Thursday, March 18, 2010

The Lately List

Here's a quick Top Ten List of stuff going on (because everyone likes a good top ten list):

1) A girl wakes up feeling fine. She walks to the kitchen to get a glass of water and stops to use the restroom. In a matter of minutes she has attached herself to a newly-installed (um, thank goodness) white porcelain tank. This lasts for around 30 mintues. She finds that moaning/humming helps to drown out gagging thoughts of what food made her sick. Pretty soon, nothing feels better than the antique linoleum under her face. Suddenly, about 20 minutes later, she bolts up feeling weak but totally fine. She showers and leaves to lunch with a friend.

So, no one - and I do not exaggerate when I say NO ONE - wants to hear about a person getting sick in a toilet. I am aware of this fact, and yet I recently felt the need to post this recent toxic food/mystery virus experience on Facebook. It was similar, but totally different from my Spanish train food poisoning adventure.

Maybe we're all just human after all, and whether we like it or not, we are fascinated with overcoming what feels like near death...or maybe just with bodily functions...who knows.

2) Target Corporation's National Sales Meeting was recently held at the Target Center here in Minneapolis, where supposedly, 60,000 people attended wearing red shirts and khaki pants. In what felt like slow motion, a giant red tidal wave came over the land of Palomino Restaurant at approximately 5:15 pm. Filling every nook and cranny of the downtown Minneapolis skyway system, the happy, smiling employees of the bullseye Targeted our Tuesday happy hour.

I've never sought to be a in the middle of a big group. It could be because I used to consider myself a non-conformist (now I don't think about it). Maybe it's because I get claustrophobic in tight spaces (see my previous Faulty Barcelona post or ask my big brother Ty about my freak out sessions while squeezing into snowforts as he blocked the entrance). Regardless of how cool these people might be individually, I felt the urge to stay very far away from the clan as my personal homeland security system shot into the Red "severe risk of terrorist attack" zone.

3) I probably walk 10+ miles a day as a hostess at two different restaurants.

4) Buying a high quality handbag at a discount and selling it on eBay for over 4 times the purchase price - to a fashion-savvy doctor in Canada - can pay for about a week of working as a hostess who walks 10 miles a day. That's 70 miles of work, not to mention the priceless realization that I have some amazing taste in fashion!

5) There is nothing EZ about filing taxes when you're an "independent contractor" (freelance writer) and a Fulbright Scholar. I'm not hiding any money, I promise. It really just hasn't been coming in much this year!

6) I have not watched or heard one single television news program for over 2 months. It feels really weird to have no idea what is going on in the world now that my life consists of leading people to upright troughs as fast as possible so their faces don't get crabby at me.

7) I recently watched a grown man go back for three heaping plates of bacon at the Tavern's Sunday brunch. I am going to guess he consumed between 30-40 strips total. Later, I saw thick bacon fingerprints on the windexed panes of glass on the front door. Oh America, why do you give in to the stereotype?

8) I am thrilled to be a part of the VIP press tour at the Coverings Tile and Stone show at the end of April. I'll be reporting on the latest trends in Spanish, Italian, and North American tile design down in Orlando, FL for three days.

9) Earlier today I went to the Maple Grove courthouse to contest an unjustified traffic violation that was given to me on December 13th. While there, I was yelled at by an insolent judge wearing a hot pink scarf. She called me a fool three times because I plead not guilty. Hmm. Last I checked that was my right as an American.

I often encounter people who see me and assume they can get their way because I happen to be good-natured. Perhaps it is because I am not a super confrontational person. Or maybe it's because I don't get highly emotional very much - I tend to speak in a calm, direct manner that is almost too rational in pressure-filled situations. Could it be as simple as how I am perceived to the naked eye though? Like if I had sharper features - like a pointier chin and some angled Glenn Close cheekbones, or piercing dark brown eyes like Demi Moore in GI Jane - it would help. Instead, I'm stuck with rounded blue eyes, blond hair, and nothing remotely "dramatic" about my appearance.

What this judge could not perceive visually is that after 26 years 5 months and 18 days on this planet, I will only get more obnoxiously calm, direct, and absolutely stubborn if a person treats me without the same respect I give them off the bat. Today I rode the disdainful rollercoaster of her misdirected rage with the legal system until she had to stop spouting to hear me say nothing more than "With all do respect your honor, I still plead not guilty." With that, she told me phone my parents to see if they would make the same foolish (there's that word again) mistake. I thought, she did NOT just tell me to call my parents. With that line, I stood taller, looked at her directly as she her words turned to mush in my ears, and again, when the silence arrived and the questioning eyes returned I answered "Thank you for your opinion. But...I am not guilty, ma'am. I'd like a trial." She shooed me away from the podium to set my court date. As I turned away from the clerk's desk, a lawyer representing someone else asked which court date I chose. He said I did a nice job. As I left the courtroom with my head held high, I received a smattering of smiles from the others waiting to stand their own ground and for an instant I thought that I just might have missed my calling as a lawyer...

10) After I left the courtroom I went across the street to Ridgedale and bought a few tank tops to prepare for the warm weather and to blow off steam from the court incident. It was then that I realized why I have chosen a career path that does not involve verbal battles on a daily basis!