First night I got to see a couple of friends and their awesome 6 month old who is rarely without a big toothless smile on his face. I can only hope for a kid as awesome as him. He even sleeps through the night.
After that it snowed and snowed and snowed some more. I've been stuck at home since Saturday as a result. It's not really a bad thing since I have a lot of work to do over the holidays. So far I've finished No-No Boy, a novel that I have to teach this quarter for an American Ethnic Lit class. Now it's time for exam reading which includes The Deathly Embrace: Orientalism and Asian American Identity, which I've been dying to read.
I've also been appointed to cook/prep for the potluck Christmas dinner which means no fucking way I'm making turkey. Too much pain, too much time, and no one but my younger cousin even likes turkey. My older cousin whose family used to host each year particularly hates it. So we're doing Chinese food and whatever. I guess you could call that fusion even though I don't really fancy fusion restaurants.
Here's what I got planned:
Other people’s contributions so far:
Chinese cake (probably with that gross chestnut cream shit, ugh)
Curry beef brisket
Gai lan with garlic, and oyster sauce
Me to make:
Salad with grated cheese, dried cranberries, sliced almonds, crumbled hard boiled egg, sliced ham
Honey garlic chicken wings
Tomato basil bruschetta
Goat cheese red pepper phyllo pastries
Mixed berry trifle
Surfing FB and seeing all those baby, wedding, vacation, [insert other indicator of personal achievement/luck/success/stability here] photos reminds me of just how stagnant my life is. I haven't traveled overseas in 17 years and don't really have the time, money or travel companions (with compatible schedules or interest) to do it with anyways. We were thinking of going to Thailand, the one place I can maybe afford but now that chaos has erupted there, it's a no go. I did surf onto an old friend's fb page and it looks like she is doing a 180-day round the world honeymoon. How pleasant for her. I live alone in a dark rainy cold city (did I mention I have seasonal affective disorder?) below a couple of noisy racist assholes and the only thing certain about my future is uncertainty. I can barely afford my rent and bills, my department constantly fucks with me by forcing me to swap advisers, and even if I did have a lot of friends in this city, I wouldn't have the time or money to hang out with them. Pretty soon I get to go home for the holidays where my parents will test my patience by nagging at me for trivial things and I will sit in traffic alone trying to visit my happily married friends way on the other side of town. Being the fifth wheel rocks. Oh and if we go out and hang out with other folks, I will inevitably be asked the most annoying question ever. What are you going to do after you graduate?
Well. Let's see. I am on a student visa so I live in a country where I have no rights. At all. Most of the programs that are hiring are in the midwest (or some ridiculously small town) where I refuse to live. But that's okay because I have not published jack shit which will make it really hard to get a job anyways, as does the fact that the university would have to fork out some cash to deal with my visa issues and I doubt we'll be out of this recession by 2010. So what am I going to do after I graduate? To be honest, I don't fucking know and sometimes wonder if I even care anymore.
The other annoying question is where are you going to live after you graduate? Well. Let's see. I have to live where 1. I can find a job 2. I am legally allowed to work 3. I will not have to re-live the racial ignorance that plagued my childhood 4. I will not die of loneliness. I'm not sure that there is such a place.
I have a long day tomorrow and I really don't feel like facing it.
After the panel we went out for a nice lunch where K got to meet my conference buddies. We had Mexican food since most of us (from Washington and Illinois) are deprived of good Mexican grub. That night we went to our awkward department party where food was free but drinks were a huge rip off. It wasn't too long before I wanted to scream. Being confined to a room with a number of people whom I dislike for one reason or another (generally I can sum up as ego, power, race, gender type issues) makes me want to drink heavily, and my Ketel and tonic was $10 so that wasn't practical. Finally we got out of there and reconvened with the other graduate students across the street where an old prof of my joined us. Eventually we called it a night.
Saturday was San Diego Zoo day. The niece and nephew were a lot of fun and almost on their best behavior. K's brother is very...different, even more different than I had imagined and in almost every possible way. Overall it was a really fun day and we got to see koalas, pandas, giraffes, elephants, and a bunch of animals from Asia and Africa that I really couldn't identify or remember the names of. I just remember thinking there is a load of venomous snakes and spiders all over Asia, Africa, and South America and it scared the shit out of me to think about it. Unexpected highlight of the day was the the Asian male tour guide for the tour bus who had this extremely cheery, forcefully gay, lispy style of speech even when he announced really morbid animal facts, e.g. "...and the mother lion lays out in front of the den to prevent predators from completely destroying her helpless young!!!" It was like musical theater meets Lorne Green's New Wilderness (that 80s TV show where you got to see animals up close hunting and ripping the guts out of their prey) and it was delightful. That night was spent hot tubbing and then dining in Little Italy before I met up with some old profs from San Fran for drinks.
Sunday was our last day which we spent touring Old Town. Nice to stroll around in the sun and check out some of the old buildings. Not the most exciting place I've ever been to but perfect place to spend a few hours outdoors before heading to the airport to go home. I miss the sun and warmth already. Pacific Northwest bleh.
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields… — John McCrae
1pm, nearly 40 minutes after I arrived for a bus that is supposed to come every 15 minutes, a bus passes my stop, lets someone off and takes off. Apparently another bus was right behind it, which means they're both so fucking late that they are one behind the other, with probably a third one not too far behind that one. So I had to run like hell to arrive at 1:16pm for my appointment.
Luckily the doctor saw me but if she decided not to I would have been charged for missing an appointment. I am all for taking transit to reduce carbon emissions but it is a gigantic fucking pain in the ass when they are unreliable, especially when (1) it's raining (luckily it wasn't today) (2) when I have an appointment that was difficult to schedule (3) when missing that appointment costs me money that I don't have.
Seattle, you need to get your transit system shit together. Seriously. And about that Prop 1 for the building of a light rail... That should've been approved about 20 years ago.
Then on Friday night there was a gang related shooting leading to the death of a teenager a few blocks from where I catch my bus. Not much talk of youth gang activity around here. Sounds like they need to spend some dollars there to get that issue looked at. I'm not terribly interested in living near an area where I could get caught in the crossfire.
Then yesterday K saw a guy in his mid-30s up on the Aurora Bridge which is across from his office. One moment he was there, the next he was in the Adobe parking lot.
So obviously things are going all to hell, at least in my corner of the world here. I'm going to go out to watch the election with friends up on Capitol Hill and hopefully the evening will end with me running through the streets shouting OBAMA! I'm nervous and excited and hope he can help turn things around in this country.
One thing I found almost as amazing though is the comments left by the public in response to the video. Here are some of my favorites:
PantherCityIndie See Profile
Anyways, cable. After I lost those channels I had your basic over the air stuff. It was kinda blurry but if I wiggled the cable just so, or if I held the cable in that sweet spot and watched TV with cable still in hand, I got some network channels with only a few lines running across it. After I moved some shit around though I lost that sweet spot despite numerous ghetto configurations e.g. cable propped up on a large candle. Now I don't get shit. What I get reminds me of the movie Poltergeist and that scares me. Instead of looking for a solution I just gave up. Honestly I don't have time to watch TV and a lot of what is on those channels is complete crap, like Two and A Half Men. Who the hell watches that? It's not even funny. If I'm going to stare at the TV it's going to be with K watching a movie or good TV series on DVD. Right now we're into True Blood, Dexter and Weeds.
I was never one to use the TV as background noise because I find it frazzles me and distracts me from those few coherent thoughts that enter my mind once in a while. But when you're eating breakfast, or doing some housework, it's nice to have something on. So I find my media consumption habits have changed. I'm listening to a lot more Internet radio (the new age stations on Shoutcast. Yes new age, you jerk. I can hear you all laughing from here). I've also been listening to a LOT more NPR which I've learned often reports in depth Canadian news which is awesome. So that's what's been on lately and I think it's been a fantastic change. I can sort of absorb news and political discussions while doing other things. I spend less time consuming crap. The only drawback has been getting hooked on some of the interviews and stories which means I stick around to listen to the end, which means I ended up being tardier than I already am.
For example, if you are planning to do a little dine and dash, getting away with it is a lot easier if you don't leave behind a wallet containing your ID and stash of pot.
So neighbour update. I always have assholes for neighbours no matter where I move, even state to state. The two douchebags upstairs invited friends over in the middle of the week two nights in a row a few weeks back. Noisy, messy, drunk friends who were stomping up and down the stairs and dropping fucking popcorn all outside my door. Someone has also left gum on the carpet outside my door on two occasions. It's not like gum just falls out of your mouth unless you're four fucking years old. I'm pretty sure it was deliberately left outside my door. The morning after one of their little get togethers their window screen ended up in the parking lot below all mangled and shit. So I called the landlord to tell them about the noisy guests, window, and popcorn. She came that afternoon to clean up and I heard her talking to the douchbags, asking them when they are graduating etc. I have a feeling they won't be invited to renew their lease. Maybe they'll even get evicted.
Good because not only are they douchebags, they are racist douchebags. I can hear every word they say through these flimsy ass walls of my shitty ass 10-unit apartment complex, especially when they are YELLING at the TV at the top of their fucking lungs while playing their stupid first person shooter games. The other day one of the shitheads repeatedly yelled "fuck you n*****!" Yeah. The n-bomb. Did I mention they're white soccer-playing jocks from Seattle University. Yeah I googled them. I wanted to know what these losers are about.
Even in the privacy of your own home, what kind of person uses that kind of language? Seriously. The n-word does not just roll off the tongue of anyone I know.
On a separate occasion one of their friends popped out the door and saw me coming out of my apartment. He put his head back inside and whispered something to one of the guys that I couldn't hear. Douchebag then yelled back to his friend, "is it Asian?" That was followed by audible giggles and "shhhhhh" from his other guests. I take it the neighbor was asking about me. They could at least have used a pronoun that refers to a person and not an object.
Anyways, upon further stalking I discovered that douchebag #1 is a 22-year-old from a town in Arizona with a population of 200K, 86% white, with a significant Mormon population. Douchebag #2 is a 23-year-old political science (???) major from an even smaller town in Washington's "tri-cities" with population of 55K people, 83% white. Both towns are very conservative and overwhelmingly Republican. Gee, I wonder if it's a coincidence that these two rejects were bred in small white conservative Republican towns. I think not.
Seattle, especially our predominantly gay and racially diverse neighbourhood of Capitol Hill, is way too big of a city for their narrow little minds. Maybe they should just go home! Fuckers.
This shirt designing stuff is fun. I wish I had the artistic ability to do this kind of stuff for a living. For now creative pursuits will have to sit on the back burner as I finally have a tentative date for my doctoral exams -- early March. Counting backwards, I'll have to read about a bazillion books and articles each day. Awesome.
Teaching is going okay. My first discussion section for the Intro to Asian Am studies course I'm TAing is full of bright talkative students, mostly seniors. My second section, not so much. Lots of staring down at their notes, fidgeting, generally avoiding eye contact with me even with softball questions like, "could someone briefly summarize the anti-Chinese violence that took place in Rock Springs, Wyoming?" It was a 4 page article, people. Step up already. Jeez.
I brought up some DVDS to watch on my parents big new TV. One of them was Wedding Crashers which I heard was funny. I got through maybe the first 10 minutes and I had to shut it off. It was stupid and not funny and Owen Wilson is really annoying and plays the same idiot character in every movie. Also saw the Accidental Tourist which was pretty good but a little slow and depressing. The movie I saw that I liked best this weekend though was Stranger than Fiction. I heard that Ebert and Roeper liked it but I am just not into the moronic Will Ferrell, Adam Sandler, Owen Wilson etc type Hollywood movie so I never saw it before but it was surprisingly awesome. I don't even want to explain the plot because I don't know how to do it without giving it away but just trust me. It's good. I have a new respect for Will Ferrell and wish he would do some more non-moronic movies now.
- If she won't answer questions, the media should work around that and instead yell "Look! Gays!" or "Condoms!" near Palin and just watch her dive under the podium in fear.
- For trying to appeal to Hillary-style feminists, it sure seems funny that the men around her are telling her when she can speak and when she can't.
- Of course she's not scared to answer any questions; she's incapable of answering them. John McCain and Britney Paris Palin '08.
- The last thing Crazy McCain wants for Scary Sarah is for her to be unscripted...she might put her proverbial foot in it (she is going to do it anyway) and scare those that thought she was a Goddess! Run Sarah Run...we are coming after you with our San Francisco Values and you might get cooties!
- During the debates there will be no scripts allowed. So if I were her, I would carry a bible. she is going to need it
- the Hillary comparisons have got to stop. Hillary never would have hid behind a man like Palin hides behind McBush
And this was a more general comment I found. A bit tragic:
-Democrats have science, reason, and humanity on their sides. Republicans have . . . . a love of Jesus and lots of flags. And yet the Republicans will probably win again.
In any case there is an election going on in my neck of the woods soon too. Our PM, Conservative Stephen Harper is trying to hold the federal election early knowing full well that an Obama win could sway Canadian voters to vote further to the political left.
The new saying in Canada is ABC -- Anything But Conservative. Wanna know why?
Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Danny Williams (also a conservative) says of PM Harper,
"Even without a majority, he has cut funding for minorities, cut funding for literacy, cut funding to students, volunteers, museums and arts and culture groups right across the country [and] his government cut funding to women's groups and … actually went so far as to remove the federal mandate to advance equality for women."More here.
I should get one of those shirts that say "Don't blame me, I voted Liberal." Canadians (including ex-pats), please vote Harper the fuck out of there. He is messing up our country.
- They are holding this year's annual conference at the Manchester Hyatt in San Diego which is being boycotted by most other academic and professional organizations and citizens' groups because the hotel's owner contributed thousands of dollars in support of a proposition to ban gay marriage. They are also in the middle of a labor union dispute (their room cleaners have to clean more rooms for the same pay and have no job security)
- They wanted us to register for the conference so far ahead that most people get stuck with a gap between paying the money and getting the money reimbursed by our departments. This is a gap that hurts graduate students and people in teaching positions who still have tight budgets
- The convention program is looking more and more like a phone book and NCA does not allow us the option to just view it online to save a few trees
- The hotels with discounted rooms for the conference are full except for one, and the conference is still 4 months away
- They charge a big wad of money for the preconference courses/seminars but the instructors they recruit to teach/lead them don't see most of that money
- Younger scholars and people of color have complained of just not feeling very welcome at the conference (I'd agree)
And my complaints:
- They send us the badges in the mail and if you forget to bring yours to the conference you have to pay for a replacement badge -- why not just save the postage and envelopes, have the badges at the conference and have a badge pick up station at the check in? (they could learn a thing or two from organizers of tech conferences I tell you)
- The web site is horrendous which is particularly embarrassing (as in I'm embarrassed for them) because they are a communication association. It is impossible to find anything on that site and their new flashy "RFP tracker" is not even a web application, it is a link to a 53-page PDF file (OMG, are you kidding me?). Oh and they can't even keep the font sizes and styles consistent from page to page (ever heard of CSS?). Ugh, I could go on and on. The web site is just pathetic. Pair a design student with an information architecture/comp sci student together on an internship and let them have at it. It couldn't get any worse.
- Almost all the faces I see in the newsletter are of old white folks, usually men. You'd think it was a newsletter for AARP or something (oh wait, AARP would have more people of color in their publication). One of the articles in the last issue of Spectra (their newsletter) was a rant from a grumpy old professor who was annoyed with laptops in the classroom and with students bringing Blackberries and Palm Pilots (he admitted he didn't know the difference and, yes, he said Palm Pilots). Laptops are how we electronically take notes these days, those mysterious things that replaced typewriters which replaced stone tablets. See where I'm going with this? Technology serves a purpose and it's related to communication and an important topic of study in our field for people very unlike him (thank the gods). His claims about technology getting in the way of learning were hyperbolic and serve only as an indication of how out of touch he is with the way business (and academics) is done these days.
I guess I could sum them up as old fashioned, inefficient, disorganized, bloated, out-of-touch, and inflexible.
from the NY Post. Nice.
On his MySpace page, Johnston boasts, "I'm a f - - -in' redneck" who likes to snowboard and ride dirt bikes.
"But I live to play hockey. I like to go camping and hang out with the boys, do some fishing, shoot some s- - - and just f - - -in' chillin' I guess."
"Ya f - - - with me I'll kick [your] ass," he added.
He also claims to be "in a relationship," but states, "I don't want kids."
- Good article on why we like Facebook and Twitter
- I bought a shirt from Threadless of unicorns humping under a rainbow and it rocks
- Watching the RNC is far too grating so I follow FakeSarahPalin on Twitter instead
- Went to the famous Red Mill burgers for first time this weekend and it was tasty, but I was disappointed that there was no option to have a fried egg on top
- Got the $39 introductory massage special at the franchise Massage Envy and it was surprisingly good
- I went social dancing (lindy hop) for the first time at the Century Ballroom and had a great time (especially after I made K dance with me NOT in the cool (i.e. highly experienced) kids part of the dance floor where people know what they're doing and most teach classes. Instead I looked for the part of the dancefloor where people looked like they had just learned a basic east coast swing at the free half hour pre-dance lesson. I fit in better there.
- I start another series of intermediate level lessons next week and can't wait since this partner dancing stuff is the hardest, most intimidating thing I've attempted since learning to snowboard 10 years ago. Actually, this is harder and scary in a different way (scary in terms of kicking strangers in the shins and looking perpetually confused, out of step, and stupid vs. scary as in I could fall off a snowy cliff and die right here scary).
- I'm putting in an effort to reduce my consumption of red meat (except for the trip to Red Mill Burgers) for the sake of sustainability (House of Prime Rib would be another exception if I ever head there again in the near future)
- I decided not to submit a paper to a conference for 2 reasons - 1. it'll be on my birthday 2. there is no division for race and ethnicity and I think that's lame 3. (ok 3 reasons) it's in Arizona and I'm saving up my good shit for a conference in Honolulu (after you go to a few academic conferences and realize how draining and expensive it is, you tend to get a bit pickier)
Got less than a month left of summer, in which time I still need to write a short paper, reformat my computer (and/or get a new one before this one blows up), and respond to a call for papers for a conference in Phoenix. My "free" wifi stolen from a neighbour disappeared after I got back from LA which sucked the big one. Luckily it magically came back today so I've been glued to my computer the whole day. Oh and of course, with the reappearance of my free wifi comes a problem with my cell phone. It's not dialing out. Great.
I don't think part of September is enough for me to recharge my batteries and mentally be ready for another grueling school year. But I don't have much choice.
I need more sun and more time to be ready for school.
I headed back to Seattle the day before K and I took the train down to Eugene, OR for a wedding. The train ride was pretty relaxing. It was my first time meeting that group of friends and they were awesome and fun and smart and incredibly good lindy hoppers. It was exciting because it was also my first time taking what I've learned at lindy lessons to the dance floor and my first time watching K dance lindy. I've wanted to do this for a long time and I have finally found folks (and a bf) to dance with. Kinda sucks that they've got about 10 years of lindy experience on me since I just never had a circle of friends that was interested in all that. Part of the problem being I was a permanent fixture in the rave scene ten years ago. Oh well, better late than never, and this is something I can do even when I'm old like one couple that was ripping it up on the dance floor.
I just got back from 4 days in SoCal for a friend's wedding where I got to see many of my Bay Area friends including a couple who are moving to NYC. It was awesome to hang out like old times, including having a few too many drinks and going out late to eat. One lowlight of the trip was some raging drunk white dude who ran past us yelling "fucking gooks." I wish one of my friends wasn't so tired because he said he would have otherwise kicked his ass, and there were certainly more of us than there were of, well, him. Oh well. The rest of the weekend was a lot of fun and the wedding was a combination of good friends and open bar, which made it pretty entertaining.
Now that I'm back it's time to tackle my two summer credits, get some paint on my apartment's walls, and try to get some down time before madness starts again.
Without any apparent provocation, Li allegedly began stabbing McLean, who had reportedly been dozing. Terrified passengers poured off the bus.The accused then allegedly decapitated McLean and paraded around the bus with his head. Li is also accused of consuming parts of McLean's body during his subsequent four-hour standoff with police. More...
When it was quittin' time we decided to take a walk out to Wallingford for a treat, homemade ice cream at a local shop called Molly Moon's that makes awesome organic ice cream from scratch, including the sugar cones. He had honey lavender and I had thai iced tea. Other flavors included Vivace coffee, bubblegum, balsamic strawberry and other on their web site. So yummy. Baskin Robbins and crap like that just doesn't compare. Although I have to say I really like the Starbucks coffee ice cream.
Trying to finish my last week of working with these teens. There are a few of them I can't wait to never see again, but a few of them have grown on me, but those were never the ones who had discipline issues. 2 days of grading what feels like a billion speeches, report card comments and then I head to Vancouver to spend a week reading and relaxing.
For the first time we spent the whole day in the burbs. I took K to a Korean spa called JJ Family Spa Plus, the only one in the Lower Mainland. I was hoping for something like Lynnwood's Olympus Spa but unfortunately it sort of sucked. The woman barely greeted us when we came in, the jacuzzi was dirty, men's steam room not working, two of the soaking tubs were empty (leaving just the dirty jacuzzi), there was a freakin' TV in the charcoal room (how are you supposed to relax?), they wanted to charge money for use of the massage chairs (like the ones at Sharper Image), the shampoo and conditioner dispensers were empty, and when I returned my key the woman didn't even look up from her computer screen. Bitch. They are planning to renovate but it looks like they already started but continued to take customers at full price. So unimpressed. Still, like K said, it wasn't a bad way to spend a couple hours -- laying around in a heated room on a bed of salt, charcoal or "yellow earth."
Oh well. We did have a nice afternoon visiting Belcarra Park where a couple caught a really big crab and kids were catching little fish with fishing line tied to a tree branch. Lots of them were doing that and having great success at it since the water is clear enough for you to see the fish biting less than a foot below the water's surface. That's what kids should be doing, not playing video games on a sunny day. They looked to be having an awesome time.
Stopped at White Pine beach on Sasamat Lake on the way back where we sat on a park bench and looked out at the water. My friends were either at a stag or taking care of baby for the evening so we walked down to the local theatre to watch the Dark Knight. I'd never spent so much time at a theatre -- 1 hour wait, 1/2 hour previews, 2.5 hour movie for a total of 4 hours. It was awesome to walk there and back in the middle of the night when it's nice and warm out.
The goal for Sunday was to eat fish and chips at the famous Pajos. Even the newborn came out and we all walked around Steveston, got some sun, and had some gelato for dessert. A perfect Sunday afternoon, at least until we went to the Duty Free on the way home. This snooty middle aged white woman in the cosmetics section would not stop following me. I clearly did not look like one of the foreign Asian visitors who drop loads of cash on cosmetics so I'm pretty sure she was thinking I was going to steal something. I wanted to turn and ask her if she ever followed white women that closely. Instead, I kept looking at different things in her section to watch her follow me. It was almost funny because she was so obvious. I did a couple extra laps through the aisles to give her some much needed exercise. I need to think of more strategies for dealing with white salespeople who follow me in stores. K dealt with it by leaving the area for the wine section. I prefer a more confrontational, or at least entertaining approach.
Dave grew up being bounced from foster home to foster home. He's been physically, emotionally, and sexually abused. Years back he sent through a bad divorce, lost his job, lost his home and became homeless. He's in his early fifties and he made the news when the city decided that the treehouse he had built on city land and lived in for two years was going to have to be torn down. He's known as the squirrelman because he loves animals and shared his treehouse with little critters including a squirrel he had tamed, a rat and a ferret. Well after he got evicted he became a bit of a local celebrity because people in the area knew him and loved him and so some folks got together to buy him an RV to live in, and he cried. What the news didn't report is that there is a really happy ending. A woman who lives outside of Seattle who also has a special bond with animals, lives off the grid, at one time with several wolves, yes wolves, and other animals. Dave now parks his RV on her land and lives with her and together they take care of animals. She doesn't charge him for rent but he works for her and it sounds like he has a permanent home and a life again. I wish I could find the story on the NPR or KUOW site but I can't remember what time it was or what show I heard it on. But it was a really touching story so I thought I'd share. I like happy endings especially for people who haven't been so lucky in life but haven't lost their passion for life. I hope things get better for him.
Here is an abbreviated list of things on which they commented/questioned:
- my place is too old and the landscaping unkempt
- front door is too squeaky
- why is there no in-suite washer dryer
- everyone has a covered parking spot except me and another tenant
- why do they have to swear in this movie
- organic peanut butter is too oily (it's separated and you need to mix it up, it's just like that)
- stairs to bedroom are too steep
- fridge is too big
- microwave should be tilted at a different angle
- curtain, which is temporarily covering my my storage nook, is too sheer
- not enough meat in the fridge
- bathroom tap is too hard to turn on
- there should be a strainer in the tub to catch hair
- where is the sugar, why do you put honey in tea
- why buy a knife set when I could take their old knives and sharpen them
- why so many cables near the baseboard heating
- knobs in the bathroom are loose
- why are there not more towel racks for guests
- I should mask when I paint walls (I DID MASK)
- I should have cable, it couldn't cost that much
- why are there no facecloths
- bus stop is so far away
- non-slip mat in the tub should be hung up daily to dry
- electrical bill too high for one person
- too many keys on my key chain makes it too heavy and will break my car's ignition
They were relentless and K had to listen to some of that, and also had to deal with me losing my patience and thus he deserves a large trophy.
The only peace I got was when I put on a movie Friday and Saturday nights. That bought me a total of 4.5 hours of them not criticizing me and how I live my life. After they left on Sunday afternoon, I collapsed on the couch and fell asleep for two solid hours.
I haven't watched a race since I went with my parents to watch the Tour de White Rock in BC when I was a kid. It was kind of like watching Indy (I went to Infineon a couple years ago to see Danica Patrick), all the excitement but without the noise and stink. Plus you get to stand right up close and watch them go by. Part of the fun for me was also seeing all the awesome dogs that people brought out with them. Seattlites love their dogs. One big black dog I saw was a 2 year old that was 120 lbs (ie bigger than me) and still growing. He made the retriever he was playing with look like a chihuahua. So cute.
Anyways, yeah, it didn't do much more than sprinkle a bit all day that day but I was wearing 3 layers under a down jacket to stay warm. The sun made an appearance today but the forecast calls for more rain this week. Yuck.
I got up at 10am or so today, had something to eat, and could not keep my eyes open. Crashed on the couch for 2 more hours for a grand total of 11 hours of sleep and I still feel like shit. I'm on my third cup of Red Rose tea which I made extra strong so I can put in a couple solid hours of reading for my exams.
Good thing I have to do something that involves leaving the house. Gonna watch K's race in Ballard this afternoon. In fact I should be getting out of my pajamas right now but it's just so fucking hard to get motivated to do anything. Winter, you need to go away really soon. My mental health and productivity are at risk here. I've already had to take most Cure songs out of my playlist for fear it will only sink me deeper into this weather-induced melancholia.
Thank you for being an inspiration.
From The Seattle PI
Gov. Chris Gregoire called her "the soul of Seattle" who "exemplified so much of what makes Washington great."
"She stood up for the underrepresented, especially Asian Americans, from the time she was a young woman. She was a role model for women of all backgrounds and a fierce believer in the importance of families. And she was a successful businesswoman and politician. Throughout her life, Ruby did what women do best. She built bridges, and because of that, she left our state better place for us all. We will miss Ruby, but her legacy will live on."
(4:21:48 PM) K: pretty damn funny
(4:21:54 PM) me: how awesome is that
(4:21:55 PM) me: seriously
(4:22:15 PM) me: a government entity gets a logo of a guy jacking off. i love it
(4:23:07 PM) K: so good
(4:23:47 PM) K: did you see the one for the christian childrens home that look like Jesus was getting a bj from a kid?
(4:24:00 PM) me: HAHAHA no that is awesome. send me the link
(4:24:13 PM) K: they took it down
(4:24:16 PM) me: shit
(4:27:06 PM) K: here's one that started that thread a few years back, http://www.thelogofactory.com/2006_images/info-imgs/bad-logos1.jpg
(4:27:53 PM) me: that is excellent
(4:28:14 PM) K: http://www.blog4logos.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/01/funnylogos-2.jpg
(4:28:34 PM) K: http://www.frederiksamuel.com/blog/images/kuda.jpg
and one more:
damn I can't stop, a few more:
So I'm just getting back into the swing of things again and I've been completely exhausted and having to take 1-2 hour naps in the afternoon. K's theory is that my out-of-control allergies (mostly nasal stuffiness) might be preventing me from getting enough hours of REM at night. I'm thinking I need to start taking Singulair again because Reactin and Claritin just aren't doing the job. After that, it'll probably be time to see the doctor for a remedy.
So I can tolerate some bad movies. I can. Really. There are those movies that are considered not quite award-worthy because the jokes aren't super funny (like Napolean Dynamite) or the plot is bizarre (like Old School) or it's cheeseball (like Dirty Dancing). But sometimes there are more important reasons to dislike a movie. In the case of Ironman, aside from the fact that the script was totally corny which is not that big of a deal, there is the issue of there being no strong female characters. In fact the only main female character doesn't even get a real name, she's an executive assistant called Pepper for Christ's sake. That's something you fucking name your dog. Also all the Middle Eastern people in the movie are evil and inversely almost all of the bad guys are Middle Eastern. The hero is a rich white guy with unbridled genius (can you say cliche?) And in the movie, it seems that his brilliance excuses his sexist, misogynistic tendencies and also causes him to be impulsive... but alas that's okay because his assistant, Pepper, whom he ogles constantly in a really perverted way, is always there to keep the asshole on track. You don't have to be a hardcore feminist or ethnic studies scholar to recognize the stale sexist and racist stereotypes that this movie recycles. Just. Lame. And not even that entertaining.
So getting back to this guest house. It's a great deal at $550 per week for a one bedroom that a small group can fit in. I'll have to keep it in mind for overflow guests.
Anyways, the weather there was unexpectedly warm and sunny while over in Seattle, it rained, hailed and then also got sunny. Weird. Since I got back I've been trying to catch up on all the shit I put aside as I frantically prepared for that conference. It's been great to take some time to do things that people don't normally have to budget time for -- laundry, doing dishes, unpacking from my move, figuring out how to take the bus from my new place. But I guess being a grad student is just not a normal situation.
10. drunk people urinating in the bus shelter
9. sketchy businesses - XX stores, gun shops, strip club
8. shopping carts inside my building
7. people not stopping at the uncontrolled intersection
6. sloppy building next door
and now I'll come up with reasons 5 through 1.
5. no coffee shops are open late in the area (except Starbucks which has no free wifi and burnt tasting expensive coffee with no frequent customer cards and they wonder why they're doing shitty) . The closest coffee shop open later than 7:30pm is way up in Shoreline or down in the U-District.
4. pan handlers. It's almost impossible to go to QFC to buy groceries without being approached by a pan handler, or having to walk past a whole group of them hanging out behind the businesses which can be intimidating. Most of them don't appear to be homeless, they're just asking for money instead of working. As someone who makes $14K a year for my halftime TA appointment, which is less than anyone who works full-time at minimum wage... and I still manage to pay rent, that pisses me off. If you have a place to live and clean clothes to wear like many of those panhandlers, you can get at least a minimum wage job and make more than I do in a year and stop asking me for money.
3. abandoned cars. There were two cars abandoned on my street for months, then after the flood, another car was left abandoned and because it had been flooded it actually started to grow furry stuff on the seats. Apparently Lake Shitty is the place to leave unwanted cars
2. public library. The Lake Shitty branch is about the size of someone's living room. I've never seen a smaller library with so many noisy children running around unsupervised in my life. It SUCKS.
1. I don't feel safe walking around. I love to walk and I hate driving but even around dusk I don't like to be walking around in Lake Shitty. In fact, when I went jogging in broad daylight I often got unwanted attention (whistles, hollers, comments etc) from people hanging around or driving by. I saw one guy almost run through a 4 way stop because he was looking at the ass of a woman bent over pulling weeds from her garden. People are just generally trashy there and can't keep their comments or eyes to themselves.
Where I live now, which I've heard referred to as the homo-hipster area (Davie meets Kitsilano for you Vancouverites), I can walk everywhere and feel safe even at night. I'm in a more quiet residential neighbourhood while being no more than a 10 minute walk to cafes, bars, little boutique stores, and restaurants. There is some rif raf as in any major city, but people are more eclectic and friendly and less sketchy/trashy/up to no good. I still have noisy neighbours but it's heavy walking/video game noise, not children screaming or couples arguing which has been my experience in the past particularly in Lake Shitty.
1. laptop power supply broke before I could get a copy of a paper out of it
2. jerk who sold me one on eBay sat on it for many days before shipping it out
3. food poisoning had me puking my guts out and on my ass and not eating solid food for 4 days
4. drank Ensure to get some nutrients, felt sick, and realized it contains soy which I'm allergic to (this proves that god hates me)
5. moved to my new place (while still sick) and was too weak to unpack
6. got a 4" split down the ass crack of my new pants while squatting down to pick up a vacuum cleaner - brand fucking new pants too
7. missed a meeting as a result of not having my laptop with me constantly because obviously it serves as my brain and I cannot function without it
Now I'm almost all unpacked, the power supply came, and I'm almost recovered from the food poisoning (although I'm still tired and getting headaches and heartburn). Hopefully things start looking up from here. I have a flight booked on American to go to Chicago next week so they better hurry the fuck up and finish checking the wiring on those planes.
Going to go home and try to steal some wifi now.