Tuesday, December 27, 2005

hmm...it seems like it's always the end of month when i remember that i haven't made a posting in forever...or at least in a month. just got through watching goodbye lenin for the 90th time and i remember getting into an argument the first time i saw it, saying yes the mother WAS looking at her son and had realized what he had done the whole friggin' time...and i remember the weird pride from the same person about etre et avoir who missed the whole point of the whole thing...arguing in the streets of london, arguing or shaking my head in disbelief...

chris gets here tomorrow afternoon and then.

and then i don't know.

but anyway, i've started realizing how cyclical my dissertation cycle is and it's mind boggling and how much else in my life is that way exactly and can i line it all up and see? and if i did and if it was...how do i start to end it? nameless and faceless, who am i?

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

the semester is over and i'm going to dc tomorrow via detroit and chris will join me there on the 28th...then we'll fly back on the 2nd. ah holidays. seems more calm so far than it has been over the last few years. so far.


Saturday, November 26, 2005

ok, too few posts lately, i know. i'm not sure where the time has been going. no, scratch that. i know. i think i'm finally getting out of the funk of the week before thanksgiving when everything seemed so random and out of control and i didn't know if i had the strength to do what was right...which drove me madder than i already am, trying to figure out if i had the strength to not fall, not fail, and end up doing what was just easy...just pass things off.

but who else would have been there? i don't know if i was the best person, given my penchant for dark humor during desperate times...i do it to help myself through it, to try not to break down...but i don't know if it's the best course of action for everyone else exactly...

as dr b said earlier in the week...we're smart people...but we aren't perfect people. and, damn, i was far, far from perfect during the time we were figuring out what exactly that t-shirt would say as the original shift came back to work, assaulted by memories of everything i've been through in this life...and i was there to protect my charges as best as i could, protect them from some of the insanity of spending time in hospitals, without trying to hide the reality of, the severity of the situation in a whole showboat down denial river...not just in egypt, you know...

Thursday, October 27, 2005

so tomorrow's my writing day at my secret writing cove, which really isn't that secret as in a "stealth location where no one could find me" but it pretty good. i feel like bursting into tears over it, especially when i see a dissertation from some other place that looks like, wow, someone really had a committee that worked with them and encouraged them and, fuck, does this look like a portfolio? where are the research questions, the methods, etc. it's just 6 papers all jammed together and i think...just like i have thought 100000000 BILLION TIMES already...this place, this illinois...this was NOT THE RIGHT PLACE FOR ME. obviously people are out there in the world, doing the things i want to do but are at places that dare to let people out of the boxes and walls of "correct" academic writing.

i had a chance. for a little while. to do an electronic deposit. but that was all during seattle-gate...back when it seemed quite possible that i was just about finished. it doesn't matter. this is a different story i tell right now. nothing's quite the same.
so i surrendered the last piece of evidence i had that said i was not from here at the dmv after taking the state's written exam (i passed...90%...no sweat) and the lady at the counter asked me how i liked illinois and i said it was alright and she flipped through my passport and said, oh, you've been all over the place...and, yeah, now? i'm living here.

it was vidodin time earlier in the week and to top it all off i got a head cold to add to the cramps so i've been in a very weird and snippy mood all week and it's c's bday on sunday and i need to order the cake still. and click. click. click. smile. and click.

and nano starts tuesday -- should i do it again? should i view it as the time to just get a shitload of writing done? it's hard not to view everything as completely imploding right now and, yeah, the world's gone mad and i ask "when, exactly, will i need to take a rollercoaster coast to coast? have rollercoasters suddenly become a viable means of transportation?"

Sunday, September 11, 2005

so yesterday a motely crew of 9 wimse-iers came with me to the children's museum and it was a lot of fun. most (all?) had never really walked around downtown so that was cool to visit a few places there with them...and laugh at honorary reo speedwagon way...it *is* really funny.

i'm really tired today and i'm sick of this weather. i just can't get motivated to give much of a crap about my *wardrobe* choices when it's in the 90s. i should never live in the deep south. ever.

and speaking of, i read on salon.com yesterday a story about a former playboy club bunny from the early 70s who spent a decade in new orleans and it was actually quite good. the city, as it was all those summers ago, is gone. i hope that they can rebuild but it's hard to hear about the destruction and to now envisage all the places i knew and loved being treated as *storage houses* for the displaced...no one should be treated the way they were treated, not in this so-called rich country of ours...their inhumane treatment in those early days after the hurricaine is only worsened by the heartbreak of hearing about separations from their pets...i can't even watch...

me, walking around with vrboy and sleepless and others after drinking way too much on the quarter...scenesters at underground afterparties...back in our young days...the steam and the sin and the spying off the balconies...jazz and drink...and tellers on the square and she told me it'd all work out and it wasn't until last night that it dawned on me...that maybe it has and it's spooky the way it all worked out...when i'd forgotten that part of the dream...

Monday, August 08, 2005

at kopi downtown this afternoon and i wonder if i have any dignity left at all these days and i started crying, sitting at the table while the counter girls made fun of the midlife crisis outside asking for bread crumbs to encourage the birds...crying because i overheard a guy at a table talking to two people who didn't know each other or him and he says "i'm just starting my graduate school career" and nonono never use that word, never use that word career because you just might end up as me, sitting at a table at a coffee shop with tears in your eyes as you think about your failing career and all the years and you think about leaving.

but to not move forward...would mean losing everything i've built up. but moving forward...may mean having to leave everything i have now.

to get to the core, i must dig deeply and trust the man behind the curtain with the very thing that will make him leave...or me leave...because i won't need...

because everyone leaves.
even me.

Saturday, July 30, 2005

not sure what's going on so far today...it's l's wedding day and i'm not sure what the "game plan" is...i'm supposed to get my hair pulled and tugged into place in about an hour and a half...

Saturday, July 23, 2005

lost in the same music from before combined with the music from then and i'm forming my dissertation soundtrack music and i think that i need to rip down everything down from my walls before i go insane.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

it could...it could be franky. or glasses or contacts. or it could be. it could be frank.

what the hell am i about now? hives out of the blue today and i imagine that it's from too much going on at the exact same time...and i have a strange feeling of...of what? of what?


Wednesday, July 13, 2005

so i was so enraged by the salon article ncramping my style by lynn harris (a.k.a breakupgirl) that i wrote the following letter to salon:I've been a Salon Premium member for many years now and this
is the first time I've felt really insulted by an article --
and it happens to be in my new "favorite" column "object
lust." While I'm glad that the author has found a solution
to her menstrual cramps by using portable heating pads,
there are many of us out there who have cramps so bad that
it lands us in the emergency room getting rough reactions
from ER staffers: "aw, your period is too much for you? try
having 'real' pain and then come back and see us."

Too many articles such as this one suggest that menstrual
pain is just a heating pad away from complete comfort. I,
unfortunately, suffer from endometriosis, which causes
debilitating cramps every month resulting in my having to
completely schedule my entire life around my period -- one
week out of every month I become a pain filled, completely
useless human being. To give an example of the level of
pain, consider having abdominal surgery without anesthesia
and then you are coming pretty close to understanding what
I'm talking about.

While I agree that a heating pad, if it works, is better
than "handfuls of advil," there are many of us out there for
whom this kind of advice ends up slapping us in the face and
makes our fight that much harder as it results in confirming
the old "oh, it's just in your head" myth of menstrual pain.
After having had surgery, referrals to every kind of doctor
under the sun, and trying every option on the market outside
of a hysterectomy (which I don't want to have but things are
looking grim these days) my doctor can't even look me in the
eye as she says "there's no solution for people like you and
I'm so sorry."

Salon -- please be careful when you print flip articles that
act as if menstrual pain was nothing but a little bit
of "hysteria" for "poor, weak women who can't handle a
little pain."
now let's see if they put it online...
note: this post is also posted at my weekly donationcoder column

the technology of periods...

yep. this week's column is about bleeding. the bleeding that comes every month for those of us grrrrls who aren't pregnant, children, post menopausal, or have some other sort of reason why they don't get their periods. my boyfriend's sister called last week when my period was just starting and i said "oh, you know, it's that 'lucky' time of the month." and she said "well, depending on your point of view, it is 'lucky'." and while i know what she meant...i wouldn't mind if this whole monthly business just went away...

yeah, it could. i could have a radical surgery that takes all my female inside parts away for good and submit to years of hormonal treatments, worrying about my bones breaking, mood swings (like i don't already have a hard time handling those as is), etc. i could also get a shot of lupron that would put me into menopause without the surgery bit...and risk migraines galore, more mood swings (more on this in a future column)...and no way to reverse the shot, left with just "waiting it out" which is not such a keen option. i could also take the pill continously like all these lovely commercials promise and "be free" of my period, only having it once every few months...which i have tried, only to instead get my period every single day and turn suicidal. then, finally, the depo provera shots that promise to work better than the continuously pill taking but brings with it that 3 months of "could be" hell.

oh poor me. what? am i worried that i can't wear white pants every day (as if)? oh no. brace yourself boys. this is a lesson for you all to learn, and learn well. for some of us? our periods are hell on earth. imagine having your "male parts" ripped off you, slowly, without any anesthesia while being knifed continuously in the stomach and back. that's the only equivalent i can think of to describe the complete hell that i go through, like clockwork, every month.

as i write this...a commercial for a birth control pill has just come on tv. oh why do they torment me with options that aren't open to me? see? i'm between a rock and a hard place -- if i take the pill, i risk getting tia's, which are better known as pre-strokes of a sort. yes, i'm one of those people who has those "warning signs" when they take the pill.

this morning i read this new "object lust" column in salon.com about these 'magical' heating pads that you put on your abdomin and, according to the author, has been such a miracle that she no longer needs to take advil. halle-fucking-lujah. i mean that's great for her. but if a heating pad can substitute for taking some advil? she has no problem with cramps. me? i'm in the er for shots of demerol, looking like a drug addict because i'm so insane from pain. my doctor last month? just folded her hands into her lap and, not looking in my eyes, just simply said "there's really nothing we can do for people like you."

yes, this column has a point. i'm one of those unlucky grrrls who have endometriosis -- this thing that causes insane, insane pain that comes with limited options with regard to what to do with the pain. wow. so thanks to a complete fuck up of nature, i'm stuck with having to run my life around my period because when those days come? i'm useless. i'm threatening to jump off of the tops of buildings just to get away from the pain.

i've tried to come up with new ways of thinking about my period. humor always works, right? like these tampons called dittie that have "empowering messages" on the wrapper. unfortunately my pain is so bad that i can't stand to have a tampon in most months. i appreciate the gesture and more power to them for going up against the tampax and playtex monopolies. i did buy some just to support them and on the off chance that one month i can stand using tampons and can, therefore, use them.

then mouser pointed out a funny little link yesterday, which sounds completely disgusting, but did make me laugh a lot. seems that earth-friendly types are now making their own washable menstrual pads. yeah. i just can't picture it. although maybe it will be featured in a future art piece of mine...

ok. that's enough for now, boys. thanks for reading. if you've read this far.
one of these days i'll get around to coming up with a new template for this thing but not right now...too much to do. it's cece's bday today and steve's bday tomorrow and, ugh, i don't even want to think about our collective ages...we don't, after all, look a day over 87.

listening to music that i downloaded onto my iTunes and remembering, slightly nostagically i might add, writing my master's thesis, uh, a long fucking time ago while listening to cds i'd put into my cd-rom drive in my old powermac and thinking that it was pretty cool and, god, those were the days...you know, back when burning your own cd still seemed like a crazy and exotic idea...back when videostores still had a pretty good selection of vhs tapes to rent? before the dvd craze?

i'm actually citing (or trying to get away with citing) this blog in my dissertation. an entry from the old microsoft days...back when this whole crazy idea came to life...back before everything turned to black? me, laughing hysterically earlier in the day, on the therapist's couch...thinking about how exactly to describe my dissertation, the evolution of the idea, the review of the idea...how i could go into insane detail..."dear diary, today i can't lift myself off the ground so i'm going to just lie here in the fetal position for, maybe, the next week or so. then i'll see how i feel."

it's nearly 2am and here i am on my desktop computer, trying to hammer out a few paragraphs, some explanation about how the fuck i came up with this dissertation idea and feeling too scared to sleep right now, feeling too tired to really make any sense of anything anymore...too sick of arguing over nothing, yelling about how either they are the devil or i am...either or. if it's not them...then it must be me.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

7/7 is the new 9/11 and this world is so fucked up and it's hard to know how to feel...my head's spinning and i feel that helplessness i felt years back -- has it really been that long -- when all those candles lit up the night in seattle...the stillness, the...blankness? if only i had confidence in any government on this earth...if only i had confidence that we really could stop all this killing...on all sides...if only, if only, if only...

and i don't care for the game of golf, thanks.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

this is a copy of this week's blog column at donationcoder

curious about life after death? this is what happens when you die:From: __________ <____@_____> Add To Address Book
Subject: Out of Office AutoReply: Wednesday July 6th: SPECIAL EVENT!
To: <______>

It is with great sorrow and sadness that we report to you that ______, the head of the ______, passed away on the morning of July 5, 2005. The family has asked that any communication be directed to the _______ at ______. Thank you.
"out of office"? damn. that's a hell of a way to find out that someone you know just died...

fuck cancer.

so this week's blog entry is dedicated to those who have "moved on" in the more perminent sense...in this life, anyway. the email that got "autoreplied" to me started me thinking about what IS the best way to tell people via email or any other electronic means that the person they just emailed...just died. certainly "out of office" just doesn't seem to be the right way to do things. i mean, wow, what if i had called? what would the equivalent be? a recording of some sort telling me "the person you are trying to reach has been disconnected" before patching me over to voicemail?

ok, i'm sorry if this sounds callous in any way. i don't mean it to be. the thing is, my friend is the latest in a whole bunch of friends to, uh, get cancer and die. so all i know at this point is sarcastic humor that serves as my defense mechanism for dealing with shit like this. i mean there are articles all over the internet on how to notify family and friends about death (example one, example two). the thing is? they say do not call, tell them in person. but now what do we do in this age of "autoreply"?

i googled death notification via email. i came up with this page written by someone who recieved an email about the death of an internet friend who they'd never met in person. is the pain any less great? looking further, i found this article on the baltimore city paper's website called ghosts in the machines: what happens to your online self when you die? in that article there's a link to died online which "will be back shortly" apparently. did they, too, die online? then another called my last email - "preparing today for tomorrow" - also not currently active. who knows if these companies will be back online. i suspect that during there first run attempts, some things went very, very wrong. i can't imagine that creating an automatic death notification system is any less, uh, troubling than setting up an "out of office autoreply."

i certainly don't have any answers as to how to handle death in this so-called "information age." all i know? the whole death thing just sucks.

american cancer society

bye my friend.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

it's 3000 million degrees in the city but the good news is that i finally found makeup that matches my paler than pale skin. there are all these products with "double white" and "pale freshness" in the title and that's a little nutty but cool for me. meanwhile pepperage farm cookies are everywhere and i guess that's the big import snack for them from the us.

an earthquake -- 6.0 -- was last night and it's the most popular talk at the conference -- everyone has a popular earthquake story to tell.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

onward to chicago then taipei in the morning and i'm sure people will be getting postcards as a way of hearing from me for the first time this year and now i'm heading to asia for the first time with pre-made cards to hand to taxi drivers to tell them where to drive me to and god an 18 hour flight (including a touch down in tokyo) ahead what do you do on a plane for nearly a day hopefully i'll have an aisle seat or i may have to tell the person in the aisle seat that if they dont get up they'll throw a blood clot and die and meanwhile i still haven't said anything about the j.o.b. but maybe i'll go get some kind of enlightenment in taiwan you never know you never know, right?

Sunday, May 15, 2005

from the e3 website: as a precautionary measure, bomb dogs will be on-site.


Thursday, May 12, 2005

bright lights, sad city

vegas strip, the traffic at night...i need to go where the night has no end because it seems that the sun burns more and more lately...
you know what? i think they've found the blog. i mean one week and complete silence...makes me wonder...

Sunday, May 01, 2005

so some ex-people in my life have been spotted on the scene calling themselves "artists" and it's ab-so-fucking-lutely pissing me off. so you once used the word "photograph" in conversation and now you're an artist. so you once walked into a gallery to use the bathroom? artist! you knew someone once who had a sister who had a friend who played the cello? artist! i am so sick of these pomo shitheads making the scene and it makes me want to scream in their faces...that is if i could stand seeing them face to face...i mean, fuck. so, ok, if i ran around saying i was the queen of england, i'd be locked up in a second. how 'bout these fuckers? KARMA POLICE! AFTER THEM!

depressed in las vegas

almost translucent, stuck in las vegas. so depressed that i wonder if my heart might stop in my sleep, maybe hoping it would...lost, confused...lying still, staring up at the ground for what seemed like years...what ended up being years...i'd find you a month later...i'd be ready to find you a month after that...i'm glad you were still on board...

Saturday, April 30, 2005

chicago's cloud gate

c and i took a trip to see the lights festival along michigan avenue last november. one night we walked through millennium park...this picture is of the weirdly cool cloud gate.

more of my pix...

Friday, April 29, 2005

posting and posting and posting on flickr and i'll soon be posting more pictures on my blog but i'm too wired and weird and winded to do any of that right now and my contacts hurt my eyes and i'm trying to lose all that thyroid weight before the conference in taipei and sometimes i really have to ask myself why the fuck i get myself into these situations in the first place?

Monday, April 25, 2005

i'm trying to find some peace in this world that right now doesn't seem to make a whole lot of sense. i'm angry at how bureaucracy creeps in to people's sense of humanity...fuck...to the point that they just become unthinking and unfeeling machines and i can't tell you how many times "ok computer" has marched through my brain today. people fear that there will be a time where computers become too human. but fuck, something's gotta act human, right? i mean it's fucking women's month and all i am getting is women pushing away from the situation...HELLO WTF WHAT IF THIS WAS YOUR DAUGHTER????

in the dorm, last night, slices of humanity in those who are younger...and i want to hug them all and tell them that they are worthwhile, that they are doing good jobs, and to never stop caring, never stop thinking, never stop.

as long as the sky exists
and as long as there are sentient beings
may I remain to help
relieve them of all their pain


Tuesday, April 05, 2005

no surprise here but i have to say this anyway, that the world fucking sucks some days...without a doubt. i mean how can someone with as much shit on their record as our secret friend keep getting passed forward, into my turf, again and again and again. our secret friend is one of those sociopath types who sends a chill down your spine every time you have to interact with them. and you feel that you've failed because they are still there. you beat yourself up, feeling like javert did in not understanding that people can change. but unlike valjean...the secret friend is out there to do harm. the secret friend is evil in its purest form. the secret friend is a sociopath and the game is not turning out in humanity's favor.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

my monthly curse is here and it's worse than it's been in the last few months but at least it's better than the alternative that i thought might have been true and, you know, i'm all for generic brands but when it comes to things like that...something about the brand you know helps ease your mind.

cold, rainy, and a screaming girl landed at my door, hurt, wet, muddy, drunk, hair missing due to chemo she said...chemo but not for cancer, just chemo...and i could hardly understand what was happening but i drove her home, gave her a coat and a towel, and i hope she's going to be ok...

Sunday, March 20, 2005

it's spring break -- woot -- which means i get a week to do some of my own shit for a change and that's especially nice after all the fallout from nightmare campus drinkfest 2k5 a few weeks ago. so for break i have a list about 3 pages long of things "to do." yeah, it's completely and overly ambitious but whatever.

i overdid it today at the gym -- i knew i was going to do that one of these days. something about catching a bit of dr. 90210 on tv and watching fat being removed from some woman's legs inspired me to run like hell on the treadmill because it seemed to me a less painful, less gross option than lipo...

Sunday, March 13, 2005

back from gdc and i'm groggy but glad to be home, even if i did leave everything in a total mess before i left...

Friday, March 11, 2005

i'm...so....tired. gdc 2005 is coming to an end tomorrow...more when i've had some sleep...

Friday, March 04, 2005

wow. so this is a new one on me. hfg it's march, by the way. so the uni has this unoffical st. patrick's day so that the bars can make money on st. patrick's day, which usually falls over spring break (or at least when the undergrads have started leaving for spring break). i'm a ta for a class that meets on friday afternoon. "unofficials was today, a friday. bars opened at 8am.

ok. so what. i did shit like that when i was their age. the catch was...today was the day that their group projects were due...and i couldn't reschedule it because it's a multisection class and the schedule was set by the lecturer, not me. well, i knew it was coming up, i told my class to please hold off in drinking until after their presentations. and they didn't. and boy...boy, they didn't. 3/4 were completely drunk. they might think that they were able to pull it off, that maybe i wouldn't notice how loud they were talking, the slurred speech, the incoherent statements, the way their eyes glazed over. but they would be wrong. who better to tell than someone who knows all the signs because they've done it themselves? i guess.

oh...if only they hadn't put me into this position...fuck.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

so what would you do if you were in my position? there's a girl that i supervise who is in serious trouble, the kind of serious trouble that i know all to well and too personally. so far she's been talking to all kinds of people in the uni cya manditory sense but no one that can really really identify with her situation, no one who has been there before. so do i do what my heart aches to do? cross that line and reach out to her? am i ready for that kind of group therapy? am i sane enough, healthy enough to walk forward with her? do i dare? do i dare.

Monday, February 07, 2005

woot! check out the latest issue (feb 2005) of game developers magazine, available at most borders bookstores but also online (for a fee you can download the mag). my game developers conference session at next month's conference in san fran is mentioned as an editor's choice session!!! omg wtf. woot!

Thursday, February 03, 2005

pickled herring aisle

pickled herring aisle uploaded by vrgrrl.

joensuu finland, that damn town located somewhere between bored and panicked and me in a grocery taking hundreds of crazy photos...these are mediocre times and people are losing hope...
waiting to hear word, probably swear words, about the chapters i sent via email yesterday...so tired from being too anal about the whole class prep thing...so much so that i ended up completely feeling like a fuck up but whatever. i think i have pink eye anyway.

Friday, January 28, 2005

at espresso waiting for e and it's my office hours and i don't think my section believes me when i say that it's at the coffee shop across the street but oh well. whatever. totally different vibe with today's class than yesterday's and i wonder why, so strange.

Saturday, January 22, 2005

flickr is going through some kind of upgrade but when they come back you should see a photo stream of mine in the bottom left corner (scroll down!) of this blog. i'll probably move it further up the page soon but for now...

anyway, i started teaching this week and it wasn't without some bizarreness but what else is new, huh? meanwhile it's freezing cold out and windy and snowing and, bleh, it's winter. i'm trying not to take any narcotics this weekend...it's that time of the month and i'm wondering if this new med that i'm on is going to help or not. so i'm just on advil for now...this could prove to be a giant mistake in a few hours.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

cold, cold. but i joined a gym today and therefore got off my ass...at least for one day...in the hopes that it will make the pain...