More tiny people to be scared of…

Umm. I need to stop browsing mindless websites when bored and maybe I wouldn’t come across more shit that scares the hell out of me.

File this under, holy shit.

File this under reasons I’m feeling better about my hobbit like existence AND people I don’t want to run into on the street.

In case you need to read more about this tiny lady, here you go. I’m only including it because I feel like just posting a picture makes me an asshole.

Lastly, I’d like to hire her to stand on my bedside shelf and when the sun rises, shriek, WAKE UP, WAKE UP, while clapping her tiny hands. Because that makes sense and it’s the first thing I thought of when I considered the very important question, hmmm, what could I hire her for around the house?

Happy long weekend, all.

Prepping for 2012

Tonight I got back in creative mode and I spent the night drafting my resolutions for the New Year. When finished, 4 days early, I posted them on my fridge so I could be held accountable BEFORE I actually wake up on January 1 this upcoming year. Yay me. Way to be productive tonight.

I don’t really feel like posting them on the blog, as I decided to stick with more serious, personal development/real life goals and didn’t make a list of weird and crazy stuff like hunting down juices or being able to lift my leg over my head.

Um, both of which I can check off last year’s list. *So proud.

Further, I think those bizarre goals are much more me and much more fun but I would love to have a year that is productive and SIMPLE. Nothing about me is simple but really. I could really, really use some simplicity. Just a tad.

And inspiration. I could use a bit more of that too to kick start the New Year. And tonight I found a bit while browsing other blogs. Tonight I ran across this quote and little picture and it seemed to fit in with tonight’s mood and with all the creative energy and big promises that go into starting a new year.

here’s to another life changing year…

Missing home at Christmas…

Today is such a blah day and it’s only two days before Christmas. It’s raining again here. It’s warm. It’s dreary and muddy and the Mr. is setting me off by refusing to leave work early again for the millionth day this month and my face has become some winter nightmare of dry skin and wintery rashes and I am milky as shit and I am eating cookies like I’m in some Eat Until You Look Like Santa contest and oh, I’m at work TODAY STILL EVEN THOUGH I HAVE THE REST OF THE DAY OFF (oh PLEASE guess why I’m still here). It’s not
Christmas-y and I feel like this:

Things aren’t bad, though. I’m just a fucking bitch today for who knows what reason. And it’s a shame that I’ve got such a bad attitude because things have been fantastic lately around the house. Lots of shopping and holiday wine drinking, wrapping and Christmas movie watching. The tree is decorated and the house is clean and the presents are put out (but not under the tree because goddamned Dante can’t be trusted) and today is the last trip to the store before our 2nd Annual Hopkins Family Christmas Sleepover.

Oh and in case you’re wondering, the Holiday Sleepover isn’t one of those fucking weird cuddle party nonsense things. It’s a 36 hour booze and food fest that revolves around fun things like misletoe and The Christmas Story and a Trouble tournament, RPS games, PJ wearing and gift opening. It’s for those of us that don’t go back to see our families in the States. We get to pass out in one house before Santa comes and wake up to celebrate Jesus, or in my case, Bloody Marys, the next day together. As a big Stuttgart family. I am positive it will be festive and drunken and lots of fun…I just don’t feel like it’s Christmas.

At home, Christmas is:

Cookie day with all the ladies in the family weeks before the holiday. My only contribution to this has been tasting and storytelling. I let them bake.

Shopping to get 75% of your presents with your sister on Christmas Eve

The smell of cranberry muffins and coffee on Christmas morning

Lots of quiche and wine and at least two meals in CT

Driving to see the Christmas lights

Spiking our coffees Christmas morning

Fighting over whose turn it is to open the next present

Waking up at 5am to wrap all the presents on Christmas because wine made that impossible the night before

Naps by the fireplace

Gin and tonic drinking…our favorite drink that tastes like Christmas trees…well, if you have enough gin, that is

24 hour day/7 day week Christmas movie marathons

Chinese food and board games on Christmas Eve

Wearing matching pajamas (my mother’s addition to Christmas. The photos are ridiculous)

Watching the snow fall

Being around family…that I think is what I miss so much. Having Cupcake here is making me miss the rest of my crazy family even more….
So hmph. I’m going to have to do something to get in the spirit. Or drink something. That would help, right? 🙂

Happy Christmas weekend, everyone.

Real Housewives of South Boston at Christmas

So today Mr. H showed me a video on and it is a fucking riot. For all my friends from New England, all my Tom Brady lovers, all my girls who make Boston proud, this one is for you.

and this

My personal favorite part,

You only have to fucking advertise because you’re on route fucking 34. Where the fuck is that? Fucking Danvers?? Fuck you. (or whatever she says, because I’m really laughing too hard to go back and listen to her again)

And yeah, this is totally South Boston.

Winter in Austria

Glimpse of our drive through Austria this weekend

“Antisthenes says that in a certain faraway land the cold is so intense that words freeze as soon as they are uttered, and after some time then thaw and become audible, so that words spoken in winter go unheard until the next summer.”
– Plutarch, Moralia

Being scared of things that make no sense….

The other night I woke up with a start at 3am and knew something was wrong. I felt a huge sense of anxiety and kept my eyes closed as I practiced my fake heavy sleep breathing noise, which is what I do when some noise at night scares me. I either play dead or I play asleep.

I heard heavy footsteps coming down my hall. Heavy footsteps that got closer and closer until they stopped outside my door. I quickly checked for the dogs but knew it wasn’t them. This was the sound of heavy boots. My dogs sound like they’re tap dancers.

I reached over and felt that Mr. H was dead to the world. He would be useless to me in burglar attack and I figured it would cause too much commotion to wake him up because the boots were already outside the door. I was going to have to pretend I was asleep. This seemed to work sometimes on Law and Order.

Then it stopped. I allowed myself to breathe.

But then I felt it. This heaviness that filled the room and swooshed from the door to my side of the bed and then stopped again. The windows were closed. Nothing should be moving, especially since the door was shut as well.

And nothing moved again. It just stayed right next to me for almost three minutes (or a million if you were in my head) and then it was gone. The heaviness left and the footsteps walked back down the hall.

I waited another minute to breathe…an all-time record for me, I think, as I can only stay under water about twelve seconds.

I tried to tell the Mr. about it the next day and he just stopped me when I said something about footsteps and said to me, “Don’t. Stop.”
We have a rule about scaring each other for no reason. We both blame that fucking bullshit movie Paranormal Activity.

Anyway. Being scared of noises and ghosts and horror movie type things doesn’t happen to me a lot. Being scared of bizarre and irrational circumstances happens more often. And so, in the spirit of scaring the hell out of myself, here are a few things that would cause me to up and die if they happened. And I assume they’ll all happen to me, which makes it even more odd.

Things that scare me that probably scare no one else in the world

1. Having someone throw a snake at me. Yes, I am scared of snakes in general but I really lose my fucking mind at the thought of one being tossed at my head. This is one reason I never stand next to the snake holding people at the circus or the zoo. You never know when they could toss it at you to be funny. Funny or assholes.

2. Having someone lying under my car in a dark parking lot and cutting my Achilles with a knife as I try to unlock the car. I’ve read that bullshit like that happens around Christmastime. Good luck to everyone going to the mall. Also, I think this was actually a rumor that I heard, not read, but I still believe it anyway.

3. Tripping and falling and cracking a tooth. Mostly the thought of my tooth ripping through my lip. And also not having two front teeth. Or a whole lip. This fear is based on vanity alone. And my constant ability to fall over nothing.

4. A clown in a parade spotting me in a crowd and racing towards me, smiling and waving. Fuck that. I’d just pass out.

5. Someone that hates me tossing acid in my face and ruining said face. I think this has happened to a very small percentage of people in life and I’ve only seen it once or twice on Oprah and I think it involved an angry and fucking batshit ex OR some weird cultural/religious ritual/punishment but either way, I’m positive it could happen to me. Then again, wait. Didn’t this happen to the singer Seal? I think it might have and he turned out alright. In fact, he married Heidi “The Body” Klum. Hmmm. I might need to get over this one.

6. Losing my voice. This one should be obvious.

7. Being chased in the dark. I encounter this every time I do laundry in the basement at night. I’m that person that shuts off the light and runs as fast as I can (not fast at all) up the stairs until I’m in the living room or around other people, at which point I stop running fast, catch my breath and look like, What? I totally wasn’t just running away from the dark.

I think that might be it for this week. I figured since you’re all caught up in holiday madness and cheer, you would like a reminder that some of us are just acting insane like it’s any other time of year. 🙂

Foot Fetish FAIL

I was thinking of making this an Ask Heather, since I haven’t done one in MONTHS, but honestly, no one wrote to me asking when it’s appropriate to sneak up on someone and touch their feet.

For the record, it’s never appropriate to touch someone’s feet unless
1. they ask you to
2. you’re naked and your feet are wrapped around their head and then it’s fair game
3. if you’re getting a massage that you paid for

Outside of those three instances which I feel touching someone’s feet would be appropriate, all other circumstances are not. Including touching someone’s foot you don’t know on a bus ride. Which definitely and not surprisingly happened to me last week.

It was the ride home from the traditional dinner and my dancing debut. All of the participants on the bus, including me, my friends and 130 or so other people. I was positioned towards the back of the bus, surrounded by friends, laughing and deep in conversation about how to open a couple of wine bottles without a corkscrew.

Wait. I need to show you how I was positioned so you have a good image of how this sneak attack went down.

There is no better way to draw a bus ride.

So there I am, sitting in the aisle seat, talking to all of my friends that are marked with check marks. My legs are crossed, as I’m wearing a dress and nylons and my feet are angled in the aisle. Now I’m in the middle of a goddamned conversation with the friend next to me when out of nowhere, I see this guy one seat up on the opposite side LEAN BACK, give me the side eye and reach into the aisle. I pay very little attention to him because he also has the drunk eye and I am in the middle of talking to someone else.

Well I WAS talking to someone else until I feel him put his damned fingers IN MY SHOE, on the inside of my foot where my arch is, at which point he rubs his finger on my foot and says in some sort of non-whisper,

“I like your feet.” I imagine he thought that was a sexy line or at least I think he did by making some sort of weird kissy/fish/Zoolander face at me.

I pulled my feet out of the aisle, smiled awkwardly and said thanks.
Then I turned into my seat and carried on talking, hoping no one was paying attention to the foot lover.

“So anyway, New York City at Christmas time is lovely,” I carried on to my friend.

“Pssst.” He was now psssting me from across the aisle again. I do NOT like it when people pssst me.

“What.” My question came out flatly, as I was not interested in a foot tickle.

“I have a foot fetish and I NEED A FIX. I love your feet. Let me rub them.” He was making the Zoolander face again and I was trying not to laugh because I thought the only people who said I NEED A FIX where heroin addicts on Law and Order. This was fucking bizarre.

What was more bizarre is that my feet are not very lovable. I mean they’re fine in flip-flops and between April-September my toes are painted and prettied up but I’m not in the running to be the next American foot model. In fact, most of my friends tell me I have little hobbit feet. This doesn’t even bother me much because I have been compared to so many magical creatures (including a garden gnome once) that I’ve lost count of these little people references.

Nothing to get all worked up about, right??

Sidenote: everyone should know that this is the first definition for the word fetish.

Definition of FETISH
1a : an object (as a small stone carving of an animal) believed to have magical power to protect or aid its owner; broadly : a material object regarded with superstitious or extravagant trust or reverence

Umm, so before we go further, YES. My feet are apparently magical. Now moving on…

I ignored his foot rubbing requests because the way he was looking at me made me think he also wanted to put my feet in his mouth WHICH WAS NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN because that shit is for weirdos (and Mr. H, though he hates rubbing my feet, would pummel him for touching my feet) and so I turned away and blatantly ignored him.

“So ANYWAY. You’ve seen the tree right? The big tree right in the…” I carried on to my friend, as though there was no foot propositioning going on a minute earlier.

“Did that just happen? That really just happened, right?” My friends are much more observant sometimes than I give them credit for.

“Yes, yes it did,” I said as I shrugged.

And with that, I decided I’d never leave my sweet little feet unattended again.

My Lithuanian folk dance debut

So there are two good stories from last week’s Lithuanian work trip and I was going to start out with the pervy one but I’ll save that for tomorrow. Today I’ll tell you the story of my debut as a Lithuanian folk dancer.

First, I’d like to note that contrary to popular belief, I do not (always) sign myself up for these ridiculous events. In fact, this one time I was sitting quietly, minding my own business during our traditional dinner (which the nation we’re staying in hosts), when the General from my office, my big boss, decides razz me by making me act like a circus clown in front of 150 people in a small beer hall. With no warning.

I’m sitting at a table with ten of my friends. We had just finished a 4 course meal and there were 4 or so empty bottles of wine on the table. I’m wearing an old dress I hate. I’m stuffed into nylons I hate. I’m wearing shoes one inch too big and my hair looks stupid. This is the night he decides to play games with me during his speech, though it’s not shocking really, because he loves giving me a hard time because he knows it makes everyone laugh. And he also knows I love attention.

So there I am, enjoying his speech and sitting back MINDING MY OWN BUSINESS WHEN HE SAYS,

“And thank you to our host, Colonel XYZ of Lithuania, for his generosity in hosting. What you don’t know about Colonel XYZ is that he’s a skilled Lithuanian folk dancer and his dancing goes back to when he’s a child. He’s going to do a dance for us tonight and all we’re missing is a lovely lady to join him. Hmmmm, now who do we have?” He pretends to look around and I realize I’ve been set up.

Half an hour earlier, one of my coworkers had brought me over a shot, put it on the table in front of me and said, “This is a peace offering.” I of course didn’t care what it was for and ignored the fact that I didn’t need a peace offering and as I started to piece this together, I started to get that attractive neck rash thing I get when I’m going to throw up due to nerves and anxiety. I started kind of rocking in my seat like Rain Man and saying over and over again, pleasedearfuckinggodno.pleasedearfuckinggodno.

But oh yes.

“You know, I haven’t seen Heather a lot this conference, which isn’t normal. So WHERE IS HEATHER? HEATHER, COME ON UP. I know you’ll be a good sport about all this….” Ohmygod. First of all, Heather was BUSY WITH WORK ALL WEEK and secondly, jesus FUCK ME, the world hates me.

Now I know some of you reading this are thinking, yeah right. You are an attention whore, Heather. You love this shit. And ok, to be fair, I do, to an extent. But I love public speaking. I love telling a story. I love making people laugh. I do NOT love folk dancing in front of 150 people doing a dance I’ve never done while all wined-up wearing a dress with too much cleave. Really. I just wanted to throw up or shape shift.

I feel my face turn bright red and my hands start shaking. Everyone in the room is either 1. laughing 2. cheering 3. chanting. I was trying to fake smile, walk and not pass out the entire walk up the aisle to the dance floor. The dance floor, which I should note, which was featuring these folksy people,

Not an exaggeration. These people were performing at our dinner.

and the very important Colonel, who I had only met once, on opening day, and we only shook hands and certainly didn’t set up a fucking dance date for later in the week.

I make it to the front of the room and the General hugs me, cheering is still going on and I say to everyone, I SWEAR TO GOD IF THIS MAKES FB I WILL….At which point everyone claps to mask the fact that I was going to threaten death on soldiers from 40 countries but that’s what you fucking get for making me circus clown of the night. Then I tell my big boss he’s dead to me, which is also not acceptable but he got quite the kick out of it as he launched me into the arms of the Colonel.

“I’m really sorry,” I whispered as I took his hands in a criss-cross, folksy manner. “I am the world’s worst dancer.”

“That makes two of us,” he said with a smile as he dragged me clear across the floor.

For five and a half minutes STRAIGHT, I was sweating, wheezing, stomping my feet, swinging my arms, twirling around, faking smiling and trying my hardest not to pass the fuck out. Every single time he twirled me it was for a minute and all I could think as I faced the blurry crowd was just keep breathing, just keep breathing, as I saw flashes and video taping from the crowd.

Yep. And around and around I went.

And finally, after 5 minutes and 21 seconds, it was done. Sweaty and red faced, I made it back to my seat, slammed back some wine and watched 8 iPhone videos of me dancing like an idiot.

**There are plenty of videos of this. When I have one, I will post it. That is a promise.

Fall to Winter

    World traveling has kept me away from the desk and using the camera instead. But, now that I’m back, I’m ready to spill about a few fun stories from my travels. A few stories which include (when I write tomorrow):
    1. My appearance as a Lithuanian folk dancer extraordinaire. If I can get my hands on the video, I’ll post it.
    2. How I’ve been stalked because I have nice feet, which actually goes against everything everyone else in life has claimed…which is that I have little hobbit feet.
    3. How many adults can you fit in a sauna and does that ratio have anything to do with the amount of alcohol being drank at the same time?
    4. My experience with the mouse in the sleeping bag.

    But in the meantime, because I have to go to my office Christmas party less than 24 hours after walking off a plane from being gone for ten days, I’m going to have to stick with a few photos tonight. Enjoy. I’ll be sure to give you something more mouthy and thought out this week…

    First, we kicked it in St. Wolfgang to end the fall season.

    Drank by the water and took in the view.

    Toured a champagne vineyard, if that’s what they’re even called. Either way, I walked away with six bottles of this, which I never really drink anyway.

    And let’s all remember we cooked the French dinner.

    Let's please note that the hair on the man on the left is fucking scrumptious.

    Where I drank so much wine that I could actually feel my liver failing with each sip. Also, I started wearing leggings and tall boots, which is going really well, thanks for asking.

    Me and my personal stylist/partner in crime, Ms. Amber Smith

    Then a few days after all that, I shot off to Vilnius for work for a conference for ten days, which I just returned from late last night.

    And the city center…

    And the Old Town, where you could drink and eat to your little heart’s desire, which I certainly did not take part in….

    So. There’s a little preview for you if you’re bored. Now I’m off to play Dirty Santa, drink some bevvies, eat some fried pork and enjoy a little office cheer. Happy Lazy Sunday to you. 🙂