Throwback Thursday: hey grrrl. wats ur screename?

Every Thursday, I dig out an old diary and share an entry sans editing (in hopes we’ll all see my grammar and apostrophe use improve) with a short commentary. If you like laughing with/at Young Ashley, feel free to use the handy search bar to the left and simply type “Throwback Thursday” and you’ll find the whole archive. Thanks for reading!

Tuesday Jun 5, 2000

Dear Libby, 

I just got off aol. I was talking to, like, 4 people! I talked to my friend, Keri, Benjamin, Tom, and my cousin, Becky. Right when I got on, Benjamin goes “Wassup?!” Then Tom, “Hey Ashley.” and then Keri “Hey!” Then I say hi to Becky. She asked me what I was up to and I said talking to my friend Benjamin. Of course she being my older and annoying, yet cool cuz, she says “Benjamin! Oh you go Ashley!” And I just tell her to shut up. So then there’s 3 other peeps sending me im’s so every other second and a half I hear electronic chimes. And right when I go to type an answer to someone, I’m interupted by another peep. 

Then Becky asked what Benjamin’s screename was. (Boy am I lucky I didn’t mention Tom was on!) I told her that I refused to tell her. She asked me if I wanted to her to ask him out for me! I was like, “NO!!!”

Luckily she signed off after that. Then Benjamin sent me an e-mail, he just said that he wasn’t mad, and that he was practically over Jocelyn dumping him. Then that he’s had a really bad attitude towards his parents, especially when he wakes up in the morning, hello Benjamin! Typical teenager!

Then I had to sign off after chatting with Benjamin and Tom. But Keri, I told her I was talking to three other people – she would not shut up! 

Then my aunt Laurie called and asked if I wanted to stay at her house for a while, so her I am! 10:30 @ night, laying on a yellow flowered quilt in her guest bedroom, writing in you. 

I’m tired, igg.

-Ashley

Yikes. Remember those days? Excitedly flipping between AIM boxes, choosing just the right lyrics for an away message and customizing your profile? I probably used blue comic sans against a yellow background, just to make things bright enough. Or may it was blue with fuschia. Who knows? Whatever it was, I’m sure it was really beautiful.

It’s embarrassing that I used the same program to chat with Brandon as I did with virtually all of my college boyfriends at at least one point in time. It’s probably for the best that I changed my screename constantly – I think it started out as Ashapapple229 (a supposedly clever combination of Ashley and apple, I guess), then to FiddleFreak06 (Yeah, we get it, you play violin and you graduate high school in 2006), SuperConnected 29 (GUESS WHEN MY BIRTHDAY IS!!), and eventually landed on YAYitisAshley (that’s what I assumed people exclaimed when they saw me sign in). My brothers both copied me. And some of their friends. One night as a prank or something, I was bombarded by messages from YAYitisCorey, YAYitisRyan, YAYitisNick, and YAYitisTATE.

The good news is that I didn’t end my conversations with any of my conversations with college boyfriends “igg” (“I gotta go” for those of you who weren’t cool enough for that one. I think around my senior year of high school, I started using correct punctuation and spelling in my instant messages, so that by the time I stopped using AIM, I was speaking like someone who shouldn’t be using AIM.

Good thing we’ve moved on from something as foolish as AIM and we’ve moved onto much more sophisticated technology like SnapChat and that one iphone app where you rate your Facebook connections on appearance to increase your likelihood of casual hookups.

Humans are great, aren’t we?

Nope.

Nope.

Brunch with B-Crox: White Cheese & Chicken Lasagna

About a year ago, two of my friends and I started a monthly get-together for a nice dinner. I think the idea was to pass it around and change the location each time, but it always ended up being at my place. I was happy about this – I didn’t really want to share the burden. Around then, I started realizing that I enjoyed cooking almost as much as I enjoyed baking. There’s something incredibly depressing about preparing a really wonderful meal and having no one to share it with.

Over the summer, I was able to share some really nice food with them: maple-glazed pork chops with gnocchi and parmesan cheese; East Indian curry (served on jasmine rice, topped with choices of fruit, peppers, and nuts); Dutch babies for a Christmas-style brunch in the middle of October; slowcooker turkey and cranberry dressing, pizza with carmelized onions, halved grapes & balsamic glaze….all usually paired with wine or beer brought by Nicole or Andrea, and then ending with dessert (french silk pie eaten directly from the pan, frozen yogurt with canteloupe…) we ate while sprawled on the couch, complaining that we felt enormous. Somewhere along the line, they gave me the nickname B-Crocks – an ironic abbreviation of Betty Crocker that made me feel simultaneously adorable and badass. I solidified the badassery by temporarily tagging my kitchen wall.

I thought about leaving it, but I couldn't find a decent place for the fridge AND display my tag.

I thought about leaving it, but I couldn’t find a decent place for the fridge AND display my tag.

When I had my housewarming party a few weeks ago, Andrea and Nicole presented me with a gift of a hula hoop (which I used once and has been leaning against a wall after it fell around my ankles) and a handmade installment of miniature frames that spell out B-Crox. It looks pretty awesome in my kitchen.

I'm real good at hanging things in straight lines.

I’m real good at hanging things in straight lines.

Nicole was actually the one who gave me the idea for a weekly B-Crox post, and in a picturesque turn of events, Andrea joined me for my first meal of Brunch with B-Crox: White Cheese & Chicken Lasagna.

This is a recipe I found on Pinterest (where else do people get recipes?) and modified for a smaller sized pan (I think a giant pan of lasagna is about as depressing as just eating cookie dough for dinner). If you’re cooking for a large group, a family, have room in the freezer, or want to see fancy pictures and well-written directions, you can use the original recipe. The only real difference between this recipe and the one below is that I used fresh mozzarella that was marinated in olive oil and italian seasoning instead of plain shredded mozzarella – mainly because it was on sale and I really wanted fresh mozzarella.

White Cheese & Chicken Lasagna

Ingredients:

  • 4-5 lasagna noodles, cooked (because duh)
  • 1/4 cup butter (that’s half a stick, Einstein)
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (avoid cutting off finger tips)
  • a few shakes of salt
  • 1 cup Chicken broth (the cheapest, because ain’t nobody got cash for that, Swanson)
  • 3/4 cup milk (not melk, you mouth-breather)
  • 8oz. fresh mozzerella cheese (Oh, you think you all fancy, don’t you?)
  • 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese (get the stuff that is cheaper that Kraft and has a more attractive label)
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • a few grinds of black pepper
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese (good luck finding something to do with the leftovers)
  • 2 disturbingly large chicken breasts, cooked and cubed
  • 1/2 package (10 oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed & drained
  • 1/2 tablespoon of fresh parsley you don’t actually need because it tastes like nothing, so don’t waste your time
Are you ready for this cheesy goodness that is the opposite of heart healthy?

Are you ready for this cheesy goodness that is the opposite of heart healthy?

Directions:

  1. Invite your friend over for dinner via text/call/direct tweet. Inform her you’re making something awesome and she’s going to want to eat it. Turn on some good music (I chose Dead Horses after seeing them a few nights earlier) and cook your noodles. Let your friend in the front door.
  2. Melt the butter in a saucepan, then add the onion and garlic, cooking till tender. Stir it too. You don’t want to scrub that crap. Shake the salt over the mixture a bit, and then add the flour. Simmer till it’s bubbly and looks weird.
  3. Tell your friend to mix in the broth and milk and boil because you just realized you have to cube and cook the chicken. Make sure she stirs it constantly, then throw half of the fresh mozzarella and a bunch of the parmesan in her pan while you cook the chicken in olive oil & oregano.
  4. Season the sauce with basil, oregano and that freshly ground pepper. Grind that pepper, baby!
  5. Using a 9×9 cake pan you might have taken from your mother, layer your lasagna in the following order: 1/3 sauce on bottom, 1/3 of the noodles, ALL of the ricotta & chicken, 1/3 of the noodles, 1/4 of the sauce, the spinach (lookit that green stuff! You so fancy!), the remaining mozzarella cheese (if it’s in the little balls like mine was, cut these into thirds and distribute evenly) and a bunch of parmesan cheese.
  6. Top with the last of the noodles and remaining sauce. If you were stupid and bought parsley, I guess you can sprinkle it now. Otherwise, just put a little more basil, ground pepper, and parmesan cheese over the sauce.
  7. Bake for 35-40 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving with pink lemonade and eating on your front porch while groaning and saying “Omigod. This is so good.”
  8. Go back inside because there are too many spiders and weird bugs.
Awesome friend enjoying awesome food

Awesome friend enjoying awesome food

Unlike most lasagnas, I don't recommend storing leftovers on the sidewalk. This keeps best if in tupperware in the fridge.

Unlike most lasagnas, I don’t recommend storing leftovers on the sidewalk. This keeps best if in tupperware in the fridge.

Enjoy your food! There are starving kids in Ethiopia that won’t benefit from your gluttony.

Throwback Thursday: How to be a Doormat

Every Thursday, I dig out an old diary and share an entry sans editing (in hopes we’ll all see my grammar and apostrophe use improve) with a short commentary. If you like laughing with/at Young Ashley, feel free to use the handy search bar to the right and simply type “Throwback Thursday” and you’ll find the whole archive. Thanks for reading!

Monday May 29, 2000

Dear Libby, 

Sorry, but I was just thinking about what an idiot I am. Did I tell you the Jocelyn dumped Benjamin? Well, the other day, I wrote Benjamin an e-mail saying: 

    Ben, I’m sorry to hear about Jocelyn dumping you. But If you need to talk, I’m here for ya. Just tell tell me when to get on aol or just e-mail me. 

    luv ya, ashley. 

    P.S. :*(sealed with a kiss.)

I am such an idiot! ‘sealed with a kiss’?!? How stupidly insane can a person get? Probably no lower than me! But eww! Sealed with a kiss? Ugg! I can’t believe I put that. 

~*Ashley*~

I had yet to develop empathy – I just figured that since he wasn’t with Jocelyn, it was somebody else’s turn to be his girlfriend. I expected  he would be so taken with my willingness to tie up the phone line to IM him on AOL that he would drop a note, declaring his love into the slot of my locker. As you can probably guess, this isn’t how things went.

Before I roll my eyes so many times they get stuck like that, I’d like to offer Young Ashley some advice:

When pouncing on a dude who’s on the rebound, it’s best to not remind him that he was just unceremoniously dumped by a girl. I know you haven’t been romantically disappointed yet, so you don’t understand that the purpose of post-breakup flirtation is to swiftly bolster one’s ego. Also, from what I remember, he wasn’t flirting with you, so calm the hell down and put up your away message with the N’Sync lyrics.  Was ‘luv ya’ a casual way to sign emails or were you actually telling him you loved him? And was it necessary to note that you were signing it with a kiss? The emoticon wasn’t enough? Because seriously, you are the epitome of Crazy Girl right now. You’re the exact opposite of “suttle” (I’m assuming that’s how you’d spell it). The sneakier way of doing this would have just been to say, “BENJAMIN I LUV U. LETS DATE NOW THAT UR SINGLE!!!!!!!!!11 LUV U LOTZ, ASH” You don’t know what they are, but you are doing the exact opposite of what The Rules advise.

crazy-girl-YouTube

I have a headache. I forgot that how often I roll my eyes when reading these old diaries.

To My Devoted Readers…

I’m sorry I haven’t been posting much lately. Instead of just articulating the facade, I’ve been out living (going to foggy basement parties, having spontaneous drinks with friends, dancing with new friends, running color runs, playing impromptu bluegrass concerts with my uncle, hosting parties, and occasionally giving out my number to boys I probably shouldn’t). It’s been fantastic. I highly recommend you stop looking at a screen as soon as you’re done reading this. Have you seen real life lately? It can be really beautiful. Everything is Blooming, folks. 

collage

I know that I told you my vacation from Throwback Thursday was only going to be for the month of May. It’s been over two months since I shared a diary entry. Young Ashley might be thrilled, but I’m not too proud of it. I started something and I didn’t follow through. I am supremely irritated when people do that, so I’m sorry that I’ve failed you. I know a lot of people really enjoyed those. This is going to change. Throwback Thursday is coming back this week. 

I had a housewarming party last weekend to break in my new place. Two of my closest friends made me a fantastic gift that inspired a new weekly post called Brunch with B-Crox. You can expect a recipe and short anecdote with my usual self-deprecating banter and weird pictures. My definition of Brunch is a pretty vague one, so it might not always be a breakfast recipe. And don’t worry, I’ll explain the B-Crox thing.

Since many people find my blog by some combination of the terms “seeing my ex” and “what to do,” I’m considering doing some sort of dating advice. I’m sort of hoping I’ll start following my own advice too. That would be neat. This is still in the brainstorming stages, but I figure that since I’ve dated people before and have an opinion, I’m qualified to tell people what to do. It’s real scientific.

I’m going on vacation next week. I’m not counting or anything, but I have exactly eleven days until I’m in the middle of the woods without 3g access. I have plans to read about three pages of Infinite Jest before falling asleep on the beach and/or day-drinking. Don’t worry though, you’ll still get your posts. If I don’t you can send me messages on Facebook about how you’re really disappointed in me – not mad, just really disappointed.