Thursday, May 6th, 2010
Pitting out is something I never have to worry about. I mean, the rest of my body will sweat if it’s hot (swamp ass and pregnancy seem to go together hand-in-hand), but I chalk up my dry-as-a-desert armpits to using Certain Dri deodorant back my senior year of high school.
I was on the Mercyhurst Crew team, which was basically just an excuse to go on loosely chaperoned co-ed overnight trips every weekend. Of course, my two good friends Julie and Ingrid were on the team and we’d always room together. Instead of carb-loading and getting a good night sleep before the crew regattas, we’d always stay up until all hours of the night painting our nails, trying out new beauty products, and jumping out the windows of first floor motel rooms to go visit boys.
On one such trip, I remember Julie brought a new “magic” deodorant for us to test out — Certain Dri. We were concerned about our armpit sweat making us look unattractive so the three of us decided to use this new “clinicial strength” pit tonic to see if it would solve our problems. Minutes after application our underarms burned as though we had rubbed acid all over them (which in fact, is probably the main ingredient of Certain Dri). But after a night of writhing in pain on our beds from armpits afire, VOILA! The next day we were all as sweat-free as Eskimos.
Oddly, I used Certain Dri a few more times in college and I honestly think I permanently sealed the pores of my armpits shut from sweat. Of course if it’s 100 degrees and I’m running five miles, I’ll notice I’m a little sweaty, but nothing close to what it should be. Natural? Probably not. Healthy? Um, doubtful. Convenient: very.
Julie and I back in the 90s at a crew regatta. My hair was still brown, but my pits were sealed!
Saturday, March 13th, 2010
Stacey and I were super psyched to book our third TV appearance for Naked Thanks. The only thing is that we had to be in Richmond, VA at sunrise and had to leave Washington by 5 am. This would have been all well and good if it hadn’t been pouring and the road we had to take had not doubled as a truck depot. Luckily, there was Stacey. When I lost my marbles because I was pretty sure the semis were going to make a pancake out of my Honda hybrid, Stacey calmed me down, assured me we were going to live, and took over the driving until it was light enough outside for me to not lose my marbles.
I-95 was nothing for the Danica Patrick of Erie. Stacey meandered around trucks flying past us at insane speeds like she was taking a relaxing drive down a country road. Needles to say, that Erie weather sure made her tougher than my wimpy Washington DC-raised self.
To top off Stacey’s masterful driving performance, she managed to save us again, even when not at the wheel. She timed our much needed “I’m about to pee down my leg” perfectly. When we got back on the highway, an 18-wheeler had flown off the highway smashing the median. Could we have been next to that truck if Stacey hadn’t decided that our time to run to the Burger King bathroom was there and then? Who knows. All I know is that Stacey should probably sign up for the Indy 500 and she may have psychic powers. Thanks Stace!!
If Stacey and Danica went pedal to the metal against each other, my money would definitely be on Stacey.
Monday, February 22nd, 2010
To continue the trip down memory lane while in Erie, I decided to snap a few pictures of this town I love. In trying to photograph pretty snow-covered things, I took one of the “White Building.” This is what my friend Julie and I called it when the complex fell under our newspaper-delivering jurisdiction in 1991. We were in 7th grade and had our first real job: Co-Papergirls Extraordonaire. This was before middle-aged men named Ed took over all the paper routes and your morning edition was delivered by someone who hadn’t hit puberty, let alone gotten his driver’s license.
Our route consisted of Erie’s tallest apartment building and an old folks home called, “The Regency.” We delivered 120 papers on weekdays and 200 on the weekends. All four of our parents would take turns driving us around on Saturday and Sunday since it was dark and there was no possible way we could carry 200 heavy papers by ourselves.
Paper delivery was a pretty sweet deal considering all we had to do was walk around a couple apartment buildings dropping papers on doorsteps. Other kids were out plowing their way through snow and ice on their bicycles while we were given the master key to a luxury apartment building. Sometimes after we finished we’d go take a nap in the lobby or hit up the common room of the Regency for candy bars. The old people loved us. At Christmas we’d rake up almost 1000 bucks in tips! When you’re just spending it on Bonne Bell lipsmackers and Cover Girl mascara, that kind of cash goes a looooong way.
All was good until we began to think paper carrying was bad for our image. I remember hissing to Julie at a school dance, “If Ara Pardini ever finds out we are paper carriers, I will DIE! I WILL JUST LAY DOWN AND DIE!!!!!!!” So, to avoid the embarrassment of revealing our identities, we began wearing masks while working. I was disguised as a bum and Julie was a vampire. In hindsight, this probably wasn’t the best idea considering we delivered to people that were 85 years old. Jumping out from behind the door looking like a homeless person and screeching, “HEY MR. MCFADDEN!!! WHAT’S COOKIN’?” was likely the cause of a few near misses with some of the more frail residents. But, ultimately, our identities were kept secret, and we were finally able to bequeath the route to Julie’s little brother and move on to bigger and better things…at Dairy Queen.
Ah, the "White Building."
And the masks. Imagine one of these popping out of the 5AM darkness and you'll know how our customers at "The Regency" felt.
Saturday, February 20th, 2010
On Wednesday, Ollie and I drove up to Erie to escape the snow in Virginia (um, something I never thought I’d be saying…). Grey and I figured it’d be easier for him to just get the house ready to put on the market while I occupy Ollie at my parents. It’s just so hard to keep the place clean and ready to show when Ollie does things like smear bacon grease on the walls.
Because he slept for the first couple hours of the drive, I was able to have all sorts of deep thoughts. I pondered the existence of aliens. Mulled over world peace. Wondered about the staying power of skinny jeans. Then I got to thinking about how there’s not much constant in this ever changing world of ours. For Pete sake, I can’t even keep up with the new Facebook layout!
However, as soon as I turned onto I-79 and and my car antenna picked up Erie radio stations, I heard Bob Seger’s familiar voice singing. Immediately, I felt like at least one thing is reliable: Erie radio. Specifically Rocket 101. No matter what, there are about 50 tunes that will be played again and again. I think of these as “Erie songs.” Even when I am driving in DC and hear them, they’re still “Erie songs” to me. Ditties like “Radar Love,” “Tuesday’s Gone,” “Hotel California” — I don’t know. It’s like every song from the movie Dazed and Confused but with a few 80s hair bands thrown in for good measure.
It’s not that I particularly like all the music Rocket 101 plays, but something about driving around my hometown while “Pour Some Sugar on Me” plays on the radio — well, it just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy.
Did you know Bon Jovi's mom was from Erie, PA? Must have something to do with the local love for hair bands.
Monday, February 8th, 2010
In all honesty, when I was watching the round-the-clock Blizzard of 2010 coverage on Friday night and I saw Bob Garbacz’s title of “Ice and Snow Commander” I laughed out loud. We had our friends Kevin and Michelle over for drinks and when we saw this segment on Fox 5 we all rolled on the floor for a good 30 minutes giggling. I’m sure the five bottles of wine we drank contributed to our hysteria, but like me, Kevin and Michelle are from the mid-west and used to massive amounts of accumulation.
Everything was fun until Michelle cut her hand on our ceiling while lunging at the skies yelling, “Back off snow! I COMMAND you!” Then, in my cold weather commanding frenzy I threw beer at Grey who in turn retaliated by dousing our clean-no-longer basement in Sierra Nevada. We hadn’t even been stuck in the house for five hours and already we were stricken with cabin fever!
When we all calmed down we began discussing the implications of this Mr. Garbacz’s title. What’s next? A global “Just Say No to Frozen Vapor” campaign? Obama’s appointment of an Ice & Snow Czar? That remains to be seen. In the meantime, I think we all can rest a little easier knowing there are men like Bob are on our side in the War Against Precipitation.
Bob tells snow and ice: "BACK OFF, BITCHES!"