I've spent the morning dwelling on the story of the Alabama sports fan so insanely upset at the team from Auburn that he went to the Auburn campus and poisoned their beloved 130-year old oak trees.

Partly, yes, because it was a totally insane thing to do.

Partly, yes, because it turns out this idiot is a retired Texas state trooper.

But partly...no, largely, because this man, Harvey Almorn Updyke, is apparently such a rabid Alabama fan that he actually named one of his children Crimson Tyde Updyke.

Crimson Tyde Updyke.

I...I just....wow.
So it was checkup time last Friday, and I discovered that the health clinic where I go has begun using something called MyChart, that lets me do things like get my lab results myself.

Which, as it turns out, is oddly stressful. I log in to where all the tests are named, one by one, and I have to click on each one, one at a time, and see what the result of each individual test is. (Followed by some quick googling to understand what I just read.) No clue as to whether the test is good news or bad news, no smiley face or little thumbs up/thumbs down icon, so each time I click the link to a new test I find myself holding my breath like I'm at a blackjack table watching the dealer flip the last card over.

It's not fair for me to say that I miss the old days--I'm a bit phone-phobic, and that skyrocketed each time it was the hospital or my doctor calling me. Like, "Oops, I dropped the phone in the river. AGAIN." I guess how I'd like to get my medical results is through some sort of immediate and clear sign. Like a delivery of flowers, or a puppy holding a card that says "Your health is PAWsome!" And if there's some bad news, pretty much the same delivery method, but the news can be like the prize inside a cereal box, only bad. And by "cereal box" I mean bottle of rum. It can say something like "Now that you've drunk this far, let's talk about your colon..."

(Oh, for the record, all the tests came back fine. Even the ones about my cholesterol intake, which were a bit of a surprise. )
So I'm taking an Anthro class! And it's very cool. And my teacher is feisty and hates cellphones and has sworn to a)confiscate for the first offense and b) ANSWER them and humiliate the student for any further offenses. No problem, right? Simple policy, what could go wrong, right?

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

Excuse me while I go build a time machine.

To myself 5:58pm:

1) Remind D that the class goes to 9:30, not 9

2) Skip the middle 20 pages of the reading assignment, it'll never come up


....I've never had a teacher yell "Nooo! You're going to hell for ruining my story!" at me before.


May. 23rd, 2011 10:44 am
Dear Workplace,

There are slogans for morale-boosting events, and then there's "MANDATORY FUN". Call me a stick in the mud but I really, really, really don't think that those two words go together.
[livejournal.com profile] triplemare asked her readers who grew up in the 80s for outdoor games they played when they were kids, and my comment turned into enough of a trip down memory lane that I thought I should re-post it here:

My sister and I lived in RURAL rural Maine* on property that had two little apple trees that produced sour green apples about the size of a plum...pretty useless as fruit, but as projectiles they were brilliant. We'd play 'chase tag' where a thrown apple counted as being tagged.

*So rural that another game we played was imitating Radar on M*A*S*H by seeing which of us could hear a car coming down our road first. Whoever did would yell "CAR!!!", which was our cue to run behind the house as it it was a monster coming, and hide until it went past and there was no danger of it seeing us. You got bonus cred for how far away you could distinguish the sound and know whether it was a logging truck, a dump truck** or a car.

**There were a lot*** of dump trucks on our road because the biggest industry in our town was the gravel plant.**** Yes. Our local industry was making gravel. We used to love playing in the gravel pits, some of which would collect rainwater in the spring and become homes to hundreds of tadpoles, others of which would stay dry and look like the sort of desolate craters where you'd expect to see Captain Kirk fighting a lizard man.


****Once the sawdust plant closed down, anyhow.
Dear Boston Globe,

When you begin an article with the line "Using a computer-controlled cadaver to simulate a pitcher on the mound, Boston researchers are..." do not expect me to read any more, because I am FREAKING OUT. WhatWHAT now??

The whole article is here: http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/health/articles/2011/04/12/researchers_tag_likely_culprit_as_cause_of_shoulder_injuries/ . At no point are the phrases "undead cyborg", "using technology last seen in Marvel Comics's 'Deathlok'", or "they called them mad, MAAAD!" used, sadly.
True story, folks, while I was watching the DVD extras of Moulin Rouge with a high fever on Friday night (AS ONE DOES), the choreographer was being interviewed and he said one of the most awesome things I've ever heard in my life.

He said that when he was creating the Can Can sequence, he didn't want it to seem 'nice' and 'pretty'. He went for treating the dancers like two rival gangs, who'd rush at each other and have a dance-off.

Yes. This man, this unsung genius, created the Can Can Battle.

There's a parallel world out there where the dancers in the movie took this too much to heart and started *really* trying to settle disputes by can canning each other in the alleys behind the studio. And this spread and spread, so now there are unemployed dancers can can dueling (cee-squaring, they call it) each other all over Los Angeles and New York. And I want to go to there.

1. Teacher lists on the board Socrates's reasons for staying in Athens. We go through them in order.

2. We hit Soc's explanation that the city laws are like parents and therefore we have to obey them unquestioningly no matter how wrong they might be, just like we do our parents.

3. Brief pause as the class takes to this concept like fish take to maple syrup.

4. Explanation from teacher that this is something philosophers like to point to as a Flawed Argument. Sometimes they use a technical term, "full of crap".

5. Sigh of relief from the class.

6. Vanessa raises her hand and begins talking.

7. I draw a horse in my notebook.

8. I tune back in. Vanessa's complaining about the government saying it's illegal to smoke in her own car.

9. I draw a beard and top hat on my horse.

10. And now Michelle Obama's telling Vanessa her children need to eat healthy food, and...

11. I write 'Neighbraham Lincoln' underneath the picture of my horse.

12. So, Vanessa concludes, what about when the laws are attacking parents?

13. Class ends.
I don't know if Chinese New Year is my favorite holiday, but any holiday that causes my wife to call me from the grocery store to say she was having trouble finding the ingredient I wanted because explosions were going off and a dragon was chasing her and she'd had to "hide behind the chicken" is pretty darn awesome.
Here are some pictures of what life's like in my neighborhood this week:

Here's something I never really realized before this winter, and the
four snowfalls we've had in a little over a month: winter can be hell on
some people with OCD.

The reason I've discovered this is that as far as I can tell, my
next door neighbor has it.

Or maybe he just really, really, REALLY hates snow.

All I know is that
he's out with his shovel before the snow stops falling. And this is FINE.

And he's
out there five or six more times over the next couple of days, because he doesn't just
want his sidewalk shoveled, he wants it BARE, he wants it BEREFT OF SNOW and you know, if that's his thing it's FINE, it's FINE.


grind his shovel blade against the 99% bare street four or five times until he's built up enough snow to fill his shovel, and then he'll walk it twenty feet to the big mound of snow he's made on the corner so there'll be two or three minutes of blessed peace, almost long enough that I start to relax and then
Hey locals, do any of you know anything about an online comic book retailer based out of Arlington named Heavy Ink? Or a guy named Travis Corcoran, the company president?

Here's the reason I ask:


Laura Hudson puts it better than I could, but I just have to wonder at the mind who thought that posting this was a good idea. Did he just wake up and decide it was time to stop slacking and really push hard for his lifelong goal of being the internet's #1 douchebag? If THAT'S the case then well played, sir. Well played.
1) For something to do over the holiday break, I took out Season One of 'Gilmour Girls' from the library. I watched an episode yesterday. I also read two stories from Stephen King's newest book.

Can you guess which one gave me nightmares? Go on, guess.

I don't know what it is. Well, I might--Deb has a thing about social anxiety, and while she'll watch part of an episode with me there are times where she'll flee the room like a terrier running from a thunderstorm, and it's rubbed off a bit. And the episode I watched yesterday was particularly bad that way, with a couple breaking up messily and another main character having a high school scandal blow up around her will probably get someone else (the one who was just broken up with) fired for misconduct...even I fled the room at that point. And last night my dreams took over where the show left off, only with highwaymen robbing people in parking lots with club-sized candy canes as a side bonus.

2) We've also been watching 'Hoarders'. Which is scary in a totally different way--I can't get through an episode without looking around the room desperately figuring out what I'm going to get rid of first, because it's suddenly obvious things need to go. NOW. EVERYTHING.

So, related to this I now have three shopping bags full of comic books that wound up in the 'donate' stack after I did my sorting and organizing. I'd really like to donate them--they're not BAD or I wouldn't have bought them, just not good enough to keep--but I'm not sure where to start. Comics geeks on my f'list, do any of you have any experience with this? Librarians and teachers, do you have any ideas?
[livejournal.com profile] telepresence spread Christmas cheer by posting this:

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I wrote a 50-page story that involved a Mary Sue version of this person encountering all her favorite fictional characters.

It bombed. It bombed SO badly.
When the aliens come and demand to know why we should be spared, I think I'm going to show them this:

The dumb

Oct. 25th, 2010 01:54 pm
Dear Myself,

Remember how important Reading Comprehension was on the SATs? It's still important. When an event poster says "Get your pictures taken with New England Aquarium’s costumed characters: their new African penguin and a shark", you have no right to be disappointed when you get there and there aren't any real penguins posing for photos.

Costumed characters, nimwit. Like this:

What, did you think that phrase meant it would be a penguin dressed like another bird? Or maybe like Penguiana Jones with a little leather jacket and fedora and...ohmigod, you've just stopped listening because you're too busy writing another entry in your "What I'm Going to Set Loose in my Neighborhood When I Win the Lottery" list, aren't you?



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