Friday, March 31, 2006


Yesterday I had my first allergy test. Its official, I’m not allergic to pollen. Now I have a lovely, perfectly symmetrical grid of about 15 holes in my arm. I look like a heroin addict with OCD that never got the memo that the needles had to hit a vein, and just kept pokin’. The doctor never told me that my arm would still be sore…thanks Doc. I’m really feeling it now too, after my first night back in Ballroom Dance.

I got my money back from Improv 101, I figured I could spend a couple of bucks for a refresher course in Latin Dance. I went to a fantastic ballroom in Northern NJ, about 10 minutes away from where I live. As class went on in the front classroom, a social was going on in the ballroom. Everyone there had shown up dressed far more formally than I had, and they all glided across the floor with the greatest of ease. I was amazed at the range of ages of the dancers, and how kind everyone seemed to be toward one another.

Back in the classroom, I danced with Umberto – a sweet guy from Brazil who really knew the Salsa, but struggled a bit with everything else. We stomped through the Meringue, Rumba and Cha Cha before the class ended. It surprised me that I didn’t have as good of a time as I thought I would. The best, most enjoyable part about Ballroom Dance is dancing with my favorite partner, who is presently thousands of miles away. I’ll stick it out until he comes back, and once he does Ginger will have her Fred back. And Fred’s getting his ass dragged back out on the dance floor.

Until then, she’s gonna try to stay busy.

Tomorrow I’ll attempt, with my Sister-in-Law, to get tickets from the Box Office lottery to see “Wicked”. I’ll let you know how it goes.
-Aj

Last week I got up the nerve to sign up for an improv comedy class in Manhattan. I paid my tuition, and instantly my nerves changed over to waves of happiness. I was able to get up in the morning, go to work without feeling sick, and go home in peace. It felt incredible.

This morning, I got an email from the school - my classes have been cancelled. I'm devistated.

Not letting this rip me up, I am trying to have my registration moved over to a more advanced Musical Improv class (my dream). I'll see if they let me get away without the prerequisite (improv 301). We'll see.

Alright - a small set-back. The point of this post is that I'm not going back to the person I was before I signed up for 101. This is a small step back. There will be larger ones. I am not taking it as a sign.

I will write comedy. It will happen.

I've finally said it - out in public and not just in my head, to my husband or to my closest friends.

John Badesdow, don't fail me now...

-Aj
Comedic Celebrity

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Damn those Johnson & Johnson baby product ads.

One came on this morning, and I (swear to you) unexpectedly started yelping.

"AHHH!!! CUTE BABY!!!! AHHHH"

They showed the baby in the tub. The pounding in my head began. The baby then laughed while the "Mom" rubbed it's little baby back. The pounding in my head grew louder.

As they flipped to the product shot, I found myself yelling at the screen "MORE BABY!!!"

The TV responded to my demand with the little bugger staring into the camera from the tub, looking almost edible. The pounding began to travel down my spine into my chest. The ad then showed little soapy baby toes. "TOES!!!! AHHHH!"

One more product shot, then to the baby, with it's face perched happily on top of Mother's shoulder. The pounding had sunk deep into my heart. I needed to make it stop.

With that, I walked over to my counter, flipped the lid of my pillbox, sucked down a birth control pill with my morning coffee, and sighed.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

For my approaching 30th, I’ve decided focus on 2 goals; loose some weight and improve the quality of my life by switching careers.

The latter of the two landed me in the self-help section of Barnes and Noble on Monday. Not usually my source for insight. I used to be head of that department when I worked there about 5 years ago. You see, all of the books are the same - they describe the approach that the author took to find "the way". For $15-$25, they'll tell you how they did it. Apparently their path may work for you too!

NO! It’s cheating if you use someone else’s approach, damn it! The challenge is to find your own way!

The usual catch to "seeking the way" is that you have to find the path by living. I haven’t felt like I’ve been living anytime outside of the weekends. So it being 9:30 pm Monday in a B&N, I had a moment of weakness. I needed the crib nothes. I bought the book. I read 100 pages before going to bed.

It’s not bad.

Apparently my “social self” has been protecting my “essential self” from getting hurt, and in this protection has altered my life path away from what I love. Don’t get me wrong - I appreciate the protection from my essential self's need to eat entire pizzas, urge to spend all of my cash on concert tickets, Chinese candy & bubble tea, and desire to get a Hello Kitty tattooed on my ass (which would have easily cost me my marriage). But I guess in the case of vocational guidance it is time to let my Id out for a bit of a walk…at least that's what the book says.

Sitting down with my essential self, she told me that she really, really likes puppies and cupcakes. I said fine – that’s cool. But we have to look beyond that a bit. How about work? The day to day?

It said “FUN!!! Is it too late to be a ballerina?”

“Uh, yeah. Lost that chance about 20 years and 50 pounds ago.”

That made her sad for a bit. She sulked, then said “Alright, I’ll think about it more. Unfortunately my muscles have atrophied a bit, so it might take me some time to come up with other stuff. Are you sure about the ballet? Really?"

“Yes.”

So she’s taking some time to mull things over. Before our conversation was over, we discussed "that writing thing" I've been doing, "that art thing" I never persued, and "The 3 years in College Radio" I never did anything with. After a few laughs about my former aspirations to become a Speech Pathologist, I said I'd try to be in touch again soon but I had to go - time for work.

On Wednesday, I “celebrated” my 2nd year anniversary at my current job. That morning, I walked into my boss’s office disenfranchised, frustruated, and confused. I walked out with the consolation prize of an extra week of vacation.

I wish it made a difference. My essential self responded with indifferent sigh.

Thursday, March 09, 2006


It is hot.

My back is damp with sweat. My stomach aches in that "dull pain/too warm for movement" kind of way. The skin of my eyelids is sticking to itself.

Outside, it is 45 degrees. No, not centigrade.

We have no control over the heat in our apartment. We don't have to pay for it. Considering how much it costs to heat a living space, we feel no right to complain. "As per lease agreement", heat turns on every year on October 1st and stays on until May 1st. I find that whenever the outside temperature is at around 35 degrees, the apartment is quite comfortable. One degree below, and I will be perpetually layered under blankets (which is a bitch when cooking or attempting to stay warm going into or coming out of a shower). During these times, I have a sweater that is my dedicated sleeping sweater. I wear it under a down comforter while lying next to my "furnace" of a husband.

One degree above 35, or in tonight's case 10 degrees above, and the apartment spikes at around 90.

I just woke up out of a heat-induced nap to see that the time was 9:15. I thought it was morning, but eventually I came out of my delirium and relized that it was still Thursday night and I had been passed out for about 45 minutes. Sitting up, I realized the sweat had caused the elastic in my bra to leach onto my body. I took off the bra, only for my breasts to drop and stick to my ribcage. Nice.

The dry heat has once again dried out my sinuses, and has thickened my mucus. I begin to clear my throat - which sounds more like a cat trying to cough up a hairball. I get up for a glass of water, and nearly take a header into the kitchen - damn I'm dizzy. I glimpse at my reflection in the hallway mirror. My face is shining - blackheads are now greasy trenches and former "small blemishes" have now blossomed into full-blown white heads. I feel lovely.

Opening windows does not help. There is no circulation in this tiny one bedroom. As the heat continues to blast, I consider putting on the air conditioner. Yes, the air conditioner. Reminder: this is in the beginning of March. Instead, I stumble into the bedroom. My feet are sticking to the hardwood floor. Leaning against the wall (as not to fall over), I crack open the window and steady a fan into the opening. The gauge on the fan says its 95 degrees.

I have been typing for about 15 minutes, and that same gauge now says 78. I believe I have found my haven for the night. I would have continued to watch "I Love Toys" on VH1, but I would be risking complete dehydration by spending another hour passed out and stuck on the futon in my living-room sauna. It's not safe out there - I might get heat stroke.

Before I lay me down to sleep, I will pray the Lord my upstairs neighbor's sanity to keep.

They've got it far worse - heat rises.

Thursday, March 02, 2006


My husband is turning 30 on Monday. I will be 30 in April. When the years sneak up, it causes for reflection. He is in that place now, and I've been spending some time there as well. I'll be back in a couple of days when we come up for air. If you're interested, I may even tell you a bit about what we've discovered on our trip. Thanks for checking in - promise to be back very soon.

With love,
-Aj