About Me

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Richmond, Virginia, United States
Will be in school forever. Done trying to be a Wendy.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Jefferson Davis and His Generals: The Failure to Write an "A" Paper The Night Before

Steven Woodworth:
"Pemberton's first inkling that all was not as he had supposed came on April 16, 1863. Only the day before he had been confident that Grant was reinforcing Rosecrans, but now intelligence reports were conflicting. Pemberton nervously wired Johnston that he could not send as many troops as he had planned. That night Pemberton received another indication that Grant was up to something. The officers of the Vicksburg garrison were celebrating their apparent victory over Grant by attending a festive ball with the citizens of the town. As couples waltzed around the floor to cheerful tunes, the music was suddenly drowned out by the roar of the big guns along the waterfront. The ball changed into pandemonium as muzzle flashes lit the sky outside the windows and the acrid smell of powder smoke seeped into the ballroom. Officers dashed off to join their units. Whatever it was, it was over quickly. The Vicksburg guns fell silent. A few minutes later the stillness of the night was again broken, this time by a distant rumbling and flashes on the southern horizon."

I made it through this dense book about an hour ago, presently embarking on a five-page paper about the failures of Davis and his generals in the western theater. The major themes I am focusing on are hesitancy, inflexibility, loyalty, and incompetency. My mind is on other things like orange juice, cuddling, winter break, my RCA project, Guatemala in the spring, home renovations, and buying a Christmas tree. (And from where?)

P.S. Trying to make it up to the DC tree this year, as I won't be going home for Christmas. Let's go, let's go!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

i'll have a butterscotch sundae, i guess.

Earlier this evening I was produce shopping alongside Douglas Wilder at Kroger. (!) He was the first African American to be elected governor in the U.S. and the second to serve. Most recently mayor of Richmond. I made green curry for dinner, I wonder what he was preparing...or if it was just an early Thanksgiving "connecting with the people" effort.

Monday, November 23, 2009

do it for the laffs

1. Two As on tests.

2. Classic Titles Made Sarcastic by the Use of Quotation Marks

3. Яolcats
Because I can't stand looking at my own any longer.

The porno music actually detracts from this video. Believe it!

5. There is a tiny dog wearing a buffalo plaid hoodie in the apartment. I love everything about this place besides the cold floors.

6. "I brought out my laptop to study, but wound up watching Lady Gaga videos all afternoon."

Sunday, November 22, 2009

let's never come here again, because it never will be as fun

After a wonderful breakfast of nachos (teese, chorizo, asparagus, zucchini, tofu scramble, pico de gallo, etc yum etc) and coffee with one of my favorite people, I came home to push towels into the washing machine and get cozy on the couch. With all the deadlines coming up, I should be reading or doing something constructive, but yea. Enough.

Monday, November 16, 2009

tonight the coastline is quiet

Edit. Here are some things I'm actually excited about:

Watching Roman Holiday
$1 taco night with the girls
Getting straight A's this semester
Having a cat who is so in love with me (and Fancy Feast)
Having amazing parents (seriously the most patient people in the universe)
Having a bedroom I adore
Going to Florida for five days in December- spending my time sleeping by the pool, reading books for pleasure, having the t.v. room to myself like old times. I was trying to describe her t.v. room to Laura tonight. It's small with cream carpet, a small sofa. Windows to the outside- you can see her orange trees cast shadows on the wall in the dark- the neighbor's security light. The glass doors open to the illuminated pool on the screened-in lanai. The lanai features a swimming pool, a hot tub, a cushy lounge chair, and assorted sailor paraphernalia. Basically it is the home I wish to have someday. The air smells different down there, like an early September Richmond morning. I'll awake to coffee and eat Crispix cereal and read the newspaper outside. I will be visiting Thomas Edison's house and taking myself to the beach. Every time I visit down there it is an exercise in my own solitude. Last time both of my eardrums ruptured on the plane- I was in pain for five days, couldn't hear a thing, but managed to take myself everywhere in a sixty mile radius...in a gold convertible. There is a movie theater across the street.

Discovering my great-great grandfather fought in the Civil War for Tennessee. Wanting to learn more about that. I am preparing to interview my grandmother and my great aunts over Christmas to find out more about my dad's side of the family. One of my old timey distant relatives killed another by bashing him with a shovel...maybe that is a good indicator of the type of life my blood will bring. I'm not sure.

It pains me to know so little about my dad's side of the family. My grandmother was one of nine children brought up in Bristol, TN. When she was a teenager, she left home to move to Connecticut to live near one of her sisters and take a job. She fell in love with my grandfather and on her eighteenth birthday gave birth to my father. My grandparents settled in Rockville, MD after the war, lived in Ocean City, MD and managed a condo complex (Gullway) for a number of years, and eventually wound up in Cape Coral, Florida. My grandfather died within a year of their move, shortly after their visit during the birth of my premature brother. I remember my grandfather as a John Wayne type. Tall and quiet, always tan. He wore man jumpsuits convincingly, had sailor tattoos, and was always smoking.

Their life in Ocean City and the one they dreamed of in Cape Coral is the one I am trying to continue. After my grandfather's death, my grandmother dated a real schmuck, Richard. He was boozy and schmoozy, but fortunately talked her into buying a boat. We drove that boat all over the Gulf Coast when I was a child, going to lunch and taking advantage of the many ports the surrounding areas offered. I imagine now that he drank rum and cokes, or perhaps my grandfather did...even though he seemed like a whiskey man, through and through. I want to connect everything I do back to the lives of my two sets of grandparents, though I realize that must be impossible.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

friendship has its perks

"Fiery Sweet Potatoes from the NY Times
Time: About 2 hours

5 pounds sweet potatoes
1 cup coconut milk
1 tablespoon Thai red curry paste
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon salt.
1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Bake potatoes on a baking sheet until very soft, about 1 hour. When cool enough to handle, peel and mash.

2. In a small saucepan, heat coconut milk with curry paste over low heat. Mix coconut milk mixture, half the sugar, half the butter, and salt into potatoes. Keep warm until ready to serve, or cover and refrigerate up to two days.

3. At least 30 minutes before serving, heat oven to 425 degrees. Put potatoes in a baking dish, cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover potatoes, dot with remaining butter and sugar and broil until brown and crusty on top, checking often to prevent scorching.

Yield: 10 to 12 servings."

With Thanksgiving fast approaching, many new recipes will experience a trial run in my kitchen. This holiday season I will attempt to outdo Potpieapalooza 2008. (T-shirts still available!)

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Hurricane Ida has led to a coastal storm system pummeling the Mid-Atlantic region. Virginia Governor Tim Kaine declared a State of Emergency on Tuesday. In Richmond, "fashion" is being chucked out the window, as many favor bundling up like the homeless. Broken umbrellas litter the streets. By Wednesday, most will become leading materials for AFO sculpture projects. Isn't it fun taking an object and making it something radically different?!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

i'm gonna give you a little somethin' you can't take off

Ran into my professor tonight at Crossroads. He suggests I should ditch the Classroom Management and promises me that if I finish my undergrad this semester, he'll be able to get me out and into a classroom by next Spring. Advising over a cup of coffee- so refreshing! Winter 2010 has Praxis 1&2 written all over it.

Hoping Geography of North America will work out. The Geography department is dragging its feet. DO NOT want to be stuck taking an intersession class.

P.S. ...

P.P.S. I just want to fall asleep by 1AM.

Listening to: The Bats, Thousands of Tiny Luminous Spheres

Monday, November 9, 2009

been trying to tell the difference between my road and my street

Insincere compliments and crying outdoor cats are two of my least favorite things. Ignoring them proves to be the easiest way to deal with both, but it's certainly not the most progressive approach.

Ten Things I Desire (at 2am):

1. Synthetic down comforter (Ikea)
2. Bedside lamp (Ikea)
3. Four new shelves
4. Vegan Brunch and a waffle iron
Doesn't talk too much? (Or maybe just all the season three episodes)
Impressive library (You probably can't tell, but each book contains my hand-placed sticky notes outlining superordinate ideas.)
Amtrak sleeper car. It's not about the destination. The books lying on the bench are used copies of Sin in Second City and Collected Stories by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Playmobil Shark Diver. Located on my hold shelf at work

A Mike Jones showing of "It Happened One Night".

Up late drinking red wine, looking over Apartment Therapy. Three friends will receive spider plants this week. Plants are the new friendship bracelets.

Listening to: Bowerbirds, Upper Air

Friday, November 6, 2009

i had a dream last night

Richmond was a lot more impressive. Summertime, powdered-sugar sky, people walking around everywhere. A seaside town. We decided it would be a better-than-OK idea to ride our bikes down to the river, and then into the river. Richmond was full of hills and I was the first out of an assortment of English and French male visitors, touring drummers, and distant relatives to descend toward the river. Fences were painted red, white AND blue as I freewheeled down the dividing lines, around corners, missing cars and screaming at the top of my lungs, past Kat's house to the steepest hill yet. "I can't possibly survive this," I thought as I scraped my Converse along the concrete..."I can't possibly stop like this" the sky opened up to say, a booming voice not unlike the foggy patriarch of childhood religion. "I? You?..Me? Who's up there?"

"'EY 'MILY, 'AAIT 'PPPP" Looking over my shoulder at the brown haired boy, I couldn't tell if he was English or French and if it was the wind or his ELL status that swallowed his words. He was wearing a white t-shirt and jeans and I knew I'd never see him again. I couldn't wait to hit the river on my bicycle, flying high above dented cans, rotten food, patchy shrubbery- hitting the murky green water and holding onto my navy blue bicycle, lifting it victoriously over my head as my "friends" flew above, faces reflecting pure joy, like when consuming the last funnel cake of the season.

We wound up at an alley party. Two guys in the parking lot were working on a robotic sculpture. They billed themselves as Japanese on an art tour, but they must have been living in the Fan for at least seven years. Everyone had already seen their work, partied with them, gotten bored of their efforts, because they didn't move to New York. RVA pretended it was still interesting. I started throwing parts of their robots away and got sucked into a future party nextdoor. I knew it was a future party because there were vehicles from the future outside.

In the future, no one danced. In the future, disco balls are worth buying. In the future, girls wore gold lipstick and kiss each other under folding tables and in dusty attics filled with our new technologies. In the future, you don't have to worry about past and present tense because no one knows how to write properly. No college graduates understand grammar. And certainly no one reads your blog. I flirted a little with a close talker under a folding table and woke up.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Some truths.

NPR Review and Except from Foer's "Eating Animals". Check it!

Also, this is embarrassing but I always thought Cross Country Cat by Mary Calhoun was non-fiction. It was one of my favorites in elementary school, back when I used to tell classmates that my cat, Princess, loved to scuba and that with the right combination of hot water and salt, I would turn into a mermaid in the bathtub. I never believed in those fictions, but...wow, how did I really think a cat would ski? I've told people over the years of this phenomenon. Fuck. I should have been on this episode of This American Life.

Listening to: The Mountain Goats, We Shall All Be Healed

Spring 2010

TEDU 600 Classroom Management
TEDU 681 Investigations and Trends in Teaching History
POLI 341 Issues in World Politics
HIST 318 History of Germany
GEOG 334 Geography of North America (The selection is currently closed. Preregistration...that's great right?)

Listening to: Sun Kil Moon, Tiny Cities