Sunday, January 31, 2010

painting is exhausting work.

dearest Kylie helped me paint my office yesterday. we got the first coat finished, and it only took us seven hours.

to be fair, this includes driving and shopping times. and a break for frozen bananas with honey and peanut butter. and a break when our aunt and uncle stopped by with a light bulb delivery. I took a bunch of pictures, but I will post them when the office is entirely finished. you know, sometime next year.

I would like to take this opportunity to mention how amazing it is to be friends with my sister in this adult capacity. when did this sister of my transform from someone I let tag along into someone who can swoop in and save my day? seriously. there is no way I would have gotten anything done without her yesterday. it is unlikely that I would have gone to the store alone to buy supplies. it is even less likely that I would have maintained motivation long enough to get much actual painting finished. not only did she keep me motivated, but she is much better at these domestic things than I am. the parts she painted look a whole lot better than the parts I did. and she even brought and made a snack (the aforementioned bananas)! I don't know what I would do without her.

today I woke up very very late (12:30 - I should probably not drink so much when I have things to do the next day) and still had to go grocery shopping. so I didn't actually start painting til 5:00. then the paint roller broke and was hurting my hand so Chris took over for me. he finished the second coat on the main part of the walls, and I did the second coat on two of four walls. so it will probably take several months for me to finish the rest.

no, no, I will force myself to finish during the next few days. otherwise it will never get done. also, I will be getting my bookshelf from my parents' house and undoubtedly buying fancy things when we go to Ikea next weekend. so I need to finish painting in order to decorate! that will be my motivation.

I'll post my sketches tomorrow. the office is too much of a mess to use right now.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Remi's and Legion

as you may or may not remember, last Friday was a day of fun times for me. a cafe and a movie, and all at a time when I should have been at work - the sheer decadence! here are my thoughts on that cafe and that movie. you heard right, it's time for a review! two of them, even!

Remi's Cafe
Chris has been telling me about this place for years. apparently he used to go there when he was a kid and he has been thinking about it ever since. he thought they closed, but it turned out they just moved to another location. he was ecstatic upon learning this from a co-worker a few months ago and insisted we go right away. so we got up early on Saturday morning, intending to enjoy a breakfast of wonderful pastries.

our dreams were shattered when we arrived to find the parking lot empty. turns out they are only open Monday thru Friday, 7:00 am to 4:00 pm. so the only way we could ever eat there would be to take a day off from work. so we did.

when we first arrived, I'll be honest, I was a little skeptical. it looked a lot less coffee shop than I had expected and a lot more bake sale. also, I was a little miffed to find that the breakfast menu was over at 10:30. I had wanted breakfast, but we didn't arrive until well after noon.

all my skepticism was for naught. we ordered a raspberry danish, pierogies, a ham and cheese croissant, and a chicken salad sandwich. oh, and a chai. the best chai, in fact, that I have ever tasted. seriously. it was amazing. and all the other food was amazing too. I would suggest that everyone reading this should take a vacation day tomorrow and visit this place. it was pure bliss. Heaven in my mouth.

Legion
I don't have much to say about this movie that reading the Rotten Tomatoes review won't say just as well. it was a constant repetition of action, then a sappy scene, then action, then a sappy scene and so on. and the sappy scenes were forced and poorly done. I liked watching guys with wings fly around, and I really enjoyed seeing that one guy's spine and should blades sticking out of his back, but beyond that it was really kind of silly. the "hero" had to be at least halfway retarded. the lady who is pregnant with the Chosen Baby (although no-one ever bothers to tell us exactly how this baby will save mankind) is a whore with no redeemable qualities. it you saw the trailer, you saw the movie. if you have to go see it, go to a matinee. full price tickets are a little too much for this one.

Monday, January 25, 2010

don't doubt it



here are the sketches for today. coming soon: reviews of Remi's Cafe and Legion. one was really good, the other not so much. can you guess which was which? it is a mystery.

Friday, January 22, 2010

on parking

Let me tell you a story about the harrowing hour I had on Tuesday.

It was the hour between 5:30 and 6:30. It all began when I arrived home to find another john parked in my parking space in front of the house.

Before I continue this story, I should probably explain why I have called this unknown driver a john. It’s simple, really. I think one of the neighbors in the apartments next door must be a prostitute. How else would you explain the large variety of cars that appear in my parking space for an evening and then are never seen again? Seems pretty obvious to me.

But anyway, one of these mystery cars was in my parking space. Or, well, it was very close to my parking space. The remaining area was rather small and I am not very good at parking. My anger level instantly rose from a two to an eight. There was, of course, off street parking available. You know, the off street parking that was an absolute requirement when I was looking at houses. The off street parking that was one of the selling points of this house. But why in the world would I ever park there when there should be a perfectly good parking space right in front of my house? Maybe I will feel more inclined to park back there when there are not 50 mph winds gusting the freezing cold into my face. Maybe then I will be willing to walk across my entire backyard. Until then, though, I demand parking in front of my house.

But alas, I had no choice this day. As I drive down the alley, I saw that Chris had not pulled very far into our parking area. I noticed this, but did not really take time to consider what it might mean. Instead, I sped in blindly, getting about halfway before my tires started spinning. Rather than stopping and attempting to back out while there was still time, I floored it, sending mud flying everywhere. Seriously, there is even mud on my windshield.

I must have been making quite a racket, because I drew Chris to the window. I saw a look of horror come across his face before he disappeared from the window and came running out into the yard, not even bothering to put shoes on.

“Stop!” he cried. “It is too muddy!”

Yes. I had noticed this.

When he saw the terrible trouble I had gotten myself into, he went back inside and put on his shoes. He tried pushing for a while as I tried to back up, but to no avail. Finally he told me to get out, that he would have a try. I was skeptical, but I got out anyway. When I did, I was distressed to find that my tires were actually half submerged in the mud. Like, seriously. I didn’t think that car was ever coming out. But lo and behold, he did it. He backed that car right out of there. It was amazing. I got back in and he went out front to direct me into the tiny parking space. With his assistance, I managed to squeeze in. I made sure to park as close to the mystery man as I could without actually hitting him. I hope he had a really hard time getting out of that space.

Finally, after much hardship, we went back inside. Chris had gotten out of work early, so he had told me he was going to cook something for dinner. That “something” was frozen Chicken Kievs and au gratin potatoes from a box. Not exactly the home-cooked meal I had been expecting, but hey, at least we would be eating at a relatively decent time. He had put these things in the oven just as I had pulled up out back, so they were merrily cooking along as we sat down in the living room to relax after the strenuous activity outside.

I noticed a strange sizzling sound coming from the kitchen, but I didn’t think anything of it until Chris lept up from his computer chair, muttering some sort of obscenity, and dashed into the kitchen. When he turned on the light, I could see the smoke billowing from the room, beautifully illuminated by the sterile fluorescent glow.

Almost as if on cue, the smoke alarm started going off. This is nothing out of the ordinary; that smoke alarm goes off if you even think about something warm. We call it the Delicious Food Detector, because it usually alerts us when our food is perfectly cooked. Not so much, this time.

Chris opened the oven door and more smoke poured out. Nothing was on fire; it was just very very smokey. I opened the side door so that the smoke would have somewhere to go, but it didn’t do much good. So I started fanning it with some unopened mail that had been sitting on the kitchen table. Just as it finally stopped shrieking, the alarm at the top of the stairs started up. As soon as I go that on quieted down, the one in the kitchen began anew. So there I was, running up and down the stairs, laughing like some sort of retard. I just found the situation really funny. And besides, running up and down the stairs was a fun way to get some exercise.

This went on for quite some time, since Chris didn’t want to leave the door hanging open. He was afraid that the cats might get out. He had nothing to worry about, though, since Mutz slept through the entire thing and Morgaine was firmly wedged between some boxes under the art room table.

Chris eventually removed the battery from the kitchen alarm (I have to remind him to put that back, come to think of it…) and the upstairs alarm eventually grew tired of bothering us. And that is the story of my traumatic hour.

Wow, this got rather long. Probably I should just write a book.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

shhh...

so it has been pointed out to me that I could have just used the scanner at my parents' house last night, but I was not quite sharp enough to figure that one out at the time.

just moments ago I tried to hook my scanner (an HP ScanJet 3400C which is at least ten years old) up to my laptop, but apparently it is too old to work with Vista. this is ridiculous and unfair. good money was paid for that scanner - I should be able to use it for as long as I like. HP is obviously trying to bully me into a new scanner, but I am not having it. I will just continue to use my desktop computer (which is still using moldy old Windows XP) to access my scanner, and I will not buy a new scanner until this one stops working.

but yeah, sketches:



I don't care what anyone says - Mordred is totally dreamy.

Monday, January 18, 2010

oh noes! I forgot to post some sketches yesterday! but sketching is the only resolution I have been keeping!

I assure you, the sketches exist. I just forgot to scan them. and I am at my parents' house right now, so I can't scan anything now. so I will put them up tomorrow, and then another one on Sunday. so don't worry, there will be more sub-standard sketches for you to gaze upon tomorrow.

hooray!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Jim Norton

last night me, Chris, and Shin went to the Borgata in Atlantic City to see Jim Norton.

a little background on this story. Shin bought us tickets for Christmas. I was super-excited, but as time went on, I began to majorly stress out about this outing. "oh no," I thought. "Atlantic City is two hours away - Chris shouldn't be driving that far with his bad rear brakes. but Shin has a very little car and I don't remember if I like his driving or not. but Chris is so directionally challenged, he will be freaking out if he has to drive... where will we park? what if we are too tired to get home? what if whoever is driving drinks and is too drunk to drive home?!" I should probably seek psychological help, but this has been my thought process almost continuously for the past week.

all of my worries were for nothing. Shin drove, his car was comfortable, if a little cramped and noisy. I approved of his driving wholeheartedly. we didn't get lost or drunk, and parking was clearly marked. everything was good.

but back to the actual reason for this trip - seeing Jim Norton. oh my God, it was so much fun. I do not know the last time I laughed so hard. I thought I would die several times from lung failure. seriously. I wouldn't suggest this guy to everyone, but if you are not easily offended and are looking for a good time? I completely recommend him.

even Amy Schumer, who opened for him, was pretty good. she didn't mention menstruation once, which is impressive to me since almost every female comedian seems to make unnecessary jokes about it. yes, we get it, you are a woman. that doesn't mean you have to constantly mention your period. goodness.

but yeah, lots of fun. we hit the slots for a little bit after the show, but decided to call it a night when we were $50 in the hole. we stopped at the Collegeville Diner on the way home - what a fancy place! the waiters and waitresses had uniforms and everything. and it was at least double the size of Queen City.

we finally got to bed around 3:30 am, and I didn't wake up until 12:15 today! I cannot even remember the last time I slept that late. it felt pretty good.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Lovely Bones

I went to see The Lovely Bones with my parents and sister last night. I was a little concerned going into it, since a co-worker told me that it had a pretty bad score on Rotten Tomatoes. but, not being one to trust other peoples' opinions, I was excited to see it anyway.

my opinion? I thought it was great. the visuals were amazing. the Heaven scenes were beautiful, and the real-world scenes looked almost exactly as I had pictured them. I really liked most of the actors they chose (with the exception of the mom, I wasn't really feeling her). Susie was perfect. Perfect.

they followed the story pretty closely, for the most part. I think it could have been longer, but it was already two hours, so I understand there wasn't really much they could do. I think they did a great job with the time constraints they were given.

I was wondering if it would be hard to follow for people who hadn't read the book, but I don't think that it would be. my dad didn't read the book, and he seemed perfectly clear on what was happening.

in short, I would say that watching this movie was akin to being emotionally pummeled, much like the book. I would recommend it to most anyone. screw those guys at Rotten Tomatoes.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

pretty tired

I heard a rumor that it is supposed to rain in the near future. do you know what that means? that means it will be more than 32 degrees outside! can you even believe it? I am pretty excited - I miss the rain.

we went to Red Robin for wings tonight, which was nice. I have been wanting to go back there since I went with my parents on moving day. I got the same thing that I got then - the Teriyaki Chicken Burger. deeeeeeelicious.

I still haven't been able to draw in my new sketchbook, which is frustrating. it is sitting next to me right now, but it is too dark to draw. my mens have the lights off to watch Heroes. maybe tomorrow there will be time?

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Bowie's in space

yesterday Chris and Steve participated in a 40k tournament hosted by Berks Warhammer 40k at HobbyTown. I went along for moral support. I almost made us very late - well, no. I did make us very late, but Chris was still able to play, so it was okay (though it did almost kill Steve). they didn't win, but they had a lot of fun, or so they tell me. I also had a good time watching; I can say that I have seen more hairy butt cracks so far this year than I saw last year, which is really saying something since this year is only two weeks old.

we went to Taco Bell for lunch. once again, they forgot my cinnamon twists. I always order cinnamon twists when I go to Taco Bell. in all the times I have been there, they have never, ever given me my cinnamon twists. we always have to go back for them or go without them. they also forgot one of Chris' burritos. they gave them to us, of course, when we went back and told them of their mistake, but that is not the point. this is no way to run a restaurant.

when the tournament was over, Steve and I were browsing the aisles. there was the coolest Yahtzee set I have ever seen, which I didn't buy because I had left my purse in the car. it's on my Amazon wish list, if you wanna buy it for me... but anyway, seeing it made Steve and decide to have a drunken Yahtzee night. and boy did we. I got three Yahtzees in one game. three! it was ridiculous! also, we were Rolling Around On The Ground drunk. like, seriously. ask anyone who was there - we were rolling around on the kitchen floor. I haven't been RAOTG drunk in a while, but I think it was just what I needed.

and do you know what? I wasn't hung over in the slightest, thus continuing my trend of never being hungover ever. no headache, nothing. I just slept til 11:00, which is pretty late for me. but we still got all the things done today that we intended to do, so no big deal.

I bought an awesome new sketchbook, which is part of my 4th resolution - draw more. I will draw (and scan and post) at least one drawing per week. not necessarily anything really awesome, just sketches and stuff that I doodle when I am bored. well, to being with anyway. I am hoping it will encourage me to do more meaningful works. so here is the first of (hopefully) many.


like I said, nothing amazing (or even moderately good), but at least it is something, right?

Friday, January 8, 2010

hipsters

this is one of the best hipster articles that I have ever read.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

it's true!

the vast stretch of time between January and April is entirely useless. it has no redeeming qualities. it is cold and terrible and there aren't even any holidays that involve days off from work. seriously, there is nothing to look forward to until my birthday, at the earliest. and now that I am old, that isn't even very exciting. oh goody, I am one year closer to my thirties. hooray!

I mean it, though. it is just cold and awful. I don't want to go anywhere, because going places involves going out into this windy, frozen wasteland. the mere thought of stepping outside makes me shiver. Chris argues that at least it is pretty outside this time of year, with all the snow and the ice. I argue that he is wrong. as we have witnessed, it is just as capable of being snowy and beautiful in December, rendering this miserable bunch of months entirely without merit.

I wish that people could hibernate. I would be more than willing to just sleep right through until spring.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

baguette

so, I bought a scale today. remember how I said I was 125 pounds? totally not true. at all. try, like, ten pounds more than that. I am never eating anything again. well, we are leaving soon to go eat dinner at Kim & Dustin's house. but after that? no food ever again.

watch out - product review ahead!

on Friday I took a shower at my parents' house and tried some of my sister's weirdo shampoo bar that she got for Christmas. I am talking, of course, about Lush solid shampoo. she has been raving about it ever since. I was skeptical - I mean, just look at the stuff. totally weird. and you only need three or four swipes across your hair? no way that works.

it totally works. it lathered up like you wouldn't even believe. even when it was still wet, my hair felt amazing. when it dried? it was soft and wavy and not frizzy at all. my newly-trimmed bangs fell exactly as I wanted them to as soon as I got out of bed. seriously. I was still a little concerned, since I only was my hair every other day (yes, there's the truth - I am pretty gross). I mean, sure it was great after washing. but would it still be nice the next day or would it be greasy and gross? let me tell you, it is lovely today. my hair normally looks a bit... off on the second day, but today I can hardly tell anything is up at all. I bet you wouldn't even know that it wasn't washed since Friday if I didn't tell you. so it looks like I am going to be buying a $9.25 bar of hard shampoo. sigh.

in other news, it is really cold and windy here. like 25 degrees with 50 mph winds. I am not sure when I accidentally moved to Alaska, but I would very much like to go back to a normal climate. but it is okay, because my Aunt Candy and Uncle Don came over yesterday and installed a new digital thermostat. so now it is set to automatically adjust itself to be warm (67 degrees) when we are home and awake and cold (63 degrees) when we are out/asleep. pretty cool, huh?

Friday, January 1, 2010

another year older

so. it's 2010 now. can you even believe it? I am both happy and sad to see 2009 end. it was a year that had really good things and really bad things. normally, this would just equal out into a mediocre year, but I don't think that is the case this time. I mean, come on, I bought a HOUSE this year. there is nothing mediocre about that. but some rather unpleasant things also happened that really can't be ignored.

all in all, though, I feel like it was a productive year. I accomplished a lot of things that I intended to do and am well on my way to some other goals. in that way, this year has been very successful. so that's good, at least.

I am making three "resolutions" this year. 1) to weigh less or something. having gained 30 pounds in the last two years (yes, that's right, I now weigh 125 pounds), I feel like it is probably time to do something about it.m I intend to eat less things and also get back into some sort of little "work out" routine on the treadmill. I don't really have a goal in mind, I will know when I am in the right place. but rest assured, I have no intention to go back down to 95 pounds. so don't worry.

2) write more blog entries. I resolve to write at least three entries per week. I would say one every day, but I know that won't happen. so why not be realistic and aim for three?

3) to get into some sort of routine at home as far as cleaning/cooking. sometime last year I tested a household planner for a week or two and it worked out really well. I will try to do this for the whole year and see if I can't whip that house into shape.