Tuesday Randomness

The turkey is done, most of the leftovers have been picked over and the tree is up. . .which means that my parents trek up to Nashville was successful. Oh and Wook is still alive, despite my dad’s threat of hurting him should he show attitude.

  • I have now proven to my mom that I can actually keep my place neat
  • My guest room is now spiffed up and even comes with a tv, so Bird, it is time for a big girls weekend
  • I pulled a lazy Amy moment after Christmas last year by not packing my ornaments back into their respective boxes, this should be interesting when I pull them out tomorrow night
  • The tree is up and of course I have at least one strand of lights not working
  • Wook has become reacquainted with the black pepper. . .it is the only thing that makes him stop chewing on the tree
  • I tried the bitter apple spray as well as Tabasco, he loved them both
  • I have a neurotic cat
  • I was half watching DWTS last night and was once again reminded why I dislike Derek. The pro is known for breaking rules and is rewarded time and again for this. Sometimes it seems like those who do not play by the rules, cheat or lie win.
  • If Big Ben doesn’t play this Sunday, I may just cry. I need the Steelers to win, more importantly, I want the Ravens to lose
  • Ole Miss won the Egg Bowl this past weekend, Notre Dame is still undefeated and my fantasy football is limping into the final stretch
  • I have a million and one Christmas movies and specials I must watch this season
  • I finally retired my size 16 (ouch! How did I manage to get that big???) jeans after a rather embarrassing day at work last week.
  • I don’t get how Justin Beiber can walk around with his pants that low all the time
  • I now fit comfortably in my old size ten jeans and picked up another pair on Black Friday
  • Next up, I need to deal with my stomach. I shouldn’t have the mom pooch, I’ve never had a kid!
  • My dad is now the proud owner of an iPhone 4S, this is going to be interesting
  • I have managed to end up with a Pittsburgh Steelers player follow me on Twitter. . .

And with visions of a Pittsburgh win this Sunday, I am going to hit the hay. I am also going to dream of snow, a cozy fire and a couple of classic Christmas movies. Crap, I need to grab the pepper and head off the cat before he gets into the tree again. . .

What Men Want. . .

I still take issue with Mel Gibson and his rants but I do enjoy watching What Women Want from time to time. I thought about that movie when I read a column last night in The Daily Mail UK. Tracey Cox, a columnist for the paper, has had a couple of interesting topics in the past week. The first one I read discussed the age old question; can men and women really be friends? while yesterday’s column was discussed what men wanted in women.

I could write volumes on my experiences with men as friends and as well as my thoughts on what they want in a mate. Actually, scratch that, I could write volumes on what NOT to do when it comes to the opposite sex. As Stace says, I have the most rotten luck when it comes to dating.

But let’s focus on the column Ms. Cox wrote . . . I have always been in the camp that believed most men wanted leggy model types. The reality shows us that the world isn’t overrun with model types but after years of watching movies, tv shows and perusing magazines we have forgotten this tidbit. Instead, we pluck, shave, highlight and diet 98% of our lives away. We strive to become these characters we watch and read forgetting that they have the help of a trainer, stylist, lots of money, lighting and the all important airbrushing.

Per Ms. Cox, several studies have been conducted to find out what it is exactly that men want in women. I was actually speechless when I read that most men are interested in the spark, an emotional connection instead of sexiness. I have been operating under the guise that it was looks first, then personality. While I will never be sexy (kind of hard when you look like you are 12 years old without makeup) my personality is kind of kick ass. Well, my personality works well with a guy’s guy. The bluntness and crassness seems to be polarizing to some guys but I won’t change my personality just to make them more comfortable.

It turns out that there are guys out there that want the nice girl. Of course if we were simply surveying the guys in my past the results would be different. I am completely honest about my penchant for bad boys. While I have grown up and moved on from that, it seems I still can’t pick a guy to save my life. Even when things *seem* perfect; the relationship ends, sometimes by my doing and sometimes their doing.

A blip on my relationship radar recently has reinforced that just maybe I am not meant to have that other half. He was a great friend, we spent a lot of time together just hanging out. As usual, I was the last to know that he might be interested. As Bubba put it, “Gee, I didn’t see that coming out of left field,”  dripping with sarcasm. Apparently everyone who knew us saw it coming, why no one clued me in on this little tidbit I will never know.

Unfortunately, just as quickly as it happened it ended. An ex-girlfriend came back into the picture and he went running back. Of course, there is a lot more to the story but I will refrain. I had heard a lot about their relationship from him and I likened it to the one I had with Bubba. A drama filled, roller coaster relationship where each person brought out the worst in the other with a lot of the past times that were once good thrown in for good measure. Needless to say, this knocked me on my ass and confirmed my thoughts on dating.

I guess the worst part has to be I was completely content being single when I moved back home. I was just so freakin’ happy to be back, with my circle of friends and everything that I loved that I didn’t really care about being single. I loved being around my guy friends, being myself (that kick ass personality that per the article stated men cared more about) that I didn’t care that nights out meant coming home to only a cat. None of that matter because I had forgotten what it was like to have someone around in that way. And really, what you don’t know is missing will not be missed.

We both shared there had been flashes of something *more* but he wanted to be completely done with his ex before moving forward. Me? I didn’t know what I was missing and I didn’t think he would be interested. He told me one night that it was over, he was done with the roller coaster; I took it in, not really knowing what to think or say. Then it happened and since we already knew each other’s story . . . we skipped that whole awkward beginning of a relationship. And I was happy, disgustingly happy. He was surprisingly open, kind, sweet and thoughtful. Sure, I knew what kind of guy he was before but when you cross the friend line, you see a whole other level.

Since I hadn’t seen this coming a mile away, I most definitely did not see what was coming next. The drama roller coaster came skidding up in front of him and he hopped right back on board. I was knocked down, just like Charlie Brown while trying to kick the football and lost a great guy and a friend. The real kick in the pants comes from my personal experience with the on again, off again relationship. I know that nothing I say will make a difference. He’s stubborn like me and will keep trying to shove that square peg into the round hole. I also see what my friends saw when I was going through this a million years ago. As a friend, I feel completely helpless because I can’t make him see reason. Actually, you do see reason, even agree with it but you keep waiting for the same effort to return a different result. Square peg, round hole.

As a more than a friend, I am heartbroken that this destroyed our friendship, I miss him and once again wish that none of it had happened. Now knowing how fun it was, how it just made sense and that it was actually very easy to cross that line makes me mad and disappointed in myself. I knew better but for once I had been completely willing to be open, no prying necessary.

So I did giggle when I started reading Ms. Cox’s columns . . . friends of the opposite sex can be friends but you both have to respect that the line is there for a reason, if you risk crossing that line, you have to be willing to sacrifice that friendship and while it has been assumed that you need to be perfect, men are just looking for what we are looking for. . . a nice person that you can connect with, have fun and be comfortable around. And here I have been so worried that I couldn’t pull off the sexy vibe.

And yes, I still wish that our mutual friends would have smacked me upside the head so I would have seen any and all of this coming. He was quite unexpected and I think that is what cuts the deepest. Good times. And probably by tomorrow, men will decide they want something totally different. I happen to think they are worse than women in some aspects.

Pinching Myself

I am still pinching myself and the good fortune of getting to move back home. There is a part of me that feels like I have never been away and then the other part that remembers how homesick I felt for two and a half years. I keep waiting to wake up in my old apartment but thankfully I wake up each morning, on Central time, in Nashville and to everything that made my daily routine just so good. I took it for granted back then and now I just smile and realize that even if I do have a bad day, I am where I want to be.

This past week has been a blur, a lot of learning new things as well as spending time with old friends. I was notorious for invoking the no going out on a school night for many years. In fact, Bear, called me out on this a couple of months before I moved to Chattanooga. He called it via text, exactly what I was doing, so I knew that when I moved back home I had to change this.

I don’t want to go out every night, but it does help you realize that you have friends and they do care about you. So I spent some time with the Queen on Tuesday evening and as I was driving back home I was pinching myself because, hey! I am driving back to my apartment in a city that I adore and I don’t have to rush back to Chattanooga.

Thursday evening rolls around and I had a hankering for wings, so I changed from my work clothes to some jeans and a t-shirt and headed back out. Once I got to BW3 and placed my order I texted Bear. When he got there he asked what I was doing in town and I laughed and said, well I moved back. Apparently I am not in his news feed for FB. We laughed, made fun of each other and talked about football, because really, that is one of the things we have always talked about.

He then mentioned a bar that he sometimes goes to and said, come on, are you going home or do you want to go there. The old me would have said I was going home and I would have been a good girl. In an effort to force myself out a bit more I said sure. And off we went.

We watched some of the Little League World series (Go Goodlettsville!) and I shared just how stupid I am when it comes to baseball. We talked football, best places to watch the games and his fantasy NASCAR teams. Um, yeah, I mocked him for that. Then the bartender comes up giggling and asks if I watched Sex and the City. Turns out the owner is friends with John Corbett who played Aidan.

Tangent: People, I spent six years, every Sunday night with a group of my girlfriends eating, drinking and watching this show. To say I am a fan is a slight understatement. We even gathered a group of girls together to see the first movie in the theater and smuggled in cheap champagne in cans to celebrate.

Okay, now where was I? Oh yes, so he may or may not come by. Bear keeps asking who this guy is and I go through a list of what I can remember him from and he still doesn’t know who he is but like I care. This is about me! Mr. Corbett comes in and since the bar has maybe seven people total there, it isn’t really hard to look across and see him.

Oh! One more tangent: There is an unspoken code in Nashville, we don’t bother the stars that we bump into, it is probably more about we all have lives and really, you see Tim McGraw once, you have seen him a hundred times. No biggie. But to the dismay of my dad, I don’t bother them when they are out, I don’t take pictures or anything else. The other part is I am oblivious most of the time until I have left and then I smack my forehead and say, oh wow, that was such and such.

But Thursday night I broke the code. Minus the two bartenders that night, I was the only female so Mr. Corbett is having a nice evening just hanging out chatting with his friends. As we are getting ready to leave, Bear runs to the restroom and I do the complete dork/goober thing by stopping to ask for a picture. I felt awful about bothering him but there was a small part of me that just wanted to have one picture with him.

You guys, he was so nice. We took several pictures because the one thing the iPhone is crappy about is the camera when it comes to strange lighting. Besides the fact that he was freakishly tall, I was impressed in how kind and willing he was to stop, chat and take time out of his downtime for a complete stranger.

And Bear now has a picture with him and still couldn’t tell you who he is, which is about par for the course. We left, he mocked me and then we agreed that football is going to be a priority for this fall.

Yesterday he made the fatal mistake of mentioning that he was cooking jambalaya. I quickly responded with a “do you deliver?” With the promise of a decent sized tv and the Titans on I got a dinner prepped in my kitchen by Bear. Dude, thanks, it was so good but you really need to become more open to shrimp because the whole shrimp and grits thing is to die for, I promise.

And I didn’t go to sleep until way past midnight; this girl doesn’t stay up late often anymore and the bad part has to be that I still wake up fairly early. After errands, a power nap and trying to get things together for a business trip, I hit the pool. I also got to hang with Bear and his very cute and sassy daughter. Lord help him when she is a teenager, she is going to put him through the paces. I will be there to laugh at him.

But even without a decent nap, I am reminded just how lucky I am. I have a group of friends that are like family to me, a crazy and sometimes very needy cat and a job that I enjoy. Not bad for a girl who broke down earlier this summer, crying about being homesick. And even if I do lose some sleep from time to time, spending time with my friends on a school night is worth it.

So I will continue to pinch myself and smile at lucky I am. I will also know that when the Steelers play the Titans I have one more person I can harass with glee. That might be a fair warning for Nashville, things could get ugly this fall because you have two football junkies that happen to enjoy spending large amounts of Sunday sitting on a bar stool to take advantage of Sunday Ticket.

Packing is for the Birds

I am beat, tired, sore, sweaty and overwhelmed. One would think that after about a million moves, that I would have this down to a science. Um, no. I am very guilty of holding on to things and not wanting to get rid of them. This has become a running joke among friends and my mom.

To date, I have thrown away I don’t know how much stuff as well as left a very large pile of items to be donated and I still have some stuff to pack. Luckily the kitchen is done. That is my biggest challenge with every move. I love to cook and with that love comes a lot of pots, pans, utensils and spices. A huge thank you to Bird who helped me tackle this Saturday. Sister, you are the best thing since sliced bread. Thanks for unpacking that mess two and a half years ago and thank you for packing it back up this past weekend. I would still be staring at it probably debating on chucking it instead of taking it with me.

As usual, mom has given me tips, pointers, mild suggestions and full on insults when it comes to all of my stuff, my cleaning ability and Wook’s litter box. I can safely say I did not get the neat gene from her. I am a disaster when it comes to keeping my place put together.

I also got some help in the muscle department when it came to getting rid of stuff via the dumpster. I don’t think I would have been able to toss what I did if it hadn’t been for some extra hands. I will try my best not to accumulate so much next time. I said try. . .

Two and a half years ago I had to face a reality that I didn’t much care for, it was a bitter pill to swallow. While I did grow up here, home is Nashville and I hope that my friends and family here understand that this feeling isn’t about them. I found myself in Nashville, I grew up there, created a family of friends and could be myself. It’s where I learned to live on my own.

I looked at other cities when looking for a new opportunity, but I always came back to Nashville. I am a city girl at heart and Nashville gives me a taste of the city but always lets me be a couple hours away from the parental unit. Hopefully this go around they will visit. Mom prefers the beach, dad prefers the mountains and Nashville has neither. As I have repeated often to them, at least I didn’t pick up and move to DC or NYC or Baltimore. See this could have been much worse, well at least for them!

I feel like I am coming out of a long term funk, one that was temporarily raised during my time with Chandler. He knew better than I did at the time that this wasn’t home to me and that my happiness was in a city that by all accounts, he strongly disliked.

As I have told the Queen, I am going to make an effort to do more this time. I am going to be thankful every day to be home. I am also going to take advantage of my really long list of restaurants that I want to hit.

But first I have a bit more packing to do, two more sleeps here and then the Wookster and I are heading home. Bless my cat for having to endure the back and forth. I am quite the lucky girl to be heading back there and have a great group of friends that are ready to help me unpack and probably tease me for having so much stuff.

Highs and Lows, All in One Weekend

Another whirlwind of a weekend spent in Nashville and I am still wondering where it went. . .

I am loving the new Nordstrom’s in Nashville, not the price tags of course and I still don’t understand spending $1,500 on a jacket but hey, someone will buy it. I loved seeing all the high end designer frocks but had to wonder who actually wears some of the stuff. My favorite part was the shoe department. I can now say that I have fondled the shoes that one day I will own (and pass down to the next generation). I finally saw my Manolo black patent leather Mary Jane heels. So pretty, so sweet and oh my, so expensive! I also fondled the shoes that Carrie from Sex and the City registered for when marrying herself. Ladies, those are really pretty shoes!

I also got to see several new stores and took in a much needed browsing of pretty things in Kate Spade. I was never a Spade fan but this weekend pushed me over there, a lovely purse in brown and black (no need to ever worry about your purse matching your outfit again!) as well as a Katherine Hepburnesqe pink dress with pockets that I know would just be perfect with those black Manolos. I think it is now time for me to get a second, third and fourth job just so I can have a closet full of all of these pretty things.

Of course the main reason for heading back home was not to window shop, although I guess at this point it would have been the better reason. . . nope, I headed home to go see Ole Miss play Vandy with the boy, one of his college buddies and his girlfriend. Sadly, I can say the only good thing about the game was the bourbon. Ole Miss played hard but couldn’t get it done or even halfway done. This isn’t the team I fell in love with a few years ago and it makes me sad that it was such a bad game. I will not admit defeat though because there is another week of play, so I will go into each game with the attitude of they will win and then hope for the best.

I did get to try out Ninki, a local Japanese restaurant in the Belle Meade area. Yum! Excellent sushi, fried rice to die for and the saki that I tried was good. When our little group wasn’t trying to keep the boy from jumping off the balcony after the loss we talked about food, food trucks, drinks and I think food. We also discussed my aversion to mayo.

This week is going to be full of pulling reports, working out, trying to clean my apartment, catch up on laundry and working out some more. I was scared to death to even look at the scale after my horrible eating habits from the weekend but luckily it wasn’t too bad. Now I just need to get back into my routine and hope that my hard work will start to show. I think that is my biggest challenge right now. I just want to see some results.

And I need to figure out how I can get a couple of pairs of those shoes I fell in love with along with a dress and purse. . . I wonder if Wook would be willing to get a job. . .