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firsttimebowling1/09

Equal to how I can’t understand your German email when Brandi messages me, nor can I read French. I realize these friends are overseas, but these email notifications seem like a glitch to me – albeit a pretty one to pretend I can speak:

Cave souhaite vous ajouter à ses amis sur Facebook. Nous devons confirmer que vous connaissez Cave pour que vous puissiez être amis sur Facebook.

Pour confirmer cette demande d’ajout à un groupe d’amis, cliquez sur le lien suivant :
http://www.facebook.com/n/?reqs.php

Merci,
L’équipe Facebook

Thank you for sending me forwards about why our friendship is like a flower blooming or a box of wine or whatever. I’ll never send that on to six friends or the person who sent it to me, but it always makes me happy to know my name was added to the list. Likewise, I lurve funny kid stories. Or even, truthfully, the cutesy little animated kittens and puppies. There, I admit it.

I’m really not a total hater, I promise.

However, I think the time is nigh to discuss the logic of a forward where you add your name to a list of some sort that is embedded in the email. Now, as much as it might be interesting to know that Cheryl from Dayton has a birthday on May 4th, you reallyneed to stop and think about this type of format for a fwd. So let’s do a wee bit of math, m’kay?

Let’s pretend Bob opens the “sign this petition to tell the world Obama is a secret muslim antichrist”  fwd, wherin once X number of people have signed the petition, it will be sent to the White House and righteousness will commence. Bob is excited about this kind of justice, and that there are only 437 signatures needed, so he promptly sends it to ten of his friends. Those ten people excitedly add their names to the list and forward to ten new people. Each. So at this point, friends, do you even realizethat with just a few steps there are now at least 100 of those fwds floating around? Can you see why that’s very quickly becoming an exponential joke? It’s stupidly ridiculous.

And even if I weren’t mocking the subject matter – though truthfully, let’s be serious here, how often do you see these types of forwards for something like Darfur fundraising or special needs legislation? – there is a fundamental validity that is negated with this type of OBVIOUSLY ILLOGICAL format. Respect is lost all around when these things are perpetuated.

I’m just telling you this because I care.  Really.

So this is a friendly suggestion to create a petition people go toto sign, like ipetition or other similar sites, because if you really feel strongly enough to rally the particular demographic you’re aiming for, at least make it legitimate.

Thanks so much,

Jen

P.S. Thank you for having slowed down on the apocalyptic poisoned-needles-under-the-gas-pump type of crap. Snopes is everyone’s friend.

So, I have the best ruminations while I’m driving, and always have a tentative outline for the thoughtful and amazing philosophical ideas I’d like to talk about… and then by the time I get to the computer I’m reduced to staring at it dumbly and thinking about lolcats. Sigh.

But, OK, here’s a real topic I’d like opinions on. The kids and I have been hanging out with friends who have Xboxes, and Jack has picked up his mad gaming skills remarkably fast. It’s kind of cool to watch him, because historically physical prowess was not on his short list of accomplishments. Unfortunately I’m unsure what I think about it. I know there are many people who think television et al for children is mentally stunting at best and possibly neurologically damaging at worst. (And to be clear, the whole tv=autism theory makes me snarl, so that’s not what I’m validating.) I concede at a basic level why the utopian ideal can include kids running around and free playing their childhood away, but I also know quite a few wickedly smart people who spent their formative years in front of electronic devices, so I’d also concede the argument that technology doesn’t have to be the Bradbury-ian doomsday harbinger.  

Whatever, point is, I’m hesitant. First because he’s only 5, and I just never thought that would be an issue already, the whole video game fascination. His perserverations can be stunning, and this seems like it could be Pandora’s Box. Secondly, and the actual crux of my concern, is whether to shell out the money to buy one of these systems. I’m not too worried about how much time he spends on it (for now), we’ve hashed out roughly 30 minutes each time he has the opportunity to play it, but those babies cost a couple hundred dollars, and I’m conflicted about buying one just because he assumes he’ll get one, or because it gives me a small measure of pride to know he excels at something so… blerg.. normal. 

Does that make sense?  Basically I don’t want to give in to his confident (and increasingly materialistic) entitlement to everything he wants, but man it makes me happy to see him happy and developmentally ahead at something. That poor monkey struggles with so many things kids his age wouldn’t even realize they do intuitively, and maybe this could be an opportunity for some self confidence. Or, it will be the beginning of a long and obnoxious fight with a time-sucking obsession.

So there you go. I’m  not panicked, just thinking about it and wondering what you all think about gaming, kids, parenting and why Sheryl Crow is popular when she’s always off-key and annoyingly screechy in parts of every song she sings. I had quite the phenomenally shitty day yesterday, and I’m jonesing to have a stimulating conversation.

[And if nothing else, everyone should read this and laugh, because it reminds me of the notebooks my girlfriends and I would write in during junior high classes, giving them back to each other during passing periods – though let me be clear we were FAR more innocent than this group. In fact, if you’re lucky, I’ll post a picture I have on my hard drive of me in 7th grade in one of those black and white photo booths. Big bangs? Braces? Making a goofy face that somehow resembles palsy? So hot. Good times.]

Ready.. go.

I just tried to call my dentist to schedule a cleaning, and the gal cheerfully told me the next appointment is on SEPTEMBER FIRST. We got in to see the developmental pediatrician for Jack’s autism diagnosis faster than that. I saw a cardiologist in high school sooner than that.

I’ve never had to wait that long to get in. Is six and a half months out normal? For a friggin’ dentist? Blerg.

But looking at that stupid site has never failed to cheer me up, and this is another one that has me giggling like a wackadoo, so there ya go.

cat

Sorry, I know that’s super lame. But I hate titles and have the Wicked musical soundtrack in my sleep deprived gourd.

So let’s see.. things are hectic. I’m liking my job pretty well – it can be stupidly crazy at times, but the pace and juggling reminds me of the dinner rush when you’re a server, and consequently time flies when I’m here. Having an office with a door I can shut helps. Did I mention I have AN OFFICE WITH A DOOR AND SOME WINDOWS? Man that’s fun. I feel like such a big girl now.

I took an impromptu trip to Chicago last week to see a band (Antony and the Johnsons, who always seem to be in Europe so this was a coup), and it was amazing. The seats were not the best, and he definitely didn’t push his voice to the registers he does on his albums, but regardless the show is up there as one of the best I’ve seen. He had an incredibly talented band with him (bass guitar, drums, cello and two violinists – one of whom was this kick ass older gal who played the clarinet and sax as well!) and the music was simply beautiful. Unfortunately, I can’t access youtube at work, so you can check out a previously posted  song by him – one of my favorites and the one he encored with, “Hope There’s Someone” –  for now.

We also hit up a bunch of museums and restaurants, most notably Hot Doug’s, for which we stood in line OUTSIDE for OVER AN HOUR in SUBZERO TEMPERATURES. We knew there was a wait for it usually, but hadn’t realized it was recently showcased on Anthony Bourdain’s show, so the line was ridiculous. But sweet jebus the food was worth it. Mmmmmm duck fat fries… But, you know what wasn’t worth it though? Seven Treasures restaurant in Chinatown. Holy shite that was truly the nastiest food I’ve ever attempted to eat. I mean it. The beef was grey, people. And gelatinous. And the broccoli was mushy, and ugh, my stomach’s churning just thinking about it. So.. don’t go there next time you visit, go to the four hundred other places to eat.  But do check out this gallery, it’s pretty cool.

The only other thing that stands out is a suggestion of not getting into a taxi that is not in the very front of the taxi line, because the other drivers in line will go crazy with their horns in protest. It’s comical; they sound like really pissed off geese. But they ain’t kidding around – one poor sap was dumb enough to roll down his window as he passed the other taxis and got an earful.  

So that was it, basically, it was a short trip. I finished Confessions of a Shopaholic (Shhh. I was looking for a silly book to read in my Dramamine-induced drug fog on the plane, but I had no idea it was that friggen bad), and started Wicked and Why Darwin Matters, both of which I’m really enjoying so far. More on the latter later, I’m sure.

And the rest of my colder-than-I-anticipated-considering-I-have-no-coat day consists of trying to jumpstart the brand new – and thoroughly dead – battery in my car. W00t. Pray that it’s not the starter, por favor, I don’t really have the time or moolah for that too.

Hope all is well in your worlds amigos.

I managed to.. hmm… bumrush an old friend, Anthony, into being a ‘jailbird’ for me when I was doing my stint at MDA, and now he needs to raise donations because he’s a nice guy (and happens to work in the call city I worked on). I had thought his company would just make a donation but, uh, I guess not. Zoinks.

So do me a favor friends o’mine and go here, to his donation page, and give him a dollar for me? Por favor? It’s for a good cause, all the money goes to the kids locally, and if he raises the full bail he gets a trip to Vegas, so I’d like to repay the favor for helping me out.

Thanks~

I’d so audit this mutha (thanks Jay for the fwd):

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A class on The Wire

UC Berkeley is offering a class called What’s so great about The Wire?

Discerning critics and avid fans have agreed that the five-season run of Ed Burns and David Simon’s The Wire was “the best TV show ever broadcast in America”–not the most popular but the best. The 60 hours that comprise this episodic series have been aptly been compared to Dickens, Balzac, Dreiser and Greek Tragedy. These comparisons attempt to get at the richly textured complexity of the work, its depth, its bleak tapestry of an American city and its diverse social stratifications. Yet none of these comparisons quite nails what it is that made this the most compelling “show” on TV and better than many of the best movies. This class will explore these comparisons, analyze episodes from the first, third, fourth and fifth seasons and try to discover what was and is so great about The Wire. We will screen as much of the series as we can during our mandatory screening sessions and approach it through the following lenses: the other writing of David Simon, including his journalism, an exemplary Greek Tragedy, Dickens’ Bleak House and/or parts of Balzac’s Human Comedy. We will also consider the formal tradition of episodic television.

They’re skipping season two? Shameful. (via unlikely words)

The shitty cold-calling-scheduled-bathroom-break-having-irritated-caller-screaming temp job is over. Did I mention I was miserable there? Huh.

Next the staffing agency directed me toward a company that brokers freight transport for the DoD. From my long and somewhat whirlwindy interview I can surmise (at this point) that it will be at worst a livable salary, and at best an opportunity to be making some serious commission in the coming year. Sounds vague, I know, but I want to get a feel for it all before I explain further.

The best part is that I get my own freaking office. With a door! And a window! You have no idea how many steps up that is from a week ago when I was sitting roughly 3 inches from a gal whose chair collapsed in the middle of a phone call. Support your local (or national) charities, folks. Good times.

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Anyway, cross your fingers for me; this could be the break I need to use my yapping skills as a living.

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