Friday, February 24, 2006

Pennies from Heaven

My coworker Dave has this unique habit of tossing pennies. Sometimes he’ll just be walking past your desk and *plop* there’s a penny there in his wake. When he announced his intention to quit, R and I began to wonder what special gesture we could make to tell him we’d miss him.

Today he started his day beaned in the head by a penny thrown by one of my coworkers—oops! After spending the day receiving pennies from all of us, he returned from his exit interview to find “Good luck. We’ll miss you!” written in pennies on his desk.


Thursday, February 23, 2006

Lipstick engineer

I almost left my lipstick in the conference room after our Engineers Week activity with middle school girls this morning. Can you imagine what my colleagues would've thought when they reached in for a paper clip and came up with lipstick instead?

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Sunday, February 19, 2006

You know you're an engineer when...'re watching ice dancing and you say, "Wow, the physics of that is amazing!"



Do you ever distinctly remember reading something--maybe a phrase in an article or a whole entry on a blog--and find yourself completely unable to locate it when you go back? Do you ever wonder if maybe it was all in your head to start with?


Thursday, February 16, 2006

Note #1 to Future Boyfriend

Watching last night's episode of Gilmore Girls, I noticed something I would like to share with my future boyfriend. What better place to preserve this observation for posterity than my blog?

So, Future Boyfriend: once we've been together for a tv season, a kiss on the cheekbone is a sexy and intimate yet allowable (parent appropriate even!) PDA.

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Tuesday, February 14, 2006

My Lloyd

Say Anything was named the most romantic movie since 1975 by Entertainment Weekly. Even the Washington Post has commented on the popular obsession with this movie. But I've never been enamored of this movie--probably because before I ever saw Say Anything, I dated my own Lloyd Dobler.

Like Diane I was an over-achieving high school senior and like most seniors, she and I both looked ahead and saw an uncertain future as we made the transition from high school to college. Having someone’s unconditional love as reassurance during that transition time encouraged us both to leave home and challenge ourselves.

I met D when he was still spending summers working at the movie theater, even though he was a high school teacher nearly 10 years my senior. He had aged out of his trench coat phase before I met him and at first he was just someone to safely flirt with as I broke out of my shy mold. After I replaced him as the object of my affections, he began to subtly pursue me.

We started seeing each other at Easter and our relationship became public in June after I graduated. After our summer together, I went away to school and our connection continued through expensive hours on the phone, visits and special packages that arrived for me. Sometimes they were just letters—sent with humorous return addresses to make me smile before I even opened the envelope. Once he sent flowers, but more often they were mix tapes complete with detailed explanations of why he included each song. Included on the first tape was “In Your Eyes” by Peter Gabriel from the romantic climax of Say Anything.

During our second summer together D continued his mission to show me classic 80s teen flicks, but despite talking about it, somehow we never saw Say Anything together. That August I broke up with him as we sat in his car—paralleling another pivotal Say Anything scene.

Once, months after we broke up, he told me that he’d already planned when he was going to propose to me and when we were going to get married. No boomboxes outside my window or taped letters would be able to bring me back to him because by that point I’d already moved on from my Lloyd.

Unlike the women quoted in the Washington Post article, I’m not still looking for Lloyd—now I’m hoping for Jake Ryan.

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Monday, February 13, 2006


Over a year ago, I was a friend and accomplice when my coworker R left her then-husband. He wasn't my favorite person and they didn't seem happy together--it wasn't exactly a surprise.

Then today my boss didn't come into the office. Seems he is going through the same thing, only he doesn't want it to turn out the same way. It puts his solitary and downcast moods last week in a new light.

It also shakes my blind optimism and faith that some people manage to make good marriages just a little bit more.


Thursday, February 09, 2006


Have you ever read a book that made you wonder if the author got into your head, somehow exposing your wishes and worries? That's how I felt Sunday night as I stayed up way past my bedtime finishing Prep in only the third sitting.

Prep follows Lee, a girl from the midwest, through her high school years at a boarding school on the East Coast. While Lee is a scholarship student, most of her feelings of isolation originate from her fear that she can't fit in. Lee's journey through school reminded me a lot of my high school and college experiences--the great friends I made, sometimes lost and sometimes kept; the wonderful roommates I had; and the fear I often had that everyone was watching me.

I grimaced when Lee pushed away the object of her affections, settling for a private affair rather than the possibility of a relationship. I gasped when I saw heartbreak on her horizon and wanted to stop her when she pushed him away again. I know how rare second chances are. But don't think that this book is about romance--it is about growing up, knowing your place, and finding out you didn't know your place at all. We all see skewed reflections of ourselves in the funhouse mirrors of adolescence.

After I finished the book, I laid in bed exhausted but held my eyes wide open. The dim shadows of my bedroom were the only thing keeping me from closing my eyes and waking in Lee's life or even worse, waking up back in my teenage years. As I lay there, I knew that reading a book that touched me so personally should have taught me something. More powerfully I realized that the lessons Lee learned as the book ended whispered of epiphanies I've had in my life and lessons I still struggle to hold onto.

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Wednesday, February 08, 2006


What is the point of using the speakerphone feature on your cell phone while driving if you’re holding the cell phone right in front of your mouth?


Sunday, February 05, 2006

Super dream

You ever have that sudden flash of memory, remembering a dream that you've forgotten?

I had that experience chatting with a coworker during lunch on Friday. As we discussed today's big game, I remembered that Wednesday night I had dreamt that this was all a misunderstanding and that this weekend's big game was the actual AFC championship. I only wish.

Regardless of the absence of my favorite team, I celebrated the Super Bowl with traditional American fanfare--lots of chips, veggies, dips and of course, some chocolate for dessert. In preparation for guests, my fridge looked like the beer section of a liquor store.

Now the game has come and gone, and really the best part was the episode of Grey's Anatomy after.


Thursday, February 02, 2006

The wood began to move

Conversation upon noticing that my coworker had a plant as big as me just hanging around her cube.

Angie: What’s up with the new plant?

Coworker: They’re trying to give me some extra privacy so they got me this plant.  Then it became this thing, so people keep coming and moving it around.

Angie: Ah, I thought maybe Birnam Wood was advancing on your cubicle.


Wednesday, February 01, 2006


To the driver that I’ve parked next to the past few days:

Please note: your Suburban is not a compact car, so stop parking in the compact spaces.

Your compact car-driving neighbor


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