Weighing In

Today ends the last massage challenge and starts the next. I did my best just to try to stay the same. (I gained 1.7 pounds - close, and I guess it could have been worse considering how much has been going on. Everyone else had pretty much the same month as I did.)

Yesterday was sort of the "first day of summer" for me. It was so enjoyable just to relax a little. I am taking my tasks one at a time, and making time for me. I have to say this out loud so that I will listen to myself.

I want to write something sappy about how awesome Mark is, but I don't want him to get embarrassed. He makes me a better person and I get reminded of that when I have a little more time to spend with him.

I dropped my summer class to focus all my concentration on the Exam. It was looking like my class was going to route too much time away from my main priority. Now I have to decide if I drop the minor altogether. I can take a class on a subtopic I'm not interested in during Fall, but the point was that I like studying topics of Religion that I'm interested in and have them count for something - not because I didn't have enough class requirements already.

Anyway - Off to the emissions testing center with the escort. Cross your fingers for me. That little hooptie is pretty old.

dreaming universe. Posted by Picasa


Summer Retirement

My mother-in-law is always saying that retirement is more work than going to work and that she is more busy now than ever.

I can appreciate that right now. I had all these remarkable fun things planned to enjoy as soon as school is out and it has been almost a month and my time is at a premium working on things that have been put off during the semester or before the wedding. I usually have a little "to-do" list that I'm working off, but never this long or involved. I've barely skimmed it.

I want to make that time for myself to enjoy this life a little. It really feels like it is booking and here I am a few weeks away from an ending-in-0 birthday and staring at the digit before the 0 and saying "where did that come from?" It's just a blur. I'm happy with where things are, because I worked darn hard to get to this place, I just didn't expect it to take so long, you know? My roses died (as all plants under my care eventually do,) so I haven't smelled them in a while.

This is also kind of the first time in life that I have felt like the future I've been planning for is not in the future anymore. I am living "in the real world" now. It's an interesting feeling.

Things have slowed down a little. The overtime at work has petered a little (although I still have to work my entire weekend next week.) I've gotten back into the routine at the gym, which is making me pretty happy. I missed it a lot!

mind the gap. Posted by Picasa


Weekend Away

We had a pretty nice time out in LA over the weekend. It was an easy drive Sunday. When we got there, we relaxed for a while, then drove around town looking at neighborhoods that we may want to look at when we move. It was interesting to see places I didn't know were there and see how some familiar places had changed in the 7 years since I lived there.

Monday, it rained really hard. Mark and I went out for coffee and a random drive. We got so lost and ended up in Encino and it took us an hour in rush hour traffic to get back. I thought it was fun, but then I wasn't driving. Then, we went to the ArcLight and saw the DiVinci Code in digital at the dome. It was pretty fun. Mark became ill, so Scott and I spent most of the afternoon talking and driving around again. We went to the obervatory look out, walked some of the trailed. It had stopped raining and the city was so pretty. There was a mist on the hills and the air was so cool and fresh. It felt so amazing to be there. I just like being there. I could sit around and do nothing and be perfectly content there. It's just like that for me. How you feel when you're "home."

When we came back to the house, Mark still wasn't feeling better, so Scott and I ate dinner without him. I highly recommend the restraunt "California Chicken." They serve wraps and sides, which are extremely good. After dinner, Mark started feeling better and I started getting sick. I went to bed and the guys hung out for a while.

We got up early and drove back to the desert before rush hour hit. Again, it was a quick drive. I love taking drives with Mark. It's one of those rare times when people just talk and are not preoccupied with something else. Brittany and I used to always say our drives to and from school were out best times for the same reason. We got subway on the way and realized that we were both still a little sick. I thought about calling in, but had signed up for a 12 hour shift... so I decided to go in because it would be hard for them to cover it. In the middle of the night, I kept waking up so sick that I would regret this later, but it wasn't that bad, and now it's over. I think I'm better.

I have another 12 tomorrow. I am going to appreciate my next check. Last week had 80 hours. This week (so far) has 52 and maybe 60 if I sacrifice one of my days off.

oral imperative. Posted by Picasa


Vacation Time!

No comic tomorrow or the next day. I'm going on vacation to LA. just to hang out.

This week was a marathon!

scaredy bird Posted by Picasa


the fifth dimension. Posted by Picasa


Great News for Utah!

Because I have been doing so much overtime, my work is going to let me take extra days off this year to go to the family camp in Utah for the 24th of July.

I will be there from Monday, July 17 to Sunday July 23. Feel free to schedule appointments to hang out if there is something special on a particular day that you would like to try to take dips on me for. I don't know who will be coming with me yet.

For those of you in dire stress over what to get me for my birthday, here is a list of things I would like that is long enough that I can still be suprised about what gets picked:
  • a wireless router to network the PC to the laptop (I have a wireless card on the laptop already)
  • an i-pod (Mark is going to buy one, if you want to pitch in) and a wrist carrying pocket thing so I can use it while I cycle.
  • a large supply of white or black ankle socks all matching style in a nice brand name (ped, adidas, nike...)
  • Guitar stand
  • cute pajamas
  • Victoria Secret lotion (pink or green)
  • Women's Large T-shirt with "Rosie the Riveter" saying "We can do it!"
  • Stuff I like that might trigger gift ideas: art and writing utensils, scrapbooking, coffee, massage, letter-writing, and working out.

knot appreciated. Posted by Picasa


smell my head. Posted by Picasa


morbid curiousity.

morbid curiousity. Posted by Picasa


grain of sand. Posted by Picasa


educating children about god. Posted by Picasa


The flip side of mother's day. Posted by Picasa


Keeping Up

I finished all my finals over the last week. Now I have tons of overtime from work to keep me from posting anything interesting. I have 32 extra hours on top of my regular 40 this week.

I decided to postpone the exam until August. 13 extra weeks to study.

teacup vigilantes Posted by Picasa


deadline. Posted by Picasa


lingerer. Posted by Picasa


Alternate Time Line

In an alternate timeline, I took my last final yesterday and it was a smashing grand slam.

In the current timeline, my alarm clock did not go off and I got a big round zero.

On the bright side, I no longer need to worry about pushing my grades up that little bit to graduate with the highest honor, but can be content to rest solidly in the middle-honors bracket.

I'm handling it with abnormal calm and resolve.

just when you thought it couldn't get any worse... Posted by Picasa


darn shootin' Posted by Picasa


platitudes of graditude Posted by Picasa



I want to draw a distinction between logical reasoning and common sense. I notice that a lot of people use these names interchangeably. I use both techniques to analyze the world and justify my thinking, but I am careful about which one I use for which. I think it is important to use logic to justify one's thinking, whereas the lesser accurate but useful common sense serves well for analyzing the world. The comparison:

Common sense: makes use of cultural norms and a general overview of social framework to place into context the new idea. A couple of great examples: The neighborhood is rough. Take your pepperspray. The Islamic tradition, preoccupied with following law carefully, often requires elders (who are specially trained in techniques of common sense) to take new, unencountered situations and frame them within a metaphor that fits already encountered situations in order to determine the moral standing of the new situation within Islamic law or Sharia. The cost of healthcare makes having good health insurance not just a safe bet, but common sense. I use this to make sense of and navigate my world successfully.

Logical reasoning: makes use of mathematical operators and standard procedures for generalizing statements into arguments. Those arguments can be tested by strict procedures for "soundness, truthfulness, and validity." It is not necessary, in general, to know what the statements even are in order to see if the argument "makes sense." At no time would anyone use their feelings to interpret whether something is true or not. I use this kind of reasoning to determine whether my beliefs and opinions make sense, since it is hard to remove oneself from one's opinions or beliefs to evaluate them without a strict objective process.

Usually, when someone says someone else's logic is bad, what they mean is that person has little or no common sense.

butt homework stinks Posted by Picasa


Make up my mind

As you've noticed, I'm posting my comics now. They're fun. But they don't do any good in my filing drawer.

Anyway - help me decide... I'm trying to logically decide if it is better to take my big exam next week with a very low probability of passing just to have some experience with it or reschedule it for the end of summer and study like crazy all summer. Either way, I'm out money. Rescheduling is cheaper than taking it twice. My practice tests are getting 40% or lower. I will only be buying 12 weeks to study, or roughly 250 hours. I might improve by 25% or more... which may put me in the curve at the lower end of the passing 40% of test takers... I don't want to feel like I'm procrastinating to avoid responsibility. Especially since I already rescheduled once, and I'm not much better off with the three months that bought me because school priorities in the balance made it hard to put in more than 5-8 hours a week. I would prefer never to look at the study materials again. If I reschedule, I would need to put myself on a very disciplined schedule and not mess around during the summer much at all. (What a bummer.) But, I would probably be studying for it again if I failed anyway, so there's not much difference in that respect.

come on lady, jump already. Posted by Picasa


kung fu master Posted by Picasa


I Like Jamie and other significant facts

Jamie is really making me jealous that I'm not trekking with her in Tel Aviv. I would love to see the holy land. I wouldn't mind Morocco and Egypt either.

I have two finals this week and then I'm free, free I tell you (to study further for my big exam.)

My big summer plans include taking a summer course on Buddhism to complete my minor in religions requirement and scrapbooking - tons of scrapbooking. I still haven't scrapped the weekend vacation Mark took me on to propose last July. You might say I'm a little behind.

Speaking of little behinds... we started our second weight-loss challenge on Tuesday. For this one, we are all keeping a food/exercise journal and bringing it to class on Tuesdays in order that others can scowl and tisk. I've never kept one for more than 24 hours. But so far, it is really an eye-opener. I measured out suggested servings on everything and at the end of the day, I only had 850 calories. I guess they weren't kidding when they say portion control and if you read the size of the serving... (I was shooting for 1200.)

I'm starting to obsess about biking. I want those padded gel panties that you never want to see anyone biking in public in, and some of those shoes that strap in to the pedals so that when it's time to stop you can't put your foot down and you crush your elbow into your collar bone and die, and one of those fancy racing bikes with skinny, tractionless and unsafe looking tires. Reason? I like to feel strong. (and when my old favorite clothes fit again, I can start a new retro 90's fashion movement.)


Final Weigh-In

SEVEN pounds. Seven is my new favorite number.