Sunday, December 30, 2007
Friday, December 28, 2007
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
But this list. This list bothers me. It's like "holy crap. I am getting old." I know 32 isn't old but now... the things that shaped my life and were SO IMPORTANT to a 15 - 19 year old girl are just trivia. Some realizations...
- Titanic came out 10 years ago. Damn. You know, I don't remember if I saw it in the theater. I think I did. I remember being on my first trip to Denver and with a group of people and trying to go see it but it was sold out every show they were willing to sell tickets for.
- James Hetfield of Metallica now has grey hair.
- Vanilla Ice is still teh ghey. And I still know most of the words to Ice Ice Baby. That's just sad. And still mumble alot of MMMBop.
- Speaking of, the Hanson kids are married?! With kids?! And MMMBop was 10 years ago. Crap.
- TLC's "Waterfalls" was the song I remember hearing after I was told a guy who I grew up with shot and killed himself. He was the bully across the street. I couldn't really feel bad. I tried but I didn't. I did milk that little tidbit of information for some sympathy.
- I have vivid memories of going into the Student Center at Belmont and watching "Nuthin' but a G thang" and "California Love." I love the latter. It is one of my favorite songs. That whole Mad Max themed video is great.
- Alot of the follow-ups with the artists... they are now older and fat. And in the case of Britney Spears - crazy, too.
- Nine Inch Nails should have been on that list. It made the 50 that didn't make the top 100 along with Gin and Juice, Nookie, and Been Caught Stealing. I first heard "Closer" as the opening song in Seven. I went to see that movie with French (one of my philosophy professors. I saw her recently on the History Channel talking about ancient Grecian warfare. Coolest woman ever. She should have been a Greek goddess. She looked like one... and should have been on Broadway instead of talking about Charles Pierce), Jeb, and someone else. I don't remember. I do remember they were mad at me for choosing Seven since it scared everyone so badly. And thus began my love affair with scary, tripped out horror flicks.
- I don't get REM, Pearl Jam or Nirvana....
- 90's fashion was really really bad. From Hammer Pants to Grunge in the space of 3 years... (1990-1993). Yuck.
- U2's "One" makes me want to do that worship CCM pose... drop to my knees and throw my arms out to the side and belt it out at the top of my lungs.
Sunday, December 23, 2007
“Eric Volz was released from a Nicaraguan prison hospital earlier today (12/21) and will be in hiding, due to reports of threats against him.
We have reason to believe he is being followed and are taking every precaution to assure his safety.
Our family is overwhelmed by the incredible outpouring of support of Eric’s innocence over the past year. In the center of an impossible situation, we have experienced the most abundant love from friends and total strangers, and we thank you.
We are grateful to the courageous individuals in the Nicaraguan government who fought for truth and justice to prevail in this case as well to those in the US government who provided assistance in securing Eric’s release.
This ordeal has taken an incredible physical and emotional toll on all of us, especially Eric. We thank you in advance for respecting our privacy and allowing our family to recover.”
Thursday, December 20, 2007
We are asking everyone to contact (a phone call would be more immediate, but follow up with an email if you can!) their elected representatives in the next few hours, to ask them to pressure the Nicaraguan government to carry out Eric's legal release from prison. The reason this is so urgent is that Nicaraguan government offices leave tomorrow for the lengthy holidays... we need the US government to act IMMEDIATELY to compel the Nicaraguan government to honor their own law and release Eric Volz!
Call your representative with the question "What is being done to expedite Eric Volz's release from Nicaraguan custody?"
READ THIS: Associated Press story: http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5jGlrnMklKMa1DSqmiTxcJLaMvRhwD8TKU66O1
TAKE ACTION: Here's how to locate your representatives:
State Department: http://contact-us.state.gov/cgi-bin/state.cfg/php/enduser/std_alp.php or main switchboard:
: http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/ or main switchboard:
Click on the above link and locate your two State Senators
Click on the above link and locate your Congressional Representatives
Details are changing almost hourly, but here's what we know as of 10:30am Central, December 20th:
Judge Ivette Toruno, who initially convicted Eric for Doris' murder, is required to sign his release papers, but she has created various excuses to avoid doing so.
In the meantime, the original prosecutor of Eric's case (Isolda Ibarra) is attempting to overturn the Appellate Court ruling, and is filing an appeal to the Nicaraguan . She is asking that Eric be held in custody (illegally) until the Supreme Court rules. Typically, Supreme Court cases take years to process.
Nicaraguan law says that the order of the Appellate Court to free Eric should not be overridden by the filing of a Supreme Court appeal, but that Nicaraguan law is being ignored.
If Eric is held, he will certainly be moved back to the penitentiary, and may not be afforded even the minimal protection he had previously - he will be in the gravest of danger. Eric has kidney stones, and is still recovering from intestinal issues and severe asthma, which is why he has been in the prison hospital for more than 2 months now.
This morning, Penitentiary Director Molina dispatched a truck to take Eric back to the prison. This forced his visit with his mother Maggie to be cut short, due to security concerns.
- via Eric Volz google group
Monday, December 17, 2007
Merry Christmas to Maggie and Dane Anthony! I'm so happy on their behalf I can hardly contain myself. Praise God for answer to many, many prayers.
UPDATE (from the Eric Volz group on Google):
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Me, Ted (back), Cindy (who won the costume contest as Cleopatra), and Jamie (who borrowed and ROCKED one of my costumes.
Did you get the joke that is my costume yet?
Friday, November 30, 2007
It will be on PBS in January/February 2008. Be sure to watch it. I'm in the audience.
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Under a TSA proposal published in August, airlines and travel agents would be required to ask people reserving flights for their birth date, gender and full name. Travelers, however, would not be required to give the new information.
People who don't comply could be more easily mistaken for a terrorist and "may be more likely to experience delays, be subjected to additional screening (or) be denied transport," the TSA wrote.
If you don't tell us what we want to know, we will detain you... because we can. You must comply. Resistance is futile.
I hate the government. It's all about power, control, and submission. I think I'm in the mood to watch Serenity and V for Vendetta tonight. Too bad showcase practice is in the way. Dangit.
To further irritate me, I just received an email about mandatory recycling training - to be sure I put the right crap in the right bin lest BigUniversity get fined for plastic straws in the plastics bin... Ugh. I may burn some tires in protest.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
There were 3 other people in the elevator. One was a little old woman, a man probably just a little older than me, and myself. I was the only one to say anything to them and that was after I got out of the elevator. Why wasn't that man saying anything?!
Yeah - they were drunk and would have no sense of social shame but we need to smack these people down for the common good. I'm sure they are no better when they are sober. There is a reason to have confrontation.
I hope you lose this weekend to Michigan because your fans are bigger douches than UT fans (no offense to Big Orange Michael but seriously, there are some giant douches if you go to Knoxville for the game). Then again, I'm sure every team has their share of douches.
How did this sudden hatred for Ohio State come about? I am here in Columbus for the Ohio Star Ball. So far, it has been absolutely lovely. I get on the elevator to go to my room with a pair of already drunk a$$hats who curse, yell loudly into their bluetooth headsets, and hit on this woman standing waiting for an elevator on the 9th floor. She nearly ran into another car. I swear, if my back had been to them instead of to the wall, they would have groped me. One kept touching my elbow.
When I got off the elevator, he yelled something about me being sexy (intended as an insult). I called him a name or two and went onto my room. I know, it isn't the Christian thing for me to respond in that way, but since I wasn't allowed to bring firearms with me on this trip, I have to defend myself some how.
Because they are the reason why "he needed killin' " is a perfectly acceptable defense for murder.
Again, I hope you lose big to Michigan. And douches, you got NO game. I don't know what woman who wasn't crazy or drunk would even want to give you the time of day let alone uh.. flirt with you. I hope you leave frustrated sexually and with your team. You deserve it.
Friday, October 26, 2007
2) My MacBook Pro, its external drive (my iPod and iPhone are always in my purse)
4) The Still in the Box Darth Vader
5) The "Seize the Day" birthday card from my dad
6) The Sig Sauer, the other Smith and Wessons and ammunition
If time permits:
My baby photo album, the SHAG print of the Tea Cup Ride at Disney Land, Melodia Pants, and Ballroom Dance dresses (my shoes are already in the car in the car)
What to Save From a Fire - TIME
Monday, October 15, 2007
Amway/Quixtar... good luck with that.
On a somewhat related note, Mark told me that there are some scuzzy lawyers who are now putting copyright notices on their cease and desist letters to keep people from scanning them and putting on their blogs for the whole world to see that they are scuzzy lawyers.
Ugh. Fail. Once it is sent to you, it is your property. If you don't want it posted, don't send it. Just the same as you should always check the "to:" field in your email program to be sure that you didn't copy the entire address book when you were whining about how you had nothing to do.
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Uh... der... Ron Paul was my number one choice by a long shot. John Edwards is the candidate at the bottom.
Enjoy! Results may not be entirely accurate for you. For entertainment purposes only... and maybe get you to think or something.
Friday, September 21, 2007
Monday, September 10, 2007
OK, that isn't the same as the hidden affairs, bad finances, crumbling marriages but secrets start somewhere.
If heading to church is just too much or too far away, check out the blog. Honesty is a good thing. Bring it out into the open.
Sunday, September 09, 2007
You just need to watch because Shalene is everything I want to be in a ballroom dancer. This was their showdance from Ohio Star Ball 2006. It was their official retirement dance (though there was 1 more dance in the competition). And she is in near tears at the end. When I saw the debut at the studio, I was just sobbing. I'm all choked up right now. Talk amongst yourselves. The Holy Roman Empire was neither holy, Roman or an Empire. Discuss.
Friday, September 07, 2007
And those of us who bought them earlier - even back to iPhone Day - are getting a $100 Apple store credit.
I certainly didn't expect them to do anything for the early adopters because one has to decide where jump on the bandwagon because there is always something better, faster, smaller, cheaper in the pipeline. It isn't a matter of being punished for being first. My iPhone has done everything I wanted it to do and more. I'm very happy with it and what I paid for it. But yep... that store credit will be put to good use. New iPod? Leopard? AppleTV? So many choices!!! Curse you Steve Jobs for making my decision difficult!
Anyway, I don't think that Palm, Dell, Microsoft, or any of the other big companies (including the game console manufacturers) would do the same thing. If they did, I might have missed it because... well, there is only Apple in PK's world.
Monday, August 20, 2007
Let me say that again. $9!!!!!! For the mid-afternoon!
I was planning on making a trip to see 3:10 to Yuma (hello - Christian Bale and Russell Crowe) when it comes out soon but yeah. I'll just wait. I'm not all about paying to see something in the theater that is more than a third of my Netflix membership. There just isn't anything that I'm going to really lose experience wise on my plasma TV and surround sound.
Suck it, movie theaters.
Thursday, August 16, 2007
(not my photoshop by the way. Kudos to whoever did it)
Hurricane Dean announces that its gonna gain strength, then it's going to the Gulf of Mexico, and then Texas, and then Georgia, and then Florida, and then all the way to the White House Yeeeeaaaaaaarrrgh
Thursday, August 09, 2007
And said, Truly I say to you, unless you repent (change, turn about) and become like little children [trusting, lowly, loving, forgiving], you can never enter the kingdom of heaven [at all].
Whoever will humble himself therefore and become like this little child [trusting, lowly, loving, forgiving] is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
I had a moment of revelation about this concept a few days ago in a conversation with Elena. Someone on some message board somewhere was saying that we need to just do whatever it is that God says and that's that (my poor paraphrase. I have no idea what it actually says but that is what I interpreted him to say). It is easy and probably even taught that in order to have a child-like faith that we should blindly accept whatever God tells us to do and go do it.
How many of you know children that just blindly accept what you tell them without asking one important question: why? Most of the time it isn't out of disrespect or disobedience. A child is trying to understand the purpose of the action and the motivation behind it. By asking 'why', a child learns right from wrong, the place it has in this world, and how things work. They do it, but knowing why they are doing it can create a greater sense of purpose. Doesn't always mean the work will be done with joy... heh.
Why would or should our relationship with our Heavenly Father be any different? We trust Him to guide, teach, and direct us. Knowing why clarifies His vision for our lives.
Just like our earthly parents, God may not explain why because there are occasions if we know why we are doing something we may hesitate and muck it all up.
Friday, August 03, 2007
Wednesday, August 01, 2007
Friday, July 13, 2007
Sure enough there is.
Online Conversion - Convert just about anything to anything else
Bookmark it for your future measurement needs.
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Monday, July 09, 2007
So what is better than a LOLcat? LOLgoth!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
Even better is LOLNIN.
Friday, July 06, 2007
Monday, July 02, 2007
"Alright, where is it?!" - Here.
"Is that an iPhone??" - Yes.
"Is it as cool as I think it is?" - Yes.
"Did is change life as you know it?" - No, but it did make somethings alot easier.
"I am going to have go get one." - Yes, you are.
Saturday, June 30, 2007
You want to know more about what it is like to use an iPhone than it is to stand in line for 3+ hours to get one, right? Of course you do.
Now, I have very little to compare it to. I don't have a SmartPhone. My old phone was next to stupid, to be honest. It was nearly 3 years old. I planned on upgrading last year when Mark told me to wait until January with the keynote. Rumors were heavy there would be an iPhone. There there was the Keynote at MacWorld. Yup. I'm getting an iPhone. No doubt about it. Must own one. The Precious.........
After 6 months of waiting and hype, I couldn't take it anymore! I left work early to go to Green Hills Mall and wait. The guy next to me was someone I had been chatting with on the MacRumors forum that morning. So, I finally get in the store and purchase my iPhone. I get home around 7:15. After unloading some Plumgood groceries, I was ready to activate my iPhone by 8pm... that is after I finally got iTunes 7.3 to work.
In all, activation only took me abut 20 minutes once iTunes was working properly. They couldn't port my T-mobile number at the time. The guy at the AT&T store today said that I should call them on Sunday morning. In the meantime, the idiot turned off the phone part of my iPhone. It still works as an iPod, "revolutionary internet device" or whatever His Jobsness called it.. but no texting or making phone calls. I'm going to call them when I finish with this blog post to see if they can't fix that. Stupid.
Anyway, so, it does everything they say it will do. I was playing some music through the iPod last night and a phone call came it. The music quieted down and I could take the call. When I was finished, the music picked right back up. GoogleMaps was easy to set up with my home and work addresses stored in favorites. It automatically syncs my calendar and address book every time I dock it to my.
It doesn't allow me to add only one song to the iPhone. I can only work in playlists (btw - if you don't do this with your iPod - apparently I am the only person I know doing it this way - you can set a preference to manually manage the must on your iPod in iTunes.) So, that's annoying to me but everyone who works in playlists won't care.
The keyboard. I've never used like a BlackBerry keyboard so I have nothing to compare it to. It does take some getting use to. It's alot easier to use in landscape than in portrait. Right now, I make alot of typos. It's difficult to get used to exactly where to press to get a particular letter, but I think as I use it more, typing will become much easier.
The internet works great when you are in a wifi hotspot (oh - like my house). We tested it at Cracker Barrel this morning and EDGE is slow.
It switches between applications. There's no closing. When in Safari, it pops up to the last window you visited. It is super easy to switch between web pages. I had as many as 6 open last night.
Cover Flow in iPod is soooooooo cool. I love that.
*UPDATE* I called AT&T tech support to find out why I couldn't make or receive phone calls with my iPhone. He said that it was trying to reach a tower no longer in range. All I needed to do was shut it completely off and wait a few seconds. It works just fine now. The customer service was actually pretty good. I didn't wait long at all for a representative initially but took less than 5 minutes to get to actual tech support (I didn't call tech support first - I called the general customer care line.)
The screen can get kind of smudgy after it has been pressed against your face but that's why they've given you headphones with a mic. Der. It also comes with a suede like cleaning cloth. The belt clip I bought at the Apple Store today from Griffin (who gave us iSqueez and California Roll products for our iPods) also came with a cleaning cloth. FYI - Griffin is based here in Nashville.
So, in short, I am very, very, very happy with my iPhone. It was worth the wait. Have any other questions? Shoot them my in the comments!
All of the pictures can be found on flickr.
Friday, June 29, 2007
Wednesday, June 27, 2007
Curse you Steve Jobs!!! Or bless you Steve Jobs!!! Anyway, so I thought I would need to purchase the phone and then take it to the AT&T store for activation. I should have known better. This is Apple we are talking about here. They make your digital life easier.
I watched the video on activation last night. You can do it right from your computer. No store needed other than to purchase it. Yay! iPhone!
No I don't consider the iPhone to be just shy of Christ walking on water but it will absolutely make my day to day life easier. I hate having to use multiple calendars to keep up with everything. And let's not even talk about the disheveled Address Book. I've been waiting for nearly a year to get a new cell phone. I think my patience will be rewarded.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
Monday, June 25, 2007
Mark told me about it and I finally found the whole version... it is a late 1980's promo thing for... *dundundun* Windows 386.
And to balance it, the best 5 seconds on the internet: dramatic chipmunk
And Darth Chipmunk (ok - so it's a prairie dog. Get over it. It's funnier with "chipmunk")
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
Dance World Showcase in Nashville. June 1, 2007.
Amaya's Wise Women Retreat in New Mexico. June 17, 2007.
Those are the best pants - ever! Melodia's! Magic ass pants as we like to call them. They make pretty much everyone's butt look good. They are also the only 4 way stretch lycra you will ever catch me in.
Thursday, June 07, 2007
Tuesday, June 05, 2007
Monday, June 04, 2007
You scored as Samba, You are Samba!
Good-natured and sexy, you are more fun that anyone can possibly imagine.
You are exotic, energetic, and loud (in a good way).
You look exactly like you feel—fantastic!
Which ballroom dance are you?
created with QuizFarm.com
It isn't surprising though. Samba is one of my favorite (and better) dances. The showcase routine from last December was a samba.
Thursday, May 31, 2007
Friday night 6/1/07 at Dance World. Tickets are $30 and yes, dinner and the show are included.
Dinner starts at 6:30 and the show starts around 7:15pm. You thought the last one was good. This one is better. It's hawt as the kids say.
Wednesday, May 30, 2007
"OH NO! My iPod died!!! You can't be broken."
"Oh! Yay! It is broken! I can get a new one, now. Oh.. red nano!"
"Oh. It isn't broken. The battery is dead. Dangit."
Saturday, May 19, 2007
Thursday, May 17, 2007
Everyone cheers for everyone else, except for that one guy. I will leave him nameless; but truth be told, I don't feel all that bad for him...not receiving support. I feel bad for his instructor, because I love her to pieces. But this guy thinks he's apparently God's gift to dance and he's not THAT good. The one time he was in the Advanced Smooth class, he repositioned himself so that he didn't have to dance with me when the lines got jumbled. Because he did that, I was forced to go back to the beginning of the line. The first gentleman said, "But.. weren't you just here?"
*PK shifts eyes to other dancer*
"Oh....." he said.
Dude, I'm not sure why M is with you. Maybe you are a nice guy and you treat her well, but I think you are a jerk. And so does everyone else because when you came to class Tuesday night, 2 other women rolled their eyes and said "Great....".
And I'm not sorry that, when you were out during the scholarship event, no one was cheering for you.
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
You know if you got busted for DUI and then without your license, your butt would be in jail.
Sign the No Clemency For Paris Hilton Petition.
UPDATE: Paris's plea for a pardon laughed out of the Governor's Office. Heh.
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
Wow. That was over my shorts. My pedometer was on my hip, too. Dang. I'm shocked.
Friday, May 04, 2007
CNN's FIRST interview with Eric, TONIGHT on Anderson Cooper 360 at
10p ET / 9p CT / 8p MT / 7p PT.
Welcome to all-dance-all-the-time here at PK's. I'm going to be sharing some of the more interesting discussions from the International Belly Dance Conference of Canada, the first being from the panel on sex and sexuality in belly dance.
I missed the first part of the discussion but found out that the opening statement was essentially 'belly dance is sexy. Get over it.' And this came from a man.
I think my favorite part of it was Venus saying that she was tired of apologizing for the sensuality that is a part of belly dance. Yes, there are dancers who take it to extremes and even use it as a ruse for prostitution but belly dancers are NOT STRIPPERS. We are NOT PROSTITUTES! She is tired of having to make excuses to non-dancers as to why she pursues this art form because they get squeamish enough with belly dancers because of the costuming and all.
"oh - it's good exercise." "it's a chance to bond with other women."
It is the only dance that is working really hard to be legitimate (admittedly, our own fault as dancers - and another blog post) but have to apologize for being sensual. Dance is a sensual experience - for the viewer as well as the dancer. It is about the body moving to music. Does it have to be erotic? No, it doesn't. But to deny that there is some kind of physical or emotional reaction - joy, sadness, laughter - is plain dumb.
(Aside: on our way back from dinner Saturday night, we walked by some prostitutes but getting the camera out would have been too obvious. We wanted to put their picture in a line up that showed several belly dancers and ask "do you see a difference, because there is one.")
Sulieman, who is of Palestinian origin, talked about the dance from a Middle Eastern man's perspective. He encouraged the dancers in the audience to be flirty but coy. You don't want to just flail it all about on display for everyone. He then talked about the dancers (and this is why foreign dancers are now banned from working in
"What else am I supposed to call them? They use the dance to sleep with as many men as possible."
She started in about not using the same terms for men and he waved her off to let Yasmina (the conference organizer) speak. She ran from the back of the room to get to a microphone.
"My boss wants to say something. We have to let her speak."
"I would call them free and happy women," Yasmina said to loud cheers from the audience.
Yes, I am tired of apologizing. I am tired of making excuses about why I dance, whether it is belly or ballroom.
"I do it for health reasons; it's great exercise."
"So I can meet others."
"So I can connect with my feminine side."
While all of those, and any number of other statements, may be true to varying degrees. They all dance (badum ching) around the topic of sexuality. So does the church (yes, I'm dragging them into this as well because that is really a part of my frustration, too, but I will put that in another post.)
Some of my aggravation comes with the fact that I think society wouldn't want or expect to see a overweight woman comfortable with her body or her sexuality. While I am not completely there yet, I am far more comfortable with myself than a year or two ago. Truth is, I’ve felt like a healthy (thinner) woman trapped in a fat body. I could never get behind the whole fat acceptance/admirers thing. I’m glad that they found what they need but it isn’t for me. I have not finished losing the weight I want to lose but I know I will get to my goal with time and God’s help.
I'm tired of pretending the needs, the wants, the desires aren't there because either society thinks as a fat woman I shouldn't have them or the church thinks as a single woman I need to repress them (and don’t get me started on the idiots that are now saying single people should stay single. Oh for crying out loud – are you trying to drive people away from the church because if that was something I heard from my pastor, I would leave, too) - yes I know that is the human side of the church, not what God says. I am sick of hearing it and I am tired of apologizing for it. It is what it is.
Friday, April 27, 2007
The CNN Anderson Cooper 360 airing of Eric's story on Monday night received such an overwhelming web response (in the top 5 most viewed stories) that they're updating the story with a LIVE call from to Maggie (Eric's mom), on this Monday (4/30) night. The show will also include a conversation with a US Embassy spokesperson.
You can see the story at 10p ET / 9p CT / 8p MT / 7p PT. Watch for more information, double-check your local schedule or go to http://www.cnn.com/CNN/Programs/ for current listings.
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
For the viewer, you are drawn into that story and shared emotion. Randa Kamal made me weep with this performance of Inta Omri (You are my life). It is a love song. Classic Arab music is poetry. In talking with musicians over the weekend, they really didn't care for the current surge in pop music because it wasn't challenging to play and the lyrics were boring. The poetry was gone.
Belly dancing at its root is improvisational. The music plays and the dancer interprets the mood being played right then. Having a musician (Dr. George Sawa) explain this to me was a huge relief because I have never been a big fan of choreography. I have no problem with having a general plan for a dance but the audience, the location, how I feel will all play a huge role in how I would dance to a particular piece of music. It isn't that if it is a sad song, I would dance it like I just won the lottery but the nuances would be different. Different patterns. So you know "Alf Leyla Wa Leyla" (A 1001 nights) but you don't know this band or how fast they are going to play it. It is not supposed to be the same from day to day. The musicians don't play it exactly the same way each performance - why should the dancer?
For a brief moment Sunday night, I experienced tarab. With the live band and singers, on a packed dance floor, Linda told me to let it go. Use the time to release everything. Put all of my emotions, physical pain, heart and soul into the dance even though no one was watching. Time and space disappeared for a minute. All I heard was the music. No yelling. No wait staff. Nothing. Just the music and the lights. It is nearly impossible to put into words what I felt but I will never forget it. It was not a 'high' like a runner's high or what I've felt before like during showcase, which was a euphoric experience in and of itself. This was different.
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
Well, last night, I tossed some cut up tomato into the disposal. It would go bad before I got back so I thought I should get rid of it.
The garbage disposal whirred, rocked back and forth and then went THUNK.
IT FELL OFF THE SINK!
IT FELL OFF THE SINK!
It is now sitting at the bottom of my kitchen cabinet. Fell.Off. How the crap does a garbage disposal break and fall off a sink?! I hate it. I have had more problems with this thing (which has currently led to a dispute with the builder/warranty/management co).
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
Today marks a monumental step in our fight to Free Eric V. The court in has forwarded Eric's case file to the Appellate court. In accordance with Nicaraguan law, the Appellate Court may take up to 6 days to hold the formal hearing; the verdict follows within 5 days of the Hearing.
Now is our time as a community of supporters to take action. We are going to start a 6 day campaign as we await the decision of the Court – a campaign we are calling the FREE ERIC V. Avalanche
We must have as many people as possible with their eyes turned toward this case as we go through the appeal process. As a community of supporters, we must demand justice and will not stop until we bring him home.Day 1 of the Avalanche is today. The first step? Alerting everyone about the appeal. Contact your friends and fellow supporters of Eric; tell them it has begun!
Please check the MySpace page for bulletins every morning this week. Thank you again for your continued support.
(from the Free Eric Volz mail list)
The real deal: Kathy T - thank you!
Should you choose to participate, please make sure you pass this list of rules to the blogs you are tagging. I thought it would be appropriate to include them with the meme.
The participation rules are simple:
1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you think,My four nominees:
2. Link to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme,
3. Optional: Proudly display the 'Thinking Blogger Award' with a link to the post that you wrote (here is an alternative silver version if gold doesn't fit your blog).
1) Miss O'Hara. Our friendship is proof that one does not need to be face to face all the time in order to participate in the significant events of each other's lives. We had been talking in IM for months and months before we met. And the second time we met was when I flew to Detroit for her bridal shower. It was a hoot at her wedding to tell people that we met online and in person only twice. The looks were priceless.
Beyond that, she is amazing, thoughtful, stylish, intelligent and almost as crazy as me.
2) Blake Wylie. When he's blogging that is. Like I can say much. He has a very unique (in a good way) take on things. Good humor and insightful analysis. Blake goes for the best dressed man in the blogosphere and one of my favorite gun lovin' (almost, sort of) libertarian. That whole Fred Thompson thing I think disqualifies him. Hee. And I miss his videoblogs.
3) Digital Cowboy. Mark is one of my best friends. His posts on religion push me to search the Bible for more answers. And don't forget the poker. At least it isn't all poker all the time.
4) Chris Wage. I know. Shock! Chris and I likely agree on very little but he does make me think and he's a dang fine photographer.
And since there were a number of choices for 5 (most of them already nominated by other people) and I spent 6 days working on this post, I'm stopping at 4.
The shooting at Virginia Tech is about to become a case study in crisis management and response. In the coming days and weeks, there will be alot of criticism and analysis of the school's actions following the first shooting. People always say "you didn't do enough" in hindsight.
What is "enough?"
If you are an administrator at a time like this, there is NOTHING you can do to win (I don't mean win like the Sharks did last night - boo). Nothing. You are screwed no matter what you do. It is too much; it isn't enough. You aren't giving enough information. You are talking too much. If the university had cancelled classes and no further incident took place, there would have been hissy fits that the administration over-reacted. I guarantee it.
A large number of students commute to the campus and probably don't check their email first thing when they get up so they may not have gotten anything sent before 9:30am, approximate time of the email notifying students of the dorm shooting.
It took time to get the RA's up and moving. They went from door to door in the dorms, encouraging people to stay inside and away from windows. When the first shooting happened, they had no indication that a second spree would take place. I believe they focused their attention properly: on the dorms to keep those people safe.
Now, when did the university and police know the male victim in the room was not the shooter (assuming they thought murder/suicide and he shot her then himself)? That is where some quibbling can come in. I read one article that said witnesses at the scene told them the shooter fled the scene.
If they knew, say, at 8:30 that the shooter was loose and didn't do something at that point, then there is some room for questioning the school's response. I'm not sure what could have been done - I think it might have been a logistics nightmare to get security/police in all buildings. As the Vol Abroad noted in the NiT comments, college campus are porous. People come in and out from a variety of places. It would be nearly impossible to lock it completely down.
Virginia Tech is a large campus. I can't imagine what it would take to get something like that to happen at Vanderbilt given its size. Perhaps the email should have gone out earlier to cancel classes given they knew the shooter was at large.
The next question about warning signs will be what did the university do for the student in an attempt to prevent this. Well, a school can have the best counselors and psychological assistance programs in the world and if the student doesn't voluntarily walk through the door for assistance, there is nothing that we in administration can do.
Or are you going to suggest we force people go in for treatment?
People think living/working on a college campus is a safe environment. It isn't. Everything that happens in the wider world happens here. Incidents on campus are magnified because of that perception. Several years ago, an expelled student shot the Dean and others at Appalachia State University. An angry parent called and threatened me several weeks ago. It was serious enough that I called security in anticipation of his arrival to carry it out. Unfortunately, I am not permitted to carry on campus or else I could defend myself against such threats. Fortunately, he did not fly down to "take care of things."
I originally had a long rant about why the foreign press is involved and why it is none of their business, but I took that out mainly because I still don't care for the French. And Iran condemning the shootings like it was our own government that did it? Yeah. Whatever. I could also go on and on about gun control, but other people can argue that better than I can so I will stay out of it.
bridgett has some excellent thoughts about the stress of being on campus/in school in April. And I'm guessing the same bridgett has more spot on comments at Kat's blog on depression among foreign students. I would take her assessment of professional programs (engineering, etc) one step further to say that colleges should look at them long and hard as well as the surrounding support systems.
A friend of mine from undergrad was a physics major. She hated the program but loved what she was studying. There was no support - do or die culture. It isn't about the feminization of the hard sciences. If we expect the university to act as in loco parentis (in place of the parents) then make sure students are fully aware of ALL services available to them - not just when the Muncie Mart is open.
Give faculty, RA's, TA's, and staff that have regular student contact (not all staff positions deal with students) training on how to recognize depression and the appropriate information to help direct students to treatment. Full blown courses on psychology aren't necessary. We don't need to get into the business of treatment. A couple of hours spent in a meeting with the Director of Campus Counseling ought to be enough so that we as staff know what to look for in the students we work with on a daily basis. In defense of my own place of employment, we do have such a talk each fall during faculty orientation.
Given the size of the programs at many schools and lack of training for faculty and staff in recognizing warning signs of depression, it is an absolute wonder more incidents like what happened at Virginia Tech don't happen more often. Thank God they don't.
Vox Day is also correct in either one of his post or somewhere in the comments thread about what happened that the live coverage of the shooting and for days on end will be nothing more than violence porn.
Saturday, April 14, 2007
Friday, April 13, 2007
Thursday, April 12, 2007
Maybe because this is the playoffs, things are different.
See all the photos here.
Can't wait for Friday!
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
Actually, Brittney at NiT has a very nice roundup of the whole saga. Saves me from trying to hunt everything down again because I'm sure I missed something.
In PK's opinion, you have no right to free speech anymore. It's on paper - that whole First Amendment thing. But to protect it takes time and money. The crappy a$$ thing is that JL Kirk has more money and more resources than Kat (who SHOULD BE ABLE TO SAY WHAT HAPPENED TO HER AND WHAT SHE THOUGHT ABOUT THE EXPERIENCE WITHOUT FEAR OF BEING SUED).
Free speech is for those that can afford it.
Today, liberty died a little more. (/end melodramatic effect)
UPDATE: Evil Glenn (from the days of the War) has picked up the story. As a law professor, he does have some knowledge on the subject of free speech in the digital frontier.
UPDATE 2: I would like to remind JL Kirk Associates that the blogosphere took out John Kerry (Swiftboat Vets anyone?) and Dan Rather (fake memos). I'm sure the story will be picked up in the old school media as well as float around the internet for a while. The internets is nearly forever, ya know. Oops. You thought threatening Kat would stop it? No. It's just started. Just because Kat may be forced to take it down, doesn't mean that others won't keep it.
UPDATE 3: Newscoma is keeping a master list of bloggers writing on this story. My favorites are Bob Krumm (SERIOUS google juice) and Bill Hobbs. They should definately be read.
UPDATE 4: Bob's post made the front page of Fark.com. Read the thread here. Oh... the linky goodness.
Thursday, April 05, 2007
Monday, April 02, 2007
Saturday night was the Bal Anat show, the first time ever in the Midwest and one of the few presentations outside of California. Bal is the French word for "dance" and Anat is the Mesopotamian mother goddess, so the show (and the first dance) is "Dance of the MotherGoddess".
I wish I could convey to you what that show was like. Amazing. Wonderful. Way better than Bellydance Superstars. This show should be on the road. It takes the viewer on a journey - the history and evolution of belly dance from its roots in the Mother Goddess rituals through the folk dances of North Africa and the Middle East (such as gahwazee, Algerian and the Tea Tray dance) to today with hip hop belly dance fusion and props such as veils and swords.
The opening had a processional of all the dancers coming down the aisles to the stage. The energy and joy they projected was emotionally overwhelming for me. I cried all the way through the entrance. One of the other non-belly dance performances that does that to me is Ben and Shalene Ermis dancing to O Mio Bambino Caro. I have it on tape and every time I watch it, I cry. The love for the dance and each other just pours out of the screen. See? Even as I am thinking about it right now, I am tearing up. 'Scuse me. *tissue dab*
I went up to talk to Suhaila about my injury and how it was affecting my dance. My roommates encouraged me to do so. She gave me some recommendations to take back to my physical therapist. "Tell him your your dance teacher said to do..."
"My dance teacher."
Suhaila called herself my dance teacher. I nearly squealed. I did scream when she was rolling my thigh - it hurt! She has hands like vice grips. 38 years of zil playing will do that.
Few people live up to the hype that sounds them. Fewer still exceed expectations. She launched past any pre-conceived notion I had about her and her teaching style.
I plan to go to California (eep!) to attend her Level-1 Certification workshop in later this year. After really being exposed to she and her mother's technique, I can see how it can and does transform the dance. Her mother is truly the root of belly dance in America, along with Ibrahim Farrar (who passed away a while ago). Total East Coast/West Coast drama, but according to Suhaila they loved each other and danced together often. Many of the terms we use are terms Jamilla Salimpour created. Maya. Turkish Drop. Basic Egyptian. I had no idea how much of an impact her mother had on my dancing. I can't wait to meet her.
She is 80 years old and still teaches! "And she will kick your butt, too." Can you imagine it? She has been dancing since the 1940's. 60 years devoted to her craft. The amount of knowledge and experience she has is likely to never be paralleled. Except for maybe Suhaila or her daughter (who is a doll-baby! You just want to put her on a shelf. So cute and so sweet.)
On my way home, I was listening to some songs that I have danced to in the past. I was seeing them in a whole new way after the choreography session this weekend. I heard new elements in the music. "If my feet went half time, then I could do interior hip squares full time... layer that with a undulation up to down..... while turning 6 counts to the right. Stop and turn 6 counts to the left." so you can see how complicated this art form can really be.
I am definitely blessed to have been a part of it and my dancing will be much better for it.
And it was all way better than Bellydance Superstars. Yeah - I'm saying it again 'cause it needs to be said. This isn't a smack to the dancers in that show (several of them are former students of Suhaila) but there isn't real variety in the show as compared to Bal Anat. There is no history. No depth. No real emotional experience for the viewer. Sure, you are entertained by pretty girls in cute costumes who are technically very good dancers with years of training in multiple dance styles but... it lacks depth. I would follow Bal Anat around the country like people follow(ed) the Dead or Widespread Panic.
Monday, March 26, 2007
Sunday, March 25, 2007
On Monday, March 26th at approximately 7:30 am, the Today Show on NBC will feature the story of Eric Volz. Please urge your friends and family to watch and become involved in his case. This is a great step forward in gaining national and international attention for Eric's story.
The role of the press in Eric's case is incredibly important. The more who learn about his case on a national and international scale, the more there will be to come together in the broader fight for justice in places where lines of right and wrong have become blurred.Eric and his family are humbled by the letters, prayers, and donations given to his defense. Please continue to spread the word about Eric's case and demand that justice be served.
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
"the many benefits...?"
Does that involve cancel or allow? I guess so because it took me to a site where I could buy Vista and other quality Microsoft products, like add ons to IE.
Yes, I drank the kool-aid and now look at Windows with great derision.
Monday, March 19, 2007
Friday, March 16, 2007
Thursday, March 15, 2007
Grand Opening of
Hookah Lounge and Bar
With DJ spinning the
Hottest New Mixes of International music
Belly Dance Shows at 11:30pm
Featuring Linda and Elina
With guest artists Jennifer and Ciona
Food, beer, and wine served all night, 7 days a week
Over 30 flavors of Hookah!
Must be 18 or older
Open ‘till 3am
Free wireless internet
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Dagnabit.... I swear... I hate ugly clothes. I was just walking back from another building, and the girl in front of me was wearing a grey jersey knit mini dress with a green (large, thick, ugly) belt hiked up to create an empire waist. But wait - it gets worse... the dress had a pilgrim style white collar thing.
And she was probably wearing flip-flops but I don't know. I was in shock—and still need therapy—after the pilgrim collar thing.
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Because I need to take a real active role in my own weight loss. When I started working with Allison (my dietitian) in November 2005, the weight came off like gang busters. Every week, I went in and lost at least 2 lbs. I know initially, alot of that was water weight. As March and April rolled around, it tapered off to about a pound a week.
I dropped 2 dress sizes in 6 months. I coasted. It wasn't hard work.
When I moved in July, I stopped paying attention to what I was eating. I stopped keeping my food records. I believe the only thing that kept me from ballooning back to my original size was the fact that I exercised alot. Dance classes several times a week. Walking 10,000+ steps per day.
I also toned up quite a bit too. So the time wasn't completely wasted.
This morning, however, I went into my closet and pulled out a pair of pants that I haven't worn since last summer (it's finally warm enough to wear them again). And I couldn't zip them.
I thought I would hyperventilate. I couldn't believe it. Actually... in truth... I can. I've been eating like crazy, especially when I get home from work.
I am still a stress eater. I eat when I don't feel well. I actually would rather exercise but I can't physically do as much as I would like (and my physical therapist wouldn't recommend too much activity anyway until my back and abdominal muscles are stronger). Since I can't exercise much, I eat. And when I've been to the store, I've been buying crap - chips, ice cream.
So, tonight, when I get home, I'm throwing whatever is left out of the chips and ice cream. I don't care if they are barely or un-opened bags or how much they cost. They are gone.
Today after physical therapy, I will be meeting with the coordinator of the fitness center at the rehab place. I can stay on and use their gym for up to 6 months after being released from therapy. It is right across the street from my office. That will make it super convenient to go right after work. You meet with a personal trainer twice at the beginning, again at 3 months and at 6 months (or whenever you would like to pay for their additional services). I know that will be a real benefit to me - to have access to a full range of equipment and expertise. You can only do it alone for so long, you know?
So, today, I'm getting started all over again. I don't know what my weight right now is... probably between [Hey - I'm not putting here for you people - sorry] given that I couldn't zip up my size 18 pants (I know - it does depend on the cut. I put on a size 16 pair this weekend and could almost get them zipped up.)
I am going to stick to under 1700 calories per day. I will actually use the meal tracker. I will start to use some of the recipes. With my therapist and trainer at the gym, I will come up with appropriate exercises. I will eventually get back into my regular dance classes (right now they aren't fun because I hurt! And that frustrates Todd, which frustrates me. We've been snipping at each other. It's just bad.)
I know I can lose the weight. Thanks for letting me rant but I just need to say it out loud (so to speak). Seeing it in print will make it more real. Knowing that other people have read it will make me accountable.
* originally posted on sparkpeople.com *
Thursday, March 08, 2007
Last night was the first meeting of a new class at church - Conversations with the Women in my Head. The lady teaching it is a phenomenal teacher and speaker. She is very open, honest, and transparent about her life which helps to encourage other people to share what is going on. I’ve taken her classes for several years and was among the first to sign up for this one.
So, knowing that there are people in there who would put her on a pedestal because she’s up there teaching, she offered up this story to knock herself off of it before they had a chance. “Before you hold me up there, just remember that last week… I was almost a convicted felon.”
Huh? Wha? How did that happen, D? And knowing her, this is going to be on HOOT of a story. So the short version is that a couple of weeks ago, she was pulled over in Spring Hill for busted tail lights and expired tags. When they ran her license, it has been suspended over a ticket in 2004 which they said she hadn’t paid and they were going to arrest her and impound her 1992 red Chevy mini-van.
After dragging 2 more officers into the situation, putting her in the back of the police car with blaring lights in front of half the town of
And then she had to go through a nightmare process to get her license reinstated at the DMV.
And then she had to go back to Spring Hill to answer these charges. She said a magistrate stepped in her on behalf and spoke to the judge and they dropped all the charges save for some court costs.
D explained what the voices in her head were telling her – I hate my husband (she admits this was completely irrational and she does love him very much). I hate my car. How can you be so stupid? They were constantly beating her down until the magistrate stepped in.
She made the comparison that this magistrate was like Jesus stepping in and acting as a mediator, an advocate on our behalf to God.
What were the voices telling me?
“Yeah BUT Jesus didn’t create the situation that caused his execution. He ISN’T part of the problem! He is the solution! Faulty comparison, D. This is why I hate the government. Granted Spring Hill isn’t a hotbed for criminal activity but surely it didn’t take 3 officers to arrest a not hysterical woman. They aren’t protecting and serving. They are the lowest form of tax collectors. Can you tell me what possible harm her expired tags were causing society? None! A notice about the break lights I could possibly understand. Maybe. And all of this was compounded because 3 years ago, some state employee didn’t enter her payment correctly and they automatically suspended her license – without notifying her! I hate the government. NOW do you really understand why I am libertarian?!”
In talking with some women after class about it, I went through a not so full-of-anger version of this and when I got to the libertarian part, I think I scared them.
Saturday, March 03, 2007
Wednesday, February 28, 2007
But if you thought my first showcase routine was rockin'...
wait'll ya see the next one!!
We did most of the choreography for Summer showcase last night, and this new dance is hawt.
Like "oh my god, I will actually be doing *that*?!" hawt!
"Wait... Todd's married, right? Is Alisa ok with this?"
The answer is yes, yes, and yes.
Monday, February 26, 2007
Monday, February 19, 2007
Saturday, February 17, 2007
Keep praying for his family and his safety.
Pray that the appeals process will be swift and the Embassy will work with the local government to have him released.
Friday, February 16, 2007
After Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey were separated, public sympathy was overwhelmingly in favor of Nick. It seems to always goes to the woman by default.