29 August 2008

new orleans

it being the third anniversary of katrina, i thought y'all might like to scan my pictures from my trip to new orleans last year at halloween. it was still pretty f'ed up. but it was encouraging to see signs of life and children playing and laughing. they're working hard. you get thirsty when you work hard.

guerrilla subway advertising

28 August 2008

shouldering the load

last night i moved one of the last loads from my old place to my new place with a filled backpack traveling by bicycle.

lesson learned: don't move heavy bottles of cooking oil and liquor on your bicycle.

my shoulders hurt.

also, my coworker needs to stop listening to jesus christ superstar.

27 August 2008

i'm feelin a little crazy today


No nuns on catwalk, priest stops "beauty contest"

ROME (Reuters) - An Italian priest who had planned an online "pageant" for nuns has suspended the project, saying he was misinterpreted and had no intention of putting sisters on a beauty catwalk.

"My superiors were not happy. The local bishop was not happy, but they did not understand me either," Father Antonio Rungi told Reuters by telephone from his convent in southern Italy Tuesday.

"It was not at all my intention to put nuns on the catwalk," said Rungi, a priest of the Passionists religious order, speaking from his convent in the town of Mondragone.

Rungi's idea appeared in newspapers around the world after he wrote of a contest for nuns on his blog, called by some "Sister Italy 2008."

"It was interpreted as more of a physical thing. Now, no-one is saying that nuns can't be beautiful, but I was thinking about something more complete," he said.

He said his concept for the contest, in which nuns would vote for themselves on his blog, would include attributes such as their spirituality, social awareness, charity and other qualities.

Rungi wrote in his blog that his intention was to show "the interior beauty" of a nun and the work she does for the Church and for society, mostly in education and health care.

"We have to draw more attention to the world of nuns, who are often not sufficiently appreciated by society," he wrote, adding that he had hoped his initiative would help boost sagging vocations to religious lie.

"Many monasteries in Italy are dying because of a lack of religious vocations," he wrote.

Rungi said he received a lot of calls of support but also many sharp emails by people who attacked him for wanting to create a Miss Italy-style event.

"Some of them were really nasty," he said.

best august ever?

you guys! am i wrong? is this not the most beautiful august ever in new york? when i think of august i think of clothes soaked in sweat and disgusting humidity and angry subway riders and smelly piles of garbage.

but this august has been beautiful! lots of fun thunderstorms to keep the humidity down and gorgeous days. there's still lots of smelly garbage and angry subway riders though. and i was among them this morning! it took me forever to get to work when the stupid F train stopped dead short of delancey.

it's a beautiful august but it would be much more pleasant if the mets would stop blowing SEVEN RUN LEADS!!!!! hello, boys, stop that please. i mean really.

25 August 2008


Nuns at Rome's Gregoriana University in November 2006
Internet users will be able to choose their favourite nun from photographs

An Italian priest says he is organising the world's first beauty pageant for nuns to erase a stereotype of them as being old and dour.

Antonio Rungi says The Miss Sister Italy online contest will start on his blog in September.

"Nuns are above all women and beauty is a gift from God," he told Italy's Corriere della Sera newspaper.

He is asking nuns to send their photos to him, saying that internet users will then choose the winner.

Father Rungi stressed that nuns were not being invited to parade in bathing suits, saying it will be up to them whether they pose with the traditional veil or with their heads uncovered.

"This contest will be a way to show there isn't just the beauty we see on television but also a more discreet charm," the priest, who lives near the southern city of Naples, told the Corriere della Sera.

"You really think all nuns are old, stunted and sad? This isn't the case anymore," he said, pointing out that many young nuns had arrived to Italy from around the world.

He added that the idea of staging such a contest had been suggested by nuns themselves.

moving day: pros and cons.

pro: moving out of a noisy, dirty apartment into the third story of a magnificent brownstone with fantastic housemates.

con: my back hurts. a lot.

pro: fun times with a good friend moving together.

con: $115 ticket for double parking at 10 am on a sunday. m.f.ers.

pro: nice van rental man saving us that amount by giving us a business rental.

con: screaming match with man who stole my gas grill from the curb while we were moving the van after getting the ticket. (pro: got it back.)

pro: trip to ikea.

con: trip to ikea.

pro: resting while friend drives back from jersey.

con: three parter - 1) sunday summer traffic entering holland tunnel 2) commercial vehicles not allowed in said tunnel 3) having to turn around and go through staten island.

pro: getting time with kathryn after long weekend.

con: with traffic, time together begins at 11:30 pm.

pro: acupuncture after work tonight.

con: work beforehand.

20 August 2008

18 August 2008

what else is awesome?

ME. i am awesome. let me tell you how awesome i am.

i think i am a little tired from playing in the ocean all weekend.

today i took the mail out on my way to get to some rice and beans for lunch.

also i took a deposit with about $8000 in checks that was supposed to go to the bank.

i stopped at the mailbox and dropped it all in.

uh oh...

the deposit wasn't supposed to go in there!

so about 10 minutes before the 3 PM pickup i went down to stake out the mailbox. i wish it had been a steak out, that sounds far more delicious.

after an hour the mailman came and opened it up. he said i could look through the mail ONCE.

and i found it!

and now i get to keep my job!

see how awesome i am?

damn it.

fire island is awesome

15 August 2008

dare to visit the island of fire!

i am going to fire island this weekend. i figure my tan has suffered over the past couple of months having skin cancer, so now i have to compensate. kidding!

no really though i am super excited to get out of town. i've never been there and i am thrilled.

but for now i am insanely busy. back to work!

14 August 2008

well, that was fun.

i hate myspace. all the spam messages and flashing annoying profiles. yeah, it's a good place for bands. true enough. given my dislikes, it took me a long time to get on facebook.

but i was pleasantly surprised. other than the constant application requests, facebook is not too bad a place to park my online keester.

but today i was inundated with spam posts on my wall. anyone else? so not cool.

13 August 2008

proven wrong

ok i guess i should read the news before i judge - turns out phelps threw his goggles aside because they had leaked and he swam the race BLIND and he wasn't excited because HE COULDN'T SEE.


Olympic-sized disgust

After watching the Mets game last night and being pleasantly surprised when the bullpen did NOT blow a lead, Kathryn and I switched over to catch the Olympics. The women were just heading into the pool and Phelps' chance at the most gold medals ever was coming up. What splendid timing! We watched as the announcers tried to will the American out of fourth place - "she's pressing now and trimming down the lead" - no wait, she's a full body length behind. Oh well.

Phelps headed to the line and the commentary moved to gloating. "Watch at the third turn, he'll make the rest of the field look like boys." And he did. He set another world record (yawn - see slate.com's article on the boring world of swimming world records). More importantly, he had himself the most gold. Ever.

And what was his reaction? As his family wept in the stands, he tossed his hat and goggles aside, looking distracted and even a little disappointed - a far cry from his vein-popping celebration after the men's relay. Why wasn't he more excited? The announcer explained that Phelps was hoping to finish under 1:52 and had just missed it. Even though he set a world record.

What kind of athletic culture have we bred, that setting a world record and having the most gold medals ever isn't enough? Maybe I just don't understand because my sports career highlights are beating a girl in a badminton tournament (she was really good), my junior varsity baseball career (O for O with two walks, three stolen bases and two runs) and an undefeated season in college intramural softball (ok that was actually pretty awesome).

I just can't imagine not being able to celebrate such an incredible achievement because you didn't break the world record BY ENOUGH. Am I in the wrong for not being competitive enough? Am I the only one sickened as 16 year olds destroy their bodies - the announcer can't understand why "her knee injuries just won't go away."

Don't get me wrong, I love the Olympics.

Four years ago I was in Kenya and watched lots of handball and endless qualifying heats for track and field events. When a Kenyan finished a qualifier in first place, it was front page news. My time in Nairobi was less than pleasant - robbed blind by both thieves and the police, homeless and stuck in a seedy motel where I fell asleep to screams and gunshots and the pounding bass of the all night reggae club downstairs.

But you know what? I would love to be there again, if only to celebrate the glory of these incredible athletes, rather than see standards set so high that it becomes, as I believe they say on The Simpsons, "glorious gold, so-so silver and shameful bronze."

12 August 2008

i am humbled.

i'm getting pretty good at guitar hero. i just finished my first song on expert. i thought i was pretty awesome. i guess not.

wanna work out? why yes. yes i do.

Couple in bed
Forget about jogging round the block, the NHS says
'Sexercise yourself into shape'

The NHS has some new advice for people struggling to schedule a fitness routine into their daily lives - a workout between the sheets.

According to the NHS Direct website, "sexercise" can lower the risk of heart attacks and helps people live longer.

Endorphins released during orgasm stimulate immune system cells, which also helps target illnesses like cancer, as well as wrinkles, it states.

Sexual health experts said such claims could not be scientifically proven.

"It's good to see the NHS are promoting sexual wellbeing," Dr Melissa Sayer told the Guardian newspaper.

"Yes, there is evidence that sex has benefits for mental wellbeing, but to say there is a link with reduced risk of heart disease and cancer is taking the argument too far."

NHS Direct, however, told the paper the content was "backed by science and clinical evidence" and "isn't just a bit of fun".

'Regular romps'

The advice, published under the headline "Get more than zeds in bed", is one of several sexual health-related articles to be found on the NHS Direct website.

Sex with a little energy and imagination provides a workout worthy of an athlete, the article says.

If you're worried about wrinkles - orgasms even help prevent frown lines from deepening
NHS Direct

"Forget about jogging round the block or struggling with sit-ups.

"Sex uses every muscle group, gets the heart and lungs working hard, and burns about 300 calories an hour."

The advice suggests "regular romps this winter" could lead to a better body and a younger look.

Increased production of endorphins "will make your hair shine and your skin smooth," it adds.

"If you're worried about wrinkles - orgasms even help prevent frown lines from deepening."

The article goes on to say that orgasms release "painkillers" into the bloodstream, which helping keep mild illnesses like colds and aches and pains at bay.

The production of extra oestrogen and testosterone hormones "will keep your bones and muscles healthy, leaving you feeling fabulous inside and out".

come on feel the illinoise

presenting the winner of the illinois state fair hog calling contest.
the first ever female winner!

11 August 2008

omg you guys

i just did like the funnest thing ever.

i opened up my iphoto library - pictures from may 2004 to today.

i got the first picture - around a campfire in malawi - and then i held the forward button.


well by my whole life i actually mean four years. but that is a long time!

there are lots and lots of pictures i would love to share with you but this time through two caught my eye. the first is from the new chicago public library.

this one is from the second to last night at magnetic field. i loaned my camera to lee to catch the last few shows and hadn't gone through them until tonight. sorry william.

new house!

i am moving over the next couple of weeks and i am SO excited. you'll get to see lots of pictures as i get things ready. i'm moving into the top floor of a carroll gardens brownstone. parlor with a grand piano, dining room for 10, patio, roof access and two wonderful housemates.

first things first, though. the room i'm moving into used to be a teenage girl's room. it could use a little TLC. the door has got to go. full door and detail:

08 August 2008

i miss minnesota. sort of.

Cops follow Cheetos trail to nail burglar suspects

ST. PAUL - St. Paul police followed a trail of Cheetos in order to nab three teenagers suspected of burglarizing a vending machine. Officers were called to the Arlington Recreation Center on July 29, where they found a vending machine's glass had been broken with a chair.Most of the candy and chips were missing, according to a criminal complaint in Ramsey County District Court.

The officers followed the orange, dusty trail from the rec center, around the side of the building and to a nearby home. Inside, they found numerous vending-sized bags of Cheetos and other snacks.

Police arrested three males aged 17, 18 and 19 who soon arrived at the home by car. The two adults are charged with third-degree burglary, while the 17-year-old is charged with criminal damage to property.

All three denied being involved, the complaint says.

Dude. Not cool. (morning crankiness)

Not cool: kanye west's egomaniacal mta ads. I think they're for absolut vodka. The last thing I need in the morning is a sign telling me I can take two Be Kanye tablets and "feel famous on the outside.". Disgusting.

Not cool: the bicyclist on 14th street last night. Fine you can bike on the sidewalk even if you shouldn't. I do it sometimes too. But really? DO YOU REALLY NEED AN AIRHORN? OK maybe given the lack of compassion shown by NYC drivers, it's not a bad idea. But YOU WERE ON THE SIDEWALK. Come on old man! Pedestrians can see you. You do not need an airhorn for sidewalk biking!

Not cool: you know who you are, lady. I was walking off the train at the 23rd street stop, tired and achy and still wanting to be on vacation. I walked in a straight line towards the exit turnstiles, heading towards my usual exit. I guess you had somewhere more important to be, huh? You couldn't dip in front of me or pause for a moment and slip behind. No, you raised your right elbow, gave me a solid shove in the ribs and pushed me aside to access the next turnstile over.

I know you can be a little harsh sometimes, but please, New York City, don't ever grind me down to the point where I feel it necessary to push my fellow denizens aside with such utter disregard. They say to live in New York City but not so long that it makes you hard, and to live in California but not so long that it makes you soft. I've done both plus Minnesota...

So I guess that would make me soft, hard and extremely cold.

07 August 2008

email: good. phones: bad.

ok our email issues are resolved. but now our phones are down for the second time this week! it's been nearly all day and it seems like they're finally working again... but i don't trust them yet.

06 August 2008

nobody panic!

my company uses google apps to run the email for our domain.

and now it looks like aol's servers have identified all mail from google's corporate servers as spam, so nothing is going back and/or forth!

everyone panic!

05 August 2008

I am the keymaster!

You guys! I just picked up the key to my new apartment. Awesome! Oh my god it is so beautiful.. Pictures soon!


i saw lots of faded tattoos last night. kiss army. crosses. stars. thinning hair, a beer gut and too much makeup are such great complements to an old spiderweb on the shoulder.

but i didn't see anything close to this. wow.

judas priest at the hard rock!

04 August 2008

crack mammoth, rudest least

wow, my adventures have fallen off the face of the earth!

and now i'm busy coming back from a week-long vacation.

here are some pictures!

i'm going to a secret/not so secret show tonight.

the band's names rhyme with the post title.

and by rhyme, i mean only sort of rhyme.