29 December 2007

"This is your [my] life"

Last night I went to an impromptu gathering of folks I went to highschool with - most of whom I have not seen (social networking sites notwithstanding) in 10 years. It was a TRIP! Playing catch-up with a handful of folks, mostly musically-minded people-was fun and funny. We all met up at a bar and drank and reminisced and filled each other in, met spouses, told our tales. It was fun.

Today, I spent several hours helping my mom label all of the family pictures we have in our hallways. We have wonderful pictures of our family, grandparents, great-grandparents and various and sundry other members of the family tree hanging out on the walls. It was a lot of fun to re-hear stories and learn new tidbits about family long gone.

This week also brought the knowledge that my friend (and Ty's cousin) P has been moved from where we thought he might be staying over in the Sandbox. It's pretty scary to think about - and I know his parents are freaked out. P did not get a chance to call home on Christmas, but (Praise the Lord) he did get a chance to call his parents yesterday. He's not allowed to say what he's doing or where exactly he is, but said that he was doing fine. I guess that's good news!!

I also got to see my friends J & G (who live in Dallas) and A (who lives in CO). These folks are some of my oldest and closest friends, and it's always good to see one another. We tend to pick up just where we left off, which is one of those weird but wonderful quirks of old, established friendships. It's akin to finding a favorite sweater in the back of the closet, putting in on, and remembering why you loved it so much in the first place.

Now...it's time to play dominoes!

25 December 2007

Merry Christmas

Wishing you a Merry Christmas! We woke up to a magical snowy morning, here. A white Christmas, indeed (and it hasn't stopped coming down, yet).

We opened our stockings and our gifts by the fireplace. Had a hot breakfast and tea, and now we're getting ready to go to lunch at a friend's house.

Hope you are all having a wonderful celebrations of your own.

Love you!!!


22 December 2007


Whomever came up with this baby product is a genius.

My friend K, who just had her first baby, has been chronicling the entire adventure (pregnancy on) on her website. The most recent installment includes the difficulty of changing diapers without getting peed or pooped on. (She and her husband had never changed a diaper before). An adventure, indeed.

Well, Sibling and I had sent some of the afore-linked items to our cousin when they had a baby boy, and I couldn't resist sending some to K. I picked the ones with airplanes, since her husband J is an airforce pilot.

Good times.

I don't know's on third

been runnin' in circles, conversationally speaking . . .

A: Hey, [MezzoSF], when do you get home?
Me: Tonight, late
A: So, hey, J and T and I are going up skiing Sunday...but we were thinking why don't you and your brother and G join us and we'll go up Saturday afternoon, get up there, have dinner, chill out catch up etc etc. Then the three of you non-skiiers can go home early Sunday to beat the traffic.
Me: uh...okay. That would be fun, but I have to clear it with my parents. My dad's working all week (yeah - that's another story), so his only time off is the weekend.
A: OK call me ASAP when you know.
Me: I'm getting on a plane in like 20 minutes. I'll call you in the morning.
A: OK, but ASAP. G's going is contingent on you going.

ME: Okay, I'm in but Will is not.
A: Okay - let me call you back after yoga and after I talk to J.

A: uh, well, J & G weren't as committed as I thought. So they're not going. T and I might still go.
Me: Oh. okay. Well. Are we still on for karaoke tomorrow with everyone?
A: I already made plans for tomorrow - no one told me about karaoke. So, if I get out of dinner early, then sure. Call T and ask him.

Me: Hey, are we still karaokeing tomorrow with the gang? Since the mountains are not happening and all?
T: What? I didn't know that fell through.
Me: Oh. Well you better call A and talk to him about it and then call me back.

T: Yeah okay yeah we're not going to the mountains. So yeah, karaoke's still on. Let's meet at my house at 5pm and then go to dinner and karaoke
Me: Okay fine.

T (via voice mail): So, yeah, A and are I still going skiing on Sunday. So...we should be back and ready to go by 6. So...come on over for 6pm.

ACK. I can't wait to see what chaos Sunday brings!

18 December 2007

C'est bien ca

So, I got to pass an enjoyable time tonight with my new French friends from Sunday. Turns out the place they are staying in SF is 2 blocks from my house!! So, I went over "pour un gouter" which literally translates "for a taste": small appetizers, aperatifs and the like.

I raced home after work and ran to the Lucky, determined not to show up empty-handed (a faux pas en France). I found a decent looking bouquet and a bottle of wine and made my way to their house. It was really nice to be accepted into their home - even if it wasn't their *actual* home. Also invited were some of their friends from France who moved to SF 3 months ago. Between the two families, there were seven (7!) kids! I was like....WHOA what universe did I land in?

In any case, we had fun chatting, eating, drinking and laughing. I had an especially fun time with their kids (who'd a thunk?) and learning of their impressions of their many travels throughout the States. It was a fun night!

17 December 2007

Je suis ravie!

I was so happy yesterday to make the acquaintance of a French family who happened to be visiting our church yesterday. They had 4 lovely kids, and also Galadriel was in town, too! It was French Fest 2007! We had a fun time chatting and talking about differences between our cultures. I was having a ton of fun speaking French and just getting to hear about their trip around the world (yes - with 4 kids!)

So, it was very fun. They have a blog chronicling their adventures. I would post a link - but it's all in French. If you'd like it, send me an email.

16 December 2007


I'm watching TBS (good Sunday afternoon activity) and trying to compose my Christmas letters. Anyways. "My Best Friend's Wedding" came on and I like this movie. But I had forgotten that it's 10 years old. And the things that clued me into the vintage-ness of it all:

-Julia Roberts' cell phone had a pull-up antaenna
-"If we aren't married by the time we're 28 years old, let's get married." I don't remember that line as such. . . I was thinking they were talking about reaching at least 35. And now that I am at the *ahem* ripe old age of 28, myself, I couldn't help but crack up outloud and practically spew my water across the keyboard.

And OMG one of Cameron Diaz' crazy Southern-cousins is played by Rachel Griffiths. Who knew??

13 December 2007


It's been an interesting week. Fun, surreal, hard, restless, and tiring.

The highlight - by far - has been news of the birth of Clark Garrison, the newest addition to my friend Katie's family. K and I have been (and have remained) close friends since we were 5 years old. Such joy!!

Monday night's performance was . . . *interesting* . . . to say the least. I have a top-10 list about it, which I'll post here shortly.

I have a sort of penpal at the moment (my friend in Kuwait with the Army), and I find myself saving up stories throughout the week to write in a letter. It's funny...and I worry about repeating myself in a new letter, because obviously - unlike email - you can't just go back and look up what you wrote before. I don't want to sound any crazier than I already am like a crazy person...hahaha...it's funny. And fun!

12 December 2007

Proust's madeleine ain't got nothing on me . . .

I found out this evening that the mother of my closest friend from childhood (until about 6th grade) passed away very suddenly from a stroke.

Even though it has been many years since we've seen each other or even spoken . . . I have several years of memories inextricably linked to her and her family. For various and sundry reasons, ALL of these things have the ability to bring me immediately back to that time - that lifetime - so many years ago:
David Bowie, Labyrinth, Ouija boards, Michael Jackson, Pink Floyd, Lip-syncing, pet pigs, parakeets and cockatils, Afghans, wicker rattan floor mats, red clay kitchen tiles, false eyelashes, castanets, flamenco dancing, guitar music, tying fly fish flies, hammocks, sprinklers, weeping willows, Barbie dolls, seances, the B-52's, "One Night in Bankok", Girl Scouts and Scout camp, 5th grade talent show, backyard chicken coops, sleepovers, jumping on the bed, cats sleeping on my head, hanukkah gifts, lighting a menorah and turning on the Christmas tree together, long braids, picking apples, supernatural stories, fortune-telling, a small scar on my ankle, Bethesda, overdoses, gothic art, Caddyshack, Mel Brooks, R-ratings, The Temp, Sea Monkeys, Shaving my legs for the first time, jumping into leaf piles, record players, Beetlejuice, roller skating in the basement, playing dress-up . . . and on and on.

My heart goes out to C, her siblings and her father. I wish I could be there to mourn with you this Friday - but I will send my prayers and love from here.

07 December 2007

opera & psa

I just came from Madame Butterfly at SFO with AZ for an early-birthday outing. It was a most enjoyable performance - which is high praise from me, indeed :) I actually had goosebumps! But then again, Puccini! What's not to love? The woman singing Butterfly was wonderful...great voice, great actress. Pinkerton...meh. The role was a little bit of a stretch for him, vocally. Their little boy was a scene stealer - soo cute! And Suzuki was perfect in her part, and sounded great.

I am not going to go into full opera-review mode at the moment (I am too sleepy) but can I just say that the people next to me would NOT stop coughing, chortling, sniffing, etc etc. It was driving me crazy! ack!

People! Don't go out to see a show with lots of quiet, intimate moments if you're the kind of sick that involves noisy bodily funcions and/or cough drop wrappers! Can't we enforce this courtesy, legally? Pretty please with pink sugar on top??

That is all for now.

04 December 2007


I seem to have lost four days! After strictly sticking to my NaBloPoMo one-post-per-day standards, I reached December 1 and threw all that "discipline" out the window, it would seem.

Never fear, I am still here. (In Colorado to be exact).

Since I've been home I've:
-had a sinus infection
-lost my voice
-had the stomach flu

I'm chalking it all up to the following:
-no sleep
-talking for hours on end
-being around other people with the stomach flu
-spending hours in the hospital (around sick people...ew!)
-allll of the above

It has been a long - but ultimately good, I think - couple of weeks at home. No vacation, that's for sure, but a necessary time at home. I'm glad I've been here, but I'm ready for a massage :)

It was almost 70 degrees here today - and it's supposed to snow on Thursday. CRAZYness, I tell you. CRAZY.

-my camera (maybe I'll take a picture of Dad's incision yet
-my laptop (am using mom's - can't get her wireless to work on mine)
-my singing voice (not so good - I have a show in less than a week)
-my calendar (this has been nice)

30 November 2007


Sibling comes to town tonight - his flight doesn't get in until almost midnight, but I will be there to get him! I am so glad. He just has no idea what this week has been.

During my many trips shuttling back and forth between home & the hospital in my dad's SUV, I've had the company of XM radio. I found a *ridiculous* station called "SpecialXMAS" and it's been great.

It's Christmas music. Nontraditional and comedic songs only.

For example:
Leroy the Redneck Reindeer
Santa Got A DWI
Indian 12 days of Christmas ("5 bollywood fiiiiiilms . . . ")

My favorite so far has probably been the rip off of the Bing Crosby/David Bowie Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth duet. Instead of "pa-rum-pum-pum-pum", it was "and pour me some run"...etc etc.

I've enjoyed listening and cracking up on my travels.

29 November 2007

it is so bedtime

We are all exhausted...mentally, physically, everything. God is good though, and He has sustained us thus far!! And shall continue to do so.

I think I have to put myself on vocal rest. The combo of no sleep, dry air (altitude!) and almost non-stop phone talking is starting to take its toll on my voice.

I am soooo looking foward to a real sleep and not getting up in the middle of the night. Mom, Uncle Horn and I are all staying in our own beds at the house - dad is doing that well - but we'll head out to be at the hospital for 8:30am.

I have chocolate for dad (Maison du Chocolate from Aunt F!!) and we have fudge for all the ICU nurses. Good times. AND Sibling comes in tomorrow. We are all VERY much looking foward to that.

whew. and Amen!


thanks for all the kind words, prayers, texts, calls, etc etc etc. you are all diamonds and i appreciate you :)

gotta get a little sleep in before another long day.

28 November 2007

Pray for Dad today!!!

Here is a picture of dad getting "liquored up" on our cruise to Alaska.

[Full disclosure: that was a funk-nasty pina colada - he was just posing with it for giggles . . . ]

27 November 2007


Just a short while ago, while trying to be helpful, I managed to explode an entire canister of whipped cream all over the place. All over me. All over the counters. The floor. The cooktop. The rug. Seriously.

But it was soooo funny, too. I cleaned it up laughing hysterically, on the verge of tears. A fitting dissolution into a safe hysteria.


I am so thankful for God's blessings in the form of friends, family, and prayers. From my family to all of yours - thank you all for you support.

Today is dad's last day at work, and then tomorrow we'll leave this house at 4:30 am. He has to be there at 5am, two hours prior to the scheduled surgery time. I'm going to *try* to go to bed early tonight...we'll see if that happens or not :)

26 November 2007

Lucky number 7

So, yes, my dad has definite OCD tendencies...he taps the coffee pot, turns all the mug handles *just so*, taps the dials and knobs in the car as well as on his alarm clock. Mostly, we rib him about it a little bit here and there, and he is good humored, but still the rituals remain.

Well. Let's kick it up a notch. I think maybe because he's nervous, he's a little more "in" to his rituals - or at least letting us know about them. Since I arrived on Thursday, I have been let in on not ONE but TWO other 'rules' as they were.

In showing me where all the various and sundry important papers are kept (savings, retirement, wills, living wills, life insurance, etc), he showed me his check book. There are ALWAYS seven (7) rubber bands around the check book. And he made sure to point this out, several times. I asked him what happened if there were not exactly 7, and his response was "well, you just don't want to find out." So. That's that.

In taking out the garbage tonight (dad's usual chore - but he's not allowed to lift more than 10 pounds), I was tying the garbage bag shut, and asked if I did it correctly. "Well, no. Not exactly," was the reply. I asked what was wrong. "Well. I usually tie it seven (7) times." I was like REALLY? Seven again?

And his reponse to me was, "Why do you think we live at 77 [xyz] Drive??" And honestly - I *think* he was kidding around with me - but I'm not sure!

I'll make sure to have seven squares of chocolate ready for him to eat when he's finally able to eat something after his surgery :)

25 November 2007


From the Texas Heart Institute Website:

Biological [replacement heart] valves, which are made from animal tissue (called a xenograft) or taken from the human tissue of a donated heart (called an allograft or homograft). Sometimes, a patient's own tissue can be used for valve replacement (called an autograft). Patients with biological valves usually do not need to take blood-thinning medicines. These valves are not as strong as mechanical valves, though, and they may need to be replaced every 10 years or so. Biological valves break down even faster in children and young adults, so these valves are used most often in elderly patients.
You and your doctor will decide which type of valve is best for you.

During valve repair or replacement surgery, the breastbone is divided, the heart is stopped, and blood is sent through a heart-lung machine. Because the heart or the aorta must be opened, heart valve surgery is open heart surgery.

What to Expect

The operation will usually be scheduled at a time that is best for you and your surgeon, except in urgent cases. As the date of your surgery gets closer, be sure to tell your surgeon and cardiologist about any changes in your health. If you have a cold or the flu, this can lead to infections that may affect your recovery. Be aware of fever, chills, coughing, or a runny nose. Tell the doctor if you have any of these symptoms.

Also, remind your cardiologist and surgeon about all of the medicines you are taking, especially any over-the-counter medicines such as aspirin or those that might contain aspirin. You should make a list of the medicines and bring it with you to the hospital.

It is always best to get complete instructions from your cardiologist and surgeon about the procedure, but here are some basics you can expect when you have valve repair or replacement surgery.

Before the Hospital Stay

Most patients are admitted to the hospital the day before surgery or, in some cases, on the morning of surgery.

The night before surgery, you will be asked to bathe to reduce the amount of germs on your skin. After you are admitted to the hospital, the area to be operated on will be washed, scrubbed with antiseptic, and, if needed, shaved.

A medicine (anesthetic) will make you sleep during the operation. This is called "anesthesia." Because anesthesia is safest on an empty stomach, you will be asked not to eat or drink after midnight the night before surgery. If you do eat or drink anything after midnight, it is important that you tell your anesthesiologist and surgeon.

If you smoke, you should stop at least 2 weeks before your surgery. Smoking before surgery can lead to problems with blood clotting and breathing.

Day of Surgery

Before surgery, you may have an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG), blood tests, urine tests, and a chest x-ray to give your surgeon the latest information about your health. You will be given something to help you relax (a mild tranquilizer) before you are taken into the operating room.

Small metal disks called electrodes will be attached to your chest. These electrodes are connected to an electrocardiogram machine, which will monitor your heart's rhythm and electrical activity. You will receive a local anesthetic to numb the area where a plastic tube (called a line) will be inserted in an artery in your wrist. An intravenous (IV) line will be inserted in a vein. The IV line will be used to give you the anesthesia before and during the operation.

After you are completely asleep, a tube will be inserted down your windpipe and connected to a machine called a respirator, which will take over your breathing. Another tube will be inserted through your nose and down your throat, into your stomach. This tube will stop liquid and air from collecting in your stomach, so you will not feel sick and bloated when you wake up. A thin tube called a catheter will be inserted into your bladder to collect any urine produced during the operation.

A heart-lung machine is used for all valve repair or replacement surgeries. This will keep oxygen-rich blood flowing through your body while your heart is stopped. A perfusion technologist or blood-flow specialist operates the heart-lung machine. Before you are hooked up to this machine, a blood-thinning medicine called an anticoagulant will be given to prevent your blood from clotting. The surgical team is led by the cardiovascular surgeon and includes other assisting surgeons, an anesthesiologist, and surgical nurses.

After you are hooked up to the heart-lung machine, your heart is stopped and cooled. Next, a cut is made into the heart or aorta, depending on which valve is being repaired or replaced. Once the surgeon has finished the repair or replacement, the heart is then started again, and you are disconnected from the heart-lung machine.

The surgery can take anywhere from 2 to 4 hours or more, depending on the number of valves that need to be repaired or replaced.

Recovery Time

You can expect to stay in the hospital for about a week, including at least 1 to 3 days in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

Recovery after valve surgery may take a long time, depending on how healthy you were before the operation. You will have to rest and limit your activities. Your doctor may want you to begin an exercise program or to join a cardiac rehabilitation program.

If you have an office job, you can usually go back to work in 4 to 6 weeks. Those who have more physically demanding jobs may need to wait longer.

Life After Valve Replacement

Most valve repair and replacement operations are successful. In some rare cases, a valve repair may fail and another operation may be needed.

Patients with a biological valve may need to have the valve replaced in 10 to 15 years. Mechanical valves may also fail, so patients should alert their doctor if they are having any symptoms of valve failure.

Patients with a mechanical valve will need to take a blood-thinning medicine for the rest of their lives. Because these medicines increase the risk of bleeding within the body, you should always wear a medical alert bracelet and tell your doctor or dentist that you are taking a blood-thinning medicine.

Even if you are not taking a blood-thinning medicine, you must always tell your doctor and dentist that you have had valve surgery. If you are having a surgical or dental procedure, you should take an antibiotic before the procedure. Bacteria can enter the bloodstream during these procedures. If bacteria get into a repaired or artificial valve, it can lead to a serious condition called bacterial endocarditis. Antibiotics can prevent bacterial endocarditis.

Patients with mechanical valves say they sometimes hear a quiet clicking sound in their chest. This is just the sound of the new valve opening and closing, and it is nothing to be worried about. In fact, it is a sign that the new valve is working the way it should.

24 November 2007

A world away

My good friend (and Ty's cousin) P called today. He ships out for the Middle East on Monday with the Army. I'm really glad he called - it was good to talk to him for a little bit. It's weird to think that for 15 months (at least!) he's going to be in the desert somewhere, with his life on the line.

Living in SF, where there is a monthy protest against The War, I find I can be desensitized to the whole thing...I just don't even think about it anymore, because I feel like I'm constantly surrounded by anti-war, anti-American, anti-almost-everything ALL THE TIME. I guess personally, I am not *for* the war - but I *DO* support the troops.

Knowing people involved gives some perspective. Another close friends' husband is in the USAF...He is safely home - praise the Lord - and about to welcome their first child into the world!

So. I will do my best to support P as he's out there a world away . . . all we can do from home is pray, write letters and send Fudge (well - my mom's going to send fudge!). I encourage those of you who know folks in the forces to do the same...


At our carols and lessons rehearsal on Wednesday, I had a conversation (with the hilarious CT) about Casseroles. Did I grow up eating them? Did I cook them now? It's a generational thing, I think - our parents and parents' parents made them often.
So - in answer to her questions, yes I did grow up eating them, but no, I had never made one myself.

We went on, talking about how bad they can be for you, as they all call for "CREAM OF [fill in the blank]" soup, cheddar cheese, and lots of starch...but also how creative one can be with casseroles...adding random things you might never think to put together.

Well. Fast forward to this morning, in my mom's kitchen. She asks me - "Do you like King Ranch Chicken?" and my response was to immediately start giggling. King Ranch Chicken is indeed one of those aforementioned casseroles. Then, my mom asked if I would please help her make them. THEM. We made THREE of them. One for lunch today, and two to freeze. I was cracking up the whole time I was grating cheese, chopping celery and opening the cans of (lo-fat) cream of mushroom soup.

I tried to explain what was so funny, but I'm not sure if I was making any sense. As soon as we finished, I sent an email to CT - I knew she'd crack up hearing the story after our Wednesday conversation.

Oh man. Good times. I can smell it cooking in the oven now...!

23 November 2007


I'm sitting by the fire right now. It is COLD here!!

Went to Borders today - found a gift for my dad (per his request) - an Ike & Tina Turner box set of CD's. I'm glad it's something he wants...other than chocolate, he's hard to shop for...

Mom and Dad are doing okay. Mom's in a bad mood though - her nervous energy and fear surrounding Dad's forthcoming surgery do not for a happy household make. I told her today that I wasn't going to last the next 2 weeks if we couldn't come to some sort of happy agreement in which she didn't take out all of her anxieties on me. Seriously. At this point - it's not even my dad I'm worried about, but my mom...ack.

Anyways. In other news, we're trying to track down a Wii...but that is no easy task!!

22 November 2007

Sights seen

Wednesday night: ATM run to Lucky supermart. While there, saw several young bachelor types stocking up on Thanksgiving necessities: 6 packs of beer and cases of beer. Oh. And did I mention the beer?

Thursday morning (though it was so early it may as well of been Wednesday night): SFO airport. Woman running back towards security. Same woman walking back a few minutes later, suitcase now in tow. I can understand...it *was* 4:30 a.m., and I know I hadn't had *my* coffee yet, either.

Thursday mid-morning, M.S.T.: DIA airport. A string of SUV's dusted with snow, slowing winding their way along to Passenger Pick-up.

Thursday afternoon: Greenwood Village, CO. Family and Friends!

Happy Thanksgiving!!

21 November 2007

Scattered thoughts

I'm *almost* done packing. AZ is picking me up at 4am for my 6am flight. EARLY.

I'm - mostly - looking foward to being at home. But it will be hard, too, in it's own way.

I love Borders. And coupons. And coupons for Borders.

Life is funny. I know many funny people.

I would like to get a new computer. Mac vs PC...any thoughts?

Happy almost Thanksgiving, everyone!

20 November 2007

My socks are too small

They are those little anklet socks - and they have only been covering half my foot all day long. They slipped off of my heels early this morning, and I just haven't taken my shoes off to adjust!


Here is a hilarious get-the-season-kicked-off video for you all, courtesy of AZ. I hope you laugh as much as I did...Enjoy!

19 November 2007

Shy people of the world - get thee to a drama class!

This last Friday, I came home from work, turned my cell phone off, put on my pj's and wrapped up in blankets. I was ti-red. It had been a looong week in many ways, and I was just drained.

So. Fortified with hot tea, soup and my issue of People's "Sexiest Man Alive" issue, I hunkered down for a wild and crazy Friday night . . . not!

Yes - so the magazine was mostly fluff, but there was one little quote I really enjoyed. In the "Sexy Nerds" section (I know - I am just diggin' myself a hole . . .) Reggie Hayes, who stars on the CW's Girlfriends, answers thusly in response to the question, "Why Do Geeks Act?"

It's the perfect job for shy people. They tell you what to say, pick out your clothes and comb your hair.
I thought this was interesting; this is how I feel a majority of the time, as a performing artist. Seriously? I'm really shy. Stick me behind a podium and ask me to speechify? Hell, no. Stick me in a dress cut down to there and prance around on a stage stark, raving mad? SURE, sounds like fun to me!

What's the difference, you ask? The difference is that on stage and in character - I am free to be whatever and whomever I choose.

I am not restricted to the confines of my physiognomy, physicality, personality, credo, nor age.

There is no pressure of people-pleasing, making a good first impression, over analyzing, or "OMG did I just answer his question with something that doesn't make sense"?

I have time to research a character; time to get to know a persona - almost a courtship of sorts.

When I have the opportunity to play the same role more than once, meeting up with that old character is like reuniting with an old flame; I remember the times past, but as we've both aged and changed, new layers emerge.

You ever have those times when you think of a snappy comeback to something somebody said two days ago? Well, in theater - those comebacks are written *for* you! There is always invective ready to be flung caustically across the boards. Brilliant! How often have I wished for that in my real life?

And, as probably any drama coach worth his/her salt would say "Half - if not more - of acting is listening and responding". Shy folks - we spend most of our time listening to people, especially in large groups, especially with unknown people. As a child, other kids used to think I was stuck up, because I wouldn't talk to them. In reality, I was terrified and didn't know what to say.

Those of you who know me - and know me well - may argue with my self-assessment of being shy. I've become less so as I've aged, and as I've learned to have a public persona. But I'm still quite private. My freshman year of college, I went away to a school where I didn't know anyone. I made myself - I had to physically choose - to become more outgoing, or I would never have any friends. It was a distinct moment; an inner dialogue held standing outside of my dorm room in Snyder Hall; a moment I will never forget.

. . . . so if everything is already "there" and in place (for us shy folks, as it were) what makes theater such an art? Why are the performing arts so competitive? The magic comes when a performer is able to take what they are given and make their character come to life. To transport/convince/trick? the audience into believing that the person they see onstage is - without a doubt - a pirate king, a madwoman, a son in love with his mother, a star-crossed lover.

Bringing someone from being one-dimensional, written in a screenplay, libretto, a score, to a being a living, breathing, bleeding, soul-filled person. Therein lies the talent and skill of an actor. It is not something that is fully attainable - but rather, a constant pursuit . . .

18 November 2007

I wish I could find my camera cord, and other ramblings

I have some really funny backstage pics from our show....the LL Gala
"Harry Patter and the Willing Suspension of Disbelief, or A series of Unfortunate Musical Numbers". It was a trip of a show - very silly, crazy, chaotic fun.
- - - - -

I can't believe this is Thanksgiving week, already. KOIT radio station has started playing their 24-hour Christmas music, and I have started listening to it a little bit. I like the old school Christmas singers (Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra) and yes, even Barbara Streisand's Christmas album makes me gleeful (I know, I know)!
- - - - -

Saw "Lars and the Real Girl" last night with AZ. It was totally quirky and odd - but heartwarming, too. If quirky and odd is your thing - go see it :)

Things I've learned (today)

1. That Air Supply has A Christmas album

2. Where to locate the ice skating rink at Embarcadero Center

3. That it really is worth turning off one's cell phone from time to time

4. That the smell of cigarette smoke through the stage door can be strong enough to cover up the smell of - for example - backstage flatulence

5. That the Embarcadero Cinema is still located in EC1 (I can never seem remember that)

6. That I can pull off a beehive wig

16 November 2007

401 Foto Friday

According to my blogger dashboard, this is post number 401. Cool. And, as I am crazy tired from my strange week (yeah - it's also been tech week for my show...ha!), I am submitting a photo for my blog today.

Last week when I went to the dentist, she took an impression of my teeth and made this mold, so that I could have flouride trays made for me. mmm. flouride. Anyways. The office doesn't keep the clay molds onsite, because they take up too much room, so I am now the proud owner of my own set of teeth. Twice over.

Ta da:

15 November 2007


My coworker and I had to make an "emergency" run to Copy Station today (that's a whole other story).


MM and I had two large boxes of stuff to take to Copy Station, so I drove my car down to California street. Now, during the work day, there metered parking spots on California are only for commercial vehicles. Being that my precious Volvo is NOT technically a commercial vehicle so to speak, I elected to stay in the car while MM took the boxes in.

"Do you need me to come with you?" I asked.
"No, I got it" MM said as he shut the door.

So. I find myself in the car listening to the radio, playing games on my phone, checking voicemail, etc. About 20 minutes go by. Copy Station must be a happening place today...and our copy job is quite complicated. I resume my game-playing.

20 more minutes pass.


I decided to call MM's cell phone. He doesn't answer. I wait 5 minutes. Get out of the car and
*stare* at Copy Station - a half a block behind where I'm parked. I try MM's cell again. No answer. I get back in the car. I start to think . . . and call the office.

Me: "Hi, it's [MezzoSF]. I'm still waiting for MM."

Coworker X: "What do you mean?"

Me: "Uh...I'm at Copy Station. What? Is MM THERE?"

Coworker X: "Well, yeah!"

Me: "WHAT? Put me through to him...!"

So, yeah. I sat in my car (nary a block from Tuesday's Incident) for a solid 45 minutes. For no reason. What.so.ever.

Good times.

14 November 2007

I know I'm stubborn, but . . .

I'm the woman with the volvo.

Tuesday was rough . . . I'm glad it's over.
Praising the Lord for:
His Mercy
My Volvo automatic locking doors
My Volvo strong-ass windows
My sibling, coworkers and friends for their support and prayers!
(Sibling and I haven't yet told the parents . . . they are under a lot of other stress at the moment. I guess if I end up testifying in court, I'll have to tell them at some point...hmmm.)

13 November 2007

Two pair

I have a show this weekend at the Herbst. It's a Harry Potter send up, and I'm playing Ivana Trump (a.k.a. The Witch Le Fay). We have our first run with costumes tonight, so I've been getting all my stuff together for that.

After much experimentation, pushing, pulling, tugging and strapping down, I now have my final costume in order:

-Long, black, low-cut dress
-Sparkly, spangly velvet cape-of-many-colors
-Sparkly, spangly costume jewelry (from my grandma)
-Black heels
-Black tights
-Platinum beehive wig (complete with bees!)
-Two pairs of socks

12 November 2007

Go Team!

On many days each week I do the crossword puzzle over my lunch hour. As such, I was sitting outside today doing just that when I overheard the following snippet of conversation:

FDC #1 (Financial District Clone): My little joke about him being an athletic supporter didn’t seem to go over too well.

FDC #2: Yeah…I didn’t really get it . . .

Don’t feel too bad, Mr. FDC#1 - *I* thought it was funny!

11 November 2007

Checklist for a rainy weekend afternoon

Rainy weekend afternoon . . . check

Red Wine . . . check

Arrested Development on DVD . . . check

Rona and The Queen . . . check and check

Fashion show . . . check

Girl talk . . . check

Cupcakes . . . check

Combine all ingredients and gently mix. Gradually add red wine until saturated. Fold in three eggs cupcakes. Bring mixture to a boil giggle. Let sit for 3 hours.

I can't sleep. So I'm taking tests on the interwebs!

ESFJ - "Seller". Most sociable of all types. Nurturer of harmony. Outstanding host or hostesses. 12.3% of total population.
Take Free Jung Personality Test
personality tests by similarminds.com

Brain Lateralization Test Results
Right Brain (46%) The right hemisphere is the visual, figurative, artistic, and intuitive side of the brain.
Left Brain (54%) The left hemisphere is the logical, articulate, assertive, and practical side of the brain
Are You Right or Left Brained?(word pair test)
personality tests by similarminds.com

10 November 2007

Just a little rain . . .

(not kryptonite, whew!)


Lucky (née Albertsons) was hosting flu shots this morning. I get one every year - and have for as long as I can remember - because of my asthma. It gets out of control scary when I have the flu.

I arrive at Lucky at 10 on the dot, and was the second person there. Until this crazy lady on a cell phone cuts me off and steps right in front of me. I didn't say anything to her - she wouldn't have heard me anyways, jabbering away like that. The nurse and I made eye-rolling contact.

I get my paperwork, finish it quickly (before Cell Phone Woman does...who's still chattering away and not filling out her form) and step back to the table. I sit down in the shot chair and suddenly there are like, 10 people waiting around for a shot. Ten people, most of whom - if I just streched my legs out - I could kick.

So, there I am, rolling up the arm of my STAR WARS shirt, getting prepped, swipped and stabbed with ten pairs of eyes staring. I'm not gonna lie - it was a little awkward. I looked at one lady and shrugged just before the nurse stuck the needle in my arm. The woman seemed a little embarrassed to have been "caught" staring at me. I was proud of myself, though.

I didn't even flinch.

09 November 2007

Lessons learned

It is almost impossible - practically Sisyphean - to play Scrabble in Italian when your letter tray holds 7 consonants and hence, no vowels.

Despite the 28 years I've been on this planet - there will still be times when I forget about half of those years and act 14. Especially around boys men.

Grande green teas have caffeine in them. Especially those enjoyed at approximately 9:00 p.m.

What have *you* all learned this week?

08 November 2007

Mug Shot

This is my favorite mug at work.
I have no idea who Robert is - by the time I started, he was no longer working here - but behold! His legacy remains.

I just really the shape of this mug, and how it fits nicely in the hands. I'm always sad on days when I get to work and another coworker has snatched Mr. Robert out of the cupboard before me.

I've placed Robert next to the Eiffel Tower. (For scale).

07 November 2007

Pirate Jesus

So, we're doing a "Lessons & Carols" Christmas program at our church (December 16 during morning service - in case you're interested...) and we had our first staging rehearsal tonight. The way things are set-up, we've little vignettes interspursed with musical offerings. AZ's roomie Lisa is directing, and she is awesome!

Yours truly is Mary; AZ is Elizabeth and Ty-lar is Joseph. Other friends (read: comedians!) round out the cast of characters, and tonight's rehearsal was a lot of fun . . . and highly amusing.

It started off with Ty-lar wanting to be Pirate Joseph because he happened to be wearing his stripey pirate pants (something about Mary being a lusty wench was thrown around). And CT decided Ninja Herod would be appropos. Once we got to the part where Mary magically has a baby, I was in tears with laughter. How in the *world* do you make a baby(doll) appear without actually having a "birthing" scene...?! Our scenery is simple and scarce, we don't have a lot of bulky clothing items in which to camoflauge the baby, and I was practising with a football-shaped bundle of gold-lame' costume. There was much talk of having the baby thrown in from the wings; Ty-lar having it strapped to his leg under his robes; me carring it diguised as a mystery bundle tucked under my arm, only to be magically revealed as a baby later on. I think we finally decided upon having the baby hidden behind a bale of hay. [Oh Look! A baby! Behind that bale!!

AZ and I were giggling our way through lines as Mary & Elizabeth. First AZ (as directed) read them like some wisened, aged, mentor, with NO emotion whatsoever. Like "kit" on nightrider or something. And then she put on an old lady yiddish voice. It was HILARIOUS. Meanwhile, running commentary from the peanut gallery of spectators did not make it any easier to keep a straight face!

But by the grace of God endeavor we to set this nativity scene. It will be great once we all know what we're doing! But the first crack at things was really funny. I am looking forward to doing this with my friends!

06 November 2007

Post-script: AdSense

I don't know if - by the time I post this entry - that this will even still be relevant...but oh well...whatev!

Upon posting my last entry on "HMS Pinafore", the Google AdSense machine put up an ad for "gaywheels.com". This made me chuckle! There's a joke in there somewhere about musical theater and gay men . . . but I'm too tired to mine that gold. It just made me giggle when I saw that.

That is all!

H.M.S. Pinafore: redux

So - it's about 99.9% confirmed that our summer production of H.M.S. Pinafore has been hired to put on a private show in December for a small, private audience. Of two people.

A couple weeks ago, someone (we'll call him Bob) called the LLHQ to enquire about getting a fully-staged, fully-paid cast (including chorus) performance of Pinafore WITH orchestra in a theater. When our flabbergasted Artistic Director informed Bob that that would cost tens of thousands of dollars...Bob basically said "okay".

So, after much scrambbling of emails and coordinating of schedules, LL is renting the Julia Morgan in Berkeley on a random Monday night, and we're going to revisit Pinafore. I think we have 1 rehearsal planned.

I'm still just . . . in disbelief of all of this. As long as Bob's check clears the bank this week, we're on! I'll have to find my score...

05 November 2007

Paint it black

I've had Paint it black stuck in my head for about 3 days now. I heard it on the radio Friday, and it has been with me ever since.

I love this song. I don't even know what half of the words are, but I love the music. It's a great, catchy, sexy melody. It's minor in key (harmonic, I think?), which I've always preferred to major keys, for the most part. And there's a sitar. You can't go wrong with sitar/rock fusion. (Hello, George Harrison).

I was watching the afore-linked live clip of the song from the '60s. And DAMN if Mick Jagger just isn't hot-to-trot what with his shagtastic hair, gleaming eyes, and big lips. I mean...this is nothing new...everyone knows he has "IT"...whatever that elusive "IT" is that gives people star quality. "IT" is one of the major reasons the Stones are still around.

So, since starting this blog entry, I've been listening to Paint it black, over and over, whilst going back and forth between blog, emailing, facebook and youtube. (ADD, much?) Do you ever have songs you listen to over and over? Or that you could listen to over and over again? Complete albums, perhaps? I used to do this a lot more frequently than I do know. Mostly, it's just time constraints, not anything else, which keep me from repeatedly listening to something in particular. Sometimes it's the lyrics which speak to me; sometimes just the harmony or melody; other times both...but no matter what it is, I find myself compelled to keep listening. Like, there's a jog in my brain that just can't get enough (Satisfaction, natch) To listen...to soak...to drown (metaphorically speaking, of course) in the sounds emanating from my speakers.

Other songs which have drawn me in like this at one point or another in the last 20 or so years:

Barber: Adagio for stings (performed by voices)
Cake's cover of I will survive
Peter Gabriel: In your eyes
Coldplay: Politik
Simon & Garfunkel: Bridge Over Troubled Water
Radiohead: Creep
The Beatles: Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (the entire album)
Salsa Fresca (the entire album)
Chopin: Nocturnes...all of them as a set
Una furtiva lagrima from L'Elisir d'amore
Buena Vista Social Club: Dos Gardenias para ti
Cesaria Evora: Beijo roubado
Janis Joplin: Piece of my heart
U2: With or Without You and Love Rescue Me
R.E.M.: Shiny Happy People (Oh yeah - this was on a cassette tape. Loved it as a kid.)
Bobby Day: Rockin' Robin (Also on cassette)
Meditation from Thais
Big Bopper: Chantilly Lace
Bei mir bist du schoen from the Swing Kids soundtrack
Billie Holiday: Strange Fruit
Blues Traveler: Hook
INXS: Kick (the whole album)
Barbara Streisand: A Christmas Album (I know, I know....)
Juanes: La Camisa Negra
Marc Anthony: No me conoces
Aerosmith: Dream on
Steve Miller Band: Joker
Amalia Rodriguez: Com Que Voz

So, this list is longer than I anticipated it would be...but I just kept thinking of definitive songs...there are more, I'm sure, but I'll be up all night if I don't stop somewhere . .

04 November 2007

Not-so-silent Awkwards


We all ride them - probably several times a week, if you live in a metropolitan area, like myself. And, most of the time, I am in the elevator with strangers.

There is the normal, run-of-the-mill awkward moment of do I make eyecontact? Smile? Say hello? Just keep my head down and stare at the paneling? We've all been there.

But is there anything *more* awkward than riding an elevator with 4 other people, two of whom are making out with each other? Now, I'm all for the elevator snog . . . but not when there are OTHER people on the elevator with you.

People. There is NOWHERE to run when you are trapped in an elevator - and there is nothing less appealing than the smacky-smackity-suck of strangers snogging behind you.

03 November 2007

I hope it's not genetic

In conversation with my mother yesterday:

Mom: I'm ready for you to have a boyfriend. Someone you can go to the movies with.

Me: Uh. Okay.

Mom: Are you a member of xyz online dating service? Because I heard they sent out thousands and thousands of rejection letters to folks they couldn't find matches for!

Me: I've experimented with them in the past.

Mom: OH! Well. Were you one of the people who received a letter like that??

Me: *Sigh* No, mother.

Mom: Oh. Well. I just worry about you - it just can't be safe meeting up with people from the internet.

Me: . . .

(This coming from the person who - unbeknownst to me at the time - signed me up for an online dating site. I kept getting email from random people, and I had NO IDEA WHY for seveal months).

Okay . . .

. . . does embedding a youtube video actually count as a blog entry? I'm going to go ahead and say that yes, yes it does. That counts as my first entry for NaBloPoMo...National Blog Posting Month. I don't think I could ever participate in the National novel writing month (which...I believe Jennifer did last year)...but Blog Posting, I think I can handle.

One post a day. Every day...no matter what?!? I'll try it, I'm game.

In the interest of full disclosure . . . I *am* counting this as my Friday, November 2nd post...even if it is after midnight already. I'm still awake - not having gone to bed yet, so it feels like it's still Friday night to me. So there. I'm backdating this time - but I'll try my best not to do that if I can help it. I guess that is the downside to staying out and staying up late. One's days and nights get all mixed up.

Sibling, Shanna and I just saw "American Gangster". Denzel Washington is freaking awesome...he knows how to play a badass. An - almost - likeable badass, too. Go see it, you'll not be disappointed!

31 October 2007

Like nails on a chalkboard

Do you ever have those days where everything makes your skin crawl? Perhaps women are more familiar with this phenomenon (you know, the whole PMS thing and all) but that was not the case for me today. I don't know what it was...but like, one of my coworkers eats REALLY noisily. Doesn't matter what it is - it's just noisy. And we have a big common table in the middle of our office...so when I'm furiously crunching numbers for budget worksheets in my cube 15 feet away from said table, and xyz coworker is sitting there doing this weird crunching/smacking combo . . . it makes me want to rip off my ears and scream.

Seriously. It's just one of those things, I guess.

And don't even get me started on people refusing to use the coffee measuring cup when making coffee - so that we waste ridiculous amounts of Peet's coffee - and what we get to drink is sludgy nast.


okay. rant over.

29 October 2007

LOVE and other chaoticisms

In Vegas over the weekend, we saw The Beatles LOVE Cirque du Soleil show at the Mirage. I have seen several of the Cirque du Soleil creations - either live or on DVD, but my experience with LOVE was a vastly different experience for me.

Maybe it had to do with the music. I mean - besides being the Beatles, whom I love - I think it had to do with the fact that, unlike other Cirque shows, the music had a direct connection to the audience through words. In most other Cirque shows, the music is beautiful, ethereal and the perfect background for feats of physical prowess - but the words are all nonsense. Made up syllables become part of the soundscape, blending in with the instruments and synthesizers.

LOVE, on the other hand, was like experiencing words come to life. Rather than fade into the background, the music *was* the story: language giving life to tableaux of hope, fear, joy, despair, and yes - even love. A chaoticism of sound, light, color, feeling, beauty, angst, awe, humor and artistry. Not to mention Mr. Kite.

Minor digression . . . I have spent hours - perhaps even days or weeks - of my life doing nothing more than listening to certain albums over and over and over. Especially in high school, when on any given day it would be easy to find me locked up in my room, sprawled across my floor or bed, music blasting, lyrics in front of me, trying to glean whatever wisdom was to be found in those magical combinations of notes, rhythms and words. One of the albums worn down to the ground - and I still know every word of it to this day - is Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. This album blew my mind when I first heard it all the way through. And it still does. Whatever combination of genius, genes and pharmaceuticals the lads from Liverpool were on during the creation of Sgt. Pepper sure did do it for me - even thought I myself had never experienced half of what they were talking about half of the time.

SO - to actually see, hear, and feel something so near and dear to me come to life
...well...it left me practically shell-shocked. And amazed, inspired. And I cannot even begin to do it justice through my own paltry words.

Just - if you ever get to Vegas, go see this show. All you need is LOVE...and I believe it.

26 October 2007


I honked at not one, but TWO MUNI busses today. Or maybe it was the same bus twice in a row. Whatever. It (they?) cut me off twice. NO signal, NO warning just allofthesuddenholycrapherecomesthebusbarrellingintothesideofmycar!

It(they) deserved both of those honks!

25 October 2007

Bragging Rights

Check out the amazing AZ in the following videos in About.com's Food section:

Find the Right Tea for You

Benefits of a Whole Leaf Tea

Pairing Tea With Food

I get to be friends with this woman!! If this is not cause for bragging rights, I do not know what is! She's teaching the world about tea in such an enlightening and professional manner, complete with perfect hand gestures! I know this was a stressful shoot for her, but I only know that because I heard her talk about it. The end product is nothing but polished. Congrats, AZ, on a job well done :)

23 October 2007

A rose by any other name . . .

I've been thinking about names a lot recently. More specifically, my name - for various and sundry reasons - and what it means.

KATHARINE is the German and English variant of Katherine, which has a debated etymology. Most often you read that it is a derivative from the Greek word katharos, meaning "Pure". However, it the debated root words have the following alternate meanings:
"Each of the Two"
"My consecration of your name"
"Far off" (From the goddess Hecate, associated with witchcraft, tombs, demons and the underworld).

ELLEN is the Medieval English or Dutch variant of Helen, which also has Greek origins. The Greek word helene means "torch" or "corposant". (Corposant meaning either: "Holy body" or refers to the phoenomenon of St. Elmo's Fire).

My last name stems from the Hebrew word meaning "God is my judge".

So...string them all together, and you get "Pure Torch God is my Judge" or "Torture Torch God is my judge" or "Far off corporsant . . ." etc. It's interesting. There's a lot of weight in some of those definitions - a lot of pressure to live up to, in some cases.

But wait! There's more . . . what about nicknames?
-Katja or Katya
-Grace (for my lack thereof)
-Katarina or Catarina

And, what about taking on attributes of character names? I've run the gamut this year!
-Madame Larina
-Little Buttercup
-Ivana Trump
-Virgin Mary

It's just interesting to think about . . . good times.

20 October 2007


So you think you can dance audition reruns on MTV. Hey, I never saw them the first go-round. Hilarious!

Toasted pumpkin seeds. Waiting for the oven to heat up as we speak.

Long walk on the beach. (Ha! Sounds like a cliche') With great company and sand in the teeth - it was windy.

Chopin's Piano Concerto #2 on the radio while venting my frustrations on a poor pumpkin. He lived to tell his tale, but man, that is one gutless pumpkin. Now, anyways.

Sleeping in followed by leisurely coffee and crossword. Best. Ever.

As for the rest of my evening. I don't know. I still have 300 rented from earlier this week, so I might watch that. I have to get up early to watch Bethie (friend in town) run her marathon tomorrow...so, we'll see.

16 October 2007


I have a viral eye infection. Awesome! One thing after another . . . ack!!

I'm *not* just trying to skip work here, people. (As entertaining as that might be! hahahahah)!

I have a couple of good movies to watch, though. Hooray!

12 October 2007

Les délices . . .

Sweet potato soup

Atlantic cod with leeks, onions and potatoes

Orange blossom beignets

Mighty Leaf tea

11 October 2007

Warning: Purple and Brown have been known to cause uncontrollable giggling

. . . so, I wish I had the full lenghth version of this, but you can find it over on the www.aardman.com site under "new ads".

06 October 2007

Enticing the taste buds this weekend . . .

AND - I didn't have a picture of this, but I do have to say I made a very yummy salad comprised of:
-Baby beets
-Garlic and herb feta
-Dried Cranberries
-Diced red onion
-Diced green onion
served with Balsamic vinaigrette, or oil/vinegar and salt & pepper...mmmm. The leftovers - after having mingled in the fridge - are even better...mmmmmm

04 October 2007

They're baaaaaaack

Yes, indeed, folks, the annual duck and cover event has returned!

Still cool, but also distracting!

01 October 2007

chilling out

I am chilling out here on day 5 of my forced rest. I thought it would be good for me (and my attitude) to borrow an idea from AZ and focus on the top 10 GOOD things about my last week! Here they are - in random order:

1. Greek "Knee" Fest - including homemade spanokopita by AZ!
2. Leftover spanokopita (what can I say - I've not ventured to the grocery store!)
3. The kindness of my friends, coming over to spend time with me, watch movies, cook...truly, it has been a blessing!
4. The kindess of strangers - my building manager's gf saw me waiting for my (late) taxi to the doctor this morning, and ended up driving me down there herself!
5. Laughter in spades
6. Sibling got home safely from London yesterday (and he brought home treats!)
7. The Travel Channel
8. Catching up on emailing some old friends
9. Email from Rona, safe in her destination
10. Liking my knee doctor - very important, indeed!

27 September 2007

Laughter is the best medicine

So, it's been a rough week, and in my convalescence on the couch, I am surfing the net, and finding some very amusing things.

For your reading pleasure, may I suggest the following:

Survival of the Fittest Hilarous - best of Craigslist.

Ass-Kicking Machine. Odd (bofCL).

Left-hand strung piano. I love this (bofCL).

LOL Cats. I know they've been around for a while. But I still find them oddly creepy and funny.

The I, Claudius drinking game rules. Oh man, it's been forever since I watched some of this show...it might be time to netflix it...

Bar jokes

Question: What do they call the cabs lined up at the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport? Answer: The yellow rows of taxis.

No good very bad week

It's been a rough week.
A friend a colleague passed away. One friends's father passed away after being diagnosed with lung cancer. And a dear friend of mine on the east coast - who I thought fell off the planet - has really just been carrying the burden of caring for a his sick father by himself all summer. Granted, these tragedies are not necessarily "my own" in a way...and yet, I feel them all, deeply. As mom mom said "You are just tender hearted, K, and you've always been that way.". And it's true. Even though my skin has toughened over the years, and I can hide my emotions under a cloud of humor when I have to do so . . . underneath it all, I feel the hurts of people I love quite acutely. It has been a great blessing to me over the years, but it's not always easy.
And I wouldn't change a thing.

But finding out about these three friends in 24 hours - this on top of some already stressful situations - this was too much.

Fast forward to this morning. I woke up late, was in a rush, and in my haste, slipped and fell on my wooden floor (my feet were still wet from the shower).
In the process, I wrenched my knee quite badly . . . nothing new, if you know me. So. Thankfully Shanna was home and took me to the ER, where I hobbled in with great pain, and hobbled out on crutches, knee brace and ibuprophen. I am to see the orthopedic surgeon on Monday.

Several years ago - after my last serious knee injury - my doctor told me that if I ever seriously injured my knee(s) again, I would knee surgery. So, of course, those are the thoughts running through my mind right now. I hope I don't need surgery - that would suck. But, I guess if I had to get it, now's as good a time as any other. (Things could be worse! Praise God that they are not!)

So. I'm at home, on the couch with ice pack and pillows. hey hey! no work for a few days :) That's a silver lining!

comic relief

24 September 2007


A friend and fellow lamplighter has passed away quite suddenly. Peter Weller was a lovely spirit, kind and genuine. Truly a gentleman, indeed. I shall miss him and his crazy antics.

A Midsummer Night's Dream

It was truly an international gathering. At this year’s Shakespeare Festival in the Presidio, we had a truly international gathering.
I had sent out a mass invitation for people to join me at one of my favorite SF “summer” events, and we had quite the eclectic and fun turnout. Also, perhaps it is just further testimony to the genius of Shakespeare that half the people in our group for whom English is not a first language truly enjoyed the play. (It’s also a testament to the brilliant production and very fine acting!)

From the corners of the globe (France, Germany, Korea, Japan, Brazil, Texas haha) and across the US, we laughed and bonded over great food (thanks, AZ), wine and Shakespearian chaos. It was a wonderful evening! I often feel as if I lead multiple lives, and this evening was a mixture of some of them: my music world; my church world; my personal relationships world; my household. I try to keep them all balanced, but I don’t always succeed. I tend to not be able to say no, sometimes.
Right now, our church is going through a big “get out of your comfort zone and meet people outside of these walls” push. In all honestly, I find it a strange concept to have to go out of one’s way to meet people outside of one’s house of worship. If anything, I feel I’m on the opposite side of that fence. Just between work (musical and non-musical) and home, a majority of my time is spent with colleagues, friends and family who either a) couldn’t be bothered with ‘religion’ and/or b) get paid to attend church several times a weekend. In saying this, though, I do not wish to imply that my circumstances make me any better or worse a “Christian” than anyone else. I just have a different perspective; different goals. I feel like I don’t have to create circumstances to “share with all”…but rather, be a good steward of the friendships, relationships and opportunities I already have. Am I loving people? Am I listening to them? Really? Am I too quick to judge? Do I spend enough time in relationship with my Father? Quality time? How much time do I waste watching bad TV, when I could have made a phone call to a friend or family member?

Things to consider.

! ! !


Next weekend, people, one of my (if not my actual) FAVORITE San Francisco festivals.
My feet are already tapping!


Edited to add this poem - whose author, I think, would choose to remain anonymous - which captures some of the essence of the festival:

oh spanakopita, you look niceta
next to vegetarian moussaka
the night is young, let me danceta
next to hot men in tight pantseta...

All I can say to that is OPA!!!!

22 September 2007

sensory perceptions

Bolivian pipes

Crab quiche
Dried mango
Yuca Frita
Caffe latte

Dagon's temple
Olive colored suits
Leopard-print fmp's
Dahlila's boudoir
Sunset over GGBridge

Silk sleeves
Warm paper
So-ripe-they-almost-squish figs

Donuts baking
Vanilla candles
Cinnamon tea

11 September 2007


Jaime's uncle and two cousins were in the first plane that crashed into the WTC 6 years ago today.

10 September 2007

when worlds collide

seriously. my mind is blown. it's really funny.

i had lunch today with like...14 other people - about half of whom i knew previous to our lunching together. it was fun and we had a good time eating, laughing, getting to know one another.

fast foward to tonight. a few friends and i are self-described 'social experimenters'; ie: social network site users/chatters/etc which now and then provide the occasional date.

so, one of the 'social experiment' sites i hadn't checked in about...3 months or so. but i had a reminder email, so i thought i'd check it out. why not? bored, doing laundry, sure!

turns out i had a message in my box from someone, from back in July (when I was crazy). well, i recognized the person who sent me the message. from lunch today. WILD.

09 September 2007

A few Alaska pics . . .

(The full set is up here for your viewing pleasure.)

04 September 2007

87 hours

5:00 p.m.: leave house
5:30 p.m.: arrive at BART
6:15 p.m.: arrive at SFO
9:10 p.m.: leave SFO
5:30 a.m.: arrive at JFK
6:00 a.m.: watch sunrise over Queens
7:00 a.m.: arrive in midtown
7:15 a.m.: sleep!
12 noon: lunch and blessed coffee
1:00 p.m.: walk to and thru Times Square
1:30 p.m.: hop subway to WTC site
1:45 p.m.: fight the crowds at WTC site
2:30 p.m. walk up to Chinatown
3:00 p.m.: get serenaded by a puppet singing "Under the Boardwalk"
3:30 p.m.: Pizza break at Vincent's in Little Italy
4:30 p.m.: Look for that one purse shop Alan swears is "just on the next block"
5:00 p.m.: Find shop
5:30 p.m.: Head to Joe's Pub
6:00 p.m.: Get free entrance to the show at Joe's Pub (courtesy of Alan)
9:30 p.m.: Mind is now blown from the concert Stephane Wremble just gave
10:30 p.m.: Arrive at Max Brenner's "chocolate by the bald man" cafe
11:00 p.m.: Consume chocolate and coffee
12:00 a.m.: Decide to head home
1:00 a.m.: -sleep-
8:00 a.m.: Where am I? What time zone?
9:00 a.m.: blessed nectar of the gods coffee time
9:45 a.m.: negociate subway singlehandedly
10:15 a.m.: arrive at correct destination in time to meet alicia for church
12:00 noon: church ends
12:30 p.m.: still debating which dim sum place to frequent
12:35 p.m.: board Ford explorer for trip to chinatown
1:00 p.m.: arrive at The Golden Palace
2:00 p.m: sated and also have an autograph
2:30 p.m.: decided not to wait in the 2-hour line for serendipity
2:35 p.m.: order frozen hot cocoa at dylan's candy bar
3:00 p.m.: decide to walk to met museum
3:15 p.m.: decide to turn around and walk to hotel to put on more comfy shoes
4:00 p.m.: start out again for the met museum
4:45 p.m.: arrive at museum
5:15 p.m.: museum closes
5:30 p.m.: nat shows up at closed museum
5:45 p.m.: head to west village pier to gaze at the sights
6:45 p.m.: watch breakdancers in wash park
7:30 p.m.: get on subway
8:00 p.m.: eat real NYC foldover style pizza
9:00 p.m.: head to Times square
9:30 p.m.: fight crowds at hard rock
10:00 p.m.: fight crowds at coldstone
10:30 p.m.: watch cop pose for photos
10:50 p.m.: applaud cop for posing for so many photos
11:00 p.m.: arrive at Rockefeller center
12:00 midnight: forced to leave "top of the rock" observation deck
12:45 a.m.: back to hotel
1:45 a.m.: sleep
9:00 a.m.: up. coffee. nectar. mmmm.
11:00 a.m.: checked out of hotel
11:15 a.m.: real NYC bagel
12:00 noon: walk to time warner building
12:15 p.m.: walk to lincoln center
12:30 p.m.: take opera shots in front of the met
12:45 p.m.: real NYC cab to natural history museum
1:00 p.m.: wander around museum
1:45 p.m.: try to get planetarium access
2:00 p.m.: no go on the planetarium access
2:05 p.m.: dinosaurs!
2:45 p.m.: nat arrives at museum
2:55 p.m.: real NYC cab agrees to take all 5 of us back to hotel
3:15 p.m.: head for the E train
3:30 p.m.: say our farewells
4:15 p.m.: arrive JFK
6:30 p.m.: leave JFK
9:45 p.m.: arrive SFO
12:51 a.m.: what time zone am I in? where am I?
8:00 a.m.: the alarm will go off and I will have to go to work

30 August 2007

The last frontier

...no, it's not space (that's the 'final' frontier....)

The last frontier is Alaska. And it is truly a place to behold. I'm working on uploading my pictures.

The family and I (plus Sibling's gf) had an amazing time. We were in Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Glacier National Park, Whittier and Anchorage. Some of these places are only reachable by boat and plane, perhaps by train. Or, there is just one road in and out. But only in the summertime when it's not buried under snow. Then it's time to bust out the dogsleds.

The sheer scale of things in Alaska boggles the mind. The sky is huge (even bigger than Texas, oh yes); the ocean is vast; the mountains are really that green. I feel like I've been on another planet. And the diversity of wildlife! We saw: Beluga whales, humpback whales, orcas, bald eagles, moose, all varieties of bear, elk, reindeer, HUGE spawning salmon, musk ox, porpuses, harbor seals, puffins and sea lions.

We had daylight from 5:30 in the morning to 10 at night. The people are generous and friendly.
I cannot wait to return and get a chance to explore this part of our country on a deeper level.

17 August 2007

je me trouve....

sans mots. mdrrrrrrrr.

c'etait une semaine tres interessante. et je dois laisser tomber mon imagination. parce que - si je ne la laisse pas - ca sera dangereux pour moi. bon. on verra.

je suis fatiguee, heureuse et j'ai TROP de choses a faire avant mes vacances (ceux qui commencent lundi, finalement!)

et, comme c deja tard, je dois me couchee.....

10 August 2007

ack ack ack ack

c'est rien. c'est rien. c'est rien. ca m'est egale. ca m'est egale. ca m'est egale....

alors pourkoi c si difficile de laisse tomber tous ce qu'elle dit...presque tout le temps. alors....elle m'ennerve.. c'est ca. c'est au point que je ne peux pas la supporter pas....mais peut-etre c seulement moi qui n'a pas de patience...surtout maintenant. alors, mon Dieu...donne-moi de la patience...et de grace.....

08 August 2007

The glove has been thrown . . .

. . . and I shall accept the challenge.

Pinafore has been getting - almost across the board - great reviews from bay area critics. This is wonderful for the whole company and hopefully shall extend to some full houses during our remaining performance weekends. (Let me know if you'd like to come see it!)

However, (and I know it's just my own pride), I can't help but feeling a little like the 'weak link' in some folks' eyes. I know there will always be good and bad reviews - and opinions are completely subjective, I shouldn't let them get to me, etc - but part of this one did, and has been eating at me a little bit.

[MezzoSF] sang Buttercup. In a production dedicated to the memory of two historic Buttercups, it can’t have been easy, but she did a good job. She sounds a bit like someone sticking to the score; I hope she will come to be more outrageous in the part. Buttercup, like many G&S mezzos, should be a scene-stealer.
The thing is, I tend to agree with her - at least about my first performance when the review was done. I have noticed that I do improve throughout the run of a show - there is a vast difference between my first and last show. Not that the first one is "bad", but it's like I'm not fully enveloped by the character - that I am "sticking to the score" as it were. I don't know why I am like this - maybe it's fear? Or I am just feeling inhibited? I know that with each performance, I dive deeper into the character. What I need to learn is how to dive in deep sooner.

I can't help but compare myself with my colleagues who have done this show a million times before. But of COURSE they have more layers in their characterizations - they're being reunited with an old friend. Whereas myself, I am meeting Buttercup for the first time. But even that does not suffice as an excuse, for I know that I am not the only lead doing this show for the first time. Which makes me wonder . . . what is it I'm afraid of? It's ACTING, for crying out loud! There are no consequences . . . I can pretty much do whatever I would like to do. Most people only dream of that, and here is my golden opportunity. Hmmmmm. Is it my introvert rearing her head? I mean this role is a little more - earthy is perhaps the right word - than what I usually play - much more extroverted.

Anyways. This being said. I accept my critic's challenge, to be more outrageous. I shall not venture to be a scene-stealer; rather, I shall venture to be more connected to Buttercup. We'll see...

27 July 2007

like sand through the hourglass...

...so are the days of our lives.

not that that has anything to do with this post..really...except maybe for the late hour, and how it keeps getting later and later and I need to go to bed...but first i wanted to write down a few thoughts.

Tonight was a night of connections - old, new, established...all around it was good. I love people. I love loving people. It can be hard, sure...but the benefits greatly outweigh the detrimental parts (most of the time). And yes - I still need my "alone" time...but you get the idea.

Some of those connections happened at our first sitzprobe tonight for Pinafore. The orchestra sounds amazing - they always do, actually, with this little company. Got to see a familiar face from last year (we'll call him "junior") who plays the viola. He's the image of his father (2006's conductor)...and it's so fun to see them together. Actually, they were both there tonight. It had been a long time (a year, in fact) since I saw Jr. anywhere other than [insert social networking site here], and he always makes me laugh. Kid is funny. And his dad - well, he just always knows the right thing to say. He's very much an encouragement/encourager to me as a musician, and I am just very grateful for him in that way. I respect him and his opinion immensely.

Fast Forward to post-rehearsal. My favorite Romanian tenor had a good-bye party tonight. He leaves to move back home to Brasov on Tuesday. It was a small party, and we had wine, vodka, food, just chilling. I will miss him a good deal. We've not been friends, really, except for this year, but we just connected very well and easily. I look forward to a trip to Romania...! Also, at his party, was this mysterious girl, "Irene"...who looked too familiar. Finally, it comes out that I went to grad school with her FATHER (she's 17), and she is just here visiting the states on holiday (he is also Romanian). When I realized who she was, I just about fell out of my chair....I had heard her dad talk about her - but he moved back to Romania a couple years ago, and we've not spoken in a while....so, to see her sitting there...with her father's eyes. It was crazy. Truly - and I could only feel like this joy bubble up in me...just happiness at getting the chance to meet her, and share with her about her life, her dad, etc. It was amazing, actually.

So. Now it's 2:15am. I am truly mindblown, happy, and sad all at once. All because of love and relationship with other people. La vita e'bella....si?

21 July 2007


Ahhhhhhhhhh..........sigh of contentment.

It's been a great evening. I had a birthday party tonight. Nothing too formal - just about 20ish folks crammed into our living room from all different social circles, eating, drinking wine, making new friends (and reconnecting with old ones!)

It is a wonderful thing to be surrounded by people you love, and who love you back. The sounds of laughter and clinking glasses mixed with smiles and hugs. Even the folks who were tired after a long day (week!) of work felt at home enough to find a hidden corner and read for a bit. This is what is important to me . . . being open, welcoming, and warm; cultivating relationships - both old and new (though this gets harder as I get busier); creating an atmosphere of "home"; sharing joy and struggles with those in my tribes. It was a great night. I haven't had a party chez moi in a long time, either, so it was nice to do that again.

One note - amazingly people all pretty much left at midnight (a "decent hour"). Perhaps it is a sign that yes, I really am getting older! Well, that, and Harry Potter was released at midnight tonight. I know of at least three folks headed to apres-party at various bookstores around the bay. (I finally caved myself and ordered one on amazon.com today!)

Oh..and for those of you interested, my friend Mark's Wizardrock band - Marked as His Equal - has just released a new CD. Check out his myspace page here.

17 July 2007


It's after midnight. In fact, it's 12:15. And there are two *EXTREMELY* happy little birds. Outside of my window. Chirping away and away . . . carrying on such a lovely little conversation with one another.


my iPod's out of battery...d'oh! Earplugs???

10 July 2007


-Looking forward to 28. Should be great.
-Bastille day is Saturday. I am so excited. Every year I am like "oooh this year I'll celebrate" and I never do. But this year I am! yay.
-I just found out an ex of mine is married. Crazy! But I'm happy for him.
-I am looking foward to dinner tomorrow at Cafe Claude
-I am learning to say "yes" to the right thing(s). You'd think this would be easy for someone who has a hard time saying "no".
-God is able. God loves me.
-Go see Ratatouille. It is such a great film!
-Oh...and what may be the awesomeist celebreality show yet: Scott Baio is 45 . . . and Single. Thanks, Vh1!

08 July 2007

World views

Yesterday, on 07-07-07, the New 7 Wonders of the World were announced. This project was started by a British adventurer, who started a foundation to protect some of the world's heritage sites, which need additional funding to be restored. UNESCO can't do everything by itself, people.

So, the "new 7 wonders" were chosen by a world vote - via internet and texting. Yours truly did participate a few months ago, casting my vote for the 7/21 candidates I thought should win.

The original wonders of the world - the 7 wonders of the Ancient world" are slmost all disappeared. Only the Pyramids in Giza remain. (The 6 others being: the Lighthouse of Alexandria; the Temple of Artemis; the Statue of Zeus; the Colossus of Rhodes; the Hanging Garden of Babylon; and the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus).

The "New7Wonders" now - in random order:
Chichén Itzá (pyramid), Mexico
Christ Redeemer (statue), Brazil
The Great Wall, China
Machu Picchu, Peru
Petra, Jordan
Roman Colloseum, Italy
Taj Mahal, India

I had a conversation last night with a friend about national anthems, and how most of them are all about war, blood and guts. The conversation, naturally, turned to France, seeing as Bastille day is on Saturday (and we have plans to celebrate). So we start singing La Marseillaise at the top of our lungs, walking down Bush street. We get to the end of the second line . . . and don't remember the words. Ack. Our dreams of being able to sing along with the Frenchies a week from now were dashed.
Until now.
Can I tell you how much I love wikipedia? So! In case you're interested - and I know you are! - here are the lyrics and translation (first verse only):

Allons enfants de la Patrie
Le jour de gloire est arrivé!
Contre nous de la tyrannie
L'étendard sanglant est levé. (bis)
Entendez-vous dans les campagnes
Mugir ces féroces soldats?
Ils viennent jusque dans vos bras
Égorger vos fils, vos compagnes!

Aux armes, citoyens!
Formez vos bataillons!
Marchons, marchons!
Qu'un sang impur
Abreuve nos sillons!

Arise childen of the fatherland
The day of glory has arrived!
Against us, tyranny's
Bloody banner is raised (repeat)
Do you hear in the fields
The howling of these savage soldiers?
They are coming into your midsts,
To cut the throats of your sons, your wives!

To arms, citizens!
Form your battalions!
Let us march, let us march!
May tainted blood
Water our fields!

06 July 2007


This is a random entry. Hence the name "random laundry". Work is killllllllllin me slowly and softly today. I might. Just. Snap. so. Here we go. Let's start things off with a survey, shall we? Feel free to do the same on your blog, if you so choose to make this a meme...

1. Who took your default pic?
I don't have one on this site. (I took this from a myspace bulletin, can you tell?)

2. Exactly what are you wearing right now?
Blue jeans, white shirt, tennis shoes and a grimace.

3. What is your current problem?
Neckpain from sleeping crooked. Bronchitis remnants.

4. What makes you most happy?
Friends, family, love, laughter, music, movies, travel, foreign languages and cultures.

5. What's the name of the song that you're listening to?
streaming radio 105.7 la kalle

6. Do you like MTV?

7. Name something that annoys you about people?

Chapter 1:

1. Nickname(s)?
K, kates, daniel, sibling, grace

2. Eye color?

3. Hair Color?

Chapter 2:

1. Do you get along with your parent(s)

2. Are your parents married/separated/divorced?
married - this year makes 40

3. Do you have any Siblings?
yes, one brother


Chapter 3:

1. Ice Cream:
mint cookie

2. season:
fall, spring

3. Book(s):
Outlander series, LOTR, historical fiction, travelogues

4. Band:
u2 is my all-time favorite

5. Food:
Chicken Caesar salad

6. Drink:
Water, Tea, Coffee

7. Past time
musical activities, movies, spending time w/my friends

8. Pen color:

9. Store:
book stores, music stores

Chapter 4:

1. Write on your hand?

2. Call people back?
yes - usually

3. Believe in love?

4. Sleep on a certain side of the bed?
at home, on the left. Hotels: whichever side the alarm clock is on.

5. Any mental health issue?:
hahahha to be sure.

Chapter 5:

1. Broken a bone?
no, actually. Chipped a piece off my kneecap once, but I didn't break it.

3. Had physical therapy?
many times.

4. Gotten surgery?
wisdom teeth out; had oral surgery for that time I ran into a metal bar with my mouth in grade school.

5. taken any pain killers?
not today

6. Have you ever gone scuba diving/snorkeling?
snorkeling, yes.

7.Ever been stung by a bee?

8. Thrown up at a doctors office?

9. Sworn in front of your parents?
not often!

Chapter 6:
Who/what was the last:

1. Movie you saw in the movie theaters?
Ocean's 13...fab!

2. Person to text you?

3. Thing you touched?

4. Thing you ate?
chicken caesar salad

5. Thing you said?

6. Had a detention?

7. Person you hugged?
sibilng, probably

8. Person you kissed?

9. Person you called?

10. Person to call you?
Work call

11. Book you read?
"Pretty little mistakes" it is basically a 'choose your own adventure' book for grown-ups. *awesome*

12. Last time you cleaned your room...?
too long ago
And continuing on the random thread.
Things I'm looking foward to experiencing this weekend (trying to cram in a lot, here:
-"Gypsy Caravan" movie (only in town for one week!)
-French lesson (teaching) at Cafe Claude (never been)
-Bocce ball (learning)
-Free Candela concert @ Yerba Buena Gardens
-Kryolan's make-up sale (hopefully I'll have time to get to it)
-Ratatouille w/Sibling
And, next week is birthday week...WOW!

04 July 2007


it's laaaaaate late late late and I am awake awake awake.

it was the cup of coffee at 7pm. I forgot to ask for decaf, and drank it anyway. i though maybe because I was sick and sleepy, it wouldn't really have that much of an affect on me . . .


coffee + 3 hour nap = no sleepy time for KT. argh.

oh well.

Anywyas this evening had a lovely game night at my French student's house. Our CLG is on a summer schedule: one week study, one week social night, etc etc ad nauseum until September. It is actually quite good, because we are getting to know each other better relationally . . . which hopefully will make our study times better, as we are establishing deeper levels of trust I think. Team buidling, trust building, relationships...these things take time.

Anyways, our team won OUTBURST! And one of the funniest categories of the evening was something along the lines of other words for 'farts'. I mean. Really. It was pretty funny...and the other team only could guess 5/10 words for that category!

In other news...I finally found my camera. I had been racking my brain, trying to remember where I left it and freaking out that I lost it - I mean, I have a very photo-worthy summer coming up, what with my birthday, performances, backstage pics, vacation and a wedding all in the next 3 months. Turns out the camera was hiding in the Green Bean's glove compartment. WHEW. It ran out of battery, and I had left it hiding in there, I guess. I am relieved. I just wish I had remembered sooner, for 'rona's and my photo shoot down at Fisherman's wharf a couple weekends ago...

et finalement...je voudrais ecrire qqchose en francais maintenant. mon anniversiare arrive en qq jours...et j'ai envie d'inviter qqpersonnes chez moi..PAS bcp de personnes..mais c difficile. parce que si j'invite cette personna ci, je dois aussi inviter celle-la...etc etc etc....et vraiment, il y en a qq d'eux - de ma groupe si tu veux - qui sont...'biens'..mais nous ne sommmes pas proches amis. alors...mais c MON anniversaire, oui, et je voudrais avoir des personnes chez moi qui j'aime bien...et pas les autres qui m'ennervent. est-ce que ca c trop a demander? nous sommes tous adults...je pense...? hahahah alors, on verra, on verra....j'avais rien dire ce soir, et personnne a rien dire en ce qui concerne la soiree...alors..bon.

et maintenant...au lit!!

26 June 2007

I know, I know . . .

I haven't been writing much of late - sorry - but here is a little tidbit I found interesting.

Guess what George Michael's real name is . . .

Yorgos Panayiotou (!) Who knew he was Greek?

Here's another interesting one: Freddy Mercury. Birth name: Farrokh Bulsara. What? He was born in Zanzibar, Tanzania...! Crazyness.

These fine bits of knowledge and more courtesy of this site here.

13 June 2007