Thursday, July 31, 2008

Are women "naturally" more negative?

I read an article in O Magazine this morning called "Women and the Negativity Receptor." It brought up some interesting information, such as:

"Why is it that some people, the Donald Trumps of the world, seem to believe only the best about themselves, while others--perhaps especially women, perhaps especially young women--seize on the most self-critical thoughts they can come up with? 'It turns out there's an area of your brain that's assigned the task of negative thinking,'" says some brain doctor.

"It's judgmental....It's a barometer of every social interaction you have."

"In women it's actually larger and more influential, as is the brain circuitry for observing emotions in others. 'We've been built to be immediately responsive to the needs of the nonverbal infant. That can be a good thing and a bad thing,'" says the same doctor.

"The hormonal surges in the female brain (the rising tide of estrogen and progesterone) make a woman more sensitive to emotional nuance, such a disapproval or rejection. The way you interpret feedback from other people can depend on where you are in your cycle."

"If you acquire some idea about yourself, that idea will have an impact on your brain circuitry and get built into how you think about yourself. Our human brains love to categorize and label. Then you grow accustomed to that label and often re-create that identity because it feels familiar."

"Up to 70 percent of girls say they would take a pill to lose five pounds; with males, it's maybe 15 percent. And puberty moves young men toward the 'ideal' male body image, strong and muscled, but moves young women away from the 'ideal' female body image, lean with no hips."

"Bad feedback, bad parenting, and bad experiences are much more powerful than good ones" (in memory).

The author of the article referred to herself as a "ruminator": someone who mulls, analyzes, worries about past, present, and future. She says these types are more at risk for taking in negative messages, "building a big file of evidence that you really are a screw-up or that people don't like you." "It's staying with the devil you know."

The good news is, "the brain remakes itself all the time....Every aspect of you is created by the brain revising itself in respond to your interactions with the world," says some other doctor.

However, "it takes a substantial effort over time to drive the brain in a new direction." But "It's not that different from [starting to take exercise classes] to change your physical self."

"We know that we can enhance memory; now, remarkably, it seems that we can improve outlook."

These ideas piggy back on that article Fermi posted about body size. I tend to lean toward more social and societal explanations of why women have these collective thoughts and experiences, but it's also interesting for me to consider that the brain and hormones play a part. I don't necessarily agree with all of these ideas, but I like reading about the way the brain works and universal behavior patterns because it helps me get a grip on my own mental habits (which have historically been like the "ruminator").

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Some people like their jobs?

In the realm of work-life balance there are several classes of opinion ranging from [My job defines me - I love my job - I am a work-a- holic] to [I hate my job and only do this for the paycheck] with all shades of gray in between. I got to thinking about this when skuh posted awhile back and said: "I still am having trouble believing that people can like what they do for a living." Do I like my job? I wondered. Now, I will begin the investigation!

My first Job: Babysitting
(1) This job provides chance to earn tax-free money when you are under 16.
(2) You get a candid glimpse of what someone else's family is like.
(1) Your job security may depend on the whims of children.
(2) It was hard for me to stay awake that late at night.
To sum it up:
Being an awesome babysitter takes lots of energy, hard work, and slight manipulation. Getting paid 5 to 8 dollars an hour seemed great at the time, but I am glad that this is not my job now.

My first "real" job (ages 16-18) Hostess at a medium sized pasta resturant:
Summary (and Pros):
I totally loved this job. Here are the reasons:
(1) Working let me escape from my parents during the thunderous teenage years.
(2) I was "the favorite hostess" mainly because I wasn't an idiot like most of the other hostesses, and I worked hard.
(3) The (college boy) servers were constantly flirting with me.
(4) Working let me have some income that I could spend on important things like diet coke and CDs.
(5) Being a hostess means that there is lots of social interaction with minimal intimacy. Having a set script to tell people while I was seating them was about as much intimacy as I could handle at 16.
(6) I got to color with the children's crayons while I was waiting for people to come into the restaurant.
(1) Sometimes you have to work with really dumb and obnoxious girls that are also hostesses.
(2) Sometimes servers will direct the anger they feel towards their table at you because they lack emotional maturity.

Next job, age 18 into college: Server at various resturants
(1) Waitressing gives social interaction with limited intimacy.
(2) I had an inner desire to wait tables, and this was a realization of my dream.
(1) Your income depends on the mood of the people you wait on.
(2) If the restaurant isn't busy, you might not make any "real" money.
(3) Most other servers are not people that I would choose to be friends with.
Every time Jips and I go out to eat I am thankful that I am not working in a restaurant.
I liked this job while I was there.

College age: Student Worker
This marks the begining of my distaste for Academia.

College age: Farmer's Market Checkout Girl
(1) If the people in line get pissy, you don't have to worry about them leaving you a bad tip.
(2) The girls I worked with were awesome.
(3) The uniform consisted of a t-shirt containing dancing fruit. I still wear them today.
(4) You get to shop for fresh fruit and veggies after work. You know exactly when the fresh strawberries arrive.
(5) You work in fresh air surrounded by fresh produce. This is a beautiful environment.
(1) Working outside in the middle of winter means wearing 3 pairs of pants and 5 layers under your jacket.
I have fond memories of this job. I had a nice retired navy grampa as a boss. I loved the fact that I didn't have to care about moody customers.

Grad School age: Grad school, Teaching Assistant / Research Assistant
(1) Being a TA made me more compassionate.
(2) I am getting paid to go to school. Yes, they pay me enough to live while I focus on my degree.
(3) I split an office containing four desks with just one other female grad student that I like. (That means I get TWO desks!)
(4) I have met some awesome graduate students in my program.
(5) I actually enjoy learning and studying and researching.
(1) The pay is much less than my B.S. degree would allow me to earn in the real world. I earn less than a high school teacher.
(2) Most professors act like rich spoiled 6th graders. These "6th graders" have control over if I get my degree or not. Dealing with this has been difficult.
(3) It is hard to have any sort of relationship with your husband or "friends" when you work constantly.
I like research and playing around in a lab. But once I get out with my degree, I am never coming back.

Currently, I guess I do like what I do for a job on a daily basis. And I have even learned how to manage my boss!

If you didn't yet respond to Skuh's post, do you like your job?

Monday, July 28, 2008

More Subway Art

After going through a dry spell of encountering subway poster d├ętournement, I was happy to stumble upon these two posters late one night at my very own Grand L stop. The second one is making use of an ad for the new season of Heroes and some reality TV show called "Date My Ex" (notice how the "Showtime" logo in the top left corner has been altered to read "Ho time"). The Will within Will poster is pretty creepy. These are pretty well-done in my opinion. I hope whoever is behind these collages keeps it up!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Lemmings - Minesweeper Hybrid

Hurray for Bomber Man '93! This is one of the old Nintendo games that is available for download and play on the Wii. We don't have it, but Honey G and Gayla do and we played it at their place last night. I am not a fan of most video games. But this one is AWESOME!

If you play 4-player you start out with these guys: White Helmet, Black Helmet, Red Helmet, and Blue Helmet. I was Black Helmet, Gayla = White Helmet, Jips = Blue Helmet, and Honey G = Red Helmet. So first you have to drop a bomb and run away so that the blast doesn't kill you. The bomb blast will get rid of the squares with bricks but not the gray blocks. Basically you try not to die. And you bomb bricks to make space so that you can walk around to kill other people with bombs. Sometimes little icons pop up that you can walk on and get like the fire face in the top right by Red Helmet. That fire face makes your bomb-flame bigger.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

you've got to rearrange

Love the pictures, Fermi. And kudos for being in a space of embracing your physical form. I am working towards that same goal myself, one little-bitty step at a time. It helps to see things like your last post. It reminds me to appreciate the progress I've made over the past couple of years and not to fixate on the steps back I've taken over the past few months. I'll get there, I know it. It just won't be overnight and it sure as hell won't be easy. But as long as men be luvvin dem curves, I maybe won't have to go it alone or without support forever.

You also asked me sometime back about how I'm coming with the weight loss struggles and it's occurring to me now that I never got back to you . . . it's hard. But I am doing my best and working on reconnecting to myself. My success in the past with weight loss is due in very large part to marrying my mind and body in the name of loving and caring for all aspects of my Self. I feel like I've strayed some from that path in the last few months, but also feel myself slowly but surely moving back in that direction. It's beginning to get easier to breathe. Thanks for asking.

Last night was my last night at the Noble. Although my heart was ever-so-slightly heavier with sadness, I am mostly excited to be moving on with my life, direction: forward! I've been teaching at Sylvan Learning Center for the past two weeks and am working on finishing up with the Summer semester. I happened to be awarded a small Transfer Scholarship from UL, which was modest in its amount, but a graciously accepted honor, nonetheless. Professionally, things feel like they're falling into place for the first time in my life. And it's nice.
Sylvan has been a little overwhelming since I'm having to learn the ropes, but it feels more like a challenge that I am up to and less like crushing pressure that defeats me before I try. *Deep exhale of relief* I still am having trouble believing that people can like what they do for a living. There are definitely things about it that are work . . . things that I am not in love with, but generally speaking, I can foresee liking going to work at Sylvan every day. What's more I can foresee being really good at this job. The kids can be great. Like this one girl I was working with yesterday declared, "I'm a beast at this!" after feeling confident that she had learned a new reading skill. The same girl this morning, when prompted to generate a sentence using new vocabulary words containing "ou" vowel diagraphs, produced: "I got to bounce."
Bliss! I love that little girl. Were she twenty years older, I'm positive we'd be road dawgs.

OH! I cannot believe I almost forgot to report back about Iowa!! In short -- which I would be glad to explain in further detail if anyone is interested -- it's a no go. Too expensive and not a good fit for me. It's just not what I had in mind. I was fortunate, though, to meet some incredible people and have an unexpectedly wonderful time.
Apologies for the meandering post . . . it's been a while and I am still recovering from celebrating the end of my Barnes and Noble era. Holla.

Imagine Body Image

I felt good about my body this morning, which is probably a result of the following:
a) lack of menstral cramps
b) lack of muscle soreness
c) being well rested with sleep
d) having my muscles rested as I did not exersize yesterday.

This is probably the first time all week that I have felt this positive about my physical self. Previously, I just felt rotten, but that is no longer the case.

The photos are from a UK online magazine. Now, I am aware that not everyone loves nakedness as much as I do, but I do love these photos. Primarily because it is a display of real nakedness without overt sexuality. Secondly because it shows what men want and what women want in terms of the female form. The result: Men like boobs and ass. I think I've heard this one before.

Living with an extroverted man, it is unmistakable that men like boobs. I felt the need to include both photos because in the top one you can clearly see that Anna has HUGE boobs.

This intrigues me because I lack the obsession with boobs that men have. To me, they are just a reproductive organ that I have yet to use. My face and legs and hands and brain are way more important to me. My face allows me to be silently expressive, my legs get me places, and my hands do everything.

I guess that is where evolution comes in. Men like women who have curves because the curves themselves are outward signs of fertility.

Now I mentioned before that this was from a UK magazine. It got me wondering what the national averages were for The United States. The average women's size in the US is a 14, and the men's size is a 44. This is from a quick google search resulting in : Average Clothing Size is WHAT? and Wonderquest.

EDIT: Please read Peacebone's (Peaches') comment in the comments section. Tres importantes!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Back from Tour

Hey guys. I'm finally back from tour and starting to readjust to everyday life. Playing in Europe was amazing. My favorite spots were definitely Berlin, Prague, Paris, and Birmingham. Unfortunately, I didn't have the opportunity to sight see much, but I was able to explore Berlin and see the Eiffel Tower in gay Paris. Above is a pic of Malkmus playing Siren Fest this past Saturday at Coney Island. We flew from Frankfurt to NYC on Friday and arrived at 9pm at JFK airport. We had to be at Coney Island by 10am the next morning to load in our gear for Siren! It was jetlag-heatstroke-crazyshit-city! It was so much fun though. It was the largest crowd we've ever played for and the setting was so killer. The Cyclone was to the right of the stage, and the Wonder Wheel to the left. I actually rode the Cyclone with my band mate later in the day and it wrecked me. At least I rode it before it's gone.

Here's a selection of photos from my flickr:

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

my ass feels like i'm gonna die

make that my ass and back and shoulders.

On Monday, I did a wee bit too much of teh exercise.
Today I took a nap.

Earlier today I felt like quitting graduate school. Not only am I completely disillusioned with Academia, but I also feel that I lack the enthusiasm I once had for my subject. Now, there is a possibility that this disregard for my work stems from my overall state of being sleep deprived and sore. While there exists an equal likelihood that my spiritless state has arisen from the purgatory known as My Graduate Program.

I fantasize about being a stay at home mom. I daydream of having four kids. (In reality, I know we will probably end up with 2.)

Postsecret from Sunday:

I am weary of this stage of my life.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Clint Eastwood is as much a part of our family as my out-law aunt

"Family" as a topic was not always peaking my interest. For young Fermi, life was family with a side of school. And at that time I was interested in relationships. I was afraid of divorce. I needed to know how to have a good relationship and not get divorced. Looking back now, I'm not sure where my divorce obsession came from other than the fact that I found it hard to trust people in general add my interest in relationships and you get divorce, betrayal, and cheating spouses.

Some time later, I am married to an incredible man who is my one, and when I think of the future it is of us with toddlers and then as old grandparents, and I think: He will most probably die first. Fuck.

Now my interest lies in family, specifically of the sort that you do not choose: Mothers, Fathers, Aunts, Uncles, Sisters, Brothers, Cousins, and Grandparents. Families and extended families interest me now because they are so different. Generally I see individual human beings as mostly being the same, but (biological) Families are a situation where there is a small pool of DNA that the individuals share. With this come tendencies, and tendencies can be influenced by environment so that you as an individual are "different" with your family (than with a group of randomly selected people) because their predispositions to certain behaviors tend to highlight and enhance those same inclinations in yourself.


I mention this because tomorrow is the memorial service for my dead grandmother. I am going to see Aunts and Uncles and Cousins that I haven't seen in 8 years. I don't think I saw my (now dead) grandmother in the past eight years either. This side of my family is an anti-social bunch. I type that with a smile because even though I am looking forward to seeing these people, it seems perfectly normal for me to not see them very often.

This is the first time that my husband will be meeting most of them. Surprises are not my favorite things, so I tried to warn him about what it will be like. In this family we call the people who are married to the siblings, "the out-laws." And this is a perfectly accepted and embraced term. Looking back now, I believe the term origin came from the mix of "in-laws" with our usual activity of watching old Clint Eastwood films together. Do you feel lucky, punk?

One of the out-laws doesn't shave her legs, smokes, is a bit overweight, and is somewhat loud and abrasive. I like her alot, but I still cannot get over the fact that she doesn't shave her legs.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Wednesday's Workout

*This post is in response to Tino's post below*

How It Started

I started running in 5th grade. I'm not sure why. Maybe because my parents were always running or walking or roller-blade-ing. I decided to run one mile every day for 100 days. We had a treadmill at our house at the time so that made it easy to do even if it was raining outside. And I did it. At the end of the 100 days I ran a 10K.

In 5th-8th grade, one mile turned into two miles a day, and I think in 8th grade I started running 3 on occasion. My older sister informed me that if I was going to run cross-country in High School, 3 miles would be the norm for a "practice." I upped it to 3.

Let's not even talk about High School. My calves are still fucked up from all of the running I did then. My family joined That Awesome Health Club when I was in HS. That was good for me because I started doing some weights. I attended Body Pump classes which are classes based on choreographed music that you lift weights to in a group with an instructor. The music changes but they all have this format:

Track 1: Warm Up
Track 2: Squats
Track 3: Chest
Track 4: Back
Track 5: Biceps
Track 6: Triceps
Track 7: Lunges
Track 8: Shoulders
Then 15 minutes of ab work.

Do I have the order wrong? It has been so long I don't remember now.
Here are Two Body Pump Links: Tracklist site 1, Tracklist site 2

And Why It Continues
That is basically my entry into exercise. Running was a great release for me. I have always been excellent at channeling my anger. It flowed from my body into my thighs and stayed there until I ran it out. I needed to run. I was addicted to it.

Body Pump was magical. It was a great activity for me because the classes were almost like being sociable, but I didn't have to talk to anyone. I just have my spot and do the routine. The next day my body is sore in new places, and I love it. I feel my muscles and become aware that I have them. Stretching feels sooooo good! Throughout the day I move, stretch, and dance. I cannot wait for the next class.

And that is why I continue to exercise. I do cardio for emotional release. Without cardio I become depressed. I cry, sleep, and stare off into space. My body stops moving.

I do weights for the powerful feeling I get during the workout and for the great feeling of being sore the next day. Weights allow me to celebrate my body. The next day I move slightly and I feel my muscles moving. I stretch and feel like the most stunning of creatures (even though I look just like a normal person stretching.)

Is it worth it? Lemme work it.

Some of Fermi's recent posts have got me thinking about summer workout programs. Well, workout programs in general. For me, summer is a big deal because I have June and July off and there is NO structure at all to my schedule.

I am intrigued about other people's routines, because this is something I've never established for myself, for whatever reason. Call it personality: type B, a "P" for "perceiver" on Myers-Briggs (meaning that plans make me nervous and I like to keep things open, responding to them as they come up).

The biggest reason is that I've never had to establish a workout routine for myself in the past because I was so heavily involved with dance from the time I was seven until the time I was eighteen. I had formal technique classes four times per week for all these years.
At the height of it:
M: 2 hour pointe class
T: 1.5 hour ballet class
W: 2.5 hours, tap and jazz
Th: 1.5 ballet, sometimes hip hop
F, S: sometimes practice for competition pieces or dance review pieces

What I should have done when I was a freshman in college was double-major in dance. That way I would have gotten into the LSU dance world early and made friends and kept a dance routine. I think I thought that LSU didn't have any decent dance to offer me, and I was clueless about how to get information, see a counselor, work the system, so I didn't dance for about a year and a half until I met Ann and started taking class at The Dancer's Workshop. But they are a ballet school, so their modern classes are easy, boring, and under-attended, and there's no jazz or hip hop to speak of.

I have always taken ballet, but I don't consider myself to be a ballerina. I have more of the body of a jazz dancer (I'm somewhat stocky with shorter legs and a big booty). I'm more talented in modern and jazz because I'm good at moving sharp, boogying hard, and being aggressive with jumping/turning. So I miss being able to do these things! I literally haven't been to a great modern or jazz class the entire time I've lived in B.R.

Long story short, I did get involved in LSU dance my last two years there and I ended up performing and choreographing, and it was fantastic. Now I'm working on getting into a modern piece that Dancer's Workshop is doing, and I also want to audition for Of Moving Colors. I'm trying to believe that I can do this on top of teaching duties.

Now for the point: here are some things I've been doing very inconsistently all summer as excercise.
  • routines on this yoga dvd-->
  • walking the 2-mile loop in my neighborhood
  • attending (slow and boring) modern class on Tuesdays
  • riding bikes (about 3 times total) with people
  • walking the big lake (4 mi) about 3 times total
I joined the YMCA yesterday. I paid a bunch of money for a semester-long membership to force myself to go. I felt very worried after I paid--what if I don't show up enough to get my money's worth? What if I should have done the LSU alum discount at the rec instead? I guess I can still do that at the end of the semester if I don't like the Y. But I am excited to have a workout routine for the first time in my life (except for the few times I used to go to the rec with J. and Chelsea back in the day).

What do you guys do to workout? How do you not get endlessly bored when doing a video (they say and do the same things every time!)? What motivates you (besides fears of weight gain)?

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

That one is for you to keep.

I said good-bye to my grandmother today.

Her health has been deteriorating for a few years and today she decided that it is time to let go. She is not going to dialysis anymore. That basically gives her 2 weeks at most to live. Most likely less than that because of her numerous comorbidities. My family is a wreck and I'm 5 hours away and can't be there. I'm certain that I'll be able to get off of rotations to fly down for the funeral, but there's just no way I'm going to be able to be with them for 2 weeks. This really sucks for all of us because I've always been the "strong one".

It doesn't even feel real to me. This is the first grandparent I have lost-- and the one I am closest to. Up until this afternoon, I had barely even cried. I kept answering questions for my family about all of the medical issues they are worried about, and using it as a defense to protect myself from the pain.

She is very weak and confused, so she is saying her good-byes now while she still can. She called me this afternoon and we talked a little bit, just avoiding the inevitable. Then as we were hanging up she said,
"You sound great. Here's a kiss. That one is for you to keep."
"You take one back too. I love you"
"I love you too"

And I finally started crying.

Work Music

I spent my whole day at work in front of one computer or another manipulating my data. This is totally different from most of my days lately that at least involve some wet-chemistry bench work. The good thing is that most of this data manipulation is semi-mindless, (read: an undergrad could do it.) and I got to listen to my Ipod while I was processing my files.

I noted two songs that I hadn't enjoyed before:

"Let the Devil In" by TV on the Radio (Untitled 2006 TVOTR Album)


"Song No. 6 (with Ron Sexsmith)" by Ane Brun off of the album: A Temporary Dive

I don't remember too much about the TVOTR song now, I will have to give it a re-listen, but I remember thinking that Peaches would love Song No. 6. So let me know what you think, Peach-bone.

Monday, July 14, 2008

1 magazine you think will make you happy... but won't

I finally feel like writing, but I am not sure if I have anything to blog about... That means it is time for THE LIST!

8. Magazine Obsession
The Fourth of July marked our one year anniversary with My Coke Rewards. Last year, MCR had better prizes than they do now. Jips would get video games and we could get free Blockbuster movie rentals. But now, they have run out of all of the good prizes. Even the Women's Diet Coke tank top! I ordered one tank top to see how it would fit and I LOVED it. But then when I went back to get more, they were sold out! So Sad.

Just about the only thing that is left to get are free magazine subscriptions. So I started getting those. If we add the free magazine subscriptions to the fact that my sister gave Jips a script to GOLF, Jip's aunt gave me a script to Southern Living, and Jip's mom for an unknown reason gets Rolling Stone so she sends them to me, we now receive the following magazines:

1. Golf
2. Southern Living
3. Rolling Stone
4. Cosmo
5. Fitness
6. Redbook
7. Wired*
8. Self*
9. O, The Oprah Magazine*

Wired, Self, and O haven't come yet, but I have gotten at least one magazine from all of the others.

I got a cosmo mag first. That was a huge disappointment. The first one I got was July 08, with Carrie Underwood on the cover. I had never seen her before in my life. The cover says "7 NEW ways to be happy" so I flipped to page 142. And the title of the article is actually: "7 Things You Think Will Make You Happy...but Won't." I think: I already know what does not make me happy, and I feel like there was some false advertising on the cover. I already feel like I have gotten better *happiness* advice from Penelope Trunk: Having sex more often makes you happier than having more money. This was good news for me as I have a willing husband but not alot of income. Ahem. Let's get back to cosmo, Here is the list with my comments:

1. A Ton of Cash and Luxe Stuff In the small print they tell us we need to appreciate what we have. Yes, but I knew that already. Maybe gold-diggers read cosmo and don't know that. But still if you look at a previous post, I say that I want to be rich. That is because, in our current society, money helps you get out of sticky situations. In many cases having a monumental sum in the bank gives you choices that you wouldn't have otherwise had. For me Money *grants* Freedom, and Freedom tops my list. To clarify, I want to be rich, but I don't want to live rich. I don't want anyone to know of my future money that I will have in the bank.

2. Blowout Celebrations for Major Milestones At the end of this section they tell us that routines make us happy. I am a living example of this one. I did not attend my high school graduation, needless to say I didn't have a graduation party either. Under 30 people witnessed my wedding. That includes the judge and photographer. It was romantic and casual, on our beach. I had a short dress and jips wore shorts. We ate together at a restaurant afterwards. It was great. Routines make us happy. Personally, I need so much structure I don't know if I could survive without my routines.

3. Being Upbeat 24/7 Wait, you mean having a fake bubbly personality (and pretending everything is awesome all the time) isn't actually going to make us happy on the inside? SHOCKING!

4. Reading Cosmo Right, so let's stop even talking about Cosmo.

While I was blogging about (8 Magazine Obsession) I mentioned 14. Penelope Trunk's Writing. Penelope Trunk (links above) seems like a normal person, not terribly educated, not terribly wise, but sometimes she gives good advice. Like this: close friends and family make us happier than being alone. This is true even if you get paid tons of money to be alone. She also says that we have to find out who we are and what we want and then make career choices off of that. It seems obvious, right? But it gets confusing when you get advice from people you respect but that have very different desires in life.

A professor who desires to have a successful academic career, who obviously puts her job first told me that taking off of work to stay home with my kids (for 5 plus) years is a very bad idea. The truth is that it is possible to work with a company and work part time or even full time if you are a mom. But I don't want to do that. It is incredibly hard to be a working mom when your kids are young. And I believe that I can be a better mom if I just focus on my kids.

So why am I getting a PhD in chemistry? Because I want one. Is it a waste for such an educated person to stay at home and take care of kids? Is it a waste for me to clean up poop, and make dinner for my family? No, it isn't. Because even though someone else *could* do the same job that I would do, they won't do it in the same way that I will do it.

The List

6. Black boys catcalls
7. Harlem Shakes Vampire Weekend vs Bonaroo Music Festival
9. Cake Therapy
15. Things that make me happy
16. Feeling happy vs Feeling Powerful vs Feeling Superior
17. Jips comes home
18. Flowers and Presents

penguins in a lavender field? quoi?

do we like the new header thing? I plan to change the background picture every once in a while. If anyone has an awesome background to suggest, you have 3 options: 1. suggest it on the bloggie and I will do it later, 2. design your own bloggie background, 3. keep it as a deep dark secret.

Fermi, I read the article. It accurately describes (pretty much) the relationship/hierarchy that was/is my parents. The only difference is that my mom seems to be completely supportive of the idea that anything she has provided (raising 3 kids, cooking, cleaning up after a pack-rat, taking care of my dad's parents through years of terminal illness, etc) is less important and valid than the financial support my dad has begrudgingly provided. He even has a way of making me feel guilty for spending money that I earned at my own job. (Yes, I'm aware that no one can make you feel any way, but I still think they can a little bit, especially your family) That's not to say my mom is some kind of saint. She's controlling and manipulative in a highly disarming way. At least for me it's disarming, but that may have more to do with the fact that I was reared in the environment. Something tells me this is more of a topic for a personal blog.

I think Skuh would have a nice contribution to that article as well.

I'm beginning the month-long move in 2.5 weeks. Eek.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

No sin in concession.

I found a blog today: Is there no sin in it?
that has this post:
A concession that is not a concession.

It starts out with women shaming women into wearing fashionable clothes and getting expensive haircuts. And then slides into how lonely some old sexist men are.

If you have a chance to read it, what do you think of it?

happy birthday, America

I love America, and it seems that the fourth of July makes women want to bake. It is the summer and berries are everywhere so most people make some whipped cream and blue-berry-strawberry cake thing. Not me. Finally I am posting a photo of the disaster of the red velvet cupcakes.

I had such high hopes for these little guys. But the blue is baby-blue, not royal blue, and red-velvet cake is foul. If I were to do this again, no, I won't do this again.

I felt very unmotivated Saturday. I bet there is a correlation with very hard work during the week and total lack of motivation on Saturday. I did get one thing done! I got booton a gift card to bed bath and a nice wedding card. So I will send that off soon. Etiquette sites say that you should not give people gift cards for wedding presents. This is rubbish if you ask me. Once people start having registries, gift cards are okay, because basically they are picking their own stuff out anyway. Gift cards just allow them to get specifically the exact thing they wanted most off of their registry but have not yet received.

We saw Wall-E on Friday night. It was okay. More of a romantic-drama than a romantic comedy. I prefer my romances comedic. How could the fat people make babies if they weren't used to touching each other, that's what I want to know!

I don't want to go back to work tomorrow. At least it is another 4 day week for me, because Jips and I are going to my dead grandmother's memorial service on Friday. I am looking forward to the little vacation.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Amazon, get your shit together and send me my DVDs!

I purchased this DVD tonight from Best Buy. And I had to try it out immediately. Last Saturday I ordered 4 DVDs from Amazon and they still haven't arrived! Sure, I picked *super saver shipping* but usually I still get my goods in two days.

Workout DVDs are an interesting genre: Jane Fonda, Richard Simmons, Tae Bo. Yeah, remember Tae Bo? We used to do that in High School P.E.

So I did this DVD. The 40 minutes flew by, which was good. I think in the future I will skip the flail your arms and legs in a hard to follow pattern (warm up) section. I need these DVDs now because I don't have the flexibility in my schedule to attend workout classes, and it has been long enough past my last body pump class (6 years) where I have lost all motivation doing those workouts on my own. If I manage to pick up weights, I talk myself out of it after five minutes.

This way, when I have a video, I can do the fucking video whether I like it or not. I can write down on my calendar that I did "the video" and that will mean something more concrete than an attempt at weights. This will be good I think. The video itself is pretty basic, but basic moves are way better than the nothing I was doing previously.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

that lysergic bliss

After spending about 4 days at my parents' house for the 4th of July weekend, I was starved for some interwebs when I got home Sunday. I meant to blog at some point in time, but now's a good a time as any right?

This is the most-emailed article on the New York Times right now. It's called "An Ideal Husband." It's about one of my favorite things to discuss, male-female relationships; but more specifically, how to pick a mate. The one thing that bothers me is the nagging sensation is that the reason it is #1 most-emailed article is that tons of women are emailing other women friends saying "this is it, a key to our dismal dating dowager lives!"

Just in case you don't feel like reading that short, entertaining article, I'll outline the guidelines and maybe make a comment about them if I see fit.

1. Does he have friends? Are they cool? (meaning decent people rather than hipsters who shop exclusively at urban outfitters . . . or some other kind of strange definition of "cool")

2. Is he responsible with money? dolla dolla bill, y'all.

3. Is he a doormat? My doormat is soaking wet at the moment because I'm cleaning my house and I set it outside to be in the sun. Unfortunately, I seem to have forgotten that it's monsoon season in Louisiana and it rains every afternoon. Just fyi.

4. How is his relationship with mama? Is he overly attached? run and don't look back. Aaaaand another lovely google image find.

5. Does he have a good sense of humor? Does this even need comment?

6. What is his family like? I've been chilling with the 40 (now 41) year old's nephew and it's given me a LOT of insight into the 40 year old's behavior. And I thought I was the black sheep.

7. Is he a good human being? crazy = not so good.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Summer of Blog

I haven't written since Tuesday.
I tend to not write when things are going shitty.

(skipping the shitty parts for now or perhaps forever)

We rented Bucket List because my mom told me it was great. I bet she loved it because she is an oncology nurse. Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman were funny together, but the whole film seemed external. They go on these adventures and die, and they are supposed to change on the inside, but I guess I didn't buy the change. One truth of the film is that people need some time for themselves where they don't have to give of themselves, where they can just be.

I made a red velvet cake. This was my first experience with red velvet and probably will be my last. It is not delicious without cream cheese frosting.

Booton got married this weekend. I am waiting for A. to post photos on facebook. I got a beautiful invitation for her wedding, and I didn't even send in the reply card. Nor did I send a card and gift yet. Maybe I will get that done today.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008


Just a quick post before I head to work.
I just found the answer to lolcats: loldogs!

see more dog pictures