January 28, 2011
If you know me, you probably know how smooth I am.
Recently I went to check out a new apartment on the lower level of a middle-aged couple’s house. It had been raining, and the grassy “sidewalks” were a bit saturated. I didn’t think much of it and parked my truck next to a big hedge on the grass. After viewing the apartment, and trying to make a good impression on the owners of the house, I returned to my truck to take off and go sacrifice tourists to the gods of all things real estate. But my truck wouldn’t budge. I was stuck. Stuck in the mud
No problem, I thought, AAA to the rescue! But there was a problem with my genius plan. I HAD LEFT MY PHONE AT HOME. If you know me, you probably know how attached I am to my phone. I am a phone ninja. So this kind of ninja-negligence is pretty rare.
I spent about 10 minutes staring at my steering wheel trying to figure out what to do. Apparently, this does not make cars move.
Eventually I had to break down and go back to the house and ask for help. The guy was very nice. He lent me his phone and I called AAA.
DU NUH NUH NUH NUH BATMAN! I mean triple AAA.
A very scrufy AAA man shows up to dislodge my car. Now, if you remember from the beginning of my story, and I’m sure you do, I parked next to a hedge. In my masterful attempts to drive away from the mud trap, I had gotten further wedged into the hedge. So he warned me, there may be scratches. It went a little something like this. And it made. my. day.
Scruffy AAA man: Now, you do know that there may be scratches on your truck
Scruffy AAA man: And you do know that when I pull your truck away, it may get more scratches. Is this okay with you?
Me: Well, I mean, if there’s nothing you can do about it there’s nothing you can do about it. And anyways, I mean, I think I’ll be okay. It’s a truck.
Scruffy AAA man: (long pause) You’re my kinda woman
In case you want to pick up a AAA guy
August 16, 2010
Re: “Violation” of Religious Freedom Concerning the Inclusion of Gay People in the Institution of Marriage
Before Judge Vaughn Walker’s abominable decision, you, according to your 1st amendment rights and staunch religious convictions were free to think that gay marriage is wrong and homosexuality immoral. Now, after this landmark example of judicial activism and downright disregard for common sense, you…can…STILL THINK THAT!
You can do what you could do before
Gay people can do what they couldn’t do before
Look. Here’s the deal. Freedom of religion is about personal expression, period. You have every right to personally express that homosexuality and the inclusion of gay people in marriage is wrong. What you can’t do, and have never had the right to do, is actively use those beliefs to harm others. This includes hate speech, harassment, or discrimination. And now that this inconvenient fact can be enforced because equality has been legally codified does not infringe on your personal exercise of religion, conscience, or freedom. Because it’s not about you.
Don’t you take away my right to systematically oppress you
August 11, 2010
This is the greatest invention…ever. Fuck you, wheel
July 11, 2010
For those of you who don’t know, I got in a car accident with a city bus at highway speeds about 6 months ago. Apparently, my brakes were under the impression that they didn’t have to show up to work that particular Wednesday (lack of vacation time notwithstanding). After skidding across two lanes on I-95 south, I turned my head just in time to see a city bus slam into my passenger side and crush my car like a frat boy with a can of natty light. This is not a good image to have in your head when trying to cross a street full of busses. If my car had been turned the other way, you’d all probably be sending my parents flowers right now. But I made it across (bus PTSD notwithstanding)
So I’m here in Hawai’i. When I’m not crossing roads of death, I’m trying to set up an Independent Study in furniture design at UH. Or should I say “Directed Study.” Apparently independence is not a cherished value out here (1776 declarations notwithstanding.) I have to come up with a detailed syllabus and write a 2 page typed proposal that must get approved by all the head honchos of the art department. The instructions for the requirements for the study take up an entire typed, single spaced page. I got to the part about “students doing better with structure” and actually laughed out loud. Structure? Get out of town. If there’s one thing a Brown education does not prepare you for, it’s requirements, deadlines, and structure. That and the reality that not everything is possible with persistence and a Dean’s Note (ceramics studios notwithstanding) (tool-faces in the Art Department withstanding). I mean, I’m still getting used to the fact that I can’t carry a pocket-sized Dean Hansen around with me everywhere to solve all of my problems (the problem that I don’t have a real Brown degree yet notwithstanding).
But people who don’t go to Brown don’t understand this, and people who go to Brown don’t understand that other people don’t understand this. So when my teacher Dave said that I should do an Independent Study, I filled in the mental gaps with what I thought the preparation for an independent study to be, namely,” la dee da dee da hey Professor Gonsher, sign this” (mental picture here should be frolicking teletubbies). So now I’m working to come up with something more concrete than “I’m gonna, like, make furniture” to show to the UH higher-ups.
I was explaining all of this to my dad, but he had more important things to talk about. Specifically, that he’s learning to speak cat. We had about a 10 minute conversation about his new language skills (official recognition of “cat” as a language notwithstanding). It went a little something like this:
Dad: Guess what. I’m learning to speak cat
Dad: Yeah, I’m getting really good at it
Dad: Yeah. See, I go up to a cat and I go “merooow” and they go “merooow” and then I go “merooow”
Dad: Yeah and then I scratch their heads and we keep talking
Rachel: How does shmolister vernicitude feel about this (family dog’s actual name notwithstanding)?
Dad: (a remarkably sullen turn in tone of voice) He’s with your sister for the week. I’m suffering. I’m just really…suffering. But at least I can speak cat
Now I’m not making fun of my dad. Not in the least. I think he’s great. I’m simply illustrating a point, one that I’ve conveyed many times. IT’S NOT MY FAULT. This kind of abject dorkiness is simply genetic and I apparently inherited every pocket-protector gene known to man. Alternatively, my dad’s genes for insane organizational skills seem to skip a generation. It’s too bad. Because when you combine my dorkiness with my complete scatter-brainedness, I’m like the Captain Planet of spaz (with our powers combined…) But at least there is a way for people to cope with it: shut up and find it endearing (fact that it’s not endearing notwithstanding).
…For the viewing of those who have at least at one point in time found my ramblings humorous. I know, I know, you’re not laughing at me…you’re laughing near me (everyone I know notwithstanding)
May 9, 2010
So somehow I randomly started watching the Alabama Republican Gubernatorial debate. They all agree with each other. The only way to differentiate them is to see who answers a question more articulately.
But let me be more specific. There are a few concepts and terms with which every candidate agrees. Allow me to address one:
The legitimate use of the term “unborn baby” in the english language
I’m gonna be blunt. An “unborn baby” is not a baby
How can you be a baby if you are not yet born?
If you have to put a modifier in front of a word in order to properly describe something, you are no longer describing the same thing. You are describing something different. See, one baby has been born into this world, one baby has not. There’s something different about an “unborn baby.” And if it is so important to recognize that distinction, there’s something awry with calling it or treating it as the same thing.
There’s a word for an unborn baby. It’s called a fetus. So let’s stop equating abortion with the death of an actual baby without an umbilical cord that lives, eats, and breathes in the actual world. And doesn’t need a vernacular modifier.
This same concept even applies for gay marriage. Until the country / world sees gay marriage as simply marriage, it will always be different and lesser.
Baby, will you gay marry me?
April 19, 2010
A day in the life…
People whine about bureaucracy in congress. Get that president in line. Tell your senators what to do Goddamnit. They protest. Form tea parties rallies. Write letters. These patriots are gonna fight the man and the depths of hell will not stop them
These people are amateurs. This afternoon I walked into an institution where bureaucracy knows no bounds: Rite Aid. When I go to the pharmacy it’s like going to a gun fight. I have my paper prescriptions in one holster, the refillable bottles in the other. I know this is going to be a war.
Pharmacists have to follow regulations to the letter, and there are more regulations than pills in a bottle. So my simple quest to pick up an ol’ prescription becomes like slaying a minotaur deep inside the labyrinth: my prize, some little blue morsels in a bottle: my quest: a maze of insurance denials, miswritten or misread prescriptions, expiration dates 1 day past, and ornery, jaded pharmacists who just wished they could have been doctors.
With reservation, I place my prescription on the counter. You can’t be too careful with these people; there are rumors of pharmacy techs morphing into labyrinthine chimera on cue. My rule: never get too close. So at arms’ length, my scrip falls gingerly to the counter to be scooped up and examined brutally by the mythical beast in a lab coat.
“Oh no,” the pharmacist says, as she taps out letters on a computer keyboard. “Your insurance won’t be covering this.” High gear mode sets in. What is this pharmacist talking about? I thought insurance and I were pals. Last month the insurance company and I frolicked together with ponies and kittens, with rainbows showering down pharmaceuticals as they joyfully covered my prescription. But now it looks like things have changed. Maybe they don’t think this love affair will work after all. But insurance company! We were so good together!
I go to the ultimate source to trample the insurance company bureaucracy: my mother. Dialing her digits on my phone, holding back hyperventilating breaths, I told my knight in shining apron the situation: the insurance company had some kind of procedural problem now that I had a new ID number on my insurance card. “I’ll take care of this,” she said. I provided her with names and phone numbers, and told her to call me back. Thank god for mom, I thought, because all I could say was “screw perscriptions. I need a beer.”
Oh sure, she looks friendly NOW