[my diary]
an occasional feature



garlic]I'm sick. Lots of people are sick lately. Riz dedicated some songs to all the people who are sick on KCMU last night and the Stranger had some special item of interest to sick people. To make matters worse, the plumbers are crawling around the Odd Fellows Hall and have shut off my water for going on 28 hours now... When I went into the hall to see what they were doing, they were mopping up puddles of rusty water from the carpet with the hall's dishtowels. I have been drinking a lot of fluids [considering that the nearest working toilet is in the basement and contrary to what people think, I do not live in the basement], I have just consumed way too much raw garlic, and I have devoted friends who have brought me fruit, frozen pizzas and juice. I am now off to the couch to read Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy which is about all my brain can handle. I have Don Delillo's new novel to attack once I'm up to snuff.

This just in from the plumbers: no water in my apartment until at least Monday, the hall should be fine by the party... When I was in Romania, I visited a town that only had water in the mornings and only had hot water every other morning. People flushed their toilets with pans of water taken from an always-full bathtub. I have water from my Brita pitcher.


[actual email I have received]

"Your Halloween party sounds like the best in town. I would love to go..."
"You are so organized and prompt, Jessamyn. I wanna party with you."
"Sounds like a real scary time.... Sooner or later, we'll get back to that frightening home of yours."


[the stinky cheese man]Today I was at the Northwest Bookfest volunteering. I spent three hours in the children's area dressing up as the Stinky Cheese Man [pictured at left], the Cat in the Hat, Madeline and Peter Rabbit. While it was sort of nice to get hugged by children for hours, the costumes were all stifling and there were always children pounding on my head, stealing my carrots or pulling my tail. While I was trying to keep my cat suit intact, the Cat in the Hat's hat fell off. Little did I know that this left the cat with a giant hole in the top of its head. I was wondering why people were snapping so many pictures. I spent the second three hours in the calvacade of words explaining to people why censorship sucks.


tock]Just as I am getting used to the idea of living in a tiny house in the middle of nowhere, I have one of those precious nights out where you run into everyone you know and everyone is doing something fun and invites you to go with them. This never happens to me in real life, but somehow happened tonight and of course, everyone was hipstering around and also saying "Gee, your barn sounds idyllic" just when I'm saying "I bet they don't have drag queens in West Topsham..."

Daylight savings time is today. This is the time you get an hour. Those of you with Windows 95 don't need me to tell you this. When I lived in Romania, daylight savings time came a few weeks early and it took me completely by surprise. I didn't even find out for a few days. Fortunately in Romania this did not matter.


Because of the snow, I had to let the mailbox installation wait until the thaw or the next time I'm in Vermont. I went to the West Topsham post office to admit defeat and rent a mailbox. I got box number 14. It cost $12 for the year. Still no espresso in sight, though I did have a mean grilled cheese at Nelson's [which is conveniently right next door to the post office].


I am in my new house in Vermont and it just stopped snowing. I haven't had any espresso since I left Seattle, though I was offered some in Boston. I have a caretaker named John who is looking for a place to live since his girlfriend left him for one of the guys in Phish. I have the last 25 years of the New Yorker in boxes in the milking shed and am on my way outside to put in a new mailbox.


[a lynx image] Today I taught a class at Seattle Public Library, Ballard Branch in how to find business information on the Internet. I, of course, thought it was going to be a complete disaster, because I was teaching using Lynx and my student ranged from folks who didn't know what WWW stood for to those with their compuers at home w/ email accounts and everything. There was also the ringer student who, when I asked for search suggestions wanted to look at census data, what fun with a text browser! It went okay and the librarian there seemed impressed with my skills. I just like any excuse to talk real loudly in a public library.

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[my pal joey] Today is my friend Joe's birthday. He is 29 and I have known him since we were both seventeen. I got him some Seven African Powers oil from a voodoo store in Jamaica Plain, MA for a gift which may seem weird, but he liked it. We went to the Alibi Room tonight to see Maktub [sic?] who were great, but all the incense made my eyes teary after a while.

Hey, only 19,000+ hours until the Millenium. Got plans yet?


from my mailbag...

Hello - My name is Rob, and I saw your picture on the web and am interested in meeting you. I live in Federal Way, and work for Boeing as a financial analyst. I am 43 years old, 6'2", 200, brown hair, blue eyes, mustache, and often told I am very handsome. I like boating, waterskiing, tennis, scuba, dining, dancing, massage, and romantic shared candlelight bubblebaths. My home number is 555-0707. Hope to hear from you.


Today I heard someone speak the sentence: "I had to relocate my salamander telemetry operations because the country western station was giving me interference" or something like that. Gotta love the Bigtime Brewery.


[my eye]

[the offending

How I Very Nearly
Stabbed Myself
in the Eye
with an Icepick

by Jessamyn West
age 29

First off, I only found the icepick yesterday. I had been waiting for the bus at Ken's house [it had taken me four busses to get there due to the weirdness with the U Bridge][I am taking the bus because I do not like to even try to park my unwieldy truck on the street anywhere] and I saw the icepick laying in the street. It's one of those newfangled icepicks with the plastic handle and since it didn't look like it had been used for sticking anyone recently, I put it in the side pocket of my knapsack. That was yesterday...

Today, if you haven't noticed, it's raining like a big dog out there. I was driving home from work and was so happy when I got home to not be on the road with Seattle's drive-slow-it's-raining minions that I jumped out of my truck, grabbed my knapsack and - gee it seemed to be stuck on something -- tugged on it a few times and >zik< the icepick I'd forgotten about came flying out from where it had been wedged between my knapsack and the dashboard directly towards my head and [thanks in part to my lightning fast reflexes due to extra caffeine rations] I ducked and it missed me.

[I am looking for a picture of an icepick, any ideas?]
[don't bother making suggestions, i just scanned my very own icepick!]


[big ol' bug] My kitchen is filled with fruit flies again. From this, I have deduced that tomatoes must be fruit, since they are the only thing in my kitchen the bugs seem to like.

The Bought the Farm party went off quite well, even though the farm wasn't actually bought until yesterday [and I only found out about it today thanks to the natural communicativeness of lawyers].

I just found out that I will get to walk around in some giant costume during the Northwest Bookfest! Oh yeah, and I'm participating in the Tenant's Union bowlathon to help raise money for this terrific grass roots organization that can answer all your landlord-tenant questions. Sponsor me, even a penny a pin will help..


esteemed J C Whitney Catalog] Please come to the Bought the Farm Party tonight, even if somehow you didn't receive an offical invitation...Here's a list of what I bought for it: 3 pumpkins [bought small pumpkins, but was charged mini-pumpkin price!], apple juice [they don't seem to have cider like I'm used to out here], Triscuits, Tostitos, pistachios, weird orange Hostess snack cakes, candy pumpkins, bananas, apples [granny smith and delicious], ranch dip, Little Debbie snack cakes, raspberry lemonade, crunch mini-donuts, Blue Moon pumpkin ale and garlic lover's salsa.

On a related note, I seem to be dreaming a lot lately, which I hadn't noticed I wasn't doing before. This relates to the party, thusly... I dreamt that I moved into my house and that Michael [the current owner who is moving to Norway] had granted an easement [a new technical term that I have now learned] to an auto supply store to use the lower half of my house from nine to five, when he used to be at work. This was great for him, and brought in a little spending money, but in my dream, these guys were waking me up at 9 every day. And they were surly. And they wanted to use one drawer of my filing cabinet. And the thrill wore off eventually of being able to roam around downstairs in the house/showroom area and look at all the snazzy add-ons you could have to trick out your car.


Five Bad Things About Today

  1. Spent too long chasing a fax all over town
  2. Special parking rates at UW -- $6!
  3. House did not magically clean itself while I slept
  4. AT&T won't give me my $.10/minute rate back
  5. Dinner options are slim and I have only myself to blame
Five Good Things About Today

  1. Had a Foundry meeting that ended on time
  2. Cute guy with beads in his beard smiled at me
  3. Slept until 10:45 & dreamed about vacationing
  4. Hung out in Special Collections a bit
  5. My friend Sara got a great job and is moving to Oregon


[the big king] If one looks at the dishes in my sink, one might get the impression that I subsist on an all-liquid diet. In reality, I drink a lot of coffee at home and eat a fair amount of meals out. Last night I went to Burger King and sampled their new Big King [something about sitting in front of a computer screen all day really does make me hungry for junk food]. The Big King is far superior to the Big Mac, but maybe I only think that because Burger King is closer to my house than McDonald's.

Sometimes I even eat at big people restuarants. The last time I attempted this, I went out to a Wallingford cafe called Bizzarro. I was sorry. An inaudible waitress, snooty patrons -- besides my esteemed guest and our pleasant tablemates -- patrons singing show tunes and other patrons who started off noisy conversations with phrases like "D'ya know why I love Jewish girls...?" Uck. I'll stick to Playland, thank you very much.

Go September
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