From Dollars To Rupees To Smiles On The Streets of Bombay

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The vada pao, Indian burgers

As beautiful as the world is, there is always a part of me that is saddened by the impoverished, less fortunate people and animals I encounter when traveling. It’s not unusual for me to return home carrying various amounts of guilt.

I donate to a slew of organizations including the ASPCA, International Rescue Committee, Oxfam, Best Friends Society, Medecins Sans Frontieres and Heifer International. I carry cat and dog food, and am always buying animals food on the go. Continue reading

I Dated A Married Dude And All I Got Was a Vibrating Necklace

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The night we hooked up.

So I dated a married dude. There, I said it. If I had a girlfriend that was having an affair with a married man, I’d have told her what a fool she was. Until it happened to me. I met Henry at a tech conference in Boston in 2007. I stared at the back of his neck for three days and thought, “That guy is so cute and so gay.” Henry was a Brit – why do all the European men wear their clothes so tight? I met up with him and his boss for cocktails and we all exchanged info. Turned out Henry was married with a little girl, and was the head of development for a video games company in London.

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My Dead Best Friend’s Deodorant

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My best friend Anne died suddenly from a brain aneurysm almost two years ago. It was devastating and still is. To lose that one person that really gets you. We used to say we were each others’ life partners. She had a husband but if we were both gay, we would totally be together. I was never close with her husband until after she died. At the hospital when she was on life support, he was nothing but kind and gracious with me. I was her last roommate before she moved in with him, so in a sense I felt like the other woman at the hospital with his family.

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The Year In Woods – 2013

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Happy New Year good friends near and far! Reflecting on this past year has been quite difficult, actually I’d say the second hardest year of my life next to Dad’s murder arrest. I have shed more tears and felt such loss, but as they say, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. So here I am to prove it. But I have to ask, who the fuck are these THEY people?

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January I hit the ground running as Mom’s breast cancer was a bit more serious than originally expected. At first her treatment post-surgery was radiation. I like to call this “cancer-lite.” But then her doctor prescribed 4 rounds of chemo and that’s when it got real. City of Hope is the best hospital ever and she got rockstar treatment. Now cancer-free 6 months, cheers to that! Continue reading

The Shame Shack

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In May 1999 I took part in a volunteer mission with a non-profit organization called Airline Ambassadors. My BFF Anne was a flight attendant for American Airlines. She signed us up with three other friends, making up a total group of 26 flight attendants and friends to trek through the Himalayan region of Nepal, delivering medical and school supplies to orphanages. Being an over-preparer for trips, I went trail running twice daily to ensure that I was in the best shape possible. I also bought extensive camping supplies, including iodine tablets for water, to prevent any type of water-born illnesses.

I’d be damned if I was going to get sick on this trek. Anne and I put the iodine tablets in our Nalgene bottles daily, making sure to only use that special water to drink and brush our teeth with. The porters even assured us that all the water they cooked with was boiled for purification, guaranteeing us further safety. But what we did notice, was that the porters washed our dishes in stream water, which was not filtered. Continue reading

The Side Effects of Binge-Watching TV Shows

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I didn’t even know binge-watching was a term. I thought I was just blazing the trail by being super productive and watching entire seasons of a popular show on Netflix in a few sittings. I kept thinking about those poor saps who watched one episode a week with commercials, then left with a cliffhanger.

My first victim was Battlestar Galactica. My good friend Ferris told me for two years how great this show was but I didn’t believe him. Out of sheer boredom I gave it a shot and boy was I hooked. I was staying up until 3am during the week, watching five episodes a night, with red wine of course. But the next night I always had to rewatch the last episode because I’d fallen asleep. I heard cylons flying above my apartment at night. I downloaded the BSG soundtrack for my gym playlist. I used the word frakking. I wanted to be buff like the rest of the fleet. I wanted to wear dark khakis, be Starbuck’s bff and save the universe together. Continue reading

Saying Goodbye To My Best Friend – Anne Hurley Obot

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Last Wednesday February thirteenth, my very best friend in the world, my BFF, my Anne, suffered an aneurysm and died. She left behind a loving husband, a precious three year old son, an incredibly loving family of Hurleys, and a slew of amazing friends from around the globe. I’ve known Anne for thirty years since we were classmates at Westlake High School. We used to say we were hetero life partners and even had to convince our neighbors when we lived together that we weren’t gay. We loved each other that much. She was beautiful, she was a ham. She stole Carrie Fisher’s pillow case on a flight and gave it to me for my birthday.

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We hiked Half Dome in Yosemite on our birthdays one September. We stayed up a bit late the night before polishing off some serious wine, and celebrated afterwards with more wine, and pizza.

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