Friday, April 29, 2011

Sofa City, Sweetheart

Hello lambs.  I am en route to Tahoe so this post will be shart and sweet.  Kristal, Goody, Franny and I are getting away in hopes of taking our minds off the fact that we're not Kate Middleton... bum. mer.  btw, does anyone know if her bro is single? ok, have a stupendous weekend!  I will leave you with some funny pics:



Ed Shart right before Kristal and I flicked his bun

PS. Please stay tuned for The McGrubar Story... coming next week.  you will NOT want to miss it!

xo, Nige

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Bumble Bee Tuna. Your Balls are Showing.

I realized yesterday I really haven't elaborated much on fun/ interesting activities to partake in and around the Bay area. This morning, I attended my second Bikram yoga class and being around all those sweating, half naked bodies gave me a great idea for something to write about: HARBIN

Yikes, simply writing that word Harbin makes me feel very uncomfortable and like I need to take a long, soapy shower.  It all began on a hungover Sunday last May.  W, Shellyathon and I had spent a weekend at a friends vineyard near Napa.  Shellyathon was recovering from the flu and I felt tired from the night before (also, I was in a bad mood because I had lost another pair of shoes).  Wilhelmina was feeling repulsed and irritated after having spent the night amongst rat droppings on the floor in the house where we stayed.  We all agreed it would be wise to stop at a spa or somewhere of that nature on the way back. All the spas we called in Napa were booked but it was recommended we try a different location, just further south of Napa. Enter: HARBIN, or as I call it: BallzVille.

The following is a description of this "unique" place copied directly from Harbin's website. Sounds ideal, right?

Guests travel here from around the world to soak in the natural spring pools, receive massages or our famous Watsu, sun on the clothing-optional decks, practice yoga, attend workshops, hike the hills, or to simply relax in the embrace of nature.

Really, Harbin website writer? You think this is a fitting description?  Because I believe my interpretation of Harbin is a liiiittle more accurate:

Awkwardly shaped exhibitionists travel here from nudist colonies and sex communes to flaunt their unshaven, saggy body parts in the face of a modest, uncomfortable and awkward girl. (me.)

Do not get me wrong - I am very open-minded and tolerant of all different types of people - In fact, one of the things I love most about living in SF is my exposure to all these colorful, eccentric people.  That said, I would like for aforementioned colorful people to be CLOTHED

if only the bodies I saw were as picturesque as Harbin itself

Shelleyathon, W and I entered this "retreat" and we were immediately rendered speechless.  There were naked people everywhere: naked people basking in the hot springs, naked people having lunch, naked people drinking from the water fountain, naked people doing yoga, naked people napping... you get the picture.  It was as if God had thrown up a bunch of naked people from the sky.  And most were NOT people you hope to see naked. I consider myself to be an extremely modest person so for me, entering Harbin was like entering my own personal hell.

your balls are showing. oh my god. 

S and W had accepted Harbin for what it was and we headed toward the changing rooms.  I was pouting and nearly in tears but I had no choice:  We were spending the day at Harbin.  S and W had the balls (pun intended) to leave just their bottoms on with no top but I was nowhere close to where they were.  Like a rebellious little child I stomped my feet and refused to remove my skirt and black cashmere sweater.  (sidenote: it was 85 degrees outside) 

We walked around the retreat in search of a place to lie down among the old balls and saggy breastesses - and it occured to me that everyone was starring at ME.  Oh really, man with balls the size of Texas and more back hair than a gorilla on Rogaine? You think I look funny?  I stuck out like a sore thumb - nothing new for me I guess and I understood why I stood out - a black cashmere sweater in contrast with a pool of exposed flesh and balls does catch the eye I suppose.

i thought about hiding from all the nakeds in this temple.
The location was beautiful - I will give Harbin that.  We found a serene, tranquil spot to put our towels down and have a siesta.  I was sweating my balls off (again, pun intended) in my sweater but I somehow managed to fall asleep.  About thirty minutes later I woke up and about 15 feet away from me lay an 80 year old man - in ALL OF HIS ENTIRETY.  I think it took me about 20 minutes to realize that what I'd just seen close up was not a nightmare.  It's funny: this place claimed to relax people and curb their anxieties, not produce more.

Learning of the the natural spring water filling Harbin’s soaking and swimming pools we decided to take a dip.  Oh, I'm sorry - Wilhelmina and Shelley decided to take a dip.  I sat on the edge of the pool and dunked my head in the water - which caused quite a stir.  Perhaps the most vivid image I have of my Harbin experience is the 200 pound + woman swimming laps.  Each time she'd get to the end of the pool (where I was sitting) she'd do a flip and propel herself off the wall.  Needless to say, everytime she'd flip over I was exposed to her blow hole, so to speak.

this is where i spotted the blow hole about 46 times.
 I left Harbin feeling proud of myself for not having a complete meltdown.  Maybe next time I go I will remove an article of clothing.  (a sock perhaps?) 

Hope you all are having a strange day.

xo, Nige

PS. Mom, I'm sorry for using the B word so many times.  There was just no other way to describe them.

Monday, April 25, 2011


Franimal: this photo sums up our weekend
I had an awkward weekend (shocker).  I went into it with the best intentions: I was going to be healthy and try to do something good for humanity and accomplished both of these things… ish.  I spent Friday evening on the sofa with my friends Ben, Jerry and 3 DVR’d Lifetime movies.  Feel free to judge me; actually seeing this recollection articulated in writing makes me feel like Bridget Jones.  The only redeeming quality about my lame Friday was the realization I came to after watching Sleeping with Danger, starring Tori Spelling.  At least I’m not Tori Spelling.  Seriously Tori, I would have more compassion for you and your unfortunate mug if you were actually a good actress.  Also, I’m pretty sure a squirrel could store an entire forest's worth of acorns in the hole between your knockers resulting from your botched boob job.  The only person I feel worse for than you is your husband’s ex-wife.  Can you imagine being left for Tori Spelling?  That’s gotta hurt.  Ouch.

let us pause and ponder the unnatural space in between T spelling's twins.  At least it offers a place to put loose change, or an extra parking space, perhaps?
I went to bed early on Friday – knowing I had signed up to volunteer and garden with inner city kids at 9:00 a.m. Saturday.  (Or so I thought.)  That night I had the strangest dream: I dreamt I was vacationing in Hawaii with Justin Bieber.  I don’t know what’s more pathetic/alarming: the fact that I had a dream about canoodling in Hawaii with a 14 year old or the fact that I was actually disappointed to wake up and realize it was only a dream.  I'm scared a certain friend of mine who has a thing for younger guys may be rubbing off on me.  
I can dream about you... If i can't hold you toniiiight
Speak of the devil, on Saturday morning Kristal and I headed to a school in the Mission eager to to help little ones learn how to garden.  (We don’t know shart about gardening but figured we could start a mud fight, which would be more fun than planting hydrangeas or whatever.)  Kris (sidenote: I’m calling you Kris until you stop calling me Bunting – how does your own medicine taste?) and I showed up and were greeted by a young woman who seemed to be in charge.  “Hi.  Are you the volunteers?” she asked.  We introduced ourselves and immediately asked where the kids were.  “Oh, there are no kids,” she responded.  Perplexed and annoyed, Kris and I wandered around the garden bickfording for another 15 minutes and finally asked what we would be planting.  “Oh, girls.  You won't be planting anything, but you can have a strawberry from the garden at the end of the dayWe need you to unscrew these 50 pound decorations adorning the fence by the playground and move them to the basement of the school.”  DUMB and DUMBER, we took our wrenches and obliged.  (BTW, I’d like to thank Wilhelmina for hooking us up with this gig.)

someone get me an egg roll and a clue.
After about 25 minutes of scaling a fence, dropping exceeding amounts of F bombs by a playground, and unscrewing rusted bolts with wrenches, Kris and I decided it was time to make a move.  We “went to the restroom” and BAILED.  Kris e-mailed the woman and told her I had gotten dizzy and sick from looking up at the screws for so long.  As usual, her scapegoat...

Hi Becca, 
Sorry we had to leave; my friend was feeling nauseous/dizzy from scaling the fence and looking up at the screws, so I had to take her home. Thank you for the experience.
I am very sorry again.

After our failed attempt to change the world, Kris and I decided to do something healthy.  So, we walked from the perfect starting point, Perry’s, all the way across the Golden Gate bridge and back, totaling a 9 mile walk.  The last mile of course consisted of more bickfording because we were so exhausted from our trek.

hello operator

documenting our walk

"Bunting, do you know the name of this building?"  
"Um.. yes, don't tell me..."
Awk silence... "Kristal, what bar should we go to after our walk?" 
(My genius way of changing the subject without her noticing that I had no effing clue!

To Kristal's demise, I decided the only thing that would help make my day better was to go to Sephora and illegally get my make-up done.  (I promised I would purchase something over $50... Oops, left my debit card in Kristal's car.)  To my demise, I showed up to brunch looking like I just walked on stage at Asia SF... luckily, it’s San Francisco, drag queens are glorified here. 

After a fun lunch at Perry’s with F Fay and Casey we hit up Merengo.  This place is very very cool.  The back room has a glass retractable roof which can open up on a sunny day.  The sliders are excellent, as are their frickles (fried pickles).  Jake Grand ordered about 13 bottles of wine for the table.  So there went my attempt at having a healthy weekend.  I have discovered though, that drinking an obscene amount of water while consuming massive amounts of alcohol realllly helps keep Mr. Scary at bay.  (Sidenote: I am a freak of nature when it comes to drinking liquids, especially water.  I will go to a restaurant/bar and consume an average of 7-10 glasses of water.  I drink other people's water too and feel no guilt about it.  I call myself a walking aquarium because I simply welcome liquids down my throat.  That's what she said.  Sorry, couldn't resist.)

Merengo Interior

Merengo Exterior

After our wine fest we went to Gwendalyn's* house to have a dance party.  After a ton of headbanging to Mariah Carey's "All I want for Christmas is you" and some spills - sorry Gwendalyn for shampooing your kitchen with beer, we decided to hit the town again. 

We headed back to Perry's to celebrate J. McKenna's b-day which was actually a lot more tame than I imagined.  (Sidenote: I went to Perry's 4 times throughout the day: sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your shame.)  At about midnight Kristal, oops- I mean Kris, and I Irish good-byed, went to her place and ordered pizza, wings and breadsticks - BIG MISTAKE.  Waking up on Sunday and realizing the damage we had done, we hauled ass to Crissy Field and ran for an hour and a half.  (Another sidenote: I'm a really fast runner.  You wouldn't think that, would you?  Also, I love ironing.  You for sure wouldn't think that either, right?  Thank you very little for having no faith in me.)

We then ventured over to La Casa de Fay to celebrate Easter.  I should've gone to church/confession prior to Francesca's but I didn't have the time if ya know what I mean.  Here are some photos from our lovely Easter SundayFunday at FFF's.

FRANCESCA found the Golden Egg: and won her own money! not fair.

costume change (CKB ski suit)

annie was not feeling so hawt

i did an eggcellent job of collecting eggs.
After Franny's we headed to Tipsy Pig for Strawberry Fields and dinner.  Also, Eric and I called 867-5309 using different area codes until we finally reached some woman in Florida with these digits.  She must be so cool.  EIGHT SIX SEVEN FIVE THREE O NIIIIINE!

Have a sensational day.  xo, Nige

* Names have been changed to protect the innocent.

PS. Almost forgot! Birthday shout out to my favorite Tomothan ever in all the land: Leila Ann Shartsfield - I mean Hartsfield.  I love you Leilers!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Namaste, Nigel.

"I'm picking you up at 5:15 am for yoga."  I glanced over from my People Magazine at this text just as I was going to bed.  F!  Kristin and I had discussed going to a morning Bikram yoga class, but usually when we plan things like this we never end up doing them and instead opt for a boozey lunch at Perry's.  I was already irritated enough reading about J Lo's diamond encrusted toilet seat and to top it all off I now had to wake up in 5 hours.  "k." I wrote back.  (this "k" was drenched in passive aggression.)

Sure enough, the clock struck 5:20 and my phone began blowing up.  I stumbled out of bed, threw on some workout clothes and embarked on my journey.  This was my first yoga class and to top it all off it was BIKRAM.  I climbed into Kristal's car and our following conversation went a little something like this.

A: Hey.
K: Hi.  I told you to wear shorts - you are going to be so hot.
A: ugh.
K: Are you ready for this?  Bikram yoga is like the boot camp of yoga.
A: I got it, Kristin.  I know what it is. Jesus. (sidenote: I am not a morning person.  You could tell me I had just won a free life supply of egg rolls and I would still bite your head off if it was before 8 am.)
A: Why is this class an hour and a half?  I have to be at work at 8:30.
K: I KNOW BUNTING! Chill out! I told you I would get you to work on time!
A: YOU CHILL OUT, Kristin! And stop calling me BUNTING! I'm f-ing serious!

About 8 mins later...(8 minutes of tense silence)

K: Do you know where we are, Bunting?  (Kristin always gives me shit about my sense of direction, or lack of.)
A: YES! I know exactly where we are. Shut up. (I had absolutely no clue where we were.)

After some more bickering on the street we entered the yoga studio.  We were greeted by a flamboyant man with a bleached mohawk.  We introduced ourselves and I told him how annoying Kristin was being and that it was my first yoga class. "If it gets too intense, just get on your knees and breathe in." (that's what he said. sorry, couldn't resist) "And remember, don't sit directly underneath the heater," he warned.

SF peeps: I recommend this place.  its the best (only) yoga studio I've been to.

One of my main hesitations about going to yoga was my fear of being called out.  The minute we began class Flamboyant Mohawk Man cooed "Now, Alexandra: just listen to what I say and try and be aware of everyone around you but stay focused on yourself at the same time."  Damn right I was aware of everyone around me; the lady in front of me had her arse basically in my face.  She really took "Bend over and I'll show ya" literally. I then looked up and noticed where I was: right below the heater.  Flamboyant Mohawk Man continued to call me out throughout the entire 90 minute class.  But I was so hot and drenched I didn't care. 

...And I got to work on time. Also, I feel awesome and can't wait to try it again! 

Funny Photo of the Day:

I took this last Thanksgiving.  I flung creamed onions in my sister Elizabreath's hair and she walked around for an hour before she noticed.  But everyone else noticed and didn't think it was creamed onions....(if ya know what i mean). That's what you get for wearing a scrunchie, Elizabreath!

Have a stimulating weekend!! xo, Nige

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Don't Haight

One thing I am reluctant to admit about moving is how much I am going to miss living in the Haight.  Sure, it's filled with dirty crackheads and runaways but it still possesses this innate charm you don't see in other parts of San Francisco.  I am going to miss the schizo homeless man who almost always, without fail blows a snot rocket at 8:20 every morning when I walk by him. 

I did some research and watched a documentary on the Haight in the 1960's.  I learned all about the "Summer of Love" in which roughly 100,000 people descended upon Haight Street in the summer of '67 and lived among each other in a state of utopia and "free love."  Using LSD became the norm during this summer as well.  This might explain the aging, fried, homeless people who now populate Haight Street and all appear to have been avid participants in this LSD movement.  I tried once to interview one of these gentleman and after about my 5th question he began rocking back and forth and appeared to start foaming at the mouth so naturally, I bolted.
60's Haighters

Just when I thought the Haight couldn't get any freakier, I was exposed to 4/20 on Haight Street.  I de-boarded my bus yesterday evening (which lets me off right in the center of the Haight) and was immediately bombarded with dirty, dirty, dirtaaay people crowding the streets - smoking blunts and donning Grateful Dead shirts.  What in the F was going on?  I then realized it was 4/20 and everything made sense.  I, of course stood out like a sore thumb - I was wearing a pantsuit having just come from work and resembled Ellen Degeneres.  Awkward.

me (in the background) with LSD head

Living in this area has certainly made me more open-minded and tolerant of other people.  It also makes me realize how fortunate I am to have more than 3 fingers (unlike the gentleman pictured above).

Here is a compilation of photos I have put together to help commemorate my past 2 years of living in this truly unique 'hood.

i took this pic yesterday; doesn't really do the mayhem that is 4/20 on Haight street justice
hey weird lambchop

me w/ Janis Joplin tree; she is said to have written a lot of her songs under this tree

the lushier (is that a word?) J Joplin tree
kristal chats with a Haighter
loss of words
i really enjoyed bringing my ole miss pals to the haight

Ok, I'm out.  Have a snooty day.  xo, Nige

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Come waste your time with me...

Good morning lambchops!  I thought I'd start of the morning by sharing with you this dealbreaker of a FB message and emoticon picture I received this morning from someone I do not know (re: my Bieber profile pic).  I now invite you all to take a short quiz:  Can you count how many dealbreakers are in the following message?

ur going far . . .


too bad Kobe is not in great favor right now or else you'd be sittin' pretty between 2 stars :: smart move to cut the Kobe out for now :: Justin is now giving his talents to good causes :: he's a good kid :: YOU make them look good :: keep beamin' gurl :: reach for the stars :: cheers !

Thank you for the entertainment, Bill.  Anyway, there must be something in my Cheerios this am because I have agreed to sign up for the Alcatraz Sharkfest Swim.  My brother is swimming it with me and is allowing me to use his membership at the Dolphin Club to train.  This is going to be a real challenge for me but I am pumped!

I am discovering how quickly I am running out of ideas of things to write about and since it has taken our intern Shellyathon so long to deliver this weeks feature piece I am having to use a recycled note I wrote on FB a while back for today's posting.  Without further ado: here are 25 randoni/ stupid things about yours truly.  Sorry to be self-indulgent I am just having serious writers block today. And by all means, if you have any funny anecdotes/ideas/awkward experiences please do share them with me! ( xo, Nige

I drink mainly out of jars.
1. My ring tone was once a “yawn symphony.” Every time someone would call a chorus of yawns would blare from my phone simultaneously. It made for some interesting moments, especially when someone would call during class or church. Not that I ever really attended either.

2. My mom was born in Venezuela and grew up in Peru. Her first language was Spanish, although she never raised me bilingual. Her entire side of the family lives in Argentina and Peru. My cousins sometimes talk about me in Spanish. It makes me feel tense.

3. I can do the best Ace Ventura and Friday impression this side of the Mississippi.

Take care now, bye bye then

4. My brother won Fear Factor. Very random.

Josiah covered in rats on Fear Factor

5. I have lived in 3 cities in the past 4 years. So far, San Francisco is my favorite.

6. I went to boarding school for 5 years and spent most of that time on dorm restriction with Moira making mixed tapes and trying to dodge our wretched dorm mother who was obsessed with Mickey Mouse.

7. I was a huge Charles Barkley fan as a kid and had a poster of him on my ceiling above my bed. This concerned my parents.
Sir Charles

8. I get really agitated when people are vague about something or don’t give me details. When this happens I have a tendency to ask millions of questions. You just can’t give me popcorn and say no butter.
Add caption

9. I used to want to be an actress but could not conquer my stage fright, unfortch.
One time, at Ole Miss, I was in a play and got so nervous I screwed up my lines. Never been on a stage since 

10. I watch movies and shows over and over again. I have watched the Pam Anderson, Flava Flave, and Dennis Leary Roasts on Comedy Central at least 18 times each. I’ve seen Planes, Trains and Automobiles at least 106 times.
my favorite comedianne, Lisa Lampanelli roasting Flava Flave

11. My car in college smelled like crayons. Brooke used to say it smelled like a purple one. I am not sure what she meant.

12. One night in college after the bars I spent 45$ on egg rolls from the Chevron in Oxford. My roommates posted the receipt on our fridge and it was so long it almost touched the ground. You know Hansel and Gretel? Well, instead of bread crumbs you could find me (sticky and confused) after a night out by following a lingering trail of sweet and sour sauce.

13. Gun’s and Roses is simply the best. The greatest. Despite Axl’s corn rows, botoxed mug and rift with Tommy Hilfiger he will always be my hero.

14. Head banging is my number one indulgence. I can always tell I’ve had a good night when I wake up with a crick in my neck.

15. I have never held onto a debit card for longer than 2 months. I simply don’t think I was meant to have one. I am convinced that they are all on an island somewhere far away enjoying my predicaments.

16.  My dad is an author, among other things.  He has written 8 books- one of which was Time Magazine's top 10 best novels.  I suggest you read his books.  I read one and it was awesome.

17. My favorite place to go in the summer is Newport, Rhode Island. I’ve been going there since before I was born. That made no sense – I’m glad you caught that. My favorite restaurant in Newport is Salvation CafĂ©. Their shrimp pad thai is fantastic.


18. I am very good at pointing out awkward situations by simply singing loudly “awwwkkwaaarrrd!!!” There’s nothing better than turning up the awkwardness. It’s refreshing.

19. I thought of the name Nigel freshman year at Episcopal. My friend Kristin Smith woke me up one morning after she had just washed her hair. I woke up, saw her, and the words just came out: “Hi Nigel.”

20. My greatest fear is being left alone in the middle of the Atlantic at dusk with a gigantic blue whale circling me. Some people think sharks would be scarier. But they just don’t get it do they Sarah?

21. I set aside my staightener and went on NOLS in Australia the summer before junior year. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done; leaving behind my straightener, that is.

22. I’m really good at acting interested in what people are saying even though I’m dreaming about Haribo gummie bears.

23. It’s Kinky. But I like it.

24. I babysat a pit bull for a summer in college. Leila Ann and I sissified him and changed his name from Harley to Marley. He tore up my back yard, ate Mills’ bday present and is responsible for Tabitha* getting a DUI. He was a real terror but we loved him nonetheless. *Names have been changed for legal purposes.

25. Good bye. Call me.  xo, Nige