where am i?

Woke up at quarter-to-six this morning having an "oh SHIT" moment. Now, no one is going to bleed or die because of what I forgot, but I still couldn't get back to sleep. I hate that.

In fact, I think I've lost all ability to think ahead. Unless it's to daydream...suddenly I've become really adept and well-practiced at taking mental vacations. And it'd be OK to take a mental cruise to the Mediterranean if I could first make sure that I had thought through my work enough to see that it all gets done. But no, I have piles of crap on my desk to deal with and am instead thinking about how nice it would be to be sunbathing at the beach. Slackmaster.

So I guess I'll try to get it out of my system before coming into work today. Today's agenda:
  • Get the paper off of my desk - file, process, act on, burn up. Don't care, just gone.
  • Bug folks at work and at another company re: a tricky contract
  • Beg HR to do an evening chorus orientation
  • Try to find if a particular set of hotel keys are in or out-of-state
  • Lunch with singers, my boss and the BIG boss
  • Reconcile the budget and start working on projections for 2008. Ugh.
  • Listen to Opera #1 that I'll be staging for a teeny local company in the fall
  • Upload photos from this weekend's opera - tres charmant!
  • Finish building audition pages for the fall

We'll see what else comes up today. But at least now I have a game plan, right? So I'm totally justified in daydreaming a little...


saturday, or why I am still a teenage girl

Yesterday, as a reward for actually going to the gym on a weekday, I went to Barnes and Noble and bought the new Harry Potter book. Thinking that Saturday was going to be stormy and humid and generally unfriendly, I planned to get up after a long Friday, make a pot of good -ol Day-off-from-work hazelnut coffee, and start reading.

Got home from work at 11:00pm on Friday. Commenced reading at 11:15pm. On Friday.

Took a break to sleep at 1:15am.

Awake and reading at 8:30am, Saturday morning, with Day-off-from-work hazelnut coffee firmly in hand.

Finished by noon. AAAAAHHHHH.

Great book! (No spoilers here, except that I plan, as soon as the season finishes, to reread the whole series. S -l-o-w-l-y. And in the process, figure out how to de-muggle-ize myself. And find myself a house elf.)

And there was time enough post-novel-completion to buy picture frames for 3 awesome photos of herons and Great Falls. And new shoes for fall... Two pairs... Yay! And a soiree at the stylish home of one of Hubby's grad school pals, with lots of kids and new folks and food and wine.

I wish every day would start with a little magic...


unintentional water feature part 82

Am being forced to the gym this morning, as the shower-door-guy came yesterday to fix the shower door.


And there will be no showering today at the Rahree homestead, as we're trying to let some silicone something set up. Ugh. For the aggravation and the invasiveness of this whole process, the silicone should've been in my boobs rather than the freaking shower door. Grrrrr...Say a little prayer that it works. Or I may go absolutely bonkers.

The gym thing is actually good...a little cardio before hitting the office would do me some good, as I am sporting a badonkadonk butt. (None of the designers are showing them for the fall, so I should start working on it.) VKW is in town, and when she arrives I suddenly get interested in jogging again. Am hoping to sign up for a 5K sometime soon, just to give me something to work towards. I did a Race for the Cure in Pittsburgh a few years ago, and actually had fun... let's see if I can get it together for this fall.

The plan is to hit the gym, and then swing by the bookstore on the way to work. Because I am going to buy the last installment of Harry Potter. I've delayed buying one because I know I'll just want to read it and do no other work, but tomorrow I have a DAY OFF! AND it's supposed to be hot and stormy...a perfect day to sit on the couch with a diet soda, bowl of popcorn, and a big thick book! Wheeee!

Tonight? A totally charmant opera - French, silly, and totally fun. And - a perk for me this particular evening - short.

Tomorrow? Reading Harry Potter, trying to sketch out a rehearsal schedule for a project I'm directing in the fall that will allow me both a good chuck of time to work and some needed vacation time. (I've been a little panicky about taking on the project, as the folks running the company need more from me than I can give right now. But it'll be fun if I can get it worked out so that hubby and I get some time together beforehand.) And showering in my own home WITHOUT RAIN IN THE KITCHEN.

*sigh.* A girl can dream, can't she?


motivation, or lack thereof

not expected at work until later today. have had a lovely 2 cups of coffee, read the paper AND finished the puzzles. And now my choices are:

  • keep working on the perfect butt-shaped dent in my couch
  • go for a little jog & then get ready for work
  • knock out a few more chapters of Zadie Smith's White Teeth
  • try the new exercise dvd that i bought
  • check out a movie on the tube
  • hit the mall for some retail therapy
you'll notice that none of the above events require large amounts of brain cells. Because I have so, so very few to spare. i should probably move - i think that the jog is going to win out over the other activities. i dream about running, but in my dreams it's a really lovely, transcendent experiences and, well, the reality doesn't come close. but if i'm good and do it zippily enough, maybe i'll also be able to fit in some retail therapy!

the cat just hopped up onto my lap....maybe i'll just sit here for a few more minutes....


Captain Waaaaahhhhh

I'm officially tired. It's not so much the not-enough-sleep kind of tired, it's the cumulative fatigue that you feel after being on-task for a little too long.

(Disclaimer: I've not been on task well, either, lately. To all of you moms out there, I do NOT know how you do it.)

I find myself struggling to stay open. To be emotionally flexible, to not be stingy with my time and attention. I cannot count the times that a person has come to my office, and I totally lose focus way before they're done talking to me. I hate it when it happens to me - why am I doing it to others?

I want to say "no" more often. I whine. Physically I'm not exercising, and am hunched over a computer most of the day. I'm trying to funnel requests and demands from lots of different personalities, which is fun and a total job perk when I'm not tired. When I'm tired, though, I'm wondering why no one is bending over backwards for me or my colleagues.

Yessir, the self-pity party has totally started. Bring a beverage and hunker down....it's going to be a long ride.

I know the best way to get re-energized is to give more and do so with a light heart. To take better care of myself. To set aside time to hang out with hubby. And the end is in sight - 4 more crazy weeks, and then many of these fun folks leave. I need to enjoy them while they're around - who knows when our paths will cross again?

Note to self: suck it up. With a smile. :)


the hympathy

When my brother was little he had a hard time saying words with the letter "s": Sue became "Hoo", fork, became "hork"...you get the picture. Add to that my mom's habit of swapping similar-sounding nouns - as in "pot hole" for "taco." {"We're having pot holes for dinner tonight."}, and well, you start to understand where I come from linguistically.

I bring this up because tonight and tomorrow night I'm working Sympathy [or hympathy, depending on who you ask] concerts. Mozart and Mancini tonight, and a broadway pops show tomorrow. The orchestra is first-rate, and the soloists are not just fab players, but also totally personable.

So you should not have any hymphony for me, dear readers, as the weather is cool and breezy, and just about as perfect as anyone could wish for a summer's evening. Wish you were here!



So I took my first walk today since the whole Lyme Disease thing. It's been almost a month since I've been out, and I didn't realize how much I've missed it. It's already hot and quite humid this morning, and everything is heavier...the water is moving more slowly, the leaves are a dark green and hanging motionless like little lead weights. I saw a bajillion turtles...not sure why that makes me happy, but it does.

I think that my brains are actually connected to my feet. Walking is really the best way I have for processing situations, figuring things out. When I was singing, it was the way that I memorized...walking around the practice room, then taking the role to the streets and drilling it. When faced with big life changes, I walk to figure out which choice, which path, what to fight for. Am trying to reconcile a situation with an artist at work where I know that they really need this certain thing, but I can't allow it on several levels. And there will be some hard feelings...on both sides: on the artist's because we're not being supportive enough, on mine because I've really bent over backwards to make things right, but there's always something else that this person needs, another issue...and it makes me grumpy. As an administrator, I want to make our folks' experiences here positive. And I really like this artist - the motivation is not malicious. But in wanting to really care for folks, it's hard to say "no." Especially when I enjoy saying "yes" so much more.

No conclusion reached on my morning jaunt, but I feel better about it... Cheap therapy, to be sure.


it's not bed head.

i wear my hair short because as much as i'd love a think head of wavy, below-my-shoulders gorgeousness, if i've only got 3 wishes the boobs [bigger] and thighs [smaller] get first dibs. And i might need that third wish for an emergency.

short hair needs to be cut more often, and my schedule in the summer isn't conducive to having a life much less personal grooming, so I set up a summer's worth of appointments in May.

Brilliant! I know, right?

They're all at 8 am. Less brilliant. Way less than brilliant. Too darn early.

But by now my hairdresser Michael and I are tight. Goooood buddies. He reads my mind and cuts my hair exactly the way I want it, regardless. A magician, that man is! And he talks fashion and music and houses and loves beefy guys. He's me in a boy's body. So when I arrive 10 minutes late for my appointment in sweats and a ball cap, Michael pretends to not be surprised that I've totally rolled right out of bed for my haircut.

I take my hat off and put it in my lap. And Michael takes it from me and tosses it on the floor. "Honey, you're not gonna need that when you leave me."

And he's always right. Thanks, Michael!


Watch out, Tony

So I read this article about Polish literature taking over bookshelves in the UK. Cool.

I love all things Polish. (Well, except the lack of vowels. And borscht, but that's more Russian than Polish) And, in the interest of full disclosure, Rahree makes a mean pierogi.

I was telling my Polish dad about it and we've decided what the next big HBO series should be. Imagine this....Polish mafia. Modeled on the Sopranos...

The Wojohoitzs.

or maybe The Grywaczs. The Schlabuskis.

I'm feeling it. Oh yeah.


when it rains...

Staring down a week that will more than likely kick me in the ass. It's bad when just looking at the calendar makes me tired.

And to complicate things, friends who I haven't seen for months are starting to surface, wanting to get together.

I really, really want to hang with my buddies...catching up on the news from the last few months with a glass of vino would be heavenly. But there's no way. Until mid-August. August 19th, to be exact. So please, everyone, be patient with me.



I read this story in the Post this morning.

A man breaks into an al fresco dinner party, totally intent on causing harm. Grabs a teenager and holds her at gunpoint. And someone at the party asks him to calm down and offers him a glass of wine.

And evidently it's really good wine.

End of the story? He leaves. After a tipple and a hug. No one is hurt, and the crystal wine glass is found, intact, outside the homeowner's fence.

(The folks at the party go inside, call 911 and freak out. As would I.)

This story - and really, it's a gem of a short story except it really occurred - makes me feel a little better about people in general. It makes me sad for the girl who was his target, and that the dude would feel so alienated that the only way he knew how to get what he needed was by using a gun. But everyone made the right choices in this crazy situation, and it came out with a positive resolution.

Ok. I'm a Pollyanna. But you knew that already. And hell, if nothing else, it proves that wine is good for people in a multitude of ways. :)



A breath of fresh air today, literally. The humidity has given us a brief respite and my time is the office is abbreviated, which equals a lurvely day! On the docket:
  • play a little piano before heading to the office
  • spend a half-day at my desk, knowing that folks - if they bother coming in - will be terribly happy to see my shining face. (Payday is ALWAYS a good day!)
  • did I mention that I'll be spending my office time with the WINDOW OPEN? aaaahhhhh....
  • head to the old neighborhood to daydream and look at a house with my realtor.
  • long walk in old neighborhood, for old times (new times?) sake.
  • bookstore for a new read. have finished all my bedside books, and the ones I have are a little heavier than I'm good for in the summer. {Guns, Germs and Warfare, anyone? Ugh. Among other tomes, I will totally be picking up the last Harry Potter and reserving the new one. Because I still am 12 at heart. And am TOTALLY ok with it.}
  • head home: finish some quick chores while dinner's on the grill.
Yay! Hope your day is similarly relaxing and enjoyable.


Shoes the Full Version

My love of shoes is well documented... hell, I should've been in this video.


betting living through retail

You're looking for something new...you're not sure what it is yet, whether you want something edible, wearable, decorate-the-house-able, but you want something.

Check this out: cool, artsy handmade stuff that's up for auction to raise money for the Susan G. Komen fund. So it's not in your neighborhood - who cares?! It's for a good cause.
(I lost an aunt to breast cancer, so finding a cure is important to me.)

Raise money to fight a nasty disease. Get cool stuff. What' s not to love?

And keep your paws off the kitty notecards - they're SO mine.

Update: those kitty notecards ARE mine! Whee! And Wendy is almost to her goal - which is the coolest thing. Next to my notecards, that is.


they always say that on Lifetime movies...

I have a thing for long skirts. Love them, own more than I should. One particular number, a gray-blue swishy number, is a bit too long for me, even with the addition of heeled sandals, But as long as I have a hand free to grab a handful of fabric when I go up the stairs, it's no biggie.

Last week, I'm wearing said skirt, hiking up the stairs with my hands full of gak. And step on the front of my skirt. And land on my upper arm, while dropping the f-bomb at full voice in the atrium of my office building, my intern looking down on me in alarm. My finest hour, certainly.

Here it is, after a week. It's ugly, but can I tell you how much better it looks now? omg.

But here's the thing: Hubby and I went on that little overnight jaunt to the beach for the 4th. And I wore a tank top, because that's all I brought along.

People on the street would not meet my husband's eyes. They saw a larger, strapping guy, a girl who's significantly smaller with a large, mottled-purple bruise on her arm, and assumed the worst. The irony is, if you know my hubby you know how gentle he is - he's a total softie.

I ended up buying a hoodie to wear, just to hide my arm.

But now it's back to work, is supposed to be in the upper 90-degree range, and I only own short sleeves and tanks. People will have to deal with my yellow-green arm. (Maybe I should try to match the outfit to the bruise?)

And if someone stares? Well, I'll just tell 'em how good I look compared to the other guy...


man vs wild

Have you seen this show? Where this guy - Bear something - parachutes into the wild (Amazon/Outback/Colorado Mountains) with only a knife, a bottle of water and, if it's cold, a flint to start a fire. Dude makes his own rafts, kills his own food (ew.), wears his boxers on his head (can you say CHAFING?) and actually drank his pee. On tv.

Full disclosure: if someone dropped me into the middle of any of these scenarios, I'd curl up into a ball and weep. I have a healthy dose of respect towards this man and his survival skills.

But someone please remind me of this one fact when I start to bitch about my job.
Last minute crisis? No problem.


Ladies, one guess as to who is holding the remote control on this fun-filled Friday evening. Next time he gets up it's chick flick time. Let's see how Man vs Wild does against Miranda Priestly...


Am I bothered?

This is one of my new favorites...that really is Tony Blair. Awesome.

WAY better than Barney

A friend, M, has been singing the praises of Dyson vacuum cleaners for years. Our old green beater finally died, and we ordered the big purple, pet-hair-eating Dyson.

And M says to me "You'll want to vacuum every day. It's addicting."

I scoff - I mean, have you seen my house? I'd prefer to do less housekeeping, not more.

We get home this afternoon and the box is on our stoop. It took me about a half hour to figure out how to use all the parts, which almost killed the deal. I have a Master's degree but cannot figure out how to assemble a vacuum. That means I'm not meant to use it, right? Or that I'm just plain ol' dumb.

Anyway, I fired it up, ran it up the stairs, and took a look in the bin.

And yet, totally awesome. I'm hooked.

My new best friend is purple, loves cat hair, and is not afraid of the monsters under my bed.



Nothing new or exciting to report. It's been several years since I've taken antibiotics, and I remember now why they always tell you to take the full dose. Because after the first week you feel 100% better! Except for your stomach, which always feels way worse.

Saltines and flat coke for supper...yum.