Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Very Worst Day

Imagine, if you will, you're a foreign national living in London. One morning, you walk to the subway station, en route to, I dunno, a shitty job at Roots n' Fruits. You pick up your free copy of The Metro, you walk through the ticket barriers and make your way down the elevators toward the subterranean platform. Halfway there you hear your train pulling in. This is London, so God knows when the next one will be there. So you run.

Is this where your worst ever choice was made? Or was it when you decided to take the subway the morning after a bomb attack? Or was it the non-choice of your skin color? Hard to say, but for at least one guy this very banal beginning turned into his very worst day.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Absolutely. Swamped.

Man ... all you who knew me prior to the PhD process, those who supported my decision to pursue it, really, why didn't you smack me instead?

Sunday, August 07, 2005


K. & I celebrated our first-year anniversary on Thurs. & Frid. by driving through Eastern Kentucky in a largely unsuccessful bid to find a walkable trail through Daniel Boone National Forest. Instead, we ended up in the mining town of Harlan, where K. very nearly decided to end our marriage because I kept singing 'Harlan Man' by Steve Earle. Needless to say, little hiking was done here. Not soon thereafter, in search of a small lake nearby that looked on the map to have a trail, we found ourselves in Ben Hur, Virginia being trailed very closely by (as they say in these parts) 'the law'.

Upon realizing that neither of us were made for the hills, we made our way, completely on a whim, to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, where we sat in the walkway just outside the door of our room getting so drunk that the Cajun-style Pringles we bought earlier in the day tasted good, and listened to a woman in a too-loose tank-top who, when she was not screaming into her cell phone, was glaring & accusing me of trying to check out her rack, when in fact I was merely checking out her black eye. I suppose K. would've have left me then, too, if she hadn't been checking out the woman's rack. (Or, more likely, simply not paying attention to anything but the burning realization that she'd married an idiot.)

Happy Anniversary, K.!!

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Oh Dear

I will never live down some things.

UPDATE: Whoo-Hoo. With pictures, now. Man, I was thin back then.

Water. Must. Drink. Water.

(Via Unfogged) I'm curious about what you all have to say about yesterday's OpEd in the New York Times about the merits of tap water over bottled water.

Me, I'm definitely not a bottled-water snob. For years, I was a Brita filter man -- but that was only because it was one of my roommate's. Before that, when I was living with my parents, I got all my water from the electronic doo-dad on the fridge. And when I was in college, I pretty much stuck to the water fountain in the dorm. My reasons for switching to bottled water were (a) one day in Glasgow a van rolled through my street with someone announcing over a P.A. 'Don't drink the water! Don't drink the water'. Turns out, heavy rains mixed with sheep shit and ended up contaminating the water supply. We were told over the news to boil all bathwater, and not to open our mouth during showers. That was enough reason there to prefer the blind ignorance of bottled water. Then, though, (b) there was the convenience of bottled water. By and large, you walk a lot more in Europe in America, and sometimes a brotha gets thirsty while on the go. Which leads to (c), bottled water was freakin' cheap over there. A nice big bottle of Voldic, for example, set me back less than a pound; and when I was in Belgium, Spa would run less than a Euro.

Of course, here in America, things are a bit different. Contaminated tap water is much more rare, unless you live out in the country; I'm in my car more than I am on my feet; and a two-liter bottle of Coke is somehow cheaper than a one-liter bottle of Spa or Voldic (sometimes at a 3:1 ratio).

I used to think my wife was full of crap when she insisted there was a difference in taste between bottled (spring) water & what came out of the tap -- and yes, we've tried blind taste tests, and she can tell bottled water from tap water, though perhaps not the difference in brands -- but, I do kind of agree that a glass of room temperature tap water is just not as immediately refreshing as a bottle of room temperature bottled water (particularly Spa ... Evian is a bit too metalic). Much of this might be aesthetic, maybe even nostalgic. I don't know. Or maybe it's the fact that I can chug a bottle of water quicker than I can from a glass. I doubt its more nutricious, but if anyone's seen the contents of my diet they know that's the least of my concerns.