and, while matt is whooping it up in california over spring break, i will be home, hanging out with curtis, anita, mike, doug(?), jaclyn(?) and others and making wonderful, awesome cookies. hopefully, curtis and i will be able to churn out a delicious batch of these babies .. i liberated the recipe for them (among others) from this blog by joseph hall (i hope he doesn't mind!). his recipe repertoire also includes such goodies as ubuntu cookies and tux cookies.
hopefully they'll turn out well!

if we're really creative, maybe we can conjure up some gaiman-inspired cookies. i'd love to make a sandman dessert. *gringrin*

"the city she loves me"

before i run off to a speech at the library about *glee* comic books, i wanted to post a little blog goodness. first of all, let me mention that i'm having a great day: really busy, but good. this morning started well with coffee and class and a great discussion with kelly innes (prof = awesome) about jouissance and epiphany (which i brought up a few weeks ago and which he wanted to talk more about). tomorrow i'm going to meet him at saint's cafe (near panera) to discuss my paper due tuesday. he's holding office hours in a cafe. sweet!
in any case, talked with him, which is always awesome because he's really smart and has really interesting views. well, then i went back to my room to do the homework for him that i'd forgotten (turned into a cool reading response comparing mansfield's "marriage a la mode" to hogarth's "marriage a-la-mode" .. i thought it was ironic, the same titles, and then i got interested and found a whole bunch of fascinating parallels. yes!
then i ran off to italian and had a good class where i understood all the concepts and enjoyed myself immensely and after which i went to speak with my advisor. actually, i forgot what i wanted to talk with her about, so i ended up just saying hi and then leaving to go turn in my writing sample for janet lyon (the english honors advisor who holds my future in her hands). i turned in one of my better papers: the one i wrote about ethan frome in which i took a lacanian interpretation. i had a great time writing that one. yay!
so, my day will be moving forward in a few minutes as i hasten away to the library and, from there, make my way to work until 9:30. after that, i still have to read cantos 5&6 of book 1 of "the faerie queene" for doc rissell and i really want to work on this paper for kelly (especially since i'm going to talk with him about it tomorrow).

so, yeah.. that's my day. all 37 hours of it. *grin*


not only long-winded, but also geographically disabled (i.e. lost)

today i stumbled across a website that i used to frequent in high school: rumandmonkey.com, home to silly tests (always involving obliteration of a small village) and liberal blog-goodness from before the time it became seriously cool to blog on a regular basis.

according to their "world extremity" test..
I am Challenger Deep!
Which Extremity of the World Are You?
From the towering colossi at Rum and Monkey.

..does that mean i'm deep?

today, i was quite deep... ly lost in the library. i thought, "oh, it'll be nice to go read in a quiet corner of the stacks" well.. quiet corner found, reading finished, i decided to leave the stacks. finding entrances to the stacks is, apparently, infinitely easier than finding exits. they seem designed to trap and hold the innocent reader looking for merely a quiet spot on a heartily populated campus.
of course, after finally escaping their clutches, i decided i needed to return to the depths to find some fascinating scholarship comparing dante and joyce.. how could i pass that up!? so, i went back down and, lo and behold, could not find the book i was looking for. i followed the numbers, found the ones near it, was surrounded by works about joyce.. yet could not find the one book i was looking for.. or a helpful librarian in the stacks.. or, again, an exit by which to leave the godforsaken cramped, barely space.
what joy i will have while working on my thesis (should i be accepted).. i'll basically live in the stacks while researching obscure scholars commenting on less-obscure writers. oh, i love it!

i will surely come more prepared for spelunking the next time i visit the library: backpack and library-safe mug are definitely coming along for my next excursion into that cursed den of literary sloth.. the stacks.
(and then i had a great time checking out the graphic novel display in the non-stacks area of the library and one of the galleries in the HUB which was displaying weird art about healing. quite cool, go see if you can).


maybe i am a little long winded..

as my friends begin to move on with their lives i, once again, find myself feeling sort of left behind. the same thing happened in high school: i was a sophomore and all my senior friends left to go to college, moved on with their lives, lost touch with me (to a greater or lesser degree).
when i first started college, i worried that i wouldn't make fast friends, that i'd just sort of solo my way through and feel lonely and lousy pretty much all the time. while that has been true a little (i haven't made boatloads of new friends), i've cultivated the strong friendships that i developed while in high school and i feel like i'm approaching a new awareness of myself and my peers through my lonely excursions.. i feel as if my alone time has given me time to expose my own thoughts on things that i would otherwise never have encountered.
this separation from matt is killing me -- i would love to be living with him right now.. come home to him smiling after classes, prepare dinner for the two of us while he works on some class stuff, plots out a new film. i would love for him to cook us dinner while i read aloud to him. i would read him catherine mansfield, in keeping with my newfound adoration of her beautiful writing. her words are fresh and as beautiful as woolf's but without all the 2-page sentences. she is easily as delightfully ambiguous though -- reading her is like puzzling through a challenging mystery: i have to connect each detail to the next and cultivate a real sense of understanding before i can determine the thrust of the story. i'm enjoying every word and every work.

i went to the honors advisor today: she basically told me that, in order to graduate with honors over the next three semesters, i'll have no social life and i will spend what little "freetime" i have outside of my intense classes holed up in the archives of the library gorging on literary criticism and scholarship. i'm delighted! it'll be a refreshing change of pace -- i'll feel like i'm actually contributing a body of scholarly work, not just leaching off it for my own deeds. it'll be a beautiful scenario of give-and-take, if i can qualify for the honors program, that is. otherwise, i'll not write a serious thesis until grad/ph.d work.

i've downloaded a recommended reading least from stanford's ph.d program: i intend to pursue it over this coming summer and during my teaching period in japan. it should be quite interesting to work on austen, thackeray, and milton while working at a contemporary bank and while teaching children the basics of english communication. i'll be spelling words in ways that were conventional hundreds of years ago, speaking in literary tongues archaic and delicious. yum!

now, onto spenser and his lovely "faerie queene" before i retire to my junk-covered bed.


and the last man standing..

i'm pretty sure they all sat down. i couldn't see anyone standing on the floor of the BJC after they said the dancers could sit - just a bunch of relieved, sore, possibly delirious kids really happy to be off their feet.

the number alone, though.. that's enough to need a seat for. $5.2 million, a whole million over last year's number... crikey!

i went (slightly drunk) on saturday night (i sobered pretty quickly) and was kinda bored.. i was tired and nobody seemed to have much spirit. the stands were barren and the floor was not the inspiring sight i excepted. on sunday afternoon, though, i went around 3:30 for the numbers and the entire building was packed, floor to ceiling (with a few exceptions, of course). all the dancers were (amazingly) peppy and the whole crowd was into it. everyone did (or attempted) to do the line dance and, i think, that was the most moving part of it all -- seeing thousands of people all waving their arms and chanting in time. there was a primitive, tribal feeling of .. goodwill. it was lovely and unexpected.

i loved the colors. it was my first THON and i didn't really know what to expect, but it certainly wasn't a sea of neon colors competing, in friendly fashion, to outshine the rest. had everyone been much less tired, i would have expected crowd surfing. i couldn't see the floor.
the children were wonderful.. mingling in the chromatically separated groups, hitching shoulder rides and dancing like shining maniacs -- they were beautiful and uninhibited. not to be didactic, but.. we could probably all learn something from the little boys on stage who looked completely foolish, but were having so much fun. they shone.

next year, i hope to get more actively involved.. something so moving and so good.. not something i want to pass up.

and, on an entirely unrelated note, i'm getting a pair of these tights in emerald (i wish i could snag one of the models with the tights.. agh!) i expect everyone to coo and admire when i wear them. please don't let me down!


"raise your glass high"

so, i'm in a pretty good mood right now.

over the weekend, i raised ~$500 for THON (working at lion line.. calling up those bitches.. For The Kids!!).

so, i feel like i've done a good thing (and i also got paid to do it.. yess!).
i'm headed off now to watch the numbers go up for the end of the dance. i'm interested in seeing how many dancers stay on their feet for the last two hours after the official dancing is over - in apparent homage to previous dances and past dancers.
i hope a lot of the kids are there. and that i can find a place where i can actually see through what i expect will be *masses* of people. all of them completely insane.


i am back to save the universe

so, talked to alison today about honors college stuff -- definitely going to ask the advisor if it's possible for me to get in and whether she thinks there'll be a decent amount (read: any) honors courses offered next summer when i'll be finishing my degree.

i planned out the basic idea for my next three semesters, as per my understanding of the degree audit and credit system. here goes:

Fall '07:
  • awesome 300-400 level english
  • awesome 300-400 level english
  • lab science (maybe astronomy?)
  • humanity class (cross-listed with US cultures class)
  • italian 2
-- that should equal 17 credits (italian = 4 credits, science w/ lab = 4 credits)

Spring '08:
  • awesome english thesis class
  • lousy gen. ed. english 202B
  • gen. ed science (hopefully geosci something)
  • math of some sort (yikes! hopefully philosophy of math)
  • italian 3
-- that should equal 16 credits (italian = 4, everything else 3)

Summer '08:
  • awesome english 300-400 level
  • other things to fill up schedule
  • other things
  • other things
  • other things
-- that needs to be 15 credits so.. a schedule mostly full of deliciously easy and/or interesting classes while working long hours at some hopefully decent paying job.

so, that's the schedule i'm hoping to pursue, tentatively. will it work out? i'm hoping. really hoping.. i don't like the idea of spending the summer away from home, but ..i don't know where matt will be (probably california), anyway, and he's the person i spend most time with at home. while i'll miss gramma and all my friends, i don't really spend that much time with friends while i'm at home and i'll be 21 up here and hopefully surrounded by at least one or two people with whom i can enjoy a legal adult beverage. *grin*

so, here's hoping and leaving off the blogging so that i can get some homework done before going in to work and making money .. For the Kids! (lion line is concentrating all this weekend, starting last night, on raising money for THON and every dollar i bring in tonight will be for the kids.. which i think is better than the normal dull cases and dry donations that people normally give to nominally support "academics" .. this means so much more).


"i'm staring at the asphalt wondering what's buried underneath"

what lives under roads? i remember being little and killing weeds creeping out through cracks in the driveway. i poured vinegar on them and they would shrivel sadly. it always made me sad to kill these brave little creatures, to squash their little photosynthetic lives. they always conjured up fun imaginative stories of heroic ent-beings who would swoop in (or clamber up, as the case may be) in picturesque style, capture the "bad guys," rescue the "helpless maiden" (that'd be me), and, finally, repave the driveway so that nothing else could come up to disrupt their new conquest. they would tolerate no opposition.

on a less innocently childlike note, i ignored my morning english class today to tentatively plan out my next (and last) three semesters. apparently, to finish all my degree requirements, i need only 35 more credits. to qualify for a liberal arts degree, though, i need to complete 123 credits (i've got 75 after this semester) so i need to finish 48 more credits before i can graduate. so.. that leaves me with 13 credits with which i can do pretty much anything. so, instead of thinking "easy classes, easy a's, easy GPA improvement" i'm thinking "ooh, minor in classical and mediterranean studies!" it would be easier for me to get a minor in italian, though since i'll already have 12 credits completed in the language to work with (only 21 credits to a a language minor, i believe).

so, i'll finish the bulk of my coursework in the next two semesters (fall '07 and spring '08) and then finish up anything else and take "fun" courses as much as i can in summer '08. hopefully i will be able to do the commencement exercises with the spring graduation so that i can have a nice ceremony with all the pomp and circumstance that my high school graduation was pretty free of. (i'm still pissed at mom for not taking any photos. wtf, mom?).

in other news, i'm falling behind a little in my hard english (456 - british modernism) class, but i should be able to catch up pretty easily. just need to keep plowing through another hundred or so pages of conrad while balancing all my other books, classes, and obligations.

right now, though, i need to grab an apple and catch the bus before i'm late for work. lion line... do i love you or do i loathe you? i've been working there a little over two weeks now, i guess (including training) and so far i haven't found it too bad, just a little discouraging at times. it pays $6.50/hour and you only need to work three 3-hour shifts every week. if you work more shifts, you make more money (read: get raises) and if you do certain excelling things during your shifts, you get more money. i love the flexible schedule: i make my own schedule and pick my own shifts. i can change a shift as late as 11.59pm the night before the shift and i'm surrounded by friendly people. it's an easy job and i can do simple homework tasks while doing it. ::shrug:: it's work, but not demanding and i get to sit while doing it. they also have free hot chocolate. that's a biiiiig draw. like you wouldn't believe. oh, and the fact that it raises money for university programs.. not a detractor. *grin* it also seems like a pretty good resume builder: "i raised $10,000 for scholarships at PSU" .. werd.


well, now that i'm exhausted and have put off sleep for too long, i'll stop putting off posting .. good deal, eh?
well, it's late and i've had an.. interesting day. last night, i played in the snow for a long time, had a good time with alison and walked around after playing a rollicking several minutes of snow soccer. it was nice to just walk in the freezing cold watching other people sledding and feeling cozy in my coat and two pairs of pants.
this morning, of course, i woke up terribly sore (when did i get so old?) and dreading the day ahead.. then i found out we didn't have classes. yess! so, i went back to bed. yay, sleeping. i didn't wake up until matt called me at 12:50 to wish me a happy valentine's day and tell me sweet things. what a good boy. *smile*
i called anita and went over to bake some cookies with her and went to alison's after that for knitting lessons. i started an adorable hat and would provide pictures except for the lack of camera and the fact that i tore out the hat because it had so many ugly mistakes. in fact, i "frogged" it. apparently, the knitting community has a whole host of adorable and/or fitting jargon terms to make knitting even more awesome than it already is.
so, even though classes were canceled, alison and i had to walk together to our class because the prof. wasn't nice enough to cancel it (it runs from 3.30 to 6.30 and classes were only canceled until 5). even though it was a pain to get there and we didn't really want to go, it was a pretty good class. al and i both knitted quietly while still actively participating in the discussion. it was nice to be in such a small class, again: of the 30-40 kids in the class, only about 10 of us showed up. it was nice and cozy.
so, after class, i came back, fed, and went to the anime club meeting.. it was going to be pretty sweet because i hadn't gone in a while and i missed the atmosphere of nutty people. well, before we got there, a fraternity had been hosting a bear-building activity and wanted us to participate before they left.. well, i agreed and made an adorable fat lion holding a rose. he's soooo cute and i went over to put it in a box and then they told me how much it cost. well.. that was nice.. considering they had no signs advertising a cost and hadn't mentioned price whatsoever until that point. of course, i didn't have any money on me and, as it was $20, i didn't want to buy it, anyway. had they told me it would've cost me.. i wouldn't have done it in the first place. so, anita ended up paying for it (i would've rather not paid for it and had them just disassemble the monster, but whatever) and i feel really mad about the whole thing. now, i owe anita $20 for a lion i wouldn't have bought in a store (and have no one really to give it to) and i feel so angry that those boys had me make this thing and then decided to tell me i had to pay for it. nothing said money. i feel so .. swindled, like it was a big con to get me to "fall in love" with this animal and then pay them for it.
the only mitigating factor involved is that the proceeds probably went to charity (likely THON), so i don't feel as bad, but.. c'mon.. $20 for a bear/lion thing? i wouldn't pay that and i really can't afford it. i feel cheated and angry and helpless.
it really ruined my day.

on a brighter note, i think i'll donate plasma when i get a chance (they pay you ~$25 per donation and you can donate 2x/week).. it seems like a good thing. basically, you give them a part of your blood (so it shouldn't be as exhausting as giving whole blood) and it takes a while (two hours, i think). the only real drawback is the amount of time (which isn't that bad since i can read during it), but it might also hurt. i don't want hurting! i figure i'll drop in some day when i have some free time and see how it all works. can't hurt to find out, right?
if i do donate plasma, though.. i'll be able to put that money right into my wallet just a sort of gift to myself. yarn money, perhaps? subsidizing for matthew's airplane tickets to come visit me? unfortunately, after reading some documentation on it, i realize that i can't donate until the end of march because i recently gave blood. boooo.

ugh, too tired to write more. must sleep. to bed, to bed, and hopefully to a brighter tomorrow.