Thursday, November 30, 2006
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
i am sitting in the cafe at school, "blogging" on paper for later and waiting for my probably crappy $3.99 pizza. number sixty-six. they will call me soon.
i will miss this school; i like my professors and most of the students. next semester i'm taking all my classes online so i can work more hours each week.
lots to tell you. went for my photo shoot, which was a bit awkward because it was so photo shoot-y. large, dark room with photographer lights and a solitary stool for my tush. i really hope i didn't look like a dork. i tried not to.
the newspaper office lived up to what you would imagine - an enormous sea of desks, no cubicles, just packed in. there must have been 200 on that floor alone, and papers, books, and all kinds of crap, sometimes spilling over, was piled on every one. true reporters. i saw one editing the layout of the sports page as i walked past. others stood around telling jokes. it was pretty cool.
boyfriend thinks i would make a good journalist. i'm not so sure, though. i dunno.
this pizza is, surprisingly, not bad. (if you had tasted the fried rice i once bought here, you'd be surprised too.) i just don't understand one of the girls who works here. she asked what kind of pizza i wanted and when i said "plain" she looked confused. she asked, "cheese?" yes dear, cheese.
i once tried to order a croissant from here; boy was that fun.
her: a what?
me: a croissant.
me: A CROISSANT
her: *thinking* oh, you mean a CROISS-AAAAANT?
she pronounced it as you would "rant" or "slant." okay, i don't need you to discuss shakespeare or molecular theory with me, but you should know how to pronounce croissant. it's on burger king commercials for crying out loud.
i bought this pretty lipstick for my photo shoot and it was one of those that makes false promises about staying on all day, even after you eat. naturally, i assumed it was bullshit but this one means it, and how. i ate, drank, brushed my teeth, wiped it off with tissue, the works, but this shit won't come off. i'm still wearing yesterday's application. this morning i woke up and started brushing with my white toothbrush and the handle became pink. holy shit, industrial strength lipstick!!
i went to a poetry reading last night at the local independent (read: coolest on the planet) bookstore. it was given by my world lit professor and the dean of arts and humanities, both of whom have recently published collections of their poetry. it was kick ass. i listened to verses about angels and devils and fixing trucks. this is why i love austin.
Sunday, November 26, 2006
i had been wondering how i would work up the nerve to ask my mom if i could have my car in the spring. it will be expensive to ship it so i thought maybe boyfriend and i could road trip it across country. i mean, i'm tired of hopping across the highway on foot, man. but i wasn't sure if she would go for it. this morning, we're talking on the phone and to my surprise she says, "so what's your plan? you're home for the holidays, then you're moving back to texas? how long will you be there, a year?" i said, "well, at least until the summer, then i don't know." so she says, "why don't you take your car? it's just sitting here." (it's really her car but she uses the family car and this one has always been "my" car.) "well, yeah, i was going to ask you about that, mom. i need to look into how much it would cost to ship..." "nah, that's too expensive, why don't you just drive down?"
i was shocked and pleased. i don't know if we will actually do it but it's good to have the option.
Saturday, November 25, 2006
Thursday, November 23, 2006
maybe i'm just high on having eaten turkey, not tofurkey. they didn't have tofurkey so i said fuck it. like i said, can't eat meat all the time, but i can like twice a month, which is the rate i'm at now. boyfriend and i ate and watched football alternated with a cary grant/doris day movie and the thanksgiving episodes of roseanne, and now we are pretty much passed out.
i am thankful for...
...family that loves and supports me
...boyfriend that loves and supports me
...friends that love and support me
...living in america* ...1st amendment, yayyyy
...having enough food each day to complain about being fat
...good job, nice coworkers
...vanilla almond bark-flavored tofutti
*post on patriotism and anti-americanism and all my thoughts on both to come soon
we can't go to my boss's house for dinner because i'm still sick. rats.
talked to the family this morning and yes, was a little sad about not being home, but i will be there soon. boyfriend ran out to whole foods to buy us thanksgiving dinner so i will not feel that bad while munching tofurkey and potatoes.
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
i am pretty excited. every saturday the newspaper features "faith" stories. i wrote and submitted one and they just contacted me that they want to use it two weeks from now. they asked me to go to their office so they can take my picture. yay!
it is actually a nice story; i was not hyper-critical or anything. it's in the same vein as my pilgrim's progress post. future priest will be proud.
so glad i'm not traveling home for thanksgiving; looks like the airports are a mess.
i wish i could just feel better already. i have to send boyfriend to the library to pick up my items on hold. (i cannot wait until after thanksgiving weekend! i reserved the movie version of "the mahabharata," a documentary on amazons and a book by groucho!!) why don't libraries deliver? is this not the 21st century?
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Monday, November 20, 2006
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.
For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears.
When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me.
Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
paul got it right sometimes, at least. now if only we could do something about that "women, shut up" part.
my sister and her boyfriend recently broke up. she usually goes through boyfriends fairly quickly, but beneath her tough, hard-as-nails exterior she is pretty sensitive, and she always takes it very hard. this time is no exception.
she rarely ever lets down the tough exterior with me, but since she has been broken up and vulnerable, we have grown remarkably closer. she actually calls me... often. she never used to call me and would ask, "what do you want?" when i called her. now she calls, albeit to bitch about the ex, but also to tell me about a new guy she met who might get her mind off the old one, or about something stupid her friend did. it is very cool! nothing could make me happier. i am nervously counting down the days until she finds a new boyfriend and dumps me altogether. heh, "dumps me." that's funny.
blah. sick in bed. had to miss three classes today, just couldn't do it. sniffles = exacerbated plus an overall feeling of weakness that is preventing me from walking around the house much, let alone walking to school.
last night's meeting was fun. only two people came but they were two cool people from our first meeting so it didn't matter. my tzatziki came out okay, but not good enough to compel me to make it again when you can get it at the store, man. i actually fell asleep in the afternoon so boyfriend cleaned the apartment and ordered greek appetizers so all would be ready in time, before waking me. he's such a sweetie.
we decided to read 'the arabian nights' for december. ambitious of us, i know. it's like 900-1000 pgs or something. at least we will have fun choosing a restaurant.
i am reading an excellent book on amazon women that everyone should read. it's in the side bar, over there --> called "on the trail of the women warriors." man, i'm just loving it! my presentation for class is going to be kick ass (no pun intended ;)
Saturday, November 18, 2006
What part of the past would you bring back if you possibly could?
What character trait would you alter if you could?
overly-sensitive. makes me hard to live with, i'm sure.
Which skill would you like to have the time and energy to really work on?
i would become a better writer. no matter how much i work on it and how proud i am of a finalized piece of work, i inevitably get sick of it and think it's crap. *shrug*
Are you money poor, love poor, time poor or freedom poor?
i don't think i'm any of those, fortunately. i could use more money, but who couldn't? doesn't make me poor.
What element of your partner’s character would you alter if you could?
he reads this, dude, my hands are tied. nothing, he's perfect. *bats eyelashes innocently*
What three things are you going to do next year that you’ve been meaning to do for ages but never got around to?
submit my work more and hopefully get published more.
start seriously looking into graduate programs.
If your fairy godmother gave you three wishes, what would you wish for?
1 - a backbone for mommy (ouch, that sounds nasty, but it's not, i assure you.)
2 - the ability to see sisters and friends whenever i want, regardless of where i'm living
3 - the means and freedom to travel as often as i want. i miss italia!! (and want badly to go to other places.)
What one thing would you change about your living conditions?
i would lower the rent. we love this place but in the new year we either need to move or get a *gulp* roommate. it's either pay up or shut up, i suppose.
How could the quality of your free time be improved?
i could study more. i generally work hard but sometimes i get lazy and it's hard to shake.
What change have you made to your life recently that you’re most proud of?
i am very proud of moving out of my house, out of my city, and beginning my life with boyfriend. it was toxic for me back there and this helps my family relationships more than hurts them.
yesterday my boss invited boyfriend and i to go to his house for thanksgiving. how nice is that?? i think he feels sorry for me, being so far away from my family and all. i am going to make my pecan dessert dish, woohoo. i am glad that we're going because i was just going to cook for the two of us, and boyfriend isn't american so thanksgiving doesn't mean anything to him anyway. now we can properly celebrate stealing the land from the "indians" ;)
tomorrow is the book club meeting. we are doing greek-themed potluck at my apartment because we read "the secret history." excited :) i hope my tzatziki comes out okay.
yesterday i brought cookies to the office and instantly became a hit. i think i might be the most popular now. although by monday everyone will forget.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
so i was in the library this afternoon. i sat down with issues of sojourners (barack obama's ideas on religion in america intrigued me, but i got bored fast) and bookmarks (is that the name of the magazine with all the book recommendations?), when i became perturbed by some people in the mag section conversing fairly loudly for a library. i tried to shrug it off but it distracted me, so i did what anyone would do - i eavesdropped. from the snippets i got, i soon realized that they were two homeless people.
man: "and that was when he beat you up?"
woman: "no, he beat me up before then."
man: "do you still have bruises?"
man: "let me tell you, when you're out there and hungry, and they start giving out food, you don't care what it is. it could be peanut butter, whatever. it tastes good."
it blew my mind. talk about real-life problems. poor people.
c.s. lewis once wrote about the fact that everyone has this feeling of longing towards something, and whether we realize it or not, that is our longing towards heaven and being connected to god. i cannot speak for everyone, obviously, but i know that i have that feeling. whether it regards heaven and god, as lewis postulates, i have not yet decided, but in my born-again christian days, that's how i interpreted it. long before i even read lewis.
at times that feeling would grow stronger. it seemed like i could touch what i was aiming at, but that only intensified the desire. this would happen whenever i got out of the city and into a pastoral setting, or while being alone on incredibly sunny days, or listening to certain songs (christian or otherwise), or being with certain kinds of people.
now that i am technically not a christian, or at least the kind i used to be, i don't know how to channel that feeling. i no longer look at it as, "yay, i'm going to heaven someday." it's just a feeling that i don't know will ever be fulfilled. if true love and having a good job and having amazing friends and all that hasn't yet fulfilled it, what ever could, short of something supernatural and miraculous?
and it is interesting to me that i am still deeply touched by certain christian "stuff." i had to read excerpts from john bunyan's "the pilgrim's progress" last night for brit lit. i had read the book years ago, as a christian, and while growing up, my mother used to show us the cartoon version of it. the story is a huge part of me. so i was reading and i read the lines that have always gotten to me more than any other. hopeful says to christian,
see, christian is swimming in the river of death, trying to get to heaven, but it is too scary for him and he thinks he is drowning. yet when hopeful gives him this reminder, he is able to do it, and he makes it to the celestial city.
"Be of good cheer,
Jesus Christ maketh thee whole."
that line is so beautiful i can't stand it.
more to come on this in part two.
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
liz phair kicks serious ass.
"Why can't I breathe whenever I think about you?
Why can't I speak whenever I talk about you?"
"You think that I go home at night
Take off my clothes, turn out the lights
But I burn letters that I write
To you, to make you love me
Yeah, I drive naked through the park
And run the stop sign in the dark
Stand in the street, yell out my heart
To make, to make you love me"
"You're like my favorite underwear
It just feels right, you know it"
"And whatever happened to a boyfriend
The kind of guy who tries to win you over?
And whatever happened to a boyfriend
The kind of guy who makes love 'cause he's in it?
And I want a boyfriend
I want a boyfriend
I want all that boring old shit like letters and sodas
Letters and sodas"
Monday, November 13, 2006
and i do. i saw him this morning, i will see him this evening, i see him every day, but i hurry. i walk as fast as i can with my heavy books and my sweat dripping down in the texas sun. i walk this way for blocks and blocks just to make it in time. after being together for close to a year and a half, i still do it. after living together for months and seeing each other day and night, i still do it.
it's things like that that let you know that you are undoubtedly with the right person.
Sunday, November 12, 2006
yesterday boyfriend and i went to the mall for clothes shopping. oh, yes, clothes shopping. i am always such a joy in these matters. after the trauma was over, we went to this really nice indian restaurant. we haven't had indian food in such a long time - only once since we've been here these past three months - and it was very good and a beautiful place overall.
i can't get used to this daylight savings thing. it gets dark at like 6, pitch black by 6:30. i'm falling asleep every day at 9:30 or so! last night we came home and i conked out at 8:30. 8:30 p.m.
looking forward to thanksgiving. my first thanksgiving away from home. i'm going to make my mom's dishes (except turkey :P) for boyfriend and i, and we will possibly swap food and hang out with his friends upstairs.
Saturday, November 11, 2006
Thursday, November 09, 2006
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
Monday, November 06, 2006
Sunday, November 05, 2006
nor stand in the way of sinners
nor sit in the seat of scoffers
but her delight is on the law of the lord
and on that law she meditates day and night.
she shall be like a tree planted by streams of water
which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither
whatever she does prospers.
not so are the wicked
they are like the chaff that the wind blows away
therefore the wicked shall not stand in the judgment
nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.
for the lord watches over the way of the righteous
but the way of the wicked shall perish.
the website i mentioned is going to be mailing me a book to start out with, so i can do my reviewing soon. this is good because after finishing the secret diary, i am not reading any fiction that is thrilling me. ishmael is a let-down because i hate reading about teacher-student exchanges. that's what killed sophie's world for me. the book itself was great, but i couldn't stick with it. same thing here. this damn gorilla will be explaining the same stupid things to the same stupid man throughout the whole book and it's already killing me.
the books i'm reading on writing, though, are fabulous. FAB-YOU-LUSS. and i'm bored with school, but that happens. so i hope and pray they send me something good to review.
Saturday, November 04, 2006
Friday, November 03, 2006
Thursday, November 02, 2006
i am getting so bored with my brit lit class... i don't know why. i like the professor and i like some of what we read, but i suppose i am getting into this contemporary faze and not into reading classics. no, that can't be right, because i am still loving my world lit class. i don't know.
i wanted to write about something that i find fairly interesting and that is the perception of jews today. before i say anything, however, i want to preface it with a little bit of modesty topos. unfortunately, i only really began keeping up with the news a couple of years ago. before then, i didn't know very much about world issues. what i knew was what i heard, and although it can be argued that media is biased, opinions of regular people in your life are usually even more so. hence, i do not know very much about the history of israeli-palestinian conflict, and consequently, i don't favor one side over the other. it would be presumptuous of me to have an opinion or to take a side when i don't know all the facts.
as i said before, i always went on what i heard, and being in a predominantly christian circle for most of my life, i always heard pro-israel. the arguments i heard were that arabs/muslims had plenty of countries - hell, they had the whole middle east - and israel should have a place of their own. this was not fair simply because of ratio. everyone sided with israel because they are "god's chosen people" and that's why they have so many problems. everyone picks on them for this reason. they don't do anything wrong.
so anyway, we are reading the old testament in class - 1 and 2 samuel. we are looking at saul, but mostly david, as a hero figure. what does heroism mean? is there a code of conduct? stuff like that. we have determined that, more so than in other texts, in the old testament, obedience to god is the primary thing. nothing comes before it. even if you have good intentions, if you don't do what god tells you to do, you screwed up. big time. it was also hard to ignore god telling them to kill surrounding tribes, "both man and woman, child and infant," like, every five minutes.
anyway, while discussing the story, we obviously discuss the culture and history that surrounds it. there is a muslim man in my class who is extremely smart. he's so smart, it frightens me. he is interested in religion, but he is not just informed about islam. he knows about judaism, christianity, eastern religions - everything. it is so interesting to listen to him talk. he's great, man.
the thing that bothered me a little was the fact that he made several ... i won't call them anti-semitic, but perhaps anti-israel? ... comments during the class discussions. he said that the jews have always had this offensive idea about being god's chosen ones. he said that israel has always been like a hermit crab, going around and living on other people's land, and that they are learning what the u.s. is now learning: that when you take over other people's land, they try to kill you. and several other comments to this effect. our professor told him that he was making judgments and he laughed and said, "i'm not the teacher. i don't have to be politically correct."
these comments bothered me, but the issue of why they bothered me is the interesting part. did they bother me because they were wrong? no. i am not saying that they were right, but as i stated before, i don't have enough knowledge of the history to say, definitively, that he was wrong. that is not what upset me.
i was upset mainly because he didn't know if anyone in the room was jewish. i may not be jewish, but my great grandmother was. it really isn't considerate to make such strong remarks against a group of people in mixed company. if we had talked about islam and i had made strong remarks against muslims, i bet he would have flipped. i know people think we go too far with political correctness, and perhaps we do, but i see a great necessity for it on some level. maybe we wouldn't need it in a perfect world, but in a world full of hatred, it doesn't hurt.
the fact that my great grandmother was jewish contributes to my defensiveness of them, but that is not all. i am a product of the judeo-christian tradition. i cannot separate the judeo from the christian. when i read those bible stories, i didn't think of the israelites as the other. i thought of it as my history. the history of god's people was my history. it didn't matter that i wasn't jewish, the new testament took care of that, and so adam and eve, abraham, moses, ruth, david, esther, job, deborah... they were all my forbears.
and i don't like jews to the expense of liking muslims; i like both. one of boyfriend's friends, whom i like and get along with well, is muslim. he came over for a couple of minutes the other day and saw the bible on the table. he said, "what are you reading, the bible?" and then we talked for a bit about it. he said that stories about jesus are in the koran too. i was surprised; i hadn't known that. but it was not a hostile conversation at all. he didn't say, "ew, why are you reading this?"
i guess i was just wondering whether i was upset for the right reasons. i wasn't upset because i was on the opposing side of the israeli-palestinian conflict; i'm not on a side. i wasn't really upset for professional/scholarly/whatever reasons. i was upset for emotional reasons. and did i really have a right to be, seeing as i'm not jewish?
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the next 4 sentences on your blog along with these instructions.
5. Don't you dare dig for that "cool" or "intellectual" book in your closet! I know you were thinking about it! Just pick up whatever is closest.
"'Drank it all the time over in Italy. They have all kinds of places where you sit around and do that, you know.' 'I've heard.' He took off his sunglasses and sat down at the table."
how appropriate. i miss venice!
halloween was cool. my colleagues came up with some crazy costumes including william wallace from braveheart, playboy bunnies with hugh hefner (who was really a woman), a whoopee cushion, a streaker, etc. by the time i got home, however, i was really stressed out over a bad commute and conked out at 9.30. no joke. woke up this morning at 7. it was nice... wish i could do that every night. i'm a morning person by far.