Friday, September 29, 2006

The Reticence of the Sue

Sorry things have been so quiet around here of late. I got (ahem) scolded at work last week for my excessive usage of the internet. Oops. ;) No more blogging during the day for me! Unfortunately, by the time I get home in the evening, I'm usually pretty wiped out and barely get around to reading what all the rest of you are writing, let alone posting anything of my own. Totally lame, but that's the way it goes.

I will say that I am loving not having to drive to San Diego anymore. L-O-V-ing it. I can get so much done after work during the week, and sleeping in my own bed every night is downright marvelous. Never mind the added benefit of getting to see my beloved every day. Sappy, it's true, but I really am fond of the guy. ;)

Next week the thesis work begins in earnest, and I'll be going to the gym every afternoon, so I may be reduced to weekly updates here, if that. I'm sure you'll survive without my daily witty commentary recountings of trivial shit. For the time being, I'm too fond of hearing myself talk seeing myself type to quit altogether, so maybe I'll be all mimi smartypants style and it'll be a pleasant surprise every time I update ye olde blogge. Or something. ;)

So one last bit of trivial crap, and I'll send you on your way. Tonight, Tom & I are going to a high school football game because, well, neither of us has been to one in a long-ass time, and we think it might be fun. Pasadena High School faces off against Arcadia tonight. I don't know what their mascots are or how good either team is, but it should be entertaining. Tomorrow I'm getting a haircut. I don't know how short I'll go with it, but almost anything could happen. I say almost because I'm not likely to get a crew cut or dye it blonde, but I am leaving my options open with regards to length, within reason. I know they're going to charge me an arm and a leg for the cut, too, so I am expecting quality! I will let you know how it turns out, since I know you will hardly be able to stand the suspense.

Signing off. Have a lovely weekend!

I Wanna Be Like You-u-u...

Congratulations to my parents, who are celebrating their 33rd wedding anniversary today! Way to go. :)

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

It's all about context...

September 2004: "Holy crap! Look at how high the price of gas is!"
September 2006: "Holy crap! Look at how low the price of gas is!"

(This photo was taken in September of 2004. I found it the other day while going through my old laptop's hard drive. I wasn't sure whether to laugh or cry.)

Saturday, September 23, 2006


Took my final this morning, and I thought it went quite well. No more classes for me! Yay! :)

Tomorrow we're going wine tasting at a wine shop here in Pasadena. That should be nice. Happy autumn, everyone!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Seasons Change

I was all set to write a "Yay! Happy first day of autumn!" post today, but I thought it would be a good idea to double-check that it actually is the atumnal equinox today before posting erroneous information. It's a good thing I checked, since it is technically still summer until Saturday. For some reason, I had it in my head that the solstices and equinoxes were almost always on the 21st of the month (March, June, September, December), but that is not the case.

  • The vernal equinox falls on March 21st every 4 years and on March 20th the rest of the time.
  • The summer solstice is always on June 21st. (Well, it has been for the last quarter century. Back in the 60s it fell on the 22nd.)
  • In 1996, the atumnal equinox shifted from being on September 22nd every fourth year and September 23rd the rest of the time to switching off every two years. This year it falls on the 23rd.
  • The winter solstice alternates between December 21st and 22nd every two years.

The linked pages have little tables and diagrams showing the changes each year. I wouldn't want to be the one sitting around and figuring all that stuff out (so thanks, astronomers!) but it's kind of neat to look at.

All right, enough procrastination via blog. Back to work on my Powerpoint presentation. More from me in a couple of days.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Haiku-Tu: Electronic Addiction Edition

Might as well face it -
You're addicted to e-mail.
Is there hope? Perhaps.

Interesting post on Mind Hacks today. I understand the email withdrawls all too well.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Bulletpost Monday

  • Friday night was awesome! It was a field of 38, none of whom jumped the initial round clear. The jump-off was between the 7 riders who had 4 faults each (meaning they had knocked down one jump and finished within the time allowed). There were only two clear rounds in the jump-off, and one of them had one time fault, so it was a close competition. I really enjoyed myself, though I'd forgotten how uncomfortable metal bleachers are. ;)
  • I love that the weather's changing, but I think I'm getting a cold. I've been feeling like crap for the first few hours of the day, particularly when I have to get up early. Yippee.
  • This is my last week of classes for my master's degree! I have a final on Saturday, and then I've just got to write my thesis by the end of the year. Suh-weet. No more San Diego commute for me!
  • Cough cough cough...
  • Tom did the laundry and a mountainload of dishes yesterday. I am a lucky girl. :)

Friday, September 15, 2006

Friday Flickr Blogging: Grand Prix Show Jumping

Today after work, I am going to pick up Tom and we will brave the Friday afternoon traffic in order to make our way down to Orange County for a Grand Prix show jumping competition.

I have mentioned it before, and my family/friends know it all too well, but I used to ride horses. I was way into it, and I was actually quite good at it. I may not be able to kick a ball or run around a track faster than anyone, but damn if I can't do some impressive things on the back of a horse. One of my youthful aspirations was to make it to the Olympics as a stadium jumper. (That was after I grew too tall to be a jockey.)

Stadium/show jumping is a competition in which a horse and rider combination must successfully maneuver over a course of fences of various types. At the Grand Prix level, there are between 10 and 16 jumps ranging in height from 5' to 5'6". That's right...some of the fences are taller than I am.* I love watching this event on TV, and in person it's even more impressive. Needless to say, I am way stoked about going to tonight's competition! :)

Pictured above is Margie Goldstein-Engle, one of my childhood idols. She is 5'1" tall (so pretty much everything she's jumping is over her head) and one of the best riders the sport has ever seen. Props to you, Margie!

*There's another type of competition called Puissance, which is basically a high-jump contest. There's a short course, the final jump of which keeps getting raised every time it is cleared. It usually ends up over 7 feet high. Click on this link to see the current record holders (from 1949!) clearing 8+ feet. Ho-lee crap.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Good Afternoon

After an extraordinarily lazy and unproductive day (I did some homework, but not much else), I wandered down to the Farmers' Market and got another of those tasty savory crepes for an early dinner. I took it to the beach, where I sat a while and took some pictures.

Bonus Haiku for You!

I am annoyed that
these days, at this latitude,
it's dark before eight.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Haiku-Tu: Homage to My Athletic Husband

He's a Racquetman,
Racquetman, hit that little
blue ball at the wall.

Tom & I have been playing racquetball once or twice a week. As should be made obvious by my inability to stay on my own two feet while running, I could never be mistaken for an athlete. However, Tom has been kind and patient, and I believe I have almost caught up to him...when he's playing left-handed and I get an extra bounce. Still, improvement is improvement, so I'll take it. I did smack him pretty hard in the ear with the ball last night though. Oops. :(

Monday, September 11, 2006

Wait. It's not what it sounds like.

Statement made at work this morning that really doesn't mean what you might think it means:

"We're out of acid. The strippers are starting to panic."

Reader Participation Monday

Finish the following sentence:

Water chestnuts...

a. are crunchy and delicious!
b. are essential for stir fry, but not much use for anything else.
c. set my teeth on edge and should never be eaten by anyone, at any time, for any reason.
d. [insert your answer here]

All right, peoples. Now participate.

(And if you're itching for something to read about the anniversary of a pretty crappy day for a lot of people, go here, because she's a lot more eloquent than I am.)

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Also, a word of thanks

To whatever weather god(dess) decided we were worthy of a break from the heat. The past two mornings have been downright lovely, and it hasn't gotten too bad in the afternoons. Hurrah!


I woke up this morning from a dream in which I was suddenly and enormously pregnant. Tom was out of town, and I was trying to make my way to the hospital because I thought I was going into labor. I had to run through a carnival in order to get to the hospital and nearly got taken out by one of those Scrambler rides. It was a weird dream.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Friday Flickr Blogging: Safety

This will round out the three-day posting arc highlighting The Clumsiness of the Sue. Remember, kids - safety first!

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Was I what?

At the hospital yesterday, after the admitting nurse took my blood pressure, pulse and temperature (simultaneously!), she started in on the "head injury questions." Did I lose consciousness? (No.) Was I having any vision problems? (No.) Had I been...and then there was a look on her face like she realized mid-sentence how stupid the question was but couldn't stop herself from finishing it...wearing a helmet? Yeah, I'm the one they call Helmet Girl, jogging around the block with my bright pink helmet on. Children point and laugh at me, mothers hold their infants a little closer as I pass, men look at my wedding band and wonder who I think I'm fooling.

No, admitting nurse, I was not wearing a helmet. That's not, however, to say that there isn't a distinct possibility that I should have been wearing one.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

American Klutz

Last Wednesday I started running again, since I've got 2 days each week in San Diego with little to do (homework/reading/studying for my current class is almost nonexistent). I don't really like running, but I've got to do something to stay active, and it's remarkably effective for improving the cardiovascular fitness. This morning, after lazing around and surfing the internets for a goodly while, I dragged myself out to get some exercise. I've been jogging a little 1.3-mile loop near my friend's house, just to get back in the swing of things; when I rejoin the Caltech gym next month, I'm going to start swimming, too.

Anyway, I was a bit more than halfway through my route, when I suddenly found myself flat on my belly with blood gushing out of my chin. Buh?! I had been passing a church that was undergoing some construction and was surrounded by a chain link fence. This fence had little "feet" that stuck a little ways out onto the sidewalk, and I was paying too much attention to my iPod and too little attention to where I was going to avoid tripping over one of them.

Below is a graphical representation of the event, inspired partly by American Splendor, which we watched this weekend, and partly by MysteryGirl!.

I'm okay. I broke my fall with my knees and then my chin, with my hands coming up as something of an afterthought. Heh. (No, Mom, I didn't rebreak my jaw.) The bright side? Looks like I won't be running tomorrow! (And I got a blog post out of it. Hehe.)

Update: I ended up going to the hospital after all because I feared I might have fractured my right patella in the fall. (As in, "when I fell" and not "in the autumn.") They took x-rays (no fracture...phew!) and I asked someone to take a look at my chin while I was there. The doc deemed it worthy of 4 stitches, so he sewed me up and sent me on my way. Astoundingly, I was in and out of there in 90 minutes (at a Kaiser hospital!), so that was good. But now I have lovely black threads in my chin. Chah-ming.

Stuff it!

For dinner on Saturday, we made red bell peppers stuffed with layers of lamb, feta, Greek yoghurt and herbs. These were served with eggplant slices that were topped with diced bell peppers (orange and yellow), onion, and a combination of Parmesan and Jarlsburg cheeses. It was gooooooood.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

The Weekend, in Haiku

Saturday I worked
Then made dinner with the boys
Tasty stuffed peppers

Sunday, got up and
went over to M's for some
swimming and kabobs

Monday, Irwin croaked
You poor, crazy croc hunter
Rest in peace, matey

Also Monday, chores
Laundry, dishes, vacuuming
And a barbeque

Seems I ate a lot
at other peoples' houses
No cooking for me! ;)

Friday, September 01, 2006

Friday Flickr Blogging

Thought I'd try a new thing (we'll see how long I keep it up). Each Friday I will choose a word or phrase apropos of the day or week, and I will do a random Flickr photo search. Best photo among the search results gets posted. This week's word (since it is currently 102 degrees out): heat.