Saturday, July 25, 2009


Today we say goodbye to a pair of old friends--friends that have carried me, supported me, and made me look good in the clutch. My friends are tough and forgiving. They're never out of place. They also turn the bottoms of my feet black, which you'd think would have stopped by now.

I bought this pair of Reef skinny-strap flip-flops in May of 2001. I've worn them every day, March to November at least. They've been to Turkey, to Austria, to Croatia, to Slovenia, to Italy. They're bicoastal. They've been to Disneyland at least five times. I wear them with jeans and with shorts and with dresses and with my PJs. They get wet, they get dusty, and then they get muddy; they go through rivers and into lakes and along beaches. They have, due to some miracle and also to the strength of my toes, never been dropped off of a roller coaster and ended up on the roof of some amusement park outbuilding. They are magical flip-flops. Were I Jewish, I would consider nominating them for some kind of holiday: eight years from one year's worth of black foam! As it is, I'm thinking of having them bronzed.

Thanks for the memories, flops.

And to the new kids in town, welcome. You've got some big shoes to...

Never mind.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

12 of 12: July

12 of 12! 12 of 12! 12 of 12!

For more on this photographic phenomenon (sorry about that; it's late)--origins story, more entries, etc.--see Chad Darnell's blog. Until then, here we are.

8:51 - Up.

8:52 - You know how they say pets and pet owners begin to look alike...?

9:17 - Writing in bed. I've got friends visiting this week--lazy mornings let them sleep and give me some down time. And now you know my anti-social pretending-to-be-accommodating secret.

10:52 - Big trucks, puffy clouds, and overwhelming greenery: I-95 to Baltimore.

12:50 - Camden Yards before the Baltimore-Toronto game, our third major-league game this week (following Washington-Atlanta and Philadelphia-Cincinnati).

12:53 - Meet Paul and Alison, good friends to myself and also to baseball.

3:00 - The world's largest ballpark soft-serve, slightly licked. (The day was hot; the walk from the ice cream stand was long.)

4:31 - Root root rooting for the home team. It worked. Score: Baltimore 4, Toronto 2.

7:13 - I was in this entirely for the pineapple-jalapeno salsa, but the rest of it turned out to be spectacular as well. Well done, Surfside! Your yellow rice and lime sour cream are delicious!

8:08 - Hanging out on the roof deck at Surfside, waiting for the temperature to drop. At all.

9:15 - Packing my favorite very wrinkly sundress for a quick overnight to New York, so as to see Jon Stewart tape and possibly have other adventures with the friends.

10:32 - We come full circle.

Take me out to the ball game

I've been going to a lot of baseball games lately. My college roommate, Alison, is visiting, and one of Al's life goals is to attend at least one game in every major-league park in North America (awww, Toronto!). So far, this means that I may also be attending at least one game in every major-league park in North America. We visited my "hometown" Nationals on the Fourth of July and the Phillies last Wednesday, and we're hoping to work some magic, just by virtue of our presence, at the Orioles' game today. Also, to not exacerbate the sunburn situation.

One of my favorite things about major league baseball is the seventh-inning stretch. My muscles are a fan, of course, but mostly I just like that somebody took a look at baseball and said, "You know what this sport needs? More public singing!" And what do we do? Forty-five thousand, fifty thousand, sixty thousand people stand up in an enclosed space and sing a song about baseball. Loudly. In a not-very-convenient key.

I also approve of the 00s retro-modern trend in baseball: all these old-fashioned logos and fonts and multi-million-dollar (billion-dollar?) stadiums are killing me with how cute they are. To wit: Am I a Phillies fan? Not really. Do I see myself attending more Phillies games in the future? Barring some totally unexpected life change and my very own rowhouse in the Old City, the chances don't look good. Do I want one of those adorable, girly Phillies t-shirts with the little stars over the Is? LIKE YOU WOULD NOT BELIEVE. (And any team that does not wish to inspire this kind of association should probably stop dotting their Is with tiny stars, don't you think? It makes me think the guys on the team also pass notes in class, braid each other's hair, and use the term "MFEO" a lot.)

On the other hand, I would like to offer a short PSA to baseball players and those who dress them. Are you ready? Here we go: The new(-ish) long pants in baseball are appalling. Do not wear them. So baggy! So messy-looking! So unflattering! Why look like Barry Bonds in long pants when you can look like Curtis Granderson, my Detroit Tigers baseball boyfriend, with your socks up? I will never understand the shift. Please redress.

And also I like the game. With all the hitting and catching and and throwing. For reals.