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Note to self: look up "Alien Nation"- I remember this show but I was never able to recall the name.

Ya know,something like a full third of this journal's posts are just reminders to myself about things I like and forgot about. I never do this with things I hate...


In what can only be called a baffling mystery, I have someone to buy presents for on Valentine's Day. That's new.


-I have made the Boy's V-Day gift. Shhhh, it's a secret.

-Written two cover letters today for the Beatitude Society Fellowship. Go me!

-Did laundry. Go me! I smell fantastic!

Now much go and purchase wine to bring to party so that I am not a bad guest.


This is what my desktop is currently looking like.

ScreenshotCollapse )


Feb. 11th, 2010

Deeply sleepy still and posting random rambly thoughts on a variety of topics:

1. Watching TV and reading doesn't work for me. The last few times I have tried it didn't work, and it still doesn't work for me. However, it works pretty fine for researching things online like grants, and that is kind of nice.

2. I hate throwing up in the morning- I have issues with nausea in the mornings most of my life, particularly when I am under a lot of stress. Add antibiotics that tend to upset my stomach, and that leads to this morning: trying to hold down a breakfast burrito made by my awesome boy, only to have it come back to visit me half an hour later- not sexy. I have a really excellent boy, though, and it was all handled with a minimum of fuss. Now I'm pale and hungry and trying to do some reading before work.

3. Tuesday, I went to my first Beatitude Society meeting- it was a highly information presentation on the structure of the Chicago political system. A lot of it went over my head- the person delivering it was a Masters of Public Policy, so he was just a lot more fluent with the whole situation than we are.

4. HOLY WOW BY SCHEDULE EXPLODED. Tuesday I had like four meetings, which is kind of a lot for me. I just feel like I'm doing a lot of running around. It's just a lot.
Snow if falling outside, and it is beautiful.

I, on the other hand, am inside and making soup for dinner

My mother calls and it makes me panicked for the rest of the day when she does not leave a message or answer her damned phone.

I am virtuous, and I work, and I will soon have dinner and then read things and go to the Beatitudes Society meeting, and then read more and then sleep.

I am a hamster in a wheel. Mmmm. Wheel.

In which Beanie is a busy little bee

I've noticed lately a tendency for my posts here to get into the realm of Listy McListern, king of long lines of things to do. Which kind of sucks for you, my dear reader, but it's kind of what I'm able to allow myself at the moment without going into one of those really long tangents that take me away from my homework for too long. It gets lonely without me, you see.

-I have rediscovered xJournal, my lj client of choice. It's weird how you get attached to certain programs- With the new computer I find myself having to hunt down a lot of the freeware that made my old computer so comfy to use. This introduced a period of experimentation, in which I decided, in short order, that neither Phoenix nor iJournal are quite what I want, and that my tastes are rather particular.

-I finished and sent in to my dean an essay and application for a fellowship that I will probably not get, but it's so juicy that I have to try. The essay started out incredibly dry and ugly, but it was improved vastly by the help of my editing buddy, who I now owe some really awesome cookies. There is an art to write reflective and religious texts that is totally different than academic work. For one, you can use "I" and you have to tell a story about yourself at least a little. I used to be really good at this, and it while it came back quick, my first draft looked fairly awful compared to what I was able to get to.

-I visited the church of that woman pastor that I mentioned last time. It was small and cute, compared to what I've been seeing the last few months at SP-R. I did notice something that I'd forgotten I liked- my current church does a lot of experimenting with the liturgy. I hadn't realized how much I liked that until I left. The commute is also fairly awful. I am still going to go back at least once more, and the commute this time would be a lot easier since I know where I'm going, but it is more of a factor than I had initially considered.

-I finally got to the doctor, and her reasons for having to cancel put on a stress level a few orders of magnitude above my reason for stress. So, I went, and I have gotten a short course of antibiotics as my reward, and I shall be fine in a few days. In the meantime, the stress is making my stomach upset and embarrassingly gassy.

-I am reading Tillich and he makes a great deal of sense.

-I want a hug.
Things that have happened today:

11- meeting with the coordinator of the field eduation program- this is the program by which M.Div’s go out into the world, find a parish, and work there as a intern. I like my present parish, but in some ways it’s not ideal- the pastor is new, and I would kind of like to have a female pastor to work under. There’s also the issue of outside ministry- I would like to do something at a church where they were active in the community beyond the parish. All churches do this, but some make it a real active part of who they are.
This meeting unexpectedly lasted an hour, and gave me lots of information about churches to go and talk to. It revealed that one female pastor whose name sounded familiar to me, was in fact someone I had seen speak at a church in my MA. Her church sounds really interesting and active in her community, they have a really good Latino outreach program to the area, so she would be a great resource for me, but the church is still an hour and fifteen minutes away on a good day. That’s a lot of time. The dean of Saint James Cathedral is also kind of an interesting figure to me, so that would be someone to look at.

I met with a professor, who was terribly late coming from another meeting, about using his class for a kind of constructive theological paper- instead of just research, the paper is supposed to end by looking at your own view of something in that theologian’s work and then criticizing and suggesting another reading of it.

(This whole academic program has made understand that reading really is an active process of interpretation- there are books out there that are just readings of one writer putting them in context with another writer- it all seems totally derivative, but it’s really astonishingly creative.)

1.30-2.50- Class with the same professor as above. He’s a total sweetie- we are reading Tillich, and I am behind, but it’s kind of okay because we still have several days left and I had that presentation yesterday that left me kind of unable to get anything done.

6pm- The MA banquet- this was a lovely meal that I ate and said goodbye to my last days of being an MA. Life is good. The boy was there so that I could snuggle when I wanted and had an excuse to discipline myself to go and do work rather than go to the pub afterwards like I would have let myself do.


Chunari Chunari

Ganked from Bald_stoic

Sweet Christ, how long has it been since I posted a music meme?

1. Put iTunes/Windows Media Player/whatever on shuffle.
2. For each question, press the next button to get your answer.
3. Write that song title down no matter how silly it sounds.
1. If someone says, Collapse )

Now press the next button one more time and use that song title as the title to your post.


Good girlfriend! have a cookie!

I got The Boy a replacement teapot. It is much cuter than either of his previous teapots. May it live long and boil well.

Lori Gottlieb

So, Lori Gottlieb has written a book called MARRY HIM! THE CASE FOR SETTLING FOR MR. GOOD ENOUGH, based off the article here: http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200803/single-marry

For obvious and fairly sound reasons, Ms. Gottlieb has garnered a lot of criticism from Feministing.com, of which I am an avid reader. Most of the criticism boils down to the fact that Ms. Gottlieb's experience as a single woman is not representative of single women, and that it represents a backlash against the higher standards feminism set for women's goals. Excerpts from her books cement in my mind her writing as more representative of her own unhappiness than as a viable goal for other women to follow in romance and marriage. (There's also a case to be made that Ms. Gottlieb fails to adequately separate the two concepts, but having not read her book, I will leave that to your own judgement.)

So, overall, I was prepared to dislike Ms. Gottlieb a great deal, and not having anything positive about her in my brain whatsoever, until she popped up telling anecdotes on THIS AMERICAN LIFE. And that's a bit of a problem for me. Because her story, featured in the episode "Mind Games", is fairly creepy. Ms. Gottlieb wrote a fan letter to a writer based on his picture, in which she claims to have met him in an airport years before. This is a lie, but months later he calls and meets her, claiming to remember having met her at the airport and recollecting parts of a conversation that never happened. When she confesses, freaked out by him, he claims to really remember the first encounter.

Now, on listening to this episode, I was not really paying attention to Ms. Gottlieb's name, but by the end of the story, when this was revealed, I was rather shocked. Based on her writing samples posted on Feministing.com, I had not expected Ms. Gottlieb to be funny at all. I had a brief moment of doubt- did I just assume, because her book is rather depressing, that Ms. Gottlieb had nothing worth listening to?

But on second thought, I keep considering these examples, and I wonder if they are not of a piece. They both seem to indicate a really unhappy woman seeking connection. It renders what was just an oddly funny story into a facet of a weird and creepy desperation. I really had not wanted that as part of the background of this tale, but there it is. It's more than a little sad, really.

In current news:

These are the goings on in my life.

1) I have switched from the Masters of Arts in Divinity (MA) program to the Masters of Divinity (M.Div.). What does this mean? I will spend another year in school, for a total of three. I have to play a little catch-up on getting the requirements for the degree. I will have to do some practical work in a parish. I am okay with really all of this.

2) My doctor has AGAIN called to reschedule the same appointment. This is more than a little obnoxious.

3) I have a ten dollar gift certificate for Starbucks coming to me for using my debit card more. This makes me a happy girl, as it means I get free coffee.

4) My roomie broke our coffee maker's pot, which will cost roughly as a much as the device itself to replace. It was her pot, so I am not really annoyed, but it means I am seeing more of Starbucks these days.

5) The Boy broke his replacement teapot. This is a sad state of affairs.

Southland Tales

In an effort to rid my brian of the weirdness that was this movie, I am now listing quotes:

I'm a pimp. And pimps don't commit suicide.-- REPEATED LINE.

We created a gap in the fourth dimension. And then we shoved monkeys into it.

Cockchuggers II.

No-one rocks the cock like [NAME]. ---REPEATED LINE

Destroy capitalism. Dethrone God. -The motto of the NeoMarxist Collective.

The line "We saw shadows of the morning light/shadows of the evening sun/till the shadows and the light were one" is from Jane's Addiction's song "Three Days", which is featured on the soundtrack of the film.

Here endeth the quotes.

Apparently, this movie is the second part of a story, the first part of which is detaile in a graphic novel I have not read nor seen. And, quite frankly, I'm okay with that.

The iPad

First of all, let's get one thing straight. The name kind of sucks. iPad sounds like a really high tech menstrual product, and if they had had a single woman on the project, they would have caught that pretty early on.

But, let's get to the bottom line: I don't think I want this. Which really is kind of a first for me- most of my life has been defined by a running theme of "Oooh, shiney" and base lust for Apple's newest products. It started with iPod and only grew stronger as the iPod grew smaller and more powerful. The iPod Touch nearly killed me. The iPhone is still a source of drool, even if I would have to work around the rather stupid calling plan. The drive to purchase the shiney new toy has been strong, if curbed strongly by my need to buy food, pay rent, and clothe myself.

I have just watched the Apple video introduction to the iPad (snort) and the wonders of its touch screen, the way you can move it, the LED lighting (okay, that I want, but who doesn't?), and honestly? I don't think I want this.

1. Cumbersome: I like my laptop because I can sit with it on a table or my lap without any special tools and use the computer. I can type, operate the mouse, and still shift my position around- the keyboard provides a stable base for the screen, which can then be tilted for ease of sight. The iPad has no base, and the position that the model in the video assumed to keep the display tilted right looked incredibly uncomfortable. You can't lay it flat on a table easily and still use it without leaning over it. At 1.5 pounds, it's too heavy to hold one-handed for long.

2. Dependent: This thing has no optical, DVD, or BlueRay drive. You need an entire nother computer to use this thing. I ranted about this with the MacBook Air. Lack of a self-sufficient system makes it a big shiney toy, and quite frankly, I would rather a toy that did the same thing and was more portable, like the iPhone. There's a reason the things are designed to fit in a pocket.

Now, on the plus side, this thing is not priced like a laptop, so that means that fairly rich people will be able to play with this sucker without too much ado. It may turn out to be a better creature than I expected, but I am skeptical.

What I really want? Is for the touchscreen technology to work its way into the next generation of the MacBook family. I like touchscreens, but I want a computer that works like a real computer, not just a toy and I'm not willing to pay for both. I'm willing to wait a while.
Today, I had lunch with the other "Young Adults," from church, which is the only group where that phrase does not refer to anyone between 15-20. Because, Hi! At 17, you are not actually anywhere near being an adult in a world where more people go to college supported by their parents, which is what comprises most of my social circle. If you are leaving home and going to work or college on your own dime, then maybe that's a time when you're starting to be an adult, but for most of the people I know, it's an extension of childhood's nurturing space.

Anyhoo, ended up sitting with several other people interested in being ordained and/or going to grad school. It was kind of intriguing, because the only other people I know who were doing this were already in process, in grad school, and most of them were already ordained transitional deacons. Which kind of shows you only one facet of the process. And in any case, I last felt really active in a parish in my first few years of college. I really have not had a lot of good feeling about church since then, and a fair amount of bad feeling from my mom's losing her job. So, it's kind of nice to see it from the perspective of happy people who are interested in their work and want to get something done, and have a good reason to expect that they're going to be able to accomplish something. It's far less depressing than I thought it would be.

Note to Self

ANGIER Pleased to meet you, Mr. Ackerman.
ACKERMAN Likewise, I'm sure. Let's get on,
shall we? Angier smiles.
CUTTER (down to stage) Turn it on, please.
After a moment, the machine SPARKS INTO LIFE. ELECTRIC BOLTS CASCADE from the GLOBE and SPLASH on the stage.
ACKERMAN Very pretty.
Angier smiles at Cutter and head back down the stage. he STEPS himself into the machine and DISAPPEARS.
The machine SPUTTERS out and is silent.
ACKERMAN (CONT'D) That's it, Cutter? He simply
disappears? That's not a trick. He has to come back. There has to be a-
VOICE (O.S.)a Prestige?
Exactly- Ackerman begins to turn around- then STOPS- ANGIER IS STANDING DIRECTLY BEHIND HIM. Ackerman is dumfounded. He looks back down at the stage.
steadies himself;
ANGIER Are you interested in helping us?
(nods) Yes. But you'll have to dress it up a little. Disguise it. Give them enough reason to doubt it.
(quiet, Pardon me.
ACKERMAN (CONT'D) haunted) It's very rare to see...
real magic. since I've seen...

I would very much like to read a story someone wrote about the last time Ackerman saw real magic before Angier.
Here are a list of convictions that Sci Fi and Fantasty have forced upon me by useful tactic of blowing my mind.

1. District 9 - Humans are more likely to put aliens in slums and steal their technology and their children than treat them humanely. Aliens, unless you can prove really, really convlusively that you are superior to us, don't come here. We'll screw you over.

2. The Sparrow- If we discover life on another planet, the Jesuits will be the first humans to make landfall. No need for wrangling, a large budget, and an instinctive desire to explore. “For the greater glory of God” covers just about anything.

3. So You Want to Be a Wizard- The entirety of the universe is described within the pages of a book- it is the operating manual and hard drive for everything that ever way and ever will be.

4. Sandman- Women in groups of three are one of the organizing forces of the universe. Fear them, and under no circumstances piss them off.

5. Harry Potter- When you don’t care about the characters anymore, it’s time to stop reading.

Note to Self

Read Guy Debord's THE SOCIETY OF THE SPECTACLE, and ask how his theories relate to the modern wired world, the concept of an interactive Web 2.0, and in particular its relationship to fan culture and media studies.

And, in another note, I found that program I was looking for. It's called Readability, you can get it here: http://lab.arc90.com/experiments/readability/. I particularly like using this to look at Tvtropes- it adds a particular air of authenticity.

More and more I wonder if I should be doing something in media studies, some days.
I read, several months ago, an article in the Opinion section of Nytimes.com that talked about a website that also functions as a Mozilla add-on. This program allowed you to functionally turn off all the graphics and ads on a webpage and view only the main block of text that you wanted in a rather classy font and text size.

I cannot for the life of me remember the name of the add-on or website that was mentioned. I have just spent about half an hour pawing through Nytimes.com trying to find the article again. I have recently lost all of my bookmarks and history from my computer, so I can't just paw through my old links to try and find it again.

Did anyone else see this? I would love your help, please!
Rewatching the first season of the West Wing- the scene's of Leo's marriage breaking up in FIVE VOTES DOWN is so very heartbreaking, given how tough he is all the time to everyone else. He's so incredibly broken.

The lady is armored,

It is 23 degrees Fahrenheit outside, which makes this the warmest day in the past week. It is also snowing incredibly heavily, which is actually the reason for the rise in temperature. It's incredibly pretty in certain areas of the city today and incredibly slushy and gross in others, which is the nature of snow as well.

I am currently wearing:
-woolen socks
-waterproofed hiking boots
-thick red nylon leggings, footless
-even thicker black knitted leggings, footless
-an adorable cotton skirt of two layers
-a sleeveless shirt
-a thin purple sweater

Last night I watched MULHOLLAND DR at Doc Films, which was incredibly strange. I kind of expected that, but honestly, it was really beyond my expectations of weirdness. I'm fairly convinced that a great deal of the film was a dream sequence, but beyond that I can only take away the fact that Naomi Watts is an excellent actress. The whole film could be more comprehensible if maybe two scenes were added explaining what the hell was going on, but there was some really incredible moments of tension and suspense, and I think that it was worth five bucks for the cultural experience.
designed and directed by his red right hand.

In doing bills, my red pen started to leak all over things, making it rather difficult to finish things off.

Having gotten my loans under control again, I am feeling much better about my life in general, and have established a functional budget for the rest of this academic year.

I have only just now realized how tense being back here makes me, but I am making a point of letting myself take time and relax through things. I have my first class tomorrow, and I'm feeling pretty good about it.

EDIT: I wrote this several days ago and it never got posted. I'm backdating it for this reason.

Jan. 3rd, 2010

Back in the Windy City once more. I am only now getting up, having given myself yesterday and the best part of today to get my strength back.

Anyhoo, things to do:

-get mail
-get food
-pay rent (now, you don't have to worry about the check bouncing)
-reregister for the regenstein locker (this is a bit time sensitive)
-get syllabi for classes if possible- start ordering books online asap
-check registration for the orthodox aesthetics
-look over your budget again and make sure that you are keeping things inside budget
-look for internships and summer work


In a horrifying twist, Logan Airport no longer seems to offer free wireless internet. It certainly did the last time I flew, this summer.

This begs the question, of course- how are you online, then? There is temporary free wireless, sponsored by some company who will not garner the free press that mentioning them here would give them, and this is really, really quite annoying. I thought Logan was one of the last free wireless airport holdouts, but it appears to have gone over to the dark side.

So, as you might have guessed, I am headed back to the Windy City and the new quarter before me. Huzzah!

In another move of cunning, my overpacked bag weighed exactly 50 pounds, the limit for bags without having to pay an additional overweight charge.

Random thought- wouldn't it be better for the airlines to stop charging for baggage, and thus encourage more people to check luggage and thus make it easier to get things through the security check? I wonder if there would be some federal money for this....

Welcome to the future

How did I spend the last day of 2009?

I slept in, got some of the torpid stench of the airport off my skin, made a breakfast of whatever random food was left in the house from before we left on vacation to South Carolina, and then looked up the library's hours for the next few days. It turned out, they were indeed open today, but closing early and not going to be open tomorrow, so I trundled off through the falling snow to the library and dumped all my books off. Sadly, most of them are unread, but I did get to the conclusion of Henry Jenkin's Convergence Culture .

I set my laundry to going, and headed out.

Despite my best efforts to be careful, the snow was of that determined sticky variety that clings to itself, the ground, your clothes, and even ice, making the going perilous and my knee bloody before I made it to the library. Adding insult to injury, I landed on it several times on the way back to my house.

On the plus side, however, my newly acquired and brimmed hat worked wonderfully to keep the falling snow off my glasses, and that makes me a happy girl. Cold, wet, and bloody by the time I got to the library, but happy. The mitten/fingerless gloves also worked well beyond expectations, and were quite snazzy.

It's been 2010 for about twenty minutes now, and I have called My Boy (TM) to gloat at him about the face that I am now in THE FUTURE, while he is in the past. He attempted to convince me that time was an illusion, but I know that's just an argument people have made in THE PAST, and told him so.

I resolve nothing, as I am really not inclined to keep these kind of promises made to myself at arbitrary intervals. But, I will note, that I start this year where I want to be in every sense but the absolutely physical, and with firm intentions of getting back to that soon as a well, too. Much in the world is wrong and bad, but it will be alright, someday.

Dec. 27th, 2009

Arrived safely in a resort hotel that is far in excess of what I was hoping for from my rather frugal mother.

Rather fuzzy round the edges because of alcohol intake and the wonderfulness of my siblings.

Inexcusable, but I will be posting lyrics now, as I have just watched for the first time a non-stoppy rendition of Lim's Firefly fanvid, "While We Have the Sun", which is beautiful and a little hurty on your soul if you are in the right mood for having your soul made a little hurty. Which I am, being boozy and several hundred miles from my boy.

Sweet Christ on a cracker, I am pathetic.

While We Have the SunCollapse )

On the Road again....

Queue the Willy Nelson, ne?

The family is off to the supposedly warmer climes of South Carolina, and that means I am up and ready bright and early to get my little buns out the door.

I'm actually kind of pleased that our original plans to fly on Christmas got stymied- the tradition of my family is to unwrap and enjoy presents at a leisurely pace, and having to curtail that and get ready to fly out fast seemed like it would really have ruined the mood.

We got my father an iPod Touch under the impression that, since he is a bit of a hacker, he would be able to make the necessary machinations with his Linux box to get iTunes up and running, but after several hours yesterday that seems to have been put aside. I feel bad about that: I thought it would just be a matter of installing something extra to get iTunes to run on Ubuntu, but it seems that we may have gotten my father a particularly nice and shiny rock for Christmas.

On Christmas traditions:
Christmas Eve: Lasagna. It must be Lasagna. This is because my father was almost half Italian. And I do not mean that he's 7/8's Italian- I mean he's totally Irish and it was a very near miss on being Italian.
After the feast, one present- not one of the big/good ones, but a small one. (Brother boy usually handles the doling out of presents around the circle, and his anxiety about making sure that we like out gifts usually means that he hands out his presents first. We try to limit that a little- what's the fun if he doesn't have to squirm like the rest of us?)

Christmas morn- The kids are usually too lazy to move in the morning for presents or not, but since we were once small and spritely, the rule was long ago established that you can unload your stocking before the others get up, but you can't open any presents. This worked pretty well if you discount the year that I got my stocking at 4 am, demolished it, and then moved on to my sister's.

Brother acts as the gift-monkey and hands presents out to everyone in a round, and then one person opens them at a time while the others coo. There is very little open animosity- if you don't like a present, you generally approach the person later and get a receipt to exchange it. For the most part in these later years, people have gotten pretty good at figuring out what other people want in terms of presents, so there are very few moments of real unhappiness anymore.

And I could probably go on, but I have no yet gotten any coffee in my belly.

The Loot

MacBook Pro 13 laptop: name, A Young Lady's Illustrated Primer
various and sundry undergarments
a small book on the stupid things people say
Coraline, the film
Sweeney Todd, with Johnny Depp
wondrous and wooley socks
various and sundry delicious candies
a handmade casserole dish, made by my dear sister

Name of the Laptop- I'm torn between calling it the Young Lady's Illustrated Primer, and calling it just Nell, for the main heroine of that same little book.

The little puter has been christened "the Primer" and all goes according to plan.

Merry Christmas, motherfuckers!

Testing, testing...

New laptop, makes me rather happy. I am currently running like six programs and transferring files from my external harddrive, a feat which would stymie my old 'puter like no other, and yet, New!Puter is fine. Oh, the joys of new gobs of RAM.

I really should think of a name for the new puter, but for the moment, the only thing that comes to mind is "the precious," a la Gollum, and I don't think I want to add a new set of oddities to my current life.

But, then again, he is a verra, verra shiney new puter.

Dec. 18th, 2009

Arrived home safely, and exhausted: what is it about sitting in one place for several hours that it so incredibly tiring?

Traveling places when there is no one looking out for me in the place I'm leaving. Irrational, but it keeps happening. I was texting my dad all the way through the trip to the airport.

me: Waiting for bus. Cold and bored.
Dad: That will make your arrival all the more heartwarming.
me: bah, humbug!

me: yay bus!
Dad: I love your travel updates. :)

me: On blue line. Yay L!

me: (at airport) Second gate change done. Coffee ineffective taken orally. Considering IV drip.
Dad: Try inhaling.

Saying goodbye to My Boy was a little schmoopy and sad- he still is entertaining his parents, so he's sending me updates about stuff.

Loot count so far:
1 (one) new green eyeshadow from Sephora
1 pair (one) leather snow boots
3 pairs (three) black gym socks that pass for dress socks if you don't look too close.
1 (one) repaired, cleaned and fitted bequest ring from my grandmother- it's actually quite lovely.
Leaving in the morning. Home for Christmas.