Thursday, August 31, 2006

I can see us holding hands...

So I probably shouldn't admit this on the internets (will I be sued??) but I have a copy of the new Justin Timberlake CD. Of course illegally. I will NOT reveal my sources, but let me just say I did not download it or purchase it in any manner...and I won't "roll over" on the person who I obtained it from.

I've listened to the CD maybe 2 times? Possibly 3. My first impression: sounds like much of what I hear on the radio. My second: it's growing on me. Some of the songs will continue to annoy. It sort of annoys me that Justin says he wants to do something different....and then it's not all that different.

I know some rude reader from anonymous comment land has an aversion to my Timberlake love. Whatever weirdos...nobody forces you to read this blog and then post a rude comment. Really. My original point here was that despite all of the pop culture snobbery in the world and the stigma associated with blatant Timberlake love, I still heart him. I heart him enough to turn on MTV occasionally. I heart him enough to keep on listening to his album even though I was not loving it the first time (yes, that was a Justin Timberlake pun. Did you get it?).

Either way, I forgot how awesome it was to watch man-meat Timberlake prance around on stage. Yes, I said man-meat. I wonder what kind of rude comments I'll get this time?

And, if you thought I was some kind of creepy stalker girl because of the post title, you are mistaken. Song lyric.


Book Quest update! If you're not interested in my reading patterns, read no more.

Finished Neuromancer. I thought it was OK, I really got into it towards the end - I just wanted to know what was going to happen. As far as the book goes, it's a science fiction caper book. Sort of action-adventure. This is not my genre. But I didn't hate reading it - I'd put it up there in my top ten of the list so far (I've only read 35. Which means: 87 left!)

Next up: A Passage to India by E.M. Forster.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Two's a perfect number....

Happy blog-iversary to me! Today is the 2 year anniversary of Katie + Blog = fun?. It's been some fun and some depression and some annoyance. I think fun with a ? just about describes it.

In order to celebrate this anniversary of mine, I went out shopping for a "Two" meme. I came up with two and decided to go with both. First one found here.

Two Names You Go By
1. Katie, Kate to my family/good friends
2. Laur. Long story.

Two Things You Are Wearing Right Now:
1. the cutest underwear EVER
2. surfboard boxer shorts

Two Things You Want in a Relationship:
1. humor
2. independence

Two Things You Want Really Badly:
1. A donut
2. a cute little kitten (ok, i want this, but KNOW i can't have it - so i'll give you a 2.5)
2.5. Honey crisp apples

Two pets you had/have:
1. Mona - silly calico cat
2. Boku - stately calico cat

Two Favorite Sports:
1. Hockey
2. um....

Two people who will fill this out:
1. sometimes my sister is a good bet
2. as is J, red-headed Minnesotan

Two things you did last night:
1. changed the sheets on my bed
2. changed the cat litter (fun!)

Two Favorite Places to eat:
(ever-changing - right now I'd love to go:)
1. Frontera
2. Sweet Mandy B's

Two People that live in your house:
1. Me
2. um, do cats count?

Two things you like about yourself:
1. independence
2. my ass

Two things you ate today:
1. a granola bar
2. a bagel smeared with peanut butter

Two people you Last Talked To:
(decided co-workers and cats do not count)
1. the sister
2. if emails count: the Dad. If not, friend Katy.

Two Things You're doing tomorrow:
1. going to work
2. watching Project Runway (Vincent ARRRGH, go home)

Two things that make you laugh:
1. always that one scene in Elf where he gets hit by a cab. I don't know why.
2. Daily Show

Two Favorite Holidays:
1. Halloween
2. Christmas

Two last films you've seen:
1. Odd Girl Out
2. Crash

Meme number two...found here:

Two Names You Go By:
(guess I should try to think of two more)
1. Katrink
2. Kitschqa

Two Parts of your Heritage
1. Italian
2. German (hmmm, I guess I really have dictator in my blood)

Two Things that Scare you
1. Falling (of any kind: heights, water, etc)
2. The idea of a fire in this apartment...more the scary prospect of herding the cats to save them from a fiery death

Two Everyday Essentials
1. my backpack
2. water

Two Things you are wearing right now
(again time to think of 2 more)
1. a coraly-reddy bra
2. an old AOII seniors shirt

Two of your Favorite Bands or Musical Artists
1. Death Cab for Cutie
2. Keane

Two Things you want in a relationship
(lots of repeats in these twofer memes)
1. Hot sex (he he he he he)
2. Trust

Two Truths
1. There is always a happy medium
2. Every action has a consequence

Two Things you Hate
1. Music snobbery (maybe Pop Culture snobbery in general - what you read, who you listen to, what you watch)
2. Summer

Two Physical Features that Appeal to You
1. Do I even need to say it? Teeth.
2. Bald headed-ness.

Two of Your Favorite Hobbies
1. Watching TV
2. Reading

Two Things you Want Really Badly
(the second)
1. a return trip to London (of course AFTER all the new security measures are a little less crazy. I need to carry-on something, a book, an IPod, SOMETHING)
2. A huge, beautiful painting for my mantle

Two Places you Want to Go On Vacation:
(I'll not mention London)
1. I'm thinking either San Diego or DC for the next vacay
2. the constants: Disney World, Arizona, and added last year Hawaii

Two Things you Want to Do Before you Die
1. Own some Chicago real estate
2. Watch my friends and family grow old - celebrate weddings, birthdays, births etc.

Two Ways that you are Stereotypically a Chick/Guy
1. My hyper-critical view of my body
2. My love of Justin Timberlake

Two Things You Normally Wouldn't Admit
1. I pick my nose and sometimes, I eat it(you know you all do it too)
2. Sometimes I sit around in my bra and underwear (I tend to be prudish about this kind of thing)

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Home improvement weekend...

I feel like this weekend has been quite successful. I don't want to go into details of everything I've accomplished, but I thought I'd share some pictures of my finally finished home improvement projects.

First, my new bulletin board (tile looks gray and black, but is actually light blue and navy):

Some thoughts on the bulletin board: I love it. It is nowhere near perfect. There are some gaps between some squares. Mostly my fault. If I was a perfectionist (like my mom) I would have made a grid on the wall and followed it strictly. I just sort of let the squares be my guide. The little gaps don't bother me - eventually the thing will be so covered in crap that you won't be able to see the attractive grid pattern anyway. For $35 (incl. shipping) I think this bulletin board is an AWESOME deal. It was easy to stick to the wall, it's big (18" by 24"), just a great deal. If you decide to buy some, consider drawing a grid on the wall and be sure to count the mounting squares the company sends you immediately. I went to hang the bulletin board a few weeks ago and was short by 40 mounting squares. Yes, 40. They sent them out right when I asked...but I still had to wait for the mail.

A pretty new bathtub:

Besides needing a serious cleaning, the tub decals needed to be replaced. Looks lovely.

And, a past project I'd like to share:

My bedroom wall squares, quite happy with them (i know you love the unmade bed...which is pretty much NEVER made).

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Take me back...

The brother and step-sister (that's weird to say) have both just started their freshman year in college. With their leaving, they have left behind an old lady (me) who can't stop thinking about my freshman year (6 years ago!). I can only hope their experience is different from mine.

The only way to describe or qualify my freshman year in positive terms is something like, "a learning experience." I feel like everything that could have been working against me was. Being a shy person, I was hoping to hit it off with my roommate and floormates. The chances that I would talk to people in class was slim.

My roommate turned out to be a weirdo and my floor was full of upper-classmen. I somehow ended up in an upper-classman dorm. My floor had 3 or 4 doubles and all singles. Bad news. I joined a sorority but had a hard time going to any social events (I didn't know anyone in the sorority and my "pledge mom" was a non-joiner who eventually left the sorority). In short, I made not a single friend.

I had fun when my high school friends came to visit or when I visited them. Some of my high school acquaintances went to the same college as me, but it was really hard to keep in touch. And we were all really different - I went out with them a few times and did have fun...but it somehow wasn't possible to be real friends. Plus, I was desperately unhappy in my dorm and had a hard time working up the energy to want to go out.

Anyway, yeah. Freshman year, not so great. It got better, A LOT better. And I still have friends from college who I hope to have forever (all from the sorority that I did manage to stick with).

Part of me wishes I could go back, have better luck with my dorm assignment. I would be an entirely different person today. I probably wouldn't be as cynical. Possibly not as bitter. Maybe not such a loner (that seems unlikely). But chances are, I'd still be the kind of person that doesn't love to go out. That was firmly rooted in me in high school.

What always strikes me as weird is how vastly different all of my high school girls' experiences were compared to what we expected. I don't think any of us loved freshman year of college. None of us had that year of newfound freedom and wildly inappropriate young adult fun. I think that may be one of the reasons we are still all such good friends. Or maybe it's the reason we were friends in the first place, because we aren't "typical" girls.

Sort of fun, sort of torturous to be remembering that year. But even just processing it all like this is really good...another way to learn from it all...

Friday, August 25, 2006

I'm all about solutions...

Yesterday someone was passing out beer cozy's (ok, it could be any canned drink, but I feel like the name of the product is beer cozy) in front of my L stop. I tried to brush by the guy, but he sort of loudly asked, "Coozy miss?" Yes, he misprounounced cozy.

The point here is that I sort of take umbrage to being called miss. But I also don't like being called ma'am. Miss makes me feel like a 13 year old. Ma'am, a 40 year old. I feel like there needs to be some moniker for the in-betweenies. These are the few I came up with on my walk home:

and the best: Nam-nam.

Nam-nam. Imagine if someone was like, Beer cozy, nam-nam? Wouldn't you giggle and possibly say yes? Rather than feel like, HEY, I'm not a miss. And I'm definitely not a ma'am. Not a miss-not a ma'am. Nam-nam.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Questionable character...

I am calling my own character into question.

Yesterday I went on a quick lunch date with someone from an online site. He was cynical, geeky, not unattractive. The date went well. But (here's where my character is lacking) he has really icky teeth. And after much deliberation (hours at work staring at boring data) I realized that I cannot get past his teeth. I can't look past it. I am that shallow.

Here's my teeth test: imagine sticking your tongue in the person's mouth. If you don't feel nauseous by the mental image, he/she has passed.

In this case, the boy had greenish, chunky looking teeth. I can get past crooked teeth. I have a hard time with discoloration.

Off topic:

Dear Pluto,

You will always be a planet to me.


Tuesday, August 22, 2006


Said in a high pitched wonderment voice.

I just pre-ordered the Justin Timberlake CD (even if I'm less than thrilled with SexyBack) and as a little present to me from Justin (or itunes...but it's more fun to think it's from Justin) I immediately got the single SexyBack. Instant gratification (sort of. If I liked the song. It's not that I hate it, it's just that...I don't love it).

In other music news, I haven't been listening really at all. I'm not crazy about anything right now (although for the 20 minutes I listened to my IPod at work today I did have one minute of pure music joy while listening to the studio version of #41). So yeah. I listen to my IPod for short stretches at work. A total of 20 minutes of music on a good day. Sort of sad. Maybe the Timberlake will awaken my music love (dubious).

Monday, August 21, 2006

Which blog will it be...

Today I planned about 8 different blog entries. Ranging from rude to silly. I am going to go with something middle of the road. Namely: book quest update.

I finished The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen. I really liked it. It was a book about a family, which is a departure from what I was getting used to: political turmoil, drugs, war, etc. Although to be fair The Corrections actually does have all of those things in it, but it really is centered around the family. All in all, one of my top reads on the list so far.

Now I'm on to Neuromancer by William Gibson. This is definitely a further departure from my usual reading. Science Fiction (although I do confess that I don't mind some sci fi). I'm maybe 12 pages in and pretty confused. I think I understand what's going on (big picture style) but certain details are missing. Maybe they are supposed to be missing or maybe I'm just dense...all I know is that my current question is: his nervous system was maimed? So what does this mean for his body? Why can't he perform his old job (ie: hacking into companies and thieving money)?

Thursday, August 17, 2006


That is the sound of a blogger burping up random shit.

I would like to announce that I am officially a computer nerd. While I hate my professor for this class (and am in fact, planning on ditching my class later) I kind of like trees and hash tables. If that means anything to you, you are a nerd too. Basically I'm just learning about ways to store data and those are two ways. Compared to vectors, arrays, linked lists...they are positively enjoyable. Trust me.

My sister mentioned that one of her friends has a gaming problem, where she gets obsessed and can't stop playing. I too have this problem. It really is a wonder that I ever had a social life. I love data structures and computer games. Nerd. Capital N.

This air and water show that is happening this weekend? AWFUL. The planes (jets?) have been loudly going back and forth overhead all morning. Just now, it set off a car alarm. That's how loud it is. I'm surprised that the cats aren't having a heart attack.

Finally, I have this random tidbit (seriously, seriously random): If you think Giordano's is the best deep dish in the city, you do not qualify as a Chicagoan (unless you can intellectually defend it against every other great deep dish place in the city, because you've tried them all). Go to the real Uno's (I'm not talking chain here). Go to Lou Malnati's. Giordanos? Bleck.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006


I am currently skipping my class. And though I know intellectually I shouldn't feel guilty, I do. So I'm confessing to you all to appease the guilt. The worst part is that I'm 96% sure I'm skipping class on Thursday too. I've had it with this professor. And he said last week that the stuff covered this week won't be on the last test. And I can watch the lectures from the comfort of my home later. So yeah. I confess. I'm a class skipper.

But, I was victorious against cake today. A girl had a "last day of work" cake. And someone even BROUGHT me a piece (since I was not going to get my own). I turned down that piece of cake.*

*In the interest of full disclosure (since this is a "confessional" post), the cake was not my favorite. Chocolate cake with chocolate frosting. However, when in the middle of a full on diet, any cake is torture for me. I am usually at the mercy of a serious sweet tooth. And this cake had some really, really tasty looking frosting. But I resisted. I resisted!

Friday, August 11, 2006


  • What a beautiful day! Not that I've gotten to enjoy it much, but all the windows are open and I can smell/feel the breeze. It is wonderful out there. It is wonderful in here. To not have to worry about a leaking air conditioner, to have ALL the windows open, it just feels joyful!
  • Last night in the bathroom of the building where I have class, there was a clump of hair on the floor. Not just like a few hairs, a little clumpy ball. Just in the middle of the floor by the sinks. Ok, the only logical explanation is that someone emptied their hairbrush in the middle of the floor. Why? Why would you do that???
  • For the past few years (i think 2) I've seriously been questioning my hormones. I literally thought I was no longer attracted to humans (only attracted to aliens?). Intellectually I could point out boys I found attractive, but I hadn't actually felt attraction, really felt it. I'll spare you the details, but there's a cute boy in my class. Welcome back hormones. Unfortunately for them, I am positive it won't work for two reasons:
    • (oh look! inner-bullitudes!)I am 97% convinced he has a girlfriend.
    • He is a quiet, reading type boy. I am a quiet, reading type girl. We will never, ever talk to each other. Even though he sat next to me yesterday.
  • I am already unreasonably excited about Halloween and Christmas. It seems a little early doesn't it? It's just that all of the good holidays are at the end of the year...
  • Back up to the computer to write a boring program that no one will ever use and which I find vaguely annoying.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Making up words is an asset...

Over the weekend I had to take an awful (and frustrating) test for my class. I only have 3 more classes left but at least 1 homework assignment and 2 tests. By Friday of next week all of those items will have to be turned in. Sounds like a crunch, eh? Well it is.

So I was taking this test. And there was one problem I just could NOT do. I was seriously angry and frustrated (possibly the birthplace of my migraine Saturday night/Sunday morning?). I finally hit upon something that was right and in my delirium/ecstasy I used a funny name for a variable.

For you non-computerites out there, when you write java code, each variable is supposed to vaguely describe what you want it to do. Usually you use things like num1, name, size, etc. I called my main variable moolie.

I don't know where it came from. I don't know what possessed me to leave it in the code and not just change it to something much more intelligent like: sortArray (if that means anything to you). But I didn't.

And when I got my test back today, I think it helped. Because I did something wrong on that problem and in his delight/confusion over my variable name, he clearly forgot to deduct any points. The first phrase in the explanation of what I should have done wasn't "-1" like most of the others, but "moolie?".

Yes. Moolie.

And ps - i just looked up moolie to see if it is a word and it is. It is not a nice word - none of the 7 definitions on this site are nice. But you can believe me when I say that I had no idea that the word was real (or slang real. Cause it's not really real). Hopefully the professor didn't either.

Monday, August 07, 2006

yawn, blink...blink...yawn...

Rather than dwell on my neverending exhaustion and the fact that I've had 500,000 migraines in the past 3 weeks, I'm going to talk about someone other than myself.

There is only one wall in my cubicle that I have to share with someone else. My neighbor is a beautiful twenty-something Muslim girl. She has been one of my favorite student workers for a few reasons:
  • rather than crappy pop music, she listens to BBC radio.
  • she's always quiet and polite
  • she's older, and just seems less like a freshman in college (read: is less annoying).
Anyway, she basically talks on the phone for 6 hours a day. I have no speakers on my computer and cannot help but hear her conversations. I have learned so much from her conversations. Seriously - no joke.

Today I learned all about the flaws she sees in her particular family's approach to marriage. I guess somebody she's related to (or knows?) got engaged after just meeting someone. The girl ended up calling if off after the engagement party and now everyone refers to the girl as the "divorced one." After hearing the conversation it's clear that they still have something approximating arranged marriage...which is so foreign to me. It sounds like my co-worker is battling with her parents over marriage all the time.

I have also learned how awfully bigoted Americans can be. I guess some man refused to sit next to her on an airplane once. Isn't that awful? I mean...let's say he is a dumb ass and assumes all women/men in Muslim garb are going to blow up/crash planes. Moving seats...not going to save him. All I know is that my co-worker was mortified by the event...can you imagine someone refusing to sit next to you on a plane? Argh.

So this job...sure I'm gaining computer experience (I have learned that I don't want to be in data maintenance) but I'm also taking a tiny step out of my sheltered, suburban world....even if I am doing it vicariously through a girl's phone conversations (maybe that makes me creepy?).

New goal: no migraines for the rest of August. Let's make this happen!

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Saturday interlude...

Description on the back of the coolest pill container in the world (notice in the picture, when you "open" the silicone holding area it becomes a handy little "tray" to hold your pills for you while you grab as many as you need):

The extraction part is reversed to become hollow. A lid changes its shape itself as a tray quickly. It is a convenient and foppish supplement case. It is very easy to open and close by only single hand without spilling the contents! The appearance is so cute but having a great capability as well.

That is word for word. Foppish?

Ah Japan, you make me giggle.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Welcome August...

For the past week I've been seriously tired/exhausted/useless and I realize there are a number of outside factors I can blame it on:
  1. the weather
  2. I'm sticking strong to the diet, which means my body is adjusting to this whole not stuffing the face thing.
But now today I am thinking maybe I have just been sick for a few days. Today I feel extra awful. (this next paragraph may be harmful to some readers with delicate sensibilities) On the way to work, about 1/4 of a block away from my apartment building I almost turned around because I thought I was going to shit my pants. I did not turn around. I proceeded here, to work. For the next 40 minutes (on my walk to work, the L ride) I nervously considered what I would do if I had in fact, shat my pants. The fact that I couldn't tell should have alarmed me. But, I just came up with a logical progression of what I would do if I had soiled myself. Before even entering my particular office suite, I hit up a deserted bathroom. You'll all be happy to know that my underwear is still white. Lovely story heh? Didn't think you'd be getting this kind of information when you started reading?

So yeah...I think I have to skip my class tonight. Which just completely and entirely sucks. I technically won't miss anything (I can watch the whole lecture from the comfort of my couch tomorrow), but sitting and watching 3 hours of boring, boring lecture while at home surrounded by other things you could/want to be doing is excrutiating. It's harder than actually just going to class (which I must confess I read through the whole thing anyway. He's not the best, this professor). Speaking of reading:

I finished Lovely Bones. It is the only book (with a few exceptions, like LOTR) that I feel I might have read even without the list. It's more along the lines of the things I read in everyday life, so it was an easy, enjoyable read. I'm not sure about it's spot on the list of books you should read before you die (the list made by librarians, this was not a Time 100 book. We added the 30 books you should read before you die. Which is why there are a total of 122 books. I think I went through this all before). I was engaging, but just a normal book. Meh.

Next up (already 1/5 of the way into it): The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen.