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10 Years, 10 Friends, 10 Days: The Little Cousins

By concerts, conversations, events, fabio the hamster, guest posts, hot lead singers of bands, las vegas, links, little cousins, lj, memories, milestones, music, ruling at life, what have you been doing for the last 10 years? 4 Comments


Guest post #2 comes to you from two of the four infamous little cousins. There are actually a lot more little cousins in my family, but I’d bet money this blog wouldn’t exist right now if I hadn’t spent three months living with these cousins in Vegas back in 2004. They were a constant source of entertainment and my inspiration to write every single day while I was out there. Sometimes I posted three times a day just because they made me laugh so hard.

Courtney: Shortly after moving out to Las Vegas, NV my siblings and I were informed that our cousin Lisa was going to be moving in with us for a while.

Kristin: I will always remember when my mom told us that Lisa was moving in with us. We could hardly wait for her to arrive, and all of us kids thought we were so cool, having our big cousin as a houseguest. We were all CRAZY excited, but we didn’t know how awesome it would be. Just the prospect of having our older cousin living with us was cool enough. Like the nerds Courtney and I were, we ran around the block bragging to our neighbors/friends that Lisa was moving in.

Courtney: My little sister’s room was quickly transformed into sleepover central when the bunk beds were put in along with a sweet TV with TiVo, (and, of course, Fabio the hamster).

Kristin: One of the best nights Lisa told us that she had a surprise for us and that she was taking us out for the night. After finding out we would be leaving soon, Court and I scrambled to figure out what to wear.

Courtney: My mom dressed me up in an outfit I would absolutely regret wearing later that night. Let me paint you a picture, I was wearing jeans a black t-shirt with a purple sparkly oversized cardigan. I looked like a Grandma.

Lisa: Oh, you don’t have to paint a picture. Here you go. =)


Kristin: Lisa did our hair and makeup, and then we were off. Lisa brought us into the House of Blues restaurant, where we ate delicious food and had some killer Banana Pudding for dessert.

Courtney: As we were finishing up dinner, she surprised us with tickets to the Simple Plan/MxPx concert.


Kristin: It was the best night EVER! When Lisa surprised us with the tickets, and we FREAKED OUT. It was the coolest thing, and we were OBSESSED with Simple Plan.

Courtney: We had been obsessing over Simple Plan for months. Obsessing includes buying trucker hats, patches for the hats, buying posters, buying wrist bands, and blasting music in the car.

Kristin: It’s true. We were OBSESSED with Simple Plan. It was an amazing show, but Courtney passed out for the last band, MXPX. We laughed so hard, because it was so loud, and so exciting, but Court was sound asleep.

Courtney: I didn’t fall asleep for the entire last band! After shrieking and screaming lyrics while Simple Plan performed, it was time for MXPX to take the stage, and it turned out I couldn’t hang. MXPX, quite literally the loudest band ever, were awesome, but I found my mind and body had different things in mind. I wanted to dance and yell, but my body decided that falling asleep during a concert was a better idea—and that was just sad. While I never actually fell asleep, I remember sitting back on the seat for one song because I was so tired.

Kristin: Whatever, Court.

Courtney: Upon arriving home, we proudly told our parents that we were partially deaf from the loudness of the concert, and then proceeded to fall asleep while Lisa wrote a blog entry about our excursion.

Kristin: All in all it was probably the coolest thing we’d ever done while living in Vegas.

Courtney: It was my first real concert and Simple Plan was definitely some of the best performers I’ve seen live.

Kristin: There were a ton of other perks that accompanied Lisa living with us. Courtney, Ellie, and I convinced my mom for a few weeks that Fridays were OPTIONAL school days, so instead of school we went to the Fashion Show Mall.


Courtney: We would tell her, “Friday this week is optional! I swear we’re watching movies in every class!”

Kristin: Lisa drove us around Vegas while we screamed the words to countless Sugarcult and Simple Plan songs.

Courtney: There really was nothing like screaming “Stuck in America” by Sugarcult to the guards at the gate in our neighborhood.


Kristin: Looking back now, that was most likely TOTALLLY embarrassing for you L, BUT IT WAS AWESOME for us.

Lisa: Not as embarrassing as the day you idiots started ripping the security stickers off the CDs at Barnes & Noble and throwing them through the detector to set the alarms off. Or the day you wouldn’t stop going up the down escalator at the mall and then I had to take you to Build-A-Bear


Kristin: Lisa drove us to the movies, she took us out to eat, and she took us to SKYZONE! Wall-to-wall trampolines, you can’t find anything much more awesome than that. We would look forward to Lisa taking us there all week. And once again we thought we were so cool every time Lisa took us out somewhere.


Courtney: We wouldn’t have done half of the stuff we did if she didn’t live with us. We would have never discovered the trampoline place, or have gone to the concert, or play American Idol by the pool with heels on. It would have been dull without her there.

Kristin: Samantha’s room was the THE PLACE to be in our house, because that’s where Lisa was.

Lisa: The craziest things happened in that room. I mean, what are we doing here? Am I singing into the TiVo remote?


Kristin: She showed us the ways of TiVo, and introduced us to “America Dreams”, as well as countless bands and songs we’d never heard before.

Courtney: The best nights were when “American Dreams” would be on and all of us girls would be glued to the TV for the hour it was on, or when Simple Plan would debut their new videos on MTV and we would watch them over and over again. It absolutely amazed us that Lisa could rewind live TV — we never had TiVo before.

Kristin: We also watched and giggled as she posted on her LiveJournal every night. The stories on the blog about Vegas never get old. Fabio the hamster is a classic, and it still cracks me up every time.


(Here is a picture of Fabio the hamster, a brief mention of him potentially being in imminent danger, a long post about him being in imminent danger, and a short post about him being in imminent danger.)

Lisa: You know what else was embarrassing? The fact that I drove around with that stupid tumbleweed in the rear window of the Malibu the entire time I lived there.


Kristin: I must say though, that the most memorable thing that happened while Lisa lived with us was the dildo incident.

Lisa: Nothing is more embarrassing than the fact we are suddenly discussing a dildo on the front page of my blog right now.

Kristin: I am confident in saying that it was the FUNNIEST moment of my life. I went to college in 2008 and one night we were telling funny stories, and of course, I told the dildo story. I wanted to tell it just right, so I got onto Lisa’s blog and read it from there. Everyone lost it. I could hardly read it though the tears I was laughing so hard. It was just so ridicules. Dinner screeched to a halt when our neighbor, Shelli, came busting through our front door and started shouting for my parents. Everyone though Samantha and Amy must have died or done something terribly wrong, but it turned out that they were outside on their motor scooters with a giant dildo in their hands. Lisa and I decided to stay and eat, but the laughter and screams of outrage from my dad clued us in. We both just sat there laughing while listening to all the yelling.

Courtney: I love that Lisa blogged while we were out in Las Vegas because every time I get bored I’ll click on one of the many Fabio stories, or other memories from Vegas and smile. It was one of my favorite places to live and I love reading about all of the crazy and silly things we did.

Lisa: Here I am blogging in Vegas. Can’t say much has changed. I sit on the couch now. =)

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Kristin: Looking back through Lisa’s blog is like reliving Vegas and all the adventures she took us on. And half the time the stories were so crazy that no one believes them until we steer them toward her blog. That year in Vegas was the most fun out of them all, and I’m not just saying that. It really was, and I miss it!!!! Everyone stay tuned for the crazy stories to come when we get the old group back together and party in Vegas!! (WE HAVE TO DO THIS.)

Lisa: Oh, that is definitely happening. If only so I can document the entire experience right here. Thank you guys so much for this. You two, Sam and Franky are the best cousins a girl could ask for, and I miss you! I can’t wait to see you in a few weeks. =)


Constant with a K

By concerts, employment, fabio the hamster, hot lead singers of bands, las vegas, little cousins, lj, memories, music, not ruling at life, top notch communication blunders 2 Comments

The other night I saw Jack’s Mannequin at the Norva. It made me think of my time in Las Vegas – sharing a bunk bed with my 10-year-old cousin, laying on the floor, idly tapping out some LJ entries to the tune of Andrew McMahon’s irresistible voice (still Something Corporate back then) while I casually sipped glass of wine. The window would be open, and the sounds of the little cousins chattering would echo through the house. It was funny, at first I hated how loud that house was, but when I left, I couldn’t stand the sound of silence for quite a few months. My idea of quiet became the muffled sounds of laughter and video games drifting up the stairs while the door was cracked and the cat kept trying to sneak in. The occasional witty comment I overheard was enough to keep me inspired and keep me writing whatever LJ work of art I was creating at the time. And Fabio the Hamster. He could keep me going all night long.

You know I used to keep a mini notebook in my purse? I used to write down interesting quotes and song lyrics and funny ideas all day long and then blog about them later. I concentrated so hard to writing these hysterically satirical posts that I usually forgot I was supposed to be figuring out what to do with my life. Those were the LJ’s golden days. I remember now.

You know what else I remember now? My favorite lyrics to "Konstantine" by Something Corporate.

"I had these dreams in them I learned to play guitar
Maybe cross the country
Become a rock star."

Before MySpace; before Facebook; before my vapid second blog about materialistic bullshit that requires zero creativity, the LJ was my constant source of inspiration. Sure, it made you laugh, but best of all? It made me laugh. Constantly.

There was no writer’s block, and there was no wasting all my silly thoughts in a one-sentence status update. Whatever happened to composing an entire thought? An entire anecdote? An entire story?

Maybe it’s because I spend my days at work writing proposals. It’s not the most creative writing, but it’s a lot of writing. Maybe I just get it all out of my system at work, and I don’t feel like writing for fun anymore. 

Speaking of writing proposals at work – today a person who was supposed to be feeding me some narrative for a program management plan sent me some text. As I read the first few sentences, I grew suspicious of the fact that it sounded extremely too general and nothing like the rest of his writing. Needless to say, I Googled "program management" and soon came to the realization that he copied the entire program mangement plan from freaking Wikipedia.

Anyway, maybe someday Something Corporate will get back together. And maybe someday, I’ll be inspired to bang out some hysterically satirical posts again. Maybe soon.

“Rollin’ Wit Tha Homies”

By fabio the hamster, not ruling at life 2 Comments

Yesterday I happened to be strolling through Delia’s in the Freehold mall and I came across a cute grey t-shirt with three hamsters on it. They were running in those rolly balls, and the shirt said, “Rollin’ Wit Tha Homies.” It was awesome. I wanted to buy it, but I opted not to because I have no money because I have no job because I have no direction in life. So, I just looked up at it for a few moments and sighed dreamily and thought of Fabio.

Leaving Las Vegas

By fabio the hamster, las vegas, little cousins, memories 2 Comments

I spent my last morning in Vegas playing with Fabio.  I let him scamper around on my computer a bit – I think he wanted to type his own journal entry, but it looked kind of like this:


Fabio is awesome.  He will be missed by the LJ readers, I’m sure.

I spent my last afternoon in Vegas taking my brother to the In’N’Out for a cheeseburger and to the Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay.  It was a good time.

I spent my last night in Vegas jumping around in a room full of huge trampolines with my little cousins, the next door neighbors, and my brother.  I can’t even explain how much fun we had.  It was awesome.


After dinner at Jersey Mike’s, we drove home – music blasting, the girls screaming, “Tumbleweeds RULE!” out the windows to the passing cars.  We scared the security gate guys one more time with MxPx blaring and everyone singing to me.  “Today’s the day you’re LEAVING and tomorrow you’ll be GONE.  You’re in my heart and on my mind, I will bring you ALONG.  EVERYTHING SUCKS WHEN YOU’RE GONE!”  It was a car ride I will never forget.


By conversations, fabio the hamster, little cousins 7 Comments

So, I came home from Wal-Mart with Kristin, and Sammy was trudging up the stairs with tears in her eyes.

“Whoa, whoa. What’s the matter?” I asked.

“I’m punished.”

“For what?”

“For nothing.”

“Well, okay, what did you supposedly do?”

“For being mean to Franky. But I wasn’t,” she stated.

“Right,” I said. “Well, come upstairs. We’ll put on Nickelodeon.”

I held out my hand and she took it and we headed up to our room.

“Let’s play some cards,” I said. “You figure out how to get these open and I’m gonna put on my pajamas. I’ll be right back.”

When I came back, Sammy was wandering aimlessly around the hallway outside her room.

“What are you doing? Where are the cards?”

“I’m not even allowed in my room.”

“Tell your mom you’re going to bed.”

“Oh. Okay.”

So, Sammy said she was going to bed and we watched some SpongeBob and started playing a game of War with my new Las Vegas cards.

“Can I shuffle the cards?” Sammy asked.

“No, you’re punished. I shuffle,” I replied.

We played War through two episodes of Full House on Nick @ Nite and we were still playing when Ellie came through the door with Kristin – who was wearing a baseball helmet, complete with face mask.

“What in the hell are you wearing?” I asked. “Be quiet. Sammy’s punished.”

“I thought there was a bad guy.”

“Has she lost her mind?” I looked toward Ellie.

Ellie nodded, then pointed at Sammy. “What did she do?”

“I didn’t do anything,” Sammy blurted out.

“She was mean to Franky.”


“Right. Okay, be quiet. We’re playing War.”

Sammy and I continued our game through an episode of The Cosby Show when, all of a sudden, we heard a noise and looked through the bathroom into Courtney’s room to see my uncle closing the window.

“Shit, your dad,” I whispered.

Sammy’s eyes got real big. “Oh no, he’s going to kill me. I’m scared.”

I grabbed her cards and threw them at Ellie. “Get in your bed!”

She scrambled noisily up her ladder and flopped onto her bed. “Is he really there?”

Ellie, Kristin and I were trying really hard not to laugh – or to make eye contact with my uncle in the next room. Ellie and I kept playing War (don’t ever play War with her, she cheats) until I won in an amazing double War over two tens and two aces.

“Where’s Kristin?” Sammy asked from her bed.

“Who knows. Probably in her room admiring herself in the mirror with that damn helmet on,” I answered sarcastically.

Ellie pointed at the helmet on the floor in front of me.


“I heard something! Fabio! Fabio!”

“Sam, be quiet.”

“Are you guys going to bed now? Go to bed now,” she said.


Kristin came back and she and Ellie left the room a few minutes after that. Then I began writing this journal entry and Sammy creeped down the ladder to see what I was giggling about.

“Lisa. Lisa. Lisa! Lisa. Lisa! Lisa!”


“What are you writing about?”


“Let me read it, dinklebird. What does ‘trugged’ mean? What are we gonna say if my dad knows? Ah heard sum’m. There’s some’n at the doa. What are we gonna say? I’m skerred.”

“Shh. What’s with the Georgia accent? It’s says ‘trudging’, not ‘trugged’. Be quiet. You’re punished, remember?”

After I finished rereading and editing this entry with Sammy’s help, I rolled over (remember: I type on lying on my stomach on the floor) and tickled her.

“Ooh. Don’t make me laugh at this time of night!” She yelped. “Didja hurr sum’m?”

“You’re nuts. Bed. Now. Punished.”