Friday, October 23, 2009

Meet BYU's Newest Librarian...

Over Fall Break (Def. for those of you who don't attend a state school: a week off from school for no particular reason) I spent a couple of days at BYU, my alma mater, composing a brief and doing other school work. One morning as I sat poring over cases Merry called me and asked if I wanted a dounut. I obviously said yes so she brought the dounut to me at the front door of the library. We chatted for a few minutes while I munched on the superbly delicious dounut.As I walked back into the library I heard someone say, "excuse me sir," but since they said sir I assumed they weren't talking to me. As I continued walking I heard again, this time in a voice loud enough to rouse all sirs, dead, living, young, or old (and probably some ma'ams as well), "EXCUSE ME SIR!!!" At this point there were at least a hundred people going in or out of the library and we all stopped, mainly to see who had a gun and where we should run.

Much to my shock the voice belonged to the BYU library hall monitor guy and he was pointing at me! I realized that he thought my half eaten doughnut was a gun!

I very slowly started to back up, not making any sudden movements lest he beat me with...okay I am not really sure if those guys have anything with which they could beat a person, but I wasn't taking any chances. I decided to take a slow bite to let him know that I had a pastry in my hand and not a dangerous weapon. "Sir," he said with a voice less likely to engage panic circuits in citizenry across three continents, "you can't have food in the library."

That was it!?! Fifteen years frightened off my life for that!? The crowd, obviously relieved that nuclear holocaust was apparently not imminent moved back to life while I shakily took the last bite of my dounut. At the time I was shocked at the trouble the poor kid took over two bites of pastry; however, I soon realized that he was really...

CONAN THE LIBRARIAN disguised as a puny BYU hall montior lest the students be frightened away.

From now on we're making sure not to return any books late because one never knows what might happen.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Restful Doorway Syndrome

A neuro-physiological condition affecting the ability of affected persons to walk through doorways without slowing down, or in extreme cases, stopping movement all together. The syndrome is most pronounced in situations involving an exit from crowded rooms although exits from warm rooms into the cold outdoors also bring out symptoms of the syndrome. Although Restful Doorway Syndrome can express itself in solitary infected persons, it is much more likely to express itself in groups.

This image exhibits some of the manifestations of Solitary Restful Doorway Syndrome

There is no known cure for restful doorway syndrome. Among attempted therapies is repeated applications of "excuse me." Studies universally indicate that this therapy is completely ineffective. Another attempted intervention is for those standing behind individuals suffering from Restful Doorway Syndrome to push against them from behind. Results from this therapy are mixed because it causes potentially unwanted side effects such as: resentment and frustration from sufferers.

The long term prognosis for individuals suffering from Restful Doorway Syndrome is not good. Over time sufferers lose the ability to walk through hallways, lobbies, and down sidewalks without stopping. Additionally, long-term sufferers increasingly walk and stop shoulder to shoulder in groups. Eventually Terminal Sufferers begin to engage in what is commonly referred to as the "cell-phone walk" where they compulsively manipulate their cell phone, Black Berry Device, or iPhone while simultaneously slowing their locomotion until they move slightly slower than frozen snail snot.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Right now I should be doing homework.

But instead, I am looking at past posts on my blog, and thinking about how much I LOVE having a blog!

The other day I attended a conference session that was talking about how blogging can be used by writing teachers. A blog allows students and the teacher to comment on different writing assignments, and gives the students another forum for writing. I think that if I ever teach another writing class, on my own, I might incorporate a class blog into it. I think it would be fun and rewarding.

Having a blog has been a really great experience. I've used it to get to know myself better, write about my frustrations and joys, publish my writing from Two Good Things, and tell jokes. And now I get to share it with Dave. It's just so fun!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A Perplexing Conundrum

As many of you know, Merry is gluten-intolerant. I knew this when we started dating and it didn't really bother me too much because there are some great gluten-free foods and even if there weren't I would give up gluten for Merry any day of the week. However, we have discovered since our marriage than I am allergic to xantham gum. Normal foods containing xantham gum have very small amounts and don't bother me; gluten free foods of necessity often contain quite a bit more (relatively) because the xantham gum takes the place of gluten and binds everything together.

The upshot of all of this is that Merry can't eat glutonous pizza and I can't eat gluten-free pizza; since we're still poor college students we certainly can't afford to make/buy one of each every time we want pizza so for now we are just doing without and mourning the loss of one of our favorite comfort foods.

Ah pizza, how we mourn your fall
and weep your early demise
To be cheesy was delicious
But put that on crust? divine.
Alas, the crust was the end
And in it we see only hunger's pall
And though we cross Rubicon and Rhine
Never again your name we will call.

Friday, October 9, 2009

School Year Goals

If you remember this post, you'll know that I decided to set some goals for this school year. Here they are:

Work Goals:
1. I will work hard! Next semester, I will possibly be looking for another job, because one of my current jobs conflicts with my class schedule. So I think that I will try to get individual tutoring jobs that I can schedule flexibly around my classes.

School Goals:
2. I will get all As. This is going to be hard. Graduate school has been harder than I thought it would be. But I'm glad that it's hard. I have wanted to go back to school, and I'm willing to put the effort into it. So, all As - that's three this semester and three next semester.
3. I will apply to BYU's MA TESOL program, and be accepted. In order to accomplish this, I'm going to need to do a couple sub-goals:
a. I will find a project that I can do for my masters (They give the option between a thesis and a project.), This will involve talking to a few people down at the ELC to see what needs to be done.
b. I will start writing my letter of intent now, so I can have it looked at and edited by a few people.

Personal Goals:
4. I will journal at least once a week. I blog now, but I can't really say a lot of things on this blog. And blogging on my blog makes me want to read all of the blogs I subscribe to, and that can be a real time-waster during the week.
5. I will run for 20 minutes, three times a week. That is only the commitment of 1 hour per week. I can do that. I need to do that.

Marriage Goals:
6. Dave and I teach the 13-year-olds at church. My goal is that we will prepare good lessons for them that are involving and meaningful.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

What the Heck is a Whoopie Cake?

Some of you may have been wondering as you read Merry's last post, "what the heck is a whoopie cake?" well, whoopie cakes, or more accurately, whoopie pies are an Amish pastry concoction consisting mainly of sugar, chocolate, and marshmallow cream. Why are they called whoopie pies you may ask? Well, legend has it that when the amish farm workers would open their lunches after a hard morning on the farm, they'd see the treat their wives put in and say, "whoopie!"

I don't really believe this account of the name's origins because it's far more likely that the amish guys opened their lunches, saw that treat, and said, "Hey, Brother Obadiah, I've got a tasty cookie/cake thing that I will trade with thee for half of thine vanilla pudding." I think they're called whoopie pies because they were first popularized by Whoopi Goldberg in her lesser known film: Ghost II, Pastries Past.

In Ghost II: Pastries Past Whoopi plays a chef's assistant who can put the chef in touch with his long lost love. There was also a rat who would stand on the Chef's head and controlled his cooking; needless to say, the chef was a pretty messed up guy. Anyway, they (Chef, Whoopi, and rat) invent whoopie pies as a way to bring back the chef's long lost love. It doesn't work but they discover that the little cakes are quite popular and start a highly successful franchise selling whoopie pies all over the country.

"I love these Whoopie Pies, they're worth way more than half a vanilla pudding" -Whoopi Goldberg

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Bad Date Stories

I recently read a blog that told about bad date stories. And I thought it was hilarious! So, let's open up and talk about bad dates!

I've got a couple of stories to share. First, my very worst date ever was a blind date. My co-worker set us up because she wanted another couple to come with her to a latin dance. She set me up with her Brazilian friend (she's Brazilian), and we went...and I don't know how to latin dance! Needless to say, I was an awful date because I couldn't dance. And he was an awful date because he spent most of the time dancing with my co-worker! I've had some other lame dates, but this one takes the cake.

Second, I also want to you about an almost-bad-date that I had with Dave. We'd been going out or spending time together a couple times a week for about three weeks. Dave lived in Salt Lake, and I didn't have a car, so he was making a big effort to come and spend time with me. And he had almost convinced himself that I wasn't interested in him. He had some friends telling him that I didn't seem interested, but he also had some friends encouraging him. So just couldn't make up his mind.

Well, this date almost made up his mind for him that I didn't like him! This is what happened. We went to watch a movie. I REALLY liked him. I was having so much fun with him. But I also didn't know how he felt, and I didn't know if he was going to keep coming down from SLC to see me, especially since he was starting another semester of law school and really busy. Let's just say that I was really confused, so I was kind of limiting my show of affection for him. Okay, I sat on my hands at the movie!!! I'm an idiot! But I wasn't trying to get rid of him, I just needed to be made a little more comfortable with the situation.

So, on the way home from the movie, Dave is sitting in the drivers seat, fuming! He is getting himself ready to drop me off and tell me that we probably won't go out again. There was a lot of silence in the car. I am oblivious to the tension there, though. I am sitting there, thinking away about how much I ADORE this man next to me. Dave chose that moment to ask, "What are you thinking about?" AWKWARD! I couldn't just casually say, "I was just thinking about how much I like you."

It took some quick thinking. There was a funny story about my biology class at BYU that I had alluded to but not told him, because it was embarassing. I decided that as my cover at that moment, I would break down and tell him this embarassing story. So I said, "I was just thinking that it was time I told you what happened in biology." And I proceeded with the story. Lucky for me, Dave took that as a sign of good faith, that I really was interested in him, and several hours later that night we both ended up telling each other that we liked each other. I didn't find out until a while later that I almost blew it that night!

Okay, now it's your turn! I'd like to hear some bad/embarassing date stories from all of you. And I'm contemplating giving a prize to whoever has the best story. I'm not sure what it will be yet, but Dave made some fabulous whoopie cakes tonight that I think would be worth the public embarassment!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

My hand felt naked yesterday!

I accidentally went to school without my ring on, and it felt very weird all day long. When Dave and I were dating and getting close to being engaged, I thought that it would take a long time to get used to wearing my ring, and I thought it would be uncomfortable with it on at first. But I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly it became a part of my hand. And I definitely missed it yesterday!

In other news, I love being married! I love all of the "firsts" that Dave and I get to experience. Today was our first frost as a married couple! It is getting nice and cool here this week, and it feels so comfortable to wear a coat. I don't think this cold spell is the start of winter yet. It'll get warm again, at least for a little while. But we're starting our first fall together. And it's lovely.