Archive | January, 2013


I love the internet.

I suppose that’s not the most revelatory statement I’ve ever made. It’s probably up there with “I like cupcakes” and ” OMG TRAVEL IS NEAT-O.”

But cupcakes existed long before I did, and travel has been around since the day that a caveman went for a long walk and thought, “Grog grunga tok.” Which, in this little vignette I’ve created, roughly translates to: “OMG TRAVEL IS NEAT-O.”

But the internet? It hasn’t been around all that long. I clearly remember a time before it. I won’t call it the Dark Ages, mostly because that phrase is already used to describe the cultural and economic deterioration that supposedly occurred in Europe following the decline of the Roman Empire (source: THE INTERNET!) But things before its existence were indeed less enlightened than they are now.


Once again, I wax poetic about baked goods.


Do you ever have moments of extreme clarity?

I’m not referring to those times when the skies above you are cloud free, or when your skin is looking absent of blemishes, almost to the point of vulnerability. No. I live in Seattle, and I eat lots of cake. My clarity does not manifest itself in those terms. (more…)

It is so bright in my office (what is this thing that’s happening right now? Sun … shine? I think that’s what it’s called) that I’m actually squinting. SQUINTING. In Seattle. In January.

I need to get outside immediately and soak up some Vitamin D. But before I run off, I wanted to share this week’s links with you. Enjoy.


I have the biggest girl crush on artist Kate Beaton. Her comics are delightful (and I’m pretty sure I’ve given them a shout-out on the blog before). Where else can you find mermaids brushing up on their Michael Jackson?


A former TSA screener answers the question on the mind of many frequent fliers: how do TSA agents feel working for an agency that is so despised?



I’m a bit of an organizational freak.

Some of you, especially those who have spent any amount of time on my blog, may find that hard to believe. I seem to flit from one location to the next, and the narrative of my travels soon becomes convoluted. I dart around like a homing pigeon with an ear infection. And also amnesia.

I’ve actually had people email me asking where the heck I was, because the posts on the blog had bounced around too many times for them to make sense of it.

Can you believe that? People asking me where I am! I mean, how the heck would I know?


Our lunch at Queen of Tarts. Notice the conspicuous absence of actual tarts.


After my brain surgery, I had trouble accepting that I was unchanged.

“Do I seem different?” I would ask Rand, time and again.

“No,” he’d reply. “Baby, you are exactly the same.”

And I’d stare at my reflection in the mirror, at my steroid-induced moonface, and say, “But I look different.”

“It’s not how you look,” he’d remind me. “It’s what’s on the inside that counts.”



The entrance to Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin.


I was talking recently with some friends, and they were telling me about a new phenomenon in the processing of coffee beans. The fad involved coffee cherries that are passed through the digestive track of a civet cat (mammals native to the islands of Java and Sumatra). The cats can’t process the beans themselves, so those are excreted whole, and then gathered by coffee connoisseurs, who claim that the fermentation process that occurred inside the animals digestive track makes the beans taste better. The result, they maintain, is a superior cup of coffee.

In short, people are using coffee beans that cats have pooped out.

If you are anything like me, hearing this news on an early and crisp January morning is more than enough to cause you to bid adieu to mankind as a whole, return your bed, and weep for the future of our species. Because, and I can’t believe I really need to say this, WE SHOULD NOT BE INGESTING THINGS WE FIND IN CAT POOP.

It also makes me wonder if maybe we’ve all gone a little bit soft. If, for many of us, life has gotten just a little too good, a little too easy, that we can devote our time to such excesses.

For those of us living in a world of pooped-out coffee, My Super Sweet 16, and vajazzling (if you are at work, do yourself a huge favor and DO NOT CLICK ON THAT LINK), I feel like reality checks are necessary every now and then.

My most recent one came courtesy of Kilmainham Jail (or Gaol, as we often saw it spelled), in Dublin.




I was recently talking to someone close to me about marriage.

She told me about Buddhism, and her husband, and their shared views on infidelity – and how the damage it does is like throwing a stone in a pond. The stone causes a splash on impact, but it also causes ripples to form, which extend outward, eventually touching every aspect of your life.

In short, if you want a happy life, and a happy marriage, don’t cause ripples in your pond.

I really liked the analogy. Seriously, can you think of a more poetic way of saying “don’t go around banging random peeps”?

And with that in mind, I would like to start 2013 with a confession of sorts.

Oh, relax. It’s not that interesting.