Sunday, October 30, 2005

like a tapeworm

Relief Society and Elders Quorum were combined today. Sister and I were sitting together, in the same seats we had warmed during Sacrament and Sunday School. We were chatting and I was glancing around to. . . I'm not sure why. I knew Tolkien Boy wasn't there and there isn't really anyone else that I 1)know and 2) want to talk to. But in the process of glancing around, I realized that a nice-looking young man was trying to catch my attention to see if the seats next to us were open. They were, so I nodded and moved my purse.

The NLYM and his roommate introduced themselves as John and Michael, respectively. Sister and I intro'd ourselves. John then asked where we live--this is an insanely spread out ward. I gave him our address and we discovered that they live in the cul-de-sac our house sits on the corner of. Or rather, they discovered that we live nearby.

The meeting began and, with the exception of some peanut gallery remarks, our conversation ended. (When the speaker announced that he was talking about scholarships, Michael cracked, "Ah yes. Filthy lucre.") After the meeting, the guys left and Sister and I began to leave, helping put up a few chairs first. We were searching for our roommate when John appeared to thank us for letting them sit next to us. Sister charmingly "you're welcome"d him and then asked again where he lives. When he told her, I had to add, "You know the place. It's where Dan lived." Dan is our cousin and John was his roommate/mission buddy.

John finally got distracted by another girl, and Sister and I found our roommate and made our way out of the building and home. We got home and while our roommates made dinner for their men, Sister and I worked on homework, etc. Dan (who is dating roommate A) came over. When Sister came out to the kitchen, he commented that he had run into John, who had told him that "he met some cute girls today at church." Dan replied, "You must be talking about my cousin. She's engaged, so step off." I waited (out in my study and out of sight) for Sister to point out that I was there too, but she just laughed.

I know I harp on this too much, but it bothers me. Because no one in their. . . and by "their" I mean "his". . . right mind would describe me as cute. I've had this conversation before, multiple times. But why couldn't John be talking about me? He didn't observe anything other than my exterior today--no scary eg feminist statements made, no allusion to grad school. Does it naturally and obviously have to be Sister? I said something to this effect, but neither Dan nor Sister heard me. So now I'm just going to pout about it. No, I'm just going to continue to be annoyed with my state of being.

in no particular order

1. Kapka's annual Halloween party tonight. I admit, I dressed up, but didn't go in costume. Costumes are for people who can be wacky and spontaneous. The last Halloween costume I wore was Lois Lane--that way I could wear a suit and look good without embarrassing myself. Miss K showed up as a very sexy angel. Maybe I need to look into getting a set of wings.

2. Saw Elizabethtown. That decision was one part Orlando Bloom/Kirsten Dunst (I admit to often enjoying her as an actress and to often enjoying looking at him, although not in LotR) and one part the word "Elizabeth" was in the title. It actually felt like I was watching four films all happening to the same guy, but that's okay. I enjoyed it, very much so. Except for Dunst's Southern accent. I couldn't quite believe it. She did have some great lines, though. In fact, add Claire Colburn to my list of roles I wouldn't mind playing.
Everyone is less mysterious than they think they are.

I'm hard to remember, but I'm impossible to forget.

I'm going to miss your lips. And everything attached to them.

We peaked on the phone. (

3. I feel complete tonight. Complete and yet empty at the same time. Sister and Fiance are in the next room, cuddling on the bean bag, whispering what I suspect to be absurd and unnecessary things. And even though I have great friends and an excellent career ahead of me, I want that. I wanted that in the theater today--to have someone to poke at the good lines and someone to put their arm around me during the beautiful scenes and someone to start analyzing it with me as we watch the credits--all the credits.

4. I think this is a new thought, at least for this list. K pointed out to me tonight my ability to develop a crush on any new guy who presents himself. And this is all too true. But I can usually dismiss those crushes quickly. As of tonight, the list is empty and while part of me is pleased with this open dance card, part of me is sad that there just isn't anyone to want to be with on a Saturday night. Or any other night.

5. I just felt like the list should end on an even number. "Everyone is less mysterious than they think they are." Amen, sister.

Friday, October 28, 2005

A post for the sophisticate. . . and everyone else

Miss K:

just wanted to say hi.

word has it you're flirting with our mutual friend.

yes, I mean dickens.

Honey, I'm flirting with everyone lately. I finally decided it was safe again. And no, I don't know what that means. But it's lovely and fun and fantastic. I am an excellent flirt.

I love you--don't you care?

I opened the door of the Fobcave tonight to find rain coming down in fierce straight-shots. My first vocal reaction was "Oh crap." (I'm afraid it was. It should have been "Oh hell," but it wasn't. And tonight I choose not to elaborate.) The second reaction was a shriek when I misjudged the width of the river running up against the curb. And my third reaction was to dance. In the rain. But I stopped myself. Logic stepped in and said, "No honey. You could slip and fall. A car could swing around the corner. You could embarrass yourself." So I didn't dance. But I did watch the road on the way home. The steetlights color-bathed the pavement and made the night brighter than day with the reflection off the water.

I do wish I had danced. Maybe I will now.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Too late to still be awake and thinking

I'm wondering if I can maintain this friendship. I've been hurt so many times. You have hurt me so many times. And I keep returning, keep letting you unknowingly pick away at me. Should I keep up this relationship? Can I keep forgiving you? Can I keep being your friend and keep helping you?

Tonight I don't want to. Tonight I want to yell at you, but you'd never hear me because I'd do it with a smile, just flirtacious enough for you to forget, just like you always do.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

the short list

1. reserved
2. taken
3. wonder if not interested in women
4. not attractive
5. permanently preoccupied
6. spoke to today. myself not attractive.

must and will indulge in chocolate and a haircut.

me, myself, and me again

Today has been one of those off days to the nth degree. I don't know how I didn't manage to get any rest last night--I know I slept, but I don't feel as if I slept. And I don't remember any dreams, so the physical exhaustion makes no sense. And the mental exhaustion I'm just going to chalk up to grading papers and conversing with Tolkien Boy last night.

I'm listening to Rascal Flatts. I know I just blogged a day ago complaining about Sister wanting them for wedding reception music. But I felt like RF today. And now I'm kicking myself for being such an ornery hypocrite.

I focus too much on myself. I know this. And if anyone said this to me about him or herself, I would say, "Good for you. That's how it's supposed to be right now. This is our time to be selfish." But I'm starting to want more than living for myself. This doesn't just mean someone to be with romantically, but doing things I don't directly benefit from or doing things for others that doesn't involve my job or my research or me.

Another thing to work on, I guess. . . So TB, meet me at the Jacobsen Center? ;)


"By creating beauty out of nature, art calms and quietens it. All the arts, even those based on sounds, create silence." Levinas

"Love is watching someone die." DCfC

I've been sitting in the graduate student instructor offices (gsio) trying to research. . . well, what I was trying to research isn't as important. But I've been distracted by one of my fellow instructors talking to a student who is wondering why he got docked ten points in the "Ideas" section of the personal essay rubric. His argument: it's a personal essay and I should be able to write about whatever I want to write. Don't dock my ideas. Dock my organization, my voice, my word choice, my sentence fluency (which, by the way, no one really knows what that means). But not my ideas.

Fair enough. You gave me original ideas. But what did you do with those ideas? You can't write the paper once and hand it over--especially the personal essay. You have to push yourself beyond a narrative.

I'm too tired to continue, but here are my final thoughts:

"Five kids read it and couldn't come up with anything on the paper." That's because you didn't give them anything to work with.

Just because someone is an English major doesn't qualify them--to the level of your instructor--to tell you how good your paper is. Just because your roommate who is majoring in English read it, doesn't make it an A. It makes it a paper that an English major read. So there.

Monday, October 24, 2005

What Sarah Said (DCFC)

I keep confusing screen names when I log into different things. It's getting a little frustrating. Mostly because I want to be all names at all times. . . but I find that editorgirl is a little different from LadyLondon. To begin with, when I write LadyLondon I use caps. Just in case you missed it.

editorgirl was last year. She was me plus april, which expanded is me plus Miss K plus HMP plus Kapka plus aa plus oh!resolution plus (occasionally) wife of oh!resolution. She was the editor, the one in charge (until the infamous night of "Where the hell is eg?"), she was the one going on to great things. For those who don't know and don't want to go through the archives (this includes me), editorgirl was a name given me by the ubercool Kim Johnson, a professor of poetry and immense thinking at BYU.

LadyLondon appeared this summer, when it felt like editorgirl had disappeared. Rex asked me if I wanted to part of an online discussion board and desparate for some good discussion, I agreed, however hesitantly. In my head, LadyLondon was originally a more sophisticated, more stand-offish version of editorgirl. She was also less fun, more bookish. . . if that is possible. She still loved John Cusack and the 80s and poetry, but in a way that she could hide behind them to create a quirky identity.

I've spent a lot of time lately blogging about my identity in one way or another. And I'm not saying that I have everything figured out. Once that happens, I'll be insanely bored with life. I like mystery and puzzles, even when they come in the form of me. But I think editorgirl is back and LadyLondon is still around. . . anyone else feel the need to bust out a dialectic here? Sorry, the effects of 452. But the synthesis is what I'm in the process of creating. Fingers crossed, this synthesis (who will still go by editorgirl, LadyLondon, and occasionally, PepperGirl), is someone willing to be wrong sometimes. Someone who is willing to let people into her life--not just into her head via this blog.

It's something I'm working on. I'll let you know how it goes.

And if Duchess jumped off a cliff. . .

How You Are In Love

You take a while to fall in love with someone. Trust takes time.

In relationships, you tend to be a bit selfish.

You need your space and privacy. You don't like to be smothered.

You're secretly hoping your partner will change for you.

You stay in love for a long time, even if you aren't loved back. When you fall, you fall hard.

Hmmm. Not sure if I believe all this. Except the last one. That last one is too true. Actually, this is me. Dammit.

with love and squalor

Sister asked me a week, week-and-a-half ago if I would help put together the music for her reception. I agreed at the time because it seemed like the only thing I could help with. But now I'm realizing that our ideas of good music and good love songs are the two ends of a spectrum. At least, that's the argument I'm making. The truth is I don't want to give her my love songs.

On my list (right now):

"Brighter than Sunshine" Aqualung
I never understood before
I never knew what love was for
My heart was broke, my head was sore
What a feeling

Tied up in ancient history
I didnt believe in destiny
I look up you're standing next to me
What a feeling

"Someday You Will Be Loved" Death Cab for Cutie
I cannot pretend that I felt any regret
Cause each broken heart will eventually mend
As the blood runs red down the needle and thread
Someday you will be loved

You'll be loved you'll be loved
Like you never have known
The memories of me
Will seem more like bad dreams
Just a series of blurs
Like I never occurred
Someday you will be loved

"Be, Be Your Love" Rachel Yamagata
If I could take you away
Pretend I was queen
What would you say
Would you think I'm unreal
'Cause everybody's got their way I should feel

Everybody's talking how I, can't, can't be your love
But I want, want, want to be your love
Want to be your love, for real
Everybody's talking how I, can't, can't be your love
But I want, want, want to be your love
Want to be your love for real
Want to be your everything

"The Tension and the Terror" Straylight Run
And I try but I'm not convincing,
Your lips they pout and twist and,
I die trying just to keep myself from kissing you,
You take in everything with a certainty I envy
It's somehow all I need just keep me guessing please

"Fresh Feeling" Eels (courtesy of Kapka)
You don't have a clue,
what it is like
to be next to you.

I'm here to tell you,
that it is good,
that it is true.

Birds singing a song,
old paint is peeling,
this is that fresh
that fresh feeling.
Words can't be that strong,
my heart is realING,
this is that fresh,
that fresh feeling.

Okay, so maybe I was trying too hard to make a point. I'd have some Gershwin and Sinatra on there as well. But I'd also have some Bollywood, some Shins, some Eisley. Where Sister wants Rascal Flatts and co. (not all country, but. . . I don't know. I even like RF). Just not my style of "I like this song for the lyrics and the music" vs. "This is fun to kiss to."

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Old (Brides)Maid

Today I am feeling too guilty to function. Of course, when I think logically about it, I shouldn't be guilty. But, as always, I'm getting ahead of myself.

On Friday I spent the day at home studying (after I taught at 9:00), waiting for the internet people to finish our connection. I ran back to campus at 4:00 to pick up Sister and on the ride back to the house I promised (between her phone calls with Mother and Fiance) that I would help clean the house and the car this weekend. When we got back to the house, I was dizzy from a headache, so I decided to lie down (Master Fob, if that's wrong you can remind me of the rules next time I see you) for a minute. The minute lasted about forty and I woke up to LadyJane (a friend you will all meet in the near future) calling me to decide what time we were going to dinner before the English GSA movie night (yes, I'm such a losernerd). I agreed on the time and then realized I had about 15 minutes to pull myself together and go. So I get up and walk to the bathroom, which Sister is furiously cleaning. I apologize for falling asleep and guiltly say, "I told you I would clean the bathroom." Sister breaks her icy silence to tell me that I leave hair everywhere (it's definitely not her or our two other roommates. . . especially the really long brown hairs. . . ). I apologize again with Sister reprimanding me for never cleaning. I don't bother to explain--again--that I do clean, not that she cares, and when LadyJane comes I gratefully escape out the door, with Sister still shooting icerays at me. . . and now LadyJane.

Poor LadyJane had to listen to me try to explain my normally more-than-gracious Sister's issues with me, convince me to shut up, and then listen some more. I was worried about coming home to the same fight--when my family gets upset, we don't really talk. We just freeze everyone else out. But when I came home, Sister had left a day early to Bountiful with Fiance.

I went up to Bountiful the next morning to basically sit around and prompt my father to tell me that I'm not a terrible person or SuperBitch or whatever. I explained that I had cleaned the kitchen multiple times, etc. and that I wasn't dumping all maintenance matters onto Sister. He understood, but his idea is that if you patiently wait long enough, the freeze will end. He doesn't understand that it just makes the next freeze that much worse.

By the end of the day, Sister was talking to me again, mostly because Mom and LittleSister came back from New York. They had gone primarily to see Wizard. LittleSis was super-excited to show us what they had bought for us in New York--and, I admit, so were we. Presents are always good. First out comes Sister's gifts: two necklace-earring sets and a bracelet. I'm watching and hoping that there is another bracelet for me--it's one of the heavy carved wood bracelets I've been trying to find for months, but can never find one I love in Provo. They all watch Sister try on a pair of earrings and slip on the bracelet before pulling out my gifts: a pashmina and a scarf. Those of you who know me well are thinking "Perfect! Eg lives for and in pashminas." And normally it would be perfect, excpet neither of them are in colors that I'm wearing much right now. Instead, as Mom quickly points out, they are colors that match my bridesmaid skirt.

I don't really know how to follow that. The only thing that really comes to mind is "Damn" over and over again. But that really doesn't say anything. My dad pointed out to me this weekend that my life is going to be very different from Sister's or, for that matter, Mom's. This isn't really coherent with what I've just been writing, but I need to get it out of my head and onto the screen. I don't want my life to be like my mom's or Sister's--not that there is anything wrong with their lives. Mine just seems to be heading in a very different direction. I can see myself with my PhD and my tenure track position and my publications and my conferences. But I don't see myself--or want to see myself--as an old maid. During my rather distracted dinner with LadyJane I tried to explain to her this feeling I have that the guy I have my eye on is too good for me. But in reality, there's always the suspicion that a guy isn't good enough for me. (This isn't the case with current guy. Current guy is amazing on about a million different levels and if I knew how to approach him, I would.) But that sounds wrong. It's the suspicion that my life is supposed to be a certain way and I need to find someone whose life is supposed to parallel mine, who is wanting the same things or similar things. And it's becoming harder and harder to believe I'll find someone like that--especially since it seems that men who are after the same things I'm after are also after a someone more like Sister.

Friday, October 21, 2005

best class ever

I'm not sure what happened today, but class was awesome. And it was only one part me. Actually, it was a big part me, and I will now explain that statement.

I've blogged before about the roles we play, and specifically about the roles I play. I act a certain way around certain people. I put on different personas, attitudes, vocabularies, etc. I talk about different parts of my life with different people--and feel awkward and guilty when I cross the boundaries I've set up. I am never really myself because I am never really completely me. This was part of the "Me in Monogamy" post. Showing all of me lets a person see, well, all of me and makes me vulnerable to the "slings and arrows of outrageous fortune" (apologies if I misquoted).

But today in class--I was still the teacher, but it was me being the teacher, if that makes sense. And if it doesn't, I don't know how else to say it.

We talked about summary vs. analysis. I showed a clip from the "Mormon" Pride and Prejudice (when Elizabeth throws the hymnal at Collins) and then summarized it for the class. I pointed out that I didn't need to tell them what had happened because they had watched it themselves. So what should you tell people/your reader about the text? And they started to analyze the clip--the music, the camera angles, the details, etc. They did an excellent job. But what came next was even better. I had the desk speech from DPS, which made me excited just to be watching it, which I told the students. And then we watched it. I told them I wasn't going to summarize it again--they were spared that pain. And I also told them I had been thinking about saying "In addition to your essays I want to compose a poem of your own" but I didn't. What I did do was play the clip again. Students could--and did--call "Stop" when something happened they wanted to analyze. And the whole class got into the discussion. It was fantastic. I was so into it that I was surprised and sad when the bell rang.

Other things happened at the beginning of class, and during class, that allowed me to be me. I wish I could explain it better. No, that would take to long. Let me summarize.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

add vice

Yes, I'm supposed to be grading papers right now.

Yes, I have given one 'A.'

Yes, I have given two 'C's.

Yes, I've only graded three papers thus far.

Yes, I don't want to grade anymore.

Yes, I'm being clever.

Yes, I think he's a pompous ass.

Yes, I know that there's nothing I can do.

Yes, I known you know that I know that there's nothing I can do.

Yes, I'm thinking about someone new (who, for the record, is not the pompous ass or a pompous ass).

Yes, I know that it won't happen.

Yes, I know that it never happens.

Yes, I know that there wasn't a clear antecedent.

Yes, I know that despite there being no clear antecedent you still knew what "it" was referring to.

Not your normal chick

My role models in life: Beatrice (and Benedick) from Much Ado about Nothing. Valancy from The Blue Castle. Buddy from Franny and Zooey. Watts from Some Kind of Wonderful. The girl from "Short Skirt, Long Jacket."

Okay, so they're all fictional, but maybe you get the idea. I like attitude. I like quirkiness. I like people who defy gravity. . . I mean, convention. So when my friend reads me the beginning of his story and the wife of the main character seems like a ditz to me, I want to give her a bit of that attitude and, well, feminist-ness.

So I'm not your normal chick. I like that about myself. I like that I'm not actively searching for validation via men. Not that other girls are. But they are. I like that I know my limitations--and I ignore them. I like that I feel sexy with or without a man eyeing me. But there's another element to these characters who I listed as role models. They all, well, maybe not SSLJ girl, but the others aren't just a little odd and have more than a little attitude--they observe, they critique, they moderate. They are the story tellers. Some of them are the puppetmasters. Some simply have really, really great lines. I'd be happy with that.

I am happy with that.

I'm the Me in Monogamy

I've put up walls. I know this. In my mind, transparency is an evil to be avoided at all costs. And so I have. Avoided it at all costs, that is.

Part of it is that I like being the eccentric, mysterious intellectual. I can be a bit quirky, be addicted to my poetry and listen to the Shins and Death Cab and wear scarves. And I am this person. But the other part. . .

Part of it is that I'm terrified of getting hurt. Take down the walls, be a bit vulnerable, and people can leave you, ignore you, scratch you, beat you, etc. It's a very risky situation. So you (I when I say "you," I mean "I" or "me") put up walls. You avoid people situations. You become a recluse.

The thing is, I'm not that person. I'm not a recluse. I don't want to be alone. It's not just a romantic sense. I'm not sure how it happened, but somehow I've been presenting myself as shy, reticent, withdrawn, when that couldn't be further from who I am. Well, maybe it's a little bit of who I am when first met. But have more than enough personality and opinions.

Tonight I was more me than I have been lately. It was nice.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

(Maybe) the final post about eg's hair

In my contemporary lit theory class today, we were discussing "violence against the Other through the use of reductive labels"--the idea being that by applying a word to a person, you are reducing their ability to remove or disassociate himself/herself from that label. My professor used the example of "hispanic," but I had the following passage running through my head:

Common American stereotypes dictate that blond-haired people are less intelligent ("dumb blonde"), more fun loving, sexier, and more attractive. Brown-haired people are described sometimes as uninspiring, average and even "mousy." Redheads are vibrant, energetic, sometimes bold and even bossy. Black-haired Caucasians are wild and exotic or morbid. (Wissner-Gross, Elizabeth. Unbiased: Editing in a Diverse Society. 126.)

Lately I've been described as blonde, brown-haired, and red-haired. (I just threw the black-haired description in because I enjoyed the "exotic or morbid" moment.) Considering this, I'm just going to accept my hair as an attempt to escape stereotypes. Because despite the ambiguous color, my hair is fabulous. It's one of my favorite things about me. This "what color is my hair" is just another query in my recent inability to maintain my definition of myself. But all that is going to change. Tomorrow.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Soundtrack for a Movie

I started to ache when I started to think of you.
Wondering how long it would take before I step into something new.
There's so much I can fake.
There's only so much that I can prove.
Well, do it in a minute,
I could go play the fool for you.

New idea for a blog: my commentary interspersed with the lyrics of a song. This probably won't happen often, but tonight it will. As if you needed an explanation.

I like the idea of playing the fool for someone. . . at least, Shakespeare's fool. I've always been overly fond of Feste in Twelfth Night. He knows. He's there, and he knows. Everything. I want to be that person for someone. Someone who understands, but still makes you smile.

Lights, camera, action.
I think I'm going for it this time.
There's something you should listen to.
Could I take you for a car ride?
This is the soundtrack for our movie.
Would you tell me when we get to the best part?
I'll play it for you.
Oh no, I think I've lost this one.
Can we try again?

I've been meaning to write a post along with this song for a while. . . not quite in this way, but when I pulled up the lyrics I couldn't decide what to cut. But I didn't want miles of text and then more miles of text. I know not many love me enough to read to the end, but maybe there's a cool idea in here somewhere.

My life as a movie. The funny part is, right now I'm in the depressing montage scene, where they show you multiple crummy days with only a few seconds of anything really happening. And then things will pick up. I'll meet someone. He'll meet me. And then it will either be a Pretty in Pink or a Some Kind of Wonderful ending. Note: in PiP, I'd be Duckie. In SKoW, I'm Watts.

Well I'm a wreck.
I really can't explain it but I,
I hear the music when I look at you.
Orchestrating the song to accommodate the moment.
Well, I'm so in love with you.

I'm putting together a playlist to "accommodate the moment." This song is, of course, there. And some Death Cab, in honor of my missionary brother. Well, that and I'm currently listening to "I Will Follow You into the Dark" on repeat. I'm not sure why I'm so addicted.

Are you looking for an answer?
Because I could really use a friend tonight.
We can make this last forever.
We don't have to fear the sunlight.

Well I'm a wreck.
I really can't explain it but I,
I hear the music when I look at you.
Orchestrating the song to accommodate the moment.
Well, I'm so in love with...

Things eg has been told recently:
1. eg's hair is blonde and she should quit blogging about it.
2. eg worries too much.
3. eg needs to quit apologizing.
4. eg just actually might be a people person. . . if she ever met people.
5. eg blogs too damn much and needs to slow down. One blog every other week would be enough for everyone, thank you.
6. eg should do her homework.
7. eg should stop making lists.
8. eg can be replaced.
9. eg is not pretty.
10. eg needs to be assertive. and loud. loud and assertive.

I'll take a chance and steal away this movie moment.
I'm in deep whenever I'm with you.
I'm directing the scene that has you and me forever.
We'll I'm so in love with...

Guess what? I am so in love with you. Pity you don't know who you are.

Dog tags and gift certificates

I already attempted to blog this once and something went wrong, as something often tends to do. But I feel the need to share this diatribe. And, let's be honest, bury last night's rather confessional post.

So my little sister M is quite a reader. As in a terrifying devours everything in sight, especially if it has to do with princesses, dogs, or fairy tales, reader. Did I mention she's my favorite sibling?

Anyway, last spring I gave her Goose Girl by Shannon Hale. Hale is an LDS writer and had won an award for GG at the AML conference. Since then M has 1) continued to nag me to read GG and 2) become a big fan of Shannon Hale, who just happens to be coming to the English reading series. Being the super-cool older sister that I am, I thought it would be fun to bring M down to Provo that day to go to the reading and get her books signed. I even offered lunch and the new Shannon Hale book that M has yet to own. Bring out the trumpets, processional, etc. for best sister of the year.

There's just one snag. M was ecstatic about this idea until. . . well, I couldn't figure it out for a few weeks. I'd bring it up and she'd get quiet and start talking about dogs or her best friends or her math assignment--sometimes all three. Finally she explained to me last night that she realized she would have to miss school. I told her she could probably stand to miss one day of fifth grade, that it wouldn't effect her ability to get into a good college, etc., but she wasn't buying it. A little more prodding and she told me that her school has a rewards system this year for perfect attendance. Each month of perfect attendance earns you a dog tag. At the end of the year, there are rewards for those students who earned the most dog tags/went the whole year without missing a day of school.

I know attendance is important. I have an attendance policy in my class (I suck at enforcing it, but don't tell my students). I respect and adhere to attendance policies my professors have outlined. But one day? For your favorite author? And your supercool big sister? Give me a break. Let them live.

Sunday, October 16, 2005


My favorite song tonight. . .

I am debating. . .

I'm not sure what to write.

If Heaven and Hell decide
that they're both satisfied
illuminate the "No"s on their vacancy signs
("I Will Follow You into the Dark" DCFC)

There are a dozen really good posts swimming around my head right now. I just don't know where to start. Perhaps with the image of a back. . . I've become minorly obsessed with backs lately. The not-quite rectangle, the flat expanse, the rise of shoulder blades where if you ever had wings, that's where they'd connect. It's not a dangerous obsession. I'm not going around checking out people's backs; I'm just suddenly aware of their geography. Except I've been working on a poem that compares the back to the sky. The night sky with stars. And the myths inherent in them.

I'm too scared to let my guard down. Because if you let your guard down, you can get hurt. It's like a song on repeat in my head. Someone, who I hope won't mind if I refer to him as a good friend, pointed out that I have the habit of offering a piece of personal information and then retreating, changing the subject, backing off, etc. (My words not his). He said it was endearing, but I have a feeling endearing meant maddening. But I'm reaching the point where I need to let my guard down or it's going to suffocate me. And I think I'm starting to with the aforementioned friend, but I worry too much, analyze too much, and then panic and shut down.

I'm sorry if reading this blog feels as if you are reading a catalogue of neuroses. (That's another problem. I apologize too much.) I'm sorry I'm sorry I'm sorry I'm sorry. For everything. For nothing. For being 22 and acting older. For being 22 and acting younger. For not knowing what color my hair is. For caring what color my hair is. For thinking about guys. For not thinking about guys. For being me. For not being me. For not knowing who "me" is. For knowing who only a part of "me" is and thinking that if you met her, you'd never speak to me again. For only letting you know a facade. For not having a good facade. For. . . For. . . For. . .

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Cat lady is one word away from cat woman

I love having crazy brilliant (or brilliant, crazy) friends who say things like this to me. This one is courtesy of Kapka. (No comment on whether she is crazy brilliant or brilliant, crazy).

For several weekends my sister L has been going up north with her fiance for wedding planning and bonding time with my mother. . . those are actually the same thing. Which leaves me alone in a very big house. I've tried a few strategies--going to movies, sampling every Provo/Orem fast food joint's fare, going to the library, bookstore, grocery store--but mostly I sit in my house, with the blinds drawn, reading/studying/grading. I'm not going to lie; it's a pretty lonely/depressing existence some weekends. And I'm not really a round-up-the-gang-for-some-good-times kind of girl. So I'll do something with friends Friday night, do the aforementioned on Saturday day, which usually runs into Saturday night, and then go to church by myself on Sunday. The past few weekends have ended with me curled up on my bed around 8:00 on Saturday, clothes and lights still on, waiting for 10:00 to come so that I don't feel like a total idiot for going to bed. Then L comes home on Sunday and I pretend like the weekend was fine.

The scary part (and Kapka's quote) comes from a discussion with my father today. L and fiance will move into the basement after they get married and while I am assuming that L will continue driving to campus with me, that's about it for regular interaction (I hope). I was hoping one of my friends would be able to move into L's room, but friend is worried about selling her contract and insulting her current roommates. Which I understand. But I've been panicked about having a roommate who can't stand me and vice versa. It's happened in the past. Anyway, conversation with father today ended with him saying that I can find a roommate when I want and I don't have to find one by January. Which does take some stress away. But I don't want to be alone. I'm beginning to be terrified of being alone. Another friend's solution was to get married in January or at least by the end of next semester too, but seeing as how I don't date, that's not going to happen. So my options are to find a roommate, find new drugs that make me think I'm not alone, or get some cats. I'm allergic to cats.

Friday, October 14, 2005


I decided on the title for this post before I decided what this post would be about. Actually, I still don't know what this post will be about. The life and times of PepperGirl, possibly. Or just an itemized list of what I'm thinking right now. Hurray for multitasking.

1. I know everyone is tired of hearing about it, but the identity crisis based on hair color continues with someone asking me yesterday after class "Eg, what color is your hair anyway?" My students continued the thread today with one of them commenting, "Don't worry, Eg. We know you're a blonde at heart." Apparently I'm ambiguous at heart. . . and at the roots.

2. I brought doughnuts to my students today. Doughnuts and chocolate milke (and 1% which no one touched). Is it pretentious to spell it "doughnuts"? Oh well. I am pretentious. Just because I like the word "pretentious." And the words "quixotic" and "hyperbolic." But I was talking about doughnuts and how I brought them to my students and how if anyone asked I said it was a lesson on being on time--those who got there first got first choice of a wide variety of doughnuts--but really it was because I have good students who are attentive and do their homework and are just fun people to spend three hours with each week, plus at least 22 more hours thinking about (22 hours includes office hours, 610, grading, class prep, and those creepy dreams where I show up to class prepared but then realize that it's a massive section of Biology 100).

3. In five minutes I'm going to stop typing to go see Trapped by the Mormons with about two dozen people who I adore. And that was an example of hyperbole, class.

4. Today was another great day for the English reading series. Brian Doyle, an essayist and apparent genius, read. I was toying with the idea of not going, but JeffT convinced me and I'm glad I went. His prose was like poetry. . . do the two have to be exclusive?. . . but he also regards writing as prayer, a religious act. Which is a rarity in writers I think. I bought his book and began reading it. I'm startled every time there is a profession of faith. Startled and pleased. It also made me think about my resistance to writing prose, particularly the personal essay I still owe Gideon from spring. I never feel like myself when I'm writing in that voice. . . it's kind of a "oh, this is me toned down so I don't scare my nonexistent reader." Reading Doyle makes me wonder if I can find a balance between my polished academic writing and my confessional-narrative-don't-know-the-right-word poetry. I'm actually kind of excited to find out. Maybe I'll start by posting some things here. Warning, though, they'll most likely be about London. I heart London. I don't think I've ever hearted anything before, but it seems appropriate here.

The clock has struck 6:00. I'm off. And yes, the movie doesn't start until 7:00. But the doors open at 6:30 and I'm anal about this kind of thing. Consider it endearing.

Thursday, October 13, 2005


He would tell me
"When there is shadow,
there has to be light"
then curve and pinch his
fingers together, two fingers
in the air flashing a peace sign.
The lights out, he would
turn on a lamp
and together we'd watch the rabbit
hop away.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

"Serious" writer

Tonight was an inscape night, which requires me to make a fool of myself for at least fifteen minutes as we talk about general information. Tonight's agenda was as follows:

1. Where the hell is Mary?
2. Submission forms
3. Party next week
4. Repeat everything I just said for the dozen people who came in late, including Mary.
5. Brainstorm some ideas for advertising

We hit a snag with #5. No one had any ideas. I was pretty tired and pretty annoyed that no one wanted to offer any ideas. . . or even say something. Say anything. Say Anything. John Cusack. "I gave her my heart and she gave me a. . ." Sorry. Back on task.

Someone mentioned funny random sayings, like "Life is futile." But no one was feeling random. So I had the staff do a rushwrite on their life philosophies. I got some pretty funny/random stuff. But one guy didn't want to do it. He was being ornery about it. And not just silently refusing. No, he was vocalizing how ridiculous it all was.

Later, after I came up with some posters from the rushwrites and had printed them to the room where OrneryGuy was working, I overheard him commenting on the posters. "Creative writers are too silly. They need to be serious." Maybe he was just making a general statement, but he's had this attitude ever since he joined staff. He doesn't like the way we run things; he doesn't like the way I run things. He has this holier-than-eg attitude--his ideas are much better, his poetry is much more profound, he can't comment on that because he's read the poem before.

Okay, looking at that maybe I'm overreacting. But it's hard enough for me to take charge of my peers and have things run smoothly without OrneryGuy challenging me at every turn. It makes me miss HMP, who would flip you off but then actually contribute. Or Matt, my favorite inscaper ever, who was flat out smarter than I was, but who was still respectful.

And I am a "serious" writer. Maybe none of it shows up here. Maybe I act a little bit crazy during inscape. Maybe I do eat too much candy. But at least I share.

AND if creative writers were all like OrneryGuy, we'd be a dying breed. Because we'd go around depressing everybody. And no one would marry us. And we can't marry each other because. . . why can't we marry each other? Maybe we should. Who wants dibs on OrneryGuy?

All writed out: DC Review

I'd like to write something really beautiful and profound here, but I'm all writed out at the moment. I just wrote a Divine Comedy review. I'm bracing myself for the feedback at, but I thought I'd share it with you. Feel free to agree or disagree. Or just apathy. Apathy is good.

Disclaimer: I wrote this before reading everyone else’s comments, so my apologies if I overlap/step on toes/whatever.

Divine Comedy review

The beginning of a new school year means new Divine Comedy members, but this year it seemed like almost an entire new cast, with only four returning cast members—and one of those, Taylor, has less than a year’s credit to her name. It was with nervous anticipation—okay, actually wild and crazy excitement—that the crowds waited outside 151 TNRB on October 7 and 8, 2005 to see Divine Comedy: The Next Generation.

For those of us who have followed DC through the years, we weren’t disappointed. DC offered up a brilliant show with a cast to match. Perhaps the best surprises of the night were Mary and Taylor, two returning cast members who have matured as performers. Both had their scene-stealing moments: Mary with her “Communist Rhetoric” and Taylor as Charly in “Charly and the Chocolate Factory.”

Each of the new cast members brought their own style and talent to the show, creating a new dynamic for DC. It was refreshing to see the “straight man” role that was often Peyton’s, being filled by Hillary. That being said, I would like to see Hillary a bit—what’s the word?—louder at times. Trevor seems to have a darker sensibility that may or may not play well for date-happy DC goers. Jono was entertaining to watch in “Bourne EFY” and as one half of the Oompa-Loompa singing sensation. Paul’s “Spiritual Crocodile Hunters” was a good idea, but I would have liked to see the sketch taken a step further—I’m also excited to see what else Paul can do on stage. Matt is another new member I’d like to see take on more of a central role in some sketches—he was a strong, consistent supporting member, but other than his well-delivered “Creamery Can” solo, didn’t seem to be used as much. Lisa had a lot of energy the whole night, which was impressive since I was at the 10:00 on Friday—I wonder if she was able to keep it up through the Saturday shows. Lisa, don’t burn out on us. It’s okay to take it down a notch sometimes. Oh, and “Boys Will Do It for You” was stuck in my head all weekend. I hope we get an encore performance in December’s show.

I’ve been saving Will and Joel as a nice little segue into talking about the actual sketches. “Freshman in the Night” was a great opener, reminiscent of “I Will Be Your Missionary,” with Will ready to romance all of BYU and then some. Will is great in these roles. . . but I’ve seen him do more (remember “Pantalones”?). I hope we get to see how versatile Will is in comedic acting, rather than just the ultimate Latin lover.

One thought about “Freshman in the Night”: I took issue with one line—“I was just ten feet away, stalking your girlfriend like she was prey.” I know this is an easy laugh at BYU, but should it be? RMs after freshman is a common theme of DC sketches, but “stalking like prey” isn’t something we should be laughing at. It’s not that I’m thinking “Oh, stalking is bad.” It’s the mentality. While I think DC can provide strong social commentary, I don’t think this song succeeded. It was actually kind of creepy.

The easiest thing to compliment Joel on would be his Willy Wonka—which was brilliant. But he was a strong performer throughout the show, with my favorite being “And?” and the bus stop sketch. It’s nice to see such a strong performer in a supporting role, and providing just enough to the sketch to really make Mary and Will’s performance entertaining.

I’m going to skip over “Spiritual Crocodile Hunters” (see comments on Paul) and “Western Family Brand” (which I didn’t find that funny except for the nod to West Side Story), and quickly look at “Conference Protestors.” This was hilarious. Hillary was excellent, and the sketch went just far enough without crossing the line. I particularly enjoyed the “I’m not touching you” conclusion. This is what I meant when I said DC can provide strong and important social commentary.

I enjoyed “So You Think You Can Street Fight”—particularly the judge’s comments and the cat fight. Lisa was excellent as the host. Paul and the dog were funny and just unnerving enough. This was one of a few sketches, however, that seemed to missing a punchline. I almost wish the lights had gone down on Will’s final pose—an image that will never leave my mind. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing.

“Elementary, My Dear Mr. Teacherson” was classic. I’m hoping this is a character we’ll get to see Trevor play again. And Will as a crybaby—Matt escorting him out—were they holding hands? Either way, classic. I already said that.

I’m looking at the list and realizing I still have a ways to go and I doubt anyone is still with this review. No matter. “Signs,” “BYU Buildings,” and “Communist Rhetoric” were some of my favorite Divine Comedy sketches ever. I think everyone knows why, but if you’d like me to explicate, say “aye.” “Road Trip” and “Sweet Pants” were both good strong, entertaining offerings (loved the uPod). “Mr. Nintendo”. . . well, I’m not a video game enthusiast. My sister’s boyfriend had to explain that one to me. But it did seem to go too far with the stereotype.

The parody was well done. Very well done. Perhaps one of my favorite to date. I already acknowledged that Joel as Wonka was brilliant, but it wasn’t just that. The sketch was well written and integrated BYU culture with the mood and themes of the movie. I was glad to see some of the elements of “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” pulled in as well. And when Mary and Jono came out in full-Oompa Loompa attire—I have never laughed so hard. Ever. In my life.

All in all, an excellent show. I’m looking forward to November. Thank you, Divine Comedy.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

I found fatal flaw in the logic of love

Good morning everyone. Just as a warning, I'm on heavy pain medication. But, as my friend says, "It's fun to see eg a little loopy." Make that a lot.

I didn't sleep last night, courtesy of my bad shoulder. You didn't know I had a bad shoulder, did you? It's one that mouths off a lot and is basically cranky all the time. Last night it got in a fight with my back, which spread to my arms and legs. After a night of scrambling to find positions that would shut at least a few of my body parts, I admitted defeat and got up, got ready.

Bad Shoulder kept it up this morning as I taught my class, so I finally decided to go home and medicate. The problem is, said medication makes me 1) loopy and 2) sleepy. So I am now even more out of it that usual. Which means I won't make my point very well at all.

The point, or point of conversation if you will, is transparency. How much should you relate to a person you are romantically involved with? How much should be obvious to you? And is it a bad thing if you have to do some work to get to a point of equality in a relationship?

End thought.

Gone for Good

I found a fatal flaw in the logic of love.

Hi friends. I'm assuming that you are all my friends because you are here and you care about my life and existence and stuff. Or you just randomly wound up here. In which case, there are no naked women here. Just keep pressing that "next blog" button.

I've had a rollercoaster day. . . if rollercoasters just stayed down all of the time. No details. I tried that already and it became a diatribe with a language problem many times over. But I tried to solve it. I tried to solve it by going to Vermillion Skies to get a Dr. Pepper creamosa. And no, I don't know exactly what that is. A drink with Dr. Pepper and whipped topping and. . . something. Ice.

Anyway, I went there after picking up a video for tomorrow's class and Red (the girl who owns/runs the place) told me that they're closing down. Friday will be their last day. The place flooded and the rent is too high and. . . something.

So I stood there, thinking about HMP and K and Kapka and me sitting in uncomfortable chairs at a wobbly table, even though there were couches for the taking, because it was more academic or something. Getting up to point out details in the artwork, sitting back down to read a poem. HMP starting a tab. K using his tab. The damn gummy worms. And I kept wishing that it was last year all over again. I know I romanticize it too much. Life was a downhill rollercoaster then too. But still, there was something there. At the very least there was something in me that's gone now. I feel empty. Empty and alone.

I snapped out of my thoughts and ordered my Dr. Pepper creamosa. The soda machine was down--no Dr. Pepper. She suggested a hazlenut instead. I had this vague memory tugging the back of my mind. . . he tried it. . . I don't think he liked it.

I got the hazlenut. It's not bad.

And I left a tip.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Objectify Me, or Would You Like Fries with That?

The ward menu came out today. And when I say "menu," I mean "menu." In addition to the title actually being "Ward Menu," those clever souls on the Welcoming Committee, who are apparently in charge of putting it together, went through and assigned each ward member a menu item. They took it a step farther by making each guy in the ward an entree or side dish and each girl a dessert. As if the dating mentality wasn't off-putting enough. Most men are now some meat dish, while the girls range from "creme brulee" to "popsicle." (Except for my sister and me. We somehow lucked out with salt and pepper, respectively.) The worst part is this gut feeling that the bishop approved the damn thing.

I just feel really bad for the guy who will forever be known as "Spam."

Orange piggy bank

Not that there's any money in it.

I'm not sure why I'm writing again. Probably just to clear my mind before I crash for the night, but I keep having this thought and I'm not sure if I want opinions or validations or someone to just tell me to shut up. Probably the last option's a good idea.

I've always maintained that I don't want someone who is on the same career track I'm on. Those of you thinking "professor, editor, writer, etc." might assume that this is because I won't be making any money. I actually don't care about the money; I care about the competition. Let me rephrase that: I cared about the competition.

Lately, though, I've realized that those roles I just listed, while not completely me, are a big part of me. When I talk to people, I want to talk about what I'm passionate about, and I'm passionate about poetry, teaching, etc. There are other passions, but I'm starting to wonder if I could date someone who was on the other side of the interest spectrum, let alone marry them.

Just FYI, my thought process leading up to this excess of blogging was realizing that many of my literary-minded friends have left me or will be leaving me and wondering how I can live without them and their constant input into my far too solitary existence.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

In the eye of the beholder

I've been listening to Ani Difranco's "Not a Pretty Girl" on repeat. When the song isn't actually playing, it's running through my head.

I am not a pretty girl
that is not what I do.
I ain't no damsel in distress
And I don't need to be rescued.
So put me down, punk.
Wouldn't you prefer a maiden fair?
Isn't there a kitten
stuck up a tree somewhere?

I am not an angry girl
but it seems like I've got everyone fooled.

I'll spare you the rest of the song. If you want the rest, google it.

So why am I intently listening to a song my friend would place squarely in the center of "Angry Girl Music of the Indie-Rock Persuasion" (name the movie)? Some comments over the past few weeks have left me reeling, questioning myself, etc., and I've been trying to find an appropriate way to deal with them, now that movies and eating are out (although I have tried both, Breakfast Club and Chinese food to be specific). "Not a Pretty Girl" returns me to freshman year, but it also seems an accurate theme song right now (the only better one is "Celibate Life" by the Shins).

After the conversation that broke editorgirl's sanity yesterday, I spent most of the day bouncing back and forth between feeling worthless and downright sexy. By the end of the evening (which came at 3:15 a.m.), I was tired, confused, but leaning toward sexy. I think I'll stay there, if you don't mind.

That was a very long and not very coherent intro to what I wanted to post about, but I'm going to keep it and keep typing. Today has prompted more thinking on the subject. (Did I tell you what the subject was? Explanation: sitting in on a conversation about what makes women beautiful and then several comments directed towards my physical appearance. Everyone up to speed? Good.) And I've decided something: I'm beautiful. And what's more, I'm going to tell you why.

1. Physically (since most discussion of beauty tends to begin on this level), I like my eyes (my favorite feature), my lips (I once asked a friend for a compliment--it was one of those days--and his response was "Your have lips that would be nice to kiss." And I do.), my hair, my height, and yes, my body. I know it's pudgy in some places, but I'm okay with that. It does what it needs to do. And someday I just know that the Renaissance ideal of beauty will replace our mentality of stick-thin, tiny women being beautiful. And even if that doesn't happen, who cares?

2. Maybe I come across as the depressed, quiet, shy, whatever girl when first met. But give it some time. I am entertaining, witty, cultured, etc.

3. I am not a domestic goddess. I never will be. But I can cook, bake, and I am a damn fine hostess.

4. While on the subject of godesses, I am an academic goddess. At least in my field.

5. I am a loyal friend. Try me.

Apparently I have a healthy self-image. But I'm not going to apologize tonight. Sometimes you just have to remind yourself that you are a pretty amazing person. And I am.

Once, twice, three times a bridesmaid

I have been a bridesmaid exactly two-and-a-half times.

1. August 2002. My cousin had four bridesmaids: the groom's sister, two high school friends, and me. We were each told to find a dress in one of her colors, lavendar or light blue. After some searching, I found a dress that I liked well enough to shell out the money for. I had it on hold at the store, pending my mother's approval, when I talked to my aunt, the mother of the bride. She had been at the same store in a different city, found the same dress, and bought it. For herself. At least I didn't have to deal with the store's no return policy.

2. August 2002, a few weeks later. My [college] best friend's wedding, eight bridesmaids. Not even going to try to list off the relations. Middle of August, outdoors, summer, and we were all in floor-length, three-quarter-sleeved deep red dresses. I referred to it as the blood bath. It was more that a little overdramatic.

1/2. December 2003. My [high school] best friend's wedding. This one only counts as a half because I didn't know I was a bridesmaid. I went to the dinner the night before in SLC, but then I had to work the next day. I arrived at the reception, wearing a button-down shirt and khakis, only to be met by a slightly frantic sister-of-the-bride asking where I had been all day. When I told her I had had to work, she nodded and said, "Well, your bouquet is over there and we'll just have to get you into some pictures later." My friend had forgotten to mention that I was part of the wedding party.

So thus far I have narrowly avoided that classic saying, "Three times a bridesmaid, never a bride." Now I'm wondering if it applies if you manage to go over. Yep, that's right. This winter I get to prance around in a dress and high heels for bridesmaid appearance #3. . . and-a-half. The bride is my 19-year-old sister. Oy.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Because it must be said

This was going to be titled "Ode to A. Allen," but poetry will not be attempted. But it must be said that Allen is one amazing man. Irritating at times, yes, but amazing is the more accurate word. I suppose you could substitute "brilliant," but I'm still going with amazing. It seems to cover more territory, and not just in syllables.

I was going to give a specific list, but I'll just say this: Amazing. Amazing poetry. Amazing attitude. Amazing mindset, lifestyle, hair, smile, sense of humor, sense of self, sense of when to stop using sense. Without him, there would be no ORCA. There would be no drive. And there would be no one to throw his hat off the top of the JFSB to me. Just wish I could have caught it. (For the record, it was the wind's fault.)

Thursday, October 06, 2005

I've got my happy face on

I decided that after all the angsty posts, I should write something happy.

I'm thinking.

Actually, I'm thinking that happy is not a word that readily applies to me, ever. Content, yes. Intense, passionate, articulate. . . for me, all these things equate to my somewhat warped idea of happiness.

And now, things that have made me content/intense/passionate/articulate/etc. today:

1. Excellent class today. I used multiple versions of "Rainbow Connection" (Kermit the Frog and Me First and the Gimmee Gimmees), "Such Great Heights" (Postal Service and Iron&Wine), and "Baby One More Time" (Fountains of Wayne, Bowling for Soup, and Chad Michael Murray) to discuss audience and message and the good ol' rhetorical triangle.

2. Talked with Anna. Our offices are right next to each other and we have the same office hour and since none of our students ever come to our office hours, we chat. Oh do we chat. Okay, mostly I talk and Anna kindly listens.

3. Plicka found my blog. This blog. Yes, the great Plicka has found and read my blog. He now knows just how angsty I am. I'm oddly okay with this. And now I'm going to set up a link to his. Ha!

4. I just used an exclamation point.

5. I spent two hours yesterday talking to Hickman about my thesis. I actually feel like I have a valid direction. I then spent one hour yesterday in the library hunting down books on aestheticism. You heard me. Aestheticism. (Good job for K's blog. Wouldn't know how to spell the word without her.) And then, when I was in class but not paying attention, exactly what I want to focus on came into, well, focus. And the best part is, I know I can do it. And it will be brilliant.

6. Yesterday, when talking to the amazing Hickman (last name, not a nickname), another professor dropped in. . . to sing. He just busted out with some Billy Joel-esque song. It was amazing. And then when he paused for breath, Hickman asked him how he was. "I'm cute and cuddly," he replied, then geared up for the finale. I haven't laughed that hard since. . .

7. Just read Tolkien Boy's latest blog to sister. She actually told her boyfriend that she had to hang up because she was so into the blog.

8. Still reeling (in a good sense) from the satisfaction of having direction. Am going to go explore the subject on JSTOR.

9. Listening to my lastest playlist: emotional angst. Two hours of relationship-based music. Am working to organize it and then distribute to all my friends-in-angst. Because I like you. (Yeah, I like you. And I feel so Bohemian like you. Come on, name the band.)

Too picky to be specific

I've been wanting to write since about 5:00 this afternoon, but I haven't let myself. Now I realize that I'd better write or I'll never sleep.

I had a brilliant day until about 4:30 when my poetry workshop class started. For some reason I can't seem to function in there. Maybe it's because I'm too bitchy for the environment. Maybe it's because I'm clinging to all my silly student-poet beliefs. Maybe I just don't belong there. I always come away frustrated. Very frustrated. More with myself than with the class.

So after a disastrous reading of my ballad (which I had to write), I was spinning into a pretty heavy anxiety attack. One of my good friends was sitting next to me. I don't know why he did what he did, but he reached out and took my hand. For some reason, that calmed me down to the point that I could stop the attack from getting any worse.

I know that touch was about friendship. . . don't worry, friend, I'm not going to complicate things by falling in love with you. . . but it made me realize how much I miss human touch. I'm not a touchy person--I actually react rather violently if I'm touched without some prior indication (e.g., someone holding their arms out for a hug). No one has held me since. . . well, I was 19 and it was Christmas.

I recently had a conversation with a friend about "what I want" as far as a relationship goes right now. I was sufficiently vague and selfish, with the justification that "I'm too picky to be specific." Which is true. But if you asked me to give you the list right now. . . I'd still be too picky to be specific, but right now I just want someone to hold me.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

A is for Avoidance

I've had a lot of words and ideas applied to me since, well, forever. But avoidance was a new one yesterday. I've been mulling it over in my little mind since then, identifying and analyzing where and when and how I avoid things. Over 24 hours (I didn't sleep much last night) has resulted in the following conclusion: hair. Or, as it often presents itself in my life, Hair.

Growing up I had really long, really blonde hair. If you want to see pictures, feel free to stop by. They're not hard to find. Everyone loved my hair: long, blonde, thick, curled well, etc. For as long as I can remember, I've heard about how wonderful my hair was. I even remember writing up a "Things I Like About Myself" poster in second grade that was primarily about my hair.

My boyfriends loved my hair too. I think if I concentrate hard enough, I can remember a hand resting between my shoulder blades, playing with the ends of my hair. Doesn't matter who the hand is connected to, the hair is the important thing. Somehow my hair got caught up in my idea of what was beautiful about myself.

So why did I cut my hair? I got burned. I'm still smoking from it. The day before I cut my hair short, it was my best friend's wedding--I was one of eight bridesmaids. Somehow during the day I earned the name "Bridesmaid Barbie" because of my hair. That was annoying, but I snapped when ex-boyfriend showed up with his new girlfriend and dragged up everything I had buried in the past six months. I didn't want to feel that way ever again--still don't--so I cut my hair. The first time it was to my shoulders and I keep cutting it, shorter and shorter. My ideal cut would be a supershort pixie, but I don't think my face can take it. And I had a TA who had shaved her head for a part in a play. Thought about that too.

I'm not planning on growing my hair out, but I've started wondering if my hair is just the physical manifestation of whatever I'm avoiding that has kept me from really investing in guys (despite my guy-crazy tendencies) and kept guys from liking me.

If this sounds like an online pity party for one, well, it just might be. My apologies if you suddenly feel the need for a hair cut.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Uber clutch

Today I was the world's most brilliant 115 instructor. I did the traditional, everybody's doing it intro to rhetorical analysis, but I rocked it. The idea is to have a random backpack, have students go through it, and determine what type of person owns the backpack: male, female, married, single, old, young, etc. I took it a step beyond by coming to class late, dropping the backpack on the desk and asking if anyone had left it outside of my office. When my bright-eyed, bushy-tailed freshmen students shook their heads no, I dropped it off to the side with the comment that I would take it to the Lost and Found later. I then proceeded to give their homework for Thursday and the rushwrite of the day, which was to write about RHETORIC. Scary word, especially if you have no idea what it means. I love creating fear in my students.

I had them share their answers with each other and overheard the words "Topher Grace." I stopped the girl, who happens to be one of my favorite students, and asked if she was talking about Pete from Win a Date with Tad Hamilton. She guiltly admitted she was, and the girl behind her said that was what she had thought of too. So I stopped the class, wrote the quote on the board: "I'll tear you to pieces with my bare hands--or vicious rhetoric." Brilliant. We talked about it, and then I launched into rhetorical analysis.

The point of this whole leading-up-to-moment is that I was acting spacier than usual--as if I was coming up with my lesson on the spot. So as I'm explaining rhetorical analysis, I say, "I wish there was a better way to show you what I mean. [beat] Wait a second." I hoist the bag on to my desk. "You all said this wasn't your backpack, right?" They shake their heads no again. "Well, then let's find out who's it is." An audible gasp from my students as I begin opening the bag. I glance in, and then look up. "I think I'm going to have a few of you look through this for us." I had two of my back row sitters come to the front and go through the bag, with Chase writing down on the board what was there.

A sampling: Econ book, N64 game, Japanese/English dictionary, all courtesy of Asmond. Josh Groban sheet music. Divine Comedy tickets (two, which prompted one student to declare "It's a guy. The guy always buys the tickets." Wish I had known that before). Small hymn book. Kleenex. Two CD mixes, Faith Hill, Counting Crows, and Bernstein's Mass. Lip stuff. Catcher in the Rye. Pictures from London (but they couldn't identify it as London). Oh yeah, and a bag of candy.

So as my perfectly haloed students sat in shock, Chase and I went through the bag. And then we started deciding if this bag belonged to a guy/girl, single/married, etc. The best moment was when I said, "I promised you guys candy today from last time, didn't I?" and began throwing candy out into the classroom. They were actually dodging the candy, not wanting anything to do with my antics. It was beautiful.

I did finally admit that the bag was Mary's and the stuff in the bag was mine and my friend's. To which they replied, "So we can eat the candy?"

I'll have to tell you the story in person. I just wanted to document this moment when eg went from clutch to uberclutch.

I have no spine

I actually texted him and told him I couldn't write it, but then he emailed me today and asked if I was going to write it. So I did. (See "To Kolob" post for explanation. And while I'm talking about Kolob, did anyone else see the dance forum today? The Kolob/Ballroom number was beautiful, if a little too showy for my taste.)

Press Release: Michael Johnson running for Centerville Mayor

At 22, most people are deciding what career to pursue, what person to date, and what movie to see on a Saturday night. For 22-year-old Centerville resident Michael Johnson, a decision has been made. Johnson is running for mayor.
“I have been compelled since my early childhood to seek involvement in the community and in government at every level,” states Johnson. “That same drive compels me today to seek opportunities to be involved and active to ensure the community I live in is being run responsibly and that people are being fairly represented.
“I also believe there is not a better way to spend your life than to become busy helping other people. Government provides an opportunity to do that. Although the government is not perfect, I believe it becomes one of our greatest assets when it is employed in our behalf. I want to be part of that, and make sure government performs its correct responsibilities.”
Although some may be surprised that Johnson is running at such a young age, those who know Johnson and support his candidacy are not, including former city councilman Steve Mangel. “I have had the privilege of working with Michael within the Davis School District. He was a student board member on the School Board, and worked on the Davis Reads Committee. His knowledge and background added great insight which helped in both of these areas. He is a man who has the ability to look at a problem, analyze it, and come up with some great conclusions. He is very progressive in his thinking and would be a great asset to the City, the current Council, and City Manager. He is what the city needs: a new person with some fresh ideas.”
In addition to working on the school board and Davis Reads committee, Johnson has volunteered with the Davis School District Foundation, worked as a legislative liaison for Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff, and represented the Utah chapter of the American Legion as a Boys State Senator.

More information on Michael Johnson’s campaign can be found at

It's not perfect, but not bad for less than 10 minutes of thought.

Synapse to synapse

I'm having yet another identity crisis. Chad is married. Am I a red head? Should I be in the creative writing track? Do I truly love John Cusack as much as I profess to? Can I like another guy if it means getting hurt?

So, many many questions and not so many answers. Part of me just wants to curl up with Szymborska and part of me knows that I can't handle that much beauty tonight. I'm in love with much of the world, but am afraid to approach the world. I don't want to be hurt again and I know I can deal with the kind of hurt I'm feeling right now, because I've done that for so long. And I keep trying to avoid intensifiers, but there isn't anything else there for me to use tonight. Which must mean that I'm being overly dramatic and should go to bed. But you're not my mother. And I don't go to bed when my mother tells me to. Let's hear it for early-adulthood rebellion.

(I should end there, but I really am perplexed: is my hair red?)

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Im mature

So I came home (home home, Bountiful home) Friday night to find Chad's wedding announcement. I freaked out. Not that I want to date him again, but how dare he move on with his life when I'm still stuck in a BYU singles ward?

I freaked out (again) today when I actually looked at the announcement and realized that Chad has been Mr. Tiffany Thurgood since Friday afternoon. Weird.

So I shredded the announcement. And the picture. Say it with me friends: catharsis.

In other news, I feel sorry for anyone who didn't get to see me today. Because I look hot.

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