Saturday, July 29, 2006


today is the last day in my 20s. tomorrow is my golden birthday: 30 on the 30th! i'm looking forward to turning 30. to being more settled, being more at home in my own skin. anyway, that's what i'm hoping will happen. for me, the 20s were full of jangly nerves, fear of uncertainty and failure, and all the sorts of neuroses that plague you as you make your way into the world. not to say that they've gone away, i think i'm just familiar with them now, and can put them in their place. i find this upcoming decade to be full of possiblity, not the onset of old age. tomorrow i shall go to santa cruz with friends, ride the giant dipper (which i rode 4 times in 30 minutes with camp staff during 60 cent ride night for my 25th birthday. one of my favorite birthdays ever) and visit camp.

i am prevented from having a party shindig for the same reason as ever; it's summer and everyone is on vacation and spread out over the country. at least this time around, i didn't have to get lumped together on a cake with all the other summer birthdays at the end of the school year. in addtion, this allows me to spread out the celebrations. dinner with the fam wednesday night, lunch with a mentor-type on thursday, ice cream and a kick ass mexican food dinner with another mentor-type friend and her family last night. i'm milking this for all it's worth.

it's good to be home; i love patronizing some of my old haunts, walking in familiar neighborhoods. why, just on the way to this coffee shop, i passed one of the bars i went to on my 21st birthday. we got kicked out when i let one of my underage friends have a sip of my beer. my first beer, so the decision to share was not based on drunkeness, but rather naivete. silly. but i can say i got kicked out of a bar and seem as if i am somewhat dangerous/belligerent, for whatever that is worth.

rent on thursday night was pretty cool. the characters lost some of their mythic stature for me; as my friend bryce sang his heart out as roger, i couldn't help but remember him when he was in junior high and i was taller than him. those days are long ago. anyway, it was a great production. and a few of us waited outside the stage door trying not to look too much like groupies. the cast seems so much larger than life on stage; i was surprised to be standing eye to eye with the guy who played mark; and we walked with them to the BART station. the guy who played tom collins nearly jumped on me when a small hot doggy dog scuttled past us on the dingy city street, fleeing its owner; he thought it was a large rat.

some of the circumstances of rent seem dated now; the diagnosis of HIV positive is not the immediate death sentence that is was then. or is it? i wonder if the reality of AIDS is something we are just desensitized to now. still, as in many of the musicals i have seen, the yearning for connection and significance comes through with a clearness and and poignancy that takes one's breath away.

the chickens are turning on each other. it is quite annoying; perhaps they miss their owners. in the meantime, i do an easter bunny act and bestow fresh eggs on grateful friends.

well at the risk of inciting stalkers, but if you would like to send me cards/gifts/monetary donations/a pony for my birthday
send them to...

9 0 9 R i c h a r d Ln
D a n v i l l e CA 9 4 5 2 6

Thursday, July 27, 2006

"that's where the leprechaun lives. he tells me to burn things." ralph wiggum

praise the lord, it's only 83 degrees today. i can go outside without feeling like i'm an ant under a magnifying glass.

i am re-learning the difference between being an introvert and being a hermit. only talking to chickens for a few days makes me kind of weird. especially when the chickens seem to like attacking each other. it is good to have lunch with a wise and encouraging friend and going to see rent tonight in the city. those that live in the bay area refer to san francisco as "the city." never, never ever refer to it as "frisco." "san fran," perhaps. but never frisco. perhaps it is too much like "crisco." ew.

also re-learning that getting a job isn't so much what you know, but who you know. thus, my friend carol today introduced me to a woman with experience in the publishing world, who in turn will introduce me to another woman she worked with who has more direct experience in editing. i'll have my people call your people. and so on. good to take stock of things and refocus my energies. and to have face to face contact with people as opposed to the face-to-computer-screen interaction i have had lately.

one of these sundays i will stalk anne lamott at her church in marin. if only to tell her how much i love her books, much less pump her for job advice. in the small christian world anyway, there's bound to be somone at church here that knows someone who knows her. that's much preferable to stalking her. less chance of a restraining order.

i read memoirs of a geisha in the 2 days i was immoblized in the heat. 2 thumbs up. daring to take up the pen again to write, after a much needed hiatus from writing for several months.

the rhythm of social interaction is much different from school. it's so centralized there, especially since there's only one building for classes. schedules are more flexible, with periods of down time or procrastination. back in non-academic life, my friends are spread out over the bay area. they have more rigid schedules (except for my teaching friends). there is a larger degree of intentionality involved, less crossing of paths by chance. searching for a routine. missing living on one street with friends.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


hey it's only like 90 degrees today. much cooler. bizarre to say that.

i think i'm tanner than i have been in the past 3 years up in vancouver. it's not that i'm outside more under direct sunlight, but more like i have been slowly baked to a crisp like in an oven. i think i've been averaging drinking 3-4 full nalgenes a day. (how you like that for a water challenge, katie brown?)

the temperature dominates my thoughts and activities (or lack thereof). even with this current heat wave that is causing power outages, my main impression of californians upon my return is that they know little of hardship from the weather. it's just written on their faces and laidback manner. not necessarily a bad thing, it's just interesting to notice after being away.

the chickens are funny, though not great conversation partners. they are not as agile as i had previously thought chickens to be, and are pretty easy to catch, with the minimum of squawking and flapping. i don't know how rocky had such a hard time catching them in the movie.

i continue writing bland cover letters and polishing my resume. there's this secret code language to these things that i have never learned very well. you know, using words like "supervise" and "implement" or whatever. blech.

Friday, July 21, 2006

hot time, summer in the city

so, i'm living in the US, in california and in the suburbs. kind of a triple whammy of excess, car dependence, and consumerism. i miss walking everywhere, though i'm sure if i tried that right now, i'd evaporate before i got a mile.
i wonder how i will hold true to my values and things i learned at regent and manage to get by. because those things seem at odds a lot. then i read this article. and it gave me some measure of hope here in the suburban wasteland.

wandered around with the bros in san francisco and in berkeley today courtesy of BART - all fares are free on designated Spare the Air days. it's at least 15 degrees cooler on that side of the hills. berkeley is pretty close to being my favorite place on earth.

off to hang out with the chickens tomorrow. visualize the scene in rocky when mick forces him to chase chickens as a part of his training. but not until after i watch the time trial of the tour de france. go floyd go.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

still hot hot hot

today i rode a razor scooter to the neighborhood pool. i looked like hansel from zoolander. "that's hansel - he's so hot right now."
i borrowed it from my little friend kyle; he rode his bike. we went with his brother garrett and their mom marybeth. i've known both of the boys since they were teeny, and their mom since i was in high school and she was my youth group leader. it's fun to be spending time with them again. not to mention that it was amazing to jump in the water.

it's not that i don't like how warm it is. it's that i've become a total wimp from living farther north. guess i'll go out and eat 30 burritos with fresh guacamole tomorrow. don't laugh - i could totally do that.

a sight i will never get tired of for as long as i live: watching the fog roll over the hills into town. it means the end of the heat wave... i'm still waiting for it to arrive.

hot hot hot

i repeat, it is too hot to live. my mom passes most afternoons by going to the library because it is airconditioned there. i went once but i had to fight for a plug for my laptop. not so fun.

passing the time with a fierce tetris rivalry with my brother. i currently have the upper hand, with a score of 171227. yes! he always beats me, which makes me angry.

fortunately i am housesitting starting this weekend, so i can be more productive. whenver i am in my parents house, i fall into the black hole in front of the tv for hours at a time. i have watched more of the tour de france than i ever have in my life. at least i picked an exciting year to watch it. anyway, i'll be watering plants, reading on the patio, and taking care of 6 chickens. 3 full grown hens, and 3 baby chicks. looking forward to some good rest and reflection. barbecue party at "my" house this weekend. i'll even fry an egg on the sidewalk for you.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

what's grosser than gross?

in this corner:
the kfc bowl: a generous serving of our creamy mashed potatoes, sweet kernel corn, bite size pieces of all-white meat crispy chicken, topped with our homestyle gravy and 3-cheese blend.
and in this corner...
the taco bell crunch wrap supreme:
a warm soft flour tortilla filled with seasoned beef warm nacho cheese sauce, a crunchy tostada shell, cool sour cream, lettuce and tomatoes and the wrapped up and grilled for maximum portability.

when did "maximum portability" become acceptable words to describe food?
maybe i've been watching too much tv, but that shit is just WRONG. can i get an amen?

Saturday, July 15, 2006

kick off your sunday shoes

something guaranteed to make you smile even after you have to start your job search all over again: seeing footloose the musical performed by a bunch of 12-14 year olds. my friend's roomate runs a summer kids theater company and this was their production. i was quite impressed with their production. i mean, they are young enough to even have missed when the 80s was retro cool.

update: when i got home that night, what was on tv? that's right, footloose the movie. best day ever.

Thursday, July 13, 2006


i like to think that i'm not ruled by money. but when i sat down to calculate my budget with the offered salary, it became very apparent that it was not very wise financially to take this job. i kept thinking about it and tinkering with different scenarios, and it just wasn't coming up any way that made me feel better. and i had to turn it down.
now all that is left is for me to sit here and second guess myself.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006


negotiations still in process. this ordinary life stuff is kind of hard.

however, i have rekindled my addiction to tetris.

Monday, July 10, 2006

in process...

well, it looks like i'm going to be a michigander. okay, i can't believe i just typed that. my head is spinning. i know that all five of you that read this blog have been waiting in anticipation of the verdict.

the visit went well, and i enjoyed the city of grand rapids. it has midwestern charm. not that i actually know what that is. i experienced more hospitality and explored the town a bit, and had a cheddar dog at yesterdog. (picture forthcoming, nate and dave)

the company itself is small, family run and independent. which has its advantages and disadvantages. but overall, i was excited about the job.

i am in salary negotiations. what the heck? i don't really know what i'm doing. other than make them make the first offer. so i guess once that's all straightened out (if anyone has any advice about this stuff that would be great. i've ben looking up cost of living stuff and all that and it only makes a little bit of sense to me. say, lower cost of living there = lower salary. i'm trying to understand if i can live off the salary i will most likely be offered. this stuff really makes me feel nauseated.)

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

here i go again

july 4th was overstimulating. i haven't seen such fervor, well, since the last 4th of july i was in america. besides that, i had a good time catching up with more old friends. we drove to santa cruz, one of my favorite places on earth. ponderosa lodge is full of wonderful and crazy memories. going there makes me take a deep breath and relax. it was needed.

i'm going to michigan tomorrow. MICHIGAN! TOMORROW! insane. job interview craziness. the rest of my life appears to be happening, a lot faster than i like.

Monday, July 03, 2006

waiting to exhale

i have been home for approximately 5 days. in that time i have managed to

go to an a's game. they lost to the diamondbacks. the diamondbacks, people! atrocious.

go to a wedding in napa. beautiful. fun. lots of old fun friends to catch up with. lots of parents of friends that i haven't seen since high school, who after giving me the parental 3rd degree about my life, then proceed to get sloshed and freaky on the dance floor. now, that's just weird.

get into a disagreement with my dad. this is par for the course. hopefully i will learn not to react with my teenager reflexes. "i hate you and i wish i'd never bee born!" well, i didn't really say that, but it was in the same spirit. sigh.

eat mexican food twice in one day. i know you're jealous. so so so so good.

i am still quite overwhelmed and wondering how to find a quiet and refreshing moment in the midst of all this. tomorrow is the 4th of july and i don't know how i will handle the uber patriotism. especially coming from understated canada. oh canada, how i miss your general apathy. last night i went to church and the first thing i saw was the welcoming power point slide with the american flag on it. yikes. and, after attending an anglican church off and on for the past few months, the electrically powered worship band was a bit much. i feel like rip van winkle, unfrozen caveman, or a reawakened coma patient, take your pick. so many buildings, and cars, hey look, the mall!! the mall simultaneously lures me to buy things and my skin crawl at the same time. holding to my principles becomes a bit unrealistic. for example, i have to find health care. dare i sell out to the man and get a job at starbucks the corporate giant simply because they include benefits? how am i to survive? it seems wrong to me that health care should be beyond what people can afford. canada, i miss your socialist ideals and multi-colored currency. i want to scream when i see how much people are throwing away here, and feel powerless to stop them.

right, so i have a bit of culture shock. i am prepared for more. tomorrow i shall catch up with an old camp friend and go to said camp. conservative evangelicalism ... i will probably be holding my tongue on more than one occasion. on thursday i shall be going to grand rapids, MICHIGAN to see about a job. big doings going on. currently still undecided about this whole business.

people that have been emailing me: i will personally email you soon. my brain hurts.