goodness, nerd

The best possible ending to 2012

I just discovered this Star Trek: The Next Generation gag reel from season 2 (I think).  As if I needed another reason to love Star Trek.  I’ve watched it twice tonight.  SO GOOD.


badness, humor, school, work

Parking fail

I park in the same parking garage off campus every day.  People who park there are like me: repeat customers.  You’ll typically find the same cars in their favorite spots.  Every car there belongs to someone who works at or attends the university where I work/go to grad school.

So it’s weird when someone does a horrendous parking job.  It’s not like they’ve never parked there before.  There is really no excuse.

But since it’s possible that this horrible parker is a co-worker or classmate, I can’t put mean notes on these cars.  I have to rely on comedy to get my point across.



i made this

UPDATE: April 1, 2013
Once again, some oblivious sheep did a shitty parking job with an SUV in a compact spot.  So I became a smartass.  Again:

sweet parking job bro

sweet parking job bro


goodness, humor, life, manfolk

Hi, my name is Awkward

I’m still doing shit like this (in my head).  I feel like a child.  I feel dumb.  I need to accept the fact that I will:
a) never be one of those super cool adults that have their shit together
b) never not do shit like this

goodness, nerd

Fun with words

I cannot recommend the H. P. Lovecraft reading experience highly enough.  In addition to being totally immersed in his fantastic writing style and dark, misty universe full of monsters and ancient, unspeakable evil, Lovecraft is making me a smarter person.  New vocabulary for the win!

smooth with bubbles inside

smooth with bubbles inside

Word of the Week: Fulgurite
Fulgurites are awesome.  They’re the result of a lightning strike (or some other intense discharge of energy, like a downed power line) to the ground.  The soil/sand fuses and liquefies, then instantly hardens, creating a tube in the shape of the path the discharging energy took.

Here’s the really cool part: Fulgurites can be found all over the Sahara desert.  Why would that be?  There’s no lightning in the Sahara desert today, but the presence of fulgurites demonstrates that what is now a desert used to have completely different eco and weather systems.  So tubes of glassy sand buried deep in the desert tell us that the driest desert on the planet used to have intense rain and thunder storms.  Super cool!

fulgurite 1

the path of lightning

badness, humor, life, manfolk

The sleep issue

Boyfriend’s out of town.  I’ve killed two whole bugs.  I did all the dishes I’ve been allowing to accumulate over the past week.

Side note: The joy of not doing my dishes has literally made me giggle aloud a few times recently.  Needless to say, I’m enjoying Boyfriend being out of town a whole lot more than expected.  It’s pretty fun, setting my own schedule, not checking in with anyone, sitting around watching Buffy all afternoon and writing my blog [like right now], drinking tea in front of the TV, not paying attention to Boyfriend… overall, a very relaxing, fun experience so far.

But getting to sleep is still a problem.  I found this chart to explain.  It does a pretty good job (except for the screenplay part: replace that with creating imaginary conflicts in which I dominate).

pretty damn accurate

pretty damn accurate

badness, humor, work

Haiku distraction: Motivational speaker

At an Office Job meeting some months ago, the invited speaker was a college football coach (for some reason).  He went to the podium and spoke enthusiastically (and endlessly) about the football players and so on, none of which had to do with the parents or their kids.  And yet on he went, giving me material to haiku about.


Facebones: the ultimate motivational speaker

Facebones: the ultimate motivational speaker

He’s got that gung-ho
attitude.  He’s a winner.
Euthanize him, please.

Coaches are basically motivational speakers with hundreds of sports plays smashed into their heads.

Coach Buck Bobby-Joe
Johnson has a story for
everything today.

“Lemme tell you about this one kid,” he said many, many times.  None of the stories were pertinent to the meeting’s purpose or its participants in any way.  But football is huge, and the players are mini-celebrities, so he had a pretty captive audience.

He says it’s “college
football, not football college.”
Why’s he our speaker?

Needless to say, I was unimpressed with his presentation, nor am I particularly enamored of any celebrity athlete-types.

For a football coach,
he sure is enthused about
education.  Right?

He kept emphasizing the football players’ scholarly pursuits, as if that’s why any of them attend college (or that anyone in the room gave a shit).

pointless pointless pointless

pointless pointless pointless

Then someone else stood up to speak, as if that’s what we needed: more monologuing.

This guy’s got a mouth
on him.  The crowd loves him.  These
parents are sold now.

This guy had started his own email/blog thingie about college sports, and could not stop talking even though he kept saying, “I’ve been speaking too long,” and “I said I was going to keep it short, and I’ll finish soon.”  Still, the crowd was with him, so he had no reason to shut up.

I’d had enough of listening to white men wax poetical about their hard-on for football.  It was time for dessert.

The vanilla cake
was apparently made by
Hello Kitty.  Yum!

The cake had lace and pink shit all over it.  I couldn’t figure out what was edible and what was decoration.  I think the point was to kill us with sweetness in more ways than one.


every attendee at the meeting resembled this guy

every attendee at the meeting resembled this guy

“The most precious gifts
are those unwrapped by the heart.”
Christ, what does that mean?

The time then came for the parents to endlessly thank each other for all their endless giving and “hard work.”  The speeches were the worst part.

So many awards!
How thankful can a group of
volunteers be?  Guh.

What a monumental waste of time.  So much money spent on gifts and certificates and crap, I could not believe the self-congratulatory nonsense my coworkers and I witnessed in just three long hours.  I felt like shouting, “Feed some homeless people, you rich, white bastards!”

On an unrelated note, my search for Facebones pulled up this “Jem” (pun very much intended).




Beautiful Creatures is a terrible, terrible book

I noticed a movie about magic people called Beautiful Creatures is coming out, and I figured Ballerina Friend would like to go see it, and may have already read the book.  I thought it would be fun to read it and chat about it with her later, a sort of impromptu book club for two.  Unfortunately, Beautiful Creatures is a terrible, terrible book.

I wrote a review on (see below).  I hated this book, but the part of me that hates things is smushed up against my sense of humor, so my vitriolic review had to be peppered with some comedy:

Beautiful Creatures makes Twilight look like Gone with the Wind.  It’s hundreds of pages worth of unfounded teen angst.  If I hadn’t read it on my Kindle, I would use it for toilet paper.


god it must be hard being the 'beautiful loner'

god it must be hard being the ‘beautiful loner’

The author attempts to end every chapter with a cliffhanger, and ends up using a small variety of the same one every time: “We were running out of time.”  The teenage boy who narrates the story is apparently so unfamiliar with (and horrified by) the linear progression of time, than he cannot BELIEVE that time marches forward no matter how badly he apparently wants to… I dunno, kiss (?) this girl.

Every character has exactly one dimension:
-Southerners are nasty, old fashioned, racist, stupid and shallow.
-Kids in bands are grungy, semi-friendly, and give their cars edgy names like “The Beater,” which is a huge opportunity for a penis joke, which the author misses completely.
-The only educated people in town are from elsewhere.
-No one ever leaves the town.  EVER.  The author feels the need to point this out a couple dozen times throughout the book just so you can remember how hard it is to be a teenager trapped in a beautiful house with a private cook and a free education.  Must be rough.
-The old ladies are all genuinely crazy.  It’s not cute.  They need medical attention.
-The one non-white character is an African American woman who works as a cook, practices voodoo, and sounds like a racist black face character.
-Magical-type people (“casters,” not witches, because that would be just one too many clichés, apparently) all fall within one category only: old-fashioned, slutty as hell, mentally challenged, or goth.  Pick one, then add ‘incompetent’ because in a book about “casters,” you’d think some “casting” would occur, but you’d be wrong.  When a few spells finally do get cast, all they end up doing is lighting fires and glaring at each other.  The tension is non-existent.

Here are a few things that DO happen, inexplicably:
-The main character proves to be psychic.  It’s not a big deal for some reason.
-A magic house changes its interior structure occasionally, but this serves no real purpose.
-The narrator is said to have some kind of power, but it’s never explained.
-Various “casters” are said to be types, like “natural” or “catalyst,” but these terms are never explained.
-The evil (and therefore slutty, of course) “caster” is capable of making people do anything she wants, and she chooses to use this power to mess up a prom.
-One of the “casters” drives a hearse for no reason.
-The whole book leads up to a night on which something bad is supposed to happen to this “caster” girl.  Her guardian (who has spent the whole book up to this point freaking out and protecting her from death) lets her attend what is essentially a rave that very night, which is obviously a terrible idea, but in the end, doesn’t matter much either.

The inconsistencies in this book were exhausting.  Still, I like magic stories so I kept reading thinking, “Surely, SURELY this will culminate in some kind of climax that will ultimately explain what a ‘natural’ or a ‘catalyst’ is.  SURELY all those other characters I’ve spent so much time reading about will prove to be more than just talking scenery.  Surely I haven’t just wasted $9 and a few days of my life reading this terrible, terrible book.”

Guess what: No.  Just no.

Do not buy this book.  Do not see the movie.  Save your money for food, shelter, or ice skating.  Ice skating is a better experience than this book, even if you hate ice skating.

goodness, life

French oils and light

There’s something to be said for the treatment of light in French oil paintings in the 1800s.  This piece hides it like a treasure.  Dawn hides behind an antiquated stone wall, sliding through the doorway while a few locals relax into their pastoral errands on a crisp morning.  You can almost see small puffs of the horse’s breath as it grazes, and hear the gentle bustle of the town waking up behind its tall, silent guardian gate.

Porte de la Reine at Aigues-Mortes by Jean-Frédéric Bazille

Porte de la Reine at Aigues-Mortes by Jean-Frédéric Bazille (click for full size)