Mild spoiler alert: If you haven’t seen this week’s “Game of Thrones” or “The Bachelorette,” you may want to stop reading here…
- Applebee’s: Remember when Aidan from SATC was the voice of Applebee’s, and the tagline was “Eatin’ good in the neighborhood”? Ahh, sweet nostalgia. I recently revisited my old HS stomping grounds for after-party karaoke and it didn’t disappoint. 2-4-1 margaritas, shared appetizers and a TWELVE-DOLLAR BILL. Sometimes, it’s good to go back to your roots — and cheaper prices.
- Game of Thrones: I know, I’ve already mentioned GoT in these obsessions before, but this past week’s episode was so damn incredible, I would be a fool to forget it. My superstitious side says it was because it was Episode 07.04, which happens to be my birthday. And my logical side says it was because they’ve been building so many storylines and it was about time for some MAJOR stuff to go down this season. Hot damn 🔥
- “The Bachelorette” Finale… NOT: Booooo, hiss. We waited all season for Rachel Lindsay to pick a perfect mate and I’m quite disappointed with her final rose. The second place suitor wasn’t ready to propose after six weeks of dating, which sounds completely normal outside of Bachelor Nation. Unfortunately, Rachel claimed to have found the real thing elsewhere, and while I wish them well, I don’t understand how she literally cried off her eyelashes over the runner-up and got engaged to someone else the next day. Reality TV at its finest…
- “White Liar” – Miranda Lambert: That karaoke session I mentioned? Well, Daytona’s finest chose this little ditty and my youngest cousin swore up and down it was a Reba McEntire song. I don’t know if I’ve ever laughed as much as I have while hearing his arguments, but I do know I’ll always enjoy hearing this one when it comes up in my playlist.
Before we jump into this week’s distractions, I cannot sit idly by without voicing my disgust for Trump’s tweetstorm plan to ban transgender people from serving in the military. I cannot fathom the courage it takes to identify as trans and to voluntarily serve our country — then to be denied the latter for any seemingly legitimate reason. If you’re as outraged as I, please take a moment to call your representative, then sign and share this petition. To my trans friends and followers, please be reassured I admire your strength and am here to support however I can.
Now, as I’d previously planned this post… In the interest of an upcoming trip back east, I figure there’s no better way to honor it than with four Florida finds:
- #WigginOutWedding: Not that I need a reason to travel 3,000 miles per se, but my good friend Cheryl’s wedding next weekend is justification enough. I can’t wait to celebrate with her; her fiancé, Stephen; our families and friends; and to “wig out” for the new Mr. and Mrs. Wiggins! T-minus nine days to party time.
- A Snooty Statue: 69-year-old beloved local treasure, Snooty the manatee, died Saturday at the South Florida Museum. From tragedy comes triumph, though, as a petition is circulating to replace a Confederate memorial statue near the aquarium with one of Snooty. Get your typing fingers ready to sign, folks. It’s what Snooty would want.
- Aunt Amanda Babysits: Any visit home means special time with my nieces, and I’m going to be gifted with a WHOLE DAY during this particular trip. I’m hoping my mom will be on hand, too, and it’ll be a rainy day so we can just stay inside for a movie marathon. That’s realistic with a 1- and almost 4-year-old, right? Woof.
- “Sell Out” – Reel Big Fish: Truth be told, this came on while listening to Spotify’s current #ThrowbackThursday playlist. But, I can’t hear it without thinking of “cruising” with my fellow 9-year-olds and jamming to this new (to us) thing called ska. Oh, and how I’m a sellout for leaving a startup to resume my role as a corporate drone 😉
MILD GOT SPOILER AHEAD. If you didn’t watch this week’s S7 premiere, scroll on down. Allow me to complain, for just a moment, about Ed Sheeran’s appearance in Sunday’s episode. I know I juuust said I liked the guy, but that doesn’t mean I want him showing up in Westeros. What were they thinking? Grrrr…
- Sacramento: In more important news, I traveled to California’s capital city Sunday to prepare for orientation at my new company’s HQ. It was 105 degrees when I arrived, so my first impression was not the best. It turned out to be an interesting city, though, with decent food options and some incredibly nice people. I look forward to return visits in the near future, too!
- Volcano Candle: I don’t recall ever receiving a candle for my birthday before, but this year I was gifted with THREE. All of them smell amazing, but I chose to burn this scent first and it didn’t disappoint. You know how that feeling when you walk into a room and are instantly calmed, just from the smell? Yeah, that’s what this little guy does. It’s sheer perfection.
- Purging: Before moving into my new apartment, I had the help of some friends who were supportive of me purging the heck out of my space. While those efforts were super successful — I donated 10+ bags of goodies — I still find I need to cleanse my stock of stuff. I started diving in this past weekend and have the ultimate goal of finishing on Saturday. Who says being a grown-up isn’t fun? This is thrilling stuff, you guys!
- “Ruby Tuesday” – The Rolling Stones: Naturally, I always think of this song when saying goodbyes. It’s a gimme for that, but it’s also one of those songs that always transports me back in time and puts a smile on my face. I simply can’t hear it without getting a little misty-eyed and reminiscent of fond memories. Take that, Ed Sheeran.
Today was my last day with my former company, which was bittersweet to say the least. I learned so much and had the opportunity to work with some of the smartest, most talented people I’ve ever met. On Monday, I join Sutter Health, which will bring its own set of nerves and opportunities. Color me excited!
- Friends with Benedicts: Who doesn’t love a themed brunch? This pop-up has a few locations in SF, and I’ve now enjoyed their “Fight Club” and “Dad Jokes” menus. What I’m most pumped for, though? The “Game of Thrones” menu debuts this Sunday and runs through August — get your goblet and armor ready.
- Palmer’s Tavern: I’ve walked past this place approximately a hundred times but finally had plans to visit last night, for my sorority alumnae group’s monthly happy hour. Their mocktail was amazing, the brussels sprouts appetizer was delish and the people-watching was perfect. I’ll definitely be putting it into my regular rotation.
- Dumpling Time: Clearly, I’ve been on a food tour of SF lately… This delightful spot opened up near my former office a few weeks ago, and I managed to get a taste before leaving the area. It’s like dim sum on speed, with an incredible array of options — each one tastier than the next. We enjoyed every single thing we ordered, which speaks for itself.
- “Galway Girl” – Ed Sheeran: This tune has entered my ear waves more and more the past few weeks, and I’m not mad about it. My affection for Ed Sheeran is no match for Val’s from GBBO, but I absolutely adored Galway during my study abroad to Ireland and can’t help but smile each time I hear this one.
Good lord, I’m glad you only turn 30 once. I really ran into it head-on, with a tour of wine country, an A’s game with fireworks and a birthday bar crawl/fundraiser/karaoke jam sesh. (If you missed your chance to donate to the ACLU, you can still donate here on my behalf 😉). If you’re a schmuck like me and worked today, here’s a dreamy escape to get you through to Friday…
- Christopher Creek Winery: I joined this winery back in March, solely for the chance to reserve their house for my birthday weekend. I knew it was a long shot, and sure enough, the house wasn’t available for the holiday. But Lea and the CCW team didn’t disappoint — the poolside vibe was perfect to kick off my “Witty in Wine Country” festivities.
- Big John’s Market: We then headed to pick up our boxed lunches from this local shop, which was a steal at $15/person (+ gratuity). The sandwiches, pasta/potato salad and desserts were a welcome addition to our bellies otherwise only full of rosé and reds. Delish!
- Amphora Winery: Our second winery stop was this delightfully charming venue, which pulled out ALL the birthday stops. From a custom menu to chocolate truffles and a thoughtful birthday gift, Rick and the Amphora team were truly amazing. We will happily “revisit” both the wines and the tasting room.
- Pech Merle Winery: Finally, we made our way to this cool, cozy lounge. Jenna and the team were so accommodating and friendly, keeping the drinks flowing and the laughs going. The indoor swing was a huge hit, and they waived tasting fees for each bottle purchased — talk about a win-win!
Whether you wrote a letter, donated to the ACLU, called, messaged or joined me in person, I can honestly say this birthday was one for the record books. Thank you from the bottom of my little Witty heart! Xoxo ❤️💙
It should come as no surprise that I’m ex-haus-ted this week. It’s a good problem to have, given how many fun experiences and projects I’ve had lately. But it’s all caught up to me just in time for a wine country day Saturday and the big 3-0 Tuesday. Here’s what’s helping me attempt to unwind before then:
- Tracey Mammolito Photography: The woman responsible for those amazing photos I shared yesterday, y’all. Tracey’s energy was contagious, she made me feel comfortable (despite looking VERY silly in a public park) and her communication was spot-on. If you’re in SF and need a profesh photog, Tracey’s your girl.
- BachFantasy: This isn’t my first rodeo when it comes to betting on “The Bachelorette,” but it is my first season in a BachFantasy league. The recaps are entertaining, and the spreadsheet is a wet dream for OCD nerds like me. We’re up to the mid-season draft, and although I’m pretty far out of first, I’m hoping my dark horse picks will make a comeback soon.
- Sutter Health: Remember that career leap I mentioned yesterday? Well, today I can officially share I’ve accepted an offer to join Sutter Health as their Manager of Content Strategy and Multimedia! Sutter is a not-for-profit network of doctors, hospitals and health services for millions of Californians, and I couldn’t be more excited to call it my next home. I’ll have more to share soon, but at least that cat’s out of the bag 🙂
- “California Girls” – The Beach Boys: Call me old school, but there’s something about this classic that just puts a sunshiney smile on my face. I don’t know that I’m considered a true Californian at just a few years in, but my family can attest to my lifetime appreciation for The Beach Boys. Bonus: They remind me of my dad, and riding around in his beat-up ‘91 Ford Ranger.
It’s the longest day of the year today, and it sure does feel like it! Not that it’s a bad thing — I am quite amazed at how we’re already well into June and don’t mind a day off feeling a bit longer.
Why am I off, you ask? Well, my HS bestie is in town for a visit and we’re taking on San Francisco like never before. We have tickets to a comedy show, a comedy drag show, wine country and more… a jam-packed 72 hours is in our future.
She even brought a little southern sunshine with her, as our temps climb into the 80s and SF residents freak the F out over the heat. I’m not immune to freakouts myself — life without central A/C is no joke.
So although it’s been a few weeks of less-than-stellar obsessions, I promise to be back at it again like Damn, Daniel next Wednesday.
In the meantime, please enjoy…