Sunday, February 27, 2005

No Title

Sis has a carnation in a coffee mug on her dresser. It's a cup of flower.

Thought Exercises

My mind moves in weird patterns. Apparently it runs in the familiy. I asked Sis what we should do if the entire country dissolved into chaos and anarchy ruled. Her response: "Take leadership positions, negotiate conflicts and stock up on concealed weaponry."

"I thought you were going to say 'canned goods'," I said.

She looked at me with her eyebrows raised and replied, "You can go for days without food. You can only go about five seconds after getting stabbed. Hey, you should so blog that."

Thursday, February 24, 2005

More MagGraph Madness

My MagGraph prof is sick again. She wasn't here on Tuesday, but she's here today and she's talking like one of those stopped-up kids on Reading Rainbow. You know the kind: "Doh ged oud dere ad read dis boocg!" I can't really pick on her for this, but she could have at least taken some Dayquil or Sudafed or something. She's giving us a lecture, for Pete's sake, and it's hard to concentrate on what she's actually saying. Fortunately, she's lecturing about advertising formats, which I find absolutely fascinating. I'd have been an ad major if writing wasn't my calling. I may end up minoring in it.

In the Powerpoint presentation, she just used "layout" as a verb. This is one of my biggest pet peeves. "Layout" is a noun. "Lay out" is a verb. You lay out a layout. Grrrr.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Comments, and why Blogger is a Johnny-Come-Lately

Blogger finally woke up and fixed it so that you don't have to be a Blogger member to comment on Blogger members' blogs. So Mom, Frogpop, Grandpa, whoever, you can all comment on my blog. Rejoice, rejoice, caloo calay and all that joyous nonsense. Let there be dancing in the streets, drinking in the saloons and blogging on the laptops. Huzzah!

Good fences make for bicycles in odd places

Not far from my dorm, there's a chain link fence. It's about eight feet high, and the top is just bits of twisted wire sticking up.

Sunday, I saw a bike on it, a full-size, red bicycle hung by the frame upside-down on the wires. Monday morning they'd taken it down, which was a bummer because I'd wanted to get a picture, but at least it lives on in my memories. Besides, it won't be long until something else equally weird shows up someplace else. This is why I love college.

Of course, I couldn't help thinking of some poor kid coming out to get his bike and being at a loss as to where it went.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

The Dorm Chronicles, part IV

The following conversation has been edited slightly for clarity and because my memory isn't perfect.

Sis and I were discussing our potential entries for the Bulwer-Lytton contest and its unofficial counterpart, the Little Lytton.

"I think I'm going to change this one, make it bad writing," I said, looking at my latest effort. "You know, change 'Maria said' to 'Maria grimaced,' 'cause you can't grimace something."

"Ohmigosh, you're right," said Sis, startled slightly by the revelation.

"Yeah, it's like '"Let's go," Lucy giggled.' You can't 'giggle' something, you have to say it."

"But . . . yeah you can."

"Oh, well, I suppose you're right, 'cause it makes noise. But you can't smile something, you can't scowl something . . . "

"What? Sure you can! I've seen that lots of places," Sis said indignantly.

"No, no--"

"You're just anal!"

I protested, "Hey, I didn't make it up, it's in all my journalism stuff."

"Hey, Webster's dead, man," Sis replied in a edgy, rebellious tone, drawing her hands apart in a negating gesture. "No rules."

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

No title

Doesn't the act of designating a work "Untitled" give it a title?

And why does it always say "This page intentionally left blank," when it obviously isn't?

Monday, February 07, 2005

No title

In my math class, my prof asked "Does the word 'symmetry' mean anything to anyone?"

I thought, "Sure! That's where you bury dead people!"

Friday, February 04, 2005

Thursday, February 03, 2005

More MagGraph Madness

My prof just dismissed us with the phrase "Peace out." Uhhhhh. *shudder*

Good Grief

Updated at 6:48 PM on 02/04/05

I'm blogging this from my magazine graphics class. I know I shouldn't be doing this; I should be taking notes. But the lecture is a Powerpoint presentation and I soak those up like a white carpet soaks up grape juice, and I really just don't think I want to wait on this.

We're learning about typefaces right now. My prof (a young, east-coast-type woman in her late twenties/early thirties) put up an example of type effects to make a point. The slide showed two images, side by side, with text beneath. The photos were identical--a scene from Vietnam of US soldiers carrying a wounded fellow soldier--and the text beneath said "VIETNAM: 30 years later." On the left, the text was in a newspaper-type font, and on the right the text was in a font reminiscent of Asian calligraphy. The effects of the two fonts were very different, but not in a bad way. The left-hand font gave an air of seriousness and formality, and the effect (that I got, anyway) from the text on the right seemed to give the indication of personal stories and experiences.

My prof said it was racist.

I raised my hand and said "I really don't see the racism."

"Yes," she replied, "but this looks very Asian--"

"But the war was in Asia," I replied. "I mean, my grandpa was in Vietnam, and I really don't see him having a problem with this."

"Not for him, no," she said. "But for the Vietnamese . . . this is racist."

Ugh.

I am so sick of seeing the word "racism" misused. Racism means that you're saying that one race is intrinsically better than the other. Using ethnic type fonts without making a judgement on that ethnicity is not racist, it's just atmospheric. If the same type of display had been done about WWII, and the text had been in German blackletter, would that have been racist? We fought with the South Vietnamese, too. They have stories as well.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

A brunnette, a redhead and an AP reporter walk into a bar . . .

Yeah, the AP had a blonde moment, all right. No offence meant to natural blondes, of course--I mean the dyed blondes who pretend they're dumb so guys won't feel threatened by them. *ahem* Anyway, the AP reported yesterday morning that an Islamic group had taken an American GI hostage and was threatening to behead him.

By four o'clock eastern, it had been determined that the GI's name was . . .

. . . wait for it . . .

Joe.

I'm having a hard time deciding which is more pathetic: that the terrorist groups are getting that desperate, or that the reporters didn't realize that the photo wasn't real. I e-mailed the above link to my dad and he recognized it for what it was right off the bat. To quote his reply, "I am also laughing about the way news bit on this story because any person with half a brain could see that that GI wasn't real, especially any guy about my age that had even a small memory of their childhood. I'm with [LGF comment] "19", I just hope they don't resort to torture with firecrackers, the slow death process of using a pellet gun. Worse yet, the could use FIRE obtained from a trash pit. 'Oh, the humanity.'"

Heh. Indeed.*

*Yes, I am a shameless copycat.