Isn’t it sad…

…when the fake swear words you use at work and in the presence of your grandparents become the expletives you end up using for real?

Exempli Gratia: Yesterday, Aaron left the serving spoon askew in the bowl of pasta salad. Just as I walked over to grasp the spoon and get my dinner, it fell out of the bowl and onto the floor. Did I use a righteous swear, like "dammit…" or "fuckin’…" or "sonofa…"? Nope. Instead, I said, "Poop!"

Poop.

In related news, Aaron told me that he was watching a show on the Food Network about Mexican food, and it gave the history of the chimichanga. See, there was a woman who worked at a Mexican carryout-type fast food-ish joint in California, where the Mexican food craze began. It was late and she was busy, and she’d just wrapped up a customer’s burrito. As she turned to get something else, though, she accidentally bumped it into the fryer. She started to swear, but censored herself halfway — those of you who know your swears in Spanish can probably guess what swear word ended up morphing into "chimichanga." Aaron and I decided that "chimichanga" must be Spanish for "fudge-a-ma-dudge." 🙂

Turns out the customer wanted to try the messed-up burrito anyway, ended up liking it, and the rest is history.

You know, this webpage design has lasted almost a year? I think this is a personal record. Although I must admit, I’m thinking about changing out the yo-yo picture. Time for something (slightly) new and different. We’ll see what happens with that…

This is why I shouldn’t get a tattoo. 😉

Mission Accomplished

Last night I finished matting and framing my photos for the fair, at the expense of one fingernail. See, I was trying to affix the sawtooth picture hangers to the back of my cheap-ass Ben Franklin photo frames, and first Kris and then Aaron jumped in to help. Aaron asked me to take out the photo and glass that I had so painstakingly managed to fit into the cheap-ass frame, so he wouldn’t accidentally break something. I was kind of annoyed at having them horn in on my little project, so I was a little too rough with trying to remove the glass… and bent my left middle fingernail all the way back. Waaay back, and down in the cuticle, too. It bled. Quite a bit. Aaron felt kind of bad. It’s still sore.

After that, we went to eat at Junction (on the patio!) and then to the Cla-zel to watch 28 Days Later. It’s a new take on the zombie flick, and the print at the Cla-zel has the alternate ending after the credits. I personally wouldn’t go to see a second showing, but I’m glad I saw the movie, and I would suggest you see it wherever you can. Very thought-provoking twist on the genre. I might write a review later… though I have a tendency to think about writing reviews, and never quite get around to it. 🙂

After we got back home (narrowly avoiding the Rocky Horror crowd… yeesh), Kris and Mark left, and Aaron and I decided that trying to pound nails into the frames (esp. at midnight) wasn’t going to work. So, Aaron busted out the Super Glue and I glued the remaining hangers onto their respective frames.

In case you were interested, the flower picture (technically, the Rose of Sharon) is an 8×10 in a 11×14 matte and wooden frame. The other three are 4×6 photos matted in 8×10 mattes with black frames. The mattes are actually the colors shown below, in my last entry. (Ain’t I smart? *chanting* I am so smart… I am so smart… S-M-R-T… er, S-M-A-R-T…)

So, yeah. I was a little concerned about the verbage in the rules for whether or not I was supposed to have my stuff framed. See, the rules state: No Frames except for Division A (that’s me). Then, in the Division A rules, it says: Standard size photos up to 16×20 matted on double-thick matte board. Photos larger than 16×20 must be framed, wired, and ready to hang. So, I was a little confused as to whether sizes smaller than 16×20 were allowed to be framed, or if it was optional, or what. I ended up framing them and bringing my photo sticky squares with me today when I submitted my photos, just in case they became photo nazis and made me remove my frames.

But my fears were unfounded. They were very nice and polite and moved me right along, giving me my claim tickets and making sure to tell me that I’d need them later to pick up my projects. The only snag in today’s Fair trip was having to park across the street in the so-far-empty fair lot. There was nowhere to park on the Grounds. Holy crap.

I still don’t have very much confidence in my ability to actually win anything, but I think I may just be trying not to psych myself up too much, in fear of a letdown when I go to see what I won (or didn’t win). We’ll see how this goes — judging is tomorrow, and the fair officially opens on Tuesday, I think. If it goes well, I may try my hand at the TFOP show that Eric told me about. I think some publicity, seeing my art displayed alongside other works of art, might bolster my confidence a little. I might start considering myself an amateur photographer finally, instead of just a hobbyist.

Wish me luck…

The Fair and Stuff

Well, I’ve decided for sure that I’m not going to the Bluecoats show on Sunday. I’m just too damn broke, and I’ve spent too many weekends in a row away from home. I’ve already seen my boys (and girls) once this season, and I can’t really complain about having no money when I spent it myself on a new brain for my computer.

I’m working 10am to 2pm on Sunday, after which I’m taking my four photography entries to the County Fair. I’ve got two of them already scanned to show you… hang on, and I’ll boot up Aaron’s computer and scan the other two.

[brief pause]

OK, here they are, in no particular order:

manual - black swamp arts festival, fall 2000 rose of sharon, spring 2002 cowtown, fort worth tx, summer 2003 wood county fair, summer 2002

Due to the fact that the fair’s categories are stoopid, I ended up entering in the Professional Division. I don’t think I’m going to win anything, and the best I could really do as far as prize money goes is break even on my entry fees, but I figured what the hell. The bike photo and the fair photo are classified as "photo journalism," while the flower and the building/skyscape are in the "landscape" category. Creative categorizing, I know… but I’d already decided which ones I wanted to enter before I knew what category options were open to me. Silly me assumed that it would be like any magazine photo contest, with a Portrait-Landscape-Humor-Digital-Blah-Blah-Blah entry system. But no. In the Professional Division, here are my choices:

  • Landscape
  • Children Portrait
  • Photo Journalism (colored)
  • "Ohio Pride" – Structures
  • Family Portrait
  • I chose the Pro Division because the Non-Pro Division had such categories as B/W Architecture, Digital Imaging – People, "Ohio Pride" – People, Digital Imaging – Nature, Panoramic, Children – Holiday, and Child – Special Event. So, yeah. They’ve got a pretty selective idea of what kinds of pictures they want displayed at Ye Olde County Faire. Maybe they try to mix it up each year so people will take pictures of different things during the year or something. Which would only make sense if you knew the categories a little more than one month beforehand, IMO.

    On a different topic, I’m really looking forward to spending some quality time with Aaron this weekend. Many recent breakups (and almost-divorces) amongst my friends and acquaintances have really made me appreciate the friend and partner I have in Aaron. We’ve been together for over seven years, and I still haven’t tired of him. I’m still excited to come home early and see him before he goes off to work. Thinking of him still makes me smile. Sure, I miss the early days of giddy butterflies and shaky caresses… but I love even more the sure, steady support and comfortable intimacy we share now.

    I had no idea in my angst-filled youth that there was something like this awaiting me…

    You Never Know When…

    BAM! …depression will strike.

    Yesterday was good, for the most part. Got to kiss Aaron before he left for work. Got my new 1.8GHz processor via UPS, and successfully installed it and its heatsink/fan onto my new motherboard. Played some Civ III. Found out that my current power supply should suffice for my new motherboard. Bid on some DDR RAM on eBay. Yes, I was OK yesterday, despite the fact that a.) Sky accidentally charged me for my free employee checks, and b.) neither Garza nor Paul nor Donna can accompany me to Canton for Sunday’s drumcorps show — so if I go, I go solo.

    Today is somehow a different story.

    I went to balance my checkbook today, and discovered a math error way back in May. So… after I spent an hour trying to figure this out, I’m still off $50 — but at least it’s an even amount this time. After almost-balancing my checkbook, I discovered that I really don’t have enough money to make my little daytrip on Sunday. (Hell, I barely have enough to pay rent.) I know Aaron would loan me money, but I just bought a new motherboard and processor with the extra money I had, and I need to teach myself to check my checkbook before I go willy-nilly on eBay. Sure, I haven’t heard the Bluecoats play Autumn Leaves in the parking lot after a show since I aged out. I can wait another year, then.

    This monetary problem also means no new RAM until I get paid one week from today.

    I’m also still waiting for my new checks to arrive. The ones I ordered (and got charged for) on the 15th. Since I ordered them at the banking center, they should have arrived sooner than the standard two weeks. As it is, I may have to have Aaron write a check for my half of the rent, anyway.

    And, as usual, this emotional tailspin I’ve sent myself into has bloomed into a full-blown depression. Not the clinical kind, the kind that lasts two weeks or more, the kind I seriously think I had in high school. Just the evening-long woe-is-me-fest. The kind where I look around at my living space and call myself a slob, but don’t manage to clean. The kind where I grab my fat rolls and call myself a lazy bastard, but don’t bother to exercise. The kind where I wonder if I’m really good enough to get a web design job, but don’t go looking for one. The kind where I don’t want to do anything but eat and laze around and feel sorry for myself. And probably play several hours of Civ III. And then feel guilty afterward.

    Oh, yeah… I’ve matured tons. Pshaw, right.

    P.S. – Somehow I can’t make myself be happy that Uday and Qusay are dead, despite the fact that they were undoubtedly corrupt individuals. My sense of justice would have been better sated to keep them as prisoners, or something along those lines. Death is too easy, and too final.

    Later…
    Sheryl just called and we talked for, like, 45 minutes. She read my entry and said it sounded like I needed to talk. I had been feeling particularly friendless, but I’m feeling better now. 🙂

    Alive

    A friend told me today, "I feel more alive than I have in years."

    Which leads me to wonder: Do I feel "alive"? When did I feel the most "alive"?

    I think I can safely say that this is not the most alive I have personally felt. Secure — sure. Grounded — you bet. Normal — strangely enough, yes. But "alive"? Not so much.

    I felt alive at the wedding, and during the honeymoon. I felt alive (to an extent) at graduation. I felt alive while marching drumcorps. I felt alive in the dorm for the most part, even (or especially?) by myself that last year at school. I felt alive the summer after high school. Hell, I felt alive the day I got my hair cut. 🙂

    So, what do I do to get that back? Buy a house? Get a new job? Have a kid? Lose weight? Redecorate? Something isn’t right, if I don’t feel "alive". These are supposed to be the best years of my life. Newlywed, no kids yet, stable job, stable finances, at the beginning of a wonderful lifelong journey. Doing things right. Not getting knocked up. Not working at McDonald’s.

    This leads me to believe that I need to seize something. Do something different. Change something. — Change myself? How?

    On the topic of changes: since both Sheryl and Eric have announced this on their respective pages, I’m safe to tell anyone who doesn’t frequent their blogs that they’ve broken up. Were this a private journal for my own edification only, like I used to have before this whole blog phenomenon, I’d have a lot of personal comments and gossip to blurt out here. But as it’s a public document, I’ll keep most of my musings to myself.

    All I’ll say is… wow. I didn’t see this coming. I know they were going to move off to Toledo, anyway, but now I know I’ll never get to hang out with Eric, and only very rarely with Sheryl, which is too bad. In the past couple of years, I’d grown fond of spontaneous visits either from them or to their place, and had really begun to appreciate both of them more, both individually and as a pair. I know they’re not really going far away (yet) or going to die or anything else incredibly final… and I know I didn’t really hang out with them a lot, anyway… it’s just that things won’t be the same anymore.

    I’m sure they’re thinking the same thing.