Monday, June 29, 2009

It's all Greek to Me...

Once upon a time there was this girl who attended Loyola. She liked to write awful things about the Greek life at Loyola. I (along with all my Greek brethren) was offended by her columns. I chose to write back.

I'm re posting the articles and my letters to the editor. Enjoy.

Individuals achieve greater good

by: Dzifa Job
It is spring and many have rushed and more still have pledged their time, energy, and a great deal of money to particular organizations. Classification has become so natural to us that we willingly band ourselves together into cliques to make such a process easier without ever asking why. We adorn ourselves with sweatshirts claiming that we are a critically thinking university, yet we never question the inner workings behind the events around us, and the part we play in perpetuating them.
Why do so many of our young men and women willingly align themselves to groups that have no defined purpose? Why does an institution of such caliber have bands of people parading themselves under such pseudonyms as "pretty girls" and "sporty girls" in assorted colors, transforming this campus into a mini tribal society.
Tribal societies never end well. Think of the conflicts in Rwanda/Burundi or between Serbs and Croatians. These were people who looked exactly alike yet chose to divide themselves along lines that most Westerners would find ludicrous. Never mind the fact that we make similar distinctions without questioning why we feel the need to do so. Indeed, it is because we refuse to question ourselves that so many blindly walk down these multi-colored pathways.
I say blindly, because it is a rare case when one can find a seasoned veteran or one of the newly converted who can give clear reasons as to why they embarked on this journey in the first place.
However, if these organizations do indeed allow some within our midst to fulfill goals that they cannot achieve on their own, I dare say that all this division does more harm than good. None would disagree when Martin Luther said that we are all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny.
If it is indeed lasting change that we desire as a reward for our service, it will not happen by chance. Lasting change can only be effected by a group of determined individuals, united by a common purpose, which is clearly delineated. If service to all of mankind is indeed our aim, why, then, should we feel the need to exclude others from the process either on the basis of race, sex or lack of the necessary financial resources.
So too, if some organizations cater to the Epicureans at heart-people who will forever be more excited by the thought of young pledges giving lap dances than finding some way to help abused children should band together and have one big orgy every now and then and be done with it. Think of how much further each of these groups with common purposes would go if they were united. They could charge the same amount of fees and contribute more to the surrounding communities, or consume not only beer but their choice of fine liquor at their frequent orgies.
If we believe that as long as our minds are enslaved then we are not truly free, then we must shake off the colors that enslave us and embrace each other as a true community. Thinking not only of what drives us as individuals but of more effective ways to achieve the greater goods we all desire.

Greek Life is more than "Orgies"

I am writing in response to Dzifa Job's Jan. 30 column concerning Greek life.
As a freshman, I joined a Greek organization. My goal? To have fun and make friends. Shockingly, it wasn't to give lap dances or attend orgies, as Ms. Job believes it is. In my career as a Greek, I have never attended an orgy; this isn't Animal House, it's Loyola.
I found fun, friendship, and more. When I became a Greek, I became a part of a community. The National Panhellenic Council and the Interfraternal Council, two governing bodies for all Greeks, have councils consisting of delegates from every Greek organization and is very united.
Ms. Job claimed that Greeks lack "defined purpose." Philanthropy is a defined purpose. Greeks raise money for different organizations and support each other. You can find someone from every Greek organization at Gamma Phi's Softball Tournament, Theta Phi's Grass Volleyball Tournament, Alpha Chi's "Take back the Night," and Delta Gamma's Ultimate Frisbee Tournament. Greeks unite during Greek Week to raise money. Past benefactors include Pediatric Aids and the Red Cross. They were happy to receive thousands of dollars we collectively raised.
Ms. Job gave the suggestion that we disband and become one organization with one goal. She suggested that we shed our multicolored shirts and the "mini-tribe" mindset. To counter her suggestion, I only need one word: pride. When we don our shirts, we do so with an enormous amount of pride - pride in knowing we are part of a group of people who share our ideals and strive for the same goals we strive for.
Finally, we are not clubs. Not everyone can meet the standards necessary to achieve the goals set by Greeks. Ms. Job said, however, that Greek organizations are exclusive on the basis of race, gender, and financial status; I will address these issues.
The issue of race is moot, as I am a minority and a Greek. The issue of gender also is irrelevant, as there are organizations that both men and women can join. Finally concerning the issues of financial status; these organizations require money to operate. Dues are nothing to be ashamed of, but rather Greeks proudly pay dues, because they know that they fund the interests that they have dedicated themselves to.
Greeks share a pride in knowing they are members of groups that promote high ideals and yet are united in promoting the Greek purpose.
~ Tina Cordova, Political science junior

Organizations that promote cruelty deserve punishment
Dzifa Job

Kipling once said "the female of the species is more deadly than the male" and in light of the accusations brought against members of Tri Phi, I do protest that these things are true.
In the games of cruelty, the brutal physical punishments boys can inflict always rank far second to the torturous mind games females are capable of playing.
Females are socialized to want to belong. An entire generation grew up reading "Sweet Valley Kids" and "Sweet Valley High" thinking what a wondrous thing it would be to have their girls there to protect them. People one could whine to when the world seemed to be against you - those with whom one could share the common fears of cellulite and abandonment over late night snacks.
That is the beauty of girlfriends, but alas, I think the price of belonging to any all-girl exclusive group comes at too high of a price.
Maybe I am jaded because I attended an all-girl high school and experienced firsthand how cruel girls can be.
It is the all-consuming fear that you will be excluded from all the coolest things, punished by the all-knowing eyes, which watch you but you cannot see. Your social life will be doomed to become that of a deracinated foreigner. Such an emotional strain is something that few can manage to cast asunder.
So when the fear of this is coupled with physical torture, I find it impossible to believe that the subjected individual is expected to pass muster.
Organizations that encourage such torture should not only be illegal on college campuses, but they should also be outlawed in the whole of modern society.
Or have we as a people decided to devolve into the wilds of prehistoric time with diabolic creations of a modern mind?

Sororities More than "All Girl Exclusive Group"
I am writing in response to the article published April 6 by Dzifa Job. It seems to me that Job has a very jaded opinion of not only the Tri Phis but also of Greek life in general. I would like to point out that Loyola sororities do not haze their members in any way or form.
Hazing includes mental hazing, that is taunting the girls or subjecting them to name-calling. Therefore, I am confused as to which "mind games" Job refers. She says, "The price of belonging to an all girls exclusive group comes at too high a price." I can think of many instances where this is not the case: all-girls high schools, all-girls athletic teams and the sorority community on Loyola's campus.
All the sororities have mottos that seek to enhance the very essence of womanhood. Their goal is to promote higher standards and ideals for women.
We can also see through the leadership positions that are held on this campus that sororities are doing their job. Many prominent campus leaders are members of sororities, and in no way are they playing the mind games that Job accuses them of playing. Rather, they strive to improve themselves and Loyola's campus.
While it is true that members of sororities may not always get along, this does not mean that they are cruel to each other. The members of sororities are sisters. This is a term that we do not use lightly. We are all bonded together by the ritual that we share and through the experiences that bring us together. Just as you don't always get along with your biological siblings, the same applies to sorority sisters. You know that they are always there for you; they comfort you in your time of need and share in your joys. I know that Job has a skewed vision, but perhaps upon closer inspection she would discover that sororities are more than an "all girl exclusive group" but a sisterhood of women.
~ Tina Cordova, political science junior

Around Town
NRA Range

Have you ever been?
It's a blast. One hour will set you back $14, unless you're a member, then it's $8. Membership is $10 and you have to pass a test.
It's a blast (pun intended).

From the Foodie in Me

Appetizer Idea:
Prosciutto and Hearts of palm.
Prosciutto is like bacon, only fancier. Hearts of palm are sort of like artichoke, only much saltier.
Wrap the prosciutto around the hearts of palm, it's a huge appetizer hit.

Grinds My Gears

Slow Walking People
OMG! Seriously, either walk faster, or stay tot he right as you walk. It's not rocket science, it's walking.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Bom Chicka Wha Wha

My headline has nothing to do with anything. I just needed a headline.


So, I think I might be a judgey person. I know this person who writes a blog, and for the life of me I didn't get why I read it. Finally hit me, in comparison to him, my life is awesome.
I don't live at home with my parents and hang out with them all the time, and I'm not living in the same town I grew up and went to college in. I think this might make me a bad person, but I'm not sure.
Sign two that I might be a judgey person is that my mom and dad are always calling me a snob. They say I'm mean to other people. Is it wrong to not want to be friends with people who didn't go to college?
Sign three, I was walking down the street yesterday and I see this girl walk out of a building. She is a very pretty girl, and super curvy. She definitely had a J-Lo butt going on, but in a good way. She was wearing a nice black fitted suit, high fives all around. Until she turned around. There was this white lace up thing going on directly up her butt seam. It was the equivalent of fishnets. Now here is the question... should I have even been noticing this?

Yeah, I'm probably too judge-y.

Email Hilarity

To: Whitham
Hey, I totes need a faves from you. I am borrowing Rachel's tent from her and I know ya'll are driving to some wedding together. Could you plz bring the tent back to Arlington with you? Thanks, Tina

To Tina:
Translate into the Queen's English, then resubmit.

To Whitham:
Good Morning Mr. Whitham, I kindly ask for your grace in granting a favor. As I understand, from a source in the form of one "Miss Rachel Crosby", you are traveling to a wedding this weekend. As it happens, Miss Rachel has a tent she is lending to me in good faith. I would be much obliged if you would take the trouble to procure Ms. Crosby's tent and bring it thus to the Commonwealth of Virginia. I would be in your debt. Humbly yours, Miss Tina Marie Cordova

I was amused.

Around Town

It Happened One Night
Smithsonian American Art Museum
Thursday 6:30pm


King Lear
I saw King Lear on Monday. It was amazing. Definitely the most intense Shakespeare play I have seen yet. I am a big fan of the bard, but I haven't read everything he's written. King Lear was something that I had not yet read. I walked into it completely blind. It was kind of exciting though to not know what was coming next. I was truly impressed with the play. The Shakespeare theater company completely hit the nail on the head. The play is a tragedy, so obviously everyone dies, but it was wonderfully refreshing to not have a nice and tidy happy ending. I will say I was a little anxious about walking into the play having never read it. I haven't studied Shakespeare in 10 years, and it isn't as if I read old English on a daily basis. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that I followed the play with ease.
For those of you planning to go see the play, I will give two more warnings, be prepared for full nudity (both male and female) and be prepared for the 3 hour and 15 minute play. Not for those with a short attention span.


Wow! What a great book. It took me a little longer to finish it than I normally take. I was about three chapters in before I realized the book is completely hysterical. It's about men at war and the war told from the perspectives of the different men. It explains how everything is a Catch-22 in war. I highly recommend to anyone, especially those with a drier sense of humor. Next on the list "Life in the time of Cholera".

From the Foodie in Me

Eastern Market

I've lived in DC for too long. I remember going to Eastern Market when I first moved here. I remember the day it burned down (I was sitting outside eating lunch and I could hear the fire engines roaring about) and now I am here for it's grad re-opening (2 years later).
For anyone who lived in and around DC you MUST visit this hot spot. There are all sorts of vendors, but the real reason to go is to get meat from the butcher, pastries from the baker, and veggies from the farmer. The wares in EM will definitely be a bit pricier than that of your local grocery store, but after you take that first bite into the perfectly ripened peach you'll know it's totally worth it.

Grinds My Gears

Children's Television
Once upon a time there was this wonderful show called "Sesame Street". It taught you numbers, and letters, and let you know what school was going to be like, and the characters were fun and cheerful, but they talked in full sentences. They had catchy songs, it was a wonderful show.
Now we have baby talk and Teletubbies. When I think about the idea that only 19% of adult Americans read at a high literacy level it makes me sad, and I just don't see the hope for the future. We fill our children's heads with junk. It really makes me sad.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Theo Told Me To...

Update my blog. So I am. You can thank Theo for this post.
I was so busy with work last week that I just didn't have time to update.


For those of you who read often you know that I was just added to another team. I'm working with International Education now, which is really demanding, but interesting all the same.
Working with the healthcare industry I have come to notice that more and more of my clients are forgien clients looking for the best and brightest Americans to move overseas and join their companies. I now see that the same thing is happening in the education industry. Right now I have 2 new clients. One is Armenian, the other is Saudi Arabian. It's really something to be worried about. These people are doing wonderfully for themselves, however America is losing out on its best resources. It's a scary thought because I know that this must be happening across the board in every industry, not just the ones I work with.

Around Town

King Lear

I know I have mentioned the $10 tickets before but I will now mention again because this is a great deal. Right now there is only a day showing available but they come out with the newest tickets tomorrow. So go early to their website:
and get tickets!

From the Foodie in Me

"Quick" Cornbread Dressing

My grandma made the best cornbread dressing on the face of the earth. My mom now follows the recipe and is 99% as good as grandma's. I make it and I'm at about 80%. It's still the best stuffing ever, but I'll have to practice more before I can make mine as good as theirs.
I've tweaked the recipe (so as not to give out the secret ingredients- and using cornbread mix instead of from scratch) and made it more manageable for a weekday dinner (as opposed to Thanksgiving dinner).

1/2 Can cream of Mushroom
1/2 Can cream of Chicken
1 box Cornbread mix
6 oz seasoned croutons
2 stalks celery (diced)
1/2 onion (diced)
1 stick of butter
Salt - 3 tbs
Pepper - 2 tbs
Poultry seasoning - 3 tbs
sage - -2 tbs
1 can chicken broth

Cook cornbread mix to specifications on the box.
Crumble cornbread into pieces and fold in croutons.
In a fry pan, sautee diced celery and onion.
Fold celery and onion mixture into cornbread/crouton mixture.
Fold in cream of Mushroom and cream of chicken.
Add spices.
Transfer mixture to casserole dish.
Cut butter into small pieces and top mixture with butter pieces.
Top entire mixture with chicken broth.
Bake in oven on 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

Weird Personal Fact of the Day

Socks, I don't like them. I feel like you shouldn't wear them unless you're wearing shoes.

Weekend Recap

I spent the weekend in Pawleys Island, SC.
It was absolutely gorgeous. We had perfect weather and I am darker than I was before I left.
I spent my days on the beach, it was awesome.
While there I also took a bike ride to the local Waves to pick up a fun noodle and a magnet.
The drive was a totally of 957 miles total. I feel very proud of myself. It still doesn't break the record though.
15 hours from South Padre Island to Pensacola Beach, Fl.
17 hours from Notre Dame to New Orleans.
I can totally do some driving if need be. "Need" is usually some sort of vacation.

Now what I "need" to do is figure out how to get to the beach again.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Four Day Work Week...

That's right! I decided yesterday that I wanted to be anywhere but here this weekend so I am headed off to Pawley's Island, SC. I'm tagging along with Annie on her beach vacation. I've met her family quite a few times at this point, so I think I'll be okay hanging with the Grimes clan.
Really excited!

G-Chat Halarity

I have some sketch ass friends.
Here are a few excerpts from a g-chat convo yesterday about "Bumpits"

Spencer: ugh, this girl and i went to seafood festival. well she started talking about how she's getting her hair did for Friday, and I'm like "just use a bumpit"

Spencer: it was a very "me" situation. It was a time i wish i was on reality tv. i would have taken a zach morris style aside and said "well i know where this master planned double date is going".

me: omg. I'm on the bumpit website
Spencer: bahahahaha. The Hollywood bumpit.
me: "not suitable for children under the age of 12" and "bumpits are not edible". Who in the f is eating them?

Spencer: A friend of ours wife was out with us last weekend and her bumpit came undone. lol
I had never seen one in person before
me: oh it's the white girls version of a weave
Spencer: yes that's what Ive been saying!

Spencer: i could never take a girl seriously who wears a bump it. You missed me sitting in the cab that night trying to put my arm around her to cop a feel of the bumpit. I didnt know what it looked like.
me: LMAO
Spencer: and i was trying to touch her head to feel the bumpit and everyone knew what i was doing except her and they were dying laughing. then somehow her phone got stuck in Arabic. Nothing funnier than blond girl with a bumpit trying to change her phone form Arabic.

Spencer: I'm obsessed with bumpits. I think they're the funniest thing ever made
me: but you like big hair! so really you should like them. They should be like your god.
Spencer: lol. I mean bumpits are kinda like the fake boobs of the big hair world. They stay in place better, but they just point too much and aren't as soft and fun. They don't move either they're just there for decoration.

Best convo about bumpits ever.

From the Foodie in Me

Pret a Manger

So this new sandwich shop opened up in Farragut. I knew it was a chain because my friend Theo had blogged about eating there ( I wasn't really keen to try it. I mean, in this area alone we have Au Bon Pain, Corner Bakery, Daily Market, Atrium Cafe, Capital Grounds... the list of sandwich places goes on and on. Plus we just got a "Organic to Go" downstairs. It's all kind of "eh". Yesterday I finally broke down and went to Pret a Manger. It is now my fave sandwich shop. They sell half sandwiches! Which is perfect for me. I never finish sandwiches and they don't really keep very well so it's like tossing money away. But they sell half sandwiches made fresh daily AND they are all prepackaged. I love not having to wait in line. I can just grab and go. They are also reasonably priced. Yesterday I got a chicken mozzarella sandwich with lots of fresh spinach leaves, dressed with a touch of balsamic vinaigrette, only $3! It was good too! I highly recommend this place if you work in the area!

Grinds My Gears

My insomnia. I shouldn't be this excited about sleeping 7 hours last night. But I am. I really am.


I am a HUGE fan. I know I've mentioned it before but last night was the season finale. I was so excited to watch it that I actually watched it live, with the commercials. I was so proud of Casey for breaking up with Max. I like this show because nothing is every wrapped up in a neat little package. It really does remind me a lot of my own college experience. Sure, some things are exaggerated. But, if you remember in college things that seem ridiculously silly now where a HUGE deal then, esp. if you were Greek.

Monday, June 15, 2009

I Blame Annie...

For my lack of posting.
She told me she wanted to guest post. But then she got "sick" and kept putting it off. So I kept putting off posting. We can all blame her for my lack of posts.

Weekend Recap


I went shooting at the NRA range with Anna, Hugh, and Steve-o. I am now a proud member of the NRA. It was SO much fun. I had an absolute blast. After a tough week there is nothing better than shooting. I shot a 22 and a 9 mil. I liked the 22 better, but I was advised that if I was going to buy a gun I should buy the biggest gun I can handle. I think I need to try a few more before I make a decision, but it was a good time nonetheless.
On Saturday I also went to the Cowboy mouth concert. It was a good time as usual. Slightly upset that they only played one set. I feel like the 9:30 Club kind of ripped me off. They are a great show any way you look at it though. Fun times were had and I for the first time in 6 months got drunk.


I woke up feeling phenomenal! I got out of bed ans stumbled some, then I realized I was still drunk. The hangover headache set in but luckily I was drinking my weight in rum, not beer, so the hangover wasn't awful. Tamsin and I set off to Elicia's place (she has a pool and a tennis court). We spent the majority of the day pool side. It was so nice just to enjoy the sun after a hard night of partying. We capped off the evening by heading over to Baja fresh to have a "quick" dinner with Annie and Brooke. I put "quick" in quotation marks because we ended up sitting outside of Baja fresh in Clarendon for like 3 hours. Literally the baja fresh workers turned out all the lights and still we sat just chatting. It was really nice.

From the Foodie in Me

My Top Five Fave Places to Eat in Clarendon

5. Jay's
Their menu is simple and cheap, plus I really like Torence.

4. Mr. Days.
Their cheese fries are an out of this world experience. Just ask Annie and Dave.

3. Clarendon Grill
Not so much for the food, but for the fantastic service. Rob is my man.

2. Whitlows
1/2 Price Lunch every day of the week! Their WOW pannini is just WOW.

1. Facca Luna
2 slices of Pizza, a kickass salad and a drink for $6. I dare you to beat that price.

Family Ties

So my brother (Adrian) called me on Saturday morning to chat. I am really close to both my brother and my sister. We have been known to have three way calling sessions with each other, we are tight like that. So this is an actual conversation I thought was amusing.

Adrian: You'll never guess what I saw on TV last night.
Me: What?
Adrian: He-man.
Me: The cartoon? or the movie? or the cartoon movie?
Adrian: Nah, the cartoon.
Me: I didn't even know that was on the air anymore. What channel was that on?
Adrian: Nah, I have it on DVD.
Me: You're the biggest dork I know. I can't believe you have the He-Man series on DVD. You're such a nerd.
Adrian: ** laughs** Yeah, I know. I wanted the cartoon-movie but I couldn't remember the name of it.
Me: He-Man and She-Ra, The Secret of the Sword. Wait, let me go to the shelf and get my copy to double-check.

That's right ladies and gents. My brother has the animated series on DVD and I made fun of him for it, but I have the full length animated film on DVD. Bought it last year. When we were little and allowed to pick out a movie at the video store it was the only one we could ever agree on. We must have watched it 100 times. The makers of the He-Man/ She-Ra line are geniuses.

Grinds My Gears

Perez Hilton. What a commie bastard.

Weird Personal Fact of the Day

I didn't know what an adverb was till the 8th grade. I went to crappy public school till 7th grade and was never taught parts of speech.

Books/TV/ Movies

The 5 People You Meet in Heaven

So while at Elicia's on Sunday I forgot to bring a book so I grabbed this off her bookshelf.
It's a quick little read only about 200 pages. I recommend as a great plane book. Something to pass the time that you'll be finished with by the time you hit the ground.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

From the mind of Annie, Part 2

I am not a cook - in fact, I hate it. But there is a great summer pasta dish that I feel compelled to share (and I made it the other day!)

Cheese Tortellini
Fresh Tomato
Red Onion
Olive Oil

Cook the Tortellini then throw it into a bowl of freezing cold ice water. Dice the veggies, mince the cilantro, then drain the pasta. Place the pasta into a bowl (no water this time) and sprinkle with the olive oil, then add the diced and minced ingredients. TA DA! cold pasta salad with no mayo :)

You can eat it as a side, a salad, or add chicken to make it an entre.

I finished "The Virgin's Lover" a couple weeks ago, and it was ok. It is historical fiction and it is a little bit frustrating because the inner struggle of the Queen is quite a bit drawn out. I'd say it is a 'meh' book if we were using a 'Tina Scale.'

I've moved on to "A Bed for the Night." Sounds intriguing, right? It isn't. It is about the crisis of humanitarianism. A very informative book, and I think I'll learn a lot, but it is far from captivating (I think the copy I have was purchased as a used text book).

I'm going to the beach next week and there I'll try to read two books; "Love the One You're With" of the "Something Blue" author, and "The Beach House" with comes highly Tina recommended. These are both vapid chicklit so I should be able to get through them fairly quickly.


There is a place called Massage Envy and they have been running a $50 special for a one hour massage for first time customers. I highly recommend it, it is certainly worth the $50+tip you will spend.

It is good for you to get a good massage as often as you can afford it. They can help with posture, stress, and pain. So go for it!

Not sure what to make of this...I’m at the point in my life where I hear about a new pregnancy every couple of weeks. This is often exciting and fun and can sometimes lead to things like baby showers. A couple of weeks ago I co-hostessed my first baby shower for a wonderful mama-to-be in my small group at church. It was a really nice shower with a great group of women, but the weirdest thing happened to me that day and that is what I really want to talk about.

I was tasked with various things in preparation for the shower, as were the other hostesses. The last thing on my list was ice so I planned to stop at a gas station near the shower location on my way to set up for the day. That’s what I did, I stopped at a gas station for ice and I don’t know if I’ll ever forget it. I asked the man in the garage area if he could help me, “I’d like to buy a couple bags of ice, please.” He smiled and walked into the store to ring up my ice and take my money, all the while being very friendly. We went outside to get the ice and he asked if I was headed to the beach, I told him “no, I’m helping to throw a baby shower” and I mentioned that I had gotten to go to the beach the weekend before. As this conversation continued he asked, and I answered that we had gone to the Outer Banks in North Carolina. He then told me that he was from Raleigh, NC and then I said that I was originally from Spartanburg, SC and had gone to college in Winston-Salem, NC – then it happened. He said “Oh, well then you’re used to seeing a bunch of old ugly black people!” with a big smile on his black freckled face.

So many things ran through my head; you’re not ugly. you’re handsome. you’re nice. why would you say that? is this a trick? I don’t understand. do black people think other black people are ugly? are you biased against other southern black people? do I come across as someone who thinks that? do you think I think that?

“I wouldn’t say ugly” with a smile, is what eventually came out of my mouth.

I haven’t forgotten that exchange yet, and I still don’t understand it. I’m sure it was an innocuous statement from his point of view, but it sure knocked my socks off. It was like I was the first white girl to not shudder at his appearance or to enter willingly into friendly conversation. It makes me curious about how other 20 something white girls have reacted to him. He was a nice man, and I’ll gladly buy ice from him again if I’m ever in that neighborhood and in need of a bag of ice.

There isn’t a moral here, and I can’t say I learned anything from it, I just still get a little befuddled when I remember that exchange.

Truancy Report
The people working at Theodore Roosevelt High School are incredibly rude. I shouldn’t know this, but unfortunately I do. They were not helpful with the following situation:

Some kid at Theodore Roosevelt High School gave my boss’ office number as his ‘home’ number, and let me tell you – Reggie will not be receiving the ‘Perfect Attendance” award this year. Dude stopped going to school a few months ago and he gave you a fake number for his mama.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Hostile take-over, take 2

This is Annie, I'm guest blogging again! I like Tina's system, so I'm going to stick to it:

I spent this past weekend in Richmond with Frank. It is a lovely city with lots of nice people and some really good food, there are also some quirks that we discovered as we wandered around on Saturday:

I am a full convert to the 'dog owners club of crazy' at this point. I don't carry Hamilton in a bag (anymore, he won't fit), I don't buy him clothes or super expensive anything, but I do take him with me as much as possible.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Tomato Tomato

So the expression "Tomato, To-mah-to" looks just silly if you type it out rather than saying it aloud. Just an FYI for everyone out there. (Props to Bill on this one)

My Weekend Recap

I feel like the weekend was a million days long. I accomplished so much.
Friday I stayed in, did some laundry, no big deal.
Saturday I got up fairly early, and headed out to Eastern Market. I had lunch at the counter inside the marketplace (Shrimp sandwich) and a fresh squeezed lemonade. I walked around the market a bit, didn't really see anything of crazy interest. BUT as I was walking away I noticed this sign that read "Books" with an arrow. Well of course I had to follow.
I found the most wonderful bookstore I have ever been in. It's must have been a row house at some point. Basically the entire shop is filled from floor to ceiling with books. It's a claustrophobic's nightmare. Windows are completely blocked with bookshelves. The basement ceiling was probably 6 inches higher than me. It reminded me of the Borges novella I read about the never ending library. I could have literally sat in there and read for days on end. However, as it was a Saturday the place was busy, I bought 3 books and went on my merry way.
After the bookstore I headed back to Clarendon and made plans with Sarah. The legwarmers were in town so we decided to see if we could get scalped tickets. We were successful and even ran into the Backer's at the concert. A great time was had by all.
On Sunday I went to the Nationals game with Anna Pope. She had suite/sweet tickets. I really enjoy sitting in the front row... but nothing beats watching a game from an air conditioned suite. I had 2 hot dogs. Yum. Sunday evening I went over to S. Murphy's for some vegan fare, and topped the night off with a quick visit from Fernando.
Great Weekend.

Around Town

Cowboy Mouth
9:30 Club
Saturday 6/13
I already have my tickets and am planning my adventure to Ben's Chili Bowl!

Grinds My Gears

Chinatown in DC. It's sooo sub par to Chinatowns anyplace else. Are there even any Chinese places there? Cause every time I go I head over to Fado's or RFD, neither of these is very Chinese.


The Stranger
by Albert Camus

I was actually really surprised by this book. It's more of a novella. It has an ending that doesn't wrap up nicely. It's slightly open ended with the protagonist facing beheadment.
I really enjoyed the book however. The themes were similar to that of Our Town (Thornton Wilder). As the audience we see the protagonist move in time as though one day bleeds into the next, never fully able to distinguish one from the other, living life without emotions. It's a very moving piece and at just over 100 pages well worth a read.

Weird Personal Fact of the Day

I love books. If you read my blog often you've probably picked up on this. I know most people like books, and read often. Some people are more prone to read newspapers or magazines, or articles of interest. I love books though. I love to read, but there is something about being immersed in another person's ideas that I find completely fascinating. Whether it's a fiction and you're being whisked away to early 60's Alabama (To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee), or a non-fiction, and you're learning about the subtle complexities of class within the newer generation of workers (Rise of the Creative Class by Richard FLorida), I am equally amazed. The thought and passion these people put into their works astounds me. Also the originality of ideas. It really moves me. When I walked into that bookstore on Saturday I almost wanted to cry. I just find books that fascinating and captivating. I can literally not put down a good book. I will sit for hours and hours on end until I finish it. I just HAVE to know how the story plays out. Also, I'm ALWAYS reading something new. The idea that anyone can go days or weeks without reading makes me immensely sad. There is all this fun and all these ideas out there waiting to be explored, just waiting to be read. People in other countries don't have the advantages that we do, we can read ANYTHING we desire. I just cant imagine not wanting to.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Furloughs Continued...

So we had a big staff meeting about furloughs yesterday. Ive decided to take my time off the weeks leading up to Labor Day. So I will have no work from August 22-September 7th. For those of you counting that is 17 days off. I think I'm going to try to plan it so that I return to boston on Saturday the 5th in time for Anne's wedding on the 6th, and I'll drive back down to DC with Tamsin. I might take the 21st off as well so I can travel that day. If I plan this all right I can have 13 days in Spain then come to Boston and rest a day, go to Anne's wedding, and travel back to DC the following day. It will be hectic, but I think I can do it. I'm really excited about it.

First thing is first. I have to book that ticket.

From the Foodie in Me

I really enjoy baking, and making cakes look spectacular. However I do not enjoy the taste of fondant.
I found a really good fondant recipe online. It's still not as good as normal frosting, but it's at least edible.

1 cup light corn syrup
1 cup shortening
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
2 pounds confectioners' sugar

In a large bowl, stir together the shortening and corn syrup. Mix in the salt and vanilla flavoring, then gradually mix in the confectioners' sugar until it is a stiff dough. Knead by hand. If the dough is sticky, knead in more confectioners' sugar until it is smooth. Store in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator.
To use, roll out on a clean surface that has been dusted with confectioners' sugar until it is 1/8 inch thick or thinner if you can. Drape over frosted and chilled cakes and smooth the sides down, or cut into strips to make bows and other decorations.

Weird Personal Fact of the Day

I am super craftsy. I dont know how many ppl know that. I'm thinking about starting a second blog just for crafts. Right now I'm stockpiling my ideas to see how many I actually have, and can execute.

Grinds My Gears

Hippies. Dirty Dirty Hippies.

New Home?

I'm thinking about moving soon. I do love living alone, but I think i would like a house more. Plus, I'm in the mood to stir things up. I've lived in my current apartment for 3 years, I feel like it's time to shake things up. If I do move the first thing I am doing is planting a garden.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Furloughs and Vacation

Today everyone in North America received a notice that a mandatory furlough was being instated. For those of you who are unfamiliar a furlough is mandatory unpaid time off.
I have 2 options. I can either take off a solid 2 weeks, or I can take off one day a week for 10 weeks. The furlough must be taken during the summer as this is typically our slow time.
I've decided to approach it as I would approach taking off a band-aid. I'm taking the 2 weeks in a row and just ripping that sucker right off.
Although furloughs truly suck, the one positive is that you have time to do things that you might not otherwise do. I think I'm going away. I've wanted to visit Europe for some time now, and I just have never made it. This is the time. I'm taking my furlough at the end of August so that I can have as much time as possible to save up. I haven't decided where I'm going yet, but I'm leaning towards Spain. A few reasons. My last name, Cordova, is Spanish. According to my dad when his great great grandfather came to Mexico from Spain his last name was Cordoba, it was changed after a generation. To be honest, I prefer the V to the B, but the point is, Cordova is a place in Spain that I have always wanted to see. I also want to see Barcelona, Madrid and Seville. Also, although my Spanish is plenty rusty, I'd have a far easier time in Spain than any other non-English speaking country. I'm going to work on getting my passport situation all squared away. Many of you know I officially changed my name to "Tina" earlier this year, however when I got my Virginia licence I didn't have all the documentation I needed to have it changed. So, I must go back to the DMV, get a new licence and then get my passport. It'll be an annoying process, but in the end, I'm going to look at this whole experience as an opportunity to see a new place and explore a new land.

From the Foodie in Me

Tip from the Murphy household:
In the instance that you don't have confectioners sugar, you can put regular sugar in the blender and it will work the same.

Weird Personal Fact of the Day

I don't like smelly lotions. I prefer unscented things.

Books/ TV/ Movies

I admit it, although I spend a lot of my time reading, I often find myself indulging in crappy chick lit/ beach books. I cant help it, they are easy reads that don't require a lot of things. So for your pleasure, my chick lit author recommendations:

Jane Green - The Beach House, Jemina J, Mr. Maybe
Emily Griffin - Something Borrowed, Something Blue
Lauren Weisberger - The Devil Wears Prada
Marian Keyes - Angels
Meg Cabot (younger fiction)- The Princess Diaries

Around Town

Rock Creek Park
"Screen on the Green"
Marley and Me

Grinds My Gears

The Metro

Yeah, I know you have all heard the metro ranting before. Tourists don't stand on the right, walk on the left, the trains are always breaking, the trains are late, etc etc etc.
My rant is more about the way things are run in general. I would like to take control of the metro system. I would guarantee a profit in 3 years time. I think the metro's biggest problem are the employees. The job market is saturated with talent right now. I would take advantage of that talent, employ marketing campaigns, and feed off customer satisfaction surveys to have everything running much better.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I Can't Believe It's Barely Tuesday

For the past 2 weeks I have had shortened work weeks. The 5 day week is killing me.


I have a crazy schedule this week. I'm going to HH's all over the place, birthday's, tennis, girls nights.I have discovered I am a much happier person when I am busy. When all I have to look forward to is reruns of gilmore girls and my bed (and i love both, dont get me wrong) I tend to be moodier. I really enjoy socializing. I was watching an episode of Greek last night and the main female character was having trouble being alone. I totally empathize with that situation. In college there was ALWAYS someone around. Someone to do things with. Being in a sorority made finding friends even easier. I was always out and about in college. Between mandatory sorority events, Brunos, the fly, classes, and hanging out in smokers alley the alone time was few and far between. Once college ends, if you're lucky, you find a group of friends who are also out of college. You all continue living your crazy days, going out on Tuesday nights, drinking the weekends away, etc. However, once you hit your mid 20's, people grow up. Sure you still drink and party, but you are just as likely to go to a movie, or plan a game night. There is a change there in how you plan your activities. They no longer center around booze and partying. Your activities change as you mature, and you might find yourself with more alone time than you ever had before. For someone like me, that's a challenge. I like alone time, and I love my apartment and my bed, but really, staying busy makes me feel good. For those of you with free time on your hands I suggest you look into classes at a local community college, or joining a league of some sort. It will get you out of the house, you'll make new friends and you stay active, which is the way you stay young.

Around Town

Shakespeare in the Park

TIME: May 26 – June 5, 2005, 7:30PM
LOCATION: Carter Barron Ampitheater, Rock Creek Park
EQUIPMENT: Yourself, free ticket (pick up that same day at the box office), picnic supplies, anti-mosquito spray Free Shakespeare in the park is one of my favorite urban summer treats...don't miss it!From the Shakespeare Theater email:Please join us for William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream at the 15th annual Shakespeare Theatre Free For All at Carter Barron Amphitheatre.FREE performances are from Thursday, May 26, through Sunday, June 5, at 7:30 p.m. (no performance Monday, May 30). *
A Midsummer Night's Dreamby William Shakespeare
directed by Jef Hall-Flavinoriginal direction by Mark Lamos
7:30 p.m. nightly (no performance Monday, May 30th)
All performances, including those specially designated below, are free and open to the public. Come out and picnic and join us under the stars!
GROUP TICKETS - for nonprofit, community-serving organizations.(Groups who volunteer are acknowledged from the stage that evening.)
MARION BRYCE MEMBER PICNIC – Thursday, May 26, 2005

Weird Personal Fact of the Day

My hair dries straight naturally.

Grinds My Gears

Dress Shorts

Yes, I have a lot of friends who wear dress shorts, I know I will probably offend a few of you. I don't care. I hate shorts in general. I feel that skirts are more flattering and feminine. I dont see why you would wear shorts when you could wear a skirt (athletic and workout shorts excluded). Dress shorts really bug me. I think that women get to push the envelope a lot because men are afraid to question our clothing attire. They don't want to seem insensitive or broach the subject of clothing or looks, so women take advantage and can basically wear anything short of jeans to the office. I think we've pushed too far. I say dress shorts should be the first to go.

From the Foodie in Me

In any Mexican restaurant in Texas your beverage choice always includes at least 1 Agua Fresca. Basically it's fruit water. They are Delicious and refreshing, especially on a hot summer day. My favorite is cantaloupe flavored, and watermelon flavored, but you can really use any fruit you want.

Agua de Melon
1 ripe cantaloupe or honey dew peeled, seeded and diced
2 qts cold water
1/2 cup sugar*
Mash the melon. If using a blender, add just enough water to blend into a coarse pulp. Put the pulp in a pitcher
On a stove top "cook" water and sugar until sugar is completely dissolved in the water.
Add the water and the sugar to the pitcher. Stir. Refrigerate until cool.

Agua de Sandia (Watermelon)
3 cups watermelon, diced (no rind)
10 cups cold water
1/2 cup sugar*
Mash the fruit until it is quite smooth.
On a stove top "cook" water and sugar until sugar is completely dissolved in the water.
Add the water and the sugar to the pitcher. Stir. Refrigerate until cool

* May need more or less sweetener depending on the sweetness of the fruit you are using.

Free Stuff!

Have pictures that you want to get developed but haven't had the time/ money?
Sign up for a CVS photo account and get 50 free prints.

If you choose "In store pickup" there will be no extra delivery charge!

Monday, June 1, 2009

My Weekend in Texas...

Texas Weekend
I know I have been awful about posting recently but I have good reason.
I have spent 2 weekends away in a row. First the Outer Banks, then Texas.
Here are some pictures of my weekend in Texas. More to be posted on facebook soon.
This is the pic I took with my phone to send to Whitham. I wanted to taunt him as I was spending the day on a golf course.

This is the golf cart that I spent Saturday riding around in. Gotta love country club perks.
This is the condo I stayed in. My mom and dad own a timeshare, but are in the process of buying their own place on the lake. It was really nice for a weekend getaway.

It was a great weekend all around. My baby sister graduated from high school and she is all set to go to college in the fall. I definitely shed some tears at her graduation.
I also realized that although I often miss my family you kind of become used to not seeing people that you love. In college I went home quite, maybe once every 2 months. After college, when I was living in Austin I was home almost every weekend. It was a big shock to my parents when I told them I had been offered a job in DC. They were really supportive though. They bought my plane ticket to DC and were behind me 100%. They also thought that I was only leaving for a year or 2. This past February makes 3 years I have lived in DC. I have to say that I can't see myself leaving anytime soon. Sometimes I think about it (mostly driven by the housing market in Texas) but I have really built a life here. Good job, friends, boyfriend, etc. It's funny that someplace so un-Texas can be my home.
Around Town
Jameson Bartender's Ball
Rock and Roll Hotel
1353 H Street NE
$20 at the door
From the Foodie in Me
Sour Cream Cookies (Recipe from Rachel Crosby)
Cream together 2 cups of sugar, 1/2 cup butter and 1/2 cup Crisco. Add 2 well beaten eggs, 1 1/2 cup sour cream, 1 tsp baking soda, and 1/2 to 1 tsp nutmeg. Gradually mix in about 6 cups of flour (enough to make the dough roll out). Cut with a cookie cutter and sprinkle with sugar (regular white), if not frosting them. Bake in moderate oven.
Grinds My Gears
My mom.
This isnt a normal "mom" rant. This one is specific. This one is in relation to her hoarding items.
My mom has an entire kitchen and china cabinet full of items. Tons of stuff, cast iron skillets, pots and pans, smoked Crystal punch bowls, etc etc etc. She uses NONE OF IT. I don't think my mom has cooked at home since she opened her restaurant 9 years ago. All these stacks of things are just sitting there collecting dust.
I was home this past weekend and tried to make off with the smoked crystal punch bowl.
It's my favorite. It's from the 70's at least. She's had it as long as I have been alive and she has never used it. She argued that she used it twice, I was just too young to remember. Let me recap. In the past TWENTY SIX years she has used this item TWICE. Yet she won't let me take it. It drives me mad. I'm still planning on taking it at some point. In the meantime I snatched her gold drop pearl earrings... after all, she wasn't using those either... :)
Weird Personal Fact of the Day
I eat a bowl of cereal every night before I go to bed.
Free Stuff
So those of us who have lived here awhile all remember
they basically gave away movie screenings, unfortunately the site is no longer up.
however I was just informed of a new site . They give away movie screenings in DC/MD/VA. The only thing is they are "sold out" quickly so you need to check often. But it's free tickets, so you can't beat it!