Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Twitter Guilt

Twitter me this: Do you have Twitter Guilt?

You know what I'm talking about - that nagging queasiness in the pit of your stomach when you check back in with Twitter after a day or two away? That sand-in-your-eye burning when you see how chatty the Twittervese has been since you logged off? That ringing in your ears when you realize that you just tweeted something "They" all talked about yesterday or that you have DMs that you really, really wish you had seen and replied to a day ago?

Yeah, I have that. Bad.

I try to take the time to log off during the week, to step away from the constant (occasionally annoying, if not entirely overwhelming) updates of not only Twitter, but Facebook, LinkedIn, and my RSS Feed, to name a few. I try to step away and say, "Hey, let's focus people!" And by "people," I do mean me. Oh, and by "focus," I do not mean me.

Just wanted to clarify.

Back to the point, there's a very real feeling of guilt when I return to these series of tubes we call the Internet. I can hear the murmurs of abandonment in my keyboard, taste the bitter bile of being out of the loop for an extended period of time.*

Or I could be overly imaginative. That's a possibility.

Yet, I have it. The guilt. About Twitter.

So, to sum up: I have Twitter Guilt.

My condition makes me wonder: How do other people do it? How do you step away and come back to the Twitterverse with ease, grace, and jazz hands waving proudly in the air?

I'd like to know - even if your jazz hands are more like spirit fingers.

*Which, if I may, is more often than not less than 6-hours.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Of Ms. Johnson

I have a friend. Her name is Ms. Johnson. I have known her since kindergarten. She claims to remember me from a major freak-out from yours truly over a visit to the nurse's office (how was I supposed to know there weren't any needles involved in a hearing check-up?); I claim to remember her from a chorus concert in which we were dressed as Native Americans (in tattered shirts, beads, and war paint - classy, my kindergarten) and we bonded over the matching color of our "authentic" Native American feathers.

Destiny - that's what this was, people. We're friends for the long haul. And by "long haul" I do mean a rather odd shared childhood of oldies music and plaid shirts, an awkward preteen stage of...awkwardness, high school years that sung of mutual angst and change, and finally today, as young adults striving for the stars and believing that Pluto (planet and dog) received the shaft like whoa.

Clearly, good friends. So good of friends, in fact, that I know she will not mind me posting this picture:

Or this picture:

Or this one:

Why am I writing about Ms. Johnson? Because I just got back from a trip to her new Southern abode and thought of how far we've come from the smaller, younger, scruffier versions of ourselves almost 2-decades ago. And she's rather fantastic and seems to be blissfully unaware of the fact. Ergo, ego boost - rock out that new city, Missy!

That's an order. Or request. Or RFP. Your choice.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Cupcakes were made to NOT outlast a celebration

I love cupcakes, as a previous entry may suggest. I love their size, their paper wrappers, their ability to make even the most hardened man look a like a little kid. Cupcakes are powerful and wonderful in my world.

But, today. Today, I fear that the all-mighty cupcake and I are reaching a breaking point.

“Oh, no! Why, Kristen? For all that is holy and pure and delicious in the world, why?” you cry.

Three words: Cupcake buffet overload.

For my family graduation celebration, I baked 10-dozen cupcakes. I frosted 10-dozen cupcakes. I served 10-dozen cupcakes. And today, 4-dozen cupcakes sit contently in my freezer, naïve to the pain they are causing me by their very existence.

I know this venture didn’t start in this anti-cupcake manner – it wasn’t always a sinkhole of flour, sugar, and butter. Once it was a beautiful party for my graduation. And I have pictures to prove it:

The set-up:
How Martha of me! Color-coordinated, labeled, and tiered! I just grabbed white bowls, flipped them over, and used Museum Wax to secure white plates for the cupcakes to rest upon. Call me a simpleton with vision.

The Grub: Vanilla

Plain and simple. For the classic palate.

The Grub: Lemon
Yes, these cupcakes are yellow and blue. Think school colors with a zesty finish.

The Grub: Carrot
The first cupcakes to go…because we forgot there was another dish in the other refrigerator.

Silver lining: They were fun to pipe. Dark, death-metal lining: I still have three bags of orange, green, and brown (see chocolate cupcake) icing in my house.

The Grub: Angel food
Loved by those who ate them; loathed by the rest of us. Sadly, 2- of the 4-dozen cupcakes in my freezer belong in the Angel food category.

The Grub: Pina Coloda
My absolute FAVORITE. Fun to make, fun to decorate, fun to eat.

Plus, the dried pineapple resembles a dorsal fin on a shark, so I was able to make a variety of Jaws references throughout the party. “Here are more cupcakes – oh, no! No room…I think we need a bigger boat!”

The Grub: Double Chocolate Chip with Mortar Boards
Winner of the whimsy award for the mortar board hat and tassel.

The hat? A solid wedge of milk chocolate – hello, sweetheart!

Once, these were dazzling cupcakes. Now, they are a slew of hockey puck sized weights in my freezer. Yes, my guests did their part – chatting, eating, and taking my comments of “Remember, I’m counting all of your cupcake wrappers before you leave” as jest. To their credit, they ate heartily, my brave party-goers, and still...

Still: 4-dozen cupcakes.


Cupcakes, anyone?

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Everything is Cooler...in China [Video] - repost

From the Camp Champ China Mojo Blog, by your's truly:


I feel like I should have a shirt that says, "It's been three months and all I have to show for it is a 6-minute video."

It's been three months since our little band of MOJO-ers high-tailed it to northwesten China. Three months - good golly, Ms. Molly! I can't say it feels like yesterday, last week, or even last month that we traversed the Chinese landscape and bathed in the generosity of our hosts. It feels entirely like three months. I can say, however, that still feels real, which is more than I can say for my trips to Disney (at age 6 and 17, respectively). And that, ladies and gentlemen, says quite a lot, as I've been staring at the trip footage for, well, three months now.

Oh, yes: the footage. While waltzing along the Yellow River one day, it was brought to my attention by Dr. Rob Williams that even the most mundane activities were instantly cooler as a result of the little phrase "...in China." I lounged on a rock/seat/crevice and said, "I'm sitting on a rock...in China" and it was true! Sitting never looked so cool! Hence, the following retrospective, entitled "Everything is Cooler in China". All edited and ready for your enjoyment.

China. The land of the cool.