This cracks me up. I love how the blog This is Indexed makes me think about concepts in terms of Xs and Ys.
Lizzie had a good suggestion to list the blogs I follow so here they are. I’ve excluded personal blogs since they are password-protected, private, or shared to me via email. But please feel free to note your own personal blog or the ones that you follow in the comment section.
Our final days in NYC were a good mix of hip, touristy, and gluttony! Bloodies, cocktails, wine–all the happy fluids I am temporarily abstaining from. 22 more days! Not that anyone is counting.
I picked out chocolates in Grand Central Station. I indulged on a trio of fatty goodness at Artisanal’s cheese bar. We were impressed by the decor at Buddakan. We finally found our way upstairs and through a back door to Angel’s Share. We braved the picture-happy crowds in Times Square for happy hour at R Lounge. And we truly squeezed ourselves into the closet of an East Village restaurant called Graffiti. I am a mini person and I was hyperventilating from the small space. To their credit, the Indian fusion food was outstanding, but please be on the lookout for a larger space!
My favorite is Bloglovin! I think it’s better than Google Reader. It’s got a pretty, clean interface. In fact, it looks a lot like my own! Once you sign up, you can follow all your favorite blogs, including mine Vixen Catherine Gacad. It’s really manageable. I have all the blogs I read in one place and it’s not overwhelming like Twitter can be. There’s probably no more than 10 new posts a day and I subscribe to 16 blogs.
It’s Money Monday and today I want to talk about fiscal betrayal. It’s a known fact that men lie about their height, women lie about their weight, and people lie about their finances. We all do. I do! When a potential employer asks how much you make, are you really going to tell them exactly how much you make? Of course not. You’re going to round up, way up. You’re going to add in your bonus, calculate your vacation time, your work from home flexibility, then add in a couple tens of thousands of dollars for good measure.
Similarly, we sometimes present a different picture to the outside world than what’s represented by our bank accounts. A poll commissioned by ForbesWoman and the National Endowment for Financial Education determined that over 30% of spouses lie about money. I’m sure that figure applies to single people, too. Men are constantly inflating their salaries (probably based on future expectations), and no single woman in her right mind is going to offer up that she’s on the partner track, clearing over $200k a year.
But we also lie to ourselves. This is why I need professional help. I should’ve hired a financial planner in my twenties. I’m only owning up to it now that I need a professional to review my complete financial picture and give me some much-needed advice. I’ve honed in on a female advisor who specializes in family planning. I’ve also found the NYTimes tools to be the most useful. Here’s one on Managing Your Money Through the Ages.
Although the weather wasn’t cooperating, the Carneros Vineyard Run is the funnest race I’ve run.
1. It’s in wine country and not in the downtown area, but in the backroads winding through crops of grapes.
2. It’s small. I heard talk that there were 700 registrants–500 of whom showed up in spite of the bad weather.
3. It’s short–choose a 5k or 10k.
4. Massages, pancake breakfast, and wine tasting after the run.
5. Awards (i.e., bottles of wine) are given to the top three placers in each age group, and overall.
6. Goody bag of T-shirts and souvenir wine glasses.
7. Raffled auction. Every participant gets one raffle ticket, plus you can purchase more.
8. The race benefits the Carneros Volunteer Fire Department.
Sitting on picnic tables inside a winery’s warehouse chowing down on pancakes with several hundred locals, I felt like I was in Smallville. Great community feel. I could see why people run the race year after year.
Finally, on a positive note, I finished 53rd overall in the 5k out of 255 runners. So top quartile ain’t too shabby.
For many years, I’ve extolled the concept of mind over matter. If you believe, it will happen. If you think, it will be. I’ve staked my running career on it. There isn’t a single race that I trained consistently for. I got bored, lazy, and [insert your adjective for lack of discipline here]. Come race days, I prayed I wouldn’t be the one to keel over on the side of the road and head to the finish line by way of ambulance. Fortunately, God heed my prayers and threw in quite a bit of endurance for good measure, because I always finished in surprisingly good time–especially for someone who hadn’t adequately prepared.
Today I surmised that God must have found favor with another neglectful runner. Unlike the Little Engine That Could, I very much could not! No matter how much I willed myself to press on, the gears would not go. I coughed, I clutched. I rubbed the nose dribble away. I swiped the rain drizzle from my forehead. Begone, oh thoughts of fatigue. It didn’t help that the last kilometer of the raise was straight up a hill. It didn’t help that everyone puttered to a bitter uphill stop. Eeeek, haaaa, eeeek, haaaa. For this morning’s race on a rainy gloomy day, I sucked air and hacked it out, drowning in personal disappointment.
Here’s a look at my walk-in closet. Sweaters, dresses, bangles, scarves. Stuffed with color–exactly the way I like it. The two paintings are from Shanghai. It’s too hard to see that the little girl has a knife in her hand ready to have herself some pork belly! And check out the orange pillbox with the Virgin Mary design. That’s where I keep the sleepy pills.
Adding on to my previous post, I encourage diversity and learning about different religions, geographies, and cultures. I think it’s debilitating to limit interactions to people who are similar. We all know people who only congregate in their own ethnic circles. All their friends are Asian. All their friends are Indian. I think that’s why we make fun of the Marina because everyone looks the same, talks the same. It’s not because the people who live in the Marina are snooty or because they act like they’re stumbling out of Sigma Alpha Epsilon. It’s because once you talk to one Marina inhabitor, you’ve talked to them all. Which is why people love the Mission—because you can bump into a musician, a cop, a writer, a massage therapist—all while having a few cocktails at the Elbo Room!
When I went to Cal for college, I saw it as my opportunity to expand my horizons beyond what I’d picked up at my 400-student Catholic high school. Sporadically I went to Filipino events, but I didn’t stake my social calendar around the Pilipino Posse. What were Filipinos at Cal going to teach me about my culture that I didn’t learn in my 18 years growing up in a strict immigrant household? Even now, I’ll encounter Filipinos who are surprised that we went to school at the same time, graduated the same year, yet they do not know me. Personally, I take that as a compliment.
I am very proud of the network I’m surrounded by—that my friends come from all religions, all ethnicities, sexual orientations…you name it. You can call me a diversity whore. But really, let’s assess. How am I enriching my life through my environment and the people I interact with?
Can you believe we’re already one-quarter into the year? Yikes! Soon enough, it will be time to get ready for Burning Man. As the Volunteer Coordinator for Burning Man’s ARTery group, I planned a social event last night at the Albatross, my favorite pub in the East Bay. The drinks are cheap, although cash only. The bar’s got darts, pool, and a whole mess of board games like Trivial Pursuit. We had a blast playing rounds and rounds of Uno. Good game for a big group.
I always leave these socials feeling so warmed by friendships with such a disparate group of people, unified by art and creativity. My connection to the ARTery is through a man who befriended me during a Burning Man open house. He’s Atheist and Communist. I am a practicing Catholic and a Capitalist. He stands for the exact opposite of my religious and political beliefs, yet I adore this man! He is one of the most self-less, grounded, and respectable people I know. I am all smiles when I talk about him. Our beliefs are merely differences of opinion. Moreover, his beliefs are based on a great deal of thought, debate, discussions, and compassion. Yeah, the Bible says some unfortunate things. I don’t take them literally, but many religious zealots do—so I understand the backlash against religion and where he’s coming from.
All of these principles and beliefs are left behind when challenging another to Connect Four. It’s like going back several decades and playing in a sandbox.