Wow, it's been three weeks, huh?

So even though it's been the better part of a month, I'm not going to post a long, in-depth entry completely updating you on my doings and such. What I will say is this: quit my job, had another car accident (this one, technically my fault), finished my first semester of grad school (4.0, if you want to know), Christmas, 3 movies in one week (Narnia, y'all), and plenty watching of this:


Book Me!

Dear readers, who may number at least 10, I request that you help me in something. Please rec me some books. I have been leaning towards the slack side on reading since college, and, while some of that was due to the amount I read and how I had to read it, it is no longer acceptable. For a general idea of what I like, I will list both (some of) my favorite books and a list of stuff already in my reading queue.

Some Favorites
The Great Gatsby
Pride and Prejudice
The Sound and the Fury
The Sun Also Rises
Bridget Jones Diary
(yeah, I like modern American lit. What?)

Reading Queue
The Year of Magical Thinking
Tom Jones
Love in the Time of Cholera
In Cold Blood (okay, so it's a re-read)
The Republic (I so should have read this already)

Now, grant me the gift of literature, fine readers.


After Watching the Movie

After Watching the Movie
Originally uploaded by Blinvisible27.
"...My conscience is captive to the word of God. To go against conscience is neither right nor safe. I cannot and I will not recant. Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me."

-Martin Luther


Random Quickie

It was my intention to write a nice long entry about my nice long Thanksgiving break (during which I saw this guy and his wife), but then I realized that I had a mound of work to do, so I'm going to have to disappoint.

But, this morning whilst i was driving to work, I smelled that particular smell that hotel pools have (esp. indoor ones). You know, with all the chlorine? It was odd because I was nowhere near a hotel nor a pool, but it made me think of that one Spring Break that I spent with Cecil and Erynn at the beach. It was fun, and I think it was the last time that I was at a hotel where I went swimming. Anyway, I just love that fact that senses, including smell, are so closely knit to memory.



Come Thy Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace.
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount; I'm fixed upon it,
Mount of Thy redeeming love.

Here I raise mine Ebenezer-
Hither by Thy help I've come.
And I hope by Thy good pleasure
Safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger
Wandering from the fold of God.
He to rescue me from danger
Interposed His precious blood.

Oh to grace how great a debtor
Daily I'm constrained to be.
Let Thy grace, Lord, like a fetter
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it
Prone to leave the God I love.
Here's my heart, Lord, take and seal it
Seal it for Thy courts above.


Originally uploaded by 353.
I love the name Stella.

That is all.

ETA: And the word "bejiggity."


My First Wreck

Originally uploaded by sigue:).
So I was in an accident Saturday evening-- but I'm fine. Here's the story:

My brother and I are driving along to Zaxby's in Simpsonville, so as to avoid the traffic on Woodruff Rd, though usually we frequent that one. Anyway, Fairview Rd. or St (can't remember)is a four lane road, fairly active with the cars and whatnot. Anyway, we switch to the right hand lane to go around a 96 Ford that is creeping along. We stop at a red light, and I'm looking across the street at a gas station, jamming a little to the music, when I hear a crash type noise behind me. I check my rearview mirror and find that the 96 Ford has hit a car in the left lane and is swerving into my lane. It is inevitable that she will hit me at speeds of about 15-20 mph. That doesn't sound like a lot, and it isn't, really, but I'm completely stopped, so it's jarring, a bit. Anyway, I look away from my rearview mirror because I don't want to watch my car get hit.

We get out, and I'm already aware that my car probably has little damage and is certainly drivable. My brother is already on his cell talking to my parents; the other lady who's been hit is already on her cell to the police. I am...doing nothing because that's all I know to do in this situation. I look in at the driver and passengers in the car that was at fault, and the driver looks...a bit off. She's not well; something happened in that car. I should've asked if everyone in there was okay, but I didn't. I didn't even think to until the other lady who'd been hit did. The police were on their way.

They come, two cars of them. The driver of the at fault car had a seizure while driving, so we call for medical assistance. Well, the police do. A fire truck shows up, then an ambulance or two. It's a bit of a blur because I've never been in this situation before. I'm just praying that the seizure lady is alright. And, if I'm honest, thinking about all the insurance stuff to deal with.

We sit in my car because it's gotten dark and it's cold and the police told us to do so. The ambulance takes away the lady who'd had seizures (I know names; I just don't think it's appropriate to share them on my blog). I sign a green form with everyone's information on it, am informed to send that to my insurance company and have them send it in within 15 days, and leave. I have moved, acted, and reacted on autopilot.

I'm so grateful that it wasn't a bad wreck because it wasn't. It's just my back bumper that's messed up and maybe my rear wheel alignment. My brother and I were both fine physically; no scratches. I just had a headache for awhile, as I'd hit my head on the car ceiling(?) while wearing a baseball hat. It was one step up from a fender bender. God was gracious, and I'm completely thankful.

Clemson wins again

Clemson wins again
Originally uploaded by orangejack.
Not the best game, but Tigers pull it off (with a called back touchdown, I might add). Whitehurst goes 4-0 against Carolina. Smile.

C-L-E-M-S-O-N T-I-G-E-R-S! Fight, Tigers! Fight, Tigers! Fight, fight, fight!

Oh, and Adam? My dad pronounces it Clem-son, and I've picked it up.


People Please!

I was just reading over at the Starbucks Gossip blog, and they had a discussion about celebrity sightings at Starbucks. Apparently, someone wanted to see if he or she could bump into a certain celebrity-- Tom Cavanaugh?-- and asked which Starbucks he'd gone to. And someone replied, in all sincerity, "I heard he goes to the one in New York City."

What? Come on. Use your head!


Originally uploaded by jeffisageek.
1. I have an irrational disgust for Michael McDonald. Luckily, he has a new TV commercial, which prompts me, of course, to command him to shut up. Loudly. Every time.

2. I'm Team Aniston.

3. Penguins have replaced ducks on the top spot of my scale of animals I think are cute.

4. I'm recently obsessed with earrings, particularly long, dangly ones. I'm wearing turquoise chandelier ones today.

5. I buy my Clinique lipstick new from Ebay because it's crazy cheaper.

6. In closing, I look good in red. See, check it out--- butt dance, butt dance!



I just got an email from Jonathan Edwards. Now obviously, there have been people born with with that name besides, you know, THE Jonathan Edwards; I just don't know any. And it was about how the idea of a pretrib rapture is wrong, which, hello! I'm good with. And apparently, according to this email, which also offered me $1000 if I got his book (ah!) and proved that he'd dealt badly/wrongly with the PreTrib stuff, Tim LaHaye has a gay son. I don't know what that has to do with anything regarding PreTrib, but he said so twice. I don't even know that it's true. The whole situation was just odd. And funny.

Come on! Jonathan Edwards emailed me from beyond!


I Wear Too Many Masks

And I'm taking a couple off right now.

1. I call myself a political Independent, but I'm probably more Democrat than Republican. I'm more liberal than conservative. Sorry folks.

2. I'm not in a Southern Baptist church because my beliefs and theirs coincide the most. I'm in that church because I like that church and believe that God has something for me to do there right now (the college ministry). I might be a Presbyterian. I might be non-denominational. I'm probably emergent. I'm at least evangelical, not fundamentalist.

So, there you go. It is what it is. I was talking to Heather B. last night about this stuff and a bunch of other stuff as well, and I told her that 16, even 18 year old me would be AGHAST at what I just said. It's kinda funny to imagine a conversation between 18 year old me and 23 year old me.

18- Wait! I'm, like, a Democrat? But, but I'm a Christian!
23- Yeah. AND more Democrat than Republican. Look, you don't believe that abortion is a-ok suddenly. It's more about social justice and fiscal stuff.
18- But...
23- *suddenly starts screwing with 18* You don't believe in a pretribulation rapture anymore either. AND you're not dispensationalist, not that you know what that means yet.
18- What? People don't believe in a pretribulation rapture?
23- Yep. 'Specially YOU!
18- I don't...But that's wrong!
23- Oh yeah? Why?
18- Because it is!
23- *Laughs mischievously* You drink socially!
23- You're going to see RENT the movie! It has gay people in it!
18- No!
23- Yep. And you have several gay and lesbian friends.
18- But. I mean, that's wrong.
23- Let me help you. You're about to say they're sinners.
18- Well. They are!
23- Yeah, they are. So're you. And your friends? Not saved yet. They're doing what they're supposed to be doing--sinning! And you, as a Christian? You sin a bunch still.
18- This is a lot to process.
23- Yeah. I know. Man, five years changes a lot. But, you'll be happy to know that you're still wicked awesome.
18- Well that's good. Hey, am I married?
23- No.
18- Oh, come on!
28- Well, you won't believe what happens after you're 23....

So that's what I envision a conversation with my 18 year old self to be like. It's pretty funny to me because man! I was an arrogant little something. And self-righteous. I was totally missing some of the stuff I was being taught (because this wasn't an indictment of how I grew up and the theology and doctrine I was taught). Think about, though. I mean, if we could meet ourselves at 18 or at 15 or whenever, what would we tell ourselves? Would we like ourselves? It's interesting.


Yeah, It's Different Again

I know, I know. It's already my 3rd look, but I really like this one, so I think it'll stay around for awhile. Also, I added my ghetto, add it in by keyboard, not imported playlist over on the sidebar.


Things/People That/Who Own Me

  1. Starbucks
  2. Mozilla FoxFire
  3. Blogs
  4. School/Office Supplies
  5. Penguins
  6. Jon Stewart
  7. Seth Green
  8. Stewie
  9. Fruit
  10. Cheerwine
  11. Ebay
  12. My planner
  13. Facebook
  14. Katie King's Halloween pumpkins
  15. Board Games
  16. Buffy
  17. Shoes
  18. Stephen Colbert

If I Closed the Library at Night

I would announce the closing over our intercom using song parodies. I made one up on the way to work this morning to Semisonic's "Closing Time," which honestly took...not a lot of effort. Closing time is closing time, you know? You can find the real lyrics here. And I'll leave you with my song.

Closing Time (Library Remix)

Closing time-Open all the doors and let you out onto campus
Closing time-Turn all of the lights off over every boy and every girl
Closing time-One last call for checkouts so finish your papers and homework
Closing time-You don't have to go home but you can't stay here
I know who I want to check me out
I know who I want to check me out
I know who I want to check me out
Check me out
Closing time-Time for you to go out to the dorm rooms you will be from
Closing time-This room won't be open till your classes begin again
So gather up your jackets, move it to the exits
I hope you have found your sources
Closing time-Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end
I know who I want to check me out
I know who I want to check me out
I know who I want to check me out
Check me out
Closing time- Time for you to go out to the dorm rooms you will be from
I know who I want to check me out
I know who I want to check me out
I know who I want to check me out
Check me out
I know who I want to check me out
I know who I want to check me out
I know who I want to check me out
Check me out
Closing time-Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end


November 23

This movie comes out on Nov. 23. Originally a Broadway play, the main original cast members (with one notable exception) came back to film this. I am really excited about it. I love the soundtrack, and these people are wailing for most of the show. Most people are probably familiar with at least one song from this show-- "Seasons of Love."

I can't wait to see it; I have plans with Heather to go.

...How do you measure, measure a year? In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee? In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife? In 525,600 minutes--how do you measure a year in the life? How about love? Measure in love. Measure your life in love.

Holiday Coffees at Starbucks

It's official. I' m becoming a coffee girl. Not that I always haven't been, but I mean the kind who prefers coffee black. My mixed drinks are becoming too sweet for me. Yep. I'm going to have to add another modifier to my drink orders because I'm lowering the number of pumps of mocha and peppermint.

Also, I had a Gingerbread Latte today because, even if they're not telling you, Starbucks will already fix you their holiday drinks (GL and Peppermint Mocha). It was also good but too sweet.

And I'm brand loyal. I love Starbucks. A lot.


Happy Ween of Hallow!

tongue pumpkin
Originally uploaded by Blinvisible27.
Or Harvest Day, if you're so inclined. I plan on celebrating by leaving work at 4:30 and thoroughly NOT going to class because my Human Growth and Development class is the most boring class I've ever had. I'm actually not exaggerating here.

But anyway, I'm picking up a pizza for my mom and me as my dad and brother are out of town. Then, for the first time in my life, I shall answer the door for trick-or-treaters and give them candy! I'm excited.

You know, I've done about 85% of my Christmas shopping. 85%! This is grand. On the Day after Thanksgiving (Black Friday), I will still go shopping, though. I love it--the energy of the morning, the people who take it too far, the fact that when we leave at 1 or so, we've been going at it for at least 7 hours. That's a work day, people.

Yesterday was Homecoming at my church. I had a lot of fun. Heather and I double plated it (so what?) and everyone ate outside of the lawn (in chairs and at tables). It was such a gorgeous day. We talked for awhile to Tricia McWilliams and her dad, Jim, the fruit of which was the saying "Too many compliments! You're old!" (A long story involving a conversation between Tricia and Heather. Basically, you say it after you've complimented someone alot. Trust me, that's all you need.)

Jim, to us three girls all around 23 years old: You're in the prime of your lives! You're young. You're catches! You're delights, all of you."
(A silence...becoming awkward...)
Staci: Too many compliments! You're old!

You see how it works. Spread it around! It's obviously already part of my repertoire.

Saturday, Heather and I cleaned out my books because I was running out of room. It was...hard but not as hard as I'd originally thought. Probably because I could talk it out with Heather. Maybe tomorrow I'll post a list of ones I'm planning to give away to see if anyone wants them. I also cleaned out my movies, but mainly I just got rid of VHS and made a list of ones I wanted to replace. Also, I will once again receive The Princess Bride for free! People just keep ending up with 2 copies, and I swoop right in there with my no copies and even up the score. So yay Princess Bride DVD!

I think that's it. I'm even having trouble following my thoughts today. So, congrats if you made it through this rambling, not what you might call coherent entry.


A Stupendous Entry of Amazing Wit (Or Not)

Alright, kiddies, I'm in the Writing Center for 5 hours this morning, and exactly 2 people have signed up for appointments. You know what that means right? Oh yeah. Mega-Long Entry!

1. I think this is funny, and it's all over the place. I've heard about it 3 times in the last day. Funny Ebay ad. Be sure to read the questions.

2. I was listening to the radio this morning, and they played Charlie Daniels' "Devil Went Down to Georgia," which I love unequivocally. But, this morning it reminded me of a humor piece I read this week. I missed the Devil's solo this morning, but that article made me wonder who I would think was better if the song, you know, didn't go ahead and tell me. Anyway, it's a pretty funny little piece, I thought.

3. On one of the radio shows I listen to in the mornings, they were doing lists of things they'd never do. You know, we all have to do stuff we don't want to do, but it's kind of nice, I guess, to know that there are some things you don't want to do AND you don't have to. SO, here is a short list of usually normal things I will never do.
a. Wear a seasonal sweater. I might wear ONE of the colors of said season, but only one, and there will be no tiny reindeer or such on any of my clothing.
b. Watch Star Trek. No, I'm sure that some of them are good. I just don't want to watch them.
c. Own a poodle or yappy lap dog. Yappy lap dogs do not include pugs.
d. Wear Wranglers.
e. Play on a softball/baseball team. Play softball/baseball. I hate them with the fire of a 1000 suns. Yeah. That much.
f. Drink tea. Stop asking me!
Also, it was a lot harder than I thought to come up with things I would never do. Apparently, I'm willing to try a lot of things.

4. I know the coffee orders of those close to me. By heart. I seriously associate you with your coffee order. It's almost as if I think that this is a signature drink, so much so that I call it the Angela or the Heather or what have you. Does anyone else do this?
--Heather: a decaf grande one pump mocha, non fat, no whip, no foam mocha valencia (which has an extra shot in it)
--Angela: a decaf grande non fat, no whip iced mocha
--Mom: a grande white chocolate mocha with caramel
--Dad/Drew: a grande white chocolate mocha with raspberry
--Charity/LB: carmel machiatto
-- Erynn: not a fan of the coffee; prefers chai
--Ryan Smith, who I'm not particularly close to but apparently have had coffee with a bunch of times in groups: vanilla latte

I don't know; it just seems a little weird to me, you know? But hey, at least if those people ask for me to bring them some coffee, I have their order down. And in case you were wondering what my order is, it's a grande (decaf if it's at night) non fat, no whip peppermint mocha. But I'm thinking about cutting down the number of peppermint and mocha pumps. Just so you know.

So yes. This is my long and probably pretty pointless entry. I hope you were able to follow my widely divergent brain from place to place.


Him's A Big Boy! Yes, Him Is!

My dog likes to be carried like a baby. A 45 lb. baby. Who licks your face. Sometimes that's cute and endearing.

Sometimes it's really not.

But look at his face!

I Love Brett Bretterson!

I just took an online quiz entitled "Which Obscure HomestarRunner Character Are You?". I ended up being Teen Girl Squad, which not exactly what I would call obscure, but whatever. I just know that I look so good. And that Brett Bretterson is my boyfriend. And that I need a juice box. Or a lunchable. Maybe a single Frito? A Rib-a-que? No?

Corn is no place for a mighty warrior.


I Eat Pithy Saying Cookies

I used to eat fortune cookies.

Apparently, the people who I'm sure are being payed to write the fortunes have slipped. Or just don't know the difference between a pithy saying, or a proverb if you will, and a fortune. Is anyone else a little frustrated by this? I mean, I know I can be indignant about the stupidest things, and I'm sure this is one of them. But. Don't call it a fortune cookie unless it's ACTUALLY a fortune! My family and I went out for Chinese last night. Out of 4 cookies, ONE was an actual fortune. The other 3?

1. The view only changes for the leading dog. (I think we're supposed to feel inspired, maybe? To do better?)

2.Wisdom is knowing what to do next; virtue is doing it. (Thanks virtue police!)

3. Price is what you pay. Value is what you get. (Seriously, these last two? DEFINITIONS.)

Speaking of definitions, if you're not sure what a fortune is, people who write these things, look it up! (Def. 4b).

Truth in advertising people. Either ship up, or change the name to "Pithy Saying Cookies." I'll feel a lot better. Either way, we're still going to play the "in bed" game. I'm just saying.


Music Recs/ CDs I Wouldn't Want to Live Without

So, I commute 2 hours a day, sometimes 3 if I have school that night. That's a lot of driving, which leads to time to listen to a lot of music, which luckily I have. However, even with a nice collection, I get bored. So I'm looking for some music recs, things you love and think I would too; I'm open at this point. I don't really like rap, but I like some R&B. Do not rec me either of the Simpson sisters. I love rock--indie, new, classic. I can listen to, like, 2 bluegrass songs at a time, but I do like it when it's well done. I enjoy approximately one new country song a year. This year, I've doubled that number with "Bless the Broken Road" and that one song by Keith Urban that was forced on me by ALL stations. I like old country-- Patsy, Hank Sr, etc. Also, Loretta Lynn, which...enough said. She is wicked awesome. To further illustrate my musical inclinations, I have compiled a list of CDs I wouldn't want to live without. I tried to keep it to one per artist, but I didn't with all so...get over it.

Alanis Morrisette, Jagged Little Pill
Alanis Morrisette, Unplugged
Fiona Apple, Tidal
Fiona Apple, Extraordinary Machine
The Strokes, Room on Fire
The White Stripes, Elephant
Jem, Finally Woken
Rilo Kiley, More Adventurous
All Coldplay
The Killers, Hot Fuss
Madonna, The Immaculate Collection Vol. 1
Lauryn Hill, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill
*Nsync, Celebrity
Britney Spears, Greatest Hits
Tegan and Sara, So Jealous
Four Star Mary, Thrown to the Wolves
Common Rotation, The Big Fear
Jars of Clay, Jars of Clay
The Decemberists, Her Majesty
Ray LaMontagne, Trouble
Zero 7, When It Falls
Spoon, Kill the Moonlight
Jewel, Pieces of You
Indigo Girls, Retrospective
Sarah McLachlan, Mirrorball
Flaming Lips, Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots
Eagles, Greatest Hits
Beach Boys, Greatest Hits
Temptations, Greatest Hits
Remy Zero, The Golden Hum
Jeff Buckley, Grace
Ryan Adams, Heartbreaker
OK Go, OK Go
Passion: Hymns Ancient and Modern
Waterdeep: Enter the Worship Circle
Hungry Collection (Vineyard)
Elton John, Greatest Hits
Essential Billy Joel
Kelly Clarkson, Breakaway
R.E.M., Automatic For the People

And for soundtracks:

Garden State
Buffy the Vampire Slayer (BtVS)
BtVS: Radio Sunnydale
BtVS: Once More With Feeling
RENT: Original Broadway Cast
O.C. Mix 1
O.C. Mix 4

So there you go. Yeah, *Nsync's on there. Yeah, so is Britney. Deal with it.


Let's Hear It for the Boy!

Happy Birthday to the coolest brother I have, Drew. He is 17 today, folks. 17.

That's him with my dad last Christmas. He's grown a bit since then even.



I am recently hooked on Lost, and I want to be able to discuss it with people after it airs because it's smart and well-done. But any message board that has people writing in complete sentences without all the "OMG!!!1!1 u know dat Sawyer is SO hawt!!!111!!" crap is inevitably full of people who find it fashionable to hate any show that's popular (though some just legitimately don't like it). I don't want talk to them because they want the show to fail, etc. So, other than Erynn, is anyone watching this show? What are you thinking? Anybody want to speculate?*

*Post kept purposely vague for those overseas who have not seen the Season 2 episodes.



An online quiz just told me that I have a beautiful soul. So, shut up Jesse "Is that Aaron Carter?" McCartney with your unwelcome influence over my beloved online quiz time wasters. And shut up for making me automatically think of your song when I read that. And shut up Aaron Carter, just for good measure.

This is in no way intended to offend fans of Jesse McCartney, Aaron Carter, or that song. I just...CAN'T.


Google Fun

So, this is really a pointless and ridiculous excuse of a post, but I found it funny. It's the results of a Google search of "Staci needs." A few that particularly made me laugh:

1. Staci needs to go up and stop hiding behind the whole 'I'm black and I'ma girl so poop soup.' I can't tell you how true that is.

2. Staci needs to get warm and snuggly for those cold winter days and nights.

3. I think Staci needs to shave by the looks of her avitar!

4. Staci needs bigger fields to run. and fish to fry

5. Staci needs to quit stealing my pick up lines!!

6. Staci needs to get a meddle for being such an awesome friend. I wonder what the difference between a meddle and a medal is...

What else do you think Staci needs?


Burninating the peasants!

Not long ago, I posted about a trip to Clemson I took with the always rocking Heather Bedsizzle. After spending WAY too much time exclaiming over various 97 cent CDs, we went to a pub/bar and had some lemonade. We sat at a booth, which had writing all over it from previous occupants. Thus, this picture, from someone who is indeed wicked awesome:

Look at him in all his majesty.

Trogdor was a man...wait, he was a dragon-man....or maybe he was just a dragon, but he was still TROGDOR!!! (/inexact quoting of Strong Bad Emails)


My Happy List

1. Getting off 2 hours early from work today and not having to go back until Wednesday.

2. the rain and slight, cool, crisp air

3. tiny pumpkins....in really small amounts.

4. new shoes

5. Fiona's new cd

6. Ebay (yeah, I'm a little addicted)

7. Sweaters.

8. Going to Salsarita's with LB tonight. Yay!

ETA: Who wants/needs a Gmail invite? Let me know; I got bunches. Email me your address if you wants.

We Have a Winner!

Alright, let's hear it for Miranda! The two songs I was thinking of were indeed "Better than Ice Cream" by Sarah McLachlan and "Your Love is Like Bad Medicine" by Bon Jovi. Let's hear it for the girl!



Last night, we discovered that Tater does not like for anything to be sprayed at others, in the air, or especially at him. For reals, he barked like crazy at my dad after he'd sprayed Lysol at my brother. He was really upset about it. So, being the compassionate people we are, continued to spray the Lysol. He was crazed about it. So, note to self, Tater does not enjoy Lysol.

Songs I Live In

We're, the vast vast majority of us, musical beings. We may not play instruments or sing or even have a basic understanding of what is good and bad music, which is highly subjective. But we know what we love, know what moves us. I've never met anyone who doesn't love some sort of music, though I'm told such people exist. I can't imagine living like that, but I'm always, at some level, involved in music. I listen to it all the time in my car, singing along 97% of the time. Random words like "ice cream" or "medicine" make me spontaneously burst into song. I live my life as though I were in a musical (also, points if you know what 2 songs those words will make me sing. Happy guessing!). If I'm not singing, ask me what song's running through my head. I'll have an answer, I promise.

Like everyone, I have songs I like, songs I detest, guilty pleasures, etc., etc. But I'm talking about a different kind of song, one that's, yes, different for everyone. I call them songs I live in. By that I mean, the song sweeps me out of time, in a sense; it appeals to me on a deeper, soulful level. It's highly evocative-- I feel desperately these songs. It's as if I've left and sat down in the midst of the song, cuddled there in the melody, assured by the meter, living the dissonance and harmony. I hold my breath at that dissonance; it's relief to have resolution. It's a deeper level of involvement; obviously, we interact with music all the time--kind of how we know whether we like it or not. But this type of song? It's captured in music some feeling you've endured, are enduring, maybe just will endure. It's a part of your life that someone else composed. And it's the music and the lyrics together that evokes your response.

For me, there are songs that I will always have that interaction with. Here, in list form (with some explanation), are some of mine.

1. Nightswimming, R.E.M.-- I'm betting those of you who actually know me are shocked by this. You know, or not. For me, this is the quintessential growing up and away nostalgia song. When I was in the midst of that whole time after high school when the people who used to know you don't anymore, I found it hard. Hard to let go. Hard to know that this was okay and that I was okay. I was, and this song helped me breathe more easily. I put in on, heard those opening notes by the piano, strong and beautifully though slightly melancholy, and was fine. Better than fine.

2. Don't Panic, Coldplay. Shut up. I loved it before Garden State. It's not exactly a happy song, but it's not depressing. It still manages to have hope. The guitars are, for lack of a better word, transcendent (to me at least). "Homes, places we've grown; all of us are done for" juxtaposed right beside "We live in a beautiful world?" Just, yes. I think a lot of why I identify myself in this song is because of my Christianity. Look around--things aren't so great. But there is still beauty. There is still truth--there is still God, and He is evident in this world. (Note: I'm aware that my feelings on this song are more informed by, well, my feelings than lyrics. I know. I just don't really care.)

3. Honey and the Moon, Joesph Arthur. This is one of those songs that I haven't exactly experienced, but I don't have to. The music, the tone, the lyrics, the atmosphere are all perfectly working together. "But right now, everything you want is wrong. Right now, all your dreams are waking up. Right now, I wish I could follow you to the shores of freedom, where no one lives." I've been the one who's wanting everything wrong before, I think. But this is my favorite: "We're made out of blood and rust, looking for someone to trust without a fight." That's not all I'm looking for, but I've been burned enough to know that finding someone to trust implicitly and naturally isn't as easy as I thought it was and wanted it to be.

4. Hallelujah. Originally by Leonard Cohen. Because of Shrek, a lot of people only know the Rufus Wainwright version. The Jeff Buckley version is my favorite, and pretty well known on its own, because he is literally singing that song out of experience, heart, pathos, what have you. He knows that song or is really good at pretending. "It goes like this-- the fourth, the fifth, the minor fall, the major lift." Music as metaphor? Goes along quite nicely with what I'm trying to say.

5. Walk On, U2. The only baggage that you can bring is all that you can't leave behind. All that you fashion, all that you make, all that you build, all that you break, all that you measure, all that you feel-- all this you can leave behind. Walk on. Also, I love U2.

So, there you go. Anybody got one he or she wants to share?


Seriously, Who Came Up With That?

This is my friend Heather. We're going to Clemson to spend the day with our friend Tray. But that's not what I'm posting about. No. It's this.

That's right. A CABOOSE garden. Never mind that there is indeed a train caboose in said garden. Caboose garden! This is priceless. Heather illustrates.

You've met Smelly Cat...

Now meet Itchy Butt. Dear readers, I present to you a video made by my good friend Liu Mai.

The Itchy Butt.

Extraordinary Machine

Fiona Apple's 3rd cd, Extraordinary Machine, was released yesterday. I wasn't able to get it until this morning, and then I really couldn't listen to it all on my drive to work, which grr. BUT, I can say that you should own it. I'm an Fiona fan, so bias and such, but it's incredible. And when/if you get it? Listen to track 11, Not About Love, because. Wow.


Poetry of the worldly flavor

I bought these two collections of poetry from Amazon last week, and they came yesterday. It should be known that I love poetry-- reading, writing, interpreting, etc. Love it. I was an English major in college, and I should have read these 2, especially in my Modern Poetry class. In all fairness, we did read 1 Akhmatova poem. But, just one?

Of course, I am really interested in Russian literature and poetry in general. Their culture is far older than ours, and I think it's more steeped in pathos because of that. It's gorgeous and with a mystical, weighty old feeling to it -- it's as if it has a patina. And Neruda is obviously one of the greatest love poets ever. You can disagree with me, and I'll be cool about it, but I don't think I'll ever change my mind. I can read some of his poetry in the original Spanish--it's gorgeous. I'm really interested in more poets that aren't American or British--anybody have some recommendations?

Bad dog!

Ok, he's not really. It may be that I love my dog far more than I have loved any previous pet. He's so fun....not well-trained and obedient yet, but we're working on it. His name is Tater, which he came with from the Humane Society where we adopted him. He was used to it, so we just kept it (though it's definitely not what I would have chosen). He's a mix between a labrador and a Boston terrier bulldog, so he looks...well, I think he's cute, but I'm biased. He's got really big ears though. I love him muchly, and so he shall be showing up in blogs, I'm sure.

Post the First

So here's my blog named after a glorious Rilo Kiley song. It shall be about whatever I want it to be about -- pop culture, literature and poetry, gratuitous picture posts of my dog, rants about work-- so read it if you want, and no hard feelings if you move on.