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

Jul
31
2007

In Case Of Emergency, Video Of Boyfriend May Double As Sleeping Pill

Something you probably don't know about Sean is that he's a bit of a drill sergeant. Not normally, not on everything. But when it comes to me updating my blog, he suddenly turns into one of those pushy stage mothers who enter their three year old daughters in beauty pageants and then say things like "you need more mascara, Coral Lynn! And when you pirouette next time, do it with feeling!" Seriously, that guy is all up in my grill about posting when I haven't posted in a few days, all "write a blog post! write a blog post!

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Aug
09
2007

Curiouser And Curiouser: A Possible Ghost Story

When we first moved to Charleston, which was at the very beginning of 2003, we moved into the ground floor of a large grey house downtown, a house with a wrought-iron gate that made up for the fact that the kitchen was essentially just a countertop and an oven in the living room, and that the only electrical sockets in the whole apartment were, bizarrely, halfway up the wall.

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Mar
16
2008

Cover Girl Lipslick in "Daring"

Lipslick.jpg

When I was about 18, my lips suddenly started getting really chapped once in a while. And, you know, that kind of sucked and all, but what didn't suck was the color they'd go when they were chapped: it was the most perfect shade of pinky-red, like I was wearing the world's most natural-looking lipgloss. And so I almost started hoping for them to get chapped, because for two weeks I'd have some seriously awesome-looking lips, but without, you know, the hassle of reapplying lipgloss every few hours.

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Mar
01
2010

I Am Trying To Ruin Your Diet

I went down to see my parents in San Diego last weekend, where I did what I always do when I'm down there: shop with my mother, watch HGTV with my father, and eat as much food as is humanly possible. For some people, a week in Maui is what it takes to push the re-set button. For me, it's a weekend at home.

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Sep
05
2010

And Here's To Many More

Today is our first wedding anniversary! This time last year, I was sitting on the living room floor in my parents' house, making my bouquet. Right now I'm sitting in bed, drinking a mimosa and eating a pain au chocolat. It seems insane that a year has gone by, not least because I still haven't made a wedding album, had my dress cleaned (whoops!), framed that rather kind note from our close buddies the Obamas, or done anything with the postcards we had people fill out for our guest book.

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Mar
15
2007

Extremely Shallow Film Reviews, Part One: Stranger Than Fiction, Starring Will Ferrell

So the movie was fairly enjoyable, providing you were willing to suspend disbelief entirely, overlook several large plot flaws and loopholes, and admit to yourself that you were basically watching the poor man's Adaptation combined with the Cliff's Notes to Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, but what I really loved about Stranger Than Fiction---aside from the fact that it landed in my mailbox with minimum effort on my part, thanks to whichever handsome geek invented Netflix---was Maggie Gyllenhaal's hair.

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Jun
07
2006

This Is Pretty Perfect

On my last weekend in London, we decided we were going to have an adventure. We dubbed the day we'd have it Adventure Sunday and we talked about Adventure Sunday all week. In the end, it was decided that we'd have too much to do on Adventure Sunday to squeeze it all into one day, so we took a vote and came to the decision that we'd need to instigate Adventure Monday as well. Monday, as the fates would have it, was a public holiday, so that worked out pretty nicely. We don't have Memorial Day in England, but thank goodness for Whitsun, eh?

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