Friday, November 26, 2004

First off: Happy Birthday, Mum!!
Secondly: Happy (belated) Thanksgiving!
The NYT again pointed out things that I am mad about. First, Maureen Dowd wrote a great op-ed piece on why airline security is getting out of hand, embarrassing, and even starting to look like sexual harrassment. And why we should be angry: It does sh*t. Yes, believe it or not, making women drink their own breast milk and feeling up 70 year old women's breasts is not, somehow, preventing terrorism. Hard to believe isn't it? I mean with a game plan like that, how could anything slip through? If you want to learn more, check out the NYT for Nov. 25th. It's worth it.
And most importantly, Republicans are trying to push through a bill that would entirely cut the Pell grant program. Because obviously education isn't important, nor is helping to level the playing field so that people like me can go to college, and not just the Bush family kids (who, if they are anything like W, are not very smart). Now I'm going to cite some of the editorial "Undermining the Pell Grants" in case you don't believe me:
"The pending cut could cause as many as 1.2 million low-income students to have their grants reduced - and as many as 100,000 could lose their grants altogether...The Pell program, which is meant to help students pay for tuition and other expenses, like books and housing, has been gravely underfinanced for a long time. Congress has tried to mask the problem by tricky bookkeeping. In particular, Congress failed to revise the maximum grant to keep pace with rising costs. Left untouched for a decade, the aid formula is still capped at around $4,000 a year - far less than what it takes to support a college student...the Republican leadership has advanced a proposal that could slash the roughly $300 million. Eliminating the resources to help needy and qualified students go to college will not even put a dent in the nation's growing deficit, but it will greatly diminish opportunities for upward mobility for the nation's youth."
For the article, go to Definitely worth reading. I am completely shocked that first abortion rights are being threatened, and now Pell grants. And we're still in November of the first month of Bush's second term! Can't this administration do anything right? If we're going to dump billions of dollars into a waste of a war, can't we at least reserve a few million to educate our own bright youth? The program was designed to help students with the grades to do well in college to go, despite economic disadvantages. This cut would clearly hurt the working class and lower middle class by preventing their children from having the chance to make a better life for themselves. Wtf is wrong with this administration??

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Because it's funny and it's Brownlow and it's on our daily jolt page:
"If you take a porpentine [porcupine] and get it really mad, its hairs will separate like it had washed its hair with no conditioner, you know?"- Professor Brownlow, discussing Hamlet, Shakespeare

Also: went to Variasians for the first time Saturday. Good Thai iced tea, but that warm coconut drink I couldn't drink (it reminded me of soap or something that I didn't feel like I should be drinking). The food was good besides that though, and it was great fun to sit with Kathleen and Heather and watch the show. The Chinese ribbon dance was gorgeous. And the dance involving a brass plate. Made me wish I could dance. Watched SNL at D Becky's. I don't think people really got The Falconer. I don't like U2's new song. Becky's bunny was as cute as ever!

OK, back to the Spanish paper...

Friday, November 19, 2004

Last weekend: The GREs. Yes, the trivia and "fun facts" for English majors. A little under half is straight identification of passages (matching up authors and titles, authors and passages, you get the idea), and then there's the multiple choice literary analysis sections. So, yeah, it basically is totally useless. Despite this fact, while I was going through it I can honestly say I was rather enjoying myself. I did the best I could, although I guessed more than I should have. Definitely some familiar territory after all my own reading and my studying. Odd coincidence: Thomas Pynchon made an "appearance" on The Simpsons in a paper bag. Yes, in disguise, even as a cartoon.

After the test, I found Andrew in the library and we went to Amherst for some of the homecoming game. The main attraction was the reception afterwards, where there were cookies to be had. Also, went to a book signing for some Amherst profs and their new (very funny) book. At one point they had a joke about how profs. should retain a class's attention by hiring a work study student with a particularly loud or inviting laugh, and the prof. pointed at me right afterwards and said "you'd do well." Andrew laughed at me =)

Also had a celebratory (in my mind it was very much a celebration, anyways!) dinner in Noho, with sushi. And then I had a very large Herrell's ice cream (burnt sugar and butter with fudge on top. Sooo good. If there's a heaven it should involve eating Herrell's ice cream).

Sunday we worked quite a bit, moving from study area to study area. I finished one book, started another I think... Introduced Andrew to Pratt library (a new favorite).

On the application front, I have sent out my general GRE scores and transcripts.

I have a new and I think better idea for my final Spanish essay, involving Cabeza de Vaca (yes, you heard right, good ole Head of Cow himself) and Hans Staden. Andrew, with his vocabulary of maybe 200 Spanish words, was very worried about that name. Apparently, Cabeza de Vaca's father or grandfather or some male ancestor plopped a cow skeleton on a plot of land to claim it, and from then on, they were known as the Cabeza de Vacas. Profesora seemed interested, I believe her exact words were: "That could be interesting," so I'm plunging ahead.

This evening I went to Falling Bodies (Mary Jo Salter's play) with the Across The Lake crew, and I think we were rather evently split on who did/ didn't enjoy it. Jaime and I were laughing at some points, I remember specifically when we both were like "Comus!" when Milton mentioned the masque he wrote. And the Andrew Marvell and Donne allusions...And the nun in a box...


Further news: Merrie's on facebook, and she revealed a post-makeover photo to me.

Pink Poodledog: haha! mer!
Pink Poodledog: that's a cute picture there
Pink Poodledog: wow, it looks like mascara and eyeliner and shadow...
muskrateer86: yeah, the whole works
Pink Poodledog: and your hair! so cute --
muskrateer86: I decided to preserve the moment because it'll probably never happen again
Pink Poodledog: pretty eyes mer -- see, you should always wear that stuff when you dress up
Pink Poodledog: hahahahaha

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Oh wow it's been a long, long time since my last post... OK, quick sum up!

Halloween weekend: dog-sitting. Phantom of the Opera = very cool, loved it, the music was amazing, and the singing... ahh. Dale's party was fun and I wish I could have stayed longer... but as it was I was seeing shadows all the way home after the scary movie!

The following weekend: Andrew came out, we studied at the Thirsty Mind, in the Stimson Room, etc. Breakfast at the cute Roadside Cafe was yummy. Taboo with Katie and Karuna and Jasmine very fun (and funny). I got my letter of rec materials together. We had dinner Sunday at Fresh Side (very good). We stayed up late editing my personal statement.

This week: Lots o' the busies. I got my GRE scores back, 5.5 on the writing... I guess that's OK, but I felt like I deserved a 6! I wrote so much, and I thought it was coherent (at least at the time). Prof. Moran scared the heck out of our whole class about our midterm, but me and Sheyda were sitting together and were like "what's going on? we did well..." And I think I should have gotten an A, but I believe my test was the first one he graded (ie, before he read all the other papers, which he called the "worst batch he's ever gotten"). Because the only things he didn't like were that I didn't explicitely use the term "scientific method," and that I repeated myself a bit in the conclusion (well, duh). Blah!

Lovely dinner with Dale, Nora, Liz, Erin, Jaime, & Laura tonight. Oh and the cookies at the Stimson Room tea today were amazing. And the berry tea. Yums. What else... Oh yes, it's bitterly cold out. And my heater is a beast, it's constantly pumping out heat. Everyone says my room feels like a sauna. YES! I love it. This is the first year I've had a room that was actually well heated. So I'm enjoying it to the fullest, delighting in the luxury of leaving my window wide open and still feeling comfortably warm. GO FM!! For one the inaccuracies in the heating system are working to my benefit...

OH YES. And the F*CKING FIRE DRILL last night at 3 in the MORNING! What the hell use is a fire drill at 3 am when no one takes roll, checks in people's rooms, etc.? Except for breeding apathy? THE BOY WHO CRIED WOLF, MHC, REMEMBER THE BOY!! Stop the insanity!! There is no EARTHLY reason why I need to be woken up at 3 in the morning to go up and down the freaking stairs. All it teaches me is that, when I hear the fire alarm, it is JUST A DRILL, so I may as well take my TIME and find my coat and put on socks and shoes before I go outside. PRETTY COUNTERPRODUCTIVE!!!!!! And to all those who say it's the law or some such nonsense: Some laws really need to be re-evaluated by semi-intelligent people, because these fire drills are not in the least little bit helpful. GROWL!!!! Add that to the list of things I definitely WON'T be missing next May!

And the other angry thing that has happened since I last posted: Bush. What the hell, America, were you thinking? Yes, it's a good idea to ignore the environment, with our high cancer rates, why should we worry about the environment we exist in? And I totally agree that we should spend 200 billion dollars in Iraq instead of educating our children, providing our citizens with affordable healthcare, or balancing the budget. Oh yeah, so there weren't WMD? And S.H. never threatened us or our liberties? Who cares! Let's just make even MORE people mad at us, because that will really help in lessening the number of people that hate America so much they start terrorizing us. ARGH! GROWL!!!!! And I won't even get started on gay marriage or abortion rights!

Life is so depressing sometimes!

OK, now back to work, no more ranting (till tomorrow).