First of all, the other day, I was sitting out in public, minding my own business, and this random dude says to me...
Him: What's your name?
Me: (I tell him my first name).
Him: What is that...Indian?
Me: Well, it's Hindi, yes.
Him: I was given the Indian name Suresh.
Me: HA HA HA HA HA HA.
Him: Oh. I guess that means that you don't care.
Isn't that a weird conversation? I am not one to just bust out laughing in people's faces when they are talking to me. Ok maybe I am a little. But especially when it's something like THAT. His Indian name? This ain't no Dances with Wolves, Mister. My kind of Indian? We don't bestow names on people like that. Can you imagine? "Ah, yes Nordic Boy. You have brought my household honor. Henceforth, I shall knight you...Deepak." hahahahahaha. (That, by the way, might only be a joke that's funny if you're Indian. So hi, four Indian readers, that one was for you.) It just don't work that way with us. You have to be born in to get one of our names. Ooh la la, we are so keeping the names behind the velvet rope. And then? The response to the laughing? "I guess that means you don't care." What a funny thing to say. It made me laugh more.
He probably thought I was touched in the head. Which, let's face it.
Second of all, I have been staying up way too late this week, watching tivo'd speeches from the Democratic Convention. What a nerd. A sleepy, sleepy nerd.
Third of all, last weekend I realized that the sunny, warm, perfect Seattle summer days, they are numbered. It is dead summer walking. So BioGirl and I, we decided to get out there and enjoy it goddammit.
We got on a ferry boat and rode a half hour across the Sound to get to an island, just to go somewhere different for lunch. The island we went to was Bainbridge. It's very difficult for me to go to Bainbridge Island without singing the Ben Bridge jingle, by the way. Instead of the "diamond people" I sing the "island people." I is so clever I should have my own reality show, shouldn't I? I could never live on Bainbridge or else I would be singing that jingle all the livelong day. On the way there, we had a serious discussion about how, if you were a doctor like McDreamy, you could really live across the Sound and be expected to get to work if there was a dire emergency. Like you are really going to be hopping the ferry boat back and forth when people need their skullmeats worked on, right? There are lots of islands in the Puget Sound, and Bainbridge is the most accessible by ferry, so we figured of all the places McDreamy supposedly lives, it's got to be Bainbridge. We decided he must have an apartment in town too or something, because it's just not practical. Let's just put aside the fact that he is a fictional character and that we are mainly really annoyed by that show in general for many reasons, too numerous to go into here, and we just may have a point, don't you think?
Anyway. As we wrestled with these great questions of our times, we wandered through the ferry...
and then out on the deck, where we discovered that we were in a ferry Nascar (Nasferry?) race with another boat right next to us...
and we said goodbye to our city...
and hello to an island where fancy people live...
where we ate at a restaurant that was suspiciously full of only women customers...
no dudes allowed?
Walked around, and spent a little money on our respective favorite things (BioGirl got an ice cream cone, and I bought a dress from Sweet Deal).
And then headed home.
And on the way home, we sat in the ferry, and looked out through the window to the deck at the people...
and made up imaginary conversations that these people might have been having with each other. It was like a silent film where we provided the dialogue. A very snarky silent film.
Her: If only we could get paid for this.
Her: Like, I wish it could be our job to sit behind a glass and watch people, and like, make up dialogue for them.
Her: We're so good at it. We're funny.
Me: Would it have to be us sitting behind glass?
Her: Well, yeah.
Me: That's the part that I'm not sure about.
Her: I love that THAT'S the part of the plan that you're not sure about.
First of all, the other day, I was sitting out in public, minding my own business, and this random dude says to me...
There's this shopping center in my town. It's pretty standard in that there's a Gap store and a Barnes and Noble and you can't spit without hitting a Starbucks (seriously, enough with the Starbucks, you crazy coffee drinkers), but there are a few little local independent shops there too, which is much groovier. A few months ago, a new store opened up. The storefront was pretty tiny, and the window had a display of little colored votive candle holders. All different colors. Pretty. I thought it was probably a candle/incense type store, like Illuminations. Or maybe a little home decor store. Something like that.
The next time I went to that shopping center, (which was weeks after the first time), I walked by there, and the window display was pretty much the same. Votive candle holders. Arranged a little differently than the first time, but still.
Then, I went in. And you know what? That store is ALL votive candle holders. That's it. Nothing else. Rows and rows of the SAME THING. No different sizes, even. No different shapes. Just different colors. THAT'S IT.
I walked around the store, peering around the corners. What else is there? I wanted to ask. You can't have a whole store full of just glass votive candle holders. That's nuts. That's like having a whole entire store of just Ticonderoga No. 2 pencils. Or something. You have got to have something else. A tapered candle holder maybe? Or a tealight candle holder? A different size? Anything?
Nope. Nothing. Just votive candle holders. All exactly the same. In any color you want them. And you know how much each of them costs?
FORTY FRICKIN' BUCKS.
Some of them are fifty bucks, although I couldn't tell why the extra ten dollars on the same exact votive candle holder. Are some colors ritzier?
Lookit, I am not trying to hate. This is an independently owned, local business, and the people who make these things make them by hand. These are all things that I love. Things I want to support. These are precisely the reasons that I am dangerously addicted to the Etsy website.
But really? Does this sound weird to anyone else?
First of all, how is this business even sustainable? How many forty-dollar votive candle holders is one person really going to buy? And how many people are going to drop a Benjamin on a pair of these puppies? A Benjamin! A whole Benjamin!
Apparently a lot of people. Because I looked it up (librarian!) and these things have got lots of media attention. They were featured on Martha Stewart. And many other places. There is hella hype about the votive candle holders. People love these things. And are buying them.
Another thing? They are not votive candle holders. They are "glassybaby." That, according to the website, is both the singular and the plural title of what these things are. So, you can buy one glassybaby. Or you can buy ten glassybaby (goodbye four hundred smackers). That's what they are. Don't call them candle holders.
I'm sorry that I am going on and on about this but isn't it FASCINATING?
Also! In the store, they had a display. The display was like, all these candle holders (or glassybaby, but I feel like a dumbass calling them that) doing different things. Like, one of them had a candle in it. Duh. Another one had a couple of pencils in it. Another one had some jewelry in it. Another one had some pennies in it. It was as if the person who put together the display was saying "look! So innovative! You can use it as a pencil cup! And a candle holder! And a change jar! And a place to keep your jewelry!"
Come ON. Glassybaby cannot possibly be saying that they invented the idea that a cup is something you use to PUT THINGS IN. Are people really not smart enough to know that a cup can be used in such a manner?
Again, I don't mean to hate. The website looks very lovely and I am sure the person who owns this is very nice indeed. And so I mean this in the nicest way possible:
That shit is WEIRD.
Am I wrong?
I don't know what is wrong with me but I can never type in my passwords right. I have various passwords and they are all different, but for some reason I always have to type them in twice because the first time I always get a tremor (of excitement? fear? rage?) or something. Does this happen to anyone else? Just with passwords? Usually my typing is pretty good, even though I never took "keyboarding" in high school. Do they still teach that in high school? It seems really old school, that whole idea. Especially when I am in the library and seeing little elementary school kids typing up a storm with their teeny tiny fingers like they are scary robot children. If you ever wanted to play a practical joke on me, send a little kid into the library and have them type really fast while saying "beep boop beep" or some such, with a glassy Kardashian stare. I will freak out, maybe noticeabley, if you're lucky.
I am so helpful, giving you advice like that.
So I was going to try and post a photo essay yesterday to join in on Photo Essay Tuesday, but I just can't be bogged down with scheduling my posts like that. It's a wonder I can get into my blog at all (it's password protected you see) and spewing forth such tasty golden blog niblets such as hey-I-can't-type-my-password-it-is-so-riveting is just about all I can do.
So it's not Tuesday. And I don't have any new photos to share. (Does Photo Essay Tuesday have to be current photos? I don't get the rules). But it is Thursday! And I have totally out of date photos! How's that?
Check this out.
This photo is awesome for one reason. That reason is that it was taken MOMENTS before all hell broke loose. I am talking seconds. Can you feel the tension?
First of all, the players. That's me in the green t-shirt there. I would say I was about three. Even so, I remember this moment like it was yesterday because I am an idiot-savant (heavy on the idiot) when it comes to childhood memories, as you well know. The girl right next to me that looks like she is about to explode with wrath was named Seema. The other girl was named Deepa. I think they were sisters, although I am not sure about that. I don't remember the boy's name. We were in Seema/Deepa's house in Fiji. My family was there for the summer and their parents were friends of my parents.
When you're a little tiny kid in Fiji, and your parents take you to someone's house, you are thrown into the middle of whatever little kid gang that household has. It doesn't matter if you have never seen those kids before in your life, you are told to "go play" and the grownups leave you to go about your business, pretty much unattended. Even if the house that you are visiting doesn't have kids, there are inevitabley some kids somewhere in the neighborhood, and those kids will have heard through the village grapevine that new playmate meat has arrived, and they will show up and you are expected to run off and play with them. Saying no thanks is not an option.
Most of the time I was ok with this arrangement, as any chance I had to get away from my brothers who were just looking for ways to terrorize me was fine with me. But this time? I was kind of leery of Seema and Deepa. They seemed...off. Look at that photo. Look at the fear in my eyes. "Hey photo-taker," I am thinking, "I am trying to act nonchalant but on my signal let's you and me get out of here before these two go apeshit and wipe the floor with me."
Photo taker (who must have been my mom or dad) was not picking up what I was putting down. They turned around and left the room. And as soon as they did? THOSE FUCKERS WENT NUTS. I distinctly remember that Deepa wanted the ribbon out of my hair. And when I said I didn't know how to untie it, she started to beat the crap out of me.
You think that's bad? Well Seema wanted a piece of the action too, and unlucky for me, Seema was a BITER. She bit my face! MY FACE, people. Like Hannibal Lechter. I don't remember yelling anything out, but in my imagination when I remember it, I picture myself saying something like "NOT THE FACE! NOT THE FACE!"
Little kid violence, people. What is up with that?? It's right there, under the surface. Next time someone tries to tell you about the innocence of children, feel free to refer them to this oh-so-cute photo and tell them about my face being the main course in this buffet of pain.
Apparently (although I don't remember this part), I broke free of this peewee melee and ran off to find the grownups. "Sanctuary!" I yelled at them. Ok, no I didn't, but that's only because I didn't know that word back then.
When my parents tell this story (which always comes up when this photo is seen by anyone in my family), they always talk about how I came tearing into the room screaming "Deepa hit me and Seema bit me! Deepa hit me and Seema bit me!" and this makes both my parents, usually the dearest, sweetest, most gentle parents anyone could ask for, almost cry with laughter. "It was like a siren! A rhyming siren! A siren POEM!" they laugh.
I admit I find this ridiculously funny too. Which is kind of messed up.
But that photo! I can't help it. It's funny.
Can I just tell you that my co-worker has crowned me with the nickname The Queen of Calm? I love it! The Queen of Calm. You all may find that hard to believe as I am kind of spazzy in my writings here, but in person I am way tranquil. Really. Why am I getting the feeling that you don't believe me? I am calm. I AM CALM, GODDAMMIT.
Anyway. I just like the nickname. And I really am calm a lot of the time plus it's better than being the Queen of Ridonkulous, which would also be quite valid.
Still though, I am having a hard time thinking about something to blog about, other than the fact that my ovaries are a buncha assholes (hi Blue Soup, I know you feel me on that), so let's talk about me doing something stupid, how about that? I know, I know, there is no END to these stories. And believe me, what I have told you about so far? Tip o' the iceberg, laddies.
I got a little Irish there. Didja notice? See, the stupid just keeps on coming.
A long time ago, like many years ago, before becoming a librarian was a twinkle in my eye, I worked at an urban college that was pretty small. Small enough to where it kind of reminded me of high school, except unlike my high school, people actually did their homework, were engaged with academia, and didn't hit each other on the back of the neck and yell out "neck respect!" when they wanted to really burn someone. Since I was on staff at this school I got to take classes there. One class I took was a philosophy class and it was taught by a very nice, very smart, very kind professor. Let's call him Frances Bacon. Frances and I bonded a little bit, as I was really geeked out by philosophy at the time and he was quite young as professors go and so we felt maybe a little bit like contemporaries and we would do things like have these long conversations in the hallway about riveting things like whether or not one could find principles of Wittgenstein in the movie RoboCop (I am not kidding, we really talked about that once).
I have to insert here that there were no (as far as I am aware) amorous tingly feelings emanating from either of us and although we were friendly and talking about very sexy things like RoboCop there was nothing at all torrid about our interactions. He was just nice. A little awkward and shy, but I think we would have become outside-of-school friends eventually. If only I hadn't effed it all to shite.
The road to ruin began when my friend Palindrome came to visit me from the Midwest. I took her to school with me and she sat in on my Philosophy class. Or maybe she just was walking around campus with me and I pointed Frances out to her and told her that I thought he was cool. Something like that. The important thing to note was that Palindrome was single at the time and she thought Frances was cute, which yes, he totally was. Too bad she was leaving to go back home in the next couple of days or I am sure they would have made beautiful philosophy together.
Palindrome went home. This was also a time in my life where she and I emailed each other constantly. Like once a day for sure. And most of those emails were nonsensical inside jokes that meant nothing to anyone but us. One of the running jokes? She started to ask about Frances. She would say things like "How is my future boyfriend Frances? Do you think he noticed me? He would totally be hot in bed, you can just tell with those cute geeky types." To which I would reply "Oh totally. He would make your glasses steam up for sure. But he would probably want to talk dirty about attributes and modes while you were doing it though."
Of course as the semesters went by, the joke continued, and we made up dirtier and dirtier scenarios about Frances, always with some weird philosophical punchline involved. Of course. That's just how I be. This all culminated in one email where I wrote a dirty poem about Frances. And my friend. And maybe Kant too. You getting the picture?
I thought my poem was so genious, that I printed it out that afternoon to take it home and show my other friend.
You probably know how this story is going to end, but I'll go ahead and end it anyway. Just so you can be extra impressed with my idiocy.
On my way out that night, I walked by Frances' office. I happened to remember that I had an article that maybe he would be interested in. Hey! I'll just slip that article I have here, in my hand, under his door. Because I am so nice. And so thoughtful.
I slipped the article under his door, went home, looked through my stuff, and COULDN'T FIND MY POEM.
That's weird. Where's my poem? I printed it out all specifical so as to make all my friends laugh with me.
You guessed her, Chester. My poem? Was lying there, in the dark, on the floor of Frances' office. The article that I meant to slide under the door? In my bag.
Poor Frances. To imagine what it must have been like, to arrive at his office the next morning, see the paper on the floor, pick it up, SEE MY NAME ON THE TOP, and then read the poem. Sometimes I lie awake at night and think about that. You know, when I'm in the mood to die of shame.
Frances never really talked to me again after that. I was at a party once where he was, and I distinctly saw him look at me, do an aboutface and then march away almost in a sprint. What could I do? I just had to eat it.
Maybe I should be the Queen of Ridonkulous after all.
When I was growing up in Flint, Michigan, that is the only Flint-centric thing I remember anyone saying. Flintoids Forever! People who are from Flint tend to have a weirdly strong loyalty to it, myself included. But to be honest, it's not the easiest place to have a pride-filled slogan about. What are we supposed to say? Flint! It's where Bob Eubanks was spawned! Or how about Flint: we make cars, or we used to, anyway! Or how about Flint, remember when we had that awesome sit-down strike?
There are people out there trying their best to come up with something better.
There are those that celebrate...our area code.
Hey, why not? It's a DAMN FINE area code!
There are those that celebrate...our population!
This one makes me strangely nostalgic for some reason.
There are those that celebrate...the fact that we live in a place shaped like an appendage!
It's us and Italy, yo. Do people from Italy point at their legs to show where they live?
But a lot of them? Are like this.
Or like this...
And my personal favorite.
I so totally need this one. It's SO ME.
On the phone...
Me: Did you get your hairdid today?
BioGirl: Yeah. She blew out my hair straight.
BioGirl: I mean, it is straight. Super straight. Like, Crystal Gayle straight.
I'll take awesomely outdated references for $500, Alex.
"Cheddar Cheeses and Ocean Breezes..." --Caption of a flyer advertising the Oregon Coast, which does indeed offer up the heady mixture of Pacific Ocean waves and dairy farms.
Loading up the car in the city with all the essentials. (Beachy clothes, lots of tunes, and Smart Puffs).
After lunching in Portland, we stop off at the Tillamook Dairy...
where you can watch the cheese being made as if on Mister Rogers' Picture Picture.
And enjoy fresh ice cream in an extremely scenic parking lot.
Add in some random pit stops where we wander around small towns on the way...
which totally pays off when we find something called "Dave's Beaver Service."
and we all run over to it to take pictures and giggle in a very mature way and then postulate theories on what services exactly Dave would be able to provide, especially with that big squeegee on the sign there.
Arrive with trepidation at the beach house that I was totally responsible for reserving and then breathe a sigh of relief when it isn't a shithole that my friends will kick my ass for getting...
And when you step outside the door, it looks batshit beautiful.
And once you walk over the dune, you just want to run around all Chariots of Fire style.
And there's a big effing rock in the ocean just giving you the finger each morning.
Here's Neighbor B (still a bit sleep deprived), Baby Neighbor (the sleep depriverer), and that's BioGirl on the side there, who by the looks of it, has been lasagna deprived.
While BioGirl and Neighbor J knitted, read and laptopped...
Nordic Boy and I spent our time doing much more important things...
We played a lot of pool too.
We also were outside a bunch, where we saw things like this come right out of the misty sea like a Decemberists song.
During low tide, the intertidals made us all walk with our heads to the ground...
where things are super sparkly...
and--what a coincidence!- we have a marine biologist in our midst to tell us what the hell we are looking at.
To be continued...
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