- 7 May 2004 -
Today it is warm and so I am wearing my halter top for the first
time. It has a very pleasing pink and brown pattern, and as an
additional bonus I now know what it's like to suspend the weight of my
breasts from my neck by a string. Painful. Painful is very much what
You may notice (as I have) that I never talk about anything important
here. Serious. Whatever. In part that is because it's more enjoyable
to write funny short things, and (as in actual conversation) I can't
articulate nonfunny things for shit. That's what happens when you spend
22 years painstakingly not articulating. Again, whatever.
But today I spent some time reading through the many
(Comma's journal, which I read on occasion) about Swarthmore community
and other college communities and whether being a Swattie is a real and
recognizable identity or just a word for any person who graduated with
all those other freaks from that place. Et cetera. I have no real
response to those questions, but reading the discussion was certainly
interesting, in the same way that listening to other people's
discussions was interesting for four years at school. I didn't
participate, since that didn't make sense to me. There may have been
community, but it probably didn't make sense to me, either.
What can I say that doesn't make me sound alienated and apathetic and
very sad? Because I am not any of those things although I have
myself all of them before. I don't know. I loved Swarthmore although I
was not part of whatever community there was and I'm not deluded enough
to say I wouldn't have been equally happy at many other places.
Whatever. See? This is why I don't talk about anything important. All
I mean is that I have given up feeling like I have failed everything
around me and now without the fiction of belonging I am happier than I
have ever been. Not in this instant (greasy pizza, two more hours of
work, painful shirt) but in the general present. You understand.
- 6 May 2004 -
All right then, before anyone expires from anticipation:
The Swarthmore film department benefit --
best: free food and drink (named punningly after various films), opportunity to get dressed
up (black dress hot boots), an elevator into which one could fit an elephant. And a half,
maybe. If one had half an elephant.
worst: WHOA SWATTIES! I knew there would be a downside. Rather, Swatties trying to
The Wedrock benefit show --
best: HOLY SHIT! John Cameron Mitchell (Two-Headed Boy cover!!!! also Origin
of Love with Margaret Cho), Alan Cumming, Margaret Cho, Le Tigre, Sleater-Kinney
match Le Tigre's enthusiasm or outfits, though), Lou Reed, Lady Bunny the charming host...
and more, and more.
worst: Sandra Bernhard and Penny Arcade both mildly frightening and incoherent. Moby and
friends covered Walk on the Wild Side, which it turns out is less than exciting after
just seen Lou Reed do it.
The Saddest Music in the World premiere thing:
best: fantastic movie! (PROSTHETIC BEER GLASS LEGS!) The
director, Guy Maddin,
telling us about it afterwards. Also free beer.
worst: what? No. None! Free beer, remember?
So on, so forth, requisite catching-up. Last weekend my mother visited
and next weekend Sarah is visiting. The good!
Last Monday I caught sight of some goddamn hipster on my way home -- corduroy pants, dirty
suede shoes, velvety mismatched jacket, deliberately messy hair, Strand tote bag, messenger
bag -- and then OH SHIT IT WAS ME.
I have to go now and poke myself in the eye or something.
- 29 April 2004 -
I was going to wait until next week and report on all the things
happening this week, but since last night at Wedrock, the
Freedom to Marry
oh sorry, my hands starting flailing at the keyboard again. I was going
to say that
This is a small problem. I can't help it; it's just that
JOHN CAMERON MITCHELL SANG FUCKING NEUTRAL MILK HOTEL
AND NOW I AM MAYBE A LITTLE FLAILY!!!
Oh man oh man convergence of incongruous excellent things. Ideal
As I said before, many other things are happening this week and many
other things happened at the benefit, and I will brief the internet
later on the rest. For now I work. If I can.
- 24 April 2004 -
Where's the manual for the sewing machine?
You know. The manual that explains how to make it go. And what the NINE different presser
Not in the box. Hm. Not near the box. Not in the art cart.
I'm beginning now to have a vague memory of throwing it away.
Surely I wouldn't have done that. Surely!
Where's my time machine? I won't use it for ill. I just need to go back and PUNCH MYSELF
IN THE MOUTH!
I threw it OUT?!?
- 23 April 2004 -
Why people don't bother me on the street:
Because sometimes on my way to the subway I might be making up a song in
my head about how my pants are baggy and how much I enjoy my baggy pants
and I might start moving my lips as I think of the song and then I might
realize that I'm whispering a song about my baggy pants to myself in
public and then I'll start laughing and THEN I'll be laughing at the
pants-related song I'm singing to myself! On the street! Mystery
Why Tiffany is the best:
Because last night she acquired last-minute tickets for the
Amazing Beautiful Lion Show of Spectacle and Puppetry and Song and Dance
and Trying Not to Weep Lame Tears of Joy! I think it was called
something shorter on the program, like The Lion King. Whatever.
- 18 April 2004 -
The number of fur mousies I retrieved from beneath the art cart + beneath the oven + beneath
the refrigerator today = nine. Nine! The cat is not smart.
Friday night at 5-something in the morning we woke to the sound of a potted plant falling
from two shelves high, helped along by Squid. Tremendous crash! Shards! Dirt! It was
just the mint that hadn't sprouted anyway, so that was fortunate. But GOOD LORD, cat!
On Saturday night we took a cab home and the driver's ID in the window read "CARLOS
FUENTES." Who knew!
- 16 April 2004 -
1. Plant update: Margot is still sticks; she's living outside on the
fire escape where we're not supposed to keep plants. The basil is
coming up in little sprouts in a big red pot that I hope will
accommodate the crazy-long basil roots. The mint is not coming up at
all but I have faith. It's MINT. We'll be lucky if it doesn't devour a
cat some night after it actually starts growing. The dill came up
suddenly and cutely in little tucked loops of sprout; some of them are
flipping up and growing into spindly things. The cat-grass is growing
madly and is already several inches tall a week after planting. If you
look at the bottom of the pot you can see a root trying to creep out of
the drainage hole. I fear the cat-grass.
2. The other night Tiffany yelled at Squid and tried to simultaneously
call her "jackass!" and "dipshit!" and it came out kind of like
3. This morning I almost poured the Honey Nut Chex into the coffee
4. Today I go to the thrift store after work! Where I will drop off old
clothes and acquire new old clothes! I have worked myself into a fine
state over this. One of the upsides of living the, uh, carefully
budgeted lifestyle is the great joy one finds in small purchases.
Hooray! Old pants! Shirts and scarves that I will make into new and
interesting things! Funny dresses, old books, useful pots! OH BOY.
5. Man am I a dork. Guess what! My mother's coming to visit in two
weeks and Sarah's coming to visit two weeks after that. Sweet!!!
- 12 April 2004 -
In proper Monday fashion, I have forgotten my teensy reading glasses and
so I'm going to be squinting at my computers all day long. I predict
headaches and crankiness. I will take to the gym after work and become
strong, and also not need to see.
Well. Tiffany went AWAY to see people so I had the confusingly empty
house to myself. The cats and I did yoga. I put the plants out during
the day and took them in at night. I slept for many hours. On Friday I
attempted to do my taxes online, but it remains to be seen whether I was
successful. I might have just spent a couple of hours bumbling around
online and drinking a Guinness and making my personal information more
available to anyone paying attention. It seems I can't actually e-file,
though, so I guess I will mail my
return in with a nice note that says "I am Really Poor, you owe me mad
trust me here." Because it's true.
Saturday night I was overpaid for the privilege of baby-sitting Max for
an hour and then reading and drinking tea in a fancy 8th-floor apartment
with three nice cats for four hours while
Max slept. Okay!
There was no Easter celebration to speak of: I hard-boiled some eggs to
dye but then we were hungry and they became devilled eggs, so that may
be the opposite of Easter. I celebrated the fact that the night before
when I'd come home at 1 am there was not an intruder lurking in the
apartment even though the lights were on and I was SO SURE I had left
them off that I lurked in the hall for 15 minutes consumed by terror.
Then I went in. I guess the cats turned the light on somehow. I
wouldn't put it past them; Squid often attacks the walls. What else? I
wrote some poems, but I have no scary workshop to tell me whether
they're horrible, so maybe I'll wait a month and look at them again.
Happy spring, happy rain!
- 8 April 2004 -
Things I bought at the plant store (with Tiffany's money): four plant dishes, Miracle Gro,
6 quart bag of potting soil, small pot to break for useful shards.
Things I did not buy at the plant store: DRIED BLOOD IN A BAG.
- 7 April 2004 -
All hail the first iced coffee of spring!
I've spent a great deal of today MOSTLY WORKING but also looking at my
own webpage, because I am a big winner. No, because I was curious, and
it's the best record of several years of stuff since my computer with
journals and such got stolen. It's all best and worsty, which on the
one hand is pretty lame and vague, but on the other hand, is pretty
appropriate to the last four years or so. What is this? It's all a big
weird list of things like "sun, oatmeal, reading, chai, dancing, not
sleeping, study break, wandering, anxiety, silence, more oatmeal." But
it's not as if that's not accurate. That's pretty much the blur I come
up with now when I try to remember, and I think it was pretty much a
blur at the time. So. We strive for ACCURACY! At least as much as we
for anything, ever.
- 6 April 2004 -
You're REALLY WINDY. You settled for embedding grit
in my eyes and lip gloss only after you tried to peel off my whole face.
You even managed to get little gritty pieces IN MY MOUTH
somehow so I keep accidentally crunching mysterious debris with my
That's just gross, Spring.
But I guess I forgive you, because you did
that thing with all the red tulips on 64th Street.
- 5 April 2004 -
I forgive daylight saving time for taking my hour because it gave me such a bright pleasant
trip home from work today.
Living in New York, Best: this weekend we went to a free circuit bending workshop with
Malia. Circuit Bending Workshop! Yes! We collected creepy electronic talking/singing
children's toys from thrift stores on Saturday and on Sunday we went to the workshop where
some enthused and dorky people showed us how to take them apart and poke them to make them
warble insanely or sing like the Chipmunks or make audible-only-to-elephants sounds. Malia
made an amazing Baby Dirge Machine. Tiffany and I just fooled around. (With the TOYS.)
(The CHILDREN'S toys.)
Living in New York, worst: Five dollar tubs of ice cream, dead pigeons in the road, knowing
which homeless and/or crazy people belong to which subway stations.
At work I came across an intake form for a Powerbook and the customer had written in:
What is the problem with the machine?
BEER IN IT.
What do you want us to do?
- 31 March 2004 -
Air America is on the radio right now and we are listening to it at
Many reports say the
streaming webcast thinger isn't working very well, but here is the site if you want
Check out that date.
This morning I walked past a sign that had the date on
it, and I stopped and looked at it and said out loud "Ha! There's no
MARCH 31ST!" And went on my way, certain that it was April
1st. But you know what? It's March 31st, and I'm a dumbass.
Let me see if I can think of some things that you did not
Yesterday I did not see Dawn of the Dead and the
day before I did
not see Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind although I intend
to see both these things and I was invited. My life exists in
The cat's nails are bright pink and so are mine. I spend probably 12
hours a day looking at screens and another 8 sleeping, 1 in transit, 1
eating, so that leaves only 2 for all the things I'd rather be doing.
It is fortunate then that I don't know what any of those things are.
You think I don't mean that, BUT I DO.
Yesterday after work I stopped by the pet store and bought what amount
to diapers for my cats. Or rather, diapers for my cats' box. It seems
Now I must go do work, because that is part of what I do. I type a lot
of things. I do not write or paint or ride dolphins or mess with plants
or take care of animals or make things to sell or drive a taxi.
Negation! Never mind! What?
- 26 March 2004 -
It's after 5 on Friday and I'm sitting at work shoving handfuls of
Veggie Booty (smells like drywall! looks like rabbit food! made with
spinach and kale!) into my mouth and reading The Panda's Thumb. It's a good
time, by some extremely narrow and slightly sad definitions.
sneak preview showing of Hellboy!
Oh man I just keep getting cooler.
- 25 March 2004 -
As promised, the dog. There are more pictures of both dog and cats,
thanks to Roban. Is he the cutest puppy ever? He's up there. He loves
the cats! He loves the people! He's an unneutered male puppy who
doesn't want to pee on everything! Or ANYTHING. At least not when I
walked him. Love him! Love him!
Thank you, that is all.
- 23 March 2004 -
It's time for me to be at work. Instead, I am at home with a good 35 pounds of overenthused
undertrained 4-month-old Shepherd/Pit Bull/Boxer love! We said he could stay with us last
night because we're
suckers. Today we'll take him back to the shelter where someone will adopt him because he's
the cutest, most good-natured thing ever. With pointy ears (one flopped and one up) and a
wrinkly concerned brow. Perhaps, later, there will be... pictures!
- 22 March 2004 -
Saturday - worst time getting a cab, followed by best cabdriver ever.
There was a monologue about how he took the earlier part of the day off
because of the demonstration and if he had tried to work during it there
would have just been angry people outside the cab and angry people
inside the cab and if he tried to ask the police for help they would
have gotten angry too and at home, yeah, his wife and daughters are mad
at him, but at least they don't try and beat him up, you know! And
why were we waiting so long for a cab, next time we just have to yell
HEY CABDRIVER and then he'll be there to pick us up, you know!
But still, nice cabdriver, however nice you may be, you have not
lessened my deep aversion to taking cabs. I mean, how weird is that?
To pay some guy to drive me around in his yellow car? And I got used to
riding in cabs in Quito where I could bargain down to a dollar or so for
nearly any destination, so now I'm spoiled.
GENTLEMEN, FILL ME UP WITH BARBECUE SAUCE, FOR I AM DUMB AS
We had a lovely time at Emily and Roban's (dinner, dessert bars,
eraser-making (!!!) and cards) and the cats continue well and obnoxious.
If "horfing up food as soon as it's eaten" counts as "well." I think it
does, I think Pigeon is FINE, just not bright enough to refrain from
gorging herself every time we put new food down. Then she waddles over
to where we are, looks apologetic, and brings the kibble back. Ew,
kitty. Ew. Then she realizes she's still hungry. Et cetera.
Sunday was shopping again! Domesticity, ahoy! But now I must return to
my regularly scheduled Monday.
- 19 March 2004 -
Things about which I am excited:
5 hours until weekend! Upon the commencement of which I will hurry home
and take off my pants (and put on more comfortable ones, you creep, come
on) and drink tea and, uh, exercise my leisure. (Is that oxymoronic?
Or does it just sound dirty?)
Impending visits! My mother at the end of April, Sarah mid-May. I am
all ready to hostess. Pull-out bed! Clean linens! City funtimes! I
will bring it.
Spring cleaning! (SSSSHHHHHH.)
THE FINALE OF AMERICA'S NEXT TOP MODEL ON TUESDAY!
Things about which I am less than excited: taxes.
- 17 March 2004 -
Well, THAT was unwise:
Just now when I went downstairs to get water and there was a plate out
with little squares of unidentifiable brown treats and I sampled them.
HOW did I know they were treats when I could not identify them? Clearly
I should have thought more about that at the time.
The part yesterday where I checked the forecast in the morning, noted
the 90% chance of wet disgusting snowfall and wore a jean jacket and no
hat. On the way home I looked down at myself and my brain identified:
DENIM YETI! True.
Now I can't think of anything else unwise, but I know that can't be
right. Oh, there was the part where I spilled all the (clean, thank
goodness) cat litter on my foot. And the cats perked up at the prospect
of being able to Go all over. (No!)
- 15 March 2004 -
It was a weekend of many wonders! A weekend of happy moderately
drunken revelry! (Happy Birthday, Laurel!) Of french toast and
hangovers! Of hot pirate action! Of deeply gratifying consumerism and
Yes, well. We got a garbage-can-within-a-garbage-can deal at Bed Bath &
Blah, so now we have a nice shiny tall garbage can for the kitchen and
the cats have a much harder time of it if they want to climb into the
garbage and chew on plastic and vegetable chunks. (They do.) The
little tiny garbage can has been stationed next to the litterbox so that
we can clean it constantly and seal up the stinkiness in the lidded can,
like one of those baby-diaper-containment things.
Have I mentioned
cat stinks? A lot? And often? AND UNGODLY??? We stocked up on
scented candles on the garbage can trip, too. It's all part of the
ongoing battle against stench. I don't understand how such a small,
sleek, glossy, active animal produces odors like that. Pigeon looks
appropriately smug a lot of the time as she watches us realize that, by
god, she really IS the good cat.
Hey, do you all have Plans? Like, we're done with college, time to
execute the Plan? I worry that you do. Not even fully-formed Plans,
maybe, but scraps of Ideas, or fledgling Plans. Half-Formed Desires!
Goals! Anything? Am I supposed to, too?
Ah. I was afraid of
- 12 March 2004 -
I am going away for part of the weekend. Feel free to amuse yourselves
by reading Mimi
Doxie, or Dooce.
Yesterday on my way home from work, a woman stopped me to ask "Do you
know if movies start right away, or...?" I was waiting for her to ask
about a particular theater, or for directions, but no, that was all.
She just wanted to know when movies started. I told her about
We ordered more Soft
Paws for the
cats; Squid's will be pink. Let the games begin!
- 10 March 2004 -
On Monday as I was leaving work I passed two men on the street and one
of them said to the other, "Do you even know how to flush a toilet?!"
And the other said to the first, with a great deal of conviction, "I
shouldn't HAVE to!"
I would make fun of that man more, but between work and the gym I've
gotten so accustomed to automatic sensor operated facility thingies that
regularly spend several seconds loitering in my own bathroom at home
waiting for the toilet to flush and the sink to turn on without my help.
My favorite sign from the new catalog:
ROBOT MOVES WITHOUT WARNING
. . . . . . . . . .
Tiffany stalked the wily internet at Time Warner yesterday and trapped
it and we brought it home in a sack! Then we hooked it all up as if we
were supercompetent types, which, apparently, we are.
Squid's going to get thrown out of a window soon if she's not careful.
I vaulted out of bed so many times early this morning to grab bits of
plastic and tissues and paper away from her. Pulled a dryer sheet out
of her mouth. Then she decided to settle down in bed and eat my hair.
NO, KITTY! NO!
- 5 March 2004 -
Soon a new computer will be coming home with me. This is the good!
I am a bad ungrateful relative/friend who does not write
emails or thank-you notes or make phone calls to the people who are owed
them. Instead I watch television.
I don't even LIKE television!
What DO I like, anyway?
- 26 February 2004 -
Next week I will get a computer and drag it back to the Upper East Side
somehow and then, maybe, finally, I will breathe life back into this
I still miss the old one. I'm a Big Fucking Baby!
I don't have enough work to do today, so I am stalking everyone I can
think of. I figured out how to retrieve the current homework
assignments from my old high school teachers! I'm tempted to do some
and mail it back to Ohio. Not very tempted, however.
ROCK ME AMADEUS!
The cats are supercute. I was going to call them superfuckingcute, but
I think I'm swearing too much already.
I'm going to the gym tonight if it's the last thing I ever do. I swear!
I love my corporate discount. I lift Heavy Things! I hope it's not the
last thing I ever do.
You should all track down and watch the movie Black Cat White
BABY BABY DO IT TO ME ROCK ME!
- 20 February 2004 -
Because of this
Man when I read this
Man I hear it in John Darnielle's voice.
(Too lazy to figure out how to link to the song lyric page itself,
. . . . . . . . . .
Last night Squid dragged everything out of the cat-toy-box and deposited
the Christmas Cat Cape on the foot of the bed. Maybe she wants to wear
it? Also, countless socks! They can hardly stay in that pesky sock
I'd feel better if someday I didn't get rewarded for the same half-assed
half-brained effort I make at everything. Sometimes this joke gets
really fucking tired. Or I do. Or something!
I'm sorry, I'm going to go look forward to my salad while I do some work
and read some Seamus Heaney online while trying not to cry about it.
- 10 February 2004 -
The only thing better than Nerds for breakfast is Nerds for breakfast
AND the previous dinner!
- 9 February 2004 -
I opened a box of sweetheart candies and we were laughing at how
lame all of the messages are but then I found one that had
been misaligned and part of the message was cut off so that it read
Happy Valentine's Day early. Whoa.
. . . . . . . . . .
Last night (early this morning) the little cat woke me up scratching in
her box and then immediately hopped into the bed (the better to share
the reek with us, of course) and I kept trying to herd her down
to the foot of the bed but she was having none of it. Finally she
curled up on my back and put one paw on either side of my neck and
purred herself to sleep. What a cat.
- 6 February 2004 -
There are several places I may be this weekend; it is undecided. What
is certain is that I won't be at work, where I only manage to scald
myself with pizza (and not the roof of my mouth, no, I mean fistfuls
of steaming cheese!) and walk in on someone in the bathroom. Again.
- 5 February 2004 -
A Brief Timeline of Squid
January 20 - February 1.
Squid arrives home, commences sneezing, does not stop. The interior of
our apartment is speckled with a light coating of dried cat snot. She
favors the VCR, the comforter on the bed, and our sleeping
faces. She doesn't eat much and seems generally miserable. There
are trips to the vet.
February 2. Suddenly, Squid's eyes dilate, she slumps to the
ground and lays rigid, eyes open, not breathing for several seconds.
Then she sneezes, gets up and bats at a mouse toy.
February 3 - present. Nothing like near-death experiences to get
a cat up and moving.
Squid's nose becomes wet and her sneezing decreases. Squid sniffs the
entire house like it's brand-new, she hoovers her food, she tries to
eat the jewelry box, she attacks my braided hair, she drinks the tea
from my cup.
I come home from work and Tiffany asks
"Where did you leave the can of cat food when you left?"
"Where I always do...? On the counter."
"So... not on the floor with the foil off and full of tooth marks?"
"Probably not, no."
It's a real kitten! I can't wait until it's a real cat.
- 2 February 2004 -
I am glad that the new cat loves us so much, but I wish she could
express it in a medium other than phlegm.
I am too cranky to report anything else because the bank and I are
disagreeing about how much money I have and the prospect of living on
$15 for the next two weeks is not appealing.
- 28 January 2004 -
I'm wondering where I can buy echinacea for my cat. In case anyone
wanted to know the precise sort of monster I've become.