Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Most Recent Trip to Missouri

Picture of Mom and Granny.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

The Evil Powerpoint...

One of the many, many examples of why I DETEST Powerpoint:

Also, check out Edward Tufte's _Wired_ article about Powerpoint:

(I also "borrowed" the picture from Tufte's website:

Anyway, I had thought that I was totally alone in my intense hatred of Powerpoint--until this morning, when I saw an editorial about Powerpoint in _The Washington Post_:

I am glad to know that I am not the only person who has been brainwashed by the PP phenonomen. I feel that it is now my ethic duty to inform the world about the evils of Powerpoint. So far I've discovered that people get defensive when confronted about their PP habit. Perhaps there needs to be a new classification in the DSM-IV concerning over-dependence on PP. I think there need to be treatment facilities set up--you know, to teach people how to make effective presentations that actually convey information.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Praise be to his holiness, the Flying spaghetti Monster!


Well, school starts on Monday. I am still not set up for tutoring, but at least now I know where I am going to be--at least for now. I will be working in the writing center, but the prof in charge of the wc really does not want me there--she has some idea about students getting mixed messages or something. Whatever. I think she's pretty lucky that I will be there. If her tutors get an ESL students they don't want to deal with, they can just send him/her over to me. I know that when I worked in the wc at UMBC there were a lot of tutors who didn't feel comfortable working with ESL students. Oh well. What a mess. I hate it when already complicated things become even more complicated because someone gets a bug in his or her ass and decides to initiate a power struggle. It happened at the IUFM last year in France. At least this year I speak the language--so I already am way ahead of where I was last year.

So. There was an English graduate assistant get-together last Wednesday. I went but I only lasted about 30 seconds--a new record, even for me. It was held in this tiny, tiny room that had a large table in the center. There was, quite literally, no room to move. I walked in, looked around, realized that there was absolutely no one I recognized, and walked out again. Meet and Greets are honestly and absolutely my idea of hell. I don't know if there is really anything worse. (I don't like bars either--for pretty much the same reason.) Boy, I am such a loser. I have to be careful or I will wind up living in a log cabin in... Canada. Not that that would be such a bad thing. Except I would have to have central heat.

Replaced the flapper in my toilet. I know, I know, that is not a big deal, but I'm still proud of myself. Maybe one day I will move out on my own--maybe even buy a home. Wow. Better not get too crazy just yet.

So. I have not gone on any dates in two years now. Over two years I think. Why not? Umm, didn't I just cover the fact that I am an anti-social loser? Still, I can't help but wonder if there is something fundamentally wrong with me. I mean, here I am, 26 years old and living in a little shell-cave. Then again, not that I have been looking. The last time I tried the whole boyfriend thing it was a flaming disaster (and I don't mean that he was gay). He was just so damned immature. It really started me thinking about guys, especially guys my age. With abnormally few exceptions, the guys I have dated have been like children. Maybe that would be fine if I wanted kids, but I don't. On one hand, I can't help but think that maybe my expectations are too high. Then I start to think that the expectations I have for guys are still not as high as the expectations I have for myself. So should I really be willing to compromise that much? Then I start to think that it is all fine to have high expectations if one is drop-dead attractive--which I am not. I'm not ugly, but I have freckles and glasses, which are not high up on the list of all things hot. But if I am going to have to "settle" then why bother? Why not just remain single? It would be nice to have someone to travel with, but other than that--! I don't want kids, I don't want to get married--hell, I don't even want to live with someone (let alone share my bed with someone. I sleep in the middle--dead center. No way in hell I am going to change that now). Then again, if it were all fine and dandy, would I even have brought up the fact that I have not dated for so long? Or maybe it is just pressure from society? Maybe it doesn't bother me--and that is what actually bothers me. Hmm. Or maybe my question is: is it a problem with guys or is it a problem with me? If it is a problem with guys, that's fine. But if it is a problem with me--well, what then. What would I change and would I even want to change? Isn't the whole idea now not to change for guys? But it doesn't seem possible to live with them if one does not change. They start out all, "whatever you want," then a few months later they already expect you to plan your life around theirs. No traveling (and they would never, ever go with you), no this, but that is okay. If you like popular music you are shallow. If you like classical music you are a snob. WTF? I just think that if you are in a relationship it should be because the person you are with makes you a better person. I have seen friends with people who bring out the worst in them and friends with people who bring out the best in them--I know which I prefer. But most guys seem to bring out the worst in me--and then I hate myself for being such a bitch. Ugh. UGH! And I can't just become a lesbian because I don't want to have sex with girls. Looks like a life of celibacy for me.

Sunday, August 21, 2005


So. I watched _Bride and Prejudice_ twice in as many nights. I now have the song "No life without wife" going through my head. All I can say about the movie is... Fun! Maybe it helps to have seen a couple of Bollywood movies before watching it. I don't know, as I've never seen any. But I still enjoyed the sheer lunacy that is B&P.

Audience recommendation: People between about 5 and 45, though both ends are flexible depending on the person's sense of humor.

Sense of humor required: Weird. Bizarre. A sense of lunacy is helpful.

Nodding acquaintance with _Pride and Prejudice_ enhances viewing pleasure.

As an added bonus, Naveen Andrews is in it (whom my Mom adores and who, as she continually points out, has a thing for older women).

Thursday, August 18, 2005

My Cousin the Model

Yes, this is my cousin. Well, actually my cousin's daughter. So that would make her, what, my second cousin? Or my first cousin once removed? Well, whatever, she is just way too cute. This picture actually doesn't do her justice.

And if you doubt that anyone who looks like me could be related to anyone who looks like her, just check out the nose. Need I say more?

Thursday, August 11, 2005


Starting to think about school... and the fact that maybe I should be doing some reading to prepare myself. I can't get my textbooks yet, though, so I can't read them. I do have a tiny book about Derrida sitting behind my toilet that I occasionally glance through. I'm thinking I should maybe read some Saussure... father of modern linguistics and all that. I just don't know if we will actually be doing any Saussure because... I don't have my textbooks yet. Maybe we will just study his ideas without attributing them to S. Maybe we won't even read his work in translation--maybe we will just read a slightly more understandable treatment of his ideas. Then again, maybe we will be expected to read all of his major works in the original French.

What brought all this on? Well, besides the fact that there are about three more weeks to go before classes start, I am reading the latest Umberto Eco. And, as always happens when I read the great Eco, I am feeling very, very dumb. All of his characters speak, like, fifteen languages and are amazingly intelligent. It makes me think of how dim I felt when I was in Europe. Sometimes it felt that everyone around me was fluent in at least three different languages. TO live in Europe and only speak one language? Impossible! Inconceivable! Highly unlikely! I feel like a great, ponderous ape in comparison with these lithe, quick monkeys. Unfair, but completely my fault.


There is a church in Salisbury that has a sign which reads: We are saved, you are not.

I have been saved. By the Flying spaghetti Monster. I have been touched by his noodly appendage.

Sunday, August 07, 2005


Just saw Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with Shari and Rob. It was very, very odd... but enjoyable. I think J. Depp was attempting the channel Michael Jackson... hmmm, pasty white guy with father issues who invites a young boy to come and stay with him... as long as he doesn't bring his parents. Sound like anyone we know?

I would recommend the movie for anyone over the age of, say twenty-three who has a reasonably twisted sense of humor. Otherwise, stick with Gene Wilder (who, in my mind, is still perfection as Willy Wonka). I will not say that one version is better than the other--just that they appeal to different crowds. I consider them companion peices.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Feeling a little like Atlas now. Heavy.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

I have a new cousin!

I have a new cousin and his name is Luke Hower. How exciting. He was born on the 1st of August (what zodiac sign would that make him?) and he weighed in at OVER 9 POUNDS! (You must keep in mind that his mother is a teeny tiny little Korean-American). Of course, it has been a couple of days now so he's probably put on some more weight. I think they should have called him TANK. Anyway, he's cute and, so far, very Korean looking. I'll post pics later.