January 20, 2011


I'd like to officially acknowledge that SJDE has the best taste of any person I've ever met in all of time. Everything (slight exaggeration) he ever recommends to me (even when I refuse to listen to it, read it, watch it, or look it up for months after he recommends it to me, and even when the first time I listen to it I say, "Nah, it's okay, but I'm not in love with it") eventually ends up on my list of favorite things. I'd like to point out a few such things (in no particular order):

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
Sweet Disposition by Temper Trap
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
Free Sigur Ros Music (still working on loving this)
No One's Gonna Love You and The Funeral by Band of Horses
My Name is Asher Lev by Chaim Potok
Intervention and Keep the Car Running by Arcade Fire
In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez
Generator^First Floor by Freelance Whales
The last 10 seconds of this Nike ad

And last, but not least, thxthxthx.com

Which brings me to my point:

Gratitude journals.

I've been trying to start one for like maybe a million years ever since President Eyring said it would be a good idea to look for the hand of the Lord in our lives, but everything I've tried seemed so cheesy and ridiculous. Then I saw thxthxthx.com and everything changed.

For example, Dear Jajaja.

After perusing the blog, I realized that I'd found the solution to the dilemma. While I may or may not be approaching this from the same angle as Ms. Leah, I feel like this is going to be a good step in the right direction for my gratitude. Especially inside this lovely reproduction of Hokusai's The Great Wave off Kanagawa.

Dear Taco Seasoning,
Thank you for the way you, in your plastic baggie remind me of how ridiculously cheap I am about ingredients and everything else in the whole wide world (expcept jeans) and how Macsen's ownership of everything I'll ever wish I had will always compensate.

Dear Purple, 
Thank you for the streamers, the balloons, the sign on the whiteboard, and the bottles of nail polish. You remind me of Kaitlin.

Dear 0213,
Thank you for the way I am almost always sleeping by the time you come around. Hope I don't see you for a while.

Dear Gluten,
Thank you for being such a ready excuse to not eat things I didn't even want to eat anyways.

(More on gluten to come...)

Dear Sammy,
Thank you for your excellent taste in everything from women to music to humor to proper use of facebook to poetry to gelato to the proper function and use of napkins and for your consistent wearing of sweaters.  

January 14, 2011


Yesterday I was talking to a friend of mine on Gchat. I was bragging about my arms. I had just finished lifting, and sometimes I do that. Unnamed friend asked me if my arms were my favorite feature. Without even thinking about it, I said, "No," and started listing the things about myself I like better than my arms. There are maybe hundreds, but let's just list a couple, for sake of time.
My wingspan, for example. Although, I guess that does include my arms. It's 73.75 inches to be exact. You know how they say your wingspan is supposed to be the same as your height? I'm 70.5 inches tall, so you do the math.  Michael Phelps has nothing on me, except amazing speed, deltoids, and testosterone, but I digress.
Also, my long fingers. I almost didn't list them because we don't want people thinking I have Marfan Syndrome, do we? (Don't worry, it's been suggested).
But all of this is superfluous. We all know that my real favorite part of my body is my legs. Specifically, their lengthy, ropy quality. They are the reason I wear Rock and Republic jeans. With a standard 36-inch inseam, Rocks help me work the extra length to my advantage.
I've had many discussions with just about everyone about the length of my femurs and the time my anthropology major roommate Marci saw my DEXA scan and said, "Wow! If I saw your skeleton, I'd probably think it was a boy because your femurs are so long." I considered it to be a great compliment. And apparently, it's a recurring theme in my life. In fact, just yesterday, my friend told me that his first impression of me was (and I quote), "Wow. This is one leggy girl." First impression?! YES! Up until that moment, I thought that most people seriously underestimated my leg length. Usually until the moment they see my bike on the trainer and try to ride it.

(I am in serious need of a bike wash, thanks to my last outdoor ride and the subsequent biking through a construction zone. I know. I'm just too wimpy since it's about 24 degrees outside).

It inevitably follows, "Wow. Your legs are REALLY long." Yes they are. Thank you, very much. I'd like to submit the following photo that I came across, conveniently, last night.

That's me with my boy John. Thank you, Mom for the beginnings of my fascination with sunglasses. Those look absolutely amazing. Thank you for your excellent taste. Also, the sparkly jelly shoes. Great job, mom. Absolutely brilliant. But that's beside the point.

Check out those gams.

January 11, 2011

Adventures in Snowshoeing

So it starts like this: my girl Michelle comes home from her mission. Michelle is legitimately the coolest person ever. 5'11" to start with which means she's automatically on my top 25 favorite people list. So Michelle invites me to a birthday party Friday night where we finalize our plans for snowshoeing on Saturday. We'll go at 2 pm since that will make it warm enough to not be completely and totally miserable. Saturday, I pick her up at her parents house where we come to find out that not only does she have 2 pairs of snowshoes (bless her), but the shoes come with hiking (snowshoeing?) poles and cute and convenient waterproof carrying cases. We're so excited. Michelle, being the intelligent young lady that she is, is wearing boots, winter gloves, ski pants and a parka. I, being self-described hard core, am wearing leg warmers, my favorite Spandex New Balance running tights over another pair of tights, running shoes and a North Face jacket.
We get to Big Springs, a nice location up Provo canyon past South Fork and start along the trail. A little cold at first, but after about 5 minutes, I think I wore just the right amount of Spandex for a lovely day on the trail.
At this point, the trail comes to a fork. and we take the left fork, but shoot, it starts taking us back down the mountain, so we turn around and head back to the right because it feels like the wrong direction.
Suddenly, we're walking through bushes. Hmmm...that's interesting because the last time I was at Big Springs, there were no bushes on the snow shoe trail, and wait a second, there was not river on both sides of the trail.Hmmm...snowshoeing in the river could be sketchy and/or freezing. "Hey Michelle, do you think we should turn around?" "Yeah, probably." We have every intention of just going back down and following the left fork to see what happens.
I go to take the lead, Michelle takes a step off the trail and sinks into the snow. Remember, she's my height, and is up to almost her hip in snow. This happens all the time when participating in any snow sport, really. No big deal. Until Michelle says, "Uh, Liz, I'm stuck." Michelle is really, literally, stuck. As in can't move her foot, can't move the snowshoe, stuck.
So, we do what any normal people would do, we start digging her out using our hiking poles, my hands in 99 cent magic stretchy gloves, and Michelle (smart girl) her winter gloves. I'm sitting on the snow in my Spandex and running shoes thinking maybe I should have dressed more appropriately for the weather?
We finally get Michelle's foot out of the boot, but the snowshoe and boot are stuck. We can't get the boot out, we can't get the snowshoe out. No luck with any of it. Digging and digging and digging.

Actually, at this point, our hands are soaked, Michelle's stocking foot is wrapped in the extra sweater I brought along in case it got too cold, the hiking poles are bent and/or in pieces, and we really just can't get the snowshoe out.
At some point I say. "Hmmm...maybe we should say a prayer?"
Michelle: "Great idea!"
Me: "Why didn't we have a six year old with us to think of that like 20 minutes ago?"
Seriously, why are 25 year olds so much less likely to stop and pray about stuff?
But that's not the point of this post.
Anyway, digging, digging, digging. Michelle using a snowshoe as a snow removal device. When we finally get to the actual snowshoe, we realize that the reason Michelle was so stuck is because her snowshoe has actually gone through the river into the mud at the river bottom and is stuck in mud. Luckily, the mud is actually quite pleasant smelling and the water is really warm (sarcasm), so the whole process is quite easy. Using Michelle's winter gloves, we reach through the water at the bottom of the river and finally after some muddy splashing and a heart rate in the 160s, pull the snowshoe out (thank heavens).

All in all, after about 90 minutes (16 of which we spent snowshoeing), we head back to the car, alive, well, and in one piece. Soaking wet in running shoes and Spandex. Michelle, being the kind young lady that she is, lets me wear the nice gloves, and I start talking about this interesting article I was just reading about treatment of frostbite. "Did you know that the reason people get frostbite is because it makes the cells literally freeze and crystallize? Isn't that interesting? Then all the proteins get denatured and when it thaws, they can't go back to normal because everything is all messed up." Leave it to a nurse, eh?
On the way, we come across a woman and her little Scottie dog wearing an argyle sweater and (kid you not) snow booties. Adorable. (Also slightly embarrassing since they are actually going faster than we are?). We also see some women, maybe in their 50's one of whom just face-planted into the snow, "Hey guys, I'm stuck." Her friends are teasing her and Michelle and I get all serious, "No really guys, you can get stuck. We almost couldn't get out just up on the trail a little ways." They laugh us off. Heh. Good luck getting her out, y'all. We're gonna head back to our car, hopefully in time to avoid hypothermia and/or denatured proteins in our big toes. No good Samaritans, here, just a couple of cold nurses (one of whom is sopping wet) who want to find a heater.
Michelle and I are planning on going snowshoeing soon.
Feel free to come along.
Maybe next time I'll wear appropriate gear.
Or just bring a shovel?