Wednesday, December 31, 2003

I'm back from an awesome holiday week with the family. But it's good to be home.

And I've been busy since I've been back:
- I painted my front hall. (Well -- ALMOST painted. I got everything done but the closet door and then I ran out of paint. And the paint store is closed today and tomorrow. And the accent color I bought is waaaaaay too dark, so I have to buy something lighter when I'm there. But I'm almost done with this project. Right?)
- Before I painted, I installed dimmer switches on a bunch of lights. I was going to move three of the lights to the back of the wall they currently occupy, but the switch box I bought was deeper than the wall -- and when I got all the electrical stuff torn apart, moving everything looked like waaaaay more work than I cared to undertake.
- Paul and a friend from SF came over this afternoon to watch my new Pirates of the Caribbean DVD, but the special features menu was fucked up so we could watch only the movie. What's the point of having a DVD if you can't watch the bloopers and the deleted scenes?
- I've covered my condo with rarely-worn clothes in an attempt to decide what stays and what goes. It's hard to part with my children, but I refuse to let my stuff occupy more room than I get to live in.

Now I'm off to a housewarming/NYE party at Terry and Kent's. See you next year!

Monday, December 29, 2003

Guys' Day Out

The nephew and I spent our first afternoon together today. And we packed in a lot of fun: Smiley-face pancakes at Village Inn, paint samples from Shirwin-Williams (a stop that was more for me than for him), sticker shopping at Michael's and a (very cheap) matinee of Brother Bear.

He's such a good little kid, and playing Uncle Jake all day gave me such a profound sense of happiness. But when he's all strapped in the back seat of my car and we're driving around town, suddenly every other driver on the road is a blazing maniac and I'm a white-knuckled little old lady.

A kid's love and trust can sometimes be exhausting.

If I didn't get up to pee once in a while ...

... you'd never know I was alive. Yesterday I sat through a weepy WWII Esther Williams/Van Johnson flick on cable with my dad, The Haunted Mansion with Jeff and three hours of Trading Spaces with my mom.

I did, however, get off my flabby white ass long enough to run three miles in Iowa's unusually balmy December weather. I ran through my old paper-route neighborhood and admired all the magnificent houses I was too young to appreciate when I was younger. And I took four laps around the track at my high school, but nobody came out to cheer me on or welcome me home. Sigh.

Today we're enjoying the rule of It Always Happens in Threes: Mom and Dad blew a fuse or something that affected a large portion of the house, the brakes went out in Dad's van, and my sister and her husband woke up to water dripping from their kitchen ceiling.

It looks like my work here is done. They'll be glad to have me gone when I head back to Chicago tomorrow.

Saturday, December 27, 2003

Another day at the mall.

Mom, the sister, the kids and I hit the sprawling Coral Ridge Mall today to redeem gift cards, take advantage of after-Christmas sales, entertain the kids and mock Midwestern hairstyles. And I came to the realization that, aside from a new dining room table, there's really nothing else in the world I need to buy.

Except a baseball cap with ear flaps on clearance at The Gap. Just $3.99.

Tonight we continue Conspicuous Consumption Tour 2003 at our friendly neighborhood Outback Steakhouse, where a big poochy tummy and a flabby white ass wait excitedly to come home with me.

In the mean time, you get to hear how cute the niece is. She's just two -- and just learning to say meaningful words. She's taken to calling me "Uppa Jake," and she likes it when I swing her "uppa down."

I know. Isn't she just brilliant? Couldn't you just die?

Friday, December 26, 2003

The after-Christmas mob never really materialized here. Mom, the sister and I hit Lindale Mall this morning to take advantage of all the sales, and we left with armloads of stuff and absolutely zero crowd frustration.

And now I have all my 2004 calendars and next year's Christmas cards -- all at half price. Woo-hoo.

Best of all, I ran into some long-lost friends and got caught up on gossip from my old job and from my old theater company.

Now it's off to play Uncle Jake and eat all the Christmas leftovers before they go bad. Not a bad life...

Thursday, December 25, 2003

A bellyfull of Christmas cheer.

I made it home safely, and we had a wonderful Christmas eve/day as a family -- it was filled with our traditional Norwegian dinner (and traditional Norwegian dinner leftovers the next day), lots of music, lots of canasta, some snuggly naps and two very excited children.

The little doctor outfit I got the nephew and the Disney Princesses dress-up set I got the niece went over extremely well, and I got a pretty nifty-ass mixer for my already-packed kitchen. (Someday I may even learn to cook.) Tomorrow we'll hit all the after-Christmas sales in the hopes of scoring bargains -- and of running into people I haven't seen in ages.

Now it's time to put the kids to bed and play even more canasta. Pardon my smiley emoticon, but it's been a very merry Christmas indeed. :)

Wednesday, December 24, 2003

All packed and ready to go.

I'm off for a four-hour drive and a six-day holiday visit with the family. I didn't get all my presents wrapped and I have no idea how my plants will survive for a week in this dry weather, but I'm sure the holidays will be spectacular nonetheless.

Stay tuned for detailed reports of all the cute things my niece and nephew do, every game of canasta we play, and all the friends I see while I'm home.

Have a great Christmas!

Monday, December 22, 2003

So the first day in the new office went well.

I scored a couch and a refrigerator from the leftover-furniture pile, so my new home away from home is looking more and more like a home. Which might not be so bad when I'm stuck at the office working advertising magic until late in the evening.

So far my only complaint here is all the ambient noise. There are no completely enclosed offices and there is a manifest dearth of carpeting—so conversations and ringing phones and high heels on cement floors and slamming drawers and music all waft around the building in a cacophony of distraction.

But the space is too cool, the neighborhood is very downtown Chicago, I'm now a block away from my favorite fast food and my commute is waaaay more convenient, so I'm pretty psyched about working here.

Sunday, December 21, 2003

It's hard to believe it's been 15 years since Miriam was murdered

I still remember December 21, 1988, with amazing clarity. Dad had picked me up from college and we'd had a nice chat on the drive home. It was a cold, crisp day, so we were surprised to see Mom standing in the driveway without her coat when we pulled up. As we got closer, we realized she was sobbing. A month earlier, she'd had a mastectomy, and she was in the beginning of many rounds of chemotherapy for her breast cancer, so I assumed she'd gotten horrible news about a biopsy or something. I raced to her to hug her, and through her sobs, all she could utter was, "Miriam's plane went down."

Miriam was a friend of mine who had just finished a semester in London under the auspices of Syracuse University. I'd been out to visit her for a week over Thanksgiving, and we'd had an awesome time touring museums, seeing shows and exploring the city together. I hadn't realized she was flying home that day, and I was surprised to find out Mom knew not only her flying schedule but the plane she was on.

We went inside and turned on CNN—which was in its infancy—to watch the first grainy images of the wreckage of Pan Am flight 103, which had just hours earlier come crashing down in fiery pieces over Lockerbie, Scotland. And over the next few weeks and months as the evidence pointing to a terrorist bomb emerged in the media, I numbly started experiencing the bizarre dichotomy of a personal tragedy playing itself out on the world stage.

In the years since, I've befriended Miriam's parents and friends, and I've written many pieces about my perspective on the bombing that were published in newspapers and scholarly journals and read on NPR. And I've found myself at times emotionally hardened against horrible tragedies and at other times bursting into tears over Kodak commercials.

It continues to be an emotional ride, but I've gradually stopped treating the anniversary of Miriam's murder with solemn reverence. In fact, I spent six hours today unpacking and organizing my new office in our cool new downtown building. Then I spent the evening folding, stuffing and stamping 200 Christmas letters. And for the first time since the bombing, I didn't call or email Miriam's family on the anniversary. I didn't even watch the news for any special 15-years-ago-today coverage.

Am I forgetting her? Am I "moving on"? Am I growing callous? There still isn't a week that goes by where I don't think about her repeatedly, so I'm pretty sure I'm not letting her memory fade -- but I've grown comfortable enough with the loss that I'm clearly not overcome by it every year on the winter solstice. And I guess I'm OK with that.
My feet hurt all the way up into my womanly parts.

So last night's Christmas-drag-mandatory birthday party was a blast -- once I finally picked an outfit. I'd previously purchased this plum evening-length thing with a clingy metallic bodice, but it wasn't fabulous enough. Then during yesterday's errands I stumbled upon the perfect top: a clingy winter-white fake-cashmere sweater with fake marabou around the neck and wrists -- the perfect foundation for the woman who has no clue what her clothes say about her. I also got some kick-ass heels at DSW: black suede with demure straps and wicked Cruella points. Keith lent me a saucy black skirt and I added a hideous glass-grapes-with-angel-head ornament on a chain and a poinsettia napkin in my wig, and Heidi Holes was all set to spread Christmas cheer as only she can.

So about 12 of us tottered into Pepper Lounge in our heels and fake bosoms last night and just took over the place. It's funny how everyone wants to chat you up when you look like a tragic hooker with a bad case of linebacker shoulders. And after much eating and drinking and picture taking, some of us tottered off to Sidetrack to show off our finery, and we all eventually crashed at Keith's to de-drag and rub our tired feet.

Who knew Heidi and I would have so much fun? Who knew heels that look so fierce could make your feet hurt like they've never hurt before?

Saturday, December 20, 2003

Unexpected fun

I was supposed to see Urinetown with Richard last night, but he got the flu and had to cancel. I mentioned my suddenly free evening to Kelly at work, and before I knew it, she and Marty and I were embarking on an evening of adventure. Check out all we did:

1) Madly finish packing everything in our offices
2) Stop at Marty's so he could walk Lola, his beautiful greyhound
3) Have pizza and salad at Piece
4) Giggle our way through Elf, a silly, dorky, rather predictable but endlessly funny holiday classic-in-the-making
5) Stumble upon a FREE indoor parking lot in Lakeview (woo-hoo!)
6) Meet up with Anders, Chris, JP, Carl, Jimmy et al. at a funky little Lakeview straight bar
7) Crawl up a block to another straight bar curiously packed with homos
8) Collapse in bed around 1:00

Now I have a mountain of last-minute holiday errands to accomplish today before I get ready for a double birthday party for Jim and Jeff tonight. The mandatory dress code is holiday drag, and I don't have a thing to wear.

Friday, December 19, 2003

Moving Day.

The office is moving today (and all weekend) into a kick-ass new space four blocks north of where we've been for the past three years (and we'll be waaaay closer to shopping, transportation, more shopping and the newest franchise of my favorite fast food emporium). Woo-hoo!

So today is all about checking off our lasts:

- Last status meeting in our ugly conference room
- Last look at our spectacular views of the Wrigley Building, the Jewelers' Building, the western skyline and the the northern neighborhood where we're about to move
- Last pee in the short urinal
- Last whiff of the scary old fridge in the kitchen
- Last workout at the tired old gym across the street
- Last 25-cent soda from the cheap machine that unfortunately isn't coming with us

Fortunately, the only thing that will change about my commute is the considerably shorter walk between the EL and the office.

And speaking of the EL, I had another one of those almost moments on it this morning. I got on and immediately locked eyes with this really handsome guy -- the kind whose effortless beauty comes from good genes, a good fitness ethic and what appeared (in a romantic-first-impression kind of way) to be a genuinely good soul. He was in his early 40s with short salt-and-pepper hair, an earnest smile and an obvious mutual interest in me.

Of course, I did what any moron would do and I sat directly in front of him so we couldn't make eye contact or strike up a conversation or anything else you'd expect a single person with common sense to do in that situation. When he finally got up to get off the train, our eyes locked no fewer than 10 times, and he even stood on the platform as the train pulled away so we could smile at each other once more through the window.

But then again, there really is no graceful way for two people to subtly strike up a conversation on a crowded commuter train without a roomful of people listening in on your little mating ritual.

And besides, he was smaller than I am, so we couldn't share clothes. It would never have worked out.

Thursday, December 18, 2003

After another long day at work yesterday, I strolled my way up Michigan Avenue -- picking up last-minute gifts along the way -- toward Matthew's fabulous Gold Coast condo for a nice little holiday get-together. As usual, he'd decorated to the nines and the food was delicious.

And we watched my all-time favorite Christmas movie -- though the more I see it, the more hokey it becomes. It's filled with implausible plot holes, egregious continuity errors and some of Irving Berlin's weirdest songs. Dean Jagger (who plays the general), despite his impressive resume and many awards, gives one of the worst performances in the history of cheesy cinema. And Vera-Ellen, bless her heart, is all grotesque and misshapen -- says all her high-necked costumes were designed by the incomparable Edith Head "to cover her neck, which was aged beyond her years due to her eating disorder, anorexia."

But Rosemary Clooney and Bing Crosby sound spectacular together, the candy-colored sets and costumes are always a delight to see, the dancing boys are all hot, and Mary Wickes still makes me laugh Christmas after Christmas.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003


Bill and I benched 200 pounds today -- probably for the first time since I moved to Chicago.

Granted, I got only one unassisted rep, but I was able to squeeze out two more with Bill's help. Can't you just smell the testosterone?

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

If it's Monday it must be show tunes.

I met up with some chorus boys last night at Sidetrack for boywatching and show tune singing. The place was PACKED too -- mostly with straight women who are so achingly trendy they hang out at gay bars on Monday nights.

There was also this guy named Todd there. Todd goes to my gym, attends circuit events religiously, dresses like a fashion victim and shows far more interest in social climbing with the circuit set than in spending any time with me. So last night he sloshes up to me and declares through his alcoholic fog that he's "alwaysh had a crush on" me.

Now, for us teetotalers there's nothing more romantic than a drunken declaration of love -- especially from a drug user who all but ignores you when he's sober. I wasn't sure how to respond, so I asked him if that wasn't just the liquor talking -- which was obviously the wrong reception for the heroic bravery he and his Miller Lite had summoned up all the courage to show me. He mumbled something unintelligible and stumbled off in a mix of confusion and indignation, leaving me alone to ponder the cruelty of a god who would allow Madonna to be cast in the Evita movie.

And I have a feeling this is really gonna hurt my chances when I try to pledge his fraternity. Assuming he remembers any of it when he sobers up.

Monday, December 15, 2003

Bill and I had noticed that our daily workouts were getting kind of dull and uninspiring -- and that our waistlines are getting kind of flabby and unappetizing. So today was the first day of our new and improved workout schedule -- now with cardio!

We spent today's workout sweating and gasping on the elliptical and treadmill machines, and my legs are already wobbly -- and my thighs are already feeling sexier. We should be hot in no time!

Sunday, December 14, 2003

I got three standing ovations this weekend.
What did you accomplish?

The show's over, and now I can focus all my attention on my damn Christmas letter. Just as soon as I get my laundry done.

Mom and Dad drove in to see the show yesterday, and on their way to my house from the theater last night they got run into the median by a bad bus driver. They ended up blowing a tire -- and then they discovered their spare was flat as well. Whee. It was midnight by the time we realized our little saga wouldn't get resolved until morning, so I decided to forgo the cast party last night and get some sleep.

Then Dad and I got up at some ungodly hour this morning to meet the AAA guy who towed him to the Sears tire center -- but we were first in line and Sears even opened early, so we got all fixed up and Mom and Dad left for home by noon with four new tires safely gripping the road underneath them. And while we were at Sears today, I got my tires rotated -- so I'm done worrying about them for another 7,000 miles.

Saturday, December 13, 2003

So opening night went well.

Our audience cheered and clapped in all the right places, we had only minor mishaps involving fallen headdresses and weird lighting cues -- and, best of all -- we sold out! In fact, we more than sold out; we had to sell the box seats at the sides of the theater to accommodate the overflow, and we reportedly turned away more than 100 people. Woo-hoo! I hope they'll come back today for our 5:00 and 8:30 shows, which are on the verge of selling out themselves...

Now Mom and Dad are on their way in for a show-seeing visit and I'm madly scrambling to find the carpet under the mounds of stuff that has piled up in the last few weeks. ACK!

Friday, December 12, 2003

Opening night

Last night's dress rehearsal went fabulously well -- which, depending on the superstition you subscribe to, means:

1) We'll have a horrible opening night.
2) We'll have a fabulous opening night.
3) It doesn't matter -- superstition is for the weak.

I took the day off and spent it sleeping, cleaning, catching up on old Chicago Tribunes, watching The Ellen Degeneres Show and working on my Christmas letter.

Now I'm off to entertain the masses. And in this show I'm dancing in drag, jitterbugging in a muscle shirt and even singing a bit of a solo. There's still time to get your tickets -- it would be a shame if you missed it all ...

Thursday, December 11, 2003


So I left the house this morning in plenty of time to get to my LASIK appointment, but an odd convergence of weirdness and stupidity prevented me from getting there:

1) When I entered my Zip code in the LASIK doctor's Web site, I was taken directly to a page with a poorly-labeled map and what turned out to be unhelpful directions to a faraway branch that isn't even open yet. (Go ahead -- enter 60640 on the home page and the "locations" page and see for yourself. I'm not sure that the city of Riverwoods even exists.)

2) The AAA map in my glove compartment kind-of matched up with the map from the Web site, but the 94/294 intersection that both maps promised would be there simply doesn't exist.

3) The informational signs on 94 (also called The Edens just to further confuse those of us prone to be lost) are few and faaaaaar between.

So $1.00 in tolls, a quarter of a tank of gas and a wasted morning later, I still haven't had my eye appointment. Grrrrrrrr.
Tech week

Not a lot to report this week -- spacing rehearsal at the theater on Tuesday, tech rehearsal last night, dress rehearsal tonight. The show is going extremely well, and we should be awesome by the time we open on Friday.

At least we'd better be awesome -- a good 20 of my co-workers are coming during the run of the show.

Speaking of work, I had to miss our company Christmas party last night -- for the second year in a row -- because of rehearsal. But we had a company meeting yesterday afternoon, and -- again for the second year in a row -- we were named Agency of the Year in our conglomerate's worldwide network. And that position on the food chain earned us each $100 in cash.

Today I'm off to my second preliminary LASIK checkup -- this time at a much cheaper doctor in the suburbs. The doctor in downtown Chicago was gonna ask $5,000 for the procedure, and the suburban guy wants only $3,000. Both doctors have operated (successfully) on my friends, and I figure the long-ass commute is worth saving a good $2,000 -- especially since I'm going to London and Paris in the fall!

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Dabbling in the occult

Dan, Nick and I -- on the recommendation of a friend of Dan's -- went to a psychic last night. And he was amazing.

But first, I have to report that on the way there, I did the stupidest thing any reasonably sober Chicagoan can do: I managed to get on the Purple Line train going in the wrong direction. No big deal, I can hear you saying. Just get off at the next stop and get on the Purple Line train heading in the direction you want to go.

Well, yes. That's what I eventually did. Except I had to wait half an hour to change trains because the Purple Line runs express to Evanston if you get on the northbound train at Belmont instead of the southbound, which takes you to the Loop in about five short stops.

Anyway, after reading a complete issue of Newsweek, I eventually changed trains and made it to the Loop and joined Dan and Nick for our evening of black magic. And our psychic was awesome -- he just started talking as soon as he shook our hands, blurting out highly accurate statements and questions and predictions at rapid-fire pace. He nailed a ton of secrets all three of us were carrying, and we all left more than impressed.

My life has always been pretty great (to the point of being boring), so the stuff he said about me was a lot less juicy than what Dan and Nick got. And he went so fast that I still can't remember everything he said, but here's what I got written down (conveniently categorized for your reading pleasure):

Obvious generalities and/or easy guesses
- I'm German
- I'm Norwegian
- I grew up Lutheran
- I look like my dad (which isn't all that true; I look more like my mom)
- I'm in my mid-30s
- I have a friend named Dave
- I have a Jewish friend
- I had a grandparent die of heart problems
- There's a woman at my office who likes me

Amazing facts he knew all by himself
- I'm a writer
- I'm in advertising
- My mom is a long-term cancer survivor
- My dad has had back surgery
- My mom is 62 and my niece is 2
- My family is in Iowa
- Someone in my family used to live in Ohio
- I had a long-term relationship that ended amicably
- My mom was really pretty when she was young, and she's still quite attractive
- My family doesn't have many issues with my sexuality, and my dad is the coolest about it
- My sister's husband treats her well
- My sister is really pretty when she dresses up, but she usually dresses casually
- My sister was a teacher until she had her kids
- My sister's name is Jenny
- My boss and I are good friends
- I have many really great friends who openly express an interest in dating me, but I'm not romantically interested in them
- I have a friend named Scott who is really attractive and we flirt openly with each other, but we have never acted on our mutual interest
- I'm going to Europe in the fall
- Dan and Nick are going to Europe as well, but not with me
- I've known Dan longer than I've known Nick
- I have an easy time meeting people (which is actually not very true at all -- I'm pathologically shy, but once I do meet people I have an easy time making friends)

Yet-to-be-proven-true predictions
- I'll never have a weight problem (Nick got this same prediction, but Dan -- put down that doughnut! -- didn't)
- I will do very well in my career and make a lot of money
- I will live a long life
- My niece will be into ballet and my nephew will be into soccer
- My mom's cancer won't come back
- I'll start a long-term monogamous relationship within the year
- My trip to Europe will go very well

Things I figured he'd pick up on but he didn't
- I've lost five friends in violent ways -- including a terrorist murder
- I'm not religious and my family is -- which is probably our only conflict

Random things that may or may not be true
- My mom has a friend with MS
- My mom has a friend in Boston

I'm still absorbing everything he told me, but I was certifiably amazed at the experience -- and we can't wait to go back in a few months to see what else there is to learn!

Sunday, December 07, 2003


So I'd planned to celebrate surviving the just-completed week from hell with a long morning snooze on Saturday, but I was mysteriously up and at 'em by 7:00. And since I'd already written off the day as a work day, I decided to get to work putting up my tree instead. It's a modest little four-footer, and it's now loaded with lights and sitting in front of the window just glowing the holy fuck out of Christmas.

Matt had volunteered to be a lingerie model for our saucy "Walkin' 'Round in Women's Underwear" number for this weekend's chorus concert, and I'd told him I'd help him pick out something fun on Saturday afternoon at the local Boystown drag emporium. Now normally you're among friends when you prance around in lacy things or totter around in heels at this place, but there was some Boystown holiday street fair going on Saturday, and the store was crawling with funky Lincoln Park chicks and their visibly uncomfortable boyfriends. Curious stares notwithstanding, Matt left with a lovely lavender bustier/panty/fishnet set -- and I managed to snag a plum evening gown, black velvet wrap and beaded clutch from the clearance rack ... in case I get invited to an all-drag Nobel Prize reception or something. (You never know.)

Later that night I had my choice of parties to attend: a surprise birthday dinner thrown by my friend Bill, a tree-trimming get-together at a co-worker's new place or the annual Girls' Weekend in Chicago dinner I've attended since I moved here. Since the girls' weekend involved some dear family friends, I opted to join them again. The girls are Gingie (a friend of my parents' whom I've known practically all my life), her sister Janie from Nashville, and Janie's two Nashville friends Nancy and Bunny. The five of us ate at the trendy d.kelly in the west Loop and then headed over to join their Chicago friend Fern in the elegant Drake Hotel for drinks in its holiday-festooned lobby.

Who knew I'd keep having fun with them year after year -- just me and five Women of a Certain Age? Next year they're all coming a day earlier so I can take them to Boystown for some drag shopping and trendy Boystown dining.

Now it's Sunday morning, and I'm nursing a bad headache and preparing for today's 8-hour chorus rehearsal.

Friday, December 05, 2003

Another long-ass day at work.

We're working on a HUGE new-business pitch, which we assumed would suck up every last waking minute all week and this weekend too -- but I convinced everyone to stay late Friday night and see if we couldn't just get the fucker done and off our plates. And we did it! Woo-hoo!

Afterward, Dave and I celebrated over trashy but delicious mall food at one of my favorite suburban restaurant chains that just opened up a franchise a mere five blocks from the office. Mmmmm!

Now it's late and I'm exhausted and I'm going to bed. It's just another typically wild Friday night in the endless party that is my life.

Thursday, December 04, 2003

Day Nine

The cold still lingers -- even though we're well into National Handwashing Awareness Week. But I feel much better than I've felt in a long time, thanks for asking.

Last night I had the gall to sneak out of work early -- 7 pm -- to run two choreography rehearsals for next week's chorus concert. My disco elves are about 95% ready to perform (a few more run-throughs and they should be ready to shake their elfin booties in front of a paying audience). And my dancing rolls of wrapping paper kicked ass learning their entire song and committing it to memory in an hour and a half.

I'm so proud of all my anthropomorphic wards. Next show I hope to graduate to choreographing for actual humans.

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

The two best things about being sick: Nyquil and Vicks VapoRub. I've been chugging the former and slathering the latter for seven nights now, though, and it's starting to get old. I'm feeling definitely better, but I'm not all there just yet. And I have to be well by tomorrow; I have only one helping of Nyquil left, and I'll be damned if I have to buy another bottle of the stuff. 'Cause if I do, the cold wins.

And if living with the eterna-cold weren't bad enough, work has been crazy busy as well. I did manage to sneak away from the cubicle last night in time for an amazing Chanticleer Christmas concert with Matthew. If I were a groupie of any musical group, it would Chanticleer -- I think I've seen them in concert about 15 times now. And I have a secret plan involving them: Get transferred to our office in San Francisco (Chanticleer's home city), and once I'm all moved in without incurring any moving costs, quit my job and get hired to sing and tour with the best men's chorus in the world. How cool would that be?