April 2010

The Long Morrow

You know its finals when…

  •  You walk into the Library at 8:45 am on a Thursday and all the tables are full
  •  Your friends who never study are caught with books in hand
  •  People constantly have a slightly panicked look about them (at least if you’re me)
  •  Cleaning your room no longer seems a necessity
  • Professor’s offices are the place to be on a Friday/ Saturday afternoon

Ok, I am out. But that should give you some idea of what finals are like, all of the sudden now is the moment to finish projects and remember everything you’ve forgotten. Reading days are turning out to be quite busy for me this year. Tomorrow is the annual Political Science department bbq, Sunday I have my Scotland meeting and I am working in the Math Skills center for a couple of hours, and oh yeah I have to study…
So I am feeling a little frantic at the moment, but as long as I can make it through until Monday and turn in my take home final for Presidential Politics I will be on the downhill side of my second year of college.
Sitting here taking a break from studying has led me to offer some advice to future college students—fire alarms are bad, we all hate them, especially when we have wet hair or were in the shower…(yes this happened Thursday night where as I had to stand outside for about 20 minutes in the cold). So, for the advice part—don’t burn things, if you are cooking watch your food and if your food starts smoking don’t just leave it, open a window because burning popcorn/toast/any other food will cause the smoke alarm to go off which will make your hall-mates strongly dislike you if they find out the culprit. Speaking of making people dislike you…I also advise remembering that the Library is a quiet place to study, not have a phone conversation or chat with your friends about your new boyfriend. This will make everyone much happier and save you having to be glared at or mentioned in the Pioneer Log’s backdoor “you caught my eye” section [the section of the paper where people put funny “ads” for people they “like” though really the only way to get in is if you have friend who thinks its funny…the quote in question said “You: Upperclassmen complaining about noisy freshmen in the library. ME: keep your own classmates in check before you talk crap”]. Tragically they don’t post the backdoor on the Pio Log website, or I would link you there.

Anyway, since this is probably my penultimate blog entry (I have always wanted to use that word in a sentence) I thought I would offer my list of college essentials for the Freshman year
1. Plate/cup/bowl/mug/fork/spoon, or just general kitchen items. I didn’t think I would need them, and then my roommate and decided to get ice cream one night and let me tell you the bio-degradable spoons in Maggies are not the same.Cold hands in Copeland (the dorm)
2. A bookshelf (or milk crate) if you live in a dorm that doesn’t have shelving (like Stewart Odell Akin etc) after storing your books in a big stack underneath your bed for a couple of months you will begin to wish you had a better way to store them (unless you’re my roommate who doesn’t use the bookshelf for books she actually needs for class—not my style though)Making Ice Cream in plastic bags!!
3. Room decoration—you might think oh one posters enough, or who needs a white board, but after a while it will be sad just staring at white walls, or you will miss a friend and wish that you had something for them to leave you a note with
4. Desk lamp—some rooms (like those in Platt) come with desk lighting but most just have overhead lighting and a desk lamp is essential if you have a roommate who goes to bed early and you find yourself needing to write a paper at 2 am (not that that would My completed ice cream…lots of work but it tasted good!ever happen…)
5. Under-bed storage is also good if you have a lot of clothes, or it is just a good place to store food and other things you might not need all the time but want to have around.
6. Stapler—you have no idea how many people have come to class without a paper stapled because the ones in the library are all broken—and some Profs dock you points for not having papers stapled, so better safe than sorry, have one in your room
7. A word on refrigerators—they are not necessary, my roommate and I did not have one last year and survived just fine using the hall fridge. But, you do have to worry about people taking your food—which totally sucks but happens. So you can get a fridge and not worry about it or you can put your stuff in paper bags, staple them shut and write your name on them. That way #1 people think it looks sketchy and #2 people know that you will know if they take your food. I also have a microwave which I don’t use very often, but it is kind of nice to have around sometimes.
Okay, so that is my list, I hope that helps…I remember how overwhelming packing is. But the good news is that if you forget anything Fred Meyer is a short 10 minute bus ride away and you get pretty much whatever you might need.
Hope everyone has a good week—sorry for the boring blog post, but my mind is on finals and packing up to go home.
Peace–Libby

30 April 2010

I’m writing two papers today…

Hey readers, I’m waaaay too backed up with final papers, projects, and study sessions this week to do a proper blog entry, but I’ll catch you all up during Finals Week, when I will actually have a good bit of free time when I’m not sitting for exams.

In the meantime, here is the link to the big comic strip project I’ve been bantering on about for the last month. It’s called Sex Talk: a comic about communication, consent, & gettin’ it on. It’s SFW (safe for work), meaning there’s no profanity or nudity or violence, but the concepts may be more appropriate for a mature audience.

25 April 2010

I’m OK, You’re OK

Dear Weather Gods,
Why do you hate us so? I would be much obliged if it would be sunny and nice this week and cold and rainy the week after.
Love,
Libby

Well, tragically I don’t think my letter is going to work, but it is so unfair that it is supposed to be cold and icky this week and warm and 70 next week when me (and the whole population of LC if they are smart) will be locked inside dorm rooms and classrooms scribbling away in blue (green) books hoping to maintain (or save) their grade. So that is pretty much what my next to weeks look like, lots of studying for math and econ and not much time to enjoy the weather which is supposed to be getting better every day.

Today was probably my last hurrah before finals begin, my roommate and a couple of friends went to see Oregon Ballet Theatre today and had a great time. This time it was at a different theatre, which it turns out is right next to another concert hall, all very confusing, but luckily we had directions. Anyway, this time instead of having orchestra seats so close you could see the sweat we had the highest seats in the highest balcony so we were right in front of the light guy (who waved at us!). It was pretty hilarious, although the Newmark is pretty small and very vertical (and vertigo inducing) so we had a really good view and had no problem seeing anything. My roommate was sad because we didn’t get to see any “ballerina love” as she termed it. Last time we saw two of the dancers holding hands back stage which was adorable!! But, we did get to see that on the ceiling of the theatre there are stars all over the place, it was kind of weird because it almost gave the effect of being outside. Overall it was really good, we saw one world premier which I would love to watch again, but alas finals are calling me.

Last week was interesting…in my Presidential Politics class we had a debate about the electoral college (I was arguing for ending the system along with 2 other people) and things got a little heated during the question and answer session on Wednesday. I was honestly a little frustrated because it was dominated by a few people…but it was kind of fun and a good chance to flex my debating muscles and not have to listen to a lecture for once.  It is kind of scaring me that I only have one week of classes left, that means I actually have to start remembering everything in that class that I have forgotten, though we do have a take home final which is nice. Take home finals are kind of a terrifying thing to hear about. Professor Eisinger (who is no longer here) was infamous for giving insanely long final exams. My final for American Gov 103 was 32 pages long (though it didn’t have to be, I think most people did 15-20). I have this problem where if someone gives me enough time and no page limit I will write forever… But luckily I have not heard of another Prof who gives finals like that. If there is one, I don’t think I want to take his/her class…

I am starting to get a little sad because I realize that I won’t get see most of these people until next January because I will be in Scotland next fall. One of the downsides of studying abroad, but I am excited about the experience and hope my web cam will be enough to keep me in contact with my friends. Though I wonder how much I will hear from my roommate who will be in Africa. I am sure she will be very busy hugging lions and not have a lot of time to be sending e-mails to friends and family.
So, for now, all I can hope is the weather gods comply with my request and send me sun tomorrow and clouds when I need to concentrate so I can make it through finals (and packing  sad thought). I hope that everyone else is having a great end of April and enjoying spring (if it is spring where you are)!!
Libby

OK, so the pics are kind of random, but I thought I would give all you future freshman something to look forward to. The Pirate Festival happens in September (and yes people dress up) so this is my roommate and I in our pirate splendor. The other picture is from last semester, on the day before my last final I came back to find water dripping from my ceiling in a big bubble….disaster, ended up with my mattPirate Festivalress on the floor and water dripping into the bucket all night. So, I will pray that by posting this picture it will somehow magically not happen again this semester (well mainMy roommate and the “bubble” of water right above my bed…tenance fixing the roof last winter might have prevented it too…)

—FYI I have never heard about this happening to anyone else…I think that perhaps I am just cursed!

24 April 2010

sat down and banged out

What would the plural form of trillium be, trillia?CPR manequins come with removable faces in convenient duffle bagsmeet our newly elected student body president, Dith Pamp.It’s scramble time. I don’t have much to say this week because mostly I’ve been saying No. There’s tons of awesome stuff going on in April, but my final projects and papers are such a powerful force that I’m snatching every bit of unstructured time to get work done instead of going to all of the awesome stuff that’s happening. I totally brought this on myself – it was my brilliant idea to do a series of comic strips instead of a research paper as my final Gender in Relational Comm project. While it’s way more work, time-wise, it is exponentially more rewarding for me than a paper would be.

my brother and I do not actually speak JapaneseI finished the first two pages of my comic series and printed out thick stacks of them at the on-campus Copy Center. On Sunday, I’ll trundle around campus and stick them everywhere, guerilla art style, but with Administrative approval. The comics, which are called “Sex Talk: a comic about communication, consent, & gettin’ it on” are a humourous approach to teaching my fellow community members why consent is valuable, how to do it, and ways to do it creatively. I structured the pages so that they are sequential. The first page covers the basics, the second page delves a little more deeply into theory and complexity, and the third page presents alternative ways to do consent besides the basic Question: Would you like this? Answer: Yes/No script. I don’t have the comics online yet, but I’ll get them up once I finish inking the third and final page.

the trees think it’s spring, they are sillyAlong with the comics, I’m co-facilitating a Rubberwear Party next Friday as part of Take Back the Night. The Rubberwear Party is a combination consent workshop, safer sex lesson, and toy introduction. The Forest Area Director David and I just sat down and banged out our agenda, which features a movie clip and some quality parlor games. One of the founders of Portland’s independent feminist shop, It’s My Pleasure, will be doing the toy piece of the evening after the parlor games. It’s gonna be so good.

At some point, I probably ought to start my other final projects. I’m writing a paper on something to do with feminism and Catholicism in my Women in US Religious History class, and I have yet to solidify my topic and to collect my sources and about two weeks in which to do it. And our Queer Studies professor finally assigned the last paper of the semester, which is an intriguing prompt about female masculinity that probably won’t get any attention from me until a few days before it’s due because I’m so consumed by this Comm comic-and-workshop project. (I have to write a series of synthesis papers on the project as a whole; it doesn’t end with the comics and the Rubberwear Party.)

Course registration wrapped up this week. Here’s my lineup for next semester: Statistics, Psychology of Gender, Feminist Theory, and… Rock Climbing! I’ve loved having a PE the last two semesters, so even though I don’t need the credits, I’m going to keep taking one PE class per semester to keep my endorphins in shape. I think it’s a great plan.

We got personal satisfaction and matching t-shirts at Spring Into  ActionAnd we did.Ian and Brian showin’ some labels what’s whatLast weekend I did something not academics related! I participated in Spring Into Action, a large-scale community service day whereby members of the LC community propelled themselves into all corners of Portland for a bit of good ol’ fashion volunteer work. I vanned to the Q Center with my classmates Ian, Ginny, and Kira; an international student from Japan I hadn’t met; an alumnus staff member; and a sociology/anthropology professor. We processed a big chunk of the 3,000 books that had been donated to the Q Center’s library – we entered the books into their online cataloguing system, stamped them, labeled their spines, and shelved them. It was a little bit tedious, but sometimes that’s exactly what you need to chill out a bit. It was really rewarding too, because we could see just how much progress we made.

Now to make some progress on my schoolwork. Hello, weekend. Let’s be homework buddies.

Email: maisha@lclark.edu.

16 April 2010

Love, Daisies and Troubadours

 “The Waste Land”

April is the cruelest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.

T.S. Eliot

That precisely sums up my feelings about April, it is long, cruel yet full of the promise of beauty (though I don’t pretend to be an expert on analyzing Eliot). April is a tough month for us LC students, the weather is finally starting to get beautiful and just when everyone wants to sprawl on the lawn with a good book (or a guitar if that’s your kind of thing) and enjoy the sunshine. But it is, alas, the month of research papers, final projects, take home finals and last minute exams. I just turned in my big research paper on the 1964 election there was big “event” if you will about the due date. I finished the paper at 10 am on Sunday morning and spent the rest of the day relaxing and not checking my e-mail after 5pm. I wake up Monday (the due date) to find an e-mail that the due date had been extended to Wednesday. Now, my story not that exciting, but one of the other girls in class told the story of how she stayed up all Sunday night until 5:30 working on the paper only to find out later in the morning that the paper had been extended and another girl hadn’t even gotten the e-mail. That is a lesson for all of you future college students: check your e-mail a lot, because if you don’t you might miss a deadMy Roommate in front of the “mysterious” cabin thing in the woods  in South Campusline extension or the knowledge that your 8am class is cancelled for the next day.
I am actually doing pretty well for April, unlike last semester I have yet to have a stress attack about all the work I have to do. But that probably has something to do with taking a math class and econ, which is hard, but does not require projects or essay wrThe Corbett House on South Campusiting (at least in 100). Other than writing papers (and reading my e-mail…) I have been trying to enjoy the sunshine and good weather as much as I can. My roommate and I decide to take an impromptu break from studying math (we weirdly had tests on the same day) and ran up to frolic at South Campus. South campus is where the grad schMy roommate and I last year in Platt East dormool is and is a good place to take a walk in the woods or lay on the grass in the sunshine and admire the hills or the garden. South campus (affectionately known as “South”) is a short walk up the hill (and super close if you live in Forest) and is a fun place to avoid studying for a few minutes.
We also had the end of the semester hall dinner for  SOA (Stewart, Odell and Akin dormitories) where we ate good food on fancy plates and had drawings for prizes. Our AD (area director, the “adult” in charge of the complex) is hilarious and writes amazing e-mails An art project that has made its way around campus (they are clam  shells)(one e-mail was all written as if the college was a fiefdom “In our year of the college two thousand aught 9 etc.). Anyway, he would read to us all the particular facts of the prizes (made in China, delicious chocolate covered goodness) and I won a rubber duck that lights up when you touch the bottom. At first I was a little disappointed about only winning a duck, but Charlie said that I would find it entertaining and I have discovered that it is true.
Tomorrow is also the concert for the Wind Symphony and I am starting to get really nervous, I have a couple of solos and I hope that I will not freak out and forget how to play (not that that would happen, but it is my irrational fear). I am excited for the end of the semester and hopefully a lot of people will come. There are also a bunch of other end other semester concerts and senior thesis presentations going on and it seems like I am forever seeing signs and posters about senior projects. Okay, that’s all for this weeks update, and for everyone who is still agonizing over college choices remember that I am always available via e-mail ebm@lclark.edu and would love to hear from you!!
Don’t let April get you down!
Libby

15 April 2010

I am so close to being done

It is really strange to think that it’s been almost four years since I began this crazy journey called college. During these past few weeks, memories of last four years keep playing themselves out in my head. It’s like I’m looking through a camera… and the shutter is snapping in really rapid succession… the individual frames of memory freeze and seduce me with their promises of friendship, love, laughter - but only briefly. It is only a figment of my imagination, after all.

I want to share one of the earliest of such memories. About a month before freshman year started, my would-be roommate, Josh, and I began communicating on the internet via AIM . For some reason, the topic of our height came up, and in the spur of the moment I decided to tell this 6′1″ stranger that I was 4’11”. Just for fun. I still remember his bewildered face from our first real-life encounter with each other, when he walked into the room and I stood up to greet him. Yeah,, all 5 feet 7 inches of me. His eyes  got a little bigger, and his mouth curved into a sly grin. “You’re not a midget!” he exclaimed. In his voice was a sense of relieve, mixed with a tone of amusement, and of familiarity. My door-in-the-face strategy (what up social psychology!) helped me break the ice, and gone was any sense of social awkwardness, as we were both thinking the same thing: we’re in college now!

To be continued… in my series of reflexive posts.

13 April 2010

wrestling with deadline dragons

 
Mel carefully placed ground pistachios on each flower-shaped cookie
this is how you make fancy grid patterns on round cookiesthe horror!we tied a bow around the box so we wouldn’t open it and keep eating the cookies before dinnerthis is sorrel, it’s edible and grows in crowds along one of the paths to the libraryone of my favourite pieces at the senior art exhibitthe senior art exhibit floors me every yearthis piece was made entirely out of wood and materials from the compost heap on campuslook, baby pteridophytes!This part of the semester is always about wrestling with deadline dragons. Consequently, my entries may be contracting a case of brevity. Possibly.

Last weekend was Easter! Mel and I made Noon Berenji cookies, which were dangerously delicious. They’re primarily butter and sugar, but I can eat them because they’ve got rice flour instead of wheat flour. Win! While I was in the middle of punching the dough into flower shapes, one of my residents popped in dressed in a full-body Easter bunny suit. It was completely terrifying and NOT OKAY. But we gave her a cookie and she went away.

When we went to dinner at my aunt and uncle’s house in Salem, Mel and I were introduced to my cousin’s cousin, who is visiting from Thailand. We had a really good time trading holiday explanations. Trying to explain how the Easter Bunny has any sort of connection to the resurrection of Jesus was kind of impossible, so we moved on to talk about other traditions, like the Tooth Faerie. Apparently in Thailand, when you lose a tooth you’re supposed to make a wish and chuck it somewhere you won’t find it. That’s cool and all, but I like the tooth-in-exchange-for-money system better.

It’s class registration time! After a bit of a tussle, I got into Psych Statistics. While Stats isn’t necessarily my first choice as far as enthusiasm goes, I registered for it during the first round of registration because it will fill up faster than any of the other courses I want to take. Stats is a prerequisite that a lot of classes require, so competition is steep. If all goes according to plan, by this time next week I will be successfully registered for Feminist Theory, Psychology of Gender, and Yoga. With a potential two-credit internship tacked on, that’ll bring the tally up to 15 credits total. Sweet.

This week, I’m devoting two of my evenings to the Red Watch Band program. It’s a national by-students for-students training course that teaches youth how to recognize and respond to signs of alcohol poisoning. The idea is that students looking out for other students can help reduce the number of alcohol-related deaths that occur nationwide on and off college campuses. We round off the program next week by getting a free CPR training! Good deal, since I need my CPR certification updated for my summer job.

I am increasingly exploiting my waking hours to work on my comic strip project. The first page is sketched, but that means that I still have two more to sketch, then inking, scanning, copying, printing, and distributing. It’s a lot to do, and I’m supposed to be ready for the distribution stage by next Sunday. With just over a week to complete all that, I’ve gotta get crackin’!

Hey prospective students! College selection is a lot like speed dating. Send your best getting-to-know-you questions to me at maisha@lclark.edu. And if you see me when you visit campus, say hi!

9 April 2010

Written in the Stars

my roommate studying in our lounge (Conveniently located two doors down from our room)Hey all, how did it get to be April? It seems like it was only yesterday that I was filing new applications in the admissions office and now the decisions have been made and it is up to you to choose! So I thought I would divert from talking about my life for a moment and give you some information that you might be dying to know about Lewis & Clark.  LC prides itself on being open to debate, for example Paul Wolfowtiz was on campus on Monday discussing democratization.You know your a college student when…(soon this will be you, even if you don’t think so LC is a pretty liberal school and Wolfowitz is not much loved by our students he was well received by the campus. People were very respectful, not one person booed, or called him a liar or tried to yell at him over political issues. I was a little disappointed in Wolfowitz’s speech, he seemed to be trying to keep his message so neutral that no one could possibly disagree with him. That was kind of a let down considering it was supposed to be a debate. But, students asked some good questions and acted in a very scholarly demeanor.
On a rather unrelated note I thought I might share a bit of “college” lore with you as some of you are new pioneers. As some of you may know LC is built on the old Lloyd Frank estate, the Manor House (admissions and the PrMy dooresident’s office) was once a grand home for Frank and his family. So, the campus is beautiful (someone very famous designed the gardens) and has been around long enough to have some legends. One legend I hear about all the time (and some students who live in Forest Hall swear that it is true) is that there are tunnels that run from the top of campus were the dorms are to the classroom buildings. Some claim that you can enter the tunnels and walk all the way down to the classrooms without getting wet. Now, of course the professors say that this is a gross falsehood, and no one can confirm there existence, it is a nice idea. Another “legend” is of the Japanese Baths that are supposedly located in the Forest dorms. There are supposedly jacuzzi like baths in the basement. This legend seems to have a bit more truth to it, though I have never seen them and I am still a little skeptical of their existence. Now there are also the ghost stories (see earlier Stewart Lounge–Cooking!posts) and the best story of all. Apparently a women named Mrs. Akin donated a lot of money to the school upon her death with the conditions that there would never be any fraternities or sororities (still true) and that they would servMaking cake in the campus apartmentse ice cream at every meal (also true, usually 5 or 6 flavors and some sorbet). That’s all I can think of for the moment, but these are some of the favorite stories told around the dorms.
I also thought I would clear the air about one gross falsehood I read the other day on a college guide that Lewis & Clark is a “clothing optional” campus, this is NOT true, it may have been once upon a time, but not now and not in current memory.  Another myt2012 (the movie) + late night cake baking=1 great Fridayh about LC is that it is full of hippies, well there are all kinds of people at LC, maybe we have a couple of hippies but it is certainly not the majority of the population as some people might like to say. What I can say is that there are a lot of diverse people on campus and there is niche for practically anyone. While that may sound kitschy, it has been my experience.
OK, so that is all for now, but I thought I would start taking photos of the different dorms that I can make my way to give you guys a better idea of where you might like to live. It is also good to see what the halls look like when real people inhabit them. I hope that no one is stressing out too much about college picking, but I hope to see some people on admitted students day, you might meet my roommate who is a tour guide!
Peace–Libby

8 April 2010

crazyyy

So this week is kinda crazy, multiple papers, multiple tests, and just not enough time.  Also, I’m a bit sick, so I’m just trying to get through it all!  But life is so good.  And you know what?  Everything is going well so far, my friends are as amazing as ever, and it’s just going to be alright.

Easter was fantastic.  I was excited to spend it out in Oregon, and man I wasn’t disappointed.  I went to a Good Friday service at River West Church and greeted people at the door beforehand with other people in the Church’s college age group, The Hub.  That was a fun experience because I feel like I am recognizing more faces and I got to see a few people from Young Life there.  I went back to River West for Church on Sunday, but before that we had an Agape brunch!  A few days before Easter, Carolyn and I decided we wanted to have brunch with as many people that could come, so we sent out an email in hopes that people would show up with food.  We didn’t have a “you bring this, I’ll bring this” kind of list, so we didn’t know what to expect.  Thankfully, we had the perfect array of food!  I made a tater-tot/egg/cheese hot dish, Carolyn made pumpkin pancakes, Branden made muffins, Emily made a lemon-tart (with raspberries and strawberries!!), and I know I’m forgetting things, but it was so good to have brunch with friends.  After that we all split off to go to our respective Churches.  The crew at River West

This week, like I mentioned, has been pretty good.  There are so many things happening around campus and I have had to miss them due to my large homework amount.  For example, the International Affairs Symposium about The Global (Dis)Order happened and I missed out.  While International Affairs will not be my major, the idea of thinking globally has a lot to do with why I chose Lewis & Clark.  I love being surrounded by so much information all the time.  One thing that I am going to do tomorrow is visit the Hoffman Gallery of Contemporary Art beneath Watzek Library and check out the Senior Art Exhibition!!  so excited, I get to pass out programs!19 graduating art majors have their work there for all to see.  Check out this website and the video!  I did go to our Lu’au which was more than incredible!  My camera did not find its way there, so I do not have any photos of my own.  But I will ask my friends if I can borrow some of theirs, not to worry!

While I need to go do homework, I have to tell you about two things I am doing!  Carolyn has a musical theatre concert this FRIDAY!!  And Kelsey has a dance team performance (with guest appearance by Momo & The Coop!) on SATURDAY!!  It’s going to be a good weekend!D

I’m enjoying the sounds of rain, and I hope you are too!  Questions? Comments? Concerns?  karonson@lclark.edu

Best of luck with college decisions!

Kayla

“I grew up in this town, my poetry was born between the hill and the river, it took its voice from the rain, and like the timber, it steeped itself in the forests.Pablo Neruda

8 April 2010

test run cooking


the trees on campus think they are popcorn
playing on the beach!Jada watched from the sidelines while Moki wore himself out swimming for sticksMt Hood dresses in floral prints for spring and so should youDith gets to fill in the speech bubble with inspiring campaign-ish  wordsthe ceramic clams have invaded campus, they are everywhere in large numbers!Matthew explains Easter eggs to Auntie MelAndrew and Auntie Mel playing songs togetherTato Bug likes to play the plinky keys randomly while Auntie Mel plays recognizible thingswe used a deceptive amount of butterthis is how Mel announces that it’s snuggle timeWe had a Block Party in my building on Friday featuring too many   balloons and SethI am a big fan of tea, psychology, puns, and drawing myself.Springtime in Portland is always such a messy affair. In the past two weeks I’ve experienced shorts and mild sunburns, a series of deluges, cold winds, and a hail storm. Spring break itself tripped all over itself in the weather department. My brother came home from San Luis Obispo for spring break, and we spent our week just chilling out. We hiked to the top of Multnomah Falls, hill-walked Portland, threw sticks for our fetch-obsessed cocker spaniel Moki on Sauvie Island beach, and drank a lot of tea. I finally got around to seeing Avatar, but the 3-D glasses gave me a killer headache, because they didn’t fit over my regular glasses very well. I also spent a good portion of break reading and researching for class.

A lot of the research I did over break was for my Gender in Relational Communication final project. I read academic articles studying date rape and communication, but my sources also included zines and the wonders of the internet, from myspace blogs to manifestos. Probably my most useful and interesting source was the zine Learning Good Consent, available in a Portland zine shop called Microcosm Publishing. I will be modeling my comics on a lot of the perspectives and advice offered in that little zine. This week I met with the director of Health and Wellness to get administrative approval to post my drawings up all over campus during the week leading up to Take Back the Night, which is on April 23rd. I gotta get busy drawing!

ASLC, our student government, is in the midst of office elections. My friend Dith is running for president, and she let me draw her for her campaign. I heard that she kicked butt at the debate on Thursday, but I couldn’t be there for it because I had meetings and interviews. One of the things that I like about LC is that students really do have a lot of voice in what goes on with the school. The Administration does a pretty good job informing students about changes and asking for input ahead of time. For the most part, LC actually wants to make itself a better place for students, and I think that’s a fairly uncommon sentiment for colleges. Anyway. Enough sentimentality.

This morning, my girlfriend Mel and I had Easter breakfast with her family. Her nephews, Andrew and Matthew, junglegymed all over the house to fill their Easter baskets with plastic eggs that the Easter Bunny had left behind. They’re such sweet kids, they kept offering everyone their candy. Tomorrow night, Mel and I are going down to Salem to have an Easter dinner with my family. As our contribution to the meal, Mel and I are making Noon Berenji, which are Persian rice flour shortbread cookies. Mel is half Iranian, so we got the recipe and some of the ingredients from her mom, who was thrilled that we wanted to learn how to make them.

The excitement of this Saturday evening was dinner and a movie, college student style. Mel and I made quinoa topped with mushrooms, goat cheese, and pine nuts, and sautéed bell peppers, onions, tofu, and basil. It was really yummy! I’m glad I’m doing my cooking test runs now, so that hopefully by the time I graduate I won’t be completely helpless in the kitchen. After eating our dinner, we trundled down to Templeton Student Center to watch the free screening of Sherlock Holmes. Yeah, we party hard. Watch out, weekends.

My biggest excitement of the week is that I probably most likely scored the perfect internship for next year! SMYRC (Sexual Minority Youth Resource Center) offered me an interview for a position working with the Bridge 13 program, which is awesome times ten because no joke, that is actually what I want to do with my life right now. Bridge 13 is a program that goes to schools and other youth-filled places and conducts “creating safe spaces” workshops that teach staff members how to be welcoming to and affirming of frequently marginalized identities. It’s pretty neat. I’ve been on the participant side a few times, and every time I participated in the workshops, I shouted to my friends afterward that “that’s my ideal career right there!” So, yeah, it’s really good news that SMYRC might want me to be their indentured servant next year.

Your emails will find me at maisha@lclark.edu if it’s meant to be.

3 April 2010