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The contents of this website are mine personally and do not reflect any position of the U.S. government or the Peace Corps.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Making a Home

Mckays Taphouse is fast becoming a favorite hangout! If you're from Bellingham and have never been, seriously, go check that place out. It used to just be boring old Pizza Pipeline, selling cardboard pizza to hungry college students at late hours for cheap prices. But now! I can't believe I've waited this long to become a regular.

I'm working on their Beer Club, which includes 110 different beer varieties. Tonight I checked off numbers 7 and 8. (I'm just starting! And I didn't think it was fair to write down beers I'd drank before I knew about the Club.) The goal is to get halfway there, to 55, before I graduate and head off for the wild north of Alaska!

This evening I also enjoyed one of the perks of being a regular: the hookup. Before, I'd managed to charm the server into giving us free breadsticks he'd made by accident. That didn't quite count because he probably would have given them to the first person to suggest it. But tonight, after we'd chowed down pizza and guzzled some beers and asked for the check, the owner came by to plop down a glass of "dessert beer" (!!!!!) I didn't even know something like that existed! It was fantastic - chocolate raspberry alcoholic deliciousness.

I don't know what's best. Free beer, the fact that chocolate raspberry beer exists, or that I'm officially a regular at a bar. All I know is that I can't wait to go back and check off numbers 9 and 10.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Woe to the Unprepared

Had to borrow my coworker's guard shirt today because I (stupid, stupid) left mine nicely folded next to the door in my rush to leave. This coworker has an absolutely awful undiagnosed case of halitosis (or just bad oral hygiene, whatever), but what I didn't know is that laundry isn't big on the To Do list, either. That shirt REEKED. It was absolutely rank and foul. Out on deck, in the humid chlorine-heavy air, it was easy to ignore. But stepping into the cool quiet of a bathroom or lobby also released those pent-up smells, causing me to gag and hold my breath.

It gets worse. Later, as I'm changing clothes at home, I got a whiff of my own self. IT WASN'T MY BO THAT I WAS SMELLING. The stench of the shirt literally seeped into my pores, following me around as I continued on with my life. It was stalking me, haunting every step I took. I bet it spread to my sweater and is now, slowly but surely, passing on its terror to all the clothes in my closet.

Gross gross gross gross gross.

On the plus side, I will never, ever forget my own shirt again.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Why I Steal from the Internet

Hard drive crashed over the last few days. I lost mostly everything (but not EVERYTHING). Fortunately I'd been feeling uncomfortably stable financially. The price of taking care of it all put me right back where I feel safest: broke.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Only slightly kidding

What with my cold and all the times I'm writing "consumption" in this paper, I feel like giving it all up and burying myself in a Victorian novel. Back then, girls got by on being pretty and witty, and didn't have to struggle for things like degrees and management positions. I wouldn't mind going back to a time when consumption was less part of trending patterns and had more to do with your sick and dying sister.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Finals Week Distractions

Sitting in the computer lab, guzzling Dead Week discounted coffee, trying to write a final research paper. Instead, this:

Whiskey: He'll make you try things you'd never done before, then tell all his friends about it later. Yet somehow, you keep coming back for more.

Vodka: Seduce you and tell you how much she loves you, then wake you up at 7am, screaming and throwing things at you while you're still hungover.

Tequila: Catches you up in the madness of the moment, but the next morning you wake up alone, half-naked, in a part of town you've never seen before.

Rum: The bad-decision hookup that you're trying to convince yourself never happened, even as it's happening.

[added at 10:30pm]
(Irish) Coffee: That friend that's always there for you the next morning, but you'd only ever think about hooking up with when you're really desperate (and then you're just imagining that he's whiskey).

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Overshare

I've had IBS since I was 18. Pooping is an awkward topic for most people; they don't like hearing about it. But it's such a huge and important part of my life that sometimes it's really hard to hold back. (That's why I like traveling so much. Travelers have pooping problems, and since we're all strangers we have no qualms about discussing it over breakfast. The best travel stories involve poop.)

So last night, I had a dream that I pooped. It was a big, wonderful, fully-shaped and solid disposal. Just like the kind I almost never see.

When I woke up and realized it was just a dream, I felt pretty bummed. Today's not looking so hot after that start.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Let me tell you 'bout a friend of mine

We met years back, so far back that I can't remember how old we were. Maybe if I tried really, really hard I could pinpoint the year, but it's easier to explain in terms of who I was then. I was in junior high, I used sun-in to highlight my hair, and I was still interested in going to church camp with my cousin and trying to stay best-friends with an old Idaho friend. We'd seen Mallrats earlier that summer; I'd bought a VHS copy on sale and we'd watched it repeatedly for weeks on end.

That's how I met this friend. Because of Mallrats.

Someone was talking about it, and from across the pavilion I shouted, "Mallrats is the best movie ever!" Oh, the moments that define our youth. The commentator and I talked excitedly about our shared movie, and then his friend walked up. I was introduced to this friend, and it just so happened that I had his name on a piece of paper in my pocket. Turns out that silly summer camp games can be worth something, because I "got" him. We hit it off pretty well from there.

That summer he almost lit his hair on fire in the woods behind the camp. Later, he got an older friend to drive him 45 minutes down the freeway so we could hang out at the water park in my hometown. He picked me a daisy on a walk to the convenience store.

Fast forward a few years. I'd see him occasionally, in sporadic bursts. It seems like it was always summertime. We'd go to music festivals in Seattle. I envied the easy relaxed atmosphere in his group of friends; I always felt like I was faking something to fit in around him. I watched him fight a friend with kendo sticks by streetlight; later someone was bleeding, but I don't remember if it was him or not. One night I brought a highly-valued water bottle full of vodka to his house. In the middle of looking at funny pictures of cats on the internet, he took a giant swig of the "water". Whoops. I'd forgotten to tell him. Another summer he introduced me to the guy who pierced my tongue without asking for ID. The piercing lasted less than a year. But I still have a black-and-white photo of that friend sitting on the couch at the tattoo parlor, backlit from the sunlight shining through the windows.

Then off to college! This friend and I saw each other a lot less. He got a girlfriend, I got a boyfriend. His girlfriend broke his heart; the same happened to me. We didn't see much of each other. Instead he sent me pictures of the sharks he caught while out on his commercial fishing jobs. Once he came up to visit and we got very drunk and, well, things got a bit awkward after that night. I didn't try so hard to see him anymore.

Well, this friend is back. He's down in the harbor, working on the fishing boat that will soon take him out to sea. Alaska this time; a first for him. He used to fish out of Astoria, just minutes away from that same cousin who was with me when we met. He called me up and wanted to hang out. Despite my bravado in always telling him that "we should hang out soon!", I wasn't really sure how it would go.

But silly me. I guess when you've known someone over as many years as we have, it takes a lot to ruin the friendship. We drank wine out of jam jars; we smoked cigarettes in the rain and talked about baiting hooks; we heated soup in the microwave and watched Fargo with a sleeping bag for a blanket. And things aren't so awkward as I thought they'd be.