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You like me! Of course, you probably don't know me very well.

Archive for August, 2010

Ask Emma

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

It’s Help for Boys week at Ask Emma (apparently).

Dear Emma,

My girlfriend and I are thinking about going on vacation together for the first time. I’m worried because, until now, we’ve never shared a bathroom for an extended period of time.

I know she … does stuff, in the bathroom, but I don’t want to know about it. What’s the best way to ask her to wait until I’m out of the hotel room to do her business?


Picky Pete

Dear Pete,

If your girlfriend is anything like me, she’s already considered this and has several fake errands for you to run in the morning (or evening, depending on her personal internal schedule). In that case, just get the hell out of the room when she asks you to and don’t come back for fifteen minutes – a buffer never hurts.

If your girlfriend is NOT like me, however, I don’t think there’s any good way to address this. ‘Hey honey, I can’t get my mind around the fact that you are a human being with working intestinal pieces’, while literal, makes you sound like an asshat. ‘Sweetheart, I’d prefer to believe that, as a woman, you don’t poop’ is even worse. I’m inclined to think that either of those statements would probably derail your vacation before it even started.

Basically? If you love her, love her guts and trust that she’ll share whatever is appropriate for her.



Dear Emma,

I dated a girl in college. We broke up sort of contentiously but it’s been a long time and we’re facebook friends now.

Here’s the thing: I live with my current girlfriend and we’re adopting a dog together. The puppy is a girl and my favorite name is the name of my college girlfriend. Can I name my dog the same thing as a woman I used to sleep with? Do I have to tell my current girlfriend that that’s the name? I always like the name, even before college.

Thank you,

Uncreative Earl

Dear Earl,

You want to name your dog after your college girlfriend? At least sort of?

That is so fucked up, and I will tell you why.

That happened to me.

Seriously. I had two moderately serious boyfriends in college, and years later when I was catching up with the first one he informed me that he and his girlfriend were adopting a dog. He said “I wanted to name her Emma because I’ve always liked that name… but, you know.”


No, I don’t know. Apparently he decided it was a bad idea, because they named the dog something else. Unless you and the college girl dated for less than a month, I suggest you do the same. Sure, you probably won’t think of her every time you say the dog’s name. Sure, your new girlfriend probably won’t either. But some of those times? You will. And if your new girlfriend finds out later instead of now that you picked a past loves name for your new shared fuzzy statement of commitment?

You’re fucked.

You know?


pack up the babies and grab the old ladies

Monday, August 30th, 2010

Saturday night Star and I accompanied my mom to a benefit for the local velodrome. (My entire family enthusiastically and somewhat psychotically races bicycles in the most skill intensive ways you can imagine. Except me. Because, as I keep telling them, I’m smarter than they are.)

The races were cool and my opinion that people who ride along what is essentially a vertical WALL in parts are insane remained intact.

At some point in the evening, in relation to absolutely nothing that was happening at the benefit, Star and I started a discussion about what would make you quit having sex with someone. In the actual moment, not removing someone from your sexual Rolodex in general. (I don’t have a sexual Rolodex, but I like the sound of it. It’s like the little black book for overachievers.) Quit as in stop what you’re doing, put your pants on, and leave.

I’m sure we came up with a pretty comprehensive list, since we got home at 11ish and she stayed until 1. However, I didn’t write any of them down, and now the only one I can remember is

If they request that you call them grandma or grandpa.

Because – ew.

There you go. Weekend adventures with Emma and Star.

P.S. I’ve postponed Ask Emma until tomorrow because I forgot about it, so there’s still time to get your questions in!

the weight of the world

Friday, August 27th, 2010

I have been at home a lot more in the last month. Not having a job will do that for you, turns out. Also? Not having an income.

My regular diet of smoothie, salad, and then… something? More salad, sometimes? Dinner out, more often than not – that diet is out the window. I’ve been making bread and my own ricotta and raw fig jam. And also, eating it.

Shockingly, that has led to weight gain. Not a lot, but a little. And I’m irritated by it.

I spend a lot of time thinking and talking about body image. It’s important to me that women (and men) know that there is no right way to be shaped. That being happy with your body does not mean beating or dieting it into a certain shape – it means accepting that there is a range of shapes you will be able to attain and finding the one that makes you comfortable.

And yet I’m all concerned about five extra pounds on myself. Sure, it’s easy for me to say that the shape I’m comfortable with is the one that’s five pounds thinner, but it’s also bullshit. This has nothing to do with comfort. Eating ricotta on toast is comfortable. Five more pounds is comfortable on my body. My clothes still fit.

It’s my mind that isn’t comfortable. I feel like my five pounds take me from being the right shape to the wrong one. Obviously, that’s ridiculous – but how much easier is it to tell other people that they’re beautiful than it is to accept it yourself?

I blame… Self Magazine. (Sure, I pulled that out of thin air, but it’s probably not that far off.) Secrets to loving my body – as long as I lose inches all over?

Jerk faces. I’m going to have some toast. So there.

Ignite Boulder

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

We had our rehearsal last night.

Everyone was fabulous. If you’re coming (tickets here hint oh-so-subtle hint) you’re going to really enjoy yourself.

The best part, though? How much braver they made me.

The reality:

How they made me feel:

I have been close to withdrawing several times – school is a little overwhelming and speaking to 1300 people in 7 days isn’t exactly helping to alleviate that. However, do you SEE the crown? I can’t not do it. They made me a ‘you’re cool’ crown. An imaginary one. In my head and nowhere else. But still. A crown.

school days, school days, dear old golden rule days

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

How appropriate is that song right now? I’m going back to school today. In Golden. At the same institution that provided me with my high quality but barely used undergraduate degree. Dear old Golden rule days indeed.

My classes don’t start until 12, fortunately, so I have time to continue working on my Spark. What I do need to set time apart for, though, is deciding what to wear.

I know. It’s not like this is kindergarten. No one will be taking pictures of me walking out the door with my messenger bag over one shoulder and my lunch in one hand. Also, it’s not like there will be that many people to judge – according to the website, there are almost 40 people in the Mathematics and Computer Science Graduate program.

If we assume that the overall ratio carries through to my department, that means there are 10 or so other women. If half are math majors, then 4 or 5 are computer science majors. If half are continuing students, then there may be 2 other women starting with me.

So yeah. It’s not like there will be a lot of people to judge me. (I am obviously assuming that the men of Mines don’t care what I wear. They’re engineers. The fact that I have a uterus is going to take them a full semester to get used to.)

However? How often do you have your first day of graduate school? Once. Maybe. I need something that says I’m smart, but I’m laid back. Something that says I’m dedicated, but doesn’t look like I tried too hard. Something that’s comfortable, but not slobby.

Good thing I still have four hours.