Wednesday, June 25, 2008

occam's razor

i'm having one of those weeks where you hear a phrase or concept for the first time in ages, and then you keep hearing about it from completely different sources. in this case it's occam's razor. i don't have anything to say about occam's razor, but everyone else seems to. and i like the word razor.

today was the kind of day we all need from time to time. an awesome day. thanks to kjersten, i am completely obsessed with a japanese tv show called Hana Yori Dango. it's a very affecting love story about hot, rich, high school guys and a scrappy, lovable "poor" girl named tsukushi. caught up in the "love is in the tv air" mood, i decided last night to dress up for school today.
i twisted my hair up into barrettes when it was wet and slept my way to curly hair, old school. then i fluffed it a bit, put on a dress i've worn to school several times before, and threw on some gaudy fake pearls that came with one of my lolita dresses.
the result: RIOTS. i caused a scene in every room i entered today! i had boys hiding around corners yelling "CUTE!" and showing their thumbs-up while peeking. they're in high school for heaven's sake. i had girls dragging their friends down the halls from other classes to gawk at me, and even the teachers had to pick their jaws off the floor. i must look like craaaap most days if that's all it takes to blow them away. however, the dress was also red, definitely shocking next to the black and navy uniforms. naoko told me i looked like fireworks! one junior boy, takeki (or "lauren's brother" as he asked to be called in class!) made me pinkie swear i would return to japan after visiting home this summer. i loved every minute of it.
it was also like magic juice for my most difficult class (largely full of rugby boys) who were the most docile i've ever seen today. the tides seem to be turning in that class, finally. i like to believe i'm winning them over, but it could be that they're maturing on their own. either way, it's nice to see some of the rude boys actually paying attention and asking me for help. they'll turn into sweethearts yet.
to be honest, i dressed up partially to prove to everyone that i can be cute, but especially to remind one mr. sugar that i have some sass. he looks painfully good every day (i definitely don't remember him dressing up every single day last year), and i'm tired of feeling tired and dull by comparison. take that oh-hot-one-who-always-understands-my-english-but-doesn't-have-the-guts-to-talk-to-me-anywhere-but-at-parties! ha!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

all is not lost

i keep suddenly remembering random pictures and documents forever lodged in the guts of my broken hard drive, and then consciously letting go of them emotionally.
and then miraculously finding them elsewhere!
one of the pictures i was sorry to never be able to revisit was that of my self-portrait just seconds before my very first class.
this is how i felt:

you'll notice i'm wearing a white shirt, in the calm, dead center of a heat hurricane, humidity at like a thousand percent, with my nerves to top it off. i essentially stepped out of the air conditioned office and swam to the fourth floor. as class wore on, i was sweating so much that my shirt became less and less appropriate. my own ill-timed wet t-shirt contest. as sean joked later, "they came for class, but they stayed for the show." that shirt has been hanging in my closet ever since.

Monday, June 09, 2008

The Great Butter Famine of '08

that's right. japan is out of butter. butter.
i was wondering what was happening! the last several times i've gone to the store, i wondered why i couldn't find it. i just figured they moved it. but no, they're just out. i don't understand all the circumstances (something to do with russia's willingness to pay more for butter, and a glut of dairy in hokkaido several years ago leading to disposal of the means to make more, aka, cows) but the bottom line is less fun on my baked potatoes and no more scones.
i admit, i was tickled when i first heard--who could imagine such a ridiculous shortage? to most, butter is an important but not vital ingredient. the fact that it probably heralds more dire shortages is disconcerting, though.
apparently a teacher at my school got wind of this problem early and stockpiled a big supply before the stores were out. i wonder if she'll start a basement butter business for those hard-up bakers?

Sunday, June 08, 2008

the new face of horror

friday i was checking the progress of my potted herbs. supposedly mint is an ant-deterrent, so it was strange that they were still crawling all over my seeding cilantro (which is in the same pot as the mint and rosemary), but it didn't seem like a big deal. i put out an ant poison trap to control the problem. however, when i read that ants can clear the way for other pests, i decided to investigate a bit more closely. cue fascinated horror.
you know those scenes in One Hundred Years of Solitude and The Poisonwood Bible where babies are devoured by fire ants? it was like that. when i lifted up the herb pot to see underneath, i found the cement black with live ant bodies. they poured out of the pot's hole in glittering, crawling waves. i wanted to hurl. then i wasted them with an entire can of freeze spray until there was nothing moving.


Thursday, June 05, 2008

five facts about the girl

1. i'm attracted to guys with big heads. this accounts in part for my attraction to many famous men like gerard way, billy corgan, vincent d 'onofrio, and non-famous men like the starer (you know who you are) and x-charlie. perhaps it's an innate need to balance my long skinny head with a broad one.
the smell of engine oil and gasoline on a man's clothes can stop me in my tracks. it's definitely a turn-on. and why share this news with the world? why not? i like knowing specific personal details about other people.

2. i'm left-handed, and i harbor no small amount of lefty pride. being left-handed broadcasts a predisposition for creative ideas and good style without saying anything at all. is that going too far? ;) i always notice when actors on TV use their left hands, including Simpsons characters. consequently, vincent d'onofrio, michael stipe, and my new favorite big-headed rocker, david cook, are left-handed.
not long ago, the left hand was considered evil and deviant in japan and america alike. however, now all the japanese kids know the term "southpaw" for some bizarre reason.

3. i don't like drinking cold drinks out of mugs. the textures are wrong together; somehow the cold beverage makes me uncomfortably aware of the thickness of the lip of the cup in my mouth and any irregularities therein.

4. my favorite songs are, without fail, the ones whose titles i hate most. this is a pickle. being an unabashed word nerd, i have visceral reactions to words and would really prefer to like the songs whose titles i find clever or beguiling. however i usually listen to those songs and find them inane or banal, whereas the songs with lame names rock a lot harder. additionally, no matter how much i love an artist, i can't listen to songs, even ironic songs, that have lyrics i find painfully corny such as Nanny Nanny Boo Boo (shudder) by le tigre and Teenage Love Song by rilo kiley, which prominently features the word "dissed" (convulsion).

5. i still think of colors in terms of their crayola crayon names from my childhood...midnight blue, plum, cornflower, cadet blue, thistle, salmon pink, carnation pink, goldenrod, raw umber, burnt sienna...

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

they stood up for love

happily i didn't lose this photo The Day The Hard Drive Died because it was saved on my blog, so i will happily post it now. when a subway ad stops me cold...

Sunday, June 01, 2008

i slept like crap for my butterflies

well, i might as well put this in here while it's still fresh and before it's ruined by the disappointment that characterizes these situations usually. last night i went out to dinner, yakiniku to be exact. once kara or i has suggested yakiniku, there's pretty much nothing that can get in our way of having it. when we got inside the restaurant, i saw a very cute teacher who worked at my school last year, but has since been transferred. i thought maybe he was sent very far away, so i was happy to see he was still in town. i waved to him and his group. kara and i sat down and began our meal, and i heard my name several times, which was somewhat curious. it seemed to go beyond, "that was a girl i worked with last year." he also tried looking over at us a few times, but i kept kara in my line of sight so i wouldn't be distracted.
we finished our meal and got up to leave. i went over to their table to say goodbye, and i asked if they were all friends. they said yes, they were on a volleyball team together. everyone was a little flushed from the beer. i asked where he worked now and he said a junior high in the next town. i was like, "well, great, see you later." i got up to leave and put my shoes on, but they called me back over. i paused and he rushed over with his phone. he was like, "can i have your number, is that ok?" i was like, "sure," so i pulled out my phone...thinking we would be sitting there figuring out what numbers and mail addresses to send and how, but he just took my phone from me and typed his number into it and then called his own phone so it would log my number. then he gave my phone back in a whirl, shook my hand, and said something about next time.
even when he was first coming over to me, i didn't think anything of it, but the fact that he seemed so nervous and in a rush to get my number (in front of his friends) gave me a big shot of adrenaline, and i walked out on shaky legs.
be what it may--for all i know he wants english tutoring or another volleyball team member (i am tall)--i was completely thrilled by the moment. it's rare that anyone makes any overtures at ALL, so to feel even for a flash that he had a crush on me was totally worth it.
the adrenaline took way too long to wear off, and i slept like crap.