Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Open Weekend Thread

There’s a brownstone down the block from our place that’s still decorated for Christmas. There’s a wreath on the door, greens and lights wrapped along the outside banister, and in the evening after the sun goes down, you can very clearly see a huge Christmas tree in the living room, lights-a-blazing. What’s even more curious than this expired display of holiday cheer is that there doesn’t seem to be anything else in the apartment except that tree. I know this because about two weeks ago when Drew and I were returning home from dinner, I felt emboldened thanks to the huge margarita I’d consumed earlier and peered through one of the windows to get a look. All I saw was this huge Christmas tree (lights on) and nothing else. Curious, no?

I mean, on one hand, maybe the people who live there were on vacation and had left during Christmas and still hadn’t returned yet. But then, why were the lights on? And why no furniture in the place? It doesn’t make any sense. Two weeks ago I thought perhaps the residents had just been lazy about taking everything down, but it’s February now and the decorations are still up. What’s more, yesterday evening I walked past the brownstone on my way to pick up some chorizo sausage for this amazing stew I cooked for dinner — good God, it was good!! — and I sort of craned my neck to look inside the apartment again and there was a man standing in the window looking straight at me. He was just standing there in the window, daring someone like me to look inside and question that big Christmas tree on display. Then, this morning on the way to the coffee shop with Jackson, we passed by the apartment, and again (!) the man was standing in the window all creepy like. And the lights on the stairs are still turned on! Weird, right? What does it mean?? I want to get to the bottom of it, but I’m not sure how. Maybe next time I’ll have TWO margaritas and then go ring the buzzer and ask the man what the deal is.

Anyway, that’s all I’ve got today. Jackson’s been sleep regressing this week and last night we were up from about 2 til 5 and today I feel like death. I forgot just how horrible it is to be up in the middle of the night listening to a baby scream, and being reminded of it makes me think that perhaps one child is the perfect amount for us.

And how was your week? You don’t still have Christmas decorations up, do you?

95 comments… add one
  • becboo84

    BecBoo84 February 1, 2013, 4:08 pm

    One of the many reasons my husband is just amazing is that he spearheads getting all of our decorations up the weekend after Thanksgiving and all of them down the week after Christmas!

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    kerrycontrary February 1, 2013, 4:12 pm

    I still have a fake electric pumpkin sitting on my printer. BUT! I actually plan on putting it in my attic tomorrow while cleaning/organizing. I’m about to go nuts if I don’t clean out my closet a little. Oh, and the irony of living in a studio but having an attic does not elude me.

    I really want to get indian for dinner, but I’ve been going to the same indian restaurant for 3 YEARS and they know my name and it’s really pathetic. I feel very sad when I’m picking up food just for myself on Fridays instead of going there with my boyfriend. They also make fun of me because I order the same thing every time–for 3 years. I do eat other indian food at other indian restaurants, but I swear to Ganesh this place has the best chicken tikka masala in the world.

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      lets_be_honest February 1, 2013, 4:45 pm

      Oh good to hear about the pumpkin. I took my tree down last weekend. Oops.

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      lets_be_honest February 1, 2013, 4:46 pm

      Try chicken saagwala!

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        kerrycontrary February 1, 2013, 4:48 pm

        See the problem is, this place uses white meat chicken in the tikka masala and uses dark meat in every other chicken dish. I hate dark meat, I can barely even swallow it. So at other indian restaurants its not a problem, it’s just this one place.

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        lets_be_honest February 1, 2013, 4:50 pm

        Maybe since they know you so well, you can ask for white meat.

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      • LadyinPurpleNotRed

        LadyinPurpleNotRed February 1, 2013, 4:52 pm

        I’m with you on the dark meat.

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      • katie

        katie February 1, 2013, 5:04 pm

        aw dark meat is the best! its full of flavor and so much juicier!!

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      • theattack

        theattack February 1, 2013, 5:06 pm

        So many people say that. I just can’t get over the way it looks, even though I know that makes me about four years old.

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      • katie

        katie February 1, 2013, 5:15 pm

        you have been conditioned by tyson to want breast meat!! lol

        but really, what does it look like? i mean, i just think it looks like chicken.. so is it the color, or the fact that its not a nice shape..?

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      • theattack

        theattack February 1, 2013, 5:16 pm

        Haha, that might be part of it. It’s just the color. Beef and pork gross me out too because they’re not white, but I usually eat both anyway. Except bacon. Bacon doesn’t gross me out. Bacon’s gooood.

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        Addie Pray February 1, 2013, 5:56 pm

        CONFESSION: I don’t like bacon. I mean, I don’t HATE it, but meh. I could never eat bacon again and be a very happy camper.

        Judge away.

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        rachel February 1, 2013, 6:08 pm

        I have a friend who doesn’t like it. She was with a group of us camping once, and I think we went through like 5 pounds of bacon one morning for breakfast, with every single new person who got up asking why she didn’t want any.

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      • LadyinPurpleNotRed

        LadyinPurpleNotRed February 1, 2013, 6:12 pm

        I’m with you on this one. It’s fine on the rare occasion, but I’d be happy without it

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      • FireStar

        Firestar February 1, 2013, 6:16 pm

        No BLT? No pancetta in rosé vodka sauce over linguini? No bacon wrapped scallops in a saffron sauce? I feel like I should cook for you.

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      • iwannatalktosampson

        iwannatalktosampson February 2, 2013, 1:41 pm

        Me too Addie, me too. Frankly I don’t get the big stink about it. I mean I eat it maybe once a year when someone else makes it – but I could turn it down and not look back. That and hamburger.

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        Addie Pray February 2, 2013, 8:36 pm

        Mmm, burgers. Those I do love. But I think you already know that. Know why? Because you guys know so much about me! You know how I said in that forum about I-can’t-remember that my new year’s resolution is to wash my face and you said that was my resolution last year? It was! And you knew that! I mean, from politics to religion, grooming habits, breakfast burrito preferences, drink, food, boyfriends, friends, family, work…. YOU GUYS KNOW EVERYTHING ABOUT ME. IS THERE ANYTHING I HAVEN’T MENTIONED? I was thinking about this this week. I’m kind of embarrassed. I shouldn’t be, right? I mean, you don’t know *EVERYTHING* about me. Right? Like, remember that one thing that I am totally hush hush about because I have some boundaries and so keep those things to myself? *That* is something I haven’t shared. I feel better. Ok, now I’m going to go take a shower because I haven’t since Thursday. Byeeee.

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      • CatsMeow

        CatsMeow February 1, 2013, 6:30 pm

        I was a vegetarian for a long time. I’m not anymore, but it’s still difficult for me to eat anything that really obviously resembles what it was when it was alive. Bones, veins, fat… it all weirds me out. I love chicken but I don’t like choosing a body part or gnawing if off a bone. Bacon sometimes freaks me out because it is striped. Seafood is often a whole animal just chillin’ on your plate. It’s hard for me to forget about what it was and enjoy it for what it is.

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        painted_lady February 1, 2013, 5:26 pm

        It’s texture for me – mostly it just tastes slimy and greasy, though it can also get grainy or rubbery.

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      • LadyinPurpleNotRed

        LadyinPurpleNotRed February 1, 2013, 5:30 pm

        Exactly!!

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      • katie

        katie February 1, 2013, 5:33 pm

        You need to get some new people to cook dark meat for you…. Lol

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      • LadyinPurpleNotRed

        LadyinPurpleNotRed February 1, 2013, 5:37 pm

        No matter who cooks it, it’s still always slimy and gross. It’s not for me…more for you!

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        painted_lady February 1, 2013, 5:41 pm

        I’ve had people cook it well, and it was…okay…but it’s hard to know who’s going to cook it well.

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      • katie

        katie February 1, 2013, 6:39 pm

        cooking meat is hard! that is the one thing i really suck at.

        i also wonder if this is a byproduct of the over-cooking of white meat. if all you are used to having is dry white meat, going to a properly cooked dark meat will be hard. there was a girl i knew in culinary school who always thought she hated turkey because her mother would cook it to death every thanksgiving. when she finally ate it properly cooked, it was like a whole different meat to her! so maybe thats happening too… thats really common, actually, in america- especially with chicken and pork. but, overall, there isnt that much difference between properly cooked white meat and properly cooked dark meat… more flavor, id say, but it shouldnt be so starkly different!

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        painted_lady February 1, 2013, 9:03 pm

        You’re probably right. My mom is crazy weird about undercooked food, so all meat, eggs, baked goods, etc., were cooked until they were practically sterilized. I didn’t know I liked steak until I was 19 and a friend fixed it medium rare for me and I thought I’d died and gone to heaven. And I liked eggs as it was, but once I discovered poached eggs, it was all over. She swears up and down it was the microbiology class she took in college, but I’m pretty sure there are other people who have taken microbiology, and yet the world hasn’t come to a screeching halt just because some restaurants serve rare steak. So yeah, I’m probably eating chicken way overcooked.

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      • FireStar

        Firestar February 1, 2013, 6:12 pm

        I’m with you Katie. Even Dr.Oz said it is better for you which made me feel better. So much more flavour!

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        jlyfsh February 1, 2013, 7:35 pm

        and usually cheaper since people are scared of it, haha. especially boneless skinless chicken thighs. they are the best.

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      • FireStar

        Firestar February 1, 2013, 7:47 pm

        I’m pretty sure we could be friends!

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        jlyfsh February 2, 2013, 11:26 am

        haha i agree! 🙂

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        Anna February 1, 2013, 11:01 pm

        Apparently you haven’t had perfectly cooked bacon. If it’s perfectly cooked, it should be crispy but just a little tiny bit chewy in the middle. I’ve been told I make the best bacon known to man. 😉 So why again am I single?

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    • CatsMeow

      CatsMeow February 1, 2013, 9:49 pm

      I still have some Halloween decorations up too! Halloween is the best so I might as well just keep them up year ’round.

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    bethany February 1, 2013, 4:14 pm

    This week has been odd for me… I feel like I’ve just been “existing” this week and not really living… Go to work, come home, go to sleep, go to work, come home, go to sleep. I’ve spent a lot of time with my husband this week, but I don’t feel like any of it was quality time. We just kind of co-existed.

    I’ll be hanging out with 2 different sets of friends this weekend, so hopefully interacting with them will help me feel more alive this weekend!

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      jlyfsh February 1, 2013, 4:17 pm

      I had a friend talk about something similar this week. Being stuck on auto pilot and just moving from thing to thing. Hopefully shaking things up and seeing friends will make it better! I think we all get stuck in a similar rut from time to time.

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    • katie

      katie February 1, 2013, 4:20 pm

      ive felt like that almost all of january! weird. glad to know im not the only one lol

      but, on saturday im going to an orientation at an animal shelter.. its my “im doing something with my life!!!” thing.

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        bethany February 1, 2013, 4:23 pm

        Good luck. I volunteered at a shelter when I lived in the city, and orientation was sooooo sad. On the tour of the shelter we saw the “owner surrender” spot, and all those poor animals looked so shocked/sad. You’re doing a great thing by volunteering.

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      • katie

        katie February 1, 2013, 4:42 pm

        i am dreading the sad parts of it. i am *hoping* that my time of living on a farm and killing animals will help, but i am dreading it for sure.

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        kerrycontrary February 1, 2013, 4:30 pm

        I was JUST thinking this morning about volunteering at my county’s humane society. I need to think more about it, but tell me how it is.

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      • katie

        katie February 1, 2013, 4:40 pm

        this is the one im going to:

        its a no kill shelter, which is good. and, actually, ive heard some bad stuff about the humane society. not every one, obviously, but ive heard its not the greatest organization… if you can find a smaller, independent one, thats always good! i dont know how independent or small this shelter is, but i know a family who operates one in denver and they are awesome! they need help usually more then the bigger ones.

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        rachel February 1, 2013, 4:58 pm

        I don’t know much about the national organization, but quite a few shelters call themselves ” ___ Humane Society” but are not affiliated with the national org.

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      • katie

        katie February 1, 2013, 5:03 pm

        oh yea, very true. i think that their website should tell you who they are affiliated with, or who they are owned by, ect…

        this one just has a vet’s office listed as a contributor.. i have no idea what that means. lol

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        AliceInDairyland February 1, 2013, 5:48 pm

        Just had my first Shelter Medicine class yesterday. Big overarching umbrella organizations like HSUS and ASPCA really don’t have much of anything to do with the day to day operations of any shelters. They focus more on education and outreach on a societal scale, and that’s where most of your funds go when you make those donations.

        Individual shelters are either state or privately run as non-profits. Some non-profits do take contracts with county or municipal governments to house strays or animals legally removed from homes in addition to surrenders. I say check out each individual shelter and go from there. Last year WI had an absolutely horrendous experience with a small, independent shelter whereas the county shelter in our area is amazing!

        Anyways, super excited for you Katie. I miss helping out at the shelters!

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      • katie

        katie February 1, 2013, 6:02 pm

        Yea. The bad stuff I’ve heard about humane society isn’t like that they are killing puppies in a secret back room- it’s like typical big-business money stuff.

        There was actually another shelter I wanted to go to a little more near me- they had horses, and how cool is that?- but then the next google hit under their website was about the court case that closed the shelter and convicted the owner of animal cruelty. So sad.

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      • Astronomer

        Astronomer February 1, 2013, 10:09 pm

        I volunteered for PAWS in Chicago when I was between jobs (ahem, funemployed). It was a great shelter, the animals were really well-cared for, and the other volunteers seemed very dedicated. They had the cats grouped by age and temperament in different rooms with climbing structures and furniture. The dogs (for the most part) each got their own rooms. If this PAWS is similar, I think you’ll have a positive experience. Yeah, working with homeless animals will always be sad in some ways, but PAWS in Chicago tries their best to keep the animals happy and make their shelter more home-y than traditional shelters with cages.

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      • katie

        katie February 2, 2013, 10:30 am

        Aw yay this makes me happy to hear!!

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        quixoticbeatnik February 1, 2013, 8:07 pm

        I just started volunteering at an animal shelter two weeks ago! It is also one of those “doing something with my life” kind of things. I decided that I wanted to find a cause that I really cared about and that it would be one of two places that I would volunteer at every month. So, animal shelter. I love it! I get to pet cats for two hours!!! I just have so much love and affection to give to all of them. They are all so cute and so sweet and all have different personalities. I always feel sad when I leave though. I wish I could adopt all of them.

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        quixoticbeatnik February 1, 2013, 8:09 pm

        It is also a small, no-kill shelter, which I really like. They try to really foster out as many animals as possible. All of the dogs they take in are fostered out, and so they only have cats at the actual shelter. And they don’t have any cages. They just keep all of the cats in three big rooms with a lot of shelves and places to sleep!!

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      Trixy Minx February 1, 2013, 6:52 pm

      I feel ya bethany. I have either not been able to sleep or sleeping all day! I need some balance.

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  • Fabelle

    Fabelle February 1, 2013, 4:15 pm

    Ooh, that video! I can’t watch/listen at work, but I love Charli XCX

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    jlyfsh February 1, 2013, 4:16 pm

    We might have some outside lights (that we don’t turn on ;)) still up. I did take the tree down though and all the other decorations, so there’s that at least!

    And I don’t know if anyone has ever tried but I am seriously in love with Zumba right now. I have no rhythm and I am usually a step behind everyone in class because of it, but it’s fun. And we dance to Michael Jackson which makes it even better. I actually look forward to going to the gym now. I’m going tonight to dance out all my work stress.

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      kerrycontrary February 1, 2013, 4:21 pm

      I’ve been wanting to try Zumba for years!I used to do ballet so I love dance inspired classes. I need a class that is at like 5am though due to my schedule…

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        jlyfsh February 1, 2013, 7:26 pm

        So yeah I am not exactly ‘good’ at it. But, I’ve gotten better. I think the right teacher is part of it. Mine uses weighted bars, hand weights, steps, etc to make it better and more well rounded I guess. She always demos the moves before we do them. And really it does get easier! But, it’s definitely not for everyone! Our class has everyone from an 18 year old to I think an 82 year old who come and so obviously what we all do is very different, but the teacher is able to handle it really well. More than any other class you can see where you get what you give, you can just kind of bop to the music and never break a sweat or give it your all and definitely be crazy sweaty by the end!

        I don’t think I’ll ever be able to dance but the people in my class make it so fun, that it doesn’t seem to matter. And I’m pretty happy with the results! I definitely notice that with each class my endurance has gotten better. And when I do the 30 day shred now it’s actually ‘easier’ although I don’t think that video will ever be easy 🙂

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      bethany February 1, 2013, 4:28 pm

      I did Zumba once, and it was the worst experience of my life.
      I was a cross between Monica and Phoebe in this clip:

      But I’m happy that other people like Zumba… I just can’t dance unless I’m about 5 shots deep 🙂

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      • MaterialsGirl

        MaterialsGirl February 1, 2013, 4:51 pm

        i tried this a few weeks ago. I’m horrible at it and look completely stupid and not sexy at all

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        Anna February 1, 2013, 11:06 pm

        Being sexy while you’re doing it isn’t the point. The point is having fun and burning calories. I did zumba for awhile before I went on night shift and couldn’t go anymore. I guarantee I looked like an idiot doing it but it was fun and I tightened up my body so I didn’t care.

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  • katie

    katie February 1, 2013, 4:22 pm

    haha.. re: christmas decorations… jake likes to take them down dec 26th. seriously. he is so quick about it. its *almost* annoying.

    im going to volunteer orientation for an animal shelter on saturday (yay! hopfully!), and then hanging out with a friend on sunday and then watching the superbowl with her boyfriend’s family… i need something to make! what are you guys doing for superbowl? i cant do anything mexican, because they are mexican and his mother makes the most amazing mexican food ever. i could never compare… lol

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    • theattack

      theattack February 1, 2013, 4:33 pm

      I think I might make some buffalo chicken dip for the superbowl party I’m going to. And maybe some cupcakes too, just because.

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      • iwannatalktosampson

        iwannatalktosampson February 2, 2013, 1:45 pm

        Ha that’s funny cupcakes are a staple at all football parties I throw. Because why not?

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      lets_be_honest February 1, 2013, 4:49 pm

      We’re making cake pops, and my famous dip (aka the only dip I can make: layer of cream cheese, then beans, then cheddar. Oven for a hot second. sounds hard, right?!)

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      kerrycontrary February 1, 2013, 4:57 pm

      I’m making rocky road brownies.

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    • Fabelle

      Fabelle February 1, 2013, 4:58 pm

      Spinach dip? I make mine by whipping up an alfredo sauce, then combining that with 2 packets of spinach, 2 cans of artichokes, a block of mozzarella, 1/2 cup parmesan, & 1/2 cup romano, and sticking in the oven.

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      jlyfsh February 1, 2013, 7:32 pm

      we just made a version of buffalo chicken dip but with shrimp this week from the skinnytaste blog. it was pretty amazing!

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      vizslalvr February 3, 2013, 12:06 am

      I’m making this:

      It’s mostly pantry items. I’ve successfully subbed cream cheese for the mascarpone. And I use full fat for everything because, um, it’s the effing Superbowl. Why pretend you are cutting calories? Even if you try, you will fail.

      My husband is making hummus. Also super easy and quick.

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  • theattack

    theattack February 1, 2013, 4:32 pm

    I bet there’s a really shady reason why that’s going on. The Christmas tree might be his way of making his apartment look normal when really it’s some sort of crime haven. Someone saw you peering in, and now he’s on the watch for people who might know too much. Don’t peer into that window again, Wendy!

    Sorry, maybe that’s scary. I’m paranoid right now. I accidentally walked into a weird situation like that this week, and while I don’t think it’s dangerous per se, I’m really nervous and angry about it. I really want to post about it because I’m super pissed, but I can’t. Argghhh. This week has been so freaking stressful because of the whole thing, and now I have to stay late tonight. I just want the weekend so so bad.

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    • Fabelle

      Fabelle February 1, 2013, 4:37 pm

      I am like, curious beyond belief what kind of weird situation you could’ve walked into that was similar.

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      • theattack

        theattack February 1, 2013, 4:45 pm

        haha, Sorry, I hate people who are vague like that, and now I’m doing it. I walked into something that is very white-collar shady while I was cluelessly trying to do something normal. So not like a meth lab or human trafficking ring, but something pretty despicable, and I am really trying to watch my back right now. If it ever comes out in the news, I’ll post a link about it.

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      MissDre February 1, 2013, 4:41 pm

      He’s probably got a grow-op or something going on.

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      painted_lady February 1, 2013, 5:40 pm

      I dated a guy who smoked a lot of pot and was really good friends with his dealer (this relationship didn’t last long, fortunately), and one night we went to hang out with this guy in his second apartment (the one where he kept all his weed and whatever else he sold, along with all his contacts and that was mostly where his clients went, though the guy I was dating had also been to his real apartment). It was so fucking weird – the living room was furnished just enough so that anyone looking through the window or that came to the door would think it was actually lived in unless they came in, which no one ever did that he only did business with. But the rest of the apartment was completely empty. I think there were a couple of chairs, maybe a couch, an area rug or something, but absolutely nothing else. I didn’t quite get it, and it was pretty freaky.

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  • SweetsAndBeats

    SweetsAndBeats February 1, 2013, 4:41 pm

    Is it weird that I absolutely love it when I have the opportunity to look into somebody’s house? I mean, I’m not breaking into yards or using a telescope or anything, but if your windows are wide open and I’m walking down the street, you better bet I’ll be rubbernecking as I walk by to see what’s inside. I do the same thing when at stop lights, too – watching other people in their cars. There’s just something so interesting about it. Idk. I promise I’m not a creeper.

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      kerrycontrary February 1, 2013, 4:50 pm

      I love doing that in DC in the rich neighborhoods. Everyone has big windows on their row houses and they keep them open when they are partying with all the fabulous people.

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      bethany February 1, 2013, 5:10 pm

      I do it all the time. In college we used to walk past this one really cute row home all the time and we made up a fake life for the people that lived there. Mark and Leslie… They were cool, they liked craft beer and hiking 🙂

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      GatorGirl February 2, 2013, 1:19 pm

      I do it all the time. I love looking into people’s windows. Other people’s homes and what they do in side of them is fasinating.

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      vizslalvr February 3, 2013, 12:08 am

      My favorite hobby is eavesdropping in restaurants. So I think it’s okay, because clearly I have no problem with invading others’ privacy. Which is why our blinds are always closed (we live on a main street).

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  • BriarRose

    BriarRose February 1, 2013, 4:45 pm

    I feel like my father but all I can think is what a fire hazard that tree is.

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  • lemongrass

    Lemongrass February 1, 2013, 5:02 pm

    I dated a guy once whose parents were obsessed with Christmas. It was really creepy! I went over to meet them for thanksgiving and there was decorations all over the place and a sign on the fridge saying ‘X days til Christmas’. They had Christmas wallpaper in the bathroom. This was Canadian thanksgiving too, in October. I mentioned something about all the decorations and he said those were the ‘year round decorations’. His parents also tried to look like mr. and mrs. clause. I wish I was making this up. Needless to say, that was not my husband.

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    • theattack

      theattack February 1, 2013, 5:07 pm

      Creeeeeeepy.

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    csp February 1, 2013, 5:07 pm

    So Wendy, I had a theory about your Creepy Brownstone until you said the guy was in the window. So in my area, there were these crazy big “Carriage Houses” built. That is slang for big ass townhomes. I live in a quaint historical town that is well outside of the city. It seemed odd to me to make these things because most people who move out this way want space and land. Anyway, they were selling for 800k – 1M and the market crashed and most of them are sitting there empty. They are creepy and there are Christmas Candles and wreaths still out. At night you see these candles and it just reminds me that they are begging to be sold.

    The other thing I was thinking is that maybe the creepy guy is lonely and Christmas is a time he gets to see people so he doesn’t want to take them down. Or maybe he is old and he keeps asking his kids to come over and help him take them down and they don’t.

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      scattol February 1, 2013, 5:42 pm

      For sale sounds very reasonable. They always say that a house shouldn’t be empty and a house full of furniture isn’t cheap.

      That doesn’t explain the guy standing in the middle of the living room though. I mean the house could be empty.

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    scattol February 1, 2013, 5:43 pm

    I have hear from friends that some people put so much money to buying the house that they literally have no money left for furniture and that you will see some of these expensive houses with empty rooms they can’t affoard to furnish. That might be the most likely. Scenario. NYC isn’t cheap afterall.

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    Addie Pray February 1, 2013, 5:54 pm

    I just want to say that a thoroughly enjoyed arguing (no, discussing? debating?) on today’s short cuts. And for those who disagreed with me, don’t fret, you get the last laugh, because I wasted so much time refreshing/commenting that I did not get my work done today and I am now packing a bag of work to take home with me. Boo! You win! 😉

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    • CatsMeow

      CatsMeow February 1, 2013, 6:23 pm

      Same here! I was thoroughly engrossed in DW for the majority of the work day. It’s a true addiction. I just could…not….stop…refreshing!!

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  • AKchic_

    AKchic_ February 1, 2013, 6:53 pm

    Ha ha! My landlord unplugged my outdoor lights 2 days after X-mas and told me that it was time to take them down (also tripping our circuit breaker, again – which caused me to yet again complain about said outlet). Our city is nicknamed “The City of Lights” and we have a campaign to have (usually white) lights up from November through March to brighten up the darkness. This was the same day she told me that I wasn’t doing enough to keep the moisture out of our carport. Have I ever mentioned my landlord is a nutjob?

    I still have white lights up in my front window, but other than that, the rest of my stuff is taken down. Mainly to appease my landlord because I am tired of her constant bitching about stuff. Can’t wait to move. Can’t wait to have enough money TO move, really. *sigh* Can’t wait for the duplex I’m supposed to be buying to be ready.

    Sounds to me like the place with the holiday stuff is for sale, and the guy standing around in there is the realtor or the owner (hoping someone will buy it). Google the address and see what pops up.

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    • Dear Wendy

      Wendy February 1, 2013, 7:03 pm

      Mystery solved!! I did google it and the bldg is for sale – for a cool 2 mil and change.

      Lights not included.

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      • katie

        katie February 1, 2013, 7:21 pm

        good- at least it wasnt something creepy!

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      • CatsMeow

        CatsMeow February 1, 2013, 7:29 pm

        Haha. You shouldn’t have told us yet so we could formulate some more conspiracy theories. 😉

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  • Emily

    Emily February 1, 2013, 7:55 pm

    Confession: I still have my Christmas tree up. I am in long distance relationship with a man who lives in South Dakota. We put up my tree together and looking at it reminds me of him. I also love the whimsical ornaments I own including a mermaid, four leaf clover, a ballerina, a gnome, and a flying pig just to name a few.

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    canefan February 1, 2013, 9:15 pm

    I didn’t get to put up my own tree this year because I was at the in-laws. But at their place, I definitely went all out with the tree. And then promptly left the country on vacation right after Christmas and never returned to put any of the decorations away. Whoops. I’m pretty sure the tree is still up!

    This week was… exhausting. I just started my last semester of grad school (yay!!) but that also means it’s thesis time (not yay)! I started my masters project, working with transgender women, and that was also completely exhausting. Those girls can TALK. FOR. HOURS. That, coupled with insomnia this week means that I’m now a zombie. I’m definitely looking forward to sleeping in this weekend!!

    OH so I’m thinking about getting another dog. I definitely want some sort of poodle mix, mostly because they’re so freakin adorable. And smart. And don’t shed nearly as much as my beagle. Any thoughts or suggestions?

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    • call-me-hobo

      call-me-hobo February 1, 2013, 10:35 pm

      Goldendoodles look like giant teddy bears- http://goldendoodles.com/photocontest2012/dec2012.htm

      I have a boxer, though. If you want a smart, loving dog who absolutely loves being around people- get a boxer. They do shed a bit (but they are short hair) and also tend to be on the hyperactive side. However, after owning my first one, I don’t know if I could go back to any other breed…

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        jlyfsh February 2, 2013, 6:43 am

        my cousin has two boxers and she says the same thing. she’ll never get a different breed. 🙂

        as far as getting a second dog make sure your first is involved in the process of ‘choosing’ if you get an adult dog. and if you get a puppy make sure they still feel special, etc. we got our girl first and she was extremely opinionated when it came to picking out our second dog. it turns out she’s pretty sure she’s queen of all dogs and needed someone who was submissive 🙂

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        canefan February 2, 2013, 2:02 pm

        I was thinking along the lines of a spoodle (cocker spaniel/poodle) or a shih-poo. They all look like squishy little teddy bears!

        The beagle we have now is my husbands, from before we were married, and he’ll def be involved in the new dog process. We were actually thinking about getting another beagle to keep him company (he’s only 4 so not that old yet). But personally, there is already way too much shedding happening and I know adding another beagle would make it infinitely worse. I want a cute, smart, nonshedding lil buddy of my own!

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      painted_lady February 2, 2013, 10:31 am

      Canefan – What’s the project about? I admire trans women so much, and all that I’ve met are so funny and brave.

      I have a labradoodle, or a schnoodle, and he’s the sweetest dog ever, but he’s really bad and really smart, so he’s also really destructive. I love him, though, and I would absolutely get another one.

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        canefan February 2, 2013, 2:10 pm

        So I’ve done research with people at risk for, or already infected with, HIV. I have been working with the trans population in Philly for about a year now and through my research I’ve found that they have scary high rates of HIV. However, during my focus groups, they were totally against having to sit through another HIV prevention program, which totally killed my original plan haha. What I did instead was take another approach: I found out what their risk factors were and created an educational support group labelled as a general health and wellness program. Each week, we sit down and discuss a different risk factor, like mental health or drug use/abuse. I give them the facts/knowledge/information and sort of moderate the discussion and they sit and talk and work it all out. Its actually really really cool. Even though its only been a week, some of them have already thanked me for giving them an outlet to talk about these issues, which totally made the exhaustion worth it 🙂

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      • CatsMeow

        CatsMeow February 2, 2013, 8:00 pm

        Do you think that the sharing of needles for hormone or other injections (if they are not getting them legally) contributes to the high rates of HIV infection, and if so, how much? I understand that the sexual behaviors among the trans population can tend to be riskier than average, but I always wonder about the needles too.

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    Anna February 1, 2013, 11:08 pm

    I just took my Christmas decorations down a few days ago. I’ve been so busy working overtime, interviewing for new jobs and traveling that I just didn’t have time. And when I’m home I’m really lazy, no lie. I put on my yoga pants, drink wine like there’s no tomorrow and refrain from doing anything productive.

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  • avatar

    GatorGirl February 2, 2013, 1:25 pm

    We took our Christmas decorations down on NYE. Boooo. I’m a little sad because I can not think of any good Valentine’s Day decor so we have no holiday decorations up right now.

    On a positive note I’m kicking ass at figuring out a bunch of wedding stuff this weekend so hopefully my stress level will go down some 🙂

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  • liz

    Liz February 3, 2013, 3:44 pm

    I saw Icona Pop perform that song not long ago. Soooo catchy.

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