March 2008 minutiae
Tomorrow I will probably walk to London Drugs and buy a lint brush
That is such a boring sentence
- I have always had some slight OCD-ish tendencies (as documented here
from time to time) but recently one of them has started to become really
strong: I go outside, I lock the door behind me, I go down the stairs to
the car, I get in the car, and I think, "Oh no — did I lock the
door? I need to check." Sometimes this is because I lock the door
without consciously registering that I am doing so, like when you're in
the shower and are about to turn off the water and have to check the
wetness of the shampoo bottle to see whether you washed your hair. But
sometimes I think to myself, "I am now locking the door," and fifteen
seconds later I'm about to start up the car and I think, "Did I lock the
door? I need to check!"
- Vanity Fair: There is no one more hated among Hamas members than
Muhammad Dahlan, long Fatah's resident strongman in Gaza. Looks
like I picked the right two names to drop!
- I noticed that the Berkeley BART station has a phone book dangling
along a wall that used to support a bank of pay phones, all of which
have been removed. Pay phones have almost disappeared, of course, but
it occurred to me that it's especially telling that they would vanish
from a train station. I mean, yes, you can make an argument that
almost everyone has a cell phone now, so at this point those who still
don't just have to deal. But couldn't you make the same case about
- Seen on Sproul Plaza: a sign for the "Cal Queer & Asian Club". I
thought, "Hunh, what's the point of getting those two groups to hang
out together?" Then I looked at the people sitting at the table and
realized the ampersand signified the intersection and not the union.
- Seen on Sproul Plaza: a sign for the "Cal Pre-Dental Society". I
guess that one's for babies. Once you start teething, you're out!
- Ah, the 1980s.
I'm sure all those parents nervously pacing the halls of the ICU, as their
three-pound infants locked away in their incubators struggle to survive,
are thinking the same thing: Man, this would be a great idea for a toy
- In the past year I have encountered multiple women named Michael.
What's up with that?
- I was recently asked to what extent my mind works visually. Here's
my response: "I'm not a hugely visual reader or writer, not enough to be
able to draw you the scene (even if I could draw). I do tend to get pieces
of images, though. A room might be mostly a blank in my mind, except I know
exactly what the corner of the coffee table looks like, as well as the
newspaper on the desk (but not the desk itself). I'll never have a full
picture of a character, but I can imagine her eyes in one scene, the left
corner of her mouth in another, the curve of her right breast in another.
Maybe this is why I like aspect-to-aspect transitions."
- I cannot begin to measure how important it is to my mental health to
look out the window while taking a shower and see some blue sky.
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