Saturday, December 07, 2002
the subject just came up...

i'd like to make something crystal clear. there is a fine point of linguistic distinction that i think many of you are not fully aware of. and since my clarification is so brilliant,
ryan c. suggested i tell all you good people. so i will:

there is a subtle, yet vital, difference between the words naked and nekkid. while you may never have realized it, you have been making a grave colloquial error which may have led to some sticky misunderstandings.

let me rescue you from this quagmire of verbal inadequacy:

naked is where you are simply in a state of undress - you have no actual clothes on. i.e.: "i took a shower, i was naked."

whereas: nekkid is being in a state of undress due to some naughtiness, some hanky-panky, some nudge-nudge-wink-wink, some 'hop on the good foot and do that baddd thing, yeah!' nekkid is being naked with the naughty. i.e.: "i took a shower with the whole football team, nekkid."

i know you are all smart enough to pick up the distinction. i hope this has enlightened your day.

this word fact was brought to you by the letter N.

love, krissa .... 12:02 AM ... link!

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Friday, December 06, 2002
the idiot would like to clarify:

realizing my incredibly shameful and totally unintended sexual innuendo - OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD [blush].

deciding to take it in stride and point my finger and say, "i did not have sexual snowball relations with
that man." - priceless.

for those of you smarter than me, i meant engage in snowball fight with, not this completely other snowballing activity. for everyone else, there's mastercard.

love, krissa .... 8:55 PM ... link!

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to the victor go the chapped hands.

what's the best way to top off a snowy new york city day?

eating fabulous cupcakes at magnolia bakery, and an impromptu snowball fight in an empty park.

for the record, i managed to snowball
ryan c. in the face twice, and he's still talking to me. now that's a southern gentleman.


love, krissa .... 7:37 PM ... link!

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Thursday, December 05, 2002
blanketing the transgressions ...

snow in new york is like no where else in the world. when it's bitterly cold, and you're battling your path against the wind and everyone's face looks harsh and edgy, it's easy to curse winter with all your might, shake your puny fist at the unrepentant heavens ...

but then, in a fit of unpredictable kindness, the skies open and down comes the redeeming fluff of snow. go outside. catch a few in your hand and smile. look around - you'll see everything blanketed with a downy inch of frost. suddenly, new york is transformed. the trashy grey gutters are pillows of snow. abandoned bicycles become frozen sculptures. offensive neon signs are somehow charmingly muted by the little formations of white glitter that diffuse the glow of times square through the cascading flakes.

just stand there. notice that your exhaled cigarette smoke isn't any different than the puffs of breath you make when you breathe. watch the currents of lazy snowflakes descend, whirling and twirling in between the cavernous trenches of manhattan's skyline. watch the people scurry by, more aware of their feet than usual. everyone suddenly becomes less threatening, coated in this sheen of purity. everyone is cleansed, everyone is equal. our sin city has a brief respite from its harshness, its brutal honesty, its blazing signature of glitz and filth. it's forgiveness, this snow.

the snow even mutes the sound, giving cars a cushion to drive by silently. sound becomes deep, muffled through a pillow. you can stand on the street corner, and people can rush by you, trying not to fall. and you can sing to yourself:

i love the winter weather,
because the two of us can get together.
there's nothing sweeter, finer,
when it's nice and warm
i can hold my baby closer to me,
and collect the kisses that are due me,
i love the winter weather,
because i've got your love to keep me warm.

and for a few minutes, standing in the shimmering snow, you think how nice that would be.

or at least, i do.

love, krissa .... 9:28 PM ... link!

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take that, gods of winter.

i stayed home yesterday, riddled with a stuffy nose and a volatile stomach. i slept until 1 [okay, 1:30]. i watched a movie in the middle of the day. i baked a spice cake, and then i frosted it. all of this made me feel a lot better.

but that's not the most exciting news in my life right now. since erin and i decided to go on holiday together in march, a few months ago, we've been bouncing around the contingent united states trying to decide where to spend our precious days of freedom. san francisco? between the hotels, the expensive food and transport, and fending off neo-hippies, we'd spend about 700 dollars each. florida? during spring break? hell no. we settled on the remote dream of someplace warm, inexpensive, where we wouldn't have to stay in a hotel, where we'd be a five-minute walk from the beach, and where we could drink coconut juice outta the coconut with fun-loving people in an atmosphere of paradise.

but where? where was this place?

and then it hit me, and i realized what genius must feel like.

brasil. land of my mother tongue, land of my crazy serpentine engulfing family, land of dear friends with flats on copacabana beach, land of two dollar steak sandwiches at cervantes, land of caipirinhas and feijoada, land of black-and-white sidewalks and all-night dance clubs .... brasil.

so here's the new plan: forget san francisco. in march, you will find erin and i spending our holiday in an apartment in bustling copacabana - we'll wake up in the mornings, drink coffee on the balcony, head down to the beach. lunch will be little sandwiches and pasteis from the beach hut. we'll smoke cigarettes and wear little bikinis and watch the gorgeous brasilian men play beach volleyball. in the afternoon, we'll stroll the streets, looking for trinkets or trouble, whichever comes first. nights will be spent in cozy little bars, or strolling on the beach, or wandering through the evening fairs, or hitting it up at the clubs. rinse, repeat.


and here's the beach.

and rua visconde de piraja!

*sigh* it's like i'm going home.

love, krissa .... 7:01 PM ... link!

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Tuesday, December 03, 2002
and he will make you laugh.

this never, ever fails to cheer me up. made by matthieu.

love, krissa .... 9:29 PM ... link!

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alert: the brass monkey balls have frozen right off.

do you know where that expression comes from? my father told me this, because he read it on the internet. he told me that back in The Day [you know. a long time ago. don't bug me.], ships used to have cannons on them, with cannonballs stacked next to the cannon for speedy demolition of neighboring war ships and/or small vessels with hungry orphans, whatever it was the british armada was attacking that day. so, the most efficient way to stack the cannonballs was in a pyramidal formation, with a triangular base of grooves to hold the bottom-most tier of cannonballs, on which the others were stacked.

with me so far?

well, the most effective material to build these cannonballs was brass, so the supports that held the cannonballs were called brass monkeys. and brass is an element that shrinks in incredibly cold weather, so when the temperature would drop below freezing, the cannonballs would contract, and the pyramid they were stacked into usually fell down because the balls had slipped out of formation.

they called this kind of weather 'cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey.'

and none of this is true. at all. according to
these people, this lovely little tale [pun intended] is pure spun fiction.

now, it has come to pass that my father has told me an un-truth. what this means is: you are all not real. the world has become an antithesis, a figment of some sick imagination. the universe as i know it has ceased to exist. you are all simply little bits of space-dust with expressive faces and internet access.

do you see why the brass monkey story has to be true? forget the internet .... my father is never wrong.

in related news: in new york city, it is, in fact, cold enough to freeze brass monkey balls off, literally or figuratively. that means it's below zero.

and please don't go telling me how you survived for five years living in minsk wearing nothing but a polar bear-skin loincloth, and that i should count myself lucky. at last count, i was wearing four layers of wool and three pairs of socks. i'm crabby, cold, and i can't have a cigarette because parts of my hand would break off if i exposed them to the elements. i don't care how cold it is where you are - screw you, people in alaska, norway, and the baltic states.

love, krissa .... 7:20 PM ... link!

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Monday, December 02, 2002
you think it's like this but really it's like this.

waking up this morning was especially hard. it took me a minute to comprehend my surroundings - by process of elimination. no, this room does not have the piney smell of my bedroom in providence. it smells instead like incense and cigarettes. no, this bed is not surrounded by copacetic beige walls and a few childhood paintings. instead, the bed is tucked into the corner of a low-slung, cluttered room, underneath a window streaming with murky diffused winter sunlight.

i struggled free of bedsheets only to curl up in the dining room, wrapped in a blanket to preserve my body heat against the stiffening cold. i stared at my cigarette until i had grown an inch-thick head of ash. i gulped down my coffee and told the little girl in my head to shut up because we were going to work whether she liked it or not. padding to the bathroom, she launched her unreasonable campaign: she begged me while i washed my face. think of something! no, i told her firmly, scrubbing my face dry as if to defend against the attack of her demands. the plumbing broke! the apartment is flooded! she pleads. no, i said as i put my contacts in. you're very very [fake cough] sick! no, i said as i shiver my way into work clothes. i know! you never made it back from rhode island! you're stuck somewhere! no, i sighed as i bundled up for the bluster outside. no, no, no i think as i walk to the subway, board the subway, ride the subway ... all the while wondering if i'd won the battle against that desperate little girl yet.

upon successfully arriving at my subway stop without throwing a temper tantrum or turning around, i treated myself to a large tea and madeleine cookies at starbucks. i smiled at being the first one to arrive at our office, despite the earlier desperate pleas from my inner child to invent catastrophe rather than go to work.

so, i am here. it's finally lunch time. i've opened mail, chatted about thanksgiving, made phone calls, finished time sheets, signed for packages - all without kicking and screaming and pleading to be let go. it doesn't matter that by three o'clock, i love my job. it doesn't matter that when i get home from work, i feel the satisfaction of deserving my relaxation, of having Accomplished Something today. it is only the mornings that i fight the selfish little child inside who only wants to stay in bed, eat cookies, and be pampered.

paying your bills may be adult. living alone may be mature. saving money may be responsible. but this: getting up in the morning and doing it whether you want to or not - this, finally, is what it must mean to be a grownup.

love, krissa .... 8:29 PM ... link!

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