Tuesday, August 29, 2006

It seemed like a good idea at the time...

Lesson learned: Never EVER let twelve one-year olds paint with shaving cream at once! You'll be sorry if you do...

I learned today that to "get pissed" in the UK means to get drunk, and to get "knocked up" means to get woken up. So if you get pissed and in the morning find yourself knocked up by someone, it's a good thing! And I realized that I am going to effing DIE on the plane because now I can't carry my hand sanitizer with me!!! Do you know how GERMIE those planes are?? I wonder if they'll let me take alcohol towelettes.... ew, and do you realize I'm going to reek when I get off that thing? seriously, they want me to go how long without deoderant, perfume, or toothpaste??? God I hate terrorists! You know it could all be a marketing ploy to get you to buy those items from the airport as soon as you step off the plane.... I don't think the terrorists exist hehe.

I also learned that oil burns do in fact hurt, even if they don't hurt for the first day or so.

Oh, and I learned how to say "binkie" in spanish, but I've already forgotten. Puchon, I think...

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Onward and Upward

It's pretty strange not going back to class this week. It's actually almost kind of depressing. Especially since I don't even have a diploma, yet I'm done. It's weird... I mean, just weird. I'm going to miss my daily cup of tea with soy milk and sugar-in-the-raw from Jazzman's in the student center; I'm going to miss vying in ques to get computer time between classes; I'm going to miss giving tours, and working out at the rec center, and being in student organizations; I'll miss DuBois, and all-day study sessions at Susan's; I'll miss tutoring seven ideas; I'll miss the student discount (that I never used) for Apple and Dell; I'll miss being a student...

But, it's not like I'm never going to be on campus. I'll still be working on the research that I helped with last year. There's lots to be done with the data we worked so hard to collect. Even though it will only be one day a week, it will be nice to keep in touch with acedemia; especially since I will be taking a year or two off before going back to grad school.

In addition, I have my two paying jobs that should keep me busy. I'm now working a full schedule at Childtime, and have the feeling they are going to ask me next month to be the lead teacher again (although I think I am going to turn them down); I'm not being conceited about this, they've already discussed it with me. I also just got a weekend and evening job at the small Borders in Summit Mall (this is just a tiny one, that used to be Waldens before Borders bought that company, not one of the big stores) and everyone there seems to be super nice. I'm worried though because although I've worked in retail (at the music store in Texas) I've never had to meet a quota before. And it's not as simple as "sell X number of books during a three hour shift." A certain percentage of sales has to be Border's members sales, and a certain percentage has to be multiple item purchases.. I hope I can meet them, but then my managers at Holze's Music as well as at Howie's Pizza told me that I'm a wonderful salesperson, so we'll see. Aaron says I'm good at selling stuff because I'm a people person... I haven't felt much like a people person lately though.

I haven't started the Borders job yet, and it is nice to only have to worry about one job for now. I actually have free time. You know, to read and sleep and eat and finally unpack my things from when I moved. I'll probably work on my scrapbooks this week too. This weekend was SO amazingly relaxing. I didn't have to worry about anything; I just had a fun time with my friends. I went to Geauga Lake (an amusement park that is now owned by cedar point, but has been here since I can remember- kind of like Kennywood in Pittsburgh.) It was so amazing to be carefree. We went on all the coasters and all the spinny/flying rides. We had a picnic lunch, and just had a really relaxing time. The whole deal cost the four of us a total of 32 dollars ($20 admission since we were there with a larger group and $12 for the fudge that we splurged on) It was nice not to worry about homework or nearly ex-husbands or money or boyfriends.. the only worry I had was the giant hill I was about to drop down :) I wish everyday could be like that.

Saturday, August 26, 2006


I am the biggest geek in the world :p

Thursday, August 24, 2006

My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nine.... dwarf planets?

That's right. Children are going to have to use a different mnemonic device to help them memorize the order of the eight planets of our solar system. Pluto has been demoted. We always knew that pluto is weird. It is way smaller than the other planets, less spherical, and the biggest conundry is that it has its own orbital plane. I've wondered several times in the past why it is even considered a planet, when it is so different from everything else that we call "planet". Apparantly the scientific community thought I was onto something, because just this week there was a vote by the International Astronomical Union on a more complete definition of the word "planet." This new definition excludes objects such as pluto as well as other recently discovered objects (which are very similar to pluto) This is what they decided:

Resolution 5A is the principal definition for the IAU usage of "planet" and related terms.Resolution 6A creates for IAU usage a new class of objects, for which Pluto is the prototype. The IAU will set up a process to name these objects.IAU Resolution: Definition of a Planet in the Solar SystemContemporary observations are changing our understanding of planetary systems, and it is important that our nomenclature for objects reflect our current understanding. This applies, in particular, to the designation 'planets'. The word 'planet' originally described 'wanderers' that were known only as moving lights in the sky. Recent discoveries lead us to create a new definition, which we can make using currently available scientific information.RESOLUTION 5AThe IAU therefore resolves that "planets" and other bodies in our Solar System be defined into three distinct categories in the following way:(1) A "planet"1 is a celestial body that (a) is in orbit around the Sun, (b) has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it assumes a hydrostatic equilibrium (nearly round) shape, and (c) has cleared the neighbourhood around its orbit.(2) A "dwarf planet" is a celestial body that (a) is in orbit around the Sun, (b) has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it assumes a hydrostatic equilibrium (nearly round) shape2 , (c) has not cleared the neighbourhood around its orbit, and (d) is not a satellite.(3) All other objects3 except satellites orbiting the Sun shall be referred to collectively as "Small Solar-System Bodies".
1The eight planets are: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune.2An IAU process will be established to assign borderline objects into either dwarf planet and other categories.3These currently include most of the Solar System asteroids, most Trans-Neptunian Objects (TNOs), comets, and other small bodies.
IAU Resolution: PlutoRESOLUTION 6AThe IAU further resolves:Pluto is a "dwarf planet" by the above definition and is recognized as the prototype of a new category of trans-Neptunian objects.1

A probe is currently on its way to pluto to collect more information about these objects laying in the outskirts of our solar system. By the way, I like the word "trans-neptunian"; they made up a word in order to make the definition of an existing word less vague.. great. Except sometimes Pluto orbits closer to the sun than Neptune, so maybe they'll have to revise this one too!*sigh* life was so much simpler before the geeks started to rule the world!

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Phenomenal woman? That's me!

When I was in speech and debate competitions, my favorite category was prose and poetry reading (in texas, you either read prose, or you read poetry- you never combine, but in Ohio you create a mosaic of both prose and poetry pieces.. winning or losing a competition sometimes lies in the way you've pieced it together.) Every season there were one or two pieces that were severly over-read. For quite a while that piece was "Phenomenal Woman" by Maya Angelou. Just about every woman read it, and I even saw a couple of guys do it. It seemed as though in every round of every competition, that poem would be read at least once. I secretly love this poem. When I hear it I groan and roll my eyes and feel the need to explain how many "frickin" times I had to hear it, but I love it. Especially right now. It reminds me that I don't need a man to make me phenomenal... I don't need anyone, and in fact I can't rely on someone to make me feel phenomenal... that power is mine and mine alone, and no relationship (even when it seems perfect) can make me feel that way. Only me. So, here it is
by Maya Angelou
Pretty women wonder where my secret lies

I'm not cute or built to suit a model's fashion size
But when I start to tell them
They think I'm telling lies.
I say
It's in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips
The stride of my steps
The curl of my lips.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman
That's me.
I walk into a room

Just as cool as you please
And to a man
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees
Then they swarm around me
A hive of honey bees.
I say
It's the fire in my eyes
And the flash of my teeth
The swing of my waist
And the joy in my feet.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman
That's me.
Men themselves have wondered

What they see in me
They try so much
But they can't touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can't see.
I say
It's in the arch of my back
The sun of my smile
The ride of my breasts
The grace of my style.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman
That's me.
Now you understand

Just why my head's not bowed
I don't shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say It's in the click of my heels
The bend of my hair
The palm of my hand
The need for my care.
'Cause I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman
That's me.

The Adventures of Jess and Steve

See car
See car parked
See car towed

See Steve
See Steve walk
see mugger take Steve's valuables

See ex
See ex get mad
See ex call debit card in stolen, stranding Jess and Steve in Chicago with no car and no money.

I think Steve hates Chicago now...

Wednesday, August 16, 2006


One thing I like the most about kids is their simplistic view of life, the universe, and everything. There is a nine year old girl... young lady... who helps me in the afternoons in the nursury. She helps do simple tasks like sanitizing the toys and changing crib sheets.She says she likes to help because she wants to get a job at a day nursury when she is old enough, but I think the real reason is that she wants to talk to someone who will at least try to understand her. Trouble seems to find her, and to her it seems like the other teachers at the center are resentful of her and her sisters. This is a conversation that I had with her last week when we were talking about our favorite show in the universe, Law and Order.

Girl: How long do you have to go to school to be a lawyer?
Me: Well, if you work hard enough, maybe six years, but more likely eight. And there's a huge test you have to pass too, and for some people that takes longer.
Girl: Eight years?? Is a lawyer a normal job?
Me: Normal?? what do you mean, normal??
Girl:... well... I mean most people aren't normal... I want to have a daughter. I don't want to work too much. Do lawyers have to work a long time or can they come home sometimes to see their daughter?
Me: Well, I don't know. I guess it depends on what kind of a lawyer you are and how much work you take on.
Girl: what kind of lawyer?? what kinds are there???
Me: well, you know like on the show there are prosecuting attorneys- the guys who try to prove that the person did it- and there are defense lawyers- the guys who try to prove the the person didn't do it... (I rattled off some other jobs lawyers specialize themselves in...)
Girl: Oh, yeah... well I just want to be the kind of lawyer who tells the truth... what kind of lawyer is that called?

In my mind, I was thinking "It's called a fictional lawyer" but I had to hold back my smirk to avoid hurting her feelings. Her esteem is already pretty low. But how do you explain to a nine year old the inner workings of our so-called "Justice" system without shattering her faith in the one virtue she holds dear: truth. I'm very careful about the political ideals that I convey to the children I work with. I try to stay as much in the neutral area as possible. I don't want to program their minds, but I want them to discover the ideas for themself.. not to mention, politics is a bit out of my scope when it comes to the center.. I mean, c'mon these are kids. I tried to explain to her that nobody knows the truth except for the person being accused, and it's the lawyers jobs to figure out how possible each side of the story is, but sometimes the lawyers think that proving their side and winning is the most important thing, even if it isn't really the truth. After this long and detailed explanation that was followed by a series of other questions, I wished that I could go back to being nine, where things were as simple as merely telling the truth or not telling the truth.....

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Dwelling on Sense Objects

Bhagavad Gita 2.62-2.71
If a man keeps dwelling on sense-objects
attatchment to them arises;
from attatchment, desire flares up;
from desire, anger is born;
from anger, confusion follows;
from confusion, weakness of memory;
weak memory- weak understanding;
weak understanding- ruin.
But the man who is self-controlled,
who meets the objects of the senses
with neither craving nor aversion,
will attain serenity at last.
In serenity, all his sorrows
disappear at once, forever;
when his heart has become serene,
his understanding is steadfast.
The undisciplined have no wisdom'
no one-pointed concentration;
with no concentration, no peace;
with no peace, where can joy be?
When the mind constantly runs
after wandering senses,
it drives away wisdom, like the wind
blowing a ship off course.
And so, Arjuna, when someone
is able to withdraw his senses
from the very object of sensation,
that man is of firm wisdom.
In the night of all beings, the wise man
sees only the radiance of the Self;
but the sense-world where all beings wake,
for him is as dark as night.
The man whom desires enter
as rivers flow into the sea,
filled yet always unmoving-
that man finds perfect peace.
Abandoning all desires,
acting without craving, free
from all thoughts of "I" and "Mine,"
that man finds utter peace.

Friday, August 04, 2006

"Concoctions from Everyday Life"

Wow, I've been posting a lot lately. Never a dull moment in the life, let me tell you...

I've been going through much of my old belongings while organizing everything in my new room.. you know the types of things; those stupid little momentos from high school like yearbooks, old college notebooks filled with research papers that I just keep saying "I'll just hold onto these... I found a book of poetry put together by myself and some of my classmates. My high school felt the need to enrich students with cultural opportunities, so we often had month long residencies in poetry, dance, and song-writing. The book, titled Concoctions from Everyday Life was created during one such residency. It's not a particularly great book, and everytime I see it I think of throwing it out but couldn't stand the thought of throwing out the poetry of some of my best high school friends, so I decided to rip out the poems I wanted and throw the excess away. I want to share two poems from the book. One of them was written by my residency group during a brainstorming session, and the other was written by me. (I actually wrote TONS of poetry in highschool, some of which isn't too bad... if you want to see it ask me about it!) (editing note: Blogspot apparantly doesn't like it when I try to seperate the lines, so until I have the time to edit the html to create spaces, // will be used to seperate each stanza)

This one was written by the group about our wonderful hometown, Kent OH. It's kind of cheesey, but I like it because now so much has changed that many of what we wrote about no longer describes Kent. It's a reminder of all the little things we used to take comfort in:

Song of Kent
Meditate for a moment
This is a place where
ideas originate
from the vibrant minds
just passing through
Playing on sidewalks cracked
Playing on Kent State grass
Fraternity boys dancing in their underwear
From Brady Lake to Sugarbush Knolls
East side, West side, Kent's too small to divide
One dollar movies
and railroad tracks
walking with friends
and no destination
So many windows
to shops and to souls
Many faces in
downtown on halloween
Drinking water is alright
under bright traffic lights
Muddy polluted waters of the cuyahoga
Middle school productions
and Friendly's restaurant
Old masonic temple with
myths growing like weeds
Music lives everywhere
art lives around the corner
sister and brother, they go hand in hand
Get crew cuts at low prices
make lots of honest friends
educated people
with beer bellies
Meditate for a moment
enter into the warm, happy
peaceful music
song of Kent
Ok, now this is the one I wrote. No laughing... It's kind of freaky that I wrote this before the terrorist attacks on the world trade center, but I think I was actually writing in reaction to bombing Bosnia (I don't remember, it was a long time ago) Someone reading it now would think it is about the falling of the towers, but it was written in '98:
The Beautiful
The old woman
breathes the whisper of a prayer.
Elegantly poised,
she stares at the shoreline
taking it in.
Her pale green face
is wretched in anguish
as she silently cries out
the thunderous roar
of passive rage.
Her children weep uncontrollably
moaning their horror,
looking to their fallen mother
as she stands rigid,
As the white smoke clears
from over crystal blue ocean,
she can see a crimson ribbon
running from coast to coast.
she will not be crippled.
she will not be lamed;
this weary mother
who stands, gazing.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Another shitty day

Why does my life seem like it is full of days when I am up shit creek???

I am almost positive I failed my midterm for Italian. All of the tenses use the same endings for different persons, and I can't figure out when to use what. If anyone can help me out with this, please let me know because I'm finding out what it is like to be the 'stupid kid' in class and I don't like it... I'm used to being the geek who ruins the curve....

I still haven't been able to finish moving. All of my stuff is out of my house, as I legally had to be out of there by midnight on Monday, but half of it is in my car and the other half is in a pile on my bedroom floor. As you can imagine, this is driving me insane.

I was completely excited about purchasing my first international airline ticket with British Airways. I found a great deal on a flight and decided to go for it and figure the rest out later, and when I clicked on the button to finalize the purchase, it said that there was an error, and my flight may or may not have been booked, so I have to call and find out. I also realized that I have my maiden name on my passport, and it is too late to change if I need to. I will only have to change it back soon anyway, so I am hoping to avoid that.

also apparantly anyone/thing with a penis has joined a coalition against me. It must be Boys Against Jessica (BAJ) recruiting day or something. Even Noah, one of my favorites in the nursery (I've cared for his two older brothers as well, so I feel a special bond with him and his family) BIT me today! for no reason, just grabbed my finger and bit it.... The man who made a pledge to "honor and cherish" me called (for the second time this week.. it's only teusday) just to give me my daily f*** you report, and the other boys in my life are doing a damn good job of making me feel pretty low. (I know all of you read this.. ahem erik.. and yes this is a guilt trip..ahem erik... for being a pain in the ass when all I needed was for you to listen instead of saying "Oh, Jess is sad, let's yell at her about things that she already feels she has no control over")

I guess I actually have made the decision to look for an apartment in Pittsburgh, provided that I pass this class and graduate. I can't live with my parents, and every time I start to feel like there is something here worth staying around here for, the floor seems to drop out. I guess I just really want to get away.

Dave Matthews is tomorrow; I'm hoping that nothing goes wrong when I try to get my ticket for that. I'm kind of sad that I couldn't find anyone to go with me, but I'm happy to do something that has nothing to do with babies or italian or boys for a while (well.. I guess dave matthews is a boy, but I don't have to deal with him because he'll be far away on stage)

In case you are wondering, yes I feel pretty shitty, and no I don't want a cookie (although if you have any phish phud ben and jerry's I'd gladly indulge...)