azurite: (fiction - have written)
So rather than wail about all the Post-Its I have lying around with things to do, my near-empty Listography book, and the things I wish were working out, instead, a list of things I've accomplished today, big and small:

* Read a lot of emails and deleted the ones I don't need (have several thousand to go, but boo hoo)

* Heard back from both Adobe and JourneyEd regarding CS5: I have to spend $449 if I want it, because I don't qualify for the post-announce free upgrade, and there's no discount for an "upgrade" version of Design Premium from CS4 to CS5. So that, plus a camera are now on my Wish List.

* Got approved for the "In Plain Sight" - Mary x Marshall fanlisting - now I just need a name for it! YAY!?

* May be on the waiting list for a focus group and put my name out there for another one; they pay well and don't take long, so why not?

* Put the dishes away

* Registered for the NSCS Region 5 Summit in Seattle, WA on July 6th and 7th. It's my last conference as an NLC member (well, a "retiring" NLC member)!

* Am researching travel options for getting up to Seattle, esp. so soon after cousin Erin's wedding in Los Angeles on the 4th. Virgin America and Southwest are looking the cheapest, since the Amtrak Coast Starlight just doesn't mesh with my needed arrival and departure times. (Also: Anime Expo from July 1-4! So 1-3 = Anime Expo, 4 = Wedding + Fireworks, 5 = ? 6-7 = Seattle! Talk about a packed schedule for one week!)

* Also researching potential post-graduation travel options. Should I go down to San Diego after my orthodontist's appointment, and then head back up with Aunt Joyce in time for the bridal shower, or hang out in North Hills with cousin Jill and fam for a few days and meet up with Joyce on the day of the shower? Train ticket to S.D. would cost me $30-32, but it's more like "What the heck would I do down there?" and "Would I be intruding?" I suppose I should ask at least, so I have the option open, right?

* Got a huge scene done in the revision of Only 16, Chapter 2: A Look Back, which starts the flashbacks that reveal more about Serenity and Endymion's past. I'm contemplating deleting those from Endymion's point of view altogether, since Only 16 really is Serena's story, and even if Darien DOES remember his past completely and is just hiding it from Serena, why give him THAT much screen time? Isn't it more suspenseful having you wonder how things are really going from his end? I've only gone into his POV a few times in the revision so far, and never very deeply. But re-reading Lilac Summers' "First Truths" has made it a lot easier to 'ship them again (*shock!*).

* Updated WikiFic to 1.15.3, and added the much-debated lyrics of "Ahead of the Game." Mass consensus agrees that the garbled lyrics in the second verse are "My liquidity, giant balance sheet. All my secrets, Hey! I'll even cheat." Though how "I'll even cheat" makes sense when Kaiba (whose image song this is) is bragging about how much smarter, more creative, etc. he is than his opponent, isn't cheating making him look worse, not better? I personally think he should have said "I won't even cheat," as if he's restraining himself from cheating just to get a horrible duel over with. What do you think?

* Got started on my graduation announcements--the paper ones. A few family members left to get addresses for and send out, and then...have to figure out the rest. *bats eyelashes* Can YOU come?

* Dabble in revisions and/or additions to the following fics: Aftermath of Angels (FF8 x YGO), You and Me (body-swap YGO Azureship fic; thanks a lot for reminding me, [ profile] mischiefmagnet!)
* Story-So-Far comparison of the book Paprika to the movie
* Revisions to previous chapters of WDKY + uploading to all the usual suspect sites -- someone on asked me if they could do a German translation of the fic! I can't read German to save my life, so should I say yes and just pray they do a decent job, or say no because I'd never be able to understand it?
azurite: (star trek: head bop)
I'm calm now, but I wasn't on Thursday and Friday, when I had to go to Van Nuys for Jury Duty. So much for my day off, right? So I plotted my schedule using the night before, figuring out which bus lines I had to take, when I had to be at the stops, and how much it would take.

The wheels on the bus go round and round )

Anyway, I opted to go to In-N-Out for lunch, since I passed it on my way home, but I was too freaked out to take a bus line different from the one I had used to get there. I ended up on a Rapid bus again, missing the In-N-Out by several blocks, and it was no fun walking through that neighborhood! The actual restaurant was in a nice-ish shopping complex called "The Plant," and it was so close to another bus line that I was pretty sure would take me to my last transfer point that I ended up doing taking that instead of walking back to the nearest Rapid stop. I got back to my transfer point with no trouble, and caught my last bus within a few minutes. My Star Trek book was pretty fascinating, but by the time the route wound through the VA Hospital, I was exhausted! I couldn't wait to get home and go to sleep...which I did, of course. For five hours. Could I be a narcoleptic?

Last night I finished reading that Star Trek book, "Federations," and I must admit, it was EXCELLENT. I might not know a lot about the original series (it's a sort of "crossover" between TOS and TNG), but it's books like those that get me itching to watch some of the episodes, even if they are dreadfully cheesy. Some of them set the stage for some great adventures! I especially loved how everything was tied up in the end, as opposed to there being messy tidbits as a result of later movies and whatnot. For the time when it came out, it fits smoothly into the timeline, as far as I can tell, versus other Star Trek novels that contradict episodes of the shows or other media. Of course, the comic that came out prior to the new Star Trek movie might not count, since it's a prequel for an alternate universe...except that prequel was SET in our Trek universe (at least I'm 99.9% sure that it was), so now I'm even more confused!
azurite: (purple nails jewels)
I recently spoke to a gentleman named "Itai." His last name might have been English or Welsh or something, but I've never heard of anyone named "Itai" before. It's funny because I have a splitting headache and I was thinking "Itai!" in my head, and so when this guy called, it was a bit amusing. I hope he never goes to Japan.

Got my paycheck, which means two things:
* Pay bills
* Get airline ticket to DC for August. Fares are only going up. Problem is, the rooms are only comped for 8/11 through 8/15, which means I could either a) pay an additional amount to stay on the night of the 16th and leave on the 17th (airfare's surprisingly not that different from Sunday to Monday; I already am paying $200 for a double room instead of a quad) or b) find a flight that leaves at an appropriate time on the 16th. "Appropriate time" is late afternoon or early evening, because I'd have to be there in the morning for the closing ceremonies and I want to participate in the Day of Service (and Sightseeing).

Most of the nonstop flights leaving DC are ONLY morning flights, so if I want to stick with that same plan for my return flight to the West Coast, I'd miss out on the last day (16th) of events. Since that's an icky plan, I'd rather save the money from staying an extra night (unless, of course, I could somehow get Associated Students to cover it as part of the travel expenses, but I'd rather use that for a student that wouldn't otherwise get to attend the Convention, e.g. a member that's not me) and leave the evening of the 16th on a flight that has one stop.

What do you think of Frontier airlines?

They have a semi-cheap, but there's a layover in Denver, Colorado for a few hours. I suppose I wouldn't mind the layover; it's short enough where I won't feel like I'm doing nothing, but it's not enough time to leave and explore (which might actually be fun, now that I think about it). But I'm more concerned about whether or not the airline is:
a) on time
b) the kind that loses or mishandles baggage
c) the kind that charges enormously for checked bags
d) has nice flight attendants

So, what do you think?

Also, part of the whole NSCS Convention is this Honor Gala, which is basically a formal event. I don't know how formal it is-- black tie vs....charcoal-gray tie or whatever, but I imagine ladies can't go strutting around in the same stuff they'd get away with in Vegas.

That said, I thought this dress looked divine. (What do you think? Any other suggestions for dress styles, colors, or stores to try?) The honor society's colors (and a color I look damn good in besides, if I do say so myself) is scarlet-- which is "Apple," by David's Bridal standards. I thought about adding a cute "Saffron" color sash and "peek-a-boo" slip/skirt, which would be in the honor society's colors. Cheesy yes, but I think I'd look fabulous in it. And the price isn't too bad, either. It's not like I'd be caught dead wearing my prom dress. I really ought to give that thing away to the Princess Project or something. o_O
azurite: (hp - rule 42: 42)
Your rainbow is strongly shaded red.


What is says about you: You are a passionate person. You appreciate energetic people. You get bored easily and want friends who will keep up with you.

Find the colors of your rainbow at

Well, back in L.A. from San Diego. Thanksgiving was nice-- delicious food, got to meet (and hold!) baby Eva, play some games with the cousins (needed David's help to beat Lemmy's castle #3 in Super Mario World...), and went shopping with Dad. No big huge drama that I was a part of or witness to, so I'd say it was a fairly successful adventure. Yesterday Dad DID get a little teed off that I wasn't back at the hotel when I said I would be, but that was because the bus from Scott's place was super-late! Not my fault-- we looked at the bus schedule and everything!

It was WONDERFUL having my own room. When I stayed one night at Dad's in Alameda before we left to L.A. on the way here, I had to suffer through his snoring. He woke me up and then KEPT me up with his snoring. To make matters worse, the next morning when he woke up, he said something to me that I barely remember-- I was so exhausted. So of course as soon as he left and it was all silent again, I fell back asleep! Dad came back and was furious that I hadn't done anything he had told me to do, and he didn't believe me when I said he snored and I fell asleep because I was so exhausted from not sleeping all night because of it! I think now he does (Baba and Grandpa said he did too, because he fell asleep at Fred's yesterday), but that doesn't mean he's going to do anything about it. -_- So yeah, it's always nice to have my own space. I don't like snorers. Sorry.

There were little annoyances here and there, but nothing HUUUGE. I'll get into it in another post. Right now, I'm actually kind of eager to get back to S.F., even if I have a workload ahead of me:
* Study for the next Biology quiz due Tuesday
* Study for the big exam tomorrow for my Women's Studies class
* Start writing my papers for my Outdoor Recreation class
* Hope that my Geology teacher gets back to me re: the 3rd assignment, because the CD that said assignment is on has mixed-up maps, and we can't complete the assignment without knowing which maps we're supposed to look at.

Some cool stuff I picked up in SD (most of it gifts):
* Yu-Gi-Oh Vocal Duel
* Yu-Gi-Oh Sound Duel I
* Sarah McLachlan's "Wintersong"
* Mannheim Steamroller's "Christmas Celebration"
* Trans-Siberian Orchestra's "The Lost Christmas Eve" (it was a tough choice; there were 2 other CDs by them I wanted at Target that I didn't get, so I limited myself to one album from each artist I liked)
* "The Tipping Point" (book)
* "How To Read Literature Like A Professor" (book)
* A new sweater + turtleneck (one $20, one free!)
* Clinique's "Black Honey" almost-lipstick
* Some more Clinique Moisturizing Gel
* "The Greatest-Ever Jewish Cooking" (book) --anyone in S.F., wanna come over and be my guinea pig as I attempt to discover my Jewish heritage through food?

Right now I'm just waiting for Dad to come back from breakfast with his buddy Steve (and hopefully remember to bring me the Raisin French Toast I requested). I think I'm going to play me some Super Mario World now, though... I love the Forest of Illusion!
azurite: (fandom destroyed my social skills)
So, I'm hanging out here at Bob Hope (Burbank) Airport, waiting for my 6:05 p.m. flight to San Francisco/Oakland. I've actually been here since about 4, because the shuttle service I got is all HARDCORE and said my pick-up time would be at 3:45. Actually, the guy came at 3:15. -_- On the bright side, I actually got to say bye to my grandparents before they went shopping.

I ended up going with Express Shuttle, which doesn't actually have a Ride-Share/Shared Van Service to where I live (and which they didn't inform me about), but they did send a PRIVATE SUV. To be precise, they sent a Honda Element. I hate box cars, but this one was actually pretty comfy. Despite the $25+ extra cost compared to Super Shuttle, this was nice-- not only did I make it to Burbank in record time, but the driver was SAFE (I can't STAND it when they don't buckle their seatbelts!) and very polite. It may very well have been WORTH the extra money, for that. Besides, the security line ended up being longer than I've ever seen it here at Burbank, and I hadn't had lunch, so I stopped by Chezz Burger and had one of the most *delicious* cheeseburgers (and it was rectangular!) I've ever had in my life. I'm sure if I'd taken Super Shuttle, none of that would have happened.

Moving on, an airport is a great place to see people of all sorts. Let's take a quick safari and see what we can see:

SPECIMEN A: Dirty-Pretty Flyer - This female mammal is surprisingly common in airports. They are often seen lingering in restrooms and being excessively concerned with their appearance, but failing to wash their hands thoroughly. The most recent sighting of this creature revealed a distaste for anything taking more than 15 seconds, which includes proper hand-washing. Soap was available in the vicinity, as were paper hand-towels, so the bizarre behavior of this female is quite shocking.

(Seriously ladies, it's FUCKING DISGUSTING to go into a place so public, so crowded and used as a restroom and NOT WASH YOUR HANDS. Some people can get away with not doing it at rarely-used restrooms --but how can you be the judge of that?-- and some have their own cleaning options --sanitary wipes or sanitizing gel-- in places whose sinks are more disgusting than anything else. But an airport, where everything is constantly re-stocked? What's your excuse for NOT using soap and washing your hands for a measly 20 seconds? Even if you're rushing to be on a flight, it's *20* seconds! And the moment someone says "Oh, but it wasn't that dirty" or "But I didn't touch anything," let me take my shovel and splat some BULLSHIT on your head. Because guess what? GERMS ARE NOT VISIBLE TO THE HUMAN EYE. And they don't need you to slather your hands all over a door handle/faucet knob/your nether-parts for them to spread! If a hardly-used university library bathroom has the highest E. Coli percentage in the ENTIRE university, beating out even the most-used restroom in the school, how do you think an airport, which sees TENS OF THOUSANDS of people daily, is in terms of germs? Even if you have regular cleaning, they're taking 30 minutes to pick up trash, refill soap/paper dispensers, and MAYBE mop. They do NOT sanitize every surface, which means GERMS ARE EVERYWHERE!)

SPECIMEN B: Illiterate Flyers - These mammals are also shockingly common, found sitting in areas clearly marked for "no stopping, sitting, standing, or loitering." They come in all ages, genders, sizes, and economic classes.

(Honestly people, the signs are spaced apart about every TWO feet. Not even a yard, EVERY TWO FEET. They're bright red. The area where you're NOT supposed to stop/sit/stand/loiter is about six feet wide and BRIGHT RED. Red meaning STOP BAD DO NOT WANT. And yet people still sit there. I honestly wish the airport had more cops patrolling it to kick these shmucks out of the way. For one, the area exists for emergencies, and I'm betting these illiterate lumps would just look around stupidly if alarms started to blare and people had to evacuate. Another thing is, the "Emergency Evacuation Pathway" is right next to the entryway of all stores, bathrooms, etc. So when they "make camp" they're blocking the paths of people getting in and out of these. And then they glare at you as if you've done something wrong by accidentally tripping over their stuck-out legs! WTF!?)

A subset of the Illiterate Flyers is the 2Bz2Read Flyer, who is too engrossed in their nails/cell phone/portable game system/book/gossip buddy/etc. to read the signs at the security check point, telling them:

a) have your boarding pass AND a photo ID out (not a birth certificate WITH a Photo ID, not your Bachelor's Degree with your airline card!)

b) Take off your jacket/blazer/coat

c) Remove all jewelry and any metal accessories, including those in your pockets, e.g. belts, money clips, sunglasses, possibly watches, bracelets, cell phones, spare change...

d) TAKE OFF YOUR DAMN SHOES - This is in effect in every airport I've been to in the past year or more. It hasn't changed. It probably won't change. Why are people still so baffled by this? You see everyone else in front of you doing it. The sign says to do it IN BIG RED LETTERS... I mean, how do you miss it?

e) All your liquids must be in 3 oz. containers or less. Oh, and that includes gels (like your hair gel, shampoos, conditioners), sprays (hairspray and other aerosols, including asthma inhalers), creams (facial creams), and pastes (toothpaste). They must be inside a SINGLE, 1-quart bag-- not a 1-gallon bag! Not a plastic grocery bag! A ZIP-TOP 1-QUART BAG! This is why stores sell cute little travel containers for all your makeups. I even make my own blends in these; they're very handy! And I hardly ever fill the bag to absolute capacity, because it's pretty easy to determine what I *really* need in my Carry-On. People that do tend to stuff their bags too full really ought to consider the benefits of bag check. And this is coming from someone who used to HATE checking bags, who has had bags delayed (sent on other flights) or man-handled. Oh, and said bag must be removed from your carry-on luggage, just as electronics like laptops must be removed from their cases.

IT'S NOT THAT HARD! I really hate it when people like this hold up security lines, especially wearing all sorts of bling as they walk through the metal detectors. Certain metals set off a detector, others don't. Minimize the amount of metal you wear, and you'll get through the security FASTER, no matter how long the line is!

Anyway, I'm sure people have seen all this, seen worse, seen more. But I just had to vent, because being around stupid people hurts my brain.
azurite: (xmas purple ornaments)
Yay, two out of three finals done! Believe it or not, my JOUR 371 (Women, Men, and Media) final didn't really feel like a final so much as a normal class session where she was lecturing and asking for discussion. I asked her after class how I did, and if I was looking at the right line of her gradebook, I got two checks, and one check-plus, which translates into a B, I'd say-- that's just for this portion of our grade, 10%; more of it is made up by the media deconstruction, the media critique (50%), 30% by other tests, and 10% by participation/performance. Overall, I'd say I'll probably get a B, which makes me happy, especially since this was a particularly difficult class.

Moving on, I also got "conditionally approved" for a Chase loan, which means I can go to Washington if I get the money on time. If that works out and I get the appropriate academic credit (hopefully 12-15 units worth; at least 6 from Journalism; it's working out just how the other 6-9 will be applied), then YAY, WASHINGTON D.C. HO!

But if not, I'm going to try not to be disappointed. I think I might be biting off more than I can chew again, even if WII and ISLP are both great opportunities for a number of different things. The great thing is, it's not like if I don't go to WII, I'll be doing nothing here at CSUN-- I got accepted into Take XX, part of the New Student Orientation Leaders team, and I'd still be working with NSLS and NSCS. I definitely don't want to stop being involved with either of them, even if I do go to Washington.

Now, if I do, there's another choice to make: to go to Macworld Expo, or not? If I do, not only can I see my friends and/or parents (most likely the latter, since... to be honest, guys, would any of you want to want to go to a Macworld Expo with me? Dad I know would, MAYBE Mom --but not together, no way, no how) again, but it's just plain fun. Plus I could always cover it as a Special Contributor to the Sundial, maybe? I applied to be a Copy Editor there, too, but I didn't officially GET the position even though the new editor-in-chief asked me. Basically, everything hinges on WII.

If I do go to WII, I'd only have Jan 14-16 to be at the Expo, since I have to check in in Washington, D.C. between 9am -5pm and be at the informal mixer by 6pm. Two days at an Expo isn't bad... but again, it's about money. Then again, if I go to WII with a loan backing me, money won't be so much of an issue anymore. It'd be icing on the cake if I managed to get a paid internship.

Speaking of icing, I really want some cupcakes... Baba said we can buy cupcakes and/or cupcake mix on the way home. I think my holiday baking spirit is getting kicked in. And crafting, too. A certain someone shall be receiving a handmade card soon (hint hint: that person is on this FL!)...

What else? Well, I've gotten some of my Secret Stalker gifts from Aria's Ink-- I decided to participate this year on a whim, and it's got me not only working on Epiphany, trying to revive a better version of Mare Serenitatis, but also looking over my old SM fics (let's be honest, except for maybe "24," and the beginning of "Quicksilver," they ALL suck; my writing has come SUCH a long way). I also did some fanart, but ssh! No one can know my secret stalker identity until the event is over... I might even try to resurrect an old idea and work on the 2003 Aria's Ink holiday competition contest.

Well, what with my tablet semi out-of-commission, coloring anything in Photoshop's a real bitch now (doing it with a mouse is... ugh, it's like taping my fingers together and trying to paint), so the fanart might have to wait until I get a new one, or unless I take the marker-colored version I did AFTER the scan and fiddle with that... but personally, I'd rather Photoshop the color in, as my inking process... well, let's just say it didn't go as well as I wanted. I'm not too much of an artist... ;_;

I'm feeling a bit more hopeful today than I was yesterday, so I hope I can channel that into studying a bit for my last final and then working on some creative (and possibly cleaning) endeavors tonight, whatever form they may take... there's always a lot on my plate, frosting or no. :)


Nov. 22nd, 2007 11:08 pm
azurite: (autumn kitty)
Greetings from FREEZING Seattle, WA... er, technically, Bellevue, I guess. Getting here wasn't so bad, but the schmucks at Alaska Airlines somehow managed to not put my checked bag (only the one, not even that big or heavy) on my flight, so I had to wait until about a half hour ago for it to be delivered to Sally's house.

Right now, we're (meaning me, my dad & Kathleen, and a few of the other cousins and aunts/uncles) are staying at a friend of Sally's house; I guess her family's out elsewhere for the holidays. It's a bit awkward to be in the home of someone I don't even know, but they did say it's okay...

And frankly, even if Sam (cousin) did say that it's "shady," at least THEY have free Wi-Fi. Seriously, I'm not the first person to point out to Sally and the boys that NOT having Wi-Fi at their house is equivalent to living in the Stone Age. (For those of you with Dial-Up, you're prehistoric.)

The Thanksgiving dinner was DELICIOUS, even though I got a stomachache after the fact-- actually though, based on the human digestive system, there's no way anything I ate at Thanksgiving could have made me sick, even if it was something I'm mysteriously allergic to. I think it was that muffin I picked up at Sea-Tac while waiting for Dan and my bag (which never came while I was there). It was one of those Costco muffins-- delicious, humongous, and bad for you, but you eat it anyway.

Pre and slightly-post dinner, I managed to work on the DIVs for "Ace of Hearts," the Sailor V x Kaitou Ace fanlisting I just started. It's about due, and I'm glad Michael (aka Honus, aka cousin-in-law, husband of Brooke) helped me out with it. Now I understand better how DIVs and CSS can work in tandem! So far it looks great, but I need to write the About, Rules, and Extras pages, make some Codes, and then, of course, Join! And promote... kinda like I am now. Pre-promoting, anyway.

I also managed to watch CSI-- I'm glad Sara got mentioned at least a little. The way the previews made it sound, the game was overtaking the lab and no one thought twice about Sara, which would have infuriated me. I liked how the lesser-seen lab techs got more time in the limelight in this episode (and Hodges had HIMSELF killed in a scenario? Wow, talk about his ego finally having been knocked down a few pegs).

I've also made headway on my portfolio for Journalism; I need access to a printer to print everything out, though. An aesthetic question of sorts: if I have these newspaper articles mounted on papers inside a 3-ring binder, what arrangement is easiest to read; with the headline closest to the rings (and you read the columns going AWAY from the binder) or the headlines closest to the edge of the page, and you read TOWARD the rings?

Had to buy a new phone, too-- just another RAZR. The 3G phone I bought for Japan finally died. The past few days, it was getting hard to open, and then on Wednesday, the screen started to flicker until it finally died and I couldn't turn it back on, even when I adjusted the battery. While I don't consider myself a hardcore phone user, I do USE it everyday for at least one phone call... but still, a little over a year strikes me as a pretty pathetic life not just for a battery, but for a phone's casing and everything in general..

The new phone is a bit different-- mine, while still a RAZR, was a different model (the V3x, from Europe). It takes some getting used to, but because syncing is so easy on the Mac, I've already got all my old contacts back, along with my calendar. I've also set the first four of my "Fave Five," though to be honest, I have no idea who #5 should be. The rest are Mom, Dad, Jill, and Baba & Grandpa. In any case, I hope by having a branded phone now, things'll be easier for me-- I can now access T-Zones, and there's no worries about incompatible phones on the website, weird text messages, etc. (Of course, I stopped getting those mysterious text messages on my old RAZR ages ago, when they finally updated their support-- I think.) I hope it also helps bring my bill down, since I was paying extra for minutes I didn't use and unlimited text messages WITHOUT myFaves. I still have the T-Mobile Hot Spot access though, which means I can go to any Starbucks or Borders and just type my heart out. That might be a nice way to spend the afternoon, especially since I won't really be able to do any "Black Friday" shopping-- unless someone else buys for me. I have to pay for my WII deposit (though it turns out I have 10 more days, since the forms I've been stressing over filling out were the digital copies, but they just sent the paper copies today).

I didn't get to announce about being accepted into the Washington Internship Institute at dinner, like I hoped-- Dad must have heard about it from Baba & Grandpa, and then it filtered through the family grapevine. When I told Dad about the costs, he started to think it wasn't legit-- and for a minute, he really had ME worried, too. Sometimes I wonder how gullible I really am; when something really sounds great to (or for) me, I probably don't stop to consider the consequences or other possibilities out there.

But it does look legit-- I mean, it's a sponsored program from Golden Key, one of my honor societies. But what I think is a good idea is trying to contact some people who supposedly were interns in the program before and find out what they thought.

What else? I'm exhausted and still have a stomachache-- so even though I'm on a couch in a room with curtains that won't close, I think I'll go to bed. This isn't really a vacation, after all...
azurite: (so2:bluesphere - rena)
What a weekend! Part of me doesn't think it should end yet. It wasn't exactly exciting, but there was certainly a lot going on. For starters, I finally got inducted into the NSCS (National Society of Collegiate Scholars) after about two years of actually being a member, and nearly a semester of being an officer... I'm really happy! Not only have I made friends and expanded my network, but I've gotten the opportunity to travel, meet new people, and be challenged in lots of ways. Even the little projects I undertake (like my current one, creating a postcard for the upcoming Hunger Banquet on 11/27) teach me a lot about preparedness and reading the fine print!

I was especially thrilled that Mom and Jill came out to the induction... yes, MOM from San Francisco. Dad didn't come, and there was all that drama revolving around that, but as per usual, when he called tonight, he didn't mention the ceremony at all (other than "so what's up with you lately?") and didn't mention his not coming. I'm a bit disappointed, but working is a good reason not to be able to go to places 500 miles away even if it is a once-in-a-lifetime event for your only daughter and all that jazz.

After the induction, I hung out at Jill's and had a delicious dinner of pasta and carrot cake, played "Cooking Mama" for the first time with some of my second cousins (my god, Wii games are tough... you really have to have arm strength for some of those!), and played around with their soon-to-be-fixed puppy, a Chihuahua mix named Rocky.

The next morning, Jill dropped Mom off at the house and we (along with Baba and Grandpa, of course) went to brunch at Abe's. We tried to go to Brent's, but it was a 30-45 minute wait for just 4 people, and it was already after 11 a.m. by then. :( Though the service at Abe's left a lot to be desired, the food was pretty good. Mom got the grand tour of the house when we got back, and then we headed back to Jill's so she could get ready to take the Van Nuys Flyaway bus back to LAX.

I'm thinking of trying to do that for my flight from LAX to SEA-TAC, since it's so much cheaper than a shuttle, but I'll need a way of getting from here to the Flyaway. Maybe I can ask Jill to drop me off? A taxi would be too much money, and the bus would force me to transfer (not fun with luggage) and wake up soooo early... X_X

So there's that to do, along with trying to help Baba & Grandpa figure out a way to get from here to the Westin LAX, where they'll be staying (courtesy of Mom) before their flight to SEA-TAC.

I've also got to buckle down on my project for 371. I bought two new books on video games today-- I mean serious research books. I'm just glad they were in-stock at Borders! I didn't want to have to wait to special order anything, and I already checked the school library's (pitiful) stock of books in that category...

Speaking of school, the University Student Union's website is lacking something critical: a map. Somehow last week I'd found one when I was working on the Hunger Banquet postcard, but it was a PDF file, and I deleted the original. I didn't properly optimize it for a high-res postcard though, so when I tried to find it again, every possible search came up nil. Even the maps I did find are hopelessly outdated. -_-; So I need to get the names of TWO measly rooms I don't remember off-hand, and then I can submit the postcard for printing.

I also noticed that the Golden Key (International Honour Society)'s website is also lacking-- despite many states being classified into "regions," I failed to find anything that indicated which states are in which regions. Finally, a UCLA site gave me a clue: CA is in Region 9, along with Nevada, New Mexico, Hawaii, and Texas. So I guess that means "Southwestern" states. I joined the new myGK, which is semi-social networking-- it's pretty easy to use. It'll be nice when both it and the new websites get up and running.

Speaking of NSCS again, my postcard that I worked on so laboriously is in the running for the official NSCS holiday postcard! I'm up against some pretty beautiful designs (the kind that make you go "Now why didn't I think of that!?"... I had another one of those moments today at Borders when I spotted their cute polar bear-and-fairy pair for their new ads... so cute!), but I was in the top 5 when I last checked! I told all the members at the induction to vote for me, so hopefully that'll swing some more votes my way. :)

I've also registered for my classes for next semester. They are:
* SCENE Magazine (FINALLY!)
* Women and Leisure (online!)
* Advanced Narrative Writing
* Pop Culture (not with the professor I wanted, but supposedly a really good one)
* Writing About Literature

I'm still hoping to get an internship (gotta get my rec letter back from Mel for the Washington Internship Institute, due by the 16th!), but it might end up being a summer internship, and depending on where it is and whom it's sponsored by, it might not count for Journalism credit. If that doesn't work out, I've applied to be a copy editor at the Sundial. It's only one unit, and copy editors don't have to meet in the early mornings twice a week like the other editors do. (I'm more of a correction-editor than an assignment-editor, anyway.) So we'll see how that works out. Even if it can't count for Journalism credit, part of me is hoping to get the Target internship, because it sounds fun, good experience, and of course, pays really well.

Lastly and not leastly, I've gotten addicted to a new semi-crack-worthy pairing-- this time from Star Ocean 3: Till The End of Time. Anyone like some Albel Nox x Nel Zelpher? Because yeah, for some reason I really started to like them together, and now I've started reading fic for them and I joined their fanlisting. :P Gah, and I have yet to build the Sailor V x Kaitou Ace fanlisting! I gotta get on that...
azurite: (csi: gsr wall)
WOW. So as if getting to hang out on the set of CSI wasn't cool enough (all right, it would have been cooler if I got to talk with Jorja Fox and George Eads, or see William Petersen), the day before yesterday I got a very nice, vaguely familiar envelope in the mail...

I got invited to the Delegation on Communication in Journalism in AUSTRALIA! AGAIN! This is the second year I've been invited, but because last year I was in Japan, I missed the deadline for turning the application in. The fact that I got invited again despite the drama that happened last semester means I'm still gold to somebody out there, and I don't want to pass this opportunity up.

Of course, there's always a catch. Just like the coolest media internship programs, this delegation costs money. It covers airfare, travel insurance, accommodations, food, and, if I want, an extra few days touring around the most exotic parts of Australia. HOW COOL IS THAT!? *squeeballs*

Anyway, it's $6789 total, which is... a lot, of course. The first deposit of $649 has to be made before December 17th, which is not a bad thing-- I mean, I could easily put that amount on my credit card and pay it back in 2-3 chunks over the next few months. But then in January, $2000 would be due, with the remainder due in February. That's the money I'm not so sure about, because my highest credit limit is on my Macy*s Visa (which I never intend to use outside of Macy*s *AS* a Visa), and I don't see any way of my job (or even my Spring Semester financial aid check, really) covering that.

But there's no way I'm just going to give up hope now. I have to look into things-- scholarships, other financial aid. My dad would probably tell me to ask the Journalism department here at CSUN to fund it so I could write some sort of story, but I doubt that they'd do that. I always doubt that sort of generosity from this department... -_- (Then again, this department seems pretty broke half the time, so...) Anyone have any ideas? It's power fundraising time-- not just for DonorsChoose and AIDS Walk, but Mer, too! :O!!!

(Did I also mention I got invited into another honor society, the Golden Key? DAMN. I feel... smart, like there's another me out there faking everyone out, and I'm basking in this. I don't feel like I deserve it, but on the flip side, I'm really excited, happy, and proud.)

* WDKY IS FOUR YEARS OLD AS OF YESTERDAY (10/9). Someone hit me upside the head with an inspiration-motivation-mallet, please. the last time I let a fanfiction fester for this long was Only 16, and that... didn't turn out so well. It wasn't even as long as WDKY!
* Updated my online portfolio/resume with my latest articles. Also added them to Facebook, including the CSI article. Headline sucks, but I didn't make it up. Read the article if you like, though, and tell me what you think!
* Damn, I feel busy all the time. I'm glad the weekend's coming up, though-- I mean, I'll be busy anyway, with the NSCS garage sale (and the weekend after that, the AIDS Walk-- squee, already raised $275!), but maybe I'll use the sale as a chance to clean my room or something. And maybe get some computer stuff done, too.

...I wanna read more CSI fic. I've read 2 60+ chapter fics (yesterday's was 81 and COUNTING) in the past week or so, and... I'm hooked! More GSR plz!
azurite: (she must have been drunk and horny)
From sometime on Thursday night:

Why is it that the best-tasting food can be what gives you the worst stomachache? While almost everyone else is going out to South Street to meet with the CSUN chapter's former president Anne, I'm stuck here at the hotel with the stomachache that won't quit. My consolations: internet and chatting with Shawn. Thank god for small miracles.

You Are 29% Scary

You scare men off ocassionaly, but only very weak men.
You're a normal woman. You're not perfect, but you're pretty darn close.

o_O Interesting. To be honest, I would have expected to get higher, but maybe the opinion of real men (and not a quiz) would be more accurate. :P
azurite: (potc - will nice hat)
Greetings from Philadelphia! My trip here was nothing if not eventful- our original flight departing from LAX was delayed from 11:45 till 12:30, and when we finally made it to Cincinnati, Ohio, we had JUST missed our connecting flight to Philadelphia, so we had to get rescheduled on two separate flights-- another Delta for half of us, and an earlier US Airways mini-jet for the other half (that's the one I was on). I fell asleep during the bulk of the first flight and the second, even though the second was significantly more uncomfortable. We had to wait once we got to PHL, and I ended up conking out near the baggage claim again. Even when everyone was reunited, our shuttle didn't show up on time even though we (and several other NSCS members) called-- so we split 2 taxis, and it ended up being cheaper.

The hotel is nice-- just unexpectedly small. Our rooms weren't ready, so we had to settle for a king-sized bedroom with FOUR people... so Juana (from CSUN) is sleeping on a chair with some cushion-chairs, and Melissa (from Holy Cross), Tiffany, and I are sharing the bed until the hotel sorts out our rollaway/extra bedding situation. They gave the option to go to the nearby Marriott, but considering us CSUN students are staying an extra night, that's not really an option.

We had a welcome ceremony of sorts for the Leadership Summit at 7:00, but after that the food selection was pathetic (hot dogs, Velveeta, and pizza), so we went out after a bit to Sonny's Famous Cheesesteaks and hung out there and ate for a while-- they had DELICIOUS cheesesteaks (though apparently their rep isn't as big as Gino's or Pat's) and fries. We watched some of "The Untouchables" (when was Kevin Costner that young!?) and then headed to Franklin's Fountain (an ice cream place) where I paid way too much for a peach melba parfait in a Chinese takeout box (which is apparently the original ice cream box). By then, I had a cramp (rag and all), but we hung out to talk a bit more with some of the other people that had come with us (roommates of the boys, mostly, and some friends of the girls' roommates) and then headed back.

After that, we hung out in the boys' room, where I ended up doing 2 tarot readings, one for Melissa and one for Melina-- they both seemed to think it was "creepy accurate." After a while, my voice got sore, and I decided to finally come back to the room, get Internet... talk to Shawn a bit (^_______^) and then go to bed, since I do have to wake up at 7:30 for breakfast just a bit after.

I spaced and totally forgot my resumes, but at least there's a business center so I can print them from this Mac. :D
azurite: (azureshipping - fantastic)
I blame [ profile] ceruleansan for this one. Her and [ profile] an_ardent_rain for providing me with Azureshipping to make me jealous of, and [ profile] guardian_kysra for writing "Clean" and "Unclean," which will forever be stuck in my head. THUMBS UP, LADIES!

This isn't Grimms Fairy Tale, folks... )

Tonight wasn't too bad at all. I finally met up with Erin and Joyce (actually, they picked me up after getting lost here in S.F. Haha! I don't know SF driving-wise at all. I think of everything in terms of bus routes) and we headed to IKEA in Emeryville and then got a bit lost trying to get to Dad's place in Alameda. Erin and I played with Roy a bit (Roy still loves me :D :D) and then we went to dinner at this small Thai place with a "cute" young waitress (Joyce kept saying she was "cute," even though I thought the girl wasn't that young; she was probably between 16 and 19, which I think is beyond "cute" age in the usual sense of the word). The food was good, though I had leftover Gai Yang, so I brought it home.

We went back to S.F. and I got to see Erin's new apartment (in which I broke the toilet somehow, because it was running/not flushing and my opening the lid and dropping some tube thing didn't help), which is small, but very nice. And when she gets all the stuff she put together from IKEA set up, it'll look very nice. I helped her schlep all the furniture up the 2 flights of stairs, since she doesn't have an elevator in her place yet (but it's still nice, even though it's tiny as all hell and she's paying $400 more than my mom is- and my Mom has 2 bedrooms and a sunroom!).

Anywhoozles, tomorrow I head to the DLP in Moraga-- alas, the people I was going to carpool with either switched DLPs or are going on Saturday, so I'll be going all by my lonesome (hah) on the BART and bus. No biggie, been there, done that. The hard part's always packing light, especially since this is supposed to be a big important business-type event, so I have to ONLY bring what I need. And I still "need" to figure out some way of using Gary's printer (an HP Photosmart C6100) wirelessly. I figured how to do it Computer-to-Computer (ad hoc), but then it messes up any computers that DO use it wirelessly via Mom's router. Anyone have any idea how to do this? The instruction manual seemed pretty useless on this front.

I hope I can get up early enough tomorrow to still get my nails (and maybe my brows) done, and if I'm feeling bold, I can swing by the Metreon to grab that Writer's Toolbox from Chronicle Books that I want. Maybe the more craft books/kits I have, the more inspiration I can get/dish? [ profile] akavertigo and I are supposed to be challenging each other to get writing, but 1) her challenges were HARD HARD HARD (and I don't see how to fit them into WDKY at all, let alone WDKY25), and 2) I can't think of anything to challenge her back with atm.

Of course, I don't even know if I'll have Internet access this weekend, but regardless, I want to have my laptop so I can at least "write" things down. I would hate it if inspiration DID strike and I had nothing to write/type on but little scraps of paper like I did back in the day.

That said... I should probably get to sleep. :P I kept napping throughout today, which explains why I'm always so tired in the daytime, but relatively perky at night. If I just force myself to go to bed at a semi-reasonable hour, maybe I won't feel so compelled to sleep in the daytime-- which, this weekend would be Very Bad (meriting caps, you see).
azurite: (cat and mouse)
Okay, so I'm leaving SD in a little bit, but I've managed to somewhat catch up on my LJ FL (I'm about 400 entries back at the moment), and I've gotten a bunch of LJ-related Greasemonkey scripts which are doing some pretty cool and interesting things! I even got a few new extensions, like Auto Copy (handy for all the memes I do), and a script for GM that allows me to see additional user info besides the LJ default hover box.

I had a bit of a stomachache earlier, but the graduation party was pretty fun. I talked to this one couple for a long time about San Francisco and journalism (since Erin's moving up there tomorrow, and I'm going up to visit tomorrow... hey everyone, should I plan a bonfire?)

The food was delicious, even if my stomach is still doing some flips. There was a great chicken pasta salad with beets, celery, cashews, and cinnamon, and some to-die-for macaroons dipped in chocolate and shortbread sandies. Tasty!

Your Scent is Pumpkin Pie

Warm, comforting, and a bit old fashioned
You've got what men want - believe it or not!

Speaking of memes, I mentioned to [ profile] heartless_vaz that I might try to do my own version of the "What Gemstone are you?" including more stones than the usual quizzes-- and there are a lot of those on the web. Alas, they seem a bit superficial, like someone only checked one small site for the meanings or general associations of gemstones. I've always been kind of curious why I've gotten so attached to Azurite, and why I feel it suits me so much, so I wonder if I'll be "Azurite" according to my own quiz? I'll probably make it on Quizilla, so when I get around to it (assuming I don't forget or get too overwhelmed with other things in SF), you'll see that from me soon. :)

I wish more people had taken my quiz about women/sex, though! I wanted more guys to expand the results a bit... if it sounds like something you want to take, let me know and I'll link you, or you can look back in my post history about 2 weeks and find it.
azurite: (kitty catch)
The best things in life are free
da da da dah
But you can keep them for the birds and bees
Give me money!
That's what I want
That's what I want (That's what I want)
That's what I waaaaaaaant
That's what I want (That's what I want)

So today I went with Mom to the Semester at Sea Open Ship event aboard the MV (formerly Universe) Explorer docked at Pier 35, and WOW! That ship is AMAZING. Mom's been on cruises before on luxury liners (I haven't) and even she was saying the ship was impressive. Okay, so the dorm rooms are about the size of my closet and the beds aren't even a twin, but the rest of the ship is just AMAZING. The classrooms have glass tables and soft, round, rotating chairs. The whole ship is wireless for internet and satellite phone, and there are snack bars, entertainment centers, a small pool, fitness centers, a full SPA! It's really incredible. And to get to travel/see the world and learn at the same time, sometimes from incredibly renowned people? Chance of a lifetime.

The catch? It's about $21,000. I have about $5000 in scholarship and loan money at the moment (not counting my Presidential Scholarship... for reasons which should be obvious), which has always been enough to cover for CSUN. I think as a senior, I can take out more money from the loans, but that's really a last resort. I'd rather get more scholarships and grants. The Institute for Shipboard Education has scholarships up to $7000, and work-study, but the latter programs are only available to students with an Expected Family Contribution (on their FAFSA) of $0. And while I've never actually received any money from either my mom or my dad for college, that's NOT what it says on my FAFSA, which is calculated according to taxes and such. Things that I have no control over, basically, since I can't be an independent student until I'm 25, even if I don't live with either of my parents, and, as far as I know, neither of them claim me (and though my grandparents *CAN*, they don't).

I thought I could apply and be notified of my status on the spot, but they want EVERYTHING ready-- not just the transcripts and clearance form, but the application (which had to be done on paper, because the computers were being fixed) and the attached essay. But because I went to the event, I can at least get the application fee waived, which is nice. So I can write that essay and mail everything out soon.

...So Dad (whom I saw today after the event) lent me his giant Peterson's Guide to Grants, Scholarships and Prizes. It's several hundred pages, with millions of listings, so let's hope I can get at least a few of them if I get accepted into SAS so I can actually *GO.* That and maybe I'll stage a fundraiser. ^^;

That said, the suckiness of today was that I lost my 7-day bus pass. Where, I don't know. Maybe on the ship, maybe on the 47 on the way to the Pier... I don't know. I went back to the ship to look for it, but I couldn't find it in any of the places I remember going or sitting, and no one in any of those areas had found it. I even left my number with an alum, but no call back. :( I know I'm only here for 2 more days, but still! What a waste of $24. I didn't take nearly as many bus trips as the value of the card was worth, and I'm really disappointed in myself. And my pants, with their stupid shallow pockets.

But the F-train that I took to the Embarcadero Bart had a really amusing driver, plus the cash box was broken, so I didn't have to pay anyway. I got enough money for the BART, and I met Dad at the Crucible. We went out for supper at this cute hole-in-the-wall Mexican Wrap place in Alameda, where I had 2 delicious enchiladas, and a kindergartener that learned the Mexican Hat Dance performed for us. He got a flan for his trouble-- so cute! And before I left, I had two of the very friendly servers speaking Japanese! :D Haha~

I then went with Dad to his new house (this is the 3rd place he's lived in since moving to Alameda; the last one was the one that burnt down/got flooded), which is a very nice place with a nice backyard of sorts, pretty stained glass windows, and big polished wooden columns. Very "Dad." And Roy (the cat) likes me! He meowed at me a lot, and liked to let me pet him. :) But he's a very big and somewhat irritable cat-- his tail was always swooshing!

We all watched "Chronicles of Riddick" (which I didn't really get; I guess it would have helped to have watched "Pitch Black" first, eh? But Dad said it was pretty scary), and had some Kettle Korn and Mexican Coca-Cola from the wrap place we'd gone to. Mexican Coke is the best! :D None of that high fructose corn crap-- it's REAL SUGAR! (Real teeth rot! YAY!) and then Dad took me to the Fruitvale Bart.

So here I am back at home, mildly amused because I saw a restaurant named "Namu" (as in, Malik's alias during the beginning of Battle City) on my way back home on the 31. I guess it was a good day-- I hope I can do a bit of shopping tomorrow and maybe hang out with people some more.

Recent Acquisitions:
* "Chew on This" by Eric Schlosser, the author of "Fast Food Nation." It's more on fast food, but it's not as difficult a read as FFN. Very good! Makes me want to teach it! There are a lot of good ideas for using it in various subjects in classes.

* Yu-Gi-Oh! Capsule Monsters for PS2. (It was $9, I couldn't resist)

* Enya: Shepherd Moons. Nice music to fall asleep to. I got it at Goodwill for only $3.49, and it was in perfect condition!

* "Diary of a Mad Bride" and "Mermaid Saga 1," also obtained at Goodwill-- both in brand-new condition, for only $1.49 each. The manga even had the original Borders barcode sticker still on the back! :D

* Do Not Disturb lavender-and-rice-filled warming relaxation wrap. It takes 1 minute and 20 seconds to heat in the microwave to a good temperature that totally relaxes my shoulders, soothes headaches, and helps me sleep or relax. It was only $25 at the Discovery Channel store, which is unfortunately going out of business (except online).

I've also been editing WDKY as of late-- Chs. 9-12 all have been fixed, but not uploaded anywhere as of yet. I figure I'll do everything in order to get a sense of the story up until now (Ch. 25) and then just re-upload everything everywhere, all at once. It'll also be nice to work on the various portions of the WDKY website, so I can remember all the things that inspire me for particular parts of the saga.

That said... I think I'll look at Ch. 13 and then go to bed.
azurite: (sailormoon - galaxia sun)
So I called Amtrak today, and indeed, the North American Rail Pass (the one that's good for 30 days and has unlimited travel) is $899.10 student discounted (that's as low as it can get). The easiest way to buy it is over the phone, but you have to have AT LEAST the first segment of the trip planned. And for me, that means knowing I have the money available, places where I can stay (and reservations, if necessary), and so on. I've got a lot more planning to do, and I've got to see if I get that NSCS credit card-- if not, I might end up getting a WaMu one. I don't LIKE the idea of being in debt -I mean, moreso than I already am just for being a college student with loans- but I don't want to just shove this great idea aside. I can and I will make it possible-- somehow.

In the meantime, I got my ticket to Philadelphia with the rest of the NSCS; the unfortunate thing is that they didn't have enough Rewards Points to cover my hotel/convention registration. I'm hoping I win this Geico essay competition that will pay for it. Even those that are getting some portion reimbursed are only getting $50 out of the $314 round trip tickets. It's on Delta, which is "meh" in terms of airlines in my book, but we could have taken a cheaper flight if only everyone's schedules weren't so restrictive. Unlike a lot of other members, I'm not taking summer school, and my work's fairly flexible about taking time off.

...Still haven't heard from Apple one way or another, which frankly doesn't surprise me. It's kind of sad that it worked out that way, though...

Ooh, and Erin said she's getting my CS3 *today*! I hope I see her soon so I can get it. That would be cause for much yayness.

In the meantime, I've got enough to keep me occupied, so I'm glad for that.

ETA: Just one teeny tiny software/journaling question )
azurite: (gundam senshi!)
Uno - I have another mysterious mark on me that I don't know where it's from. This time it's a quarter-sized red welt on my left leg, just below my knee. WTF, mate?

Dos - Okay, so Adobe CS3 is out. Looks like I need the "Design Premium" package, which is $600 for InDesign, Photoshop Extended, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, Acrobat Professional, Bridge, Version Cue, Connect, Stock Photos, and Flash. Considering that's a savings of $1200, I guess it's not too bad, but thankfully I'm not in a rush to get it. If it goes on sale this summer, all the better-- because it's not #1 on my list of priorities. It's just up there.

Tres - Speaking of "lists," I want to add Office 2007 for Mac on my list, even though it's so much weirder looking than Office 2003 or any of the previous versions of Office:MAC. I just want legit, up-to-date software. Thankfully it looks to only be about $80 with tax. But, like CS3, it can wait.

Quatre (I mean QUATTRO! Damn you, Gundam Senshi!) - Today there's a guy from the LA Times coming to speak after Media Law class... then Thursday there's the last NSCS meeting, where I'll find out if I got an officer position and what we're all going to do for the NSCS Convention airfare. Then from THERE I can figure out where my summer travel plans stand. I need more ideas for locations to visit. So far I've only got:
* New York, NY - visit family/be a dumb tourist/go crazy shopping/visit my favorite magazines?
* Washington, D.C. - It's the Capitol. Do I need to say more?
* New Orleans area - [ profile] guardian_kysra and good food!
* Somewhere in the Mid-West - The place where Bobby Flay went to challenge the owner of the Paradise Cafe? They sound like they have good breakfasts! :D~~
* Somewhere in Canada - [ profile] mklutz? (There's someone else, and I am ashamed to admit I think I have forgotten. [ profile] escaperoot? Was it you?) Or the giant mall? Or the pretty park? Or, or, or...?
* Tuscon, AZ - [ profile] atlantian_magic, possibly my cousin David if he's not off fraternizing like the frat boy he is, and maybe the Grand Canyon and that overpriced scary escalator?
* Portland, OR? - Heard it's pretty and they have good food.

Cinco - Got my bookcase yesterday. There's parts on the larger sideboards that have patches of holes-- like, pin-hole size, but a lot of them (and they're in no particular pattern or shape). Grandpa said it was probably from their lifting tools in the factory. It bothers me because the holes are pretty prominent (they're black on finished pine) and they're on the OUTSIDE of what is going to be my bookcase. I don't know, should I be bothered? I can always call Dad and ask what he thinks.

Seis - Went to Physical Therapy again today for my shoulder-- can't wait to get my wheeled leather bag now, because my backpack + purse (even though I don't feel like they're that heavy) are completely pwning me. The place was abandoned except for me and the woman, who it turns out is the Physical Therapy professor, and the students (including Jeff) that I saw last week are GRAD students, and they got excused from work today because they have their major exam this Thursday and Friday, and then they GRADUATE. >_< I have all the luck, don't I? Ah well. :P


May. 2nd, 2007 09:47 pm
azurite: (cat: what the shit is this!?)
I found [ profile] diaphanus's (aka Ian) LJ through a search of DIES GAUDII, the "famous" site that explains some of the interesting naming schemes, myths, and mix-ups throughout the Sailor Moon universe. I decided to check out some of the things Ian wrote, and I found this interesting video from 1967 about what they predicted kitchens in 1999 would be like.

They weren't TOO far off, but I wish more people had computers (or fridges, etc.) that could watch their calorie /mineral/etc. intake to better take care of their health. It's already 2007, and anything remotely like that (if it even exists) would probably cost a fortune. I'm not promoting being obsessive about that sort of thing, but if there were a way to be both proactive (not lazy) and have an easy way of understanding what you're putting into your body when you eat that cheeseburger or drink that soda, I don't think America would have quite the obesity epidemic that it does. Or maybe it would, what do I know?

I'm also thinking I probably shouldn't dig too intensely into summer internships since I *will* be working, at the very least, at the Call Center/Walk-In Center, and possibly also with Apple as a Campus Rep (though I have yet to receive some package from the agency, Volt). But I still have a MonsterTRAK search agent set up, and I can do the same at Yahoo! HotJobs. I didn't find the Yahoo! internship article I was looking for, but Yahoo! does have some other good resources on the subject, including Yahoo! Answers and their directory of Internships.

That said, another thing I found via Ian: Argh, it's L-U-T-H-O-R you dimwits! Which reminds me, I need to get S4 of "Lois and Clark." I actually "need" a lot of things lately. It's good I haven't gone and bought them all yet; I'm not broke, but there are so many things, and prioritizing them in order of real "need"/importance is actually pretty hard.

Opinions? What should be #s 1, 2, and 3? Kensington wheeled leather laptop case - $71.99 Sailor Moon Memorial Music Box (10 CD Set) - $75.99 (or cheaper) Lois and Clark, Season 4 Boxed Set - $36.52-$41.99
Adobe Creative Suite 3 (Universal Binary) for Web - $499.00
Amtrak North America Rail Pass - $899.10 for 30 days of unlimited travel throughout the US, including a leg in Canada on VIA Rail
Something else...?

Thing is, if I'm saving up for the Rail Pass, I have to save up for where I'm going to stay, necessities like food, and souvenirs, too. Who knows how much that'll add up to? I know I can stay at hostels, and Mom might even hook me up for at least one location (hopefully Washington D.C), and if I visited New York, I might be able to stay with a relative (though staying at the Essex House again would kick ASS, especially if I weren't SICK this time around!). I'd probably need to budget at least $1000 just for that, which brings up the possibility of getting a credit card to fund it, rather than just let that idea slip away based on my current funding. Getting paid once monthly isn't fun, and this month, because I missed a few days of work due to doctor's appointments, I didn't get paid as much as usual. :( Or I won't get paid as much as usual, I should say. I haven't gotten paid yet; I just filled out the time sheets. Feels kind of old-fashioned.

Still waiting for my bookcase in the mail. Need to clean my room. And this weekend I wanted to go to Topanga Canyon to look into more pantsuits (and jackets), but James (cousin, son of Jill) is having his birthday party (Pirate-themed! Wahaha!) which I should probably go to (and what could I get James that he probably doesn't already have? I mean, all the games I know he likes are ones he already owns! Unless I get him Katamari or a GameStop gift card...). And now Apple ProCare members also get this One on One training, so I can sit down with an "Expert" and find out all there is to know about iPhoto and GarageBand without waiting for a workshop with a good time to show up on the Northridge store calendar. They have sucky dates for this weekend though-- nothing on Sunday, only Friday and Saturday evening, which is cutting it close if I have other plans at Jill's. But that can wait, I guess.

I don't know, I guess I just feel kind of busy and addled lately, but I don't want to get stressed. I want massages more often. And appointments with cute physical therapists at school. *impish grin* Alas, I don't get to see said cute guy at my next appointment on Tuesday. :P But maybe someday... Hehe.
azurite: (deadlines whoosh)
I'm considering going to the NSCS Convention 2007 in Philadelphia, PA. I asked my Mom a few weeks ago to check into a possible discount at the hosting hotel, which is a Starwood property, but none of her contacts have gotten back to her, so she recommended I just make the reservation for the Convention + Summit All-Inclusive (Jul. 18-21, four nights in a 4 person bedroom). At first, I was just looking at plane fares, but most are $350-$400 round-trip, and those are for flights a) on airlines I don't like or b) at ungodly hours of the morning, or c) on airlines with a 50% probability of being on time, when being on time is CRITICAL.

So I started to look at Amtrak, and I thought, it might be kind of cool to start out 3 days early and see the whole country via train. I would make it by 2:50pm on the day I need to be there, having spent the last 2 days (the first day having been partial and leaving in the evening) touring around. I might not be able to actually STAY in any of those cities, but I'm pretty sure there'd be some decent stop-overs in many places.

With a 42-hour stretch between Los Angeles and Chicago, I'd definitely need a room, but that tacks on an additional $421 to the $206 seat price, for a grand total (with my new Student Advantage discount) of around $648. Round trip would be around $1200, which is pretty much out of the question, since it doesn't even include the cost of the convention/registration, let alone food, etc. But train + plane might be viable; it'd be around $800, plus another $329 for the convention + summit all inclusive.

The catch is, I'd have to register for the convention before April 30th, and who knows how long plane or train ticket rates are any good. So I'm kind of in a quandary here, wondering what the best way to get from here to there might be. Any ideas?

I have the money to do it either way (and possibly any other methods people might know of), but I'd actually like to SAVE my money for more permanent, useful things, such as Adobe Creative Suite CS3. Or visiting Scott in Japan, assuming he ends up enjoying his time there and sticks around.

He's leaving tomorrow. He's supposed to be calling me soon. I have to say, I'm somewhat surprised with myself over it all. I'm not upset. In fact, I'm really, genuinely happy for him. I hope he enjoys it a lot (despite the cold or the humidity) and he both learns a lot and teaches many kids. I hope he stays in touch and shares his experiences with me. People keep asking "So are you guys together?" and my answer's pretty much been "Well, whenever he's here..." and I'm fine with that. I want to focus more on my school work now, anyway. I've got so much on my plate, and again, I hardly feel like I have enough time to do it all in.

Tomorrow, for example, is my busiest day. I haven't caught up with my Japanese, done my Narrative Writing assignment for Thursday, or found the font for Graphics in the evening. But I'm so exhausted from today (which went by insanely fast) that I plan on going to sleep soon and just waking up early.

I'm considering asking Baba and Grandpa to replace my shades/curtains in my room, because I hate how they hardly keep out any light, and I think that's really what they're supposed to do. If it were as simple as just needing privacy, I could cover my windows with stickers.

I've also been getting distracted by WikiFic, which I've been adding tons of articles to. I recently rolled out the Card Article Creators, so people can easily generate articles (complete with templates) about cards found in the TCG, Anime, Manga, or Video Games. I've already tested it out with Magician's Valkyria, and it's working well, though I still need to add a few more graphics for the Levels, what Counterfeit Cards look like (makes me wish I *had* bought some YGO cards in Hong Kong, just for shits and giggles), and of course, the thousands of card images out there. I need to establish an Image Policy, as well. Obviously, help in ANY area of writing for WikiFic would be much appreciated. :)

Well, Scott hasn't called yet, so I might as well get ready for bed and just talk to him in bed whenever he does call... and I hope he does call. :(
azurite: (violet lips)
"But it's still winter!" you say. "Why Mer, are you thinking about Spring Break already?"
"Why," says I, "it's because I have a $100 United gift certficate that must be booked by January 31st! I can travel any time until January 31st of 2008, but I have less than a month to book! Whatever shall I do? Wherever shall I go?"

Note: my Spring Break starts from March 30th (Friday evening) to April 8th (Sunday evening). I might not be able to leave Friday evening if I have work, but leaving on the weekend seems to make travel more expensive. Likewise, since classes restart on Monday (the 9th) in the mid-morning, I'd rather be back and comfortable (and ready to go) before that.

Also, if you have suggestions for ways to budget-travel, let me know... but obviously, I have to fly United to make my gift certificate worth it. :P

[Poll #901425]

Sakura Mae

Dec. 27th, 2006 10:49 pm
azurite: (tokyo map)
Greetings from the lobby/lounge area of the Sakura Hostel in Asakusa, Tokyo. Today was a challenge, being that we had to be up around 4:30am to get a bus to the Hong Kong airport only to wait around for a few hours and sit on a mostly-empty plane back here to Japan. But we made it! And I got to see "The Lake House," which, while horribly predictably and totally paradoxical, was romantic-squishy-fun for me.

Also, I am screwed for money (again). I'm honestly trying to figure out exactly where I went wrong, and the only thing I can genuinely think of is: food. Plus country-hopping does horrid things to my money, because you're stuck using an exchange rate and the buy-sell rate of various banks in airports. And today, Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ at Narita refused to take my coin money (all of $12.40 HKD, which isn't much), so I have to try and change it somewhere else or be stuck with Monopoly money that I can't spend (pretty much).

I think part of it is also that I ended up getting gifts where I initially didn't budget for them: I got more things for my Mom and Dad, even though I had already bought (and sent, for a lot of money, because EMS is expensive!) because I found things that "fit," and I also ended up getting omiyage for my tutors and roommates. And I also bought myself a few things here and there --a Mulan picture frame, some nice Disney Princess stickers, a Space Mountain photo, and a few random other things... some gifts for other people, too, but every time I calculated it out in my head, it never seemed much (in USD, anyway). But after paying for the hostel (I did it all at once, so as to not be broke and have to ask Bonnie for money), I have something like ¥2000 left. I am making a transfer from my PayPal (the money from the PayPerPost entries), and I transferred funds between Savings and Checking to help out... what's killing me is the $108 bill I have to pay on 1/10. I don't think the Exchange Students are getting paid on the 5th, the next Friday after we get back, which WOULD be our payday if we hadn't had vacation and that wasn't the first day back after the break. Hopefully the 12th, since we'll have another week of EC plus the pre-break EC sessions to get paid for. But until the 23rd when I leave, that's it.

I feel horrible, because Dad, Baba & Grandpa all pooled together and gave me that great and generous Hanukkah gift, and here I am wondering wtf it all went. I can blame part of it on being responsible-- paying bills and not just going crazy and buying totally POINTLESS things... mostly. :( Also, there are fees for every damn thing-- part of the reason why my bill is so high. I just hope I don't have any issues with the next NTT/Yahoo! BB bills I'm going to get. I don't know what I'll do if I can't scrounge up the money. I HATE (and I use that word SPARINGLY, to give you an idea of how much I don't usually "hate") asking people for money, especially if they've been exceedingly generous in the past.

I can't wait to get back to the States where there'll be a job and a big, fat financial aid check waiting for me. I do have to pay Mom back immediately (for helping me out with the phone bill, not to mention all the packages she sent), and there is no way in hell I'm just going to slack off and not EARN that damn scholarship; if anything, this is the wake-up call not to spend so much money. The Seishun 18 Kippu will help with transportation money (so it's good I planned out what days to use it and what days to not), but generally I think I'm going to have to be very wise and cautious. I'll use the time I might normally spend shopping working on my paper instead. I don't want to disappoint anyone.

I can deal. :)

...I hope. I suppose later on, I'll post a whole "trip retrospective" and give more details on everything, but other than the fundage issue, I'm well, Bonnie's well, and so far I'm having fun. I hope I get to see the Dali exhibit tomorrow, because it's the one thing I DO want to see, regardless of funds. I already bought the Disney tickets, so I can't get out of that, but I can make sure I minimalize for everything else possible without being a stinking cheat.
azurite: (tokyo map)
In less than 10 hours, I will be on my way to Tokyo/Narita to go to Hong Kong with [ profile] baine! I'm actually pretty excited. :) Today went by really fast toward the end, but I'm glad I got so much done-- I did my laundry, cleaned up my room, finished planning the budget sheet, printed out maps and generally walked away with a feeling of accomplishment. I also ended up buying both the tickets for the Disney Tokyo resorts (Sea and Land) and Hong Kong; Bonnie'll pay me back for them, but at least we can both be confident that we won't have any problems getting into the park-- we have TICKETS, dammit. (At least, I hope that's the case that they don't oversell and expect people to be able to come back whenever; I'm sure we'll try and go to the parks at opening, so we don't have to worry about that.) Truthfully, both parks seemed pretty cheap compared to the original down in Anaheim. :P It was only $45 for the Hong Kong park, and only $80 for both Disney Sea and Disney Tokyo on the 2-Day Passport. Unfortunately, I didn't know the passport could only be used for consecutive days, so I had to change our plans from Disney on the 28th and 31st to the 30th and 31st. We're still sticking with our original plan for Hong Kong Disney on Christmas Day, though. :)

I managed to pack enough clothes for all 10 days in my duffle-wheelie, and I'm bringing my big black purse and my backpack for carry-ons. I'm also going to bring the laptop-- not that I'll have Internet access (that I know of), but I do want to try and work on all my papers... I have to at least get started on my paper for Mass Media, and of course, keep working (if possible) on my scholarship paper. Kerhoff from Criminology finally gave us (the exchange students) an assignment to determine our grade, but it's not due until 2/1... still, I'd rather get it over with sooner while the information is fresh and I'm more likely to have free time that I *should* dedicate to school (rather than websites or fanfics). And then there's culture and pop culture, both of which have papers due, but with no specific date set as of yet (as far as I know). I missed both those classes this week because I wasn't feeling well. Ironically, that wasn't the day after the party, when I had something akin to a hangover (yes, I'm pathetic).

What else? My back still hurts from all the hunching-over New Year's Cards I did, but at least I got everything mailed out- tomorrow I'll mail Scott's present + letter, but I mailed everything else (Joyce's package, Dad's package, postcard to Gary, New Year's cards to my Japanese tutors and roommates, and a card for Scott's mom) today. I'm going to look around for the game [ profile] staplerx wanted, and the doujinshi at Comiket that [ profile] richlikesmaids mentioned, plus presents for Holly, Grandpa, another, slightly-more-significant gift for Scott, doujinshi for [ profile] atlantian_magic and [ profile] guardian_kysra, and perhaps my tutors/roommates as well. After budgeting everything out, it looks like I can afford to do that, even if I weren't feeling guilty (because many of the other exchange students gave gifts to their tutors today; I didn't GET anything from my tutors except some cute cookies from Misato, but that's to be at least partly expected; people don't really do the gift-giving thing en masse here in Japan, which is VERY surprising given the amount of attention and hype Christmas gets).

I should get to bed soon so I can wake up early enough to make a hearty breakfast (gotta finish off all my milk; I already gave Holly all my eggs, but I want to drink all the milk and OJ; everything else I can freeze) and call both Mom and Scott. :)
azurite: (anzu's problems)
Ah, the luxuriousness of the relaxed weekend is almost over! ;_; Whine. And I won't even have much of a winter break, because I've got all of 2 weeks to travel around before heading BACK to school (and therefore finals), and then back to the States, and then starting school one week after that (and work one week after THAT). I look forward to the weekends SO much here in Japan. And it's funny, because that would imply that I'm really busy, but it doesn't FEEL like it. Maybe I am really busy, but things I'm doing have become so routine or mundane that I can't recall them when someone asks "So what are you up to?" or something like that.

Anyway, today I actually decided to get out of the dorms-- yesterday I felt pretty ill, and I slept most of the day, hardly ate, and kept waking up in the middle of the night. Today didn't start much better, as I woke up first with a horrible stomachache, and then a rotten headache. I slept until after 12pm, and when I finally got up, I took some Ibuprofen for my headache, had some pancakes, and decided to go to Daiso to get some CDs, DVDs, and other random necessities. My HD has been filling up pretty fast here-- mostly with pictures and music-- so I've been burning all the NANA anime and Death Note onto DVDs, along with any other movies or things I happen to score. But I need to clear out more space, as I only have a little over 2 GB free now... and this is on an 80 GB capacity drive. WTF?

I also headed to the Mito Eki area, and decided to go to Marui to see if Todd's recommendation about the menswear (as presents) was any good. They did have some cool stuff, but nothing really screamed "Scott would love this!" to me. I did swing into the Virgin Megastore (yes, I was surprised, too) and saw Mika Nakashima (aka NANA from the live-action movie)'s new single for "Hitoiro," but I didn't buy it. Her new album is coming out on the 12th, too (that would be "The End"), and it's really expensive! CDs here are such a rip-off, unless you get old, used ones from Hard Off or something... Still, I do like all the NANA music (live action and anime), so maybe I'll hunt it down eventually... it might be cheaper on!

Well so anyway, what kind of presents do you get for the man in your life? (Dad, brother, boyfriend, whoever) I've gone through countless gift guides, said no to all the usuals at the Gift Stations (ties, cufflinks, pens, etc), and am STUMPED for ideas. I just think I'm an idiot when it comes to men. (Male friends on my FL, please, feel free to disagree with me. It'll make me feel better. Of course if you don't, it won't make me feel WORSE, but obviously I would appreciate your input A LOT.)

In Virgin, I found a cool magazine oriented toward gaijin folk like myself living in Japan, and it turned out to have some pretty helpful listings of things to do and places to go. For the few days [ profile] baine and I will be in Tokyo, I know we want to spend 2 days checking out both Disney resorts, and at least some portion of a day hanging out with two other [ profile] smrffers, Kris and Fin. I don't really think we've decided on specific whens or wheres just yet, though. I do know that I'd like to go to the Ueno Royal Museum for the Dali exhibit, and probably "somewhere cool" for New Year's. Alas, all the clubs having New Year's countdowns are SO EXPENSIVE! And there are some pretty big names coming to Japan, soon (or are already here), like Muse, Eric Clapton, Foo Fighters, etc. ;_; I wish I could afford to go!

I'm thinking next weekend I have to go to Kairakuen for sure (1) just to see it, and (2) because I need to visit a local Mito temple with a "Japanese friend" and report on it for my religious studies class quiz. The following weekend, there will be not one, but TWO antique fairs in Tokyo, so I thought I might go to those, to check out and see if I could find some cool presents for my Dad and Scott. I also have a lot of space in the boxes to fill up for Joyce and for Baba and Grandpa... gah, shopping is hard!

Tomorrow after class, I can't just sleep in, either-- I have to repeat the whole post office --> bank thing, by going to the post office to make a withdrawal, and then going to the Tokyo-Mitsubishi bank to pay the balance on my IACE trip. YAY for that being almost taken care of! Then all I'll have to do is save up for the Tokyo hostel, shopping, food, and transportation in Hong Kong (I bought the JR Seishun 18 Kippu today, so travel in Tokyo is taken care of). I do have to go to Kasumi tomorrow to buy some groceries, and the other night, we went to Coco's for a vaguely expensive (but totally filling) dinner for Holly and Sokei's birthdays... so it's back to yen-pinching, if I want to have a good time. I'm dead-set on having a good time, so it's all about save save save! I would go to Kasumi tonight when I know things will be on sale, but my head is back to pounding and pounding...

I can't really remember my health ed class that well, so prepare for The Stupidest Sex Question Mer Has Ever Asked! )
azurite: (sam & max - max)
Okay, so I went to the post office right after Japanese class to try and pay for the rest of my HK trip. The postal savings ATM wouldn't let me withdraw 63,000 yen; it said "You have exceeded your credit limit." I freaked out, because I didn't know whether that meant that
a) The Postal Savings ATM only lets you make X number of withdrawals, or withdrawals up to X yen (if you're a visitor to Japan/using a foriegn bank card).
b) I had much less money than I thought (or the exchange rate made what I thought was enough money "less")
or c) WaMu put a limit on the amount of withdrawals I was allowed to make from abroad

Turns out it was the latter, as I vaguely remembered someone from WaMu telling me I had a limit of $500/day to withdraw. Now, at the time, I obviously thought "Why would I want to have $500 on me IN CASH, anyway?" Well, so I couldn't do it, but I did withdraw 32,000 yen successfully. I said bye to Holly, who was inside the post office mailing packages (turned out we'd been on the same bus on the way there), and headed toward Tokyo-Mitsubishi bank a few blocks down. It was actually a lot closer than I thought, so I don't think I'll take the bus the next time I have to go there from the post office (and I would have to go to the post office, because I already know the bank can't make withdrawals from my bank account... there's no CIRRUS symbol on the back!)

I decided I would try and remember the order/process of making a deposit (o-furikomi), but I kept encountering all these options and I had NO idea what they were or what they meant. The security guard tried to help, but he couldn't translate anything into English. One lady DID help me read the correct branch name in kanji, and eventually one of the clerks helped me through the whole process. She also helped me get a card that will expedite the process (I don't have to enter all the account information again) for the next time I go on, probably on Monday.

And I emailed Fumi, the IACE Travel representative, and she'll probably get back to me and tell me everything's fine with the transfer today, and that'll be it! As for the phone bill, I called Dad and he said I was going to get a SIZABLE Hanukkah present of cash deposited into my bank account TOMORROW. *YAY.* This will probably negate the need for me to deposit any of my future paychecks into my U.S. account, which will save money (because those kind of transfers always cost money. I didn't try to do it today at the bank, though WaMu has some sort of hook-up with Wells Fargo and Tokyo-Mitsubishi. I wonder if transferring through a bank is cheaper than through the post office? I know Golloyds or whatever is supposed to be the cheapest remittance, but I don't think I can use it or something.) So I'll be able to pay my phone bill on time, save my next two paychecks for HK and Tokyo (I need SOME money for the hostels, and of course, transportation and food in HK).

...So now I just need to build up the courage to eat FISH.

Because apparently if you don't eat pork here in Japan, or in Hong Kong, you MUST eat fish. I wonder what the percentage of vegetarians or vegans is in Asia... Probably extremely low.

I refuse to eat grasshoppers (or horse meat, or other varieties of bug), though. I don't care how delicious Kawashima-sensei says they are when they're covered in chocolate.

Also on the bright side, I might just be able to swing getting some presents for people online. I found this site that has a ton of coupon codes for all sorts of stores and websites (i.e., Best Buy, etc.), but I don't want to get all excited over it until I look through it some more. So if you see another post on it soon, it's because I've approved of it and it's cool enough for me to want to tell everyone and their dog (or cat) about! So far it's looking good, what with coupons for 1-800 Flowers (which I use often) and even some CLOTHING stores, which might help for presents for a Certain Someone Who Shall Not Be Named. I still have to mail out packages and things like that, but generally I think I'm good. Mom'll be sending me macaroni and hot chocolate, and I'm hoarding my Kasumi discount cards and buying the cheap stuff late at night to save money. Yay for 9pm Late Night Sales! Now if only I could get a Suica card to save me time and money when buying train tickets. Maybe when I get paid this Friday, I'll buy a JR Seishun 18 Kippu so on the days [ profile] baine and I are in Asakusa, I can get around easily. Unlimited travel on 5 days (doesn't need to be consecutive) during the travel period on all JR lines (shinkansen and super-express excepted), for only 11,500 yen! Not too bad, I'd say, especially considering you can spend 1/10 of that just on ONE-WAY to Tokyo from Mito (on the slow train).

Well PHOO!

Nov. 25th, 2006 04:35 am
azurite: (skip*beat kyouko)
So it's 3:37am on Saturday here, and I'm only awake because I went to bed EARLY (I was exhausted by 8:30pm) and didn't eat dinner. Later today (which feels "technically" like tomorrow), I have to go to both the Hyaku-En (aka Daiso) and Kasumi (aka Supermarket) and get some necessities, but generally speaking I'm still yen pinching. Thankfully I only have to deposit 30,000 yen by November 27, and the rest by December 5. I think I can manage that, even if (alas), there's no payday in-between now and then. I got paid today, and I went to the post office and did a transfer, but because I had no idea if a "bank code" was my routing number (which I put) or not, they have to do the slow, probably-by-mail transfer. -_- It takes a week. But I can just go to the post office again, withdraw cash from my bank account, and then fork it over to them with the IACE invoice saying "here you go, can you make this transfer for me?" No harm, no foul.

I do have a question though: for all you Mac users, is there a BitTorrent client that lets you choose WHICH files from inside a torrent that you want to download? I'm actually trying to catch up with the NANA anime, and two currently-seeding groups are doing batch downloads. Alas, my HD ran out of space at episode 10, and Tomato Torrent didn't seem to want to let me choose which files I wanted to finish downloading (11, 12, and 13). But I don't want to re-download 1-10 again (after I burned them to DVD and then deleted them from my HD)! Maybe there's something I can do in AppleScript, or should I just look for a better client? Or will that disrupt the hash, and I would have to re-download ALL of 11-13 again, even though I already have the majority of the episodes? I tried looking for individual episode downloads from the trackers, but they don't offer them anymore-- and honestly, I am a bit picky about my subtitle standards. I'd prefer Live-eviL or Ureshii, especially since they have the most seeders, too.

Does anyone want to help me with [ profile] weekly_ygo? I feel silly for asking this again, but those that volunteered before I left for Japan now have other commitments, and while I DO have regular internet access, I'm also pretty damn busy with teaching English, writing papers for all my classes, applying to SDSU, and so on. So I could use a helping hand, even if it's just someone who browses [ profile] playthedamncard for updates and emails them to me. I MIGHT be able to handle the rest, but I thought I would ask anyone who has a free hour or two each week if they can help out. I will also be out of town (i.e. out of Japan/away from Internet) from Dec. 23-Jan. 2, which means I'll ESPECIALLY need help during that time, unless I put the community on suspension and resume when I have time. Demoerin said she can return in February, which is most likely true for me as well... but if anyone can help, please, please speak up!
azurite: (anzu's problems)
You can't spell "distressed" without "stressed." And I was just as equally tempted to pick "depressed" for my mood, because I'm not HAPPY, that's for damn sure.

Yesterday I thought I'd gotten the whole SDSU application out of my way, but Scott (he did a good thing) went to SDSU and talked to a bunch of people, and they said that I might not even need to "transfer," per se, so much as "visit" SDSU, while still taking classes as if they were from/at CSUN. That means my degree would still say "CSUN" on it. Regardless though, I have to get access to and fill out the Supplementary Application re: my grades, even though my grades won't be official until several weeks into the Spring 2007 semester (at least), because I don't get back until A WEEK before that new semester starts. Plus, I would have to clear with various department chairs about whether the classes they offer at SDSU could be considered equivalent to the ones at CSUN for my major/minors, so as not having to take classes OVER again at SDSU, because SDSU doesn't "officially" consider them equivalent. They have ECON 161 and POLS 155 as pre-reqs for even ENTERING the journalism program at SDSU, but because they're lower div and I've taken so many other journalism classes at CSUN, Scott and I are hoping that I won't need to take those, and I can still get into SDSU's IMPACTED Journalism program with the classes I have.

Oh yea, and then there's the FAFSA. -_- Seriously, I'm beginning to HATE January.

I suppose my day's Tarot is kind of ironic, then... The Seven of Chalices )

My horoscope for today: You're in pursuit of excitement and fresh adventure. Try a different path to get your life going in a whole new direction. Daring sports and physical activities get your blood racing and stimulate your mind, too.

Then it makes sense that I went to the gym during 4th period. I even tried out some machines I thought I would never use, and even if I'm the only girl in the group that would be there (assuming I would ever go with the guys; since we have such different schedules, it's actually kind of unlikely; the gym also closes at 7pm), I think it would be good for me... I don't need to get into testosterone comparison contests like the boys. It's very different from an American gym, but it'll give me something to do, and I can "stay fit" and shape up... and if the endorphins really do perk me up and inspire me, all the better.

The main portion of today's concern was about the trip (to Hong Kong) that [ profile] baine and I are taking on 23 Dec. The best things in life are free... but you can keep them for the birds and bees, give me MONEY! )

But that's okay, I don't eat much, anyway! It's better to cut back on my daily Coca-Cola, and spend more time here at the dorms getting things cleaned up and done. Like my scholarship paper. *sigh* Or my paper for Pop Culture. Or my Religious Studies test. (and before I leave, a Mass Media paper, a Modern Culture paper, and a Popular Culture/Image of the Japanese in American Media paper. Oy VEY!)

If it's not one thing, it's always another.

Like my new $121 phone bill. I'm going to wait to hear from T-Mobile about what the hell's up with that THIS time, to see if the charges are legit. Even if they are, I don't have to pay until December 10th, which gives me enough time to get paid (3x) and deposit said money by wire into my bank account, and pay that way. I refuse to have mom pay for my phone bill any more than she has already. But I'm probably going to cancel my $14.99 Unlimited Text Messages (I would have to send 150 text messages a month for that to pay for itself, anyway, and I haven't even sent 85 since I've been in Japan), my Web Access (useless, anyway), and whatever other useless things I might be paying for.

Money stresses me out quite easily, and my brain deals with it by having dreams about Christian Bale doing my dishes (the night before last) or going to strange reunions/graduations where friend's boyfriends are suddenly gay and dating angry, fat white guys and where conveyer belts look like they're made of stone and have water bubbling up from the cracks.

Yeah, I think I need to sleep now, too.


Aug. 24th, 2006 01:43 pm
azurite: Part of the "What Doesn't Kill You" series of fanfic icons (wdky3)
Well, so we didn't have KFC like I was hoping for the ITR Helpdesk's end-of-summer/goodbye (to me for now) party, but the pizza isn't bad. It's veggie from Costco, and at least we have some cans of Coke. :) I wasn't really in the mood for pizza, so I'm just nibbling on it slowly.

I "won" a prize from a raffle we had-- I got a 2006 calendar of kittens... I guess I'll use it up, and then use the earlier months for posters or something. Maybe I can scrapbook with them, since they're a bit small.

PLUS... ^_^ One of my wonderfully nice co-workers hooked me up with Windows XP Pro with the staff/faculty discount (only $12), but he gave it to me AS A GIFT. WHOO! Big with the yay. The only thing that can make today better is if I get my financial aid check. (Please Goddess, PLEEEEEEEEEEEEEASE!)

Yesterday I got my Joytech 8" LCD Playstation 2 screen-- it mounted onto my slimline PS2 with ease (you only need a penny to screw the mounts into place). All you have to do is plug in the AC Adapter or included car adapter (alas! I probably won't be able to use it on a plane, unless there's a PS2 battery adapter or sockets on the plane), add your usual PS2 accessories (memory card, controller, game disk) and off you go! I played Katamari Damacy 2 (We <3 Katamari) for a few hours like that-- still a couple of "levels" I can't beat, but I'm having a blast trying.

I managed to get 2 boxes into my closet, and several of my books arranged on the top shelf, but they keep leaning on either side; I don't have bookends strong enough to support the weight of all my books. So pretty much, I've got to stack the shelf from end to end and find a way to make the left end not fall and cause a disaster. The rest of my room is still a mess, so I hope I can get that dealt with tonight. :D

For anyone curious or traveling soon, here's the complete list of things permitted and prohibited by the TSA on aircraft flying to/from the United States these days, regardless of origin/destination. The alert level from flights to/from the U.K. is still Severe/Red, but other flights are at High/Orange, and the general country alert remains at Elevated/Yellow.

Since I'm online, I wanna deal with as many mod-hand overs as I can; I'll be changing over the I Give Up!/I'm Finished page to the new [ profile] 30kisses_mod account, emailing Svelte and DQBunny re: the Hall of Fame access, and any other similar things I can think of.

*yawn* So much to do... At least I finished WDKY24; it's up for beta-editing over at [ profile] betasquad. Please give it a look see, or email me if you're interested. Super-major-gigante thanks to [ profile] winterwing3000 for all the help with it; thanks to her brainstorm sessions with me, I was able to breeze through the missing scenes, and I got some great ideas for WDKY25, as well. :)
azurite: (purple nails jewels)
Tagged by [ profile] obabscribbler

The Rules:
List six (6) things about yourself.
Tag six (6) people, no tagging back

1. Sometimes I doubt the fact that I'll come back to live in the United States and settle down one day. I take a lot of things for granted because of where I live, but I don't feel particularly drawn to any one place in the U.S., and global affairs at the moment has me thinking I'd like to live somewhere else for the rest of my life. But who knows where?

2. Anyone who wants to know how or why I got into fandom has only to construe a situation from these words: sister, computer, sticker, television. Actually, the story goes that my (now-late) older sister Michelle wanted me to stop annoying her (to use our new computer, an IBM Aptiva), so she gave me a sticker of the SD Sailor Senshi (from Sailor Moon SuperS, which was on Japanese TV at the time). She told me the show was on TV, ushered me off to the living room, and I've been a fandomite (fangirl? Nah, that no longer has a positive connotation) ever since.

3. Part of the reason why I have a hard time connecting firmly with any religion is because I'm very flighty. Yet there are some things I've maintained a die-hard interest in for years, or things that might be seen as non-religious that I simply have a knack for-- things like tarot, palm reading, and astrology. So there's another option if I fail at life with my Journalism degree-- dress in a glittery sweeping robes and become a casino psychic. ^_~

4. Purple is my favorite color. I think it started when I read the "Unicorns" series -the one starring the same girls from Sweet Valley High. Purple and silver were their colors, and after I found out the origins of the color (i.e. of indigo dye, and of extracting color from oysters), I started to love it. I think my favorite color before that was red. I don't think I've ever really liked green, yellow, or orange, though. And short of a very rich emerald green or an icy yellow, I don't look good wearing those colors, either. I suppose that explains why I really like Sailor Mars and Sailor Pluto- they both have those rich, dark colors on their sailor fuku. I like Sailor Saturn's fuku and powers, but I'm not a big fan of her "character." Then again, she doesn't get much screentime.

5. In my life, I can remember all the careers (serious ones) that I've ever wanted: teacher, artist, fashion designer, writer, journalist. Now I suppose I want to mash them all together, because I'd love to be a writer for a fashion magazine. But I'd also like to teach English as a foriegn language, especially in Japan. And I'm still very much into color, cosmetics, and fashion, though I don't have the attitude to keep up with the fashionistas of the world.

6. Despite many people thinking I'm outgoing, bold, and adventurous, a lot of the time I'm scared, nervous, or shy about things. For certain things, I'm very set in my ways-- like food. If I have a dish that I know I like and enjoy, why would I bother trying something new? This probably explains why, when I try to eat other foods, I get a stomachache, because my stomach acts on what my conscience thinks should happen as a result of me rebelling -oh no, don't eat that, it'll make you feel sick, it's not your usual, why did you try that, it's all (this) or (that) or (the other thing)! Eew, go back to your regular (insert food here)! I really have to get over that psychological bent I have.

Sooooo, Arizona for Spring Break '07 (April 2-7th), huh? Stalk me some [ profile] dqbunny, [ profile] seeshellirun, [ profile] kitesareevil and... o_O Wow, who else lives out there? I mean besides my cousin who's going to University there? That sounds kind of interesting. What's in Arizona (i.e attractions)?

1 - [ profile] dqbunny
2 - [ profile] seeshellirun
3 - [ profile] kitesareevil
4 - [ profile] rhapsody_dragon
5 - [ profile] mklutz
6 - [ profile] winterwing3000

What's a Hedge Fund Manager? )
azurite: (rena)
It's hard to look forward to flying with terrorists running amok, a bazillion things apparently getting forbidden by the TSA, and United Airlines in general just SUCKING. But hopefully they can make it up to me, because they gave me a $100 online certificate. Problem is, I have to redeem it (that is, book travel) by Jan 31, 2007. I can travel anytime from Jan 1, 2006 until Jan 31, 2008. I'm thinking I should probably use the $100 for Spring Break '07, even though it isn't during my birthday (boo!).

But where to go? Who to visit?

Any ideas?
azurite: (indiana ed (fma))
[ profile] ceruleansan, I hope you know this is ALL YOUR FAULT. YOU STARTED IT!
And if I get plotbunnied and start writing Fullmetal Alchemist fanfiction, I KNOW WHO I'M COMING AFTER TO BETA MY FICS! *angry stare*

Yeah, so I've kind of gotten, er... well, let's use a light form of "obsessed," shall we? Interested in the FMA series. CeruleanSan had me downloading scanlations from StopTazmo, and I've managed to get up to Chapter 20 or thereabouts. She wanted a new convert to the whole Ed x Winry pairing, and I'm so far inclined to agree with her-- a bit. There really isn't a whole ton of romance or innuendo, or backstory beyond how Ed and Al got to where they are.

I admit- parts of the manga are extremely funny, but I don't think ANY manga has ever had me crying so much within a few chapters. Yu-Gi-Oh only brought me to tears when I realized IT WAS OVER, not at any point during the first arc. Even Sailormoon, with the DEATH! and the TRAGIC!OMG etc... even in the live-action, it was always toward the END that I was sobbing like a baby. And okay, FMA didn't have me sobbing like a baby, but the sad parts (people getting murdered, kittens being dead, etc.) had me sniffling and wishing I could click away-- but I couldn't. :P

So I download about 3 chapters at a time while doing something else online. I read them all once they've finished downloading, and once I get 700 MB worth (which may take awhile; I've got something like 97 MB now, and that's *20* chapters!), I'll burn it to CD.

Sucky thing is that the quality really went down around Ch. 18. I don't mean the manga or even the scans- just the translating. All of a sudden, words were horribly misspelled, apostrophes and commas were left out, and chapter titles weren't translated at all anymore. Some omake bits and cover scans were left out altogether! It was kinda sad. If anyone knows where the HQ scans are, I'll wait longer-- just so I can read scanlations in REAL English, not that kindergarten crap that passes for English these days. (I like "Engrish," but there's no humor in stuff that's halfway between Engrish and English. It's called LAZINESS.)

UGH! One more week until I get paid, two more weeks until "finals" (I actually don't have finals for all of my classes. I do have tons of WORK to get done, especially by the end of this week, so I better get cracking.), and three weeks until FANIME! I still haven't reserved a shuttle to the airport and back again though, and Mom hasn't paid me or covered any portion of the hotel room yet. I should call her about that (well, she DID offer! It'll shave some off the money she still owes me, at any rate). At least I'll have April's paycheck (or will it be May's?) to cover Fanime and the like, and I'll be making MORE money in the summer, assuming I get more hours (which I hope I do).

Ooh, and for Mother's Day weekend, I'm going to San Diego on the choo-choo! :D I'm going to make Scott's mom a card, because even if I don't see her, she's been way nice to me. I know I'm going to see Scott at least on Friday night/Saturday morning, so he can pass the card on. I think I'll be at Joyce's for Sunday, but I don't know what exactly we're doing. (I hope Joyce wins her court case today against the insurance guys, because it'd be sucky for her and Baba to try and celebrate Mother's Day if she DIDN'T win.)

More FFX-2 and Da Vinci Code Quest schtuff )

Meme ga aru! )

Ugh, still need a new LJ layout (got sick of the Lisa Frank kitties). DAMN YOU MUSE! Where ARE you!?
azurite: (indiana ed (fma))
So if it was "Miss Independent" running around in my head before (a total Mai x Jounouchi song if there ever was one), now it's "Just Missed the Train," which has inspired me for something for [ profile] 30kisses, particularly theme #25: fence. It's annoying though, because like I mentioned before, I have all those other 30kisses submissions sitting on my computer at home, they're just unfinished because I can't think of how to end them... well, except for Kaiba the Virgin Sacrifice, but I have to be in the right frame of mind to sit down and write that without turning into some sort of tomato!

I'll get around to writing it later, maybe at work. I have my flash drive with me, so I can save it on there and not worry about it.

So, why are all the weird people on MySpace? I mean, there are non-weird people on there, but today I just got a message from someone who says he and his girlfriend are interested in trying out a threesome, and if I'm interested... My face goes: o_O; (okay, I'm totally NOT pulling an Usagi Kou here and taping an emoticon to my face. But you get the picture). Does anybody READ the profiles on MySpace? I'm "in a relationship" or whatever the hell you wanna call it, and even though I'm bi, I won't just hop into a bed with 2 people I don't know and trust because THEY need to add some spice in their love life!

o_o; Geez.

In other news, I'm going to San Diego this weekend. I know my last Amtrak adventure was harrowing (very late trains and the like), but I'm going to hope that it was just a one-shot thing... in any case, my train leaves Chatsworth around 8:40pm or so on Friday night, so I can either ask Zack to take me there straight after work, or I can go home with my grandparents and let them take me. Last time I liked having them there, because the train was very late, and it was extremely cold out. I liked being able to get in the car and warm up while I waited for the train. Chatsworth is an outdoors station, and it's the porn capital of the world, so creepy people are always lurking about...

I'm going because this weekend and next weekend are mine and Scott's only chances to see each other before he goes to Belize and I go to Hawaii. It feels like we've been seeing each other often, but realistically, it's only a few times each month. After living with him for so long, I never thought I'd be able to survive not seeing him for such a long stretch of time, but I'm managing. I have moments when I really wish he was with me, but for now, things are okay. I only hope that wherever life takes him, I can be with him sooner rather than later. :)

And now for more crazy stuff: I have to finish my Gilman application, the Bridging scholarship application, and now I have to send a Financial Aid Award letter (via fax) to the NSEP people in Washington. Which means I have to pressure mom a bit more (already talked to her last night) about the letter of Dependent Verification (which I sent out this morning) which she has to mail back to me with a copy of both mine and her tax returns (she'll do it electronically for me, and have the gov't deposit it automatically in my bank account. Sweet!). I won't be able to get that Award letter until I give all the stuff from mom to school... probably. I should check with them anyway. In any case, the stuff for school is due within 3 weeks, and the award letter I have to fax to NSEP is due by the 31st. YIPES!

What else? I worked a lot on WDKY24 last night; I kind of got inspired for this particular scene that is essentially dropping a big piece of sticky candy in the middle of an anthill. I'm eager to see if anyone will pick up on it (call it a "hidden" piece of candy). Still Anubis' backstory is a tough thing to tackle, but with Kysra's help and some good research, I think I can make this work relatively "realistically" (for the WDKYverse, anyway).

I also FINALLY managed to get the style I got from [ profile] _premadelayouts to work for my Friends' page, but many things are still out of place, and I'm not sure how to rearrange them so they ARE in place. Is there a way I can make that style public so other people can go "oh, you have your %%blahblah%% variable in the wrong place, which is why your username is way off to the right, and your entries are all indented 20 pixels"? (Also, think anyone can help me with that?)

I got a $20 Amazon certificate from after a survey I took, which is nice. I thought I wouldn't get it, since I'm not a business major (and that was what the survey was about), but I still did, so I'm getting the last 3 books in the Mediator series by Meg Cabot, and a book in the Elements of Fiction Writing series (which I'm sorta re-reading at the moment) called Description. I was thinking about buying all the Princess Diaries books I'm missing (Volumes 4-7, including the 4.5 "Princess Project"), but I decided against it-- there's so many, and Amazon sure made it confusing by offering the British versions, too! @_@

AAAAAAAAAND I got Volume 2 of Yu-Gi-Oh! R in the mail from Sagusa Books. How come I've never heard of them before? They're great! :D I realize Jenniyah is already scanlating (crappily, but still scanlating) YGO!R, so [ profile] souten_scans won't be taking that on in the forseeable future. But I'm still waiting on [ profile] dm_san to get back to me with whether or not our groups will work together for the scanlations of the Gospel of Truth, since she already has very HQ scans that would save us a lot of time and unnecessary effort.

I'm getting my hair done tomorrow-- a partial weave of highlights (as suggested! ^_~), I still need a wireless card, to do some cleaning, and now catch up on reading for Women Writers of Asia, because if I post *something* on the short story we were supposed to have read by yesterday, it's better than nothing. I also have to revise my English essay and try and get it to my professor before 7pm tonight. So much to do, and yet... I'm not too stressed. Let's just see if I can remember it all!
azurite: (tresmoron - Anzu's Determined)
Though 9am is hardly early, and 10am isn't exactly the earliest morning class I've ever had, something tells me I'm going to be exhausted when I wake up later... today. I haven't gone to bed yet because various things (finding the cheapest price for legit copies of Creative Suite 2 and Studio MX 2004 or Studio 8; downloading Google Talk and talking to [ profile] staplerx; finding out ANY info about Comiket Dec. 2005) have kept me distracted. Oh yeah, and "Secret Indulgences," an updated chapter to an amusing SxA fic I'm reading.

Today, I learned there is someone at my work I hate. Well, dislike. "Hate" is such a strong word, hm? *tight smile* We shall call her K, but don't mistake her for the super-nice K I actually kind of LIKED over at #111, the one who goes to CSUN (though I haven't seen her yet). This K is BOSSY, CONDESCENDING, and FAT. The fat part doesn't matter to me at all, except when we have such limited space in the store as it is, and she rams me all the time with her giant ass. And sorry is supposed to make the bruise on my abdomen go away? -_- Grr.

I've also been thinking about going legit with my laptop, since Windows Vista (out in Fall 2006) is supposed to be the uber-checker for all things pirated. So I could shell out $249 for Studio 8 if I buy within the next week or so (then it goes up to $299), $359 for Creative Suite 2, and the $180ish dollars I've already planned to shell out on XP Pro and Office 2003 Student Edition. The question is, is it worth it? I have CS1 and Studio MX (Dreameaver is 2004) on this computer, and I could just copy them onto a CD and install them there. But... >_> I don't know, someone convince me either way. I can blow a lot of money and feel good about it being legal and all, or I could just copy and paste what I have here, making do with what I have and saving that money for another trip to Japan.

And truthfully, I don't even use ALL the software in either of those packages. I use Photoshop and Dreamweaver the most, but I'm one of those types that sees it as good to have the whole package, especially where the CS2 package is involved. Someday, I'd like to know how to work GoLive and InDesign. And I know SOME Flash, but not enough to get by. So... where to stand, what to do?

If I did save the money, it would hopefully go toward going to Tokyo in December for New Year's and Comiket Winter 2005 (which is Comiket 69. Hehe). True, I was freezing enough as it was LAST time (in March), but a) Winter is my favorite season; b) I have experience, and could thus be prepared; c) There MIGHT be another Pop Japan Travel tour, which would save effort on my part for a lot... i.e. food, lodging expenses, JR Rail Pass) and probably a bunch I'm not thinking of. But I would like to do Tokyo on my own too-- maybe with some friends. Anyone interested? "Wanna buy wanna buy wanna buy... a Rayearth doujinshi?"

Creative Writing teacher-- well, he looks a bit like those statues on Easter Island, except he's Latino-looking (or is Latino, maybe? His last name is Lopez). He doesn't seem too evil or too friendly either way, so I guess I'll have to wait and see. One of my classmates totally legitimized fanfiction though, so I'll have at least ONE person to talk to! ^_^;

Did I neglect to mention earlier (yesterday) that Scott had to do an introduction today in Japanese, and... once again, he didn't get it. :P I'm sure he studies really well on his own (I'm positive he's already got several hiragana down. If he hasn't memorized them or how to say them, at least he knows how to write them!) but in a classroom environment, I guess things change. And I was so self-conscious today, I screwed up a few times too! I get all talkative and red-faced when I'm nervous... then again, I also didn't have breakfast, so I was running on fumes.

After Japanese, Scott and I hung out at the Matador Complex, where I had a bagel from the Freudian Sip (it's no Western Bagel, let me tell you that. I couldn't finish it, but I didn't throw it away) and some chocolate milk-- my new addiction. It's better than iced tea, right? So Scott finally found a place near this private elementary school, near Sherman Way. He says it's a nice place and all, and he's planning to officially move in with this co-worker and former CSUN Art student friend of his, Marlene. Yes, it's a girl, but whatever, I can't be bothered by it. I am so not the girlfriend anymore!

After CW class (we got out early) I headed to the Career Center, found out CSUN's no longer using MonsterTrak, and so I registered for their new service through their website, called Simplicity. Not that I need or even can work a job right now (no car, so it has to be local), but I thought I'd just get prepped for it. Come October, I want to land that job at Red Robin, anyway.

Anyway, Scott was going to come over tonight and try to take apart his desk, but he decided he needed tools, so he went to visit Brett and Derek in Burbank. Since I couldn't get a ride home from him after I went to work (they surprised me with a 4hr:45min shift today, which got my jeans soaking wet and covered in something slimy), I called Grandpa, and... here I am.

I watched "Prince Charming" this sappy take on the "Frog Prince" story, on the Hallmark Channel. Christina Applegate actually looked quite cool in that, and Bernadette Peters is always one of my favorites (I was an "Into the Woods" fangirl). Alas, no one falls in love in 5 days, let alone gets married. No one with real smarts and common sense in today's world mind you. >_> Maybe 1 in a million.

*yawn* Anyway, regardless of 8 hours of sleep being enough, I am sore and tired, so I might as well sleep. Tomorrow will probably be the longest day ever, especially if Salido decides to keep us for all 3 hours of our night class! X_X
azurite: (Default)
Last year in my psychopathic math class, one of my "friends" (who annoyed me sometimes, but was equivalent to a Jigglypuff in terms of attitude) told me about a "field trip" known as the Sojurn to the Past. It wasn't until today that I really got interested in the trip. It's a 10 day trip, with only four schools going. My school is the only one from San Francisco able to go--the others are from Sunnyvale, Oakland, and Fremont. I really want to take the opportunity, but I feel out of place already.

First off, I'll say that it sounds like an incredible opportunity, and I believe the speaker and my friends when they say it will change your life.

You spend 10 days in the Deep South (of the United States) learning about the Civil Rights Movement. Why would I feel out of place? I mean, everyone wants to learn, right?

One thing I feel I should mention is that I am not proud at all of my heritage. I'm what I refer to as a Euro-Mutt, a mix of Western European cultures. I'm both German and Israeli, French and Welsh, Dutch and Danish. I used to consider myself Jewish, but when I was told I had to go to a Hebrew school, get a bat mitzvah, and quit my high school-- not to mention the fact that my mother was not Jewish, I strayed from that path. I celebrate Christmas, but on the same level as Bart Simpson-- for family get-togethers and plenty of gifts. Food is always a great bonus, too. But basically, the history of all my cultures is a war-ravaged, racist, prejudiced one.

Believe it or not, a white guy-- and I state here, I'm stark white too-- called me a "whitey". I don't get that. People complain that others act "ghetto." I'm big on individuality. I say that when you act like someone else, the person you really are is shoved aside. It's NOT you, which makes you deceitful. Why would you want to do that? You don't really gain anything in the long run.

So I'd feel out of place on this because, while I do consider myself outspoken and all for the rights of the individual, I know that there's just so much that one person can't do alone. Trying to get others to help you and believe in what you say isn't easy, especially when so many are intent on falling back on religion, or history.

But that's what this trip is all about. I don't want to be outcast. Ironic, don't you think?
It's expensive, but I want to go. I think I know why, but I'm not sure. I love to travel, but are my reasons sound? I really don't know. I seem to be confused quite a lot these days.


Sep. 4th, 2001 02:56 pm
azurite: (pgsm senshi)
Over Labor Day Weekend, I went to Lake Tahoe in the very northern part of California. WOW. Being a city-semi-country girl, I was amazed at all the wilderness. Vast expanses of trees in every direction, and water, water, everywhere!

I stayed in a real log cabin-- there were even antiques like fire-blower accordions, and old 50s stoves. Staying there for three days made me realize just how much I take for granted-- how much the future today depends on the history of yesterday. And how glad I am that people sacrificed their time, money, and often lives so we could get this far.

Excuse me for being all sappy, but when someone tells you not to take something for granted, do it. I mean, where would we be without Internet? Or electricity at all? How bored would we be without radios and CDs, or sites to check out?

What kind of country would be living in if we hadn't won World War II, or gotten out of the Civil War era? What if we were still stuck in the Great Depression, or the 70s? I mean, some eras are infinitely worse than others, but you kinda have to look back in the past and admire those people-- for their ingenuity, bravery... and of course, all their faults that got them into the situation in the first place.

People like them watched the country grow and become a beautiful place that people want to visit, and stay in, and grow up in.

Already, I've decided I don't want to leave California for college. I've got so many choices, and sometimes, I'm not even sure what I want to major or minor in, but I love this state. I love San Francisco. Maybe I'll stay up north here in CA, but then again, maybe I'll go to CSUN near my grandparents. Or UCLA in the center of it all. I want to treasure this place I live in, and my friends that I was lucky and blessed enough to meet here, and my family that was smart enough to come here.

Call me a dork, but I really appreciate this country, even if it has politicians and lawyers. ^.~

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