Saturday, February 27, 2010

Polar Bear Plunge 2/27/10!

Today was the big plunge day! I'm currently sitting in my sweats after a steaming hot shower trying to defrost my limbs.  Let's just put it this way; the air and water were f'ing freezing.  Like, really really flipping freezing.  Sadly, the sun decided not really to show up today...but that didn't stop 300 participants from taking the plunge anyway on behalf of the amazing kids and adults the Special Olympics benefits :)

As promised, Zach and I dressed up in "Jersey Shore" gear for our costumes.  Behold, Pauly D and Snooki:

I even purchased the wonder that is the "Bump-It" for the occasion.  I tried to pay for the Bump-It in the back pharmacy check-out of Walgreen's, thinking that would be less embarrassing somehow...but my plan was mega foiled when it wouldn't ring up on the register and the pharmacy tech thus had to shout to her manager "Mina! How much are the Bump-Its? No...a BUMP It...Yea the hair thing..."  I swear my life is a cartoon at times. I can't decide if it was the best or the worst $10 I've ever spent in my life;

A Special Olympian gave an adorable speech before the countdown letting everyone know how much the program has meant to her over the years and expressing her gratitude for those participating today... which was so sweet to hear.  She also announced that this year we'd raised $131,000 (and counting as people were still donating today) for the Northern California Special Olympics...$10,000 more than last year!  Recession or not, people are still reaching deep into their pockets to help a good cause.  Generosity gives me goosebumps;

I tried to capture the true Snooki spirit by doing gymnastics to the music (including a flash of the panties aka bathing suit) and fighting back the beat...not a bad view in the background!;

When it came time to run into the water they announced our team as "GTL, Baby!" and I got so excited when the announcer said, completely unprovoked, "which of course stands for Gym, Tanning, And Laundry...which you won't be getting any of today!"  Here is me and my fat butt (dang girl, time to hit the gym...too much of a Snooki booty) cheering when he correctly identified "GTL";

The crowd was too big for Nik, my trusty camera gal, to get a shot of us actually getting in the water...but she sure did grab a few gems once the frozen/in shock/drowned rat version of myself emerged...prepare yourself...I'm cracking up....

I basically squealed and screamed the whole time in the water.  Since we were the first ones in (we wanted to get it over with!!) we ended up getting a bit trapped by the following crowds in the bay much longer than we had anticipated.  Some (most, actually) folks didn't go under water but we figured if we were going to do this, we were going to do it all the way.  Thus, my Snooki bump-it was a sad, wet sight post plunge.  Is this how she looked after her hot tub antics? I love that Aubs told me I looked more like Amy Winehouse than Snooki because I'm not orange and 'a twig'.  It's kind of ironic that I chose Snooki for my costume since when, on the wet walk home, these 2 blonde bitches stared at me with their judgey eyes and not-so-whispered 'what.the.hell is she wearing'...I turned around and shouted "It's a freaking costume! Snooki? No? Keep staring, whatever..." in my most Jersy-esque accent.  My neighborhood is occasionally too vanilla for my liking.  Might be time to explore less yuppy hood options....

Thank you again so much to everyone who donated to my was truly a fun experience and I'm so grateful for your support! Love!!



Tuesday, February 23, 2010

It's official. It's love. Part 2.

I think I love taking the bus.  It's not always very clean and sure, occasionally you'll run across the Asian woman with a nasty swine flu-esque cough who doesn't seem to grasp the idea of covering her mouth while hacking. Or the drunk old man who awkwardly shouts "San Francisco! The city of all kinds of races!" each time a black person enters the bus as if it's 1950 and he expects them to sit in the back. Or maybe even the child who decides it's completely socially acceptable to try and pee in the corner...(I have experienced all of these)...but overall, the bus can be a pretty clutch spot for people watching.  With my ipod on it can even be relatively relaxing and distracting and calming.  Plus, I never get tired of the tiny old ladies whose feet don't touch the bus floor:

I also love clutch interactions with the quirky folks that call SF home. Just last week I rode the bus and encountered Calvin O. Davis, an adorable, super skinny, elderly black man with either teeth so small I couldn't see them or just a total lack of toogles in his mouth and wearing pinstripe pants.  He was holding on to the grip above where I was seated when our conversation began;

Calvin, in a perfectly smokey voice: Hello there. Do you like poetry?

Me: Hi! Yep, sure do.

Calvin: Oh well I'm Calvin and I'm a poet...(pulls out 6 sheets of slightly crumpled computer paper stapled together from his little filing kit) is some of my work.

Me, taking the papers: Cool. Let me read.

Calvin, pointing to the second page: That one is a loooove poem...(*sigh*, shakes his head slowly)....loooove...

Me: Ok I'll read that first...Calvin, are you selling these poems?

C: Yes m'am I am. $5. But I'd take anything you can offer. It all helps. That's my email at the bottom

Me: Hm, well I need $2 to take the bus again later...but can I have the poems for this other $2?

C: Oh yes, yes...thank you lovey. You can email me anytime. I enjoy sharing my work. Words are powerful and beautiful...yea...gotta share your thoughts...gotta spread the truth.

Me: Agreed.

The last page of Calvin's 'poem packet' contains a bit of a bio which includes the facts that he works to help end homelessness in the city, is a self employed "Tourist Information Guide", used to train and manage a number of IHOP's, and uses the computer lab at the St. Anthony's Foundation Learning Center to do work on his fifth career as an artist. So cute. My favorite stanza from his poem "One Day At A Time";

So now we see our own individuality has been responsible
for the uncertainty of our peace of minds. So let me
suggest that we neutralize our indifferences and realize that
we are all one.

I love that San Francisco does a lot to bring awareness to the homeless population.  Regardless of how they got to that point in their lives, they're still people.  It's sad to see them struggle while having so little. Makes me feel grateful for what I do have. I mean...they're still people. My friend Lindsey's good buddy Sean is the photographer/videographer for this Tenderloin project, which is pretty fascinating and also strangely beautiful;

If you have time, watch at least this video.  The part where Flash compares people to his orange is simple and great:

The Tenderloin Project x Black Scale from Sean Desmond on Vimeo.

I also love that so many people don't care much what others think about them, including what they wear. If they like it, they wear it.  If it makes them happy, they wear it. So many quirky fashion freak flags flown high as the sky. I really love it:

the neyPod:

City & Colour- the whole album, Bring Me Your Love, is amazing. "Sleeping Sickness" will rock your world. Promise.



Sunday, January 31, 2010

Three Cups of Tea...and various other random thoughts.

I have nothing else to say in this post besides this; I'm 10 chapters into my new book Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin (sent to me as a Christmas present from my darling girl Kelly) and I'm literally having to pace myself so that I don't fly thru it and miss out on truly absorbing the beauty of the story.  Read it!

OK, fine, I have a few more things to say.

1. I'm a vegetarian now.  I know, I know...Tricia Louise DiGaetano, the girl who once ate a cheeseburger for lunch and dinner everyday for 8 days straight (yes, that'd be 16 cheeseburgers in 8 days) in Las Vegas in the first grade (my parents begged me to eat something else but I was a woman possessed) has now given up meat. I guess officially I would be considered a pescatarian since I still eat fish, but c'mon...salmon will never come close to beef.  I wish I could pinpoint what exactly caused me to make this switch all of a sudden, but I think it really just has been something I've considered trying for a long time.  Living in San Francisco just  makes it so much easier since there are tons of vegetarian and vegan options around.  I've slipped up a few times (oh, this is bacon in my new england clam chowder?) but so far I'm not doing too badly.  I also recently snagged a book from the library called Eat Right 4 Your Type which discusses different diets based on blood type; the first sentence of my Type A chapter states that we thrive on being vegetarians!  I like to think of this as a good sign.  I will state right up front, however, that even if this vegetarian kick ends up sticking I will always make a meat eating exception for two things; 1. my mom's amazing meatballs and 2. the occasional Wendy's chicken nugget.

2. I'm addicted to my crock pot.  My mom gave me a recipe book of just crock pot meals and I'm in love with it. Nothing says home made goodness than a feast made in a slow cooking pot.  Tonight I'm trying out a butternut squash soup recipe that I'm hoping makes me positively squeal in delight.  If it's a winner, I'll post the recipe :)

UPDATE: I just tasted the soup. It was awful. Mega fail.

3. I'm getting another tattoo in the next 2 months (that is my get-the-courage deadline). Pictures will be posted, and in response to my sister sighing "But why?" on the phone...because I'm bad ass and I do what I want.

4. People's social network internet behavior has been irking me more lately than usual...especially if they are over the age of 16.  And if you are 30, I really cannot help but smh you (smh = shaking my head).  There is no excuse for your lameness.  These are two of my biggest irks. I am about to get snarky;

           1.  When you add a smiley face to your facebook posts or statuses please put a space in between the smile and the words/punctuation.  This looks ridiculous:  Can't wait to see you:)!  Also, you don't have to add 3 smilies to one post.  We get it, you're so cute and happy. This looks ridiculous: Can't wait to see you:)! Thinking good thoughts for you:) Love you:)

          2.  You are a grown up.  Love is not spelled luv.  Words ending in 'ing' should not be ending in just 'n'. You is not just u.  This looks ridiculous: Can't wait to see u:)! Thinkn good thoughts for u :) Luv u:) ....Twitter is a different story because you only have 140 characters, but on facebook I truly expect more from folks.  It's not endearing that you talk like a 14 year girl.  It's embarrassing.

Thanks to all of my fabulous, kind, generous and supportive friends I have reached my goal of $500 for the Special Olympics Polar Bear Plunge!  I am *so* fortunate to have people in my life who step up for me.  Also, my costume  for the event has been decided...drum roll please.....Snooki!!  Yep, I'm gonna bump-it my hair, spray tan, wear a too tight outfit, and carry around a pickle.  And since Zach is such a good sport, he is going to be Pauly D...blow out and all.  Our team name is GTL, baby.  Life is good.



Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Polar Bear Plunge!

In the spirit of new beginnings I'm kicking off 2010 by diving (literally) right into every adventure I can get my hands on; starting with the Polar Bear Plunge in San Francisco that benefits the Northern California Special Olympics. Can I hear a collective "brrrr!"? I have yet to decide what my costume will be (this is San Francisco, after seems that all events here are enhanced by flamboyant costumes and outfits) but I have a few ideas in mind.

In addition to my love of new and exciting things, I'm participating in the plunge for another important reason. My sister very actively volunteers with the Special Olympics through the barn where she boards her horse, so my family knows first hand how great this organization is. Belle always speaks so highly of the participants and is amazed at the connection the kids make with the horses. It's so touching to see their excitement, the confidence they acquire and the pride they feel over competing.

Knowing how dedicated she is to the mentally and physically handicapped community I wanted to do something to support the cause on her behalf. As part of her Christmas present, I've signed up to freeze my ass off in the Bay next month to raise money for this cause. I love that little bug so much I'm willing to have my nipples get so hard I don't know that they'll ever un-harden. That may sound creepy to some people, but that's why I don't love those some people as much as I love Belle.

Here is a slightly edited cut and pasted piece from the Special Olympics Polar Bear Plunge site to help give you a little info on the event;

Special Olympics provides year round sports training and competition opportunities for children and adults with developmental disabilities. But it is so much more than a sports program. It is training for life, empowering these individuals with self-confidence and self-esteem that carries over into their every day lives. What is most amazing is that Special Olympics is free to all for over 13,000 Special Olympics athletes in Northern California! It costs approximately $500 to support one athlete's participation in Special Olympics for an entire year, so I've set my fundraising goals at $500. The opportunities Special Olympics provides to people with developmental disabilities is truly commendable, which is why I want to show my support by being a part of the Polar Bear Plunge. The funds I raise will go a long way to ensure that Special Olympics continues to enrich the lives of the developmentally disabled children and adults in our community for many years to come. I realize these are financially trying times for many (I've started obsessively collecting change and keeping it in a piggy bank, trust me I understand 'tight budgets') so I thank you in advance for any support!

Follow This Link to visit my personal web page and help me in my efforts to support Special Olympics.



Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Do You Viv?

My new gal pal Jessica told me about a pretty fabulous (free!) program in San Francisco called Viv this week and I can't wait for my Viv stickers to come in the mail!  In a nutshell, you put a Viv sticker on your credit or phone or wherever and you have it scanned at businesses that are a part of the Viv community.  Then Viv will send you eco-friendly 'gifts' like energy efficient light bulbs and share specials with you!  All of the businesses involved are committed to creating a more sustainable world.

In their words:

So how does Viving help communities and the environment?

  1. We Keep it Local - Viv exposes you to more local businesses who are invested in their neighborhoods. Lets face it, a healthier local economy results in happier communities!
  2. Behavioral Change - Viv makes ethical choice more accessible by making "good behaviors" more visible. You'll notice that many of our businesses offer enhanced specials when you do things like bring a reusable shopping bag, or show your bike helmet or bus pass. By rewarding positive action and making it more transparent, good gets mainstream!
  3. And Beyond- Suffice it to say, there's more in the mix and we look forward to unveiling a whole lot'a "good clean fun" real soon. Stay tuned as this gift keeps on Viving!
Thanks Jess, can't wait to start Viv-ing!!

the neyPod

Any song of Otis Redding's....he's amazing and I'm so glad I rediscovered him in my music library :)



Saturday, December 26, 2009

mini rain dance

I just walked about 8 blocks to my apartment in the rain with Passion Pit's "Manners" album playing on my iPod.  I don't know if it was the drizzles on my face, the great beat in my ears, the excitement of going home to Pyramid's Audacious Apricot Ale and left over baked mac n cheese, or a combination of all of these things but I literally could not contain myself from stopping multiple times to dance a bit on the sidewalk (with a huge shit eating grin on my face to boot).

I know I've never been a particularly shy person, so this is certainly not shocking Tricia behavior.

But there were definitely plenty of other people on the street (walking and driving).

These people definitely could see me.

I definitely looked ridiculous.

And people definitely did not seem to mind at all.

(I may have even opened my mouth to catch a few drops before entering my building...)

I love my city. I loved the rain today. I love "Manners".  I'm so thankful for such a silly 8 blocks.



Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Holidays, from the shoebox of memories!

It's been a while kiddos.  Apologies to all 3 of you who read this and have probably been completely lost in life due to my lack of banter.  I could come up with a hundred excuses as to why I've been m.i.a. but instead I will just say lo siento, happy holidays and dive right into the blogging...

If you hadn't realized already from previous posts, I come from a family of slightly sentimental pack-rats.  Us Diggy's tend to hold on to things...a lot of things...that mean something to us, and over the years the pile of 'things' will grow and grow (as briefly explained in my earlier "Living Lighter" blog posts). To keep myself from drowning in a sea of 'this is special!' I have to to do my regular closet cleanings as well as allow for only one shoe box full of letters, cards and photos (as these are always my most favorite keepsakes).  Just like with my closets, I have to occasionally open up the ol' shoebox and gut it of some of the contents to make room for the new.  I thought perhaps you would enjoy some of my favorite findings during yesterdays shoe box ....

1.  A "crush" poem written by a high school friend of mine, whose name I will not reveal because...well....just read it and you will know why.  And before you get all huffy about how I could post this on a public forum, please note that he's a great guy and would totally understand that it's posted with nothing but love and is all in good fun.  Also, I haven't blogged in over a month and this is good material to reengage my 3 readers.  Desperate times....:

Dear Tricia,

Great job! You were awesome in the play!  The following is a poem I wrote for you.  It is an attempt to express my feelings.

Night after night, I lay awake,
Thinking about what it will take
To be together with only you.
That would be my dream come true!

I was once told, to be a good actor,
At a young age you have to be a big sensation.
It hasn't happened for me, but I know it will
One day, because I have you as my inspiration!

For every performance that I do,
I always dedicate it to someone new,
However, this year whether it was a
Football game, or theatric production,
They've all been dedicated to only you.

Your beauty is so great and so grand,
If you wanted to, you model
For Abercrombie & Fitch or any other
Famous clothing brand.

When I hear your sweet soft voice,
And see your beautiful, angelic smile,
I seem to forget everything in the world,
That is ugly, repulsive and vile!
Listening to your voice is wonderful music to my ears,
Honest to God, you're more beautiful than Britney Spears!

I wish I may, I wish I might
Maybe you and I will go
Out on a Saturday night!

Now as all things do, this poem begins its end.
And I know you'll always think of me as just another friend.
That's okay, that's all right,
I just want you to know my feelings for you will always burn bright.

From,  (name removed for privacy sake) 

P.S. Did it hurt, you know, when you fell from heaven?

2.  Have you stopped cracking up yet?  I probably should've saved that one for last, but I needed to captivate you early on :).  Ok so #2...this was a joke 'crush poem' written by a good friend in college (at least I'm pretty sure it was a joke). It makes me giggle to read it now but at the same time I have to say it's oddly flattering in a weird way if I try and take it some-what seriously.  I feel very eerie admitting that.  So be it.

Your body leans, enshrined by a glow,
shapely and graceful, but nobody knows,
the secrets you hold, tucked behind lock and key,
most take what they can get, but not me.
I bet there's more beside your milky silk skin,
as smooth as the peach colored shirt you're wrapped in.
The world hears your whispers quiet, your laughter, 
and sees your smile,
maybe you were perfected through trial.
You haven't known me for long, but this should be trusted,
I really don't hate Jersey, and I just got busted.
But it's alright,
getting you to stay for even a little bit longer last night,
was my delight.
So in closing, please believe,
I hate to see you go, but I love to watch you leave.

3. My college roommate and I were mildly obsessed with the cartoon website all four years at PSU...particularly the character of Strongbad and his emails.  If you've never been to that site, make your way over when you have several hours to's hilarious, weird, and addicting.  The *best* Strongbad email ever on the site can be found here (and if you don't think this is funny, you should never come to my blog again because you clearly do not get me as a person):

As part of her THON dancer mail to me in 2006 Miss Billings crafted this likeness of Strongbad to help cheer me puts a smile on my face still to this day:

4.  My favorite college professor, Frankie Clemente, was one of the most kind and insightful men I've ever known (and many other PSU grads would say the same, I'm sure).  In one of his last lectures in his sociology class he passed along his 10 rules of life.  At first I was completely bummed to find that I no longer had my notebook from that class and couldn't pass along all the details of each point below, but then I thought that perhaps they are better shared in this simple state.  I try very hard to generally follow these rules and am glad I re-stumbled upon them.  I needed the reminder;

1. Know yourself-respect yourself.
2. Live a full, passionate life.
3. Keep your health.
4. Don't be too proud to change.
5. Give something back.
6. Don't be afraid of risk or failure. (Without the sour, the sweet ain't so sweet).
7. Always take the high road.
8. You are never weaker than when you are strongest- or stronger when you are weakest.
9. Follow your own dream.
10. Tomorrow belongs to you.

I highly recommend keeping a single shoe box of memories for yourself.  It's my go to for rough days when I just need a little pick me up or a giggle...I hope you liked them too!