Thursday, October 30, 2008

Distressing dream

I dreamed that Oscar Wilde and William Shakespeare were having a humongous fight in heaven. Oscar Wilde said that Shakespeare didn’t have the courage of his convictions (meaning he was Not Really Queer), and Shakespeare said that if anybody here didn’t have the courage of his convictions, it was Mr. Lied Himself Blue In The Face To Avoid Prison, and then Shakespeare said “How didst that work out for thee anyway?” and Oscar Wilde said that he considered it the height of tactlessness for Shakespeare to be making fun of the unfortunate incident that led to his never seeing his sons again, and he would have expected Shakespeare to be more sympathetic since he had lost a son of his own. And I thought that both of them were unkind to bring up these painful incidents, but I didn’t want to get in the middle of it. I was just about to tiptoe away when I woke up.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A regrettable quality to possess

is the inability to photograph well. I just take terrible photographs. Even my senior portraits look weird and unlike me. I think that in the history of time, there are maybe two pictures of myself I really like.

This is very unfortunate on days like today, when I looked really cute. I had on a white button-down shirt and a high-waisted black-and white skirt, and a black-and-white headband, and my hair was a little bit straightened but not completely, so my hair isn't frizzy but it doesn't look lank, and I was wearing some adorable black-and-white shoes that I got on sale at White House Black Market, and my purse was black, and I just looked really good.

But I can't prove it! If you don't see me today, you will never know how cute I look, because even if I took a photograph to document it, you would not be able to tell that I look pretty. I would look weird - my chin would look strange, and my smile would be all weird, and my cheeks would look like they were eating my eyes. It's like when I had my birthday hat, my piratey Ascotty hat, and I bought an outfit to go with it so that I could wear it back home on the plane (because I couldn't pack it so I had to wear it), and I bought all the pieces separately but nevertheless it all coordinated really well. And I looked pretty, and everyone was extremely helpful as I traveled, and they carried my bags for me, and they showed me where the secret lifts were, and they called me "Madam" - but still, when I took a picture, I still looked weird. It's extremely frustrating. Pray for photogenic children. For their sakes.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

An equation I discovered when I was walking out of the store with a box of cards in my hand

Blackberry + Tarot Cards = Balance

The sea, the sea, the sea, the sea!

I missed the sea! Oh, I missed it so much! How have I been living my life for the past five or six years without the lovely ocean? The wonderful ocean! I am so glad I went on retreat with my work for the past couple of days because we went to the glorious and amazing ocean! I haven't seen it for so long and I missed it, the wonderful sea! I didn't do any body-surfing or look at seagulls, but there were a lot of brown pelicans, and I splashed around in the ocean. At night, which was fun, because I have not very often (if ever) gone swimming at night.

Here is a poem that I like a lot, and it is about the sea, and Robert Frost wrote it. It's called "Neither Out Far Nor In Deep", which isn't the best title ever, but it's very Robert Frosty, so I guess that's what you get.

The people along the sand
All turn and look one way.
They turn their back on the land.
They look at the sea all day.

As long as it takes to pass
A ship keeps raising its hull;
The wetter ground like glass
Reflects a standing gull.

The land may vary more;
But wherever the truth may be—
The water comes ashore,
And the people look at the sea.

They cannot look out far.
They cannot look in deep.
But when was that ever a bar
To any watch they keep?

I like that poem a lot.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Kinda creepy

One of the electric sockets in the bathroom lights up. Which I think is so you won't stick your finger in the socket when you stumble into the bathroom at night, or so you will more easily be able to plug in your, I don't know, straightener or something when you stumble in at night. However, it's not completely lit up. It's just flickery. Flicker, flicker.

It looks exactly like the electric socket is just so charged full of electricity that it just can't help lighting up. It's like the electric socket is gloating: YOU CANNOT RESIST MY POWER.

...I find it unsettling.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Happy birthday, Oscar Wilde!

Happy, happy birthday! It’s his 154th birthday today! 154 years ago today he was born to Sir William (noted oculist and aorist once accused of chloroforming and raping one of his lady patients, which was very scandalous) and Lady Jane Francesca (it was Frances really but she fancied herself descended from Dante, her maiden name Elgee supposedly being a corruption of Alighieri so she made her name sound more Italian) Wilde. I can’t help thinking he should have rejoiced more in his given name instead of abandoning it upon reaching adulthood: Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde. He said that eventually he was going to become so famous that he would be down to one name. (Like Dante.) Oscar Wilde charms me.

I have many, many facts about Oscar Wilde in my mind. At one point I was going to write a thesis on him, but then I decided I didn’t want to at all, so here I am, packed full of interesting facts about Oscar Wilde and his friends and relations, all dressed up and nowhere to go. I have strong feelings about his friends and relations, by the way. Very, very strong feelings. For instance I feel confident that Ada Leverson and I would have gotten on famously. If I had only been born a really long time ago, I could have encouraged her to ditch her worthless husband sooner, and we could have stayed in England and been BFF and talked about the good old days before England was such an ass to our good buddy Oscar. (Her birthday was 10 October. Libra.) Bosie’s was 22 October, but if ever I saw a totally-not-Libra completely-Scorpio, it’s Lord Horrible Bosie Alfred Horrible Douglas. One time I had this dream that he came over to my house in tears because he missed Oscar Wilde so much, and I pretended to comfort and console him when really all the time I was pumping him for information about Oscar Wilde. I told him he was a great poet, maybe even better than Shelley (He said this himself one time, that he was such an amazing poet he’d been compared favorably with Shelley. Bosie, you make me throw up.), and he sniffled and told me lots of interesting things Oscar Wilde said and did. It was an extremely satisfying dream.

I also dreamt once that I met Oscar Wilde, and I ran to fetch my voice recorder in order to record his reportedly beautiful voice, but it was out of batteries. That was less satisfying, and it’s the only time I’ve ever dreamt about meeting Oscar Wilde. Although I would like to.

So celebrate, everyone! Oscar Wilde was born today!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Harry Potter's first Christmas

Well, okay, not his first. But his first nice one! Well, I guess his second nice one, since I’m sure his very first Christmas was a lot of fun as his parents were still alive, but he was only very, very tiny then. So his first remembered Christmas, the one at Hogwarts where he gets his Invisibility Cloak. I started reading that Christmas chapter this morning right before I went to work, and although I didn’t get to the bit where he gets all his presents, I still became super excited about Christmas’s imminent arrival. Plus, there has been weather that is somewhat cooler than incredibly hot; plus, it’s mid-October now, which is about the time my mind gets into the Christmas mindset, if all’s right with the world. Since I do not have midterms to worry about (ha!), and I will not have finals (ha!), I am free to focus on the joyous fact that Christmas is in two and a half months! 72 days remain! It is time to start considering Christmas gifts for those I love! I have already got plans for one, two, three, four people – my older sister, my old work people, one of my friends, and my darling aunty (one of my darling aunties; I have like twenty of them, but I only do Christmas presents for the ones in town). Oh, and I suppose I have something in mind for my grandmother too, because she – like me – is always happy to have new books.

Oh! Oh! And Christmas cards! I am a total grown-up now, and that means I’m going to send Christmas cards out! Oh, I’m so excited! Fabulous Christmas cards, I shall go shopping for them tomorrow! And I shall make a list of people to whom I wish to send Christmas cards! All my beloved family members will know that I am thinking of them with love in my heart in this most joyous Christmas season! I’m so glad that my aunt and uncle gave me some of their Christmas records, or else I wouldn’t have any Christmas music to play around my room. Oo, except that Roches CD. I’m going to play that Roches CD tonight before I go to bed. Wonderful Roches! Wonderful Christmas!

I am in a ridiculously good mood now. Not sure if it’s because I’ve just started reading Harry Potter over again, or because I thought of Christmas, and Christmas always puts me in a good mood. I love Christmas! Christmas is a wonderful holiday! I love presents! I love buying presents, and I love hiding presents in my closet, and wrapping presents up in shiny paper, and coming out to the living room on Christmas morning to behold the glorious heap of presents beneath the tree! Capitalist materialism is fun! If the dominant paradigm is wonderful Christmas, it does not need to be subverted but EMBRACED. Want “Deck the Halls” stuck in your head? Come to me! I am already singing it! Nobody can tell me it’s too early! I’m my own woman! Hurrah for Christmas carols!

I have not had a good Christmas since starting this blog. My 2006 Christmas was far from home and my family and came very shortly before a break-up; my 2007 Christmas was far from home and came very shortly after a death in the family. You would think that these things might have soured my love affair with Christmas, but no, they haven’t even approached damaging my transcendent love for the joyful Christmas season. When it is Christmas, my wonderful uncle Jim comes to visit, and we give him lots of hugs and affection because we know he has missed us in the months (or weeks, as it may be) since he has seen us last. We make delicious sugar cut-out cookies with each other. Sometimes we go camping and eat yummy brisket and red beans and rice and read Forever Amber with Bonnie. We play Christmas music and sing Christmas songs and hang Christmas lights and it’s just the most best time of year. Christmas! Christmas! Christmas!

(In the interests of full disclosure about holidays, Halloween and Thanksgiving are also coming up. Whatever. It’s all about Christmas.)

On my way to grab some food this evening, I stopped at the Dollar Tree and bought two things of wrapping paper, some sparkly red and green gift bags, white tissue paper, and two things of Christmassy to-from tags. It was joyful. Only one of the things of wrapping paper was Christmas-themed. The other one was just awesome. People with upcoming birthdays will see.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

What my mother said to me yesterday

She said: "This book (Jodi Picoult's Vanishing Acts) was very absorbing. I stayed up all night reading it."

And I, knowing that my mother doesn't stay up past eight, said: "Really?"

And my mother said: "Yes. Till ten-thirty!"

In other news, I watched a really depressing football game today. I went straight home before it was over and I read that bit of the sixth Harry Potter book where Ron succeeds in turning the Gryffindor Quidditch season around, to cheer myself up (it didn't work). CBS had the meanest commentators ever and they loathed LSU obviously, and I now completely decline to ever watch CBS again. I mean, my God, CBS, WE GET IT ALREADY. YOU ARE FELLATING THE ENTIRE FLORIDA TEAM ON THE SIDE. QUIT REPLAYING THAT AWFUL PLAY.

However, my aunt and uncle, with whom I watched the football game until we all got too depressed to continue, learned that I had purchased a record player, and they gave me all their old records. Now, this includes some Barry Manilow ones, giving me the opportunity to mock my aunt for her previous musical tastes by singing "Copacabana" at every commercial break (now it's stuck in my head, so that'll teach me to make fun of the music people used to like before they wised up), but it also includes the Jesus Christ Superstar album that she got when she was twelve, the Jesus Christ Superstar album that I love like my life, the version of Jesus Christ Superstar that is my desert island record. Also Cat Stevens, Simon & Garfunkel, Diana Ross, Grease, and many other things.

Friday, October 10, 2008

You know what's MORE annoying than having an earworm that you don't recognize?

I WILL TELL YOU. Forgetting to look up the song on the internet when you finally get back near a computer after hours on your feet, then remembering again while you are in the middle of cooking a rather messy dinner, then forgetting again after everyone goes home, then the next day at work remembering that there was a song stuck in your head yesterday for six hours and you wanted to find out what it was but being unable to remember how the damn song went.


Monday, October 6, 2008

Life is weird.

Today I danced in my room. I had no alcohol in me at all. I. Danced. (Sober.)

...That is the magic of the New Pornographers on vinyl. It's true what everybody's been saying. Music just sounds better when it is coming off a record.


So I was just trying to figure out why nobody ever talks about quail from heaven - like, God sent manna, yes, but why does that get all the attention? Exodus cares more about the manna, and everybody always talks about manna from heaven, and that's special and everything, but quail is more filling! It has a greater capacity for funny Dick Cheney jokes! QUAIL IS BETTER.

Anyway, I ran a Google search for "God sent quail to the Israelites", and Google suggested that perhaps I had meant to search "God sent mail to the Israelites."

Dear Israelites,

Quitcher bitching. Behave yourselves and listen to Moses or no milk and honey for you.

You better love Me,
The Lord

(Postmarked from Mt. Sinai.)

A confession

Bunnies aren't just cute like everybody supposes!
They've got them hoppy legs and twitchy little noses
And what's with all the carrots?
What do they need such good eyesight for anyway?

Okay, my confession is not about bunnies. It is about kittens. I am secretly a little frightened of them. (Well, it's not a secret now. Obviously.)

Yesterday evening my friend Lauren sent me a link to this picture. And okay, yeah, it's kinda cute. The kittens are climbing! They are hungry for their food! Part of my mind acknowledges that this is the case, the cuteness and the climbing and the hungry. The other part of me thinks, THIS IS FUCKING TERRIFYING. I mean, this woman is not in any danger - there are not that many kittens, and someone else is there, taking the picture, so if the kittens went insane the photographer could come to her aid. But that is too many swarming climbing kittens in one place.

Kittens have unstable personalities. They DO. One second they'll be curled up on your lap cuddling with you, and the next second they'll have lost their little kitten minds and they'll be off climbing the walls or hunting your toes or gnawing on your records. You just don't know what they'll do! There is a REASON people only buy one or two kittens at a time! There is a REASON people always want to give their kittens away to good homes! It is because they do not want the kittens to RISE UP IN REVOLT AND KILL THEM.

I think this is because when I was young, my friend down the street had kittens, and I hated spending the night at her place (I mean, I liked it, but I didn't like these damn kittens), because Nigel and Eli would run around crazy at night, and it was rather frightening, because it was all dark, and then out of nowhere little needle claws would attack my fingers and wake me up. What if they felt like sleeping on top of my nose and mouth? WHAT ABOUT THAT?

Er, but most of me thinks kittens are cute. As long as I don't have to sleep in a house with kittens. And as long as I can lock them in a room when I have tired of them.

Sunday, October 5, 2008


Seriously. I am very, very, very happy. I bought two new pairs of shoes, one of which is a completely unsensible pair of shoes. I saw my amazing uncle Jim and gave him lots of hugs, more than usual because I was giving hugs for Robyn too. And also I BOUGHT A RECORD PLAYER.

It is the best record player ever! It was only twenty dollars and I got it at Goodwill and I got speakers for seven bucks apiece, so the whole thing was a little over thirty dollars. And I bought a bunch of records at Goodwill also, and after I bought those records I went to the library and on the way back I went to THE BEST STORE EVER, i.e., The Compact Disc Store. It's so great! There's a dog! There are records! It's near the comic book store! And I bought a bunch of used LPs, and additionally I got new ones because all the cool bands release their records on vinyl too - apparently because all the records I looked for were there - so I got the Decemberists' Picaresque, and my favorite Shins album (Chutes Too Narrow), and one by the New Pornographers (and the guy said he thought they'd be getting some Neko Case records in soon too), and also I bought Abbey Road new. Because I like it.

Records are awesome. I am sitting in my room nostalgically listening to Man of La Mancha, which I used to listen to when I was a kid before my father gave away all our records (yes! he did! All of them! Though I begged him to desist!), and I am just as happy as a clam. Some people say it doesn't make a difference but I say it's the difference that makes it.

(That's from Empire Records.)

I ate dinner at my parents' house after I went on this records-buying spree, and when I came in the house with all my new records, my mother was totally unimpressed. She said "You paid for these?" and she said it was just like if I had come home all excited because I! Had bought! A push lawnmower! She said records are hard to deal with and easily damaged and out-of-date, and we should embrace the way of the future. But instead of that I think I want to embrace the way of the past, which includes large cool cover art, lyrics, and a pleasant crackly noise when you put them in.

Each time I think of the many records I now own (I mean, not tons and tons and tons. I think I probably have about fifteen of them? Fifteen or twenty?), I heave a happy sigh. I love my lovely new records. I have speakers in my room. I have a record player. I cleverly fixed the needle so it's not unbalanced and dangly anymore. I have cool records and a new favorite store. This was a good weekend.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Anne-Julie Aubry

I totally love Anne-Julie Aubry! I'm so sad I never knew about Anne-Julie Aubry until today! She is an illustrator and I totally love these prints. If I had any remaining wall space, I would buy these prints and put them up in my bedroom. Here are some of the ones I like the best:


Snow White

Portrait at the White Rat - she says she dreams to own this sort of friend, a little rat.

The Red Room

This one may be my most favorite. It has a pirate ship! Hunters Princess

I actually like a bunch of them, but I'll quit linking to them. Thoughts? Aren't they nice? I set one of them as my desktop background. Not one of those. A different one that works well with my desktop icons. I really like it! Hooray!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Talk Like Sarah Palin Day

It's today!

Or any day between now and the day we forget all about Sarah Palin. You can choose! Today I went to see Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist with Vey and Laura, and Vey explained how it was Talk Like Sarah Palin Day. It's hard to sustain at first, and you are prone to lapse into other stupid accents, but as time goes on things get easier. The hardest thing for me is trying to remember not to say naughty curse words.

Silly me

I watched Pushing Daisies last night. As time has gone by since the end of Pushing Daisies last year (last year?), I have gotten less and less fond of it. I have remembered it being far too sweet, and I have watched Wonderfalls a few times and found Pushing Daisies severely lacking by comparison. Furthermore, I have had to abandon my crush on Lee Pace because my friend says he is gay, and I obviously cannot marry someone who is gay. So I suspected that I was not as fond of Pushing Daisies as I had previously supposed myself to be, like when it first came out.

However, last night I watched the season premiere of Pushing Daisies, and I don't know what my cranky-ass problem was. Pushing Daisies is wonderful! Emerson Cod is snarky. He balances out the sweetness, and Lee Pace is still very cute and sweet, and he went and got all of Chuck's books! Plus it is a clever and a well-written show, even when horrifying things happen like a person composed entirely of bees. Ick.

Aw, Pushing Daisies. No wonder I liked it so much before.

Last night there was no Office because of the VP debates. Sarah Palin is ridiculous, and her accent is silly, and I was really looking forward to watching The Office last night. Pooh.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Miscellaneous reflections following my first day of work

At work we have snacks in jars, and one of the jars is all full of animal crackers, and they are the brand of animal crackers that is rhinos and goats and cows and donkeys and elephants and buffalo and camels and lions, but no monkeys. Not a monkey anywhere. That must be a different brand, with the monkeys. But every time I eat animal crackers, I think of this time Oz told Willow that the monkey was the only animal cracker animal with clothes, and he wondered whether the monkey mocked the other animal crackers with his monkey pants. But there are no monkeys in my animal crackers. It always bugs me a little. So does eating camels. I love camels! I don’t want to eat them! When I am scooping up animal crackers for myself, I try to steer around the camels.

I do not much care for black coffee, which is quite bitter, but I drink it anyway because I am 1) afraid of becoming a yuppie and thus disinclined to purchase trendy mocha-type drinks; and (more important) 2) too lazy to bother about putting it sugar and cream and then stirring it adequately so it doesn’t all settle on the bottom. I greatly enjoy writing in coffee shops because sometimes really awful people come in for long or short lengths of time and talk about all the really awful things they and their friends have done, and it is fun to eavesdrop on them.

My new laptop has a clit mouse. I have not used a computer with a clit mouse since before I learned what a clitoris was. Fortunately (fortunately because otherwise I would kill myself) it also has a touchpad.

Whenever I see those signs that say “No shirt, no shoes, no service” or “Shirt and shoes required” or whatever, I always always check myself to make sure I am meeting these requirements. I have not paid a lot of attention to this previously, but I was strolling into the library yesterday on my lunch break, and I did it twice in such rapid succession (at the entrance and then at the door to the stairwell) that I couldn’t help but notice. My brain went, Shirt? Check. Shoes? Check. Okay, we’re good to go! My feet paused for this moment of consideration. I guess in case I ever lose my mind and accidentally go out without a shirt on, this will be handy because I won't also have to get booted out of a library or wherever.

That's silly.

On my lunch break after going to the library, I read Lux the Poet, which I had on hold at the library and which had just, just, just come in when I got there. I am reading it as a substitute for Suzy, Led Zeppelin, and Me, which I have not yet read because I’m delaying gratification until some as-yet-undetermined point in the future. I still really like Martin Millar. His books are so sweet. Lux the Poet is all about an angel who got framed and booted out of heaven so she’s doing loads of good deeds to get back into heaven. Except that’s not what it’s all about, that’s only one bit of the whole thing. But it’s my favorite bit, although the other bits are also good. The aforementioned angel is very tired but she carries on giving coats to bums and helping little old ladies across the street because if she carries on doing that long enough, she’ll get to go back to heaven again. There is also a funny poet not altogether unlike the poet in The Graveyard Book (the poet in The Graveyard Book was not heavily featured enough for my tastes, so it’s very pleasing to be reading Lux the Poet so soon after), and a girl with a film, and an angry thrash metal band called the Jane Austen Mercenaries. Martin Millar makes me smile.

Also, an unexpected side effect of becoming a rockin’ guitar chick: The cuticles on my right hand are suffering. I am a compulsive cuticle-pusher-backer, and I ceaselessly push back the cuticles on one hand with the fingernails of the other. Now that I am keeping the fingernails on my left hand trimmed very short in order to play chords more effectively (dude, C#m is unreasonably difficult. It’s almost a C! Why must I spread out my fingers so dramatically just to play it?), those fingernails are not long enough to push back the cuticles on my right hand. IT IS DRIVING ME INSANE. I am thinking of playing only chords that require three fingers, and giving up using my ring finger in guitar-playing, just so I can grow that fingernail out and continue pushing back cuticles when I wish to push back cuticles.

And before you ask – No, pushing back my cuticles does not give me hangnails. I’ve been doing it for a while and I have cuticle-pushing finesse now. Lucky me.