Thursday, June 30, 2005

...With A Little Help From My Friends

Think back to elementary school. What do you remember? Playing with friends on the playground, of course! Think back to when you were a bit older in high school. What do you remember? Riding around with friends, of course! College? Navigating the new murky waters of the adult world with friends, of course!

School is a ready-made place for friends. You bond together in grades K-12 because you're forced to be at one place for seven hours a day, so you might as well make the best of it. The transition from high school to college can be difficult because you step into an entirely new world, and the friendships you've spent your entire life building are infringed upon. You still retain some of the old friends, but you make new friends as well. Then, these new people become some of your closest friends.

Then, you leave college and you have to do the friend thing all over again. There are so many roads people take at this point. For me, I moved to DC, which was like College Part Two. Many people were my age and new to DC, so it wasn't too difficult to meet people. Luckily, I had a great friend from when I interned there the summer before, so the transition wasn't nearly as difficult as it could've been.

I also have many friends that moved to the same town after college, making their social life ready-made. But what about those of us that take the plunge and move off somewhere? What do we do?

After getting married about 11 months ago, Bert and I moved to a place where we didn't know a soul. We certainly have enjoyed our time together, but both started missing some of the friendships we'd left behind. Slowly we started meeting people. Of all things, our closest friends here are moving to DC.

This has me thinking: why do adults still have a deep need for friendship?

Here are some of my answers:
  • Who do you marry? Your best friend! The closest friend of your life becomes your family. This certainly shows the power and importance of friendship.
  • People are social creatures. We like to be around other people. People have a need for inclusion, and friendship provides this. This is why I think we have inside jokes with our friends. It's a secret code between friends, and bonds them for life.
  • Friends and family don't have the same emotional attachment to us. You can do something that would be devestating in your parent's eyes, but friends won't feel this level of emotion about what you've done. They don't have to practice tough love. They can just be there for you.
  • People like to be around others in similar situations. Young married couples like to be around other young married couples because they relate to each other so well. We like to be around people in similar phases of life because our interests are compatible.
  • We choose our friends. You are born into a family, but you pick all your friends.

Friends are present in every stage of our life, serving different purposes. From the friend we used to play hopscotch with on the playground...to the friend who handed us tissues after we were rejected by a crush... to the friend that sent a "congratulations on your new job card," friends really are something special. I don't know any girl that would ever outgrow enjoying chatting on the phone with an old friend about their college days or talking to a new friend about meeting downtown for lunch. And I don't know any guy that wouldn't like to meet his childhood best friend for a beer to talk about everything "back home" or go play golf with a new friend.

So, here's to you, friends old and new. Here's to you.

posted by Anisa @ 1:40 PM | 13 comments


Wednesday, June 29, 2005

A New Diagnosis

I beg all of you: stay as far away from http://www.webmd.com as possible. WebMd is an web site that will convince you that you are dying. No really, I'm not kidding! Due to WebMd, I have thought I had a brain tumor, as well as ovarian cancer. However, after a cat scan and an ultrasound, I was assured I had in the first case a pretty bad sinus infection, and in the second case acid reflux.

WebMD will make you think if you have a headache, you could have a tumor! Or brain cancer! Or some rare disease! Achy tummy? You could have all sorts of cancers or gastrointestinal disorders. And fatigue? You could have everything. Stay off the internet when looking up your symptoms! Just go to the doctor. I have found this is absolutely the best way to go about things. If you do have something, they'll tell you. And most likely, they'll write a prescription for antibiotics for whatever infection you have. It'll clear up, and your life will go on. Save yourself the stress of WebMd.

I'm really not a hypochondriac...I just get worried. I know the chances of me having something terrible are really low, but my mind still wonders...what if? What if I'm the .002% that gets this? I don't invent not feeling good, but I am bad about jumping to conclusions. I don't need lots of medicine. I just get worried.

I think I realized I was getting out of hand when someone was describing their symptoms on television...upset stomach, fatigue, etc. I knew I had whatever they were talking about. I was convinced!

They had prostate cancer.

So, after that, I tried to realize I was probably OK. I tried to stay much calmer. It worked for about a month, and then I got on WebMD. Now I know freak things do happen, but checking every single headache on the WebMD search engine is not the smartest way to go about things. You'll give yourself a migraine.

I guess if I'm meant to have something, I'll get it. Most likely, things aren't serious. Sometimes they are, but our fate will catch us eventually and there's not a whole lot we can do. My new diagnosis for ailments is to stay off medical internet sites. The end of this life's journey will come to us all, but I choose not to speed it up by stressing myself out on WebMD.
posted by Anisa @ 1:05 PM | 11 comments


Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Change the Channel!

When I lived in DC, I was submerged in the news. I was completely up-to-date on politics, and even knew about Trent Lott stepping down all of 5 seconds before he announced it on CNN. I knew what was going on in DC, Mississippi and the world. I would read my daily updates from CNN to make sure I didn't miss anything, and I would go through "The Washington Post" and make myself read "real news" before I would read my horoscope.

After I moved, I didn't watch news at all anymore. I was burned out and exhausted. I didn't want to know what was going on with the economy, Iraq, healthcare or anything else that was depressing. As you all know, I love celeb gossip, so I kicked that interest into high gear. After Bert and I got married, I watched ESPN's "Around the Horn" and "PTI" with intense fervor. Jay and Woody became my old James and Tucker. No longer a devoted fan of the now-defunct "Crossfire", I had more important things that deserved my attention. During football season, I needed hourly updates on the condition of TO. Would he play in the Super Bowl? Was he OK?

Everything comes full circle, so today, I clicked on those CNN updates like I used to do so long ago. People were killed in suicide bombings. A serial killer pleaded guilty. The Ten Commandments can't be displayed in courthouses. Mad cow disease was found in American cows.

Reading through these, I realized why I decided to focus my attention on other topics. The news is depressing. Other than the Ten Commandments verdict, everything else was about people killing other people or a disease that can have deadly effects. What else do you see when you turn on the news? Natalee is still missing in Aruba. There was a freak shark attack in Destin, FL. Tom Cruise is running his mouth trying to convince people the use of psychiatric medication and therapy is irresponsible. Sheesh.

I guess a bright spot was the little Boy Scout that survived after being lost in the woods. Other than that, the President's trying to bolster support for a war no one fully understands. American troops in Iraq that were training the new Iraqi army overheard the soldiers singing Saddam's praises. Tell me again why we spent all this money and all these people are dead...

I know it's responsible to know what's going on in the world. That's why I used to trust Headline News. However, if I have to hear Nancy Grace spew garbage one more time, I'm giving up on the network. I just wanted the headlines. I want to find a balance between knowing what's going on and becoming submerged in the depressing news of the day.

Till I find that medium, I'll flip between E!, ESPN and Headline News so I can get a dose of it all. I'll rely on word-of-mouth from friends and family. And when it becomes too much, I can always put on any movie from my collection of DVDs, sit back, relax and have everything be all right with the world for at least two hours.
posted by Anisa @ 1:00 PM | 3 comments


Monday, June 27, 2005

Anarchy In Middle America

Last night, Bert and I went to see Shawn Mullins live at an outdoor concert. I absolutely love, love to see live music. There’s just something about seeing someone there on stage, really feeling the music. They’re off the radio and standing in front of you in an old t-shirt with their eyes closed and you feel more connected to music than ever before.

Bert and I had a wonderful seat in the second row. There were probably about a thousand people there, but most of the others were more interested in the Budweiser tent several feet from the stage. That left us with two seats to the left of a sycamore tree, very close to the stage. I laid my head on Bert’s shoulder, and as I looked up at him, it looked almost like a picture with the tree and the blue sky in the background.

And then I saw it.

You know what I’m talking about. It's our fellow human beings...the people of middle America. Concerts are the perfect place for people-watching. We noticed many people…the groupies, the homeless people…before the show really got started. As we took our seats, we almost immediately began to notice many others. One of the most memorable was Art Garfunkel, from Simon & Garfunkel, and Sweatband Girl, who were completely oblivious to the other people at the concert. When people have seats, what makes other people think they can just go and stand right in front of them? It makes no sense to me. However, what made less sense than that was the fact that the girl had a giant light blue sweatband pushed up around her left bicep and a small white one around her right wrist. After jamming with Art and discussing the benefits of organic lemonade, she switched the sweatbands around. They continued to smoke cigarettes like they were their life source and downed the organic drinks. Then they left. Then they came back. Art looked mad.

Of course there was a group of giddy high school girls. It made me shudder to think I used to bear any resemblance to these girls who practically attacked their friends with shrieks and hugs. You know what I’m talking about. It’s the group of girls who are desperately trying to pass for college freshman, and they’re present in any College Town USA. They have assembled their cutest outfits and thrown a fake Chanel purse over their shoulders. They walk around, their leader stopping to say many hellos along the way. They scream and hug a lot. Everyone around them is thoroughly annoyed at them, but all they can think about is how cool they are to be at a concert. Even if they choose to wear a normal bra with a spaghetti strap shirt, they think they look fabulous. They are having the time of their lives.

The girls stood close to the stage, only feet from their complete opposite, Anarchy Boy. This guy with his mom was in junior high and dressed in all black. He had on baggy cargo pants and a shirt with the name of a band that spelled their name using the Anarchy "A." When they played CDs before Shawn Mullins came out, Anarchy Boy knew every word to all the “angry” songs. However, after Shawn came out, he was dreadfully bored, happy only for the 5 minutes he had a fresh order of large cheese fries.

Then, of course, there was the family that the mom was trying to be cool and sing along to every Shawn Mullins song. She was wearing a low-cut pink top and her daughter looked mortified most of the time. Dad eventually came to join them, and he looked perfectly normal and like a banker except for his large Sponge Bob Square Pants tie. Dad and Daughter took a seat, while Mom stayed true to her groupie roots, dancing and singing while standing. She would make her mouth vibrate like Whitney Houston does during “I Will Always Love You.” Daughter looked at Mom. Mom gave daughter the peace sign. Daughter looked like she wanted to crawl under the stage and hide.

I will say, though, that the person I think took the cake was Sugar Daddy. Nope, I’m not talking about an old man with a young little trophy blonde by his side. I’m talking about a guy in blue and white striped overalls with a short-sleeved button up shirt that bore the Sugar Daddies logo. He sure must love that candy. As I opened my mouth to point out Sugar Daddy, Bert said, "I know, and no, I don't have an explanation." We sure got a kick out of that one.

I leaned back in my chair, my head on Bert’s shoulder. I looked around at all the people we had noticed, and how most of them looked like they were having a wonderful time, lost in their own worlds. I had a big smile on my face, and thought about how Shawn Mullins summed it all up in his first song: “It’s just life…it’s just life.” And I am so glad to be out there living it.
posted by Anisa @ 2:15 PM | 2 comments


Friday, June 24, 2005

I'll Never...Nevermind...

I'm extremely burned from the tanning bed. I know, I know...it's terrible to go, so dangerous, etc. etc. Anyway, I went. I was a little proud of myself because it's the first time I've gone in almost a year. I try to go as little as possible, but yes, I do like to have a little extra color for the summer. Being half Indian, I figured that I wouldn't burn too badly since I'd already laid out twice. Boy was I wrong. I went Monday and I can finally stand for my back to be touched today.

You can guess the things I've been saying since Monday: "I will never go to the tanning bed again!" and "I'm on tanning bed retirement - permanently!!" However, why is it in our human nature to forget how we felt at one time and make the same mistake over and over again?

I'm sure I'll visit a tanning bed again in my life. Will I stay the full 20 minutes on day one? I sure hope I'll remember not to do that...

Think about it. We've all sworn, "I'll never drink that again!" or "I will never eat more than 3 pieces of Papa John's again - ever!!"

And there we go...cramming Papa John's down our throats, having another stomach ache.

I have told myself I'll never be late to work again. Have I been late again? Yep. I have sworn I'll never shave without shaving cream again. Did I? Um, this morning. I have decided not to eat after 7 pm, etc. etc. I swore I'd never lose my temper again, and then it manages to rear its ugly head. I have decided I will walk away from now on when a situation escalates, rather than making a fool of myself.

It's just like with New Year's Resolutions...as time passes, we get stuck in our same old routines again. I am proud that I actually stuck to my working out resolution this year! That one was so much easier, though, because Bert and I made the same commitment, so we keep each other going.

It's the same way with childbirth. You hear new moms say that the pain was so incredible that they'll never put themselves through nine months of agony coupled with the horror known as childbirth. Three years later, though, Child #1 is welcoming Baby Brother or Baby Sister.

Maybe it's a good thing we can forget how we feel at certain times, otherwise, how would we forgive and forget? Time really does heal all wounds, in my opinion. If you put enough hours between yourself and an incident, you will forget the true emotions you felt at that time. That can be good with forgiveness, or it can be bad with dedication and commitment.

Even if I mess up, I still pick myself back up and try to start over again. I'll try to be on time to work every day next week. I won't let little things get to me. Eating after 7? Yeah, I'm sure I'll do that. Go to the tanning bed? Hopefully not.

Life is a learning process, and luckily, we don't have to be perfect. Human beings are resilient, and we can always try again and start over. And if you're really lucky, someone will be there to lend you a hand. In my case, that certainly came in handy to have help rubbing Aloe Vera gel on my very hot pink back!
posted by Anisa @ 1:00 PM | 8 comments


Thursday, June 23, 2005

Reality TV Sleaze

I've had a drought recently in shows I really like to watch, so when the new season of MTV's "The Real World" began, I was very excited. I was going to be out when the show premiered, so Bert set the VCR to record it, and off we went.

When we returned home, I could hardly wait to watch the show. I thought back to last season and how much I enjoyed the Philadelphia cast. I put on my jammies and snuggled under the covers. Bert rewound the tape and pressed play.

You would think the reality show that started all reality shows would be the creme de la creme. Not so much.

I am not entirely sure why the producers want to make it plainly obvious that this particular show is anything but reality. For those of us that watch reality TV, we've heard all the speculation and accusation that there is very little reality to it at all. Usually, though, shows that make it big in the ratings add just the right amount of drama i.e. catfights, hook-ups, etc. to make it possibly believable.

At least I hope some of "The Real World: Austin" premiere was made up.

Consider this: you've just moved into a house with 6 strangers. You know your every move is going to be recorded for the next few months. You're going to be on television. Your grandmother is going to see what happened. Wouldn't you try and act like a decent human being?

Furthermore, would you try and get in arguments with your new roomies before you even hit the 48-hour mark? Doubtful. I was about to rip my hair out at one particular scenario of this show. Here's the condensed version: Johanna (Jo) and Nehemiah had already bonded by hour 24. Jo asked Nehemiah to not let her drink too much. When the whole gang hits the bar that night, Jo gets too intoxicated and Nehemiah brings her over a glass of water. He doesn't make a big deal out of it whatsoever. Jo goes ballistic and throws a fit. Nehemiah tries to walk away, but Jo keeps trying to grab him. She's acting insane. Nehemiah then leaves the bar because he doesn't want to deal with Jo's craziness. In her intoxication, Jo tells the others that Nehemiah got in a fight with some guy. How she came up with this, I have no idea. Wes and Danny try and go find Nehemiah. On the way, some guy punches Danny and his eye becomes swollen shut. Why Danny got punched, I have no idea. All I know is that people tend to terrorize "Real World" cast. Anyway, Danny gets home and sees Nehemiah. He tells him it's all his fault he got punched in the eye.

What? I just wanted to jump in the TV and start yelling at Danny.

That's what I'm talking about...who acts like that? And especially, who acts like that on television?

I'm not sure, but you can believe I'll catch every episode. Why? Because everything else is re-runs! I'm beginning to feel a little sorry for actors, with the plethora of reality shows popping up daily. It's no wonder there are so many out of work actors. Really, though, is "The Real World" any more reality than "Sex and the City"? I guess we'll never really know.

In the meantime, you may want to catch the show Tuesday nights on MTV. There is a huge upside to tuning in: your life will seem completely together after you watch one episode of this show, no matter what is going on. Nothing like a little free therapy on cable TV.
posted by Anisa @ 12:35 PM | 6 comments


Wednesday, June 22, 2005

A Birthday Retrospective

Ah, it's finally here...the day of Anisa! I love my birthday, and already have on a cute new shirt in my favorite shade of pink from Bert. The new Guster CD is on and keeping me great company from my sister. A gorgeous arrangement of flowers in hues of red, yellow and purple from my parents sit on my desk and brighten the entire office.

I did my yearly ritual of checking my horoscope on washingtonpost.com for the next year. Luckily, it says I will make a lot of money (oh please, oh please!) and have stellar love with an Aries (that would be Bert).

Twenty-five years ago at this time, I hadn't actually arrived. Nope, the five pounds eleven ounces of me would be born after 3pm, CST. All of a sudden, two people had a daughter and I had parents. My dad said I was tiny and looked like a rose.

It's easy to get choked up as you look back on your life. I can only imagine what the next 25 will hold. I mean, I'm a new category on forms. You know, previously I was in the 18-24 range. Now I'll be 25-32. Movin' on up.

Today I want to share random memories of years past. These aren't necessarily the biggest things to ever happen to me, but they are what popped in my head when I look back to certain ages. Here's my retrospective.

age 1...I don't remember, but I know this is when I became potty-trained. How advanced I was!
age 2...I don't remember, but I know I spent lots of time at my grandparents. Ammi and Abbu are the best.
age 3...Sister Sara came along. I had been prepared for her to be a boy. My great-grandmother was standing by me when my dad called and told me I had a sister. I accidentally hit Mama Dean in the nose with the phone. Geez, have I always had such a temper? Guess so.
age 4...I had a beautiful purple dress. I was obsessed with Strawberry Shortcake. I loved Fred off "Scooby Doo" and the movie "Beau Jest" with Ann-Margret.
age 5...Kindergarten! Aaron and I painted with glow-in-the-dark paints at school.
age 6...I was voted "Quietest Girl" in my first grade class. You may all laugh now.
age 7...My stupid assistant teacher and "friend" ganged up on me and told me I was "mixed" and she said it in a way to make me feel bad. Excuse me, my dad is from Mississippi and my mom is from India...and find me one person who isn't mixed in some way. I'm proud of my heritage. I swear if I ever see Ms. Douglas or Kelley again...
age 8...I went on my first diet after Jeff, my 3rd grade crush, called me chubby. I lost 10 pounds and looked stunning in my yellow pants and panda button-up shirt. The diet consisted mainly of giving up Doritos and ice cream for a month.
age 9...I was such the teacher's pet. Mrs. Manuel was my favorite teacher ever. I was the "absentee girl," going around and gathering daily absences from all the teachers.
age 10...I was obsessed with Joey McIntyre from New Kids on the Block.
age 11...The meanest principal in the world called me out in the hall to scold me when I was sitting on a desk in class. Tons of kids were doing it, and our teacher didn't care. I cried and the teacher came into the hall and said to forget about it. He was once her principal and mean to her too.
age 12...I read Night by Elie Wiesel about concentration camps. It made me sad, and I wonder why people still haven't seemed to learn. People still get tortured based on race and religion.
age 13...I moved to a different school and ran for class reporter. I won.
age 14...This boy I had a crush on asked me to dance at the school dance. I had on a dark green dress and lipstick that was too bright.
age 15...Got my car! Deanna and I could've driven around the country. We loved to ride around.
age 16...I had the best Sweet 16 birthday party ever. It was all pink and white, just like I asked.
age 17...I graduated from high school! I read the Pledge of Allegiance at graduation.
age 18...I went to college and joined a sorority. Everything was so new. I kissed a lot of frogs.
age 19...I moved into the dorm and was so thrilled about the freedom that comes with dorm life. I hated Geology lab. Why in the world would I need to be able to recognize rocks?
age 20...I wrote for the college newspaper and developed such a love for writing.
age 21...I bought the cutest pair of white lace-up wedges. They left imprints in my feet when I wore them, but I didn't care.
age 22...A year I would erase if I could. I moved to DC and had wonderful experiences, but this was not my finest year.
age 23...I walked into a house to eat dinner and there sat my future husband. He made me yummy chicken. We talked for hours. I guess we never stopped.
age 24...Married! I had the wedding of my dreams with the man of my dreams. It finally hit me how freaking lucky I truly am. About everything.

Who knows what this year will hold? I hope it's lots of good things. My horoscope says "Couples still have much to learn from each other." I think people spend a lifetime learning from one another. I have learned much from my family, friends and even those of you out there in Blogland.

As I savor the deliciousness of this day, I look toward the future. Joys and sorrows will come, but I will have people to hold my hand along the way. I have people to cry on when I'm sad, and people to celebrate joys with me. I am not alone. I am loved. And that's the best present I could ever hope for.
posted by Anisa @ 2:10 PM | 1 comments


Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Thank You

Well, tomorrow is my 25th birthday. I can't believe I will have been alive for a quarter-century! As I near this day, I realize there are two very special people that I want to thank for all they've done for me...my mom and dad.

Mama and Daddy, I have learned so much from both of you. There are some things that I need to thank you for. You may not even know I noticed what all you did. It would take me a lifetime to repay you for all you've done for me. Here are just a few things that came to mind...

Mama, thank you for...
  • never letting me get too down on myself. You told me that as long as someone is alive, they can always change the path they're on. You made me feel so empowered.
  • always making me feel that I could talk to you about anything. I have always been able to come to you no matter what. You give great advice.
  • getting me out of school to take the whole family to a "Rolling Stones" concert.
  • never telling me I needed to lose weight. I don't have a complex about weight because of you. You always helped me stick to a diet when I came to you, but you never made me feel bad about myself.
  • being such a great mom. I wouldn't trade you for anything.

Daddy, thank you for...

  • teaching me how to swim. I didn't even notice all the air was out of my "swimming foogles." I was so excited.
  • playing in the sandbox and the Slip 'n Slide with me and Sara. Thanks for taking us on 3-wheeler rides.
  • taking us to the creek in Sturgis when we were little, and even trying to find my lost jelly in the dirty water.
  • teaching me how to change a flat tire. I was so proud the day my tire went flat and this man pulled over to ask me if I needed help. I replied, "No thank you. I've got it."
  • always backing me up. I always knew I had someone on my side that truly understood me.

To both of you, thank you for...

  • instilling in me that marriage is a lifelong commitment. You always stuck together no matter what.
  • taking us on trips. Disney World, the Ozarks, the Florida Keys...all wonderful memories. I'll never forget the trips themselves or the car rides. There was always a fresh batch of Rice Krispie treats for any trip. Thank you for taking me to India for Uncle Saife's wedding too. I will always treasure seeing where part of my heritage is.
  • taking us to visit family often. Many people don't know their families like I do, and I appreciate that I have been to numerous holiday events, weddings and reunions. Those people are my blood.
  • teaching me the power of prayer. I have never felt alone because of that.
  • never giving up on me and being the first in line to cheer me on and congratulate me.

I could never thank you enough for what you both have done for me, the sacrifices you have made. You have made these 25 years wonderful ones. I love you both so much.

posted by Anisa @ 1:30 PM | 6 comments


Monday, June 20, 2005

Crazy Jealous Wife No More

Before you judge me, please allow me to plead sympathy on my behalf. I acted like a crazed jealous wife Saturday morning, and I have decided to share this with all of you. Perhaps reading about my mistake can spare you future humiliation!

Okay, first of all, since January 1, my husband has lost 50 pounds. Bert looks really great. So, of course, I have noticed more glances his way and I just want to slap every woman that dare looks at my husband. I had a nightmare late last week that we were dating other people. We ended up together at the end, but of course that dream stuck in my head. Then he comes home from the gym Thursday or Friday and tells me some woman was trying to strike up a conversation with him on the treadmill. This all happened because he was worried my iPod batteries would die if he used it any longer, so he wasn't listening to music. Therefore, Random Woman felt he was approachable.

I was not too happy about this woman who decided Bert needed to know everything there was to know about her stupid dogs.

Saturday morning we to to the gym. I was sleepy, but determined to work on getting off these last 12 pounds. I went straight to the elliptical machine and Bert went to the treadmill. This blonde headed chick kept looking at Bert over and over. She looked like she was speaking to him, and I could feel my blood boiling. As soon as the treadmill on the other side of him opened up, I got on it immediately. I looked over at Bert and said, "I don't know who that b**** thinks she is, but here I am." I blasted the music on my iPod and walked my little heart out. After a little while, I decided I had enough of the treadmill and wanted to go get on the bike. I took off my headphones and told Bert that I was going to get on the bike and that I'd be ready to leave the gym in 30 minutes.

He looked at me and said, "Anisa, I don't know that that girl was looking at me. She didn't even speak to me. The man who was on the treadmill before you was talking really loudly, trying to psyche himself up. He kept saying, 'You can do it. Push it.' We were all laughing. She was probably looking at him."

Oops.

I just shook my head and said OK. I believed him. We just laughed it off and I hopped off the treadmill. This old lady who had been working out behind us said, "He was telling the truth." She spoke so quietly that I didn't realize she was talking to me. "He was telling the truth," she repeated. "Huh?" I replied. She said, "That man on the treadmill was acting crazy. I couldn't hear him, but it was funny." We chatted for a minute about Crazy Man and then I headed to the bike, wondering why Old Lady got in my business.

I just wanted to pull my hair out.

So, there you have it. I looked like an idiot at the gym. Luckily, I didn't say very much. There were hardly any people there. I didn't say anything to Blonde Girl's face and I didn't tell Old Lady to mind her own business.

We went home and I came to a startling realization. I decided that the most unattractive thing I can do is turn into Crazy Jealous Wife. I told Bert I was sorry and I wouldn't jump to conclusions anymore. He told me he thought it was cute that I did. I decided I needed to reign in my insecurities. I thought I acted like a fool.

And while it might have been cute this time, on any larger scale, I'm sure it wouldn't have been. I trust him completely, and he feels the same way about me. I decided in the future if I am getting angry, I'll just go over and say something - anything - to Bert to let Random Next Girl know that he's with someone. No need to make myself look stupid in the process. I knew it was irrational of me to get upset, but the dream and the lady hitting on him a few days earlier...and my PMS...got the best of me. I didn't like how it made me feel, though. Crazy Jealous Wife will not be me. Nope, never again.

I must say, though, I was very happy as Bert opened his very own iPod mini for Father's Day. He was shocked and so excited, as he's been hinting about one since the day I got mine. I'd be lying if I didn't say that an added perk is that randoms won't try to strike up a conversation with my husband at the gym while he has headphones stuck in his ears.
posted by Anisa @ 12:50 PM | 2 comments


Friday, June 17, 2005

Celeb Reality

I thought it was just a normal day, nothing out of the ordinary. I was in the bathroom, fighting with my straightener, trying to get the hair on both sides of my hair to flip out equally. "Anisa," my husband called out, "Tom proposed to Katie on top of the Eiffel Tower this morning."

I was speechless.

TomKat has now become an officially engaged couple. Katie Holmes has also come out saying she is going to convert to Scientology, the ambiguous religion no one really knows about. All we know is they're very anti-medicine and some part of their doctrine is about aliens. Oh, and they have a Celebrity Centre where those of special stature can go and worship without dealing with the common folk.

As they've rounded the talk show circuits promoting their upcoming films "War of the Worlds" and “Batman Begins,” both have openly discussed their relationship. Both have had arms pumping, fists in the air and screaming and showing big, toothy grins. “I love this woman!” Tom Cruise shouted to a mildly frightened audience on Oprah. Katie smiled a not so coy smile when David Letterman asked if marriage was in the cards.

After their relationship became public in April, the have kept themselves in the media spotlight. Much like the doomed Bennifer, they thrust themselves in the public eye and wanted to make sure everyone in the free world knew their love for one another.

Does it matter that they have a 16-year age difference? I don’t think age really matters that much if it doesn’t bother them. What is a little off-putting is that Katie had a huge crush on Tom when she was growing up. She had a poster of him on her wall and dreamed of marrying him. After the dust settles, will she realize that her fantasy-come-true isn’t some epitome of perfection?

Naysayers point to the quick engagement. Yes, I also think it’s very quick, but I must admit Bert and I had already decided to get married after only 2 months of knowing each other. Kate Hudson and Chris Robinson moved in the same week that they met each other. I don’t think you can put a time limit on love. It’s just different for different people.

It’s not the age or the quickness or even the Scientology—I think marriage is definitely easier if both parties have the same religion. I think the problem is that they live in this place called Hollywood, where reality and fantasy blend together. Everyone is rich and beautiful. Beneath the glossy pictures splashed across every magazine on the newsstand, there are two real people. I’m not convinced they’ve faced reality just yet.

I believe real love is a bit quieter than Tom and Katie’s. The “I love you so much” and “You are the best in the world” etc. are the things people say to each other behind closed doors. Holding hands and smiling are sufficient to show the world how much you care. I have much respect for stars who get married as quietly as the paparazzi will let them. Love is something very precious, and something that if two people really have, they’ll want to keep for themselves.

Certainly there is an excitement when you have found your soulmate. You have a glow about you, a permanent smile on your face. The depths of your love can’t even be truly spoken in worlds. They are felt in the tender moments you share with that person. Those moments shared with the world take away from their meaning. It almost seems as if Tom and Katie have something to prove.

Proving your love and commitment to one another is something that you don’t have to do for the world to see. The proof is between the two people in the relationship, when they can sit together in silence on the couch and realize they’ve never felt closer.
posted by Anisa @ 12:52 PM | 7 comments


Thursday, June 16, 2005

In This (Clumsy) Skin

Last night, Bert and I went to see "Hitch" at the dollar movie theatre. Let me first say that's one of the nice things about living in a place bigger than where I grew up...dollar movie theatres! Two people can go see a movie for about the price of a rental. Isn't that great?!

Anyway, the movie is about Will Smith a.k.a. Hitch, the date doctor. As you picked up from commercials and previews, he helps the guy get the girl. The movie made me start wondering, though: at what point do we stop trying to impress our potential significant other and start being our goofy, dorky selves?

Hitch helps guys be really smooth and do all the right things. It's so true that at the beginning of interest in someone, you do have to play it cool. Don't act too interested, appear to have a busy, bustling social life, etc. We've all done that at the beginning, but at some point, you start to do things like spill water on yourself at restaurants, come down with a stomach bug and accidentally snort when you laugh really hard. Now, if we would've done those things at the beginning, we could've sent potential suitors running! However, the more we have invested in a relationship, instead of thinking throw-up is gross, you begin to care about the other person and just want them to get better. Being clumsy could put off someone that is super-athletic, but after a while, it's cute that you don't do everything with perfect grace. And if you snort when laughing too early on, they may get scared that you do that every time. Later on, though, they'll know it was just a fluke and start laughing with (and at) you.

I'm terribly clumsy. I always have a bruise or a cut somewhere. The front of my shirt is often wet after eating or brushing my teeth. My heel gets caught in the crack in sidewalks. I bang my knees on things. Bert just laughs and says, "my clumsy pikita" (pikita meaning "little one" in Spanish). Bert has no sense of direction. Does it bug me? Now I just laugh and am glad that I inherited a great one from my daddy. At the beginning, if he got us lost and had no idea where we were going, I might have been annoyed. Now, I just tell him where to take the next left and laugh.

Is it our idiosyncrasies that endear us to others? Surely it can't be playing it cool. That eventually ends, and beneath that facade, we're all just regular people with our own quirks. When we realize we care for someone and their eccentricities make us care for them even more, I think that's when you know it's the real deal. I am happy to say at this point in my life, I am comfortable in my own bruised skin.
posted by Anisa @ 1:05 PM | 0 comments


Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Driving Me Crazy!!

You know how people do things that really get under your skin? You don't really know why you're so annoyed that someone is biting their nails or blowing their nose really loudly or talking in baby talk to their dog, but you're just bugged. They're getting on your nerves, and you feel like you're about to burst.

A few things have happened lately that have driven me a little crazy. I hope you'll get a chuckle out of some of these and share some of your own pet peeves with me!

  • "I need to talk to you about something..."

OK, That's perfectly fine if you need to talk to me about something, but just tell me! Don't say we've got to talk, and that it has to be done in person. Just tell me when we can actually talk! People say those things and your imagination runs wild at what they might have to say. You get all worked up, meet them for lunch, and then they break it to you...they need help planning a baby shower. You get all worked up for nothing. Even if you do get worked up for a good reason, you could have avoided all that stress if they would've just told you what they had to tell you without freaking you out beforehand. Who needs extra stress?

  • Crying and greedy kids at the store

Oh.my.gosh. This drives me crazy! I have a friend who was a witness to a such event. There was a young child sitting in the buggy at Wal-Mart, crying her eyes out. My friend couldn't take it anymore and said, "Somebody needs to hug that baby!" I don't understand why people ignore the fact that their kids are screaming and crying. They might be immune to it, but everyone else is not! And when kids are continuously asking for toys, candy, etc., I can't help but wonder if people tell their kids no anymore.

  • Someone forgot to flush the toilet

Just because you use the bathroom in a public place doesn't mean you don't have to use proper bathroom etiquette! Ugh!

  • Hearing the tail end of a song you love on the radio and missing a TV show you really wanted to watch

Is this Murphy's law? Last night, I was all ready to watch the finale of Britney and Kevin: Chaotic. It's the wedding episode and I admit that I got involved. I was sucked into their lives...I tried to fight it, but I couldn't. It normally came on at 9 EST, but since it was the finale, it came on at 8 EST. I discovered this at 8:48, when Bert turned the TV on to flip through the channels. "It's already on," he said with fear in his voice. "$%@!#$%," I replied. It's also annoying when you hear a song on the radio that you love and for about 3 seconds, you can't figure out if it's the beginning or the end. Oh yes, 99% of the time, it's the end.

  • People that pull out in front of you really fast and then drive really slowly

What is this? This happened to me just the other day, and I don't understand it. Why are you burning rubber to get in front of me to drive 15 miles per hour? Do you have OCD and must be in front of the next white car that passes? I just don't get it.

And here's one more...but this falls under the category of things that make me forget about my pet peeves:

  • Surprise anniversaries

I had a lovely, unexpected 10-month anniversary yesterday, complete with a beautiful card, flowers and the new Coldplay CD. Things like that make all the little things disappear, because even though a surprise anniversary can be little, it sure seems like a big deal to me.

posted by Anisa @ 2:12 PM | 7 comments


Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Hitting the Books

So, I've just now gotten back into reading. Before I met Bert, I read constantly. You'd always find me at Barnes & Noble, looking throught the newest books. I'd devour one book after another. The books were my companions and I traveled places near and far with the characters. It was a lonely time in my life, and books did much to fill that void. After meeting Bert, everything was such a whirlwind of events that my life was like a novel in itself. However, now that things are settling down, I realize I miss reading. We've both found ourselves frequenting bookstores more often and are enjoying the simple pleasure of reading a good book.

In that spirit, there's been a questionnaire floating around Blogland asking people to share insight into their book collection. So, here's mine. Enjoy!

1. Total number of books I've owned:

I really don't know the exact number. I could take a wild guess and say I probably have 150 books. Between me and Bert, though, we probably together have maybe 800 or so. He's an avid book collector, and now we love to look through antique shops for old books. I love to own books that brought me great pleasure.

2. The last book I bought:

I just bought Ralph's Party by Lisa Jewell and Hillary Clinton's autobiography. Borders was having a great sale!

3. The last book I read:

I'm at the tail end of The GRITS (Girls Raised In The South) Guide to Life by Deborah Ford. My parents gave it to me as a birthday present, and it's a cute book. It reminds me a lot of the Sweet Potato Queens books. A very light, enjoyable read with insights into Southern culture.

4. 5 books that mean a lot to me:

  • Summer Sisters by Judy Blume

I've read this book twice, and I don't often do that! I really enjoyed Just As Long As We're Together when I was entering my teenage years, and this was like a grown-up version of that. It's one of those books that stays with you long after you read it. Both of these Judy Blume books are near and dear to me. I can always pick them up and feel like I'm visiting an old friend. Depending on what's going on in my life, they mean a little something different every time. It's been a while since I read it, but I remember after reading Summer Sisters, it was my favorite book.

  • Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood by Rebecca Wells

I admire this author so much. I enjoyed this and Little Altars Everywhere. I took a Creative Writing course in college and our final project was to write a short story. One of the characters in my story was a Jamaican gypsy, and I painstakingly tried to write the story in such a way that the reader could hear the lady talking and envision her. Wells does this with her literature. You are transported to Louisiana and can picture the entire book as if you were a family friend during it all.

  • Tuesdays With Morrie by Mitch Albom

My sister had this book, and I picked it up one day when I was looking for something different to read. Two hours later, all my mascara was gone, and black tears poured down my face. It's amazing that this is a true story. I thought about Morrie for a long time after I put this book down. It really resonated with me that we each have the ability to make such an impact on another person's life. Amazing book.

  • Sufi poetry (works by Omar Khayam, Hazrat Imran Khan and Rumi)

I am still searching for the perfect collection of this. This poetry is truly amazing and has transcended the ages. My mom's family is from India, and this work seems to transport me back in time to the Far East. The poetry is written with the belief that God is in everything...in beauty, in love, etc. I used one of Khan's works in my wedding.

"Is love pleasure, is love merriment? No, love is longing constantly; love is persevering unwearedly; love is hoping patiently; love is willing surrender; love is regarding constantly the pleasure and displeasure of the beloved, for love is resignation to the will of the possessor of one’s heart; it is love that teaches us: Thou, not I."

Isn't that true? Love does teach that someone else comes before us.

  • Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton

I remember reading this book, astonished at the beautiful descriptions. That's why I liked this book so much. It was probably the first classic I really took the time to read, and not just skim through in order to take a test. I never forgot this from the book:

"Here the snow was so pure that the tiny tracks of wood-animals had left on it intricate lace-like patterns, and the bluish cones caught in its surface stood out like ornaments of bronze."

Well, there you have it, folks. I hope you enjoyed it and will think about what books mean a lot to you. The power of the written word is a strong one. It certainly is a great talent when someone can put thoughts down on paper and leave others a little different after reading it.

posted by Anisa @ 1:45 PM | 0 comments


Monday, June 13, 2005

Cleaning Out My Closet

Once I get started cleaning, I just can't seem to stop. This past weekend, it was time to not only give the house a deep-down cleaning; it was time to re-organize everything! I have been putting off putting all my summer clothes in my closet and moving my sweaters somewhere else. I could wait no longer because my closet looked like a tornado had hit. Shoes were in a gigantic pile in the floor and the only shoes I could easily find were my hot pink heels, because of the bright color amid the array of brown and black shoes.

As I sorted through clothes and shoes and other random pieces, I would often be lost in thought, thinking of the significance of the items. My big giant wedding planning book reminded me of all the preparations that went into the biggest day of my life. I came across a sweater from The Limited that I begged for as a Christmas present. I carefully hung up the coral and white spaghetti-strap dress that I wore to my Rehearsal Dinner. I found a black halter top with sparkles that I wore to a sorority party. I saw a pair of pink pants that went from comfortably loose to horribly tight after an indulgent summer as a DC intern. I came across a pair of white lace-up wedges that have come back in style that I used to plan entire outfits around.

The list goes on and on...

I continued to clean out drawers and cabinets, staying lost in thought of days past. Cards, photographs and notes served as memories of special days, or days that became special merely because of the note itself. I cut my knee on a pin I picked up somewhere that flashed when clasped onto clothing. I thought of how when places are giving those out, they're almost as coveted as beads at Mardi Gras.

Now everything's mostly clean and the garbage has been taken out. I re-organize everything in the summer and winter and it's a big job. Although a lot has to be cleaned, I wouldn't trade the day I get to take a walk down Memory Lane. Happy or sad, it's nice to reflect on the events that bring us to this moment of our lives.

When I get ready to go to work tomorrow, it will be nice to open a closet where I can find everything. I know the closet will become messy again, and this winter it'll be nice to put away the clothes that I will wear for my one-year anniversary, my birthday and holidays. I will again be lost in thought with a smile on my face.
posted by Anisa @ 1:31 PM | 4 comments


Friday, June 10, 2005

I...

Today's post is a little different. I saw this and thought it was a much more insightful questionnaire than most. You really do have to look within to come up with the answers. If you choose to fill this out yourself, I encourage you to delete all my answers first so that your mind is wide open for possible answers. I hope you all enjoy getting to know a little more about me!

I hope everyone enjoys their weekend!

I am: a hopeless romantic
I know: I still have a way to go before I am the person I want to be
I have: to have accountability to keep me on track of my goals (like getting to work on time!)
I wish: on stars
I hate: not getting enough sleep (and, yes, I hate a group of about 5 people as well, but I’m working on it…)
I miss: having a ton of friends and family close by
I fear: getting some terrible disease…I’m always worried about my health
I hear: music…on the radio, on my iPod, everywhere!
I search: for the perfect pair of summer shoes
I wonder: where I’ll be in 10 years
I regret: pushing my sister into the deep end when we took swimming lessons, even though the instructor told me to…still makes me cry, even though she’s long forgiven me
I love: those that I love deeply and forever
I'm lucky because: I couldn’t ask for a better family
I ache: for chocolate when I’m on a diet
I care: what people think
I always: apologize when I’m wrong
I am not: going to let someone run over me
I dance: like I was made to dance with my husband…either both of us can’t dance or we’re both awesome! :)
I sing: in the car and in the shower…and sometimes it sounds awful, but sometimes it rates as decent karaoke
I do not always: say things in the nicest way
I should not: get so angry
I am: truly happy…and I do NOT take that for granted
I love: my husband, friends and family...these are the people who have stuck by me, and I will always do the same for them
I write: as much as possible; it’s my passion
I also fear: the dark (I slept with a night light until I was married! I really HATE the dark. I still check in my closet every night.)
I win: Yahtzee a fair amount of the time
I lose: poker almost every time…I really try, though!
I confuse: even myself with my mood changes
I listen: to advice and criticism from others, even if it takes me a little while
I go: to the gym grudgingly, but am happy that I went when it’s time to leave after my workout
I am glad that: Bert is right…things do usually work out
I am happy about: the dinner I made last night…it was a new recipe for an Enchilada Bake and it was DELICIOUS!! (not that I’m bragging or anything)
I am obsessed with: celebrity gossip, of course! ;)
I should be: looking toward the future more and stop glancing back at the past
I want: to live a long, happy, healthy life…don’t we all?
posted by Anisa @ 1:40 PM | 0 comments


Thursday, June 09, 2005

Promise You Won't Tell Anyone...

As usual, I've been reading through my daily celebrity gossip columns. Over the past two days, there has been much scandal involving Lindsay Lohan. She denied entrance to her MTV Movie Awards party to Jessica and Ashlee Simpson, due to speculation of Ashlee hooking up with Wilmer Valderrama, Lindsay's ex. Then Miss Lohan said in an interview that she didn't want to be known as some crazy Tara Reid-esque party girl.

Oh boy.

While these items of juicy gossip don't directly involve me, I couldn't help but think about why people love to gossip. I mean, we all know it's wrong, but it seems to me I've never come across one person who didn't love to be told some good dish.

This doesn't mean that I go around talking about everyone's business. I don't feel the need to share the juicy details with everyone, but boy do I love knowing it myself! For those of us that read the gossip magazines (and yes, Us Weekly and People count), we have to know that we get some joy out of knowing about rumors and scandals.

I have come to the conclusion that people enjoy knowing all kinds of information because we like to be "in the know." We like to feel we are important and therefore, should be privy to the latest information.

So, yeah, it's obviously wrong to gossip, but where does it cross the line from talking to gossip? People have varied beliefs about this. Some people won't say a word about another person unless it's nice, like my grandmother. Some people will chat with their close family and girlfriends, but not in a malicious way. Some people will tell it all!

If you're worried about someone's behavior and are discussing that with someone, I don't consider that gossip. Say a friend has an eating disorder; that must be talked about in order to get the person proper help and hold a possible intervention. However, say you had a friend that just found out her one-night stand has caused a pregnancy. Yes, she will eventually show, but it's wrong to share that with people. Why? Because that's malicious and will cause others to look at her differently. She may decide to go stay with a relative and give the baby up for adoption and it would be wrong to share her deep, dark secret with the world.

If a friend confides something in me, I will keep their secret. After all, it takes a friend to be one. We've all had friends tell something about us we didn't want others to know. And, boy, does that sting. I still remember the whole school finding out about a crush I had on a boy in the 9th grade, all because my friend couldn't keep her mouth shut. I still remember the date she told everyone! September 2. See what a big impact a betrayed confidence can have? I still remember the embarassment and betrayal I felt. And I know if I tell something I'm not supposed to, I can hurt someone the same way. I sure wouldn't want to do that.

It's not always easy to know when to keep your mouth shut, but there's this nagging little feeling in our stomachs called a conscience. The easiest rule I have found is if I can feel it tugging at me, I know I should take a deep breath, keep quiet and go read Us Weekly.
posted by Anisa @ 1:50 PM | 6 comments


Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Everything in Threes

You know that old saying about how everything happens in threes? I guess most of these legendary quotes that have been passed down are based in something. It definitely is a downer, though, when three things do go wrong. Wouldn't one be enough?

Over the past two days, three things have gone wrong with Bert's truck. The transmission needed new transmission fluid, the starter died and the battery died. I was being positive and supportive until the battery died, and then I wanted to look up at the sky and scream, "What did I do?"

This brings me to my next thought...do we earn our suffering? I know various religions view this differently, but I do believe some suffering is warranted and some is needless. By needless, I mean we didn't do anything to deserve it, but it comes as a test. As far as warranted suffering, I am reminded of an old saying. My mom always says a kindness is rewarded three-fold, and cruelty is repaid ten-fold. This really resonated with me. If someone does something nice for me, I do think sweet thoughts about that person and sing their praises, but if someone wrongs me, boy do I harp on that longer! And if I'm rude to someone, I almost just wait for something to happen. It always does. I like to think I get little punishments here to clean my "meanness" roster.

But then, my thoughts turn to children that are abused. Or civilians that are killed in wars. I don't understand why this happens. There is no rhyme or reason to this. Then, all my theories just seem to disappear. I can't make sense of it.

I guess all these things lead people to wondering about suffering and the meaning of life, etc. I have come to one conclusion: pursuit of happiness. Simplistic, I know, but I truly believe life is all about being happy in spite of suffering and all too often, in spite of ourselves.

The main thing I’ve learned is to not stand in the way of my own happiness. Over analyzing, running through a bunch of scenarios and “what if’s” through my head can take me away from what’s going on right now. I am the queen of thinking through entire scenarios of “If I see such and such person, I know exactly what I’ll say to them!” You know what? These situations never happen.

So, even though the Check Emissions light just came on in my car (sigh), I'm trying not to get mad about it. Does this mean everything in fours? I sure hope it'll end soon.
posted by Anisa @ 2:20 PM | 2 comments


Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Liar, Liar Pants on Fire

So, I have a good friend who was telling me the other night at dinner about her need to be overly honest. She just sold her condo and the building inspector came over to check out the place. Before he could get to work, she decided to go ahead and tell him all that was wrong with her home. Her husband was mortified, but kept his mouth closed, hoping and praying she would stop. It all worked out just fine, but her stories got me thinking...how honest do we have to be?

One of the classic questions is to think about at what point you would tell a cashier they had given you back excess change. Would you tell them if it was any amount? $5? $10? $20? Never? People have different schools of thought about this. Some people think you should always tell the cashier since it's not really your money. Others think, well, they messed up. I paid and they gave me too much back. It's not my fault they can't count change. After thinking about this, I came to the conclusion that I would probably say something after $10. How did I come up with this? I guess it's because I do think it's their mistake and $10 isn't going to hurt a business. However, more than that, I would begin to worry that the cashier would lose their job, etc. And I don't want that on my conscience. And honestly, I don't really count change when they give it back to me. I would most likely notice their mistake long after I had left the store.

I have always had a huge conscience. I can't stand to tell a blatant lie, but rationalize...that's a different story. Haven't we all been a bit misleading to our parents in our high school days? Have you ever found yourself wording something in such a way that you haven't exactly told a lie? I have friends who partied a bit too hard the night before to go to work and called in with a "bug" or "food poisoning." The rationale? If they ingested anything (be it food or drinks) that made them sick, they were able to call it food poisioning. We all make mistakes, but chronic falsehoods become our truths and that's not good. Cut yourself slack for a one-time offense, but after that...you may want to rethink this strategy. If you're a female with terrible cramps, can you call in with an upset stomach? I think, yes, as long as it's a rarity. What good are you at work if you're doubled over in pain? What about "my (insert elderly relative) died?" I think no. Why? Unless it's true, you'll always wonder if you killed grandma if she keels over a week later. Karma, baby.

What about little white lies? I think no harm is done if you tell a friend you love their new mohawk. What can they do? They just had their hair done and they probably know it looks horrible, but unlike clothes, you can't just change hair. About clothing, I think hurting someone's feelings is worse than telling them they have gained 5 pounds too many to wear a certain pair of pants. They know they have without you telling them.

I have some friends who also feel the need to tell their husbands everything that their girlfriends tell them. They think it's wrong to withhold any information from their husbands. Now, I'm all for being open and honest with your spouse, but do they really need to know your friend's embarassing stories that you were made to swear you'd never tell a soul? No way! I don't want my friend's husbands knowing all my personal business; they're not my close friends. I think this is definitely crossing the line.

So, what's the bottom line? There's no magical formula here. Use your best judgement! Don't lie about important things, but don't reveal too much information. It's always best to err on the side of truth. Keep your promises, be an honest employee and don't always feel the need to tell the entire story. Some things are better left unsaid.
posted by Anisa @ 12:50 PM | 9 comments


Monday, June 06, 2005

Weekend Excitement

I.am.so.excited.

Coldplay is coming to Atlanta! I can hardly stand it. Just last month I was saying that they were the only band I would absolutely, positively have to see if they came in this area. And then, well, here they come! They're coming in September! I was up at the computer at 10am Saturday getting tickets. They had just gone on sale, and they were selling out so quickly. Ticketmaster forces you to fill out pages of information at lightning speed, so I had to get my keyboarding skills in order to even get the tickets. Oh yes, people, I won the Keyboarding Award in high schoool.

I've been excited about a lot of stuff lately. Saturday I ate at my absolutely favorite Mexican restaurant in the world and Sunday afternoon, I had a great time downtown. Nothing huge happened...just a good time. Bert and I window shopped and ate at the absolutely neatest lunch place ever. We just happened upon it, and had a fantastic parking spot to boot! It's always so fun when the parking gods are in your favor.

Today I have a terrible headache and I don't feel good at all, but when I think about this weekend, I can't help but smile. And that's a really good feeling and one that can't be replaced by feeling good physically, but being down.

I'm not going to let how I physically feel affect me emotionally. I am so terrible about not feeling good and therefore being mean to others. Does this happen to everyone? Usually when I feel like this, I think I should put a sign up at work that says, "Does not play well with others." It reminds me of some commercial where people get off to the wrong start and they "accidentally" spill coffee on others, knock over stacks of papers and close elevator doors when people are yelling "Hold the door!" I love that commercial. Haven't we all felt like that before?

And on top of everything else, it's Monday, certifiably the worst day of the week. It seems like an eternity to the weekend, but it will eventually get here.

And now, before I sign off today, here is a little something that is sure to make the hair on your arms stand up:

Has anyone ever seen the 1993 movie "Demolition Man"? It's with Sylvester Stallone and Sandra Bullock and is a futuristic movie. There are two completely freaky things in the movie.

  1. Arnold Schwarzenneger became the President after an amendment was passed so that non-US born citizens could be the President.
  2. Much of the movie deals with a prison, and one of the prisoners up for parole is named SCOTT PETERSON.

I just thought I'd share with everyone for a little fun movie fact for the day. Hope everyone's Monday is as good as a Monday can be!

posted by Anisa @ 2:15 PM | 0 comments


Friday, June 03, 2005

My Big Eccentric Indian Family

Sometimes I am convinced my life is like “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” except with Indian people. My mom moved to the United States when she was seven years old from India, and I am very proud of that part of my heritage. However, I often find myself utterly confused at the actions of many members of my family.

My grandmother’s house has every single thing you could ever possibly want or need. I still laugh when I think about what happened after my dad sprained his ankle. Hobbling to their door for Sunday lunch, my grandparents inquired as to what was wrong. Upon hearing my dad was suffering with a sprained ankle, my grandmother appeared with two sets of crutches in different sizes. Mind you, no one in my family has ever (knock on wood) broken a bone or had a fracture of any sort. Yet somehow Ammi (as we all call her) was prepared for the day someone might have discomfort in their leg. That’s just the beginning. If you’re craving chocolate, rest assured varieties with and without nuts, caramel and more are there. If you want to go for a nice stroll around the tree-lined neighborhood, she’ll dig up some tennis shoes in your size. Her home rivals the stock in your local Wal-Mart.

Mealtime isn’t simply a time to eat; it’s a time to eat a lot. Indian people equate food with love. “You only ate one plate? You don’t like it?” That’s what you’ll hear if you even attempt to enjoy a normal quantity of food. If you’re eating with an Indian family, heap on the rice, naan (bread) and kabobs. You better save room for dessert too. It’s like a rite of passage when anyone brings their new significant other over in regards to mealtime. Without fail, our unsuspecting American fiancés will go to Sunday lunch at my grandparents and leave feeling completely ill. They later have to be told that they don’t literally have to eat three full plates of food. You just have to eat what you can and heap praise upon the chef. Before you stop eating, you must say that you absolutely, positively can’t eat another bite and that was the best (insert a dish here) that you’ve ever eaten. That’s certainly not hard to do with my grandmother—it’s no secret she makes the best Indian food this side of the Atlantic.

Indian people are also the most generous people you will ever meet. If you comment, “Oh! What a lovely vase!” you will be offered it. If you compliment a certain dish at a meal, you will have the leftovers packed up for you on your way out. If you’re more than 30 minutes from home, you will be invited to stay the night. Everyone has their idiosyncrasies, but I believe they are much more pronounced in the Indian culture. Along with eccentricity in my family comes a lot of love, and that’s something I wouldn’t change for anything. I know that I have a group of people that would do anything for me, and I know they’d never arrive without a big plate of fresh Indian food.
posted by Anisa @ 4:22 PM | 2 comments


Thursday, June 02, 2005

Skipping Fights

One by one as all my friends from college got married, they all described marriage with the same word: compromise. I have now been married for almost 10 months, and I concur. There’s a lot of compromise and a lot to learn as a newlywed, but I think I’m doing a pretty good job so far.

There are certainly the classic tips on marriage, like picking your battles and not trying to change a person, but I think my husband, Bert, and I have come up with something that could be a marriage-saver for many. We skip fights.

Oh yes, we skip the entire argument. It works wonders. Take yesterday, for example, we had just worked out and I was starving and Bert’s calf muscle was cramping. We were in Wal-Mart and being snippy and difficult. There we were, in the middle of the sporting goods section, arguing. Over what you might ask? I really don’t even remember the details, only that I knew I was too tired to argue back and forth and I didn’t feel like coming up with any points to support how I felt. All of a sudden Bert said, “OK, you said you wanted to skip the last fight. I want to skip this one.”

Brilliant.

You see, we weren’t fighting about anything of real consequence. We were both tired and ready to go home and eat and relax, but there we were, stuck in Wal-Mart with our shopping list. The items all seemed to be at every corner of the store, and we were like a couple of cranky toddlers.

We actually choose to skip most of our arguments when one person can tell that what we’re doing is a giant waste of time and energy. Many arguments are pointless and you don’t even remember what they were about the next day. So, why not skip them and get straight to making up and getting on with your life?

All we have to do in order for this to work is that one person says they want to skip the fight and nine times out of ten, the other person agrees. Too much arguing and nit-picking can destroy a marriage; why spend all your time trying to make a point? We’re all right some of the time, and we’re all wrong sometimes too.

Since the fight was over, I could get back to what I wanted to think about. All I wanted to do was hurry up and get out of there so I could tear into my box of Cookie Crisp in the car. There I was, big smile on my face, mouthful of mini-cookies and happy sitting there in silence because my mouth was full, not because I was mad.
posted by Anisa @ 5:35 PM | 0 comments


Wednesday, June 01, 2005

The Top Twelve

So, I got the iPod for my birthday! My parents gave it to me, and as I opened it, I started screaming like a 6-year old on Christmas morning.

I love it.

For the past 4 days, I have been referring to my new iPod mini as "the baby." I treat it like a child. I am very careful with it, and it is rarely out of my sight. When we are apart, it is still on my thoughts. I want to work out all the time just so I can use it.

I sat in front of my parent's computer Saturday night, very grateful they had DSL, and downloaded about 400 songs on the iPod. I bought some, uploaded some CD's on it and copied a bunch of songs that were downloaded when I was in college. I sat there, choosing my perfect catalog of songs, and the songs served as reminders of things. Quickly, this iPod was becoming like my diary. Songs on there transport me. "Take On Me" by Aha reminds me of being little at my grandmother's and watching MTV. "Brian Wilson" by Barenaked Ladies reminds me of late nights in college. "The Luckiest" by Ben Folds takes me right back to my wedding day and when Bert and I were dating. An iPod becomes like part of your identity. You handpick songs that mean something to you, whether it's as simple as something that gets you in the mood to dance, or if it's something sentimental like a song played on your wedding day.

On the iTunes web site, there is a section where artists pick about 12 songs that are supposedly on their iPods. This got me thinking...which 12 songs would I pick to best represent me? Here's what I came up with...

  1. "Take On Me" by Aha
  2. "The Luckiest" by Ben Folds
  3. "Tangerine" by Led Zeppelin
  4. "Amsterdam" by Coldplay
  5. "Fa Fa" by Guster
  6. "King of New Orleans" by Better than Ezra
  7. "Strange Condition" by Pete Yorn
  8. "Always a Woman" by Billy Joel
  9. "Hate It or Love It" by The Game feat. 50 Cent
  10. "Bohemian Like You" by The Dandy Warhols
  11. "Miss You" by the Rolling Stones
  12. "Beautiful Girl" by Pete Droge and the Sinners

There are MANY more songs that I absolutely love, but this is a pretty good representation of my musical tastes. All of these songs remind me of something or take me to a certain place.

The tiny silver machine is my diary. It might be just music to some, but to me it's much more. It's the soundtrack of my life.

posted by Anisa @ 1:48 PM | 4 comments