Monday, December 21, 2009


Many things are happening at once. Christmas, New Year's, trips to Maryland and New Jersey, and trial advocacy starting on Sunday, January 3. Fantastic!

Seriously though, I am pretty happy to see 2009 draw to a close. A lot of good things have happened, certainly, and I am definitely grateful for them; but other, not-so-good things have happened as well and I think the fresh start that comes with a new year and a new decade will do everyone a bit of good.

In other news, Honeycomb and Lucky are still adorable, still a lot of work. I might be getting a little bit of a cold (thanks to T., whose cold relapsed with the hideous weather that descended on the East Coast this past weekend--but I don't mind your germs, love you!). And I can't wait for Christmas (but what else is new).

Happy end of the year, everyone! Here's to a healthy, safe, happy holidays and a brilliant start to a brilliant year. It's our time!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The internal debate

On Wednesday, I went to the gym for a thirty-minute run (Day 2, Week 9 of C25K if anyone is interested). It was fine and I actually did complete the run. But for some reason--maybe I'd had a big lunch, or was wearing pants that were too tight, or something--I started to get a stitch about four minutes in. usually I can make them go away if I regulate my breathing. But this time, it just stayed, not a bad stitch or unbearable, but definitely uncomfortable.

About eight minutes in, once I realized that it wasn't going away, I told myself that I would stop after ten minutes, because I didn't want to run uncomfortably. I'll just include a (practically verbatim) transcript of the conversation I had with myself for the rest of the run:

8 mins: OK, just stop at 10. Then you've run ten minutes, almost a mile, you can go home and drink water and lie down.

9 mins: Almost there. Almost to 10.'ve only run three quarters of a mile. At least run a mile. It'll be just to 12 or 13 or so.

13 mins: OK, yay, mile run. Let's stop now. But the guy next to me has been running like a maniac for who knows how long. And that girl on the other side is still going. I can't just stop after one mile, they're going to think I'm lame. And I mean, I'm still running, even with the stitch. Maybe just go to 15 minutes.

15 mins: Well, now the run is half over. It's stupid to stop unless I really feel like I need to. Maybe run to 20 minutes. 20 minutes sounds more respectable than 15 minutes.

20 mins: Yes! The girl! She left! I ran longer than her! I can stop now! But maniac guy is still going strong and...wait, he just stepped the speed up! OK, I have to go at least a little more.

25 mins: There are only 5 mins left. You might as well finish the thirty minutes.

28 mins: I don't think I can do this. I think I need to stop. But only 2 minutes left! Come on. It's just 2 minutes.

29 mins: How has it only been one minute since I looked down at my feet and then back up at the timer? I think that time is slowing.

29 mins, 30 secs: HOW do I still have 30 seconds left?

29 mins, 52 secs: come ON, come ON, come ON, COME ON!


Sometimes people tell me that they are bored when they run. I, on the other hand, am fully equipped to have a very detailed, argumentative internal dialogue. So yeah, boredom isn't so much the problem.

Last thirty minute run is today. Let's see if I can figure out any more persuasive things to tell myself when I have only fifteen seconds left.

Sunday, December 06, 2009


...of Specifis Studiara Undergraduatum, or the studying undergraduate.

Studying in the undergraduate library has its benefits (close parking on nights and weekends, large tables with multiple outlets, good lighting, easily accessible bathrooms and water fountains) and its drawbacks (tons of undergrads, strange smells floating around, the inevitable butt-ache that afflicts anyone choosing to sit on a library chair for longer than an hour). Usually the benefits are enough to make me feel like it's worth it to study there. I am also unusually productive when surrounded by people reading novels and practicing in foreign language grammar workbooks (no hate, trust me, I was once one of you and I wish I could be again--sorta).

However, I feel like these Undergraduatum are both careless and inconsiderate, perhaps as unavoidable side-effects to being carefree and in college. When I was searching for a table I saw no less then five that were being "held" by a handful of papers and a lonely water-bottle. I saw one girl who was napping in her (four seater) booth. And I saw a bazillion of them giggling and sharing video clips on computers and making jokes.

Don't get me wrong. I understand that you sometimes have to get up and go to the bathroom, requiring you to leave all your crap splayed out on a table that someone else could use. That's fine. But don't leave your things for over an hour--that's just mean and selfish. Obviously you don't care very much about studying in the library if you are not even in the library. So please, allow others who need your space to use it.

Secondly, I also sympathize with people who might feel so sleepy that they need to put their heads down for a catnap. That's fine, and I am guilty of it myself. But twenty minutes of dozing is one thing; an hour and a half of hard sleeping in a space meant for four people is another. You go to school here. You (most likely) have a bed. Use it and let me sit in your booth.

Finally, I commend those who can socialize and study effectively. I also understand how that Funny or Die clip could be the most hilarious thing you've seen all afternoon; that these boots about to sell out on Zappos require trusted girlfriend input; and that this dirty knock knock joke simply must (must!) be shared. So please, share it elsewhere.

Phew. Now that I've purged myself of all my bitterness, I will take a few seconds to note that I eventually did get a table and am wearing headphones. So please, undergrads. Carry on. As long as I can get into my groove, I have no quibble with you or that Modern Cinema paper you need to write. However, if you do have any spontaneous tax knowledge, specifically pertaining to capital expenditures, please don't hesitate to share it with me. Thanks.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

It's what everyone does

So now I'm going to do it. My Christmas wish list for this year, in no particular order:

For us to stay healthy: my family, friends and I have managed to stay (for the most part) relatively healthy, and I have seen how illness and injury can cause a host of other problems. I would like to say thanks for keeping us strong and hope that we'll be able to stay that way.

For Patty Griffin to sell more albums: I have only recently discovered Patty Griffin, but upon doing more research I learned that, while incredibly talented, has never been a real chart-climber, I would like for her to experience a measure of the success she really deserves. I know she's probably too much of a real artist to gauge herself by how others receive her; but at the same time, if she makes more money, she can make more music. So really, this is a selfish wish.

For stability: I would like to avoid the old Chinese curse ("May you live in interesting times") and ask that my family, friends and I be able to rock along in our little boats, until such time as we are prepared to take what the world wants to throw at us.

To find a place to settle: I have not yet figured out my post-graduate situation, and the sooner I do, the better I will feel. So please, Santa, if you could somehow work out some administrative/bureaucratic changes in the state I'm shooting for, that would be great. Thanks.

These are my real wishes. However, since I feel like many of these have to do more with luck and self-help than anything else, let's just toss in the material things I would like as well.

--Flaming Red by Patty Griffin.
--A lip balm that will keep me from getting chapped.
--A running watch/heart-meter/calorie counter that I can use when I go to the gym.
--A swishy winter skirt.
--A DVD copy of Star Trek.
--Under the Dome, by Stephen King.

T., take note! ;)