Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Dinner and a Movie

On to things non alcohol-related.

You know what this means, right?

Yep, yep. My latest culinary thang is that I'd like to eat vegetarian for at least 1 meal per week. When I say meal, I am talking about me slaving over the stove one night, which provides food for 2 nights. Thus, at least 2 of my nights should be vegetarian. [M is not overly thrilled with this, but he's mostly gotten over it.] The biggest reason for me to do it is that I tend to eat a lot more veggies and healthy stuff when I eat vegetarian. I guess the meat just fills me up more, so I don't eat as much salad or side vegetables.

Last night we had the second meal in my "Vegetarian Tonight" series: Cabbage Rolls. Yeah, that doesn't sound so hot on its own, but how about "Barley -Stuffed Cabbage Rolls with Currants and Pine Nuts"? They've got feta in them, too. I like feta. A lot. Anyway, I made them last night and we both liked them! We have a little ratings system for the meals I make: not very good, eh it's okay but I would only want it every few months, it's good and you can put it into rotation, and I want to eat this at least once a week. This fell under the "it's good and you can put it into rotation" rating. I did, however, make one subsitution: I couldn't find pearl barley at TJs, but had their brown rice medley (brown rice, black barley, and daikon seeds) so I used that instead. Not to mention that the damned medley had been sitting unused in my cupboard for like 4 months.

[Oh, the first meal in the series was really good and really easy to make: Soba Salad.]

And on to the movie part of our evening. We watched This Film is Not Yet Rated. If you haven't seen it yet, go to the video store and rent it. It's a documentary and it's only 1.5 hours. The movie reveals, or at least attempts to reveal, the process behind the MPAA ratings system. Using interviews with film directors, actors, and producers as well as a private investigator, Kirby Dick explores the relationship between the studios and the MPAA. It's really interesting because the MPAA refuses to give their notes on the movies to the directors because it would be too close to censorship. But, the U.S. is the only country where the identities of the raters are unknown. Dick also reveals the appeals process, which he undergoes himself because this movie is rated NC-17. Finally, the largest issue he explores is the line between R and NC-17 and how the MPAA and the movie studios deal with those ratings.

Overall, a very cogent look at the ratings system that my parents used as a means to limit my movie watching when I was younger. (PG-13 meant I could not see it until I was 13, unless they had seen it first and approved it.) I can't talk too much about it without revealing too much. It's thought-provoking and I'm glad someone had the balls to make this movie and to talk about this subject.

Speaking of movies that would be rated NC-17 now, I'm off to start our Oppression unit in my class and we are going to segue from our hip hop music topic over the last few classes using Spike Lee's "Do the Right Thing". Woot!

Monday, January 29, 2007

Lemony goodness!

This blog has become rather liquor-centric. And I'm okay with that. I mean, really. There's not much else going on in my life. I'm not overly comfortable writing too many specifics about my teaching, so can't talk about that. I know everyone is dying to hear about the day-to-day dissertation stuff, but I just can't quite bring myself to tell you things, like the day that I found out Apollo was not really the god of the sun (and almost shit my pants). The rest of that day, I spent reading through classical Greek authors to learn about this travesty, etc.

See? Wasn't that exciting?

No, it wasn't.

So, I'm going to write about liquor. Which at least seems more exciting to me. And that's what counts.

Last week at TJ's, I bought some Meyer Lemons.

If you've never had them, Meyer Lemons are great because they are sweeter and less acidic than regular lemons. The only catch is that they have a very specific ripe season, and it's right now. Good luck finding them during the summer--believe me, I've tried. [I've recently found out they are good as container plants. This makes me want my own mini-lemon tree.]

Anyway, I bought said lemons, but in all the blood orange craziness I kind of forgot about them.

So, last night I made a Meyer Lemon Martini. mmmmm...

I used the recipe above, so I made 4 oz. of simple syrup and added the zest of 2 lemons. So, the drink is basically a couple oz. of the lemon-scented syrup, a couple oz. of lemon juice, and a couple oz. of vodka.

I think this should be added to the Bible:
On the sixth day, God made Meyer Lemons. The people made martinis from them. And it was good.

Since I have a 1 martini/evening limit (except for when the girls come over, then all bets are off), I could not try it with the basil vodka. That, my friends, is slated for tonight.

Thursday, January 25, 2007


Basil vodka = good.

I tasted the vodka last night and debated on leaving it for another day. But, since this is my first semi-success I didn't want to push it.

It's a little jarring at first to get that savory aroma right before you take a sip (it was just on the rocks), but it has a really nice just-a-bit-more-than-a-hint of basil in there. The vodka is really smooth too, which gives it a nice back end.

I found a recipe for blood orange martinis. I think I'll be trying that with some basil-infused vodka! The basil may be really minimized by the mixers, which will indicate I should have left it another day, but we'll see.


Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Don't let the Potato Vodkas get you down!

I talked with my mom on the phone during my office hours (to which NO ONE EVER COMES!) today. She was asking if I had found Mason Jars and then wanted to know again why I wanted them. My not-really-officemates (it's just these 8-foot high cubicles separating us so they can hear everything) heard me explaining the failed experiment, including my use of Persian cucumbers as opposed to the other kind (as well as my admission that I should have used regular cucumbers or checked the infusion earlier since they are stronger). I have a new rule for vodka for infusion: if I would not be able to shoot it (like if it smells like potato ass), then I should not use it. I think this is a good rule.

I was asked to let them know when next I will be speaking with my mother ("You talk to your mom about doing shots of vodka?" Yes, I do. She'd do 'em with me, too!) so that they could be sure to be there. Apparently, the one-sided conversations I have with my mom are quite entertaining, especially the part where I talked about cucumbers.

I also realized that I spend far too much of my time thinking about liquor. Oh well.

On to more writing about liquor!

BTW: I had cucumbers on my salad last night, and I had a hard time eating them because the smell reminded me of the far more horrid smell of the vodka. This is sad. I love cucumbers.

After taking a few days off and having to go to TJ's today anyway, I decided to try my next experiment: basil vodka. The girls are coming over on Friday and basil vodka takes 2-3 day to steep, so we should have some sort of infusion goodness. Either that or I will cry. (Like I wanted to today at the library when they forced me to unpack my entire backpack. Now, I'm murderous.)

I bought some regular vodka, this time. It looks pretty good (Black Sea vodka from TJ's for 15 bucks) and when I got it home I smelled it. Results: it smells like nothing! yee-haw!

The supplies:

I mixed it all together:

And now I will wait. I have it in the fridge right now, but I'm considering moving it. I will start trying it tomorrow. I found another cool site about infusions (R you especially will like it) via another website and it has some neat ideas.

I'm still thinking about that blueberry/tonic/sugar/basil-infused vodka/maybe mint drink but I know not everyone is fond of blueberries (I know, the horror).

So, I bought some of these.

I don't know if it will taste good, but it certainly sounds interesting--an herbal screwdriver! Plus the color should be awesome.

Oh, and it was only 2 dollars for that 2 pound bag. Maybe they were picked before the freeze?

Vodka update

Well, I think I may have to throw it out.

Potato vodka + cucumbers = shitty smelling thing that makes me want to gag

I have learned a valuable lesson: potato vodka, while so very Russian, should not be used when infusing your own vodka--unless you are using Chopin, which I'm really glad I didn't because then I'd have to drink the infusion based solely upon its cost.

Some of the internet lied about potato vodka being better. The main issue with it is that it smells weird/bad. And we all know which of our senses affects taste the most, yes?

Back to the drawing board with better vodka! At least I've got enough gin for martinis while I wait.

Speaking of martinis, with a bit of trepidation (but obviously not a lot) I bought the cheapo gin at TJ's. It's pretty damned good! No Hendrick's, mind you, but almost like Sapphire. Just be sure to add a shade more vermouth and leave a little coating of ice water in the glass.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Life's short and hard, like a body-building elf

Yep. Drunken, dry-humping, gyrating Canadians. That was my evening, one January 12th, 2007. (I've been listening to too much Prince, as I almost typed 1999.)

The scene of the crime:
So, there's a reason that DC Mollie and I ended up there. See, we ate at a great restaurant in the Marina and then went to the Mission for a post-prandial drinky-poo. We tried to go to Blondie's but it was packed beyond belief and we were THIRSTY. So, we walked across the street to this place. It was cool and all, with velvet "paintings" as an integral part of the decor, but we felt old there. I mean, we're at the cusp of our 30s. We are so 30 (well, she is for another 5 months, and I will be in 6 months), but damn! everyone there looked like they had gotten in with a fake ID. We finished our drinks, left, and decided to go back to the area around our hotel.

So, we BARTed back and wandered about looking for a martini and a place to sit. We went into a few places and left, usually because they were too bright. Really. Once you notice lighting, it's hard to NOT notice it. These places should have been dark and brooding, hiding the clientele's imperfections, cloaking everyone in a reddish-orange glow. Oh, not here. These places had the lights turned up bright, like a garish Toulouse-Lautrec painting: women shrieking with drunken laughter with bright red gums and beige-ish teeth suffused in the yellow-ish lights. It was uncomfortable in those places, to say the least. We kept trying out bars and then discarding them, just as quickly. Oh, and we didn't want to pay a cover charge (which we later realized was our big mistake). We had already gone to the Gold Dust once that evening, but after being told it was last call at our très chic hotel's bar, we decided to deal with it.

So, we found a seat at the Gold Dust Lounge--a palatial red velvet throne-looking type deal. We ordered--DC Mollie got a beer and I a vodka martini. And the fun began. There were actually two bars: one at which they served alcohol, the other behind which the band played. There were revelers hanging on the bar, really enjoying the music. We got our drinks and settled in to people watch. That's when we actually listened to the music. I don't even know what song they were playing at first (DC Mollie figured it out), but one of the singers was singing with this really out-of-tune falsetto voice that is almost indescribable.

That song ends and the other singer guy asks, "So, didn't someone request a pirate song?" The people around the bar, who we have now found out are Canadians, all start shouting "Argghhh!" Great. The band launches into this bizarro song that is so not a pirate shanty and does a strange little falsetto arpeggio in the middle of the first verse. Wha?

Meanwhile, there is this couple "standing" in front of us who are probably late-40s to mid-50s. I use the quotation marks because they were only sort of standing. They would have been cute if they hadn't been so damned gross. They were wearing matching black leather jackets and black pants (we assumed they had gone shopping and felt that these outfits were oh-so-urban). They were totally making out and he's feeling her up and shit while we are sitting less than 7 feet away. As the minutes tick by, it was getting more and more obvious that they really needed to go back to their hotel room. Prophylactic, sir?

At this point, DC Mollie and I are cracking up at the utter absurdity of it all when the band finishes their "pirate song" and then start in on "Magic Carpet Ride". This other drunk Canadian "standing" (being supported by) the bar gets way into the song and starts "dancing" (stomping in place like a 3 year old). Leather Couple start dancing and their friends create this circle around them. Leather Chick must have been so excited by the attention that she threw off her jacket and started gyrating and doing all sorts of moves that are scary when done by both young girls (see "Little Miss Sunshine") and women who are my mom's age. (Sorry, Mom. If you saw her, you'd agree.)

During all of this hilarity, we realized why our seat had been empty when the bar was packed full everywhere else. We were in between the doors for both bathrooms. In typical fashion, the boys bathroom smelled far worse. So, while the delicate strains of "Magic Carpet Ride" graced our ears our noses were subjected to a flogging every time a guy had to piss. And most of them were drinking beer. We think that someone left the door open at one point because the expected remission of the smell did not happen. Mmmm! Toilet water vodka martini, please!

We finished our drinks and decided that it was time to turn in. We made it to 1:30 am and had one hell of a laugh at the last place.

See, there are people who would be really bummed or pissed off at the bar...especially when with a friend they rarely see because they want things to go well so badly. I have to admit that at one time in my life, I was that person. Now, however, I realize it is far more fun to just sit back and laugh; these are the moments that I'll remember. Dinner was great, and I'll remember it, but not with the clarity of our time at the Gold Dust. It's probably a maturity thing, but there it is.

It was great to see my friend and to add yet another memory to the list of absurdities we've accumulated over the last 8 years. Thanks, Mollie, for one hell of a weekend.

Thursday, January 18, 2007


Pray to the student health gods for me...

I chipped a tooth over the weekend--a molar on the right side. I'm going in today to see what the dentist says. It could be as small as a minor shaving away of the sharp edges. Or it could need as large as a multi-thousand dollar crown.


Edit: Thanks, guys. He sealed it there. It was 67 bucks for everything, including the x-rays. He also said that the filling in that tooth is problematic and if I ever have increased sensitivity or any pain that I have to call them immediately. I guess I'd better start saving for that. :)

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

I'm sneakin' up like celery, yeah I'm stalkin'

Well, I had a fun-filled weekend in the city (that's San Francisco to you) with DC Mollie.
I think I'll post tomorrow or something about the crazy dry humping Canadians at the bar with the shittiest band I've ever heard or the lady at the Macy's visitor's center who thought a wine bar was "what they are calling it [bars in general] today."

And I learned two things, both of which I already knew, but didn't KNOW.

1. I love me some cucumber-infused vodka.

So, I'm making me some. The girls are coming over soon for a little slumber party without their mans for a 'Arry Potter marathon and we're going to drink. (Hence the slumber party.) My plan is to have some good cucumber vodka drinkie-poos: like a Cucumber Cooler (lemonade with cucumber-infused vodka).

So, I followed this recipe, using a potato-based vodka. The problem is that the people of the internet do not agree on which type of vodka should be used for an infusion. Some feel it is like mulling wine and that we can use whatever cheap-ass vodka we please; others think we should only use the better vodkas. Some feel that potato-based vodkas give the purest flavors; others feel that potato vodka tastes like ass and does not take on the added flavor as well as grain-based. The potato argument stuck in my head (something about residual sugars in the potatoes, blah blah) so I bought the only potato vodka TJ's had.

Here are my supplies:

I used the Persian cukes because they taste WAY better than those crappy English hothouse dildo thingies. R would be pleased--the potato vodka is made in Vienna.

I peeled the cucumbers because I felt like it, removed the seeds, chopped them up, and threw them into the Mason jar. Added vodka, shook the jar a little bit, and hid it in a cupboard (my cool, dark place).

It is a thing of beauty:

It should steep for 5-7 days. I'm supposed to start "tasting" it on Day 5. Let's hope it tastes good!

If it works out, I think I might make some basil-infused vodka, too. I'm thinking of a drink with some basil vodka, lime juice, blueberries, and some sugar/simple syrup. Maybe with some soda water. Mmmmmm.....

See, some of my friends do crafts, I infuse liquor. It floats my boat.

2. I love mash ups. I've known this for a while, but have yet to really explore them beyond enjoying them in the background while sitting at a bar. They are one of the most inspired uses of pop music out there. When done well they can be sublimely ironic.

Best use of irony: DJMaxEntropy's "Short Skirt, London Bridge"
-It's Fergie's "London Bridge" vs. Cake's "Short Skirt"
-the lyric interpolations are awesome: "How come every time you come around my London, London Bridge wanna go down like London London London? I want a girl with a mind like a diamond. I want a girl who knows what's best (oh shit!). I want a girl with shoes that cut and eyes that burn like cigarettes. I want a girl with the right allocations, who is fast and thorough and sharp as a tack..."

Most fun: Lenlow's "Kanye Mahna"
-It's Cake's version of the Muppets' "Mahna Mahna" vs. Kanye West's "Gold Digger"

Best for exercising: Lenlow's "Apeboy"
-It's Enya's "Sail Away" vs. Prodigy's "Smack my Bitch up"

The one that cracks me up every time I hear it: Rebeldj's "Real Big Time"
-It's Mannie Fresh "Real Big" vs. Peter Gabriel "Big Time" vs. Jean Knight "Mr. Big Stuff"
-Lyrics: "I'm on my way, I'm making it. House real big, cars real big, dick real big, everything real big. I've got to make it show. Yeah!"

There are a ton more that are just as good, like the mashup of Rob Base vs. Prince's "Kiss"...but I could spend all day writing about them (and not my dissertation) so I think I'll leave it at that.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

One of the Worst Profs I Ever Had

While writing the last post, I was reminded of my crazy-ass Italian teacher from undergrad. So, I figured I'd write about her.

[I must warn you. This post is full of digressions. Sorry. I can't help it.]

I must start by telling you that my mother graduated with a degree in Italian from the same institution of higher learning I ended up attending (full academic scholarship = no choice but to go). Back in the archaic days of the mid-90s, for some reason my U. was still using the face-to-face method for class registration for the first quarter; after that, it was all by phone. Needless to say, I got screwed with my registration time and was one of the last of the 900 students in my class to go into the gym, running from table to table to get stickers saying I was in a class.

I go to the Italian Department table with every intention of signing up with this amazing professor both my mom and dad had for Italian. Unfortunately, through some weird set of circumstances that I still do not understand to this day, I ended up in La Pazza's class. (We'll just call her that, 'kay?)

La Pazza is a highly respected, award-winning poet in Italy. I know this because she won some award while I was taking her class and some of the best days of that quarter were when class was canceled because she was in Rome.

Anyway, I signed up for Italian I, this language that I had always wanted to take but they didn't offer it at my high school, so I got really screwed and took French instead. I actually wanted to take Spanish, but they put me in French. I wonder if I called my high school's registrar and told her what that led to--me getting a PhD in which I must know the French language--if she would not feel so bad about sticking people in their second choice classes? Of course, it took me, oh ten years to realize the good in having taken French. Okay. Moving on. I swear.

I take Italian I and we're in this great little 19th c. building in which my Dad says people used to smoke cigars and cigarettes during class when he was there, with windows overlooking these expansive gardens full of rose bushes and no air-conditioning. It's warm outside for most of fall quarter, so we all get into this classroom on the third floor and immediately open the windows. Inevitably, La Pazza would sashay through the door covered from head to toe in flowing garments, with about 20 scarves on and she'd immediately shut the damned windows, mumbling something about it being "chilly, no?" 'Scuse me? It's like 90 degrees outside and you're cold?!? And then we sat there for the longest hour and ten minutes of my life. Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Baking in that room smelling of stank and boredom.

We tried to convince her over the 3 quarters (yes, 3. don't ask.) that I was in her class to no avail. She was cold and would have those windows closed, even if Dante himself told her she should open them because she'd move up a couple of levels in hell.

And there were those would-be glorious days. Those days when we finished early and we all looked at her with hope brimming in our eyes. "Per piacere, La Pazza! Let us out early! Class is over in 7 minutes anyway!" Ah, those days! She would just look about the room somewhat blankly, after checking her watch and then...and then! She would tell us to turn to the next chapter and read quietly. Until the goddamned class was over.

But then, I learned the trick. Oh yes. I hated that class so much (not Italian, mind you, just the class) that I learned that as long as I regularly attended the first and last 2 weeks of class and any midterm/quiz day, I could still get an A. I mean, yeah, I had to study and shit on my own, which was fine. As long as I did well on my tests, I got an A. It was better than sitting in that room and I still went for more than half the class days (she says defensively). I know, I know, I was a bad student who was not upholding the Jesuit ideals of learning, but don't hire people like that! Sheesh!

That is why to this day, I will NEVER make my students stay if we are done with everything we have to do. Fie on all of those people who say you must keep them so they do not expect to get out early all the time! I refuse to subject others to such cruelty.


Tuesday, January 9, 2007

All Meat, All the Time!

When I was in undergrad, I hated those "icebreaker" activities. They were lame and I'd have rathered the professor let us out of class early than to do one. Now that I am teaching a "workshop" kind of class, I use these hated activities on the first day.

To try and be as "fun" as possible, I first had the students talk to someone next to them and find out their basic information: name, where they're from, their major/what they want to with their life. Then they had to introduce their new friend to the class. Yeah, yeah, fairly typical. But, I had them do that first so that everyone had some basic information to go on for the very exciting "Human Scavenger Hunt" that was the grand dénouement of our icebreaking.

So, I gave them this list of 20 statements and they had to find someone who fit each one and write their name next to it. I specifically told them they needed to "get up off their asses" for this one. They actually did, impressively enough. All in all, it worked out pretty well! And then I dampened their spirits by making them write for 30 minutes! (evil laugh)

Things I learned about my students:
  • there is only one person born in June (my illustrious birth month) in my class. And none who were born in December or January.
  • only 1/3 of my class can roll their tongue.
  • in California, at a fairly liberal institution, NOT ONE OF MY STUDENTS IS VEGETARIAN OR VEGAN
I guess I should just bring trays of meat for them, if ever I decide to bring them food, as they were very excited when they realized they were all carnivores.

I think they're going to love my t-shirt, when next I wear it!

Sunday, January 7, 2007

Coming to a University near you!

The DAY OF DOOM* is tomorrow.

I have to teach tomorrow, too. Curiously, this will be the first time in a few years that I've taught on Mondays/Wednesdays.

I guess I'm just a Tuesday/Thursday kind of gal.

Wish me luck! Last quarter sucked big fat ass, so I'm hoping this one will be more of a "broken vacuum cleaner" variety of suckitude.

yay for me!

*I specifically used Courier because it's the largest of the fonts and is therefore used by students the world over to make their papers fit into the page requirements of their assignments. Oh yes, I'm onto them.

Friday, January 5, 2007

Non-standard word (consider revising)

Oh, Microsoft Word, how you are crazy. Let me count the ways...

Yeah, yeah, everyone's always ripping on Word and I'm usually just thinking "whatever, at least it's not a typewriter." But, it's finally my turn to complain.

I'm writing an abstract for a conference and I write this phrase (as part of a comes after a semicolon):

He acts only as an arbitrator, thus acknowledging there is an authoritative power he cannot supercede.

Oooo, pretty...right? But wait, what's that there? There is a green squiggly line underneath the final word! I right click the word to see what is wrong as I just KNOW I spelled it correctly. And whaddya know? It's not a standard word, apparently.

Ummm, kay. Sure.... **backs away slowly**

Hey, pssst...the people who put together the Word grammar check are really stupid. I mean. I knew they were dumb, but that's pretty bad.

Edit: So, R informed me that even though many of us spell supercede with a "c", the dictionary has it with an s: supersede. That still doesn't explain why I didn't have a red squiggly line underneath the word (for a spelling mistake). Green squigglies are for grammar or formatting. So, I'm not as smart as I thought I was, but the Word people are still stupid. We all win!

Monday, January 1, 2007


So, we did this whirlwind trip for New Years. A friend from high school was getting married 6 hours away from where we live. Because we live in California it is not that odd to drive that far to go to a wedding. (Note that a plane ticket from our small-ass town would cost approximately $400/person to fly 350 miles. Screw that. So we drove.)

Anyway, we drove to Sacramento (or Sacratomato, my name for it since I was a kid). I was tootling on down the road at 85 mph just inside the city limits when I saw a freeway sign. It said things like "Placerville x miles", "South Lake Tahoe x + 100 miles", and then the kicker: Ocean City, MD 3037 miles. I looked at M and said "What the fuck? Ocean City?"

I must digress. See, we met while we were living in Washington DC and early in our relationship, we had an ill-fated trip to Ocean City one August weekend. We stupidly drove out there without a hotel room for a fun weekend. We looked around a bit and visited a friend of mine who had a condo there. He wasn't offering for us to stay with him, so we went out for dinner/drinks and took off to find a room. It turns out that everyone and their uncle decided to go to Ocean City that weekend and there was not a room to be had in a 90 mile radius. WE DROVE TO DELAWARE, PEOPLE.* The nearest room available was in Annapolis. So we dejectedly drove home at 2 am, arriving around 3:30, vowing that we would NEVER do that again.

End digression.

Pretty bizarre, eh? Well, if you go to this website it tells us that Sacramento is the western-most point on Highway 50, which connects (who guessed it?) Ocean City, MD with said city.
Wasn't that exciting? I thought so.

On to other, even more exciting things. The wedding sucked. This was one of my really good friends from high school and we've obviously grown apart over the last 12 years or so. But--and this is where my Catholic guilt kicks in-- nothing trumps weddings and funerals; you just gotta go. I dragged the husband up there and there is no one there from my hometown, even though the bride had told me there would be a "contingent".

Does not "contingent" mean more than me and my husband (the latter of whom is not, technically, even from this country)???

We sit down at our assigned table and see that it is completely empty, even though the other tables were filling up. We go get some hors d'oeuvres and whaddya know, we sit down and see that there are 3 more place cards at our cozy table for 10. I see the bride talking to these 70-80 year old people while looking right at us. Yep. Those were our tablemates. I looked at M and said, "Screw this. We're going to spend New Year's Eve with my sister, who is spending it alone, rather than sitting here with people we don't know. Not to mention that we were placed at the "left-over table".** 5 people at a 10 top. Pshaw. And we gave them Riedel Martini glasses for a gift. Sigh.

At about 8:45 p.m., we drove back to the Bay Area at lightning speed. Arrived around 10 p.m., drank Australian merlot and Napa champagne, ate kettle corn, and watched Batman Begins with my sister while she railed that her internet didn't work so she couldn't send an email to her Australian boyfriend. It was awesome. Or at least way more awesome than that wedding would have been.

*I actually liked Delaware (Rehoboth) and would've stayed there, if a room had been free.

**I spoke to the bride before we left, talking about how M wasn't feeling well and "so sorry we must go." She said she was surprised we had made it and asked if we had been spending time at my parent's place, which is only 2 hours away (apparently the only reason she could think of for us attending the wedding). I didn't say anything; I didn't have the heart to tell her we drove 6.5 hours just to go to her wedding.