Thursday, May 31, 2007

Tonight . . . at rest

I actually didn't bring any work home tonight, so I am continuing to watch season one episodes of LOST and doing a bit of blogging. I am inexpressibly happy not to be sitting at the kitchen table and working on proof pages right now.

But, what do I blog about? I've been so rusty lately that I don't really know what to do. I have some stuff from Sarah that is equally funny and embarrassing, but I've been letting her carry me on the blog a bit too much lately. So, I'll try to carry on a bit with The Clothing Project entries--but with a slight twist.

First up tonight are my sandals.

(Though this is not true of all my clothes, I promise, these shoes are also related to my mom.) She first had a pair of these Keen sandals a few years ago and loved them so much that I decided the next time I needed to buy sandals, I would get me a pair. I have trouble buying shoes, since my left foot is slightly smaller than my right and so it is hard to find shoes that fit both feet properly sometimes. But these sandals seem to work well. I like that they hug my feet well and are simply pulled on and off with a bungee drawstring. (Often I don't even tighten the bungee--except for when I want to get all fancy and wear them to a restaurant or something. If I want to get super fancy, I can even put on some socks to go with it, but that's probably only necessary when they are going with a tuxedo or something.) It's also good that these shoes are washable, because I need to clean them fairly frequently.

I bought these at a Dick's Sporting Goods in Easton. I don't think they are available for purchase over the Internet, which I find perplexing. But at least I was able to get them somewhere.

Some of you might remember that purchasing a pair of these sandals was one of my original items on the 101 in 1001 days. But please don't ask me how that project is going, because I don't know right now, not having checked my progress lately--or more accurately, verified my lack of progress.

My second item of clothing tonight is the important one--my green seersucker shirt:

The fact that this is seersucker is somewhat important, since I have always liked the fabric, thought it wrinkles something awful. Normally, I don't care that much, but every once and a while, I find that I have to iron the button placket and the sleeves, because they get all bunched up and it just looks sloppy.

But, this shirt is most important because I was wearing it the first day I started working at my job. (If you doubt it, ask me to show you my ID badge and you'll see a photo almost as bad as the one above.) I can't tell you anything especially remarkable about my first day at work. I only have vague impressions of it now. I started on June 15, 2000. I was given a cube in the same row with Flipper, GY, and Dr. Actually and until very recently, we've all been sitting with each other ever since. But, the best reason to bring up this shirt and my first day at work is because tomorrow is Lulu's LAST day at work.

I can't remember a great deal about her first day at work either, and there have been far too many things that have happened since that day to recount properly here. I can only say that I am sad to see another one of my close friends leave the building--even if it is to better, happier pursuits. All of the members of the 4Square lunch table have changed since we all met years ago and some of us have moved on to other things, but I count myself blessed for the time I've shared with each of them--from Old Navy and Jack way back in the day to Jack and Lulu and Flipper and Dr. Actually and Shirtless, to the departure of Old Navy and Jack, then the addition of Spec and Raisinette, then the subtraction of Spec, and now with the addition of DG and BH and MS.

People have come and gone, will continue to come and go, and I've had the richer life and experience because of it. So, thanks to everyone for being who you are. And much good luck to you Lulu as you head out to "Hot Waffles." Keep blogging!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Sarah's Memorial Day memories

(Another in a continuing series of posts written by my oldest daughter--which simply indicates that I haven't found the time and energy to write my own posts anymore.)

"It was Memorial day yesterday. My dad my sister and me went to the zoo. We had lunch there too. We had two hot dogs and chips. I saw gorilas and two monkeys. Then when we were done we went home and played outside. My dad was watering the grass. He sprad us with the hose too! I had a lot of fun."

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Sarah sums up First Grade

This year was fun! I learned how to count money. I learned how we can help keep the world clean. It's Fun. I played a lot of fun games like Sprkole. Me and my friends had a lot of fun. The time when we all got in grops and did some cool icsperaments like playing with some play-dow. And we saw how long an ice cube can stay without melting. But it was sort of boring. But every thing else was geat! I had a lot of fun in 1st grade and I allso want have fun in seconed grad to!

Monday, May 14, 2007

It's the clothes that make the man . . .

Welcome to an extremely random and unpredictable series of posts in which I (for no real reason whatsoever) decide to display photos of my clothes and tell you any possible story that might come up regarding those clothes.

So, let's get started, shall we?

Why don't we begin with these two items--a fir green wool baseball-style cap and a leather braided belt.

These two items are, to my knowledge and memory, the two oldest items of clothing that I currently own. I know for certain that the hat was purchased from the JCrew catalog in 1989 and the belt was bought at about the same time. The belt, in fact, once belonged to my mother and I had a very similar one that was a slightly different color (both belts were also from JCrew). But, somewhere along the line, probably during a visit home during a college weekend, I switched belts with Mom. Why, exactly, we did so is probably lost in the sands of time (unless Mom remembers or corrects me).

I wore lots of JCrew clothes back in high school, but I soon phased out of that as I transitioned into college. This hat and this belt are about the only remaining vestiges of that wardrobe era.

Here is a better view of the cap and belt. This hat, it just so happens, is identical to the style of hat (though not the color) that Michael Stipe wore in the R.E.M. video for "Shiny Happy People." That is NOT the reason that I bought the hat, though you are excused for thinking that thought--especially during that latter high school phase of my identity.

I wore hats quite a lot in high school and into college. It was sort of my "thing" for a while, a sartorial crutch that allowed me to self define who I was in relation to everyone around me. I'm sure I do similar things now, but not quite as overtly related to clothing. More likely, I'm the "TV guy" or the "blogging guy" or the "Harry Potter" guy.

But, I have always like this hat and the belt has always held up my pants with sufficient tension and necessary style. But, when I have worn the hat throughout the years (around EIGHTEEN at this count), I have usually worn it backwards, like so: . If I have waited a long while between haircuts, my thick hair makes it harder to fit snugly on my head. During those times, I often wear it backwards and turn the bill up in the back. That allows it to tighten a bit and grab hold of the head a bit more.

Well, that's it for now. Who knows what item of clothing I'll choose next?

Thursday, May 10, 2007

My review of Spiderman 3

"I'm sorry."

These are words that should come out of Peter Parker's mouth frequently during his life as it is depicted in Spider-Man 3.

Also, these are words that are coming out of my mouth far too frequently these days.

Peter begins this movie full of happiness and satisfaction. He has reached (so he thinks) a balance in his life that is markedly different than what we saw during Spider-Man 2, where he struggled to maintain his superhero life, his education, his relationship with Mary Jane.

Seemingly all of that is cleared up in this movie installment. He's got the girl, the city he protects loves him, his grades are up. Everything is fine.

But, the measure of a person is to see them when they are down, to see how they handle adversity and setbacks.

The setbacks do come and Peter responds to them badly. He has let the city's love of Spider-Man go to his head and can't see that Mary Jane is struggling with her own problems. He won't let her talk to him about her fears. She can't compete with the demands of Spider-Man and she can't outlove an entire city, so she (unwisely) shuts down. But, even when she tries to open up to Peter, he isn't really listening.

Then, Peter is beset on all sides with villains aplenty, one of which turns out the be the real crook that caused the death of his Uncle Ben back in movie 1. Peter's renewed guilt and rage over his uncle's death, combines with his conceited state and he becomes a magnet for an alien creature that fuels the aggression and anxiety that is at the heart of a lot of overlooked, overanxious nerdy people. Peter lets this alien force push him down dark paths and helps him justify choices that are hurtful to himself and others. Peter must struggle to find out who he really wants to be. Once again, with great power comes great responsibility.


I really enjoyed the movie. I didn't LOVE it unconditionally like I did Spider-Man 2, but I found it highly entertaining, funny when it was trying to be. I also recognized when it resembled a series of video game stunts and felt that some other moments could have been cut or the pacing improved in the slow sections to make it a tighter film that didn't seem to be running 100 miles-an-hour at one point and 25 miles-per-hour at another. This sort of felt like two movies pushed into one-and-a-half movies. But, I enjoyed it all the same.


"I'm sorry," says Peter and as I said, it seems that I'm doing that all the time too.

I say it to my neighbors at work for when I am not providing a good atmosphere for their work. I say it to my managers and coworkers when I am not meeting deadlines. I say it to Lynda when I am grumpy and overstressed and can't leave my work mess at work. I say it to myself when I can't allow myself to be human, can't allow myself to make mistakes and struggle through them, coming out the other side imperfectly but out. I can't allow myself to recognize that the mess I'm in isn't ENTIRELY of my own making and I can't recognize the fact that even if I had done EVERYTHING better than I did and am currently doing, it might still be a big mess.

I am NOT doing any work tonight, and for that I guess I'll say again, "I'm sorry."

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Why Won't You Rest?!

Yeah, I decided to take a night off tonight.

I brought home a small bit of work, but I decided to ignore it and turn my brain off for
a while. Instead, I tried to catch up on some laundry, which was piling up.

Things at work are both demoralizing and ordinary and exhausting at the same time.

It's demoralizing because I am trying to not take the state of thingspersonally--i.e., the status and progress of my project reflects my own personal worth or indicates my fitness as a working individual or some such crap as all that.

It's ordinary because it's been like this for months . . . but I keep telling myself that it is slowly coming to an end.

It's exhausting because it's been going on for months and I'm just tired of it all. But, as other people's projects are coming to completion, I'm getting help. And no one has fired me yet.

In other news, I started my Nielsen TV diary today and will try my best to accurately reflect the TV watching in the house from today to next week. It's a bit more of a challenge than I thought it would be, keeping up with what the kids are watching and remembering when TVs are turned on and turned off. But, it'll be easier today than on Saturday, when I'm not always around when the TV is on.

Spiderman 3 will premiere in about 45 minutes here around where I live. I ought to sneak out of the house and go see it, if I didn't have to be coherent at work tomorrow. But, we are planning to go see it soon with friends, so it's all good.

In other, other news, Sarah and I have really enjoyed reading Harry Potter books lately. We're almost done with Book 2 now and she's even begun liking listening to the audio books in the car from time to time. I took her to her dance class Monday afternoon and when she came out of the studio, she was carrying a trophy about as large as my forearm. (Seriously, this trophy was as large as all of the trophies I've ever gotten in my life
added together.)

Isn't that thing crazy big? And she won it for being the best in her class at doing the splits. The young are so flexible. But, I'm glad that she won since she's been tired of dance lately and resisting going to class.
But we're almost done with the classes we purchased, so we are making sure that she goes, as we don't want anyone to be a quitter. But, she has been talking more and more about soccer--though I don't know when
we'll be able to get her in on that (maybe not until the fall).

I'm going to stop now and go to bed, since this blog isn't really coherent.

Until next time . . .

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Still here

Yeah, it's true. I'm still here, still working, still tired, still sick of the grind of this project.

I should be pretty excited right now, sinceSpiderman
is coming out this weekend. I should be looking forward
to a great many things like tennis and many, many other things . . .
but I'm just exhausted, irritable.

Back to work.