12.31.01 >1504

For some reason, it's the expanding fireball after the second Tower was hit that will forever stay in my mind to remind me of 2001. Granted, this year wasn't just about 9/11 - I mean, we have the inauguration of a controversial presidential election candidate and some other things to remember, but that day has caused a Before/After split in photo commemorations of 2001. Speaking of which, the NYTimes has an awesome photo slideshow (look in the upper left corner of the main section). Check it out.

Now I must bid you a good afternoon/evening so I can get ready for tonight. We'll be house-hopping before we head for the church for maybe a game of hide-and-seek in the dark and some other fun things. Whatever you do tonight, be safe and watch out for drunk drivers.

Happy New Year's!


Hannah is one awesome poet. Go read her stuff here.

12.29.01 >2022

I found this old article and decided to give it a title of my own : "Why Ann Landers Needs Internet Access." I mean, seriously. I generally find her column amusing; ditto to sister Abby. (Yeah, I guess this means she finally DOES have Net access! One way or another, anyway.)


If you were to go to a self-made prison for one entire year, what ten items would you take with you?

~ * ~

Okay ... I ain't a staunch feminist, though I agree that women still have some issues when it comes to having the same salary as men and whatnot, but it works both ways, doesn't it? I find it amazing that the "feminism movement's" critics are coming under so much attack just because they disagree with feminist's principles. In a follow-up, the author of this column replies to an angry letter she received to her critique of "feminist male-bashing."

12.28.01 >0000

This week's

1. What was your biggest accomplishment this year? Passing Reporting and starting Creative Slips! Woohoo!

2. What was your biggest disappointment? Not going to Colorado during the summer to work as an intern for a friend's magazine. Yeah, that sucked. I got stuck filing papers instead at an office, though that wasn't too bad when I found out my boss was a Christian and one encouraging lady ...

3. Will you be making any New Year's resolutions? Resolutions just aren't my thing. So, no, I won't be making any.

4. Where do you wish you were celebrating? Now there's a good question. I don't really have a destination in mind, but if I could, I'd like to go back to the country house (if you're reading this, you know what I'm talking about) and just while away the hours 'til midnight watching the stars again. Someplace quiet ... maybe 'tis a koo-el thing to throw in "cozying up in front of a crackling fire" for good measure. Or maybe have a Movie Nite?

5. What do you plan to do for New Year's Eve? My answers for the previous question are considered moot here ... I'm gonna be going to a sleepover my youth group's having. That translates into only two or three hours of actual sleep and the rest of the time we'll be goofing off. And if this sleepover's anything like the last one we had ... *grin* Bring it on!

12.27.01 >2232

So what the heck is a wookalar? you ask.

As I said yesterday, it started at youth camp, though from what Larry tells me, it actually happened much earlier than that, beginning with a conversation our youth pastor's dad had with a few of the younger members of the youth group. (Ages range between 11 and 17 in this group.) This conversation was then recounted for our viewing pleasure (and total amusement) during Skit Night at youth camp, and then we finally found out where the term "wookalar" first came from last night. Btw, in reference to the aforementioned conversation, IIRC, it went something like this :

Person #1 : So what is a wookalar?
Person #2 : I dunno. Marduke said something about seeing it running around here (at the church) last night ...
Person #3 (horrified) : You're not serious!?
Person #1 (with a solemn nod) : Sure am.
Person #2 : But what does a wookalar look like?
Good question. A wookalar, in truth, was a creature with a pig's face and a man's body in The Private Eyes (which we watched last night, too!). We saw nary a trace of it until the two klutzy detectives were finally on their way to a supposedly "happily ever after" ending ... which ended up never materializing because the wookalar suddenly appeared in the back of their Rolls Royce and nearly made 'em careen off the road. The whole movie was rather hilarious, in a dumb way. Good fun to watch while you're munching on pizza with forty-four other youngins.


A bumper sticker worth noting for its humor : "I can only please one person a day. Today isn't your day. Tomorrow isn't looking good either."

Don't worry, I haven't forgotten about the wookalar yet!

12.26.01 >2246

The wookalar has struck again.

It's funny how this whole thing got started ... first it was mentioned at summer camp, and then all of a sudden we hear that the origin of the wookalar would be revealed tonight. And it was hilarious. More tomorrow ...


Another highlight of Christmas 2001 : the blinking Rudolph-the-Red-Nosed-Reindeer nose.

Never try to put this thing on a photophobic person, whether she's wearin' red or not. Maybe I should also mention that I finally did it of my own volition, just because I feared my uncle would try to get several of my cousins to hold me down while he put it on me himself.

Did you know, though, that it makes a great eyepatch if you want to be a Borg for Halloween next year?


Perhaps it's a bit ludicrous to write about Christmas now that it's over, but my focus is its infusion into the winter season. That, and I'll take advantage of the excuse that the hectic pace of the past couple days had left me no time to muse about the Christmas spirit. So there!

I don't know if there's any great way to describe Christmas. Some purists may gripe about the commercialism related to buying gifts for loved ones during this season, but you can't really separate that from the act of giving gifts itself. (So get over it!)

However, there are tons of emotions and feelings one should take the liberty in exploring when the Christmas season arrives ... if only to save yourself from insanity during the frenetic dealings leading up to Christmas Day, and if only to create your own definition for "Christmas spirit." Here's mine, and excuse the gushing sentimentality :

First of all, snow. Winter for some o' you means snow. Here on the coast of California, it's rain, and even though it sure doesn't compare to that feeling of having snow flakes gently touch your face with their icy fingers, or that "divine silence" as they're poured out from heaven above, it still signifies the arrival of Old Man Winter. I've only experienced snow once so far, and I cherish the memories (esp. that of the huge snowball fight we had the day we left snow camp). Second of all ... the pleasure of giving. Perhaps it's a bit overstated, and perhaps for some it's even become something of a cliche. Giving, rather than receiving. It's the glow of delight upon the receiver's face and the grin on mine that makes gift-giving all the more special ... no matter what time of year it happens to be.

I don't try to get any tingly, temporary feeling that might give me a brief sense of hyped-up "Oh, it's Christmas! Woohoo!" fervor, but I do enjoy the little things that makes this holiday so special : the laughter and chatter of family and friends, the cider and eggnog, the lights, the decorated tree, the carols.

May every Christmas be worth cherishing in your mind and heart ... and may the Spirit of Christmas be celebrated year-round.


A highlight of my Christmas this year : the crawling sheep. Yes, the crawling sheep. You heard me right.

My sisters were part of this Christmas play their church put on for their Christmas Eve service, and in the scene where the shepherds get a visit from the angels, they used all the babies in the church as the sheep. No, they didn't crawl off the stage, but the cottonballs glued to their jumpsuits started to fall off, and they kept crawling into the little "campfire" they were kneeling around. And then to make it worse, when they were all s'posed to get off the stage, one of the sheep got left behind and had to be rescued by an angel. Not in the script, and certainly not in the Scriptures, but it was good fun for us in the audience.

I also found it hilarious that my sisters got the same parts they had last year : one was Mary, the other was the innkeeper's wife. Same lines, same everything. Umm, yeah.

12.25.01 >0950

12.24.01 >0013

Just got back from seeing Behind Enemy Lines; both Ocean's Eleven and Lord of the Rings were voted off the island. If you ask me, the tracker (Sasha) on Lt. Chris Burnett's heels (Burnett played by Owen Wilson) was the better actor. Wilson needs some serious help in that department! However, I s'pose this deficiency on his part eliminated the "machisimo" trait you see in a lot of actors who pick up roles in action/suspense movies. Ah, whatever. I still say it could've been a better movie if Wilson hadn't tried too hard.

We went mudding this afternoon - I hope they make it a Sunday habit from here on out! Four cars went up to this little dirt bike track they got out near Tracy, and what fun it was to swerve through those huge ole puddles. YEEEEHAH!

12.21.01 >1720

*sigh* I am grinning like a fool and don't care who notices. Fellowship of the Ring was wonnnnnnderful! Since I'd gotten the soundtrack a few weeks before, I listened carefully during different parts of the movie just to see if they fit with the scene that each track was supposed to go with - and it turned out wonderful. Can't wait for Saruman to get his butt kicked in Two Towers - though I must admit that Christopher Lee plays a great bad guy!


In your winter finery,
You make the world's gloom
Flee like wailing shadows.

My snow angel,
My shimmering love
With silver eyes and diamond wings!

Welcome to our Wonderland.



I hate my computer. (Where is Gimli's axe when I need it?) Second time around is ... what? Worth the loss of the first post? It'd better be. *glowering at non-cooperative computer behind me*

~ * ~

It's actually 10:30pm on Thursday, but since Heather's two hours before me in time zones, she already had the Friday Five up. And by the way, she's got Creative Slips up as today's link in the left column. Wooooohoo!

1. What is the weirdest thing you've ever eaten? Fried chicken with strawberry ice cream. Yummy, but weird. Gross yourself out, Emeril.

2. Name one (material) thing you can't live without. Believe it or not, it would have to be lip balm.

3. Name something you've always wanted to do but didn't have time for. Have a movie night and maybe fall asleep on the sofa in the middle of a film. I'm usually parked in front of my computer monitor, not the TV screen.

4. What outrageous thing do you wish you had the nerve to do? Kiss a guy I don't know. It'd definitely be very uncharacteristic!

5. How do you plan to spend your weekend? For this question I'll just pretend it's Friday already. I'm plannin' to see Fellowship of the Ring with a friend and her family this afternoon. You've no idea how psyched I am for this movie! Saturday I'll probably be going around with Lare, since he has the car (and hopefully no mishaps occur this time!). Sunday I'll be goin' to Sunset, of course. Sometime this weekend I'll have to do the rest of my Christmas shopping, as well. Fun and busyness mixed together all around.