April 30, 2011

120: Favorite Things XIV

Too lazy/tired to write, so it's a Favorite Things in photos.



 Slightly creepy roads

Prince Harry
 I enjoy that he had to spend part of the big wedding day baby-sitting and dress-wrangling.

Pocket watches

click photos for their sources.

April 29, 2011

119: The Wedding (of course)

I spent the duration of the Royal Wedding unconscious, since I had to work today and didn't fancy staring at a computer screen for seven hours without my full six hours of sleep.  I did, however, catch the second kiss on the balcony while diligently scoping out photos of The Dress while scarfing down a donut.  The PBS rebroadcast of the whole shebang starts in about 10 minutes, so I'll settle in with some cookies and watch as much of it as I can stand, but I already have a favorite photo from the day:

via Tom and Lorenzo
(sorry about the wonky, too-wide formatting.)
After Pippa Middleton handled dress-train wrangling for the ceremony, it looks like Prince Harry took over at Buckingham Palace.  Cute.

Congrats to the new Duke and Duchess of Cambridge!  May they have a long and happy marriage.

April 28, 2011

118: Old Blue Eyes

Picture of the day:

via We Heart It

Pretty kitty.  Someday, I'll have a cat.

April 27, 2011

117: Kool-Aid

A brief missive from the land of No Child Left Behind:

There's an occupational hazard when you're scoring standardized tests for a living: sometimes, students produce the same wrong answer so frequently that you start to think it might actually, secretly, be right.  In other words, you start drinking the Kool-Aid.  I started out reading essays, and after a few days, a number of my coworkers were grumbling that, faced with the same misspelling for hours on end, they were forgetting how words were actually spelled.  Then I scored short-answer questions assessing punctuation usage.  After three days, I wasn't sure I had ever known how to properly use a comma.  Does, it, go after; or. before? this! word?


Here's the moral of the story, kids: study hard, learn to write and express yourself properly, and read up on commas and semicolons.  It will serve you well.  Or, at the very least, it will keep the people that score your tests from going mad.

April 26, 2011

116: Beg and steal and lie and cheat

The slightly more profane version of this song was stuck in my head all day, which was a little distracting while scoring standardized tests.  I listened to it twice during lunch, to no avail.  And then I watched The Voice, which features Cee Lo as one of the four celebrity coaches, so it's just been a Cee Lo-licious kind of day, I guess.  Which makes up for the end of the workday being a little aggravating.


April 25, 2011

115: Come as you are

I always listen to Nirvana on Mondays.  I don't know why, but it just seems right.  So have some early '90s grunge for your Monday blues:

April 24, 2011

114: Easter

photos via We Heart It

Happy Easter.  I spent mine at a family lunch, then frantically clearing a path through the house for the heating and cooling guys tomorrow.

April 23, 2011

113: Favorite Things XIII

You may notice a theme in this week's favorites.

Amy Pond
Plucky, headstrong, and fiery, Amy is always fun to have around, especially since she can easily dominate not only her own husband (see Rory Williams, below), but also one of the biggest personalities out there: The Doctor.  Sure, she sometimes gets relegated to the damsel-in-distress role, and the preview for next week's Who has some horror-movie screaming from Amy in it, but I can't help being awfully fond of her.  Come along, Pond.

via We Heart It
Just as big, blue, and intermittently reliable as always.  I love seeing how different writers tackle characters' reactions upon seeing the interior for the first time -- the way it was handled in "The Impossible Astronaut" was quite funny, and both Mark Sheppard and Arthur Darvill hit exactly the right tone.  As fond as I was of the Eccleston/Tennant TARDIS, there's something about the new Smith-era console room design that appeals to the steampunk fan in me.  If the TARDIS were real, and I was in it, you'd have to strap me down to keep me from pushing buttons and turning dials (which would probably send us to the year 3008 or something).

Rory Williams
Honestly, one of my very favorite things about the new season of Doctor Who is seeing Arthur Darvill's name in the credits.  Amy's great and all, but I adore Rory.  He's steadfast and brave, but we really don't notice, because most of the time, he's just Amy's slightly goofy, very put-upon husband, who is resigned to being Mr. Pond.  I've said it before, and I'll say it again: if Karen Gillan couldn't make it to the set, I'd happily watch The Doctor and Rory Show.

The Doctor
He's nine hundred years old, travels through time and space in a bucket-of-bolts blue box, has saved humanity countless times and seen the very best and very worst in all of the universe at all points in history.  Also, he's an alien.  Seriously, what more do you need from a sci-fi hero?

Doctor Who in the USA
I loved seeing some vistas in "The Impossible Astronaut" that weren't shot in a quarry in Wales.  Welcome to the extremely telegenic American West!  I'm not thrilled with some of the still-fake American accents (although Mark Sheppard's is remarkably good), but at least they got the scenery right.  Between this and the Neil Gaiman-penned episode to come later this season, I'm super-excited for what's to come in the next several weeks.

via We Heart It

April 22, 2011

112: Girl detective

Telling a story with pictures:
...and part-time librarian...
...discovers a series of diaries...
...that leads to some covert detective work.
Our librarian-investigator...
...finds herself chasing down leads...
...that lead to unlikely adventures...
...in mysterious places.
Will she find what she's looking for?
Or will she be dangerously entangled in a web of intrigue?

Tune in next week to find out!
(not really. but this was fun!)

all photos via We Heart It

April 21, 2011

111: My kingdom for a desk

See, I need one of these.
That's totally the problem.
(via We Heart It)
In my never-ending quest to explain away my procrastination and utter lack of productivity, I've decided the latest problem that keeps me from getting more writing done is that I don't have a proper place to sit down and hack away at it.  It's hard to get stuff done when you have to sit on the floor, right?  I don't even have a chair in my bedroom!  How could I possibly work in there?  And I'd never be undisturbed in the communal spaces.

Lately, I've resorted to squinting at the screen of my iPod during my two fifteen-minute breaks at work and frantically tapping out dialogue in the Notes app while walking around the building (and then going back and correcting the typos in every other word, because it looks like I was typing with my toes).  It's not the most productive of habits.  Theoretically, I'm supposed to have something done for my designated taskmaster, my friend Sasha, by Sunday, but I'm not optimistic.

But if I had a proper workspace, man, I'd have the Great American Novel finished by next week.  Totally.


April 20, 2011

110: Making pictures

I took a digital photography class during my last semester of college in an effort to cultivate another hobby that I now practice only sporadically.  The instructor was an impressive documentary photographer in his own right, besides being a great teacher, but it was always a little jarring to hear him tell us to "go out and make some photos."  Make rather than take, because we, the amateur photographers, were creating the shots, rather than just capturing them.  It's a term also used by the White House's chief photographer, Pete Souza, in The President's Photographer: Fifty Years Inside the Oval Office, which I just finished reading yesterday.  Souza and a number of former White House photographers talked about documenting chapters of history -- LBJ's photographer, Yoichi Okamoto, said he wanted to take/make photos that people will see in five hundred years -- and the collection of photos from the tenures of former presidents from JFK to George W. Bush was fascinating and enlightening.  It also reminded me how much I love old photos.

 (First three photos via We Heart It, last two are of my grandfather during the Korean War.)
These photos were definitely made.  Mine are still taken.  I've got a long way to go.

April 19, 2011

April 18, 2011

108: They say of the Acropolis where the Parthenon is...

I've got a definite case of the Mondays, so rather than even attempt to come up with a real blog, I'll just share this clip from QI that always makes me laugh so hard I nearly cry.

I adore Stephen Fry.

April 17, 2011

107: Movable feast

via Things Organized Neatly
Sandwich inspiration for the upcoming week of that most portable of lunches.

April 16, 2011

106: Favorite Things XII

Drive-by favorites:

Sometimes, you just want some good explosions.  Mythbusters always delivers on the pyrotechnics and the science, to boot.  Whether Adam, Jamie, Grant, Tory, and Kari prove or disprove the myth, they always make the process entertaining.  (Also, Grant Imahara is the creator of Craig Ferguson’s robot skeleton sidekick, Geoff Peterson, which makes him automatically awesome.)

Detective Tomas "TJ" Jaruszalski
Law & Order: Los Angeles came back this week, and we said our final goodbyes to both TJ’s partner (Skeet Ulrich, we hardly knew ye) and TJ's mustache (which I will miss more than Skeet Ulrich).  My mother thinks Corey Stoll’s head looks like a cue ball now, and I can’t really disagree.  Regardless, I was reminded, while watching the new episodes this week, that TJ was my favorite character from the show's early days, and I hope that, as he grieves for his slain partner, the writers don't sacrifice the wry, amusing essence of the character on the altar of interior melodrama.  (...and now I'll just pack up my pretentious language and move along.)

The Secret Lives of Dresses
I'll admit it: I judge books by their covers.  I was unspeakably disappointed that Twilight had such appealing cover art.  This book by Erin McKean, however, has both a pretty cover and an enjoyable, well-written story.  Not a coming-of-age story as much as a figuring-out-how-to-be-an-actual-grown-up story set against the backdrop of small-town North Carolina, I was so engrossed in this book that I read about half of it in a day (and most of that was during the long stretches of waiting around during my training at the new job).  I think part of the reason I liked it so much is that Dora, our heroine, is a liberal arts major who has no idea what she wants to do with her fancy degree.  Girl, I feel you, for real.

Wayfarer sunglasses
RIP, sunglasses.
My trusty Target wayfarers broke this week, and I've been at a loss ever since.  I'm halfheartedly trying to find a pair to replace them, but I'll probably never find another pair that's black on the outside and purple on the inside (purple! my favorite color!), so I'm seriously considering just super-gluing the suckers back together.  Those glasses made it through airport security about eight times during trips to San Francisco, Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles, survived being tossed around with all the other stuff in my purse for about three years, and went out in subzero cold and super-humid ninety-degree weather.  Of course, all of that contributed to the huge split in the frames that makes them unwearable now, but my point is this: those glasses have been good to me, and I'll never have another pair exactly like them.  Farewell, sunglasses.  (I will also miss these sunglasses more than I will miss Skeet Ulrich.)

This video
Anderson Cooper would, apparently, have been my best friend if we'd met as children.

April 15, 2011

105: Burned out

I sat in a chair and read essays for seven hours.  That's all.  So why am I exhausted?  I had to drink a Coke at 5:00 just to stay upright.

I took the above photo of my bedroom wall with my iPod and put it through Instagram's Lomo filter about fifteen minutes ago, and now it's on Twitter and my blog.  Remember when we used to have to take film to be developed before we could look at pictures?  It's odd, living in the future.

April 14, 2011

104: Excuse my drool

 My friend Sasha cruelly sent me a link to Grub Street (NYMag.com's food blog)'s rundown of 101 of the best pastas in the country.  I have a genetic predisposition to going weak at the knees for pasta (I assume, since my mom and I both eat disgustingly huge portions on spaghetti night), so sending me a hundred and one gorgeous photos of mouth-watering pasta is terrible enough, but I haven't even had dinner yet.  So click over and enjoy some photos of pasta while I pick myself up out of this puddle of drool and shuffle off to eat.

April 13, 2011

103: Logical consequences

According to Flickr, this is my most interesting photo:

Plan of action
Washington Ave. Bridge, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, 2006.
Since the bridge gets repainted every year, this panel lives on only in memory and digital photograph form, but it's always interesting to see who shelled out money to promote their club (or whatever) on the bridge.  This year's winner of the Uh, Okay, If That's What You Want To Devote Your Time To award is MAZE, the Minnesota Association of Zombie Enthusiasts.

(Of course, as the former vice president of the campus Harry Potter club, I shouldn't really talk.)

April 12, 2011

102: Not John McEnroe

Exhausted and overwhelmed.  But you know what always makes me feel better?  Anderson Cooper's anecdotes.

Never fails.

April 11, 2011

101: Enchanted

This is what I've been working on for about a month.  It's the Enchanted Castle Afghan pattern by Nicky Epstein in baby blanket size.  It just needs a gift tag and it's ready to be passed along to its recipient before she gets too big to use it.  Excuse me while I scuttle off to be proud of myself for a while.  (click to enlarge the photo)

April 10, 2011

100: Favorite Things XI

Short on words, a day late and an item short of the usual five, but here's what got a thumbs-up last week.

via We Heart It
Biking weather
I scrubbed down my bike and took it for a spin late in the week, and every time I looked out the window this weekend, there was a bicyclist going by.  Awesome.

Getting hired
A paycheck is a nice, nice thing, even if it's only for a month.  This next month of work will fund my entire trip to Vancouver later this summer.

I joined the modern age with an iPod touch this week, and I discovered the wonders of apps.  Apps!  They can give you all kinds of cool information without having to be tethered to a computer!  How long have we known about this?

via We Heart It
First thunderstorm of the season last night.  I love severe weather season, both because I sleep better during thunderstorms than at any other time, and because I know it means they're shooting another season of Storm Chasers on Discovery Channel.

April 9, 2011

099: Signs of the season

Water, water everywhere
Loring Park, Minneapolis, 2008.

The last stubborn snowbank melted today.  It's only a matter of time until I'm finding ways to spend the whole afternoon outside.

April 8, 2011

098: All in a row

After spending the required time reading in the sun (and ignoring the radio so I wouldn't worry about the Twins' home opener -- but we won!), I spent the overcast part of the afternoon organizing my grandmother's sewing pattern library.  Afterwards, my head was filled with straight lines and nicely categorized things.  (And then I watched some Burn Notice and now it's all explosions, so I might as well watch some Mythbusters and continue that trend.)

Click photos for their sources.