Baxter Bark Twice

Do as I say, never as I do

Posts Tagged ‘Allie-No’

There are no small victories: BBT by the numbers

Posted by AllieB on April 10, 2014

Minus 10 points for missing last week – I don’t even have a good excuse and it will probably happen again, but I’m here today which I’d say is a victory – and not a small one because there are no small victories. Lots of exciting stuff going on: instead of using a standard bullet format to organize my thoughts, I am breaking them down by the numbers. And if that’s not enticing enough, there’s a really cool surprise when you get to the end…

24: 24 hours til I’m poolside in the Panhandle.

3: Three different sales people Pretty Woman’ed me at Bergdorf’s on Monday. I ordered something from Neiman Marcus online, and I didn’t like it. I also didn’t like the idea of waiting 14 days for my refund (there’s no Neiman’s in NYC), so I gave Customer Service a call and learned I could return my item to Bergdorf’s. Awesome! B-dorf’s is 10 blocks from my office. Things got a lot less awesome upon arrival – I totally get now how lousy Julia Roberts-as-prostitute felt when she went to that store and those bitchy ladies wouldn’t help her.

Sidebar Rant: I think there’s a required seminar all these employees attend where they learn how to make you feel like crap. First and foremost: the signature Eye Rake – this move actually has the same effect as that machine in Honey, I Shrunk the Kids except it shrinks your soul.  Anyone who is not toting an ostrich Prada bag or hasn’t had at least four plastic surgery procedures is subject to the Eye Rake wherein the sales associate rakes their eyes up and down your person, pausing to raise a single brow at especially offensive attire or accessories, such as a pair of Tom’s. Once they’ve robbed you of all self-worth, the employee will purse their lips in a smirky duckface and then, with a hugely exaggerated roll of their eyes, might they deign to answer whatever question you dared ask.

Perhaps one day I’ll go back in carrying not one but three Prada ostrich bags having spruced myself up with a face, brow, eye, boob, AND butt lift, then glide around with my nose in the air waving wads of cash saying, “Big mistake, huge.” Yeah….yeah.

I digress. Someone finally told me where to return the stupid dress, and I got my dollaz back in 48 hours. Mission: accomplished.

2: I’ve made two tomato pies in the last two weeks. Have you heard of the tomato pie diet? It’s all the rage – little known fact: mayonnaise and flaky pie crust are actually power foods.

tomato pie

4: I recently bought a pack of classes to Barry’s Bootcamp aka Torture Chamber Where You Pay $$$$ To Be Yelled At Then Almost Vomit. I’ve gone to four of them. Four is also the number of days since I’ve been able to stand up or sit down without crying a little.

0: I have successfully walked into the Men’s room zero times this week! Two weeks ago I moved up several floors to a new office, and the layout is literally identical to where I was with one exception: the men’s room is where the women’s room was, and vice versa. While I feel really good about my literacy and ability to identify the universal signs for MALE and FEMALE, I still find myself walking towards the wrong door…

5: …and last week I actually did walk thru the wrong door. Five times :(

2011: back in August 2011 the PGA Championship was at the Atlanta Athletic Club. I went to an early round and discovered the physical specimen that is Adam Scott. I spent much of the day stalking tracking his progress and I know I wasn’t the only one who felt our “connection” – it was palpable. Adam definitely needs another green jacket. What a smokeshow.

BBT and Adam Scott

See something you like, Adam? I think he might be jealous of my traps #hoss #mustbetheangle

19: Valeria, the human Barbie, has a 19 inch waist and maintains her inhuman proportions by way of plastic surgery and subsisting on an “air and light” diet. She’s freaking me the EFF OUT. Read more about how cool and normal she is in this GQ article. (Credit: Hilary.)

human barbie valeria

That’s a real person.

39: 39 Things That Only Girls Growing Up in the 80’s Would Get. This gave me almost physical pangs of nostalgia…Caboodles! Lip Smackers! Side pony’s! I actually still like a side pony…(credit: A)

23: So this what they mean by “heaven on earth” – the Annual Lobster Rumble on June 5 in NYC showcases 23 lobster rolls from 23 restaurants across the US, and I, the event attendee, am tasked to taste them all and choose a winner. Holy sh*t. There goes my “one lobster roll per year” rule. That was a really dumb rule anyway.

I was lying about the cool surprise – thought I’d lose you when I started talking about my “standard bullet format.” Thanks for reading!

I’m PCB-bound for a calm and relaxing wedding weekend with only a couple friends – we’ll go to bed early and there will be no dancing, especially not to Mustang Sally.

Spring is here!!!! TGIT!

Bryant Park 1And one day, not too far from now, those trees might even grow some leaves…

 Take a minute and count your blessings today. I say that in all sincerity.

 

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What Not To Do – Just In General, Vol XVII

Posted by AllieB on February 20, 2014

Hi! It’s still winter.

Few things are ever as they seem – especially thru the veil of social media. This is good to remember on, say, Valentine’s Day when Susie McSucksALot posts 10000 pictures of the sweet things her “main man” (CAN WE NOT) did for her. What Sus is not telling us is that last week her “Prince Charming” went to happy hour with his bros and somehow wound up in Vegas where he gambled away their life savings and was found in a compromising position with a burlesque showperson of an undetermined gender. Perhaps SusieQ needs to quit posting things on social media and focus on her relationship with this “dreamboat” – ya heard?

Besides, anyone can put things online and act like they’re real.

BBT and TomB

Some things, however, are exactly as they seem and allow for no alternative interpretations. Case in point: subway etiquette. There are no grey areas when it comes to protocol on the subterranean railway, and adherence to these rules is a very important part of living here. The rules are as follows: 1. avoid unnecessary contact, 2. don’t eat foods that require a utensil, and 3. silence is golden. I hope y’all know I would never eat a cup of yogurt on the subway or play the Les Mis soundtrack on full blast, but the first…well, I think you can guess where I’m going with this.

Re my daily commute: I take the 1 or the 2/3 trains home – they run on parallel tracks, the 1 is local, the 2/3 are express. If I am in the midst of a good book and feel like sitting, I take the local;  if I want full body contact with 5 strangers at a time and wish to get home in 8 minutes, I take the express.

Last night, I opted for the former. I stepped in the empty-ish car and honed in on the most prized seat: the one at the end of the row with empty seats beside it. There was a man sitting a few feet down, but he seemed fine where he was – headphones in, bobbing along to the song – I don’t think he even realized the train had stopped. I claimed the spot with a pointed look and made my way to what was now, as far as I was concerned, my seat.

As one does when sitting, I turned around and I sat. I’ll admit, it was more of a “plop” than a “perch,” so when I came down not on the orange plastic seat, but in the lap of the man who, seconds previous, had been sitting several seats away, there was no denying contact: I, Allie, was on top of him, Male Stranger on Subway. Evidently, said “Male Stranger” was actually a Seat Ninja.

subway fail

I’ve never been known for my cat-like reflexes (true story: I used to intentionally move my leg when the doctor tapped my knee because it never seemed to do anything on its own…forget “cat-like” I’ll settle for just “reflexes”), but I bolted up so quickly I was able to get off the subway right as the doors closed and it pulled away, taking with it the stranger in whose lap I’d just sat. I didn’t even get a chance to hear or see how the guy reacted, which I think is an undeniable indication that miracles are real and they happen every day.

This whole spectacle lasted no more than four seconds, but I can’t stop replaying it in slo-mo in my head. You know how when you remember horrible, embarrassing things you’ve done and you involuntarily blush and cringe reliving them? That’s happened like 10 times since last night.

To the Male Stranger on Subway: I am sorry I sat in your lap. Should I put this on the Craigslist “Missed Connections” page?

I know. Between that and the standing stranger embrace last week, it almost seems as though I’m intentionally doing this… I’m not, but I could see how you might think so. What’s next – an inadvertent elevator kiss?? Jesus. Stay tuned.

In other news….

- J Simps looks great! You go, gurl.

- If you are sick of reading thought-provoking literature like I am, indulge in this: Three Wishes by Liane Moriarty. Three sisters – triplets, actually – deal with life at age 33 in Sydney. It’s a step up from totally trashy chick lit, and it’s a nice break from War and Peace.

- This:

bob costas fnl

Ok, the end. If you’ve learned anything today, I hope it’s that I’m really good at photoshop and drawing.

*Volumes I – XVI of “what not to do” can be found in any number of previous posts. In fact, I was thinking I might rename BBT “What Not To Do, Just In General.”

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2013 -> No Más

Posted by AllieB on December 19, 2013

2013 was the year of – what: it was the year of twerking, Snapchat, Kanye, Netflix, and my 30th birthday. It was a lousy year for the cruise industry (CARNIVAL), but SNL has been pretty funny. As I do every year, I marvel at how quickly it’s gone by…luckily, the month of January feels like it’s 3 full years, all on its own, so I figure that’ll help balance things out. Here now, a woefully incomplete list of random things in 2013, superlative-ized.

- Most likely to boggle ze mind: Wall Street Journal does 2013 in photos. These are incredible – you gotta take a look.

super moon NYC

The super moon on June 23, 2013 as seen in Manhattan #badass

Most universally annoying thing that I secretly do not find annoying: selfies.

- Best example of why it’s great to be a Georgia Bulldog and not a SC Gamecock: Someone Caught Steve Spurrier Humping a Yoga Ball

- BBT’s most read post: ALRIGHT. So when I get mad, BBT gets good? (JSimps, the Post Office, the hot girl at Equinox…no one’s safe)

- BBT’s most gratuitous use of p0rn (spoiler: it’s food p0rn): Hide Your Crazy and Start Acting Like A Lady - I also like the post in general: personal truths, my new ‘hood, some tunes, and, of course, lobsta rolls…(I had to use a 0 instead of an o, my internet filter does not like that word.)

- Best place in the entire world to be around Christmas: NYC

grand central

- Most likely to wear short skirts and move to Boston and become a lawyer: my senior superlative in high school. The newspaper staff made them up, and I was on the newspaper staff so I got off easy – come to think of it, I might have even made it up myself… Nerd.

- Most likely to make you shake your first and ask, WHY GOD WHY: you can’t pick your family, and you can’t pick where you’re from: Grantland’s Rembert Brown does poetic justice to the injustice that was afflicted upon Atlanta sports fans this fall.

- Best dog of the year/century/millennium: Missy Baxter. We miss you, Missy :(

she got the paper every morning for most of her life, starting when she was a teeny tiny puppy and the paper was bigger than she was

she got the paper every morning for most of her life, starting when she was a teeny tiny puppy and the paper was bigger than she was

- …but this dog is a close second. This story made my entire year.

- Hardest restaurant to get a reservation: it’s not even in NYC – Canoe in ATL wins this. I called like 7 weeks ago and they were already booked up for Christmas Eve. WTF Canoe? Whatevs, ever since they started curtailing their bread basket by having waiters distribute SINGULAR pieces, as opposed to the legit carb orgy they used to do, I’m kind of over it anyway. UPDATE: Canoe literally just called – there was a cancellation, and we’re in. I take back what I said about the bread and being over it – y’all knew that was a bunch of BS. I guess Canoe is no longer worthy of this superlative, I’ll go with Charlie Bird (Mary, what’s your secret!?) or ABC Kitchen.

- Sneakiest giraffe/most typical tourists:

stupid tourists! serves them right.

As taken by me, with my iPhone, in Pilanesberg, ZA

- Most likely to suffer from injuries due to an omnipresent Melvin: Miley Cyrus.

- Most legitimately useful information that I will likely never use: these 99 life hacks. The mind REELS.

- Most inopportune moment to drop a curtsy: at my work  Christmas party, I walked out of the restroom at the same time as the President of our company did (he out of the men’s room, me out of women’s – duh), which is an inherently awkward meet and greet all on its own. Never one to miss out on a potentially humiliating encounter, I CURTSIED before him – just as one might the Queen – and raised my glass of champagne as I bade him a pleasant evening. Why would you do that, Allie? I don’t know.

- Most exclusive, seen-and-be-seen event of the year:

Doc4

- Least tan person in the world, on average, over the last 12 months: Me. Or maybe Fleming.

- Most likely to touch a frozen pole with her tongue and get stuck: Miley Cyrus.

- Best gift for the person who has everything – guarantee you they don’t have this: The Kanye West Pug Calendar: 2014% Awesome

kanye february

It’s been a good year! I blogged almost weekly (almost), I got my hair balayage-ed/ombré-ed (I think I like it?), and I rode the Staten Island Ferry.  I also knocked out my sixth continent and got Amazon Prime – 2013 was wild! Who knows what 2014 will bring for BBT…perhaps there will be some external ventures…maybe in the form of a novel? I KNOW, I’ll stop talking and start doing. HAPPIEST of Holidays to you and yours!!

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Hide your crazy and start acting like a lady

Posted by AllieB on August 22, 2013

Oh hello.

Recently, thanks to the wisdom and maturity that comes with turning 30, I have been able to face some harsh realities about my person:

1. I can be lazy

2. I have a penchant for over-indulging

3. Time to put my money where my mouth is and start writing that damn book

4. I overthink everything – I am my own worst enemy

5. I need to give myself more credit

None of this is brand new information, obviously, and self-awareness is an important trait, but it’s pretty worthless unless I start modifying my behavior. So…that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to be a go-getting, self-disciplined, published author who doesn’t dwell on the mundane and gives herself a pat on the back every day.

Too deep? I feel uncomf. Let’s head back to the shallow end and talk lobster rolls.

It’s not a total non sequitur: lobster rolls are something in which I  might very easily over-indulge if I didn’t enforce some self-discipline (see #2). I would eat one, like, every day if they weren’t $28/ea and didn’t have 8,000 calories. For this reason, and I have a similar rule for fettucini alfredo, I only get to have it once/year and it has to be worth it. IE, from the best restaurant and I don’t mess around with portions. This way I’m neither deprived, nor am I disgusting – you know what I say about moderation and how key it is. I don’t respond well to words like “no” and “don’t” and “can’t” and this system allows for indulgence but in a – what’s that? – yes, moderated way. Playing mind games with myself is exhausting, in case you were wondering. And this brings us to #4, doesn’t it…

lobsta roll

that’s some straight food porn right there

Enough with psycho-babble BS, BBT. Dinner at Pearl Oyster Bar, home to the best lobster roll in NYC, was so fun. Three cool girls, some rose, a heaping serving of lobster and mayo on buttered bread with shoestring fries and some fried oysters on the side… Laureo & EDon, we’ll do it again soon, but we’ll have to go somewhere else because my lobster roll quota for 2013 has now been fulfilled.

I am moving over Labor Day. The moving part blows, obviously, but the end result is very exciting. I’m headed downtown, y’all, and it’s going to be great. I’m on the river, I’ll have a balcony overlooking the river, there is an ice machine and a washer/dryer IN UNIT. Plus my rent is going down by like $300 – I feel as though I’ve struck real estate gold. I was running along the Hudson River Running Path the other evening, and I took this pic at the intersection of my new street + Westside Highway (my building is half a block behind me).

what a serene vista

what up JERSEY!

Speaking of running…I use Songza, an app whose virtues I’ve extolled on many occasions, for tunes. I first choose the day and time: it was Monday evening, then the activity: working out, then I choose the genre: the selection varies – I usually go with Aggressive Rap but I chose Upbeat Country. I forgot how enjoyable country is…anyway, Miranda Lambert’s Mama’s  Broken Heart came on, and one line really stuck with me…reference: today’s title. Ladies, hide your crazy.

BOOM – I never do what I say I’m going to do, and this week I did: dos posts en una semana.

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The one where a stranger took a picture of me sleeping

Posted by AllieB on April 18, 2013

Hello, let’s jump right in. Today I share with you the pluses and minuses of public transportation. Please don’t stop before you begin, I promise it’ll be worth your while…

MINUS – like, minus to infinity: I had a work thing in the DC/Maryland area this week, and I like trains so I decided to take the Acela instead of flying. The Acela is my new favorite method of transport: it is a fast train that stops in only a few cities, and it has comfy seats and lots of leg room and there’s none of the security hoopla of airports. I went down Monday night and returned Wednesday morning on the 7AM train. My 5AM wake up call was entirely unwelcome: I already felt like I’d lived a week of two Mondays, two Tuesdays, and I was waking up to my second Wednesday – I was exhausted. The train ride from DC to NYC is 2 hours and 45 minutes, and I slept HARD, like hardcore R.E.M. sleep from Baltimore to Philadelphia, which is about 1.5 hours. I woke up as we got close to Philly very disoriented and confused…and then…THIS:

“Um, excuse me?” The guy next to me cleared his throat.

I turned to him and he continued, “So, I have something to show you, and before you think I’m really creepy – I swear I’m not – it’s just…well, here,” as he pulls out his phone, “I took a picture of you sleeping.”

“You – wait … WHAT?!?!?” It took me about 3 seconds to process this (if you count out 3 seconds Mississippi-ly that’s a long time to process a thought), and once it hit me I was not happy.

“Yeah – stop, don’t look at me like that – you sleep really…I guess I’ve never seen anyone sleep like that before. You were, just, getting after it. I wanted to tell my friends about it but I didn’t think they’d believe me, so I took a picture…then I felt bad about sending it, so I decided I’d show you before I sent it to anyone and let you decide if I could share it.”

He handed me his phone. Suffice it to say…it wasn’t good. My head was lolled back on my shoulders, mouth gaping open, eyes pretty much wide open and staring right at him (I sleep with  my eyes open – have we talked about that?) and hair a veritable rat’s nest around my dome. “Plus,” he said, ever so helpfully, “your head kept doing that thing where it falls forward and then snaps back…aw man, I should have taken a video!”

Sweet. “Yeah, you’re gonna have to delete that,” I told him, “delete that right now.” My level of kiddingness was neg.

“OK…I get that. Here, done, DELETE.” He was sad to see it go, but he probably already sent it to his buddies anyway and the part about letting me decide was a bunch o baloney – I wasn’t born yesterday.

Then he added, “But I guess I also took it because I thought you should know how you sleep…”

I assured him that he was definitely not the first person to take a picture of me sleeping, but was absolutely the first stranger who had, and he goes, “Ha, that you know of….”

At this point all I could do was laugh. He didn’t seem like a weird creep (and I don’t give people much benefit of the doubt when I’m assessing weird creepiness), he was definitely somewhat PLU, around my age, not heinous…hey, if you can’t laugh at yourself… Then we pulled up to Philly and he got off. The end.

(Author’s note: I went back and forth about whether or not I was going to include a pic of me sleeping – obviously not the one he took, but I wasn’t lying when I said that others had snapped pics of me in medias slumber. I decided that, given all the weird crap going on right now we could all use some cheering up..so…here. Bus – me – under it.)

It is intentionally a very small file. No need to supersize this assault on the eyes

It is intentionally a very small file. No need to supersize this assault on the eyes

Here’s my takeaway: are there any classes that teach people how to sleep normal? I bet there are – there’s a class for just about everything in NYC. I do usually sleep with an eye mask, which helps with the eyes-open issue…but, as we all now know, that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

gratutitous NYC pic featuring the West Village, my 'hood

gratuitous NYC pic featuring the West Village, my ‘hood

PLUS!: AM New York, a free newspaper up here, distributes their paper via paper people who stand at subway entrances, passing them out as people walk by. You’ll find a wide array of paper people: some are surly and just hold them out, silently; some are shouting about deals/coupons in that day’s edition; and others are less focused on giving away papers, but engaging with passer-bys. Normally, no gracias – leave me alone – but there is a woman who stands on the landing at the Bryant Park/42nd Street station at the corner of 42nd and 5th, where I emerge from subway to city every morning, and she is maybe my favorite human in NY.

“Alright, girl – it’s another beautiful day out there! Let me see you smile, oh yeah, there it is! Look at that smile! You go, girl, you’re gonna be great today, just keep smilin’…”

Each morning as I climb up the stairs, regardless of my disposition or mood, I cannot help but break into a huge, goofy smile, and I feel so silly about it I start laughing to myself. So, basically, because of this woman, I start each day laughing outloud. I believe that my overall quality of life has been improved since I began seeing her every day.

Cheesiness factor: high. I care not, you’d all be so lucky to have this gem of a person in your life.

On a serious note, I’d like to thank you all for your concerned texts/calls/emails/gchats about my sister, Charlotte, who ran the Boston Marathon on Monday. She was very close to the explosions, but she had her phone with her (many hadn’t had a chance to retrieve between finishing/running race and the blasts) so she was able to let us know right away that she was fine and safe and kept us posted as to her location, etc. It’s such a horrible tragedy on so many levels, but I really do appreciate the social media focus on the inherent good in people that shows itself in situations such as this. I also really appreciate these five golden retrievers – “comfort dogs” - who are part of the K-9 Lutheran Parish in Boston and trained specifically to provide emotional support.

This is Luther. Luther is hard at work and not enjoying a minute of it

This is Luther. Luther is hard at work and hating every second of it

BBT sends thoughts and prayers to all those impacted by Boston, the Texas explosion, or any of the other unpleasantness going on right now. XOXO….and TGIT

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