do you believe in love at first sight?

I wasn't sure that I did. Until yesterday, when I saw this beauty cruising down College Ave.

I'm not a "car person," but I've been on the lookout for a new one for a few months. I've seen a few different kinds that I liked. But I had this feeling that when I saw it—the car that was destined to be my next—I would just know. And that's the feeling I had yesterday when I spotted the Audi S5 Coupe.

Alas, this love story has an abrupt and unhappy ending. I was so excited that I'd found "my car," until I came home, searched the web, and found out how much it costs. 

Goodbye, Lover. Maybe we'll meet again in 20 or 30 years.


convos with kiddies

My cousin Luke is 4 and a half. My cousin Emma just turned 8. I spent the weekend with them in North Carolina. Here are just a few of the conversations we had:

Me: I'm just a big kid.
Luke: No, you're an adult.
Me: I don't want to be an adult, I want to be a big kid.
Luke: Do you like drinking coffee?
Me: Yeah.
Luke: Do you like drinking it all day?
Me: Yeah.
Luke: Then you should stay like that.

Emma: I wish you could stay longer. Do you have to go back home? So you can keep your house?
Me: Yes, I have to go back to work so I can pay for my house, and my food, and my car and everything.
Emma: Well... what about a hotel?

Me: How'd you get to be so cute?
Luke: I don't know.
Me: Do YOU think you're cute?
Luke: Yeah.
Me: How do you know you're cute?
Luke: Because I really am!

Emma: Are you in Auntie Susan's family, the Pasquariello family?
Me: Yes, you know Auntie Susan is my mom. But I got married to Ryan, so now McGinnis is our new last name.
Emma: McGinnis. OK. But you're still in the Pasquariello family, right?
(strange timing considering my last post)

Me: I don't want to leave. 
Luke: Don't you want to see your husband?
Me: Yes.
Luke: Then you have to go.


trading it in

I never planned to change my last name. I thought it was an outdated and chauvinistic tradition, and I liked the name I already had—the one I was born with. I love the family history it holds. In a weird way, I even love that it's difficult to pronounce. I was never one of the girls doodling "Mrs. So-and-so" in my notebooks*.

But then I got
 married. And I traded it in. 

"Pasquariello" became "McGinnis." And to be honest, at first I felt like an impostor—or worse, a traitor.

It was a tough decision. Really tough. I cried about it, and not just a single tear but a wet-faced, steering-wheel-gripping pity party.

How come women never talk about that? I know I'm not the only one in history to have a hard time letting go of her last name. But so many women get excited about a new name, that I almost felt guilty for having the opposite emotion.

But I ended up doing it anyway. Why?

The short answer is that I decided it was the right decision for us—that tiny little word that makes such a big difference—graduating from me to us.

The long answer is... more complicated. Several conversations went around in circles. I discovered his reasons for wanting me to take his last name weren't chauvinistic—they were actually rather sweet, which only pissed me off. Because my reasons were equally justified. 

It was a complete stalemate. There was no truly feasible compromise, since hyphenating would mean a 20-letter last name. My best friend Laura suggested getting a maiden name tattoo, which I actually considered before deciding against it.
too long for a tat

a bit unwieldy 
I did a little soul-searching, and by that I mean talking to a few friends (if you're reading, thanks for listening), staying up late one night listening to Adele, drinking Pinot Noir, and writing my name out in fine point Sharpie on notebook paper in every possible combination. I'd look at it every few days, think about it, write it down, think about it some more.

On the blistering hot day we found ourselves at the Athens-Clarke County Courthouse filing paperwork, there was a blank line that demanded FUTURE LAST NAME. I wrote "McGinnis" on the form, and handed it to my future husband. He set about filling in his portion, and then he saw it. He stopped. He smiled. 

Pointing to the line, he asked, "What's that?"

I didn't answer. 

"I'd hoped we'd get there, but I didn't think we were there yet."

And that's how it happened. It might've been a decision I made for us, but it was a conclusion I had to reach on my own

*Disclaimer: I once owned a shirt that said "Mrs. Clooney" but I don't think that counts.


super week in naptown

For the past 10 days, the Super Bowl has been all that any of us here in Indy could talk about. I kid you not. I can't tell you how many times I heard or uttered the following...

Have you ridden the zip line?
Have you seen the line for Jimmy Fallon?
Did you hear Jimmy Fallon ate at Mug-n-Bun?
Where are you gonna park?
Did you hear Ryan Gosling was at Kilroy's downtown last night?
Did you hear Ryan Gosling was in Broad Ripple last night?
Are you going to the NFL Experience? Media Day? the Super Bowl Village? the NFL Honors Awards show? the DirecTV Beach Bowl? the GQ party? the Playboy party? the LMFAO concert? the OAR concert? the Sixpence None the Richer concert? the Snoop Dogg and Nelly concert?
We saw Jerry Rice!
We saw Drew Brees!
We ALMOST saw Jimmy Fallon!

The city was ecstatic about hosting the Super Bowl, and people were so PROUD. There were more than 9,000 volunteers, and each and every one of them had a hand-knit scarf from a Hoosier (that's what they call a person from Indiana, for all the non-Hoosiers). 

It was just heartwarming to see so many people who care so deeply about their hometown, going out of their way to make people feel welcome. That's not something you see every day. Or every year. And right about now—especially with this warm streak we're having—I feel pretty lucky to live here.