Monday, July 25, 2005

On Vaca

Here I am in the lovely Duluth/Superior area. I'm not coming back until later this week!

Hands are in a state due to bike riding (my carpal tunnels miss my old bike with the bendy handle bars). I did not bring the boat, but did have a bit of a whitewater experience at Gooseberry Falls that included the phrase "I've got my own eddy!!!" Photos forthcoming.

Saw "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" on the IMAX last night, and helped Robert Shop for a car today. Am now done typing for the night, as the hunt and peck to avoid pain in hands approach is not working. Damn bike. Oh, well. I'm still on vacation.

Friday, July 22, 2005

I sing my trachoma incursion

In the ongoing battle against the Viagra adverts we seem to have come to a sort of deadlock. About half of the penis-perking spam gets booted to my junk box, while the other half is delivered to me (all contain the exact. same. message.). The up side is that those that are delivered are the ones with the funniest subject lines. The most recent one was very polite, if misleading: "do have this cordite." Now, cordite I might actually fine useful, should I ever manage to go shooting. The one before that, however, was my absolute favorite, ever. "I sing my trachoma incursion." Isn't it fabulous? Don't you want to put it to the tune of "I Sing the Body Electric"? I haven't even junked it yet because it makes me laugh every time I check my email.

So, yes. I sing my trachoma incursion. Why don't you?

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Oh, oh it's Magic!

Note to self:

No matter how tired and achy you are, looking at the ibuprofen bottle from across the room and saying "accio" will save you having to get out of bed. First off, you have no wand. Second, you are not a wizard. Third, you do not live in ImaginaryLand.

Please to sleep now, Delusional Girl.


Tuesday, July 19, 2005


Seriously! I'm not getting kicked out of grad school! And I have a whole committee!!! Barbecue at my place on thursday at six. If you haven't been invited, it's because I'm an idiot, so comment and I'll invite you!

The Potter Hijinx Post

It will come as no surprise that I got Up To Stuff in honor of last weekend's book release. What may come as a surprise is that I actually remembered to upload the pictures. Once you've revived yourselves from the shock, read on for sick, sad, and demented taled of Potter-based hilarity.

First off, Friday night's midnight release party at B&N. If you've been reading along, you'll remember that I involved E & M in my last minute costume making spree. On Friday my Tonks costume debuted a bit early at the production of Fiddler that Bill and I went to see. How did it look? You tell me.

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While I'm used to going out in public looking rather questionable (some of you will remember that my actual hair was partially purple for a while), Bill was quite the trouper to put up with my oddness in such an unrelated venue. It was semi-necessary, as we were going straight to the release after the play, and donning a wig in a public restroom is more trouble than I'm willing to take on.

Bill decided to stop at home and costume up on the way to B&N. He came as a wizard very poorly disguised as a Muggle, and it was a stitch to watch him cluelessly ask the children who commented on his two ties, "isn't that right? The more you wear, the more muggle you are?"

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And since we were there well before midnight, we had a lot of time to kill. This lead to some amusement in the cafe area involving the temporary tattoos and glasses that we got as party favors. My father turned into a decidedly older Harry Potter.

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We did the countdown at midnight, and had our books by twelve-thirty. Naturally, I pulled a "who needs sleep" and stayed up nearly all night reading. I slept for about three hours before Dad called to wake me for our next adventure. We drove to Stillwater, where the Minnesota Zephyr had been dressed up as the Hogwarts Express, and its station as Kings Cross and Diagon Alley. They had "shops" set up around the station, and a Marauder's Map showing where everything was. The best part was the owl post office, though. I have a great big love of birds, so I was in awe of this guy:

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When it was time for our ride, we walked through the barrier between platforms 9 and 10...

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... and emerged onto Platform 9 3/4.

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We boarded our train, sat at a table with a lovely Stillwater native and her granddaughter, and listened to the HBP audiobook for the hour-long trip.

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Overall, it was more fun than should be strictly legal in one weekend. And seriously, can I have book seven now?

Monday, July 18, 2005

Could it be?

No 2 - 3 year summer this time? JKR appears to have finished book 7 already. Unless she meant that she has finished ONLY the last chapter of it already.

Thanks for the link, Bill.


It's turning in to dork Christmas chez moi this weekend. First potter, now one of my favorite X-Files eps in syndication. "Small Potatoes" has some of the funniest lines ever seen on television, and a shapeshifter that places Our Heroes in a hilariously awkward situation.


Saturday, July 16, 2005

I am a wizard, not a baboon brandishing a stick.

Herein begind the punchdrunk, sleep-deprived spate of HBP related entries that make no sense.

Some favorite quotes, given out-of-context for those still making their way through:

"I am a wizard, not a baboon brandishing a stick."

"I am not worried, Harry... I am with you."

"You don't have to call me professor, sir."

"You don't care whether I live or die, but you do care that I help you convince everyone you're winning the war against Voldemort. I haven't forgotten, Minister...." (The image that follows this is the best non-verbal smackdown ever brought.)

"Two days ago Arkie Philpott had a Probity Probe stuck up his ...well, trust me, this way's easier."

So. When do I get book seven?


The last 100 pages are a sucker punch to the gut.

Just sayin'.

Up For Air

I'm taking a brief break on page 403, as I've just realized that it's likely to be another TWO FREAKIN' YEARS before I get to do this again.


Dollars to donuts I'll be on my second reading by the time we're on the train this afternoon.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Raise Your Voice

So, I've been taking voice lessons so as not to frog my throat while teaching for three hours a week this fall. The added bonus is that I'm taking them from a great friend whom I know from my theater class. She has many lovely qualities, both as teacher and friend, and as an added bonus has a dog and a cat who provide much hilarity.

During a previous lesson the cat, who is still rather distressed at the dog's presence, got fed up and started bitching loudly at us that there is a DOG IN MY HOUSE! DOG... IN MY... HOUSE!!! That's exactly how she sounds. So, the exaggerated phrase "Dog... In my HOUSE!" became part of my vocal work, as did the laughter associated with it (nothing connects you with your full vocal range like a good belly laugh).

In addition to this, I also use part of the "My dear Lady Disdain" dialogue from Much Ado About Nothing" as text for vocal exercises. It's great fun, which is beneficial when you're practicing something over and over.

So at my lesson yesterday, I found out that Harry the Dog has been having some seperation anxiety issues. So I took him while my lovely teacher went to work, and we had Adventures with E & M that involved Tonks-ing me up for today (pictures to follow). My cat was less than thrilled to have a Dog in His House, so the running around town also helped keep the peace. This morning, however, both my living quarters and my person have been thoroughly Cat Scanned, and Tom has been acting a bit... off.

Thus, it was both hilarious and surprising that I heard, during my shower/vocal practice, a very loud, mewing accompaniment. I looked down to see a fuzzy little head peeking into the shower, eyes wide as if to say, "Are you DYING in there?"

Needless to say, I've no plans to quit my day job.

Thursday, July 14, 2005


So, the odds are on Dumbledore as the character who doesn't make it through book six (I still think he'll bite it in book seven). In Pushing Up Dumbledores: Jim MacDonald over at Making Light showcases some answers to the Guardian's "write dumbledore's death scene in the style of someone NOT JKR." My favorite is William Carlos Williams.

In other news, I am dog-sitting a nice chap called Harry tonight, and if we can find willing confederates we will be running around town looking for a pink wig for tomorrow. Because I suddenly want to dress up like Tonks.

EDIT: OMG, Hermione Granger's Diary. SO FUNNY!

EDIT II: Cable access is playing a burlesque show. How much does that rock?

Tuesday, July 12, 2005


I've been stewing over a few things for some time now, and they seem to have come to a head lately. I've let some friendships lapes due to my own hurt pride, and I've a sneaking suspicion that this makes me not quite as good a person as I would like to be. See, it's one thing to say piss off to a so-called friend who deliberately does something hurtful (that one? No regret there). Beyond that, people do things all the time, either without thinking or for their own reasons, that inadvertantly hurt or piss people off. I have this tendency toward biterness that initially makes me want to play the injured party role because my pride is a bit bent, but ultimately this only ends with me feeling empty and missing my friend. Friendship is about grace, and I keep forgetting that (and then remembering... lather, rinse, repeat). If I found enough reason to create and maintain a friendship with someone in the first place, then giving my friends the benefit of the doubt really should come before my pride. I may not agree with their choices, but I have only myself to blame if I let that disagreement destroy a friendship and turn me into a whiny little victimization fiend.

So, yeah, nothing special going on today. I just got sick of listening to myself whine and putting myself in a bad mood whenever I remember good times. So, you know, go forth and enjoy one another. And cut each other a little slack, because there's too many people on the planet to guarentee that no one's gonna get hurt by some innocent decision you make some day. Karma's like that.

And Ryan? Tell Tom I said hello, and that I miss him and Kelly.

Monday, July 11, 2005

HP Thought of the Day

Grawp is like the Jar Jar of HP fandom. He was met with a WTF? by most, has a highly limited (and garbled) vocabulary, and most hope never to see him again.

In other news, my car is healthy again. Four new tires make for very happy driving. I practically flew home from the service center.

In other news, there is apparently a genetic mutation that happens when one is conferred a Ph.D. that creates an inability to reply to time-sensitive emails in a time-sensitive manner.

There is no further news. I want a nap, but suspect I will once again end up doing yard work.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Putting the Fun in Funk

I have been a grumpus for the past three days, owing to the completely bass-ackward sleep schedule that my body has been observing. And yet, I persist in hanging with E & M until three o'clock every morning. And they still hang with me, which means my grump seems to be limited to sitting alone in the basement and snarking about online idiots. This pretty much verifies that my natural reaction to any negative emotion is to become an EVEN BIGGER DORK.

Last night we had a conversation about Harry Potter that lasted at least an hour. I am not kidding. An HOUR. No sleep? Grad school being a bitch? Find salvation through dorkitude!

This was naturally followed by a conversation about sexuality and attraction, which naturally turned to an hour-long discussion of pr0n. This naturally included a discussion of the hilarious study that Jon wrote about the other day, wherein folks tried to physically prove that bisexuality exists. Go read it. I'll wait... ok, now, was that not hilarious? Now, y'all know I don't self-identify as... well, anything, really, but I do happen to find people attractive (when they're not busy being utter fuckwads), and, you know, people come in a variety of genders, and I'm not really that picky about which gender a person is so long as they don't act like a fuckwad to me (and have a few other redeeming qualities). But I gotta say, if you were just putting pictures in front of me to try to get me het up, the asthetic odds are stacked against men. This is especially true in porn, which is where the conversation just got silly last night (yes, wine was involved). Because give me a little sippy and I suddenly say things like "penises look funny when not in use" and "if a guy's fully undressed and hard by the time I get there, why should I think it has anything to do with me?" I swear, I'm like a socially inappropriate Chatty Cathy doll.

But yes. It is a new day now, and I am in Funkville again. I have to email someone to find out how to remain in school and retain my teaching appointment for the fall. Because really, it would have killed them to give me notice BEFORE the end of the school year, when I could still get ahold of people easily. GRRRRR.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Longest day ever... again

So, after my two hours of sleep yesterday, I went to school, managed to bag me another committee member and a clue as to which direction I'm headed with this dissertation thingy, then kept putting off going home to SLEEP in order to talk to people I haven't seen in over a month. When I FINALLY got home, I crashed out hard at about six-thirty. I had a number of conversations with my mother that I was entirely asleep for, and woke up at ten-thirty only to have her recap them for me. While I was sleeping, I had nightmares that all of the copies of Half-Blood Prince had been stolen the night before their release, so I was unable to get my copy at midnight next week. So, when I was unable to go back to sleep, I started re-reading Order of the Phoenix, which really revved up my Harry Potter dorkitude, and resulted in last night's over-exuberant post.

Sadly, all of this took place BEFORE MIDNIGHT, and I was awake untli significantly after midnight, which made yesterday seem about two weeks long. I didn't wake up until noon today. I had more crazy dreams (these had to do with committee stuff, and were more comedic-in-a-strange-way than worrisome, and included a faculty kickline... I love my drugs), and woke up with surplus anxiety which my usual internet fix failed to abate. So, in a move that will surely make my mom think I've gone (further) round the twist, I went out and did yardwork. Hopefully, she won't kill me for mucking about in her garden, as she usually likes it when she can get me to help.

I mulched a six foot square of yard (this is harder than it sounds, as the mulch had to be first shoveled into the wagon, then trundled over to the portion in question, dumped, spread, lather, rinse, repeat). Then, because I wasn't sweaty enough, I hauled large rocks from their pile in the front garden around to the back where they are being used as edging. I contemplated pulling some weeds, but by this time my shoulders were so sore that the weeds would likely have won. Instead, I tended my potted herbs (almost time to transplant the basil and cilantro again), and then came inside.

Now I'm off to shower before taking my mommy out to dinner. Aren't I a good daughter?

And now for something completely dorky...


This message brought to you by the fact that I just learned how to count on my calendar.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Art by Teresa

On a lighter note, this is one of my favorites of Teresa's recent paintings. If I has $275 I'd Buy It Now in a second. Go here to see others.

"London is a city that goes about its business"

That's the first quote I heard this morning after my mom woke me up to tell me about the bombings. It was stated by an almost amused Londoner on MSNBC, who seemed to be trying to calm his overwraught interviewer. It was an interesting reminder of the fact that some places have long ago come to live with the possibility of random attacks, and that we in the US are priviledged in our shock.

For those who like their news less histrionic. The Beeb has a running block of reporter check-ins from around the city, updated frequently.

May we all go safely about our business.

EDIT: Sky News is actually updating a bit faster than the BBC at the moment.

EDIT II: Sky News link removed, as it was getting ridiculous rather than informative.

EDIT III: 33 confirmed dead, though no numbers in yet for the bus that was ripped to motherfucking shreds. Here's BBC streaming radio links. Choose "world service english news" Unicast for most likely connection to news (yes, I did my "research" on this, which painfully involved an earful of loud pop music before I found the right stream).

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Powerless Once Again

Things I learned tonight:

1. I am apparently also powerless in the face of free music. My mom had free tickets to see Stevie Nicks, so instead of coming home from my afternoon appointment and working on dissertation stuff I met my mom and some friends downtown for dinner before the show.

2. While rock concerts have fewer norms for when to cheer than symphonies or jazz concerts, there's always someone who has no clue sitting near me. This woman literally screamed every time Stevie started talking. STARTED talking. Buh?

3. Free is exactly the right price for Target Center concerts. The acoustics are absolute ass, which makes it twice as hard on the ears.

4. Stevie Nicks has the perfect voice for this arena, as it was the only instrument tonight that was not phased by the afore-mentioned ass-ness.

5. Vanessa Carleton is the cutest little thing ever. Her voice was, however, slightly assed up by the acoustics. (Robert, did my voicemail actually come through?)

6. I wanna be Stevie Nicks when I grow up.

7. I'm probably destined for disappointment on number 6.

8. The whole "One" campaign is the most useless thing since the caffeine free diet coke. Nothing like a bunch of aging musicians passing around a petition to cure AIDS and fix poverty!

9. I'm way too old for arena shows. When everyone stands up, I get annoyed that I can't see unless I join them.

10. Large parking ramps decrease the IQ temporarily, resulting in people who believe that they will be able to turn their SUV into the empty parking spaces next to them and sneak into the outbound traffic without anyone noticing.

Need a little clarity? Check the similarity:

Via Jay Smooth: NYPD Arrest 181 Black Men in Queens After Cop Shot in the Leg.

Of course, the US has a long history of rounding up black men to uphold.

Incidentally, it's really hard to find historical discussion of the lengths overseers and slave catchers went to in order to return rebellious "property" to plantation owners. It's there, but buried in Underground Railroad narratives for the most part. I'm probably just annoyed at the quality time I spent bonding with google just to fully utilize the title lyric for this post. Then again, it seems misleading that the most extensive discussions of white involvement in slavery involve a paternalistic abolitionist bent. Meanwhile, this site seems to focus on accounts that emphasize the relative gentility of white overseers when compared with slaves "promoted" to overseer. This example certainly resonates with stories from modern policing -- eg examples of black cops in black neighborhoods being more brutal than their white counterparts [NB the former may provide some insight into the latter, as "promoted" slaves had to be more brutal in order that their masters not think them to be in collusion with those they oversaw]. But it seems to serve the same questionable purpose of painting white slave masters as far less brutal than their "charges." Which points up the troubling idea that it's not necessarily that Americans don't talk about race issues that's the problem, but rather how this discourse is accomplished.

And, after all of that (this really was gonna be a short little entry), title lyric shamelessly yanked from Public Enemy.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

TMI Therapy

Dear Uterus,

You are a good-for-nothing lump of tissue and I hate you.

For the love of god, let me sleep.

No love,

Monday, July 04, 2005

Rabid Fangirl-itis Flare Up

Fourth Season X-Files reruns on ABC.

Scully = yum.

That is all.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Fuckity Fuck!

I just rammed a door into the knee I had surgery on in January. Tried to walk it off, but have resigned myself to a night of ice and hobbling.


Friday, July 01, 2005

The First Step is Admitting You Have a Problem

A while back, some internet-ly person linked The Council on American-Islamic Relations on their blog, and noted that they offer free copies of the Qur'an to those who would like a better understanding of Islam. Now, if you know me, you know I signed up faster than you can say "religious tolerance." First off, I love learning about religions. Second, I want primary source ammo to use against bastards who think "muslim" is a synonym for "terrorist." But the final, deal-sealing reason that I ordered it is that I am powerless in the face of free books. Seriously. I have numerous pocket-sized New Testaments; I came home from Russia with a suitcase that almost surpassed the international weight limits because the city we stayed in gave us so many free books; and when I was in High School I acquired Homophobia: A Weapon of Sexism well before knowing that I would one day find it referenced in one of my grad school classes.

But it takes a few weeks for CAIR to process orders for free Qur'ans, so I kind of forgot that I ordered it... until today. My mother called down to me that I had a book in the mail, and I was stumped. I couldn't remember buying any books lately (alas, I am also powerless in the face of not-so-free books), and I haven't yet talked to any of the text-book reps whoo will soon become like drug dealers to me. So I went upstairs, looked at the package, and started to laugh. I said to my mom, "You'll love this" and opened it up. There was my beautiful, hard-cover, embossed, FREE copy of The Holy Qur'an (in both Arabic and English).

Mom thinks this is pretty cool, until she finds out I got it free off the internet:

Mom: Wait, we're now on some FBI watch list because you wanted a copy of the Qur'an?
Me: (slightly sheepish) I'm powerless in the face of free books.