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A Journey Into Madness

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Sunday, September 8th, 2013
12:41 am - Note to self: don't post on the internet when you're drunk
I get so ridiculously, goofily happy when I drink and I just want to share my love for everything with everyone. But it's so embarrassing when I sober up. I'm 31, I really should know this by now, but it's a lesson I keep forcing myself to relearn over and over...

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Sunday, December 9th, 2012
11:33 pm - my subconscious moonlights as a B-movie director
A while back I had this dream where there was this sort of dual effect, feeling myself in two places at once: an actor-me, taking part in the dream; and an observer-me, just watching and thinking. I only recall the tail end of the dream, but protagonist-me was trying to kill a gigantic venomous snake with my bare hands. The other, semi-disconnected part of my mind was doing nothing but think actor-me was being ridiculous. So protagonist-me was all "die, snake, die!" and observer-me was like "this is completely moronic. Shouldn't I be wearing protective gloves or something at least?" because the snake kept biting my unprotected arms.

Anyway I eventually was successful in killing the snake and was simultaneously reveling in my badassery as I was shaking my head at my DUMBassery. (While also being slightly impressed despite myself... I mean, it was a pretty huge snake "I" killed with my bare hands.) I took the snake corpse with me to the hospital in the hopes of developing an antivenom.

What the venom was going to do, I wasn't sure, so my dream sort of showed me... I saw myself looking into a mirror and OMG! I was turning into a snake. My face had converted into gigantic, crude scales, looking a bit like a mosaic of my face put together out of about a dozen pieces of broken crockery. I saw myself hesitantly touch my cheek in the mirror, and then the scales all broke apart into much much smaller and more refined scales, more legitimately snake-looking.

This was actually a pretty interesting visual effect (I wonder if my subconscious stole it from somewhere?), but I thought it was cool (if scary) for one moment and then it was like my brain completely mutinied on me. That's stupid! Venom cannot turn people into snakes! It makes no biological sense! I was so outraged by the nonsense of it all that I immediately woke up, the taste of indignance still sharp on my tongue.

It was frankly bizarre. I've done the "realize you're dreaming and then promptly wake up" bit before, but this was more like... MSTing my own dream as it was happening. I didn't quite realize I was dreaming so much as conclude the plot I was observing sucked. Which is a situation I kind of find hilarious on its own. I'm raging against the hack writing of my own subconscious...? Talk about being your own worst critic.

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Tuesday, November 6th, 2012
11:38 pm - THANK GOD
Now I can go back to caring about my other, non-poll watching related hobbies!

This was the first Presidential election year I voted in a non-swing state (FL-2000, FL-2004, NC-2008). (Yes, I vote in the off-years too.) Kinda... anticlimactic, I guess, but better to be in a solid blue state than to be in a swing state that ultimately goes red. It looks like our attempt to legalize marijuana failed, but it passed in other states. Damn it! Well, if it works out well for them, I'm sure we'll get another go at it in later years. I haven't touched the stuff in ages myself anyway, I just think the drug war is a fucking disaster in every imaginable way.

But I'm relieved as hell we won't be seeing President Romney. Obama, I just really hope you have a kickass second term compared to your first. Not that it was all bad, and what was bad wasn't all your fault, and I know of course no human being could possibly have lived up to the expectations that were set for you... but...

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Friday, October 5th, 2012
4:40 am - Apparently I have an unpopular opinion
I went into the Presidential Debate full of anxiety. Mitt Romney has been trailing (thank God) and apparently trapped in a death spiral of his own making. The word for weeks has been that the debates are his last chance to turn the momentum. He had everything riding on this debate and would for sure be prepared as humanly possible.

Would the President? I didn't know. I was afraid. He could blow it. With a race this close, the guy who wants it by that much more might take it.

When I watched, Mitt Romney struck me as anxious. Hyper. Desperate. "Like me, like me, like me!" Guess what? I didn't like him. He was pathetically needy for the last word, his figures were bullshit and his "zingers" either made no sense ("trickle-down government"?) or backfired (yeah, fire Big Bird!).

Obama came across as cool and in command. Yeah, kinda meandering. Not as witty as I would have liked, but overall solid. He knows what he's talking about and knows Romney's full of it.

So I was fine with things. The debate... happened. Lehrer sucked, am I right?

Then... the aftermath. STARK RAVING TERROR. To me it feels like Democrats feel comfortable only when they are running around like headless chickens or something. Surely I'm completely unsurprised that the pundit class came down on the side of the debates taking the race closer to a tie because the alternative would be that we have nothing to talk about! Granted, if most ordinary people feel Obama lost -- as seems to be the case -- that's a cause for concern. On the other hand, it seems that only by the Chicken Little-ist of metrics is Obama's loss of the magnitude for concern some would make it out to be. The overall factors working against Romney are still working against Romney. Debates matter, but they have to be really striking and definitive to matter enough to close the gap here. I don't think that happened. I think Romney stopped accelerating into his death spiral, but that's not the same thing as reversing course.

I could be wrong. I'd really hate to be. I don't want Mitt Romney as the President. On the other hand flipping out over it doesn't seem likely to do good in any case, so does it matter that I'm not?

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Thursday, September 27th, 2012
8:08 pm - payroll taxes v income taxes
When did payroll taxes cease to be "real taxes"?

I'm seriously wondering about this. The only way to parse a lot of tax-related conversations going on right now is to make this very assumption -- that payroll taxes, the money that's taken out of your check before you yourself ever lay eyes on it, the regressive tax that people making less than $100,000* pay at a higher rate of total income than people making millions pay, are not "real" somehow. Income taxes are the only "real" taxes, payroll taxes do not count. Anyone who has only paid payroll taxes, not to mention sales taxes (which ALSO hit people on the bottom harder), are not real taxpayers, they are the moocher class. Even if they've never taken any earned income tax credits, even if they have always given more to Uncle Sam than they get back, they are irresponsible and terrible people who feel "entitled" to crazy things like FOOD.

(Yeah, Romney! How dare anyone think they should be entitled to food! That sounds bad enough on the surface of it, but in the context of bashing people who don't pay income taxes, his statement comes off as berating the people who think they should be "entitled" to earn a living wage. Man, fuck this guy. Fuck him so hard.)

Since payroll taxes are OBVIOUSLY so unimportant and don't count as real taxes, why do rich people not have to pay them on income earned over $100,000? Isn't it kind of AMAZINGLY convenient that the taxes we don't need to be talking about are the ones the millionaires contribute LESS of their overall percentage income to? If they are so unimportant, either get rid of them and ONLY use income taxes, or get rid of the cap so EVERYONE pays at the same rate. Don't act like they don't exist and then complain about poor people not paying "their fair share"!

*technically $106,800 or something like that, $100,000 is easier to remember

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Tuesday, August 21st, 2012
8:55 pm - pseudo-independence
So, uh...

Dad had been offered a job in Texas and then they didn't contact him in forever so he assumed it had fallen through. So I had been all set to get a job here and had in fact secured one with Apple, which I was kinda psyched about, and then the very day after I had my interview WHOOPS Texas called back. So the plan was to be moving and so I was told to cancel...

Sigh...

The AFTER doing that the plan changed AGAIN and my parents went down to Texas together with a bare minimum of stuff. It's a temporary contract so there's no point in moving everything until there's some guarantee my father will get hired on full-time (supposedly there are high odds this will happen, but still). So my folks left me and my brother some money and they're down there and we're up here alone.

So here we are in a three-bedroom apartment that's paid for and we basically have to do nothing (yet) except not choke on our own filth or something. Paul, contrary to expectation, hasn't been difficult at all. So I'd be nuts to complain about this situation... except, I don't feel independent or responsible or even like a particularly good person. They left us money and I don't spend it on anything except groceries.

Paul thinks the experiment is a success and so he wants me to get a job so we can get a place together since he collects SSI -- he doesn't collect quite enough by himself, but if I had income and he pooled his resources it would work. Neither of us want to leave Portland.

I need to see if I can get that job back. It'd be changing the plan on my parents, but I hardly think they'd mind.

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Sunday, June 3rd, 2012
11:22 pm - So we are apparently moving to Texas
We haven't been here a year! I'm happy about the circumstances that make moving inevitable, but less than happy about the moving itself. I've been to Texas. I was born there, yes, but I'm not anxious to take up shop there. I don't like being hot, I don't like bugs, and I don't like conservative politics.

I do like my family, though, so... well, I guess there are trade-offs. But... sigh.

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Thursday, March 29th, 2012
10:17 pm - This Trayvon Martin business is getting to me
I've actually gotten a lot angrier over this whole thing recently than I was just to begin with, when the story was that George Zimmerman shot and killed an unarmed kid and wasn't arrested or charged with anything. THAT was terrible, and I was amazed by it, but I thought a lot of people were going too far. The outcry I relate to. The protests are protected speech. The lynch-mob mentality is alarming. The bounty? Way, way out of line.

Then cue backlash. Here's where I've been losing it lately. The things I have seen said about Trayvon on boards and blogs and videos and so forth are just absolutely vile. I never saw anything like it in the earlier days of the case. First it seemed everybody was baffled and upset, there didn't seem to be a real right/left divide on the issue. But things have gotten really ugly lately and now I'm finding myself reading claims that it's a good thing Trayvon is dead. Zimmerman wasn't just acting in self-defense, he did the world a favor! That because Trayvon wasn't squeaky clean and was suspended from school he was obviously and irrefutably a gangbanger, a thug. That we should thank Zimmerman, for -- for what?! What relevance does his suspension (which had nothing to do with violence) have that to the fact Trayvon wasn't doing anything wrong and Zimmerman followed him, and then shot him? Maybe he's telling the truth and Trayvon actually attacked him first, but ye gods! As if Zimmerman were just ambling along aimlessly instead of intentionally tailing this kid! So Zimmerman attacked he was "standing his ground", but if Trayvon did it, he was just acting on some random violent impulse to punch the first person he saw? I'm sure being tailed by an armed loony could damn well make a lone kid feel "threatened", but God forbid we give the dead person any benefit of the doubt!

And people who are screaming about Zimmerman "not getting a fair trial" seem to be missing the point that NOT BEING CHARGED MEANS YOU DON'T GET A TRIAL AT ALL. This issue is huge not because Zimmerman shot and killed Martin, but because he shot and killed him and WASN'T ARRESTED OR CHARGED WITH ANYTHING. The issue isn't OMG SOMETHING BAD HAPPENED TO A BLACK PERSON, it's OMFG FLORIDA HAS LEGALLY SANCTIONED MURDER! That is a huge fucking deal! Of course Zimmerman deserves a fair trial, of course he should be acquitted if he's innocent, and to be honest if he's innocent I feel a little sympathy for the guy since the negative publicity has probably done more harm to him than trial and acquittal would have. But many people seem to think it's better to assume Trayvon Martin deserved to die than that George Zimmerman wasn't right to shoot him, or even that it was a tragic accident -- and Trayvon Martin, being dead, will never have it so good as to get a fair trial. The ease and in some case glee with which people eat up that narrative turns my stomach more than a little, and many have abandoned any and all pretense of not being racist.

Ugh!

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Thursday, March 15th, 2012
8:50 pm - Game Change - 3 stars!
So I watched that HBO movie, "Game Change," about the addition of Sarah Palin to McCain's 2008 presidential election campaign, and was very impressed -- and also rather horrified. What sort of surprised me was how much I enjoyed it just as a drama, that would have been compelling to watch even if 100% fictional (as some on the right are claiming it is). The performances are excellent, and it really captures a rather frightening surreality to the whole business, along with a sense of slowly growing horror from the aides who allowed it all to happen and then couldn't stop it as it transformed into a juggernaut. Of course the ending is a foregone conclusion (spoiler alert: Obama wins), but the point isn't to shock you with the twists and turns of the plot, but to suck you in to the human drama that plays out behind the scenes, and it does an excellent job at it. All of the characters are humanized, and while I would say the portrait it paints of Palin is unflattering on the whole, she's no cardboard villain. I can see Steve Schmidt as a guy who was playing to win, wanting to get the guy he believed in elected through realpolitik that blew up in his face to a spectacularly unfathomable degree. And it's hard not to feel sorry for Nicolle Wallace, who didn't have anything to do with Palin's selection and wound up so bothered by the idea of Palin as VP that she winds up... well, spoiler it yourself if you don't know, that revelation works best in the narrative. McCain almost gets it too good, he's almost unfailingly shown to be a decent guy who refuses to stoop to any method. I seem to recall the real McCain backing down on almost every unorthodox position he ever took, but oh well, creative license.

What's scary is to have lived through that period and to have known how much of it WAS true, how close we came to putting a completely unqualified person a heartbeat away from the presidency. When I watch the movie as a narrative drama, I sympathize with the characters. When I watch it as a piece of history, I'm horrified all over again, thinking how easy it is to empathize with the people responsible and understand their choices. Sarah Palin never should have been on the ticket for a major political party, but in the name of ambition and expediency she was put on the fast track to power without being properly vetted first. It's a dire warning about how we choose candidates and the pitfalls of putting a campaign ahead of the nation, and for all that I want to point partisan fingers at the Republicans I think the movie does a good job of so completely removing specific policy aspects that I am able to believe it was less their platform in particular, than Washington politics -- and the human ability to rationalize -- in general. Both parties take heed.

(Of course, Palin is still around and shows no signs of having grown, intellectually or morally, but I don't think she will ever have legitimacy as a national candidate. A demagogue, yes, but it's not like the right has ever lacked for any of those.)

One particular bit I certainly didn't hear about in 2008 was the part where Palin thought the head of government in England was the queen and not the prime minister (which is the exact moment Steve Schmidt starts to get a glimpse at what he's gotten the campaign into, and help me if I couldn't but pity the man a little). It's so outrageous my initial reaction was that HBO must have made it up, but apparently they did confirm it with Schmidt, although some are disputing it since Palin had named Thatcher as one of her idols before the conversation took place -- although I for one have no problem imagining Palin had heard of Thatcher as a beloved conservative icon but had no real idea what her actual position was or entailed. She didn't know what her OWN job was going to entail!

Anyway, I liked it, and would recommend it if you have any interest at all in political drama.

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Thursday, November 24th, 2011
2:10 am - dammit Ace Attorney
Back when I first found TVTropes, in 2008, one of the first series I wound up checking out just because of its ubiquity there was Ace Attorney. Playing just the first case of the first game was enough to make me an addict -- once "Cornered" started up (the soundtrack is legendary and with good cause) I realized I had found something special indeed. I've since played all of the games, and even Professor Layton and Ghost Trick just because they're supposedly in the same universe or are due for a crossover.

(Prefer Layton to Ghost Trick, but prefer AA to both.)

The games are great. They are over-the-top and funny, but with a genuine pathos as well. The music is superb and the animations are hilarious. Even the localization is fantastic -- I know we like to preserve subtleties that don't carry over in English, but the AA series does a really great job of finding an equivalent joke that simply would not survive the translation. You don't feel like you've missed anything.

Capcom has no plans to translate the newest Investigations game, which has quite large number of people feeling disappointed. Including people like me, who know nothing of Japanese. We wind up getting so desperate we download untranslated roms, look up walkthroughs, and start painstakingly transferring all of the symbols into an online translator just to get the vaguest of vague ideas of what's going on.

After a week or so of that I went hunting to see if I could find any ripped text files, as it's ridiculously easy for me to screw up so many symbols -- although I did get better at it. Looking up kanji by radicals was almost impossible at first, but after I'd done it over 1,000 times I actually started recognizing the relevant parts. I don't have either the katakana or hiragana alphabet memorized, although I can tell the difference between the two, and between them and kanji.

But trying to translate even the littlest, tiniest bit of the script makes me feel like I'm getting away with something. There's something irresistible about it, so I keep on plugging away..

Anyway I like Edgeworth just fine (it's his game I'm translating!) but my favorite prosecutor is and will forever be Godot. I find myself missing Phoenix, though... especially after Apollo Justice. ...Sigh.

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Wednesday, August 31st, 2011
6:04 pm - recognizing a face on a Dateline special
Every now and again I remember -- mostly just because I can't forget -- this one time my parents were watching some special broadcast about youths who'd voluntarily run off to the streets to sleep in abandoned buildings and under bridges, do a lot of coke and heroin while having unprotected sex and otherwise drastically lower their life expectancy.

They interviewed a few. I recognized one -- to my absolute horror. I hadn't just known her. She'd been a friend.

Her name was China and I knew her for the brief three years I spent in Tigard, attending Templeton Elementary. She had thick, dishwater blonde hair she liked to wear in a braid, was a little bit strange and one of the few kids I was actually slightly more athletic than. We rode the same bus home and every day I watched it drop her off at her house, which had a large fenced field with animals in the back. The China interviewed on the program also talked about being from Tigard and having grown up with horses. That was what convinced me there was scarcely any chance I somehow was confusing her with a different China, from Tigard (which ain't all that huge a suburb) who had grown up with horses.

I wish I remember more details about the program... mostly I wish I remember more about her. We moved from Tigard to Hillsboro when I was in third grade. I know I talked to her on the phone at least once after the move, but after that, we kinda broke off communication. I have this horrible -- what if I'd been there? Would it have made a difference in her life?

If I'm moving back to Tigard... and I am, next month... is there any chance I'll see her? Or is she far away? Is she dead?

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Thursday, July 14th, 2011
12:52 am - meander
If you ask for my forgiveness, you're pretty much guaranteed to get it.

Just acknowledge you wronged me. Acknowledge my personhood to the extent that I did not deserve what you gave me, when it was under your power to serve me better.

I can hate arrogance and cruelty but not humanity and fallibility. I've wronged others myself -- and much wrong that is done is in thoughtlessness and ignorance rather than malice. Anyone who has the humility to see past their own ego has my respect. I won't hold others to a higher standard than I hold myself.

I'm not sure that's very "Scorpio" of me. Ah, Astrology. The temptation of the forbidden but the scorn of many enlightened. Too embarrassing to own up to. Too (often eerily) reassuring to denounce. Astrology for good or ill has become one of the major frameworks for my vision of reality. It is not omniscient. It does not dictate behavior. All it is, is the idea that patterns recognizable in the heavens will find their reflections on the doings of beings on earth.

It's laughably arbitrary when you look at how ignorant we were when we devised it. The sun going round the earth. Planets in "Retrograde". Missing planets. Missing signs if you look hard enough. No, I don't acknowledge Ophiuchus and the "revelation" was a few centuries out of date. The whole hullabaloo was about embarrassing astrologers in the first place. But the idea of people being moved into different signs as ages passed has been duly considered, and it drives the concept of "Ages". As in, the Age of Aries, Age of Pisces, Age of Aquarius.

It's just that it doesn't really matter. "Believing" in Astrology affects me in no real way except it gives me a reason to think life "makes sense if you look back at it." Doesn't make me believe in things that aren't real. Doesn't make me disrespect science. I want to be a biological researcher. I will not be looking to the stars for my test answers.

Back to Scorpio. Supposedly it has three aspects, through the contemptible and pathetic gray lizard, the powerful and dangerous scorpion to the heroic and formidable eagle. My Aries brother laughs and says "I've found that Scorpios are easy to deal with. Just don't piss them off."

I'm not really looking to get pissed off and I have no desire to hold a grudge for the sake of holding a grudge.

I'm not sure how "Scorpio" should respond to people who ask forgiveness but I can tell you Shannon Nicole, with sun and Mercury in Scorpio is generally moved by the very notion of asking forgiveness and has been wildly grateful on the occasions it has been granted her herself.

Still, for those who don't repent I don't forgive. I have it in me to forgive, but you have to have it in you to be forgivable. You know? Everyone has that in them, but some don't embrace it. My sister is one. I've "forgiven" her so many times and she's always come back like it's owed her. Forgiveness is precious because it's given voluntarily. Right?

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Thursday, July 7th, 2011
10:40 pm - It's supposed to be funny
We have a giant whiteboard on the wall between the kitchen and the dining area. Yesterday after an argument was taking place on both sides of the TV as two other disgruntled people were just trying to watch a damn movie, I wrote on the board:

FAMILY HAS GONE
0 DAYS
WITHOUT A SHOUTING MATCH


Racked it up to 1 today.

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6:01 am - "You leave me no choice. Here comes the smoulder."
One thing I've discovered about my sense of taste is that, sometimes, it isn't any overall level of quality that makes or breaks a work. Something can be terrible in numerous aspects and will nonetheless capture my imagination and turn into a lifetime favorite (though often a guilty pleasure), because of just one element that triggers something. Then there is that which is overall competent, even better than average, which I can consume and enjoy and then largely forget about.

I've watched Tangled a couple times and it's thus far managed to crawl up pretty far on that list of Disney Movies That I Like, No Really. A lot of it is just Okay. So Okay, It's Average in Troperese.

The female protagonist is mostly genuine enough for me, only a little bit saccharine. The male lead has some of the most hilarious facial expressions ever. The score is alright. The animation is pretty.

But the villain...

Mother Gothel creeps me the hell out. Her brand of manipulation just hits a little too close to home. (Her Broadway singing voice gives me the shivers, too.) Ohoho, I'm just teasing. Every time you think you get a compliment, it's snatched away from you in place of an insult, but there's no outlet for that insult, because they're Just Joking and you're Taking It All Too Seriously. You feel bad and then you have to feel bad about feeling bad, because that's just one more indication of how helpless and unprepared for the Real World you are.

Yet YOU are never the victim. She is. "Great. Now I'm the bad guy." To the child she kidnapped. Simultaneously ironic and insidiously true to life. She can be over-the-top hammy like the best of them, but that's a subtlety I can more then believe in.

I can't for a moment believe that woman didn't know exactly what she was doing -- tearing down a child's self-esteem for her own selfish purposes. Yet the movie leaves it open what exactly she felt for Rapunzel, who she'd raised as her own. Clearly, she thought of her less as a person than as a MacGuffin, but she didn't seem to hate her, maybe she even enjoyed her company, in her own cruel way. Did she believe her own rhetoric, that the world was a cruel and selfish place filled with horrible people (so she was too afraid to share the flower, lest it be stolen?) Was she simply a hypocrite?

I might not know any immortal sorceresses, but I've met her like just the same. Eeeesh.

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Tuesday, July 5th, 2011
7:34 am - Don't You Know I'll Only Let You Down
Despite being a loner -- mostly by choice -- every now and again I somehow incidentally attract some female fan. Younger than me, a little bit giggly, innocent enough to be deserving of protection and sweet and intelligent enough to be worthy of nurturing.

I'm flattered in part, but the other part just wants to run screaming into the night.

Can't you understand I'll only break your heart?

Have you ever been "the smartest girl in class" and up at the chalkboard against a boy while all your female classmates look at you like -- AUGH!!!! -- you will prove something to them. You are not YOU. You are Potential Female Worth, Personified.

So no pressure there, sure.

There has been at least one instance I've felt I lost because of that pressure. I heard the guys talking about it afterward. "Wow." "Nah, she wasn't all that." Fuck you. I hate that guy forever. I could have won, I know it. Sometimes I've just lost legitimately. "You're going down!" while racing. "Get her!" in air hockey. I lost to those guys. I didn't mean to. But at some point it did turn into male vs. female and that, I think, paralyzes me in a way.

These girls that look up to me, I weep for them and I do so all the more if somehow, every other influence actually is worse. I'm responsible, I'm incapable and I'm...

Terrified.

Not to mention screwed up. You seriously, seriously do not want me for a role model.

One of my earliest memories is of the guy in kindergarten who literally broke my arm because I dared to charge -- where no other girls would -- into the "boys only" Jungle Gym.

I was one of only two students in an entire school to win a math award, the other being a guy (of course!).

I'll do... what I can. I suppose. May whatever powers that be save me.

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Monday, May 23rd, 2011
11:35 pm - also why I don't play poker
I'm getting a little frustrated with my face --

-- that I am always hearing people tell me what I am feeling or thinking about because it's written there. Yes, that's a bit unusual of a complaint to follow "I'm a little frustrated with my face," but oddly one that could be helped as much by Botox as the other.

Granted, it's not all that accurate. I was once told I "lit up" about something that I'd been deliberately BSing. (The thought process wasn't "oh! I love this so much!" but "oh! I thought of the perfect plausible escape!") Sometimes I get "I can't tell what you're thinking, but I can tell you're thinking something," which is kind of ridiculous. It could be that I'm thinking about lunch. "Inscrutable" in that context does not necessarily mean "meaningful". Sometimes it actually is complicated, though.

Actually I'm not sure this bothers me for its own sake seeing as I'm not really interested in professions or relationships where a lack of facial subtlety would be a serious issue, so much as I'm tired of hearing about it. It's always in this well-meaning but patronizing "oh-you're-so-adorable" context that makes me want to grind my teeth.

Why can't they read that expression?

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Sunday, May 15th, 2011
1:16 am - Well, I, er.... passed, at least
I'm not really happy with the way this all went down.

I mean, I like this subject. And I was expecting it to be hard. I was prepared to grind. Given that I am reasonably intelligent (if we do indeed take that as a given), I don't think we can say there was some kind of serious problem on my side of the equation.

Yet I don't like whining over it either. Despite how justified I feel I am in my dissatisfaction with the professor, which was absolutely universal among the class, the attempts to go over the specifics sound like excuses just the same. Such as that he was both disorganized and impatient, meaning he'd explain things in a haphazard fashion, often doubling back on himself to go over steps in a sequence that he forgot, and would then sigh at people who stumbled over the same steps. But big deal. It still feels like, if I tried my absolute best I should have been able to get an A.

Well, I got a C. A low C.

I know there were at most exactly two people who managed to get a B, depending on their last grade, and no one who received an A. Quite a few Ds and probably a couple Fs, and more people like me in the C range. Oh yes, plus the 60% of the class that dropped. (That was our lab class, which went from about 20 to eight. His other class was down to four by semester's end. So the class portion went from 40 to 12.) I gave serious consideration to joining their ranks as I was on the border and a D was functionally the same as an F in terms of qualifying for the next Biology class, but I stuck to it in part because I did not want yet one more thing in my past I had not seen through to completion and in part because I ran it past the people who actually financed it and they advised me to see it through to "the perhaps bitter end."

(I wouldn't actually mind taking the class again, so long as it was with anyone else excepting perhaps Zombie Hitler or Jack Chick, but there wasn't much point to tanking my somewhat surprisingly decent GPA for no gain creditwise.)

I had expected to be relieved when I finally got my verdict in and got the best possible outcome I knew had been possible by that point, but after the initial rush I found myself experiencing that sense of totally impotent resentment, that this was the better outcome.

Blah blah and yes I know. I've eaten Cs and not cared. Usually I get that grade because I didn't care. Going off on a "I'm going to build a better me!" trip and getting a C in the subject I hope to major in bums me out.

(Jeez, this journal hasn't been a very cheery place lately. Sorry guys.)

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Sunday, April 17th, 2011
10:54 am - ...and then the tornado hit.
A tornado! A fucking tornado! Jesus it's like when I start to complain about my life getting shitty something friggin' spectacularly horrible immediately has to happen just to make me look like a petty whiner.

Actually, though, we weren't more than inconvenienced for a while. We were scared, the road in front of the apartment was blocked by a fallen tree for a while, and we lost power for about 16 hours (I was really surprised it was that fast. They'd been telling us it should be days, and with crazy-awful damage we saw had happened to local power lines, I thought that seemed optimistic). If we'd been two blocks away things might have been a lot worse. I saw trees crashed into power lines, one power line ripped clean in half, the line still suspended with the broken half hanging below it, hundred-years-old trees pulled up clean to their roots, and hundreds of thousands of dollars in property damage -- most from trees crashing into structures, but in a few cases roofs had been ripped off. This was in a drive perhaps three miles total, and I don't think we got anywhere close to the worst areas.

I still can't talk. We're going on three days now.

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Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010
6:18 am - Do you ever get done "finding yourself"?
Don't tell me how to be
'Cause I like some suffering
Don't ask me what I need
I'm just fine out finding me...


It took forever, but I'm back on the school path. It is the slow path. It is the long path. It is the "what the hell were you doing in all the adjoining years but complete crap" path. It is the right path.

Or well... it's the path I'm going.

The hardest thing is this idea that there isn't a "right" path. There may be a better or worse path but right... naaah! I think maturity is knowing you're not gonna know the absolutes. You have make your peace with that. You have to...

At some point the only thing you can do is trust yourself. That's what's scary. You have to face that people you respect won't always agree with you. You have to navigate through ambiguity knowing you'll never be able to know the results of the alternative paths you chose not to take.

It's all so fucking trite. It's all so inevitable. There is nothing new under the sun. You can't be totally original. All you can be is real.

Philosophy aside, I'm majoring in Biology. Yeah, changed major. Have to take more math. This is gonna be hard going, much harder than I'd originally set out to do. This stuff fascinates me though, and I think there's more career opportunities in it than any kind of liberal arts major.

I'm online a lot but terrible at updating Facebook and LJ. I'm at TvTropes a ridiculous amount of time. That site... damn. It's not even a diversion any more, it's like a friggin' cult.

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Sunday, September 27th, 2009
1:58 am
The Gender Genie often seems to peg me as male -- especially when I'm being dramatic. The more "overblown" I feel myself to be, the more masculine I wind up. The more angsty I try to be, the more feminine. I find it terribly amusing.

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