Thursday, December 29, 2011

"One if By Land, Two if By Sea," is not code for "I'm pregnant with twins."

My mom tries to constantly remind me that not everyone has a degree in history like I do. This usually comes after I yell at someone on Jeopardy for giving such a blatantly wrong answer (Abraham Lincoln did not sign the Declaration of Independence, Queen Victoria didn't sponsor Christopher Columbus on his expedition etc.) I think I'm pretty good at remembering that not everyone studied my favorite subject. I'm the first one to admit that I don't know as much about history as I probably should. But, I do expect people to have some sort of basic familiarity with history. This leads me to my story...

I bought a cute, new shirt a few days ago at Old Navy. It's a red and navy striped shirt that says, "One if By Land, Two if By Sea." A nautical design and a historical theme, how can you go wrong with that? You can't! I had a bunch of errands to run today and I thought it would be the perfect time to debut my new, nautical, nerdy shirt. One of the many stops on my itinerary was Starbucks. (shocker) I reached the front of the line and the barista at the register read my shirt. Then the following conversation took place:

Barista: "What does your shirt say?"
Me: "One if By Land, Two if By Sea."
Barista: "Is that about babies?"
Me: "No ?!?" ( Thinking, "What the fudge?")
        "It's from the Revolutionary War." (Now I'm starting to think that means my shirt makes me look pregnant.)
Barista: "I don't get it."
Barista 2: "It's a war saying."
Me: "It's how the colonists planned to signal to each other. If the British were coming by land they were going to hang one lantern in the church. If they came by sea -" (I was cut off)
Barista: "Oh I thought it was about twins. I have twins. Like a one for two thing... I didn't get it."
Barista 2: "Can you just give her, her coffee? This lady wants to leave."

I walked away from the counter and stood by the bar to wait for my drink. What just happened? Why wasn't anyone else there with me to witness this? Did I really just have to explain that a famous, historical, American phrase was not about babies? Why didn't the phrase sound even remotely familiar to this lady? I didn't expect her to say anything about Paul Revere, Boston, Old North Church, how many lanterns there were, Lexington and Concord, militia ... but a vague understanding would have been good with me. I'm sure if she had asked me if the shirt was about pirates, Jack Sparrow, or even the Loch Ness Monster I probably would have given her a bit of a stink face but golly, that would have been closer than babies! Babies?! Holy Smokes! That barista should have let me finish with my history lesson. She could have used a refresher course with JHistory Girl!

(No babies!)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas in My Home Town + Christmas Carol Remix

I was fortunate enough to fly back to Colorado and visit my dad and stepmom during our school's fall break this year. Smog-free air, crisp temperatures and wild animals roaming about made up the perfect setting for a great week with my family. The trip started out with a surprise limo ride to the airport, complete with Michael Jackson music already playing when I climbed inside. Once in Colorado, there were fires in the fireplace and ATV rides around the property. There was also plenty of shopping, conversation, and relaxation. I couldn't have asked for a better Thanksgiving holiday!

At the start of my trip, I left California in full Thanksgiving mode. When I returned from Colorado on Black Friday it was already beginning to look a lot like Christmas. The smell of freshly baked pumpkin pie-cinnamon rolls greeted me at the door. And once I had recovered from my exhausting travels, the Christmas carols began to hum and the decorations went up.

As they do every year, the Christmas lights around my neighborhood encourage me to go for walks/runs at night. Seeing the houses lit up, helps to take a little sting out of what sometimes feels like the chore of working out. And I need all the work outs I can get, so as to negate some of the calories I take in due to my fierce eggnog habit.

In the spirit of the season, I've decided to remix a classic Christmas melody- J.History Girl Style! I present to you J. History Girl's "The 12 Days of Christmas," enjoy! :

On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me
12 Dirty Diana tees
11 Pretty Paintbrushes
10 Lights a Glowing
9 Seasonal Lattes Brewing
8 Mugs of Eggnog
7 Sweet Sweaters!
6 Great Artifacts
5 Bedazzled Rings!
4 Candy Canes
3 French Christmas Carols
2 History Books
 and a Sparkley Christmas Tree