Monday, May 29, 2006

Guess what!!!

Guess what! It RAINED this morning!

Guess what! My bedroom window STILL leaks!

Guess what! I'm NOT pleased!

Sigh. . . . .

Sunday, May 28, 2006

How 'bout dem Rice Owls?

So, funny story! I got up this morning for church, and went to my closet to get a shirt, and thought, hmmmm, today is Pentecost, right? So I should wear red. Okay. So I get to choir practice, and it turns out I missed a week somewhere. Today is Ascension Sunday, not Pentecost. Oh well. I'll have to dredge up another red shirt for next week.

Anyway, after mass today we had our annual choir lunch at Ninfa's, so it was around 1:30 PM when I got back to my apartment. The Conference USA championship tournament has been going on since Wednesday, and my Rice Owls were slated to play our cross-town rivals, the University of Houston Cougars, in the championship game starting at 1 PM. Now, even though I have a degree from both institutions, there's absolutely no question who I root for. The coogs have a very respectable baseball program, and were second in the conference standings coming into the tournament, but when it comes to choosing between the boys in blue and the boys in red . . . I pick my Rice Owls every time.

By the way, my boys in blue? Yeah, consensus number 1 pick in the three national polls, an RPI of 2, and number 1 in CUSA conference standings, just so you know. In their first season in the conference they've set a new record for winning percentage, and all this in a conference that's stronger in baseball than the one we left. The boys have been on fire!

So I get to my apartment, and decide I'm not really in the mood to face a crowd, so I'll just stay home and watch the game on line. I fire up the computer feed, and, OH NO! My Owls are losing 2-0 going into the 2nd inning. I look down and realize, uh oh, I'm rooting for the wrong team with this red shirt of mine. But I'm not a terribly superstitious fan, so I laugh it off. We got one back in the bottom of the 2nd, but then give up 3 more in the top of the 4th. At that point, I said, out loud and to myself, "Fine, already, I'll go change shirts."

I grab a blue shirt out of the closet and put that on, and settle back down on the couch. Somewhat grumpily and anxiously, I might add. Then! In the bottom of the 4th inning! Rice scores 3! Bottom of the 6th, Savery gets a 2 out 2 run homer, then in the bottom of the 7th we get 2 more runs! U of H didn't score for the rest of the game, and with a final run in the bottom of the 8th my Owls won it 11-5!!! I take full credit of course. :-P

So next weekend we'll host a regional tournament here at Reckling Park. After that comes super-regionals, then . . . drum roll please . . . Omaha. Let's go Rice!!!

Friday, May 26, 2006

Categorically speaking . . .

So I was totally going to stay up uber-late figuring out how to tag my Scribbledom posts so that they could be sorted into categories, like "Creative Writing" or "Autobiograpical" or "Self Referential." Only, when all is said and done, that looks like a lot of work, and I don't really understand the hacks that might help. So instead I uploaded a buttload of pictures into an album on Facebook, and captioned them. But I still stayed up uber-late. Which is probably why I felt I should share.

Okay, I'll go to bed now.

By the way, this would have gone into the Self Referential category, should it have come into being.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

And the Winner Is . . . . . . . . .

I think I promised a couple of people an update on my employment status via my blog. I got that all finalized today, so here ya go!

First, the back story for anyone who missed it. I have an engineering degree, yes. And now I have a Masters in English, yes. The intuitive marketable combination (at least while I'm brainstorming the great American novel) is technical writing, so I've interviewed with two firms looking to hire tech writers.

One firm, PROS Revenue Management, develops software to forecast and manage pricing on such things as air plane seats and hotel rooms. In working for them I would be writing about the software. The other firm, IDI, is much smaller, but is entirely composed of tech writers, which are then contracted out to companies in need of documentation. This could run the gamut from software to hardware to process in any field from electronics to oil. I consider this a better fit for my interests and background, since I'm much better with hardware concepts than software. Not that I'd consider myself anything less than stellar at writing about either. :-P

PROS made me a very reasonable offer for an entry level tech writer. IDI topped it. By more than 30%. So I'll be working for IDI, and my first day will be a day trip to New Orleans for the kick off meeting of the project they want to put me on.

I'm on a two month trial at an hourly rate, with no benefits, but I can handle that, because it's what I've been doing for over a year contracting for Augmentix. After that, I'll be making more money than I'd dreamed I'd ever make after quitting the engineering biz. In a nutshell, I am incredibly blessed. They expect a lot from me, but I know I can meet and exceed, because that's just what I do.

I'm excited, but I'm also a little scared. But I know I'm not alone. Not only do I have my friends and family behind me 100%, I am definitely being led, carried, supported, and prodded as needed by the Master. I hope to prove to Him most of all that I can turn to profit the good that He has entrusted to me.

Thanks to everyone for the well wishing and the encouragement and the reminders that everything would work out. You know how I spaz about stuff. I start next week, so keep your fingers crossed for me!

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Daddy's Guitar

"Daddy, can I play?"

"Okay, Babydoll, you pick and I'll finger the notes here. Start with this string."
Twinkle, twinkle. . .
"Now this string."
. . . little star, how I wonder. . .
"Now back to the first string."
. . . what you are. . .
"Now. . . right, that it! you're right."
. . . Up above the world so . . .
"No, now down."
. . . high . . .
"Now back, yeah."
. . . like a diamond in the . . .
. . . sky. . .
Twinkle, little star, how I wonder. . .what you are.
* * *

"You recognize this one, don't you? This is Pat's favorite song. Here, I'll play, you sing it for her."

And I'd sing.

Edelweiss, Edelweiss
Every morning you greet me
Small and white, clean and bright
You look happy to meet me

Blossom of snow may you bloom and grow
Bloom and grow forever
Edelweiss, Edelweiss
Bless my homeland forever
* * *

"Who tuned this guitar?"

"I did, Daddy."

"Well, you didn't do too bad. But the two highest strings you have to tune using this fret. You use this one for the others, but not the two highest."

"Oh. Oops! I thought it sounded weird."

* * *

Sometimes when Daddy was away from home, I'd sit around picking one string after another. Listen to the notes resonate into a chord that sounded like wide, empty spaces under the sky. Like mountains and deserts and the sun setting golden in the west. And like my dad.

E . . . A . . . D . . . G . . . B . . . E
E . . . . A . . . . D . . . . G . . . . B . . . . E
E . . . . . . A . . . . . . D . . . . . . G . . . . . . B . . . . . . . . . . . E
* * *

When Daddy died, Mom asked me if there was anything I wanted.

"Daddy's guitar."

Sunday, May 14, 2006

The Writing on the Wall

You can probably tell a lot about a person based on what's hanging on their walls. Or what isn't, I suppose. I'm sitting here wondering what my walls say about me . . .

I thought I'd inventory my walls in no particular order, but of course I'm too obsessive compulsive for that! So, starting in the living room, from 12 o'clock around clockwise:
  • A poster with a trumpet and some tulips laying on a piano keyboard.
  • Three small oil paintings, two of landscapes by my uncle and one of a village girl by a friend.
  • My sheepskin from Rice University. The things are HUGE.
  • A white board, where I keep my to do and shopping lists. Did I mention I was a little OC?
  • A Big Sur landscape in acrylics, in progress. Been working on that for over 5 years.
  • A water color of an oil derrick in an East Texas forest.
  • A crucifix above the door.
Now in the bedroom, starting at north and going clockwise:
  • A map of Tolkein's Middle Earth.
  • Another crucifix above the door.
  • A canvas embroidered with a floral still life done by my grandmother.
  • A piece of Chinese paper cutting art. I think they're orchids.
  • Another flowers on canvas in embroidery floss by Grandma.
  • A mirror.
Things I haven't put up yet, in spite of the fact that I've lived here for more than a year:
  • A promo poster for a George Strait concert I went to back in high school.
  • A Blues Brothers 2000 poster.
  • A pencil drawing of a Nereid in the ocean that I did a while back.
  • 5 band awards and one picture of me in uniform.
So, what does all that say about me? Well, to state the obvious, I'm a musician, in fact, a band nerd, and to be specific, a trumpet player. Elementary. I come from an artistically talented family, and doodle around myself a bit. I'm a Rice grad, meaning my education was incredibly expensive, but pretty high quality, just like the diploma they gave me and it's frame job. I suppose that means I'm smart or something. :-P I try to at least maintain the semblance of organization in my life. I'm a Tolkein fan, but only at nerd level, not geek level, I swear! I'm not big into photographs. I have a few, but they don't hang on my walls, and there are only three of them. (They're of 1) my kid sister, 2) me, my confirmation sponsor, and Bishop Yanta at my confirmation, and 3) me at age 6 in the blue bonnets out at my grandparents' farm. Those only add to the others to reinforce that I'm Catholic and Texan)

It strikes me that above all, what you can learn about me from looking at the stuff on my walls is that I am EXTREMELY proud of my family. Every work of art, every piece of furniture I have that was created by or belonged to them is out and on display. I have carvings my grandfather did. Most of my furniture is from my great-great-aunt's estate, and the china cabinet was my great-grandmother's.

This seems to be a fitting reflection for a day like today. Family pride. I took one of those personality tests once where you're given a list of five animals and you rank them in order of your preference, and then you're given what they stand for, and the ranking you chose indicates their importance in your life. I think they're Tiger, Horse, Sheep, Rat, Pig (and that's the order I rank them in). They signify, respectively, Pride, Family, Love, Career, and Money. Pride and Family. Apparently my walls could have told you that.

I would not be the person I am today without my family, and I happen to like who I am, so I figure I owe some people big for that. Today is the day I pay back with my gratitude a *tiny* portion of that debt. I can't ever pay it back in full, but the beauty is, that's not an obligation. It's a joy. Today is Mother's Day, so . . .

I love you, Mom!
I love you, Momo!
I love you, Grandma!

Love also to Great-Grandma E. and Great-Grandma J. in heaven. It was a blessing to know and be loved by both of you. And Great-Grandma J. and Great-Grandma B., I wish I could have known you.

Thank you to all you wonderful women who *gave* me the person I am.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

D is for . . .






I turned in my last assignment today, and now I'll have a chance to clean up this DUMP of an apartment I've been living in. It feels so good to be finished, let me tell you!

Not only am *I* done, but they're actually finally DOING something today about my bedroom window leak! I've been hearing all sorts of construction noises upstairs, and when I got home today there was a guy painting around my window. Kind of DISCONCERTING, that was! But all's well that end's blah blah blah.

I think I'm going to take the evening off and just chill out. Wow. How sweet it is! Tomorrow I'll get to cleaning up. It will be really nice also to live in a tidy DOMICILE once again. Okay, I'm reaching now. Hope everyone's having a great week! Thanks so much to everyone for their support. Couldn't have done it without my friends and family. You are all DA bomb. :-P

Thursday, May 04, 2006

A is for . . .

Announcements. Of the graduation variety. Those need to go out soon. I've finished both seminar papers, and now there's just the translation project to work on.

The past few days have been really rough. I don't know why dealing with Daddy's death this year was so much harder than last year. Everyone's been so sympathetic and supportive, and I really appreciate it. I've taken down the last three posts since they did their job in helping me get through. I really kinda like my anonymity here, and I prefer not to use actual names, so you'll have to get your Tennyson somewhere else. ;-)

A is also for ALMOST THERE. One more assignment. And a job interview or two. And I'm almost there. . . .