Pura Vida

I can easily recall many scenes in movies where the main character is frantically searching for something, or trying to escape from an enemy, and suddenly she stubs her toe, or trips and falls, only to discover something very important located right where she lands. The flashlight! The gun! The secret escape hatch! Dramatic moments like these don’t happen to me on a frequent basis, but in line with the overall theme, I have been made privy to how an unexpected disruption can lead to something previously undiscovered.

When I was in Costa Rica a few years ago, I was alone in my room just after dusk, when the electricity went out. My dad and I were in a relatively remote area of Monte Verde, and there was little moonlight. I had a hard time seeing even a few inches in front of me, and even if I had slightly improved visibility, the next nearest building was a difficult uphill trek even in broad daylight. I was not about to attempt it alone at night in the dark. Let’s face it; I’m not the most surefooted individual in the world.

I began to search for my cell phone to try to generate a little more light, and found my way to the window where I opened the curtains, hoping for illumination. What I saw instead were the most exquisite remnants of the sunset, sinking behind the silhouettes of nearby trees.

I fumbled for my camera and managed to snap a series of pictures through the window in an effort to capture this display. It lasted only a few minutes before again stranding me in cave darkness, but I felt fortunate to have witnessed such a fleeting moment of serenity.


I understand, but I don’t get it.

When I left the gym yesterday it was member appreciation night. In addition to free chair massages and a few booths set up advertising healthy lifestyle choices, the gym had purchased several pizzas and was serving slices free to members. Granted, pizza is truly not that bad for you, considering many of the other temptations available to us, but it’s also not generally a snack recommended for maintaining a healthy weight.

A dentist doesn’t give you a Snickers when you leave, a counselor won’t tell you to hang out with people who have caused you pain and a teacher won’t tell you to go spend endless hours watching cartoons. In general, people don’t facilitate the demise of what they have worked to correct or prevent.

I was discussing the irony of the situation with Jen as I drove home and she noted that her gym does the same thing but gives out hot dogs and steak on their version of member appreciation night. My first thought was that my gym is lame because they don’t distribute fillet. My second thought was what on earth is wrong with these places throwing high calorie foods at members struggling to shed pounds.

As Jen put it, she could understand that pizza is cheap, and that people like free stuff, so the gym probably put those two facts together to generate the idea for free pizza night. That said, we can’t get how this actually happens. Are carrot sticks and granola bars that much more money than hot dogs?

Phrase coined: “I understand, but I don’t get it.”

The more you think about it, the more this sentence explains every battle of head verses heart. You can often times logically understand why something has occurred when viewing it in black and white, but once you progress to think of it in a gray area, it can be difficult to fully grasp the reasoning behind something.

Even dictionary.com seems confused here. To understand: to have a systematic interpretation or rationale, as in a field or area of knowledge. To get: to acquire a mental grasp or command of; learn.


Tonight Jimmy and I celebrated our two year anniversary. Such a special night together and such an amazing meal at our favorite place, Cafe Boa. We had two flites of wine, and as an appetizer we shared a huge cheese board with dates, nuts and fruit. I had pasta with shrimp, artichoke hearts, cherry tomatoes and a goat cheese cream sauce. Jim had a Kobe beef burger that was amazing.

I love the extra touches this restaurant puts in. Sprigs of rosemary tied around the napkins, olives and hummus as a starter with your bread, it’s all delicious. They also have the best servers of any restaurant I frequent.

So Fresh and So Easy

I have mentioned before how much I heart social responsibility, (it literally warms my heart) and it’s great to see that some mainstream retailers and grocers are taking a huge step in the right direction. The picture here is of the recycling receptacle I saw at Fresh ‘N Easy this weekend.

I am no manufacturer but this could not have taken too much time or money to create, and could be easily customized to suit different stores. Maybe prisoners could make them since most states have segued away from inmate-crafted license plates.

Why oh why doesn’t every store in America have one of these? Even if only every other store had one, think of the bags, bottle and cans destined for a landfill that would instead be recycled.

Come On Get Happy

In college I was a frequent visitor to the Gold Bar in Tempe. I used to head to this unique coffee and tea house to pretend to study. I generally spent all my time texting or people watching but it was a solid effort on my part to do the studious/urban outfitters/emo thing.

I went tonight to meet Keri and it was great to be back. I had one of the best teas I have ever tasted and it was called Get Happy. It was decaf so I guess that means happiness is not derived from caffeine. I think the tea made me happy, as well as the half pound slice of carrot cake I tried.

To get an idea of the charm of this place, located literally in a parking lot, check out the Top 10 list they have on their Web site:

Top Ten Reasons for Choosing Gold Bar Espresso:
10. We don’t have naked ladies on our cups.
9. We have loyalty cards that’s like a 10% discount.
8. We never have to close to retrain our staff.
7. We do not assult your ears with cds we’re trying to unload.
6. Our coffee is fresh roasted by people who know what they’re doing.
5. We have live jazz and classical guitar on the weekends.
4. Our caring staff want you to have the best drinks possible.
3. We have dog bones for your dogs.
2. We have granita…fresh and frozen without using ice or powder. They have blended drinks, blah and diluted.
And the number one reason for chosing Gold Bar…
1. We don’t charge you more for the GOOD coffee.