Who You Calling Psycho?!

I woke up this morning at my usual time, 06:00, and my body said to me, “Ha ha, Lissa. This is what it feels like to be 85 years old with a cracked back, uncooperative muscles, and swollen feet.”

“Oh, and by the way, all of your mosquito bites shall simultaneously begin to itch, and your index and middle fingers on your left hand shall be swollen and unbending.”

I so almost called Michael to tell him I wasn’t working today, but the thought of calling his house at 06:00 in the morning made me get up anyway.

I spent this week working at my friend’s house, doing more of that digging I mentioned before, and generally managing to get myself mildly injured, chewed on, muddy, wet, and smelly. My arms and ankles are covered in mosquito bites (which hung around in swarms in the warm, moist air in which we worked), including a beautifully disgusting bruise that is covered with three or four mosquito bites. I cannot make a fist with my left hand. My feet have simply decided to give up on me and not feel better at all after rest in order to punish me for standing on them eight hours a day for five days. And my back… ye gods, my back. I daresay even a four-hour massage could not get all the kinks out.

But I had so much fun, really. This is the last week I’ll be able to spend hanging out with my friends Michael and Nathan for, at the very least, a very long time. That makes me sad. And despite my tendency to get sick of a person after hanging out with them quite a bit, forty hours (not counting transit time) of hanging with Michael wasn’t bad at all. I probably laughed for about 10 to 15 of those hours, despite the killer work. Which, I shall be arrogant enough to say, made everyone’s day go a little better (my laughter is apparently quite infectious).

So I hurt, and because I essentially come home, shower rigorously, read, and go to bed, I haven’t had many particularly interesting thoughts, nor much interest in doing anything new or spiffy on this site. I’m convinced that once school starts, however, my creative streak and ambition shall return, as being in such an environment usually helps.

Last night, my friend Jenny threw a get-together (am I the only one who says “get-together”?) for our friends from high school that aren’t going to the school she and Michael are. We dragged everyone to The Peaceful Dragon for some good vegetarian food (although some went kicking and screaming, as though just because something doesn’t have meat, or even has faux meat, it’s supposed to be nasty), then we formed a caravan and travelled to Jenny’s house for last minute conversation about the good ol’ times (theoretically). There were two highlights of the evening. The first was driving down Interstate 77 (methinks), going about 70 miles per hour in pouring rain with the windows down (Michael’s car doesn’t accelerate well/at all with air conditioning on, and besides, it felt great), then pulling up beside my buddy Hannah, who is cool enough to own a bright green Civic hatchback, and yell/scream at her, “Who you calling PSYCHO?!” The look on her face was priceless, and well worth the strangely hurt ribs and the ensuing hacking cough and sore throat. A friend of Michael’s has a simliar habit of hanging out the window as the car he’s a passenger of is passing a strip club and yelling, “Perverts! You fucking sick perverts!” and variations on that theme to whoever may be standing outside, despite the fact that he isn’t a stranger to such places himself. I’m not that bad yet. Besides, I don’t have a good voice for that, as my yelling is more screaming, and is thus high-pitched. Quite, actually. The second highlight was the (re-)watching of the first episode of the first season of The Family Guy, a decidedly twisted cartoon (an acquaintance has the first season on DVD). The Kool Aid Guy rules, quite simply. Oh, YEAH!

[Listening to: The Cranberries – To the Faithful Departed – The Rebels]

No Title (Because I Couldn’t Think of One)

Dear, dear, sweet Hannah. I would thank you for kicking me in the ass about my lack of posting, except that I still have very little to post.

Last Monday and Tuesday, I worked with Michael again, doing (alas!) more digging. Those times, however, my ever-giggly (and slightly disgusting, in a very guy way) buddy Chris was there. I must say, there are few things more exhausting than trying to stop laughing/giggling while two of your friends are egging each other on. And that’s not counting the ever-present digging. Utterly exhausting. So Tuesday, I brought my MP3 player full of Linkin Park’s Meteora, which helped somewhat, although they supposedly talked about me all day. Hmph.

I spent Wednesday recovering from that physical trauma, discovering a wealth of bruises (in particular, a very nasty bruise on my knee from a shovel handle that gave me something close to a panic attack when I discovered it–with the corner of my bed) and getting the kinks worked out of my back (thank you, heating pad!).

Thursday night (at least, I think it was Thursday, and not Wednesday; ye gods, I need to go to school!) a bunch of mes amis and I got together and ate at The Peaceful Dragon, a vegetarian restaurant of an Oriental slant. You gotta love any place that has “Thai ‘Chicken’ Curry” (with actual quotes around “chicken” on the menu). A lot of the food was actually pretty good, and some (including the “Thai ‘Chicken’ Curry”) was superb. The company, which again consisted of the giggly Chris and his tormenter Michael, among others, was superb. This wonderful dinner was followed by the Sexy Pirate movie for the low price of four dollars. I shall state for the record that sitting in the back of theaters sucks. So many nuances are missed when you can’t count the pores on Johnny Depp’s face. I mean, come on, guys! However, majority rules in group situations. The movie was punctuated with one of my friends’ imitation of Barbosa’s orgasmic facial expressions as he watched Miss Swan eat. Simply hilarious.

I finally got a reply from my new roommate via e-mail. I don’t have a nickname for her yet, so for now she’s simply The Roommate. She’s already at Rose-Hulman, taking a math course that will get her through a lot of Calculus before school even officially starts–lucky girl. Unfortunately, I didn’t have $2 000, or I would have been saying au revoir to my buddies a couple of weeks ago. Not that I want to say good-bye to them yet, but that’s a great Calculus thing R-H has going, and I could have been taking those ever-so-cool Discrete and Combinatorial Algebra courses freshman year instead of three terms of Calculus. Not that I even know what Discrete and Combinatorial Algebra is, but that doesn’t matter. The Roommate seems very, very cool, and, just based on her writing, kinda like a mix of a couple of friends I already have (in terms of attitude). She’s moderately/fairly nerdy and doesn’t seem at all… wild, so I’m quite sure we’ll get along swimmingly. And she has a sense of humor! I hope I get to laugh plenty, despite (and because of) all the stress I know shall be placed on me. One cannot ask for more than the occasional giggle, right?

[Listening to: Charles Webster – Ultra Chilled, Vol. 2 Disc 1 – Ready]

The Latest

Not much new going on… My debate with Cleric turned to the irresolvable debate of choice vs. nature for sexuality (as I suspected it would eventually). I say nature (although you can choose your actions/lifestyle that are based on that nature), he says choice for it all (as in, he chose to be attracted to women and not to men, etc.). It’s an interesting twist, but I suspect the whole debate shall fizzle out for a while. Sorry, dude.

Friday I went to work with Michael; essentially, we dug for eight hours. Actually, there’s no “essentially” about it: we just dug for eight hours with a couple of breaks (and really good peanut butter and jelly sandwiches). It’s interesting how hard and how easy that sounds and is. It’s physically hard, but not mentally difficult or intellectually challenging. But I tend to underestimate how physically challenging work like that will be (and, apparently, the monetary worth of such work). You’re working, and digging, and you hate to even look at a clock (I carefully didn’t bring one), because you just know that, although you started at 07:00 and have been digging hours and have that tightness building up in your back and that throbbing going on in your feet, that it’s only 07:05. Unfortunately, it usually is. And yet, it wasn’t killer, like to the point that I thought I was going to injure something (like myself or Michael) or not being able to finish the day’s work (it didn’t help that Michael kept making me laugh, though, which is quite a tiring act in and of itself). It did leave me just sort of sitting fairly still all day Saturday, though. Well, I stretched a little (or tried to), but the sedentary life was the life for me yesterday. There wasn’t a muscle that didn’t hurt, which gave my parents quite the laugh as I trudged/limped around the apartment; even my thumbs hurt and didn’t want to move. And the mosquitos had three full meals and some snacks from one of my arms.

Michael and I decided to hang out that night, though, ‘cuz it was Friday and… well, ‘cuz it was Friday. Turns out we were really too tired to do anything other than play a game of Star Wars themed-Strate-go (through which I cheated like a bum, laughing giggling hysterically the whole time). For some odd reason, I simply could not convince him to go see the sexy pirate movie… Hmph.

Luckily for me, my mother was game last night. Michael was right: it’s high time I obsessed about something; how else can I live up to my full obsessive personality-type potential? Bru-ha-ha.

[Listening to: Linkin Park – Meteora – Nobody’s Listening]

I Feel Short

I’m just about sick of being examined. Yesterday was my first doctor’s visit in two years, and my first physical in about three years. Contrary to the sage advice of my friend Jenny, I did not have my pap smeared (ew, ew, ew). Rose-Hulman requires a battery of tests, however, including (and this surprised even my doctor), an exercise test, in which the doc measures your resting pulse, then you jog in place for a minute, then your pulse is measured again immediately after, then again two minutes later. But all in all, the exam went well. Apparently, there is nothing to be done about the icky sac of fluid on my knee; it’s been there five years now, and there’s apparently no damage to cartiledge or anything, so it just sits there, more disturbing than painful (unless pressed). Um, yeah. Ew.

What was disturbing about the exam was the height measurement. I had no real idea of how tall I am; I figured I was about 5 feet, 6 inches, maybe even 7 inches. It turns out that I’m 5 feet, 5.5 inches (1.66 m). Now, a half an inch doesn’t sound like much difference, but there’s a big psychological difference between 5 and a half feet and anything less. That makes you short. Damn.

I may be short, but that’s okay, ‘cuz short people kick ass too.

I visited the optometrist today for an eye exam, and to see if I needed new glasses. Turns out only one of my eyes has worsened in prescription, and that’s only a single level. So I used my visit to get a second pair of lenses in my old nifty Jeep frames to take to college as backup. I would seriously hate to get eleven hours away from home, melt my glasses to slag doing some funky chemistry experiment, and be without a pair for the length of time to mail a backup pair from home or find a doctor in Terre Haute that has accepts my insurance, etc., etc. I got out el-cheapo, even though I got all the scratch-resistant stuff and transition lenses on the second pair (shh, don’t tell Dad).

Oh, and Pirates of the Caribbean? Just as good and funny the second time, even if you’re sitting in the front row and the entirety of the screen just fits in the area of the magnified vision provided by your glasses when pushed high on your nose. It does prove frustrating when the glasses slide down, though, as they tend to.

Speaking of feeling short, I think I got the short end of a debate that’s been going on for the last little while with an old high school buddy that I shall call Cleric. If one were to sum up Cleric’s stance on political, social, or moral issues, one would be best suited to call them Conservative Christian. But he’s polite in an argument/debate, so I can deal with that. Nor does he preach or push, really, which is something I can’t even say I don’t do. Anyway, Cleric weighed in on the Reparations and neo-Nazis posts, as he has done on a few other issues, and a great, meandering low-key debate began. We both know that we won’t change each other’s opinions on anything, but he does often give me something to think about, so neither of us get particularly upset by what the other says anymore (at least, I try not to). Anyway, as sort of a joke (or, rather, in a very light-hearted manner), as well as to see if his response would fit the typical, conservative Christian viewpoint, I asked his opinon of the sodomy ruling. His response essentially criticized the idea of the privacy of the act excusing it–it sets a dangerous precedent for other things “consenting adults” may choose to do, like drugs or other potentially harmful activities. Actually, I shouldn’t say drugs, I suppose, because I fear a Liberatarian teacher of mine rubbed off on me somewhat (with regards to the whole marijuana idea)–if you choose to kill yourself in a manner that doesn’t harm others (unlike smoking in public, let’s say) in the privacy of your home, should the government interfere? Can they? Likewise, why the hell is suicide illegal? I don’t get that. If you’re at the point of committing suicide, are you thinking about the fact that when you die you will be committing a crime?

But the whole privacy precedent is potentially dangerous. So, geek that I am, I went and read some of the Court and Dissenting Opinons… or whatever they call it. Anyway, I made a rebuttal that mentioned that the emphasis seemed to be (acknowloging my utter lack of knowledge about laws and the fact that I read only part of the report) on the Equal Protection Clause and the Due Process Clauses of the Fourteenth and Fifth Amendments. And I think that the legal precedent set is important, although I think any other ruling would have been completely absurd. As I wrote in the e-mail: “[T]o condemn men who [want, either through choice or nature] to have sex with another man (and what would you have them do, never have sex in their entire lives?!) or people who wish to engage in oral sex (as that’s covered in [some of these “sex laws”] as well) is outside of the scope of the gov’t’s role.” The ruling going any other way is kind of a funny (in a horrific way) thought; what would the government do, start picking up any people who fit the homosexual stereotypes? It’s utterly absurd. But if the Court had to result to funky methods to achieve that ruling, something which is unnoticable to my legally-ignorant self or others… I don’t know. I would just hate to see this ruling overturned later on a technicality.

What I was orignally heading towards, though, was that Cleric also asked why homosexuals are pushing so hard for same sex marriages. He pointed out that in most states they can get unions and “they can even call it marriage”, but the legality of it, the wills, taxes, etc., aren’t handled the same. He also asked why “they want the rest of us to justify them”. And this is why I feel shorted. I replied with my own question and expounded upon it a little: “Why are they denied it?” I see it as no different than racism–you can stick your moral judgement on it, you can justify that with religion, but you are still condemning a group of people who are different than you to a “separate but equal” stance, which is, in fact, not equal, particularly morally. While it isn’t as bad as what blacks went through in this country, if we compare every instance of racism to the plight of blacks, then no other oppressed group would ever get any airtime for their problems. So I consider it a valid argument.

Not all of this was in the reply e-mail. Just the basic ideas and a couple of sub-points. His response? That my political arguments (regarding the Lawrence vs. Texas ruling, I presume) make some sense. I wanted an irresolvable argument in which he defended his viewpoints, dammit. Hell, he didn’t even say precisely what his opinions were!

Grr. I feel short. And shorted.