Ten Things to Remember When You Move
So, in the past 7 months, I’ve moved twice, once across the street and once across the country. As this is actually my tenth move (in as many years) and my second cross-country move, I felt that all the wisdom I’ve gained should not go to waste. So, I’m posting it here. Aren’t you lucky?
1. Keep all your moving papers in one place. It took me a while to learn this one, but things are much easier to manage if you get a folder (preferably one that zips, snaps or velcros shut) and put any and all papers relating to your move inside it. Then, make sure you always know where it is.
2. Save every single receipt, even if you just bought a soda. It helps when you do your taxes (moving for a job can be written off) and if (really when) you start returning some things you purchased and really don’t need, you’ll be grateful those receipts aren’t in the dumpster.
3. Hire movers. When I was twenty and could fit my entire life into my car, moving myself wasn’t so bad. Now that I’m older and have a lot more crap, including furniture, I realize it’s just easier and a lot less stressful to hire professionals. Plus, let’s not kid ourselves–asking our friends to help and then offering them a pizza as payment is pretty lame.
4. Never underestimate the power of a heating pad. Don’t pack it in a box, keep it near you at all times.
5. Magic erasers are the bomb-diggity! ‘Nuf said.
6. You’ll always need more garbage bags than you think you will. Stock up.
7. You will get stressed. It’s inevitable. I used to think I was pretty good at moving, until an old roommate told me she remembered how much I hated to move. Oops, guess I really didn’t hide it that well. Packing is tiring, unpacking is tiring, moving things around and setting up an apartment/home is tiring. Accept it now and remember to breathe. And keep in mind, it’s okay to be stressed out. Really.
8. Change your addresses for EVERYTHING. Catalogs, credit cards, magazines, newspaper delivery, doctor’s offices, drugstores … any and everything that you get in your mailbox shouldn’t go there after you move. You can forward your mail online at USPS.com, which I love. But this only lasts for 12 months or something. If possible, visit the websites for your credit cards and magazines and change your address. For most magazines you don’t even need a login or password, just the mailing label on the most recent issue. For catalogs, you’ll probably have to request them again. Or just start buying stuff and wait for the deluge.
9. Get the lay of the land before you arrive. If you’re moving to a new area, new city or new state, it’s always a good idea to have an idea of where things are, in general. I always like to find the nearest grocery store to my new place, as well as the nearest mall, drug store and Wal-Mart. I use Google Maps and get directions to these landmarks from my new apartment. If you spend some time taking a look at the accompanying maps you’ll start to get a feel for the roads. Paper maps and atlases are good for that too.
10. Know where your corkscrew is at ALL TIMES. I had a close call on this one recently. I won’t recount it now, but *shudder* – just keep in mind, I know that of which I speak. Don’t make the same mistake I did.
Posted October 5th, 2009
Ten Reasons I Really Dislike Halloween
I know, I know, I’m the biggest party pooper that ever walked the planet, but I really don’t like Halloween. Not at all. And here’s why.
1. I don’t see any real value in being scared out of my wits by people jumping out of doorways or popping up from behind hay bales.
2. Call me crazy, but being chased by a masked man brandishing a sickle or knife is not my idea of a good time.
3. I have a severe distrust of people in masks. It took me most of my adolescence to get over my fear of Mickey Mouse. And don’t get me started on Darth Vader.
4. My parents never let me dress up like a princess when I was a kid. I’m pretty sure this soured me to Halloween very early on.
5. I detest scary movies–farcical or otherwise.
6. Fake blood is gross.
7. Ghosts really are spooky.
8. Some people think Halloween gives them free license to be nuts. No, it really doesn’t.
9. In sixth grade, my teachers thought it’d be brilliant for us to watch “The Pit and the Pendulum” on Halloween. You know, the old black and white movie with Vincent Price, where someone gets bricked alive into a wall and a guy gets strapped to a slab where a huge swinging blade gets closer and closer to cutting him in half. Yeah, that didn’t go over well.
10. Now, that I’m older, I still have to endure Halloween, except I don’t get candy anymore. How is that fair?
Posted on September 6, 2009
My Ten Favorite John Williams Tunes
In honor of seeing John Williams conduct the L.A. Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl, here’s a list of my top John Williams compositions. And if you don’t know who John Williams is, then for shame.
1. Star Wars: Main Title – I don’t know if there is a more recognizable movie theme than this. Maybe “Gone With the Wind.” Maybe.
2. The Flying Theme from E.T. – It captures the awe of that moment with the bikes silhouetted against the moon and the exhilaration of Elliot and his friends as they realize they’ve taken flight.
3. Jurassic Park: Main Theme – It’s a little spooky and a whole lot epic.
4. Fawkes the Phoenix from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – Absolutely beautiful.
5. Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark Theme – The minute you hear that galloping intro you immediately want to don a brown fedora.
6. The Imperial March from The Empire Strikes Back – Majestic, regal and the calling card for one of cinema’s greatest villains.
7. Throne Room and End Titles from Star Wars – A melody worthy of the heroes it honors.
8. Can You Read My Mind from Superman – C’mon, after knowing he has X-ray vision and super-human strength, isn’t this the first question you’d ask?
9. March from 1941 – It’s just fun. Period.
10. Theme from Schindler’s List – It’s one of the only violin-centric pieces I like. Combine Itzhak Pearlman with John Williams and you get greatness.
Posted on September 2, 2009
Ten Things I Love About Los Angeles
1. Delivery Mexican food – while there is a dearth of good Chinese places, the fact that I can have chicken enchiladas and nachos delivered to my door in about twenty minutes is amazing.
2. Accessibility to Panels & Cons – I would never have had the chance to attend the Paley Fest or all the conventions I’ve gone to if I wasn’t in LA. It’s awesome.
3. The weather – No, really. While it’s currently pretty warm, sunny skies definitely do brighten your day.
4. The scenery – Have you ever been to Florida? It’s flat … I mean, flatter than flat. In LA, I can see mountains, desert and ocean within fifteen minutes of my house.
5. Pacific Standard Time – I know my day is as long as anyone else’s, but I swear, when I’m back on the East Coast, I feel like I lose those three hours.
6. Disneyland – That’s not really a surprise, is it? Seriously, I’ve grown to appreciate the first theme park that Walt built.
7. My friends – I have met some pretty amazing people in California and that was something I didn’t expect.
8. Driving through Warner Bros. – So, you can’t actually drive onto the lot, but the WB soundstages and office buildings cover a few blocks in Burbank that do have through roads. It’s kind of cool to be driving and then look up and see the WB Water Tower.
9. Comic-Con – There is nothing else like it. Anywhere. Not even close.
10. Neighborhoods – Considering how big LA is, it’s really just a bunch of neighborhoods. Depending on where you live, sticking to your own little smog-covered corner normally means you have everything you need — groceries, coffee shop, movie theater, shopping, banking — pretty close by.
Post Date: 9/1/09
Because I just felt like making a list … sometimes lists are fun!
Ten Things to Know About Megan – Fall 2009
1. If I could have dinner with any three celebrities, living or dead, they would be Walt Disney, George Lucas and Orson Scott Card.
2. I can and will sit for four to five hours at a stretch and watch a string of my favorite TV show episodes on DVD. Some of my favorites are the new Battlestar Galactica, Firefly, Star Trek: Voyager and Farscape.
3. I LOVE Disney! That’s not hyperbole, it’s actually true. If I could marry Walt Disney World—okay, that’s a little much … If I could marry Cinderella’s Castle, I totally would!
4. I wrote my first piece of fanfiction when I was seven and it was a rip-off of “Star Wars.” (Apollo Starkiller was my main character – I swear!)
5. I think the original “Star Wars” trilogy (eps. 4-6) is one of the best examples of modern science fiction. I will always love George Lucas (despite his recent missteps) for providing us with that story, those characters and their world.
6. At any meal, I’d rather be eating pizza.
7. I’m starting to really dig social networking.
8. I want a boyfriend, but don’t have one. Haven’t had one for a while actually.
9. I met my current roommates online through a Firefly/Serenity fan web site (no joke!)
10. I really miss snow.