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December 2004

Auld acquaintance not forgot

My typical new year's eves are predictably lame-o affairs involving spiked punch, people I don't know, truly pathetic attempts at small talk, and no midnight kisses, not even from my husband. One year, as I recall, I think I went to bed before the TV fireworks were even over. But I have actual plans this year, sort of, involving friends and glorious hot pot. Whether or not I'm awake to receive my new year kiss remains to be seen.

But a while back I was in Switzerland for New Year's, hanging out with a bunch of drunk Germans and eating the Swiss version of hot pot: stinky cheese fondue. I'd invited myself along my aunts' ski trip to Montreux even though I hate skiing and I hate being cold and I really hate whatever kind of cheese they use for fondue. God, that stuff reeks. I hung out in town and took picture after picture of Lake Geneva while everyone else was up in the mountains. It was the week after Christmas and I must say that Switzerland is as beautiful as Vermont during that time of year- all that snow. (Excuse me while I break out my blue and white napkins and create an impromptu snowscape with parsley trees.) I usually managed to steer clear of the Fervent, Hard Core, and One-Track-Minded Skiiers, a mix of Germans and Americans dressed in flourescent waterproof parkas, but my presence was required for the ski trip's planned New Year's Event: a huge dinner in some kind of traditional Swiss restaurant where there were animals on the walls and waitresses drinking right along with the patrons. It was dark and loud and I was very suspicious of the German who ended up sitting across from me. His name was probably Kurt or something like that, but I'd have to go back to my journal to find out his real name, so for now I'll call him Gunther because he totally looked like Gunther. A decidedly less fruity Gunther with a hollow leg because- God bless Gunther- after downing all of his fondue (meat and cheese) and a bottle and a half of wine, he noticed that the picky American girl across from him was gingerly dipping her bread chunks just barely into her cheese fondue and perhaps she was in need of a Fondue Hero. All hail the Man who Inhales Cheese! Gunther made sure my wine glass was always full and that no snooty Swiss person would look sideways at my dwindling basket of bread but full pot of cheese. Gunther even pulled off the layer of burned cheese at the bottom of the pot, though I'm not sure if this was because he was still hungry, trashed, or just very polite.

When the food was gone, the singing began. I didn't know the language, but it's easy to fake it when everyone else is on their eighteenth bottle of wine. We stumbled, and I do mean stumbled, back to our hotel and there might have been fireworks, but it was cold and snowy and there were stairs involved and did I mention we were drunk? Oh, the wine, so much better than the cheese.

Cheese is not a hot pot ingredient, but paper thin slices of beef and pork, chunks of tofu, bok choy, noodles and vegetables are, preferably dipped into a bowl of sesame seed oil, garlic, sesame paste, and two other kinds of sauces- one that's brown and one made out of The Mysterious Green Vegetable (tm Blondie). YUM. My in-laws are delivering all the goodies tomorrow morning (because Phillip and I, what do we know about hot pot?!) and my mouth is watering already.

See you on the other side of 2004.


Presents for me

Holiday weekend + Sims 2 + DVD "shout out the name of the movie" game (which I rocked, by the way) + Monday morning at work = sleepy, unmotivated, slowly-coming-off-her-sugar-high girl.

The best thing about today is that no one is going to play that stupid Waitresses song on the radio anymore. The worst thing is that I have to go back to work which means decidedly less time to boss my Sims around. And about that... Phillip bought me the original Sims game a few years ago. I scoffed, I snorted, I rolled my eyes, but then I tried it and not only do you get to play GOD in that game, you get to live out all of your innermost interior decorating fantasies. It's AWESOME. And the Sims 2? MORE awesome. (Although one of my Sims was left at the altar the very first minute I played. I kind of suck.)

My old Sims game only held my attention for a month or two, but Phillip figures that's more than enough time to for him to finish his Lord of the Rings extended edition marathon (aren't these movies already "extended"?) and finally watch Hero. (Which I totally star in, by the way. Am I gorgeous or what?)

Other gifts of note:

1. Sheets! When I called home and told my sister that I got sheets AND I was excited about it, I heard her say to our mom, "Please shoot me if I ever get excited about sheets." And Becca? YOU WILL TOTALLY EAT YOUR WORDS.

2. An ice cream maker! That doesn't use ice! AMAZING!

3. Pretty shiny pearl earrings that hopefully cost a lot more than the 30 kwai pearl earrings I bought in China, the pearls of which unattached themselves from the studs as soon as I got home. Stupid Friendship Store.

4. Towels! See #1.

5. Adorable powder blue jacket. Too bad I hate skiing because I could be SUCH the snowbunny.

6. Furry feathery slip-on coasters for my pretty sparkly wine glasses. I did not know such things existed! How in the world did I throw cocktail parties before owning such glorious accessories? Sadly, the internet is lacking a proper photo of this fabulous invention. Stay tuned.

7. And a big mirror to hang above my dresser, something I've been wanting FOREVER, and for which Phillip asked to borrow his dad's drill before we left their house on Christmas Day. Hours before I opened it. Hours before he opened his brand new super-manly drill. I am the Best Wife Ever.

So Christmas? Successful. Also- instead of a sermon at Christmas morning Mass, we were treated to a nativity pageant put on by developmentally-disabled teenagers and adults. They were a motley group, quite into their roles and thrilled to be performing. Afterwards, the director called up each actor by name to the front of the church. They got up quietly and stood beaming on the altar steps, except for one woman who, when her name was called, shrieked, "THAT'S ME!" We chuckled politely to ourselves, but it made me think a little bit about The Best Christmas Pageant Ever. Unto ME a child is born.


Christmas list

Work hours until my three and a half day weekend: 21

Presents left to purchase: 1

Liters of water sucked up by the tree whose trunk we did not saw off upon bringing it home from that urban tree farm, QFC: 0.000741

Number of brothers and sisters and sisters-in-law who will not be spending Christmas with me as they are obligated to spend it with Mom and Dad halfway around the world, and who swear to think of me every time they order a cappuccino: 5

Presents shlepped to Italy by my personal mules: 11

Cards sent: 0

Cards received: eleventy frillion

Hours left of Autumn: 13

Number of dollars required to see a production of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever: 20

Presents under the tree: Lots

Presents under the tree for Phillip from me: 3

Presents under the tree for me from Phillip: 0


Witness statement

I saw an accident happen today. I was sitting at a light two blocks from my apartment. It's not a perfect four-way intersection. The cross streets are at skewed angles and from where I was sitting, I could turn left, center-left, center-right or right. I was listening to "Leroy, the Redneck Reindeer" and then a car entered my field of vision from the right and began to quickly turn directly towards me. Which I thought was odd- the driver should have been aiming for the lane to my left. Then another car appeared from the left, the opposite direction, and slammed into the right rear fender of the car facing me. The woman inside looked stunned, then threw her hands up in the air, shouted something to herself and put her head on the steering wheel.

I looked at my light- it was green.

I had just enough room to turn left, but the car to my right, attempting to go straight across, was blocked. The cars across the street weren't turning either, even though they could easily have made it into any lane. We all watched the two cars, waiting to see if someone moved. I wondered if anyone was hurt, but I didn't know what to do. Since I was positioned to turn left, my car was in the middle of the road. I couldn't very well jump out and pull a body from a burning vehicle. The cars weren't burning. And they finally dragged themselves to the side of the road. The car next to me made the first exit, slowly driving around the piece of fender lying in the street. And I thought, well, if he goes, I can go. And I turned left, my eyes on the rearview mirror.

There was a fatality accident on I-5 yesterday near Marysville. This morning on the news they said that fellow motorists pulled the injured from their cars. They said they used the tow rope on a semi to heave one car off another. There was a person stuck between the two somehow. Traffic was backed up for miles and miles.

I saw an accident happen, but I didn't really. Because now that I think about it, the woman coming from my left had pulled into lanes of oncoming traffic. If she was trying to turn left, why was her car pointed directly at me? What color was her light? I'd been looking at my nails, singing along, trying to get my bangs to sweep to the side just so. Was it yellow? Was she trying to turn? Did she see the other car coming towards her and simply tried to get out of the way? By turning towards me she may have avoided a head-on collision. Maybe the other car ran a red light, but what, then, was the woman doing on the wrong side of the road? How long did it take me to look at my own light? It was hard to look away. Maybe it wasn't already green.

No one who saw it happen stuck around. As I turned left and headed for work, it occurred to me that insurance companies always ask about witnesses. When the woman calls her insurance company and they ask, "Did anyone see it happen?" she'll have to say yes, obviously. The entire intersection watched in grotesque slow motion. But is there anyone to leave a statement? Will anyone come forward? No. We all had somewhere to be.

I watched the smaller car smash into the bigger one. I saw the piece of fender fly off. I saw the expletive-laced thoughts of the woman in the first car. I saw her slump her shoulders and rest her forehead on the steering wheel. I wondered if she had a cell phone to call her husband. And the office. She was going to be late for work. I saw the smaller car with the busted front end hobble over to the barely-existent shoulder. And I saw the woman sigh, raise her head, shift gears and roll her damaged car backwards to the side of the road.

I would like to think, had a car caught fire, had one driver slumped over the steering wheel involuntarily, had the cars sat there without moving until they formed a twisted and smoking metal lump- I would like to think I might have done something.

But I picture it: an accident happens before my eyes, a caved in windshield, a glimpse of a person inside, a crumpled front end and glass on the road. And my thoughts: What can I do? I'm not a doctor or a nurse. I'm sure someone else has called 911 by now. No need to inundate those poor people who answer the phones. Maybe someone needs a ride, but everyone's on their cell phones. I'm sure help is coming. I could pull over, but I'll only be in the way.

I did call 911 once. I saw a washing machine- an entire washing machine- sitting in the middle of the carpool lane on the way to my grandma's house. Phillip was driving so I had my hands free to make the call. But it was the second or third large object I'd seen in the road that day. I didn't call about the couch or the mattress, so the guilt must have carried over.

That intersection is probably all clear now. It wasn't a big accident, or even very costly. No ambulance was required. No fire trucks. And on I-5 near Marysville people are driving over the spot where someone died last night. When that happened I was far away, driving home, listening to the radio. They advised everyone to stay clear of I-5 because a multiple-car fatality accident was causing horrendous backups. They moved on to the next inconvenience. It's always seemed kind of callous to me, to gloss over these things. If they're announcing a fatality accident on the radio, it seems the least they could do is tack a little prayer onto the end of the traffic report.


The morning after

The day after last year's white elephant gift exchange, I found a stack of crappy cds in the kitchen drawer. A month later I found a Buddha figurine in a tub of vanilla ice cream I was about to throw out. This year?

 

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Veangeance will be mine. Oh yes, it will be mine.


No more sweaty windows

This will be quick.

They're putting new windows in tomorrow and about this I am supposed to be unbelievably excited. Except- not. We had to move the chair and pull out my desk and move the table and we had a PARTY here Saturday night and I am still picking up the napkins and plastic cups. So all the living room furniture is in the middle of the living room, right where my feet are supposed to go while I'm spending quality time with TiVo. I can't go in the office- which is five times as disastrous as usual- because it makes me jittery. I'm sitting on the couch trying to Calm Down About All The Unsettledness. But Phillip? Is inspired by the moving and the jostling and is organizing his desk, taking out the recycling, putting the dishes away, clearing up all the wrapping paper still on the floor from Saturday, and oh my God he's washing the dishes. He's WASHING THE DISHES.

It feels like moving. I hate moving. Also? They are so not going to be done putting in the windows tomorrow. They attached Wednesday to the time commitment, just in case. But it's DECEMBER, people, and we had bathtubs full of rain dumping over my office today and I'm very interested to see how they're going to put windows in without Nature soaking my living room. And don't try anything funny, Window People, because we took pictures.

Yay for the new windows and all- which were supposed to be done in AUGUST and are only being put in now because the landlord gets a TAX BREAK if he gets it done by December 31st- but I hate hate hate the furniture being out of place and the fact that I can't enjoy my Christmas tree because the CHAIR IS IN THE WRONG PLACE. The chair that has been in the wrong place since FRIDAY NIGHT. It's totally worth it to warp your universe to host a PARTY, but warping it for strangers who will enter your apartment in your absence to remove giant sections of your walls?

Whatever. Phillip is STILL washing dishes.

I might have a cheerier disposition tomorrow. And if I do, I will tell the story of the White Elephant Gift Exchange, aka the Night of Fantastically Awful People Who Think It's Totally Fine To Quietly "Forget" Their "Gifts" At The Hostess' Apartment. If you're lucky there will also be a photo essay featuring my shower and Darth Maul.

All others suffering from OCD, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and Sustained Freak Outs Over Unsettled Living Spaces are welcome to contact me, Pity Party Planner Extraordinaire. Wine and leftover Christmas party cookies will be served.


Wherein Banana Republic elevates itself to an important government position

When I woke up this morning it was light outside. And that's how I knew it was going to be an Alexander kind of day.

I woke up about 5 minutes after I should have left for work. It took me five minutes to get dressed, dump my makeup and my toothbrush in my purse, and run out the door. I got to work about ten minutes late- not too bad, eh?- although I spent the next 15 minutes in the bathroom downstairs pinning back greasy hair and slicking on lip gloss in a bold attempt to look Professional. I settled for Presentable. ('Presentable' was a fun word to teach the Chinese students, by the way.)

I usually don't sleep late. Or sleep in. Or sleep, come to think of it, because even when I think I'm sleeping, Phillip is having conversations with the sleep-talking crazy version of me. But a few factors may have contributed to the hair my mother would be ashamed of. In reverse order:

1. The Stupid Freaking Firm. Can't put down book. Absolutely must know if Abby and Mitch screw the Mafia and the Feds.

2. Alex comes over and shows me this. Wine sprays out my nose and all over keyboard. Phillip has conniption fit.  Must clean up before divorce papers arrive. 

3.More Christmas cookies. I am now  Crazy Woman with Flour In Her Hair and Melted Chocolate On Her Face.

4. I went shopping last night. Major shopping. Christmas shopping for a Particular Someone who then ruined everything by getting out of nerdy Visual Basic class late and causing me to act like a shoplifter in Pacific Place while I raced to get to the car before he did. Spending money wears me out. Also, hilarity ensued at the downtown Banana Republic wherein Banana Republic recommended that I let Social Security know that I changed my last name because they, that holy database of Important Facts and Numbers, the wicked smart folks who run the Banana Republic, could not match my new name to my social security number and, had only I informed Social Security of my new last name, I would not find myself waiting for the entire administration of the Banana Republic to amend the situation. 

"How peculiar," said I, "that I have in my possession a Social Security card printed with my new last name! Surely this is a fluke. Surely Banana Republic keeps excellent records."

CLERK: Huh?

MAGGIE: Yeah. I changed my information, like, a YEAR ago. It's kind of required. I can go get my card, if you want.

CLERK: Uhhh

MAGGIE: Also, my marriage certificate is all crumpled up because the United States Postal Service is blind and could not read the "DO NOT BEND" I carefully wrote on the envelope when I mailed it off to Social Security to get a new card with a new name. Would you like to see my marriage certificate?

CLERK: Hmm. No, I don't think we need to do that-

MAGGIE: Right. See my driver's license? New name. A Chinese name. As you can see, I am not Chinese. But my husband is. It's his name. See? Do you know how long I sat at the DMV to acquire this driver's license? Did you know that some Asian political action committee kept calling me before the election asking for money? THEY got my name right.

CLERK: Hey, I'm half. That's cool.

MAGGIE: I know. Mixed babies are the cutest. I am so excited.

CLERK: Yeah, you guys'll have adorable kids.

MAGGIE: Flattery will earn you nothing, bucko. What'd the President say?

CLERK: Well, it'll take a few days to get sorted out in our system, but they finally matched your Social Security number to your old name and now they've changed your name, even though-

MAGGIE: You know, I think I'm just going to trust Social Security on this one and assume that Banana Republic is the entity with its collective head up its ass, even though I've spent untold numbers of dollars in this store since I got married and you guys should totally know my name by now. Mmkay?

And then I spent MORE money. Some of it at the Gap where, instead of a Banana Republic credit card, I gave the clerk a piece of receipt paper with my account number handwritten on it. She raised her eyebrows at me. She said she had to call Banana Republic to confirm, because, you know, hello credit card fraud. Also, did I know she was in law? She was in law. People in law, obviously, should not be connected to credit card fraud. She made me sign a little statement at the bottom of my receipt. The next time I walk into one of those stores I fully expect to see my picture posted behind the counter.


Photographic Evidence

The wigs, the mayhem, the coveted Christmas Light Headband- it actually happened.

The China albums are now combined and I'm keeping the Kalispell album up because people still seem to look at that one, Young.

Also, the Internet needs to know that I uploaded these photos last night while discussing My Future via long-distance phone call, making tonight's plans via email, researching grad schools, watching The Amazing Race and baking cookies- cookies I had to separate into sections and roll into 8 by 6 inch layers which were then stacked, chilled and cut into chunks and baked for 10 minutes. The gifted bottle of Italian wine? It was finally opened. Because YOU PEOPLE HAD TO SEE THE PICTURES. Flowers and commendations may be sent to mightymaggie@gmail.com


We Figgied!

After an entire day of stomach butterflies, after worrying about rain, after getting a Figgy staff person to hurriedly fix the team sign so it read "Sassy Santa's: No Talent Required" instead of Wacky Aunt's name (and good GOD, Public At Large, when are you going to stop putting apostrophes where they don't belong?!?!), the eight of us plus our Prop Man, the groupies, and the nice ladies who held the donations box and passed out candy arranged ourselves in front of Sephora. Our backs to the audience, we flung on our hats and scarves for our first number- a cutesy rendition of 'Jingle Bells'- listened for the pitch, turned around and-

AACK! People! Everywhere! Listening to us!

Over 40 groups of over 800 carolers gathered downtown Friday night to raise $76,000 for the Pike Market Senior Center and Downtown Food Bank. That's about $20,000 more than they raised last year. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU to everyone who contributed either by mailing me shiny fat checks or by showing up to cheer us on and put your donation in our box. I will make good on that cookies promise, so if you donated Friday night and I didn't see you, shoot me a "Uh, hi Maggie, I know you're totally freaked about your Christmas party happening this weekend and about how you have too much furniture and not enough space for the 59 people you invited, but I'd like my cookies, please, and you can send them to (fill in address)" AND I WILL SO OBLIGE. In fact, there are cookies baking as I type. And they are YUMMY.

The Sassy Santas' (notice the correct usage of the apostrophe, General Public?) shtick was to dress all in black, but to throw on a prop for every song. After 'Jingle Bells', we put on our shades for '50 Kilowatt Tree'. At our first practice Dan was all, "Isn't this song GREAT? And I can totally do the lead and you guys can do the bop bop background and it'll be FANTASTIC!" and we were looking at him like, "Uh, right, well, we'll see.." and secretly thinking, "He has GOT to be kidding!", but it turned out to be AWESOME. Dan strutted his stuff while the rest of the group hung back snapping their fingers and crooning "doo wada wada!" after every phrase. It wins the award for Song You Will Never Remove From Your Brain. Also, everyone must now address him as LL Cool Dan because oh! the ladies could not help themselves from all the girly giggling when Dan took the spotlight. 

From there we moved into the Fifties (notice, General Public, that here we use 'Fifties' and not 'Fiftie's'), slapping giant pink bows on our heads and horn-rimmed glasses. Instead of imploring the audience not to sit under the apple tree, we asked them not to stand under the mistletoe while the Prop Man surreptitiously dangled mistletoe above our heads with his fishing rod. (We suggested to the Prop Man that he go out and dangle it over the audience, but that was SO mortifying to him- until I pointed out my two sisters in the audience and, well, it was okay to put mistletoe over THEIR heads.) Phillip broke out the saxaphone for our version of 'In The Mood': "Who's the chubby fella with the twinkling eyes?" And I win the award for Keeping A Straight Face when, during 'Mister Santa' when the girls sang "Mister Santa?" and Phillip said, "Yesssss?", I didn't trip over myself laughing like I did all through the dress rehearsal. Go me! Also, could Phillip be any cuter? Impossible. Well, totally possible, but not right that very moment!

The next song featured a sweatbanded Dan as Richard Simmons while the rest of us sang about 'The Most Fattening Time Of The Year.' Richard implored us to choose granola over cookies and fruitcake and once again, we must all give a hand to LL Cool Dan. Did I mention we had a crowd? We had a CROWD! There was honest-to-God APPLAUSE.

And for some reason, the crowd was energizing instead of terrifying when we pulled on our wigs and boas for 'Santa Baby'. I even used my diaphragm when I sang this song, people. We shimmied, we sauntered, and we thoroughly mortified my brother who sat on a planter across from us for our entire first set with a cocked-eyebrowed look that disdainfully said, "I can't believe I am RELATED TO THESE PEOPLE."

Our version of 'The Twelve Days of Christmas' ("The first thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me") got a lot of laughs too, namely due to Dan's indignance at hanging outdoor lights, Mark's repeated hangovers, and Wacky Aunt's turn as a spoiled whiny four-year-old. "I wanted a TRANSFORMER for Christmas!" Phillip maintained his dignity by singing, in a normal in-the-right-key voice, "And finding a Christmas tree" at the end of every verse. As he told me earlier in the week, "No, I like having the last verse because then they won't make me sing any of those silly campy ones." Ah, Phillip. I don't have the Ham gene either, but thank goodness we know people (and related to people!) who do. Otherwise would we have participated in the Great Figgy Pudding Caroling Competition? Which was super crazy fun? I'm not so sure.

Our last song was 'Baby, It's Cold Outside' (there are different rules for using apostrophes with 'it', General Public, and perhaps you should learn them), a sweet send off, the women all bundled up and the men channeling their inner Dean Martin. We ran through the set about three times before the hour was over and it was time for the groups that practiced more than 3 times to perform on stage for the THOUSANDS of people clogging the streets. We saw a group turn 'Silver Bells' into 'Flying Fish, those being the fish in the Pike Market, and a gang of the loudest most adorable kids shouting 'Up On The Housetop'. There were lawyers singing about their Favorite Things (clients with lots of money, judges who pass motions) and a labor group who used their song to promote free-trade coffee (on a stage next to a Starbucks, no less!)

At the end the Figgymaster went home to count up his buckets of dollars and the Sassy Santas took off for the Westin Hotel lounge for some self-congratulatory drinks. Wacky Aunt handed out awards (The Prop Man was "Most Supportive". Dan and Diana were the "Biggest Hams". And Phillip received 'Most Musical' as Wacky Aunt recalled the moment when Phillip asked for a metronome and she had to explain that we were "not that kind of group". Also, he insisted that we snap on beats 2 and 4. The rest of us were just lucky if we could sing in key.)

AND IT WAS SO MUCH FUN! We were so nervous we hid ourselves up on the monorail platform ten minutes before the show to do some last minute practicing, but nobody noticed any missed notes or askew props. We had a crowd the entire time and even if they were all assorted friends of people in our team, they were strangers to me. Besides, this morning at church a guy walked up to Phillip and told him he saw us at Figgy Pudding. We're famous!

Speaking of famous, I don't want to post any pictures till I get the okay from those on my team who are not attention whores like myself and disturbed at the thought of plastering their likenesses all over the Internet. In the meantime, content yourself with this lovely snapshot of the Christmas Spirit!

(And once again, a huge happy thank you to everyone who donated, stopped by, paid attention, or wrote me a "that's so great!" email. I love those emails! And even though Figgy Pudding is over (for this year, anyway!), you can totally send me more.)

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Been an angel all year

All the pink? Not so much. I wish I was a Photoshop Princess with a staff of cheery technogeek eunuchs scurrying about the Mighty Maggie palace building me a pretty pink masthead with excellent resolution. (The movie I watched over Thanksgiving was The Last Emperor and boy it'd be nice to have a fleet of eunuchs to draw my baths and comb my hair and do my general bidding, wouldn't it?) Oh, now I'm going to get people typing "eunuchs to do my bidding" into Google and finding my site and ew, those people can just flitter off, thanks. It was a joke.

So, kiddies, tonight's the night! After several weeks of positively glowing in my blond Marilyn wig and vamping it up in a bright red boa, I'm beginning to find myself horrifed at the fact that I will now be wearing the wig and boa in front of PEOPLE. People who will SEE me, in PERSON, and who, I KNOW it, will go home shaking their heads about that girl who humiliated herself in front of ALL OF SEATTLE. "That voice! Was a pig being slaughtered? And someone with her complexion? Should not go blond." What's worse is that I actually invited some of these people. I sent them emails that said, "Hey look at me! Look at me!" I told them where I'll be standing and they know what I look like, even in my Marilyn disguise. I cannot hide. I even have solos. What the hell was I thinking?

Also, it is freaking cold in my office and a certain person's toes are slowing turning to small pink popsicles, even though they are inside two layers of gray wool knee socks and stuffed inside sturdy weather-element-repellent black leather, also known as Maggie's Terrifically Awesome Boots. Do you know what this means? If my feet are chunks of ice INSIDE the office, what's going to happen when I'm standing OUTSIDE for two or three hours in the COLD and the RAIN. This IS December, people. My fingers will be okay inside the black mittens I found in the back of my closet this morning, but I haven't memorized 'Santa Baby' and how am I going to hold my script and do costume changes wearing mittens!?!?

"An Overactive Imagination" is featured prominently on my list of Characteristics of Highly Anxious Personalities...

But you know, I kinda feel like Mark in Empire Records. We mustn't dwell... no, not today. Not on Figgy Pudding Day!

Oh waitasecond people... "Santa Baby" just started playing on the radio! The song I sing while wearing the Marilyn wig and the feather boa! Do you know what this MEANS? This is totally a sign. A sign that I ROCK. But audience? No throwing your underwear. I mean it. And don't bother hanging around the tour bus when the show's over, because we'll be at the cast party all night.

Request an autograph here.