Friday, September 30, 2011

The adequate, forgettable, and occasionally regrettable

An interesting thing about Eugene is that it has streets named after presidents. That's not so uncommon, except Eugene doesn't just have the popular or well known presidents. They've got the standard Lincoln, Jefferson, and Madison to be sure, but they also have people like Hayes, Garfield, and Fillmore represented. My only beef with their system is that the presidential streets aren't in any order. In my mind, it makes the most sense to place them in the order they served, so if you're driving around looking for Harding and you come across Coolidge, you know you've gone too far. I also secretly hoped they'd have more than one street named after Cleveland in honor of his two nonconsecutive terms, but alas, they do not. So, here is a sample of the new improved set-up I am proposing:

Pretty snazzy, right? Also, where a president intersects with the street corresponding to his presidential number, a statue will be erected. That way when you come across a statue of a man stuck in a bathtub you'll know you're at the corner of Taft and 27th. Suggestions on how to pose the other presidential statues to ensure instant recognition are welcome.

Monday, September 26, 2011

The state of things

A month ago we left Provo, dragging all our worldly possessions behind us in a trailer. It's a 14 hour drive to Portland, but we were buoyed up by the thought that we'd probably never have to make it again. So we drove and drove and drove some more, and eventually arrived at Optimistic.'s folks, where we were planning on staying a few days until we could secure an apartment in Eugene. However, instead of moving into anywhere, we got jerked around and promised apartments that would never actually become available. This is because all realtors are lying pieces of crud. So instead of four days, we spent four weeks in Portland, and are now down in Eugene staying with some nice members from the ward because Optimistic.'s classes started today and his job started a week before that.

We did find a place (without the help of the many realty agencies we paid fees to), and I'm pretty excited about it, the only snag being that it doesn't open up until Oct. 1st, hence all the commuting and living with people we don't know. It's a triplex, with the owners living on site. Our apartment is built just off the side of their house, and then there's a third apartment upstairs and around the back.
Here's our apartment off to the side.

And a shot of the kitchen, which is pretty small, but there's a nice big living room, and you can kind of see off to the side there's a bonus room with sliding glass doors leading to the back yard.

And our bedroom upstairs has hardwood floors.

The hardest part of this whole excursion has definitely been having all our stuff in storage. I packed a very limited set of stuff to take with us, which means I've been wearing the same outfit to church for the last three weeks and I'm running out of Q-tips. All my books, movies, craft supplies, and pots and pans are packed away and I'm going a bit stir-crazy not being able to do any of the things I normally do. Worst of all, this weekend should have been my fifth annual Hobo Fest, which rather ironically can't be held because I don't have a place to live.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

It's a sickness, people.

We're getting ready to move, which means digging all of our stuff out of our apartment's many nooks, crannies, abysses, etc. To say our apartment was built with storage in mind is an understatement. We have closets within closets within closets of stuff, most of which hasn't been looked at since we crammed it away almost four years ago. Today I decided to start tackling the office closet. (I say start to ease the pressure of cleaning out this monstrosity in one day).

Well, I got all the boxes off the top shelf and happened upon a box of 100 cassette tapes (super useful), as well as a big white envelope marked MRI. So I opened it up, and what do I find? Scans of my sister's brain from 2007.

People, today I must admit that my pack-rattery has astounded even me. I don't know why I have these scans. Maybe she gave them to me. Maybe I stole them from her. I cannot say. Most likely she didn't want them and I thought they might come in handy, but what sort of person thinks that? Who looks at their sister's old MRI's and thinks hmmm...I could make a chandelier out of that? Me, apparently.

-Genuine Draft
Pack-Rat Extraordinaire

Wednesday, August 03, 2011


I am now back from our Alaskan cruise adventure, which was indeed an adventure owing to the fact that I got sick the night before we left for Seattle. The one week I actually had plans I got bronchitis. As a result I spent a lot of time coughing (things up) and ended up losing my voice for a bit. It was fun times. But, on to the pictures!

Here's Optimistic. outside our boat (the Sapphire Princess) in Seattle. You can tell from the fierceness of his gaze that he is impatient to get to the cruising already. Why? Because there is food on the boat!

Lobstee, no! You are not really food! You have too much to live for! Eventually I talked him down, and before we knew it we were off the boat and in Ketchikan, the salmon capital of the world.

Here are all the siblings in Eagle park doing their best to look majestic/eagle-like. Most of them failed so we moved on to look at the gift shops where we had the pleasure of running into Sarah Palin.

This was a dream come true for Optimistic., but due to a restraining order filed by Ms. Palin earlier this year, he was forced to don a disguise so as to admire her up close.

Ah yes, she'll never recognize him now! After Ketchikan we went through Tracy Arm, which I'm told was beautiful but I chose to sleep through. Here's a picture Optimistic. took from the top deck.

After that it was on to Juneau where we ventured out into the rain to board a tour bus whose windows were so fogged up we couldn't really see anything.

But we trundled along and the driver gave us the scoop on the history of Juneau and after an enjoyable ride we arrived at the Mendenhall Glacier.

Yes, it's blue, and if you had sat through the movie at the Visitor's center twice like I did you'd know why. The big thrill of the visit was getting to touch a 250 year old piece of ice.

As a bonus I've included this guy who works at the visitor's center. Cool, right? Once Lobstee saw the ice there was no keeping him from it.

I had a lot of trouble keeping him from climbing into all the displays. He's full of mischief like that. Here he is crawling around in a bear's mouth. He has no fear that lobster.

Optimistic. was just as bad, as evidenced by the following picture in which he is shaking hands with a goat. They're ripe for blackmail, the both of them.

Our next stop was Skagway. Optimistic. was off zip-lining so I went to the Skagway Museum and poked around.

There were a lot of interesting artifacts on display from the time of the town's founding and I would have stayed longer if Lobstee hadn't managed to get us thrown out. Something about illegal gambling combined with the use of flash photography.

I say putting a roulette wheel out in the open like that is asking for trouble. Either way I was back on the boat before I knew it.

The next leg of our journey meant a few days on board as we headed for Canada, so we had a lot of time to hang out together. This entailed eating a lot of food and playing a lot of cards.

Check out this excellent hand. Several movies on TV later we arrived in Victoria, constituting my first trip out of the country.

We walked around, saw the sights, and spent a chunk of Canadian money on souvenirs.

And that was the end of the cruise. But unfortunately not the end of our trip. After we disembarked in Seattle we spent sixteen hours driving back to Provo in a gigantic SUV that ended up running out of gas 25 miles outside of La Grande. But that's a whole different story involving a tow truck driver, Weird Al, and talk of eel smuggling.

Friday, July 08, 2011

How I plan to hang pictures

Two things I want to have in my future house: permanent picture frames and photo corners.

The idea with a permanent frame is that it would be glassless, perhaps with a painted cork back or clips to hold things in place. But it would just stay where it is, fixed to the wall, and I could hang up the drawing of the week or something fun.

We've got a family picture wall in our apartment which consists of pictures with tape on the back stuck up on the wall. I like that it can be easily rearranged, but I don't like that the edges are always curling. So someday I'd like to install a whole mess of metal picture corners on the wall. That way I can switch pictures in and out while still having the whole thing be somewhat permanent.

That's all really.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

The allergy sufferer's anxiety at the graduation ceremony

Lately my rhinitis has been bad enough that I've resorted to just sticking a tissue up my nose and walking around the house that way.* It keeps my hands free, which is nice, but it's starting to become a habit, and I sometimes have to remind myself not to do it in public.

I'm mostly at peace with the fact that I'm going to spend the next sixty years constantly blowing my nose, but that doesn't mean it isn't a bit depressing. I'm the person people say "bless you" to eight times before they realize the sneezing isn't going to stop so they drop the charade of caring already. I'm the person in the theatre or lecture hall that's blowing their nose so violently no one can hear what's being said. I'm the person everyone assumes is sick, and they judge me for coming out in public and making other people sick, even though what I've got isn't catching.

I know I'm that person, and I've come to terms with it, but I just this morning realized that next week I have to sit through my graduation ceremony, and depending on how much dust there is and whether or not the girl sitting next to me happens to be wearing perfume, I may go through upwards of 50 Kleenexes in the space of two hours.

Do I bring an entire box with me? Where am I going to put them all once I've used them? Should I arrange to have a small trash can placed under my seat? We don't have assigned seats. I'll have to carry it on stage myself. Am I bold enough to take the stage carrying a small lined trash can and an entire box of Kleenex? That's pretty bold. Why not just bring an ottoman and make myself at home?

And when we get up to receive our diplomas, we're not supposed to take anything with us. Surely I can conceal one or two tissues in my left hand? I don't need my left hand for anything, do I? Or is that the hand I take the diploma with while I shake the Dean's right hand? Maybe I can rubber band them to my wrist. How long are the sleeves on my robe?

And on and on it goes. Maybe instead of worrying about it I should just embrace it already and bring a gigantic red and white spotted clown hanky that I can blow my nose into as ostentatiously as possible.

In short, I have no idea how I'm going to get through two hours without making a spectacle of myself.

*I have a tissue crammed up my nose right now. It's bliss.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

What they're teaching me in school

You should watch this. Right now.

And if you have time, this one.

And this one.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

We're going to Eugene!

No, not that Eugene, this Eugene.

Come fall, I will be back in Oregon where I belong! Woot!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


This Friday I get to go to an advance screening of the film I worked on last summer. You can see a trailer for "For Robbing the Dead" here.

Knowing that I'm finally going to see it now that it's completed and polished makes me a little bit giddy. It will take all my self control not to lean over to Optimistic. during the screening and poke him to point out the things I helped with (the shears on the table 10 seconds into the trailer? I picked those out.) It will be hard, but I will resist.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

knit picking

Is anyone out there a fantastically gifted knitter/crocheter? I need to commission a scarf with a phrase knitted into it, which is very much above my skill level. Chances are, one of you must be a closet crocheter, so speak up now and I will be forever grateful.