Tuesday, June 30, 2009

So Long Considering

I graduated May 22nd, left the 23rd for Salt Lake City with my Mom, came home the following Wednesday and left Sunday for a week at the beach with Kyle's family. Salt Lake City was great as I haven't seen my cousins for a while and they had a little girl back in April. Hannah is very cute and while we were there over Memorial Day, we went up to Lava Hot Springs, ID. It was her first vacation and it was a ton of fun. Karen and Dan had been there before, but we stayed at a new place that had its own hot springs so we just had to walk downstairs rather than go up the street to the public ones. Idaho is gorgeous, as is Salt Lake City. They showed us the house they are considering buying. It's up in the mountains rather than in the city and seems lovely. We could only peek in the windows, but it would definitely give them more space as Hannah gets older and more privacy.
The beach was a lot of fun this year. We didn't really do too much, but we spent two days at the beach, one day hiking at the island preserve, and one day we went and saw Star Trek. Other than that we just relaxed a whole lot.
Since the beach, I have been rather busy with things going on most weekends and one or two days a week. I had a job interview scheduled for last Monday, but the guy had to cancel due to a meeting that came up. I don't have his contact info or anything so I can't do anything about rescheduling and I haven't heard from him or my contact. It's a little frustrating as I have been out of school for over a month and technically unemployed since December. I kept working in the lab during my last semester, but I wasn't actually getting paid for it. I've been looking for jobs, but I am constrained by location as I need something that I can commute to from the southern end and also from Kyle's house if I am still at the job by the time I get married. Hopefully something will work out. Also having to say that I will need to have off two thirds of October is not a great thing to have to tell a prospective employer. But seriously, considering I haven't had a job or anything major to do since May, I haven't been posting at all. The problem is that I just check email and read the various blogs I follow on my ipod touch and don't bother turning on my laptop. I'm definitely not typing a whole blog entry on my ipod.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Commence Real Life

I am done! I turned in my last paper Monday and have done very little since. Let real life commence. After graduation, a trip to see family in Utah, and a week at the beach of course. I think I'm allowed two weeks after twenty-two plus years of non-stop education. I just hope a job offer comes soon. Any archaeology firms in southeastern PA need a lab tech? I'm available June 8th. I'm pretty sure something will come up and I can always get something for the summer locally until the wedding.
So I have done one thing since my coursework ended. My mom and sister came down Sunday night so we could go to Mt. Vernon while I was still close. Mom has wanted to go back and Ang and I have never been. It was a gorgeous day and a lot of fun. Sadly, I got most excited seeing the super awesome sifting screens the archaeologists in the upper garden had set up. I am a dork, but they were great because the screens were on wheels on a frame with chutes for the screened dirt to go straight into a bucket or wheelbarrow. They were at standing level so no bending over forever and killing your back. Seriously cool and all archaeologists probably wish they had one. I know I do.
Anyway, I highly recommend people visit Mt. Vernon because it is just a really pretty property on a nice day. We walked all over the grounds before heading to the gristmill and distillery down the road. Definitely worth the extra time to go see those.
Besides Mt. Vernon, Mom and Ang came to get most of my furniture before there would be other people in the van when they come down for graduation. Sunday night we tore down my bed and the futon. Both of these, my dresser, and my comfy living room chair and footstool were all shoved in the van, literally at some points, but it all fit. Mom decided she had to cram as much as possible so she even took the table my tv was on so it is now sitting on one of the dining room chairs. The living room is ridiculously empty, but at least now the only furniture left is the table and chairs and my desk, which comes apart.
Today I have to pack everything. I've barely scratched the surface besides packing up most of my dishes. I usually like to pack, but I haven't got in the right mood yet. The other thing I am dreading about today is calling Comcast to end my cable service. I hate Comcast and just know they will do something to make a simple phone call ridiculously complicated. Plus I have to drop the cable box off at the closest location. That's just going to suck probably. Oh well, I graduate tomorrow!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Someone else is curious too

I have been working on one of my last big papers today and this afternoon I was conducting research while watching some tv. Despite how it sounds, I was productive while doing this, but one commercial did catch my eye. This paint commercial kept putting parts of questions up on the screen in large font. The first part would show and then the picture would change and the second part would come up, which was usually what the store would be able to answer for you if you come in. The question that caught my eye was "When did school bus yellow... become school bus yellow?" It was split there in the middle so when the first half was up on the screen, I was curious if the second part would be my question and it basically is. For years I have wondered who decided that school buses should be yellow and why that shade? It really isn't yellow, but it has become the color synonymous with safety. It's one of the questions that I like to come up with out of the blue and over the years my mother has learned to just shake her head and move on. No one ever listens to the questions, but now the Sherwin-Williams commercial has proven that someone else out there is just as curious about the random things in life as I am, including the color of school buses.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Got Milk?

For something a little ridiculous, I have to share what Kyle's roommate did recently. He has two roommates, E who has lived with him since freshman year of college, and J who moved in last August when he started technical school in the area. J is much younger than Kyle and E and the rest of us, but his family knows E's family who got him into the spare room at Kyle's. Coming into an established group can be difficult and he often tries to just make everyone happy and be entertaining, but he's a little odd so it often fails. He also lives on cereal, which means that milk consumption at Kyle's shot up drastically since J moved in. Kyle does the grocery shopping and charges E and J $50/month. He often spends a little over that so it's understood that if something runs out before the next month, E and J can pick a few small items up. This obviously includes milk as J uses so much and you can't buy milk for a whole month.
Kyle stopped after work last week and got a gallon of chocolate because he wanted some and also a gallon of white. He got home and found that J had bought two gallons of white so they now had three gallons of white milk and gallon of chocolate. Kyle told J that they all really needed to drink milk since they ended up with so much. A few days later, J tells Kyle that he's been working on the milk and is almost done the chocolate. Why would anyone with a mind think that out of four gallons of milk (three white and one chocolate), that you needed to finish the chocolate off first? J told Kyle that he had told him to drink the chocolate, which is obviously not what he said. He just said to drink the milk and he assumed that J would use his common sense to see that he needed to work on the white milk. Obviously some people don't have any sense, and sadly, this isn't a case of having brains, but no common sense, but having little of either.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

"Box o' Morons"

I have this comic set as my desktop background because it makes me smile despite all my work. I also find it rather appropriate after some of the stupid things I saw people do yesterday. If you have two rectangular boxes, one approximately half the size of the other, how would you combine them? I was looking for something in the smaller box and noticed that it had been put inside the larger one. Instead of placing them inside each other lengthwise, the smaller one had been placed sideways in the larger box so that its longest side was parallel to the larger box's shortest side. If this makes sense, you can see that this caused the sides of the larger box to be pushed out because the smaller box was too wide to fit that way. What goes through people's minds when they do such things?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Grad School

So I am seriously worried about getting everything done this semester. My last one. Ever. I just cannot make myself work. I've already compiled my list of things I do every day and I add to it all the time. I find new things to explore online and new books to read. Or I just reread old books and replay the same games (My win streak in freecell is up to 134). Really, I have three books checked out of the library (the public one) and I have reread all of them at least four times. Have I moved the stack of seven books that I checked out in February for my tourism class paper? Nope. They are all still sitting on top of my printer where I stuck them two months ago so they wouldn't be sitting in my floor anymore. I epitomize procrastination when it comes to school work. If I was paid to do this, it would be done. I hate people who do nothing at work and complain about their jobs. If I'm working, I'm working and things get done promptly. It just doesn't work that way for school related items. Hence I am posting to my blog, which if you notice, I started at the end of last semester when I needed something new to extend my procrastination. The wedding also helps with procrastination because even though everything is pretty much done, there are details to discuss. Kyle and I spent about an hour debating how we would display the seating cards for the reception. I think we figured them out so now I'll have to come up with something else to discuss in order to avoid my work. Only three papers, two presentations, one workshop, and my last final ever to complete. And 32 days to do it in.

Monday, April 13, 2009

What I'm Doing in Grad School

My big internship was with the Hampden Community Archaeology Project and I'm just wrapping it up now. Visit the blog listed below for info and if you live in the Baltimore area, come check out the workshop April 22nd to see a little of Hampden's heritage in person (I'm bringing artifacts to show everyone). You can also learn a little about actual archaeology.



So I have a little thing on my desktop that flashes random pictures from my files and I noticed this one just a minute ago. I always smile when I see it because it was just so funny when it happened. Even better was despite the large red letters and exclamation point, it kept saying "Off Route" as well. Sorry about the blurriness, but this was back in 2006 with my old camera and we were in a moving vehicle. If you can't tell, the GPS thought we were in the middle of the Sound. We were in the Outer Banks and drove up to Roanoke Island. Kenan accidentally missed a turn and we ended up crossing a fairly new bridge back over to the mainland. It was so new the GPS didn't know it was there. :)
This is one of those reasons I will never personally own a GPS unit. I like technology, but I hate the little voice saying "turn left in 200 ft." I like maps and I still look up my directions and write them out by hand before I go somewhere new. Anyway, just thought I would share the memory. Plus, posting is a great way to procrastinate. I've been getting stuff done though, I promise.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Current Thoughts on School

*In truth, I would say that my college lectures taught me a lot, but practically nothing of value has been added to my knowledge during my two years of grad school.

I don't really want anyone to get hit by a bus, but still, I understand the sentiment right now.

If only it was really that simple.

42 days and counting.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Dead Rats

Yesterday I was covering the lab while some undergrads were labeling. It was April 1st so some interesting things happened. We have been rather low on the labeling fluid and the one guy went to check the cupboard for some more. I knew there wasn't any left, but he pulled one out. He couldn't open it so I tried and of course I couldn't either. There was something weird about it and after doing my trick to attempt to open it and failing, he told me it was just water. Here he had taken an empty bottle, filled it with water and glued it shut. This explained the gunk in the bottom as he had used an empty white bottle and switched it to the clear, which we use the most. I guess they planned it on Monday when I'm not in the lab. I think he spent a lot of time planning for April Fool's Day because it sounds like he got all of his friends.
The interesting joke of the day was when one of the girls was labeling a bag of faunal bones. There was a large number of rat bones and she started laying them out in anatomical order on this brown paper. There were actually parts of most of the skeleton including the skull, limbs, and vertebrae. She took a picture of it with her phone so she could show some friends. I made the comment that she should tell them she found it in the back of a cupboard in her apartment. She ended up doing this and sending it to her mom who called back just before they left. She actually believed her. She ended the conversation by saying that she had to go because the exterminator was there. It will be interesting to see how far she took it when I see her next week. I think this was one joke that was actually interesting and a little less common than most that I see.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Going Back

Europe has been on my mind a lot lately and I'm very excited to be honeymooning on the Mediterranean. In honor of this, here is a picture of one of my favorite places from my semester in France: Antibes. I am going to try and take Kyle here on one of our excursions though the other options are all great places too. 193 days til the wedding, which means 195 days until we're in Rome. :)

Monday, March 30, 2009

Worst Driver Ever

So I went to PA again this past weekend as I had an appointment in Lancaster this morning. I spent Friday-Sunday at Kyle's and went to Mom's Sunday afternoon as getting into Lancaster city during morning rush hour is much more easily done by way of the Southern End rather than route 30 out of Chester County. Anyway, when I left Kyle's, I went through some back streets in town to get to rt. 30 as my normal route was off limits due to a bridge closing. I approached a red light behind another driver and stopped. The opposite side was empty, but two cars were approaching. Both sides have a straight/right turn lane and a left turn lane. The first vehicle approaching was turning right and did so once it reached the intersection and saw that no one was coming. The second vehicle was turning left and pulled into the left turn lane. The cross road was a major route and car turning left proceeded to TURN LEFT on the RED light! I have never seen anyone do such a thing. It was not a stop sign and it was not the dead of night. It was Sunday afternoon in a fairly busy area. What a moron. I told Kyle about it and had to say that even when I am sitting in Lancaster County at 2 am and there is no traffic and you know there aren't any cops, I can't make myself run a red light. For some reason I always hit red lights on the occasion that I am out and about in the Southern End late at night because I somehow always approach the light from the non-popular way, which means I have to wait until my presence trips the light.
Anyway, I then proceeded to make two U-turns trying to get on 30 at a spot I had never seen as I for some reason thought I needed 30 East despite my knowing that I didn't want to be on the side of the highway that the 30 East on ramp would put me. It then hit me that to get to Lancaster County from Chester County, you need to go on 30 West. For some reason in my mind, I always go east to get to my mom's. This is probably because I went to school in the mountains of Virginia so I went east to get home and west to get to school. Anyway, I felt like an idiot, but not as much of one as the moron who turned left at a red light.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Web question

So I know nothing about html or any other codes that are behind everything I do and see on my computer. What I want to know is whether it takes much time to make one tiny distinction in code. I assume that once someone is good enough to create an entire site, making one minor edit wouldn't be a big deal, but I think I'm wrong. My complaint is over all the sites where the amount of something changes and it involves a label. This includes blogger where one has comments. That first comment is all by itself, but for some reason blogger shows "1 Comments" and it annoys me, a lot. For facebook users, you have probably seen this in a lot of the apps and throughout the site. I noticed it a long time ago, but excused it because all the apps are created by independent people who may not have the skills to do anything about it. Blogger seems more reputable, which means that it should be able to create code that removes the s when the number is 1 and adds it for all other numbers. I don't think this is that difficult, but maybe I'm wrong.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Grad School Senioritis

For some reason, I can never get work done for class until there is less than 12 hours until the deadline for completion. I tell myself not to procrastinate, but somehow a game of freecell or mahjong pops up on my screen. Either that or I have a sudden urge to catch up on some blogs, my favorite tv shows, or the news. The weather needs checked despite the fact that I won't leave my apartment for quite some time and all three of my emails need checked even though I checked them twenty minutes earlier. Then of course, there is always facebook. Maybe some new pictures were posted or my sister played a turn in our lexulous game. It might be a Saturday afternoon and she doesn't have internet on the weekends, but I still have a need to check. She did recently get internet where she lives so now that is a legitimate excuse. Then I have to check AIM, maybe someone has signed on that I need to talk to, though it's always the same people online. Of course, I can always call my mom or my fiance even though there is nothing new in my life to talk about. There's just so much to do in my life that there isn't time for schoolwork.
I never had senioritis in high school when things didn't matter as I was set and heading to W&L as of December, but college and grad school have had some very serious cases. College senioritis was horrible as I was trying to finish my honors thesis and now I have so many papers and my internship project to wrap up that senioritis is not helping me at all. Thankfully, in 60 days I will be graduating and I will never have another reading assignment in my life. All my reading will be for pleasure again (though it basically is now). I love public libraries, but again with the distractions. Who knew they were so bad for your education.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Snow Day!

What am I doing up at 6:30 am? Obviously I had to check to see whether classes are canceled. It's been snowing here in Maryland since last night and finally the ground is white. Classes all over have been canceled, which is great, for people who have class today. I don't have classes on Mondays. Or Wednesdays or Fridays. It's a pretty nice semester, except for snow days that don't cancel my classes. I kind of wish the snow had come in today and canceled tomorrow's classes because I haven't finished the reading for either of mine. At least I have the snow day to finish right? Well, I had it anyway.
So what am I doing up at 6:30 am if the snow day doesn't matter? It isn't a fun reason. I haven't really been to sleep yet because I have an awful headache so I finally got up and took some ibuprofen. Now maybe I can go to sleep and enjoy the snow day from bed, while finishing my reading.

Monday, February 23, 2009

My First Oscars

So this was the first year that I sat through the entire Oscar ceremony and I have to say that there were enough funny moments to make it worth it. I did mute it often as I didn't really care about the acceptance speeches and the million commercial breaks. I think I watched a total of about 45 minutes, but they were some great 45 minutes. I can't say much about previous broadcasts, but I really liked how they used previous winners to introduce the big categories. I also liked the montages about the various genres and the films from the past year. So below are some of my comments from watching the Oscars.
  • Angelina's 180 carats of emeralds looked like $5 worth of costume jewelry.
  • Ben Stiller's Joaquin Phoenix was fantastic. Look it up.
  • I had no idea Anne Hathaway had theater training and I was surprised at how good she is at singing.
  • Hugh Jackman singing and dancing.
  • James Franco and Seth Rogen with the comedy montage=brilliant. His comment about turning the award into a pipe cracked me up.
  • I cannot whistle and have great respect for Kate Winslet's dad, though I am sure that place has great acoustics that helped him.
  • Asymmetrical dresses are terrible despite what any fashion magazine tells you. (See Reese Witherspoon)
  • "I am Wolverine." Nice plug for his upcoming movie.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Valentine's Day Tradition continues

So Valentine's Day should be about a nice time with your significant other right? Well, Kyle and I decided we are cursed when it comes to this holiday. Our first two were spent at my mom's house, which makes it less special and more weird. That second year we had reservations at a nice restaurant and everything, but things never quite work out as planned. My college gave us a week off in February so I was going to be in PA over Valentine's. It all seemed perfect. Saturday of break I visited Kyle and came home in the afternoon as a snow storm was coming into the area. By the next morning, I felt like crap and didn't want to get out of bed other than to move to the couch. Monday morning it was confirmed that I had the flu. I had never had the flu before and I recommend that everyone avoids getting it at all costs. Also, DO NOT allow the nurse to test you using the new nose test. They place a "flexible" stick thing up your nose to gather a sample to test. It saves days of wondering and such to verify whether you have it or not and it's so great, blah, blah, blah. Well, that stick was NOT flexible and ended up poking me so bad that I cried. It was like getting hit in the nose, which anyone who has had it happen, knows it automatically brings tears to your eyes. This was worse because it was actually hitting you in the nose on the inside. My mother, being her nice self, was crying too, because she was laughing so hard! I told the nurse that Mom should be tested too as I had been around her so long with the flu, but she didn't go for that. Anyway, Valentine's fell on Tuesday and Kyle came to our house again as I was still not well and Mom made us a nice dinner. Definitely not the plan.
The next Valentine's I wasn't in the area and last year doesn't register in my memory, which means we probably didn't see each other. This year I went to Kyle's for the weekend and he was sick all weekend. He was feeling well enough to go out for a nice lunch, but I didn't even get a Valentine's kiss because I didn't want to get sick. Maybe next year we'll have a nice illness free holiday. Since it will be our first Valentine's as a married couple, I have a feeling that that won't happen.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Trying to Concentrate Here

So this is my last semester of school ever and seeing as it is grad school, I'm trying to really focus to wrap everything up. To help with this, I do not have a job for the first time since freshman year of high school. This means that I can really focus on my work (or I can sleep in and read a lot of fiction, which is what I have been doing so far this semester). Seriously though, I have spent several days reading in the library so as to avoid all computer, tv, and fiction related distractions. What I have learned is that all the library etiquette drummed into people in elementary school has been forgotten by years of college and grad school pressure. Or at least that is what I assume has happened.
Most university libraries have carrels available for use by students that are strategically located around the floors. These are just desks with walls on three sides to help you focus on your work. They are quite useful, but they are still open to the surroundings. Yesterday afternoon I went over in the lovely weather and settled into my carrel of choice. A little while later two students come in to look for books. At first I assumed it was an employee with a cart of books to be shelved, but then I saw that the obnoxious rolling was from a suitcase/bookbag. I heard the woman talking as they entered my section, but then they proceeded to look at books in the aisle right next to my carrel. All I had to do was look right and they were in the aisle and they weren't just looking. They were basically talking as if they had to yell to be heard over the massive amounts of noise in the library! The place was dead silent (before they came) and they were a foot apart. They obviously forgot about the 12 inch voice or was my elementary librarian the only one who used that? Their list of books must have been huge because they wandered around the section forever, always talking.
Later, someone came up and asked me if this was the west portion of the library. The library here is two rectangles, one being slightly larger than the other. These are labeled the east and west halves. What's funny is that they guy was an employee who was trying to shelve books. Shouldn't he know which half is which? And why couldn't he just look at the call numbers and the corresponding labels on the shelves? It really isn't that difficult.
Last, but not least, stupid grad. students. Normally I find the undergrads to be more annoying, but last week when I was reading, all the stupid behavior was done by the grad students. Most university libraries provide locked carrels for students doing dissertations (or honors theses as with my undergrad which didn't have grad students). These are just small rooms that lock to allow you to keep out the mountain of reading and work you have for your dissertation. They're useful. I had one for my honors thesis in college and it was nice to not have to pack everything up when I was done working. Anyway, the carrel I was reading at was at the end of a row of locked carrels. At my school these have number locks so you have to punch in a code to enter. A grad student walks by and goes to open a carrel. Her code doesn't work. She moves to the next one and tries again. It still doesn't work. She tries several before actually getting in to what I assume to be hers. What's even more stupid is that she looked in the windows of them and then still tried the door. Wouldn't she recognize her stuff? In the end, she went into hers and then left a few minutes later. I was so tempted to ask why she doesn't memorize the room number for her carrel. She probably wouldn't comprehend the question, but that may be too harsh. Then again, she's a grad student. You would think she'd have a brain, but obviously some of the people on this campus need to track down Oz and make a request.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Crying Over Spilt Soup

So last week was the first week of class in my final semester as a student. I have been going to school since approximately 1988 and I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Anyway, for my last first day of school, it was pretty crappy. I only have class on Tuesdays and Thursdays, which makes for a nice week. My Tuesday schedule involves my being on campus for over three hours between my morning and afternoon classes. Because of this, I took some leftover vegetable soup in for my lunch. I used the same container I used multiple times last semester with no incident. I walked to campus in the first snow storm I have seen here in Maryland only to open my book bag to find a mini lake of soup in the bottom. The lid didn't come off; the broth just leaked all over my bag. My stuff smelled like soup the rest of the day. What pains me the most about the whole incident is that the snow storm finally caused the school to shut down at 11:30am. This meant that my afternoon class was canceled (woohoo) and I didn't need a lunch. I left the stupid thing in the fridge for Thursday and walked home to scrub the bottom of my bag. Now the next time it rains, Tide bubbles will probably form on my bag because it's tough to rinse out. (This has happened to me before when Tide was accidentally spilt on my book bag so it does happen.) What a very frustrating last first day.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Marketing Idea: Creep Out the Buyers

So it has been a little while and now I have a few lighter things to share. First off, I would still be in bed right now due the fact that I have no class or work and was up until after midnight finishing a book, but my phone rang half an hour ago. My sister attends college up near the NY border and she lives with our grandparents to save money. The problem on snowy days is that they have no internet so she doesn't get emails from professors saying class is canceled. She called because one news station said the college was closed while the other four didn't and the weather line at her school didn't say anything. So being the good, but grumpy sister, I am, I checked her school website and her email and we decided she should probably go to class. She's going to be mad if that one tv channel was right. Oh well.

Now that I'm up though, I decided to share something I noticed when I went grocery shopping Monday. I just got back to school Sunday as our spring term started this week. I hadn't been here for six weeks so I went to the store. One of my favorite winter food items is chili so I stocked up on kidney beans as they were on sale. Obviously stores realize we like chili when it's cold. Anyway, I picked up Hanover beans because they were actually cheaper than the store brand and when I was putting them away in a cupboard, I noticed this:
Is every brand now making creepy mascots? What kid wants to play with a stuffed kidney bean or a chick pea? And why does the chick pea have a mustache for hair? I don't know about you, but the kidney bean looks a little more like something else at first glance, and definitely not something with which I would want to play. Give me a Serta sheep any day.