Tuesday, February 28, 2006

phat tuesday...

this morning on the bus, i was listening to the ol' ipod. for a change of pace, i had it on shuffle mode (because lately i've been obsessively listening to the sufjan stevens album _illinois_, which is nothing short of mesmerizing), and one of the songs that came up was "crosstown traffic" by jimi hendrix. which reminded me that, hey! it's mardi gras today!

here's how that worked out in my mind...

picture me, seventeen years old, a pot-smokin', authority-hatin' high school senior who listened to a lot of hendrix, led zeppelin, and the grateful dead. a bunch of my friends and i decided to go to biloxi for mardi gras (since i'm from that part of the country that legitimately celebrates the carnival season and we got the monday and tuesday before ash wednesday off of work/school). there were maybe eight of us in total, we took two cars (one of which was the brown datsun 200SX that i drove around in those days), and brought as much beer/booze as we could acquire through our of-age sources. well, everything that could have possibly gone wrong that day did. we got our ice chest full of beer confiscated by the cops that morning, before any of us could reap the benefits of its presence. there was high drama in the various couples in my friend group. my friend amy locked her keys in her car so at the end of the day we all had to pile into my car to drive back to pascagoula. good times.

but why did the hendrix tune remind me of this? because in the early part of the day, before everything went to shit, as we arrived in biloxi, "crosstown traffic" came up on whatever mix tape was playing in my car's cassette deck and my friend matt hung his head out the window and shouted out the lyrics to anybody who was within earshot. ah, high school...

i never did new orleans for mardi gras and never really had any desire to. it always seemed too touristy, too frustrating, too crowded for my liking. biloxi was easy, it was familiar, it was social enough.

but today i'm thinking about new orleans. i guess i'm glad that there's another reason to remind the rest of the country of how completely devastating hurricane katrina continues to be for those areas affected. lots of folks are still homeless and jobless and displaced. seems like a crappy reason to throw a big party. or maybe it's a good reason -- things deserve to go on as usual. onward and upward.

onward and upward.

Monday, February 27, 2006

not fit for human consumption...

krista just brought me the strangest snack i've ever experienced -- a cheerio/marshmallow/m&m concoction with icing on the top. it's like a rice krispie treat, if rice krispie treats got all punked out and went to raves. this thing needs its own glow stick. and a warning label.

and if you're curious as to whether it's tasty? well, it's not. it's just kinda weird. i ate it anyway, but the whole time i had a puzzled look on my face. and i don't feel good about it. i'm afraid it's stealing my soul...from the inside.

Sunday, February 26, 2006


okay, i love parker posey. i think she's absolutely brilliant. and i'm convinced that if we ever met, she and i would have to be best friends, based on, among other things, a mutual capacity for uber-spazziness. but this new pepsi commercial that has her and jimmy fallon dancing in the streets? well, it makes me a little sad.

i really probably shouldn't watch tv...

Saturday, February 25, 2006

girl with broken heart...

oh, the inevitable balance of the universe...

i had planned to spend today catching up on reading, getting a lot of work done, doing some job searching. instead i've spent the day in my pajamas, never straying too far from my phone, wishing it would ring but knowing that it won't. today feels heavy and wasted and unfair. and very very sad. how do we live in a world that can be so bereft of logic or predictability? how do i let myself get so hurt?

this feels like the wrong forum to unload what i'm feeling. not only does it feel too public, but i've deliberately chosen to keep some things private, and what i'm going through right now definitely falls under that category. so i'm not going to say much more. just that today is all about grief. tomorrow may be, too. and that's okay. despite it all, i have no regrets, no remorse. nor could i have prevented this. which is what makes it so awful.

timing is a motherfucker.

right now, though, i need to learn to be where i am, not to focus on what can or cannot be.

Friday, February 24, 2006

just because...

Moon River, wider than a mile,
I'm crossing you in style some day.
Oh, dream maker, you heart breaker,
wherever you're going I'm going your way.
Two drifters off to see the world.
There's such a lot of world to see.
We're after the same rainbow's end--
waiting 'round the bend,
my huckleberry friend,
Moon River and me.


remember that post from a couple of weeks ago where i put the WCW poem through that online translator? well, i'm wondering if they make one to decipher the spam message i just got in my inbox. because i have no effing idea what it means. here it is, in its entirety:
similar window mentioned make my? arms thus tying yours, music thats reference appearance night already.
miserable fly we next again beautiful. out miserable somewhere money wanted? miserable reference reference wife,
sandwich next fire supposedto you added. not gym reference purpose. taught force sandwich prison.
friends whom raise is teach prison?
prison immediate tying. out filled fire allow carefully or.
sheesh! and i thought my e-mail exchange with krista from a few hours ago was entertaining!

by the way, in my jurisprudence paper, at one point i totally argued that the notion of morality had a penumbral zone. you know, because language is inherently ambiguous. either my professor is going to love my paper or he's going to request that i drop his class.

and before you go picking at the statement that language is inherently ambiguous, may i direct your attention to the block quote above. oh yeah.

"you are not mentally prepared enough for this backflip..."

can somebody puh-lease explain to me why it is that when one doesn't get enough sleep, one's body refuses to function properly, but if one gets more than enough sleep, one's body doesn't stockpile its energy reserves so that it can stay awake and alert for extended periods of time?

because i've been tired all week and i've slept like it's been my job. i've taken naps, gone to bed early, slept in later than usual, and still, here it is, 6:03 in the morning, and i'm utterly worthless. yet, i still haven't finished my paper... grrrrrr...

and the most depressing thing ever just happened. my alarm clock went off. as in, the alarm that usually wakes me up in the morning. but this time it went off, and crazy conservative radio (which typically angers me to wide-awakeness) mocked me for not having slept. it mocked me for ever taking a class so self-indulgent and academic and, sheesh, liberal as jurisprudence.

i think i just hallucinated a UFO outside my window.

oh good, the coffee's ready.

emily and krista: sleep deprived!!!

a sampling from a late-night e-mail exchange between classmates:

On 2/24/06, emily wrote:
high school formal, indeed! what are you going to do? how will you be your best when [professor's name] has got you snow-shoeing through positivism all night the night before the prom? professors just don't understand.
why is it that when i stay up late, i feel hungry and dehydrated all the time? i'm drinking a ton of water, but it's not working... WTF?

On 2/24/06, Krista wrote:
i know, i'm the same way. i'm also fighting off a very strong urge to take a shower. no more procrastinating. seriously, i'm really just making things up now and asserting them as well established interpretations of hart's theory. four pages, here i come.

On 2/24/06, emily wrote:
i'm shooting for four pages, too. seems reasonable. he did initially say 3-5 pages, anyway.

On 2/24/06, Krista wrote:
can only think of four words right now, and i just want to keep using them over and over. like, three times in a sentence.

On 2/24/06, emily wrote:
are they:

On 2/24/06, Krista wrote:
. . . close, two out of four ain't bad

On 2/24/06, emily wrote:
2 out of 4 is still more than the number of pages i have written.
here's what's in my head:

On 2/24/06, Krista wrote:
WHAT THE HELL IS THIS ARTICLE ABOUT??? i am under the impression that hart has not included a thesis, let alone a clear one, so i do not see why i have to.

On 2/24/06, emily wrote:
i like how you think. like a rollerskate. rollerskates don't need theses. just wheels. and the open road. you and a rollerskate? you're like thelma and louise. they didn't need a thesis. of course, they killed themselves in the end...

On 2/24/06, Krista wrote:
i'm thinking i might refer to the case of Roller Skate v. Invulnerable Humans in part of my argument.

On 2/24/06, emily wrote:
i'm thinking i might use the case of WTF v. AYFKM, or perhaps in re: NGAS*. those cases really express what i'm trying to say in a way that i simply cannot.

*nobody gives a shit

Thursday, February 23, 2006

serenity now...

i just cried the whole walk home from my bus stop. why is it that the things over which we have the least amount of control can make us so goddamn sad?

it's 10:13 and i'm staring into the face of an all-nighter for this jurisprudence paper. i'd better get my shit together.

with friends like these...

so, i very kindly let andrew use my computer to check his e-mail while i paid a visit to the professor for whom i'm a 2L legal writing TA so i could ask her a couple of questions. when i got back, krista and andrew and i took a little cigarette break so we could all wallow in the problems of the penumbra that are befuddling our minds as we attempt to write this jurisprudence paper. upon my return to my little 3rd floor carel where my stuff is all set up, i decided that i'd open itunes to give my paper-writing a little soundtrack action.

itunes opens up and dutifully notifies me that there's an update available and asks me if i'd like to download it. why, yes! so i download it to my desktop. when it completed its transfer, i had to minimize all the windows on my computer so i could get at the desktop files, and lo and behold, my desktop image has been changed from a delightful little picture of a bunch of monkeys wearing hats in a tree from the children's book "caps for sale"... to a picture of a man getting his naked ass buffed by a handsome fella in a suit.

i'm not sure if i have krista or andrew to thank for such a lovely surprise, but it did give me a laugh.

shucks, guys! you're the bestest!

UPDATE: andrew has informed me that the guy holding the buffer is none other than tom ford, fashion designer extraordinaire. i have no idea who that is.


happy birthday to caitlin!!!

today's the day that my baby sister gets all growns up. as of 2:30 this afternoon, my sis can officially do any and all of the following:

- register to vote
- buy lottery tickets
- be tried as an adult
- buy tobacco

look out world!

and, caitlin? be a good girl and do good things -- i love you very much.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

nine days...

...until spring break.

not that i'm counting, of course.

okay, i'm totally counting.

why? because right now i feel all of the following:

burnt out
(and most importantly) way way way WAY behind on my blogging!

i mean, it's been days since i've put up a post! i'm mostly putting up this post now so that it doesn't seem as if i've completely fallen off the face of the earth. i'm still here, but a little busy and preoccupied. here's the short version of what's been going on:

1. krista and i totally ruled the client counseling regionals! well, almost totally ruled -- we came in third. but we were only one point behind the two teams that tied for first and thus went on to the final round. still, third place in a regional competition for a couple of girls who were flying by the seats of their suits the whole time ain't so bad. i felt very good about our performance -- we were brilliant! and our judges loved us! bring on the 2007 competition!

2. jurisprudence paper due on friday morning. ho-ly crap. SFC! my head is currently swimming with positivism and the separation between the law that is and the law that ought to be. i'm convinced that it's all crap, and so instead of write about the h. l. a. hart article that's been assigned, i'm just going to write a five page love letter to my professor. three cheers for blind grading!

3. still having those little tremors in my ankles, and since the brain scans came back all clear, i think i'm going to make an appointment at the student health center and have them run some bloodwork to make sure there's not something else going on. it's totally possible that i'm overdosing on caffeine and i'm deficient in about forty million vitamins. better to find this out now than when i'm jaundiced and cracked out around finals time.

4. i'm trying to figure out how to be patient and live in the moment. i talked about this with the therapist this morning -- the importance of being in the moment and letting go of what i can't control. for 29 years i've been terrible at this. time to teach an old dog a new trick.

5. i won one hell of a scrabble game on sunday. this totally makes up for the thwocking at star wars trivial pursuit that i endured a few weeks ago. but, i also got my ass kicked in a wrestling match that same day... but, hmmm... brains over brawn? yeah, i'll take that.

okay, back to my paper. spring break can't get here quickly enough!

Friday, February 17, 2006

if only the word had gotten out before valentine's day...

courtesy of my dear friend schossy, i gladly pass along this link. you truly must see it to believe it.

with some bizarre and befuddling scintilla of pride, i point out that this establishment, surely on the avant garde of fashion in some parallel universe, is headquartered in south bend, indiana, home of my alma mater.

but mostly, i just want to say AYFKM? SFC!* and WTF? i mean, "provisioners of america's finest plural clothing"???

my personal favorites are here, here, and here. but especially here.


*SFC = sweet fucking christ. it's a new one. i'm trying it out in my casebooks. nice, eh?

Thursday, February 16, 2006

a few well-deserved shout-outs...

so, krista and i are in the throes of preparation sessions for this saturday's regional client counseling competition. we've got professor B as our coach, who is simply fantastic, and we've had some awesome friends agree to act as fake clients for our mock interview sessions. so, big thanks to andrew and sandy and tom h., all of whom totally rule!

and thanks to mark, for being amazingly supportive and excited about this for me, even though the timing is a little less-than-ideal.


today i called my neurologist's office to get my test results from the EEG and MRI... you know what i found out? nothing! as in, both the MRI and the EEG indicated no changes! this is seriously the best news i've gotten in a long time! i nearly started crying when they told me on the phone.

to say that i feel relieved would be the understatement of the millenium!

where there's smoke...

it’s 1:45 in the morning and i’ve just made myself a drink. an hour ago, i was asleep. why am i awake, you ask? is it insomnia? bad dreams? nervousness about this weekend’s client counseling competition? no, no, and no.

the reason i’m awake right now – wide a-fucking-wake – is that i just about damn near burned my house down tonight. but lemme back up and give the play-by-play…

i went to bed around 10:45 and was probably asleep a little after 11:00. hooray, i thought! i’ll get up at 6:00 and will have gotten seven hours of sleep! good for me! little did i know that something had started that would interfere with my shut-eye. fast-forward to 1:00. i wake up because i hear a loud noise upstairs at michael & steph’s place. and then my phone rings. it’s michael. the conversation goes like this:

emily: hey—what’s going on?
michael: there’s a fire outside your window?
emily: what the fuck? oh shit, i just dropped my glasses…
michael: i’m standing outside your door.
emily: i’ll be right there.

so i find my glasses, run into the living room, open the door for michael, and sure enough, there’s a fire on the roof outside my living room window, where the plastic cat litter container full of dirt and old cigarette butts used to be. you see, over the summer, when i had a little makeshift garden on my windowsill, i had attempted to grow little pumpkins. and i used an old cat litter tub as the receptacle for the pumpkin-growing. yeah, yeah, i know that the size and shape of cat litter containers aren’t exactly well-suited for viney, leafy pumpkins, but it seemed like a good idea at the time. and so when the weather got cooler, and the garden was dismantled, the plastic container kinda stayed on the roof and became where i dumped all the soil from the other plants. and that then became a glorified ashtray for all the nights when i’d sit on my windowsill and smoke.

and i guess tonight, when i finished my windowsill cigarette, i didn’t do a good enough job of making sure the cigarette was completely put out in the dirt.

the facts are as follows: somebody had been walking by outside on the street and saw the fire on the roof, so they rang michael and steph’s doorbell. the loud noise i heard that initially woke me up was steph stomping on the floor to get my attention. so when michael came downstairs and i let him in, it immediately became a matter of only-emily-and-michael-can-prevent-roof-fires. michael filled up a pitcher with water and i grabbed a fire extinguisher and we set out to make sure that the flames were all gone. and after a dramatic, traumatic few minutes of dousing-with-water, culminating with michael climbing outside to make sure that all the burning had ceased, michael, steph, and i had successfully made sure that our house did not burn down.

and now, i’m in my living room, fan in the window in an attempt to clear out all the smoke that has filled my apartment, cats running around all confused and crazy-like. i feel overwhelmed by the following, in no particular order:

this could have been very bad. i literally could have burned the house down. there was a smoldering cigarette busy for two hours in that container outside my window! what if someone hadn’t walked by and seen it? what if the fire had gone on longer than it did? what if we had lost our stuff, our home, our lives???

i feel like an idiot. i feel like a cliché – single woman nearly burns down home with cigarette. ah, the gross negligence!!! i pretty much owe michael and steph a life debt, and i’m not sure how i’m going to present this little experience to my landlord (this is what security deposits are for, right? and the thing about how my smoke detector never went off, not even when my apartment looked like the inside of a cloud? yeah – i’ll mention that, too.)… but i truly am grateful to the kindness of strangers, the helpfulness of friends, and to a close-call-reminder that i really don’t need to be smoking anymore.

Monday, February 13, 2006

best. client counseling team. ever.

the regional competition is on saturday! wish us luck!!!


Friday, February 10, 2006

call me silly, but...

...the opening ceremony to the olympics kinda gives me the creeps. there's something really odd about seeing world-class athletes being introduced, carrying the flags of their respective homelands and waving to the crowd, while "funkytown" is being played.

no shit -- the following are actual quotes from the two men who are emceeing this whole affair, w/r/t the 1980s american music soundtrack that's being blasted in the stadio olimpico in torino:

commentator number 1: if i hear "bette davis eyes" by the immortal kim carnes, my night will be complete!
commentator number 2: donna summer would do it for me!

there's really only one word for this: fantram.

(hmmm... i could have avoided this had i gone out tonight. maybe i should just go to bed and start all over tomorrow...)

krista and emily advance to the finals!

hooray! we got word today that krista and i have made it to the final round of the school's client counseling competition! our first round performance was last night and we both felt really good about it. we got some solid, constructive feedback that will come in very handy for the finals, but even if we don't move on from here, it feels pretty darn good to finally have some validation that we're worth a damn as little lawyers.

donny and chris made it to the finals, too! i'm psyched for them! the third team is also awesome. good stuff all around!

Thursday, February 09, 2006


so, i just got home from having a celebratory drink with krista and paul because krista and i put in a spectacular performance this evening for the client counseling competition, and as i got in, michael came downstairs to borrow my iron and my ironing board, and as i'm standing in my apartment talking to michael, what runs across my kitchen floor but a MOUSE!!! a goddamn mouse!!! what the hell?!?! I HAVE TWO CATS!!! WHAT THE HELL KIND OF PSYCHO KAMIKAZE MOUSE IS HANGING OUT IN MY APARTMENT??!!!

this means one of two things:

1) i have the laziest, most good-for-nothing felines ever, or
2) this mouse is a crazy asshole

i just hope the mouse doesn't have friends.

this will blow your mind...

and will come in very handy for those of us who may not find legal jobs for the summer and have to work at the gap...

watch and be amazed!

this video comes to you via krista, who found it on a blog for a podcast called "how to do stuff".


Tuesday, February 07, 2006

elevator going up...

earlier today krista and i got on the elevator on the ground floor of the law school, headed up to the 4th floor to the library. on the first floor, one of our professors from our good old first year days got on. k and i had seen her earlier in the day, too. we all said hello. she used her magic faculty key to activate the magic elevator so that it would open up on the 3d floor, where her office is. (the elevator only lets us peon law students off on the fourth floor, the main library entrance). then i turned to krista to tell her about how this classmate of ours last week had gotten on the elevator on the ground floor and only took it to the first floor and how i and whoever else i was with (michael, maybe?) made fun of him for it.

then the elevator door opens on the 2nd floor, i.e., one floor up, and our professor gets off. and as the door closed, i said to krista and the other kid who was in the elevator with us, "wait, didn't she...?" to which the other kid said, "yep". and laughter ensues.

now, at this point krista said, "emily! you're terrible!" and i said, "what? she didn't hear me!" and krista said, "she was standing right there!"

and so we continued to talk about this for a few minutes, and finally we realized that we were laughing about two totally different thoughts...

i was laughing because i was confused that our professor had gotten off on the 2d floor when she had used the magic key to go to the 3d floor -- i thought maybe she had mistakenly got off too soon and just went with it rather than turn around and get back on the elevator.

krista was laughing because i had just essentially bitched about people who only take elevators up one floor and our professor, well, only took the elevator up one floor.

i maintain that the other kid on the elevator was totally on my wavelength here. krista thinks he was on hers.

either way, it was kinda funny.

but only kinda.

there's paste on my dome!

well, paste residue, really. this morning i had my EEG. good times. i got to the hospital at 8:50 and didn't leave until after 11:00. eurghhh... had a long conversation with jane, the EEG tech, about pittsburghese, while she glued the 24 electrodes to my head. then i had to close my eyes while a strobe light flashed in my face for a few minutes, then i had to take really fast deep breaths for three minutes (i got to feeling pretty damn woozy and unhappy by minute two), and then i was instructed to "try and fall asleep".

the falling asleep part didn't work so well, and here's why: 1) i had menstrual cramps, and 2) three minutes of hyperventillation wasn't exactly conducive to sleepytime.

and then it was over, the electrodes came off, my head was full of gunky white pasty stuff, which is still in my hair and still feels really gross.

but i'm done. my brain tests (at least this round of them) are all done. and now i'm just waiting around to hear the results. with my fingers crossed. fingers and toes. and i'm wishing on stars. and eyelashes. and dandelions. for good news. or at least for not-bad news.

supabowl photos...

andrew's got his, tom's, and my superbowl party photos up on his blog. enjoy!

Monday, February 06, 2006

stupidest. post. ever.

i love seltzer water. like, i really really love it. especially the kind with "refreshing lemon lime flavor". i could drink it like it was, erm, water...

but my question is this: could i satisfy my body's need for hydration solely on seltzer water? do those little carbonation bubbles detract from the water-ness? i.e., would eight glasses of seltzer every day keep me healthy and happy?

according to the nutrition facts on the bottle of seltzer that i'm drinking right now, it has zero calories, zero fat, zero sodium, zero total carbohydrates, zero sugars, and zero protein. just like real water! and its ingredients are carbonated water and natural flavor.

can a girl live on seltzer alone? do i throw away my brita and devote myself fully to happy bubbly water with just a teensy bit of citrus flavor?

it just seems too good to be true. can somebody please tell me what's wrong with this picture?

Sunday, February 05, 2006

one for the thumb!

goooooooooooooo stillers!!! now, i'll be the first to admit that i'm not an NFL fan. i love football, but i love COLLEGE football. i'm all about the NCAA, and in particular, my dear dear alma mater. with that said, however, i'm very very proud of the superbowl XL champions -- none other than the pittsburgh steelers! and it's almost impossible not to get caught up in the steelers mania that's taken this town by storm.

tom had a helluva superbowl party, the keg was kicked midway through the fourth quarter, there were singalongs a-plenty to various steelers songs, there was much waving of terrible towels. a good time was had by all.

it's now 11:15 and the chorus of honking car horns and pittsburghians cheering in the streets has yet to subside (and there are lots of booming noises, too -- i can't tell if those are fireworks or gunshots... i'm gonna go ahead and tell myself that it's the former). this is a happy town tonight. and i'm a sleepy girl. so i'm off to bed, to dream of the steelers in superbowl XLI (shit, did i do the roman numerals correctly there?).

i've got some very entertaining pictures from tom's house tonight -- i'm sure they'll make an appearance here soon.

here we go! steelers!

Saturday, February 04, 2006


fine. i give up. no more messing around with my computers! the time has come to stop before i do something i can't undo. and based on donny's comments on my last two posts, i don't really want to put myself in the way of i-told-you-so's from my friends, so no more of this for me.

the bottom line for today's adventures: i am dumber than computers.



my desktop computer is soooooooooo old... its operating system is windows ME.

windows millenium edition both sucks and blows, thereby creating a vortex of all things shitty.

i'm currently suffering from smart person syndrome -- yeah, i could just call dell tech support and have somebody talk me through all of this, but that would mean admitting that i can't figure it out by myself.

at this point, i'm hoping that by sheer force of will i'll be able to transfer these files and keep from losing my mind...

p.s. that pot of coffee i drank earlier? bad. idea. jeans.

time capsulation...

(is "capsulation" even a word?)

so, today is clean-emily's-hard-drive day. and no, that's not some sort of icky euphemism. i'm currently surrounded by three computers -- grant's, which has wireless; my laptop, the bane of my existence; and my old desktop, which i just set up and plugged in and turned on for the first time since i've lived in this apartment.

here's my plan (and this comes from the dubious mind of one who really knows nothing about computer clean-ups) -- i'm going to make use of the hard drive in my desktop, which has lots of space and nothing really going on, to store all the stuff i want to keep from my laptop.

but before i can do this, i have to go through the files on my desktop, to make sure i'm not deleting anything important. here's some of the stuff i've found so far:

1. an draft of an invitation to a party that my old roommate tanya and i hosted on february 8, 2002. i was funny back then! what the hell happened?
2. a silly drawing of a pterodactyl that my sis sent me years ago.
3. a LOT of old drafts for my law school personal statements. ugh.
4. pictures of the bald spot i had on my head from when i got the brain biopsy! yikes! i was such a frankenstein!
5. some really really bad music...but also a bunch of dead kennedys songs! i had forgotten i had this stuff!

p.s. the soundtrack to this little cleaning venture has been g. love & special sauce's "yeah it's that easy", followed by no doubt's "tragic kingdom". it's been YEARS since i've listened to this. good times!

Friday, February 03, 2006

esoteric thought about this sunday's superbowl party at tom's...

i love tom's mom! like, seriously! and not just because she gave me a hug when i gave her that iron city bottle with dan marino on it, either.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

...more familiar territory...

i did it! this MRI adventure is now a thing of the past. and from this side looking back on it, i'm doing just fine. the folks at shadyside hospital imaging were friendly, courteous, and pretty damn quick. and the best thing they did was to actually install an IV in my arm.

see, in my MRI experience, the docs always order the scans with and without gadolinium contrast, which gets administered about 3/4s of the way through the scan, and apparently makes things light up in the brain. in every other MRI, the contrast injection has been given through a needle and syringe, which means they have to pull me out of the MRI so that they can shoot me in the arm. well, this time they hooked up the IV works and attached me to a long tube full of saline so that i wouldn't have to move at all when it was time to administer the contrast.

there was a time, friends, when having an IV installed in my arm happened with some frequency. i think they're kind of amazing. you find a good vein, put in a hollow needle, slide the little IV plastic tube in through the hollow needle, then pull the needle away and voila! a little portal into your circulatory system! you hook some plastic tubing into the works that go into your body, and then, to make sure all is working properly, you let the tube fill up with blood (to get all the air out) and then flush it through with a syringe full of saline. weirdest thing ever? when the saline flush goes into your blood, you can actually taste the saline! totally bizarre. i had forgotten about that.

aside: for a fun read about the time i was put in charge of administering my own IV steroids, check here and here.

the MRI itself was fine. i only felt freaked out at first, but i might have perhaps maybe sorta taken an ativan about half an hour before the whole thing started to try to stave off the kinda annoying feeling of being buried alive that MRIs can invoke. but that turned out to have been a good idea, even if it meant that i was all loopy and simulating the noises that the MRI makes while i was on the phone with a certain someone afterwards. but it's over now and i feel a little relieved. my part is done. i've done what i needed to do. now i'll just wait to hear the results. and at that point i'll decide what needs to happen next.

and then i decided to reward myself, so on my way home i stopped by the evil whole foods to get some dinner and some ice cream. what did i get for dinner, you ask? i got a giant salad consisting of the following: mixed greens and spinach, bell peppers, tomatoes, celery, peas, corn, chickpeas, sunflower seeds, raisins, and vinaigrette dressing. best. salad. ever.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

familiar territory...

tomorrow after class i'm going to get on a bus and head over to shadyside hospital to have an MRI. the last MRI i had was in august of 2004 -- a year and a half ago. back then this blog was something entirely different. it was, essentially, a diary of all of the things i was going through as a result of first being told i had a grade 2 brain tumor, then having that elevated to a grade 3, then having that whole tumor thing changed to a possible multiple sclerosis diagnosis. there were so many admissions and revelations and crazy feelings that got dumped into those early blog posts. it was something almost unrelated to what i post on this site now.

and so i guess that's progress.

but now, on the eve of spending an hour in a scary tube, my head circled by a noisy magnet that will see through to what's going on in my brain, a lot of those feelings are present again -- the uncertainty, the fear, the frustration, the reluctance. there's not a goddamn thing i can do to change what that test will reveal tomorrow. there's not a goddamn thing i can do to prevent the reality that this is something i'm going to have to stay on top of for the rest of my life. and right now, there doesn't seem to be a goddamn thing i can do to calm down the threatening panic that's got me from my fingertips to my toes.

back when this blog was my record of all things health-related, only four people knew of the blog's existence -- my dad, my brother, my sister, and stean. of the four, only my dad checked it, and when he did, it was infrequently. my brother told me that he didn't read it because not only did he feel a little afraid of what i was going through, but he also felt that if he had read it, he would be imposing on something very private. but he wouldn't have been. that was such a profoundly lonely time, even though i was surrounded by amazing, supportive people who weren't at all hesitant to let me know they loved me. but what i was going through was all my own.

it was my loss -- the loss of the idea of myself as immortal. and just like any loss, even though the emotions one goes through are so universal and human, the experience and manifestation of those emotions can be devastatingly personal. there was a safety back then in putting my own experience on this blog because, although i knew people could read my posts, no one really was actually reading it.

but now this blog is whatever it is, but there are people who actually check in on it with some regularity. i'm part of a group of friends who, in part, interact with each other through blog posts and comments.

and so i'm a little wary of this blog now. i have a fear of being too honest, of exposing myself to my friends in a way that might not be appropriate; a year and a half ago i never worried that i could say too much here.

so i won't say anything further, not at this point. tomorrow's just the MRI. it will be a few days yet before i learn what it shows. at that point i'll have to decide whether i want to write about what i find out, and i imagine that decision will be largely influenced by exactly what those test results are.

so for now, i'll just take some deep breaths and try to get some sleep. knowing what's going on in my brain is infinitely better than not knowing, so i can take some comfort in looking forward to finding out where things stand. and this is a matter over which i truly have no control, so worrying about it doesn't really do me much good. i've survived worse. i'll get past this, too.

kinda like motivation, but not really...

jesus! even lexisnexis wants to know what i'm doing this summer. they're even telling me i can get 200 points for filling out a survey about my summer employment. well, there's a problem... i, erm, don't have a summer job...

i'd better get on that, eh? i've got until february 28th to get those 200 points!