Happy New Year

I guess I've been kind of a lurker here. In fact I realized that I had actually stopped checking livejournal altogether. And there is a reason for that.

You Can Fly

I started a new blog. Right after Thanksgiving, I had a really shitty weekend. Well, I had a weekend. And lots of shitty things happened in it. And some good things happened. But I didn't even remember those things, I just kept bitching about all the shit. Which is when I realized that I need to be more positive. So I made a new journal. It's a combination of the everyday recap kind of blog, a focus on positive things blog, and just plain talkin' about and linkin' to cool shit that makes me happy.

I'll still be here, keep up with the friends who still post here. But I think I've grown past this crazy experiment called my livejournal and I needed to start fresh to match my fresh attitude.

Happy New Year to everyone. I wish the best to you all. Check out my new blog.

~The Rock Star is rockin' out.

Last-Minute Gift Ideas

Hi. Yes, I know. I haven't been around lately. Everything's fine and actually pretty great and I will fill you all in when the holiday whirlwind comes to a full and complete stop. For now, I need help with a coupla gifts.

Travel Coffee Mug
Should be dishwasher safe. Should NOT be Christmas/Winter themed, which is all I can seem to find. Should be not too expensive (I've seen some at $30 and $40, yikes!). Could be themed to the Yankees or Steelers. Could be for just general use. Must be available for purchase somewhere I can access from work or home (i.e. not the internet, it's too late for shipping). I know Starbucks is having a sale, but all there stuff is no good. Ditto the mugs where I work. Help a sista out.

Delicious Bath Products
Could be lotion or bath salts or shower gel or whatever. Should NOT be something anyone can get anywhere (i.e. Bath and Body Works). Should NOT be expensive (it would be inappropriate to spend a lot on this person). Should smell so good you want to eat it. Again, should be available somewhere I can physically go to and purchase, rather than order online.

I work in Chelsea and I have all the north Jersey malls (sigh) available to me. Hop to it, Elves. Where does one find quality, desirable versions of the crap people usually get for Secret Santa, when people one knows actually WANT that stuff?

~The Rock Star is almost done shopping

ETA: Since I was in the mall anyway, I buckled and went into Sephora for Gift B. Because while Sephora is everywhere, at least a gift from there is pretty posh. Still could use help on Gift A tho, before I just buckle and buy the least ugly one they have at my night job :)

Light Bulb Tester

All right kiddies, here's a mission for ya. When I was a kid and we put up the Christmas lights, we used to have a bulb tester. It was a was a little plastic thing that you put a 9-volt battery in and it had electrical contacts. So you could put a bulb in and see if it worked and find the one that wasn't working, replace it, and the whole string of lights would work again.

I tried to decorate last night. But 2 150 bulb strands wouldn't light at all and 1 100 bulb strand only lit half way. I have other lights that work, because I am insane and love Christmas, but those are for the tree. So does anyone know where I can get one of these testers? Because I hate the idea of throwing out so many lights, just because of one bulb that I can't find. I've seen them a couple of places online, but I don't really want to go through all that and wait for shipping etc. I want to go buy one somewhere. Or should I just join the rest of the American public in their mentality of "throw it out and buy a new one! they're cheap!"

You would think this has something to do with also not wanting to throw out something I spent good money on, but no. Someone gave me these lights. They worked last year, dammit!

~The Rock Star needs to light up her life.

Jingle Jangle

It ain't like the old days, that's for sure. I used to post numerous times a day of boredom. Now you're lucky if you hear from me once a week. But I think it's better this way.

Probably one of the reasons is that I am boring these days. People keep asking "what's up? What's new with you" and the answer is, not much. I haven't done anything fun or exciting or noteworthy lately. I work, I come home. Sometimes I cook an elaborate meal. I try to relax and hang out on the weekends. Most nights Kris and I just crash and watch TV. It's fairly run of the mill.

"But, what about your new job?!" Well, people, listen. First of all, it's not exactly a NEW job. It's the same job I've been doing from home for years and from that old evil corporate office for years before that. Same job, some of the same people, new place. This particular office is a nice place to be. It's in Chelsea so there's lots of stuff around me. The office is open plan. There are 7 of us. The only straight people are me and the President. Afternoon drinking in the office is totally allowed, sometimes encouraged. Wednesday we had bagels and mimosas for Thanksgiving and then passed around the new Britney Spears album. I work in a gay boozy office and that's one of the best kinds of offices to work in. Also, I am the Angela. They informed me on my second day that I am in charge of planning all parties which is such a major bonus to me. I mean, it's a job. It's work. It was never work that I loved or could get all that excited about so if I don't seem that excited about my new job, that's why. But it doesn't mean that it isn't good, because it is.

And we are barrelling headfirst into one of my favorite times of year. We had a lovely Thanksgiving yesterday at my parents' house with Seester and Kris. The meal was delicious and enjoyed by all. My apple pie was a hit. There was a low-key discussion resulting in an agreeable arrangement of Christmas Eve with the boyfriends' families and Christmas Day at home, with the boyfriends, which is SUCH a relief. Now it's time for Christmas stuff, which starts today with the decorating of the house and the singing of the songs and possibly some baking. The shopping will have to wait until I get paid again or otherwise go on a credit card. (when I blew most of my first paycheck responsibly on my Amex bill, I failed to realize that Christmas is coming and so that's probably just going to be voided.) But I am definitely in the spirit. And to help ensure that it stays that way, if you're out shopping some weekend, check to see if I'm at my store and stop by to say hi. It may keep The Rock Star from having to choke a bitch.

~The Rock Star is merrily rolling into the holiday season.

Messages to the Public

A more run-of-the-mill "this is what I've been up to" entry to follow, but for now a few blasts to the general public.

-If you know anyone who is part of a group, company, or organization that wants to give gift cards to my store in bulk this year, please let me know. Bulk could be 10, could be 100 (I think, I need clarification). My store is running a contest and if I get a bunch of these, I could win a trip. And I like contests.

-Please support the writer's strike. Don't buy TV shows on dvd or download them on the internet. Writers have written content, and yes, they have been paid for it. But the content turns out to be more valuable than their old contract dictates. They are striking to get just compensation for the actual, current worth of their product, given the rise in new media. Furthermore, sign the petition to let the producers know that you support the writers. Even if you're so pissed just because you want new episodes of Heroes or The Office, this is the way to get it back. I'm asking as someone who wants to one day be a successful part of this guild, please support the writers.

-Where do you get your jeans? (rolled eyes and groans for anyone who said 'from my FAMILY, duh') It would seem that is the standard dress code in the office and luckily I caught on to this before I bought too many pairs of slacks. You guys know I'm cheap, but I'm getting better. You know I've already looked in My Favorite Store, and sometimes they have an odd pair or two that I like, but all I can really depend on there for sure is getting Mom Jeans. Where does a girl get some nice, dark wash, straight leg, medium-rise jeans for not too much money? Don't say Old Navy. Their jeans don't fit me for crap.

~The Rock Star's gotta get to work.

Gift of a Lifetime

Finally found out what my man's birthday gift was and it was AMAZING. Seriously. Best. Gift. Ever. He got a bunch of people who love me to chip in so they could all afford to get my hair cut, by the one, the only Nick Arrojo of TLC's What Not to Wear. This is something I've wanted for a long time because he is a person that you can go to and say "Give me the best cut for my head" and you can trust that he will do it. This is exactly what I asked and it is exactly what he did. And the crazy part is that no one else could have done this. If any other person had said to me, your hair should look like this, I would not have believed them and if I had let anyone else do it, it would not have come out the same. It means so much to me to have all of you guys do something so nice that, without all of you, could not have happened. You guys treat me better than I treat myself and I love you for that. This was an amazing gift I will never forget.

For those that want the lowdown on the day, it was fun. When we pulled down the street and I saw his name on the side of the building first I gasped, loudly and long. Then I screamed. Then Kris said "Yes, you're getting your hair cut by Nick Arrojo." Then I screamed some more, started crying, and hyperventilated. I was speechless for a good few minutes. Kris's mom, who was in on the gift and is a big WNTW fan came along. We went into the studio where I felt like a star. They took my jacket and gave me this fancy robe to wear. They offered us drinks like 50 times in the time that we were waiting and the assistants were sweet and talked to us so we wouldn't feel like we were waiting. They put me in a chair and Tatum, Nick's assistant, chatted to me while Nick finished up another cut.

Then he came over, introduced himself and shook my hand and looked right into my eyes. People, the man has INCREDIBLE brown eyes. So bright and sparkly and friendly. He looked over my hair and played with it a little. He asked what I wanted and I told him the above. He asked if I was OK with losing some length. I have seen enough WNTW to know whatever he wants to do is the right thing. Tatum took me up and gave me a shampoo, the last I'd have with longish hair. They sat me back down at a mirror and Tatum arranged Nick's tools for him. He has a little razor container with "NICK" written on it in what looks like White-Out. He came over and introduced himself to Kris and his mom before coming back to get started on me. He cut from front to back so I couldn't see what was going on. His assistants held my excess hair out of the way, like a normal stylist would do with clips, but I guess that's why they pay him the big bucks. A LOT of hair came off. I could tell. He was using a razor to cut most of the length. He was friendly and asked me a little about myself but wasn't too chatty. I complimented the studio and asked about its expansion, that I had read about while we were waiting. He was very reassuring and complimentary. I was grinning like an idiot the whole time and everytime he saw me smiling, he'd smile back. I was just so excited to see what it was finally going to look like. He finished the cut and went off to greet another client while Tatum gave me a blowout (shut up Frank). He put "volume foam" in my hair which I asked if it was like mousse and it is but they don't say mousse anymore apparently. He used a round brush and showed me what he was doing, since I asked if I would ever possibly be able to make it look as good as he was making it look. And when he was done, I had an adorable chin-length bob with bangs. It was very round and I felt very mod and 60s. But it was perfect and wonderful. Nick came back and tousled it this way and that. Put in some shine spray and arranged it just so. Then he pronounced me all done. He gave me a hug and an autographed headshot. Kris took a picture of us. He shook my hand again and said goodbye and just like that it was over.

I keep giggling over it. I can't keep my hands off it. I still do things like I think it's long, but it's not. When I put my coat on outside the studio, I went to flip my hair out from under the collar, but there wasn't any. When I took a shower today, I took too much shampoo. And when I got my hair wet, it just went flat against my head, didn't go down my back at all. I styled it on my own today and though it will never look as great as he made it, it still looks wicked awesome and is so easy! In a store today, I tried on a bunch of headbands and y'all? I am going to have a LOT of fun with that look. Everything about this is fantastic.

I know there are people who are saying "God, it was just a haircut." But it wasn't. It was...it was like a makeover. I actually feel better about myself, because I look so much better. Kris loves it and he told me it showcases my "beautiful face." I feel a little stupid crying over it like all the idiots that get made over on TV, but good God. This is one of those things, that when people ask you what you want, you say something like this as a gag. As though you never believe that you'll ever get anything that great. And my wonderful boyfriend and wonderful friends came together and made that actually come true. You guys gave me something I wanted and never ever thought I really could get. Just knowing you guys love me that much would be enough of a gift. But on top of that, I got to meet a really cool person whose work I really like, I got to put myself into his hands and let him work his magic on me. And I also have this wonderful look that flatters me and makes me feel great about myself. I love you guys. Thank you so much.

Oh and if you haven't seen it yet, the pictures are up on my myspace.

~The Rock Star is glamorous and gorgeous.

You Vote, America

So, my sister's birthday is coming up, and like all family gatherings, it's fraught with stress. You see, next week is unusually full of commitments for me. And I would like to add, all commitments, not made by me, but nonetheless all highly appreciated and/or inescapable. So, without boring you with all the details, here are the options for Family Birthday Dinner as I believe them to stand. Consider all other options of days and times to be non-working options, as they have already been discussed and determined to be such.

a) FBD on Tuesday night, two days prior to the actual BD. the con being, my mother says it will make the actual BD anti-climactic.

b)FBD on Friday night (day after actual BD), and I skip Kris's very important, everyone on the planet needs to be there and most of them are actually coming, second gig ever with his new band. I really want and kind of need to be there, but ultimately family is more important.

c) FBD on Friday night, following Kris's show. NOTE: only if my sister is at all interested in, having dinner in the city, waiting until 8 pm to do so, and attending Kris's show. It would be a nightmare becuase my parents do not do the city well, but if it's what my sister and I want, they will have to deal.

d) That Sunday (3 days after actual BD), sis has "plans earlier in the day" that she doesn't know what time they will end. I hope and pray that my sis's bf has had a mixup of a football game the 3 of us plan to watch together, so that he has actually told her that she will be busy watching that game on Sunday, when in fact said game is actually to be played on a different day. IF (God Willing) that is the case, FBD early on Sunday night and I eventually have to beg out to go to my goddamn store's (annual mandatory completely unmissable and yet totally irrelevant to my position in the store and therefore completely unnecessary for me to be there) holiday store meeting. (If not and she actually has other plans falling under the umbrella of "plans earlier in the day" there will not be enough time between her plans and my meeting to do a proper dinner as my sister deserves)

None are ideal, of course, but the ones that would be ideal have already been deterined as days/times that would not work. And any later and I feel we are ripping my sister off for what is a pretty big birthday.

Ultimately, I will try and hook up with her for happy hour tomorrow and talk it over and whatever she wants most is what we will do because she is my sister and it is her birthday. But you tell me america. If you were as screwed as I am in this situation, what would you do?

Growing Up

Well, I'm old now. LATE twenties. It's enough to freak me out. But I did some RAPID growing this week. Exhibit A?

Take a minute here, this is a biggie.

I got a new job. Well not really. Well kinda.

I am going to work full time for the company I freelance for. I made the deal Monday but wanted to have a chance to tell my family before I blabbed it all over the internet. I will be working in their office in the city. They are very cool and laid back. The job will come with less pressure than I have felt lately. I have a very sweet compensation package that I expertly negotiated my way into, with much help. I am, for lack of better terms, set up.

As for the cafe, I will keep working there, full time until the end of next week and then 2 days a week after that. They need me and I hate to give up such a sweet discount right before the holidays. I start the job on November 12, giving me time to work out my time at the cafe and then give myself a little break.

It's not, per se, what I want to do with my life. But I think it will enable me to do what I want with my life. Most of this year I have been struggling and too busy working to do anything else. Now I can make enough to life with just one job and have the time left to a) follow artistic pursuits and b) eventually find a job that is better suited to me.

But for now I am a very happy Rock Star. As predicted, you will hear fewer "today I'm happy because I realized I'm alive and that's better than being dead" posts, if any at all. Life is starting to turn around at the ripe old age of 28 and I am finally starting to get a damn handle on things. Amen lord, ya know?

~The Rock Star is all growed up and stuff.

Birthday Party

Thank you for asking, my birthday was lovely. I didn't do much. Took the day off and puttered about the house. Went out into the lovely weather and got a manicure and ice cream cone and shopped for shoes. Bought some food, came home and cooked a very fancy impressive dinner for myself, Kris, and Frank, complete with champagne. I received lots of love in the form of flowers, cards, text messages and myspace comments. All in all a nice day. And there is more birthday to come, so delightful all, really.

Speaking of birthday fun to come, I must ask. OK, internet, what do you want? Because I have tried organizing gatherings by the following methods: email, evite, myspace bulletin, livejournal post, and myspace event. And ALL of them seem to be a problem for SOMEONE. I didn't answer your email because I don't know if I can come. Your evite went into my spam folder. I don't really check myspace much anymore, I use facebook all the time.

What? What can I do to tell people when I want to do something with a group of people and disperse the details and have people tell me whether they are going to come? Because it is driving me FUCKING CRAZY. There should be a service like that that EVERYONE uses for stuff like this. Which I thought evite was but, not really, apparently. Argh. Should I handwrite and snail mail paper invites at this point? Because I feel like I should.

Rant aside, yes. Very nice, thank you. Happy birthday to me.

~The Rock Star wants an RSVP

Appreciative Me

Lest anyone think I am all bitching all the time, witness this moment I had earlier in my kitchen, after Kris and I returned from the AT&T store, having signed up and gotten shiny new phones:

"You know, for broke people, we sure do have a lot of nice stuff. We both have Macs, both have iPods and both have shiny new phones with bluetooth headsets."

See? I am aware of the nice stuff and not just the nice NEW stuff either. All in all, things are going OK. I am tired. This is my first day off in 8 days and I still spent it working on freelance stuff all day and doing 3 weeks worth of laundry for two people. But I have a birthday in 6 days and that is nice. And my friends and boyfriend love me and that is nice too. It was hard there for a while with lots of work and Kris being overworked at his store and sick and I just felt generally really crappy. But nice things are happening all over the place and I can foresee a time in the future when things might improve permanently.

I had a job opportunity crop up and despite much effort and stress on my part and hopefully through no fault of my own, it may have slipped through my fingers. But it did make me feel good about myself for one hot second. And though the next couple of weeks are a bit crazy, I can feel myself wanting to take steps to resume the job search. People are helping me and I just have to stay positive and focussed.

~The Rock Star is going to play with her new phone.