Wednesday, May 31, 2006

horse head in your bed!

i watched the godfather part one last night. wow, is that movie long. and because i've seen so many spoofs, sometimes not even knowing that they were spoofs, i found myself laughing several times, thinking, "oh NOW i get it."

i couldn't really sleep last night, not because i was freaked out or anything, but just wondering.... how DID they get the horse head in the bed without waking that guy up? i mean, there was a lot of blood, but none got on the floor or the covers. how exactly do you sneak into a wealthy man's house at night with a severed horse head and get it all the way up to his room and under his covers without disturbing anyone? there are so many senarios i went through in my head, but they just don't give you any clues...

i also picked up on some interesting irony.

the story is mostly about michael... oh, what the heck, let's call him mike... and how he had to leave his nice happy girlfriend and go and change himself all around into some freakish bad guy. then he got married to some brunette that never smiled.... HMMMMM... and she got 'sploded in a car. well, hopefully that won't happen, but who knows? then he went back to his formerly happy girlfriend and married her anyway, and they had a really cute kid but she still wasn't happy because mike was a totally different person than he was when they were dating before. strange how a few years can do that.

but seriously, i was mostly thinking about the horse head. how do you even cut a horse's head off? with a knife? with a saw? do you kill it first?

Monday, May 29, 2006

the dj blues

this weekend has been crazy, mostly because my sister graduated on friday. that means my cousins were in town from kentucky, which was loads of fun, but also that there were a bunch of recently-freed eighteen-year-olds running around town, simultaneously ecstatic to be done with school and desperate to cram in as much "hanging out" as possible before they all went their separate ways.

...which is very funny, because most of them (75%, to be exact) are staying in town and going to NMSU, but who am i to break up a "i'll never see you again" nostalgia fest?

so on friday night, my sis had a huge party at our house with a ton of kids. nick and i cleaned the yard and set up lights all day, and the place looked really nice when we were done. i was the dj. i lugged my stereo all the way from socorro, and was very pleased that it did just fine. my music library, however, did not.

okay, being a dj sucks. there's always something... there's always someone... always.

i don't have the most extensive music library in the world, far from it, but i think i have acceptable dance/party music. it's not like the only music i play is indie rock or girl-power pop or metal or something... i have quite a variety. i'm even music-conscious enough to realize that while i absolutely adore the beatles and their solo careers, not everyone else does, and they don't want to listen to it all night. i was pretty proud that i limited myself to two beatles songs, one george song, and no paul songs at all. and "i saw her standing there" and " i'm happy just to dance with you" are perfectly acceptable dance songs. i also have plenty of swing, funk, disco, jazz, some techno, hip-hop, and enough salsa and tango and polka for a small dance like that (shut up okay, polka is fun. it's fun! and it's easy to dance to, so leave me alone).

what i don't have? country. i mean, come on. i knew i was in trouble, since las cruces in general and the christian school in particular usually only now how to two-step, so i got about twelve country tracks from al and figured i was okay. little did i know that the rich snobby cowboys and cowgirls would refuse to dance to anything but twangy, corny, two-stepping drivel. and since the rich snobby beautiful kids that looked like extras on the OC were the majority, majority rules.

after about fifteen requests (or demands) for more country, al and i pulled a fast one on the party and played a few tracks from his cd while i imported more country music and blindly trusted that it would be dance-worthy. luckily (thank GOD for al), it was. so i set up itunes to play two country songs and then one normal song, and so on. no good. the floor would be packed on the country songs, and would empty.... seriously on normal songs, even ones that i thought would really be a hit, like zoot suit riot and YMCA and brick house.... BRICK HOUSE! good grief. the michael jackson trick that worked at the last party i djed totally didn't fly friday night. stupid little snobs. one girl even announced to me that she was changing the music and headed toward my computer. i almost took her head off.

and even when the snobs were happy, the other people weren't. more than one person came up to me and begged me to shut off the twang. and then al's little sister and her friend... poor things... they really wanted me to play like usher or something that i just didn't have, and they were so nice about it but i just kept turning them away, and they tried doing their hip hop moves to the two-step crap that i was forced to play, and i felt so bad for them.

i was so glad when my dad told me that it was late and to wrap it up, and even more relieved when the little brats left and there was no more music playing. tracy assured me that it was a good dance, but i swear there was someone scowling no matter what was playing. it was so stressful.

i would really like to swear off djing and take a vow never to do it again, but i'm not ready to give up yet. i don't know why this is-- i've had nothing but bad experiences. i want to give it at least one more try. i just need to get some usher.

Friday, May 19, 2006

tim and me

josh is moving to seattle, so this week is sort of like us catching up on all the stuff we were supposed to do in the last four years that we never did. example: every bloody time i go to his house to watch a movie i suggest sleepy hollow, but there's always some reason to pick something else. it's to bright outside. one of us is too tired. my little brother was even there once and we didn't want to freak him out. after about two years of disappointment, i finally saw it last night for the first time.

...and the last time. tim burton is a psycho freak.

how many times in one movie can you have blood splash into a character's face? i mean, there was a lot, a lot of blood. and it was gross. he even tries to fool you by making everything that's NOT blood sort of look like blood, so it still freaks you out. and i think red is the only color in the movie, because he purposely washed everything else out, which is a cool effect until there's blood in somebody's face, at which point it's just gross. weirdo. there's even one part where this woman sort of pops out of a coffin along with a flood of blood, which sort of reminded me of the shining, but... eww...

my friends were surprised that i reacted thus. they told me, "well, of course tim burton is a freak. just look at the corpse bride." i do not understand this. i love the corpse bride, it was dark and fun and sweet and romantic, and it is one of my favorite movies. in fact, it was the corpse bride that was in my head when the headless horseman in sleepy hollow was about to kill some cute little boy, and i thought, "johnny depp will save him. tim burton, maker of the corpse bride, would not let a little kid die."

i was wrong.

tim, i think we lost something. i used to like you a lot, especially since you seem partial to mr. depp and mr. lee and mr. walken, and of course your lovely fiancee, and i like being friends by association.

but you're scary, and not in a fun way. in a disturbing way.

Monday, May 15, 2006

i'm a guy

i'm trying to get my mind off the fact that jon, josh and i just hung out together for probably the last time ever. jon's going home tomorrow, and josh is moving to seattle in a few weeks. it's really frustrating that guys don't talk about these things, or lest i be stereotypical, these guys don't talk about these things. and for some reason, maybe because i truly am "one of the guys," i can't bring it up either. so there were no proper good-byes, or i'll miss yous, or anything, and josh even said, "okay, see you guys later" even though we all know he won't. i'm trying to tell myself that tonight wasn't the last time, and maybe those two are doing the same thing, but it's not working for me.

i'm just going to read my book, which is the latest installment of orsen scott card's bean series, shadow of the giant. favorite author, favorite series... that should do the trick.

oh my gosh, being a guy is lame. :(

Sunday, May 14, 2006

simple pleasures

i think i'm becoming something of an impulse shopper. i used to be entirely over-responsible about my finances, even going as far as to "sleep on" just about every purchase i made (except, of course, christmas gifts, but that's a whole different level of my complex psyche). i think it all started when wal mart figured out that rock band shirts and jackets would sell, and that beatlemaniacs like me would have to buy every single piece as soon as they saw it. this taught me that buying things is fun and sort of a stress relief.

anyway, after our last finals on wednesday, carmen and i decided to go shopping. unfortunately, we're in socorro, so that meant that wal mart was really the only place we could splurge. but wal mart has such fun stuff! for example....

three dollar hula hoops. they are pretty and have the little beads inside that rattle and it's fun to try and keep it going, so i bought one. between that and our huge huge beanbag, the electric blue spikey exercise ball, and the foosball table, our living room is starting to resemble a daycare center for really large kids.

this feeling was solidified later that night, when josh, jon, and scott came over and tried to do tricks. everyone else would chant, "jump through the hoop, jump through the hoop!" while someone would hold it up and another person would dive through it and hit the bean bag. we tried flips and running at it feet-first and jumping backwards, or tossing the hoop while someone else jumps through it, or spinning the hoop and trying to dive through without touching it.... so much fun.

last night we continued, and this time we tried to throw the ball through the hoop while it was spinning, or tried to spin the hoop around one leg while jumping over it with the other, and of course we kept jumping through it whenever we could. it turns out that it's really hard to jump through when it's rolling across the carpet. none of us could do it without knocking the hoop over, and we tried for a long time.

but the best moment with the hoop? okay.

so josh had had a few beers. he told me to hold the hoop for him. a little higher. a little higher. "okay," he says, "i'm going to do like a feet-first-with-a-spin." a what? "a feet-first-with-a-spin!" okay josh.

so josh ran and jumped and sort of flew at me with his feet, which was terrifying, and then he tried to twist, totally missed the beanbag and faceplanted the carpet.

and carmen got it all on video.

i was concerned, i really was, but i was laughing so hard that i couldn't speak. neither could jon or scott. carmen finally asked him if he was okay about the time that the rest of us finally caught our breath and laughed out loud.

it turns out that josh actually hurt his wrist and knee pretty badly, but he laughed at himself as much as we laughed at him. the video is great, i'll try and post it. he's hoping to earn mild internet fame for that little trick, but i'm not sure. we'll see how it goes.

you know how toddlers sometimes ditch the expensive toy and play with the paper it was wrapped in? or how little kids spend weeks playing in a box? it seems that this pattern is not age-specific, because i have now witnessed five early-twenties college students spending several hours at my house playing with a big plastic hoop. that's the best three dollars i have ever spent.

Friday, May 12, 2006

the infamousaminus

i was really hoping that dr. o would prove me wrong about his grading scheme, but i and the majority of the students in senior design were right about him. on tuesday at our last meeting, leroy said, "it's like a big dartboard with a really small bullseye and a really huge 'A-'." and that about sums it up.

'A-' yet again. it just doesn't matter how much work you put into a project, how many sleepless nights you spend stressing about it. and on the other hand, it also doesn't matter how long you put it off until the last minute or what kind of shoddy job you throw together before you turn it in. it seems that dr. o makes up his mind what grade your team will get in the first few weeks of class, and then, no matter what, that's what you get. our team has been getting 'A-'s for the last two semesters, no matter what. it's absurd.

he gave us our scores for our presentations on tuesday. apparently my team killed. the students, faculty, and ABET crew all scored us much higher than the next team. we were first place by a good margin, which really surprised me because to be honest i thought there was a lot of room for improvement. but was it enough to pull us up to an 'A'? no. oh dear no.

and it wasn't the paper, okay, because that thing rocked. i poured my soul into it for weeks, and it deserved an 'A', i don't care what anybody says.

at least now i don't feel bad about taking ten minutes on the course evaluation to write down exactly what i think about dr. o's grading. at the time i felt pretty guilty because he's very nice man and quite like mr. rogers, really, but now i feel justified. i was right.

i had actually dared to hope for a 4.0 this semester, but so much for that. i got hit by the infamousaminus. boo on teachers.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

weekend update

somehow that finite element analysis final wasn't so bad! i guess the trip to ghosh's office asking him so many hard questions worked. i almost wish i had studied some more, because a lot of those problems were really easy... but! maybe i'll still get an A.

i ended up finishing four of my five papers yesterday. it took a long, long time, and i think the quality of writing dropped exponentially with every one. i've been spending so much time down in the ME lab (our "dungeon," as we like to say, but really it has some very nice windows) that i think i might actually miss it next semester. it's times like these that i say to myself, "no! no, you're GLAD that school is over! remember all the bad times?" and then yes, i do remember the bad times, and i snap out of it. snapped.

so that concludes the scholastic portion of my weekend. now we'll move on to hockey. ah, hockey.

the games this last weekend were the first playoff games for this season. for some bizarre reason, my team played my brother's team, even though i think we're tied for last place. nick had ray and mark on his team, and ryan as his goalie. hugo and i actually had gabe show up to goaltend for us, which i think has happened only one other time this season, but we were very glad to have him.

playoff games are different from regular games because of three things:
1.) if you lose, you're out.
2.) no stats are kept.
3.) you can't pick up any players.

that # 3 was the killer for us. dave and matt didn't show, so hugo and i were the only skaters for our team. we played (almost) the entire game shorthanded, 2 on 3. playing the entire game is rough by itself, but playing shorthanded is just exhausting. and hard. you have only one person to pass to, so if they're attacking you and covering him, you're in trouble and you either have to lose the ball or dump it or bust a mad move. i'm not much for mad moves, i'm a defender, but luckily, hugo is all about the mad moves.

would you believe that i scored the first goal of the game? somehow we got a 2-on-1 rush and hugo gave me a great pass and we scored! yay!

would you believe that hugo scored the second goal of the game?

no, we didn't keep our two-goal lead, but it did take them more than half of the first period to finally overtake us. i think it's pretty impressive that we kept up such good pressure the whole game and that we only lost by three. i'm proud of us. we did good. of course, it would have been extremely embarrassing for the other team if we had won, especially since they always had an open man and more than a few times hugo and i both attacked, leaving no one on defense.

i tried to rush back to help gabe out whenever we both attacked and lost possession, and that was the worst. i sprinted as hard as i could back down the court and usually just missed the play. of course when i stopped the exhaustion would catch up to me and oh my goodness. it was hard. at one point, after i rushed back and missed the play, i stood next to gabe catching my breath and told him i wasn't going to do that anymore, that he was on his own. he said okay, but i couldn't do it. i kept rushing back, even though it felt like it was going to kill me, even though it was much better game stategy to pace myself. i guess the defender/coach in me will never die. i just can't leave the goalie by himself. i just can't skate without hearing "HUSTLE!" in my head.

hugo got a penalty in the first half, so i had to play by myself while he took a rest (the system's messed up). i actually held them off (with lots of help from gabe) for a minute and a half before they scored. if you can't tell, i'm pretty proud of that. 3-on-1 is hardcore. they finally beat me because, well... my brother is just so much bigger than i am.

of course, mark got a penalty in the second half, but we scored right away. so we had one even-strength goal, four shorthanded goals, and lost by three. that's not bad at all. :)

Monday, May 08, 2006

i can see the finish line

it's pretty bad when you can't tell if your hands are shaking or not.

well, i've done it again. skipped church on sunday, spent all day in my pajamas working on my fluids paper, ate dinner, and spent all night- yes, all night- working on the first half of my brit lit paper. i have to write about four pages each on two problems, and i finished one. and it rocks. ah, the complexities of good and evil. now for one on the role of women. i'm not sure i have that fight still in me. i'm not sure i can keep beating that poor horse.

anyway, i finished the first paper at five, packed my stuff, drank some really gross coffee (i'm not sure if it was the caffine or the horrible taste that kept me awake), and drove back to socorro. i spent about an hour printing and organizing my 36-page fluids paper (okay, ten pages were fan specs, but still, 26 is a lot), slipped it under lyon's door at nine with several of my classmates, and then joined up with josh, kat, and heather to argue with ghosh for an hour about the finite final tomorrow at nine that everyone is going to fail. and believe me, if kat fails, it's bad. very bad.

so, figure on a finite final failure. freak out!

sorry. did i mention i haven't slept?

so here's what i've got left:

brit lit paper due at four
senior design paper (think like 50 pages) due tomorrow at nine
finite paper (only about 12) due tomorrow at nine
finite final (no hope) tomorrow at nine
transportation final (cake) wednesday at nine
vibrations paper (about 10, and mostly done) wednesday at one
vibrations final (i'm pass-failing, so all i need is a C) wednesday at one

and "that's it." i'll be surprised if i get any sleep before tomorrow at about noon. oh, and hockey was awesome this weekend. i'll tell you about it later. if i can still think later.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

evening, ladies and germs...

senior design presentations are an injustice against students, particularly but not limited to mechanical engineering students at my school. this is ridiculous. nothing should be such a big deal, least of all a two-credit hour class that most people don't care about anyway because they're graduating in a week and already have jobs. the system's messed up.

today we had our final presentations, and had to sum up all the work we've done for the past two semesters into a 15 minute slide show. dr. o made it very clear that any group that went over fifteen minutes would be severely penalized. since the department is trying to trick us into thinking that these projects are the biggest deal, ever, all of our classes today were canceled. they also chose this day to hold the second bi-semesterly ABET accreditation advisory board meeting, and told us over and over that all the board members would be attending and evaluating our presentations. of course, these men have nothing to do with the department's actual accreditation, but they make us think that the unstable future of mechanical engineering depends on us impressing the board. no pressure, huh?

then of course, everyone is threatened to look professional or else, so we all have to dress like we're going to a wedding (or a funeral, in the case of jon's group. all six of them were dressed like paulbearers). i suppose in a few cases looking nice can make a person feel empowered, but mostly it just makes everyone more nervous. as if all that wasn't enough, instead of having the presentations in a classroom, we had them at the big stage... you know, where we have our plays and concerts and freshmen orientation. this place is a freakin opera house. which means we have stage lights and microphones and remote-controlled slide changers and all that shtuff. why? because they're trying to freak us out.

so this morning, when we didn't have class, my group got together to do a final run-through and make sure everything was organized. we had a lot of time to do this. and a lot of time to get nervous. the more we gave each other suggestions and tweaked the slides and rehearsed, the more nervous we became. i'm not one of those people that fears public speaking, but by eleven o'clock i was freakin out. so just imagine how bad it must have been for, say, casey, who gets really stressed every time we present, even to a small crowd.

and that's a shame, by the way. casey is incredibly smart and did the finite analysis of our design single-handedly, and he did it well. but of course, when he presents he's so nervous that he's not very eloquent and since he speaks rather slowly and is a big guy i'm afraid he comes off as a "dumb jock," which is entirely unfair. poor guy.

but the time came, and we gathered up to face our doom.

being dressed up around my class is tiresome even if i don't have to stand on a stage and sound intelligent. there are three, count em, three other girls in the department right now, and about fifty guys. not joking. being dressed up makes the guys realize, "bloody hell, you're a girl!" and then they act really strange and sort of swarm. it's not enjoyable. on top of that is the wait. being dressed up isn't that bad, but sitting for four hours while you're dressed up gets old.

my shoes were killer though. horribly uncomfortable, but totally hot. they're like mary poppins shoes... but hot.

we finally presented. leroy couldn't get the remote to work, but was okay other than that. travis wasn't as good as he usually is, but he did fine, as did derek. casey was really smooth. i was proud of him. i think i said "actually" about twelve and a half times (doh!), but didn't stumble around or anything. christian was by far the worst due to some technical difficulties, but still wasn't all that bad.

i'm so glad that's over with. our department is screwed up though. they wait until we're seniors to do this to us so it's too late for us to change our minds and go to materials or civil. and they're holding our grades hostage to make us jump through all these ridiculous hoops to make the department look good. what jerks.

i wish i was graduating.