Friday, April 25, 2003

 

Friday Five for this week:

1. What was the last TV show you watched?
I watched a part of Will & Grace last night, quite randomly, actually. I forget to watch TV since I've been without one for about a year and a half.

2. What was the last thing you complained about and what was the problem?
Oh, geez. I'm a complainer and it's the end of the semester. I'm supposed to remember? Probably about having to get up early this morning.

3. Who was the last person you complimented and what did you say?
It was probably someone last night. Can't remember. About good presentations or cool ideas or something.

4. What was the last thing you threw away?
A half-full coffee cup in my office. Replaced it with today's coffee cup.

5. What was the last website (besides this one) that you visited?
Um, besides blogger, the FF, and my blog? The UMN wireless login page.

- posted by laurie @ 4/25/2003 09:54:00 AM (0) comments

Thursday, April 24, 2003

 

This article in New Scientist links early puberty in African American girls to hormone-containing hair prodicts. It's a pretty astounding report, though in the end the authors and experts they consult say that evidence is not conclusive. Still, this is pretty freaky.

Link from World Sex News, your source for "everything saucy, erotic, and downright rude," which I found, actually, while going through my referrer logs: someone was looking for "Penn State Blog Pics," and I am hit number 21, while Sex World News is hit number 25.

- posted by laurie @ 4/24/2003 10:11:00 AM (0) comments

Wednesday, April 23, 2003

 

*gratuitous self-congratulatory post*

I just got the email confirming that my proposal has been accepted, and yours truly will be presenting a paper at the AoIR Conference this fall in Toronto! Yay!

*/gratuitous self-congratulatory post*

- posted by laurie @ 4/23/2003 06:49:00 PM (0) comments

 

Ok, I have to gripe about technology at work again, I'm sorry. Today the computer in the office decided to seize up while running Word and only Word. This is not normal. Then, while I was using Pagemaker, it did that wonderful old-time Mac "poof!" disappearing act, where no freezing is involved, but your application just seems to 'pop' and retract into the finder. And after the popping and disappearing files, the computer told me that the application "unknown" unexpectedly quit. Well, no kidding! This application "unexpectedly" quits all the time, but never before has the Mac felt compelled to call the application "unknown." Does not bode well, my friends. Keep your fingers crossed that the new computer and the new software with the right fonts and so on will be ready soooooooon.

- posted by laurie @ 4/23/2003 04:38:00 PM (0) comments

Tuesday, April 22, 2003

 

Fresh copyright-related links from Zeropaid.com - Penn State Students Lose Internet Access Due to Filesharing.

The headline sounds worse than it is, considering that access will be restored when it is clear that infringing material is removed. But how will the administration know which MP3 files are infringing, and which have been legitimately converted from legally purchased CDs? Hmmm?

Comments from the Zeropaid users run the gamut on this one. I pasted some of them below. I think the WRFan response is especially interesting. I am remembering, vaguely, a student that got "caught" by a university for using filesharing apps. The student went through the university's disciplinary system, instead of being prosecuted under applicable federal, state, etc. laws. Had the student used a non-univeristy account and gotten prosecuted instead of sent through the academic, oh, judicial affairs, or whatever it is, the student would have been nailed with fines and jailtime. So, why are universities a hotbed of fielsharing activity? Hmmmmm . . .

shawners | April 22, 2003 4:05pm | ..........dsl.rcsntx.swbell.net | Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1; YComp 5.0.0.0; .NET CLR 1.0.3705)

They had school bandwidth, and little money. DOESNT SOUnd like they would buy a CD anytime soon!! regardless if their was no internet connection.. We can only hope that they get law degrees and go after the sons of biatches at RIAA and MPAA..




Dividend | April 22, 2003 4:13pm | w.cc...v....mts.net | Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1; Q312461)

People with school bandwidth and little money.
Clearly the most lucrative market, deserving of all the advertising and content targetting money can buy. Not to mention how it's worth the cash spent on lawyers to keep this market in check and buying as much as possible.

And yet they wonder . . .




DeadMan | April 22, 2003 4:53pm | .com | Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv:1.3; MultiZilla v1.3.1.2) Gecko/20030312

They need to use better P2P clients methinks. Ones that don't expose your share etc




WRFan | April 22, 2003 4:57pm | rv.t.online.de | XBoX 64 (NVidea GForce 3 Architecture)

they are stupid. why endanger your life with such stupid things are file sharing? I mean, university is more important than all this p2p crap. I never use the internet for anything illegal when I am using university computers. either use your private connection to do p2p, or if you got none, well, then don't p2p, what's the big deal? as if our lives depended on some stupid hollywood movies we share over p2p




dr. damn | April 22, 2003 5:12pm | .........dsl.snfc...pacbell.net | Opera/7.10 (Windows NT 5.1; U) [en]

DeadMan -- there aren't many p2p clients that don't expose what the user is sharing. In fact, the only one that comes to mind is Freenet, which isn't ideal for music and movie sharing.



- posted by laurie @ 4/22/2003 05:39:00 PM (0) comments

Sunday, April 20, 2003

 

oh hey! for those that know what this'll be referring to -- I am done. YAAAYYYYY!

i feel the sudden urge to never use capital letters again. think i could get away with it? probably not.

In slightly pre-celebration of being done, I went out with Eric last night for sustenance (Good Earth), refreshment (grande soy latte B&N-Starbucks style), and new music. Bought the "new" They Might Be Giants collection, the Dial-a-Song 20th Anniversary collection, and the Snatch soundtrack. Both are very cool, but you can guess, can you not, which one I am more excited about? Yeah, even though the Dial-a-Song collection is mainly re-releases of stuff that can be gotten elsewhere (which menas I already have it), there are a few things that make it worth it, like the Malcolm in the Middle theme song and the live version of "Actual Size" with the drum solo. THE drum solo. "For Animal from the Muppet Show, please press or say 9." Otherwise, it's like having a new mix of TMBG songs that I arranged and burned myself. But of course I didn't arrange them myself, and so I have to remember that not everyone thinks "The End of the Tour" should only go at the END of an album. Makes sense to me!

My printer has spent the last hour, literally, printing out reading for the next week of Psychology of Language. I am afraid. I am very afraid. I am leading class this Thursday and the following Tuesday and Turday, as well. And the printer just won't stop. Shit.

Guess I'd better get reading.

- posted by laurie @ 4/20/2003 06:20:00 PM (0) comments

 

Do you know that, according to blogger, I maintain or am a team member of six blogs? :) yeah, I just started another one, grying out this new Dano thing that blogger's doing. If you have not heard about it, well, see what's new. It would be nice if they'd announce these things on the blogger main page, right? I happened across this information on the blog of a Spanish blogger to whom I would give credit if I could, but I don't remember the blog name or url - it was coffee-related, though, and I found it through the Snaish-language blog directory, Blogdir. I was actually surporised at how much of the writing I understood. I haven't spoken Spanish, really, in about four years, though I pick up a novel every once in a while to try and keep my reading comprehension up.

- posted by laurie @ 4/20/2003 05:55:00 PM (0) comments

Saturday, April 19, 2003

 

Friday Five for yesterday, and last week, because I am a flake.

1. Who is your favorite celebrity?
This changes frequently. The creature-of-habit me says, the Dead Poets Society Guys (all of them, but Robert Sean Leonard and Ethan Hawke the most, followed by Josh Charles, and that cutie-pie extra you can see in the through-the-legs shot right at the end of the movie, because he looks like a kid I had a huge crush on in jr. high). The slightly less habit-driven me says, well, I like Susan Sarandon an awful lot, and I currently am very impressed with Ed Norton, and Drew Barrymore is a cutie, and Chete Lera is really good as the psychologist in "Abre los Ojos."
2. Who is your least favorite?
Angelina Jolie creeps me out. The girls and boys of today's scary pop music scene annoy me. And Keanu Reeves, pretty though he is, can't act his way out of a paper bag. I still think the Bill and Ted's movies were the best thing he did - he was good in those and, for what they were, they were awesome!
3. Have you ever met or seen any celebrities in real life?Yep. Lived next door to the kid that was in Cocoon and the Neverending Story, briefly. Lots of other "close encounters": Lindsay bumped into Ethan Hawke, quite literally, while she and I were at a benefit for his theater troupe. Robert Sean Leonard, Frank Whaley, Lisa Loeb, and Danny DeVito were at the same benefit, among other celebs. Went to school with people with various television-and-film connections. Saw BonJovi on Melrose. Saw Heidi Fleiss in Santa Monica - someone I was with yelled her name and she turned around and waved at us. I am sure there's more, but I am blanking.
4. Would you want to be famous? Why or why not?
Nope. Because I like being me, and I think true fame inevitably changes who a person is.
5. If you had to trade places with a celebrity for a day, who would you choose and why?
Cameron Diaz. Not sure why, but she just came to mind, and yeah, I think she'd be fun to be. She looks like a genuinely nice person who enjoys herself.

and now for last week's . . . (stolen from Kara's blog, since they're not up on the FF site)

Friday, April 11, 2003
Friday Five
1. What was the first band you saw in concert?
not sure - my dad took me to see some shows when I was little, but I think that, like Kara, I have to confess that NKOTB was my forst concert. I had seventh-row floor seats, because a guy in my eighth-grade social studies classes won them on the radio. He was going to do something like rip them up or burn them, but I bought them, I think for about $15.00 each. I think I went with Heather, but I know we were chauffered by Mrs. DeBernardis, who was taking my sister, Julia DeBernardis, and some other seven-year-olds to the concert, as well. I was about out of the NKOTB phase, but I'd never seen them, and the seats were soooo good, I just couldn't resist.
2. Who is your favorite artist/band now?
They Might Be Giants. Hands down. They rock my world, make me happy, and make me bounce uncontrollably when certain songs play. Loved them since 1990, though I liked them ever since I saw the "Don't Let's Start" video on Nick Rocks!, the 80s Nickelodeon video show, circa 1984?5?
3. What's your favorite song?
Um, about half of what TMBG have put out, and some other random stuff. There's no way to narrow.
4. If you could play any instrument, what would it be?
Piano? I played for a few years, and I liked it. I'd like something simple and mainstream, like piano or guitar. I bought a bass once, but never learned to play, really, and sold it to a friend for some cash and a cappuccino machine.
5. If you could meet any musical icon (past or present), who would it be and why?
John Linnell from They Might Be Giants. Because I have met Flans twice, and gotten his autograph twice, and I'd like to have Linnell's, as well. And the Band of Dans, too!

- posted by laurie @ 4/19/2003 04:39:00 PM (0) comments

 

EULOGY FOR LONG-GONE COMPUTER, IN ALL CAPS*

DO YOU EVER GET NOSTALGIC FOR TECHNOLOGY--YOU KNOW; MISS YOUR OLD STUFF, NOT BECAUSE IT WAS PARTICULARLY GOOD STUFF, BUT BECAUSE OF THE EMOTIONAL CONNECTION TO SAID STUFF? I DO. I SOMETIMES MISS CHLOE. LINDSAY KNOWS WHO CHLOE IS--SHE AND I USED CHLOE, IN COMBINATION WITH PRODIGY TO MEET GUYS IN NEW YORK (PROBABLY NOT THE SMARTEST THING TO DO, BUT OH WELL! THE TWO OF US DID AN INORDINATELY LARGE AMOUNT OF STUPID THINGS, AND WE CAME OUT THE OTHER SIDE OF OUR TEENS MORE OR LESS UNSCATHED).

CHLOE WAS MY FIRST--COMPUTER, THAT IS. ;) MY SENIOR YEAR IN HIGH SCHOOL, I GOT HER, A TOSHIBA SATTELITE LAPTOP COMPUTER, ALONG WITH A PORTABLE CANON INKJET PRINTER, AS A BIRTHDAY/GRADUATION PRESENT. THE TWO FIT IN MY BACKPACK, THOUGH BECAUSE THIS WAS 1994, THEY ALSO WEIGHED ENOUGH TO GIVE ME A BACKACHE WHEN I ATTEMPTED TO TAKE THEM ANYWHERE IN SAID BACKPACK. CHLOE STUCK AROUND UNTIL ABOUT 2000, AT WHICH POINT I SADLY LOST HER, BUT UNTIL THEN, SHE FUNCTIONED WELL, AND CAME IN HANDY EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE, THOUGH I HAD REPLACED HER WITH A DESKTOP IN 1998.

CHLOE AND I BEGAN OUR ADVENTURES TOGETHER SHORTLY BEFORE MY 18TH BIRTHDAY IN LOS ANGELES. WE PROMPTLY TRANSFERRED BACK TO D.C., WHERE I WAS FINISHING UP HIGH SCHOOL. FROM THERE, WE WENT BACK TO L.A. FOR A MONTH OR SO, TO NEW YORK FOR ABOUT SIX MONTHS, BACK TO L.A., THIS TIME MAKING THE CROSS-COUNTRY JOURNEY WITH LINDSAY IN A 1O' MINI MOVING VAN, AND, AFTER ANOTHER SIX MONTHS, WE WENT BACK TO D.C., WHERE I FINALLY GOT AROUND TO ENROLLING IN COLLEGE. FIVE YEARS LATER WE MADE THE NEXT MAJOR MOVE, THOUGH WE'D MADE THREE MINOR ONES SINCE RETURNING TO THE D.C. AREA. WITH HUSBAND IN TOW (AND SISTER, BROTHER-IN-LAW, AND HUSBAND AND BROTHER-IN-LAW'S HIGH SCHOOL FRIEND ALONG FOR ASSISTANCE WITH HEAVY FURNITRE OBJECTS), CHLOE AND I MOVED ON UP TO THE BIG 10: PENN STATE. IN HAPPY VALLEY WE FINALLY PARTED WAYS, AND I AM SURE SHE IS IN THE COMPUTER EQUIVALENT OF THE AFTERLIFE NOW. THAT COMPUTER AND I WENT THROUGH A LOT TOGETHER! AND THOUGH I NOW HAVE THE NIFTY-COOL MAC IBOOK, COMING UP ON ITS SECOND BIRTHDAY SOON, THERE'LL NEVER BE A REPLACEMENT FOR CHLOE. SHE HELPED TYPE UP MY FIRST RESUME AND PROVIDED TOURNAMENT-LEVEL TRIPEAKS COMPETITION IN MY DORM ROOM. SHE HANDLED A MAJORITY OF MY COLLEGE PAPERS, AND THE PAPERS OF MANY FRIENDS AND ROOMMATES, AS WELL. SHE MADE IT POSSIBLE FOR ME TO SELL MY TYPED-UP COURSE NOTES FOR THREE CONSECUTIVE SEMESTERS:WOMEN'S HISTORY IN AMERICA (1800-PRESENT, I THINK), INTRO TO THEATER, AND ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE--FOR 'POCKET' MONEY. IN 1996 SHE HAPPILY ACCEPTED THE STEP UP FROM THE CHARITY 24-BPS POCKET MODEM TO THE 14.4 PCMCIA FAX MODEM, AS ADVANCED AS SHE GOT. SHE WENT ONLINE, BUT DIDN'T HAVE THE SPEED OR POWER TO HANDLE THE WWW, POOR THING. GRAPHICAL BROWSERS WERE JUST TOO NEWFANGLED FOR MS. CHLOE TO DEAL WITH. GETTING EMAIL THROUGH PINE IN A TELNET WINDOW WAS JUST FINE WITH HER, THANK YOU. IF ONE COULDN'T GOPHER IT OR TELNET IT, IT WASN'T WORTH IT :)

WHILE I OFTEN MISS CHILDHOOD TECH (LIKE – ANYONE ELSE REMEMBER THESE – MERLIN, SIMON, "I TOOK A LICKIN' FROM A CHICKEN" – I SWEAR I OWNED THAT; IT REALLY EXISTED), IT'S MY FIRST LITTLE (BIG, HEAVY, PONDEROUS) LAPTOP THAT I MISS THE MOST.

*caps because I was doing something that required them - and taking occasional pauses to write this, which is silly randomness, but hey! would ya really expect anything different at this point in the game? If so, you've gotta be a new reader ;)

- posted by laurie @ 4/19/2003 03:27:00 PM (0) comments

 

Thanks to coffee at late, late hours, I am one of the few people up to appreciate this:

We are currently experiencing a wonderful thunderstorm. Heavy rain, loud, rolling thunder, and big, room-illuminating lightning. I have always been fascinated by thunderstorms. I love them! They are, in fact, the thing that I most missed about the East Coast while living on the West Coast (besides Fall - c'mon, a whole season, or a thunderstorm?)

Here's to 3 am storms and the coffee that allows me to be awake for them. The little sister was right - it's Friday night - I should do what I enjoy: consume caffeine and stormwatch.

If only it were warmer and I could go splash, barefoot, in the downpour. I'll bet there are some great puddles forming in the parking lot behind my building. I;m tempted to do it anyway, but the weather site says it's in the low 40s and I absolutlety can not be sick right now! So I'll have to watch and listen from here.

And I am logging off - that last clap of thunder shook the building. Glad I have a surge protector and an extended warranty (including surge coverage) on the laptop!

- posted by laurie @ 4/19/2003 12:58:00 AM (0) comments

Friday, April 18, 2003

 

followup to the last post, before I head to the grocery: sorry for the typos!

and finally . . . warning to all: drinking delicious, steaming, french-press-brewed coffee at midnight is a baaaaad idea. I was on the phone with my sister when I decided late-night coffee would be yummy - and she said it was Friday, so it was ok. Now I am not so sure. It's not good to be so wired at 12:15 on any night of the week, unless of course, one has has a big project due in the next few days . . . then it's ok.

Oh, the sister also said I can have another tattoo. She's going to design it, because she's an artist and she's cool like that. I haven't gotten one in six or seven years (and some people think that's just fine - but this one has a very special reason behind it, so I am justifying it that way). When I get it, I'll share. Geez, another think to save my pennies for. I need a lot more pennies than I currently have.

Anyone want to hire me over the summer? I have a range of skills, including making fondue, copyediting (my typos not being indicative of this skill), door-to-door fundraising, and locksmith appointment setting and dispatch.

to the store!

- posted by laurie @ 4/18/2003 10:24:00 PM (0) comments

 

hello . . . ooo . . . oo . . o . o

*chirp* *chirp*

I know, I know, the memex has been feeling neglected these days. Not a lot of information going in, not a lot of associational linking going on, and, well, very little in the way of spiralling train wrecks.

A friend observed yesterday that she's surprised I have time to blog. Sometimes, so am I! But you know what? I love it. Love it less than They Might Be Giants and cream cheese wontons (sorry, I had Chinese tonight! :) ), but more than writing seminar papers or reading about discourse processing and neuroimiaging studies (really, I gotta throw up some links for you guys, my three dear readers, to check out. This stuff sometimes hurts - especially when night-owl me tries to read for class at 2 am. the supra-what? the tepor-huh? it's in the brain, I know that much . . . ).

Great randomness today, sorry. I have been sitting more or less in the same spot, at the computer at my kitchen table, all day. all day. So if I am off kilter, I sort of have an excuse!

Oh, by the way - about the nont enough time comment - when I was a brand-new graduate student at Penn State, I met this Ph D student - he was in the sciences (can't remember what field precisely). He told me that if I kept working until everything was done, I would work my entire time in graduate school, never have any fun, and suffer from chrinic guilt whenever I did anything non-scholarly. Balance is important. So, blogging, or reading a novel for ten minutes or so every day, or exercising - these things are important.

Besides, not watching TV frees up an amazing amount of time to fritter away on other things - like email, surfing the net, bloghopping, (re)designing webpages that may or may not ever make it off of the hard drive, etc.

Well Eric just called, and he's stuck at work, judging Magic (the Gathering, you know?) tournaments, and he asked me to run to the grocery, since he'll be home grotesquely late and is opening tomorrow morning, so I gota go.

See? Total randomness. Disculpe!

- posted by laurie @ 4/18/2003 10:08:00 PM (0) comments

Tuesday, April 15, 2003

 

Today's the day! In addition to taxes being due today (and we owe, yuck!), today is the day that Mickey Mouse shoulda, woulda come into the public domain.

Hey, thanks Congress, Supreme Court, Disney, MPAA, RIAA, and other content-hogs. you effectively own all of my cultural referents for the entire span of my life, plus. And that plus keeps going up. On whjose planet is this a "limited time"? How does this promote sciences and the useful arts? It doesn't.





Don't take my words for it, get it from the mouse's mouth directly: Reason: Interview (of sorts) with Mickey

So, today, as you go about your daily buysiness, think of all the cool things that could have been done iwht Mickey -online, in day-care centers, and so on, if only he were free. Cmon, everyone, MICKEY WANTS TO BE FREE!


- posted by laurie @ 4/15/2003 07:02:00 AM (0) comments

Sunday, April 13, 2003

 

All I did this weekend was work. And I feel like, even though I worked all weekend, I didn't accomplish anything I really wanted to. Hell!

I'm just venting. The end of the semester is nearing, and so I am becoming the anxious stressball I become every semester. Let me tell you, though: there is NO WAY I will be as freaked out as I was last semester, which was just hell. Never take a quantiative methds course for fun!

I'm supposed to have a very early morning commitment tomorrow, and I am trying to decide if said commitment is too early in the morning, and if perhaps it could be completed at another time.

Blogging from here on out might be sparse, academic, and of a stress-relieving nature from here on out. Just a warning, you know?

- posted by laurie @ 4/13/2003 11:07:00 PM (0) comments

Saturday, April 12, 2003

 

oh - my- god- am- i- tired.

i'd post more, but my brain is absolutly fried right now. must nap.

-but one more thing: I pooled some savings and b-day cash, hoofed it circuit city, and now - ta-da! wireless apartment. nifty.

- posted by laurie @ 4/12/2003 01:15:00 PM (0) comments

Thursday, April 10, 2003

 

Guess what, everyone? Laurie's blogging wireless! Woo-hoo! I'm sitting in my office right now, waiting for the office computer to finish its latest fit of convulsions so I can do my work, and blogging on my laptop! I got my very own wireless card today, yay! This AirPort thing rocks! I really need a wireless access point for my housie so I can wander around and compute (read: blog and check email) everywhere - the living room, the bedroom, the kitchen, the bathroom - oh, wait, that last one's not necessary! :) Someone shoot me when we get to that level of connectivity saturation - though I am sure there are people that are already that connected. Anyway, just wanted to say that the U of MN College of Agriculture, Food, and Environmental Sciences, of which the Dept. of Rhetoric is a part for weird historical reasons, is absolutely the best for finding a way to provide a good number of students and instructors with wireless cards.

Now to go to circuit city and get the wireless/ethernet router - probably the netgear one, as netgear seems to be the only company willing to claim copatibility with and support for Macs (other companies kind of suggest it'll probably work, but if it doesn't, and if it screws up your computer, they're so not responsible because any Mac use is completely at your own risk. That, lemme tell ya. translates into complete consumer confidence!

The Evil One - uh, desktop here in the office - seems to have stopped shuddering and locking up, so I need to get back to work. Toodles!

- posted by laurie @ 4/10/2003 04:08:00 PM (0) comments

Tuesday, April 08, 2003

 

New blogrolling material: Ruggles' Blog.
Yay referrer log!

- posted by laurie @ 4/08/2003 10:01:00 PM (0) comments

 

My cute new duck:





but he looks a little out of place with his happy yellow bathroom buddies:





He'll just have to keep me company here at the computer(s). Yeah, I'm working at two at the same time tonight. If only I had an extra pair of hands and a router to split my Internet connection!


- posted by laurie @ 4/08/2003 08:36:00 PM (0) comments

Monday, April 07, 2003

 

Randomness, because it's late:

1. Reminder to self and others that I semi-maintain a blog that has more to do with research stuff at emergence.

2. I am, scary monsters, the top Laurie Johnson (or was, anyway) on MSN Search. Eek! Johnson anonymity is, uh, gone? Referrer logs are a mixed blessing, I suppose.

3. someone recently arrived here from a page that has no apparent active links, and yet was listed as the referring url. Anyone want to explain that one?

4. The copyright forum was cool. I wish I had been able to go to the Loring after. But knowming me I would have ducked into a corner and not really talked to anyone, anyway, so my time was better spent at home.

5. Shameful disclosure: I had Burger King today. And then Eric brougt home some hot dogs - kosher, but still - and i had one of those. I really don't eat beef unless it's something like a really good filet mignon. Bad Laurie, but oh, the burger and fries were yummy.

6. I'm beat. Psych of Language looms in the near future. Hey, what the hell is noise masking, and why would it prove anything about semantic processing? And why do some people cling so tenaciously to nativist, modular models of language processing? Oh, happy am I that I have not been subjected to too awfully much Chomsky in the course of my life! Such theories, featuring nativist and universalist arguments, really get my social-constructivist/cutural studies feathers all ruffled.

- posted by laurie @ 4/07/2003 11:29:00 PM (0) comments

Sunday, April 06, 2003

 

Oh! Oh! One more thing: tomorrow I get to go see Siva Vaidhyanathan and some other folks battle it out over copyright. Yay! I'm so very excited! Now, can I bring the duck with me to the forum?

I'm only kidding. Ok, sort of kidding.

- posted by laurie @ 4/06/2003 07:35:00 PM (0) comments

 

What a bummer of a post that last one was. Sad, very sad. I'm not quite there any more, in part because I went and discovered the b-day present that two cool friends hid in my office . . . a duck. Oh, but not just any duck, oh no! I have to take a picture and put it up here - it's a black duckie with purple anarcho-punk scrawlings all over its little squeaky body. In all of my time-wasting travels across the internet in search of cute, cute little ducks, I have never seen this one. Devil duck, yes. Attitude duck trio of Pissy, Prissy and Sissy, yes. Grey duck with black, piereced bill, yes. But never ever have I ever seen this one before. Happy Laurie. It takes so little, most of the time. :) I really am a woman obsessed. And damn it, I really do need more duckies in the bathroom, regardless of what some people (ahem, Eric!) may think.

- posted by laurie @ 4/06/2003 07:33:00 PM (0) comments

 

I was in a good mood, and then I checked out Google News. In addition to war news (including accounts of Kurds killed accidentally by American troops), a massacre in Congo is a top international news item. One story: UN Told of Massacre in Congo (washingtonpost.com).

Sometimes the world makes me want to cry. Really. As humans, we seem to be best at killing one another and at hating. It just seems very shameful to me - not quite the right word, but it's the closest I can come to expressing what I mean right now.

- posted by laurie @ 4/06/2003 11:44:00 AM (0) comments

 

Two rhetorically oriented finds via EatonWeb: The Better Rhetor and You Got Style. The first is a more politically oriented blog, the latter is very much centered on rhetoric and literature. On first glance, they both seem to be good reads and good resources for the rhet geeks out there in blogland.

Things to do. So many. Must go now! Hugs to everyone (I'm in a good mood today, for some inexplicable reason!).

- posted by laurie @ 4/06/2003 10:55:00 AM (0) comments

Saturday, April 05, 2003

 

Mall action today. I always feel so weird at the Mall of Americas, or any other mall, after I have been inside for about an hour. Perhaps the recirculated air, perhaps the overwhelming sensory information, who knows? Anyway, shopping was followed up with really yummy boneless hot wings and a beer in St Paul. I really enjoyed the evening. I still really find it novel to have a good group of female friends. Anywy, I am actually sleepy, and Eric just got home, so I am going to go spend some time with the honey, then sleep.

Remember to spring forward!

- posted by laurie @ 4/05/2003 09:50:00 PM (0) comments

Friday, April 04, 2003

 

Lindsay posted her answers to this week's Friday Five last night, reminding me that I haven't done one in months! I will take a brief break from transcribing my observation notes from my first research project observation session in order to answer them - here goes . . .

1. How many houses/apartments have you lived in throughout your life?
Fourteen, I think, but that's not including my college dorm and my dorm/group hose from when I lived in Spain or the houses my parents had during non-custodial periods - which I spent long vacations at but can't really consider places that I "lived." I honestly don't know the purchase date of one of those houses well enough to say whether or not I ever "lived" there or just vacationed.

2. Which was your favorite and why?
That's so hard to say: my Dad's current house is this huge custom-built thing that backs on a canyon, and it has some very beautiful fetures and a gorgeous view. I also think fondly of "the house on Chilton," the house where I lived for eight years, the longest I have ever in my life lived any one place. That house, more than any place, was home to me. I grew up there, knew the neighborhood and the neighbors, and had a lot of fun times while living in that house, and I think that makes it my favorite.

3. Do you find moving house more exciting or stressful? Why?
Oh god, stressful. I would do anything anything anything to be able to stay in one place for the whole time I am here in Minnesota. I am sick unto death of moving every damn year. Eric and I had a nice three-years-in-one-place stretch in Maryland, but other than that, I've moved every 6 months to a year since I was 17. I bet it averages out to about one move a year from age twelve to the present. And when mom moved out of her apartment into the nursing home (she's got MS, and it progressed to where she needed that level of care by the time I was 20) she gave me all of her stuff. Furniture, baby stuff, family trinkets and so on. I have so much junk, so many books, and so much furniture that I dread moving. Of course, me with the bad back and the bad shoulder, I just pack it all - Eric the big, strong husband has to lug it all from place to place.

4. What's more important, location or price?
I'm in graduate school and Eric works retail. Price. Period. Hands down, no questions.

5. What features does your dream house have (pool, spa bath, big yard, etc.)?
All of the above? Lots of bedrooms - one for the study, one for the computer/gaming room, one for the kitties :), one for the baby (no heart attacks please - I meant at a LATER point). I also want a porch on the front and a patio or deck on the back, and a tree-enclosed back yard like the "house on Chilton" had. That rocked. Definitely in general enough room for doggies, kitties, children, and all of the associated toys. Geez, should I sign up for the white picket fence and the gingham curtains now, or what?

- posted by laurie @ 4/04/2003 11:55:00 AM (0) comments

Thursday, April 03, 2003

 

I had a good birthday! It's over, though festivities will continue tomorrow. I got calls and greetings from a nice range of friends old and new, as well as all of the family members (including a really funny message from my brother-in-law). Dinner was yummy, and though I have a billion things to do and need to be awake enough to do observations at my research site at 8:30 tomorrow AM, Eric and I rented and watched "My Big Fat Greek Wedding." Neither of us had seen it before, and we both enjoyed it!

All rightie, I'm printing off informed consent forms and then going to bed with Lessig's The Future of Ideas for a little bedtime reading.

Hey friends and fam, I love you guys! I'm a lucky, lucky woman, to have such good friends, supportive family members, and, of course, the most wonderful husband ever! Geting sappy again, sorry! 'Night!

- posted by laurie @ 4/03/2003 09:57:00 PM (0) comments

 

For the IP-inclined: RollingStone.com: News: White Stripes May Face Suit. How interesting, especially considering the round of "ought this be legal" we played at the beginning of Logie's Rhetoric, Intellectual Property, Piracy, and the Internet class. The discussion centered around the RatherGood Punk Kittens. So, RatherGood is inforinging on a work which is currently being investigated as an infringing work - and though the White Stripes appear to know about and at least tolerate the Punk Kittens ( previous incarnation of their website featured a punk kitten rockin' out), it seems unlikely that the White Stripes will receive such tolerant treatment, themselves. It figures.

- posted by laurie @ 4/03/2003 06:41:00 AM (0) comments

Wednesday, April 02, 2003

 

Look! Rate-My-Tattoo. From Who Needs Oxygen.net. Some cool pictures of tattoos. Everyone needs more ink . . . wait, ok, maybe not everyone.

- posted by laurie @ 4/02/2003 07:43:00 PM (0) comments

 

My blog ate my homework . . .

Not really, but it did eat yet another blog post yesterday. At least I had no template trouble, like everyone else in the world did yesterday! Anyone know if that was a hack or some weird server hiccough, or what?

Anyway, Eric and I went on training walk #1 yesterday. We walked for about an hour, but got slightly less than three miles of walking done. I feel, as my little imood icon says, achy. Have for the last few days now.

I have to go hit the shower and get to campus, where I have some things I have to get tone just sitting there waiting for me. Then I have to come back here and get done the things I have to get done here. Blech.

Tomorrow is my birthday. Yay! I will spend it in class and then working on my research project. Perhaps I shoudl resign myself to sucky birthdays, it would be easier that way.

I end on a random note, as usual: a plug for a blog I like to read. Caveat Lector always has something good, but two recent posts caught my attention. This post links to the author's page about grad school which, in many ways, I wish I had come across when I was going through the application process. I might have been too arrogant or naive to appreciate it at that point, but I sure as hell appreciate it now. The second post should strike a chord with the UMN Department of Rhetoric readers, especially those who, like me, are doing the 8011/12 sequence this year. Participant observation? Being the user? The odd and interesting background described in the first proposal? This is reminding me of Bernadette Longo's Spurious Coin, with hints of Winsor. And of course the ethnography and participant observation makes me think of Dr. Berkenkotter and of the Berkenkotter and Huckin book.

And now I must go get ready to leave the house. It's a beautiful day: hopefully I can get through with the campus stuff soon so I can have some ouside time. Maybe another walk is in order. Today is supposed to be a "day off" according to the training schedule, but it's so nice out and I didn't walk the suggested four miles yesterday. Then again, I have five million things to do - do I have time for an hour-long walk? We'll see. . .

- posted by laurie @ 4/02/2003 12:07:00 PM (0) comments

Tuesday, April 01, 2003

 

I have a whole host of random things to blog about and, considering insomnia hit me like a gallon of espresso early this morning (went to bed at 2 am and awoke, finally and irrevocably, a bit before 5 am), I have the time to do so. I'm a bit punchy, though, so excuse spelling and randomness. I'll be in fine shape by the time my Psych of Language class gets out at 11!

Ok, getting started: I already got exactly what I wanted for my birthday, even though I don't officially enter the Late Twenties until Thursday. Eric gave me my presents early: a French press and a replacement wedding ring. It's really the latter that I am so excited about! I managed to lose mine about a year ago (we think down the bathroom sink, with the aid of evil-kitty-Tybalt, who is currently in the doghouse for attacking full glasses of water in two separate mini-flood episodes yestersday). The new band is pretty simple, and looks a lot like Eric's band. I love it! I'm so happy to have a wedding band again.

I also got birthday presents from Jessica: yummy Dirty Girl soaps and pretty sparkly powder. I have revised my earlier opinion: I decided a few years ago that I was too old for such silliness. I think it was going to graduate school and being little-fish-big-pond-bottom-of-the-heap again, but I got a bit conservative in dress and comportment. Perhaps it's the new haircut or renewed sense of confidence or determination that grad school will not grind me down, but I've been rebelling against the boring me that has been hanging around for about the last three years. I've been denying the freak within, and that's just a)no good and b)no fun. Besides, it doesn't really work.

I have also gotten myself some things already - kinda but not really for my birthday. I am really trying to take care of my body and spirit and not neglect them in favor of developing my mind. I have to say here that I love bell hooks, who reminds me over and over again that the body/mind split is not healthy. So, I got the Living Arts AM/PM Yoga set as well as the nifty little starter yoga kit, complete with mat, blocks, and strap. As soon as I get done writing this post, I am going to go do the AM workout for the second day running. We'll see how long this keeps up, but it actually made me feel really good yesterday morning, and I think it will be a good compliment to my physical therapy exercises, which do seem to be helping my back and shoulder a lot.

I also got a pedometer, because I am going into training. For what, you ask? Well, for the MS Challenge Walk. I haven't registered yet, but do plan to soon. September 20-22, I'll be walking 50 miles to raise awareness about MS and to raise money for research and MS Society local and national programs. Chances are, I'll be asking some of the readers of this blog to chip in a few bones, but it is for an excellent cause. MS can be devastating to individuals and their families, but the MS society can reduce this to some extent. I'm speaking from experience here, because (for those who don't know) my mom has MS. The MS society has helped her out quite a bit (and they have helped the family somewhat, as well), and I think it's time for me to give a bit back. Besides, walking about 15 miles a week during training (in addition to the yoga and the aerobic stuff I try to do regularly already and the weights I do infrequently at best) should get me in shape, just in time for another long Minnesota winter, of course!

Well, if I am to have coffee after doing yoga and still make it to class on time, I should get going. Hope I stay awake through my class!

- posted by laurie @ 4/01/2003 05:49:00 AM (0) comments