Hello, my name is Erica and I’m a biblioholic
I have a problem. I can’t stop buying books. But that’s not the whole problem; the whole problem is that lately I have been buying or borrowing them faster than I can read them. I have bookmarks in no less than seven (SEVEN!) books right now. I’ve run out of proper bookmarks and have resorted to tearing off scraps of paper from notes, Google Maps directions and the phone number of a boy I really don’t want to call back. And last weekend I bought two more books. My car drove itself to Changing Hands Bookstore. I couldn’t stop it—I was just going to look!—but then I flipped open the back cover of a used hardback book, and I fell in love with Jonathan Safran Foer. I bought a book because of the author’s picture; I have stooped to a new low of patheticness. New, for your viewing pleasure:

But this book! This book is amazing. It may just pull me from my non-committal rut.


Meet Jack Junior
My shiny new MacBook arrived yesterday morning. I practically skipped toward the FedEx man to claim my prize. Favorite new feature: the handy, little built-in iSight camera. It'll come in handy for all those internet porn sights I subscribe to. Or it'll just be a fun way to use iChat. Dan tried to convince me to name the new Macintosh "Josh," so to follow the footsteps of Jack the Mac and Yolanda the Honda. But it doesn't fit the cardinal rule of naming things: they should never have any association with a person you know, otherwise the inanimate object may be the receiving end of unwarranted emotions. For example, when I named Charlie, my high school and college car (this was before I adopted the rhyming scheme, Charlie was in homage to Charlie Brown, your average, good guy with nothing flashy), I didn't know anyone named Charlie. Now, there are Charlies everywhere. I think I'll stick with Jack Junior for now. Seems to fit.


Observation from a weekend in Palm Springs, Calif.
The city (a distinction I apply liberally, since it seemed more like a town than a city) was a Mecca for geriatrics and gays. Quite the combo of demographics. The theater downtown had just let out its Sunday matinee when Ally and I drove past, and judging by the swarms of purple dresses and corresponding ruby colored chapeaus, there must have been a Red Hat Society convention going on. Every other shop had a rainbow flag out front, and we had to pick Ally's jaw off the floor of a "specialty shop" when she opened a happy wedding card that had an, um, revealing picture on the inside of a seemingly innocent greeting. To give you a flavor of our night out in Palm Springs, I present the following conversation:

SETTING: Walking along the sidewalk of a well-lit street late at night with my mother and younger sister.

MY MOTHER: So, why do you think we see more gay men on the street, but not hardly any lesbians?
ME: I don't know. It seems to me that in our culture, lesbians get the shaft...ummm [tries to stiffle laughter]...I mean they get the short end of the stick...er...I mean [errupts in a fit of laughter]
MY MOTHER: You'd better not put that on your blog.


This is why I was jumping up and down in my office this morning, behaving like a total idiot
Yes, I'm a dork. No, there is not footage.

Update: A MacBook with my name on it is now coming down the pipeline.

Other good news
Yesterday a very important item arrived in the mail for me: the title for a certain 2003 Honda Civic Hybrid. Yolanda the Honda is officially mine and 100 percent paid off.


Funny Sentences in My Inbox
It's been a loooooong time coming, folks. Here's a few of the gems gathering dust in my inbox(es):

Dan...sorry I missed your call last night. I was passed out on my bed with the LA Times. Hot.

I say NOAA should sell naming rights to hurricanes. Hurricane The Flavor Of Trident Will Blow You Away. Tropical Depression Wouldn't Happen If You'd Taken Paxil.

She looks scary. Like she's a walking dead person. I am going to look at her as little as possible for fear she will suck out my soul.

You can't forego your dreams because of your sense of guilt. You're not Catholic or Jewish, so you'd have no excuse.

Speaking of tools, Gov. Schwarzenegger just popped up on TV for a special election ad, and it scared the living shit out of me. Mostly because it was louder than the other ads, and Ahnold has no voice modulation to begin with. "I AM GOVENUH SCHWARZENEGGER. YOU ELECTED ME TO REBUILD KULLYFORNIA." Gah!!

It was then I discovered I am not able to talk to people who are naked (especially when I myself am in the buff). They were all, "Where are you ladies from?" and I'm all, "How should I know? I'm naked!"

You're on the fast path to delinquency, young lady. Next thing we know, you'll be chewing gum and running in the halls.

Is someone offering social lives? I'll buy one.


You've been in three of my dreams over the last week. Would you knock it off? Wait... this isn't you telepathically crying for help, is it? You're not, like, stuck in a well or been abducted by a cult or something, so you're proping the astral plane to get somebody with whom you share a psychic rapport to take an interest and call the cops, right? If you are, hold on! Help is on the way!

Crap! I have to go to church tomorrow?! I don't have time for church!

Gandhi spent most of his adult life celibate and a lot of people would have you believe Jesus did, too, but I think the core that makes them who they are comes from how they acted when their clothes were on, not when their clothes were off.

You'll both be amused to know that as I did my karaoke performance of "Dress You Up" last night, I had strangers putting dollars down my pants.

Winter 2003 was one of my fave semesters, too! But that might be because I drank about six nights a week.

Hi love duck, It's me.

Overheard in the newsroom: "My wife just had a sonogram today ... our child is 17½ picas long!"

I did once make him cower in the corner and pee himself. Do you think that makes me a bitch?

Your email reminds me of that time I never called you back... what a horrible friend I am, I'm really sorry about that.

It was 25 degrees here yesterday! ...that's in proper degress, not american ones ;o)

Oh my God! Erica's gone kinky on us! :) And it's only Tuesday!


Heaps 'o Fun
Last Thursday Betsy and I went to see Imogen Heap in concert. She was A-MAZING. Imogen, that is. Although, Betsy's amazing, too. She just doesn't have a freaking awesome six-year-old-rolling-in-the-grass-coming-up-with-butterflies-and-twigs hairdo or a freaking awesome voice. I can totally see why Megan wants to name all her babies Imogen now. There was this guy standing in front of us at the concert, we'll call him Bruce, because he looked like my uncle Bruce. Bruce wasn't so much "standing" as he was dancing, and he wasn't so much "dancing" as he was twitching. Taken out of context, I might have thought Bruce was having a seizure while standing up; I would have been pretty impressed, considering he would have been seizing to the beat of "Headlock." It seemed somewhat appropriate, though, considering Imogen's spritely, child-like stage presence; she releases that, dance-like-you're-crazy energy.

We scored tickets (in the rafters) for tonight's playoffs game, Suns v. Clippers. I've mentioned before my newfound love for the Suns before, but just in case you were wondering why I love them, let me enumerate the reasons:
1. The way Steve Nash shoots like he's tripping over a rope strung across the court at his ankles, and how he passes without a second glance to teammates behind him. Dude has eyes all over the place. Not to mention the fact that he's NBA MVP for the second year in a row, baby!
2. Raja (Rings My) Bell. Did you see the way he threw Kobe down in a headlock in game five of the series with the Lakers? I think he was a wrestler in a previous life. You take that big sniveling baby down, Raja!
3. Boris Diaw: what a strange amalgamation of cultures: a Black Frenchman with a Russian name. Oh, and don't forget that he's the NBA's most improved player this year.
4. The way when Eddie House enters the game he drowns threes like it's his job. Well...it is, I guess, but he's damn good at it.
5. Leandro Barbosa's humility. Assistant Coach Dan D'Antoni actually has to feed his ego during practice because the guy's got self esteem issues apparently. Now there's something refreshing in the NBA.
6. Amare Stoudemeire's fashion sense. I love seeing the odd shirt-and-tie pairings he puts together for his injured courtside appearances.
7. They just play like a team, like they actually like to play, and like they actually like to play with each other. Imagine that.


Goodbye, Leaky Cauldron, of Sorts
You were good to me, but now it's time for something new. When I started this blog in December of 2002, it was with the intent to keep it just while I was studying in London. The only connection I really had to the Motherland was my enjoyment of the Harry Potter books, so when looking for inspiration for a name for the blog, I turned to the magical London pub. But now it's time to be something more than That Girl Who Likes Harry Potter. Terra incognita is Latin for unknown territory, and it's a more appropriate title for this time in my life for several reasons: I'm still figuring out my way around this Land of No More Education, I'm always looking ahead to the next destination, and next year I plan on going on a Big Ass Trip to many places I haven't seen before. So, here's to unknown territories and the friends and adventures to be found there. *clink clink*


New name. New color palette. New post to come.