Dork-o-Rama: The Random Thoughts of a Total Goofball

Embracing the Dork Side....Because Life is Too Short to Take Yourself Too Seriously

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Time keeps on slippin'...slippin'... slippin....'

Tick tock tick tock tick tock tick tock....

I had a whole new post all planned out but am simply running out of time to get to it before my little jaunt to New York City. I'm leaving on a jet plane tomorrow morning and somehow have overbooked this day... and didn't consider how early I'll have to get up tomorrow to make my flight....(it's a good thing I'm going to the City That Never Sleeps, since I won't be getting any tonight).

And since my eyeliner is considered a danger to national security, packing is so much more complicated these days...

At any rate, I'll take loads of silly pictures and toast you all while I'm there. A bientot!

Monday, May 28, 2007


Don't you just love it when current events dredge up ugly stuff from your own life?

I wasn't even going to write about this -- I've been sitting on it for awhile -- but I can't resist. My heart went out to Dina McGreevey when her husband came out, because I could see the pain in her eyes at that infamous news conference. I'd seen that look in my mirror. I'll give you a moment to go read that story...


One of the reasons it was so hard for me to tell people -- even my closest friends -- what was going on with the ex-hub and I (click here if you've missed the back story) was that I was convinced that people would judge ME. That it reflected on some major flaw in me that I ended up marrying a gay man.

And once I did start telling people -- a lot later, when I was a lot stronger -- there were many people who asked me if I knew he was gay. I'm sorry, but do I LOOK like a moron? I wouldn't have married him if I'd known. I've had loads of gay people in my life, and I've loved them all, but I had and have no interest in marrying one. And contrary to what one of those authors in that story suggests, there is no checklist. Or maybe it's just me; I try not to subscribe to stereotypes. I think it's dangerous to marginalize people because I know I've been marginalized at times and I hate it.

This quote rings so true:

"The first reaction is shock and disbelief and some relief, because it explains some unspoken problems that seem to be lurking there," she said. "The biggest shock is not the revelation but the fact that they've been betrayed and deceived for so many years."

Exactly. We'd definitely had our problems, and he did a fine job of pointing the finger at me for all of them. And because I was so fucked up, I believed it. So there definitely was a small sense of relief when the truth came out. And it explained a lot of what had happened over the course of our relationship.

Also, in my case, my anger and hurt stemmed from the notion that once he started to realize who he was and started acting on it, he didn't bother to take me or my feelings into consideration, even after all the years we'd spent together. He couldn't be bothered to tell me who he was.

And I'm absolutely fascinated by this quote...

"I would rather stop this behavior than go through a divorce," he said. "I don't want to ask my wife to be in a marriage with me where she's sanctioning me to go out and screw other guys."

....because that's exactly what the ex wanted from me. He wanted to stay married to me, but to have relationships with men. As I've said here before, I don't remember taking THAT vow. But that guy quoted up there? Is going to break his wife's heart one day. He can't stop that behavior. You can't deny who you are, no matter how much you want to.

I even understood that when my own heart was breaking.

Friday, May 25, 2007


(*i totally stole that word from her.)

I'll be in New York in a week and I can't wait.

I have a ticket to see the New York City Ballet. They're doing an all-Jerome Robbins program. At Lincoln Center. I'm thrilled beyond belief. I've wanted to see them since I was a teenager, and I can't believe they're doing Robbins while I'm there.

I'm finally going to see The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. I was seriously bummed that I missed it when it was here last year...but something came up that kinda threw me for a loop.

I might go see another show, but I can't decide which one. Plus, I don't really want to schedule every moment of this trip. I need to be able to wander. And New York's a great city for wandering.

This is only my second solo vacation (although I do have friends in NYC that I'll be seeing, so it's not like I'll be alone the whoooole time). See, one of the regrets I have about my life is that I haven't traveled as much as I'd like, but when you're financially strapped, single, female, and your friends can't vacate when you can, it's tough. But about 3 1/2 years ago, I was desperately in need of a complete departure from my life, so I took off by myself for five days in Hawaii.

I thought I'd be lonely. I was, at times. The nights were the most challenging. But I also really liked being on my own. I could do whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. I didn't have to wait for anyone else to get ready or to agree on plans. Some people I encountered seemed to be surprised to find that I was traveling solo, but I also found a lot of really nice people along the way. Restaurant staffers and bartenders went out of their way to make me feel comfortable. One night, at dinner, the couple at the table next to mine struck up a conversation with me that lasted through the entire meal. When I did the Diamond Head hike (at the crack of dawn, I might add), I ended up spending most of the hike with a really nice couple from Boston.

It was a really great vacation, even better than I'd expected. All I really wanted was to spend a lot of quality time at the beach, and I did. And more.

I also took along my journal, which served as a sort of security blanket while I was dining, and sent tons of postcards that I wrote out while having Mai Tais. I'd still like to find a way to sit at a restaurant table or a bar alone, without reading material or a project and be comfortable, but I'm not there yet.

Maybe soon I will be. Maybe even next week.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

I've never looked better...

Me, as a Boticelli. Me, Manga-style.
Me as a Modigliani.

"Normal" me.
You gotta try this thing here.

The Queen of Cheese has (but for some reason, I can't find her pics now...). Miss Angela has. Now, you do it! It's fun!

Saturday, May 19, 2007


I don't think my apartment's ever been dirtier.

I don't mean cluttered; there's an average amount of stuff around that I need to pick up, but it's not too bad. I've seen worse in here.

I'm talking about actual dirt -- mostly dust, and the hair that seems to leap off my head constantly. I haven't actually cleaned house in... oh... three weeks?

BLEAH. I'd show you a picture, but it's too horrifying. My bathroom floor is especially grody, with all the hair.

I've simply been too busy to clean. I've hardly even been home for the past few weeks. And if I have the choice to clean or to relax... I think you know what I'm choosing.

I thought I'd get some housecleaning done today, but then I found out my friends Teri and Jim from SoCal were going to be in town. I haven't seen them in aaaages. I thought I could still cram in some laundry (the stuff I don't send out) after seeing them for brunch, but we were having such fun that it seemed ridiculous to cut things short in favor of a menial task.

After all, isn't it better to spend time with people you love than doing stupid, mindless chores?

Now, would any of you people I love like to come help me with my stupid, mindless chores?



Thursday, May 17, 2007

If I could do the things I want to you, you'd be changing all your plans...

Good lord, she's amazing.

Joss Stone, that is. Talented. Gorgeous. Utterly charming on stage. And just 20 years old.

Yeah, I'm a little jealous. But I like her too much to hate her. And she put on an incredible show, even though she didn't do a full version of this. (You gotta love a girl who covers the White Stripes!)

So before her concert the other night, my "date" and I went to the Taint for a couple of pre-show cocktails. While I was waiting at the bar for the round I was buying, I noticed some random guy eyeing me.

He suddenly says, "Is your name Terry?"

Uh, yes, I reply... puzzled. Do I know this guy?

"Smith?"* he asks.

Uh... yeah. Now I'm even more puzzled. I don't know who this guy is.

Until he said his name.

Turns out he's someone I knew in college. He was the lech, the Guy Who Hits On Everyone Who Has A Vagina. But he was a good person to know, because he was already working in our field, and knew a lot of people. It was easy enough to ignore his advances then because I had a boyfriend (yeah, the ex-hub).

I'm still stunned he remembered me, and even recognized me. He said my laugh was familiar. Oookay.

"Is it still Smith?" he asks.

And then I realize he's still a lech, 20 years later**, because he's trying to figure out whether I'm married.

Instead of just saying yes, I say, "It's always been Smith... even when I was married."***

Apparently, I am too prideful not to tell this bozo that yes, I was married once. I SHOULD have challenged him about why he was asking.

Instead, we engaged in some small talk about what we're each doing career-wise (and I was more than a little surprised to find that he knew where I worked until last summer). Turns out he works in the same 'hood as I do, and, of course, he thinks we should get together sometime!

Yeah. Great. I'll be working very hard to make that happen.

See, this is the type of guy who typically approaches me. I catch other guys checking me out from time to time, but they don't approach. But the guys who hit on all women? Yeah, they'll make an effort.

There are few things that make me feel more like a leper.

*clever pseudonym, eh?

**it struck me as i wrote this that i was dealing with this particular lech around the same time ms. stone was born. holy moly...

***i kept my name for many reasons. his name was ridiculous. it didn't flow well with mine, and you have to spell it for everyone. i'd been a "smith" for 26 years before i got married, and i didn't feel like giving up my identity to take an unpronounceable name (not that i judge other women who DO change their names; this is all about me). and finally, i kept my name to honor my father. i feel like that's a tangible reminder of him.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Waaaaay outside the comfort zone...

This month in hula class, Kumu's making us chant by ourselves.

Let me back up a bit, and bring you this information about hula from Wikipedia:

"Hula is a dance form accompanied by chant or song. It was developed in the Hawaiian Islands by the Polynesians who originally settled there. The chant or song is called a mele. The hula dramatizes or comments on the mele.
There are many styles of hula. They are commonly divided into two broad categories: Ancient hula, as performed before Western encounters with Hawaiʻi, is called kahiko. It is accompanied by chant and traditional instruments.
Hula as it evolved under Western influence, in the 19th and 20th centuries, is called ʻauana. It is accompanied by song and Western-influenced musical instruments such as the guitar, the ukulele, and the double bass."

(See, you get an education here along with the extreme dorkiness!)

What we've been learning since last summer is hula kahiko, so we dance to chanting and drumming on a double-gourd (ipu heke). And we're learning the chants as well. Some of these chants are done without an accompanying dance, such as the one we're doing in front of class.

There's a pretty good example of what I'm talking about here (and wow, the dancing after the solo chant is pretty amazing too). Not only do we have to get the words right, we're supposed to sound like we know what we're saying, and do it with the proper vibrato. It's pretty challenging.

What is my point? It's like singing a solo. And I'd much rather dance a solo than sing one. I've done karaoke, and this is nothing like that. For one thing, there's no alcohol in hula class. Or loud music. Or loud people. Still, I got up and chanted tonight, mainly because I didn't want to spend the next two weeks stressing about it.

HOLY CRAP. My heart was in my throat as soon as I raised my hand and said I'd go first tonight. (If I had any balls, I'd have done it last week, as five of my hula sisters and brothers did.) I am pleased to report that I got it right, after a false start in a key that's too high for me, and didn't vomit from the nerves. I even managed to make eye contact with my hula brothers and sisters, while smiling (the chant is all about welcoming people, so to do it with a scowl or a look of terror is entirely inappropriate).

And now I don't have to worry about it anymore. Until he makes us do something like this again...

Sunday, May 13, 2007

What a difference a few hours make...

I have never been a morning person. It has always been easier for me to stay up late than it is to get up early, which is why I remember the early days of "Saturday Night Live" so well. It's not like I had a late-night social life when I was up until the wee hours in my early adolescence...

So it's always been amusing to me -- and quite torturous -- that for nearly my entire professional career, I've had to get up in the middle of the night.

Literally. For about eight and a half years, I got up at 1:30 a.m. to start work at 3 a.m. That's why it felt like such a big deal when I got to sleep all the way until 4:30 a.m. for several years after that, to be at work at 7 (this was in my public transit days, which accounts for that extra time). In the middle of the night, three hours makes a huuuuuuge difference.

But that difference didn't last long. I've still had to battle my circadian rhythms to fall asleep at a decent hour, and then to get up in the dark. But mine is a 24-hour business, and I knew that going in, when I was still young and bounced back easily from sleep deprivation.

Since starting the new job last summer, my wake-up time has been 5:30. Still far earlier than my body would like, but the latest since 1991.

Until now. I'm now starting work at 9:30. 9:30! My GOD. It's so strange to wake up for work AFTER sunrise. If I go out at night, I don't spend part of my evening fretting about how much sleep I'm going to get, because I don't have to get up until 7:30. 7:30! I can't tell you how amazing that is. That's almost... normal!

I've actually managed to get up early a few times to go for walks before work. That, though, is a challenge, because I just don't wake up quickly. You'd think that once I'm out the door and the blood is pumping, I'd be fine... but I still feel all bleary and lame for the entire walk. It's a struggle, but it's a necessary one.

Now, though, I'm doing that stupid adolescent thing of staying up as late as I can... so I'm still running the risk of shorting myself on sleep... especially since many times, I've awakened earlier than I have to -- it's much noisier later in the morning than I'm used to -- and can't get back to sleep. I think my brain is still having trouble adjusting to the notion of being able to sleep after sunrise on work days.

It's weird not being the first person in my building to get up in the morning.


Hey, remember a couple of weeks ago when I mentioned a visit from my friend Cindy, her daughter, her niece, and her hubby? I never said anything more about it, did I?

They were doing the college tour around the state (I can't believe the girls are about to be seniors in high school), and that's why they ended up in my fine city, even though Cindy and her husband don't actually want them attending school so far from home.

So even though it was raining, we took our mandatory trip to Ghirardelli Square for sundaes, and then dragged Cindy's hubby to the Haight, which he just loooooved. (hah.) Then off to Coit Tower, where we watched Cindy's niece Lindzey take a boatload of pictures of herself. I wish I had one to show you here, but apparently, she takes a lot of self-portraits -- with the camera above her, on an angle -- for her MySpace page.

Below is our attempted homage to Lindzey's photographic style, when Cindy and I got together in her hotel bar on that rainy night:

Yes, we look like freaks. Nice cleavage on Cindy, though.
The overexposed look is always flattering. So glad I have just a few grey roots showing.
Blurry and dark is good too. (I hadn't even had a drink yet).
Overexposed AND freaky!
I'm not sure the bartender understood why we turned down his offer to take our picture. I don't think he understands great art...

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

The air conditioner's back on...

See that? That's our infamous fog, creeping back into my 'hood this evening. A welcome sight.
Today, anyway.... Here's the same spot, about 20 minutes later...

Our fog moves faaast! Foghorns are blaring... it's kinda cool to hear them from Chez Dorky.
And I can sleep tonight. Ahhhhhh...

(i promise... a more substantive post is coming. soon.)

Monday, May 07, 2007

Soon I'll be bitching about the fog again: a hot-ku...

oh, sweet ocean breeze
wherefore art thou, onshore flow?
it's too hot to sleep

Sunday, May 06, 2007

I should be sleeping...

...but it's about 1000 degrees in my apartment right now, so I'm waiting until I'm even sleepier than I already am to hit the hay. We're having a very warm spell at the moment, and once the ocean breeze (which is more like a gale force wind, much of the time) goes away, I start roasting.

So much going on. So little time to write about it. I haven't even had a chance to tell you about my friend Cindy's visit, which was what... two weeks ago now?? It's been an extraordinarily busy week at work -- one that started very early last Sunday morning. Throw in a hula class, a couple of appointments, a couple of social occasions, and a Saturday work commitment... and what you have is an extremely exhausted dork.

But I'm excited because amid all the chaos I bought myself an early birthday gift: plane tickets to NYC! I'm going early next month. I can't wait. More knockoff purses! More pashminas! More gluten-free restaurants to try! More wandering in a city I love!

I'm just hoping the humidity waits until after I leave...

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

You know you have a real friendship when... can effectively communicate non-verbally across the table at a formal-ish work-related dinner without anyone else noticing.

No, I'm not going to explain further.

Just know that it happened a few hours ago and I'm still laughing about it.

I heart my friends.