Friday, December 25, 2009

Joyeaux Noel

Happy Winter Holiday!

The chaos is, for me and mine anyway, over for another year. We did our usually Christmas thing (for the most part) and it was actually really nice. The weeks leading up to x-mas, including finals, were very stressful and crazy but the last few days have been really nice and relaxed.

After I finally finished finals I rushed to get my x-mas shopping done. As you could probably tell from my last post, that kind of shopping is not my favorite activity in the world. When that was done though, my stress level went from super high to pretty low.

Now the presents are unwrapped, the food has been eaten and Christmas is over for another year. I don't think I've really enjoyed the holiday this much in a long time. I hope it was nice for everyone else too.

I have a couple big end of the year/decade posts planned. Hopefully I'll get those up in the next couple days.

Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Ten Horrible Things

I would rather be doing today than Christmas shopping:
1. Listening to country music
2. Getting my wisdom teeth out again
3. Watching all of Adam Sandler's movies
4. Sitting in rush hour traffic
5. Hanging out in a small room full of smokers
6. Debating the literary merits of Twilight
7. Eating raw lemons
8. Dusting a ceiling fan
9. Getting a pap smear
10. Fighting mutant alligators with a pogo stick

Thursday, December 03, 2009

End of Things

I have one week left of school. Life is crazy. Finals may kill me. Blogging is going way on the back burner until it's all over. See you in a week or so!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanks

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Seattle Day Two

Sunday in Seattle started out a little slow. I slept in and when I woke, we had a leisurely breakfast provided by the hotel. Sometime Saturday it occurred to me that the Archie McPhee store was in Seattle and I convinced Dad that we needed to go there. So that's where we headed after breakfast.

I'm not sure most of my readers will understand how freeking awesome this store is. Dave will, but I already geeked out about it to him (read: I gloated that I there). Spend some time on their website though. Now, imagine the store... it has all that stuff plus a bunch of bins of random.

Also, there is bacon:











After Archie McPhee we went to The Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum. It's actually two different museums... sort of. They're in the same building, and you just get one ticket for both of them, but they're very separate. The music doesn't really have anything to do with the science fiction. Anyway, that was kind of interesting. the music part had a lot of stuff about the music scene in Seattle, which was interesting. It also had a hall of guitars which showed the evolution of the guitar. The sci-fi museum just had tons of stuff - from books to props in movies to models and Ninja Turtles.


Finally after the museum we headed to Quest Field for the Major League Soccer Cup Game - the whole reason we went to Seattle in the first place. Our little local soccer team - Real Salt Lake - somehow managed rally and make it to this game. RSL was playing LA Galaxy (David Beckham's team). It was such a good game!

If you don't follow soccer, you wont really care if I tell you all about it. If you do follow soccer, you probably watched the game and you know how kick ass it was. All I will say is Real won in sudden death PKs. It was totally intense.

After the game we headed out. We drove all night and arrived back home around noon. It was a really fantastic trip, but I was completely exhausted yesterday and today. And I'm having a hard time keeping straight what day of the week it is.

Here are a couple more pictures for you:

Me at the stadium before the game
proof that we were there

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Seattle Day One

Trip to Seattle = Super freeking awesome! Here's what happened:

We left Friday around 2:00 and, with one hour long delay to check out a weird warning light, drove for the next 12 hours. Dad and I alternated who was driving and who slept. We finally pulled into Seattle around 3 in the morning, pulled into a random parking lot, and we both slept for about 4 hours. The car was not the most comfortable place for sleeping, but we managed.

Around 7 we went to breakfast, and visited out hotel. We couldn't check in until 3, but we got a parking permit so we left the car in their lot and walked down to the water front.

We started at Pike's market- you know, the famous one where they throw the fish around. I kind of failed at taking a picture of the fish flying through the air... but here it's about to happen:

really, anticipation is half the fun, right? Anyway, we walked around the market for a while - there were all sorts o
f little shops and fun things to look at. Then we walked along the water front a little more. We spent a lot of time in odd little touristy shops. At one point we past a little food vendor and decidedthat we really should get some fried clams while we were there. I mean, come on, it's not going to get any fresher than that.
they were delicious!

After chowing down our clams, we wandered up to Pioneer Square to take The Underground Tour. Seattle's streets were originally 8-35 feet lower than they are now. The underground tour takes you down to the original side walks to take a look at historic Seattle streets while the tour guides tell funny stories - mostly about shit and prostitution.
See, when Seattle started out people didn't really understand how tides worked. And they, just like we do now, occasionally had to go to the bathroom. These two factors meant that every day at high tide, downtown Seattle was flooded with salt water and raw sewage. The invention of the Crapper (flush toilet) made things even more fun. When everyone got their crappers, they needed a sewer system to hook them up to. So they built one, out of wood, that worked with gravity. That was fine, except at high tide water would flow back up the sewage pipe, pressure would build up and you can guess what would happen when you tried to flush you crapper.

One day Seattle burned down. All of it. It was a great time to start over and solve problems. City guys said "let's raise everything so it wont get flooded every day." Business guys said "I'm not going to pay for it." So the businesses re-built their shops pretty much the way the were before. The City guys raised all the land they owned... city land... so basically the streets. The streets were now 8-35 feet above the sidewalks. Having customers fall down onto the sidewalk, and having to climb up and down ladders to patronize your shop is kind of bad for business. So business owners raised their sidewalks and all the first floors became basements.

This is a picture of a skylight at a corner of the underground sidewalk. Up on the street it just
looks like decorative mosaic tile in the sidewalk. The original skylights were thick, solid pieces of transparent glass. This caused two major problems. 1 - fat people (or people carrying big loads) would walk over the skylight and fall through. 2 - they were transparent. Crowds would gather beneath them to... um... enjoy the views. Local "seamstresses" found them to be a great way to advertise their wares though. The gentlemen below got a sneak preview of what they were offering. They just wrote their prices on the bottom of their shoes.

After the tour, we wandered back to the hotel to check in. As soon as we got to the room, we both kind of crashed - although Dad only napped for about 15 minutes. He believes in the power napping thing. I slept for a good solid 2 hours. Between driving all night and walking around all day, I was pretty damn tired.

We went to dinner at a local pub, and then I went dancing. Seattle has some great dancers, so I thought I should check them out. Funny enough, I actually knew two of the guys there. One was a kid I met at Lindy on the Rocks this summer. The other guy I met last year at the Utah Lindy Exchange. He was just in town for the game too. I guess Disney is right, it is a small world after all.

I have stuff I have to take care of. I'll finish writing about the trip later today, or possibly tomorrow.

Friday, November 20, 2009

This is Just To Say

I'm going to Seattle this weekend for the MLS Cup game. (w00t)

I don't know what the WiFi situation is going to be, but I probably wont be blogging until I get back.

Now I have to go finish packing.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

And Another Thing...

I was going to write about shoes today. I can see you rolling your eyes at me, but it was going to be pretty cool. But then I logged into blogger and it told me that Tim had blogged about the new Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy book.

My first thought was: What? Douglas Adams is dead. There's a new Hitchhiker's book? WTF? Why did I not know about this?

My second thought was: I'm going to read Tim's blog.

My third thought (after reading the blog): Dude, I'm putting it on hold right now!

My fourth thought (after going to the library website and putting it on hold): Awww man, 24. That's not nearly as cool. Tim was number 42 in line. I want to be 42. Everyone should automatically be 42 in line for the book, no matter how many people have holds on it already. *sigh* Oh well, at least I'll get it faster this way.

My fifth thought: Hmmm I wonder if I have anything due soon... nope. Good.

My sixth thought: I'm so not going to blog about shoes anymore. Even though it was going to be an awesome post about shoes.

And that pretty much catches you up.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Evolution and Books

Book people are really reticent to change. The books we read today are REALLY similar to the books that have been around hundreds of years. Ever since people switched from the papyrus scroll to the codex books have looked pretty much the same.

Sure, the shape change a little from square to more rectangular, and the material used to make pages has changed too. Printing technology influenced the look of the writing on the page (illuminated lettering is soooo 14th century). But since about the 4th century people have filled their libraries with these stacks of pages, bound on one side, with stuff written on them.

For a long time book pages were animal skins. The easiest shape to get out of an animal skin is a rectangle. That's why books are shaped the way they are. When paper became the popular material for the page it stayed rectangular because people still wanted their books to look like books. Book people are very reticent to change.

Now we have e-books and e-book readers like the Kindle. The high-tech, computerized, electronic way of doing pretty much everything is catching up to the book world. Book people are reacting pretty much the same way they always have: The Kindle is neat, but in my library, I want the real thing.

I have mixed feelings about this new evolution of the book. I haven't had a lot of experience with e-book readers (but I have tried a few). What I have seen has been pretty cool. I would love to be able to just download all my text books and not have to lug 3 tons of bookage to school every day. When I travel, I always pack at least 4 or 5 books. That can get heavy, and with airline baggage restrictions it can be a problem. With e-books, I could just pack one slim little reader and have my entire library at my fingertips. You never have to worry about setting your book down and loosing your page. You can take notes, and search for terms - navigation is much simpler than frantically flipping through pages.

On the other hand, you lose most of the tactile experience of reading when you use e-books. There's something special about actually turning the page (or being able to flip a head and see how much you have left in a chapter). The feel of paper under your fingers, the book smell, the smudges and wrinkles on the paper from various reading adventures are all part of the reading experience. Plus it's nice to have a bookshelf with a display of stuff you read. It's a great thing to peruse at someone's house. It's an insight into their personality.

I could go back and forth about the benefits of both formats, but I wont. I think change is probably inevitable. Like any change, it will take a while for e-books to be really wide-spread. As for me, I'll embrace the codex, but my library is still going to be full of scrolls.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Naked Music

I had this song stuck in my head today:I Like You So Much Better When You're Naked by Ida Maria.

A few minutes ago, it occurred to me that it would be awesome if I made a CD (or a playlist, 'cause who really listens to CDs anymore?) of awesome songs that are about Naked.

I could think of three (including the one above) right off the top of my head. These are the other two:

Take Off Your Clothes by Morningwood
Buck Nekkid by ZZ Top

After asking Google and thinking about it a little more I came up with a few more:

Underneath Your Clothes by Shakira
You Can Leave Your Hat On by Joe Cocker... or Tom Jones because Tom Jones = class
Naked by the Spice Girls

And that's pretty much all I could come up with. If you can think of anything that should be added to the list, you should probably share.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

This and That

I think we can safely say that blogging on weekends isn't working out so well for me. Maybe. I guess I did post last weekend, didn't I? Whatever. I don't really have anything to say right now, but I figured... you know... NaBloPoMo and all. I'm not sure I should have tried to do that.

Something kind of fun: our local soccer team is playing in the MLS cup. Next weekend I'm going to drive up to Seattle with my dad to see the game. Should be kind of fun.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Magical Me

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A Fort of One's Own

I was listening to NPR on my way home from class today. The author Julia Keller was on talking about her book Back Home. The book may be interesting; I will probably never read it. I honestly wasn't paying very close attention except for one point when Keller read part of the book:

"Everybody needs a fort."

She went on to explicate; a fort is someplace we can go when we need to feel safe. When we're little, it is usual literal. It could be a fort or tree-house built in the backyard, or a tent set up in the living room. As we grow up we have tools that create a sort of metaphorical fort. We have our knowledge, our books, our experience, and these things make us feel safe in times of crisis.

This excerpt made me think of A Room of One's Own by Virginia Woolf. It's been a long time since I read that. If I recall correctly, she is basically saying that in order for a woman to write, she has to have her own space in which to do it. A room of her own - a place that is only hers where she can create under only her own influence. (I could be totally off. It's been years, and I may not have been completely paying attention when I read it)

I think these two concepts are very closely related, and I think everybody needs both. Or I do at least. For me, they're kind of the same thing. I always need to have someplace that is just mine; a place that is my sanctuary. In my old apartment and in my parent's house now (and when I was growing up), that place is my bedroom. It's my sacred ground. Here is where I am when I need to escape the world.

When I was living in the dorms and had a roommate, I didn't really have my own space. There were several places around campus, though, where I would go to write or to simply be alone. In that case my fort or my room was more metaphorical, but the feeling I got when I visited those places is the same one I get when I retreat to my room now.

I wonder if this will change when I fall in love and get married. If I'm cohabitating, can I still have a room of my own? It can't be the bedroom. Do I have the right to insist on my own room? Actually, my dream house has a little cottage or shed in the backyard that I will make my "studio." That may be taking it a bit far.

I imagine that when I find myself settled, my room will be the library (yes, any house I live in long term will absolutely have a library. It will have lots of bookshelves, a very comfy chair, possibly a desk, and at least one grand window). This room probably won't really be sacred ground - I would never be able to deny my partner the joy of books. But it would be a place for me to go and escape when I need to. It would be my fort.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Grumble.

People keep calling me "Ma'm."

That never used to happen.

I guess most gals my age (especially here in UT) are already married and have kids. Thus they qualify for ma'm status.

I don't like being called "Ma'm"

Monday, November 09, 2009

The Zed Word

If zombies attack, I'm pretty much screwed. Seriously, the three places where I spend the most time (school, work, home) are pretty much terrible places to be in a zombie apocalypse.

School is probably the worst. On a college campus there are lots of students, in other words, lots of potential zombies. Plus in any classroom there's pretty much one entrance/exit and nothing that would make a suitable weapon. If I could get out of the classroom and then out of the building, then what? I'd most likely be in the middle of campus. I don't drive to school, so I would be pretty much stuck there, unless I could find someone with a car who wasn't zombified.

My house is not very fortified. The doors would probably hold for a little while, but we have a huge window that would be a perfect entry point for a shit-ton of undead. I could probably barricade myself in the basement, but zombies could still get through the back door pretty easily. And if I'm stuck downstairs I'm pretty limited on my weapon choices and food (assuming they can't get through the back door and I have to wait them out) - we have a pantry downstairs, but there's not really a lot of food in it.

Work is probably the best of the three. No matter what library I'm at, I'm still at a library. That means there are lots of people around. There are usually several ways to get out (and in, unfortunately) so I could possibly escape out the staff door and maybe make it to my car. I would have a hard time finding weapons, but there are plenty of book-carts and other obstacles that could slow the pursuit.

Yes, I have gotten in the habit of scoping out any setting I find myself in and thinking to myself "What would I do if zombie burst in right now and started chewing on people." It's silly, I know. But it never hurts to be prepared. Not that it will really do me much good - if I survive zombies it will be due to sheer luck.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Lonesome Whipperwill

Ok. I know yesterday's post was a bit of a cop out. And I didn't post on Thursday. NaBloPoMo may be kicking my ass a little bit.

Today I don't really have anything particular in mind that I would like to talk about, but I promise not to just post a comic. Even if it's a really funny comic. But what, then, shall I write about? Life? The Universe? Everything? It would be pretty hard to write about Everything... it's a rather big topic. What about some other abstraction? Love? Hate? Happiness? Loneliness?

In my poetry writing class (the one I don't like much) we just read a book called Don't Let Me Be Lonely by Claudia Rankine. In this particular piece of literature the loneliness (because Lonely was in the title, so loneliness must come into it somewhere) stemmed from a sort of detatchment from life. The speaker of the poems was often unable to really connect, to fully experience the life she was living. Whether it was from media overload or life-hazing anti-depressant medications.

I've heard from a few friends (ironically all the one's who've told me this were male) that they are tired of being lonely. These guys have been single for a while. They have plenty of friends, but they want a romantic relationship with someone. They will be lonely until that happens.

Is it a social construct, or is it a biological imperative, that we need to be with someone in a committed, romantic, relationship sort of way? When does our quality of life start to be defined by our being (or not) in a relationship?

I think it's silly. I like being single. Plus, I think it's important to be happy with yourself, by yourself before you try being with someone else.

Those are just my rambling thoughts of the day.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Silliness


Ever wondered why your mom always told not to run with scissors?

The world of webcomics has the answer!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Criminal Trespass

This is pretty much why I often get frustrated with my dear home state of Utah. The church politics are so often completely absurd. The hypocrisy an intolerance that comes out of my state's dominant religion is incredible. It's so ridiculous that you just have to laugh about it.

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Nailed 'Em - Mormon Church Trespassing
www.colbertnation.com
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical HumorU.S. Speedskating


I am in no way saying that all mormons are hypocritical idiots. Most of them, actually, are absolutely not. It's just "The Church" - the masses of people who run this state with a strong bias toward their personal faith. Individually I'm sure most of these people are fine. I bet most of them are actually able to think logically occasionally too. But the shenanigans that The Curch gets up to in this town are nuts!

And then people here complain about Utah Mormons have a bad reputation for being back-woods, idiot, ultra-conservative, morons. There is a reason for that.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

T-Mobile Fail

I logged on to twitter today for the first time in at least a month. Why? To see all the complaints people were tweeting about T-Mobile, and to add my two cents. It was the same two cents everyone else was adding; T-Mobile sucks.

If you haven't heard already T-Mobile users are suffering from a global outage today. People aren't able to get phone calls and/or use text messaging. Most of the day today I have been able to call people, but apparently no one was able to call me. Text messaging hasn't worked for me at all.

I can get phone calls now, but that's just been in the last 30 min or so.

T-Mobile's official statement is this:

T-Mobile customers may be experiencing service disruptions impacting voice and data. Our rapid response teams have been mobilized to restore service as quickly as possible. We will provide updates as more information is available

Nice and ambiguous. Thanks, T-Mobile. I feel like you're really on the ball.

I have been kind of frustrated with T-Mobile lately anyway. I don't think they have very good customer service and their website is the opposite of user-friendly. I think it's time to get someone else. I still have another year left on my contract. I'll have to look into how much it will cost me to get out of it early. Right now I'm thinking that whatever the cost, it might be worth it.

Oh wait! I just got a text message. Good. I still am done with T-mobile.

Monday, November 02, 2009

What To Read

If you were going to be exiled to a deserted island and you were allowed to bring 10 books with you, what would they be?

I say deserted and not desert because I like you and I want you to live. But the scenario I'm presenting necessitates solitariness. What books would you want to keep you company? What books could you stand reading over and over again? you're going to be stuck on this island for a while.

For the sake of making it a little harder, I'm going to say that "Complete Works of..." don't count. That's cheating. Ditto anthologies and multi-book volumes (i.e. The Ultimate Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, which is actually several books). If you want a whole series that might be available as one volume, you may count each book separately. Short story or play collections are ok... but still no "complete works" of any playwright.

This is my list (in no particular order):

Photobucket Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett

Photobucket Sailing Alone Around the Room by Billy Collins (my favorite volume of poetry ever)

Photobucket War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy (I haven't actually read it, but if I were stranded, I'd certainly find the time. Plus someone once told me it was good beach reading)

Photobucket Divisadero by Michael Ondaatje

Photobucket Collected Shorter Plays of Samuel Beckett (this is ok under my parameters because it's a collection of short, one-act (for the most part) plays; it's like a collection of short stories)

Photobucket 95 Poems by e e cummings

Photobucket Existentialism and Human Emotions by Jean-Paul Sartre (I'm apparently trying to have an existential crisis on my island. But it's so interesting)

Photobucket Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

Photobucket The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (This is my "light reading" choice... it's a WWII story narrated by Death. I may have issues)

Photobucket The Tao Te Ching by Lao Tsu

Well, now that I've made that list I'm a little surprised by how not uplifting it is. I'm not going to change any of my choices though. They may be kind of bleak and ponderous, but there are very good reasons I chose each of those books. The writing in each and every one of them is stunningly beautiful. Most of them also really present something worth thinking about. Plus, they're not all entirely humorless. Collins and cummings both can be quite funny, and Beckett's plays are full of (albeit dark) humor.

Now it's your turn, dear readers. What would your 10 desert island books be? Post them in the comments, or on your own blog thingy.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

wo bo slo mo no do sho so wo o*

Well, kids, it's officially November. Halloween, or as I like to call it Super-Awesome-Best-Freeking-Holiday-Ever, is over and we're falling headlong into Christmas season. What happened to Thanksgiving? you ask. I'm afraid I can't say. You'll have to ask the retail universe- they've had Christmas stuff out for weeks already.

I think it's rather absurd myself, but there's not much I can do about it.

Besides the whole holiday thing, something else very special happens in November. This month, people sitting at computers everywhere feed excessive amounts of nonsense to the interwebs. That's right, November is a time for bloggers everywhere to blog. Not just regular, boring, popping into the blogger ballroom for a quick reel once every week or so, oh no, now is the time to post every single day! The internet will be overflowing with useless information and inanities (it's not already? Shhh, don't tell. November is special, dammit!). Since I don't really care to be part of the solution, I am going to be part of the problem!

That's right, as I mentioned a few posts ago, I'm going to try to do NaBloPoMo (NAtional BLOg POsting MOnth) again. So I am going to post every day in November. Aren't you excited? The strange and mundane things in my life are going to make their way into my computer and then out again, through your eyeballs, and into your head. Tune in daily for exciting new installments!

I will say right now that Dad and I are planning on our annual camping trip Thanksgiving weekend, so I wont post those days. It's hard to do internets when you're in the middle of the desert with no electricity/cell reception/wifi. Besides those 2-3 days though I intend to blog every single day. It's going to be challenging, especially since I've really gotten out of the habit of blogging.


* Translation according to Tim: These rhinos are all well and good but I want me some metal dogs.

Friday, October 30, 2009

All The Single Ladies

This brings me much joy:




Click on the picture. It takes you to a special place.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Conditional Poetics

I know I have sometimes said that people who post their poems on the internet really bother me. Usually that poetry is not very good and the poet posts it explicitly to gather praise from the internets. What I'm about to do pains me ever so slightly, and may be laden with hypocrisy. I am going to share with you, dear readers, one of my poems.

It's still pretty rough, this is about the third draft. I will not claim that it is any good (I like it a lot, but I'm far from impartial, and it's really fresh, so I'm even less impartial than I might be about another poem). The reason I'm posting it now is because I think it really needs a good title, and I can't think of one.

My dad suggested "Bread Pudding" because the 1970's pop band Bread came out with a (really terrible) song called "If" and the poem is like a pudding, especially bread pudding, because it is melange of material. He also suggested "Blue Universe... O" or something like that.

I've considered calling it something like "Empirical Condition" or "49 Conditions" or something like that. The poem is made of a series of half conditional statements so... that's where I got those titles. I don't like them much though.

Anyway, here is the poem:

if the poetry of science can be found in the stars
if the universe is, at its core, blue
if blue is nothing more than a wave-length
if the stars vibrate with cries of O
if silence (not sound) is the foundation of (English) language
if poetry has the power to teach the erring man
if I whisper secrets into blue clay mugs
if blue becomes onomatopoeic
if the prefix “demi” means one half
if poetry can be empirically dissected
if all possible scientific questions can be answered
if poetry is an experience of imminent revelation
if the (English) language can be picked apart and stripped to essence
if the scar exactly bisects my back
if I change the details (you) to improve the story (us)
if it is possible to write blue poetry
if there are some (many) questions science can’t answer
if we don’t speak over tea
if scar tissue is blue
if scars can be empirically dissected
if I use the blue clay mugs for tea
if poetry and science are at odds with each other
if O is a scar on the (English) language
if the prefix “hemi” means one half
if rocks can resist the sky
if poetry and science cannot be separated
if blue has the power to teach the erring man
if stars are rocks that didn’t resist
if we (I) must obey the (English) language
if blue is a rock on the surface of the universe
if the (English) language once meant something else entirely
if the rock and the sky are each half
if O hangs, silent, in the air between us
if blue always points south
if I write everything down and hide it
if the prefix “semi” means one half
if the story (us) is deeply scarred
if love can be empirically dissected
if paper beats rock
if it becomes possible for the writer to have, like Picasso, a blue period
if O is set aside for later
if one is rock and the other is sky
if the stars are made of blue clay
if every scar clutches a story
if Carolina, Cobalt, Sky, Steel and Midnight are all shades of blue
if O falls off the edge of the universe
if the (English) language can be sculpted in blue clay
if science has the power to teach the erring man
if we (I) throw implication to the wind and use only “if” but never “then”


Please post any ideas you have for a title (or anything else you want to say about the poem) in the comments. Or us whatever other means you have to communicate with me.

Thanks for your help, cyberfriends!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Helter Skelter

Hi Bloggophites! Did you miss me? I sure missed you.

I don't actually have anything particularly in mind to write about today, but I am taking a break from homework to blog anyway.

I guess because I haven't written in so long, I should really have a lot to say. Shall I tell you about my classes? Ok.

I am finally back in school full time. I moved back in with my parents back in July (not the most awesome thing I've ever done, but it's not really bad) for monetary reasons. Plus, if I don't have to worry about paying rent, I have time to focus on academics. I really just want to get school over and done with at this point. So I'm trying to focus - now that the semester is half-way over I'm kind of getting into the swing of things. I'm taking 4 classes, which doesn't seem like a lot, but their all upper-level and the work load is not insignificant.

My favorite (and hardest) class is a Critical Literary Theory course. The professor is fantastic. The reading is nearly impossible to understand, but once I do get it, it's fascinating. In a few weeks we are applying all the crap we've read (and presumably understood) to such things as Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Battlestar Galactica. If that doesn't make an awesome class, I don't know what does.

I'm also taking another generic English class (Literary History blah blah blah). It's not bad. Not great.

I'm taking Communication and Gender because I thought it looked interesting and wanted to take something that was strictly English. It's an interesting class. I've discovered that Communications is sort of English Lite, so that class is fairly easy. Any of the writing we have to do I can pretty much handle with my eyes closed. The topic is really interesting though, and the discussions we have in class are quite stimulating.

Finally, I taking a Poetry Writing class. This is the great disappointment of my semester. I love writing, as those who know me or have been reading this blog for a while know. I expected this to be my favorite class of the semester. I wanted (and expected) it to be inspiring, to open new levels of creativity and intrigue in my poetry and the way I write in general. As it turns out, the class it strongly mediocre, bordering on blasé. I'm not sure the teacher (who is a grad student, not a professor) had any real sort of plan for the class. Everything seems sort of unorganized and incongruous. Plus she's kind of dippy and has a penchant for wearing mis-matched, neon fabrics plucked right out of the 70s. Tragically, the class has not only NOT inspired me to write much of anything at all, it's almost turning me against poetry. I say almost because there's probably not a force on earth that could really make me stop writing completely. Still, this class is disheartening and uninspiring.

I should really get back to my serious reading for class now. Good talk, bloggates. I'll try to visit you more often. I think I'll try NaBloPoMo again in November. I didn't much like doing it last year because I felt like the quality of my posts declined pretty drastically. This year, though, I don't think they could really be much worse. I might add in the additional goal of posting something of quality every day. If nothing else, maybe it will get me into the habit of blogging more often again. I really love this silly little project, and I hate to think I'm coming close to abandoning it.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Just Testin' Ya

It's midterm season. This is how I feel about it:



























That is all.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Out, Out Brief Candle

My father's best friend killed himself last night. It was very unexpected, but somehow not very surprising. He had pretty progressive multiple sclerosis and... he was just in really bad shape. In his note he said that he had the right to decide when he died. My dad was probably the last person to see him - he went over last night to watch the football game with him.

The thing is, I completely understand why he did it. With a such a degenerative, incurable disease, there's not much else you can do. When you can no longer control your body, what else can you control? Given a choice of slowly and painfully wasting away to nothing or dying quickly on your own terms, what would you choose? At what point does suicide become the best cure?

This dilemma is one that I have given a good deal of thought. There's a good chance with my Wegener's Granulomatosis I could end up in a similar situation. It's not nearly as bad as MS - there are pretty effective ways to control it and I responded well to the treatments. It's also possible that I will never have a relapse and I will go on living a healthy, normal life. But what if I do have a relapse? What if next time it's much worse and I don't respond to treatment? If my lungs collapse and my kidneys shut down, if WG slowly eats away at my body... at some point quality of life is so low that it's easier on everyone to simply end things.

I'm not saying that I want to kill myself, not by a long shot. But if I've become a burden to those who love me (and I'm not saying my Dad's friend was, but... he was. They were glad to bear that burden, but still), if I can no longer do anything that I like to do, if I am slowly wasting away and the only thing I can still control about my life is how it ends....

I guess my point is that I can really understand why he did it. That actually scares me a little.

My mom is making paella for his widow (oh, wow, she's a Widow... somehow that's harder to wrap my mind around than anything else I've written today). Why does our society meet tragedy with food?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Hilarible

Hilarible is a term coined by my friend, Spydr. Yes, that is her name... Well, not the one on her birth certificate, but that's what everyone calls her. Hilarible is, in case you couldn't figure it out, a combination of Hilarious and Terrible. I heard a story today that illustrates this principle perfectly:

This guy, we'll call him John (I don't even know his real name... he's a friend of a co-worker's son), asked a girl out, we'll call her Julie. John decides to take Julie to the State Fair for their first date. John and Julie both live in Provo, which is about an hour long drive from the fair grounds in Salt Lake. While John is driving to Salt Lake, his stomach starts to hurt; he's getting gassy. He holds it in because he's in the car this hot girl, and you just don't want to murder your date with noxious butt-fumes. But the pressure is building up to the point that it's painful so he decides to roll down the windows, turn up the radio (so she won't hear it) and just let her rip.

He shartted.

Not much he can do at this point. They're almost to the fair so he just keeps the windows down and hopes that she can't smell it. She can probably smell it, he can smell it, it's bad. After they park, he makes sure she's walking in front of him and just does everything he can to save face.

They go into the Fair and before long they come across a booth selling "Utah State Fair!" sweat suits.

John says, "Oh neat! I'm so excited to see this! When I was little my family used to always buy these sweats and then change into them and wear them around the fair! Let's do that!"

Julie says "Uh, no. I'm not going to wear those."

John buys a set anyway and goes into a port-a-potty to change. He takes off his shirt and puts on the sweat shirt. Then he takes off his pants... they're really bad. He thinks to himself "I don't want to carry these around, that will not work." So he drops his pants and his underwear into the tank. Then he opens the package of sweat-pants.

It's another shirt.

Rather than swallowing his pride and asking Julie to please exchange the shirt for pants, John puts on the sweatshirt like pants. One leg through each arm hole. He pokes his head out and looks around for Julie. She's not nearby so he bolts. He runs through the fair, out to the parking lot and drives away.

That is hilarible. It's so terrible that it's hilarious. Certainly not to John, who suffered pretty major humiliation and should probably fear for his life if he ever runs into Julie again. Or to Julie, who was left stranded in Salt Lake. To an outside party, it's really funny though; it's Hilarible

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Whirlwind

Oh Man! The last two weeks were crazy! It was all pretty fun, but the part of me that likes to sleep at night is still hiding in the corner pouting.

It all started with a trip to Las Vegas with 12 of my friends for Johnny and Arrakis' bachelor/bachelorette party. Typical Vegas shenanigans ensued. If you saw The Hangover it was... entirely not like that. We did drink a lot. But there were no tigers and we knew where everyone else was most of the time.

For the hen party we went to Thunder from Down Under and it was wicked fun! Super-muscles-blonde-dude pulled Arrakis on stage and put her hand down his pants. The whole things was hilarious and sexy and awesome. After the show we went to LAX - we were on the VIP list so we got to go straight in. There were about 200 people waiting (and giving us dirty looks when we got in before them). It made us all feel important. Besides those two highlights, the weekend was spent drinking and playing penny slots, sleeping through the heat of the day (it was about 110 degrees!) and trying to get 13 people on the same page for doing things.

A few days after Vegas was the wedding. Arrakis and Johnny did almost everything themselves. Everyone in the bridal party was asked to help with setup etc. so we kept pretty busy. The wedding itself was lovely. The post-reception party was really fun.

The day after the wedding I slept off all the wine and champagne I drank. That evening I drove through the night to Denver. Why did I go to Denver? I wen for Lindy on the Rocks! It's an awesome event. Three days of workshops and dancing in a city that is NOT here. Unfortunately I was exhausted Friday and Saturday so I didn't really dance a lot. Sunday I was feeling pretty good, so I did get some good dancing in. Unfortunately, we had to leave at 9:30 Sunday night (before the evening/night dance and the after-dance dance-party) because one of the guys I went with had to be at work. So I drove through the night again.

Now my sleep schedule is completely thrown off. Good news is I don't really have anything super crazy going on for a while. School starts next week, but life is kind of slowing down (I hope) so I will hopefully make a full recovery.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Foolish Mouth Noises

What is the point of talking to someone if you don't actually have something to say? Small talk is fine to fill in spaces if you're actually with a live person (zombies make terrible conversationalists) and you're really uncomfortable with silence. There's also all sorts of filler/greetings that is polite and expected when you start a live conversation (in person or talking on the phone). That's fine. I'm totally comfortable with small talk in certain contexts. But if you go out of your way to start a conversation, purposfully call me or send a text message for a little chat, for the love of egg salad, have a point!

The text message is an interesting medium for this subject. I know I haven't always been a fan of text messaging (my skin still crawls at every occurrence of the word "texting," though I have to concede that it is unaviodably made its way into the vernacular and cannot really be avoided). I do use it a lot. I like it for quick, informative and usefull messages (meet here at such-and-such a time, party at this place, etc.) or just to share something I found amusing with a bunch of friends all at the same time. When I send random nonsense to a bunch of people though, I don't expect them to respond. And I don't respond when I get the same sort of thing. In fact, that sort of thing is probably best reserved for Twitter. Ah, Twitter... that's a rant for another day.

Text messaging is not the proper medium for and actual, in depth, conversation. It is especially not the medium for small talk. It's condensed and restricted language. Its purpose is for us to get quickly to the point without having to go through all the awkward greeting, polite small talk, and build up, that comes in a normal context. It's quick and easy. It's abreviated. You cut to the chase and make your point concisely. It is not a format for superflous chatter - it was constructed to filter that out. To steamline our communication. Don't spam me with drivel - I won't respond. Have something to say and then say it!

The same thing goes for phone conversations, to an extent. Some small talk is to be expected, but don't call me with no further plan than polite greeting exchange ("hello, how are you? I'm lovely.") Even if you just have a super weak excuse to call, like telling me about the amazing fries you had for lunch; that's better than calling for no reason. I will spend hours talking to a person, but when they first call, I assume they actually have something to say so I generally won't digress until I've given them a chance to conduct their business. If you don't have anything to add after the initial hellos, chances are you will be listening to me wait politely for you to say whatever it was you called to say. After that, conversation can flow freely. Hopefully the description of your fries will lead to further conversations about any number of things. But a good phone call needs to have a starting point besides just filler. If you don't have anything to say, don't say it!

By the way, I like Mark Twain:
"It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt."

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Like Sands Through the Hour Glass

What is this July you speak of? I suppose there has been some time between June and now... in fact there's a lot that has happened. I just didn't manage to blog anything. I promise I'll try to be better. But August is going to be just as busy, if not more so. Part of the problem last month was that I didn't have internet access at my apartment (long, boring story). I was still online occasionally, but usually it was just for a few minutes and at a time when I was uninspired to write anything here.

So... What happened in July that kept me running about and away from the blogosphere?

I went to a BBQ on the 4th of July. The hosts of said BBQ live close to a park that shoots off fireworks, so we just watched the show from their front yard. When the pyrotechnics started, I found myself on a mattress (brought out for viewing comfort) with this kid I will call Finn (because I asked the internet to give him a pirate name, the name it gave him was Cap'n Finn Cannonballs). We cuddled all through the fireworks and made out a little bit afterward. It was a good time. He got my number when I left.

After that BBQ I went to another friend's house and ended up crashing there on a love sac in the back yard. Also sleeping on the love sac was the friend and his roommate. I was the happy middle of an attractive man sandwich. Sadly neither attractive man has much romantic potential for me.

Shortly after the 4th of July, I went to Lagoon with friends. I also found out that Finn was not going to call me within the standard "3 day rule" time limit thing because his Grandmother just died and he was dealing with funeral and family stuff.

Life went on, I was busy with normal stuff - work, dancing... I took a tango class in July. I now know how to dance Argentine Tango. I am multi-talented! I also came down with a really terrible cold which knocked me out for a full week. I'm still coughing a little, but it's getting better.

Finn never did call. A few weeks went by and I got tired of waiting. After discussing it briefly with our mutual friends, I decided that I didn't like the Finn story and wanted to improve the narrative. So I got his number from those friends and called him.

I moved out of my apartment and back into my parent's house. I'm not thrilled to be back here, but have a long list of good reasons to be, if not happy with the situation, at least content. Moving is a tedious, annoying, energy sapping activity.

Last week I met Finn for coffee on Monday. It went well. Friday we were going to go out, but both of us were kind of exhausted from not sleeping the night before and then working all day. We stayed in and watched a movie. It was very nice and relaxing. I'm kind of getting mixed signals from him actually. I won't go into detail here though. My love life is something that deserves its own post - that is if I want to put it on the internets at all.

Those are the highlights of July. The next few weeks I'm going to be insanely busy. I'm going to Vegas next week for a few days. My friend is getting married the week after that. The day after the wedding I'm going to Colorado for Lindy On the Rocks. After all that things should slow down for a week and then school starts.

So that pretty much gets you up to speed on me. I'm sorry I ignored my blog for more than a month. I'll do better in the future, I promise.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

To Be or Not To Be

I was hanging out with a couple friends a few weeks ago when one of them observed “If I didn’t believe in God, I would probably kill myself.” He went on to ponder how death is the ultimate solution to life’s hardest problems. Without fear of eternal damnation, why not “take arms against a sea of troubles and, by opposing, end them.” It is the most efficient way to completely avoid problems. You certainly don’t have to deal with them if you are dead. Without an after life who cares what messes you leave behind. They ultimately become someone else's problem.

You also miss out on everything that is amazing in life. There are so many wonderful things that happen on a daily basis. Have you ever noticed how incredible life really is? There are so many moments of pure beauty and joy; surely they outweigh the “slings and arrows of life’s outrageous fortune.”

I can’t seem to help but quote Hamlet. I must admit that I have spent a good deal of time considering the famous soliloquy, and I mostly disagree with the Danish Prince. It is not fear of what lies on the other side of death that keeps me from dying. It is a strong attachment to the beauty of life. A few days ago I lay on the floor with a friend of mine laughing until we cried. If I had died the day before, I would have missed this moments of pure, unadulterated, joy.

Every day there is something amazing to experience. There are so many completely exalting experiences to be had. All it takes is a little attention to notice them. Tiny, barely significant things (raindrops caught in rose-petals, warm sand between your toes, a smile from a stranger, the way the wind plays with a skirt) are absolutely worth living for because they happen a million times a day and they add up to create pure beauty.

I then pointed out to my friend that committing suicide is absolutely the most selfish thing you could possibly do. I was considering the effect that something like that has on the people who go on living. I know a girl who’s boyfriend killed himself right after they graduated high school. The emotional trauma he put her through was phenomenal. She pretty much had a complete nervous breakdown. No matter who you are, there will always be someone who loves you enough that their entire universe will collapse if you kill yourself.

My friend, however, turned my statement back to God. Without fear of divine retribution, why not be selfish? Besides, once you're gone, you don't have to worry about the people you left behind. They are no longer your problem. I didn’t have much to say at the time, but this part of the conversation has really stuck with me. I don’t know if he intended it that way, but he kind of implied that without faith it is impossible to be a good person. The same point was brought up in the class I’m taking this summer. In More’s Utopia there is a very poignant paragraph about how Godless people cannot possibly be useful to society or have any motivation to do good things.

This view makes me extremely uncomfortable. Not only because I only believe in God sometimes, and the God I believe in is indifferent to us mortals. I like to think that I am a strong example of how a person can be a good person without believing in God. The way I see it, there is no reason to treat other people in a manner in which I would not like to be treated. What is the point in making other people suffer? Plus, when you treat others with kindness, you’re more likely to get kindness in return.

It actually terrifies me that the only thing standing between some people and selfish malignancy is fear of God. What happens if those people lose their faith? Isn’t it stronger and more meaningful if someone is good person simply for the sake of being a good person? Kindness becomes superficial when it stems solely from a fear of damnation.

I am probably simplifying the matter too much. Religion is something I really have very little experience with and probably don’t really understand. Still, I cannot believe that without God people would lose all sense of decency. I am rather glad that I have never really developed a strong belief in any deity. I like the fact that any goodness I do stems from me. I can be selfless for completely selfless reasons. Neither Heaven nor Hell come into it.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Storytelling

On my birthday I went to dinner and a movie with my parents. We saw Brothers Bloom, which was really good. It's a con-men caper reminiscient of classic movies. Of the two brothers, Stephen is kind of the mastermind - he plans cons like he's writing a story. The ending is very touching and one of the last lines is this (paraphrased probably. I'm going with memory which is not perfect):

...............What we do now is we live like we're telling the greatest story ever told.

It's a wonderful idea, and a lovely way to end the movie. But how possible is it to really live a great stroy from start to finish? Very few people have the rescources or drive to have a really fascinating plot summary. Those who do seem to die young. Take Errol Flynn, for example. He was born in Australia, got kicked out of several schools, owned a plantation, sailed around god knows where, and was a hollywood star by the time he was 30. He inspired the phrase "in like Flynn," married three actresses (not all at once), developed an addiction to morphine. Adventures ensued on and off screen until he died at 50. And that's just the bare bones of his life. Just the blurb on his book inspires excitement!

My personal plot summary will likely be pretty typical: School, Work, Marriage, Retirement. The only stand out moments will be when I was sick and if something amazing happens (like publishing a book or winning a Tony for my play). In the overall scheme of things, those are pretty small blips in an otherwise ordinary life.

I prefer to live like I'm telling a series of vingettes. The over-arching storyline is not so important. I think it's better that way; to live life like you're telling a series of short stories; a volume of poignant moments that are held together by the overall progression of life. The little moments that fall inbetween the story are the ones worth reading.

Monday, June 01, 2009

June is Bustin' Out!

People of Earth, Welcome to June!

On this momentous start of this momentous month, I have officially been alive for a full quarter of a century! See, I have a pie chart to prove it:


Also, since I have a tradition of posting dancing dudes on my birthday:



Ok, so I've used this dude before. But I like him. It's my birthday! I can blog what I want to!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Popping In to Say Hello

Oh, wow. Did I really only post once this month? I've been terribly neglectful of my blogging duties. Sorry about that internet people. I've had a lot going on.

I always have a lot going on. Somehow I've managed to blog though it anyway.

The craziness that has been going on involves some good and a lot of bad. My iPod died, my computer was nearly-fatally injured and barely came back from the edge of death, I rear ended someone so my car is all messed up, I'm running out of money because there was a long run when there were hardly any shifts available at work, I barely got through my classes, I'm going to have to move back in with Mom and Dad when my lease is up. I wasn't at all happy about that last one at first, but I think it will ultimately be quite good. That way I can actually save money and focus on school. When I finally graduate I may have enough fundage to actually get the hell out of Dodge... erm Utah.

I've also been busy dancing and riding my bike. Not quite as much as I need to be. I'm riding Seattle to Portland in July and I'm no where near in as good of shape as I need to be. I'm taking a class this fall, and work is starting to pick up so I'm getting better hours. Summer is here and life is taking me outdoors.

I promise I will start updating more often. Funny thing is, I've kept a list of topics I want to blog about. I just haven't gotten around to actually getting online and doing it.

Monday I turn 25. Woot.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Special




Today is special because of the way the sun is shining. It's making every Japanese Maple I passed on my way to work the most extraordinary red color.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Fire and Brimstone

I've seem to be having a lot of discussions lately about Absurd plays. I helped one friend with a quick paper on Endgame by Beckett, which was really fun; I loves me some Beckett. I've also had several mini discussions about No Exit by Sartre with another friend of mine. Most of these discussions are prompted by a sign at the gym we've been going to. The sign says (this will be a big surprise) "No Exit" it big, red, cartoonish letters. Very few people, I think, would see that and think "weird existential theater." These minor events have brought to the surface thoughts of the absurd plays I've read, and general pondering of existentialism as well.

I want to talk about No Exit though. That play presents one of my absolute favorite versions of Hell. It's simple. Hell is other people. The three characters (ok, there are 4 characters in the play, but the Valet is only there for a few moments) are stuck with each other and have such personalities that it is impossible for them to get along.

The obvious question to ask now is: Who would be in your own personal Hell?

Who do you know that would make eternity complete torture if you had to spend it with them? In the play, the three people are complete strangers. It's difficult to know how you get a long with an ambiguous set of characteristics. So to answer the question, I say you have to pretty much look to people you've met. Assume that in your personal hell, it would be this person or someone almost exactly like them.

It gets more complicated actually. Not only do the two people you pick have to make it hell for you, but it has to be hell for them too. That part makes it very tricky.

I've given this question more though than I probably should have. I know who my two people would be, and I'm not going to name them here. Seems like that would bring some bad joo-joo down on me.

Person A is a girl I knew in High School. She was actually a very good friend of mine from 7th grade on. Because of our history, and a completely underdeveloped ability to mistrust my friends, I forgave her several betrayals. At some point I finally threw my hands up and cut ties with her completely. I was sick of the drama that seemed to follow her everywhere, and sick of having to watch my back all the time.

She did, however, teach me how I didn't want to be. Her blatant hypocrisy about almost everything made me loathe that in myself and in other people. I think it's impossible for people to not be hypocritical sometimes, but I do my best to avoid it. It's one of the only things I have a really hard time forgiving in other people. Throughout our whole friendship there was a sense of competitiveness with her. There were many times we would both go after the same guy. One time she made a play for a guy just because she thought I liked him. I mentioned the drama that followed her around. Plus the passive-aggressiveness that came from that girl was outstanding!

Person B is... well, it's El Douche. Yes, the ex-boyfriend. Seems too easy, doesn't it. But his appearance in my personal Hell has less to do with the whole relationship thing, and more to do with his personality. It could be him, or someone very much like him, either way, I would suffer immensely.

My biggest beef with him is his hypocrisy. When the relationship ended and when our friendship came to a close, he was incredibly critical of me. Thing is, I could have turned every criticism around and said it back to him and it probably would have been more accurate. His ego constantly twists reality to suit him. Plus, he is one of those guys who feels they have to prove their manhood to whoever they're talking to. He brags, a lot, and exaggerates. I promise this isn't bitter ex talk. Just ask other people who know him.

So I obviously don't like either of these people, but I'm pretty sure they would clash horribly with each other too. Even though I dislike them both for somewhat similar reasons, they each have one thing in common that would make it impossible for them to like each other. Both A and B are completely sure that the universe and everything in it was put here just for them*. The level of self-centeredness contained in each of them would probably rip a hole in the fabric of reality if they got together. In our Hell, they would instantly clash and start fighting about who is more perfectly the center of everything. It would, of course, be a very quiet, passive-agressive fight.

*yes, I know that I can be very ego-centric. I'm blogging from the center of the universe for fucksake. I'm often very full of myself. But I'm also aware of people besides myself. My personal selfishness would probably make things worse of all of us too. God, I hope I don't end up in this hell. Perhaps it's time to start repenting all my sins and "get religion." Or not.

Also, apropos of nothing, we've come up with an awesome band name: Samuel Beckett and the Matadors. We'll play existential indy rock and be super pretentious.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Wild Windy Walruses

Oh hello internet people. You're still here. Sorry I haven't posted lately; I have several excuses that you are probably not at all interested in hearing. This is not even a real post, sorry. It's just a collection of interesting things I have discovered in the online universe. By the way, I have named the internet. I didn't do it alone, I had the help of my friends Vanessa and Jake. The internet's name is Ivanovitch Malcolm Gore... I'm not sure why I felt the need to share that with you right now. Anyway, here are some neat things that Ivan can tell you about:

Remember the songs that used to be so awesome, and now you hardly ever listen to them anymore? I haven't made it through all the songs posted, but some of them so far I haven't heard of. Most of them make me smile with a glimmer of nostalgia in my eye.

Somebody has made the stories of everyone she ever kissed a matter of public record. It's strangely fascinating in a very voyeuristic way. Actually it has inspired a writing project for me. I'm now working on a series of short stories about everyone I've kissed. Remembering them is the easy part- I have actually written down the name of every single person I've kissed. The tricky part is actually making each story read as a story rather than a blog post or essay kind of thing. It's a fun exercise.

Book shelves made of books. I want.

Speaking of books, anyone up for a trip to NY? I need to stay at this hotel!

We'll keep with the book theme... sort of. Books have paper. These are also made of paper. And they are mind blowing awesome.

It occurs to me that most of my readers wont really care about this. I think it's awesome. But most of you kids are not lindy-hoppers so you don't really care about a neat-o lindy blog.

My friend, Jeremy, wrote a song about my other friend, Doug. It's a very silly song. He also made a music video for it. It makes me laugh.

If you ever look at the sidebar, you have noticed that I have started doing the twitter thing. I'm not sure I like it. I think this video is hilarious though. I actually "tweeted" it a while ago. It's still funny now that I'm actually blogging about it rather than micro-blogging... yeah. Here, watch:



Whoa... youtube just gave me all sorts of options for posting this! It was fun. Well, kids have fun with this junk. I promise I'll do a real post soon. Really. I will.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

One Two... Get Down

I think we can probably all agree that one of the hardest things in life is "making the first move" in a relationship. This can mean two different things; either asking a person out on a first date, or initiating the kissing thing. From a gender role perspective, both are traditionally the responsibility of the guy, but many of us know that you boys are chicken shit. Often if we girls want to get something done, we just have to do it ourselves. Many guys I've talked to think this is a good thing.

The first incarnation of "the first move" (the asking out), I think is the easy one. How hard is it to go up to somebody (or call, text message, IM, whatever) and say "Hey, there's this thing on this day, do you want to go with me?" It's really not very hard at all. I promise. I've done it several times. In fact, I would say that the majority (though not all) of the first dates I've gone on have been completely due to my own initiative. The way I see it, first dates are really just a way of testing the water - see if the two of you have enough in common to actually spend time together away from a group. Most of the time the first date is a more casual affair and so it's really easy to casually ask about. Plus, if at first you don't succeed, it's just as easy to ask again.

Maybe I cheat because I never ever say "Hey hot stuff, wanna go on a date with me." If that's how you roll, good for you. I'm not really in favor of that approach though for several reasons. First of all, when you ask someone out, it's always better to be specific and have a game plan. "Want to go to this concert on Friday?" is much more effective than "Want to go out sometime?" Second of all, officially labeling something as a Date puts a lot of pressure on both parties. What if you go out and discover that you have nothing in common at all? You still are somehow obligated to act like you're on a date. It adds a weird aspect of formality that I am not a fan of. There are a few other small reasons too, but I don't really feel like going into those.

Anyway I pose the question to you, dear internet users, is it better for the dude or the dudette to do the asking? Does it really matter? And, if the girl asks, should she then expect to have to pay? Concerning the last question, logic tells me yes, but life experience tells me no.

The other possible meaning of "making the first move" is the really scary one. There is much more risk involved in going in for a kiss than in asking a person out. For one thing, it's much easier to recover from a failed invitation than from a rejected pucker.

I would certainly be comforting to know how the other person will react before one goes in for a little lip action. It's often very difficult to judge that though. I guess you always have to option of asking first, but I hate hate hate when guys do that! Seriously. When I am hit with the question "Would it be alright if I kissed you?" I can't help but roll my eyes. I usually say something like "Do whatever you want" which, if I don't want to be kissed, doesn't actually solve the poor boy's problem of knowing how I will react to him trying to kiss me.

I can already hear the argument pertaining to this subject that kisses can just naturally happen. It's true, with the right set up, it can be very hard to tell who really initiates the kiss. I'm sure you've had the moments (they may seem to happen more often when there is alcohol involved) when you're standing fairly close to the object of your affection, you lock eyes, your faces drift closer and closer, suddenly your lips make contact!

It is nice when that happens, and it is sometimes hard to figure out who really went out on a limb and made the move. It had to be one of you though. Someone had to move thier head that extra inch or so to make contact. I promise. I have encountered a few of those magic moments that have ended up being completely fruitless due to the cowardice of one or both parties.

While I have no problem asking guys out, I am very hesitant to initiate kissing. Not that I don't do it, but it happens much less often.

I pose the same question for this situation: Is it better for the Jack or the Jill to take the plunge? Does it really matter? If one takes care of the asking out, isn't it only fair that the other takes the risk on the first kiss?

I think my answer to all these questions is: It all depends on the situation. Therefore, I disallow any of you to use that answer! Ha!

this message has been brought to you by the letter M and the frustrating fact that I have been lying in bed the last 4 hours trying desperately to sleep, because I'm very tired, but not managing to drift off.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Big Ol' Stack of Syrupy Goodness

Rainn Wilson is brilliant. If you don't know that already, now you do.

I won't go on about all the funny stuff he does; believe me there's a lot of it.

I want to tell you today about his new website project thingy. It's kind of a fun little make-you-think sight. Go check it out. Right now!

http://www.soulpancake.com/

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Important Anniversaries

I am so incredibly, completely and unflappably happy! Today officially marks 5 years of full and complete remission for me. That's right, the Wegerner's Granulomatosis has been leaving me alone, without being pushed back with medicine, for 5 full years.

Honestly, it doesn't really change anything. I still have to be careful and see the doctor occasionally etc. 5 years doesn't mean that it wont ever come back. But I feel like it is a very important landmark.

I'm so excited, I could burst! I can't stop smiling, but I also kind of want to cry. Every molecule of air I breathe is like a sundae. Life is so incredibly amazing! If there's one thing I've learned from all this it is that we are so lucky for every single moment of every day.

For those readers who don't know the whole story, I have blogged about it a few times before and to catch up it's just a matter of reading through all those. I recommend starting at the bottom. If you don't have time to read everything, a few years ago I posted the whole story in three installments: One, Two, Three. It's not exactly a small amount of reading, but it will go faster than slogging though everything with the WG tag.

It's really hard to fully express how amazing and important this five year thing is. Some of you, dear readers, have been there with me from the beginning, so I'm guessing you understand. It's almost impossible to tell other people about it and have them get it though. Even so, I want to go up to every person I see and say to them "Guess what! I've been healthy for five years, isn't that great!?" I'm not sure such behavior will go over well.

Of course I'm celebrating. I going out to dinner tonight with my family. Not really doing anything big today, actually. I would throw a big party, but there's snow on the ground and it's had to get all the people I want to include inside one place. This summer though I plan to throw a major celebration. I feel so blessed to have so many people support me the last few years and I want to share with them the wonderful news. So later this year, I will have a big Life party.

Do me a favor, wherever you are: Enjoy the crap out of today!