Thursday, February 25, 2010

Tables and Technique

So, as most of you are potentially aware, St. Patrick's Day is fast approaching in the month of March. I've done Irish dance since middle school and St. Patrick's Day has always been a favorite holiday of mine. I love the color green and the haunting lilt of penny whistles so any excuse to enjoy those things is more than welcome.

Last year my church threw a party called the "Sham-Rock-N-Roll" on St. Patrick's Day and a good friend of mine had been taking an Irish dance class and was asked to dance for everyone at the party. So, me being a nice friend, and having a decent amount of experience in the Irish dance world, I lent her my hard shoes and went through her dance with her to make sure she was ready. She had this awesome lime-green wig which she wore in pigtails that night.

Anyway, we went to the party and everything was going well and they had a dance off and she got up and danced and everything was dandy. She did a fabulous job and everyone was thoroughly impressed. Others proceeded to get up and generally make fun of Irish dance in an attempt to do their best impression of Irish dancing.

I was enjoying it all from the sidelines until my friend's sister arrived, who unfortunately had been witness to one of my previous Irish dance performances. She wanted to know why I hadn't gotten up. My reasoning was that everyone was having a merry old time making fun of Irish dance without any serious dancers getting out there and ruining it for them.

However, she proceeded to broadcast the fact that I was a "legit" Irish dancer and the crowds cried for a performance and I then got pulled onto the floor until I agreed to dance. They put some music on (not hard shoe music) and I did some demonstrations of Irish dance for them, just a variety of shuffles and rallies. Not anything well put together. But, somehow they loved it, and I won a box of Lucky Charms, so it was all worth it. Although I did feel somewhat bad for those who had legitimately been trying to win the dance off.

Anyway, this year I was asked in advance to perform at the same annual party. Which is a great idea, and I agreed to do, but with a some apprehension since I haven't really danced in about a year.

Yesterday I whipped out my dance binders and found some old written steps. I worked a little on trying to remember how they went and then found some music to dance to and pounded them out on the carpet in my socks. Realizing that that probably wasn't going to be enough to tell if I really had my technique right, today I got my shoes out and started looking for a hard wood surface to practice on. I considered practicing on the tile of our kitchen, but for anyone who has done that, you know that the sound is awful and flat. So, about an hour ago it occurred to me that our table would be a great surface. However, the top of the table is glossed, and I wouldn't want to dance on it anyway, for fear of damaging it. So, I flipped it over onto the carpet and gave that a shot.

Best. Sound. Ever.

Perfect, loud, ringing sound. Almost too good. I was dancing in the middle of the day, but I was entirely self-conscious about my neighbors and bothering them.

So, now you know. If you ever need to spend time in a hard wood floor studio, but you don't want to ruin the nice floors of your home, give the underside of your table a shot.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Fail Blog

So, this evening we were just messing around looking up random junk on the interwebs and we stumbled across one of the most amazing websites ever. It just makes you laugh.

Here it is:

Go, laugh, send me links to the best ones.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Great Conversation

So, I stumbled onto this this morning, and it is pretty funny. It's amazing to me that this woman even called in the first place. What did she expect him to tell her?

(Best Tech Guy caller EVER with Leo Laporte)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Fainting Goats

I'm on a bit of a video rampage. Here's another great one. It makes me laugh every time.

(Fainting Goats)


So, this is a video my brother made several years ago. Kind of fun. I remember being impressed when he originally showed it to me and while I've seen it a number of times since then, I still enjoy watching it. Hopefully he won't mind my sharing it.


Food Fight

I can't remember where I first saw this, but it is pretty awesome.

(Food Fight)

If you want an explanation of which events are begin portrayed, here is a website for that:

If you want to know exactly what food represents which countries, here you go:

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Main Difference

If you can't see the entire thing, click on it and it will take you to a page where you can see it all. It just made me laugh and I wanted to share. :)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Holidays Galore

In one of my classes yesterday (I'm currently an intern teaching English as a second language) I asked my students what they had been up to over the long weekend. I then started pointing out holidays, such as Saint Valentine's Day and President's Day and realized that this was a pretty busy holiday weekend, in more ways than just those two.

So, Sunday (the 14th) we had Valentine's Day and the Chinese New Year (End Year of Ox, begin Year of Tiger). My two Taiwanese students had me convinced that it was on Friday, but unless I misunderstand every other source I looked at, it was on Sunday.

Monday (the 15th) was President's Day. I don't mind celebrating George Washington's birthday, especially when it means a day off from class!

Tuesday (the 16th) was Fat Tuesday/Pancake Day/Mardi Gras. I didn't gorge on pancakes this year, but I have in past years.

Wednesday (today, the 17th) is Ash Wednesday.

Basically, there just seemed to be too many holidays to ignore. I'm not sure I did any of them justice, since they were all so close to one another, and I wasn't entirely aware of about half of them, but it is nice to think about them, at least a little bit. Look forward to your holidays, because what's the harm in enjoying each day just a little bit more, for one random reason or another?

Monday, February 15, 2010

Look-Younger-Than-A-15-year-old Day

This weekend I went on a little adventure to Tucson, Arizona to help do support for a team of cyclists competing in a 24 hour race.

It involved driving down to Tucson, camping, eating lots of junk food, eating lots of delicious food, warm sun, cold nights, smokey fires, cacti, lots of bikes, helmets, bikers, trails, hippies, shovels, tents, sleeping bags, several sweatshirts, shorts, flashlights, headlamps, Red Vines, Monsters, Port-a-potties, sandals, running shoes, running, socks, a little sunburn, lots of energy, lots of fatigue, cards, books, water, an RV, a trailer, two trucks, riding bikes, racing bikes, night rides, pulling cacti out of people, no showers, lots of wrong turns, and lots of fun. We drove down on Thursday and got there Thursday night, settled in on Friday, and the race started at noon on Saturday and went until noon on Sunday. So much fun. On Sunday we packed up everything and took off around 1:30. We booked it back to Tucson to try and catch our flight back to Salt Lake and discovered upon trying to check in that we had missed it because of some confusion along the way. So, another night spent in Tucson with early flights this morning coming back. We finally got to shower and slipped some decent sleep into the mix. (Happy Belated Saint Valentine's Day, by the way.)

So, Monday, President's Day, we arrived early for our 7:00 flight, made it through security (with liquids, but without the required quart sized baggy, and with a hefty bike lock, a metal knee, and several other items we were a little surprised to get through) and waited patiently at our gate. We got on, and two of us (out of three) were in the exit row. So, we're sitting there, and the plane is preparing to take off and the flight attendant comes by and looks at me and says,
"What do we got here?"

I, in my confusion, simply look up at her and wait for something more. She finally says (something to the effect of), "Do you even qualify to sit here?" (effectively: Are you even old enough to sit here? You know you have to at least be 15 years old...)

I laugh out a "Yeah..."

She says, "Can you lift that door?" (I think I should maybe point out at this point, since I failed to do so earlier, that this woman was a fairly good size black lady with a great southern accent.)

I respond (somewhat indignantly), "Yeah!" (like, duh.)

She looks me up and down a bit and says "Ok" and then continues with the rest of her instructions.

I'm fairly certain she was just pushing my buttons, giving me a hard time, but I had to wonder if I looked younger than usual today. A mild burn/tan on my face, sort of messy hair pulled back with a head band, jeans, a t-shirt/sweatshirt. Although, in my opinion my hand being held by the guy next to me should have been a slight tip off that I wasn't that young. It wasn't a child/adult hand hold. There may have been interlocking digits. I mean, really?

Anyway, no biggie. Haha, lots of laughs. I look so young. Right.

We arrive in Phoneix and move to our next gate to wait out our layover. Happens to be next to a Cinnabon so I couldn't help but want to go and grab one. I run over with my wallet in hand and wait patiently until the clerk can help me. I ask for my Cinnabon, she tells me the price, I hand her my credit card. She looks at it for a little while (just past the normal amount), looks at me, and runs it through. She doesn't ask for ID, but as she hands it back she says "Is this you, or your mama?"

Really? I respond, "It's me," with just a hint of laughter in my voice, but in my head I was thinking, "Really? Really? How young do I look to you? What is it with today?"

The second flight went smoothly and we made it back just fine. No more incidents of mistaken age. Still lots of fun. Still good times.

I'm happy to have the face I have, but I do have to wonder sometimes if I simply look younger, or other people are just getting worse at guessing age. Either way, I'll take it. I've been told it will be a good thing as the years go by...

So, Happy Look-Younger-Than-A-15-year-old Day.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

It's too late!

So, I'm belatedly taking American Heritage and we were talking today about the Declaration of Independence and my professor whipped out this amazing video. In order to really get it though, you have to watch the first video before you watch the second video.

(Timbaland - Apologize (feat. One Republic))

(Too Late to Apologize: A Declaration)

Monday, February 1, 2010

For I dearly love to laugh

I sometimes feel knocked off my feet by unexpected events. These events aren't always good or bad, but the changes they bring can occasionally make me have to stop and re-evaluate what's going on in my life. Most of the time it is a quick fix and I'm off again.

These past few weeks have been full of small unexpected events. January was a very exciting month. There was of course the whole parking issue, along with a new car battery, a new computer, and a few other small skirmishes, but for the most part most of the exciting events were good events. I applied for the TESOL grad program, finalized graduation plans, and discovered a new, amazing sandwich (samich).

Before I go any farther, let me elaborate on this sandwich. Two pieces of Honey Whole Wheat bread from Great Harvest Bread Company, Mesquite Smoked Turkey, Swiss cheese, Jack Daniel's Honey Dijon Mustard, Mayo, Avocados, Tomatoes. See, doesn't that just sound delicious? What's slightly odd about this sandwich is that there are several items included in the ingredients which I wouldn't normally say I was partial towards. For example, I've never been a huge fan of tomatoes or avocados, and I've never really given honey dijon mustard a chance. But somehow, in this sandwich I've discovered all kinds of things which I didn't appreciate before.

Anyway, it just amazes me that there are so many things out there in life that can come and sweep me off my feet, but no matter what they are, almost always the overall changes that result are good changes. I can always find a reason to smile.

Like the whole parking situation. I was definitely a little frustrated initially when I didn't get a parking spot, but I was resigned to the idea and was even looking forward (a very little) to exploring the parking around my block. And then I was even lucky enough to have a stellar roommate who sold her spot to me. And now I'm a pro at backing into a tight little parking spot between a wall and a pole. (Which I rock at, by the way.)

Or the whole battery ordeal. If my car hadn't died and I hadn't had it jumped and tried to go for a drive I would have never had the experience or thrill of driving through two stop lights and a stop sign without stopping. I wouldn't have that story to tell now.

And more recently with my computer, if I hadn't spilled milk on the mouse pad and made the mouse button stick down I never would have wanted to open it up and look inside. And now I know how to do that. (Not that I'm planning on doing it again any time soon. Or ever again, for that matter.) I've seen the inside of my computer. Granted, I'm now having to get a new computer to replace it, but the experience was there all the same, and the end result worth it.

I guess what I'm saying is that life is worth it. All the good things and bad things, they're all worth it. Sure, not everything that happens is always ideal, but there is always something good to take away with the experiences.

And more than anything else, life makes me smile. It makes me laugh. It makes me so happy to be alive and in this world and experiencing the things I am.

Just don't forget to laugh. That would be a shame.

"For I dearly love to laugh."
- Elizabeth Bennet