Thursday, December 30, 2004


It's my usual year end routine to make New Years resolutions. I don't mind that they're pretty much the same from year to year. It's kind of fun to look back at the end of the year and think about how well I accomplished them (or not). I don't think I'm going to make any for 2005, though. When I look back and remember where I thought I'd be at the end of 2004 and compare it to what has actually happened, I realize that sometimes you just don't even have a clue how life is going to change or how you are going to change it. It wasn't like I was caught at the mercy of events going on around me. I somehow found a way to stop hiding from and avoiding things in my life that felt oppressive. In the process, I shocked a lot of people who thought they knew me well and some of them were definitely not pleased. I know I hurt some people too, and I'm sorry for that. But I like how things are now much better, even if I'm going to start out the first week of the new year in court. The legal shit will someday pass and be done with. Even with it still going on, I find myself looking over my shoulder less often and expressing myself more. I'm looking forward to seeing what 2005 will bring.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

OK. I've been a little slow on the uptake here, but far be it from me to deny Kinga her request! (and I'd certainly hate to have to eat a spider.)

3 Names you go by:
PBS (back when my last inital was S)

3 screen names you have:
bogaht sis
that's about it

3 things you like about yourself
sense of humor
ability to read people pretty well

3 things you dislike about yourself
can be quite obsessive
hesitation to speak my mind at times

3 parts of your heritage
Something northern European

3 things that scare you
The people in Walmart
North Korea

3 of your everyday essentials
My honey
Internet access

3 things you are wearing right now
Sweat pants
A hoodie

3 of your favorite bands/artists
The Black Crows
Foo Fighters
The Who

3 of your favorite songs at present
If Only - Queens of The Stone Age
Ode to Rochester-- Shuttlecock
Feel Good Hit Of The Sun-- Queens of The Stone Age

3 things you want to try in the next 12 months
Play more music!!!
Start selling some of the items I craft
Write songs

3 things you want in a relationship
Love, loyalty and understanding.

2 truths and a lie
I'm terrible at small talk and networking.
I'm fluent and literate in Japanese.
I have a natural knack for neatness.

3 physical things about the opposite or same sex that appeals to you
Broad shoulders
Intelligent eyes

3 things you just can�t do
Go to bed early
Cut or draw a straight line
Stop hoping stupid people will get a clue

3 of your favorite hobbies
Playing guitar and bass

3 things you want to do really badly right now
Knit, have a drink, take a nap.

3 careers you�re considering
Translator (more than I do now)
Something legal
Writer (of some sort. Have always wanted to do that.)

3 places you want to go on vacation

3 kids names

3 things you want to do before you die
Find a job I like that pays enough for me to live on
Settle into a home that really feels like mine
Write a book

3 people who have to take this quiz now or eat a spider!
Chosen One, Nils and Joel

Monday, December 27, 2004


There was a time when I used to have nightmares about tidal waves. I had dreams of them washing into Waikiki as a wall of water as tall as the big hotels there. From what I have read it's not so much the height of the wave as the length of it. It's the way they continue to move in and don't recede. There is no way I can even begin to comprehend the magnitude of the disaster in Southeast Asia. Some of my friends vacation there this time of year and the local tv news here ran a story about a local family who are travelling the world for a year and were separated, and fortunately reunited after disaster in Thailand, but that's not the real story and I wonder how the stories of people so privileged can trump the story of the collosal damage caused to tens of thousands of people who didn't have much to start with, at least not compared to our ways of life.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Here She Is....

Of course Christmas is not just about the gifts, but I just absolutely have to show you this.

Isn't it gorgeous? Couldn't you just yelp with happiness for me? Did I tell you it was just one of many wonderful gifts from my awesome boyfriend, who has a pretty fine collection of guitars himself?
My fingers are sore from playing so much already. I stayed up until 1 last night playing it and I've already played a little bit today as well. A Telecaster has been my dream guitar for at least five years now. I still remember the first time I ever touched one down at the Guitar Center in Danvers. I picked it up, plugged it into whatever amp they had sitting there and just melted inside. I'm playing mine through my bass amp for now, which is just fine. I'm dying to crank it, but that will have to wait until I take it over to my sister's place and convince her to let me play it through her Twin Reverb. This guitar sounds so Tele-sweet and the neck is so easy to play. The Tele even matches my P-bass Deluxe, which also sports that beautiful sunburst paint job. The two of them are just such things of awesome beauty. Here's another picture. (please excuse the crazy reflection of the flash coming off the Tele. I'm too excited to pay too much attention to the photography right now.)

Saturday, December 25, 2004

The Day Has Come and Gone

It's late and I'm tired, so I'll try to keep this short. This has been a long and glorious Christmas day. It has been filled with joy, laughter, great company, great food and some of the most incredible presents I have ever received (Including a Telecaster!!!!! I'll tell you more later. Too many times probably, but I am just SOOOOOO excited about it.) But even better than any of my presents was the time I got to spend celebrating with people I love and some gestures of acceptance that will make it easier for me to draw together all the people I love and not have to feel torn. It's funny what will win people over and when something that seems so small will have a big impact. You can just never tell how contagious optimism and a positive attitude will be and when they will help someone else see things in a new light.

Friday, December 24, 2004

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas! I hope you're all having as nice a Christmas as I am. I'll fill you in at another time. But I can say, it doesn't suck.

Are We Having Fun Yet?

It's not like I'm hosting any dinner parties for 20 or am expected to come up with magnificent, extravagant presents for dozens of people, so why do I feel so much stress over "getting everything right" for this holiday? Aren't I supposed to be realxing and enjoying time with loved ones? Not that I'm not doing that. It has happened occasionally over the past few weeks, but it's always the unplanned, simple stuff.
Cable guy is here to fix the damn tv. Must go deal so I can get him out of here and go run more errands.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004


The cold horizon
holds onto orange while
the rest of the sky lightens

Monday, December 20, 2004

I Need A Media Blackout

Hmm. Okay. I'm ready for Christmas to be here and gone already. I feel myself getting sucked into the last minute rush. I entertain thoughts of just one more gift that will really be just the right one. What about the ones already sitting in my closets? Just one more recipe to try. Just one more gift to buy. Just four more days to get whatever IT is done. Being indecisive and always open to the possibility that something else might make a better gift, be more well received and in turn I will be more...what? More perfect? More loved? More accepted? Why do I stress over this stuff so much?


I think I'm starting to like winter. When I got up this morning there wasn't much snow on the ground, so I woke up the girl and we started in with the regular Monday morning routine. As an afterthought I decided we should check the local news station to see if the school opening had been delayed, an indeed it had. I was already too awake to go back to bed, but now I know if there's any white on the ground, I best check Channel 9 before I wake up too much.
The weather report said the snow would stop around noon and accumulation would be just about one inch. At 4pm, it's still snowing and there are about 3-4 inches of light fluffy snow on the ground. Easy to shovel but not so hot to drive in. Everything outside is white, black and gray.
I'm inside trying out various holiday recipes with varying degrees of success. The girl is properly geared up and out playing in the snow with her best friend and bf's little brother. I'll start up a fire in the fireplace soon and turn on the lights of the tree and enjoy the moment. I think I feel my Grinch heart growing.

If I Were an Artist

De Kooning
Super!! You are WILLEM DE KOONING.
You think just like you paint: in the abstract. You
live well outside of the box and never know
where life will take you next. Your friends
admire your ability to fearlessly veer away
from the boundaries of society.

Which famous artist most reflects your personality?
brought to you by Quizilla

Saturday, December 18, 2004

Nearly Solstice

I might be wrong about this, but it seems like the sun is setting a little later even though we aren't quite at the winter solstice yet. Yesterday it was light until nearly 4:45. It stays dark longer in the morning, but since I'm finished with classes for the semester and am able to sleep in a little bit, that doesn't bother me so much.
I seem to have my annual is-it-or-isn't-it the flu bug. Dizzy, kind of nauseous, headaches for days. Fun, fun, fun. I slept 12 hours last night and still feel tired today. Everyone tells me I'm going through a lot. I suppose that's true. It's been quite a year. I haven't even started to entertain thoughts of my New Year's Resolutions. I think a little more peace and calm might be on the list of things I'd like to acheive in 2005. I'm not going to even bother with a Christmas wish list because I'm one of those people who would actually be pleased to get socks or pot holders or anything, really. I'm pretty easy to please on that front, especially since I just moved again in August and haven't really accumulated a household full of stuff that "normal" people my age seem to have.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

When I Grow Up I Wanna...

I always wanted to be a writer, ever since I was little kid devouring books as fast as I could. When I was in high school Arthur Miller came to my English class. That's one of the perks of going to a fancy prep school, famous people come and talk to you and you don't have a fucking clue that they are a Major American Literary Figure because you're just 15 and more concerned about the big zit on your forehead than some old guy visiting your class of 12 students giving you advice to write about the things you think no one else will ever understand because that's exactly what touches people and they do understand it. About fifteen years ago I had a friend who advised that when you write something you'd feel weird about your parents reading, then you probably have something good.
I don't know how to write plots or characters or settings. I want to write about things that will make people squirm a little, not in a macabre sense, but out of some form of recognition, sort of the way it feels when you have an itch inside your foot or on the back of your shin bone. I realize that's a pretty high ambition for a person who can't even keep her shoes tied for more than 20 minutes at a stretch. But the only way to write things that make someone else squirm is for me to write things that make me squirm at the thought of someone else reading them, especially if the reader is someone who knows me. I don't care so much if it's someone I never have to deal with on a face to face basis. Most people, especially writers, are easier to deal with in this two dimensional medium. It's like the way some people will tell their life story to a stranger sitting next to them in an airplane or at the same table at the laundromat while waiting for your laundry to rinse, which is something I can't do , by the way. In those situations, I always just listen.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Tis The Season

My Christmas tree is beautiful. Why do I have a tree? Aren't I Jewish? Yes, I am Jewish by birth, though not really by belief at this point and I have a tree because they are pretty. This is the second tree I have ever had. I shouldn't call it my tree. I should call it our tree because it's for my girl and my sweetheart, not just me.
The tree is about 7 feet tall and perfectly shaped. It has clear lights, lots of ornaments, tinsel and a red and white skirt. A lot of the ornaments are new and shiny, but a lot of them are older and unique and belong to my boyfriend. He knows how to do up a Christmas tree. I'm kind of behind the curve in that area, seeing as how the only other tree I've really ever decorated was last year's and that was basically me doing it all by myself. I didn't even know to buy ornament hangers at first.
We never had a tree when I was a kid, not even a "Hanukkah Bush". That's such a blatant attempt to mimic the Christmas tree anyway.
So now I celebrate the season without much of any religious significance. I used to boycott Christmas because I felt it was a religious holiday and to celebrate it while ignoring the religious meaning was disrepectful. Now I don't care so much. I suppose I take a more pagan approach now. I mean, there is less than 9 hours of daylight here, and that's on days when the sun actually shines upon us. It's cold and dark, so why the hell not bring a little greenery inside and make it pretty and shiny, listen to and sing songs and eat, drink and be merry? Real winter kicks in from here on out. The daylight will increase, but the temperatures are going to drop and eventuallly we'll get ice and snow that doesn't melt away for months. We all ought to enjoy what we can while we can.

Monday, December 13, 2004


The antidote to too many chocolate and peanut butter chip cookies is the workout and fitness shows on On Demand. At least I feel a little less pukey now.

Saturday, December 11, 2004

Everyone Else Learned in Kindergarten

It seems apparent that I need remedial lessons in shoe tying. My laces come untied at least half a dozen times a day. Eveyone who knows me knows my shoes are always untied. It's very annoying on rainy days. I remember my mother teaching me how to tie them. No one else in the family seems to have the problem. We happened to run into my sister and niece today when we were out getting a xmas tree today. My sister looked down and said, "Pam! Look! Your shoe is untied!" It was probably the fifth time of the day.
If you see a grown woman with long brown hair and an untied shoe or two, it very well may be me. You can say "Hey, Pam. Your shoe's untied."
I'll say, "I know. They always are"

Friday, December 10, 2004

Not Just Me?

I was in Earcraft this morning to return my girl's rental flute since my mom got her one of her very own. There was a lot going on at the counter. I saw Chad, who is the bass guy there, but I didn't say hi because he was busy with customers and it's been a long time since I was in there talking about basses with him and he may or may not remember me anyway. I smiled and did the head bob acknowledgement thing instead.
The guy who helped me was going through a manilla folder full of band instrument rental receipts and preparing the proper forms for the rental return and I was flitting around from the glass case full of effects pedals to the used bass amps, with a glance at the rack of strings in between. It was taking a few minutes and I thought about buying new strings for the bass and then remembered I need to get a strap for the girl's acoustic guitar, so I asked about whether they had kid-sized straps, too. By the time the guy finished all the paper work I had drifted rather far afield. He called over to me, "You're all set."
I was a little startled and came back with , "Oh, me? Oh, okay. Thanks. Sorry, I have a hard time focusing in here."
He said, "Yeah, I do too, actually."

Here She Goes Again...

This time of year drives me nuts. I don't know if it's the holidays, the weather, lack of daylight, the astrological circumstances or all of the above, but I tend not to feel right. I feel too scattered, like I make too many mistakes and like I'm disconnected because if I don't disconnect everything is too intense. The choice seems to be drama queen or zomboid. Not my favorite choices.
I know a lot of you think it's all bullshit, but the moon has been in Scorpio and Scorpio has a tendency to fry my ass. Tomorrow is a new moon and all my favorite astrologers are promising things will relax a bit after that. That would be good.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004


What a nasty day it was today. I woke up to the sounds of the city plows scraping snow off the streets. I decided to hit the snooze buttom for an extra ten minutes of hiding in bed and then climbed out and headed for the tv once I saw how the streets were looking outside. Every school district in the area, except ours, had called for a delayed opening. I considered the state of the roads, the timing between when I drop my girl off to school and when my first class starts, the importance of what we would have accomplished in class today, my general motivation level and the number of times I have cancelled class this semester (zero) and decided it was a great day to cancel my 9am class. So I did. I emailed my students and most of them got the message before they got out of the house (or even their pajamas), so that was pretty good. I shoveled the stairs, cleaned the snow off the car and got the girl to school on time. I spent the morning taking care of household type tasks and got to school in the early afternoon. There was a decent turn out for class considering the weather. I was only there for a couple of hours but by the time I was ready to leave there was a nice coating of ice over every surface of the car that required scraping. So, are you wishing you lived in Northern New England yet?
The weather this evening has been sleet and rain. All the windows on the north side of the house are coated in ice. I've got a fire going in the fireplace. It doesn't crackle because it's a gas fireplace, but it's still cozy. The thought of not having to go out to the mall is motivating me to overspend on online shopping. What I really need to do is go sit by the fire and knit more gifts. And so, I will.

Monday, December 06, 2004

Happy Chanukah!

It looks like it's fun to party with the Chanukah faeries.

Moronic Monday

I can't believe I just discovered where the faculty microwave is on this floor. I've only been here for over a year now. Hmm, I suppose this could expand my lunch options greatly (and cut down on the amount of leftovers that get tossed out at home).

Monday is No Fun Day

I hate Monday and today is a very Monday Monday. Work bums me out because I wonder how much longer I'll actually be here and when I think it could be just one more semester I start to lose motivation. At least the evaluations have already been submitted and this is the last week of classes. I can get through a few more days of this.
I thought I was all cool with the holidays and how and with whom we would be celebrating them, but that apparently is being turned upside down right now. Chanukah starts tomorrow night and I don't even have a menorah. I'm not a very religious Jew, but I am Jew enough to know in the overall scheme of things, Chanukah is not a big deal, not like Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. It has been said about me before, and I'll say it again-- I'm a bad jew. Sue me. That and a few bucks will get you a latte at Starbucks.
The day started out okay enough. I got up and did a short "power yoga" workout that I found on On Demand. I pay enough for the damn tv service every month, I might as well use some of the features. And if I can use them to actually get up off my ass and exercise a bit, well that's just peachy. Yup, everything's peachy. Except my sucky mood and I'll keep that to myself and my blog.

Friday, December 03, 2004

My sister and I have a little routine going. Every Friday morning that we're both free, we meet downtown at Harvey's for breakfast and a gabfest. We drink way more coffee than is good for us and good, real, hearty breakfasts. No egg white omelets for these girls. We fill each other in on family stuff and I get a chance to vent a little about my (God, please make it really really soon officially, please) ex. My bro in law is still mad at me, or at the way, according to his perceptions, that I went about things. I'm not mad at him. He doesn't know how my life was, not really. He doesn't know all my reasons and he really doesn't need to. I wake up every morning liking my life a whole lot better now. Hmm, I'm veering on a tangent. That's because I am annoyed. I try not to be publically annoyed at the ex. I even try not to be privately annoyed. But despite my best efforts, sometimes I find myself feeling that way anyway.
I suppose what I really need to do is tear myself away from this damn computer, sweep the kitchen floor, vacuum the living room, write back to my mother, and take care of some banking type stuff. It's so much fucking fun to be a grown up. Really.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Animal Instinct

All this dwindling daylight is making me want to eat like there's no tomorrow. This is the season of the battle between willpower and the animal urge to plump up those fat stores to get you through the barren months of winter. I try to explain to my fat stores that I live in a heated residence and there's plenty of food available no matter what the season is. They don't always want to listen to my brand of reason.
I try to fool them by drinking hot herbal tea. They say, "How about a cookie to go with that beverage?" I knit, because you can't eat and knit at the same time. That actually works out pretty well. It stops me from eating and shortens the list of Christmas presents I need to go out and buy.
I stopped waking up early to do yoga because the sun doesn't rise until nearly 7 these days. Doing yoga in the dark wasn't my intention. Doing yoga as the sky lightened was. By the time the sky is brightening, it's already the part in the morning routine where I'm checking my email, making our lunches, and trying to convince the girl to come out from under the covers. We have a routine. Her clock radio goes off. I let it play until the djs get so stupid that I go in her room and hit the snooze button. It goes off again 9 minutes later. I go in and turn it off and then I wake her up. Good thing I got her that radio alarm clock back in September, huh?

December 1, 2004

If there were ever a day made for staying home in bed under the covers, this is it. It's gray, cool, wet and windy. The general consensus here seems to be that at least if it were snow, we'd all have been able to stay home in bed.
It's the first of December. It's been a crazy year. If you had told me a year ago where I'd be now, I would have taken the bong away from you. I don't even have a bong now.
Big, big, big changes. The astrologers were right. It's been a transformative year.

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

The Perfect Gift for Pot-Head Parents

Finally, pot-head parents have a storybook for their children, who have been sorely neglected in the politically correct diversity of modern day children's stories.
"Mommy, what's that smell?"
"It's Just a Plant, dear."

On Single Repeat, Ad Nauseum

Repeating on the ipod until everything else leaves my mind.Not so much for the lyrics, which really don't make that much sense to me. I just like the song.

If it gets you down well then I'll take it
If it gets you up well I don't want it
It let you down so broken hearted
If it gets you down well then I want it
If only, if only
If only, if only
If only, if only
If only,
If only we're nothing at all

So blow our mind and make it lazy
Those long long days with no escaping
I hold the wheel to let it go
Don't wanna stop, don't wanna know
If it gets you down, well just don't blame me
If only, if only
If only, if only
If only, if only
If only, if only
If only, if only
If only, if only
If only, if only
If only,
If only we're nothing at all

-- Queens of the Stone Age

Well, At Least Lunch Was Tasty

I wonder how I can end up being depressed by bad news I knew was coming anyway. The signs all point in a direction that says I need to find a new job and a new profession come spring. I like what I do, but I don't make a liveable wage here. I'm fairly sure there's nowhere else to do it around here other than where I am. I don't want to move away. Add up that equation and it all equals finding a new job in a new field. I've got skills, they just aren't the kind anyone around here needs or wants to compensate for.
Gee, maybe I ought to go ahead and write that Great American Novel I always said I wanted to write, even though I don't write fiction.
Anyone want to pay me to knit and watch tv?

Sunday, November 28, 2004

Ever Feel You're Being Watched?

If you blog (which I kind of assume most people who read blogs do), have you ever tried writing while someone was watching you? It's hard! There probably shouldn't be any difference because it's not like the observer is seeing the thoughts going through your head, some being considered and rejected, others making it down through your finger to the keys and into the screen. And once it's out there I don't mind so much who reads it, although I did start the blog with the assumption that no one who knows me would read it. I wonder why it feel so funny.

Holiday Weekend Wrap-up

Looks like I took most of the Thanksgiving weekend off from blogging. Once I finished up a proofreading job, I also took it off from working in just about any way shape or form. Wish I could find a job being a professional relaxer.
This intro to the holiday season went pretty well, all things considered. I got to spend time with all my loved ones. I got to eat lots of yummy food. There were no fights or arguments. There was lots of pie. I got some knitting done.
Not everything went my way, but having everything go my way is a lot to expect. I've got a lot to be thankful for and that's what Thanksgiving is supposed to be about, along with all the rest of it.
The Christmas season seems to already be in full swing. I see lights and decorations up on houses all over the place. The stores are full of shoppers and Christmas music. I have to be wise and take it easy with the Christmas shopping. There are a lot of things I'd like to make for people instead. I'm not sure if that's considered kosher or not in this day and age, but I'm Jewish to begin with (though not actively so) and it's more about the season than the day itself.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004


I woke up this morning to find a white hair laying on the pillow next to me. It was mine, of course. I'm almost 40, so I guess white hairs shouldn't be much of a surprise. Between that and the stress I'm under these days, I should be glad I still have hair on my head at all!


I'm on vacation until Monday! I can sure use the break. Things started off a little rough yesterday as I came home from work to find more legal, divorce related stuff in my mailbox, but I dealt with what I needed to of it for now, and the rest can wait for a few days.
I've noticed I've got a regular reader who accesses this blog from my school's domain. My guess is that one of my students who lives on campus has discovered this blog and now knows waaaaaay more about me than necessary. I suppose that's all right. It could be worse, it could be a colleague checking it out!! Do I really mind? No. If I did I wouldn't have spent the past two years writing this stuff. It might seem like I put everything out here, but there's still a lot I keep private.

Monday, November 22, 2004

I Hope All My Pieces Fit Together

You Are the Stuffing

You're complicated and complex, yet all your pieces fit together.
People miss you if you're gone - but they're not sure why.

Perspective Check

When I followed the "Next Blog" link at the top of my page toDeath Maiden I thought it was maybe the blog of some heavy metal chick. Not so. It is the blog of a nurse who works with patients at the end of their lives.
I've learned quite a bit in the past few days of reading this blog, including the word "palliative". It also helps to pull things into perspective.

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Weak End?

On Saturday morning I had the dubious honor of attending a child impact seminar for fours, for which I paid $75. This all thanks to the court system of NH which orders all divorcing parents to participate in the seminar. It was well run and actually pretty good, as far as sitting in a room for four hours with 20 other strangers going through their own personal crises can be. There were two presenters, one male, one female, who traded on and off throughout the session. Verbal participation was completely voluntary and at first I kept my mouth shut, but the ever attentive student within me couldn't help but pipe up with comments and contributions as time went on and the presenters elicited comments and responses.
It was good information that they put forth and the emphasis was on learning how to communicate effectively with your co-parent for the best interests of your children. But that's only going to work when both parents are interested in making it work. It can't work when someone is keeping score. I've read lots of books and they all say if you want to do what's in the best interest of your child, stay out of court, suck it up, be adults, sit down with a mediator and work it out. That doesn't work when only one side is willing to do that and the other one interprets the suggestion to pursue that path as an admission of guilt, an attempt at sneakiness or just plain old weakness. Or perhaps the other side is so afraid to take responsibility for the outcome that they would rather put it in the hands of some stranger with a title.
God, I can't wait for this shit to be over and done with.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Up and Down

I went to see Bob Dylan and his band with my boyfriend last night. It was an interesting and entertaining show. The way Dylan phrases his songs started to remind me of Louis Armstrong doing What a Wonderful World. I don't intend that as a criticism, just an observation. Despite being a little disappointed that Dylan played keyboards all night and never once touched a guitar, I was happy to be able to go see a living legend perform live and there were many moments of great music and great musicianship during the evening. I also enjoyed checking out the crowd almost as much as the show itself. Lots of old hippies and old hippies with their late teen/early twenties children in attendance. I heard a guy sitting near us say to a friend, "I saw him back in 64!" That's cool. I wasn't even alve then. I hope we're still going to see rock shows twenty or thirty years from now.I started to wonder who will still be around and playing then. So far the only sure candidate I came up with was Dave Grohl. Anyway, last night was good.
This morning I slept in until 8 and then went for a walk since it was an unseasonably warm day. The phone rang just as I got back home. It was my sister wanting to know if I was interested in meeting her for breakfast. We just got together for lunch on Tuesday, but sometimes we go weeks without seeing each other, so I knew I wanted to take the chance since it had presented itself. We met at Harvery's Bakery and had a nice breakfast and gabfest. Harvey's may well be my favorite downtown Dover breakfast spot, especially since they always give you a little piece of a danish or some other pastry with your order.
Breakfast was good. It meant I got to school later than I had intended and didn't get as much work done as I had meant to. I figured I could end the 2 hour class a little early and get it done after.
I got to class a little after noon and a couple of the students suggested we check out the International Food Lunch being held on campus at the international dorm from 11-2. We have a two hour long class on Friday. I didn't have anything particularly exciting planned for today and we had a Japanese grad student visiting the class for the day, so I decided we could go spend the second part of class "being international". There was a good variety of food and the day was nice so we all sat outside on a porch and ate and talked. I had a blast watching how everyone interacts outside of class. This is my second year working with this group of students and I really enjoy them all as people, as well as students. There's a nice mix of personalities in the class and they've really come together as a group.
After lunch we went to the Dairy Bar. A couple of the students had previously told me they wanted to take the Japanese student to the Dairy Bar and show him how ice cream is done here in NH, so they invited him and me and the rest of the class to come along. Most of us who didn't have other things to do joined in. I hadn't planned on eating ice cream. I hadn't even planned on eating lunch at school, but sometimes you need to take advantage of opportunities when they arise. It was fun watching the students use the language they have been studying in an actual conversation with a native speaker of the language. They make me feel like no matter what happens with my job at that school in the future, at least I have accomplished something while I've been there.
So where's the down side to my Up and Down title? Well, I'm in the middle of a divorce and interwoven through all these nice happenings are dealings with my lawyer and my ex over custody arrangements for the holidays. I'm trying to realize that this time through, the whole season is probably going to suck bad for me. I just want it to be as good as it can be for my girl. Ever since my junior year of high school, when my younger sister flipped out for good and got committed to a psychiatric hospital just days before Thanksgiving , the holidays have not been the easiest of seasons for me. I still get caught up having to decide how to spend which days and occasions with my own parents. Now it's got double layers because I have to figure out when I can be with my own child and then which of my own parents we're going to spend time with on what occasion. She never really got to celebrate Thanksgiving or Christmas while we were in Japan and I was so happy when we came back here and she had the chance to have a "real" holiday season. For one holiday season, anyway. Basically, just thinking about it makes me feel like my heart is being ripped out of my chest. So I suppose that makes it even that much more important to take advantage of those spur of the moment chances to make connections with the people around me.
All of the people who are close to me keep telling me, "It's not going to be like this forever. You're going to get through it and you'll be fine." I like to hear that. It's easy to lose sight of that in the day to day when it seems like this has all been going on for so long.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Three Months and Counting

It has been three months since I moved into my apartment. It feels like longer than that. I am happy with what it is and where it is. It's not perfect. The rent is kind of killing me and sometimes the neighbors downstairs are loud at night, but it more or less feels like a house rather than an apartment. It's convenient. My girl's school is right around the corner and it's a just a ten minute drive to get to work. It looks like a home, not a stop along the way or a collection of junk someone dragged home from Goodwill. It's home, for now.
I don't know why I'm already worrying about my next move. Not necessarily house-wise, but life-wise. I need to find a job that actually feeds my bank account as well as my ego. Teaching is fun. I love it when students tell me they feel like they are really learning something. I can see their progress and it makes me feel good to know I've helped guide them a little. Emotionally it has been a very sustaining experience for me, when I sometimes feel like so much else of what I do is not always so constructive. I mean, I identify myself as a teacher. I don't really just forget about my job when I get in my car to drive home every day. It takes me out of my own problems. I like the interaction, even when I feel like I'm too tired for it. I think I make myself tired a lot these days mulling over things I can't change or make happen faster.
I'm here for the rest of the academic year. After that? I don't know.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Kids These Days...

I had two students come up to me today and ask if they could take the final exam on an earlier day because the way it has been scheduled it either falls right on or the day after their brithdays. Boo fucking hoo.
Being the damn softie that I am, I gave a non-comittal answer today and said I would think about it. Now that I have thought about it, I think I have the perfect solution. They may take a final earlier in the week with the intermediate or advanced classes. The only catch is they will have to take the final exam I am giving for that class.

I Find This Fishy

You are 60% Pisces

Monday, November 15, 2004

The Big Disconnect

Oh dear lord, no wonder the birthrate is shrinking in Japan. Now all those men who have been pushed aside for the the boyfriend arm pillow (with sales copy that boasts, "This pillow could be an emotional comfort") can seek solace in the girlfriend's lap pillow. Can't people just use a regular pillow and their imaginations?! Or *gasp* find an actual human being to touch?
What really scares me is that there are obviously people willing to pay about $80 for an amputated, simulated corpse for their "emotional comfort". I do not find that a comforting thought at all.
via Robert Brady.

I won't feel guilty. Really.

One of the less fun aspects of my job is having to teach the lesson that being a nice person and having intended to try harder just doesn't cut the mustard.

Friday, November 12, 2004


Wow. It has begun.
The day started out cold and overcast and I was congratulating myself for finding a black, hooded, down jacket at TJMaxx for just $50 yesterday. The weather forecast has been saying snow and rain on Friday afternoon for days now, but actually seeing and being out in it is not the same as watching the guy on tv say it.
It's cold, raw, wet and dark out. Not pitch black dark yet because that won't happen for another 30 minutes or so, but it's dark enough for the lights to be on in the house before 4pm. The snow isn't sticking to the roads, but it is on the lawns, naked tree branches and rooftops. I was able to leave school before it had accumulated too much on my car.
This kind of weather used to depress me. I'm sure it will when we hit the fifth straight month of it in March, but for right now, it fascinates me. I'm cozy at home, drinking a cup of hot chocolate. Everything is quiet except for the heat coming up from the furnace and the keys on the computer. Tonight I'm looking forward to snuggling up on the couch and knitting.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Yarn Lust

The mittens are done. I have a scarf and a slipper in progress. I think this means it's time to start thinking about my next knitting project. And I just happened to see that the new Stich 'n Bitch book is out. Coincidence? I think not.

Oh Dear, Not Just Game. Game and Beer!

So, it seems someone wants to know about the meat. Well, it wasn't just a wild game dinner. It was a wild game and beer dinner. A five course extravaganza of game dishes prepared with beer accompanied by a different beer for each course. I held strong through the early rounds, but by the next to last course my capacity was flagging and I had to bring home a lot of the food and leave standing two nearly full glasses of beer. Oh, the thought of it pains me so! But it's not like I could ask the waiter to pack up my beer as well.
Where to begin? I mean, I already have begun, but this meal and dining experience deserves a play by play accounting. The setting: Molly Malone's, an Irish pub and restaurant located in an old 19th century brick house on the corner of Penhallow and State Streets in Portsmouth, NH. The participants: myself, my boyfriend and a perkily flamboyant waiter named John who literally cheered us on to "EAT! EAT! EAT!"
The meal started with a glass of beer that was identified as A Toast with Molly's Irish Red. That one went down pretty easily. The first course (I'm working from memory here because someone seems to have taken the menu to work with him or something this morning) was an appetizer of duck sausage with a something mustard sauce, frog legs cooked in a casserole dish with a sauce I can no longer identify and little Kobe beef burgers, which I heard the waiter jokingly describe to another table as "Kobe Bryant burgers". I'm not sure how Kobe beef fits into the game classification in a strict sense because those cows get more care and attention than some peoples' kids. Then again, I assume most of what we had for dinner was farm raised game. I doubt anyone was out with a musket taking down the wild boar. The accompanying beer was Pilsner Urquell. The sausage was delicious, as was the kobe beef burger. I had a little of the frog legs (had to conserve space, you know) which I found not really to be like chicken, but more like chicken crossed with fish, which seems to make a fair amount of sense to me.
The second course was roasted pheasant on a bed of fresh greens with roasted beets and deep fried butternut squash croutons. The pheasant has been marinated in ... a beer. It was very moist with a wonderful flavor. The beer for this course was Samuel Adams. I was still holding strong at this point and starting to put on a good buzz, as well.
If memory serves me well, the third course was a venison and ostrich chili made with Guinness Stout, accompanied by a glass of the good, thick brown stuff. It was a great chili. It had a nice kick and a little sweetness. Perhaps it was the Guinness that started to slow me down at this point. My pace had slowed, but I made it through the chili and eventually through the glass of Guinness. That is one recipe I would love to have.
The fourth and most sumptuous course was where I hit the wall. I really wanted to make way way through it all; the Old Thumper Hassenpheffer stew, a wild boar chop marinated in some .... beer, roasted vegetables and polenta with goat cheese. My god, rabbit is tasty. The stew was incredible, another recipe I would absolutely love to get my hands on. The beer was something from The Shipyard Brewing Company. A quick visit to their site shows that their Old Thumper won Best in Show in Los Angeles and I'm sure that must have been what was in the stew. I barely touched the beer and had to bring home most of what was on my plate. That's okay. It's going to be make a great lunch today!
The desert course was Pumpkinhead Ale bread pudding with a chocolate hazelnut sauce and a glass of Pumpkinhead Ale. I love bread pudding and it was a nice firm one, but I was just too stuffed. It made a lovely breakfast this morning, however. I bought some Pumpkinhead Ale last fall. It's interesting stuff and tastes very much of pumpkin pie spices. It's the kind of thing I like to have one of once a season, but a little goes a long way.
Even though it was a chilly night, my honey and I went for a little walk around town after dinner. I'm so old school, or maybe just old, but I walk through that town mentally identifying everything as what it used to be. "Oh! Strawberry Bazaar! That used to be down on the Vaughn Mall. I used to shop for holiday presents for my parents there." "Hmm, Saucy Grace's? Nope, that's where Goldie's used to be. Can you believe there's no decent Jewish deli in town anymore?" And on and on I go.
It was a wonderful meal with wonderful company. If you want better details of the menu, check here for an account of the same meal by the one who went to work with the menu today. I realize the extent to which I am treading on the soils of dorkdom here, but fuck it. We enjoy ourselves and each other. The rest of you can deal, or not, as you choose.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Mittens and Meat

The forecast for temperatures in the teens last night motivated me to finally knit up a mitten to match the first one I made a couple of weeks ago. I thought I was going to run out of yarn before I finished, but the knitting gods smiled upon me and I had just enough to get by. I was awfully happy to be wearing the mitts this morning as I was scraping frost off the windshield. New handknit, wool-mohair blend mittens=good day.
And what of the "meat" in my title? That, my friends, refers to what I will be dining upon tonight. My most wonderful boyfriend is taking me out this evening to Molly Malone's in Portsmouth for their annual wild game dinner. Yes, I am a carnivore. An omnivore actually, since veggies are good, too. And I haven't seen my sweetie since Saturday, so I might have to take a bite out of him when I see him.
Other good things: I remembered both my watch and wallet today. Yesterday I forgot them both at home.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Oh Warren Zevon Up in The Sky, I Do Enjoy Every Sandwich

The highlight of my workday is generally lunch, which I make myself and bring to work. My lunch is more or less a copy of whatever I make my girl for her lunch, recently minus candy surprises and with celery sticks instead because I am pseudo-Weight Watcher-ing myself to avoid massive autumn inflation of my physical being.
I eat by myself in my office. I already know what's in the damn lunch bag. And yet, I spend all morning thinking about eating lunch. I like food. I like lunch. I'm not so crazy about work these days.

Monday, November 08, 2004


Sometimes it's so hard to bite my tongue. I get tired of being patient and waiting for my day in court because I really want to know right now if I get to spend any of the friggin holidays with my kid or if I'm going to be held hostage to my stupid ex's warped sense of "fair" boiling down to an equation that the order of the days of the week mean more than holidays do. Not that he ever really cared about holidays or did much more than show up to celebrate anything. Holidays, anniversaries, any public recognition of any event being significant or meaningful didn't sit well with him. But how the hell was I to know that when I agreed to marry him six weeks after we met. It's all ancient history now, but if you ever find yourself in a similar position, just stop a moment and ask what all the rush is about.
I hate Mondays. I have a full day at school. Then I rush home to pick up the girl from the neighbor's house. We go home and deal with homework. I get dinner together early and have her fed and ready to go to girl scouts by 5:15. That gives me an hour and a half to hit the laundromat and put gas in the car, mail out bills, pick up whatever we need at the drugstore or any other little intown errand. We're home by 7:30 and now I'm ready to crawl into bed and hide under the covers, but the laundry needs to be put away. There's more homework to be dealt with. She has to call her father and I leave the room and pretend not to listen to the conversation, while I do just that because I get paranoid she likes him better hecause he buys her more stuff, even though he forgot to send her back with her lunchbox yet again this week.
I don't want her to be without him, but I want this all to be done. I want all my shit back from the house. I want my dog back. I want a reasonable schedule for the holidays. I want my cut of the house and the freedom to move my money around if I need to. Hell, while I'm at it, I want a job that pays me enough so I don't have to worry about having to ask for help. I want a day when I don't worry about someone else or if I'm good enough at the things I'm trying to do that I feel like I'm sucking at when I'm probably doing okay in reality.
Hmm, sounds like I need a drink and fixing one of those is something within my capabilities at the moment. I need a drink and to go to bed early and get up and do my yoga and try again tomorrow.

First Flurries

It's not that cloudy out. It's not really all that cold either. No matter that, there are still some very fine little flurries of snow falling from the sky.

One Very Good Thing

Wow. This is so brilliant I'm not sure whether to laugh, cry or just shake my head in amazement.

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Barbie Has All Those Careers, Why Not Kitty?

Feeling anxious lately? Well, then you'd better take the Hello Kitty Psychological Test. It's very soothing and lavendar and has zen-like English translations. I like where they ask about the volcano and whether it has or will "expose".

Friday, November 05, 2004

The Come Down

This has been a wild and wooly couple of weeks, what with the lunar eclipse, the Red Sox winning the World Series, switching back from Day Light Savings time and, of course, the elections. No wonder so many people around me seem to be in a daze or disjointed.
Being the empathic sponge that I am, it's been hard because I have spent the week surrounded by students going through the whole election experience for their first time. Emotions were running so high in the lead up and by Wednesday it seemed like so many had had the stuffing knocked out of them. They're just now starting to learn that life does go on and the world doesn't grind to an irreversible halt when "your" candidate loses. You just keep keeping on. You can talk about leaving the country and you can talk about how dumb people must be if they don't agree with your beliefs, but that's not going to do anyone any good.
I wasn't disappointed with the results of the state and local elections. My beef is that everyone concentrates so much on the presidential race and forgets that the people they send to congress and the senate also can make a big difference, as do the people they elect to state offices as well.
There are a lot of things we can't control in life. We can try but it's not always going to go our way. These days, when I'm feeling overwhelmed by all sort of circumstances in my life, I'm just trying to concentrate on controlling myself, my home and my health. I've been sort of back on the WW wagon, tracking points, drinking more water, eating healthier foods, taking walks and waking up early to do yoga and take as much advantage of the shrinking amount of daylight as possible. My house is basically clean. The kitchen is clean. There's food in it too. I try to make the most of the time I spend with the people I love. What else can you do, really? Thanksgiving is coming. Might as well start being thankful for all we have right now.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Yeah, You Go and Run Away

I'm getting sick of all these people saying they're going to move to another country if (since?) Bush wins (has won?). As someone who actually did that, all I can say is be prepared to stay away for a long time and for nothing to have gotten any better when you come back.
I graduated college in 1987 and was not a big fan of Reagan and the whole social climate of the time, so moving to Japan seemed like a good way to avoid it all. I came back in 1992 and Bush Sr. was in the White House. My desire to go to grad school had trumped my political emotions and then Clinton got elected that year anyway. I went back to Japan in 1996 and moved back to the US again in 2003, with yet another Bush in charge. I'm ready to stay put now even though I am not thrilled with the way the election seems to have gone.
Maybe I just picked the wrong country to run away to. Maybe if I had picked someplace more comfortable for me I could still sit back and be a smug expat. If you want to go ahead and flee, you do that. But don't go waiting for things to change to your liking while you're away avoiding it all. They most likely won't.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Ward 4 Polling Station, Dover, NH

I took this picture around 10:35 this morning, after I voted. The Back River Veteran's club is the Ward 4 polling station. There were also flyers up for a holiday craft fair that will be held there soon.


I went and voted. The voting itself went fine. They always have things running smoothly at the Ward 4 polling station. But I saw some disturbing sights on my way there and back.

Disturbing Sight #1; On my way to Dover along Route 108 I saw a clean-cut, middle-aged man angrily ripping Bush-Cheney signs out of the ground and flinging them into the field along the side of the road. The signs for local democratic candidates remained untouched.

Disturbing Sight #2; The nicely wooded paths along the brook in the middle of campus are plastered with Kerry-Edwards signs. I sure as hell hope the people who put them up there plan to take them down and dispose of them properly before it starts raining later today and they become a soggy mess. What a friggin waste of paper. And duct tape.

Disturbing Site #3: Every car in the faculty/staff parking lot plastered with two kinds of flyers explaining that students have the right to vote in town. That's nice, but students don't park there. Haven't you people learned how to read by the time you get to college? Didn't you notice while you were putting flyers under the wipers that every single car had a faculty/staff parking pass hanging off the rearview mirror. You really couldn't miss that.
I mourn all the trees that went to waste for so much of this bullshit.

Monday, November 01, 2004

Peace and Quiet On The Eve of The Election

I'm doing a good job so far of staying away from the tv tonight. I don't want to be a part of the final frenzy of the campaign media blitz. If I haven't done my homework by now and figured out the choices I want to make, then I've just been plain lazy. I'm not elated with the choices I have, but I'll make choices anyway. It seems negligent not to make a choice and participate when so much is at stake here. I can't in good conscience refuse to participate because my ideal (whatever that would be) is not presented as one of the options. It's my community and my country. It's my responsibility as a parent, a teacher and a citizen to participate.
I'm going to try to get to the polls tomorrow on my way to work. If it looks too crowded I'll have to go back later in the day, but I think it would help set my mind at rest to get in there early and vote without worrying about what the exit polls are saying.

It's Certainly A Monday

I brought my iPod (and even a Firewire cable to charge it up with) to work today. I left the headphones at home. Oh well.

Sunday, October 31, 2004

No More Sun

We shifted the clocks back an hour yesterday. It's now coming up on 4:30pm and already starting to get dark. I know my moods are heavily influenced by the season and amount of available daylight. I may have to start waking up early to go for a walk or at least to do yoga in the living room with the shades open to let the light in. At least I have the presence of mind to know that my sulkiness is seasonal and not necessarily caused by the circumstances of my life.

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Canvass This

I don't care what stats or True Majority Action quote to me. I hate door-to-door election canvassers. They do nothing that makes me feel encouraged to vote. Especially when the first one that visited here looked and sounded like he'd just taken a few fortifying bong hits before heading out to do his rounds. Strangers knocking on my door on a weekend afternoon do nothing but annoy me. I believe that I, and most other people around here, will go out and attend a candidate's speech or rally if we really want to hear what they have to say. Or we'll read the paper or check out the candidates' websites. Unless it's the candidate him or heself out tromping out in the rain on a Saturday afternoon, please stay the fuck off my property. Thank you.

Friday, October 29, 2004

Mystery Blah

It appears that I have been hit with a case of Mystery Blah. I suspect it's some type of post-ecliptic hit or just a simple case of running my motor too high for too long without noticing I was coming up on the wall. It started last night when the right half of my back started hurting. I've dealt with enough back pain now that I should realize that when it starts tensing up that means I need to chill out. Somehow I still manage to avoid that simple warning. I woke up this morning (and many times last night, actually) with my back aching and my head filled with something that felt like wads of cotton and a low buzzing noise. And I didn't even drink anything last night. I briefly considered cancelling my single class of the day, but decided if I was feeling okay enough to meet my sister for breakfast, I was okay enough to go teach for a couple of hours.
I came home and took some ibuprofen and a nap after class. That and a cup of chai seem to be helping somewhat. I should be working on another translation job, or even a grant proposal because I see there are grants available out there for people who teach less commonly taught languages. I'm sure landing grant money would impress the high muckety mucks at school but at the moment I am short of ideas and steam. Anyway, I should get to work a little so that I can feel I've accomplished something before I head out to take a walk and enjoy the last of the afternoon daylight. Once the clocks kick back an hour over the weekend it won't be all that long before it's pitch black by 5pm around here.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Do What You Love...

I'm still waiting for the money to follow. If the money doesn't follow does logic indicate that I'm not actually doing what I love, maybe I just think I am?
I don't need to get rich off this gig, but it would sure be nice to make enough money to actually cover my bills.
I like teaching and I feel like I'm serving a purpose in doing what I do, but how many years am I going to put into building a program without being properly compensated for it? At least two, obviously. Three even seems likely, but I don't know if I can afford three. I probably can't. That really sucks.

Red Sox... What More Can I Say?

The Red Sox did it. They won the World Series in a four game sweep. The 86 year long curse has been broken. My prediction is that there will be a lot more clean shaven men in the New England area this morning. So many guys vowed not to shave until the Sox lost or won it all.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Total Lunar Eclipse

Tomorrow night there will be a total lunar eclipse (NASA link). This is the other half of this month's pair of eclipses. The first was the solar eclipse on Oct 14. If you've felt like the last couple of weeks have been weird and that time and reality is all wavy and uneven, you might consider that part of the eclipses' effect. It might even explain the Red Sox beating the Yankees and getting to the World Series. You can never tell how it's going to go when we're under the effect of an eclipse or two.
The eclipse should be visible from anywhere on the east coast and through most of the mid-west as well. Check that NASA link above to see if and when it will be visible wherever you are.

Monday, October 25, 2004


I came into work today to see that some dumbass college student punk had plastered a Kerry-Edwards sticker on a poster for a study abroad program that I hung up outside my door last week. Defacing other people's property does not encourage support for their candidate. I'm voting that ticket anyway, and I'm still pissed off.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Hit Hard

Speaking of Japan, the country is getting its ass kicked by natural forces lately. They've been hit by at least 8 major typhoons this season. The one that passed through last week killed over 60 people. And starting yesterday, the northern part of the country (Niigata) has been rocked by severe earthquakes that have killed over 20.

The Man

During my first semester of grad school, I went to a lecture by Edward Seidensticker. There I was, all shiny and enthusiastic, ready to devote nearly all the hours of my days to the study of Japanese literature. (Why? Who the fuck knows why. At the time, it mattered to me.) And the man himself, the translator of The Tale of Genji and other classic works of Japanese lit, was going to be coming to campus where I would be able to hear the word and the wisdom direct from the source.
Jim and I sat in the darkened auditorium in great anticipation. Seidensticker was one of the gods of our realm and he was right there, up on the stage. And what did the great one do but bitch about Japan for two hours and at the end of the talk, during the question and answer session, said that he thought, after all the years he had put into it, that in the end it really hadn't been worth it to devote his life to studying Japan. I was speechless and astonished. He said that twelve years ago, and he said much the same 42 years ago, but he's still there. I understand in a way. I still struggle in a love-hate relationship with Japan because I went over thinking I was all grown up and it turned out it was where I learned to be an adult. I took on attitudes and beliefs that ultimately didn't work for me. It was such a great challenge and I tried so hard to ace it that I got too wrapped up in trying to figure out the rules and win the game. It became comfortable to be the outsider. I knew how to play that. But that moment in the auditorium had seared itself into my brain and made things that much easier when I realized it was time to let go and move on from Japan.
This brief trip down memory lane was brought to you by this
article about Seidensticker's latest book which I found via Robert Brady.


The weather has turned cold and I'm back to obsessing over what to knit or crochet. Since I have the most gorgeous model in the world living in-house, I figured I'd have her show you what I've made. I wrote about the pink, fluffy scarf before. The bottom picture is a shawl I crocheted out of Lion Thick & Quick Chenille (i think, don't have the skein wrapper anymore). You can't see the shawl very well in the picture, but with a smile like that, who cares?

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Trick or Treat

I went to a Halloween party this evening. It was my 9 year old nephew's party. I went with my daughter. I don't really hang out much with 9 year olds when she's not around. I didn't dress up for the party, but some of the kids had good costumes. One boy was dressed up as Austin Powers-- teeth, hair, suit and and all. Another boy was dressed as an old lady and he reminded me of the purse swinging character Ruth Buzzy used to play. There was apple bobbing and scary story telling and lots and lots of screaming.
I ate too much candy. I have a headache. I still have more work to do tomorrow. You're all thrilled I took the time to share, I know.

Friday, October 22, 2004

In My Garden

The weather has turned gray and blustery here. It already feels like November. It's moody weather with leaden skies and biting winds. The foliage is on the downhill side of the peak but still colorful and full enough to catch your eye. A few more weeks and the only green left around will be the pine trees.

The Horror

Fucking Hell! What is wrong with me? It must be all this work I'm doing lately is torturing my inner slacker who is in turn rebelling by causing me to unconsciously dress myself like something out of the friggin Official Preppy Handbook. Must be some traumatic flashback to high school (which, ugh I admit it, was prep school) when I was so swamped with school work and forced to conform to a dress code so I just ended up looking like someone dunked me in an LL Bean catalog or something. I'd make myself go back home and change but I have too much work to do.

Thursday, October 21, 2004


I did this today.
I'm not just being lazy. I still have a bunch of translation to do and he wrote about it better than I would anyway.

Love Him Or Hate Him

A student just told me that Michael Moore is speaking in Rye today. I found that kind of interesting since Rye is a rich little town that I imagine has quite a number of Bush/Cheney supporters and no obvious venue for the size of crowd I imagine Michael Moore will pull in. I checked out his site and found out that indeed he will be at the Rye Airfield, which is a skate park and BMX track, at 1pm this afternoon. No mention of the event on the Rye Airfield website, but it's located right off of Rt 1.
I'd go to check it out just because I was a fan of Michael Moore back in the TV Nation days. I still haven't seen Farenheit 9/11. I suppose I'm less of a fan since all the hype began. Anyway, I have to teach in the afternoon.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

A Moment

I had to go down to Portsmouth on an errand today and I was driving back to Dover around sunset. There was a partial rainbow to the north of the setting sun and some high, wispy clouds. Violet (by Hole) came on the radio. I love the song but I was happy to realize that I no longer identify with it. The sky was pretty. I liked the music. Even though there was the usual traffic on the General Sullivan Bridge, it only took me 20 minutes to get back home.
I've been working all night on a translation job about electronics. It's quiet since my girl is with her father and I'm here all alone. I've brought the lap top out to the kitchen table and turned on the gas fireplace because it's cold out tonight. It's not an entirely bad way to spend the evening, even if it's an evening of work following a full day of other work.

Monday, October 18, 2004


This leaves me rather speechless. (If you're under 18 don't look.)
ps: If you are at work or have children or anyone offended by nekkid parts milling about in the immediate vicinity, you'll probably want to check this out when you have a little more privacy.

Girl Power... I hope

The neighborhood gerbil expert came over today and informed me that she believes the three gerbils my girl got last week are all female.
I really, really hope she's right.

Sunday, October 17, 2004

The Art of War

It's been a long time since I read The Art of War by Sun Tzu or The Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto Musashi, but I wonder what they say about sitting back, shutting up and letting your opponent screw himself. I bet they advise it, probably just not using that same phrasing.

Saturday, October 16, 2004


There is a tv commercial for Friendly's that shows a woman getting ready for a romantic night out with her husband who, when faced with the puppy dog eyes of her young daughter, decides to tell her husband to cancel the babysitter so that the whole family can go out to Friendly's instead. I don't get it. Why can't they just plan to go have a family night out on another night? Friendly's is pretty cheap and she's putting on pearls and jewelry, so it looks like she and hubby could probably swing the $25 it would cost to take the three of them out for dinner there. And if they ordered right they'd get the FREE sundaes and not even have to pay for desert. The husband is on his way out the door to get the babysitter when the woman tells him about the change in plans. Is she afraid he's doing the sitter? Like I said, I don't get it.
The commerical came on the other night when my honey and I were at home kicking back and I started to say, "I don't know about this ad. It just makes me think..." And my absolutely wonderful and highly entertaining boyfriend finished my sentence with "that they aren't going to stay together?" Exactly. That is exactly what it makes me think.
Yes, dinner out with the child (or children, if you have more than one) is a fun family activitity, especially if you follow the rules. But for god's sake, Friendly's commercial woman, if your husband wants to get dressed up and take you out to a nice restaurant and you've actually managed to score a babysitter, don't throw it all away for a three-year old's puppy dog pout and a free sundae!

Friday, October 15, 2004

Spooky, Creepy, Crawly Songs

It's time to break out the Dan Blakeslee's Halloween Special cd. Yesterday I saw the flyers for his Oct. 15 show at The Press Room up on campus and was going to take one because they're always awesome, but I didn't because I didn't think it was cool to take one before the gig. Then I read the cover article of this week's Foster's Showcase and Dan had made a direct request in the article that people wait until after the show to take the flyers.
See, I do have a conscience!
If you are in Portsmouth tonight, it would be well worth your while to head down to The Press Room for the Dan Blakeslee Halloween Experience.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

The Leaves

The leaves are so beautiful now that it makes me wish I could stop time and freeze everything just the way it is. But would it still be beautiful if it was like this every day? Are things really beautiful because they change and fade and die? That's the idea behind the whole Japanese concept of mono no aware, the beauty of the ephemeral. Not sure about that and quite sure I don't feel like getting into it now. What I do know is that New Hampshire has had the right temperature conditions this year and the colors are brilliant. It makes me feel like I want to spontaneously combust. Foliage: Fall Foliage Report


Nine bodies found in group suicides in Japan
I don't really want to write about this, but I don't feel like I can let it pass by without comment.
A Japanese university professor is quoted in the article as saying, ""Young people today don't have a sense of reality about death. They are approaching it as an extension of a game in cyberworld." And he says suicide might be on the rise because young Japanese have had little exposure to the death of relatives, compared to previous generations. That sounds like bullshit to me. I don't think it's that they are approaching death as an extension of a game in cyberworld. I think they might lack proof that life has more to offer.

Monday, October 11, 2004

Let's Go For A Ride

There's a solar eclipse coming up on Wednesday night and another lunar one on October 28. Eclipses come in pairs and generally cause a lot of shit to happen. I try to just lay low and let them blow over.
He definitely has his biases, but I still think Eric Francis' essay about the eclipse gives some decent insight into the dynamics of eclipses. That is, of course, if you happen to believe in that sort of thing. If you don't, then it's just going to be another wild two weeks in the lead up to the election and everywhere you turn it will seem like people are going crazy.

Sunday, October 10, 2004


I already finished the fluffy pink scarf I started knitting yesterday afternoon. I swear the whole thing probably took only three or four hours total. It's sitting on my desk next to the computer, glistening in the light of the desklamp like the pelt of some furry pink mammal. If I had a camera, I'd throw a picture of it up here, but i don't.
I hope it gets cold again soon. Now if I could just get my black, leather jacket back from out of the house. I tried today, but it was no longer in the hall closet. hmmm...

In The Spirit of Halloween

If you want to see something scary, look at this.

Saturday, October 09, 2004


My favorite color right now is maple leaf red. Not the hockey team, but the real thing. The oranges and yellows are pretty, too, but the deep reds and maroons are so gorgeous they make my heart hurt.

If I Only Had A Remedy

I caught part of a show on the History Channel last night that addressed the topic of "high tech" sex. The whole idea of virtual sex just really doesn't interest me much. I mean, isn't one of the great things about sex that it's about as stripped down and real as you can get? Maybe if you're an astronaut on a long mission and billions of miles away from your honey virtual sex might be the next best thing to being there. But I can't imagine it ever being better than the real thing.
Anyway, back to the program. It being the History Channel and all, they also included some information about all the Victorian era inventions intended to quell sexual urges. There seemed to be a lot of innovative variations on the chastity belt concept. There were also some scary, James Bond-ish modern inventions designed to mess up a rapist bad. Things with razors and needles all tucked away inside. Scary.
One interesting fact that I learned was that vibrators were invented in the 1880s as a labor saving device for doctors, who used to treat hysteria by digitally massaging their patients to "hysterical paroxysm". Apparently it wasn't ok for women to take care of this on their own because masturbation was a big no-no. They say the treatments weren't regarded as sexual experiences. Dr. Feelgood, I presume.
The folks at Good Vibrations have an online Antique Vibrator Museum.
All this talk has me thinking about The Black Crowes song Remedy. It's going to be stuck in my head for the rest of the day.
I need a remedy, huh yeah
For what is ailing me, you see
I need a remedy
For what is ailing me
I need a remedy, yeah
For what is ailing me
(nice sexy rock scream here)
If I only had a remedy
You see, I'll find it, I'll find it
You see baby, I want it
You see I'll find it, I'll find it
Oh, I really want, really want it
You see I need it
Oh I really want to tell you all about it
I want to sing and scream
Oh, I feel I just want to shout about it
I need a remedy, remedy, remedy, remedy, remedy, remedy, remedy, remedy yeah.
Remedy that's what I need
Waaaaah, I see it.

The Victorians definitely would have locked up Chris Robinson in a mental institution and in one of their male chastity contraptions.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

My Name is Pam and I'm a Yarnaholic

I have already spent $45 this month on yarn this month and that's with two projects (a crocheted shawl and a knit poncho) currently underway that are nowhere near completion. The other night I started making mittens because I felt the urge to do so. Today I left work and drove down to Michaels to buy more yarn for the poncho and picked up three more skeins of something else (Paton's twister) because it looked like it would make a cute scarf.

Crossing Paths Again

It's funny how people turn up in unexpected places. Six or seven years ago when I was living and teaching in Japan I came across a site called Real Japan created by a Japanese-American high school student in Texas. The site was interesting, funny and cool looking. I wrote to the creator and asked her if she would mind if I used the site in a class I was teaching called "Japanese Society in English". She agreed and said she was flattered that her site would be used in a college class. We emailed back and forth a few times, but that came to an end, as those things tend to do.
This morning I was reading through the huge back log of posts I have for the Honyaku mailing list for translators working between Japanese and English. I saw a familiar name on a post by a translator new to the job. It turns out to be the same Alisa from the Real Japan site. Now I'm going to go to class and teach my current students about her site, too.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

First Frost

Last night (this morning?) was the first frost of the season. Driving to work along 108 through Madbury this morning I could see stretches of frosted over grasses, stalks and leaves in the areas the sun hadn't reached yet. It's supposed to get into the low 60s today, but when I checked the thermometer out on the porch this morning it read 35 degrees. That's chilly.
I started knitting myself some mittens with yarn I have left over from all the caps I knitted as holiday presents last year. I have white, black and a weird mauve-y pink color. I'll probably make striped mittens. I definitely need something because my hands were numb by the time I made it from the parking lot to the office this morning.
Wow, there's gurgling water noises coming through the pipes in the office, which I guess means the heat has been turned on. No actual heat coming out of there yet and the overhead air vents are still pumping, but a little heat in the office would be nice.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Mixed Up Media

I just noticed after walking by yet another flyer for the Feminist Action League's on campus demonstration protesting hate speech and violence against women that was sparked by a death threat against a female columnist in the campus paper that the large graphic image they are using on the flyer is in the style of Japanese manga. Actually, it looks like an image that was taken from a manga. I guess the protest organizers don't realize that you'd have to search pretty long and hard to find a mass media genre more accepting of misogyny. I spent years commuting on trains in Japanese cities watching men read manga full of big-breasted, tiny-waisted, full-hipped, doe-eyed women getting fucked in just about anyway you can imagine, often with the dialogue bubbles full of protest. (I know, it's not nice to read over people's shoulders, but sometimes there's not much else to do on a train.) I guess whoever made the flyer just thought the image of a screaming woman wearing a collar looked cool and tough.

Monday, October 04, 2004

Go Fug Yourself

My newest guilty pleasure and the only one I'll write about in public.
I blame it all on Shannon.
Actually, I'm not sure I have any other truly guilty pleasures. Well, there's the ice cream, and the trashy tabloids in the check out line, and the tendency to be a product junkie while pretending I'm just not that kind of girl. Ehhh, let's just stop this list right here and now.

Friday, October 01, 2004

It's All Good

Do you ever have those days when everything is pretty much the same as it was yesterday, but it all seems excellent? Well, I'm having one today. Maybe it was just that I had more caffeine than usual this morning, but the sun is out and everything looks beautiful. I thought I might have to work tonight, but I don't. I've got one 2-hour class to teach today and I'm done until Monday. When I get out of here I'm going home to help my honey finish working on the soon-to-be-finished, unfinished furniture. Tomorrow is Apple Harvest Day and the weather is supposed to be good.
I'm not saying everything is perfect, but right now it's all good.

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Sure, Why not?

What Is Your Animal Personality?

brought to you by Quizilla
Now I'm going to have Warren Zevon's Werewolves of London stuck in my head all day.
And why do the quiz makers have such a hard time with basic spelling? "Your Indepentent"? Come on!

Wednesday, September 29, 2004


What the hell was I thinking when I bought that package of mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cups the other day? That I wasn't going to feel compelled to keep sneaking into the cupboard to get just one more? Yeah, right. I'm good, but I'm not that good.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Funniest Thing I Heard Today

The funniest thing I heard today was at a faculty meeting during a discussion about whether or not it's really acceptable that the university allows students to take American Sign Language to fulfill their foreign language requirement. (Real ripe fodder for laughter, huh? I know what you're thinking, "Damn academics and their lameass sense of humor)
Well, I thought it was pretty funny when an Italian instructor proposed to settle the matter with a duel of gestures between an Italian teacher and an ASL teacher to see who was more expressive. I'd definitely put my money on the Italian teacher.

Now They Know I'm Nuts!

This afternoon I let my elementary level class in on my language learning secret: practice thinking in the target language throughout the day. I told them I used to do it all the time when I was a student. (Still do, actually, but by habit, not as a conscious act.) I recommended they don't do it aloud, unless they want people to think they're nuts, but I swear it works.
They're just learning how to form very simple sentences, but they know some vocab now and can identify stuff and say if it's this or that or who it belongs to. They all laughed when I told them it's a great way to practice, but I hope they give it a try.


Where the hell has all my sass gone in this blog? I think I used to have more attitude and now I'm all soccer mom-ish about life. Yesterday I found myself actually excited about being able to squeeze in a trip to the grocery store while my girl was at her girl scouts meeting. That's skidding into seriously pathetic territory with that one.
Maybe since I took the big leap and moved out I have more to do and less to bitch about. Of course, I can always bitch about having so much to do, but usually I'm too busy to do more than mutter about it to myself while people clear out of my way as I dash to my car so I can get where I need to be next.
And then I do stupid stuff like stay up too late looking at yarn auctions on eBay and reading novels (god, isn't my life thrilling? Don't you wish you had this much excitement on a daily basis?) and get woken up before my alarm goes off by the girl's chirping tree frog, which I really think I need to make her keep out on the porch because that damn thing is loud.
Anyway, it's rainy and fall-ish out today. I like how red leaves look against a gray sky. There was a thread on the translators mailing list about how to translate "snuggle" into Japanese. I don't care how you'd translate it, but this would sure be a good day to snuggle, watch a stupid movie and pretend I didn't have 4 million things to do everyday.

Monday, September 27, 2004

Online Shopping

Back in the day, when I lived in Japan, I used to shop online or even by mail order catalog because that was the only way I could get clothing that was cut to fit me. Even if I found my size in Japan, the cut of the clothes never looked right on me. Now I live back here in the States and there are plenty of places to shop nearby, I just have no time to do so, so I'm back to buying clothes online again.
It's still pretty warm in the daytime here, but I know the cold weather will be here soon enough. I am dying to get started on knitting something for myself, a sweater or maybe a vest. My boyfriend got me this book that I had been wanting since I first saw it in the yarn store about a year ago. It has basic blueprints for all kinds of patterns in any size you want, using any yarn you like. Now I just need to finish at least one of the two projects I am already currently working on before I start something new.

Sunday, September 26, 2004

Grave Yarns

This morning the girl and I attended "Grave Yarns: The Cemetery Revealed", a Dover Historical Society Heritage Walking Tour. Last year the group put on a "Factory Revealed" tour of the Cocheco Mill in downtown Dover. I regretted missing that and was determined to catch this year's production.
The tour took place in the Pine Hill Cemetery on Central Ave in Dover. A tour guide lead our group on a 90 minute walk through the cemetery with 20 scenes depicting notable and notorious figures in Dover's history. The entire cast did a great job and a few of the actors really stood out. I thought Darryl Cauchon playing the miserly Michael Reade, Jr. and Joyce Braungart as Christine Otis Baker were particularly engaging.
We learned about the history of the cemetery, from it's earliest beginnings as a 15th century Indian burial ground to the evolution of the cemetery park concept, and about the changes in gravestone design and art and how they reflected the beliefs of society in their own time. The day was gorgeous and highlighted the beauty of the spot. There were just enough fallen crimson leaves to remind you that even though the days are warm, fall has definitely arrived.
One point that came very clear to me was how easily death visited the people of those times. Nearly every character depicted had suffered the loss of a child, a spouse or both. I suppose that was just the way things were then, but it made me think graveyards were likely much more a part of daily life than they are now. The tour guide told us a story about one mausoleum in the cemetery where a widower, a school teacher, came and read to his deceased wife in the mausoleum he had built for her every day until his own death six years later. Another striking site is the graves of Henry Law and his former fiancee Cordelia Teatherly Griffin. Law was a successful business man who was very generous in his donations to the recreation facilities of the city, but he broke off an engagement with his fiancee, a young widow, when she refused to give up a puppy she had acquired. She died broken hearted several years later at her own hand and on top of her monument, located right next to Law's, is a statue of a weeping young woman with her back turned to her former fiance for eternity.
I am really looking forward to seeing what other tours the DHS develops and I'm even a little interested in maybe taking part in one in the future. It looked like a lot of fun and a great way to learn more about the history of the town.

Laundramat Review

One of the problems with this single mom stuff is that I don't have my own washer and dryer anymore. This means I end up going to the laundromat once a week, since I don't have enough clothes to go any longer between washes than that anyway.
I have been going to the place on Broadway and think it's nice, but this morning I realized there is a Laundramat behind Clearly Cleaners on Central Ave, so I decided to check it out. I didn't like it. It was kind of dirty. The places was crowded and the aisles are narrow so you can't get by someone else and their stuff without bumping into them and/or asking them to let you through. The equipment itself is fine, but there wasn't any attendant working there so there were dryer sheets and other junk lying all over the floor and they didn't seem to have enough of those wheeled carts or folding table space to accomodate eveyone. My laundry didn't even dry all the way but I folded it up and left anyway. I couldn't stand spending anymore of this gorgeous day inside that place.

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Fall Gardening

I didn't get a chance to do much gardening this spring or summer due to the turbulence in my personal life and the fact that I spent the summer living in an apartment without a yard of my own. I have lived in this apartment (but it feels like a house) for over a whole month now and a few weeks ago I started planting a fall garden in the beds around the patio in the backyard. I added to the icicle pansies that were already there and also put in some mums, asters, a couple of pretty fall plants I had never heard of before and can't remember the name of and a decorative kale. I just took another trip to the nursery today and got another kale, a sedum-stonecrop cross and a different kind of flowering fall plant that I don't know the name of. I'm going to go add the new additions and then sit there and read a book. I've been dreaming of doing that all week and I believe it's actually going to happen very soon. I know flowers don't do much and you can't usually eat them, but they make me happy.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Rewards of Blogging?

Did you ever wonder who in the hell those people are who find love on the internet from their blogs?
Well, you're reading one right now.
I happened to find his blog. He happened to know about mine, too. He happened to live around here. We happened to have a lot of common interests and it all just happened to click. :)
It didn't happen exactly all as easy as that, but that's the executive summary for you.

Fall Rocks

It just doesn't get much better than Fall (it deserves the capital letter) in New England. The weather has, for the most part, been gorgeous, warms days and cool nights. The leaves are starting to turn. Apples are coming into season. I got to go to the Rochester Fair with my honey. My fall garden is looking pretty good. I need to start experimenting with apple crisp recipes soon. It feels like I rarely have a free moment these days, but all in all, things are all right.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Hold the Presses!

I am wearing a teacher skirt today.
What, you may ask, is a teacher skirt?
It's a long skirt, made of neither denim nor khaki material, that makes me feel like I look like a teacher when I wear it. I'm not sure what the problem is, but everyone in any official capacity on this campus seems to ask me if I am a grad student. I'm a teacher, dammit! I think I must dress too casually, but really, how could you tell around here?
My new shoes from Zappos arrived yesterday, so now I finally have shoes that aren't sandals to wear with skirts. It is the first day of fall, after all. I can't wear sandals forever. Zappos, by the way, is quite awesome. Not only did they have shoes that I liked on sale and free shipping, they upgraded my shipping for free so I ordered the shoes on Sunday evening and they were waiting on my porch when I got home from work on Tuesday afternoon. That's service!!

I Didn't

Some twisted turn of events has made "staying together for the kids" the top search term for this blog. That's odd since I have only one kid and I didn't stay together with her father "for her sake".
I tried for a lot of years, but it didn't work. There are times when you just have to admit that not everything can be saved and move along. The only one who knows when that is true for you is you.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

The Error of My Ways

Now I see the error of my ways. Transparencies are not meant to go through laser printers.
And I got kicked out of the blood drive today for bleeding too slow. Can I go home yet?

Sunday, September 19, 2004


I used to spend a lot of time talking on the telephone, but that was a long time ago, probably before I moved to Japan for the first time and had to pay outrageous rates. Oddly enough, I spent three hours on the phone today for three separate phone calls.
The first one came in at 8:30 this morning and was my friend Ivan calling from Tokyo. I've known Ivan for about 20 years. We first met in Japanese class in Boulder. We used to study for tests together. Actually. I'd study with him in return for him cooking for me. As it turns out, he did end up becoming a chef. The man knows his food. I spoil his fun by not caring that the Red Sox suck and get pounded by the Yankees. We burned up a quick hour, even though as soon as I heard his voice the first thing I said to him was "you're not really calling me at 8:30 on a Sunday morning are you?" Didn't phase him in the least.
Later in the afternoon my girl wanted to find out if her cousin wanted to come over and play tennis with her at the school, which necessitated a call to my sister. My nephew couldn't come over to play, but thanks to the wonders of wireless technology I spent an hour on the phone with sis while she ran around doing her farm chores and feeding some people's cat.
After that I thought about calling my mom, but was sort of phoned out so I thought I'd save that for another day. Well, mom had different ideas because she called in later in the afternoon and that was another hour on the line. She said several things I really liked, as she often does these days. One was that it's really okay to let other people know when you're going through rough times and that by letting them know, you're giving them the opportunity to show their best sides. I don't recall that being her motto when I was growing up. I think we were all in more of a "hide your problems" mode of operation. Asking people for help is one of the hardest things to do. Offering help is easy. I never mind helping out when I can. Now I'm finally learning how to let people know when I'm struggling and could use a hand.
Part of it feels like I'm still in the process of re-acculturating. In Japan, if you have a problem, you put a lid on it (kusai mono ni futa). I'm not Japanese but I lived there for so many years that a lot of those modes of being became my own. At times I feel like I am waking up from a very long and strange dream.


Punk Mama
You're a punk rock mommy! DIY is probably your
motto, because you're a punk mama at heart.
Your kids are getting your independent spirit
and guts, and learning to solve problems
themselves. You love it when they show their
independence, even when it's breaking your

What kind of a freaky mother are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Saturday, September 18, 2004

Sears Haters Unite!

It's so wrong, and yet so very right, that "I hate Sears" is the most popular search term bringing people to this blog. I did finally resolve my dispute with Sears, but it took a lot of time and effort to do it. With the exception of a really good deal on a garden hose, I have not bought anything from them since the incident. I still hate them. Just thought anyone else out there currently battling them might want to know that.

Friday, September 17, 2004

Rant (Just skip it if you're not in the mood, ok?)

Why the hell am I sitting here in my pajamas surfing blogs and reading about how Johnny and Joey Ramone hated each other because Johnny stole Joey's girl and never apologized for it, and Tony Pierce rant about how Avril's really just another pop tart (well, duh!)?
I have work to do, classes to plan, dozens of pages of translated mundane and bullshit emails to drop off at the lawyer's, probably dozens of more answers to questions in the interrogatories to write, a shower to take. Can't I just go back and hide under the covers a little longer? Guess not.
All I can do is keep telling myself-- this is temporary. I will do it and be done with it. So, if I have to spend the next week flat out writing the story of my miserable marriage and digging up old tax records, pay stubs and other detritus to make my point, then I will. If I want an audience for all the crappy details of that story, there may be no better one that than the court. I didn't want to play hardball, but when that ball gets hits into my court I sure as hell am going to hit back as hard as I can.
OK. I feel a little better now. Off to the shower and the rest of the day. Hope you have a good one!

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

A Rose By Any Other Name

Came into work this week and saw that the building directory and the sign on my office door have my name spelled correctly and the correct names of the current faculty in our office. That's nice. Last year my name was misspelled on the directory and there it stayed all year.
I've been thinking about what I'm going to do with my name after the divorce is final. Right now it pegs me as an ethnicity I am not, which sort of lends me a false credibility in my work. Of course, the name itself has absolutely no bearing whatsoever on whether or not I can do what I do. I've got the skills I need because I've spent the last 20 years of my life developing those skills. But still, I know sounding the part can impress some people more than actual ability. It kind of sucks that almost no one can pronounce it correctly, though.
Going back to my maiden name could also have advantages. My family has been in the area for a long time and that name has the ability to open certain doors for me. I often find myself being introduced as So and so's daughter anyway. Going back to my maiden name would feel comfortable, but I wonder how my daughter would feel about it. It might make her feel like I'm distancing myself from her and what is part of her heritage.
And what happens when I get remarried? (ooh, look at how I just wrote when and not if. How brazen of me.) Do I change it yet again? It's a pain in the butt to legally change your name. A lot of running around is involved. It's something I'm thinking about, anyway.