Sunday, June 29, 2008

My bike is evil

I must have done something really mean to my bike, because it is out to get me. First, it face-planted me into the sidewalk when I tried to take it over a sweet jump (which was really just a buckled sidewalk but my Studly Hubby pointed out it sounds way cooler to call it a sweet jump) and then it tried to kill all my friends today by throwing me into them when I meant to simply dismount (my foot got caught in the pedal clip). I have another awesome bruise forming on my knee and a scrape. Now I am afraid of buckled sidewalks AND my clip-in pedals. Gah. And I learned one more time (second time in two weeks) that falling down really hurts. Thankfully I haven't fallen down while going fast (yet) so I'm not afraid of going fast... yet.

The really great thing about this is that no matter how dumb I look when I fall off my bike it still takes down my Geek Factor. I am now way less Geeky than my Studly Hubby, who got a whole bunch more geek points this weekend by geeking out at Pixar in San Francisco. He's going to post about it on his blog sometime soon.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

The bachelorette

My Studly Hubby has left me! He's off for a weekend of fun in San Francisco and I'm here holding down the house and recovering from the nasty cold I caught at the beginning of the week.

It's lonely here! And our house is kind of a pigsty. Hopefully I can clean it up a little (instead of make it worse) while I am here by myself.

Without the Studly Hubby around I have to do a bunch of stuff that he normally does. Tonight I picked up the veggie box (he reminded me to do this by leaving the old box so that I smacked into it on my way in the front door), put away all the veggies, and made myself some dinner (burrito from the burrito stand for $4.75). I also will have to open a new jar of jelly tomorrow, which I will be psyching myself up for tonight. It's amazing how quickly one becomes dependent on their spouse, no matter how independent one pretends to be.

To make up for his absence, the Studly Hubby left me a bouquet of flowers on dining room table. What a sweetie!

Monday, June 23, 2008


Slugs have been eating my dahlias (see the eaten leaves in the photo above). I spent $10 on the bulbs and a good half hour planting them, and I'll be mad if I let those slugs win.

Not being from the region, I had no idea how to make war on a bunch of slugs.

So I did what anyone would do in my situation: I Googled SLUG MURDER.

I got all kinds of interesting and very strange sounding suggestions, from going outside at night with a headlamp and squishing them to spreading the ground with organic sharp things like eggshells and diatomaceous earth (like sand).

The best sounding thing was to kill them with slug killer (available in a variety of forms) but after consulting with my neighbor I decided against that because slug killer as it turns out can also kill dogs and cats (these slugs must be TOUGH!).

A good alternative, I was told, is beer.

So I dubiously went out and set up beer traps. I didn't have any cheap beer so the slugs were going to get my nice local Pyramid Heffeweisen beer, which smelled delicious as I poured it out and laid it around the yard.

As you can see, I caught some slugs! I got 5 total. They are much smaller than I thought they would be. We'll see if I get more tonight. I was beside myself when I saw them, but then I started to wonder... how long can I keep them around in the beer before I have to waste another one of my precious Pyramids and start all over? And how long am I going to have to keep this up? Well unless one of you has some advice (Peggy...? Eric...?), I guess that will have to be my next Google search.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Seattle's Naked Bike Riders!

As we all know, being naked in public is generally illegal - but there are some unofficial exceptions.

One exception: body art. When a person is naked, but you can't tell because their bodies have been completely covered with body art, then are they still technically naked?

Or if the body art is beautiful, or the body itself is beautiful, then can you say it should be allowed to be viewed for the purpose of the art?

So how do YOU feel about being naked? In public? Would you do it if you had a chance to be a piece of art, show expressive freedom, or be part of an entire movement?

How about this: would you be naked on a bike (doesn't this seem uncomfortable)?

Would you be naked on a bike, covered in body art, riding with hundreds of other naked painted riders, in front of thousands of people??

This is the case for the 150-plus bikers in the annual Naked Bike Riders of Fremont, a regular unofficial part of the Summer Solstice Parade and events in Seattle. Ten streakers started this tradition in the early '90s, which quickly became a largely controversial group effort to evade the police (on bikes, with some body paint), and eventually led to a well-accepted art form and widely attended and publicized event.

Highlights from this year:

1) The family that painted themselves as The Incredibles (kids in tow behind)
2) The painted young man two neighborhoods away that was caught asking for directions (he had minimal clothing on at that point which I'm sure was removed later)
3) The stray naked biker we saw up close - totally oblivious to the fact that she was naked by herself in a crowd of thousands (and the crowd, for the most part, was oblivious to her)

4. The effort people made to get good seats for the show - people climbed trees, statues, planters, and even hung their own hammock to get above the crowd.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Toilet paper wedding dresses!

I don't think I would have wanted to actually wear one at my wedding, but they sure are pretty!

Pictures are from the original article on CNN.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Raccoon in the yard!

A raccoon was spotted today 5 ft from our front door, snuggled in a tree and looking a little disoriented. I've never seen a raccoon so close before! Unfortunately I had to go in and get my camera (and go through the back door so I didn't get attacked) and by the time I got it loaded up the raccoon had disappeared. Below is a picture to give you the general idea of what I saw though. Raccoons are cute! But I hear they can be MEAN.

Severed foot?

According to CNN, FIVE severed feet have washed ashore just up the coast from me near Vancouver BC in the last 11 months. If you don't believe me, you can read the original article here. It's such a weird story!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

East Coast Adventure

A week ago we returned from a long trip to the East Coast and I'm finally getting around to posting some pictures and a short re-cap of our trip.

I flew out first to Boston to attend the American Society of Microbiology general meeting. This is an annual meeting with HUGE attendance and was really too big for my attention span. The conference center was said to hold 16 football fields and I missed at least one good talk because I simply went the wrong direction.

I had a very fun tour on the first day of Boston and all their famous historic sites. I forgot my camera, but one of the most striking features of the tour were all the OTHER tours going on at the same time with tour guides dressed as revolutionary soldiers, famous historical figures (such as John Adams), or as a New England puritan. It was weird to see these people leading tours around the city but even weirder to see them by themselves on the subway or walking down the street (esp the soldiers because they had rifles).

I had a great time partying with my old Minnesota homeboys (and girls) and catching up on everyone's new lives (everyone is doing such different things now, it's so neat!).

On the last day of the meeting my Studly Hubby flew out and met up with me, and we headed up to NYC to hang out with my famous Aunt Margot. She just finished cutting a new bluegrass CD. We listened to her new CD, had an awesome dinner with her in her very greek neighborhood in Queens, then went into Manhattan for an awesome night at a hip jazz nightclub where we listened to a band play jazz-tango and had glamorous NYC hamburgers and wine.
The next day we went to the Museum of Modern Art which was spectacular. We saw art by Monet, Picasso, van Gogh, Seurat, Dali (my Studly Hubby's favorite), Frida Kahlo, Pollock, Warhol, and loads of other good stuff. We stopped in the middle at the cafeteria for a fancy tea and desert break. In addition to many awesome classics, they had lots of weird stuff that will haunt me for the rest of my life, so it was a memorable trip.

Afterwards we were exhausted and lounged around Central Park, checking out all the other afternoon loungers of New York.

The next day we headed out by ourselves for a day of touristing. We stopped at NBC studios to take some pictures (we are now big fans of 30 Rock, which is filmed there).

We also cruised through chinatown, stopping for multiple bubble teas in air conditioned cafe's to cool down (it was over 95F that day). And we went to the awesome Mac Store on 5th Ave, (the store is under the cube). That was weird.

At the end of the last day, we went to Spamelot on Broadway. It wasn't as good as the Producers, which we saw several years ago when we were there, but it was still pretty awesome. Broadway is so neat-o.

Bike accident!

I've already fallen off my bike and I've only been bike training for one week (2 rides!). Yesterday morning we had a beautiful ride down Lake Washington Blvd, with a delicious brunch afterwards at Cafe Flora, and then in the last 0.2 miles from home I went flying over a buckle in the sidewalk, my bike bottomed out, and I tipped over. Let's note that my Studly Hubby, who was right in front of me, flew over the same sidewalk buckle and made it without incident so it's not my fault that I fell. It's my bike's fault.

Well I learned once again that the sidewalk hurts when you land on it.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Iowa is on CNN ... AGAIN!

Iowa has been on CNN over and over again in the past few days... and it's all horrible. There was an awful tornado last week and now this week the entire state seems to be under water. I hope for all Iowans (and other midwesterners) that the flooding recedes very soon and you all dry out quickly.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

7,000 gallons of gas

We were on a trans-continental flight (NYC to Seattle) and got delayed on the runway because of something-or-other, so the pilot thought he would entertain us with an interesting factoid.

That flight would burn 7,000 gallons of gas, which cost the airline $24,500 (just for that flight!). He figured it out per customer, and it was $150 in gas just for each person on the plane (one-way).

No wonder the airlines are going bankrupt, no wonder the world is running out of gas, and no wonder we're having a climate crisis.

At $24,500 per transatlantic flight, wouldn't it be in the best interest of the airlines to find a way to fly on solar power?

Monday, June 09, 2008

A tale of two farts in two cities

Two farts, two cities. That was my week.

You may be disappointed to hear that both the farts were in the first city.

In the second city, we went to a jazz concert and to the broadway show Spamelot.

The first fart was in front of my good friend Uncle KT, for all the world to hear. Strangely, the second fart was also in front of Uncle KT, for all the world to smell. But, it's a busy world and she may have been the only one that noticed. She was very polite and didn't say anything. I'm pretty sure she noticed, and I noticed that she noticed, and then I got extremely distracted by her noticing, and my brain went blank and by the time I thought of something funny to say the timing was off. Later I realized how funny it was that I farted not once, but TWICE, in front of Ms. KT, and I began to wonder what evil powers Ms. KT was avenging on me. We worked back-to-back for over a year and I don't think I ever farted the whole time (that she noticed), so she must have gained this evil power since I left (and harnessed it well for her evil doing).

Everyone better watch out for Ms. KT the fart-avenger. If she has it out for you, you better run!

Friday, June 06, 2008

From Seattle to Boston to New York City

I am a blog-deliquent this week because I am touring around the East Coast catching up with friends and hitting the scenes. I spent the first half of the week at the American Society of Microbiology General Meeting in Boston (at a fancy-pants downtown hotel) and saw many of my old friends from Minnesota and quite a few other people I knew. Then Wednesday night the Studly Hubby joined me at my fancy-pants hotel for a brief visit with the Minnesotan crowd before we took off together for NYC to visit my famous Aunt M and do the NYC scene.

Today we are hitting the Modern Museum of Art and then going to a tango event at a bar in Manhattan. Tomorrow we are cruising the Farmer's Market and then hitting some sites in Manhattan before going to Spamelot on Broadway. Hopefully I can get a few pictures!