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Public Bar, Personal Space

Shelf Space Cartoons Bar

Public Bar in Dupont quickly became one of my favorite spots a few weeks ago. Rooftop bar, great music, and decent drink prices solidified it as a go-to haunt for my girlfriends and me.  So it was no surprise when after dinner at Raku on Saturday, we settled on heading there – just Boots and me.

On our last evening there, Boots, J-mint and I received a lesson from a couple guys who came up to talk to us. They informed us that a group of 3 women is extremely intimidating for a guy and his wingman to approach. 2 is perfect, 4 is okay, but 3 is impossible. Truthfully, this didn’t make much sense to me, but I guess it’s that one “extra” person that overwhelms the pursuer. Perhaps one guy feels weird having to hold a potential conversation with 2 girls. I would think this would be less of a pressure situation because the awkward pause factor diminishes when there are more people to talk to – but on the flip side, when there IS an awkward pause…it’s probably super uncomfortable with 3 people looking around and into their drinks searching for the next thing to say when compared to 2. With 2, you can just start making out and that takes away the tension (hopefully) – am I right? Yes? No? Maybe?

It was an interesting lesson to think about and one both Boots and I remembered as the pair of us headed toward Public bar. We knew it was going to be a top night.

So we grabbed a beer, scoped out the scene, gossiped, listened to music – a great start to a summer evening in DC – we didn’t see anyone in our first perusal who piqued our interest so we just continued to hang out and people-watch. Then Boots spotted a relatively cute guy (Scruffy) laughing with some friends. I told her I’d play wing-gal if she wanted to chat him up…but she played the “shy” card and we watched as he sat down next to some girl and began talking with her.

“Ugh – I guess I missed my chance – I should have said something!” Boots lamented.

“Yo – maybe she’ll puke and then you can swoop in for clean-up…” I said.

We continued to watch Scruffy and Girl banter…when suddenly Girl bolted up. I leaned into Boots, “what just happened?”

“I don’t know…” As Boots and I stared (openly gawking now), Girl turned around, and splayed across her back were chunks of purple vomit (we’ll go with red wine as the culprit). The Puker hung over the back of the bench Girl had just vacated. Scruffy looked a little green.  A crowd stared on as she puked again down the bench. Girl, rightfully pissed, escaped that spray of projectile mastery and headed toward the bathroom/home/a large hole…

Boots and I couldn’t believe it.

“Well – that’s gonna be quite a conversation starter for the rest of the night – hey…did you see the chick that got puked on?” We shook our heads with Scruffy, in disbelief that what had just happened had just happened.

“Did you get any on you?” I asked him.

“Thank God – no – I have a really weak stomach. If it had touched me, I would have puked on you, you would have puked on her (he pointed at Boots)…”

“Yeah it would be like a domino chain of projectile vomit,” I laughed.

We talked a bit longer then Scruffy moseyed back to his friends as Boots and I tapped off our latest beer and continued our night.

The next day, I shared this story as the highlight of our evening with Sis and Co. I still couldn’t believe it, and was more than grateful it wasn’t my back that became a Rorschach painting. We wondered how Girl coped – I’d have gone straight home in an effort to get clean. And apparently we weren’t the only ones that thought about Girl…

Boots emailed me last night: Subject Line: OMG!!!! with a link in the body of the email:

http://washingtondc.craigslist.org/doc/mis/1243969202.html

I clicked on it as you should do, but for those of you who are lazy…here’s where it takes you/what it said:

Washington DC Craig’s List/District of Columbia/Missed Connections

Girl that got puked on at Public – m4w – 26 (DC)

Reply to: pers-usqwn-1243969202@craigslist.org
Date: 2009-06-28, 3:13PM EDT

We were talking for a bit and having a good time, then out of nowhere, some drunk bitch projectile vomited on us (98% on you). You took off to the bathroom while I tried to coax my weak stomach into not throwing up myself. I didn’t see you again after that, probably for good reason.

The throw-up brought them even closer together. And just think…if they hadn’t been sitting there, and she hadn’t been puked all over, it may have ended like most Saturday bar nights – with a bar-make-out session, perhaps worthy of on-lookers before going their separate ways. As it is, apparently it was love and how they met will definitely make a great story for their grand-kids.

**Picture courtesy of ShelfSpaceCartoons.com

Wednesday sucked. It consisted of a torrential downpour, my contact disintegrating in my eye forcing me to wear my glasses, and hitting a parked car.

The last in that small litany was my first accident ever, and while I was only traveling at a mere 3.2 mi./hour, I still managed to inflict enough damage to warrant me sticking around, talking to the owner, exchanging pertinent information, and naturally crying. Because that’s how I handle stressful situations apparently. I blubber like an idiot for 10 minutes, call Sis, Mom or Dad who tell me to stop – that it’s not the end of the world (even though clearly it is) – and finally pull myself together enough to move on – sort of. See, I tend to be slightly melodramatic sometimes.

Example: Whenever I see a cop car, I blanch and have to swallow the golf ball that lodges in my esophagus. It’s an involuntary reaction whose origins trace to the pit of my stomach, kind of like that first second of a roller coaster’s drop – where if you’re going to puke, that would be the time it happens. This reaction bubbles up every time I see a cop on the road – whether I’m passenger or driver – when this occurs in our carpool moments, BinLaw (who obviously is always the driver…obviously) thinks I’m crazy. “It’s not like you have a stash of drugs in your hand KT. You’re not doing anything wrong. Relax,” he says. But it doesn’t matter – without fail, I feel like a criminal and my physical reaction/appearance adjust to reflect this.

But I digress…so Wednesday night, I leave the gym, running a little late to get my hair cut. I’m parked next to a huge yellow handicap van that takes up most of its space and part of mine. Because I’m in my glasses, it’s humid, and I’m sweaty, they fog up, but I clean them off as I prepare to reverse – hoping I don’t side-swipe the van in the process. I take off my emergency brake, drift back, give a little gas – and CRACK…my bumper crunches into the passenger side door of the illegally parked car behind me. Though it doesn’t matter that she was illegally parked because as my insurance agent informed me, “If a child is jay-walking and you hit the child, it doesn’t matter that if they hadn’t been walking illegally you wouldn’t have hit them – you still hit them and thus it’s your fault.” A simple “no,” would have sufficed considering my only question was, “does it matter she was parked illegally?”

So now, my idiocy will cost my bank account a cool $800.

And yes that sinking lodged golf ball feeling has taken up permanent residence in the back of my throat. Even though this “apparently” happens to “everyone” and it’s just a “life lesson” from which I “have to learn.” Blerg.

Fun Fact Friday

…also known as It’s National DONUT Day!

donuts1

Today, I walked into the office to the oh-so-sweet and tantalizing aroma of donuts. The scrumptious, mouth-watering scent tickled my nose, a long feather carried by a tempting devil. Not so hot for someone who’s perpetually on a diet…but everyone deserves a treat once and awhile…and it IS a National holiday, so who would I be NOT to indulge…unpatriotic, not-a-team-player, a Debbie-Downer? Thus, naturally I had to partake as should you.

Both the King of Donuts – Dunkin’ and Krispy Kreme are giving out one free donut to honor this day, so get out there and embrace this holiday with the same fervor as you celebrate Columbus Day, Thanksgiving, and National Belly Laugh Day (January 24th)!

Be one with the donut. Seize the donut. Mmmmm the donut.

simpsons_donuts-l

Just Do It.

Nike has a new ad campaign that’s pretty kick a**.  I caught them posted on FB and thought they were pretty cool. Actually I think anything that tells me it’s okay to have “thunder thighs” is awesome…a “muffin top” is a different story though. Since it’s kind of hard to read the phrases, I typed them out…my favorite, “those who might scorn it are invited to kiss it.” 

Thunder Thighs

nike thighs

I have Thunder Thighs and that’s a compliment because they are strong and toned and muscular and though they are unwelcome in the petite section, they are cheered on in marathons. Fifty years from now I’ll bounce a grandchild on my thunder thighs and then I’ll go out for a run.

Chicken Legs

nike legs

My legs were once two hairy sticks that weren’t very good at jump rope but by the time I reached the age of algebra, they had come into their own and now in spin class, they are revered, envied for their strength, honored for their beauty, hairless for the most part, except that place the razor misses just behind the ankles.

Scabby Knees

nike knees

My knees are tomboys. They get bruised and cut every time I play soccer. I’m proud of them and wear my dresses short. My mother worries I will never marry with knees like that. But I know there’s someone out there who will say to me “I love you and I love your knees.” I want the four of us to grow old together.

Hips Don’t Lie

nike hips 

My hips return to puberty when I’m in dance class. Music affects them like hormones making them crazy and spontaneous and optimistic and prone to drama and I don’t understand them and sometimes they don’t understand themselves. When the music stops they’re still charged. Don’t touch me. Sparks will fly.

 I Like Big Butts

 nike butt

My butt is big and round like the letter C and ten thousand lunges have made it rounder but not smaller and that’s just fine. It’s a space heater for my side of the bed. It’s my ambassador to those who walk behind me. It’s a border collie that herds skinny women away from the best deals at clothing sales. My butt is big and that’s just fine and those who might scorn it are invited to kiss it.

SWOOSH. Well done Nike.

Mamma Said

I can’t quite remember the first time I realized that my mom knew her stuff, but I do remember the phrase she used to show me. It’s one that has guided me through crushes, friendships, and disappointments – one that’s taught me that there’s only so much I can control before it (whatever it is) travels out of my hands.

“People do what they want to do…”

And you can’t control or change it, no matter how much you might pull your hair out trying. This simple sentence has over the years become a mantra for me to get through and deal with the people who frustrate, annoy, hurt and let me down – mainly because it’s true. 

People will say things a thousand different ways – to please you, to avoid confrontation, because it’s what they think you want to hear – but in the end, they’ll do exactly what they want to do regardless of its impact on you. It’s hard for some people to accept it (they’ll rationalize or make excuses for that person) and in the end, they’ll waste so much time and energy on someone who doesn’t really think of them much at all.

My mom told me this was a phrase Nana (not sure of how I’m actually related to her) used to say – an “ism” she’d spout off, one that made a lot of sense to Mom so that when I came to her crying about that boy in chem. class junior year or how my “best friend” started those rumors about that girl, it was the first thing that came to her mind.

“People do what they want to do, KT…and sometimes it sucks, sometimes it’s not at all what you want them to do, but more often than not, it’ll all work out and it’ll be for the better.”

So far she’s been right. So, thanks Mom. You do know your s**t.

Empty Plate

So – yes I realize I’ve been extremely MIA lately – and getting worse! For that, I’m sorry and WILL make a better attempt to find something (or anything!) to say, especially since I realized that TODAY, yes today, is the ONE YEAR mark for me starting this blog – and wow has a lot happened in a year.

cupcake2

That is my happy birthday, and by birthday I clearly mean blogday, cupcake to me.

A lot can change in a year – hell, a lot can change in a day – and my philosophy is to roll with the punches, and throw a few of my own into the mix. That’s not always easy. As someone who since childhood has consistently maintained a vehement loathing for change, over the years, I have found myself time and again thrown something that causes me to react…and ultimately change.

At the dinner table when I was a kid and naturally didn’t want to eat something that looked vile and disgusting, my mom always told me about the “Learn to Like It Club.” As a product of the ’40’s/50’s, she’s a woman who grew up around evening radio broadcasts. One show that came on around dinnertime featured this “Learn to Like It” segment as wells the “Empty Plate Clubber’s” bit. Parents would call in and share if their little angel had successfully kept down the broccoli they swore they would throw up if forced to eat. “Learn To Like It” had a similar purpose – if a kid found that they actually enjoyed grapefruit, Mom or Dad would call in Cleaver-style and report this to all the listeners. How 1950’s.

Mom used a similar tactic with me, even though the show had been on static for 30+ years. That mind-set of “maybe you’ll just learn to like it” spilled over from my plate into my real life. And I actually think this is how I’ve adjusted to those big changes – each time I’ve packed a suitcase – thought about a job switch – toyed another move, I’ve done it solely because I had to learn to like the taste of change. And I think I have (sort- of)…

So here I am, one year later from that first post about moving to the Big City. And who knows where this next year will take me – perhaps in a year, I’ll find myself back up there, but I do promise to keep documenting it – because I know that even as I write this, my tastes are changing and that’s not necessarily a bad thing anymore.

Fail Safe

“So today, KT, we’re going to work to failure…”

Failure. Shit.

I stared down my trainer with definite wariness.

He’s a fifty-something black former Navy Seal who cuts to the quick both verbally and when he’s piling weight on one of the machines he has me using. His name is Vince.

I’ve never been an athlete. Never even really played a sport (except youth soccer and softball – where teams were made of various colors like Teal and Gold) or tried to hone my skills in a non-organized pastime (i.e. skiing or golf). I never had the stamina or the coordination to even try-out…except 8th grade volleyball, but that ended badly and I’m still bitter.

What I have learned to do to exercise and stay healthy is workout…I enjoy going to the gym and through that, I’ve come to appreciate the dedication that goes into manipulating your body to work towards a specific goal regardless of endzone or finish line.

I’m pretty religious about exercise and it’s for purely selfish reasons. If I’ve had a crap day where nothing seemed to click in place, I’ll go to the gym and pound my frustration into a treadmill and feel better. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. It’s a sense of intense satisfaction when I’ve finished a good workout.

The gym where I’m currently a member offers free training for your first month and then once a month after that. I signed up for a session with Vince and knew we’d hit it off when after shaking hands he said, “ready to cry?” then swatted my shoulder with a, “let’s get to work.”

We train…to failure. Arms. Legs. Back. Shoulders. He has me lift until I am physically incapable of raising my arm again. I’m standing there staring at it and it’s absolutely, completely refusing to move. Then he says, “do one more.”

And I do. And the day I told him I was a Redskins fan, he doubled the weight, adding five extra reps – he’s not a fan of that football franchise.

“OK, we’re done here.” Vince makes a note on my chart and I hobble behind him to the next machine to repeat.

At the end of an hour, my muscles are shaking with exertion. But I feel good. And I find myself fascinated with the fact that he says this is working to failure because failure to me means not accomplishing something, not seeing it through, a cacophony of negative. Yet he sees these failures as measures of success, as an opportunity to learn and grow and build – to eventually reach a tangible goal of fitness.

I’d love to be able to apply this thinking to life where failure actually becomes a means for creation, but I have a feeling that in most cases if a person (me included) hits failure more often than not, they’ll be unwilling to ever try again. Somehow, I’d like to get out of that mindset – and in ways, I think I am.

Vince pushes my muscles to failure and I come back the next week ready to do it all again. I look forward to working beyond what I think I can do to what I actually am capable of completing. So each week I work to this end. I add more weight, do more repetitions until finally I hit failure again.

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