Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Changing of the guard.

Today is my last day at the newspaper, and therefore, my last day working with Caren.

I have added a co-worker as an author to this blog and he will carry the torch.

I'm confident that he will do justice to the spirit of the blog, continuing the tradition I have begun.

From time to time I'll post updates, some of Caren's "greatest hits," if you will.

Until then, fare thee well.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Commitment issues.

Caren has been having some problems with her new love interest, the dj.

"He said he doesn't want a commitment right now," Caren said, then asked, hopefully rhetorically, "What does that mean?"

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Danger. Produce.

Caren advised Dan that he should be careful while shopping for produce at the super market. She went on to explain that "poisonous snakes live in the produce" and a woman once died while her husband finished food shopping.


Today, with no prompting, Caren said, "I'm like 'The Mothman Prophecies.'"

When I asked her to explain what she meant, Caren said, "Speaking of which, I watched 'The Grudge' this weekend and Coco growled at the screen."

Monday, October 20, 2008

Casting call.

Caren received a Myspace message from a casting agency who think she is the perfect candidate for a new reality television show based around an arranged marriage. In all likelihood, the message was sent to millions of people across the country and around the world.

Caren thought enough of the spam message to write down the information and talk about it in the office... All day.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Something bad.

As reporters, part of our job entails assigning photographers to go to various events in local communities and take pictures.

Caren forgot to assign a photographer for an important event over the past weekend, and was worried about getting yelled at.

When our editor walked past her desk Caren was noticeably upset and when he asked her what was wrong, in true five-year-old fashion, she confessed, "...I did something bad."

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


Caren couldn't drive to her date the other day because she has "like ten I hate guys books" in her front seat.

One of the books is called "101 Lies Men Tell Women." It was a gift from her mother, who kind enough to tape one of her gray hairs into the inside cover.

Problems with modern technology.

Caren has not had a toaster in five years. After a mysterious fire while she was living in Boston, Caren claims to be "terrified" of toasters.

Monday, September 29, 2008

First date.

Caren and her phone friend had their first date this weekend.

They were both "too nervous to have a nice sit down dinner" so they went to White Castle, where they ordered 20 cheeseburgers and four orders of fries.

Caren said she had four burgers and there were a couple left in her fridge, meaning the phone friend had no less than 10 burgers on his first date with Caren.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Caren on Corzine.

Caren doesn't like New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine because "he makes everyone wear seat belts while can go tra-la-la and not wear one."

Monday, September 22, 2008

The big Hershey bars.

John Kerry was apparently Caren's neighbor in Boston and he gave out the big Hershey bars on Halloween.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Italian Wedding Soup.

On a particularly frustrating day, Caren decided to order Italian Wedding Soup from the restaurant next door.

I told her that it was the closest she would ever get to an Italian wedding.

I actually felt bad for a minute.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

What's that in my pasta?

I ate leftover pasta with tomato sauce for lunch today.

As I walked back to the kitchen to wash my tupperware, Caren asked me if I was done eating my "highly sodumized" lunch. Caren was attempting to explain that jarred pasta sauces are typically high in sodium.

I explained to Caren that "sodumizing" is illegal in some states.

She didn't get the joke.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Caren does not think Barack Obama is the anti-Christ.

I'm actually surprised by this one.

Phone friend.

Caren is somehow involved with a DJ at New York's popular dance station, 103.5 WKTU.

She calls him her "phone friend" because they met when she called to win concert tickets.

Caren could not elaborate further on the extent of their relationship.

He was supposed to accompany Caren as her date to a house party I had this weekend, but they were no-shows.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The End of the World.

Caren's mother heard from Bill O'Reilly that the world was going to end on Dec. 12, 2010.

She told a woman at the bank about it. The woman nodded her head in agreement, leading Caren to the conclusion that "it must be true."


"I don't have to make up stuff in my life to sound weird. It's just all weird naturally," -Caren.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Smoking bugs.

"When I see a bug bothering me I blow my smoke on it." -Caren.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Inside out.

This morning, I noticed Caren was wearing a different jacket than usual. It is blue with flowers on it and Caren bought it at Cracker Barrel. I also noticed that it was inside out.

I brought it to her attention, and she acknowledged that she wearing the jacket inside out.

This conversation took place at 9:30 a.m.

It is now 4 p.m. and she has yet to turn the jacket right-side out.

Try again later.

Today, Dan made a joke about Caren, to which she quickly responded by saying, "Why don't you make like a Magic 8-ball and try again later?"

The Wrath of the Caren.

"I stoned a jellyfish to its death." -Caren.


Caren has an AARP card.

AARP, which stands for American Association of Retired Persons, is a membership group for people 50 and over.

Caren is 30 years old.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Caren once ran out of shampoo and used Coco's dog shampoo.

Caren informed me today that she bought Coco a new, sour apple-flavored shampoo.

When asked if she used it on herself, Caren said, "I haven't tried it yet."

Feeding the geese.

Today, Caren explained that the geese at Rider University, where she attended college, enjoyed eating gobstoppers. They did not like bubble-gum, however.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Caren's diary.

Today, my co-workers and I were talking about something weird that Caren said, to which she responded "well that's ok, because I go home and record everything you guys say in my diary."

I asked Caren how she would like it if someone wrote down all of the stupid thing that she said for everyone to read.

She didn't respond.

Disaster Movie.

Caren thinks Disaster Movie "looks good."

The patio.

Caren's brother says that she has a "schizophrenic patio."

Over the wall.

Caren is filling in for a fellow reporter this week, who is on vacation. Because of this, Caren will spend the following five days sitting on the other side of the partition.

Life is good.

Food whore.

Caren has a bad grazing habit. She is a habitual snacker, who essentially never stops eating.

Today, when I asked her about the plethora of junk food on her desk, Caren explained that she is a "food whore."

I'm pretty sure she didn't mean to say that.


The groomer informed Caren that Coco has fleas.

I think it is safe to assume that Caren now also has fleas.

Friday, August 22, 2008

The jar of drugs.

Caren's parents used to keep a jar on the counter at their dry cleaning business.

In this jar, they would display the various bags of controlled dangerous substances and pieces of drug paraphernalia that they removed from the pockets of garments brought in by customers.

Eventually, a police officer told them that they could not keep the jar on display and it was confiscated.

Caren could not understand why.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The coffee ritual.

Every morning, Caren buys a cup of coffee on her way to work.

The coffee cup sits on her desk all day. To my knowledge, she has never drank more than half a cup, even though she buys a large.

At the end of the day, Caren microwaves her coffee cup, which is made of styrofoam, and takes it with her in the car for the ride home.

She never drinks the coffee in the car, and yesterday's coffee becomes today's ashtray.

Grooming day for Coco.

Caren's dog Coco has her first ever appointment with the groomer on Saturday.

As of this moment, Caren has shared this information with me eight times.

Don't you forget about me.

Caren once worked on a film as a production assistant and got in trouble for talking to Ally Sheedy.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A tale of two sweaters.

One day in July, Caren wore two sweaters and her aforementioned rag to work.

The first sweater was lime green. The second, a cardigan, was gray with a maroon flower design. The lavender fleece jacket completed the look.

The average temperature that day was in the mid to upper 80's.

Burger with cheese.

In the midst of ordering lunch from the restaurant next to our office one day, Caren became confused when the menu offered a hamburger and also offered customers the opportunity to add cheese to their hamburger.

Explaining to Caren that a hamburger with cheese and a cheeseburger are the same thing was probably the longest 20 minutes of my life.

Flowers for Algernon.

An ex-boyfriend sent Caren flowers at work today. I find it almost impossible that these flowers came without any type of suggestion or coercion. 

The card reads as follows:

"Caren, you were a good girl. If I'm a good boy, can I wake up next to you? -J.R."

Ragtime gal.

Caren's parents own a dry cleaning business, which makes Caren an expert on all things dry cleaning.

Caren uses one particularly odd form of shop talk when referring to her lavender fleece jacket. She calls it a "rag," which I am told is dry cleaning lingo for a jacket.

The term takes on a more literal translation when used by Caren to describe this particular jacket.

Caren wears her rag every day. Even in the summer. Caren wears her rag when it is 100 degrees out.

Caren also has a penchant for eating cheese doodles – the residual crumbs of which she constantly wipes on the shoulder of her rag.

Caren's rag is disgusting.


According to Caren's father, the word "cougar" is an acronym.

When asked, she wasn't able to identify what the acronym was, however, she did explain that the letter "u" stands for ugly.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Atlanta time zone.

Caren once asked me what time zone North Carolina was in.

It was ridiculous, yes, but this type of questioning is not entirely out of the ordinary for her.

The Caren moment came when she qualified it by saying, "because I know Atlanta has its own time zone."

Of course, Caren operates in a dimension where space and time cease to exist and all of the grounding principles of our universe are null and void. So I can see how time zones could be confusing.

Diamond in the Young.

Today, I discussed going to see Neil Young in concert with my friend and co-worker Dan.

When Caren overheard the conversation, she said that she wanted to go.

"You don't even know who Neil Young is," I told her.

My assertion was proven correct when Caren said, "sure I do" and immediately launched into a mind blowing version of Neil Diamond's "Coming to America."

Inaugural post.

Hello and welcome to "I work with Caren."

This is a blog where I will share my thoughts on the sometimes hysterical, often frustrating and consistently dumbfounding experience that is working with Caren.

A little about myself: My name is Tom. I'm a 23-year-old journalist working for a weekly newspaper in New Jersey. I've been working at the desk in front of Caren since November.

A little about Caren: Caren is a 30-year-old journalist and editorial assistant at the paper. She has an ex-boyfriend named J Rock and a dog named Coco. Caren is a very loud chewer.