Monday, March 22, 2010

"Everybody shaves so there will be plenty of flavors."

I love doing musical theater!!! I'm totally going to keep doing this, because I've been having a blast. Last week turned out to be easier and less stressful than I expected (helped along by Shane, who did things for me like making sure there was a hot dinner waiting for me when I had only 20 minutes to eat before rushing off to rehearsal) and each of the performances has been great. I was actually more nervous for the dress rehearsal than I was for opening night.
Shane is not a fan of musical theater, however, so all last week he kept asking, "Do I have to go?" Well, yes, because you're going to support me and I'm getting you a free ticket. I kept telling him he'd like it, it's not like a Rogers and Hammerstein musical (which I love, but are not Shane's style; but that's what he was thinking of, I'm sure) and it's funny. He was unconvinced, but came for opening night with James and Lucy. And loved it. By intermission he was laughing and telling me how wonderful it was. Yay! If we can get someone like Shane to enjoy it, we've done our jobs well. (It also sparked several debates, such as how many pies our cat would make. Don't ask. It's sick, I know.) I feel like I played my best for opening night, too. Not that most of our mistakes are things the audience would notice. Also, a good rule with performing is to never admit mistakes. Everything is for effect.
I got to go for my first bike ride of the year yesterday, which pleased me. I wasn't planning to, either. I went to Fred's in the morning to get groceries and stuff, and ended up forgetting one important thing (contact solution). Of course, I realized this when I was pulling into the driveway, and really didn't want to drive back over there. But I'd noticed that all the sidewalks have been clearing up (it's been in the forties during the day) so I pulled out my bike. It showed me just how out of shape I am! I'm not sore today or anything (I would be crying pathetically if a 1/2 hour bike ride made me sore!) but it was rather slow going. Of course, that wasn't helped by the fact that my bike tires are almost bald, so I was cornering carefully.
I think I want to buy a road bike this summer. The bike I have is crappy, and I got it for free from a friend who moved. And since I almost exclusively bike during the summer, it would be worth it to have something nice. We'll see how poor I'm feeling, though.
I'm withdrawing from my classes today. I realized last week that I already took one of them, but at the community college I went to. The other, due to missed classes from being sick and Sweeney, I'm hopelessly behind on. And it's turning out to be not that much fun anyway. What's the point of taking a class after I've graduated if it's not fun or worthwhile? If it wasn't for the fact that I'm so behind I would have seen it through to the end, but as it is I'm totally lost and have more work than I could possibly catch up on. Which sucks. Oh well. That's life. Maybe now I'll learn not to over-commit myself.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

"'You are what you eat' is a truism hard to argue with...."

I love my weekends!! Have I mentioned that enough yet? Last week was spring break, so it was super slow at the library. I think our average was maybe five or six people per day. Ick. But at least Friday was a holiday, so I had a lovely three-day weekend.
Friday I woke up, ready to get a few things done and then relax. Which I did. Lucy and I went to the gym, then to Fred Meyer to do a little bit of shopping. After putting the groceries away at home, I laid down in bed again and turned on a T.V. show (lately it's been "Good Eats" with Alton Brown, a fantastic cooking show). Anyway, at about 4:30 Shane said, "Hey, what time was Pepper's vet appointment?" Crap! I knew I was forgetting something, and I'd missed it by an hour. So I called them, and got another appointment for this Friday, when I'm taking my personal day off. (The reason for that will be apparent later.)
Anyway, Saturday was the day Shane, Dustin and Al were planning to go to Anchorage to see the Star Wars exhibit that was in town. (I declined going because of the expense--I have some dental work that needs to get done later this month that will be expensive even after insurance. Yuck.) So we stayed up until 2 a.m. with James, even though Shane and the guys were planning to leave at 5. He apparently didn't get any real sleep that night, just lying down for an hour before getting up to make coffee, breakfast, and to shower. I vaguely recall saying goodbye to him when the others showed up to get him. Anyway, when it was just starting to get light (about 6 a.m.) I got a call and thought, "Please don't be Shane." It was Shane. So my next thought was, "Please just have forgotten to do something or turn something off." Nope. "Hey, something's wrong with the car. The coolant is boiling over. Can you come get us?" I dressed as fast as I could, let the dog come with me, and rushed off to get them. In my haste, I didn't really dress for the weather. We're getting into the pre-Breakup weather where it's lovely and warm-ish during the day (10-20 above) and well below zero at night. Yeah, it was -20 when I went to get them. (What could make coolant boil over at that temp?!) The poor guys didn't have the advantage of even our truck's crappy heater (which gets less cold at these temperatures, rather than warm) and had to sit there in the cold, waiting for me. Al had to stay there the longest, because he had to wait for the tow truck. But I took Shane and Dustin back to Dustin's house to get his car so they could keep going. Luckily, no more mishaps. It took me forever to warm up when I went back to bed, though. Pepper, wonderful little space heater that she is, just wasn't enough and I clearly needed an outside heat source. So for the first time since moving into this place, I pulled out the electric blanket. (A couple days later, talking in my sleep, I asked Shane to get it for me. When he asked where I'd put it I told him, "Back in the refrigerator, of course.")
When I woke up again later (11-ish) I was ready to get things done. The night before I'd gotten a new bookshelf from Fred Meyer's (Shane's parents birthday gift to me) so I set that up and re-arranged some of my books. It's actually fuller than I would have expected. Probably within the next year or year and a half it will be full, and I'll be cramming books in wherever they'll fit, again. Oh well. Lovely books!
After that, having a gift card, I went to Barnes and Noble to get some more books to go on my new shelves. I got three books: American Lion, The Omnivore's Dilemma, and In Defense of Food. I also got made fun of by the girl I asked to help me find them. (I could not for the life of me remember the authors.) Anyway, I gave her the titles and, after seeing the subject matter, she told me, "Sounds thrilling." Wow. Way to judge me for buying books that are educational! Whatever. (I actually saw her earlier today on campus. She's a student.)
After that I decided to run to the hardware store next door just to get some small nails. I got distracted by the garden section and ended up buying a couple of new pots and a blueberry plant. They can't overwinter here, so I've potted it inside, I'll plant it outside over the summer, and then bring it back into the garage for next winter. But blueberries! Yum. I'm also going to try to go blueberry picking this summer. My dad warned me to bring bear bells, though. Which are just bells, but you wear them to warn black bears of your presence.
My last errand of the day was to stop at Gulliver's Books (where I have another gift card, which hasn't been used yet) to turn in some school books for credit (the ones they wouldn't take were sent to the literacy council, a nonprofit) and pre-order a book I've been waiting months for which comes out this week.
Unfortunately, I can't read it for a little while because life is too crazy. I am reading "The Omnivore's Dilemma", but that's not as engrossing as I'm sure this other book will be. ("The Girl Who Chased the Moon" by Sarah Addison Allen.) I won't want to put it down, and that's a problem because of "Sweeney Todd". This is Hell Week, which actually hasn't started out so bad. We had four hours of rehearsal last night, but I had time to relax a bit at home and take Pepper for a short romp around the neighborhood (she even got off-leash time!) before I had to go. Tonight will be much crazier, though, because I'm not done with work until 5:00 and then I have to go get my music from my stand partner (he'll be late because he's teaching lessons late) and rehearsal starts at 6:30. I get the feeling I'll be choking down dinner as fast as I can. Ugh. Oh well. This is why I'm taking the day off on Friday, though. I'll probably be dead on my feet by then. But that's when the shows start, and I'm really excited. Last night was the first night we got to see the full cast and all of the props and such. So well done! (If you want to look at pictures, look at And I volunteered for an opera that will be done later on (another paying gig) so that will be cool.
Life is pretty good. If it sounds like I'm complaining about being busy, I'm sorry. It does get crazy, but I love it, too. The only thing is I'm not happy about my classes. They're not as interesting as I was hoping, so I don't want to do the work. I keep thinking, I don't need them for anything. I could just ask the professors to withdraw me, but I'm balking at having a W on my transcript, even for classes I'm taking recreationally. So I'll have to do the work. Ick.
For now, though, I'm trying to put it out of my mind. I have too many other, pleasanter things to think on.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

"Nothing's tougher than asking you to hand me my wolverine glass full of strawberry milk."

It's spring break, for just about everyone but me it seems. I've been doing so much homework this week (in preparation for next week, Hell week) and been working all day every day, but that's ok. Tomorrow's a holiday! So at least it's a short week.
My boss had to fly home to Australia suddenly on Tuesday. Pray for her, and her family. Apparently she found out before Christmas that her brother has melanoma, and at the time he was planning to have some treatments. But his cancer has advanced too far, and so she's flown home to be with him for the end.
I feel really bad, because in some ways this has been a boon to me. All that homework I mentioned earlier? I've been doing it at work. There's not much to be done, and since it's spring break it's been quieter than normal. I think, tops, there have been about five people in each day this week. (I'm going to propose next year that we shorten our hours even more, because this is ridiculous.) I've also been getting to watch a lot of Hulu. That, and I've been reading my book a bit.
I'm reading a really great new book, by the way. It's called "Bonk" by Mary Roach, and it's about the science of sex. And in a lot of ways, the history of scientific sex research. Very entertaining, because of her style. She says in the forward that she's sure she's a running joke at the San Francisco library for interlibrary loaning articles about such topics as the use of vacuum cleaners in autoerotic asphyxiation. (When I was working in ILL, the oddest request I remember getting was for an article about belly button lint. Apparently it mostly travels up from one's underwear.) I find it really funny that we attribute a symbolic women's empowerment move--Kegel exercises--to someone who vigilantly denied the need for clitoral stimulation as a means of achieving orgasm. The guy was a product of the fifties, and basically hated Kinsey and all of his research about women's orgasm. He didn't have a problem with it, he just agreed with Freud that any woman who needed clitoral stimulation was "stuck in childhood", and needed to be vaginally re-oriented. (Notice, these theories were put forward by men. It's really sad how many women bought into them, however.)
I also didn't realize that the 20's and 30's were relatively open, sexually. At least as far as research and acceptance of the topic. Then the fifties took a few giant leaps backward, no surprise there.
Lastly, I didn't realize there were so many people on sites like the Yahoo Clown Fetish Group (by her count, 642). I don't think anything, in my entire life, that I've thought about, on any topic, could be quite as bizarre as some of the things that have internet sites and even their own special type of porn. But rather than making it all sound weird, Roach approaches the topic as something silly and funny, which is why it's such a great book.