31 December 2009

0 december: a revue

"you forgot to tell me a possible side effect of reading that book is growing a vagina."

"you just can't spear that."

"it's really hard to write a tournament scene about an imaginary sport."

"oh yes! we have hand wipes! oh no... they're coffee creamers."

"i think 2010 is going to be the year of the vagina."

"you're my only bitch."
"oh that's sweet."
"isn't it? in a non-domestic violence way."

"when the most recent activity prior to sex is the birthing of a child, it is hard for one to focus."

"yeah, well you can tell him that messy girl he met in the elevator left a mess in your toilet for him."

"given the weather this week, i am concerned that going up the back might not be the greatest idea."

"MA'AM, ALL of the shirts we have are bisexual."

"maybe your pelvis is your stress place."

"i have taught my mother how to use amazon.com. she is truly a liberated woman now."

"there’s something about canada that makes him think he’s in a wee and whimsical, easily traversable land."

"my life goals today involve eating an apple and taking a shower."

"wow. auschwitz has nothing on you."

"i have no doubt it will end in failure... and cake."

"well, as embarrassing as it is for us as nobodies to stand around in front of people looking awkward, i can imagine it's only worse to stand around in front of people looking awkward when you're famous."

"i have to say, croftie looks more and more like a relative with each new photo."

"i must admit also that when i reached for the condom, the thought 'ooh! caroline will be so proud!' did flash through my mind."

"well, you know how i feel about a good saga."

29 December 2009

6 oline on ice

i've always been fairly certain that were i ever to have pursued a figure skating career as a young lass, i would have been highly successful. my career in socked-feet-on-carpet-skating alone should be proof enough. i mean, i broke a wrist and sprained an ankle. if that didn't forebode olympic glory, i don't know what does. but i only ever skated on actual ice maybe three or four times, if even that, and it's hard to achieve olympian level athleticism in ice skating when one so seldom skates on ice.

Katie I and i (and let's pause briefly to marvel at what a whole entire world of awesome fun that is to say) have talked about skating together for years. and i think we're finally ready. she owns her skates. i'm buying mine. at long last we're going to embrace our destiny and take to the ice. at which time i fully expect to fall flat on my face within minutes and finally confront the fact that i was, in fact, never meant to be a figure skater. not then, not now, not ever. and i'm ok with that. because put some michael bolton on your boombox and give me a pair of socks, and i'll tear up the carpet with single salchows. i suspect there are few girls who can brag about that.

23 December 2009

2 tradition!

we here in the house of oline love us some traditions. so it was that last night the vieve and i piled up on the fainting couch under the furry blanket to watch that great holiday classic, a very brady christmas. and to cry and cry and cry.

there isn't too much you need to know about the first 97 minutes of AVBC. imdb neatly summarizes it as "the entire brady family manages to overcome personal obstacles to spend a happy holiday together." well said.

what you need to know, what i feel it is time for you all to experience is the great climactic scene. and because pictures of people singing are always enjoyable, let's break it down:

mr. brady: here i go ill-advisedly into The Collapsed Structure.

mike roberts (the scrooge of AVBC): oh no!
The Collapsed Structure is collapsing further,
collapsing upon mr. brady,
who only just ill-advisedly entered it.

(when i was a kid The Collapsed Structure
always looked SO scary.
now it looks more like a dumpster upended.)

mrs. brady: yes, i will deign to speak with you, local broadcaster,
since you have conveniently coordinated your
microphone with my ensemble.

alice: i disapprove.

bobby: look at me. i am emoting.

cindy: hey, mom, do you remember that time you were
sick and we thought you wouldn't get your voice back
in time to sing "o come all ye faithful" on christmas eve?

mrs. brady: why yes, yes i do...

dear viewers who may not remember that...

THIS is what it looked like.

[actual AVBC dialog]
cindy: sometimes i wish i still believed in santa claus.

[actual AVBC dialog]
mrs. brady: well, cindy, big girls can have wishes too.

mrs. brady: maybe if i sing, my wish will come true.

cindy: oh, we're going to sing now. ok.

peter: oh, so we're singing.
this is just like that time we sang "sunshine day"
on tv in pastel jumpsuits to win the money to pay for
mom and dad's anniversary present when stupid jan
miscalculated the cost of the engraving.
ps. even though my head is a little square,
aren't i still totally the cutest brady boy?

mrs. brady: yes, we're singing.

grumpy trucker dude behind the bradys:
i do not approve of all this singing.

mr. brady:
what is that sound? why, it's people singing!
wait... it's the entire brady family singing!
why, i think i'll just overcome the personal obstacle of
this here Collapsed Structure so we can spend
a happy holiday together.

bobby: so we're still singing...

bobby: shouldn't he be coming out by now?

alice: i'm a little old for all this singing.

cindy: maybe if i hide behind her,
they won't now i've stopped singing.

mrs. brady: KEEP SINGING!


bobby: DUDE.

alice: seriously. too old for this.

phillip: jan's hair smells so good.

jan: i wish i was marsha.

mr. brady: i'll overcome the personal obstacle of
The Collapsed Structure very slowly so mrs. brady
will have ample time to finish the chorus.
then we can all spend a happy holiday together.

mrs. brady: it's mike! my singing helped him
overcome the personal obstacle of
the Collapsed Structure so now
the entire Brady family can spend
a happy holiday together.

bobby: this is the finest emoting i have ever done onscreen.

jan: stupid marsha.

cindy: i am totally going to cross this line.

bobby: i shall continue emoting.

alice: maybe i shouldn't have worn this housecoat?

mr. brady: i have come out of the Collapsed Structure.
please stop that singing.

mr. brady: and i'm FREE!
now the entire brady family can spend
a happy holiday together!


mr. brady: the entire brady family has managed
to overcome personal obstacles.
let's spend a happy holiday together
and try to ignore the fact that i will die of AIDS in four years.

22 December 2009

5 keeping tabs

i heart tabloids because they ask the really, really difficult, culturally important questions. like... um... is robert pattinson the new james dean? by which they're not asking is he cool in a rebellious, unwashed, rocking the denim tuxedo kind of way. no. they're asking could he be four steps of photoshop morphing removed from the actual james dean? discuss amongst yourselves.

21 December 2009

0 the applicant

december 21, 2009

city of chicago
attn: sign division
chicago, il 60601

dear city of chicago,

i am writing in application for the position of deputy director for the city of chicago's sign division. i am wholly aware that this is not an actual position for which you are accepting applications, however, i believe that, given the profligacy of the sign division's output, my talents and skills could be of tremendous value within this integral area of chicago's governance.

it is my fervent belief that one must be fluent in the language of one's field. as you may or may not know, i am half-deaf. and though i have not chosen to learn sign language, i believe i should be very adept should i ever pursue it. such fluency would, of course, directly translate into my excelling as the deputy director of the sign division.

as you may note from my resume, i have also spent many years working with very old people. therefore, i have considerable experience with large fonts and increased line spacing. i believe this invaluable training has equipped me to bring a renewed vibrancy to the sign division's products so they will have increased impact on both a visual and emotional scale. there is, after all, nothing quite like the spark in someone's eye when they see a sign.

i know that the position of deputy director requires tremendous versatility and flexibility, traits i have repeatedly demonstrated throughout my career through my passionate desire to learn sign language and my liberal employment of large fonts.

my resume is attached for your review. i look forward to hearing from you.


18 December 2009

0 make over

so the youth hostel has undergone a branding shift.
is it just me or does their new sign make it look like their mascot
is hightailing it with everyone's stuff?

17 December 2009

8 a part

when i was five or six, just after jessica died, an unfortunately early viewing of the red shoes jumbled up with my love of the three musketeers to lead me to a very firm belief that if i did not perform well in ballet, a man in a blouse and bearing a saber would sever my hands at the wrist while i slept.

i went to elaborate lengths to prevent this, deliberately sleeping on my stomach, fists balled into my chest. because then the musketeer would have to roll me over and wake me. and being awake while one's wrists were being severed seemed somehow dramatically less scary than a saber slicing across them as i dreamed.

i say all this now because partner is very sick.

and she will be fine. because she is always fine. because no matter what has happened in the past or how scary things have gotten, we have all of us always been fine.

and yet, even though i know this, even though i am the cheerleader of Love Not Fear and i know everything always unfailingly works out in the end, even though i believe all of that more firmly than i ever believed in the man in the blouse, there are still those nights.

nights when, no matter how tough and independent a 28-year-old woman you try to be, you wake up on your stomach, fists balled into your chest, and the old familiar prick of fear in the dark leaves you a little girl waiting for someone to come along and cut her up.

15 December 2009

3 the holiday train

so every year when christmas rolls around, the CTA whips out the holiday train. presumably they think we have all been waiting all year to ride the holiday train because it's arrival is unfailingly heralded as a huge big deal. posters appear. articles are written. and an elaborate schedule is distributed in one of those city of chicago emails that always makes me wonder how the city of chicago got my email address.

the holiday train is coming!!!

it is at this moment that i most sympathize with ebenezer scrooge. because i do not know that i am a fan of the holiday train. though i should enthusiastically support anything that forces men fronting as santa to sit in the chicago winter open air, i simply cannot reconcile myself to a form of public transit that is a cross between a bing crosby christmas special and a game of candyland sprung to life.


14 December 2009

0 the Romantic Getaway

as you may recall, the flowerpot of fortune swung my way
and i won a pair of plane tickets for a Romantic Getaway some months ago.
thus, croftie and i dragged our tired selves down to o'hare at 3 a.m. last friday,
caught a flight at sun up and headed down to memphis for some romance.
and barbecue and dinosaurs and petite fours and parents.
a tribute in photographs: