Sunday, April 30, 2006

The Best Things In Life Are Free

Dear Blog,

Today was an awesome day. We went to a Royals game for free (they lost horribly), we went to Worlds of Fun for what felt like free on our season passes (twenty-five cent cotton candy!), and then I got my weekly free rental from Blockbuster online.


It just feels good.

Remember when I had like, absolutely no money and I never got anything for free? Me too.

I suppose being an "adult" and not a "poor grad student" does have its perks. Although… don't call me that to my face. I'm still in denial.

Yours Forever Young,

End Blog.

Friday, April 28, 2006

LVC Moved My Greenhouses

Okay, they weren't mine. But I spent a summer watering those damn things and they just went and moved them across the street without asking me. I suppose you no longer need a key to Garber to water them. What a bummer. It was cool to have a key to the science building for a few months.

Man, did you read these last two posts? I'm such a freakin' nerd.

I even had a conversation today about which would get you less wet: running or walking through the ran. At least I wasn't the one who had read a scientific study about it. You know what they found? They're equal. Although... the conversation afterwards on how they managed to measure it and the actual set up was much more nerdy. And what about factors like how hard the rain falls? Is there an optimum speed for you to move? Do they take into account water splashing up from running?

It all depends on distance, speed of movement, rate of rainfall, and time. I mean, running should cause you to intersect more raindrops per second than walking, but will take less time to cover a certain distance. So, less raindrops per second but more time in the rain, or more raindrops per second and less time in the rain? I still think that there are too many variables to definitively determine the answer to this question. This was the consensus all around.

But at least everyone else I work with is just as nerdy as I am. It's nice to fit into a group. I'm way more appreciated now than I ever was at Target. No one there seemed to care about science. Or, for that matter... logic.

End Blog.

(I looked this up online since I'm a such a good nerd. If it's a light rain, you're only going to be 10-16% drier if you run rather than walk. However, in heavy rain, you'll stay somewhere between 30-50% drier if you run. So, the greatest benefit occurs when you are running in heavy windy and rainy conditions. Which makes sense because you're more likely to run then anyway. I think humans knew this innately. I only run in heavy rain... when someone's chasing me. End Blog II.)

Skills. Mad Skills.

I totally rocked my cell ID test today. Skin particles, human body, head and pubic hair, animal hair, spermatozoa and epithelial cells. Go me. I identified them all.

And I'd like to point out that I still find it completely amazing that you can spit on a paper towel, let it dry, package it up as evidence, and I'm still able to recover your epithelial cells from it.

At first I was all… what the hell is this? It was a dry paper towel with no apparent evidentiary value whatsoever. Under the stereoscope it looked boring and ordinary. But you could tell that it had at one point been wet in a spot. So, I looked at it under an alternate light source and got zilch. No fluorescence. Totally unremarkable. Unable to figure out anything else I could possibly do, I decided to make a smear of that area of the paper towel on a clean slide… and sure enough… epithelials. He totally spit on a paper towel as part of my competency test.

I was so proud of myself that I figured it out.

I hope that my job always keeps me this fascinated. I know, I know… I have such a simple mind – captivated by spit.

End Blog.


I was in the shower this morning looking forward to lunch today and I figured something out - A plan for my future should something go horribly wrong. If I ever become homeless, I think I'd live behind a Chipotle and eat out of their dumpsters. Because, just think about how many people throw food away there...

Man, that'd be heaven. Free, slightly used Chipotle.

Well, except for the homeless and dumpster part. But I think I could get over the slightly used bit, 'cause... aren't we all? *pets half eaten burrito* It's okay. Mommy's here.

End Blog.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Today's Annoyances

I wrote a blog and stupid Microsoft Word shut down on me. I lost it. Auto recover recovered something else I had opened, but not my blog entry. And it was a lovely one, too. It was about how I rocked at work and totally impressed my boss. It even had a part in there about how I still had my fingers and the frostbite didn't take them. Alas, you'll never know the details because I don't feel like writing all of it again. Instead, I will complain. I know, I can hear you all screaming, "YAY!!" right this very minute.

Stupid Word. It pisses me off like that regularly.

Meanwhile, in the world of online rentals… Blockbuster screwed up. I decided that I wanted to see the old 70s series, Wonder Woman, with Lynda Carter and I rented season one. Unfortunately, they sent disc two before disc one. I'm saddened, but figure that it's okay… and I'm just going to watch them out of order because I've been looking forward to it. I open the disc to find that the sleeve is labeled disc two, but disc three is actually inside. Way to go quality control!

I sigh. Fine. No big deal, I'm already watching them out of order.

So, I put it in and begin watching a fantastic adventure where Captain What's-His-Face and Diana are on their way to Argentina to recover some awesome formula from a scientist before the Nazi's get it. (She's fluent in Spanish and is going as a translator although everyone speaks English like, the entire time.) Before I hit the 40 minute mark of the episode, the disc craps out. I can't watch a scene without it stuttering and I can't just skip over the bad parts. It completely won't play and I can't even clean it off.

"That operation is currently prohibited." Annoying.


All I wanted was a little seventies cheesy super hero action. Is that too much to ask for? It seems so.

Harrrumph. *pouts and crosses arms*

So, I decide that I'll watch the other movie I have rented. Seven. Because I haven't seen it forever and I have a newfound respect for detective/crime movies. Plus, I really wanted to see the scene where they bust into that apartment and see all the car air fresheners hanging from the ceiling. You know, the ones shaped like trees. Yeah, apparently there was a crime scene like that in Kansas City a while back. People at work were telling me about it last Friday. Car air fresheners and Fabreeze don't really cover up the smell of rotting people, by the way.

Anyway… that movie didn't disappoint. But, there was a scene that irked me. Brad Pitt buttons his shirt from the bottom button up. Do lots of people do that? I start at the top and go down. It bothered me.

Which way do you button your shirt? And c'mon Brad… learn to tie a freakin' tie already. Be a man. Even I know how to do that.

You know what? Maybe it's just Brad Pitt. Man, that guy totally irks me. Oh, and why would you leave Jennifer Aniston anyway? For Angelina? Sure, she's hot and has a crazy sexy vibe, but long term? Jenny's the way to go.

One thing I know for sure - Brad Pitt is no Jake Gyllenhaal. For sure. And Jake… I'd prefer it if you not button your shirt at all. Thanks.

End Blog.

(Seriously, how does Jake keep slipping in here? And how many more times can I mention him before you stop reading?)

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Voluntary Frostbite

Today we filed a bunch of older case evidence in the walk-in freezer. And when I say a bunch, I mean a whole bunch. Case files are numbered by year and filed chronologically. There are roughly close to a bajillion already in the freezer. Roughly.

It takes a few minutes to find the right location for some of these items to be filed, and since I'm really SUPER great with numbers (note the sarcasm), it takes me a little longer. I gotta double check it so it gets into its proper home. So, we were in there a while. (And by we, I mean me and my boss because we're still the only people in trace right now.)

So…picture me standing in a huge freezer, looking at numbers while my mind slows down because of the cold. And then my fingers stop working because latex gloves offer no protection from arctic, frigid temperatures. Then, eventually, the only thing the fingers can feel is pain.

I had to take two breaks to warm up and then get back at it. You know, just a few minutes to thaw out before subjecting my poor fingers to that torture again.

Now, I know you're probably thinking "You're such a wimp, Nikki. It's just a freezer. It's not that cold." If you are thinking this, well, then you would be wrong. The walk in freezer is -23 degrees Celsius. And for some crazy reason, it's even kinda windy in there. (For those of you unfamiliar with the conversion, that's -9.4 degrees Fahrenheit.)

It's freakin' cold. It's worse than shoving your bare hands in a pile of snow for three minutes.

I think I got frostbite at work in the middle of April. Tomorrow all my fingers are going to fall off and I'll never be able to type a blog again.

End Blog. (Probably forever.)

Monday, April 24, 2006

Trace Section Supervisor

I was the supervisor of everyone in the trace section for an hour today. I supervised… well… me. Because I was the only one working in my section. I suppose that's the only way that the least senior member of the team can be a supervisor though.

I thought about running amok, but didn't want to have to blame myself. So, I settled for turning up the radio really loud and muttering to myself, "Amok, amok, amok!" That felt pretty good. Then I finished the case I was working on and sent an analysis submission to the DNA section.

I'm a good, responsible Trace Section Supervisor.

That sounds super cool, doesn't it, Jake Gyllenhaal?

*bats eyelashes*

End Blog.

PS - "Amok, amok, amok!" Points will be awarded to whoever names the movie this quote comes from and the actress that said it!

Sunday, April 23, 2006

I Wish I Could Quit You

Jake Gyllenhaal is the perfect man.

I need not say more.

End Blog.

Friday, April 21, 2006


The only people that are going to be in the trace section at work on Monday are me and my boss. Everyone else will be attending a class of some sort... or their contract ran out.

Guess I couldn't ask for more attention, eh?

I have found out several things recently:
1. I'm going to crime scene school for three weeks in early June.
2. I'm going to Chicago for a polarized light microscope training class the 17-21 of July.
3. We're most likely having an advanced polarized light microscope training session sometime in October, assuming we get funding for it. It'll be in Jefferson City, MO.

Yay! Learning for free. What a concept.

And getting sent to Chicago? For free? How cool is that?

I couldn't love my job more. Well, I could if they paid me more, gave me lots of vacations, and let me sleep in late. But... I looked for that job. It doesn't exist.

And the lotto's just so gosh darn hard to win.

End Blog.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Tragic April

Today in history in 1999, the deadliest school shooting in US history occured at Columbine High School in Littleton, CO. 13 people were killed and 23 were wounded.

Do you remember where you were?

I came home from school and turned on the TV and the news was on every channel. It was senior year. It was a Tuesday. I remember it well.

Come to think of it, April is a pretty tragic month:

Pope John Paul II's death happened on the 2nd.
MLK Jr. was assassinated on April 4th.
Abraham Lincoln was assassinated on April 14th.
The Titanic sank the 14-15th.
The San Francisco earthquake of 1906 happened on the 18th.
LA rioted after the Rodney King verdict on the 19th in '92 and in '93 on that day the Branch Davidian siege in Waco, TX came to its bloody end. Then, on the same day in '95 there was a bombing in Oklahoma City at the Alfred P Murrah Federal Building.
Shakespeare died on April 23rd.
Oh, and Chernobyl's nuclear "accident" took place on the 26th.

Although, I suppose the most tragic of all the things that happened in April was probably the birth of my sister on the 22nd. Haha! Wooo! Zing!

That was an excellent build-up and punchline.

I'm awesome. I should probably link her to this, eh?

End Blog.

This was done with much love. Really.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

The Job

My entire morning was spent editing and updating my case reports after they had been rejected by peer review. Which, I totally expected to happen because I didn’t have a whole lot of instruction on how to report results. I think that’s mostly going to be a trial and error thing since I don’t know all the usual ways the place does things.

Like, you can’t say that you sent something to DNA for further analysis. You have to state that it was sent to “the DNA section” for further analysis. Like I would know such a thing. So, most of my reports had to be slightly modified today before they could be approved for release. Not that there was anything wrong with what I had done, it was just regarding proper wording and sentence structure issues.

Can you imagine? Like I ever have issue with sentence structure. I mean, everything I write is always a complete sentence. Totally. All the time. Completely complete.

So, that was a good three hours of my day. I’m not sure how it could have possibly taken so long… but it did. Then I did some more casework and I have two more reports to write now. Hopefully they’ll be approved the first time. We shall see how that goes now that I know a few more of the rules.

Oh, and get this – they’re letting me work parts of a homicide. Isn’t that insanity? I’ve been there for a month and a half and they’re giving me evidence from a homicide.

People in DNA (oh, sorry, “the DNA section”) don’t touch actual casework for 9-12 months. People in the fingerprint section don’t touch casework for a full year. I, however, got thrown right onto a homicide. I mean… sure, I’ve had the training that I needed for it… but still…

It’s a little intimidating. But also really awesome. Turns out, I’m super happy I’m in trace and not fingerprints. Way to go, KCPD.

End Blog.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006


Imagine my surprise this morning as I was driving to work when I saw that the 14 cent "Wednesday Price Hike" came a day early. Eyes bugged out, jaw dropped… they fooled me!

Damn them. Not because I’m surprised to see gas at $2.73 a gallon. I just thought I had them finally figured out since they had consistently done it on a Wednesday for so many weeks in a row.

I think they must read my blog.

I’m certain I’m that popular.

And in that case… I’m going to start a boycott someday when you least expect it. You’ll see, Big Oil! You haven’t seen the last of me!!

End Blog.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Happy Birthday Savvy!

My dog is turning 5 today. The big 3-5 in puppy years. Better start looking for those grey hairs...

Luckily, she got to spend time on the ranch to celebrate. I hope that she's happy and that Mom and Dad didn't forget to do something special for her. Because... more reason for me to steal her away in the darkness of night if they have.

She may live with them... but she's still my dog.

Savvy, I'll be there at the end of May. If you decide you'd like to come home with me, pack up your stuff. You're always welcome. =)

End Blog.

Sunday, April 16, 2006


I have lots of Madonna music. I won't go so far as to say that I have every song she's ever made, but I do have some that weren't released on an album and I have the plethora of songs from movie soundtracks. Currently, my winamp has 16 hours, 39 minutes and 37 seconds of Madonna goodness on it. That's 207 songs, some of which are repeats because they are live performances or remixes. Also, there are the cover songs she's done (Fever, American Pie, etc.) and the ones she's translated into Spanish (Veras, Lo Que Siente La Mujer). This is also not counting music from Evita, or Santa Baby - as far as I know, the only Christmas song she's covered.

In short, I love Madonna. So, here are some interactive goodies for you to play with. Only 122 days until her next birthday!

My results:

Which Madonna Personality are you? Take the Quiz.


Take the Which Madonna video Are You? Quiz

You're more intelligent than 90% of the people you interact with. Academic and witty, you are an avid reader and thinker. You are artsy-fartsy and creative, and you have been or will be deeply inspired by the book, "Memoirs of a Geisha" and are fascinated with oriental culture and history. Many write you off as a geek, but don't listen to them. You have trouble relating to the "club-scene" and want a partner who's interested by the same topics as you. And remember: love is all we need.


What Madonna Song are You?

You are POWER OF GOODBYE..... You're sappy and sentimental, but very observant of human behavior. You're logical, but your heart takes over your head sometimes. Take some advice, go have a holiday and cheer up!
Take this quiz!

Go ahead. You know you want to. Deep down everyone loves Madonna.

End Blog.

Happy Jesus is a Zombie Day!

Many people don't really think about it, but the best thing about claiming Jesus is a Zombie is that all the Christians can't get mad at me. Because it's exactly what they believe. See?

Romans 14:9
For to this end Christ both died, and rose, and revived, that he might be Lord both of the dead and living.

Matthew 28:7
And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead...

Wow, that was the only time quoting The Bible has ever been fun.

Don't worry. Jesus was probably a great guy. I'm sure he thinks it's funny too.

End Blog.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Nerds Are Cool

Overall, you scored as follows:

11% scored higher (more nerdy) and 89% scored lower (less nerdy).

Your nerdiness is:
High-Level Nerd.
You are definitely MIT material, apply now!

I am nerdier than 89% of all people. Are you nerdier? Click here to find out!

Dude... it's a multiple choice test. We know how much I can't resist them. *pushes up glasses*

Oh, and the only reason I didn't score higher is because I don't personally get science magazines. But... work does! So, I get to read 4 different ones. And because Blackwell is the very first name in the mailbox system there... I get to read them all before anyone else upstairs.

Yeah! *Embraces Nerdiness*

End Blog.

Finding Trouble

I went out and shot some pool tonight, in addition to standing around and watching other people shoot pool… which, worked as I’d hoped and I was invited to play with some other people. I met a seemingly nice guy, his best friend, and his sister and played a few games with the three of them.

But, he’s not what I’m looking for. And he made a comment about wanting to move to San Francisco some day, but not caring for the large gay population in the area. He also dissed Janis Joplin. The only comment he apologized for was the one about Janis Joplin. You know, the one I didn’t care about.

There’s definitely a difference between here and DC. I suppose that’s the one thing that I liked about the place. It was filled with all of the misfits and outcasts who couldn’t stand the intolerant people populating the land, so they aggregated and made a crazy city and hiked up real estate prices so only the people who really truly wanted to be there would find a way to stay.

I’m hopeful I’ll find my out-pocketing of misfits here. Maybe on an island. With toys. And a dentist elf.

End Blog.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Good Friday

The Police really know how to celebrate. They had a barbeque today at the credit union over the lunch hours. Hot dogs and hamburgers on Good Friday. I applaud them for this.

If I follow that silly no eating meat rule, it’s purely by accident. Some little things have held over from the Methodist upbringing… you know, like still loving Christmas (although it’s mostly more for Santa and Comet than Jesus).

But this is one thing I’m happy to not participate in any more.

Because today I got good food for next to nothing! And, I gotta tell you… I don’t know what’s happened to me recently but… I love hot dogs. I think that the quality of hot dogs in the Midwest must be like, twelve levels above what they try to pass off as hot dogs on the east coast.

Dear East Coasters,
I’m sorry your hot dogs suck. If you ever find yourself in KC, buy a hot dog even if you don’t generally like them. And if you do like the crappy hot dogs you’re used to, I have no doubt that Midwestern hot dogs will be orgasmic. Just some friendly advice.
Hugs and Kisses,

And, hey, if it’s still Good Friday as you read this… go have a hot dog and think about Jesus.

Blasphemy! I know. I'm full of ways to disappoint Jesus.

End Blog.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

A Random 30 Questions

A: Tom O’Neill

A: Ring 3. I could not be more boring. Well, yes I could. I could have ring 1 or ring 2.

A: Talking to Mel, Mary Beth and Jeanna on IM when I should have been going to bed.

A: “Katie’s wedding was pretty. She was cute. We’re headed to the reception to get smashed.”

A: My own. Someday it’ll be the guest bed. And I’ll have a big huge comfy one for me. That I’ll let my guests sleep in because no one wants to sleep in the bed I’m currently sleeping in. Not even me.

A: Olive green. I used to think it was the ugliest crayon color as a kid. My, times have changed.

A: Dawn of the Dead.

Q: NAME 3 THINGS THAT YOU HAVE ON YOU AT ALL TIMES? (This shouldn’t be a question mark.)
A: A pair of gold hoop earrings (2) and silver and blue Fossil watch. I even sleep and shower with them. So, really, we are talking at all times.

A: Olive green and cream. At least the bottom sheet is. I don’t believe in top sheets. My blankets are cream and blue. Yes, I realize they don’t match. But, it’s a comfort issue not an aesthetic one.

A: $139.30. Because I have a job where I make money!

Q: What is your favorite part of the chicken? (Did you notice the change from all caps? What’s with that?)
A: The drumstick. Because I like the name. And yes, I did notice the switch from all caps. It really bothered me, although, not enough to actually change it.

Q: What's your favorite town/city?
A: I’m totally diggin’ KC. Lots. I don’t think I have a favorite town otherwise. Anyplace but DC.

Q: I can't wait to (til)...?
A: Sometime in May, probably around Memorial Day. Because there will be a drive to Texas to get my car inspected and I’ll get to see my dog. It’s been over a year. Oh, and my parents will be there too. Yeah.

Q: When was the last time you saw your mom?
A: March 1,2006 at like… 5:30am. I think.

Q: When was the last time you saw your dad?
A: See above.

Q: When was the last time you talked to them?
A: Actual talking? No idea. But like, just a few days ago on IM.

Q: What did you have for dinner LAST NIGHT?
A: Mashed potatoes. Yes, that’s a meal. And, dude, the caps are freakin’ me out.

Q: How long have you been at your current job?
A: 29 work days.

Q: Look to your left. What's there?
A: My briefcase which is sitting on top of my bed.

Q: Who is the last person you spent over $50 on?
A: Besides myself? No one. I spent over $50 last weekend to go see Brenda, but that wasn’t specifically on her. It was for like… food and gas. Although, I did purchase a $28 Chipotle order for people in withdrawal. Mmm Chipotle. Gotta share the joy.

Q: What's the last piece of clothing you borrowed from someone?
A: I don’t borrow clothing. Bren and I traded shirts… that’s probably the last thing I’ve worn of someone else’s.

Q: What website(s) do you visit the most during the day?
A: Google. There are many things that I do not know.

Q: Do you have an air freshener in your car?
A: No, that would ruin the new car smell. Although I can’t smell it, other people seem to enjoy it.

Q: Do you have plants in your room?
A: I have a plant in my back bedroom but not in mine.

Q: Does anything hurt on your body right now?
A: yeah, now that you mention it, my neck/shoulders. Are you coming to fix that?

Q: What city was your last taxi cab ride in?
A: Washington, DC. The night Howie Day didn’t show up to his concert. I’m still bitter.

Q: Do you own a camera phone?
A: No, I do not. In fact, I was given a dollar to use this phone, that’s how cheap it is.

Q: What's your favorite Starbucks drink?
A: Caramel Macchiato.

Q: Recent time you were really upset?
A: Sunday through Tuesday morning.

Q: Who do you think will repost this?
A: Probably no one. Unless they’re really bored. Maybe if I say Beth she’ll be guilted into doing it. So… Beth. And Erin. She should do it too.

End Blog


Today in history (April 13), Commander James Lovell spoke the infamous words, "Houston, we've got a problem," aboard the ill-fated flight of Apollo 13.

And, like... you thought you had a bad day.

Makes a good arguement against the number 13, eh?

End Blog.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Gas Was 88 Cents the Day I Got My License

I have often wished that I had a way to see into the future, limited only to a few days and specifically for the purpose of knowing what the gas prices will be – lest I accidentally ruin something important. (You know how time travel can be tricky like that.)

But, as it turns out, I no longer need such a fancy device. Why, you ask? Because I’ve learned a fundamental truth of the universe.

Gas prices go up on Wednesdays.

So, regardless of the level of your fuel tank on Tuesday night, fill it. You will thank me when you arrive home from work the following day with a relatively full tank of gas and pass a station advertising a fourteen cent price hike for the same product you bought the night before. Fourteen cents!

This plan would not have failed you for the past four weeks. The theory of “The Wednesday Hike” is a very good one, although I have no idea what the oil companies are doing Tuesday nights. (Kegger?)

But, since gas prices are $2.63 here, I thought I’d do a little internet research to make myself feel better. So I looked up what the gas prices are in DC! They range between $2.91 and $3.02 a gallon.

I was right. That did make me feel better.

And for even cheaper gas, we could move to Utah, Wyoming, Idaho or Montana. Or, for some God-unknown reason… New Jersey. Despite the strange laws making it illegal for you to pump your own gas (since 1949), their prices are way cheaper than the surrounding states. You’d think that they would raise prices to help pay for the people they must employ, but obviously this is not a factor involved in pricing.

And, for those of you interested, Oregon has the same full-service program set in place (since 1951), where only gas station professionals can administer fuel into the tank. Although, they don’t have the added advantage of super cheap gas like NJ does.

Some people think these laws should be revised. However, the residents in these states have never pumped their own gas and therefore do not know how. I, for one, don't think we should give them the privilege. Obviously there is some reason the policymakers enacted the law in the first place. You know, like, their states are filled with incompetent morons. (C’mon, don’t be angry, morons encompass the planet. I’m just stating the obvious. At least your lawmakers recognized this fact while the rest of the states elected their morons.)

Can you imagine? I mean… pumping gas is really complicated and hard to learn. They’d have to all take a class and be given demonstrations. The costs would be astronomical. Besides, I don’t think they could handle it. They think they’re too good to pump their own gas now, anyway. They’ve been spoiled. Even if we did teach them, they’d never do it.

In fact, I’ve never heard people from either of these states ever complain about having someone else do it for them. It’s only been whining about doing the actual manual labor themselves when they find they are no longer in their homeland and… oh, would I be a dear and please do it for them?

You can’t really blame them, though. I mean, who really wants to get out of their car on a cold and/or blazing hot day to pump gas when they don’t have to?

The only people that have a problem with this whole “you-can’t-pump-your-own-gas” thing are people from the other 48 states (and probably every other country with cars). Because we think it’s our God-given right to pump gas. Yet, we’d be pissed off if the pizza stopped being delivered or we were bothered with the inconvenience of going into a building instead of the drive thru.

I'm sure New Jersey and Oregon aren't going to apologize for the convenience anytime soon.


Based on these facts – cheap gas and never having to pump it – New Jersey sounds like a wonderful place.

In theory. =)

End Blog.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Madonna X-Static Process

I could listen to this song on repeat for days. It’s both sad and empowering for some reason and seems to help put me in a better mood anytime I’m down. I remember listening to this song endlessly when I moved to DC at the end of 2003. And now, after moving again… it still sits well with me. I have no idea why this of all songs is my comfort song. But it is. It soothes the rough edges.

And if I ever learned to play the guitar, I think I’d be happy only ever learning this one song. Although, I need a singing partner if I were to ever sing it, seeing as how she likes to make verses that overlap. I think it’s specifically so she can’t perform those songs live in concert principally to piss me off. (Can’t think of another? How ‘bout Rain?)

How I’d love to hear this one live, though. Madonna, a guitar, a stool, and a spotlight. Heck, I’ll even let her sit on the edge of the stage. No background singers, no dancers… just this song. Perfection. Alas… I can’t even go to her next concert because the closest she’s coming is to Chicago and in the middle of the week. You know… when I actually have money to go see her, it's impossible for me to do so.


I'm not myself when you're around
I'm not myself standing in a crowd
I'm not myself and I don't know how
I'm not myself, myself right now

Jesus Christ, will you look at me?
Don't know who I'm supposed to be
Don't really know if I should give a damn
When you're around, I don't know who I am

I'm not myself when you go quiet
I'm not myself alone at night
I'm not myself, don't know who to call
I'm not myself at all

Jesus Christ, will you look at me?
Don't know who I'm supposed to be
Don't really know if I should give a damn
When you're around, I don't know who I am

I always wished that I could find
Someone as beautiful as you
But in the process I forgot
That I was special too

I'm not myself when you're around
I'm not myself when you go quiet

I'm not myself all alone at night
I'm not myself standing in a crowd

I'm not myself and I don't know how

I'm not myself, myself right now
Don't know what I believe

Jesus Christ, will you look at me?
Don't know who I'm supposed to be

Don't really know if I should give a damn
Someone say if I should give a damn

When you're around, I don't know who I am

I always wished that I could find
Someone as beautiful as you
But in the process I forgot
That I was special too
I always wished that I could find
Someone as talented as you
But in the process I forgot
That I was just as good as you

I love you, Mo.

End Blog.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Postponing the Afterlife With Pop

I wanted to share this conversation I had recently with all of you, but I had to sort of recreate it since there was no way I was to know at the time that it’d end up being so hilarious (to me at least).

Saturday night, the Anderson residence.
A conversation between Nikki and Beth:

(Don't worry, you’ll be able to tell who’s who.)

I try not to drink that much soda.

I could never give up Dr Pepper. I love it too much. It makes me happy.

You’re an addict.

I am not.

The first step is admitting you have a problem. *

It’s not a problem. It’s good for you.

No, it’s not. Why do you think I feel guilty every time I drink a Coke?

I don’t know. Why? Soda’s good for you.

No, it’s not.

Yes, I bet the first ingredient is water. *Points to can in her hand* See? Carbonated water.

That’s not water.

Yes, it is. Water fortified with carbon. You have to get it from somewhere.

Carbon dioxide? You could get that from breathing.

*Continues reading ingredients* High fructose corn syrup and/or sugar. Goooood stuff. Carmel color, phosphoric acid, artificial and natural flavors. See, there are natural things in here. Sodium benzoate.

You don’t need that!

Yeah, I do. It’s a preservative. You’ll totally be sorry when I live longer than you. *Reads more* Caffeine. That’s the last ingredient - and I need caffeine.

No, you don’t need it. C'mon, need? See, you’re addicted.

Yes, but I need it because I’ll be living much longer than you.

My logic rocks.
End Blog.

*You can say the words and still not think it's a problem.

Monday, April 03, 2006

This Boggles the Mind

Study Fails to Show Healing Power of Prayer

While I don't disagree with the results, I hate how the study was performed. Didn't these people ever have a science class, like... ever? There are so many variables and confounding factors present in the study I don't even know how it was published or any conclusions were drawn.

And if the subjects believed in spritual healing, there's no way they weren't praying for themselves. So, why not just say there's over a 50 percent chance that you'll have post-surgical complications, no matter what you do?

This leads to few plausible conclusions, but here's what I'm going to go with since they got to draw conclusions from their stupid study I'm going to as well:
1. The reason you're in the hospital is most likely because it's your turn to die.
2. There isn't a God listening to anyone's prayers, should they be yours, those of your close friends or family, or perfect strangers praying on your behalf in the religious community.

You know who this is the worst news for? Not those who just went through surgery. It's the people who are leaders in the religious community. They were just told they were maybe only 50 percent effective. But then again... so were the doctors.

Guess it just goes to show that it doesn't matter how you try to fight for someone's life.

Oh, Man. Did I just make a case for fate? Crap.

End Blog.

Job Titles

I’ve decided I want to change my job title from “Criminalist” to “Crime Fighter” simply because it sounds more superhero-y. I never wanted to be a superhero when I was little, but now that I’ve grown up into my full adulthood maturity level, I’m sure that’s what I want to do. Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman… I recognize these people as my peers.

And since I’m not from another planet, don’t have cool powers or gadgets, and definitely don’t have millions of dollars, this is the best I can do. But, when you think about it… abstractly… that’s totally what I do now. I’m a superhero crime fighter.

I’m gonna see if I can get that on my business card.

End Blog.

Blast from the Past

Today during my reading I came across a biology term that sent me right back to freshman bio, finals week, when I was helping J cram for our last exam. We were sitting on my dorm room floor, going through our notes on reproduction. And as I was explaining it, I was talking with my hands – which for some reason seemed to help – and I made up hand signals for all the vocab words that were hard to remember.

Turns out, I still remember what the one for zona pellucida* is, and it made me smile. Not because I was especially fond of the material, but because I know that I helped J pass that test remarkably well.

What a lovely little memory of our first year as friends.

I miss you, kid.

Oh, and I also hate you because you are on a cruise right now. You better make sure you eat some for me, too.

End Blog.

*Zona pellucida – a thick transparent envelope that surrounds a developing ovum, allowing only one sperm cell through to fertilize the egg

Sunday, April 02, 2006

What The Hell?

Lebanon Valley College is tiny and in the middle of nowhere. I’m nearly positive, besides paying the professors, the only things they spend money on are building new dorms, renovating the old buildings, building completely useless bridges, tearing down trees, and landscaping. It’s a very beautiful place but I know they have tons of extra money that they are hoarding. They don’t like to throw it away on student affairs, but I have no idea what they're planning on using it for.

Even though there’s nothing to do.

LVCers have always just figured out how to entertain themselves. This involved a lot of time at Wal-Mart since it was the only place open 24 hours, driving to Harrisburg for actual entertainment, or drinking alcohol – which all college students universally enjoy.

The biggest thing to ever hit the school was the once a year party weekend we liked to call “Spring Arts”. I’m still not sure where the art part came in. I guess it was because we’d have live local bands come play for us and music is art.

Throughout college, it was the most awesome weekend every year. And we enjoyed our little college party, even if they tried to change the name and the image our senior year to “The Cherry Blossom Festival”. (The trees that were torn out were all replaced with one million ornamental cherry trees.)

Well, they’ve gone and changed the name again since hiring a new president. This time it’s being called “Valleyfest”. I approve of this change, as the weekend always was a big party. But… here’s the big news:

We only ever had local bands or cover bands because the school doesn’t spend money on such trivial things. Or they don’t fundraise enough for this major event – whatever the case may be. And while we complained a bit knowing that other colleges had big name headliners, we understood that we were a small school and things like that just didn’t happen in the middle of nowhere central Pennsylvania.

That being said… are you ready for this?

The fucking Gin Blossoms are going to play at Valleyfest.

Well, Hey Jealousy!

My world has just imploded. I no longer understand who I am or where I came from. My school? No way. They’re also having The Starting Line perform the night before. They sing The Best of Me. I love that song. You should download it.

Oh, and to the town of Annville: You can kiss LVC's collective ass and shove your noise ordinances where the sun don’t shine. You've been a college town since 1866. Probably the year most of you were born.

LVC just keeps getting better without me. Better Spring Arts, renovated Garber Science Center, new psychology department.

I still do not believe this. Insane. The love for my undergrad continues to grow beyond all plausibility.

End Blog.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

April is Panda Month

You know who I don’t hear about anymore? Tai Shan, my little Butterstick.

Now, those of you who don’t live in DC are probably saying “Who’s Tai Shan?” and those of you who do live in DC are probably saying, “Dude, he’s still on the news every single night.” (Not that people in DC regularly use the word “Dude”, and for that we can all hate them a little bit more.)

The National Zoo's giant panda, Mei Xiang, gave birth to her cub, Tai Shan, on July 9, 2005. Since then, he has been on the news, I swear, every single night. They had an entire voting system in place for choosing his name. There are tickets to see him and dinners in his honor.

But you know what? It was a cute news story every night and probably the only one that ever made me happy. I’ve never been a really big fan of pandas. That is, until that cute little guy. Man, that’s one adorable cub.

I will always remember his first exam when he was still nameless and they were describing his size as that of a stick of butter. So for many of us in DC at the time, he will always be our little Butterstick, even if we didn’t win the write-in campaign to name him.

Every time I would see him on the news an involuntary, “Awww!” would escape from my lips. It was uncontrollable. And I haven’t heard about him since I moved. The last time I heard anything, he’d just met his dad.

So, for an update, here’re things I didn’t know about Tai Shan:

He weighs over 40 pounds now. (That’s a lot of butter.)
He’s eating bamboo.
They gave him new trees and he loves to climb them, although it took him three whole days to notice. I can only imagine the “tree watch” that was going on among the zookeepers and the betting pool that must have occurred.
They are selling a Tai Shan DVD for $21.95.

I will never buy that DVD. It’s only 50 minutes. If you taped all the news stories since his birth, you’d have more footage than that.

Plus, who needs a DVD when you have panda cams?

End Blog.