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sunday, 31 october

overheard: 'where's the vagina in your relationship?' -seb

green river flows
like grass melting
later it will run black
down its track
into an ocean
she stands on the bridge
dim light on her back
i will carry you

pretty darn good halloween party last night. not as good as the 2002 halloween-orama at morris house. i will happily note, however, that in my life i've only been slapped by women on two occasions. the first was bern at the aforementioned jvc party. the second was last night, by jack's flatmate lara. in both cases, it was probably well-deserved.

don't ask me why, and i may regret saying this wednesday morning (although, really, i can come back and change it without feeling at all bad), but i have a feeling kerry will win. and the world will rejoice. we will witness dancing in the streets. and parties. spontaneous giggling. all that jazz. ok. now some real work.

saturday, 30 october

overheard: 'can we please change the subject?' -henry

alright, so yesterday was just wonderful. got quite a lot of work done at the library in the morning, then did a little shopping at m&s. just the essentials, you know: wine, juice, crumpets, butter and raspberry jam. oh. and spinach. then went home and ate lunch and did nothing for a bit, until i went to the far-away sainsbury's with jack and henry. let me tell you: it's amazing. clean. less expensive. HUGE. it was like a little slice of america. except they had this really neat bread-slicing machine that jack and i proved incapable of using. whoops. i took my favourite salad to a dinner party at charley and willis's house. didn't even burn the almonds when candying them. jack took fried rice. i flatter myself that they were the two best dishes at the party. after eating (it was good to see brian and charley and jennifer, whom i miss running into on a daily basis), we had a leisurely walk home. a very nice evening. practically ideal.

one tiny request: could everyone please visit the website of the cherwell, one of oxford's student newspapers, and vote for Christ Church (aka my friend mike) for fit college of the week. many thanks!

friday, 29 october

overheard: 'some of my bits were too big. others were too small' -stu

ok. quick interesting news rundown, then i'll maybe do a little update. good news in the seattle pi about the monorail recall. cutest. photos. ever. in this article from the nyt about st bernards. kinda sad that the monks are getting rid of them, though. maybe my parents want one? guster would love it. depressing editorial, also in the nyt, about state bans on same sex marriage. and, finally, more of the wankers in the gop and their democracy-undermining efforts to challenge the voting rights of thousands of black people in swing states. this legalisation of the elections has to stop somewhere. it really does.

ok. didn't do enough work yesterday. hopefully will have better luck today. yesterday was very warm. today seems about the same. how is it friday of 3rd week already? someone push the pause button on this term.

thursday, 28 october

overheard: 'what are you looking for?!' -angry jack, 6.30 am

yes. so yesterday i discovered that an 11 minute phone call to my mom cost me 2.10. so i may be looking for cheaper ways of getting in touch. like flying home. which, incidentally, i will be doing six weeks from today. i got a confirmation of my denver hotel reservation in email yesterday. mom: i'm guessing that's your doing. but that is neither here nor there.

i'm running late today, on account of having spent most of the morning working on an application for an internship in seattle, DC or san francisco. keep your fingers crossed for me. the only thing i want you to look at now is this bbc article about the bush campaign blocking their website from overseas IP addresses. which means not just the nonvoting foreigners, but also expats (overwhelmingly democrats). my guess, though, is that those on military bases overseas (overwhelmingly republicans) have IP addresses assigned through arin and can therefore still access it. what an f-ing wanker.

wednesday, 27 october

overheard: 'i think the thing that sets bain apart is the man with his legs spread' -consulting recruiter

voted yesterday. for a republican! ok. just one republican, out of maybe a dozen partisan offices on the ballot. but, see, i'm a crossover voter. but i'm unwilling to put a republican in the white house. or in charge of my state's public lands. he's brobably invent a button that makes it snow at the beach. i called my mom yesterday and distracted her from her work. that was nice. for her, too, i'm sure.

i was very impressed by the bain recruiting thing last night; free beer, you know? and by dinner: chicken pie followed with peach crumble. two of my favourite things ever. today i'm going to the library. hopefully before the high winds show up. and the rain. and boy do i have a lot to do. what's for dinner in hall tonight, i wonder?

several very weird dreams last night. amanda decided to have a city/country party for her 22nd birthday. i'm not entirely sure what it entailed, but i think it had something to do with taking a bunch of "city animals" to a farm and setting up a petting zoo. the only city animals i can think of, though, are rats and pigeons. and housecats and little dogs. which would make for a very interesting petting zoo, i guess. oh. and later in the dream becky was getting married. and jack decided that instead of going into i-banking, he'd get a job as a diamond thief. the private jet was nice. and sparkly.

politics: don't look at the electoral vote thing. it's depressing. anyone know of a good party tuesday night? the one at the union is sold out. and i need to drink somewhere. even if i'm doing it alone. there's an article in today's WP about the prospect of an electoral college tie. which is what i call constitutional armageddon. there's also an interesting week-long photography series starting in the guardian today. might be worth following.

tuesday, 26 october

overheard: 'if you go through the back door, it's fine' -pablo

no. not two days of hangover. i went to london with jack to stay at his parents' house, eat dim sum, play with max and read tons of wills at the guildhall. which was satisfying but slower-going than i had hoped. and it took over half an hour to get from st paul's to marble arch, where i just barely missed the oxford bus and had to wait around in the cold cold cold. it's amazing how much two nights away from oxford feels like a vacation. not least because jack's family are such amazing hosts. hurrah.

a variety of sidenotes today: first, i still haven't received my postal ballot yet. starting to get nervous. number b: read the nyt editorial on the republicans' kinky ohio vote-challenging scheme. utter rubbish. if the reds are focusing on minority areas, can't the voting rights act of 1965 be invoked? oh. wait. bush would have to invoke it, wouldn't he? this is probably a question for my cousin michael, who knows everything about that law. well, and everything generally. ok. next, i just found out that next year's boat race is scheduled for 27 March. which, yes, is easter day. absurd. totally absurd. tonight: pie for dinner and then a bain consulting presentation. with case studies. oh my.

saturday, 23 october

overheard: 'since Americans are twice as likely to believe in the Devil as in evolution, I also think it's stupid of liberals to forfeit the religious field' -kristof

yesterday was characterised by one thing: work. tons and tons of work. which was satisfying, until i reached the end only to figure out that i'd missed a heading and had almost the same amount of work to do over again. argh! so that didn't help my mood much. thankfully, henry came to the rescue with a great persian meal, two beers, and witty banter.

while i'd love to stay and chat, i really do have to get to the library, as it's only open until 1 pm today.

friday, 22 october

overheard: 'don't be stupid. he's welsh.' -lara

last night i went to the most AMAZING seminar. i won't bore you with all the details, but it renewed my faith in social policy. and it reminded me of how much i miss JVs and JV-esque people, who are very much lacking in my life in oxford. sad day. BUT the talk was still really great. and followed by white wine and, later, vegetable stir fry with minimal carbs. mom would be proud.

there's an article in the seattle p-i today about the house race in spokane. very interesting. how on earth is cathy mcmorris leading don barbieri in the polls? one wonders, sometimes, whether everyone in spokane is on crack. but, hey, they haven't called me for any of the surveys, and i'm voting for barbieri. as are (i hope?!) my sisters who haven't been called. maybe the spokane expat vote will be real big. actually, i read somewhere that the whole cell-phone user thing can skew polls substantially. ok. daytime.

psych. late addendum: someone sent maureen dowd a book. not unusual, right? right. except they sent it to the address where my sister amanda lives in DC. which leads me to believe two things: 1)maureen dowd is squatting in their attic. or maybe in their basement. with man. and 2)the times really needs to start paying her better. amanda's house is a sh*t-hole.

thursday, 21 october

overheard: 'sweet nut sampler!' -bucky katt

i'm in a rush today, so i can't even think of what i was going to write. had tea with devi yesterday. she's lovely, as always. dinner with mike and olivia. second dinner with jack. was very productive yesterday until my desire to take an afternoon nap kicked in. then it was all downhill. still, i can't complain. i've decided amanda should go into advertising. she'd be good at it.

wednesday, 20 october

overheard: 'i'm so excited. i love purchasing hair products' -i have no idea. no. really.

where to begin with yesterday? i finally talked to my parents. hurrah. they made it back from dc safely. no leaves, though. again. i told them to send bo to college in vermont. then they could see some leaves. bo doesn't like to be shuffled around at my whims, though. i know: he's weird.

it has been said that liddell is like a retirement community. i think that's about right. i wander around on the paths. i don't leave my flat when it rains. there's that emergency pull cord in the bathtub. the only thing missing is gramma k.

highlights of yesterday: dinner was actually good. yeah. like not just tolerable. good. the fried banana thing was a little odd. but i'm not complaining. and then mike and i went to a bcg thing at freud. where we saw nick, megan, dave, and various and sundry other people. one guy mistook me for an employee of bcg and asked me all sorts of unusual questions about operations in south africa. yeah.

tuesday, 19 october

overheard: i got nothin today

i would like to point out, however, that i tried my hardest to update yesterday. but my ftp server thwarted every effort. hopefully today we'll get along better. i'm very glad to have the loseley indexing behind me. in celebration, i went and joined the union. why? because i'm completely crazy. so now i'm more than a little broke: i'm a ton broke. but whatever. amanda had an interview yesterday. i hope it went well.

the washington post is running a series of editorials comparing the two presidential platforms on a variety of policy issues. you should follow them. the nyt gave a one-off kerry endorsement sunday. this wp way of doing things means that the editorial board gets to blast bush and praise kerry for, like, a whole week. fun!

monday, 18 october

7 years (already?)
overheard: 'don't you have a joke to tell?' -jack

mmmm. lemon tree yesterday for lunch may well have been even better than on wednesday night. so very good. roast beef was amazing. the poached pear was better than the burnt cream, though. oh well. while i love the cookies, i think a call from my parents would be even better (and less expensive!). hint. hint. hint. i finished the loseley index this morning. best moment of term so far. besides the three amazing meals i've had in the last week. fate needs to quit spoiling me.

for my spokane crew: thinking of you in particular today. hope you're all well. i love you, and i can't wait to see you at christmas.

sunday, 17 october

overheard: 'the great thing about driving in montana is you can go as fast as you want. and there are monster trucks EVERYWHERE' -mandahouse

wait. pause. why is it already so late in october? why have i been doing the exact same thing every day for two straight weeks now? can i do something new and exciting tomorrow? please? well, yes, i can and will, but i'll need to do a lot of boring work today to make it happen.

in that spirit, i'm only going to make one observation today: there was an AP photo taken yesterday by Matthew S Gunby showing two older women, one in a wheelchair, bundled up in the early morning light in salisbury, MD. they'd been waiting outside since 4.30 am for access to the 200 flu shots the public health department was giving out. there must be a better way to distribute these, surely, than making people already at risk of becoming sick risk their health further by sitting outside at ungodly hours? just a thought.

saturday, 16 october

overheard: 'where is there time for life amidst all that drive?' -anne-marie

sorry about the poor updating this week, but it must continue for another day. AMAZING dinner at a little restaurant called kensington place last night. very good. little bit of a funk today. clearing up soon, i hope.

thursday, 14 october

overheard: 'you mind if i come in the back' -next table over at lemon tree.

no. not hungover today. just a horribly late update. i literally did work all day. except when i was watching the debate. i think kerry did a lot more bush-whacking in debate 2 than he did last night. but the polls seem to think kerry won this more clearly than he did the town hall meeting last friday. i can live with that.

i'm feeling a bit overwhelmed by the scope of my phd dissertation right now. and more than a bit jealous that my parents are going to DC today to see amanda. but i'll see them 8 weeks from today. which isn't too awfully long.

dinner at the lemon tree last night was very good. and very expensive. i'm not sure if it was as good as the little fountain cafe. it was certainly spendier. but anniversaries only come once a year, right? right. ok. back to work.

wednesday, 13 october

overheard: 'i fell in love with you at tesco' -jack

commence year two. with a huge smile. and i can't stand up. but that's fine. i won consultancy yesterday. business is silly. what on earth do i want to do with my life? i can tell you one things, anyway: it was a joy to run into sue on broad street yesterday. basically made my day. especially since i was feeling kinda bad about having just spend 139.89 on books at blackwells. goodness gracious. that's a lot of money. but hopefully chch will pay me back. and for the record i ran, full clip, from keble to christ church last night to make it to dinner on time. yeah. i know.

just three little articles for you to read today. as an aside, can you believe that the last presidential debate is tonight? i hope bush chokes on in petulance and gets very red in the face. a big vein in his forehead wouldn't bother me, either. visual gold. ok, back to the news. first: the house of commons voted overwhelmingly (426-49) in favor of the (gay) civil partnership bill at yesterday's second reading. here's what the guardian and the bbc had to say about it. it's a constitutionally complicated issue, though, because unlike the other bill that's been causing friction between the two chambers (the hunting ban), the CP bill originated in the house of lords, so even if the government feels very passionate about the issue, it can't invoke the parliament act. oh, britain. the only other little tidbit that caught my eye was this nyt article about fancy-pants beers. made me think of my mac housers. miss you all.

tuesday, 12 october

overheard: 'we've got a great country. i love our values' -W, debate 2.

compare the president's tendency to be violently inarticulate to tony blair's vision for the future of the welfare state: 'i want to see social mobility...rising once again, becoming a dominant feature of british life'. i'm constantly disappointed by america's learned ignorance of class differences. then again, i'm often bothered by the watering down of standards in the search for class mobility, as evidenced in this guardian article about the revived history admissions test being used at oxford from this autumn.

i have my first meeting of the year with my supervisor today, sandwiched between the first power in american politics lecture and formal hall, which i'll make it to on time if i'm lucky. it looks a bit miserable outside, but i'm working in my room for most of the day, i think. note to parents: try to call me before you leave for DC thursday, eh? mwah!

monday, 11 october

first day of school! i'll take a picture.
overheard: 'you look good when you smile, house.' -random straight man at the bop

well, it's monday of first week, which means a few things. most importantly, it means i'm gonna actually start going to some lectures. i think. there's one on drama, history, and politics during the reign of E1 at the history faculty today. we'll see if it's any good. it's COLD today. i'm gonna wear a coat. after lunch in college, i think i'll head to duke humfrey's library to look at boring old stuff. lgb drinks tonight at magdalen. show up.

yesterday was pretty low-key. i bought some tumblers and pillows at m&s. brunch in hall. coffee with JP, planning a georgetown oxonian drinks thing monday of 4th week. show up. yeah, and then just a lot of work. sorry. i'm boring today.

sunday, 10 october

overheard: 'you're only as strong as the tables you dance on, the drinks you mix, the beliefs you fight for, and the friends you hold onto.' -marie

first, a message from the illustrious mandahouse: 'i have to make a correction to your blog. the correct w quote was "there's rumors on the internets" so not only do we now have multiple internets, we have also lost any sense of subject-verb agreement. i'm moving to canada if america Fs up again in november....' thank you, little sister, for the accuracy watch.

i have no complaints about yesterday: a good-sized breakfast. lunch at rhodes house: a warden with a soul! what a great change! i stopped by blackwell on my way home to see what i should spend my book grant on. this will be fun. 10% discount for students there through wednesday. which means more books. just don't ask me what i plan to do with them when i leave next summer. in the afternoon, i went to the JCR gay drinks, formal hall and a few subject drinks parties before ending up at the GCR (where i got to see the recently-engaged lizzie) and the bop. which was good, though the music could have been better.

there's no interesting news today. none. at all. sorry. on to brunch!

saturday, 9 october

overheard: 'i hate the old library; it's so far away!' -guy in peckwater quad, no more than 200 yards from the old library

new google search news: i'm hit number 6 for non nude girls in sweatpants. i KNOW! i flatter myself that my tea went well yesterday. only two new kids, but i got six returners. so that was nice. i continue to slodge through the DNB entries that involve blackfriars, but before too long, i'll return to the loseley mss. OH! speaking of which, i finally heard from my supervisor again yesterday. i'm glad to hear that he's still alive. today, i actually have lunch at rhodes house.

i've only watched the first few questions so far, but damn kerry debates well. and bush is a brat. as the bbc says: bush spoke like a preacher, kerry like a lawyer. ooooh. nugget of gold from w: "there are rumors on the internets". golly gee! while we're talking about politics, i discovered two hilarious political videos for y'all to watch: this land and good to be in DC. i hear that the latter was on the tonight show thursday. but i don't live in the US. so didn't see that.

friday, 8 october

overheard: 'stroke me.' -jack

big gay tea. gcr. 4.30 pm. today. be there. if you're a chch graduate student and queer, i mean. i keep thinking of that quote from the ani difranco song 'grey': 'what kind of paradise am i looking for? i've got everything i want, and still i want more.' i didn't sleep very well last night, so now i'm somewhere in between sleepy, uncomfortable, and grumpy. i was, however, amused by the following caption in the seattle p-i photo section: 'A clay target breaks apart in Oshkosh, Wis., as Patrick Flanigan attempts to break a world record for most hand-thrown clay targets individually shot with a semi-automatic shotgun without any assistance.' right

i have ridiculous amounts of work to do today. i actually got quite a lot done yesterday, though. until i discovered the new dictonary of national biography. unless you or your university subscribes, you can't really experience the wonders of this website, but let me tell you that it's amazing. and i love it.

two (related) things to read today: relevant people's hypothetical questions for bush and kerry in tonight's town hall.

Ohana means family, and family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten.

thursday, 7 october

overheard: 'the provinces are so hard to navigate' -some pretence

two big things to say today. the first, of course, is the electoral vote counter numbers you see above. much better than any time since the rep.con. yay! the second is a huge congratulations to seb and tash on their engagement: hurrah! it couldn't have happened to two nicer people.

i had a dream last night in which my parents and i went to drop off amanda for her last year at gtown, and the dorm she was told she was living in hadn't been built yet. inconvenient. so we found her another dorm to live in, but she refused. because freshman wouldn't know where it was. i think she was just being difficult.

julie and shannon are up in vermont this weekend visiting baxter. how jealous am i?

wednesday, 6 october

overheard: 'i like them legal. just not that legal' -nick

well, first morning back at la fitness. haven't worked out for 9 weeks. so i'm guessing that tomorrow i'll be too sore to walk. so perhaps a hot shower is in the cards for me today. and...some work, perhaps? yesterday was a hangover day, as you may have guessed by the lack of an update. apologies. i'm way behind on just about everything i need to be doing.

i'm still watching the webcast of the VP debate, so i won't say who i thought won. but cheney is a forceful rhetorician. john edwards is kinda a pushover. so the immediate impression may seem to be that the scales tips toward the reds. but methinks, perhaps, that the fudging done by mr cheney was pretty obvious. oh. and it's just the VPs. they don't matter. bush can't remember numbers or voting records or headlines. cheney can. so the worst is over. bring back the big guns, and we'll see our petulant president throw more temper tantrums.

monday, 4 october

overheard: 'you don't have to masturbate...or maybe you do' -my mom's advice on prostate health

my dad's on a fishing trip this week. hopefully the weather in idaho is better than the weather here. miserable. i was going to run errands today, but i'm certainly not going out in this. so i'll start tackling the seemingly endless mounds of work i have. stressy.

went to lunch at branca with chris yesterday. that was nice. got rained on a bit. and did a little work. my mom called in the evening (hurrah!) and i got to talk to robert about the dance he went to saturday night. now we're in the throes of 0th week, so i really do have to get back to work.

sunday, 3 october

overheard: 'i'm your indian family' -jack

i think i may be a little bit homesick. just for things to work smoothly and efficiently. or even just to know who's in charge (so i know whom i can complain to when things go awry). lots of people seemed to get back to oxford yesterday. i went to dinner with jack and dave. it's always good to see him. and i think mike gets back tomorrow. i met my flatmate, john, on friday. he's nice. quiet. a 2nd year chemistry dphil student. i'm still a bit disappointed that my room smells of stale cigarette smoke, but i'll get over it.

i really need to get back to doing a lot of work every waking hour. why is the gym so far away?

just a couple things worth reading in the papers. i won't even comment on them, because i want to get back to work. number 1: ridiculous squirrel-hunting story in the NYT. number B: you da ho. number 3: the third part of that washington post series on growing up gay in "real" america. (mini comment: i'm not sure what real america is, but it seems to have something to do with bibles).

saturday, 2 october

overheard: 'oh! my underwear!' -GEG

mini update: grumpy yesterday. england doesn't work. dinner was great. lunch at rhoho today. hurrah.

friday, 1 october

overheard: '35,000...it's a lot of money for a handbag. it's not a lot of money.' jack

ok, so two days of no updates. apologies. i don't even know what day it is right now. or what meal i should be eating. or when i should go back to bed. but i'm cool with all that. my room is nice. a bit awkwardly shaped. i'm not sure what to do with, say, the bed. or the desk. or myself. but it will work out. last night jack and i had a celabratory dinner at chiang mai, which we followed with a brief appearance at all bar one to greet the new rhodents. they seem pretty cool. free lunch tomorrow with them. hurrah! yeah. free lunch. that's what i said. i also had a meeting which could, perhaps, influence what i do with the rest of my life. maybe why that's i feel stressed today. or maybe it's the tons of work i feel looming over my head.

three beers last night spread over three hours = hangover today. damn binge drinking.

i need a tom gate key. and my stuff. and to figure out how to use my room phone.

hurrah for another failed vote on the FMA. i'm currently watching the webcast of the pres debate. kerry seems to have done very well. i won't hold my breath for the polls, though. home stretch.

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