Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Picture this. Thanksgiving Day. Angie has an extreme sinus infection. She probably should not even be operating heavy machinary but she must jump in the car to head to the nearest drug store for relief. In her rush to leave, she accidently exits via the entrance. A shouting man in a suburban filled with children waves his hands madly at her and honks his horn, as if he has never been in the same miserable situation. At that moment, she wished for a megaphone as she screamed, "And a happy FUCKING Thanksgiving to you, too!"

Monday, November 29, 2004

Angie, I hear you. Just a little extra ugh in an already sad situation. Why would anyone want to take a semi-automatic out deer hunting anyway?

I have been having a rodent problem. Shelly, you might not want to read any further than this line.

The rat is in the car. It will not leave the car. I was first alerted to the rat when I left an empty paper coffee cup in the car overnight, and found it in shreds the next morning. Then it started working on the floormats and the insulation. And the air filter. I was mad when I bought the new air filter, so I bought poison tablets too. Then I decided not to use the poison (Dad put hardware cloth in the duct instead), and left it in the car to take back to the store the next day. So of course the rat(s) tore open the package and chowed down - but didn't die! Nope. After three days of cleaning the car repeatedly and wondering if I was going to smell something awful soon, the rat(s) chewed through a bundle of wires, putting the car into a coma. My uncle put in new wires and replaced the battery, but the dashboard lights still don't work. Officer, if it's after dark, I honestly don't know how fast I'm going.

I've tried putting the cat's bed in the car to give it a little eau de kitty. Found rat poo in it the next morning. New poison tablets are going untouched. I keep checking under the seats and in the spare tire well. People at work keep asking me if I've found a body yet. No, not yet.

Friday, November 26, 2004

I've been meaning to post about this all week but hadn't had a chance.....I was really bothered when I heard about that hunting incident in Wisconsin. The next day, I learned that the suspect was a Hmong, which only added to my stress. As soon as they flashed his picture, I thought to myself, "Damn, did he have to be Asian?"

I really am not one to pull the race card, and I don't think of the Midwest as a typical breeding ground for racism but their tiny Homng/Asian population does not help matters. In my reading, I found this interesting article: http://www.wisinfo.com/postcrescent/news/archive/local_18786194.shtml

Upon talking to my cousin and a very close black friend, both of them referenced the recent NBA brawl (for the non-sports peeps: http://www.indystar.com/articles/9/196503-5159-179.html). "Angie, I think the same thing every time a black man is arrested for rape/murder/drugs/theft/assault...."

I'd love to live in a Polly Anna world and assume that everyone knows that these are individual acts, but the cynic in me always wins out....

Thursday, November 25, 2004

Before we start shoveling, can we make a few snow angels?

I don't know what the next four years will bring (other than Z getting ever hairier and hippie-er), but I'm hoping for a Lake Effect Summit. With or without shovels.

A few of my favorite things (this week, anyway):
Lemon tahini on steamed veggies, especially beets and beet greens (lemon juice, tahini, olive oil, water). Cumin and garlic optional.
Knitting mittens. I have three of them in progress right now.
Leftover turkey.
A new friend who is an awesome cook. Fabulous apple pie, pumpkin pie, and chocolate pie. I didn't try the cheesecake or the custard pie because I was about to fall asleep (also had turkey, homemade cranberry sauce, and silky smooth mashed potatoes at the pre-Thanksgiving party). I want to marry her. She can keep her boyfriend, I just want to come home to her cooking.

The car I drive is parked right outside one of the kitchen windows. All morning, a red cardinal kept stopping by to attack the red cardinal in the passenger side rearview mirror. *cheep chirp* *pwup thump smat* *really annoyed chirping* I think I've had a few days like that too (and one of these days, I'm gonna smack that beeyotch into next week).

Still checking the weather reports for good chicken frying days.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

In honor of our anniversary I will crawl out of my hole for a while. I am well. I have a great job these days. I work at Edward McKay books, which is a big used books store that also sells music and movies and text books and so on. The job keeps me very busy and I like most of my coworkers a lot. Working with friends is better than working with "co-workers" in this case, at least. The pay is weak, but the benefits are nice enough (health and dental insurance, vacation time, flexible hours, lots of store credit). I'm also working at Gate City Noise, the record store. Although I love the place, I have to be honest with myself and say it's a dying beast. Business has dried up to pratically nothing. It's a shame, but Andrew, the owner, is a champ. He's made it work for longer than I could have.

The rock and roll band rolls on. Our approaching thirties make the continued functioning of the band a question. I'm not shooting for U2 level rock stardom here, but it is a fun hobby. I hope we can keep it together after 2005. Currently, though, everyone is into it. Plans include: two-disc Dawn Chorus omnibus of our first two albums, an eight day February tour of the midwest, a longer Summer tour, and a third album. I've got vague plans to do something by myself.

I've been feeling good physically too. I've lost a few more pounds, which is nice. I've a spring in my step. Dad tried to convince me to do Atkin's. The Atkin's diet and the vegetarian diet do not mix well. I'd be eating nothing but corn or something. But, he's right about overloading on the carbs. Especially flour which I've come to realize has a tremendous effect on the body. I feel better if I avoid flour, salt, and sugar. So, I'm trying to avoid them.

I've been reading a lot of comics, because I can get trade paperbacks at the store and because I figured out how to download what I don't want to buy. I find a lot of inner peace and joy in old Spider-man comics and Fantastic Four and Green Lantern and stuff. When I was a kid, I was in love with comics. It's a nice full-circle to read them again as an adult. I'm working my way through Warren Ellis' Stormwatch/Authority series right now. Mike and his buds recommended them to me when Garrison toured through here a few years ago. Thanks Mike. Good call.

I've also gotten obsessed with crime fiction through HBO's awesome show the Wire. Me and some buds at work have been trading books by guys like James Ellroy and George Pelecanos and Kent Anderson. (Speaking of whom, I found an old Advance Reading Copy of Kent Anderson's first book in a box of books someone was trying to sell us. It sells online for $250. Cool.) I'm a sucker for the hopeless noir types.

God, four years, guys? And JT and Kainui and Shelly and I have been corresponding for years and years before that. Well, I guess I'm glad to have you folks. Sorry I've gotten so lazy.

Monday, November 22, 2004

testing. toasting. tersely. tickleck. tootie.

You may not recognize the five words above, but look a little closer, closer still, touch your nose to the screen, now you can't see them at all. But now, maybe now you're starting to remember? These were the first five words posted to this beloved blog four years ago to-the-day (I wish my first post were so inventive).

Happy Birthday Lake Effectors.

I'm sorry to be the prodigal to point this out, but I'm also a sucker for nostalgia, monutmental occasions and above all revisionist history.

I'm trying to imagine what may have motivated a blog amoung us 4 years ago, and I think I may know what (or who), but perhaps it's time for a re-positioning. It's easy to explain how tronsport, relocation, nomadic lifestyles, or in some cases the refusal of the nomadic, inspite of friends shifting locations, led to our humble and yet proud virtual hypertext community, more immediate than I'm willing to admit.

Given today's political evironment I situate the blog as a support group that would never define itself as such, a stability amidst questions of a stolen election, a begrudging acceptance that something like this, our current global-political situation, our elected leaders, their policies, could happen. I haven't become militant, or even pessimistic, far from it, I'm suggesting that this lakeeffect was a "pre-emptive" (if I'm still allowed to use this word) bomb shelter, a group duck-and-cover, a self-protective measure.

I won't make any statements more grandiose than that, but it's certainly the way I feel at the moment. A while ago the author of the first five words you ever read as a lake effector said that long posts (if posting at all) were reserved for the introspective, slightly melancholic, possibly lonelier moments. No gnus is good gnus then. In the year 2000, at least by the end of it, maybe we finally had words for a post pre-mellinial tension, we all had quiet moments, a willingness to share, an appetite for... well just an appetite, we certainly know how to talk about food.


This summer I went to a conference in LA, when I got back I was 30.

4 years is not the long lens of time. Even still the archives of lakeefect represent my unkept once and future diary - informed, interpreted, positively negated, sometimes (regrettfully on my part) missed by the blog company I keep.

Here in Buffalo, temperatures have been unseasonably mild, meaning warmer lake temperatures. We all know the old lake effect equation by now:
warm lake + cold artic air = snow measured in feet, not inches.

The next four years will most likely clear up stormy, and (if I may extend the metaphor, however corny it may be) we're all here to dig each other out.

So lakeeffectors, bake a cake, blow out four candles, and most importantly make a wish... but don't tell anyone or it won't come true, save ourselves

It becomes clear now, never mind any of it except for this:

Lake Effect is a repository of untold wishes, destined to come true.

testing. toasting. tersely. tickleck. tootie.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Did anyone else know that this blog is being tracked on BlogDex? (http://blogdex.net/blog.asp?id=6329&action=overview)

Thursday, November 18, 2004

The library wish list thing is really cool. I wish that it were easier to sort though.

Jeffrey Eugenides' Middlesex ended up being quite the page turner. I hated to see it end so much that I drug out reading the last 100 pages over two weeks (I could have easily finished those pages in one night). I can't wait till we discuss the book, and it just so happens that the author will be coming to town for a reading. Very exciting.

In other literary news, I was saddened by the death of Iris Chang. She was so young, gifted and had the world at her feet.

Some libraries have wish lists posted on Amazon - you could check there and see what's most needed. If not - maybe buy a book that makes you think of that person - for example, for you, I'd buy the library a copy of Stitch 'n' Bitch or something similar.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

This year for the holiday season, instead of going to the mall and buying crap to exchange with friends, I'm buying books for the public library instead. Any recommendations? [Z? Z? Talk to me, man!]

Tuesday, November 09, 2004


Hola, sorry I've been so out of touch.

Mommyhood is a funny thing. I've already identified at least four potential pet sitters should I have the urge to flee town. In the three weeks I've had her, I've grown quite attached to Sandy Joe. She is such the sweetie. She knows to leave me alone as I hit the snooze button a minimum of three times in the morning. When it's about time for me to get up, she rests her head on my bed, so that I can pet and love her. Even in spite of her 60 pounds, she jump as high as I am tall, especially if she's anticipating a walk.

This weekend I organized an engagement dinner party in Austin for some friends who will get hitched in March. We had a feast fit for kings. Two tapas dishes: meatballs in almond sauce and green beans with pine nuts in a lemon sauce. Assorted cheeses (I love me some boursin topped with roasted tomatoes). Oh, I baked brie, topped it with almonds and raspberry preserves, all encircled with Granny Smith apples (eat with warm bread). My main entree was chicken maquechoux creole (chick, tomatoes, corn) served on a bed of rice. Chocolate chess pie for dessert.

Congrats Kainui, you're famous!

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Congratulations - I love the knitting photos. How awesome.

Saturday, November 06, 2004

So if you were to go to a bookstore this week and wound up looking at the knitting books and saw Stitch N Bitch Nation and flipped through it, you might see


You might also see a photo and short bio of the designer of these patterns.
I'm planning to go to a big chain bookstore tomorrow after work in the hope that they have them in stock, because I won't get my copy for a couple more weeks.

Friday, November 05, 2004

I have been looking at the Purple Maps (thanks to boingboing.net). The map below was done by Jeff Culver.

My schedule for the past few months means I'm not on AIM at the same time anyone else on this blog is. It kinda sucks. This week, I've been craving chat sessions with Lake Effectors, Z in particular (a little vitriol, a couple of bad jokes, and then the Z special brand of wisdom). I'll settle for making up conversations with Z in my head.

Dreamed about commuting on a train. In the dream, I referred to it as a subway system. The rails and trains were stacked up and close together, high as buildings. The rails curved and rose and fell and crossed over each other. Winding stairs led to small platforms that had no signs or maps, but everyone knew which train they needed and how to get there. The subway trains were small and sleek and clean, white with different colored trims.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

I'm going to make a lame joke about how the election made me sick. Okay, it's probably my little sister I can thank for the swollen throat, headache, and congestion.

I worked at the co-op for 8 hours yesterday. There was talk, some anger, lots of bitterness, but I think that what will really stand out for me is the general manager telling me an off-color Groucho Marx joke. I couldn't help it, I laughed, and it was even better than a hug.

Other things that have made me feel better: the post at BoingBoing.net titled What Would a Dumbass Republican Do?, and an essay by Lama Surya Das.

The BoSox broke the curse this year, Kerry lost the election. The universe says: we can't have it all. And I'm thinking: maybe this is just what we need.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Zach put it more eloquently. This sucks.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

I am appalled by my fellow countrymen tonight. I just cannot believe that we've become a people that would re-elect this President. I am ashamed, deeply, at the level of cynicism, fear, and arrogance that we are seeing tonight. This is a low place we find ourselves.

Z, as I type this, Kerry is at 55% in HI, and people are still voting. Lots of polling places were overwhelmed and have long lines. HI is traditionally Dem, *but* we have a very large military population AND evangelical Christianity is on the rise. Plus the non-Hawaiian Polynesian population, which tends to be very religious and voting along church lines.

I arrived at my polling place at 8 am, no line, walked right in and picked up my ballot. I should have been more careful to look at the actual ballot itself - the receipt stub was missing, which wasn't caught until I went up to put it in the machine. When I couldn't find it, the volunteer....REMOVED MY BALLOT FROM THE ENVELOPE AND SHOWED IT AROUND. Ostensibly looking for the stub, and then for the number. Which is written, might I add, next to my name in the voter log. Then they wanted to give me a stub from a different ballot, because the only reason I want a stub is to show my employer, right? I was insistent and they let me vote again. The problem seems to be that people have been forgetting to remove the stub, so the helpful volunteers have been removing the stubs and putting them in the envelope with the ballot. What really pisses me off is that no-one in the polling place (besides my Dad) seemed to think there was anything wrong with taking my completed ballot out of the privacy envelope for all to gawk at, or for that matter, removing the receipts from the ballots. Yes, letter being written. And I've decided that next election, I volunteer to work at a polling place.

I was voter #55 at my polling place.

Jesus guys. I feel like I've been kicked in the stomach. Is there any hope left for our country? Is this what we've become?

i'm sooooo nervous! the first poll closes in 1:40:33 ... i had no line, i voted right before 5pm. any interesting stories here? i was ready to throw down philly style, if needed. but everything went swimmingly. if i'm at home watching returns, i'll be online... let's catch up and be nervous/anxious/happy/sad together.

Z: the post below is why I love thee so.

I have been reading this GREAT book -- Middlesex by Jeffrey Euginedes. I was initially intimidated by the 500 plus pages, but so far so good. I'm about halfway through, and my interest is still strong. My favorite character is the Greek grandmother Desmonda.

Sandy Joe is adjusting nicely (fingers crossed, fingers crossed). She had some anxiety issues and would eat paper. I think I may have found the answer: raw hide chews. She really is a sweet thing. And would you believe that she still has not barked in the three weeks she's been home? I'm wondering if she's really a Basenji (sp?).

Monday, November 01, 2004

Hey Kainui, what the hell is going on in your state? Are they lacing your bong hits with something? You guys are a Red State now? What the...?

The only poll I trust, the Nickelodeon Kid's Poll (4 correct picks out of 4 elections) puts Kerry over Bush 55 to 45. I guess they didn't call any kids in Hawaii, where, apparently people think Kerry is going to tax the sunshine or surfboard wax or something.