sized accordingly.

You girls know what I'm talking about. Why the hell must we advertise the size of our sexual organs when the guys don't have to? It's outrageous. I long for this day:

[guy approaches me in a bar]
Guy: "Hi, can I buy you a drink?"
[I raise an eyebrow.]
Me: "Maybe. Turn around."
[guy turns around slowly.]

And for all the guys: all is not lost! You'll be able to artificially enhance the size, and that artificial size will be read as "real" by the Smartpants, so you too can run with the big boys. However, when you get her home, the real size will become apparent. It's not like millions of guys the world over don't hate the Wonderbra for this reason. Time to even the playing field.

Smartpants and every other idea in this post, and indeed on this entire blog, is COPYRIGHTED, BITCHES!

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Halloween, Being Invisible and Not Looking Back Yet.

Dude! Happy Six-Month Blogging Anniversary to Me!

Actually, I've been blogging much longer than that, but this is my six-month Blogger anniversary.

I've read some of my first posts (I actually read my own blog obsessively) and I have a ton of things to say about past and present, things I've accomplished and things that no longer matter.

But not right now. It has been a very long week. And I'm exhausted.

Instead, the Saga of My Halloween Costume:

At first, I was going to wear vinyl pants, a red ruffled velvet top, and fangs. To be a vampire. This is what I wore senior year, I think, the last time I really dressed up for Halloween. Of course, at the time, the red ruffled velvet top, for $6 at a clearance rack, and drugstore teeth that would NOT stay on, was all I could afford.

This time, I thought I'd wear my blue corset instead--y'all haven't seen it, but it's strapless, and greyish blue brocade, and laces up the front, so there's a lot of cleavage exposed, and lots of "shelf" at the top. I thought maybe with the vinyl pants I could get some sort of Post-Post-Post-Neo Victorian thing going. (Anyone seen The Fifth Element lately? That's what I was going for.)

Then I discovered that the crotch stitching had come out of my vinyl pants, and it's noticeable, so I thought I'd just cut out the entire crotch area and make them chaps. And then I had so many elements--the corset is Victorian, which could also be construed as Western Bordello, the vinyl is fetishist, the chaps are both fetishist AND western, and then with the fangs--what would I be? A visitor from the future: a vampire who became a vampire in the 1880s in a Wild West bordello, and now pilots a fetishist spaceship and so only has access to vinyl, and hails from a world like the Fifth Element? The whole thing seemed sort of Firefly/Serenity, sort of. And it would take too long to explain. So I called myself Gratuitous Skin With Fangs. Seemed to cover everything.

Now: it turns out that the blue brocade corset does not look right with the vinyl, although with big enough hair and eye makeup, not to mention enough boobs, one might be able to get away with anything. AND I've gotten the number of a professional tailor, who might be able to fix the stitching of my vinyl pants, and even create a little more room for me in the sides. (very small waist on vinyl). So now I'm wearing the more traditional red-and-black corset, with straps, and I won't have chaps on, so I'm back to Traditional Vampire. With Fangs.

Any questions?

In fact, I might take to wearing this costume to work, which would avoid the "Ignore Aarwenn" problem. Yes, work sucks balls, and no one listens to the young girl at the table with the quick mind, the quicker mouth, and the shiny long hair. Maybe if I became a ponderous, slow-walking frumpy math nerd, I'd get more respect? The whole thing makes me want to run out, start my own business, and SHOW them. Of course, the only thing I have going for me is a quick mind, a quicker mouth, a huge ego, arrogance, and a good knowledge of business, engineering, and pop culture. It's hard to start a business on that. Not much to quantify. What the hell would my business cards say..."Hire me to fix your image problems. Because I'm cooler than you."?

Monday, October 03, 2005

WOO! Time to Post!

Things I have done:

Effected Change.

First I gave money to a great cause in the name of someone who hates said cause.

Then I noticed that the only other woman in the office suddenly had a cute houndstooth jacket, with puffed sleeves and a flirty little ruffle at the back! It was very poor quality fabric--probably barely thick enough to count as a jacket--but it was cute, and this lady dresses worse than most men I know (although she tries, which is just fucking painful) so I took it upon myself to reward her for good behavior by complimenting her. She smiled and said, "Well, since you with all your youth and glory moved in, I thought I'd try to be a little more stylish!"

Think it's funny that she just now noticed I was younger and more stylish than she is? It's not--for my first several months here I just wore whatever I had that covered all right body parts and didn't show off my chest. (Difficult enough in and of itself.) No makeup, barely a comb through my hair. No more. For the past several weeks I have worn makeup, put hair gunk in my hair, and worn nice clothes--nice pants, nice shirts, high heels. Why?

Told Disapproving Old Women Just Where They Can Stick It

I (and other young'uns I work with) always feel pretty ignored by the older generation, especially since (as I've mentioned before) there's a large gap between changes in the guard. So we snipe. And bitch. And complain. About old people, and how they walk slowly and smell and can't type and can't dress (orthopedic shoes, anyone?) or follow our thoughts because we REFUSE TO SLOW DOWN, DAMNIT. And I've always felt a little bad about this, because hey, it's not their fault they're old, right? Maybe it's a little harsh to wish them all a speedy death so we can TAKE OVER.

And then I was on my vanpool a few mornings ago, and this NEW vanpool that I'm riding is full of women, whom I've bonded with. They're great. Very strong. And because we've bonded, they often forget how old I am, and a few mornings ago the talk turned to age. One woman vented, "I can't stand all these young kids at Boeing! I go into the cafeteria now and I think, 'Are we having a Family Day? Are we having a High School Visitation Day?'"


Before, like I said, I felt bad. And I never really thought about how I must look to these women, all in their mid-forties, but if I had, I would have felt bad about that, too.


I'm going to wear miniskirts and the highest heels I own. I'm going to wear makeup and toss my hair and flirt with men old enough to be my grandfather, just so they won't look at the older women. I'm 24 effin' years old, lady, I'm old enough to do anything I want to do except run for president. I'm old enough to take your job and do it better, I'm old enough to make decisions about birth control and sun exposure that you apparently didn't make. I'm tired of adults trying to drag me down to their level. I don't WANT to have kids, and I'm not going to be willing company in your misery.

And, if this added stylishness only inspires stylishness in other, older, women, then so much the better for them. And me.

Passed On the Curse of Food Obsession

Rooomate is cutting down on the Mountain Dew habit and trying to eat more greens. Trying to eat less junk.

Expanded My Attempts to Mold Young Minds

I might have a new tutoring student (did y'all know I tutor, too? Because, everyone knows, I don't work enough,) and I spent all weekend counseling a horde of screaming teenaged girls, which was actually a blast. Mwa hahahahahahaha.

I just feel so influential!