Nicole
...

It annoys the hell out of me when people assume they know what I am when they see me. A fragile little blond girl who probably doesn't do much and shops and isn't informed.

So, to the universe and anyone who's ever thought that about me - fuck you.

(Yet another reason why this blog is rated NC-17)

I was out today chopping wood and happened to be on my last piece which, of course, was a nasty chunk with some hidden knots in it. We've got an ax but when knots come into play, we bought a wedge and a small sledgehammer to beat the wedge into the wood and force said chunk of wood to scream mercy and crack. So here I am, minding my own business and hammering steadily at the wedge which by the way is almost through, when I hear some guy go "Excuse me!" and look up to see him traipsing through our front yard like he's thinking of coming right into the back with me but he stops right at our little gate.

"Are you trying to chop some wood?"
At first I'm thinking he lives nearby and the hammering is kind of loud and he wants me to tone it down or something so I say, "This is my last piece."
"What are you using?"
Uhm... "Well I've got the wedge here and this small sledgehammer..." Why is he asking this?
"You should get a maul. It's made for chopping wood."

I kind of flatline because I don't know wtf this has to do with anything because right next to me is this massive pile of kindling and decent sized chunks for the fireplace so I kind of nod and go, "Okay." I guess Mr. Dude also failed to see the ax shining in the porch light. And for the record, I know what a maul is. What I should have told him was, "Yeah, I know that. But when we went to Home Depot to get one, they were all out so we just settled on this." Besides, even with the maul, made for wood or no, some of this crap is still really knotted, hence the whole wedge-sledgehammer thing, which is exactly what the wedge was made for.

I'm sure he was just trying to be nice and helpful, but quickly after I felt rather indignant. I get the feeling he saw some little blond girl in her black leather jacket (fake leather and yeah, I was lazy and didn't care what I wore - I've chopped wood in nicer clothes and probably looked really weird doing it but seriously, it's not that dirty a job) hammering away at a big chunk of wood and thought I had no idea what I was doing and was just making it up as I went along or something. It just bugged me. We have an ax, and maybe if you'd come along five minutes earlier you'd have seen me using it and using it well I might add. One good swing and BAM! Two pieces of wood. I picked out some real nice ones today that split with one chop. Easiest wood chopping day I've had yet, actually. Maybe I should have gotten up and shown him the ax and then held out my hands and been like, "I'm not stupid, I've done this before, as you can see by the little calluses beginning to form for this year."

Grr. I just hate it when people think I'm weak. It's one of the few things on this Earth that drives me nuts. You know, I used to want to mow the lawn just to prove to my dad that I could. After a while, I knew I didn't have to prove it by then, but then at that point he figured I was old enough (not strong enough, old enough mind you) to mow the lawn and I didn't want to do it anymore.

*huff*

So that's my rant for the week. A bit unnecessary, but I had to get it out. Just something that bugged me (obviously).


Currently: DUDE!
Nicole
Ah, there are so many things I'd like to say, most of them so far gone down the road of politically incorrect (like "There, America has elected a black person, now all you racist fucks can shut the hell up."). Suffice to say I hope everyone realizes that Jesus Obama will not heal the country with some magic touch like he promises. Every candidate promises the same thing. We've been promised energy independence since Reagan. And before you start jumping to conclusions about what I believe in when you have no idea, leaving defensive or ugly comments and so forth, let me enlighten you.

Politicians, all of them, are essentially scum. If you don't think that even in the remotest of senses, you're a complete fool. Politics means power and if you don't think that half (or probably more) of Congress and everyone else chosen to an office doesn't think of you or the people of your state when they vote for bills and so on, you're a fool. That's why it's scary when people run after candidates like lemmings toward a cliff. I think readers and writers of science fiction who pay close attention can easily get freaked out. It's like watching the reality of a world, or for now just the nation, get stalked by 1984. I could go into details, but I'll just get all worked up and want to throw things.

Why the hell do you think I write fantasy and SF and even dabble in romance and horror?

Anyway, my early prediction for the future is that gas will go up again. Hope everyone has enjoyed their $2.something gallons. It was nice while it lasted.

On a lighter note, head over to Alternative Ramblings to hear about my latest writing escapades. I promise you it's good stuff. :)


Currently: *sigh* Just tired.
Nicole
There are other things I should be doing. "Should" being the operative word here. The word I'm not supposed to use according to Neil Fiore. It has to do with procrastination. But I'm not really procrastinating the things I have in my brain because they're not really important and procrastinating them doesn't have any major affect on my life. See below:

Should be writing reviews. That way I can get rid of the Blood+ anime on my computer and free up some much needed disk space.

Should be...aw crap what was it? Not writing, I'm doing that tomorrow. Technically I guess writing could fall into the "should" area but I refuse to let it. No, there was something else...

Ah forget it, I can't remember.

Anyway, I seem to have fallen into some sort of 80s loop lately. It started off with a really bad movie which I'm almost afraid to list out of pure shame (though I'll review it sooner or later so everyone'll find out) - no wait, that's not quite true. Jeff Goldblum started it off. See, he's going to be on Law and Order (one of them anyway) as a cop and that got me all "goody-goody-gumdrops" because I haven't seen Jeff in quite some time and I rather enjoy the man. Then I started thinking about other random things related to Jeffy and then in that weird movie-premonition thing my sister rubbed off on me, one day dad was flipping and landed on Encore - one of the scrambled channels (though it's really not all that bad - I've watched entire movies in light fuzz from time to time when there's nothing else on) - and for shits and giggles sometimes we wait to see if we can figure out what's playing. ...Or rather I think he lingers on it so he can see if I can figure out what's playing (and sadly with my movie knowledge, more often than not, I can). Whatever the case, I soon started cracking up even as he asked, "Is this that one weird movie...Earth Girls Are Easy?" Yes. Yes it was. GOD every time I think of that movie I start laughing my ass off because it is so bad. I mean, retardedly lame. The whole thing is just...awkward. And even though I'm ashamed to say I like it, I'm still enough of an idiot to say if you haven't watched it, you ought to. Just...because. Seriously.

Of course, we didn't watch it in fuzz. Dad's too impatient for that. But I remembered that even though I've never been particularly tickled by Jeff Goldblum, I clearly remembered that he was hot in that movie. Yeah. Shut up. Don't ask me how this happens. Sooo then I had this annoying need to watch the movie scramble-free just so I could see Jeff step out of...I think it was a tanning booth...looking fine. And I did. And it was good. Too bad he's 56 now. Yeah. And he still looks good. I don't mean the "I wanna jump his bones" good, I mean he's still handsome. Surprisingly handsome, actually. ........... Er, anyway, he still looks good. Hey, shut up. I know what you're thinking, reader o'mine, and you can just stop. I know every one of you has someone older that you still think is hot. Bruce Willis still looks really good. Besides, Sandra thinks Jack Nicholson is hot so the rest of you can kiss my butt. >;D

Adding to the 80s drivel is my sudden awakening to A-ha, which, much to my chagrin (well, sort of), a girl younger than me remembered while I stood there like, "Yeah, the song goes like this..." Course, I suck at remembering bands even now. I'll forget who the hell sang what while looking for it in Winamp so I guess I have no reason to feel like an idiot. Besides, I was what, 3? when that band was be-bopping around? I rediscovered them while at the VGCats website and watched the Take On Me - Literal Video Version. ("Is this your house??") Well done singing, I must say. So then I started perusing more A-ha and found "Hunting High and Low" and watched the video and got all girly because it works so well for a new idea I've had which was, ironically enough, inspired by Labyrinth, more 80s goodness.

Buuut my current fixation is Jeff Goldblum. Not so much for hotness...I know, you're all weirding out aren't you? Don't worry, it's not like I'm fantasizing or anything. Though I do still need help. Probably because I need a man. *sigh* Cripes. Let's not get into that, shall we? Otherwise I'll just go on forever, and ever, and ever, and ever............

SO. Jeff. I'd already made up my mind long before any of this went down that I wanted to see that Law and Order show, mostly because I wanted to see how he was as a cop. Note that I used the past tense of "want" in that sentence. While on IMDB, I found him as Detective Michael Raines...but there was no mention of his new Law and Order stint. I did a bit of looking around and apparently last year in March NBC came out with a show called Raines in which Jeff is a detective who happens to solve cases whilst conversing with dead people - except they're not ghosts so much as really vivid figments of his imagination, so it's not like they just show up and say, "Oh by the way, so-and-so killed me." Sadly, the show only lasted 8 episodes before it disappeared. Not surprising. Why? Well, if you use TV.com as any sort of example, you can see people giving the show ratings of 10 out of 10 and nothing below an 8 for each episode on average. Yet it went off while shitty shows remain on. Kind of like The Class. That show was freaking funny, and yet it got canceled while a really UNfunny show like Till Death mananged to drag on for two seasons. Frankly, I think it was poor advertising on NBC's part, which I don't understand. A star like Jeff Goldblum getting his own show on prime time television? Where the hell did you people go? What were you smoking?

And why am I defending this show? Because I've seen two episodes of it already and honestly, if I'd seen it while it was on TV, I'd make a point to watch it every night. Though things seem to fall in place a bit easily (there's something about the plots that seem simple to put together or something, it's hard to put my finger on it), it's interesting. I keep watching not just to find out the whodunit, but also because it's fun to watch Jeff as a cop - sorry, detective - pulling a gun on people and wearing a bullet proof vest. Madeline Stowe is in the show too as a psychiatrist who's got to work with Raines because one of the other cops saw him talking to himself (which he is essnetially doing), though so far his character's been pretty much an ass to her. It's just....fun. The whole show I mean. I don't watch the other cop shows because they're bummy and just...I dunno...meh. Snippets of police procedure that may or may not be correct. Though I do admit I have watched a handful of episodes of the SVU one because it had Ice-T and I liked the other two main characters - one of which I didn't realize had played Casey Jones until my dad pointed it out. Casey - from hockey stick toting vigilante to high-ranking cop. Good form.

IMDB has the full episodes of Raines, though they are missing...well wait, maybe they're not missing anything. TV.com doesn't have any information on the supposed episode 8...and episode 7 claims to be the season finale so who knows? Either way, if you're interested you can judge for yourself.

I think that's all I really have to ramble about. I'm sure this entry's getting pretty long by now. See? I always write more when I'm not expected to. I should just go with the whole spontaneity thing. Oh, before I do go, I should introduce you to my newfound joys of life - Troy and Jerry. No, I'm not dating two guys (as though you thought that anyway). I listened to Bob and Tom while going to work in Illinois and other than that, the radio stations pretty much sucked ass. But here, oh dear sweet Lord I'm saved. 103.1 is my love, with all that is awesome rock, and most of it's new stuff. Not like that crap rock station in Champaign 107.1. Troy and Jerry are both mildly insane, love the UFC (kickass!), and aren't afraid to say shit that in many cases would get you yelled at by someone. Want an example? Ok, you asked for it. Retarded people who have killed someone have lost their usefulness in society. I'll let you guess where that went. You can listen to their past broadcasts through that link. Some days are better than others. Like the one that had me and my mom laughing our asses off - it was like a brief make fun of white trash radio show. They were basically acting out what had happened at a trailer park when someone not even involved with the domestic dispute ended up getting arrested.

Ok, I think that's really it this time. I'll up date my crazy link section now, provided Geocities isn't a bitch. Then maybe I'll watch some more Raines and do some reviews. I don't work tomorrow JACKPOT so I'll get to stay up late (whoohoo!) and do some stuff before I wake up tomorrow and finish my book or at least finish the majority of the massive battle. It's due the 30th but with the way things have been going this semester, it doesn't really matter. Haha.

And if you're ever bored, I highly recommend this.

Ta!


Currently: Cute and a lil sexy.
Nicole
I'm a big fat liar.

Ok, so I'm obviously never going to write about residency. It's long gone by now and I don't think any of you really care anyway, and the rest of you were there so you know how it went down. If anyone really wants to know about the battle (which was really just a massive attack with bread and napkins - mostly napkins) you can email me and ask. I'm not even sure who reads this these days - I know a handful of you do, though who knows? Readership may have dropped off from my long leave of absence.

Nothing major is going on in my life. As usual. I eat, I sleep, I work, I get my car fixed, I eat a lot more chocolate than I ought to, I write, I indulge in music, I read. Speaking of which I need to go to the library still. Maybe I'll do that Thursday.

So yeah. That's my update. Not very inspiring is it? I don't even have anything to ramble about. The birthday has come and gone and involved cake, books, DVDs...and I think that's all I bought so far.

And for those of you paying attention to my progress, the book is almost done. Woot.


Currently: Yeah, I dunno.
Nicole
I really do plan on writing a longer post at some point. Really!

Anywho, in case you didn't notice, I've revamped the links at the side. Half you guys don't do jack to your blogs or sites or whatever and I've added in my Seton Hill peeps in support of them and also to try and pimp them out as much as possible (every little bit of exposure helps) for their current/future writing careers. The list is small now, but I'm sure as people throw their sites at me, it'll grow to a sizeable amount.

Things to look forward to (ok, seriously, I'll write it down in my planner and make myself sit down and do this things somewhere in a gap in time in the future): The Seton Hill residency that includes a paper battle, aliens, and chupacabras, overall goings on in my life, and my brief yet interesting escapade with a large pane of glass. I feel like I'm missing something but maybe that's it. *shrug*


Currently: Eh?? I have how long till my deadline?! (actually no, I'm not worried at all, which is a really, really big change for me)
Nicole
Yes, I know I need to post something substantial.

Yes, I'll get to it. I just don't know when. No, I don't feel like it now. It's the Lazy Bitch in me.

China sucks ass. Those in power there can go fuck themselves. I'll say it because I'm meaner than the Dalai Lama and I know a ton of us are thinking it. And so in that spirit, I hope every nation beats the crap out of them in the events.

I had more really random stuff but, as usual, if I don't write it down, I forget it. If I remember I'll add it later.


See? Random.
Nicole
I'm sorry, but I've just gotta get this out.

Ok, so yesterday Tim Russert died. Now it's going to be on the news for at least a week. I'll be flipping, land on a news channel and say, "Yes, Tim Russert is still dead."

Whatever. Now at B&N people are going to be coming in to buy one or both of his books - demand will be ridiculous and we can't order any in because you know what? We never sold enough while he was alive so we didn't carry any in the distribution centers but OH all of a sudden because the man is dead everyone and their grandma is going to want a copy. Tough shit because we won't have it.

But here's what really got my goat about 5 seconds ago. On the MSN homepage I see a picture of Russert and next to that is someone's quote: "A Loss for the Entire Nation."

No. No it's not.

To be fair, it sucks for all those close to him, family, friends, and whatnot, but the entire nation? Give me a fucking break. I didn't give a shit about Tim Russert and you know what? When my father dies, do you think anyone but friends and family are going to give a shit? My father is trying to help children with disabilities and what did Russert do? Interview politicians and deliver news. Did I ever watch him? No. I can't stand it when people generalize like that and when someone is made out to be the best damn human being in the world after they die. Why is it such a big deal when a celebrity dies? Why the fuck do people care?

You know, the only time I was ever actually bummed to hear of someone famous who died was Steve Irwin. That's because Steve did truly productive things with his life, helping animals and teaching people about them. But here, Russert is not a loss for the entire nation. I don't care at all, so that statment is automatically false. I also don't care if I sound really rude right now. Yes, while Russert himself can't be replaced, especially for friends and family which is where his death actually matters, for the rest of the nation, people will forget after a week and guess what? A new journalist will take his spot and the world will still turn. I just don't see why people who didn't know him personally keep saying, "Omg, it's such a tragedy" or "I'm so devastated" or "America will miss him." Shut the hell up. Geez. The Holocaust was a fucking tragedy, okay? 9/11 was devastating. America won't give a rat's ass once they stop playing the story on the news. Tim Russert dying, while it sucks, is no different or special than the death of any other person who does something useful in the world.

I'm not saying I'm cool that he died. I'm not saying I laughed when I heard the news or something equally heartless. I'm just saying that I think it's ridiculous people react this way to one man's death when countless other people in the country who are just as important die every day and not a second thought is given to that.


Ugh, please. Give me a break.
Nicole
I haven't posted anything here for a while because....well...nothing's happening. The snow has melted, the rains have come, and the temperature can't seem to decide if it wants to stay cold or if warming up would be a good idea. So far it seems to be content staying in the 50s. *bleh*

Work is work. I'm waiting for the next round of employee discountage so I can go insane because I have around $100 in gift card money *woot!* since I'm smart and killed two birds with one stone. *sneaky smile* Though I don't really have any more space in my room to put books so I don't really know what I think I'm going to do...I'll figure it out.

Gas prices suck. But anyone with a car knows that. Heck, anyone without a car knows that. And politicians are idiots. If you think Obama is going to fix everything, you're an idiot. If you think Hilary is going to fix anything, you're an idiot. If you think McCain is going to fix anything, you're an idiot. Why? Aside from each candidate's issues (i.e. if you tell me Obama didn't know his reverend spouted hate-speech for 20 years, I'm sorry, but you're a fucking moron just like he is. Especially since now he admitted yeah, he may have heard something, which still makes him a moron because that only shows he has severely poor character judgement, but that's just one example), everyone forgets that Congress is ultimately responsible for 90% of the shit that goes down. Sure, the President can veto stuff, but don't you remember your Constitution tests and all that? If 2/3 of Congress gets together, they can effectively say "Fuck your veto" and that's that. By the way, I'm not defending Bush - I think he's done an incredible fuck up on this "war" but for different reasons than most people say and if I mention those reasons here people are going to think I'm a horrible person and I'm not going to get into it. Suffice to say you can't be politically correct or nice in a war. If you go to war, you fucking go to war. None of this nicey nice bullshit.

Ok, anyway, I can't keep on like that or I'll just get pissed and rant forver. In case you still read this blog and haven't heard either from Megan's blog or from the lovely couple in person, Megan and Derek are getting a house. Feel the awesomeness. Haha, I don't even have my own apartment (but it's saving me money so meh) and they're getting a house. I should go nomad and travel the US.

Hmm...what else is there to say without sounding like a total freak? Freak? Yes, there are things I could mention as casual thoughts but I think they'd weird people out so I won't... *snicker* Writing is going well. Lots of revision to be done. Fanfiction has turned into my escape from serious writing, which in many ways is retarded because I used to write seriously as an escape. Not to say that I don't still enjoy what I'm working on. I've had a few moments of "Ohyeah, awesome." But I do miss fantasy. Fantasy is my first love, always will be. This one is also more difficult because I just had to go and bring Earth into the mix. So now I have to be kind of Earth-centered in terms of technology and logic. Sometimes I just want to go "Fuck you Earth" and "Fuck you Scott - I love you, but God.." (Scott's my main character who wasn't supposed to be, the bastard - can you believe I'm still coming to terms with that?).

*checks list o'stuff to do*

Fuck. I still have to read Lies of Locke Lamora and I had it here but didn't have the time and now I'm third in line for the library to read it. It's due the 27th and then someone else gets it. Sonofabitch. Now I have to think up something else.

"REVISE EVERYTHING." Yep, that sounds about right.

I need chocolate...


Pretty self-explanatory
Nicole
I was out walking with my little sister a few minutes ago, and as we headed down the street for the bike path, I suddenly remembered something funny that happened to me and my dad a while back while we were walking. I don't know if it was November or December when it happened - I just remember it was freaking cold at that point in time. For some reason that day dad decided to put on his backpack. At one point before then he'd asked if people would think it was weird if he went out wearing it. I said I didn't think so because it looked like an obvious training method (or so I thought).

Ok, so we headed out, bundled up, dad with his massive pack, hiking poles, and me bundled with my one hiking stick. We'd reached the Domino's about a block away from the house when I stop him, as a car is turning into the parking lot and he's got music on, and I don't think he's paying close attention. The car, to my bewilderment, stops in front of us and the driver rolls his window down. For the record, he looked like a completely normal guy, probably just picking up some pizza. Dad's just realizing just what's going down and we get this:

Guy: "You guys look pretty cold!"
Dad: "Yeah, it's pretty chilly out here."
Guy glances at me and then dad again: "You guys want a ride somewhere?"
Me: ?
Dad: "No, we're good. Thanks though."
Guy (a little uncertain like he's sad he can't help or something): "Ok then. Take care!"
Dad: "Sure. Thanks."

It was a friendly exchange and the guy rolled up his window and pulled forward, we continued our walk and he eventually went to get his pizza. Dad just kept moseying on like no big deal, but I thought the whole incident was kind of random until suddenly I thought about what we looked like and I laughed and poked Dad.

"Dude, I think that guy thought we were homeless!"

I mean, think about it. We're all wrapped up in coats and fleece, walking sticks, dad with a scruffy goatee, carrying a big backpack. That has all the potential of homeless father and daughter with the father carrying all their worldly possessions as they trek across the city/state/country/whatever. The more I thought about it, the more I became convinced the guy was trying to be a good Samaritan and give us a lift in his warm car to wherever we were headed.

I've been called Jenna and Elizabeth, been told I walk like a pimp, been confused for a guy (Halloween costume), thought to be 14 when I was 16, 21 when I was 24, and perhaps an alien.

And now I've been thought to be homeless.

Awesome.

Currently: Not homeless
Nicole
I realized today as I put up other photos that I never posted the photos I got from residency. I figured I'd put them up because A.) I look cute in both of them, B.) You can better see my cute short hair, and C.) They're the most recent pictures I've got. =P These were taken with my critique partners. I'm not exactly sure why we take pictures of our groups, but oh well.

June Residency (obviously. I think the date from the camera kind of gives that away).




January Residency




I'm letting my hair grow out again. I miss being able to put it into a clip. But I always have done the whole hair-length-altnernating thing. The only difference this time is that I have some layers.
Ok, that's it! =P

Nicole
Been a while, hasn't it?

I'm erasing old names from my address book. I know I'll never call many of these people again, and I'm willing to bet that 99% of them have either changed addresses or, even more likely, changed phone numbers. For example, I was told that Ryan is in Florida now, so I'm willing to bet he's changed over to a phone number with a corresponding Florida area code.

It's kind of weird, this erasing of the address book. I need to do the same thing with my email addresses. It's sort of like erasing the past, or some of it anyway. Old information of old friends who might still think of me from time to time as I do then. Or not. Who knows? Some that I might even consider long gone and far away may be reading this blog, but I'll never know.

...Damn. I have a lot of S names in here. Oh, I'm not erasing everyone, of course. Some people get to stay in here because I still contact them or could use their contact info in a pinch, should I suddenly weird out and send them something. It's been known to happen.

I have a lot of things on the table to bring you in the future. Ok, not really, more like just two. Maybe three if it matters. There isn't a whole lot going on in my life to relate. I go to work at B&N, I eat chocolate like the world is going to end tomorrow, I sleep and love it, and I write and read and keep listening to music that probably qualifies me as a dork but I don't care. All I have to offer in the future is the Dumbass Story, which I plan to write very soon because it's on my list of things to do and continuously putting it off is pissing me off, and I'll also relate the tale of dad nearly breaking his ankle while we were on a "mountain." I put that in quotes because I don't consider the undulations of the earth around here to be mountains. I consider them hills. Large hills, but still hills. Though I think that'll come as a blog instead of a story because it's kind of short, though it ended up with a second part. Heh.

I like to think that maybe since today is sunny and bright, winter will finally have whooshed itself out and spring will finally come. It's been hanging on here and the grass is all sad and mashed from the amount of snow (which we may still get but as much as I enjoy snow, even I'm ready for spring now).

Well, things to do today (like laundry and lunch and critiquing) so I'll be off. You'd better be wearing green today or people are going to pinch you. ;)

Update at 4:34 pm: I'm sitting here eating yet more chocolate. That's right - I just bought two more bags of candy and as I worked on a fellow crit partner's story, I realized there has been a severe spike in my normal chocolate consumption. I unwrapped another Hershey Kiss pondering this and suddenly thought several things at once which amounted to a generalization of sexual frustration. The idea gave me pause. Hmm. Could that be it? Am I sucking down candy because I'm not getting any? Fuck. ...Or lack thereof I guess. Oh well, I haven't gained any weight at all even with all this candy, so meh.

P.S. Highlight of the day? I got to play with a ferret today. I never knew Petco sold ferrets. Ah, good times. (yeah, I know, it couldn't be a puppy, right? My sister is right - weird stories kids. Weird stories. Haha.). That was fun.


Get yourself some four leaf clovers!
XD
Nicole
My sister rocks the universe.

Nyahahahaha.

(aww shitty, they took down the picture of the firefighters carrying a fan)

Oh, and Epinions rules and Macs suck. (and snowboarders need love too)

*end shameless plugs*
Nicole
TA DA! I'm back.

Of course, I'm sure many of you were unaware that I ever left. Hehe. Yes. Just as I disappeared for a week in June, I did so again a few weeks ago. January 4th -10th was residency week. Technically residency ended the 9th, but since I realized I was paying for an extra night in the room, I stayed the last night and left at 6am the next day. Hey, my roomies were leaving early to catch their respective flights, and with nothing else to do, I headed out (and took two wrong turns...again. But I'll get to that).

It's hard to describe what it's like going to school a two weeks every year. It's definitely different, but quite lovely. It makes sense, since we're all working on books, and since some people have families in addition to jobs and such, adding on classes would get a bit cumbersome. It all works out.

The 4th I left around 1 o'clock, headed for Greensburg, and not too long into the trip, missed a turn. Construction has fucked up everything around here, but I should have known better anyway because I made it last time. I don't know why I became a total idiot this time. I went back 6 miles, took an off ramp (I figured even if I ended up cruising around a little town, by God I'd be able to find out how to get back to the main road), picked a direction that made sense, and managed to go the right away. After I passed Altoona, I screwed up again. Instead of taking the exit I needed, I failed to check my directions (actually I had, but I'd just looked at the wrong piece of information. I thought I was to go 58 miles on the road I was driving on - not true). So about 23 miles later, I'm thinking to myself "This doesn't look the same" though a part of me writes that off as "Last time you drove to Greensburg it was summer, so it's not going to look exactly the same" while the rest keeps insisting something isnt' right. The second part is right, because I see a sign for Blue Knob State Park and that's something I definitely do not remember. So again I pull off, pull to the side, and examine my map and directions.

Fuck.

So I turn around and head on back to where I screwed up, and get on the right road and don't screw up anymore. Funny part is that after my initial mistake, one of my roomies called and before we hung up, I said "Yeah, I'll be there soon, if I don't screw up again, hahaha." Don't say things like that, otherwise you'll end up doing it.

Residency was good times. Learned some helpful things and hung out with fun people. Got lost in Greensburg a few times trying to get from point A to point B (if any of you ever thought the one way streets in Bloomington or Champaign sucked, then get your ass into Greensburg and you'll shut your mouth within the first five minutes). Honestly, I can navigate my way around ISU or Champaign's one ways without any problems. They're simple, make sense, and are almost always in grid format. Greensburg? No such luck. I'm never living in that town, and I'm glad I didn't get all excited and take an apartment there. *barf* Oh, I'm sure I'd be able to navigate it eventually, but I wouldn't be too keen on trying. You all know I hate driving in town as it is. I prefer just an open road, highways you can zoom ahead on, without much interference. Drive around in Wyoming for a while. Hell yes. Speaking of which, I do miss random country cruises with Sandra. You can't really do that here. Too hilly and not enough country roads. And the country roads you do get on aren't in grid format either, so you might end up in the friggin' backwoods of nowhere before back on a road to town.

Back to residency, yeah good stuff. Haha. What else is there to say? From 9am to 9pm (practically) we take class, eat, class, and go to readings or chat with mentors. Oh, and find out what's wrong with whatever piece of writing you've sumbitted for critiques. Readings are fun because you get a taste of books that may eventually be on the shelves. Sometimes you'll hear a piece and think, "If that doesn't get snapped up by an editor, there is no hope in the world." *coughLisacough* XD We do wine socials and other events too. So for those of you who remember my fancy, frilly cream crsuhed-velvet-looking dress, I wrote that. *woot*

I also played Apples to Apples for the first time (highly recommended if you haven't played it), realized The Hampton is a fantastic hotel (omg, the comforters!), and have decided that I have absolutely no gaydar whatsoever. I think it was Katie and I who found this out during school, but now it's been confirmed (but honestly, I don't think any of us would have noticed it, but then who knows?). Because of this, I have also realized that it's almost true that all the best guys are either gay, taken, or in the military. NOTE THAT I SAID ALMOST. I don't want any backlashes. For me, it seems to be that all the guys I'm attracted to fall under one of these categores: Player in disguise, in the military, gay, taken, or unavailable because they're Scottish/Irish/English/Australian and therefore overseas or actors I'll never even get near. Ah well.

Back on topic. Residency was cool. Greensburg is bigger than I thought (bigger than State College, definitely). On my way home, I first missed my exit ramp (it was freaking dark and I couldn't see where the damn turn was. It was agreed during residency that Pennsylvania has a lack of light in many areas as well as signs in important places, with too many signs in unnecessary places), so turned around at a church we'd turned around in before, and got on. Then when I was on some random country road that connected the roads I needed, I missed the second wonky little turn I needed to make. So with a "FUCK!" I spun my little car around and headed back with a mindset of "If anyone gets behind me and thinks I'm going too slow, they can kiss my ass." But I made it and had no more mess ups and drove home in the early morning light. Going home that early has its perks; I made record friggin' time.

Now I have to continue work on my story while reading various books. Yay! I'm still working at Barnes & Noble. Yay! *dances because of discounts* It's friggin' cold, there's snow on the ground (YAY! For the snow, not the 19 degree weather), and I had chocolate doughnuts this morning. Life is good.

I have a great story that's going to be titled "The Dumbass" and placed in The Library with all the other stories. The title may not seem to give the story justice, but HONESTLY, if you knew...well, you will, so I'll let you judge. It has yet to be written, but I'll give you a few tidbits to serve as a teaser trailer.

"In a house where a father will do anything to protect his family, the sound of breaking glass at 2 in the morning is never something he wants to hear. A standoff will begin. A shotgun will be fired. And the intruder at the door will not leave."

O_o

P.S. So the answer to your question about egging my house, buddy, is if you do, you may very well get your face blown off by a shotgun. (I found the irony of our conversation and what I found out when I got home to be insane).


TRY IT!