Archive for the ‘Life and Times’ Category

It’s like Where’s Waldo, except with a MacBook. Betcha can’t find it.

Give up? Ok, ok, it’s the tall red-head. Nice, huh?

According to Casey, these were just released today and he’d already ordered mine so it arrived this morning. Most Excellent. Now my laptop won’t feel so out of place among its ancestors.

Go, buy yourself a new BookBook. It’s rad.


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So, I’m wondering if I should post some pictures of people I’ve drawn to give you all a little confidence in sending me your photos…thoughts? I mean, sure, you run the risk of receiving balloon-head pictographs in the style of every 4-year-old you’ve ever known, but what’s life without a little risk, am I right?

Ok, I’ll photograph a few of my things, stick ’em up here as kind of a good-faith sharing of what I can do while I await your good-faith sharing of your photographs. Deal? Yes. Ok good.

Meanwhile, it’s 1:15 in the afternoon and I’m still in jammies. I didn’t feel great when I woke up. Hadn’t slept well, and my neck and eyeballs ached. Obviously I want to shower, but we’re still waiting for the plumber guy to come back today and replace the weak thermo-coupling so that our water can heat up sufficiently. Yesterday the death-trap situation was remedied quickly but at nearly twice the originally quoted price. But they didn’t have the correct part to fix the thermo-couple (coupling? coupler? WTF is the right word there?). So, we have lukewarm water (because if the pilot is up too high—which is to say, hot enough to take a decent shower—it trips a sensor and shuts down), but we’re not currently going to die in our sleep of carbon monoxide poisoning, which is, as you may suspect, an awesome state of affairs.

I’m trying hard to train myself to write everyday. Whether writing on here, or playing around with one of my story ideas, or whatever, my brain needs the daily exercise because when I don’t, every synapse in there rebels and I’m left thinking about………….

See. That right there. That happens when I’m not daily challenging my brain to organize thoughts, connect them, say them better, make them funny or meaningful to something larger. I go blank. I couldn’t think of anything funny or even ordinary or ANYTHING AT ALL to describe this globulous mental atrophy. (And, I know. Globulous is entirely the wrong word, but that’s the sound of word that I want right there and if I was daily working out my brain, I’d be agile enough to find the word that sounds like that that means what I want it to mean. But I’m leaving the wrong word there because it sounds gross and gross is what I’m going for.)

This reminds me of Benjamin Franklin. He complains of exactly this suffering in part one of his autobiography, which I’m reading for my American Lit. class. I have wanted to read it anyway, so I’m happy to do it now. So far, this is the best writing I’ve encountered in all the colonial and pre-colonial American literature we’ve read. Old Franklin is a funny, ironic, and intelligent guy. And he’s bent on improving himself in every activity he pursues. So it’s cool to be reading him now; it’s like inspiration for me to continue on in diligence the things I’m trying to improve: writing, art, life, et al. Go read Ben Franklin; he’ll make you want to be a better citizen.

I’m at a loss as to wrapping this up today…it’s that mental atrophy taking over. This will get better. I will get better. Send me pictures so I can draw you.

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Hrm. Ok.

One week and a final in algebra then I’m done with math. I’m so tired of it, I can’t even manage to be clever or quippy. I just need it to end. I might be able to secure a B. It’ll screw the GPA, but I’ll live if it means no more computation classes. Ugh.

Final fiction class this Tuesday. And as sad as it makes me to say, I can’t be done with that soon enough either. I didn’t learn a lot about fiction writing on the whole. I learned a few things about myself as a writer, so I imagine that’s helpful. Also, I’ve managed to complete two short stories. That’s a lot for me because I always find myself losing momentum about  two-thirds of the way through and never completing anything. It’s discouraging.

My stories have yet to be workshopped in class and I was looking forward to getting some feedback other than the teacher’s. I hope we’ll get to it this week, but our teacher isn’t great at time management, so we’ll see.

I’m going to have to wait a whole term to take Intermediate Fiction. The class is closed for next term so I’m taking some literature instead. And a sociology class on sex. Too bad there’s not a lab component. 🙂 (Relax, Casey.)

Life on the whole has been somewhat messy these last months, but recently there’s noticeable improvement, so I’ll just chalk it up to growing pains. In the big life picture, it will only be a blip anyway.

Casey’s consulting business is doing better than either of us expected, I think. He’s impressing the shit out of just about everyone. The kids are still mostly cute, when they’re not being annoying. I have a new iFlip video camera so I plan on learning how to post videos of funny kid stuff here.

I dragged a heavy desk upstairs from the dining room all by myself today and now I feel like an Amazon Woman.

We’re trying to buy our car (we originally leased it and the lease was up a few months ago) but we’re being parried at every turn. Fucking car companies.

Nothing especially earth shattering to report. Earth is still turning, we’re all still breathing in and out every day.

Evelina plans on being the first person on Mars. She has diagrams and blueprint mock-ups of the vessel required to take her there. Her own design. She wants us to send them to NASA so that they can begin work on them now with the hopes that it will be perfected and space-worthy by the time she’s done becoming an astronaut. I have no doubt whatsoever in her imminent success.

Christmas is fast approaching and I’m far from the spirit of it. It’s unusual for me. I’ve never been a scrooge and every year I chide Casey on his lack of participation and holiday cheer. But this year, I’m just not feeling it. Perhaps once we’ve bought our tree and decorated I’ll be more into it.

I have some ideas for some upcoming posts; I just hope I have the time to stick with it. And the energy. We’ll see.

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My three-year-old just yelled down the stairs, “It’s impossible to wipe my own butt!”
God forbid I suggest such a thing.

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Floor Décor

Casey and I made a deal when we first moved into our “new” house. (I say it like that because it’s almost two years here, and still I’m calling it our new house.) The deal was that we’d remodel the kitchen when the floor tiles started coming off. Strange to you, perhaps, but after moving from our newly remodeled “old” kitchen into the “new” outdated kitchen, I was a little sad. (And still most of our Tupperware remains in boxes in the basement because there is no room in the inn.) This also mattered because the floor in our new kitchen was exactly like the old kitchen floor (before remodeling) in our old house. It was like going back in time. We consoled ourselves with phrases like, “But this house is way better than the money pit dung heap we miraculously inhabited before.” And, “When we remodel, this will be our dream kitchen.” (Instead of being simply tolerable and out of necessity as before.)
We lived in our new house for a month when floor tiles began dislodging and corners lifted and crunched when you stepped on them leaving a crumble of tile and powdery glue bits. “Well,” we shrugged “the house is still way better than the mold-infested rat trap we left.”
Now, the decrepit floor tiles in my “new” kitchen are peeling off at an alarming rate. We ignored this for awhile, even leaving the dislodged tiles in their places in hopes of faking out all the rest – or something. I finally embraced the degeneration about a week ago and inspected every tile. If it was loose, I pried it off. It’s funny that it’s mostly the white tiles that come off or break and the black ones remain adhered and whole. So the floor is still a patchwork; it’s just beige and black instead of white and black. Anyway, we’re in no position to remodel yet, so with deep affection for my crumbling kitchen, I’ve decided to cover it’s blemishes until we can afford the full overhaul.
Tonight’s makeup included a quote from Kerouac’s On The Road: The Original Scroll and my crayon interpretation of van Gogh’s Starry Night.
And David desperately needing to whine while I create.

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Out of Hand

This obsession with Polyvore is getting out of control. I have made two more cheesy valentines that I haven’t even posted on here (yet). I fear for my sanity and everyone else’s aesthetic sense.
On the other hand, it’s the easiest tool (analog or digital) I’ve ever used to help create something. So it’s cathartic in that “I have things in my brain that need to come out” kind of way and it’s immediately gratifying and it’s not messy. All favorable.
Side Effects: May become habit forming. May induce cheesy, greeting card style “prose.” May lead to incompletion of meals, homework, housework, and sleep.
Disclaimer: Check with your loved ones to find out if Polyvore is right for you.

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I am startled by my level of emotion in response to this inauguration day. I’m making my kids watch the coverage of this because of its historical significance. I want them to associate their childhood with a black president. And not just because he’s black but because of the way it changes our mindsets and expectations to have a significant minority represented in such a major way. It makes the world feel conquerable.
To quote Steven Spielberg who was just briefly interviewed in DC, “I want my kids to rub up against history.” So do I. My kids are still young, and providing Obama remains in office for two terms, they will be nearly old enough to appreciate the significance of being part of the youngest generation ushering in our first black president.
I realize I have friends and family who are less than enthusiastic about today’s events, but I hope despite differing politics (or ambivalence) we can all recognize that perhaps our country is growing up a bit and that’s demonstrated through our election of Barack Obama. I certainly don’t look at Obama like the second coming of Christ the way some people have, nevertheless, this is a momentous occasion and I’m excited.

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