Friday, November 28, 2008

Lazy Thanks

I have this habit of checking my blog every time I am online to see if it has been updated. Like I wouldn't have been the one that did it. I sometimes wish there were blog fairies who would throw me a metaphorical bone every now and then by hacking into my blog and writing something super stellar; at least post the equation to cold fusion, world peace or something.

Alas, that has not happened and as I see many a friend writing Thanksgiving posts I feel a little guilty. I myself, was a beneficiary of two delicious dinners of which all I had to provide was potatoes for one and a poinsettia for the other. (We didn't eat the poinsettia, which is good because I hear that plant is poisonous to animal and can therefore can only conclude that it would be poisonous to humans as well).

Anywho I had a great Thanksgiving filled with football, fun, food and friends. I am particularly mindful of how blessed I am as I switched back a forth between CNN covering the terrorist attacks in Mumbai to an episode of Sesame Street with Tina Fey playing a pirate. Don't really know why Tina Fey as a pirate elicits gratitude but I think it was the juxtaposition with the CNN news coverage? Thanks to all I spent my holiday with, and to all I wish I could have also spent it with. 

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Birds

 I saw this picture on one of the New York Times Picture of the week, which reminded my of alfred Hitchcock's The Birds and could not pass up the opportunity to relate my own Bird-like experience. For those of you who have not seen the movie, a small coastal town is plagued by avian attacks. They start out small but soon the birds are massing huge flocks and terrorizing, even killing people. 

Last Sunday evening at dusk as I walked to the School of Public Policy for a group meeting I noticed the silhouette of what had to be hundreds of black birds in the trees lining the road. Then, for no reason but to instill terror in my heart they simultaneously took flight and circled above me. I contemplated what to do. Do I run and let the birds know of my fear or can their beady eyes already sense it? I decided to play it cool. The school was only a block away and I was confident I could make it. After the initial terror that a classic horror film was about to be reanacted with me at the tributary sacrificial cast member vain side kicked in. 

I wondered what my odds were of being pooped on with hundreds of birds circling my head. I thought how my group would react if I showed up to our meeting with bird dropping splattered on my clothes and hair. Then I wondered if bird droppings may have any beneficial conditioning properties to hair. After rejecting that thought I am sure some other equally dramatic, absurd though entered my head and I forgot the whole situation until just now when I happened upon this picture. 

Monday, November 10, 2008

Cadaver Calculator: How much are you worth?

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My sister had this calculator on her blog that she got from her friend and I loved it so much I decided to post it. See how much your body would be worth. This could be really useful information for you or your family if the economy gets any worse.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Alive and Well

About a week ago I was reading my friend Emily's blog about an ROUS (rodent of unusual size) she saw. Although it cannot be independently confirmed most people she described it too said it was probably an opossum. She also thought what she saw bore a striking resemblance to Dick Cheney.

I am from Utah where the largest rodents I have seen are mice. Although I did see a muskrat or a beaver once in Idaho, I can't be sure which one. Since moving to Michigan I have wanted to see an  opossum (the only marsupial native to North America) alive and kicking. I see their lifeless carcasses on the road quite often but never alive, until last night. 

I left a friends movie party early, sorry Brian, to get some homework done. I  was driving on a secluded road near my house when what should wander across the road right in front of my car, an opossum! I slowed and took a good look at it. I now know why I see so many dead ones along the road because possums are not very quick on the ground. 

The opossum did have tiny beady red eyes which was a little frightening and yes perhaps even looked a little like Dick Cheney. I am just glad that I slowed down enough to have seen one alive and well. For all I know it could have been carrying its offspring in its pouch at that very moment and my alert, careful driving saved a whole opossum family. Not something I can say for a certain squirrel that met my car last year and now gathers nuts and berries in heaven instead of Ann Arbor Michigan. 

I would be interested to know who calls them possum v. opossum?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


I am ready to take this step. I am ready to declare Barack Obama the winner of the 2008 Presidential Election. I believe I have beat every network in my projection. Take that CNN. Eat my trash.

I want to update this post not only because I needed to change the picture but also because I had a great, nostalgic run this morning. I ran up Pontiac Trail and noticed the many Obama-Biden lawn signs and remembered how great I felt last night after the election was called for Obama- I should say after I called the election because I beat all the big networks.

But seriously, even greater than Barack Obama being president is the hope that I have felt in reference to politics and the political process. I have felt hope in my spiritual and interpersonal life but is has been a long time that I felt hope in reference to politics and direction that America is going. So whether Obama lives up to expectations or not-though I think he will- I am grateful to him for the very thing he campaigned, Hope and Change. 

Sunday, November 2, 2008


I usually forget it's Halloween until the day of the actual event when I see people dressed up oddly and then wonder why all these crazies are dressed up. This year however I could not escape it. My friend Amy wrote about how she doesn't much like Halloween and I mostly agree. I like the fall season and fall-like things that are associated with Halloween like scarecrows, corn stalk bundles, squashes carefully used as decorations and carving pumpkins. I DO NOT LIKE being scared nor watching scary movies so that whole aspect of Halloween is lost on me. 

This dislike was reinforce as I volunteered at a community center's haunted house and had small, crying children cling to my leg because they were too scared to go through the rest of the haunted house. However this experience also reminded me that I love seeing little kids dressed up. I think Halloween is very anti-climatic when there are no children around. 

As for dressing up myself its a toss up. I have had some really good costumes and some really bad costumes. I have given up on girly costumes like disco queen, princess or even cute woodland creatures (like a bunny), and for good reason. these costumes usually require some sort of make-up and whenever I put on any eye make-up more than simple mascara I look too much like a lady of the night. So instead of looking like a disco queen I look like a retro lady of the night or my princess costume means I look like a medieval or high class lady of the night. This entry is not meant to offend anyone, be they other costume wearers or actual ladies of the night. 

In order to remedy this problem I decided to cross dress as my friend Jonathan Fuentes. This idea really made Halloween fun. You have to understand that Jonathan is one of the most well-kempt males I know, perhaps bordering on metro (sorry Jonathan). He loves to wear sweater vests, a habit you might think he picked up from Harvard where he went to undergrad but he claims he wore them even in High School (probably the president of the chess club too). He also usually wears Khaki or Chino-like pants and has distinctive glasses. Recreating this look was cheap, but priceless. I easily found everything I needed at the Salvation Army and Target. I think the vest was sent straight from Heaven and may have even been donated by Jonathan mom after he out-grew it. 

Here are some pictures from my various halloween activities:

Jonathan Fuentes Squared-No folks he is not wearing a costume that is how he dresses everyday.

For FHE we carved random produce. I got the coconut and think I did a fine job considering the materials.