I found this poster rolled up and damp in wreckage of our apartment, and it wasn't in too bad a shape so I let it dry out and scanned it as best I could. (It's bigger than my scanner, so this isn't quite the whole thing.) This is the place I lived in grad school. I know some of you know what a "cooperative" means in this context, but in case you don't: it really is pretty much self-governed, mostly by committee, in the case of a big place like this one. There are elected committee chairs and director and treasurer and so forth. Each resident has at least one assigned job, like sweeping the hall or helping cook dinner or taking minutes at board meetings. I think everybody was supposed to do four hours of work a week. I loved living there and got really into all the governance stuff - I was on the board of directors and later was treasurer, and finally ran for director (somewhat against my better judgment) and ended up losing by one vote, which was probably for the best.
The Ark is still around, but nowadays it's called Pearl Street Co-op. (Scroll down and there's a lot of pictures. It looks like the common areas have been remodeled, but the rooms look about the same.) I heard, a couple of years after I had left, that things got really chaotic there and that it finally got so bad that they shut the place down for a semester. So it's not really surprising that when they re-opened it, they gave it a new name. I think "The Ark" went perfectly with its old hippy-dippy reputation - which believe me was well-deserved.
Oh, and before this place was the Ark, it was a girls' dormitory which catered to sorority-girl types. Farrah Fawcett is supposed to have lived there in the late 60s.
(I don't know if you guys have been enjoying these nostalgia-themed entries, but I've been enjoying writing them. As long as I keep scanning pictures and so forth, especially, you will probably keep seeing them!)
There has been an ongoing discussion in my department about the phrase "herding cats" - most of my co-workers weren't familiar with it, which is a bit odd because it seems like I've been hearing it for years. It's an interesting concept to try to explain - "Well, cats aren't herd animals, right? So what happens when you try to herd them?" I forgot all about the Super Bowl ad from a few years back but one of my co-workers came across it. I'm putting the link here because it's still a funny ad. (And it worked for me so hopefully you won't get rickrolled.)
Oh, I'm about to find out for myself about the health of the Houston real estate market - the townhouse is going on the market in the next few days. If they post pictures online I'll put up a link. It's just a little two-bedroom townhouse but it looks pretty good. (mslilly- who I think is the only person on my friendslist who lives in that area - you know anybody who's looking for a townhouse in Clear Lake?)
wallpaper (Galleria at Christmas)
Originally uploaded by Mellicious.
This is the wallpaper on my computer right now - it's an image that really says Christmas to me. It's the Galleria in Houston, all decked out for the holidays. Usually I go up there shopping once between Thanksgiving and Christmas, even if I don't really need anything. It just puts me in the holiday mood. (However, if you're a person who hates crowds, I don't recommend it. You'll just think it's a nightmare.)
I guess this is supposed to say Christmas in somebody's mind, too, but it's just too damn weird for me:
(from here) (I got to see it in person. It's just as scary as you think.)
Who buys things like this? I seriously don't know. And it plays the Longhorn fight song???
Remember that I did go to Texas. I do consider myself a fan. But lemme tell you about the fight song. It's called "Texas Fight" - very imaginatively. It's sung, or shouted (often by less-than-sober undergraduates) with lots of waving of the Hook 'em Horns sign, and it has words like this:
Texas fight, Texas fight,
Oh, it's Texas that we love best,
Hail, hail, the gang's all here,
And it's goodbye to all the rest.
Only nobody says that "Hail, hail, the gang's all here" part -- or at least they didn't when I was in school. At the time, everybody yelled, "Give 'em hell! Give 'em hell! Make 'em eat shit!" over that part, and I mean, that was what I was taught at freshman orientation, so it was more or less official. (No, I am absolutely not kidding.) By the time I was in graduate school, though, somebody had decided that wasn't very polite, and they were trying to get people to say, "Give 'em hell! Give 'em hell! We're number one!" but I don't know how successful they were at that. (I haven't been to a UT football game since the 80s. I watch the games on TV sometimes but who can tell what they're saying?)
Alessa's Luxon armor
Originally uploaded by Mellicious.
So here's my other set of new armor, for Alessa the warrior. This is only "1.5k" armor where Rima's is 15k - in other words, it was a lot cheaper. I might have gotten her 15k armor too, except that there wasn't any that I really liked that much. But I did like this one - the combination of spiky things and fringe is sort of interesting. (This is Luxon armor, where Rima's is Kurzick. The Luxons and the Kurzicks are the two warring "factions" in GuildWars Factions. They won't talk to you if you get too friendly with the other side - but luckily they don't seem to care if you're wearing the other side's armor.)
Col has been in to play GuildWars for a little while the last two nights, by the way. It sounds like they're working him pretty hard. (I tend to think of conventions as something you shouldn't really have to work at, but I suppose that somebody has to do the work, even there.)
guest appearance by my husband
Originally uploaded by Mellicious.
Rob loves this picture.
This is my quilt, which now has a binding - see the dark pink around the edge? Quilting 101: the traditional way to do a binding is to sew a doubled piece of fabric to the front, then pull it around to the back and whip it down by hand. And despite my avowed hatred for all forms of handwork, I have finished every quilt I have made this way. I don't know why. I guess just because I think it looks better that way. Anyway, in the picture it is just sewn to the front. It will be MUCH narrower than that when it's finished. Well under half an inch.
I missed the whole first half of the Texas-LSU game. I gather it was very close the whole way. I listened to most of the 2nd half on the radio (while I was sewing binding), then I went downstairs and watched the end with Mom and Art. I can't say I'm totally heartbroken. They were in the top 8, after all. Now I will have to root for LSU, I guess!
Columbine (who is such an LSU fan that he didn't know they played today, incidentally) sent me an invitation to play Guild Wars Factions this weekend, since he knew I have been interested in playing. They were having a preview-type thing. It was a good way to test it out, I think. Despite my subpar video card and my (horrors) incredibly slow dialup connection, it worked pretty well. He took me around tonight - in a virtual way - and gave me a tour. I have never played a "real" MMORPG before (Dofus and Kingdom of Loathing don't really count, I think) and it is quite a bit different. But I was starting to get the hang of it.
(I am retiring the Longhorn icon for the year. You shouldn't have to look at it for a while unless Texas happens to win the College World Series again - highly unlikely, I think. University of Texas Athletics has had a pretty good year, haven't they? but I don't think we can expect it to continue indefinitely.)
I watched most of Texas' game yesterday - it went much better than the first one. I guess it's better that they improve, right? Then Rob dragged me away from Dofus to go for a walk. The weather has been weird - sunny part of the time, then an hour later stormy. And when we got out to walk, finally, it was back in stormy mode. It wasn't actually raining, though, so we walked anyway. It made for an interesting walk, but it wasn't unpleasant. The wind was coming in off the Gulf and so it was a crosswind - it wasn't like we had to walk against it.
I can't really remember what I did last night, which probably means it was mostly more Dofus. I took a few days off from playing it last week, and I was thinking that meant I was tired of it, but evidently not. I came back and started doing different things - there's a new area and a bunch of new quests, and I worked on those, and then started fighting higher-level monsters in the pay area, so at least for now I am interested again.
(Has Oral Roberts ever been in the NCAA tourney before? They don't exactly seem like somebody who'd normally be there, even as a 16 seed.)
(And yes, I know my icon is the wrong sport, but I don't have any basketball icons. I could use my UT icon, and I'm sure I will, later. Unless they lose!)