Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Despair, if nothing else, is a private matter. The mind isn't required to share such information. That's because the soul is the master of its own short-circuitry, the system shutdown, the fading pulse that monitors the brokenness of both spirit and heart. When a state of mind sinks to a point where the life itself--the day-to-day engagements, the nightly slumber and silences--becomes unbearable, who are we to second-guess or armchair analyze? There was no way to properly insert oneself inside the minds of the Levins and follow the logic of [Holocaust]survivors who would one day choose a synagogue as the setting to turn off their own life-support systems.
This Ghost World paper is LITERALLY the best paper I've ever written! I have 1.5 pages left and it's going to be a problem keeping it SHORT ENOUGH. So many ideas. My head just may explode.
Listening: "Voice Inside My Head" (literally)...Dixie Chicks
Edit, 5:30: DONE! So done.
Monday, May 29, 2006
I loved this vase from the moment I saw it! The lyrics to "Hey Jude" are impressed into it. Everything these folks had was gorgeous. Visit their site HERE. Note: Sorry! The Beatles pottery site is down. I'll see if I can get a new addy for them!
The woman who did this photograph was great. She's based out of Austin and all her work features little tiny figurines in odd settings. I loved this one, entitled "Booksmarts" the best. There was another one with a little man standing in the middle of a crossword puzzle. As I spoke to her about this particular photo, she said the larger statue was actually of a mathematician working intently on a proof, which brought to mind my much-obsessed-over favorite movie, Proof. Elise and I watched it last night. Visit the photographer's site HERE.
I'm a sucker for glass beads. I've had an influx of green clothing lately, so these will go perfectly with just about anything.
These are probably my favorite. I was admiring a ring Elise was wearing yesterday and her earrings. Turns out the lady who made them was at Artfest, so I indulged in these amber earrings and ring. They're odd and classy. Love them long time. Go HERE to see more.
If you were interested in the damaged heart pendant, check out the artist's SITE. It's under construction, but hopefully it'll be up soon.
It was a great day. Not too hot, slightly overcast, and we only ran into one professor and his wife (ugg). I had my very first fried Snicker (I want a t-shirt that says, "I was a Snicker virgin"). One of our best play dates yet.
Listening: "Voice Inside My Head"...Dixie Chicks, co-written with Linda Perry!
Trying to figure out: What the hell I wanna say in my Ghost World paper.
To your left is one of the many goodies I purchased at Artfest today. It shall soon be a necklace.
It's 3 am, so I won't be blogging substantially until tomorrow. Here's what to expect:
The complete report over today's fantabulous playdate with Elise.
A lengthy diatribe about the shitty state of the world, and my thoughts on the Dixie Chicks' new album (yes, I'll be discussing "the comment" that was made about the "war on terrorism" that got all the world's fuckwits angry with the chicks). The new album is amazing. I was iffy at first, but I'm now 100% sure that it's amazing and Natalie is my #1 girl-crush.
I know you said
Can't you just get over it
It turned my whole world around
And I kind of like it
I made my bed and I sleep like a baby
I'm not ready to make nice
I'm not ready to back down
I'm still mad as hell and
I don't have to go round and round and round
It's too late to make it right
And probably wouldn't if I could
Cause I'm mad as hell
Can't bring myself to do what it is you think I should
Sunday, May 28, 2006
Sojourness is in Venice! She was kind enough to invite me to read her travelogue, so I've been positively drooling over pictures of canals and basilicas and Venetian bookstores. The girl can take a hell of a pleasing picture.
I. love. travel. LOVE it.
As an undergraduate I had planned to do Baylor's British studies program at Oxford, but I decided to transfer to my current university before I could go. While I don't regret it, it's one of those things I REALLY wish I'd gotten to do.
A few years ago my cousin, who I'm very close to, found that his job required him to travel to various European locales anywhere from a week to six weeks at a time. He found himself in London, Amsterdam, Prague, you name it. He planned to take me to Amsterdam with him for a four-week stay since he'd racked up uncountable frequent flier miles, but, alas, it didn't work out.
After I came back from North Carolina, I discovered The Travel Channel's FABULOUS show, 5 Takes. At the time I discovered it the travel journalists were exploring Europe (this season is the Pacific Rim). The catch: you get $50 a day for all expenses: travel, food, whatever. Needless to say, there are lots of hostels and sleeping on trains, but to me it looked like HEAVEN. What makes it a big bummer for me? You have to have filmmaking experience. I'm still trying to figure out how to convince them that a literary person would bring an un-say-no-able slant to an already amazing show. It's very Real World/Road Rules without all the hosebags and whores.
There you have it--two nearish misses and one pipe dream to a European excursion and no luck for Andi. So, until a real chance for big travel comes along, I'll probably spend a few days in Memphis eating ribs, listening to blues, and touring the kitsch capital of the US...Graceland!
I'm curious to know: where's your favorite place you've travelled, in or outside the US? Give me ideas to add to my pipe full o'dreams.
Note: I'm still actively pursuing an African excursion. I've found a couple of orgs that send people for six-week trips, and that's sounding pretty good for post-Masters degree.
Today Elise and I have made the very-last-minute decision to go for Indian food and Artfest...the closest you can get to an exotic experience in Texas. I should just move to Addison so I can terrorize the world along with the Texas Princess. I might have to live in a cardboard box, but we all have to make sacrifices.
Saturday, May 27, 2006
Which Classic Female Literary Character Are you?
You're Elizabeth Bennett of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen!
Take this quiz!
Let the reading begin!
Friday, May 26, 2006
Can we say "recommendation letter?"
Say it together now!
In the end, I got an A+ on the presentation. I never realized there would still be A+'s in grad school, but I think I can certainly respect and accept that grade.
Listening: "The Difficult Kind"...Sheryl Crow
Thursday, May 25, 2006
Two more days of class after today. Maybe then I'll be somewhat amusing again.
Then I'll be teaching a night class at the junior college. The little sloths are already e-mailing me trying to make deals about being late, making up work, getting me to e-mail work. And the first class day isn't until next week. I'm putting my bitch face on as we speak.
Pointless TV: Today show
Reading: film theory and more short stories
In my head: Hunger pains
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
OH MY GOD. Best season finale ever in the history of the world. *squee*
As usual, many spoilers in the comments section, so don't read it if you don't wanna know how great that House!Cameron moment with the robot and the button and the air to the belly button was!
Like the title says...just one of those days. It seems like every car in front of me today is going 40 in a 70, everything turns to dust or shit in my hand, and I'm actually surprisingly upbeat about it.
I left my house at 10am in a vain effort to go do some work away from the lusty pull of books and sweet puppies to pet. I got to the jc (junior college, not to be confused with tgljc) with a plan to print some things for my presentation over Ghost World tomorrow. No go. The printer was GONE. Not just not working--GONE. So I tromped back out to the car and came on to the university. Again, slow people in front of me who were physically and mentally unable to merge onto the interstate for whatever ungodly reason.
When I got to C'vegas I stopped off at Brookshire's to get Excedrin Tension Headache (yeah, I had one of those too) and possibly some lunch from the deli. The deli was unappealing to the max, so I grabbed my legal drug of choice and managed to run into D-rock (one of my profs, on my thesis committee) who wanted to talk at me while I was attempting to master the minion of evil also known as the debit card reader. I'm not a masterful multi-tasker when it comes to credit card machines, so I'm sure I said something stupid at some point. Anyway, he loves Ghost World, so we bonded a little to make up for the awkwardness.
Went on my merry way to the home of the downfall of western civilization--McDonald's--because the one here is unbelievably quick. Except today. I made the mistake of ordering a PREMIUM spicy chicken sandwich. 20 minutes later--20 MINUTES--I had my sammich and was back on the road.
I was in virtual panic mode at that point and a rising state of pissedoffedness and thinking of all the shit I needed to do before class. I got to the uni, printed my crap, and went to make the copies in the office, at which time the xerox machine decided to be an asshole. First it printed all my handouts on blue paper and then stopped working completely. A little begging, CPR, and help from the secretary later, I had my work printed, I finished reading the short story for today, and now my life makes sense again.
I'm going to Eil's house for House, M.D., Chinese food, and the biggest cherry vodka sour I can mix tonight. Let's just hope Yen Jing doesn't explode before I get there. And I sure won't order anything premium.
Listening: "Brand New Day"...Forty Foot Echo
Just finished reading: "The Swimmer"...John Cheever - A+
Going: to class for 4.5 hours! 4 days left!
Monday, May 22, 2006
20 Years Ago: (age 5) I was beginning to learn to read and it was not easy going. It's the perfect irony, I suppose, that while I now devour books like the choicest drug, I had a hard time learning to read. Admittedly, I'm a bit of a nutty perfectionist and I got SO ANNOYED learning to read. I didn't wanna do it unless I did it perfectly. That said, at the age of five I enjoyed Sesame Street books and She-Ra Princess of Power the most. No highbrow stuff at that age, thankyouverymuch.
10 Years Ago: (age 15) I was a total whore for anything horror. I was addicted to L.J. Smith's adolescent paranormal books (The Vampire Diaries...still a favorite) and Stephen King. I remember ripping through Salem's Lot and The Shining in the waiting room of a hospital when my grandfather was admitted. I also read Rose Madder in record time that year on vacation.
5 Years Ago: (age 20) I went through a long dry spell in high school and the beginnings of college. I read sometimes, but not voraciously like I do now. However, what changed all that was picking up Ernest Hemingway's A Moveable Feast--expats gone wild as I like to call it. It was gorgeous and wonderful and got me reading again.
3 Years ago: (age 22) I was back in full swing after the dry spell. Looking back in my book journal I see that I was reading The Handmaid's Tale (Atwood); The Cheese Monkeys, still one of the funniest books I've ever read (Chip Kidd); Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason...another one of the funniest books ever (Helen Fielding); and Who Cooked the Last Supper? A Women's History of the World...one of the best women's studies EVER (Rosalind Miles).
Last Year: (age 24)Was a great reading year. I hadn't yet started grad school and I was working, but I still had plenty of time to read. I think I read 58 books total, and some of the best were:
The Interpreter of Maladies (Jhumpa Lahiri)
The Golden Compass (Philip Pullman)
gods in Alabama..not a typo (Joshilyn Jackson)
The Secret History (Donna Tartt)
The Robber Bride (Margaret Atwood)
Silas Marner (George Elliot)
This Month: (age 28) Has sucked! I've been busy, so I've only read the PostSecret book, which was good, but not terribly substantial.
Booking some more
3 Favorite Reading Locations: on my stomach on my bed, on the loveseat in our sunroom, the kitchen table
3 Reading habits: I'm anal about condition of my books. I don't mind bent spines or anything, but if a cover is bent I'm likely to freak.
3 Things that distract me: TV, people talking at or around me, music. I could've just said "noise" and saved myself some time. I used to be able to block ANYTHING out, but in my old age I find that I can't do it anymore.
3 Characters I’d love to be: Estella from Great Expectations (who's surprised?), Dina from The Red Tent, Joan from Pope Joan
3 Three Characters I despise: the asshole father from Pope Joan, Jacob from The Red Tent, and Lord Asriel from His Dark Materials
3 Favorite Book Beverages: Diet green tea with citrus, vanilla-caramel coffee, caramel/chocolate chai tea
3 Favorite bookmarks: I have a huge collection of beautiful bookmarks, and I cherish them so much that I don't use them for fear of messing them up. So, I stick to store receipts and sticky notes.
3 Dead Writers I’d love to meet: Willa Cather, Flannery O'Connor, Zora Neale Hurston
3 Alive Writers I’d love to meet: Siri Hustvedt, Joyce Carol Oates, Dan Clowes
Saturday, May 20, 2006
He slowly ventured into the pond. The bottom was deep, soft clay, he sank in, and the water clasped dead cold round his legs. As he stirred he could smell the cold, rotten clay that fouled up into the water. It was objectionable in his lungs. Still, repelled and yet not heeding, he moved deeper into the pond. The cold water rose over his thighs, over his loins, upon his abdomen. The lower part of his body was all sunk in the hideous cold element. And the bottom was so deeply soft and uncertain, he was afraid of pitching with his mouth underneath. He could not swim, and was afraid.
He crouched a little, spreading his hands under the water and moving them round trying to feel for her. The dead cold pond swayed upon his chest. He moved again, a little deeper, and again, with his hands underneath, he felt all around under the water. And he touched her clothing. But it evaded his fingers. He made a desperate effort to grasp it.
And so doing he lost his balance and went under, horribly, suffocating in the foul earthy water, struggling madly for a few moments. At last, after what seemed an eternity, he got his footing, rose again into the air and looked around. He gasped, and knew he was in the world. Then he looked at the water. She had risen near him. He grasped her clothing, and drawing her nearer, turned to take his way to land again.
He went very slowly, carefully, absorbed in the slow progress. He rose higher, climbing out of the pond. The water was now only about his legs; he was thankful, full of relief to be out of the clutches of the pond. He lifted her and staggered onto the bank, out of the horror of wet, grey clay.
Now, some of you are thinking, "Hmmm, she obviously has a thing for terribly unpleasant sex." Not the case! In the context of the story this scene makes TOTAL sensual sense. The doctor doesn't realize, before he saves her, that he loves her. So this scene is the culimination of a bunch of things: him falling in love, him falling in lust, and a symbolic death and rebirth. Sex is often equated with death in literature, so this is a melding of the two. It gives me CHILLS. If you still don't get the hype, read it out loud. Our prof read it out loud and most of us turned red and felt our heads almost ready to explode. No pun intended. Not to mention I'd had a sex dream about an unlikely classmate the night before. Don't ask.
I know, I know, I've been a bad bloggrrrl. What can I say? I've been being responsible. Yesterday I was supposed to have a playdate with Elise, but she was gracious enough to let me postpone until Sunday given the fact that I REALLY needed to research for my god-forsaken film presentation and paper. The good news: I did hour upon hour of research and feel prepared to write some kickass stuff.
Today has been relatively worthless. I woke up to the sound of mom screeching, "Well that wasn't smart!" She'd apparently grabbed the blade of the electric hedge trimmers. Worry not, it was actually turned off, but the little teeth were still whirring a bit. Luckily it was not bad and she didn't even need stitches or anything. Needless to say, I finished up the hedges. We also went through phase 1 of erecting the above-ground pool today. We will likely finish the job tomorrow morning and let the bastard fill for the next two days at which time I will likely be unable to enjoy it because I'll be writing the aforementioned film paper.
Tuesday: House, MD season finale watch party at Eil's house! She and Wenchie will attend to dinner and I shall provide the cherry vodka sour fixins.
I'm hungry, but I'm gonna drink water instead of dive head first into a vat of butter-soaked popcorn. Why? Because that's what this fat girl should do in order to fit society's ideal of beauty. Society, you're such a fuckrag.
Hostility aside, I think I'm going to consolidate my book blog, Projectile Reviews, into this one. Why? Because I'm too damn lazy to keep multiple blogs. Watch for more bookishness here. I will clearly mark the bookish posts so that those allergic to the written word can steer clear.
For now (in the next post), I shall blog DH Lawrence sexiness. Watch out! Panties could spontaneously burst into flame.
Watching: Nothing decent.
Listening: "That Lonesome Road"...Dixie Chicks and James Taylor live
Edit: OH MY GOD, how could I forget to share? I'm currently the high bidder on a lot of 12 issues of Julie Doucet's underground comic, Dirty Plotte. Keep your parts crossed, babies! Pic added above for effect.
Thursday, May 18, 2006
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
Today was one of those days when I was so enamored with being in love with life that the top of my head popped off and the sun shone on my cerebral cortex and promptly sent a sparkling ray of wonderment out my ass.
Such a good day.
Class was amazing and fabulous and enlightening and I had all (ok, most) of the right answers. Yay! Rapid fire grilling can be fruitful after all. I TALKED a lot in class today, my friends. No more squelching. I go to 11, bitches ("Spinal Tap" reference!).
I broke down and bought 30 Seconds to Mars's album, A Beautiful Life and oh my GOshDAMN heavens, it's fantastic. I love this shit. It's obviously angsty and screamy, but Jared Leto's voice could well be my next man-crush. Especially if I have to divorce Hugh over what might or might not happen on the season finale of House. OK, I'm kidding, I won't divorce Hugh--"What does a guy have to do to make you hate him?"--oh I know! Knock up CUDDY! Jared Leto is not old enough or manly enough for my full attention, but his voice is like butta. The Dallas show sold out. *whine* Will definitely be reviewing this album for the June issue of Estella.
I've been thinking of everything
I used to want to be
I've been thinking of everything
Of me, of you and me
This is the story of my life
These are the lies I have created
I went to my book group meeting tonight for the first time since...August. Yep, August. I've missed those ladies. They're fun. Except for the fucknut that thought The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time was too hard to read. It was written for ADOLESCENTS. *containing my eye roll*
I'll be quoting D.H. Lawrence for you all tomorrow. He's part of the reason class went so well today. So erotic. So understated. I haven't read Lawrence in ages, and it's been TOO LONG, darlings. Lady Chatterly's Lover is coming off the shelf (no pun intended).
And before this gets any more manic, I'm going to bed. I have homework to finish in the morning.
Listening: "A Modern Myth"...30 Seconds to Mars
Reading: Some gawdawful western story in preparation for Stagecoach tomorrow
In my head: Peace with the past. I can talk to you again.
Monday, May 15, 2006
Did I mention I'm taking a May-mini course? That's right, bitches, 11 days of 4.5 hour classes. I'll be up to my eyeballs in short-story-to-film adaptations Monday through Thursday from 1:00-5:30 (or maybe a little later according to the brilliant fucking slavedriver at the helm). My mother informed me tonight that I'm a masochist
1) because I'm taking a class a mere 4 days after the others ended
2) because I like all the obscure zero-respect fields within literature..namely Children's lit and graphic narrative. What can I say? I apparently like struggle and obscurity. It's the artist figure in me that secretly wants to stick her head in the oven.
So in this particular course, we each choose a short story and its film adaptation we want to teach. I chose Daniel Clowes' graphic narrative, Ghost World and the resulting oh-so-fucking-fabulous film starring Thora Birch, Scarlett Johansson (before her breasts and her Tanya Tucker voice got her famous), and the effervescent Steve Buscemi (who, oddly enough, looks like Peter Parker's wife). It should be a good time.
In other news, I managed to scam an A in both of my classes. I checked this afternoon and they were both (finally) posted. Why scam? Because I feel like a total fraud most of the time. Someday someone will figure out that I'm not smart and take away my "English Nerd" membership card which assures me the right to analyze literature.
I'm actually--secretly in the depths of my ashen heart--glad to be taking a class. Without intellectual stimulation I turn into a horrible person who mumbles a lot, snaps the heads off of innocent bystanders, and generally thinks she's done nothing of value with her life and if she died tomorrow people would not attend the funeral.
Listening: 30 Seconds to Mars..."The Kill"
Watching: Blank TV screen
Reading: Lots of short stories
In my head: Lymph backup (generally centralized to my nose piercing)
Sunday, May 14, 2006
There is something fascinating about what moral suffering can do to someone who is in no obvious way a weak or feeble person. It's more insidious even than what physical illness can do, because there is no morphine drip or spinal block or radical surgery to alleviate it. Once you're in its grip, it's as though it will have to kill you for you to be free of it. Its raw realism is like nothing else. --The Human Stain, by Philip Roth
I'm going to love this book.
Saturday, May 13, 2006
watch other assorted TV shows (mostly of the PBS or Discovery Channel variety)
listen to music
have sex (or contemplate the lack of)
See? It's a waste of time. I love the feeling of cool sheets as much as anyone else, but the result of a comfy bed and clean sheets is usually 5-8 hours of inactivity, and that makes me crazy. If I'm going to be inactive for 5-8 hours I like to enjoy it...awake. Doing one or a combination of those things listed above.
Tonight, instead of sleeping, I've been watching TV and listening to music. I've downloaded a variety of tunes, the majority of a very angsty emo variety. For instance, did you know that Jared Leto has a band?? Remember him? He was Jordan all-silky-hair-and-killer-eyes Catalano from My So-Called Life..by far the best angsty teen show ever in the history of the world. Dawson's Creek had nothing on Angela, Ricky, Raeanne, and the MSCL crowd. So anyway, the band is called 30 Seconds to Mars. I guffawed when I saw our poor Mr. Leto on Carson Daley's show.
1. I hate Carson
2. Jared was all blacked-out..goth with cheese if you please (that's him, to the far right)
Much to my chagrin I liked the song. Oh the humanity! So I'm listening to "The Kill" over and over. Jared has quite the pleasing voice.
That one download got me contemplating other angsty emo, which led me to download "Something Beautiful" by Cauterize that I heard ages ago and never took off on radio.
That got me thinking about the other musical conversations I've had lately...mostly with Beth at drunken parties. So, I downloaded "100 Ways" by Porno for Pyros just now, and I'm enjoying it muchly.
As much as I hate sleep, my aching shoulders and back are about to win out over my desire to sit up and do mildly amusing things that make me feel productive. On that note, I go to bed.
P.S. What the hell was with the e-mails we received from the poet laureate of English 521? Anyone else find those odd and slightly needy/creepy?
Thursday, May 11, 2006
But I have a kickass title. Check this out:
"Composite Novel as Cultural Artifact: Preserving and Perpetuating Cultural Integrity Through Form in Zora Neale Hurston’s Mules and Men"
Oh YES! I got my colon in there AND it's two lines long. I feel like such a scholarly badass.
Edit: 2:00...DONE! Done done done DONE! I've been done, but I've been purring over it and looking for little ways to make it longer. It's decent. It might even be good. I could've done more, but I waited TOO LATE, and I will never wait this late again. I always say that, but I MEAN it this time. DONE! God, I wish I could go to sleep, but I have shit to do. Including sit through one last class tonight. Ugg!
In the meantime I'll be listening to celebratory music. Ben Lee and Foo Fighters anyone??
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
I know I say this every week, but last night's episode was AWESOME! I do have one problem, and don't read this if you don't want a major spoiler.
HE CANNOT BANG CUDDY! In truth, he can't even donate sperm BECAUSE I will throw myself out of the nearest moving plane. Cameron is where it's at....he should fall in love with Cameron (and some would say he's well on his way) but never hook up with ANYONE because it would totally ruin it for me. It appears jealousy is part of the celebrity crush as well. *sigh*
Some of the best Houseisms from last night:
When discussing Wilson's supposed date with Cuddy: "Doesn't make sense unless she ran out of batteries."
"I take mine black. The way I take my brain-damaged neurologists."
"Idiots are fun. No wonder every village wants one."
"Nearly dying changes everything forever...for about two months."
OH, and one more rant. I realize they made him hop on one leg when he tossed the cane and bolted for the baby, but let's at least make it REALISTIC. There was definitely not enough hopping.
Note: I'm neck-deep in shit...aka the paper for my class tomorrow night. Don't expect much out of me until then (unless it has to do with my Hugh Laurie crush). I'm really fucked this time. Note to self: don't put things off, don't read fanfic til 3am, don't have a really nice phone convo that gets you all wired up, don't pick a crappy topic that you know little about.
Edit: 3:47pm ...BREAKTHROUGH! Check this shit out. It doesn't make much sense out of context, but it's beautiful....
"Her text is not a scientifically realized catalogue of anthropological artifacts, but itself becomes an anthropological artifact. It is the culture she seeks to communicate."
I win! Now, how do I say that in 8 more pages?
Edit: 8:19pm...I'm almost dry...bled dry that is. I have 8 pages. I need at least 4 more. I have the info in me, I'm just RESTLESS! Maybe microwave popcorn will help.
Edit: 2:29am...As of 11pm I had 9 pages done. I still have 9 pages done because I've been letting it chill. For the last hour or so I've been trying to decide whether to down some Excedrin (much more pleasant than Red Bull) and finish this bitch off tonight or go on to bed and get up and finish tomorrow. I don't have to be in class until 4:30 so I've got time. I just hate not having it done...even though there's so little to do. Ugg. To bed I go. My head is fuzzed.
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
I miss you. I thought it would be easier by now.
Monday, May 08, 2006
Taken from an MSN conversation....
Andi says: i woke up next to a dead spider this morning
Andi says: and that freaks me out
a dead spider
jeff says: fuck that!
a DEAD SPIDER
jeff says: YICK
freak me the fuck out i tell you
it's actually a very ironic story
lay it on me
last night i was puttering around in the kitchen before bed...saw a spider...didn't feel like killing it
but i thought to myself
"I should kill it. Lest it bite mom or a dog and I'll feel bad."
so i killed it
and i fucking woke up next to a DEAD SPIDER
I thought to myself, "God, I did the right thing. Why would you put me next to another dead spider?"
but i guess it's better than a live spider
it wasnt God
it was Hitler
Watching: computer monitor
Thinking: I need a nap.
I've been decidedly angsty lately. If you're thinking I'm always angsty, I'll placate you by admitting it and saying that I'm angstier than usual and bugger off.
This part of the year is generally tough for me, and it seems it'll be a little tougher than usual this year. I defer details in this forum, but I will say it relates to some sunny memories from years gone by that I tend to reflect on over and over. Some of the best times. For the last few years I've been too pissed off to truly reflect with any sort of objective view, and it appears that the objective view this year is going to be a bitch. Cryptic enough? I thought so. In short, I hurt around this time of year. It's a very specific pain...something closely akin to mourning.
Speaking of pain...Elise and I had a conversation on our last cultural day/play date about those artforms that "hurt." I'm speaking specifically of lyrics that hurt, books or book passages that hurt, and personally I'm fond of films and television that hurts. When I say "hurt" I do mean that these particular works make me cry a great deal of the time. But sometimes they might just shock me, appaul me, make me giggle maniacally, or force me to lose some sleep. They're so finely attuned to our individual perceptions of humanity that they almost physically hurt to experience. They make us wonder how someone caught that little piece of us so accurately on paper, through music, through image.
I'm thinking specifically of music....
Some of the painful songs I'm relishing right now:
"Some Devil"...Dave Matthews
"It Doesn't Matter"...Allison Krauss and Union Station
"Untouchable Face"...Ani DiFranco
"Kill the Messenger"...Shawn Colvin
"Paint it Black"...Rolling Stones
As I run across more "stuff that hurts" I plan to chronicle it here. Expect book exerpts soon.
Too many words
Too many lies
I can't quite tell the truth
When I look into your eyes
I feel I could
And I know I should
Let my feet hit the ground
You don't need a broken heart
To know a heart can be broken
Saturday, May 06, 2006
The Watertower paper is 99.8% done. I haven't done this much intellectual bleeding in ages. Ironic indeed that the most difficult paper I've written in graduate school is for a class on picture books--one of those subjects that most people wouldn't piss on if it was on fire. I see this horrible paper as a dry-hump...err, run...for my thesis. Why you ask? Because it's an asswhip, and against my better judgement I'm bringing together VERY disparate threads of meaning into one cohesive reading. It makes me wanna die. But I think it might just be damn good after I'm done rolling around in it.
Last week I was getting out of my sexy car to go into the Hall of Languages when one of my profs caught up with me. She's on my thesis committee (which I forgot to mention here last week...I have a thesis committee now. Three good profs...everyone I wanted) and was wondering if I'd like to be her assistant in the Fall. I said absolutely yes. If it works out (not a done deal yet) I'll be teaching her Children's Lit section part of the time and doing grunt work part of the time. The only down side of this: Fall is gonna be a beating. Here's the way it's shaping up:
9 hours of coursework:
Problems in Adolescent Lit
Multi-Ethnic Graphic Narrative (independent study under another committee member)
Throwing a conference
Teaching one section of English 101...freshman composition
Being assistant to Dr. R if it goes through (not approved yet)
Other stuff I do outside of school (zine, social life, writing my own shit, watching House)
"Bricks" otherwise known as library committee stuff
In other news, I received my luscious goods from Amazon yesterday. I ordered the PostSecret book, Dave Matthews' solo album, Some Devil, and Siri Hustvedt's book of essays, A Plea for Eros. I love getting good stuff in the mail. Good stuff generally means anything other than a Capital One credit card offer (bastards) or loan consolidation materials (bigger bastards).
When the mail arrived I was sitting in the sunroom reading The Gun Seller and drinking green tea. I quickly unwrapped my goodies and hauled ass back out to the sunroom with the PostSecret book and read that bitch cover to cover in an hour. Given, it's not a lot of text, but I still surprised myself by eating it up so fast.
My mom and I ventured out to "Foxfest" today. My hometown has this little festival every year. There's a parade, vendor booths, food, dunking booth, food, kids and rednecks, pets, food, a blood drive, food. If you've ever seen Funny Farm, it's sort of like that town festival where Chevy Chase ends up in the fishing tournament, knocks a guy out, and ends up swimming to shore where he finds out he owes $4,000 on a funeral for a guy who was buried in his garden. Quirky...that's the word I'm looking for.
In just a few short hours I saw a sleeping hedgehog wearing a bow, a goat in a bikini, more catfish than is usually observed on land, several family members, a woman who wants me to marry her son (and I don't want to marry her son), and a friend from undergrad whom I haven't talked to in ages. She and I will be doing sushi soon and catching up. Overall it was a good time. Just bizarre. But that's to be expected in small town Texas.
Now I'm off to shower and read fun stuff. I refuse to start another paper until tomorrow.
Reading: The Gun Seller
Thinking: That my nose itches.
Thursday, May 04, 2006
*writing like a maniac*
The International Comic Arts Festival peeps finally got back to me. I didn't make it in, but I feel slightly less like a loser since my paper was one of the ones that the judges went into two rounds of tie-break to decide on (thus the 3-day delay in finding out the results). They apparently received 66 entries for 18 slots.
Time to look for two new conferences for next year.
Wednesday, May 03, 2006
Ok, it's later:
It wasn't a sex dream or anything. I met him here in the States and we started seeing each other. His personality was very un-Hugh and very House. Snarky bastard and all...but fun. And very cute.
Anyway, I was with friends, Hugh and I had been seeing each other for a bit, and it was his birthday. He and me and the two friends went to a swanky restaurant where I surprised him with food I felt was very English (although I can't think just now what that might've been. I think there was a brownie sundae involved, but I was more concerned with the aphrodesiac qualities of the chocolate). I got him gifts! I thought, in the DREAM mind you...I'm not this idiotic in real life...that it would be very English and remind him of home to buy him a miniature claw-foot bathtub for his birthday. I did. He loved it. I would've gotten some action as a result of that gift if I hadn't woken up.
SO CLOSE! Gah!
Listening: fabulous mix cd..."Sweet Home Alabama" at the mo'
Tuesday, May 02, 2006
And fuck the International Comic Arts Festival for not getting their notices out on time. Thanks a lot, assholes.
Other ways people are annoying me today:
Sitting at the table where we usually sit
That pretty much sums it up.
Monday, May 01, 2006
I stayed in bed in the dark thinking about the future for about as long as I could take it. Sarah McLachlan was making me weepy, so I switched over to a mystery mix and wound up with Nickel Creek and Alanis unplugged. Better.
I've been making a mental list of all the stuff I feel a pressing need to do before I die.
Humanitarian work in a Third World country.
Backpack through Europe.
Finally get my tatoo. I've decided, after seven years of contemplation, on a phoenix between my shoulder blades and the text, "Quaere Verum"...Seek the Truth in Latin.
The cross-country Kerouac road trip.
Tour Frida Kahlo's house in Mexico.
Publish.Maybe a law degree after my PhD. I've always thought I'd be good at it.
Marry and do the kid thing. I'll be fine if it doesn't happen, but ultimately I think I want it.
Sleep. I just WANT TO SLEEP.
I was talking to mom about the 'zine tonight. She seemed sort of put off by the whole conversation so I asked what the problem was. She said she thought it was an unecessary "extra" that I put on myself when I've already got enough to do.
I see her perspective...I do. But can't she also understand that this is something I NEED to do for the sake of my own sanity? I love being too busy, otherwise I wouldn't be so busy. Busy is a choice. I bitch, yes, it's hard, yes, but I need the busy. I'm miserable when I'm not busy. I like breakneck for a while and then a break. Then breakneck. Then a break. It's a cycle. It makes me feel alive. I'm due for a break, but I guarantee after a week or two off I'll be ready to gnaw my own leg off.
Sometimes I wish we were more alike. At the core of things we're exactly alike...just different interests and perspectives on certain things. She's still my best friend. If we were any more alike we'd probably kill each other.Listening: acoustic version of "Caught in the Rain"...Revis
P.S. I should find out tomorrow if I got accepted to the International Comic Arts Festival in D.C. I have my doubts, but cross your digits anyway.