One: What's Wrong with Academia

So I had a meeting with a prof at 11:00am. I'm a full-time employee elsewhere on campus right now, so I took my 30-minute legally-mandated lunch and ran down to the prof's office. He wasn't there. I waited a few minutes, gave up, and left a note. A little while later, I got a pissy e-mail from him saying he was "disappointed" that I didn't wait longer and that we really have to meet. AHEM: I AM A FULL-TIME EMPLOYEE ELSEWHERE AND I HAD TO WASTE MY LUNCH BREAK JUST TRYING TO MEET WITH HIM.

I'm not going to waste my breath on this one. One thing that's wrong with academia is this: spoiled, immature people who are used to getting their way casting about recriminations. Usually I'm very good at avoiding this kind of thing, but this time my luck ran out.

Edit: I have conceived a plan most cunning: Knowing what I know about said prof, I think it likely that if I were to put something shiny on the ground in a spot he would be likely to see it (outside the Cowell coffee shop or, possibly, in front of his office....LATE), he would become distracted and forget the whole thing. Tweak suggested a shiny new penny.


Denim vs. Slipknot

In our quest to watch all the great shows people have been raving about years after everyone else was finished watching them, B and I started watching Freaks and Geeks last night. And it's as awesome as everyone said. And it got me to thinking:

Freaks and Geeks is set at a high school in 1980 and a big part of the plot is, appropriately, the freaks at the high school. Freaks in this context were the rocker kids, the denim-clad smokers-in-the-bathroom who cut class and worshipped Sabbath and Zeppelin. Watching the show immediately brought to mind all of the kids who have continued wearing denim, cutting class, and worshipping Sabbath and Zeppelin since then. A few years after I graduated, my high school even managed to spawn a band that spent (and apparently continues to spend) all of their time desperately trying to pretend that they live in 1980, smoke under the bleachers, and cut class. It's like 20+ years of music history never happened.

The thing is, the real freaks are the Slipknot / Korn / ICP/ etc. fans. The big pants, the death metal / goth makeup, the white drugs, mesa-boogie stacks instead of cheap peaveys, and so on. I hate all that crap, but that just proves I'm old: where I feel nostalgic about high school punk rock, the kids who are the actual analogues of the culture I still identify with are into different shit. Different shit that came into being, as it should have, after I graduated.*

Anyway, in better news, I'm actually doing something this weekend (it's my baby's 30th!), so I'll have pictures for my next post. That means less words, kids, so everyone wins.

* Punk rock is still way cooler than nu-metal, generational disputes aside.


Not A Sports School

B and I had a handful of faculty benefactors who watched over us at UO. Two of the most important were a wife-and-husband team of English dept. medievalists (technically, one is in the Honors College) who wrote us letters, served on our thesis committees, and provided much-needed moral and emotional support.

The husband half, Jim Earl, has carried on a lengthy and semi-succesful campaign to reform the relationship between athletics and academics at UO; the long and the short of it is that he has argued (passionately and eloquently) that the emphasis of sports over academics utterly compromises the entire purpose of higher education. His latest on the issue was published last week in a local Eugene paper and is available here (it's a short, brilliant read.)

The article reminded me of one of my favorite things about UCSC: it's not a sports school. Those of you who never went to a sports school probably haven't given the matter much thought. Those of us who have remember the endless seas of white baseball hats, the slack-jawed, blank-eyed "students" who just go to college so that they can go to football games, the whole MTV culture of beer bongs and date rapes overpowering the attempts of bien pensant profs and grads who try to teach despite everything.

That's why the athletics initiative on campus last year made me wary. I was horrified to learn that the full-time employees at the athletics center (again, this is in SC) don't make enough to live on, so I voted for more money for the center / them. But the language of all the student bills ("more money for sports!" "let's be a contender in intercollegiate athletics!" etc. etc. etc.) betrayed a complete lack of perspective. This is a major research university with reasonably high admissions standards. Anyone who got in here could have got in at a Pac-10 school. If their priorities revolve around athletics, they should have gone to a sports school, not a school whose mascot is the FIGHTING BANANA SLUG, for fuck's sake!

Let's be clear: I'm not anti-sports; like Jim Earl, it's true that I'm totally indifferent to sports-as-sports, but my real concern is college sports. Put simply, the more seriously a given university takes its athletics, the less seriously it takes its academics. It's a crude formula and I'm sure the presidents of every sports school in America would angrily thump their fists on tables and toss platitudes around about how the two can work together in beautiful harmony and a shared interest in the life of the body and the life of the mind creates a well-rounded individual and blah blah blah. Those platitudes are bloody lies, at least in the university context. I have already experienced what a relief it is to go somewhere that, at least for now, continues to pursue academic excellence and relegate sports to the level of fitness and hobby. I just hope it stays this way.

P.S. A word to my no-doubt-enraged-by-now friends who are real athletes: I'm not taking a cheap shot at any of you. I'm talking about the culture of athletics at big sports schools, not any given individual athlete. I know that a person can be a great scholar and a great athlete, but I also know that most great athletes are the farthest fucking thing from great scholars, and I believe that the mission of a university worthy of the name ought to be the pursuit of knowledge, not the pursuit of touchdowns.


Look! I'm Cultivating a Positive Outlook (today)

First, happy news: the whip-smart, razor-sharp, and bad-ass BF has successfully had a tiny kiddo who will, no doubt, acquire these qualities with time. Like with most of my friends who have spawned offspring, I am forced to pull back my usual skepticism and salute this event. Well done BF + T!

Second, happy news: we didn't have to drive anywhere this weekend! OMFG, you guys, it was TTLYRAD not driving!

Third, happy news: an elite cadre of muscle-bound graduate students (it's true! it's true!) moved Tweak and J to their amazing new pad, probably the only one of its kind in SC (i.e. spacious, equipped with amenities, and while expensive, not ridiculously expensive.) Along with building up more moving karma, I got to drink more free beer and eat more free pizza. Fun!

Fourth, happy news: as alluded to in my last post, my new computer works. I had to buy a new motherboard, which was marked up to SC prices, and I feel really guilty about it, but holy cow...what an awesome machine. And now I can play Civilization IV! (B pointed out that me buying the game I've been lusting after for two years right before the school year starts was probably not the smartest move. As usual, B was right.)

Fifth, I'm launching a new thought experiment. Can I somehow out-zen myself to ignore my idiot thumping neighbors? They aren't going to stop. And their thumping comes from normal household activities (i.e. running into walls head-first at 3:00am), not blasting music or anything, so I don't have much of a leg to stand on complaining to the apartment manager. Thus, the only thing that's going to keep me sane this year is ME. Granted, I have a terrible track record with that (keeping myself sane), but hope springs eternal.


If You Build Your Own Computer

  1. Wait until you're at home and have several uninterrupted hours.
  2. Don't be drunk. On the other hand, coffee is a good idea.
  3. Be very, very careful and very, very gentle.
  4. Don't touch any component more than you need to.
  5. Sometimes spending a little more money on important things like motherboards is worth it.*

* I spent more than a little more. And I feel very guilty. But the damn thing RUNS and it's FAST.


Too Much Talk, Not Enough Poor-Quality Digital Photography

A certain crafty lady has demanded less verbiage and more picture...iage. Thusly, a few shots from the recent camping extravaganza in Humboldt are in order.

L drank all the vodka and then she beat us all up.

This is how we spent pretty much the whole time. Which is totally the point of camping.

Ok: So first of all, the reason this pictures looks screwy is that blogger won't let you rotate pics and it refused to allow this one to be right-side up. Thus, this is a link from flickr, which shrinks things and makes them weird(er) looking. Second, yeah, the point of this picture was supposed to be two non-tough guys trying to look tough and failing, and I think we achieved that, but we also inadvertently ended up with a kind of "so....why don't I have a shirt on" look.

ANYWAY, there are a couple of other ones on my flickr site.

In other news, it's been beautiful, foggy and cool for the last two days in SC. Tomorrow I have nothing to do. And I have yet to find anything better in life than a long, cool weekend day with lots of coffee and nothing on the agenda.



What happens when you "run out of patience"? It's kind of a dumb phrase. Most of the time, there's no recourse. The only thing you can do is try to avoid patience-sapping situations...and good luck with that, sport.

Speaking of, the parts of my new computer showed up last weekend. I happily slapped it all together the other night and promptly ran into the inevitable thing-that-doesn't-work. This time (it's always something w/ PC hardware), the BIOS doesn't recognize the IDE devices. Since the IDE devices in this case are my CD and DVD drives, and since I need those to install little details like the operating system, I'm stuck until I can fix it.

I did all of the predictable stuff: swapping cables, checking jumper settings, trying different connections, to no avail. When I head home tonight, we're on to compu-chicken dance shit. This is the part where the computer guy has no real idea of what's going on, just what's wrong, so he (or she!) shakes some rubber chickens at the machine and unplugs and replugs everything and updates all kinds of totally tertiary software and hopes that something magically fixes it. BIOS update and CMOS reset, here I come...


Fun, Dearly Bought

Camping was great. We laughed, we drank, it was better than Cats. The drive to and (especially) the drive home from camping, however, were the antithesis of great. B and I have decided that we're not driving further than the north bay for 1 year. If we get to do another Oregon trip in that time, I'll choke down my pathological fear and we'll fly. After 8 hours in traffic jams yesterday, B and I were miserable.

My pictures, while poor even by my low, low standards, will still be uploaded in a day or so (in the meantime, E's pictures look great, as always.)

On to a more sobering topic. The word got out over the weekend that a prof found a blog of a grad student and complained to a certain faculty committee. A ripple of panic washed over the tiny e-community of SC-based history bloggers and by this morning everyone was offline. K and I are the only ones left, and I don't know either way if she's going to stay around (correction: Tiny's still here, but she's password-protected now.)

At first, I was really angry. This is our space. These posts are written for friends or friends-of-friends. We use them to vent, we use them to amuse, we use them to take up time while we're supposed to be doing something else. Googling us and holding what we said in the relative anonymity of the internet against us is cheap, it's a dirty trick, it's bad.

But then I thought about it for 45 seconds and realized that I could never win that argument. The internet is not a "relatively anonymous space," it's the most public space that has ever existed in human history. In IT it's well known that the worst kind of "security" is so-called security-through-obscurity, where you just try to make your system kind of hidden rather than actually closing it off from potential threats. The same principle applies to each of our online worlds. I don't have the right to be angry that up until last night googling my name + the city I live promptly brought up my old blog, which would promptly lead you to my current one.

So in the end, I made two decisions: I'm not shutting down KFR, but I will sanitize it and everything else I do on the internet, even more than I do already. Only initials, including for city names. References to academia will be wrapped in layers of obfuscation such that quick-and-easy google searches won't bring them up. I'll delete my Friendster account (I feel kind of bad about that, since I was able to get in touch with people I had lost touch with via Friendster, but it's the one place on the internet where I'm listed with my real name and a link to this blog.) Etc. etc. etc.

I'm still kind of sore about this, but one irked prof is better than a job lost because of an idle blog post. Ultimately, we could all stand to be even more paranoid.


I'd Like To Stop Driving Now

We're going camping. We're going to see some of the original Hope and Expect crew in picturesque Humboldt Redwoods State Park.

Here's the thing: it's a six-hour drive for them and a five-something-hour drive for us. And the Becky and I are so fucking sick of driving at this point. And we can only go for one night because we all have to work. That said, we're determined to rock out the camp food and camp beer. It'll be worth it as soon as we see their shining faces...it's just going to suck getting there and getting back. Stupid really big California.

I've been rocking a nice grouchy mood for the last few days, for the following reasons:
  • I'm back to weights in my work-out routine. They're heavy, dude.
  • On a related note, I've spent two days at work doing almost nothing but moving big, metal furniture.
  • I've reduced my coffee intake. I know, it's heresy. It's just that I found that if I skipped the second thermos-full (keeping my daily intake to one big mug before I leave and one medium thermos at work), my stomach doesn't hurt all the time. I'm sort of crestfallen about it. I feel like Keith Richards would probably feel if he gave up the drugs.*
Anyway, about 2 more hours of work and then I'm off. Good thing I listen to such good music in the car.

* Just kidding. He'd just fall over dead.


Good Omens

(Starting out on our one-day vacation the other weekend, I was delighted to see the auspicious "666." The auto fragrance dispenser was at a gas station in Gilroy. Thanks to my baby for the pics.)


Beaucoup de Pics

I did a great big update to my flickr page. I'm 90% sure I stole some of the pictures I put there (from other people's flickr sites, or in the conventional way: breaking in to their house, stealing their camera, uploading their photos, then sneaking back and returning the camera in such a way that they never even knew...) If you see something I stole and you want me to take it down, drop me a line.

I haven't yet sorted everything out, but when I'm done things will be logically ordered. Like a robot.

Um...a more substantive post to follow, methinks.



Another successful weekend has come and gone. I went to a fun barbecue of my co-workers yesterday (which is to say that my co-workers were present, not that I ate them.)

On an unrelated note, I have two specific areas of obsolescence I was thinking about this morning.

Area 1: Floppy drives. A 3.24 inch floppy disk can hold 1.44MB of data, which is about the size of one medium-resolution digital photo. Floppy disks have been utterly, blitheringly obsolete for about 8 years now. Any computer worth the name can boot to CD, DVD, or USB flash disk, and by all rights the floppy disk should have vanished from the computing scene years ago.


Two things require the continued existence of floppy disks/drives: BIOS updates and SATA drivers. There are utilities to update BIOS versions in Windows sometimes, but they're a little sketchy and a lot of the time they just don't exist; if you want to upgrade your motherboard, you have to download the little utility, install it to a floppy disk, and boot to it. Likewise, Windows is far too stupid to know what to do with SATA-based hard disks* (which are like every single modern hard drive out there) and you have to hit F6 at the start of the installation and feed the machine a floppy with the disk controller drivers.

This, my friends, is totally retarded. This would be like buying a brand new car and having to use one of those old Model-T hand-cranked shafts to start the engine the first time.

Area 2: On a more human level, I was thinking about the feeling of walking past or through a place where you used to work. I've got a little over a month left at this job and then it's just as likely that I'll never have the need to return to Natural Sciences II or Interdisciplinary Sciences, which is almost a little sad since I've had such a good run here. It was always disappointing to me that the last day of a given job was never the huge celebration I wanted it to be; after years of toiling at some horrible hell-hole for crap pay, I wanted there to be fireworks and hi-fives and parades with retired astronauts when I finally earned my freedom. Instead, there was usually a couple of guys going out to lunch.**

I guess my point is that it's kind of tragic that our experiences, particularly in terms of what we do all day to earn a living, become obsolete so quickly. The feelings of ownership and partnership, of being invested in a place, are quickly proven to be completely ephemeral.

My suggestion: give astronauts something productive to do after they retire.

* Naturally, Linux doesn't have this problem.
** At least there was usually beer involved.


(Albeit Temporarily) Back to Rock n' Roll

Just a few quick announcements:
  1. Nick Cave's "new"* band Grinderman is completely fucking awesome. Bad Seeds fans have been waiting for years for an album in the style of The Birthday Party or the early, great Bad Seeds stuff like Let Love In and Henry's Dream. The last several Bad Seeds albums have been mostly piano dirges, which are fine, but not the same thing. Grinderman is totally, totally it, though - it's everything great about early Nick Cave with more sophisticated songwriting.
  2. A while back I posted my doubts about Turbonegro. Well, I have to retract them. Their new album, Retox, is fantastic. There are a few forgettable songs, but overall it's classic Turbo: slick, dirty, evil.
  3. I'm booked for next tattoo. It's about bloody time. I think the last appointment I had was about three years ago to get some stuff touched up and filled in by Dr. Julien. Obviously, I've been way too broke to get any more work done, not to mention the fact that I'm almost out of blank skin on my arms and legs. The new job has afforded me the chance to do something extra-productive on my birthday, however, and I am stoked. I've heard from a few people that Staircase is the best shop in Santa Cruz, so that's where I'm going.
* They aren't really "new," since all of the members are members of the Bad Seeds, and the Bad Seeds are still touring and recording.


Destiny Is A Bad Word

The Becky and I watched the latest H-Pot movie in the theater the other night. It was ok; I like that Sirius Black sports badass wizard prison tats and I enjoyed the big (too-short) fight scene between the gang of good wizards and the gang of bad wizards. I'm not here to ponder the H-Pot phenomenon itself, though. Instead, I'm thinking about it in the context of this massive post-Lord of the Rings glut of fantasy movies.

The only two currently- or soon-to-be- released fantasy films I know the titles of are the critically-panned Stardust (apparently, Robert De Niro plays a drag queen air pirate with a New York accent) and The Golden Compass, which looks kickass. There were previews for a number of other ones before H-Pot hit the screen, however, and it seems pretty clear that fantasy movies starring kids as protagonists are going to be all over the place for the foreseeable future.

The problem is that they all share the hero-kid destiny device: the protagonist is a well-meaning kid who doubts his or her ability to handle big problems but is destined to save the world. For me, this is pretty uninspiring. What makes Lord of the Rings such a revelatory book is that Frodo and Sam were just wimpy hobbits with no special abilities and no special destinies. It was essentially through bad luck that Frodo ended up being the ring-bearer, and it was through a combination of perseverance and better luck that he and Sam actually got it to Mordor. All of these post-LOTR novels and the movies they promptly spawn feature protagonists who were born with something special; they can't help but be at the heart of the most important events of their (made-up) worlds.

For the reader/viewer, this is a let-down. Fantasy is inspiring because of the implied potential of more-or-less ordinary people to do amazing stuff. The original Star Wars movies inspired a generation of kids (my generation) to pretend they were Jedi; it drove us all crazy that Luke was such a whiny little bitch, because we knew that if we had the good fortune to be trained by Yoda, we'd do a much better job paying attention and actually believing in the Force. Like everything else he completely fucked-up, George Lucas ruined the whole Jedi mythos in the later Star Wars films by claiming that one's potential for controlling the Force was based on little microbes in the bloodstream; now being a Jedi was in the blood, not in the motivation or the discipline.

Fortunately, the plot of the His Dark Materials trilogy, of which The Golden Compass is the first book, is much more ambiguous in its treatment of the child-heroine Lyra. Lyra is destined to be special, but she isn't destined to necessarily succeed. Her choices shape the fate of the world, which I think is a much more topical and appropriate approach to fantasy heroics in general than being born to do good. Like everything else I ever write about, it all comes back to existentialism: in the real world, things are ambiguous and things result from choices, not destiny. Thus, fantasy that works with those parameters ends up not only being more satisfying, but it's ultimately more realistic.



So: finances permitting, I'm en route to build a new computer. And it's all about this case. The coolest thing about desktop PCs, circa 94 - 99, was the existence of the actual desktop PC, the kind that sat on your desk and had the monitor stacked on top. You had easy access to your drives and peripherals and didn't have to fiddle around with running cables down to a tower on the floor. This is why (IMHO) the original iMac took off: people liked having everything together in one package.

Thus, the plan is to build a MicroATX (that means: real small) desktop PC from parts. What I'm finding really interesting about pricing the components is that it's so, so much cheaper than I remember. For instance, this is Dell's kind of hi-end home offering right now. And it's 1000 bucks. I'm able to do the following for 400:
  • 320GB SATA hard drive
  • 2 GB RAM
  • 2.6Ghz Athlon Processor
  • 512MB ATI video card
  • Motherboard
  • Case + 400W Power supply + the usual fixins'
(Apples are right off the chart, price-wise. The only thing you can get for less than 1000 is a Mac mini, which are cool, but a lot less powerful than the system I'm building.)

Granted, I already have CD/DVD drives and a monitor, so I'm able to save some money there, but the price difference is still huge.*

The real question is going to be reliability. As PCs have increased their power demands, it's become harder and harder to keep the components cool. I mean...this system is going to have a power supply 150 Watts more powerful than my bass amp! Having all of those electronics crammed together in a MicroATX-small space is bound to stress the cooling abilities of the case + the fans. I've been very fortunate in that my generic-ass cheapo beige box PC has been chugging along for six years; I'll just have to build the new one as carefully as I can and hope for the best...

*Side note: I'm still available for computer builds / repair. I charge beer. A six-pack of Fat Tire will get you a long way.


Why You Hate Your Computer

You hate your computer because it isn't any faster than it was seven years ago. Think about it: around 2000, the average reasonably-fast PC for home use was something like:

  • PII or PIII Processor, maybe 400 - 800MHz
  • 128MB of RAM
  • 10GB Hard drive
  • Video card or onboard video w/ 8 or 16MB of RAM

Present-day computers, the kind you'd buy from Dell or HP for 800-1000 bucks, are now something like:

  • Intel or AMD Processor, 2.4 - 3Ghz
  • 1 - 2GB of RAM
  • 200GB Hard Drive
  • Video card w/ 256 - 512MB of RAM

By my math (always a terrible risk, granted), that means:

  • 5 - 6x faster processors
  • 10 - 15x more RAM
  • 20x more hard drive space
  • at least 16x more memory on the video card

But is your computer actually 5+ times faster? Chances are good it's slightly faster at everything you actually use it for: e-mail, internet, documents, games. There are prettier visual effects and so on, but booting your computer, logging in, and opening the programs you actually use takes about the same amount of time.

IMHO, this is pretty stupid. There was recently a big hoo-ha in the linux kernel development community in which one of the kernel hackers quit (very publicly) because he believed the core kernel team didn't care about the desktop computing experience. I'm less concerned about the specifics of that exchange than I am about the larger point: faster hardware has not translated into (much of) a faster, more seamless computing experience.*

It'll be interesting to see if this trend ever changes. For various reasons, I'm pretty skeptical. It seems clear that most people are willing to buy in to shinier visual effects over substantive improvement (by all accounts, including my own tests at work, Windows Vista is the single ugliest, stupidest example of this phenomenon EVER.)

It looks like the finances are going to line up such that I get to build a new computer from parts in the next month or so, which will be an interesting proof of concept: can a computer running a really bitchin' stripped-down installation of Debian linux actually perform ridiculously fast, or do basically all operating systems just keep heaping on the bloat as hardware gets fast enough to handle it?

(Side note: Apple laptops are still awesome.)

*Although it has allowed stuff like video editing at home, which wasn't possible before.


As Per Usual

Sorry to drone on about this, but here's how the sick went down:

1. Fever, aches, pains, dizzy, tired.
2. All messed-up, day off lying around on the couch.
3. Better-getting!
4. Agh! Terrible blinding headache!
5. Continued headache, less terrible and blinding.
6. Basically back to normal, such as it is.

Weird, right? Looking at symptoms online, either I had a brain tumor or I was sick. I'm feeling pretty much ok now.

We had a fake vacation at Becky's parents' place on Saturday. We got to pretend that we were Dr. + Dr. Zoidberg, homeowners! I think the most profound luxury the richest 1/5 of the world's population can afford isn't all the junk and shiny accoutrements, it's just silence and space. It's funny to think that, but when it comes down to it a few hundred square feet of quiet space is an amazing, amazing article de luxe.

So much to do, so much I haven't done. Being sick has precluded working out. Being lazy and working full-time has precluded reading anything all summer.

Coming up: two posts about computers. This should interest no fewer than 0 people!


White Tennis Shoes

(I'm back to feeling terrible today...I had the worst non-hangover-related headache I've ever had when I woke up and I'm kind of fading in and out this morning. The problem is that I'm a temp, hence I have no sick time, hence I have to go to work. Almost certainly, I felt better yesterday because I took Wednesday off and lay around all day.)

BUT: my present state of health is not today's topic. Today's topic is CAMPUS FASHION. Specifically, professorial fashion; it's delightfully frumpy and weird. Many older profs (in all disciplines!) tend to dress like they're wearing stuff that they found in free boxes back in early 70s. The ladies have dresses and skirt combos that are kind of big rectangles or cubes. The guys have pants that reach for the sky and leave several inches of ankle exposed. I have to restrain myself from handing out hi-fives.

The younger, sort of middle-generation profs seem to try to keep up appearances a bit; the women wear coordinated but hideous outfits (think: purple) and the men usually just wear big, dark-colored suits. Sometimes, miraculously, a prof of either sex ends up putting together an outfit that actually looks really cool, usually in black. But that doesn't matter. Because:


Profs are terrible about white tennis shoes. Black suit? White tennis shoes! Brown dress? White tennis shoes! Sweater-button shirt-jeans? White tennis shoes! Usually, they're the really horrible, puffy kind. When combined with white socks (which they always are), the rare cool professorial outfit ends up being a worse train wreck than the usual fare.

Let's be clear: the only appropriate place to wear big puffy white tennis shoes is the tennis court.

Two important caveats:

First, the youngest generation of profs, those who recently completed their doctorates and are just starting out, are often remarkably snappy dressers. I think they issue white tennis shoes with tenure or something.

Second, this guy breaks all the rules and dresses like a total fucking stud, despite his senior prof status. I'm biased in my assessment; he dresses just like I do. Seriously, we have the same hat.

P.S. I'm really worried now that one of my friends wears white tennis shoes and I'm forgetting and I just totally dissed them. If that happened, I'm really sorry. I'm sure that against all odds YOU pull it off with aplomb!


Sleep Is The Enemy

Thanks for the get-well wishes; I managed to get my temps back to normal by this morning thanks to a long day of lying around drinkin' that Santa Cruz tap water yesterday. I still feel like butt, but a less-big butt. The kind Sir Mixalot would find unacceptably small.

I loaded up on drugs before going to bed last night, then woke up in a few hours covered in sweat with nasty leg cramps. This kind of thing is pretty typical for me. I have a hell of a time falling asleep in the first place, especially with our charming neighbors through the floor running head-first into their walls until 4:00am. When I do fall asleep, I tend to wake up a few hours later feeling uncomfortable and annoyed. As much as I hate getting out of bed in the morning, I'm usually equally relieved that the night is over and I don't have to deal with sleeping for another 15 or 16 hours. I inherited most of this tendency from my mom, who is an even worse insomniac than I am, and the rest I fill in for myself by being a big wound-up ball of neuroses.

So, until they come up with a cure for sleep, I'll keep taking it like a nasty medicine I have to choke down.

(Or, you know, maybe I'll live somewhere quiet some day. Although Becky likes to remind me that with my choice of profession we'll always be living in college towns, so there isn't much hope for that.)

Anyway, I'm stoked to be back to quasi-normal. When I think of something interesting to write about, I'll be sure to put the internet on notice.


Feelin' Like Butt

So I have a temperature of 102 this morning. The last two nights have been full of utterly fucked-up fever dreams (I had this elaborate one yesterday in which my body was a computer and I was arguing that there was no point in upgrading the software since I felt so lousy.) I feel pretty delirious this morning. The mostest lamest thing about this is that I can't go in to work (I worked a half-day yesterday) because I'm not sure if I'm contagious; that's 100 bucks out of our pocket. Doh!

Anyhoo, I'm going to go lie down now. Wish me luck on sending this stupid thing packing.

P.S. I totally have "Hot Blooded" stuck in my head now.