Tuesday, January 31, 2006

A long, slow week. Sigh.

It was a really rainy ride to work. It's sunny and windy now, and I'm crossing my fingers that my bike clothes will be dry by the time I go. It's going to be a pretty darn chilly otherwise. On the upside, I got some work done on my bike this weekend - new non-rusty shifter cables and a new non-wobbly back tire - so now the Schwinn Continental Traveler Trois is a joy to ride.

Here's a neat New York Times article about parallels between Mozart and Einstein.

Yesterday went by really quickly. All the events that got started over the past weekend are coming to fruition this coming weekend, so I was busy getting things figured out. Here's the plan so far...
Friday night - meet people down at Cafe Asia to celebrate my last day at Wally World!
Saturday - fly up to Burlington for the funeral
Sunday - catch a ride down to Boston
Monday - hang out in Boston. Go to a museum, go to Wellesley, something fun.
Tuesday - meet up with Scott, either at the airport or in Amherst. (I might get to meet his parents!!)
Wednesday - Drive back to DC with Scott.

We'll see. It's all pretty rough right now.

Any other news? The cleats that I ordered arrived last night. I haven't been playing much Ultimate recently (only once in the past 2 weeks) and I don't really miss it... but it's still exciting to get shiny new cleats.

The official evite for the Second Annual Minnesota Party went out today. If you didn't get it and want it, e-mail me! February 11th. Less than two weeks away. I still don't know who I'm going to dress up as.

Speaking of Minnesota, check out my little bro's recent post about the John Beargrease dogsled race! It started last weekend.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Good, Bad, & Ugly

Sorry for the cliched title, but it really was an up-and-down weekend.

The Good - I have a new job! I talked to Sibley on Saturday night and decided to go for it. I talked to my contracting company and my supervisor here and determined that my last day at Wally World will be this Friday, February 3rd. I'm incredibly excited.

So... what exactly am I going to be doing for Sibley? I'm not entirely sure yet. About half of my time will be spent doing things for The Electric Sheep Company. I'll be learning a lot about how to set up a company and will help out with a nice wide variety of tasks associated with that. I'll be exposed to and learning about a bunch of new things, from investments to health care plans to graphic design. I'll have an hourly contract for 40 hours per week. I'll be able to telecommute. I'll be able to play pickup downtown over lunch! I'll be able to stay out late and not have to wake up at 5am. I'm so excited for the new things I'll be exposed to and for the cool people I'll be working with.

Semi-related... the Electric Sheep Company will be at this very cool event called The Happening on February 18th. Art, music, dancing, poetry, a mixed reality experience (that's where ESC comes in), it's going to be cool.

The Bad - The father of one of my best friends died on Saturday morning. It was unexpected. He was too young.

I'm hoping to go up to Vermont for his funeral on Saturday.

It was a weekend of reconnecting with that circle of friends, of letting people know that I care about them, of appreciating this life.

The Ugly - Scott thinks he'll have to extend his stay in Guatemala for another 5 days. It's disappointing, but not unexpected. Anyone who has hacked into my e-mail account will just have to deal with 5 more days' worth of lovey-dovey correspondance.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Happy birthday Wolfgang!

By the way, it's Mozart's 250th birthday today! Look what Google did for the occasion!

The sun is still shining...

...but I could not feel my toes when I got to work this morning. Brr. I was actually a little nervous that I'd lose my balance on my way from the lockers to the showers because my feet felt so funny. I have a new understanding of the shoe covers my sister wears for her cycling races.

Just got this e-mail from Garrison Keillor:
Dear Voyageurs of the Prairie,
After due deliberation, we've decided to launch Prairie Home Cruise II from Seattle for a week of sailing along the coast of British Columbia and Alaska to Juneau and Glacier Bay and back. We leave Friday, July 14, and return Friday, July 21, and we'll linger in Seattle to do A Prairie Home Companion on July 21, which will be taped for broadcast on July 22, from the lovely Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery.
It would be such a cool trip! My friend Jason and his famly went on the Prairie Home Companion cruise last year and loved it. I'll be out in Seattle over the 4th of July for Potlatch... I could just hop down to San Fran and LA to visit friends and family there for a week... and then hop back up north for the cruise... What a nice little Friday-in-January daydream.

Don't forget, the Minnesota party is on February 11th. The official evite is coming out next week.

One more thing... a brilliant video. Dogs in slow motion. Beautiful, abstract, funny. Thanks to Grant for bringint it to my attention!

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Sun is shinin' in the sky; there ain't a cloud in sight.

The big news is that I had two job interviews yesterday, and assuming a follow-up conversation this weekend goes well, I think I'll be leaving Wally World in a month or so. Nothing is final yet, but I'm definitely excited about this opportunity. I hope I'll be able to post more details next week.

The girl sitting next to me yesterday while I was working on a Sudoku introduced me to Kakuros ("Sudoku for people who can count"). It's sort of like a killer sudoku, but without the requirement to use every digit in each 3x3 square.

It's so nice having my sister back in DC again. We've been able to spend a lot of time together this month - hanging out at Chez Limon as well as going out and doing cool things. I didn't realize how much I missed her until she returned. Too bad the little bro isn't moving out here any time soon.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

A new bike in the family!

My sister brought a new bike home with her last night! A blue Schwinn Continental! It's a little older than mine, and it has a standard (not ladies) frame, and I'm not sure that it's a Traveler. But they make such a cute couple. They're like sisters, orphaned sisters who were separated in childhood. Each presumed the other was dead, but now they're happily reunited under the watchful eye of their crotchety old Schwinn Sidewinder mountain bike godfather. There must be a Dickens novel about this, right?

Our Schwinn family: Mine in the foreground, Margo's sandwiched in the middle, and the Sidewinder in the back.
(PS - they're parked in our living room because our garage door opener is broken. Again.)

Yesterday Jaime asked me to play my violin in her and Kate's wedding! I'm so honored and excited!

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Another morning photo

This is the first thing I see when I step out of my front door each morning.
Well, this morning I saw the moat that formed outside the door because our drain is clogged. Sometimes I miss that and get my shoes all wet.

Not too much to report. I went to the Wonderland Ballroom (our local dive bar) last night for trivia. Super fun Ultimate/Delafield crew, but I left about halfway through for a much-needed swig of cough syrup and my flannel sheets.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Innate geometric knowledge

Here's a neat finding about geometric intuition. Gotta love parallel lines!

MacGyver Day

Happy birthday Richard Dean Anderson! Thank you for making such a good MacGyver, and congratulations on being born in Minneaspolis!

Kilts, Stomachs, Cowboy Hats

A wonderfully cultured weekend!

My aunt took Margo and I to a concert on Friday night. Two British bands: a Welsh army marching band (the Black Guard) and a Scottish drum and pipe (as in bagpipe) band. We had front-row seats, which were really fun. Cool uniforms, orderly marching, fantastic drumstick-twirling technique. It's funny how a uniform on its own can look utterly silly, but get 4 or 5 of them together and suddenly they look great.

Friday's performance was lots of masculine, military pomp and circumstance. Saturday's performance was the exact opposite. My sister and I went to the historic Lincoln Theater on U St. to see Eve Ensler in The Good Body. Ensler is the woman who wrote The Vagina Monologues, and this piece felt like a good sequel. She talks about women's relationships to their bodies: in particular, her hatred of her stomach. My favorite part was the conversation with a Masai woman who loves her body because of what it allows her to do. I think I liked it because I identified with it; I love my body the most when I'm playing frisbee or dancing. Overall, a great show. Uplifting. She didn't make you feel guilty about hating part of your body - just about every woman does. But watching her obsess makes you realize how silly it is, and it's really not a much of a leap to apply that to oneself. From the Masai woman: "Is this tree ugly just because it does not look like that one?"

On Sunday, my sister and I returned to the masculine with Brokeback Mountain. I loved it. It's sad, of course, but beautiful. I don't go to the movies all that often, so I'm glad I got to see this one.

Other good stuff this weekend...
It was really nice spending so much time with my sister.

I got to talk to Scott on Saturday and Sunday mornings. Wonderful.

Aaron hosted brunch in honor of his in-town friends. Monkey break, mango, mimosas... lovley.

Friday, January 20, 2006

I went to Ultimate last night... and fell asleep on the sideline.

Despite the difficulty I have getting myself out the door each morning, my ride to work is one of the nicest parts of my day. This week I've been noticing that the days are getting longer, which makes sense - it's almost a month after the solstice. I tried to take a few photos of the sunrise yesterday, but they didn't turn out all that well. I really liked the way the top row of windows was reflecting the orange sky. Maybe some weekend morning I'll get out and spend more time trying to get that picture.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

If I go to yoga tonight, I risk sleeping through it.

Last week I read that you should try to try to get sleep in 90-minute blocks, because that's approximately how long a sleep cycle lasts, and it's best to wake up at the end of a cycle instead of in the middle of one. I slept for 6 hours last night, which should have been a nice, neat set of 4 cycles... but my alarm was definitely a rude awakening. I was in the middle of a dream in which I was playing a really cool antique Chinese 8-stringed violin. I'm pretty sure this instrument only exists in my imagination, where I'm very good at tuning and playing it.

So my alarm went off, and I dutifully rolled out of bed only to be greeted by a cold room and a rainy morning. I stumbled through coffee and oatmeal and seriously considered calling in sick and going back to bed. Instead, I packed up, hopped over the moat that had formed outside our front door and is currently being soaked up by the carpet inside the front door, and pedaled off. It was a nice ride - wet but warm, and the traffic lights were reflecting off the roads in big washes of color. I felt like I was in an Impressionist painting. I was pretty tired though, both mentally and physically.

In fact, I still am. I'm tempted to leave early today. I rescheduled the interview I had planned for today, as I'm not in top form.

You know, even though it's a little rough on the system, late-night pickup is still wonderful. I subscribe to Caribou Coffee's motto: life is short; stay awake for it. I'm not subscribing to their method for staying awake though. I'm down to drinking one cup of coffee in the morning and occasionally some tea in the afternoon. Besides that, I think I've got my caffeine addiction beat!

Other good news:
1. I don't have to get a certified copy of my birth certificate after all! Turns out a run-of-the-mill photocopy of my passport will do just fine. (See yesterday's post.)

2. I've always been a little disappointed with my kitchen sink for not having a sprayer. But I discovered that I can just hold a spoon under the faucet and spray water all over the place. Now it's fun and easy to rinse out the sink corners!

3. I got to chat with Scott for a few minutes this morning! He got to see a sunset and a thunderstorm on the flight down there.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Paperwork headaches

I spent the morning filling out on-line forms so that I can get security clearance. It was annoying because
1. It's tedious.
2. I did all of this over the summer, but somehow all of my information was lost.
3. I can't go get fingerprinted (i.e. no excuse to leave the office), because the fingerprint cards they sent me have an incorrect social security number. I should be able to do that next week, though, when they send me new cards.
4. I have to provide a certified copy of my birth certificate, which involves filling out an application to the Minnesota Department of Health, getting it signed by a Notary Public and mailing it in along with a check for $16.

Once I got that wrapped up, I spent a little bit of time creating the evite for this weekend's Winter League game. Definitely more fun.

About 5 minutes ago, a woman called me to schedule an interview for a clinical administrative position here at Walter Reed. I'm not sure the job would be significantly more interesting than the one I have now. I'll know more by this time tomorrow.

2006 MN Gubernatorial Race

Even if "It is a common misconception that Satanic people are evil," I don't think Jonathon "The Impaler" Sharkey qualifies as "Minnesota Nice." I hope he doesn't end up as our governor. He's got an entertaining website though, and it would be a fun costume idea for the upcoming Minnesota Party...

Monday, January 16, 2006


I had some time in a cafe on Monday afternoon to write this post out longhand, so it's a little longer than usual.

Scott came over on Friday evening and we had takeout from Astor for dinner. I had plans to go out dancing at Nation with Giles and Kenneth, and I really wanted to flake out - it would have been so much easier to stay home. But somehow I managed to get myself gussied up and out the door. I metroed down to SE, found the club and met up with Giles and Kenneth shortly thereafter. I wasn't sure what to expect - if it would be okay to show up in jeans and sneakers, who I'd be dancing with, etc. It turned out to be a pretty neat, diverse crowd - there were women in cargo pants and bras, in mini skirts and furry boots, in funky tights and neckties. Great people watching.

There were three different spaces for music. We started off with drum and bass but circulated through house and the progressive trance lounge upstairs during the course of the night. At first, I felt awkward, conspicuous and totally out of my element. But before too long, we began to feel the effects of the tequila shots Kenneth ordered for us, and Giles ordered us out into the middle of the dance floor. It's like trying to go swimming in a cold lake: jumping in is much better than wading in. It's a shock to the system, but you've got no choice but to adjust and go with it. Once I stopped watching the people around me (although there were some amazing dancers who were really fun to watch) and just focused on the music, I felt great. There were times in all three rooms when I felt like the music took over and I didn't have to think about dancing at all - my body just knew what it wanted to do. A pretty incredible feeling.

We started dancing around 11:30, took a break at 1:30, got our second wind and finally left sometime around 2:30. Giles could have stayed longer - he was still going strong from his 1:30 Red Bull - but kindly conceded to Kenneth's and my exhaustion. We got to Bob and Edith's Diner in Arlington around 3:00. It was packed, but we got a table right away. Three omelets later, we were on our way home. I washed as much smoke out of my hair as I could and crawled into Scott's bed at 5:00.

I woke up to an incredibly windy Saturday. The National Weather Service actually put a wind advisory out later that day that lasted until Sunday evening. But it didn't stop our Winter League game. We won 15-6, but it was by no means an easy victory. Countless turnovers and trying to run in the mud made it a pretty tedious game. My bike home was almost miserable. I was tired from 3 great hours of dancing and from 4 short hours of sleep and from all the running around, so riding uphill into a ferocious headwind was seriously unpleasant (but kind of funny at the same time - I can't remember ever riding in wind so strong that it threatened my balance). I had a pretty peaceful, recovery-oriented afternoon at home and made my way up to Rosemont at 6:30 for a murder mystery dinner.

** Background info: Rosemont is a 7-person group house, sort of a sister to Delafield, the group house where Scott lives. Every year, the residents of Rosemont and Delafield use the 3-day MLK weekend as an opportunity to invite out-of-town friends in for a weekend of reunioning (reuning? reuniting?) and partying. This mystery dinner was only one of several scheduled events. **

I got to see Scott stunningly transformed into a French maid - heels, garter belt, bustier, long blonde wig, false eyelashes, the whole nine yards. He was the belle of the ball, in my humble opinion. The mystery (written and directed by Nina) was witty and entertaining. The meal was excellent, especially given the fact that it fed something like 75 guests. Some dancing ensued, but I think most people were saving up their dance energy for Sunday night.

We didn't get to bed terribly late on Saturday night but slept in until 10 on Sunday. We went up to Scott's house for a big pancake breakfast. (Big in terms of the number of people served and in the size of the pancakes. Margaret said they approached Paul Bunyan flapjack status.) The afternoon was as lazy as Saturday's - Japhet and I gnawed on part of Friday's NYT crossword puzzle, I barely avoided a double skunking in an extremely unlucky cribbage game against Matt, I napped for at least an hour, and I was foiled at the grocery store when I was about to get in line to check out and realized I didn't have my wallet with me. I sheepishly returned my fewer-than-12 items to their shelves and went home just long enough to fold laundry and dig out my favorite party pants. They were a 2001 birthday gift, one of the best I've ever received. They've got black and hot pink tiger stripes. And they're furry. It's nearly impossible to wear them and not have a great time dancing. I headed back to Delafield where dinner started at 6. (Again, amazing food despite the mass quantities. Mansir's ginger tofu was my favorite part.) By 8, the food and furniture had disappeared, lighting rigs and amps had been set up and the house was shaking to the Black Eyed Peas' "Let's Get It Started."

I'd been looking forward to this party for months, and it exceeded my expectations. The playlist included my favorites songs and a bunch of new ones that I need to add to my repertoire. The dance floor was packed until 1:30, and the rest of the house must have been as well, as there were 200-some guests in attendance. The dance floor opened up a little after 1:30 when people started trickling out, but it was still alive and kicking (vigorously) when Scott and I took off at 3:30. I bet I danced at least 6 hours altogether.

We slept in this morning, ate more big pancakes at Delafield, and helped get the place looking shipshape again. Nate and Jess invited Scott and I to a coffeeshop for an afternoon of work. The three of them laptopped while I did the NYT crossword and wrote this post. Scott's imminent departure for Guatemala makes today bittersweet. He leaves Tuesday and will be gone for two or three weeks. I'm going to miss him a bunch, so it's nice to have a pretty low-key last day with him.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Save the date!

February 11, 2006

The Second Annual Minnesota Party

Foggy Morning

A really pretty ride to work.
Thirteenth Street, NW

Nativity Catholic Church

Other good things...

My Two Cents - a great new blog!

Yesterdays "All Things Considered" had two neat stories:
- This one, about Google map mashups. Robert Siegel interviewed Mike Pegg, who runs the Google Maps Mania blog.
- A story all about lutefisk!!! Short and totally worth listening to.

Scott made me dinner after Ultimate last night - rice and vegetables and coconut milk and curry. So nice, and so nice of him.

It's Friday! Friday the 13th! Paraskevidekatriaphobia is the word for fear of Friday the 13th. I'm not all that superstitious, although all this fog makes the day nice and eerie. Mostly, I'm excited that it's Friday before a three-day weekend.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

I served rutabagas for the first time last night!

A delightful evening.  I got home around 4:30. Scott helped me cook dinner while Margo rearranged the furniture. TDP arrived en masse at 7. They drank beer, I sautéed zucchini, and we sat down to dinner shortly thereafter. We toasted my sister’s arrival with leftover New Year’s Eve champagne and lingered over ice cream sandwiches (courtesy of Aaron) until 10-ish.

Glad it’s Thursday. This week has been going really slowly. I can’t believe it’s not even 1:00 yet! Grr.

I just learned about the Ice Hotel the other day. It’s up in Quebec and is constructed entirely of ice. From the website, it looks absolutely beautiful.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

5 Small Ideas

Not too much to report. A good day, therefore, for a hodge-podge post.

1. Last night I boiled some rutabaga and parsnips and ate them for dinner. Then I went to pickup. Rob counted 55 people - the biggest group I've ever seen there. Looks like we'll have even nicer weather on Thursday!

2. I got a certificate from the Marine Corps Marathon in the mail yesterday, which reminded me of a dream I had over the weekend.
Scott and I were running a marathon, and we were almost finished. We were in the lead, along with some high school cross country runners and their coach. We really wanted to win, so just before we crossed Independence Avenue to get to the finish line at the polo fields, Scott told me we should yell out our favorite words in order to help us run faster. I thought it sounded kind of silly, but then he said "avocado" and sprinted off. I said "Guatemala" and felt this great burst of energy. He and I came in 1st and 2nd in the marathon.
It would be great if that technique worked in Ultimate.

3. For some reason, biking makes me think of water-related analogies.
- Riding my mountain bike is like being in a rowboat, but riding my Schwinn Continental Traveler III road bike is like being a fish.
- Riding alongside city buses is like swimming with whales. They're gentle giants that don't mean any harm, but they can hurt you if you're not careful.
- Bikers are sort of amphibious. But they get to switch between car and pedestrian worlds instead of between land and water.

4. From today's Writer's Almanac:
On this date in 1770, Benjamin Franklin introduced rhubarb to America. He was representing the American colonies as an ambassador in London, and sent a crate of rhubarb to his friend John Bartram. The plant, native to central Asia, had been introduced in Europe by traders; the rhubarb which Franklin (books by this author) sent to America had come to London from Siberia. Rhubarb first appeared in American seed catalogues in 1829, and soon became a popular ingredient in pies. John Bartram was also responsible for introducing kohlrabi and poinsettias to America.
Rhubarb. Yum. Better than rutabagas. I wonder if I can grow some in our backyard.

5. The other day at the grocery store, my checkout clerk recognized me. She knew I didn't need my groceries put in plastic bags because I bike and pack everything into my Timbuktu. I was sort of flattered that she remembered me. And she told me that I remind her of Pikabo Street, which is sort of funny. My sister is the alpine racer, not me. Nevertheless, I won't stop anyone from grouping me with an Olympic athlete.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Welcome home sis!

My sister arrived home safe and sound! Rock on! Josie was a great roommate, but it's definitely nice to have Margo home.

She and Scott and I stayed up late talking last night, which was wonderful, but I think my immune system wishes I had given it a few more hours of sleep. I have a feeling my cold is looking to strike back.

And there's pickup tonight.
To play or not to play?
My brain wants to.
  1. It's beautiful outside.
  2. I didn't play on Sunday.
  3. Maybe if I nap after work my body will agree with me.
If not, I have a pretty nice back-up plan - yoga and then Bohemian Caverns with Aaron and Ann. I haven't been to the caverns in a long time now... but I'm not sure that Belgian beers would be any better or worse for me than Ultimate.

Today I met with a Wellesley alum who does biostatistics at Walter Reed. She loves her job. It's definitely something I need to do more research on.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Quite the heirloom

Here's a Boston Globe article about books bound in human skin. Aaron gets the credit for finding it.
Some excerpts:
The Boston Athenaeum, a private library, has an 1837 copy of George Walton's memoirs bound in his own skin. Walton was a highwayman -- a robber who specialized in ambushing travelers -- and he left the volume to one of his victims, John Fenno. Fenno's daughter gave it to the library.

The Cleveland Public Library has a Quran that may have been bound in the skin of its previous owner, an Arab tribal leader. Pam Eyerdam, head of the library's fine arts and special collections department, said he may have wanted to immortalize himself.

The College of Physicians of Philadelphia has four [medical books] bound by Dr. John Stockton Hough, known for diagnosing the city's first case of trichinosis. He used that patient's skin to bind three of the volumes.
"The hypothesis that I was suggesting is that these physicians did this to honor the people who furthered medical research," Hartman said.

So... if you could have any book bound in your own skin after you died, which book would it be?

Monday - So far, okay

I'm not sleepy anymore! It's pretty nice! This weekend, though, was another story.

I got home from work on Friday around 4:30, went to bed, and napped for an hour. Scott came over for dinner, and then we went over to Aaron's for a little party. Giles convinced us to play Mafia, which was darn fun. I made a terrible mafia member, though. Just couldn't keep a straight face.

We started off Saturday with a wonderful batch of pumpkin pancakes, and then Paul picked me up for our first winter league game of the season. I'm playing with "Minimum Flair", and we won 15-4. We played a little pickup afterwards, but I was beat. Running didn't feel good. Most of the team went out for lunch in Reston, and then... Paul and Eli and I went to Dairy Queen! I had a chocolate-dipped strawberry Blizzard. The consistency wasn't quite right, but the experience was sublime in every other respect.

Paul and me, in our BRDM and DQ hoodies.

I got home around 5, which gave me ample time to shower before A Prairie Home Companion came on. Stayed in the rest of the night - didn't have enough energy to do much besides lie on the futon.

I got about 7 hours of sleep, woke up to find another beautiful pumpkin pancake breakfast waiting for me. Fueled up, headed down to the polo fields, played 3 points and then sat down because I was tired. It wasn't just that my body was still waking up... it was more that my mind was all confused, the way it gets at the end of a tournament day or at the end of a Gunston night. I just can't see the field clearly, can't cut... it's not fun. So I sat on the sideline for 30 or 40 minutes hoping I'd wake up, but I just kept lusting after my flannel sheets. So I headed back up the hill and napped for 2 hours. That gave me enough energy to head down to Armand's for dinner (a going-away event, sadly. But he'll be back in a few months, happily.). Bon voyage Armand!

Fun stuff this week - My sister arrives tonight! TDP events tonight and Wednesday. Ultimate on Tuesday and Thursday, as always. I'd better be healthy enough to play!!

Enough for now. I have to scrub 2 databases for BLS dates. Gross.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Friday Friday Friday

I found a great new Sudoku site - it's got Samurai Sudokus, Killer Sudokus, and Killer Samurai Sudokus, as well as some 6x6 Sudokus which are kind of cute. I printed out one of the Killers and was trying to do some basic addition: 18+17+9+4. I was pretty sure they came to 48, but I decided to write it down just to be sure. It would be silly to mess up the entire puzzle with one faulty calculation in the first square, right? So I wrote down the column of numbers and sat there trying to add 8 and 7, only about 75% sure that the answer was 15. All of this is intended to illustrate the fact that...

I am SLEEPY today. I almost took a post-breakfast nap when I laid my head down on the table this morning. Uf da. I got 7 hours of sleep on Wednesday night and 6 hours last night, which should be enough. Alas. Not this week.

And now my ears are ringing - our printers have been going all morning, and I can hear the lights buzzing and the building humming. And once you become conscious of those ambient noises, it's almost impossible to ignore them.

It's my own fault, though, all this sleepiness, and I think it's worth it. Between Ultimate and the boyfriend, I had a great night last night. Even though I was pretty tired at pickup, I thoroughly enjoyed myself, and running felt really good. And just like on Tuesday, I had some catches that I'm unaccustomed to making. It's like magic - I'm chasing down or cutting in for a disc, watching it as best I can, and somehow my body knows how to reach out for it. And then it's over. I look down, and there's this beautiful piece of plastic in my hand. I can't wait to play this weekend.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

My mom e-mailed me some photos this morning!

First off, here are the handsome Duluth Sproats at the annual Red Flannel Petticoats winter dinner dance. Young Frederick won't be old enough to attend until next year. We look forward to his attendance. (I wrote about the dance here.)

Next, a Christmas morning picture of my sister and I trying out our new hats and handmade glass nail files.

And here's Shackleton. It's hard to resist posting pictures of him and his big feet.

Finally, two shots of my 2005 Buche de Noel: The Cake That Looks Like a Log!

They're not real mushrooms! They're jusmeringueses!


Here we have the stunning Sproat Clan, excluding young Frederick, who won't be old enough to attend the annual Red Flannel Petticoats winter dinner dance until next year.
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Wednesday, January 04, 2006

A Hot Pink Sweater Day

So. A lack of sleep, a persistant cold and some gloomy weather have made yesterday and today a little rough. I just feel a little more tired and sad than I should.

But Ultimate last night was a welcome break from that. I made some catches that I'm not used to - above the head, one-handed grabs in the endzone. It felt good. And, of course, it's wonderful to get to hang out with with Paul and Liz and others. There was a great group out there last night. (Sadly, Scott and Aaron are out with injuries for several weeks.)

I was scheduled to donate platelets this morning, which would have been wonderful - 4 hours of not being in the office and sitting in a comfy chair watching a movie instead. But they wouldn't take me because I'm still a little sick. I rescheduled for next Monday and am crossing my fingers that I'll be better by then.

My hot pink sweater isn't doing quite enough to wake me up, but I just finished a cup of hot chocolate that helped. What I really need is a nap. If it were summer, I could just head outside for 20 minutes. But I think it will be several more months before that's a possibility.

Hmm. I did get a sleeping bag for Christmas. Can I turn my summer power nap ritual into a winter camping ritual? There's actually enough space under my desk to lie down, but I don't think the office is peaceful enough to make sleeping a possibility. Also, I snore, which would disrupt our "professional" atmosphere.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

December 10th

Hey, remember when Scott and I went to the Rosemont Holiday Ball?

New Year's weekend

I miss the weekend. It was wonderful. Here's the recap.

Friday - I left work an hour early, ran some bike errands and cleaned up the apartment a little. Paul and Liz came over and brought some takeout from Astor. We picked up Aaron at the airport, headed down to Caryn's house, and spent the night eating ice cream and cookies and watching a documentary about US Women's Soccer. Couldn't ask for a nicer evening!

Saturday - Spent the morning grocery shopping and prepping for the evening's party... doing my best to kill time before heading down to the airport to meet Scott's flight. We had a successful, very happy reunion and essentially spent the rest of the weekend together. The New Year's Eve party started around 8 and went off without a hitch. It included lots of good memories of 2005, lots of festive attire (like neat boas, a tuxedo, and leather pants), and a champagne toast. I think it was an excellent way to end 2005. Thanks to everyone who attended!

Sunday - We got to bed sometime after 3 and got up sometime after 9. Coffee, oatmeal, off to Ultimate. It was partly sunny and warm enough to wear shorts and a long-sleeved t-shirt. Poor Aaron was not playing because of a nasty ankle injury, but he took some great photos.
Sometime after 3, Scott and I headed off to the Sackler to see the "Style and Status: Imperial Costumes from Ottoman Turkey" exhibit. (This is a link to a pretty neat online version of the show.) From there, we got a wonderful, hot, quick dinner at Chinatown Express. The fresh noodles and dumplings definitely hit the spot. Since we were in Chinatown, we decided to check out the movie schedule and discovered we were just in time for King Kong. My favorite part was the giant toothed man-eating leeches, but I can't find any photos of them to post for you. You'll just have to go see the movie for yourself. It's pretty darn entertaining. Long, but fun.

Monday - I considered going to Ultimate, but... it was rainy out. And I felt lazy. And I figured my immune system would thank me for giving it a chance to do its thing. (I've been sick since last Thursday.) So I hung out Chez Scott and didn't actually go outdoors until after 6 pm, when he and I went out for dinner with Nate and Jess. We went to 2 Amys and had excellent Neapolitan pizza and red wine. I had a wonderful time. I had a wonderful weekend.

Happy New Year everyone!