I see you shiver with antici… pation.

“Est. Ship: On or before 05/14/2004”


the end is the beginning is the… aw, fuck it.

And I finally have a moment to catch my breath—predictably, while at the DVlab, but thankfully while watching the little colored bar inch its way across the DVD Studio Pro progress window. We’ll see if this works or not.


  • College classes: My last class meeting was this past Wednesday—the history seminar that was one of the best random assortments of students I’ve ever been with. Afterwards I had a strange sensation of Things Ending.
  • My thesis treatise: Finished writing this morning, had it printed and bound at Longhorn Copies, and all four copies are currently sitting in Stekler’s mailbox awaiting his signature.
  • Editing my thesis film: I’m too deep in sleep-deprived shock to be able to comprehend this one. I made some last-minute changes earlier today and have since then been waiting on the speed, grace, and good will of the lab computers to render / save / convert / encode / etc, with the final goal of getting it on DVD before the Plan II office closes this afternoon.

I thought I had some actual content to post, but that’s all I seem able to offer right now. However, I can tell I’ll survive if only because I’m already itching to make to-do lists for this summer.

Update: The Verdict from the thesis advisors: “respectable”




nothin like a professor getting you tipsy after the last day of class to make you want to sit down and pound out a 15 page thesis treatise.

no really.

warm and fuzzy. bring it on!



Maybe it’s just the sticky film of sleep deprivation clouding my vision, but I swear that sunlight is weird today—like it’s only at 3/4ths strength, filtered through the blue sky haze that precedes apocalypse.


election year is upon us

The best political site ever.

Just think, some years this would have been a humor site.

Peace Corps year 1

$100 lawn job + music dilemma

Friday afternoon I was overjoyed to come home and find that the lawn—both front and back—was freshly mowed. Apparently the guy who had stopped by the week before to ask about doing the lawn had finally returned and accomplished the seeminly unthinkable: cutting the three-foot-tall weeds in the backyard.

When he stopped back by to collect his $30, he offered to use the weed eater on the back porch to clean up the edges. I said no that’s ok, it was a friend’s (borrowed from Jennie and Mark a few weeks ago), what he had done was fine. I told him to feel free to stop by once it had grown back up again.

Monday morning I went out to get my bike on the back porch, glanced over, and saw… no weed eater. Weed eater gone.

And so I have little choice but to conclude that Steve the lawn guy is responsible… It was tucked away, out of sight from the road, and nothing else was stolen—or has ever been stolen from our house. Which instead of making me angry really just made me sad—a little disappointment of human trust.

So now our $30 bargain lawn job has turned into a $100+ lawn job.


In between mind-numbing bouts of editing, I frequently find myself thinking “In five months, I’ll…” or “For the next two years, I won’t…”—everything from what my morning routine will be like to how I’ll miss driving my car or taking endless hot showers. Mostly these thoughts are accompanied by a tingle of excitement and anticipation—even the occasional “holy crap, what am I going to be doing?!” moments.

My current pre-packing dilemma is music. I absolutely MUST have music with me in Senegal. Ideally, as much music as possible on as few batteries as possible, in a form that will hold up for two years.

Which brings me to my two current candidates: iPod vs mp3 CD player.

First, the pros of the iPod: 40gb of glorious hard drive, big enough to hold ALL my music plus digital pics/files; small enough to carry inconspicuously (though not so much if I use the Belkin battery pack); getting an iTrip would allow me to play my music on any radio; no moving parts to trap dust.

Then, the pros of a mp3-capable CD player: about 1/10 the price (therefore much easier to lose/replace); better battery life; could play CDs from friends or bought in-country.

Oh, and the iPod is damn sexy.

So I’m torn. Does the convenience of the iPod’s tiny size/huge capacity outweigh the mental stress (and guilt, to some extent) of bringing such a valuable piece of electronics with me?

I really haven’t decided this one yet—part of me would like to be unencumbered by high-maintenance technology, but the rest of me is fully prepared to lug batteries and adaptors and whatever else around Africa.

In other news, Eeyore’s Birthday Party was postponed due to rain—which is great because there’s a chance I’ll be far enough along on my thesis to schedule a break this Saturday afternoon… Anybody interested?


lab haiku two

says the haiku to itself.
Quite postmodern, no?



So here I am, 3pm on the second-to-last Saturday of the semester… sitting at my computer… trying desperately not to do work. Des-per-ate-ly.

Video editing, thesis treatise, seminar paper, history paper, RTF essays… all suddenly superseded by, oh I don’t know, cleaning my room, sorting my CDs, playing with my webpage—even posting to my blog, perhaps?


I want to do some road tripping/camping/etc out West this summer. Maybe late July, early August… a few weeks of driving and hiking and living in a tent. Who’s interested? Ideas about where to go?

This is where I want to be:


cloudy radiohead-soundtracked day

scattered moments:

Stekler was surprisingly enthusiastic when I showed him an embarrassingly rough rough cut of the thesis this morning. My optimism is doing its best to shove past the reality of time constraints. As all Plan II thesisers are lamenting to themselves right now, “Why did I do this to myself? Why did I wait this long to start…”

To which I answer: “Because, really, what else were you going to do?”

Last night at the DV lab I was very sad that I’m not a smoker. At least then I’d have an identifiable reason to take a break every 20 minutes.

The women’s bathroom at Mojo’s, which has a uterus painted on it, seems to be locked. Normally I would have no problem going into the men’s bathroom, but there’s male anatomy painted on that door. Stick figures without the skirts? No problem. Internal workings of genitalia I clearly lack? … I dunno. It just don’t feel right.

I’ll be screening the (presumably finished) thesis film in the CMB on Thursday, May 20th, 7pm or so. Big screen and everything! Party following, chicken costumes encouraged.


'bout that time

Yes, once again it’s 11pm and I’m in the lab. I’ve actually been making slow, not steady so much as in spurts (spurty? spurtish?), progress on my rough cut… putting placeholders here, slowly building sequences there, and re-watching the archival and chicken footage whenever I need to shift my brain into neutral and giggle to myself.

A title was suggested to me last night: “Pilgrim’s Progress.”

I really like it, but I wanted to run it by my faithful, overeducated readers to see who would “get” it—or really just what anybody gets from it. (Reminders/hints: My film concerns Pilgrim’s Pride, a poultry corporation led by Bo Pilgrim, a devout Christian, and Susan Nugent, a woman who sued Pilgrim’s for pollution of her cattle ranch. Most of my archival footage is cheery 1950s “Miracles from Agriculture” kind of stuff.)

I somehow feel it’s an improvement over the options considered so far. Because while “Poultry Emulsion” and “Clucking You Over for a Bawk” make admirable use of the many chicken-related puns, I just don’t know that I’m ready to betray that much gleeful bias from the get-go.

Much love to my thesis compatriots. The end is (tragically, thankfully) in sight.