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I Am my Own Enigma

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I am sick Jun. 28th, 2010 @ 11:40 pm
and boy let me tell you hiking feverish towards a West Virginia swimming hole was an experience. With any luck Ritzke's place will have a vacancy soon, and that'll take some of the pressure off me: found a job but didn't know til too late that I'd be in Annapolis again next year.

Wish I felt better because I could use the money and besides I feel bad missing work so early in my career there, but given how much of the job revolves around us all touching the same things it's probably good that I make sure I'm pretty well better by the time I go back.
Current Location: Annapolis

Yo Storytellers people, Jun. 23rd, 2010 @ 09:33 pm
Ira Glass on how storytellers use wrongness.

"I feel like this is a really weird example to bring up, but he interviews me and Errol Morris about interviewing. It's a really funny chapter because I give all of these totally Pollyanna answers—I mean, things I really believe, but I'm like [here he goes into an earnest falsetto, like a very sincere Chipmunk] 'I just think that people open up because they sense that somebody's really interested. It's just a natural human thing.' And Errol is like 'I DOUBT WHETHER WE KNOW OURSELVES, AND THE ACT OF BEING INTERVIEWED IS AN ACT OF ASSERTING A SELF WHICH WE HOPE IS TRUE.' Seriously, every answer is like this. I'm like, 'I just think it's really swell being interviewed!' And he's like "THERE IS NO SELF.'"

Work is going great - longer post about that in a day or two, or maybe later tonight. Going great, but still consists of nine hours indoors, so when I got home today I took a ten mile bike ride, and feel great. Should've gone further, but I forgot to bring a water bottle.
Current Location: Annapolis
Feeling...: happyhappy
Auditory Emanations:: Pixies - Manta Ray

Thanks, life. Jun. 15th, 2010 @ 05:34 pm
No sarcasm. Seriously. I start at OpenPath on Thursday. Need to pick up further proof of my U.S. residency, but once that is done... I'm employed.
Current Location: Annapolis
Feeling...: relievedrelieved
Auditory Emanations:: thadrewlife - Wings Flyer

Quick news - Jun. 12th, 2010 @ 01:37 pm
- missing Kristin like hell;

- pretty sure I saw a black widow last night by the driveway;

- building a phonograph player for 45's;

- probably heading to Annapolis tomorrow;

- Job interview on Monday at 2:30;

- listening to this version of "Color In Your Cheeks" by The Mountain Goats on pretty much constant repeat for the last day or so.
Current Location: Fairfax
Feeling...: giddygiddy
Auditory Emanations:: The Mountain Goats - Color In Your Cheeks

Italy Trip. Jun. 11th, 2010 @ 12:14 pm
No pictures yet, because I need to go through and resize/fix color/choose which ones to post/etc, but if I don't post at least a few impressions soon they will all leak out of my ears and into my pillow, which I may not have around whenever I get around to the picture stuff. So here goes.

Rome

City Impressions

Rome was... big. Alternately a modern city and an ancient one, seven hills and fourteen obelisks and many real-life movie sets. People there drive small cars or ride big scooters, or bike (mostly mountain bikes.) Subway system was about halfway between DC and NYC in terms of city-vs-commutertrain, but dirty as fuck on some of the lines. Generally though the city was clean.

Art and Architecture

The Vatican was impressive. The Sistine Chapel was impressive, but I was more wowed by St. Peter's Basilica: I've never liked Baroque much, but seeing all the gold and marble and every-little-thing-carved in a space that was SO BIG made it all make sense, made it even beautiful.

I think that people liked "busy" art more when there was no television: you could stare at a ten-by-ten mosaic for an hour and still be finding new things.

St. Paul's Basilica, on the other hand, was also big but somewhat more empty. And we got to hear monks singing Vespers. I wish we could've stayed for more, but the tour guide started moving us on.

The Pantheon is large. I would have liked it better if we had some idea of what it had looked like before it was Christianized... not much of a pan-theon anymore, I'm afraid. But still a damned impressive feat of engineering.

Florence

City Impressions

Much more modern hotel. Tour guide says that the train station has gypsies (, and thus we should be careful of our purses). Food expensive, wine good. Fewer cars than Rome, more bikes. About fifty-fifty mountain bikes and old singlespeed cruisers (didn't see a single internal-gear, though I saw rod-actuated brakes for the first time, which was cool). No subway, buses okay.

Art and Architecture

Probably the single most affecting thing I saw on the whole ten-day trip was Michaelangelo's David. It was the first time I've been moved to tears by a statue. Sure, I've seen reproductions, and pictures, but they are not the same - the flaws in the marble are not present in the reproductions, and the photos never get his face straight-on... and it's his face that really does it to me. Sure, he's got a nice body, sure, it's a triumph of anatomy, blah blah blah - his face, though - he is afraid, faithful, strong, courageous, terrified, all this beautiful balance that is mirrored by his stance. Wow.

Other than that, it was cool to see bunches of paintings I'm familiar with in the Uffizi, Brunelleschi's Dome was sweet (and really, really big - I was told that the inside surface of the dome is the largest painting in the world, and I'd believe it.) The buildings here were pretty neat, though less varied than in Rome. I really like the city's seal (a winged lion with a paw resting on an open book.) There was a neat exhibit on the history of musical instruments in the Academy Museum.

Bonus: Shopping

I bought a really great leather jacket in Florence, after having my arm set on fire twice by two different very insistent salesmen. I've been looking for a leather jacket that fits me well for quite a while, so this was pretty cool. Seriously the most pushy salesmen I've ever seen, though (it was sort of cool talking a dude down from 350 Euros to 140, and I probably could've gotten him to go lower.)

Venice

City Impressions

Really full. It was like Disney World, except self-parodying. Cramped. Some good food if you know where to look, for good prices if you avoid St. Mark's Square and the Rialto Bridge area. No bicycles, no scooters, no cars - they are all banned. Water taxis are cool but NOISY AS FUCK (messed up transmission, from the sound of it) and really expensive. Not my favorite city.

Art and Architecture

Architecture was fascinating here, damn shame it'll be underwater in a hundred years. Lots of teeny little alleyways intersected with canals. The best-sounding bell tower I have ever heard. Not a huge fan of the art in the Doge's Palace. Wish I could've seen more modern art while here.

Bonus: Verona

Touristy, but less bad than Venice. Cars bikes buses. Didn't get to see the Museum of Radio History, damn shame. Juliet's House very much a tourist trap. I rubbed her right boob for luck.

Pictures to come when I get around to it.
Current Location: Fairfax
Auditory Emanations:: The Mountain Goats - Sax Rohmer #1
Other entries
» (No Subject)
Got back last night from Italy. Soon there will be stories and pictures. But for now, I present to you a simple way to learn Go, online, with examples, easy to understand, and fun interactive things:

http://playgo.to/iwtg/en/
» (No Subject)
In Italy. Internet is expensive.

It's pretty awesome, though. There will be pictures later.
» Hi Eric,
It was a pleasure meeting with you. You are one of the three candidates that we have narrowed it down to. We would like you to come in for a second interview but we will not be able to set that up till until you return from you vacation. We hope this will not be a problem for you. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

Employment, here I come!
» Well would you look at that,
I graduated.

Huh.

Looted the dorms last night, too.
» So I fixed a bicycle
Pulled a 1985ish Murray Adagio out of the trash on bulk trash night.

Stripped down, it looked like this:



I repainted it, cleaned everything, replaced the shitty bar foam with real bar tape, redid (and lubed) all the cables... and now it looks like this:



I win.

Ms. Bonacini has dibs on it if she likes it/finds it to be a good size/etc; if she doesn't want it, $75 gets it.
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