Wednesday, December 28, 2011

He Said; She Said; Me Said; I Said What?

He: That went right over your head didn't it?

She: No; it didn't go over my head. I just didn't understand what you said.

Me: Isn't that the definition of over your head.

He: Yeah...

The preceding was an actual conversation that took place at work yesterday. Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction but more often truth is funnier than fiction. You know what else is stranger than fiction aye-ayes. They kinda weird me out. I mean look at this thing.

And that's how they're supposed to look. How bizarre, how bizarre...
Also bizarre is the fact that my mind just jumped from Daubentonia madagascariensis to 90's pop hits.

All this is very amusing, at least I think it is, of course there's a very real possibility that I find this amusing because I've only had 15 total hours of sleep in the past 4 days. The rest of you may be reading this wondering why I even wrote it. Of course you likely wonder that anytime you read what I write. But as I was saying; all very amusing but it's time for me to go.

Next time pictures of the my Christmas decorations. We've put something of a different spin on "deck the halls" this year.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Interstellar Species

I often think that my mind is odd to an extent that surpasses the level of oddity displayed by my friends and by most of the general population. After all I know few people with such a deep and abiding fascination with toast and none of my friends has ever begun a blog simply for the sake of voicing whatever oddities happen to be passing through their mind at the moment. Peer pressure may also have played into the creation of the blog but that really isn't the point. The point is that finding the odd and absurd in the decidedly normal is something that seems to appeal to me more than most. But every so often one of my friends will present something that comes from so far out of left field that even I'm not sure what to make of its arrival. The great and mighty "Cosmic Possum" is one such thing. It should be noted that the great and mighty nature of the Cosmic Possum is purely assumption on my part. The originator of the Cosmic Possum made no such claims about the possum; the assumption about it's nature is based entirely on my experience that all things "cosmic" are by extension great and mighty. And yes; by personal experience I do mean what I've read in comic books. The only thing that can be said of he possum with any certainty is that it is. There is no rhyme nor reason to its existence and it needs neither to justify its place in the universe. If indeed he belongs to this universe at all. But from where, you may be wondering, did the Cosmic Possum come. In short no one knows. The possum's existence was first realized some months ago in the early morning hours when my friend woke his wife with only these two words, "Cosmic Possum". An occurrence she found less than pleasing. I suspect that her mind, still muddled with sleep, failed to grasp the momentous nature of that moment. For had she realized what was before her she would certainly have been as awed and inspired as was her husband. I know that when he greeted me later that day with the same two words I was all but overwhelmed, and more than a little confused. But back to the possum. Perhaps the possum did not exist until that very moment, his existence inextricably linked to be moment of discovery. Or perhaps he has existed since time immemorial simply waiting to be revealed. I don't suppose it much matters. That the possum exists and that he entertains is the truly important thing here. So until next we meet may the mystery of the interstellar marsupial amaze and amuse you and yours as it has me and mine.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

It’s hard to sweat the small stuff when it’s cold outside

….okay, so not *that* cold. 
I intended to do a short tutorial on “How to Stay Warm in the Frigid North” today; however, the weather gods have blessed me with 50 degree weather in Pittsburgh!! 
Therefore, discussing down vests, hand-knit scarves, ice scrapers, new leather boots, and smart phone appropriate gloves seems, well........un-necessary. 
…..and so instead, I present to you: THE SMALL STUFF.
      1.) LEEK soup: My mother made her own version of this Irish favorite this evening.  ….not to be confused with LEAK soup, which aided by a cracked piece of Tupperware, I had two weeks ago.
 2.)  Hall Decking, Gay Apparel, and Fa-La-La-La-La-ing:  With the help of a couple of monk(e)s, I have provided a photo of said “Hall Decking.”  I have also expanded my “Gay Apparel” collection with a pair of red boots and “jeggings” (I learn something new every day).  ……and of course there has been much enjoyment of the Christmas music.

3.)   Tomorrow, I will be going to New York!! 
Before you blow your “non-Mundane” whistle, please note that I will be traveling to upstate New York and not “The Big Apple.”  We’re talking Maple Syrup and Holstein country, not designer pocketbooks, and purse dogs.  ….just say’n. 
See Ya’ll on the flipside.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


After two weeks of being exiled to the library, I am on vacation!!
Vacations are typically too exciting to be reported upon here at the “Extraordinarily Mundane Life”; however, I’m taking exception to this as I am vacationing in PITTSBURGH.  Yep, The Buckle of the Rust Belt…..although the city itself lacks luster, vacationing with my family is anything but “boring.” 
I realize Christmas has taken center-stage now for quite some time and will invariably come back up over the next week, but today, I would instead like to draw your attention to another holiday: BIRTHDAYS!
My little brother’s birthday (he turned 28) was in November.  So why am I bringing this up now you ask?  .....well his “Birthday Season” was extended until mid-December when I able to deliver his birthday gift by hand.  This year’s birthday gift was a 24 page hand-made card done MAD LIB’s style.  Sure it was a little bit of a throw-back to third grade English homework, but knowing verb tenses these days in practically a superpower.  …..and it was there that our stand in hero “Smelly Pointy Fighting Muskie” was born, saved the day, and was awarded for his deeds.
Happy Tuesday, ya’ll!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Deck The Halls...

My Christmas preparations are well under way with the total number of presents still in need of purchasing numbering only one, which makes me Christmas morning happy, and decorations taking shape I'm beginning to feel positively festive. As a result and in keeping with the theme of trying something new I've decided to send Christmas cards ths year. I know; less than two weeks out; some may not make to their final destinations it in time especially since I've decided to make them from scratch. But I've got a great, if do say so myself, and unique, I think, idea for some cards that are a little different and completely in keeping with the spirit of this blog. This first year will be something of a trial run with only a limited number of card going out due in large part to the time constraints I find myself facing. If only I'd had this idea two weeks ago... Oh well. I'll have pictures of the decorations I'm working on in the next few days but the cards will have to wait until Christmas day as I don't want to ruin the surprise. If you don't get one in the mail be sure to check back here on Christmas for your card. Now if you'll excuse me I need to go check my eyelids for leaks.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Christmas Morning Happy

Christmas shopping has officially begun and whilst I’m not really that over joyed about the process, I really enjoy seeing all the smiles on Christmas morning. 

 ….but seriously, why should “Christmas Morning Happy” be relegated to only Christmas Morning?   

For me, there are many things throughout the year that make me “Christmas Morning Happy.”  This week, such experiences include:
Purchasing a fun new pair of shoes at a serious discount.
Discovering $2 in the pocket of a jacket I haven’t worn since last Christmas.
Being gifted a wreath by a neighbor.
…….and lastly (but not leastly) BRIAN’s Christmas Tree (see yesterday's post), which is most excellent!! 

What makes you happy?

'Tis Season

With Thanksgiving safely behind and Christmas rapidly approaching the time for festive decorations is upon us. In the intrest of protecting humanity from extraterrestrial invaders I've decided to stick to stick with indoor decorations. To start this year off I have, for the first time, purchased my own tree. I went with a fake, some say simulated but let's be honset here, tree as I don't currently have the time to worry about maintaining a real tree. As tiny fake trees go it isn't bad and I'm not going to complain about a prelit tree which cost less than ten dollars. I finished decorating the tree, for now, this afternoon and I couldn't be happier with how it turned out. Take a look...

I'll be doing some additional decorating over the course of the next few days so stay tuned for even more of our unique take on holiday preparations.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Ceiling Wax...

Is what I will soon be gazing upon as I head to bed after a day thoroughly enjoyed. Well not ceiling wax really... Actually just a ceiling... No wax.

Went shopping with my sister and our friend Sarah. I spent just under 30 dollars and walked away with a vintage camera tripod, a sweet little lamp from the 50's or 60's and two sets of encyclopedias. Not sure what I'm going to do with the tripod right now but maybe I'll use it as an excuse to buy a camera in the near future. The lamp will be gracing my desk as soon as I get it clean. And the encyclopedias are destined to become a set of lamps as soon as my work schedule allows. Which may mean the end of next week since I'm scheduled 16 hours a day for the next three days and then I'm going to need a day or so to recover before I start playing with electricity. The ridiculous hours are the result of my trying yet another new experience. Working at Walmart... That's right I now have a second job working overnight stocking for Wally World. Not super excited about the hours or losing that much sleep but the good news is I'll be out from under my student loans in no time. And sleep deprivation makes my writing ever so interesting. So you can look forward to that... You can also look forward to the return of the fan favorite "toast" sometime in the very near future as he has been sadly absent in recent posts and I miss him... So sad... Also sad is how badly I'm abusing the ellipses... So very, very sad...

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Nice Guys Don't Wear White Belts

Dear “Nice Guy:”
I keep hearing about you.  You have “Good Manners"…..which is nice, but being a “Nice Guy” with “Good Manners” has gotten to be passé.  You’re a dime a dozen and your “polite” conversation is boring.  I realize as women we often fall for the “Bad Boy” and this is a mistake, but what we’re looking for is a daring adventure.  ……and we’d be far happier going on it with YOU.  We’re glad you went to “man school” and love the fact that you can flawlessly grill meat, back trailers up with precision, and chop down trees with a single swing of your chain saw.  I’ll even award double points of those of you who can gracefully carve a turkey at the table, pick out a diamond engagement ring on your own, and order a bottle of wine in a restaurant……but we still want more.   Here are a few of the things we’d like:
Get REAL with GOD.  Few things are sexier than a man that fully embraces faith.  Faith is inherently vulnerable……but we also realize it takes WAAAY more strength to be vulnerable.  We admire that.
Be a valiant warrior.  Winning our hearts is only the beginning…..but if you can do that, you can do ANYTHING!  …..and you don’t even need to know which end of a machete is the business end.  We’d be happy if you’d start by waging war on the “statistical norm.” 
Quit settling for *Average* White Male (….or whatever color you are).  Not because we aren’t okay with you being average…..but we aren’t into “settling” and don’t want you to be either.   If you’re already average, we believe you can do better…..start your journey, we’ll back you up the WHOLE way.
Talk to us.  There is no need for you to fear confrontation.  We all have a pair of “Big Girl Panties” and are a happy to use them.
…..and this list could go on, but you get the point.  WE BELIEVE YOU WERE MADE FOR SOOOO MUCH MORE…..there is nothing to fear that GOD can’t handle. Come find us.
“The One”
PS – Oh, and please don’t wear white belts…..or white accessories of any kind.  As the British would say, “It’s for the birds.”
…..and now back to dreaming about the hour when I get to employ my favorite word that uses excessive “Z’s.”
Night Ya’ll!

Monday, December 5, 2011

That Which Is Other

The time has come the walrus said; to talk of other things; of shoes and ships and ceiling wax, of cabbages and kings... Or we could just discuss the psychological implications of conversating with a walrus. But maybe; just maybe the walrus was onto something. While we here celebrate the mundane we aren't at all opposed to other things. Which is not to say that we aren't opposed to anything. I am opposed to the use of any slang which requires more z's than would be available in a game of Scrabble and my coauthor is opposed to men wearing white belts... What I do not oppose is the occasional break from my comfort zone. To that end and because I often find that new and exciting things give me an even greater appreciation for the old and mundane I have decided to make a point of seeking out and experiencing these other things. Sunday I ate frog legs. Who knows what the rest of the week will bring.

Thursday, December 1, 2011


Yep, Final’s Week CRAZINESS is in full swing, so I’ll keep this post short and sweet.  I’m basically up to my elbows in research on marginal art, the origin of the Riace Warriors, sleep deprivation exercises, and caffeine……but of course knowing that my state of consciousness…..or rather unconsciousness is probably the same as the rest of my college compadres, one of my colleagues and I are hatching a plan to provide love, hope, and peace among other things to those in need during this CRAZY busy time of year.  More on this project Tuesday.

Art Appreciation

Today is this week's art appreciation day.  Which is not to say that that I don't appreciate art the other six days of the week but today we had a scheduled appreciation.  My friend Jason is graduating from East Carolina University and had his senior show and reception this evening.   Most of Jason's work is in linoleum reductions and draws influence from the the graphic style of comic book art.  Now; I exist in a state completely devoid of artistic ability, at least as far as the fine arts are concerned, so I am usually impressed by pretty much any art more intricate than stick figures but I found Jason's work particularly interesting.  First because I find the process behind a linoleum reduction intriguing and for the way in which he married fine art techniques with a more cultural arts comic book feel.   He made a point during the show of stating that bridging the gap between fine and cultural arts was one of his goals and I think he succeeded.  The theme for the bulk of the pieces he showed were the seven deadly sins.  For example wrath...

And gluttony...

I also decided to purchase several of the prints he had for sale. I acquired two prints of pieces not in his deadly sins series.
The first is of koi...

And was something he did as an experiment in styles other than linoleum reductions.  The second is of the Marvel comics character Thor...

And as a comic geek I simply had to have one.  And yes it is pink.  So what.

On a tangentially related note I've discovered that when natural light is unavailable and the standard incandescent light found in my home proves ineffective a Surefire high output LED weapon-light is a remarkably versatile lighting solution for photography.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I believe!!

… many things, but Santa Claus never *really* was one of them…….although “pretending” made for a fun game of make-believe as a kid.
 Here are a few of the things I do believe (not alphabetized): 
I believe in love…..the kind that *really* never quite gives up.  I believe in miracles…..the kind that can happen on any street and often does.  I believe in people…..because without them it would be a lonely world.  I believe artists were sent to speak to those who must “see to believe.”  I believe in second chances, and third chances…..well really as many chances as it takes.  I believe beauty isn’t found in “beautiful” things, but rather by going through difficult times and finding the silver lining.  I believe life is taken far too seriously.  I believe in playful humor.  I believe in laughing at myself….and letting others laugh along too.  I believe in the power of a letter….a *real* heart-felt letter….and even more if it’s the kind with a stamp on it.  I believe God can change lives…..and believe THAT is change you can believe in too.  I believe Christians are the poorest advertising for Christianity.  I believe we are all masters of our own destiny.  I believe my life is an epic adventure. 
I believe in forgiveness and grace and I believe in the GOD that authored both.  …..and it is HIS story of grace, love, forgiveness, and reconciliation that begins with CHRISTMAS… let’s get this crazy season cranking.  
I also believe my neighbors are some of "those" people Brian mentioned that are trying to hail the mothership with their holiday themed galactic lighthouse.....but I'll let you decide.

Say What?

Oh boy, one of those days when I'm supposed to write a blog but Nothing really jumps out at me. Maybe he's practicing for the long jump in the 2012 summer Olympics I can't think of any other reason for all that jumping... I just wish he'd find a different target.

But let's not make much ado about Nothing. There will be plenty of time for that if he medals in London. Intsead let's talk about Something. I hear she's up to all kind of crazy stuff... And she's heavily involved with some fairly mundane things as well. I know; kind of vague. But that's usually how it goes when you're talking about Something.

I thought we might talk about Everything but he has so much going on I'm not really sure where to start. So maybe we'll just stop here for the night.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Zen And The Art Of Black Friday

As the title may imply I did not participate in this years "buy nothing day" which is really as much of an overreaction as the phenomenon it is intended to counter. And while I've already pointed ut that camping out at Best Buy a week before Thanksgiving borders on lunacy and is well into stupid's zip code I don't really understand the need to refuse to buy anything on Black Friday. I can appreciate the desire to not get caught up in the consume or die madness that seems to overtake so many midnight shoppers but if you can't manage to go shopping on Black Friday without losing it I think the problem probably lies with you. Instead I choose to approach this day as exactly what it is... Friday. As in the day after Thursday and right before Saturday. So this morning I slept until a reasonable hour woke up and did a little shopping. First to Target for some deodorant and mouth wash. I think we can all agree it's best if I don't stink.n And then over to a Black Friday sale most seemed to have overlooked in their 42" flat screen frenzy. The new used bookstore in town, the store is new the books are used, had buy one get one free books from 8am until noon. And while I don't embrace the madness I can certainly appreciate a good deal. So I traded in some old books and stocked up on some new reading material. And for those who think books are old fashioned and that I should have gotten the flat screen instead let me remind you that books were flat long before TVs. Books are like the kids who liked that band before they got famous. Setting the trends not following. Anyway... I walked away with over six hundred dollars worth of books and spent less than fifty. All on books I had already planned to pick up at some point when the budget allowed; which, thanks to the sale, was today. And that is the key to Black Friday. Treat it like any other day. Don't go crazy and don't buy what isn't in your budget. The fact that a flat screen TV is only two hundred dollars does not by extension mean that you need one; especially if the transaction requires you send a dozen people to the infirmary. And on the other hand don't pass on buying something just to make a point. If you've the luxury of indulging in such silly ideals then I'm sure you're dressed and fed so we all know you buy things. Don't be snob. If it's on sale and you're just going to end up buying it next week anyway then go ahead and see if the crazies left any on the shelf and get it while it's on sale if possible.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Silly Stuff & Other Things I'm Thankful for......

I am thankful for soooo many things, but here are just a few….in alphabetical order:
Airplanes, Chocolate Ice Cream, Chocolate Parfaits, Chocolate Pecan Pie, Church, Clean Sheets, Clean Slates, Clean Water, Family, Friends, Friends of Friends that become my Friends too, Fuzzy Socks, Girlfriends, Growth, Honesty, Legos, Life, Martinis with Olives, Monkeys, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, New Friends, Old Friends, Paint Brushes, Photographs, Polka Dots, Red Bull, Second Chances, Silly Stuff, Simplicity, Table Saws, The Book of Esther, This Blog, Vibram Five Fingers, Wish Bones, Yellow Paint,  and You.
…..but most importantly of all, I’m thankful for a GOD that weaves all of these things into the most epic adventure ever, MY LIFE.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

As slow as this semester has gone, the end of it seems to be approaching far too rapidly!  …..and therefore I’m grounded.  Well, at least until I finish writing the two term papers I have yet to start, finish five more of my eight painting series,  put together a photography presentation, and miscellaneous other things which are of much lower impact to my grade and therefore of lower importance.
The good news is: the library will be closed for the next three days!! 
……the bad news is: the library will be closed for the next three days!!
This is good, because it may force me to take a little bit of a break…..and bad, because the darn hamster that runs around in my head never seems too. 
This brings me back to the “B” word I’ve been attempting to combat with my Monk(e) Mob……BUSY!  ….and if school, life, etc wasn’t enough to keep a girl busy, being a full-time Mob Boss will.
I am however, taking a short break this week to compile a list (in alphabetical order) of some of the many things I am thankful for. 
More on this Thursday.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Timing is Everything

It's that time of year again.  The time when turkeys start hanging out in bad neighborhoods hoping to witness some heinous crime and then trade their testimony for entry into the witness protection program.  When the air is filled with those same ten seasonal songs that have been played every year since time immemorial.  And when every musical artist with a flagging career releases an album featuring their renditions of those ten songs.   The time of year when retailers begin force feeding us holiday cheer and cheerfully remind us that it is better to give than to receive; in hopes that we will give them our cash.  When the first glimmers of panic begin to surface through our facade of calm; as we begin to realize that time is running out and we still haven't found the perfect gifts.  But despite the time of year most of us manage to keep calm and carry on as though everything was business as usual.  And then there are these people.

Now I get it; a great deal is hard to pass up.  And there are some great Black Friday deals at Best Buy this year.  But nine days in advance? Really?  I don't care how big a tv they're selling for $9.99 no way would you catch me out there that far in advance (ok maybe if the tv was 90" plus).  I have better things to do with my time.  Like life. 

And then there are these folks.

This house has been lit like this for almost a week now.  And while the tradition of covering our homes in enough lights to signal alien cultures and set the efforts of Al Gore back by decades is something I embrace, both because I am a sci-fi geek and because I find Al Gore an inconvenient individual, and which I enjoy as much as any other American; I do feel it best to wait until the turkey has been consumed before hailing the mothership.  Here in the south jumping the gun on the decorations is usually evidence of a "you might be a redneck if..." joke just waiting to happen. It bears noting (since I don't like to be an ass; no really) that this seemingly premature display of phosphorescent home bling may have a perfectly legitimate purpose.  Given that this is a military town it is not uncommon for the families of Marines who will be deploying before Christmas to celebrate, complete with decorations and galactic lighthouse, early rather than miss sharing in the festivities.  If that be the case then it is only right that they receive a bye on the otherwise inappropriate timing.

Friday, November 18, 2011

You stay classy November

This month brought to you in large part by RED BULL.  Crew Team Season has officially given way to Term Paper Season.....which essentially means I no longer GET UP at 0430, but rather STAY UP until 0430.  .....but at any rate, copious quantities of caffeine are involved.

In other and incredibly less mundane news, the latest issue of UNCW's Atlantis Magazine was released last night.  .....which not only features the Lego guys from above, but also a Monk(e) photo!  Although impossible to tell from the web version, the Monk(e) is the centerfold. 

 : )  
I *heart* Monk(e)!


No Internet at the house. Blogger app ate my post. My very long post. Lousy cell coverage makes posting online with the phone problematic at best. Going to try to rewrite the post tomorrow. Oh well... At least the weather is starting to reflect the season. Technology may out to get me today but at least nature is cooperating.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Coming soon

Had a great idea for a post. This isn't it. Needed a picture of something seen earlier to make it work. Wasn't able to get the picture. Therefore post wouldn't work. Didn't have a plan B Trying for the photo again tomorrow. Will also plot other options in appropriately alphabetical order. Just in case.

Friday, November 11, 2011

LOVE: Found!

Some spend a life-time looking for LOVE.

I find it daily!

.....with my cameras.
: )

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

People Be Crazy...

Which often results in all manner of painfully stupid and stupidly painful moments. But on occasion the insanity results in such truly epic moments as this...

That's not photoshop. That is surfer Garrett McNamara riding the largest wave ever surfed. I personally have no idea what makes a person wake up in the morning and decide to attempt to ride a 7ft long piece of fiberglass and foam across the face of a 90ft wave but it is awesome.

Also awesome, but on a more fittingly mundane level, is the opening of a new 2nd & Charles used bookstore here in Jacksonville. I find few things as exciting as books and having a massive new source of bargain priced reading material is akin to discovering an untapped oil field in your backyard. Okay maybe it isn't that great but a new bookshelf is much less intrusive than an oil pipeline.

Speaking of bookshelves at my sisters request I'm looking at building a bookshelf for her new home based on some designs she found online and if all goes well I may be building some for myself as well as they are some of the most interesting and visually striking bookshelves I've ever seen. More on that when I actually have something to show.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

What the World Needs Most is more Cheerleaders

.....and I'm not talking about the kind that show up

......, but rather the people in this world that understand more than others the power and importance of meaningful, sincere encouragement.


Poetry Corner

On occasion things pop in to my head and I feel the need to write them down; largely because that popping noise starts to get old after a while. Often these things seem completely random and for the life of me I couldn't tell you what caused them to suddenly appear unannounced. Bt there they are placed upon paper often never to be seen by any other soul. But since I've begun writting this blog it seems somewhat wasteful not to utilize some of these random bits of prose. So since todays work schedule demands that I forgo a lengthier post until the end of the day I offer you this very short poem I wrote a few weeks back entitled: "The Jester".

I dance and prance before the king with song and trick
By word and wit and pray he's ever pleased
Lest I should face a harsher fate than e'er his enemies.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


…..and not just because my social life has been terrifyingly hectic……which is indeed true, especially this last weekend in large part to Halloween.  I must say, things can get a little hairy for Sock Monkeys with Goblins, Ghouls, Ghosts, Vampires, and other oddities on the loose.
……but alas, I survived!
…..even finding some of my “own kind” to hang out with.
Yet it is none of this that really makes me "cool", but rather the time of year it is.  Each year at about this time, my “cool factor” goes up about 20 points…..or should I say 20 degrees…..but regardless, I AM MUCH COOLER than I was just a few months ago.  Even Brian despite the bleakness of his social life is also much cooler than he used to be, if for no other reason, by proximity alone.
 .....but back to Halloween.....
 This is me hanging on with Bon Qui Qui
Don't know who she is? 
Check it out. 
……yes, I know it’s Wednesday, not Tuesday…..don’t hate just ‘cause I’m slackin’!
( Bon Qui Qui.....)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A Different Light Continued

Sorry for the lack of postage on Friday I keep forgetting that the post office has raised their rates. Also I actually had an invite to a social event with actual people in my peer group which happens only every other second Monday in the first week of Febtober so I try to take those opportunities when they arise; but enough about my pathetic social life. And even if my social life, or lack there of, didn't dictate taking every opportunity to spend time with friends we at the extraordinarily mundane life encourage social interaction as a general rule as we find life is best when shared. Now back to the promised topic. This is what it looked like before I got started.

If you aren't sure exactly what this project or projects is or where it's going that's okay I'm not all that sure either. What I do know is that after a little while it looked more like this.

That's a candle in that pot; more specifically it's the red candle you can see in the first photo. Or what's left of it anyway. The rest of the candle was melted down and is now inside of an old lightbulb. Which can be seen cooling in the second picture. I'll have a better shot of that once it's cooled and I can get it cleaned up. I also threw these together.

Yes that is a giant origami flower perched atop a pile of survival bracelets. No I don't find that strange. Preparing for the end of the world is no reason not to relax by folding paper into aesthetically pleasing shapes. I'm actually thinking about how to go about combining origami with my hollowed out light bulbs. We'll see what I come up with.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Oh, you meant get with my rowing "pair"....not pears?......AWKWARD!!

As Brian pointed out last night, seeing things in a "different light" is the bottom line to what we do around here....and I'm intrigued to see what type of "light" we will be seeing things in later this week, but whilst we're on the subject of light, we're getting to the part in the semester where my photography class will be discussing light.....or more specifically lighting.....which has much to do with photography.  Light is one of those things we kind of take for granted, like parking lots.  I mean seriously, parking lots are totally underrated until you get to someplace like New York City.....and then they're invaluable, kind of like lights.  I take for granted that the sun will rise and when I flip a switch, light bulbs will work and if either of those fail, I can always download "flashlight app" or "Zippo app" (seriously, there is one) for my iPhone or better yet, I could just ask Siri to do that for me.....but what Siri isn't particularly good at is setting up lighting for Still-Life Photography, which is the type of lighting I've been working.  Below are the results of my lighting experiments.....and a mess of my crewing cohorts that I have been spending many a morning with on the river. 

.....and these are the cats I've been spending all those early mornings with.

A Different Light

A big part of enjoying the mundane is seeing what things could be rather than what they are. In keeping with that theme I've got a new project in the works. The first examples of said project should be ready by Friday. I say should in recognition of my tendancy to underestimate the amount of time these things will require, or the time I'm going to spend regardless of requirement, but I'm hopeful this timeline will pan out. The most time consuming portion is completed and assuming the components I need to buy are in stock the final assembly should go quickly. Other than the new project nothing particularly blog worthy today. Unless you have some interest in hearing about my spending the day filling out job applications and submitting resumes... Yeah I didn't think so. So given today's lack of interesting content, for which I am truly sorry, I may throw some pictures up tomorrow if the first build is finished by then. Now I'm off to bed. It's been a long day and tomorrow is looking to be just as long. Unless of course someone decides tomorrow won't have the same 24 hours we had today.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

"Practice Kindness" - Words of Wisdom from Sidewalk Socrates

I have been both amused and bemused by the words of wisdom that crop up intermittently on sidewalks around the campus of my university.  ....which is to say, it has both pleasantly held my attention and bewildered me.  Although the finger has been pointed to me, I can assure you I am not the chalk ninja.....but it has crossed my mind to find a piece and personally thank this person.

Now for a little news on the Monk(e) front.  Whilst photos of the previously sent Monk(e)s are still rolling in, I am pleased to announce the release of another 41 "Flying Monk(e)s."  They flew as of yesterday and should be making their way to their destinations today and throughout this week.

.....and whilst this is "exciting" news, I've been a bit bewildered by the scarcity of orange tissue paper, and particularly the slightly yellowy-orange color that I have become accustomed to using.  I have instead settled for "safety orange" tissue paper and this fuzzy pair of purple socks.

....and now I must sign off as I need sleep before I head back out to the "merry little stream" at )$%# o'clock.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Local Cooling

While most people are concerning themselves with the global warming crisis I'm much more interested in the cooling trend we're currently experiencing. I know this happens every year and it's hardly a crisis but as the people ostensibly most concerned with global warming are still riding around in their chauffeured cars and private jets I find it hard to get too worked up over the issue so I'm choosing to focus on weather phenomenon closer to home. And phenomenon which I find much more pleasant. The current forecast says I shouldn't see temperatures above 80 degrees farenhiet for the next week. I'm hoping that'll hold true for the rest of the year. I'm already dusting off the winter jackets and preparing for one of my favorite days of the year. No not Christmas, though I have been known to enjoy that too, but the first day without Mosquitos; yes I know Mosquitos doesn't need to be capitalized but spell check disagrees and sometimes it's easier to just play along. It's also easier to play outside when all the blood sucking parasites have called it quits for the season. I also think it worth noting that cigars, coffee, hot chocolate and hot tea are greatly improved by temperatures below 50 degrees. So we'll start prepping those supplies as well. Now if you'll excuse me I need to go ready the snowshoes and draw up some blueprints for an igloo.

Thursday, October 20, 2011


I once wanted to be someone important. 
 I became that person.....but wasn't satisfied.

I once wanted to do something important. 
I did something.....but wasn't satisfied.

Today I want to be right where I am with feet firmly planted on the ground, believing that only through finding what makes each moment fulfilling is what makes life as a whole fulfilling.

My greatest joys have never come through joyous things in life, but by coming through difficult things victoriously.

In a world where hatred, betrayal, victimization, lying, and cowardice are "Normal", I want to wear polka dotted shoes with argyle socks. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Feel The Power... Or Not.

My compatriot's recent experience with the dark is something I've been able to relate with quite well for the past two nights. Now I know what you're thinking; and yes toast is delicious but that really isn't relevant. I am of course aware that night has a particular and persistent relationship with the dark. But this is the 21st century and light is something that bends to our will; a force we command as if we were a medieval wizard. Unless the power goes out. Then our attempts to command the elements make us look more the court jester than a wizard. The past two nights we've experienced a series of power outages which left us completely in the dark despite our normal command of the photon. Ordinarily this would be only a minor inconvenience as I am in possession of several flashlights; however it is suprisingly difficult to locate said lights at 3am in a pitch black room. If only I'd had a light.

Sitting in the Dark and Other Bright Ideas.....

…..although not entirely my first choice, I have indeed spent most of the day sitting in the dark.
…..literally……not figuratively.
My day started as usual at 0430…..aka: )$#)…..but I hit snooze and pushed it out to )$#*…..which isn’t *much* better, but did make me feel a *little* better.  Yet unlike usual, I was coxswaining instead of rowing.  I like rowing… doesn’t require talking (something I frown upon in the morning)…..coxswaining on the other hand…..well, you get the picture.  I’ve never coxswained before, so they gave me the “crash” course (figuratively) and we launched off into the darkness. 
The larger majority of the rest of the day I spent developing photographs in the dark room for my critique tomorrow…..which is why this post is soooooo late.

ß This is a photo of the dark room.  .....okay, maybe not....but you get the point.....right?

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Things That Are NOT Funny

While there are many things in life that I find funny, for instance most everything, but there are some things which I do not find funny.

Examples include:
Cats which like me even though I don't like them
People who drive 2 miles an hour under the speed limit
Napoleon Dynamite; though I find quoting it hilarious. Not sure how that works but there it is.

But chief among these things this week is the phrase "that's funny". Specifically when uttered by a banker as a response to having examined my account and been unable to determine why my paycheck wasn't posting properly and why I was unable to pay bills using my account. I'm fairly certain my banker doesn't really understand how humor works. I wonder if this failure to grasp humor is common to bankers. Maybe the whole financial crisis in Washington is actually an attempt at humor by government accountants and bankers. Fortunately the issue seems to have been resolved and banking balance has been restored it the universe. Well to my account any way. America is still basically a scrawny nerd with a fat kid on the other end of the see-saw.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Comfort Food

Today has been something of an off day. You know the type I mean. Not a bad day just a day where life seems a little out of whack. As if things were not quite the way they ought to be but close. Some might tell you there is no remedy for such a day. That the only course is to ride it out and wait for tomorrow. But I find that the best course is to grab some comfort food and relax with a book or a good movie. For me comfort food means grilled cheese and ramen noodle soup.

Growing up this combo was Mom's prescription for kids who didn't feeling well but weren't really sick and for warming up after a day playing out in the cold. Or at least that's how I remember it and that works for me. and hopefully tomorrow will work for me too. I just hope it doesn't ask for a raise.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

If it's FREE, then it's for ME! least usually.  Poison Ivy is generally free too, but I'll give it a miss.  Thankfully today it just meant an ice cream cone if from of the library!  Yummy!....and yes, please!

....found this quote over the weekend....these things are also free.....may we all give them freely as well as take them.....

"Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around."


 Anyone else find this ironic?
......kind of "southern" humor.....but all too funny to me.
*Sorry for the late post....internet access is temporarily intermittent.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Falling Flat

As promised today we, and by we I mean I, will unveil the first in what will be at least a two part synopsis of our investigation into all things flat and otherwise. Originally my intent was to provide a single synopsis of the results and offer my conclusions on whether the tested items were best in their natural state or flattened/unflattened. But there are so many objects to test and several of the items I wanted to unflatten were not readily available and a busy work week coupled with a trip out of town has prevented me from heading out to locate said items. So today we offer a selection of flattened items with the rest of the results soon to come.

First up a hat. And not just any hat. A hat most would consider a fedora but which is in actuality a trilby.

Now I'm not one to underestimate what kind of stupid things people will wear in the name of fashion, for instance all of Lady Gaga's outfits, but I can honestly say that I don't think this look really has any traction. At very least I won't be pioneering the look. As far as I'm concerned this hat simply loses something when flat.

Next up a can of soda. While soda cans, or cans of pop depending on which part of the country you hail from, are often flattened after being emptied, to save room in the trash or prove that your forehead is good for more than just protecting the frontal lobe, for the purpose of our experiment it was important not to have an empty can. The results were predictably messy.

The most serious complaint I have with the flattened can is a grievous lack of volume. While the slimmer profile might make for easier storage I can't imagine any reason to have such a diminutive source of caffeine.

And finally, for today at least an orange. Once again I think God knew exactly what he was doing when he shaped the orange. The flattened orange...

Was significantly easier to peel as a result of the ruptured peel. There was nothing wrong with the taste and the consistency was still pretty close to original. But eating the pulpy mess was somehow less satisfying than downing the delightful slices I'm to which I'm accustomed.

Based on the first batch of tests it would appear that flattening an object which is naturally otherwise is not always and maybe never for the best. But there is still more experiment to come and perhaps more to be flattened. So stay tuned as we go to war with the status quo to determine the truth. And the truth will set you free. Unless the truth is that you did run over that hobo with your suv. Then the truth will probably get you 25 to life.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

I spy with my little eye.....

.....something that is RED!

These Monk(e) photos arrived with a note that stated:
"YEAH......he did them in his own order and survived."


*Big Thank You to Jumpin' Johnny for the photos. : )

In other entirely unrelated and extremely mundane news, I have found myself in the very middle of mid-term test week.  Ugh!  This is of course my 2nd least favorite week of any semester and shows up without fail approximately halfway through.

.....but alas....there are quite a few things I DO like about this season.  I'm excited to enjoy a hot bowl of soup, listen to the marching band practicing down the street, break out my sweaters, and cozy up in bed with a fuzzy pair of socks.  Still on my "to-do" list are tailgate and made a pot of homemade chili.....ummm......fall is indeed here.
Additionally (kind of like a P.S.S.) I'm becoming ever intrigued as to what B is trying to flatten or unflatten as the case way be.