Sunday, January 29, 2006

Sunday Rainy Sunday
It's rainy out, but it's warm! It's like 50 today. I'm locking myself to my desk all afternoon. It's been a good weekend, though. Last night we went to go and see The Life and Times at the Empty Bottle and they were pretty awesome and before that we had yummy bbq at Smoke Daddy. A perfect night out, in my humble opinion!

In other news, I've been vulnerable to being waylaid by various movies that are playing on tv. I sat down to eat my lunch today before doing some work and then ended up watching an hour of "Say Anything." I love Lloyd Dobler.

And that's all that I've got, sadly. So in lieu of anything interesting going on in my life, I'm going to post an email that Todd sent me on Friday. He gets off of work before noon on Fridays and will usually spend the afternoons napping on his big, comfy couch. Here's the message in its entirety; it totally cracked me up when I read it at school.


Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2006 13:32:47
Subject Line: oh no he di'int!

I have to tell you about how awesome this one thing was on Maury just now.

They had a woman and her longtime boyfriend on the show for their 3rd appearance, and they explained that here were how the first two appearances went down:

-The first time, the woman had just given birth to their first baby, and he claimed it wasn't his and that she was lying and cheating on him. She took a lie detector test and they did a paternity test, and they proved that she never cheated on him and that the baby was in fact his baby.
-The second time, she had just given birth to their second kid, and he was claiming again that she was lying and cheating on him and that the baby was not his. In addition, he was claiming that she was drugging him at night to make him sleep very heavy so that she could go out and f*** around on him with men in his family. Whenever she would get out of bed in the middle of the night to feed the baby or go to the bathroom, he would then claim that she was f***ing dudes in the hallway behind his back. She took lie detector tests and they did a paternity test, and they found that she was telling the truth about never having slept around on him, and that the second baby was also his.

Miraculously, they stayed together after this.

So they came back on the show for the third time, because she says that she heard he was f***ing some woman in their home on a day that she was in the hospital with their sick child, frantically trying to get a hold of him. He said this was not true, and that other than the two times that he had cheated on her that he had already told her about (previous to them ever going on Maury), he has never cheated on her. She was also pretty sure that he had cheated on her a bunch of other times because of all of the accusing he had done to her. He took a lie detector test to "set the record straight."

The results of the lie detector test were that he had in fact cheated on her, with over 10 women, some of which were prostitutes that he had paid for sex.

When faced with his lies and indiscretions, he told Maury that he loved his girlfriend to death and was sorry, and wished he could get a "second chance."


There are so many things that I love about this message, but what I love the most is that he sat down and wrote it before the show was even over, since Maury ends at 2.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Woo, woo, WOOOO! Midterms are upon us once again. Next week proves to be one of the best *ever* with two mid terms, and one final exam and a paper/presentation on corticobasal degeneration for our half-quarter class. Man, life so rocks right now, I can barely stand it. Today I was growling with my bad mood, but I managed to find time to work out which helped alleviate much of the crankies. I'm hoping that this weekend also finds time for some down time besides studying/writing/organizing. And that is seriously all that I have to share, which is tres triste.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Monday...the saddest day of the week.
But, the good news is that Monday's officially over. Today was busy with lots of reports due, and I managed to finish them this weekend *and* do fun stuff as well (not that typing out reports isn't like the most funnest thing ever), so that was successful.

I got to see Brendan on Friday night, as he was stopping in town on his way to Denver, and that was awesome. The next day, Todd and I went out to lunch with his old roommates who have moved to Denver (Hot Doug's! We got there at 3:52, right before it closed and got in there just in time), and it was cool to hang out with Jackie and Rob again. And then that night I was pious and stayed home to write while Todd went to see some bands play, but then joined him later to go over to have wine and enjoy Trader Joe's vittles with Kiley and Steve. So, I was pleased with the amount of people we got to see this weekend.

What else? Oh, a funny moment during one of our diagnostic sessions this morning. While the 4-year old was standing there stacking plastic bowling pins for an activity, one of our supervisor's singing Elmos started going off from within the cabinet. It was actually startling and freaky until we figured out what was going on. The dad who was there was hilarious, though, since this is what he dryly said: "I think Elmo's trying to come out of the closet there."

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Voice overuse
That's what one does to oneself when you do all day school screenings like I did today. I still like them (no planning, no reports, easy clinical hours!), but I come home and I'm completely wiped out. I got home about an hour ago and am allowing myself a couple of hours to decompress and to eat some dinner and drink some non-soda and non-coffee in the form of herbal tea and then it's back to the grindstone. My first diagnostic report's draft is due on Monday along with our mid-quarter reports (already!), so I'm trying to get cracking on them now when I'm not too rushed and/or frazzled over the whole deal.

On another note, I'm watching tv right now and the commercial I totally hate is on. Anyone seen that stupid Kraft Cheese Crumbles commercial where they use EMF's "Unbelievable," but now..."Crumb-balievable?" It's not quite so lame as to be amusing to me, just lame enough to really offend me.
Long, long, long overdue
I've been meaning to add Jackie's sweet blog about her adventures in Denver to this webpage and it's finally on! She's an excellent graphic designer so you can see that all over her photos and stuff.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Destined for Success...and Pessimism
Apparently babies born in the winter tend to be bigger, brighter, and more pessimistic than their summer counterparts, according to this article.

Compared to summer births, those born in winter were significantly longer at birth, and were heavier, taller and had larger head circumference at age seven. They also had higher scores in a series of intelligence exercises. By the age of seven, winter- and spring-born children were 210g heavier, 0.19cm taller, and had head circumferences significantly larger than summer and autumn-born children. The results also show that babies born in the winter were the longest, while winter- and spring-borns weighed the most at the age of seven and were also the tallest.

Monday, January 16, 2006

I should be studying for dementia right now
...that's the class that I'm talking about. It's a half-quarter class and we have our "mid term" tomorrow. The class is relatively interesting (as interesting as a three hour class can be), but let me tell you, it's going to make my new hobby diagnosing dementia since I'm knee deep in "early signs" right now.

Anyway, since I actually need to study, I'll update quickly. I wanted to share that Jonathan and Claro were in Chicago this weekend, which was lovely, lovely, lovely. I spent Saturday with them, having lunch downtown and then just hanging out at their swank suite on the 17th floor in a hotel by the John Hancock building. The room was airy and filled with sun and I was blissed out lying on the couch with my shoes off gabbing. And not doing any work. That evening we went to Wicker Park/Bucktown and hoped to try the much ballyhooed Hot Chocolate (swank dessert place) but there were billions of people up in that piece so we turned around and found another place.

Sunday was lazy: brunch with some schoolmates and then work all day before meeting up with Claro, Jonathan and Ting for dinner at this sweet cafe called John's Place in Lincoln Park.

And now it's Monday night and the week is AWN.

But the other big news is that I did my first diagnostic test today! It was on a 12 month old, and the child was like sent from the heavens, he was such a treat. He was round and sweet and sociable and cooperative and I swear, I thought that I was going to seizure up or something from how goddamn adorable this child was. At one point he tackled a stuffed Pooh bear who was roughly his size into a hug and a squeal of joy. There are no words. The testing was the fun part and now the report awaits me, which should be a pain in the ass to say the least. But it's all part of the learning experience is what they tell me.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

James Frey is getting raked across the coals these days. I still think his tattoo is hilarious, though. The above standing for "Fuck the bull shit it's time to throw down."
A Reason for Being
Hey, Speech Language Pathology/Speech Therapy was listed in US News as one of the "Excellent Careers for 2006."

Monday, January 09, 2006

Three day weekend
Our first diagnostic got canceled this week so I had Monday off today. I used it to extend my very chill weekend, lesson planning and studying for our first aphasia quiz tomorrow with leisure. Man, I like this schedule so far. I was talking to Lauren before about how the beginning of my quarter has been pretty relaxed but I have this awareness that there is a very large, very heavy piano that is hanging above by head by a string, that piano being a very un-subtle metaphor for my schoolwork induced stress. This is all to say, that the smack-down from the piano has been postponed and I am glad.

What did I do this weekend? Nothing much at all, happily. I got to see Katja a couple of times while she was in town and the rest of the time was spent shopping and watching really, really terrible movies on tv. Let's talk about shopping first...major sales, dudes! Robin gave me a gift certificate to Banana Republic for Christmas so I stopped by the chaotic BR at the Oakbrook Mall this past Saturday. I got an organza skirt that I adore (priced $25 down from $88!) and a heavy wool cardigan ($30 down from $128...yes, overpriced to begin with). It was all free to me, but yay for the bargains.

In terms of terrible movies, Todd and I watched the following:
1. "Mother, May I Sleep with Danger"...for the third time. All times had been in chunks, so now we managed to piece the whole complicated story together. Tori Spelling, horrible acting, a hilariously whacked out storyline; these all equal perfection.
2. "Save the Last Dance" which celebrates an inter-racial teenage romance and crappy hip-hop dancing and ballet. I don't know why we sat there and watched the entire thing, but we did. Todd and I commented on how the movie was basically about us and the issues with our inter-racial relationship.
3. "Lean on Me": the last time I saw this was when it came out (1986? 1987?). I frickin' loved it then, and spent the entirety of the film convulsing from inspirational chills. Now it's kind of hilarious. Morgan Freeman is so pissed off! And he walks around with a bullhorn! Awesome.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Things that I love in far.
1. The Soy and Flax seed tortilla chips from Trader Joe's, "spicy" variety. Dudes, I don't think that I can describe how good and fiber-filled these chips are. Add some kalamata olive hummus and you have reached a nirvana-like state.

2. The new OXO brand coffee mug that Todd gave me for Christmas. This thing is so awesome for two reasons:

a. It has a click button that will close off the sippy part, so when you knock the thing over (and you do), no coffee exits.
b. It keeps the coffee warm for hours! HOURS I tell you!

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Let's talk cute.
The New York Times has an article on "the cute factor" and what makes it up. The baby panda at the national zoo is featured (of course!).

Cuteness is distinct from beauty, researchers say, emphasizing rounded over sculptured, soft over refined, clumsy over quick. Beauty attracts admiration and demands a pedestal; cuteness attracts affection and demands a lap. Beauty is rare and brutal, despoiled by a single pimple. Cuteness is commonplace and generous, content on occasion to cosegregate with homeliness.


Scientists who study the evolution of visual signaling have identified a wide and still expanding assortment of features and behaviors that make something look cute: bright forward-facing eyes set low on a big round face, a pair of big round ears, floppy limbs and a side-to-side, teeter-totter gait, among many others.


New studies suggest that cute images stimulate the same pleasure centers of the brain aroused by sex, a good meal or psychoactive drugs like cocaine, which could explain why everybody in the panda house wore a big grin.

(via Wonkette)

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

End of days and beginning of days
Back in Chicago! We got back yesterday afternoon after a relatively painless trip back from DC. Dulles was crowded and a nightmare (I *so* dislike the security line at lovely Dulles), and we had to sit on the runway for a little, *and* we had to circle in the air for awhile before we could land in O'Hare, but we were only delayed by like an hour and a half overall. Not that bad considering that people were lying on the aisles of O'Hare as we were walking through and I had heard that there were cots set up later on during the day. There were hailstorms and thunderstorms in Chicago that morning. But, please note that it's still kinda mild. No hats and mittens are necessary right now, folks.

The last day in DC was nice and relaxed. Todd and I went to the lovely Great Falls park and walked along the trail awhile. I liked the brisk fresh air and stretching the legs a little after a couple weeks of slothdom. It was partly sunny and not too cool, so a perfect day for a walk. After that we headed back home where my mom cooked up a serious (srrrsss) feast of honey ham and roasted chicken. Man, I love home cooking. It was tough to come back to Chicago the next morning, particularly since we had to wake up at the butt crack of dawn to get to the airport. Basically I had gotten accustomed to DC again, to the comforts of home and family and all of my good friends closeby, and of course, vacation. When I thought of the impending stress of school and the gray coldness of Chicago, I wasn't too psyched.

But the good news is that it's good to be back. I had my first day of class today, and my schedule is set up so that I have all three of my classes today, so got to experience them all. I feel pretty optimistic about all of them; one will be somewhat of a doozy, but at least it's interesting stuff. I also got my clinic assignments which are reasonable and not too tough. I had been particularly anxious about my diagnostic team assignment, but I got my first choice (working with pre-school kids) with my favorite supervisor and a very cool group, so I am kneeling down to the clinic gods as we speak. It could have been much more difficult.

So, yeah, the first week is not quite as crazy as I was anticipating which I like very much...I like easing into stuff. Tonight I went out with some school mates to ring in the beginning of the quarter to one packed Evanston hangout and had a bloody mary to die for.

But one more quick note about DC: I can't stress enough how well I ate when I was home. All of those lovely people who treated me to meals, you know who you are, belong in some kind of Museum of Awesome. Mom and Dad pulled out all of the stops, especially when Todd was there (dim sum at the best place in DC, roast beef, pecan pie, etc) and steak and cheesecake made by Jonathan and Clarence also needs to be noted. Can you see why I didn't want to leave?

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy, Happy New Year!
Happy 2006. I like the sound of the year already. While '5' is a hard number, all sharp edges, 6 is smooth and like honey. (Like that? I got more where it came from, I'm sure).

Last night Dee and Dave hosted a few people at their beautiful place in Falls Church. Everyone brought food, drink, and we played board games and it was a lot of fun. We watched the ball drop and then everyone fell off bit by bit, all of us out of there by about 1 a.m. I can't believe how pathetic that is; even *last* year we all managed to after party a bit and not go to bed till at least after 4 in the morn. This time we were all fighting to stay up past 12:30. Todd suggested that this was perhaps due more to the mood of all of us, focusing on board games and delicious dips rather than partay-ing down and trying to get our money's worth from some bar admission. I liked that this year was pleasantly slow and laid back, but I hope that turning 29 doesn't mean that I'm bidding farewell to my ability to stay up past midnight.

But in other news, it's our last day in DC before heading back to Chicago tomorrow. Although I look forward to returning to the city, I'm not looking forward to the cold or the impending stress of the quarter. I'm trying to keep positive about it all, but I know that this next quarter is going to be a tough one. Classes start on Tuesday. Gah!