Wednesday, April 27, 2005

A Crowning Achievement

Dear 6-Year-Old Me,
I'm sending this letter back through time to tell you something very important. You know how you avoid brushing your teeth? How you'll go to the trouble of wetting the toothbrush so mom won't know you're being passive aggressively sneaky? Well--knock it off. The vague sense of freedom you have now will backfire on you in a year or so, when you have to have fillings in all of your 6-year molars. But it doesn't stop there, my little friend. Ohhhh, no. Almost three decades hence, what's left of those same molars is going to start breaking away, bit by bit, until all that's left is the base of the tooth and all those fillings. You know what happens then? They make you get a crown. Yeah, the gold kind. No, it's still not cool. And it's not cheap either. So get your ass into the bathroom and start brushing. Oh, and when you get to college, you might want to think about majoring in something that actually leads to a clear career path--it could save us some serious time. But that's up to you.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

You've Got Hail!
Originally uploaded by me.
What Next, Rain of Frogs?

The unexpected 15 minutes of hail here on Friday coincided nicely with the first night of Passover yesterday. We didn't even need Li's Bag O' Plagues to provide versimilitude for Plague # 7.But my favorite of the 10 was the hopping frog, operated by squeezing a rubber bulb; for some reason he kept hopping up against the bottle of kosher Cabernet Sauvignon, as if begging us to pour him a glass. Poor little guy.

Anyway, as always, a lovely seder thrown by Li. And as always, Ed had a new zombie DVD to show me--this one, and I'm seriously debating whether I should watch it or not, involves costumed Mexican wrestlers fighting off the zombie menace. Ed deems it the worst film he's ever seen, which I find hard to grasp considering he also owns "Passion of the Zombie Christ" and "Nudist Colony of the Dead."

On that twisted note, I need to get back to work. Happy Pesach--

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

It's the Most...Hor-ri-ble Time...of the Year!

Why don't the networks have holiday specials celebrating the final month of the semester in November and April? Everyone could get on the bandwagon. "It's Your GPA, Charlie Brown!" "The Little, Dumber Boy." "Twas the Night Before Finals." And Rankin-Bass could do a special where Frosty the Snowman (voiced by Burl Ives) melts while studying in the library--"All they found was his hat, a book on Latin noun declensions, and a big puddle...." So sad. Did you ever wonder why Frosty didn't just toss Karen into that greenhouse and then go back outside? What the hell was wrong with him? And while we're on the subject of Rankin-Bass holiday specials, did anyone else think that the villain in "The Incredibles" looked just like Heat Miser from "The Year Without a Santa Claus?" (Well, apparently the person I just linked to did. Thank you, google image search!)

See, this is why I never get any work done. I have two huge projects looming over me, one of which I've barely started--or rather, I started it, found out that my subject is utterly unresearchable without a massive travel grant that i don't have, and stopped in a fit of depression. So what am I doing instead? I'm uploading pictures to Flickr. I'm endlessly checking my email. I'm watching all the commentaries on Firefly. I'm watching basketball--Indiana beat Toronto after playing about 40 minutes of just horrible defense, and it was painful to watch yet I didn't turn it off! The heck with Frosty, what the hell's wrong with ME? I'm melting in the greenhouse with Karen, yet I don't have the sense to go outside and close the door!

The great thing about blogging is that I can go back to the last several Novembers and Aprils and realize that I do this to myself every friggin year. I have weeks of horrible guilt and agonizing, followed by one-two passionate weeks of insane work powered by Mountain Dew, followed by a huge sigh of relief and perfectly adequate grades. It would be perfect if I could just leave out the agonizing part and skip straight to the work and the sighing. Apparently the guilt is encoded in my DNA though.... Oh well. It's almost time for the insanity stage anyway.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Originally uploaded by me.
Insert Photos Here

Ok, I really, REALLY need to clean up my living room. It's like a friggin homework bomb went off in here, I've got books and papers on every surface, important sources for my projects comingling with junk mail and phone bills that need paying. Not to mention the 47 Eastern Auxiliary cavalry I painted three weeks ago (I have no idea where #48 went, there should be 4 dozen but one's galloped off apparently) which are sitting on the coffee table waiting for me to put fake grass on them and send them to New Jersey. So no time for blogging! Amuse yourselves, in my absence, with the photos from my trip to Vegas. If you view it as a slideshow you don't get my somewhat verbose captions. You can decide for yourselves if this is a good thing.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Me with Hal
Originally uploaded by me.

OK, so this photo was a little bit staged. As there are usually no witnesses to this phenomenon, I had to take advantage of it when Hal was in a snuggling mood while I had a friend over. But it really was morning, and I hadn't combed my hair yet. Anyway, more proof that I have a great cuddly cat, we sleep like this all the time. On the flip side, this is why I live on over-the-counter allergy drugs.

Those who have met Hal usually deem him one of the dumber cats they've encountered after knowing him for a few minutes. He's huge, he's goofy, and he persists in doing things that aren't good for him. However, he occasionally has shining moments of cat genius, like last night for instance. We got a new type of fish-flavored cat treats a few weeks ago (free in the bin of Tidy Cat.) They have the slightly over-the-top name of "Aquari-Yums," and they come in a plastic screwtop bottle. I figured this was a good thing, as Hal will chew through the plastic/foil packets of our usual treat brand if he can get hold of them. So the other night I opened the Aquari-Yums and gave him and Harper a sample. They went over well, and I screwed the top back on and put the bottle on my bedside table. No worries. Then last night, I'm sitting on the couch and I hear Hal scratching around in the bedroom. I figure he's probably just in the sandbox; he can be pretty industrious, so I didn't think much about it until the scratching and thumping had gone on for several minutes. I was just getting ready to go see what the hell was up when he came bouncing into the living room with a piece of green plastic in his mouth, which he dropped in front of me and then looked up expectantly. It was the screwtop to the treat jar. I went in the bedroom, and he had knocked the bottle off the table and into the trash can, where it landed upright; apparently he'd gotten the lid off, but still couldn't get at the treats because the bottle didn't fall over. So he came out to request my assistance in his crime--"Hey, hi, I got this thing off, but there's something still not right here, could you give me a hand?" It worked, of course, I rewarded his ingenuity before moving the jar (lid restored) to a new undisclosed location. Wow, though. What a cat.

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