from my state – literally and figuratively – and other places. i'm not in florida any more, but i haven't given up the sunshine.


brief hiatus

happy tuesday.

sunshine and beyond is taking the week off. i hope all (two) of you will come back next week.

and: happy birthday to my favorite boy in chicago.


good eats

well, i'm not cool enough to be part of the photo friday pool, but this i couldn't resist.

friends invited me to dinner the other night. it was spectacular -- a delicious four - wait five! - course meal served on china.

fancy has never been so comfortable.


shortest political quiz

this is fun ... where do you stand on the political spectrum?

results say i'm a centrist. hm.
CENTRISTS espouse a "middle ground" regarding government control of the economy and personal behavior. Depending on the issue, they sometimes favor government intervention and sometimes support individual freedom of choice. Centrists pride themselves on keeping an open mind, tend to oppose "political extremes," and emphasize what they describe as "practical" solutions to problems.

via my favorite boy in chicago.


a woman first

from npr to cnn, every report of the recent allegations against duke’s lacrosse team describes them as “charges of raping and kidnapping a stripper.”

giving the media the benefit of the doubt, this may be a simple case of following the journalistic rule of the inverted pyramid, and an effort to cram as much information into as few words as possible for an opening graph. unfortunately, in the process this person’s entire identity has been relegated to “stripper”. it’s a word that, for most, invokes opinions about character, particularly when it comes to consensual sex. and it pits her against a more pristine image of the academic elite.

i do not subscribe to language theories that go so far as to seek to alter words like ‘history’ to ‘herstory’. but some care should be taken with semantics, particularly when something as serious as rape charges are at stake. one should not automatically assume the lacrosse team is guilty. at the same time, responsibility must be taken to not discredit the accusations by ignoring the simple fact that the accuser is, above all else, a person… a woman.


playing with the boys

last week i found myself on a stage with the company ceo, a couple of other execs, a mayor, and a u.s. congressperson. the industry in which i work is traditionally very “boys’ club”. and, i was the only female among this group, as we sat in front of a small audience (200 or so) in a very southern state.

i was on stage with these gentleman, because some (male) co-workers decided that making a 30-year-old female the mc would not only add a smidgen of diversity, but would also make a small statement about where the company is headed.

i find it incredibly unfortunate that there weren’t more girls at the front of the room. but, i take pride in working with people who see the importance of not only making the company and it’s policies more egalitarian, but also understand the impressions that can be made in small, deliberate doses.


canine factory

there are some things i like not knowing. there are so many disturbing acts in the world that, as much as i dislike apathy, i know i have this determined ignorance about certain issues. so here’s the latest bubble buster– people really think it’s okay to manufacture dogs?

unless otherwise specified, dogs sold at a pet store probably come from a commercial breeding facility. puppy mills overuse (abuse) breeders canines and “house dogs in overcrowded and often unsanitary conditions, without adequate veterinary care, food, water and socialization.” and often, customers go home with a very sick pet.

there are plenty of puppies without a home available at places like the humane society… and if you have you’re mind set on a pure-bred pup, there are responsible breeders.


frappr friday

because i'm not embarrassed to admit that i like a little attention ... i'm jumping on the amy and trista frappr bandwagon.

even if you never comment, why not at least let us know you're around. "they" already know anyway.


you can't retell this*

you can't retell this
you can't retell this,
originally uploaded by sunshineandbeyond.
dinner in ybor city saturday night was undoubtedly one of the funniest experiences ever. everything was in slow motion. and the food was, well … interesting. (see photo notes) unfortunately, not shown here is the sludge they passed off on kendra as stew.

*original statement by michelle.