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Last night, I suddenly got butterflies in my stomach about the whole impending labor/delivery/parenthood thing. And very excited about the prospect of meeting [untitled] soon.

A sign that labor is on the way? Or, more likely, a sign that there's no more football to distract me?

(The Steelers gave me several heart attacks last night, but did not send me into labor, alas.)
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Things here continue to be hectic. It doesn't help that I'm at 37 weeks, and have no energy anymore, so I have a very lax definition of "hectic". The eeee! only wishes I was nesting, but so far, nothing.

  1. MICHIGAN FOOTBALL! Oh my god. I was cautiously optimistic after they blew out Western Michigan last weekend, and I also thought that Notre Dame was totally overrated this season. But that was such an exciting game, and Michigan actually has a freaking quarterback this season! Hooray! Now we just need a functional pass defense.

  2. Between the Steelers and Michigan, it's been a good football weekend for me. And a really mean part of me is smirking at how bad a football weekend it's been for the state of Ohio. (The end of that Denver-Cinci game was really the nail in the coffin, damn.)

  3. We watched the latest Futurama movie, Into the Wild Green Yonder last night, and eh. We were underwhelmed. The Futurama movies remind me of the last season of Arrested Development -- there are some good bits here and there, but overall they're both rambling messes without a good, coherent storyline. I think the problem is that both shows were wrapped up very well (particularly Futurama, but also the end of season 2 of AD), and the writers underestimated how hard it would be to start up again. (Also see: Mostly Harmless, by Douglas Adams.)

  4. We made our first real trip to Costco for things, and it was only mildly terrifying. I must say, though, we would have joined years ago if we knew they had beer! Good beer! Beer we drink on a regular basis (Newcastle and Firestone), for much cheaper than even the sale prices at the grocery store!

    pregnancy rambling )

    Hope you're all having a lovely weekend! Even if you're a fan of Ohio football teams (sorry about that).


Jan. 30th, 2009 03:00 pm
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I can't believe it's the end of January, but I am looking forward to this weekend!

Tonight: FREE CHIMICHANGAS at happy hour! That's why the beer is so expensive. Mmmm, chimichangas.

Tomorrow: The farmer's market, THE BEACH, and Michigan-Notre Dame hockey on TV! (EDIT: And a Chinese New Year celebration! Whee! Yeah, I know it's late for that.)

Sunday: Working, and watching the Steelers in the Super Bowl! Woo-hoo!


And that's about it here. Work is okay, we're all okay . . . that's about it.
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What non-election things do I have to say?

  1. This article on port-a-potties for the NY Marathon reminds me of how we used to rent a port-a-potty for football parking. It would be in the yard for the whole season -- classy! -- and the company emptied it after every game. Okay, great. But on more than one occasion, we noticed people wandering through our yard late at night, leaving other parties and using our port-a-potty. Hee! Better than peeing on our house, I guess.

  2. I have a great deal of affection for Cryptonomicon, but now is not the time to start reading Anathem -- I'm waiting for it to come out in paperback. So I picked up The Diamond Age for my Neal Stephenson fix, and I'm really not getting into it. I'm not sure why, but I think I'm not sold by the world-building. Have any of you read Anathem yet? Where is it on the Stephenson spectrum?

  3. I have no costume ideas this year! Except maybe Katie Couric. I have seven hours to come up with something from the stuff in my closet. I might go as Carmen Sandiego again, if I can't think of anything else.

  4. This is sort of election-related: I am really concerned about how long the lines will be on Tuesday. Namely, the eeee! and I are going to vote together around 1 p.m. (long story), and I'm worried that we won't be back home by 4 p.m., when people will start coming over to watch results with us.

    I kind of love that I only worry about how long lines will affect my party plans.

And that's all I got that's not about the election. And even so, I only get a C on my attempt to not talk about the election! Aaaaah four more days! :D
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I am quite delighted that my two beloved football teams -- Michigan and the Steelers -- both had come-from-behind victories this weekend!

We caught the end of the Steeler game at a bar, and near the end of regulation I was moaning about overtime, because I hate the NFL overtime system. A guy we'd been chatting with asked me what I thought about the college system, and I said that I liked it, but thought they should start at the 35-yard-line, instead of the 25. I could tell he was testing me, to see if I knew anything, and he seemed pretty surprised to find himself agreeing with me. (A few minutes later, him and a few others were really surprised to find out that I knew how many timeouts each time got at the beginning of OT. I was like, "Yeah, I've watched JUST A LITTLE BIT of football in my time.")

We missed the first half because we went to Rosh Hashanah services tonight. I'd never been, and I thought it was nice. Any sort of starting anew sounds good, right about now.

And finally, we watched Airplane! and Zero Hour! the other night, and I marveled at how the clothes in Airplane! look less ridiculous than the clothes in an old episode of 90210. I'm not sure if that says something about the cyclical nature of fashion, the difference between trendy clothes and basic clothes, or about my personal preferences. But there you have it.

And and, I'm over my cold! Lemon-ginger tea will cure anything, I think.
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This has been a good weekend so far, except for football-related things:

  1. A high school friend of mine came to town yesterday (she was visiting her mother in L.A.). Hooray! We had a lot of fun just wandering around and hanging out -- not enough time to go to a winery or the Mission, unfortunately. Of my group of high school friends, I would not have necessarily guessed that she and I would have remained in close touch. We weren't particularly close in high school, and she got married and had kids right after college, while I . . . didn't. But we had a good time yesterday. Although, at one point, she asked me if I had made some crazy jello thing with gummy bears, or another silly snack, and I had to remind her that I don't have kids, and thus any crazy jello concoction I make is likely to have vodka in it.

  2. The eeee! and I have made a lot of progress in organizing our place, in anticipation of my parents coming in two weeks.

  3. My parents are coming in two weeks! Hooray! That should be lots of fun. Oh, I hope the weather is good.

  4. We watched American Dreamz on Friday night, which was very amusing. The timing of it was perfect, what with it being primary season and American Idol season. It was a ballsier satire than I expected -- especially playing the terrorist training camp for laughs -- so I really enjoyed it.

    We then watched L.A. Story last night, which I was less impressed with. Maybe because people have talked it up, or maybe I just don't like Steve Martin's writing, I don't know. And maybe I was expecting something more satirical.

  5. OMG Michigan hockey!!!!!

  6. Our washer is still not fixed, so we are still doing laundry at the laundromat. Argh. Luckily it's only three blocks away.

  7. A bunch of my cousins have suddenly joined Facebook, and have thus found my pictures (although I guess I would have emailed them eventually). And one of them wants to get prints of a few of them to frame and hang up in his house! I am especially flattered by this because I think him and his wife have the coolest house, and in general are among the most stylish of my cousins.

  8. I think I actually have to root for the Patriots in the Super Bowl. At least I am no longer surrounded by New England sports fans.

  9. Thank god this is a three-day weekend, because I have gotten nothing done this weekend. I am finally working on one of my thesis papers again, though, so progress is being made!
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Things here are looking up. I spent way, way too many hours this weekend watching terrible football, but my weekend was otherwise relaxing and low-key. And work is going well -- I'm giving a short talk a week from today (eeek!), and it'll be a good dry run of the talk I'm giving at a bigger conference in two weeks.

I finally have data again, and I'm working on a series of papers that are really getting fleshed out. I need to bust my tail and get at least one of them submitted before I leave Ann Arbor (on December 17, HOLY FUCK LESS THAN FOUR WEEKS AWAY INSERT PANICKING HERE). But that's the paper related to the talk I'm giving, and it has a short author list, so there shouldn't be any big delays in pulling it all together.

I do panic a bit every time I think about how much prep work I still need to do for teaching in January. But one thing at a time. I can do this.

At least Thanksgiving is coming up, and I'm looking forward to hanging out with my family. It will be the first Thanksgiving the eeee! and I have spent apart, though, so that's a little strange.

This has been a strange semester, in general. This weekend I'm bringing dirty laundry home to my parents. (The laundry machine in my building is malfunctioning, and I'm too lazy and cheap to go to the laundromat.) And until this semester, I hadn't appreciated how great it was to have a dog, because it forced me to go outside everyday and see people and be part of a neighborhood. Sure, I've been out and about, but not with the adorable conversation-starter that is our dog. It's like I've regressed to being a first-year -- only interacting with astronomers, living alone, taking laundry to the parents, etc.

I am eating better and vacuuming more often than I was back then, so I suppose I've made some personal progress in the last six years. But what a weird way to find out.
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Things are quiet but good here, I suppose.

  1. I'm not thinking about how much work I have to do. Aieeee!

  2. Current lecturers at UCSB have been very helpful and friendly in getting me set up for teaching in '08. That is such a huge relief.

  3. The eeee! and I are very worried about facing primary season without The Daily Show, in the case of a writers' strike.

  4. On a related note, we've both been watching way more TV in the time we've been living apart. Only two more months, though! And he'll be here in a week and a half for a bit. But I wonder about the re-adjustment we'll have when we're living together again full time, instead of a long weekend here and there.

  5. I read somewhere that the first 10,000 pictures you take suck, and only after that do see a really big improvement (in other words: practice practice practice practice practice!). I've taken about 6,500 pictures in my life, I think, so I have a ways to go. But that 10K number sounds about right.

  6. The Steelers are actually on TV tonight! Yay!

  7. The weather here is lovely, and the trees are all so beautiful -- I won't miss winter in Santa Barbara, but I sure as hell will miss the month of October.

  8. Edited to note: There is no mention on the Steelers website of the mascot, "Steely McBeam". I hope this means someone informed that front office that they had chosen a joke name for the mascot, and that the mascot will die a quiet death.

Have a wonderful week!
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Things here are going well. I'm not even going to bother listing the bad. (Well. I hope not. Provided nothing sets me off.)

1. The semester has started! I know I usually whine about this, and indeed I now have to fight for elevators, and I won't even bother going to Dominick's again until summertime. But it also means that lots of people are around -- including new postdocs and new grad students, which is exciting -- and there are lots of things going on.

2. Steelers! Yay!

3. I find myself identifying with and talking with the post-docs more than the young grad students. Maybe that's not all good, but I think it's a good sign that I'm comfortable talking about science with postdocs. After all, they will be my peers next year (aieee!).

4. Miss Manners was really awesome this week. I love it when rude people write in, convinced that they are right. Are they really that delusional? Or are those letters made up?

5. The eyebrow waxing didn't hurt nearly as much as I thought it would. It doesn't look all that different, although I suppose it is neater.

6. Work is going okay. And I think I broke the intrinsic float command in Fortran, which I'm oddly proud of.

7. Dude! I'm getting married a week from tomorrow! Aieee!
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The gripes are under the cut... )

And now for the good things:

  1. College football starts this weekend. Yay! And with college football comes parking money, so that's a really nice side benefit. Plus, I love that I can just step outside and be in the middle of game day festivities.

  2. The weather has turned into early fall weather -- cool, clear, and dry.

  3. I can hear the Michigan Marching band practicing from my house, which makes me happy. (Except oh god, now it seems that there's just a saxophone sectional going on nearby, and if I had to pick my least favorite instrument ever, it would be the alto sax. Love the tenor sax, hate hate hate the alto sax.)

  4. I just finished Sweetness in the Belly, by Camilla Gibb, and it was phenomenal. So beautiful and sad and hopeful.

  5. I'm getting married two weeks from tomorrow. Aieeee! Yay!

  6. There is some really good coffee waiting for me in the kitchen.
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[personal profile] starfishchick gave me the letter D, and I'm finally posting about 10 things that begin with the letter D. If you want a letter, just leave a comment!

D is for . . .  )
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I really love Andrea Barrett's writing, and The Voyage of the Narwhal did not disappoint. It captured the scientists' and explorers' thirst for glory and recognition, but it also got their loneliness. I think there's a lot of fiction about scientists that doesn't quite get the loneliness and awkwardness, but Barrett hits it every time. I wish she had spent a bit more time on the crewmen, though, or on the women left behind, all of whom lacked any power or control in the situation.

I admit that part of the reason I love this book so much is that Barrett paints the settings so well. This is a wonderful book to curl up with on a winter's day, when the days are short and the weather is crummy but you're inside with a cup of tea or some scotch.

I'm not really reading much of anything right now. I have The Sari Shop, by Rupa Bajwa, for the bus, but I haven't had much other time lately. I was thinking that I'd have time to read in Berkeley, but the Winter Olympics will be going on! I have no self-control in the face of hockey and curling and luge and short-track speed skating and ski-jumping.

In other news, that football team I like won their 8th game in a row on Sunday night. Go Steelers!
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Skip Bayless has spent the last week whining about how boring the Super Bowl will be. Before that, he was whining about how boring the playoffs were after New England and Indianapolis both lost. But of all the annoying things he said in his most recent column, I was actually most indignant on behalf of the Seahawks. So I snapped, and sent him an email:
Of all your ridiculous statements in your 1/30/06 column about the Super Bowl, I'm most baffled by your statements about the unlikeliness of the Seahawks making it to the Super Bowl. Sure, the NFC West is a weak conference. But "if Vick hadn't regressed?" Michael Vick is one of the most overrated athletes in the NFL! "If the Giants, Redskins and Cowboys hadn't been forced to do battle twice in the East?" Last I checked, the Giants and the Redskins both made the playoffs, and lost. How are their playoff losses related to their tough regular-season schedules? Shouldn't that have made them tougher in the postseason? As it turned out, the playoffs showed that Eli Manning is overrated, the Redskins have no offense, and the Panthers are one-dimensional. The playoffs also showed that the Seahawks are by far the best team in the NFC.

As for your gripes about not seeing Brady or Peyton Manning in the playoffs -- hey, dynasties end eventually. Star quarterbacks choke on the pressure. Instead of bemoaning the lack of T.O. or Belichick in the Super Bowl, why not enjoy the possible beginning of a Seahawks dynasty, or the ascendancy of Ben Roethlisberger?

Whew! That felt good. And don't get me started on his treatment of the Steelers.1


1Okay, since you ASKED, here goes. Sure, the Steelers had some "lucky bounces" against Denver. Roethlisberger threw two near-interceptions on the first drive, yes. But the reason they weren't interceptions wasn't just luck -- it was because the Steelers receivers kept their heads in the game and defended the defenders. (This is particularly clear on the second near-interception, in the end zone.) And yes, the infamous Tackle after the infamous Fumble against Indianapolis had some luck to it. But had Harper kept his head in the game, he would have run to the sideline and scored a touchdown. He didn't stay focused, but Roethlisberger did, and somehow managed to tackle him.

My point is that the Steelers have kept their heads in the game at all times, and have been able to make up for mistakes and bad officiating, unlike some other teams I could mention (Colts) (Patriots).
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I have only now been able to start breathing again after the Steelers game today. OH MY GOD. Go Steelers!

And, I've always hated Peyton Manning, and today he again showed his total lack of sportsmanship. "We had some protection problems." Oh, Peyton, be a teammate, and admit that some of the blame for your 3-6 playoff record rests on you. Don't hang your linemen out to dry.

Thank god I don't have to see his sulking face for another eight months. GO STEELERS!
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I got an email reminder about the bridal show I'm going to this weekend, and among other things it said:
Bring your fiance - he'll love the GROOM'S ROOM ! Sponsored by The Club at Key Center. He can enjoy $1 soft drinks and drafts and 25 cent wings while he watches his favorite football game and get a Free Engagement Photo as well.

I want to go to the Groom's Room! Dollar drafts (which I'm sure will just be Bud Light, but still)? Football? Hello!

The eeee! isn't actually coming, and my mom and I hope to be done with the bridal show before the football starts, but we figured we could slip in and pretend we're looking for him. They don't have to know he's not there!

This whole bridal show thing is starting to give me a headache. On the plus side, there will be cake samples.
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Not that Michigan didn't deserve to lose the game. And not that we don't need to fire the Michigan defensive coordinator.

But OH MY GOD that was the worst officiating I've ever seen.

(More about my holiday later, I promise.)
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I'm almost done with The Birth of Venus, by Sarah Dunant, but I might not even finish it. It's okay, but I only picked it up because The Plot Against America was too depressing to read during the holidays. I did finish The Christmas Mystery, by Jostein Gaarder, and I wasn't crazy about that, either. Like Sophie's World, it has a great, strong premise, interesting plot, but a total crap finish.

Such is my life right now. I'm stuck on finishing a paper, and there were some revisions I should have finished over break, but . . . I didn't. I didn't do a damn thing over break, except read astro-ph. I don't know if I'm feeling overwhelmed by what I have to do, but the worst of it is over -- I just have to expand my write-up of the project. It's not that hard, but I'm somehow paralyzed by it. I'm just sick of this project, and I want it to be OVER so I can work on my thesis project. Sigh. I can do this. This happens to me all the time, and I need to change that, and become a strong finisher.

And Michigan LOST in the Rose Bowl, by a last-minute field goal. Ugh.

March 2013



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