Saturday, July 24, 2010


I've been working at Target for one month today. I like it a lot. It can be a little stressful sometimes, and the scheduling can be annoying, but overall, I enjoy going to work everyday. Not to mention it gives me a lot of exercise, between biking 4 miles there and back, and walking for almost the entire time I work.

The 10% discount is nice, too. Also, knowing what's on sale and what just went on clearance. For example, I bought an eggplant polo and a purple and green striped Tshirt for a total of $7 today. I put them on the clearance racks this morning. Can you tell I like purple?

Also, working at Target gives me an opportunity to interact with kids and regular people. At St. Olaf, things get a little isolated, and I interact with students and people with Ph. Ds. And students and doctors of philosophy are not regular people. So, my jobs let me interact with people whose life doesn't revolve around the Ivory Tower. Also, listening to kids whine "Daddy, I need a bike. Can we get this bike? I need it. Daddy, I need this bike!" or scream just to hear themselves scream reminds me that I can wait many many years to start thinking about kids.

Also, dog food is expensive. A reminder that I cannot afford a dog right now, even though I can't have one anyway. But still, I'd love to adopt a big ol' mutt or two. Or even foster an older dog.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Something Silly I Did Today

Welcome to the first edition of "Something _____ I Did Today," which will feature something odd or unusual or endearing or silly or bold or fill in the blank that I did that day.

Today's adjective is Silly.

It was a rather chilly day today, due to the considerable amount of rain last night. So I snuggled on the couch with my hunter green Snuggie, when I decided I needed Cocoa! So I got up, and made myself a hot mug of Suisse Mocha, from one of those International Coffee House tins. Yum!

Later, when I was putting dishes away, I found the tin in the silverware drawer. "How on Earth did you get in there?" I asked it.

It, of course, did not respond. I've gotten used to it. I'd be surprised if one did respond.

The way I figure, I was looking for a smaller spoon, and I know I have about 6 of them. Alas, I could only find two, and they were dirty when I was making my Suisse Mocha. Could I have been so fixated on finding my smaller spoons that I put my cocoa tin in the silverware drawer?

Probably. In any case, the cocoa tin was tucked very neatly into the front corner. I did a very nice job of putting it away, except it wasn't in the cupboard over the sink where it's supposed to go.

Target must be rubbing off on me. Even my misplaced items are put neatly away.

And so concludes my story of my silly act of the day.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Today, I found tickets from Bangkok to Tokyo and from Osaka to Minneapolis for a total of $1,070. Compared to other itineraries, this is about 30-50% of the cost of most trips. It made me so excited for January and February, that I made Pad Thai for dinner.

( It turned out pretty good. Nice and dry, but I think I added a little too much vinegar. )

In any case, I can't afford the plane tickets yet, but hopefully the price stays the same and/or goes down. All the flights are through Delta, which doesn't tickle my fancy, but I know I'll never be able to afford to fly Korean Air while in college, as much as I would love to.

Anyway, the flight leaves Osaka at around 6:50pm on a Saturday. It arrives in Minneapolis at around 6:20pm on Saturday. No, that's not a typo. We will be flying back in time. Muahaha.

Today's planning also inspired me to only bring carry-on luggage. While it will be wintery in Japan, Chiang Mai and Bangkok will be 80 and sunny. I can last on a few pairs of shorts, 1 pair of pants and 2 weeks worth of t-shirts, tank tops and 1 pea coat. With my netbook, a small amount of bathroom supplies (I can always buy more shampoo and toothpaste if needed), a book, textbooks and my DS, I'll have plenty of room for souvenirs! If I need to, I can check it on the way home if I buy more souvenirs than I intend (like I did in Slovenia, when I bought a giant purse just for souvenirs).

I only wish I could spend a couple days in Phuket. Ah well, I guess I'll just have to wait for my honeymoon to spend a week in a beach bungalow for $15/night in paradise. : )

Becoming a Cook... But Not Really

So, in the past 2 years, I've discovered that I really like cooking. I'm also not that bad at it. I have my misses, but everything I've made, I have enjoyed eating. Even the overdone, rock-like cookies and blander than bland soupy beans and rice.

I love cooking! I want to cook more! I wish I had more money so I could buy enough food to perfect recipes. At least I'll be living with 6 other people in a couple months so that I can test recipes on people with different taste buds than me. I am not so particular with eating. I do not care how something tastes as long as it doesn't taste too bad. Texture and smell are more important.

If I were going to lose a sense, it would be taste. I love being able to smell, but that's the one everyone picks if they had to choose to lose a smell. Taste is almost always voluntary, so I would be missing only what I chose to miss. We need to be able to smell. How would we tell if something was burning, or if there's a dead mouse in our dryer, or if we need to shower, or if a baby has a poopy diaper? Those are important things to be able to know, and we usually don't think to look to see if those things are happening without smelling the hint of it first. I guess people check diapers pretty often because babies poo a lot, but really, how often do you check your dryer for a dead mouse? Smell is so important!

I'd lose taste, because then I could eat anything as long as the texture and smell were all right. I wouldn't feel the need to eat chocolate chip cookies at 11:30pm or hash browns, bacon and eggs on a Sunday morning. I could just eat whatever and whenever was best for me. I guess that takes the pleasure out of eating, but taste isn't necessary. Being able to taste things won't save your life.

I guess that is why I shouldn't pursue cooking as a career. Cooking should be a hobby for me, since I am no perfectionist or purist. I'm just too practical. Safety and health first, then pleasure. Hopefully, they always go together, but the longer I can live, the longer I get to live life! I love being alive.

Saturday, July 17, 2010


Well, biking 8 miles 5 days a week and walking around for 4-8 hours 5 days a week is starting to show. My muscles are starting to become more toned on my legs, especially in my thighs. Even when I sit down, my legs don't do that thing where they pool out and look flabby. My belly paunch is also starting to diminish.

The khakis I bought in 9th grade, which have always fit me, are now starting to get a little big. I mean, I'm sure a washing them more often would make them a bit more snug, but this is kinda cool. I am slimming down. I suppose exercise really does work. I've never really tried to work out, like really. I mean, I exercised in my everyday car-less routine, but I tried to avoid sweat as much as possible. But now that I'm doing an hour of moderate-heavy exercise most days in a week, I'm starting to see results.

Cool. Probably part of it is that I haven't significantly increased my food intake from what I used to eat, so my net calories are probably zero or below most days. I'll have to mess around with it a bit and see what happens. Any suggestions for high calorie healthy snacks? Maybe I'll get protein shakes. Haha. Why are all the yummy snacks being packaged in 100 calorie servings?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A Minor Pet Peeve

Something that really annoys me are religious people who believe that God intervenes all the time, and that prayers work. Prayers (at least according to my beliefs and you are encouraged to think and believe for yourself) are just well wishes. Wishes don't come true. People make them come true.

"I found my phone! Thanks for your prayers! God's will and love is so great!"

Um, you found your phone because you looked for it. If God did exist, why would God care about your damn phone? If you really think that God helped you find your phone, you damn well better start using your phone for more than sending texts to your friends.

Some things have a legitimate air of mystery that could be Gods presence, if God does exist, such as untreated cancer disappearing or... well, that's all I can think of.

If you narrowly avoided an accident, why were you almost in an accident in the first place if God wanted you to survive it? If it's a test, why would God intervene on your behalf during a test?

I don't get it. You narrowly avoided an accident because you swerved at the right moment, and/or coincidence.

Now, I'm not saying don't pray for people if they don't work. I certainly keep people in mind if I know they're going through a hard time, but I am not so disillusioned to think that my positive thoughts in any way affect their situations (unless I think about it so much that I do something to help them).

Anyway, this is something I've been wanting to say for years, but posting a snarky skeptic response to someone's Facebook status is not the place to say it, so I'm saying it on my soapbox.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


I got my first bad sunburn of the summer today. I in no way expected to get sunburned when I left my apartment this afternoon, so I only had sunscreen on my face from my moisturizer.

Anyway, I walked a mile to campus to check my mail, and back. Then I walked to Econofoods and the Co-op for groceries and back. It totals about 6 miles of walking today in the afternoon sunlight. Why didn't I expect to be sunburned? I don't know.

It's not too painful, though. Not my worst sunburn. Not even in the top 5. It looks awful, though. It's on my shoulders, chest and upper back, minus where my tank top and bra straps were located. I'm sure it'll fade a bit by tomorrow, so only my roommate and a friend who stopped by got to see just how bad my sunburn is.

So, wear sunscreen! I'll probably have to get a few moles on my shoulders and arms removed in the next decade because I refused to wear sunscreen when I was younger, and now I'm just thoughtless. Be safe, and prevent skin cancer!

Sunday, July 11, 2010


So I've been biking 8 miles a day, 5 days a week. It's the quickest way to get to and from work, and is probably safer than walking at 11pm when I get done with work.

I am a slow biker. Haha. I prefer to take the back roads, but they're hillier than the main roads, making me even slower. Maybe its because I have a town bike instead of a mountain bike, and its not designed for speed. Also, this is the first time in a long time I've biked regularly, so my biking muscles aren't what they could be.

Although today, I was crossing highway 3 by Target on a crosswalk, and some lady taking a left turned right in front of me! I had to stop in the crosswalk or else she would have hit me. I know she saw me too. I yelled "What are you doing??!" at her, because her windows were open. I felt a little bad because her daughter was sitting in the car (although she was too young to be sitting in the front seat, so there's another reason that lady was dumb), but I guess this is my first road rage.

I generally mutter things under my breath at people (like the bikers who go through red lights. Stop signs are one thing when there are no cars, but going through a red light at an intersection is just rude and stupid), but I generally don't yell at people. Although, earlier this year, when I was walking to school, someone drove in front of me while I was halfway through the cross walk. I actually had to jump back a bit because they were so close. I yelled at them, but they probably didn't hear.

Anyway, overall I like biking, except the back of my head gets sweaty where the reflectors on my helmet are located. Also, biking into the wind really sucks. Still not sure how I'll get to Target in the winter, but I could probably bike still if I really wanted to. Transit and taxis will probably play a large role. It's $6 to get from Olaf to Target through First Choice Taxi. Not bad, considering they're almost on opposite sides of Northfield.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Weird dream

Last night, I had a dream that someone with my name, from my hometown who was living in Northfield died in a freak bike accident.

I then had to call everyone I know, and facebook and email, that I was, in fact, alive. I even wrote a letter to the Star Tribune, asking them to clarify that not-me went to a charter school and not Anoka, so that more people would be able to figure out it wasn't me.

Even my college announced my death erroneously, an awkward mistake.

But the weirdest part was, I went to her funeral, and most of the people there were there for me. I felt really guilty for not-me's family, but kind of pleased that so many people came to my funeral, despite my widespread attempts to spread the knowledge that I was alive.

What a weird, dream, eh? That's what happens when you've been having a 1am-10am sleep schedule, and try to go for a 10pm-6am schedule for one night instead.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Chocolate Strawberry Crepes

Hello all.

This morning for breakfast, I decided to make crepes (pronounced crep not crape or creep). I figured what better way to finish off my carton of strawberries before they went bad?

So, to make Chocolate Strawberry Crepes, you will need a mixing bowl, a whisk, a spatula or pancake turner, a skillet or 8+" frying pan, and a small saucepan.

Serves 4-6

Ingredients for the crepes:
2 eggs
1 cup flour
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup water
dash of salt
2 T melted butter
1 T sugar (optional)

Ingredients for the sauce:
1/2 carton or so of strawberries, washed, cored and sliced
1/4 cup of chocolate chips
1 T sugar
1/2 cup water

To make crepes, you mix the eggs, salt and butter with the whisk in the mixing bowl. Then, add small amounts of the flour and milk alternately. If you throw it all in at once, it gets lumpy. Then add the water and sugar, and mix until smooth. Cover, and refrigerate for an hour.

In the meantime, put the strawberries, sugar and water in the saucepan and simmer on medium-low heat for an hour. Mash it up pretty good, too! Stir and mash more from time to time as its cooking. When you're about to start cooking the crepe, add the chocolate chips, mix well. Once they're all melted in to the strawberry sauce, remove from heat.

Anyway, to finish crepes, heat up a lightly greased skillet on the stove. Then put 1/4-1/3 cup (depending on how big you want the crepes, and how big your pan is. I had a 10-inch skillet, so I used 1/3) of batter on the skillet. Pick it up and swirl it around so the batter spreads out in a largish circle.

When bubbles appear, and the edges darken a bit, gently loosen the edges and skillfully turn over the crepe. (Note: skillfully happens eventually. My first one was a disaster) I used whole wheat flour, so they were a bit easier to turn than white flour, but they probably won't splatter all over the place, either. Cook for a while longer, than transfer to another plate. Repeat until batter is gone.

Now, on a separate plate from your stack of crepes, put one crepe. On 1/4 of the crepe, put a filling of your choice (I used chocolate pudding, but you can put the sauce inside as well, or ice cream, or PB or nutella or etc). Fold it in half, and in half again. Repeat until all the crepes are filled and folded. Then spread the strawberry chocolate sauce over them.

Serve and enjoy!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Bucket List: Kiss Memorably and Meaningfully in the Rain

So, some of my posts will be "bucket list" posts, some things that I think I should do pretty soon, before I kick the bucket. Which isn't going to be soon, but kal ho naa ho (tomorrow may never come, you know, the movie I posted about last time?). In any case, who knows when I'll have the opportunities or spare time to work on this when I'm all grown up?

First on my list? Kiss in the rain. And not just any kiss in the rain, but a kiss with someone meaningful at an exhilarating and meaningful moment.

Actually, this has already happened. I just remembered as I was typing this. There was a crazy and beautiful rainstorm by a lake, and my high school sweetheart was the kissee. Wild, crazy, adrenaline-high, once-in-a-lifetime teenage love? How much more meaningful can you get?

Awesome. I am kicking this bucket list's ass!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Kal Ho Naa Ho

I watched an epic movie today. Kal Ho Naa Ho (which in English means Tomorrow May Never Come).

It's a really complicated story (the movie is 3 hours and 8 minutes long), but a beautiful story of love, sacrifice, duty and family. It's a Bollywood film, so there's dancing and singing too!

I highly recommend it if you have a few hours to spare. There's a handy intermission built into the film, so its a good place to pause it.

I laughed a lot, I smiled through most of it. I cried through the last hour or so.