Saturday, June 30, 2007

Macaroni salad and the sleazy underbelly of game shows

Well, it passed. The nausea, that is. Apparently, it was fatigue masquerading as nausea. I slept for a few hours, felt better, and then headed to my cousin's annual 4th of July picnic.

My cousin and I have the same first name. I was going to say that we share a name, but that sort of sounds like she uses it on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays; and I get it the rest of the week. That's not really how this works.

In order to avoid all confusion, she is called Big T and I am called Little T. This made some sense when she was a big girl, and I was a little girl. For the past twenty years, though, it has sounded increasingly stupid. I suggested we call me Young, Hot T and her The Other One. That hasn't quite caught on like I'd hoped.

In other disappointing news, there was no potato salad. This year, it was macaroni salad. Which, everyone knows, is shit compared to potato salad. I was unbelievably bummed, but drank my way through the pain. I'm a trooper.

Finally, some decisions were made at the picnic. The family decided that Hillary is the best candidate. We admit that none of us really wants to have a drink with her. But, she is smart. We've all seen how well the executive branch runs when powered by a guy with the brains of an earthworm. So, we're thinking we should try something new--we're voting for the candidate with a triple-digit IQ score.

We also decided we're going to start our own TV network. So far, we have two shows lined up. The first is weather. A naked woman stands in front of a map and says, "It could rain, or not. Who cares? You can see my boobies." This was my uncle's idea. None of us could seem to articulate a solid argument against it, so it stands (or, I should say, she stands...without any clothes on). The second show is my cousin, Joe, talking about the sleazy underbelly of game shows, past and present. Joe knows a lot about this. He's done some research, or something. We haven't yet decided if he'll be clothed.

This too shall pass...

right? The nausea I have right now is going to go away in the next two hours. I am not getting the same intestinal flu bug that made Lolita projectile vomit the other day. I am not getting it, because I am supposed to go to a picnic this afternoon. With potato salad. And I love potato salad.

So, I'm not getting the flu. This nausea will pass.
I'm eating that potato salad, dammit.

I'm off now. Going to lie down. Because, frankly, I don't feel so good.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Holey jeans

I wore the holes in them myself.
I don't trust people who buy their jeans pre-torn.
My life wears through denim.
How is it that yours does not?

Note to self

I have got to quit posting long-winded stories at 1 am. I spend the next day trying to figure out why the hell I thought something was so funny (or how it even made sense) the night before.

Maintained by the local housing authority

Kelly called me the other day. I answered, and she said, "Hi T it's Kelly and I wondered what you were doing today because if you're not busy I was thinking maybe you could come help us move this client of ours out of her apartment because Claudia said that she needed to move right now and you know when Claudia says that I think well this must be important and so I was trying to think of people who might be up for something spontaneous like this and I was wondering if you could meet us in twenty minutes and bring a truck." And then, she heaved in a breath.

This was the first time Kelly had ever called me. I'm not even sure how she found my number (or how she developed such an amazing lung capacity). As she came up for air, I said, "Whoa...slow your roll. Now, tell me that again. You want what?"

"Well, if you're not busy I was thinking maybe you could come help us move this client of ours out of her apartment because Claudia said that..."

I interrupted her here because I was afraid she was going to finish that sentence, and die of hypoxia.

"Okay, stop. I'm just going to repeat the parts I understood and ask you questions to fill in the rest. So, you want me to come help you move..."

She wanted me to come help her move a Mexican woman, new to this country, out of her apartment. She needed people to haul a few pieces of furniture into a truck and then drive them across town. She called me because I have the upper body strength of a kitten, and I drive a Corolla--I'm an obvious choice.

There were lots of other parts to the story, but my father, the IRS agent, once explained to me the value of something called plausible deniability. Remembering his words of wisdom, I quickly decided to ask her not to fill in too many blanks. "You know what? Why don't you just give me the address, and I'll operate on a strictly need-to-know basis, okay?"

I showed up at a government subsidized, county run apartment building. She had also managed to recruit two strong men to help us, one of whom actually had a truck. When we got to the 5th floor apartment, the guys took the sofa, and Kelly and I grabbed the recliner. It was all going pretty smoothly, until we got to the elevator.

Have I ever told you about my claustrophobia? It's something else I get from my dad. If I can't find the stairs, or I'm more than six flights from my destination, I'll do the long as it isn't more than half full. If it is, I'll wait for the next one, or grab a Gatorade and consider the stairs a good cardio workout.

Kelly and I pushed this recliner into a tiny, un-air-conditioned elevator on the 5th floor of a building maintained by the local housing authority. I really hesitated to get in there with her and the chair. But, I did.

Do I really need to continue? You know what happened next, right?

Yeah. The elevator got stuck between the 4th and 5th floors. There was no point in pushing the alarm button. No one comes to this building to take care of anything. Ever. So there I was in a small, hot, metal box, pinned against the wall with a recliner thinking about how I was going to have to eventually kill Kelly and eat her to survive.

Then, she started talking in paragraphs without punctuation again; and I considered the possibility that I may have to kill her long before the hunger set in.

I started praying that God would either fix the elevator, or save me some trouble and smite Kelly. (That's how I do the praying--I give him options.) And, in one of those moments that reminds me just how much he loves me best, the elevator started moving again.

We weren't stuck long. In fact, a less neurotic person may not have been the least bit bothered. Next time, she should call that person.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Medical trip to Sudan
December 2007
I hope...


A few days ago, I wrote about how I love the way amazing writing can steal my breath--literally make me feel as though the air has been taken from my chest. It is a powerful, delicious feeling. I ended the post by saying that I would be reading The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers this week. Maria shared with me one of her favorite passages from the book--a passage that left her breathless. I promised her that when I finished, I would do the same with my favorites. I am keeping that promise...

His bowels seemed weighted with lead, and he walked slowly and lingered against fences and the cold, wet walls of buildings by the way. Descent into the depths until at last there was no further chasm below. He touched the solid bottom of despair and there took ease.

In this he knew a certain strong and holy gladness. The persecuted laugh, and the black slave sings to his outraged soul beneath the whip. A song was in him now--although it was not music but only the feeling of a song. And the sodden heaviness of peace weighted down his limbs so that it was only with the strong, true purpose that he moved. Why did he go onward? Why did he not rest here upon the bottom of utmost humiliation and for a while take his content?

But he went onward.

The silence in the room was deep as the night itself. Biff stood transfixed, lost in his meditation. Then suddenly he felt a quickening in him. His heart turned and he leaned his back against the counter for support. For in a swift radiance of illumination he saw a glimpse of human struggle and of valor. Of the endless fluid passage of humanity through endless time. And of those who labor and of those who--one word--love. His soul expanded. But for a moment only. For in him he felt a warning, a shaft of terror. Between the two worlds he was suspended. He saw that he was looking at his own face in the counter glass before him...And he was suspended between radiance and darkness. Between bitter irony and faith.

And I was breathless.

I am now moving on to Virginia Woolf, rereading Mrs. Dalloway, a book I haven't touched since college. After that, it's To the Lighthouse. Then...back to medicine.

And finally, as long as we are talking about amazing writing, please treat yourself by visiting Maria's latest post. She is saying goodbye to her neighbor, Sven, as he prepares to leave for school; and well...I'll let her take it from there.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

I'm her bitch

My phone rang tonight. I picked it up. It was a restricted number, but I answered anyway.

"Is this my bitch?" she said slowly.

I smiled. "Oh, you know it is," I said.

She let out a huge laugh and said, "Honey, how the hell are ya?"

It was DW, calling me from the hospital. DW is a labor and delivery nurse. Before med school, I was an aide in labor and delivery; and I basically spent 12 hour shifts following nurses' orders. All in all, it wasn't a bad job. Most of them were women with whom I thoroughly enjoyed working.

But then there was Mildred. Mildred was The Church scrubs. And she got off (or came as close to that as she ever will) ordering me around. During my second week on the job, she marched into the nurses' station to ask me to do something she was too busy pontificating to do for herself.

DW saw the look on my face when Mildred spoke to me, and said in a low, slow voice, "Don't talk to my bitch."

"What?" Mildred asked in shock and horror.

DW said, "You heard me. She's my bitch, and you're not allowed to talk to her today."

I didn't really know DW, and what I did know, scared me. But, I knew I hated Mildred. So when Church Lady said, "You shouldn't let her talk to you that way," I shrugged my shoulders and said, "What choice do I have? I'm her bitch."

It was the smartest thing I ever said at work.

And it was work with DW, because she is a hell of a labor nurse. Her patients always deliver vaginally. When she says, "Honey, that baby's coming out if I have to go in after it," she's not kidding. I can't tell you how many times I heard, "Come on, bitch. I need you to hold my patient's leg while I try something." The entertainment I found in watching her 'try something' always made it worth the back ache I got hoisting pregnant thighs into the air.

Plus, nobody messed with me when DW was around. When we weren't doing anything, they would occasionally come to ask her, "Can I borrow T?" She would always look at me for a nod yes or no and then answer accordingly.

Now, she's begging me to come back and do my residency there. She said, "I just want to watch you write orders for Mildred."

I laughed. "And, you want your bitch back."

"Well, yeah. But you know I wouldn't let anybody fuck with you. I take good care of my bitch."

"Yes...yes you do."

When you project yourself into that destination, you can look back and see the footsteps, clearly. Tread the footsteps; they are going to guide you.

I plucked this from the comments.
I want it in the archives as a post I can always find and return to.

Thank you M.B.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

She spends all day tirelessly holding up my glasses.
Never complains.
She's such a great nose.

Sunday, June 24th:
Thank you for all the lovely compliments.

I actually posted this because my nose has not always been my favorite feature. It's very prominent and looks a little out of place on my narrow face. But...I've decided it's time to either change or embrace those things about me that I haven't liked in the past.

When I saw the way my ex looked at me earlier this week--like a possession he wanted to destroy--I wondered how I let that happen. How did I let him nearly devour me? How did I let a person like him get so close? I'm not entirely sure.

I wonder, though, if it happened because I wasn't sure who I was--who I was letting him get so close to. I think that I didn't protect myself because I didn't even know myself.

I need to figure out who I am--a process that I think will entail embracing those things I haven't always liked and changing those I decide I don't want to embrace. And I need to do some of this before I can be with someone else.

Does that make any sense? I'm not sure.

This picture of my nose is a tiny step in the process...

Matt poked me

I was tagged for the following meme by Matt from In the Air. Matt is an unbelievably cool kid. I didn't know you could get that cool in 10 short years on the planet--blows my mind. He is in the middle of a big project right now, interviewing 100 people for a book he's putting together. Check out his site and read a few interviews.

What were you doing 10 years ago?

Hmm...10 years ago this summer I was working at Bob's Greenhouse--watering, planting, weeding, and flirting (albeit, not very well) with Bob's older son. I'm not as good with plants as I used to be, but I'm much better at flirting.

What were you doing 1 year ago?

I was working at a breast cancer screening program for low-income women during the day and trying not to sweat to death in my un-air-conditioned (is that a word?) apartment at night.

5 snacks you enjoy:
salt and vinegar chips with good beer
chocolate milkshakes

5 songs that you know all the lyrics to:
Itsy-bitsy spider by someone who was really into spiders
What can I say, I used to babysit.

Thunder Road
by Bruce Springsteen
I have a bit of a crush on Bruce...The screen door slams, Mary's dress waves...

by Carole King
This was the first record I found when I dug out my mom's high school collection. I used to listen to it all the time...Once amid the soft silver sadness in the sky, There came a man of fortune; A drifter passing by...

Hot Legs
by Rod Stewart
I got into a little trouble when I taught my little sister this song and then she sang it (at church)...Who's that knocking on my door, it's gotta be a quarter to four...

by Blues Traveler
This song was stuck in my head the other day. It seemed sort of out of the blue because I haven't heard it since high school...Suck it in, Suck it in, Suck it in, If you're Rin Tin Tin or Anne Boleyn...

5 things you would do if you were a millionaire:
This is fun to think about because, right now, I literally have $33 to my name (and I have to spend that on gas).

The first thing I'd do is go to the grocery and buy a couple avocados. I've been craving them ever since the snacks question.

I'd buy formula for the waitress at Panera.
A little explanation...There is a very young waitress at the Panera Bread Cafe where I study, and she just had a baby. The other day, I saw her for the first time since she had her daughter; and I asked her how things were going. She told me that she works very long hours to try to provide for her, so she's not home enough to breastfeed anymore. Her daughter has an allergy, though, and can only drink special formula, which is extremely expensive. She worries about how she is going to pay for it and feels sort of stuck--working hard, but still really struggling to take care of her baby. I was having lunch with my mom, and I said, "You know, it's times like this when I really wish I was making some money..."

I'd go to the k.d. lang and Lyle Lovett concert.

A few people from school asked me to join them on a trip to Sudan over winter break. I'm not sure I'll be able to afford to go, but if I had a million, I'd definitely make the trip.

I'd buy some of the things on my little wish list--mostly books and music.

5 bad habits:
I dirty every dish in the house every single day. I'm not sure how, because I don't eat that much.
I forget people's birthdays.
I'm usually running 5 minutes late.
I leave my closet door open.
I chew on my pen when I'm studying (gross!).

5 things you like to do:
Read music, to other people, to the thoughts in my head.

5 things you would never wear again:
a fanny pack
pegged jeans
a sweater dress
short shorts
long hair

5 favorite toys:
I don't think I have 5.
Hmm...let's just say...

Thursday, June 21, 2007

That's all I needed

I called the apartment manager today...

"Hi, this is T from apartment 12. It's raining outside, and also in my closet."

"It is?"


"Like water is coming into your closet?"

"Like it sure is."

"That doesn't sound good!"

"Which is why I'm calling."


It quit raining, and I went to the probate court to fill out some paperwork and make a $66 donation (they call it a "filing fee").

Note left on the door by maintenance while I was gone: "Checked leak."

Well thanks. That's all I needed--just a bit of validation.
Just someone to come in and look at the place where the ceiling's about to fall onto my hot water tank...and then leave a little note.
I feel better now.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

A woman who could

My head is pounding. The wine I had for dinner may have something to do with it. I find myself at the end of an interesting day. I can't remember the last time I was a frustrated as I have been today. But, I laughed harder than I have in a long time, too.

On March 23, 2006, I left the ex. I had been with him since I was 18--my entire young adult life. I had no idea what I was in for when I left. If I had, I would have packed smarter. When I look back at the woman I was when I hauled my clothes to Lolita's car on that Thursday afternoon, I almost don't recognize her.

A few days later, he pounded on the door of Lolita's apartment for 45 minutes while I called the police (who didn't come) and prayed he didn't shoot anyone. He eventually drove away, and Lolita and I ran to my car and headed for a safe place. Hours later, as I lay in a strange bed in a strange house, I thought, "Holy shit T...this is a fight for your life."

And so it began.

In the process, I learned more about my own strength, the strength of the one I call my God, and the strength of those who love me than I ever could have imagined. And, today, I realized that I have also learned to laugh. I can be frustrated and pissed and grateful all at once. I can haul my ass through the shit and then float in the joy. And I can do it all in the same day.

The woman who walked out of her house that Thursday afternoon...she couldn't do that. Somehow, in the fight, she became a woman who could.

Prince Charming

I think you better cut all that hair off
throw it out the window
climb down from that tower
flip the wicked witch the finger
ain't no use to wait for him to get you
he's out chasing his own demons
not like you can really blame him
you've got demons of your own

and I hate to be the one to tell you
cause it don't seem so romantic
but that's the way it really goes
and now you know

you're gonna have to be your own prince charming
gonna have to ride your own stallion
gonna have to find your own castle
gonna have to raise your own sail
and there's gonna be a happy ending
but that's only the beginning...

If all goes as planned (and that would be a first), divorce at 9 am.

Oh..and the song...courtesy of Jim's Big Ego and my favorite Christine.
Because every girl needs an anthem.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

365 homosexual-inspired events

From an article by The Traditional Values Coalition (so named because The Psychotic Bigots Coalition was already trademarked):

There are also Gay Pride Week celebrations, a National Coming Out Week, “Gay Days” at Disneyland, Gay History Month, the National Transgender Day of Remembrance, “Safe School” events and more.

The way things are going, every day of every month will eventually be a homosexual-inspired event of some kind.

I told Lolita, "I, for one, can't wait to see how your people spice up President's Day. It's been lackluster for far too long."

"Yeah, I better get going," she said. "I've got a couple hundred events to plan."

Dark clouds are comin'...

like an army.
Soon the sky will open up and disarm me.

It's storming, which is nice, because I was looking for an excuse to lie around in my underwear all day. Everyone knows you can't be expected to dress yourself or get anything done in this weather.

Monday, June 18, 2007

You know who you are

This is for the woman at Old Navy who stood at the register for all of 3.2 seconds before she started bitching about how slowly the line was moving.

Yeah, you know who you are. And you know what? You don't have magical bitching powers. When you whine, things don't actual move any faster.

And why the hell should they? You are at Old Navy on a Monday night...buying gauchos. You expect us to believe that you've got anything better to do? Like as soon as you get through this line, you're going to go back to brokering peace in the Middle East?

Sunday, June 17, 2007

And then...the squirrel fell on me

Just got home from my parents. I spent 24 glorious hours with my family, mostly trying not to use the more potent swear words. I have a mouth like a trucker, and a fair amount of stuff happens at home that makes me want to say, What the fuck?

Although I may be thinking that, I try hard not to say the f-word around them. You know, out of something resembling respect. I was doing pretty well--hadn't said it once in over 23 hours--and then...the squirrel fell on me.

My parents and I were sitting on their deck under a huge oak tree when I spotted two squirrels. I said, "Look at those squirrels. One is chasing the other, and biting the ass!" We found this really entertaining. For about 7.4 seconds. Then, we went back to talking about whatever it was we were talking about.

While we weren't paying any attention, the ass-chewer chased his fellow yard rodent to the top of the huge tree and right off of a branch...onto my head. Squirrels aren't that heavy, but when you throw them from such a great height, they build some momentum on the way down and pack quite a punch.

Shocked and a little bruised, I yelled, "Fucking a--!" Just like that. Which is stupid, because of the two words in that phrase, it's not really the second one that needs to be abbreviated. But there it was. Twenty-three and a half hours in, and I let it slip.

Of course, I blame the f---ing squirrel.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Norah steals my breath and makes me miss those who feel the same

I just finished the book Self-Made Man by Norah Vincent. It was amazing--both the book and the experience of reading something that had nothing to do with medical school. Norah conducted a social experiment. She spent a year and a half living as a man named Ned. Ned joined a bowling league and a men's support group, visited strip clubs, dated women, spent weeks in a monastery, and worked as a salesman. Norah's writing about these experiences (and her subsequent mental breakdown) is utterly fascinating.

I studied masculinity a bit in college. I had an incredibly patient English professor, Dr. Cynthia Richards, who let me create an independent study course called The Image of the Warrior. I read about masculinity in the context of war, trying to understand what motivated men to fight and die for their countries and queens. It was definitely one of my more interesting academic pursuits.

I was drawn to Norah's book as a way to revisit the subject of masculinity, this time with someone else doing all the work. And, I have to say, her work is incredible. As I read, I was bowled over by her bravery--not the bravery it took to head to the woods for a weekend men's retreat (although that was quite the feat), but the bravery it took to write with such honesty. I am always inspired by people who in talking about experiences can admit to seeing and feeling things they did not expect to see and feel. That is nothing if not brave.

One of my very favorite moments in the book came as Norah was revealing her true identity to a monk with whom Ned had been cloistered. The monk said that he had suspected that Ned was gay. He said, "Well, your mannerisms are pretty effeminate."

Norah, who is generally regarded as a fairly masculine woman, said, "This was rich. As a woman, no one had ever accused me of being effeminate. Here was another of Ned's tricks. Dress as a man, and thereby emphasize the woman. Reveal the truth under the rubric of a lie."

The last line stole my breath. I know that's cliche, but it perfectly describes how I felt as I read it.

At moments like this, I miss the English department of my undergrad years. In those halls, I could find kindred spirits who would understand what it was like to have your breath stolen by someone's writing--what an incredibly delicious feeling that is. I certainly don't have those comrades in medical school. Reading Robbins Pathologic Basis of Disease doesn't provide those moments. And, sadly, medical students are not, generally speaking, the least bit interested in those books that do.

I want to discuss Norah's work--not with uninterested med students, but with her. I looked on the back cover, and it seems the publisher neglected to include her cell phone number. My dad works for the IRS, but always refuses to get people's personal contact information for me, even when I explain that I really just want to meet them for coffee. So...I am resigned to the fact that Norah and I will probably never get together at Starbucks to talk about her writing. Damn.

I also want to discuss the book with a man. I'm interested in his perspective on all of this. There are many things about which I want to ask, "Is that how this feels for you as well?" And this, again, makes me miss college. There, I could have taken this book to another of my favorite professors, Dr. Bob Davis, and said, "Hey, if you get a chance, read this over the weekend. I'll see you during your office hours on Monday to talk about it." He would have laughed at bit at the request, but I have no doubt he would have indulged me.

I'm actually thinking of sending him the book with a note asking him to read it and then get in touch with me so we can discuss.

Now, though, I'm off to continue reading. Up next...Carson McCullers' The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. This is a book that I'm really quite embarrassed to say I've never read. Tomorrow, I won't have to say that.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

We don't know what okay looks like yet

My sister is pregnant. And she's doing her best. She really is. She is young, and she thought she was doing the right thing when she told everyone who the father was.

But, as it turns out, her dates were a little bit way off.

Maury Povich came knocking. And people in a small town started talking.

And now...a girl who already had precious little understanding of her own worth feels like walking shit.

Her mother, the children's minister who's known far and wide for always having it together, doesn't feel much better. She called me from a church closet crying. She was supposed to be directing vacation bible school. Instead, she was pouring all of her Godly efforts into trying not to throw up. I never thought I was going to have to talk my mother into coming out of the closet. Apparently, there is a first for everything.

It's a double-edged sword, this whole being the oldest of five thing. But, in the end, I'm glad she feels like I'm the one she should call. I told her something my lovely roommate once told me when I was in a pickle.

It's going to be okay. We don't know what okay looks like yet, but it's going to be okay.

My mother has been repeating that for 3 days.

Demetri Martin made me laugh when he said...

Cotton balls is an example of something I would buy, but would not want to have as a nickname.

This is my friend Leo, and this is Eric, and this over here is Cotton Balls.

Cinnamon buns on the other hand... yeah, I would buy those and have that as a nickname.

Excuse me, are you Cinnamon Buns?

You bet your sweet ass I am.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The flip side

The boards exam is over.
Eight hours of testing...done.

"How'd it go?" you ask.
"It was hard," she says.
"When will you know how you did?" you ask.
"Six weeks," she says.

And she'll say more about other things after her nap.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Blogging hiatus

Catch ya on the flip side...of June 13th.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

My sister just called

She's pregnant.
Anyone know where I can get a onesie that says I believe in the separation of church and state?
Cause that would just be too cute.

In all seriousness, though, I have very mixed feelings about this news.
But, I truly look forward to watching my sister rise to this occasion with dignity and grace.
(Dignity and grace may not mean much coming from a woman whose last post was a novella about gas, but for whatever it's worth...)

The Ass Gas Attack of '07

This week, my apartment has smelled. Bad. Like gas. Not furnace gas. Ass gas. When I walked in the other day, I half expected to find some lactose intolerant intruder lying in wait. I've spent most of the week bitching about the smell to the cat. I suspected she was the source, as she has decided that litter boxes are for losers. I should probably clarify here--she still pees in there. Well, in there or in Lolita's shower. Even that is easy enough to clean, what with the drain and all. Plus, it's not my shower. She poops on the carpet, though. Picks a fresh spot every day and just squats. So, needless to say, I thought that perhaps some of the odor could be attributed to the cat--the one who's being paid by the guys at Stanley Steamer to torture me.

Today, however, I found the real source of the smell. It's our damn dishwasher. We never use the thing. We don't own enough dishes to fill it, so what's the point? Today, though, six days into what shall henceforth be known as The Ass Gas Attack of '07 (seriously, check the Weather Channel--that's what they're calling it), I found the odor in the dishwasher. Frankly, I'm kind of surprised it took me six days. My nose is the size of west Texas. Apparently, it's more ornamental than functional. Anyway, there was some collection of brown, nasty, ass gas smelling water in the bottom of the dishwasher. I have no idea how it got there. I'm sure it will be back. But, at the moment, it's gone (nothing a roll of paper towels and some Tilex can't fix).

Now, however, my apartment smells like shit. Again, not the cat. It cooled off a bit today, and I got to thinking, "What would Al Gore do?" The answer, of course, is travel the talk show circuit to tell the world he probably maybe definitely doesn't think he's running for president. But, I don't have time for all that (I have studying to do!), so I decided I'd just turn off my A/C and open the windows.

You know that fresh outdoor air you've heard about? Well, that's a crock of shit. Literally, a crock of shit. The mulch business two doors down has decided to expand--they are now entremanures. Wafting through my windows it's the smell of animal feces. It has been ripening in the sun all week, and the sweet summer breeze is now carrying it right into my living room.

Then, as if that weren't enough, Darwin's Enigma (the nickname Lolita has given to the numb-nuts next door who spend every waking moment proving that natural selection doesn't visit here) started racing around their swamp land (that would be their disgusting, flooded, West Nile virus nirvana of a backyard) on their four-wheelers. So, yeah, now I'm back to the smell of ass gas. Asses filling my apartment with gas.

So...wanna come over? We'll barbecue!

Friday, June 1, 2007


So, it's been about a week since I left the beach and returned home. I miss it. Lots. Mostly, I miss the perspective the huge ocean provided. It showed me that I was just a small piece of something much larger and more powerful. It gave me clarity and focus. It reminded me that my hours of studying were all just work at being the best small piece that I can be.

I seem to have lost some of that perspective now that I've returned home. The waves I have now are mostly panic and fatigue.