October 30, 2006

Pay the Piper

I feel like this is one of those 'pay the piper' weeks, i.e., I'm going to be very sorry that I didn't get some of my work done earlier. Getting a good night's rest might be a good way to combat the working day ahead, but since when have I followed convention? I feel too anxious to sleep.

Part of it could be that birthday thing today. I think it's pathetic to be 24 and already feel that I've hit my scary age. Twenty-four sounds old enough to give up my Peter Pan lifestyle. However, I don't know what makes twenty-four so different from 23. I would probably wax much less philosophical had this birthday fallen on a weekend instead of a Monday.

Some of the melancholy may be lingering from the Tech and UT game. Unfortunately, I had to tape the game, and I haven't yet watched it. Scott theorizes that every time his football team wins, Tech loses. Now I don't know who to root for! I'm so glad USC finally lost. That team has been overrated since last season.

Photo by Nick Moore.  Oct 28, 2006

I'm glad for Halloween. It's a great holiday. I'm still working on my costume. I will probably post some pictures if I get it done in time to actually wear it. For those staying home to pass out candy: What to Avoid Giving out for Halloween, and The Best and Worst Candy Fillings. I'd hate for you to be on the receiving end of a prank for handing out pennies or walnuts instead of chocolate. My personal opinion: no candy corn either!

Please comment and tell me what your favorite trick-or-treat candy is. My favorite would probably be Reese's Peanut Butter Cups. Happy Halloween!

October 26, 2006

Rachael Ray...Burgermeister

Currently listening:
Drag It Up: Old 97s
Drag It Up
by Old 97s

I feel the irrepressible urge to blog. This is despite having stared at the computer for something like 48 straight hours, minus ten or so sleeping hours, and composing a serious pointy-headed-intellectual-type paper for the majority of yesterday. Maybe I just feel the need to write something meaningless that will not be read by anyone.

I read this snippet of a story about Rachael Ray, the self-made empire of a human. She's into so many projects that just thinking about it makes me want to take a three day nap. I don't really have an opinion on her either way; although I do admire her brilliance in marketing herself. My personal favorite Food Network star is Alton Brown, of course.

Any guesses on what will happen next on Grey's Anatomy? I'm dying to know what the next Meredith/McDreamy plot twist will be. Bummer- looks like tonight's episode is a re-run. Same for The Office. Looks like I'll be catching up on my Curb Your Enthusiasm rental while I make the Italian Cream Cake. Thanks for the recipe link, auntie ominous!

Coffee Heath® Bar CrunchWell, it's definitely time for bed, and my mind is definitely fried, but I don't know if I'll be able to sleep since I ate half a carton of Ben & Jerry's Coffee Heath Bar Crunch in a fit of nervous homework avoidance.

Also, extra credit for you overachievers:
In defense of Rachael Ray

October 22, 2006

An American in Taipei

Current Netflix rental:
Curb Your Enthusiasm: Season 3, Disc 1

I haven't blogged in a couple of weeks, and my html coding feels kinda rusty tonight. I've been keeping busy lately. I should be working on a midterm paper, but instead I'm calculating my net worth. So far, one financial site I used misspelled principal as principle, and another had judgement. No wonder America is in such financial straits! It's kind of a bummer to see how slowly that home mortgage loan principle principal decreases, isn't it?

I thought I would blog a bit about Katie in Taiwan. She's been over there for - wow! - almost a month now. She got to call me from the airport before she left the States, and I thought her Mandarin sounded great. Although, I thought she picked up a bit of a Utah accent from her time there. I've gotten a couple of e-mails from her since she arrived in Taiwan. I'll try to relate some of her news, and hopefully nothing will be lost in the translation. Here's what she wrote in her first e-mail:
So, let me tell you a little bit about Taiwan. Every night the garbage man comes through the streets to collect the garbage. The interesting thing is that like the ice cream man in America, he plays music. Last night they played Für Elise. Hilarious. The traffic is an experience never to be forgotten. Everyone just does what they need to. There are so many scooters and bikes...but no sidewalks...so everyone cars/people/dogs/bikes are all on the street. It is really refreshing, because although there isn't any organization, there isn't any road rage either. Everyone just goes on their way. I did get a new bike...and then I spray painted it, to make it look old, so no one will steal it. It's been an adventure trying to ride a bike in a skirt. The hardest part isn't riding, but staying modest, as the wind tends to blow up a skirt. I am improving. As far as food goes, there are a lot more noodles and less rice than I thought there would be. It is interesting. I haven't tried stinky tofu yet. The best thing has been breakfast. They have steamed rolls and inside they have eggs and stuff. That was really good. They also have really good drinks here...smoothies and such.
Right now she's in Zhongli or Chungli, depending on how you want to butcher it. Katie's missionary companion is from Koahsiung, in southern Taiwan, and so her English skill is probably comparable to Katie's Mandarin. I think Katie is happy to see or hear anything English right now. She met a couple of Filipinos that spoke English and was excited about that. She said she was embarrassed to admit it, but she went to a McDonald's and loved it. The food she describes sounds really yummy. She said:
In Taiwan they had a holiday for [the harvest moon]. I'm not sure what it is called but everyone has BBQ's and eats moon cakes. They're really interesting about the size of a ping pong ball and they're pretty dense... They're filled with some kind of fruit filling. The BBQ's were really good...lots of seafood, vegetables. The ward here had one and invited the missionaries. When we got there the members immediately started offering us food. I didn't (or didn't know how to) ask what everything was, but afterwards I did find out that one skewer was chicken hearts. It was surprisingly good. Speaking of food, I'll give you an update on the week's adventures. Earlier this week we went to this place and I ordered fried rice with chicken. I bit down on the chicken and there was a bone in it. I had forgotten that in Taiwan they don't debone their chicken they just chop it up. From now on, I'm ordering ham or something. I also ate a green bean bingse. They put green bean soup mixture in a bowl and then put shaved ice on top. On top of the ice they put sweet milk. It was really interesting. I never thought green beans could be so good, but they are! So my first holiday in Taiwan was really really good.

Peanut butter from Taipei and wheat bread from Mom!Katie sent me some peanut butter as a birthday gift. For my birthday, I really just want the World Series to end. Maybe Katie can pray for that. Baseball commentary is really cutting into football coverage. Anyway, I couldn't wait and tasted the peanut butter already. It tastes pretty similar to American peanut butter, except the texture is a little thinner and oilier. I'm not completely sure, but from what I can guess from the nutrition info, there are a lot more calories and fat grams in the Chinese peanut butter than American Skippy.

I've wasted too much time blogging. Everyone in my office has an October birthday. I'm going to go make a Big Red Cake for a birthday party tomorrow at work. Last week I made a cheesecake, and it was quite good, if I say so myself. Thursday, I'm going to try my hand at an Italian Cream Cake.

In closing, please indulge me. Wendy sent me two snippets from this week's BYU Police Beat that made me laugh out loud:
Misplaced property
Oct. 13: Officers responded to the report of a suspicious briefcase in the Eyring Science Center. Upon investigation officers found someone had simply misplaced their briefcase.

Oct. 13: A student reported two male students throwing acorns off the bridge near the law building on East Campus Drive, hitting another student. When questioned, the male students said they were throwing acorns into the tops of trees to see the reactions of students who thought animals were making the noises in the trees. The students were asked to stop throwing acorns.

October 8, 2006

Bad Moon Rising

Current Netflix rental:
Curb Your Enthusiasm: Season 2, Disc 2

Another weekend of college football in the books, and it wasn't a great weekend for Tech fans. I will say it was an exciting game, and it was winnable, but we mostly looked pretty sloppy. I expected a good game. Too bad it didn't go our way. I expect the Raiders to finish the season 8-4. Thoughts?

Missouri's William Moore steps in front of intended receiver Texas Tech's Robert Johnson for an interception returned for a touchdown, the second consecutive interception returned for a touchdown by Missouri, in the first half of a Big 12 Conference football game at Jones AT&T Stadium, Saturday, October 7, 2006, in Lubbock, Texas. (AP Photo/Joe Don Buckner)

The Aflac trivia question during the Tech/Missouri game was this: What Big 12 team has had a winning record each of the ten years since the inception of the conference?

The Red River shootout ended up being more of a blow out the second half. Arkansas looked really good at Auburn. I'm ready to fast forward to November 18 for the Ohio State v. Michigan game. The only exciting games left in the Big 12 South are probably rivalry games like A&M @ Texas and Oklahoma @ Oklahoma State. Those might not even turn out to be close. And in games that nobody cares about: after 8 missed FGs, North Texas prevails in 7 OTs. We are a liberal arts school, and we don't have time for that football stuff at North Texas.

Eggs Benedict & AsparagusI should probably give up my football watching in favor of more worthy pursuits anyway. Like eating. My foodie lifestyle has taken a dive since rejoining the world of pointy-headed academia. Today for lunch we had eggs benedict and broiled asparagus.

It is unbelievable, but I haven't been grocery shopping in a couple of weeks! As Scott lamented, "You have no dairy products in your house!" I seem to have quit doing two of my favorite things: grocery shopping and cooking!

I still haven't watched last week's episodes of Grey's Anatomy or The Office. I recorded them with the poor-man's TiVo, the VCR, and I think I should watch them now and catch up with the Meredith-McDreamy-McVet plot before someone inadvertently updates me.

Is anyone else loving this gorgeous Harvest Moon?

October 1, 2006


Robert Johnson's last-second touchdown catch floored the Aggies. David J. Phillip/AP PhotoThere seems to have been some debate this week about rivalry: Aggies saying Tech isn't their rival and what not. I don't blame them. I don't think the Tech/A&M game is the biggest game of the season myself. I didn't even realize it was this weekend and made some other plans for Saturday afternoon. As a result, I had to tape the second half, and I'm still trying to watch it. Tech has won 9 of the last 12 games in the series, so if I were an Aggie, I'd want to say that the game isn't a rivalry game, too.

I'll wear red and black every day of the week leading up to the Texas game, but the Aggies only scored a red sweater on Friday. I certainly see UT as a more respectable opponent. I keep finding this idea in print that as far as Texas football goes, it's 1) Texas, 2) Texas A&M, and 3) Texas Tech. These people need to join the 21st century. Am I wrong?

Tech's Robert Johnson scores a touchdown against A&M's Marquis Carpenter in the first half Saturday.Saturday's game was another close one in the series, but this one may hurt Aggies most of all, says A&M sports writer Richard Croome. The game was such a close one, and since we won, I couldn't let it pass without comment. Thank goodness for Robert Johnson, Shannon Woods, and Joe Garcia on the Raiders' side. And we never know what that mad scientist Mike Leach is going to say. This week's post-game commentary included ranting about Spy vs Spy or something. Also one pirate metaphor, "Once in awhile, a pirate can beat a soldier, you know." I like his eccentricity and unprententiousness, but sometimes I wonder if someone less loopy is really running the team. Please see also: Swashbuckling Leach, Red Raiders pillage Aggies.

I know.  I'm being another tacky Tech fan.

Next week's opponent: undefeated Missouri.