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wednesday, 30 june

overheard: 'i'll have glittery poo tomorrow.' -pete

yesterday was another on foot day. went to allison's house. allison wasn't there, of course. she gets back on friday. but i spent a long time with marie, enjoying spokane news and sunning ourselves by the pool. it was a bit too hot for my tastes, but oh well. jack is flying to nepal today: bon voyage! and one last thing before i go get my blood drawn: i had a physical yesterday and according to my EKG my resting heart rate is 49 bpm. which impressed me. who knew i was in shape. or i could just be dead.

tuesday, 29 june

overheard: 'he looks like a big monkey. in a good way.' -mike

the best news from yesterday, aside from my first burrito in over 4 months, was the slap-down the supreme court gave the bush administration over the indefinite detention of "enemy combatants". in one of the decisions, antonin scalia penned the following: 'The very core of liberty secured by our Anglo-Saxon system of separated powers has been freedom from indefinite imprisonment at the will of the Executive.' Now, I'm not entirely sure he has his history right (cf england's lord chancellor), but i most heartily agree with him. and you should write that down. because i'm not sure it's ever happened before. and it's not likely to happen again any time soon.

just one other thing for today, before i shower and all that jazz: i thought that this op piece from sunday's washington post was brilliant, and i hope every catholic (and particularly every catholic interested in politics) will read it. but all the rest of you are welcome to read it, too.

monday, 28 june

overheard: 'he's cute, but small' -katie

the best thing about yesterday was that i got to speak for quite a while on the phone with three of my favorite people ever: julie, katie, and jack. the worst thing: it was on the phone, and many of you probably know how much i despise that contraption. had a good workout, though. the spokane club has the most amazing new barbell thingy (that's the best i can do on describing it, i'm afraid).

in other news, some of the pictures from the beach turned out real good. i'll try to get them posted in a refreshed photo section soon. by which i mean after i make my social rounds and clean my room, etc etc. only other interesting thing to say about yesterday is that i went to see the new michael moore movie. i always find his positions interesting, and his arguementation totally incoherent. definitely worth seeing, of course, but i though bowling was better.

sunday, 27 june

overheard: 'golf is really a very protestant game if you play by the rules' -uncle steve

yeah yeah yeah. i didn't update for a week. mea culpa. happens the last full week of june every year, though. so you shouldn't be surprised. i'm nothing if not predictable. i'm back in the states now. spent 3 days at the beach relaxing, and now i'm back in spokane. it was a bit sad saying goodbye to england. i have to admit, though, that it's GREAT to be home.

anyway, in a slightly unpredictable move, i decided not to go to seattle pride this weekend. mostly because i'm still a bit jet lagged. you know. but also for a few other reasons. blah. in any case, i went to the anti-pride today: hoopfest. yes, i love supporting my little sister's basketmaball. and yes, i love all the hot guys without their shirts on. but could it get any straighter? i could practicaly cut the homophobia (and, of course, the homoerotic tension) with a knife. until next year, then. i guess.

monday, 21 june

overheard: 'i would rather poop every day and have sex three times per week than the reverse' -jack

well, everyohthing that i'm not taking back to the states with me has now vacated my room. i had thought about going to the gym one last time, but i find myself in a grips of a profound laziness. i may, instead, focus on getting myself ready to go, running a few last errands, and generally making a pest of myself about town. there are letters to be written, gifts to purchase, books to return, and teeth to brush, not to mention the daily burden of reading the news. you'll be pleased to know that marianna is going to a) go crazy from taking her malaria pills and b) take over a country with large stocks of gold. and throw a concert there. with go go boys. she promised.

saturday, 19 june

overheard: 'we just found ourselves in the middle of a loser flotilla' -mike, whilst punting

so mostly just packing today. not much to say about that. need to write a letter for safer together. need to eat something. break.

friday, 18 june

overheard: 'you've never put on leather for me' -brian

so brian headed back to DC today, the first trinity term casualty. we will all follow in short succession. it was an interesting evening. i can only say that the porters at pembroke are ridiculously rude. so we moved to drinks to corpus. which is one more off my list. the corpus gardens are lovely. but mike and brian are sinners. after corpus, i had some very yummy drinks at love bar. or baby love. or bar baby. or whatever. the one near college. with dave and matt and meredith and jack and mike. and that was wonderful. but then i got a stomach ache, which was less wonderful. slept like a log, though, and now i'm going to spend the afternoon at the bod.

item number B: the bush administration's ideological bent is bad for us, and it leads to really weird decisions from the fda and the epa.

thursday, 17 june

overheard: 'that was quick' -some girl on the stairs at greg's party

so i wasn't slacking yesterday. i just had to leave for london wicked early. which still didn't work out. i got stuck in rush hour traffic and it took more than three hours for me to get from my room to the guildhall library. painful. once there, i had a very productive day. and then i had lunch at busuba with brian and anu. so the day was lovely.

i would like everyone to keep my gramma in your prayers, as they found a 'spot' on her adrenal gland. it's probably just a cyst, but prayers can never hurt. congrats to paul on finishing his exams today, and safe travels to anna, whom i wish i'd hung out more with, as i think she's one of my favourite people ever. and she can do shots on a wednesday night, which you've gotta respect.

i think it goes without saying that cheney is a manipulative f*ckhead, but there's further evidence. if you needed it. other link: another brilliant moment from wonkette, albeit from monday. but, really, we all know how much i love the note.

tuesday, 15 june

overheard: 'you wonder how the british took them over' -jack, re: the ancient maori defensive art of poi

well, i can't say my viva was a resounding success, but i remain hopeful that i won't be kicked out of my program. the string of amazing days at oxford seems almost endless, which is hardly good news for my flagging work ethic. after my viva yesterday, jack bought me sushi lunch. then, after a teeny bit of work, i went to miranda's country house in banbury for a LOVELY afternoon of swimming, crocquet, and barbecue. that's 3 barbecues in 3 days. i love england in the summer. less than a week until i leave oxford. tough when it's so lovely, but the beach beckons. hurrah.

monday, 14 june

overheard: 'this music makes me horny' -samantha

i took a much needed hangover exemption from the updating yesterday. not really. i wasn't too hung over from greg's brazilian beach party saturday night (best. fiesta. evah.). becky and kelli's visit was awesome. we went to a bbq with gretchen on saturday afternoon and then took a small contingent thence to greg's. i may have gotten really drunk on carlsberg (which can't be good for my karma). jack got some great pictures from the party. i'll try to steal some of them.

yesterday was magnificent. perfect sunday of 8th week. had a good workout. locked myself out of my room in just a towel. had to wander the quad in just a towel to find someone willing to go to the plodge to get my key. this adventure was followed by a lovely picnic at the chch sports ground. when i arrived, i'm afraid to say i didn't recognise a single person there. so weird. who are those kids? why have i never seen them before. i guess i don't run in the house jock groups, but still... anyway. then tristan showed up. i do run in the chch homme group. and julia. both brians. matt and dave. greg. lauren. various and sundry others. ate a hamburger (my 5th in 24 hours) and a hot dog (yum). we played the silliest game ever: rounders. weird. first time i've ever been the first person picked for a sports team, undoing a whole decade of dreading picking teams at recess games at cataldo. greg can't catch a ball to save his life. all in all, a fun afternoon. then went to early dinner and punting with JR, brian and mike and two bottles of wine.

'but [a.ho],' i hear you asking, 'whenever did you find time to revise for the oral exam you have today?' funny you should ask, mushmouth. i didn't. and the exam is in less than two hours. so i need to go study. and iron me some sub fusc. cross your fingers for me. and look for me drunk by noon. wooooooooo!

saturday, 12 june

overheard: 'he was, like, 12' -becky. 'but he was pretty cute' -gretchen.

hm. well, i didn't manage to watch the state funeral yesterday. i was impressed by the drinking game that the stranger made up for it, though. and wonkette even linked to it. what else? becky is in town this weekend with her friend kelly from MIT. so i'm mostly chilling with them. showing them the town, blah blah. but now i have to run off to a meeting with my supervisor. to ask him about what to stress over for my viva on monday.

friday, 11 june

happy 23rd birthday, stephen!
overheard: 'it's like porn, but you can touch it' -jack

is it just me, or does everyone i know have an early june birthday? what is it about september that makes people have sex? perhaps the cooling weather. in any case, london yesterday was less productive than i had hoped. the library materials i looked at weren't that useful. on the plus side, though, i did find out about some new manuscripts i hadn't known about previously. the online finding guides aren't so grand. lunch, on the other hand was quite nice. and i fell asleep on the bus ride back to oxford. so that meant i couldn't get to sleep until like 3 last night. not a happy place. saskia's party was great fun. saw a girl there (alli) whom i hadn't run into since the beginning of the year, but whom i think is super cool.

all other current events pale in comparison to this story from the seattle post-intelligencer about shaw island losing its nuns. so sad. so many bicycling memories. with nuns in them. and that awful pit toilet. ew. but i'm sure brandon is with me when i say that the franciscan sisters were pretty damn cool.

thursday, 10 june

happy birthday, unca gordy! old man.
overheard: 'these are my dress boots' -brian

gotta run to london, so more coming later, but for now i'll just say that it don't matter if you're french, american, english, or martian: i don't want to discuss your personal relationship with christ. jesus.

wednesday, 9 june

happy birthday, meg!
overheard: 'what children are you interested in?' -tea in dave and lauren's room

we'll begin with the fun parts of yesterday. i laid in the sun long enough to get some color. who knew it was possible in england? jack and suzie and mike and i had a picnic in the garden, and matt and dave and lauren were all there, as well. very nice. i showed mike the back end of the cathedral, some of which dates from the seventh century. and the little bit of a tan doesn't hurt, either. later, after a shower (and learning that my viva is scheduled for 10 monday morning), i was joined by paul and anna for evensong at the house, followed by dinner at lincoln college. their food: always so good. then i walked over to liddell to intrude on the 'last night as a flat' activities. i walked back with lizzie, which was itself very pleasant, but warm summer sky in tom quad was absolutely breathtaking. and then i got to talk to my mom for an hour or so. couldn't really ask for a better day.

on the less exciting side: we watched elephant last night at liddell. absolutely haunting. my capacity to keep forming coherent thoughts is waning. i did finally get to see the transit of venus. looked like a black speck on the sun. funniest newspaper story i've seen today: britain's health minister going all marie antoinette.

tuesday, 8 june

overheard: 'everyone would look fabulous if they had the money' -mike

yeah, so i tried to see this transit of venus crap, but no luck. thankfully, i hadn't been waiting my whole life to see it (unlike that guy on st giles). yesterday, i drank quite a lot of pimms. just about the right amount, probably, as i didn't have a hangover today. i did, on the other hand, have a red wine stain on my shirt. yes, i'm an idiot. working on getting it out, speaking of which, i had a great workout this morning, after a mediocre night's sleep. so this morning is all about writing letters and sitting in the library.

i have nothing insightful to say. ronald reagan is still dead. the flow of hagiography seems unstoppable. so it goes, i guess.

monday, 7 june

overheard: 'well, it is farther from london than my country house' -james

yesterday was perhaps the most quintessentially oxford day i've had. began with a trip to the gym. ok. that's not so oxford. but then brunch in hall was followed by a shower and a leisurely stroll to jericho for lunch in a cute little restaurant with jack and his family. no. that wasn't scary at all. they were all wearing white shirts. no one sent me the memo, though. so i wasn't. maybe i should invest in some linen. after lunch, a walk down the meadows and an hour or so of punting. my skills are improving rapidly. unlike the time when i went with becky, this jaunt didn't involve any efforts to drift into the north sea. after the punting, i took a shower, changed my outfit for the 8th time, and went to tea at jack's flat. everyone was there. got some caramel shortbread. and some carrot cake. and some squash. and then there was dinner at aziz. mmmm. such good indian food.

capping of the night was my friend paul's concert at the holywell music room. mozart's piano trio in C, K.542. wonderful, and followed (and perfectly contrasted) by mendelssohn's piano in d minor, op.49. i think chamber music may well be one of my favorite things about life in this town. also, while watching the concert, i was struck by how much stake i put in watching people interact. the music itself was lovely, of course. but i was far more enthralled by the way in which three people, working together, created it than in the final product. same deal, i suppose, with the rugby thing i watched yesterday at the gym. not an odd observation in itself, certainly, but surprising i only know became consciously aware of it.

in other areas, i'd like to bring to everyone's attention the existence of a dance mix of 'cry little sister' (yes that cry little sister). who knew? heard it at the gym yesterday. spooky. white-face flashbacks. i would also pose a question to you, my loyal readers: do the amish vote? we discussed it last night at the turf last night, but i left before a conclusion was reached. input is certainly welcome. any amish people reading this? i suppose not. OH! also exciting: allison d. is in london! i'm going to try to meet her there on thursday. and do some work. stoopid 70 degree days, making me want to spend my day in the garden instead of the library. and i may go to the alices' garden party this evening. huzzah.

sunday, 6 june

overheard: 'i am a chick with a dick' -tim

well, president reagan died yesterday. which is sad. i hope the last years of his life (and his death) raised general awareness of alzheimer's and that his widow will be able to moderate the GOP's antipathy toward stem cell research. i would that we were mourning the demise of republican fiscal irresponsibility, part of mr reagan's legacy to our nation. no such luck. but i remain thankful for his service to the US and the world in the last years of the cold war.

today's main theme will be sweating. i had a good workout. i'm currently weak with hunger. brunch is in a few minutes, and it will be followed at 1 pm by a meal with jack's family. scary. but yeah. then maybe more laying around in the master's garden with a book. tonight: evensong. formal hall. paul's recital. should be a good day, in the end.

saturday, 5 june

happy birthday, mikey!
overheard: 'i don't need viagra' -seb

how is it saturday of 6th week already? i want my trinity term back. only without the dissertation. congrats to seb, suzie and tim, who finished finals yesterday. and to greg, who finishes today. quite exciting. went to the new noodle bar at gloucester green for dinner last night. good. inexpensive. very hot. but, on the advice side: it's generally a good idea to wait for the paint to dry before opening the restaurant to the public. other than that, bang-up job. i've been running around like a chicken with its head cut off today. black tie dinner tonight. i'll take some pictures. maybe even put them up sometime. oxford is lovely in the summer.

friday, 4 june

overheard: 'ketchup is good for the prostate' -jack

first up today: the wedding invitation i received from my friend christine in spokane. sent 29 may (last saturday); arrived 3 june (5 days later); posted with a 37 stamp. now, i know tony blair has been accused of being bush's lap-dog, but i didn't know england had been annexed as our 51st state. wait. canada is the 51st (as we learned from jeremy's attempt to get his 90 day visa renewed after a trip to canada last week). that makes england the 52nd. check. as my friend JR quipped, 'devolution is all the rage here lately.'

it's downright lovely out today. i think i'll spend the mid to late afternoon sunning myself in the master's garden. maybe playing croquet. if i can remember how. congrats to all of jack's flatmates, who finish their exams today. also, good luck to brian as he (hopefully) grovels to save his funding. what else is new? i need a shower. but that's old news. 3 days old, at least.

as you will have noticed, george tenet resigned yesterday. bush almost forgot about it. the media promptly wet their collective pants, which is funny because we knew it would happen sooner or later. but i can't imagine how this is a good sign for the administration. it seems like a jobless tenet can only be a threat. doesn't he know everything that's ever happened...ever? scary. but without the gtown connection to tenet, how am i ever gonna get a job at the CIA?

thursday, 3 june

hearsay: 'oh. no, i've been to france' -matt, on being asked about whether he would be bothered by the poverty in nepal

i was at the gym this morning (i know: it's been a while), and i heard a dance mix of tracy chapman's song 'fast car', which i would have believed the least likely song to ever be dance-mixed. who knew. it was chch hom day at la fitness this morning. no surprise, really. in yesterday's news: all negative. jack's play was wonderful. emily makes a great overbearing dowager empress, let me tell you. my throat is slowly but surely getting better. today: library, pie day, library, archer meeting, dinner, graduate drinks (but not drinking and not staying for all too long. maybe buying some sudafed. that is all. to the bod!

wednesday, 2 june

overheard: 'ugly people make me want to kiss you' -monday night drinks

well well well. my throat hurts. that's the main story of the day. i'm returning to the land of libraries and note-taking. with little breaks at mid-day. and a break at 5 pm to go see jack's play. hurrah. yesterday i went to a new college exchange dinner. always nice to see my old friend kathleen (hurrah for her being here next year!). and meet some cool new kids. i really enjoy the new college MCR. the group of people, i mean. not the room itself. what else from yesterday? i didn't get to see jeremy, sadly. i went to bed early in an effort to cure my throat. which didn't quite work.

what else is going on in the world? the WP tells us that the white house is 'hopeful the tide has turned in iraq' according to the front page of their website. it's notable that the actual headline of the article seems to be 'many hurdles ahead for US'. (it also doesn't jive with an AP headline from yesterday's NYT: bush lowers hope for new iraq troops. the disparity forces me to wonder when the last time this white house wasn't hopeful. wouldn't hopefulness be a tacit acknowledgment that things aren't going amazingly well already? have the bushies ever been willing to acknowledge such heresy? so, an award for disingenuous web-billing to the online editors of the post today. campaign desk continues to please, with a new piece from brian montopoli today. OH! almost forgot. a (georgetwon-educated) democrat won the special election held yesterday in south dakota to replace the house seat vacated by repulbican bill janklow, who was convicted of vehicular manslaughter earlier this year. she'll have to be reelected in the november general election if she wants to keep her seat longer than seven months, but it's ecouraging to know that dems have picked up house seats in two special elections this year.

tuesday, 1 june

overheard: 'some people are so particular about what they put up their noses' -post club drinks

i think i had 3 days in one yesterday. it was a bank holiday, so i got some work in before the gym at 9 and brunch at 11.30. then went to the new harry potter movie. which was grood. i mean great; great and good. then a few distractions, followed by tea with matt, dave, and laurn. which was a perfect way to spend the afternoon. a little work, then dinner. then a little more work, followed by big gay drinks at exeter and some out out out. my relationship with going to clubs, i've decided, is very tenuous. we have mutual friends, but i don't think we'd ever hang out by ourselves. on the plus side, though, jeremy is back in town for a couple days! which is darn exciting. so last night he and mike and i relived the first half of the night that we got drunk in my room and climbed all over balliol's graduate annex trying to find a party. good times.

at one point yesterday, i was tired of doing my work, but no one was around to play with, so i read the note in tutto. i know: it's an achievement. there are a couple things from yesterday's papers i thought worthy of general consumption: the first is an NYT report that, on the hill, there is an increasingly bipartisan feeling that the current WH has run amok and that the congress needs to resume its constitutionally-mandated role of oversight. good work, congresspeople! it's about damn time. secondly, and more importantly, is the front page story from yesterday's WP on the bush team's overwhelmingly negative campaign. i particularly liked the quote from dole's campaign manager: '"The Bush campaign is faced with the hard, true fact that they have to keep their boot on his neck and define him on their terms," Reed said. That might risk alienating some moderate voters or depressing turnout, "but they don't have a choice," he said.' no choice because he's so far in the trench he's dug himself that he may as well sling some mud trying to dig himself out.

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