Tuesday, September 30, 2008

trinity college/rome campus, fall 1988

me, in capri, 1988

this is something i have been wanting to do for a long time, and i think it is finally finished. this year is the 20-year anniversary of my study abroad program through trinity college in connecticut. it was a phenomenal experience and i am so thankful i was a part of it. i still to this day, even though we have very limited contact, feel close to all of my friends from this time.

anyway, in a total fit of nostalgia (and after realizing that my negatives were degrading rather rapidly), i digitized everything and created an online exhibition of such. i'm guessing the images hold little value to anyone but me and possibly the 40 other people who were there with me in 1988, but if you are interested you are totally welcome to visit rome, 1988.

Monday, September 29, 2008

more mosaic of me images

rich and gus did their mosaic of me images this weekend (answers below):

rich (1. rich; 2. pasta; 3. kirkwood high school; 4. blue; 5. jewel (?-i would not have guessed that...); 6. frozen margarita; 7. biking in italy; 8. chocolate chip pie; 9. found; 10. my children; 11. lost; 12. the fixer.)

gus (1. gus; 2. pizza; 3. withheld for privacy reasons; 4. green; 5. harrison ford (no, not in that way); 6. chocolate milk; 7. new zealand; 8. coldstone ice cream; 9. video game tester; 10. mom (awwwww); 11. awesome!; 12. lucky number 8.)

gus and i did one of paco for good measure (1. paco; 2. chicken skin; 3. chicken skin; 4. chicken skin...)

send me yours!

Friday, September 26, 2008

mosaic of me game

stolen from orangebeautiful.com blog:

So, here's the deal... you answer the following 12 questions about yourself (my answers are in parentheses after each question):

1. What is your first name? (missy)

2. What is your favorite food? (breakfast quesadillas from cafe pasqual's in santa fe)

3. What high school did you attend? (robert e. lee high school)

4. What is your favorite color? (fire-engine red)

5. Who is your celebrity crush? (tom waits, just so i could hear him talk)

6. Favorite drink? (mojito)

7. Dream vacation? (anywhere in italy)

8. Favorite dessert? (carrot cake)

9. What do you want to be when you grow up? (a photographer of merit)

10. What do you love most in life? (my kids)

11. One word to describe you? (addled?)

12. Your Flickr name? (minimalismist)

Wanna play?: Type your answer to each of the above questions into Flickr's search. Using only the images that appear on the first page, choose your favorite and copy and paste each of the URL’s into the Mosaic Maker (3 columns, 4 rows)... Enjoy!

and this is my resulting image:

play along! send me yours if they won't post in comments!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

oh. my. goodness. what. is. that. smell.


if this isn't the smell of death, i don't know what is. we had a wee rodent problem a couple of weeks ago (squirrels--and they're not the cute fluffy ones we had in texas, either--these are feral desert squirrels that will totally cut you if given the chance) and we put some bait out for them, which has obviously worked. however, instead of expiring outside like a good guest, they decided to die somewhere in the 5-inch space between our roof and our ceiling. and i absolutely cannot find them. i thought they were in the air duct system, but from what i can see they aren't there. then i thought i might get lucky and they'd be on the roof, but no. they are totally somewhere in my house. the walls are adobe so i know they aren't in there--the herringbone wood ceiling is the only place they could be.

of course the main locus of the smell is right over my bed, which would also be right next to the place where i keep all my clothes. i'm not sure any of us can survive this smell--we may truly have to rent a hotel room. i have burned enough incense to make a hippie's eyeballs burn and have lit scented candles, but nothing is working. if anyone has any suggestions about what to do, please, please, please add it in the comments!

the exterminator came yesterday and things are just a giant freakin' mess up there. apparently, squirrels have been living in that space for DECADES and have destroyed parts of the ceiling and the roof (rich and i had convinced ourselves that it was old water damage; it wasn't). there was one specific 4 inch vent that they are coming in and out of; there were 17 locations in all that they were coming through. and the poor exterminator literally almost got sick when he opened the vent--and that's impressive, because--and i don't think i'm impugning exterminators at all by saying this--it is hard to gross-out an exterminator. he even took pictures of it with his phone.

so, to recap: the smell is beyond unbearable; all kinds of poison has been put up there; all the vents and entryways have now been sealed; and we just stay gone as much as humanly possible. yuuuuuuuccccck.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

"you're making me NOT want to support the lion's club!"

oy vey. where to begin. i started a discussion on duke city fix, an albuquerque blog, about a new drive-thru coffee shop that is to take the place of what would have been a brand-spankin' new, lion's club sponsored eye clinic here in town. and let's just say it hasn't been well-received...in fact i'm pretty much regretting bringing it up in the first place.

people are actually telling me they won't support the lion's club because i was bitching about the coffee place! what? deluded. they should be thankful to be of good health and not need such services, i guess, because lord knows their logic isn't working right. anyway, if you are interested, you can take a gander at the very opinionated and ire-filled rants about this here.

i clearly underestimated both the open-mindedness of the duke city fix community and the passion they have for their satellite coffee...hope not to make that mistake again. many, many points of view on the duke city fix (but none of them agree with me, damnit!).

(stolen from despair.com)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

but it's only mid-september!

poor gus. he came home on friday just completely irate, telling me he hated miss allison (who?), and was just generally pissed off. he said that in chorus he made a silly face at a friend standing on the opposite side of the risers from him, they both laughed, and miss allison--the choir teacher's assistant--grabbed both of them and made them sit for 45 minutes facing a white wall. 45 minutes! i was pretty pissed myself after hearing that, so after much discussion over the weekend rich and i went in on monday to talk to the choir teacher about it. it was very obvious that not only was this a common practice in her class but she saw nothing at all wrong with it...and basically rich and i figured out that we were not all on the same page so far as discipline was concerned. long story short, she wasn't sorry and we're giving it one more try before we take him out and i teach him art history (at home) in place of chorus.

and all i keep thinking is that it is only mid-september and i am already at school talking to a teacher...any thoughts on this?

p.s. lindsay and jake still do not have power! aren't you glad you aren't in houston right now?

Saturday, September 20, 2008

rally forth, galveston!

mary kay setting up tables for the first responder's lunch (AP photo)

there was a very nice article written by the AP on the galveston clean up/reconstruction effort; they also talk about the free lunch on thursday at gaido's.

mmm, shrimp lunch...(AP photo)

this is the before and after of crystal beach on bolivar peninsula (i think it is more accurate to call it bolivar island now)

volunteers trying to get the cows off the island

my sister and her husband still don't have power and were told yesterday that it would be at least a week until they do, so for now they are in my mom's townhouse (which, as i mentioned, is near george and barbara bush's house and thus had power in fairly short order following the storm). my other sister is trying to hit up the state for some extremely expensive hotel stays (she doesn't have power, either).

have you made your red cross donation yet? any little bit helps!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

more post-ike gaido's news

paulie kicks much ass: free shrimp boil for EVERYONE on the island on thursday. read about it here. beautiful.

and more good news: this photo was shot yesterday i believe and it shows seawall blvd. right at gaido's--if you look to the southwest one block of that large semicircle, you can see the restaurants and the motel. the roof is pretty damaged towards the back, but everything else looks intact. i'm betting they put the crab and the shrimp into storage, as they did for rita.

and this was just posted, like an hour ago, at the galveston daily news website:

The island’s famous Gaido’s Seafood Restaurant, 3800 Seawall Blvd., sustained only minor damage. Crews already were cleaning up. Gaido’s Seaside Inn had heavier storm damage. Gaido’s restaurant has been on the island nearly a century, and the family that owns it was determined to get back to business.

Gaido’s is having a shrimp boil for first responders at noon Thursday at the restaurant.

“We have started cleaning up,” Michael Gaido said. “Galveston will overcome the devastation. Galveston is resilient and will rebuild.”

something that doesn't kick so much ass: the tiger, freed by ike, is still roaming free on crystal beach. there is also mention of some cattle loose as well, but i am guessing they won't last too long...

(if you are interested, there was a good article in the texas observer recently about people who own large cats in texas, and yes it is legal to do so there. one of my favorite trips with gus was a road trip through northwestern arkansas to stay at turpentine creek wildlife refuge, a home for rescued tigers, ligers and lions. i highly recommend them.)

Monday, September 15, 2008

recovering from ike

the casey's (gaido's) shrimp

as i sit here high and dry (literally) in the desert, the rest of my family is cleaning up after ike. my sister and her husband rode out the storm at their house in southwest houston in grand style, drinking heavily and watching their fence fall down. you can't really sleep through a hurricane--it's just way too noisy--particularly if you own the house that is blowing down around you. they lost some branches but no trees and their roof seems to be in place. they still don't have power. my mom's brick fortress held up beautifully--they lost some branches and power, but it was back on in less than 24 hours. i am convinced they fixed her part of the city first because george and barbara bush live like a block away...

i haven't talked to any of my galveston relatives yet and i so hope they left the island. i know gaido's lost their roof off the motel; no word on if the crab and/or the shrimp survived. the austin american-statesman published an honest review of staying along the gulf coast on the cheap just two weeks ago, which of course highlights gaido's motel...although this may not be the best time to visit. there are several forums online (click here, or here, or here for more info) with people asking about gaido's--i think that is wonderful and terrifically kind. it is an island institution. i wish i had some news myself.

if you'd like to help, please send a donation to the american red cross.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

still on that wheelz theme...

...lindsay's comment reminded me i wanted to write about the bumper stickers littering the cars at gus and sophie's school...of course all of these posts should be read while listening to "sex on wheelz" by my life with the thrill kill cult ('tis on itunes).

the oldies but (usually) goodies:
"somewhere in texas a village is missing its idiot" (with a pic of g bush)--i always wanted to put that on my car, but i thought people would mistake the idiot being referenced for me.

"keep the rio grande"

"renewable energy is homeland security" (on all the prius, element, hybrid-esees)

"woof" and "dog is my co-pilot"

every variety of pro-mccain

every variety of pro-obama

many, many of those family outline stickers--and they're all on the giant, american-made SUVs. why?

rather new and rather funny:
"the rapture is not an exit strategy"

"militant agnostic: i don't know and you don't either"

"live every day as if your ass was on fire"

and then there's my bumper sticker, that rich stuck a "mary kay empowers women" sticker over:
(the irony being that i don't wear make-up)

i think lindsay and jake are sporting a legolas air freshener with a "kinky for prez 2012" license plate holder. and possibly some grateful dead teddy bears stuck on the back of the volvo. damn stinky hippies. what do you have?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

boobie shirt eulogy

i got this in the email from my sister, lindsay, who aside from having wicked bad mice has a lovely bod on which to display her now unusable boobie shirt:

"Here lies my favorite shirt...
Named "boobies" spelled with a calculator.
The famed shirt took a nasty dive into a mouse sticky trap and is unrecoverable. All efforts were taken to revive this beloved shirt, but the sticky trap was too overwhelming.
Pray for us.


let us all partake in her sorrow.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

what kinda wheelz you got?

now that i have a prius, i am allowing myself to be full-on judgmental regarding what everyone else drives. there, i've said it, and now you don't have to. actually, i was judgmental about this before but felt hypocritical since i was driving a 4runner.

anyway, driving gus to school is an event in and of itself, but it seems like many of the parents have gotten totally polarized regarding their transportation over this past summer. they/we all largely fall into one of two categories: prius/hybrid/econobox drivers and giant, oversized, i'm-invading-poland-after-dropoff drivers. there's a third class of mega-expensive european sedan drivers, but they're oddly less offensive somehow. there are also no corvettes, not many pickup trucks, and lots of minivans that defy categorization.

so, the first category (of which i am a proud member) includes:
the prius, obviously, and...

...the honda element and...

...the mini cooper, and...

...the toyota highlander hybrid

and there are a good deal of older hondas and toyotas being driven to death by their original owners who fall into this category as well. we're making a statement about something ("we're earthy! we're thrifty/cheap! we're concerned about the environment! we want to have a leg to stand on when we're judgmental!"), but what it is is a little less clear than the drivers of:

this mercedes g500 (i'm pretty sure it's bulletproof)

or the obligate hummer h1 driver--and there are several hummers in the parking lot

(although this is my favorite hummer image--no one died in this accident)

and, the coup de grace, this monstrosity of a mercedes--ironically titled a "sprinter"--picks up and drops off two tiny children every day. two children. just two. not like a whole soccer team, merely two little children. every day.

there are an abundance of toyota/lexus/ford/gm/cadillac giant SUVs that also fall into this category--i guarantee you've never seen such a variety outside a dealership before. behemoths, one and all. my 4runner barely fit into this category when compared to them (but, alas, did).

so there you have it. my judgment of the day. what are you driving?

Thursday, September 4, 2008

stuff you can blow up in your microwave!

we did our own version of "burning man"

i bought my first microwave, like ever, about a year ago; shortly thereafter, we found out it was possessed. it would turn on by itself, it wouldn't actually cook when you told it to, and it just refused to count down the time when it was supposed to. of course, since i am cheap and had paid for it and all that, i tried to make it work and kept trying to use it, but prudence eventually got the better of me and i scrapped it. but before we sent it to toxify some landfill in southern new mexico, we blew a bunch of crap up in it. and i think you could probably do all of this safely in a microwave that wasn't even headed for its final resting place as well (except the egg). in any event, we all got in touch with our inner 10-year-old pyro and destroyed some stuff.

enjoy, if you can--i am trying to load the videos full-size but blogger won't let me, damnit! i hope they aren't too blurry.

okay, i fully admit that i had NO idea what was going to happen when i started putting all this stuff in the microwave, so i am overreacting just a tad...note the cool celeste green nails, though! these are halved grapes--they make an electrical arc between the pieces that is beautiful

this is hilarious--it is the first floodlight that i put in the microwave, and it scared the hell out of me

ring of fire, baby! (it is a big circle of aluminum foil)

this is very cool, but goes very quick--it is a DVD in the microwave (i think it is one of the baby einstein series; i did those and wes anderson's "the darjeeling limited," which was quite possibly the worst movie i have ever seen...but it made a great microwave experiment)

the final act--an egg in the microwave (which you should totally not try at home--see this if you don't believe me!)

this was the final result, just shy of the moment we dumped it in the trash (and that tennis ball never did blow up)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

back-to-school night for gus

tonight was back-to-school night at gus' school--i really think this is going to be a good year. we were, however, forced to listen to the headmaster cry poverty for 30 minutes in a blatant attempt to extort money out of us by wearing us down. i think the vast majority of people would have thrown many a dead president at him then and there just to make him be quiet (which, of course, is what he is counting on). anyway, gus' classroom is adorable, his teacher is enthusiastic, and gus has only had a handful of talking-too-much issues so far. he has lots of books to get through this year and there is a class turtle named sammy. too cute.

and one of the things we (me, sophie and gus) are going to try and do this year is ride to school! i got a bitchin' new girly bike, which i love, and a kiddie seat for sophie on the back. it is a bianchi milano parco; it has been the bike of my dreams for years but various pregnancies and moves to iowa prevented my obtaining one. the celeste green is one of the greatest colors in nature. it is also the color of our guest room. you are forewarned.
(mine is the step-through kind, so i can, and do, bike in a skirt)