Monday, December 31, 2007

Stay Away, Sweeney Todd

A first for the follicles: After hundreds (thousands even?) of electric razor shaves since my teenage years, I shaved my face for the first time with a safety razor. Not the straight-edge barber kind, but just the kind of razor that the rest of the world has used for decades. I suppose I belong to a generation which has never needed to use regular razors if they don't want to. How perfectly Gen Y. But not yet Generation Entitlement, in which I would have to feel like I deserve a new electric razor every month and I'd just throw a perfectly good one away. Why? 'Cause my parents are off in Bora Bora and I have the McMansion to myself, and I can do what I want.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Jesus with the Rockettes

Here's a wintry scene I made a couple years ago made up of collaged papers including that old advertisement for some liquor involving random Rockettes or Vegas-style ladies dressed as snowflakes, falling down from the sky. Lovely. I kind of like the pictorial aspect of this, though- it is so much more difficult to rip up papers in the shape of something, rather than just going for abstraction.
There's also a star in the night sky, probably a photo that I painted on. Maybe it's pointing out Bethlehem over there beyond those construction paper hills of snow. If I were a King-slash-Wise Man, I wouldn't have any problem following falling Rockettes from the sky toward a giant star made out of twigs and paint. After all, I am a king and a wise man, so what I say goes. And I say we are going to go over this hill whether you like it or not. All in a day's work, I'd say. Well, we've come this far searching for Rockettes that we might as well rest our chunks of gold, frankincense and myrrh here in this ol' barn. Oh look! A baby.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

lolcats christmas

Sally and I updated a tacky holiday card. It's so much better now.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Mahler on the Subway

Alex Ross, writer of the fantastic book The Rest is Noise tells that when Mahler was appointed the conductor for the NY Philharmonic in 1909, he'd take the subway system to work. At that time, the NYC metro was only a couple years old, and I can imagine the novel excitement of commuting underground to your destination. Which I'm sure was, for Mahler, more glamorous than some of the stops I've had to get off at. (Why can't all the stops be designed by Squire Vickers?) However, Mahler being Mahler, I can only imagine the thoughts running through his nervous, energetic head while he's riding the subway. Naturally this image came to mind- even in the middle of the day, Mahler rides alone on a train. He thinks to himself, "This train is a machine of death. Don't die don't die don't die. It's taking me to Hell. I have to conduct my symphony tonight. My children are dead. WAGNER!! Oh, here's my stop."
It also begs the thought that perhaps he might have one day gotten around to writing Transitodenlieder. Songs on the death of transit. Or maybe Das Lied von der Metro? Song of the Subway? Luckily Mahler survived his commute, and Mahler's symphonies are preserved in even better condition than those hundred-year-old tunnels beneath this beautiful earth.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

46 Menorahmobiles Led the Big Parade

Last Sunday I witnessed a parade down a busy shopping street of 46 vehicles with PVC-pipe Menorahs strapped to the roofs. 46. Some were gold, some silver, but almost all had working lights which I assume are powered by God. Or cigarette lighters. The parade was accompanied by police cars, who kept other traffic from getting in the way of Hanukkah. The picture to the right is copyright URBANPHOTO and shows a nice wooden menorah, which has not yet migrated to Pittsburgh. Being behind the times in fashion, we still have plastic and metal rooftop accoutrements.
Those light-up menorahs, by the way, are on full candlepower today Hanukkah ends tonight at sundown.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Hidden Giraffe

This is a collage in the vein of Highlights magazine, the children's magazine of choice for all doctors' and dentists' offices. On the last page there was often a pen and ink drawing, with a bunch of things hidden within a face, or a woodland scene. As in, 'Can you find these 10 kitchen appliances hidden in this picture of a bear?' and sure enough, there was a blender, tucked away in the bear's paw!
The differences between Highlights and my collage are that this collage is totally obvious and there's only one thing to find. Can you spot the giraffe hidden in this sahara tree? I bet you can't!!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Bodies and Souls

It's eleven o'clock. Do you know where your spleen is?
I went to see the traveling exhibit 'Bodies' this past weekend with Jess and Bobby. Not only did I discover what my spleen looked like, but I discovered several items inside my body that I did not know I had. One, the jejunum, which is apparently part of my intestine. Two, a tissue-papery wall covering my stomach and internal organ area. There were some squeamish moments for me, especially in seeing an entire human skin spread out on a table, and then seeing diseased organs (this is your lung after smoking for years...this is your kidney on crack!) but overall, I was more inquisitive than grossed out. I thought I would be affected by seeing fetuses in various weeks of development (all were miscarried) but I was curious as to the growth of a baby inside of a person as the weeks progress. But overall, the exhibit was thoughtful and many things were even quite beautiful, like the circulatory displays of arteries, which were dramatically lit and bright red, down to the tiniest gossamer capillaries.
There was a lot of controversy surrounding this exhibit, especially in the lack of documentation of exactly who these people are. All of the organs and bodies are real people, preserved through a polymer process called 'plastination', developed in the 1970's. I kept having to remind myself that was I was seeing was not fake: it's a real spinal chord and ribs in which everything else on the body has been removed, and a real baby, and a real brain. This leads me to unanswered questions about huge issues: being healthy, self-awareness, sexuality, death, and the necessity for the preservation of our bodies if we do not need them when we're done with them. It also speaks of the resilience of our bodies, and how dynamic our insides are! I also thought, 'this is going to make me a hypochondriac'. One little bruise and I'll start to feel bad for my capillaries having to do so much work. It also reminds me of the Renaissance, when 'science' and 'religion' were less separate- my brain conjures images of dark mysterious findings in secret basement meetings, where little was known about how our bodies looked on the inside. If only da Vinci could see this show.
I seriously didn't plan this on purpose, but after we went to check out or bodies, we checked into our souls with a Service of Lessons and Carols. What an appropriate combo! It wasn't the most spectacular-filled event, but it got us into the Christmas spirit with candlelit readings and choir hymns, and afterward, there was a huge candlelit reception with loads of baked goods (naturally, I think the key to a good church is in its baked goods). I try and attend a Lessons and Carols service every year; not only does the event have good music, and great ambiance, it gives me a sense of community, no matter what faith I belong to. It's also refreshing to hear non-tacky 'holiday' music after listening to so much Christmas Crap on the radio. Added bonuses: 1. seeing two organists switch off mid-phrase, as one just scooted off the bench and began to conduct, while the other didn't even miss a note; 2. the choir director there is letting me write a piece for his bell choir. And 3. the crumb cake was heavenly, as were several other pieces of cake which I sampled from the baked goods. My stomach certainly had no complaints.

Cake courtesy of

Thursday, November 29, 2007

America is Listening

This is too strange- I was listening to an a capella version of Paul Simon's song America (sung by the Vassar Devils, if you were curious) and it was the last song on the CD. As I was about to get up and put in another CD, a car zoomed by outside with its windows down and it was blasting the original of the same song. And it was just ending as well. Now, am I crazy, or is this a weird coincidence? They're popular songs, sure, but certainly there's more common things to be playing. Right? Like 'Toxic'. Or 'Hey Ya'. Or everyone's favorite, 'Beer Barrel Polka'.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Dawn Upshaw

The world-renowned soprano Dawn Upshaw gave a Master Class to voice students (and others) at CMU this afternoon. Along with insightful comments for the vocalists, like thoughts about diction, phrasing, emotion, and motivation, she also let it be known that she was frustrated with the recital hall's lighting, so we all moved to the recital hall across the hall.
I also really appreciated the fact that Ms. Upshaw stressed the importance of the composer's intentions, that 'we' (being composers) write music for a reason, down to each little slur and hairpin crescendo. She also joked that she just doesn't choose to work with anyone anymore who doesn't have good reasons for the way they write their music. She mentioned in a Q & A that when she prepares for a performance, she'll research the history of the piece (even if it's a tiny art song, let alone her premiers of 4-hour operas), learn about the composer, study the basic harmonic structure of the song, listen to recordings, and translate every word of the text, or write it all out to internalize it, and then ponder how to communicate this work's meaning to the audience. This all happens before she begins to sing one single note.
But most importantly, Ms. Upshaw brought a surprising amount of energy to the room, to the audience, and to the singers baring their all (only to be criticized, and then built back up again). She didn't have to move much, but her voice was eloquent and thoughtful, well-spoken (well, I would hope so), and her body had a certain energy to it when she would illustrate a point that I think only comes from years of loving music and knowing it inside and out. I don't ever want to be in a German diction contest with this woman, either.
On a visual note, I think Ms. U was wearing this same necklace this afternoon as this picture, courtesy of wikipedia. Cue the fashionista voice: Girl, I could make you some jewelry that would pop the eyes out of those grey-haired Met Opera grannies. You jus' gimme a call, mmkay? This one's a little too quiet for you. I'm thinking lots of feathers and baubles as big as your operatic fists. The diva must have the perfect necklace to boot.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving Hand Turkeys

Happy Thanksgiving holiday to those American readers out there. (Happy Thanksgiving wishes to all those who don't have the holiday too! I know it seems like you're missing out but I'm sure Guy Fawkes day and Boxing Day are fun for you too, and I don't do anything special on your holidays.) I'm looking forward to time with my family, friends, and a real piano. Now go trace your hand on a piece of paper as if it were a turkey, or perhaps make it all abstract, with just a hint of beak. Also, be sure to stuff your face full of canned cranberry sauce- those ridges make it taste better somehow.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

These Things, They Are All But(t) Words

I debated whether this would be appropriate for my dear readers. I'm not usually a terrible vulgar person, and I try to keep my posts somewhat educational (a music review here, a collage there) but this idea was too good to pass up, so if you're easily offended, move on.
We all know of the pants with 'PRINCESS' on the butts, or even 'bitch', 'sexy', and others. But I think we could really pump up the volume on this cliched fashion. I just know the corporations could make some big bucks on these ideas for sweatpants/gym shorts letterings, so these are so totally copyright moi. If I see 'The Fact That I Have Words Here is a Feminist Discourse Which Empowers Me' as sewed-on letters to the next Abercrombie pants I'm gonna be furious. (That one's a little hard to read in this image, it's a lot of letters to sew on.) Here are a few ideas for re-envisioned words on the behinds of all the sorority girls you know and love.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

All the New News and Pittsburgh Symphony Reading!

There's been so much new news that has come to be in November, it's almost hard to remember it all. But luckily it's all been good news, and all exciting adventures.
The biggest news is that I finished my orchestra piece, Lake Myvatn. It's about 8 minutes and 20 seconds long (one movement) and 144 measures. A gross of measures, if you will. Not very many, compared to most orchestral pieces, but it does more more slowly. I'm excited to hear all the celeste and crotale sounds, and the intense brass and string sections. The Carnegie-Mellon Philharmonic will be playing it in the Spring.
But in reality, that's not really the biggest news. I thought it was, but then I heard something two days ago. The biggest biggest news is that John Corigliano, the Composer of the Year for the Pittsburgh Symphony's Composer, chose my piece (and 3 other local grad students from surrounding colleges) to be read by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. The PSO is top-notch. And I am so delighted. There won't be a formal concert, but the Symphony will rehearse my piece and ask me questions, and I'll be able to ask them questions, and get feedback about what worked, and what I can do more effectively. I am bummed that my friend Matt didn't get picked- I think he has great ideas and I would have been happy to see him get a reading as well...but it's still good to win. The reading will happen sometime in March. I was expecting the decision sometime around Spring as well, so this came so suddenly. Hooray!

Other news in brief: Pre-Halloween festivities caused Sally and me to dress up and Sally wore My Little Ponies in her hair. I wore teeny tiny shorts and a clip-on tie from 5th grade. I can't believe I hadn't posted this picture yet.It's also an explosion of yellow outside my treehouse door, and more colors of strange neon translucence await me on my walk every day.

Such a shame that the photos don't even do the colors justice, as the remainder of the bright leaves here are quite electrifying, practically enveloping one in a bath of color.

I'm also designing things! The School of Music let me design an invitation for a fancypants piano concert they're giving for the CMU elite, and I also designed three different (and fabulous) graphic posters for the Student Composer's Concert tomorrow night.
I'm taking a Communication Design Fundamentals course next semester, and I'm really excited about learning about design for realz, and not just faking it. Then again, some good ideas come from working with what you've got...
Like taking a spool of wire and some beads from a Claire's bracelet that you found on the ground and combining it with some gaudy chandelier drops and you can have a really fantastic sculptural necklace. I also reclaimed a wool sweater by spray-painting on fleur-de-lis stencils and adding a vintage patch to cover a hole. It sadly did not get accepted into the craft book I entered it into, but I did get it back so I can wear it around. And sew up the holes that I missed the first time. Which makes me wonder why Goodwill missed this one (or a memo to Goodwill: there is a mouse in your building.)

And last but certainly not to be the least, is that I now have a real website!
Check out and listen to some music samples, check out a couple collages, read about me (just not too carefully, the texts still need some editing), and then commission me to write you some music, of course. I do it all! And by all, I just mean some of the artsy fartsy stuff, and no sports at all, and certainly nothing having to do with any real business skills, which hasn't made me any money yet but it does get me all the ladies. And by all the ladies I mean the friends I already had, and we talk about graphic design, the periodic table of elements, and why no one wants to wear my sculptural necklace made of chandelier pendants out in public. In fact, though I've been exceedingly happy about all my design endeavors, I've been steadily losing money. But soon enough, my friends.
Soon enough.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Freaky Friday Marine Life

Oh, to be krill! Says the plankton. Oh, to be plankton! Says the krill. They look pretty despondent. But one day the planets were aligned, and ZAP!
Still no match for that baleen whale!!!
(This was an excuse for me to draw happy cartoon sea organisms. I care not what they look like in real life, so long as they're happy.)

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Furnace men

It is a prerequisite if you are a furnace repairman to have a mullet, and to smoke inside other people's apartments. You must also be able to describe the quality of the titties on all the girls who live in the building.

Concert for Peace

Last night I was invited to play a few of my art songs for the opening concert in a World Peace Conference in Pittsburgh. I was nervous at first as I only knew the organizer, Emily Pinkerton and her husband Patrick. And technically I know them through a friend, so I'm more like a friend of a friend of a friend of a friend. But I was put at ease by the warm applause from the audience. I played a few art songs which normally don't have much of a venue- they're text settings of poems (usually short) and some are pretty melancholic. I also played my recomposition of Fleetwood Mac's 'Don't Stop' and ended with an appropriate Jane Tyson Clement art song. Later at the reception, a man told me that he met Jane Clement 30 years ago! His son now lives at the community where Clement lived. It can be a very small world.
The opening songs were by the folk orchestra from the UU Church in Shadyside, where Emily directs the group in their monthly concert. Highlights included a real live autoharp player, and a guy blowing into a jug. He was really serious about it, so it was effective. Especially in a folk orchestra.
After my set, I had the pleasure of hearing Heather Kropf. She's a singer-songwriter and I listened to her latest album, which is phenomenal! There are a couple stand-out soul and jazz tracks with muted trumpet, which can compete with any major-label artist today. The quality of that recording blows me away. Her piano style is simple yet effective, with hints of jazz and Kate Bush, and she mentioned the Joni Mitchell streak through her poetic lyrics. She even asked me if she could learn two of my songs! How could I say no? Also, how can I get better at writing songs with lyrics that don't blow.
Emily concluded the evening with a few solo nylon-strung guitar songs in Spanish, and a folk music set of banjo, guitar, and bass, all songs she composed. The banjo was so mellow and warm, though, and not the plinkety-plunk banjo I'm used to hearing in bluegrass (which I love in its own right, of course). It smoothed out the songs, which perfectly incorporated Emily's light, Alison-Krauss-y voice into one solid instrument. The pieces in Spanish were a particular highlight for me; I never get to hear nylon-strung guitars, which are incredibly beautiful, and Emily's songs for them brought out her South American influences (and Ph.D. in ethnomusicology) while still keeping her own voice, which sings about 'landscapes as metaphor for human emotion'.
I think that this concert was one of the most memorable things I've heard in Pittsburgh, and I've heard quite a bit so far. Hearing folk music live reminds me that while I'm usually in classical music world all day, there's a huge world out there, full of talent and genuine appreciation for music in all its genres. There are classical musicians who love to get down with their fiddles. Pop musicians who are smart enough to sing about Hestia, the goddess of the hearth. I don't know what I do. Take words and textures and melodies and give them a new life? And how can I not thank an appreciative audience? Perhaps that appreciation for all kinds of musical expression is a small particle of help for world peace. I'm thankful to be a part of that.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Simple Elegant Halloween with Drunken Sluts

Part of the joy this holiday season is being able to make oneself sick to one's stomach seeing all of the scantily-clad sluts in Halloween costumes. As Mean Girls proves all too well, you can take any costume and turn it sexy by removing a few of the non-essential items and adding more cleavage, and most essentially, the shortest skirt/shirt/shorts possible. Sexy nurse, coming right up. Sexy firefighter girl, I saw one of those too. Sexy cannibal, well, that's a little trickier, but I saw it done. And it was frightening.
Costumes this season include horny devils, an audio tour of famous artworks, and I was Wikipedia, complete with printed-out entries that would be stuck to my body throughout the night. I found some interesting articles, including the only known photograph of Frederic Chopin, and a 'list' of the two hockey teams in Alberta, Canada (thanks to the 'random article' function). I was surprised to find out that a lot of people don't know what Wikipedia is (or perhaps my costume wasn't clear enough?) but even after I explained that it's a user-editable encyclopedia they don't really get it.
Of course, the best costumes involve the most intricate details, and the winner of intricate details goes to Sally, who was Bjork.
Now there are two people in the world who can pull off wearing a swan dress with glamorous nonchalance.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Sexy bongo-bassoon grooves

Fall is abuzz with chamber music. I have at least two pieces being premiered in upcoming concerts, which is something exceptional, and one piece is programmed for two recitals- this is definitely the most performances of my works in one season. Not to mention the Saxophone Quartet which is being played a gazillion times for high school students in New York. So, if you're in Pittsburgh, and would like to attend, you can hear:

Nov. 2- possible art songs, TBA, Shadyside Presbyterian Church (this will be pretty last-minute in a Concert for Peace, but it could be lovely.)
Nov. 11- Four Lovers (bassoon and one percussionist)- This one is the percussionist's recital.
5pm, Alumni Concert Hall
Nov. 15- Songs for Pittsburgh (flute, harp, and viola trio) at the Student Composer's Concert
7pm, Kresge Recital Hall.
Dec. 1- Four Lovers- This recital is for the bassoonist, for whom the piece was written.
5pm Kresge Recital Hall.

Monday, October 15, 2007


Idea for a youth 'subliminal values' book: antismoking theme meets aquatic adventures.
The little fishie says: "when I grow up, I want to puff just like him!"
That pufferfish is pretty cool, but man, is it hard to keep that cigarette lit underwater.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Recipe for Fall

It looks like Fall is finally here! Get out your beakers and stir up a recipe for a season of crunchy leaves, cool evenings, and appley everything. I can finally wear a blazer, and perhaps a scarf, and real pants. This makes Midnight a happy man, and out of place, 'cause everyone else is cranky that seems so dreary out.

Friday, October 05, 2007


It took me no less than twenty-seven minutes today from the moment I pulled a number at the deli to the time I was handed my TWO items: a pound of turkey and a half-pound of salami. Normally I wouldn't stand for such madness, but I've been craving turkey sandwiches for lunch, and I had to buy groceries sometime, and well, I'm at the grocery store now and I won't come back just to go to the meat section. With scant help, and ten people waiting ahead of me, there was little I could do but be lucky number 37.
On a side note, thoughts about the Shadyside Giant Eagle Market District Fancy Pants Grocer Bistro and Part-Time Massage Therapist.
1. Lots of gay boys like this grocery store. Why didn't I dress up?
2. The man ahead of me at the deli is super-fashionable. I wonder if he's gay. Well, that confirms it- he's ordering prosciutto.
3. No spousal arguments allowed in the aisles.
4. There are shanks of cactus for sale in the produce section. Have I ever in my life seen a cactus on a menu?

There's lots to think about when you have 27 minutes to wait by the roast beef.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Girl Hit By Bicycle Hit By Bus

I was witness to a traffic accident the other day which surprised me that no one else seemed shocked (or even amused) at the situation. The bus I was riding on clipped the mirror of a bicyclist, who was attempting to swerve around a pedestrian on the sidewalk. The bicyclist then crashed into the girl, who was sent, arms flying (you know those sitcom choreographed motions of people who trip over things? That kind of arm-flailing), onto the grass of someone's lawn. Thankfully no one looked too hurt, and I lost my view as the bus sped away from the scene. I drew this Richard Scarry-esque cartoon to help illustrate.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Stolen Identity Irony

In what can only be described as a case of stolen identity irony, Banana Republic sent me a letter today saying that my social security number (from a job application last year) may have been taken, inside of a laptop that was stolen from some corporate whore's office. However, it's not serious, and the computer was probably only used to look at porn anyway (I'm assuming that's what stolen computers are used for; Banana can't comment at this time). The irony of the story is that in the envelope which my letter was mailed, someone else's form was stuck in accidentally. Name and address and everything. Isn't the point of this letter to inform you about keeping one's personal information private? And now I know that this person lives down the street from me, by the grocery store. can call me Ms. Kendra Jenkins from now on. After all, I did get her mail, and I can be anybody I want to nowadays.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Kings of Convenience and Erlend Oye

The Kings of Convenience are a band that I've known about for a few years, thanks in part to my friend Ryan, a baron of indie credibility. They've got two albums out, and one 'remix' album. Norwegian in origin, their music is usually composed of two nylon-strung guitars (or soft instruments) and duetting baritone vocals, which are conveniently in my own range for once! And being Scandinavian adds an extra cool element. Not to mention all of their incredibly thoughtful lyrics, which are full of stories and verbal puns (their first album is titled Quiet Is The New Loud), and that the volume never rises above mezzoforte, even with drums and cello and piano involved. I'm a big fan of their 'hit' song I'd Rather Dance With You, which has a cute video and dance moves like I do in my living room. Their latest album 'Riot on an Empty Street' also has two songs featuring Feist.
Well, lately, I've been discovering the offshoot projects of the solo Kings of Convenience, and it's so exciting to find new music that you love and never knew existed! Erlend Oye is the more prolific of the two singers (he's pictured at right with his trademark retro-thick glasses) and Eirik Glambek Boe (slashes through all the O's) is the other, who has a solo band on MySpace but no album that I know of. Erlend has a solo electronic music album out, called Unrest, a DJ Kicks remix album (of other people's songs) and he also has a live 'band' under the band name 'The Whitest Boy Alive'. The electronica album is especially good- I prefer warm sounds and soft beats with keyboardy noises for my electronic music, rather than industrial sounds. Every piece is definitely a 'song' rather continuous 'unsuh unsuh unsuh'.
Encompassing several different genres, Oye's wittiness and clever songwriting stays strong. The melodies are catchy but not fluffy ; the instrumentation is clever and sometimes funny, but spare. I'd also like to point out the music video for the Unrest album includes slow motion, sexual innuendo with roosters, egg-smashing, and baton-twirling. Check it out.
I saw Kings of Convenience once in Boston, and the music was so wonderfully quiet that the cash register at the event was making too much noise for the performance. It was difficult to hear the major-seventh chords quietly plucked out of a guitar over the 'ch-ch-ching! Zip zip zip zip' of the receipt printer. Now that's my kind of pop music. Perhaps in a future album tour they'll be passing my way again. Or I may just have to fly to Bergen, Norway for my fix.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Quarter-Century Weekend

This weekend was full of excitement! It was my birthday yesterday, and in celebration of turning 25, I had a party at my apartment and made apple pie. I received awesome items like gay erotica and giraffe socks from Sally, Mark, and Matt, fake mustaches from Amy, and the book Cloud Atlas from Julian. (Coincidence that everyone has a livejournal? I think not.)
I also went home to Western, NY, to hear a world premiere of my Saxophone Quartet played by the Erie Saxophone Quartet, right in my hometown! It was really special to have a classical music premier that my family members could drive right down the road and go see. The performance went very well, and the group's professor asked me to possibly plan a trip to SUNY Fredonia to talk with students about composer/performer collaborations. I am delighted! I think the piece was well-received, as most of the people who weren't elderly (or crippled by the hard pews of the church that the performance was in) stood up and clapped at the end of it. I also have to remind myself that while I don't think the piece was the best thing I've ever written (though it is the most sassy), having someone get their Master's degree in Music, and actually compose the music that one hears is quite a feat. I get so accustomed to being in academia, feeling lowly compared to professors I admire, that I forget that I actually gotz some skillz.
(Side note: I had about five people ask me why saxophones are so many different sizes, what their names are, and what they're all still saxophones. And if the soprano sax is a toy.)
In addition to all this excitement, my family had a birthday party waiting for me when I got home, and I got to visit with my aunts, uncles, and cousins. I also saw my sister's sexy new haircut. Ma and Pa also had the wagon pulled up outside the depot, ready to give me the horse and buggy ride of my life. I'm glad I remembered my bonnet!
Kidding about all the Laura Ingalls stuff. But the rest happened, and it was no less exciting than a wild horse ride, sans bonnet. Now I have to catch up on all the things I neglected this weekend in favor of drinking Asti.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Beergasm, Fall Memories, Leafy Shirt

It feels like fall outside! I am just so excited I can't express it with words. The weather lately has felt sort of like:
Warm, but exuberant. Like a beergasm hot tub full of boys, or beakers full of bubbly champagne. And the evenings feel a bit like this:Like a feeling of being in a hot tub full of boys and then hopping out into the chilly night air. Autumn (or at least the promise of it) makes me very optimistic, reminiscent, nostalgic. So does the time of my birthday, which is next Monday. This time in September also causes me to wax poetic about a string of very strange and random things:
1. Fancy pens. Every year from K-12 I'd buy some fancy pens for school. Color-changing, pens with aquatic animals on them, mechanical pencils, and pencils with trolls on the top.
2. Back to school, walking down the long driveway to the school bus.
3. A shirt I had with autumn leaves on it, circa fifth grade. It was strangely similar to this beauty from
4. My semester in Scotland. Better in hindsight than in actuality, considering the strange cultural differences to be overcome and the lack of a quality educational system. But I would love to go back and teach, live/work, or maybe just soak up the essence there.
5. One chicken tandoori sub. (Or hoagie.) Eaten in Princes St. Gardens, Edinburgh. I was famished, a stranger in a foreign country, with pulled tendons in my feet from cobblestones and jet lag. A chicken tandoori sandwich saved me.
5 1/2. A tomato and olive pita pocket which did not save me. It was disgusting and I spit it all out on the ground.
6. Vassar.
7. New apartments, and making a home for your few precious things.
8. New and amazing friends!

It's the same every year, when the wave of 'fancypensback2skoolleafyshirtscotlandtandoorivassarapartmentfriends!' hits me suddenly and unexpectedly. The list grows longer with every autumn, but I certainly look forward to it extending with new and wonderful things. I've retired the leafy shirt, though...I don't want to be too cool for school and intimidate all the new kids.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Scent of Heaven

In what can only be described as 'new loveseat' odor, my apartment now smells like an IKEA showroom. Minus the cinnamon buns. But that can be rectified.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Quick takers

I set a small plastic storage bin with three drawers in it (something you might put your bathroom stuff in) out on my sidewalk this morning at 10:00am. I taped a sign on it saying 'FREE TAKE ME' and it was gone by 2:00pm. How quickly snatched!
I just wish I could be the guy who finds a shiny new chandelier on the sidewalk, or a gently worn size 40 Dior three-piece suit on the curb, ready to go to a good home. Guess this isn't the right part of town for free chandeliers.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Ridiculous Musical Expectations

Now that people in the music building sort of know who I am ('The Music Office Biotch') they have come to do silly things, like hand me keys to turn in when they see me in the halls, or ask if I could give up my computer in the music office so he/she could print something out. I'm working more hours than normal (thankfully I get paid a little extra for it) but it does cut into my composing time, and a couple days I eat lunch in the closet, which is not too cool with me. However, I'm enjoying the classwork this semester, and there are so many new young composers that I hope to impress with my certain je ne sais quoi (and avant-garde neckpieces).
Here's some little snips from my recent trip to the Pittsburgh Zoo, 'cause I've been meaning to add these and haven't had a chance.

This girl was too darn cute. Unfortunately the elephants didn't fancy the kiddies much and preferred to ignore everyone in favor of showering themselves with water and dirt.

There were also a lot of small amusements, like a man sticking his hand into the piranha tank. Click on this one for more fishie fun!Okay, I've done my job for the day, eased a couple minor crises by overnight mailing envelopes, and now its back to thinking about how to create the sounds of a flock of birds using only percussion. What a varied occupation I'm getting myself into.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Quotations from a Five-Year-Old

Let me say in advance: I don't like most children. Until they can color, or talk about music in a 'mini-adult' voice, I think children are pretty useless. And certainly not as cute as everyone thinks. That being said, I babysat this boy for a second time and he is amazing. We'll call him 'One-Liner Kid'. He's five, and Jewish, and has two gay dads, and has a new baby brother adopted from Vietnam who was peacefully sleeping upstairs the whole time I was babysitting. Well, One-Liner was in top form during my babysitting hours. It seems that everything that comes out of his mouth is hilarious, and what seems to be very intelligent to me for a five-year old. The last time I babysat, he offered the gem 'This is a lion, and they live in the Sahara. This is a tiger, and I'm Jewish. Are you Jewish? This is a zebra.'
But this time the one-liners were bouncing left and right.

"The Movie About Me will involve a boy, and lots of abrasions."

"Are you in a rock band? We should be in a rock band and our name will be Really Great Rock Band."

"I wrote to Dwayne to see if I could be in his rock band but he said no."
"How old is Dwayne?" I ask.
"He's 18. He's really tall."

"Look, all the carnivores are sleeping, except for this diplodocus." (We're playing with dinosaurs and all the herbivores are left standing.)

Did I also mention that One-Liner is obsessed with the Phantom of the Opera musical, and getting over his Lion King musical phase? Talk about a kid with two gay dads, but the strange thing is that neither parent really cares that much about musicals. I'm singing a line from the musical to One-Liner:
"The PHAaa-ntom of the Opera is there..."
"Insiiide your mind! I want to be Phantom for Halloween. Do you have a mask?"

We're coloring a book of Spiderman drawings, One-Liner tells me:
"That looks like a herd of dingos".
Clearly the boy knows a lot about animals, from the Paleozoic era onwards.

But my personal favorite occurs when we're playing a computer game, and One-Liner turns to me and says,
"I'm an excellent fry cook."
And he turns back to 'Shrek: The Computer Game', blissfully unaware of his stand-up routine.

I'm certainly amused for a few hours, the dads are happy to get out of the house, and One-Liner gets to entertain. Everyone's happy! And adding to the near-perfect way to make a little extra money, the kid puts himself to bed.

Superman Demystified

There's a certain amount of comforting predictability when it comes to superhero action flicks. There's always going to be the foreshadowing moment of 'don't be alarmed by our advanced technology, nothing will ever go wrong...' and there will always be the dastardly evil plotting of the bad guy, for little reasoning beyond 'being the richest man in the universe'. Luckily there are also some surprises, like in 'Superman Returns', the delightful Parker Posey, and the hints of SuperMuscles underneath that spandex outfit. Click on the picture to view the elements you can use to make your own superhero adventure!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Oh, the First Days are the Hardest Days...

...when You're the Music Bitch. I can hear the Grateful Dead now. For months, the pace at the music office usually compromises only a few tasks.
-sort the mail
-schedule a room
-eat lunch outside for an hour
-answer the phone a couple times
-play on the internet for several hours
But now that it's the second day of classes, and I should be only working 2 hours a day and going to my one class a day, the start of school has looked more like this:
-come fill in extra hours even though I'm not supposed to work and I should be going grocery shopping
-train the new assistants
-give directions to 10 lost foreign students
-sweat through two shirts lugging paper cases up from the basement
-rearrange chairs and tables in a concert hall three times in one day for events
-handle room requests which should have been handled over the summer, but professors insist on not turning in a piece of paper to me until four months after the due date, and then get huffy that they can't have the schedule that they want
-update 75 faculty addresses and phone numbers
-get new people copy codes
-eat a PB&J at the desk while on the phone
I miss the quiet of summer, but I'm excited to be writing my orchestra piece, and glad to have familiar faces back in town.
Current music: the Petroushka cornet theme, 1,000 times in succession from auditions across the hall.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Sleepy at Work

It's really humid here and after not sleeping well for the past week, the air-conditioned music office closet seems like such a welcoming place for a nap. And then the phone rings and I have 65 placement exams to grade and actual office work to do! Drats.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


I think I saved the day yesterday in the music office after getting a giant bee back outside from its angry home inside the building. I swear that this bee was the biggest bee I've ever seen, and I'm not joking, it was probably 2.5 inches. It looked a lot like this one above, drawn my my friend Amy.
But Amy thinks by my description it looked more like this:

I'd say it was three inches long but maybe that's a bit much. Either way, there were about five people in the office trying to come up with ways to kill it, including a broom with cardstock stuck in it. One of our conductors rigged up a beautiful 'cup on a stick of bamboo' mechanism to trap the little devil. The bee was almost too big to fit into the styrofoam cup! But then no one could figure out how to keep the bee in the cup as it slid over the mouldings of the windows. I suggested sliding some paper under the cup to trap the bee (thanks country living!). Well, obviously that made me the designated bee-trapper. But it was a success! And then there was clapping. And the hummingbee lived to buzz another day.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Reviews of Old Soaps

I assume that many of you dear readers have collected different kinds of objects in your lives. Some people collect porcelain dolls, and some people collect real dolls. Some people collect trivets, while others collect license plates. I, too, have collected certain things over periods of time in my life. I have an old Lego collection, and a crystal and mineral collection, and a 'coins from other countries' collection. Nowadays I suppose I collect recordings and music scores, if anything. Oh, and who could forget my collection of properties in Dubai. But I think there are only a few people who have collected a huge bag of travel soaps and shampoos from various hotels spanning the last thirteen years. I went through this bag while on my 'vacation', and thought I would provide you with a design review of hotel soaps across North America. I will not be providing, however, a performance review of said soaps and shampoos. As cute as they are, hotel shampoo is still crap, and I've never stayed in the Four Seasons to use their luxe samples. My hair already gets enough mistreatment from my everyday 99-cent Big Value Shampooze.From left to right, these are highlights of the standard bottle.
1. 'Gentle Organic Shampoo', hotel unmarked. Classy, understated elegance. I feel like each drop is a chamomile-infused blessing from heaven. And by heaven, I mean somewhere in a factory in Tennessee. Overall, not too ostentatious design, but not too cheap. The lid could stand to be translucent. Midnight Shoveler grade: B+.
2. Canadian Conditioning Shampoo. Like Pert Plus, but orange, it strips your hair of its nutrients, and then puts the nutrients right back! How 'bout that! Design elements include the ever-present Canadian Maple leaf, and square shape. Reminds me too much of cologne containers, however, and Scotch bottles for cheap alcoholics. Grade: B-.
3. Where do I start, Howard. Howard Johnson, your cheap hotel rooms beguile me. If you only went for a Minimalist Mod look you could really pull off a $45 hotel room and this hideous mini-shampoo. Instead, your colors are throwupbeigeorange (yes, one word, it all runs together in one wretch), and grass-stains mixed with teal crayons. No, no, no. However, small changes can improve your shampoo drastically! Change the shape of the bottle to a concave neck, like vintage perfumes, which would be elegant in white. And make your logo and lettering even more blocky and '70's, and I'm there, sleeping at shabbychic HoJo. But for now: D+. At least your bottle is white. Unlike #4. I can't even read the label even if it wasn't a blurry photo. Your shampoo has separately violently which perfectly matches the faux-marble finish of your label, complete with faux-elegant gold lettering. Gold=dazzling, so why doesn't it work on soaps? I know, because your shampoo isn't suppose to look like it's imitating a piece of gold-striated marble dug out of a quarry. Do you think anyone is ever tricked into thinking your bottle top is an actual ball of gold? Then don't lie to me! D- for lying.
I've calmed down. Now we'll look at Eccentric shapes.
1. Marriott, as much as I don't like your salmon-and-grey, I think it works with the cylinder shape. I'm sort of indifferent to this one, but it also came with an identical container of baby powder which sprinkles out delightfully. B+.
2. Comfort Inn Conditioning Shampoo. As much as I bet this shampoo sucks, I like the bottle a lot. It's art-deco classy and I like the translucence. However, couldn't Comfort find a more exciting color for the label and top than dull gray? A-.
3. (Behind). Shirmack. I suppose I should think practically about this one, like, 'I could store 50 single-use shampoos all in one pocket! Yay!' and praise the lack of waste material: How much shampoo goes thrown out after one use in a hotel room, every day, in hotel rooms all across America? It pains me to think about. But then fashionable Midnight butts in and says, you're paying for this hotel room, and all you get is this free sample? What happened to 'lather rinse repeat?' Grade: On the Fence B.
4. This isn't even a shampoo. I think it's a candy. But it's from Mexico, and it's from 1993. This candy is from a hotel 14 years ago. Gross. It's hard to tell from this photo of a photo, though, that the design is actually quite nice, and simple yet attractive. So this candy gets an A. But fails to be a shampoo.
Less dazzling highlights. 1. Dockside Inn, Martha's Vineyard. This soap is clear, but very cherry red-colored, even after 8 years in a cupboard. This is the one shampoo I saved to use for real, because it holds its age well. It's like a good wine of the soap bar world. And quaintly designed, with a tie-in to the 'candy-colored Victorian B&B' in which I stayed. (Don't get all impressed, it wasn't quite that glam.) A.
2. 'Fleur de Lis Flex & Go'. Ugh. There's something ugly about the 'Flex and Go' font, and not very fleur-de-lis-ey in the overall aesthetic. The actual symbol of the fleur-de-lis reminds me of French Monarchies. Heralds. Brocade. Beautiful, tall, Wrought-iron fences. This Fleur-de-Flex -and-Go reminds me of IHOP and fluorescent lighting. What if you made the cap into the shape of the fleur-de-lis? Maybe I'd rethink my grade: C-.
3. Stage West. I'm only amused by the porn-chic font of this hotel, which if I recall, looks nothing like California in the 1970's. Nor reminded me of anything Western. It did live up to the hype of the rest of the bottle, though, which states "All-Suite Hotel & Theater Restaurant Body Lotion Lotion Creme". They liked the idea of lotion so much they said it twice. If you're going to go all out, why not say 'Hotel & Theater Restaurant with Bathrooms Food Fun & Sleeping Luxurious Hot Body Lotion Lotion Creamy Creme'? C+.
Bizarrely, the winner of the design contest of 13-year old soaps is from Disney World, and I usually can't stand a lot of Disney emblazoning. In fact, I'm probably breaking some copyright code now by even showing you a picture of "M**key M**se" without permission.
But yet, the design of this shampoo and soap is way cool, and it still looks fresh and hip even thirteen years later (I was eleven when I went to Disneyworld, though it seems like only yesterday that I was watching Michael Jackson at Epcot Center. Sigh.). I like the close cropping of the Mickey on the label, and the font is fun and geometric with its filled in A's and O's. The size is also substantial while still being 'travel'-sized; I could see myself reusing the container with more soap and being a good little recycler. I assume these soaps were on the fancier side of hotel rooms, but I never stayed in an official Disney hotel I have no idea where these came from. It's a mystery, but they get an A anyway.
Before I leave you with an apology that this post was so long, there's one more soap which gets an A+. I think I also used it once as a pet, because it has a little leash on it. Leash or no leash, it's probably the best soap in the history of bar soaps.
But it wasn't a soap...It was a soap...lobster.

Old Spice

Much to my surprise, I discovered that a couple of the spices in my parents' kitchen were dated from 1974. This is Nixon-era dill, we're talking here. And for some reason this wasn't really a problem. Personally, I love that special taste of 33-year-old oregano. What's that subtle flavor? Oh, I know. It's dead grass.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Back from Vacation with armfuls of Travel Soaps

Hi all,
My lack of posting last week was due to my vacation at home in Western New York with my family. It's amazing what just a week away from your usual surroundings will do to a person. I always enjoy returning to my 'home home' room, which is pretty much just the way I'd want it (and thankfully not converted to a sewing room). My apartment back in Pittsburgh now looks different, and is brighter (and tippier) than I remember it. I also opened the door to a bunch of boxes, which quickly reminded me that I'm moving to another apartment (just one building to the left of me) in just two days, and then flying to Boston, MA this next coming weekend! Next week also starts 'orientation' for new grad students, which is a sure reminder that my second year of grad school will start in just two weeks. What a busy August for Midnight.
But being home also reminded me of the joys of a swimming pool, hearing the crickets at night, laughing with my family, campfires, and barbecued chicken. It was certainly relaxing, to the point of boredom, but I don't think I'd want it any other way.
Be sure to stay tuned for stories of spices, sleeping without underwear, and amusing photos of a collection of travel soaps and shampoos that I had amassed over the last...ahem...13 years.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Heard in the Bushes

Twice now I've walked by a house on Negley Ave. and I have overheard a mom talking to her very young son, who sounds like he could be three years old. They play in the backyard, which must be tiny, but I can't see anything through the shrubbery. I do see a lot of broken bricks and mortar strewn along the ground, like a wall of a house was recently knocked down.
In any case, the first time I walked by I heard:

"You want to play with the bricks? Those bricks are heavy...Oh, don't put the bricks in the pool!"

But the next time I heard an even-better:

"Did you just pour bleach on these plants? No!!"

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Oh, the Arctic Places You'll Go

Facebook has been introducing all these applications which you can add to your profile, including the 'Anonymous Comments' feature ('Hey! Your face looks like a butt, buttface!' and you'll never know who sent it to you) and a slide show of your favorite works of Art. However, I find fascinating the 'Where I've Been' application, which includes a feature to let your friends know what countries and states you've traveled to, lived in, and where you'd like to go. I was amused for a good chunk of time clicking on the countries I wanted to visit, and the selecting the piddly number of U.S. states I've seen (I haven't traveled west of Cleveland, OH save for a vacation to Hawaii!) but pleased that I've visited the little country like Monaco. It looks just like this vintage poster here, with it's fancy speeding race cars and population: 5 gazillionaires, 5,000 perfect palm trees.
But I wanted more than just clicking on every single Scandinavian country and desiring to go there, and my wants were satiated when I discovered that you can click on remote and scantly-populated countries, and you can even zoom in on tiny islands! Here is a sampling of where I'd like to go, proving that I will one day become the 6th gazillionaire of Monaco and be able to get myself to these locations via sumptuous-yet- earth-friendly transportation. Any travel companions?

In no particular order:

Svalbard. Archipelago of islands North of Norway. 2004 population: 2,765.
I'd like to visit here for the incredible-looking Arctic flowers that bloom and to see the wild polar bears roam about (they have "Polarbear Crossing" signs on the trails). There's a couple small towns, and a 'capital city' but no roads connect them. I'm most fascinated by Svalbard, however, by the Norwegian government which is currently building a "doomsday" seed depository other words, a huge cement vault which will store as many seeds of plants in the world as possible, to secure future crops from the dangers of global warming or, oops, nuclear war. The tunnel will be built 120 meters into the rock (permafrost, of course) and have security guards protecting the doors.

Okay. So perhaps I won't be able to be a tourist to the Doomsday Seed Depository Museum any time soon. But who wouldn't want to play with these happy little creatures that just hopped out of the Norwegian Sea? So chilly! They look hungry, I'll give them some fish to eat!...Why aren't you eating? Oh, you're blocks of ice.

Next stop: Easter Island. Kind of a given.
2002 Population: 3,791.
It's kind of cliché by now, but I still think it's cool.
This island, between Chile and Tahiti in the Pacific Ocean, has too many tourists as it is for the fragile state of the island, but I still want to see all these stone heads. Maybe they'll whisper to me secrets like, how can I stand still for long periods of time and not fidget? Or, how can I find a man with a good head on his shoulders, a good strong chin? I bet these guys would tell it like it is.
Easter Island also has an ancient script, a writing called 'Rongorongo', which could be a form of writing that has had no outside influence. That's pretty amazing. I think everything I do, say, act, dress, write, listen to is taken or adapted from somewhere else. I can't imaging coming up with my own written language. 'Course, nobody can agree on if it's even writing at all, as no scientist has been able to translate, so the point is probably moot. I can see those ancient stone people now, coming up with clever ways to amuse themselves by thinking, 'boy, people in the future are sure going to go nuts when they see this!' (scribble scribble).

A brief hop over to Yap.
2003 population: 6,300 (this is the most densely-inhabited place so far.)
Part of Micronesia, Yap uses stone money! Here's an 8-feet-tall stone 'coin' of great wealth. I'm not making this up. The smallest money items are three inches tall, and everything is disk-shaped. Lately, though the stone money is still viewed as real and valuable currency, the U.S. dollar is used for every-day purchases, and that really disappoints me.
Of course, as a picker-upper for having to deal with silly U.S. dollars, you can also frolic with giant swarms of manta rays that gather around Yap. But watch out or you might Irwin yourself.
(Aside: I'd really like this photo caption to read: 'Giant Crusty Donut Still Munched on By Local Wildlife'. But I can't compete with 8-foot tall stone money.)

I'll discuss briefly the Faroe Islands. With a population of over 48,000, this collection of islands delegated by Denmark is practically a megalopolis compared to Yap or Svalbard.
Highlights include a beautiful colorful capital city, Tórshavn (see left), and inter-island transportation, which used to be mainly by boat or helicopter, but now one can commute by fabulous underwater tunnels.
The music scene here also thrives, though many young people move to Denmark after high school. However, several indie bands, folk musicians, and composers have come from the Faroes! I have only been fortunate enough to come across Teitur, but that's at least one.
As far as delicacies go, I don't suggest you accompany me on this trip unless you like mutton and whale meat. I'm still on the fence about the whales.

Our last stop will be one that I haven't visited, but I've heard a lot about. It's pretty remote as far as I can tell. We're going to visit the mysterious island of Long. Now the 'Long Island' as it has been called by the Natives, is heavily populated with indigenous people who have created their own dialect, often untranslatable by people who live relatively close on the Isle of the Manhattan. Long Islanders often wear big dangly earrings and tacky accoutrements, and place values on family, hard work, and densely-populated dwellings. I don't know if I really want to visit this Island of Long, but seeing how we've been flying around the world, we might as well stop in for some of the local 'cwawfee', don'cha think?

Saturday, July 28, 2007

God out of a Machine

Wikipedia's users describe a 'deus ex machina' as "an unexpected, artificial, or improbable character, device, or event introduced suddenly in a work of fiction or drama to resolve a situation or untangle a plot (e.g. the rope that binds the hero's hands is luckily chewed off by a rat, or an angel suddenly appearing to solve problems)". I thought about how amusing this translated phrases is, literally 'God out of a machine'. I suppose I could have drawn the luminous figure of God appearing out of a vending machine, but that would probably be a little idolatrous. Funny, yes, but I'd probably have to obscure his face and all (God is secretly shy).
Instead, I chose to do some word-play. I like this version, in which God appears out of nowhere to rain and thunder on my parade. Notice that I'm only steps away from a church, where it's always sunny and beautiful. Perhaps a Target Ex Machina could suddenly send down a stylish umbrella? Or at least some galoshes for these sinners.

(Click on the image for a bigger version where all my photoshopping foibles show.)

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Emotive Fireworks

A scene from the Fourth of July in Boston, Mass., which features synchronized fireworks to popular tunes.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Air thoughts, P thoughts, A through G thoughts

Air holds up sounds and brings them to my ears! I was sitting on Flagstaff Hill for lunch today and every once and a while the wind would carry the sounds of disembodied jazz to my ears, which was coming from live lunchtime music about a quarter mile down the street at Schenley Plaza. So cool! I also love when I can sometimes hear church bells at my apartment, carried by the breeze, when normally all I get for street noise is unsa-unsa-unsa ghettoblasting car sounds and the occasional dog-peeing-on-a-tree sound.
Speaking of peeing, I saw a drunk guy relieve himself on the door of the building across the street from mine in the middle of the night. Should I have been more of a good Samaritan, I would have loved to yell at him and startle him so he'd jump back and pee all over his pants and probably fall over, pants on ankles, onto his fratty face. And then kick him symbolically in the face for being such a loser. But you know, I wasn't feeling like much of a good Samaritan that night.
Speaking of good nights, I've finally been sleeping better after my sore throat has calmed down. The doctor called today and I had Strep Throat Type C. Last fall I had Type G (oo, a rarity). Before that I don't think I had strep throat in 10 years. But one day I might be lucky enough to collect all the letters. I hope I have to wait a good while for that.

Monday, July 16, 2007

100th Post!

I noticed on the blogger dashboard that I had just made my 99th post, and this one will be the 100th! It's a blogger anniversary of sorts.
On this momentous occassion, I thought I might share with you some tidbits of things which are happening around the time of the 100th post. I've also included a comic of me boring the 100th post into the ground with something like a sledgehammer. Which is totally not how one would put in fenceposts that look like that, I know. But I'm going for effect here, not accuracy.
-5.05pm is a special time. 5.05pm today signaled all the hunky metrosexual men in Pittsburgh to go out for a run, passing me as I walked home from work. Bless them and their beautiful toned biceps.
-Friendly visitors and one's curiosity about anything on the internet can make a boring desk job go by in a snap.
-Cakes baked from scratch are very impressive! I've seen two baked this weekend, a yellow layer cake with magenta buttercream frosting, and a green tea cake with neon green frosting.
And finally,
-If you get prescribed a medicine for sore throat called 'Magic Swizzle G', it will definitely not taste magical. It will taste like sh*t. Then, after you swish and gargle, you have to swallow it, "*" and all. Thank goodness my blog always tastes good. And I still have those mints from a dead woman on hand if you need one.