Wednesday, May 29, 2013

In which we suck at blogging, kill at bucket listing

Hello faithful readers (are there any of you left? Do you feel abused by our broken promises, or do you kind of “get us” and expect it at this point?)! Things have been busy in everything-moves-so-quickly Chelsea and Bonnie world. Like, life changes people!

Because, basically, although we’re terrible at blogging, we’re actually pretty excellent at crossing items (intentionally and otherwise) off our bucket list! Some highlights:

  • We finished the A Train, NYC’s longest subway line; on one end, walking the beaches of Far Rockaway and on the other, hiking the cliffs of Inwood, Harlem. We <3 NY.
  • We were both published (separately!), writing about personal experiences in our lives. Bonnie shared a reflection on her Peace Corps service and volunteerism in general. Chelsea wrote a passionate survivor essay in response to the Steubenville rape case verdict.  
  • Not only are we growing a garden (together!), but we are working with fifteen other Harlem neighborhood residents to turn an empty lot into a thriving community garden. I mean, it’s kind of legit; we have a website:
  • And finally... Ready for some big news? We’re both MOVING SOMEWHERE ELSE! For a little while. But... like, SOON! Chelsea is acquiring a part-time residence at the Jersey Shore (yes, you read that correctly). And Bonnie is spending the summer in Boston with Jeff (oh, did we not mention that Bonnie quit her job? Told you, life changes).

So as you can see, there is absolutely no time to blog, even when we’re hanging out five nights a week dilly dallying. We must allow sufficient time for catching up about the two days a week we don’t see each other, you see!

We hope this little teaser is enough to pique your (we’re sure, fading) interest. We’ll be elaborating soon. So you can probably expect something in like, November? Jokes, people, jokes.


Wednesday, March 27, 2013

In which we pay off our credit card debt

Hello and HAPPY NEW YEAR to our friends, followers, fans and foes (what are you doing here, anyway?! This is our happy place, you weirdos.)

So. It’s 2013 now. So like, let’s just let that sink in for a minute because HOLY ISH! Where did the last year go and more importantly, why didn’t we blog about it more?! I’d love to regale you with all of the stock excuses at my disposal, but can it suffice to say that unexpected life turns did us dirty and we’re re-committed to bringing you a more frequent and superior blog-reading experience? Will you just accept that without too much explanation? Yes? Great. It’s a new year, let’s just move forward amirite?!  

Speaking of moving forward (btw, is this phrase totally cliche now that Obama capitalized on it in the last election? And speaking of the election, doesn’t that feel weirdly far away now? Almost like it never happened? Just me?), can we discuss how different our lives are now than they were even one year ago at the turn of the new year?! Last year, we welcomed 2012 by “christening” Bonnie’s new Harlem apartment with an all-out New Year’s Eve rager, complete with random and unknown foreigners, rooftop fireworks at midnight, and, thanks to our best friend Kristina’s sweet sweet bartending skills . . . not one, not two, but SIX pukers. VIVA LA VIDA and all that!

So this happened...
This year, we took it about six or seven thousand notches down, and spent the turn of the new year in the country of New Hampshire. I realize that the wording of this may insinuate that we were celebrating together, but in fact, we were in different areas of the state (myself, in the White Mountains and the wife in the Lakes Regions). This is because we were each with our boyfriends. Oh, did we mention we have serious boyfriends now? I know. It’s hard for us to believe too. And side note: for those of you (read: aforementioned haters) with secret suspicions that we are actually lesbians for each other... YAHTZEE!! I assure you we are AS gay for each other as two people could possibly be without being homosexual (“not that there’s anything wrong with that!”), all of which is evidenced by our PRACTICALLY IDENTICAL NEW YEARS VACATIONS WE KNOWINGLY PLANNED WITH OUR ACTUAL SIGNIFICANT OTHERS.

For my own amusement, on the ride up to New Hampshire I slid in a casual comment to Jeff to the effect of, “Hey, the wife and Dave are in NH for New Years too”, which to my expectation and not-so-secret glee, warranted a response of, “did you seriously book us a romantic getaway double-date with The Fuckin’ Wife”, and a look to match. I should mention that Chelsea and Jeff (heretofore known as “That No-Good Minister”) have an ongoing love-hate feud for my affections. Mostly love, though. Right, guys? RIGHT?!

Chelsea hiking in the White Mountains, NH
Anyway, we both had amazing and refreshing breaks. But we have not forgotten about or put aside our commitment to accomplishing everything on our collective Bucket List. We have been slowly and painstakingly focusing on paying off our credit card debt for months, which frankly, isn’t much to write about during the act. It’s like the blogging equivalent of watching paint dry (“and then I decided to eat leftovers rather than to order out!”). We wanted to focus on this item early to free us up to do the bulk of the other tasks on our list - many of which, you’ll notice, require spending money. We did not want to spend this money without first paying down our debts. The idea is to go into these exciting feats with financial confidence and a strong plan on how we are going to afford it all.

Yes, our moms are very proud.

I can’t think of a better way to kick off 2013 than in the sweet, blissful, self-accomplished glory of credit card debt freedom. For those of you who have been living in this magical, weightless land, we are overjoyed to be joining your ranks with our newly-acquired...we’ll call it temporary residence on the way to full citizenship. Granted, we weren’t dealing with insurmountable levels of debt. But it feels good nonetheless and like an important achievement in our lives.

Naturally, after making that final, heavenly payment to a zero balance, we took the logical next step and...applied for another credit card? Ok, I know what you’re thinking. Getting even more credit borrowing availability is NOT the next logical step to paying off all your credit card debt.

Allow me to explain.

Up until now, Chelsea and I have been been making vigorous payments on standing credit card balances with the goal of finally getting down to zero. Our primary goal was to get out of debt, not really take advantage of credit cards. This is an important distinction to make.

In scenario one, in which we just try to get out of debt, we were paying disgusting amounts of interest to two of the evil “Big Four” banks and getting nothing for it. BOO SCENARIO ONE.

In scenario two, in which we make our credit work for us, we are now the proud owners of Capital One Venture cards. Yes, matching credit cards. We went there. Told you we were still super gay. AND, our new cards give us travel rewards! Ahhhhh, it’s all clicking into place. We will use these credit cards for every purchase possible, pay them off in full every month (we promise!), and start raking up the points to use towards our future travel plans.

And that’s how it’s done, friends. Twenty-Something Finance 101.

4.   Get out of credit card debt

Next, and equally as exciting for you as readers, I’m sure, we will be starting retirement funds. I must say I am looking forward to this the least as far as “funness” goes, but I do think it will make me feel good and give me some peace of mind about my future. Like, hey, at least I have somewhat started to think about it, right? Yay..?..!

We hope you all had a joyous celebration of the new year and feel good about what 2013 has to offer. We sure did and do. You’ll be hearing from us SO SOON.

P.S. If you’ve found yourself a touch confused by our frequent mentions of the “new year” and with it being nearly April, you’re probably not alone. There is a possibility that we started writing this entry roughly two months ago and just got around to finishing it now. We ask you to refer back to Paragraph 1 and accept our commitment to do better in 2013.

Monday, December 3, 2012

In which we visit our old pal Jon Stewart

Hey! Well, a few things have changed since we started this bucket list, four months ago. Chelsea acquired a second job (which she loves and kicks ass at), and I decided (somewhat impulsively) to go back to school part-time, on top of my new demanding full-time job.

This is all to say we’re sorry we fell off the grid for a while but we are still super motivated and loving our bucket list journey. In fact, we are quite proud and excited to announce, today on my beautiful, perfect bestfriendwife’s 27th birthday (and our 3-years-to-go date), that we have crossed off another item on our list!

As much as we’d like to triumphantly tell you that this all happened this week, that would be insincere. We actually completed this bucket list item... on October 10th. SURPRISE!!!! Bet you weren’t expecting THAT, were you? Oh, I suppose if you were following our blog, you might not be surprised at all cuz we totally told you this back in October. Not quite the climactic moment we were hoping for. But for all you newcomers, feel free to be super impressed by our ability to get things done, and blog about them... seven weeks later! So here it is:

 5.   Go to a taping of the Daily Show

So what went down? Well, first off, we met an Aussie fellow named Simon in line on the way in (of course we did). He was in the city celebrating his new lease on life, and when we told him about our blog, he was most interested in the concept. However, Simon actually thought we hadn’t taken our goals far enough -- can you believe that punk? He scoffed at our quest for 5,000 hits on Youtube, and said “That’s all? Why not shoot for 5,000,000? Aim for the stars and all that!” He had a very positive attitude and unique outlook on life. It’s always interesting to meet people and hear their take on our list. We’ve had all different reactions: excitement, intrigue, surprise, and even doubt (haters gon’ hate, after all), but Simon just seemed genuinely invested in our journey. It’s quite natural for people to automatically think about what they’d do with their own bucket list (and trust us, we love hearing your own goals!), but it was pretty cool to meet someone who wanted to hear every detail of the reasoning behind each item along with our plan to achieve it. We’re going to try to share more of that background information with you all moving forward, so you can have a better idea of just why this list is so important to us. 

Ok, back to The Daily Show. What else happened while we were in line? A generous (and politically ambiguous) stranger gave us these:

Ingredients: free enterprise, hard work, niacin, innovation, salt, energy production, smaller government, sugar, free trade, pro life, sodium, potassium carbonate, turmeric, efficiency, milk.
So, please weigh in, friends. Serious or jest? Dem or Repub? All proceeds (which were none since he was giving them out for free...doesn’t seem like the Romney business model) go to Habitat for Humanity. Sorry ‘bout that, Habitat. But seriously, what was that guy after?! And more intriguing: milk in ramen noodles? Really?

Moving right along. We were THE LAST people let into the studio. What a horrible disappointment we dodged there, after having left work hours early and allowed sufficient excitement to build up.

Destiny? Perhaps. More on our serendipitous evening...

The taping was great fun. On to what you really want to know - how was Jon?! Was he dreamy? Of course. Was he funny? Duh. Did he EXPLICITLY REFERENCE 2 GIRLS 1 CUP, THE SCAT VIDEO WE PLAYED OUR BLOG NAME OFF OF TO BE SIMULTANEOUSLY FUNNY BUT STILL EDGY WHICH REALLY HASN’T GOTTEN ANY PLAY SINCE LIKE 2007?!?! Check. Mate.

Yeah, that happened. It actually felt like we were MEANT to be there, sitting in that crowd, on that exact day. As soon as he said it, we freaked out. I thought you might be able to hear us exclaiming on the tape, but those sound engineers are really earning their keep, I guess (shout out to the crew who works tirelessly to make this awesome show, not to mention swiftly identifies illegal picture takers and deletes all evidence of said pictures from the taker’s phone, not that we’d ever do that AHEM). 

Note to self (selves?): when taking pictures in places where you have been told, in no uncertain terms, not to, make like it’s pre-1990s and DON’T REVIEW THAT ISH. We were victims to our generational need to approve a pic, rather than trusting in the powers that be (Simon) to take a halfway decent picture of us in The Daily Show studio. And he did. It was a crying shame to see it slip through our fingers and into the iPhone trash bin icon.

So, you’ll have to accept this mediocre snap of us in front of The Daily Show awning and use your imaginations for the inside of the studio where all the magic happens.

Aim for the Stars.
Well, it’s 11:59, about to be my birthday. I’m gonna get celebrating - BAI!


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

In which we learn to say YES.

Bonnie here, offering sincerest apologies for our little hiatus. I can assure you it’s not that we haven’t been doing anything worth writing about. It’s that we’ve been doing EVERYTHING that’s worth writing about. We have been having SO. MUCH. FUN.

Ok, we haven’t checked anything else off our bucket list but we did knock off another subway line (the jazz-immortalized A train), the details of which we will regale you with as soon as we finish out the other direction. For now, we just thought we’d give a little update on our lives since Project: Bucket List began.

On a work-related front, we did have one impressively barely successful brainstorming session to chart out a timeline for how we are going to accomplish everything on our list - I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but it’s a pretty fierce list. So we got all down to business to roughly plot out the next 38 months of our lives. We even designated a special journal to chronicle these hilarious brainstorming sessions for our eventual book deal. DUH. Our special journal soon required a second, “back-up” journal that Chelsea whipped out because I was being too Type A with our designated one.

I wish you could have seen homegirl with the notebook - she was on some “my precious” ish. I should have known better than to bring crafts into our list. Shame on me, really. I realized “brainstorming” wouldn’t work in our special journal when my wife started straight up abusing herself after making one penmanship mistake in there. After 15 minutes of patiently waiting for the opportunity to throw an idea on the table during our “brainstorm”, to no avail (“Just give me a second - I’m counting the lines to make sure the pages even out” - I KID YOU NOT - THAT WAS ACTUALLY SAID!!!), I started the junk journal.

I would normally stick up for myself here and accuse my wife of exaggerating (as she’s wont to do for the betterment of a good story) but she’s pretty spot on with this one. I was being a CRAZY PERSON. Eventually, however, as with most of our “business meetings”, the night kind of turned into giggling, geeking out on each other, and reflecting on our new endeavor over a bowl of our homemade popcorn. We both agree that the changes in ourselves and in our lives since we started the bucket list have been pretty monumental. Sure, it started with the bucket list, but it’s become more than that.

Yes, we’ve been changing. In the best way. We’re a little bit happier; more excitable. We’re a little bit more alive and we’re a hell of a lot more willing to say “yes.” Yes to everything: yes to a weekend music festival in the Catskills, yes to a last minute Mets game, yes to an invitation to Freehold, NJ to stay with a wonderful family, yes to benefit concerts, rooftop parties, cooking live lobster for the first time, birthday celebrations, dance parties, book clubs filled with new friends, jam sessions with experienced musicians . . . yes to wearing fake pearls while watching Fred Astaire films, just because our prized journal told us to. 

Put on your pearls and start a YES REVOLUTION!
It’s simple. All we had to do was just “yes,” follow through, and watch a world of opportunities open up to us. A world of new friends and experiences and places and music. We merely had to learn to be game for everything. It reminds me of a lyric from the song “I Wanna Do it All” by Terri Clark (which is an AWESOME bucket list inspired song, by the way!): I want to drink tequila down in Tijuana, and say “why not?” when somebody says “Hey do you wanna?” I just think this is the most perfectly apt way to describe how easy it is to say “yes” rather than making excuses not to. By the way, readers, you’ll be happy to know that I can totally feel myself being annoying with all this self-congratulatory yes-talk. It’s not really like me, speaking in motivational speaker-esque soliloquy and bragging a mere 2 months into what promises to be a long and trying journey. I’ll admit it’s a ballsy move, but the truth is, I haven’t felt this good in a long time, and I want to record this inspiration, even if my excitement is but fleeting. I challenge you all to hold me to it! 

The truth is, after our trip went bust last summer, we both just got a little down. I had been having a really hard time transitioning back to life in the US (and in Los Angeles of all places...yikes) after my two years in Ethiopia, struggling to heal from a lost love, and feeling a bit uneasy about my future, my ambitions, and my identity now that I was no longer a Peace Corps volunteer. This trip was that major something to look forward to, to be excited about, to be my next adventure. And I was doing it with my best friend. Those three weeks (even, yes, the last shitty one in Albuquerque) were some of the best I had had in a long time.

When the trip fell apart, it was a bigger blow than I think even we realized. I was uplifted to move back to New York City soon after the trip ended but eventually just kind of slipped back into regular life. I got an apartment, went back to the job I had right out of college (at the same desk, no less), and before I knew it, I could no longer really say that I “just got back from the Peace Corps.” Over a year had gone by and I just felt stuck.

I held onto the trip because I was afraid - afraid of growing up and settling down. Afraid of getting a “real” job. Afraid of becoming boring or predictable . . . or being, fear of all fears, tied down. Anchored. Trapped. Call it what you will. Graduation from law school meant indentured servitude. After nearly a decade of roaming wherever, and whenever I wanted to on a loose school schedule, permanent employment loomed over my head with furor. I was not ready to accept adult life. Nor was I ready to face an unforgiving job market.

But as it turns out, adult life isn’t so bad. Getting a paycheck feels better than getting loan checks to live off of, especially when you envision that the little money you’re living on in school will one day become crushing debt you can hardly peek your head around later. And I’m lucky enough to have a job that I geek out over on a daily basis. Plus the adventures are hardly over - and now we can even afford them! Sure, working life takes more planning than “I have a 4 week break from school - where am I going?!” But the reward is also so much sweeter. In the early summer, when we spent two and a half weeks in Puerto Rico (one of the weirdest and most beautiful places on earth, by the way), I felt the most calming sense of a trip well-earned. I have to be honest, I didn’t hate it, even though it did all feel very adult. I guess with becoming an adult comes accepting adulthood? Who knew? Definitely not me!

Anyway, enough about all of these FEELINGS, amirite? On the to list! We’re busy tackling several list-related projects -- banding, paying down our credit card debt, and taking subway excursions. But... the biggest announcement of all is that TODAY, WE KNOCK ANOTHER ITEM OFF OUR LIST -- WE HAVE TICKETS TO THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART!! We are super, super excited about this development and can’t wait to share the day with you all. Expect another post from us soon.

And hey, don’t be afraid to push us if you notice us on a hiatus. We do it for our people, after all!

Much love, friends.


Thursday, August 30, 2012

In which the E Train takes us to a Rustic Farm in Queens!

Chelsea Here! So, while creating our 30 under 30 bucket list, we purposely planned to include a variety of items, including financial, physical, learning, life skill, and location-specific goals (among others). We wanted to make sure to include something that was quintessentially New York in nature. When Bonnie first suggested riding every subway in the city end to end, I have to admit I was not terribly on board. With 22 lines, 468 stations, and 660 miles of track, NYC’s subway system is hardly insignificant or easily conquerable. “That’s going to be sooo boring!” I complained. Thankfully, my bestfriendwife knows exactly how to approach me:

“We won’t do it all at once - we’ll do it throughout the 40 months, and explore neighborhoods we’re not familiar with along the way. We can pair it with new and exciting activities that we never would have thought to do otherwise.”

For once in my life, I really couldn’t argue. Not even to advocate for the devil.

I have to say that, though we’re in the early stages of tackling our list, the Subway Challenge is quickly becoming one of my favorite tasks. I love adventures, and seeing new parts of the city, if only for that temporary rush of total disorientation and feeling like a tourist again. I live for the moments in this great city, which I’ve now lived in for 9 years, where I see the streets through a new lens; in new light. And of course, it’s always an interesting experience coming into contact with those in the furthest reaches of the boroughs, who have an entirely different experience of living in New York than I can claim for myself.

On Sunday, August 19th, we rode the E train, end to end. I’m going to let Bonnie take it from here for a bit:

It wasn’t exactly our intention when we set out. Our friend Elise (See Mumford post) organized this awesome Meetup group, called NYC Indie Activists (it’s really fun - if you live in the area, we suggest you join!) and Sunday’s outing was to volunteer at a farm in Queens.

Yes, you read right: a FARM in QUEENS. Be still, my heart.

It's called the Queens County Farm Museum, and it's been running since 1697. 1697! Technically, it's owned by NYC's Department of Parks & Rec., but it still operates as a fully functioning farm. Initially, we made the rookie mistake of fooling ourselves into thinking that a destination within the five boroughs must be reasonably close. No big deal, we'll just pop over and farm for a couple of hours, right?! Not so. The geographic reaches of this city are truly remarkable. Upon Google mapping the address, we realized THAT.SHIT.IS.FARRRR. See? We are learning about the city already! We contemplated a Zipcar (30 minute drive) but we didn’t have an account (we do now). Subway it was: an estimated 1 hour and 30 minute trip.

Everything we ever dreamed of.
“Is it at least at the end of the line?!” my clever, optimistic wife inquired.

“No. Four stops shy. Then we take a bus.” Defeated. Guess we’ll knock it out another time.

About an hour and fifteen minutes into our journey, I say, “Whatever. Let’s just ride to the end and turn around. We won't be that late and can handle going back four stops to get the bus.”

Chelsea: “Let’s do this ish! BUCKET LIST.”

I have a feeling this will become our mantra in times of doubt and, let’s face it, laziness. Bucket list? BUCKET LIST!!

Making things happen
We rode to the end of the E train (Jamaica Center), snapped some photos, and headed back. Arriving 40 minutes late for our farm date, we instantly confessed to Elise why we were tardy (Chelsea interjection: and it wasn't due to the wonderful crew at McDonald's who spend hours making those Egg McMuffins, amirite?!). Angel that she is, Elise forgave us (OBV), and we got to weeding. This was no ordinary weeding, mind you. No rustling your fingers through the top inch of soil to gingerly dislodge the roots of the little weedlings. No, friends. This was like, "hey see that forest of vegetation right there? There’s eggplants growing in there somewhere. Pull anything that isn’t one."

And boy did my wife pull. “Pull” doesn’t quite capture it, though. She waged WAR on those weed trees (no, not THOSE weed trees. Down, stoners!) like they were middle school bullies. And you couldn’t just take down the Queen Bee, but you had to take down all her minions too.

I (Chelsea) feel I have to interject here and clarify that I am no rube when it comes to weeding. My first job ever was working on an herb farm, Caprilands, where I helped weed the 50+ gardens on the premises. As I’m sure you can imagine, after a couple of months of this mindless labor, things get a little tedious. So I did what any imaginative girl would do - personified the weeds. Initially, the year 2000 Chelsea would just grumble under her breath at the weeds, “come on you little jerks! I’m gonna get you!” But eventually, the battle turned into so much more. They were my enemies, and they would be stopped.

My inner dialogue, which I fully vocalized on the farm in front of the other volunteers, went a little something like this:

“Your time has come. I will not stop until you’ve been destroyed.”

“Oh eggplants, you may think they’re your friends. That’s so cute. THEY’RE NOT. They’re evil, selfish and sneaky! One minute, they’re just hanging out near your roots, and the next, they’re leveling your existence. All your brothers and sisters standing around you? Gone too, if these assholes have anything to say about it.”

Chelsea, taking down the king pin.
Yes. I really say these things while gardening. I’m sure you can only begin to imagine how intense I was on the rugby pitch.

Anyway, the other volunteers kind of laughed along, promptly followed by moving over to another row of veggies, presumably to get away from the crazy person talking to the plants. Whatever. They clearly don’t know the joy of triumphantly clearing out a row and announcing “MISSION ACCOMPLISHED” to a dazzled crowd of hot peppers, who've been anxiously awaiting their liberation from clutches of terrorism the Axis of Weed Evil. 

Victory is OURS
So there you have it. My wife, the playwright to the destruction of weeds. I tried to vocalize a retort on behalf of the weeds. You know, something like, “Hey, just because we aren’t as delicious as those eggplants doesn’t mean we don’t deserve yummy nutrients, tooooo. Wahhh.” But there was no grey area in Chelsea’s decade-long battle between vegetable and weed; good and evil.

And as in all proper stories, the good guys won out. We made a fantastic showing against those weeds and were rewarded with free (!!!), as much as our arms could carry, access to the farm’s vegetable store room. Crates of heirloom tomatoes, huge bushels of kale, lettuce, and leeks, and my personal prize: a monstrous eggplant that I picked myself. A week’s worth of delicious, locally grown vegetables for the price of a solid afternoon’s work. And then to boot, we got to play with farm animals! Pigs, goats, and alpaca that we fed baby carrots.

Bonnie's prize eggplant. Which she cradled in her arms like a small child. Seriously.
We honestly couldn’t have asked for a better day. Tuckered though we were, we knew what we had to do. Ride to the other end. Lucky for us, the E train ends at the World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan, not terribly out of our way. We documented our achievement, with slightly less vigor than we had on the way out, and then made our respective ways home.  

Last stop!

1 train down, 21 to go.

Friday, August 17, 2012

In which we go to a Mumford show & knock our first item off the list!

Hi Friends, Chelsea here!   

So, before I get started with this triumphant account of us knocking the first item off our bucket list, I just wanted to clarify that we actually compiled the majority of the list on July 27, 2012. I am only stating this to be clear that there was no funny business involved whatsoever, and this item was firmly included on the list prior to its completion, and not included after-the-fact so we could easily cross something off. And for the record, boy was it not easy to accomplish. But since we’ve now completed this task, allow me the honor of crossing it off:

25. Go to a Mumford & Sons show.

You might be wondering why this item is included at all. At surface, it seems kind of trivial compared with some of our other more long-term or skill building tasks. But we insisted on including this one for a couple of reasons. Namely because we missed our opportunity to go to New Orleans Jazz Fest and see Mumford & Sons last Spring (you’ll notice that going to Jazz Fest is also on the list!) when our bus broke down and our cross country trip went defunct in evil quirky Albuquerque.  But also because they’re our favorite band, they’ve been a major source of musical inspiration (at least for me, taking up the banjo), and we’ve been wanting to fangirl out over them in the flesh for 17 months. Plus, our list is all about making things happen.

Oh, did I ever make things happen.

The morning of Bonnie’s birthday, I noticed a friend posted a status exclaiming their excitement about that evening’s Mumford & Sons show in Hoboken, NJ. I’d known about the show, but for some reason in my mind, it was taking place in September, and I had plenty of time to secure tickets. Wrong. How did I get things so wrong? How, you might be wondering, did I manage to remain ignorant of the one local date on my own favorite band’s tour? I wish I could answer this question for you, but truthfully, when it comes to planning for concerts (or planning, in general), I’m just the worst.

So... Mumford & Sons. In our city. The night of my wife’s 27th birthday. Not to mention the date of the kick-off of our bucket list. I tried to think of one good reason not to, and surely I could have found one (the price of the tickets alone would have driven away many), but I kept thinking, “I must, I must, I MUST get us tickets.”

Brief interlude for Bonnie’s perspective: Meanwhile on my end, my birthday also just happened to be my first day at my new job at the hospital. After waiting six weeks to start, my start date would, of course, be on my birthday. I suppose I could have asked to start on August 2nd, allow myself one last day of funemployment to enjoy my birthday, but the hospital’s benefits start on the 1st of the month. See that, friends? First adult 27 year-old decision made: health insurance over a day at the beach. Bam. Grown-up.

So it was my first day. I was sitting with my new boss when my phone went into an epileptic seizure of incoming text vibrations. My boss noticed my phone blowing up and I awkwardly admitted that it was actually my birthday and I was getting happy birthday texts. However, when I looked at my phone, it was actually a series of frantic texts from my wife, excitedly telling me that the Mumford & Sons show was actually that very night, not in September as we thought.


What do we do?? I was supposed to be having 10+ friends over for an evening of Ethiopian food, drinks, and dynamic conversation. Everyone was planning to be at my apartment in like 8 hours! I gave it about 30 seconds of thought. This was Mumford. This was our bucket list. And it was my G.D. birthday; I could bail if I wanted to. So at the risk of pissing off my friends with a totally flakey move, even for me, I gave the wife the OK to cancel the dinner and buy tickets - we were going to see Mumford. And damn was it worth it. I’ll let Chelsea finish the story now as she was the real hero of the hour.

Ahem, thank you beautiful wife! Ok, so. Four hours, three panic attacks, 28 craigslist and ebay emails (some of which ended in kind strangers commending me for being such a good friend, athankyouverymuch), one sketchy meet up outside the ABC building, and a canceled Ethiopian dinner party later, I held in my hand these two beautiful tickets:

Now, all that was left to do was anticipate the show and hope for good weather. The day was rainy and thunderstormy, and weather websites were doing nothing for my confidence regarding how things would go that evening. But I forced myself to think positively. Should it rain, I was ready to dance in it. This was Mumford. Mumford would not let us down, even if Mother Nature did.

Miraculously, she didn’t.

After the Storm
The sun peaked through just as we arrived at Pier A, and as it set, it cast the most beautiful colors over the New York City skyline. The kind of colors you only get after the storm (get it, get it? Mumford reference!). Our close friends Elise and Aaron also scooped tickets and joined us at the venue (thanks for pulling through last minute, friendulars!). We chattered excitedly as we made our way towards the stage.

Somehow, despite showing up approximately 30 minutes before Mumford took the stage, we found a spot ridiculously close. I mean... so close that we were in the crowd shots being shown to the audience towards the back (the pier goes back quite a ways). So close that we could see Marcus’s facial expressions. I doubt we’ll ever have the chance to get that close to them again. Check it:

Me, Bonnie, Elise, Aaron - so close!
And we even got closer as the show started and people tired of the rowdy crowd.

Anyway, the show was magic. The lights, the sounds, the set list, the dancing, the background of the water and New York’s amazing skyline, the firework finale . . . suffice to say, it was well worth the wait.

A beautiful show, with the NYC skyline as the backdrop
After the show ended and the fireworks concluded, we finished the night meeting up with some friends for karaoke in the East Village. Totally rocked “Just a Girl” by No Doubt (take that GOP and your anti-lady policies!). Totally busted out in a bar-wide rendition of the Star Spangled banner when there was a lull in song requests (ffff yeah Olympics!). And totally shut the bar down with “Little Lion Man” in celebration of our first glorious bucket list cross-off.  

Has anyone ever been this happy before?!
We’re super excited about what’s to come and off to a great start! And stay tuned, because in celebration of our first completed task, we will be recording a Mumford & Sons cover for the YouTubes, so you all can see our progress on list item #10, becoming a band. :]


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Oh hello. We’re back.

2girls1bus, that is. Except without the bus. You might be thinking, "what’s left to write about?" We had the same question. We’ve been trying to find a way to return to blogging since our cross country trip fell under last May, but it’s been rough (if by this point, you have no idea what we’re talking about, you can catch yourself up here).

Anyway, we tried to buy another bus, to make another trip happen, but nothing worked out and it just doesn’t feel right without Prudence. She was a special lady. And we weren’t in the right place to go purchasing a bus and running off. We’re in our late twenties now. Responsibilities knocked.

We know, we know. That sounds like an insane, overly privileged, nonsense thing to say. We are having a hard time swallowing it, too. But it’s true. Life happened, and the two girls who were at a crossroads kind of ended up choosing their paths. At least for now. Our careers are taking off, and we’re not really in a transition period any longer. We’re happy with where we’re at, but also realize we’re not getting any younger.

We hear so much talk about traveling when you’re young. About doing the things you can only do when you’re young while you’re young (for the record, we think this mindset is bullshit - we fully intend to have adventures for our entire lives). However, the recent media attention on “getting it in” while you still can has got us thinking. Let’s just do this thing. Now.

So we created a “30 under 30” bucket list, starting on Bonnie’s 27th birthday (August 1, 2012), for us to complete by Chelsea’s 30th birthday on December 3, 2015. We have just forty months. To make, do, see, learn, visit, build, uncover, create, experience.

Like, imagine if we do this thing? How badass will that be? How amazing will the next three and a half years be? I mean, you don’t even have an inkling because you haven’t seen the list yet, but TRUST US; it’s going to be both badass and amazing! And we expect, pretty damn entertaining.

We’re ready. Are you?