Thursday, January 27, 2011

A study in mustaches: a companion piece.

The only one I bothered to do in Paint.

Ladies' Room - Now with more facial hair!

Cabana girl

Gangstaaaa yo

"Hi, my name is Kurt.  Paper or plastic?"

This isn't mine, I got it whilst trolling the intertubes.  Puns are funny.
Not a mustache, just a FACKIN WEREWOLF!
If you hadn't noticed, I really don't have much to write about this week.  Except Doctor Who.  That's the only thing I've had time to do, watch Doctor Who.  It's like tasty British crack covered in sprinkles and sci-fi.  I know I'm super late to the whole Who-verse (not to be confused with the Who-verse in Dr. Seuss, an equally good if not nearly as cool Doctor.) but I'm trying to catch up.  And simultaneously defend my love for the Doctor in Season One (the 9th doctor, if you didn't know).  No one seems to like him as much as the later Doc, but whatevs.  It's not like they're super wrong or anything.


That's not an opinion, that's fact, too.  MY FACT.  CAUSE I AM INFALLIBLE.

Just sayin'.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Known Only As They.

The man opens up his over-sized coat and brings out an overtly large umbrella.  It shines bright yellow against the gunmetal grey of our surroundings. He shakes it out while we are still somewhat covered by the awning of the building.  He gestures to me to join him under the umbrella, but I only scowl and walk away.  He jogs to keep up with me.

"Where are we going?" he asks when we are side-by-side.

"I know a man that specializes in rogue mechanics.  You know that car, Christine?"

"Steven King? Yeah."

"That was cake for him."  I speed up as we cross a bridge.  The houses grow closer, suffocatingly near.

"What do you mean, cake?" the man said, puzzled.  "Christine was a fictional car."

"That's what they want you to think," I say lowly, skirting a steel drum fire on a street corner.

"Well now, who's 'they?'"  He nearly collides with me as I stop in front of a gloomy stoop, the facade worn as a ship battered by the salty sea.

"They don't want their secrets being known," I reply.  I reach up to press the buzzer, the name on the plate worn beyond recognition.  I knew that years ago, when the place had been bright and new, the name read only 'They'.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Underwater Mystery Theatre 3000

Dun dun


Herp Derp!


*Swish swish*







*Scuba Jr.! For the smallest of underwater adventurers!*

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Movies. MOVIES.

I cannot stop watching them.  But they all invariably lead back to the eighties.  To The Breakfast Club, mostly, which I am watching as we speak.  It's like John Hughes is Harry Potter, and all movies after about 2003 are Voldemort and he has to DESTROY THEM IN THEIR WRONGNESS!  But he can't lose, you know he can't lose.  He's JOHN HUGHES.  Ferris Bueller? Pretty in Pink?  Come on 21st century, you need to work a little harder.  You're never gonna win at this point.  Judd Nelson will strangle you with his flannel first.
Well, maybe not.

But I watched The Princess Bride first.  I can't just watch one old movie, I have to watch a string of them, like how you can't just eat one potato chip. I hadn't watched The Princess Bride for a while, and I was shocked to find that I was a little teary eyed throughout it.  I mostly adhere to the belief that once you watch a movie enough times you are no longer shocked by it, but apparently for this one I was wrong. It's still touching.
Adventure, murder, AND true love? Inconceivable!
I was born pretty firmly in the 1990's, and even I know that the quality was better back then.  Most movies today are remakes of older movies/TV shows/comics.  I've either seen the original or the prequel to almost everything in the theatre nowadays.  That's not cool, you guys.

Plus, the music!  That awesome quintessentially 80s music.  It made me love something from that era that wasn't hair metal (I blame you, Dad!).  Music from John Hughes movies = love.  That's just a fact.


I've been distracted by The Breakfast Club again.  So here, mostly for my entertainment.  I give you my friend and I playing dress-up:
It's Bender.  PRETTY GOOD, EH?
My friend's Claire.  She's...she's so sweet *sniffles* to indulge my craziness like this...
 * FIN *

Thursday, January 13, 2011

My teachers and exercise habits.

I had my first Math recitation today, which is a fancy name for 'Just another math class that you have to take.'  It was on the Fourth Floor of the scariest building I have ever been in.  The Fourth Floor itself was dark and quiet, bits of drywall leaning by the elevator as I got off.

I did the math.  I walk, on average, about five miles a day.  I deserved to take the elevator.

I finally found my way to the room, and I sat and waited for class to start.

And I waited.

And I waited.

And the room filled up slowly.  And the teacher came in.

And he looked like this.

Okay, maybe not that exactly.  I have no way of knowing whether or not he's a samurai in his spare time.  But it made math more enjoyable.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

They look like happy cacti

Since I woke up this morning (round 7:30) it has been snowing.  And not like a little drizzle of snow.  Or flurry.  Whatever.

For the past twelve hours I have seen my feet and then ankles disappear beneath the flakes.  My shins were slowly taken over by frozen water.  My sock monkey hat did nothing to protect me from the wet downpour, for that's what it was.  I became a wildlife expert, tracking the footprints of the various wildlife that lives here.  I trudged through the blizzard and went to class, all the same.

On my way to piano I spotted some birds hopping on the ground as they are wont to do.  I scared them away and looked down to see if they had left footprints on the light dusting of snow that had been left since the last brave person had crossed this sidewalk.

These footprints make me happy
I think this discovery was the highlight of my day.

Ah, college.

My Physics discussion leader has a hat like Indiana Jones.

my Physics professor is female.

My Math teacher is German.

My Piano teacher is Russian.

My Japanese sensei is, well, Japanese.

One of my friends is Chilean/German/Italian.

I can eat almost any kind of ethnic food I could ever want, at any time of the day.

I can go to the museum that is ten minutes away (seven if I walk fast).

I can see a show at one of the three or four auditoriums ON CAMPUS.  That's not counting the ones 'round Kirkwood.

If I had my druthers (and it wasn't snowing) I could sit by the wall of the art museum and stare as colors are painted across it by a lit totem.

It's pretty sweet.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The transition.

Yesterday for breakfast I had a Super Omelet.  Two eggs, some onion fried up in olive oil, tasty mystery herb from the bottom drawer of our fridge, three kinds of cheese, and some tomatoes with jalapenos.  To add to the awesome I had biscuits. Good biscuits, too.  Then I packed up my stuff for a leisurely drive up to Bloomington.  All was well.

Today for breakfast I had a choice between granola bars, pop tarts, or microwaveable oatmeal.  There is something wrong here.

I could have gone to the food court, but it was closed. My room mate said it would open today, though. 

I did not eat breakfast.  I was too sad.  So instead I decided to search out my classes.  I never like to be late, no matter what I happen to be doing, and especially not to my first day of classes.  There's a certain amount of embarrassment in that that I cannot deal with.  So I walked around till noon, finding buildings with names like Swain West.

I walked back to my room, barely able to feel my various appendages.  I walked to the front doors of my building carefully, since it seemed that a bunch of birds decided to have a Seed-eaters Anonymous meeting last night and they forgot to bring Port-o-Potties, or whatever those are actually called.

By the time I got there, successfully avoiding the bodily emissions, I was starving.  I thought to myself, "Surely the food court will be open, it's already noon!"

The food court, even the C-Store downstairs, did not open till three in the afternoon, I was told by a convenient sign taped to the doors.  I stared at the sign dejectedly before heading back to my room.

For lunch I ate soup.  Microwaved soup.  For dinner I will probably eat microwaved mac and cheese.  If I didn't think it would be too awkward I'd bring my own bag of potatoes, and if it wasn't against the rules I'd bring a crock pot.  But it is awkward and it is against the rules.

I would have gone to Kirkwood for lunch, but few of my friends are here, the ones that are are busy, and the ones that aren't busy live on the other side of campus or up a gigantic hill and have decided to be secluded today.

But classes start tomorrow and I have a lunch date with some friends.  So I'm not bitter.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Squirrels need coats too, picture version!


The foundation of a lasting friendship is awkward situations.

Mechanical pigeons were high on my list of untrustworthy mechanics, right up there with toasters.  I have yet to come across a toaster that worked properly and I have developed a grudge.  Even the rumors about the pidgeons had solidified my distrust.

"You want to know how much it will take to find mechanical pidgeons?"  I stare at the mashed potatoes in the sink.

"Indeed I do."

"How much you got in your wallet?"  He pulls out a wallet that looks like it has seen better times. I grab it from him before he can open it.

"Maybe that's why you lost mechanical pidgeons," I scoff.  "You can't even keep a wallet."  I pull out a wad of cash before he can remove the cheap pleather from my hands.  "It will take this much," I say, stuffing the bills into my pocket.

"Seriously?  That's it?" he says, perplexed.  "You know this is of national importance, right?  A million dollar job at least?"

"It would give me no greater pleasure than to help out our government."  I sigh and turn back to the man.  He is looking at me.

"Your flier said you were the cheapest detective in the midwest but I didn't  believe it."  He turned and led himself to the door, and I wished it would be the last time I saw his face.  But these things never go my way.

He turns back to me.  "Are you coming?" he asks.  "We have some birds to locate."

We walk down twelve flights of stairs in awkward silence, the elevator having broken down weeks ago.  The man says with me the whole time, like a bad habit.  By the time we get to the lobby we are as close as best friends without the convenience of conversation.  We were more like cellmates.

When we walked out of the building it was raining.

"Fabulous," I say under my breath.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

This is real life, y'all

I am poised in front of the TV, shaking out my arms to loosen up.  Three of my friends stand beside me doing the same.  My brother is sitting in the chair, refusing to participate.

The four of us are staring intently at the screen, waiting for the little woman to begin dancing.  Our Wii remotes are grasped firmly in our hands.  The tension rises, like this is America's Got Talent and not my living room.  Suddenly, the beat to Le Freak by Chic begins and we start to flail around wildly, attempting to please the little animated dancer.  About thirty seconds in, I am convinced that the dancer is possessed.

We were not nearly this cool.

As the song ends and I finish in a spectacular fourth out of four, my brother hops up and chooses a classic, Louie Louie, as performed by Iggy Pop.  About halfway through he gives up, and slowly the rest of us die off as well.  Lame and gasping for breath, we decide that perhaps we should karaoke instead.  It uses less energy.

We threw Beatles Rock Band into the Wii and By the end of the night all five of us were screaming nigh incomprehensibly into the two microphones and my brother had transformed into George Thorogood for some reason.

We weren't nearly this cool either.

It was a good day.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

In memoriam: the feasts that will never be.

Soon I will have to return to IU, yet another institution that seems intent on educating me.  But, as fine and educational as IU might be, they leave me severly lacking in kitchen space and kitchen functionality.

I like to cook; it is one of my greatest joys.  I am good at it and I cook quite often while at home.  When I come home from school I sift through my mother's recipe books, of which there are dozens (many of which she has written over and changed, making her the Half Blood Prince of cooking), and I pick out one that I can make easily.  Normally this involves me changing a few (most) of the ingredients around to suit what I have on hand.  But somehow they all end up delicious like the chicken and bacon contraption I made tonight.

Oh yeah, you like that? Oh, you want a close up? I bet you do...

 And as the time of my departure grows near, I think about all of the meals that I will not have the good fortune to cook, and then I think about what kind of food I have to live on in college.

My sense of taste just threw itself off a tall building.
The only problem I'm really having with this transition back and forth is the excercise issue.  While at IU I am forced to walk to all of my classes which are normally at far corners of campus and a good fifteen or twenty minutes from my dorm.  Even if I eat crap food it doesn't matter since I walk it all off anyway.  Sometimes I am just too lazy to prepare anything even it is microwaveable. 

Then I come home where I can cook whenever I want and I have no need to walk anywhere.  I realized today that I was once again gaining weight and in a desperate attempt to shed a pound or so I did five push-ups (Impressive!), ten crunches (Practically Hulk!), and two miles on the treadmill, which lead to me having treadmill-feet for about ten minutes.  Not that it helped with the chicken and bacon.

I think it was the five push-ups that put me over the edge.


The man puts the graphs down and walks back to me.

"So. The carrier pigeons."  He shovels more mashed potatoes into his mouth.  "How much will it cost to retrieve them?  They're carrying some very sensitive information."

"How sensitive?" I ask, watching my mashed potatoes slowly disppearing, like the polar ice caps in twenty years.

"Top secret government stuff," he says vaguely.  "It was being delivered by carrier pigeon because we figured no one would guess that we would carry secrets of national importance using birds."

"Shocking," I say with a snort, "someone outsmarted a pigeon."  I wrestle the bowl of potatoes away from the man and dump it into the sink.  If I can't have any, no one can.  "Did ya ever think they just flew away?" I ask him.

"No, that thought never crossed my mind."  It had crossed mine already.  Like a friend I never should have hurt.  "You see, they are mechanical pigeons."

I stop and look at him.  Shadows cover most of his face.  "Robot pigeons?" I whisper.  I had heard rumors about robotic pigeons before but I had never taken them seriously.

"Yes ma'am, robot pigeons," the man responded.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Dangerous Pie Graph Makers

The man takes the potatoes and wanders around my office like a cat on the prowl.  I pour us both a bit of alcohol and pass one glass to him.

The last time I had dealings with birds the affair ended with a lot of feathers flying and a broken heart.  The woman I dealt with that time was a friend and even she didn't talk to me after that.  The seagull had been carrying love letters between her and her boyfriend but the bird and the man both decided to try their own hand at new love. No one ever saw the seagull again.

The man rifled through some of my papers, pie and bar graphs mostly.

"It's a handy thing," he opined after a large swallow of gin, "knowing how to make a good graph."  He pulled one out for reference, a nice one colored using different shades of purple.

"Handy like a knife in the back," I replied, putting down my glass.  "Some of my acquaintances are graph makers.  Most of them are dead now."


Nothing good happened today, so instead I give you dangerous graph makers.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Squirrels need coats too.

I find myself bundled up against the cold, walking back from my piano lesson.  It is cold in Bloomington this time of year, and the Indiana University campus is no exception. 

I shove my gloved hands into my pockets after I tighten my scarf around my face.  I pause for a moment at a stop sign to let a car pass, stomping my feet to warm them.  I cross quickly before a car accidentally runs me over and I continue up the sidewalk.  

A noise catches my interest and I look around for its source, and stop when I see a squirrel sitting in front of a building.  It has its arms crossed in front of it and it was shivering.  I stare intently at it.  It looks calmly back at me.  My brow furrows in concern.

"Yes, it's cold outside," I say to the squirrel.  I almost tell it to get a coat, but then I remember it is a squirrel.  I bite my tongue and continue on my way.

I still worry about that squirrel.  I mean, if he couldn't afford a coat for itself, how could it afford clothes for its little squirrel family? They're probably all sitting around their kitchen table having a budget meeting right now.

The night is dark and the lights are out. I lock the door to the office and make my way through the dark hallway.

This is it.  The inaugural post.  I am currently standing by my kitchen counter accompanied by a large bowl of mashed potatoes and a dirty spoon.  The door opens and a man walks in, trenchcoat wet from the pouring rain.  In a well-timed flash of lightning I see his face.  It is unfamiliar.  He walks up to me and takes the spoon, digging into the potatoes.

"How much does it cost to find a group of lost carrier pigeons?" he asks through a mouthful of food.

I reach down and grab a half-empty bottle of gin from near my feet.  It was going to be a long night.


But I digress.  If only my entire life was narrated like a cheap noir film.  Like Guy Noir on the Prarie Home Companion.  That would be nice.  It's not, but I can pretend like it is on here.

My mother, for some crazy reason, wants my entire family to write a blog.  Not her, of course; the rest of us should do it.  So I'm writing mine as if my life really were a noir film.  It will probably involve my college life as well, since that takes up most of my time, or reminiscences about my brother and I doing some ridiculous thing or other.

This should be exciting.