Friday, May 29, 2009

time has lost all meaning

been trying to get back into a routine since my northern travels and church conference gallivanting. my sleep rhythm is all whacked out for some reason and i've been a bit at loose ends. staying up late, getting up late, sometimes getting up too early, then falling asleep in the early evening, that kind of thing. kind of puts me in a hazy state of mind. so perhaps i should stop blogging right now and go to bed. meh...

summer approaches. at least it is more fun to be outside. could use some boundaries on my time, though the fluid schedule is something to which i have become very accustomed.

more tomorrow... at a more reasonable hour.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

role model

a while back, i was asked to serve on a scholarship selection committee. as i read the applications, i was worried that we would end up supporting whichever kid had the most shiny application, so we'd be guaranteed a feel-good story later on, instead of supporting the kid who might need that extra push to get him or her through. i guess my heart naturally goes to the underdog. i was pleasantly surprised during our meeting to find everyone else was on the same page as me. i don't know why i make these assumptions in the first place. i feel good about the kids that we picked to interview before the final selection.

during the meeting, the committee assigned me the task of looking over the applications again, and coming up with the personalized question for each interview. disappointingly, they already ruled out:
how many knives do you have in your collection?
can you score me some drugs?
how much would you pay me for these drugs?

... i'll make do, i suppose.
(if i could, i would have writting those last few sentences in the universally accepted font used for sarcasm. i'd just like to make that clear for those that can't tell when i'm doing so.)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009


this is chris andersen, also known as the birdman. he's a fan favorite for the denver nuggets, who are on a great run in the playoffs right now.this is a video segment about the birdman. it played last night during halftime of game 4 of the lakers-nuggets series. it's all inspirational and such. the dude really turned himself around, overcoming adversity/drugs/ your basic inspirational kind of story.
at the 1:14 mark, you may have noticed this picture depicting the birdman's downward spiral.
that's my brother off on the left there. sadly, that is not actually the birdman with my brother - just one of his buddies that is tall and white, naturally the perfect person to dub the birdman. i find it quite amazing and hilarious that my brother and his friends made it onto tv this way. someone at espn was way too lazy to see a) this is clearly not chris andersen and b) if they read the tags on the photo, they'd have seen it was clearly a joke. however, if you google chris andersen birdman shenanigans, this is the first photo to come up. which is just weird enough for it to probably be exactly what happened. in any case, it made my night.

Monday, May 25, 2009

head like a hole, black as your soul

hey blogland.

i spent the weekend with my church in santa cruz for our annual church conference. i appreciate that they call it a conference as opposed to a retreat. it's really fun and one of my favorite events of the year - but restful it ain't.

a short list of highlights:
playing knockout in the gym
eating a lot of good food
hearing good words from our speaker, craig barnes
going to the boardwalk and riding the giant dipper - one of those ol' fashioned wooden roller coasters
taking a hilarious picture on the giant dipper
eating a freshly made churro
playing mini golf and winning a free game by getting a hole in one on the 18th hole

unfortunately, i lost the game of mini golf. which isn't such a big deal, but i had made a bet with one of the kids. i led for most of the game too, and fell apart at the end, to lose by 2 strokes. so that night in the dining hall, as a few hundred people enjoyed their meal, i went up on stage, said hi to everyone, and sang "i'm a little teapot." with hand motions of course. yeah. this kind of thing doesn't even faze me anymore. perhaps it is the camp setting that brings out this side of me.

the low of the weekend was the awful awful awful headache that knocked me out of commission on sunday morning. it had been low grade most of saturday, and i tried to be dilligent about being hydrated and also getting my caffeine fix. i managed to down some breakfast and only lasted about 3 minutes into the morning session - when the band started to play and i had to get out of there. i lay on a bench outside and tried to stick it out for the speaker but i soon gave up. i needed drugs. i drove myself down to the drugstore. i was in such a hurry to get back to camp and could barely think straight, other customers had to tell me i dropped my wallet as i staggered out to my car.

i got to the far side of the parking lot in my car before the motion finally put my hurting brain over the edge. i had to pull over and throw up in a corner of the parking lot. god knows what the dudes at the bus stop thought of seeing a car pull over on a sunday morning, the driver throw up out the door without even turning the car off, and then driving away.

i am mostly recovered now. i stayed in the youth dorm, so of course i did not sleep all that much, which was probably a factor. basically, it was the only way i could go to the conference, pauper that i am. quite honestly though, i find these guys these guys to be the most fun.

Friday, May 22, 2009


seen in my favorite bagel shop in vancouver. a) obvious grammatical issues b) in a bagel shop, wouldn't it be safe to assume that there would be cream cheese, making this sign unnecessary?

adventures in babysitting

while in vancouver, i was lucky enough to spend a good bit of time with one ben halton/splinter and one charlie oudshoorn. now, their parents and probably other friends of mine with kids would want to know where they rank on my list of cool kids i know. rest assured friends, that my heart is large enough to hold them all equally. that was probably the cheesiest but sincere sentence that has been written here on this here blog. pardon me while i throw up a little bit.

anyhow, i passed agreeable afternoon with benny while his mom went to work. he only cried a little when she left, and when i let him play with my cell phone, we were bff. at one point, he seemed restless, so i decided to brave the rain and go out for a walk with the stroller. i figured i would be the only fool out in the rain for an aimless walk, and it would be less likely to be embraced by the filipino nanny corps of vancouver (though if it means i'd get to stay in vancouver and my friends don't exploit me too much, i'd consider it).

while my relational skills with kids and babies are pretty good, my knowledge of baby gadgetry fails me. during my time at regent, i was taking hudson to meet his dad there after his class got out. i successfully maneuvered us onto the #4 bus, stroller and backpack and toddler in tow. i was rather pleased with myself, folding the stroller to get on the bus and i even let hudson pull the line to signal our stop. of course, once i got off the bus, though, i could not, for the life of me, get the stroller to unfold. i could find no secret button. to my chagrin, i had to walk the block to school holding hudson's hand and dragging the stupid folded stroller with my other hand. i'm sure we made for an amusing sight.

of course, i had forgotten that fiasco, and i strapped ben into the BOB stroller and threw on the rain fly. of course, i can't figure out where the straps attach to the stroller. i was undeterred and we went out into the drizzle. periodically i would look over the stroller every few minutes to see if inspiration would strike. i was actually glad i didn't run into any other nannies or BOB-owning parents. i was fairly sure mensa would never accept me for membership now (even though a rain fly is basically like wrapping the damn thing in saran wrap and ben would have been fine). especially 2 days later when i went with jane to the grocery store in the rain. as i watched her expertly put it on - i had the fool thing upside down. some au pair i am.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

every picture tells a story

in case you were wondering, this is how exciting it was to see my friends up north.

triple nerd score

so, thanks to facebook, my obsession for scrabble has been revived. i loved playing this game growing up. i also recall getting into vehement arguments with my brother and cousin when we played at one of his favorite college pubs. good times.

many friends share this obsession and thanks go out to jane for tipping me off about this book. can't go wrong with a title like Word Nerd? when i told another friend about the book, she responded, "so it's a story about you?" good burn! anyway, it's "youth" fiction. but when a story is good, it works with any audience. the story itself is great, and the fact that scrabble is an integral part of the story is icing on the cake. (there - you happy now jane? and don't think i haven't forgotten that we left our series tied 2-2. time for another game!)

preferential option?

here's another book from the same used bookstore. somehow i managed to hold off buying this one.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

weird parenting

on my last day in seattle, i accompanied my friend katie to work. after unsuccessfully trying to convince her to take me into her office and tell her colleagues that it was "take your daughter to work" day, i went and hung out in the park to read. this was after i had wandered into the used bookstore and went on the binge i mentioned previously.

while awkwardly tossing a frisbee that almost hit her to an equally awkward man, this mom (who appears to not know him all that well) tells him, "oh we're just at the park for johnny to ride some laps on his bike. it's been a long winter, and he's gained a good bit of weight." WTF? i wasn't so sure i heard her right, until her son rides by and she calls "ok one more lap! real fast this time." the kid puffs past me, and he didn't seem all that overweight to me. again, i must say, WTF? i'm not quite able to do this scene the full justice in how freaking weird this was.

i mean, fine, take your kid to the park to be active. but to announce to near strangers your intentions? about something that could be really sensitive for your son? i wanted to beam her in the nose with her frisbee.

oh em gee

so i'm back in the hot state of california. my travels were quite fun. it did my soul much good to see old friends. more on that later.

i just wanted to share this great book i picked up at a book store... which i then promptly threw on the ground and stomped on. don't worry, it wasn't at the regent bookstore, but a used bookstore chain. i did find an NT wright book and a jim wallis book, in addition to other good books i have found at this chain before. so i find this to be the odd exception, rather than the frightening rule. i didn't even open it, though i am now curious to see how they structured the book. it probably would have made me really angry, so it's just as well.

rather than try to write about the past week and a half in one big post, i will try to break them down into smaller ones, divided according to my whim. that way i'll be more likely to blog. i know you all love it when i do. if you are good little readers, i might even post something later tonight! i probably shouldn't taunt you this way. i'll stop. ... but checking back later wouldn't hurt.

Monday, May 18, 2009

i done a bad thing.

like a moth to a flame, i am drawn to bookstores. i broke my vow not to buy any more books until i finished my current pile of books at home. i've done all right since last summer. but i was on vacation this past week. and i've pretty much pushed the pile of books back to it's original size.

i am weak. and nerdy. come kick sand in my face.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

word nerds

scrabble competition has been fierce here in the vancouver division. evenings pass in companionable silence and concentration, while the dulcet tones of the rachel maddow show streams on the computer in the background. if you a) know what dulcet means, and b) have actually heard rachel maddow then you would find this ironic.

i realized at one point that, while the evening was damn near perfect to me, perhaps others would consider this to be a setting for old people. about 10 seconds after that thought, my friend played the word "penis" on the scrabble board (scoring way more than just the 7 point tile value, because that's how we roll). this elicited a flurry of snickers, thereby demonstrating our maturity level. which is somewhere in the neighborhood of late adolescence. don't think i'd have it any other way.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

back 40

a friend on facebook is on vacation in hawaii. each day there is a new little picture of the places she's been to. i've blocked her for the week. nothing personal. but come on. clearly i will not be doing that here. besides all i've taken pictures of so far are my friends' cute children. and no, my biological clock is not ticking.

in any case, vancouver is as blue as i have seen it in my dreams. wait... that's that pacific ocean at the end of shawshank redemption. vancouver is as green as i remember. and erratically sunny, cloudy, rainy, warm and cold. and the people are as great. and the hockey fans are as disappointed in the canucks' losses.

this was typed on the back porch of my friends apartment, since she was out running errands when i showed up. her neighbors don't seem too perturbed that someone climbed over their railing and is just sitting on the patio. unfortunately there is no bathroom out on the patio. that might perturb the neighbors.

Friday, May 08, 2009

baby baby, i'm taken with the notion

sometimes you see old friends and it's like no time has passed at all. in spite of the fact that time of course has passed, and the evidence of that is a baby. yeah, a whole new person that is small, and cranky much of time, but still charming. it is good to be around people you have a (relatively) long history with, who you know and who know you well, and then to sit around with them on a couch all day talking. holiday so far: two thumbs up.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

all i can do is pour some tea for two

so i'm in vancouver. the change of scenery is quite welcome, even if the rain seems to have followed me from california to canada. whatever - it's vancouver, it's to be expected.

it only took roughly 11 hours from my door in california to the door of my old housemate and his wife and baby son. subway train, plane, bus, cab. who knew that sitting on your ass for so long could make you tired? i always stay up late packing, and ended up sleeping for most of the plane and bus ride. i also had a ipod of newly downloaded podcasts, a couple of books, and the bus even had wireless on it - which kind of blew my mind. i would have blogged on the bus, but staring at the screen for a little while made me feel carsick.

looking forward to seeing people i dearly love. except for maybe dan. even if he is a new dad, he is still a dirty bastard. oh, it's fun to have friends to talk to like this.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

nice day for a white wedding

going to a good friend's wedding tonight. looking forward to celebrating them, seeing old friends, eating good food, and a little bit o dancing. wedding band name: bust a groove. can't lose.

i certainly miss the habit of writing everyday since lent. i think trying to find something to share with friends on the blog keeps me from getting into more melancholy states of mind. of which there have been plenty of late. what can i say? since i turned 30, i think i've spent more time unemployed than employed. that gets your spirits down at some points, no matter who you are.

the other thing that helps my mood is volunteering in the tenderloin. it's break from the "woe is audrey, the universe revolves around me" show in my mind. i have it on tivo anyway. i enjoy the community there.

i suppose the downturn in spirits has something to do with the fact that i am back in my parents' house. dont' get me wrong, i am thankful for a roof over my head and a bed to sleep in. it's just the same old familial patterns and driving distance (albeit it relatively short) from my nascent friend network. on top of the futile job market. stupid job market.