Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Presidential Debate

The McCain Lip-Lick

I consider myself a moderate and enjoy playing devils advocate with whatever persons I find myself in company with. Maybe this is just my bias coming out but did anyone else notice the odd tick like action that perpetuated throughout the debate by McCain? He would flick his lower lip with his tong in a very consistent manner that gave him a very reptilian demeanor. I mean really, it was like watching a lizard and trying to guess when it would breathe next. I caught myself yelling, "Do it again!" at the screen. By the end of the debate his lips were red and almost chapped. Poor guy.

That being said, a lizard lick is a lot better than this:

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Little Friend

I came home this evening to find a partially eaten Junior Mint and the remainder of its box on my floor....
Wondering first what it was and second how it got there...I started thinking Rats! Then I was grossed out and then thought, wait no rat's can't do this.
Then I noticed the windows were open and the screen is broken. Only a furry little squirrel could pull this off.
I think I have a new friend visiting my room while I'm away.


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Freshies are Coming!

Aren't they cute? No, these kiddos are not Jessie's 4th-graders. Believe it or not, these baby-faced, born-in-1990, text-messaging, Ugg-wearing little darlings are about a third of my incoming "first-year students" for the fall. They had their New Student Convocation this afternoon so we all dressed up in our regalia and marched them across the campus under the banners of their respective colleges. It's a pretty fun tradition that they get to repeat again when they graduate - bagpipes and all! (And it's a good excuse for me to put some more miles on my mortar board...I love a parade!)

Would you like to get to know the freshies? Well, it's your lucky day, friends. Every year, the Beloit College Mindset List is published and distributed to higher-ed junkies like me. It's supposed to provide us context from which to relate to our freshies. You know what it really does? It makes my stomach hurt. I have to share this special pain so we can all feel old together. Are you ready? In my freshies' world:
- Harry Potter could be a classmate, playing on their Quidditch team.
- Since they were in diapers, karaoke machines have been annoying people at parties.
- They have always been looking for Carmen Sandiego.
- GPS satellite navigation systems have always been available.
- Coke and Pepsi have always used recycled plastic bottles.
- Gas stations have never fixed flats, but most serve cappuccino.
- Girls in head scarves have always been part of the school fashion scene.
- Grandma has always had wheels on her walker.
- Films have never been X rated, only NC-17.
- Clarence Thomas has always sat on the Supreme Court.
- Schools have always been concerned about multiculturalism.
- We have always known that “All I Ever Really Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten.”
- There have always been gay rabbis.
- IBM has never made typewriters.
- They have never been able to color a tree using a raw umber Crayola.
- There has always been Pearl Jam.
- Pee-Wee has never been in his playhouse during the day.
- They may have been given a Nintendo Game Boy to play with in the crib.
- Macaulay Culkin has always been Home Alone.
- They have never known life without Seinfeld references from a show about “nothing.”
- Windows 3.0 operating system made IBM PCs user-friendly the year they were born.
- Students always had Goosebumps.
How's that for a reality check? I'm going to go take my multi-vitamin, slather on the eye cream, and google-map the fountain of youth.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Holy Weston Noble, Batman!

A big treat this weekend for this choir dork: a three-day retreat with Weston Noble. Yes, THAT Weston Noble!
I got to listen, be inspired, learn, and even stand next to him and sing. And do you know how much it cost? Nothing! How can this be, you ask? Somehow I stumbled into a little Episcopalian church choir with a director who does big things - including rubbing elbows with Weston Noble. So sweet, 86-year-old, Dr. Noble thought nothing of coming clear across the country to spend three days with our choir. Definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

You know what was almost as good as a front row seat for Dr. Noble? Watching our good buddy (and aspiring choral conductor), Stephen Custer, attempting to write down and retain everything that came out of this man's mouth. When Dr. Noble complimented the height of Steven's eyebrows I thought he might burst from shear glee! And, later, when Dr. Noble GAVE STEPHEN A HUG we had to resuscitate him. Okay, maybe that's a slight exaggeration...Stephen never lost consciousness, but I'm pretty sure his feet left the ground.

Of course, all that inspiration can be exhausting so Becky and I had to take a little break.
We sure are hard workers...

The capper to the weekend was a brunch celebration for Karen's birthday.
That's the birthday girl (not a day over 35!) and our good friends Brett and Paul. Happy Birthday, Karen!!

Things of Note

Dear Readers,

I have come across a few interesting items in the last couple days and thought you I would pass on the info if you had not been paying attention.

1. Putting cue tips in your ears = bad. The reason it feels so good is cause of all the nerves in there and the fact that you're removing the wax which is a good thing in your ears which makes 'em itch. I am going to miss that good itch in the morning. Sigh.

2. New Microsoft ad made on Mac's. Oh the humor. This is why everyone should switch, even Microsoft does not use their own equipment.

3. Apple recalling the mini power adapter for the iPhone. Get your new one starting October 10th at the Apple stores.

Now you are in the know. And knowing is half the battle.


Thursday, September 18, 2008

Happy Happy!

A glance at the calendar reminds me that this is a big day for friends and fam. A post in their honor!

First, a very happy 30th birthday to my token Republican friend, JET (that's him on the right). Interestingly enough, his real head is only slightly smaller than this Headless Horseman impersonation. We don't bother trying to buy him hats...

JET and I normally exchange rude political birthday cards (and use our votes to cancel each other out), but I didn't get one in the mail this year. Don't get the wrong idea, dude, your Marian-the-Librarian lookin' VP candidate hasn't won me over! Seriously though, have an awesome birthday!

Today's other big news is Ben & Treena's fourth anniversary! Wahoo! Four years since somebody finally came along and told my brother to chill the heck out. We knew Treena was special when Ben actually listened ;) Here's the happy couple - civilized, refined, cultured...

Actually, these two are perfect for each other, and continue to be an inspiration for SoundGuy and me as proof that long-distance relationships can survive. Keep up the good work, kids!

(Hey Ben - if you give me your puppy I'll take this embarassing picture off my blog.)

Friday, September 12, 2008

iPhone 2.1 Firmware Update

For anyone paying attention, I did just finish upgrading to the iPhone firmware of 2.1 which was released this morning. These are my findings so far:

  1. Upgrade was easy without having to restore the phone.
  2. All the icons stayed in the same place.
  3. It of course removed my pwnage software but that was expected.
  4. 3G does say that it has more signal than normal in my room along with many others accounting that the phone is indicating better 3G connectivity.
  5. Applications do load much faster.
  6. Backup is much faster.
  7. Battery life seems to be holding a charge a little longer but I need to get through a few days before I confirm that.
  8. Genius feature added to the iPod.
So, if you don't mind losing your jailbreak, upgrade. It seems worth it.


Update: Had application Sync Problems (0xE800002E error) after I tried to update the applications iTunes suggested update. I had to deselect the applications that would not install and install them. Bit of a pain but worth the faster speed. Now to reorder the icons. Sigh.

Update #2: Quickpwned the iPhone and am reinstalling all my little toys. iPhone Dev Team amazes us yet again. Will post update on issues I find.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Choir

It's official. Soundguy has his own choir. The wonderful people and Cross Lutheran actually showed up and gave me a chance tonight. And, best of all, they sounded marvelous! They have voices, they have fun together, not the great at asking for prayers but I think they will all come along. Once again, God blesses me beyond measure and I am so excited for what music we will make together.

Also, I had my first Tater Tot Hot Dish. Quite good actually. It wasn't home made but still, the research continues.

Peace and blessings on you and your family,


Sunday, September 7, 2008

Happy Shower Day, Frankel!

Today was special. Not only was it "Mass on the Grass" (our affectionate term for the annual outdoor church service...which was actually "Mass on the Grass with Brass" since the quintet was there. Har har). Where was I? Oh, right- special day. Yes. It was special because we got to throw a baby shower for Frankel!
Pretty cute for a girl who can't even bend over, huh? WU friends Jen Taylor and Becky Foster rolled up their sleeves and look at the cool cake they made:

I had originally offered to bring cupcakes. Boy was I glad I'd opted to be in charge of punch instead! My little Duncan Hines with sprinkles numbers would have been shamed next to this culinary delight. See - you can never tell when that Liberal Arts education is going to come in handy.

We love you, Frankel! Thanks for letting us descend on your house to celebrate. Can't wait to teach Miss Addison a few things ;)

Watch out for the LHC on Wednesday

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Hotdish in the Wild

So when ChoirPres and I prepared to put together this blog, we came up with the whole Hotdish element as a unique element in Minnesota Culture. The longer I am here I find that it really is one of those phenomenons and last night, I saw Tater Tot Hot Dish on the first menu at a nice restaurant.

Of course that sparked some great conversations with the Californians I was with. A Wisconsinite (no clue if that's right) told us a story how one of the pastors she was working for told her "No Hot Dish's" for Innerfaith Dinner. Of course she was much more savy about it and clarified, "so you want cold cuts and pasta salad?" to which he replied, "Oh no," (think minnesota accent here people) "people bring mashed potatoes and soup and whatever else they can think of." She figured it out, I would not have, and said, "Ah, no casorol then. Gocha"

Someday I will get around to trying it. Till then I will continue to marvel in the quarky fun of this crazy State.


Friday, September 5, 2008

Back To School

When did I turn 18 again? Where did the days go where I was a real adult and did not have the urge to yell at my friends across campus and jump off curbs? And what is with these stacks of books?

Ten things that remind you that you're not in the "Real World" anymore:

10. Everyone walking around with backpacks on.
9. Walking down the hall to take a shower.
8. Twin size bed.
7. Having someone else cook and clean for you.
6. Coin Landry Machines
5. Rules against Candles
4. Having to lock your door every time you leave.
3. Florescent lighting...
2. That student ID card that buys everything you need.
1. Mini Fridge - Not big enough to hold a gallon of milk AND the the same time.

Be glad you are not back in school and enjoy the pleasures of life we take for granted like having food in the fridge whenever you want or being able to walk to the bathroom in your boxers without half the world seeing.


Thursday, September 4, 2008

It Isn't Fair!

Today SoundGuy went to SUPERTARGET (also known as the Happiest Place on Earth - don't believe those people at Disney) to buy organizational supplies WITHOUT ME! Harumph. I can't think of anyone who would have enjoyed that errand more than me. (Well, that's probably not very accurate. I'm sure this girl and this girl and this girl would have found it equally blissful, but my point is better illustrated if there really isn't a soul on this earth who could possibly have enjoyed it more so just overlook that, okay?) Sigh. There is no justice in this world.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Umm...When did I become a shipping clerk?

Again with the stuff they didn't teach us in college! After nearly a week of posting everything in sight on Ebay, I am starting to see some progress. People actually WANT this crazy stuff - who knew? There were even multiple bidders in the Bag-O-Ash. Go figure. Now I find myself in the roll of shipping clerk, and let me just tell you how glorious it is. Mounds of bubble wrap, miles of packing tape, and stacks and stacks of cardboard boxes teetering precariously over me at every turn. Checking my PayPal account every 22 seconds to be sure I'm shipping the right stuff to the right person, but only after they've paid, and - wait - did they specify insurance?, and on and on it goes.

Here's the other fun game a shipping clerk can play: drawing fully unsubstantiated conclusions about who these people (our "buyers") are based on where they live and what they've bought. For example, doesn't it seem pretty perfect that a set of hunting decoys was bought by someone in rural Arkansas? Or the fact that we are shipping two boxes worth of patriotic whiskey bottles to some guy in the backwoods of Kentucky? (How much do you wanna bet he's taking his moonshine business to a new level?). Here's the one that has me stumped, though: what is a little old lady in Michigan going to do with the Bag-O-Ash?

I leave you to ponder that. My 15-minute break is up. (I'm a good union shipping clerk, after all).