Thursday, July 30, 2009

Greylock Glen

Yesterday's hike was extremely humid and buggy. I lost count of the number of gnats that flew directly into my eyeballs after 10. The trails through Greylock Glen were barely marked and involved a lot of slogging thru 4-foot high weeds. Mary got guilted into a visit with her mom, so I was on my own. When I finally got to the top of Ragged Mountain, a spritely 70-year-old hiker dude greeted me. "Looks like we're in for a doozy today!" Storm clouds surrounded us and obscured the view of Mt. Greylock directly to our west. He was off down Bellows Pipe trail to another vista, but "if I hear thunder, I'm gonna lose elevation fast, that's for sure!" I took the remnants of an old ski trail called "Thunderbolt" back down the mountain. Apropos, since there was indeed a lot of rumbling. I was never quite so happy to see my car—and the extra shirt I'd brought to change into.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Et Voila!

I wanted to title this post "It's Clementine, bitches!" but decided against it. You know, for SEO purposes.

I did it! I diddled it. It got did. Then I drove home with the windows and sunroof open just to achieve that special rat's nest effect on top.

I'm liking it! The new 'do will be put to the ultimate test on Sunday when I serve breakfast to 170+ people in an un-air-conditioned, old-timey sweat cauldron—aka my restaurant workplace. We'll see just how kicky it looks then. But me and my new 'do are hiking up Ragged Mountain tomorrow, so I'll have a chance to break it in, sweat-wise.

Thanks for your support on the Big Hair Question, blog-reading besties!

Monday, July 27, 2009

summit report

Eight things I learned hiking Mt. Monadnock:

1) That sh^t is hard! At least half of the "trail" is over bald rock faces that don't look like anyone is supposed to "hike" them. And yet, there are people all around you who are managing to do it. Many of them will be children. And they will make you feel very, very old and sweaty.

2) Speaking of which, if you are a sweater (i.e. a person who sweats a lot--not a woolen item), do not wear yoga pants to hike a mountain. The accumulated sweat will make you look like you have a massive incontinence problem.

3) If your friend Mary forgets to pack a lunch and you have to stop at McDonald's on the way, don't worry. You will still encounter people hiking the mountain who are far less "hike-y" than you. For instance, the camper who clearly never learned to tie his shoes. Or the dudes who have to take a cigarette-and-chips break just 1/4 mile into the hike.

4) You will definitely be passed (sometimes, repeatedly) by people who are far more "hike-y" than you. If, in the course of your hike, one particular woman passes you FOUR TIMES on her way up and down from the summit, do not become alarmed. You should probably ask for her autograph, because she must be training to climb Everest. Please, please let her be training to climb Everest. Otherwise, she's just a weirdo with some sort of exercise addiction.

5) If you pass a group of girl scouts on their way back down from the summit, they will lie. Especially when they say "you're mostly past the hard part." That one was a total lie.

6) You will definitely have moments where you think you're going to fall off the face of the mountain. I believe I shouted "aaaaaah, I don't know where to put my feet! helppppppp!" more than once.

7) Once you reach the summit and begin heading back down, you can make up all kinds of stuff to tell the people you pass on their way up, like "turn back now! save yourself!!!" or "Oh, yeah, you're totally almost there."

8) If you pick a really cloudy day to climb the mountain and end up in a fog bank at the summit (pictured above), you might think "Oh, we'll just have to come back and hike it again on a sunny day." This is just the altitude talking.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


June was a miserable month. It rained every day. I felt cooped up and trapped. Then July came and brought the sun and I suddenly had this overwhelming desire to climb a mountain. I needed some perspective.

So last week, I climbed Mt. Greylock, Massachusetts' highest peak, for the first time since high school. It was great—I got completely drenched in sweat, realized I'd totally underestimated the amount of water I needed to carry and became totally dehydrated, and on the way down my knees burned in a way that made me feel they were going to literally pop any second. But I did it! And then I drove straight to the McDonald's conveniently located at the foot of the mountain and ordered a large chocolate milkshake.

Over my celebratory shake, I decided I needed to take a big, summit-gaining hike every week this summer. Tomorrow, my friend Mary and I are going to climb Mt. Monadnock in NH. According to the parks website, it's the second most-climbed mountain in the world, after Mt. Fuji. So I guess we'll have a lot of company.

I'm hoping that this will be the summer when I finally get my ass back into shape and gain some much-needed perspective on my life and my future. Plus, I hope to take some really cool mountain pix. :) Do you have a summer goal? Please tell me!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Hair Stalking

I'm stalking this model. I want her haircut. I think. I'm not sure. Ack! It's short.

Do you do this? Do you find a model with a sweet hairdo and follow her around, ripping out pictures of her? My friend B. in London also recommended this lady as a good haircut model for me: Annie Mac, a dj for BBC Radio 1

What do you guys think? I've been in a tizzy since my last salon cut, when I made the mistake of asking the stylist what he would do if he had his druthers. "All this length? Gone." Gulp. But he's probably right. (scroll down to the wedding post to see the current--clearly ill-advised--length)

(all the pix of the blond with the covetable hair are from Garnet Hill; first pic of Annie Mac from Labellife, second from Telegraph UK )

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Photo daze

So I got a hand-me-down camera from my mom for my birthday. In general, this would probably be about as exciting as getting a pack of Jockey underpants. But my mom is a bit of a digital camera junkie. So what I got was an Olympus Evolt E-510 DSLR with three lenses. I've spent what few sunny days we've had so far outside, mostly lying flat on my stomach, taking pictures of flowers and other good stuff.

Since I'm feeling newly photo-invigorated, I wanted to share these two great links with you:
• the first is for anyone with an online shop: The 5 Cs of photo styling with Kim Ludy of Trampoline on Mint design blog. Kim has a great shop full of vintage items that she photographs beautifully, with no professional training or experience. Her 5 Cs might sound familiar, but it's so worth your time to visit and remind yourself why these things are important, and how you can achieve them.
• the second is for anyone who's feeling the photo bug: Tristan at Blah, Blah, Blahg is taking us lucky readers with her as she sharpens her photo skills, giving weekly photo assignments, bringing in great guest photographers, and posting freebie photoshop brushes and masks like crazy. If you don't already subscribe to the blahg, you should definitely add it.

I'd love to hear and see where you're finding photo inspiration these days!

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Summer in New England

It's amazing what a few days in a row without rain can do for you. It can make you fall in love with your surroundings again.

Stay tuned this week for some truly gorgeous pix taken with my new (hand-me-down) Olympus DSLR. I was really reluctant to give up the ease of my old Canon digital point-and-shoot, but this new camera blows all those old comforts out of the water.

Monday, July 06, 2009


this guy is so awesome the tattoo 'artist' had to come up with a new spelling of the word!
via Petunia Face

I've been tagged by both Marichelle of Heart Handmade and RJ of Bailey Doesn't Bark. Of course, RJ tagged me months ago, so she's probably totally given up on me completing this meme, but fear not! Herewith, all you've never wondered about me :)

What's your current obsession?
Eating wild raspberries straight off the bush.

what's your weirdest obsession?
Nachos. 'nuff said, right? I mean, what a weird meal, nachos.

what are you wearing right now?
blue plaid bermuda shorts from TJ Maxx, a Calvin Klein tank top and my trusty Rafters flip flops--it's finally hot! thank god.

What’s the last thing you bought?
A case of Segura Cava (Spanish sparkling wine). Yep, that's me. I like my champagne cheap and at a case discount.

What are you listening to right now?
iTunes on shuffle--right now it's "Two" by Ryan Adams.

What’s your favorite weather?
Any weather that lets me be outside, unmolested by flying things (be it rain, snow, or bugs that are doing the flying)

What’s your most challenging goal right now?
Figuring out what I want to be when I grow up. I'm sensing that's a common challenge these days.

What do you think about the person who tagged you?
RJ and Marichelle are both super talented.... and yet, endearingly, they are both total sweethearts. I had such a fantastic time meeting them this winter, and I hope we get to hang out again soon.

The person who tagged you is coming over for dinner. What’s in the menu?
Well, I have a case of Cava (!) Perhaps a fantastic, huge salad with spinach, goat cheese, strawberries, walnuts, and a killer vinaigrette. and lots of good, local bread, maybe french baguettes.

What book are you currently reading?
Year of Wonders: A Novel of the Plague.

What is your favorite curse word?
Crap on a stick. I say it all the time. Also, shitballs.

If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you like it to be?
Hawaii. fo' sure.

What would you like to have in your hands right now?
Beach sand. From a sunny, pretty beach. Where I would like to be sitting....

What would you like to get rid of?

If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go?
Outer space.

Which language do you want to learn?
I took 8 years-----8 YEARS----of French (HS and college!), and I still managed to confuse "tampons" with "towels" in conversation the last time I was in France. I'd like to do better than that.

What super power would you like to possess?
A fast metabolism. That would be better than any super power I can think of!

What’s your favorite thing about the city you live in?
That it's not a city at all, but the pure epitome of country. Rural, baby, rural.

What’s your favorite piece of clothing in your own closet?
I have a gorgeous green silk Marc Jacobs blouse. I've worn it once. It's not terribly flattering on me. I just like having it in the closet. :)

What’s your dream job?
I want to be the person who scores Grey's Anatomy (even though I've never seen it!) with all that great music.

If you had $150 now what would you spend it on?
more plants. it's a problem. help!

Do you admire anyone’s style?
Anyone who manages to look put together and make it look effortless.

Describe your personal style.
Easy. Preppy meets country, with lots of black thrown in for the slimming.

Who’s fashion show would you want tickets to?
I'd love to go to those shows for the 3 Project Runway finalists--how cool would that be?

Who’s closet would you want to raid?
It would have to be someone who was big enough that trying on their clothes would make me feel petite in comparison (hello, I'm 5'9", cut me a break!), so clearly the only choice is Dennis Rodman. just kidding.

Now the rules of this tag:
1. Respond and rework: answer the questions on your blog, replace one question you dislike with a question of your own invention.
2. Tag other people you would love to learn more about.

So now I'd like to tag Amy, Nicole, Cindy, Suzanne, and Jennifer--come join the meme, ladies! ;)

Friday, July 03, 2009


The sun is out! The sun is out!!

Just in time for the Fourth. The weather gods must know not to f*ck with fireworks.

And, just as it seemed today couldn't get any better, Nan called from Elmer's to say I didn't have to fill in for tonight's dinner shift. Sweeeeeeeeet. So if you need me, I'll be out back with the girls.