Monday, November 27, 2006

Turkey Hangover, still.
How was everyone's Thanksgivings? Mine was lovely. Todd and I cooked up a huge feast with Kiley and Steve (pictures impending), but the entire holiday was over way too quickly for my liking. Here I am, it's Monday night, and I have a bunch of work that needs to get done. I'm totally unmotivated and feel kind of out of it, but that's probably from being computer-bound for so long. I spent the last half hour perusing emails from two years ago, that's how desperate things have gotten. It made me realize what a horribly putrid correspondent I have become.

But, may I say: this is my last official week in grad school. Praise Allah.

What else happened? Well, besides the lovely mild weather and some long, leisurely walks, I didn't do much. We did go and see "Borat" the other night. I went in with hugely high, astronomical hopes since seeing his bits on the Ali G show slays me to tears. I found the movie to be funny, but it was more gross-out, scatalogical humor which I'm not crazy about. I realized afterward that what I loved about the Borat character in the show ws that while he was incredibly clueless, and often offensive, he maintained a certain sweetness about him (the episode where he was on the treadmill--it killed me). In the movie, those subtle sweetness were sort of sloughed off, and the jokes were more aggressive and in-your-face. So, while it was still funny, I definitely prefer the show-Borat.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

I was paying bills this morning. For a bill of $37.37, I ended up using check number 37. What are the odds of that? I need to go and get a lottery ticket stat.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

And so begins the festivity season
It's been a fun weekend besides the SLP certification test on Saturday morning and writing of papers in between. Last night I accompanied Todd to his friend, Emily's, wedding. Whoa. Very nice and swanky. The reception was at this restaurant in downtown called Nacional 27, which has chichi Latin food. Apparently, it's the hot place to go for salsa dancing on the weekends. They rented the restaurant out for the night, and it was great. The drinks were flowing and they were all fancy-dancy (my favorite: mojito martini). The appetizers were amazing (crap and guacamole dip, lobster salad, cerviche, etc) and the main course food was varied and delicious. I woke up this morning with a bit of a dashy stomach from all of the rich and delicious food. But it was worth it.

Today we went to Todd's family's Thanksgiving feast in Wilmington. Mmmm.

So, very fun weekend. The next couple of days will be a little work-filled, but I can handle two days

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Yays and Boos
Boo to writing this paper due next Tuesday. It's an interesting topic, but I'm having difficulty organizing my research and it makes me tired. I am on page 4 of 10, and it's sucking a whole lot right now.

Yay to Robin, who is an amazing brother, and sent me his digital camera to use when he had read on ye olde blog that mine was kaput.

Boo to certification exams in fields of study. Mine is next Saturday, although I confess that it is a whole lot better than comprehensive exams such as James recently took. You are a strong man, James.

Yay to broccoli and delicious lemon yogurt being on sale at the grocery store. The broccoli was only 49 cents a pound! Awesome!. I had the lemon yogurt for dessert tonight and I thought that I would die from the pure joy of the experience.

Monday, November 13, 2006

One more thing knocked off the to-do list.
The above title is not referring to my current, ever-growing to-do list for school and general getting my life together stuff, but to my List of Things-That-I-Must-Do-in Chicago-at-Some-Point. Saturday evening (after finally getting some work done at the library...the coffee did the trick, if you care) Todd and I joined Steve and Kiley to celebrate Steve's immediate birthday for an evening at the Green Mill, because according to them "that's something that 30-year olds do." True that. The Green Mill is an old acclaimed jazz joint in Uptown. It's renowned for late hours, good jazz, and a rich and juicy history (Al Capone and his henchmen had a regular booth there, apparently). I had always wanted to go, so was excited for the opportunity.

So, it was good.

I don't know my jazz, but it sounded good to me, and I was impressed by the management's iron-clad will to keep the place quiet when the music is playing (no loud conversations are allowed, nor are cell phones allowed to be turned on). We got there late enough that we didn't snag one of the booths or tables, but managed to find a length of the bar to belly up to. The drink prices weren't outrageous, which I kind of expected them to be, because the truth is that enough locals and tourists go that they could charge out the nose. And the people watching was spectacular. The bouncer/doorman had a waxed, curlique moustache that would make historical re-enactors quiver in their boots, and there was the most hilarious couple engaging in a massive display of public affection in the booth beside us.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

I swear to God, I'm getting dumber every day.

In one of my classes, we were discussing "gifted students." We spent most of the time talking not about your run-of-the-mill honors class kids (and most of you reading this were just those kids) but the super-duper geniuses. Anyway, one of the signs of a super-crazy smart kid is one who is able to focus for long periods of time on the topic of interest. That flagged my interest since I've been noticing lately that my own focus has been shot (and this is really all about me). I seriously can't sit down for more than an half an hour working on something before my mind wanders. Bottom line: I am the opposite of a super-genius.

Even today is a good example. I came over to the library which has nice uncluttered space and is relatively free of distractions (besides the free wi-fi, that is). I've been here for a little over an hour and I've done maybe 20 solid minutes of work. And now I'm completely obsessed with the idea of taking a break and getting some coffee from across the street. I saw a guy sitting at another table drinking a cup and I began to slaver immediately.

I think this calls for self-bribing. The deal of the moment is one in which I must sit here for another hour and do at least half an hour more of work before allowing myself that coffee break.
Hmm, there's a guy who's been sitting across from me working on some sort of very complicated table. I figured that he was a business student or some such crap, but it looks like he's doing some sort of fantasy football deal. Now *that* guy has some focus that I admire.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Veterans Day!
It's been a good week. Firstly because of the awesome midterm elections. I can't believe that the Dems have majority in both the House and the Senate, now, but it's a long time in coming. Tuesday night was pretty exciting; I kept on checking the polls online and so many states were neck and neck. I'm thrilled that Webb got Virginia.

Secondly, my car is back with me as of this morning. She is shiny and new with her replaced bumper, light, and hood. The place even cleaned her for me, so that was a nice positive.

Thirdly, I have the day off from school. Yahoo! I have lots of work to do, but it's nice that there's an extra day of it.

On Wednesday, my supervisor was out at my school placement so when I didn't see kids I got to hang out in the classrooms of my choice. I spent my free time in my favorite preschool classroom with my favorite preschool teacher (I love the way that she interacts with the kids, and she is always cracking up at their absurdity, which I appreciate). Pre-schoolers are hands down my favorite age to work with, I realized. They're interested, interesting, blunt, kind of bizarre, sweet, and crack me the hell up. They are not capable of any kind of machinations, but if they do happen to try, it's so transparent that it's more hilarious than anything else. I love that.

But on Wednesday it hit me more than ever that pre-schoolers act like drunkards.
  • They lumber and clumsily wheel into shelves or any standing object nearby.
  • They hold loud conversations that follow no rules of topic maintenance.
  • They are full of non-sequitors.
    • One little one walked up to me and calmly stated "My shoes are purple." They were not.
  • They are free and sloppy with their effusiveness and affections.
    • Another of my favorite little ones, who I don't see as a client, approached me when I was in the room, threw his arms around me, and sweetly stated "I love you."
  • They howl and laugh over un-funny things. So much that they can be convinced that something is hilarious when it may not be.
    • I was reading a picture book with one of my kids, and when commenting on a picture, did a fake laugh and suggested "Isn't that silly?!" He immediately burst into laughter and said "SO silly!" Best audience ever.

Monday, November 06, 2006

The Bane of My Existence: Hard Work Has Paid Off
So I'm taking an online geology course to help fulfill my requirements for certification (I needed an undergrad physical science course and I opted to take this one). It is kicking the ass in a major way. (Christie, my beloved friend who majored in Geology, would probably be tickled mightily because yours truly *struggles*). I bombed my first three assignments and was managing an awesome C- average. It was dire. So I really, really tried on my fourth assignment and was holding my breath to find out the grade. I just checked it online and I got an A+! I am seriously proud.
Two Years!
Todd and I have been dating for two years now (my, how time flies) and we went out last night to a fancy dinner to celebrate. We went to Fixture for their "Beer and Bacon" pre-fixe meal. It was tres chi chi, and definitely special-occasion pricing, but well worth it. Each of the three courses was paired with a delicious brew, and each of the courses had some sort of bacon or pork addition. It was super fun, and very appropriate, and we both enjoyed it immensely.

I made Todd take pictures of at least two of the courses with his camera phone, but he drew the line at bringing his digital camera with its flash into the dimly lit restaurant for the purpose of taking pictures of the meal. I definitely need a digital camera that works because I gots NO shame in that way. And I know how much my loyal audience appreciates looking at food porn, like me.

On an unrelated note, I did my second hearing screening at one of the private schools around here this morning in order to fulfill requirements. We screened middle and high schoolers and they were all surprisingly polite and sweet. One of the teenagers cracked me up: he barely passed his screening so the supervising audiologist was questioning him about to what he's been exposing his young ears. She asked him about whether he has used fireworks recently and he paused for a second and then very blase-ly informed her that he routinely participates in "roman candle wars." She was like "I don't even know what those are, but stop doing them." Then he told her he went to a "death metal grind core" concert on Saturday night and stood up front. That kid was the best. He also said that his mom uses garlic cloves as ear plugs. The audiologist had never heard of that before; have any of you?

Sunday, November 05, 2006

I spent the whole of yesterday taking tests that are a mandatory part of my path to the obtainment of teacher's certification. What a pain in the ass. I got up at 5:20 in the morning and then hustled on down to the huge, cavernous convention center down by Chinatown. I left there at about 5:20 feeling completely burnt.

So today is nice and lazy. I was intending to do some work, but I haven't been able to motivate myself just yet. Urg.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

You want to see some awesome costumery?
Check out Kevin's blog post about the costumes he made for he and Dop.

UNbelievable. They better have won some kind of prize.