Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Relax, relax, we're not converting to Catholicism. But neither one of us had been before, and this time next year we'll have a kid which makes it unlikely we'll have the opportunity to go again. So yes, believe it or not, I managed to stay up til 2:30 (a record for me, probably since we got hitched but DEFINITELY since the baby started to grow in me belly, as I am usually down for the count by 10 PM), and readers: IT. WAS. BEAUTIFUL. Over a thousand people were there, and all kinds of people, too: suits and green mohawks, jeans and fur coats, a really heartwarming mix, and the cathedral is breathtaking, and there was a lot I didn't really get, but I'll tell you what I did get: when they turned the lights down and we all knelt on those kneeling pads and sang "Silent Night." Incredible. I will now include a couple of verses of "O Come, All Ye Faithful" that we sang for the processional hymn. I had never heard these before, but I loved them, and I hope you love them too, and singing them with 1000 other people at midnight in a strange and beautiful cathedral is something I can't recommend highly enough. Merry Christmas.
See, how the shepherds summoned to his cradle
Leaving their flocks, draw nigh to gaze.
We there will also turn our joyful footsteps.
Child, for us sinners, poor and in the manger
We would embrace thee with love and awe
Who would not love thee, loving us so dearly?
Thursday, December 20, 2007
I AM HALFWAY DONE WITH LAW SCHOOL.
As discussed in an earlier post, halfway means that if you round up, I'm basically finished. Though rounding could be dangerous, bc if we rounded yesterday, I wouldn't have been accepted yet. Anyway, halfway also means I have earned the "J" portion of my "J.D." So if I stopped now, could I still just put the J after my name? Relax, relax, I'm not quitting (though I might be more popular in some circles if I quit, considering I've been told that finishing school with a baby is "putting my career ahead of my family"). After all, IT'S HALFTIME.
Inspired by Smith's post, let me just thank a few people/things that have gotten me this far:
1. Husband. Even though you weren't called "husband" when I started, you have been called "husband" for 2/3 of my 1/2 of law school. Now before this turns into a fifth grade story problem, let's just cut to the chase and say that when I finish, we will have spent 83 percent of my law school time married, which is a lot of law school to be married through, so GOOD JOB, HONEY. You put up with me talking about false imprisonment in The Office and federal rules of evidence during Law & Order (they never authenticate anything on that show), you patiently put up with my obnoxious jargon, and always remind me to eff the hype, and drive me 45 miles on a Saturday morning when my car poops out, and you don't hold a grudge when I neglect you during intense times, and you rub away tension in my back, and proofread boring, repetitive papers and sit through snooty dinners and give me pep talks. All while you have your own graduate program to worry about! Oh, bless you.
2. Rest of family. You let me give you coupons for free legal advice one day instead of gifts, and show up to watch boring competitions that don't really make sense, and you communicate with me electronically when I'm trapped in the law library all day and unable to talk out loud. Good job.
3. Government. Thank you for letting me stay here legally and for lending me money and for watching over me in a big brother way. Okay, not the last one. But thanks for the funds and the legal status and everything.
4. Diet cola. You haven't helped me much this year, because I am trying to help da baby grow big and strong (but not too big, bc she still has to come out) without things like caffeine and fake sugar, but you helped me LAST year, and if I hadn't survived last year, I wouldn't be blogging this blog, so seriously, great work.
5. Itunes shared libraries...nothing helps a girl study like finding out her classmate has every Ace of Base song known to man available. And Disney's greatest hits. And Tupac everything.
6. Lunch dates. Without you, I'd be under my desk rocking back and forth in the fetal position.
7. YOU! My dear readers, who don't mind my boring law stories, and give me an audience for venting and laughing, and who understand when I occasionally start humming the "I have a bad case of diarrhea" song.
recent addition: 8. Da baby. You always sit so reverently in class, and you haven't made me barf even once, and have been such a good fetus all around. I reward you with continued nourishment.
So, hurray for halftime! Where's the band? How about a skanky dance routine? A wardrobe malfunction? How about at least a little half-time shimmy? And from my experience, the last half of everything always goes faster. Your gas tank, for example. Either way, hurray. It's winter break.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
He had worked in marketing at some hotshot real estate firm in the South for a couple of years after college. After one of his employees yelled at him on the phone, he slammed the phone down, frustrated. He picked it back up, decided to go to law school, and called a 1-800 number to register for an LSAT prep course. That's when it started.
Months later, he was at a law school fair in the east, where law schools from all over the country set up tables and answer questions. The BYU table was deserted (he claims it looks like there were "tumbleweeds") and he felt sorry for the lonely man sitting at it, plus he'd had a buddy go to BYU a decade earlier, so he stopped at the table for quick pity-hello. (The dean sitting at the table later told him that he'd had a feeling when walked by. He felt like this man would come to the law school and join the church, but figured he should act natural about it, because talk about a quick way to freak someone out and let them know exactly why your table's deserted).
Anyway, this guy was well-qualified and could've gone anywhere, but quickly realized the J. Reub was three times cheaper than anywhere else and figured hey, nowhere else is actually three times better. So, he did it! And his first week there, he got turned away from the financial aid office for wearing too short-shorts (ha!) and felt like an alien when he washed his truck outside on a Sunday with his shirt off as church-goers gawked. People had warned him that in Provo, he would eat freakish amounts of ice cream and a friend even told him to tie a ribbon above his knee underneath his jeans in case any girls looked for his undies, because then they'd be more likely to date him.
So, during his three years at the law school, he was given 5+ copies of the Book of Mormon, met with a dozen sets of missionaries despite his consistant "thanks but no thanks" response, even met an apostle or two, had multiple leaders and even mission presidents sit him down and invite him to learn more, yet miraculously survived three years in Provo without joining the church...only to go home to NY and have a change of heart years later.
He compared his joining the church to barfing. Like when you know you're going to throw up, and you don't want to get up, and you think you can suppress it, but then you realize "Uh oh. I better run for the bathroom, it's coming up no matter what I do." The missionaries told him, "Our job is to help you find the toilet." Everything about his baptism was great, he told us, except the outfit they made him wear. Straight out of the 70s, way too snug, slightly off-white with some Dumbo-ear-sized lapels. Besides the outfit, it was the best day of his life.
As we sat on the porch that sunny-but-freezing day, he found out I would be applying to law schools shortly; naturally, he began recruiting in earnest. I was as anti-BYU as they come (remember? I went to high school at EFY) and laughed in his face, though I admit I was shocked and secretly impressed that he had such a great experience there as a non-member. He was normal, smart, fun, and funny--the opposite of everything I imagined about BYU Law students who only wore khakis and didn't laugh when someone said "bastard." When I told him I had way bigger plans and threw out some of the schools I was thinking about, he responded laughingly, "Do the math and get back to me." And it's true. I'd owe six figures right now if I had gone any of those places. The rest of my mission, he kept telling me perk after perk about the law school, put me in touch with some of the deans, never let up. The more I talked with him, the more I felt nudged toward the J. Reub but just kept kicking bc seriously, it's BYU.
But of course, he was right, I gave in, and you know what? I am happy. Looking back, he and his miraculous story were definitely an answer to my prayers for where-the-freak-should-I-go-to-school-guidance and he became a great buddy. This baby wouldn't be on her way if I'd gone anywhere else, that's for sure. Some of the funniest things he told me about law school:
"You won't find a job you like. You're a lawyer, not a Disney guide."
"Sure, you can be a purist and write your own outlines and it will be a good learning experience. And writing Microsoft Word software would be a good experience too, but useless when all you need to do is print a document."
"Briefing every case is like mowing a lawn with your hands, grabbing fistfuls of grass."
The year after he was baptized, and a year after we met him, he married one of his law school classmates in the temple. Two months ago they had a baby girl. Last month, I asked him to give a presentation at the law school about his conversion story, along with the dean who first recruited him. In that presentation, he said "You can sum my story up like this: Man unhappy, man joins church, man now happy."
I just found out that he died yesterday in a skiing accident.
Thank you for making me go to BYU and thank you for your example and thank you for your helluva story and thank you for your life. I'm glad you gave into that barf-baptism feeling and I'm glad I met you. We'll miss you, Jason.
Monday, December 17, 2007
First, I've been having the weirdest dreams since this baby started growing in me body. For example, last night I dreamed we parked our car in a parking structure, not realizing that to save space, the structure magically shrunk the cars as soon as we left. So we had to look for our car with a magnifying glass, and the man working there helped us find our teensy car, and afterwards I tried to invite him over for dinner as a thank you, and he said I had tried to re-activate him last time we were there and he still wasn't interested in the gospel. What does it MEAN? Is our baby a prophetess and trying to send me messages? Maybe I just need more bedtime snacks. Then, my stomach will be hard at work as I slumber, distracting my brain.
Another example: last week, I woke up and told husband: "I just dreamed that instead of a baby, I laid twelve eggs." Not huge like ostrich eggs, but not teensy like the "large" ones at the grocery, either (do I sound hip and/or European if I just call it "the grocery"?). I kept them warm like a good mama bird. Does this mean I'll barf into our baby's mouth to feed her when she's born? Point to ponder.
Second, in studying for things like law school (which, believe it or not, I often enjoy), I realized I have an intense fear of becoming a CB. That's right. Corporate Bastard. I won't, though, right? CBs depress me. I know we all start out saying we want to help people, and others laugh at our idealistic ways, but for crying out loud, when PEOPLE need lawyers it's because they need help, and I want to help them. When people or companies hire CBs it's because they screwed over the little guy and need help muffling his cries, and my job would be to smother the little guy with a pillow, then get in my ritzy but-in-a-boring-way ritzy car and go to our house and kiss our kids on the cheek when the nanny goes home, then take them to the country club. PLEASE. NO. I need substance in my life. Or maybe I just need to watch more Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous and less Erin Brocovich, and I'll feel better. Next week, I'm halfway done with law school, which means if you round up, I'm basically finished, and if I still have (relatively) moral motives this far in, I'll totally be okay, right? Right? KULACB....new club...Knocked Up Lawyers Against Corporate Bastardization. Watch for an upcoming membership drive.
Third, in early college, I was at a store (not the grocery) and I saw some normal, kind-looking young moms chatting in line. I remember smiling to myself, imagining that perhaps I would one day be them, then throwing up in my mouth a little when I heard they were talking about wallpaper and stenciling. WALLPAPER. Can you believe this? Are you as shocked as my 18 year old self was?? It's not that they were talking about it, as much as it was that they were talking about it so enthusiastically. Since then, I have had a desperate fear of becoming them. So if I ever blog about wallpaper (not in an "I just remodeled the H out of my home" way, like The Summerill Surf, which is inspirational and outstanding, not lame), but if I ever start talking about ridiculous things like they are awesome, I want you to come find me. Intervene like they do for AA, reader. The first step toward recovery. HELP ME IF I BECOME THAT. This may be part of why I have such negative feelings toward learning to cook or craft, because I am afraid that it is all I will do, and all I will talk about. Some of those people freak me out. Note that if you cook and/or craft, I still respect you. You just freak me out a little.
Fourth, I am three years old when it comes to husband and Christmas presents. As soon as I get him something, I have to tell him or I'll explode. Is this normal? Also, we still don't have a tree. Is that bad? Maybe we'll get one tonight. We're totally tree-ready, though, so good for us. What else should I get him? Shoot. He reads this. Give any suggestions you have in code, with the first letter of each word spelling out the item. For example, you want me to get him socks, you say Snuggle Often Creepy Kite Sinker. Nevermind. NOW HE KNOWS THE CODE. See what I mean about not keeping secrets?
Fifth, I might be a hippie on the inside. I only want our kid to play with blocks. Will this pass?
Sixth, I need to write a brief about protective sweeps, which I don't like nearly as much as complaining about CBs. So, I'll carry on with the brief writing now. But if you want to join the club, let me know. We might need a more inclusive name, FLAL. Future Lawyers Against Lame. No, come on Gurrbonz, more inclusive. You don't need to be an FL. How about just PAL. People Against Lame. PAL, unite!
We can design our own wallpaper.
Thursday, December 06, 2007
"(D) makes absolutely no sense."
This is a bad sign.
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
Monday, December 03, 2007
I realize now that I have done a disservice to you and all who like fun by burying a glorious link in a long public transportation-related tirade below. So here is the Schmelzy video, in its whole own post, here for your viewing pleasure. I wish I could somehow hold it up like Rafiki holds up Simba on the Lion King, because deep down I think we all want a gem sweater.
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Yesterday, at 6 PM, I was still waiting at the busstop, shivering my butt off as the express bus was late. Nose loses feeling and hands turn purple as I continue standing there at 6:20. Someone calls the bus people only to find out that the express bus got in an accident; they're sending a replacement but have NO IDEA WHEN IT WILL GET THERE and recommend we take an alternate route. Well, poop all over my face. The "alternate route" is 15 minutes across campus (note that I make it a point to never leave the law school, so campus is unknown territory), and takes TWICE AS LONG as the express bus as it stops at every 2 feet along state street, and leaves at 6:30. So, it's 30 degrees and I have 7-8 minutes to make a 15 minute trek while carrying all my damn books, just to take 2 effing hours to get to my car, which is still an additional 20 minutes from home. And I'm hungry.
Can you feel my delight?
At this moment of despair, three Schmelzes (that means uber-frumps) begin--and I am not making this up-- singing songs. From Hairspray. At the top of their lungs. Where the hell am I??
So, I start booking it across campus only to realize that Team Schmelz is going there too. Singing the whole way. Don't worry. Lucky for me, they have RECORDED THEMSELVES SINGING ON ONE OF THEIR CELL PHONES, AND BEGIN PLAYING IT BACK. So, I get to listen to double Good Morning Baltimore, offkey and Schmeltified. Poop all over my face.
After a few minutes of speed walking and switching my shoulder bag a couple of times, I (and the handful of people walking with me) realize we are not going to make it unless we run.
Note: I don't run anyway, but when IT IS 30 DEGREES and I am pregnant and therefore get out of breath walking up stairs, let alone running across campus, and I HAVE A COLD, and am basically CARRYING 3 VOLUMES OF ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITTANICA, this could get ugly. So I run for a few minutes and quickly realize this is not going to work, so begin walking. Only to realize that I cannot breathe, and in addition to that fact, I have fallen behind the damn group walking to the other stop, and I am totally unfamiliar with campus and DON'T KNOW WHERE THE STOP IS. Poop all over my face.
I turn the corner and see the bus pull up, so run there as fast as I can, and climb aboard dripping sweat, red face from cold and despair, coughing nastily and COMPLETELY out of breath, not just gasping but hardcore seizure-esque wheezing. Everyone stares at me like "Why can't the lady with ten thousand law books run like a human being instead of a special-needs turtle?" and I want to explain that I am sick and 5 months pregnant and NOT in a mood to be messed with, but am so out of breath that all I can do is peel off my coat and think about how I'm not getting to my car for 2 more hours.
But at least I caught the bus. Our bus turns onto a major street and guess what's right in front of us?
That's right. The express bus.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Visit "The Cream of the Crop" list on that site, and you'll discover my favorite category:
Our baby is so lucky we have these to choose from.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Three years ago, I entered the MTC, and now I'm married, knocked up, and halfway through law school, so yes it's been a helluva few years. Since Thanksgiving's approaching, I'm going to take a few minutes to be a cheese, and it's my blog so I'll cheese if I want to, cheese if I want to, cheese if I want to (begin singing Leslie Gore's 1963 smash hit, It's My Party)...
I'm going to steal Marlin K. Jensen's statement from the PBS Mormons documentary because it captures my feelings exactly. Talking about his mission, he said:
"That was the moment, really, when my hope and my tender belief turned into something really solid, which has been the foundation for the rest of my life. It's what motivates me. It's what gets me up in the morning. It's what carries me in the duties that I do. It's what gives me joy and satisfaction from knowing that my way in life is the way I should be going. And it came about in that moment. So when people say, "How was your mission?," I say it was everything, because I've never been the same since that little moment."
I had 2 Thanksgivings on my mission, the first one in the MTC and the second one in a trailer park. The second one was the best ever; we had breakfast with a family of little kids where I watched the 5 year old pick up every single muffin in the bowl, smell it, lick it, and put it back. His sister's hands were red with koolaid or something, and she climbed up on the counter and patted the thawing turkey, then sucked her fingers, then started touching our faces. And you know what? We just laughed and hugged her and it wasn't gross, it was endearing. We served at the Joseph Smith Farm that afternoon, then for dinner, we went to a trailer park across town for some lumpy punch, meatballs and ham. Their dog pooped on some newspaper in the hallway and they just threw it away and laid some more newspaper down. One of the nicest, most down-home days of my life.
And I remember how overwhelmed I was three years ago, when I didn't know what I was getting into, and just sat in some stuffy classroom in the MTC, prayerful and hopeful but with no clue what was coming...and it ended up being 10,000 times better than I could have imagined, with crazy ups and downs and more joy than I knew was possible. And on top of all that, I later had the privilege of marrying a champion, which was even better than the happiest happy I'd felt before. So I remember those MTC-feelings of uncertainty about the future, and feeling inadequate and 12 years old on the inside, and I look down at my growing belly and feel the same uncertainty, the same inadequacy, the same "Wait, I'm actually 12, this is a mistake" but times a billion, because this is a little person we are responsible for. And sure, it's only the size of a large mango right now, but this kid is going to have a life that we're supposed to help with. And I don't know yet if it's a he-baby or a she-baby, but I look down and wonder who our baby will be, and what our baby will see, and if it'll ever know how much we love it, and I'm overwhelmed at how much I want our kid to feel what I felt on my mission, and I'm scared we'll mess him or her up very badly, and then I remember my mission, and Thankgiving, and what good care God has always taken of me, and I feel better.
Monday, November 19, 2007
Friday, November 16, 2007
Geek B: And yet, a PhD is an absolute must for me at this point.
Geek B: No, because of my life goals and desires.
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Monday, November 12, 2007
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
Height: 135 cm (4'5")
Monday, October 29, 2007
Pages read for class today: 87
Hours spent in class: 3
Bottles of water on my desk: 5
How hungry I am on a scale of 1-10: 3,000
Hours spent on public transportation: 2
Gentlemen I saw spit while waiting at the trax station: 3
Gentlemen I saw farmer blow at the trax station: 1
Friday, October 26, 2007
"I'm-about-to-dress-up-and-ask-a-panel-of-judges-to-take-me-seriously-while-I-field-questions-about-fake-people's-fake-rights-all-day-and-try-not-to-pee-my-skirt." Just calling it "moot court" is less descriptive, but more convenient.
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Speaking of which, last week in Relief Society our lesson was on women in the church and YOWZA! Talk about stirring the pot...our teacher didn't get to say anything because the comments took over, and hand after hand went up like I have never seen before in my quarter century upon our earth. Some examples:
- one young newlywed mentioned she feels a lot of pressure to have kids. Several women responded, telling her it was the best thing she could ever do so to get started, while a bunch of other women told her to feel free to put it off a while because it will never be just her and her husband again, and one woman even asked, "Have you asked God's opinion? See what He thinks."
- one youngish mom with 2 little kids commented that while she loves being a parent, staying home is driving her crazy and it's not sustainable for her because she doesn't feel like all her talents are being utilized and she wants to contribute in a different way. A few people responded to her, saying that she needs to make it sustainable because that's where she belongs, while others expressed sympathy, urging her to follow her heart because so-and-so never regrets working and allowing your kids to see you pursue your talents helps them know it's okay and good for each of them to be his or her own person, too.
- one old lady with grown kids mentioned she wished she'd never worked outside the home and has felt guilty about it for 30 years, and another lady said she was glad she did because it taught her kids independence and is sick of people judging her.
- everyone agreed that whether they stayed at home, worked part time, full-time, kids, no kids, whatever, that they had felt judged by someone else because of their decision but that we shouldn't get up in each other's business.
Our lesson went 5 minutes over, raised voices, tears, hugs, you name it, a lot of emotions were close to the surface. Spiciest RS lesson of my life. Interested to hear how the men's lesson went, I asked my husband if his was as juicy as ours.
Not even close.
No one had anything to say. The opening question was, "What do you think are some challenges women in the church face?" Dead silence for a while, then one guy said that maybe a small minority want the priesthood. It's hilarious/startling/revealing that all these men are CLUELESS about what's important/challenging/heartbreaking for their spouses, having completely different conversations about the same topic. Like the genders live on different planets!
Addition: I should also note that I did not participate in the RS discussion, primarily because I was wrapped up in all the feelings swirling from the women around me. But I was really surprised at how many women felt judged; not just working moms, who said they felt like second-class citizens or like their neighbors looked down on them, or expressed frustration that people assumed they "had" to work when sometimes they just found it fulfilling, but also from moms who stayed at home. Some of them expressed feelings about how they felt like the worker bees looked down on them because "all" they did was stay home, so they must have tons of free time. One employed-outside-the-home mom mentioned that she knew plenty of moms that spent more time away from home than she did, but usually for community involvement or politics or uber-volunteering or whatever, so unpaid and therefore didn't count as a "job" so they were still "good moms." Overall, it really struck me how many women had conflicting feelings, regardless of their choices, and how sometimes, with all the pressure, it's a lose-lose. And let's make it a win-win, dammit.
Friday, October 19, 2007
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
In the last month or two, people have been up in my business about having a kid and being in law school. A lot of people are awesome and normal about it, and a lot of other people either assume I am dropping out, or they say things like "Hrmph. I never wanted to be one of those mothers that put their career ahead of their children," or on the opposite end, act like the lawyer life is the only thing that matters with statements like "Well what kid of job can you get now?" Such questions and comments make me grumpy.
Today, a champion classmate overheard me in the hall, talking about having a baby, and stopped and screamed and gave me a huge hug. He was thrilled, and the other classmate I was talking to said, "Yeah, we're just talking about how this will affect her career and where she'll get offers," and this all-star chimed in with "Who cares? That's the best news ever." He then said the following, one of the nicest things in a long time and it almost made me cry right in the freaking hallway. Put it on a t-shirt, folks:
(pointing at the classrooms) "This is superficial. "
(pointing to my belly) "THAT right there is the real deal."
I will love that guy forever for saying that.
Saturday, October 13, 2007
....and all I can think about is poo because it's just one letter short of FECAL. Sometimes my maturity overwhelms me.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
1. I really enjoy plums. Fruit in general, but especially plums because I am often quite thirsty. And you know what? They're great, and oft-forgotten. So go get yourself a few, and enjoy. You're welcome for the suggestion.
2. My clothes are getting snug, and I am in the flattering stage of looks that vary from "Aww, she's plumping out a bit, must be drowning her law school sorrows in Skittles, bless her heart" to "so...is anything new?" to "Back away from the doughnuts, tubachub."
3. I could sleep. all. freaking. day.
4. I made it the whole first trimester without puking. From what I hear, that's an exciting accomplishment, but now how am I supposed to guilt and/or manipulate our child about how much I barfed for it?
5. People keep asking me what I'm going to do. What kind of response does that deserve? What do you mean, what am I going to do? How about, love it? Raise it? Try to train it up in the way it should go? My new response: "Well, we've decided to keep it." No one has asked husband what he's going to do, just me, and maybe they never got the birds and bees talk, but it takes two. And we are both thrilled. And no I am not dropping out.
6. I don't know anything about little kids, and it's an overwhelming feeling to imagine that a little person, part me and part husband, will join our little fam. Will it hate us? Will it love us? Will it resent us? Will we embarrass it? Will it one day laugh with us about homonym mix ups and misplaced quotation "marks"? Will it be a poet/mechanic/florist/(insert vocation here)? Will it get its father's digestive system? (Please, please no). Will it decide to join us during finals, or will it hold out a bit longer? Will a relationship with a higher power click for it right away, or later in life, or never? Will we mess it up or will it flourish amidst our quirks? Will my nipples blister and bleed (I know, I know, it's gross but we've all heard the horror stories...come on...)?
We're pretty thrilled.
Monday, October 08, 2007
Thursday, October 04, 2007
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
Monday, October 01, 2007
Sunday, September 30, 2007
That's a lot o pages. It sounds just absurd enough that I might dig it. Unfortunately, I'm booked for the next 2 Novembers thanks to J. Reuben. Maybe 2010.
Direct quotes: "The kamikaze approach forces you to lower your expectations and take risks." "Make no mistake: You will be writing a lot of crap. And that's a good thing."
The writer in me is freakishly tempted. I double dog dare one of you give it a whirl and let me know how it goes
Friday, September 28, 2007
Thursday, September 27, 2007
Friday, September 21, 2007
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
And she wants book suggestions. And that causes me to reflect back on a time in my life, a time where I could actually read for pleasure, before things like the Federal Rules of Evidence, criminal procedure, Moot Court, a 90 mile commute each day, immigration blah blah barfy blah took up all of my discretionary time.
I think I remember those days...
TOP FIVE BOOKS I READ THIS SUMMER:
1. The Glass Castle. I know many of you are aware that I haven't been able to shut up about it, but with good reason. It really rocked me and I have been thinking about it for months. So read it and then go to lunch with me so we can discuss it.
2. A Thousand Splendid Suns. A pretty decent follow up to the Kite Runner. I know, I know, some of you want to yell, "Eff the hype," but I bought the hype, and read it in one night, and those are my favorite reading-for-pleasure books, the ones you can't put down and read in a weekend whirlwind. The treatment of women is appalling, so you might have to de-rage a few times.
3. The Good Earth. An oldie but a goodie. Just finally read the 1930s Pulitzer Prize-winning tale and dug it. Haven't read the following two books in the trilogy but it stands just fine on its own. It's a bit of a downer, but I think most books are in their own way. If you like this, pick up Snowflower and the Secret Fan which has a similar style and theme.
4. A Girl Named Zippy. Hehehe. I told a friend it's "harmless" and it's really true. Nothing too deep or thought provoking, but just a clever happy childhood memoir, good light summer-to-early fall reading. If you have a porch swing, that would be a great place to read this. Wearing shorts. Having noodles and/or lemonade. And maybe a treat after.
5. A tie for Black Like Me and The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother. Both interesting racial commentary and very readable, and both true stories with first-person accounts of race relations in a different era. Also both easy reads that could happen in a few days. And sometimes easy reads hit the spot.
Any suggestions from the rest of you?
Thursday, September 13, 2007
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Student: "So where is this guy now?"
Professor, without pausing: "HotSaints.com."
Saturday, September 08, 2007
I, too, appreciate the wonder of the express bus and how quickly it brings us to school each morning, and home each afternoon. I, too, enjoy how great it is for the environment, not to mention our pocketbooks. Just like you are, I am amazed at how much it resembles an airplane, with individual reading lights, chairs that recline, overhead seating compartments, etc., but I, too, rejoice in knowing that we can use our electronic devices at all times, rather than turning them off during takeoff and landing.
So I can appreciate the ease with which you feel comfortable on the bus.
However, what I canNOT appreciate is the ease with which you pick your nose when you are RIGHT next to me, before wiping it on the seat between us.
JUST BECAUSE I AM READING DOESN'T MEAN I CAN'T SEE YOU.
Additionally, I do not appreciate that you, just moments later, began SNORING with your face inches from my shoulder.
That is gross.
Know why it is called "public transportation"? Because you are in public.
Gurrbonzo, concerned citizen
Tuesday, September 04, 2007
1. "An open field need be neither 'open' nor a field."
2. "Evidence can only be received into evidence if it meets the rules of evidence."
3. "I fail to see how the quality or quantity of public debate will be promoted by further emasculation of state libel laws for the benefit of the news media."
(Note: emasculation means the surgical removal of the testes...I have removed the word "weener" from this post so as not to offend any of my pure readers)
Saturday, September 01, 2007
Thursday, August 30, 2007
Things random people have googled in the last week that brought them to this blog:
Monday, August 27, 2007
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Highlights: we stayed in an old lady's basement for $20 a night, stuck pins in a map representing our homes, visited 4 separate Wegman's stores, saw the sun NEVER (which is pretty standard for the world's cloudiest place), strolled down memory lane with some EFY tunes, got rage at times, reminisced about pagans and gross outs, hit up the sites, had a heart to heart with a champion missionary at the Smith farm, tried to get in a car that wasn't ours, heckled through our 343rd viewing of "The Restoration," strolled the pier on Lake Ontario, got up whenever we felt like it, did many a driveby, knocked a few unanswered doors and even tracked down one of our favorite Peruvians in her new store.
Great work, team.
Friday, August 24, 2007
Sunday, August 19, 2007
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
2. Buy a cat and let it climb on the stove while we finish cooking.
3. Ask them when they go home.
4. Treat them like Spiritual Pez Dispensers and ask things like: "Tell me something spiritual about your mission," or "What's the hardest part so far?" or "How often do you get homesick?" or "Tell me something inspirational."
5. Offer to set them up with a brother/cousin/nephew/friend.
6. Request a specific spiritual message from them. "How about something from Lesson 5?"
7. Pour them coffee.
8. Yell, "Gotta go!" and smile sweetly, leaving them alone with husband just to see if they panic.
9. Pretend they were at the wrong house.
10. Say, "Wow, I guess the old saying 'sister missionaries are worth the weight' applies now, doesn't it?"
Friday, August 10, 2007
Hulk Hogan (practically)
We meet him, and hate him.
He makes unfunny jokes, laughs at his unfunny self
And won't stop talking about his concealed weapons permit.
She likes him (how? she's sane!), we hate him
He gets clingy and creepy and mean
racist jokes "but I'm only kidding!" alarm and irritate
He goes to archery tournaments (on purpose)
And if he brags about hunting cats one more time...
But she's allowed to date him,
we let her,
he buys us food.
Tuesday, August 07, 2007
Monday, August 06, 2007
My trainer on the mish hailed from the exotic land of French Polynesia, only people could never remember where she was from and usually thought she said "Haiti" instead of "Tahiti." I've been thinking about her this week as she got hitched last Friday, turned the big 26 on Saturday, and is a measly 4700 miles away from here. Her wish: to marry a fellow Tahitian with a strong testimony who doesn't stress and speaks English. And it just came true! Wowza!
A few tidbits about my Tahitian:
1. In French, "salad" is said almost exactly the same as in English but with an emphasis on the "lad." She was scared she'd say it weird, so everytime someone said "Would you like salad or applesauce?" she'd say applesauce even though she hates it.
2. She enjoyed saying RESTORE-ation and thought it made more sense than REST-oration, since the gospel was, after all, REstored.
3. People often (I am not making this up) asked her if she lived in a tree.
4. She mixed up the difference between "would" and "will" and just thinks they are both future, so often said cute things like "I would go get that later..." and it killed me.
5. She has the longest hair I have ever seen on any human being.
6. She has an incredible powerhouse testimony and is one of the most gentle, peaceful souls around (must be the island living...)
6. She is one of my all-time favorite people on earth.
As an ode to the Tahitian Wonder, I therefore include a pseudo-poem I wrote on the mission about our six hilarious weeks together. Heart you, Sinj.
In Tahiti, We Don’t Stress
So we can crack each other up – you practice your English and I’ll practice my French and since you like the way it sounds when we say, “I’m in trouble” and “salad” you’ll say it over and over again, and when you figure out the word for traffic light you’ll say it all day.
And when the man shoveling his driveway stopped to talk to us and my hat was red and yours was black and we couldn’t feel our toes and after 20 minutes of talking and praying my brains out he said no thank you and I wanted to cry and you put your hand on my shoulder and said his heart was closed so we raced up the next abnormally steep driveway, me first since my boots were bigger so I could be like a snowplow.
That might’ve been when we met Nate who was in a Christian rock band and said he had a heart for Jesus and that the doctor told him he was 20 pounds underweight and he explained his sideburns to us and we talked about his dog named Oreo, an island called Raiatea and a man named Moroni he didn’t believe in but we wanted him to. His brother pretended he wasn’t listening but we knew he was and one day he’ll knock doors too I bet.
And balding Becky said she could never get baptized because her ear hurts when it gets wet and also she wanted to know how we could live on the sun because wouldn’t it be really hot, and she lived kind of by this family whose house I could never find in the dark and they knew about Mormons from a radio show. Pete the dad had a dream when his own dad died that actually boosted his faith for when the dog (that was bigger than their kids) died too. We laughed when they showed us their wedding pictures and even explained the refreshments there and for the first time I felt God’s love for someone else and you smiled and we brought them hot chocolate.
Which is understandable since we had tons, given to us by the same people who gave us matching pajamas, frozen meatloaf and many pep talks when it was cold and later we played dodgeball with Pat who is probably still waiting for an answer and if I hit him it meant he had to read which happened rarely but at least he went to seminary and we think he understood priesthood.
Or when that Indian family repeated our prayer and we ate no joke the best meal of our lives with a couple that had a cartoon hanging up of when they eloped and we watched the Avery kids beg their parents to please just try this church once so they could see what it was like – and all that snow!
You loved the snow and hated the cold but hey who doesn’t, so we ate one more cheeseburger and tried (unsuccessfully) one more random recipe, then I put on two skirts and three sweaters and you wrapped multiple scarves around your face and some angry man took our picture and we prayed for warmth and rang the doorbell.
Thursday, August 02, 2007
Sunday, July 29, 2007
Eating out is like our hobby, and come on, probably cheaper than golf or Marie Osmond dolls (plus, eating out is fun instead of lame...no offense intended to golfers, tons of offense intended to the Home Shopping Network). And we respect people who are into cooking, we really do, but what's starting to kill me is how often food-preparation-related comments are directed only at me. Why?? Do I look domestic? Do I send off the tell-me-about-food vibe? Do people look at me and think, "I bet she makes tarts while learning torts?" Or perhaps it's bc I'm a she, but then again, IT'S 2007.
Example: a neighbor came by the other day and made a joke, looking only at me, about how next time, he wanted brownies. Come on! Do I look like I enjoy 1950s advice such as "Let him talk first - remember, his topics of conversation are more important than yours," or my personal favorite, "Don't ask him questions about his actions or question his judgment or integrity. Remember, he is the master of the house and as such will always exercise his will with fairness and truthfulness. You have no right to question him. " Also, last week, husband and I were at a get-together when a well-intentioned man started telling us, and when I say "us" I mean "me," some tricks about lasagna. a) what? why? I have never made lasagna in my life and b) why are meal comments directed only at me? Will we not both eat them? Since we have no kids and are both employed and about to be in intense graduate programs, why would anyone guess that I am the only one who whips us up some dinner?
The thing is, we are interested in learning how to make easy things (note the "we"), preferably with ingredients we can pronounce, so maybe it's not fair for me to rage. But it's my blog, so I don't have to be fair...yessssss!
And at some point in our lives, I hope we manage to have kids, and when we do, I hope I get to hang out with them a lot, and if my full-time gig is to rock out at home, then of course I will likely prepare many of our meals. (Though last I heard, husband was lobbying for me to be a hot shot attorney and him to be a stay-at-home dad, er, Xbox champ...not going to happen, honey)... So when one of us has more free time than the other, that one will spend time in the kitchen, and that one will likely be me. But that time is not now. And the year is 2007. Women can vote now, too. Thank you for your time.
Monday, July 23, 2007
"Well, uhh, I don’t know where he’s NOT. It wouldn’t be inaccurate to assume that I couldn’t exactly not say that it is or isn’t almost partially incorrect. "
Prince (the royalty, not the artist formerly known as): "So you do know where he is?"
"On the contrary. I possibly more or less not definitely rejected the idea in no way with any amount of uncertainty that I undeniably do or do not know where he shouldn’t probably be. If that indeed wasn’t where he isn’t. Even if he wasn’t where I knew he was…"
Today at my awesome "lawyertype work" job (as my busfriend likes to call it), I felt just like this goofy nose-length-varying marionnette when I learned that in a particular circumstance, you have the burden of proving something is "not inconsistent" with the rest of the record. Now, I attended second grade (or "grade 2" as it's called in the Motherland), so I know a thing or two about prefixes and suffixes and their general meanings, so I know "in" usually means "not." Right?? So not inconsistent = not not consistent and the nots cancel each other out so = consistent?
(inconsistent: adj. not consistent in principles, conduct...at least, that's what dictionary.com told me, and if there is one thing I know in this world, it's that the Internets don't lie.)
I then proceeded to read several paragraphs about how "not inconsistent" is different from "consistent" because the conclusion need not be directly supported by the record ("consistent"), it just can't directly contradict anything else that has been presented (be inconsistent). So, not inconsistent does not equal consistent.
*I know "Pinocchio" looks weird but I totally checked the spelling.
Thursday, July 19, 2007
Let us give thanks.
Monday, July 16, 2007
Readers, this rating is apparently because my blog says "kill" 7 times, "hurt" twice and "dangerous" once. It makes me sound violent, but really I am full of love. It's good, except for...Doesn't it understand that I only used kill because it was accidentally used instead of keel??
Maybe it doesn't matter.
Sigh. My excuses mean nothing. People like me are the reason for posters like this:
Sunday, July 15, 2007
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
- telegraph-service rater (Just like gymnastics...I liked that telegraph, but the landing was rough. 8.5!)
- weave-defect-charting clerk (Mayday! Mayday! Crappy hairdresser alert!)
- cutter-and-paster, press clippings (psst...ever heard of CTRL-C and CTRL-V? It's 2007)
- scoreboard operator
- nut sorter (this one looks like an uber-maniac...take him away! This one....hrmmm...medium psycho...)
- cigarette-making-machine catcher (I don't know if it's catching the cigarettes or the machines, but either way, I like it)
- egg processor (i thought those were called chickens.)
- napper tender (code for baby-sitter?)
- plastic design applier (The old ladies who put clingy hearts on their windows on Valentine's Day can get PAID for that?)
- polisher of eyeglass frames (grandparents all over America could be making millions!)
- lens inserter (wtf)
- dipper of clock and watch hands (like Dairy Queen? With sprinkles?)
- golf ball trimmer (WTF!)
- finisher (OF WHAT? I finish a fountain drink each day...turns out that's a job)
- buckle wire inserter
- button reclaimer (Aha! Stand back! That's mine!)
- puller through (Good news, perseverant Americans! Hang in there, and you'll get paid somehow).
Just take a minute to imagine any of those on a business card. Visit http://www.ssas.com/ and click on 137 Unskilled Sedentary Occupations near the bottom for more info....
Turns out, if law school doesn't work out, I'll always have options.
Saturday, July 07, 2007
They might kill over someone breaking into their home? They might kill over an affair (and try to use the heat of passion defense)? They might kill over someone borrowing their shoes with no permission? You find it bizarre and a little creepy. Then, after a few minutes, you realize they mean "keel," not kill, and feel a little better. A lesson to prevent this in the future:
to keel over is to fall as in faint, or to capsize or turn over.
to kill is to cause death or commit murder.
They sound similar, and in a world where people sometimes write "Lake Pal" instead of Lake Powell, I can understand the mix up. So, fainting okay, killing not.
Thursday, July 05, 2007
1. DISH WASHER. This means that when we neglect our dishes for several days, we no longer have to look at them.
2. GARBAGE DISPOSAL, which means no more scooping out goopy slime scraps and running to the trash can.
3. One and a half bathrooms = two toilets = happy marriage. And speaking of bathrooms, one is upstairs and one is downstairs, which means you do not have to go up and down the stairs in the middle of the night, which means peace.
4. Air conditioning. The fans aka circling helicopters at our bedside have just become a thing of the past.
5. Carport. Next winter, no car scraping at the bumcrack of dawn!
6. A normal sized living room means we can fit a couch AND loveseat as opposed to just a loveseat. This means that if someone comes over, we can (gasp!) all take a seat, AT. THE. SAME. TIME.
7. No hilarious neighborhood kids doorbell ditching....YET. (At the last place, our 6-year-old friend doorbell ditched us each Saturday without fail, and once, Husband yelled "I caught you!" and kid responded, shouting "No you didn't!")
We miss you, little maniac.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
Overview: According to the undisputed facts, the cat had never bitten anyone, nor exhibited any aggressive tendencies prior to this incident. The individual alleged that the cat owners acted negligently in allowing their cat to roam freely and to attack her. The individual did not allege that any particular circumstances existed that should have put the cat owners on notice that their cat would be violent or that they needed to prevent it from coming into contact with the individual. Rather, the individual argued that any contact between a cat and a human being was fraught with danger. Such contacts occurred frequently, were not normally dangerous, and, absent an owner's knowledge of particular facts that would render an injury foreseeable, did not present circumstances for which liability arose. Furthermore, the attack by the cat was unforeseeable, as there were no circumstances that alerted the cat owners to the possibility that their cat would act aggressively. Absent foreseeability, the cat owners owed no duty to restrain their cat under the common law, municipal law, or state law.
Translation: Mean cat posing as nice cat bit a lady's hand. Lady whose hand got hurt thinks the cat's owner is a jerk and should have to pay $40,000 for the infection she got when the bite aggravated her previously medically stable autoimmune disorder. Court says look lady, it's a cat.
How can you hate law school after something like that?
Friday, June 22, 2007
Sweaty Random, oblivious to the fact that I am reading AND have headphones in: How long have you been married?
SR: How long have you been married?
Me: Six months.
(huge awkward pause where he just smiles and nods at me)...
Me: How long have YOU been married?
SR: Five years. Best five years of my life.
Me: Cool. (big pause where he stares and nods some more) Any kids?
SR: Yeah, four boys and three girls. The oldest one is 19 and plays football at the U and the youngest one will be born in July. They all have A names (he lists the names and says "Alicia" twice).
Me: Wow! 7 kids in 5 years!
SR: Well, they're my step-kids, because they're my wife's kids. I served my mission in Brazil, and we went there on our honeymoon. because my wife's dad is a pilot so we can fly places for free. Next month we're going to Hawaii for our 5 year anniversary.
Me: Hawaii! Awesome. What about the baby?
SR: The baby's coming, too. We're leaving July 13 and the baby is coming July 15. Her uncle is a doctor, so he'll just take care of that while we're there. But our Brazil trip was way fun, and my mission was awesome.
Me: Cool. When were you there?
SR: 1998-2001. I served a 3 year mission because of extensions and transfers and stuff.
Me: So, your wife must be a lot older than you.
SR: No, she's actually younger than me. I'm 28 and she's 26.
Me: (confused pause as I do the math between her 19 year old kid and her age)
SR: She's way taller than me too. I'm only 5'8".
Me: Really? How tall is she?
Me: Whoa! So she can carry you around and stuff?
SR: Yeah, she gives me piggy backs a lot. Her brother's 8 feet tall, playing professional basketball in the Ukraine right now. Our son, who plays football, he's 6'9" too.
Me: Wow. That's huge. He must weigh a lot.
SR: Yeah, he's 175 lbs. He's friends with the coach, so we get really good seats, and the coach said I can sit on the sidelines and even come into the locker room whenever I want. Our son is studying speech pathology. I do construction work, but I'd like to get into something like that.
Me: Cool. What does your wife do?
SR: She actually has a law degree under her belt, so she is looking for stuff like lawyer work right now.
Me: Really? Wow. Where'd she go to law school?
SR: Back east. Harvard. She does criminal law.
Conversation overheard next to us: "Colorado Springs? No way! My high school sweetheart's step-dad's brother was sheriff in the neighboring county!"
Thursday, June 21, 2007
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
Thanks to Charlott and Steve (our two most happily hitched friends), this week has been a whirlwind of Speed Scrabble, culminating in this evening's 5-games-in-a-row sweepstakes. All the tiles go face down, each person grabs 7 of them, then you just make your own little batch of words, all attaching. When you use all 7 of your tiles, you yell "go!" and everyone grabs another one...keep going til all the tiles are gone and the first person uses all of theirs! I LOVE YOU, SPEED SCRABBLE. Of course, as usual, husband won, but I fought a good fight til the bitter end, and we were proud of ourselves for the following:
if that's not a beautiful poem, I don't know what is.
Sunday, June 17, 2007
Seriously folks, I'm talking about a case we studied in law school last year and the story behind the documentary we saw last night called "Crazy Love." Piece of advice: if someone tries to kill you, DO NOT MARRY HIM. And if he then cheats, stalks, threatens constantly, DO NOT STAY MARRIED. Just wanted to warn any of you in case you end up in this lady's situation.
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
"Those two? Oh, ____ parking ___ car over ____."
YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Yes, I'll admit, I've been known to accidentally write "to" when I mean "too," or pausing to think about "effect" and "affect," and frankly, I can rarely keep reign and rein straight...and I overuse/misuse ellipses all the time (...) yet here I am, full of rage. Remember: your own word habits don't have to be perfect in order for you to complain about other people!
How about "it's" v. "its." Come on, America! The apostrophe means a contraction. I know that's hard to grasp since we write things like "Gurrbonzo's" and it's possessive, but STILL. And seriously, how about "supposably." What IS that? Supposedly's obnoxious, hairy cousin?
Monday, June 11, 2007
Saturday, June 09, 2007
Monday, June 04, 2007
As sign of seriousness about this very urgent matter please do confirm the following details to me:
Thursday, May 31, 2007
I appreciate you, and you've brought a lot into my life, especially when I got home from my mission and worked out with a CD player and felt like Austin Powers and had good friends explain to me the wonder of Tunes Inside Computers That Can Magically Transfer To A Little Computer Smaller Than My Hand And Remain In Both Places Forever. You and I, we have a long history, and it's my love for you that leads me to such confusion right now. How could you do this to me? I just want to know WHY.
I know the list is for me because it says "Just For You" at the top and has ten song suggestions for me. What I'm wanting to know right now is why the freak this is how the list begins:
2. Gettin' Jiggy Wit It
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
Thursday, May 24, 2007
2. I get to hang out with kids who crack me up (for example, when the judge asks if they have any questions for me, they all raise their hands and yell things like "Do you have any pets??" and "What's your favorite animal??!")
3. I can have lunch dates whenever I please.
4. I learn not to do drugs or neglect my future children or yell obscenities at my husband. This makes him love me extra and not get mad when I order 14 books for S!R!E! online and never do the dishes or put away my laundry.
5. I get to make friends with the court reporters and then they show me their machines and teach me about court reporter school and spelling phonetically with only 16 keys, and no I don't care if that makes me sound like a 5th-grader on a field trip, because it's awesome.
6. I get to make friends with the officers who transport people from prison and show me their taser guns and how to pounce at a moment's notice.
7. It makes my husband think he's married to a grown-up.
8. So what if I don't get paid? That just means they don't own my butt the way your job owns yours.