oops

I’ve been cutting Bryan’s hair for about half a year now. It started in the fall, after swimming class had trashed his hair and we planned to shave him bald (you may remember the pictures.) A set of clippers and attachments of various lengths have saved him four or five trips to the salon, and I’ve yet to make any major mistakes.

Anyway, it may have been ambitious to approach Bryan’s head with a powerful cutting tool 26 days before You Know What, but that’s just what we did. Unfortunately, I picked up the 1/4″ attachment instead of the 5/8″ attachment and took a fairly significant chunk out of the back.

Oh well. I figure we put a little mascara on it for The Wedding, and between makeup and photoshop, no one will ever notice…

Wow, I wish I were joking.

oh my god the wedding

I just got back from a long weekend in Dallas. In addition to bonding with the immediate family (and meeting the 8 new bovine members), we checked all sorts of things off the wedding TO DO list. It was very refreshing to completely ignore my APA and job search for four days. I had the same feeling on the plane ride home that I used to get when I was going back to teach middle school. (Dread.) But I’m back, powering through.

Here’s a picture. 38 more are up on gallery.

baby cows

first poetry i’ve read in years

I’ve been collecting poems and literature excerpts to work into our wedding in place of, you know, Bible verses. (Suggestions welcome.) I thought I’d toss a random one up here.

I Remember
Anne Sexton

By the first of August
the invisible beetles began
to snore and the grass was
as tough as hemp and was
no color—no more than
the sand was a color and
we had worn our bare feet
bare since the twentieth
of June and there were times
we forgot to wind up your
alarm clock and some nights
we took our gin warm and neat
from old jelly glasses while
the sun blew out of sight
like a red picture hat and
one day I tied my hair back
with a ribbon and you said
that I looked almost like
a puritan lady and what
I remember best is that
the door to your room was
the door to mine.

I found that last bit was just waiting at the end to sock me in the face. This search has involved a lot of teary eyes.

anxiety dreams

It’s April, that frantic month where the pace of my APA (thesis), wedding plans, and arrangements for the future (Germany, my job, a possible move) accelerates toward the deadlines. Everything’s just gotten a touch more desperate. In a wedding-planning calendar my mother and I put together in August, there are no big items this month—though of course there is still plenty to do—except, written across the page: PROBABLY VERY BUSY.

In response, I’ve started having alternating anxiety dreams. Like clockwork, they started the night of April 1. That night it was one of those classic dreams where you discover you’re enrolled in a class that’s about to end, and you haven’t done any of the work. In your first foggy moments of waking up, you think, Crap, I’ve got to get on top of that, and then you remember with relief that you’re not IN a History of Philosophy class.
April 2 it was the wedding. The wedding was tonight; I was making frantic phone calls to find someone to do my hair, and then I realized we didn’t even have a ceremony put together. And then I was showering in a public bathroom and some British lech was making passes at me, and I was like DAMN IT MAN, I’M GETTING READY FOR MY WEDDING.
Last night: death in the family. And being chased through the jungle.

I’ve had all of these dreams before, with varying details, and expect to meet them like old friends many times between now and mid-May. At least there are no school children involved.

Updates on the big stuff

I was already familiar with the paper we were discussing in my education reform law class (this one), so I spent the time making a long list of things I’d meant to write about but hadn’t. 2007’s not been a great year for the self-indulgent internet posting. But I intend to catch up over the next few days. The first installment: quick updates of the spring’s major themes.

1. The APA*/work – School and work overlap almost completely this semester, which is great to the extent it means I earn $20+/hour for school work, but lousy in that it cuts my total workload in half. And having a light workload itself is great since it allows me to plan a wedding, hunt for a post-graduation job, and keep up with Grey’s Anatomy, but lousy in that I have trouble motivating myself without the urgency of deadlines and the feeling of being in over my head. So, the APA is inching along. Meanwhile, the office where I’ve been working since June (and that’s hosting my APA) is going through one of its annual crumbling cycles, wherein the bulk of the staff is fired or quits in disgust. I’m still enjoying my little corner of the work, but I am trying not to get caught up in the implosion and am VERY ready to work in an environment that’s a little less toxic and insane.

* Remember? Basically my thesis.

2. The Wedding – Holy shit, we’re getting married in 3 months. Fortunately, things are chugging along, and I don’t think we’ve forgotten any major elements. My mom came out for four days last week, so we could exchange craft projects (invitations, flowers), shop for decorative elements (vases, picture frames, fabric), and do a first fitting with the actual dress (eeeeeeeeeee). I also had a long talk with the officiant a couple of days ago to begin brainstorming about what on earth to do for the ceremony. Bryan and Dad have purchased their wedding suits, in which they look very dashing, and almost all the bridesmaids have chosen their dresses, in which I’m sure they’ll look like beautiful flowers.

3. Miscellaneous – I finally got a library card, so I’ve been keeping myself up late and neglecting all kinds of chores in favor of exciting new books. We’ve cooked several “keeper” recipes, including braised short ribs and coq au vin. I unloaded a month’s worth of photos from our camera, in the process discovering that several people took pictures with it at a very drunken gathering at our place. And Bryan and I are only six lessons away (which means we’ve done 84) from finishing our “Essential German” tapes! Hurrah! Next we’re doing to listen to international newscasts, designed for German beginners. Oh yeah, and on Monday I entered my late mid-twenties, celebrated variously with three remarkable meals, brownies, muffins, flowers, and flip-flops printed with a picture of the World Trade Towers.

Please don’t handcuff me to the cage again.

Enough time has passed since the wholesome family celebration of the birth of our lord Jesus Christ. I can now point you in the direction of my bachelorette party photos. Unfortunately, its timing (so near the holidays) and its location (in California) meant that many people I would have loved to be there could not. What we lacked in attendance, though, we made up in enthusiasm. Not only was the party a chance for the crazier of my teacher friends to meet the crazier of my grad school friends, but it came with a theme, costumes, and so much dancing my legs were sore for two days. It also included the following:

1. pink drinks
2. handcuffs and cowboy hats
3. a drag show
4. cage dancing
5. leaving for the airport on two hours of sleep, still slightly drunk

The pictures can tell the story far better than I. To tempt you, a photo of me, about to get a lap dance from a drag queen:

Leslie, about to get a lap dance

Smarmy delight

Instead of describing the $500 in fabric we bought for the wedding dress, or the mad bleebing Bryan did as we registered for gifts, tonight I’d like to introduce you to a little website called “Go Fug Yourself.” I check it daily for the latest mean gossip about the horrible, horrible things celebrities wear.

There is no redeeming value whatsoever. Unless you count writing like this:

“Are you telling me the success of a Bond reimagining is MORE vital to the foundation of our society than a clean, toned Britney Spears, unmarred by the greasy maulings of the world’s leakiest sperm bank?”

I’ll tell you about the wedding dress later.

Ohhhh, the sweet caress of capitalism

I don’t know how I managed to live in Berkeley for almost a year and a half and resist the lure of the 4th street shopping district. I suppose I was imagining it as the slightly seedy sprinkling of stores across several blocks, four of which you might go into and none of which will tempt you to buy something that Berkeley specializes in. But turns out it’s a little yuppie-but-hip consumerism heaven that has me squarely in its target marketing sights.

My mom I and spent several hours browsing there after a morning of pulling apart and refitting the bodice of a wedding dress (as those of you who know my breasts might imagine, getting a good fit in the top of anything requires some doing). We indulged ourselves at a couple of the chain stores, like the Crate and Barrel outlet and Anthropologie, toodled into an impressive art gallery, and—mindful of our wedding-planning duties—visited four different card/paper stores. Now, I’d been in enough of these to be thoroughly turned off by the binders full of engraved invitations for sale for exorbitant rates, but these stores were a horse of a different color. They* were cute and funky and well-designed and, well, again, things I might actually consider buying. The sensation was novel. I may not be scrawling invitations on post-it notes after all.

*These are all wrapping paper, from just the one store we went to that has a website—but you get the idea.

Priorities

Yes, the Democrats have taken Congress, and they’re getting all tough with Bush on Iraq and yadda yadda. But let’s keep in mind what’s really important, and that is:

WE HAVE CHOSEN A CATERER FOR OUR WEDDING.

My parents are in town for the weekend, and it turns out that we don’t really do anything wedding-related when we’re not with them. So we end up having insane 4-day bouts of ninja wedding planning. Today was day 1. We interviewed and tasted the food of several caterers; we now have one, huzzah. Tomorrow we fit and sew and refit and resew wedding dress patterns. Flowers, invitations, and bridesmaid dresses may also be discussed.

Further updates as events warrant.