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the latest waddle:

good morning, wordpress - 10:36 a.m. , 2009-07-03

elaborate murder attempt - 2:56 p.m. , 2009-07-01

building a tractor in the basement - 10:42 a.m. , 2009-06-19

ask no questions tell just a few lies - 3:17 p.m. , 2009-06-09

my long lasting flavor really lasts long - 1:10 p.m. , 2009-06-04


2002-02-19 ... 9:00 a.m.

ONCE AGAIN, I DIG IN MY POCKETS FOR STRAIGHTFORWARD NARRATIVE AND COME UP SHORT

Morning, early, I wait for the bus and am mesmerized for several minutes by the streetlight's reflection in an oily puddle. But I have not written a haiku about it because I am not Basho.

A few years ago at a conference I got to hear Edward Tufte's lecture on information design and the space shuttle Challenger disaster. It's an excellent talk, and he uses the exact charts and graphs that NASA based their launch decision on, which are unclear, confusing, and look like just a bunch of data points with no message. Greed and the pressure to have a successful launch played into that bad decision, I'm sure, but so did poor information design. So work work work on your website navigation, kids. It could be a matter of life and death.

There I go again with the making of the humor! Sorry. I do wish I were more visual, though. Part of my job is the editing of tables and graphs, and there have been times when I've nearly wept with frustration over a poorly constructed table, knowing that there's a better way to present this information but unable to find it.

Yesterday was a horrible day. I came to work late and left early, because I didn't trust myself to be around people or sharp pointy office supplies. LT worked late, so my evening was spent in solitude (probably a good thing, considering my evil mood), and I ate a bagel for dinner and listened to Beethoven and watched an old Mystery Science Theater 3000 (The Girl in Gold Boots) on mute and read my book, all at the same time. I like the Incredible Wrongness and irony of watching MST3K with no sound.

I really don't know what was wrong with me yesterday. I just felt miserable and sad and slightly feral, itchy and agitated in the brain, like the advanced stages of syphilis or methamphetamine withdrawal. As I was going home, darkly muttering to myself and stomping along the sidewalk past all the stupid people in my way, I had this horrible moment-of-clarity realization: I have become one of the big-city Muttering People. Those people you're slightly afraid of on the subway? That's me. Hooray. Now all I need is a shopping bag crammed full of string, seventeen layers of clothing, and some paranoid delusions and the transformation will be complete. Ha ha it is to laugh. Except not.

And now: FARM SAFETY CORNER WITH MIMI SMARTYPANTS!

Big tractor safety! Grain storage safety! Chainsaw safety! Wagon safety!

A cow is the animal most likely to hurt you (at least in Canada), but horses are not too far behind.

DONíT GO IN THERE! FOR THE LOVE OF GOD!

Yuck.

I learned a shocking thing this past weekend. I learned that the Marshall Field's on State Street (good link, check it out), where I've been Christmas shopping and tea-taking since I was just a wee child, is a seething hotbed of man-on-man action. According to my reliable source, the men's bathrooms are a favorite area for anonymous fellatio. WHO KNEW?

---mimi "pantalones del fuego" smartypants

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