Feb
05
2014

Sleeping In Seattle

 

Hello from Seattle, where it is currently really, really, really cold. No, I mean really cold. Like, think of the coldest thing you can think of right now—a milkshake with ice cubes in it, the Arctic tundra, Paris Hilton's heart—and multiply that by a hundred and four, and that is how cold it is here. I just walked seven blocks back from my office and by the time I pushed open the doors of the hotel lobby, I couldn't feel most of my extremities, and I was wearing gloves, a hat, and a coat that kept me pretty toasty in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. In November. I mean, come on. 

On the upside, here is the view from my office, which could not possibly be more beautifully Seattle-ish.

Okay, wait, maybe it could be a tiny bit more beautifully Seattle-ish, but only if it had Frasier Crane somewhere in the left hand of the frame. Holding a cup of coffee. Next to McDreamy. 

(Is McDreamy still a thing? Do people still watch Grey's Anatomy? I remember the last time I visited Seattle, I was obsessed with the show and kept thinking I saw Meredith everywhere, but I must confess that I stopped watching several years ago and now I have no idea what the residents of Seattle Grace are up to anymore. Although presumably the same five people are still getting together and breaking up in various combinations.)

As well as not realizing that it was going to be this cold in Seattle—I mean, it's not like I have a weather app on my phone or anything; it's not like I could have looked it up (I could have looked it up)—I also did not realize that I was going to be arriving in the city on the day of a major parade. Why was there a major parade in Seattle today? Well, if you just asked yourself that question, you're in good company, because I did not know either. This is because the parade was to celebrate the winning of the Superbowl, but because the Superbowl is a sporting event and my brain shuts off at the phrase "sporting event" somewhere around "spor—", I kind of didn't really pay it any attention until the hotel check-in person said "wow, lot of people out there for the parade, huh?" and I said "oh, there's a parade today? For what?" and then I was actually asked to leave the United States of America immediately for unpatriotic conduct and also my husband texted me and asked for a divorce. 

(Whatever. Talk to me when there's a parade for the Oscars. Oh wait, there is! It's Live From the Red Carpet on E! and I have the time and date of it written down in my planner. Look, I'm sorry, we all have our passions. Yours might be football but mine is marveling at what a good job that boob tape is doing at holding everything in.) 

I am going to finish this now because I have one-quarter of The Goldfinch left to read—I have been dragging it out for an entire month because I never want to not be reading it—and also a pack of Skittles to get through. In bed. In this quiet room. Bolstered by the magnificent knowledge that when I turn off the light and drift into sleep tonight, no-one is going to wake me up three hours later and demand to eat. Small pleasures, friends. You can't even imagine. 

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Jan
13
2014

And In The End We All Survived

First of all, thank you so, so, so much for all your kind and compassionate and encouraging comments about my return to work. I read them over and over, and they helped me so much to feel better about it all. I worked from home last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday—the equivalent of inching body-part-by-body-part into the swimming pool, as opposed to just cannonballing in from the diving board; highly recommended if you can swing it—and then today I actually went back to the office for real.

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Jan
06
2014

These Days Are Numbered

I go back to work on Wednesday. Even writing that sentence, my heart simultaneously plummeted and soared, like when you get on an elevator that you think is going down but then the doors close and it starts going up. 

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Dec
31
2013

A Lot Of Words About 2013

Oh hey, remember me? Here I am on the very last day of 2013, squeezing in one last blog post so I can say that I updated eight times since mid-July instead of seven. I mean, I don't know who I think I'd be saying this to—the imaginary blogging police, I can only assume, who presumably monitor this kind of thing?but anyway, there you go.

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Nov
17
2013

I Wrote This Entire Thing Without Taking A Breath Can You Tell

Thank you, thank you, thank you for all your wise and helpful comments on my last post. You know, sometimes I feel like I just can't be bothered with blogging anymore—all the sponsored this, Pinterest-fodder that—and I think "eh, I'll just show myself out quietly, there's nothing in this for me anymore," and then you, all you wonderful people, weigh in on a subject with your thoughts and your advice and your experiences and I realize that what I've always valued most of all about writing online

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Nov
11
2013

Party At My Crib

Look, let me just tell you once and for all that when it comes to babies and sleep, things are every bit as terrible as you would imagine. As in, once you have one, you probably won't be getting very much of it at all. 

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Nov
04
2013

There Is No Narrative Construct To This Blog Post But I Hit Publish So I'm Calling It A Victory

Hello! I just got back from a week in a cabin in Northern Michigan—actually, I kept calling it a cabin but it was really just a condo decorated very rusticly and located in a woodsy setting—with a small portion of my family. My parents got lots of grandkid time, my kid got lots of grandparent time, and I got lots of "sleeping til 10am because someone else is looking after the baby" time, so basically it was a win-win for all. 

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Oct
03
2013

You Are Doing Just Fine

One of the things that has surprised me so much about having a baby—and there is so much that does surprise you; leaves you reeling, in fact—is that almost everyone I've spoken to in the last eleven weeks since Hugo was born has asked me how I'm doing. How I'm doing. Once we've ascertained that the baby is thriving and well and sleeping just enough that Sean and I aren't contemplating driving him back to the hospital and asking about their return policy, their attention is turned to me.

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Aug
26
2013

Parents Of Twins, I Salute You

So having a baby is a little time-consuming, turns out. I know! Who'd have guessed! Despite the fact that Hugo has proven, so far, to have inherited his father's mellow, easygoing temperament—as opposed to his mother's, ahem, less mellow, less easygoing one—the basic job of keeping a tiny human being fed, happy, and not rolling around in his own poop all day has been surprisingly all-encompassing.

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Random Flashbacks

Jan
31
2009

Banff Day Two: Of Elk And Bison And Long-Awaited Poutine

I'm going to give you some advice about coming to Banff. Here's the first piece: don't miss out on skiing at Lake Louise, because the views from the top of the mountain are spectacular. Here's the second piece: always bring a pair of very comfortable sweatpants in your luggage. Why would you bring a pair of very comfortable sweatpants in your luggage, you ask?

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Jul
11
2006

Taxicab Confessions

My brother Luke, who usually knows about these kinds of things, taught me that it's polite to call the taxi drivers in Singapore "uncle." And since taxis are cheap here, and we therefore use them rather a lot, I've suddenly found myself with a whole bunch of uncles, which, if I were into geneology and all that, would really be kind of a bitch when it came to drawing my family tree. "Hello uncle!" I'll say, clambering across the plastic-covered seat, nearly knocking myself in the head with the air freshener dangling from the ceiling.

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Feb
23
2007

Why They'll Have To Pry My Cold, Dead Body From The Building

I wanted to tell you all about how much I'm loving my new job, how the people are so great, how it's just so much fun to have structure (and office supplies) in my life again, but I find that all my other thoughts are eclipsed by the fact that today is, apparently, Bagel Friday. Do you know what Bagel Friday is?

BAGELS COME TO THE OFFICE ON FRIDAY. FOR EVERYONE. EVERY SINGLE WEEK.

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Sep
16
2006

Thy Kingdom Come

DSC00172When I was in Beijing, I tried to visit Chairman Mao, but pink flip-flops don't go down so well with dead communist leaders, apparently, and I wasn't allowed inside the mausoleum in case he accidentally caught a glimpse of my naked toes. In Hanoi, I filed past the security guards outside Ho Chi Minh's tomb, discreetly tugging my dress down past my knees in the hopes that it would be long enough to pass muster.

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Dec
17
2008

SimplyNoise.com

simply-noise-white1.png

As far as I can tell, there are two types of people in the world: those who can listen to music while they work and those who can't. I am firmly in the latter camp, unable to think if someone is even contemplating humming under their breath and preferring complete and utter silence wherever possible. 

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Sep
21
2011

How To Marry A Guy In 16 Days

This morning I got an email from a woman named Cate. She was slighty panicked—though in the good, excited, happy kind of way—because four days ago, she and her boyfriend had decided to get married. But why would she panic?, you ask. Is she secretly afraid that her soon-to-be-husband is suddenly going to start recieving Allure magazine every month in the mail for no discernible reason?

(NOT THAT THIS HAPPENED TO ANYONE YOU KNOW, COUGH SEAN SLINSKY COUGH.)

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May
08
2008

Calling All Internationals

Hi! Are you from a country that isn't America, but also isn't England, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, or pretty much any other country where English is the first language? If so, do you live in America (or Canada)? Do you have a blog? Could you please email me if you meet all of these criteria?

I promise it's not as mysterious as it sounds. I mean, I'm not, like, going to ask to see your Green Card or anything; I just need to ask you something. All will be revealed, I promise. Leave the briefcase on the bench. The red bird flies at midnight.

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