Snow Blood and Coal
Friday, April 30, 2004
Aight. I don't usually do quizzes, but I think that this one is funny and a little bit scary. Perhaps it's time to abandon my 2003 New Years resolution and start drinking a little bit less:
I'M 104 PROOF. HOW DRUNK ARE YOU?
Thursday, April 29, 2004
So today, I went and took the Indiana University Human Subjects certification exam. I passed with a 90%. To pass, really, all I needed was a whopping 70%--a rating of moderately ethical--but I showed them how good and upstanding I really am. Of course the questions were all about what kinds of consent you need to take blood from a subject or whether you have to tell them before you test drugs on them, but you know. I guess it could apply to me. Now that I know that I can slip my subjects drugs, maybe I'll make it part of my research plan...
Anyway, in other news, I have a new email address. I'll send a notification email out to everybody as soon as I can, but after much consideration, I've decided to go with email@example.com. I know that it's awkward and kind of crappy, but it's an address that's semi-permanent, and I don't want another problem like I'm having with sbcglobal where I lose the address when I cancel the account.
Wednesday, April 28, 2004
Alright. Finished Bluebeard. Really good. The most obvious connection to the fairy tale isthat the main character has something hidden in his barn and has a young woman (a number of them, actually) staying with him and has some ex-wives and dead wives. That's not the only connection, though. There is another bluebeard-like story that the main character tells about a man with whom he had a strange professional relationship that is more vague, but in fact much more like the Grimms' version than the first story. Hint: the secret chamber here is the museum of modern art in New York. Eerie? Huh? Huh? There are some other interesting fairy tale connections too, though. There are two explicit references to the motif in AT480 where gems fall from the mouth of the kind girl. In one, it's only the kind girl that we see, and in the other, it's contrasted to what might fall out of the mouth of the unkind girl--putrifaction. Overall, I must say, interesting book, well worth a read, and makes me want to read the Margaret Atwood and Angela Carter versions of the thing...
In other news, thanks to blogger, I now have a gmail account. Gmail doesn't seem to do a whole lot that's interesting yet, but I figure that when I lose my sbcglobal account, which should be next month, I'm going to switch over. At least I have a good account name: adam.zolkover. Definitely more memorable than the indiana.edu account that I was going to use (azolkove). The problem is that there is no POP3 support yet. It's only web mail. But I think that I can live with that. The other problem is that it doesn't officially support Safari--my web browser--but it's supposed to work 99% of the time with it, and besides, I really like firefox and camino as well, so I may just switch web browsers again. Safari, I think, is slightly faster than either of the others, but the others are more standards compliant. So we'll see... All this reminds me that I should start figuring out what I am going to do when I move...
Moving Up in Academia and other essays on indoor transportation.
Who would have thought that I could write nearly six thousand words on the interior of an elevator? But I have. And it ain't not half bad.
Now all I need to do is touch up my interview project for Henry, turn everything in, and all that's left is one looming paper.
Tuesday, April 27, 2004
Long time no.
Sorry for the brief pause between updates, but much has been going on. None of it interesting, but much has been going on. Lets see... Sarah and I have been reading Eats Shoots and Leaves. I've been reading Bluebeard by Kurt Vonnegut, which is really freaking good and deals with the connections to the fairy tale in an interesting and roundabout way. I've also been writing furiously. I turned in everything for Pravina today, then tomorrow, hopefully, I'll turn in everything for Henry. I'm pretty much done with my interview thing for him, and all I need to do is edit my observation thing one more time, and I'll be done with that too. I can do that in the morning then turn it in. Then all that's left is my independent study paper, which I think I can finish if I get writing on thursday. Hopefully it'll be done by monday or tuesday, but technically, I think that I have until friday to finish it, so I'm not too worried.
Sunday, April 25, 2004
So last night, Sarah and I went to The Irish Lion for dinner. Very cool place. A bit on the pricey side, but not really as much as you'd think. Sarah had a leg of lamb dish which was very good, but on the dinner menu, and thus expensive. I had Mutton Pie from the bar menu which was about half of the price, and I think better. Also, they had pretty cheap pints of good beer there, and, as I discovered Poteen. I'm not sure of the authenticity of the Poteen, but it was there nonetheless, and definitely interesting and novel to drink.
I don't know how I'd do it, but what I'd really like is to get the folklore happy hour people to move over to the Irish Lion next year. I think that it'd be a better atmosphere, and it's definitely cheaper drink and better food that, depending on what you get, isn't terribly more expensive. Of course it's slightly less convenient to the folklore building, but what's an extra three or four blocks, anyway?
Saturday, April 24, 2004
Today has been an interesting day so far. I got up, ate, bathed, and went straight to the library where I just completed the third part of my observation project (yay! Done!). Now all that's left for me to do is to write the thing up. I need to write a 3+ page summary of my third observation, then draw up some conclusions for the project, then rewrite (yes, one more time) my paper for Henry's class about the observation of space. This time I know what I want to do, though, I think. So it won't take that long. I figure that today, I'll try and finish everything for Pravina's class (the first two things), and tomorrow, I'll take care of Henry's. Then I'll be done and things will be good and all that will be left is the folklore and literature paper, which I'm dreading (another rewrite), but which I think won't take me astonishingly long either. I do have a better idea of what I want to say for that too, after all...
Oh yeah. And how I loath people who use this library. Western Folklore 52, which is basically Toward New Perspectives In Folklore 20 years later, and which I have been recommending around but have never read myself, has been stolen from the library. Yes. It is officially categorized as "MISSING." What kind of terrible person steals a helpless journal from a library? The bastard. I guess the kind that can't check it out. The thing is that now I have a problem. Since I can't get it online either, I have no way to read it through, and I really really want to. Maybe I can interlibrary loan it, but that'd take a while. On the bright side, if I did that, it might mean that they might copy it for me, which would mean having my own, all for myself. And that would be cool.
Oh yeah. And one last thing. Last night, Sarah and I started reading Eats shoots and leaves together. I can't recommend this book enough. It's a 300 page rant about the terrible sad state of English punctuation. Totally recommend. Very cool stuff.
Anyway, back to research.
Friday, April 23, 2004
O My God!
Go to IMDB and check out The Brothers Grimm. This is Terry Gilliam's next movie, and it's going to be awful. "Will" and "Jake" Grimm played by Heath Ledger and Matt Damon? The Grimm's as itinerant swindlers, going from town to town? What the hell? I've always maintained that the lives of the Grimms would make a good movie, but I meant their actual lives. This... I don't know what to say.
On the other hand, it is Terry Gilliam, and he has given us a lot of good stuff in the past. So it may be smart and fun and interestingly satirical and I may have just misjudged it. I doubt that, however.
I guess I'll just have to see it.
Monday, April 19, 2004
Today I thought that I was going to finish my observations at the library and get some writing done, but I'm really not feeling well. For the past two days, I've been getting sick. I've been feeling it at night, though, and not during the day. Today, however, I awoke feeling shitty, and it's stayed with me the entire day so far. I took a walk to the library to get some articles, eat some lunch, and observe the elevators. I've done the first two already, and I'm contemplating whether to do the third.
In favor: It'd be a little bit less to do later, it just requires sitting in the library lobby, not in the elevator itself, I don't really feel like moping around at home, or writing my folklore in literature paper right now.
Against: I feel shitty and want to take a nap, I dread doing these things these days, I'm feeling very self-conscious right now, my shoulder hurts from sleeping on it funny, if I go home now, maybe I can make it before it starts to rain.
Anyway, you see the dilemma. There are really good reasons on both sides here. Maybe what I'll do is do one of the two rounds of observations, then leave, then finish the other round tomorrow. And maybe once I get home and nap, I'll feel up to doing some more writing. I think that part of it is that I'm probably going to have to cut big chunk of what I wrote yesterday because it's just not relevant. In fact, it's pretty much just filler. Sucks, huh?
Sunday, April 18, 2004
So yesterday I managed to write about three and a half pages of this paper. Basically, an introduction. Today, I think that I can write about twice that, but it'll never happen unless I manage to get off my ass. Basically, I need to talk about discipline creation, and I'd like to get up to the point in my outline where I'm starting to talk about how the article I'm writing about fits in... Not too bad. Like I said, five or six pages.
Saturday, April 17, 2004
Kill Bill! [revisited]
Alright. So I saw Kill Bill Volume 2 last night. Very cool. Very very cool. I think that I didn't like it as well as the first one, but my favorite scenes out of the whole thing come from it. Also, I think that as far as connections to popular culture goes, the second one was a little bit more complex. More references to interesting things like 70s TV shows and movies, but also with projects related to specific actors in the movie like Daryl Hanna and David Carodine. Anyway, though, the point is that it was really interesting and well put together, and I'm glad I saw it and can't wait to get the sound track. Oh yeah. And speaking of the soundtrack, at the end of the movie, they play this song by Shivaree, a band that I really like, over the credits. Hopefully that's on there...
Anyway, yes, today is my birthday. So what am I going to do that's special? I'm going to spend the entire day writing my folklore and literature paper. And hopefully, I'm going to get through the introduction and most of my section on Discipline creation--about 10 pages. Yesterday I managed a pretty detailed outline of topics and subtopics, and today I'm kind of stoked, because I think that I can actually do this. Any draft I do might suck, but at least it will be a draft that I can go back and edit. Because at this rate, I'll have zero to turn in... Well, happy birthday to me.
Thursday, April 15, 2004
Sorry that posting has been a little bit erratic recently, but things have been pretty busy.
Yesterday, I spent the day with my computer at the folklore building beginning to compile quotations so that I can write my folklore and literature paper. I've gone through 90% of my secondary source material, and started to think about what I want from Dorson's own writings. Today, I'm going to go to the library and retrieve a book that I had been forced to return, as well as looking at back issues of the folklore historian, then finish putting quotes together and go to town. Things are looking up on this paper. I have a topical outline of what I want to say, and I think that I can say it. There may be one of two problems. The first, I think, is that I'll have too much to say and the paper will feel like I'm wandering a little bit off topic, and the second is that I won't have enough research to back me up. I'm a bit more concerned about the second potential problem, but I don't really think that it's the case. The argument that I'm making is historical, and so of course I don't have a lot of theoretical sources in my paper. As for other kinds of sources, I have some background historical reading, and then lots of what Dorson wrote. And lord knows that I don't lack for what Dorson wrote...
Anyway, in other news, we bought a second Gamecube controller last night, and so Sarah and I have been playing Gladius--a game that I really didn't like when I was playing it alone, but that is a lot of fun when you play together. I don't think that it's the kind of thing that we'd become addicted to, and it may even make me more productive because having my video game fix that way, I'll stay away from the video baseball which tends to consume me when I'm stressed and eat up all my time.
Anyway, need to get ready for the day, do some reading, then go to the library and read some more, so I'm off to face the day!
Tuesday, April 13, 2004
Some new food things...
So yesterday, I had two interesting cooking experiments. First, I made another attempt at Indian food. Not anything specific. I'm not to that point yet. Just a generic curry with some tofu and vegetables. The first time I made it, it came out the right consistency, but tasted like pasta sauce. The second time I made it, it tasted right, but wasn't gooey enough. This time, I think that it was just right. There was just the right amount of liquid, but still lots of vegetables, and it tasted really good. I was really surprised. Sarah's one criticism was that it was a little bit sour, but that's just because one of my vegetables was asparagus. Next time I'll use broccoli or cauliflower, and things will be even better. Now that I know how to do it, I'll get some practice, then start learning to make actual dishes, I think.
The other thing I made last night was baklava. It's something that I've been wanting to try for a long time and just haven't gotten to. I thought that it would be difficult, and thought it better just to leave it alone. I found out, however, that while time consuming, it's actually really easy. I used store bought Fillo, made my filling out of walnuts that we had around, made the syrup, then put it together. It came together really easily, it was quick to bake, and while it tastes a little bit off because I was out of unsalted butter (salted butter makes it taste americanized for some reason), it's still really good. I was thinking that I would make the kind of baklava that kind of looks like a tiny sandwich, but I looked at the baking stuff I had clean, and opted for the rolled kind. I think that the rolled kind is easier anyway for a first try, and for the most part, it's just as good. Next time, I think that I'll make the sandwich kind, get unsalted butter, a little lemon, and really do it right. Sometime in the near future, I'd also like to make kadaif (the thin semolina noodle nests covered in syrup. They sell the noodles at the local turkish place, and I think that it'd be a lot of fun, and very easy.
Sunday, April 11, 2004
Remember the Alamo...
Or... maybe don't. Certainly, the movie doesn't compel me to do so. Yes. I saw it last night. And O my God! It exceeded even my expectations for bad. The best quote from a review that I saw before I went was "cartoonishly bad". Well that doesn't even begin to describe it. This wasn't even cartoonish. It was just awful. When we left, Sarah commented that they couldn't decide whether to do the larger than life legendary version, or whether they wanted to do something a little more historical. The problem is that it was neither. The historical aspects were all wrong, and worse than that, not even tweaked for entertainment's sake. It was just stupid. From the legendary perspective, they didn't cover much many of the most famous stories about the Alamo that we might have expected. There was no line in the sand, for instance... The only things cartoonish about the movie, it turns out, are Santa Anna, who is like a cross between Yosemite Sam and Khan from Star Trek II, and David "Don't Call Me Davey" Crockett, who sounded something like Huckleberry Hound. I still have a hard time believing it. I say it a lot, but this time for real, it may have been the worst movie I've ever seen.
Anyway, in other news, I got two new albums yesterday. Sink With Kalifornia by Youth Brigade, which is really good, and Old Hands by YMSB which I haven't listened to yet, but I know all the songs and they're really good. I also got a copy of Folklore in the Old Testiment by Frazer, and I'm really excited about that. I've read bits and pieces of this book here and there for a while, but never the whole thing. I'm excited one of these days to do so.
Well... today is a writing day, so I should go off and write. While I'm gone, remember, REMEMBER THE ALAMO!
Thursday, April 08, 2004
We took Lucien to the vet yesterday and found out that he has a mild upper respiratory infection. The doctor gave him two shots--one a decongestant and the other an antibiotic--and sent us home with liquid antibiotics to feed him with his meals. Neither Sarah nor I really wanted to take him, and we both thought that we were just being overly paranoid, but all of yesterday we spent saying how glad we were that we went. Plus this vet is really cool. Much better than the last one we went to. Unlike the last one, I actually trust that this vet wouldn't recommend we do anything that the cat didn't need. The last one, on the other hand, handed us a catalogue of possible medical procedures and told us that we could pick... The only thing now is that the medication is making Lucien a little bit gassy...
In other news, I had a revelation yesterday in Henry's class both about what's wrong with my observation write-up and how to fix it. The way to get it to sound right, it turns out, is to include more of other people's words. I was thinking about why I wasn't quite comfortable with my write-up, and discovered that it's because I'm in my own head the entire time, and even when I describe specific incidents, I always use language like "I remember" or "I imagine". That's great for the general stuff, but what I need is specific stuff to back it up. So I'm going to interview somebody at the physical plant who works on elevators, hopefully, and then hopefully two elevator riders. My only concern is about them allowing me to tape them. On the other hand, I think that I can be pretty convincing about that...
Tuesday, April 06, 2004
Wow. Great seder last night. Good food, lots of fun, nice people I didn't know. Overall, competitive, if not better, than any seder I've been to in the past. Downside is that we didn't finish, but oh well. Who ever expects to get through the whole thing..
In other news, I have to lead a discussion today, and I have no idea how I'm going to start. I think that I'm just going to start talking about the moral implications of my soundscape project, and I'm sure that it'll stir some controversy...
Finally. Dodgers lost yesterday, and they lost bad. The bright side is that Milton Bradley (yes, like the game company) is a good addition, and Shawn Green hit a home run. The downside is that the Padres (THE PADRES!) scored seven runs off of Hideo Nomo... It'll be interesting how this season turns out. I can't remember the last time that the Dodgers had hitters but no pitchers. I can totally envision the starting rotation in two months consisting of Perez, Alvarez, Lima, Jackson, and either Weaver, Nomo, or Ishii...
Monday, April 05, 2004
Oh yeah. I forgot some stuff and now it's piling up in my mind...
First, I got my AFS proposal in and done with, so hopefully, they will respond positively and all will be well. Plus, like I've said, it'll be a pretty easy paper to write--something I've written about before, so all will be well.
Second, last night I made Horosset for the Seder that I'm going to tonight. Looks okay, except that I couldn't get red apples, so there's a mixture of green and pinkish instead. Tastes really good, though, so I'm not too worried...
Third, I guess I should wish people a happy passover.
Not quite there... but close.
Well, I'm not quite on track with my paper writing, but I figure that I'm close. I've written about seven and a half pages of one of my two papers for Henry (the one on the elevator), and it ain't half bad. I've covered everything I want to cover about the physical makeup of the elevator and how people act inside it, and all I need to write about is what happens with the elevator the majority of the time: it stands still. I think that this'll be a pretty good paper. It may be that I'll have to expand it in certain places, but not too much. I know it's a little bit short, but unlike others in the class, I'm not writing about a cafe or a public hallway. I'm writing about an elevator. A small place, a short paper. Right?
Saturday, April 03, 2004
Attempt number two at making something approximating Indian Food: Not a total success, but it certainly didn't suck as much as last time. I gathered directions for a bunch of different dishes, added spices approximating one or another, added various kinds of vegetables, and viola! Something that definitely smelled right, and tasted more or less right, except that the consistency was wrong--not enough liquid for my amount of solid. Next time, I think, I will add more water, a tiny bit of tomato paste, and more yogurt for thickening... Oh yeah, and lemon is a definite must. Anyway, though, the point is that I'm getting better, and sooner or later, I'll have some grip on how to make the most complexly flavored food I can think of (except maybe thai, which is another mystery to be unraveled...).
Alright. I just sold out and added a link to my amazon wishlist to the sidebar...
It feels so dirty but it feels so right.
Friday, April 02, 2004
Food and writing and stuff...
I've been trying to figure out for a week why I can't sit down and write for any real length of time, and I still don't know, but this morning, I did sit down and write for a little bit at least. I edited my AFS proposal, then I started to write a second draft of my paper for Henry's class on the elevator. I managed to write about two pages, but they're two good pages--two pages that I can work with and that I think are worth turning in. I figure that in a little while, I'll write a bit more then go to school, turn in my advising stuff, and see two people lecture about careers in libraries and archives. I'm not sure that I'm so interested in the topic, but if I don't go, I won't get out of the house at all today, and that would be a tragedy. I've been thinking about my relationship with the cat, and days where I don't get out of the house are always the days where things go sour between he and I...
Anyway, in other news, I made myself an omelet filled with ricotta cheese for breakfast this morning, and it was really good. I don't know why more omelets aren't filled with ricotta, but from now on, I'm making a push for eggs in this style. When I was little, ricotta cheese was never something about which I was really enthusiastic, but now, tasting it again, I find that it's sweet and creamy and very nice, and not grainy like I used to think. I don't know. Sometimes tastes do change...
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