Our new place

I love our new place, and I’m also so excited about getting a dog. My mom told me I was obsessed and that I needed to stop talking about it so much. Add that to the list of things your mom can tell you but your husband can’t.

One of the things I like best about our new place is that I can do yard work, make art, and have a little garden outside. I like to stay busy, like my Dad, and this place is perfect for that. Our condo in Chicago was great, but there wasn’t much room for piddling and this place has tons of room outside and the weather is always lovely. Plus it has a garage/studio that’s bigger than my studio in grad school, a working fireplace, an eclectic neighborhood.

We ordered our guest bed before we even ordered our own mattress, which was a subconscious indication of how excited we are to have visitors. Hope you’ll all come visit. Maybe we’ll have a dog by then. 🙂


Who are we?

Based on the few possessions in our new place, I’m not sure we are an adult married couple.  I think we might be a couple of college kids. So far, we accumulated an HDTV, a grill, a six pack in the frig, and an air mattress.  All we need for a complete undergrad transformation is a bean bag game in the driveway.

We went to a street fair in our neighborhood last night, which was awesome. They had a great blues musician playing named guitar shorty and of course plenty of greasy food. While we were there, we got a tote bag for signing up for The New York Times, which had their logo on it, and we picked up an Obama yard sign from the county Democrats. At one point Mike was carrying both the tote bag and the yard sign. It was hilarious. We had transformed ourselves into big city liberals.

I wonder who we’ll be next.

We’re in Chargers Territory Now

I was at Fry’s Electronics buying a TV and cable modem and the cashier was a young guy.  He saw my name and said, “Are you a Chargers Fan?”  I told him, not really, that I just moved here from Chicago.  I asked him why, and he said, “Because you’re name is the same name as the best Charger player!!!” with tons of enthusiasm.

I told him that not only is my name the same as Shawne Merriman (Defensive End), but that my wife’s name is the exact same, just with one more “e”.  His response, “OH MY GOD!!! That is so, so amazing!”  While he said this, he was bringing his arms together kind of like the Hulk Hogan flex pose.

And then he told me that my credit card company froze my card.  Turns out someone in London was trying to charge a bunch of money to my card.

We Found A House

No more SD hostel for us. We found this posting on Craigslist a few days ago and said to each other that we thought the place was perfect for us. Now, we’ve been burned on Craigslist before, so we didn’t get our hopes up too much. But we were definitely ready to move in somewhere, so when we visited this house and liked it, we told the agent that we would take it. He was ready to move on it too, so we wrote a check on the spot and moved in immediately.

We are really happy with the house. It has 2 bedrooms, a working fireplace, stained glass windows, relatively new kitchen appliances, hardwood floors, a wood deck in the back, W/D, and a garage that has been converted into a workshop that Shawnee’s going to use as a studio. And it’s close to a bus stop for me and there’s lots of plants and some space for Shawnee to grow a garden. And they allow dogs and it was $200 cheaper than most other places we looked at. In short, it’s perfect for us.

Shawnee spent most of the day yesterday digging up dead vines from the backyard.  It was very cute.  At one point, she pulled off a clump of dead vines that was the size of a 3-person body bag.  I think we’re going to be shoving those things into the trash bin for a month.

It’s all about priorities

Despite doing my fantasy football draft from the front seat of the Honda while we were driving across country and having extremely limited access to internet for the first three weeks of the season, I am still undefeated with the highest point total in my fantasy football league. Of course, I owe much of my success to my consigliari husband.

This week’s going to be tough though. I’m playing my friend Matt, who is the manager of our league. Joseph Addai, one of my better players, has a bye and another of my go-tos, Deion Branch, has a cut eye lid (poor baby) and is unlikely to play. Matt’s already talkin’ sh*t. Why couldn’t I have drawn my friend Ryan this week, who actually used his first round pick to draft Rex Grossman?


Mike and I have overheard some classic conversational nuggets in the last 24 hours. Here are a few:

Since we’re no longer living on Mike’s firm salary and everything in California is more expensive, we opted to stay at the downtown hostel while we look for a place. We got our own clean room for $60, which is less expensive than any of the grungy hotels we found. On the downside, there is a pay phone just outside our door. At 3:45 this morning a guy called home on it and woke us up. At 5:30, he was still on the phone. I was just about to get up and say something to him when I heard him say,”I got two job offers today, and neither one cared that I just got out of jail!” After hearing this I decided I wasn’t going to say anything to him and went for an early morning run instead.

Mike and I ate at this great sandwich shop in LIttle Italy for lunch. Their menu has four things. A meatball sandwich, a pepper steak sandwich, an Italian sausage, and an eggplant parm sandwich. It was heavenly. Just outside their door, Mike heard an old guy in a fedora say to a younger guy sitting with him, “So, she took care of Carlito while you were in prison, right?” It was like we were on the set of Sopranos.

Our hostel is in the middle of a bar area called the gaslamp district. Thanks to jet lag and our friend on the phone this morning, we managed to take a four hour nap this evening and wake up just when the bars were closing. We went for a walk and overheard two drunk guys talking outside a bar. One guy, who had an unlit cigarette hanging out of his mouth, said to his friend, “What kind of man are you that you need to pay a woman to be with you? All I’m saying is that I think you’re better than that.” The other guy shrugged his shoulders and just said, “Maybe.” The look on his face clearly said he wasn’t.

I’m looking forward to devouring…

5. Traders Joe’s Diner Style Mac and Cheese

4. A big ol’ spinach salad with homemade dressing, walnuts, goat cheese, and fruit

3. Old, stinky, delicious cheeses with salami, prosciutto, grapes, apples, and a warm baguette

2. Queso and fajitas with a giant frozen margarita

1. Rice and Dal

hahaha! Just kidding. My actual number one is a really good cheeseburger and a tub full of fries with an ice cold Dr. Pepper (I’m so excited to be back close to In and Out)
Mike’s list is a little less exciting, but he is pretty passionate about the items in his list. Especially the water. I’ve never seen anyone get so excited about airport bathroom tap water.

5. Tap water

4. Salad

3. Turkey sandwich (taken care of thanks to Sallie!)

2. Any form of beef

1. Mexican food