Happy Birthday Kate. Kate has managed to be the only member
of my nuclear family
without a web page. She is also the youngest. Coincidence?
Please remember, eager holiday freakos, that Easter is only really a holiday for those who believe in Jesus, the resurrection, bad grammar ["he is risen"??] and so forth. According to recent data, this is maybe 50% of the US. Kindly remember this when I am trying to buy my airline tickets from you and you insist on wishing me a Happy Easter. It's like saying Happy Superbowl, it quickly becomes inane and meaningless out of context.
But I did buy airline tickets, to go visit Greg and help him pack and scoot out before his cable modem turns off and I have to get back to work. The next big plan is to go to Vermont in mid-may, meeting Greg and the caretaker there and embark on a short East Coast road trip before settling in for the summer. Come August, who knows? Tomorrow, I may manage to get to the Center for Wooden Boats early enough to actually get in on the free boat ride they do every Sunday. Last week I missed it by at least ten minutes, maybe 30. If I blow it again though, there's always the open-to-the-public library [pictured] to hang out in with a view of Lake Union and all the free coffee you can drink. Know any other good microlibraries in Seattle? Let me know.
Note to society at large: it may make me an elitist snob, but I do not have a TV nor did I seek one out this past weekend. I encourage you to donate five dollars to Oxfam
every time you utter the words "Gwynneth's dress" Thank you.
Learned something today, maybe a few things. Got up early for another in a series of endless dental appointments. This time I thought I was going in for a cleaning and wound up actually being there for a filling. Had I known about the filling -- being the big sissy that I am -- I would have fretted all night and not enjoyed anything I did after maybe 4 pm yesterday. As it was, I had a great time winning and at least placing at bar trivia and only felt bad when I was in the chair saying "A what? I thought I was here for a cleaning?" It's rare that I understand what people mean when they say there are things they'd rather not know about. However, I was already strapped in with the mouth-obscuring dental dam by the time I remembered that I was trying not to put any more mercury/silver in my mouth. Too late, watch my mind deteriorate.
Then off to the post office. I went to mail a package. I have been trying to learn the precise combination of phrases that will actually let the post office folks tell me the lowest possible price for sending my box without trying to upsell me to priority mail, sell me any stamps, or tell me I can use my credit card if I want to. I pretty much nailed it today "I want to know the lowest price for mailing this and I don't care how long it takes." The post office guy was visibly agitated when I said I didn't want priority mail, even if it was only a dime more. I said I had stuff in mind for that dime. I then asked him why they had two price points so close together, if it made them do the extra work of saying "You know, for only a dime more...." like some used car salesman. He told me that the Post Office is trying hard to send more and more stuff -- epsecially small stuff -- via air mail when at all possible. Using fewer trucks and less fuel and becoming a lean mean capitalist machine [those are my words, natch]. However, he added, the post office didn't want to tell anyone what to do, so while they would strongly encourage everyone never to use parcel post for small packages again, they are powerless to mandate you doing so.
I got my boots resoled
again. It was expensive, but I realized I haven't bought a pair of new shoes in over a decade. Are there any American-made sneakers anymore? I need a pair. A lot going on this week. For those of you who didn't see the slightly buried link from Saturday, here's some large image files of the article in Library Journal
that I was in:
When Todd and I headed to the library to take a few pictures, who knew it would be getting this much exposure? I've actually known the woman who wrote the article -- Marylaine Block -- for some time and I thought she did a pretty good job of explaining what I'm all about. It's unnerving to be pegged so accurately; of course I like to think I'm inscrutable.
Meanwhile I'm reading this book called The Assertive Librarian. It was written in the early eighties, has no fun illustrations to scan, and generally has convinced me that I straddle the line between assertive [where you stick up for yourself but do not infringe on the rights or beliefs of others] and aggressive [like the other only you tend towards trampling over the poor other people]. I'm not sure if this personality led me to my political beliefs or if the political beliefs delivered me to this personality. Reading the book just made me more and more grateful to not be working in a library or other excessive hierarchy, even though I pine for the reference desk some days.
Tonight Chris comes over and we try, for the third time for me, to get these blasted i-opener appliances up and running with some variant of Linux. The task involves some sort of BIOS flash, booting from a teeny Linux disk image, and some mojo hand. Anyone ever successfuly done this?
Okay, the pictures from my trip
-- all fifty of them -- are finally up with some sort of a narrative. Missing due to low batteries are any shots from the wrestling match which was probably the most photogenic of any of threse events, any shots of my friends except one of Pete
, looking blurry, and my trip to Berkeley. I especially think you would have enjoyed watching me cup up boxes full of icicle radishes
but it was not to be. Then on Saint Patrick's Day, a holiday I normally avoid
, I saw Saint Bushmills Choir
, self-proclaimed "drunken Irish band from Capitol Hill" play at Graceland. They had a bagpipe band opening for them which was really awe inspiring in that tiny space. If I ever get married again, I want the choir to play at my wedding. It's weird going to a show in Seattle after all the bars and clubs in San Francisco where smoking is completely outlawed. It seemed like a poisoned basement, more than usual.
Our trivia master from the Monday night trivia session is moving to NYC next month so next week is his last week. They may be getting someone else, but it won't be the same. This means 1) anyone who wanted to join me at bar trivia should come next week and 2) if there are other good bar trivia nights in Seattle someone should let me know. This week we won $28 and a lot of little plastic butterflies and animals.
I yelled at a Girl Scout
today. I had just gotten back from SFO
and was making my way home on the bus, a process that takes about 90 minutes. At one point I transferred to another bus and had to stand at a stop for about 15 minutes. This is where the trouble began. First off, it was snowing. Secondly, there were a whole gaggle of chirpy Girl Scouts
right at the bus stop. They would jump up and down and holler at people and try to get them to buy tons of bad-for-you expensive goodies
in the name of some sort of girl-loving
philanthropy. I don't think this approach helps anyone. Let me add that I quit Girl Scouts
in the third grade when it became clear that I would have to sell overpriced junk food
to strangers or be ostracized by my peers. Let me also add that I suspect this was my first introduction to my own anti-capitalist
philosophies. I mean, we were supposed to sell cookies that we did not bake for an unknown amount of profits
[the rest of the money going back to the mothership, I presume] and the money
we did "earn" would be spent on who-knows-what, certainly not getting to shoot guns which is what the cool Boy Scouts
got to do. At the bus stop, people would actually apologize as these twelve year olds got in their way "No, I already have some, sorry" As if it's everyone's patriotic duty to introduce girls to the joys of a pseudo-free market economy. They were even squeaking "we only have to sell two more!" as if their Girl Scout
mom, also in attendance, was peddling their freezing asses to make some fictional quota. Anyhow, they came up to me twice, the first time I told them I would prefer to be left alone, the second time I believe I started my reply with "I'm not playing with you, step off...."
But I did manage to get home. Here is the bullet pointed list to the rest of my week. Photos coming soon.
That's it. One burrito per day. Three books read [almost]. Sights seen, and libraries visited. It was a good trip; I'm already planning my next one. While I was away, I started getting famous, again.
12mar02 . . . . .
oh the places you'll go
is tonight! The club where they're playing has perhaps the worst website imaginable
, combined with the fact that their so-called info line just rings and rings plus the fact that their listing in the paper said the show was last
night and, well, I'm ready to be banging my head a bit.
Today's tip is about coffee. If you're like me and you like your coffee strong, do yourself a favor and spring for the $2 and go out for your java if the only coffee apparatus your gracious hosts have is a french press. Despite the fact that french presses tend to make coffee on the stronger side, adding "just a bit more" coffee for that high octane feeling you know and love can -- when pressing time comes, as it always will -- lead to high pressure coffee ejection and, sometimes, first degree burns. Do not ask me how I know this, just patronize your local coffee joint once in a while.
San Francisco is too fun to be sitting around typing, so here's a short list of some things I've done:
Today I think I'll be meandering around with a pal of my sister's
before heading to the SoMa district to rock out with the band. I have so far managed to eat a burrito every single day.
09mar02 . . . . .
happy birthday to you
08mar02 . . . . .
and I hell ain't got no teefus
I'm going to San Fran tomorrow. Yesterday it snowed. And when I say "snowed", for all your East Coasters, I mean there was like three to five inches on the ground when I went to bed. Today, schools were closed, one of the higways was closed and when I got to the dentist -- thinking myself all smart in choosing the first appointment of the day -- almost no one was there yet. I enjoyed driving my Vermont-licensed car up a solid hill of ice and imagining flipping off all the usually-annoying private schoolkid moms cowering at home in their SUVs.
I also met a dentist/hygienist combo that I really liked. The hygienist was from China or Korea and was super-friendly. She had to take an interminable amount of x-rays [pictured] which was pesky but not really painful. Every time I would spit out another piece of exposed film from where it had been jammed under my tongue she'd cheer me on "You a good girl, you a great patient." Not like I was doing anything exceptional, but I like being cheered on when I'm at the dentist, since I just plain hate going so much. The dentist was younger than me and was puzzled by this weird stripe she saw on the back of one of my front teeth. I told her it was from the bands on my braces. This puzzled her "Well, you don't get bands on your front teeth with braces, just the back teeth, the front teeth have little brackets glued on" I assured her I had had bands on my front teeth, all my teeth in fact. I could see she was having a hard time deciding whether to completely accuse me of outright lying or question me further. "Well they haven't used those kinds of braces for over twenty years..." to which I replied "Yeah I know, I got mine on in 1979" To this day I can still vividly recall the smooth smooth feeling of the inside of my mouth when I got my braces taken off and my teeth felt like they were made out of butter.
Our bar trivia team won three  straight pitchers of beer this week. And, last but not least, it's International Womens Day today and Global Chick Month for all of March. Not to be confused with the ridiculous American Woman's Day. Do you think this font makes my butt look big? Tell your favorite female how much you adore them today!
04mar02 . . . . .
rocking out with the band? me?
It's been a while since I've been a live music fan. I like music an awful lot, but I often find that live music isn't as satisfying to me as, say, listening to the one CD I love
fifteen times in a row every day for a week. There's some deep-rooted issue I have about disliking change, so I get used to the song on the album
and then am not ready to hear the song live. Plus standing around with a plastic cup of beer for three hours just isn't as entertaining as it used to be. Smokey clothes
are likewise a more troubling issue than they were in my twenties. My wardrobe is the same, I just like it to smell better.
That all changes though, when Bloodhag is in town. They are an educore band -- perhaps the only educore band -- whose entire oeuvre consists of 90 second songs about sci fi authors. During their show they ham it up, quizzing the audience about what they've been reading, threatening to send hecklers to the corner with a dunce cap, hucking books pell mell into the audience, etc. I counted two other librarians in the audience besides me. My friend Dawn got a special wink from the lead singer because she knew that Shelley's eyes had been eaten by fish. My kind of crowd. It was so much fun, we even chatted the band up afterwards and stayed to see Apes of Wrath a sort of psychocore band who also rocked.
I'll be in San Francisco next week cat sitting for friends who are going to SXSW. I did this last year because I was living in an apartment with no heat, and getting out of town was so much fun, I decided to make it a yearly vacation. So, I'll be in the Mission, if anyone wants to hang out or come eat burritos with me drop a note.
02mar02 . . . . .
when worlds collide
I am guest curating over at The Mirror Project
There's a general joke that Greg and I have about the different planets we live on. He and I have a lot in common and yet we perceive certain things such as time and the influence of other people somewhat differently. This results in a lot of gentle rejoinders like "well, I know on Planet Greg we have plenty of time, but the bus is leaving in five Planet Jessamyn minutes..." We each pretty much get to set relative standards according to who is visiting whom. Lately we've been talking more about spending more time in one place together. I say "more" rather than "all" because even a fine fella like Greg won't really be able to stop me entirely from scooting back and forth, though I'd try to take him with me. At any rate, besides dealing with the newness of being able to call each other for free, visit at will [and for short periods of time, even] and getting to stay in one place without always being five feet from each other will be the compression of two home bases into more like one. Again, we won't be living together, at first, but we will be subjectively experiencing the same stimuli [weather, media, events] for a while. As someone who hasn't had a non-long-distance boyfriend in a while, this is a new situation to find myself in.
At the moment though I'm experiencing the very underwhelming sensation of a lack of apointments, a lack of activity and a lack of companionship which just makes me generally somewhat tired and interested in tea and naps and books again. This has been a whirlwind few weeks, I almost can't imagine keeping up this pace if Greg were to be more nearby. Although if he were in Seattle more often, I guess I wouldn't have to.