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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.

The Profile

Age. 37
Gender. Female
Ethnicity. that of my father and his father before him
Location Altadena, CA
School. Other
» More info.
The World

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
Croc Hunter/Combat Wombat
My hero(s)
Only My Favorite Baseball Player EVER

Aw, Larry Walker, how I loved thee.
The Schedule
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
Looking Backwards
Wild Swans
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 Geomorphology
Aeolian Dust and Dust Deposits
The City of Ember
The People of Sparks
Cube Route
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
New Moon
Breaking Dawn
Armageddon's Children
The Elves of Cintra
The Gypsy Morph
Animorphs #23: The Pretender
Animorphs #25: The Extreme
Animorphs #26: The Attack
Crucial Conversations
A Journey to the Center of the Earth
A Great and Terrible Beauty
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
Dandelion Wine
To Sir, With Love
London Calling
Watership Down
The Invisible
Alice in Wonderland
Through the Looking Glass
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
The Host
The Hunger Games
Catching Fire
Shadows and Strongholds
The Jungle Book
Beatrice and Virgil
The Help
Zion Andrews
The Unit
Quantum Brain
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
No One Ever Told Us We Were Defeated
Memento Nora
The Name of the Wind
The Terror
Tao Te Ching
What Paul Meant
Lao Tzu and Taoism
Libyan Sands
Sand and Sandstones
Lost Christianites: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew
The Science of God
Calculating 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 Martian
The Road to Serfdom
De La Terre � la Lune (ip)
In the Light of What We Know
Devil in the White City
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August
Red Mars
How to Be a Good Wife
A Mote in God's Eye
A Gentleman in Russia
The Fatal Conceit: The Errors of Socialism
Seneca: Letters from a Stoic
The Juanes Module

Juanes just needed his own mod. Who can disagree.
Day 16: Sandwiches
Saturday. 2.16.13 11:36 am
Today was Sandwich Ministry Saturday.

We saw a man with a sign that said, "I'm hungry"

Me: Would you like a juice box?
Homeless Man: Yes, thank you.
My Friend: Would you like a sandwich?
HM: I would like the drink but not the sandwich.
My Friend: Oh, you don't want the sandwich?
HM: I would like to eat the sandwich, but... I don't have any teeth. I can't chew things.
Us: Oh.
My Friend: What do you usually eat?
HM: Soup... drinks.... Thank you so much for the drink.

No wonder the poor man is hungry


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Day 15: Disasters
Friday. 2.15.13 5:03 pm
Over Christmas I let a random stranger from church store some stuff in my basement and in my storage space. She had to change apartments and she was going home for a month so she didn't want to pay Parisian rent during that time. Apparently over Christmas her grandma died, and then she's been having a real hard time getting her deposit back from her landlord, among other difficulties. She wrote a thank-you note to me on the church Facebook page. Now when I go to church all these people are like, "Oh, wait, I know your name... you're the angelic saint that I read about on the Facebook page".

I'm like, "uh... not really."

In other news, a giant meteor hit Russia. Which is awesome, unless you are two of my most contrarian friends, in which case you can't say that meteorites hitting Russia is awesome because some people got glass in their beards:

"I went to see what that flash in the sky was about," recalled resident Marat Lobkovsky. "And then the window glass shattered, bouncing back on me. My beard was cut open, but not deep. They patched me up. It's OK now."

I would respect their positions except for the fact that this is the first time they've given even the tiniest crap about anyone getting hurt anywhere.

It's not awesome because people got hurt, it's awesome in spite of the fact that people got hurt. Just like when the tsunami in Japan caused a giant maelstrom and you're like, "Oh my Lord I hope everyone is ok... and that maelstrom is AWESOME"

Or when you see an entire Norwegian hillside become liquified:

And you're like whaaaa? You can skip to about 8:25 if you don't feel like listening to the awesome British guy. Around 18 is also cool.

I told my French colleague that since they finished taking the masterpieces from the basement of the Louvre in case of a flood that I now wouldn't mind seeing the flood happen before I left. She said very seriously, "That's so selfish."
I was like, "Oh for Pete's sake, I'm joking." Geeeez.

Oh well, I'm a saint and the devil.

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To Mars, With Love
Thursday. 2.14.13 10:59 am
I am still working on my secret paper. It requires me to comb through hundreds of utterly gorgeous images of the surface of Mars while listening to crazy latin music. Many of the things that I am seeing on the surface of Mars are things that have never before been seen by any human eye. I feel the splendor of exploration, the sheer delight of discovery.

I wish I could research these kinds of mysteries forever, no longer in secret.



Mars and I will be together at last.

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Day 13: Winning the Future
Wednesday. 2.13.13 4:59 pm
Valentine's Day is coming!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I painted my nails red, pink, and purple. I invited some people to go to a cool museum of technology with me. It seems like a kind of "steam punk" museum, judging from the website and the metro stop. Afterwards we're going to come back to my place and drink champagne and eat Ben and Jerry's and rootbeer. Yeaaaaaah!

I was looking for funny Christian valentines because I was writing an email to my church friends, and I found this old fashioned humor video "How to Make the Most of Being Single and Christian". It was pretty funny, but while I was watching it my friend came in to ask a technical question about the model. I just left it running because whatever, he could see that I was watching a funny old how-to video, nbd. But after he was gone I realized that it said in really big letters, "HOW TO MAKE THE MOST OF BEING SINGLE AND CHRISTIAN". Shit.

Well, anyway, here are some of the Valentines I found:

I'm listening to the State of the Union Address right now. I have to admit that I had to yell, "THAT'S A LIE!" several times in my empty apartment.

Here are the three things I took away from it:

1. I'm really glad Joe Biden isn't the president.
2. John Boehner is kinda hot, no? No? Ok then. Just a little?
3. At least this year we're not "winning the future".

And now, a word from Stephen Colbert:

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Day 12: The Quick and the Dead
Tuesday. 2.12.13 1:08 pm
Today I went for a run again. I ran to a cemetery. Then a guy yelled at me because he thought I was going to jog through the cemetery. To be fair, I was considering jogging through the cemetery when he yelled at me. I really liked the tombstones with pictures of the people who died on them. I thought it was kind of cool to actually be able to see what the people looked like, and, if they were buried with their relatives, what traits ran through the family. There were even a couple that told you how the person died, which I would definitely put on my tombstone and in my obituary unless it was "syphilis" or something. Some people put cute little poems or sayings or something. A lot of people had ceramic flowers, which I thought was kind of against the point of putting flowers on graves.... I think cut flowers on graves are beautiful because they are ephemeral, just like human life.

I've been working all day on my secret paper on my favorite part of Mars. I gave myself until the end of February to finish it, but February is such a short month! Oy! On the plus side I am doing my favorite activity, which is staring at picture of Mars for hours at a time.

Off I go to pizza night at the church!

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Day 11: Mental Gymnastics
Monday. 2.11.13 3:01 pm
And physical gymnastics. I joined a gymnastics class. I know, you're thinking, "Zanzamaphone, didn't you just join a fashion photography club, a philosophy club, a french/german language club, an urban adventurer's club, and a 'doing silly things in Paris' club? Didn't you further decide to start running and to take up parkour again? Didn't you further recommit to going to church on Sundays and Tuesday nights, and didn't you even further commit to hanging out with your friends more AND actually doing the work you were supposed to have been doing all of this time? Didn't you decide to visit every fountain in Paris and to go to every free museum? Didn't you tell that Russian guy that you'd like to go skiing on Mont Blanc? Didn't you agree to be an author on a special volcanology issue, to review a paper for a journal, to collaborate on several random projects, and to finish the secret paper about your favorite place on Mars that you've been writing by the end of February? Aren't you supposed to be working on at least one of the two novels that you are writing? Didn't you just take up calligraphy?"

Yes, yes, yes. Yes. But they totally taught us how to do HANDSPRINGS. I stopped taking gymnastics like the WEEK we were learning how to do handsprings, like twenty years ago, and now I'm totally going to learn! And gymnastics goes so well with parkour, don't you see?!?!? Plus the class is free! I met a cool Mexican girl!

So now the real gymnastics will be the scheduling gymnastics that I will have to achieve in order to do all of these things at the same time. >_>

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Day 10: Americans
Sunday. 2.10.13 4:20 pm
I went for a run today. Almost three miles (!). I stopped for a little while to watch the pigeons at Saint Sulpice. It was snowing.

After cleaning my entire apartment, I went to church. After church I hooked up with my church buddies at coffee hour. I ran into my bud J and she invited me to go to an avant-garde dance performance next Saturday. Awesome!

I ran into SL, too, and he gave me a great big random American hug. Exactly what I needed. Apparently he might move to Washington DC later this year. Quelle coincidence ! Moi aussi ! He wants to join the Foreign Service, as if that wasn't the coolest thing that anyone has ever wanted to do this side of NASA. A bunch of us went to a Chinese restaurant in honor of Chinese New Year. SL was ahead of me in line, and his total came to around 14 euros. "Wow, expensive Chinese food," he said. "Which one was so expensive?" I asked. "The beef and onions," he said. He looked at the receipt again.

"Um... yolo?"

<3 Americans <3

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Day 9: Happiness Therapy
Saturday. 2.9.13 5:26 pm
I saw Happiness Therapy. For those of you not in the know, this is Silver Linings Playbook. In France they like to rename American movies... they don't give them French names, no, they just give them different English names. Like Step Up Revolution, which became "Sexy Dance 4". Sure, French people, just keep doing your thing.

Before I saw it I couldn't fathom how a movie with Bradley Cooper and the Hunger Games girl could be nominated for so many Oscars, but I really enjoyed it. And it made me really homesick.... which might be the first time I've been actually homesick. Ever. The lights came up in the theater and I looked around and I was surrounded by French people... French people that had just been watching a movie in English about America, French people laughing at our fat people and our American football rituals.... French people who you have to funnel out a different door at the end of a movie because otherwise they'll sneak into another movie because French people are dishonest. I just wanted to be back home and surrounded by my countrymen, dig?

I took a walk through Paris to clear my mind. The Seine's roiling waters mount ever higher. I went to my writing club today and for the second time in three months, nobody else came. As I crossed the Seine onto the Île de la Cité, I noticed a giant, beautifully ornamented clock decorating the random, otherwise blank wall of a building.

Paris always comes out of nowhere and does things like that.

All right, Paris, I won't leave you yet.

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