October 2008

hypertext transfer protocol

Eric telling a story at Platteu Open MicAllison
Cary holding SMYRC's money

Disclaimer—I happen to be a fan of parenthetical commentary and use it way too much in my writing. I apologize in advance.

Here’s some coverage of an event that happened quite awhile ago, but it’s deserving of mention: The Platt-Howard Drag Show (I’ve got some snippets about it in the video section as well). Lewis and Clark has an annual drag show, planned and executed by the staff of the Platt-Howard residence hall. Aside from being a fun, awesome event, we raise money for SMYRC, the Sexual Minority Youth Resource Center. It’s an organization in Portland (Sadly, the only organization of its kind in Oregon) that caters to the needs and hardships of sexual minority youth. It’s a great resource for people and if you’re interested in helping them out or giving them some money, check out their site. Enough with that plug. DRAG SHOW. So, as a CLA on the Platt-Howard staff, I spent a good portion of September gearing up for this event. We got some help with money and planning from Unisex, the Dean of Students, and the Office for Multicultural Affairs. One of the great things about this campus (I guess it might be like this elsewhere, but I can only really speak for my experience at LC) is that if you have an event you want to plan, you CAN find a way to get it to happen. There are so many departments with money that are generally willing to help students who approach them. Many of our bigger events here are the product of extreme collaboration, and that just makes them even more awesome. We ended up having the show in the Trail Room, a cafeteria downstairs in our student center. Tired of the more traditional drag show format of years past (yeah, I did just use “traditional” as an adjective for “drag show”), we decided to make it into a dance party as well. Liv, our CLC (aka “RD”) asked her talented DJ friend K-Money to MC the show and provide some tunes. It ended up being a really successful event–I think we raised around $550 for SMYRC, plus it was extremely fun. It’s always good when your events don’t flop.

In the week leading up to fall break, I was lucky enough to attend three concerts (and for a total of $10!). Portland is a pretty great city for shows, as they are generally pretty inexpensive. One problem you might run into is that there are a lot of 21+ venues (and some bands ONLY play 21+ venues in Portland—I’m looking at you, !!!), but most of the larger acts make sure to have all-ages shows. On Monday, I serendipitously scored tickets to the sold-out-for-months Sigur Rós concert. A friend of a friend was going to see the concert, but ended up not being able to go, so I was offered the tickets as a birthday-and-Christmas present. That concert was amazing (and I got the setlist!). Probably the second or third greatest concert I’ve ever experienced. So, anyway, went to that with some friends from school. On my way back to the car (raining, of course), I realized that I had parted with my keys at some point in the evening. That is a pretty awful feeling, by the way. I went back to the venue with my friends, begged some bouncers to let me in, then scrounged around on the floor, sifted through inches of confetti (part of the encore), and eventually gave up. From there, I called my good friend Lillie Mae who, with the help of the CLA on duty, acquired my extra car keys from my room and then drove them down to me. In the meantime, my friends and I waited in the lobby of the 4-star Heathman Hotel. We played the “movie game” (where you connect two movies together via common actors) for about 20 minutes until the security guard kicked us out for loitering. That was fine, though, because by the time we were back on the sidewalk, Lillie Mae pulled up with my keys. As I was trudging back to my car once again, I had an epiphany. I had slipped in a mud puddle earlier in the evening. With nothing to lose, I managed to locate the mud puddle (by the way, it is pretty hard to find a specific mud puddle in a large park when it’s raining) and sifted through it with my hands. Sitting at the bottom, waiting for me and probably shooting me an anthropomorphic “HAHA,” were my keys. Having found my keys, I am able to assess that I had a great night at the concert of one of my favorite bands… and have great friends who went way out of their way to help me at midnight on a school night. That made me feel pretty good. Thanks L&C.

Tuesday started out with a midterm in Introduction to International Affairs. I’m not planning to study abroad, so I need to fulfill my IA requirement by taking courses here. It’s an interesting enough subject, but I don’t really like it. Just not for me. Anyway, that midterm went pretty well-ish, I think. I had studied, but there was still one question that I felt was pretty ‘iffy’. Oh well, it’s only 15% of the grade. Hey: What’s the perfect way to celebrate the successful completion of a midterm? Punk rock with friends. Well, gypsy-punk, to be more specific. Earlier in the week, my friend/concertbuddy Dith and I won tickets from KLC, the Lewis and Clark pseudo-radio station (though it’s cool none the less), to see Gogol Bordello. The concert was loud, crazy, and a great way to unwind from a day packed with academia. It was also the worst-smelling concert audience of which I have ever been a part. I think that added to the overall ambiance of the night, though. Afterwards, my friends and I hit up The Roxy, an awesome diner on 11th and Stark downtown. It is one of the three favorite 24-hour diners of Lewis and Clark students (the other two being Banning’s Restaurant and Pie House and The Original Hotcake House across the Ross Island Bridge). The Roxy is probably the best because it has great decorations (life-size plaster Jesus with a neon halo, for example), the best Jukebox, and they serve Voodoo Doughnuts, not to mention they have a sassy waitstaff.

I’ve got a midterm in my Computer Networks class. We’ll see how that goes. Quick! What’s the HTTP status code for “OK?” If you said “200,” you are right. I could probably talk all day and night about Computer Science, by the way. Now, someone help me understand node objects in a Document Object Model.

now playing in my ears: “The Dead Flag Blues” by Godspeed You! Black Emperor

16 October 2008

Je suis en retard!

Bonjour! You know some days feel more like “college” than others. Today is one of those days. This morning my alarm clock mysteriously didn’t sound, (though I distinctly remember setting it last night) and I woke up at 8:44. This would not have been an unreasonable time except that I have Exploration and Discovery at 9:10. Coincidentally, I also happened to have a midterm in that class today. Needless to say, I rushed through my daily routine and, thankfully, made it on time. I was double relieved when my heart rate slowed to a normal pace and I succeeded in writing a coherent essay. After lunch, I also had to meet with my French professor for an oral midterm exam, which went really well! I am going to a meeting on Friday to get some info on a potential double major in SOAN and French…

My bikeandrew & deannaLiam, Logan, and KedwardNow I am sitting in Maggie’s (the café on campus) listening to Andrew Bird and reflecting on my wonderful Fall Break. I finally had the chance to take my bike out on the town. Some friends and I biked down to Sellwood (a neighborhood in Portland). We hit up Sellwood Bikes, where I purchased yellow handle bar tape. My friends Logan and Deanna also have blue bikes with yellow tape, so we are in the process of creating a bike brigade. Any logo ideas? We also went to the Goodwill where you pay by the pound and loaded up on sweaters and boots for the cold season, which is fast approaching! Before heading back, we got bagels and hummus at a coffee shop called The Ugly Mug. The coffee was great but the light switch for the bathroom is located outside the bathroom, which was a great source of confusion and subsequent humiliation. Thus I am conflicted about saying it is a new favorite coffee shop. The Willamette River

The Show!That night we took the MAX to north Portland to go to a show. The venue was called The Coop, and it’s basically a communal-living house that the tenants open up as a venue for indie and punk rock shows. The inside is very eclectic: multi-colored walls, record players, funky art, mismatched furniture, a pool table, Chinese lanterns- it looked like a very lived-in art gallery. There were tons of people so it was pretty packed, but the show was so great! We were seeing Paul Baribeau, a folk-punk singer-songwriter (http://www.myspace.com/paulbaribeau), along with two local bands: Hey Tiger!, a trio featuring a saw-player, a guitar, and a glockenspiel (http://www.myspace.com/heytigerband); and Destroy Nate Allen, a punk-rock husband and wife who made everyone form a circle around them as they danced in the middle, playing a guitar and a tambourine and singing punk-rock songs about loving each other, being uncool, and social justice. (http://www.myspace.com/destroynateallen) It was a very intimate and interactive show, and I hope to return to the venue soon.Destroy Nate Allen

With two midterms under my belt, and yet another week of dry skies, I’m feeling good. I need to get to work on my Cultural Anthropology paper before my Self Defense for Women class tonight, so here is where we part, mes amis. Feel free to shoot me an email to ask about the joys of celebrating holidays at alternate dates, riding your bike without mittens, working your angles, or to share anecdotes about sleeping in the airport.

kkucera@lclark.edu

15 October 2008

Back in the swing of things.

I’m currently sitting in my room and listening to a tour group walk past my window. It makes me remember all the craziness of the dreaded college search, and realize how content I am with where I ended up. I mean, I had to go through alot of stress and hard decision making what with transferring and all, but in the end I think I’m in the right place. College is all about what you want it to be. Sometimes you’ve really gotta make a conscious effort to step back and get your ducks in a row, but that’s what life’s all about right? Enough of this philosophizing, moving onto my past week…

Fall break came and went, and I am now back in the swing of things here at school. It seems weird to already be part way through the semester and already have to be thinking about next semester’s classes! Advising appointments are upon us and I am totally looking forward to signing up for an awesome spring schedule. I’m also waiting to hear about (hopefully) my abroad program for next fall. I have always had this interest in Ireland, and I thought it would be the greatest to be able to study there one day. Though LC offers a wide range of fantastic abroad programs, Ireland is not one of them, so I had to go through another facilitator. The one thing I’ve heard from most college students (including my sister) is that if you have the opportunity to study abroad, then you should take it. I’ve had to fill out alot of paperwork and jump through alot of hoops, and now I’m just crossing my fingers. My advisor has been great though, and I know I have alot of support for my case, so it should turn out well. Let me just take a minute here and say how much I have enjoyed all of my professors at LC. Most of them have made my classes really interesting and are always available when I’ve needed help. I’ve had to come to terms with the fact that most of the time I need alot of help, and it’s good to know that I can always go work things out with my professor. That’s another perk of small class sizes - there’s no hiding, but you have to opportunity to form some good connections.

 I need to back up though, because I don’t think I can post this blog without sharing some amazing pictures from fall break. On Saturday my mom and sister and I hiked Mt. Pilchuck up north in WA, and it was absolutely gorgeous. We weren’t the only ones out enjoying the good weather though, my mom referred to it as “highway hiking”. I was impressed because most of the people we saw on the trail made it to the top, and pretty much the entire thing was icey. On the way down I gave up trying to pick a dry spot and instead just squatted down and slid down the rocks. It was an adventure for sure. Here are some of the more magnificent pictures:

Sitting near a stream ; Ice designs ; Rocky trail ; Icicles ; At the summit ; Mt. Baker ; Sunset at the trailhead

Until next week,

Jess

15 October 2008

Fall Break was made for Birthdays??

Fall Break was a BLAST!!! It was great to have a mini break from my studies, since as we all know it can be a bit draining at times. Even though I stayed on campus, I still managed to have a lot of fun…. So don’t always feel obligated to always leave campus

skate.jpg

when there’s a break. Most if not all of my friends stayed on campus as well and we celebrated not 1 not 2 but 3 birthdays!!! I am obsessed with birthdays (you should have seen me on mine). I don’t know what it is or where it came from but birthdays always get me extremely excited. So luckily, three of my friends were celebrating birthdays over fall break so my friends and I had a weekend filled with activities.For birthday number one (which kind of tied in with birthday number 2 since they were on the same day) we went rollerblading in Sellwood, which is not far from the campus at all. You just hop on the RAZ that well… goes to Sellwood dinner1.jpgdirectly from campus, it’s literally as easy as that!! We ultimately wanted to go to the amusement park, but unfortunately it was closed for the fall but we still had enough fun at the skating rink. I think the last time I went rollerblading I was about ten years old, so it’s been a while. I will admit, I was a bit rusty but you really do get the hang of it after a while.

For birthdays number two and three, we went to dinner at Romano’s Macaroni Grill located downtown.. The food there is really tasty, there’s a little something for everyone if you’re kind of picky about your food but do resto2.jpgkeep in mind it is an Italian inspired restaurant, so if you don’t like pasta then you probably won’t want to check it out. But I’m always satisfied with the cuisine there and the best part… you get to color on the tables… what more could u want =)….

At the end of the night, we went over to my friend’s apartment in Roberts. She’s a junior and one of the beccabday.jpgbest parts about LC is that the small community really does govern the way in which I made friends here. I remember in high school I was solely friends with people in my own year rather than in the year before or after me. At LC it’s completely different; even though the majority of my friends are sophomores like me, I still have a large number that are freshmen, juniors and seniors. We’re all different, whether we’re from different countries, ethnicities or backgrounds, but it’s great having those different perspectives to analyze and rethink your own. My absolute favorite part of fall break was playing TABOO… I love taboo and even though my team lost on more than one occasion, I still had the most fun losing/ coming inscott.jpg second place. I was taught not to be a sore loser, and well I really am not that good at games and yet I still enjoy playing all the time.

Well I must depart until next week of course…keminiman.jpg

Remember to shoot me an email if you have any questions.. I’d be glad to answer all of them. tfm@lclark.edu

Be safe!! Check out the pics….

15 October 2008

Yup… its a blog.

Woah!  So much has happened in such a short amount of time!  I really don’t know where to begin; how should I bring you into my life?  What tales should I tell you, to impress you, astonish you, lure you into reading more of what I have say?  Lets start at the beginning:
New Student Trips (NSTs) are probably the best way to start off a college career.  I backpacked the Wallowa Mountains, which was tight.  We hiked and hiked, and ate, slept under the stars, cooked delicious food, swam in alpine lakes, told stories and basically just had a great time.  If hiking isn’t your thing there were rafting trips, kayaking trips and trips in Portland focused on serving the community.  I highly recommend going on a NST, it’s a great way to meet a few people before meeting a lot of people.

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Well, the trip was over and we all settled down and got right into scholastics (only half serious).  Orientation was basically organized chaos.  There was so much going on all the time and no way that you could get to everything.  Finally said goodbye to mom and pops, and then relaxed—well for about a day and then classes began.  Classes aren’t bad at all though.  I mean sure, there is a lot of work to do, but it’s all interesting.  After class, there are never ending possibilities to keep you busy.  Currently I am playing varsity tennis, take part in the climbing club and paddle club and I DJ a radio show Monday nights from 11pm to 1am with my pal Nate.  I advise all of you to tune in at www.klcradio.net.  This weekend the climbing club is taking a trip out to Smith Rock, which should be sick but I’m going to skip it to see the Blue Scholar and Common Market show.
Oh boy, life has been crazy since college started.  Good crazy though, don’t you worry yourself I’m not actually crazy.  I guess I’ll just have to tell you more next week.  I hope you semi-enjoyed what I had to say.  Hit me up if you want, kberger@lclark.edu.  Stay fresh.

14 October 2008