No wonder my feet hurt

While trying to get into our ticketed area at inauguration and then to the brunch, Melissa and I walked over 5 miles!  You can check out our route here.

And Melissa posted a bunch of our photos on flikr.


Inauguration Update

Our trip has been a roller-coaster of ups and downs.  I haven’t quite processed it all and will write more later, but here are a couple of links I’d like to share.

Melissa twittered our trip.   You can read a timeline of what we did at

Melissa’s Twitter

As you could read on her twitter page, there was some craziness that prevented us from getting in to the actual inauguration.  I found a blog by a guy that had tickets to the same section that we did.  He summed up the problems we had pretty well and had some interesting thoughts on the other aspects of the inauguration as well.


Two things to report

1. Pull out your St. Anthony’s and send Melissa your prayers.  Her inauguration ticket is lost in the mail!    She is driving to Pittsburgh, but we’ve put Mike, rational-thinking, bureaucracy-negotiating, miracle worker extraordinaire, on the case.  If he can’t figure out what happened to it, she and I will skip Pittsburgh adventures and head straight for DC where we’ll try to find someone to help us.

2.  I just read on the Sikh’s official ball webpage thatRand B singerr Charm will be performing:

“Charm will perform one or two popular cover songs such as Mariah Carey’s “Hero” to commemorate president-elect Barack Obama, or hits like “My Heart Will Go On” by Celine Dion, “I’ll Always Love You” in the likes of Whitney Houston, “Natural Woman” by Aretha Franklin, ect.”

It’s sure to be a surreal party now!

Off to the Inauguration!

I teared up on the way to the airport this morning.  Even though it’s supposed to be freezing all weekend, I am just so excited to be going to the inauguration.  I started in cold Iowa, so it only seems fitting that I’m ending my Obama adventures in the cold of DC.

Here’s our itinerary:

Tonight: Arrive in Pittsburgh.  We’re couchin’ it at Melissa’s friend’s house.

Tomorrow: Fun in Pittsburgh!  Visit the Warhol Museum, eat at Primati Brothers, and pilgrimage to The Heinz Museum (It’s like Mecca for ketchup lovers like me).  Then, we’re driving to Melissa’s family’s house in Maryland.

Sunday: Hang out with Melissa’s friends and family

Monday: Lunch with Obama’s Arts Policy Committee in DC and an event at The Kennedy Center featuring Wynton Marsalis and Sandra Day O’Connor.

Tuesday:  Inauguration, jubilation, and celebration! We’re waking up early and getting to DC as early as we can.  At the inauguration, we will will be standing in the silver section, which is directly behind the reflecting pool.  The build-up events start at 9:30 am and the actual swearing in happens at 11:30.    Afterwards, we’re shedding a few layers, throwing on some lipstick, and heading to the Metropolitan Club for brunch with some arts people.  The club is supposed to have a great view of the parade, so we’ll get to watch that and be out of the cold.

We’re not going  to any balls, but if I were, there are two I’d want to hit–one out of comfort and another out of curiosity.  The Black Tie and Boots Ball, which is of course hosted by my home state of Texas has some phenomenal Texas musicians playing.   The other is the Sikh ball (yes, they’re actually hosting a ball) because I haven’t had any dal and rice since India, and I bet I could get some there.   Just kidding!  The Golden temple was one of our favorite places we visited on our trip, and to make a generalizaton, the Sikhs are fascinating, welcoming, and intense people.  I can imagine their ball would be quite an event.

My plane’s here, so I’ve got to go, but I’ll write some updates from DC!

Too much information, but oh well…

We took Sophie on a hike this morning.  Once we summited the little mountain, I let her off the leash to run around.  She scurried under some bushes, and I told Mike, “Oh how cute! She’s exploring!” but it turns out she was really seeking out poo to eat.   The pile she found was from a human, which for some reason seems way grosser than the dog poo she normally eats on our morning walks.  Both Mike and I were gagging at the smell, and we decided that it was a good time to leave.  She walks in front of us when we’re walking though, so the stench of poop breath wafted up our nostrils all the way to the car.

This evening, she got into the trash and ate a  bunch of garbage while we were over at a friend’s house watching the football game.  Now she is bloated up like a whale and has been farting continuously and laying in the same prone position for four hours. She is just pure hotness, that dog.

It’s just a movie

Shawnee and I went to see Marley & Me tonight. It was between that and the Wrestler. I had such a good day already that I wasn’t prepared for 2 hours of watching Mickey Rourke crumble on screen. So we saw Marley & Me.

We sat in the middle of a row of seats.  Had empty seats to either side of us, which was perfect. To my left, there were two empty seats and then two women at the end. The women used the empty seat next to them to hold all the junk food they had purchased (popcorn, sodas, candy–the works).  

Just before showtime, a woman joins the duo to my left.  Instead of sitting next to her friends, she skips the seat with all the junk food and sits right next to me.  I was not happy.  I obsessively think about leg room for movies and airplanes. Now I had a woman sitting right next to me for two hours.

Then it got worse.  About 10 minutes into the movie, the main characters adopt a lab puppy (that should not be too much of a spoiler for anyone planning on watching the movie).  The first night he has the dog, Owen Wilson keeps the puppy in a box.   This prompted the woman next to me to say in a baby-talk voice, “Ooooh!  Puppy doesn’t want to sleep in a box.”  When the dog started chewing on the sofa, she said, “Puppy! You’re not supposed to chew on the furniture.” This didn’t stop for quite some time.  

In other words, this woman had a monologue with a dog on a movie screen for over 30 minutes.  In another weird and inexplicable development, she stopped talking to the dog character when it got to be an adult.

She could have just gone to the dog beach, talked to all the dogs she wants, and saved herself $20 for the ticket and concessions.

Panthers need a new font and a new quaterback

We’ve watched a ton of football this weekend.   Actually, Mike’s watched a lot of football, and I’ve slept through a lot of football, but I was awake long enough to notice that the Carolina Panthers seriously need a new team font.

Mike told me that they were an expansion team that joined the league in the early nineties and haven’t changed it since their inception.  The coaches windbreakers look especially outdated.


My good friend Melissa and I decided to go Obama’s inauguration.  She’s driving from Chicago and picking me up along the way in Pittsburgh (that was the cheapest place I could fly into).  She’s an artist and designer with some strong opinions about fonts, so I’m looking forward to hearing what she’d recommend for a Carolina type face lift.  We’ll have plenty of time to discuss in the car on the way to D.C., especially if we get snowed in somewhere along the way.

I think the Chargers are going to get pummeled tomorrow without LT and Shawne Merriman, but after last week, you never know.  That Sproles is a feisty little guy.