Jason says "read this blog!"
Just when I'm about to sign the DNR papers for this blog something comes along and inspires me to write another post. One of these days Jason Segel will come to his senses and beg me to befriend him. I just hope he isn't waiting to see the 365th reason. It may take years.

365 Reasons Why...An Explanation

Well, hello there (said in a very sexy voice). You're looking quite lovely today. Welcome to my blog. Feel free to take off your shoes and get comfortable, maybe leave a comment or two. This started out as kind of a funny thing to do after I blew a phone conversation with Jason, but I've found I really enjoy writing every day and researching new and interesting things about my future BFF. In January I met Jason at a comedy club and the few words we shared only reinforced my belief that he and I would get along famously. As a dear friend of mine recently said, "why wouldn't he want to be friends with you - you're awesome!" Perhaps the 365 reasons in this blog may just convince Jason of what I already know to be true: separately, our awesomeness is great; combined, it may be enough to take over the world. If you want to be one of my esteemed followers, simply click on the 'follow' button toward the bottom of the page. Come on, you know you want to.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Reason 283

Parking karma. I must have done some remarkably kind act recently because my parking karma has been off the charts. I've been scoring free spots all over town and basking in the joy that comes with snagging a spot big enough for a station wagon in a city overcrowded with SUVs. A few weeks ago I got my mini-golf fix at Smash Putt, an apocalyptic art installation send up of putt putt in the SoDo district, which is notorious for its lack of street parking. To top it off, a Mariner's game was going on, which meant every lot in the area was charging a minimum of fifteen bucks and your first born child. Fate smiled upon me, though, and I found a free spot two blocks from the Smash Putt building, which was especially sweet since Seattle was experiencing a rare torrential downpour and my friend and I were without the appropriate rain gear. After golf, we decided to swing by a dessert cafe on Capitol Hill, a neighborhood known for its overabundance of disgruntled hipsters and dirth of parking spaces near the main drag. Once again, Gladys the parking goddess poured her love down on my Subaru, granting us a street spot right next to Dilettante. We chose a couple of decadent slices of chocolate cake and headed to my friend's house to watch Caddyshack (it was, afterall, a night of golf). He lives in a condo in a cul-de-sac in the heart of Seattle, which means there are about five parking spots on the street for people visiting one of a hundred people who live on that block. Lo and behold, a giant space was available directly across from his building! I was almost tempted to leave my car there and walk home so I wouldn't have to give up my six feet of concrete. As if those three parking experiences weren't satisfying enough, the next week the same friend and I went to the Puyallup Fair (more on that in another post) and found a free chunk of space practically inside the fairgrounds that was just perfect for his little Golf. Clearly, all of the times I have let drivers merge into my lane has finally paid off and I have been blessed with the gift of locating free parking in a city that prefers to charge an arm and a leg at the meter. You better get up here quick, Jason, before my karma runs out and it's back to circling the block twenty times. Maybe we should spend an afternoon driving from neighborhood to neighborhood just to take advantage of my luck before it disappears. I'll start making a playlist for my iPod and you start prepping your bum for endless stretches of sitting on squishy beige upholstery.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Reason 282

Coincidences. As I was driving over to my mother's tonight to mooch some pot roast and potatoes off her and watch TiVo, I realized that kismet had been running amock last night without me realizing it. The amazing and talented Jason Segel (um, that'd be you, sir) actually read my blog a little before 10pm yesterday and took the time to post a comment (which is more than I can say for a number of people I consider to be friends). While you were reading my charming ramblings I was wrapping up a first date, which sadly won't turn into a second. What's coincidental about that, you ask? Well, my date's name happened to be Jason and he was also 6'4", the exact height as a certain actor I am mildly obsessed with. The two of us took in a screening of The Princess Bride, one of your favorite movies. When Fezzick inquired if anyone wanted a peanut, I automatically thought of you, Jason, and perhaps you were thinking of me at that exact same moment. I know, it boggles the brain. As slightly insane as I sound, I do think the universe or some outside force is messing with us. I know you're a fairly literate person who appreciates the bizarre, so it's probably a safe bet to assume you've read Vonnegut's masterpiece "Cat's Cradle." In that book he purports the notion of a karass, which is basically a way of explaining all of the strange and unexpected moments that bring people in and out of our lives, forever changing the fabric of our existence. There are people who are destined to transform us, for better or for worse, and they are members of our karass. You, dear Jason, are obviously part of that crew, whether you want to be or not. The proof cannot be denied. Let me be the first to extend an official welcome. I'll laminate your membership card the next time I'm at the teacher supply store and teach you the secret handshake when we meet. I definitely think Vonnegut would approve.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Reason 281

Stress. I read an article recently (from an actual newspaper - how quaint!) about the top 10 most stressful places in the country to live and your hometown, Jason, topped the list at number two. You should move up north immediately before you develop an ulcer or suffer a stress-related heart attack. Seattle didn't make the list, probably because the constant rain lulls us into an apathetic stupor, rendering the actual emotion of stress useless. Besides, it's practically impossible to burst a blood vessel when you're surrounded by gorgeous snow-capped mountains, crisp blue water, and acres upon acres of lush greenery. The opportunity to mainline caffeine every few feet in any given neighborhood probably doesn't hurt either. If you do decide to throw off the shackles of L.A. living in pursuit of a healthier life and relocate to Seattle, Jason, I bet I could talk my mom into letting you crash at her place until you decompress and get your bearings. You'd have the entire basement to yourself, including access to the wrapping paper room and the largest collection of plastic Ziploc containers this side of the Mississippi. My mom also makes amazing lasagna and cookies that are almost as epic as mine. How can you resist? I bet you could get a lot of writing done in my childhood home - at least until I get off work and whisk you away for fun and excitement in the big city. If you do take advantage of my family's hospitality, though, you have to promise to stay away from the TiVo. One accidentally cancelled episode of "Project Runway" and my mom will kick you to the curb, my friend.

Reason 280

Irony. The first time I remember explicitly learning about irony was in a middle school english class, although I'm sure I had unknowingly been on the receiving end of the cruel literary device many times prior to that lesson. Mrs. Moeschler, my inspiring Language Arts teacher, confided to the twenty pubescent girls in my class that she had recently searched frantically in her purse for a pen to write out a check at the grocery store, but instead of pulling out a writing implement, she extracted a slender feminine hygiene product, completely mortifying the young male cashier. According to Mrs. M, irony was a result or occurence that was the opposite of what was expected - in her case, a tampon instead of a classic Bic. Not the best example, but it seemed to resonate in my 12 year-old brain. Since that day in 7th grade I've experienced my fair share of irony (and not in a puffy kitty cat t-shirt kind of way like all the hipsters hanging out in Seattle), cultivating almost an appreciation for those unexpected awkward moments. In fact, irony came knocking at my door just last night. Remember the man I mentioned I was dating a few posts ago? Well, we finally locked lips the other night and it was the complete opposite of sexy. Both of us were nervous and awkward and there was zero chemistry, despite the fact that our compatibility is off the charts. I had a sneaking suspicion that sparks wouldn't fly, but still held out hope I had found the lid to my pot as if my life was a cheesy sitcom or something. To ease some of the disappoint I assumed my date felt (because who wouldn't want to make out with me?!), I delivered a sweet card to his door two days later that contained a list titled "Things I Totally dig About You." Originally, I was going to call it "Things That Matter More Than Making Out With You" - this, in retrospect, probably should've tipped me off to the fact that I was completely ambivalent about doing unspeakable acts with this guy. Also, not a single item on the list reference physical traits; they were things I would appreciate about any cool friend. The night after the card delivery the boy and I went for a run around Greenlake, followed by a stop for frozen custard (gotta' replenish those lost calories!), and he confessed that, while he appreciated the card and thought it very sweet, his feelings for me weren't nearly as strong - he just didn't feel any physical connection. Ouch. And that, my friends, is what we call irony, the story of my life. So, Jason, you can definitely count on me to empathize when you step in a big ol' pile of irony or the unexpected smacks you in the face. I'll even tolerate a short pity party if it will make you feel better. Just promise me you won't attempt to write a song about it. The genius of Alanis can never be surpassed...don't you think?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Reason 279

Bumbershoot. Every year for the past forty years people from all over the area (and maybe even the country) have converged upon the Seattle Center (yep, where that bizarre Space Needle resides) for a three-day festival of music, comedy, literature and art. It's an apt name considering folks think my hometown sees a lot of precipitation. Ironically, almost nobody around here uses actual bumbershoots, which is slang for umbrellas. But I digress. The humongous event happened over Labor Day weekend with an eclectic lineup of musical acts ranging from zydeco to hip hop and spoken word to yodeling, and headliners included Courtney Love (who apparently played sober), Bob Dylan (everyone's favorite mumbler), and Weezer, a band that elevates nerdy hipness to a whole new level. I've chosen to skip the overpriced and overcrowded shindig the past few years because throngs of slightly drunk and sweaty people pretty much make me cringe, but if you really wanted to experience the mother of all music festivals, Jason, I think I could stomach an afternoon of subpar food, uncomfortable seats, and questionably dressed teenagers if it would make you happy. I'd even understand it if you wanted to buy a pair of sparkly fairy wings, down a couple of beers and join the drum circle that inevitably commandeers the south lawn each year. Just like Las vegas, what happens at Bumbershoot, stays at Bumbershoot (unless the press catches it on camera, of course). The organizers won't release next year's lineup until the spring, but when that day comes just give me a ring if a band or two catches your eye. I can only imagine the overwhelming joy and excitement I'll feel if the event planners finally realize they missed the NKOTB boat twenty years ago and book my favorite boys from Boston to play a set. I've been waiting ages for an excuse to throw on some neon leg warmers and rat my bangs up a foot off my forehead.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Reason 278

Patience. I'm not sure how my parents managed to cultivate a great deal of patience in me, but I am so glad they did. It probably also helps that I escaped the scourge of the generation nipping at my heels - ADHD. The ability to stand in line for eons without griping comes in quite handy at the bank, the grocery store and Disneyland, and patience serves me well every single day at work. Trying to explain to 32 sixth graders how to fold a giant piece of poster paper into twenty-four squares would be even more painful than it already is if my patience level was at rock bottom before the school day even began. I have also discovered in the last two weeks that I have the patience of a saint when it comes to dating. Two Thursdays ago I went on my first date with a wonderful man who turned out to be funny, intelligent, attractive, and just as dorky as I am - qualities that had been woefully absent in the other rejects I'd gone out with this past year. Fast forward to ten days later when I am looking forward to our fifth date. In fact, he should be en route to my house at this very moment so we can gorge ourselves on beef curry stew over rice and hold a marathon session of Super Mario Bros. on the original NES. See, I told you we were dorks. Anyway, you'd think by the fifth date this girl would have seen some action, but the closest I've gotten to hanky panky are a few tepid hugs and sitting about a centimeter away from my boyfriend candidate on the couch two nights ago while we watched a gloriously terrible 70's disco flick called "Thank God It's Friday." I'm beginning to think shaving my legs before every date is a complete waste of time. Since I am a patient lady, however, I will continue to hang out with Mr. (Possibly) Right, shooting him smoldering looks over Asian food and scooching ever closer to him on the couch until his personal boundaries are finally breached and he has his way with me (sorry mom and dad). It turns out patience really is a virtue, Jason, and I this is one virtuous person who doesn't mind waiting for things, whether they be a ride on Big Thunder Mountain or the man of my dreams.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Reason 277

Your sister. The internet is a marvellous tool for connecting to other people, finding out what's going on halfway around the world, and watching short videos of stupid people doing ridiculous things and monkeys sniffing their own butts. It also comes in handy when a certain person, who shall remain unidentified, wants to stalk a certain other nameless person and find out every inconsequential tidbit of information about him or her. Since I have a world of information at my fingertips it should come as no surprise to you, Jason, that during my quest for your friendship I've learned a bit about your family, as well. I know, for example, that your dad is a hotshot lawyer, your mom is a domestic engineer, and your older brother lives on the east coast doing God knows what. You also have a younger sister who still lives in southern California and has chosen to work in the educational trenches for nothing but sweet letters from grateful children and a pittance from the government. Since I'm a teacher, too, it makes sense that your little sis and I would get along swimmingly. Educators share a common language and can empathize with each other when a student throws up all over their shoes or a parent barges into the classroom demanding to know why little Jimmy wasn't chosen for the lead role of molar in the play about dental health. Normal folks just don't quite get our jobs, even if they pretend they do. It also helps that all teachers are mildly insane. So, if your sister and I are ever in LA at the same time and you feel obligated to entertain us both, know that we'll be more than happy to entertain ourselves. In fact, you could run some errands, do a quick interview and pick up some tasty Thai takeout and we probably won't even notice you're gone. We'll be lost in animated conversation about differentiated instruction, state standards, how exhausted we always feel, and what to do with the kid who won't stop picking his nose in class.

Reason 276

Bridges. Since you have never visited the great city of Seattle, Jason, you probably aren't too familiar with its geography. Well, without going into too much detail let me point out that folks here are surrounded by lots and lots of water. We have lakes and rivers and streams to contend with, and of course the regularly scheduled deluges this part of the country is famous for, so it was inevitable that city planners would have to come up with ways for us to move around without having to invest in amphibious vehicles (oh, how I wish the car from Chitty-Chitty Bang Bang was manufactured by Toyota!). One of the engineers' genius ides was to build floating bridges that span Lake Washington so all the rich snobs on the eastside could travel into Seattle to enjoy the theater and sports events and snooty restaurants that charge twenty dollars for a plate of cheese. Full disclosure - I live on the eastside so I can make fun of it; if you live elsewhere you better keep your mouth shut or I'll send Bill Gates after you. Anyhoo, any time you need to get into the downtown area quickly (or, conversely, want to evacuate the mean streets of Seattle for a simpler life in Bellevue), you just hop on I-90 or 520 and zip across a stretch of freeway that is literally built atop giant cement pontoons filled with air. That's right, the bridges actually float right on top of the lake, which is pretty mind-boggling when you think about it. In fact, there are only four floating bridges in the entire country and they are all in Washington state. What can your home state brag about, Jason? And no, a deadly level of smog is not impressive. When you finally realize you and I are meant to be the best of friends and then jump on a plane to fly north so we can hang out, I promise to drive you across the floating behemoths so you can marvel at the fact my little Subaru is practically sitting on top of the choppy water, seagulls gliding overhead and the majestic Mt. Rainier towering in the distance. Heck, when we get to the end of the bridge we can even turn around and enjoy the scenery all over again in the other direction. As long as I live I will never tire of the breath-taking drive in and out of Seattle and having you next to me in the passenger seat would only make it more amazing.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Reason 275

Pike Place Market. Seattle embraced the whole "support local farmers" movement way before sustainability became a buzz word and compost bins started popping up in kitchens up and down the best coast. Since 1907 local artisans and agriculturists have set up shop off of Pike street to peddle every food and craft item imaginable. The market, which also hosts a small theater, buskers of every ilk, and a seriously disgusting wall covered in chewed gum, sits in the heart of downtown and has grown to cover several blocks. As a native of the Emerald City I have visited Pike Place every season of the year, battling oblivious tourists who stop in the middle of the aisle to gawk at the fish mongers tossing salmon through the air, so I know how to deftly maneuver through the unwashed masses to get to the booths holding true treasures. I'd be happy to give you a whirlwind tour, Jason. We'd definitely snag a couple of surprisingly delicious vegan cinnamon rolls and some fresh baked bread to enjoy during dinner. The funky movie and comic memorabilia shop is always worth a walk through and no trip to the market is complete without checking out the very first Starbucks and snapping a picture with Rachel, the bronze pig that stands guard at the entrance. I'll even promise to refrain from cussing out moronic parents with double strollers and dolts with dogs (which will require great restraint). Just don't add an 's' to Pike when you refer to my glorious farmer's market. I'll let it slide the first time, but if it happens again I'll abandon you for some quiet time at the strip club across the street. My patience can only be stretched so thin.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Reason 274

Dreams. I read somewhere that listening to a person recount their dreams is at the top of most people's dreaded activity list, right above root canals and pap smears. While I understand this sentiment, I also think that my dreams may be a tad more entertaining (and bizarre) than the average Joe's, so if you ever find yourself stuck on the receiving end of my nightime tales, Jason, at the very least I promise you a thought-provoking glimpse into my twisted psyche. Now, I'm not one of those new age, crystal-toting woo-woo dirt worshipers who journals as soon as my eyelids flutter open in hopes of uncovering a hidden truth about my subconscious, but I do think dreams reflect something going on in the sleeper's life, even if it isn't obvious at first evaluation. Last night, for example, I dreamt about my three year-old niece having a major meltdown at some social function, followed by time spent at a friend's wedding where a murder had occured but he was more concerned with my attending some wild stag festivities, then the whole sequence wrapped up at school where I overheard a coworker bad mouthing me for being late to a meeting that no one had told me about, so I called her a bitch (sorry, Brita!) in front of the school board. Let's dissect that, shall we? The section about my niece is pretty straightforward - last time I saw her she threw a tantrum that registered on the Richter Scale because her obnoxious party horn was confiscated. As for the nuptuals, murder seems to be a popular theme during my REM cycles, and Dave (the groom) treats me like one of the guys, hence his demand that I consort with the tuxedoed guests. As for the last bit I admit I'm a bit flummoxed. I love the sniping colleague and can't imagine her talking smack about me in real life and, more importantly, I am never late for meetings. Oh well. I'm still trying to figure out why I was hiding from wolves on a snow-covered mountain with only Raggedy Ann and Andy to keep me company in a dream from my childhood. Any suggestions, Jason? Once we're friends, please indulge me occassionally by feigning interest while I regale you with sleepcentric ramblings. Sure, my dreams aren't worthy of the Inception treatment (and as far as I know Leo DiCaprio has never visited me in my sleep), but at least they'll provide you with a chuckle or two and perhaps even writing material. Besides, you can always take comfort in the fact that I sound like a lunatic compared to you. That's gotta' be worth something.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Reason 273

Time zone. Is there nothing more convenient, Jason, than living in the same time zone as your friends? Well, except perhaps for living in the same neighborhood or having all the same interests or having the same body type so you can swap clothes instead of dropping cash on a new outfit for that first date (no, you can not borrow my super-cute hot pink dress, Jason). Still, I do think it's rather handy that both of us reside in Pacific Standard Time so that when we start calling each other constantly to gab about obnoxious coworkers and whiny students we won't have to do any pesky math in our heads. Add three hours? Are you insane? My brain hurts from all the teaching I did today - just hand me the phone. We also won't have to worry about spoiler alerts when chatting about reality TV show finales because we will find out the shocking results of which creepy bachelor was chosen, which insane survivalist outwitted, outlasted and outplayed, or which morbidly obese fame monger dropped the most pounds at the exact same time. Shame on those east coast people who post status updates about the winners and suck all of the anticipation right out of the big night. Also, unlike those weird states where citizens have thrown off the shackles of time change and bask in the anarchistic glow of never wondering if they need to spring forward or back, Washington and California do their little time switcheroo twice a year without fail, so you and I will always experience the four seasons simultaneously (and can continue to avoid crunching those horrible numbers in our heads). Now, if we could only synchronize our sleep patterns for mornings like this one where I wake up way too early for a Sunday and need someone to entertain me until Target opens. I'd hate to rouse you from a fabulously bizarre dream or prematurely interrupt your recovery from excessive alcohol consumption the night before just because I had trouble sleeping. I guess I'll just have to harass my mother instead since she's practically Amish when it comes to a regimented sleep routine. She really should make good use of those morning hours and churn butter or raise a barn or something.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Reason 272

Pedicures. I could be way off base, Jason, but you don't strike me as a man who gets pampered on a regular basis. Well, my friend, if you have never spent 45 minutes in a vibrating chair while a mute Asian woman from some war-torn country lavishes your feet with love, you don't know what you're missing. I got my first pedicure about seven years ago so my naked toes wouldn't offend the guests at a friend's wedding. My feet were so happy (and sexy) afterward that ever since I have made it a point to schedule some time at the local nail salon every few months, even though Seattle only has sandal-worthy weather 4 days each year. In fact, just yesterday I hunkered down with three trashy magazines while a nail expert buffed and trimmed and massaged by calves until my feet were as soft as a baby's tushie and my nails were a seductive shade of red. It may be 60 degrees and raining outside but, darn it, my size tens deserve to look and feel fabulous, even if they're hidden from the world by a pair of athletic socks and some Pumas. So, the next time you've been standing around on set all day and your dogs are aching for some cheap relief, call me up and we can hit the nearest salon with outdated graphics hanging in the window and displays of fake nails on the wall that have been airbrushed with pictures of palm trees and cats. It may be the best twenty bucks you've ever spent, and if your macho guy friends tease you about your gorgeous toes just tell them your crazy best friend made you do it. Besides, they won't be laughing once they realize that all the ladies walking by are admiring your feet and turning up their noses at their nasty calloused ones.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Reason 271

Classroom decor. It's a little-known secret that new teachers don't receive their certificates until they can successfully demonstrate an ability to create eye-catching and educational displays from nothing more than butcher paper and cheap doo-dads scrounged from the teachers' lounge. Luckily, I had almost ten years of window display experience under my belt by the time I graduated from teacher school, so I passed the Martha Stewart test with flying colors. This year I threw together three stellar bulletin boards that are so jaw-droppingly brilliant my poor students won't know where to look first. Should I scan the Word Wall with its intimidating red background and jaunty swirled trimmer? Perhaps the display of book recommendations by the door is worthy of my attention. Decisions, decisions. If I was a student I'd make a beeline for the far wall where a display titled "A little friendly advice" is covered with index cards from last year's students that contain true nuggest of wisdom for anyone who wants to survive a semester in my portable. Apparently, reading while I am talking results in a punishment worse than death (who am I to argue?) and new children should prepared to be mocked in front of their peers. Yep, sounds about right. Just wait until I get really zany and start hanging things from the ceiling! Now, I can't think of a single reason why you, Jason, would need to utilize my superior bulletin board making skills, but if you find yourself knee-deep in rolls of butcher paper and have a drawer overflowing with cheap trinkets from your last twenty vacations, I will whip up a display like you've never seen. Just remind me to measure before cutting though; there was an unfortunate incident in my classroom last week where I realized the purple paper I had used for my Word Wall wasn't wide enough and I had to tear the entire thing down. My rage could be heard for miles around. It's not wise to mess with a lady's bulletin board.