Sunday, July 22, 2012

Before and after: My broken desk

In June, I moved into a quirky little apartment in one of the oldest neighborhoods in Omaha. It's perfect, because it's close to family and just a short hop to two interstates. It's imperfect in many ways, though, because the house is 119 years old. Corners aren't square, the floor isn't flat, and of course there's no central air. This means: PROJECTS! And so much hammering stuff.

While moving, my computer desk fell apart in my and my friend's hands. We went to heft it up the stairs, and - CRACK! - one side fell off. The wood around some of the embedded screws was totally ripped apart. IMAG0219
I had to fix it, because many things in the room could not be put away until the desk was in place. And more importantly, my computer could not be set up without a desk! With all the expenses of moving - seriously, $125 for the electric company to switch my house's power into my name? - I couldn't just buy a new desk, nor did I want to. The solution, then, involved a ton of wood glue, which you can see below. During
Note the mess of drawers and computer stuff all around the floor.

IMAG0227 Luckily, the broken side was the one that is now up against the wall. I was able to be a bit messy with glue and a couple of L-shaped bracket thingies (kind of like this one).

And shazam! A functional desk, that cost just a few bucks to fix.  IMAG0261 This was back in June, when I first moved in. I've been doing a bunch of other projects since then. The age of the house means I've had to get creative, trying to make the 1890s construction match my 2012 needs. Mostly, it's a ton of fun. My mother instilled in me a love of projects and problem-solving.  And my budget forces me to fix stuff myself, rather than throwing money at stuff that's broken.

Right now, I'm waiting for the first coat to dry on my newest project. My other desk, in another room, is just for crafts. I decided to paint the top and slide-out tray with chalkboard paint. I figure my crafting desk should be a craft itself, to constantly promote more creativity. Because when you live in a house as old as mine, you can never be too creative!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


The problem with doing a Rocky Horror episode of Glee is that a whooooole bunch of kiddos have no freaking clue what Rocky Horror is. Or that it exists.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The things in my backpack

One of the things I do when I'm not watching baseball or sitting in class or counting the seconds until the new episode of Dexter next Sunday is work as an RA (Resident Assistant).

One thing that RAs occasionally have to do is put together educational programs for our residents. Tonight, my floor is going to play some Jeopardy. Except, it's not about 18th Century French Lit, or 'Starts with Z,' or Potpourri. Oh no. These are college kids, and most of them freshmen. So....yeah, we're doing Sex Ed Jeopardy.

Because I don't want to simply TALK about safe sex, my coworker and I decided we should make condoms available. Which meant that I had to go to the student health center and ask for "condoms. Lots of them. As many as you can give me, actually."

As I left the health center with dozens and dozens of condoms in my bag, I wondered: If I were hit by a car right now and everything I was carrying got scattered around my mangled body...what would the person who rushed to my aid think of me?

I guess it's a good thing I didn't get hit by a car.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

This is a NEWS story?

I am no longer a terribly politically active person. When I was 16 years old, I lived and breathed politics. That proved to be a little too much exposure, so I tapped out and started breathing oxygen (and baseball) again instead.

I do vote, obviously. I do my homework on the people and issues that appear on my ballots, but I tend to shy away from political blogging and discourse.

And I read newspapers - it would be really hard to get through journalism school without doing that! Speaking of journalism school, don't they teach students about attribution of other words, that you can't just stick a heated personal opinion into a news story unless it's someone else's viewpoint?

Journalism students are also taught to avoid presuming to know what someone is thinking unless that person TELLS the writer what he/she is thinking.

These things must not apply if a writer works for the New York Times. If the basic principles taught to FRESHMEN had to be followed by NYT writers, the following paragraph would probably not exist (emphasis mine):

Yet Mr. Obama will inflate his challenge by forsaking several gimmicks that President Bush used to make deficits look smaller. He will include war costs in the budget; Mr. Bush did not, and instead sought supplemental money from Congress each year. Mr. Obama also will not count savings from laws that establish lower Medicare payments for doctors and expand the alternative minimum tax to hit more taxpayers — both of which Mr. Bush and Congress routinely took credit for, while knowing they would later waive the laws to raise doctors’ payments and limit the reach of the tax.

(From this article - note that it does NOT appear in the Op-Ed section.)

This isn't a political thing. I have my views about President Obama, and I had my views about President Bush. Those views are irrelevant here, because this is about journalism.

Listen, Jackie Calmes, if you wish to call parts of Bush's budgetary strategy "gimmicks," you might want to either write that in an Op-Ed piece or find someone else to say it, and then quote that person. "Gimmick" lord, what a charged word that is.

And perhaps President Bush and Congress knew all along that they would eventually waive those Medicare laws, but YOU cannot be the one who decides that and reports it that way. Any halfway astute journalism student could tell you that it would be more responsible to get a quote from either Bush or a Congressman that actually said, firsthand, that they know what? I'm done with this battle.

Sadly, I think that the NYT is beyond help. And again, this isn't a "leftward bias" thing. I don't want the paper to lean further to the right, or anything like that. I just wish it would even give the appearance of adhering to journalistic standards, instead of falling all over Obama and shitting upon Bush at every opportunity.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Clever t-shirts

I really dropped the ball on Christmas this year. I should have asked Santa to bring an end to "clever" t-shirts. A few exceptions do exist, but for the most part, you aren't as clever as you think you are for wearing a camouflage shirt that says "you can't see me."

There's an age that it's sort of acceptable to wear these...little boys from age 9-14 or so can wear them, because boys of that age are little snots by nature. People older than that are not supposed to be little snots, and just end up looking like big dopes.

Dear Santa, if you're not all Christmassed out, can you get rid of these? Thanks.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Googling for dum---err, for everyone.

I like to know how people get to my main blog, Baseball and Other Things, so I check Sitemeter pretty often. I love when people Google really odd things to get to it. One of my favorites ever came just the other day, when someone searched for "'Eric Seidman' crap." (I suspect it may have been Seidman himself.)

And here's another great one: What has happened to Kip Wells?

Yes, because Google works just like a conversation. Just....awesome.

UPDATE: I did some asking, and it was not Seidman himself who googled "'Eric Seidman' crap." But he seemed rather amused that someone did that.

In other news, I joined Twitter just so I could get updates from Shaq's feed. One of the updates that convinced me how awesome an experience this would be was "Whatthe hell is wrong wit da suns"


Monday, November 10, 2008

Making someone feel uncomfortable

Over 60,000 facebook users say they'll be taking part in the 1st Annual International Make Someone Feel Uncomfortable Day this Friday. I am among that crowd, and am planning small ways I can celebrate the holiday.

I don't see any need to be inappropriate, like Party Boy from Jackass (NSFW), but that might just be because I lack the sparkly silver thong and bow tie. Anyway, no need to risk getting arrested for indecent exposure; there are lots of ways to make people feel awwwwwkward.

- If you find yourself in a mostly-empty waiting room, sit in the chair right next to someone. If he/she doesn't appear to be fazed by your presence alone, stick your elbow up on the armrest between you every now and again. Don't keep it there.

- Hum the guitar solos of your favorite 80s hair metal ballads, everywhere you go.

- Stand right next to someone in an otherwise empty elevator.
- Fart.

- Fall asleep standing, preferably in the middle of a conversation.

- Trip over something very small.

- Try to high-five everyone you see. Coworkers, homeless people, bankers, cops, the guy at the next urinal, everyone.

- Wink at random people. Never underestimate the creepiness of a bad wink. (Hint: Most are bad.)

- Sneeze into your hands, pause a beat, then try to shake someone's hand.

- During casual conversation, randomly raise and lower the volume of your voice.

- Loudly applaud random things that happen in quiet rooms.

- Use your best Hannibal Lector voice all day.

- Wear your pants backwards.

- Laugh like SpongeBob. (Unrelated note: I love this episode..."I can't see my forehead!")

There are lots of other ways to make someone feel uncomfortable this Friday. Usually, a simple invasion of space does the trick. It's not hard to do, and it can be very rewarding, so join the movement on Facebook and go get awkward this Friday!