Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Which way did she go?

I can't imagine that anyone reads this with any regularity, but if you happen upon it and are wondering why this jo! character never updates, perhaps you should go and check out...


That's my travel blog while I have grand adventures down Australia way. Check it out! Hope you like it!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Super Fun Movie Meme

*I know I suck and never update this. I promise that will change, probably around the time I move to Australia in a couple of months. More on that later. Anyway, I came across this meme and simply couldn't say no. I love movies, especially quoting them. Have fun!

1. Pick 15 of your favorite movies.
2. Go to IMDb and find a quote from each movie.
3. Post them here for everyone to guess.
4. Strike it out when someone guesses correctly, and put who guessed it and the movie.
5. No Googling/using IMDb search functions.

1. Every time they run, we take a shot!

2. There's nothing on him 'til '46, when he was picked up in El Paso, Texas, for trying to smuggle a truckload of rich white Americans across the border into Mexico to pick melons.

3. Christmas is not "clothing optional" this year - we have a guest.

4. He's teaching me to change my instincts... or at least ignore them.

5. We didn't need dialogue. We had faces!

6. Dammit, Franklin, I have better things to do than stand around listening to you quote yourself!

7. Put me in your pocket, Mike.

8. As long as there's, you know, sex and drugs, I can do without the rock and roll.

9. Oh. Where you going?... Oh, you men are all alike. Seven or eight quick ones and then you're out with the boys to boast and brag. YOU BETTER KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT. Oh... I think I love him.

10. Strong men also cry... strong men also cry.

11. He really is in love with himself. I thought it was just a summer thing.

12. What are you afraid of, a fate worse than death?
~No, just death. Isn't that enough?

13. Let me break it down like a fraction.

14. You a Yankees fan?
~No, Baltimore.
Baltimore? That's like being hit in the head with a crow bar once a day.

15. Water polo? Isn't that terribly dangerous?
~I'll say! I had two ponies drowned under me.

Friday, March 14, 2008

I Meant What I Said and I Said What I Meant

I am an avid movie watcher. This should not be news.

Furthering my status as movie nerd, I also have a favorite movie critic. I will do anything A.O. Scott tells me to. He would probably be weirded out by how much I bring his opinions up at the dinner table.

So this morning, reading the New York Times in my office, I glanced at the one sentence teaser of his review for Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who:

"What distinguishes “Horton Hears a Who!” from the other recent Dr. Seuss film adaptations is that it is not one of the worst movies ever made."
This guy gets it.
You can read the rest of the review here.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Bad jokes, Lord! I love 'em!

I have a Groundskeeper Willie figurine on my desk. I got it about 9 years ago at a Burger King in a kids meal. (This was long before I started boycotting them for being such jack-holes to migrant workers-- bastards.) Anyway, he's dressed as the grim reaper, but he is holding a broom in a menacing pose, as janitors are wont to do. He actaully came on a little stand that has since been lost (Damn you, Chronic Messy Desk Disorder!), but it was probably the funniest thing I ever owned.

It was a tomb stone, and on one side it said:

The Grim Sweeper

and on the other:

Prepare to meet thy broom!


Monday, May 21, 2007

How to Operate the Shower Curtain

I know that I haven't posted here in a long long while. I definitely owe you lots of stories. Someday soon I will be back posting in earnest, but in the mean time, this is one of the funniest things I have ever read and I simply had to share it with you! Please enjoy~
How to Operate the Shower Curtain

by Ian Frazier

Dear Guest: The shower curtain in this bathroom has been purchased with care at a reputable “big box” store in order to provide maximum convenience in showering. After you have read these instructions, you will find with a little practice that our shower curtain is as easy to use as the one you have at home.

You’ll note that the shower curtain consists of several parts. The top hem, closest to the ceiling, contains a series of regularly spaced holes designed for the insertion of shower-curtain rings. As this part receives much of the everyday strain of usage, it must be handled correctly. Grasp the shower curtain by its leading edge and gently pull until it is flush with the wall. Step into the tub, if you have not already done so. Then take the other edge of shower curtain and cautiously pull it in opposite direction until it, too, adjoins the wall. A little moisture between shower curtain and wall tiles will help curtain to stick.

Keep in mind that normal bathing will cause you unavoidably to bump against shower curtain, which may cling to you for a moment owing to the natural adhesiveness of water. Some guests find the sensation of wet plastic on their naked flesh upsetting, and overreact to it. Instead, pinch the shower curtain between your thumb and forefinger near where it is adhering to you and simply move away from it until it is disengaged. Then, with the ends of your fingers, push it back to where it is supposed to be.

If shower curtain reattaches itself to you, repeat process above. Under certain atmospheric conditions, a convection effect creates air currents outside shower curtain which will press it against you on all sides no matter what you do. If this happens, stand directly under showerhead until bathroom microclimate stabilizes.

Many guests are surprised to learn that all water pipes in our system run off a single riser. This means that the opening of any hot or cold tap, or the flushing of a toilet, interrupts flow to shower. If you find water becoming extremely hot (or cold), exit tub promptly while using a sweeping motion with one arm to push shower curtain aside.
REMEMBER TO KEEP SHOWER CURTAIN INSIDE TUB AT ALL TIMES! Failure to do this may result in baseboard rot, wallpaper mildew, destruction of living-room ceiling below, and possible dripping onto catered refreshments at social event in your honor that you are about to attend. So be careful!

This shower curtain comes equipped with small magnets in the shape of disks which have been sewn into the bottom hem at intervals. These serve no purpose whatsoever and may be ignored. Please do not tamper with them. The vertical lines, or pleats, which you may have wondered about, are there for a simple reason: user safety. If you have to move from the tub fast, as outlined above, the easy accordion-type folding motion of the pleats makes that possible. The gray substance in some of the inner pleat folds is a kind of insignificant mildew, less toxic than what is found on some foreign cheeses.

When detaching shower curtain from clinging to you or when exiting tub during a change in water temperature, bear in mind that there are seventeen mostly empty plastic bottles of shampoo on tub edge next to wall. These bottles have accumulated in this area over time. Many have been set upside down in order to concentrate the last amounts of fluid in their cap mechanisms, and are balanced lightly. Inadvertent contact with a thigh or knee can cause all the bottles to be knocked over and to tumble into the tub or behind it. If this should somehow happen, we ask that you kindly pick the bottles up and put them back in the same order in which you found them. Thank you.

While picking up the bottles, a guest occasionally will lose his or her balance temporarily, and, in even rarer cases, fall. If you find this occurring, remember that panic is the enemy here. Let your body go limp, while reminding yourself that the shower curtain is not designed to bear your weight. Grabbing onto it will only complicate the situation.

If, in a “worst case” scenario, you do take hold of the shower curtain, and the curtain rings tear through the holes in the upper hem as you were warned they might, remain motionless and relaxed in the position in which you come to rest. If subsequently you hear a knock on the bathroom door, respond to any questions by saying either “Fine” or “No, I’m fine.” When the questioner goes away, stand up, turn off shower, and lay shower curtain flat on floor and up against tub so you can see the extent of the damage. With a sharp object—a nail file, a pen, or your teeth—make new holes in top hem next to the ones that tore through.

Now lift shower curtain with both hands and reattach it to shower-curtain rings by unclipping, inserting, and reclipping them. If during this process the shower curtain slides down and again goes onto you, reach behind you to shelf under medicine cabinet, take nail file or curved fingernail scissors, and perform short, brisk slashing jabs on shower curtain to cut it back. It can always be repaired later with safety pins or adhesive tape from your toiletries kit.

At this point, you may prefer to get the shower curtain out of your way entirely by gathering it up with both arms and ripping it down with a sharp yank. Now place it in the waste receptacle next to the john. In order that anyone who might be overhearing you will know that you are still all right, sing “Fat Bottomed Girls,” by Queen, as loudly as necessary. While waiting for tub to fill, wedge shower curtain into waste receptacle more firmly by treading it underfoot with a regular high-knee action as if marching in place.

We are happy to have you as our guest. There are many choices you could have made, but you are here, and we appreciate that. Operating the shower curtain is kind of tricky. Nobody is denying that. If you do not wish to deal with it, or if you would rather skip the whole subject for reasons you do not care to reveal, we accept your decision. You did not ask to be born. There is no need ever to touch the shower curtain again. If you would like to receive assistance, pound on the door, weep inconsolably, and someone will be along.


Friday, March 09, 2007

Little Boxes Made of Ticky Tacky

Damn that brown box. Damn it to Hades.

I am going on a service trip to El Salvador tomorrow for the next week. I am super super excited about this opportunity (who wouldn't be, right?); in addition to helping build a health clinic in one village and a senior center in another, the group I am going with is bringing loads of stuff to donate to the people, which is amazingly cool!

I come from a large family of pack rats (let's just say that my CMDD is nothing compared to my father's), but we recognize it about ourselves. Though all of us have bursting wardrobes, I think there is a general effort to keep it at bay through regular runs to Goodwill or Salvation Army. This means that at any given time, there are several boxes and bags full of second-hand clothing in the upstairs hallway.

Yesterday, I had the idea to go through the assorted boxes and bags and try to find summer clothing to bring with me to El Salvador. All was going well until I got to the last box. It was a simple, run-of-the-mill brown box, medium size. All I wanted to do was open, extricate the appropriate clothing, and go on my merry way.

And the box would not stay open.

Every time I lofted one of those blasted flaps, it would stubbornly return to the closed position, often with a cheeky scratch on my arm.

Every. damn. time.

I tried to maintain my typically demure demeanor, but this was a particularly ornery box. It wasn't long until I was kicking and punching it and screaming obscenities at it, the tendons in my neck almost to the breaking point with the strain.

I hated that box.

Finally, I viciously wrestled the clothing from its interior and stormed into my room and slammed the door. Yes. I slammed the door at a brown cardboard box.

Today, the box was still in the hall. It is located right outside my door, and every time I passed it, I glared at it. I leered. I grumbled angrily in its direction. I held a grudge against a box.

Just a few moments ago, my mom asked me to empty the box into a green garbage bag so that the box could be used to pack old dishes (another attempt to combat our communal pack rat tendencies). Nothing gave me more pleasure than to roughly grab the box and shake it upside-down, robbing it of its only dignity, the ability to contain things.

And I laughed cruelly.

It was at this moment that I realized two things.

First of all, it is just a box.

Second of all, no box deserves this kind of emotional exertion.

I was reminded of one of the many books I like to pretend I have read, C.S. Lewis' Screwtape Letters. As I recall from hearing other people talk who had actually read the book, Screwtape, the nephew of Satan, is a devil in training. He is advised not to target people to become evil, but to target the people around them to become annoying, and the person will become evil on their own.

What if Screwtape was targeting the box in order to turn me evil? Am I that easy a target? Gosh, he doesn't even have to use animate objects to get to me! I just about lost it over a box!

That's a humbling experience.

I hope they don't have corrugated cardboard in Central America.

Monday, March 05, 2007

It Was Like Touching The Shroud of Turin

I think I have Chronic Messy-Desk Disorder (CMDD).

I have been dealing with this tribulation for sometime. There was a time when I only had one desk to worry about, so it felt contained. Now, I have two rather large desks (well, the in my bedroom is rather large, the one in my office is a monstrosity), and the disorder has caught me in a vice-like grip. It's a trial, but I am going to carry on the good fight and try to live with it. We all have our crosses to bear, right?

My Ecuadorian room mate is, naturally, as neat as a pin. (I am not saying that as a generalization of all Ecuadorians, but more as an ironic foil to my own person).

She never says anything about the epic mountain of papers and knick knacks that are rumored to house a desk sitting right there in the room.
She never demands that I clean up my crap before she goes berserk with the chaos of it all.

She never points out that all of the mess is mine and not hers-- well, actually, she does do that. She points that out on a daily basis, but she never makes me feel bad about it.

The point is that she is out of town this weekend, and I thought that to be nice, I would clean off my desk as a surprise for her return. And you would not believe the treasures that I have recovered in the process!

I found three sticks of half-used deodorant. Three. That means that I lost and replaced two different sticks of deodorant. And they were both on my desk, where I spend at least 8 hours a day.

I found a box that housed at least 75 tootsie roll wrappers with the white edges neatly trimmed off. I dimly recall doing this, mindlessly wielding scissors (which I also found!) while watching every episode of Heroes and The Office that I could find online. But if I had a reason for it, it has long been forgotten.

I found 5 pairs of sunglasses. Ok, technically my everyday-pair were never missing; they always have a spot of reverence on top of any heap that develops on the desk. This girl never makes a move without her sunglasses. The other 4 offer a lot of variety in ocular protection:

Exhibit A: plain black, but they only cost a dollar!

Exhibit B: metallic blue with a kind of wanna-be-Oakley feel about them. The rubber on the arms and nose bit is a little bit of overkill, but I'm pretty sure they were free. Or dirt cheap.

Exhibit C: sparkling burgundy felt with red lenses. The frames extend up past the eyes for a wonderful feathered-wing effect. I wore them all day long on Mardi Gras.

Exhibit D: bright orange frames, approx. 1 foot across the front. But what really makes them eye-catching (HA! no pun intended! that's fantastic! eye-catching!!!) are the diminutive yellow stars at the corners of the lenses.

I found a brochure from the "John Adams Unbound" display at the Boston Public Library. That was an amazing experience. I actually saw his handwritten notes in the margins of the books that made up his impressive personal library. I would be lying if I said that I didn't shed a tear at the wonder of it. Actually, I would be lying if I said that I didn't spend the entire hour and a half at the exhibit trying (with limited success) to choke back tears. I love John Adams.

I found the Bhagavad-Gita. Not the original, of course (that would have been weird, huh?), but a good translation. I think that more people should find that one. It's pretty powerful, even today, 2000 years after it was composed.

So, maybe I should try with more vigor to combat my CMDD. If nothing else, it supplies me with good blog fodder, right?