Monday, November 29, 2004

Last week of classes.
Two exams this week.
Two Projects due.
One quiz.
Cold starting to edge in.
Little blogging to be done for now.
Feel sorry for me?

Sunday, November 28, 2004

New York Times Article on AIDS in Southern Africa
The New York Times > International > Africa > A Hollowed Generation | Plunge in Life Expectancy: Hut by Hut, AIDS Steals Life in a Southern Africa Town
Lazy Saturday
Yesterday was the grayest, laziest day. We spent the morning lazing and then finally ventured out to go see the Art Institute. I still think this is one of the most impressive museums that I've seen. The hits just keep on coming there: it's hard to really take in everything since rooms are filled to the brim with famous and amazing stuff. It was a short three hour visit, but amazing as usual. Today, though, the weather is BEAUTIFUL.

Saturday, November 27, 2004

Friday's Activities
So yesterday, Annie, Ben and I caught the express bus downtown and wandered along the Magnificent Mile. It was my first time visiting, and I picked the right day, what with it being the busiest shopping day of the year and everything. Sweeeeeet. We didn't poke into too many places, mostly just avoiding the crowds, but we were drawn into the behemoth American Girl Store (or "American Girl Place"). That place was insane.

First of all, it was milling with people, girls with dolls in hands ready to throw down some of their parents' hard-earned cash. Second of all, on the first floor there were the historical dolls and books, so there was a modicum of educational value, but on the second floor was where the serious business was going on. There was MUCH to be purchased. An American Girl winter jacket ($86) , American girl buttons ($2), an American Girl keepsake book to remember your day at the American Girl Place ($12). But the piece de resistance was the Doll Hair Salon, where you could get your doll's hair done. One braid costs a cool $10. Dude, I am so in the wrong business apparently. Annie, Ben, and I could only look at eachother slack-jawed as we stumbled upon more and more of the products.

Having had about all we could take of the consumer madness, we then wandered around the loop and up into the Gold Coast in search of a little corner pub in which to lunch and duck in from the rain and the cold. We walked, and walked, and walked and then finally settled on this hybrid fast food/bar place which has got to be the weirdest establishment ever. Instead of soap in the women's bathroom, they had a little sampler of Palmolive, which sort of cracked me up. The place served its purpose, though, in that it was warm and it had food.

Last night we walked over the Guthries, the coolest and coziest neighborhood bar in Wrigleyville, scored a table, and proceeded to spend the next five hours playing board games. Todd joined us and we played a little Clue, Scrabble (at which I was so very poor), and then this dreadfully terrible game called "Movie Mania," which was so hilariously badly written, full of terrible grammar, misinformation, and references to straight-to-cable movies. The game was so hapless, it didn't even have a full board to play with: there was only half of it. I think it was my favorite game of the night.

Today, unfortunately, it's rainy and looks cold so we can go and see what we can find to do.

Annie and Ben. Posted by Hello

Crossing over the river. Posted by Hello

Cool bunny sculpture. Posted by Hello

Ben in the shopping crowd of the Magnificent Mile.  Posted by Hello

Friday, November 26, 2004

Annie and me, on the corner of Belmont and Clark. Posted by Hello

Annie and Ben, tiny figures across the street. I picked the exact right moment to shoot this, when they were almost directly behind a lightpost. Sweet! Posted by Hello
Annie and Ben arrived safely yesterday with no problem. I met them as they were walking from Belmont, and we spent the rest of the night preparing food and drinking copious amounts of wine. It was awesome. It was also the world's easiest Thanksgiving ever. Preparation for the feast took about an hour and eating and lounging took about six or seven hours. Today we're going to do the tourist thing and head downtown. Be prepared for more pictures.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

Happy Thanksgiving!
Annie and Ben arrive in Chicago at 1:09 today. I'm happy to report that unlike the gray monster of yesterday, the skies are blue and clear today so there shouldn't be a problem with travel. Let's hope...

I'm looking forward to the weekend of fun and good food and catching up. And maybe a few hours of study nestled in there somewhere.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

I think...
...that this may be the worst weather I've seen in Chicago so far.
Cold (by my standards)? Check.
Windy? Check.
Rainy/wet/slushy/snowy? Check.
The wind is buffeting. Weather like this would have shut down DC, but everyone here is so blase about it. It's terrible timing, though, since it IS the busiest travel day of the year. All of those poor people who have to get to the airports and then wait for their planes to head out. All of those poor people on the roads. Oh man.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Feel Good Story of the Day!

Yahoo! News - Great Animal Story...

(courtesy of Robin. Thanks, bro!)
More from McSweeneys

An Open Letter to my 22-year old self

An excerpt:

First of all, the fact that you can't beat Medal of Honour should not be taken personally. It is not a test of your worth as a man and no one will ever think you're cool for beating it, anyway. Second, you've become bitter. A lot of your friends have girlfriends and no longer exhibit the same desire to drink Southern Comfort straight from the bottle until 4 a.m. as they once did. In turn, you've begun cursing this shift in priorities as a surrender of their ability to keep it real. "Pathetic bastards," you say, "they've allowed themselves to become controlled by their girlfriends." Here's the thing, though: when your friends go home at night, they are having sex with these girlfriends. You, on the other hand, are playing three to four hours of video games, not to speak of the time spent searching the Internet for cheat codes. Don't pretend like you don't know what I'm talking about.
There's a new David Sedaris piece in the New Yorker: hurray!

Bars were out; I knew that much. I’d met my first boyfriend at a place called the Man Hole—not the sort of name that suggests fidelity. It was like meeting someone at Fisticuffs and then complaining when he turned out to be violent.

Ha! I wonder if this the the same Man Hole was used to be in my neighborhood?

Monday, November 22, 2004

For my DC friends with blogs...get added to here!DC Metro Blogmap.
Why I hate DC blog

And on his blog, he includes a link to "I love DC."

On the homepage of that blog:

I love you, DC, indeed!

[information leafblower]: The Top 40 Bands In America Today - 2004 Edition

I love this picture of Cameron Diaz attacking paparazzi. Check it out: she lost a show in the scuffle! Posted by Hello
I love how everyone cheered
From Gawker:

Freemans, tuesday night the 16th of nov. the bush twins , along with 2 massive secret service men, tried to have dinner. they were told by the maitre'd that they were full and would be for the next 4 years. upon hearing, the entire restaurant cheered and did a round of shots... it was amazing!!! [Ed: We're hearing that this is actually true.]
Praise Allah
I have my financial aid check in my hot little hands today. Let's not talk about how long it took to get to this point. No, actually, let's talk about it: I turned in my papers in July and have money in hand in mid-November. NU financial aid rocks!

One more thing
There are a lot of little dogs in my neighborhood. Today on my way home, I passed a fellow walking his dog who looked to be a Chihuahua type thing and it was decked out in a tiny black shearling coat. It's cold today!

Sunday, November 21, 2004

How awesome is Frontline?
You can watch 41 Frontline episodes online! Even more ways to put off doing my language analysis project: Score!
The Effects of Head Start waaaay down the line
The New York Times Magazine has an article about the tracking of some Head Start kids, since the program first started in the 60s. They tracked kids who both were in the program and some controls who were not, interviewing them all along the way including now, as they hit 40. Very cool:

Most remarkably, the impact of those preschool years still persists. By almost any measure we might care about -- education, income, crime, family stability -- the contrast with those who didn't attend Perry is striking. When they were 27, the preschool group scored higher on tests of literacy. Now they are in their 40's, many with children and even grandchildren of their own. Nearly twice as many have earned college degrees (one has a Ph.D.). More of them have jobs: 76 percent versus 62 percent. They are more likely to own their home, own a car and have a savings account. They are less likely to have been on welfare. They earn considerably more -- $20,800 versus $15,300 -- and that difference pushes them well above the poverty line.

Todd, Katja, and I at the birthday party. My flash takes too long, hence the dark pictures. Sorry! Posted by Hello
Happy Birthday to Katja!
Last night, a good time was had by all at Katja's birthday party. Good space was made of her studio and there must have been a bottle of wine per person. Katja also loaded her fridge with beer, so there were about 50 bottles in there: quite impressive. Also, there was an ice crusher to make caipirinhas! Amazingly, I feel like a normal person today, but it helps that the sun is shining and coffee is percolating. The best was when I got home last night and tried to call my voice mail but ended up calling my mom's cell phone 2:15 a.m. Eastern Time. Mom picked up and we had a little catch-up conversation. Sorry, mom.

Anyway, hope that today's a good day for you, Katja.

Saturday, November 20, 2004

10 Images of the Moment

10x10 / 100 Words and Pictures that Define the Time / by Jonathan J. Harris

(via tmn)

This is kind of cool. And subtle.  Posted by Hello
Lucky Clarence and Jonathan
They're on the plane right now, on their way to China. Back in 2001, Clarence and I visited Shanghai together, and during that time, spent a couple hours at the Classical Sex Museum of Shanghai. It was a nice little museum, although pretty empty, so we had the place to ourselves. I liked the part where they had a section on "Abnormal Sex" and along with the parts on bestiality and whatnot, they had a section on "The homosexuals." Something about the "the" they added cracks me up.

Anyway, Clarence just wrote:

I was doing research and discovered our beloved Chinese Sex Museum in Shanghai has decamped to a small historic village about an hour outside of the city. It's being housed in a former girls school from the early 20th century. They even have a sculpture garden. Check out the pictures!

Below is one of the pictures that made me laugh, more for its caption: "Just a stone dong." Just?!
I think I'm going to post more pictures above this one. There is too much to choose from!

"Just a stone dong." Posted by Hello

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Kevin informed me that there's a bathhouse on Halstead, which I pass every morning on the way to the el. It's not marked except for huge address numbers, but--hey--who knew? (Apparently, a lot of people, but not me.) Anyway, this morning, I was walking to the Belmont station behind a fellow who works at one of the shops nearby. He then turned to go into the door of the bathhouse, but before entering, he paused and crossed himself! Now I'm even more curious to get a gander at the place.

But the nice thing is that I ran into Kevin at the station, so we got to ride to Evanston together. It starts my morning off right. We were laughing over a story I told him about how insensitive I can be, when I happened to glance at the woman sitting next to me reading a book. She smiled and she said "That *is* funny."

Lots of el stories these days.

Anyway, the next 12 hours is going to be infused with some heavy phonetics and anatomy studies. I'm putting off the inevitable by updating the blog. Noooooo!

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Apparently, they don't only come out at night
At 12 today, I got on the red line toward Howard, on my way to class. 12 noon, this would be. About four stops into it, my spidey senses alerted me that something was up. I did a quick scan around and I was surrounded by lots of dudes and one crazy woman with Medusa hair eyeing herself in a compact mirror. Usually, the cars are occupied by a good number of middle aged women on their ways to and from their chores.

Brushing it off, I turned my attention back to my Language Development notes (we have a quiz today after all). A couple of minutes later, I sensed movement. A rapid movement that was close to groin area of the fellow across from me. I stole a glance in that direction, and sure enough, the man was pleasuring himself not five feet away. A more stoic expression there never was. Needless to say, I didn't stick around for the climax, but switched cars at the next station stop.

12 noon on a Wednesday, y'all. That's ballsy. Hee.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

First of all,

Happy Birthday, Claro! 28 is going to suit you so well. And you get to celebrate with some dumplings and Peking duck in a few short days, lucky boy.

Second of all,

Quelle hassle of a day. Computer issues, broken bag latches, and pain in the ass stuff like that. Plus, what may have been the longest day in the history of class days. Glad to be home now.

Monday, November 15, 2004

Weirdest Show Ever
So I went to bed early last night after tackling some scintillating Stats reading (ANOVA tests in the house!). Before I did, I turned on the tv as I was getting ready and stumbled upon what might be the Oddest Program In the World. Has anyone seen that show "Cheaters"? The premise is that people contact the show if they think that their significant other is stepping out. Then the Cheaters detective service, or whatever they are, tail the suspect for a few days and gather what they can. Finally, they show the tapes to the wronged person, and tag along with aforementioned wrong person when they go and bust their cheating partner!

In the episode that I was watching last night (I was seriously standing there in the middle of the room, transfixed), a 24 year old nurse thought that her musician, deadbeat boyfriend was dillydallying elsewhere. Sure enough he was (with her old roommate, btw! double betrayal!). I loved when Cheaters would fuzz out all of the hanky panky, which would be necessary since they had the nurse plant a hidden camera in the apartment. But, the best was when the nurse went and confronted the bfriend and the ex roommate in the act: there were seriously like twenty crew people with her. They were all trying to shush eachother as they filed up the stairs. You guys, this show was so fricking terrible (and kind of great because of it).

So I found the website so I could link to it, and discovered that they also offer a dating service. awesome. AND there's Cheaters gear that you can purchase. I want to get their t-shirt. On the front is the Cheaters logo, and on the back it reads: "...encouraging the renewal of temperance and virtue..."
Last night Pam, Rachel, and Amie were over and we sat in the living room as dusk hit Chicago shooting the shit, if you will. We were laughing over the idea of Jenny putting on some pumps to wear with her sweatshirted outfit to dinner that night. We started talking about that commercial for Easy Spirit shoes from the 80s (right?) that featured a women's basketball game where all of the players wore Easy Spirit pumps. Remember that?

I commented that that would make a great Halloween costume for next year, to be one of those players. Amie then exclaimed that some of her colleagues at the Chicago Tribune actually did that exact thing a few years back. They had enough people for BOTH teams. She said that it was great when they were all together in a group, but when one was separated and wandering the halls by herself, decked out in her 80s basketball uniform and pumps (I love that word) people were like "what the eff are you supposed to be?"


Saturday, November 13, 2004

Making me homesick
Anne posted some DC photos on her blog. Gravelly Point and the Washington Monument, but my favorite is the one that she coins the "Amelie" photo--vibrant shot of the Potomac and the Capitol in the background. Awwww. Today actually makes it exactly a month till I'm back for winter break.
The (Loud) Sweater Project

Buried Lede The KFS Sweater Project

Some guy dug up his old sweaters from the 80s and modeled them. One word: priceless. Make sure you look at the cardigans, but those are the BEST.

Note: doesn't this guy look like Michael J. Fox?

(via popculturejunkmail)
In Response to the Sorry Everbody web site
It's actually kind of hilarious.

Lisa posted a couple of the hott photos on her site, along with her most excellent, pity commentary.
(via Wonkette)
Feeling kinda low today?
Automatic Flatterer

(via tmn)
How to Manage your Entourage, courtesy of Slate.
When Entourages Attack - The Slate guide to managing your posse. By Josh�Levin

Since Slate is extraordinarily popular with the entourage-having-rapper demographic, we've compiled a list of entourage best practices: tips on how to make your entourage's violent impulses work for you. Maybe you'll never get your security team to teach underprivileged kids how to read, but with a little know-how and planning, you can at least stay out of the clink.

...Obviously, there will be moments when you won't care to have your honor defended. If you want to predict when your entourage will start a fight, you have to keep an eye on your surroundings. Natural light tends to have a calming effect on the entourage, which can become agitated and restless at night.

I tried to find an image of this for you
More from the Reader. In this week's edition, they have a listing for a book reading by Nigella Lawson, everyone's favorite pretty British cooking show hostess. In the photo they have her wearing this fetching blue shirt that reads "English MUFFIN." However, the way the photo is cropped, the "IN" is left off of "muffin." Nice!

Ha! Posted by Hello
Best story of the morning
Okay, so after the anatomy/crime class, I heard the following story, which fricking slayed me. Seriously, I was on the Pre-cor machine at the gym cracking up about it, it was so wrong. Todd was telling about how he was going to see a band called Shooting Blanks play. In doing so, he also added that last year, they were playing at a bar in Evanston, and someone has switched the 'N' in there for a 'C,' listing them as the very unfortunate, very wrong "Shooting Blacks." Oh my GOD.

The band's email about it:

It has been brought to my attention that The Reader in Chicago has been advertising our shows this weekend as "Shooting Blacks". I would like to formally announce that SHOOTING BLANKS does NOT endorse firing guns at African Americans........but SHOOTING BLANKS does, however, find this typo to be very funny,so pick up a copy of The Reader if you get a chance. So, to sum up - we don't hate black people, we do hate our drummer dan, and we hope to see you at our shows this weekend.

(Thanks to Todd for the material.)

Just Like CourtTV
Yesterday, we had our most interesting Anatomy class yet. See, our professor was giving his lecture on phonations and the vocal folds (wooooooo!), and to help illustrate a point about the ability to speak under duress, he told us about this case in which he served as an expert witness.

The woman had had her throat cut, and the victim's mother stated that when she found her, the victim's dying words were "Michelle did it." Michelle was promptly and quickly convicted and sent to the slammer (check out my lingo, I watched a lot of "Homocide" episodes last night). Anyway, the case was brought back into a federal court, and our professor was brought in as the expert: he argued that since the victim's throat was cut in such a way, her epiglottis was all wonky, and important nerves were cut, and it would have been impossible for her to vocalize. He had all of his overheads with him to show the judge as well. He helped get Michelle a not-as-guilty in federal court, but it turns out that it was brought back to state court and she was convicted all over again.

Even though our professor had only meant to use the story as a point of illustration, we in the class jumped on it. We peppered him with questions about the case: Who were the players? How old were they? What happened exactly? It was the best thing to ever happen in Anatomy, as far as I was concerned.

Apparently, the case was pretty famous--they covered it on CourtTV and they even made a tv movie out of it! As he told more details about the background, it sounds as if this Michelle character was kind of sketchy to begin with, so don't feel too bad about her getting sent to the Big House. I don't.

And that is what I learned in class yesterday.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Clarence just sent a link to a website that details Chinese streetfood--with pictures!

Oh my Gah.

My all time favorite is the ji dan bing, or eggs in a pancake. When I arrived in Beijing, I couldn't do anything else, but Clarence wrote me out directions on how to order one of those. If there was a stall that sold them here....trouble.
First Message of the Morning

hey kristin,

this is going to seem really random, but why is it that every time i see that ad for 'the grudge' with the little kid who meows, it reminds me of you?



Wednesday, November 10, 2004

And now a message from my daytime activities
Today in Language Development we had a woman come in and speak on Nicaraguan Sign Language, this brand new language that is being developed as I type this. See what happened was that it used to be that the deaf in Nicaragua rarely had deaf relatives and didn't have access to a signed language. So, all of these kids growing up in hearing households would develop their own individual "home signs" with which they could communicate with their families. It was in the 70s that the country started schools for the deaf. No sign was taught in the classrooms, but the deaf attendees finally had access to other deaf students. During the non-class time, all of these kids got together and developed their own signed language, Nicaraguan Sign Language.

Let me repeat that: these people developed their own language. Whereas I complain about having to do my laundry. Perspective.

Anyway, what's cool about this is that with every generation of school kids that come in, the language develops a bit more and becomes a bit more complex. So, while the first round of speakers signed relatively slowly and basically, the younger generation--who learned their sign from the older generation--took it to another level and finally the generation that's in there right now are making it even more complex and efficient. Cool, huh?

What was the coolest was that we were shown clips of some people home-signing, and our speaker also expanded on the different variations of "man" and "woman" in home signs. Some kids would motion a moustache to describe a man, some kids mimic big bosoms to describe a woman. But the best was that one girl, apparently, pointed a finger to communicate "man," and made a little diamond shape with her hands to signify "woman." How very biological!
Sorry Everybody
Have you seen this website that posts photos of people sending their apologies to the rest of the world over the election results? It's awesome. Anne pointed me out to this page, where one guy is wearing a Hello Kitty hat. Sweet: I like him all the more!

Interestingly, Jenny tried to show this to me last night and it wouldn't come up for us. All we got was some bobo ads website, whereas Anne was able to access it. Hmmm.

Regardless, we get it now, and that's all that matters. Check it out!

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

I finished with my anatomy exam. I couldn't remember the word "recurrent" of Recurrent Laryngeal Nerve," but that's all I can really complain about right now. As long as I did better than last time is all...

And now I finally have the time to post election results diatribes. Thank God.
In a similar vein to the entry down below
The New Yorker talks about four more years with Bush:

Here in the bluest borough of the bluest city of the bluest state in all our red-white-and-blue American Union, it has not been a happy week. A cocktail of emotions was being felt in these parts after last week’s Presidential election, and the most potent ingredient was sadness. We’ve got the blues, and we’ve got ’em bad....

Along with the sadness, there is puzzlement. Incumbents, especially in time of war, have a built-in advantage. But this incumbent had led the country into a war, the war in Iraq, that half the public had come to see as a mistake, and had led the country down what more than half the public saw, in pollster’s shorthand, as “the wrong track.” The election’s outcome defies logic, and perhaps that is the point. The early analyses credited Bush’s victory to religious conservatives, particularly those in the evangelical movement. In voting for Bush, as eighty per cent of them did, many of these formerly nonvoting white evangelicals are remaining true to their unworldliness. In voting for a party that wants to tax work rather than wealth, that scorns thrift, that sees the natural world not as a common inheritance but as an object of exploitation, and that equates economic inequality with economic vitality, they have voted against their own material (and, some might imagine, spiritual) well-being.

Along with the sadness and the puzzlement, there is apprehension. Here in the big coastal cities, we have reason to fear for the immediate safety of our lives and our families—more reason, it must be said, than have the residents of the “heartland,” to which the per-capita bulk of “homeland security” resources, along with extra electoral votes, are distributed. It was deep-blue New York (which went three to one for Kerry) and deep-blue Washington, D.C. (nine to one Kerry), that were, and presumably remain, Al Qaeda’s targets of choice. In the heartland, it is claimed, some view the coastal cities as faintly un-American. The terrorists do not agree. They see us as the very essence—the heart, if you like—of America.

Amen! (also, how hilariously blue is DC! 9:1 Kerry! I wonder how the Whitehouse service staff voted overall?)

Let those red states do their thing
I like this blog's entry about the red and blue states and the issues on which they vote.

Red state voters voted on two key issues: terrorism, and gay marriage. Which is funny, since there have been no terrorist attacks in any red states, and there have been no gay marriages in any red states. Red state voters therefore seem mostly concerned with preventing terrorist attacks and gay marriages in blue states....

On top of all that, a common refrain heard these days is that Democrats are viewed as patronizing and condescending towards red state voters -- that Democrats keep insisting that they know what's best for red state voters, and that red state voters resent that.
So be it. From here on out, blue state voters should simply stop caring about what happens to red state voters. Send your kids to fight and die in Iraq, carry a larger part of the tax burden, go without health insurance, get raped by Uncle Jimmy Bob and be required to carry the baby to term, give up on educating your kids to live in the modern world, and get all of your social services from your church. Further, stop
sucking on the federal teat by taking more in federal tax dollars and subsidies than you pay in. You'll get exactly what you deserve, and we in the blue states will be just fine.

Btw, I love the name of this blog and it's tag:
As in, I deeply resent how this administration makes me feel like a nutbar conspiracy theorist.


Grabbing a nap
Have you guys seen these photos of Japanese businessmen grabbing some shut-eye at various points in the day at various locations? Those dudes look tired!

Monday, November 08, 2004

I know..
..I've posted this before, but I LOVE this online story by Derek Kirk, "Same Difference." It's my anatomy break tonight, and it should be yours as well.
Studying now, and will be for the next 15 hours....
This Website is certified 29% Evil
That's what the website The Germatriculator tells me, anyway. You go there, enter your website address, and they do something with mathematical calculations to figure out how evil/good you are. Here's my exact reading. Any other readings to share out there? Someone want to do the FOX news site?
(via tmn)

Sunday, November 07, 2004

I went last night, with Todd, to see a three band bill at the Double Door in Wicker Park. What a cool club: it's got enormously high ceilings, a chill upstairs hangout, and a large hang out area downstairs. Apparently, it's also where they filmed the club scenes in the movie "High Fidelity."The final band, the Hot Snakes, is who we had gone to see and they were quite impressive (Bill: I was going to try to get you some merch, but I was lacking of enough cash--it's the thought that counts, right?). Anyway, it was a fun night.

I rocked out a bit too hard last night, though, and today I pay for my fun. I also have to spend the entire day planted at a table studying for the dreaded anatomy mid-term on Tuesday. Hey, at least it's gorgeous out...and I can look out the window at it!

Saturday, November 06, 2004

The title that Jenny gave to a CD mix that she copied for me yesterday
Kristin + Anatomy = TLA
So true...

Megan and her caterpillar cake at the Dessert Stop. Posted by Hello

Look at the last line! Posted by Hello

Laura and her "Save the Chidren" design. Posted by Hello
Progressive Party
Last night I stuck around Evanston and attended a dinner party progressive hosted by three different apartments, all within a block of one another. First stop was Laura's, for appetizers; next was Katie, Nikki, and Sarah for the main course (in their ENORMOUS apartment); and finally was Megan's place for cake and ice cream. It was of course a lot of fun, as anything involving a lot of food and wine in a laid back atmosphere and good company can be. By 11:30, though, I was dead to the world.

Some interesting facts that I picked up last night:

1. Laura designed a famous "Save the Children" design when she was 11. She had the popcorn tin and a scarf of it. I'm sure you've seen the design before, and I'm going to post the picture above. How cool is that, though?

2. Lauren's grandmother had stolen the heart of Michael Bolton's father when she was younger, but had apparently opted against him. However, as Lauren said, if she had chosen him, there would be no Lauren and there would be no Michael Bolton (and no catalogue of his to celebrate).

3. Megan's great-grandfather was the official wheelchair pusher of FDR. Apparently, they had a character of his same name in the movie, "Pearl Harbor," except the character was black, which Megan's great grandfather was not.

4. Hilary's mom produced the first few seasons of "Reading Rainbow." She's met Lavar Burton. Also, many of the early characters were named "Hilary," since at the time she had just been born and was the first new baby in the office.

I was so wowed by these stories, but all I had to offer was: "My friend, Grace, ran into Emmanuel Lewis on the street once!" I think that was pretty impressive, though.

Anyway, photo of most of the group below at the first stop, Laura's place. More pictures above.

First stop of the SLP MA dinner party progressive. Posted by Hello

Friday, November 05, 2004

There's a new Jean Teasdale column in this week's Onion


Diabetes is no laughing matter, kids. (I'm not accusing you of laughing at diabetes—I'm just saying.)
Grown-up Playgrounds? Yes, please
Jan Wong lists ten ways that China's got the West beat in terms of efficiency in the Globe and Mail.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Pho Asian
Yay! My favorite Desiree has started up her blog, Pho Asian. Visit and be apprised of political goings-on and whatnot.
Anatomy, let my people go
Anyone want to learn more about the sternohyoid muscle and the other infrahyoid muscles? How about the intrinsic laryngeal muscles? Because I've got about 300 pages of notes if you're interested. Don't all email me at once, please: there will be more than enough to go around. We have a quiz tomorrow and then another mid-term on Tuesday which will cover a lot more material. Batten down the hatches, people, since there will be much grousing done before then.
Need a distraction today? Or, "How the New Yorker Entertains"
Read "Breakup Stories" by Jonathan Franzen.

Or read their complete archive of the election coverage (you know, in case yesterday's pain wasn't enough). It's good stuff, though.
Moving On
So, this morning was sweeeet in that I stepped out of the house, and realized that there was a steady drizzle coming down. I had also lost my umbrella along the way (of course), so plodded my daily walk as usual with no rain gear. I arrived at school completely soaked of course, but no worse for the wear, really. But, rain ain't fun unless you're inside staring out.

In the meantime, check out photos of the Simpsons house in Las Vegas! (via tmn)

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

So today was a major bummer of a day. Everyone I talked to was down in a major way, which Anne mentions in her blog today. James also detailed the five stages of grief quite nicely. I spent the afternoon at school, which worked for distraction purposes. Exam tomorrow, though, in phonetics. I can't wait till this week is over...and the next four years as well, now that I think about it.
Wha- Happened?
Seriously, can someone let me know? I had turned off the tv last night in order to turn my attention to studies. This morning I hopped out of bed, and pulled on the closest scrubby clothes that I can find, which turned out to be an all-black outfit, and then turned on the tv. How apropos the mourning black is, yo. I'm pretty bummed out right now. Okay, so all is not yet lost, but's pretty close.

Distraction? How about this article about how "bloodsucking" monkeys descended on 300 children at a temple in India? That's pretty evocative.

And on a somewhat lighter note, Harper's Magazine, has a "Reader's Guide to Expatriating."
(via tmn)

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Salon has a guide to the election night. Warning: if you click, I'm not sure if it's subscriber-only.
Two Things

1. I did a study today for a voice study that our anatomy professor is conducting. My professor was faciliating mine so we chatted a little bit. I introduced myself and told him what I was studying, and then he asked me if I were a freshman or a sophomore. How hilarious is that? I had to tell him that not only was I a Masters student, but I am almost 28. Anyway, the study was easy and I earned $10! That money is burning a hole in my pocket.

2. Major thanks to Jenny who made an "Election Day Mix" this morning to commemorate our voting experience. It was waiting on the coffee table when I got home. Woo! Number one song on the cd? "Straight up"!

Proud voter #2 from Apt 2E. I'm an Illinois voter now. This was at approximately 6:40 this morning, pre-coffee. Posted by Hello

Proud voter #1 from Apartment 2E. Check out the patriotic colors! Jenny's wearing her voting pants. Posted by Hello
Vote or DIE!
(Kevin and I laughed on the train last night at the hilarious urgency of "Vote or die!" as a slogan. Don't get me wrong, it's important to vote, but is dying really the only option if you don't do it?)

Anyway, this morning, Jenny and I tumbled out of bed at 10 to 6, and shimmied over to our local polling place. We got there by six, stood in line for about 25 minutes, and were out of there by 6:40. Not bad, and with enough time leftover to reward ourselves with coffee from Einstein's. We were both sad to note that there were no "I Voted Today" stickers distributed afterward, so Jenny said that she might attach her ballot receipt to her shirt, which I love. I took a couple photos of each of us proudly holding up our registration cards, and I'll have to post them tonight.

There was a short line this morning, but I think that the place will be a completely melee when it's after five. Now I can just go home, and plant myself in front of the news, which will be All-Election-Allthetime!
I saw Jenny and Brendan's tour group perform, courtesy of their guest tickets, along with Kevin, Jessica, and Chris. We had nice, central, rail seats, and enjoyed the show while sipping our cheap beer. The performers were seamless, as usual, and I enjoyed the show.

However, there was a group that was sitting in the audience that was the definition of obnoxious. They were all barrel-chested and loud and predominantly middle-aged men. There were a couple of women present, one of whom had a mean rat tail. I mean, this rat-tail had to be like a foot long, at least, and the rest of her hair was all spiky and streaked, not unlike a character in "CATS," as I think Chris pointed out.

Anyway, this group...apparently they were in town for some sort of class and they are all in the electronics field, presumably at the same company.

What they didn't find funny: any sly commentary on politics or the current Presidency. In fact, if there was any wayward comment about Bush or Cheney, they all sat stone-faced and crossed-armed. Okay, their perogative...


What they did find funny: Any stupid-ass, tired sex joke. Suggestions that they yelled out during Improv sets throughout the night included "morning wood," "porno," "priest and altar boy" and something called "cactus-ass," I think. It was "cactus-something." Jenny's group gamely took their cactus suggestion, even though puzzled as to what it meant. Of course it meant something dirty, because every time the cast uttered the words, the electronics group would burst into hoots and high-fives. I'm serious: HIGH FIVES. I kind of hated them (if you can't already tell).

But the worst was that at one point, this (tipsy) couple that was setting at another table started making out heavily, and some of the oafs in this electronics group stood up, hollered, cheered and "woo!-ed" in response. Oh my gah.

The best is what Kevin said about it: "I'm turning Amish so I don't have to use electricity anymore and support these people and their livelihoods."

Monday, November 01, 2004

Straight Up
Danger, Will Robinson, Danger! Jenny showed me the iTunes program on her computer this afternoon. And how piece-of-cake-just-99cents-no-big-deal-easy it is to download songs on a whim. Whatever songs suit your fancy, at whatever time. We talked about how very dangerous this whole deal might be in the form of mounting iTunes costs, impulse iTune purchases, and drunken iTunes scouting after a night out. Jenny showed me the two songs that she downloaded today, one of which is the esteemed "Living on a Prayer," which she felt the need to buy after hearing it played on Friday night.

The following coversation occured after this...

Kristin: Girl, you're so going to fall prey to the power of suggestion. One day you'll come home and be like "I've GOT to have Paula Abdul's 'Straight Up' or I can't live in peace!"

Jenny: Just hearing you mention it makes me want to buy it right now.

Blueco Raingear: Jenny posing with her Second City rain outfit. Posted by Hello