Moving on What do you want?: Moving on

By Spider on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 09:52 am:

    Last night, I saw "I Capture the Castle" at a local movie theatre. It's about love and compromise and writing and finding yourself, and it was just the kick in the pants I needed.

    I started sniffling as I walked to my car, and I started bawling once I shut the car door, and I cried "wee wee wee" all the way home. I knew I could not stay here another year, and I felt like I couldn't leave either.

    I don't know if I've mentioned this, but I have a baker's cyst on my right thumb that's growing and painful, and I need to have surgery on it soon or I won't be able to write by hand any more. I have excellent health insurance and a great doctor here, so I felt like I couldn't leave before dealing with my thumb. I thought I'd just renew my lease for a year, and then I'd have the year to take care of the surgery.

    But no. I can't do it.

    This is the plan: I will switch to a month-to-month lease starting in September. I will get my thumb looked at in August, hopefully operated on in September. I'm aiming for the end of October as my last days in this area. I'll look for a job in my home town, temping if I have to, and I'll live with my dad for a month at most, until I find a new place. My brother moved out of a livable apartment in the area a few months ago, for which he was paying $250/month, which warms my heart -- it will be so nice to move back to a region with a decent cost of living.

    Today I have to call my apartment manager to see about switching to the monthly lease thing. Cross your fingers for me, that this is allowed.

By semillama on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 09:59 am:

    Go for it spider. Are you talking about the Philly area?

By Spider on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 10:17 am:

    Thanks, Sem. Yeah, at least at first. The West is calling to me, but I don't want to move to a new place sight unseen. I was thinking of taking a few weeks after I quit to travel around the Montana/Idaho/Washington/Oregon chunk of the country to see if I'd like to live there.

By Spider on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 11:08 am:

    I just called my building manager -- if I don't sign the yearly lease, I'll automaticall roll over into the month-to-month basis. I just have to give them 30 days' notice when I want to leave.

    I called my parents to tell them I'm going to move in the Fall.

    I feel so liberated!!

By TBone on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 11:43 am:

    Rock out, Spider.
    Congratulations on the gift of momentum. I'm sure you won't regret it.

    Let me know when you take your tour through here and I'll show you around the Miz.
    Cost of living is great 'round here, but unfortunately I can't suggest MT in terms of jobs. We actually have fewer jobs this year than last by a little bit. Like everything else, I'm sure we have our beloved Governor Judy Martz to blame. "Our governor is dumber than your governor" bumper stickers are very popular right now.

By patrick on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 12:13 pm:

    so who's playing your pop's basement in the month of october? anyone cool?

    where abouts in PA will you go again?

    whats a bakers cyst?

By Spider on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 12:31 pm:

    Not that I know of. They're usually unsigned local bands that I've never heard of.

    Southeastern PA -- West Chester, to be specific. At least for a little while.

    A baker's cyst, also called a synovial cyst or ganglion cyst, is a little pocket that forms on your joints (usually behind the knee or on the outside of the wrist) that fills with the synovial fluid that lubricates the joint. The ones on the wrists are sometimes called "bible cysts" because they used to be gotten rid of by smacking them really hard with a bible. (And I can tell you from the amount of pain I have when I just bump my thumb against something that those poor people must have passed out or gone into shock after that. Holy moly!)

By patrick on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 12:53 pm:

    last night i watched a really awesome program on the elephant man, the curse of the elephant man
    on discovery health channel (god damn i love direct tv and all its subject specific channels)

    the premise of the program was to follow joesph merrick's family tree to see if there was any possibility of his condition reoccuring.

    of course they still don't know exactly what caused his deformities. They had two ideas, Proteus Syndrome, or Neurofibromatosis. One being abnormal growth on the bones and tissue, the other being the growth of tumors on muscle tissue.

    they found many of his decendants in London. tested their DNA along with DNA taken from Merrick's skeleton.

    I think the conclusion was they were all in the clear, but it was a fascinating program about the attempts to treat him, the studies in geneticism and mutations that causes these two ailments and the ultra super duper rare possibility that Merrick suffered from BOTH disorders, as you can find flaws with each diagnosis.

    Hearing your bakers wart description made me think of this.

By heather on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 12:54 pm:

    a guy i worked with had what must have been
    one of those on his wrist

    it was the size of a quarter [if a quarter was a

    it looked really inconvenient and a little freaky
    and i wondered why he didn't have it removed
    so i thought that maybe it couldn't be.

By agatha on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 01:10 pm:

    I used to have one of those, it was huge. One day, it just disappeared. No, I didn't smack it with a dictionary.

    I'm so proud of you, Spidey-cat. Let me know if you come to Washington, We'll show you a real good time.

By Spider on Thursday, July 31, 2003 - 01:42 pm:

    Thanks, Agatha!

    Baker's cysts aren't always painful or in the way. Sometimes they go away on their own, too. My aunt had one on each wrist when she was younger and they went away in a couple of years.

By Spider on Friday, August 1, 2003 - 03:19 pm:

    I've told my boss-in-everything-but-name and one of my coworkers that I'm leaving in the fall. Haven't told real boss yet but I will in the coming weeks. Boss-i-e-b-n was disappointed that I wouldn't be staying and mentioned a supervisory position he thought I'd be good at, but then he said, "don't let yourself be seduced," so I'm taking that as meaning he knows I'm serious about leaving. I am, too. I told him about wanting to move out of the business world entirely and maybe go back to school to study church history. So he knows it's not just a change of daily scenery I want but a whole change of life.

    He also told me not to feel guilty about leaving or responsible for the person who comes after me. That was nice to hear. I don't feel guilty, really, but I do want to make sure I leave everything as clean and easy to understand as possible.

    I also told him that I hadn't told Real Boss yet, and that I didn't want the news spread around. I hope I didn't do anything stupid by telling two people before telling Real Boss.

By semillama on Friday, August 1, 2003 - 03:27 pm:

    tell Real Boss soon. Get biabn's permission to use him as a reference. That's important.

By Spider on Friday, August 1, 2003 - 03:41 pm:

    Good point...I will.

    For some reason, I'm really nervous about telling my real boss. She's a lovely person who has always been very good and friendly to me, so I don't know why I feel so anxious when I think about it. Maybe because once I tell her, it's For Real. I'm going to tell her on Monday.

    Wish me luck.

By Spider on Friday, August 1, 2003 - 04:27 pm:

    I just told my real boss! She was disappointed at first, too, but then was really cool about it. She appreciated the advance notice....I told her I'd leave no sooner than the end of October. I'm thinking it might be a little later than that, but I don't know yet. I'll have to see how the hand surgery thing goes.

    What a relief. It's funny how quickly stomach butterflies can dissipate.

By semillama on Friday, August 1, 2003 - 05:35 pm:

    get her to give you a reference too.

By Spider on Wednesday, August 13, 2003 - 12:54 pm:

    Hal and TBone, does your area have a weekly newspaper that's available online?

By TBone on Wednesday, August 13, 2003 - 01:23 pm:

By Spider on Wednesday, August 13, 2003 - 01:26 pm:


By Hal on Wednesday, August 13, 2003 - 07:57 pm:

    What he said.... Although for trying to be a liberal newspaper, they kinda over do it sometimes. I only read the Independent when I need info on Show's in town or what have you. I think their editors went off the deep end years ago, mostly because I know they are all alcoholics.

    How do I know they are all alcoholics you ask?
    I'm their fuckin bartender.

By Spider on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 03:27 pm:

    I have officially given notice -- my last day at this office will be December 23.

By Lapis on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 03:39 pm:


    Yay Spider!

By Spider on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 03:47 pm:

    Thanks, girl!

    (Now I just have to quell the inner voices that tell me I'm a complete moron for quitting in the middle of a job crisis.)

By spunky on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 03:59 pm:

    Way to go, spidey!

    I too am moving on. I am leaving the hotel in about 15 minutes with a truck loaded to the gills, and in 16 hours will be in eri's arms!

    I have interviews on Monday and Tuesday, both NON-CLASSIFIED! I am going to be so glad to be out from under the shadow of a security clearance!
    Eri and I are going to start looking for a house to lease in January, probably northern san antonio.
    The further north the better.

    Well, I guess I will talk to you all from my home pc tomorrow, if I wake up that is.

By patrick on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 04:04 pm:

    drive safe.

    spider, what will you do afterwards? did i miss you outlaying your plans for the future?

By Spider on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 04:16 pm:

    Well, I don't know if I'll actually *follow through* on the plans, but the ideal is to work just as a temp or whatever until the Fall, at which point I will ship off to parts yet unknown for grad school, and I'd like to study Irish history or Irish cultural studies or peace and conflict studies.

    I would love to do my thesis on the social history of Free Derry, which was a section of Derry City in Northern Ireland that declared itself, well, free from British rule and barricaded its streets to keep the army and the police out.

By sarah on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 04:22 pm:

    wow! congrats spider!! i knew you wanted out, but i didn't think you were actually thinking of quitting. good for you.

By Antigone on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 05:19 pm:


    Movin' on is kewl.


By Spider on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 05:25 pm:

    Thanks for the support! I need it! :)

    (So, do any of you think I am a complete moron for quitting during a job crisis?)

By kazu on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 05:29 pm:


    I am so excited for you. I can't wait until you are in school and we can vent to each other!

By patrick on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 05:47 pm:

    "So, do any of you think I am a complete moron for quitting during a job crisis?"

    no way. absolutely not.

By eri on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 05:48 pm:

    Hang on now...if we're staying in SA, then I can work on my plans as well and will hopefully soon be a student along side both of you.....

    But I will probably be asking Sem for advice when I get back into school.

By semillama on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 05:59 pm:

    what, you thinking of becoming an archaeologist? well, that's one job they can't outsource. Texas A & M has a great underwater archaeology program, if you are interested in that sort of thing.

By eri on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 06:38 pm:

    I was leaning toward geology but haven't totally made up my mind yet......

By Lapis on Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 10:54 pm:

    Hey Spider, if you want to study in Portland, I might be moving to a house soon. Two bedrooms, a basement and a cat, possibly even my piano if there's room. I'm going to find out more about it tonight.

By The Watcher on Friday, November 21, 2003 - 02:31 pm:


    I just hope you have enough money to support yourself. Otherwise, I say good for you.

By Spider on Monday, December 22, 2003 - 04:25 pm:

    So tomorrow's my last day. The Big Boss stopped by this morning and said that if I ever found myself in need of a job in the years down the line, I should talk to him. I thought that was pretty dang nice.

    I'm really leaning towards joining the Jesuit Volunteer Corps for a year. There's an opening for a teaching assistant/catechist on an Indian reservation in central Washington that's looking good to me at the moment. I think it would be a great experience to volunteer and live in a volunteer community for a year, and I did want to move to the Northwest...

    I'm kinda nervous about saying goodbye to everyone tomorrow. I hope I don't cry. My boss and the other head of customer service are taking me out to lunch tomorrow, so that might ease the goodbye with them.

    But I have Christmas to look forward to, and I'm seeing "The Taming of the Shrew" at the Kennedy Centre with my mom on Dec. 28 as my Xmas present. That's one of my favorite Shakespearean plays, and the reviews say the production is more melancholy than usual...should be interesting.

    Then I'm going to Boston for New Year's.

    Then I might drive across the country with two of my friends and see the house my mom grew up in in Lincoln, Nebraska.

    I just have to get through today and tomorrow.

By dave. on Monday, December 22, 2003 - 04:41 pm:

    which reservation?

By Spider on Monday, December 22, 2003 - 04:49 pm:

    The Colville Reservation...the position is in the Paschal Sherman Indian School in Omak.

By dave. on Monday, December 22, 2003 - 06:10 pm:

    wow. that's out in the middle of cultural nowhere. lots of beautiful places nearby, like grand coulee, the north cascades, lake chelan. hwy 97 goes way up into canada and down through bend, oregon to weed, california. one of these days, i'm gonna take a vacation on hwy 97.

By dave. on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 01:15 pm:

    so, are you offline after today?

By Spider on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 01:26 pm:

    Fortunately, my dad has a high-speed connection at home. Whew!

    The JVC requires you to be emotionally stable (says so on their website). Think they'll reject me?

By dave. on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 01:40 pm:

    heck no.

    i do have a friend who works as a teacher at a tribal school and from the way she talks, it's no cakewalk. there's a lot of apathy. but this is in an urban setting. it may be different out in the boonies.

By Antigone on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 02:13 pm:

    When they say "emotionally stable" they usually mean "not eating lead paint off the walls."

    I think you'll qualify.

By Spider on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 02:58 pm:


    I hope it's different in the boonies.

    I can deal with apathy, but I would have a hard time dealing with aggressive or hostile behavior. I cry too easily.

    My friend Claire, who's in JVC, was a badass in high school, so it's no surprise to me that she took so well to dealing with runaway teens. Her fellow JV roommate (whom I met in October), though, is extremely soft-spoken and delicate-flower-like, and she volunteers as a teacher's aide at a Catholic school in Salem, and she loves it. So I figure if she can do it, so can I.

By Lapis on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 03:04 pm:

    Do it. It sound like a Good for Spider thing.

    It really is beautiful up there. Take a camera and lots to read.

By Spider on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 09:02 pm:

    All my anxiety was for naught, as usual. I had a very nice last day. My two bosses took me out for lunch, and we had a pleasant, non-awkward conversation. My direct boss had remembered I was into Irish literature and gave me Flann O'Brien's "At Swim-Two Birds" as a going-away present, which I thought was thoughtful and nice of him. He also offered to write me a recommendation for JVC -- yay!

    Then I said goodbye, and there was no awkwardness at all! I can't tell you what a relief that was.

    Now I don't know what to do with myself. I feel like there's something I should be doing...but what could it be?

By dave. on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 09:05 pm:

    treat yourself to dinner at your favorite restaurant.

    sleep in tomorrow.

By Spider on Tuesday, December 23, 2003 - 09:23 pm:

    I think I'll do that...

    ...and tonight I'll download all the songs by all the bands I've been meaning to hear.

    First up, British Sea Power.

By The Watcher on Wednesday, December 24, 2003 - 12:50 pm:

    Talk about culture shock!

    Good luck Spider it's a shame you'll be moving so far away. If you decide to do that.

By agatha on Sunday, December 28, 2003 - 03:42 pm:

    You WILL visit us if you are living up this way, Spidey. I am really excited for you.

By c on Tuesday, December 30, 2003 - 03:03 am:

    They don't look too apathetic:

    Oh, hon. Omak really is the middle of nowhere. Check out these news headlines from the lastest issues of The Chronicle (

    Eagles offer holiday dinner
    Website address changed for Fish and Wildlife
    Students enjoy decorating Christmas cookies
    Mitchells return home for holidays

    Maybe you'll probably love it, though. I've always loved my trips to central and eastern Washington.

    Will you have a car? I'm sad to see that it's 255 miles from Seattle on Greyhound, an 8-hour-plus ride. (11-14 hours to Olympia, with a transfer in Seattle.) 4 hours, 45 minutes in a car.

    If you can't get out west, then maybe Agatha and I will need to go visit you, after the thaw.

By kazu on Monday, January 19, 2004 - 01:14 pm:

    Spider, I've been meaning to ask you...did you finish *At Swim - Two Birds*? I bought that last year and started it. I liked the writing, but never got around to finishing it since I started reading something by Vlad Nab and he won even though I didn't finish that one either before the semester started. That often happens. However, this year I managed to finish two novels over break. The first was, "In the time of the butterflies" by Julia Alvarez which I read because I'm doing a presentation on it this semester and then "The Adventures of Augie March" which in typical Bellow fashion started off kind of slow but eventually pulled me right in.

    Anyway, how did you like O'Brien?

By Spider on Monday, January 19, 2004 - 02:50 pm:

    I'm LOVING O'Brien, but I'm only on page 122 because I'm reading about 8 other things at the same time. But this is one of the funniest books I've ever read. The style is so cute. "Result of overt act mentioned: uproar and disorder." Hehehe. I don't want to skip a single sentence because I never know what kind of joke or clever thing will come next.

    I'm such a dork -- I get a thrill every time I pick up on something making fun of old Irish literature such as you'd find in the Celtic Miscellany, like 10 adjectives used to describe something, or a list of the 30 types of birds that live in a particular hedge. Or Finn MacCool's frequent mentions of chess and melodious Irish.

    I wish this were made into an audiobook.

By semillama on Monday, January 19, 2004 - 07:33 pm:

    who do you envision reading it?

By Spider on Monday, January 19, 2004 - 07:47 pm:

    Maybe somebody like Jimmy Nesbitt. I can't tell where the novel is set (but it's not Dublin, from certain clues) so I don't know what kind of accent the narrator should have.

By spunky on Monday, February 2, 2004 - 07:47 pm:

    I got a Job!
    PC/LAN Administrator for KCI.
    I start Monday the 9th!

By heather on Tuesday, February 3, 2004 - 12:14 am:


    it hasn't really seemed very long

    but congratulations!!!

    i hope it treats you well

    yesterday i was out of work for exactly a month. still am. i sent out two things and i've been to 3 interviews. didn't feel ready to interview but did it anyway. both say i might have a job in a few weeks. my parents would say that i should make getting a job my full time job, but i'm betting on enlightenment instead.

By J on Tuesday, February 3, 2004 - 12:42 am:

    Good for you Spunky:) Congrats!

By Spider on Tuesday, February 3, 2004 - 09:45 am:

    Heather, have you thought about temping? You don't have to go to interviews and you set your own minimum wage.

By sarah on Tuesday, February 3, 2004 - 03:02 pm:

    congrats spunk!

By semillama on Tuesday, February 3, 2004 - 05:02 pm:

    Spunk, are you talking about KCI Technologies, Inc?

By kazu on Tuesday, February 3, 2004 - 05:09 pm:

    Good job Spunkem

By spunky on Wednesday, February 4, 2004 - 08:44 am:

    Thanks Guys.
    It is a Medical Supply Company that makes hospital beds and stuff like that.
    Kinetic Concepts Inc.

    I really was not unemployed long compared to others, but it seemed like forever to me...

    BTW, I had to fly out to KC yesterday to take, ahem, tie up some loose ends. I had a lay offer in DFW (Tiggyland), and for some really odd reason, Delta flew me back to SA via Atlanta (Sem and KazooLand). DAMN was the WHOLE country cold yesterday or what?

By spunky on Wednesday, February 4, 2004 - 08:45 am:

    Lay Over.

    Sorry, I am so tired. I just got in two hours ago...

By semillama on Wednesday, February 4, 2004 - 09:51 am:

    Sem land is currently Ohio.

    i think it just cracked 20 degrees for the first time in a month in my home town.

By Skooter on Wednesday, February 4, 2004 - 03:37 pm:

    Yep. It was 29 for a whole day. We're at 34 days of consecutive snowfall. One more breaks the record for the past 50 years or so.
    I'm depressed, my car don't like the cold either. It's dark and windy, we see the sun about once a week if we are lucky.

By kazu on Wednesday, February 4, 2004 - 04:51 pm:

    It's cold in Boston, which is where I am headed tomorrow.

    My nana is in heaven now.

By patrick on Wednesday, February 4, 2004 - 05:27 pm:

    glad to hear your employeed spunk.

    sorry about your nana kazooey.

    my grandfather is still in sleepyland. no guarantee he will wake up.

    its a blistering sunny 70 degrees here today.

By spunky on Wednesday, February 4, 2004 - 09:36 pm:

    We made it to 53 today, with rain.

    Sorry to hear about your loss, Kazoo.

    Thanks guys. I had to take my physical today, and actually passed!

By J on Thursday, February 5, 2004 - 12:17 am:

    I'm so sorry Kazu,remember her.

By patrick on Thursday, February 5, 2004 - 12:28 pm:


    since when is a physical required to sit on your ass and work on a computer?

By dave. on Thursday, February 5, 2004 - 01:02 pm:

    it's a long walk back and forth to the smoking area.

    looking busy is almost as rigorous as being busy, patrick.

By semillama on Thursday, February 5, 2004 - 01:41 pm:

    I bet it's an insurance requirement. Gotta find out if there's any "pre-existing conditions" that will disqualify spunky and save the company some dough...

By spunky on Thursday, February 5, 2004 - 03:59 pm:

    Well, I am actually going to be lifting hundred thousand dollars servers into racks as well as setting on my ass in front of a monitor, so I can understand.

    And yes, I am sure it has to do with the insurance too.

By kazu on Thursday, February 5, 2004 - 05:37 pm:

    thanks guys.

By semillama on Thursday, February 5, 2004 - 07:12 pm:

    I KNEW it had to do with money....

By Dougie on Thursday, February 5, 2004 - 07:22 pm:

    I'm very sorry for you loss, kazu.

    Congrats Spunky.

By wisper on Thursday, February 5, 2004 - 09:32 pm:

    "looking busy is almost as rigorous as being busy, patrick."

    hells yeah.

    i need a new shitty job. The current one is getting too shitty. Time to leave.
    Actually, i just really want to be unemployed again. That was so relaxing. Such a great time.

    Live it up, heather, Nate and Spider!

By Spider on Friday, February 27, 2004 - 11:56 am:

    I FINALLY completed my application to the Jesuit Volunteer Corps and will be mailing it today.

    There's no real deadline, but they give priority to applications received by March 1.

    Yes, in my self-evaluation, I admitted to procrastinating.

    Let's hope the express mail can get my envelope from PA to OR overnight.

    I won't relax until I get back from the post office.

By semillama on Friday, February 27, 2004 - 12:35 pm:

    The Jesuit Volunteer Corps?

By Spider on Friday, February 27, 2004 - 01:04 pm:

    Yeah, read upthread.

By dave. on Friday, February 27, 2004 - 01:10 pm:

    cool. are you still looking at colville?

By Spider on Friday, February 27, 2004 - 02:00 pm:

    Yep, I asked for that position specifically. I also asked to be considered for other postings in the education, children's services, and physically/developmentally handicapped fields. I applied only to the Northwest US division.

    And I just mailed the application! It should be there tomorrow by noon.

By semillama on Friday, February 27, 2004 - 02:07 pm:

    neat. I just finished reading a bit about genocidal US policies and their effect in the Pacific Northwest. It's in a book by Ward Churchill called "A Little Matter of Genocide" and it should be required reading for all those people who brag about what a glorious and righteous country this is and that it's always been that way. It should also be required reading for those who support the claim that the Holocaust was a unique event and the only actualy genocidal event.

    I'll talk about it in another thread when I read more (I just got to the part where he explains how groups of private citizens in California got together and volunteered money to pay for scalp bounties, and how in the Southwest, a lot of times the bounty hunters would just cross the border into Mexico and slaughter Mexicans, since the state officials payign the bounty for scalps couldn't tell the difference between Indian and Mexican scalps (or those of men, women and children for that matter - not that anyone really was against slaughtering Indian children a hundred-odd years ago).

By Spider on Friday, February 27, 2004 - 02:12 pm:

    That sounds fascinating. I'll recommend it to my mother (her grad program is focused on genocide around the world, though with an emphasis in the Holocaust).

By semillama on Friday, February 27, 2004 - 02:44 pm:

    Yeah, Churchill basically rips Stephen Katz a new one throughout. The more I read about what our founding fathers did, the more disgusted I get.

    Anyway, there are interesting parallels between Nazi policy towards the people they attempted genocide on (not just the Jews, but Gypsies and Slavs - in fact Churchill makes a good arguement for stating the total victim count of the Holocaust at 26 million people dead as a result of Nazi policy) and the policies of New World European governments towards Native peoples. The big difference is that someone stopped the Nazis before he could succeed.

By J on Friday, February 27, 2004 - 04:43 pm:

    You all know I think Mormons are evil,I just read this book called American Massacre that just blew me away.Mormons wiped out a whole party of 140 people (sparing 17 children),slaughtered like lambs,robbed,stripped of even their clothes and left to rot.I had no idea that at one time Brigam Young had his own army.Our goverment even helped cover up the massacre because they were afraid of a civil war with the mormons.Facinating!

By semillama on Friday, February 27, 2004 - 06:22 pm:

    Massacres and brutality were the standard in warfare by both professional soldiers and civilian milita in the United States until the twentieth century.

By j on Saturday, February 28, 2004 - 02:36 am:

    my friend JL's relatives were involved in the mountain meadows massacre. on the killing side.

    he and his wife have a pioneer day party every july. last time I won the jello contest. I brought a cake in the shape of utah with blue raspberry jello as the salt lake. I decorated it with a wedding cake groom figure and 29 brides.

    I won a mormon tabernacle choir box set.

By c on Saturday, February 28, 2004 - 02:40 am:

    I love winning.

    my team won $93 at trivia tuesday night.

    I also won a trivia contest prize at duran duran covers night.

    I kept hoping they would ask something truly obscure, like who played sax on rio, but I ended up winning on a dumb question, what was duran duran's real name in barbarella (durand durand).

By Spider on Thursday, March 18, 2004 - 07:59 pm:

    I got into JVC!

    I had my phone interview yesterday, and a few minutes ago, the director called me to say I had been accepted.

    Now I just have to be placed in a position. When I received the full list of job placements, I rethought my choice of the Indian School in Omak -- they prefer someone with teaching experience, which I don't have. But I found myself drawn to the positions at the L'Arche communities in Seattle and Tacoma -- they involve working with physically and developmentally disabled people, doing lots of craft and gardening projects. That's neat. And it's even neater that the area director was thinking of one of those positions for me, in Tacoma, before I had even told him I was interested.

    I liked Tacoma when I visited there this October with my brother. It had a nice grimy feel to it, like Philly but much smaller. :)

    I'll have my phone interview with L'Arche next week, and then both they and I will have to decide whether that's the right place for me.

By kazu on Thursday, March 18, 2004 - 08:00 pm:

    Yay! Spider, I am so happy have for you!!!

By Lapis on Thursday, March 18, 2004 - 08:24 pm:

    Whoohoo! Yay Spider! You are cool and rad and we'll be lucky to have you on the left coast.

    Will you visit me at my new house?

By patrick on Thursday, March 18, 2004 - 08:37 pm:

    what an exciting left turn your life is making. very very super spiderdude.

By TBone on Thursday, March 18, 2004 - 08:42 pm:


By Spider on Thursday, March 18, 2004 - 10:49 pm:

    Thanks, guys! I hope I'm up to the challenge.

By dave. on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 12:17 am:

    spider, opt for the seattle locations. the tacoma site is very close to where i grew up. ummm, it's loserville. the seattle sites are waaaaay better.

    also, i'm sort of concerned that this line of work is not something for you*.

    native american outreach, maybe. this -- naaaah.

    but, hey, you're still young and it's all about accumulating experiences.

    *the you that i think i know from what i see here on this site.

By semillama on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 09:54 am:

    I second the Seattle thing - at least live there. Avoid the Tacoma Aroma.

    It's been a while since I've been out there. I need to go back out and visit my friends there.

By Spider on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 10:10 am:

    Well, remember, the point of joining the JVC is not to have a good time but to provide service to the poor and marginalized members of society. That's why most of the areas of placement are places like rural Indian reservations and the hills of KY, and the ghettos of LA and Detroit and such. I'm not going to pick a job because of the potential night life in the area but because of the job itself.

By kazu on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 10:29 am:

    but with the stress that these jobs entail, it's okay (neccessary even) to be concerned about what kind of fun there is to have.

By patrick on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 12:35 pm:

    too bad you couldnt come work in the ghettos of LA. They need all the help they can get.

    actually you were in a dream of mine last night. i was on some sort of campus, going to some sort of lecture attended by tons of people. After it was over knowing you were there I looked at people i thought might be you and called them "Spider" until finally you head turned. We spoke. You had funny hair, funny as in like adult funny, not like pink with dreads or anything. You were dressed ery cosnervatively. I dont remember much after that. It was cordial though.

By Spider on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 01:36 pm:

    Crap, now I'm all filled with doubt. I don't know what I should do. The director who interviewed me will be on vacation until Tuesday, so I can't ask him for help or ask him to hold off on forwarding my resume to L'Arche. UGH.

By Antigone on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 01:46 pm:

    Being filled with doubt is good.

    Act anyway.

By patrick on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 01:49 pm:

    its not good you silly ass.

    but it is to be expected.

    act anyway.

By kazu on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 01:51 pm:

    I think I agree with dave. that I don't think those jobs would be the *best* use of your extensive talents, however, that doesn't mean you wouldn't do a great job if you are interested in them otherwise. I see you more as an educator myself, but if you don't have the experience then I don't know. But you may feel more suited to those other jobs if you are really looking for a change. What would be most satisfying? Not in a "feel good" kind of way, but in that way you are looking to stimulate whatever has been missing in your life thus far, which feels good...whatever. The point is, if you enjoy what you are doing, that should translate over into your ability...I think.

    I wish you could come here.

By patrick on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 02:00 pm:

    stepping stones.

    dont let dave or kazu's points sidetrack you even though they may be right.

    think of this as a stepping stone. this experience and work sounds like it could be invaluable experience and be a building block to something else.

    also the trans-continental relocation will be good for you as well.

By kazu on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 02:10 pm:

    And you never know what hidden talents and interests will emerge when you try something new.

By patrick on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 02:11 pm:

    ...and you might find your very own Senor Ballz.

By heather on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 03:52 pm:

    do what you were drawn to do. it's perfect.

    don't consider 'should's

    you can always leave if you're miserable

By Spider on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 04:10 pm:

    Well, I'll go through with the interview with L'Arche (sometime next week? they have to call me to set it up). I can learn then as much as I can about the job, and then I'll see if I feel a strong yes, no, or if I'm still uncertain.

    Because this is a faith-based volunteer organization, they place a strong emphasis on discernment, and they would much rather you say no if you don't believe you're right for the job than to say yes just to keep the peace. So I won't feel pressured to accept the job if it doesn't sound right to me.

    It's true I don't have teaching experience, but I do have experience with children in general (I have 8 younger cousins, and my best friend has little sisters, ages 8 and 12, whom I know very closely). I have *no* experience with the disabled.

    On the other hand, the organization thought I was better qualified to work at L'Arche than at the Indian School. Maybe I would be closing the door to a very enlightening and interesting opportunity if I decided not to work there just because my heart was set on another place.

    On the other other hand, I feel more at peace when I imagine working at the school, and that was the original position that inspired me to apply to the program in the first place. (I'm supposed to be discerning the will of God when I make my decision, so I'm trying to look for internal signs leading me to one position or the other. What I wouldn't give for a booming voice from the clouds giving me directions right now.)

    If I still have doubts after my interview, I can call the area director and let him know my difficulty. I'd call him now but he's on vacation until Tuesday.

    Ew, I squeezed too much lime in my diet Pepsi. Nastay.

By kazu on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 04:13 pm:

    do we have a patron saint for decision making? pray to him and flip a coin.

By Lapis on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 05:28 pm:

    Fountains. Find a fountain and pray and flip a coin.

    That's for wishes but you could wish for the best decision.

    The Portland JVC HQ is really close by, I pass by it every time I ride my bike to and from work.

    All in all, listen to both your doubts and dreams follow your heart to a spiderplace.

By semillama on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 05:44 pm:

    Send a dollar to "Bob". Can't hurt.

By Bob on Friday, March 19, 2004 - 06:05 pm:

    send ten dollars to "wisper". Can't hurt.

By Spider on Friday, March 26, 2004 - 02:38 pm:

    I interviewed with a guy at L'Arche in Tacoma on Wednesday. He was really friendly, and the community sounded like a neat place, but there were aspects about the job that didn't seem right for me. I think I could do it, but I also think I would be better suited to work in an educational setting with children.

    This has really thrown me for a loop. I don't know what's wrong with me but I feel very discombobulated and anxious.

    Anyway, a few minutes ago, I called my contact at JVC and told him I didn't feel comfortable taking the L'Arche job and I would like to be considered for the Indian School in Omak. He didn't sound very enthusiastic about my chances of getting it, but he said he and his staff would review my application again and call me next week.

    Please wish me luck.

By kazu on Friday, March 26, 2004 - 03:14 pm:

    Good luck lady.

By dave. on Friday, March 26, 2004 - 03:17 pm:

    good luck, spider. hey, i hope my remark didn't mess with your head. agatha thought it was inappropriate.

    and here i go again -- that is not a neat community. i know exactly where the place is, i looked it up on mapquest. it's in parkland, which is the armpit of tacoma. zoom out to 4 and look to the west. i grew up in that area between spanaway loop road and pacific ave. it's shitty and not even cool shitty like urban detroit or l.a. the people in parkland are there because a) they are in the military and/or b) they have no imagination, no curiosity. anyone with the slightest yearning for spiritual, cultural or personal development moved away as soon as they could.

    i know you're not going there to party and i know you are willing to make some cultural sacrifices. i'm telling you this because i think i'd feel worse by encouraging you to do this without telling you what i know about the area. i would never recommend that anybody move to parkland. have you seen gummo? if that movie were based in western wa, parkland or spanaway would be the perfect setting.

    seriously, try for seattle. or omak.

    ok? sorry.

By Spider on Friday, March 26, 2004 - 04:48 pm:

    No worries, Dave.

    I'm pissed at myself for getting distracted when I should have gone after the one job I wanted from the very beginning. I hope I didn't blow my chances of getting there. Now I just have to wait and see what happens, which is torturous.

    On a totally unrelated note, I just got Beyond Good and Evil for my Gamecube, and it's great -- check it out. I highly recommend it. Even though I'm stuck right now. Whatever.

By semillama on Friday, March 26, 2004 - 05:33 pm:

    Looks interesting. I'm on my second go-through with Knights of the Old Republic for my Xbox - I'm playing a scoundrel with a eye for profit but basically good at heart. It's a great game, takes about 45-50 hours to complete, but it's like a huge choose your own adventure, and there are different things available and different situations based on your character's gender and class, so there's a high replayability.

    I've been looking for a game that isn't star wars related that looks cool. I stay away from the games that require you to move with one thumbstick and aim with the other - i'm just nor coordinated enough!

By TBone on Friday, March 26, 2004 - 07:22 pm:

    I haven't had a console system since the original Nintendo (before that, Atari)
    But I've been tempted lately. Maybe a GameCube or PlayStation2.
    A PS2 wouldn't be bad, since my DVD player is a lying sack of shit.

By Lapis on Saturday, March 27, 2004 - 11:49 am:

    I got Beyond Good and Evil but it's not compatible with my graphics card. I like the install music though.

By Spider on Saturday, March 27, 2004 - 01:01 pm:

    The music is great. It does a really nice job at setting the atmosphere in each place you go, and a lot of it is genuinely pretty.

    The game has a cute and gentle sense of humor. FOr ex, there's a scene where you meet a sinister character, who's sitting in this big black Cadillac, and then the roof of the car opens and the guy floats out in this teeny tiny yellow hover-cab. It made me laugh out loud. :)

By kazu on Saturday, March 27, 2004 - 01:40 pm:

    Spider, I watched The Celebration last night. What a great movie. I was impressed by how, rather than just having a depressing movie with moments of comic relief, there was a near-perfect balance in the tension between the depressing narrative and the comic one. At first I thought the cinematography was kind of weak because the style seemed inconsistent, but upon thinking about it...what seemed like weakness I think actually framed the film nicely. The awkward hand-held shot at the beginning when Christian is walking down the road, the quick shots of Michael and his wife having sex, Helene reading the letter, and Pia in the bathtub, and some others I'd have to go through and watch again to describe...anyway, these help to break up all the stories (i.e. the tensions in all the relationships) so that the Big thing, while it retains a kind of primacy, doesn't really carry all the weight? Know what I mean?

    I have more to say about the characters but I have to think about it a bit.

By Spider on Saturday, March 27, 2004 - 04:44 pm:

    This is one of the Dogme films, so that's why the cinematography is so distinctive. I think the Dogme style (go here and click on "Manifesto" for the list of rules) is probably best realized with this film, because it's appropriate to the subject matter -- it makes the film look like a home movie.

    I love this movie, too. My favorite moment is when Helene reads the letter at night and there's a shot of Christian's face, and when you see him the gravity of his grief just descends on you all at once. His face is just perfect there.

    I know what you mean about how learning about the other characters' stories makes the movie more than just a Movie About X. The writing and the acting were so good that the characters' lives before and after the timeframe of the movie are easy to imagine. They seem like real people.

    How did you interpret the very brief shot of Michael tugging at his belt when his father is lying on the grass outside? I had a big argument (well, passionate discussion) with my friends about this when we watched the movie together.

By kazu on Saturday, March 27, 2004 - 05:39 pm:


    Michael tugging at his that right after the happy dancing scene, the mother runs in for help, Christian runs outside, then we see Michael tugging at his pants, and Christian pushes him away. Also, I thought this line was interesting, right before the dancing scene, Michael is saying, "It's me ringing the doorbell. Me, Michael man."

    I think it sets up a rape scenario. I don't think it in a kind of "Dude he's totally going to rape his dad!" But I wonder if the film sets up Michael as someone who is capable of doing that. I mean, we get a sense of what Michael is like when he's mad and it seems, while irrational and asshole-ish, normal. He's easily angered, but his anger style (for lack of a better word) is pretty consistent. However, with his father he's in a monstrous rage. I mean, he actually *sounds* like a monster when he yells. Even when he's just sitting there, just kind of talking at his dad, all heartbroken and sad, his voice is just so, so...wicked.

    Now, he's drunk and the reasons he's mad at his father are in no way comprable to why he was mad at his wife, his sister, and the Butler-like guy so that might account for the change in voice. But it could also signal a shift in his character and that he might actually *do* something monstrous. One thing is for sure, the way that he made him lie down, even when he was just talking to him, indicates that Michael really wanted him in a totally subordinate position.

    Anyway, those are my thoughts.

By Spider on Tuesday, March 30, 2004 - 06:44 pm:

    I just got a call from JVC...this is the new position they have recommended me for:

    READING CLINICIAN, St. Labre Indian School (Ashland, MT): St. Labre Indian School provides quality education that celebrates Catholic faith and embraces Native American cultures, primarily the Northern Cheyenne and Crow Tribes. The JV will work with a planned curriculum that gives children a fighting chance to learn to read, in the hope that they will have fewer special needs in the future. This position involves one-on-one intensive tutoring with children grades K-3 through a reading program that focuses on the special needs of each individual child. The reading clinician works with families to create an ongoing, ever-present support to the child. Qualifications: B.A. in education, language, or related field; training/experience in education; training/experience in reading; patience and desire to work with remedial students; willingness to deal with cultural diversity.

    This sounds SO COOL. I am really excited about this, and I hope to God they'll accept my B.A. in psychology as a related field. I'm thinking I could volunteer in my public library's adult literacy program in the meantime, to get substantive experience with teaching and reading. I have a lot of experience reading to kids, but I don't think that will be enough. :)

    And I don't care if Ashland, MT is in the middle of nowhere. I like middles of nowhere. And I see on the map it's right next to the Custer National Forest, so it's got to be a pretty area with lots of hiking opportunities in my free time.

By Spider on Tuesday, March 30, 2004 - 06:45 pm:

By dave. on Tuesday, March 30, 2004 - 06:52 pm:

    hey, that sounds totally cool. best of luck.

By Spider on Tuesday, March 30, 2004 - 06:57 pm:


By Spider on Tuesday, March 30, 2004 - 07:11 pm:

    Kazu, I hadn't seen your post up there. Dum.

    Anyway, your interpretation concurs with that of two of my friends', so I am inclined to think you guys are on to something. I was thinking that he was going to beat his dad with the belt or, um, pee on him.

    But, hey! you too are using the word monster to describe Michael. I think that someone on my couch actually squealed, "EW! Monster!" when Michael falls in the shower and bellows.

By kazu on Tuesday, March 30, 2004 - 07:39 pm:

    That position sounds excellent, Spider. Good luck.

By patrick on Tuesday, March 30, 2004 - 08:26 pm:


    completely worthy and it sounds like it could suit you to a T.

By dave. on Tuesday, March 30, 2004 - 08:28 pm:

By Spider on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 09:14 am:

    Thanks for that link, Dave.

    Dude, check out those average temperatures. I'm going to be in heaven. Look at all that snow! Look how cool it is in the summer!

By Spider on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 09:16 am:

    Uh, forget what I said about the summer...I can't read. But still: lots of snow!

By dave. on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 11:18 am:

    it was pretty warm there yesterday.

By semillama on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 12:19 pm:

By Lapis on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 02:54 pm:

    It sounds pretty cooleven if the summers are not.

By J on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 03:06 pm:

    It sounds wonderful,I'm happy for you.

By Spider on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 03:51 pm:

    Thanks, guys!

    Wow, Sem, there's lots of neat things in the area! Thanks for the link!

    Oh, I just hope I get in. I'm nervous that they won't think I'm qualified...and I can't do anything about that until they call me for the interview, which could be as far away as a few weeks. Must...remain....calm....

By wisper on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 06:11 pm:

    "celebrates Catholic faith and embraces Native American cultures" the same time? whaa?

By kazu on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 06:49 pm:

    Culture does not equal and is not wholly determined by religious doctrine. Perhaps in some orthodox traditions, but not all religious, even conservative ones, are necessarily orthodox.

    When that Native American woman died in the war, my mother, stepfather, and I were listening to it on the news and my mother wondered aloud about the rituals of Native Americans, if most follwed their traditions or stayed with the Christian faiths that were imposed on them (or even just converted on their own). The next thing out of the guy's mouth was how the family would depend on their catholic faith and native american culture to get through what happened.

    It really depends, I think, on exactly what you take from each. Because I don't think that they have to be entirely opposed. The Catholics in Latin America don't seem to have any trouble managing Catholicism with whatever kinds of cultural traditions are unique to their countries. Kids grow up in mixed households and manage to balance cultural practice with religious doctrine.

By J on Thursday, April 1, 2004 - 02:14 am:

    I've had a hairy day,that's right,I said hairy,a Barney Fife day.But reading your post Kazu,made me smile and think blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called children of God.Sem,marry this woman and give her the fruit of your loins,and name that little fruit after Janny.Or somebody just as special:)

By kazu on Thursday, April 1, 2004 - 09:43 am:

    Aw, thanks J. You so sweet. I'm glad I made you smile.

By TBone on Friday, April 2, 2004 - 12:32 pm:

    Sure, I'd visit. It would make my parents happy because I'd have to go through Billings.
    I hope you get it.
    I bet you will.
    Let me know if you want help moving in.

By semillama on Friday, April 2, 2004 - 01:01 pm:

    Did you know that the Cheyenne were originally from Minnesota?

By Spider on Wednesday, April 14, 2004 - 03:30 pm:

    Guess what, folks?

    I got accepted!

    Last night I called the current volunteer in my position and talked to her for a while -- it sounds like a challenging and rewarding job. I think I'll be up to it.

    Thanks for your good wishes!

By J on Wednesday, April 14, 2004 - 03:38 pm:

    That's great Spider!!!!

By jack on Wednesday, April 14, 2004 - 04:47 pm:


By kazu on Wednesday, April 14, 2004 - 05:05 pm:

    Yay! I am so happy for you.

By patrick on Wednesday, April 14, 2004 - 05:13 pm:

    no surprise on our part.

    way to go toots!

By sarah on Wednesday, April 14, 2004 - 06:21 pm:

    that's awesome news, spider. congrats and good luck!

By TBone on Friday, April 16, 2004 - 12:10 pm:

    Rock on!

By dave. on Friday, April 16, 2004 - 01:08 pm:

    that rules! congratulations.

By patrick on Friday, April 16, 2004 - 01:20 pm:

    hey dave were you able to find bandwidth to prop up that angry sam radio excerpt. if not, is it possible to email it...perhaps in chunks?

By dave. on Friday, April 16, 2004 - 02:02 pm:

    yeah, i have it but it's on one of my pcs that is unplugged right now. i'll try to get that posted somewhere. my free web hosting's ftp was down for a while.

By patrick on Friday, April 16, 2004 - 02:43 pm:

    no rush dude.

By Spider on Friday, April 16, 2004 - 04:21 pm:


    Let me show you what my aunt wrote in response to my email letting my family know of my acceptance:

    I looked up the population of Ashland and saw it was almost 500 people.
    Have you really thought this out? The isolation might depress you even
    more. Did you look it up on the internet?

    That's it. No "good job" or nothing. WTF does she mean "depress you even more"?? I'm not depressed. I feel good, even -- dare I say it -- great, especially now that I know what I'll be doing next year.

    So I called up my mom to see if she could enlighten me in regard to the nature of my aunt's damage, and my mom told me my aunt just sent her a long email explaining why she thinks I'm making a huge mistake doing this, plus more bizarre stuff, like how she thinks I'm very depressed...

    I am not depressed! And why does she think I'm making a mistake, and why did she tell my mom and not me?

    She's just trying to stir up shit, I know it. I'm venting here and not to my aunt, because I don't want to start up drama, which she loves so much.


By TBone on Friday, April 16, 2004 - 04:42 pm:

    Stupid 'ho. She just tryin' to rain on your parade.

By patrick on Friday, April 16, 2004 - 04:43 pm:

    did you mom at least come to your defense?

By Spider on Friday, April 16, 2004 - 05:03 pm:

    I think my mom ignored her. She told me to write her back a very sweet email thanking my aunt for her concern and saying I'm excited to move up there and hope to have a good time.

    Which is probably the best response. I just wish I could cut the fake shit and just say what I mean, but that will surely escalate and I don't have the energy to get into a stupid fight.

By patrick on Friday, April 16, 2004 - 06:30 pm:

    absolutely. just ignore the negative shit, and act like you didnt even hear (read) it.

By kazu on Saturday, April 17, 2004 - 01:44 pm:

    that's a good idea. one of the things that really pisses me off about this is that even if she was in any way close to being right (and I don't even think that at all), it's your life and your mistake to know. And this is such a good time to take *risks* such as these. I hate that shit.

By TBone on Saturday, April 17, 2004 - 03:21 pm:

    I got Beyond Good and Evil, Spider. I liked it.

    I beat it too fast, though. I thought there was more.

By Spider on Saturday, April 17, 2004 - 04:25 pm:

    I know, man. I've got enough self-doubt as it is, I don't need her to add to it in any way. And please, who's she fooling? -- she's not at all concerned about me.

    I'm not answering her email at all. I don't feel like pretending I'm too dumb to get that she was insulting me there.

    TBone, did you use a walkthrough?

By TBone on Sunday, April 18, 2004 - 07:28 pm:

    She deserve an answer anyway.

    Nope. No cheating at all. I blew a few evenings playing it, though.

By semillama on Tuesday, April 20, 2004 - 06:21 pm:

    I recently beat HALO and Medal of Honor: Frontline, which is kind of addictive. I think I'll go back to the Knights of the Old Republic game I have going on. Beyond Good and Evil is still on my list of games to check out though. There's also a horror game set in a prison, but I can't quite remember the name right now. It's supposed to be pretty good.

By Spider on Wednesday, July 14, 2004 - 09:32 pm:

    OK, I need to vent some anxiety.

    I'm moving to Montana in August. Actually, I'm flying to Portland for orientation on Aug 3, and then I and the other people in my house are driving to SE Montana five days later.

    But, see, nobody has told us what to bring, what kinds of things there are to do in our teeny tiny town when we're not working, what kind of house we'll be at, how much room we'll have, etc. They told us what to bring to orientation, and when I called the current volunteers at our house they said all the basics (like sheets) were already there, but that's it. Nobody said, you'll need to bring lots of books because there's nothing to do here at night, or, it's pretty warm until October so you don't need to bring a jacket yet, or whatever.

    I know it's all part of the adventure to discover these things for myself, and whatever happens, I'm sure I'll either be able to buy my needed things or have them shipped, but I hate not having these things nailed down ahead of time. I HATE walking into a situation without having some idea of what to expect. This is really bothering me, and there's nothing I can do about it but tell myself it will all be okay. My brain buys that, but tell it to my stomach -- it won't unclench.

    I found out I'll be living with 6 other people (4 girls/2 guys), and I'm the oldest at 26. We've started emailing each other to introduce ourselves, and they seem pretty decent so far. (One has a distressing penchant for writing "2" and "4" for "to" and "for," but on the other hand, she was a physics major, so she should be okay.)

    That's something else I'm nervous about -- I have never lived with strangers before. In college, I lived for four years in a dorm with all single-occupancy rooms, and I didn't socialize with my dormmates. I hope I won't be a bitch.

    I'm also nervous because no one has given me any suggestion on how to prepare mentally for my year of service. And what's even worse is that I've been going through a spiritual depression for the past two months and I haven't been able to pray, so I don't have that comfort or strength, either, and I really need it. This really is the worst possible time to being going through a period of aridity. But I've been reading several books on women who served as nurses in WWII and Vietnam for inspiration -- they went into unknown situations inadequately prepared and scared, and they lived through great danger and trauma, and many of them came home feeling like that was the best year of their life. I figure if they can go to war, heh, I can go to Montana. (One nice thing about the people I'll be living with -- four of them were history majors.)

    I caught myself dumbing down my emails to my housemates -- God, if there's one thing I hope to change about myself, it's to get myself to stop playing dumb. I don't know why I do it! (Well, no, I do know why I do it -- I don't want people to be put off if I use an unfamiliar or overly literary phrase or something, but that's ridiculous, and I need to stop.) See, this anxiety is bringing out my insecurities, and that embarrasses me. I just wish I were more confident in myself. I guess you gain self-confidence by faking it at first, but I always feel like I'm not fooling anyone when I fake it.

    And I was fine until yesterday -- that's when the dread set in. (What's that great line by W.S. Merwin? "I am alone / my shadow runs back into me to hide / and there is not room for both of us / and the dread") Huh, you think I'll ever get to a confidence level where I'll be able to quote poetry out loud without flinching?

    ARGH! If only I had a picture of my new house, a daily itinerary, a detailed video introduction to all my housemates, a detailed list of all the things I need, a two-month psychological preparation guide, and an angel to appear to me and say, "Listen, I've been to the future and have seen you there -- you're going to be fine."

By dave. on Wednesday, July 14, 2004 - 11:08 pm:

    relax. if they have internet, you can order anything you need online.

    i imagine you buying a motorcycle and cruising to billings or rapid city for supplies. a vintage bmw with a sidecar. vintage helmet and goggles a la the evil midnight bomber what bombs at midnight.

    i think what you're doing sounds really cool.

By Spider on Wednesday, July 14, 2004 - 11:51 pm:

    Aw. That would rock.

    Thanks, Dave.

By TBone on Thursday, July 15, 2004 - 12:17 am:

    So cool. I wish I had the courage and motivation to go do something like that.

    I've had forms in my hands, but my hand won't fill them out.

    I hope you like like it. I think you will.

By Gee on Thursday, July 15, 2004 - 10:18 am:

    um, what's this all about?

By Spider on Thursday, July 15, 2004 - 10:42 am:

    I've joined the Jesuit Volunteer Corps and I will be working as a reading tutor at the St. Labre Indian School in Ashland, Montana for a year.

By Gee on Thursday, July 15, 2004 - 01:15 pm:


    Jesuits always make me think of "Man in the Iron Mask".

    "I am the leader of the order of Jesuits!"

By patrick on Thursday, July 15, 2004 - 02:27 pm:


    moving to a place you've never seen is a bit overwhelming and scary.

    living with people you've never entirely met, also, kinda scary.

    however, the real enemy here is not those two factors, but rather the time you have to sit and dwell on them.

    distract yourself.

    i've been suffering tremendous anxiety as well, in terms of where I will be in a few weeks time...all i can say is, what has helped me is the knowledge that everything will turn out ok, and you'll look back and say to yourself "what was I worried about?"

    Im not sure why you would feel the need to dumb yourself down for your roomates. Be yourself and if you sense your brains are perhaps intimidating them, withdraw to perceived comfort level.

By wisper on Thursday, July 15, 2004 - 06:05 pm:

    I hope this doesnt sound overly lame.
    Whenever i start to get really anxious about something,
    it comforts me to know that time wont stop.
    You have probaly noticed by now that worrying about
    something is always so much worse than the thing
    itself, and while in the depths of anxiety it feels like
    youre going to be there forever.
    I rememer so many times during college i would be up
    half the night freaking out about something difficult, to
    realize that i was going to have to face it eventually no
    matter what i felt. The moment would come and there
    would be no reason to worry anymore, because time
    forces you to be there.
    I remember that when i have much dread about the
    future as well. It feels like i have to just sit here panicing
    about it forever and nothing will happen until i make
    some big decision.... but its not like that. It happens
    anyway, it all moves by itself.


    And in an attempt to lighten your mood, I shall point out
    that i had to refrain from using any apostrophies in this
    post, because i am on my roommates goddamn Mac
    and he seems to have set the keyboard to French
    chracters instead of punctuation marks.
    For example:
    Hes Im Youre,

By TBone on Thursday, July 15, 2004 - 06:22 pm:

    Thats so cool.

    Spider, I'm going to be in Billings for a wedding sometime in August. I know you're going to be busy with your big adventure, but maybe we could meet up if we have time and whatever. But I don't want to make things any more hectic for you, and I don't remember when in August it's happening.

By Lapis on Monday, July 19, 2004 - 04:18 am:

    Five days in Portland?!?

    Will you have freetime? I can lead a merry dance about town.

By dave. on Thursday, July 29, 2004 - 01:58 pm:

    5 days!


By Lapis on Thursday, July 29, 2004 - 02:39 pm:


By wisper on Thursday, July 29, 2004 - 02:50 pm:


By Gee on Thursday, July 29, 2004 - 04:10 pm:

    why *sob*?

By Spider on Thursday, July 29, 2004 - 04:29 pm:

    Aw, you guys.

    I'm not really nervous anymore. I had a revelation the other night that I'm basically dreading being unhappy. But, duh, I've been unhappy before and I was able to bear it. So even if I'm unhappy in the future, I'll be able to bear that, too. Since realizing that, most of my anxiety has evaporated.

By wisper on Thursday, July 29, 2004 - 08:34 pm:

    *sob* because Spider is going away :(

By semillama on Friday, July 30, 2004 - 10:04 am:

    Spider! Send me and Kazu your address for Montana, please.

By Gee on Friday, July 30, 2004 - 10:35 am:

    oh. I have a short attention span.

    but, yeah, *sob*, f'real.

By Spider on Friday, July 30, 2004 - 02:53 pm:

    Hey, Sem, I'll try to email it to you as soon as I can after I move.

By semillama on Friday, July 30, 2004 - 03:25 pm:

    ok cool. Maybe I can send you a "Sorabji digest" or something every once in a while.

By Spider on Friday, July 30, 2004 - 03:29 pm:

    That would be great. J

By Lapis on Friday, July 30, 2004 - 04:41 pm:

    Spider, you should email me so we can meet up if you have any free time in Portland.

By Lapis on Friday, July 30, 2004 - 04:41 pm:

    Spider, you should email me so we can meet up if you have any free time in Portland.

By Spider on Friday, July 30, 2004 - 06:56 pm:

    I don't think I'll be able to go to Portland, I'm afraid. L I'll be at a campground ~50 miles south of the city.

    Dammit, I have to go to dinner now, but I'll write more later.

By Spider on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 12:41 am:

    Well, I'm saying goodbye now. I'm leaving tomorrow morning at 6. Let's hope I can sleep tonight. Just pray that I get to the airport on time and all my flights are on schedule and someone is there to pick me up.

    I probably won't write for a while, but if I get a chance, I'll post to let y'all know how I'm doing. You can try emailing me, too, if you want.

    Wish me luck! Good night!

By Dodi on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 01:27 am:

    Good luck Spider!! Have a great journey!

By dave. on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 01:56 am:

    wow. just like that.

    bye bye, spider. let peace be with you.

By Antigone on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 01:58 am:

    Ain't it always just like that?

By dave. on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 02:03 am:

    shit, that sounded a wee bit too final.

    catch ya later, d00d.

By dave. on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 02:05 am:

    yeah, it is. i hope she brings a telescope. the stargazing must be dazzling out there.

By pez on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 02:17 am:

    aw, Spider! miss you.

By agatha on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 02:32 am:

    It's going to be great! Go, Spidey, go!

By J on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 05:09 am:

    Go have a great experience:)And your putting good karma out there.

By TBone on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 08:04 pm:

    Be well, Spider.

    She won't need a telescope. The stars will come to her.

By Antigone on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 08:07 pm:

    Oh, fer fucksakes!

By TBone on Tuesday, August 3, 2004 - 09:36 pm:

    What I meant is that in that part of Montana, the stars are really visible and stuff.
    Not to say Spider isn't really cool and all.
    I was in a hurry, and my terseness came out really flowery.

By moonit on Wednesday, August 4, 2004 - 02:28 am:

    oooh Tbone's really a girl.

By Gee on Wednesday, August 4, 2004 - 10:42 am:

    I'm going to miss her.

    but she'll be back, right?

By TBone on Wednesday, August 4, 2004 - 11:07 am:

    Maybe that's why people have said that my girlfriend looks like a lesbian.

By semillama on Wednesday, August 4, 2004 - 12:29 pm:

    I figure you'll see her around the holidays and such.

    and if you really really miss her, why not write her a letter? I have her address.

By Gee on Wednesday, August 4, 2004 - 02:31 pm:

    can I have it? do you think she would mind?

    gee at yorku dot com

By semillama on Wednesday, August 4, 2004 - 05:10 pm:

    gee- i tried to send it but it got bounced back. send me an email and I'll hit reply with the info.

    doktorsemillama at yahoo dot com

By Spider on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 06:18 pm:

    Write me, please. The bad days are outnumbering the good days, and I need friendly words. I'll have regular email access until Nov. 18, so I'll be able to write back, should you care to hear news of my goings on.

By Spider on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 07:49 pm:

    I tried to explain my situation, but I just came off as petulant and immature, to my ears / eyes, so I don't know what to say now. But I have a much-yearned-for moment of privacy in which to write, so I've got to get some of this out there.

    Tell me if I'm being unreasonable:

    I want to be able to voice a dissenting opinion, heatedly and vehemently if necessary, in an atmosphere that, at worst, tolerates dissention, and at best, welcomes dissention. And I would like someone to back me up if they agree with me.

    Is that an unreasonable desire? This is not a rhetorical question.

    How do you voice conflict with people who do everything in their power to ignore or quell conflict? I feel like being told not to rock the boat only makes me want to rock until the boat fucking capsizes and drowns everyone in it, and that's not healthy or reasonable. Plus, I would come off looking ridiculous, and I'd like to retain some dignity if I can. If I'm allowed. If they allow me. Jesus.

    I'm also smarting from being told to be quiet this morning -- I came down to the kitchen before leaving for work and upon seeing one of my roommates at the sink, I said good morning, and her response was, "Be quiet, [S] is asleep on the couch." Not nicely or gently, just flatly, "be quiet." I have such problems with that particular roommate -- but I don't want to go into that now. I need to stop.

    Thank goodness I'm going home for Christmas. I'm close to suffocating. The job is's the living situation.

By dave. on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 08:11 pm:

    spider, i've been shamefully neglectful. i'll put together a package for you. in time for thanksgiving.

    you need to stand up for yourself. nobody else will. there's always the risk of appearing hysterical and oversensitive but you need to communicate your feelings in a purposeful, constructive way, or they'll burst out in an emotional, destructive way.

    you're too old to be shushed like a child. just say to roommate something like, "wow. could you possibly sound any more disrespectful?" say it with a smile. then, if s/he goes off on you, s/he's the hysterical one. s/he might actually apologize. who knows until you express yourself?

By Antigone on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 09:41 pm:

    Or, you could say, "Can I quietly shove my foot up your ass?"

By dave. on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 09:48 pm:

    with a smile, of course.

By Antigone on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 10:17 pm:

    And show a little teeth. It helps if you have longish canines.

By semillama on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 10:28 am:

    sorry I haven't written spider. i'm bad that way.

    Just keep in mind that you are the most awesome person in that house and they are all jealous and bitter of how much you rock.

By kazu on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 11:14 am:

    I wrote back to you and gave you my "feedback" on the roommate situation.

    I'll send you some D&D-metal dork rock you can blast throughout the house.

By Spider on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 11:20 am:

    Dude, you have no idea how right you are. I *am* the most awesome person in the house. No jokes.

    It's okay if you haven't written....but start writing now!


    I think part of my problem is that for so many years I hid so much of myself because I was afraid of how people would respond...and then for some reason I felt free to show these complete strangers so much of what had previously been hidden.....and they didn't respond favorably. So it was like one of my worst fears came true. You probably don't believe me, but believe me when I tell you I have changed very much -- I don't hide what I'm feeling and I speak up when I'm more highly self-controlled Spider, I tell you what. But I think the lesson here is that I've swung too far in the opposite extreme and I've (and I mean this with minimal contempt) cast my pearls before swine, if you will. The lesson is to choose carefully to whom I expose myself.

    And I was pissed when no one spoke up for me because I *knew* two people agreed with me. I can't imagine being in a group and watching someone get shot down summarily and not jumping in to support them, regardless of whether or not I agree, and *particularly* if I agree. I just don't understand that. So I was pissed off.

    I have to go to school now, but I'll be back.

By Spider on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 11:21 am:

    PS. Dave, this -- "there's always the risk of appearing hysterical and oversensitive but you need to communicate your feelings in a purposeful, constructive way, or they'll burst out in an emotional, destructive way." -- is good. I'll keep this in mind.

By kazu on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 11:22 am:

    Yes, and it is imperative that we all send something pronto, let's flood their mailbox with Spider fanmail.

By Spider on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 11:23 am:

    PPS. Kazu, I didn't see your response up there -- thanks! And I got your letter and began my reply last night.

    OK, I really do have to leave now...

By Antigone on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 01:41 pm:

    People will always react unfavorably.

    Fuck 'em.

    Be fearless.

By Spider on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 03:24 pm:

    Easier said than done, my friend.

    I just need to get away and be with my family and old friends -- I called one of my friends back home last night and got cheered up immensely. I was in hysterics as she told me about the fights she and her sisters have gotten into lately, some in public -- I so miss being around feisty people.

    I can't wait to go to the new museum of Native American Heritage in DC, and go to movies and restaurants and clothing stores in Philly, and go to a big bookstore, and just be around city life. And I hate city life when I have to live it, but I'm craving it now.

By Spider on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 03:25 pm:

    By the way -- TBone, did you see the Northern Lights a few nights ago? I did! A dream come true.

By Antigone on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 04:18 pm:

    Sure, easier said than done.

    That's why you've got to start doing now. One needs lots of practice.

By patrick on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 04:45 pm:

    um, can i make a request to have you expose yourself to me spider?

    ive waited so long.

By patrick on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 04:56 pm:


    i'll settle.

By TBone on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 06:37 pm:

    Spider: Yes! They caused me to propose to my girlfriend. Some sort of beautiful mind control.

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