Robot Emotion

Though  titled “Sad Robot,” I think it looks rather happy.  One of my favorites…

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Game of Thrones – Season II

The only way to celebrate.

Winter is coming. I’m so ready!

Update Pending

Revisions to this blog – both design and creative content – are currently being contemplated. If you have any suggestions let me know!

Until soon, World. :)

Green Pages

Don’t you hate that day when you arrive home and find 10 lbs. of paper on your doorstep?  You know what I’m talking about.  Those dreaded white and yellow pages.  

As soon as I get them I promptly carry them across the street to the paper recycling bin.  Why do they print all of those things out?  It seems so wasteful.  No one ever asked me if I wanted a phone book.  If I needed one.  To be sure, some folks absolutely use and need a tangible phone book in their home.  Thanks to smart phones and my trusty MacBook, I have no use for it.  But how do I make it stop?

Check it out.  Sign up if you would like to opt out.  The idea is to make this like the no call registry.  I don’t have to take that extra trip to the recycle bin.  And somewhere a tree is thanking me.  Karma.  Love it.  

Yellow Green Pages.  What a good idea.

Moments of Blinding Brilliance Part 1 – “Express Bus”

At this point, Moments of Blinding Brilliance is a 3 Part “Saga in Stupidity.”  Just random little stories from my life that really seem to capture those fleeting junctures in time where I (and maybe you) just want to look around me (at all of those who are bearing witness to my daft behavior) and say “I’m really not an idiot.  I promise.”  If I were a betting woman (and I’m not at all… it makes my stomach hurt), I would wager that Moments posts become something of a regular occurrence here on DireMirth.  Most of you who know me would agree.  I’m about 9 parts “on top of it,” and 1 part… well I’ll just let the posts speak for themselves, shall we?

“Express Bus”

About a month ago my journeys led me to Portland, Oregon.  It’s a beautiful place full of recycle bins, pine trees, amazing brunch restaurants, a plethora of trust fund hippies, and more Chaco wearing groovy people than you can count.  Needless to say I love it.  What I also loved about Portland (and Europe) was all of the great public transport.  If I didn’t have to drive, I totally wouldn’t.  I mean, I love my new little old Volvo.  It’s just rad.  But if I could hop on a bus or a train to bumble around my city the old Volvo wouldn’t get out much at all.  I digress.

Picture this: I’m chilling on a park bench in lovely, sunny Portland.  It’s beautiful.  I ran on the waterfront, had a yummy lunch, drank french pressed “Stump Town” coffee, and wandered the streets of downtown.  I was happy.  It was 5:00 on Friday and I sat down to finish my book in the park until my Sushi Date got off work.

Pay close attention here, because the timing is just so perfectly insane.

*Ring. *Ring.

Sushi date: “Where are you?”

Me: “Reading downtown.”

Sushi date: “Cool. I’m at home, so just catch the 14 or 15 bus at…..”

(I begin walking here towards the directional streets indicated.  I was only a block away you see.)

Me: “Got it.  Well there’s a bus pulling up so I’m gonna hop on it. See you in a few…”  (if I only knew…)

I glanced at Mr. Buses numbers.  There was a 1 and a 5.  15 right?  Bought the ticket.  Sat down.  Read the last few paragraphs of my book.  Ah, done.  *Sigh.  We cross over the Hawthorne Bridge and instead of going straight, Mr. Bus turns left.  Hmmm.

Me: (to Mr. Buses driver) “Excuse me.  Does this bus go up to 30th Street?”

Driver: “30th?  In Portland?”

Me: (stares blankly while simultaneously beginning to freak out a little) “Can I get off here?”

Drive: “Oh no!  Why we’re on the interstate.  This bus doesn’t make any stops between Downtown Portland and Vancouver.”

Me: “Vancouver?”

Kindly, Apathetic Gent Listening in: “Washington.”

MOMENT OF BLINDING BRILLIANCE.

Me: (commences with the panicking)

*Ring.

Sushi date: “You here?”

Me: “I’m on the wrong bus.”

Sushi date: “Just get off at the next stop.”

Me: “Oh I will.  But I accidentally got on the 105.”

Sushi date: “I don’t know the 105.”

Me:  “Well why would you.  It’s the express bus (sheepishly) to Vancouver.”

That’s right folks.  I got on the one-way, no-stops, express bus to Vancouver, WA.  On Friday evening.  In rush-hour traffic.  The stars and planets that had to align for that mess of cosmic insanity to happen must have been impressive.  

How did I get back?  I hear you ask.  Well I took another bus to the Max (that’s the metro) Station where I proceeded through 11 stops until Sushi Date picked my sad self up on the corner of “You’re an Idiot Street” and “How did you do that? Drive.”

We missed sushi that night.  

You see my little jaunt up to “the ‘Couve” took about an hour and forty-five minutes.  I am, as you might have guessed, really super smart.

And so Part 1 ends.  But the Saga, oh it continues.

Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog

If you have a spare $3.99 (of course you do, you were just thinking about buying a latte about now anyway) laying around you should all invest in Joss Whedon’s brilliant internet master-villian epic, Dr. Horrible’s Singalong Blog! Sounds amazing doesn’t it? Check out the main site for all the info. Basically this little gem was written during the dark, dark days of the writers strike last year. It’s an idea. A new way to buck the system -to test it’s limits and, hopefully, move entertainment further into this century. And we are all ready for that.

iPhone 3G – 16gig Yeah. It’s that good.

I flipped out a month or so ago when Apple unveiled the new iPhone 3G.  The source of my hysteria stemmed mostly from the price, $199 and $299 respectively.  Other design features and speed improvements were also groovy, but it was the affordability that won me over.

Yesterday I did it.  I logged into Sprint.com for the last time and drove on over the Apple Store.  I first called AT&T and they told me that they had no iPhones at any store in the city BUT they would be happy to order me one. Hmmm.  Order me one?  I’m from the instant gratification generation.  I put the “i” in iPhone.  But, I am not without reason.

“So, AT&T how long is the wait?”

“Uhh. 14-21 days.”

Click.

*Ring.  *Ring.

“Apple Store.  This is cool guy.  What can I do for you?”

“Got any iPhones.”

“Sure. 16 gig only.  Black and white.”

“Word.”

Click.

So I went.  I love the Apple Store.  I waited in line for about 50 min with other people who think Apple is just as ridiculously amazing as I do.  I also read two chapters of “Claudius the God” because I’m the nerd that always has a book on me.  Once I got in the store it took all of 9 min to set me up.  Bye bye Sprint.  Hello AT&T.  We broke up in college when you were called Cingular and didn’t get reception in my dorm room.  But you’re cooler now so it works.

Perhaps I shall write a post soon extolling the virtues of the iPhone.  Right now I can’t think of anything better to say that “OMG!!!  IT’S SO AMAZING YOU DON’T EVEN UNDERSTAND!!!”  And that’s not particularly helpful.

Oh, and I had a PhoneSaber fight in the office yesterday.  I was in sci-fi heaven.  It’s love.

IntoSalsa – Lesson 1

Tonight has marked the end of my second Salsa lesson.  That’s Salsa dancing, not salsa the yummy Mexican side dish.

In my short tenure with the Salsa folks I have learned a few things.  They are not particularly important things, but let’s face it, not all the things we learn from day to day are all that crucial.

5. Salsa lessons NEVER start on time.  I don’t mind this at all, I just think it’s worth noting.  My 6 p.m. lesson tonight started at 6:25.  It feels very cool.  Very Latin.

4. Apparently practicing Salsa in ones living room is funny to observe.  My sister actually asked me if I was aware that I was doing the same three moves over and over again.  I said, “Yes.  That’s all we learned this week.”  She replied, “Well, you look silly.”  Thanks, Julie.  Thanks a lot.

3. Dancing Salsa employs new muscles in my calves.  In fact, the muscles are so infrequently used it has actually effected my running.  Every 1/4 mile or so I have to stop and stretch my right leg due to severe cramping.  Salsa I think you are fun, but I’ve had a long, long relationship with running.  You can’t break us up.  Stop trying.

2. The folks that take Salsa lessons are super cute.  Most of them are couples.  You can just tell that this is one of those “couple” things they are doing together.  The old couples are cute.  The young ones are cute.  Oh, bless.  Some of the older fellas who are there with their wives are priceless.  You can actually imagine how much prodding the wife had to do over their 30+ year marriage.  I get to see them in the place where he finally caved.  I love it.  Me, I’m there with Becky.  She did not have to be prodded over 30 years – one random email and she was in.  It’s a good couple activity and a good friend activity too.

1. Dancing by yourself is great.  Throw someone else in the mix and it gets all kinds of insane.  You can be fine -  on beat and everything.  Then the other person, a kindly gent I’m sure, is trying to lead you.  He may or may not be on beat.  You may or may not understand his signals to do various moves.  It’s complicated and frustrating.  But, Salsa is a partner dance.  Picture me getting used to it.

So far Salsa has been delightful.  I look forward to my further Latin music inspired adventures.  They have been interesting so far.  Not to mention that I’m sure there will be some happy South American boys over at the Red Room.  I stepped on a lot of feet last month, pre-lessons of course.  Most of them just smiled and said, “you should take lessons.”  To which I thought, why yes that’s a great idea.  But you see this is my first time at Latin Night, which I told you.  Plus, you’re the one who keeps asking me to dance.  I don’t mind looking like a fool so long as you don’t mind a few bruises on your feet.

Maybe now fewer feet will be bruised.  I know three steps and I can turn to the right.  All while moving my arms and hips.

I bet I still look silly when I practice in the living room…

Tagged

Wizard’s First Rule

Okay.  So, I am totally a geek.  Perhaps you know that, but I felt the need to preface this post with a geek qualifier.

Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert are joining forces as producers again to bring Wizard’s First Rule to TV this fall.  We all know Sam Raimi, or should know him, as the director of the Spider Man films.  Those of you know know the Raimi/Tapert duo will recall movies like Evil Dead and Army of Darkness - not to mention other TV fabulousness like Hercules and Xena.  I am delighted to see them back working on the small screen.

Wizard’s First Rule will be on Disney (I know, I know) starting in September 2008.  Currently 22 episodes are being filmed on location in New Zealand.  Yes, folks.  Middle Earth.  The series will be based on Terry Goodkind’s best-selling fantasy book series, “The Sword of Truth.”  You can bet I will be adding at least one of those books (of which there are 11 + 1 novella) to my summer reading list. 

To sum it all up, I am super excited!  The show could be really great.  I’ve missed a weekly Raimi/Tapert fantasy TV drama.  It’s been a seven-year dry spell from their quirky storylines and delightful camp. 

It could be just the reason I was looking for to keep my cable subscription come fall.  Maybe the DVR too…   ;)

Of Lemons and Life…

Things in my little corner of the world have been topsy-turvy as of late.  I was quite happy bumbling around in the course I felt quite confident I had plotted for myself.  Come to find, I was wrong.  One little hiccup and everything changed.

A lemon if you will.

I would be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed initially at the circumstances tossed my way.  Who isn’t thrown off balance when the plans they’ve been counting on suddenly vanish?  Life looks a bit more scary, a tad more unpredictable, and slightly less friendly than it normally does.  But as I was reminded time and time again over the past few week by some wonderful folks, it’s really not that bad.  They were so very, very right.

I’m pleased to say that I have re-learned a few valuable lessons recently.  They include, but are not limited to…

  1. There is nothing in this world finer than friends you can call any time.  Folks who’s opinion you value and people who only want what’s best for you.  (family counts too of course)
  2. You may think you know what’s best/right/intended for you, but you can be wrong.  And not the type of wrong that’s mean or spiteful, but the comforting sort of wrong that seems to say, “No.  No.  This way silly.  It’s better.  I promise.”
  3. Not only do I love to run, but I need to run as well.  It is my therapy.  In those few precious moments each day I am able to recenter myself.  I crave the balance provided by running through the miles.  It’s so much more than exercise.
  4. Waking up each day and knowing you made the best decision for yourself is a great feeling.
  5. Finally, falling back into something you love is amazing.  It’s like coming home.   Back to a place where you know you do good things, and people appreciate you simply because they like having you around.  :)

The moral of this post (as I’m not certain that it’s particularly clear), be true to yourself.  I learned that I could respond in a negative way to unexpected changes, but I choose not to do so.  I would much rather be surprised.  Take a look around and say, “Huh.  I never thought that this is precisely where I would be, but I’m glad I came all the same.”

In summation, make lemonade.  It is summer after all.  :)

Lemon

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