i wanna go back to wes before winter break. when's a good time?

so thanksgiving was fun. food- family- and friends-tastic. went to decordova again, with awill this time (friend from highschool... the wes email nickname version of course). decided to take a tour of the current exhibit, thinking "maybe we'll learn some cool stuff about the artist." no. it was an "interactive tour," meaning, "i don't have a fucking clue any more than you do about this stuff, so i'm gonna ask what you all think about it and under the guise of not putting ideas in anyone's heads about what these pictures mean i'll ask leading questions to get you to use words like 'surreal.'" so we left the tour and looked at the pretty pictures ourselves. the exhibit is this amazing post-apocolyptic photo-painting set of pictures based loosely on the little prince. all should come check it out. tomorrow awill and i will check out the new high school. it's fun doing all this stuff i don't think to do normally but bring other people to when they visit from out of town. ok, i go to decordova plenty on my own too. but it's more exciting to see how many of my friends i can get in for free by various means.


15 G's of awesome

i've told some about Lake Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg. it's that lake somewhere in western massachusetts that, aside from having the longest place name in the country (45 letters, typically), is one of those lakes you know about growing up in the bay state. and everyone knows what the name means:

"you fish on your side of the lake, i'll fish on my side of the lake, and nobody fishes in the middle."

well, it doesn't actually mean that, but i'll tell my kids one day just like my dad told me. only i'll probably add a qualifier because i'm bad at dishonesty. not that my dad knew he was wrong or anything.

so today the New York Times has an article entirely devoted to Lake Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg! (you say it basically how it's spelled) so i thought i should share it with all of you.

gadgets and doodads

so before the whole finger-slicing incident, i was thinking about a sort of ode to my office post. so here it is, plus other stuff.

so my automatic answer to "what do you do?" is "oh i work at an afterschool program, and then i help out at an office, and i do some subcontracted programming for my mom." i realized this isn't very descriptive and to some extent does a disservice to my office job. so:

ode to my office

so i work at wells research and design, which makes optical testing equipment. like to test cell phone camera lenses and stuff. my boss invents the stuff, so he's one of those cool scatterbrained inventor types. he also has a daughter at wes, but that's another story.

so at the office, there are wicked cool doodads all over the place. like irises (like the one in your eye, only mechanical). and tons of stuff whose use i could never begin to guess. sometimes i go in and unpack a box full of the kind of doodads the company sells, and then re-pack it into differently sized boxes. sometimes my boss and i take measurements using the equipment. there are razor blades all over the place, cuz my boss likes to use them to cut stuff. well, xacto knives come in handy to make some stuff i guess, and cut labels and stuff; the blades help in the opening boxes and cutting tape. and slicing fingers, as i'm sure you all know. they add a sense of adventure and badassocity to the office setting. sometimes i sweep floors and call "remove this number from you fax-spam list" numbers, which isn't the most fun part. but sometimes i get to wear cool uv-blocking safety goggles and glue stuff together with cool uv-reactive glue that is applied with a syringe. it's no ordinary office job.

christmas came early!

i mean, sort of... kindofnotreally...

i got a new cell phone! it came with a new number, because now it's on a family share plan. it's a 781 number (middle boston suburbs area), but that's a small price to pay to not have to pay for my own whole plan. email me for the new number. i mean, email anyway, if ya know me. anyhoo, i <3 my new phone! it's an LG-VX4600 flip phone. verizon. this means it has no camera, but it does have a huge color screen and way fancier ringtones than the old phone. also, it won't turn off randomly due to battery slippage. also it's way small. and i think it vibrates. and i can make calls from my own house! which is kind of in a dead zone. and it does that thing where the same person can have a few different numbers, so i don't have to designate something as "someone cell" and another one as "someone home." this may all be standard, but it's new to me, so i'm excited. so gimme a call! ... once you have my number. or at home if you have that number.


well it's a damn good thing i went to the naked school

i've done a couple of dumb things lately, so i figured i ought to share them with the world so we can all laugh at and learn from my mistakes...

lesson 1: don't wear a white built-in bra tank top to hot yoga.
fortunately, the whole idea is to focus on yourself, so i can only assume the other people there were not focusing on me. and hopefully the teacher didn't notice...?

lesson 2: don't cut duct tape with a straight razor against thin air (instead of, say, a cutting board or something).
so, at my office there are always razor blades lying around, being handy for opening boxes and... um... cutting tape, i guess. well, for cutting anything and everything, actually, even tho there are a couple pairs of scissors around too. but the razors are just so convenient... so, i was using one to cut little strips of duct tape before i peeled it away. until i noticed it was cutting through more than one layer of the tape, and i didn't need that many strips. so then i started peeling before cutting, and sure enough, same thing, only this time the second layer through which i cut was my finger. ouch. then there were no band-aids big enough (don't worry, that's only because the only band-aids there were were those tiny little ones for paper-cuts and nelly's cheek, not because the cut was massive), so i wrapped it in gauze and taped it up. made typing pretty difficult.

lesson 3: don't forget about voter fraud just because it's november 3rd.
air america radio keeps talking about ohio, and that recount nader's trying to get. indymedia.us is covering this too. but remember 2000's ohio? what was it called again? oh yeah--florida. and there are problems there this year, too. not that i ever really thought there wouldn't be. and as the article's author says, the chances of an actual change in the official election result are slim. i'll just have to find solace in the fact that kerry wouldn't have been that much different. well, john kerry wouldn't have. a certain other kerry would have been *amazing*, especially if she appointed me veep or something. i watch the west wing, i know how to run a country =D


dubya's a uniter!

he's at least uniting the left with the rest of the world, especially the Netherlands it seems. but, as the bbc noted, the divisions between the u.s. left and the right--whose picture page seems to be having the same trouble sorryeverybody was having a week or so ago (hey, maybe we're not as different as we think... at least when it comes to web hosting)--seems to only be growing. i guess we can't have everything...



mars has lutefisk, too! proving that nordic culture is the best ever. werd, the vikings even discovered mars first! or, for some reason, some nasa scientist thought it was a good idea to name an extraterrestrial rock after jellified fish product. the latter is more plausible, but i can't tell which explanation is cooler...
anyhoo, go norway!

wow, everyone has papers to write huh...

i can tell by all the hits the blog's gotten today... so, to fulfill my duty as person-with-no-homework, i'll post something to keep y'alls occupied while you try to avoid doing your own work. it might be boring tho; i haven't felt so creative lately. and i haven't been up to much.

let's see... i did see i <3 huckabees again, and it was still just as good. go see it when you don't have work. also i saw polar express. that was with leap; i wouldn't go see it on my otherwise. turns out it kinda sucks. i mean, the kids enjoyed it, but it was pretty crappy at entertaining adults. none of those jokes that only grown-ups get like in shrek; just bad acting by a bunch of cartoon kids with adult voices. and almost every voice was tom hanks, and it was pretty obvious too. the book was way better, this time because they had to add crap to the movie because the book was too short. then there were the roller-coaster type scenes, which belong in imax movies but not regular ones.

so i've been updating eurotrip04 with exciting stories and such. go look! and comment! pictures are always fun...

ooh also--sick of dumb wespeaks? well here's some real news to keep ya amused.

hm... sorry... still not much exciting to tell i guess. maybe soon.


culture shock

so, i knew it would happen; i guess i should really be impressed that it took so long. i only have my hippie parents and their hippie friends to blame for that one.

everyone knows wesleyan is a bubble. you leave (the way i see it, the school put me into forced academic retirement when they gave me that diploma), and words like queer and privilege and hegemony and problematic either have completely different meanings or are no longer part of the lexicon. in some ways, i really feel like i'm in a different world than my coworkers.

so yesterday (friday) one of my fellow leap teachers is talking about her ex-girlfriend. granted, this is massachusetts, home of everything that's wrong with the moral fabric of this nation, so i shouldn't have been surprised. but this was like some sort of double culture shock because i was so used to living in this radical world i wasn't sure how far left the rest of the world was. (yes, that's kinda messed up, but... just keep reading) so, that was way cool in an oh, maybe i don't have to worry about being the crazy leftist at work, way. yay. not that i was that worried; leap teachers are cool.

so today we had this conference/day of workshops thing that almost everyone went to. there's this training hours requirement thing that it filled. the first workshop was about how kids make friends and how their friendships work. it was so-so. then was the keynote speaker. then 5 of us girls went to a workshop about women working with women, basically discussing how all that middle school-type backstabbing/competitiveness/bullshit still happens between grown-up women. which is true, tho we actually all agreed we don't do it at leap. but, still valuable stuff to talk about.

then we had lunch. yummy.

then i went to this workshop on character education through cooperative recreation (learning social skills through playing games). it was really cool, and interesting, and valuable. only, the guy blamed a lot of the problems in schools on teachers' unions. now, the conference was full of after-school program teachers, most of whom raised their hand when asked during the keynote address whether we make enough money. the owner of our program was there so none of us raised our hand, though we already all make more than minimum wage so we're probably doing better than most of them. so, here we are mostly making shit for money, and this presenter (who is a professional presenter/inventor/something, not a caregiver) is shitting all over unions. grr. also, dose of reality. not that tuesday/wednesday wasn't that already... but still. fuckin' reality, why you gotta be so crappy?

so then we went out for a drink! yay work socializing! i'd heard so much about it from KPd, it was nice to finally get in on that action. well, kinda; i still had to drive home, as did almost everyone else, and my coworkers aren't as big lushes... but i heard stories about parties in the past...

so, we got to talking about the election, and i was so relieved to hear all but one of the people there had voted for kerry. or not voted at all. of course, we're all registered in massachusetts, so not a big deal anyway. but, the one who hadn't voted was the very same who is queer, and claimed she would have voted for bush! i didn't get a chance to ask why cuz she was at the other end of the table. i'm really interested. because i don't understand how a person could think, "well, you don't think i deserve the same rights as straight people, but you're totally qualified to lead this country." she's still a great person, but... pwhat?

so, it turns out, sometimes the real world makes less sense than the crazy leftist/radical/PCU. or i'm too wesleyanified to understand the real world. sigh; i really gotta move to the wesghetto in nyc.



this post actually has very little to do with voting, and a lot to do with this past weekend. which rawked. hardcore.

friday: good ol' wesleyan, once again

as the VICTORY PARADE!!! was pushed back to saturday, when i definitely couldn't make it, i decided against skipping out on becca and instead, as originally planned, drove down to wes after work on friday. amoxicilin is god, so i felt better enough to go out for a bit. so we headed over to sweigle's house (not outhouse... oops). i learned to play speed scrabble, and even won once! almost twice... then everyone else i knew showed up too, and there was much rejoicing (yaaay).

so then i was all innocently chattin w/ becca and nathan, and some dude comes over (lookes vaguely dke-ish, but i make no actual assumptions. i'll call him sketchyguy) and initiates the following conversation:

sketchyguy: are you wearing a bra under that sweater?
me: yes.
sketchyguy: are you wearing a shirt under the sweater?
me: yes.
sketchyguy: are you single?
me [mostly lying after this point]: no.
sketchyguy: are you in love?
me: um.... what kind of question is that? no.
sketchyguy: well, be an adult and have an affair.
me [turning completely towards becca and nathan]: so anyways...

so, yes, very sketchy. KPd told me later i should have decked him. maybe if i hadn't limited myself to one drink (for the cheat!) i would have, but i must admit i'm pretty pacifist.

so then there was more schmoozing, and then i left to play settlers with dave and beth and desan. i lost hardcore.

saturday: the jerz

(does anyone else call it that? or did i make it up?)

so then i drove on down to jersey. at la casa de KPd, i chilled with the d's for a while, and then with them plus TMQ, and then KPd and KGd and TMQ and i went to the meadowlands, by way of mickey-d's (mmm... chicken and fries and soda...). so we chilled in the car eating in the parking lot, and then we got in line for the GREEN DAY CONCERT!!!

while in line, we got to see a bunch of kids (high school age, i think) become corporate tools ("everyone on this side shout verizon! and then you all shout samsung!") the line was long, but mostly populated by people in the front floor section, so we made it to the front of the rear floor section pretty easily. we waited around and read people's text messages to the crowd (kids these days...) and then we saw the first opening band, sugar... something or other. they sing that bouncing off the walls again song. the girls around us were really into it. they were decent. then more standing around, then new found glory, who were good but didn't play any songs i knew of theirs. then more waiting. then...


[as the stage decorations are getting set up... there's an ok picture of it here, the first one]
me [noting the big red curtains and flags]: dude, it's like the fuckin' third reich up there!
KPd: that's... horrible
me: well i'm sure it's done ironically
[as the music starts and the flags start to rise]
KPd: dude you're totally right
green day: plays 'american idiot'

amazing. as were the rest of the songs. and billy joe (NOT billy joel. billy joe. armstrong. of green day.) is *amazing.* works the crowd like a master. ohmygod. so the whole show is awesome-tastic. and there are fireworks. and lots of lights. and confetti--TWICE! after the first confetti, i was thinking, 'i wish there was more confetti' AND THERE WAS! so, all in all, the show was amazing-tastically awesome.

another plus, the crowd was mostly high school students. well, there were pluses and minuses to this. but most importantly, it meant when they all moshed and crowd-surfed, they weren't big enough to hurt us too badly. i got hit in the head a few times, but luckily have no noticeable bruises. there were other battle scars to other people, but nothing major.

now, the downside of all these high school students being there was that it made all of us (even KGd, i think) feel old. this happened whenever green day played a slow song. y'know how the thing to do is light a lighter and wave it back and forth, and it looks all cool with little flames all over the stadium? so now i guess the thing to do (at least for the young'uns) is that, only with one's cell phone instead of a lighter. this was very disconcerting. flame, cool (if dangerous). glow sticks, fine (esp. b/c of the not dangerous part). cell phones, HELL NO! it was very weird and scary. that's what made us feel old. and way cooler than high school students (at least, i felt that way).

so all in all, amazing concert. then, we went to the diner. or, a diner. how... jersey. apparently. in any event, pretty cool. yay all-night diners. then, back to la casa d. and to bed.

Sunday: back on home

the sun was shining the day i drove out of jersey, and i made good fuckin' time.

after breakfast and leaving later than intended, i made it home in just about 3:45, including a break. i guess not driving in the city makes everything way faster. lack of traffic helps too. so i was home in time to chill w/ the little bro for a bit, and then out to dinner w/ the family before sending t-bot back to school.

then dad and i went to see team america: world police (america--FUCK YEAH!), which was pretty good. kind of amazingly funny to people on both sides of the political spectrum, it seemed.

so, i'm pretty sure i'll be goin' on down to the 19 fountain election shindig. someone'll have to tape the daily show for me... but what with everyone at wes, i bet there'll be plenty of joking and revelry. and hopefully kerry/edwards will win. and it sounds like a lot of people will be too drunk to notice/care by that point. not me, for once, but i bet other people. and then we'll go protest his policies too. but maybe he'll listen a little better. only a little.

so, in conclusion, vote.