Let me tell you about my day.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Come and knock on our door...

We've been waiting for you!

Hey, did I ever tell you about the time I was talking to my brother and he said, "man, I really hate John Ritter. I wish he would die." And then John Ritter did die? Seriously. Like the next week. I've always thought that was strange. Especially because John Ritter was not necessarily related to the conversation we were having. Except we were discussing people my brother hates (his old boss and John Ritter), so I suppose it was somewhat related.

Books I have read/am reading:

Jude the Obscure
- I am reading this via dailylit.com, which I may have mentioned before because I love it so. Jude the Obscure, on the other hand, stirs up mixed feelings. On the one hand, I hate to put a book down and stop reading it (or stop opening my e-mails, in this case). On the other hand, I find Sue Bridehead unbelievably irritating. I just don't find her to be an endearing character in any way. At this point, I'm about halfway through the book. I'm hoping she and Jude either get their bone on or the story shifts away from these lackluster characters in the second half of the book. Because, really...this story is kind of lame. The best thing to come out of it so far is that I used Wikipedia to find out what a temperance hotel is (and now you can too!).

The Outsiders
- I read this yesterday (it's short) and I thought it was a decent story. It brings on those same feelings as watching documentaries about gang violence or, for that matter, West Side Story. I just end up feeling so morose over the futility of it all. I had the same kind of reaction when I read Random Family last year--you want to reach out to the people involved and make them snap out of it. Introduce them to a different reality. Unfortunately, you don't really have that option with the fictional characters. And, really, with the real ones either. The thing about The Outsiders that resonated with me (and it wasn't really the writing, because it's written like the high school essay it's supposed to be) was that a book written in 1967 is just as relevant now. Change a few fashions, a few habits, a few cars, and you have a book that could be about 2007. In fact, I checked the copyright date twice, just to be sure it wasn't something from the 80s. OK, really my intention was to talk about the books and not the descent of Western Civilization, so I'll move on.

Right now, I'm working on my backlog of Martha Stewart Livings and Cook's Illustrateds so that I can file them away with a clean conscience. I know I've mentioned it before, but I can't wait for all of my free magazine subscriptions to expire so I don't feel compelled to hold on to the magazines I'm never going to read. I can go on with my life, forever ignoring National Geographic and Nylon and stick to the hausfrau publications I love. Man, wouldn't that be a great magazine? A combination National Geographic-Nylon? It could be pygmies wearing electric blue fishnets and waifs fishing with nets off the coast of Benin. Eh?

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Taste of Nostalgia

So, my darlin' had put his foot down on Sunday regarding the purchase of delectable boxes of Girl Scout cookies. Fair enough. I mean, we're supposed to be on a diet, after all. But then I went to the grocery alone that night, and all was lost. OK, all was not lost. I bought 2 boxes (2!) of GS cookies (the tagalongs [tagalogs?] and the dulce de leche, if you must know). And I decided I would eat one of each, then bring the remainder to work.

I was so excited that I opened them in the car. And then...blah. They just weren't as good as I remember them being. Not even close. In fact, I didn't even finish my dulce de leche cookie. It just wasn't worth it. In fact, even the tagalogs (I've decided to call them this because I think it's a better name than "tagalongs.") were waxy and artificial tasting. They seemed preservative-laden and short on flavor. And those peanut butter patties are my favorite! I look forward to them all year. So, my question is: has my palate become more refined? I used to love these things--have my tastes changed in such a way that I now shy away from them? I also used to love Chips Ahoy! and Nutter Butters. Well, OK, I never really loved Nutter Butters. And I know I eat more fresh food now, so maybe I'm more sensitive to the flavors of stabilizing additives? I doubt it. I'm not a super taster or anything.

Here's my (conspiracy) theory: the quality of Girl Scout cookies has decreased, even as their price has increased. FACT: when I was a lass, GS cookies were $2.50/box. They are now $3.50/box. FACT: there are fewer cookies in each box than there were back in the 90s, when I was selling (pushing) cookies. THEORY: several cost-saving measures have been put into place, including those mentioned above, in order to increase the benefit to the Girl Scouts. Please note that I don't begrudge the scouts the paltry earnings they get from the sales. I think it's fantastic that this allows troops to go on camping trips and other excursions.

I was also thinking that maybe it was just becoming an adult and moving away from prepackaged sweets and snacks and maturing in my tastes, but adults go nuts for these cookies, too. I should also add that I had some Thin Mints last year and found them to be just as good as they always were. Thus ends my theories.

So, the real reason I'm put off by this? I would most certainly not spend $7 on prepackaged, grocery aisle cookies. I spent that much thinking that the quality of the GS cookies would make it worthwhile, but really...it wasn't. I feel ripped off.