Monday, February 08, 2010

Disaster does gourmet (no knitting)

It's been one of those weeks (months? years?) at work when I just can't seem to get out of my own way.  Which makes getting things done difficult.  No one else seems to want to get out of my way either, so that complicates things a bit more.  While "because I said so" worked about 75% of the time for my mother, it really, really doesn't work at work.

To make me feel better, we went out to eat at a quiet little local bistro-ey, tavern-ey place.  The building is brick, the wood floors creak comfortingly, the lighting is just right, and the staff are friendly.  I had flank steak with chopped green olives, roast fingerling potatoes with blue cheese and shallots, and roasted tomato.  I don't know what they put into the chopped olives, but I could have eaten a plate of just the olives, they were so good.  As it was, they went wonderfully with the steak and the tomato.  The potatoes? They're a starch, and starch and I have a lifetime relationship of dependency (entirely on my side).  The food was great, the serving size was reasonable, the beer was good.  A panacea, the atmosphere and my meal worked wonders.   Thank you Monty's!

Friday, January 08, 2010

Packing our...

stuff. I looked it up in a dictionary - and discovered that some definitions resonate more than others. We're buying a home at the end of the month, which means packing up eight years of apartment living. Very small apartment living. Which does not stop you from gathering stuff. And stuffing your stuff.
These definitions are so apt:

-material of some unspecified kind
-worthless things or matter
-inward character, qualities, or capabilities (made of strong stuff)
-slang. any kind of drug, esp. an illicit one*

-to fill (a receptacle), esp. by packing the contents closely together; cram full
-to fill (an aperture, cavity, etc.) by forcing something into it**
-to clutter or fill (the mind) with facts, details, etc***

*I never really thought of creative supplies, books and bundt pans as "illicit", but after contemplating our box to stuff ratio, I'm willing to admit that we may very well have a "stuff" problem in some areas. Especially books. Which I need to breathe. Apparently.

**Forcing matter into aperatures. Take everything you own and pretend it's a jigsaw puzzle. With multiple possible solutions. Attempting to solve it leads you to the conclusion that booze (as matter) also fits into your face (cavity). Which may or may not help with packing, but certainly helps with creativity.

***As far as a cluttered and filled mind - we're there. Without a doubt. Seldom in your day-to-day will you find your life and that of complete strangers mashed together into a legal goulash. But buying a house opens new vistas. Their financial issues suddenly become my financial issues, and we have to work it out together. I find I am suddenly much more organized than I want to be (this is strictly panic driven), and I believe I have used every scrap of good manners my parents ever tried to impart to me (they'd be so proud). Together, the Better Half and I have become some kind of lingo translating, paper work resolving machine. Which means our heads are full of the comedy of errors that is our current housing market and its components. We have become quite skilled at hurrying up to wait. And following up phone calls with clarifying emails or vice versa. And signing our names on some seriously grown up paperwork (while trying not to look at the total dollar amount and think about how long 30 years is).

It's a cute house. It's also warm and dry and light. And, for the first time in years, we will have room to host a lot of people we love in amongst our stuff. So taking the field against our own collected belongings (a little like arguing with yourself in the mirror), will definitely have some casualties, but will ultimately be well worth it.