Thursday, December 13, 2007

yes, we have no bananas

I eat breakfast at work these days. It is much better than trying to eat at 6:30 am. If I eat before I leave for work then I am invariably hungry again midmorning at the same time I would have eaten if I'd just waited to eat at work. So, this morning I am in the break room cutting a banana into a bowl of plain yogurt when a co-worker comes in. He sees what I am doing and says:

"You know, you could just buy yogurt that already has bananas in it."

I am speechless. I know not how to reply to this gross misunderstanding of fresh fruit. I mutter something about how it's cheaper this way and has less sugar, but am glad when he finally leaves so I can cut my banana in peace. Me and my banana.

Some people just don't understand.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

a warm day

Though, today is not warm, except in my coat.

I discovered two very important things today:

1) that even though I have two coats that look the same, one is fleece and one is wool. Thus there is no need for me to continue to freeze every morning standing at the train station in my fleece coat. Now I can stand in my wool coat and be warm. Unfortunately, the slow mind of a cold commuter took far too long to realize this very pertinent fact.

2) that Blogger is NOT notifying me via email when I receive comments on my posts as it has done for years past. All the past month I thought nobody was reading my blog (and I was sad to think no one appreciated my Barry White post), but I discovered this morning that there are indeed comments and that Blogger is in err.

Hurrah for the warm days ahead!

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

brilliant critique once again

The Enchanted April by Elizabeth von Arnim: This book began delightful and ended just the same. It had a very simple plot about four women who go abroad and stay in a big house. The lovely thing about it are the changes that come to each woman while she is away. I recommend it.

The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger: This is j the m's favorite book. It is so beautiful and tragic though, it broke my heart. Before reading this book I imagined it would be about the wife of the time traveler written about by H.G. Wells in the Time Machine. Not's an entirely new concept of time traveling. It is a great read, one I'll remember a long time.

The Grand Sophy by Georgette Heyer: This book was loaned to me by the lovely kt, who said I should love it. And I do! It's a silly sort of vague romance (where you have no idea it's a romance until the last page, unless you were told so initially) written 60 years ago, and the writing style is so comical it won my heart.

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer: I have nothing very good to say about this book. In's all bad. I had high hopes of this book. It was recommended by many people--especially because it was written by a BYU grad. But it was very dull and tiring. The thing that kept me reading was the hope that it was about to get good, but it never did. It was about very little--basically lust and staring. There was minimal plot as well--aside from the lust and staring, the only plot was a tiny skirmish at the end which was also overly dramatic. I am very disappointed, especially after all the hype. I will not waste my time reading anymore of the series.

Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine: A friend told me to read this book long ago. I have finally managed it. It is different than the film, but I liked it very much. It was an exceptionally light read.

The Boleyn Inheritance by Philippa Gregory: I am delighted with this book. Gregory really brought to life the women portrayed in the book, wives 4 and 5 of Henry VIII. I am going to read the entire series. History portrayed in this way is at its most interesting.

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides: I liked this book quite a bit. It is not depressing--even with 5 suicides. It is written in a very light manner, from the perspective of a spying group of boys. It is a bit sad though, but mostly just interesting.

Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder: This book has a very interesting premise. A girl becomes the food taster to an important man, and she learns all about detecting poisons. I think the writing is so-so, and the story is carried out well enough. I am planning to read the next book in the series. It's an action-adventure genre.

General Winston's Daughter by Sharon Shinn: I liked Sharon Shinn before I read this book. Now I'm having second thoughts. I must concede the point that I may be the one to have changed--perhaps my taste in books is evolving and I am becoming a snob.

Girl with a Pearl Earing by Tracy Chevalier: This is an interesting peek into the life of a dutch maid in the home of a great painter. I enjoyed it. I suspect the movie deviates greatly from the plot, however. We shall see.

ode to janien

A song for janie the magnificent, whose birthday is today. Happy Birthday Janie!

P.S. Some may choose to ignore his muttering at the beginning...
I love Janie!

Friday, November 30, 2007

requisite blog entry

Last month there was an earthquake not too far from here. However, due to my recent inactive state of blogging, I missed my chance to write a stunning original piece on how the earthquake was an “amazing” experience which was both frightening/exciting on multiple levels where my life flashed before my eyes and I thought I was going to die and that this was the “big one.” The next paragraph would then tell the story of exactly what I was doing when the earthquake hit. Everybody else who lives here already blogged this, however, so I will forgo my opportunity even if the loss is felt acutely.

Or not. Actually, I didn’t think about anything during the earthquake except how I wanted to brace my bookcase to keep it from falling, but then decided that was a monumentally stupid idea, so went to stand in the closet instead which was also monumentally stupid considering the shelves of crap above my head. Then I went to the store and bought food because I didn’t have any.

The end.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

speaking of which...

Sesame Street - Would You Like to Buy an O

I mentioned this in my previous post. I'm so delighted to have found it!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Ode to Geometric Shapes

I don't like circles. I like square things. I am delighted with square dinner plates especially, square cut necklines, square glasses frames, and square gemstones. Squares are just the top of the pile though--I like geometric shapes, period. (I do not consider circles or spheres to be geometric.) I once went on a trip with my family where the sole object I purchased was a paperweight. It doesn't even have the name of the location on it (and, consequently, I can't remember where I got it. Some giant outdoor amphitheater carved into a mountain were we saw a musical). This paperweight is a tetradecagon, or a 14 sided stone polygon. Apparently, James Blunt also shares my love of geometric figures. He sings about it on sesame street. I hope you enjoy it:) It's not quite up as far as "Would you like to buy an O," but still worth seeing.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

a brilliant critique on such and such

I've decided to begin reviewing the books I read. This has been requested many times. I now succumb. My usual excuse for not reviewing them is that I never have much intelligent to say about them except my general impression (e.g. lame, loved it, duller than trout, etc). I read books for pleasure and don't analyze or take them literally, seriously, or personally. I also have very low retention (often, anyway) and tend to forget books immediately after I read them, so all that's left is the impression.

And so, here are the impressions of the books that have shown (past and present) on my recent books list.

Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell: This book may be slow moving and thick, but is well worth the effort. I very much enjoyed this one. I kept checking it out of the library and returning it after I ran out of renewals, and finally got my own copy from This book consoled me during my first month of riding BART, and will always have a special place in my heart. It's fantasy in the real world, with men in suits who read a lot. This book will stay with you, and the ending was most delightful (in a solemn sort of way).

The Robber Bride: I was overcome by the general ickyness of this book. I didn't finish it. I recommend avoiding the aisle this book is on. It is a book about 4 women, 1 of whom ruined the lives of the other 3. The book tells the story of the ruination of each life and, when it isn't a flashback, the events of the present are told 3 times from each perspective. Slow and painful.

Politically Correct Bedtime Stories: This book was fun. It was a combined with the sequel (where you turn the book upside down and start reading from the other end.) It was somewhat tedious, however, and tended to use the same phrases over and over and beat the P.C. issue to a bloody pulp instead of a delicate froth, as I would have preferred. In its few shining moments, it was clever.

Don't Know Much About History: I'm still not finished with this book. I'm really not that tempted to read it (history, that is) unless I force it on myself on BART, and even then I tend to read it very slowly (I'm in love with fiction, what can I say?). But what I have read is exceptionally delightful and funny. It brings out the (stinging and sarcastic) side of history that you miss in the classroom, and tells all the great stories that you hear history majors telling at parties because they read original documents. But YOU can outsmart them with less effort.

Orlando: I love Virginia Woolf. Her books are strange and hard to follow, but she comes up with the most ludicrous plots that amuse me vastly. This book was her lightest book (in subject matter), and was about a boy who turned into a girl (magically, not medically or emotionally) and seemed to live for centuries on end. It does have a stellar moment that resembles the court case of Jarndyce vs. Jarndyce as portrayed in Dickens's Bleak House (which is supremely delightful!) where your inheritance money is used up in a long dragged out court case. Lovely book.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book 7): Uh..totally awesome. It left me satisfied. I will say no more on this one.

The Hours: I read this one because it is a sort of tribute to Virginia Woolf. I saw the movie first and loved it, and meant to read the book. I did eventually start it, only to realize it was most imperative to first read Mrs. Dalloway, which I did. It tells the story of three women--one being Virginia Woolf as she first begins to write Mrs. Dalloway, one being a woman who is reading Mrs. Dalloway, and another woman who is a contemporary woman whose life is similar to Mrs. Dalloway. It was lovely. But sad. Alas!

The God of Small Things: This book was beautiful in style, story, and language, like no other I've read. It's no wonder it won the Man Booker prize a few years ago. It tells a (heartbreaking) story starting at the ends and converges to the middle of the story, the climax, at the end of the book. Each chapter alternates between the beginning and end of a story, so by the time you reach the end of the book you know what will happen, but it is still beautiful. I would be wary of the final chapter, however.

Gilead: I read this book for a book club. It is the ramblings of an old man, in no particular order. It is a challenging read, and I wouldn't recommend it unless you are motivated. It did have great moments and portrayed interesting father/son relationships, but it's hard to get through. Gilead is a city in Iowa.

One Good Knight: A stupid book about a knight who is a woman. I began to suspect Mercedes Lackey wrote badly during this read.

The Fairy Godmother: The prequel to One Good Knight. This book confirmed my then suspicion that Mercedes Lackey writes badly. It was pretty lame. She did create an interesting setting where the story took place, however.

Freakonomics: very cool. I'd recommend this as a must read.

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: This is my first time through the book, amazingly enough. From watching the movies, I didn't realize the actual book would be quite so juvenile, but it is. It is definitely written for children, and the story moves extremely fast. It was still a lovely book, nonetheless.

The Stolen Child: I LOVE this book. It tells the story a changling who steals the life of a boy and pretends to be him, as well as tells the story of the boy whose life was stolen and goes to live with the other changlings. It is interesting, moving, and beautiful. I highly recommend it.

The Alchemist: This book is very short, but very good. I loved this book as well. It's about a shepherd boy who goes in search of his "personal legend." I highly recommend this one as well. If you drive, I'd recommend listening to it. The narrator's voice is the icing on the cake.

The Enchanted April: I'm still reading this one, but so far is excessively delightful!

The Corrections: Also still reading, but is very diverting.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

professor plum, in the library, with the calculator. Take that!

I have exceeded the proper number of calculators (two). Today I bought my 5th.

Journey of calculators:

tiny_white_thing: I got this free somehow, and you couldn't see the numbers right unless you strained the calculator into an arc.
Sharp (theforgettablemodel): scientific calculator..with a broken flip sheath. I use this one at work now (because I'm pessimistic/realistic and assume anything nicer will be stolen).
TI-85: purchased in 7th grade. It took me a while to warm up to this was my first grapher:)
TI-89: purchased solely to get an A in physics 3220 in college. Test problems weren't possible to complete without it. (really!)
TI-30x IIS: scientific calculator (with stat functions), purchased from the allowed calculator list for my Fundamentals of Engineering (EIT) exam. The allowed calc list had only 5 models on it. As if anyone would already own one of them. Psh.

SIGH. The EIT exam. Oct. 27. I should have started studying 2 months ago, but I did not. Alas! I must cram far too much knowledge in my head in too short a time--information I worked for diligently over 6 years but ended up forgetting. If I seem a rare blogger of late, know I am thinking of you whenever I am not studying for the EIT. I made up a study schedule on google calendars. I searched for EIT under public google calendars, and it seems other people have started studying before I have. At least I started a month in advance. That's better than the night before.

Wish me luck.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

never leave me

Look, it's still there.

Monday, August 27, 2007

massacre of garlic: the kitchen revolution, part 2

Garlic. A lovely thing. Long ago when forced to read Things Fall Apart (prior to sophomore year of high school--the summer reading assignment) I noticed how very fond of garlic the main character guy is. His name escapes me, actually. It escaped far too many years ago to hope of an honest retrieval. Thus I cheat and look in the book. Ah. Okonkwo. Unless I am mislead (very probable) there is a passage somewhere where he says how much he likes to eat ropes of garlic but his wife doesn't like him to.

Thus I first came to ponder garlic. I did not swoon.

Many years later, after growing up without knives that cut, I have learned to delight in garlic. I have chopped garlic, peeled garlic, tease those that buy pre-peeled garlic, ate garlic, watched others eat garlic, and cooked with garlic. But secretly, subliminally, I yearned for a garlic press. I would say (as I do with all kitchen supplies that I want), when I am rich.

Alas, I shall never be rich, and thus I bought a garlic press 2 weeks ago. And now I can properly massacre garlic. And swoon.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

rock of ages

Today I become 24. According to my birthday theory, I should have celebrated yesterday.

For a long while I was reluctant to turn 24. I didn't like 24, thought it had no redeeming qualities--especially compared to the marvelous and glorious 23. 23, because it was a prime number and also the day of the month I was born. My golden birthday, golden year, has drawn to a close.

But two days ago I realized an important thing. 24 does have redeeming value. It is 4!, or 4 factorial. A very special age. The only age where you can be a factorial and know what a factorial is. At, 3!, age 6, I must admit I did not know. But at 4! I do. 5!, I hope I'm dead long before that.

I am compiling a list about reasons to love ones age. It does have holes, however. Those years are looking bleak.

<10: Too young to care about age number excitement. Just want to get older.
10: The world of double digits welcomes you.
11: Repeating number age...and prime, but too young to care.
12: Finally get out of primary!
13: Become a distinguished teen. And a prime, once again.
14-15: Nothing exciting about these years. I don't know how I survived them.
16: drivers license. and date. and 4^2. and 2^4.
17: My favorite number, also a lovely prime. And a Dancing Queen. Only seventeen.
18: can vote.
19: can buy cigarettes. (ha)
20: finally out of teens, can now be taken seriously by those old college boys (not that it did any good)
21: can buy alcohol. (theoretically)
22: another repeating number. Positively thrilling.
23: prime, golden, odd, etc. lovely.
24: 4!
25: 5^2
26: a very bleak year.
27: 3^3
28...not yet compiled.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

the abandoned posts post

There have been a handful of times where I started writing a blog entry and then never finished it for one reason or another. I have decided to post them as is. [with commentary]
Abandoned on 9/1/06: this entry had no title.

A woman should never be seen eating or drinking, unless it be lobster salad and Champagne, the only true feminine & becoming viands.
~Lord Byron (journal entry for 25 Sept. 1812)

[I wanted to write something about how hilarious this quote is, but could never improve on it and deleted everything I wrote.]


In remembrance of things lost

I thought I'd lost my favorite bookmark a while back. I was sad..but then miraculously found it after several weeks. The elation that follows from such a stupid thing...

It is singular how soon we lose the impression of what ceases to be constantly before us; a year impairs; a lustre obliterates. There is little distinct left without an effort of memory. Then, indeed, the lights are rekindled for a moment. . . . Let any man try at the end of ten years to bring before him the features, or the mind, or the sayings, or the habits, of his best friend.

~ Lord Byron (Ravenna Journal, 1821-22).

The tree was taken out and replaced with the japanese tree lilac [here, I must finish the thought. There was once a lovely tree that was next to the entry gate of a previous dwelling place. But mum removed it, and put in not a lilac tree, but a tree lilac. I missed the old tree. Alas. But I don't remember either of them anymore.]
9/15/06: this entry consists of a defunct link to a youtube video. I don't remember what it was, unfortunately.
12/30/06: this entry is just one line. There is no title.

Today was another unremarkable day. I awoke, and did several dull and forgettable things.
4/8/07: Dh and I went hiking at none other than Foothills Park, where we returned to car trouble. Many people contributed to the plot, and dh suggested I turn it into a play. Which I never finished.

Foothills Park: the play

Foothills Park: the play, is based on a true story that took place on April 6. The names have not been changed to protect the innocent, though most are protected by default since I never knew their names anyway.

Dramatis Personae:
crotchety old man
female park ranger #1
female park ranger #2.

Foothills Park parking lot, 4 pm. lr and dh are trying to flee the park in lr's Ford Focus, but they find the car unwilling to accommodate their wishes.

Act I

Scene I:
[Enter lr and dh. They enter aforementioned vehicle, and lr attempts ignition.]

[Months later, after dh left for zimbabwe, he decided to make a contribution to the play effort and wrote a poem, which I might post in future if he consents.]
Finally, 2 weeks ago I had planned to write a blog entitled "three dressers in one week," but never managed to. It was going to be about how I had bought three dressers in one week and managed to find them all happy homes, while finally liking the 3rd one I bought.
There are no more. As yet.

label failure

Most of my posts have the same label, blather--because that's what they are. I realize this defeats the purpose of labels. Janie the magnificent has a brilliant array of lovely labels (or categories, as she calls them), of which I am exceedingly jealous. I may consider reworking my label listings. Any label ideas are welcome.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

fae flying high

Fae is my butterfly. She is approximately 20 inches wide. Yellow and orange wings. I somehow fit her into my luggage after buying her at F.A.O Shwartz in New York City 6 years ago during choir tour. (my apartment is hot. This must be said. Now that it is said I shall move on.) Fae is the centerpiece of my stuffed animal collection. Only the most prized of my stuffed animals have names.

Herman: a very tall tortoise. He is my sole purchase from my one visit to Moab.
Walter: a rabbit, sent via david hubbards trunk from my own dear mum (for easter).
Clara: a raccoon, whose name I forgot and then remembered.
Ross Calvin: An owl. Many in high school said my owl looked like a furby (from behind), but it does not. I repeat, it does not. My mum bought me this owl at the hospital gift shop once after I had a PFT.
Fae: the lovely butterfly.

I have recently done a childish (but exciting!) thing and pinned netting to a ceiling corner and put all my stuffed animals in it. Fae is on the bottom, flying, seemingly supporting the rest. It is pinned very insecurely above my bed. I rest easy in the knowledge that no one I know has died from stuffed animals falling on them in sleep. It did take two tries to make it stay (though insecure) and Walter does not fit...or rather, I am afraid it will collapse if I put him in. Eventually I will get my film developed, and when I do I'll post a picture of the delightful spectacle.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

zip code heaven

I have had three zip codes in one year. I'm through with zip codes. (12345 might be ok though.) I have cast off multiple zip codes, and they have gone to zip code heaven. Zip code heaven is a lovely place with a health spa and free car rental. I have moved yet again--away from Melville. Alas! Though I will miss my delightful and warm hearted roommates, I will not miss how the little rocks from the walkway always stuck into the the soles of my sandals. I probably trailed many such rocks into the house unknowingly. But I threw many of them away, it's true, so I am not only responsible for trailing them into the house, but for depleting the ground cover.

12345 is actually a zip code too. It belongs to Schenectady, New York. I guess USPS didn't think it necessary to be skipped due to its semi-barely-uniqueness. In San Francisco, there are many buildings that skip the 13th floor, however. I couldn't believe it the first time I noticed, but apparently it was common practice. Those poor deluded 14th floor workers. Also, why does friday + 13th = stupid horror films on tv? Why doesn't "Freddy vs. Jason" air on monday the 13th instead?

Today I bet my life, and won it.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

important announcement

Today I saw a purple lady. She was across from me on BART this morning. She missed her bus to take her to BART, because she had to go back to her house to get papers she needed in order to go to some registration type office in Oakland. She was running 30 minutes late. She broadcasted this quite loudly while on her cell phone. I didn't want you to miss out on the important information.

She wore a purple elastic in her hair, a purple shirt, purple pants, purple shoes, and purple fingernail and toenail polish. Very impressive matching effort.

Monday, July 23, 2007

bally total fitness

The only place you can really see men and women with deteriorating health run like the wind (even if it be a gentle breeze), is at the train station. They run in suits. They run in high heels. They run carrying an unmanageable number of bags, which they may or may not drop. I see it nearly every day. It is sort of funny, after all. (definitely funny.) People who would never quicken their step under any other circumstance (excepting tragic events, of course) find themselves propelled forward. Today there was a pink lady with bags. A pink lady with a pink shirt and pink pants. By the way, nobody ever posted about the pink joke.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Northanger Abbey: A reason to love.

It all began one wintry night, when the sky was dark and the wind howled...

The movie showing (that wintry night) featured a film beloved by few: Northanger Abbey, the unsung Jane Austen flick.

Like janie the magnificent (who introduced me to this film), I have grown to harbor a great fascination and love for Northanger Abbey. There are far too many who fail to love it as they should, and each time I convert another follower I cannot help but rejoice. And so, I have decided to compose a list of reasons to love (the film).

Why I love Northanger Abbey (BBC)

  1. The male lead's last name is Firth. Peter Firth. No relation to Colin Firth, unfortunately, but this point alone is important enough that I need not go on...(yet I do).
  2. The theme music is excessively melodramatic. Quite laughable, actually. Not at all fitting for a jane austen.
  3. There is a horrific saxophone and soprano duet during a nature walk that you just can't miss.
  4. Peter Firth sings somewhat painfully out of tune, but at least he tries. With his own voice--which is more than most can claim.
  5. All the actors and actresses are VERY ugly, except for the two leads who are so-so.
  6. The film was made in the 1980s, with hair to match.
  7. The male antagonist is super creepy, and far uglier than any other cast member, except possibly for the old guy in the giant yellow wig.
  8. There is a woman in the ballroom with a beauty spot on her face 1 inch in diameter.
  9. You can hear Darth Vader breathing in the background sometimes.
  10. The female lead (often) wears her hair with tight curls poking out onto her forehead that looks like a claw.
  11. There are daydream sequences (that don't always make sense)!
  12. The male lead somehow wins the heart of the female lead by insulting her on the sly.
  13. The male lead wrinkles his nose in one scene, which is positively delightful.
  14. The male lead goes after the female lead, riding a long long way. She is sought. And all ends happily in Jane Austen fashion. Hurrah!
Really, I could go on and on. SO delightful. As a side note, your enjoyment will be magnified if you first read the book Northanger Abbey is a spoof of (mainly) (and which is alluded to throughout the film): The Mysteries of Udolpho, by Ann Radcliffe. 675 pages of wild and crazy Gothic fun. I should also say that you should read the book Northanger Abbey before you watch the movie, but I don't want to be too demanding, even if I am old fashioned.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

two buttercups.

Point 1:
Buttercup is my powerpuff girl of choice. She has black hair, a deep voice, and attitude. A fine rearview mirror ornament, I dare say. I do have to reapply black marker from time to time to make sure her hair remains in tact, since it is constantly rubbing against my giant pink fuzzy dice, which I inherited from my oldest sister. I purchased my buttercup keychain in china town, New York City. It was my only purchase, I must admit, besides a pair of fake glasses. Everyone was doing it. Fake glasses were the rage...

Point 2:
I have purchased a new phone. More specifically, I upgraded and paid minimal amounts. As with all new phones, there are no acceptable ringtones and I was forced to download something to satisfy my excessively high standards. This is what I chose:

The Foundations - Build Me Up Buttercup

Now I dance a jig while searching for my phone. You can too.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

book derivatives

I should like to point out (which is why I am doing so) that I have a new widget on the sidebar called, Recent Books. I do read, after all. Not as much as I used to, but I'm still respectable. I have had many questions over the years regarding what I read, so now you can keep up if you so choose.

Another new addition to the sidebar is in the blogroll--zim life. DH has gone away. Alas!

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Melville: a memoir

Melville: person and place.

Person: Herman. Herman Melville, who wrote Moby Dick. 1819-1891. His birth and death years are eerily numeric mirrors of one another. My death by this reckoning will be in 2038 at age 55. Alas.

Place: Melville. Melville Ave. I live on this road. Rather, I should say, I live to the side of the road. In a house. Part of a house. There are four bedrooms, all with bedding on the beds and clothes in the closet. Never before, since the initial requisition of Melville as an LDS habitation, has anyone been alone-in-Melville. Until now. I have become its sole occupant. 3 out of 4 are away. The probability of this event occurring is exceedingly low. No one has ever been alone-in-Melville. Before moving here I decided to take the role of Queequeg, in Moby Dick. I will be brave, and go down with the ship. Alas. I alone must bear this burden, for no one will ever again be alone-in-Melville.

(It may be that I am mistaken and someone has been alone-in-Melville before. It is quite likely, actually, especially during last Christmas. Somebody had to be the last to leave, and the first to come back. But I'd rather be overly dramatic and pretend that no one has ever been alone-in-Melville so that I may die in peace.)

Moby Dick was published in 1851, one year after the Scarlet Letter. It is semi-ridiculous that I remember when the Scarlet Letter was published. But there are worse things. It's no wonder I remember, however, since I have used Hester Prynne as a fake name for years in various contexts...and it was only last week that I was thinking about writing a poem entitled, Arthur Dimmesdale: man or mineral? I did not write it, however (all mankind may thank me later), and I probably never will. Mostly I chose not to write it because I couldn't remember his first name, and until I looked it up 1 minute ago I couldn't think of anything but Richard. Therefore I will write this (horrible) poem instead:

Richard Dimmesdale: Man or Mineral?

A man would not
I fear
under that name
such a silly name

mineral, definitely
a name
is inspired--
Rock of Death!

Rock of Death
jumps from the scaffold
and splats.

He didn't weigh very much after all.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Graduation: a thing of the past

To be specific, I graduated 3 months ago ("degree conferred"). It's true. But I didn't graduate until 2 weeks ago.

Italics are everything. Everything. Underline is a thing of the past. Underline is dead. Dead. Another digression(
This reminds me of an assignment I once had in Jr. High English class. It was entitled, "Really and Very are dead." Dead. We were to compose brilliant essays without using those words for adverbs. I forget whether mine was brilliant or not.)
Yet another digression(
I must admit I looked up "really" in the dictionary to check the part of speech. I had suspected it was an adverb, but wasn't certain. Now that I am certain, I am not sure why. Don't adverbs modify verbs? Case: "He was really cute." Cute is an adjective. Was is a verb, however, it doesn't seem to be getting modifed by the "adverb," but cute does. Blah. I need an English review, it would seem.)
I used to think underlining very important and grammatically essential. Before my librarything days, I used to keep track of all the books I read in my journal. I would underline all the book titles, just like I was taught. (Yes,I've been a drone, an ant in sunglasses.) I did it even when nobody would see it but me. Even though I have decided underlining to be out of style, it was very helpful to spot a title without having to scan thru all the text on a page. But. I digress from the main topic of this post.)

Graduation. I went. I had 10 seconds of fame when I saw myself on the stadium big screen. I got sunburned too, alas (with alack--for you, Janie;-)) Since then the sunburn has faded, as have the lilies and roses that those who love me gave me that day.

that's all.

Monday, June 25, 2007

package tracking

Can I just say how much I love being able to track ordered packages online? I feel so in-the-know, like I'm making the journey vicariously and rooting on the sidelines. My excitement builds with each new stop scanned into the list, the time in and out of each processing location, changing hands, getting closer and closer. Yet I marvel at how quickly my latest package has jumped from Fort Worth to Oakland. There are only 1.5 hours between the departure at Forth Worth and the arrival at Oakland, according to the tracker... The flight is 3 times that long. Hmm. Hmm. Even if the 2 hour time difference is taken into account, that's still pretty quick. These are the things I think about. This is what thrills me. Package tracking. Oooo baby. FedEx me a package. Make my day.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

on the train.

I ride the train now. I have learned to run in high heels. Sitting at my desk, at 4:55 pm, I suddenly realize nothing matters more in the world than getting on the 4:59 train. On those days, the elevator invariably stops repeatedly, with most people taking it to move only one floor. I think that is a silly thing. I have come to know the low feeling one gets when one arrives at the platform just in time to see the train leave. I have been filmed by video crews while driving into the BART parking lot (really, how interesting could it be to film cars parking?), and have been filmed as I put my train card into the reader. My fame has reached another dimension, it seems...

My life is governed by the train. Going to and fro. Pulling my BART card out of my wallet over and over. 7:21 am, 4:59 pm, etc etc.

Once, a man offered me his seat. I did not take it. He looked so tired. Should I have taken it? I know not.

People snore on the train too. Probably the same people.

Upon returning at night, there is one rider (youngish man) who waits by the door and sprints out before the doors completely open in an effort to be the first one to the escalator. He doesn't always make it. He could plan ahead and place himself in the train car that would be the shortest distance from the escalator--but he doesn't. He's always slightly off.

I read on the train. It is the one truly fabulous thing about riding train, the one consolation for time lost in transit.

Another thing--every time I get off the train in the morning, coworkers pop out of nowhere. We are all on the same train but don't know it. To own the truth, I prefer it that way. I'd rather sit alone and read, which is semi-embarassing to admit. If I knew the person sitting next to me, I'd feel obliged to talk to them. Sigh.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

The only joke I know

It’s true. I only know one joke. To assume I am not funny because of it (hmm, is that right? maybe it is cause and not effect), however, would be a mistake. I am funny. I say funny things. I say non-funny things in funny ways. But even were that not the case, my one joke is stupendous enough to withstand any harsh criticism of its loner status.

The Joke:

Teller of joke: Do you know what a twip is?

Tellee: No, what is it? [In my experience, this line is most often not performed to satisfaction and one is obliged to prompt the tellee to the correct response.]

Teller: A wide on a twain.

I think the source of this joke was dear mummy. Maybe.

Other jokes from my childhood I only remember vaguely. There was one joke that had to do with silverware… “a knife an a fork! a knife and a fork!” But I don’t think that was the main point of it. Then there was a joke about 10 cent oranges, about which I remember nothing else, except that they were “very very fresh.” Another had to do with a pink house and pink books with pink paper and pink words. I don’t think the pink joke was very funny.

Feel free to post these jokes if you recall them…

As a final point, which is hardly worth mentioning, I do remember a knock knock joke, but I don’t count it because knock knock jokes are excessively lame and stupid.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

the master

Now, I am the master. (Luke, I am your father)

After 2 years of agonizing consideration, I have decided not to go for a PhD. I am well aware of all the things I am giving up:

1) the insolvent life of a poor starving student
2) my extra long twin mattress sheets (pink dot and pink stripe sets--mix and match!), which, alas! cannot fit on any adult size mattress. However, I am far too enamoured with my sheets to give them up entirely, so I have determined to make a quilt out of them. Yes, I am ridiculous and in love with my sheets. So what.
3) an excessively large closet
4) the mental acuity of a jelly bean, brought on by evil classes with evil teachers
5) student membership rates in professional societies. Drat.
6) the title, Dr. Laura. There already exists a Dr. Russon, after all.
7) four years of staring at finite element code
8) student rates on football tickets
9) Vaden health care (alas!!)
10) homework.

Thus, henceforth I shall be known as Master Laura.

The end.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

the color of poetry

Janie the magnificent and I have composed two sets of symbiotic poetry about complimentary colors.

Our method: one of us wrote a poem with a color in mind, one line at a time, telling the other the word at the end of that line. The other person wrote a poem that rhymes with each line of the first poem, based on the complimentary color. We wrote these without sharing the content until they were complete, with no regard to meter or line length. The poems were to be 3-6 lines. A lovely activity for a Sunday afternoon, I think, perhaps, one of the loveliest to be had.

The first:

written by Janie:
blue (topic, not title)

Shiny travel bag
unleashed, nimbly zipping in an arc through clouds
landing by high heels in baby hues

No flowers are dark
a plush carpet rolls out
ready for toes.

written in reply by me:

under the heat my body flags
the popsicle my tongue enshrouds
A sunflower, freshly cut and bruised
in my hair as I embark
I look for more, and finding none, pout.
It was not worth this blister, I suppose.

The second:

written by me:

I will paint the house anew
And the chair squeaks when I sit
But, my hair is curly
And I love new bowls
It is enough.

written in reply by Janie:

Shards of broken heart poison the brew
bubbling amethysts and dragon spit
simmer in dull pulse; slowly, surely
reducing palpitating pain and filling holes

Every skin I don, I slough.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

me and my B-

For all those who were secretly (or not secretly) hoping for a disgraceful finish to my economics career, you will be delighted to hear the following: I got a B- in game theory. Yes. A B-. Not even a B. I've never gotten a B. It would have been nice to get a B just once. I might be more reconciled to my B- had I hitherto received a B. But. It was not to B. (Hideously bad pun in honor of DH.)

I have had a B+ though...on two occasions. On both occasions, I was exceedingly grateful for the B+. I suppose I should be grateful for my B- as well, but I find myself lacking in such desire.

I find consolation in the fact that no one will ever see my B- since it's in the last quarter on my transcript. But then, it won't matter that no one will see it since I will have already told everyone it exists. Alas. I worked very hard in the class too. Alas. I will accept consolation from this point until April 30 in the form of flowers, gifts, or stinging commentary on this post. Thank you.

Monday, March 12, 2007


You may wonder, why do I have an avatar on the sidebar whose clothes/background keep changing? Because I'm silly and it amuses me. Maybe I secretly wish I were 8 years old and could play dress up. But I guess it's not a secret anymore.


I've become an iblank. It was inevitable.

iblank: one who has an association with ithings.

ithings: things including but not limited to: itunes, ipod, iphone, imac, etc.

But it was not always thus. I used to use windows media player. But then came a series of events which led me to itunes. Apparently, I have been living in a graduate apartment complex for a whole year without realizing I had access to the music collections of my neighbors. I owe many thanks to "Weminuche National Forest" for his extensive collection of jazz and my subsequent discovery of Miles Davis. I have found Miles Davis to be very good homework music.

I did wonder how I managed to avoid discovering itunes until last autumn, and I realized the answer last week. I never owned an ipod. Since I never owned an ipod, I was never forced to download itunes in order to upload music to the ipod. Yet...I have succumbed. I finally quit resisting and bought an ipod shuffle, for the sole purpose of being able to listen to books on tape while I run. Sigh. I have become an iblank, and there is no going back.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

the way to fame

I have done it. I am a success. I am famous. How do I know this? Because I have been quoted on librarything's website!!! (Along with hundreds of other bloggers, but that's a minor point). Who knew I would ever be read by strangers in far off regions of the world...

Thus, finding I am now famous, I can no longer entice people to let me hyperlink their web pages under the pretense that "nobody reads my blog anyway." I am a fake, a fraud, a phony...and can no longer spew such lies.

I am famous.

I shall now write a stupid, yet celebratory poem, entitled, Fame:

is not easy
the way to fame
is through me
my site
is lame
but my fame
is totally awesome

the end.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

avocado poetry

It has been far too long since I have posted lame poetry. Here is my latest, composed in gchat, not originally meant to be a poem but turned out to be one. This poem is dedicated to dh.

poem inspired by dh purchasing the snarkout boys and the avocado of death, by Daniel Pinkwater.

the old ones
are very very
with a vengeance.

Monday, February 19, 2007

cheesecake: the peer pressure drug

As an update to the long dark confusing and pointless battle of cheesecake, I have come to my conclusion. I only buy cheesecake under peer pressure. In the same vein as stupid people who do drugs at parties because everybody else is doing it, I do cheesecake when everybody else is doing it. I am weak. But in those few and far between stolen moments with cheesecake, I sort of like it. A little bit. Enough to look forward to the next stolen moment, but not enough to go when I am not mislead by others...

secret delight p.s. :
I purchased my current bottle of shampoo under the impression that it was peach colored, in a clear bottle. To my surprise, it seems that it is actually yellow in a pink bottle. I find far too much delight in seeing the pink peek out at me as the shampoo level lowers. For those looking for a similar thrill, buy this.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Knives that cut: the kitchen revolution, part 1

This past Christmas I was gifted with a knife. It is a lovely knife. I hand wash it, gaze at it, and lovingly put it away (although, there is no alternative to hand washing seeing that I have no dishwasher, except myself that is). I also inherited a knife block with several unwanted knives that were supposedly "irritating" but to me seem like gifts from above.

Now I can cut onions quickly and only have my eyes water *after* cutting rather than during cutting. Now I can cut tomatoes with out mashing them at the same time. Now I can cut grapefruit with ease and not struggle to cut through the membranes...

Sigh. It is love, truly. My life will never be the same.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

the dirty shirt story

Once upon a time there was a shirt. Someone wore the shirt. A man. Who wore big shirts. A blue polo-ish shirt. With stripes.

Point 1 has been established: existence of shirt.

Once there was a book. A foundation analysis book that I ordered (on, paid for, waited for. Point 2: existence of book order (one cannot be certain that the book itself really existed).

Then one day the "book" arrived (yesterday). The package had been torn open, the book removed, replaced by the shirt (folded), and the brown package was resealed (a machine seal!!!) in plastic. I kidd you not. A complicated operation, all in effort to steal my foundation analysis book. Why would someone want this book? It's not as if it's interesting (or useful) to more than 0.001% of the population. And why would they give me a shirt? They got rid of a perfectly good shirt just so that I would receive a package (which, by the way, had the original packing slip in it still). To make it worse, the shirt wasn't even clean--it smells like mildew. And there are white bits of paper all over it. Maybe I'll die of anthrax.

What joy is mine. I paid $40 dollars for a giant dirty shirt. Gee, thanks.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

econ: a way of life.

I have done a stupid thing.

Let me rephrase. I have done many stupid things. My latest stupid thing is this: becoming an economist.

I used to think economics was a cop out major. I had no real basis for this belief. I once heard someone describe majoring in economics as "a waste of time," followed by "super easy major." Since I knew no economics majors, that description was never dislodged. (But then, seeing as how I was a physics major when I heard that statement, I was probably a snob and readily believed it. Maybe.) And now it comes to this: I decided to take two economics classes this quarter. I go to class. I sit. And I become very very stupid as the secret of economics is revealed to me, and I understand none of it. Albeit they are graduate level and I have taken none of the prerequisites. But still.

O economists whom I have wronged, I humble myself at your feet.

Monday, January 08, 2007

a prime age

I had high hopes that 2007 would be a prime number. Alas, it is not. The next prime year is 2011. I thought you should know.

Act 3

Setting: Home.

Daddy: Even if you forget most of a book, you still take things from it that you learn.
Me: Yes, but that's not true for all books. I've read lots of stupid books from which I learned nothing, except that they were stupid.
Mom: [Laughs for 5 minutes.] You should put that on your blog.

And so I have. I said a funny thing, apparently, and now I share it with you. I know that since you have read this post, your life will never be the same. Indeed, your breathing pattern may alter and your life will improve in multiple dimensions.

So long, and thanks for all the fish.