Zonk!

Aug. 4th, 2009 10:10 pm
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I am definitely too tired for transitional sentences, so here's what's been going on lately:

  1. I'm tired. Oh my god, am I tired. And it's not the fatigue of the first trimester, which felt a bit like the fatigue you have with the flu. I feel physically exhausted, like after an intense workout. I guess that walking to work with a bowling ball strapped to my chest could be considered an intense workout, so okay.

  2. That aside, the pregnancy is still going smoothly. People tend to only talk about their pregnancy woes and horror stories -- especially online -- and I guess I'm included in that. Anyway. I'm tired but doing very well.

  3. Of course, I think I'm all tough, but then I was reading this diary from the Oregon Trail, la la la, it sounds pretty arduous, la la la. And I get to the end, and she gave birth five days after they arrived in Oregon. OH MY GOD. I am so not tough.

  4. We've been so busy with traveling and cleaning out the garage and working that I haven't taken any pictures in a MONTH. It is driving me crazy, since I really want to do an alphabet project. Preferably before [untitled] arrives. But at this point I'm so tired that part of me is like, screw it, it can wait until he's old enough to read.

  5. Okay, on a non-pregnancy note, we saw Public Enemies last week. I'd really been looking forward to it, so maybe that's why I was so disappointed in it. I'm glad that it introduced me to the music of Otis Taylor, but other than that, eh.


Right. That's about it here. Oh god, I totally am a boring pregnant woman. Um. I finally upgraded to Leopard? I'm enjoying Howard's End? I'm . . . going to bed soon.
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I was reading this article about the general low ratings for Oscar telecasts, and it certainly didn't manage to rev me up for the Oscars (even though I've seen quite a few nominated films this year). In fact, this absolutely turned me off:
[T]he nomination of two songs from “Slumdog Millionaire” could give the evening a Bollywood flavor if the songs were performed onstage, as has often been done. The other nominated song, by Peter Gabriel and Thomas Newman, is from “Wall-E.”

As of last week the plan was to build part of each song into a single production number.


NOOO!!!! I want two big Bollywood production numbers! What the hell, Oscar people? Are they putting all three nominated songs into one big medley? (A pox on the unclear writing there, while I'm at it!)

I think Hugh Jackman is actually a really good choice as host, but for the rest of it -- bah.
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From [personal profile] linaerys I'm stealing the genius Pete Wentz* meme, where you go through a playlist randomly and pull out the first line of each song.

How's hope feeling today,
Are you sure you got the right number?
Lay lady, lay,
Oh, Susan, you were clued in.

We met in the springtime,
Maybe sparrow, you should wait.
Hey, Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me,
When I was young and full of grace.

Everything's so easy for Pauline.
Mimian tho buch jerey bukh rakh ley
We can fix what's broken
Driving home I see those flooded fields.

Hey, baby, you're a rock man,
I said I wanted to be alone.
We expected something, something better than before.
Everybody here comes from somewhere.

Hot cold season gonna sink in my sweat,
I said hey, hey boy.
Fast train,
Baby thinks he's dying.


That's pretty awesome. I really like how the second and fourth stanzas turned out!

And speaking of music, can anyone recommend some good Advent music? I have a fair amount of Christmas music, but I'd like some that's specifically for Advent. There are only so many times I can listen to "O Come O Come Emmanuel", and it is a very small number indeed.



* I don't actually know who that is.
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I'm not entirely clear why there are occasionally musical guests on The Colbert Report, but Paul Simon was amazing last night, singing "American Tune".



I love that song so much -- I got it from the eeee!, who got it from his friend H. And I was so delighted that Paul Simon played a relatively obscure song, so I had to share it now with all of you.
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I've been really busy lately, and there is nothing more satisfying than going to my politics folder in Google Reader and hitting "Mark all as read." Whee! I have time to read three different blogs analyzing the latest episode of Project Runway, but doing anything more than skimming the NY Times homepage is too much for me lately.

Also in the mix when I take breaks from work:

  1. I started reading White Teeth, by Zadie Smith, because I love love love Zadie Smith's writing. She just has this really sharp writing style and unexpected turns of phrase.

  2. But I wanted something lighter, and breezed through Jeeves and the Tie That Binds, by P.G. Wodehouse. I was glad that I found a Wodehouse book at home that I hadn't read yet, although I'm sure at some point I could re-read them without noticing.

  3. The length of a "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me" podcast is exactly equal to the time it takes me in one day, round trip, to get to and from work. So it's usually how I entertain myself on Mondays going to and from work. I'm sure people on the bus wondering why I'm giggling so much.

  4. The Defiance, Ohio channel on Pandora is giving me lots of Flogging Molly! Whee!

  5. I have recorded a ton of movies on the DVR lately (The Philadelphia Story, Hairspray, The Graduate), but like every time I'm stressed out and the eeee!'s out of town, I've been having a mini Gilmore Girls marathon. I know everyone raves about the first two seasons -- deservedly so -- but the second half of season four is awesome. Besides all the Luke and Lorelai stuff, you have Lorelai opening the inn, Lorelai dealing with her parents, Richard and Emily's marital problems, Luke and his family, and Lane and her mother. Rory's plotline kind of sucks, but everything else is woven together really well.

  6. I'm not going to see The Dark Knight until Wednesday night. Oh my god, I'm not sure I can wait that long. Since I teach (85-minute lectures) on MTW, my Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday nights are really busy. Maybe this will be good motivation to finish off the lectures early . . .

  7. Robomaro is really cute, once you figure out how to aim the shovel. I got to level 18 or so, at which point it rapidly becomes impossible.


And so there you have my coping mechanisms. I haven't had a nervous breakdown in weeks.
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Last quarter, when I was teaching intro astronomy, I would occasionally play music before class that had an astronomy theme. My playlist was quite long, as lots of songs have random astronomy and/or sky references.

However, now I'm teaching intro mechanics, and my playlist is much shorter. It consists of:

  • "Accelerate", R.E.M.
  • "The Weight", Aretha Franklin
  • "Steam Heat"
  • "Gravity", Modwheelmood
  • "Fall on Me", R.E.M.
  • "Free Fallin'", Tom Petty


And at least one of those is a stretch. (The eeee! just recommended "Material Girl", which is even more of a stretch than the others listed. "Material Girl" would be awesome for a quantum class, thought.)

Any suggestions? What other songs are there out there that somehow allude to things like rotation, force, power, or energy?
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Things here are insanely busy, but pretty good!


  1. The eeee! and I are going to see R.E.M. tomorrow! Yay! This will only be the second concert we've gone to together -- the first was Tom Petty, years ago -- and it will likely be the last, unless there's a Throwing Muses reunion or something. There is very little overlap in our musical tastes. Anyway, he's never been to an R.E.M. concert, and they put on a good live show, so I'm very excited about this. (Their new album is pretty good, by the way.)

  2. I've been happy with the Couch to 5K plan so far. The intervals are really working for me! But ask me again when I hit the two-mile runs.

  3. I am in love with this house. Stained glass windows! Built-in bookshelves! A walk score of 91! Not that we're looking for jobs now, or that we would find anything in Pittsburgh, or that I'm sure I'd want to live that close to my family . . .

  4. I am really getting the hang of Santa Barbara! Our place has a walkscore of 82, which seems about right. I really like that we can and do walk most places. And the ocean smelled really good this morning. (Okay, the ocean is by campus -- our place is at least 2.5 miles from water. But it still smelled awesome.)

  5. I am not in love with the Santa Barbara library, which sucks. Their email reminders don't work consistently, and there is little to no relation between what is listed as available and what is actually on the shelf. And, and, if you request something (either from another branch or because it's already checked out) they charge you fifty cents! FIFTY CENTS! I am going to have to start buying books again. Man, I was spoiled by Ann Arbor's library.

  6. Oh, but I'm reading some of The Sandman volumes (by Neil Gaiman) that I've borrowed from a friend, and so far I'm really enjoying them. I really liked "Midsummer Night's Dream" and "Facade", especially. The former almost makes me want to read Marvel 1602, except for the part where I wouldn't actually get any of the Marvel references.



There's a lot of other job and thesis crap I have to worry about right now, but overall, things here are good.
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What's your favorite R.E.M. album?

I'm sticking mine behind the cut, because I suspect it's not commonly mentioned. But maybe I'm wrong! And I don't know why I'm sticking it behind a cut, because it's obvious from the rest of the entry. )

On our way home tonight, we were singing along to "These Days" at the top of our lungs, and it really is one of my favorites. It has the most nondescript title ever, though, so no one ever knows what song I'm talking about. ("OHHHHH-oh, sonny, these days, happy throngs, take this joy, wherever, wherever, you go." Yeah, that probably didn't help, did it.)
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We finally watched the Futurama movie tonight (Bender Gets Bent), and it was on massive, massive amounts of crack. There were some cute references to previous episodes, and Al Gore was awesome, as always, but other than that, eh.

(And when I say "massive, massive amounts of crack", I mean, "Suddenly, last night's 30 Rock makes perfect sense." And speaking of last night's 30 Rock, at the end of the episode, the eeee! turned to me and asked if "Midnight Train to Georgia" was a real song. I was speechless. This is an issue that couples should address before getting married, I think -- where do you want to live, do you want kids, have you heard of Gladys Knight.)

Other than Eli's complete and utter disinterest in all things Motown, things here are going quite well. I have found Indian food in Isla Vista that is . . . well, it's barely passable, but it's cheap. I bought some clothes, so that I don't have to start repeating shirts on the fourth day of class. We went out for drinks with a bunch of ecology people we know in town (and there was a roughly even gender ratio, oh my god), and we have all sorts of other fun things planned for the weekend. Best of all, tomorrow's Michigan hockey game will be on actual, live TV. Hooray! Go Blue!
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This weekend, I discovered that the eeee! has never seen West Side Story. I don't even think he's heard any of the music from it, really, since I made a reference to "Maria" and he had no idea what I was talking about.

Of course, I have still not made it past about Act I, scene ii of Hamlet, and we're not sure which is the most egregious omission. At least I get most Hamlet references*!

Meanwhile, if you're not reading Slacktivist, he has absolutely been on fire for the past few months. And in his heroic blogging of the Left Behind series, a few weeks ago the comments broke out into full-on musical parodies of the books. It was awesome. And had the nice side benefit of introducing me to Right Behind, started by some of the commenters, which is a sort of serious parody of the series. As in, how do normal people, who haven't read the back cover of the book they're in, react to The Event? "Children of the Goats" is good, and "3000 Miles from Graceland" is particularly wrenching, but it's all good.

. . . I realize I have just effectively recommended Left Behind fanfic to you all. Um. To balance that all out, I will admit that I am the world's worst Scrabble player, and if you're looking for an easy game you should challenge me on Scrabulous on Facebook**.


* Well, sometimes only well after the fact. D'oh!

** The eeee! is ridiculously good at Scrabble. I need to practice.
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1. It is really hot here, so hot that I have no appetite. (I ate a small dinner at 11 p.m. last night, for crissake.) But today for lunch I had a veggie wrap with hummus -- filling and healthy, but I don't feel gross from the heat. Yay! (I will not eat frozen yogurt for dinner. I will not eat frozen yogurt for dinner. I will not eat frozen yogurt for dinner.)

2. We've settled into the apartment, and now that's it's clean and organized I think we'll manage to not kill each other. It helps that the bedroom is big enough for a desk, so that one of us can be working or watching TV in the living room, and the other can be working in the bedroom.

3. The wedding I went to this weekend was beautiful! And since the groom was from India, there was lots of Indian pop music at the reception. Yay! Now I'm trying to find some good Indian pop and/or bhangra CDs (seriously, I'm listening to a bhangra podcast right now). Any suggestions?

4. We also went golfing this weekend, and I did pretty well! I was inconsistent with my irons (which is weird for me), but I was otherwise happy with how I did, considering that I'd only been to the driving range once this summer. And I out-drove* my dad on a hole! That was really exciting, because since the course was a converted par-3 (all the holes were par 3 or 4, so longer than a par-3 but shorter than a normal course) there weren't separate tee boxes for men and women. And my dad is a very good golfer. Anyway, if I make to the driving range and/or out this weekend on a round, I should be in good shape for the family outing.

5. Since we're not spending every free second doing house-related things, I actually have free time again! Oh my god. I finished my reread of Half-Blood Prince, and now I'm reading The Great Gatsby. I hated Gatsby in high school, but I recently realized that was probably because I really hated my classmates' reactions to it. So a few friends and I are rereading Gatsby together, although more as an excuse to get together and drink wine than anything else. Anyway, I'm enjoying it so far this go-round.

6. I can't get over how my life is only moderately insane until we leave for Santa Barbara in late August. We only have two weekend trips! We can do things like go to movies and baseball games and hang out with people and all sorts of stuff! Too bad we can't have people over to grill.

* I proceeded to waste my drive by sending two consecutive shots into the woods. I spent most of the day unable to hit my irons straight and in the air, and on that hole they were going into the air. Sigh.

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