Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Inferiority Complex?

Last night I dreamed that my boss told me she didn't like the recipe I use for sugar cookies, even though she has never had any of my sugar cookies, nor have we ever even talked about sugar cookies. I also dreamed that Pierce Gleeson said somewhere that he did not like this blog -- not just the web design, which is admittedly substandard, but the content -- even though I'm quite sure he has never read it. Then I dreamed a complete stranger scoffed at my photography, which wasn't fair because in my dream I felt like I was trying to move through marshmallow, and it was really hard to focus on the waterfall while trying not to fall off the edge of the cliff that I got to through a secret room in the library. Meaningless criticisms I see ahead for tonight:

1. Carl Kasell belittles the way I wash dishes, in spite of not knowing I exist.
2. Heslington berates my critical thinking skills, regardless of being a sheep-shaped doorstop.
3. The wind tells me I am wearing ugly shoes, even though it is dressed in a red plaid suit and is in no position to judge.

Addendum: As a matter of fact, after writing this, I dreamed that I was forced to repeat my senior year of high school, and was scolded by an authority figure for having forgotten the combination to my locker. Even though I had not used it in eight years. I tried to explain that I wouldn't be in this pickle if they hadn't taken away the yearbook room, but no one listens to logic in dreams.

I think it's worth mentioning that the rest of my class had to repeat, too, and that Dan remembered his locker combination. "Oh yeah, of course I know it. Use it all the time. Sheesh, Simon."

Matt, however, was having some issues being re-enrolled because his mom couldn't find a copy of his birth certificate. He stopped at a showcase in the hallway, bought a lizard, and said, "Well this should take care of it." And we all agreed that indeed a lizard was a perfectly acceptable replacement for Matt's birth certificate. Annoyingly, my alarm went off before I found out what the guidance office said.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Continuing Our Cyber Tour of the St. Louis Zoo

These pictures were taken from an overlook above the tiger cage. Or "exhibit" as they would probably say. They are not the best pictures ever. It was a million degrees in St. Louis at the end of August. The overlook was a vast, shadeless expanse. There were sand dunes. I could have been killed by a spiceblow. Really! As it was, I did nearly drown in a puddle of my own sweat and sustained third-degree sunburns on all areas of exposed skin. This is a distracting condition in which to try to photograph moving targets, and I'm sorry that I could not properly capture the adorableness of these tiger cubs during my near-death experience.

Monday, January 26, 2009

King(s) of the Park Bench? And the Epitome of Old Age

Been meaning to post this, too. Standing on a bench is not as cool as standing on a fake rock formation, but it sure beats the gravel. You can tell they just feel better there, 1.5 feet above sea level.

Okay, folks. This is going to be a recurring game, apparently. Who does it look like? No, you'll never guess. Here:

Granted, Joan Rivers has hair and ears. And ever since she did that commercial mocking her own plastic surgeries, I have felt a weird admiration for her, on those occasions when I think of her at all. Which are rare. I didn't even think of her as tortoise-like until I Googled "wrinkly neck." Ooh, snap. No, I didn't mean it. I actually rummaged through my brain for people with wrinkly necks and she came to mind first. It was just a coincidence that she has a tortoise-nose, too. New rule: No more posting when tired. It's clearly irresponsible.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Hippopotamic Land Mass and a Grave Instance of Language Abuse

I took this picture at the St. Louis Zoo in August. There is no particular reason I am posting it today. It's 5:13 and I find myself between things to do: why not post a picture of a hippo trying to hide behind a wooden column? Why not indeed.

In verifying the spelling of "hippopotamic" I discovered that the word "hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia" allegedly exists. I say allegedly because it seems like a pretty stupid word to me. "Hippopotamus" means "water horse" and has no place, etymologically-speaking, in a word about words. Furthermore, the Internet tells me that the Greek and Latin components of this word are used incorrectly. I conclude that though "hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia" is allegedly defined as "the fear of long words," what it really means, if actually employed, in any context, is: "My use of this word suggests that I am a show-off with a third-rate sense of irony." Beware!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

No kidding, this is the kind of relief I feel today.

"And as the Captains gazed south to the Land of Mordor, it seemed to them that, black against the pall of cloud, there rose a huge shape of a shadow, impenetrable, lightning-crowned, filling all the sky. Enormous it reared above the world, and stretched out towards them a vast threatening hand, terrible but impotent: for even as it leaned over them, a great wind took it, and it was all blown away, and passed; and then a hush fell."

Monday, January 19, 2009

Don't Tell Me It Doesn't Get Cold Here

These photos are from two separate weekends in Los Angeles... well, slightly outside Los Angeles, but still! Cold! The first is from a snowshoeing expedition along Highway 2. During the rainy season they decide it's completely pointless to plow the road so they close it for winter sports. It's bizarre to get to a melty spot and see the double yellow lines poking through the snow. Also, people bring their pickup trucks to the top of the road, fill them up with snow and DRIVE IT HOME TO PLAY WITH. I saw at least five cars doing this. You people are CRAZY.

The second is from a weekend in Joshua Tree where I am happy to say, I was not attacked by killer spiders. I did manage to scrape most of the skin off my leg during a bouldering adventure, but it seemed minor considering none of the boulders had eight legs or the ability to scurry. After bouldering, we hiked back through a wash and stumbled upon this icy area. The Co-Spelunker was intent on finding out how thick the ice was, but arrested his investigation when he realized he was going to fall into a foot of ice water in the middle of the desert.

Of course it is 87 degrees in Los Angeles proper today.

I am wearing a skirt and flip flops.

Feel free to hate me, but don't tell me it doesn't get cold!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Pockypine Flashback

Long story short: Ivan and I made this fantastic cake when she was home in June.

It was delicious, but the thing about cakes with eyes on them is that they look at you while you're carving them up, which is unsettling.

Credit for this genius idea goes to Anna Dilemna, who invented and named the Pockypine cake. You can find her blog post about the original version here. We couldn't find a football cake tin, so ours ended up being 3D.

A good argument for not waiting six months to post something is that you wouldn't forget all the great jokes you made at the time. The only thing I remember is asking Ivan whether she preferred flank or rump, but I assure you that during the course of baking this cake we said a lot of things we never thought we'd have an occasion to say. Next time maybe we'll try an alpaca-shaped cake and I will record the entire thing so as to properly report on it because you know nothing is real unless you blog about it later.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Things that freeze instantly when it is one degree outside:

1. Wet hair
2. Windshield washer fluid
3. Brain matter (this just in: skull not effective insulator)