Monday, September 30, 2013

Crash Diet

Oh, it's about that time again.

Time to dust off the running shorts and cut out the carbs.

I have a little less than two months to get into shape before the big Oxford trip.

Last year I lost somewhere close to 15 pounds right up until we flew down to Mississippi for my friend's wedding. 

There's nothing that lights a fire under my ass like knowing one of our reunions is coming up.

And mostly, I feel the need to show a few people up. And of course, make a few people jealous. And last but not least, let certain people see what they missed out on.

But that's another story for another day.

From here on out (with obvious exceptions for Beer Fest and Halloween), I'm the carb nazi.

Zumba, watch out. I'm on my way back.

After work I'm going grocery shopping for veggies and chicken.

I often forget how GOOD it feels to get skinny.

As Kate Moss once said, "nothing tastes as good as skinny feels."

Amen, sister.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Grove

If you've never been to Ole Miss for a football game, You're sincerely missing out. Everyone hates how much I talk about the Grove, but it warrants mentioning. Because for several years we were the #1 school in the country for tailgating.

On nights before the game, everyone stands around with tents and chairs and folding tables. When the clock strikes midnight, the university police begin blowing their whistles and everyone dashes into the Grove to pick out their spot. The prime spots to set up your tent are usually as close to the Walk of Champions as you can get. In the picture you can see the path carved out down the middle of the Grove, which is basically the only path in or out of this place on gameday (unless you know where you're going and you can cut down the walkways between tents until you reach the edge of the field).

Before I went to Ole Miss, I couldn't have cared less about football. I probably didn't even know what a field goal was. Now, I'm the polar opposite. After spending four and a half years at Ole Miss, I was taught better. And now, I'm probably one of the most obnoxious, die-hard Rebel fans in my group of friends. Certainly the most-so among my girl friends. But I don't care. It gives me something to love. It gives me something to obssess over. It brings me back to the school I love so much and provides me with a sense of purpose.

The experience of the Grove is extremely hard to put into words. Here's what Wikipedia has to say about it:

Described as "the Holy Grail of tailgating sites" by Sporting News, The Grove comes to life for Ole Miss Rebels football home games with as many as 25,000 fans. Fans arrive often around 12:00PM the day before the game (campus rule is no one allowed to "stake their claim" before 9:00 pm, which is strictly enforced by campus police) to grab their spot in The Grove. This usually serene area of campus becomes a sea of red, white and blue tents. Ole Miss students generally dress in their Sunday best: Men wear slacks, button-up shirts, bow ties, Sperry Top Siders, and coats while women wear cocktail dresses or brightly colored sundresses and high heel shoes. Some older fans also dress in this style.

Many tents are set up with fine kitchen ware. You'll often find lots of lace and designer doilies, fine china, chandeliers, sterling silver or silver plated candelabras and sterling silver or silver plated utensils along with chandeliers in some tents. Much of the food is laid out on table cloths in sterling silver or silver-plated servers.

The food fare often consists of hors d'oeuvres, but as with most tailgating parties, barbecue still has authority. There's also the traditional Southern food: fried chicken, pork, homemade dressings, mashed potatoes and stuffed eggs.

Every now and then, a loud voice breaks the hum of the crowd present in The Grove with the yell, "Are you READY?" This is the beginning of the Ole Miss cheer, known as "Hotty Toddy."
On cue, hundreds of fans reply, "HELLLLL YEAH! DAAAAMN RIGHT!"
Then, in unison, they begin to chant the Hotty Toddy cheer.

Spencer, one of my best friends who went to Ole Miss with me and now lives in Raleigh, and I are flying down for the Ole Miss v. Missouri game on November 23rd. Spencer's family is from St. Louis, so they plan on driving down to meet us there with a bunch of their family friends. Luckily, they plan on tailgating the whole shebang, so everything is taken care of.

I can't wait.

I'm going home.

The Single Life

Yes, I'm back so soon. I've got some time to kill, so let's touch base on my favorite subject of all time.

Online dating.

And if you haven't ever gone down that road before (which, surprisingly is becoming rare, as more and more of my friends are diving head-first into this madness), you have no idea what a shit-show this entire process has become.

The entire thing is like gardening. Before you can actually plant something and cultivate it, you have to do a hell of a lot of weeding.

The guys with severe mommy issues -- they're more common than you might think. Stay away. You're no one's babysitter.

The guys who are only out for the wrong reasons -- learn how to pinpoint them, and then run for the hills. Don't even bother going on a date with them. You'll spend all night trying to steer conversation away from sexual innuendos.

The guys who consider themselves overly attractive -- this trait is easy to spot, and something you should avoid at all costs. Never date someone prettier than you are.

The guys who want to wife you -- these guys are tricky. You get caught up in their sweet gestures and their consistent communication (imagine that.. a guy who actually calls texts you every day) and this ideal little relationship that literally seems to form overnight. It's a trap. Get out while you can.

The guys who don't know what they want -- these are the guys stuck in the twilight zone. Much like most girls my age (myself included), they're torn between their swinging single friends (think all-night keg parties and countless walks of shame) and their happily married couples (think wedding cakes, mortgages and baby strollers) with nowhere to turn.

They feel pressured to be in a relationship (psst.. your biological clock is ticking) but another part of them wants to go out and booze it downtown with their buddies and stay up all night playing video games. These guys will inevitably choose the latter, and you'll be at home alone on a Friday night with a tub of ice cream, staring at your phone incessantly, willing it to ring. And it won't.

And then there are the 'surprise red flag' guys. These are actually my favorites (purely for entertainment value) because they present themselves as perfect in every way. At first, that is.

Once you get to know them a little better, they'll eventually show you a side of themselves that you never saw coming. Porn addiction? Eleven toes? Personality disorder? Yes, the truth always rears its ugly head.

It's always fun to try and guess the 'surprise red flag' on the first date. Because you might get glimpses of it, but you can't always be sure. And hell, these guys are usually so charming, you're completely willing to go out with them on a second date. And then a third. Maybe a fourth. And then, BOOM. Red flag. Time to call it a night and flag down the first taxi home.

And the whole online dating element seems to really bring the crazies to the table. You never know what you're getting when you agree to go on a date with someone from the 'interwebs'.

The game of dating evolves into something much, much worse than the organic boy chats up girl at the bar, asks girl on date.

I can't remember the last time I went on a date with someone simply after meeting them in person. It's been at least two years. But, all the same, that relationship obviously never panned out, so what's the harm in playing the field a little bit and racking up the horror stories to tell your friends?

Actually, come to think of it, the last 'organic' date I went on (met him in a bar one night before he asked me out) was probably the worst date I've ever been on. The guy was downing shots at dinner (please, you fool.. I'm not that untolerable) and then once the check came, he happened to have 'forgotten' his wallet. So I paid, no big deal.

But this kid wanted to continue our date, by bar-hopping. At this point I realized he was a lost cause, so for the hell of it I decided a night's worth of booze was just what the doctor ordered.

So, being the gentleman that he was, we walked up to meet his friend at a bar around the corner, so that my date could "borrow some cash" to continue our date.

Turns out, he didn't so much want to "borrow" money from his friend as he wanted to sell pot to his friend in exchange for cash. A drug deal on the first date is bound to win any girl's heart.

Think that's bad? It gets worse.
So we retreated to a bar, date's drug money in hand, and he continued on with the shots.

Before long he was completely hammered, and I was barely on my second vodka drink. Needless to say, his money didn't stick around very long. After a fumbled attempt to kiss me (I'll be damned if you think I'd let that moron get anywhere near me), I decided it was time to end our date.

He proceeded to tell me he was too drunk to function. Go figure.

After I promptly responded no, he requested a ride home (he lived about twenty minutes away in North Raleigh). I obviously said no. So then he asks me if he can crash at my house, on my couch. Being the bleeding heart that I am, I let the poor jackass kid spend the night in an alleyway without a cent to his name, so I agreed.

First thing in the morning, I called him a taxi and woke him up off my couch, pushing him towards my front door and handing him a $20 bill for cab fare.

Needless to say, his later texts were greeted with silence.

Here I Go.. Again..

I guess I should start this thing out with an introduction -- I'm Molly. I live in Raleigh, NC and I've been working as a civil litigation paralegal for the past few years. I was born and raised here, but once I graduated from high school I high-tailed it to Oxford, Mississippi, where I spent 4 (or so) years loving every minute of the college life. In 2009 I graduated and moved back to Raleigh, where I've been working and living ever since. I'm an avid cooker and I'm always trying to learn new recipes (several of which I'm sure I'll be sharing here on the blog) and I also enjoy hiking, writing (obviously), photography, and traveling to new, exotic places. I'm currently single, but I'm sure I'll be sharing some dating stories on here as well, which are usually good for a laugh or two.
As for the writing component, I've started many blogs in the past, and never kept them updated.

But lately I've been reading other peoples' blogs from all different walks of life, and I've decided I want to give this thing one more try. I love the idea of sharing daily experiences, thoughts, and recollections with others, so a blog seems to be a natural choice for me. I mean, why not? If nothing else, hopefully it will help me sharpen up my writing (and photography) skills!

I'm a writer; I've always been a writer. I can't tell you how many times I've sat down and put pen to paper and let my thoughts flow. And to me, there's nothing more cathartic.

Who needs a therapist when you have the written word?

Unfortunately for my blogging tendencies, as is true for most things in my life, I'm an all-or-nothing kind of girl. I'm either writing twenty posts a day, or none at all for weeks at a time.

That seems to be a bad habit of mine. I get so consumed with one thing at one time that I can't manage to focus my energy elsewhere. And I need to get better about that.

Anyhow, I figure this thing is worth a shot. If it goes down in flames (as I'm sure it eventually will, knowing me) then no harm no foul. I just need something, if only for the moment, to keep my mind occupied and to make me feel like I'm contributing something worthwhile to.. well, the blogging world I suppose?

Here goes nothing.