Monday, February 28, 2005

Snowing, snowing, snowing!
It's snowing outside again. I hear that the snowstorm is hitting the East Coast, and some people who are also in grad school have had a couple of days off. Luckies! Anne details the crazy weather predictions and actual weather in her blog. We don't have much on the ground here, but it's gray and cold and windy, so we might as well.

I'm knee deep in a paper for one of my classes that's due on Wednesday. It's a glorified book report, so while it's not difficult to write per se, that still doesn't make it fun. I'm rounding the end of page two of my eight pages here, and am only a sixth of the way describing the book. I also need to add in info from three journal articles. Looks like Kristin's going to be doing a lot of editing. Better that than fooling with the margins to make it longer, I suppose.

In other news, congratulations to the Todd who will soon be the proud new owner of a condo in West Bucktown!

Sunday, February 27, 2005

"Frontline" on PBS is the coolest. Their latest, "In the Company of Soldiers," is available for viewing online now. apparently it was only shown in 300 of 350 PBS networks, according to Slate, because of its language...there's a lot of swearing from what I can gather. Fuck it: show the damn thing.
Sunday mornings are kind of sad. I'm looking at a day of studying, and I have no choice about it. I have another exam tomorrow and a wretched paper due on Wednesday. But, the good news is that there are two more weeks left to this quarter. Hallelujah! And, Hillary's having an Oscar party tonight. Double Hallelujah!

Friday, February 25, 2005

When I was doing a little playing around Sitemeter, I noticed that someone tracked down my blog from typing "Kristin Baker's ass in the mirror."

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Night at the Theatah
Major thanks to Lauren who rounded up a bevy of free tickets to see "George Gershwin Alone" at the Royal George Theater tonight. The theater itself was a nice size: just small enough to be intimate, and the set design and lighting was impressive. And the play was a one-man deal with no intermission and cool to watch. I didn't know that much about George Gershwin before and probably don't know all that much now either, but it was so very cool to sit there and listen to the music. The piano-playing was phenomenal.

The coolest part was at the end when the main guy, Hershey Felder, came out and did some Gershwin sing-alongs with the audience. Since 97% of the theater was made up with people who were about three times our ages, they were pretty nutty over the material. The three old ladies in front of us liked it too. They would lean over to eachother throughout, prepare to whisper, and then speak in normal-room-voices: "He looks just like him." or "He's playing 'Summertime!'" Lauren and I had exchanged enough amused looks at this that by the end, I couldn't look at her for fear of bursting out in inappropriate chuckles.

The play was short, but the outing was perfect and just what the doctor ordered. Now I'm ready for the weekend!
Yay for Jay
"Project Runway" was awesome last night. I changed my mind about Kara Saun and started rooting for Jay to win. His stuff was hands-down cool (I liked the headphone action) and all was right in the world when he was crowned the winner. Very satisfactory.

In other news I'm using this wonky computer at the library that is whirring and has an effed up screen so everything is fuzzy. Yay for that too!

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Bhuddist carvings at Dazu. Too cool.  Posted by Hello

Working baby. Posted by Hello

This is one of my favorites of the Less Three Gorges from this past summer. It's kinda nice knowing that this is out there in the world. Posted by Hello

Don't you miss Spike?
I do. Posted by Hello
It's my morning to putz around at home before heading into a meeting and class. I don't have much to report, so I figured that I might just go through and post some of my favorite pictures.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Oh. my. gawd.
Someone in this library has some sort of music string replaying and replaying on their computer. I don't know where they are, but it's loud and it's fricking irritating. And it's another thing distracting me from doing homework.
Bad Turkey
The New York Times wrote an article about ridiculous excuses from traffic court. Awesome. You need a password to get in and while it's free, you might be lazy, so I'll show you a quick round up of my favorite parts:

It was in the mid-1980's. A man was accused of making an illegal turn. He confessed but insisted it was not his fault. He couldn't help it, he said. The poisonous airborne fallout from the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in the Soviet Union arrived in New York and hit his elbow, which was sticking out his driver-side window, and this distraction caused him to turn his car accidentally.
The defense failed. So the man produced a doctor's note saying that he had eaten bad turkey.


Stories fall into several categories. Scatological defenses (think badly timed laxatives) are common, though rarely, if ever, successful. Then there are the more banal approaches, like hidden traffic signs and broken car parts.

"Speedometer is broken? That's a nonstarter," the judge said.

One driver swore that he was certain of his speed because his fiancée happened to be eye-level with the speedometer. "Obviously not brilliant," the judge said.

(via tmn)

Monday, February 21, 2005

Talked to Christie for the first time in forever tonight, and it was great. It was a sign of how long since I'd called her because I rang the first number in my phone, and it ended up being her sister's house, where she was living six months ago. Helena answered, and I was like "CHRISTIE!"

Puzzled silence on the other end, and I realized my error. Whoops.

All the wrongs were righted though since I now have the correct number in my hot little phone and managed to talk to both Christie and her lovely husband Stefan, albeit him briefly. I feel like with school and everything I've been woefully out of touch with everyone; this is something I hope to correct in the next few weeks.
Happy Monday
No news from me.

But, I will pass along that as Des mentions in her blog, her letter to the editor got published. I love my feisty Desiree.

Sunday, February 20, 2005

How did I spend my day today?
Why, doing homework in front of the "Project Runway" marathon. woooo! My favorite is Kara Saun, and she is so going to win.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Lazy lazy Saturday mornings
I love them. I woke up late this morning, put on a pot of coffee, turned on some "Wait wait don't tell me" on NPR and sat in the sunshiny dining room and wrote some long-neglected email. I actually intend to do some studying as well.
Adam has a blog and when looking at it, I realized he linked to me (thanks, adam). I also just added a link to his blog, What the hell is wrong with people?
Getting is just right
There was an article in the Wall Street Journal a couple of days ago talking about the pain that everyone feels on Sunday nights, even if they like their jobs.

This is so right on:

To this day, Prof. Weintraub tries to squeeze as much weekend out of the weekend as he can. "I know if I sleep, the next thing I know I'll wake up and it will be Monday," he says. His favorite night of the week isn't Friday but Thursday, because then he can still anticipate the weekend before the clock has started running on it. Come to think of it, he says, his Sunday nights really begin on Saturday, when he realizes the weekend is half over and the workweek is looming.


"Rearming for the new week can produce anxiety and a sense of loss," confirms psychologist Gary Hayes of the New York management consulting firm Hayes, Brunswick & Partners. It's a result of the loss of momentary control that we gain on the weekend and then all but surrender during the workweek.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

The Kyoto Pact went into effect today
...even without the chief producer of greenhouse gases joining it, the US. Nice!

The LA Times talks about it in this article.

Wait, how did our current administration deal with it?

Bush, who campaigned before his first term on the promise that he would regulate carbon dioxide emissions from power plants, changed his mind after taking office and withdrew from the Kyoto talks in 2001, advocating voluntary steps to reduce greenhouse gases.


Actually, I cracked up at the end of the article with this part:

"It's very convenient for the U.N. leaders to have President Bush to beat up on and to claim moral superiority by calling us environmental laggards," said Myron Ebell of the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

Ebell was planning a celebration of his own tonight in Washington to mark the absence of the United States and Australia from the treaty.

I love how he's actually celebrating this. Which of you DC people are going to be joining Myron in his festivities?
Hey, good thing that it got gray again outside, my mood was improving to an unexpected degree. The sun was indeed too good to last for long.

Actually, I think that sleep is the magic elixir. I can't get over how much happier I feel with a few more solid hours under my belt. Maybe I'll learn from this. Probably not, but maybe...
Three Reasons Why I feel about a Billion Times Better than Yesterday
1. It's sunny outside today. I can see the blue skies outside the window, and I swear, it lifts my spirits. Yesterday was super gray and rainy and sucky. Apparently, weather does have an effect on me.

2. I didn't have an 8 o' clock today. 8 o'clock classes are the one reason I almost rue choosing to live in the city. Why? Because the alarm goes off at 5:45 a.m., which for me, is the butt crack of early.

3. I got nine hours of sleep last night. The night before, I got five and a half.

3a. I have time to go through my morning routine or cleaning up, sipping coffee, and checking email. Lately, that's been missing from my days, and I feel sorely cheated!

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Farewell show
Last night was Jenny's last show with her Second City touring company. It was a packed house and we were nestled in some sweet spots right next to the stage. A great show with stuff I hadn't seen before and then the improv set at the end was dedicated to Jenny: all stuff of her choosing, etc. It was excellent, but also very bittersweet since it's another reminder that she's really leaving. In less than a month. I'm still in denial, but reality insists on coming in and cracking the wall of it down, much to my consternation. Ugh, too sad.

In other news, this week is mid-term free, thankfully, but classes continue to plug along with no relief and the first part of our mammoth articulation project is due this Friday. I'm kind of over this quarter: the particular classes, the unrelenting schedule with two 8 o'clock classes and extra late labs, the way all of the assignments fell. I have higher hopes for spring quarter, but I have the highest hopes for spring break. We have like 10 days off for it and I intend to take it easy and sleep a lot. Anyway, the good news is that there's only like four weeks left to this quarter, which is pretty insane since it felt like it just started...which I suppose that it did.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Sweetest Day
Todd mentioned Sweetest Day at dinner the other night and I was totally blank. I'd never heard of it before and even accused him of making it up since those made up holidays are the kind of thing that my brain hangs on to.

Apparently, he was not making it up: it's on the third Saturday in October, and it was created/made up by this candy company owner in Ohio.

Have other people not heard of this like me? Maybe it never reached the East Coast. But, hey, anything that promotes giving me chocolate is a-ok with me.

Saturday was almost 60 and sunny. Gorgeous. The Chicago skyline in the sun. Posted by Hello

Wicker Park Traffic on Friday Posted by Hello
Happy Valentine's Day!
It's gray and rainy outside but the giraffe sculptures on the end of my street are adorned with giant red hearts. I would go out and take a picture, but laziness overwhelms.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Baby Midline Raphe!
Mirhiya had her baby girl today at 12:15 a.m. Hooray!
Weekend Report
I am DONE with the midterm hell. Thank God. It was touch and go Thursday night when I was studying for artic's exam on Friday, but I managed to eke through somehow. I haven't managed to do a whole lot of work this weekend, but it's all about the recovery. I am halfway through a lab homework that's due tomorrow, but it's tough to get through, yo.

This weekend was full of sleep and relaxing, which was what the doctor ordered. On Friday, I tagged along with Todd while he looked at a condo in the "up and coming" area of West Bucktown. The object of interest was charming and full of sunlight, close to the el, and replete with hardwood floors. Oh to be in a position to actually purchase something. Maybe I can take out a zillion more dollars in loans and get my own place. That sounds like a smashing plan. Anyway, it was fun to go along and see what the whole deal is like to shop for housing. Afterward we stuck around that general neighborhood area and walked around Wicker Park and dined on some yummy Thai food there (papaya salad--mmm) and then went over to Ukrainian Village, a neat area that I'd never seen before with some swank housing. Finally, we ended the night at Todd's favorite dive bar, The Mutiny.

Saturday I finally purchased a much needed printer and wireless router (which I'm using right now) and then we made dinner at Todd's place. He grilled some t-bone steaks which were pretty awesome, and then we watched what may perhaps be the single deliciously worst goddamn movie that I have ever seen. It outdoes "Malibooty," y'all. The name of this opus? "Black Spring Break 2: The Sequel." It's hard to put a finger on what was the worst part about the entire thing, since there were so many parts battling it out for that title: the "plot," the "acting"? Who can tell? Actually, it might actually be the production, since the entire movie was filmed with bad microphones and you could hardly hear what people were saying over the wind and background noise. We watched the entire thing. Good thing that we watched "The Warriors" afterward to cleanse the palate.

Today was another group meeting, Todd gamely hooked up all of my new computer stuff, and now I'm "working on my lab." Taking a break from it right now. How did it become Sunday night already? How did this entry become so filled with quotation marks? How did "Black Spring Break 2: The Sequel" ever get made? So many questions, so little time.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

That'll teach him to reject her advances
Laura sent me a link to this article about a woman who RIPPED off her pseudo-boyfriend's testicle...and then tried to swallow it. GAH!

The article is pretty hilarious, though:

Amanda Monti, 24, flew into a rage when Geoffrey Jones, 37, rejected her advances at the end of a house party, Liverpool Crown Court heard.

She pulled off his left testicle and tried to swallow it, before spitting it out. A friend handed it back to Mr Jones saying: "That's yours."

I was checking the homepage of the Washington Post and this was the main picture: some sort of celebration for adopted Chinese kids in Arlington. I was overcome by the perfectly round face.  Posted by Hello
You guys, I woke up at 5:15 this morning to study. That's just dumb.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Midterm Week
Ugh, I have two more midterms this week. Thursday's, Audiology, is the bear. I spent about seven hours yesterday studying, including class time (which was review, thankfully) and then will probably end up doing the same today. I did manage to take some time off to have dinner with Jenny (she made black beans and rice and pork chops--yum!) where we spent an embarassing amount of time talking about our experience with sorority rush back in...1995. Oh. my. gah. Considering the fact that it was almost ten years ago, I do remember an ungodly amount of details about it. Afterwards was the finale of The Amazing Race which was fun since they visited both China and Chicago within those two hours of programming. Boo to Freddy and Kendra winning, though. And that is seriously all that I have to report. My life this week is Dullsville!

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Is this for real?
Robin sent me this, and I'm dubious. can a kid have a six-pack??

The shower! Posted by Hello

The cake Megan made. Marshmallow eyes. Posted by Hello

The wee fuzzy fleece that we got for the baby. It's tiny! Posted by Hello

Northwestern baby gear! Posted by Hello

The momma with one of her gifts: some Jack Daniels in anticipation of when she can have a drink again.  Posted by Hello

Our present to Mirhiya. It was a crucifiction Grover. Posted by Hello

Anne and Todd. Posted by Hello

Todd and me at L&L. Behind me would have stood this Kid Rock lookalike in a wife beater and sporting what was some terrible posture. Anne lerved him the most.  Posted by Hello

Anne and me at L&L Posted by Hello

Katja's party!  Posted by Hello
The Doss is back in town: A full weekend report.
As I type this, Anne is on her way to O'Hare. She was here for a whirlwind two days, and it was just what the doctor ordered in terms of a recharge. I didn't do a lick of work while she was here, and it was nothing less than awesome.

She got into town on Thursday night, and I managed to catch up with her for half an hour before heading to bed. Friday, I had only an hour of class (!) so was home by 10:30 and pretty much had the entire day at our disposal. We hit Strange Cargo where we got some sweeeet deals ($6 sweaters, anyone? Seriously.), Ann Sather for lunch, The Gap for some necessary purchases and poked around in the shops in the neighborhood. That night we met up with Todd and then wandered over to Katja's where she had prepared dinner and offered up left over alcohol from her last party. Afterward we had some catchup time at the L&L Tavern in my neighborhood. It did indeed have a good jukebox, as was promised.

Saturday we brunched it up at Nookie's Tree (yum!) and then Anne and I took the express bus downtown to walk around the Magnificent Mile, down Michigan to Marshall Field's. That was sufficiently tuckering that we ended up coming back to my place and lazing for a few hours before heading to Evanston for Mirhiya's baby shower, thrown by Katie, Nikki, and Sarah. An excellent party, and chock full of sweet baby gift goodness. There were many things decorated with bumblebees, which I enjoyed very much. Yay for babies!

Finally, Anne and I wandered back to Wrigleyville to this bar called Wrigleyville North. Anne had seen in the Reader that they have a bluegrass band playing there Friday and Saturday so we went to see what was up. It ended up being a no-frills bar with a band that did country covers, which was still very enjoyable. There were like four people in the place, and I think that all of them were regulars, so we stood out. A rundown of our encounters:

1. The Band: There were like five or six people in the band, and to put it as concisely as possible, I will quote Anne and report that "they were all a bunch of characters." They went from young middle aged to grandfatherly, they rocked some cowboy hats and boots, mullets, grizzly adams beards, and had to be THE FRIENDLIEST BAND EVER. They would do a set and then wander down from the stage and talk to everyone in the bar. Every single one of the guys came up to our table to chat, to find out where we were from, to ask if we had any requests, and to encourage us to come back. They were responsive as well: as soon as we asked for some Willie Nelson, they did a rocking version of "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain." The keyboardist bought everyone in the bar a round of drinks. I'm serious, these guys were so awesome. Another band member wandered in while we were there and was a deadringer for Sam Elliot's cowboy in "The Big Lebowski," which Anne and I had watched earlier that day.

2. Older Guy who May or May not have been employed by the bar: This guy was barrel-chested, sported an iron gray crew cut, and a black t-shirt with some sort of wolf-scene on it (you know the kind). He also came over several times to chat and to encourage us to come back and told us at some point that if we stayed long enough he would "dance with one of (us) girls."

3. Humpty: Egg-shaped fellow sitting silently at the bar. His back was to us, but he would swivel on his stool at a rate of approximately once a minute to survey the room. You could set a clock to it.

4. Blue and Mullet (pronounced "Moulee"): A couple who appeared to be regulars who were very, very into the band and also very, very into eachother. They seemed to be good-natured good hearted people, but were fun to watch since Mullet would pat down his winged mullet throughout the night and Blue was a bit on the blowsy side. Mullet was also wearing super tight faded black jeans over his cowboy boots and Blue was wearing a low cut shirt that was, well, blue (hence the nickname). The two had disappeared for about ten minutes for a little while during the night...

Now, while all of these people were friendly, I would be negligent if I didn't talk about how much these old dudes LOVED Anne. It was fricking awesome. I could tell that they were wowed by her curls and blue eyes and couldn't get enough of it. They would come over and moon and smile It wasn't leery or gross: it was more courtly if anything. Her cup runneth over with the admiration from these gentlemen who had varying lengths of hair and varying numbers of teeth, and she couldn't have been more gracious. It was very sweet, actually.

Needless to say, it was a good night. I'm sad that the Doss has left me, but it's time to get serious about some studying. Those pesky three midterms that are waiting for me don't seem to be going away.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

EOI - Finished!
Hooray, our presentation on EOI is complete! Unfortunately, we didn't end up employing the cool slide that was created for it, but it still went off generally okay. I thought that I would feel a lot of relief, but then it just sunk in how much studying that I have to do for this exam tomorrow. I am sleepy as hell, I tell you. Pity party is still in effect, have no worries!

Plus, I went down and basically wasted an hour today trying to do this audiology lab assignment. We have to use this computer program to do a hearing test on these little computer characters. I was totally flummoxed because I kept on raising the decibels and my people wouldn't hear. They wouldn't even respond to the most powerful decibel there. It took me the entire hour to figure out that I wasn't pressing the space bar long enough. So now I have to stick around campus till 6, when the computers are finally free again. Lord help me, I am SMART.
The website for the much bally-hooed band, Darwin, was found by the todd.

Note that they have a song called "Stoled My Love." awesome!

I think that you can listen to their song "She's So Fine" which is one that we heard the other night.

From the website: "Together, the three musicians create a sound that is sure to give you an eargasam."