I offer an incomplete list of various signs of spring:
  • longer days
  • crocus quickly followed by daffodils
  • a hankering for asparagus
  • a few teasingly "warm" days
  • the inexplicable early emergence of flip-flops (or shorts, tiny skirts, etc.)
  • my pasty white legs "running" along the city streets


Smurf Family

Smurf Family
Originally uploaded by the bandits altercations

So, my sister's 30th birthday was last week. She had herself a nice little party held in a building that will be razed at some point here in the near future. I have to say, that might be the way to go. Find yourself an empty building that won't stand much longer and go crazy.

The sis had a big day to check of her life list and I had a much smaller accomplishment, but one of note, methinks. I put my foot through a wall. On purpose. Perhaps "through" is a bit too much, but that wall knew I was there. So, without further ado, a list of highlights:
- seeing the immediate and extended fam
- putting my foot through a wall
- watching my sister sing her own birthday karaoke song. FANTASTIC
- stepping out the back of the house to get a hot dog from the hot dog guy hired to cater the evening. sweet.
- seeing a hat on my mom's head. It never happens.
- the costumes!*... Ponch!, Don Johnson, prom queens, Tiffany, Molly Ringwald...
- the destruction the next morning. Hilarious.

There's more, but that's all you'll get for now.

* the bro did not dress up, thus he's not in the pic. boo.


flooding and such

road to nowhere

So, I headed up to Washington this weekend to help the fam with moving back into their house after the flooding of last December. It was a pretty awesome sight to behold, and not in the "Dude, that's totally RAD!" sort of way. Trees were where they shouldn't have been... roads, dirt, etc. etc. etc. I don't know what was more striking, the multitude of bridges swept away from their foundations or the large bits of road that picked up and moved by the force of the water. Its a bit of an understatement to say that chunks of road hanging out in a field presents an incongruous scene. Additionally, you can't not think about New Orleans after seeing it. I mean, this was a big flood and it had, and continues to have, a HUGE impact on the people living there. But in many ways they're so much better off than the people impacted by Katrina. And its not like the class breakdown is necessarily that different, in terms of strict monetary earnings. But the ability of loggers or dairy farmers (anyone with an arguably viable trade, if not their own land) to recover and stay in the same place is vastly better than an unskilled laborer or someone dependent upon the service sector. That's not to say that everyone is staying. I saw a ton of "For Sale" signs... I have my doubts about their success to sell to anyone other than big money people who won't continue to live in the house, run a dairy, etc. And who knows how many renters were shoved out with the landowner choosing to sell rather than restore or rebuild. Anyway, that was my weekend. It was much easier than that being my life for the past two months or two years.


some birds

Recently I've seen a few things that entertained me to no end. Two things in particular deal with birds. Random? Yes. But such is life.

First, I saw, rather practically walked through, a murder of crows the other day while out on a walkabout. They were all very active: looking about, cawing, swooping here and there, etc. As I moved closer I saw what they were really up to. These crows were hunting chestnuts. The successful ones flew up into the air with their prize, positioned themselves over the road, and than dropped said nut from about 20 to 25 feet in the air. After dropping the nut they immediately went into a controlled free-fall right after it, grabbed it up off the concrete, and moved off to some high branch to eat the prize inside. The road was their nut cracker. Crows are rad.

The second bird event involves a parrot. Last night I saw a man and a woman doin' their weekly grocery shopping with a parrot. The parrot was just hanging out on the dudes shoulder. Between you and me, I think it looked a little bored, but glad to be out of the house.


Vampire Weekend

An indulgence. So much fun.


testing security

chrysanthemum tea

My trip down to the Bay was a successful one. Not only did I participate in Big Doings, I was able to watch Lost with KFR and Beetlegirl and see A. on her last trip home from Taiwan before June.

Only one thing could have tripped me up. A. kindly gave me some chrysanthemum tea to bring home... in a baggie. Said baggie of tea hung out in my purse right next to my prescribed muscle relaxant and vicoden. Yeah. I've been pulled aside more than once at SFO; the TSA even made me step into the Super Sniffer (the machine that can detect a nucleon or quark from an evil substance that was on your clothes 5 days ago) on more than one occasion. You could have seen my face on the evening news with the headline: Evil-doing terrorist/evil-doer no match for the TSA. Then the TSA people would have loaded the audience with their own people to ask softball questions a la FEMA at the resulting press conference. Madness.

Good thing I was able to run the gauntlet.


sleep of reason

Yeah. Goya. That's some heavy shit. Seen this week in an exhibit with the pervy man he inspired: Picasso.

The Spanish Masters. Good stuff.