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October 2007
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December 2007

19 posts from November 2007

This Week In Internet: Clapping, Beer, Oprah, Sharpies

Remember, every time you click a link, a fairy gets its wings:

Check ya later, I gotta practice speed-clapping.

Recent Awkward Moment, Written in the Present Tense So You Can Feel the Uncomfortableness Right Along With Me

At the grocery store, I am standing and staring blankly and intensely at nothing in particular as I wait to pay for my groceries.  I'm fidgety, so I begin to crack my knuckles.  One of them stubbornly refuses to pop, so I employ the motion I always do when this happens: I make a fist with that hand and then repeatedly pound it against the palm of my other hand a few times.

Suddenly, I become aware of the fact that two lines over (in the general direction I am staring in), a young woman with a baby is looking at me with a mix of terror and confusion.  I realize she thinks I have been staring at her, but I don't get why she looks so afraid. Then I realize that the motion I am using to crack my knuckles is the exact same as the menacing motion the bad guys in movies usually make when they are threatening to punch someone.

Please tell me I am not the only person who goes into the store to buy Pop Tarts and ends up borderline assaulting women and small babies.


I have little to no aptitude for mechanical pursuits or anything that requires being handy, so usually when I have a mishap of the flat tire/clogged toilet/kitchen fire persuasion I do the following:

  1. See if the problem fixes itself (This has a success rate of .000001%)
  2. Google the problem if possible and see if there is a simple remedy (Moderately reliable method)
  3. Call my mom, dad, or brother (Also moderately reliable)
  4. If 1-3 fail, call an expert (This is reliably expensive)

However, I can also recall exactly two times in my life where help has come so swiftly and automatically that I didn't have to go through any of the steps on my list.  The first was in 1999 when I was traveling around suburban Ohio in a rental Oldsmobile Alero and it got a flat tire.  (I was in suburban Ohio because my younger sister was playing in a basketball tournament there, and instead of watching her team's fifth basketball game that weekend, one of the other big sisters and I decided to take her dad's rental car and find a mall or Burger King or something in which to entertain ourselves.  Unfortunately, what we "found" was a nail in the middle of the road.) 

Well, neither of our 16-year-old asses knew how to change a flat tire, and this was 1999, so we didn't have cell phones to call for help, either.  However, it turns out we didn't have to worry about any of that, because within 20 seconds of pulling the car over, a minivan stopped and the World's Most Wholesome Family Ever poured out.  There were eight of them, all with names like Caleb and Elizabeth Anne.  They were on their way home from church, and they were like a cross between the Partridge Family and Triple A.  I watched in awe as the younger boys stood in assembly line formation and passed tools along to the older sons, who skillfully changed our tire in a matter of minutes while the younger girls sang us a song to pass the time.  No joke.  It was the most surreal thing ever.

The second time was this weekend, when I decided to rake my lawn.  In order to perform this task I had only my grandma's teeny old rake, which would have been able to successfully clear our entire lawn in approximately seven hours.  Fortunately, I had just set the rake into the first section of leaves when my across-the-street neighbor came out of his house with a leaf blower and extension cord and offered to do my entire lawn for me. 

I put up the teensiest show of resistance ("No, I can't let you do that!  That's so much work . . . OK, you really want to?  Go ahead.") and then sat back and watched my neighbor cheerfully and efficiently cleared my lawn.  He wouldn't even let me pay him or anything.  It was awesome.

Unfortunately, it seems like the natural conclusion to this post is that having things done for you is awesome, and life is best when we are not challenged.  That wasn't exactly where I was trying to go with this, but it appears my experience with free leaflowing has made me too spoiled and lazy to care.

So, Where Do I Sign Up?

Perhaps you've heard about this survey, in which more than 3,000 NYU undergraduates were polled about their attitudes toward voting, already.  It's been getting a lot of media attention, and rightly so.  The results are very interesting.

Two-thirds say they'll do it for a year's tuition. And for a few, even an iPod touch will do.

That's what NYU students said they'd take in exchange for their right to vote in the next presidential election, a recent survey by an NYU journalism class found.

Only 20 percent said they'd exchange their vote for an iPod touch. But 66 percent said they'd forfeit their vote for a free ride to NYU. And half said they'd give up the right to vote forever for $1 million.

Um, hello, of course I would give up my right to vote for $1 million.  I'd only need about $8 of it to buy a roll of enough "I Voted" stickers to wear and fool everyone on every election day for the rest of my life--and then I could spend the other $999,992 on whatever the hell I wanted.  Deal!

In Other Words, My Entire Weekend Pretty Much Consisted of Lame Projects Involving My Dog

Behold: while you were spending your weekend watching football games and eating bonbons, I was unlocking the mysteries of the Puppy Head Tilt!

Everyone knows it's adorable when puppies and other bebbeh animals tilt their little heads (it is the official Cute Overload Rule of Cuteness #37, after all), and it turns out Pancake does a picture perfect head tilt every time I make a certain noise.

As if that weren't enough of an achievement, I also finished crocheting Pancake a lovely fall sweater last night.  Here are a few pictures of him modeling it:

Rustic fall sweater

America's Next Pup Model

Basically a model

There are also a couple miscellaneous new Pancake pictures in his photoset.

All in all, this was the most productive weekend I've had in quite a while.

This Week In Internet: Onions and iPods, Clippy, and Ridiculous Toys

This weeks links are awesome.  You need to click them all--especially if . . .

. . . You are a nerd.

. . . You like lists.

. . . You were wondering what that Dell kid has been up to.

The Way of the Cookie Cake

Finally had a chance to update Flickr with something other than puppy photos:

Possibly my favorite picture from the second set is this one--

Dead clown

--which is of the cake our friend Sarah bought for Carolyn's birthday in September.  I'm glad the bakery person at Safeway or whatever has already mastered the No. 1 rule of cookie cake decorating: THERE IS NOTHING ON EARTH MORE FESTIVE THAN A DEAD CLOWN.