Saturday, December 29, 2007


Even though I'm at home for Christmas and New Year's and I happen to be staying in my old bedroom, I'm feeling a lot like and intruder. My cat, Max, seems to think that he is being very generous to allow me to be in HIS room.

He spends the practically the entire day lounging around on my bed. Then at night he insists on my attention being either on him or nothing. I can't spend more than a few minutes on the computer or reading a book without him getting right up in my face, purring loudly as he walks across my keyboard (very delicately, as though he knows he's being a twerp) or laying across my book. It's not enough for him that I pet him and scratch his chin and behind his ears while I do whatever (even though this makes it drastically more complicated to type and turn pages), I have to focus on just him. When I turn off the computer or close the book he immediately returns to his spot right smack in the middle of the bed.

I would also like it to be noted that cats (and small children) somehow manage to take up more space on a bed than should be physically possible. I argue the the physics of a bed are entirely different than normal physics, otherwise someone please explain.

Or perhaps the very nature of a bed (being a catalyst to enter the dream world) is by definition part of an alternate reality.

It's late. I'm tired. I'm also starting to type dyslexically.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Seeing the World from the Inverse

I was in an airplane a few days ago. It was my first real opportunity to fly and sit in a window seat. It's odd to me that flight is possible. Don't get me wrong, I understand the physics of it. I know why it works, and that makes sense, but it still seems so wrong. And I even enjoy flying. But it's like one of those dreams. The ones that seem real, and you want them to be real, but you know they aren't. It's kind of like that, I suppose. There I am, and it all starts off ok. I am sitting there in a normal position safely buckled in, kind of like a car ride. And then I start moving. Suddenly, I am going faster than I have gone in any car, ever. And then I am off the ground. And it's just not right. Fun, and kind of cool, but wrong.

Eventually you are going through the clouds. If it's a really cloudy day you are looking at a backwards world. The clouds are all beneath you. A big layer of glorious pillow soft looking white. And it's all under you. If you care to you can look up. And that, my friends, is where the really sight to be seen is. Upwards, there is a color not normally known. It's this deep glorious exquisite color of blue. It's not the Crayola sky blue. Crayon sky blue is a cheap washed out imitation in comparison. It's this wonderful blue of the deepest ocean, or a perfect sapphire. You can almost see stars peeping through, it's that dark of a blue. And for about an hour, I wondered why green was my favorite color. Because if I could be continually surrounded in that wonderful azure blanket I think I would be happy forever.

I don't understand what bothers some people about flying. Aside from the outright wrongness of it all. I don't know why some people have trouble sleeping on the plane. To me the sound of the engines is kind of comforting. It's this soothing continuous purr that drowns out everything else. There you are floating in a pure blanket of cerulean. You are separated from the world below by a downy soft looking ocean of cloud. You might as well be one of the last people left. For all you know you are.

But then, for about fifteen minutes during the descent into Portland, you are drowning in a sea of grey and white. Everywhere you look there is only cloud, and you can't help but think that the pilot is going to crash you into a mountainside. But then, right before you are sure you will never see anything again, and you have begun to suspect you have gone blind, you break through the clouds that hang over Oregon in the winter. And you remember why green is your favorite color. Because suddenly you are awash in a jungle of it. Shade after shade pops out at you. As wonderful as the infinite and eternal expanse of gorgeous sapphire was, the forest of chartreuse and emerald is even more breath-taking. While the sky high above the clouds and the world was the perfect blue, the color that the hero's eyes always are in romantic stories, the variety, the limitless selection of shades, outweighs it.

Green is comforting, it's alive, it's breathing. And while the blue of that sky will make you feel like you are the only person within the atmosphere, the green of the trees and the grass and the rivers will remind you that you aren't. It wraps you up, and carries you home.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Scotland Here I Come!

So I've been thinking lately about my obsession with Scotland. It's rather unexplained. I haven't read a lot about it, or seen a lot of movies about it. Basically, all I have to go on is that kilts are hot (or they can be), bagpipes are amazing, ancient castles are cool, and the accents are awesome. I don't even really know that much about Scotland. Aside from where it is on a map, and that's it's green and pretty there.

I finally decided to do some investigating. Part of this was inspired by an early Christmas present from my roommate. A book entitled "My Heart's in the Lowlands: Ten Days in Bonny Scotland" by Liz Curtis Higgs. It's awesome. It's basically a step by step description of a trip to Scotland. The cover is gorgeous and it has some cool illustrations.

I also remembered that two years ago while doing a project for a genealogy class, I ran across some people from Scotland in my ancestry. I recall it being just one or two and that the research for that line ended there. So I set out to do some work.

I remembered it was on my paternal grandfather's side of the family. From there I didn't have much else. I set to work on to solve the mystery. I found that I am related to Henry I King of England, whose father was William the Conqueror. I am also related to Charlemange, some Norwegian, Swedish, Danish, and Finish royalty, a bunch of Welsh people, and bunch of French people (which I was rather unaware of, so a bit of a shock there, I'll have to stop making fun of the French), some Italian royalty, and oddly enough, Old King Cole. I don't remember his real name, as I was laughing when I saw the "Old King Coel" part. He lived sometime around the year 125. I was getting really frustrated to not be finding any Scots.

I finally in an act of desperation typed in my great-grandmother Josephine Wing. And lo and behold! Scotland!

It took me three hours of searching to discover one of the coolest things (I think) about my ancestry. I am a descendant of Malcolm III King of Scotland, and a bunch of other Scottish people, (many of them from Galloway, which is in the Lowlands) mostly royalty. Why is this so amazing? First off, I can finally claim with confidence Scottish ancestry. Second, I am not only part Scottish, I am part Scottish royalty. Third, Malcolm III was fictionalized in Shakespeare's play Macbeth, which is one of my favorites.

This explains many things. Maybe it is my Scottish blood that is calling out for me to return to my homeland. That is why I am so darn obsessed with something I know so little about. It also supports my obsession with Shakespeare. Hey, it's in my blood. I also have a pretty good excuse to go there now. I could do more research on that line. It only goes about ten generations prior to Malcolm III.

Mostly though, I'm just happy that I can say I'm part Scottish. It's like a dream come true.

Friday, December 7, 2007


I need a Christmas tree. Every time I go to Macey's it's almost more than I can stand to drive by the Big Lots and Rite-aid window seeing all the trees for sale. I really need a Christmas tree.

Despite redecorating our apartment a few weeks ago (which definitely did make it feel more welcoming), it is still terribly lacking in the Christmas spirit department. The two strands of white lights strung around the room hardly add any seasonal delight, and will probably stay up until Charlotte moves from the apartment whenever that happens. And the small advent calendar (which is continually being forgotten) is not nearly prominent enough.

There should be holly and mistletoe. A Christmas tree (which I believe I have already pointed out) covered with lights and glass ornaments. I'm tempted to string lights on the small bonsai money tree plant, but then it seems kind of flimsy for ornaments to hand on it. There should be music playing constantly on a (nonexistent) stereo. And Christmas movies.

I'm not going home until two days before Christmas. I'm going to miss out on all the tree decorating fun, but I'll probably be around to take it down. I miss hiking out in the mountains and cutting down a real tree. The piney smell of the tree, mmmm.

I miss the anticipation that kept me awake every night for weeks before Christmas, I can't afford that anymore. I miss having a real fire burning in the wood stove, and the whole room smelling of woodsmoke. Heck, I even miss going out in the rain to get wood for it. The rain is infinitely better than the snow! It wasn't ever even that cold.

I need a Christmas tree.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Dancing (not with the stars, but that's ok)

I'm taking a social dance class this semester. It's tons of fun. Tonight I got to go take the Medals Exam for the Foxtrot and Cha-cha, and I got this nifty little pin and a neat certificate.

The Medals Exam is basically you go, you dance, and these judges give you a score on a national level. It's pretty cool. You dance with the instructor of your dance class (or the TA, however that works out), and you hope that you can remember the Foxtrot steps because you learned them all so long ago. And you hope that your instructor (or TA) actually knows what they are doing because otherwise you are pretty much screwed. I didn't have to worry about this. My instructor is a pretty awesome guy, and he can dance (you gotta hope right? He IS teaching the class!)

So I medaled on the bronze level (for Dance 180) in the Foxtrot and the Cha-cha. And I can skip out on the Swing final. Yeah, I don't know how it works out that if you do well on those two dances you can skip out on the Swing. So now all that's keeping me from knowing I have an excellent grade in that class is the Waltz test which takes place on Monday.

Oh yeah, and just because I was already nervous about my test, I got this crazy little twitch in my eye. Because that just helps everything so much, you know? It went away as soon as I got my score. *mutters* stupid nerves . . .

Dancing makes guys hotter. Just as a note.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Mail Order

Ok, so I spent Thanksgiving at a friend's house. Mauri is going to Scotland next summer. Actually she is going to Ireland, England, Wales, and France, and will be spending a day in Edinburgh, Scotland. Can I just say that I am more jealous over that one day than I am over everything else? I mean, what is even in Scotland? Why do I have this insane obsession with Scotland? The world may never know. Let's just go with it.

So because we are crazy and weird, Mauri and I decided to see if you can get a mail order husband. Preferably from Scotland. Alas! 'Tis not possible. At least not as far as we could tell. No mail order grooms to be found, let alone Scottish ones. Sad day.

I was talking about this with Seth and Charlotte, and we pointed out that there are some definite drawbacks to buying a guy. So we decided that instead I can buy an army of mail order brides and they can be my slaves and make knock off Nikes. I don't know how we reached this decision. It was odd. Seth said I would be the Goddess of Discord and Lord of the Cobblers.

This is all very random. I told Mauri to bring me back a Scottish guy. Too bad she only has one day to find him.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

I'll Meet Your Belt and Raise You a T-shirt . . .

Last night my roommate and I were over at a guys' apartment because we were going to play game of some sort. Through the course of waiting for everyone to show up, it got to the point where it was just me and her sitting there in the apartment, with no one that lived there present. Just then, Bishop showed up looking for the engaged tenant, Mike.

Bishop: So are you just moving in here?

Me: No. We were going to play card games or something and then everyone just kind of drifted off and it ended up just being me and Char.

Bishop: Well as long as you aren't going to play Texas Hold 'em that's fine.

Thinking it was odd that he would veto one specific type of poker and not mention the others... Me: No Texas Hold 'em, OK. Can we play other kinds of poker?

Bishop: Sure, as long as you keep your clothes on!

At which point I died laughing.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Wonders of Technology

I love email. It's amazing. It's better than a letter (other than the sheer joy of getting a letter in the mail) because it's nearly instantaneous. It's better than a phone call because you can really think through what you are saying and word everything exactly right. It's better than instant messenger because there are no long pauses while you compose the perfect message. You don't have to know that the recipient is right there waiting for the message because you know they will get it eventually.

And it's great when you just get the urge to hear from someone that you haven't talked to in a while. A phone call in that situation might be a little odd, but an email? It's so easy! "How's it going? I haven't heard from you in forever! Such and such is going on in my life etc."

Not to mention that it's practically free. If you have access to a library you can have free email. Otherwise you might have to pay for the internet connection (hey I wouldn't complain about having internet!) and you can send music and videos over it. No stamps, no long waits, and no awkward pauses.

I can't wait until they can figure out how to send other stuff over the internet. Like people. Or groceries. Instantaneous travel and grocery shopping. Brilliant.

PS Some drawbacks would include that it doesn't offer the vocal tone that a face-to-face or phone conversation affords, so that does leave some speculation as to intended meaning at times. And another would be that if it's urgent you better make sure they know that it's on it's way.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

How Did This Happen?

I've been kind of down the last day or two. Here's why:

I got a wedding announcement in the mail today. At first I was excited to get it (I had been expecting it for about a month now), but after opening it, reading through it, and thinking that my friend looked really cute in the photo, I went to hang it on my fridge. I reached for a magnet and the first one I found was a picture of the Hawaii temple. It was all I could do to keep from crying. My friend isn't getting married in the temple.

How did this happen? I've been asking myself this question for the last while. How did someone so set on having everything the gospel had to offer, settle for a marriage outside of the temple, outside of the church, and an extramarital pregnancy?

It's sad. For years we talked about where we wanted to get married, which temple, and all that. So many hopes and dreams. She, our other friends, and I would jokingly say "marriage first, then kids," every time the topic of children came up. It was one of our biggest jokes as teenagers. I can't say that anymore. It brings too many sad memories with it. Memories that should be happy, but are sad because of reality.

It's sad because the idea of being pushed into a marriage, something that should be so happy and joyful, because of something so preventable, yet so significant, freaks me out. I never want to be in that situation. To feel like any part of that decision is taken away? No thanks.

It's sad because when I say something about it to my friends here, they try to be optimistic and say things like "maybe he'll join the church," but I know the odds of that. They aren't happy odds. Maybe it will happen, but it's not encouraging. We can't live our lives on those kind of odds.

It's sad because I don't know if it's going to last. She was raised by her dad and her step-mom, and saw her mom and step-dad twice a year. How will she know how to make it work? How did people with divorced parents know? How will she know how to be a mother? She's never really had one. I just wish I knew how this happened so I could fix it.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Angel Tears

I weep for the children.
The dear ones that are lost.
The soft footsteps in a dream.
The whispered kisses on a cheek.
I weep for the ones that are lost.

I weep for the fathers.
The gentle voice that is cracking.
The strong arms that are empty.
The loving hands that aren't held.
I weep for the voice that is cracking.

I weep for the mothers.
The aching hearts that are breaking.
The eyes that are empty from crying.
The yearning arms that hang low.
I weep for the hearts that are breaking.

I weep for the children.
The angel tears that show,
The love that is always given.
The ones there to break the fall.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

More Pepsi?

Today was my fourth day of work at Health Plan Operations. As I have told numerous people before, my job consists of entering numbers into a computer, sending the information to an analyst (someone with a real job) and then I take the sheet of paper that I was copying the information from and add another number, the claim number. That is the basics of my job. Can you read? Can you recognize numbers? Can you remember what F7, F3, F5, and F12 do? Then you can do my job.

Today was different. First off, we were having a Hawaiian themed lunch party today so everyone was wearing Hawaiian shirts, sarongs and leis (who's gonna wear the lie now? That's for you, Mauri). And today we sent out checks to the various hospitals and health care centers to pay for people's drug rehab, hospital stays, ear infections and bladder control problems. My new motto? Don't do drugs, rehab is expensive.

Checks were fun. I held in my hands a check for $62,000 and wished with all the fiber of my being that it was made out to me rather than Corvallis Clinic. I was also introduced to a very pleasant machine. The folding machine. It's amazing, and possibly my best friend. You turn it on, choose how you want your letters folded, and there it goes. In less than five minutes 400 sheets of paper were folded into lovely letter sized thirds. I simply added checks and stuffed the envelopes and sent them on the next step to mailing. In a conversation with a friend about how awesome the folding machine was, my friend asked, "can it fold a paper crane?" I told him that I didn't know, but that he was welcome to come and fold papers for me next week. Though I doubted he could do it as fast.

There are over fifty people working in my department, and as you can probably tell no one's job is all that riveting. People get bored easily, and they tend to deal with it in interesting ways. Whether I was too job focused the last three days to notice, or whether Friday certain inhibitions were lost I can't tell, but the three ladies that work in the back are absolutely hilarious.

Today, to break the monotony, they wrote poetry.

A walk in the woods
A bear pooped
Nobody heard.

(Someone then replied, "and that's the epitome of loneliness.")

They also decided to find how many different ways they could wear their sarongs. Then they modeled them. Later, as the shift was ending, one of my coworker's husband showed up. He started talking about sarongs and how a guy would wear one. Another coworker asked, "would you wear underwear underneath?" (honestly, where was that question coming from??) He replied, "I don't wear underwear, I wear panties." Which is something, I'm sure no one wanted to know.

That all spurred another conversation which ended with one woman laughing so hard that her Pepsi came out her nose. Aloha!

Monday, June 11, 2007

International Woman of Mystery

First off, a disclaimer. I am not usually one to follow fashion trends, or go all out for the latest style.

The other day I was in the waiting room at the hospital while my grandpa underwent surgery. I had forgotten to bring a book, or something of the sort to keep myself occupied during the long wait, so I found myself reading some sort of celebrity gossip magazine. While doing so I stumbled across a picture of an absolutely fabulous outfit. On further examination it was discovered that I had all the articles necessary to pull of said outfit, but for one item, which was easily substituted.

It was all black, consisting of a straight knee-length skirt, a turtleneck sweater, a trench coat, and a pair of black heels, which I didn't have. I had boots though.

Now, this would typically be a very wintry ensemble, but I know that living in Oregon it can easily seem like winter in the middle of June. Luckily for me an opportunity presented itself today as it managed to rain all yesterday, and continue into today. Perfect trench coat weather.

As I was driving home from church, I went past a gas station teaming with bikers. My friend and I laughed over the fact that I would almost fit right in, in my black trappings.

My mom said I looked like Mata Hari. I wonder if she realizes that Mata Hari was an exotic dancer and courtesan, accused of being a spy for the Germans during WWI. I don't think I looked like an exotic dancer, though spy might fit the bill.

I wish I could go looking like a spy all the time. That at least would add some inkling of interest into my life. Or I could always run away with the biker gang.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Mutual Corruption Society

I was talking to a friend on IM today. During our conversation we touched on the fact that we've both become corrupt. I take that back. The entire conversation was centered around our mutual corruption. Please take into account that this was not all we talked about. Also notice how we relate children's stories to our lives.

This has been edited to protect all involved parties.

friend: so, I found some three leaf clovers the other day and it made me so happy because
I can never find them on this side of Oregon
they were growing in my back yard
along with some dandelions
which are also normally rare here
now all I need to make my comfort zone here complete is daisies
me:. . . I . . .um . . .
friend: :D
Mary is now speechless
me: . . . yeeeeeeaaaaaaahhh
OK, I need to be normal, that just made me think of something I shouldn't have
friend: what?
me: well
friend: yes
me: stretching out yeah to that, made me think of Ye-Haw
friend: which is?
me: which made me think of cowboys
Can't . . . breathe . . . laughing . . . too . . . hard . . .
friend: wow
cowboys remind me of horses and unless you are recalling an especially fun time you had
falling off of a horse, I don't follow that last track on your train of thought
me: huh?
friend: cowboys?
me: what?
like why cowboys make me laugh?
friend: yes
me: oh, pictures on facebook
friend: ah ha ha
got ya
uh huh, yes
quite understandable when the cowboy happens to be sporting the emperor's best
me: you know it
probably better than the emperor's best
friend: depending on the emperor
me: considering I've always thought of the emperor as an old man
a fat old man
friend: he could have been an especially stupid jock of an emperor
what about that?
me: well, maybe
but in our case he knew he was practically naked, therefore still better, if only on the
intelligence factor
this isn't helping
I'm racking up more bad karma
friend: maybe they just messed up the story and being oblivious was his excuse for his attire

Perhaps this would be more understandable if I were to include an example of what we are talking about. This is not going to happen so I will just explain. A very interesting friend of mine borrowed a cowboy hat to use as part of his disguise during a ward activity. He dressed up in jeans and red Texas t-shirt and this hat. (We were playing Where's Waldo in the Provo Towne Centre, and he was one of the people we needed to find). At any rate, later on when left to his own devices he got the brilliant idea of dressing up as the Naked Cowboy from Manhattan. For those of you that don't know the Naked Cowboy is a guy that goes around wearing nothing but cowboy boots, a cowboy hat, and briefs. He carries a guitar. My friend plays guitar. He also plays water polo on the intramural team.

At any rate, this friend has very little shame. He dressed up like the Naked Cowboy, wearing boots, a hat, and a yellow speedo. He then got some friends to take pictures of him dressed this way. One of those pictures is now his profile pic on Facebook. Needless to say I was quite startled to get on Facebook one morning and be greeted with four or so pictures with a caption saying "____ has been tagged in four pictures." That is what we were referring to in our conversation.

I have been corrupted. I came to BYU, this nice, safe, Mormon school, and I've become corrupted. Very little that anyone could say or do would shock me now. That is all.

On a side note. I talked to another friend today and she said, "your life is like a real live drama." I told her it was more like a tragicomedy. The bad end unhappily, the good end unluckily, and it's all played off for laughs for those observing. Yes, yes, I know. Sad, but true.

me: with friends like you who needs enemies?
friend: like I said, this is a mutual corruption society

I need to write on here way more often.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Answering Machine

I answer the phone in my apartment a lot. And the fact of the matter is that it's very rarely for me. We also have caller ID so I could realistically screen all the calls and not answer the phone when my roommates are gone. Then the machine could get it and I wouldn't have to remember to tell someone that someone called them. But I don't, and I don't really know why.

The funny thing is that when it's for Carly she usually isn't there, so her sister (that's who it usually is) ends up calling her cell phone anyway. Why not call the cell phone first and then calling the apartment if she is home?

I don't really know how to simplify things when it's for Charlotte, because she doesn't have her cell phone with her half the time. She is a recent convert to the cell phone world. We tell her that she's going to get kidnapped or something and we won't know because we'll try to call her phone to find out where she is and hear her phone ring in the other room.

Then there are my friends that don't have cell phones. It's always really odd to pick up the phone and have it be for Seth or Pavio. I mean, really, they don't live here. Well, Seth practically does. Sometimes I want to tell Sabrina, Seth's sister, that I know he's here a lot but please tell me this is the last number you tried. And if someone is trying to find Pavio and he's not with Alex or Mike or at his apartment then he's not here either. And both Alex and Mike have cell phones.

I know the phone isn't for me, and I don't like talking on the phone, but I still jump up when it rings. I'll be hanging out with friends and the phone will ring and I'll jump up saying, "it's not for me."

I've come to expect that with the apartment phone. And it really doesn't matter that much because I've got my cell phone, and anyone that wants to talk to me usually calls that first.

BUT . . .

Saturday I was on the way to Los Hermanos, a Mexican restaurant. I was riding with Stephanie, Emily, and Scott. My cell phone rang and it said it was Alex who was riding in the car behind us. I answer it and am met with silence. So I say "hello" again and I hear Mike's girlfriend say, "can I talk to Scott?"

It boils down to Scott making faces at Mike, who was driving, and making "call me" motions to Reagan, Mike's girlfriend. So she did, but Scott doesn't have a cell phone either. So she used Alex's phone to call mine. I handed the phone to Scott. And then she hung up on him.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Move over Abby

Dear Abby this, dear Abby that. Sometimes I think I could give Abby a run for her money. The things I get asked for advice on would probably stump even that renowned guru. You might not think it possible, but the number of things I have been asked about range from what someone might like for their birthday to marriage and pregnancy.

I kid you not. I have been asked for advice about:
Birthday presents
Christmas presents
Telling parents she is moving out
How to know if a boy likes her
How to know if a girl likes him
Should she go to class or finish homework
How to flirt
What to do if he likes a girl that doesn't like him back
How to get over someone
If she is being a brat or not
Telling parents about car trouble that happened when her boyfriend was driving
Should she like someone or not
Should she play tennis with him
Should she go out with him
Should he go out with her
Long distance relationships
If she should tell him that she likes him
How to tell someone that he's not interested
Should she tell her parents about who she's dating
She hates her roommates, what should she do
His roommate smells like fish, how can he get rid of the smell
What should they say in whatever situation
She's pregnant, should she tell her parents, and if so how
She's engaged, should she tell her parents
Is she being stupid
She's confused about her boyfriend, what should she do
How do you spell . . .
Should she give her baby up for adoption
Wanting a divorce
Talking to parents about whatever really
Self-confidence issues
Compulsive lying
What shoes should she wear
Dating in general
What book to read
Why does my little brother hate him
Sharing the gospel
Is it silly if she gets married next year
The list could go on and on.

All in all, I don't mind being asked for advice. It's just that I find it funny when I'm asked about things I have absolutely no clue about. I have been on one date in my entire life, so that should pretty much nix any relationship advice. I depend quite strongly on spell-check. I never know what to buy people for Christmas or birthdays. I'm not the greatest missionary. The only things on this list that I feel even somewhat qualified to advise on is the shoes thing and the book thing. And maybe about if they are being stupid or not, I'm usually pretty good at that one.

The most frustrating thing about it is that I feel like despite my inexperience with most of these things, I feel like I give pretty sound advice. Which would be great if the people asking for advice would actually take it to heart. Unfortunately, I find that usually they ignore my brilliant advice and then find out later that it was the exact right thing to do. Of course as far as what book to read or which shoes to wear goes, it doesn't really matter, but on the big things?

All I'm saying is that if you are pregnant, then yes you should tell your parents. They didn't mean it when they said they would kick you out if you ever got pregnant without being married first. Yes you should tell your parents that you are getting married. Yes you are being a brat when you ask for a second iPod for Christmas because you want a pink one. When you are out with your boyfriend and the car hits a rock in the road that dents your frame, oil pan, and gives your car a flat, you should not tell your parents that it was your boyfriend driving at the time.

I mean, sometimes it is better if they just don't know.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Moonlight Madness

My roommate, Char, and I were talking a few months ago about hiking the "Y." We decided that it would be so cool to go at night, preferably when the moon is out. Being the forward thinking people we are we set it for March. It should be thawed out by then right? Well . . . no actually, but at least it wouldn't be quite as cold.

We mention our plan to our friends, Seth, Alex, and Pavio. Set the day for the first full moon, (I think there is a second one this month). As fate would have it, it happened to be on a Saturday. Of course, our plans are never set in stone, so we are unsure if it will actually happen until 9:30 pm the night of the adventure. Pavio isn't able to make it, but the other four of us pile into Char's little white car and we drive to the parking lot beneath the "Y."

The parking lot is pretty full of cars, something we think to be quite odd. The four of us set off, past the fence and onwards up the icy and snow covered trail. I'm not a particularly fast hiker. I like to take my time and enjoy the view and the beauty, but my friends are determined to get to the top as fast as possible, so they keep encouraging me to walk faster.

About fifteen minutes into our hike we pass some people on their way back down. "You are almost there," they tell us.

Fifteen minutes later:
"It's not that much further," says Seth, the only experience "Y" mountain hiker among us.

Four more switchbacks later, he says it again. "It's really not that much further." The rest of us are getting tired of hearing this, as the trail is getting steeper with each turn we make.

Finally, the trail splits into two sections. It looks like one trail goes the more direct way and the other continues with the switchbacks. We opt for the direct route as we are all sick of the blasted switchbacks at this point.

We find ourselves at a dead end. We look around in the moonlight and are able to make out a trail straight up from where we are. The snow is several inches deep with a nice crust on the top. We climb straight up.

Several yards and a few near death experiences later we find ourselves at the actual trail. Looking down to where we just climbed from we realize that we just hiked the "Y", literally hiked straight up the "Y".

We sit there on the trail, the warmth that we produced while climbing slowly slips away as we eat granola bars and drink water. All of Provo lies before us, lights and cars beautifully spread out across the valley.

My inner wolf calls to me and I take the opportunity to howl at the moon, (this is actually a running joke with me and my friends. They say I am a werewolf because I always know when the full moon is. I don't know about that, but I do like the moon).

The trip back down is faster. I am in the back for a while, but only to judge how slick the trail is. When the path is clear of ice and snow I let myself run down the frozen trail. The moonlight casts shadows across the ground, dancing in the brush and making patterns in the snow. The air is cool and crisp, but a hat becomes too warm just as it did on the way up. We pass another group of people, and we pass on the message of "you're almost there." This time at least they are a lot closer than when we heard it.

The parking lot is still full, which we can't figure out since we've only seen two other groups of people, each only big enough to fill one car. We climb back into the car, and drive back home.

It has been a night of moonlight and fun.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Cleaning Check Update

We had our re-check yesterday. She walked through and was in an out in two minutes. Also, we found our elusive cookie sheet. It was under the stove. So maybe something good did come of this.

As a random thought, anyone that hasn't ever seen Mystery Science Theatre should check it out. It is weird, random, and hilarious.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Spite and Malice

My apartment had cleaning checks today. We were supposed to have them yesterday, but since most of us were not getting back from the long weekend until Monday night I called to reschedule on Friday. The conversation went something like this:

Me: Hi! I'm calling from apartment 21 to reschedule our cleaning checks. It's just at a really bad time and I was wondering if we could change them.

Cleaning check person: I don't understand. You only have cleaning checks once a month so I don't understand why it should be a problem.

Me: Oh it's not that, it's just that most of are going out of town and we won't be back until late Monday night, and then we all have morning classes on Tuesday.

CCP: (sound of annoyance) Well, I can charge you the five dollar recheck fee and come on Wednesday.

Me: (And I'm thinking, who does she think she is?) Um, no. I don't see why we should have to pay a fee. It says right here on the sheet that if there is a problem with the time we just have to call and reschedule at least 24 hours in advance, and this is well over 24 hours. So I don't know what the problem is.

CCP: (Very annoyed voice) Well, I am going to have to call you back in about an hour. Is that alright?

Me: Yes that's fine.

Fifteen minutes later she calls back and very pleasantly says that she can come and check our apartments on Wednesday. Great.

So I make sure that my assignments are done before she's supposed to show up on Wednesday. My room is clean, the bathroom is clean and the floor is vacuumed. She shows up and goes through and . . . fails us all!

Please examine the facts. Our apartment is cleaner that it has been for the last two cleaning checks. Checks that we passed without a problem. Here are the reasons we failed.

Carly failed because the drawers in the refrigerator need to be wiped down. Um, right. At least the fridge isn't full of nasty food like it was for our last check.

Charlotte didn't actually fail, but that was because she actually grabbed the wrong cleaning assignment sheet. (There are four cleaning assignments, and only three people living here. Char accidentally grabbed the other bathroom assignment.) So Char passed, even though her bathroom didn't actually get cleaned this time around. The toilet wasn't cleaned because we don't have a toilet brush. I cleaned my toilet. I cleaned it with a paper towel, actually reaching my hand into the toilet to scrub off the grime. (Here's a question. Why is it impossible to get cold water out of the tap, but the water in the toilet is freezing?)

The extra cleaning assignment (the one that was really Charlotte's) failed because the oven drawer didn't get pulled out so the floor underneath could be cleaned. Never mind that the oven itself hasn't been cleaned since before we've lived here, the area under the oven wasn't clean.

And I failed because the bathtub wasn't clean. There's something you have to understand about these tubs. They are impossible to get clean. There is a layer of grime that is permanently embedded into the surface of the tub. I've spent hours trying to clean the tub before and it ends up looking about the same as when I only spend a few minutes on it. It isn't any dirtier than it's been since we moved in. Granted it looks dirty, but the same person does our cleaning checks every month, so you'd think they would remember that it hasn't ever looked any better.

Let's take a trip back to December of last year. A few weeks before finals we had our last cleaning check of the year. Now, we all somehow managed to forget what day they were supposed to be on, so when the person showed up our apartment was a disaster. I had clothing scattered all across the floor in my room, and my bed was a disaster. The bathroom hadn't even been wiped down, let alone scrubbed.

We passed. There was one comment about the cleaning checks in January being harder, but that was it. We passed and no one had really done anything.

I think it's all just spite. We inconvenienced someone. Heaven forbid they walk over to the apartment on a different day. Never mind that the Riv hasn't held up their end of the deal either. We were promised a hot tub. We went without one the entire time. They are just finally starting to put one in. They charge us $10 a month for a phone we don't use and Internet that is supposed to be high speed but moves at a snails pace and knocks us offline.

But whatever. It's mostly just annoying. If I had known we were going to fail anyway, I would have slept in today.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

An explanation of the title

In greek mythology, Eris is the goddess of discord. One day while watching Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas with some friends I made the comment that "Eris is so cool. I wish I was the goddess of discord!" And it kind of stuck. So every time I make a comment that is more unusual or disturbing than normal I get the response "yeah, well you're the goddess of discord, so no surprises there."

Also, as to the blog address, Kallisti is greek for "to the fairest one." It was the apple that Eris offered at the wedding of Peleus and Thetis (the eventual parents of Achilles) to the most beautiful one present. This led up to an argument between Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite over which of them was the most beautiful. Now, the other gods were smart enough to keep out of it but the goddesses managed to get Paris (the idiot) to answer by each bribing him with something. Hera offered him political power, Athena promised skill in battle, and Aphrodite promised him the most beautiful woman in the world. Unfortunately, the most beautiful woman in the world was Helen, who just so happened to be already married to Menelaus of Sparta.

Too bad bad Paris didn't make the connection that Menelaus' brother was Agememnon (slayer of men is the nickname this dude gets). Also he failed to make the connection that getting the most beautiful woman in the world doesn't do you a lot of good if you don't have the political power or the skill in battle to keep her. I mean, honestly either of those choices would have been better. But really, the gods had the right idea to just keep out of the whole thing. Because, yeah, you might end up on the good side of one goddess, but you just made two really powerful enemies.

So Troy was destroyed. And it all started with Kallisti, thrown in by the Goddess of Discord.

Oh yeah, and I hope you are happy Jen. Hopefully I will come up with enough to write about to have this blog be worth it.