Dog Days

“Heeere, piggy piggy piggy! I smell bacon through the PHONE!” This is a somewhat typical expression to come home to when my cop-hating sister is on the phone with her other sister Danni (also known as coffin-bait.) Danni drives the cadaver-wagon for one of the local funeral homes, and as a consequence, has to deal with the police once in a while.

To clarify, a hearse is a fancy black car that drives the prepared remains of someone’s dearly beloved to their final resting place. The cadaver wagon is a white van that delivers the dead to the funeral home to be washed, dressed, and either preserved or incinerated, depending.

These days, you can even get a Trek urn, although it’s less canopic jar and more Locknar.

Typically, the burial process in America is a cross between Egyptian tradition (embalming intact remains, giant heavy box, offerings for the afterlife, etc.) and the Victorians, who totally jacked all of that stuff and made it prudy and English.

Cremation, on the other hand, is typically better for the environment (no formaldehyde or lead-lined box buried too deep for proper decomposition) and an investment in a Victorian- style mantelpiece (also known as the urn.)

  But I wasn’t going to write about dead people.

   I was writing about daycare.

The Munchkin, looking very Bellingham in bedroom slippers and my fedora.

So, since I’ve graduated and am now freelance (read—unemployed) I’ve started nannying the Munchkin, who just turned four and is a pretty princess who likes to dig in the dirt. This brings in a whopping 60 bucks a week at the moment, but in the likely event that Suzy Q goes to work full-time (rumor has it she’s getting promoted) then it’ll be a hundred.

Aside from that, Suzy’s also hired me to tutor her mom in English reading comprehension. Popo is a frightening descendant of emperors and conquerors and she works as a sushi chef because in the thirty years that she’s lived in America, nobody ever bothered to work with her on reading. (At one point, Popo was a Chinese opera singer and has received job offers to teach at Western because of her expertise. She had to decline because every Western teacher has to have a written syllabus and administer a written final exam.)

Teaching Popo will be 3 hours at most per week at 20 bucks an hour, which is on the cheap side for a private tutor, but they’re family and it was Suzy’s idea, so I’m not complaining. I am, however, terrified beyond all reason because I have to be in an educator’s position with Popo. Who continues to frighten me in spite of the fact that I’ve known her for four years and she likes me because I do the dishes and occasionally, I act like her daughter’s voice of reason. (Because she’s aware of my abject terror of her and my capacity to negotiate with Suzy, I am occasionally subjected to a forty minute tirade about how she has no idea what her daughter thinks she is doing with her life.)

My first day as nanny consisted of painting, soccer, Flintstones, and a picnic to try and get the Munchkin to eat in the heat. It also lacked a proper nap, because the Munchkin’s window faces the neighbors.

“Tante, I can’t sleep!”

“Why not?”

“Because the neighbors are buttheads!”

I’d tell her not to say it, but it’s true, and she learned it from Popo anyways.

Because I watch the Munchkin until 5:30, I ended up going straight to Uji’s for the night. Needless to say, I’ve not spent a great amount of time at home, and I swear the kids are taller than when I left. Going to Uji’s does save money on laundry (because I wear my shirts for two days now instead of one) but it makes my dirty clothes extra-rank. It also means that I’m inclined to go stir-crazy in Uji’s tiny grey apartment and I get annoyed by his semi-nocturnal habits, because dammit, the day is half over and I’ve got stuff to do.

Uji’s true form, which he assures me is some sort of rabbit, which he appears as if awakened before the crack of noon.

Like looking for grad school  and a full-time job.

Some days, though, I just let it sit and don’t care about it for a while, because I’m doing things like enjoying the summer that we’re actually getting this year.

Like yesterday.

Uji and I hit our 5-month mark without any grievous bodily harm, so we packed a picnic in the park to celebrate. He cut up some bread and cheese and a couple of carrots, I brought fresh home-made aioli from scratch (because I am the kitchen pimp) and we drank bubbly that he smuggled into the park in tonic water bottles. It wasn’t very smuggly since tonic water is clear and Chandon is yellow, but nobody really looked at us twice.

Uji in my fedora, looking rather out-of place in Bellingham due to his ironed shirt, fresh haircut, and a distinct lack of bedroom slippers.

We hung out and watched the sunset, took a bunch of pictures, and practiced his English. His word of the day: “Douchebag.”

I’m so proud.

We’re hanging out again tonight, and tomorrow I’m abandoning both households for Seattle for a girls’ weekend in honor of Suzy Q’s 24th birthday. I have no idea what the fuck to get her, but whatever it is will likely be gluten-free and loaded with cardamom.

R & f’ing R

Well, I’ve gone and graduated.

I wore a tie and Uji told me I looked like “Hot Albert Nobbs.”

I had about two weeks where family took up the majority of my time celebrating my victory over college and demanding to know what I was planning on next.

The answer, officially, was a year of work in a hopefully relevant field and then grad school if I can find someone to pay my way.

The unofficial answer is all of that stuff and a vacation, damn it.

So I asked to go to Texas.

Not because this is the ideal vacation spot. Far from it, actually; it’s a hundred degrees at night, central Texas is in a constant state of drought, and what little rainwater my mother has saved has mosquito larvae and drowned red wasps in it.

But my family is here, and I haven’t seen most of them in a year and a half.

Also, it’s 800 miles away from the passive aggressive bullshit that is the hallmark of Pacific Northwest behavior (and the root of so much culture shock that I will never actually assimilate to my adopted homeland–for fear that if I did, I would start wearing wool socks with sandals, driving a Subaru, wearing yoga pants to formal functions (like funerals. I shit you not, I have seen this) and abandoning all semblance of good taste along with my considerable cojones.

It does, however, mean getting on an airplane. When I was a kid, this wasn’t so bad. You went through a metal detector, packed a water bottle so you didn’t die of thirst, you brought two or three books and drawing paper, and you listened to the shitty music stations, occasionally running across some gem like “The Pines of Rome” that would catch up to you later in life. In fact, the worst thing that ever happened to you as a kid was having to talk to strangers who were old because you were stuck with them for four hours and for some reason the “Children shouldn’t talk to strangers” rule means nothing to anyone in the air.

Nowadays, if you can find somebody’s Gramma to talk to, it’s like the highlight of the trip.

The metal detector is now a huge ordeal, in which there are Calvinball-style rules about liquids that change every damn six months even though TO DATE, NOBODY HAS SUCCEEDED IN BLOWING UP AN AIRPLANE WITH A SEALED BOTTLE OF WATER OR HALF A FRAPPUCINO. I know I’m not the only one to rant about this. Everybody rants about this. In spite of the volume of complaints, TSA is not equipped with a formulaic response, but instead offers incentives to its employees for extra rudeness and stupidity. (I can’t actually back that up, but seriously, when someone treats me like a criminal for having a sealed bottle of water–which was perfectly legal a year and a half ago– I can only assume that their common sense has been overridden by some job requirement. Really, though, I think TSA is just a bunch of jumped-up meter maids.)

That nonsense aside, the shitty music has been replaced by shitty TV. Which means that the most entertaining thing to do on the plane is to talk to the Gramma next to you.

My seatmates were some guy in his fifties doing TPS reports (seriously! They’re a thing! They just have nothing to do with the Y2K switchover. For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about,YOU KIDS GET OFF MY LAWN!)

and an Abuela from Guatemala whose name was Anastasia. She spoke no English, I barely speak Spanish, and what little I speak is impeded by a severe embarrassment at the fact that I am not as proficient in my second language as I am in my third or even my fourth, because I’ve neglected it for ten years.

Also, La Anastasia spoke a dialect I’ve heard maybe once.

We became friends.

Awkward, awkward friends with a generation gap of about fifty years, a language gap, and a cultural gap. We both prayed when the plane took off and landed, we both thought the air was dirty over Houston, and we were both going back to families.

Lunch was macaroni that I brought with me on the plane (that I got for free because it took half an hour to make and my waiter was rad. It was the Kraft kind, so don’t get too excited.) and a little box of Asian noodle salad (whatever the hell THAT means! Asia is a continent, United Airlines! There’s like, a buttload of noodle types! Just say soba noodles with sesame oil and soy sauce that got tossed with raw red cabbage and green onions.) that I bought for Anastasia because the last time I was on a flight, the Gramma sitting next to me bought me a drink.

Airline karma.

I had coffee and kahlua, thinking that I could stave off a caffeine headache and get drunk in one fell swoop. This was a mistake. Not only was the coffee your typical airplane shitwater, but somehow, ADDING BOOZE MADE IT WORSE!

This horrible concoction did terrible things to my bowels later on.

At the time, though, it gave me enough Liquid Gumption to go sprinting through the Houston International airport in spike heels.

By sprinting, I mean an undignified mixture of limping and off-balanced horse-trot that made a lot of noise because of the platform on my shoes, the jingling of something in my stupidly big purse, purchased for the express purpose of being luggage, and my own out-ouf-shape wheezing through two terminals to my flight, where several businessmen and a handful of Texas Aggies glared at me for holding up their plane.

 

It was a hundred degrees in Austin when we landed. I changed into a miniskirt in the airport bathroom and went to dinner looking like five miles of bad road–an improvement over the ten I had estimated.

My mom showed me pictures of her cats over mojitos and tostones (savory fried plantains.) All of which are apparently furry little sociopaths (the cats, not the plantains.) “You have to keep the closet door closed or Dot will climb my clothes. She ruined my symphony jacket last month.”  She has another cat who pees in unmade beds, one who will chew through anything short of wood or the refrigerator door to get at breadstuffs, and one who I fished out of the bushes when I was ten, who was cute as a kitten and now has a semi-psychotic look to him from a lifetime of being bullied by other cats and tormentation by me in my earlier years. I liked to carry him around in my shirt. And hold him against his will. And chase him when he ran.

I was a disturbed child and there was nothing to do but read and chase the cats.

I’m still not responsible for this one’s bad behavior. He has irritable bowels and will shit on the floor if the litterbox isn’t pristine. Also, he’ll occasionally lay open my mom’s hand for no reason at all.

And people wonder why I like dogs better.

Tonight will be beer and barbecue (whether other people like it or not, because good Texas barbecue doesn’t exist outside of Texas and my dad’s back yard, and I want to embrace the novelty of eating outside without a coat on. Because the air will be warmer than my blood, you see.

Draniki

It’s Dead Week.

I think what they fail to mention is that dead week somehow manages to fall always during a week of nothing but depressing weather, in which people will insist on engaging in excessive douchebaggery on and off campus.

For example, my friend Suzy Q’s ex boyfriend, who chose to throw a tantrum over the phone with her–while she was at the lady doctor.

Or Uji’s neighbors, who chose to have loud, obnoxious sex (lots of headboard-banging, thankfully indistinguishable gibberish, and terrier-inspired sound effects) and then turn on a noisy  blowing-things-up movie, starting at 12:30 on a school night.

It’s still better than waking up to hearing your neighbor beating his girlfriend, but it does make one wonder if common courtesy is a thing of the past or if people really are that stupid.

At any rate, Uji has his deadlines and I have mine, so I’m taking some much-needed time to study at home.

The Squidge has graduated from squidging to crawling, so when I got home today, there was a makeshift baby gate comprised of various rubbermaid totes, laundry baskets, a diaper box, and a yoga mat stretching from the living room baby jail to the couch–effectively penning the child in the living room. About two weeks ago, Kali re-arranged the living room to make more room for crawling babies and the like, so she’s got a sizeable space that’s dedicated to her use.

This is evident based on the ratio of baby toys to floor space being somewhat disproportionate during the Squidge’s waking hours.

The boys were zombified for most of the evening by that infernal contraption known as the Nintendo DS. I saw each of them twice, when they came out to ask their dad to help them catch a Pokemon and then again when I knocked on their door to tell them that their mom had been calling them for five minutes to come and eat supper.

Apparently, it’s the first time in two days either of them has had video game time; Kali and the Dork-In-Law grounded them from technology for stealing a pint of ice cream out of the freezer and then hiding the emptied container on the top shelf of their closet.

Kleptos.

Dozer has been hoarding shiny things since he was a toddler. He used to pick up anything from tinsel to earrings to car keys and stash them under a corner of carpet he pulled loose under his bed in the trailer.

Nowadays, he steals food and eats it, stashing the wrappers in his pillowcase. I once found half a granola bar in there.

We’re not really sure why he keeps doing it, or why he keeps the wrappers instead of tossing them, which would be less likely to incriminate him. My guess is he’s nervous about Evil Mom Powers noticing fruit roll-up cellophane in the garbage when no fruit roll-ups had been rationed out. At some point I had the same fear; my answer was to shove that incriminating shit as far down into the trash as my grubby little arm could reach.

I don’t get it.

The kids don’t starve.

They get snacks when they ask for them, except around meal times or if they’ve been in trouble within the last ten minutes.

We teach them that stealing is wrong, mostly because we want them to do better than we did, and because Kali takes careful inventory of the kids’ food to see to it that they always have enough to eat. Something like four missing string cheeses means a day without two apiece in a school lunch. Stolen suckers mean no treats after dinner. Stolen ice cream, however, meant an invasion of Mom’s sanity stash.

Which is an act of war in this house.

For our part, about once a week, one of us will get the wild hair to cook a big family-style meal. This week was meatloaf. It was amazing. The trick is to stretch the beef with a little pork for flavor.

The rest of the time (when we’re not pulling an Iron chef on a shoestring) we fix the boys something simple that six-year-old Demonic will eat without fussing, that’s substantial enough that ten-year-old Dozer will be full after finishing, and then the adults scrounge for something to hold body and soul together.

Tonight I made Draniki, which is cheap-and-easy Belorussian potato pancakes. They’re filling, they have protein from using egg and/or sour cream as a binder, and they cost about ten bucks if you have to buy everything to make them, down to the salt. If you are like most Americans, you already have eggs, butter, and salt at home. I did. The potatoes and sour cream cost a whopping four bucks, because I only use yellow potatoes. Russets would have made it three.

Grate two medium or one large potato into a bowl, squeeze out the water (you can sav the starch if you’re feeling authentic or miserly) crack an egg in, add a pinch of salt, and mix with a fork. Heat a tablespoon of butter on a skillet or griddle or what have you on medium heat. Scoop some potato slime into your hand and flatten it into something ovoid and not even slightly resembling a pancake and slap it on the griddle (that’s what I used tonight. It sucked, because the damn thing is aluminum and bows up in the middle.) When the egg solidifies and the Draniki can be flipped, do so and cook until there are little brown spots on both sides. Garnish with sour cream.

I realize that I have a peer reviw due tomorrow and a draft for my last undergrad paper ever in the works that needs drastic revision. However, cooking meals for onself, even small ones that are basically Slavic Bachelor Chow, is important to maintain the well-being. When you cook for yourself, you are creating your own sustenance. You are bringing certainty to your life. You are asserting your place as a resident of your home, thereby creating an anchor for yourself for when times get really tough. In the worst days before I left my old place, I cooked more food in that kitchen than I ever have in any other place I’ve lived. Part of the reason was the uncertainty of where I would be running away to. Part of it was to make gifts to my host for the evening. Part of it was to hold on to my position as Lady of the House, in spite of the fact that being at home repulsed me. It’s important to be master of one’s domain, even if it only extends as far as the stove.

Tonight, I may sneak off to Uji’s and study on his couch.

But I will be happier for having a belly full of simple food prepared by my own hand.

Let the week be dead; I have Draniki and therefore I will live.

Season of Indulgence

So, from Friday to Sunday, I couldn’t say how much weight I’ve gained, but I’m going with infant harp seal.

It was, of course, all worth it, as it’s all from eating exquisite food and drinking amazing booze with Uji and his amazing family.

Uji’s family road-tripped down to Seattle this weekend, to celebrate his older brother’s girlfriend’s birthday and to watch said older brother (who is rad) propose to his girlfriend of seventeen months. She is also rad.

Having Uji’s entire immediate family there took some plotting–Uji’s eldest brother and  sister-in-law (both also rad) have a baby who’s about Chucky’s age, which takes planning. In addition, Uji invited me along, as it was our three-month mark.

I brought my homework, but I didn’t really study.

Friday

I finish school, tornado my room looking fro something weather-appropriate to match the perpetually too-chilly-for-what-I-had-planned-to-wear weather that has been a mainstay of the Seattle climate since I was a kid. Uji picks me up, comments, What a mess! I thought you were ready! as I shove a dress and some heels into the suitcase we’re sharing. I say ‘bye to the boys, and Demonic asks, “If you’re going, does that mean Uji stays?” I’m so moved by your loyalty, Godson.

We meet with Uji’s family, drive to the outskirts of Seattle, where Uji’s middle brother Rob lives with his lady, Mandy. The two share a well-appointed apartment that looks like it was done in the early sixties (before the architecture and color palette went to shit) and re-modeled a little bit in the mid eighties. They have Lego fridge magnets.

We drive together to a family-style Thai restaurant called Bai Tong and shared between us the following:

Salmon red curry that would knock your socks off

Woo-sen Pad Thai (which is Pad Thai with glass noodles and extra tamarind) with prawns. Good Pad Thai, by the way, is not red. It’s brown.

Something with wide egg noodles and chicken sauteed in soy sauce

Something that involved strips of RARE beef with Thai basil and ginger (the soulful variety)

Something that involved crisp-fried basil and seafood, including squid and green mussels

Because Uji’s family can finish a glass of wine toasting alone (which is awesome,) I decided that I would save my liver for Saturday and had iced tea with Lychee chunks, which Uji thinks are gross because of the texture.

When we get back to Rob’s apartment, I fall asleep on Uji’s shoulder while he plays the original Twisted Metal with his brother.

Saturday

Wes started the morning with a cup of Mandy’s coffee and a lot of getting ready (we wore our nice clothes all day, and to avoid suspicion, Rob finally relented and stopped asking Mandy to change out of her jeans. I’m comfortable, she insisted.

We had reservations at a swanky crab place down by the marina, where the waiters will tell you it’s their pleasure to clean your spilled blood-orange Bellini off the polished table–I know, because I did it. They brought me another. I thought this seemed counter-intuitive, as a girl who’s halfway through her first drink and knocking it over should likely not have a second.

For breakfast, I had what Shu would call “A big plate of regret.” Not because it was bad–on the contrary, it was excellent. It was, however, ridiculously filling and curbed my appetite for the remainder of the day.

Brunch at Chandler’s comes in three courses–first, you get a basket of little house-made scones and fried balls of delectable that they insist are apple fritters. They are served with cinnamon-sugar butter and raspberry freezer jam that is almost as good as Suzy Q’s.

The second course is a “seasonal fruit plate,” which consists of a slice each of watermelon, pineapple, and cantaloupe, with a few grapes. Honestly, I’ve had better, but I’m not one to waste food, and I’ve certainly had worse as well.

The third course is your entree–mine was Eggs Chandler, which is Eggs Florentine with crab served with home fries. I put a whackload of Tabasco on it (my mom puts cayenne in her Hollandaise, so I like it spicy) and wolfed down the majority of it, thinking that it would be interesting to experiment with using blanched stinging nettles in place of the spinach some time. Uji sensibly restricted himself to a Whiskey-based crab bisque and bread, with a Mojito and water.

Mandy was presented with an enormous Creme Brulee and a scoop of Raspberry Sorbet with a candle in it, which she passed around to a table of mostly-stuffed people who politely took bites and passed it on. Both were delectable, with just the right amount of tart in the sorbet and the sugar on the Creme Brulee burnt to perfection.

When we returned to the car, I changed into more sensible shoes, started driving twoard downtown, and were promptly sideswiped by some crazy old bat who claimed that it was our fault she had veered into the middle lane and that her broken sideview mirror was going to be paid for by Uji’s father and that she was calling the police. This whole mess took about forty minutes and put me into a near-panic because of that thing I have about the police and being terrified of them.

Uji calmed me down by pulling a square package wrapped in tissue paper and string out of his pocket and presenting me with it. It was the center of a CD case he had cut into a square to disguise the shape of a green pearl necklace made by a friend of the family that he picked out for me. There was a booklet that said HAPPY THREE MONTH ANNIVERSARY on the outside and a long, sappy letter on the inside that I won’t write here because you will gag and I will cry. Again. I love that man.

This is not to say that I can be pacified with jewelry–although if y’all want to randomly start giving me shinies, I won’t refuse them…

We wound up parking at the Fairmont Hotel (formerly the Olympic) which is one of those bastions of “Oh My God, LOOK at this place!” and Uji and I got to walk around for a bit. Uji dragged me into Urban Outfitters, which, other thatn the DIY camera sets, I found wholly underwhelming. I think they should make their eight-dollar “douchebag jar” big enough to fit the store through the coin slot cut into the lid. I dragged Uji into Bananna Republic and discovered that we have somewhat different tastes in women’s clothing. Good God,  I would NEVER wear that! I responded to his gesture toward a floor-length, white jersey, off-the-shoulder, ruffle-embellished sundress. I pointed to a black shantung cocktail sheath with a crisscross neckline. Look at it on the mannequin, though; it lays funny where they cross like that. To each their own.

We met up with the rest of the family, including Uji’s eldest brother Juanillo and his wife Heather and their baby Maya and walked back to the Fairmont. On the way, we passed the windows of Louis Vuitton (which have horrendously ugly shoes in them) and Luly Yang (which has dresses that look like butterfly wings.)

Coming into the Fairmont, I came to the conclusion that I love downtown Seattle, because people actually dress up to go out. The people watching in the lobby (whose bar is called the Terrace) was amazing. There was a wedding party, a debutante tea party, and a silent auction for charity upstairs being run by be-gowned volunteers in some serious bling.

And that’s where the Main Event happened. Uji’s parents know the bartender at the Terrace by name, and the three of them with Rob conspired to bring out a bottle of champagne (presumably for a birthday toast) and a plate with two enormous chocolate-dipped strawberries with the words MANDY, WILL YOU MARRY ME? written in chocolate on the side. Rob, having beforehand tested the distance between his chair and the coffee table to see that he wouldn’t knock anything over, got down on a knee and offered her a ring.

Of course she said yes.

After a celebratory cocktail, (I had a cucumber martini) we all walked down the steep hill to the Market district, which is WAY more my scene. Pike Place Market is the one area of Seattle that I know even a little about, and really, all I know is the Chinese apothecary, the cinnamon bakery, the little pub with the library down the alley, and the Showbox a few streets away.

Supper was at a seafood place within a stone’s throw of the water, called Etta’s. It’s on a different chunk of the same alley as my pub, and specializes in the Ridiculous.

I foolishly got the clam chowder, because I thought a bowl of soup would be less filling than a cut of fish. HOW WRONG I WAS. It was so rich that I couldn’t finish half of it! I also tried Raw Oysters for the First Time Ever. They are delightful. They are exactly as I imagined they would be, only better. Somewhere, I have a dead relative who’s proud of me for trying them.

Dessert was a lemongrass sherbert made with sour cream that Uji and I split and didn’t finish half of.

That night, most of us had a bellyache and decided it was worth it. Uji made vomitorium jokes.

Sunday

The madness didn’t end Saturday. It didn’t even end when we got home. Uji’s dad got up before everyone and went to a French bakery near Rob and Mandy’s house, got a boxful of delicious, and came back to where Uji and I were refusing to get up all the way.

The drive home included a stop at Nordstrom’s shoe department in the Alderwood mall so Uji’s mom could exchange her shoes. Uji and I walked around commenting to each other in sign about shoes that looked like stripper heels, flats that made ladies look like they had duck’s feet, and things that we liked but would never wear. My favorites looked like something Suzy Q would wear for a show–cobalt blue satin with a white jewelled detail over a peep toe. Three inch spike heel.

Speaking of Suzy Q, I think we might have poisoned her by mistake. That night, to cheer her up after a particularly bad bout of what I like to call the Menses (that is to say, Suzy Q is perpetually surrounded by pissy, overly-hormonal men who all want her to be their moms or their booty call and get mad when she refuses to be any of the above) we brought over some ingredients to experiment with.

What we wound up making was something like this:

Three varieties of deli brined olives, including the dark green kind that has to be pitted, kalamatas, and martini olives sans pimentos. All diced rustica.

Capers. A whack-load. There is no such thing as Too Many Capers.

Anchovy fillets and the oil, which served as the flavor base for our pan.

Garlic

Onion

Hunt’s tomato sauce, because we were too lazy to prepare our own. This time.

Chunks of fresh mozzarella

Dried Pumpkin mushrooms

Fresh crimini mushrooms

red chili flakes

sea salt

a dash of WINNING

Served tossed with squid ink linguine and garnished with grated parmesan and fresh basil.

We dubbed it pasta prostitutta cara, or “expensive callgirl pasta” because it’s close to puttanesca, but better.

We then proceeded to sit and drink wine in segments of the Wonderbaby’s habitrails for children, which breaks down to three collapsible miniature tents made of brightly colored nylon and flexible wire. we did this until said Wonderbaby discovered us and joined us with a stuffed lion and a Cthulu pillow that mom brought back from Comicon.

I conclude that I have just had a ridiculous weekend and that I should spend the next three days eating salads and doing homework to make up for the complete and utter decadence of the past three days.

Which most definitely tasted like winning.

p.s. I’ll likely update this entry with pictures in days to follow–I just have to bug Uji about them. He and Suzy Q have this habit of photographing our food, so I’ll be able to entice you all!

 

 

 

 

Facebook Suicide

This is probably not the most appropriate of terms for deleting one’s social networking account.

It’s actually in reference to The Boondocks, which I watch off and on.

Sharing something with one person on Facebook is sharing it with every Ginger you and the other person have ever “friend-ed” between the two of you.

But due to the recent diatribes of two Soulless Gingers (redheads, for the more civilized folks who don’t watch Southpark,) and from reading stuff at work about the way new technology is warping our little minds, (not all of which I agree with, but the author’s point is nothing to sneeze at,) I’ve realized that yes, in fact, Facebook HAS changed the way that people do stuff and say stuff, and that in my case, I don’t like it.

The first Soulless Ginger was some idiot friend of my step-brother from high school, who said idiot stuff about idiot politicians,and the ONLY reason I had to see it was because he was “friends” with one of my friends, who lives in Texas and spammed her wall with his uninformed, “I-failed-civics” ideology. We will NOT be discussing politics on my blog, by the way; it’s rude where I come from.

Now, I know what you will all say– “You can block people on Facebook!”

Unfortunately, Blocking someone on Facebook is no remedy to one’s own foolishness.

The second Soulless Ginger is actually a good friend of mine, who reamed me for something tactless that I had posted on a friend’s wall, which I thought was relatively harmless at the time. After I went up one side of him and down the other for getting all up in my business, he told me to read back what I had written when I was calm. I did so, and I realized that yeah, the whole debacle was douchey as hell, and that no, I did not in fact want to become a douchebag by participating in the trite bullshit that is the Facebook thought process.

Which means I’ll be posting a lot of random weird stuff here for your amusement–blog posts require proofreading and therefore they require forethought.

Expect Cthulu humor.

 

One Ping Only

I know it’s been ages since I’ve posted a thing, and I wanted to let anyone who actually reads this rag to know that yes, in fact, I am still alive. I’m too full of spite to die.

I’ve gotten into the busy part of the quarter at school, and after a five-day stint of doing minimal homework in order to be a good friend/family member/etc. I discovered that I had a draft due the next day that I had HAD YET TO BEGIN RESEARCHING.

My teacher gave me two days, in which I posted a “LEAVE ME THE HELL ALONE” notice on my now-defunct Facebook account and–much to the chagrin of my poor, neglected boyfriend–holed up for two days with no company.

I explained to him  that this was a normal part of any student’s life (and wondered how he went through school without having to do that) and that it usually only happens to me when something is late.

It’s over now; I’m bringing the paper in for feedback in about fifteen minutes and re-adopting the habit of studying every day for a minimum of three hours. Considering I have a three-hour break between classes and there’s usually about three hours where the writing center is dead-empty, it works out even on days I want to do stuff.

My friends are still important to me–they just get to wait until I’ve done my homework.

So, remember, folks, when I go away like this, it’s not forever–even the Red October came up for air eventually.

Many Moons

Because it’s been like a month since I even drafted a post, let me fill you in on what’s going on:

I am no longer transient!

I have a bedroom, with a bed and a dresser and a TV and a little bit of space to stack my books. It’s quiet. I can close the door if I want to, and people have to knock to come in! I can sleep as long as I like! (Not that I do; school and work keep me getting up at eight AM five days a week.) I can study at home! Or have Uji over to MY place!

These are things that while housed, I never would have missed. After nearly five months of having nowhere to batten down the hatches, these little things mean the WORLD to me. When I get home tonight…HOME…I’m going to finish setting up my little nest and after I read to the boys and spend some time with Kali and the Dork-In-Law, I’m going to go hole up in…my room…and do whatever I want until I pass out at 2 AM. On my own bed.

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Life is good in that regard.

At school, we are approaching midterms and I have yet ANOTHER blog related to class. Maintaining it is a breeze, mostly because I care less about how pretty it is and more about the written component. I feel like I get a little rambly in places, but it’s a response exercise more than anything. I’m also in the middle of reading Moby Dick for a class with one of my favorite professors (I have a list of favorite professors and it’s getting long.) Surprisingly, I like Melville’s weird, rambling style. It reminds me of talking to old hippies that took too many mushrooms in their younger days. Melville is evidence that yes; Americans do have culture, and it’s largely based on experience over tradition.

Maybe that’s why Americans have no respect for their elders.

In Texas,

MY MOM MET THE BLOGGESS!!! Squee, squee, squee. Some of you will remember I studied her online work for class and gave a presentation that focused heavily on giant metal chicken humor.

I am JEALOUS AS HELL!

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 In other news, Uji and I are doing fine and he’s rad and weird and I miss him like hell because he’s out of town for the week. I think he’s taking it worse than I am; I’ll text him good morning and between classes or after work, and at the end of the day, I’ll text him good night.

He texts me…a bunch.

Which is nice, because I miss him a bunch.

At the same time, I’m taking the opportunity to catch up on the homework I’ve ignored to hang out with him, which is significantly more fun than my borderline-monastic study habits.

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Uji impeding my studies.

Last but not least:

KOSHKA’S GOTTA BOYFRIENNND!!

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"Don't take my picture."

Well, not really; they just started seeing each other. Koshka’s beau is adorable, they’re adorable together, he likes old movies, and he likes Cthulu. He can stay.