mayhap: anthropomorphic rabbit with his head in his paws (mad tea party)
My parents and I were going to go up to Minneapolis this week to visit my brother and take in the Minnesota State Fair, preferably in the form of a bucket of Sweet Martha's chocolate-chip cookies paired with bottomless glasses of milk.

Sadly, we have been doubly thwarted in these plans, as it is not only hotter in Minneapolis than it is in Kansas City but actually under an extreme heat advisory, and anyway my brother will not be there as he has just passed through Kansas City this very morning on his way to the work-related destination where he will be occupied with work for the next two weeks.

I can, of course, make my own chocolate chip cookies and place them into the receptacles of my choosing, and no one is likely to stop me from refilling my glass of milk, but I don't think that it will be the same.
mayhap: The Doctor holding sonic screwdriver (more sonic)
You know what she found at the thrift store, whilst I was sensibly looking at sweaters?

Two unopened sets of original flavor!Doctor Who DVDs, that's what. (The Tomb of the Cybermen and the Lost in Time Collection of Rare Episodes, neither of which I've seen anything of. Yet.) This should be fun.

I got my mother into Doctor Who perhaps a little over a year ago, incidentally, and we re/watched all of New!Who just in time for her to watch the end of year specials live with Danny and me over winter break, leading to this memorable conversation:

SOMEONE, EITHER DANNY OR I, SUBSEQUENTLY LOST TO THE MARCH OF TIME AND MORE MEMORABLE SUBSEQUENT UTTERANCES : *says something which happens to incorporate the term 'sci fi'*

MY MOTHER (as though the introduction of this term into a conversation has for the first time enabled her to express an opinion which heretofore she has been unable to put into words, for a lack of words) : Oh, sci fi! I don't like sci fi!

MAYHAP (*boggling*) : You don't like sci fi? What do you think Doctor Who is, then?

MY MOTHER : That's not sci fi! That's a documentary!

I suppose turnabout is fair play for when I was twelve, deeply immersed in historical Holmesian fandom and, not entirely tongue in cheek, insisting that Sherlock Holmes could have been a real person, and how, theoretically, might one prove otherwise? (This led to my father seriously talking to me about how injecting cocaine, in any solution, would be A BAD IDEA, as though they were actually concerned that this was something that I was somehow going to do.)

Batbaby

Dec. 2nd, 2009 09:42 pm
mayhap: Zuko has a hoodie and emo hair, labeled (emo!Zuko)
Nate, my brother's former roommate of three whole years, accidentally knocked his girlfriend up and they're having a baby together, like, any day now, or something like that.

(This is particularly noteworthy because Nathan, my brother's BFF from their days together in private fundy Christian school, accidentally knocked his girlfriend up and they had a baby together a few years ago. I'm just saying, if your name is Nathan and you know my brother, you should seriously consider celibacy or a vasectomy or something.)

Danny asked me over Thanksgiving what he should get Nate and his babymama for the baby shower. I gave the matter some thought, trying to decide what would be useful to the parents-to-be and also a meaningful gift from my brother, and then I had this brilliant idea: a black hooded towel with bat ears!

Now I just have to manage to make it with my deeply suboptimal sewing skills, but I think it's going to be awesome. Most importantly, they don't know the sex of the baby yet, but obviously both girls and boys can wear black and aspire to be batbabies.

fiawol

Nov. 26th, 2009 01:26 am
mayhap: sketchy boy in blue with text Ravenclaw (ravenclaw)
Arrived safely in South Dakota. At a rest area in Iowa, there was an enormous raccoon sitting in front of the doors eating a burrito, seemingly willing to tolerate our comings and goings, so long as we did not mess with her burrito.

I love my new camera. So do my second cousins, who have taken more pictures on it than I have so far. Some of these pictures do not have Zach's fingers blocking the viewfinder.

My brother tells me that he has a friend at school who writes Harry Potter fanfiction. Apparently he is supposed to write her a story and review one of her own stories. And, like all of his other homework, I'm supposed to help him. :D:



25010 / 50000 words. 50% done!

It's not ideal, but it's something. We'll see what our Thanksgiving is gong to be like.
mayhap: Delirium surrounded by butterflies (delirium)


2745 / 50000 words. 5% done!

As you can see, I have some catching up to do. I had planned to spend the evening isolated at the local tea shop for this purpose, but then my parents and poodle decided to tag along, so we're sitting outside enjoying the unseasonably warm weather.

Next thing I know, my mother has a crazy woman recounting her life story, which mostly involves her various possessions, such as a $2,500 laptop, a $9,000 pair of miniature rottweilers (acquired in 'central Berlin, Germany'), and a diamond-studded skull and crossbones ring, being stolen from her by various persons such as her neighbor, houseguest and Zales jewelry store. She seems to have settled in with a large cup of some kind of yellow liquid and a cigarette and doesn't seem inclined to go anywhere.

I, um, guess this could be some kind of inspiration?

She's now claiming that her Maine coon cat (which, according to her, was invented in the 11th century by a man named Coon) can herd 7,500 sheep in an hour.
mayhap: Inui throws stuff into his juice (Inui Juice)
This weekend my family visited the Minnesota State Fair, where my brother was broadcasting live video over amateur radio from a weather balloon that they had tethered over the University of Minnesota building. We consumed massive quantities of food, all of which was fried and/or on-a-stick, fought our way through massive crowds, probably swelled by the absurdly-chilly-for-August weather, and boggled at the spectacle all day long, and still managed to miss, for instance, that there were vets performing surgeries on pets live somewhere on the premises. The Minnesota State Fair is terrifying. If you get a chance, you should go.

____________
* Warning: do not, I repeat, do NOT see the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical State Fair, even if you know some or all of the people who are performing it. The titular song is a vicious earworm that will haunt you for decades. It is not worth it.
mayhap: Viking ship with text read the ocean by the cupful (read the ocean by the cupful)
In honor of my brother's brief visit this weekend, last night we revived the tradition of the Viking bonfire. We pillaged a bottle of locally-brewed mead from the liquor store, built a fire in our backyard and, toasting each other Viking-fashion, read aloud from the text Danny selected, the Prose Edda.

Danny, who did the honor of the reading this time, was highly bemused by the prologue, which manages to combine the creation story from Genesis, a smattering of geography, a bunch of genealogy with unpronounceable names, a Trojan founding myth à la Virgil, and then, finally, the Æsir, although even familiar figures like Odin insisted on having twelve more unpronounceable names. I advised him to drink more mead and it would all make sense.

He got more into the swing of things with the the Tricking of Gylfi, which had plenty of proper Norse mythology, although also plenty of unpronounceable names, which are inevitable. The night was gorgeous and nothing like a typical Missouri July night, and much fun was had by all.

Drinc hail!

awesome day

Jun. 7th, 2009 12:52 am
mayhap: balls pour out of a door with a heart (grownups)
My mom is so awesome! She found this Legolas standee at a garage sale and set him up in my apartment and made everyone pose for pictures with him.

My dad is also awesome. He and I went to see STAR TREK ♥ ♥ ♥ Like my mom, he only watched TOS, with the addition of some or all of the films, and he really enjoyed it. He remembered back in his Navy days when he was on shore leave visiting some friends and he announced that he had to be getting back to the U.S.S. Enterprise and this little kid was just in awe: "You work on a spaceship?!"

My less awesome plans for tomorrow are to go shopping for shirts, because I don't have enough of them and they all look kind of similar so it looks like I have fewer shirts than I actually do, which is just sad.

I think I really need to/want to get a Wii Fit.

Tomorrow is my brother's birthday and he is in Minneapolis and I will not be making him an awesome cake, alas. I did help pick out his top-secret present.

Star Trek!

May. 8th, 2009 12:24 am
mayhap: captain's log, Guybrush Threepwood (captain's log)
I just got back from seeing Star Trek with my mom! She hadn't actually watched Star Trek since the first run of TOS back when there were like two channels and there was nothing else on, but she is a big fan of J. J. Abrams ever since I got her hooked on Alias. Her only complaint was that she couldn't hear what was going on in the Kobayashi Maru scene because the whole audience was chortling so damn hard.

You know that feeling you get when you find this plotty cracky epic fic in a fandom that you hadn't thought much about in a while and you devour the whole thing in a single gulp of fannish glee? Yeah, it was like that. I loved it.

Then again, I got into Trek through novelizations (my brother handed me his copy of Dark Mirror on a family vacation when I'd finished all my books) and fic (I'd been on the internet since I was twelve, but the first time I heard of slash was in an actual dead tree magazine when I was seventeen, and I started googling for Kirk/Spock even though I had only the vaguest idea who they were), so my cred is highly suspect.

mourning

May. 2nd, 2009 12:05 pm
mayhap: The Doctor holding sonic screwdriver (more sonic)
Oh my. They say you imprint on your first Doctor, and I have to say that I am finding that to be the case.

Actually, I went through this to some extent with my mother, who imprinted hard on Christopher Eccleston when we began our mother-daughter viewings. I sort of tried to prepare her for the whole idea of the Doctor regenerating as an extremely clever method of keeping the show going indefinitely with convenient casting, but I'm pretty sure it was still rather traumatic for her. When we got to Doomsday, I practically had to talk her down from becoming really terrifying Rosefen, I think because, watching the show on DVD, everything was changing much too fast and she wanted someone to stay put, for continuity's sake.

I didn't watch the first series of New Who when it was on, because I am quite easily intimidated by backstory and refuse to read books that I want to read very much until I can get ahold of earlier volumes in the series, and if, say, my library didn't have those volumes, I never did read that series, which makes for odd lacunae in my childhood reading. It was after the Christmas Invasion when pretty much everybody on my flist had posted something about Bush looking tired that I finally got annoyed, read a summary of the episode, still didn't get it, downloaded the episode, still insist that it doesn't actually make sense unless you assume the ridiculous compulsion that the Doctor exercises, which he does, oh, he does!

I followed the casting of the Eleventh Doctor and I really am quite pleased by it, except for the fact that the poor boy needs to let his eyebrows alone, or possibly have new eyebrows implanted. I thought that I was adjusting quite healthily. I think it may be that I just rewatched all of series three, my very favorite, in one single weekend, but oh, it really does hurt that my Doctor is leaving me! How can he never be the Doctor again? There are three more episodes, yes, and Stephan Moffat is taking over after that, yes, but there will never be another Ten episode written by Moffat! This hurts me.

Oh, my Doctor, my love. Why must you leave us all?
mayhap: Elaine Marley blows smoke off her gun (saucy female)
For as long as I can remember, my mom has done the taxes in our family.

If you were only superficially familiar with my parents, their personalities and their predilections, you might find this division of labor curious. My father is the detail-oriented devote of all things logical and quantifiable who plays chess and works on robots in his spare time; my mother is the self-identified 'global' 'random' who reads magazines from the back forward and strings together entire sentences without a single proper noun. Even when I was little, while accepting the natural order of things as the very young naturally do, I found this curious.

It all made sense in the end, thougg. It turns out that my mother, strongly encouraged by her Depression-era father, took a degree in Business Education, which was the safest and easiest education degree she could get with the fewest credit hours, and then there she was, with this electronic typewriter that was incredibly smart, under the circumstances, and knowledge of how to use it. Not only did it pretend to understand what you were typing; it would remember it, for one whole line at a time! This was truly impressive, and honestly, it produced more readable results than my father's Commodore 64. No wonder that my mother ended up taking over tax preparation.

These days, she purchases the latest edition of TurboTax almost as soon as it's available, but that doesn't stop her from doing my taxes, even if she has to grab my W-2 out of my hands to do so. (So far, not necessary, but I keep this in mind when it comes to what address my electronic checks are 'sent to'.) Having forced herself to prepare all tax forms every year, she is overly-enthusiastic about her self-appointed role, and yet it is a world of easier to let her steal my W-2 and file my takes for me every year, including 2008, when she basically seized them without my explicit permission than to actually do it myself. Drunken with the possibilities offered by basic software wizards, she forced me to itemize my deductions, purely as an experiment, even though the final result was less than a third of my standard deduction, amply confirming my desire to file a 1040EZ in the first place.

[livejournal.com profile] coercedbynutmeg would no doubt do a better job checking over my filing, and [livejournal.com profile] wisdomeagle would hopefully not flag me for errors. Not that my mother would allow me to do my own taxes in the first places, when she is perfectly capable of using her latest version of TurboTax ....
mayhap: Sark at gunpoint, nose bloodied, with text sex & violence (sex and violence)
I caught a midnight showing of The Dark Knight with this guy:



He informed me on Wednesday that he needed a nurse costume immediately. Regular nurse or slutty nurse, I inquired.

Regular nurse, he said, although in fact the first place he took his girlfriend and me on his nurse costume quest was the local Priscilla's. They not only didn't have a nurse costume, they didn't even have a piece of nasty cheap nurse negligée, further confirming my belief that Priscilla's is completely and utterly useless.

We finally ended up with this sleeveless shirt from Wal-Mart and a skintight white miniskirt with little pleats in the middle from Kohl's, so, slutty nurse. I thought it was quite effective.

Oh, and the movie was fantastic, of course.
mayhap: hennaed hands, writing (Mai Yamani)
Every year it falls to me to me to decorate my little brother's birthday cake. My task is to produce a gloriously geeky creation, earning the acclaim delight of Danny and his many guests, in spite of the fact that when it comes to artistic ability, I have two left hands, and I am not actually left-handed.

This year, using one of the Dark Knight posters as my inspiration, I created the Joker cake:



A boy and his cake. Danny didn't actually know what I had planned in the way of decorating, but he was wearing his Joker t-shirt fresh from the boy's department at Target anyway.

Three more pictures under the cut )
mayhap: two hands reaching with text Grip tape is love (grip tape is love)
My brother got a Wii! He didn't think he was going to be able to afford one, but he earned all the necessary money by standing in line overnight in Minneapolis to buy a PS3 for some guy, and then buying a bunch of computer games on sale on Black Friday and then returning them to Wal-Mart without receipts. (Defrauding Wal-Mart is an important holiday tradition in our family.)

Unfortunately, he promptly took himself and his Wii back to Minneapolis. We had just enough time for me to set it up, have it not be able to read the disc because actually I had set it up upside-down, bowl a couple of games with my dad and Danny and Sam and Stan, fiddle around with the internet connection (the news and weather channels are apparently not in operation yet, but the store is quite prepared to take your money) and then shove it back in the box and throw it to him as he ran out the door.

Nevertheless, it was awesome. I want it back! The worst part is, he couldn't even be bothered to bring back the GameCube he was going to give us, his family, as a consolation prize. He sucks.
mayhap: Tezuka holds a pen and stares into space (Tezuka writer's block)
I have decided to formally renounce any attempt to catch up on NaNoWriMo in order to focus on my [livejournal.com profile] yuletide fic and other things in my life. I wrote approximately 12,000 words and my characters never even got to have sex (although I , um. Fantasized about it a few times). Better luck to me (and them) next time, I suppose.

Also, I just noticed that there is a stray contact lens stuck above our shower door. I immediately felt my eyes in a panic, but it isn't mine, so it must have been one of my brother's and thus have been there quite some time. I left it there to show him when he gets home tomorrow, because it amused me.

EDIT: Also! I scored a hardcover copy of Good Omens from the donations pile at our library, and the funny thing was, it was with a bunch of other books like This Present Darkness by Frank Peretti and one of the Left Behind books. I think its original owner was either very, very open-minded or just very confused.
mayhap: Inui pushes up his glasses (glasses)
Hee, you know what's fun? Watching people come around to your ship right before your very eyes. Up until now, I think that Sam just put up with my crazy Inui/Tezuka love like you do your half-senile great-aunt who keeps telling you about her houseplants or something and you're too polite to tell her to shut up already, but last night we finally finished watching the Yamabuki arc and made it to the Inui-Tezuka ranking match and I have a shiny new convert now.

"I calculate that there is an 82% chance that you are in love with him," he informed Inui when Inui started telling Tezuka about how he had recorded the look Tezuka gets in his eyes in his data. Also, he was very taken with [livejournal.com profile] prillalar's proposition that he made his Very Significant Bracelet out of Tezuka's hair: "He has the motive, means and opportunity!" ♥ ♥ ♥

While we were watching one of the (interminable!) Ryoma-Akutsu episodes, my little brother stopped on his way out the door and stared at us. "What?" I asked.

"The sounds coming from your computer," he said, gesticulating. "Without the picture, it sounds like, you know -- "

I started giggling. "No, we are not watching porn."
mayhap: Kaidoh says WTF? (WTF?)
The thing I just don't even begin to understand is how my laptop case could just vanish from our hotel room. I didn't take it anywhere the entire time we were in Rapid City and yet, when I went to pack my laptop, I discovered that I had nothing to pack it in.

We turned our hotel room upside down and uncovered two empty plastic vodka bottles concealed in the lower recesses of one of the beds, but no laptop case. This is annoying to me out of all proportion to any joy a thief might get from taking it on account of a.) Apple doesn't make any more 12" laptops so I'm finding the market for suitable replacements restricted to say the least and b.) that case had all of my Prince of Tennis DVDs in it, so now they are GONE, except disc one (episodes 1-24), which was in my not stolen computer and is therefore safe.

It's obviously not the end of the world since I can replicate my efforts, but still. My preciousssss. Wah.

I left [livejournal.com profile] handynavi custody of our Sims while I was gone and even procured a house key to lend him. (I don't have a house key. I asked my mom to have one made for me, but she doesn't have a house key. Just ... I don't know.) Unfortunately, my mother decided that just locking the doors like a normal person was insufficient and had my father barricade the door with a 2x4 right before we left, so Sam still couldn't get in the house even with the key.

I pondered this conundrum and concocted a scheme that I felt would afford the greatest chance of success to a person seeking entrance to our house which unfortunately I will omit here in case any of you are stalking me and are perched in the neighbor's tree right now with your laptop and wireless internet connection, trying to figure out how to take things to the next level. However, I can report that Sam and his sister did succeed in breaking into my house on Friday night, which is basically completely awesome. You only wish you were that cool.

I also have a few vacation stories that have nothing to do with breaking, entering or theft, and there are pictures, but now I think I'm going to do something slightly less strenuous like maybe lying around.
mayhap: a hand launches a paper plane over an aqueduct (travels)
Me, my brother, and these four other guys )

We made it to Rapid City, although there was a time, wandering around the labyrinthine hell that is Wall Drug and expelling more than my own body weight in mucus, that I didn't think that we would. I have eaten buffalo (it tasted like one of those hamburgers you hear about in science fiction synthesized by computers that don't quite understand). I got this terrifying rabbit that I think was supposed to be cute, and that in fact looks like the rabbit from Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

Mere photographs do not adequately capture the terror )

All right, I understand that we're going to go pirate miniature golfing now. Arrrrrrrrr!

Eeep.

Jul. 15th, 2006 01:33 pm
mayhap: illustration of young girl consulting tattered map (Dave McKean)
I didn't realize when I bought my mom an iPod for mother's day that I was signing my death warrant.

It's just a good thing there were no other people on some random road in Iowa with us when my mom started weaving all over the road because she was using her iPod at the same time. I owe my continued existence to the underpopulation of Iowa.

Itinerary

Jul. 13th, 2006 05:15 pm
mayhap: Viking ship with text read the ocean by the cupful (read the ocean by the cupful)
My family is going on our first proper family vacation in fifteen years, sort of. Generally on all our 'vacations' we stay with my grandparents in Sioux Falls, SD and sometimes go to the dentist. This time we are going to Rapid City, SD, staying in a hotel, and only visiting my grandparents on the way there and not even visiting the dentist at all. It's no Disneyland, but it's a big step for us.

Rapid City is near Mount Rushmore, which is the one thing you know about South Dakota if you know anything about South Dakota, so it is only right and proper that we should go and see the thing as it is the notable feature of our home state. However, I am not entirely certain what we are going to do for the rest of the week that we will be there. The fact that the Wikipedia entry lists "South Dakota School of Mines and Technology" as one of its three points of interest is not very promising. (Also, apparently, the tiny town of 11,893 people where I lived for two years is the ninth largest city in the state. I freely admit it: my home state is made of lameness.)

Ah well. My dad has to be there for work anyway, so it is, like, basically free! And our hotel has wireless internet, and a waterslide, and HBO, so it is better than sitting around at home.

I'm trying to pack, though, and it is becoming increasingly obvious that I don't have any clothes, like, at all. Woe. I don't normally notice because I could wear the same thing every day, like, forever.

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