Friday, February 27, 2009

The Dad Quiz

My dad has this funny obsession with putting up pictures of his kids on his blog and asking trivia questions that nobody ever knows the answers to unless they were the ones in the picture. So I think it's about time for a Daddy quiz. But of course, since I'm not my father, my quiz will be a little different from his. Right answers are worth one point, smart aleck answers are also worth one point, but if they make me laugh out loud, they're worth two points. Also, there may be more than one question per picture, so there are ample opportunities to earn points. Winner gets a prize.

Three questions:
1) What kind of pocket protector is Dad wearing in this picture?
2) What song are Dad and Dianna dancing to?
3) What was Dad's nickname for Dianna at this age? (Actually, I guess he still uses it sometimes.)

Three questions:
4) In what state was this picture taken?
5) Why the heck is Dad wearing a fanny pack?
6) Why doesn't Dad wear fanny packs anymore?

Two questions:
7) How old is Dad in this picture?
8) How loudly (in decibels) did he just fart?

Two questions:
9) How did Mom convince Dad to shave the shaggy beard?
10) What kind of plant is Dad standing in front of?

Two questions:
11) What was Dad's occupation at the time this picture was taken?
12) Why the heck do Mom and Dad have matching glasses?

Two questions:
13) When did Dad start putting all his pens (of all colors) in one cup?
14) Just how long has he had that watch? (See picture 1.)

Three questions:
15) Why does Dad look totally drugged in this picture?
16) What does Dad think of Mom's curtains?
17) Who was Hubble?

The Perfect Sad Face

Since neither Casey nor Rob are going to be at juggling practice this evening, I tried to beg some friends from my German class to go. I've begged most of them before, but this time, I begged them to go just this once. Quinby and Corey both said they would show up, but almost everyone else said flatly, "No." And when they did, would you believe, Quinby LAUGHED at me!

"When people turn you down for juggling, you look so downtrodden!" he said. "You have, like, the perfect sad face."

I take that as a compliment. Mwaha!

Rye actually sent me an IM today! He just wanted to know if I've decided what I'm doing this summer yet. So I went ahead and decided to go back to Seward again this summer, even though I seriously wasn't planning on going back. I admit, I kind of miss my little housekeeping family, even though they did annoy me sometimes. But after THIS summer, I'm totally not going back!

....Yeah, right. I love Seward.

Oh yeah, he also linked me to the game It's super-cool! The goal is to use the little circles to bend the light beams so they shoot through the sound boxes to make a melody. It's a puzzle game. Yay, puzzles! :D

Casey taught me the Georgian Shuffle at juggling on Wednesday. It was awesome, because I actually learned it in half an hour! Yay for learning something quickly!!! Usually, it takes me FOREVER to learn new tricks! I think my muscle memory or coordination or precision or something isn't quite up to par. Also, the trick looks really cool! Completely different pattern from most of the three-ball tricks I know other than maybe Factory and that one that I don't even know the name of.

Then, while we were juggling, he took off his ring and handed it to me and said, "Here, check this out." So I looked at it and he went back to juggling. It was a huge silver ring, big enough to cover the space between the two knuckles without actually hindering your hand movement at all, and it had a neat copper design in it. So I looked at it, and then just held it for a minute, feeling kind of silly, but wondering why Casey wanted me to hold his ring for him. Turns out he wanted to show me because he made the ring himself. Something to do with melting copper and silver together or using lots of pressure or something--I admit, I didn't really follow most of his explanation. He said he could make me one, "maybe a little daintier than this one." Scrounging up a little money for it may be tricky, but it would totally be worth it just to be able to say, "Hey, check out my ring. A BOY made it for me!" Not to mention I could probably talk him into letting me watch/help. Who knows? I might even learn something!

Today's post has been brought to you by the word lexiphanic.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Weird people

I am so freaking jealous of my oldest brother right now....

Well, shoving that aside...

Work was pretty fun yesterday. We have a new layout editor, and I like her. Of course, she's new, so she didn't talk much except to ask questions. But then, I didn't talk much either when I was new. She's the girl who has always written the news briefs, and is one of the writers that doesn't take me too terribly long to edit, so I approve. :)

We got four letters to the editor this week, and every single one of them was kind of crazy! One of them was someone ripping on two of our state representatives who apparently walked out of federal stimulus negotations. I don't mind when people disagree with viewpoints and stuff, but what ticks me off about politics and current events is that instead of ripping on the view or the action, so many people rip on the politicians/celebrities themselves. The second one was so epic, I thought I would post it here:

Exposing and debunking the "theory of evolution" is only the first step in God's glorious plan to restore His chosen people to preeminence in the Promised Land, America. All white, conservative republican, fundamentalist christians must disavow the secular humanist "bacteria theory" of disease and embrace "Intelligent Medicine." Physical and mental illnesses are caused by demons afflicting the sinful. Illness is cured by prayer, fasting and laying on of hands. Vision problems are cured by spitting in dirt and rubbing the mud in the eyes. All true believers will boycott secular humanist doctors and hospitals and follow the teachings of the true, holy word of God.

(I don't feel bad posting this, because it's appearing in the paper anyway.) The third was a rip on one of our writers. And by a "rip," I mean the guy tore one of her articles to shreds, accused her not only of not knowing what she was talking about, but of actually plagiarizing, and then said that she would be better off "staying in the kitchen and doing the dishes... rather than considering submitting more poorly plagiarized articles on topics she knows nothing about." Ouch! SERIOUS burn! Of course, since the writer was accused of plagiarism, Kortnie did an investigation and added an editor's note at the bottom saying that plagiarism is a very serious accusation in the news business and that the issue had been looked into and the girl was found innocent.

The fourth guy was another religious nut saying that one of the comics last week had been a rip on Jesus, and that if it had been any other religious deity, the dishonor would have called for "violence and destruction," but Jesus died to forgive his mockers. Then he quoted about two-thirds of Isaiah 53 (so it was easy to edit, since I have half of that chapter memorized anyway).

Speaking of religious wackos, there was an older guy who came by juggling practice Friday. He watched for a bit, then started talking to Rob (the only other person there), who wasn't doing anything at the time himself. After a while, I came near to see what they were talking about. The guy asked a bunch of digging questions and asked where we go to find truth and why the news media lies so much and where we want our lives to go and so on. The questions were pretty obviously leading in a religious direction, and so Rob eventually left, saying he was tired and had to be up early. I tried to follow, but the guy kept talking, and unless I'm annoyed, I hate being rude and leaving while someone's still talking. It was then that he started talking about how Jesus is the only truth in the world and blah blah blah. I asked him how he could prove it, since he had been going on about how everything else needed to be proven, and he said that I obviously don't know the scriptures very well, for it promises an answer in the Bible, but I'll have to look for it. I started to quote to him the scriptures I know about proving the truth of the Word and accidentally slipped in one from the Book of Mormon. The guy pounced on it and started going on about how Mormons don't have truth because they use the Book of Mormon instead of the Bible. I pointed out that Mormons DO use the Bible, and then he quickly said, "Yes, but they use the Book of Mormon to define it, and so it's skewed." Then he told me Mormons do the ultimate blasphemy by putting themselves above God. Whether I believe the Mormon church is true or not, I don't like people ripping on it in ignorance. Get your information right or gtfo. So I politely told him he had been misinformed about what the Mormons believe so I was concerned that he may been misinformed about everything else he was talking about as well and excused myself by saying I needed to help Rob put the juggling gear away. And walked away while he was still talking.

The nice thing about BYU is that at least that sort of thing never happened. Everyone was ALREADY Mormon.

In other news....

When I woke up this morning, my face hurt. It kind of felt like I had been balancing a thirty-pound cement block on my face all night. After class, I decided to take a nap and see if that helped, and when I woke up, I had a full-fledged headache, which is gradually getting worse, despite the fact that an hour ago, I actually took some Advil for it. Stupid painkillers. They never work.

It must be because I rejected the word of God. I'm being afflicted by a demon, for I am sinful. Heh.

This post has been brought to you by the word antisyzygy.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Soooooo ADD

I hate being ADD. Even caffeine isn't helping. Maybe I ought to actually get some ritalin. Well, at least my room is finally clean. Ish.

This week's newspaper articles have been atrocious so far. It's been a long time since I've had to do so much substantive editing. Oh yeah, that reminds me! I got my papers back from my last few history lessons, and the professor said he liked my humor, but he took off points because my essays weren't in the traditional "intro, A, B, C, conclusion" format. I hate that format. My genius is so unappreciated. Mope.

I'm amused that people take my sarcastic conspiracy rants in history as clever. Seriously, three of my definitions were:

The Marshall Plan was set forth by Truman’s secretary of state, George C. Marshall, in 1947. The idea was to help the countries of Europe get back on their feet after the war, although the real reasoning behind it was probably just to convince the other countries to like the United States so they wouldn’t turn against us, afraid that we were too powerful. But that’s just speculation. Anyway, to make sure the United States was still king of the hill, it was stipulated that about 70 percent of the money we granted to them should be spent on American goods. Aren’t Americans sweet? Oh yeah, also, the plan originally was going to help the Soviets too, but they basically turned it down and said, “We don’t need your help, noobs!” So we were happy, because we didn’t like them anyway. Those Communists.

Walt Disney was the greatest person who ever lived. He created Mickey Mouse, and was constantly coming up with new ideas to make his films a step ahead of everyone else’s. Everyone liked Mickey Mouse because he wasn’t political in any way, so it was a form of entertainment that let people get away from wars and politics and everything else that grown-ups feel they need to constantly argue about. So everyone all over the world watched Mickey Mouse and bought merchandise and built theme parks, which pretty much put America at the head of the entertainment industry. Isn’t it wonderful how something so happy and innocent can be seen as just another ploy to get America even more powerful?

When Coca-cola came out, people all over the world started buying it. It was a sort of symbol of America, which was getting a reputation for being successful and modern and technologically advanced, kind of like Japan today. Except Japan is also crowded, so we can easily drop bombs on them if we start to worry that they’re too far advanced. Then people started getting into all sorts of other distinctly American stuff, most notably Hollywood films. But since Coca-cola is sort of what kicked it off, the whole thing is called Coca-colonization.

I can't believe teachers seriously let me get away with stuff like that. And at the same time, I'm really glad they do, because I think I'm pretty much incapable of writing formally. My father would be horribly disappointed.

Anyway, I'm behind in this week's history lessons because I asked a friend for help defining one of the terms and six hours later realized that we had not only strayed drastically from the topic, but it was... well, six hours later. Okay, maybe the six hours shouldn't have made that big a difference since I had a whole week to do it, but I sometimes procrastinate, okay?

Also, I'm out of food again so I have to go to Wal-Mart. And my sister wears mascara and buys things like "cute little tote bags." I'm so disappointed in her. That's a joke, by the way. I really don't care. It would be weird if she were as manly as I am anyway. She's already manlier than Tigris.

Oh burn!

I found my comb today. That's a good thing, because it's my only one and it's been missing for like three days. There's a reason I always wear a hat.

Also, oriental ramen doesn't taste nearly as good as chicken. For the record.

I tried going for a walk today, but it was too darn cold.

I think I may go back to Seward to work this summer after all. I miss Beth and Rye and the beach and the humidity and the rain and the mountains. Gosh, I love those mountains.

I'm soooo ADD right now, and I've had like four Mountain Dews, so clearly, caffeine is not going to help me pay attention this time. My room is clean, so I can't use the excuse that the disorder is distracting me. I wonder if Rob is coming to juggling practice today. I wonder if Casey is. I wonder why Corey didn't come to his piano lesson today. Or was that yesterday? Why the heck did I let my sleep schedule get so skewed? Oh yeah, nightmares. That reminds me, I should e-mail my teacher.


Friday, February 20, 2009

Dang nightmares

It's been a very long time since I've had a nightmare so bad I didn't want to go to sleep again, but here it is, almost three in the morning, and I can't sleep now. I woke up a few hours ago, turned on all the lights, locked my door, and took out my skinning knife, loosened it from its sheath, and kept it nearby, that's how freaked out I was. And no, I'm not going to relate the dream. Just wanted to mention that I hate having nightmares. Also, I want my mommy.

So apparently, I'm going to have my picture in the paper this week. At work on Sunday, Kortnie was casting around for story ideas and I mentioned, half-jokingly, that she could write about how juggling club needs more members or it'll be canceled. Well, she liked the idea (that or she was desperate), so at practice on Wednesday, a reporter and photographer showed up to write a story about us. And I was the only person there on Wednesday. They were really disappointed, and I wasn't sure whether to be annoyed or to laugh at them and ask, "Well, what did you expect?" The photographer wanted to come back on Friday to see if there were more people then, but her boss walked by and she asked him (her deadline is a few hours before practice Friday), and he said, "Nope, just shoot what's there now." So I went through my repertoire of tricks while she took pictures. I felt pretty silly.

I think it's definitely time for a new glasses prescription. It's been almost four years since my last eye appointment, and I'm having trouble reading stuff that I'm positive should be way easy to read. Heck, if I sit in the back of the classroom, I can't read the expression on the teacher's face anymore, much less the board. I've found that sitting in the second row helps me pay attention anyway. It's close enough that I don't feel distanced from the teacher, but far enough away that I don't get nervous, feeling like the teacher's watching everything I do. Maybe that's why I have trouble paying attention in HEL. In that class, I sit with my friends, who sit in the back corner of the room. I admit, I like sitting in the back corner because it gives me a nice view of everyone in the room. Also, maybe it's because I'm still paranoid about that nightmare, but I'm thinking it's nice having solid walls at my back. I don't think it's because of the nightmare, though. I really do like having solid walls at my back. I don't like people sneaking up on me, and I don't like being touched from behind. That's why I get more tense when people try to give me a massage.

...How the heck did I get on this topic from talking about my glasses?

.....Oh, right.

So anyway, I was thinking about that when I was walking home from my classes today, and as I did, it occurred to me to wonder if anyone else has little black lines that float across their vision, or white sparkles (no, not snow). I usually ignore them, and really only even notice them when I'm looking at the sky or when I'm exceptionally tired. So I began wondering if maybe that's not normal and that maybe I'll end up going blind because of it. I doubt it. But then I started wondering what it would be like to be blind. Juggling and playing the piano would be drastically harder. Playing the computer would be right out. Driving would definitely be out. Being blind, I would even need assistance to buy Ramen, much less cook it! Working would be pretty difficult too. So really, what can blind people do? We don't have wise blind prophets or seers like you read about in stories sometimes. In America today, a blind person could pretty much just listen to music and talk to people about the "good old days," back before their lives began to suck. They would write to the government and have the government pay them to sit around and wait to die because they can't really do much of anything else. I'm sure the people who have always loved them appreciate the extra time with them, but seriously, what kind of existence would that be?

I know, I know, that's awful of me. I'm sure they could listen to textbooks on tape and become super-geniuses and cure cancer and kill the human race because of overpopulation instead of terminal illnesses, right? Wow, I'm cynical all of a sudden. I'm sorry. Seriously, I guess everyone's just trying to eke out whatever existences they can the best way they know how. I don't know which is more sad: Someone who is a drug addict and spends their whole life high, dealing drugs and taking more, or someone who sits at home and does nothing all day every day, with no plan for the future other than avoiding work. Because it's generally agreed that the drug addict is living his life focusing on what's morally wrong... but at least he's enjoying life, whereas the person sitting at home and stagnating is just existing. Not really living.

I once knew a guy who was majoring in philosophy who said the way to know who someone truly is would be by seeing who they are when they wake up at two in the morning and haven't had time to put up the mask they show to the world. I don't think I agree with him on that point. I agree that all you see of most people is their mask, but I think that people pick the masks they make for a reason, so you can tell more about people from their masks than he suggests. Not everything, of course. I also don't think people are themselves at two in the morning, necessarily. I don't know when they are themselves, but I don't think it's when they've just woken up in the middle of the night. Of course, I suppose he's put more thought into it than I have. I think philosophy is a bit silly. Anyway, if he's right, then I guess now you know who I really am.

Dang nightmares.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Bored in Class

We have a little too much fun in German class sometimes. This morning, we were in groups, writing rules for simple past verb conjugation on posters, which we were supposed to hang on the board and compare. My group decided to put pictures at the bottom, but couldn't think of anything relevant to draw. So we just had fun.

I've noticed something funny about my History of the English Language class. The classroom is set up so that there are two students to every table, and I remember noticing that in most of my classes at BYU or in school, when people had to pair off, it always seemed to be boy-boy, and girl-girl, or most of the guys would sit on the left side of the room and most of the girls would sit on the right. Occasionally, you'd have a couple who were dating or engaged or married who would sit together, but for the singles, they were often segregated. Oh, and there was the occasional ladies' man, who would sit surrounded by like six pretty girls with this big smirk on his face. But in my HEL class (hehe, good name for it), every table has one guy and one girl, although the pairings are different almost every time, and no one is obviously dating the people they sit with. Sometimes I sit with Jeremy, sometimes Casey, sometimes Craig or Skyler. Jeremy will sit with me or Sarah or Bri or someone else, and... well, you get the idea.

Today we had a quiz on noun declensions of Old English. Well, I thought so, but apparently, the quiz was only on the strong masculine declension. So I memorized weak masculine, feminine, neuter, -ur endings, exceptions, and the conjugations in both active and passive present and past for nothing. Oh well. That's what I get for not paying attention in class. I have a problem with paying attention sometimes (and no it's NOT because I always sit next to a guy!), so this morning, I decided to try drinking some Mountain Dew before class, because caffeine sometimes helps me concentrate. I've tried coffee, but it tastes nasty. People assure me that it's an "acquired" taste, but I don't consider it worth the effort to acquire. So Mountain Dew it was. And I was pretty much bouncing out of my chair all through class. (Strange, it doesn't usually have that much of an effect on me.) Then Jeremy and I started passing notes, and they're pretty much the nerdiest notes ever.

Yeah, that's what happens when two linguists get bored in class. And yet, despite nearly bouncing out of my chair and passing notes all through class, I still caught five times more of the lesson today than I did on Thursday. Go figure.

Oh oh oh! Also, I made mushroom bacon meatloaf with cheddar today, and it actually turned out well! Yay, I cooked! :D

Monday, February 16, 2009

On that note...

There were six people at juggling practice on Wednesday, and eight there on Friday, but today we were back down to two again. I guess it was a good thing, because I worked so hard at practice on Friday that I'm still sore from it. It was the first time in months that I've broken a sweat at practice.

I've decided it's been too long since I've learned a new trick, so I'm going to learn the Box. It's pretty hard, but I would probably get it if I were to sit down and focus on it for a few hours. But I'm a little ADD sometimes (understatement), so I tend to run out of attention span too fast. I also get frustrated too easily. Friday's practice, for example, while it was tons of fun and absolutely thrilling to have more than two or three people there for a change, still frustrated me a little bit because almost every one of the people there was way better than me. But that's okay, that just means there's a lot they can teach me! Besides, being with friends is fun, and you pretty much have to be laid-back to be a juggler, so everyone's friends with everyone.

I finally got around to doing my laundry and taking out the trash, but my room still smells kind of funny. I tried getting one of those air freshener thingies, but that just made it smell worse. Maybe I should get a flower or something. Ohhh, that reminds me! Adam, one of the guys I work with, got flowers for Valentine's Day, and he brought them into work. We're not talking like a cut bouquet that's going to die in a few days, but rather potted flowers. I'm not sure what they were, either--they were kind of like lilacs, but just the flower part, and the flowers were about three times the size, and instead of being like a bush, it was just the stem and the flowers. I'm pretty sure it wasn't lavender, either. But they were very fragrant, and they made the office smell nice. For some reason, I think growing flowers smell nicer than clipped ones, though I've never been a big flower person. (Of course, I've never been a big butterfly person either, yet I still wear a sparkly butterfly necklace all the time. Go figure.)

Oh oh oh, by the way, thank you, Terrace, for the new header, and again for going back and redoing it to put my quote in. :D You rock!

And as my friend Tony puts it: "On that note, I'm going to go get some sleep. Seeeee ya!"

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Picture day!

Today was one of those days... I woke up, went outside, got fifty feet, then turned around and went back for my camera, because WOW what a sunrise!!!! It was the beginning of one of the best days I've had in a really long time!

First, I pretty much aced my German test. Well, I think I did, anyway. I definitely didn't fail it, at least. And I left a little early so I could stop and get a donut and hot chocolate on the way there. It was wonderful. :)

Then I had every intention of going home to study and get all my homework done so I could be ahead of the game... but then I remembered, dangit, I had to be at the student club fair thingy at eleven. Since German class ended at 10:15, it didn't make much sense to walk the ten-ish minutes home so I could sit around for half an hour and come back, so I hung around the Wood Center. I ran into Natay, one of the sort-of members of juggling club, who introduced me to her Australian friend Hannah, who's crazier than me on massive amounts of caffeine! Well... at least AS crazy, anyway. I made the mistake of calling her a Brit and she flipped out, so of course, now I call her a Brit just to tease her. (Better than calling her a Kiwi, I guess.) Then we heard someone playing the piano and meandered over to investigate. Well, I meandered. Hannah took off running for it.

Turns out the guy playing the piano was a friend of Hannah's and Natay's. His name is Caleb, and he was absolutely AMAZING on the piano. He's one of those guys who just plays what he feels like, so you pick a key, and he'll make up a song right then and there. I was thoroughly impressed. Also, thoroughly jealous.

At eleven, I headed over to the club fair, where I was to sit at the Icebox table and ask people to come edit for us. Also, we were doing a little bit of a fundraiser, where we would write extemporaneous poetry. People picked a length (50 cents a line) and some words they wanted included, and we scribbled out poems until the person came back five minutes later and picked their favorite. Then we wrote it out all nice and pretty on a card and gave it to them. The catch was, I was the only person there for a little while, so I got to solo-write four poems about an elephant and a huckleberry. Then Jessa and Cindy showed up and gave me leave to wander around the fair.

First, of course, I found the medieval club. The ladies in charge about flipped out when I told them I could play all kinds of recorder and that I could juggle and teach other people how. I suggested maybe combining a medieval guild meeting with a juggling practice one day a week or something, and they basically begged me to join the medieval club. I asked if I could be a jester knight, and the lady (who was head of the Punster's Guild) said, "Of course! You can be a jester night and day!" Haaaa!

Natay and Hannah were still around, as was Amanda, a friend of mine from a class last semester. I hung out with them for most of the rest of the fair. It was the most fun I've had in ages! They're really energetic, and I felt like I could actually let my hair down (figuratively, since my hair's still pretty short) and stop trying to act like a responsible adult for a little while. We stole each other's hats and chased each other around, and Natay and Hannah did the limbo. I used to be really good at the limbo when I was like ten, but since then, I've gotten two feet taller, a lot less flexible, and a lot more self-conscious, so I just took pictures.

Hannah won every time, but after the first time, she passed the prizes on to other people and just played for fun. Then we met up with another guy, Josh. We all wandered around and played with the toys at the science club's booth and nicked cookies from the film club's booth and played with Natay's devil sticks, which aren't technically devil sticks, but lunar sticks, not that anyone really makes the distinction. Usually.

Josh was fun to meet. He seems to be one of those lady's men that is infuriating because he flirts with everyone, so girls get crushes on him and then hate him because they can't tell whether he likes them or is just being nice because he's a nice guy. I laugh at those girls, because seriously, if he's interested, he'll make a move. If he's not, he won't. Don't hate him because you're thinking too hard! Relax and have fun! Sheesh!

Okay, sorry for that momentary soapbox moment. Anyway, yeah. Nice guy.

We also ran into Jeremy, from my English History class this semester and also German last semester, and Adrian, who's the student body vice president. He knows like everyone on campus by name. The first time he met me, I just stopped by to ask him what time Club Council meeting was. Since then, he's never once forgotten my name, and he always smiles and says hello. Actually, I've only ever once seen him when he wasn't smiling. Wonderful guy. He's studying political science, and if he ever runs for a government position I can vote for, I will definitely vote for him. He's that awesome.

Adrian was wandering around reminding the Club Council representatives about the council meeting tomorrow, but of course, he stopped and chatted and took interest in what was going on and played with the exhibits. While he was at the science club's booth, I picked up the air cannon and shot him, and we started playing around with that. Unfortunately, it was a pretty decrepit air cannon, not even strong enough to knock a beach ball off the table from two feet away.

I was actually almost sad when the fair ended. I helped Cindy carry the Icebox stuff back up to her office and walked home. Since I still had my camera, I went ahead and took a picture of how deep the snow is.

I also got a fantastic scenery shot on the way home! Did I ever mention that Alaska's one of the most beautiful places I've ever been?

And of course, to top off my wonderful day, I had juggling practice tonight. Rob didn't show up, but nevertheless, we had SIX people there!

Natay showed up with Hannah and Caleb (piano guy, who also turns out to be a fantastic juggler), and Casey came, of course. Then, since there were five of us playing around and having a great time, people actually stopped to watch, and eventually, another guy joined us and asked to learn. Casey was a great teacher, and he befriended the guy, whose name was Ben. We were expecting him to try for five minutes and give up, but he stuck around for 45 minutes before leaving, and then only because the Wood Center was closing. He said he would come back Friday, and I think he actually might, because he stayed so long!

I worked with Casey and Natay on stealing today, hoping to get some really cool routines in for our next show, which IS going to happen! After we tried a little bit of leapfrog stealing, I tried doing two-headed juggling with Natay. Then we positioned Casey in between us and had him juggle three while we juggled three over his pattern. It was pretty hard, because our pattern was large enough that it was pretty inaccurate. In fact, my throws kept landing on Casey's head. Good thing we weren't using the two-pound balls! A bit of practice, though, and I bet it would look really cool!

This post has been brought to you by the word catarolysis.

(PS - If you look through these pictures, you may notice that there are three other people wearing hats like mine! I actually fit in here! :D)

Monday, February 9, 2009

Bring it on

I think the planets must have been misaligned this last week or something, or maybe my guardian angel was PMSing and decided to make life hard for me. I'm not quite dumb enough to stare life in the face and say, "Bring it on," because it probably would, but I am going to defiantly refuse to let it get me down all the way. You want to know some good things about life?

Hot chocolate and a warm blanket on a day when it's so cold outside that your breathe freezes and puts frost all over your face.

Friends who want to cheer you up even if they do a bad job of it.

Other friends who cheer you up without even realizing it.

Having time to sit and let your imagination run away so you don't have to be you for a little while.

Hiking to the top of a mountain or a waterfall or somewhere else in the middle of nowhere and just sitting quietly and enjoying the peace.

Being with a group of people who mock each other because they love each other.

Stars, auroras, comets, and the Milky Way.

Pepperoni with cottage cheese.

That feeling you get when sudden realization hits and you understand something you've been struggling with for a while.

Playing music without even realizing you're playing because you're enjoying listening to it so much.

Spelunking and/or rock climbing.

A compliment on something you worked really hard on.

That feeling of pride you get when you fix/build something.

Hugs from children.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Saving Gravity Works

On Tuesday, a kid in my class saw me wearing my juggling club t-shirt and asked how he could join the club. Of course, I was delighted because the club's dying at the end of this semester if we don't get more active members. So I gave him the meeting times and surreptitiously watched him look up juggling websites all through class and got really excited that we'd have a new member.

Wednesday's practice came, and I got to practice and told Rob excitedly about this new kid who said he was going to join, and Rob rolled his eyes and said it wouldn't happen, he wouldn't stay for more than a week or two, et cetera et cetera... and as if to prove his argument, Casey never showed up. So I got very depressed, because to me, canceling juggling club because nobody goes is as if someone decided to kill my mother, using the excuse "Because nobody wants her." Of course someone does! I want her! (Actually, that's a bad example, because my mom is one of the most well-loved people I know. But you get my meaning.)

So Thursday rolled around, and I went to class and saw Casey, who said, "I'm so sorry for missing practice. I lost the times you gave me, so I looked them up on your website, but you must have changed the times, because I showed up at 6:30 and waited around for an hour and no one showed up!" Well... okay, that's true. Our web master dropped off the face of the earth, the website hasn't been updated in a few years, and last semester, we changed Wednesday practices from 7:00 to 8:30. Oops! So suddenly, the world was good again, and Casey and I started babbling about fireballs and Rubenstein's Revenge and silly people who think they can't juggle because they spent five whole minutes practicing and still can't do it. And two of the other kids in our little group of friends heard us, and one said she wanted to learn how to juggle and would probably start coming on Sundays, and the other guy said, "Well, if everyone else is doing it, sure, why not?"

Thursday evening, I bugged Rob to try and contact the web master, if only to get the information we need to update the website. Rob said sure, and by the way, he got another job, so he can't make it to practice on Fridays anymore. So Rob didn't show up on Friday, but Casey did, and so did a guy named Dustin, who used to be in the club a few years ago. I basically begged him to start coming regularly again. He said he can only make it on Fridays, but that he would try to come as often as he could, and that he would also try to contact the people who used to be in the club and don't come anymore for whatever reason. Yay!!!

Practice yesterday was the most fun it's been in months! First, Casey and I traded some tricks. Casey knows at least as many tricks as I do, and he's also better at juggling four balls. The really sad thing is, he's only been juggling for two weeks, he says. Apparently, he got bored two weeks ago, decided to learn how to juggle, and spent a day or two doing absolutely nothing but eating, sleeping, and juggling. I'm astounded at how fast he picked up not only juggling, but also terminology. We went outside briefly to play with Casey's fireballs (AWESOME!) because it was actually above zero yesterday! Then Dustin and I spent an hour practicing passing and solids and doubles (club passing tricks). We all spat out some ideas for fun routines we could do in shows, and Casey seems as vehement as I am about keeping the juggling club alive. When I said I was going to find a way to keep the juggling club from dying no matter what, Casey insisted that he would help.

I'm really excited. Rob may or may not be right about the other two kids in the class coming just a few times, realizing that juggling takes work before it's fun, and never coming again, but I get the feeling Casey's going to stick around for a while, and as long as we have at least two people who are actually willing to try hard to keep the club alive, I think we have a chance.

In addition, I now have at least another semester to work on it, since 1) my professor in my senior seminar asked me to drop the class, and 2) I only just found out that I apparently need a minor to graduate. (Oy vey, I'm going to be an undergraduate forever, and I'm not even majoring in something considered difficult like engineering!)

Monday, February 2, 2009

Got milk?

Whoever said procrastination doesn't pay? I just earned almost 500 dollars by not sending out my tax return as soon as I finished it, because today I got a 1098-T form in the mail. Filing with the 1040EZ form like I've always done, I didn't need the 1098-T form, but I decided to try redoing my tax using the 1040A form and see if it made a difference. And it did. :D So my day just got better!

Yesterday, I was rushing to work a little bit late and slipped going down a flight of icy stairs. Of course, I have leet ninja skills, so instead of falling and breaking my tailbone, I grabbed for the banister and skidded the tops of my feet over the edge of the stairs. I slid down about six steps before my arm caught in the leg of the banister and tried to bend my forearm in half. I was very glad I drink enough milk to have strongish bones. I was also very glad that I don't weigh too terribly much. I was also glad I hurt my arm instead of landing on my tailbone and not being able to sit down for a week.

The funniest part is that the most visible part of this "injury" is from where my sleeve slid up as I skidded down, so the freezing cold metal banister rubbed against my bare skin. And of course, when I stopped sliding, I was in shock for a few seconds, so I didn't take my arm off right away. But it's still hardly visible. It's not fair, man! The whole point of hurting yourself is so you can have fun telling people about your wild and exciting adventures that led you to them! Like my little sister, who smacked herself in the face with a tennis racket! SHE gets to tell people silly stories about why her face is all swollen, but me? Nooo, I have to suffer in obscurity! Pity meeeee!