Mighty Life List
Jan 29 2002


Me: My sister does this thing with her kids whenever they’re freaked out about something. Like my nephew will come up and say, “Mommy, I found a worm in my sandbox and it’s crawling all around. And she’ll say, Luckyyyyyy, like it’s something cool.

Him: Does it work?

Me: Yeah. The kids just get all self-satisfied and go back to what they were doing.

Him: I’m going to try that with clients. (gruff voice) The project is three weeks late. Luckyyyyyy.

5:03 p.m.

Jan 28 2002


I passed a girl with a license plate that read “JBRATTY.” It was in a Princess plate frame, and she also had one of those sparkly pink stickers on the bumper that said, 100% Fine. Oddly, there are guys who look at these glittery warning flags and think, Ha-HA! Brataay. I like em with a little spunk. I know because I’ve met them. They’re the same guys who approach me at a bar, call me sassy when I say something less stupid than they expect, then shift uncomfortably from foot to foot when I blink at them.

6:13 p.m.

Jan 25 2002


Lunching at a favorite Chinese food restaurant with a friend:

Me: This water tastes like sperm.

Her: Whaat?

Me: Yep.

Her: Are you serious?

Me: It’s not strong. I think it’s the detergent or something. Taste it.

Her: No. Way. Don’t drink that.

Me: There’s no detritus floating around or anything.

Her: Sick.

A few months later we travel to Bali together. We decide to lunch at a cafe down the street from our hotel.

Me: (Sips water, reflects.)

Her: (Sips water.)

Me: This is what I was talking about.

Her: What?

Me: Do you taste it?

Her: The sperm, you mean?

Me: Yep.

Her: Yep.

Me: It’s got to be some weird cheap-o brand of dish detergent.

Her: Let’s hope so.

2:21 p.m.


I bought a used version of The Best American Travel Writing 2000. While I was reading it this morning, someone’s old airplane-ticket stub fell out.

10:25 a.m.

Jan 24 2002


Lady 1: To be honest, it wasn�t that I didn�t find him attractive. I just didn’t think he was the type of guy who’d be attracted to me.

Lady 2: Why?

Lady 1: Well, I didn’t think he was into black girls.

Lady 3: Ah.

Lady 1: No I mean… How can I put this?

Lady 4: You don’t have to be too PC.

Lady 1: No, it’s just that Certain types of white guys are attracted to certain types of black girls. Like, there’s the guy who’s attracted to the petite, Halle Barry type of black girl

Lady 2: The white black girl.

Lady 1: Exactly. And then there’s the guys who’s attracted to the darker black girls because it’s more of a I don’t know. And then there’s the guys who just aren’t attracted to black girls. I sort of assumed he was one of those.

Lady 2: Why?

Lady 1: He just didn’t look like the type.

Lady 2: What, was he a rocker or something?

Lady 1: Actually, he looks a lot like Billy Idol.

All: OOOOOOOooooooooooooooohhhhhhhhh!

Lady 5: Like all snarly?

Lady 6: He has a beautiful set of teeth. Perfect teeth.

Lady 1: I should have brought pictures.

Lady 6: You should’ve.

Lady 5: Is he all tatted up?

Lady 1: He has some tattoos

All: OOOOOOOOOoooooooooooooooohhhhhhhhhh!

Lady 1: We hung out together, and I stayed over, and we spent Sunday morning watching football.

Lady 2: That’s commitment.

Lady 1: Yeah, you could tell I really liked him because I was doing the girly thing, like, Now, first in ten What does that mean again?

Lady 2: Awesome.

4:13 p.m.


I used to work with Kate, and I miss her. Kate loved vendor gifts. She had a favorite pen that lit up when you clicked it, a straw cowboy hat sent with some promo materials, and a red bandana with a big startup logo in the middle. One day as I passed her cube, I glanced in. She was wearing the cowboy hat and had tied the bandana around her face. Her eyes widened when she saw me. What are you doing? I asked. She bugged her eyes, held the flashing pen above her head, and whispered:

I’m a secret space cowboy.

3:14 p.m.

Jan 23 2002


Boy: Most guys think, If I could put my power drive up in her, that’d be alright.

Shiny Shirt Girl: What if he’s just not interested in doing it because he’s only 15?

Boy: Then he’s not a guy.

Shiny Shirt Girl: 15?!

Girl in Pigtails: I hate to say it, but I have to agree with George on this one.

5:15 p.m.

Jan 17 2002


While flipping through a magazine, I come across a one-panel cartoon that depicts �Afgani women�s wear� as though it were being sold at the Gap. The old woman sitting next to me on the bus points at the cartoon.

Her: I want to buy one of those.

Me: A chador?

Her: A burqa.

Me: Really?

Her: Sure. You never have to worry about how your hair looks, or if you�re getting wrinkly. You don�t have to do your nails.

Me: I suppose that’s true.

Man across from us: They never go out of style.

Her: Exactly. Exactly!

5:15 p.m.

Jan 15 2002


Man: So, how’ve you been?

Woman: Good, you?

M: Not so good, our dog is sick again.

W: Oh, no!

M: Yeah, took him to the vet and he needs back surgery.

W: Wow.

M: Yeah, he’s been limping around. He’s 12 years old, so he’s getting on. They’re only supposed to live until they’re about 14. We just spent $600 on his eye problem. Mike and I share expenses for him. This surgery is going to be $4,000.

W: Oh my gosh! What are you going to do?

M: Go ahead with it. What can we do? The vet says most people put the dog down.

W: How terrible.

M: I know! We can’t do that. We’re just trying to give her a little more time.

W: Sure.

M: If the surgery doesn’t work, we’ll try acupuncture or something.

W: They have that for doggies?

M: Oh suuuure!

5:15 p.m.