Monthly Archives: December, 2003


I watched Sister Act on tv last night. (Rajni, it happened again.) I had already laid around for an hour watching Friends and Jeopardy!, and I’ve been unmotivated as well as unfocused lately, so I figured it was worth a view. Kathy Najimy (Sister Mary Patrick, the big one) is a really good singer.

I woke up early this morning (ugh) to have my car worked on. I left late, though, because it was really cold. I had to come back in for gloves so my hands wouldn’t freeze while I scraped the ice (!) off the windshield. I got to my grandparents’ house without getting lost (yay!), then brought the car back down to the shop place up the street. I waited around at the house for hours. My grandma and I talked some, and then we watched court shows and The Price is Right. That always reminds me of my paternal grandmother. We used to watch that when she took care of me before we left for Japan.

On my way back, I successfully changed lanes without getting honked at (which is a very big accomplishment, to me at least), but there was a messy accident on one of the roads. I saw the long line of cars in front of me and the police car and did the only thing I could think of. I called my mom. I wound up backtracking to Burger King. She couldn’t remember if the road home had a sign, and neither of us wanted me to get lost, so we met there for lunch and she led me home.

I have work to do. Quite a bit. I’ve decided that today I will write my essay for the contest. It has to be done sometime, and the sooner I start, the sooner I’ll be finished. You know, I hated being stressed so much lately. But one good thing about the stress was that it pushed me to, well, do the things on my growing to-do list, to make it as short as I could. Now that my list is relatively shorter, I have less drive to clear it off. I know that some stress is necessary, because it motivates us to do stuff, but I never thought being relieved of my massive stress would make me so… lazy.


I set my alarm for 9am, in anticipation of my grandfather calling. I decided that, if he was going to call, I’d hear it, so I went back to sleep. Not the best idea. I had a very unpleasant dream (with the predictable school-related elements) that actually made me cry. That’s never happened before. Dream!Me cried, and then RealAndConscious!Me was crying, too. Then I realized I was crying, and managed to snap out of the dream and drag myself out of bed.

My grandfather never called, but Greg did. We talked, but he was watching the extended edition of The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, so he was only half-listening. But that was okay because I was going through old CosmoGirl!‘s at the same time, and then I left to eat lunch. He asked me to call him back, and I did, but he was shopping (he’s not feeling well today), so he said he’d call me back. (Modified telephone tag?) He never did, but that’s okay because I had other things to do, and he’s at work now (I presume).

I brainstormed for my latest AP Lit essay contest, but I don’t think I came up with anything significant. At least it’s a start. It took forever, but mostly because I’ve had great trouble being focused lately. For instance, I heard a car start outside, and it sounded familiar, so I stood up to look out the window. Imagine my surprise when I saw my 6’5″, sixty-something grandfather backing my car into the driveway! See, he was supposed to call me this morning. My car needs a part so it can pass the state emissions test (second try), and he ordered it for me, but it needs installing. My mom said he’d call to (a) tell me to bring the car down there, so the part could be installed while I wait, then follow me back down to the VEIP for the second test, or (b) tell me to do all that tomorrow. (Haven’t you always (or at least occasionally wondered what those “VEIP” signs mean? It’s Verified Emissions Inspection Point. Now you know.) So I was quite confused as I watched him lay down in the driveway to look under the car. I don’t know what he was doing, whether or not he actually did anything, or why he still has a key to my car, but since the car’s still out there in its spot, I’m good.

Ooh! Mykella is back, at her very own domain. That’s a neat gift. Lovely layout, as usual. Great “girl” section, too. I’ve been meaning to redo mine, with something significant, but my lack of focus and penchant to lie around isn’t helping. Great to have her back. Oh, and I forgot to mention in my comment: Sticky caps annoy me, too. FictionAlley built a habit of writing everything out, neatly, and I still do. Even in instant messages. (To anyone that follows that link: Is it just me, or do the female characters look decidedly male?)

Speaking of The Two Towers (I know, I’m late), The Return of the King was an excellent movie. I like muted colors in movies, especially in this trilogy. [SPOILERS] At one point, I totally forgot the name of Minas Tirith (one of the castles). I was honestly sitting in the theater, thinking, “M… M-something. It’s two words….” I get confused with the names a lot. I finally managed to tell Merry from Pippin, greatly assisted by them not being together all the time in this movie. The ghost warriors were cool. Shelob is evil and creepy and bad. I hid in Greg’s shoulder for most of the first scene, and ducked back when she showed up again. Why, why, why are giant spiders so common? I’m sure the special effects aspect was great, but had I watched, I’m also sure I would have been too terrified to fully appreciate it. Even seeing Frodo wrapped in web-goo made me shiver. I was distracted that the picture faded out about six times. The “fade to black” (or white, as the case may be) usually means the movie’s over, but you can never be sure until you see the director’s name. Overall, great movie. I may even be convinced to read the books… eventually.

Does anyone else ever have that weird Internet Explorer thing where, when you push the Tab key, it switches windows? How do I make that stop?


I fell asleep reading Ex-Colored Man not too long ago. The book isn’t that bad, and I wasn’t really sleepy, so I don’t know why I just dozed off like that. I intended to read all three assigned chapters, but after one paragraph of the third, I just closed the book and rolled over. I only meant to sleep for minute, but that turned into twenty.

I did basically nothing today, besides that reading. I rearranged a bit to fit my DVD rack in, and dusted, but nothing much. It’s been a boring day. I’m basically just waiting to be called for dinner, and then I’ll watch tv or a movie or something.

Oh, and because I missed it last week in the wake of Christmas, the belated Friday Five: Year’s End.

1. What was your biggest accomplishment this year? Surviving the pile of stress that school dumped on me. Oh, and finally getting my driver’s license.

2. What was your biggest disappointment? On a minor note, getting Bringing Down the House as a birthday present. I’ve never mentioned that movie, let alone seen it; they bought it so they could have it. I hate presents like that. If you’re going to buy a Perfect Pancake, buy it for the family. Don’t make it a “present” for me. No one else gets presents like that. On a much more significant note, being crushed by Adkins. I knew it wouldn’t be easy, but I thought I would put in enough time to come out with higher scores and such. No big deal, but the biggest of the deals I can think of right now.

3. What do you hope the new year brings? Less stress, of course. More acceptance letters, scholarship money, and decisiveness. If you hadn’t noticed, I have a thing about being indecisive.

4. Will you be making any New Year’s resolutions? If yes, what will they be? No, intentionally. I make them, then I break them. It’s pointless. I read somewhere once that it only takes two weeks to make or break a habit if you do it consciously, so in a way, that’s my resolution: I resolve not to make a resolution. If I feel something needs to change, I’ll just change it. No pressure, no lists, but still results.

5. What are your plans for New Year’s Eve? Well, I would very much like a midnight kiss this year, but as driving after midnight on a provisional license is technically illegal, I’m unlikely to get it. So it may just be me, the Internet, and MTV again.


You know what’s nifty? Puppet shows.

I watched part of Two Weeks Notice this morning while I ate my Cheerios. Pretty good. Hugh Grant is quite funny. I mean, he was funny in Love, Actually, but still. It could have been a fluke.

We went over to Papa and Bridgette’s house today to exchange gifts and mingle with that side of the family. Papa and Bridgette gave me cash, and I got a Target (!) giftcard from my Uncle John and his wife Harding. My Aunt Linda and cousins and such gave me this really nice white tiger sculpture. They look almost lifelike, except ceramic, small, and not at all ferocious. John and Harding came up from… I think they live in a suburb in Virginia. I don’t see them often, so it was quite nice, especially since they brought Sydney and Jackson. Sydney is three, adorable, and I think she’ll be even prettier as she ages. She has the neatest hair, part of that whole black/white gene-mixing bit. Not unlike mine. It was the first time I met Jackson, since he’s about ten months and we only ever see them on holidays. He was adorable, too, but in that fun baby way. Not at all fussy. Big smiler. After he got his gift from us (an Elmo piano thing that made noise the whole way there, inside its wrapping), Sydney pushed the buttons and she and Jackson danced. Well, they swayed from side to side, but that’s about as close as they’re gonna get at that age. Papa’s spaghetti was good, and I wasn’t totally bored, and my mom brought me back early (which is good because otherwise I’d still be there).

I fought my way through the rest of my discussion points when I got back. I’m so unfocused lately, but only because I have some time, so I can afford to be unfocused. And I have lots of stuff to distract me. I got some leftovers (macaroni is good all the time) and watched the beginning of Two Week Notice (HBO is fun), then some of the special features from Pirates of the Caribbean on my dual thingy. (Must think of a useful name for that.) That goes on my list of the best movies ever. At least, if I had such a list, it’d be on there. Yeah.

Mykella got a domain for Christmas! Interesting gift, but quite useful. I wouldn’t have expected her to join the ranks of free-hosted like me, and I miss her blog. Especially with all the nice things she’s said lately about me and mine.

I finally placed my Amazon order last night. I’m almost having Fearless withdrawal. That gives me a week or so to work through The Swiss Family Robinson (which I’m starting to regret picking up at all) and The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man for Ms. Sim.

Dear Lord, does it feel good to finally get a break from the stress ride that has become my life. That is all.


A belated Merry Christmas to all.

The rugrats were tame this year, so we started in on the presents at about 7am. We had to distribute everything first, which took a while, and then we kids attacked the piles while our parents watched. They always open theirs last. As usual, the rugrats’ piles were bigger than mine, but I had a mysterious large box. My dad kept misunderstanding some of the rugrats’ presents. (I guess you had to be there.) I got everything I asked for, and some I didn’t, like this nifty DVD/VCR dual player. I think that’s the most useful piece of technology there is, because you can watch new stuff on DVD without giving up the old stuff. And I’d asked for a bunch of movies, so it worked out nicely.

Eventually, we all got dressed and went out to my grandma’s house for dinner. My grandma’s the kind of person who doesn’t mind who shows up at her house. I swear, every time we go there for an occasion, someone drops by that I’ve never seen before. And at least two of my cousins are always around. My first cousin, Labrons, has this issue with having kids. He has five, I think. Cansais (pronounced like “Kansas”) and Cannada are great. They’re cute, but moreover, they’re good. Labrons, Jr. and Tayvonne are bad. They managed to break a few of their Christmas presents, turn off the lights so they could try out flashlights, play with a CD that wasn’t theirs, and open presents that weren’t theirs. There’s something wrong with a child that will go into a bag of presents and open one at random after being specifically told not to. The house was too noisy for me to read, so I sat around and ate, and watched part of We’re Back with my family. They laughed at me because I knew the words to the songs. It’s a cute movie!

We came home early for a trip to grandma’s house, around 7:00. I started playing Payday with the rugrats, but they lost interest when we watched Pirates of the Caribbean — one of my presents. Great movie. So many facets of entertainment: action, romance, comedy, a little spookiness with the undead pirates and all.

And now that Christmas is over, I have work to do. Ugh. But I suppose the sooner I start on it, the sooner it’ll be done and I can go back to doing nothing. Doing nothing is great fun, especially after all the stress I’ve had lately. (Oh, and Mykella, thank you for the lovely card. Your pictures look great!)


I hit the snooze button once this morning, but I wasn’t as dead tired as I was last week, so it was okay. The rugrats may or may not have missed their bus this morning. I drop them off at the bus stop on my way to school. It’s no problem for me to give them a ride; the school is right along the road I take. I guess they like to take the bus. Anyway, there was no one at our stop this morning, so I took them on to school.

I got there a bit early, which is such a relief now after months of riding the perpetually late bus. I saw Rajni on the way in. I’m glad I nominated (or do they just pick winners from the nominations?) her for “Always Seen Smiling,” ’cause she is. It’s so hard to be depressed around Rajni — not that that’s a bad thing. On the contrary, it’s good.

The only thing I did of substance was in math class. I think I did well on the test, except for one problem I just couldn’t figure out. Maybe I tried to make it more complicated than it was. We had an “independent day” in RP, so I did my math homework, same as always, and talked to Danelle and Elizabeth. I started making up a quiz (from after the SAT video!) in Geology, but I only half finished because he had The Core on in the background. Leave it to Mr. Witko to find a vaguely geological movie to show. I mean, my Algebra II teacher once showed Remember the Titans. Good movie, but they only mentioned math once. I wasn’t complaining.

Hope showed me the cute purse she made for Mykella at lunch. Hope is so creative like that. She recycled Mykella’s own jeans for the pockets and lined it with pink gingham. If I hadn’t just gotten a new purse for my birthday, I’d ask her to make me one. I might do it anyway before we split up after graduation. (Oh my gosh, is that really in just six months? Holy.)

We watched Glory in AP US History. I’ve seen it before, but it was still good. Tomorrow, we play Trivial Pursuit. I was bad at that game the last time I looked at the cards, but then again, I was twelve. I predict that when Mr. Adkins is on our side (for half the game, to even things out ’cause Mr. Adkins is like an elephant… he never forgets. He’s only slightly gray ;)), we’re going to stomp the boys.

We analyzed some poetry with Ms. Sim: John Donne’s “Death, be not proud,” and Emily Dickinson’s “Because I could not stop for death.” We only half-paid attention, but she knew that. It’s pointless trying to teach this late in the year… though I wouldn’t put it past Ms. O’Neal tomorrow. We also spent the first period down the hall with Mr. Taylor, watching his AP English class do “Perimus and Thisby”, from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” my favorite Shakespeare play. Megan was the Prologue. She did well. I remember she had trouble memorizing The Bard before (from “Macbeth”), but her lines were flawless this time. Jorge was Perimus. Oh, Lord. He was hilarious. From the fake wig to the falsetto to those characteristic hairy guy legs peeking out from under his dress, he was perfect. I nearly died laughing. Everyone’s delivery was perfect.

After school, Greg came with me while I ran a few errands. I stopped by Mrs. Anderson for another recommendation. I swear I thought I was finished, but the people at UMBC told me to apply for the Meyerhoff Program even though the deadline has passed. And even though I’m not going to be a science, engineering, or math major. I wrestled with my choices, but I decided to apply undecided. (That’s an oxymoron to beat all.) I know that may hurt my chances for admission… but maybe not. I’m flexible. I’m not likely to be bent towards all those concrete things (like math and science), but I’m open to everything from history to anthropology (is that a real science?) to business.

What was I saying? Oh. I love Mrs. Anderson. She’s so easygoing. I find that older people are generally nicer. I figure, they’ve been around long enough to know what battles to fight, and a lot about the way the world and people are. That must come in handy. Anyway, she wrote lovely things about me on my recommendation form. I should see if I can copy that in the library tomorrow. Though Ms. Jefferson gets anal about her library. I walked in there once to look for my umbrella, and she ran me out because I was snacking on Goldfish at the time.

I made some tea when I got home. I have a killer sore throat. It hurts to move it at all, even when I laugh or smile. Not that the pain has stopped me from doing either of those things, mind you. And my dad had a hankering for Chinese food, so I had that for the second time in as many days. I’ll tell you, Chinese people make pretty good American food. I’m easy to please, though — as long as there are no vegetables. What some people call “bland,” I call “good.”

A belated congratulations to Megan (and Stephanie, I think — I’m so sorry for forgetting, but my mind has been busy lately) for her acceptance to Frostburg State University! It really is comforting getting that first “thick” envelope. (For the record, my Penn State letter was big, thick, and said “Congratulations!” on the front. No mystery to speak of.)

About my senior pictures: I’ve had them since, like, September. I don’t like them very much, but I’m warming up to them. I tend to dislike all pictures of myself. They turned out okay, except I don’t like my hair much. Since I’m not really fond of them, and my mom paid for them anyway, I’m letting her hold onto them until invitation time. Then I suppose I’ll get the rest. (Seeing as most of my relatives are the people we’ll invite, and they’ve already got larger-size pictures, there should be plenty for me.) If not, I’ll eventually convince her that most people don’t care if their pictures will go all wonky in five years, if they have them that long. Color reproductions at CVS are fine. And there’s always scanners. Pixels don’t fade.

And now that I have given all my lovely readers the traditional eye strain, I will stop and let you recover.


Yesterday, I did pretty much nothing. I read some more chapters of a fanfic I’d long neglected, which was nice.

My parents went out last night for my mom’s birthday (which was Thursday). They stayed at the Ritz Carlton in Virginia, but apparently my mom kept trying to tell my dad how he could have spent less. Leave it to her to want to economize a birthday splurge. He gave her diamond earrings, too. I don’t think I could handle diamond earrings, for fear of losing them or breaking them. Maybe Diamonique, though. (Yeah, I sometimes pause on QVC while I switch channels. As long as I don’t buy anything, I’m fine.)

I got up early this morning so I’d have time to wrestle with my hair. My mom took me out to Waldorf today. I got another present for Greg, and two for her. I don’t know if she’ll like one of them, but I hope she does. I try not to give people books. Why would I give someone something I like? I would have gotten her a Danielle Steel book, since that’s all she reads anyway, but I settled with a funny Chicken Soup: Cartoons for Moms book. Then we went to Target, where I found some inexpensive Christmas cards and frame for my homecoming picture. If I hadn’t flinched, it would have been perfect. My left eye doesn’t open quite as far as my right, and those horrible umbrella lights photographers have usually make me flinch. My senior pictures turned out okay, though. If I warn the photographer, they can usually figure out how to minimize the wacky-eye effect.

We stopped by the Shoppers center up the street on our way back. I never knew there were stores around back, closer to Chi-Chi’s (the one where Choi worked). But there’s a beauty supply store and a Chinese food place. I had American food, as always. Good chicken.

So now I am officially finished with Christmas shopping and wrapping. Yay! I just need to sign my Christmas cards and deliver everything. It felt so productive and contributory to be able to put presents under the tree. It’s getting wonderfully crowded.

I have nothing else to say. This calls for a meme.

01. Alice in Wonderland or Through the Looking Glass? My favorite book! What a coincidence. I’ll go with Through the Looking Glass, because I had to memorize “Jabberwocky” in the fourth grade and still remember it.
02. Write a question and answer it here. This is a cop-out. How many websites have you kept and where? My first was on Geocities. The old Geocities, when there were neighborhoods and there was no connection to Yahoo!. It was in the 7000’s in the Enchanted Forest, but we moved soon after I decorated it for Christmas and I never saw it again. Then I got my beloved blog (::hugs blog::) and a storage page at Freewebs.
03. What would the worst movie ever be about? Sleep. Just watching people sleep. Not even interesting people that act out their dreams or beat up their spouse unconsciously. Just normal, boring people sleeping.
04. Leopard or plaid? Plaid. It’d have to be a cute plaid, though. I have a pair of pajama pants that are purple, green, and pink plaid.
05. What would you consider ordinary? Grocery shopping. This is a vague question.
06. What is out of the ordinary? A person who wins the lottery, but stays in their current home and keeps their job, just to have something to do all day. Out of the ordinary, but respectable.
07. Do you ever watch COPS? Never.

Four days until Christmas? How’d that happen? Huh.

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