Friday, August 23, 2013

20's Bucket List


I don't have a traditional "Bucket List" because I have time table anxiety and I get panic attacks when I have to plan things 3 days in advance, so the idea of making a whole list of things I have to do before I die will ensure I just stay in my room watching bad reality TV on Netflix for the rest of my years. However, I do constantly add/deduct from a set of reasonable and unreasonable goal posts for each of my age brackets. I guess breaking the Bucket List up into 10 year chunks is just easier for me to process (it also makes procrastinating on Living My Life a breeze).

Growing up, I always thought 30 was the age where I'd officially be an adult. Like, have a mortgage, settled down with life partner, established in my fabulous career type of adult. Buuuut, I'm 29 and I'm not there yet. Clearly. And while I have achieved most of the traditional bad decisions bench marks of the typical upper-lower-middle-class-girl-college-grad 20-something experience, there are still a few that I'd like to hit as I round out this second decade of Audrey.

Henceforth, the remains of My 20's Bucket List:

1. Go blonde

2. Travel by myself in a foreign country where I don't speak the language

3. Live by myself

4. Learn how to mix killer cocktails

5. Perform routine maintenance on my car by myself (i.e. no more depending on the Oil Change Fairy, aka Dad)

6. Learn how to use my credit card only in a life or death emergency situation

7. Fully realize that "life or death emergency situation" does not mean trips to the salon, impulsive travel, sales at Anthropologie, etc.

8. Write second novella.

9. Develop a functional wardrobe

10. Pull off [successful] Bank heist

11. Acquire Pulitzer prize

ok, so maybe those last 3 are pipe dreams. And I'm really, really close to checking most of these off my bucket list in the next 3 months (wow that was a lot of 3's in one sentence).

What's on your age-bracket-bucket list?

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Hello, 29

And thus, I've officially entered the last year of my 20's.

I'm not terribly sad about it. Neurotic? yes. Sad? Naaaah. Yesterday was filled with so much love and awesome that it's hard to feel bad about aging. And things in my life are on a solid upswing for the first time in a long time. So yeah, bring on the life.

I have a great family. Amazing friends. Lovely boyfriend. Stable job. Awesome trips coming up. Adorable fur children. Moving out in two weeks. Things really are great :)

You know what also feels good? Coma naps by an open window on a sunny, 59* degree day. What is it about approaching cool weather that makes everything feel a little bit better? Even the PMS monster that's trying to shit all over my parade is being kept (mostly) at bay.

And with that, I'm going to go sleep in front of the open window again. I'll wake up stuffed up so bad I'll hardly be able to breathe, but it'll be worth it.

Things feel good, man.


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

FM Radio

"Thanks for listening into the Delilah Show. On the line is Christine. She wants to hear a song for her daughter. Isn't that right, Christine?" Delilah's voice is soft butter, like silk flowing through your ear canals. Low, smooth, comforting.

"Yes. She's very special to me. She has HIV and I do too. She was born with it. I'm having a hard time trying to get custody of her and I love her so much." Christine's voice is scratchy, but hopeful.

"How old is your daughter, Christine?"

"She's 15."

"And where is she now?"

"She with my sister. I'm a recovering addict, putting my faith in Jesus and I'm 15 months sober now. I take it one day at a time. But it's hard to get a job and I just want to be with her again."

"Do you get to see her often?"

"I see her every other weekend."

"That's good."

"Yeah. But I want her to live with me again. She's my whole world."

"What are some words that come to you when  you think about your daughter?"

"She's like my Northern Star. She's always there. She's a fighter, she's brave, she's got faith like I've got faith. As long as she believes it's all going to be ok, I know it'll be ok. And she's always with me no matter where she is and where I am. She was real sick for a long time and I thought I would die without her. Now she's strong and fighting and I love her so much. And I want her to know that I'm always there for her, no matter what. I don't want her to be sick anymore. I don't want to be sick anymore."

"That's lovely, Christine. Here's a song for you and your daughter."

"Thank you, Delilah."

"You're welcome, baby."

Cindy Lauper's Time After Time begins. I smile uncomfortably at the radio, 97.1 FM staring blankly back at me. I sing through the chorus: "If you're lost you can look and you will find me/Time after Time", letting my throat tighten, letting myself get a little vahklempt. At once I am a recovering junkie mother reaching out through this summer honey radio DJ, reaching out to my daughter, who I poisoned. I hate myself for my choices but I'm trying to hate myself less. It's a transforming moment. I'm moved. Moved by sad pop FM.

Cindy's voice fades out and another song begins without interlude from Delilah the DJ. The song is Cups by Anna Kendrick. The chorus of the song is "When I'm gone/When I'm gone/You're gonna miss me when I'm gone." Once again, I'm a twenty something suburbanite giving a side eye and a slight chuckle at the morbidity of the radio play list. I feel guilty, a knee-jerk reaction.

I scan for a different radio station. But I know I'm going to go home and google Delilah the DJ. I know I'm probably going to tune in tomorrow. I'm a monster. But I'm ok with that. I've been moved by sad pop FM.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Dinosaur Weekend!

Mary and I organized a little girls-only trip to her father in law's lake house, and she threw together the coolest Dinosaur Party in celebration of me turning into a dinosaur (i.e. almost 30). There was no shortage of champagne, delicious food, thunderstorms, lake hopping, golf cart cavorting, hula hooping, steak grilling, and of course, dinosaur swag.

And, surprisingly, 8 women survived a booze-fueled, semi-stormy weekend at the lake without getting slaughtered by axe-murderers or mutant lake people or even Sharknadoes.


this table covered with gift bags and masks and blow up raptor and pinatas and period sticks, oh my!

this straight OG

these storrrrrms

this fancy bitch 

these lakeside hula hoopers

that perfect post-storm weather

This mother and her fur child

This delicious ice cream cake

These amazing pinata stuffings 

These greedy pinata poachers

This awesome sisterhood

Weekend mini-vacays are the best. Especially when you can spend them with amazing people in perfect weather having spectacular fun times.

here's to birthdays!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Texting while Driving

Maybe I've been watching too many re-runs of 16 & Pregnant on, but I've seen a rash of "Don't Text and Drive" PSAs. They all have the same pattern:

A) victim in near-vegetable state sits in a sad looking living room with a functional family member who recounts the accident that left the victim in a near-vegetable state
Obviously distraught person sits in a sad looking living room recounting the accident where they killed someone

B) "This is the text they were sending/reading when the accident happened." Then, black screen, inconsequential 4 word or less text message comes up, either:
"On my way"
"where r u"

C) functional family member basically damning the person who caused the accident/sad person damning themselves


Driving impaired--by anything or anyone--is dangerous. Obviously. And people really shouldn't text and drive. Again, obviously. But I text and drive constantly. I'd say I'm good at it, because I enjoy bragging about things that I'm not supposed to be good at (like sleeping in class without getting caught or stealing money from family members*). But watching these commericals made me think. I text a lot of nonsense. What would happen if these were the last communications I had in this realm?


I think I'm going to re-think my texting while driving habit. Just, you know, out of dignity's sake.

*juuuuuuust kidding. maybe.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Goodbye, July!

Holy crap, it's August already? Nice.

I haven't been very present here on the ol' blog, mostly because there hasn't been a lot going on. Well, yeah, there has, totally exciting things like:

I made my bed every day this month.

I'm three payments away from eliminating all my credit card debt forever.

I'm 52 days away from Beer-n-BFF Oktoberfest.

I'm 88 days away from Badass Brooklyn Adventure.

I turned down a promotion at work and didn't get fired (well, haven't been fired--yet.)

I endured 3 days of heat stroke after working outside and drinking too much water during the heat wave (note to self: don't deplete your sodium levels).

I made brown buttered spaghetti and decided it's the best pasta, ever.

I fell asleep every time I sat still for longer than 30 minutes.

I had two house sitting adventures.

I've missed every summer blockbuster I wanted to see.

So yeah. You haven't been missing much.

Mel's Big Lebowski 30-faux birthday

so much coffee


Neve and Shayne

At the winery. FYI, goat cheese stuffed figs are the best snacks ever.

I house sat for a co-worker. This cat is basically her boyfriend's daughter. They had a nanny cam and 2 pages of care instructions. Also, new demands for my dream house include: cathedral ceilings and large sunny windows.

Getting sassy on Kristin's birthday (also, crazy cat lady dress. +10)

saying good bye to Daron before she moved. Also, stealing her chair.

tailgating at the Lake Party 2013

my favorite jelly cat

terrorizing my friends

them terrorizing me

80's party, the champagne of parties

Miami Vice and a make shift fanny pack

basement parties


brown butter spaghetti--try it. So gooooood.

hey girl...

new Dino plush on afore mentioned daily made bed
 Happy August!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Sorry about the lack of DC Metro--you can blame my family

Recently, my dad brought to my attention a familial fun fact: turns out we're related to an agent of change in American culture and infrastructure.  

Have I introduced you to my grandpa's cousin, Francis C. Turner?

he even looks like my dad. The nose/eyes/ears run strong in the Turners.

Career Highlights:
  • 1943: he headed up construction of  the Alaska Highway, a 1,523-mile gravel road between Dawson Creek, British Columbia and Fairbanks, Alaska, to support military forces in Alaska during World War II. 
  • 1946: he went to the Philippines, where he helped restore bridges and roads damaged in the war. In 1950, he became an assistant to the bureau commissioner, Thomas MacDonald, who made him coordinator for the Inter-American Highway. 
  • In 1954, he was personally appointed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower to be executive secretary to the President's Advisory Committee on a National Highway Program. 
  • 1957 to 1967: served as Deputy Commissioner and Chief Engineer for Public Roads
  • 1967: the U.S. Senate confirmed his appointment as Director of Public Roads. 
  • 1969, the U.S. Senate confirmed him as the Federal Highway Administrator. He served in this position until his retirement on June 30, 1972. 
  • 1969: named World Highway Man of the Year by the International Road Federation 
  • 1994: named one of 10 relatively unknown people who changed the world in the previous 40 years by American Heritage magazine.
  • 1999: became the first recipient of the Frank Turner Medal for Lifetime Achievement in Transportation

Francis Turner was essentially the country's badass authority on highway design, finance, and construction, and even though Dwight Eisenhower gets all the credit, he was the baby daddy of the modern day American Interstate System, aka I-95, I-395, et al. 

So yeah, pretty illustrious. 

Francis Turner, looking remarkably like my dad, speaking at the building named for him


My cousin 4th removed also was a big opponent of the DC metro system. He had a hard-on for highways, and busted his balls in committees and working with different agencies to make sure they remained toll-free and HOV-friendly. Even though he was an engineer, he was possibly the one Turner male who didn't love trains. But, while Bigger cities were developing efficient, massive subway systems, Francis Turner remained insistent that DC be based on a highway system. He believed our interstate systems would be able to handle it. He believed that a bus could be driven anywhere, whereas a train was limited to just tracks. He's often criticized as being a man of great--albeit--limited vision.

fun to note: Nixon is quote here calling the DC metro "bullshit!"

So, when you're sitting in your mid-morning, late morning, early afternoon, late afternoon, early evening, mid-evening, late evening commute, wishing you could just take a subway; or when you're walking block after block in DC, or spending $40 on parking, wishing that you could have just taken a train, you can sneer and shake your fist at my family tree. (And at President Nixon.)

Proof that great mathematics and engineering genes run in my family. Also, the "nope, that doesn't sound like my problem" gene. 

You can clearly see which genetic trait was passed on to me. 

Also, is it me, or is "World Highway Man of the Year" a pretty badass award? Sheeeit.
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