Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Carpet, Honor, Europe




That title, in a nutshell, is why I've been absent from these hallowed halls the past 14 days -- the inherent duality of the universe has been completely and utterly evident in that space of breathing and blood flow that I occupy, trapping me inside an existential yin-yang constructed of both ouchy mountains and comfy clouds.

Carpet

A fortnight ago, my bathroom toilet decided to plot its revenge for my continual assaults and quietly overflow while I was at work. Of course I didn't discover it until several hours later, so I returned home not only to my usual floor-full of already-stained, beige, tract housing carpet, but with the added bonus of squishy sound effects, and after a few days, unbearable stank. All the carpet in the house had to be pulled up and industrial fans had to run for about a week to dry the place out. I suppose it's not so bad. I wanted laminate anyway.

Honor

Though nominated last year, this year, I was elected Teacher of the Year for my particular school by my peers. I will now have to write an essay and move on to the district-wide competition (which reminds me of winning the 4th grade spelling bee). The prize at this level? Unparallelled daily congratulation at work, and free lunch with my boss. Woot.

Europe

Some money came in. The last few times that happened, I just paid off credit card debt. This time, I decided to go to Europe with it, and to go alone. I leave tomorrow for London and will also ride the Eurostar (Chunnel) train to Paris (under the ocean!!) and spend a day there. Let's hope my high school language skillz don't fail me: "Ou est le salle de bain, s'il vous plait?"

Other than my 2 hour jaunt into Mexico this past summer, this will be my only time to have left the warm, comforting shores of Mother America. I'm scared and somewhat anxious, but excited to realize something I've been dreaming of for the past 25 years or so.
I have already been instructed not to involve myself in any international political affairs while I'm there.

I have a plethora of mixed feelings: guilt because I'm going and everyone else I know wants to go but can't afford it, fear that I'll be hated as a typical fat American or forget all the French I know or someone will look askance at me on the plane (for 7 hours) because I might take up an extra inch or two in the seat, that I'll accidentally lapse into my "really good" British accent... But beyond all that, I know it will be smashing. I idolize the British for their steadfastness and snobbery and wit and class, and I respect the French for being the existential, intellectual, artistic folk they are, even in the face of hatred from the most good-looking, popular nation on Earth. I expect to get a better view of who we are by walking among those who aren't us.


Every time I leave Texas and visit other places, I enjoy it, but I appreciate Dallas all the more. So I know I'll be glad while I'm gone, and gladder when I get home. Pray I don't exceed TSA suitcase limits for Mr. Kipling's and tea.
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“I'm from a little place called England ... We used to run the world before you.” -- Ricky Gervais

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Forty Minutes to GF

Sometimes, I entertain random messaging on the interwebs. Sure, I know it's foolish but I sometimes do. I think it has something to do with ongoing research about what percentage of the human race has anything interesting to say. By current estimates, data approaches approximately 1.2%. And you, of course.

The other night I was bantering boringly with some random jackass. The conversation wasn't moving along very swimmingly at all. He kept quizzing me about general life info: what do I do, kids, family, hobbies, sorry your parents are dead, blah, blah, etc.

Then after about 40 drawn out moments, in which I was giving halfass answers and chatting with two other (interesting) people, reading Wikipedia or some such at the same time, he says, "So do you want to be my gf?"

Hmm. GF. Garden Funder? Grappling Fondue? Gargoyle Foot?

He also refused to send any pics at first, asking, "Is my appearance all that important to you?" and then when he did, it looked like he'd haphazardly clipped 3 different shots from the Abercrombie catalog.

I am now befuddled. Should I be this man's Gesso Furnace?

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There's always something to write about. If there's not then you need to live life more aggressively.
-- Min Kim, Better Blogging Brainstorming, SXSW 2006

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Thought Amblings

Do you ever just come home from toil and go and lie down, not sleeping nor waking?

"Who has time?" you may ask.

I don't have time either, but I do it anyway. Always have. It's a need, sort of.

When I do this, odd stuff floats to the surface of my consciousness.

Just now, this thought emerged slowly from the unformed ether:

"If I die tomorrow, I will at least know this about myself:"

A few seconds later, a rough-edged, unvarnished truth emerged:

"I live more in the world of ideas than in the real world."


It's true, I say.

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"Say hello." -- Deep Dish (Angello & Ingrosso remix)

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Quick Music Geekly Note for a Sunday Night


I don't get Lou Reed.

By "don't get" I mean I don't understand what the big deal is about him and why he's considered so influential when the majority of folk have only ever heard one song. With a lot of crusty, bleak, grim artists (see Pink Floyd), maybe I don't like their stuff but I get it, I fathom their influence; however, with Reed, no. Just no.

I'd rather listen to Skid Row's "I Remember You" and be called a musical cretin than sit through just one more time of "Walk on the Wild Side." Ugh. Sebastian Bach up.


If you do get him, please explain.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Threesome

When at Starbucks, I have a moral, jingoistic, and/or Texan instinctual thing going in which I refuse to order in Italian, as posted on and imposed by their menu. I also don't order a latte, or half-caff anything. I just say "a large coffee with cream and Equal." The other day when I did this, I actually had to explain what I meant by large:

Baristo: "You mean venti?"
Me: "Uhmm, yes. ::thinking to self:: "We're still speaking English. You are officially brainwashed, you clueless cog in the international corporate machine, you."

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Being part of a huge, lumbering, mammoth, inefficient school district, I occasionally have to attend trainings which seem virtually pointless. I had to do this recently. While there, someone corrected my drawing of a multiplication array.

I drew this:
3 X 5

. . .
. . .
. . .
. . .
. . .

Her contention was that I should've drawn this:

3 X 5
. . . . .
. . . . .
. . . . .

My assertion is that, due to multiplication's commutative property, IT DOESN'T FUCKING MATTER. So she pointed it out, and I kind of just went, "Yeah." Immediately afterward, I had a sinking sensation that because this training will have other sessions and I will most certainly encounter this woman later on, that this will become a Larry David-like moment, and that a second of rudeness will punish me on and on in the not-so-distant future. Which is why I love Curb Your Enthusiasm so damn much -- I feel a certain solidarity with Larry David's fictional? self.

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Physical bodies are gross... everyone has a thoracic duct, an alimentary canal. We are compelled to eat the dead flesh of other formerly living things to survive. It just gets gross if I think too much about it. Hence the nature of this blog -- overthinking things that are unchangeable and pointless to think of even in the first place.

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[Apologies to LBB for jumping his train a bit; however, none of these merited a full posting, I didn't think.]
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