blogs home > janaka's blog search blogs | log in to view / update your blog

The Aunts
Monday October 22nd, 2007 10:19 AM
Halloween marks my aunts' 20th Anniversary. They bought a house in connecticut, which legalized civil unions a few years ago, and they were married in October 2005. they have everything - dog, cats, a nice house, a sauna, great vacations, nice cars, and i think in a few months they will have a child. Needless to say, I talk to them about everything, and i don't know what i would do without them. Things I got from my aunts:

My first encounters with big dogs and sweet cats, leading to my love of all creatures big and small

The knowledge that Rosie O'Donnell was a lesbian before everyone else knew. ditto that for Queen Latifah, too

The meaning of the terms: more than hellos, the salt and mustard club, fresh meat, denial is not just a river in egypt, family, bingo.

The knowledge that you may be all butch on the outside, but man, you sure do cry easy

My love of the indigo girls - aunt jodi handed over the rites of passage cd to me when i was 14 and it was all over. 11 shows in 11 years and sightings all over atlanta, which is where i live and where they are from. Coincidence? you decide.

My first trip to Provincetown, which included Jana's first drag show...which creeped me out, but i got over it and now...i love drag shows!!! I love drag kings and la la. Hello to Justin, Chase & Bianca!!!

My politics, and insight to the fact that one may not be able to conform to the definition of normal which society dictates, you can still be phenomenally smart, successful, happy, and you can love & be loved, it doesn't matter what anyone else thinks

Big parts of the jana have been influenced by their relationship, and I think that my crusty old right to life republican father is a better man because of the aunts. I suspect he is not so right to life or republican as he wants everyone to believe he is. you know - like Dick Cheney? LOL

long may they ride.

81 Days of Water Left
Thursday October 18th, 2007 09:11 AM
This morning on the news, it was reported that Atlanta and most of North Georgia has a supply of water that will last for 81 days.

This makes me incredibly sad, and it SCARES me, which says a LOT coming from a person who was an eyewitness to September 11. Not much phases me, and yes, I do take safety precautions (I have mace on my keychain and on my bedside table) but I do not fear much.

One of the attorneys I worked with in New York called me a crunchy granola girl because I wanted to start a recycling program for the office. I have been laughed at and looked at funny because I bring cloth bags with me when I shop. My landlord thinks I am weird because I rake the leaves and then instead of throwing them out bring them to the urban gardener for compost. My neighbors look at me funny when I bring "garbage" (ie, eggshells, popcorn kernels, coffee grinds) outside to my own compost heap. Then, they wonder where it all went the next day when it has been consumed by the critters and the earth.

So, being that I am the Jana and I am who I am, which means I am concerned about the state of the world and the fact that polar bears are drowning because of melting ice, which is caused primarily by global warming, which is caused by humans, of which I am, I challenged myself this morning to get ready for work WITHOUT running the water ONCE.....

and I did it. I left the house relatively clean (I used wet ones, deodorant, mouthwash and water that I had been saving for the plants) and arrived to work on time. the receptionist even complimented me on how nice I look today.

Since we have been in this drought, I have been very water conscious. I live alone with two cats, which means I can get away with flushing the toilet once a day. It sounds disgusting, but it's not, and it is 25 gallons of water per flush. At work, we have the toilets that flush automatically, but I opt to use the one that you need to flush when you are through. I place a bucket in the shower and use the runoff for the plants. I turn off the water when brushing my teeth. I turn the water on in the shower to soap up and to rinse off. Oh, and since the weather has been cooling off, I have been showering every other day.

My father once told me when I was a little girl "waste not, want not" and I am trying to live by that. I only wish more people would do that. So, if you are an Atlantan, I am challenging you to NOT RUN YOUR WATER ONE DAY A WEEK until we are out of this predicament! If I can do it, you can do it. You need to think about the big picture. For every action there is a reaction. I could go on but I need to go get coffee.

Be well, my peeps, and may the force be with you.

The Simple Things
Wednesday October 10th, 2007 08:45 AM
Some think it's all about the bling, but even all the bling in the world won't make a person happy. What is happiness to you? Since I love my get crafty sistas, I would like to share a few simple things that brought me happiness in the past few weeks.

The aunts will be celebrating their 20th anniversary on halloween, and I went to Outwrite and found this card....perfect! :)

My friend Jen is having her daughter's first birthday bash at the end of the month. :)

My cashier at Whole Foods was named Romeo. The picture is blurry, but believe me when i tell you that the bottom line at the end of the receipt says "Your cashier today was ROMEO." :)

On that trip to Whole Foods where I met Romeo, I bought 6 brown large organic eggs from the Country Hen. Look!! The hens are cage free and get to hang in sunlit barns and porches!!!

I took a vacation day last wednesday and went to the zoo, spending quality time with Mei Lan and her Momma and Daddy.

Also, put this together. And finished this and this and started the target bag.

Maisie and Ghost say meow to everyone at get crafty!

Peace Love Mei Lan &'s all you need. Oh, and cats, too.

In Memoriam
Tuesday September 11th, 2007 09:27 AM
The following piece was written in July 2002, as a response to a friend's writing group assignment - the topic was "the visit".


On Sunday, September 9, 2001, I boarded a bus headed for the Port Authority in New York City. I had arrived home just one week earlier after spending one year in Australia. Although I was jetlagged and getting over a massive sinus infection, I was totally looking forward to my visit with my old friend Stacy. We had been friends for years, and I had not seen her in two and a half years. Freshly unemployed after the dotcom she worked for went bust, we would both be spending the week interviewing.

It was great to see her. We went to a Mexican restaurant called Blockheads on 31st and 3rd. We had a few beers and caught up on all the dirt. Stacy let me in on all of the agonizing details of what it is like to work for a company that is slowly going out of business. “Band of Brothers” premiered that night on HBO. I distinctly remember Stacy saying “I just can’t comprehend jumping out of an airplane into an unknown land – and what about the people that live there?” as we watched the Greatest Generation fight World War II.

On Monday, September 10, 2001, I had four interviews. It was a hot, muggy day and the people I met with had no kind words for me whatsoever. I pounded the pavement, all over Manhattan. I sold myself as best I could. I filled out form after form and did test after test, and went back to Stacy’s disheveled and disgusted. Stacy’s response “welcome to my world”. We ordered in that night as it poured down rain. We discussed our interviews for the next day. Stacy gave me some pointers, and told me that the interview she had scheduled for Tuesday morning was rescheduled until Wednesday afternoon, at a marketing company way downtown near the New York Stock Exchange. I told her that I would be heading down to the Financial District myself the next day and we compared companies.

On Tuesday, September 11, 2001, I woke up really early. Stacy was asleep when I left, and I wrote her note with my schedule for the day so maybe ‘we can meet for lunch’. When I hit the street my first thought was “What a beautiful day!” It was sunny and cool, a far cry from Monday. I stopped at Au Bon Pain for a cup of coffee and a croissant. I hopped on the E train at Grand Central and took it to 53rd and Lex. I emerged at around 8:30 a.m. My interview was not scheduled until 9:30, so I decided to sit and enjoy the weather and drink my coffee until 9:10 a.m. At 8:45 a.m. I began to vibrate – like you know when you are at a concert and the music is turned up so loud that you can feel it inside you? – this is what I felt, except there was no music. I turned around to see a big truck parked directly behind me. I looked up and I saw a plane. ‘damn that plane is flying low’ methinks. And then – it went really quiet. I looked behind me and saw the truck driver turning the dial on his radio – he could not get any reception. I knew something was wrong. I just knew. The usual hum of the city was not there – you could hear the silence.

I grabbed my things, checked my appearance and went inside. I was waiting for the elevator with about 4 or 5 other people when a tiny little black lady with dreadlocks dressed in corporate attire passed us and said , “A plane just hit the World Trade Center.” I just stood there like an idiot. Someone in my group said “What happened?” And she said, “A PLANE JUST HIT THE WORLD TRADE CENTER – THE WORLD’S GONE CRAZY”. My group of people slowly went into the elevator. A woman in her mid fifties ran in at the last minute. Someone made a comment like “I can’t believe it.” The last woman into the elevator said “What?” A lady told her ~ and that, I think, was the last ‘normal’ moment of my life. The last woman in starting to sob and said “omigod, my son works at the world trade center – I can’t go to work!” She composed herself, and got off at the 31st floor, and then I left the tiny box. I was 36 floors up and very early for my interview. I sat down and told the nearest person – a computer techie – what happened. His response “that is like every person, who has a fear of flying, worst nightmare come true.” Yes, yes, what a terrible accident. An attorney came out and announced that the pentagon was burning. I heard that and I swear, I could feel my heart drop to my feet. another attorney came out – another plane hit, you can see the smoke. another plane? finally, nelly, my interviewer came out, we chatted and then she stuck me into an isolated room, with a computer and a phone. I went to work, finished my test, and tried nelly’s extension 3 times I kept getting her voicemail. for some reason, I called stacy. “WHERE ARE YOU?” she screamed….I’m at my interview, 53 and lex, she said “I think you better get back here RIGHT NOW.” “okay, okay, I’m leaving.” (stacy never ever reacted to anything, not in all the years I know her). I left my little room and ran into chaos. People crying, people running around. An over weight black woman asked who I was looking for and then nelly appeared, “Jana I am so sorry, but one of the towers collapsed” I remember saying , I have to go, I have to go. I ran out of there and against my better judgment took the elevator.
I ran out of the building into more chaos. millions of people heading north. a woman begging for food. barnes and noble closing. people lining up at atms to get their life savings out. people on line to use the payphones that were not working. people with their car radios on doors open and more people standing around listening . bumper to bumper traffic. I turned down 50th Street towards 3rd ave. people trying to use their cel phones. nothing working. I take mine out anyway and have one message, takes me the better part of my walk to stacy’s to hear my mother assuming that I was dead. a mother frantically dragging her three year old down the street ‘mommy what happened?’ ‘I dunno, sweetheart, we are going home and turning on the tv’. stopping to use a pay phone. nothing working. talking to a young black man who tells you that he just walked from the New York Stock Exchange and saw everything – how do you fathom a plane going into a building? stopping at a magazine stand run by an Indian man to buy cigarettes and a Snapple and only later on that evening realizing why he was so nervous. Making a right turn onto 2nd avenue to meet no cars. to be able to see clear down the avenue as the second tower collapses on what you had considered to be a beautiful day. to be able to hear, from a mile away, 110 stories shatter to the ground. walking in the middle of second avenue, because, you figure, IF ANY OTHER BUILDINGS FALL, AT LEAST I WILL BE ABLE TO SEE THEM COMING DOWN. arriving back at stacy’s apartment to see the events, which I will not detail here, as they played out. looking at stacy and stupidly asking if the people were jumping into the firemen’s nets. mom’s voice full of relief as she realizes her only child’s interview at the world trade center was at 1pm on 9/11/01, not 9am. the look on stacy’s face as she tells you, no, jana, I don’t think so. not being able to cry because your old friend who never reacts to anything is most definitely reacting to this. being numb. going onto the deck because you can’t watch one more minute of tv and seeing an F16 circling overhead. getting glued to the tv. stacy freaking because the canceled interview was across the street from the trade center “what would I have done, jana? I don’t know that part of town so well” “Stacy, you would have been okay. You would have run, just like everyone else did, and you would have been fine.”

twisting her arm to go out---to deserted streets, where guys are playing football in the middle of intersections, where everything including mcdonalds is closed, where you can see the smoke, where people are just walking around simply staring at each other. staying up all night. stacy thanking me for being here ‘you have to sleep in my room’ stacy trying to get money, but there was none to get. your friends from around the world emailing to make sure you are alive. watching the trucks heading downtown with the generators so they can spend the night, and the next night, and every night, digging. giving those guys the thumbs up. standing in line for 8 hours to donate a pint of your o positive blood. trying to figure out whether or not we should run, as there is a bomb scare at the empire state building 5 blocks away. jana hyperventilating, stacy dragging her outside then both being driven back in as the smoke has reached us and can only be described as ‘walking into chemistry class after another class blew stuff up’ stacy trying to get the meaning out of 9/11 ‘maybe, like 9-1-1, an emergency?’ listening to all the stories the paper flying. people searching for loved ones that were incinerated upon impact. ‘where is the mayor? oh. okay. as long as he is all right, we will be too.’ begging stacy to turn off the news, watching the golden girls for 30 seconds, then inexplicably needing to flip back to the news. “Who the hell is Osama bin Laden and what the fuck does he want with my city?” “our skyline….it’s just totally changed…it’s gone!’ the awful realization of the magnitude of what has happened, as you begin to take in what you witnessed. passing the national guard and the police on every corner. dogs. lots of dogs. every moment expecting another bomb…..saying to my friend with the ultimate sadness, “now we know how the Israelis feel.” no air traffic, save for the f 16s. The queen’s guard playing the national anthem of the United States of America at Buckingham Palace. the candlelight vigils. the sadness of the mayor, the silence of the city. being told to go out. watching helplessly as 4 liberty plaza falls to the ground. watching three of new york’s bravest hoist the American flag over the remains of the World Trade Center. Stacy and Jana finally finding something to laugh at, and being given dirty looks because this is not the time for laughter. sorry. Finally learning all of the words to God Bless America. Our world stopping because of a madman who lives in a cave.

It has been almost nine months since I visited my dear friend Stacy. Since then, we have both found jobs, have both flown on planes, and have both revisited the places we were that week. I still have my moments.

I refer to Stacy as my 9/11 friend, my emergency friend, because that is when I happened to have visited her – and I don’t know what I would have done without her.

intown - it's not an address, it is a state of mind.
Wednesday September 05th, 2007 12:00 PM
i moved to virginia highlands, which is a funky area of atlanta filled with indy shops, pubs, restaurants....and my new knitting place!!! yay for kim @ Knitch. Kim not only focuses on quality yarn, but she caters to spinners and dyers, and is opening an upstairs dye room tomorrow. i've not ventured into the world of spinning and dying as yet, but my interest is definitely piqued and i'm looking forward to learning. the best part is that i have met and re-met some good people, fellow knitters...the kind that don't insult every person who walks by based on their appearance because they are uncomfortable with their own....what a breath of fresh air - one of them is related to George Washington!!! how cool is that?

the best part about living in the highlands is that i get to walk everywhere, even to knitch! i can walk to the restaurants and pubs, i can even walk to my friend troy's and piedmont's great. being that i am from new york and used to walking, it is a real treat after being in the car sitting in atlanta traffic to be able to walk...i can walk to the library, too!

i took an intro to pilates class at my yoga place last weekend. there was a lot of information involved, but i liked it. i will take another intro class just to be sure i haven't missed anything. i have also re-discovered my love of live music, after seeing amy and emily totally rock out at the atlanta botanical garden....i swear, i buzzed off that show for two weeks. i have started to frequent eddies attic which, ironically enough, is where amy and emily began....i have really enjoyed discovering new talent - the near misses, adrianne and blue mother tupelo.

i am an urban dweller, after all. no more suburbs for me. aaahhh....even maisie and ghost love it....they are very chatty and love the fact that i have been composting and keeping petgrass on the ledge for them!!! LOL. my knitting and creative stuff haven't fallen by the wayside but have become less of an obsession. do i want to go out, or do i want to sit on my butt and knit all night? the answer is easy. i wanna go out!!! but the knitting is there when i return. :)

Grr...tales of why people suck....
Sunday August 12th, 2007 05:30 PM
From the "why people suck" newsdesk:

The top tale of why people suck this weekend goes like this:

steamy sunday here in the a-town today, wasn't planning on doing much until i discovered that water is draining into the tub....and i don't have a plunger. so i hop in the j-mobile and drive to lowe's. i park. i get out of the car. it is overcast but near 100 degrees. i hear barking. yep.

two cars away from me there was a little pug locked in a black avenger, barking it's little head off...and who could blame him? it is hot inside and outside. i called the police while other people stopped and lamented. "how could they do that?" "it is so hot!"

i waited until the lady came out of the store and i asked her to please not leave her dog locked in the car on a day like today. i told her that it is cruelty, and that i called the cops on her. she told me it wasn't cruelty, she had only been inside to do one return. i told her if she kept leaving her dog in the car on 100+ degree days, pretty soon she wouldn't have a dog.

yep. people are so fucking dumb. i don't think i will ever stop being surprised by how dumb they really are. i am waiting for the day someone proves me wrong, and it hasn't happened yet. and i am not holding my breath, either.

and the number 2 story of how people suck:

I work for a Japanese company, and one of my co-workers is young, just got married, just got his degree at Tech and brought his wife over from Japan. He has a lot on his plate and recently rented a condo near atlantic station that he and his wife just moved into in the middle of June.

Well, you know what? The owner of the condo went into foreclosure on July 3, one week after my co-worker signed the lease!! No notice was given to my co-worker or his wife until they were served with AN EVICTION NOTICE today!!! They have to be out by August 26....there are so many things wrong with this scenario, i don't even know where to START.....

The property management company saw my co-worker as a foreigner and totally took advantage of him. They had to have known at the time he signed the lease that the owner of the condo was going into foreclosure, as these things don't just happen overnight. yet they took his deposit, they took his rent for June, July and August.

Sigh. I apologized to him, on behalf of all Americans who would never DREAM of doing something like this to a person.
the good side of the story is that justice will be done...i can't talk about it until it is resolved, but i am sure things will work out and work out well for my co-worker.

What Tori Amos song are you, ladies?
Tuesday July 03rd, 2007 04:28 PM
Which Tori Amos song are you?

Cornflake Girl

Never one for conformity, you've gone to the other side. But where'd you put the keys, girl?

Personality Test Results

Click Here to Take This Quiz
Brought to you by quizzes and personality tests.

where's your spot, ladies?
Tuesday May 15th, 2007 04:53 PM

i belong in oregon. i somehow knew this, and i am thinking that i am going to move in september, even though i just started this job, and i only have a ten year old car to get me there. i am done with the south. i need some fresh air, some space and some culture.

but, i finished the girlies blankies, and i will felt the gigunda bag tonight. I also am looking forward to meeting new knitting friends at a meetup group that i found here in atlanta. i am finishing sort of goes with my theme right now.

i am going to blow the gre on saturday. i know this, so why am i taking it? I don't know if i even want to go into the peace corps anymore, but i am still going to finish the application. i know what i want - i want to move to oregon, buy a small house and get a bunny, a lamb, some chickens, and a piggy. that's what i i guess i need to finish all the other stuff up now, huh?

oh, and i didn't get indigo girls tickets because they sold out about 5 seconds after going on sale. yeah. so i will go to the botanical gardens with my knitting and my lounge chair and i will knit and listen to the indigo girls. yeehaw.

indigo girls, ceramics, b&w, japanese, knitting and yoga..
Monday May 07th, 2007 02:10 PM
it's all happening my beautiful get crafty chiquitas.....

amy and emily will be playing at the atlanta botanical gardens, end of july. can anyone go with me here in atlanta? of course not. will this stop me from going? of course not.

debating on whether to do ceramics or b&w photography this summer.....decisions, decisions.....would love to do both but there are not enough hours in the week for that to happen.

i am going to take a few japanese lessons starting this wednesday - one of my co-workers is going to teach me basic conversational japanese.....yay.

knitting: (get ready, it's scary) - one bag which i started in OCTOBER, yes i said OCTOBER...., one tank top that i started oh, about a year ago, one blanket i started in august. um, and then there is yarn on tap for a baby blanket (for my friend in NY who is due on September 1) and i am working on a mini baby blanket for my girls.

I'm going to the renaissance festival on sunday (YAY), the gre is coming up in 2 weeks, and then i am starting applications for my MLS....oh, and did i mention that i love my yoga teacher? her name is kquvien, which i never heard before. she has millions of tattoos and animals, and she ROCKS. and did i mention that i am also going to submit some of my photos for a theme show at one of the art galleries here in the atl? coolio. yee-haw.

still need to get a kayak, a digital camera and a nano.

and, i decided that i want to buy a house in the country, and have some chickens, a goat, sheep, a cow, a dog, a bunny rabbit and my cats. i am hoping that this will happen if and when i retire.

it's not new york. it's noo-yawk.
Wednesday April 18th, 2007 04:40 PM
at least, that is what it's like when you are me. what about y'all?

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The Northeast

Judging by how you talk you are probably from north Jersey, New York City, Connecticut or Rhode Island. Chances are, if you are from New York City (and not those other places) people would probably be able to tell if they actually heard you speak.

The Inland North
The Midland
The South
The West
North Central
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

< >
this blogall blogs