Friday, June 16, 2006

work turned against me.

I really didn't mean to be gone for so long! A few things came up at work. I am now in charge of an undergraduate chemistry researcher. No offense to my particular undergraduate, who seems really bright and like a cool guy, but undergrads in the lab are babes in the woods. Like babes in the woods with grenades actually. It's a full time job to keep them from hurting themselves and those around them. But that only lasts about two weeks before they graduate to being like 12 year olds in the woods with a BB gun. Definitely not so bad. Hopefully we are into this phase, but I'm not sure because my undergraduate just went away to some concert in Tennessee for a four day weekend. Can I tell you how old and uncool I feel that he didn't even tell me what the concert is? I guess if I were in the know I wouldn't have to wonder. I totally just googled it and it looks really fun. Now I have to hold myself back from playing my "i'm cool, i'm hip" cds to prove that I have heard of the bands that he went to see. I am such a retard.

In other work news, we have a new postdoc and he is sharing space with me that I got used to having to myself. Oh, and also sharing the computer. This makes me much more productive at my workbench, since I have no place to sit, and cuts my computer/blogreading/blogwriting/emailing time to like 5% of normal. Luckily, he's gone for the weekend now too. Oh, sweet Friday.

The other work thing that has kind of knocked the blogging spirit out of me was an email I got from our department secretary. She innocuously reminded us about upcoming visits by recruiters from pharmaceutical companies. This makes me feel very sick and icky inside. If I think about the interviews with these recruiters within 2 hours of bedtime I have nightmares and wake up feeling awful. I don't think this is a normal response, but I'm having a little trouble positive-self-talking my way out of this one. Besides the horror of talking to these people, even with the best possible outcome from that process (ie they give me a job), I just don't think I would be all that happy with a traditional job at a pharmaceutical company.

I have been worrying about this a lot and going around sighing all the time. Isaac snapped me out of this yesterday as he often does by saying something true to put things in perspective. He pointed out that even with all this worrying, the possibilities ahead of us are a good solid life together, or a somewhat wealthier solid life together. I wouldn't pray to God for more than a good solid life and it's pretty insane to worry so much about the difference between these two possibilities.

I meant to wish a happy birthday to Stacy (blogfriend) and Brian (superfriend) and Russell (sister Katie's boyfriend) in a little more depth. They were all born on June 3rd in different years and can I just say I'm hoping to time the birth of all my future children to this day because i think it's produced a lot of outstanding people. Really amazingly outstanding. I actually jotted down lists of all the things I love about each of these people in preparation for the birthday post that never happened, but i don't think I'll post them because of pathetic sappiness. Okay, here's the least sappy from each:

1. I love Stacy because she has impeccable taste in movies, meaning that it matches mine almost exactly.

2. I love Brian because when he drinks too much sometimes he gets crabby and I couldn't love anyone who wasn't a little bit imperfect.

3. I love Russell because he actually listened to the weird CDs I made for him and Katie for Christmas. I think even the Bollywood one.

I think of you guys all the time, not just on your birthday. Hope it was a good one.

Friday, June 02, 2006

movie reviews and a slew of birthday joy coming our way

So! I guess things have been busy! Isaac and I felt like we needed a little vacation of our own after the visit from his dad and dad's new girlfriend. It's not like we are strangers to awkward social interactions, since as a couple we are pretty much equal to one infant when it comes to making small talk. But this visit was up there in awkwardness even for us...at least nobody cried or anything. Enough said about that.

Isaac's dad had asked him to do a little reasearch about concerts and events and cats and whatever, but it turned out they only wanted to actually go out if tickets happened to fall into our laps. Since the New York City Ticket Fairy is a myth...we stayed home. And watched movies! And went out...but only for eating. That actually worked out great.

We saw two terrific movies and one awful one. Match Point - Terrific. I know it was kind of like Crimes and Misdemeanors but I think I liked Match Point better. Woody Allen is to Match Point as Pedro Almodovar is to Bad Education. Sort of. It's a little noir-ish. I did have slightly lower expectations too, since Match Point would seem to fall into my avoided category of A Simple Plan-type of movie where seemingly normal people do awful things to each other out of greed. But actually, there was a lot of emotional distance from the characters all along (every one of the characters, come to think of it) that allowed the movie to be quite enjoyable.

The other terrific movie was
Head-On
, a movie about German Turks, and it is fabulous, the best foreign movie I've seen in ages. It is probably the best movie I've seen in months period. I recommend it highly to anyone who can handle subtitles. Over the age of 21. I think I have been avoiding "heavy" movies lately, but this one reminded me how rewarding a really gripping (if tragic) story can be. The story is that these two ethnic Turks meet in a German asylum after their suicide attempts. I know, it sounds like it would be really PERKY. The woman, Sibel, begs the guy, Cacik -- wait, was that his name, or is that a Turkish yogurt dish? Oh crap, his name is Cahit, and cacik is the garlicky yogurt. Anyway, Sibel begs Cahit to marry her so that she can get away from her oppressive (and violent) family. Her dad will let her marry a Turkish guy. She offers to be his roommate in a sexless marriage so that she can have some freedom to go out and screw other guys and party. Cahit is a terribly messed up alcoholic and widower....Sibel screws some men....touching and darkly funny story ensues. And the soundtrack is great. Best use of Depeche Mode in a movie ever.

The terrible terrible terrible movie was Russian Ark. I'm pretty sure I would have hated this movie under any circumstances. But in the interest of full disclosure, I did come home from work and throw up a mere 3 hours before watching this piece of crap. Russian Ark has a couple of claims to fame - it was all shot in a single take (like that Hitchcock movie Rope) and it is filmed completely in The Hermitage, a beautiful and enormous museum in St. Petersburg. Isaac has been dying to see this movie because he lived about 5 minutes from the Hermitage for 6 months when he went to the USSR with his dad in 1989. He spent a LOT of time in this museum, and was interested in seeing it again. My problem with the movie was its complete lack of a comprehensible storyline or plot or allegory or interesting characters or anything but nice paintings on the wall and pretty costumes. Ick.

It's raining buckets here in New York, but we are excited to be going to LL's place tonight to celebrate her birthday! We're bringing guacamole makings and a master margarita maker (that would be isaac).

Also... Happy birthday to my Dad today! And I'm not forgetting about all the June 3rd birthdays either...someone has shown remarkable restraint in not reminding her blogfans about her birthday!

kittens are cute. who knew?




via You Can't Make It Up