Inferior Imitator

ep·i·gone n. A second-rate imitator or follower, especially of an artist or a philosopher.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Speaking of living in a Jeff Foxworthy routine...

Wilton mayor arrested for trafficking marijuana.

Monday, September 25, 2006

My reunion turned out to be a non-event, all things considered. We had a pretty decent turn out, about half the class showed up. The committee said they were able to track down everyone, everyone except the guy who was last seen on America's Most Wanted for fraud. "If we had found him," I said, "we could have had one hell of a party!" The award for furthest traveled went to the Navy SEAL, who is stationed in San Diego. My mom and his mom refer cakes to each other, and Mom told me later he's had an offer to become a "ghost" to do super-secret missions.

There were a couple of the younger babies there, and we talked about maybe next time doing something more family-friendly so we can see each others' kids. There are people with old kids in my class! I think we managed to get ourselves graduated from high school with only one parent in the class, so that fact was a little suprising, though I don't know why.

Beyond the whole "where are you and what are you doing?" questions, it was a little difficult to make conversation. It's an odd feeling to talk to a stranger that is familiar to you. We have all been changed by ten years' passage of time, and it was kinda neat to see how people have grown up. Or haven't, as the case may be. It was also interesting to see who showed up and who didn't. It was pretty much the people you'd expect to show up, plus a few surprises. The surprises were the people I was glad to see the most, because they, like me, had gotten past what high school had been like, and were comfortable in the present. You might say these are the ones who had grown up the most.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

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My new neighbor Doug is, in Lew's words, the shit. In the two months he's lived here, he's learned the life story of everyone in my neighborhood. So it came as no suprise to me to learn that John Kerry would be visiting his home for the Iowa/Iowa State game. Somehow Doug ended up being tailgate headquarters for the Dave Loebsack campaign (he's running against Jim Leach). And as part of the campaign, John Kerry came to stump for Dave, right next door! So my brother and I got to meet John Kerry and get a picture taken with him. It took ages to get the picture - my first photographer whiffed the picture, so I had to wait in line again with a more competent photographer. Thanks, Chelsea!

I'm really glad that I convinced Lew to come down for it, even though we were unable to track down a ticket for him. He discovered the joys of charging people for stuff. Well, he's always been a opportunist, but I think it was rekindled. When the Butterstick (my first RV parkers) couldn't get their satellite television to work, he charged them $50 to hook up to my cable. He also caught a few people peeing in my backyard and extorted $5 out of each of them. I took a cut of the cable fee, but he still made out pretty well. What with the cash and the free food and beer, the trip was definitely worth it!

I'm not sure I'll let the RV back again. They left so much crap for me to pick up. I gave them three garbage bags, and I still had to pick up five bags full of trash. I did get some free stuff that they left behind: three lawn chairs, a cooler on wheels, four bags of unopened chips, half a case of beer, an ice mug, and a nice koozy. If I let them back, it will be on the condition they clean up after themselves.

That evening, we went to Old Capitol (old Brewery) for Josh's birthday. Every time we go, the service is poor and the food takes forever. I don't know why we keep giving it a chance. We ordered onion rings, and when they came, it looked like they cut onions in half and filled the bowls with batter, and they were completely underdone. Gross! We sent them back twice and finally got free cheese fries. I'm only going there again if I'm not eating.

Monday, September 18, 2006

My internet at home went down! What fan-crap-tastical timing! I can't get my pictures uploaded! I'm really pissed. I have a great story, and it just won't be nearly as good without the picture. But I did get the picture. I'll try it one more time tonight, and if I can't get connected, I'll tell the story anyway. Damn computer.

I need another weekend to recover from the weekend.

Friday, September 15, 2006

God, I love my town! Granted I've lived in exactly two places in my life, but when you can go eat a fabulous lunch from the natural food market for $6, including drink, eat outside on the patio being serenated by a flautist while reading a library book, and then follow up by getting a 32 oz. Vanilla Coke to take back to the office for 50 cents, there's not a whole lot of places I'd rather be.

Plus, the excitement over the Iowa/Iowa State game tomorrow is palpable. It's going to be crazy, and I'm super-psyched. They estimate about 100,000 people coming to town, and the stadium only holds a little over 70,000. The rest are here to tailgate. Fifteen of them will be in my yard: I've booked a Hawkeye RV to park in my driveway. None of them have tickets, but they have a satellite television. We'll see how this goes.

And! I might get to meet a certain well-known person tomorrow. Post, and hopefully a picture [crosses fingers] to come tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Emily needs a new post, but I have very little to talk about. I put the rest of the lasagna in the freezer. I may bring some of it out next week.

I'm a little nervous about being cash-tight right now: with the unexpected expenses of the truck and the fridge and loaning a friend $1500 (I know you're not supposed to loan money to friends, but I couldn't NOT, and we've got a repayment plan), my short-term savings is looking paltry. I just hope I don't run into any more unexpected expenses before I can build it up again! I just need to stop spending money, right?

Parking money will help, too. This weekend is the big Iowa State game, and I'll probably be able to get a couple hundred. After last week's nail biter against Syracuse, the outcome of the game is in serious question. Tickets are like hen's teeth, and the scalpers will probably charge an arm and a leg. I'm hoping Lew will come down anyway...I miss the kid.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

I spent several hours Monday evening making vegetarian lasagna. I've never done a vegetarian lasagna before, so I threw in whatever sounded good: fresh tomatos, mushrooms, spinach, tofu, ricotta and mozzerella cheeses and artichokes. I think the last item might have been a mistake.

I have never cooked an artichoke before, so I did my research, figured out how to cook it and how to get the edibles out of it. All went well, but I think adding it to the lasagna was a mistake. The flavor of the artichoke completely overwhelms the taste of the dish. Very not subtle.

So now the whole dish is a little ruined for me. It's very good, but it's not something I can eat day after day, which I need to do if I don't want it to go to waste. I need to pawn off half a pan of what is essentially artichoke lasagna. Maybe I can bring it to work...there's a couple vegetarians around here that might like it. Chalk one up to cooking experiments gone wrong! Or more like, gone not so right.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Another football game, another sunburn. I remembered the sunscreen, I did! I just didn't remember it after I changed from jeans into shorts. My lap is a bright pink.

Nothing like the start of football season, though. My seat is awesome - 25th yardline, 24 rows up - and the people sitting around me hold promise. The stadium renovations look awesome, and I'm loving my extra two inches of butt room. The team's looking pretty good, too.

Go Hawkeyes!

Friday, September 01, 2006

My first fan obsession was with Darkwing Duck. My lovely sister bought me the DVDs for my birthday and they finally came today. I just finished watching the pilot episode, and nostalgia prompted me to open The Box.

Now when I say "obsessed", you need to read that as "fanatical to the point of extremism". I taped every show. It started at four o'clock in the afternoon, and I had to run up the driveway after I got off the bus in order to set up my tape properly. These tapes are in The Box. If there was a Darkwing Product, I had to have it. There are books, comics, action figures, figurines, handheld games, puzzles, a watch, cereal prizes, a fanny pack, valentines, a replica gun that shoots bubbles, newspaper clippings, stickers. We didn't eat out very often, but I begged my parents to take me to Pizza Hut, because they had a Darkwing Duck special, and the box from my personal pan pizza is in The Box, because it has Darkwing Duck on the lid.

I watched the shows over and over. I wrote down every quip, every alliteration, and every variation of "I am the terror that flaps in the night" in my notebook. I drew the characters. Also in my notebook is a very elaborate review of the show, written in cut and pasted newspaper clippings, like those movie ransom notes: "'Darkwing Duck' is the best cartoon since 'Ducktales.' I love it! It has wonderful and interesting caracters [sic]. The protaginist is witty and never fails to make me laugh. His (Darkwing Duck's) sidekick, Launchpad, is better as Darkwing's sidekick than Scrooge's. Gosalyn is a bouncy girl with an attitude. I can't say enough about this wonderful and enlightening show. I try to watch it every day, and when I do, I am rarely disappointed. My personal favorite is 'Negaduck.' My favorite character is Launchpad, because I think he's really funny. All of the villans are so stupid, Darkwing usually has nothing to fear, though Negaduck usually poses a problem. When there's trouble you call DW!"

My favorite character was Lauchpad actually because I had a crush on him. For a cartoon duck, he was pretty cute. I wrote my first fanfic about this show, which is unfortunately not in my notebook, but I remember it was mostly about indulging my crush. :) I was Darkwing Duck for Halloween that year, and the feet and the bill/mask are also in The Box. The hat is somewhere in my house, I think. It was too big to fit in The Box.

I believe I was in the sixth grade at this time, and just starting to care about being popular, which I wasn't, and friends, which I didn't have. I filled the void with Darkwing Duck. Whether it was helpful, emotionally, or not, my attachment still gives me a small sense of security.

By the way, Em, "Twin Beaks" is not in this collection. Maybe the next one...

"Zeke...get the diesel fuel"