I'm easing into the day today because I'm effing exhausted.Maybe it's because my sleep schedule has been off? I don't know. Anyway, still too tired to work at the moment, so I'm reading Savage Love archives. And then I run across this one. Read it. Read it. It's worth it, I swear.
The first letter makes me wonder at what point would he dump this dude? When he starts stealing money from him? When he tries to seduce a family member? Awful. And Dan Savage says that 1-2% of people have had sexual contact with an animal. Um, what??? Consider this: do you have 100 facebook friends? Think about it. Um, what???
Endnote, for those of you who don't know, is a bibliographic database that not only stores all your scientific papers so you are able to search through them, but also automatically creates your References Cited list.
can link your pdf of the paper to the entry in the database
makes References Cited much easier
you no longer lose a paper that you read years ago
incredible tech support. I mean incredible. You can call them during business hours and get a person within a minute. They are very friendly and capable. It's almost unbelievable these days.
price - $100 for the student version (and you still get the tech support!)
instruction manual is very good and not too long
it takes a bit of time to set up
you sound like a dork when raving about it
The verdict? Love it! It does what it says without weirdo bugs, but the best part is they make it easy to use with the living, breathing, easy to reach tech support and well-written instruction manual. Not so easy to come by these days for a c-note.
I should do more tech reviews of software. Cause some of it, some of it, I am seriously in love with.
Without further ado, I present the first edition of the The Single Life Tellin' you what to do Tuesdays, which might be a new fun feature, or it might just be a conversation between Halterwhip and myself that I'm subjecting you all to. You decide.
OK, here is my friend's problem. She started dating this guy, and he's really great blah blah. But he recently returned from the Peace Corps in Jamaica, and still has some emotional attachment to a woman there. My friend thinks she's falling for this guy, but is afraid he's still hung up on Jamaica lady. WHAT SHOULD SHE DO?!?!? (hm maybe his is a committmentphobe.)
Not exactly Dan Savage material, but we're trying.
Thanks in advance,
Well "HW", whoever you are (wink, wink), your "friend" may not like this advice, but here it goes. She thinks she's falling for him but is worried he will not be able to do the same. We're not starting this off with any slow pitches, are we? This is pretty much the relationship issue. While I don't have enough information to diagnose commitmentphobia, or the skills, if you ask one particular diagnosee (time will tell!), it is quite possible that he is not available to get emotionally attached to said friend.
Unfortunately I don't have any cookie-cutter, figure him out without asking him advice. There are some people who believe that men get over one woman by meeting the next, and there are others who believe that men take longer in general to get over heartbreak. Who's right? I don't know, but I'm going to guess each man is different. Like snowflakes.
My advice? Drum roll, please!... She should talk to him. I know this is lame, boring, Mom advice, but it's pretty much the way to go. And it will be scary, yes. But in what world do you think you can get romantically involved with someone and not have to confront some (read: a lot) of fear? That's what it's about. If it's not scary, then it's not big enough to waste your time.
I'm not saying she needs to confess her feelings. I'm just saying she needs to talk to him about what each of them wants from a relationship at this point in their lives and what each of them can give. She could say something like this... "I wonder if you are over Jamaica lady. I am interested in a full, mature relationship and that can't happen if you're not emotionally available because you're not over someone else. It's fine if you aren't, I just need to be fair to myself."
Then, and this is important, she needs to believe what he tells her. None of this, "but once he realizes how great we are together then he'll change his mind." That is called De.Ni.Al, and it will only waste her time and lead to heartbreak. If you want an emotional attachment from a man, and he's only willing to date casually, guess what? You'll settle for casual dating, all the while hoping his feelings will change, and you'll get deeper and deeper into it. And there's pretty much nowhere good that this will lead. Trust me, I've done it.
Just to cover our bases, I'll share the greatest man advice ever: If he wants to be with you, he will make that very clear. You won't need to play your hand with perfect strategy. The question then becomes, and you need to ask yourself this every day, is he the right person for me?
Also, she should make sure he's lost the Jamaica braids...
(All that money and so many bad choices...)
Tough love, people, tough love.
And no Halterwhip, that was not Dan Savage material. I didn't see mention of Santorum anywhere. And for that I'm not sure if I'm disappointed or grateful.
Now that I rocked that question, got any more? Post them in a comment here.
Would you consider adding an advice column aspect to your blog? I think you give good advice that should be shared with all the internets, plus my friend from Nebraska asked me for man advice and I am obviously not good at that, so I would like to refer her to you. Just don't tell her he's a commitment-phobe, hey?
Sure, why not? I mean you could get your crappy advice elsewhere, or you could get it here, at The Single Life.
But don't believe Halterwhip when she says she's not good at that. Puh-lease. If anything she needs to learn how to swat them away more effectively. And 2, yes, perhaps in the past the term commitmentphobia was thrown around a bit loosely, but that's what'll happen when your next romance shows up a bit early, i.e. when you'll still reading relationship advice books.
Point is, The Single Life will now be featuring advice posts (contingent upon receiving any requests that is). And I make no claim that it will be useful, but it might serve twin purposes.
You might feel better just getting another opinion.
It will help fulfill my compulsion to tell people what to do.
So send in your questions, people. Type them on up in the old comments here. There are none too big or too small (it's none that would be a problem).
But I did have a pretty sweet Halloween. Ruhroh, Halterwhip, ViolentOffender and I went to Scoobarella and Tiger's place for a big ol' costume party in the barn. It was a super good time. Ruhroh and I went as Joe Sixpack and Jo the Plumber.
Halterwhip was an undecided (and slightly confused) voter from Florida and ViolentOffender was zombie Julia Childs.
We started the night with Sparks on Ruhroh's insistence (He's a smart guy, that Ruhroh). And we were at the scene of the crime! The first time Ruhroh and I met was at a costume party at the barn. He hit on my boyfriend at the time immediately upon walking in and only paid any attention to me about, oh, let's say... 3 hours later.
Anyway, upon entering the barn I saw one of the post-docs in my lab. I was halfway through a conversation with him and his wife when I remembered my shirt was unbuttoned nearly to my navel. Inappropriate!
And then I started smacking people on the booty with ViolentOffender's giant spatula. It was satisfying and except for the first one, I never got caught. Apparently I looked unsuspecting or something. Who knew? All I'm saying is, next party you go to, bring a spatula.
So I was supposed to have a tool belt, but the woman I was going to borrow it from didn't show up. Oh well, no problem. I just started carrying the ol' mini-plunger in my shirt. I used it as a drink holder for a while, then zombie Julia Childs decided to serve snacks out of it.
Genius! I guess that's why she's famous!
And then we started dancing. Of course. Until 4 am. Apparently Sparks makes you stay up long after you should have passed out.
The next morning Ruhroh kept talking about the night. I don't quite remember everything. Splitting a Sparks with Ruhroh at 3am? Really? I danced with my shirt completely unbuttoned for an hour and a half? Really? I tried to get ViolentOffender and Ruhroh to take their shirts off so I could too. Really? Well, it was hot. So I compromised and demanded her apron so I could just wear that.
And I'm not sure you can see it, but here's Halterwhip breaking it down to some Paula.
You're welcome, Halterwhip! Now you see why we go dancing all the time. And now she'll probably never let me within 100 feet of her with a camera.
Oh, oh, I am tired. Three times as long to process your thoughts, get distracted easily, can't summon the energy to do laundry, tired.
Guess what? We went dancing. Surprised? Yeah, whatever, keep it to yourself. Violent Offender, The 26th and I went dancing in the city for Halterwhip's friend's birthday. Some Caribbean-type place. It was tiny. It was hot. But the music was good, and they had drinks made with tamarind. It was a riot watching Halterwhip dodge kisses from some dreadlocked guy. Her jawline received a lot of attention that night.
I danced for 3 hours. Straight. I seriously got tired and by the end my back was killing me. (Question: Can you still count it as exercise if you follow it with pizza at 2 am?).
By the time we finished the pizza, walked back to the car, drove back to Halterwhip's place, and got into bed, it was 4.
This morning we made bacon cinnamon rolls. Intrigued? You just roll up a piece of bacon in refrigerated tube cinnamon rolls and bake it up as normal.
The verdict? I hate to say it, oh god I hate to say it, but better separate. The bacon just doesn't get crispy enough.
I've got a lot of work to do this week. And I plan to impress myself and get a lot done. So now I've got to get to sleep. But I'll leave you with these pretty flowers from near Halterwhip's house.
It seems Dance Night is multiplying like an infection. First it was Thursday nights, now Friday night too, oh and don't forget Saturdays! Yikes. Here's the deal though. If I go dancing enough, it could be my main form of exercise. How great is that? The ultimate multitasking. Fun + friends + drinks + exercise + music = I'm there.
Last night Scoobarella was in town so I met her, Ruhroh and other friends out for drinks. We ended up at Little Krakow and they had a DJ playing Latiney stuff. We finally ended up on the dance floor. This guy started dancing with me and it was fun cause he was a good dancer. Anyway, I was trying really hard to dance and have a good time without sending out any signals. That's a fine line to walk. After the last song we all went outside and he asked if we could go to coffee. To which Scoobarella replied, "How old are you?" Ha! He replied, "21", which threw me and Scoobarella into hysterics. So he says, "I turn 22 in 2 weeks". More hysterics. He did seem older. He asked my age, I told him, he said I looked much younger. This is either flattering or good game. So then he asked for my number and I told him I was dating someone. He didn't seem to believe me, and it's true, I've used that lie before, so he asked me what his name was. I told him. At which point he said, "It seems like you really like him". "Yes, yes I do. It was fun dancing with you."
The thing is, this guy knew what he was doing. At 21. Good for him.
Tonight is Top 40 night. I'm hoping for Katy Perry and Estelle.
Oh yes, and last night I dreamt about snowboarding.
For the travel grant to which I'm applying, I need to submit a transcript (shocker). So I'm looking at it online and I see this:
Advanced to Candidacy: Doctor of Philosophy
And I'm looking at it like, 'When did that happen?'. I'm this close being a D o' P? Whaaaaa? Sure, it was me who made all those decisions to get to this place, but for a moment there it was almost like 20 year old me was transported into 29 year old me and she was shocked. And kind of proud.
Oh dear. Seeing as how I have about a million things to do and the clock is ticking, it's a great time to have a domestic day, right? Yeah, no. In the next two weeks I have to finish the revisions to my first paper, apply to that post-doc, submit an abstract to a conference (and figure out what the talk will be about), and finish a travel grant application. So get on that, yes?
I could go grocery shopping at two different places, do 4 days worth of dishes, polish the silverware, clean the bathroom, sweep the floor, do a couple loads of laundry, and make dinner for 9. Sure, let's do that.
In my defense, I knew I would be having my friends over for dinner and I just realized today that my bathroom, floor and silverware were not to be viewed by one more person in that condition. I know some people who know what I'm talking about here. Good news is, the dinner went well, and just check out the silverware.
Well, after working 10 hours today I'm up late reading advice on how to land that perfect post-doc. Anyway, I have to check the ol' RSS reader before really going to bed (doesn't everyone?) and ran into the most recent PhD comic. You may need to click to enlarge.
Funny, huh? Or not, depending on where you fall on the chart. I'm aiming left.
Ever since I finalized (via paperwork) that I need to be done with this whole school thing by June 2009 I've started to realize my time in this cow-town is limited. And that makes me appreciate it just a little bit more. I've really started to solidify the things I like about it.
Thursday dance night. Always a good time. And since it's a small town affair, there's no cover, drinks are reasonable, I know a lot of people there, and it's super close to la petit maison.
The community. It's suuuuper easy to meet people here. It is the university atmosphere after all. And there are plenty of social events to go to. On the downside, people I like are constantly moving away.
The Farmer's Market. So I don't go there very much. But every time I do I eat some good food.
The pizza place where I can sit on the deck with pizza, beer, and free wireless.
The natural food co-op. I love the veggie sushi and I have a love/hate relationship with the fact that every single time I walk in I see someone I know.
But still, I'm ready to move on. Ready to move to a city with lots of stuff to do. Ready to double my income. Ready to work 9-5 with my weekends free. Ready for all of you to have to call me doctor (the otherkind of doctor).
Just this weekend my advisor forwarded me an email from a great research group in the agency I want to work for, in the one of the cities I'd like to move to. They're looking for a post-doc. A post-doc who works on the stuff I work on and would like to work on in the future. The problem? They want to fill the position by January 2009. Can I write chapter two and do all of chapter three in 3 months? I have no idea. But I can try. And that just might get me out by June.
I'm having one of those days. One of those days you're better off just powering through and avoiding all feelings. I think you know what I mean. And in the spirit of powering through, I'm not even going to tell you what's going on. It's possibly minor and no need blowing it up.
Anyway, bless the little things that brighten a day like this. Such as these videos depicting Gordon Ramsey as a little boy. Hilarious.
I thought as much. But who can blame you? I was in a foreign country after all.
Exhibit 1: Weird money.
Exhibit 2: Canadians speak a foreign language, whether it's French (which is all over in Ottawa) or an excessive and completely unsexy use of 'eh'.
Exhibit 3: Weird food. I was advised to try the poutine (which is NOT the same as putain or poontang), but may still cause a few giggles. It's french fries covered in beef gravy and cheese curds. Meh. It's no french fries covered in cheddar cheese and honey. Was also advised to try the beavertails at the market, which are basically a cross between a donut and a funnel cake. Um, yes please. There are many different kinds, but the classic is covered in cinnamon and sugar and fresh lemon juice. Soooooooooooooooooooo good. I could live on these. For reals.
Exhibit 4: I was without phone for 5 days. So I've got a lot of pent-up stuff to say. Here goes...
Loooong flights. But I did see The Office and Made of Honor, that movie with Patrick Dempsey. If you're gonna watch a shitty plane movie, it might as well be one you wanted to see, and I love Patrick Dempsey. It also has the mean girl from Freaks and Geeks. Love her. If you haven't seen this show, get it from Netflix NOW! Made of Honor? Only if, like me, you need to see another 2 hours of Hot Doctor. Got to the jail hostel around 11 pm. Not the best time to show up for your bed in a building that used to be a jail. It's more than slightly creepy.
Was out the door by 10:30. Later than planned, but still 7:30 my time, people! Saw some talks. During lunch watched Strange Days on Planet Earth: Dirty Secrets, which is a PBS video on recent knowledge of human impacts on the ocean, narrated by ED NORTON! Was this made especially for me? I think so! I don't know how you knew, PBS, but thank you. Look down at the plastic bag my sandwich came in during the section about the giant flotilla of plastic trash in the North Pacific Gyre and realize that I'm part of the problem. Right. This. Second!!! Get some cool posters and free books from the agency I want to work with when I finish. The booth advertising next year's meeting was giving away Goo Goo Clusters. I stare at it, like you're seriously giving this to me? He thinks I'm from the South because I know what they are. Noooo, I just have a deep and personal relationship with candy. Of COURSE I know what they are! (As long as we're on this subject, I actually packed candy in my suitcase. It keeps me motivated and awake during long meetings, but as I was doing it I thought, oh my god, the only person I know who does this is my father. And I always thought it was the weirdest little addictive personality trait. Although sometimes I also carry a flask. And I can be bossy. So I am a sum of my parts. Just parents 2.0 I guess. Except my dad's genes appear to be delayed response.) So then that night the wildlife conservation unit of police (or mounties or whatever) gave a demonstration of their working dogs. So there are men in uniform all over Ottawa, and they are muuuuch cuter than in the US. I have no idea why. But a cute man in uniform with a dog??? That's not even playing fair, but don't look a gift horse in the mouth, I say. Tuesday:
I give my talk, right after lunch, to 10 people. I flew 2,500 miles to give a talk to 10 people? Um, great. Whatevs.
More talks and then there's a big social at the biggest museum in Canada. I walk by Parliament on my way there.
Free food and drinks while roaming around the museum. Always the sign of a good science conference.
Complete with authentic totem poles from British Columbia.
So I'm standing at a giant poster of an (apparently) famous Canadian government laboratory and I think, where the F is this place? So I ask the man standing next to me if he knows where it is. He gives me a funny look and says, "Yes, you're right. This poster doesn't say, does it?" and proceeds to tell me that he gave a talk that afternoon about the lab's history because he used to be the DIRECTOR of the place. Oh, God. And he looks at my name tag to make sure that it's ok that I don't know (I'm not sure he decided it was ok). And then he gives me a short rundown of the lab and tells me that he's glad I asked where it was cause he didn't like that poster anyway, but couldn't say so because the women who made it is so nice (Silly Canadian!). So that was smooth. Leave it to me to look like a nimrod.
Picture from the poster. Still funny. I hope there were women on the island.
Wander off. Meet two guys and their advisor from Maryland. We go explore the museum. Keep in mind when I saw 'we' I mean the advisor too, cause he's only 34 and fun. And they've all got a crass sense of humor. And were only interested in talking about science about 5% of the time. So these guys? Just my style.
There's this actual Hungarian church they transplanted into the museum. There's only so long I can drink in a church, so we moved on.
When the social was over we head over to the Scottish bar for more beer. The bar has these things that are like pitchers but look like blenders with a tap and a tube full of ice to keep it cold. We finish FOUR of these. I think two of them were ordered consecutively at last call (now this is always a bad sign. If you think you've got to load up before last call, YOU ARE WRONG. But nobody in the near vicinity was in any shape to use this little fact of life and drinking. And the waitress kept bringing them. You know there's such a thing as too nice, Canadians!) They introduce me to a guy who works at the main office of the agency I want to work for (I got his card, now where is it?), and a guy who was just offered a job at my university. Now keep in mind - I am hammered. And so are they. I cannot at all recall what we attempted to discuss except that it was professional. I hope I made a little sense. Who knows, maybe I do a better job explaining my research while drinking. Anything's possible. Then they walk me back to my jail cell at 3:30. So if we left the bar at 2:30 then it took us an hour to get back to the jail a half mile away? I mean, I admit we got lost, sure, but...what? Or were we still at the bar at 3? Yikes. Sorry Canadian barkeeps. I apologize for our American rudeness. We're accustomed to getting more violently booted from a place while drunk. We're not just gonna leave.
Ugggggghhhhhh. Wake up hungover in jail. Have to force myself out of bed. Straggle into the conference at 11:00. Run into my new friends at an 11:40 talk, which is the first talk they've made it to, but still impressive considering one of them was up Wednesday morning at 6 to run in the 5k. We go check out the mall over lunch and I try, for the third time, to shop for some damn boots for fall. But it wasn't meant to be I guess, especially when I realize that the sales tax is 13 percent! I decide Canada doesn't need my tax money. I mean, look at these damn manicured gardens they've got all over the place.
Nobody likes a showoff, Canada!
Then we're sorely disappointed that the stupid Canadian movie theatre isn't showing a matinee of Stepbrothers. What. The. F? I get some loaded fries (cheese, sour cream, green onions, and this weird corn sauce) and a pepsi in the food court (hangover breakfast of champions!). I suggest again that they try the poutine. Again they giggle. The pepsi only seems to heighten the swirly hungover feeling. Pepsi, why have you forsaken me?!
Go back for a few afternoon talks, say bye to the new friends, go have Chinese food at the market, go shopping at my new favorite Canadian store Jacob and actually pull the trigger and buy a shirt and jacket (on sale!), then watch the Olympics in French back at the hostel.
Wake up, pack, and go unload my last fiver on maple candy. Fly home.
It's good to be back. It's good to use the phone. Now I've got some maple candy that's calling my name...
So today I'm flying to Canada for a conference. I'll be giving a talk on Tuesday, which I need to work on on the plane. This will basically be my first time visiting our northerly neighbors, if you don't count that time when I was 12 and we crossed over to the Canadian side of Niagara Falls. Also my first time being out of the country by myself. I know Canada hardly counts, but it kind of does.
Exhibit 1: I'll have to exchange money Exhibit 2: No cell phone service (for less than $0.50/minute anyway) Exhibit 3: There will be weird food (I hope!)
I'll also be doing a bit of seeing the city by myself. I haven't done this in quite a while.
I will only be reachable by email - at least I hope wireless is as abundant as trees and permafrost up there. This will be a painful social experiment for me - going without instant connection. Yipes. We'll see how it goes. Ohhh, maybe I can still instant message (fingers crossed).
Thank you old Outback for initiating me into the world of the Subaru... but this one? This one? Swoon
So I bought a new car. New as in new, which is weird for me. But this way I know the maintenance is done right and nobody effed up my car before I owned it. Plus, used Subarus hold their value so aren't really even a better deal. I actually bought it (ahem, signed the paperwork) on Tuesday but the dealer kept it until Thursday in order to install the MP3 jack and fog lights. Fancy!
And I just finished installing the roof rack.
I personally am not a fan of the old Impreza wagon design (I know not everyone agrees with me, Middleman!), so I think Subaru's timing for the redesign of the Impreza was spot on. Yay! Just in time for me to buy it! And it's zippier than the Outback, and more my size - turns out the Outback is more car than I need.
So I need to take it on a few road trips. I'm thinking small - bay area, mountain biking... Bajabucky - wanna see if we can get the canoe on it? Ok, maybe not. That may be the downside to the smaller car - no canoe.
So thanks to everyone who helped me out during this stressful car buying experience.
Credits: Loan - Mom Generous gift - Grandma Copious advice - Mom, Dad, Grandma, Bajabucky, The OutofTowner, Tiger Time spent car shopping - Bajabucky Alternative transportation in the interim - Bajabucky, Flipper, Ruhroh
You left me too soon. Good thing I snapped this pic of you on one of our last trips together. You were very pretty.
Who knew that somebody likely overtightened your timing belt tensioner, causing a bolt to shear off, the belt to rub through the cover, and 1-4 valves of the engine to be damaged? Not me.
At some point I will get involved with another Subaru. I am hoping that relationship will last longer, and that she will not entirely drain my wallet (yeah right!). But you will hold a special place in my heart because you were my first.
Wow, NPR just tied up a few of my recent posts in one neat little bow. "Youth Radio's Pendarvis Harshaw says that among his friends, the transition from condoms to no-condoms signifies a lasting commitment — more so even than walking down the aisle."
Is this downgrading of commitment a good thing? Maybe it's more realistic than a promise to be with someone forever. How many people are happy with the same person forever? This is a serious question, by the way. How many people do you know who lasted over 10 years and are still happy?
Or maybe it's just sad. I think there is value in making a promise to someone. Maybe you just need to be really picky about who that someone is, and keep communication, love and respect always on the front burner.
Or maybe it's just different for everyone. To each his own. But I don't think I'll be falling into this camp.
I decided I needed a little friends/beer/water time this weekend. Because my friends who up for it were either injured or stressed out, we decided to make it as easy as possible. BBQ at my place with a kiddie pool and some champagne. The champagne of beers, that is! Bajabucky looked at hers and said, "Oh, the champagne of beers. Now I get what you were talking about." Um, yes. How do you live several decades as a tried and true beer drinker without knowing this? It's a mystery.
Here are the stats:
kiddie pool - awesome
Bajabucky's teriyaki - awesome
my grill maintenance - poor
High Life and Red Vines - better separate
The best part was when Bajabucky got upset by something Tiger said, so she chucked her beer out the back door and across the lawn.
In other news, I'm starting to get serious about this learning bass guitar situation. I think I'll start with this song...
First I'll need to duct tape 1 more string onto mine.
Ok, really. This is the song I can play. Ignore the parts that sound like guitar. I don't do those. I do the parts that sound like bass.
Leave it to Jack White to write a sweet song that those of us who suck at an instrument can still play. Right Meg? Oh, snap! I realize Jack White is playing all of it on his guitar, but I'm a purist and that is where I draw the line. Alternatively, it could be because I don't own a guitar, whammy pedal, or the appropriate skills. You decide. I choose purist. The website where I got the bass tab calls this song "great for beginning bassists who wanna feel talented." Yep, that's me.
I went out after work on Thursday for Happy Hour. The plan was to have a beer than go home and work some more. It's 6 am. I just got home. So much for that plan.
How did I end up out for 12 hours on a Thursday? Good question. I'm not entirely sure. I think it had something to do with beer. One beer and good conversation leads to dinner at a friend's house, leads to watching fire dancing and hula hooping downtown (this is cool by the way). Leads to meet my friend Ruhroh out at dance night. Leads to dance until 2 at the bar (even if at moments you're only one of two people dancing). Eventually, as all things do, leads to "oh, we're being kicked out of the bar?" Afterparty at the Domes!
What are the Domes, you say? Why, they're the on-campus geodesic dome housing of course! What were you thinking of? Anyway, you can have a 4 person dance party there until 5 in the morning and no one cares. On a Thursday. And if you happen to wake the occupant of the dome next to you, he'll just wander in without a shirt on and laugh at you. And join the dance party for a few minutes before departing back to his bed. Why would he laugh you say? Well there's the dancing of course - which probably wouldn't win many awards for grace. Then there's the cross-dressing. Yes, that's right, spontaneous Thursday night cross-dressing. What were you thinking? I had a purple strapless prom dress and purple floppy gardening hat on (which technically doesn't count as cross-dressing, just bad taste), the friend who lived in the Dome had on a purple floor length silky nightgown which displayed his chest hair quite nicely, his neighbor donned a bubblegum pink slinky strapless skin-tight tube dress and pink tutu, and Ruhroh "covered" himself in a white g-string, red and black wig, and sunglasses. So you see why I didn't come home.
We danced up a storm. Who the hell needed other people? Not us! We also ate some awesome veggie sausage sandwiches which were pretty hot and nearly burned my tastebuds clean off, so I had to follow up with a peanut butter and butter sandwich. Mmmm. Oh, yes and we danced, shimmied, and shook on the wooden plank swing inside. Yes, a swing inside the dome. What were you thinking?
I biked home at sunrise. This is the only way I see this time of day - at the back end - never the beginning. I wonder if the people I passed on campus thought I was an early riser or saw through my bleary-eyed facade to the night owl I really am? We will never know.
Did you know that 1 in 5 women has HPV (the virus that causes genital warts and some types of cancer)? Which would lead a person to believe that the number in men is similar. Also, the CDC estimates that 1 in 4 teenage girls has at least one of the most common STDs (HPV, chlamydia, herpes simplex virus, trichomoniasis). Uh, what? Are you kidding me? What is the percentage for adults who (possibly - not me, of course) have more partners racked up? Jesus Christo! I'll sum it up for all you math-deficient out there. Statistically speaking, if you've had genital to genital contact with 5 people, you've probably got something. Of course all it takes is one - statistical variation and all that. Oh, this is the best part - HPV usually has no symptoms in men, so they can spread it all over the place and never know. And you can't test for HPV (it's a complex of 30 viruses) and the herpes test is nearly worthless.
Either I never knew this info, or I knew it when younger (and unattached) but forgot it. You know, young people tend to think they're invincible and whatnot. Why isn't the government screaming this at us? Sex education in this country is absolutely abysmal. I grew up having the fear of pregnancy mentally beat into me (thanks Mom! it's worked so far!), but this? This? It's effing shocking.
Use condoms 100% of the time. Always. For all skin contact (you know what I mean).
If you're under 26 get your HPV vaccination. Sadly, some of us are too old.
And just for good measure, pray for something that's cleared with antibiotics.
Because, really, can you imagine screeching all the excitement and romance to a halt in order to have the "I have an STD" conversation? Ick.
If we happen to be hanging out in the real world amongst other people, as we are sometimes wont to do, please do not bring up the ol' blog. I am attempting to have only a select few readers of this know who I am (namely those people I would be this open with already, and granted, that's a lot of people - I have a small case of what they call boundary issues). I realize this anonymity thing is a slippery slope, and that if my cover's blown it's my own fault, but I like to live on the edge.
Halterwhip and I went to High Sierra Music Festival this weekend. We got there Friday right before the Mike Gordon show (which I was super excited about) after arriving later than expected (due to sleeping late in response to a raucous night before and detour thanks to the CA wildfires). As we drove up I saw my future - dusty boogs and boob sweat. We had to shlep (read: carry) all our gear to the campsite. This included one duffel, two backpacks, one Action Packer, one 30 lb food cooler, one 20 lb beer cooler, one giant bag of food, one camp stove and 2 camp chairs. I forced Halterwhip to leave the watermelon behind. You would have thought we would be there for weeks.
For those of you who aren't acquainted with Halterwhip, here's what you need to know. She rolls through life with a good attitude and has a good time, and she's generally not what I would call a 'list-maker.' For every hour for, oh, about the first 24 hours of the trip she would discover something else that she forgot. Here are some highlights:
the fact that she doesn't like jam bands
But you've got to hand it to her. She's up for anything. And she'll have a smile on her face while doing it. Even if she hates you. Especially if she hates you. Here's what hanging out with her is like:
Me (while setting up camp): I wonder if I'm going to read before I go to sleep tonight or just pass out? Halterwhip: Do you believe our destiny is predetermined?
She'll keep you on your toes, that one.
Turns out she also has quite the knack for picking out shows with hot musicians just by reading the band bio. It's amazing. This little personality trait made me very happy.
So, High Sierra. Yes it's a hippie fest. Here's proof.
Tent specifically for breastfeeding.
Makeshift pool (yes that water is opaque).
Themes of the festival:
acai berry (It was everywhere. Seriously, who's getting rich off this marketing scheme? Cause I'd like to buy some stock. Do you think they'd take car wash tokens?)
bands with organs
hula hoops (this one baffles me)
Let's talk about the musical highlights.
The Ryan Montbleau Band - Beautiful voice, beautiful lyrics, beautiful voila player. They'll make you dance and cry all at the same time, and I swear to everything holy that the drummer looks like Animal from the Muppets, but of course, since Halterwhip picked this band out, cute. We saw these guys twice. During the second show Halterwhip handed me a Red Vine during a super danceable section of song. I couldn't have been happier - not even with some Mr. Pibb, cause I probably would have just ended up covered in Pibb and sticky. Unfortunately these bastards are from Massachusetts so mostly tour on the East Coast. That really cramps my style, guys.
James Hunter and his band- This guy is from London with an accent that makes him nearly incomprehensible when he speaks, but in the tradition of all British musicians sings in an American accent. (Question: What's with this?) This guy has an amazing voice and the band is tight. They were like soul mixed with rockabilly. PS. The keyboardist was super hot due to his very sexual playing (thanks Halterwhip!). I've listened to their album since and think they're a better band in person - they expand the songs and you really get to see the guy on keys shine, if you know what I mean.
The Lee Boys - I'm not sure how to explain these guys. Gospel that will make you shake your ass? See them and you will dance. And if you can't get over the God thing then just pretend that they're saying 'sun' instead of 'son.' I'm pretty sure that's what this guy up front was doing as he kept motioning into the air.
So I must be honest and admit that we went to the Phix show (they're a Phish cover band). Phix is to Phish as masturbation is to sex. One requires closing your eyes and focus, while during the other you want to open up all your senses to everything. But I was impressed at times and it was fun, and they did a pretty good Funky Bitch. I'd see them for free again, even though it feels like my secret shame.
Oh, this reminds me. Some guy tried to hit on me at that show and did a pretty piss poor job of it. So here are some hints for all the guys out there:
Probably don't try to hit on someone on the fourth day of a camping festival. Especially if you're from another state.* Because the only thing I can possibly think you want out of this is just gross.
Don't get too f%^ed up to properly have a conversation with a girl.
You'll need to have more game than just standing close to me for the whole show.
If you need some lessons, I can get you in touch with this guy. On the plus side, he did tell me the name of a song I couldn't remember. So he turned out to be semi-useful.
And finally, after bitching all weekend that I needed a tent attic, I jury-rigged myself one for free. It also doubles as a nice hat storage locker. They could probably sell this system at REI for $45.
There isn't often a mood bleak enough that La Perla can't fix. Brewing up to be a shitty day?
Step 1. Put on the matching green lace bra and wide side thong. Step 2. Put on whatever the hell you want over it. Doesn't even matter. But for maximum effect, let the bra straps show. Step 3. Bike to school. (cause that's the kind of girl I am)
The effect is similar to Paolo Nutini's New Shoes. Which reminds me. Your own personal feel-good playlist can buoy you up on days that would otherwise reek of doldrum. I'll even share my own personal favorite list made this spring. This one makes me walk around thinking, "I. am. awesome!":
It's quickly becoming clear to me, after ending a relationship this spring that lasted the past several years, that the life of a single woman is filled with a lot more ups and downs than the life of a committed. (Question: Is this a general rule or just the case when you are in a relationship with someone who quite honestly ended up boring you into the arms of any and all reality shows you could get your glassy eyes on?).
Point is, there's a lot going on here, and I've been blessed with more amazing friends and family than one girl can keep in the loop. I know you care, and I want to tell you, but this is the 10th time I've had this conversation and I need to move on. Also, this should free up some time in the conversation to talk about you. Hence: blog.
I'll really try to keep this all relevant and interesting and save the scattered, schizo, shotgun thoughts to my own private nightstand hardcopy. It's probably better for all involved that way.