Sunday, August 1st, 2010
Luckily, longevity has always been something with which my family has been blessed. In fact, today we’re celebrating my Nana’s 90th birthday and earlier this year my Popop turned ninety-four. Thankfully, on both my mom and dad’s sides of the family my relatives have been given the gift of good health. Come to think of it, even my dogs growing up (good old “Poo” and “Dinky”) lived until the ripe old ages of 22 and 21, respectively. Pretty impressive considering the average lifespan for toy poodles is only about 9-14 years. I mean, that’s like 150 years in dog years! I’ll admit that they were incontinent, blind, and deaf by the end, but hey — they were alive!!!
That’s pretty much what I want to happen to me (except for the incontinent, blind, and deaf part). Of course, I’d prefer to be playing tennis at 115 years of age to sitting in a poopy diaper watching Oprah reruns, but I think there’s something to be said for long-term living no matter what your state. Easy for me to say being 31 and healthy, I know, but after reading The Blue Zones a few years back (all about centenarian longevity secrets) I made it my goal to live healthily to one hundred.
Not only do I want to be around to see my grandchildren and great-grandchildren grow up (something about this desire makes me think I’m kind of a control freak), but I also think the next 70 years will be pretty darn interesting. I mean, can’t even imagine what they’ll be able to do with lasers and Botox by the time I’m 75, let alone 100! I picture myself living wrinkle-free on a beach somewhere on another planet with my flying car and time travel machine and it makes me excited!
Here's a pic I snapped of my grandparents picking cherries. Who would know they're both almost a century old (although the blublockers do give you a hint...)
Wednesday, April 7th, 2010
After realizing we had nothing in our fridge today but mustard, one beer, expired kefir, and some brie leftover from Easter, I decided it was high time to get some groceries. Everyone’s heard the joke that Whole Foods is actually Whole Paycheck. Well, I don’t quite spend my entire check there, but Grey and I really do have a weakness for the organic goodness that WF peddles.
Maybe if we had a Wegman’s around it’d be a different story, but WF is my favorite grocery store hands down. I’m a sucker for their cheese display and the prepared foods section literally makes me weak in the knees. Even Grey, who hates grocery shopping with a passion doesn’t mind hitting up WF because he’s always so impressed with their beers.
However, even writing this post about a grocery store seems too similar to my grandparents for my liking. I feel like I sound like my 94-year-old Popop when he exclaims, “Nana and I bought these frozen pizzas at ALDI! Three for 99 cents! Beat that!” Mind you, the pizzas he bought are genetically engineered, expired, and tainted with arsenic, but he gets so excited about the deals ALDI offers.
I’m pretty sure poor Popop would crap his pants if he saw the prices at Whole Foods. I can just hear him, “Crooks! $5.99 for a block of cheese! This place must be mafia run.”
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.