Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Dear Crabby

Well, Happy Hour went longer than anticipated because two of my friends (KELLY AND FREDA) didn't sign up for our Fantasy Football draft in time, so that just never happened. Who knew ESPN would be so strict with their rules?! Anyhoozle, I had a lovely Happy Hour with Lana and Valerie, and then I made them come back to my pad to check out the dresses I had ordered online. Spoiler Alert: Neither worked. I over-estimated my measurements, and I was stuck with a saggy - albeit beautiful - Calvin Klein dress that no one was into. Whatevs. Let's get some Dear Crabby out of the way so I can help some peeps.

Dear Crabby,

I am thinking about deactivating my Facebook page. Thoughts? Why should/shouldn't I? Thanks, buddy ol' pal. BTW: It's separate, but significant, but I found out my very very ex-boyfriend was engaged recently on FB. All I know is that I could have done without that information.

Comment on My Status

Dear Comment on My Status,

You are most certainly not alone in your desire to flee from the FB. There have been so many stories lately about people who just get too MUCH information (i.e. "just did my 7th Pilates class of the week!!!!") or too INTIMATE information (i.e. "Just got my tubes tied! Baby factory is OVER!") that they would otherwise not want to know. It's almost become the chain letter from the 90's. You feel like you SHOULD participate, but you don't want to because you really just don't care. What if 10 people don't "like" your status update in the next ten minutes? Will you never find True Love?! It's time's oldest question: Do I, or Don't I participate in Facebook? I mean, we all feel like we SHOULD check in on Facebook, but when it's dumb and mundane, what good does it do us? It's ANNOYING to hear about only fabu things happening to other people who you aren't even necessarily friends with. La la la, that girl you had Math with in High School had her 16th baby. Huzzah! Wait, WHO CARES?! It's bad for your self-esteem. Unless you get some sense of JOY from your Facebook (I personally love pics of my family, statuses that are hilarious), then close up shop. It's dumb. It's become a hive of business promotions and bragging rights. I say, check out, never look back, and set up a Twitter and Picasa account. Unless you rely on FB for your Social Calendar, you'll be golden, Pony Boy. I support you!!!

Dear Crabby,

My boyfriend and I CONSTANTLY fight about sleeping with the fan on. One night we'll keep it on, and he whines non-stop about being too cold. But when he turns it OFF, and the air is all stuffy and hot, I can't sleep! However, HE sleeps like a baby with a Nuk. Any suggestions on compromises?

Your Biggest FAN!

Dear Biggest FAN,

If he's such a man, he should buck up and be able to handle a nice, calming breeze. If he can't, buy him a bra and hopefully that will warm him up.

That's it guys. It's all I can take tonight. I'm too upset and violent about missing my first chance at being in a Fantasy Draft (NOTE TO EVERYONE: I'm pretty much the biggest Girl Football Fan ever...stop skipping over me, jerks!) so I'm going to sign off. If you've still got burning questions, feel free to email and I'll go ahead and solve allllllll your problems.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


A Love Letter

Oh, how I love thee. Let me count the ways:

You are awesome at shipping stuff to me. I ordered dresses today, and they will be delivered tomorrow, which is just tops. (Almost) No waiting! However, I am almost 100% certain they will look, um, not so good on me, so I also love that...

Your return shipping policy is second to none. It's hard to buy clothes online. There is no unflattering lightning, no judgmental salespeople, no promise of a 40% discount with the purchase of an ugly necklace. All we have with online purchasing is "Hey, that's cute! I want to have that!" And when your pre-teen models don't exactly showcase the goods, putting the dress on my own body is sometimes...disappointing. Therefore, the ability to return a dress with no judgement, no "Why didn't this work out for you? Did you check out our 2-for-1 leggings?", AND no charge? Yes please!

Now, despite your obsession with showcasing your staff of models, who are - for the most part - exactly the same size, I trust your judgement with it comes to how an item will fit. These Marc Jacobs shorts run a little small? Thanks for the head's up! I love me some insider information. I will suggest, however, that because approximately 9 out of 12 of your female models claim their size is "2 or 4", you expand your options. I want to see what this strapless dress looks like on a girl who has gone through puberty. Is that too much to ask? Also, you list the model's shoe size. Which unnecessary. It's like telling you that my IQ is about 234056. No one cares.

In that same vein, I did have to take my own hip measurements this morning because Zappos isn't exactly forthcoming with their sizing charts. Which was wholly depressing. On the one hand, thanks for giving me the hip measurements of your dress, Zappos, but all that means to me is a panicked tailor session for me. I wrapped a novelty tape measure around what I assumed were my hips. The numbers weren't adding up. So, then I had to google "how do I measure my hips" for a very thorough description of how to take ALLLLL my measurements. My assumptions at the beginning of the day were way off the reality that came up on the promotional tape measure. I went ahead and assumed that the measuring tool must be wrong, and my arbitrary measurements are right. I will assume the reality of the fit will greatly differ from the "reality" of math.

But, ordering clothes online is like Christmas. Tomorrow is Wednesday, and Wednesday's are dumb. BUT! When I get home from an inevitably long day at work tomorrow, I get prizes in the mail! Yay! People don't get anything in the mail anymore. Besides bills. Which are total downers. But dresses? Yes please!

So, Zappos, I love you. I understand our relationship is sometimes lacking, but you just know how to pick a girl up after a long, dumb day. And even if I don't love the dresses I get tomorrow, I still love YOU.

Oh online store by any any other name...

Monday, August 29, 2011

Fun With Finances!

Okay, ladies and gentlemen. It's time for the best show in the blogosphere! Put your hands together and get ready to play....Did! $he! $ave! Money!!!! Let's get started. Here are the rules.

I've got a list of activities I did today, in efforts to save money. I'll round off some numbers, because I am bad at estimating, and then you'll tell me...Did I Save Money?! Let's find out! Good luck!

Lunch Time
Forgot that I was supposed to go out with some co-workers for lunch this afternoon, and had too much work to do, so I ended up skipping lunch out in favor of a homemade lunch at my desk.
Cost of My Lunch: $2.98 Cost of Lunch Out: $15.00
Amount Saved: $12.02
(Additional Factors: I was still hungry after my dumb little lunch, so I got a snack. Actual Amount Saved: About $10.02.)

Afternoon Break
Tried to get some girlfriends to come out and get a pedicure with me. No one could come, and Kim helpfully pointed out that I am completely capable of doing my own nails, and I do them rather well. With the right tools.
Cost of Professional Pedicure: $33. Cost of My Pedicure: $10
Amount Saved: $23
(Additional Factors: Because I needed to get a few of the "right tools", I ran out to Target to get a few things. Ten dollars is what I spent on nail supplies. But $80 is the actual amount I ended up spending at Target, because no one ever in the history of time has ever walked out of Target with "only what they need". But I DID get a few things I really needed, so that was good. Actual Amount Saved on Pedicure: -$27)

Post-Work Travel
So, it was obvious that I needed to go to Target. The problem is that I still go to my OLD Target. As in "by my old house". Sorry, but it's the best Target ever. So instead of going less than 4 miles away to the Target by my new house, I drove to the other Target almost 8 miles away.
Cost of driving to Old Target: $4.64. Cost of bucking up and driving to the New Target: $2.32.
Amount Saved: -$2.32
(Additional Factors: I also blared the a.c. the whole way, and had my windows down. Based on what my Driver's Ed instructor told me oh so many years ago, Actual Amount Saved: -$12.32)

I had every intention of stopping to pick up dinner on my way home from the grocery store. I didn't have the energy to MAKE anything, despite having just been at the grocery store. WHATEVER. Anyway, I had intended to stop and pick up a sushi roll and a salad, but took the wrong way back home from Old Target. I never passed the sushi place, and nothing else sounded good, so I just came home.
Cost of Picking Up Dinner: $12.00 Cost of Dinner I Actually Ate Which Was a Sandwich and a peach: $1.37
Amount Saved: $10.63
(Additional Factors: It was a way healthier choice to eat at home. Actual Amount Saved: $10.63 and approx. 800 calories)

Evening Shopping Binge
Instead of dropping some cash on some plain ol' bed sheets at Target that I wasn't wild about, I decided I needed to save my money so I nixed the whole idea. Then I came home and Claire informed me she was running to IKEA tomorrow over lunch. She and I poked around online and I found a new duvet cover I wanted. I don't NEED a new duvet cover, but I need new sheets. But I figured that I'd get a new duvet cover and no one would be the wiser that it would be covering up a naked mattress.
Cost of sheets I didn't get at Target: $34.99. Cost of duvet cover that I don't need but will be getting anyways: $34.99.
Amount Saved: Total Wash
(Actual Amount Saved: Nothing, because I still need to get sheets.)

So, whaddya think? Did! $he! $ave! Money!? The answer, if you're going by the "math" is that um, no. I didn't save any money. Boo. But! When you get a little creative with the accounting, it would appear that I kind of "won" a new duvet cover and lots of cute manicure supplies, right? Yay! Everyone's a winner!!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Fitting a Pharon Square into a Round Peg

There comes a time in a gal's life, when you look around and think "things have changed." Maybe it's when you have a kid, or you're married, or your happily single with no drama. Whatever it is. It's kind of prolific.

Mine came this weekend, when I found myself dancing around a kitchen table in my friend's house at 10 p.m. on a Saturday night. Here's the long and short of it: I was invited to a surprise party for my friend Peter's fiancee Katie. While I love both Peter and Katie, Peter was first Geo's friend, and I know them by proxy, so I don't know too many of their "non Geo's friends" friends. So when I walked into the party, I knew not ONE PERSON. No familiar faces. Nada. Peter was distracting Katie elsewhere before her grand arrival, so I was on my own for awhile. I haven't been at a party where I don't know anyone in, well, a zillion years. So, there I was...a girl on my own. Trying to small talk my way through the jungle that is female strangers. It was, uh, rough. I threw around a few insults that were meant as jokes, and it was bumpy for awhile. I was waaaaay out of my element. I wanted to retreat to a corner and just text Geo about how weird it all was without him. Instead, I forced myself to get back out there and make some new friends.

Cut to: The dance party. After about 4 hours of mingling and forcing people to adapt to my sense of humor, a few people I knew showed up, and it was all good. I had been drinking Stella Artois all night, so I was feeling very mature, too - you know, because it wasn't like PBR or something. Others had been getting quite rowdy, and someone turned on some Journey and the dance party started in earnest. There were only a few of us at first. We looked like idiots, but it felt great.

I threw out some of my best Xbox Kinect Dance Central moves, and I'd like to think people were finally starting to come around to appreciating my unique additions to a party. This whole time, the 6 or so of us who were dancing, were actually dancing AROUND a kitchen table. It was weird. That's when I was like "This Where are the strobe lights? Shots? Loud gangsta rap, like in the good ol' days??" So we decided to move the table out of the way, and at least get a dance circle started. The rest of the party showed up to dance, instead of just staring at us, and it all just started to feel right.

But for that one minute when I was drinking responsibly, unfamiliar with all the rest of the party-goers, and had decided to just dance around a kitchen table, I felt so un-Pharony. Like a version of myself I would have made fun of when I was in college. But, it didn't last long, and eventually, I fell back into my old routine of being awesome. It was a little like I had grown up a little in that weird in-between time. No more was I the young, naive girl drinking rum and Coke's who was perpetually trying to fit in - no, I was the older, mature girl drinking non screw-top beer, trying to fit in. I guess some things never change.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Minnesota State Pharon

There are a number of reasons why I, a Minnesota-born and bred fabulous young woman, should love going to the Minnesota State Fair. Is there a better place in the world to see mullets and inappropriately short/tight/torn/crocheted clothes? I am certain there is not. And food? Word on the street is that I love food. And yet, despite all that glamour, I do not like the State Fair. I hear your cries now: "Blasphemy!" "Anarchy!" "Oh, the horrors!" "But Pharon, there's even FRIED BUTTER this year!" I know, I know you guys! The fried butter ALMOST got me pumped to go this year. But alas, I will do my best to avoid the whole mullet-y mess.

Not from Minnesota? Live under a rock? Okay, well, here's a brief account of what you're missing at the Minnesota State Fair. First of all, it's in St. Paul. Strike One. The traffic to get to the Fair blows. Cars full of screaming kids crawl along the highway, the rogue motorcycle gangs weave recklessly in and out of stopped traffic. It's terrifying. Once you get there, you park. And by "park" I mean "drive around for 45 minutes, pay some random resident $40 to park on his lawn for the day and then walk 6 miles back to the Fairgrounds". When you mercifully enter the gates, the stench of animal waste product punches you smack in the face. With eyes watering from holding down your breakfast, you try and find your way through the shoulder-to-sweaty-shoulder crowds. Helpful Hint: If you go with more than a few other people, one of you will get lost, and you'll have to meet up at the Fried Alligator booth. You'll try some really awesome food - mini donuts, french fries, sweet corn, cheese curds, milkshakes, deep-fried candy bars, Sweet Martha's famous chocolate chip cookies, funnel cakes, etc - and start to feel pretty good about the Fair.

Then you'll decide you're brave enough to go check out the Live Births. "Yay! Nature!" you'll think. Then you'll see a cow squirt out a gooey, disfigured baby, and return all that delicious food into the garbage cans. You might decide to slow things down a bit and check out the Horticulture building. Giant pumpkins, giant works of art created by using only seeds, heads carved out of butter (normal), educational posters. Suddenly, you're ready for a nap. But there's no time! You've got to get to the Midway!

Walking into the Midway is like walking into a homeless man's armpit. It's very smelly, and everything you touch is somehow both sticky and rusty. Are you up to date on your tetanus shots? I sure hope so! Anyway, the Midway is where all the rides and games are. You'll very quickly lose $30 trying to win a plush, dirty, Mickey Mouse. If you're "lucky", you'll win a prize, and have to lug the stupid thing around all day before eventually tossing that into the garbage can as well.

At some point, a very drunk woman in cut-off jean shorts, and a baggy tie-dyed tank top will come up to you, yelling, and ask if you have tried the pork chop on a stick yet. When you say you haven't, she gets very angry at you, and demand you go get it. Now. She'll go back to dancing in the middle of the street to the lovely vocal stylings of a Grateful Dead cover band.

By this point, you're probably ready to call it a day. Your feet hurt, your hands are still sticky despite having washed them like twenty times, and you've just about had it with all the sweating. But you've actually only been there for like an hour, so you'll feel pressured to stay because you paid nearly one month's rent to just park. Why don't you take a load off and sit down?

Where should you sit? Oh, okay, yup. Right there on the curb with everyone else. Don't worry about the gum you'll probably sit on. You're planning on burning the outfit you're wearing anyway.

After regrouping, you'll give eating another shot. The food at the Fair is THE BEST FOOD EVER. That part is true. I just hope you're okay with gaining a few (twenty) pounds, as everything is fried or slathered in butter. Just the way I like it. Anyway, the food is good. You'll drink milk at the milk booth, slide down the giant yellow slide on a piece of burlap, and maybe hang out next to one of the billions of radio shows recording live at the Fair. They engage the crowds, play fun music, and that's just really good. Maybe you'll win a t-shirt or bumper sticker. "Well this just isn't half bad!" you'll think. You're starting to forget about how dirty you are, and that stench of the barn has all but vanished. You think "I actually love this place!"

When you finally call it a day, though, it will take you 75 minutes to find your car because you can't remember where it is. Then it will be blocked in by other cars, and the residents/parking attendants will get very creative on how to move the cars around you. Turn on that a.c. as high as it goes to cool off, and you're off! For 3 blocks. Then you'll hit post-Fair traffic. One hundred hours later, you're home. When you open your wallet, though, you discover you've been robbed! Nope, you haven't, Silly Rabbit. You've just spent $150 on stupid games, food you couldn't keep down, and knick knacks you bought in a food-coma haze. You're poor. You're dirty. But you're full! And by next weekend, you'll have forgotten about all the grimy-ness of the Fair and get all mopey when it's over.

Well, I'm not falling for it this year. I'm keeping my money and waistline in tact this summer. You guys can go and have fun at the Fair. Just don't ask me to come along. I will humbly request, though, that you bring me back some Sweet Martha's cookies, mini donuts, and fried pickles. Oh, and I want to try the fried butter. And if it's not too much trouble, could you also get me a milkshake from the Dairy Barn? Oh, and don't forget the cheese curds! And maybe throw a Pronto Pup in there as well. I think that should do it. Aw man, do I love the Fair again??

Anyway, have a good weekend guys! Try and not get tetanus or food poisoning from the Fair if you go!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Dear Crabby

Well, I had two conversations tonight - one with my mom, another with my dad - wherein I said the phrase "Yes, you're right" more times than I care to admit. I believe that my ability to actually listen to my parents, and then agree with them means that I'm a full-fledged adult. Huzzah! But, I need to get back some of the control and know-it-all isms that I'm so used to. Therefore, awaaaaay we go with Dear Crabby!!

Dear Crabby,

So a girl friend of mine is about 8 years younger than I am. Well, she's about 8 years younger than EVERYONE in our group of friends. Recently, she's been taking all these jabs at us, because we are older than her. "I don't know who Jem and Holograms are, but that sounds lame". And once she asked us how we deal with our grey hair. Needless to say, her new-found attitude is not going over well with us. What do we do?!

Thanks, Crabby!
-Bold and Old

Hey Bold and Old,

First of all, this chick sounds lame. My first suggestion is to stop hanging out with her. She wants to make jokes about grey hair? Make jokes about the fact that she can't rent a car or become president or something. Also, you should probably let her know that just because she's young, doesn't make her cool. If that were the case, babies would be the coolest people on the planet. And they're not, because they can't even talk yet! My point is, maybe it's up to you to just realize that she's dumb and you should stop inviting her places because she can't appreciate how totally awesome you are. More importantly, you can rest assured that one day, that very lame, immature girl will wake up and realize she is, in fact, lame and immature. And it will have nothing to do with her age.

Dear Crabby,

GROSS. My friend is throwing her birthday party on the same night as me. We share a bunch of friends, too. Do I reschedule my party so that everyone can go to both? I really don't want to, because I've gotten a nice VIP room at this bar by my house, and I don't want to cancel it. What do I do?!

-Party Pooper

What up, Party Pooper!?

Is there ANYTHING worse than two parties in one night? Yes. There is. Genocide, poverty, war, etc. You catch my drift? Anyhoozle, here's what you do. As long as you can guarantee your party is better than the other one, KEEP THAT VIP ROOM. Bribe people, if you have to. If you're not so sure you can tempt people away from the other party? Quietly cancel yours ("Oh, they lost our reservations! RUDE, I know!") and then plan the best party anyone has ever dreamed of for the next weekend. Next year, there will be no choice. They'll pick you every time! If you DO reschedule your party, though, don't be a giant martyr about it. Go to the other one, be the life of the party, and have a good time. You won't regret your decision either way.

Dear Crabby,

My boyfriend and I are foster parents for dogs. We've had some good ones, some bad ones, and some really tragic ones. The puppy we just got today, though, takes the cake. She only has three legs! She is tiny and sweet and we love her. She has a terrible dog name right now: Billie, so we want to rename her, obvs. Any suggestions for a new name?

-Three Legs are Better Than Two


Names for a three-legged dog? Oh boy. Here we go: Tri, Tre, Trois, Pod, Company, Lucky, Legs, Menage, Pete, Poli, Trip, Crown, Athalon, Good Thing Happen In, Some. Um...that's all I can think of off the top of my head. Any of those working for you? If not, let me know and I'll come up with a FEW more. (Get it? Few? Three? HA!)

Well, I think I can safely say that I've solved all those problems. Have a question for me? Send in your questions to and I'll try my best to fix your life. Although, maybe I should have my mom or dad answer these. Turns out, they have all the answers! Mom? Dad? Whaddya think?

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Coming Home?

Major shocker at work today. I'm sitting there, la la la, totally #winning at everything, and then I get a text from my roommate Claire. "Wanna do Zumba tonight?" Uhhhh, color me shocked. Basically, she and her bf were supposed to be out of town until tomorrow, so I had been a little, uh, lax when it came to proper living habits. So immediately, I go into panic mode. See, the thing is...I lived like a frat boy all week. Since they left last week, I've been leaving breadcrumbs of clothes, glasses, shoes, and papers all over the place. When I learned they would be home TODAY, I had vivid images of dishes on the counters, lights left on all day, high heels strategically placed by doors in order to thwart any clumsy burglars...not exactly the most grown up way to leave a house. So yeah, I was feeling all sheepish.

So I say to Claire "Oh no! I thought you were coming home TOMORROW!" And she's all "No, we'll be back TODAY, duh. Why, what's wrong?" I felt like I was 16 years old and was about to get caught throwing a raging party. Instead, I'm akljdewehjtliuwfg years old and did NOT have a party. I simply just, uh, let myself go. I said "Claire, I left the house pretty messy." And she's all "Okaaaay...'cause I don't care." And I said "Yeah, but I left dishes out everwhere." And, God love her, she writes back,

"Well, then you better leave work early to go put those dishes away."

Of course she was joking, so I felt better.

I got home from work, and kind of tiptoed inside, before realizing "DUH. Everything is FINE". Claire and her bf have been such good friends of mine for so long, that my initial panic at leaving the place messy faded away. I reminded myself "Claire used to come over to ask me to play when we were like 5 years old, and I'd be making snow angels in the piles of clothes on my floor. She has seen the time when I tripped on not one, but TWO garbage bags - full of garbage - on my way across my room. She knows I have my moments of messy." So again, I felt better.

Better STILL was when Claire said "I'm making jambalaya for dinner. Want some?" Yes, yes I do. My initial plan for dinner was "try and not just eat cookies for dinner. Again." So, we sat down together, ate some really incredible jambalaya, and then cleaned up and went about our business. I realized how much I missed this kind of thing. You know, just adults hanging out. I also missed having a roommate who has, despite my efforts to throw her for a loop, always been a dear friend. After years and years of adjusting to new roommates and new people, I feel like "I can adjust to this, because she already knows me." And that's, well that's just plain nice.

Now, as long as she doesn't come and look at my pigsty room, I'll be okay. Seriously. I have a shaker of sea salt and a jar of Chef's Secret spices laying on my floor. Not normal.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Sack of %$#@

I don't exactly make a habit out of learning things written on bags. Okay, so when I was younger, our neighborhood grocery store had "Thank you" in all different languages printed on their bags. I mean, otherwise how would I know that "dziękuję" is Thank You in Polish? But pretty much that was the only time I looked a shopping bag and thought "Hey, maybe I could really learn something from this item specifically designed to be thrown away!" Then I got this bag:

So, Lululemon is allegedly a very overly expensive store that sells over priced fancy workout clothes. Not shockingly, I haven't found myself perusing their racks before. But somehow, I came into possession of this bag. It's quite nice, I must say. The perfect size to carry my lunch to work in. Spill-proof. It's great. Um, then I took a closer look at it, and I think I'm going to boycott Lululemon from now on. Here are some words of "wisdom" from the bag - seriously these are taken exactly from the bag:

Do one thing a day that scares you. Um, you know what scares me? Meth. And having my face eaten by a cat. Drinking moldy orange juice. Getting hit by a car. So what, are you really suggesting I give one of those things a shot today, Lululemon? I think not. I'd consider you at fault if I ever develop meth mouth, and will be sure to send you my dental bill.

Dance, Sing, Floss and Travel Okay, first of all, I think you're missing a comma there. Also, slow your roll. Floss AND Travel? Who do you think I am, Super Woman? Sheesh. My advice is that you should have stopped at "Dance, Sing, and Floss". That's cuter, more succinct. Not as pretentious-sounding. Don't you think I'd LIKE to be traveling right now, inanimate bag? If only we were all so lucky to NEED A REMINDER to take a vacation.

The pursuit of happiness is the source of all unhappiness. WHOA. That's horribly depressing. Also, haven't they ever heard the phrase "It's not the destination, it's the journey"? Lighten up, shopping bag.

Drink fresh water and as much water as you can. Water flushes unwanted toxins from your body and keeps your brain sharp. Where do I even BEGIN with this one? First of all? "Less than 1% of the world's fresh water (~0.007% of all water on earth) is accessible for direct human uses." Sure that doesn't have the same ring to it, but hey. It's the truth. Oh, and one more thing, Bag. "Water intoxication, also known as overhydration, is a potentially fatal disturbance in brain functions that results when the normal balance of electrolytes in the body is pushed outside of safe limits by over-consumption of water." Yup, I just schooled you, Bag.

Okay, this is a long one, but...Nature wants us to be mediocre because we have a greater chance to survive and reproduce. Mediocrity is as close to the bottom as it is to the top, and will give you a lousy life. OUCH! What the H, Lululemon? First of all, the first sentence tricked me into thinking "Hey, sometimes it's okay to be mediocre, because then I have a great chance to survive and reproduce." Then they say I'm going to have a lousy life? Get your crappy advice straight! And hurting my feelings via screenprinting is just cowardly. Where's your clever, quippy quote for that, Lulu? "Cowards are okay, as long as they work out and never really have any problems." Jerks.

One more long one. Communication is complicated. We are all raised in a different family with slightly different definitions of every word. An agreement is an agreement only if each party knows the conditions for satisfaction and a time is set for satisfaction to occur. Um, is this a shopping bag or Westlaw? Did I just pass the LSAT?!

I don't know why I got all worked up reading this stupid bag. All I know is that it sounds like there should be a position available as "bag writer" at Lululemon. Because anyone who writes "Jealously works the opposite way you want it to" just isn't doing jealousy correctly and doesn't deserve to write about it.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Marathon Weekend

Wowza, you guys. Marathons are huge challenges. It takes more than heart and dedication to succeed at participating in marathons. You need the drive to continue, even when you think you can't stand one more minute. You need the strength to pull yourself up against all odds. It's no wonder that not many people can actually handle marathons. But I? I am a champion. I succeed when others fail, I defy the odds and rise up against adversity. I participated in not one, but 2 marathons this weekend. So why do I feel so lazy?

Oh that's right. They were TV Marathons.

Yikes. Listen, I'm not proud of my very serious relationship with my TV this weekend, but I can no longer deny it. It was a situation I couldn't get out of. What, is it just a COINCIDENCE that there was a cycle of America's Next Top Model on all day Friday that I haven't seen before? NO. And on Saturday, what, am I just supposed to turn OFF the Law and Order: SVU marathon? No, sir, I cannot do that. It's educational. I'd be stupid NOT to watch!

To make matters even worse, it was 75 degrees and sunny outside all weekend. I am sure I'll be kicking myself come February when it's all blizzardy and treacherous outside, and I'll be thinking "I would give ANYTHING for a weekend like the one in August when I just laid around inside all day painting my nails and not brushing my teeth." Idiot. But my roommates were gone, I was feeling a little down and missing Geo - I actually DID want to go golf, but my friends who like to golf are way too good to be seen with me. Geo likes golfing with me and would have loved to go with me. It probably would have felt like cheating to go without him, so I decided it best to avoid the situation and get back to Tyra Banks and her crazy weaves.

I know, I know. It was a pretty lame way to spend a whole weekend. But it couldn't be helped. It started because I was not feeling well after a super fun night with Kim and a couple friends. We were up until like 4:30 in the morning, so the next day was - um - painful. I thought "What could an hour or two in front of the ol' boob tube hurt?" Cut to....well, right now. Apparently, I must still be recovering.

It's not like I just didn't have any options, though. There were invites to brunch, texts to go out, laying poolside...lots of deliciously fun options were proposed to me. But for some reason, I just got sucked into the television abyss.

I mean, what a cruel joke the networks play on us poor, unsuspecting people? MARATHONS?! Are you kidding me? They all but DEMAND a compulsion to watch. I pried myself away a few times to do things like grocery shop, bake (and eat) some cookies, and do some Zumba (you know, to counteract the cookies), but each time, I kept strolling back to the TV room to check in on Detectives Benson and Stabler. Is there any case they can't solve??

Yeah, not exactly my proudest moments this weekend. I guess I needed to catch up on my...uh...laying around? Being antisocial? Whatever it was, I think I succeeded in catching up on it. It wasn't easy, though. I wanted to give up more than once. Give up and go outside, or unpack some boxes in my room, but I stuck to my guns. I'm really hoping this is the only weekend I participate in marathons of any kind because it really took it out of me. Hang on though...aren't I supposed to get a medal or something? I certainly earned one...

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Bringing "Awesome" Back

Do you guys just ever have those days when you just feel like...UGH! Like, you've been put through the wringer? That was my day today. Obviously, it's been a day for me, seeing as how I'm getting this blog posted all late at night. I need a pick-me-up. Don't you? Here's what we're all going to do tonight. Let's make a list about how AWESOME we are, shall we? I'll start...

Reason #1 Why I'm Awesome: I think people tell good stories. I don't care if it's the most boring story ever, I still get engrossed. No matter who I'm talking to, THEY are the most interesting person ever in the history of time. I like stories. And I like it when people TELL me stories. Okay, so some of them are legit bad stories with, like, no point to them, but chances are I'll like the way you get all amped about whatever you are saying and I'll ask a zillion questions and you'll get annoyed because you just want to finish the story, but I'm all into the details and at the end of the story you'll always be all "Wow, Pharon totally loved that story." I think that's a pretty sick skill that most people don't have.

Reason #2 Why I'm Awesome: I enjoy reading both Cosmo and Kerouac. Hey, both of them have very insightful views on how to feel good naked life.

Reason #3 Why I'm Awesome: I'm smart without being annoying. Listen, you might be shocked to know that I know lots of stuff. I may not go around shoving facts about Shakespeare in your face, but trust that I have FACTS ABOUT SHAKESPEARE. Nothing is more annoying than a know-it-all. Typically, I keep all my super smart Pharon-isms to maself. However, when I went car shopping with Liz the other day, I peppered in facts about Bugatti that were probably, like, ALL TRUE. Turns out...just because it's on TV doesn't make it untrue.

Reason #4 Why I'm Awesome: I'm a bad liar. I recently tried to tell a lie to my friend Kim, and no one bought it. I have an uncanny need to be honest with people. Do you look fat in those jeans? Maybe. Do you think she's cheating on me? Um, she's not NOT cheating on you. Lies just get you into trouble, and no one likes being in trouble.

Reason #5 Why I'm Awesome: I'm going to fix your problem. I don't care or know what it is, but I'm probably just going to go ahead and solve it for you. I like fixing things. At first, I thought it was limited to my abilities to fix furniture and tiling around the house. BUT! I guess it also applies to, like, personal lives. Got a bad co-worker? I'll give you the perfect snarky retort to her next put-down. You'll win everytime, I promise.

Reason #13 Why I'm Awesome: I'm not good at math, and I embrace that.

Okay, I'm starting to feel a wee bit braggy. I'm almost certain that there's nothing wrong with publicly jotting down you best traits so that other people have to read them. I personally think more people should do this kind of thing more often. I just think it's so dumb when people try and make you feel, uh, not awesome Go ahead, guys. Make an Awesome List today. I know you've got a bajillion of reasons why YOU are awesome. Then send your favorites my way, and I'll showcase them on the here. Post 'em in the comments or shoot an email to and I'll showcase them here for all the fives and tens of people to read. You deserve to be noticed for your awesomeness!

Okay, let's all be great this weekend, shall we? I promise to if you do. And if people forget to tell you this: YOU ARE AWESOME.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Dear Crabby

Well hooray for my awesome Book Club! This month, we decided against the cliche "read a book" and instead opted to go to the movie The Help because it was the first book we read in our club oh so many months ago. It was good. Lots of laughs, some people shed a few touching was a gooooood time. But now it's down to business...

Dear Crabby,

I'm worried I'm undate-able lately. I'm always a guy's FRIEND, never anything more. I've tried asking guys out, only to end up discussing their own problems with another girl. I mean, they're nice and all, but I want more. More than a few men have told me they see me as "one of the guys". And I've tried asking them to hook me up with any single guy friends they have, but nothing ever materializes. What can I do get out of Friend Territory, and into Something More??

A Guy's Best Friend

Well, for starters, try getting in with guys who are available. Secondly, it's tough out there, lady. I know plenty of awesome single ladies who are frustrated. Here's the deal, though. I think you just have to keep plugging away. Oh, and how's your self-esteem? I'm pretty sure if YOU'RE confident, you'll have no trouble succeeding. Unless you're crazy. Are you crazy? 'Cause crazy girls are tough to fix up. Be honest with yourself, and your expectations, and go from there. As long as you're confident, and totally NOT crazy, I have nothing but faith that you'll find the right dude. Keep at it, though, and step outside your comfort zone and you might be surprised with what you find. Good luck out there, player!

Dear Crabby,

I know it's summer and everything, but I LOVE the look of a denim mini skirt and Uggs. I'm getting a little older though, but are there any times it's okay to mismatch seasonal attire? I live in Wisconsin, so we're not exactly the fashion capitol of the world, but we're not hicks either! Tell me, though, can I get away with the Uggs/mini skirt??

Confused Couture

No. It's NOT okay. Step away from the Uggs...especially in the summer. You are not Britney Spears circa 2005. Put them away, and strap on some cute sandals. Let your poor tootsies breathe! I don't care if you live in Wisconsin or Tokyo or what. It's not okay. Consider this your Tough Love lesson. You will look like an idiot if you choose that outfit. Sorry. I love you, but

Dear Crabby,

Sooooo....I'm getting married this winter, and I'm pumped! Now, I'm trying to figure out the details on bridesmaid's dresses. What color(s) should I choose? What style? How much is too much to ask my gals to spend? I really don't want to be all Bridezilla about it, you know? What do you think?

Thanks! Love love love you!
-I Do (Not Want to Be a Bridezilla)

Hey's all you need to do. Spend some quality time with the TV when there is a Bridezilla and/or Say Yes To the Dress marathon on. You'll learn more from those shows than I could ever teach you. It's like they're Yoda. But I guess I'll just tell you this, though: Don't ask them to do anything for you that you wouldn't be willing to do for them. Because if you abuse your bridal power, karma will come back around punch you in your newlywed butt and you'll be at your friend's wedding in a neon orange, puffy-sleeved monstrosity. Just focus on having fun, and making it special. I'm sure everyone will look great! Send pics to me after the wedding!!

Alright, those were pretty easy. I guess it's okay though, since I'm pooped and I'm ready for bed. Are you still hungry for more, though? Didn't quite get your own personal problem solved? Send in your questions to and get your question answered by the smartest person in the world! (Me, in case you were confused.)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Internot Date

EEEEE! I'm so excited! Tonight will be the first time I have seen Geo since he left for Alabummer! Stupid AT&T can't figure out how to hook up their OWN EQUIPMENT at his new place, so Geo has been without internet and cable since he left. (Point: Minneapolis.) Anyway, he has this random internet thing that gives him a temporary (and unreliable) internet connection, so now he can record his podcast with the boys, and then Skype me! I've missed seeing his face so much, that I'm actually NERVOUS to see him! It definitely does not help that I've just completed a Zumba workout and won't have time to shower before the call. But do I put on makeup? Put on my Prom dress? I don't know! I feel like it's our first date. At least I don't have to brush my teeth.

Boo. The podcast recording is going long, so I've got another hour to kill before my "date". Guess I have no excuse for not showering anymore. So what now? Do I put makeup back on? Change out of pajamas and into some awesome sequined shirt? I mean, I don't want to look like I'm trying too hard, but I want him to know I tried, you know? Dilemmas, dilemmas.

I've frequently Skype'd with my best pal Madeline, who lives in Chicago. I usually don't care what I look like on those calls (sorry, Madeline!) so this is creating some new anxiety. And you know how when you Skype, ALL you can do is stare back at yourself in that little window? You're ALWAYS distracted by your own gorgeous reflection (Thanks, Narcissus). And the lighting, no matter where you are, is sketchy at best. Shadows are cast in unfortunate places, it's too bright on your forehead, the light behind you makes it look like you're a ghost emerging from the great Beyond...none of it's very flattering.

On top of all that, this isn't just a phone call, so every nose pick, every roll of your eyes, every heap of dirty laundry behind you is all just right there for the other person to see. And you've got to be ENGAGED in the conversation. What if my mind wanders and I find myself in la-la land, and I absently just get up to go to the bathroom? Faux pas! Ugh...nerves!

Okay, so the call with Geo is dunzo now. Good thing I didn't put a bunch of makeup on because the second I saw him, I got all girlie and weepy. That lasted like 25 seconds. Then I told him he needed to decorate his room more because his walls were too bare. Aaaah...nothing gets rid of the sad like a good ol' nagfest. Then his makeshift internet crapped out about 8 minutes in, so all the wardrobe decisions I had gone through were for naught. I asked Geo, when he called me to tell me his internet just wasn't cooperating, if he noticed that I had been wearing one of his favorite shirts. He said "I couldn't see were just playing with your hair so much." Add that to the list of habitual tendencies that I need to keep in check on Skype.

So, the night ended much the same way it does every night. A phone call, a distracted trip to the bathroom to tweeze my eyebrows during the phone call, and a promise that this will all get easier. I don't know how people made long distance work before internet, because even the phone calls just don't seem to cut it sometimes. But, when all is said and done, it was good to see Geo's face, no matter how short it lasted. I noticed he had shaved, he said he could tell I had recently showered. Romance is not dead, friends. But if anything comes out of this situation, it's my strong hatred for AT&T and their inability to hook up Geo's internet properly. Do they not realize what they're doing to my relationship? Jerks.

Allllllright, I'm gonna hit the hay. All this prepping and virtual disappointment really takes it out of a gal. Until tomorrow, why don't you all get started on writing letters to Congressmen about the suckiness of internet service. Okay? Okay!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Neighborhood Watch

Okay, so you remember a looooooooooooong time ago when I wrote an open letter to my neighbors? Well, go refresh your memory if you don't. At any rate, being that I've been in the new digs for almost 2 weeks, I feel completely qualified and prepared to address my NEW batch of neighbors.

To the people who walk around the neighborhood All. The. Time. Where are you going, exactly? You're just walking around with no real destination? It's a foreign concept to me, since I used to live a mere 7 houses away from a big ol' lake with a walking trail around it. I was used to people walking TO the lake, then AROUND it, and then back home. Without a lake anywhere near me, I'm confused by the concept of just walking around your own neighborhood. Wouldn't that be boring? Plus, it's almost spying on your neighbors, I would argue. You're all strolling around, watching as people cook out in their backyards, listening to the dinner conversations of people unaware that you are meandering just outside their bushes. It's rude, right? I mean, I can see walking around the 'hood every once in awhile, but people in these parts do it pretty much every night. Neighborhood walkers? You're creeping me out.

They are also making me feel like a crazy person. Please note that I am definitely NOT a crazy person. I mean, in most neighborhoods, I'm the least crazy person ever. But here, all the people are all "put-together" and "wear matching shoes all the time" and probably don't "eat handfuls of Bac-Os for dinner". Because my only interaction with my neighbors has been at the bus stop thus far, I will have to go ahead and generalize. Everyone around me is a 20-something lawyer, who is happily married, possibly trying for a couple rugrats, eats a balanced dinner every night, and chats about how much you are allowed to water your lawn. Then here comes The New Girl (a.k.a. Me). Sometimes I have wet hair at the bus stop. There are days when I'm listening to Lil' Wayne very loudly on my iPod. I watch Saved by the Bell in the mornings, not the news. And I am not against going to the grocery store in my pajamas. Over in the old neighborhood, I blended in quite nicely with the hipsters and the very old people. At the very least, I was invisible amongst the masses of people doing everything they can to stand out. But here, I feel like I'm the delinquent squatter intruding in Picket Fence town. I'm like the eccentric lady who sews her own wigs out of cat sweaters or something. At least that's how it feels. They all seem to have this smug sense of satisfaction with their briefcases, and their $100 haircuts, and phones that have working internet. Well, you're making me feel weird, Very Young, Successful and Responsible People, so cut that out post haste.

Finally, please - for the love of all that is good and holy - learn how to parallel park if you insist on parking your Prius in front of your house instead of in your garage. Do you REALLY need 5 feet of space between you and the car in front of you? No, dudes. You don't. And what's wrong with parking next to the curb instead of on top of it, or 26 yards away from it? The curb is your friend, guys, not something to be afraid of. Oh yeah! And when I'M speedily parallel parking, feel free to NOT almost side-swipe me because you can't be bothered to tap your brakes. It takes me all of 15 seconds to ace my parking job, so just hold your horses and wait a second. Maybe take some notes while you wait...I'm basically the best parker ever, so Bad Parkers, consider yourself lucky to be getting a free lesson.

That feels good. I'm glad I got that off my chest. Chances are, I probably have a lot more in common with my neighbors than I think, but sometimes you just can't help but judge a book by its cover. In this case, they are an Encyclopedia (for all you youngsters, an Encyclopedia is a book where information is. Like a hard copy of Google) and I am a tattered, but still totally awesome, paperback copy of Summer Sisters by Judy Blume. Both are good, but you don't really put them together on the book shelf. Regardless, we are all books and are full of good stuff. Meanwhile, this book analogy has gone on long enough. Let's just close this chapter, shall we?

The End.

I Looked Awesome in College (Trust Me?)

Long story short, my girlfriend Freda came into town tonight. We chatted. reminisced, you know how chicks do. Anyway, I had a great time catching up and I showed her the Minnesota scenery by taking her to dinner on the Mississippi River, which was very lovely.

But then we started sorting through old pictures. I learned a few things. First? I looked awesome in college. Second? I looked AWESOME IN COLLEGE. We went through dozens of pictures and I miss the days of printed photographs. It's just not the same as breezing through albums on Facebook. It was so much more pleasing to hand the tangible pictures back and forth with Freda. I wanted to post a picture here, but the internet connection is just not cooperating right now. I'll post a very nice pic soon illustrating just how AWESOME I LOOKED. UPDATE: Just got the World's Best Picture uploaded.


LOOKIN' GOOD, LADY. This was taken, I believe on the night of my 21st birthday. I'll assume that since I appear to be in one piece, this was a picture taken before going out to celebrate with a beer or twelve. I dig my kicky matching sweater set and handmade crown. That lei is a mystery, though, as I did not attend college in Hawaii. I guess it looks festive though? Based on the look on my face, I'm ready to celebrate.

Also? Please note the eyebrow ring. That's right, I was a rebel and had my eyebrow pierced on a whim, on my way to an English class. I think it looks fancy in this pic.

Anyhoozle, I gotta call it a night. It's late, I'm exhausted, and I'm a mature adult who needs to get up for work tomorrow.

Alright guys, let's make this week epic, shall we?

Thursday, August 11, 2011


Nostalgia. What's up, Word of the Day? I couldn't escape it today. At work, Geo texted me and asked "Hey! What's up? How's your day?" And I responded with "I'm feeling very stabby right now." Which sent me back in time to my beloved first job out of college, where our Production team would frequently tell me "This project has me all stabby." Then I got all mushy missing my dear old friends from the good ol' days. I came home and saw the goodbye present I got a billion years ago from that job, which was a mocked up cover of our magazine with my face on it and all kinds of little headlines that both mocked and adored me. I still totally love that thing. Nostalgia.

Here's some hilarious background on nostalgia. Okay, so apparently when I was crazy young, we were cleaning out the attic in my childhood home. My mom tells me she was going through bajillions of boxes with crap from all of us five kids, and cleaning them all out. She got to my box. She'd throw some random article of mine in "trash", but then she'd casually toss all my favorite belongings into the "Nostalgia" pile. I started crying and wailing and being otherwise annoying. My mom was all "What's the matter, crazy person?" And I sobbed, "Who is Nostalgia and WHY is she getting all my stuff?!"


Since that day, I've always had a soft spot for all things nostalgic. The other night, I got an email from my former roommate. She said she was a titch homesick for our old place. I agreed. I'd been having similar feelings lately. I was all "I miss the possibility of having mice in a house." And "All these young 'very put-together' people in my new neighborhood are making me feel like I'm bad Lifetime movie character." And "I want my hammockkkkkk!" So, I did what any rational girl would do. I jumped in my car and drove past my old house to see if it missed us too.

Turns out, I couldn't tell. You know, because it's a house.

But on my way to my old place, I was pleased and plagued by all the familiar things I was comforted by in that neighborhood. Zillions of kids screaming for no reason, no one understanding what a Cross Walk is, but also predictable stop signs and potholes, and the wonderfully familiar scent of the Lake of the Isles. I drove by my old house twice. Once to make sure it was still there, and again to just make sure someone was tending to the wasps nests that tend to form in the columns of the balcony. Sigh. Everything looked fine.

Nostalgia is a very protective thing for me. I don't want anyone else to mess with my memories. I mean, I even go as far as to hate everyone who frequents my college bar. THEY don't know how awesome it was...only I do. And hey, wait! You can't just throw away that hat I wore at my first boy-girl party! RUDE! And how DARE a new breed of youngsters re-discover Saved By the Bell! It's not "kitsch" man, it's LIFE. Jerks.

Anyhoozle, I'm all gooshy and nostagia-y today.

Meanwhile, this weekend, my girlfriend from college is swinging by to see me. I haven't seen her in foreves. Seriously. I've seen her like 3 times in the past 5 or 6 years. So I'm pretty sure I'm going to be incredibly nostalgic with her. Lucky girl!

Well, Nostalgia, whoever you are: Let's not screw this weekend up. We'll give you our best stuff, so make sure it's cool, okay?

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Dear Crabby - FINALLY!

Wowza! Can it be true that the last Dear Crabby was two weeks ago!? I feel horrible. There have literally been fives and tens of people waiting for my help with bated breath. Fear not! I'm back at it, Squares! Nothing too life-changing in the hopper, but it's good to get a little warm up in so I don't pull anything by advising too quickly after such a long break. Let's do it.

Dear Crabby,

So I know you're a fellow Public Transportation fan, much like I am. Here's the thing, I'm getting really sick of getting sucked into a book just as I get off my train. Any suggestions on how I can stay distracted but not for too long?

About to Decide to Drive

What's up, A.D.D.?

I know the feeling! As soon as I re-remember all the characters in my book (Game of Thrones, in case you care...which I'm sure you do because it's AWESOME), it's time to get off the bus. It's getting really irritating. But what I like to do is watch a little TV. I downloaded the first season of Happy Endings, which is, quite possibly, the best show on TV right now. Trust me. It's the perfect combination of quick entertainment, constant lol's, and it's not all hard to follow. So, it's great transpor-tainment. Oooh, I like that word. Dibs on making that term up! Anyway, yeah, put some good ol' boob tube on your iPod. It'll make the ride way better, and then you'll know what I mean when I say things like "Women be shoppin'. Women. Be. Shoppin'." Hilars!

Dear Crabby,

I'm pregnant! Woo hoo! I'm pretty excited, and everything is all good in my utero-hood. Here's my big problem. We aren't finding out the sex of this little bun in my oven, and my husband is saying some crazy things regarding names. Cloris has been mentioned for a girl. Stoker and Masher for a boy (what's with the verb names, btw!?) I don't want to hurt his feelings, but those are just not okay with me. Got any suggestions for what I can say to him?

Thanks so much,
Not Naming My Baby Cheech

Hey yo, NNMBC,

I'm shocked you came to a person named PHARON for advice on how to avoid an undesirable name. Bravo! Also, congrats on the fetus! I'll drink your share of the wine for you. You're welcome. Anyhoozle, I don't know how people agree on names for their offspring. Usually, the people I know are super opposite, but then somehow, the thing comes out, and someone says a name, and it just works. I guess all I can tell you is to call his bluff. Passionately throw out some crazy weird names. Then randomly pepper in your REAL favorites, and he'll probably fall for it. You could be all "Let's see. I like Pippola, Shlacy, Poiple, or maybe Abigail for a girl. Or how about Stallion, Durd, or Ethan for a boy." Unless he's an idiot, you'll be meeting little Abigail or Ethan someday. Regardless, you're going to love little Stacey or Snowball, no matter her name!

Dear Crabby,

A friend of mine borrowed a bag of mine, and when I got it back, it looked HORRIBLE! The zipper was broken, apparently a squid or something exploded all over the inside, and it was just so terrible! It's a pretty pricey bag, but it's a year or two old so I feel really bad asking her to pay me for the whole thing. But it's not like I am going to go out and pay a bunch to only FIX it. I don't know what to do. She's typically a really nice and considerate person, but all she said when she gave it back was "Sorry, I guess I kind of wore it out a little!" What do I do?

Sad Sack

Oh no, Sad Sack! That sucks! What kind of person DOES that?! I would guess that for the most part, women who are okay with loaning out their belongings typically do so expecting to get it back in the same condition. When something bad happens, though, the normal thing to do is for the offender to offer to replace the item. In this case, I wouldn't wait too long. I'd straight up tell her that your bag makes you sad now, and the only thing that will cheer you up is a replacement bag. If you're willing to, offer to chip in for a new or similar bag. Otherwise, you shouldn't feel obligated to do that. If she puts up a fuss, ask to borrow her most expensive thing and then either destroy it or keep it for yourself. All's fair in love and ruining other people's stuff.

w000000t! I like getting back into the swing of things! I've missed hearing all your problems, because I've been consumed with my own, which was just so lame. Okay, so now that I'M back, you better get your butts in gear and email your hangups, issues, problems, drama, etc. to And next week, we'll do it all over again! I'm sure you can't wait. But you MUST! Alright, nutjobs, take care!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

My Stain Campaign

Um, can I ask you guys a question? Great, thanks. So...who decided that minor stains on clothes were so terrible? A reason to throw away a perfectly good and adorable article of clothing? Shameful and pathetic? Some Snob, that's who. Listen, I'm not saying you should walk around with dirty clothes, or show up to work in the t-shirt you use when you dye your hair in the bathtub. I'm just saying that I don't see what the big deal is if you get, say, a tiny little red wine stain on the bottom of your super cute yellow Fred Rogers-y sweater that you only got to wear twice before splashing it with, like, one (okay, ten) TINY little droplet(s) of Pinot Noir. Does that really demote me to hobo status?

I think not.

Okay, full disclosure. I wore a stained sweater today. I didn't even realize it until it was way too late. I was standing at work, gnashing my teeth and throwing my arms around in exasperation because of some stupid little thing, when I flipped the bottom of my sweater up and saw the stains. My face flushed and burned and I almost ripped my whole outfit off. I felt like everyone was looking at me and my big red stain(s). Then I started mourning the eventual loss of my sweater. I'd have to throw it away, right? Or wait. Do I?

I decided that NO, SOCIETAL NORMS, I DON'T HAVE TO THROW IT AWAY. I will not be a slave to conventional laundry rules. Listen, I stain my clothes ALL the time because I'm clumsy and I'm very passionate about eating and drinking. But starting now, I refuse to just throw away an article of clothing because it's got a little imperfection on it. It's like a scar. A stain is like a permanent memory of an event. Who am I to argue with the odd ways of nostalgia?

There is obviously a line. Bodily fluid stains of any kind are def not okay. I'm not going to walk around with a big blood stain on my jeans after tripping on the street and mashing up my knee. No. (I almost made a Monica Lewinsky joke here, but I'll abstain. HA!) And probably if the stain is any larger than, I don't know, a hand print it should probably be tossed away as well. But a small ground-in dirt stain on the hem of a long skirt is no reason to go wasting otherwise perfectly good clothes.

A stain is a stain. It doesn't make something DIRTY. Sure it might look unappealing to someone to see an itty bitty grass stain on the elbow of my shirt, but that's not MY problem, right? If you get a scar on your eyebrow after walking into a door, you don't go throwing your face away, do you? No, you don't.

Sure I'd like to be the kind of person who always looks like I crawled out of the pages of a J. Crew ad - you know, all perfect and crisp and clean with bright white things on - but I'm not. I don't iron my clothes, I don't use fabric softener, and I gesture too wildly to control the gravitational effects of spaghetti. It's who I am, people.

What do you guys think? Do you think it makes me a sloppy person for knowingly wearing something that has a stain on it? Not a gross one, or even a big one. But like a regular ol' lipstick stain on a jacket sleeve that just won't come out (seriously, all the stains I've mentioned here are ones that I have on my clothes. Clothes that I still wear.) That's not bad, right? Am I the only one embracing this concept of apparel imperfection? I really hope not, because style is only skin deep people, and those little quirks are what makes each of us individuals. Who's with me!?

Monday, August 8, 2011

Ginormotron, Buses, and Other Achievements In My Day

Great news!  I didn't get beat up OR humiliated on the bus today.  Sure, I arrived at my stop 145 minutes early this morning. And big whoop if I scanned my Metropass at the wrong time on my way home.  The point is, I made it to work and back here relatively unscathed.  And when I got home from work, instead of being inundated with 100 of my former roommates friends, as I did in the past, I came home and grilled a delicious, healthy dinner with the new roommies.  Sometimes the perks of change sneak up on you.

At any rate, I managed to get back to work today.  I was nervous.  I was scared I had forgotten how to do my job.  I was all "What do I do again??"  But instead, I fell a$$ over teakettle back into my comfortable routine.  I got more done today than I do in any given month.  I was all spreadsheets and sales kits and before I knew it, it was 2 p.m. and I hadn't taken a bathroom break yet.  I'm pretty sure most overachievers eventually develop bladder infections.


Anyhoozle, despite the fact that I kicked buttowski at work it, it turns out I woke up too early, left too early for the bus, and basically wasted a lot of time just waiting around before and after work today.  That's what I get when I overestimate time and always err on the side of getting there/getting things done early.  But maybe I was just overly ready to get back to bidness today.  Because eventually, I was at work, tackling project after project, just thinking "I'm back in control, yo!" and it felt very very nice.

Meanwhile, Claire and I just hooked up Geo's enormotron TV in her basement, and we are now enjoying the fruits of our labor.  A giant Conan O'Brien head?  Yes please!  I'm exhausted now, but I feel good, guys.  I feel like I've gotten a lot accomplished today, and I'm all "King of the World"-y for right now.  I'm assuming this feeling will last oh, I don't know, for about 8 hours and then I'll be at work tomorrow being all "I gotta get out of here!"  I don't know.  I guess we'll have to wait and see.

Okay, well, Claire is calling me to see a hilarious YouTube video, so duty calls.  Thanks for all your supportive thoughts this morning when I was tackling the white whale that was my New Bus, by the way.  It definitely helped!

Sunday, August 7, 2011


It is officially my last night of my "vacation".  Not going to work for the past week has been wonderful.  I've gone to sleep late, woke up well after restaurants stopped serving breakfast, and despite the massive transitions happening in my life at the time, I enjoyed the freedom with which I could enjoy my days.  But tomorrow, it's back to the grindstone.  Back to business.  Back to routine.  There is a part of me that is very relieved to get back to a schedule, and that I'll be spending the day amongst adults rather than unpacked boxes.  There is one part that terrifies me though.  I will most certainly lose sleep over it.

Tomorrow I will have to ride a new bus.

I had never been on a city bus before living in my last apartment.  So when I finally starting riding the bus, I knew one bus.  One route.  One schedule.  Now, instead of walking to my bus stop 2 houses away, I walk 2 very long blocks away.  Plus, it's an "Express" bus.  Do I swipe my card when I get on?  Or off?  Or not at all?  Where will it drop me off?  Will it be a chronically late bus like the good ol' 25 line?  I don't know!  I can't even remember what number it is!  And, as I wondered aloud to my roommates Claire and Andrew, what if I got on the bus going the OPPOSITE direction?  What if I miss it?  What if people on the bus try and talk to me even though I'm busy watching episodes of Happy Endings on my iPod?  So many questions!  So many new things to figure out!

It was very appropriate tonight, then, to go Back to School shopping with my sister Padrin and her two kids.  I feel like I myself am heading back to school, what with the new bus stuff to learn.  I wanted to stock up like the kids on matching folders and notebooks, #2 pencils, and highlighters, but instead I checked out new Bus Bags (a bag, in addition to my enormous purse, to carry my lunch, shoes, umbrella, etc. in so I'm prepared for anything).  I came up with nothing, which made me even more nervous about tomorrow.  How will I carry all my non-essentials?!

As I was leaving my parents house after shopping, my mom made a hilarious suggestion.  So, Claire and I grew up next door to each other, and have photographic evidence of the two of us together for about 8 years for the First Bus Ride of the Year at our corner bus stop.  My mom suggested Claire and I take a photo together tomorrow morning.  I offered this once in a lifetime opportunity to Claire, and though she laughed hysterically, she was certainly not going to humor me.

But, I've set out my clothes for tomorrow, packed up my iPod after loading it with new podcasts and TV shows, and studied the bus route map for longer than I care to admit.  I'm hoping that I don't end up in St. Paul instead of Minneapolis, or that I don't fall asleep or something and miss my stop altogether.  But as one of my friends helpfully pointed out "Uh, Pharon?  It's a bus.  Not a spaceship."  Hmm.  Good point.  Maybe I should be a little bit more concerned with actually not falling asleep or having a nervous breakdown at WORK.  That's a tad more important...

Alright, good luck out there this week everyone!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Alabummer Bound...For Realsies This Time

Alright, guys.  I'm back.  I'm horribly puffy-eyed and a zillion pounds heavier than I was last week, but that's why I blog and not vlog.  It was a long effing day.  I spent the afternoon holding back tears and shopping for underwear with Geo (go on over and check out to see what that's all about) before he finally packed up his bags and headed down to Alabama.  Stupid Alabama.  

Guh.  I miss Geo a butt load already.  You don't realize how much you actually like someone until they are leaving.  Here's a tip for those of you considering giving a long-distance relationship a shot:  Don't.  It's hard.  And it's sad.  And Geo owns a lot of stuff that I like to use on a regular basis.  Like an iPad.  So that's a big loss right there.

I went to my parents house after Geo left to bawl my eyes out, and I nearly scared my nieces away from me for good.  "What's wrong with your face, Pharon?"  Despair, kid.  Well, that, and poor skin care for the past couple weeks - don't shy away from the nightly face wash, kids.  My mom and sister Padrin ordered me out of the house for a nice dinner with them, which was greatly appreciated.  You know who's more annoying than a woman sobbing over a man?  No one.  So, sitting amongst normal human beings was a very good idea.  The second Padrin starting dishing some good gossip, I felt confident enough to remove my Hollywood-style sunglasses and tried to feel the sun on my eye bags.  That glass of wine was very helpful too.

Here's what I'm getting at.  Geo moving away for fewer than two years straight up sucks.  He's some of my best blogging material!  But, if I'm being honest, it mostly sucks because I just love him and miss seeing his crap laying around the house.  He assured me that this would be the hardest day, and I hope he's right because it's been a dumb, dumb day.

I'll try and end this on a bit of a cheerier note, though:  I had a dream last night that Ashton Kutcher proposed to me and then told me that we were going to move back to Iowa City (where he's from for REAL, and I went to college there for REAL) and he was going to be a biochemical engineer.  I said it was cool, but he gave me a really weird ring with a bell on it, and I also knew he secretly loved Jennifer Garner, so I hooked them up and then they sent me a tiger as a "thank you".  And the tiger was adorable and I named her Steamfoot Hotbutt because, well, that's just how it happens in dreams.  The point is, I will be getting a pet tiger.

Okay, have a great weekend, everyone!

Monday, August 1, 2011

I'm Lost, and I Can't Geocache My Way Out

Yowza. Lots has happened since my last post. Without boring you with the details, here's a quick outline:

1. We've officially moved out of our beloved house.
     a. Cleaning a four bedroom house with just Geo and me was excruciating
     b. Moving while it's 98 degrees outside makes for a cranky Pharon
     c. Geo commented, as we were arguing about the logistics of hauling a weight bench up from our basement, that it was "good couples skill building" because it builds "patience".  I asked "Why, have you lost all yours with me?" and he said "It's just a challenge."  RUDE.
     d. After all was said and done, our house looks better than it did the day we moved in. I wonder if there's any chance I could re-rent it.
     e. I think the process of moving makes the process of LEAVING a place easier. Though I shed a few tears as I was pulling away, I was so relieved to just be DONE that I coped better than I thought.

2.  I've moved into my friend Claire's house.
     a.  It is hard moving into someone else's house when they already live there.  As good of friends as Claire and I are, I can't help but feeling like I'm constantly breaking unwritten rules of the house.
     b.  Unpacking is not nearly as much fun when I know I'll be moving again in the next year, and I just finished one of the most hellish moves ever.
     c.  Why did I pack so many stupid extension cords?
     d.  Why didn't I pack more toothpaste?

3.  I'm an emotional wreck with Geo's impending departure to Alabama on Thursday.
     a.  I thought I was going to be all cool and calm and collected.  I am definitely not.  I told my sister Prinna, in between sobs on the phone, that I thought I'd be doing better than I am.  She told me to not worry about it so much, and it would all be okay, and I knew she was right.  So I blew my nose in a sock and pulled myself together.
     b.  I'm getting a cold, which makes everything worse.
     c.  I haven't made a good food choice in a full week.  I ate a cookie instead of veggies.  French toast instead of fresh fruit.  Bag of Bugles instead of a real lunch.  How do you know if you have gout?  I told Geo "Sorry, but this is probably the fattest I'll ever be.  Technically, it's YOUR fault though, so...yeah."  He said "What? You're crazy.  You look great."  Smart guy.

4.  Geocaching is just not all it's cracked up to be.
     a.  What is geocaching, you ask?
           i.  It's a good way to get outside and walk around and have fun by looking for little mini treasures in your very own neighborhood using a GPS.
           ii.  It's also a very good way to get Lyme's disease
     b.  Why would you go geocaching, Pharon?
           i.  My lovely family wanted to take my mind of going nutso about Geo.  By going GEOcaching.
           ii.  If we would have gone somewhere other than the rain forest we apparently have in Edina, I would have totally loved it.  I like hide and seeking, actually!  But the bugs were THICK AS THIEVES and our GPS was on the fritz so we couldn't actually find anything.  Bummer.
     c.  I will  be geocaching again, though.  It DID take my mind off Geo for at least a little while.  That is, until I decided that Geo would probably LOVE geocaching.  Wah wahhhhhhhh....

So, there it is guys.  My life and weekend in a nutshell.  I've got a desk now, which holds my computer, so my blogs will definitely be easier to put together.  Towards the end of the move, my computer was tucked in my dirty laundry basket, so you can trust that I was shocked to find it at all.  Send me some good thoughts, guys. I've got a lot of adjusting to do here pretty quick, and I am a horribly stubborn person.  What could go wrong??

Alright, I'm off to bed in my new pad for the second time.  Sweet dreams!