330: pruning

"There he is, Mr. New Year . . ."
Originally uploaded by missjasmine.

12/29/04: Kevin was making stroganoff for Maria, so I basically invited myself over. And though Maria was dog-tired, she finished her supper *and* told me all about her recent trip to South Africa. She spent a week building houses with Habitat for Humanity, and we were both in tears when she got to the part about the new homeowners dancing and singing then, waving their house keys in the air as a tent of hundreds of staffers, volunteers, and aspiring homeowners sang and danced with them. I told Darren about this a few days later and we made a pact to join a build somewhere in the US later this year if they’ll have us.

12/31/04: Not only did I have to work on New Year’s Eve, but I had to work late. Actually, it wasn’t bad. It was fine, a quiet day as the markets closed early. So I worked on not ruining my manicure (chip-free until yesterday, thank you very much) and trying to rest as much as possible as one can at work without being completely unproductive. When I left work, I hauled ass to the Jewel where the liquor aisles were crowded with shaggy-haired post-college types lugging cases of MGD. Middle-aged mothers to small children nudged baskets of Alize and Mudslide mix along the floor. Traffic on Milwaukee was heavy, but not snarled, so I splurged on a taxi home. Hung out for a few hours, put on some eye makeup, then Kevin and I drove up to Jalissa and Thomas’s apartment for her surprise birthday party.

Their apartment is the second floor of a graystone, with lovely exposed brick walls, and a dishwasher, and a washer/dryer. I am forever having apartment envy over other people’s places, and this evening was no different. I forgot the ice and the lime juice, so Joe went back out to get supplies. Jacinda set out cups, heated snacks in the oven. I put cases of beer on the back porch to chill, and looked out for the cats. There were noisemakers and ‘Happy New Year!’ tiaras out for people to wear. Everybody was in place when Jalissa and Thomas made it back from the movies, and I think she was surprised. Once the surprise was over, we all got back to the business of drinking, smoking, eating, dancing, and cursing. Dan even cut off the spirals in his beard, the spirals that had been driving Jacinda crazy ever since last year. I stayed up with the sisters Bauman, their respective men, and Darren until 4am, when I called for a cab that never came. I found that there were scads of taxis on Fullerton, so unusual for Logan Square, so I was home in mere moments.

1/1/05: Kathy’s house. Kevin and I are the first guests to arrive for Kathy’s annual New Year’s Day get-together. While Kathy starts the hopping john and greens, Kevin and I get ourselves something to drink and we all watch “The Office” Christmas special. Kathy’s mom arrives, and she is lovely. We mind our manners and our language, and eat. Adrienne and Thom arrive, and we all watch some television and chat and talk. Tony and Tasneem arrive with rice to go with the chicken I’m making, and with Krispy Kremes. Rounding out the guest list is Jorge, whose arrival inspired us all to cheer, as we have not seen him in so long. Once Jorge arrived, we could get down to the business of some serious smack-talking in the guise of playing board games. We started with the pop culture DVD edition of Trivial Pursuit, and Adrienne and I kicked arse. Which, I think, is fine, but it only revealed to all how much of a geek I am. I mean, why do I even know the name of John Stamos’s fictional band on “Full House”? I don’t even like that damn show.

The games didn’t turn too vicious, at least not until we started playing Uno around 5. A few folks had to leave early, which did little to reduce the amount of yang talked at the table. When we weren’t talking about yang, we were talking about public schools, baby names, college tuition. I guess this was practice for when we have kids. Correction, for when my friends have kids and I begin my second life as a fabulous spinster godmother/auntie. Kathy finally kicked us all out at midnight, so Kevin and I stopped at Jen’s party. I got to talk to Sienna, and Jeff, and Foster, but mostly I found myself distracted by the hordes of really young kids stumbling around Jen’s apartment. When I say really young kid, I mean like 21 or 22. They’d almost drop glasses, or make out in Jen’s bedroom, where I found Kevin surfing the web on Jen’s laptop to avoid the knuckleheads. To be fair, Jen didn’t know these folks. Nobody seemed to, though they did seem to be everywhere all at once.


“Hi, my name is Jill. I just want to say thanks to Kanye’s workout plan. I was able to pull a NBA player and like now I shop every day on Rodeo Drive. I just want to say, thank you Kanye! Woo woo woo!”

Britney Spears feat. Madonna – Me Against the Music; Kanye West – The New Workout Plan; Stereophonics – Don’t Let Me Down

<a href=”http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/customs/Xmas/twelfth.htm#twelfth”http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/customs/Xmas/twelfth.htm#twelfth


~ by Jasmine on January 4, 2005.

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