Thursday, December 18, 2008

Bet Your Bottom Dollar

What do you do when one male friend of yours is 100% sure another male friend is interested while you are 101% sure that particular young man is not interested?
You bet one male friend $50 that another male friend will never ever bust a move.
Voila - instant pay day! :-)


As I talked with my friends the other evening, one young man looked at me and started laughing, then said, "You remind me of Melissa Joan Hart so much right now I can't even take it!"

Do you think maybe he was accusing me of being a witch? :-)

For those of you who don't know, she is the star of "Sabrina the Teenage Witch," and my blog's namesake "Clarissa Explains it All."

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Hello. My name is Larissa and I am a buddyaholic. I've faced this problem as long as I have been perceptive of men. I would like to say I have been sober for a few years, or even weeks, but I have not conquered this addiction.

There is one noun, which occasionally becomes a verb, that we single folks have hauntingly plastered in the forefront of our minds practically 24/7 - "Date."

Did you shudder?

I have always been highly sought after in the company of the male gender. I know, without a doubt, they adore me. How is this a problem, you ask? Anyone ever seen "My Best Friend's Wedding?" Consider me Julia Roberts. I am the proverbial best friend.

I don't blame them - little puppy dog cute, bubbly, steady supply of cookies and other victuals, social, complimentary, intelligent - of course you'd like someone like that around. I just assume men aren't interested in me and only want a temporary solution to some sort of friendship/dating woe, so naturally they want to be my buddy and nothing more - this is the err of my ways - the "buddy zone."

I was recently reprimanded by a male friend for always buddy-fying men - he claims I never even give them a chance. I fight back, "I would rather have them as a friend than nothing at all! They aren't interested and if I act like they are, they'll get weirded out and I'll lose them altogether! If a guy wants this luscious commodity, he will ask me on a date." My male friend begs to differ. I just didn't get it though. No comprehendo.

In the not-too-distant-past, however, I had the unfortunate experience of thinking a man was interested, only to realize he was just "buddy-fying" me. I felt an idiot and finally understood what I've been doing all these years.

How many men have I mistakenly placed in that zone without realizing they really were interested? How many opportunities have I wasted? (As I write this, I still find it an ever-so-illusive concept that anyone would be interested, although there is another part of me that thinks of course they would be)

I vow, here and now, to become sober from my buddyaholism - I will give all future males the benefit of the doubt before using the "F" word - just friends.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Indecent Proposal

I have a long history of NCP - non-commital proposals.
Sunday night, history repeated itself.
I am sitting with a group of my friends, innocently enjoying the first half of "Return of the King," when I hear this charming male voice, "Larissa, will you marry me?" Huh?
Of course, I yell out, "Yes!" before I even know who requested my hand.
Then I hear another male voice, "No, she's mine!"
Then, yet a third, "No, no! She promised she's mine because I bought her a burger!"
I have a problem telling guys that if they buy me a burger, my heart is theirs forever. Oops.
I approached two of these gentlemen last night to ask if they had come to some sort of compromise. Nope. They decided a no-holds-barred rumble would be the best way to come to a victor.
The sad truth?
The only reason they vie for my hand is for my peanut butter pie and homemade oreos. They must figure marriage to me is but a small price to pay for a lifetime supply of treats.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

My Mind is Still on Vacation

I reluctantly schlepped myself out of bed yesterday morning to face the harsh reality present before me - the time had come to return to drudgery.
I swept my hair back into an aesthetically pleasing do and carried through the rest of my morning routine feeling as if I were in some sort of foggy, mud-laden chasm. Actually, the marvel of the day was simply that I felt invigorated and ready to conquer my nemesis of a to-do list.
I arrived at work, briskly made my entrance into the department, only to loudly proclaim, "I'm an idiot!" as I set down my belongings and headed right back out the door.
Somehow, I managed to leave my work laptop at home.

Friday, November 21, 2008

I Survived!

I will summarize this for all of you who don't want to read the entire entry.
I drove on dirt roads for two hours, flew out of an airport in a crop duster, and am still alive. So, just sit right back and you'll hear a tale, a tale of a fateful trip...

Wednesday morning, November 19, I began my trek from Kearney, Nebraska to Hays, Kansas. The fact that when you read those city names and you have never heard of these places is clue number one that my little journey was going to be a problem.
Soon enough, I was told to turn down a road, I thought surely this was just construction. I thought wrong. For the next two hours I was driving down roads with no names. My directions were simply, "Turn right in 1.6 miles, turn left in 3.7 miles." Signs were posted stating, "No Maintenance Roads." I passed maybe, maybe seven vehicles in those two hours - all of which were either farm machinery or four-wheel drive. These roads were not even on the map, so I couldn't figure out where I was to then maneuver my way to pavement. I was praying the entire time - "Please don't let me get a flat tire, PLEASE bless that this is actually a road and not another cow/tractor path."

Miraculously, I conquered the dirt. The next morning, my little experience was topped off with my departing flight. The airport had no gates, they took us all through security as our flight was boarding, and there were a grand total of 8 people on the plane - including the pilot and copilot.

For your viewing enjoyment, below I have posted photos of the roads and the airport. Laugh it up, fuzzball. (if anyone references that quote, my opinion of you will definitely elevate)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


None of you commented on my last blog, yo - I was seriously looking for participation!

I am in Omaha, Nebraska. Wait, no, Kearny, Nebraska. Tomorrow I venture to Hays, Kansas.
I have to say these are the least exciting places I've gotten to go for work, however, I still managed to find my friend Aaron to have lunch with! (at a delicioso place named Spezia)
Today I:
1. Had no one sitting next to me on both of my flights.
2. Gave a presentation for an hour and a half! A new record for me - my blessing of the gift of gab keeps getting better and better...or worse...depending on how you see things...
3. Got to use the BIG stall in the airport bathrooms every time - and we all know how much of a hassle trying to corral your luggage in and out of tiny ones can be
4. Talked with my dad on the phone after I realized I was at a stop some friends and I made 9 years ago on my first drive out to BYU. Talk about strange feeling. I couldn't have found that place again if I tried, but all of a sudden, there I was.
5. Kept getting hot air blowing in my face in the rental car even though the air was off. Rude.
6. Found a water park in my hotel. Too bad I got here after it closed and leave before it opens. The fitness center and I did have a good date.

Friday, November 14, 2008

It's All About Popular

Do you ever wonder what other people think of you? Scratch that, we have all wondered at some time or other.

What warrants "popular?"

What is it about me, or about anyone, that piques their interests enough to even want to talk with me at all, let alone be my friend? I've forged hundreds of lasting friendships throughout the years, but...what is it? How is it?

I like to leave a good taste in people's mouths (and not just with my cookies).
What, however, makes the difference between someone thinking you are kind, loved, loving, and socially acceptable, versus the person thinking you are conceited, overbearing, and "desperate?"

I'd like to say everyone thought of me as the former, but the sad truth is that I have been misunderstood a time or two. So how is it that to one person you are the coolest ever and another avoids you like Richard Simmons should avoid spandex?

Any thoughts?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Horror Movie

Friday was a dark and stormy night...

I had turned off all the lights and snuggled into the coziness of my down comforter. As I am about to drift off into what I can only imagine were dreams of blissful sugar plum fairies and little dancing ballerinas, "BEEP BEEP BEEP!!!" - A dear friend decided to hold a conversation with me via text. This particular friend cares for my kitty when I am out of town (aka, has a key), so I thought perhaps he had played a joke on me by moving something in my room from one side to the other, just to see if I would notice in my obscene neat-freakiness. I asked. Nope. Something little out of place, my first que of the events to play out over the next 30 minutes.

Those of you who know me know that I love all my friends no matter what time of the day or night and very quickly lose my magical texting thumb power and will initiate a real conversation soon enough, so, I pick up the phone and dial.

In the middle of a sentence I was abruptly cut off - not an unusual occurrence in my hillside condo. I look at my phone and try to reconnect - it keeps sending me the same disturbing message, "Cannot locate signal." Huh? I stretch my arm out into the dark abyss beyond my bed and towards the window..."Cannot locate signal."

Immediately, my childhood fears wrap their sticky little tentacles around my imagination.
What if there is an intruder in my house who found some newfangled way to block cell phone signals? These new invaders are one step up from the days of cutting the phone cord.
I next hear my door creak open. WHAT?!? Ok, wait, I have a kitty who opens doors - perhaps it was her. Something brushes against the side of my bed - a large something too big to be little Conor.
Like Michael Phelps, I lightning-paced swim through my covers to the center of my bed and proceed to cover my head. I look at my phone again, "Cannot locate signal."
What if someone is IN my room hovering over me right this second? The heater kicks on. The cat is opening more doors - I hope. I call for her - usually she is squeaking and purring loud enough for me to hear when she is getting into mischief. Nothing.
What if the bad guys got her? What if they broke her neck and tossed her over the balcony before they come to get me?
What if there are TWO bad guys and one is inside while the other waits outside in case I try to bolt?
I then imagine a scheme where one bad guy rings the doorbell whilst the other lurks inside, then they both pounce me as I go to the door.
I try to text a friend, "I'm really freaked out right now." No signal - but the light from the display catches the shadows of my room enough for me to realize I am alone for the time being. Whew!
WHAT?!?! Are you friggin' kidding me?
The bad guys must KNOW I'm a sucker and am going to answer that door before I take a leap from the window. Yes, I had already devised how to jump out and land in the softest locale two floors below. I had even decided which direction to run, screaming like a fire engine.
I eek towards the peep hole -would mean guy be peeping back? I hadn't even grabbed my batons for defense! I look. Ok, that is definitely a man out there. I look closer....that man appears to be a LOT like aforementioned friend.
I begin to fiddle with the lock. Late-night visitor turns his head towards the light for full disclosure.
I open the door and welcome my newest hero with a HUGE hug. "I am SO glad you came!"
He was rather baffled and amused.
I then told him allllllll about the thoughts that had been blazing through my mind and all of my elaborate schemes I had concocted in those brief terrifying moments under my comforter, which was definitely not doing its job of comforting.
He had, however, come over just to make sure everything was alright since the conversation cut out so suddenly and my phone never turned back on.
We had a good laugh, he did a thorough security breach check of my apartment, and we excused ourselves to the sanctity of our own beds.

Looks like I narrowly escaped being the next Halloween movie, "based on actual events." :-)

Friday, October 24, 2008


Though these best buds may be far apart (Utah/Ohio), they are still close in heart!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Chicago and Home

On yet ANOTHER work adventure, I ended up in Chicago, Illinois for a tradeshow. My parents live a mere 5.5 hours away, so they decided to come up and spend Saturday with me, take me to downtown Chicago, and to see the show Wicked.

We visited the Navy Pier where I had the best jalapeno cheddar pretzel of my life, rode a ferris wheel, and witnessed the beautiful Chicago skyline from the water's point of view. Barnelli's is the lucky locale we chose for lunching (the pizza shown is actually Giordano's - my dinner the next night).

Despite all their visits to the area, my parents had never ventured up the Sears Tower, so I talked them into it and up we went! I got the first of hours of horrible phone calls from work while I was up there, but the situation is all better now (they know it wasn't my doing) and I'd like to forget it ever happened (except the lessons I learned to keep it from happening again). Wicked was awesome, after I had recouperated from the several hours of crying and feeling like a worthless excuse for a human being. Hard to believe that just those couple of things took all day! Oh, we also passed on a square downtown a whole setup for an outdoor viewing of the movie Goonies - how cool is that?

The next part of my escapade took me to Mattoon. Would you believe that I got on facebook to brag to a friend I would be near his hometown when I saw on his very page that he and his wife/my friend were living in a town right along my way! So, I got to see another couple of friends (and their darling baby girl Clarissa) whom I haven't seen in 4 years! They took me all around Champaign and even took me to my favorite grocery store to get my favorite ice cream in the whole wide entire world - Meijer Peanut Butter Fudge.

After my hotel kicked me out...they actually just made me check out and allowed me to stay 2 hours later than I was supposed to...I had four hours to kill in the middle of nowhere. What's a girl to do?

I visited Gays, Illinois six miles away. Yes, that's right. The population sign as you enter says: Gays 300. Wait, it gets better. The local church is called "Gays Christian church." Wait, even better. The main tourist attraction in that booming town of 300 is a two-story outhouse built in 1857. Oh yes, I mean, seriously....does it get better than that?!?! I was also right next to an Amish country which I unfortunately didn't have time to visit.

I headed straight from my meeting in Mattoon to Cincinnati where my little sister currently abides. She just moved there about two weeks ago, so I felt super cool to get to spend the night (even though I didn't arrive until practically 2 am). We slept in then headed out to see my older sister, Shanda's, new baby girl Braelin.

No one in my family knew I was coming except for Brit! I am so sneaky!

Shanda didn't answer her phone, so we started to go in (Brit has a key). Shanda opened the door looking shaky and started forcefully telling Brit she just about got herself punched, then without even taking a breath she looked at me and said, "What are you doing here?!?!" She was excited - yeah!

I got to hold Braelin and talk with my sissy's for a couple of hours, then headed off to Mom's to surprise her. I walked into her front office holding a peach rose and she looks up for a couple seconds before her jaw dropped and I got another, "What are you doing here?!?" Success!

I called Dad to tell him I was "on my way home" (he thought in Utah) and he said he was on his way home from work - I had driven by his work and he wasn't there. So, I hid the Jeep Commander in the back field and went inside. I remembered at that point in time that my dad likes to...hmm...karate chop when he gets scared. As he was getting out of his car, I opened the door while holding some ice cream and yelled "I thought I should have some ice cream with you before I left!" I got yet a third, "What are you doing here?!?" Three for three!

Shanda brought Max and Braelin over a little later and we all sat and talked for a couple of hours as we ate our Cassano's pizza. I played in the field with the horses and kitties and Max for awhile too:-)
I went to bed and all-too-soon the new day began. Mom and I had some breakfast at Bob Evans, then it was off to work for her and off to the airport for me.

One day at home wasn't quite long enough, but it was a free trip, a GREAT sneaky surprise on my part, and I'll be back for the holidays for an entire week.

Now, I am back in SLC to my quiet, spacious apartment - just me and my little kitty. Oh - and Gold's Gym - I'm coming back to you tonight, baby!

Sunday, October 19, 2008


My latest work expedition (aside from the one I am on right now) took me to South Carolina, North Carolina, and New York City.
More importantly, said expedition took me to Suzanna Guffey Howard and her wonderful little family!!!

After a presentation and a lunch meeting in SC (which, I have to point out - there were bars on all the windows to all the stores in the middle of NOWHERE...what's gonna happen, the cow gonna come steal your granola? Seriously!) , I drove up to Zanna's for an afternoon and evening of fun, dinner, and ice cream. I love to smile and laugh in the company of someone so bright as Boozanna. I'm so lucky I have friends (of 10 years!) like my Piggy, Jenn, Kistopher, LeGaye (sp?), Zanna, who welcome me into their homes all over the country.
Is it mean of me to look forward to the day 50 years from now when all their hubbies die and we get to move to Miami, live in a big house with a lanai, and eat cheesecake at midnight?

After I left NC, I headed for JFK/NYC. I was greeted to New York with a fire alarm going off just as I was exiting the airport restroom. I panicked. Then I looked around...not a single person was even acting as if they heard what I heard. Lights were flashing, sirens blaring, yet the flight announcements carried on in the face of danger. One confused little pigeon shared my concern and somehow ended up walking along next to me towards the exit -eventually scaring the bejeebies out of me by flying into the door at my side as I was going through the open part. Poor guy - he's fine though, no worries.
I dropped my stuff off at my friend Jeff's and we went for lunch at the Shake Shack in Madison Square Park. Lemme tell you what - I'd definitely shake my shack for some of those burgers! Yum!

I walked around the rest of the afternoon, trying to hit the internal workings of Central Park since I seem to ever only just walk around the perimeter.
I chose "In the Heights" for my Broadway musical viewing enjoyment that evening.

After, I met up with my friend Ashley whom I met in NYC on our internships years ago and ended up being in my ward when I moved to my new place in May, who randomly happened to be arriving in the city that night. We got cookies and ESPN Zone. All ye who know me know of my weakness for the zone cookies.

My dearest KIII then hooked me up with her old roommates so I could watch an incredibly disturbing documentary on Ferret lovers and sleep for a whopping two hours. Darling Jeff walked me to the subway at 4am where I was promptly shocked with how many people are on that danged thing at that time of day! Immediately I lost my intense fear of what I thought was idiocy on the subway in the middle of the night.
I arrived back to SLC just in time to put church clothes on, lead choir practice, then come home and sleep for 6 hours. Whew!

Monday, October 13, 2008


The third thing was (refer to the last post for the first two): I got upgraded to a suite in the last hotel I stayed in - kitchen, living room, double-glass french doors into the bedroom, however, I only got to stay there for 5 hours.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Good Things

If bad things come in sets of three - as I was raised believing and blogged about once upon a time - does that mean good things do as well?
If so, I've got one coming...
1. I found $10 on the floor of Walmart - I'm rich!
2. My rental car is BRAND NEW! There were only 20 miles on it when I started driving.
3. ???? Any guesses/thoughts/ideas on what good thing number 3 will be?

Friday, October 3, 2008


I turned 28 this year on September 20 and had the most amazing birthday I can remember.

The celebration began Friday September 19 on my way home from a work meeting in Birmingham, Alabama. I had a layover in Denver for six hours, so my old roommates Heather (Piggy) and Jenn came to get me and take me to Jenn’s new home to spend time with them and their five (!) children for a few hours. I love these girls and it has been years since I’ve seen Piggy (only one since I last saw my redhead).

I returned home thinking I needed to run to the gym, then home to go out with a dear friend. I immediately knew someone had been in my house – things in the trash that I hadn’t put there, vacuum lines gone, empty milk jug, more toilet paper gone, cat toys moved, comforter fluffed – it was all odd. My friend then told me he had gotten a key from my sis in Ohio and hid something in the apartment on her behalf. He’s a good pal, so I thought he’d just made himself at home while there.

When he came over to take me out, he had me looking for whatever it was he had hidden when my doorbell rang. As he ran to get the door, I was hot on his heels and yelled, “Is it my sister?” I was totally joking, but when we opened the door, there was a HUGE box on the porch. A little tug, and out popped my sister from Ohio!

She, I, and B2 all had a girls night eating "The Pie" pizza, wearing face masks, eating Leatherby’s ice cream cake (not recommended – blagh), watching “Baby Mama,” and chatting. We dragged my queen sized, 24-inch tall air mattress into the living room and all three crashed. Conor even joined in on the slumber party madness. When we woke up Saturday morning, we just sat there and talked until about noon or so, when I went to the gym for my traditional 5-mile birthday run (under 49 minutes, thank you thank you)and their traditional salad buffet run.

Later in the day Michelle and Em came up, Kelly was over, Brit was there, and we just baked treats for the night-time party while chatting and having a grande ole time.

I had a combined birthday party with Julie-Ann and Jake in my ward – two very loved people –hosted by another very loved friend, Megan, and her roommates – shout out to Julie, Melissa, and Erin. I had lots of friends new and old come have fun with us.

The celebration will continue when I go to Chicago for work and my parents meet me there – they bought us all tickets to see “Wicked!” I’ve seen it twice before in NYC (original cast!), however, it is a cute show. They also bought me an amazing shiatsu massage chair (*singing* heaven, I’m in heaven…), which I have been forbidden to let anyone but myself use b/c I have had two get broken.

Perhaps all of these things don’t sound like a “best ever,” but the “best” part comes into play in that I felt so much love. All walks of my life collided on that weekend in a way they never have before. So many of my friends and family went, and are going, greatly out of their ways to let me know how much they care for me.

There is nothing like the feeling of being genuinely loved!!!


I've decided that Confidence is just about the sexiest and most attractive trait a man can have.
Strength - roar. That's all:-)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Black Cat - One, Paws - Six

I made a new friend in my complex today - a black cat with...abnormalities.

On the two front paws there were like...extra paws. I thought originally it was just a 6-toed cat, but it honestly appeared to have the beginnings of an extra paw on each side where the "thumb" would be. The back paws each had 6 toes.
Ironically, we met as Mutant was chilling on the power generator. If we meet again, I will definitely take a photo, but this time around the decrepit man in his eerily squawking walker scared little Mutant away.

If a black cat is supposed to be bad luck, then is a paranormal black cat even worse?
I have since learned from my dearest vet tech Andrea that Mutant is simply polydactyl. The 6 paws thing was way cooler.


If you have a bad temper, is it like being an alcoholic?
Once you are an alcoholic, you are always one, even if you haven't had a drink in ten years.
So, if you used to have a temper, but haven't had a tantrum in ten years, does that mean you still have a bad temper, you are just ten years sober?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

I think about you in the Summertime

For those of you who are totally not hip with the times - that subject is my homage to NKOTB! Is it just me, or has your former love for them turned into a little creeped-out-edness?
I thought I'd just post some photos for those of you who don't have Facebook and want to see what I've been up to. Some are old friends, some new...but all of it has been fun!

Bad things come in sets of three

My family has a superstition from way back in the day that bad things come in three's. At least this means my latest round of bad things is over.

1. I had to tell "Zuko" on Sunday that things are over forever and ever and I need him out of my life. I knew he wasn't the best for me, yet I felt this unexplainable magnetism towards him, I still do. He and I just connected, we felt that "click" if that makes any sense...I've only felt that twice in my life before. He kept emotionally holding me just close enough to keep me from progressing. He knew it, yet kept doing it unconsciously. How can you say goodbye to someone forever when they live across the street, go to your ward, go to all the same grocery stores, and go to all the same activities? I unfriended him on Facebook, which is, like huge. This is going to be a challenge.
How do I keep falling for guys who don't want me, yet can't let me go? I just want someone to really love me. Yes, you heard it here first, Larissa is done being single.

2. I also have a friend who is, hmm...larger than the average bear. He has done a very nice job of wearing in my new couch cushions so they are no longer stiff, but mushy and somewhat flattened. I sit on my 4-month old couch last night where he always sits and I hear a strange noise. I look under the couch to see that the couch is indeed broken. I know it is rude, but I had been fearing this. What do I do now? I will call the store and see if they'll repair it because it is under the normal wear and tear category, but it is white, so if they take it out of my place it'll come back all smudged up. That still, also, doesn't get me out of the awkwardness that will exist when I have to tell big bear to not sit on my furniture. Any suggestions? And what if they won't fix my couch?

3. I have to have at least $1,000 of repairs done to my car. They aren't things that will make the little '93 Honda Civic stop running now, but in a couple of years they would. I have a great friend who is willing to do all he can and I'll just pay him extra for labor, so I still come out at about half the price of the shop (blessing alert!). Why not get a new car? Eh, I'd rather just pay this amount once per year and have low insurance, than have to pay $250/month for a new car plus double the insurance. I'd also like to keep the car as a back-up when I finally get a new one, so I'd want to make these repairs anyway.

Friday, September 5, 2008

The View

I realized I never posted photos of my bachelorette pad. I love my place, although it is nothing elaborate - I'm surrounded by calmness and relaxation. Everything looks about half the size it really is in these photos, but you get the idea...