gah!! so overwhelmed!! Also some pictures.

June 10, 2009 at 7:12 pm (animal behavior, art?, cats, life in general, teach this!)

Oh my moly. Things are a-happenin’!

-I finally left the lab- woohoo!! No more rats and disgruntled grad students for me!! Unfortunately this also means no more income…
-I started my teaching certificate program- it is simultaneously incredibly frustrating and exciting. It’s frustrating because so much emphasis is put on this rule system that the program is based on, rather than the ins and outs of how to teach, which is what I really need to know. Additionally, apparently some of the people in the program are catty bi-oches*, because it’s only the second day of the program and I’ve already basically been told someone is talking crap about me. Awesome. Can’t get enough. Bring it, fools, you’re just jealous of my mad science background.
-I start teaching for real next Wednesday. Sure, it’s “student teaching,” but I’m actually teaching the lesson, making lesson plans, directing labs, grading, etc, so the only difference I see is that I’ll be under supervision the whole time. Plus I’m so excited about teaching that I keep volunteering for things when I should be just sitting back and watching. But this is good, right? ‘Cause no one will ever forget who I am this way…of course, they’ll all think I’m a nutcase, but at least they’ll never forget me…

In other news, we have a new addition to our household:
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Chomsky! The incredibly intense bearded dragon! My friend is moving out of the country and wanted Chomksy to go to a good home rather than being sold back to the pet store, so he became ours. I was worried the cats would freak him out, but since the second day he’s been here, he’s basically just ignored him. They cats, on the other hand, can’t get enough of him, especially during “daylight” hours when the heat lamp is on and he’s up and moving around.

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That’s big ol’ Kiwi, showing some love by sleeping on top of poor Chomsky’s terrarium, even though I’ve chased him off of there 248952720 times already. Little bastard. Cute, but still a bastard.

I had more pictures to post, of shops shaped like cupcakes and giant teddy bear statues that must induce nightmares (both of these things I saw in town recently…) but I am tired and I still have to write a syllabus and lesson plans and read some case studies and this and that and…

*i don’t know how you actually spell this word but I think my point still gets across so I’m comfortable in my ignorance in this area.

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follow up!

February 20, 2009 at 12:39 am (cats, insomnia, jinxing myself, monsters)

So, I wanted to follow up on my “where did the phrase ‘bat shit crazy’ come from” from the last post- this enigma was solved by Dr. FianceHusband!! He did a minor stint of bat field work, and one of the guys working with him told him that guano, since it is super good fertilizer, actually attracts a specific fungus that releases neurotoxins into the air that make you act all sorts of crazy. Hence, “bat shit crazy!” Everything is right with the world…ok maybe not but I do feel slightly more complete having not only solved that mystery but blogging about it as well. Ah, I love etymology…entomology is lovely too, but something completely different.

Also I’d like to point out, also in reference to my last post, that just because I push for treating blondes as real people does not mean that I don’t also respect people with other hair colors (or breast sizes). Seriously, I’m sorta not good at telling hair color anyway. I could’ve sworn that for most of my childhood my mom had red hair, when in actuality she only had red hair for a little while, while I was super young, then let it go brunette again. Still, every time I’d describe my mom she was always a red head in my brain. Imprinting is an amazing psychological thing, people!

In other news*, I think the spawn of the jabberwocky tree I saw last weekend have moved into the “attic” space above my apartment. We’re on the top floor, so I can’t hope that the crazy scrabbling noises that I hear coming from just a few feet above my head are being generated by a neighbor’s cat. Moon, who heard the monsters move in a couple weeks ago and kept trying to tell me by staring fixedly at a spot on the ceiling for hours, has totally been shooting me withering¬† “I told you so” glances all day. Or she’s just being her normal cat self. I seem to barely recall hearing the same noises for a while last year, but I take a lot of meds so memories are fuzzy things for me and tend to be highly influenced by whatever cartoon I just watched. And I certainly hope it’s jabberwocky spawn because if it is rats I’ll die of allergies (thank you very much, work!), and if it’s possum I will die of puking at the grossness. Raccoons I can handle. Monster spawn? I’d have to look into how to deal with them on an individual species basis. Personally I’m going to hope** it’s a family of obamacorns.

Technically I should be sleeping, since it’s a Thursday and all, but screw technicalities because I’m off tomorrow! I took the day off because tomorrow is my mom’s birthday (she would’ve been 52), and it’s a good thing ’cause I’ll need to spend it preparing for a TEACHING INTERVIEW!! After attending a career fair a couple weeks ago at my university (where I was the oldest “potential employee” and people kept asking me when I’d be graduating- jerks) I learned about this accelerated teaching certificate program, where you spend the summer cramming like mad about how to teach and deal with kids (I think there is a section on how to use flamethrowers), then you start teaching in the fall! Holy crap! On a whim I applied to it, which involved writing annoying essays which reminded me of high school which made me rethink wanting to be a teacher, even on a whim. Anyway the application went in and now I have to go teach other applicants something “age appropriate” which I have no idea what is. When I was in high school, age appropriate biology lessons involved making up answers for my biology worksheet because everyone knew that Coach Smith, who “taught” the class, had a volleyball game the night before and a rehearsal for his Christian folk band***, so there was no way he would actually be grading our work seriously. This was seriously my only biology class in high school, and yet I became a biologist. I always figured that being a scientist was way glamorous, but I am totally wrong. And you know what? Teaching pays WAY more than being a science tech. Also? No more begging for money worrying about funding cycles and grant renewals. And in all honesty, I actually really like teaching biology. Also I would totally be the hot but bat shit crazy teacher that everyone remembers forever, when they are off being doctors and real scientists and living in places that are not infested with monsters. Which by the way the cats are totally not interested in any more, which makes me think that the cats and the monsters have made a deal of some sort involving the monsters coming in and eating me in my sleep, as long as they are quiet and don’t wake up the cats****. Good thing I don’t have to work tomorrow! ‘Cause I’ll be staying up all night now, awaiting my monster-induced demise!

*HA! See, Kurt, “other news” stories are important!

**Haha, I was funny with out meaning to be!

***On days when we were supposed to be learning real science that made Coach Smith uncomfortable, like reproduction or evolution, he’d play us tapes of his Christian folk band rehearsals instead. How the hell did I become a biologist?!? The only piece of information that I remember “learning” from that guy was completely wrong- right before he turned on one of his rehearsal tapes, he told us “all you need to know about reproduction is that Y is dominant” with a stupid I’m-a-coach-not-a-real-teacher look on his face. This is wrong on so very many levels, people. Ethically, socially, but most importantly biologically. If you think that the Y chromosome is dominant I’ll let you blame it on a bad biology teacher but know now that this is a classic case in biology of there being no absolutes. Other than there being absolutely no people alive with only a Y and no X chromosome. Suck it, Coach Smith!

**** I told Dr. FianceHusband this theory and he reassuringly said “don’t worry, Moon wouldn’t let them eat me. She loves me.” True. However, I’m totally screwed. Kiwi loves me but is crazy dumb so he’d probably either pee on my laundry again or bring the monsters his toy, thinking we were playing a fun game and it was totally his turn to play. Or he’d just jump on my face.

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my head is a-spinnin'

February 3, 2009 at 4:18 am (cats, cold, GIST, just pure awesome, lessons in troll avoidance, life in general, simply flabbergasted, so confused)

Oi. Someone I know who will henceforth forever be known as “AlphaTroll” is trying to make my life miserable. Of course, I don’t know why I’m surprised, she’s been doing it the entire two years I’ve worked with her. Rather than fixate on this and worry if someone will randomly take it so far out of context that my brain will explode trying to figure out where the hell they are coming from, I will instead be inspired by this site. My goal now is to write five things that inspire me or bring me happiness every time I feel like punching the AlphaTroll.

1) Cat paws. The harrier the better.
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2) Well weathered art.
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3). Frosty plants at the bus stop.
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4). Silly cat expressions
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5) My lanterns
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This is a very good exercise in peaceful thinking! I totally feel better now and highly recommend it.

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how to start your monday properly

January 12, 2009 at 10:30 am (blog-a-day!, cats, life in general, work shmork)

Step 1. Drink your coffee out of this mug:img_0323
Step 2: Drink lots of coffee from that mug.
Step 3: Put on your sexy boots, the amazing ones that don’t hurt your feet, even if they don’t really match your outfit.
Step 4: Spend a little extra time with the cats, especially if they are trying to sleep:

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Step 5: Repeat as needed.

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back to work

January 5, 2009 at 9:44 pm (blog-a-day!, cats, continuing depression, life in general, work shmork)

I had to go back to work today after two weeks off…sadly they were not a restful two weeks, since half the time was spent running around after family and the other half was spent being incredibly ill, but whatever. So, most of the time I actually really like work- we do cool research and most of the time I just get my assignments and do lots of work on my own, with out the boss breathing down my neck. I especially like work during intercession (the two weeks between the semesters)- no students mean I get lots of work done! Plus it turns out my boss is super famous now, so that’s cool. I just wish being a tech involved making more money. Apparently the prestige of working on a big campus is supposed to make up for the lack of salary that private sector techs get. See, prestige doesn’t pay the student loans, people. Hence my almost complete abandonment of all my hopes and dreams to become a fancy successful marine biologist. Bah!

Anyway, today was an ok work day, which means I’m suspicious of the rest of the week. And the rest of the semester. And basically the rest of my life. Bleh. Stupid gloomy day has given me a stupid bad mood. No more talk. Just cat pictures.

Kiwi and his paper bag:

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Moon and her box:
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Time for bed. Then more work. Repeat. Forever.

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Laura R, this is all your fault.

December 9, 2008 at 9:34 pm (cats, crafts, just pure awesome)

But what a cute fault it is…

img_5224We (by which I mean “I”) were going for the sexy-or-at-least-cute bow tie look but somehow got the super geek look instead. He looks like we just interrupted him while he was organizing his pocket protector. For my next handmade cat project, I plan on making him his very own snuggie (warning: the site talks!). Because the snuggie is just that awesome. Every person and their cat need to have something in their wardrobe that looks like wizard pajamas. Also, wouldn’t “Gandalf’s pajamas” be an awesome band name??

(also, pay no attention to the crazy unorganized bookshelves and closet…)

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blerp.

November 15, 2008 at 2:42 pm (cats, crafts, just pure awesome, life in general)

i was supposed to be at the ren faire this weekend, but instead i got sick. stupid, stupid stomach. possibly caused by exposure to estrogen at work, but most likely just a bug. i busted my butt this last week making kilts for my dad and the boy, which came out pretty freakin’ awesome if i say so myself, which i do. i didn’t get a chance to make myself something for the faire, so i guess it’s ok that the universe conspired to keep me from going.

because i don’t have much else to offer for this post, here’s a picture of kiwi, looking cute while plotting disaster, i’m sure:

img_5184bthe pic was edited slightly because there may or may not have been a nipple trying to get in on the picture originally… you know, like that person who stands in the background of pictures and poses even though they are not actually being photographed on purpose. except in this case it may or may not have been a nipple. anyway, focus on kiwi! he is cute! look at his massive cuteness! he’s taken to enjoying sitting in my lap, which is a pretty novel experience for me as a cat person- usually, the cats i’ve had have just sit near me, not on me, or will sit in my lap but if i try to touch them they get pissed. kiwi is unique in another way, too…he likes to sit on my lap best when i am on the toilet. such a weirdo. but so cute, so how can i resist??

in other news, we have a fruit fly infestation in my apartment and it is gross. also, they drive kiwi crazy, which amuses me, but not enough to stop squishing every bug i encounter. for some reason their strong hold appears to be the dishwasher, so i’ve been randomly running the dishwasher to kill the crap out of them. they seem to be on the decline but they are sneaky little jerks… when i was an undergrad, i worked in a building that housed a lot of comparative biology labs- that is, people studied lots of random animal models in that building. people also used lots of really sensitive equipment, so pesticides were not allowed in the building- so not only did we get lots of icky bugs from outside, but whenever i saw fruitflies in the lab, i always worried that they were escapees from labs- so if i squished them, i was squishing someone’s work. or that it was a mutant and killing it would release a pheromone that would attract 755,839,202 of its closest friends and relatives to destroy me. at home, though, i feel no such fear. those little jerks came in on my bananas, and they will go out by my rolled up research papers.

sidenote: the misadventures of flapjack may be one of the weirdest shows i’ve ever had on in the background while blogging.

oh, what’s that? you need more kiwi? well, who am i to dissappoint?

img_51831oh kiwi, your cuteness is the sunshine of my life. but you are such a little bimbo cat…so pretty, less smart. and how come my arms look so oddly manly? hurumph.

speaking of hurumph, why do i love the show frisky dingo so much? i think i have a girl boner for xander crews. maybe because he’s naked for basically the entire first season? perhaps, perhaps.

in case you are wondering, i am supposed to be working on a presentation right now. that’s why my blog is so meandering. anything to avoid working! even though this presentation is crazy important! another good reason i did not go to the ren faire this weekend. the presentation itself is done, i just need to read up on the background info. it may be strange of me, but i think i should probably know what the heck i’m talking about when i give the presentation…

i’m still not happy with my stupid job. my boss hates me and continually either patronizes me or acts like i know nothing. actually, i think that the main reason i need a new job. i have an extensive scientific background, dammit. when we talk about binding proteins, i know a thing or two. when we talk about steroidogenic proteins, i can hold my own in a conversation. i have enough background that when something in a presentation seems off to me, there’s a good chance it is and i’m not just dumb. so why is it, when i ask questions in lab meetings, i’m given blank stares from the students and “you are so dumb” looks from my boss? it’s been almost two years, people, you’d think they’d have figured out that i am not just a research tool and that maybe, just maybe, i know what i’m talking about. jerks.

ok, i’m inspired to go finish my presentation now. go meg go!

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pics!

October 8, 2008 at 11:08 am (cats, life in general)

in an effort to enjoy my vacation, i’m taking pictures of things i love and showing them off in this post. if i can’t go anywhere for my vacation, at least i can enjoy what i have!

(still no call on the job, by the way…dammit)

my favorite room in our apartment has to be the balcony- in the fall, at least. not so much in the summer- anyone from central or south texas knows what I’m talking about! i took some pics to show it off, since i just redecorated it (read: replaced all the dead plants with live ones that i hope i will remember to water). look at how pretty!

balcony

ok, well, it looks better in real life, really. and the chair is super, super comfy. and can you see the creepy awesome little gnome ball on the table? i love him. his name is george-the-creepy-gnome-ball-guy. there are also xmas lights all over the place (but tastefully!) that you can’t see in this picture, but they totally look cool. the cats appreciate the balcony, too:

in this photo, kiwi is trying to find dead leave to chomp on, while moon is planning her escape. see, the door to the right leads to stairs that connect to the main stairs leading to the ground (we’re on the third floor). no matter how many awful experiences moon has when she does manage to escape, like meeting dogs, other cats, babies, etc that all try to destroy her, she still tries like to crazy to escape as often as she can. hence the cardboard behind the plants- the screen that normally contains the balcony comes up on the edges, giving moon a perfect escape hatch (or, allowing other cats to come in and poop in the corner). so, when i’m on the balcony with the furballs, i have to watch moon to make sure she hasn’t found some other escape hatch that i didn’t think of and block. such a little furry pain in the butt. as for kiwi’s obsession with eating dead leaves…whatever. as long as he doesn’t get sick. he seems pretty happy, and i think really he just chews them ’cause he likes the crunch then spits them out. moon on the other hand likes to chew on the live aloe, and since i have no idea if that is bad for kitties or not, i have to restrain her when she gets in chompy moods. such a weird little cat.

anyway, the balcony is my favorite spot to read in the whole apartment- i still love my ebook reader, by the way! i take it and some coffee to the balcony, bring the cats if they are being good, listen to the birds and enjoy the weather while reading away. i can even convince myself that the highway i can hear sounds a little like the ocean. better than any coffee shop, let me tell you! i can be in my pjs, i never have to hope to get the best seat, since i always get it, and i can leave my laptop out when i want to go pee rather than packing it up and hauling it into the bathroom with me. plus no one talks to me! i hate it when i’m reading at a coffee shop or restuarant and someone asks “hey, what are you reading? let’s chat and make annoying conversation even though you are obviously not here to talk!” once some old texan guy walked past my table (back when i lived in port a) and said “watch out, you might expand your mind.” um, thanks buddy. this may come as a shock but lots of people i know, who are my age or younger, enjoy reading. get over your ‘my generation is totally smarter than yours’ attitude.

aaaaaanyway, i really need to do some crafting this week. i’ve been thinking about knitting a lot, possibly because i’ve rediscovered my yarn stash. anyone need a scarf? that’s about my skill level. i want to get one of those huge knitting looms and make a blanket or something…but that might require buying lots of expensive yarn. scarves only require two or three skeins, which is more what my attention span and budget can handle.

this is what kiwi (and probably everyone else) thinks of my knitting musings:

yes, well, shut it.

two more days ’til my birthday! i love birthdays!!! i love getting all the attention, and just the fact that i’m alive and was born is nice, too. plus 27 seems like it’ll be a pretty sexy year. i love spoiling people on their birthdays, and always hope someone will spoil me on mine. that hasn’t really happened since my 18th birthday, but i keep hoping. i’ll blog about my best birthday ever later in the week, i think. we’ll see. now, it’s time to read!

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a happy thought.

January 15, 2008 at 8:37 pm (cats)

clio is as addicted to coffee as i am. the difference is that she just sits and smells the coffee while i actually inhale it 3 or 4 cups at a time (at least); she never takes a drink of the coffee. i wonder if she gets a caffeine buzz from the smell. i wonder if it’s just the smell that she likes or the warmth of the coffee, or some combination. she doesn’t do this if i have tea…
she also likes it when i spank her little cat butt, so obviously she can’t be trusted. “never trust a cat that enjoys a good spanking,” that’s my other motto. bad cat.

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i hate winter

January 2, 2008 at 12:21 pm (cats, cold)

ok, so austin doesn’t get much of a winter so i really shouldn’t complain, but i always end up getting sick in the winter. yeah, yeah, everyone does, but i don’t care- it’s my blog and i’ll bitch if i want to. my left tonsil is so swollen it feels like it’s going to explode, and the meds i’m on make my stomach hurt. i just want to go back to bed but i have so much crap to do and so many bills to pay…bleh. it’s so cold we actually turned our heater on (outrageous!) and the stupid dry, warm air is making my throat even worse. time to go restock my popsicles…

on a lighter note, our cat jellybean did something freakin’ hilarious yesterday. she’s an indoor/outdoor cat, and when she wants in she meows gently at the door. yesterday, she meowed madly- i thought the hounds of hell were after her she was meowing so crazy. i opened the door and saw that she had very proudly brought me a mouse, in the way that cats that love you bring you stuff they catch because they love you. only, jellybean had brought me a toy mouse. where the hell did she get it?? not that i’m complaining, i’m very happy she didn’t bring me a real mouse, dead or alive, but wtf? not only that, but she had a cut on her face that had a claw sticking out of it- apparently she fought with another cat for said toy mouse, and won. she was strutting around like crazy, too. so cute, so weird…

so sick, so sleepy…

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