I was a terrible writer in college. Every once in awhile I would come up with a snippet of a good imagery or maybe even a decent sentence, but my stories were trite and immature. Of course, at the time, I thought I was writing such deep stories about minor scandals that hadn’t already been told by every slightly damaged young woman since pens first touched paper. I reveled in my workshops and panted with excitement when my stories were read aloud. My teachers were kind, though, and were skilled enough to give me the kind of criticism that they knew I needed without crushing my spirit. Chuck Kinder and Buddy Nordan knew that someone who wants to be a writer only has to write. Achievements like publishing and accolades were secondary to the act of gathering words together, a step that scares off countless.
There was a legend among the fiction writing majors that Chuck Kinder invited a group of students over to his house for a party every year. It was a select group, though, and when someone asked me about an invitation that had obviously not been extended to both of us, I knew that I was not one of his favorites. I was disappointed in myself, but glad that I had at least had the chance to sit in the same room with him while he read my clunky words.
A professor that I work with stopped in the other day and asked if I had ever had class with Kinder. “Yes. Why?” Kinder had mentioned me in an email to this professor. The context was muddy and I’m still not sure that it actually happened. But the possibility that instructing me floated to some murky surface in his memory meant the world to me. I had written things and he had read them and he remembered me, kinda.
* * *
I rode the bus to work this morning and as the 61A chugged onto Forbes Avenue, I was struck by how much of my life had unfolded on that street. In my head, I narrated the spiel that the imaginary tour guide would give to a trolley full of my admirers.
This is the hospital where her son was born. She had a C-section and the cafeteria’s Jell-O was the best she’d ever tasted.
This is the Arby’s where she had lunch with her former co-workers after they closed down the record store they worked at. (Or “worked” at.) They choked on roast beef while laughing about all of the silly things they did inside that store, like riding the CD tower down the stairs and running after shoplifters. They never saw each other again.
This is the street where she almost lived in a cute row house during her sophomore year of college. She’s still annoyed that that living arrangement never came to fruition.
This is the Department of Health where she accompanied a dear friend to learn the results of a test.
This is the Jimmy John’s where her husband dined right after their son was born.
This is the building where she considered a choice and, sobbing, decided something else.
This used to be a night club where she spent countless hours and shed several pounds of water weight from sweating.
This is the Rite Aid where the cute girl named Jaimie worked. The boys Kelly worked with adored Jaimie and would visit her at work to serenade her with Weezer songs.
This is where the record store that Kelly worked at used to be. It’s a Qdoba now.
This is where another record store used to be. Kelly made many of her lifelong friends within its walls.
This used to be the Beehive. Kelly started frequenting that establishment in high school when she legally shouldn’t have been.
This is the wall in front of the law school where Kelly and her husband sat a few times and made fun of pigeons.
This is the cafe where they spent an afternoon drinking ridiculously huge fruity drinks adorned with candy necklaces, getting sickeningly drunk and giggling and falling in love.
This is the library that is cool on hot days and echoes in the best way possible. You really must stand inside and breathe it in. Kelly has a picture of her husband holding their young son in front of the dinosaur on a pretty spring day.
And all of this pavement is a little bit flatter because of her.
I always look forward to the break that we get from school and work at the end of the year. Nothing all year tops the nearly two weeks that I get to spend mostly at home and with my family. This year, I literally can’t wait. These last few days of the regular routine are excruciating, because I can’t wait to be away from the world for awhile. I need so badly to be in my house with my husband and my son, to see them, to touch them, to reassure myself that, yes, they are here. Yes, they are real.
This is all exacerbated and made more raw by the shooting last week. I still don’t feel as if I’ve come back to a normal thought process since it happened. I still cry a few times a day, quietly and quickly, trying to make sure no one notices. This tragedy has affected all of us, of course, but it’s not mine. I don’t have to live the rest of my life with it as part of my story. Jonna did an excellent job articulating a lot of this.
I also get frustrated with the small actions that we’re encouraged to take: hug your kids tighter, tell them you love them, never take one moment for granted. Yes, of course I will but what about tomorrow? My hugs aren’t bulletproof and my love won’t make this go away. Please fucking tell me that we’re not going to try to just kiss this hurt away because it’s not fucking enough.
* * *
Yesterday, during some polite chatter over lunch, a few people asked me if the kid still believed in Santa Claus. I replied honestly: “He’s on the fence.” I never formally renounced Santa Claus, which isn’t to say that I think that a man literally performs all of those legendary actions. But I do notice (or perceive) a shift at this time of year that seems to be It. He’s asked me a few times if Santa Claus is real. I’ve always asked back, “What do you think?” and he has always replied, “Kinda. Some of the kids at my school don’t think he’s real.”
“The kids at your school are no older than you and they are definitely not any wiser.”
* * *
The other night, after we got our tree up and decorated, we did what we always do and turned off all of lights so that we could see the tree in all of its glory. The three of us cuddled together on the couch and stared up at our handiwork. We lingered a little longer than I think we ever have. It’s so confusing to be this excited at this time of year while also feeling so desperate.
I had a nightmare last night that was obviously my brain working out some of the bigger tangles of my thoughts about Sandy Hook. It was a bizarre but terrifying journey to the darkest depths of possibility, where I did what was awful but necessary, apparently: feel for a second in a hypothetical reality what those parents are feeling. I woke up hating myself for it. I shouldn’t get to entertain those thoughts when others have to endure that living nightmare forever. And who am I to think that I could possibly imagine what they’re feeling? I hate everything about this so much. Even the good moments that come out of it seem to make me sadder ultimately.
* * *
Something that has always always made me tear up is, “Yes, Virginia, There Is a Santa Claus.” I think when I was a kid it was comforting to read something so kindly authoritative about something that can be kind of scary when you’re little. Now I love the sentiment and I love the idea of a busy grown-up taking the time to find just the right thing to say to a young reader. Coping with this particular unimaginable fear and sadness at this time of year, it suddenly seems much more poignant and necessary (and makes me sob). It’s comforting to read those words and feel them stretching across time because we now have to figure out how to explain to our children that the intangible things that make life worth living are still very much around, even though we let all of the bad things in far too often, that we still care about them and keep them safe and help them when they’re scared because otherwise the, “eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.”
I used to blog on LiveJournal and I would post there every single day, often multiple times a day. This was before Twitter or Facebook, where I could deposit brief thoughts and this was also before I had a job or the life that I have now. I was a young mom and my days were very baby-centric, revolving around naps and nursing and diapers. In between those shifts I would write and think and write. I would offer up my thoughts on almost everything and very few world events passed without my input.
Now, I don’t feel comfortable expressing my feelings about huge events that much. I quickly grow weary of hearing everyone else’s opinions and then don’t wish to add my voice. Now it’s so frustrating to watch the dialogue degenerate from the communal shock and grief, to outrage, to the various factions of outrage, to the bitterness over how no one is saying anything right anymore.
Get rid of guns!
No! We need guns and 2nd Amendment and this poorly drawn analogy!
We need better access to mental health resources!
I’m not paying for some monster to talk about his feelings!
Illness is illness, why must you categorize it as mental?
Not enough religion!
I don’t want to say anything because it will inevitably be the wrong thing according to someone. And unfortunately I don’t think that any real changes will come from this, still, because of that fear. Because we continue to allow a flawed set of ideals dominate. We won’t try something new (just try!) because a bunch of people don’t want to. I guess that’s freedom. But I hope that the folks who will fight to keep guns in our hands and money out of our healthcare and pollution in our environment are right about their, “everything will be fine if we change nothing,” approach. I honestly do. Since we won’t take a chance on trying something different, I hope that they’re right. But honestly I don’t think that they are.
The scariest part was how often the word “normal” popped up in my thoughts and words surrounding this latest glimpse of hell.
I said “usually” but I started to write “normally.” “I’m normally pretty stoic when a bunch of kids get killed.” Because this is normal now. It’s not everyday, not on this scale, but it’s normal.
I’m not so naive that I think at some point we’ll become totally peaceful and horrible things will cease to happen. And I’ve had to adopt some kind of rational outlook about that. I can’t exist in a bubble because bad things happen and I have no way of knowing whether one will happen to me or someone I love. But please could we at least try to get to a point where we can no longer gauge our reactions to the latest mass shooting? Could we try getting rid of guns? Could we try putting our money toward each other’s health and wellbeing? Just try? And if it’s a failure we’ll go back?
I asked the kid if he had any questions or wanted to talk about it. He just kind of shrugged and said that it was really sad. I told him that I wasn’t sure how to relate to his perspective since stuff like that didn’t happen when I was a kid and that was only 20 years ago so I don’t know how and what kind of scary it is for him. But I think he sees it something that happens sometimes. And that gave me chills.
Hey buddy! Today is your 11th birthday! Every year it gets harder and harder for me to believe how big you’re getting. This past year, especially, you’ve turned on to so many cool things and experiences. You’re playing a bunch of different sports, listening to all kinds of great music, getting good at chess, and developing your artistic interests by doing stuff like joining Shakespeare Club at school, which just makes my English heart go pitter-patter. Eventually, of course, you’ll probably need/want to pare down and focus your time and energy on just a few activities. But for now you have the opportunity to just basically try everything. Might as well, right? There are limitless interests to devote yourself to. You’ve really grabbed life and sucked the marrow out of it. Never, ever, ever stop doing that. (Plus, marrow is really tasty.)
I realized the past few months that I don’t chronicle your life the way I used to, and that made me a little sad because I only need to search through my archives to find the details of most of your first decade. The minutiae that you will never remember were all historic events for me and I can recall them with ease. But your life is just that now…yours. You move through days and nights independently and my role is basically tech support (though the absolute most enthusiastic tech support ever). Seeing you become an aware citizen of the world is just the coolest thing to witness and I want to tell everyone about it all the time because you blow my mind constantly. But my time as author of your tale has mostly ended and you get to pick up at the ellipsis that I left for you.
I don’t think you’ll ever get me to completely stop writing about you, though, since you are the gift to poets and warriors and songwriters and astronauts and anyone else who gets a glimpse of the beyond.
When I first started writing about us, we looked like this:
And now you look like this:
And I look like this:
And “us” is now “You. And me.” And it’s awesome.
The other night, I had had a bad day and told you that I might need some hugs because daddy had to go play a gig. After I declared it boob tube night and we ate our dinner while watching some cartoons, you popped up off of the couch and cleared our dishes way. You then returned with two cups of eggnog and put National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation on. You might not remember that night when you get older and I might forget some of it too until I happily stumble upon this old post. But kiddo that was one of the best nights ever and I felt so much better.
I am on some like anti-NaBloPoMo business. I am, however, doing a photo-a-day “challenge” (sarcastic air-quotes because it’s not like it’s a triathlon or something) over on yon InstaGram, which I’ve recently become addicted to because oh, hello, 2010. Nice of you to show up.
Backing up just a bit, I would like to inform all of you that I am now 34 years old as of October 31st and am now very mature.
Also on October 31st was Halloween, which was kind of anti-climactic since trick-or-treating was postponed. But having it on Saturday was kind of nice since I didn’t have to rush home from work. My kid went as D.M.C. from Run D.M.C., which a few people actually got, despite the fact that he needs to work on his ability to look hard.
Hurricane Sandy is having the side effect of extending Halloween. The city has postponed trick-or-treating to Saturday evening. I can’t say that I’m upset, since I really like Halloween and am happy to be able to fit a few more specific activities in while it’s still technically the season. We haven’t watched many scary movies and our pumpkins are still waiting to be hacked and anthropomorphized. This past Saturday, our neighborhood had the annual parade and the baby debuted his D.M.C. from RUN D.M.C. costume.
He obviously needs to work on his intimidation skills.
Unfortunately, he didn’t win any prizes for his costume. I think it was just too obscure (*coughhipstercough*).
Friday evening, while the baby was at his piano lesson, the husband and I plopped on the couch to unwind. I turned on the TV and was pumped to see that Teen Witch was on. You would think that after nearly 12 years together, there wouldn’t be much that would surprise me about the husband. But I was shocked to learn that he had never seen this masterpiece. But I guess it kind of made sense since, thinking back, all of the girls in my class were always obsessed with that movie and how absurd it was, while all of the boys were fairly ignorant of its existence. I guess something called Teen Witch doesn’t really appeal to boys in their early adolescence? Weird.
At first, the husband was pretty dismissive, but I advised him that he needed to treat this event like the paradigm shift that is. Life can be broken up into to two periods: before Teen Witch and after Teen Witch. There’s just so much wonderful in that movie. Like, where does Louise even find those frumpy clothes to begin with? Why is her little brother…like that? Oh, holy wow, the inappropriate harassment from her English teacher? How Brad is just not quite Tom Cruise but tries so hard to squeeze it out of himself? Remembering how most of the girls gave the side-eye to Louise and Brad’s trip to the abandoned house? NO red flags, Louise? None? And why the hell would you ever take your shoes off in a place like that? The quintessential synchronized dance sequence at the prom? And the kind of completely amazing original soundtrack? And how watching it now I think the whole thing is actually just a metaphor (of course) for teenage drinking and/or drug use?
As we were watching it, I said, “There’s this scene…I can’t remember if it already happened or not. No…wait…here it is. Just so you know? This is the greatest thing ever.” And if you’re familiar with Teen Witch, I think you know that I’m referring to this:
After that final, “Top THAT,” from Polly, the husband and I sat in silence for a moment before he finally whispered, “That was awesome.” Halloween truly is the most magical time of the year.
My kid is a source of many wonderful quotes that range from adorable naivety to developing wisdom to just plain adorable and entertaining. In the past 24 hours, he’s had two that I need to document so that I don’t ever forget them.
The husband’s band was featured in the Tribune-Review on Sunday, so we had a couple copies on the dining room table. Last night, while the baby was doing his homework, he called out to us, “Hey, some guy is planning a comeback in Afghanistan?” The husband and I were both silent for a minute, trying to figure out what he could possibly mean. “What are you talking about, dude?” we asked. “It says here in this newspaper that some guy named Al…Kuh-eee-duh? Is doing something in Afghanistan.”
You know, that guy Al. Al Qaeda. (Note to self: brush up on current events.)
This morning, on the way to the bus stop, the baby and I were talking about the basketball team that he just joined at school. He was excitedly chattering away about the PE teacher who coaches them. “He’ll do this thing where he announces the starting lineup just like at a real basketball game. When I came out, he said, ‘AT 4 FOOT 9, FROM THE BRONX…!’” I chuckled, and the baby continued, “Pfft…I’m barely 4 foot 8!”
This past weekend was similarly excellent, though not because of all of the events going on, but because of the lack of them. For the first time in many weeks, the husband, the baby, and I got to be together from Friday evening all the way to Monday morning.
While the baby was at his piano lesson Friday after school, the husband and I went on a little date to Fuel & Fuddle. We met up with the baby and my mom afterward and then headed to Squirrel Hill to see Samsara, a documentary that I’ve been anticipating for years. I had told the baby going in that this was a different kind of movie: there wasn’t any dialogue or a story, per se, just images of life and the world for the purpose of giving you something to think about.
He did have a few questions of the, “Where is that? Why are they doing that?” variety during the movie and I tried to get him to save them until after. A film that quiet and atmospheric needs a similarly serene and receptive audience. Overall, however, he handled it amazingly well and even had some really interesting thoughts afterward.
(The fact that a 10-year-old was able to experience it that way should have made the grown people sitting behind us feel that much dumber for talking the whole time and drunkenly getting up and falling down several times. If you’re over the age of say, 15, and you can’t sit still and contemplate life for at least a little bit, you need to just put your eatin’ dress on and stay in the house. We have shit to do out here.)
During our furious discussion of the movie afterward via iMessage, Frank had told me that he felt very grim after seeing it. I can see why, there were some very unpleasant things portrayed. But even the shots of landfills and meat factories didn’t upset me the way that they might normally. I just kept seeing images of chaos and our sometimes precious attempts to impose order on it. It made me feel very serene, like nothing that is happening is somehow surprising or out of turn. Not that we should take that as a reason to be uncaring or cold or seek change where it is needed. But that familiar panic that ordinarily wells up inside of me when I think about all that there is to think about didn’t show up. And it can stay gone, for all I care.
I think this moment is really what did it for me:
Who knows the story of his life and his tattoos? But it seems safe to assume that some chaos, good or bad, led him to mark his body, his method of asserting control where he could. But none of that is relevant here, as he nuzzles his infant daughter. She softly touches his face as the world suddenly becomes very small, a population of 7 billion reduced to 2 in a moment that is repeated over and over again everywhere.
The absence of Big Exciting Things to do this weekend meant that my world got to be wonderfully small for a few days. On Saturday, we went to Trax Farm to re-up on our decorative gourds (motherfuckers). The baby tried to tell us that he was too old for that stuff and after I pieced together the shards of my shattered heart upon hearing of this omen of adolescence, I pushed him into the car with the promise of, “FAMILY TOGETHERNESS AND FUN TIMES GODDAMMIT!” But after we drove past all of the pretty foliage and once we got there and that unmistakeable potpourri of kettle corn and animal poo hit him, he warmed right up.
Adopting Captain Morgan poses on pumpkins and whatnot.
Earlier in the week, he came up to me and said, “Want to do something together this weekend?” And then I died. He does a ton of stuff with seemingly everyone else in his life, while he and I seem to have a strictly business relationship sometimes. Of course, we have moments of enjoying each other’s company, but I realized that very rarely do he and I ever do anything just the two of us. I was trying to think of something to do and we kept shooting down each other’s suggestions. I thought about trying to find a cooking class, since he often wants to help me cook which is hard to do in our tiny kitchen, but I couldn’t seem to find any that were for kids and parents. Finally, I said, “Do you want to cook something together?” He liked that idea and it seemed like the least stress-inducing option. We wouldn’t have to go anywhere or spend any money, and he had an eye on a recipe for mini deep dish pizzas.
So, yesterday I set everything out for us and let him do mostly everything, only helping when he asked me to. “This is so much fun!” he said. And it really was. Plus, those little pizzas were so good. He also helped me to make some applesauce from the bushel of apples that we brought home, which was especially exciting since he got to use the cool apple peeler.
Today, the world is its usual size and its attempts to bring order to everything seem so silly. I can’t wait to get back to my cozy little microcosm.
The husband and I are at an age where we’re attending weddings fairly regularly. We had three this year and have at least one on deck next year. I can’t say that I’m too irritated about it. I really like weddings. In general, everyone is high off of the love fumes of the event and has a great time.
Of course, such blessed events are always so much more special when the marrying couple is dear to your heart. On Saturday, one of the husband’s bandmates, Preslav, married his long-time girlfriend Erin, and we were on hand to witness the union.
An interesting fact about the husband’s band is that all three members have been with their significant others for 12 years and all three initially got together with said significant others within six months of each other in 2000. The husband and I got married in 2006. Adam and Emily got married in 2009. We were thrilled when Preslav and Erin announced last year that they were finally going to make it official in 2012.
Pittsburgh Track Authority: the luckiest guys alive since 2000.
While the husband and I have known Preslav and Adam since Jesus was a boy, the better halves hadn’t had much opportunity to get to know each other until Pittsburgh Track Authority really started to take shape. Then Emily, Erin, and I had a chance to interact more often. We had the common bond of being in long (LONG) term relationships from a fairly young age and supporting in every possible way our respective dudes through their musical odysseys. Getting to know all of them better made me realize that this little group of people was pretty special. Musically, I think they’re on the edge of something big. Personally, it’s always so cool to realize that you’ve stumbled upon some folks who get you in ways that you didn’t even know you needed to be understood.
The husband and I arrived at the Mattress Factory about a half hour before everything was supposed to begin bearing a speaker for the DJ and cookies for the reception. We mingled for a bit before finding our seats. The place looked amazing and as the ceremony began I was blown away by how beautiful everything was. Preslav and Erin were gorgeous and their actual ceremony was short enough that I didn’t get a chance to start sobbing inappropriately like I usually do. I watched these two soulmates promise themselves to each other and grinned at how nervously excited they were. Preslav fidgeted with Erin’s hands and Erin let a few tears escape.
The reception was just one of the best I’ve been to. Everything was so relaxed and just felt like a really special party. Preslav and I noted that everyone looked so nice and I commented that it was probably one of the best looking weddings I’ve seen. Our friend Jim was DJing and he’s especially skilled at knowing just what to play. It was so refreshing to be amongst a group of people who weren’t nervous or shy about dancing, but who were just happy to be there celebrating this wonderful event. Dance music nerds have the most fun always.
The cops came by several times to warn us about the noise but I was glad that the music was loud enough to drown out the fact that I was singing along to everything, especially when Jim played one of my favorite songs ever:
I would never claim to be wise about love and relationships. Each one is so different and has its own unique set of challenges that it’s impossible to even glimpse the contents of anyone else’s heart. But I know what it is to be in the presence of the real thing. I can often step away and see it in the husband and I, and I could definitely feel it all around us on Saturday. If I had to take a guess, I’d say that the secret to making love work is to grab that moment and never let go of it, allow it to always be present in plenty and in want, in sickness and health, in good times and bad. If you follow that, you can never go wrong.
Right after Erin and Preslav were presented for the first time as husband and wife, Preslav fumbled for a second and asked Erin which way they were going. Erin replied, “Straight ahead.” We all laughed at the cute blunder. But to me it was the perfect way to take their first married steps.
Straight ahead. And if you get lost, just ask the amazing person walking right beside you.
Congratulations Erin and Preslav, October 13, 2012
This weekend was so great. So, so great. So great that I’m not even that bitter that I don’t have off of work today like seemingly everyone else.
As I mentioned on Friday, we were going to be attending the VIA festival. I was worried that we were going to be too tired to rally for all of the events, but it turned out that we had almost non-stop fun for nearly three days.
I was late to the dance workshop at the Shadow Lounge on Friday because I had to take the bus over after work. Even though I left my office a few minutes early, the bus was late and I wandered in when there was only under an hour left. But I got to see the husband, the baby, and the sister-in-law, who was in town for the festival, work on their footwork.
I joined in for a bit and felt pretty confident about my new dance skills until Manny, one of the guys leading the workshop, came into the center of the floor to demonstrate what footwork looks like when done well and at full speed.
It was, um, humbling.
We hit up Buffalo Blues for (a somewhat disappointing) dinner before heading back out to see a pop-up arcade. This was a raw, storefront space that had been taken over by Babycastles. The baby got a huge kick out of it and it was cool to see people creating their own video games right then and there. The baby lamented that I don’t let him play games like Call of Duty and such. I consider myself very liberal in what I expose him to via media (read: if you’ve written an indignant blog post about parents taking their kid to an R-rated movie, I was probably the object of your outrage), but there are a few things that I’m just not comfortable with, and some of the first-person shooter games creep me out. When he’s still kind of little and sweet, I just can’t take watching him pretend to be a hardcore assassin. But the pop-up arcade was inspiring because he got to see people making fun games that weren’t whatever is most heavily marketed. Got a fun idea for a game? Make it! Don’t wait for someone to sell it to you.
I could tell that the baby was really happy to be out doing stuff like this with us. He’s intrigued by the fact that we regularly go out to hear music and stay out very late and I hope that his desire to someday do that with us remains intact until he is old enough to do so. In the meantime, he was off to spend the night at my mother-in-law’s house. As we put him in the car, he very sweetly called out to us, “Have fun at VIA!” Ugh, he’s amazing. And the VIA folks need to make that into a commercial.
The musical acts that night were going to be in the old PNC Bank in East Liberty. Zuzuka Ponderosa was great, but we were all pretty unimpressed with SSION. Things reached some kind of weirdness apex when none other than Girl Talk took the stage wearing a Steelers uniform. He played some noise for about 10 minutes tops while some seizure-inducing strobe lights kept up. People in masks handed out and threw Arby’s roast beef sandwiches to the crowd before a confetti blast went out. It was bizarre.
Tiger & Woods got us interested again, though, and Spinn and Rashad took things to a frantic level of fun. I was completely drenched in sweat from dancing so hard. We headed over to the after party to hear Santiago Salazar. We were dancing until 4:30 in the morning. When we finally left, the temperature had dropped at least 20 degrees and it had started to rain. So Pittsburgh. So lovely.
The next night was the highly anticipated performance by Moodymann, who is one of our favorites from Detroit. Nearly all of our friends were out, which made it that much more special.
The hotties from Pittsburgh Track Authority. I’m partial to the one in the middle.
Moodymann played hot and sexy and fun house music and displayed his legendarily bizarre personality, taking the opportunity to talk briefly about the Steelers and hand out cups of Hennessy to the crowd.
He was sitting over near the door when things were wrapping up and I had to go and tell him how much fun I’d had during his set. He appreciated my tshirt, which was from the roller rink in Detroit where he throws a skating party during the festival there. While he chatted with the sister-in-law, I talked to his daughter, who was one of the sweetest girls ever.
One more after party, before we dragged our selves back home at the relatively reasonable hour of 3:30.
Something to add to your list of universal truths? Pizza, even a weird hipster Domino’s pizza, tastes amazing at that hour.
I love that I danced my butt off to musicians from all over the world in old banks and odd little speakeasy-type places and then found myself chomping on nachos at a Steelers game less than 12 hours later.
The sister-in-law and I, wearing a combined total of 57 shirts, 8 pairs of pants, 20 pairs of socks, and three Terrible Towels.