Monthly Archives: March 2010

Karaoke Fun

As I blogged about before, we celebrated my pal’s dirty 30th birthday by singing terrible karaoke in Federal Hill.

Unfortunately the bar was lacking in Hall & Oates choices (I was really hoping for You Make My Dreams and was very disappointed) but I think we more than made up for it with a variety of other terrible (and awesome) songs.

There aren’t a ton of pictures from that night but I thought I’d share 2 (courtesy of Meredith and Terri).

First off – the bar was sort of quiet in terms of karaoke participants so at one point, I think I was singing several songs back to back.  And by singing, I was more like YELLING the lyrics but whatever. 

One of my absolute favorite songs to sing is “Islands in the Stream” (Dolly Parton & Kenny Rogers).  Can you guess whose part I sing?  Kenny f’n Rogers.  I’m not sure how or when this was established but anytime I sing a male/female duet with Kristin – I get stuck singing the guy’s part.   This happens with any song from Grease and the fantastic Kid Rock & Sheryl Crow song “Picture”. 

I apparently give off a man vibe.

Anywho.

Picture of me singing karaoke. Singing as Kenny Rogers despite not actually being a dude.

When “We Built This City” (by Starship) came up – this was probably the third song in a row that I was singing.  And I was heckled!  2 douchebags proclaimed, “oh god – you again?  You’re killing us!”

That would probably explain why this picture below has me looking confused as opposed to singing anything.  I was pretty peeved because I was singing fucking karaoke… not trying out for American Idol.

Picture of me singing karaoke.

We don't actually look like we're singing anything. We look quite confused.

 At one point, one of the douchebags Kanye West’ed me and took the microphone and started giving a shout out to his buddy.  Um… what?  When he gave the microphone back I was sure to give the birthday girl a big shout out (much to her dismay).

But that dude really fucked up my karaoke mojo.  He pretty much killed my spirit and I stopped singing for the rest of the evening.

However, I think the entire bar was probaby happy to not have me butchering anymore songs and I was able to actually talk to people.  I didn’t really hang/chat with too many friends because I was too busy singing. 

Have you karaoked?

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Mr. Rain’s Funhouse Brunch – A Review

My very dear friend turned 30 over the weekend and to continue our celebration (we karaoke’d our hearts out on Friday) – we hit up Mr. Rain’s Funhouse in the American Visionary Art Museum for brunch on Sunday.

Before even suggesting this location, I swore that I had seen a TON of vegetarian options here so I didn’t bother to revisit the menu before brunch.  I mean – its brunch.  There will be waffles and stuff, right?

Wrong.

I don’t want to imply that I had a bad meal – I think I was just caught off guard by the super fancy and unusual brunch menu.  I was also surprised that there was only ONE vegetarian brunch menu option.  ONE.  for brunch.

Anywho.

I liked their centerpieces.  They were peacock feathers in this weird metal twisted tube thing.

Picture of the centerpiece at Mr. Rain's Funhouse

We kick started our brunch with some drinks.  Most of us ordered the classic bloody mary ($9).  Just an FYI – there is no clam sauce (yay!) and they use ginger.  It was good but I really prefer my bloody mary spicy.

The birthday girl ordered a mimosa ($9) and she liked it.

Picture of a mimosa drink and a bloody mary drink.

The drinks were garnished: orange peel on the mimosa and an olive in the bloody mary.

Jeremy and I both got an order of the curried crepes (seasonal vegetables, bulgur wheat, chevre – $14) since it was the only vegetarian brunch menu item (outside of a salad).

Picture of curried crepes from Mr. Rain's Funhouse restaurant.

Delightful but not breakfast-y.

It was REALLY good.  However, I prefer (and Jeremy said the same thing) my brunch food to be more breakfast-y.

I don’t remember what anyone else got but I do know that they had kimchi pancakes with the bday gal’s meal.  And the pancakes were good!  Not as good as from a Korean restaurant (in my opinion) but still good.

I’m not sure if this review seems like a positive one for the place.  I thought it was good, just different.  It was also a tad pricey.  We spent $100 in drinks alone (2 drinks a person)!  I’ve always been accustomed to “all you can drink” bloody mary/mimosas at other brunch establishments.

Anywho – after brunch, we popped into the AVAM’s gift shop.

Picture of "beer goggles" and "champage glasses" from the American Visionary Art Museum gift shop

Jeremy's got beer goggles and Theresa's got champagne glasses.

Picture of "Happy Birthday" glasses and margarita glasses from the American Visionary Art Museum gift shop

Happy Birthday! And Jeremy's ready for some margaritas.

Picture of a two-headed baby doll from the American Visionary Art Museum gift shop

My what an adorable baby you have there. Yikes!

Apparently if you become a member at the AVAM, you get 10% off your meal at Mr. Rain’s Funhouse. 

Would I go back?  Sure!  Was I a little disappointed?  Yes, but am I not disappointed about something.  I tend to have really high expectations about certain things (like restaurants).

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Dirty 30 – Another Friend Turns 30 Today

Today is the birthday of a few friends of mine but most notably, it is the birthday signifying the FIRST of my close friends turning 30 this year.

And how are we celebrating?

KARAOKE, baby!

Duets Movie Still

While it would be cool if Gwyneth Paltrow and Huey Lewis were singing karaoke, sadly this is just from their movie about karaoke (Duets)

Last year at a friend’s 30th birthday, I decided it would be a great idea if I just drank whiskey on the rocks all night.  My thought process was that I could just sip one drink all night long.

About 4 drinks later, I blacked out and woke up to see vomit on my bedroom floor.  Not my classiest moment.

So I won’t be repeating that performance this year especially since I am the type of karaoke nerd that prefers to do it completely SOBER.  That’s right.  Drinking and getting super excited while screaming the words to “We Built this City” just leaves me out of breath. 

(Starship Video link)

I prefer to not feel like I’m going to die while singing my heart out.  I really feel that it takes away from the performance.  And I can’t rob the people of me butchering “Hungry Like the Wolf“.

(Duran Duran Video link)

I’ve been thinking of a good song to sing to my pal turning 30.  Any suggestions?

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A Weekend of Good Eatin': Samos and Great Sage

So while I am bummed that I didn’t attend FitBloggin‘, I am happy that I got to hang out with good friends Friday night and my old college roommate on Saturday.

Friday night – I met up with Katie and Stacy (and their dudes) for dinner at Samos.  It is a delightful Greek restaurant in my neighborhood.  If you’re in the area – GO THERE!  But FYI – they only accept cash.  Another fun FYI – they are BYOB.  They charge a small fee for BYOB but its still a hell of a lot cheaper than when you order a bottle of wine from a restaurant.

Samos Restaurant - Baltimore, MD

We all split an appetizer spread of tatziki, hummus and olive tapenade.  Magic!

I ordered the Greek Pizza without any meat (so it was comprised of tomato sauce, feta, mozzarella,artichokes, onions and olives for $10.25).  I didn’t pay attention to what anyone else got but my pizza was delightful.  I used to order the vegekabob until I found out (from one of the servers) that the rice is cooked in chicken broth.  Boo! 

Anyways – I love this place.  It gets packed very quickly so I recommend going early to beat the rush or be prepared to wait awhile.  I don’t think they take reservations either.  You go in and you write your name down then wait for your party to be called.

Now onto Saturday with my old roomie…

Despite not having lived together for 8 years – she will always be my college roomie because (1) she was the ONLY college roommate I ever had and (2) we had a blast living together and have lots of crazy stories from it.

Anywho.

She currently lives in Silver Spring and since I live in Baltimore – we met in the middle for lunch.  It was a great opportunity for me to go to Great Sage – a marvelous organic vegetarian/vegan restaurant in Clarksville.  And lucky for me – Angie was totally game for it too.

It was also GORGEOUS out so we wanted to eat outside.  Of course the patio was packed but we decided to wait it out and got an appetizer at the bar.  And I must say, the staff at Green Sage is AWESOME.  So awesome that I am willing to make that drive again and again.

I didn’t snap any photos because well… I forgot.  so I’ll just briefly chat about what I ate:

As an appetizer, I didn’t want anything too heavy (I had a big dinner the night before) so we split the MEDITERRANEAN HUMMUS PLATE:  house-made hummus accompanied by dolmas, artichokes, kalamata olive tapenade, roasted onion, crudités and toasted naan bread. $11

For lunch, I ordered the ROASTED VEGETABLE WRAP: Roasted vegetable medley of eggplant, red onion, zucchini and sweet potato with balsamic reduction drizzle, mesclun greens and chickpea hummus in a grilled flour tortilla. Served with Kettle potato chips. $9.50

It was f’n awesome.  I was presented with a plethora of marvelous things but I really just wanted a nice light wrap and this totally hit the spot.

Angie ordered the TERIYAKI CHICKEN SANDWICH: Teriyaki glazed ‘chicken’ on toasted naan with spicy Asian sesame slaw. Served with wasabi roasted potatoes. $10

She said she really liked it and I believe her because she doesn’t lie. 

We also split the RAW CHOCOLATE MOUSSE: Extremely rich, powerful and silky smooth, made with raw cacao, Tahitian vanilla and agave nectar. (Gluten free, RAW) $7

Holy shit – I am in love with this dessert.

I realize this isn’t the best post since I don’t have any photos to accompany it but trust me – this place is awesome!  I can’t wait to go back.

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A Second Opinion (my first visit to physical therapy)

After getting a hard time from a large number of people I know (and even some random commenters on this blog) – I decided that I should look elsewhere for help with my lower back.  I mean – my chiropractor told me not to do yoga (and while I agree that yoga could potentially hurt you if you’re pushing yourself well past your physical limits, overall I disagree that yoga is bad.  I just can’t accept that).

I got some prodding from my manager (actually – I think he told me that I was being “bone-headed”) about seeking true physical therapy for my back pain.

I called up a rehabilitation center (recommended by my manager) and they suggested that I get a referral from my general physician (just to make sure my bases are covered in terms of insurance coverage).  So I made an appointment with my sort of general physician.

She asked me a series of questions and poked my butt cheeks (and all over my back) to find pain.  She also asked me if it burned while I peed.  After I got over being offended (what was she implying?!) – I found out that back pain can sometimes be related to urinary tract infections.  So there you go – fun fact for the day.

My doc confirmed a lower back strain and prescribed a muscle relaxer and some prescription strength ibuprofen.

Today was my first visit with the physical therapist.  And it was magic.  He massaged my back, hooked me up to an electric stimulation machine (with heat) and gave me some back stretches to do as “homework”.  One of the recommended exercises was the yoga “child’s pose” move and this is something the chiropractor told me to avoid!  WTF!  When I told the therapist this he rolled his eyes and said, “That just doesn’t make any sense.”

There was more conversation around my visit and why chiropractic care works for some things but not all as well as other issues I may have with weak muscles, tight hips, etc. but I won’t bore you with the details.

I’m just hoping that I’m on my way to a full recovery and that I can go back to leading an active and pain free life!  Oh – and I hope to start yoga soon especially since I purchased a one month unlimited yoga coupon for Charm City Yoga!

Lastly – this weekend was gorgeous, wasn’t it?  Despite my shithead neighbors (and these are ones I haven’t complained about before) trying to argue with me and Jeremy over parking, I had a marvelous weekend.  I even went for my first OUTDOOR jog on Sunday and managed to cover 3.5 pain free miles.  Wahoo!

I asked the PT if I should avoid running but he said that as long as I’m not in pain that I could keep it up.  I like this guy even more.

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Crap – ology

I saw this meme on some random blog I was reading the other day (and I really don’t remember… I come across tons of different blogs but this was definitely a blog that is not a regular for me) and thought it was a cute meme and an easy way for me to post something without actually thinking of good clever content.  So there – I’m lazy.  You caught me.

FOODOLOGY:
What is your salad dressing of choice? Any type of vinaigrette
What is your favorite sit-down restuarant? It really depends on my mood.  I love Indigma. Akbar. TeaVolve. Liquid Earth.  I really could go on and on.
What is your favorite fast food restaurant? Panera and Noodles & Co.  They count, right?
What food could you eat every day for two weeks and not get sick of?  Pizza.  Green monster smoothies. Kimchi. Falafel.
What are your pizza toppings of choice? eggplant, artichokes, onions.  Yum!

BIOLOGY:
Are you right-handed or left-handed? Right.
Have you ever had anything removed from your body? A mole from my left arm.
What is the last heavy item you lifted? My 24 lb nephew.  And I ended up re-straining my lower back muscle.  Ouch!
Have you ever been knocked unconscious? Yes – twice.  Once playing racquetball (the ball hit me in the head) and another time playing basketball (the ball hit me in the head).  Needless to say – I try to avoid games where balls are thrown at my head.
Have you ever fainted? No but I’ve gotten light-headed quite a few times.

BULLCRAPOLOGY:
If it were possible, would you want to know the day you were going to die?  Heck no!  That’s almost as bad as knowing HOW I’m going to die.
If you could change your name, what would you change it to? I wouldn’t.  I used to hate my name but it has family sentiment behind it so now I can’t change it.
How many pairs of flip flops do you own? 5, I think?  I just got rid of some.  I’m trying not to buy anymore (just saw a sale on Havianas!)
Last person you talked to? My co-worker (she sits right by me)

FAVORITOLOGY:
Season? Fall!  Cool weather.  Pretty colors.
Holiday? My birthday! New Year’s Eve!
Day of the week? Saturday.  I can sleep late in the morning and stay up late that night because I don’t have to go to work the next day.  Yippee!
Month? July – my birthday month.
Color? Depends on my mood but I usually go for blue.
Drink? Pineapple juice.
Alcoholic? Depends on my mood.  Right now?  I’m totally digging the pickle back shot.  I usually go for champagne though.  Or red wine.

CURRENTOLOGY:
Missing someone? Not at the moment.

What are you listening to? the sound of my keyboard keys clicking.
What are you watching? My computer screen.
Worrying about? Everything.  I’m a person full of worries and doubts.
What’s the last movie you saw? Did You Hear about the Morgans?  It was a Netflix rental and it was TERRIBLE.
Do you smile often? Yes! I smile to say hello. I smile when I’m happy.  I smile when I’m in pain (because I’m laughing to keep from crying) and I smile when I’m nervous.
If you could change your eye color what would it be? Blue.  Right now they are dark brown.  Very evil looking.
What’s on your wish list for your birthday?  Oh geez – what isn’t on my list? 
Can you do a chin-up? Heck no!  I dangle from the chin up bar like a wet noodle blowing in the breeze.
Does the future make you more nervous or excited? Excited but partially nervous.  There are things I want to do and I worry about not doing them.
Have you been in a car wreck? Yes.
Have you caused a car wreck? Yes but in my defense, I was only 16!
Do you have an accent? Nope!  And if someone dare says I have a Baltimore accent – I will punch them.
Last time you cried? Tuesday night watching Precious.
Plans tonight? Going out to dinner with good friends (Katie and Stacy… and their dudes) and hopefully out and about in Baltimore tonight.  I love the Spring is here!
Have you ever felt like you hit rock bottom?  Yes – running the marathon.  I was in so much pain (between my knee and my quads) that I wondered what the hell I was thinking when I signed up… but then when I finished, I thought, “I wonder when I’ll run another one.”
Name three things you bought yesterday?  Blueberries, raspberries and pickles.  Not to be used together, of course.  (okay – so I actually bought these things on Wednesday but that was the last time I bought anything).
Have you met someone who changed your life?  Yes.  My husband.  (aw – did you just gag a little?  what can I say – he made me a nicer and less hateful person.)
For the better or worse? Better.
How did you bring in the New YearWatching the lights of the Eiffel Tower.  And while that sounds totally romantic and awesome, I should say that I watched the lights of the Eiffel Tower expecting to see a fireworks show start at any minute.
Would you go back in time if you were given the chance? Sometimes I like the idea… like to tell me I should get cooler looking glasses in middle school, stop perming my hair in elementary school, to avoid dating a turd – but then whose to say it wouldn’t change my current life?  So no.
What songs do you sing in the shower? I hum in the shower… and I hum whatever is in my head.  Lately I’ve been humming Hall & Oates “You Make My Dreams”
Have you held hands with someone today? Nope.
Who was the last person you took a picture of? My dog, Petie:

Are most of the friends in your life new or old?  My very closest friends are old but I’d say the majority of the people I hang out with (whenever I venture to leave my house) are all fairly new… like post-college new but that is still like 5+ years ago.  Do uh… both?
Do you like pulpy orange juice? No.
Last time you ate peanut butter and jelly?  Crap – I honestly have no idea.
What were you doing at 12 a.m. last night? Sleeping.  Geez – it was Thursday!  I get up at 5:15am during the week.
What was the first thing you thought of when you woke up?  I have to pee!
How many televisions are in your house?  4
What color cell phone do you have? – It is black but I bought a Gelaskin for it so there is a picture of a whale:

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Local Celebrity?

Wahoo – I’ve gotten my 1 minute of fame in a local Baltimore free newspaper.  So maybe that doesn’t even get me 1 minute.  10 seconds of fame, maybe?

It started with me seeing this tweet:

Then I googled the Bang – and saw that it was about Sex/Relationships so I sent them a message saying I was interested.

And man, he wasn’t kidding about the fast turnaround time.  I saw a link to today’s paper and there I am (the bottom):

I made Jeremy go find a copy of the free paper today.  If you live in Baltimore – be sure to grab one and I’ll happily autograph it for you.

Ha!

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