Friday, September 30, 2005

One Bad-Ass Gryllus pennsylvanicus

Right now I am sitting outside Alissa and Todd's house, close enough to the cozy, warm kitchen to enjoy their wireless Internet access, but not actually close enough to go into the warm coziness, because the door is locked. (Which is okay! No more apologizing! Because I invited myself! And I'm mooching free room and board! And you already had plans! I'm fine!)

But seriously? There is this incredibly determined cricket out here, man. He is CHIRPING his little thorax off. I mean, I'm not getting your average "cricket-cricket... cricket-cricket" here (which, by the way, is what the sounds of silence are like when you let it slip to the current wedding client's florist that "the last wedding I photographed, just two weeks ago, had all red and white roses, too. Yeah, well, no.. no florist. My friend and her wife did almost everything themselves! Same color scheme, in fact. So pretty!"

Response from client's florist : (::::cricket-cricket... cricket-cricket...:::) *Her* wife?

Response to client's florist: "YUP! So pretty! They're very close friends of mine." (with a maniacal smile that clearly says, "If you *even* go there, Betty, I will wrap you in a rainbow flag, cover you in honey and throw you to the lesbians!"

So ANYWAY, this cricket has attitude. He's all, "CHIRP! CHIRP! CHIRP! Don't even try to count the number of my chirps in 14 seconds and add 40 to get the temperature, bitches! I am chirping like it's 85 degrEEEs out here! [I assure you; it is not] CHIRP! CHIRP! Woo, it's hot!! I am going to mate or I am going to die trying!! Say, do you like pina coladas, baby? What's your sign? Playing hard to get, eh? Ah, you're a piece of gravel... Well, that explains *that.* I'm sure there are some other Stenopelmatinae around here! CHIRP! CHIRP! CHIRP! I'm a cricket! Do you hear me? I wanna hear you! GAAAAH. I'll even make peach pancakes! CHIRP! CHIRP! CHIRP!"

It has been a solid 30 minutes without a break. Aren't the crickets all supposed to die by the time it's cold enough for Haunted Halloween Hayrides (or rather, Eastern State Former Correctional Faciilties?)

Oh, and whatever you do, don't even THINK about trying to break into Alissa and Todd's house. Ever. Can't be done. Not even through the root cellar. Oh, no, you *ain't* gonna steal their laptops.

I'm gonna go wait in my car, I think.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

A pink carnation and a pick-up truck

Happy Birthday to the Person Who...

Loves when I get song lyrics wrong, but once believed that the song American Pie included the words: "I was a lonely teenage drunken f*ck" instead of "I was a lonely teenage broncin' buck"

Wraps presents much, much better than I do.

Seriously had to restrain herself from saying, "Look, use a condom next time and don't hit my car in the parking lot."

Will wear a red wedding dress, tradition be damned, this coming November.

Knows that "dammit!" can be the right thing to say on any occasion.

Really, really loves her dog.

Points at trees wherever she goes.

Is marrying a man who is kind enough to offer to follow my rental car back to the airport, so we can have just 20 more minutes before we have to say goodbye. (Oh, and this is when gas costs $3.09 a gallon.)

Is the consummate union bridesmaid and union-compliant bride.

Does the "Lapsed Catholic Feminist Head Bow For a Blessing Instead of Communion" manuever like she's been doing it for years.

May or may not have been the person who taught her baby brother his first word: "Shit."

Can go nine years without even thinking about the phrase "Soft as a Grape" and burst out laughing instantly after hearing it again.

Once gave me a Chia Pet for Christmas. (Which I loved.)

Knows just what you should do if your dog eats any of the following: the Thanksgiving turkey, sparklers, chocolate, birth control pills, Rise and Shine Orange Shower Gel from Bath and Body Works.

Happy Birthday, Kelbaby! Can't wait to see you! :)

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Here come the brides!

Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.
A slideshow of Jill and Nikki's wedding (shot by Luke and myself) can be seen here.

(Or you can click on the photo of their dresses to see them on Enjoy!

Monday, September 19, 2005

Guilty Pleasures

Bad Canadian TV (Really bad. Awful, in fact. Don't click on this link. I already owe Gwen big-time for introducing her to this.)


Torrd (I'm a size 0! Arbitrary sizing! Woo!)

Whoa. I called up both of these sites to link to their URL... And Terry from Degrassi is modeling the psuedo-military fashions. It's like some kind of unholy pop culture... thing.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Massachusetts, my favorite commonwealth

Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.
You know, too much love isn't really what we need to worry about. It's hate you need to keep your eye on...

For just one brief, heart-pounding moment, I thought this old man was going to start talking them about Jesus. If he had, I would have put my camera down and happily committed a hate crime against assholes everywhere, right there on the dock. He was just bewildered, I think, and a few seconds later, a woman in a passing car with a rainbow sticker honked and shouted "You rock, ladies!" out the window.

Such a beautiful weekend.

"And I recall in my sleep how you changed my life on Magnolia Street. A dream, but it's true; I am not the same since I met you. And I feel like I'm going home, but not to the one I've known."
-Catie Curtis

Saturday, September 10, 2005

College Friends

Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.
Professors describe you all as being in "lock-step for your major," and they match you assignment for assignment, class for class, photograph for photograph.

They become your surrogate family before they move on. They make you angry; they make you laugh. They let you down and lift you up. They hold you as you sob upon hearing the news that your father has been hospitalized and "it may have been a heart attack" and "I'm already fighting this-here suicidal depression and this is badbadbadbad." They leave all the kitchen cabinet doors open, and your hair in the drain drives them crazy.

After graduation, the letters become postcards, and the birthday gifts become Christmas cards and the long, wordy emails become text messages. Meeting for coffee and stopping by on New Year's Eve are all well and good, but sooner or later, the truth is... you've been apart longer than you were together.

And in the end, the friends who stood with you in the shadows of Stonehenge turn out to be the ones who outlast even the most promising of boyfriends, and there's no one better to say, "I remember who you were. I love who you're becoming, and you'll always be my friend."

Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.
They have to be. They know too much.

Friday, September 09, 2005

From a phone call the other night....

Gwen: OH MY G-D!
Me: I know.
Gwen: OH MY G-D.
Me: I'm terrified.
Gwen: Why is this scary? This isn't supposed to be scary.

Later in the same call...

Gwen: I'm glad you're happy.
Me: I'm glad *you're* happy.
Gwen: I'm glad we're both happy. When was the last time we were both happy at the same time?
Me: (deadpan) 1993.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Mission Accomplished

Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.
Well, I'm about to leave for the airport, but I'm taking advantage of the superfast Internet connection at Kelly and Michael's house to upload a few photos from the shower yesterday.

You can see a slideshow of the celebration by clicking here.

Michael's mom is very nice.

Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.


Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.

Gravy boats are good for licking.

Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.

Kelly and her Mom

Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.
This one is my favorite.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Operation Bridal Shower

At the moment, I'm sitting in Newark International Airport killing time until my flight to Ohio for Kel's shower. Oh yes, I am flying to Dayton with salad tongs and serving platters and wine corks and chilling buckets in my suitcase. (My socks are cushioning the flower vases.)

This has been a busy week with a business trip to Delaware a for follow-up story on a rape/homicide/arson investigation, a false alarm health scare in my family, repeated collect calls from a *different* inmate at the Chestwester County Prison, and of course, filling tiny plastic tubes with sea salt and peppercorns to give out as favors at the shower.

And, apparently I also procured myself a boyfriend. Go me. ;)

YMCA Jesus, here I come! There are going to be *so many* pictures with YMCA Jesus.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Yellow Eyebrows

My apartment takes up the whole third floor of the converted multi-family house I live in, but two families live in two separate apartments on the second floor.

Behind door #1: the outwardly sweet but increasingly sketchy couple who have a gorgeous 18-month-old toddler named Alicia who adores my pets. She loves Bella, whom she calls "Goggie," and aside from her attempts to eat the salty, disgusting tuna flavored Whiska Lickins' herself, also enjoys petting Fred and feeding him treats.

Behind door #2, the Vaquero family, including Aide (eye-DAY) , now 6, and Andrew, 13. I used to say that if Dora the Explorer were an actual child, she would be Aide Vaquero. (Except that Aide has grown about a foot and a half since they moved in two years ago, and actually I kind of think that Gaby reminds me more of Dora Incarnate now, which is neither here nor there. But I digress.).

Now Aide, on the other hand, adores Fred: "I wanna touch your kitty! Por favor!" But Bella scares the shit out of her. The people who lived in the apartment before the Vaqueros (Are you keeping track of all the tenants? There might be a quiz!) loved Bella. She used to go in there for tummy rubs sometimes, so after they moved out and the Vaqueros moved in, Bella would stand by their door and wait for the love when we came back from a walk, usually while I shoved four more quarters into the dryer on the second floor.

The first time Aide met Bella, my dog was right outside her family's door (while I was adding more quarters to the dryer) in the common hallway, which she wasn't expecting. She opened the door, saw the dog, screamed, and slammed the door so hard that a decorative plate fell off the wall in her apartment. She was 4 at the time, so the breaking plate really scared her, too. Of course, Bella barked when that happened, and Aide has been terrified of Bella ever since.

Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.
Anyway, last night I was doing laundry, and Fred ran down the stairs to rub his head lovingly against Andrew's bicycle on the landing. Aide came out when she heard me start the washer and asked to play with Fred. They were having a grand old time, what with the petting and feeding of the Whiska Lickins,' and she starts telling me that she's a big girl who's going to first grade next week, about a birthday party she went to at the American Girl store, and about her weekend trip to an amusement park "where she got her own Bella."

"My dad won me Bella!" She runs into the apartment and returns with an enormous stuffed dog that is quite clearly supposed to be a Rottweiler. "See?!? She has yellow eyebrows just like Bella!" Now, this giant prize dog is larger than my real-life dog. And it is absolutely ferocious. The stuffed dog has fangs made out of felt. Its fabric nose is sewn into a snarl. It is wearing a "spiked" collar made of pleather. It doesn't have drool made out of sequins or anything, but it might as well have. I checked.

I ooh and ahh over the stuffed animal and agree that Mr. Vaquero is an "awesome dad" for winning it for her. Aide runs back into her apartment to get something else to show me while I add the fabric softener. Now that my "big-boned" cat's source of kitty crack has lost interest, Fred wanders over to his lover, the bicycle, and rubs his head against the greasy chain while reciting a Shakespearean sonnet. Actually, Fred is really dumb. If he *could* talk, he would probably try to woo the bike with something a la Tarzan, like: "Me Fred. You Bike."

Originally uploaded by GypsyPeach.
Meanwhile, Aide comes back with the birthday party goodie bag, pulls out a notepad and tells me she's going to draw a picture of me.

"You have a big heart in this picture because you love your cat!" she said. I suppose it *is* vaguely heart-shaped, but really? My heart is big, black splotch, and THAT is awesome. I hung it on my fridge. I might frame it.