Friday, August 17, 2012

Rockets, Baseball Bats, and Solid ground

School starts next week and I'm not signed up for any classes. Surprised? Me neither. I'm taking "flying by the seat of my pants" to a whole new level. It's as though I've packed my pants pockets with rockets and I'm lighting one every so often in order to reflect that moment when indecision cements itself into becoming a decision by default. Not that I'm not worried about it; I look for an opening every morning and evening in a class that I need, but this is what happens when you mega-procrastinate and switch majors a week before classes begin and spin around in circles with the tip of your nose on the end of a bat and then let go. WoOooaAah. Spinny. I wouldn't mind a little solid ground right now.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

All Growed Up

The fall school semester is upon us. It's giving me some anxiety. I supposedly have enough credits to apply for my Associates. I'm dragging my heels. I think this is because once I have my Associates I will be pushed from the cozy nest I've made at a community college and plunged into the cold uncharted waters of a university. Universities cost more. The teachers are more intimidating (in theory). I don't know my way around the campus. I don't know what I want to be when I grow up, even though I've already taken more time than your average go-getter would have taken. Being an adult is hard. I can scarcely decide what to wear in the morning; which toothpaste to choose in the grocery store; what I'm making for dinner. My free time is on autopilot. Now I have to choose a career path. I have to think and make grown up decisions and live with the consequences. I feel less at fault for potential failure if I just coast into the next open door, rather than reading the signs on the path, wiggling handles, picking locks that are intriguing. I want to get a dart board and paste my top ten choices on it, shoot, shoot, shoot a dart into my future. Make me feel less on-the-hook. How does one decide? I have been receding into the shadows of avoidance. I see neither bulls nor horns here. It is lukewarm and familiar and disappointing.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

The Little Things

I've discovered that one of the funniest things about babies is their poop face. They toddle to a semi-private location and make an expression that fuses vulnerability with stress and concentration. Brows knit together. Cheeks flatten and the mouth pulls down at its corners. The baby poop face instigates a hard-to-restrain chortle from me every time. Rock on, poop face!

Friday, July 6, 2012

The Death Penalty

I tend to be very liberal about most social topics, but when it comes to the death penalty I don't mince words. I am a strong supporter of the death penalty when a crime is especially heinous. I've heard some recent interviews on the BBC regarding a new wave of Americans opposing the death penalty, and I truly can't wrap my head around it. We spend about $22,000.00 per year to house ONE prison inmate and it takes years to carry out the death sentence. I don't think they should be killing everyone who commits a murder, but certain depraved criminals are a drain on tax dollars and, frankly, a waste of air.
A couple of weeks ago, on 6/27/12, an Arizona inmate was put to death. Here is a description of his crime: "On October 29, 1986, Lopez broke into the apartment of 59-year-old Estafana Holmes. Lopez raped, beat, and stabbed Ms. Holmes. Her body was found nude from the waist down, with her pajama bottoms tied around her eyes. A lace scarf was crammed tightly into her mouth. She had been stabbed 23 times in the left breast and upper chest, three times in her lower abdomen, and her throat was cut. Lopez' body fluids matched seminal fluids found in Ms. Holmes' body." In my opinion, that person does not deserve to be alive. I can't understand why people advocate to abolish this form of punishment. I read about an artist who draws pictures of their last meals in order to protest. I wonder if that artist's opinion would change if they instead drew pictures of the crime scene. I don't mean to be so aggressive, but reading about that particular crime really set my blood to boiling.
I know there are some good rebuttals about why not to implement the death penalty. The most compelling of which are those folks who end up being proven innocent after years and even decades in prison. I think that our system is getting much more fine tuned due to DNA evidence and hope that the false conviction of innocent people is a thing of the past. Sadly, there's no way to be 100% certain. Jurors do their very best, but human error is unavoidable. What do you think of the death penalty? Feel free to disagree with me; I respect that everyone has a right to their own beliefs and will certainly respect yours. If you're interested in looking up further info on Arizona's executed inmates, here is the link.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy 4th of July!

Let's get things started right with Don McLean.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Andy Griffith Show

Andy Griffith died today at age 86. Growing up, my great grandpa and I used to watch The Andy Griffith Show together with the rest of the family. It was one of the links between he and I and I feel a little pang of loss again today to learn that one of our living links has broken. I don't claim a religion; there may be something beyond death or there may be nothing. But if by some chance there is something, I hope Pappy, Andy Griffith and I can gather again out in the Great Beyond and rustle up some mischief.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Vacation: Flare Up Edition!

Ahoy, ye scurvy dogs! About a week ago I went on vacation to visit my sister in Florida before she goes overseas. We spent every day doing at least one super fun thing. The only thing that put a damper on my trip was the fact that I'm in the midst of a colitis flareup. I will attempt to tell you via photo/captions about the highs and lows of the trip.
Soaking in the beautiful scene at Ft. Walton Beach.
Underwater adventure, wherein I ponder the question, "Am I going to take a shit in the ocean?"
Getting rough with a greedy llama as he tries to take all the food I bought to feed the zoo animals, wherein I ponder, "Am I going to take a shit while yelling at this llama?"
Plowing through the open water on a wave runner, wherein I ponder, "Am I going to take a shit in the open ocean and attract one or more sharks, which will lead to my very untidy demise?"
Photo op on the pier, wherein I ponder "Am I going to take a shit on the pier?"
Up close and personal with a sea lion at Gulf World Marine Park, wherein I ponder "Am I going to take a shit while standing beside a sea lion?"
And finally, holding hands with a 500 pound, 30 year old dolphin named Sandy, wherein I ponder "Am I going to take a shit while holding hands with a dolphin?" I am happy to report that, while many shits were taken, I did not shit in any undesignated shitting areas. Despite my fear of extreme humiliation, I made the decision that I had to fully experience my vacation and take the risk of shame. It turned out alright this time. Maybe next time it won't, but I can't stop having fun, even if the fun is to be had between bouts of pain and frenzy. I was also able to grab Sandy's fin while she took me on a short ride around the tank. Every picture I took in the dolphin tank captures the childlike joy that I experienced during the time I was there, which was worth every second of uncertainty.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Watch for Falling Rocks

Oh man, I was doing well. Making mountains out of mole hills. Forgetting the past pains and pleas with an unknown higher-up, chanted mantras of things I'd be willing to trade. A tiny pebble began rolling down the hill of my serene reverie, a pebble I didn't know about, a pebble that turned into a few stones that turned into an all-out rumbling mountain of things rather recently buried, but still largely out of my memory. Oh pebble, had I known about you I surely would have swept you up into my pocket and jingle-jangled out a tune with you, fueled by the knowledge that my reverie was nearly corrupted, wistfully getting out a "Whew, that was a close one!" But nay, Someone dislodged you and didn't take heed of my warnings about rolling pebbles. I was an experiment gone wrong. An "I told you so" that backfired, with miserable consequences. I will build up dams in the dry desert sun to maybe stop you. You may use them as a ramp to catch some air or you may decide to take a rest, at least for awhile. Signs touting "Watch for falling rocks" are now being stoutly posted along the roadway, along with nets of chain-link spread like butter on bread across the most dangerous areas. You've got me running now, Pebble, but I will secure the tender still-safe regions and do my best to carry on. I've got my eye on you.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

A Poem About S's

She feels warm and victimized.
So you show her your smile, and open wide,
Spilling secrets like a lamb.
She croons sympathies and
Silently nods her secrecy

She is a snake and
Spills her guts
Since you’re out of earshot
Slathers on some embellishment
Strings her puppet around

Saccharine again
She feels warm and victimized
So you show her your smile, and open narrow,
Stashing the gold and silver nuggets
Sharing the bronze
So she has something to hold onto
Savvy double agent

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Current Musical Obsession: CocoRosie

Try not to stare at the facial hair too much...tends to take away from the song. :P

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Birthday, Big Fella!

Today Arizona turns 100 years old. As it turns out, I am a fourth generation Arizonan; my great grandpa was born in Arizona Territory in 1908, four years before Taft granted us statehood. I have never felt a draw to live in another state. I love it here. Most of the year is beautiful weather and the landscape is hugely varied; from sparse desert to lush forest, in only a few hours' travel. This is the place for me! Keep on rockin', AZ!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Blushing Bookworm

I don't think I mentioned that I got a Kindle for my birthday. Umm...did I even mention my birthday? Drat. Well, it was on November 13th, which happened a few months ago. I tend to be a day late and a buck short. Anyway! Kindle! I was incredibly excited to receive it! I got the base model, so there aren't many "bells and whistles" like internet access, but I adore it.
At first I felt slightly guilty for turning my back on the romanticism that comes with that new-book-smell, opening virgin pages, knowing my eyes were the first to browse the words, but likely not the last, the excitement that comes with sharing a book. And I can still have that experience, if I have a sentimental reason for owning a particular book. However, the Kindle kicks ass in many ways, and my sentimental leanings have been drowned out by the very cool features of the Kindle. The screen isn't like a typical electronic back-lit gadget; the screen is E Ink, which means it looks JUST LIKE the page of a book, ink on paper, with no back lighting. My absolute favorite thing is the dictionary; all I have to do is put my cursor in front of the mystery word and BOOM! The definition is displayed at the top of the page and I know the meaning of what would have otherwise remained a mystery! My vocabulary is preening as of late. In the past, I would have just allowed the word to slip through the cracks due to laziness. Sometimes I even look up words I already know to get a more clear understanding. This feature alone has kept me fawning over the Kindle. There are some other things, like the ability to rent a library book, or hopping online and owning a book in less than a minute, that are pretty excellent. Some other capabilities are the highlighting feature, and the notes feature, which allow the reader to highlight passages they find worthy of highlighting, or making notes about a particular passage. And the option to choose a text size is excellent, considering I just went to an optometrist and discovered that I'll be needing to wear glasses. So sophisticated, wearing my glasses and reading my Kindle. The only real downside is (and forgive me for being a whiner) when I shut off the Kindle, a freaking ad appears on the screen (like 50% off yoga, or shop at [store name] for good deals). I don't know if I've mentioned my unbridled hatred for pushy and blatant advertising, but that's one thing that irritates me to the core. All in all, that tiny gripe doesn't stand up against the pros that this lovely little reading machine has given me. Happy reading, from one bookworm to another! :D

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Bare Tree Decals

I am currently completely obsessing over these gorgeous bare tree wall decals on Etsy (and elsewhere). They are so gorgeous!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Awww, Fiddle Faddle!

I just love when alliteration springs up in my everyday life.
"I'm taking my Fiddle Faddle and getting the fuck outta here!"

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Mr. Lucky's

Now vacant, Mr. Lucky's used to be a bar with a big draw on Grand Avenue in Phoenix. The old and faded sign, a sinister smiling joker, still stands as a beacon of what once was. The building is surrounded in chain link fence, and is home to a friendly rottweiler family (mama, papa, and baby rottweiler) who will gladly lick your fingers and chase you along the fence, as long as you befriend the excitable Papa Rottweiler first. Though now closed, Mr. Lucky's holds a special place in my heart. Many moons ago when my mom and dad were young and enamored with one another, they shared a trailer behind Mr. Lucky's - the trailer in which I was conceived. Without Mr. Lucky's, there would be no me. That's a very classy story for me to tell at parties and social gatherings.

Location: 3660 Grand Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85019-3407

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Spring 2012

School starts next week. Did you hear that muffled sound? Don't worry, it's just me weeping. I'm taking Spanish 202 (the last Spanish class I'll have to take for my degree!), public speaking, and an anthropology class called Stones, Bones & Human Evolution. I've never taken an anthro class before, so I'm actually a bit excited about it. Between school and work, I will undoubtedly be rocking back and forth in the fetal position by April, but I feel like there will be freedom once that Spanish 202 class is over. The foreign language thing has been the most difficult series of classes I've ever taken. I don't feel like I have a good grasp on it; the wheels started to fall off around SPA201 (the 3rd semester), when I started taking the online class. If I had time to burn I'd love to start over and take them all again (or at least the first two) as non-credit classes, just to polish my knowledge. Ah well. I've gotta keep marching. I dream of the day I'll be able to take classes just for FUN, to learn something new. In the mean time, I'll be marching forward.

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Year's 2011

This year I decided to go to the Fiesta Bowl Block Party for New Year's Eve because the Gin Blossoms were playing. I have loved their music and wanted to see them play a show for years. Tempe is their hometown, so the fact that they were playing where they started the band made me feel all warm and fuzzy. To give my adventure another twist, I decided to ride the Phoenix light rail, which I've been meaning to do since it opened in December of 2008, but somehow never had the right opportunity. Navigating the light rail was surprisingly easy, and was a great way to do some people-watching. People watching is a good time on New Year's Eve because there is such a hodgepodge mix of people; older couples dressed sharply, vagabonds, rotund drunken slovenly folk, spring chickens with tiny sequined skirts and dark eye makeup, all shaken up and tossed in the same pot to stew. Once Richard and I arrived at our light rail stop, we zigzagged our way through the line and were birthed onto Mill Avenue with all the other shiny happy people celebrating the new year. There were stages, a super slide, a ferris wheel, a mechanical bull, an old black man playing his saxophone on the sidewalk for tips (I gave him $1 that I folded into a bow tie, because I'm skilled in the art of dollar bill bow ties), a psychic, and overpriced food and beverage stands. We actually paid $18 for two hot dogs and a drink. I am still digesting that fact, though the hot dogs have come and gone. Once we meandered over to the stage, we shuffled as far up as we could comfortably manage and dug in for the show. I wasn't sure what to expect but I was pleasantly surprised. The singer was perfect and hit every note, and the band was excellent. My love of Gin Blossoms was reinforced and I'm always excited to add a new band to my List of Bands I've Seen Live. I hope you all had an excellent New Year's Eve celebration. Cheers to Twenty Twelve!