Monthly Archives: June 2011

Every tower a source of power!

Last weekend, at the Midwest Renewable Energy Fair, I saw a couple of radio towers serving as wind turbines (like the one pictured above) and thought, ‘Well, that makes sense.’ There are already so many towers all over the world. Why not use them as sources of electricity?

I’ve been chanting, ‘Every tower a source of power!’* in my head for almost a week now. Maybe it’ll catch on, and we won’t have to deal with the aftereffects of nuclear energy ever again…

*In case you were wondering, I did come up with that myself and do feel very clever.


Update on the toilet

Below, a lovely letter from our landlord regarding our clogged toilet (we have two, luckily).

Folks: we have never had a situation where  the toilet had an object in it that needed the toilet to be entirely removed from the floor to set it to rights. If it is your fault, it is your bill!

[The plumber] will come, remove the toilet from the floor and try and find what the obstacle is. If someone dropped a toothbrush in the john, or a tampon, or a hairbrush and was just too delicate to stick her hand in to pull it out, that is not good. 


 Oh boy. Thankfully, my wonderful housemate Hallie is willing to pay for it. I think I speak for all of us when I say we are very, very excited to find out what is in there.

And just to clarify, she was not too delicate to take out the toilet-clogging item. She just dropped something in while the toilet was flushing (without seeing what it was and obviously without the ability to halt the toilet mid-flush) because sometimes she is a whirlwind and those things just happen. She tried really, really hard to get the mystery item out with a plunger and is not too dainty for anything.

Scenes from the weekend

Word play!

Buttermilk biscuit with honey butter made by my s.o. (hereafter known as Devin)

The world in Technicolor, brought to you by flowers.

My first hot air balloon!

Carrie Bradshaw would have a picnic (read: existential crisis) with this sign.

I found it outside this ferris wheel!

I declare this the world’s most beautiful bike shop. I mean, the lighting? I swoon!

And it has folding bikes.

They let me test ride one. If I bought it on credit and joined a circus, how long do you think it would take me to pay back the $2,000?


Overheard at Diversity Training

‘Race is like…the brand of pop, and ethnicity is like the specific flavor.’
-said by a trainee, not the trainer

Overheard in My House

‘I think I just flushed the toothpaste down the toilet…’
-said by my housemate

(We still don’t know what the mystery item is, but our toilet remains decidedly clogged. I’m thinking we should all place bets. Interestingly, I took inventory of all the things in the bathroom, and the only thing I couldn’t find was my giant bottle of mouthwash. Make of that what you will.)

In my summer bag

A custom-made pannier from the maker of

Instead of a purse, I have been opting to carry my convertible backpack around with me. As you can sort of tell from the picture, it clips to my bike (see it now?) and has straps like seat belts (you can’t really tell from the picture, so just imagine).

Here is the stuff I’ve been toting around in there.

MacBook Air, 'No one belongs here more than you' by Miranda July, 'Ordinary People' by Judith Guest, 'rose' by inga muscio, and marionberry lip balm from

I got the computer for graduation and haven’t been able to leave it home since. I feel like it is a perfect-and-fragile sliver of technology that has been bestowed unto me, that I must keep close to me at all times in case a brilliant blog post should occur to me or a gust of wind should blow. Mostly the latter.

The day after graduation I looked around and grabbed every book I wanted to read. It was glorious! I ended up with ten books in my backpack and feeling like the world’s most powerful pleasure reader…for two days. After that I realized that carrying around pounds of books was really not that different from being in school. Also, I lost one of them (Girls to the Front, which is so good. I saw the author do a reading of it, and she does the best Kathleen Hanna impression, no lie) and realized I couldn’t keep up with that many books at a time.

I narrowed it down to three.

Nobody belongs here more than you just happens to be the first book I read after graduating from high school. Weird. It’s a collection of short stories. Miranda July is a comedic genius, but I hesitate to say that because the stories are not really ha-ha funny; they’ll probably make you sad. Actually, you’ve probably already read them so you know whatever. I like reading them on the bus because somehow they are always the perfect length, and I have never missed my stop.

I took Ordinary People off the shelf because I thought it was made into a movie starring Ellen Page and Sarah Jessica Parker, and isn’t reading a novel then watching its movie adaptation the summeriest thing ever? Being able to partake of both suggests copious amounts of freeee tiiiiime. Turns out the Ellen Page SJP movie is Smart as opposed to Ordinary. However, this book has been adapted into a movie—-an Oscar-winning film directed by Robert Redford. I hear Mary Tyler Moore is one of the protagonists! Am I  the only twenty-two year-old who aspires to be MTM? I hope not. MTM > SJP! I finished the book last night and deem it an enjoyable read that uses exclamation marks in a 70s fashion. I can’t wait to see how this translates to the screen! It is likely terrible! But it won an Oscar! Oh, who knows!  (Like that.)

And finally, rose by inga muscio. I first encountered this book when I helped bring her to speak at my school last year. She read aloud from it; my heart swelled. I started reading the book itself over winter break (after giving it to my significant other who let me borrow it after he was done), but then school started. I haven’t really re-started reading it, so I can’t say anything particularly specific about it, which is totally apt considering its subject matter. It is about passive violence in our society + the rest of the world and how to break the cycle. I’m excited to continue reading it and will likely post a quote from it sometime soon because I don’t think I can do it justice any other way.

The other thing you see pictured is my new tube of marionberry lip balm. The internet does not even recognize ‘marionberry’ as a word and that is because marionberries are like the designer purse dogs of the berry world. The marionberry was invented at Oregon State University. Since I am leaving Portland for good at the end of the summer, I figure I should cultivate some nostalgia for this  Oregon staple. From what I know, it is either a blackberry/raspberry hybrid or a hybrid of two types of blackberries. Regardless, there is not much difference taste-wise between itself and the blackberry except that it has an Old Hollywood name, and I have only been able to find marionberry jam at the airport.