Monday, April 30, 2007

More interviews

Check out Mrs. V's answers to my questions. I love all the insider info about the CDC.

And just because I don't have anything interesting to post, here are some questions for you all to answer in the comments, if you so desire:

1. Would you rather be a giant or a midget?

2. What is the best vacation you ever took?

3. When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

4. If you could choose a different time (you know, like the renaissance, or the 1980's) in which to live, what would you choose?

5. Have you ever been arrested?

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Weekend Report

Friday- After work, a bunch of coworkers and I headed to Charlie's Kitchen to drink some beers and watch the Sox game. The highlight of the evening was a whoopie cushion that my cousin Myles acquired it at Boston Bowl last weekend. I brought it to work on Friday, and after a couple of failed prank attempts in the lab, we decided to take it out with us. We tried to get a couple of strangers on the #1 bus by hiding the whoopie cushion underneath a copy of the Metro on an empty seat, but both potential victims lifted up the paper before sitting down. A new, improve strategy was formed and employed at Charlie's Kitchen. Instead of hiding the whoopie cushion, it is far more effective to simply slide it under someone's butt right as they are sitting down. We got each other basically every time someone stood up to go to the bathroom (one would think that everyone would be on high alert, but the beers and the game were distracting enough to forget about the whoopie cushion entirely until...PHHBBBBTT!), and then we started playing the joke on people at other tables. Luckily, everyone laughed and no one got beat up. After that, I stopped by to watch a friend's band play at Tommy Doyle's, and then headed home for the night.

Saturday- After a busy day of work, draft watching, and soccer, I went to Latin Night at the Roxy with Lisa, Maria, and Liz. It was quite an experience, right from the start: we got fully frisked by security as we walked in. The drinks were really expensive, but good, and the crowd was very Latin. Suit jackets, gold chains, and the occasional pair of white leather loafers on the men, and as for the girls, mini shorts are the new mini skirt. The music was a mix of salsa, merengue, reggaeton, and bachata. Judging by the amount of bachata, there were a lot of Dominicans in the crowd. No Manny or Papi, though. We all danced with very short men, and it was nice change of pace to do something other than drink at an Irish pub in Southie.

Sunday- I decided that my wardrobe needed some updating, and since I'm on a grad school budget, that means one thing: Old Navy. I bought a ton of stuff there and picked up a few more items at Filene's Basement in Framingham. Back at home, I decided that it is time for the seasonal switch- I packed away most of my heavy sweaters and winter clothes, and unpacked the skirts and tank tops. Hey, I'm an optimist. Do you know what else I'm optimistic about? Randy Moss on the Patriots!
Oh, and my interview with Tom is complete.

Friday, April 27, 2007

A sheep in dog's clothing?

Japanese movie star Maiko Kawakami said on a talk show that she was distraught that her new poodle didn't bark and refused to eat dog food. Why? Oh, because it's actually a lamb. Reportedly, hundreds of Japanese women bought lambs, believing that they were purchasing a trendy breed of poodle.

Although I've seen this story on several news sites, I am somewhat skeptical, and in this report, Japanese police deny any knowledge of the lamb scam.

But if it were true, I bet those women are feeling a bit, well, sheepish. Ba-dum-bum.

Thursday, April 26, 2007


I got interviewed by Sara from No Tea For You (which, for some reason like mild dyslexia, I often read as A Note For You).

Here are her questions and my answers:

1. If money were no object what one thing would you do to change the world? Provide everyone in the world access to sufficient amounts of food, drinking water, and medical care. Wait, that's three things. I'll go with the clean water.

2. What one item of clothing or accessory do you currently own that you love the most? Why? I am an outerwear fiend. I love jackets and coats. My light tan belted trench coat is currently my favorite. I bought it last spring right during a time when it seemed like nothing was going right for me, and the mere thought of the perfectness of the coat could make me smile.

3. You have been picked to be on Survivor. Probst says you get to bring one luxury item. What do you bring? Hmmm, everything I think of seems to be battery powered (iPods, people, get your minds out of the gutter!) so I'll go with a nice, expensive bathing suit, assuming that I'll be going somewhere tropical. Wait! Scratch that. A fancy camera.

4. If you decided to change your name what would you change it to? When I was a kid, my constant companion, a neighborhood boy named Ian, and I used to pretend we were dogs. ALL THE TIME. To the extent that we failed kindergarten screening and got sent to pre-kindergarten because we kept interacting in barking dog code. He was a Great Dane named Frenchie and I was a poodle named Penny. So I'll go with Penny, short for Penelope.

5. You are replacing Rosie on The View and get to pick the first guest. Who do you pick? Oooh, good question! I'll go with the elusive J.D. Salinger. Second choice: Bob Dylan.

Hey bloggers, want to play? Here are the rules if you want to participate:

1. Leave me a comment saying, “Interview me”, or words to that effect.

2. I will respond by emailing you five questions, but I get to pick the questions, no questions asked. Any questions?

3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.

4. You have to include this explanation, and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.

5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Prepare for the NFL Draft

Every year, prospective NFL players take the Wonderlic Personnel Test, which tests problem solving ability and is considered a decent measure of overall intelligence.

Try out a mini-version here. I got 7 out of 9 correct, which correlates to a 39. Same as Brian Griese, and more than double Dan Marino.

Here's a blog post which lists many players' reported scores. Tom did better than Peyton, but Eil beat them both. And Vince Young? Ouch.

In other news, a 4-year old gets ABSOLUTELY DRILLED by a wide receiver during a game in Colorado. He's okay, so you don't have to feel too guilty if you laugh at the video. Um, allowing little kids to roam around on the field during football games? Maybe not such a good idea.

Spanish Table

One of the fun things about being a scientist, especially in Boston, is that it's a very international discipline. Benefits include delicious ethnic food at the annual pot-luck, and for me, a chance to practice my Spanish a bit (although I don't take advantage of it nearly as much as I should). A couple of years ago, one of the American girls organized a little club of native and non-native Spanish speakers, which we named Spanish Table. We get together every couple of months, but in truth, the outings tend to center around food, libation, and departmental gossip rather than language practice. Last night, we went over Marly's apartment for tapas and wine. Mmmmm.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Dance Class

So, last night was my first ballroom dancing class at BCAE. It was surprisingly fun. The instructor is a tiny old man, and the assistant is a young woman who didn't speak once or even crack a smile. There are about 20 students, half men and half women, ranging in age from about 25 to 50. And I wasn't the tallest, even with heels on! Everyone was completely clueless, which was a relief, because even though the class was listed for beginners, I was afraid that it would be filled with ballroom dance sharks. We learned the waltz, and switched partners constantly, so you get to meet everyone in the class. Most everyone was friendly and seemed a bit bewildered to find themselves dancing with a roomfull of strangers. The girls were what you would expect, a mixture of urban 20-somethings and some older divorcees. The guys were more varied: a 50 year old biker with a shaved head and tattooed arms, a nerdy British guy named Pierce, a tall young black guy, a smoker with a Southie accent, and a couple of short, chubby guys. I already have an enemy. One of the women is a classic bitch. She looks about 50, with expensive clothes and the kind of sinewy, ropy arms that result from years of calorie restriction. She and one of the men were chosen to demonstrate one of the steps for the class, and they screwed up a couple of times, which lead to her throwing up her arms and loudly sighing in exasperation while glaring at her partner. What a bitch. And the thing is, SHE was the one screwing up by taking an extra step- the instructor called her out on it, too. Even if it was her partner's fault, there's no need to act like a fucking rude prima donna.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Weekend Report

Friday- My cousin Myles came to visit, and we went bowling with Ern and Pat at Boston Bowl, the shadyriffic 24 hour bowling alley in Dorchester. We opted for candlepin, which, in Massachusetts, is just known as "bowling," whereas the type of bowling that is played in the rest of the nation is known as "big ball bowling" or "cartoon bowling." I remember the first time I went bowling in South Bend...I don't know what I found more shocking, the fact that I walked on on a lady doing lines of coke in the women's bathroom, or the fact that that crazy bowling you see on cartoons, with the big balls that people stick their fingers in, actually exists.

Anyways, Boston Bowl was packed, mostly with teenagers, so we had to wait a while for a lane. However, in addition to the people watching, there were many diversions to keep us entertained. Like the Weirdest Vending Machine Ever:

Here's a closer look at some of the contents (in addition to the Rosin Bag, comb and nail clipper, and breath spray, pay special attention to the cloth bag in C5):

The arcade room was pretty fun, and even had an old Pac Man game.

The bowling itself was a grand time, although the mystery haze that fills Boston Bowl clouded the photo a bit.

Before leaving, our curiosity got the best of us and we spent $5.95 to learn what was inside the mysterious fabric bag, item C5 in the vending machine. Any guesses?

Saturday- Myles and I went to the Museum of Science. I was happy to see that many of my old favorites, like the dropping balls that form a bell curve, are still in existence. We also checked out the Darwin exhibit, and I couldn't help but feel a little giddy looking at some plant specimen collected by Darwin himself. There were also many original letters and notes on display from Darwin's famous voyage on the HMS Beagle, and some more personal items, like a list of pros and cons he wrote out when deciding whether or not he should get married. Apparently Darwin didn't watch a lot of sit-coms, because otherwise he would have known that putting such a list on paper is a very bad idea. After the museum, we took advantage of the nice weather and walked around downtown for a while. Myles took off Saturday afternoon, and I played soccer on Saturday evening then spent the rest of the night icing my ankle and watching The Upside of Anger. I was under the impression that this movie was a fluffy romantic comedy, when in fact it is a fairly serious drama- Joan Allen plays a bitter mother of four whose husband has just left her, and Kevin Costner is a washed up baseball player who becomes a constant companion to the family. Good acting, spot-on realistic dynamic between the mother, who was a total bitch most of the time, and daughters, but not the thoughtless, uplifting fodder I was in the mood for.
Sunday- Went for a long run around Castle Island, then met up with Lisa, Nikki, and Meg for a picnic lunch. I'm at work right now, and headed over MJ's for dinner and some baseball watching tonight.

Friday, April 20, 2007

List #33....Things You May Not Know About Me

  1. I have an inability to determine whether fabrics are wet or dry. If you live with me, you will often be subjected to the following request: “Touch these clothes and tell me if they are dry yet.”
  2. I only found out yesterday that Heather Mills (Paul McCartney’s ex) is an amputee. Did everyone except for me already know this? Probably.
  3. In eighth grade, I once called the boy I liked and played the cassette tape of “More Than Words” by Extreme into the receiver when he answered.
  4. Along with Snoop Dogg and Sublime, I am originally from Long Beach, California.
  5. When I watch the Red Sox play the Yankees, I have a special voice I use to make fun of Jorge Posada that involves me pretending that I have a lisp. "Hey Pothada, where's the ball?" As an aside, check out the new Sportcenter commercial with Ortiz and Pothada.
  6. I love love love cheesy movies about dancing. To the point that I signed up for a ballroom dance class. It starts on Monday. The odds of me being taller than all the guys in the class? Fairly high.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Taxi inferno

I think this picture of a cab on fire (from UH) is pretty awesome.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Slow week

Not much to post about this week- I've been busy preparing for a thesis committee meeting next week, and I really haven't done anything worth writing about, nor have I heard of any new interspecies friendships. Looks like the Nor'Easter is finally blowing its way out of town. Strong winds leading to strange occurrences seems to be a common theme in movies - The Good Girl, Volver, and The Holiday (not that I watched it three times last week or anything, no, that's impossible.) - so I was wondering if these winds of change (cue the Scorpions!) would bring some excitement my way, but alas, they only resulted in rattling windows and a shaking house.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Some lighthearted sports nonsense

Tim Duncan gets ejected for laughing. What? Watch the video here. Referee Joey Crawford then supposedly tried to pick a fight with the Big Fundamental. Tale of the Tape humorously breaks down who would be most likely to win, were such a fight to occur. Here's my favorite stat:

Posse Members

Crawford: Dick Bavetta, who's almost as fast as Charles Barkley and wears five pairs of socks every night.

Duncan: Tony Parker, who is French, Robert Horry, who is 53, and Manu Ginobili, who will instinctively fall down if Crawford even balls up his fist

Advantage: Crawford
(via Tom)

Next up, Red Sox announcers discuss in detail a pizza-throwing incident that took place during yesterday's game. Watch the video, and laugh. The slow motion replays with commentary killed me.
(via UH and My Friend Neal)

Gloomy days

Over 30 people killed at Virginia Tech. What a fucking nightmare.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Funny funny

I have no idea what exactly this is, but it made me laugh out loud. Stick with it after the old man; it gets funnier.

(thanks, Tina!)

Friday night on the Monster

First off, happy 30th birthday to my BFF, Kim!

and happy 5th anniversary to my sister Kerry and BIL Adam!

Last night, I watched the Sox defeat the Los Angeles Angels 10-1. The game started off slow, until Doug Mirabelli hit a home run in the 5th inning, opening up the flood gates. I like to think that I played some small part in this turn of events, because everyone in our section was bitching about how bad Mirabelli sucks, and I yelled something silly like "Don't listen to them, Doug. I believe in you! Hit a home run right to me!" Next swing- bam! Home Run!- although, not to me.

We had standing room only tickets for the Monster, and when we asked an usher where the good spots were, he told us that they sometimes leave the gates to the handicapped section open. I asked "Does that mean we can sit there if the seats are empty?" He replied "As an usher, I can't really give you permission to sit there," wink wink, nudge nudge. I said, "Well, what if we sit there, and if anyone comes and asks us to move, we'll move." The usher gave us the OK. Kim and I sat down, and eventually the other seats filled up with our standing-room-only brethren. In the sixth inning, a different usher and a cop came over and demanded that we show them our handicapped tickets. So we moved, only to have our seats taken by three young guys, who were clearly not handicapped. Minutes later, we overheard the cop telling the usher that the guys were his son and two friends. Seat stealing nepotists! Oh, the injustice! We concocted various methods of revenge, like, hey, let's call Fox 25 Undercover, and they can do a spot on non-handicapped people who use a cop to kick out other non-handicapped people (who were there first) from the handicapped section at Fenway Park. Um, maybe not. We opted instead to give them the stinkeye and then take a photo of me giving them the finger behind their backs, because we're mature like that.

Anyways, despite the cold and the seat thieves, the game was a blast! Here are some photos of Kim, Mike, Jason, and me:

Here are the seat stealers (Grrrrr...):

And here's a random picture of a dude who looked like a girl from the back (look at those flowing curly locks. His hair looks like mine, only way nicer, and way more conditioned.) taking a picture of guy dressed like a gorilla:

Friday, April 13, 2007

Classical violinst on the street

The Washington Post had a nice article up earlier this week, Pearls for Breakfast, which describes what happens when one of the top classical violinists in the world, Joshua Bell, dresses like a street musician and performs during the morning rush hour in a crowded Metro station.

I thought this little bit was interesting:

"The poet Billy Collins once laughingly observed that all babies are born with a knowledge of poetry, because the lub-dub of the mother's heart is in iambic meter. Then, Collins said, life slowly starts to choke the poetry out of us. It may be true with music, too.

There was no ethnic or demographic pattern to distinguish the people who stayed to watch Bell, or the ones who gave money, from that vast majority who hurried on past, unheeding. Whites, blacks and Asians, young and old, men and women, were represented in all three groups. But the behavior of one demographic remained absolutely consistent. Every single time a child walked past, he or she tried to stop and watch. And every single time, a parent scooted the kid away."

via Bob Congdon

Red Sox Friday

A few years ago, after spending an cold, rainy April night slightly miserable (the misery would have been rated higher than "slightly" were it not for the numbing effect of various beers) in the Fenway Park bleachers, I vowed never again to buy tickets to a Red Sox game at night in April. Weather here is just too dicey- you could end up with a beautiful spring night, or a frigid one that feels more like January. I will happily watch a Patriots game in arctic temperatures, but something about freezing my ass off while watching baseball just seems plain wrong.

Tonight, I will break that vow. Why? MONSTER SEATS, BABY! Okay, technically, they are standing room only, but whatever, I'll still be up there. I don't care how cold it gets.

In honor of tonight's game, here's

Dirty Water, by the Standells

Also, even though Dice-K lost in the home opener, I have high hopes, and I love the Nike commercial. It reminds me of this great ad from Lebron's rookie season, which I also loved.

Happy Friday, everyone!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

RIP Kurt Vonnegut, or The Children's Crusade: A Duty-Dance With Death

One of my favorite authors, Kurt Vonnegut, died yesterday at the age of 84.

Now do yourself a favor and read Slaughterhouse-Five if you haven't already.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Are you smarter than a 5th grader?

Take this quiz and find out.

I scored an 80%, so I am equally as smart as a slightly above average 5th grader.

My coworkers and I are currently in a three-way tie for first place.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Weekend Report

Friday- Went over to Caro's house and watched a Chilean movie called Machuca. The film, set in 1973, tells the story of two boys who become friends: Gonzalo Infante is a rich, pale, member of the upper class, and Pedro Machuca is a boy from the slums who arrives at Gonzalo's private school on scholarship. Despite the storybook plotline, the setting of the movie, as well as the talent of the young actors, give it gravity. The story begins at the end of Salvador Allende's presidency. Due in part to socialist policies, Chile is facing an economic crisis and seems to be on the brink of civil war, with pro and anti socialism demonstrations taking place daily. The rallies reminded me of the FSLN and Liberales parades that I saw when I lived in Nicaragua during an election year- flags, colors, songs, trucks full of people, the entire country infused with a political fervor unlike anything I have ever experienced in the United States. Countries that have suffered through brutal dictatorships and routinely flip flop between socialism and capitalism tend to have a very politically active populace, it seems. Anyways, the tension of the political backdrop of Chile mounts as the movie progresses and it soon infects everyone's lives. Even the rich have to stand in line to buy household items, and a parent-teacher meeting erupts into chaos when the parents of the rich pupils complain about the poor boys on scholarship mixing with their sons, and accuse the principal of being a communist. Suddenly, everything changes. Allende is brought down by a military coup led by General Augusto Pinochet. The military takes over the school, and in the most poignant sequences in the movie, Gonzalo watches as his friend Machuca and all of his neighbors are rounded up and driven away in trucks, never to be seen again. He then returns to his own house, to find his mother and friends calmly sipping drinks in the backyard, either blissfully unaware or cognizant and uncaring of the atrocities being committed in their own city. I really don't know anything at all about Chile, so I felt like I was getting a history lesson.

Saturday- Worked all day, went to a crazy man's house to pick up a jungle gym with my brother-in-law, met Lisa and Liz for drinks at the Playwright.

Sunday- Easter! Went to church (and this year I didn't even have to sneak out early to avoid and awkward encounter during the "peace be with you" handshake...but that's a story for another day). My friend and former soccer teammate Jonny was in town, so a bunch of the old gang got together for brunch at Johnny's Luncheonette in Newtown. After that, I headed to Framingham for Easter Dinner with the family. We had lamb, perhaps to symbolize the lamb of God? Oh my gosh, we ate Jesus! Dinner was followed by a choice of three desserts, and I tried them all- carrot cake, strawberry merange, and apricot tart. Yum. That cute baby in the photo is my youngest niece, Maggie.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Friday Fun

What's your state Easter egg? I like the Massachusetts one, but I can't figure out if it's all painted on the front, or if it's hollowed out and painted on the inside, like a diorama. Get out your shoeboxes and Saran wrap, it's diorama time! (link via Freakgirl)

Songs for your enjoyment:

Whole Wide World, by Wreckless Eric.

I had never heard this song until I watched Stranger Than Fiction (time to revoke my hipster music fan card, right?), and now I can't get it out of my head.

Can't Stand Me Now, by The Libertines.

Pete Doherty may be a big, drunken, drugged out douchebag face, but when it comes to music, he is absolutely brilliant. I think he is the UK's answer to Shane MacGowan. Unfortunately, I also think the chance of him releasing a great new album is on par with the likelihood of him dying of an overdose. But who knows, maybe he will live a long, fruitful life and fifty years from now, he'll be making jokes about snorting his father's ashes. Have you guys been following the Keith Richards gossip? Here's a synopsis: Keith says that he cut cocaine with his father's ashes and snorted it up. Press goes hog wild. Keith's PR people claim he was only kidding. Disney craps itself, then announces that Keith will not do any promotional work for the upcoming Pirates of the Caribbean movie, because he no longer fits Disney's family friendly image. I laugh, a lot.

My opinion? He totally did it. And seriously, Disney, this is Keith "everyone is stunned the dude is still alive" Richards. If you wanted family friendly, you should have gone with Yanni.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Elizabeth Bwtka

My dear friend Elizabeth,
Someone is Googling you repeatedly. They are being sent to this string of comments from my blog, so they now probably think that you are a big weirdo. I found this out using Google Analytics.

To whomever is googling Elizabeth Bwtka, fear not, she is fun, intelligent, and very attractive, and cares little about ribosomal proteins.

To Elizabeth Bwtka, would you like me to remove these posts?

Best way to start the day: with bacon

I woke up early this morning and met Caro for breakfast at Mike's City Diner in the South End before work. Love that place, love starting the day off by doing something a little different, and love diners in general. Mike's is the perfect place: coffee, bacon, eggs, tables of cops and construction workers, and waitresses that call everyone "sweetie."

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

The Opposite of Me

Every once in a while, I encounter someone who makes me think to myself “Wow, this person just like me, only the exact opposite.” For example, last time I was on a flight, I had the window seat and a couple around my age, maybe a few years older, had the seats next to mine. The girl was relatively pretty, wore designer jeans, and had a giant diamond ring. She was what I would describe as businessy. There are two bus routes I can take to work. The Number 9 goes directly to Copley and is jam packed with businessy types. All of the girls have the same highlighted, straightened hair and nice shoes, and probably are consultants. The men each carry a dark-colored messenger bag. The Number 10 also ends at Copley, via a methadone clinic and Boston Medical Center. The sparse riders mainly consist of nurses, junkies, and bums. I do not look out of place with my jeans, sneakers, or backpack, because Number 10 riders, as a rule, are not buisnessy. Okay, back to Airplane Girl. Her husband is not very good looking and seems like a dork. I immediately decide that she settled. Soon after takeoff, she opens up her laptop and begins drafting emails. I read them. (Oh, come on, like you wouldn’t?) “I’m going to be in Nashville next month and I am just DYING to introduce my husband to some authentic barbeque” she writes. Boom. Right there. Airplane Girl is the Anti-Me. Maybe someday I will own a $200 pair of jeans, maybe some day I will actually get married (although not to some dweeb I settled for, and I won’t have a huge diamond ring) but I would never, never use a sentence like “I am just DYING to introduce my husband to some authentic barbeque.” I bet Airplane Girl buys overpriced home decor at Anthropologie.

Example Number Two: Today, the quarterly issue of Notre Dame Magazine arrived. In the back, there is a little blurb for each graduating class, in which recent accomplishments of alumni are noted. Stuff like Sarah (O’Leary) and James Tuckerman (’98) are proud to announce the birth of their second child, Connor Hampton. Greg Everclear is a litigation lawyer in Omaha and serves on the board of the local alumni club. Although these people attended the same university as I did, even graduating in the same year, our lives have nothing in common. They don’t publish items like Eileen is still in graduate school. Eileen ate nothing but hot dogs for five days because she spent all of her money on a St. Patrick’s Day party. Eileen recently gave herself a black eye when she fell taking off her shoes.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Things I Love Right Now

1. Macaroons! I look forward to Passover every year for their light, coconut deliciousness.

2. Cooking Light magazine. My mom gave me a subscription for Christmas, and I love it. Most of the recipies are simple, fast, and most importantly, requiring ingredients that are available at my local supermarket. Tonight I made chicken baked in coconut curry sauce, and it was excellent. Although I added three times the amount of recommended curry, so it was excellent in the way that makes your face turn red and your eyes water.

3. The Internet, for instant answers to all sorts of questions. Earlier today, I was trying to come up with a retort for the inane statement "The United States isn't ready for a female President." and I found this site with data on female world leaders. Okay, so if you don't like Hilary Clinton, don't vote for her, but c'mon people, the United States can certainly handle having a female President. Are we really less "ready" than Finland, Chile, Nicaragua, Ireland, Liberia, or India? For heaven's sake, even Pakistan has had a female Prime Minister.

4. Swearing. I gave up swearing for lent, and although I've slipped up a few time, I've certainly cut back. Swearing is fun. And funny. I miss it.

Things I Don't Love Right Now:

1. Curt Shilling. Bring on Dice-K!

2. My frickin leg. I got hurt in my soccer game about 9 days ago, and now I'm concerned because the swelling hasn't subsided and the pain is getting worse. And one of my friends told me that someone she knew had similar symptoms and it was a bone chip in her leg, and now I'm getting paranoid. Basically, I collided with a guy running full speed and his kneecap hit the side of my calf, a few inches above my ankle. The impact was comprable to someone hitting you as hard as they could with a baseball bat. It hurt really bad at the time, but not so much that I couldn't walk or finish the game. Despite a nasty bruise, for a few days it felt okay so I went swimming and rode the bike at the gym (probably a bad idea). Since Friday, the swelling has gotten worse and it hurts A LOT. I guess I should probably go get it checked out.

Weekend Report

Friday- Went out to dinner with friends at one of my favorite sushi restaurants, New Ginza in Watertown. So good! We kept things interesting by devising a series of sushi-eating challenges. For example, for one round, everyone had to use their chopsticks with their opposite hand, and whoever dropped their sushi had to eat a scoop of wasabi as punishment. After that, we went out for a bit and then caught an opening night show of Blades of Glory, the new Will Ferrell comedy about men's figure skating. I laughed for almost the entire movie, and even snorted at one point.

Saturday- Went to see my friend Chris' band, Muy Cansado, played at the Paradise Lounge. They sounded great and it was a really fun show. They were followed by Apple Betty, and adorable all-girl pop rock band. The headlining act was The Ramoniacs, a Ramones tribute band, and after seeing two talented, original bands, there just seemed to be something fundamentally uncool about a band who pretends to be another band. As for the NCAA tournament, I picked Georgetown to beat UCLA in the final, so although I was close, I'm definitely out of the money this year. Booo.

Sunday- Attended Ern's sister Ali's bridal shower at the Dorset tea house in Wellesley. We all got our own pots of tea and trays with mini sandwiches and scones- mmmm. I wasn't feeling so hot (still recovering from a cold and a massive leg injury from soccer), so I laid on the couch and watched two movies. Stranger Than Fiction is a quirky romance starring Will Ferrell in an atypical role for him- he plays Howard Crick, an IRS agent who begins to hear a woman's voice narrating his mundane life. The voice belongs to Emma Thompson, who plays an author writing a novel in which Harold Crick dies at the end. Maggie Gyllenhall plays the love interest, a spunky baker whom Howard audits. The slow pace and the oddness of the film reminded me a lot of Punch-Drunk Love. It was a little slow for me but I liked it a lot more than the second movie I watched, Marie Antoinette. Which sucked. Written and directed by Sofia Coppola, this film is essentially the antithesis to her much-celebrated Lost In Translation. L.I.T focused on characters, relationships, and dialogue, where M.A. is shot after shot of Kirsten Dunst looking languid, surrounded by luxurious shoes and pastries. All style, no substance. This version portrays the doomed queen of France and a naive young girl completely out of touch with life outside of royal palaces. Yes, the historical costumes are pretty, but the modern rock soundtrack didn't work at all. For a movie that does that juxtaposition well, look no further than Moulin Rouge. As for Marie Antionette, I'd rather watch a PBS or BBC special if I want to learn something about the French Revolution.