Sunday, July 30, 2006

Help! Someone has GOT TO stop my weblog personality quiz problem!

Last time I got sucked into that evil place I was there for TWO HOURS. And do you know what I learned?

Which X-Man am I? Storm.
Which Sesame Street Character? Bert.
What flavor ice cream? Strawberry.
What color red? Tomato.
And so much more.

Your Theme Song is Back in Black by AC/DC

"Back in black, I hit the sack,
I've been too long, I'm glad to be back"

Things sometimes get really crazy for you, and sometimes you have to get away from all the chaos.
But each time you stage your comeback, it's even better than the last!

You Belong in 1970

If you scored...

1950 - 1959: You're fun loving, romantic, and more than a little innocent. See you at the drive in!

1960 - 1969: You are a free spirit with a huge heart. Love, peace, and happiness rule - oh, and drugs too.

1970 - 1979: Bold and brash, you take life by the horns. Whether you're partying or protesting, you give it your all!

1980 - 1989: Wild, over the top, and just a little bit cheesy. You're colorful at night - and successful during the day.

1990 - 1999: With you anything goes! You're grunge one day, ghetto fabulous the next. It's all good!

Your Inner Child Is Surprised

You see many things through the eyes of a child.
Meaning, you're rarely cynical or jaded.
You cherish all of the details in life.
Easily fascinated, you enjoy experiencing new things.

Your Vampire Name Is...

Empress of Prussia

I blame the 100 degree day and the stack of papers that are not, curiously, grading themselves for this horrible behavior.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Smart bats like big outdoor spaces. Dumb bats like my bedroom.

First off, I would like to direct your attention to the new addition "found film" in the General Goodness category of my sidebar. My friend Meg just sent it. A mysterious man buys old cameras that have film left in them and develops it. It will break your heart and you will be glad.

While I'm giving credit where credit is due, I have lovely Paige to thank for "pictures of walls" and remarkable Kate for "cats in sinks". (They are all three lovely AND remarkable; there is no favoritism.)

Now to business. Last night we had to capture and release the THIRD BAT IN A MONTH flying around my house. I don't care how death rock (I guess the kids call it "goth" these days) my roots. I'm not happy. The bats are not happy. What do I do? Where are they coming from?

Friday, July 21, 2006


This information was forwarded to me in an email (I put the important line in bold if you prefer to skim):

This month and next, Earth is catching up with Mars in an encounter
that will culminate in the closest approach between the two planets in
recorded history. The next time Mars may come this close is
in 2287. Due to the way Jupiter's gravity tugs on
Mars and perturbs its orbit, astronomers can only be
certain that Mars has not come this close to Earth
in the Last 5,000 years, but it may be as long as
60,000 years before it happens again.

The encounter will culminate on August 27th when
Mars comes to within 34,649,589 miles of Earth and
will be (next to the moon) the brightest object in
the night sky. It will attain a magnitude of -2.9
and will appear 25.11 arc seconds wide. At a modest
75-power magnification

Mars will look as large as the full moon to the naked eye.
Mars will be easy to spot. At the
beginning of August it will rise in the east at 10p.m.
and reach its azimuth at about 3 a.m.

By the end of August when the two planets are
closest, Mars will rise at nightfall and reach its
highest point in the sky at 12:30a.m. That's pretty
convenient to see something that no human being has
seen in recorded history. So, mark your calendar at
the beginning of August to see Mars grow
progressively brighter and brighter throughout the

Opinion Modification in Process, Possibly

I hate celery. Loathe it. I hate it most cooked, floating all flaccid and stringy in an otherwise lovely broth. No, I hate it most raw. To me, it tastes like how Barbie doll heads smell. I sort of like how Barbie doll heads smell, but not enough to eat one. Imagine, after fussily searching and picking out each little green crescent, there's a sickening, plasticky crunch in your last bite of potato salad at the family picnic! And cousin Zeppelin says "How can you hate celery? It doesn't taste like anything." Dumb cousin. (This is a composite character. I do not have a cousin Zeppelin nor any other cousin who has specifically confronted my celery problem.)

But once every two years or so, I crave ants on a log. If you don't know, that is a stalk of celery with peanut butter in the "u" part and raisins on top. I buy a bunch of celery and I think about how I'll have ants on a log for lunch, and I eat ants on a log every day for a week. It's great!

Then that week is over and I think, "What did I do? Celery is repugnant!" and all returns to normal.

I think these last couple weeks, Woody Allen has been like celery to me. After I wound up hating both Sleeper and Manhattan, P worriedly rushed over with Annie Hall (which had moments, I admit) and Bullets Over Broadway which is so far my favorite by a long shot. Woody Allen is just more interesting when played by John Cusack. Plus Jennifer Tilly rocks and completely steals the show. (And just last week my visiting friends and I watched her and her cleavage kick ass at celebrity poker.) Now, any second, the postman will be delivering Deconstructing Harry and Hannah and her Sisters to my home. I shall report soon whether or not they top off my contrary-to-normal Woody Allen glut or no.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Don't Worry, Be Happy on theremin

I have wanted a theremin for so very long. Clara Rockmore, the concert thereminst, is a heroine of mine. I am just posting this video so my bandmate Jennifer can see how versatile and important this instrument is and that it's not just for scary movie soundtracks. I'm sorry he's playing "Don't Worry, Be Happy," though.

Woody Allen. Huh.

Recently, I decided that I wanted to have an opinion on Woody Allen because I had none. I saw New York Stories when it first came out yeeears ago, and the only thing I recall is that most everyone else in the theater seemed "delighted" by the film, and I watched deadpan. Do you know what I mean by "delighted"? Letting rip with that kind of smarmy, reserved chuckle that has nothing to do with enjoyment, but rather is meant to indicate that the laugher "gets" some obscure intellectual or cultural reference. "Maybe I'm not intellectual enough to appreciate Woody Allen," is the thought I was left with.

In the last few weeks I have watched Sleeper and Manhattan, and now I have an opinion which is that my intellect is just fine and Woody Allen is an irritating bore. But, I don't like to jump to conclusions. And I am the type of person that has to finish even the worst book or movie once I start it; otherwise, it remains so...unfinished....So, please advise: do I watch the pinnacle of Allen-ness,Annie Hall, to round out my experience, or do I cut my losses?

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

We Love Macaroni and Cheese

Last Sunday I dragged my slothful bum out of bed in time to get to the St. Paul farmers' market. I made enough pesto to last the rest of the summer and my house was bright with basil smell for two days. And today I'm roasting beets while I wait for the vet who makes house calls to arrive and check on my lethargic cat, Macaroni and Cheese (my favorite two year old named him fourteen years ago) (Peter asked if a vet who makes housecalls is expensive, and I realized I forgot to ask. Oh well. There's no alternative; this animal melts down at the sight of his carrier.) (What a great lot of parentheses.) So I am trying to stay busy and distracted. Writing isn't working especially well. My Kant-For-Kinda-Smart-Dummies book isn't working. Curiously, cleaning isn't working. So, I made my first "mix" which I have dubbed "lonely romantic mix" and it consists of the following songs:

Cloud Cult: Transistor Radio (go figure)
This Mortal Coil: Song to the Siren
Lhasa: De Cara A la Pared
Cat Power: The Moon
Calexico: Alone Again, Or
Linda and Teddy Thompson: Evona Darling
Dean Martin: Money Burns a Hole in my Pocket
Jeff Buckley: Hallelujah
Seu Jorge: Life on Mars?
Flaming Lips: Do You Realize??
Elvis Costello: Almost Blue
The Jayhawks: Blue
Cat Power: After it All
Elliot Smith: Strung Out Again
Echo and the Bunnymen: What if We Are
Richard and Linda Thompson: Dimming of the Day/Dargai

I am currently feeling neither particularly lonely nor romantic by the way. The mix was originally titled Death by Pretty, and may revert back, except I feel like I stole that name from somewhere. (I don't think I invented "lonely romantic" either but it is generic enough to be public domain.)

If anybody wants to come over and gorge him/herself on ridiculous portions of summer or petit pan squash, that would probably be the most helpful thing. Otherwise I'll get back to work. I have managed some revision today. Here's proof:


I lied about believing the lie.
I’m tired of the water running out.
That the ocean is endless, yet I will
still be thirsty when I’m dead,
buzzed on the miniscule reflection of stars,
and the moon – that shovel with a face:
Some truths make nothing better.

This is no kind of sonnet; I’m sorry.
Poor moon I don’t want. Poor
Shakespeare we can deposit in a boat.
A single day keeps on ending
like a diorama after the science fair.
Like a book of psalms. Separate
pillboxes. Whatever

we ingest and then we are changed.
I could have chosen to keep this to myself.


When we think we become a structure.
Box-like? Sometimes. Still, not very
cleverly, we mostly react to things.
Like getting alarmed by an alarm.
Or by the used up goodnesses.
Another example is how no one

ever asks what a key is. We always
ask what a key is to. There is no
key to a doll head in the road,
its eyes stabbed out. Somewhere
in a house on my block there remains
a box a doll should go in.

At least, I don’t recognize the key
in that scenario, which could mean
my original intention may not have been
the best. That has only just occurred to me.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Transistor Radio

Love Them.

This is Cloud Cult. I love them. I believe you should love them, too.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

More fireworks, please

Having lived near the state capitol for a decade, fireworks are over for me. We have a five day celebration called "Taste of Minnesota" where you can get corndogs, flat beer and sunburn while seeing such acts as Alice Cooper, Davey Jones, Soul Asylum, Herman's Hermits and David Cassidy perform before the nightly fireworks. Seriousy: it's a workweek of fireworks. The first night is nostalgic fun, the second is novel, the third is obligatory, the fourth is unsuccessfully ignored, the fifth interrupts the rented movie.
Nonetheless, a couple years have passed, and last night I went to a lovely firework watching gathering at a condo near all the explode-y action. My friend J and I stepped out onto the back stairwell before sunset and noticed a plane flying around with one of those big banners trailing behind it, and we were delighted. How festive and nostalgic, we thought. I was imagining it was possibly someone's elaborate marriage proposal.
It was a photograph of a ten week abortion. I know because it said so next to the photograph and there was a telephone number. T called the number; it was a recorded message to the effect of, "If you find this offensive, think of...."
So, kudos to those anti-choice supporters, for that brilliant feat of logical argumentation. Especially impressive was how it wasn't opportunistic at all. Plus the non-reliance on shock value.
But, I feel it important to report that though I am still infuriated when I think of it, the airplane didn't ruin our night. At one point I was even begifted with the memory of the rock classic "Ah Leah" by Donnie Iris. And the fireworks were pretty.
Now it's the real fourth of July and I think every single one of my neighbors has been shooting off fireworks for many hours and will be for many hours to come. I'll have to turn up the volume on the Paul Wellstone documentary I checked out from the library when I'm ready to watch it.
And, if this is a politically minded weblog entry, thus concludes probably the only politically minded weblog entry I shall ever write.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Good Quotes Found in an Old Notebook

“Writing is revenge on circumstance.” -- Louise Gluck

“…not being omniscient is a really big drag for me…” -- Charles Harper Webb

“I don’t think rhetoric works better than overhead projectors. Easier on the eyes, harder on the soul.” –- Francois Camoin

“Perception is the first act of imagination.” –- William Carlos Williams

“I must make that which is not whole my sanctuary.” -- Paul Valery

“Write like gods. Not like clerks.” –- Molly Daniels