Thursday, April 30, 2009

Homeworks

My ten-page research paper turned out fairly well. I was a few minutes late to class because my satanic printer is acting up again, but it's not a big deal. My class was in the same building as the Writing Center, which lets students print papers up to 25 pages for free, so I jumped in there before class. I was up all of last night as well working on preparing a five-minute skit for German class with Quinby with Peter's help. We had some fun with movie magic, despite the fact that the camera battery kept dying and we had to stay as quiet as possible because the landlord was sleeping. We were unsuccessful at being quiet, though, and I think Peter's going to get reprimanded by his landlord today. They get along okay, though, and it's not like he does stuff like this a lot, so I don't think he'll get kicked out or anything like that. But I still feel bad.

Here's the clip we showed in class. I'm working on another version with English subtitles and maybe slightly better (less rushed) video editing, and also some bloopers at the end. Also, the reason I was kind of whispering towards the end is because it was four in the morning....

video

Incidentally, I loathe whoever thought it would be a good idea to spend ten cents making firewire cables and then to sell them for thirty dollars each. That's sick and cruel, especially to poor college students who are desperate to upload videos to their computer so they can edit their final project in the few hours between sunrise and class. Pricks.

So, a week or two ago, I took a test in German that I didn't feel very prepared for. Afterwards, I felt pretty lame about it because I didn't feel like I did very well. Today, the teacher finally handed the test back. Yeah, I got 106%. Dad, what was that you were saying about students with colored hair never doing well in class? Mwaha.

...Of course, now I've jinxed it, and my final grade is going to suck....

So, I have a history lesson and a half, then I have to take my history final tomorrow, and I have an Icebox meeting at eleven, and after I finish that, I'm done, and I have a week before I have to start taking finals. I still can't decide whether I want to read my book first or log onto World of Warcraft (which I haven't even opened for three weeks) or go do something fun with Pete. (Like rock climbing or a movie, Gohr, you perv! Get your mind out of the gutter!) On second thought, maybe the first thing I'll do is get some sleep. Some nice restful sleep, where I'm not feeling stressed because I should be working instead of sleeping, and I won't have to wake up freaking out because I slept through class or my alarm or the time when I had wanted to wake up to finish my homework before class. Or work.

It's been so disgustingly hot here the last few days. Except for a few little places where the snow was piled high on the north side of buildings, all the snow is gone. It's only about 70 degrees outside, but it's dry and the sun is beating down relentlessly, so it feels like it's way hotter. In addition, all of the windows in my room face south, so the sun is coming straight in about 20 hours a day (I have no curtains, and the blinds only seem to help so much), and my room heats up like a furnace, even with all the windows open. I would swear my room is at least 90, and much more on my bed (which is up near the ceiling because I sleep on the top bunk).

Trudging down to campus yesterday was strange, retracing the steps I remember taking all winter, bundled up and burying my face in the fur that ringed the hood of my knee-length parka, a ring of white building up around my face and chest where my breath froze moments after I exhaled. Yesterday, I trudged the very same path, head bowed once again, this time in an attempt to shield my eyes from the cruel sun, sweat streaming down my back. And I have no cooler or air conditioning or even a fan in my room. :( I'm tempted to go buy a fan, but I have less than two weeks until I get to leave for Seward anyway. I'll miss Pete a lot, but I like Seward WAY better than Fairbanks. No contest.

Hmm, sorry if this post is a little negative. I've had way too little sleep lately, and I'm a bit stressed and frustrated. But that's to be expected. It seems so weird to me that I'm actually looking forward to finals week because that's when I'll have less stress. How backwards is that?!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Spring Fest Weekend

I don't actually have time to be updating my blog right now, but I'm going to anyway. It's the end of the semester, when everything is due at once, and I have a ten-page research paper due tomorrow morning that I haven't even started on yet.

This past weekend was Spring Fest, which is a time of year when Friday classes are canceled so everyone can "relax" (aka "get drunk") before finals. There were a lot of events on campus going on between Thursday and Saturday, and on Thursday night, there was a free magic show put on by a magician from Chicago, Illinois. Peter and I went, of course. It was a lot of fun. Some of his tricks weren't all that impressive and I knew a bunch of them already, but he had a couple really good ones, and he was a good enough comedian that the show was fantastic anyway.

I called my mom up Friday afternoon to see if she had a good recipe for garlic chicken pizza (I promised Peter I'd cook him dinner and asked what he wanted and that was his request), but she was busy cooking dinner, so I had a nice long conversation with my dad. Dad loves magic, so I told him about the magician from the previous evening and told him a few of the tricks the guy had done, including one where he made a ring disappear from a girl's finger and appear attached to a keychain inside a zippered pouch in his wallet. Dad was in the room with Mom while I talked to Dad about the trick. She could hear only one side of the conversation: she knew it was me on the phone, and then she heard Dad talking about a ring, and she flipped out because she thought I had gotten engaged. Already.

Silly Mommy. Getting engaged two weeks after meeting someone is the sort of thing Mormons do, not Lint Monkeys. But it's fun messing with her head anyway.

Friday, we were going to make the garlic chicken pizza, but we didn't because just before we started to make it, we found out there was a free barbecue on campus, and what kind of college student turns down free food? Well, in Fairbanks, most of them, actually. There are about 8600 students at UAF, to my knowledge, and of those 8600, there were about a dozen people at this barbecue. Free food! What the heck, man? Burgers, hot dogs, chicken, potato salad, chips, soft drinks, all free to any student on campus! And it was in the parking lot of the student dorms, so all they had to do was walk out their back door and get it!

Perfect illustration of how nobody in Fairbanks ever wants to do ANYTHING. Unless beer is involved. You can usually get a little more participation if there's beer involved. Not much, though.

Incidentally, Friday was also the day for voting for positions in the student government for next year. Peter and I both voted, and apparently, 30% more students voted this year than last year. Want to know what percent of students voted? 6.1%! Seriously, man... even I voted, and I usually have nothing to do with politics (although I prefer them on a very small level over a national level). Six percent? Why does no one here care? There was no competition at all for senate seats. In fact, of the 20-ish student senate seats, I think about five of them are still empty.

I also question the way the votes are counted. I don't think student votes are actually counted the way they should be. In editing the newspaper articles about the election, I read that the final question, "Should we tack on ANOTHER $20 fee to all students per semester?" passed almost unanimously, which is interesting because everyone I know who actually voted said they voted against it. In addition, the article said that no votes had been counted for either of the two people running for the Concert Board and so they would have to have a senate meeting to determine how they would handle that. Interesting again, since I know for sure that at least two people did vote for someone for that position.

Not that much of anyone on campus would care much even if it were proven that the student senate threw out all the votes on campus except one or two of the people who "really mattered." Would anyone on campus protest or do anything about it? You might have a small handful of people who decided to get all up in arms... but this is Fairbanks. Nobody cares. About anything. It's depressing.

Oh well. That aside, time for a funny story. My professor for Ice Box (the lady in charge of the student journal I edit for), Cindy, is really close friends with Peter. In fact, so is my English professor from last semester, Mike, who lives with Cindy. I spent Friday morning with Peter, and then he dropped me off at class with Cindy. I leaned over to kiss him good-bye, and when I turned around, there was Cindy, waving at us through the window. It was hilarious--we kind of felt like we'd been caught making out by our parents or something. He hopped out of the car and gave her a hug and we talked for a bit, then Peter left and Cindy and I continued on to class, and she spent a fair portion of class talking about how wonderful Peter was and how she sort of adopted him and how nice a guy he is and how he sometimes helps her train her horses. Then she said we were welcome to come over and help with the horses the next day if we would like. Heck YES! Anything to do with horses and I'm there!!!


So Peter and I drove out to Cindy's place Saturday afternoon. The snow is starting to melt, so we spent almost all our time there shoveling the manure (they called it "biomass") that was showing up as the snow melted.


Cindy has two horses, Sam and Mattie. Both of them were mistreated, so she's trying to train them to like people again. She's very good with them, but they get ornery. Well, Sam gets ornery. Mattie gets mean. At one point, as Peter was pushing a wheelbarrow of "biomass" through Mattie's side of the pen, Mattie shoved him and then tried to bite him. He managed to get out of the way enough that she only got his shirt (she made a decent-sized hole in it where she bit it, too).


I didn't get too close to Mattie. We were working mostly on Sam's side of the pen. I did get to pat Mattie once and give her treats (Cindy said we say "ears up," and only give her treats when she has her ears up and doesn't look angry) and she seemed to like me okay, considering I was new. Sam seemed to like me too, mainly because he liked to push me around. I kept trying to pet his nose because most of the horses I've gotten to pet seemed to like that. But apparently, Sam has some kind of dominance issues, because he kept picking on me, shoving my hand out of the way and pushing me around. He didn't seem to like being pet so much. According to Cindy, Sam isn't mean the way Mattie can be, but he gets very ornery, and he likes pushing the line to see how much he can get away with. After I gave Sam some treats and decided to go back to shoveling poo--I mean, biomass--I turned to say something to Peter, and Sam decided to head-butt me in the back. That punk! Rawr! (He didn't butt me hard--just enough to say, "Haha, I can push you around!")


I had a blast, even though Peter and Cindy kept apologizing because all we were doing was shoveling. I love manual labor like that, and I love anything to do with horses, even if it is just shoveling their manure. It was a wonderful break from schoolwork.

Cindy has a big poodle named Jeeter as well. It doesn't have the typical poodle haircut, and it's the fluffiest-looking animal I've ever seen. He's enormous, and he's still just a puppy, so he's a big fluffy ball of energy.


After that, we went home, washed the horse muck off ourselves, and started making garlic chicken pizza. My roommate Amy thought it was so cool when I spun the pizza dough around in the air like they do in movies. But I spread it out on the pizza tray before I remembered "Oh yeah, we were supposed to let it rise." So we spread it out on the tray and then covered it and let it rise there, and instead of punching it down, we just put the toppings on it without patting it down or anything and ate it. On the second pizza, we did it right, letting it rise, punching it down, and then spreading it out. Interestingly enough, we decided the first one tasted better because the dough was light and fluffy, where the second one tasted a little too thick and bready.

Hmmm, what else? Oh yes, we also dyed the Lint Monkey's hair again. The color is supposedly "ultraviolet," but it looks royal blue. In fact, when Peter wore his royal blue University Equestrian Network sweatshirt to Cindy's place and it matched my hair, she asked if we had done that intentionally. Silly Cindy. What do we look like, nerds?

....Oh yeah.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

okay okay okaaay

We made pumpkin cinnamon chocolate chip cookies the other day. They tasted really great, and four people made the entire batch of 30-some cookies disappear in less than 24 hours.

The schoolwork load has been insane lately, I guess because it's getting towards the end of the semester. Frankly, I would like nothing more than to take a break and curl up on the couch with Peter and a good book (I want to read the next two books in the Dark Elf Trilogy really bad!), but I have to get three history lessons done by tomorrow night so I can take the final Friday, then I have a ten-page paper due Tuesday (which I thought was due this Thursday and almost died from relief when I heard I was wrong), an oral German exam next Thursday, and another paper due the day after that. And, of course, I really want to spend time with Peter, but it's a little distracting when he studies here (not that that stops us). Fortunately, in a week and a half, the workload is going to drop drastically and I'll have time to kick back and relax. Maybe I'll even be able to find an excuse to get out of Fairbanks for a little while. Not like I'm going to run off for a week or two and skip all my finals, but I want to get out of the city limits.

Fairbanks is the first place I've ever lived where I've actually disliked the area. I think it's because it's also the first place I've ever lived (besides Antwerp) where there aren't mountains nearby. Fairbanks is in a valley, but it's in the center of a valley so enormous that you can only barely see the mountains on the horizon on very clear days, and they look teeny, despite the fact that they're some of the biggest in America. Besides that, I really like rain and humidity, and Fairbanks is a very dry desert. The snow makes it look pretty, but when there's not snow, everything is kind of a dull dusty grayish-brown. None of the trees are very big, and they're shaped kind of like toothpicks. (I'm not sure what kind of tree they are. Birch, maybe?) Besides that, it's a bigger town than I like to live in. And it gets disgustingly cold in the wintertime, but disgustingly hot in the summertime. So after I graduate, I definitely want to live somewhere that's not this town.

Anyway, that aside...

I've decided to write my paper next week on the word "ain't." Well, that and "you," and split infinitives, and ending sentences with prepositions, and all the other things that are logically perfectly acceptable in English but that English teachers preach against. Split infinitives and not ending sentences with prepositions I know are because people were trying to superimpose Latin grammar on English, which just doesn't work. (English infinitives are two words, but Latin infinitives are only one, so OF COURSE you can't split them. But it makes perfect logical sense to split them in English.) But I still can't figure out why "ain't" and "you" are completely banned from formal settings. Why ARE people frowned on for saying "ain't"? It's a perfectly legitimate contraction for "am not." Guess I have some research to do. I doubt I'll find much, though, for some reason.

Oh hey, also, I finally got my laundry done, so I have clean clothes now! :D Yay! I don't like doing my laundry, so I tend to put it off as long as possible, but it's so nice putting on clean clothes. Actually, I picked up my room a bit too, which is also a nice feeling. I would say having a clean room helps me concentrate, but it obviously doesn't or I would be doing my history instead of writing this. Except the only reason I'm writing this is because someone requested I update, since I haven't in a while. So yes. Here, have an update.

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

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Mushrooms

K, so...

I've been hanging out with this guy Peter a lot in the last week. My mom, of course, really likes to interrogate guys I'm interested in to see if they're "worthy" or something... (Parents are funny!) So I called her up while Peter was around and put her on speakerphone so she could interrogate him/embarrass me. But then, after the interrogation, Peter took the phone and turned off the speaker and went downstairs to talk to Mom and refused to tell me what he said to her! My guess was that he wanted to hear some funny kid stories that he could bring up and tease me about later just to throw me off, because he's a punk like that!

Either way, we've had way too much fun hanging out this week (if that's possible), and today we went on an actual, formal date. Well, "semi-formal." He's a biology major, and he really enjoys mycology (study of mushrooms). Apparently, the department was doing some kind of super-fancy "Survivalist dinner," which was this meal of seven courses of mushrooms!

Peter showed up wearing a tie, and the first thing he did was give me a bunch of tulips! I felt a little bit silly, to be honest, because I wasn't really sure what to do with them. Oh, right, put them in water. Right. Do I have a vase? No, of course I don't. So my hot chocolate mug is now doubling as a tulip vase.


It was a totally awesome dinner! There were--I'm not kidding--four glasses per person, and at least eleven different pieces of silverware! The servings were tiny, but with seven courses, I was too stuffed to finish the last two, even though the dessert was chocolate truffle cheesecake.

They seated us at a table with two other ladies, and we all had fun trying to remember the proper etiquette for fancy dinners that most Americans don't really have regularly. If ever.


After the meal, Peter stayed seated until almost everyone had left the room. Then he said, "Okay... do you want to know what I said to your mom the other day?"

"Um... YES! I've only been bugging you to tell me for the last four days!"

"Well... I asked for her permission, and your dad's, to ask you to be my girlfriend. And they said yes. So... would you be willing to be my girlfriend?"


I'm the happiest person on the planet right now.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Oops



I fail at cooking and cleaning. I managed to break my lucky Ramen pot today. I guess it was jealous of the fact that I cooked healthy food yesterday.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Foudroyant?

At the club fair thing at the beginning of the semester, I manned a table for Icebox, the student journal I help edit. The lady who's in charge of Icebox is also in charge of the University Equestrian Network, the horse club on campus. Therefore, the tables for those two clubs were right beside each other. The guy who was manning the table for the UEN was a blond pony-tailed guy named Peter. Nice guy, very smiley, and fun to talk to. Of course, I told him about juggling club and showed him a few tricks. Then the club fair ended and I didn't see Peter again...

Until Friday, when he showed up to juggling club out of the blue. Seriously, I was talking to Abe, heard someone behind me, turned around, and there he was. I didn't even recognize him at first. I could tell his face was familiar, but couldn't for the life of me remember where I had seen him before. I taught him to juggle, and he picked it up pretty quickly. Time wore on, and people came and went, and I started to get thirsty, so I said, "Man, I would sell my soul for a strawberry milkshake right now."

"Ohhhh, that sounds really good! Let's go get one. Right after practice," he said. So at nine, after everyone else had left, Peter and I left to get strawberry milkshakes or ice cream or something. But we couldn't think of any place in Fairbanks that serves ice cream except Hot Licks, which is closed for the winter. So we just went to Fred Meyer's (or maybe it was Safeway) and got ice cream and root beer and went over to his place to make root beer floats.

We ended up staying up all night having root beer floats, watching videos on Youtube, talking about Dungeons and Dragons (he has the D&D 4.0 books!), dancing, and doing martial arts. It was pretty epic, actually--he's really big into both dancing and martial arts, so we would be sparring and he would have me in a headlock, and then suddenly he would twirl me around and start salsa dancing. Whaaat!

He finally drove me home in the late afternoon Saturday so I could get my history done. When I walked in, Amy looked seriously relieved to see me. I talk to my roommates rarely enough that I figured it doesn't make a difference whether I'm here or not, but apparently she and Amanda were a little worried when I didn't come home the night before. My cell phone number was on the fridge, and Amy said she was planning on calling at eight if I hadn't come home by then. She went on to tell me about Amanda's birthday dinner the night before. Amanda's birthday was actually Easter, but she was having birthday dinners with friends on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. (I had been invited, but I don't really like the crowd Amanda hangs out with.) Amy said the dinner went terribly and Amanda cried her eyes out afterward. Out of the 26 people who went, only five of them gave her cards, two of them gave her gifts, and nobody paid for her dinner or got her a cake or sang to her or even proposed a toast. The boy she had a huge crush on hadn't even said hello to her, much less happy birthday. So Amy decided to bake her a cake using the recipe on the back of the Hershey's Cocoa box. I offered to help. Amanda drives me crazy, but she's a decent person, and I don't like her being sad.

So we made her a surprise birthday cake, and I holed myself up in my room to do my history. But I didn't get very far before Peter started calling to see if I was done so we could play some more. At almost the same time, Amy informed me that Amanda was going out again with her friends and she (Amy) was staying home to watch Hoodwinked and wanted to know if I'd watch it with her. So I asked if it was okay to invite Peter over too (to which she said "of course!"), and he came over just as Amanda was leaving with her friends. Before we put the movie in, we goofed off and dyed the Lint Monkey's hair blue while we watched some Jeff Dunham stuff on Youtube. (How can you not like Achmed? I can't believe Amy hadn't heard of him!)

The movie was great, but since we'd started it so late, Amy went to bed right after it ended. Peter and I stayed up to watch the extras and were dancing when Amanda came home. I wished her happy birthday (it actually was her birthday for real by that time) and asked how her party had been. She came in my room, sat down on the floor, and proceeded to cry her eyes out. She was a little vague about the details--she was crying too hard to be clear on anything but the fact that her friends treated her badly and she was hurt and her birthday dinner had been terrible and she wasn't talking to her friends ever again. We hugged her and talked to her and generally tried to make her feel better and ended up staying up with her until maybe five in the morning.

When I woke up, Amanda was already awake and sounded much better (sleeping off the alcohol may have helped). It was a gorgeous day today--fifty degrees outside! I was super excited to finally be able to go outside in a t-shirt, and a lot of other people seemed to be thinking along the same lines--stretched out on park benches (there's still a good amount of snow on the grass) in shorts and sleeveless shirts. I went to juggling practice, but counting myself, there was a whole one person there, so I only stuck around for 45 minutes before I went in to work. It was a pretty short workday too, actually, so I got to go home early.

I was looking forward to sleeping, but I still had to finish my history homework. So I got started on that, but then Peter called again and said he was bored. I told him he was welcome to come over, but I'd be doing homework and might be boring. He came over anyway. Interestingly enough, I've been unable to focus on this lesson and get it done for two weeks, but with Peter here, I got it done in an hour because he kept saying, "Stop talking! Hurry up and get your homework done so we can play!"

Amanda was off with friends again, but Amy said while I was at work, Amanda had cut into the cake, so we could have some. It was pretty much the best cake I've ever tasted. I don't know what we did right to it, but WOW it was amazing! (It was probably Amy's frosting, because it sure wasn't my doing!) Apparently Amanda was thrilled about it. Amy said she heard Amanda making phone calls and telling everyone all about how her roommates baked her a wonderful cake for her birthday. I was glad her birthday was salvageable.

I'm so jealous of Peter. I spent all day in my office in the Wood Center, and he got to spend the day outside training horses in the beautiful weather! That's not fair at all!

That said, I'm seriously sleep-deprived, and I have class in five hours, so I'm going to go zonk out.

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

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

I've found new meaning to life...

I've never before read a book by R.A. Salvatore, although I've heard of him many times. He's supposed to be a really good fantasy author, but then again, Orson Scott Card was supposed to be a really good science fiction author, and I hated Ender's Game. But Quinby pretty much insisted I read The Dark Elf Trilogy, which consists of three books: Homeland, Exile, and Sojourn.

I started the book late last night after I finished the Black Cauldron series, by Lloyd Alexander. I'm already over halfway through the first book in the trilogy, and I have to confess, I'm having trouble putting it down. For the first time in what seems like ages, I actually wake up easily because I can't wait to read my book before class. Then I sit impatiently hoping for class to end so I can read some more. (I'm not in middle school anymore and am no longer daring/dumb enough to try and hide my book under my desk and read through class.)

The immersion in the book is pretty insane. Salvatore's done a masterful job (so far) giving just enough details to exercise your imagination without leaving you confused. He describes society more than characters or places, which results in more proper nouns with more apostrophes than I normally like to put up with. I hate fantasy books with a learning curve so big that nothing happens for a hundred pages because the author is too busy filling you in on all the nitty-gritty details, and then you can't keep all the proper nouns straight anyway and give up in disgust.

I guess what I really like about it is the fact that this story isn't the tired, cliche fantasy book with a mysterious wizard and an emo half-elf fighter and a big hulking barbarian that rips heads off in battle but outside of battle likes kittens and bunnies. Maybe a bouncy little gnome or something for comic relief. Or a gruff dwarf that's really a softy underneath. Basically, if you want cliche fantasy, read the Dragonlance books. They're good, yes. But they're pretty much the epitome of cheesy D&D fantasy. (Though I have to admit, the scene at the end of the series about the twins was really touching. "Look, Raist! Bunnies!")

...Now I've digressed. What was I saying? Ah yes. Anyway, telling a fantasy story from the point of view of the evil dark elf (drow elf, actually) society is different and fascinating. The drow elves actually have names and personalities and ambitions. Normally, the "good guys" and "bad guys" are very clear in a fantasy novel, and you say from the very beginning, "I hope this character gets a happily ever after, and I hope this character marries this character, but that character is evil and needs to die." And it usually happens that way. In Homeland, at least so far, you can tell, of course, that the main character is the "good guy." But other than that, everyone is just... well, a character, apparently no better or worse than any of the other characters. You can't tell who you want to win or what you want to happen, which makes it very hard to predict just what's going to happen next.

Also, the society is interesting. It's complicated enough that it isn't one-dimensional, evil enough to be obviously evil, but structured enough that you don't end up wondering how they've managed to not wipe themselves out yet. A lot of fantasy authors like to say, "Oh, they're evil, so all they ever think about is how fun it is to torture and murder everything they can," which results in a story that's not very believable. Evil people generally don't consider themselves "evil." They just have different priorities: usually they just place greed, pride, or ambition above honor and chivalry. They don't go around killing everyone just for the fun of it, they just get rid of people who get in their way. (If you intend to be a fantasy writer, you'll do well to remember that, by the way.)

So I have mixed feelings about this book. First of all, I can't believe I put off reading any books by Salvatore for so long. But on the other hand, this was a very good time to discover something that I enjoy so much, since I'm getting frustrated with school, juggling, music, and all my other hobbies. And on the one hand, I'm really glad Quinby insisted I read these books. But on the other hand, now I'm going to have to finish the books and then acquire the sequels, and Salvatore's got like a fifty books out! This is NOT conducive to boring me into doing my schoolwork because there's nothing better to do! How thoughtless!

Harrumph.

That said, I'm going to go back to my book and see what happens next.

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

Monday, April 6, 2009

Nothing is ever easy

Today was another of what is generally called "one of those days." I kind of thought the day sucked and needed to end by noon. And of course, it didn't. It just kept getting worse. But it's the sort of thing I'll look back and laugh on someday, so I'll write about it. Okay, I admit, I'm kind of laughing about it already, because why wait?

Okay, first let me explain how my typical Sunday works. Sundays are the days we put everything together for the newspaper, so I pretty much work from morning till night. What happens is, my boss e-mails me articles to edit and I wake up early, edit them, and e-mail them back to her. At quarter to two, I pack up my laptop and head down to campus for juggling practice, and then when that's over, I go straight in to work and work in the office for the rest of the night.

Today just didn't work.

When I woke up this morning, my computer wouldn't connect to the internet. I spent a very long time trying to fix it, including restarting and even turning it off, unplugging it, and trying to clean out some of the dust that collects at alarming rates (this is the fourth time this school year I've pulled out a chunk the size of a golf ball). Alas, nothing work, so I decided there was something weird going on with the internet in the dorms. I decided to take my laptop down to the Wood Center, get a slice of pizza, and use the wireless internet there.

But first, I edited the one article that I had already, which happened to be an intensely painful, agonizing story to edit. (It took over half an hour to edit this one article that was about half a page long. Twelve-point font, Times New Roman, skipping lines between paragraphs.) So I edited the article, saved it to my thumb drive, packed up my laptop, and headed down to campus.

I reached the Wood Center, pulled on the door, and... it was locked. I checked the sign. Guess what. Wood Center doesn't open till noon on Sundays. Checked my watch. 11:15 a.m. Dangit!

I didn't really feel like going home just in time to turn around and come back, so I decided to go to the library and work there instead. Walked over, and guess what. Closed till 1:00 p.m. on Sundays. Sigh.

So I wandered around doing nothing, reading flyers and whatnot until the Wood Center opened. Finally got in, found a nice table in the corner, set up my laptop, waited ten minutes for it to boot up, and spent 45 minutes trying to get the internet to work on that before I finally gave up. Hoping I could get the articles I need off my boss's computer, I went down to the newspaper office, but of course, I don't have a key for it, and there was no one there to let me in. Not that it matters, since I don't know the password to any of the work computers anyway because I would rather use my archaic laptop than a Macintosh. So I went back to my corner and read a book I'd had the foresight to bring along. When I finished the book (I was nearly done with it anyway), I decided to check the internet again and lo! It worked! But by then, of course, I only had like twenty minutes till juggling practice anyway. I felt bad for getting nothing done this morning, but I tried really hard not to worry about it because seriously, there was nothing I could do about it. (I'd thought about calling my boss's cell phone to tell her, but I don't have her number. So then I thought, "Hey, I'll just look it up on Facebook! ....Oh wait."

So downstairs I went for juggling practice. At least I wasn't the only one there--Casey and Abe showed up. Casey took out his laptop and played a youtube video and said, "Oh hey, Nelson's Nemesis. That looks pretty cool. We should try it." And ten minutes later, he had pretty much mastered the trick while I was still pretty much staring at the video going "Huh?" So I watched the video, and I watched Casey, and I tried and tried and tried and chased the balls all over the building, and of course, Casey tried to help by saying, "Here, watch me, it's easy," which is cute, but really just makes me feel even more hopelessly pathetic. Especially since I've been juggling for four years, and he's been juggling for four months, which makes me feel like I OUGHT to be better than he is, but of course, I'm just plain not.

So I got increasingly frustrated, and just then, Quinby walked into the Wood Center, and here's where I decided I wanted to just slit my wrists with a rusty chainsaw: Without thinking, I called out, "Hey, Quinby! You should come juggle with us so I'm not the worst one here anymore."

AGH!!! What the HECK! Did I SERIOUSLY just say that? Why yes. Yes I did. Hence why Quinby now had a sad look on his face and Casey was cracking up. Ugh! Stupid stupid STUPID! Foot. Mouth. INSERT!

And of course, Quinby was busy, like always, and couldn't stick around, and I felt like a jerk long after he left, and Casey said I'm mean to Quinby all the time, and I said something similar to him last time he came to practice too (something to the effect of how he sucks it up), which made me feel like a TOTAL monster because I like Quinby and don't want to be mean to him at all! And then Casey mastered yet another trick, and I just wanted to go bury my head in the snow and DIE, but I couldn't just say, "Forget this, I'm going to work," because Casey and Abe don't know the locker combination to put the juggling stuff away and didn't want to know it.

So after practice, I went in to work, set up my laptop, got the internet up, pulled the article I'd edited this morning off my thumb drive to e-mail it to my boss, and guess what! The file had somehow gotten corrupted, so I had to edit the entire article again. Ugh!

So I did, but then my laptop decided to be a jerk and refuse to get internet at all anymore, only this time it was the computer's fault, not the campus internet. So I had to put the article on my thumb drive again and use Chris's Macintosh until my laptop decided to behave. But then Chris came in a bit early and didn't have a computer to use, so he had to just sit on the couch and do nothing for a while until I got smart and just e-mailed my boss the few articles I had and took the unedited articles off the computer and onto my thumb drive and went back to my decrepit old hunk of overheating metal, which had decided to be good and connect to the internet again. Finally. But also only intermittently. But either way, it's better than trying to use a Macintosh.

But then I got in trouble because in one of the articles I edited, the author used "email" sometimes and "e-mail" sometimes, so I changed them all to "email," because in the most recent dictionaries, that's how it's spelled. But apparently, in our style guide, it's "e-mail" and I got them confused, so I got verbally reprimanded. Grrrrr, some days I can't do anything right.

Then there were the little things that would normally have been just funny, but today served to add to my mounting frustration: Things like slipping on the ice, messing up the locker combination three times, dropping the juggling clubs on the floor as I got them out of the locker, trying to drink and missing and spilling water all over my face, forgetting a coworker's name even though she's told me over a dozen times....

So by the time I got home from work, I just wanted the day to end. But I couldn't, because there were still two or three articles to edit that hadn't even been written yet, so I had to wait by my computer for my boss to send them to me. Which is fine, but it meant I couldn't just go to sleep and dream of being something besides a clumsy jerk who insults cute boys.

I guess it was all pretty funny, though. And at that point, my day actually started getting better. The internet at home was working fine again, and I had just downloaded the demo version of a game called Spellborn, which I got to play with Rye. More often than not, when I'm frustrated, he's really good about being goofy to try and cheer me up. It usually works, too. When I'm upset, I'd rather have someone distract me than listen to me whine. People who say "getting it off your chest" helps are silly, in my not-so-humble opinion. Then again, maybe I just work differently. Not everyone can be ADHD like me. :P

So yeah. I have decided not to hang myself from a ceiling fan after all. And one other good thing happened today that's definitely worth mentioning: Casey finished making my ring, and it's pretty awesome.



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

Saturday, April 4, 2009

German skit

It's weird how I compose blog posts in my head but then never actually update, but I think I have because I wrote the post, I just didn't actually write it. If that makes any sense.

Na ja.

My friend Quinby and I did a skit in German class. It was a lot of fun, and the class seemed to enjoy it. Maybe it's arrogant of me, but I thought ours was the best of all the skits. One of the skits was just a couple people sitting down, having a picnic, and chatting about something. Another was Jeopardy... with one contestant and categories like "Colors" where the answer would be "milk" or "the sky" and the question would be "What is white?" or "What is blue?" There was one group that acted out the dark knight scene from Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail, but they didn't perform it live in class--they video-taped it and showed the video, and the audio was badly messed up, so we couldn't hear what they said.

Our skit had five characters and only two actors. We made crowns and helms out of pipe cleaners and tin foil, and we switched hats to switch characters. There was an epic battle scene between the knight and the castle guard, and the knight stabbed the queen and said "Ni!" to the king until he fell to the ground and twitched to death (we HAD to have that Monty Python reference in there), and then proposed to the princess, who told him to go jump in a lake. It's a skit idea that I stole from my brother, but it seemed perfect for our assignment, because the vocabulary was pretty easy and it was a little repetitive, so the class could figure out what was going on even if they didn't catch all the dialogue the first time.

So I had five hats and two "swords" that I had to carry to class on the day of the skit, (couldn't wear more than one because of the way they were shaped) and I stopped by Quinby's apartment to walk with him and so that he could help me carry it (it wouldn't have been hard except pipe-cleaner/tin-foil hats are pretty fragile, so I had to be careful), but he had left already (the punk). But his roommate gave me his video camera and asked for a video recording of it, so I got to try and carry his camera in addition to all the hats and swords and my backpack. Nothing broke, though, and now we have a video recording, so it's all good.

If you really want me to, I can put English subtitles on it and put it up on here when Quinby sends me a copy of it.

We have one more skit to perform before the end of the semester. Anyone have any good ideas for it? I was toying with the idea of some kind of deranged cross between Goldilocks and Little Red Riding Hood, but I'm not sure if it would work.