Tag Archives: observations

Three on Thursday: Random Nuggets

30 May

Because I’ve been pressed for time, there’s no cohesive post to serve up, so I’ll invoke the “Three on Thursday” theme and just share three completely random things with you.

Image Source: http://www.foodfash.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/IMG_5810.jpgItem #1

Alan and I swung in Trader Joe’s to pick up some items for dinner. To save time, we decided to divide and conquer: I scouted the wine; he was in charge of meat/grains/veggies. (Yes, I totally realize I won that coin toss.)

After executing my half of the task, I started walking the aisles, looking to intercept him before checkout. I found him reading a package. He flipped it around to show it to me with a questioning look. I squinted. “Why are you looking at BIRDSEED?” I asked, thoroughly confused.

He did a double-take to see if I was joking. I was not. Then he laughed. “This is quinoa.”

Oh. Somehow, even though I cook a lot and have eaten quinoa from the Whole Foods buffet bar, I have never actually prepared it. I hadn’t realized it looked like bird seed. That explains a LOT. Like why I find myself instinctively ingesting pebbles after a big plate of quinoa.

I can answer at least one of these questions for her.

I can answer at least one of these questions for her.

Item #2

As it turns out, humans are pretty decent conductors. I don’t mean train conductors  – hello, have you even looked at a newspaper this month? – but rather, conductors of electricity.

I know this because last week I kind of electrocuted myself. My AC was on the fritz, so at 6pm on Friday I found myself standing on a plastic storage bin on top of a table so I could see into space above my ceiling where my AC unit lives. I quickly found the source of the problem – the condensation tray had water pooling in it, which had tripped the reset button for the unit.

The first time I checked things out, I did the prudent thing and climbed down, flipped the breaker, then went back up on the table. But the second time? When I thought I’d solved the problem and mopped up the water? I did a quick final check with the power on to make sure all was good.

And when I grabbed the hockey-puck like water sensor, a volt ran up my arm as far as my shoulder, causing a phantom tingle that lasted for an hour. (I would like to point out that I did NOT get blown off the table I was standing on, so it probably wasn’t really that bad. I mean, it wasn’t one of these scenarios. Just a bit tingly. In other words, I don’t need a lecture, Mom and Dad.)

In other news: Time to buy a ladder!

Item #3

I attended a videocast earlier this week. It was a pretty basic set-up, where a moderator and her guest were seated side-by-side at a table. The guest was some guy who has written a book about social media marketing.

He started the talk by providing a four-minute synopsis of the book. It was mesmerizing. Not because of anything he said (I couldn’t even tell you one concept from his book that made an impression on me), but because of how he said it. He smiled the entire time he spoke.

As I sat there, transfixed, I realized: People who smile-talk? Generally look like they’re silently filling a Depends while conversing. Seriously.

Sure, there are exceptions. They’re called “news anchors.” But the rest of us, whose worlds don’t revolve around teleprompters, should probably ditch the smile when delivering. Also? In looking for an image for this post, I googled “awkwardly smiling while talking” and it took me to this eHow article.

Seriously? Someone took the time to write that?

It’s already paid for itself and we haven’t even planted it.

16 Jun

One of my colleagues received a George Washington Chia Head as a gift for Christmas. It has been sitting in a box on his desk for months, begging to be re-gifted. After a glass of work-place wine, we all decided to open the box and get the Office Chia started.

I’ve never owned a Chia Pet before, so I’m absurdly excited. When I saw its claim that it will be fully-grown in two weeks, I made a bold decision:

“You know the guy who took his own picture every day for eight years?” I asked.

My colleagues nodded. “Well, get ready to give it a run for its money. Because we will take a picture of Chia George every day until it’s fully grown. Except on weekends.”

I could tell they were pretty impressed with my commitment to the project, based on the silence that followed.

Or maybe they were just thinking, “But then we’ll have to watch our chia start young and awkward, have a brief hottie period, then end up looking like a bike courier who refuses to groom himself.”

Or maybe that’s just my take on the photo guy.

Regardless, upon examining the contents of the box, my excitement was dashed. No one warned me that there would be PAPERWORK involved! Ack!

Apparently, it’s important to register your Chia. (Because someone might steal it? Not sure.)

Here’s a photo of the form:

Paperwork like this is why I've never adopted a baby.

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My nephew is a tough critic.

13 Apr

My sister and her family came out to visit last week since it was Spring Break in Michigan. Sadly, DC didn’t deliver its usual dose of spring beauty – it was unseasonably cool (high of 50!) and rainy while they were here. Bummer.

The trip did allow for a revelation: I decided my youngest nephew (now eight years-old) should host a reality show. He’s cut from the cloth of Simon Cowell.

It was his first time visiting my new place, so he paced around inspecting it. “This is really nice,” he pronounced. “But you know what you need? You need a 48″ flatscreen right above your fireplace. That would make it better.”

“Nah,” I told him. “Televisions are for boring people who can’t entertain themselves.”

He considered that. “Not really. You could also use it to play Wii, and you can learn a lot from a Wii.” Noted.

The next morning I was sitting in the living room working on my laptop. “You’re boring,” he said. “All you do is sleep and work on your computer. You even have your groceries delivered. Do you ever leave your house?”

Ironically, I generally walk about 25 miles per week, but I didn’t bother to correct him. “Not really,” I said.

“Never?” he asked.

“Have you seen me leave?” I pushed.

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