the original kStyle blog.

Friday, April 28, 2006

OTC Cocktail

Because tree sex makes my head feel like an aquarium (one pauses to wonder whether human copulation vexes the trees), I've found myself mixing an elaborate concoction.

3:30 AM: one 24-hour Claritin
9 AM: Claritin seems not to have done much. Add 1/2 Chlor-trimeton pill.
9:15 AM: Headache unbearable. Add 1 ibuprophen.
9:30 AM: feeling clearer, but groggy from Chlor-rimeton. Drink dark tea.

Repeat as needed.

Poor liver.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Discussion Question

Cell phones: Scourge on society, or merely the latest vehicle for rudeness?

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Further Q.O.L. Musings

Some ways in which my life situtation has greatly improved over the last 5 years:

1. Foremost, no more crazy roommates! Instead, I get to live with 1 human I very much love and two delightful felines.
2. Better health. No longer the constant sinus and ear infections.
3. Gym membership.
4. A liveable salary.
5. Organic CSA food all summer.

Some ways in which I hope my life will become even better over the next 5 years:

1. Owning a stand alone home, especially because that will mean
2. No more noisy neighbors directly above our heads, driving us insane. The 50 Brazilians are being VERY BAD tonight.
3. Full-time shiatsu career.
4. More money when G. finishes his PhD, and therefore
5. More traveling.
6. New car.
7. Dare I dream?...Maybe even...a washer and dryer that are not operated by coins. Gasp!

And, in an absolutely perfect world:

1. Scientists discover that malted milk balls are good for you, especially in large quantities.
2. Better yet, elevated malted milk ball consumption counteracts even the most severe hayfever.
3. No more war, hunger, or strife.

At least I'm not one of those poor suckers

When my Day Job is irritating, I take stock of all the jobs I could be doing, to which I prefer my own work. I feel like I might have posted about this before, as I often take stock of careers that would be much worse, but clearly, it's still relevant and therefore bears repeating. Those jobs include:

*sewage sanitation
*dental hygienist (scraping plaque all day! the horrors!)
*eye surgeon
*combat military
*coal miner
*deep sea fisher
*news reporter (too much bad news)
*celebrity hanger-on
*other surgeon
*medical doctor, other than dermatologist or psychiatrist, which I'm pretty sure I'd enjoy
*funeral director/embalmer
*sales (though I think I'd enjoy marketing)
*mathematician or physicist
*homeless shelter supervisor (one year of that is plenty for a lifetime or so)
*cow inseminator


*Factory worker
*Hotel cleaning service (I don't think I'd mind doing a home cleaning service, at least for a while)
*Anything involving spittle or urine

I think that you could learn a lot about a person by the jobs that come to mind as the Worst Things she could do. Most of mine seem to involve some sort of bodily fluid or general ooze.

Update 2:

Writing this list has caused me to realize something. There are many, many jobs I wouldn't object to doing for a limited time period, provided I knew when the end date would be. Pumping gas, retail, the so-called menial jobs--I could see doing these things for a small amount of time. And the problem with my current job, more than the job itself, is that I have no idea when it will end! If a seer or angel or Supreme Being handed me a scroll--I envision it as being aflame but cool to the touch, never burning or disintegrating--and the scroll said, kStyle, Be It Known, Ye Shall Leave the Publishing House on [fill in date known only to a godlike being], and Yea, Then Ye Shall BE Absolved from All Such Worke, I'd be like, cool, and enjoy my job more.

the two certainties

1. Write your own epitaph.

2a. Choose your next incarnation.

2b. Okay, but what do you really think you'd come back as? Why?

3. How was your tax refund this year?

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Restlessness, Toyota, and Our Fine Neighbor to the South

One minute, all my documents listed "C." as my middle initital; the next, they mysteriously changed to read "R." "R" for Restless. Yes, work has me trapped, and upcoming nuptials dictate my free time, leaving little space for my shiatsu practice to grow. I can't grow the practice without time, but I don't have free time, because I have to work. Meanwhile, my '96 vehicle grows softer and softer, a little less tight, its paint a little more (unevenly) faded, each day. It's not paid off yet, either.

And so, unable to travel until after said nuptials (July), I've channeled all my energy into obsessively watching DVDs of "Rick Steves' Europe" checked out from the library, coveting a new car, and baking. And Lo, Toyota built a brand-new model I could actually sort of afford, even though I'm engaged to a graduate student and hoping to quit my job in favor of a fancy-free shiatsu career as soon as humanly possible (which feels like at least a decade away).

Today I took a test drive in the Yaris sedan, an attractive little car with great gas mileage and working air conditioning. (My current auto has theoretical A/C.) I fell rather in love with the peppy little vehicle. Its red paint was uniformly deep and shiny! There's no need to plan out braking well in advance! Its engine is so quiet!

Back at the dealership, we calculated that with $2000 down, the car payments would cost about $280 a month. This seemed reasonable, but I needed to think about it. On the third attempt, we extracted ourselves from the helpful grip of our salesman and headed home.

While my cardamom cake baked and I drowsily watched Rick Steves tour Bulgaria, cat asleep across my legs, I turned over the question of the car. The timer dinged, and G. joined me on the couch for Rick's tour of Turkey and some unbelievably fluffy cake. (Who knew you could make a cake with yeast?)

The Turkish people got around in wooden carts pulled by pathetically skinny horses. Fueled by cake and inspired by Rick, my brain drew up and image of my friend Nicole. Nicole and I once discussed the silliness of expensive engagement rings. She said, "I measure the value of items in terms of trips to Italy. Is a big diamond really worth several trips to Italy? I'd rather have an inexpensive ring and a proposal in Florence."

I sat down with my calculator. Although the Yaris is relatively inexpensive, it would cost 1.5 trips to Mexico annually. (Two trips if we stayed at G's uncle's house in San Miguel.)

I made G. promise we'd go to Mexico in the winter, and promised myself to splurge on painting my own car.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Ephemeral Spring Things


please add more...

Tuesday, April 18, 2006


I'd sensed I was very close. I'd applied on a whim, and then when it became more tangible--an interview!--I let my hopes get up. I daydreamed. I consoled myself at minor irritations with the idea that I'd been elsewhere soon, anyway. And then a very polite email came:

Although your experience and accomplishments are excellent, we are
continuing our search to fill the position with another candidate whose
experience and background will be better matched to our current needs.
But my background is a perfect match, so I thought. I'm more irrationally upset than I should be. It's frustrating. I feel like I'm going to be stuck where I am for the rest of my life.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Monday Questionnaire
"It isn't narcissism if kStyle isn't writing this" edition

1. Where are you, usually, when you're reading Float?

2. How many times a day do you check Float?

3. What is the most helpful thing you have learned on Float? (Or: share a happy Float memory.)

Sunday, April 16, 2006

So this is Easter
and what have you done?

Easter has lost a little pizzaz since I abandoned the Catholic faith 8 years ago. The problem with my eclectic-mostly-Buddhist spirituality is the lack of big festival days. I'm sure there must be big Buddhist feasts (vegetarian, of course) in Asia, but not so here in the US of A (and we'd like meat, thanks). My spirituality is probably closest to UU, but let's face it, the UU's are not known for their fantastic, ritualized celebrations. Sure, they make up interfaith rituals as they go, but they feel a little watered down. I want to choke on incense and get chills from chanting. Greece did Easter really well. I thought my hair might catch on fire from everyone milling about with candles. Then they had fireworks all over Athens. It was great.

Note to self: create new church before next Easter.

Moving on, I'm thrilled that I've gotten out of the family Easter celebration this year. I've been driving down there every other weekend for wedding crap. Not today! I have no shiatsu clients, either, because everyone's too busy eating colored eggs! Here's what I plan to do:

  1. Finish blog post.
  2. Run around at gym to burn some energy from the pastel-candy-coated malt balls I ate for breakfast. (Church ritual might pass away, but candy ritual shall never die.)
  3. Pick up more yeast and eggs at the store. Get G. some cheese as a surprise Easter gift. The boy loves his cheese.
  4. Come home. Shower.
  5. Start sandwich bread.
  6. Leave it to rise and drag G. out for a walk at the Arboretum, where the magnolia trees have been threatening to bloom.
  7. Existential crisis.
  8. More candy.
  9. Finish bread.
Yay! Happy Easter/Passover/Spring Holiday, everyone!

PS I just found evidence for my sneaking suspicion that Buddhist holidays are kind of a drag. I'd like to be a better Buddhist, but the practice is just so depressingly ascetic.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

I admit it!

I'm having lots of fun registering for wedding gifts. At first I felt guilty/greedy at the propect, but then I remembered that people want to give wedding gifts and this makes the process easier for many of them. Would you like to see what good taste I have? Here are a few examples.

Casual china.
Pretty! Elegant! We found this for sale half-off at an online wholesaler and registered there, but I linked to Macy*s so you could see the picture.

More-formal china. Double pretty! Also found this at the half-off wholesaler. Look at us, even bargain shopping for gifts.

And this morning, I went to Amazon and registered for 6 cookbooks I've always dreamed about, but never could justify purchasing. See, I've always dreamed of whipping up fabulous breads from scratch. Because my hot cross buns (see previous post) turned out heavenly, I'm feeling optimistic and inspired.

Friday, April 14, 2006

The Macy*s Parade

While I'm mentally writing bigger and better posts, which may or may not ever make it onto ye olde blogge, I'll share an unfortunate confluence of events. I came home from work very hungry and tired and, to my shame, made frozen pizza for dinner. It was extra-super-salty, but filling and comforting in that crappy-fatty-food way. I drank a beer with it. The beer was much better than the actual pizza, some English pale ale or another. (G eats frozen pizza about weekly; I seldom join him in it.)

Naturally, this "dinner" left me very thirsty, so I drank a lot of water. I started filling up like a water balloon--the salt made me bloat. I began work on the dough for the hot cross buns I'd been planning to make. By the time I finished and cleaned up, leaving the dough in the fridge to rise slowly, it was about ten o'clock, I was very tired, and it was time to take my birth control pill. I popped in a No-Babies Pill and an allergy pill, then got ready for bed. After showering--and noting that I'd grown about as wide as a Mac truck since morning--I couldn't remember whether I'd taken my birth control. I went to check the pack, and discovered I'd taken two birth control pills. Had I taken an allergy med at all? I'll never know for sure, but I do know that birth control, unlike antihistamines, can be extremely bloating. I rolled into bed a la Violet Beauregard and fell asleep, watery and huge.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Monday Questionnaire
Old habits die hard edition

1. What bad habit have you recently broken?

2. What bad habit do you refuse to break?

3. Of what bad habit would you like to break someone else?

Sunday, April 09, 2006

My Life Is Too Crowded

Here's what it's like. I work very hard at a tiring, demanding job (that I don't particularly like in the first place) Monday through Friday. On Saturday, I run all over Blue State doing wedding errands. On Sunday, I treat shiatsu clients and often do more wedding stuff. Let's look more closely at this week.

Sunday: Treat shiatsu client. Run to a place an hour away to spend the whole afternoon looking for suits for the men in the wedding. All this on one fewer hour of sleep.

Monday: Work sucks. Come home, do 2 loads of laundry. Make dinner.

Tuesday: Work sucks. Come home, give the condo an overdue scrubbing (it was approaching uninhabitable) and do another load of laundry. Make dinner. Work on wedding registry, which is actually kind of fun.

Wednesday: Work sucks. Go to yoga class. Come home exhausted, watch Top Model.

Thursday: Work really, really, really sucks, such that I almost start crying while there. Come home exhausted, but planning to go to a new local spa's open house as a shiatsu practice-building measure. Break out into exhausted tears, and blubber all night instead of going to open house. Attempt to calm myself doing my favorite yoga DVD, but find it doesn't help. Turn it off after 20 minutes.

Friday: Work sucks a little less. Go for acupuncture after work. Come home more relaxed but nauseated because I'm over-hungry. G drags me out for meal. I recover a little.

Saturday: Get up early and drive Far Away to meet with potential officiant. Meeting goes well. We grab lunch out, stop by G's mom's house and take a nap. Drive the two hours back home. Once home, I am good for nothing. I sit on my butt for the whole night.

Today, Sunday: I'll teach my morning qigong, and then I have 3 shiatsu clients today. No rest for the weary.

When did life stop being fun?

Myth Busters

Myth: "You can see that [baby name] has the [mother's surname] [facial feature] and the [father's surname] [facial feature].

Fact: Babies all look alike. They look like babies. They have ridiculously large heads (usually bald), giant eyes, eerily translucent skin, fat legs, and the same shape nose, all of them. If babies looked distinct from one another, they would not be mixed up in hospitals.

Myth: kStyle is getting married; therefore she'll settle down*.

Fact: kStyle herself isn't particularly fond of babies or small children.

Myth: It's different when you have your own kids! kStyle will make a great mom.

Fact: If kStyle has kids at all, she is likely to adopt eight-year-olds, because she does not really like children under the age of eight.

Myth: Older children are already too messed up and shouldn't be adopted.

Fact: That's just a sad way of looking at the world. Although some emotional scarring is to be expected, with a good counselor, a good mentor, and lots of love, an older child could be just fine. Not that kStyle necessarily wants kids anyway.

*Settle down is code for "pop out babies".

Monday, April 03, 2006

Monday Questionnaire
Some attempt at regularity

1. Do you have a morning routine? What's it like?

2. What are you eating for lunch today?

3. What do you like and dislike about the Spring?