So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
Ethnicity. that of my father and his father before him
Location Cherry Hills Vil, CO
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The Link To Zanzibar's Past
This is my page in the beloved art community that my sister got me into:
Extra points for people who know what Samarinda is.
The Phases of the Moon Module
The Tree and the Telephone Pole
I Do Not Know Their Names
Today I am Young
A Night Poem
Siren of the Sea
If I Were a Dragon
To the Dreamers Leave the Sky
The Honor of the Oyster
Return From San Diego
A Late Summer's Night
Of Dragons and Men
The Edge of the World
The Snake's Terror
Metaphysics and the Middaymoon
Of Adventures in Foreign Lands
The Rogue Wave: The Unedited Version
Adventures in the PRC
Voyage of Discovery
Drinking the Blood of Goats
Ticket for a Phantom Bus
Os peixes nadam o mar
Three Villages Far Away
The River Weser
Children I Should Have Kidnapped, Part I
Let's Get You Out of Those Clothes
If Underwear Could Speak
Croc Hunter/Combat Wombat
Only My Favorite Baseball Player EVER
Aw, Larry Walker, how I loved thee.
M: Science and Exploration
T: Cook a nice dinner
Th: Parties, movies, dinners
F: Picnics, the Louvre
S: Read books, go for walks, PARKOUR
Su: Philosophy, Religion
The Reading List
This list starts Summer 2006
A Crocodile on the Sandbank
Tales of the Alhambra (in progress)
Dark Lord of Derkholm
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
The Lost Years of Merlin
Harry Potter a l'ecole des sorciers (in progress)
Atlas Shrugged (in progress)
A Long Way Gone (story of a boy soldier in Sierra Leone- met the author! w00t!)
The Eye of the World: Book One of the Wheel of Time
From Magma to Tephra (in progress)
Lady Chatterley's Lover
Harry Potter 7
The No. 1 Lady's Detective Agency
Introduction to Planetary Volcanism
A Child Called "It"
Is Multi-Culturalism Bad for Women?
Americans in Southeast Asia: Roots of Commitment (in progress)
What's So Great About Christianity?
Aeolian Dust and Dust Deposits
The City of Ember
The People of Sparks
When I was in Cuba, I was a German Shepard
The Golden Compass
Clan of the Cave Bear
The 9/11 Commission Report (2nd time through, graphic novel format this time, ip)
The Incredible Shrinking Man
The Elves of Cintra
The Gypsy Morph
Animorphs #23: The Pretender
Animorphs #25: The Extreme
Animorphs #26: The Attack
A Journey to the Center of the Earth
A Great and Terrible Beauty
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
To Sir, With Love
Alice in Wonderland
Through the Looking Glass
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
The Hunger Games
Shadows and Strongholds
The Jungle Book
Beatrice and Virgil
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
No One Ever Told Us We Were Defeated
The Name of the Wind
Tao Te Ching
What Paul Meant
Lao Tzu and Taoism
Sand and Sandstones
Lost Christianites: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew
The Science of God
Great Contemporaries, by Winston Churchill
City of Bones
Around the World in 80 Days, by Jules Verne
Stranger in a Strange Land
The Old Man and the Sea
Flowers for Algernon
Au Bonheur des Ogres
The Road to Serfdom
De La Terre à la Lune (ip)
In the Light of What We Know
Devil in the White City
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August
How to Be a Good Wife
A Mote in God's Eye
want to read: Last Hunger Games Book, Honeybee Democracy, The Bell Jar
At the Crossroads
Monday. 7.13.09 5:48 pm
Well, it's official. Thalweg and the Welshman have departed Providence in search of greener pastures.
In the case of Thalweg, I was able to drive with her across the country and see her new place and help her move in and show her around and introduce her to some locals. It was really nice to feel connected to her new life and to get to spend some quality time together before being apart.
In the case of the Welshman all I really wanted was a designated moment when I could talk to him about his life and his plans and how he felt about all of it. My attempts were cancelled, thwarted, and then ruined, however, and eventually he was in a hurry and he left before I got to say goodbye at all. That left me feeling a bit depressed and confused. It's not fair of me in a way because he has so many friends and he hasn't the time to say a special farewell to each of them. I guess I best just let him be and not bother him by writing. (Shall I bind myself to that proclamation?)
But alack, the fallout of all this is that I'm faced with the compound problem of missing two of my favorite people and not having anyone to talk to about it. Once again, I'll have to go through the painful process of diversifying my friend portfolio.
But so far I've done nothing but play a lot of DDR and catch up on my summer sci-fi/fantasy reading. Which isn't really all bad, either. And, as I am currently falling asleep on my desk, I shall go play DDR now.
Friday. 7.10.09 10:50 pm
He's from somewhere near London; I am getting better at guessing. As we speak I become aware of my loud, crass, American voice. Some of the New England heaviness has invaded it over three years, and it grates against his voice like the squawk of a crow against the song of a nightingale.
He wants to know why I never come down to the bars. He doesn't want to offend me, but he says that he has never seen me as I look tonight. Very few people ever do: tonight I am disguised as a bird of paradise.
I reveal to him that I do not drink. He nods towards my drink on the table, a clear contradiction.
How can I explain why I am here?
Shall I say, "I am very busy playing my part in a little charade?"
Shall I point out to him each of the actors, each with his hidden motive shimmering just beneath his painted face, each knowing full well the hidden motives of the others?
Shall I explain why despite this knowledge that the actors continue playing their scene, feigning other emotions, projecting other motives?
Shall I tell him that it is quite equally for the benefit of the actors as the audience that they refuse to break their characters?
I shrug, loathe to add my harsh, guttual verbalizations to my response. I look at him narrowly. I could call upon my chameleon voice and in moments we could both be from somewhere near London, urbane and pithy. But I am tired of acting. Dejection is warping my mask at the edges.
I hear the intrusion of the DJ's voice in my ear, suddenly too close. "Don't be tired, pretty girl," he whispers, "Keep dancing, pretty girl."
I shudder involuntarily: I have missed one of my cues. My public needs me. The kind, patient, fun-loving outside part of me. Not the inside part of me, ugly and clever.
"I'll have to come down to the bars more often," I lie, smiling. My disguise is otherwise perfect, but my voice is the voice of a crow.
Don't Shake the Baby
Tuesday. 7.7.09 4:15 pm
Yes, a Penguin Taught Me French in Dear Antarctica
Tuesday. 6.23.09 9:33 pm
Today we learned a little bit more about our upcoming deployment to Antarctica. Here is the basic lay of the land:
We will be deploying out of McMurdo, where there are penguins:
and we will be camping in tents in the North and South forks of upper Wright Valley.
(For us there won't be any snow)
On the right side of the map you can see the great Mount Erebus, an active volcano with an active lava lake, one of only three active lava lakes in the world! Mount Erebus is completely covered in snow, so there is always the danger that a huge eruption could send giant mudslides and torrents of water down the sides of the mountain. This is called a "lahar". Another worry is the chance of pyroclastic flows. Pyroclastic flows are incandescent clouds of ash and rock fragments that rush down the sides of volcanoes at more than 300 mph. They were responsible for killing most of the people who were killed at Pompeii, and more recently, a pyroclastic flow completely wiped out a town in Columbia, killing more than 40,000 people in the matter of seconds.
Luckily, Erebus hasn't shown any signs of having an explosive eruption, and we are going to be too far away to be in danger.
The Antarctic Dry Valleys are pretty much the coldest and driest places on the Earth. In this way, they are a very good analog for the planet Mars, which is also extremely cold and dry. The temperatures of the Dry Valleys will likely be between -35 C and -3 C while we are there (they drop to low as -60 C in the wintertime), and the temperatures on Mars can be anywhere from -143 C at the poles to +5 C in Gusev Crater.
We'll be attempting to study how water (what little there is) moves through the always-nearly-frozen landscape of the Dry Valleys from the great ice sheet that surrounds the valleys to its final resting place in little saline ponds or cracked permafrost ground. We are also studying how the rocks in the Dry Valleys are chemically weathered. We have some evidence to suggest that the way that rocks weather in the Dry Valleys is very similar to how they weather on Mars. Thus we can get a little taste of ground truthing without making the epic journey to the surface of the Red Planet. This will likely involve a lot of flying about in helicopters:
Chillin' out in small yellow tents:
And generally checkin' out the sweet glaciers:
Working Too Much
Friday. 6.19.09 12:45 am
Nocturne in mE flat
Thursday. 6.18.09 8:37 pm
Nighttime. My office. The rain is coming down steadily outside my window. I am listening to Nocturne in D Flat, Op. 27, Chopin. I am in love with Nocturnes. I am in love with the night, I am in love with the rain. I am so filled with love that it is brimming right over, spilling all over my paper-laden desk and dripping down the sides. A Prelude follows the Nocturne. It is hesitant and hopeful: I am neither of these things. My feelings for the night are too passionate to sympathize with the Prelude. I am committed, I have already leapt into the darkness, sparing no thought for what will be there to catch me. My fall will be cradled by gauzy darkness. Another Nocturne, Op. 15 No. 2 in F sharp minor. This one transports me to a grand house, long, long ago. I am looking in on the parlor, the night is warm and still outside. I hear the music warbling softly to itself from another room. There is love here, too. Music from another room.
In other news, I have gotten involved with a couple of new things:
1. Ballroom dancing (again) [Tues]
2. Greek folk dancing [Wed]
3. Cake Decorating #2 [?]
4. Learning Chinese [Mon]
5. Going to gym in the mornings [every day?]
We'll see how that last one works out tomorrow, depending on how late I have to stay here before I finish my paper.
In other other news, my cat viciously attacked me again today. I've been a little afraid to go home. Thalweg isn't going to be back for another week, so it's just me and my water gun versus the Beast. And I accidentally dyed all of my socks bright pink. But I am going to Maine for the weekend to pick blueberries and eat lobster. I also found my perfect town and neighborhood and library, were I ever to live in Rhode Island permanently.
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