February 2005 archive

(54 entries)

February 28, 2005

Flushing: Home of giant goldfish. Or something.

After work, I came home and collapsed. The snow had started and I didn't feel like doing anything. Well, I felt like shopping (I almost always feel like shopping these days) but I couldn't get ahold of Mr B******. So Rachel and I lazed around until MaTT got back and then the three of us lazed around until it was time to eat dinner. We picked a likely candidate out of the AAA guide and set off through the blinding snow. Well, maybe not blinding but it blew around a lot.

The place we'd found turned out to be more expensive than advertised so we wandered around some more looking for alternatives. We found a little café/diner near Carnegie Hall that looked like it had been decorated by somebody's grandma. We proceeded to order the Meal Involving The Most Dishes Ever. I had turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, mixed vegetables and tea, all of which were served on their own plates.

My vegetable choice had been "Peas, broccoli or mixed." This threw me off for a while because peas and broccoli are my favorite vegetables. Was "mixed" a mixture of peas and broccoli? That would be strange but good! Then I wouldn't have to choose between them! I ordered the "mixed," which (predictably, if your brain works) turned out to be that standard mix with cauliflower, zucchini, beans, ridgey carrot pieces and a few sad pieces of broccoli. Sigh. Well, I had plenty of other stuff to eat.

Rachel wasn't keeping the Two Slowest Eaters On Earth in line very well, so we didn't get back until after 10pm. We lazed around and chatted with Mr B******, then dragged ourselves off to bed again.

srah | 11:59 PM | TrackBack
Tags: alternative spring break, alternative spring break 2005, new york city

Where the underlings can eat with elite

All of the Alternative Spring Break reports I've read about *Unidentified International Organization* talk endlessly about the cafeteria. I had built up an image in my mind of a huge room with 100-foot ceilings and marble everywhere, where hairnetted lunch-ladies surlily glop filet mignon and lobster onto your plate. The huge ceilings are, instead, in the part of the library where I'm working. But the cafeteria is pretty spectacular too. I haven't had my tour, but it's my favorite thing about *Unidentified International Organization* so far.

The cafeteria looks out over the river and the view is just as spectacular inside. It's a great place to people-watch; my favorite things to watch for are dress and beverage. Who's wearing traditional native dress, who's wearing contemporary Western dress, who's wearing a combination of both or has their own unusual style? Who's drinking Coke or Pepsi? Who's drinking orange juice, tea, coffee or bottled water? Where are these people from? What languages do they use to communicate with each other?

I could sit in the cafeteria all day, but unfortunately I have to work, too. The project is pretty interesting, but I'm afraid I don't know what I'm doing. I felt the same way last year, though, and they seemed pretty pleased with my results. So perhaps I'll pull it off again!

The snow has begun. The prediction is 6-10 inches. We are not amused. How is one expected to buy cheap knockoff purses in Chinatown in the driving snow? I mean, really! Work with me here, New York!

srah | 3:24 PM | TrackBack
Tags: alternative spring break, alternative spring break 2005, new york city, united nations

February 27, 2005

I'm just mad about saffron...

Good morning. I woke up at 7am today, thinking it was almost noon. Being on the other end of this time zone confuses me. I have no ability to guess the time anymore. The truth discovered, I went back to sleep.

My roommates had already left by the time I got dressed, so I went for a wander in Central Park alone. I later discovered that most SI people had had the same plan, although I didn't run into any of them at the time. The Gates Project was still up, so I wandered through and people-watched. I think the coolest thing about the Gates Project was that it got people out walking around. I don't know how bustling Central Park usually is, but it was certainly bustly today. The best thing I saw was the two ladies dressed all in black with saffron scarves that matched the gates. They made me smile all through the park. I also enjoyed seeing all of the sweater-clad dogs. I think that New York's favorite form of one-upmanship may be "My dog has more clothing on than yours." I've seen dogs in socks, too. Now we need some with hats, or possibly little doggie ties.

I liked wandering around on my own. There's something lonely about solitary walks, but they also give one time for reflection and I enjoy them for that. I hate eating alone, though, so it's good that I got a phone call around lunchtime to meet people.

Mr B******, MaTT, Rachel and I went to this Chinese place we'd seen the night before. We passed Nnnick on the way, then realized we were walking in the wrong direction and passed him again going the other way. We thought about turning around again just to make him think he was going crazy.

I had a roast duck salad. It was very tasty and the plum sauce dressing was lovely. After lunch we went to the Museum of Modern Art. I got to see a few Magrittes and there was an interesting section on Design that had everything from Legos to teapots to iPods to rocking chaises to Hecate's ancestor, the Canon S110. She took a picture.

We set off looking for an H&M that Nick had mentioned, so as not to be one-upped by Amanda and our other friends on ASB in Washington, DC. We will find the damned H&M, if it takes us all week! So... needless to say, we didn't find it on this trip. We later found out we'd been given bad directions.

Instead we walked up Broadway, back to our accomodations. We lazed around for a while, debating what to do for dinner. We finally picked something and lazed around some more, in the hopes that someone would call us back and be interested in associating with us. Unfortunately we suck, so we only got a nibble as we were walking to the restaurant. We got a table, waited for Nnnick and had some lovely Italian at a place called Julian's. We talked an awful lot about Willie Nelson. For future reference, if I had a choice between having a magician with a rabbit in his hat, a balloon-animal-making clown or Willie Nelson at my birthday party, I pick Willie Nelson. So get a move on arranging that already.

We also had two bottles of wine among the five of us, followed by a trip to a (possibly-gay or at least man-heavy) bar called 'Disiac, which had Lindeman's Framboise. Hurray for you, bar! Nnnick and Mr B****** and I sang along with the music, the boys tried to set things on fire with the candle on the table because boys are dumb and we returned home in time to watch cartoons and stumble off to bed before our first day of work.

srah | 11:59 PM | TrackBack
Tags: alternative spring break, alternative spring break 2005, central park, new york city, the gates project

February 26, 2005

The Bronx is up and Matt's battery's down

Stupid things I did today:

  1. Try to drive us to Chicago instead of to New York City. I was so concerned with where we should store the Ohio Turnpike toll ticket that I didn't pay attention to the ramp I chose and we started heading west. We didn't lose that much time, but it did seem to take forever before we got to a point where we could turn around.

  2. Go to Hoboken, NJ. Well, okay, this wasn't really my decision, but it was stupid and I did it.

  3. Step on the passenger-side invisible-brake so hard and for so long that my leg froze into a permanently tense position and wobbled pathetically when it was actually my turn to drive.

  4. Let that one guy go in front of me in the mass of people merging into the Lincoln Tunnel. You let one in and they all think they have the right! No more Michigan Nice Guy!

  5. Turn the wrong way onto a one-way street in New York City. Omigod, who let me drive in New York City? 'Why is that car flashing its lights at me?' I wondered, 'For that matter, why is that car all the way over in the same lane as us? Oh god, this is a one-way street, isn't it????' We were able to turn off before we actually met the oncoming traffic, thank heavens.

  6. Almost kill everyone in my car. Um... I couldn't find the traffic light. I didn't think we had one. It seemed like a stupid idea to have to peek out into the intersection and zoom across. It turns out it was a stupid idea. I was supposed to wait for the light to turn green. But I didn't see any light, so I PULLED OUT INTO ONCOMING TRAFFIC! Everyone is still alive and, more importantly, the U-M vehicle we are traveling in is just fine.

After that, I burst into hysterical dry-sobbing for a little while, parked the car and nearly fell asleep in my blueberry blintzes. Welcome to New York.

srah | 11:59 PM | TrackBack
Tags: alternative spring break, alternative spring break 2005, driving, new york city

'Tomorrow: A penthouse that's way up high; Tonight: The Y'

Dear The Internet,

I am off to New York City for the next week. Please hold everything until I get back.

I am off for a 9.5-hour drive in the driving snow in this. Oops, I mean this. Not sure if I'll have an opportunity to blog from work or not, so don't be frightened* if you don't hear from me! I've got a little list notebook and my blogthoughts shall be duly jotted until such a time as I can jot them properly on the Internets.

* Except Andy, because he should always be frightened.

srah | 6:39 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack
Tags: alternative spring break, alternative spring break 2005

February 25, 2005


Of course I'm cleaning my room. Everybody my age cleans their room. It's the coolest! You ain't cool unless you clean your room. If cleaning your room makes you cool, consider me Miles Davis!

Hmmm. No, seriously, cleaning your room is cool. I just found fi' dolla'. And then sat down to blog about it and did a lot of research into misquoting Billy Madison and completely killed my cleaning frenzy. WAY TO GO, SRAH.

srah | 8:36 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

'No, they don't suck your blood...'

This Flash animation is making me happy today.

[via B3TA newsletter #171]

srah | 7:58 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags: discovered

Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes are overrated, really

Michele has a blog that consists almost entirely of questions, to be answered in her comments box. Around here, I do the talking and you shut up and listen!

Well, okay, no. I like it when you participate too. So I am TOTALLY JUST RIPPING OFF one of her comment games.

This reminds me of a comment-war (not much of a war, really, which is the best kind of war) between Smuj and myself a few months ago: Tell me something that brings you pleasure. The first person to respond should come up with something that begins with A, then the next person does something that starts with B and so on. You can play over and over again if you like. What makes you happy, baby?

Ready... set... go.

srah | 5:36 PM | Comments (11) | TrackBack
Tags: discovered

February 24, 2005

As Oprah does, so does the world

I learned today that Oprah Winfrey got her ears pierced for the first time this week, at age 51. I've always been conflicted about ear piercing, myself.


  • I think earrings look nice and I think I would look nice with earrings.

  • Robin always tells me that I should get my ears pierced because I can't wear most other jewelry. And that way I can get hypothetical future boyfriends to buy me jewelry. Ahem.


  • I kind of enjoy being the only mutant freaktard who doesn't have pierced ears. I bask in attention. :-\

  • I'm afraid of infection! I'm not sure I'm responsible enough to take care of my own ears. That sentence I just wrote cracks me up.

  • I had a dream in middle school where I was wearing hoop earrings and this kid ripped them out of my ear and ripped half of my ear off. It's scarred me for life.

  • As an acknowledged ear fetishist, how can I profane my perfect virgin ears in such a way? Whose earlobes will I fondle once I've ruined mine?

Sigh. The Cons, it would seem, are still outweighing the Pros. These ears won't be pierced today.

srah | 4:54 PM
Tags: ears, oprah winfrey

I'm terrible at the guessing

"Currently, the main attraction is a parlor game in which users try to guess the ages of other users based on a photograph."

I'm in there, somewhere, looking all of 16 years old: ageproject

[via Glovebox Sandwiches]

srah | 1:46 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack
Tags: discovered

February 23, 2005

Um... at least it was... relaxing?

I am a mature, grad-student-type person and, as such, always make excellent use of my time. Take today's schedule for example.

10:00 am - Wake up.
10:00 am - 1:15 pm - Tool around the house in pyjamas and do nothing productive.
1:15 pm - 2:00 pm - Get showered/dressed/etc.
2:00 pm - 6:30 pm - Run errands, do shopping, tool around town. Have three specific buying goals for today; only actually buy one thing. And some bubble tea.
6:30 pm - 7:45 pm - Dinner. Vietnamese food. It was very nice.
7:45 pm - 8:15 pm - Get lost on the way from Ypsilanti to tbone's place. Luckily my inner compass landed me somewhere in Ann Arbor... it just probably wasn't the best route.
8:15 pm - 10:30 pm - Chillin' at tbone's crib with tbone, her sister-in-law and their doggz. Watch Lost, American Idol and Alias all at the same time. Thank you, Tivo. I guess.
10:30 pm - present - Tool around on the Internet. Accept Alexis' Friendster friendvitation and spend an hour dinking around Friendster. Write this post.

(Whilst dinking around Friendster, I discovered a trove of Albion alums that it had never occurred to me to look for. I have no idea who most of these people are, including people who graduated in 2002. This is sad. Their faces do not even look familiar. Did I ever leave my dorm room? Probably not.)

So... all in all, a very unproductive day. I did not start the paper that's due Friday. I did not look Mr B******'s rough draft over for him. I still have to go out shopping again tomorrow because today's trips were unfruitful. Nothing has been accomplished!

srah | 11:48 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

February 22, 2005

Forget this 'job hunting' thing!

Via Noor comes the information that famous blog-type-person Jason Kottke is quitting his job to blog full-time. He says:

"I'm attempting to revisit the idea of arts patronage in the context of the internet. Patrons of the arts have typically been wealthy individuals, well-heeled foundations, or corporations. As we've seen in many contexts, the net allows individuals from geographically dispersed locations to aggregate themselves for any number of reasons. So, when you've got a group of people who are interested in a particular artist, writer, etc., they should be able to mobilize over the internet and support that person directly instead of waiting around for the MacArthur Foundation or Cosimo de Medici to do it."

Reviving arts patronage? This is crazy-talk! What good will come of that? Patrons will just dangle money in front of you, telling you what to blog. Did Leonardo da Vinci get paid to paint the Mona Lisa? Was Michelangelo commissioned to do the Sistine Chapel?

... Oh. Good point.

Anybody want to pay me to blog?

srah | 4:28 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Face to beak with nature

I gave Mr B****** a ride home yesterday and had to slow down for ducks. His neighborhood was full of them! It was great, because I like ducks. They are cute and delicious. But there were, like, 30 ducks just wandering around the subdivision. What were they doing there? Why weren't they hibernating or flying south or whatever ducks do in the winter? Does this mean that winter is over? Or were they just having a party? Or are ducks TAKING OVER THE EARTH?

What's going on here????

srah | 8:56 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack
Tags: weather

February 21, 2005

I found the secret to life...

I've been waking up to* this for about a week now. Thanks, Frank! It's a great song to wake up to.

* This song is, like, track #10 on the CD. It takes me almost the whole CD to register that there is music playing and that I should start the waking-up process.

srah | 8:52 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags: music

Bullying you into trying new (old?) things

Go download this.

No, I can't think of a post to write around it. It's the Beatles' Revolver album remixed with other stuff. It's good. Download it already. Go!

[via sp3ccylad]

srah | 2:36 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack
Tags: music

Go to hell, iTunes party shuffle!

Are there any words that drive you insane for no rational reason?

I've got a few; I can't listen to the song "Lightning Crashes" by Live because it has the word "placenta" in it. I can't believe I've defiled my blog by writing that. I know it's natural and I'm too uptight and it's the body so it's beautiful and we should embrace it and all be hippies like that, but ew. I hate that word! Don't say that in a song.

srah | 2:22 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack
Tags: music

February 20, 2005

Unconscious Mutterings

Vonce again eet eez time for ze unconscious mutterings. Vonce again vee shall delve deep into ze subconscious of ze srah for ze free azzociations.

srah | 1:55 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack
Tags: memes, unconscious mutterings

February 18, 2005

I take comfort in the thought that ASB will prosper even as HCI has fallen...

Despite all our efforts to defend the ideals of Userhood against the infidels, I'm afraid the time has come to admit that we've lost. I will have to be noble and valiant even in the face of defeat and go lay my sword* down at Jeremiah's feet. We fought a good fight, my HCI comrades, and you should be proud of yourselves.

Now we will just have to get used to life under our cruel archiving oppressors and try to adjust to their strange, foreign culture by donning their garb (ugly plaid flannel shirts) and adopting their customs (using acid-free everything, shrieking at the sight of staples and paperclips, drinking tea).

Update (6:20pm): WTF??? We came in fourth? We beat the archivists? I wrote this pre-emptive post for nothing? Well, I'd try to get used to the customs of the Tailored students, but who the hell knows what they do, anyway?

Congratulations, ASB, on your amazing fundraising. Apparently the seething resentment (or feigned seething resentment) between the specializations is worth $1,024.38!

* I don't actually have a sword. Maybe I will lay down a wrapping paper tube - we used to use those as swords.

srah | 4:40 PM | Comments (19) | TrackBack
Tags: school of information

Penny War: Friday's contribution

Penny War: Friday's contribution - originally uploaded by srah.

This is what $37.60 in pennies looks like when it's at home.

My home.

In case you wondered, $37.60 in pennies is really damn heavy. I am getting a ride to school.

srah | 3:29 PM | TrackBack
Tags: penny war, photos, school of information, university of michigan

This is my state of mind today

I am the best!

My hair is really soft.

I rule!

srah | 2:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags: srah

February 17, 2005

Oh happy day...

Two things today made me grin widely and laugh to myself when they happened... and continue to make me grin and giggle when I think of them.

The first is that Cheryl, having read my blog (I hope!), called to sing to me the coroner's section of "Ding Dong, The Witch Is Dead," but couldn't get past the word "coroner" without bursting out in giggles to the point where she couldn't talk, much less sing.

The other is a secret until tomorrow...

srah | 5:30 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

La question que tout le monde se pose...*

So often people ask me, "Sarah, what song do you have in your head? Do you think you could share it with your readers?" For once I think I'll take pity on you clamouring masses. It is "Ding Dong The Wicked Witch Is Dead" from the Wizard of Oz. Unfortunately, it's not even the entire song, but just the warbly part that goes,

As coroner, I'll vouch for her.
I've thoroughly examined her.
And she's not only meeeeerely dead,
She's really most sinceeeeerely dead.

In related news, did anyone else think that 17-year-old American Idol reject with the cornrows and the extremely (over-)supportive mother could have a career as a celebrity endorser? I can see her representing the Lollipop Guild.

* The question that everyone asks themselves... (reference to a comedy sketch on French TV)

srah | 10:37 AM | TrackBack
Tags: music, the wizard of oz

February 16, 2005

Phirst phoray into photography

Argyle - Originally uploaded by srah.

As promised, my first picture taken with Hecate is of... my feet. Argyle = HOTT?

srah | 5:30 PM | TrackBack
Tags: hecate, photos

Wherefore stopp'st thou at this here traffic light?

I was driving behind a Mercury Mariner today with the personalized license plate: ANCIENT.

The only thing that would have made it better is if it were covered in frost.

srah | 3:29 PM | TrackBack
Tags: poetry

Reference few will understand:

This post and Doctor Orpheus and the pain in my toe keep making me think,

'I'm sorry, but this toe will have to be AMPUTATED FROM THE MATERIAL SPHERE!!!!!!'

srah | 2:57 PM | TrackBack
Tags: tv, venture brothers


I was standing in line at Subway yesterday and when I turned to leave, there was an excruciating pain in my left big toe. All I can think is that I've sprained it or pulled a muscle or that I have some kind of Toe Carpal Tunnel Syndrome from using my toes to push in the clutch while driving. It only hurts when I flex it or when I shift my weight while turning. You might not notice until something like this happens, but you use your toes a lot when you turn!

I IMed Alfie and she said she'd have to examine it to be able to guess anything. I harassed my friend's boyfriend, who is a DOC-TOR!!!!!* but he said I'd have to show him and it hardly seemed appropriate at a social gathering.

The one person I didn't think to ask was my doctor when I went for a physical yesterday. Because... I was sitting down. So I didn't think about my toe.

This is dumb!

* I am thinking this word in the voice of Doctor Orpheus from Venture Bros. for some reason.

srah | 9:59 AM | TrackBack
Tags: health, toes

February 15, 2005

'Y yo, aprendí el espagnol en France con estudiantes francéses que no pueden prononcer les 'r's.'*

There is an international internship program conducting interviews at my office this week. Most of the interviews are carried out in the language of the internship and I sat in on one, so now the director of the program keeps chattering away at me in French whenever he sees me.

I've been thinking in French and speaking French to myself today. French is like a drug and I'm hooked on it again. I love language because you can use it from day one. There is nothing useless in language** so there's nothing for me to get bored with. There's nothing pointless in it to someone like me, who can imagine situations where I would use any vocabulary I learn. Someday all the words for the equipment used to make glasses will come in handy!

Now there are students conversing in Spanish in the office. They're college-level Spanish speakers talking about classrooms, so it's a speed and a vocabulary I can handle. The Spanish has entered my brain and is roiling around with the French. Very little English is to be found on that top level of consciousness.

Don't expect to communicate with me today; there's nothing that can be done to save my poor feeble brain.

* Translation: And I, I studied Spanish in France with students who couldn't pronounce the 'r's.
** Except maybe the passé simple. What the hell use is that? Je ne vis pas d'application! Pourquoi eus-je besoin de ce temps?

srah | 9:19 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack
Tags: language

The weather report

February showers bring...

srah | 9:08 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack
Tags: weather

February 14, 2005

The Music In My Kitchen

What does my kitchen have to do with anything???

Well anyway, this is a music meme that's been going around and Jamie tagged me, so I picked and chose some questions from various versions of the meme. Here goes:

1. Total amount of music files on your computer:
2718 files, which translates to more than 7 days of music. What the hell am I going to do with 7 days of music???

2. The last CD you bought was:
I made my mom buy the Return of the Jedi soundtrack.

3. What was the last song you listened to before reading this message?
Um... "Love Shack" by the B-52s. Ugh. I hate to admit that. But it was on the radio and I was pulling into the driveway, so I didn't really have time to change the station.

4. The first 5 best lyrics that come into your head

  • "Heavy hearted/ Till you call my name/ And it sounds like church bells/ Or the whistle of a train/ On a summer evening/ I'll run to meet you/ Barefoot, barely breathing" (Sophie B. Hawkins, "As I Lay Me Down")

  • "Nothing’s so cold/ As closing the heart when all we need/ Is to free the soul/ But we wouldn’t be that brave I know/ And the air outside's so soft, confessing everything" (Toad the Wet Sprocket, "All I Want" - I love the alliteration in the last line)

  • "Sometimes, all I need is the air that I breathe/ And to love you" (The Hollies, "The Air That I Breathe")

  • "And as I watch the drops of rain/ Weave their weary paths and die/ I know that I am like the rain/ There but for the grace of you go I" (Simon & Garfunkel, "Kathy's Song")

  • "And I guess that's why/ They call it the blues/ Time on my hands/ Could be time spent with you/ Laughing like children/ Living like lovers/ Rolling like thunder under the covers" (Elton John, "Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues")

5. Who are you going to pass this stick to (three persons) and why?
Katie, Mr B****** and Noor. BECAUSE.

srah | 5:10 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack
Tags: music

Typing test

I had to take a Meyer-Briggs-style cognition test earlier this semester for my Human Behavior class*. It told me that I was an ISTJ (Introverted Sensing Thinking Judging) when for years I've been an INTJ (Introverted iNtuitive Thinking Judging) personality. I've always been on the fence between the Thinking/Feeling aspect, but the change from iNtuitive to Sensing took me by surprise.

I took another version of the test yesterday and my result was ISFJ (Introverted Sensing Feeling Judging). So apparently it wasn't just the test - I have actually gone from being someone who trusts their intuition to someone who relies on what they can sense. It's very strange to me that I would change in this way, when I feel like I've gotten more emotional. Maybe I'm more emotional but don't trust those emotions.

Reading the ISFJ profile, I can see a lot of me in there.

"ISFJs are characterized above all by their desire to serve others, their "need to be needed.""

I think this is driving a lot of my career development - I've realized that I need to be in an environment where I can interact directly with the people I'm helping. HCI is not for me.

"Needless to say, ISFJs take infinite trouble over meals, gifts, celebrations, etc., for their loved ones--although strong Js may tend to focus more on what the recipient should want rather than what they do want."

You all had better want candy.

"One ISFJ trait that is easily misunderstood by those who haven't known them long is that they are often unable to either hide or articulate any distress they may be feeling. For instance, an ISFJ child may be reproved for "sulking," the actual cause of which is a combination of physical illness plus misguided "good manners." An adult ISFJ may drive a (later ashamed) friend or SO into a fit of temper over the ISFJ's unexplained moodiness, only afterwards to explain about a death in the family they "didn't want to burden anyone with." Those close to ISFJs should learn to watch for the warning signs in these situations and take the initiative themselves to uncover the problem."

Yeah, you do that. I can't articulate.

[test link via Aimzter]

* That's "MO 501: Human Behavior" as opposed to "SI 688: Fundamentals of Human Behavior"** or "SI 551: Information-Seeking Behavior," which I am also taking this semester.

** Sometimes abbreviated as Fun Human Behavior, which it isn't.***

*** Omigod, I have gone footnote-crazy.

srah | 10:29 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack
Tags: srah

Last Valentine's Day, I gave you my heart...

I've sent you all a lovely Valentine's Day card...

srah | 1:40 AM | TrackBack
Tags: holidays, valentine's day

February 13, 2005

The clicky-clatter of tiny shutters

I received an email from Amazon.com today: Hecate has been shipped. By Thursday or Friday of this week, there will be pictures of, like, my feet on this blog.

Hooray for wasting the Internet!

srah | 9:29 PM
Tags: camera, hecate

I got a huge chicken burrito as a parting gift. Swee.

I participated in a focus group today for a friend of mine, the focus of which* was the Influence of Hip-Hop Endorsements on Athletic Footwear Purchases. My answer was, 'It doesn't influence me at all because I'm only buying Converse from now on forever and ever.' I love my Converse.

I did mention in the focus group that I knew who all the artists they mentioned were, but I didn't say that I don't really listen to their music. It appeared to me as I was driving home that I should have said something along the lines of "I listen to the oldies station most of the time. So I'm probably more influenced by Jay and the Americans than Jay-Z! Or less by G-Unit and more by The Spinners themselves!"

So clever in hindsight! Such a nerd!

* The group, not the friend. It may be her focus as well - at least for this semester - but that's not what I meant. Besides, she really ought to be a "whom" instead of a "which." She doesn't have a pointy hat or a wart. THAT I KNOW OF! Alright, this footnote is longer than the post is at the point where I'm writing it, so I'm going to stop now.

srah | 7:31 PM | TrackBack
Tags: converse, shoes

Unconscious Mutterings

What on earth am I doing up at this hour??? Well, one thing I'm doing is free-associating...

srah | 8:27 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags: memes, unconscious mutterings

February 12, 2005

I'll think about that tomorrow!

My mom and I are watching Gone With the Wind and it has been recognized that I am Scarlett O'Hara Minus Southern Accent. Well, what's the mattuh with preferrin' to eat barbecue instead of talking about some silly war, anyway? I do declare!

I don't normally approve of hitting slaves, but for Prissy's sake, I'll make an exception. I'm proud of Scarlett for only verbally abusing Melanie Hamilton-Wilkes behind her back so far. I would have punched her by now, because SERIOUSLY, where did Ashley dig up this sappy, whispering wet blanket?

Well, I have a long life of adventure ahead of me, including marriages to the only Hamilton lamer than Melanie, Mr Stuttery Whiskers and Jugears. Yippee.

srah | 5:34 PM | TrackBack
Tags: gone with the wind, movies

Empty threats

I went to the store today to buy my digital camera. It was 11 cents more expensive there than on Amazon, but I wouldn't have to pay for shipping so it ended up being cheaper.

We stood at the digital camera counter for five minutes while the assistant chatted with another customer. She looked in our direction once then turned back to the customer and continued talking. Bad service makes me snarky and mean. I started loudly announcing that I was going to buy the camera on the Internet, even though I knew I was just going to stand there and wait. Finally I walked off and found another salesman and told him that I wanted to buy a digital camera but no one was helping me.

I pointed out the camera in the display and he wandered away to look it up in the computer, then informed me that they were no longer selling that model. IF YOU AREN'T SELLING IT, WHY IS IT ON DISPLAY? WHY DID I WAIT HERE FOR TEN MINUTES IF I CAN'T EVEN BUY IT?

"Well," my mom announced, "I should tell them that I won't be shopping at Circuit City anymore!"

"That's a nice sentiment," I responded, "But I don't think they'll take it very seriously, since we're at CompUSA."

I bought it at Amazon instead.

srah | 5:15 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

February 11, 2005

One small step for a tiny little girl... one great leap for jobkind

The bane of my job-applying existence this far has been the dreaded Cover Letter. As much emphasis as is put on resumés, I think we all know that all the important stuff goes in the Cover Letter. The Cover Letter is where it's at. The Cover Letter is what makes or breaks the deal. And so I have been terribly frightened* of the Cover Letter.

This morning I woke up and pried my eyes open, fired up Isidore (as I am wont to do first thing in the morning) and decided to read postings from the study-abroad listserv I joined recently. There was a posting for a job at a university in New York City that sounded okay. And best of all, the application process consisted of filling out an online application form. Bitchin', thort I, as I am wont to do, I could fill out an online application form like that. <insert finger-snapping noise here>

I'm not super-fantasizing about this particular job, so there wasn't the stress and fear of rejection - it was just a matter of filling the thing out. If I get an interview, cool. If not - well, it's in New York City. I don't know if I want to live there anyway.

So I filled out the online application form - vital statistics, employment history, education, computer skills, blah blah blah. I got to the end of the page where - surprise of surprises! - there was a big text box for you to copy and paste your Cover Letter!


So I started it because, hey, I've already filled out the rest of the form, so I might as well. I had to go to school and work in the middle of the day, but I finished the Cover Letter tonight, pasted it in the form and sent it off. I am now a member of the Applying For Jobs Club, just like the rest of you.

... WHAT? I have to do it again? And again? And again? Crap.

* To my Happy Hour Posse: That's a million points for me, thank you.

srah | 10:20 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack
Tags: job search

February 9, 2005

What a tangled Web I've weaved...

Right. Someone had a post recently where people were commenting about places they'd lived and what the name was for people who lived in that place. I left my little AnnArborite/Michigander/Vichyssoise/Grenobloise comment, asked some semi-rhetorical questions and left. Now I can't find it again to see if anyone took pity and answered my questions.

Does this sound familiar to anyone? I'd thought it was one of the ex-pat clique that I've been reading lately, but I can't find it anymore on those particular blogs. I may have followed a link from somewhere... Help! Amateur detectives, I implore you!

srah | 2:27 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack


I dreamt last night that I wanted to take a class at the Law School and had to go ask for permission from some big pooh-bah at their school. He showed me all over the school and was about to set me up with a roommate and a dorm room when I realized he thought I wanted to be a law student instead of just taking one of their classes. So instead he tried to fix me up with his nephew.

srah | 10:54 AM | TrackBack
Tags: dream

February 8, 2005

I can't even think of a title for this post because of the giggling

Every time I see the words Amish Face on this post, it makes me squash up my face with repressed giggles. AMISH FACE! Coming soon to a theater near you!

In the blahblahs, I would like you to tell me what you think the plot of Amish Face would be. Set your imaginations free!

srah | 10:05 AM | TrackBack
Tags: movies

A well-beveragèd employee is a happy employee

Last night in my Stephen M. Ross Business School of Business and Hey This Guy Ross Gave Us A Crapload Of Money class, we were talking about employee satisfaction, morale and rewards. Some of the things in our reading were just embarassingly stupid, like suggesting that you should go to clown college because people like managers with a sense of humour (CLOWNS ARE NOT FUNNY) or give out buttons that say "Caught caring!" when an employee does something thoughtful. I wanted to throw up because it seems so forced - like David Brent trying too hard to be the cool, funny, likable boss and coming off as pathetic and sad.

My boss brings milk to work for his coffee and shares it with all of his employees. Right off the bat when you work here, he informs you that he brings milk to work and that you can have some.

So I do. I have for the past year and a half - to the point where I've started to take it for granted. I'd forgotten that I've never been able to drink tea with milk at work at any other job, because bringing my own milk means that I would have to work through a half-gallon of milk before it goes bad, usually while only working there (and therefore drinking there) part-time.

Anyway, this is my little salute to my boss for one of the little things that count. Being able to drink tea with milk at work makes me happy. I can drink tea without milk, but milk is a little luxury that makes my workday happier.

What does your boss do that makes you happy?

srah | 9:34 AM | TrackBack
Tags: boss, milk, tea, the office (uk), work

They don't call it Fat Tuesday for nothing

Sell by: February 9, 2005
Use by: February 9, 2005

Can you taste that? That's the taste of no preservatives, just pure unadulterated lard. And a little sugar. And some flour to hold it together. All stuffed with jelly. This is the beauty of the paczek.

It is indeed a fine time of year to live in Michigan. This is our reward for December and January and that of winter that is yet to come. Handily, it also serves as insulation.

My favorite flavor of pączki? Red.

srah | 9:11 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack
Tags: holidays

February 7, 2005

'I've seen lonely times when I could not Phone a Friend'

My cell phone rang. I looked down at the display, assuming that it was someone who knew I'd been in class and had waited until five minutes after the end to call me. Instead I saw that it was my long-lost college roommate, Roommate. It seemed strange that she would call at 10:05 pm on a Monday, since we haven't seen each other in months and all of our recent correspondence has been in the form of LiveJournal comments. I answered the phone.

"Hi srah. Listen, in the movie Amish Face--"
"In the movie Office Space--"
"Oh, that's better - I thought you said--"
"In the movie Office Space, where does the guy take the Jennifer Aniston character to lunch?"

I suddenly remembered Roommate posting something about a quiz night at Conor O'Neill's and realized that I was a supremely vital Phone-a-Friend who could provide extremely vital trivia-type information! I'm actually pretty excited that she called me for something like this because I always felt like I had to have a *good reason* to call her and this gives me an excuse to call her out of the blue for something completely random. I thought for a moment and tried to remember the film.

"I think it's ********."

We wrapped up the call and she said she'd call me back in ten minutes to let me know how it went. She did and I was right. I am a trivia goddess. I came through. I am a cham-peen. I am pretty full of myself for knowing something as useless as that.

Do you know?

srah | 10:16 PM | TrackBack
Tags: movies, office space, roommate, trivia

Surprise international gifts!

"Are you an ex-pat who's missing goodies from home? Always wanted knick-knacks from another country but haven't managed to get there yet? Want to expand your horizons and meet people from around the world? Here's your chance!"

Vivi and Tracy are running The Great International Secret Blog Exchange. Sign-ups are going on until this Thursday, February 10. Send a care package from your part of the world!

srah | 2:04 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags: discovered

February 6, 2005

srah's Super Bowl halftime update

Who are you cheering for? I'm rooting for FedEx myself. Ah, that Burt Reynolds!

Oh... there's a football game on? Well, if I have to pick a team, I'll cheer for Philadelphia. I base this decision on absolutely no knowledge of professional football and the conviction that there's something creepy about Tom Brady.

Paul McCartney's halftime show is making me uncomfortable. I don't know what it is, but I feel very uneasy and on edge. It's like watching someone you know on stage - you want them to do very well, but there's this terrifying feeling that they will fail and you won't know what to say to them.

Which is odd, because I don't really envision having this confrontation with Sir Paul.

It was a lot easier when he did "Live and Let Die." This is probably because he was the most talented member of Wings and can carry their songs on his own. When he was singing Beatles songs, all I could think of was the voices and stage presences that were missing. That and he had a really crappy song selection: "Drive My Car" (which I hate) and "Get Back." They aren't exactly the biggest crowd-pleasers, but maybe Michael Jackson still owns all the big hits.

Well, it was pulled off without incident. No wardrobe malfunctions, but rather bland overall. Thanks, FCC, for making the whole world a little more boring.

Halftime's over - back to the main event...

srah | 8:29 PM | TrackBack
Tags: commercials, football, sports, super bowl

Unconscious Mutterings

It's time for the weekly free associations! And for sleeping! Night night.

srah | 12:47 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Tags: memes, unconscious mutterings

February 4, 2005

If I can make it there, I'll make it anywhere

I've got my placement for Alternative Spring Break so In a few weeks I'll be jetting off to New York, where I will wander around like a True Midwesterner, wearing black socks and shorts and staring up at tall buildings until I get my camera stolen. I will be working in the library of an unidentified* international organization and eating in their cafeteria, which I hear is marvelous.

I've only been to New York City once - and that was for less than a full day. Now I'll be there for a week - working, sightseeing and perhaps making new SI friends. Or wandering up to strangers in the cafeteria and trying to speak French to them.

* You could find it out pretty easily if you really wanted to but I'm not going to blog it...

srah | 1:37 PM | TrackBack
Tags: alternative spring break, alternative spring break 2005, new york city

February 3, 2005

Holy crêpe

Fie and drat. I have lost touch with my francophiliac ways and missed out on the most important holiday of the year.

Hope you Frenchies dropped a few on the floor in memory of your homies on the other side. Of the Atlantic.

srah | 2:19 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack
Tags: holidays

February 2, 2005


Teen Best Friends Week!

"My name is Justin and I play hockey for my local high school and I ROCK! HARD CORE! This is my friend Nate. He plays bass and he ROCKS! HARD CORE!"

"We're Tessa and Megan! We're cheerleaders!" *hug*


I want to solve the freaking puzzles - I could do without Pat Sajak and the moronic contestants. Does this show want to kill me? Is it my imagination or does each show get more painful than the one before it? Why am I still watching?

I'm watching so you don't have to, folks. It's Teen Best Friends Week. Don't say I didn't warn you.

srah | 7:01 PM | TrackBack
Tags: tv, wheel of fortune

The verdict is...

Screw you, Phil! Not only are you a harbinger of doom, you're also the worst rodent-poet I've ever heard.

srah | 10:11 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack
Tags: weather

February 1, 2005

Go north, young woman

For some reason, channel 54 is coming in clearly today. Channel 54 is the French-language CBC station from Ontario that usually comes in as fuzzy French playing over a field of snow. Today, for some reason, the picture is visible and the sound is audible. Today, it's watchable. And watchèd, dear readers. And watchèd.

Hooray! Television! In French! Sometimes we get Canadian public television in French, but the advantage of CBC is that there are commercials! In French! My dad and I have been sitting here, trying to decipher the news for about an hour. The only problem is... Canadian French makes me feel like my head's going to explode.

It's not like French French and I wouldn't mind if I could figure out how it's different. I got really excited when I heard the newscaster refer to "yogurts" because I could recognize the difference between the Canadian yogurt and the French yaourt. But when it's the same words, the words are still different.

It's like every single letter is pronounced slightly differently, in ways that my ears recognize as different but that my mouth can't recreate. When I watch French Canadian television, I try to repeat what's said and I can't. My mouth won't do it. I don't know how my mouth should be shaped in order to make these different noises. My brain can't figure out any patterns to follow.

It's the same thing in Spanish. When people tell me that I speak Spanish with a French accent, I can kind of see it, but I don't know how to pronounce the Spanish -cion so that it doesn't sound like the French -tion.

Perhaps I should trek off up to le Canada for a period of time to get some practice. I've never been to Quebec, but I fear I'd be one of those people who they hear speaking French-from-France, laugh at and ask to switch to English.

Back to deciphering the télé and gluing together my exploding head...

srah | 11:08 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack
Tags: french

Community-building exercises

Anyone use Audioscrobbler? I've just joined.

"Audioscrobbler is a computer system that builds up a detailed profile of your musical taste. After installing an Audioscrobbler Plugin, your computer sends the name of every song you play to the Audioscrobbler Server. With this information, the Audioscrobbler server builds you a 'Musical Profile'.

"[...] Audioscrobbler is able to automatically generate suggestions for new songs/artists you might like. These suggestions are based on the same principles as Amazon's "People who bought this also bought X,Y,Z", but because the Audioscrobbler data is what people are actually listening to, the suggestions tend to make more sense than Amazon."

srah | 4:12 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack
Tags: technology

Central Services! We do the work, you do the pleasure...

We are having central air conditioning installed in the house this week. They began today and should finish up by Friday. At this point, they've installed some of the tubes that the air will be flowing through but haven't connected them to the vents or, I assume, to the central cooling system. There are big, insulated silvery things poking out of holes in the ceiling and I'm concerned that a tiny Robert De Niro is going to pop out of one of them.

srah | 3:04 PM | TrackBack
Tags: brazil, construction, movies

SI mp3 swap: Week 2

The more I listen to other people's music, the more I wonder what I was thinking when I assembled my CD. Who wants all of my musicals, sappy romantic hokum and silliness? Sigh. Oh well, I'm sure someone will appreciate something on there!

I also realize that I know absolutely nothing about music. I thought my mix was kind of unusual and "out there" but now I'm realizing it's awfully mainstream, with a touch of the insane. Sigh. I suppose it reflects my personality.

Disc 1
When I got this disc, I popped it in, copied all the files into iTunes, then went through and deleted all the duplicate songs that I already had. We seem to have tastes that jive* well together, so I'd say I deleted at least 30 songs right off the bat. Ah, down to a nice, manageable, listenable 119 songs.

119 songs? Good night! They were nice, listenable songs, too, so I spent the rest of the week working through this disc and ignoring poor darling CD #2. I think the swap will, throughout the weeks, be rife** with this sort of sibling favoritism.

For you: Alabama 3 - Woke Up This Morning (Chosen One Mix)

Disc 2
When I saw this disc's creator on Saturday, I had to admit that I hadn't even listened to his disc yet. Yes, the mp3 swap is eating my life. Or vice versa. Point is, no time to listen to all this music! Every week is an adventure!

I have listened to some of the CD now, but unfortunately not enough to pick a track for you! Maybe later... I've got to keep on moving, as I will probably get two more CDs later today. I'm not sure how long I'll be able to keep up with any of the CDs enough to blog about them!

* I actually mean "jibe/gibe/gybe" rather than "jive", but there is a distinct possibility that I would do anything to use the word "jive" in a sentence.
** I like this word, too. It makes me think of Ralph Rackstraw from HMS Pinafore. Oddly, not Ralph Fiennes.

srah | 11:27 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack
Tags: si mp3 swap

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