Monday, March 31, 2003

You know it's a bad day when....

Today I went to the Summit Occupational Health Clinic for my first work-related drug test ever. Yes, the zoo requires it. (What do they think people are going to do, get high and fall into the penguin pool? Oh, wait...) So I went, even before breakfast, figuring that since I hadn't gone (in the wc sense) since 11 last night I'd probably be able to supply the necessary sample. But no. Nooooo. My tendency to tense up in public restrooms, which has been pretty well mastered in the last 10 years or so, returned with a vengance. I wasn't helped by the fact that the nurse informed me, "If you can't go, then you have to wait another hour and try again. No, you can't leave and come back tomorrow." If that's not a threat, I don't know what is. So I chugged a Mountain Dew, walked around, and tried to go. No go. An hour later, I was doubled over in bladder-screaming agony in the waiting room, begging them to call me back in. They finally did. I couldn't go. I mean, I was in actual physical pain, and yet the tiny muscles down there were somehow saying, "Now is not the time!" Holy crap. Finally, by methods which I won't elaborate in this forum of good taste, I was able to fill the cup. It was awful. I never want to do this again. (Have a drug test, that is, not urination in general.)

And Charles was kind enough to point out that IUPUI was the 16th seed in the NCAA tourney, not the 14th. Thanks Chuck. :] But we lost, and IU lost, and Purdue lost, and Butler finally lost. So that's that! On to more important things, like the NBA Championships!

Friday, March 21, 2003

Hoop Dream?

I don't know how many of you (all 6 of you) are basketball fans; my guess is none. However, I feel the need to inform you that something miraculous is happening today. My current school, IUPUI, is playing in the first round of the men's NCAA basketball tournament today. This is unheard of--to the best of my knowledge, IUPUI has never experienced anything like this before. This is a school where the average student age is about 26, where most students are commuters--essentially, there ain't no Michael-Jordan-style scholarships luring players to IUPUI. In fact, IUPUI drawing its student base almost exclusively from the Indianapolis area, they're in an even worse situation in that every local high school basketball prodigy goes to either I.U. or Purdue; that's the problem with a state so obsessed with one sport as Indiana is with basketball. But here's IUPUI, playing in the first round today, ranked 14th in the Midwest division--and they're playing #1 ranked Kentucky. My prediction is that UK will wad up IUPUI like a used kleenex in the first 5 minutes and then dunk them repeatedly into the trash can. BUT... I still feel a sort of tiny sense of pride about IUPUI's presence there at all. Go, Jaguars, go.

Sunday, March 16, 2003

Well, at least I come by it honestly...

My dad’s in Costa Rica right now. As many of you know, I maintain that the secret to my parents’ long marriage is that they frequently take seperate vacations. Well, that and two full sets of covers on the bed. Anyway, so dad is happily paddling around in the rainforest (I hope) and my mom is eating shrimp and cocktail sauce for dinner every night. We call this “eating single week.” I went over there for dinner tonight, as I do most Sundays--no shrimp, she hoards that, instead it was irish stew and bright green biscuits--and we had a pleasant conversation about a number of family-related topics. The reason I’m bringing this up is for those of my friends who believe that I am somehow responsible for all the ludicrous personal accidents that occur in my life--in point of fact, it’s genetic. I was telling her about chopping up some massive dead branches in my yard with the big axe Dad unwisely purchased for me last summer, and from there we segued to a fond discussion of my 88 year old grandpa, who once managed to hit himself in the head with an axe. Since he’s now 88 and one of the sharpest people I know, it apparently didn’t affect him much. I’d heard about this accident before; but mom added a new dimension to the whole genetics theory by telling me about the time (c.1950) Grandpa tried out the neighbor’s new power mower. Being unable to turn it off when he was done, he decided that instead of walking it to the sidewalk and up the neighbor’s driveway, he’d just lift it over the hedge that separated the two yards. Yes. Lifted. A running power mower. Over a hedge. Of course, it only made it halfway over the hedge before his grip slipped, and the mower fell on his leg and carved a large chunk out of his thigh.

Lest you think that this gene skips generations, may I point out that my mother once bludgeoned herself in the head with a phone receiver by accident and had to get 20 stitches.

It’s not my fault, I tell you!

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

Spring? Sproing!

Yep, it's finally getting warmer here, in little bitty increments. Yesterday it was 20 degrees out. Today it's near 50. Last Saturday we hit 60, to be promptly followed by 35 Sunday. I swear I wouldn't live anywhere else, each one of these warm days is like a shiny jewel during March. I'm turning my back porch into a greenhouse for seed starting (no promises on success, but I have my hopes) and the compost bin I ordered through the mail just showed up last week. 100% recycled plastic, from a distance it looks like wood and up close it looks like melted-down car tire slag. Which is probably what it is, of course.

School proceeds apace, it's a good thing that Spring Break is next week because I've gotten awfully apathetic about finishing my reading for each class. I thought about trying to find someplace I could roadtrip to, just to make it seem more like a real "Spring Break"--after all, it'll probably be the last one I ever have. Barring disaster I should be finished with the Museum Studies certificate by next January. Anyway, so I gave it some thought and realized 1) I don't have any money, 2) there's no place I really feel like going that I can get to quickly, and 3) I should spend the break painting miniatures. Suddenly I have a surfeit of painting jobs, there's a nice man in New York city who seems perfectly willing to have me do a huge quantity of stuff for him and wants to pay in advance. So really, I ought to get cracking on that. I'm full of fear, got an email today from a guy who wants me to do a bunch of Spanish Succession Wars 6mm figures--6mm scale figures being approx the height of your little fingernail. That's smaller than I've ever done, no idea what to charge or how much of a pain in the ass it will be. Bah. As Bert would say.