--> divine angst

Thursday, January 13, 2005


So this is what I've been working on for the last couple of days:

You'll be automatically redirected in just a few seconds, so bookmark "http://divineangst.com." Don't forget to update your feeds!

Big thanks to blawgcoop (that's the blawg co-op) for hosting my new Movable Type blog.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005


I seem to have forgotten to post today!

So I give you this:

One of the things I do in my job is deal with online classes. I am currently working on a class titled Human Sexuality.

Now, I am not a prude, not one bit, but in the course of my editing, I keep having to load one particular page, on which is an assignment that involves labeling parts of the anatomy. The parts belong to the female of the human species, and they are presented from an external view. (How's that for vague? I don't need those kinds of Google searches bringing people here.)

At any rate, every time I scroll past this image—which is GIANT—I blush. How can I help it? I feel like I'm violating this poor drawing. There she is, all by herself, without even the comfort of a torso or the portion of the legs below the hips. She doesn't even really have a bottom. She's just all [blank].

God, I'm blushing now. It's awful.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

aggregation or aggravation?

Fitz-Hume at BTQ has a post about aggregators. I started to reply in comments, but my reply got really long. So here it is.

I use an aggregator; it's great. It keeps my blogreading streamlined and I don't comment frivolously.

Fitz seems to like aggregators, too, but he mentions the possible drawbacks:
...a couple of other issues came to mind as I tried to imagine BTQ as a RSS-only experience. The first is that some bloggers rely on in-text links to convey humor or even information - think of them as sorta like the prop-comics of the blogosphere. However, RSS feeds do not always display in-text links....Without links let's face it - SMP? is not that great (see here for example). It's like taking away Gallagher's hammers and watermelons - it's just not funny. With links, however, SMP? kills. Kills, Jerry! Until aggregators successfully display in-text links, I think this factor will inhibit a RSS-only evolution of blogs.

The same is true for images. Feed aggregators don't display images. We don't post images as often as some people, but we post pictures often enough that our posts would suffer from a RSS-only environment. We might survive, but some blogs rely on images as heavily as others rely on in-text links. Can you imagine Go Fug Yourself without images? Neither can I.

OK, so first I want to say that some feeds show links and some don't, and that's primarily due to competing protocols for feeds. Most blogger or blogspot blogs use atom, a protocol that generally does display a more rich content, including links and images. For example, I generally have no problem seeing the images on Go Fug Yourself via Bloglines—likely because Heather and Jessica are using Blogger with a default atom feed.

No, I think the bigger issue with RSS feeds and aggregators isn't what content is viewable—the protocols will start coverging rapidly and they'll all be about the same soon—it's what actual content is available on a feed.

Some bloggers choose not to include entire posts in their feed. This can have the effect of drawing a reader to the actual site (thereby increasing page views) but only if—and this is a big if—the title or the blurb that is available is sufficiently interesting. As a reader, though, sometimes I'm not hooked enough to visit—and maybe I miss out on something interesting. Some of the blogs I read truncate in their feeds and I'm torn on whether or not I care for it. Quite frankly, it can be highly annoying if I'm short on time and don't want to click through to read the rest of the post. Of course, if the tag is good, it serves the purpose of keeping me from wasting time on a post I'm not interested in. Unfortunately, that's not always the case.

Conversely, the teaser model makes sense for news sites—they operate on ad revenue, and news content isn't always appropriate for an aggregator. I'm thinking particularly of The New York Times Magazine—often the articles in the Magazine are so lengthy that reading them in an aggregator would be more difficult, rather than less. Also, I think (for the most part) journalists are used to writing to the headline-reader: lots of people won't bother picking up a paper at 40¢ unless the headline catches their eye. That's not to say every headline in the NYT is great—they're not—but at least they are informative and I know what I'll be getting if I click through. And I don't spend so much time clicking around news sites to see where the good stories are.

Look, I used to spend hours each day, interrupting my workflow to click through my blogroll and visit all my news bookmarks, hoping for new content. It was a major time suck. I won't say my aggregator keeps me from wasting time reading blogs—God knows it doesn't!—but it keeps me from idly wasting my time. I know when there's new stuff for me to read and I can read it at my leisure.

the circle of school

Classes have started again for Mr. Angst—he's taking some math classes that are prereqs for graduate school—which means two nights a week I am left to my own devices. Much the same as last semester.

I'll repeat it—I think it's great that he's taking classes and working full time and doing well (all A's so far). But I miss our regular schedule. I miss knowing that he'll be home for dinner; I miss menu planning for two people. It's a bad spiral, because now I'll start eating out, eating junk, or just not eating. That's bad for my health.

And I'll also end up sitting on the couch like a complete waste, just waiting for him to get home so I can have someone to talk to.

Wow. This post makes me sound like a totally pathetic loser! I'm not—I promise! I've just gotten used to life with Mr. Angst. I guess last semester should have prepared me, but it didn't. (It doesn't help that, the entire semester, I sat around thinking, But there are only x more weeks of school, and then things will be back to normal! Hah!)

At any rate, if anyone has suggestions of things I can do to keep busy—that don't include cleaning house—I'm all ears. I have some books to read, but when I read at home, sometimes I get distracted by the computer, the TV, or the refrigerator.

hey now!

I have evolved. I am now a Slithering Reptile.

Mr. Angst won't like that—he hates snakes.

I'm working on some bloggy-type stuff, so posting may be light this week while I figure a few things out.

Until then, anything you want me to tell you about? I guess this is my own version of an all-request week.

Monday, January 10, 2005

bad dates ≠ dating is bad

Stag has this post about a recent bad date she went on.

Now, I'm married, and Mr. Angst and I have been a couple for almost five years, so I haven't had to date in a while. And reading stag's story, I'm glad I haven't had to date. I remember the dread in my stomach when I'd go on a date with someone. I always hoped he would be compatible with me, interesting, fun, and funny; but I always knew there would be something wrong with him. (And there always was something wrong with him until my first date with Mr. Angst. Seriously—that date was about as perfect as a first date can get.)

So I don't envy stag her bad dates because I wish I were still dating.

I do, though, feel a tiny bit of jealousy. And it has to do with meeting new people.

Look, I admit it, dating sucks, but dating is also a way to get out and meet people, people you might become friends with even if you don't match up romantically. (This has never happened to me, because the people I went on dates with before Mr. Angst were all profoundly unlikeable people; this has, however, happened to my best friend—a lot.)

There's something so nice about the possibility of meeting someone in a class or at the gym or even (though not as nice) at a bar and then striking up an actual friendship that extends beyond the original common ground. But for some reason, the people you meet in class, at the gym, or in bars don't want to strike up friendships with you when you're married. They just want to date, and married people are pretty much off-limits. (Again, I am generalizing; I took a class where almost everyone in it became good friends, but that was an unusual situation and a quite rare result. I'm also generalizing about married people being off-limits; there are some people who don't seem to mind that situation, but for the sake of argument...)

This sounds really stupid and petulant, and it's probably at least a little erroneous, but I miss the spontaneity of going on dates with people I haven't gotten to know yet. It's exciting, it's new, it has so much promise for what might happen. It's sort of like when people say they're afraid to get married because they'll never have another first kiss, and they'll miss the rush of kissing someone for the first time. I don't feel that way—married kisses are awesome—but I understand the feeling.

And I kind of feel the same way about dates. I don't want to date anymore, but I kind of miss the excitement of meeting new people that way. Once you're married, there's not really a corollary way of making new friendships.

Oh, and of having good stories to tell about how awful the date was.

funny story...

See this? The Reno-Tahoe area has received 19 feet of snow at higher (+7000 feet) elevations and up to 6-1/2 feet at lower elevations since December 28.

My dad was caught in some of that early snow. See, it all started when he went out there for a few days of R&R before the Rose Bowl. He was leaving from Reno on New Year's Eve, but staying in Tahoe.

Now, if you know anything about the Lake Tahoe area, you'll know that the only commercial airport that serves it is in Reno, and Reno is a bit of a haul away from Tahoe—particularly South Lake Tahoe.

Back to our protagonist. Smart man that he is, seeing that four feet of snow has fallen on the 30th, he changes his 6:00 am flight to 10:30 am. He orders a cab for 6:00 am, goes to sleep, and figures he'll get woken up by the snowplows when they come by at 5:15 am, as they have all week.

But the snowplows do not come. (He does, however, wake up.) He hopes they'll come and passes the time shoveling the stairs down to the road. It takes him 45 minutes to clear a path down the stairs that is approximately 1-1/2" wide. The snowplows still have not come.

At 6:00 am the cabbie calls and says he can't get up the road to where my dad is staying. That road is covered in four feet of snow. So my dad—remember, he's smart!—puts on his heavy coat, then his waterproof ski shell, and his snow boots. He somehow leaves his gloves behind. He throws his carry-on over one shoulder and his hanging bag over the other, and starts walking. Through chest high snow. For about a third of a mile.

It is, by the way, still snowing. About 200 feet out, he stops and looks back and cannot see his tracks. He can't even really see the house. So he keeps going. He makes it another few hundred feet and is pretty sure he's going to die. His chest is pounding. He's breathing in snow. HE IS NOT WEARING GLOVES.

It takes him another 45 minutes to get down to the road where the cabbie is. (What a great cabbie, waiting for him!) He is soaked and he cannot feel his hands. The cab drops him off at one of the casinos so he can catch a shuttle to the airport.

He's soaked, remember, so he treks to a bathroom, where they are mopping the floors. He asks the cleaning guy to hold off a few minutes mopping so he can change clothes, but the guy doesn't listen. My dad stands on his wet jeans—hey, they were wet already—and does the clothes-changing dance. He wrings out his heavy wool socks, which appear to have been dunked in Lake Tahoe (average water temp: 50˚). At the front desk, he asks for three laundry bags, into which go his wet jeans and shirt, his sodden socks and boots, and his dripping coat. He checks them with the bellhop for the weekend and scurries out to the shuttle deck.

Then he waits. The shuttle is almost an hour late, so he gets to the airport a scant 30 minutes before his flight. Then his flight is delayed another 45 minutes. He is shaking and coughing—and still can't feel his right thumb—but he makes it to LA.

Why, you ask, would he do this? I asked the same thing. The answer? "I had everyone's tickets to the football game—all eight of them—and they'd have missed the Rose Bowl if I hadn't made it." Was it worth it? "Oh, yeah. The game was great! And I got the feeling back in my thumb later that night. Of course, I was coughing up snow for three days. And sort of shaky all weekend. But the game was great!"

The moral of the story is: always wear your gloves. Also: don't be stupid and walk out into record snowfall in the cold, dark, early morning. Especially if that record snowfall is chest high. Even if you have eight tickets to the Rose Bowl in your pocket. In the grand scheme of things, it's just a football game.

Sunday, January 09, 2005

further evidence of my bad taste in movies

Last week it was Volcano, tonight it's Twister.

I admit it, I watch all the Discovery Channel shows about tornados and earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. These movies are just an extension of that interest, I guess. And it's not like I think they're good movies or anything. I am fully aware of their badness. But they are, in fact, craptastic—total garbage, but completely watchable garbage.

Think poorly of me now. I know you will.

geeking out

Yesterday, Mr. Angst and I finally celebrated Christmas with my dad. Yes, yes, very belated, but also very enjoyable. (My stepmother makes a wicked tenderloin....so yum.)

Amongst the tchotchkes I received were a few gifts I was thrilled to get: a stovetop espresso maker, some capuccino mugs, and two books I've been hoping someone would buy for me: Garner's Modern American Usage and A Dictionary of Modern Legal Usage (also by Garner). (I received earlier The Elements of Legal Style, a third book by Garner. Yeah, I have a bit of an obsession, but the man is a genius at this stuff. He also edits Black's Law Dictionary.)

I was so thrilled to get these books that I immediately opened up one and started perusing. My stepmother, who bought them based on my Amazon.com wishlist, had no idea what kind of books they were and asked why I wanted them, and what value they had.

So I started talking about the differences in usage between British and American English, the misuses of over-complex constructions, and finally flipped to an entry to make my point. I started reading from "toward/towards."

Mr. Angst burst out laughing.

Apparently, I was geeking out. I looked up to see that my stepmother's eyes were sort of glazed over. I also noted that my father had tuned out completely and was inspecting the golf range finder we'd bought him.

Um. OK. I closed the books, put them down, and smoothed over my geek attack by mumbling, "Well, they're just really good reference books, since I do so much editing at work, and I'll be doing so much writing next year..." I think I did a pretty good job of redeeming my cool factor to the 'rents. We had coffee, talked about playoff football and I managed to pass myself off for the rest of the night as a relatively normal human being.

But tonight, at home with Mr. Angst, I feel no need to hide my wordlove. I hauled out my prizes and promptly began reading the prefaces. Hey—everyone has a vice. This one is mine.

The question is, can these books count toward the 50 Book Challenge?

holy crap

I've never been so glad to have stopped watching 24 as when I saw that the season premiere is going to be four hours, on two nights. Excessive, much?

all the little details

Now that I have officially been accepted to law schools in both of our target cities, I am starting to think about the details: housing, transportation, buying a new laptop.

Because I'm a total geek, the laptop question is the one I'm really spending time thinking about. It's very exciting for me to contemplate getting a new computer. My current machine is about five years old and, while it runs fine, it's slow, a bit temperamental when I ask too much of it, the battery is shot, and it's damn heavy.

It's also a Mac.

I would like to stay with a Mac in law school. Mr. Angst is a PC person and I believe I'll always have access to his laptop for exams. But for class, the library, research, note-taking, and any other task that will benefit from utter familiarity with my computer, I'd prefer a Mac.

So I have a question for all of you current students. Do you use a machine that was not "recommended" by your school (a Mac)? Do you have problems using such a machine? If you use a machine recommended by your school (a PC, probably a Dell), do many of your classmates use Macs? What things do you use your computer for, daily, that would be difficult if you had chosen a Mac? (Note that I'm not particularly worried about not having tech support from the school. I can troubleshoot myself in getting connected a network or figuring out how to print over the network.)

I am fully aware that this question is so premature it's ridiculous. But if I'm going to have to switch to a PC, I want to start getting used to the idea now, and start building up my speed on a PC. (I'm capable on a PC, but not speedy. I'm a big keyboard-shortcut person, and my lack of practice with shortcuts on a PC definitely slows me down.)

Saturday, January 08, 2005

one of the better shows on TV is getting a new season

Tonight, a new season of MI-5 starts on A&E.

If you haven't watched it, you should. All day today, A&E is airing previous episodes (I love these kinds of marathons) and the new season starts at 10/9 Central.

I'll admit it, I am a sucker for the spy shows. It helps that Alias and MI-5 are also well-produced and (mostly, in the case of Alias) well-written. (I say mostly because the season premiere of Alias, while conveying what it needed to convey, was a little too expository for me and glossed over some plots that were set up last season that now will apparently be forgotten. I guess JJ Abrams just couldn't get Lena Olin back.)

So, OK, back to MI-5. It's a British show, if the title didn't give that away. The actors are talented and, wonderfully, actually resemble normal people. The main female character actually has a nice, normal figure. I LOVE that, especially after watching Jennifer Garner look like a gay man in drag sometimes.

So, if you're bored today, sitting around on the couch for a few hours, tune in and catch some of the back episodes. If you can, watch the last old episode, because it sets up this coming season with a big cliffhanger.

What am I going to do next year (or, God, this fall) when I have to study and don't have time for TV—or money for Tivo. I'll have to become good friends with my VCR and learn to accept its shoddy recordings.

Friday, January 07, 2005

cool...or is it?

Annie Liebowitz is at it again.

I have let my Vanity Fair subscription expire, so I don't have a hard copy to inspect. I'd like to know, though, how they got Jar-Jar in there; I also note that Carrie Fisher is hiding behind Harrison Ford. Lucas seems to be posing as the pater familias.

I'm actually not sure what my opinion is of this. I may hold my judgment till Episode 3 actually comes out.


I just got into Northwestern!!!

To be honest, I didn't think I'd get in. And I did. Oh my God.

Two acceptances! Oh my good golly. I'm giddy.

MORE: I'm still sort of stunned. My numbers are pretty weak for Northwestern, and I wasn't sure my work experience would make up for my not-as-good-as-I-hoped LSAT. In fact, yesterday, I was having a daydream moment where I got into all the schools I applied to. And then I stopped wishing on a star and realized that getting into GW was a good accomplishment, and that I'd be fine going there and in fact might have no other choice because I might not get into my other top schools. My daydream moment morphed into me contemplating how I'd feel if that happened. You know what? I knew I'd be fine—I'd be enrolled in an excellent school on my way to a terrific job and career.

All of this I thought yesterday. In the time it took me to walk from the house to the mailbox.

And now I have an acceptance to a school I thought would be far beyond my reach once I got my LSAT score back in October.

I try to be an optimist, and I've been repeating to myself, over and over, If LSAC says less than x% get into this school with my numbers, well, someone has to be in that x%. Why not me? It's become a mantra of sorts: Why not me?

Today I found out. Yes, me. Me. If it doesn't get any better than this, the entire adventure will have been worth it.

not law related at all.

When someone has done something to hurt someone you love, the natural reaction is to be pissed, right? Pissed at that person, and perhaps cold, and distrustful. What, then, do you do when the person who was hurt (the person you love) tells you to be kind to the hurter, because that person is working through their own difficulties?

I am dealing with this situation in the literal, not the hypothetical, and I am not pleased about it. Frankly, I want nothing to do with the situation on the whole, but I have been asked to insert myself into it, in the hopes of helping along this person, as they work through their "issues."

(By the way, grammar purists, I am deliberately using the third-person plural to indicate gender neutrality, so don't get on my case. In fact, there is a historical case to be made for such use, but I won't get into that right now. And I refuse to use "em" which is about as contrived a usage as I can imagine.)

Returning to the topic, I can't help but wonder if the hurter acted as they did in order to push people away, and thus fulfill their deep belief that they are not worthy of love. OK, I don't wonder about this—I know, in fact, that this is the case—but it still infuriates me.

I'm being unfair this morning, of course, mostly because I am annoyed and feel put upon for being thrust into a position I am uncomfortable with. Deep down inside, of course, I know that being kind and open to this person is the right thing to do at this point. But what about the next time? And the time after that? How many times can you forgive? How long can you continue to support someone who isn't willing to do the work necessary to change behavior?

The hypotheticals are killing me this morning.

Thursday, January 06, 2005

i LOVE books

I want to do this (also here, and here).

My first book: The Years of Rice and Salt.

I'm still working through it, but I'll say this: I'm about 100 pages in, and it's just getting interesting. But really, really interesting.

This challenge could be fun. We'll see how much people will enjoy hearing about my 1L reading when school starts, though.

oh boy

The car has officially rolled over to 100,000 miles. Pictures (and video!) coming soon. I am a dork.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

need comments? check this out

I love this idea.

Now taking suggestions of whose blog I should harrass. Who wants to harrass my blog?

A list

  1. OU got spanked by the Trojans. Go USC! OU sucks.
  2. My car is about to roll over to 100,000 miles. I am keeping the camera in the car for the occasion.
  3. Another car-related note: I had the air filter changed with my last oil change, and suddenly my gas goes a lot further/farther. Note to self: buy five air filters at $10 each and change them whenever you are convinced the neighbors are siphoning gas from your car.
  4. Those little cans of Diet Coke? Cute, yes? Also slippery. Especially when trying to hold on to one as you are juggling a
    briefcase-sized purse, two sets of keys, and sunglasses when getting in the car. (Somehow this item became car related, too. Sucky.)
  5. Cold front on the way. Hurrah!
  6. First week back at work. Number of hours worked so far: 20. Number of hours spent in meetings: 3. Number of hours of meetings planned for this afternoon: 2. I predict 10 hours of meetings by the end of the week.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

rant over

OK, after a full day of directly addressing my many fears relating to educational debt, I feel much better. Sometimes I just need to get it all off my chest, you know?

And, honestly, it's just this portion of the journey that is freaking me out. I know that once all the loan papers are signed, the money is disbursed, and I am actually living on borrowed money, I will forget all about how scary it is. I'll be a law student! Everything will be OK! Right now, though, it's looming over me—it hasn't happened yet, all that debt, and, somehow, a part of me thinks it can be avoided. (It can't. I don't have $150K floating around to pay for my education.)

So here it is, my great revelation: law school is expensive (whether rightly or not). Everyone in law school ends up with some debt. (I'm currently pretending those full scholarship plus stipend people don't exist. It helps.) I will end up with debt. Mr. Angst will also end up with debt. But at the end of the tunnel is a good job with a high salary, or a public interest job with a loan repayment assistance plan. We will survive.

So if my parents refuse to fill out the stupid forms, I'll have to take out private loans for my entire education. Oh well. S**t happens. If they do fill out the forms, I'll probably still have to take out private loans for my entire education (or at least the first year). Hey, that's life. Either way, I get a JD, and that's really the big goal.

My fatalistic streak is out in full force today.

Monday, January 03, 2005

who writes this stuff?

"It is one thing to contact the dead. You are just meddling!"

Ah, White Noise was looking mildly interesting until that teaser.

ay me

Seriously? Why am I such a sap? I'm sitting on my couch getting choked up watching Volcano. Over the holidays, I nearly cried every time that "A Diamond is Forever" commercial came on. (You know the one—he says, I'd marry you all over again, and she says, Oh, come on.... and then, Mom? Dad? And he gets down on one knee and everyone sitting on the steps gets up and claps....God, it gets me every time; I'm tearing up just writing it.)

grudging respect

I'm pleased to note that Northwestern does not require parental information for financial aid.

One out of five ain't bad. (Actually, it should be two out of six, since UT doesn't require parental information, either, being a public university. But since I probably won't be going to UT, it's almost irrelevant.)

OK, this is just not right

Not only am I expected to pay out the nose for the LSAT, the LSDAS, law school reports, law school application fees, and, of course, transcripts, but I am also now expected to pay for the financial aid service the law schools REQUIRE me to use?

The College Board charges a registration fee plus $18 for each school I want to have my financial information sent to. So, let me get this straight: I'm applying for financial aid, but to do so, I have to shell out money? Isn't that sort of ridiculous?

This crap is really starting to piss me off.

Financial Foolery

I mentioned in my last post some of my frustration with the financial aid process for law school.

Big frustration #1: Most law schools that I am applying to require my parents' income tax information as well as my own and that of my husband.

I am...well, just slightly shy of 30, how about that?...and married. My husband and I own a home. I have been completely and 100% on my own since I graduated from college. I bought my first car without parental help (except that my dad drove me to the dealership and sat with me while I argued with the salesman). I rented my first apartment without parental help. I pay my bills on my own, get into debt and pay it off on my own, and somehow (gasp!) manage not to starve or go without clothing—on my own.

This does not seem to matter to law schools. GW allows you to waive the parental forms if you are over 30, but, again, I am not quite there. Another school has an option which requires you to sign an affidavit that you have not received money or gifts in kind of more than a certain amount from your parents in the last three years. That's a nice thing, particularly for those who are perhaps estranged from their parents. But I am not estranged from my parents, and my parents are generous. My parents paid for most of my wedding. My parents offer to buy us plane tickets for family events we otherwise would miss. So I wouldn't be able to sign that affidavit.

All of this is sort of moot, anyway, because even if my parents were helping me out right now by giving me money and supporting me, I still wouldn't be able to apply for need-based aid from these schools because my parents simply will not fill out the forms. My mother might, if I ask nicely enough. But my father won't. He didn't when I was an undergrad, and I guarantee he won't now.

My frustration with this aspect of law school financial aid knows no boundaries. It's unfair in so many ways. It prevents students from even applying, whether or not they will actually qualify for aid. See, the fact is that, at least for next year, I probably wouldn't qualify for any need-based aid anyway, just because of our current income. But I am locked out of even applying for it because my parents will likely refuse to fill out the forms.

A little voice in my head says, "Everyone takes out loans. Everyone pays them off. You can too!" And that's a nice, reasonable statement. But another voice keeps whispering to me that debt is bad, and that anything I can do to reduce my debt or take on less debt, I must do. Oh, but the Catch-22? I can't. Because, remember? My parents won't fill out the forms.

And they shouldn't have to. I'm sure some people are saying, "Well, just convince them to fill out the forms." But, see, this is the real problem! That law schools require married, older, self-supporting, self-sufficient adults to petition their parents for their income tax information. It's wrong! The only purpose to it is to reduce the financial aid applicant pool, and that's wrong, too. Law schools should come up with some other way to weed out the students whose parents are going to pay for their education and stop requiring those of us whose parents won't to subsidize someone else's education at the expense of our own financial solvency.

I'm just getting warmed up here, and if I keep going, I'll land on the subject of exorbitant law school tuition. I don't really want to go there right now, so I'll stop ranting. But good golly, I get hot under the collar over this. It makes me sick to my stomach—with both anger and nerves.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

hi ho, hi ho

...it's off to work I go—tomorrow. Two weeks of vacation, and I'm definitely not quite ready to get back in the saddle. Sigh.

We visited some family this weekend, and they are all pretty excited for me getting into GW. Heck, I'm still pretty excited. I'm just really pleased to know that my lower-than-expected LSAT score hasn't shut me out of schools I actually think I'll be happy at.

I think the next step is to start my financial aid documents. I have some rather harsh words about law school financial aid (including a very heated rant about some schools' requiring my parents' income tax forms), but I won't throw those out right now. I'm in a pretty good mood, and thinking about all that will just stress me out.

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Funniest thing heard in college football today:

Announcer #1: One of these teams will leave here tonight and be able to say, "Veni, vidi, vici."
Announcer #2: Ah, yes, that sweet wine.
Announcer #1: Um, not..no...
Me: :::snort:::

New Year's Resolutions

Last year, I had two resolutions. One was sort of unfair as a resolution: it was to get married, which was definitely going to happen, so probably shouldn't count.

The other was to find a new job, which I did within the first six weeks of the year. So by mid-February, I had achieved all my resolutions.

But if I dig a little deeper, I can acknowledge that the "find a new job" resolution was less about finding a new job and more about finding a path to happiness. My new job is good—and I am much happier than I was in my last job. But it's not the panacea I thought it would be. What I was really looking for was my own personal Renaissance. I took a remarkable writing seminar in the fall of 2003 and it sort of showed me what I was capable of, and how much I missed being that challenged in the rest of my life. The new job hinted at providing an outlet for the parts of me that were yearning to come out.

The new job, again, is worlds better for my mental health and allows me to be more creative and responsible than my old job. But my inner me still isn't getting the chance to fly. I still need a greater challenge.

Enter Law School. In some ways, deciding to go to law school was the real fulfillment of that New Year's Resolution. I had resolved not to find a new way to make a living, but to find a new path for my life. The job was a step in the right direction, but not the solution. I can't say for certain that going to law school will be the solution, either, but it's definitely another step in the right direction.

So for 2005, I have some resolutions. Some will be slightly unfair: they're the ones that are going to happen, probably no matter what. Others will be dependent on forces beyond my control. But these resolutions will hopefully shape this year for me.
  • I will start law school.
  • I will not fret about paying for law school, no matter how petrified I am about the debt.
  • I will be happy where I land, whether it's the highest ranked school I get into, or the highest ranked school I get into in the same city as the program Mr. Angst goes to.
  • I will remember that every city we are considering moving to has an airport and my family will always only be a short flight away.
  • I will make friends in our new home, and not get stuck spending all my free time (what little there will be) with Mr. Angst or in front of the TV.
  • I will also remember to spend quality time with my husband, when we are not both studying or working.
  • I will remember to stay in touch with the friends we leave behind, by emailing regularly, inviting them to read my blog, and making phone calls.
So these resolutions aren't really concrete (like, "I will lose 10 pounds," which I'd like to do but which I cannot ever resolve to do, so I won't resolve it), but they are important and will make 2005 a much happier year for me. If there's a resolution I could make that would encompass all of these, that would be it: I will be happy in 2005, knowing that I am making the right decisions for me.

Friday, December 31, 2004

Happy New Year all!

On New Year's Eve, I like to think back to all the things I've done in that year that were momentous (or that I did for the first time). Here's a portion of that list:
  1. Got married
  2. Visited Italy
    • spent two days trying to find the Spanish Steps
    • ate real bistecca alla fiorentina and it was GOOD
    • found "our" wine while having a snack in the Piazza della Signoria, which we now buy whenever possible
  3. Gave two weeks notice and started a new job (all my other job switches before have been preceded by other factors, like moving)
  4. Said goodbye to my mom when she moved several hundred miles away
  5. Saw a Wagner opera
  6. Was a bridesmaid to one of my bridesmaids
  7. Went to a "feting" (NOT a wedding)
  8. Decided to go to law school
  9. Visited Sedona and saw the red rocks
  10. Had my wisdom teeth out, five years late
  11. Said goodbye to my best friend when she moved several hundred miles away for culinary school
  12. Took the LSAT
  13. Debauched in Las Vegas for four days
  14. Applied to law school
  15. Hosted Thanksgiving at my house
  16. Found out I'm going to be an aunt next summer
  17. Got accepted to GWU, where I know I'd enjoy being a law student

Wow! That's a lot! There are some good things in there, and some sad ones, and some that will shape the direction of the next several years of my life. I'm a little scared when I realize that, YES, I have been accepted to law school and this whole adventure is no longer just a flight of fancy. It's actually going to happen. And you know what? I'm thrilled. Best of all, I have my soulmate with me and we're on this rollercoaster together.

Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 30, 2004


By the way, have I mentioned that tomorrow is New Year's Eve and I have been wearing flip flops and a t-shirt all day? Really ridiculous, and makes it not feel like New Year's Eve is tomorrow.

It also makes the menu planning I did this week sort of unusable. Nevertheless, tonight we are having osso buco. Hey, I've been craving some sort of braise. I may need to jack up the AC so the temperature is appopriate for digging into all that goodness, though.

celebration and relaxation

Yesterday, after my good news from GW, I drove about an hour to see my best friend. She recently moved away for culinary school, but came back to visit friends. Seeing her was the perfect topping to yesterday. We ate good food (tomato basil bisque, yum); had pedicures (and I had a manicure, also)—good girly fun; and then we had cocktails. The visit was too short, but they always are, and I think we're going to try for a spring trip to New Orleans, just to get some more good girly time in.

I also took my sister to dinner and gave her her Christmas present. She showed me her new apartment—her first all-by-herself apartment— and her tax ID number: my little sib is starting a business on the side. Her own apartment, her own business, and even a new friend-boy...these kids today, they grow up fast! I'm so proud of her.

This morning, as a treat to Mr. Angst, I got up early and made us breakfast: buttermilk pancakes. As an extra-special treat, I frothed up some milk for our coffee with my new milk frother, the best Christmas present ever. When we went to Italy on our honeymoon, breakfast at our hotels always included excellent coffee and warm, foamy milk. We've been trying to recreate that ever since, but I hadn't been able to accurately duplicate the foam. Now I can have foam whenever I want it! Hurrah!

My vacation is almost over, so I'm going to have to make the most of these last two days. Excuse me, I have a new book to read. (NOT the Glannon, though. Sorry.)

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

whahoo vahoo yippety skippety!!

Just found out I got into George Washington! It's a good day in the Angst household.

UPDATE: It only took me an hour to realize that I probably don't need to apply to American anymore. I think I'll save my $65 and focus on Chicago-Kent Honors.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004


I haven't written about the horrors in southeast Asia yet because, frankly, I'm still absorbing all of it. It is almost impossible, at such a removed distance (and from my extremely advantaged standpoint), to grasp not just the numbers—CNN says the death toll could top 60,000—but also the difficulties of getting information, traveling to remote locales, beginning to distribute aid, and rebuilding in that part of the world.

I know that it's terribly un-PC nowadays to ask strangers and psuedo-strangers to pray for anything—and I certainly don't want to offend my readers—but I really do ask that if you pray, pray for the people who are still waiting to be rescued, who are looking for their families, who are without shelter and food. And if you want to help, Larry has some links to aid organizations, as does Janine.

Monday, December 27, 2004

no more traveling!

I had my Northwestern interview this morning. I had to drive to a nearby city for it, so I was on the road again. Despite having to travel again so soon after coming back from a week away (and I am sure that sentence could read better, but I don't feel like working on it), the interview went off pretty much without a hitch. She was very nice and personable and made me feel very comfortable; we talked quite a bit about the environment at Northwestern, which I was starting to think might be too corporate or business-oriented (she disabused me of that notion, so hurrah!). Somewhere in the midst of it all, she told me that she felt I would fit in quite well at Northwestern, that my experience, etc., would make me a good match.

I hope the adcoms feel the same way! I'd be thrilled to get into Northwestern; it would take some of the pressure off of me if we end up going to Chicago for Mr. Angst.

So now I've finished everything I needed to do for my top five apps; they're all just waiting to be read, I guess. I suppose I should get cracking on that Chicago-Kent essay, and maybe send in my American application. :-) I have the week off—theoretically, I have plenty of time to do both. We'll see how realistic that is, though!

Sunday, December 26, 2004

oh, yes

I almost forgot! How exciting that Jeremy ended up in the New York Times (still on the front page, no less!) and yet even more exciting that AL and Jeremy are one and the same.

I admit it, I am one of those people who blogrolled both Jeremy and AL. I read both pretty regularly, and, nope, didn't pick up that they were one and the same. (I wonder what that says about my powers of observation.) I've always wondered, though, how real AL could be. Well written, definitely; fictional, absolutely.

Anyhoo, I think I just want to give a big "Hooray!" to Jeremy for landing in the Big Paper—and another "Hooray!" for keeping AL "secret" for as long as he did. He definitely deserves that book deal.

many things

In the last three days, so many things have happened, and I have not written about any of them. No, nothing momentously life-changing; just lots of events.

Christmas Eve with the Angst-in-laws was lovely. They have an old tradition of having fondue for dinner, so we all happily dunked into cheese and broth. We played Pictionary, and the men's team won (despite the women being more talented. We had harder cards). We opened gifts and giggled a lot and took pictures.

My sister-in-law (the soon-to-be-mom) gave me a copy of Civil Procedure by Joseph Glannon. I chuckled at the gift—it was humorous!—but she was dead serious. (She is an attorney and went to Harvard, so it wasn't too random a gift.) She gave me a smile and told me I held the key to understanding CivPro right in my very hands and that I'd be glad to have it next year. It was still a little funny—such a strange thing to receive, essentially, a textbook for Christmas, and be very happy about it!

On Christmas Day, we attended church, watched some football, and ate turkey, ham, potatoes, asparagus, and...something else....I can't remember, but the table was covered with food. Oh, and bread pudding. A true holiday feast. The meal sort of exemplified what I love about this season: it's a chance to gather together and eat, drink, talk, and enjoy being with each other. That's really what's most special about Christmas.

Of course, after lunch, we had to make our way to the airport—where the line to check in on Delta was longer than I've ever seen a line, anywhere. We opted to check in at the SkyCap, only to wait another half hour while they cleared up the security flag on our tickets. (I think it's because we flew into one city and out of another.)

By the way, Christmas Day is the day to travel if you love being on airplanes with LOTS of small children. I've never seen so many young ones in the airport, including on little girl who was draped atop her father's rollling suitcase, sound asleep.

By 11:35 pm, we were home again, home again, jiggety jig. Asleep by 12:30; up by 8 for choir, and now I'm heading off to Houston for the night: Northwestern interview in the morning. Not sure what to expect.

Thursday, December 23, 2004

making my list and checking it twice

  1. Christmas cards written and mailed: check and check
  2. Gifts wrapped and under the tree: 3/4 check and check
  3. Biscotti in the oven: check

We also saw Meet the Fockers which was, to be honest, pretty good. Babs really stole the show, and Dustin held his own (despite his skin resembling shoe leather). Good clean family fun.

  1. Finish wrapping gifts
  2. Start to pack up (we leave Saturday evening)
  3. Make fondue (Christmas Eve tradition)

A good day planned, all in all.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004


All Christmas gifts needed for this portion of the holiday festivities have been purchased. I still need to buy 8, maybe 9 gifts, but those can wait until we've returned home.

Also, I note on weather.com that the weather at home is unusually cold. This means that my plants are dead, sadly. Why would I have covered them before we left? It never gets cold before Christmas. Plus, they'd have died from lack of sunlight. Well, now they'll be dead from freezing. I'm a bad plant mom.

I have finished my American application, but not submitted it yet. I need to print it out and review it before I send it off. After I do that, I'll work on my Chicago-Kent essay. (Seeing as all Christmas shopping is done, I don't have anything to do tomorrow and Friday morning.) Oh, and I am going to help my mother-in-law set up a recipe website. And write and mail Christmas, er, Holiday cards.

OK, so I do still have a lot to do and little time in which to do it. Sigh. Vacation always goes by too quickly, especially when I spend so much of it sleeping in.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

last post of the day, i promise

TV times on the East Coast confuse me. I'm a mid-country kind of girl, and ten o'clock is the hour for TV dramas. But not over here, apparently.

How do people get any rest over here? Good TV isn't over until 11pm, and then they have the news to watch!

It's a good thing I'm on vacation.

lack, serious lack, of motivation

I need to work on SOMETHING. Either my Chicago-Kent essay or my Christmas cards. I am not doing either. Or I could work on my American application, but I need to do that on Mr. Angst's computer, and he's using it.

Instead of working, in fact, I am watching Gilmore Girls with my inlaws and my husband and generally enjoying not doing anything else. (Of course, Gilmore Girls is currently showing an extra-marital post-sex scene, which is moderately uncomfortable with the inlaws being across the room from me. Urk.)

I could also wrap Christmas gifts.

Nah. I think I will go take my shoes off, though.


Northwestern's online status check is finally back up, but the information is moderately incorrect.

For instance, my status shows that my application was received on October 15. This is completely wrong, since I didn't start work on my apps till the beginning of November.

It also lists me as being complete, but I haven't had my interview yet. So I can only hope that their system upgrades are causing some glitches. I didn't go through all the waiting to get my interview set up only to have it not count for squat!

Meanwhile, I haven't been working on my two additional apps as I promised myself I would this week. I haven't even been working on my Christmas cards, which I also said I'd get done this week. I've been basically lazing about like, well, like a woman on vacation. I can't really complain. At least I've bought 3.5 Christmas presents. A little productivity is better than none.

Sunday, December 19, 2004

everybody's havin' babies but me

I am going to be an aunt next summer. I am VERY excited!

Also, it might snow tomorrow.

Days left till Christmas: 5
Gifts I've bought: .5
Gifts left to buy/make/assemble: 14

I am in deep poo.

Friday, December 17, 2004

one more for the evening

I know, I'm on vacation. Blogging shouldn't be a priority. But I would like to say that our mini-trip to DC has been great fun so far. I am having a very good time. I have seen a good friend from college (who I didn't see for five years, saw two months ago at our reunion and again tonight, but you'd never know that and we picked up just as if we talked every week, and that's kind of weird but also very cool), visited some beautiful campuses, eaten good food and drunk good drink. Mr. Angst has had good interviews, and the weather has been lovely.

So nice has our trip been, in fact, that we may stay an extra day. (This is the Angst-in-laws doing—they are bringing an overnight bag when they come up tomorrow, "just in case.") I'd be happy to do that and have the chance to go see American tomorrow.

In any case, this has been a lovely beginning to my winter vacation. If only I had gotten more sleep last night.

this post brought to you by the letters D and C and the number 4

Four being how many hours of sleep I got last night in our trek to the city of D and C: Washington.

Or, actually, Baltimore. Last night. Tonight, DC. It's sort of confusing.

Anyway, if you were one of the GULC or GWU students madly studying (or actually taking) for exams while I poked around in your cherished study spots, I send you (1) big apologies and (2) waves of good luck.

Also, I'm complete at GWU! Yahoo!

Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

something I learned about myself today

I am not really a phone person.

I like having phone conversations with friends and family when I need to catch up. I even like MAKING those calls. But I am not so much a fan of my phone ringing off the hook with calls from friends and family who just want to chat at all hours of the day. It frustrates me when I look at my caller ID and see that X, who I have talked to three times in the last two days, is calling AGAIN, and I know the conversation will take forever because X will go off on tangents every third word.


It's 40-something degrees outside, and the AIR-CONDITIONING just blew on in my office.

Come on, people, figure it out.

Meh! &#*%@*$

I should be happy—UT has finally ordered my LSDAS report. However, they have somehow managed to LOSE the copy of my resume that I sent them when I sent my application.

See, I submitted my app electronically via LSAC, but forgot to attach my resume. So I just sent my resume in an envelope with their "race-gender affirmation" letter.

And I guarantee I know what happened. Some $8 an hour employee opened my envelope, saw my affirmation letter and some extra paper, and didn't know what the extra paper was and probably threw it away.

Now I have to scramble to get a my resume together—by which I mean find the file on my computer that is the CORRECT resume for UT—put it in the mail TODAY before we LEAVE TOWN, and HOPE and PRAY UT gets it this time.

I'd call, but I'm not sure I woulnd't end up talking to a moron on the phone. Or at the very least, someone who is too excited about their impending Christmas vacation to bother helping me.


UPDATE: OK, I was a little peeved when I wrote that. I did call, the woman I spoke to was helpful, and informed me that the only stuff that shows on their online information page right away is the stuff they got with my application. Since I sent my resume under separate cover, it's not yet been associated with my application. She even took my name and will make a note on my file that my resume is around there, somewhere.

When I get back from the holidays, I'll follow up to make sure all is well.

NOW I can be happy about this! Yay! UT requested my report!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

this makes me all mushy

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

happy fun plus arrogance

Tonight, I have been madly helping Mr. Angst with his personal statement. That is to say, in the grandest tradition of writing instructors, I have been gently (but swiftly, since he has to fax it tomorrow) guiding his very good core statement toward a clean and precise written document.

I have had such fun! I love the red pen, the molding of language; I so enjoy seeing what can be and encouraging it to come out.

Yes, I know, this makes it sound like I should be a writing teacher. And I'll admit that a big part of my law school personal statement was about eventually hoping to teach lawyers the importance and impact of language. But I also know that just teaching kids and adults to be more effective writers wouldn't satisfy me quite enough. I think I need more than that, I need to know something better is coming from what I do.

Maybe that's why I've enjoyed tonight so much. Mr. Angst's plan is to go into a program that has a great deal of moral merit; he wants to do something great and wonderful and important and I am so proud of him for that. And I know that the writing I am helping him with will help with that goal. So it makes me very happy. Also, I love him, so that contributes to my good mood.

I feel good right now. Very good. Proud, and happy, and (a little) arrogant about how good I am. ::::sizzle::::
Look, I know that, as far as many people are concerned, Lemony Snicket is Harry Potter's bastard stepchild (and I'll admit, I have not read the Lemony Snicket books), but could the producers of the new movie NOT use the same font on teasers as they did for the Harry Potter movies?


I've been in meetings all day and no one really wants to read about them, so I'll just give you the funniest thing I've read in about a week.

I only laugh because I recognize myself in this story. Thanks for the giggle, Milbarge.

Monday, December 13, 2004

it IS going to be a good week!

My dear friend from college who I am excited to see on Friday in DC just got engaged. And suddenly (well, not suddenly, but again) I realize that I am at that age where my friends are growing up and getting married. Every time I get a wedding invitation or birth announcement in the mail, I go through this same sense of anomie: How can we have grown so far, so fast?

I do not think of myself as particularly old. Of course I am not old—I have not even passed 30—so I use the word "old" in a more metaphysical sense. I always seem to think of myself as younger than I am. For instance, my family thought I had waited a really long time to get married; I thought I was almost not old enough. I still sometimes think it's OK to shop in the juniors section at the mall, not because of sizes but because the clothes are cuter.

The other day, I looked at my refrigerator door and noticed that, instead of crazy pictures from bars and parties that have always decorated my kitchen, my magnets hold wedding pictures and, even more shockingly, pictures of my friends' kids. Oh my God, I thought, I have become my parents.

I have crossed the threshold. I am an adult. When we get together, my friends and I talk about home repair and taxes; we talk about the rising cost of insurance and whether or not Horizon milk in the paper box lasts longer than the store brand in the plastic jug. We don't gossip about who is sleeping with who, because everyone has a significant other. We watch our language because, chances are, someone's kids are in the next room.

So, even while I am thrilled and oh-so-excited for my friend, who deserves this happiness so much, I am also a bit wistful for the days when she and I were young and foolish, living on yogurt and ice cream in a small apartment in New York City. I feel a twinge of some indescribable loss, knowing that we really have left that life behind, in favor of the great adult unknown.

I never was one of those people who thought my youth would be "the best time of my life," so I know this will pass. But for the moment, I just can't help but feel a bit sad.

maybe it will be a good week

This morning, I got a call from my Northwestern interviewer (finally! yay!). Apparently, in my last email to her, I transposed some numbers in my phone number, so she couldn't get a hold of me. Thankfully, she took a look at my signature, saw the correct number, and tried again.

I'm set to meet with her two days after Christmas. We'll be returning from the Angst-in-laws' on Christmas night, I'll sing at church on the 26th, then I'll drive to Houston and stay with my brother. He lives five minutes from her office—better and better! She sounds quite friendly, so I am heartened. I've read (on the boards) a few horror stories, so I've been a little nervous.

By the by, the trip home was lovely. I spent oodles of quality time with my grandparents, saw my aunts and uncles who still live in that town, and attended the funeral of the young man I knew who was killed in Iraq. The funeral was packed, and the local paper did a number of stories on him and his family. Part of me was bothered by all of that—there were people at the funeral who didn't even know him!—and part of me was glad for it. See, on the one hand, it felt a little exploitative, particularly of his family, for this very personal tragedy to be all over the news. But on the other hand, the entire city seemed to be celebrating this young man's life, and that's a wonderful thing. So I am still sort of mixed up about it all.

My sister was also there for the funeral, and we had a very nice afternoon together, something that is quite rare. I was glad for that, too.

All in all, the weekend was nice, Monday morning is turning out pretty good, and best of all, I start my vacation in four days! Now, if only I could get rid of the low-grade headache I've had for three days, things would be perfect.

Friday, December 10, 2004

something ALWAYS goes wrong

I realized at 11:45 am today that I left my debit/check card in the ATM machine last night.

Since I'm set to leave town in a few hours, this was not good news. I have had to cancel the card, order a new one, and procure a "temporary" ATM-only card so I can get money this weekend if and when I need it.

This means I now will have to interact with cashiers at gas stations, the one thing I always hate doing. Paying cash anywhere else is fine, but at gas stations, I have to go inside, stand in line behind the guy buying a quart of oil and a case of beer, and the cigarettes that just happen to still be in the stockroom instead of above the counter. And then I have to say, "I want to fill up my tank. Here's a $20; I'll come back for my change." And then I have to go back inside and wait in line AGAIN after I've filled up.

The best thing that ever happened to gas stations was pay-at-the-pump.

OOPS: OK, I apparently can use my temporary ATM card at gas stations. This fact, though, does not ameliorate (50¢ word!) my annoyance with losing my check card.

on the road again

Mr. Angst is camping this weekend with some of his college friends/fraternity brothers, so I am taking the opportunity to road trip to the coast to see my grandparents. I can do some pre-Christmas visiting, go to a funeral I didn't want to miss, and see the water.

I grew up on the coast—hence this trip is also a trip back "home" though none of my parents still live there—and adore the ocean. There's something about being able to gaze out at a seemingly endless expanse of water that really soothes me. I don't necessarily like getting in the water (which is to say, I could happily live in a place where the water was too cold or dirty or dangerous to get into, as long as I could still stand on the beach or a cliff or a shore of some kind and look at the water).

This is noticeably distinct from the way Mr. Angst sees water. He grew up in a lake-and-river-ridden place, and his joy is not in looking at water, but at standing in it. Preferably with a beer. I can live without that, so usually he stands and I sun when we trip to the lake. As a water source, the lake doesn't do much for me—I can always see the other side, and that other side is always only half a mile away.

No, give me wide stretches of blue, gray, green, with or without waves. I particularly like it when the sky and the sea are the same color and you can barely tell where one ends and the other begins. I also like the sunrises and sunsets when the clouds are fluffy and full but rest right on the horizon. And even the less-than-beautiful days, with scudding clouds and choppy water, make me happy.

So this weekend will be a treat. Expect no posting from me, though, as a trip home is somehow always a trip backwards, technologically. No computers and no internet access at my grandparents'. Somehow, even that is a bit of a treat.

Thursday, December 09, 2004


Last night Mr. Angst and I sat at one of our favorite local restaurants and did math. We were trying to figure out how it was that he needed to get an 88 on yesterday's final exam to get an A in that class. He didn't—it turns out he did his math wrong and only needed a 72, which means his post-BA 4.0 streak is probably holding—but I think our waiter was startled by the page of numbers I was scribbling on when he came to take our orders.

At any rate, it got me thinking about grades. Mr. Angst had what I would consider the typical undergraduate experience at a big state university. He enjoyed himself and did the bare minimum for a while, only realizing in his last few semesters that grades do matter. His final degree GPA is not stellar, but it's not awful. It's...average. He, however, is not average, and has spent a lot of time since then proving it. Hence the 4.0 streak since he got his BA.

Last night, when he thought he was going to end up with a B in this one class because the exam was stupid (it was, believe me), he was really bummed. And on one level, I get that. But another part of me was thinking, hey, a B isn't bad.

I have a lot of ambivalence about grades. On the one hand, I am intensely competitive and hate to do poorly. But on the other hand, if I don't do as well as everyone else because everyone else is just plain smarter than I am, I can handle it. This explains my own GPA trend. I started out OK. Everyone told me that I would leave my rather small high school, where I was a big fish in a little pond, and get into college and discover that I was now in the middle of a pond with a bunch of other fish exactly as big as me, and some that were bigger. I took that to heart and wasn't really upset with myself for not acing my freshman year. My relative mediocrity was fine with me—everyone else was just better at those subjects than I was, or smarter, or a better writer. As I meandered through my major coursework, though, my GPA went up and up and up, proving to me that I had found my niche. My instincts were spot on: at some things I was better than others, and I just happened to be good enough at many things to end up with what I thought was a really amazing GPA.

Of course now, with applying to law school, I wish I had aced my freshman year. And my sophomore year, too. My GPA is good, and in fact remarkable for my school which has absolutely no grade inflation, thanks guys. But compared to the competition, it's just OK again. And I have a problem with that. Because I know my GPA is probably better than it looks. I'm not getting shunted down the admissions ladder because everyone else is better than me, or smarter, or a better writer. I'm getting shunted down because GPAs, despite LSACs claims, are NOT normalized. And that really bothers me. It hurts. It sucks. I admit it, I'm pissed about it.

(I'm even more pissed when people with my same GPA apologize for their grades, like it's something to be ashamed of. Seriously? Look around you and be thankful for your abilities.)

All I can do is hope and pray that when my apps get reviewed, the readers take the time to actually look up my alma mater and see what kind of place it is, and put my grades in perspective. Because I really believe that, everytime some prof on the admissions committee tosses my stuff in the "ding" pile for no other reason than my numbers, her law school loses something. (No, not just me as a student.) The "numbers game" is absurd—particularly because it's driven by the "rankings game"—and the eventual losers aren't the schools who drop in rank, it's the schools that give up good students because their numbers don't fit the model.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004


Dear National Deli Restaurant Chain,

Look, I know you guys at the To-Go counter were in the weeds when I walked in at 1:20. I tried to be respectful of that, and ordered clearly and quickly. And then I stood back because I was in no big rush. I knew I'd just end up eating my sandwich at my desk.

But somehow, my order must have had "Rush" written on it in invisible-only-to-me ink. I know this because the girl who packed up my bag was throwing things in it so fast that she tipped the container of au jus—just enough to dampen the bottom of the bag. And then she shoved my sandwich and chips on top of the container—crushing my chips, by the way—compounding the problem, and what happened then? Poof! went the bottom of the bag and Splash! went the au jus all over my pants. Glad I'm wearing black, machine washable pants today!

I can't complain too much; after all she was very apologetic and gave me lots of extra napkins and a sturdier, albeit ginormously large, new bag with handles. No, the big problem was the sandwich itself. And for this, I have to look at the sandwich assembly line guys.

Guys. I know, I know, how much it sucks to be swamped with the lunch crowd. All those people, grumbling because they're hungry. The phone ringing off the hook. Cashier girl screeching about waiting To-Go orders. I know you were probably flustered when you made my food, and that's how you managed to stack all the lettuce on one side of my bun and all of the roast beef on the other. And I know you were stressed when you flopped the tomato on top of it all so it would stick halfway out of the lettuce side of the sandwich. I sense that you were probably pissed off at someone, too, maybe your ex-girlfriend, because you wrapped my round sandwich into a baguette shape. I feel ya, man. I do. But for the love, please don't take it out on the food! Oh, my poor sandwich, reduced to a soggy, mushy, couldn't-dip-you-in-the-jus-if-I-wanted-to heap of sadness!

For my sake, and for the sake of the poor, innocent sandwiches, take a few deep breaths, relax your shoulders, and chill. We'll all be a lot happier, with you and with our sandwiches.

trip planning

I've been busily making hotel reservations and checking out transportation options for next weekend's jaunt to DC. We start in Baltimore, where I've been searching for a decent hotel next to Johns Hopkins that we'll actually be able to get to in the middle of the night when our plane arrives. Needless to say, we don't want to spend $50 on a taxi, so I'm thinking SuperShuttle.

Being the semi-anal woman that I am, I desperately want to know NOW exactly how I am going to get from whatever hotel we stay at near Johns Hopkins to the train station in downtown Baltimore so I can zip into DC for an info session at GULC on Friday morning. Somehow I think I'll end up asking the front desk at whatever hotel we stay at. Locals always know best. It doesn't calm me down to know that I'll have to wait, though.

Of course, once we get into DC, it seems everything will be cake. We have a hotel in DC already (in Foggy Bottom), I have a couple of friends to get in touch with for meals, and I can definitely find my way around on the Metro. When we leave, we just have to figure out where to meet the Angst-in-laws, who will be driving into the city to get us and whisk us away for Christmas week.

I'm excited to be planning my first (real) campus visits.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004


I did not go to work yesterday. The alarm went off and I sort of felt like the guy in Office Space—I just couldn't comprehend that I might need to get out of bed. Of course, in my case, this was due to exhaustion, not weird, leftover hypnosis.

At any rate, I spent the day being a vegetable (more or less). I worked on my grandmother's newsletter some, and got it 98% finished. On schedule to go to the printer Thursday and go out in the mail sometime mid-next week. Thank God! I was starting to worry that I'd have to trek it to my in-laws with us for the holidays and send it from there.

Also yesterday, I thought I'd put up the Christmas tree. I started working at that around 1pm. I pulled the boxes out of storage and that very minor task—we don't have that much Christmas stuff—completely wore me out. So I lay back down on the couch and read a good book, The Grey King. A quick book, too, since it's about 100 pages long. I recommend it, as long as you won't feel silly buying fiction in the "young adults" section of the bookstore. I don't, so I own the entire Dark is Rising Sequence. I bought mine at Half Price Books.

Moving on, I did eventually finish getting our tree put together and somewhat decorated. Mr. Angst brought home Chinese, and I recuperated from whatever had laid me low.

I also received two emails from schools in Chicago informing me that they've received my stuff. Thank God! Now if only Texas would see its way to requesting my report, I'd feel much more comfortable. On deck: additional essay for Chicago-Kent honors program. Deadline: sometime in the week before Christmas, when I'll be starved for stuff to do while at the in-laws.

Sunday, December 05, 2004

I wish I could say I allowed myself to take the weekend off following two days of bad news. Unfortunately, life tends to interfere when you least want it to, and I had things to take care of.

I spent Saturday morning teaching my father how to download pictures from his camera—a task I hope no one else ever has to repeat. I only succumbed to his request because I knew if I didn't, someone else would have to do it, and they probably wouldn't be as nice about it. The end result was good—I mean, I've never seen someone get so excited by rotating pictures and organizing them into subfolders—but it was still a chore. Today, I've pounded away at my grandmother's Christmas newsletter. Thankfully, since this is my third year to do it, I found it pretty easy to fall into a rhythm and get half of it done in a couple of hours. I'll finish up the rest tomorrow or Tuesday.

It seems, then, that I've been terribly productive even while feeling of out of sorts. I always seem to fall into that trap—being idle usually only makes me feel worse. Sometimes I wish I could just take a day off of being a responsible young woman, though, and not feel guilty for eating ice cream and drinking wine and watching bad movies.

On two good notes, I am going to visit my grandparents next weekend (or this weekend, I am never sure which adjective to use when referring to the weekend coming up that is not the weekend we are in the midst of). It's always nice to see them, especially when there aren't dozens of other relatives around. I'll also get lots of other visiting in while I'm there, and since it will be before Christmas, people won't be as stressed out and busy. I might even score some peanut butter chocolate bonbons from my aunt.

The other good note is that Mr. Angst and I have cancelled what was going to be a 48-hour jaunt to Lake Tahoe on New Year's Day (to quickie-visit family). Who needs to hop on a plane at 7 am with a wicked hangover? Instead, we rescheduled those plane tickets for use on our first anniversary in late January. We'll be travelling to Chicago to visit campuses and explore the city. I figure the weather can't be any worse than at the end of January, so if I can make it through that weekend, I can figure out a way to tolerate the cold for a whole season. I hope.

Friday, December 03, 2004

it's a banner week around here

My strength is really being tested this week; I just found out that a young man I grew up with (whose mother was my art teacher in elementary school) was killed in Iraq on Wednesday. He was 23 and withdrew from business school in the spring when he found out he was going to be deployed. He had a beautiful young wife, and a tremendous future.

I know he was proud to serve his country, but I can't help but feel angry at the loss waste of a beautiful life.

More: In looking up information about this, I discovered that at least three more young men I grew up with or babysat for—we all grew up in the same church—are also serving, most overseas. It's not surprising to me that they are serving, since we grew up in a military town, but somehow it's all hitting home for me right now.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

divine angst

This makes me very sad. I've been sort of moderately following this case, and I was hoping for a different (though admittedlu rather unlikely) outcome.

I know that churches are institutions that must answer to their constituents, much like politicians. But I always hold out hope that the leadership will hear the call of their faith and make the difficult decision (as this Episcopal priest did in the summer of 2003 when that church voted on gay clergy).

Back to the original news story. The minister on trial said it better than I could: "God is still going to call qualified gay and lesbian people into ministry at our church and other denominations." And the more those qualified gay and lesbian Christians hear the call, the harder it will be to deny their callings and the value of their ministries. At least, that is what my faith tells me must happen.

bad news, bad habits

I received some unsettling family news today. In response, I am coping the worst way I know how: copious amounts of good, French red wine, leftover braised chicken, and a frightening amount of fluffy arborio rice.

I am watching Law & Order, alternating during commercials with CSI. I am ignoring the other family obligations I have—my grandmother's Christmas letter—because, frankly, I can't really deal with it right now.

As bad news goes, this piece wasn't all that dreadful or even surprising. But the impact of it has left me pretty mentally incapacitated. I mean, I can think fine, and I even did several hours of work after hearing the news. But I don't really have any brain left to finagle with Christmas newsletters, outline additional essays for applications I haven't submitted, or even read a good novel. It's a TV and overindulgence kind of night.


commentary redux

Richard Ames commented below about my social commentary post:
Actually, most of our public officials compromise quite a bit. Perhaps you see what you think you should see, but in reality it's just not there...I know it's the in-thing to be negative about government and politics, but to say pols are uncompromising simple ignores the facts. They are extremely compromising.

Frankly, I did say "at least publicly and in the media" that pols don't compromise. I know a great deal of compromise goes on in government, but it's also very much the in thing for politicians to put a face of non-compromise out to the public. Denise got it:
"...our politicians use the public forum to articulate seemingly intractable positions..."

And that's the problem with politics in our country. It doesn't matter that compromise is going on in the offices and conference rooms. The public view is of Party A and Party B fighting to be in control. We see our elected officials playing schoolyard bullies, and therefore we think it's OK to do it, too. I haven't had a civil conversation about politics with anyone in my family for close to ten years. Why? Because they are all convinced their side is "right" and my side is "wrong." Why? Because their side tells them so! (My side does the same thing. If it's even accurate to say I have a "side.") Whether their side and my side are actually meeting in the middle to do good work appears to be irrelevant.

The American people are treating politics as black and white (red and blue)—and these ideas are fattened by our ridiculous, sensationalist media—but the politicians aren't trying to disabuse them of the notion by clarifying what really goes on. Instead, as an example, John Kerry gets lambasted for his senatorial voting record because it seems to "flip-flop." Yet all he's been doing is that good work of compromise! It's really no-win in the public eye.

NB: Politics causes me the most ambivalence about going to law school in DC. I really don't want to be in an environment where politics is the currency and if you don't want any, you're out in the cold.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Check out The Political Compass.

My results: Economic Left/Right: -2.75, Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.21

What are your results?

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

wiffle waffle

I go back and forth on being excited to move somewhere new next year. Today, I am pretty excited about it, mostly because I've just gotten back in touch with an old friend who lives in DC.

But a week ago, I was near miserable thinking about it. All I could imagine was the difficulty of moving, the greater debt we'll take on, the being far, far away from my family. My stomach was churning.

So I'm back and forth. And I guess that's to be expected—this is a pretty major change we're planning to make. I've always lived close to my family except for my four years of undergrad. Even then, I was home at least once a semester plus Christmas and the summer. We're all pretty close. Oddly, I've begun working on my grandmother's Christmas newsletter (it features pictures of all their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren with little blurbs...it's very visually friendly) and you'd think that would make me more nostalgic and upset about moving far away. But instead, today, I am excited about the future. Maybe I know in my heart how supportive my family will be.

Totally unrelated: I really like the Family Guy. Seriously funny show. Adult Swim rocks. Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.

Part of all this reflection is that Mr. Angst is diving into the real work of his applications and the "eventuallies" are becoming the "nows." We've been coasting along on the assumption that both him and me will get into schools in all the cities we're looking at and suddenly I think we're both very aware that the plan may not work out that way. And I don't really know what we'll do if the plan doesn't work out as we hoped. So, I'm excited about moving and change today perhaps because I'm really avoiding the possibilities.

social commentary

Thanks to Shelley for this lovely article.

At choir rehearsal not long ago, I had a conversation with a seminarian who was explaining to me why he was voting for Bush. His reasons? He admired the President's faith, yes, but more important to him was Bush's stance on abortion and the war. I replied that I could not vote for Bush because of his stance on the death penalty, his blindness to the complete inadequacy of No Child Left Behind, and his odd fiscal irresponsibility. It was all very civil, and while neither of us could agree with the other, we spoke with respect and openness.

Why can't more political conversations go that way?

We are not—and I am not—black and white, red and blue. There are too many things going on in our country for me to take a one-sided view of all of them. Like Heidi, I sometimes consider myself a bleeding heart liberal. Also like Heidi, though, I am willing to make concessions on some issues for the sake of others. It is too bad that our elected officials (at least publicly and in the media) do not present the same face of compromise.


Two schools that I've submitted apps to have not in any way acknowledged their receipt. This makes me nervous, although just a bit. When will they ask for reports? When will they tell me they've received my stuff? When when when?

When I applied to college, yea so many years ago, one of my applications was, apparently, never considered. It was very odd. I sent everything in along with my check, and I never heard anything else from that school. I wasn't particularly interested in that school, so I didn't fret about it. But law school is a bit different.

For one, I think I'm not really supposed to call these schools to ask about the status of my application. But without calling, I am at the mercy of the schools as far as being informed that my applications have been received. One school got a check from me, so I can always monitor my checking account to see if it's cleared. The other, though, was paid online when I submitted. They have my money, but I have no way of knowing when they'll take a look at my application.

I feel sort of helpless, and I don't like that.

Monday, November 29, 2004

addiction turned foul

I fully admit that I am addicted to Las Vegas. It's eye and mind candy, totally worthless TV, really.

But tonight, they have reached a new low. This must be the "exposition" episode of the season. The dialog is wretched, the plot is contrived, and, for God's sake, the Polyphonic Spree guests.

I actually kind of like this show, but this episode pretty much guarantees it's going to get cancelled. Dammit, why don't they hire me to write their shows? I'd do a better job, Mr. Angst would do a better job, the kid down the street would do a better job.

Sigh. TV sucks.

full plates

I have about a million things to do in the next two and a half weeks.

OK, that's exaggerating—but only a little bit. I have to begin and finish my grandmother's Christmas newsletter, which will be tricky since no one in my family has sent me any photos. I have some I've taken, but not many. Considering it takes about a week to get the thing to the printer and from thence out into the mail, I am seriously screwed.

It has to be out in two and a half weeks because we leave on the evening of the 16th for DC to visit some campuses before we make our way to the in-laws for Christmas. We fly into BWI super-late and will have to stay somewhere in Baltimore that night so Mr. Angst can make his 11am appointment in that city; I will probably take a train into DC to visit Georgetown (information session at 11, not sure how useful it will be). Then Mr. Angst will join me in DC and we'll both go take a look at GW. And then we have time to kill. I'm hoping we can send our luggage for the week ahead to the Angst-in-laws, and store whatever overnight bags we have in DC at the train station. But it's been a while since I've been to DC and I don't know if that's a good possibility.

So, DCers, here are a couple of several questions:
  1. Where's a cheapish place we can stay (for one night) in the District that's convenient to Georgetown and GW and a Metro stop?
  2. Are there, in fact, storage lockers or the like at the major stations? (I'm thinking Union Station, particularly, since that's where we'll be coming in from Baltimore on the MARC train.) There are, in fact, lockers at Union Station, as I suspected there would be. It remains to be seen if they will be large enough for luggage. No clue about stations in Baltimore.
  3. Are there other things we should put on our itinerary for Friday afternoon/Saturday morning? Things we should see if we're very seriously contemplating moving to DC for school?
  4. Any recommendations for rail/bus/Metro passes for our two-day stay? We won't need round-trip MARC tickets, I don't think, but what will we want for the Metro in DC?
  5. At present, I believe the Angst-in-laws are going to drive to pick us up on Saturday (it'll be a few-hour round-trip for them, so we can't really stay with them), but if we need to rent a car and drive-and-drop, how tough might that be? This was a stupid question, as I know I can rent a car just about anywhere. Forgive.

These are lots of questions, sure, and they probably reveal me to be a bit of a worry-wart. But any advice would be much welcomed.

Meanwhile, I still haven't heard back from my Northwestern interviewer, which makes me a bit nervous. Time is short!

Saturday, November 27, 2004

Yeah, I took a blogging break. Between the all-day kitchen-fest that was Thursday, and the all-day football-fest that was Friday, I was just plain pooped. Didn't bother to get out of my pjs today until 3:30.

We just returned from a nice dinner at my aunt and uncle's. They live something less than an hour away in a brand, spanking new subdivision of houses with no easement, whose designs repeat every third lot. "Starting in the 120's!" Not terribly enticing.

This aunt and uncle have just recently returned from nine years (or thereabouts) in Germany, where my uncle was stationed. What did my aunt talk about all night? Germany. German wine. German tchotckes. German sugar tablets for your coffee. And Dutch veterinary clinics. Good golly! The things I never wanted to know about Germany! We escaped as the other aunt and uncle who were at dinner pulled out the dominos for family game time.

Lest you think I am a terrible person, the evening really was nice. I pull out the sarcasm when I talk about family because, well, families are messy and confusing sometimes. But they are still family, and they understand and know you like few people do. All but one of my mother's siblings was at dinner, and I treasure that these men and women who watched me grow up are so close and still want to spend time with one another. If there's one thing I am always thankful for this time of year, it's family, foibles and all. These times make our plans for the next three years somewhat more difficult to stomach, as I'm sure we'll end up far away and visits will be rare and never long enough.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

gobble gobble

Happy Thanksgiving!

We've been through half of one turkey and half of another; the other halves are tupperwared up and put away. We've been through half of two pies. We've been through half a pot of coffee. And now we're looking to rent a movie.

I'm beat! But it's been lovely. Happy Thanksgiving, all.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

holiday time!

My mommy is here, she just called to say they were on the ground, picking up their rent car.

I, however, am at work. Phbbt. I am hoping we get a half-day reprieve—sometimes that happens, but it has to come from the top (and I work for a pseudo-government institution, so that means from the governor) and he never makes up his mind until around 11:30. Or at least, they never tell us till then.

I have things to do today—I need a new sweater, I need to buy some liquor (vodka and Rumpelminz), and I need to make some pastry shells. Oh, and also we have the Thanksgiving Eve service my choir is singing in tonight. Too much to do, so little time. I wish I'd remembered the pastry last night, because it could be resting in the fridge right now. (I did not go shopping last night because the sky looked very omninous and my umbrella was at home.)

In other words, I think the next several hours are going to be mildly stressful. What else would I expect, though, hosting Thanksgiving with two sets of parents? Stress is my life-force, though. I will rise to the challenge.

Update: It appears a reprieve is not going to happen. I recall reprieves happening every year that I've been here, but our office manager says it never happens. I don't know what the heck is going on, but I'm leaving at 12:30, when I get my four hours in. And that's that. I can suck up the four hours of vacation time it'll cost me.

Update 2: OK, I went back and looked at my electronic timesheets for the last several years, and it appears we have never gotten a reprieve on the day before Thanksgiving—I have always just taken that half day off. Weirdly, we do usually get a reprieve on Good Friday, which seems sort of odd since this is the government we're talking about. We are a red state, though. And I am always glad for that half day when we get it. At any rate, I'm at home, making pastry and waiting for my mom to get here.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

creepy weather

It's been raining forever here. Today, it looked like it might let up as I drove to work. There was no actual water falling from the sky, and I didn't need to turn my lights on to see the road at 8:15 in the morning.

But now the sky has blackened. The thunder is so heavy the windows in my office (which is in a four-story solid brick building) are vibrating. I just heard our office manager tell some coworkers who parked outside to move their cars to the garage because hail is on its way.

I generally stave off the Seasonal Affective Disorder until January, when the dark days and cold weather just overwhelm me. But if I don't get some sun here soon, I might have to cancel Thanksgiving and send all the family to Luby's. I don't think I'll be able to cook.

Update: The sun is out briefly. The rain is scheduled to come back in a couple of hours—right when I need to go to the grocery store, unfortunately—but for now, it's sunny and bright. Yay! Cold weather comin' in tonight, just in time for Turkey Day.

Monday, November 22, 2004


Today's Horoscope:

Quickie: Coworkers' nervous little habits are unavoidable. Find a way to drown them out.

Overview: It's time for you to wind things down—all kinds of things. If you need to summon up one last blast of willpower to finish it all up, don't worry. You'll be more than equipped to handle it.

more waiting

I just spoke with Northwestern regarding my request for an off-campus interview. See, I requested an interview six weeks ago, and I haven't heard anything. I was beginning to wonder if they lost my information or were ignoring my request because I hadn't submitted my application.

None of that, actually, is the case. They're just really backed up, with lots of requests and not enough alumni to do interviews. I'm supposed to wait another week and call then if I haven't heard anything.

I'm not sure what another week is going to do—after all, this week is half holiday, so I don't know how much is going to get done before next Tuesday. Still, good to know I didn't do anything wrong, and that my information didn't get lost, and that I should, at some point, get an interview. Hopefully.

Update: I just received my interview information. Either an eerie coincidence or my call expedited something. Either way, I now have contact information.

Sunday, November 21, 2004

did you know that...

...vinyl tile gives off a distinct smell that apparently doesn't dissipate with any rapidity?

...you can get denim burn on your knees if you wear jeans while installing tile?

...it is nearly impossible to hang anything on the wall straight when you are 5'1" and don't have anything resembling a level?

...even if you think your walls are straight, plumb, they probably aren't?

...fresh turkeys (even the frozen "fresh" turkeys, which aren't frozen solid, and can be called fresh because of some odd USDA regulations) are twice as expensive as frozen turkeys? And that you pretty much can't find a truly frozen turkey that hasn't been injected with "flavorings"?

All these are things I learned this weekend. It took a lot of time and quite a bit of contortion on my part (since I'm the only one small enough to measure and cut the tile that goes behind the toilets), and we are bit messy around here still, but we have new flooring in all of our bathrooms, our foyer, and our kitchen/utility. Hallelujah! It's delightful. We celebrated by buying new rugs for the doorways and kitchen, and a new blowdryer for me.

A long, long weekend leading into what will be a long, long week. I'm pretty darn tired right now.

Saturday, November 20, 2004

rain and vanilla coke

It's raining again here, which is annoying. Mr. Angst, the Angst-in-laws, and I excursed (is that a word? if it is, I like it) to the Home Depot today and bought 160 or so square feet of vinyl tile. We're retiling the entryway, all 2-1/2 baths, and our kitchen/utility room. This is partly because the tile that is in all of these room is dead ugly—alternating sea foam green and sandy peach—and partly because we'd like to increase the resale value of our home in preparation for next year's graduate school adventures.

Right now, we're waiting for the floor primer to dry. Remember when I said it was raining? That's making the floor primer not dry very quickly. When it's dry, we'll start cutting and laying tile, after which we'll replace the quarter-round trim and caulk around the toilets. We are not pulling the toilets up because we don't want to hire a plumber. Later, we'll unplug the fridge and pull it out to tile the kitchen; then we'll do the same with the laundry machines. This, I think, is going to be a very long day.

Also new, Mr. Angst mentioned that he doesn't think he's going to apply to the program in Boston anymore. Since I was never jazzed about Boston in the first place, I think Boston is off the list. So I only have two more applications to submit, instead of four-maybe-five. Once of those requires an extra essay, so I'll work on that in the next week or so. The other is pretty ready to go, just waiting for the next pay period.

So, la! I'd really much rather restrict myself to either Chicago or DC, with the possibility of staying right where we are and going to Texas if things don't work out for us to move. I don't like all the uncertainty that comes along with dozens of irons in the fire. Even for undergrad, I only applied to three schools, and one was the big state school that automatically admitted me.

Friday, November 19, 2004


CM has not heard of buttermilk pie. So i am going to tell you of the goodness that is buttermilk pie.

CM asks if it is like a custard pie, and, indeed, it is. But this custard pie is made with buttermilk. If you like buttermilk, you will love buttermilk pie.

Imagine: a couple of cups of buttermilk, a cup or so of sugar, a few eggs, and some nutmeg. Oh, and vanilla, too, because it's yummy. Pour into a pie shell and bake for slightly less than an hour until set, and eat. After it cools, of course.

Buttermilk pie...imagine the goodness that is any other custard pie: lemon meringue, say, but without the lemon or the meringue. The closest analogy I can imagine is ice cream. There's vanilla, and chocolate, and pistachio, and rocky road...all kinds of ice cream that are all essentially the same but with different flavorings added. And then there's sweet cream ice cream, which is basically ice cream with nothing but cream, eggs, and sugar.

Buttermilk pie is the sweet cream ice cream of custard pies. It is to be loved and eaten.