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How I Made Fire Smell Like Cookies

11 Jan

Hey guys! Guess what?? It’s story time!

When I was in elementary school, lightening hit our house and the resulting fire burned it down.

When I was in sixth, seventh, and eighth grade I had a series of vivid nightmares involving people… well, burning. I couldn’t use a stove without flinching during middle school.

I wanted to punch all those pyromaniacs in middle school in the face, but there were too many of them.

When I was in eighth grade one of my brothers and his friend decided to play the lite-all-the-things-on-fire game one lovely Saturday afternoon… It caught fire to his sheets. At the end of a long and very stressful day, our house was left in a heap of extra-crispy wood clumps.

If you’ve ever seen Stranger Then Fiction with Will Ferrell– best movie ever– think about that moment when Harold raises his arms in the air and yells hopelessly at the narrator… I had one of those moments that day.

In high school, our dog house, the backyard, a calender, and a small pile of sticks caught fire as well– still my brother and his friend. You would think after, you know, burning down the house, they’d burn up all their fire-related curiosity (Haha, you see what I did there? Yeah, Shakespeare ain’t got nothing on this witty lady).

But no. Apparently, that’s not how little brothers work.

What this led to was a strong sense of caution around fire, verging on pyro-phobia, that followed me well into college.

Today, however, I did something cool.

I lit a candle.

candle

He didn’t talk to me as I thought he would. Regardless, I’ve decided to name him Calcifer. I expect he’ll ask me to go save his master Howl any moment now.

If you look on the label, it has cookies on it. I figured it was worth the risk, if it could make my life smell like baked goods.

I’m not sure where we got this candle. I found it laying in a drawer in my parents house. It could be a magic candle, I guess, set there by the same lady that gave life to Pinocchio.

On the other hand, though, it could be an evil candle, set there by a dark wizard from the future determined to destroy me before I get to a point in my life where I do something vaguely important. Either way, my life has just before much more interesting.

The smell of the candle is somewhat disappointing, though. It smells like a creamy-sugary-delicious smell, not the burning-crispy-brick smell that I usually get from homemade cookies.

My next life goal is to set fire to the rain. Go big or go home, as they say.

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Thoughts and Hippos

8 Jan

First, this is my hippo. His name is Fat-Fat. I don’t know why I named him that it just felt right.

fatfat

He really loves filters. It’s probably because he models for Instagram when he isn’t protecting my desk.

Second, I have thoughts sometimes that I have to get out of my head… and these are them. 😀

Revolving doors are fun. They let you go faster and faster, and, if you’re skilled, you can pull your feet up and balance between two sides of the glass and let it carry you in circles. It’s the best feeling. But don’t do it while going into a job interview. They will remember your face, and they will ask you about it. They might not hire you.

I remember in high school when people used to say, “Don’t stress out about what other people think of you because no one will even remember you in, like, 10 years.” But that’s not exactly true.
If you got into a fight in front of me in middle/high school, I remember your face, I remember your name, and I remember how you thought you were the next karate kid. If you don’t look like Mr. Miyagi at our high school reunion, I will be disappointed.

When walking around a book store, it’s often hard to tell the difference between the paranormal romance and the regular romance section, but it is very easy to tell when you’ve gone from the romance section into the erotica section. If there are handcuffs on the cover and you’re not standing in the mystery/thriller section, it’s probably erotica.

On a related note, if you’ve walked into a section where every cover is of a teenage girl in a fluffy dress staring you down like she is about to stab you or kiss you, you’re probably in teen paranormal romance.

I like to tell myself that every single thing that appears on my television is made up. It’s all fiction, they’re all paid actors, and the advice they give you only applies if you live in Narnia. I prefer not to believe that the people on Hoarders or Oprah or Property Virgins actually exist. Try it. You’ll feel tons better about the state of humanity… and of the world.

Most songs out there are shallow, narcissistic, and would make you want to punch the person if they said it in real life. Once I accepted this and embraced it, listening to the radio became a bajillion times easier to handle:

Oh, hello Taylor Swift– marry me Juliet, you’ll never have to be alone, I love you and that’s all I really knowDid you become Romeo, TSwift? That’s new. Both Romeo and Juliet? Hm. That costume change must be tricky–I talked to your dad, go pick out a white dress— And this is the part where you kill yourself on top of her seemingly dead body, isn’t it? Gah, but you are BOTH Romeo AND Juliet. How does that work?! DEATH-CEPTION.

Whenever entering a party, always know your exits: the doors, the windows, the windows with the fire escapes, the fragile looking walls that look like they could be kicked down. You never know when a fire or a riot or an apocalypse will happen. Also, if an awkward moment happens, nothing eases the tension like an escape that makes everyone think that there is a riot, fire, or apocalypse happening.

Sometimes, you see someone on the bus that looks like a Muppet and you will want to tell them. Don’t do it.

People will say, “That’s so deep” for the most ridiculous things.
Omg, He wrote Peace Love Happiness on his wall. That’s so deep.
Omg, you only live once?? That’s so deep.
Omg, my sugar cookies burned in the oven. That’s so deep.
Omg, the DON’T WALK symbol is red like the blood that will be spilled when ‘the man’ smacks you down, j-walker. That’s so deep.

I wish my life were like a video game. I would be like Scott Pilgrim, but with a college degree. I really love garlic bread.

I hope you enjoyed these bits of wisdom and thoughts from my brain.
Have a lovely day my home slices 🙂
Peace out.

Geeking Out a Bit Over Christmas

26 Dec

Hey guys!

I hope you guys had a very lovely Christmas! My Christmas was full of geeky awesomeness, including an entire collection of Shakespeare plays with an embossed cover, the best coffee mug that I’ve ever seen, Christmas dinner that turned into a science experiment, and the new episode of Doctor Who.

[Holy flipping animal crackers y’all. As I am typing this– like right now– my youngest sister has put some batteries in an old Tickle Me Elmo– and it seems to be releasing a death scream and having a seizure at the same time. I might need to obtain some holy water… where does one buy holy water?]

The embossed collection of Shakespeare plays is pretty self-explanatory, but I feel like the coffee mug deserves special attention.

Nothing says ‘Good Morning’ like a coffee mug that’s painted the brightest yellow imaginable.

You may be asking yourself, ‘Well, that’s a pretty mug, but what makes it the ‘world’s best coffee mug”?

Well, there are three reasons:

1) It holds coffee.

Yeah, true story, bro.

Most things made to go with my coffee have earned a spot on my “Favorite Things Ever” list.

2) The line they used makes scansion look cool.

The line is from TS Elliot’s “Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock”. Normally, I don’t like Elliot’s poetry. I find it a bit pretentious and, as a student, annoying. However, this line is awesome– but not because of it’s meaning.
This line is cool because of how you can interpret the scansion. [It’s a fancy word referring to how the syllables in a word are accented. It just gives you a feel for the rhythem of a line. Words can either be accented, which is marked by a –, or unaccented, which is marked with a “U” shape.]

As a student, scansion is usually very painful because, half the time, it’s never very clear why a word is labeled as ‘accented’. BUT here it’s pretty cool.

Why??

Well, the accent pattern of the phrase “coffee spoons” makes a coffee spoon shape!

*Mind Blown*

Woah.

3) This line is super ironic considering they put it on a coffee cup.

This line from TS Eliot’s ‘The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock’ illustrates exactly why context is important, guys.

In short, Mr. Prufrock is a sad sad man.

Being able is ‘measure out [his] life in coffee spoons’ is, more or less, another way of measure how droll and melancholy his life has become. It’s not something to be happy about.

It become especially ironic when you consider that the creators of this cup used this literary reference, bright colors, and old-school typography to attract coffee drinkers, yet the context does not. Irony at its best.

There’s something about waking up to the morning– well, early afternoon most days– to a cup of coffee that causes you to question your life choices while feeding you delicious awesomeness.

[I wanted to get some holy water, but I feel like Elmo is watching me… his big old buggy eyes are just staring me down. Current theories include: possessed by the spirit of a velociraptor… well, that’s the end of the list. Amendments and additional theories are welcome.]

Anyway, Christmas dinner was a science experiment. Unfortunately, it was like one of those chemistry experiments from high school where you put too much of one chemical that you can’t pronounce into another chemical and, somehow, it doesn’t turn the special shade of pink that your chem teacher said it would if you had done it right…

Well, maybe, it’s not at all like that. It also wasn’t like a Myth Buster’s science experiment with explosions, mischief, and chaos… which was slightly disappointing.

I’m not sure where I was going with that.

Point being, cooking is hard and I am not good at it… If you need proof, I’ve actually written about my masterful culinary abilities before.

Then Christmas ended with the lovely new Doctor Who Christmas Special featuring the newest companion, Oswin Oswald, who is really good at dying.

There seem to be a lot of Doctor Who characters that are very good at dying and then not dying and coming back to life…

[Speaking of dying and coming back to life, we stuck the elmo in the closet where its creepy eyes can’t follow me. I’m hoping that, like a Furby, it’ll shut up if no one touches it, goes near it, or says its name out loud. I’m also hoping that, unlike the Furby, it won’t try to murder me in my sleep.]

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the rest of your winter break and that it is not haunted by images of demon-elmo.

Peace out my home slices!

I’m Not Feelin’ Very 22

10 Dec

I turned 22 the other day, and it was not as I expected.

Like any self-respecting college female, I get most of my life advice from Taylor Swift songs.

Previously, this advice has done me well.  For example:

1. If a guy cheats on you or is a hipster, break up with him. Then cry about it, burn his pictures, remind him over and over that you will never ever ever ever be getting back together, and write a song about it.

2. If a guy you like is getting married to someone else, wait until the wedding starts, sneak in, hide behind the curtains, and then object to the wedding and force him to follow you out of the building. After all, he’s not an independent person with his own mind and doesn’t get a say in who he marries.

3. If people are mean to you, just remember: one day you’ll be famous.

4. Try to compare your love to fairy tales. All the time. All. the. Time.

5. Don’t skip the end of Shakespeare plays. Fun fact, ending up like Romeo and Juliet is never desirable.

It was disappointing, though, when I turned 22 and didn’t feel like dressing up like a hipster, falling love with strangers (stranger danger, y’all), or talking about my ex, like T-Swift said I would.

Being 22 is apparently supposed to be both ‘miserable and magical’… so, something like Harry Potter and the Angst-y Teenage Years would happen.

Needless to say, it didn’t. :/

Not cool T-Swift, not cool.

On a related note, I was originally going to talk about turning 22 in 22 pictures. When I tried that, though, they ended up as some derivative of this:

22.2

22.322.4

I don’t know. I guess there’s something about being the hero of time, a kick-ass physicist, or an Italian plumber that’s just very relateable 😉

As If I Need Another Reason Not To Drive

2 Dec

Hey guys!

The other day I was talking to a friend at work–uuuggghhh, work– and, whilst we were staring at customers like creepers, my friend showed me a neat trick– how to open ketchup like a classy person.

As someone without any etiquette training to speak of, I try to pick up tips on how to be “classy” when I can, so I got her to show me. Now, my friend, let me show you.

This is how I used to open ketchup:

ketchup

Ketchup: Now with .9% ACTUAL TOMATO and 100% FUN!!!

When I opened ketchup, my natural instinct was to tear off a corner and squeeze it out. There’s even an arrow in the top corners telling you to do that.

The corner-tear method is pretty awesome. After all, who doesn’t want to make their french fried and hamburgers look like they were created with the blood of the innocents?!

However, when I saw this new method, I was instantly converted:

ketchup1

Classy Ketchup: Now with .9% ACTUAL TOMATO and 100% LESS MURDER!

Whoa.

She uses her finger nails– though, for those of us that bite our nails, teeth work too if you’re careful to not spill it all over your face– and just tears it across the top.

NOW you got a pocket. You don’t have to create a battle scene with ketchup all over the fallen warriors that were your fries. You can just dip them in without the messy, stickiness. It’s like magic!

If you’re still into creating a battle scene with your fries, you just gotta be a bit more creative. For example, I usually take the ‘ritual-sacrifice-into-a-volcano-of-whirling-death’ method in which my french fry, for the continuance of the human race must sacrifice himself and appease the evil volcano wizards. Then, I eat him and humanity is saved.

However, there was one problem. Only one.

When I asked how she came up with this crazy awesome ketchup method, she said she needs it to drive.

“Wait, what? Driving?” I asked

“Yeah! I can hold the packet with one hand and dip the fry in with the other! No mess while I’m driving!”

She seemed really pleased with herself, but it did leave me with what looking question:

Is there a third hand that I don't know about? Can she drive with her knees?? These are the questions that plague my soul...

Is there a third hand that I don’t know about? Can she drive with her knees?? These are the questions that plague my soul…

How does she hold onto the wheel??

 

Oh look! It’s a thing!

5 Nov

So, guys, I bet you’re wondering:

Where’s Erica been these last few… weeks? Months? Whatever.

Well, y’all, it’s been a bit crazy.

I went to war to reclaim my family’s honor, fought some Huns, met a guy that was way too intense— oh, wait.

Never mind guys. I just remembered. I’m not Mulan.

Well, I guess, instead of fighting off the Huns, I fought off midterms. Same-same, really.

The main exam cycle is beginning to fade with the onset of Thanksgiving Break. Thus, 95% of campus is depressed, tired, and questioning their life choices. Meanwhile only 80% of campus is learning what an “overdraft fee” is.

It’s a party.

In light of this phase of college life, the popular choice of conversation topic is “Uhhhh! Professors! Money! Life!” As a senior, I’ve had this conversation countless times… It always makes me laugh when I hear stories of famous intellectuals that would have legit-intellectual conversation in college. What is this nonsense?!??

In other news, I’m currently procrastinating the writing of a short essay. It’s funny how professors say “short-essay” but they mean “an essay”. I think it’s a trick they teach you in graduate school. Perhaps there will be a whole class on it in law school.

Besides the “short essay”, you know what else is a lie??

THE CAKE


This is clearly the best way to end a blog post that has no cohesive structure or point… with a reference to a video game that is somewhat obscure. Really, though, cake is the best way to end anything.

Space Florida: It’s like Florida– In Space!

5 Sep

Hey guys!

I sat  in a Starbucks typing up an essay– which really means watching YouTube videos–when I over hear a couple of hipster-philosophers in their natural environment. This is a rare phenomena that I usually try to avoid… because it gets weird. However, on this occasion, I was too lazy to move my computer elsewhere.

The hipster-philosopher is a particular breed of  human arising from the interbreeding of the Human-Hipster and the Human-Philosopher, as the name would suggest.

The Hipster to Philosopher ratios vary from offspring to offspring, but their outer appearance is generally the same. The clothes are generally old-looking, if not actually old, and the males of this sub-species generally emit the strong aroma of too much cologne OR not enough bathing. This allows them to attract females of a similar sub-species, while turning away females that may not be interested in furthering the Hipster-Philosopher gene line.

There were two of these Hipster-Philosopher types sitting behind me, and me and everyone else in the room could hear their conversation. I’m pretty sure these guys managed to use the words “transcendent”, “existential”, and “gender roles” all in the same sentence. They probably deserve an award for that.

That was my attempt at Human taxonomy… perhaps, this is another reason why I’m going to law school and not medical school.

Speaking of, I’ve decided that I’m not going to be a normal lawyer. I’m gonna be a space lawyer.

Pretty much everything is better when you can put it in space. Everything.

If you wake up one morning and tell your kids that you’re taking a surprise vacation to Florida, you’ll get this reaction:

Because, what’s in Florida, really? Heat. Sweaty college students in costumes. More heat. Some sand. Palm Trees. A large mass of salty water. McDonalds.

BUT, if you tell them that, instead, you’re going to Space Florida, you’ll see this:

Space Florida: The Fun Times Are Never Ending
😀

This is probably why Buzz Lightyear is so much cooler than Woody. Because he’s from space.

The Feeling You Get When You Realize Your Brain Might Explode Into Confetti– Along With Your Bank Account

23 Aug

Right. Is the title long enough? I think I may need to insert a few more unnecessary words there.

I’m taking a self-defense class this semester. The problem with this, however, is that I’m about as non- threatening as a baby kangaroo. When I punched the cushy blue box thing, I half expected it to break out in giggling. Hopefully, by the end of the semester, I’ll be able to give that condescending giggly box a roundhouse kick to the face.
I’m also taking a couple of English and Economics classes since this is *sigh* my last semester. In these first few days, though, I’ve been more stressed out than usual because the textbooks are so ridiculously expensive.

On one hand, you have the English Department full of professors who aren’t particularly wealthy, so they’ll say, “Yeah, I know you guys are probably as broke as I am—haha– so the books for this class are fairly cheap.” Then, they’ll look at you as though you’re supposed to be thankful for the “cheap” books… right.

Well, Doctor Professor Literature Man or Lady, let me introduce you to a concept called ‘adding and subtracting’.
Sure, the books on your syllabus would normally be cheap because they’ve been in the public domain for some 200 years now. BUT, Mr. Professor, in your syllabus, do you say, “Just bring whatever copy you want to class”?

No. You don’t.

According to your syllabus, we have to have the Penguin-Carried-All-The-Way-Back-From-The-9th-Circle-Of-Hell Edition, so we can all “follow along in class” and “engage in a cohesive discussion”. After all, maybe by having the same edition, we’ll all suddenly be inspired to actually have a discussion about the relevance of that random semi-colon that you pointed out.

Oh, and, there is also that small line that says, “No devices with an internet connection are allow in class.” Guess what has an internet connection, Doctor Professor? My kindle and almost every eReader out there. Fantastic.

Maybe, it wouldn’t be so bad if it was just that one special edition that we needed for class. Then, perhaps, you could still get away with calling your book list “cheap”.

But you didn’t put just one book on your syllabus that requires a particular edition, Mr. Professor.

You put ten.

One for every level of hell and an extra just for kicks, I suppose.

 

In the Economics department, you’ll see an equally expensive book list—except it’ll just be one book. The professors in this department, however, are much more direct about the price—they’ll tell you on the first day of class that the book costs more than what we make in a month.

This is the point in which a challenge is issued.

Challenge, if you choose to except it (or if you can’t afford the new book), is to find the book cheaply.

It would seem simple, right? Kind of like economics seems to “simply” deal with supply and demand, we students need to “simply” find the book for the lowest price possible.

Like economics, however, things are not that simple.

There are your standard book sites: your campus bookstore, Barnes and Nobel, Amazon, eBay, Craigslist.

These site generally sell hard copies and, in order to get one, you almost always have to make sure that you’re buying from another person—not the company. The cheapest books are usually being resold by other students.

These books, however, have a strong demand—namely, all the other students in your class. If you’re quick, you can get a good physical copy for maybe 25% off the new price. Occasionally, you can rent books for an even steeper reduction in price, but not all services provide it and, sometimes, it’s costly or time consuming to return it.

However, you have another option if you have a stable internet connection and a penchant for look at bright light—namely, eBooks. Or, even, rented eBooks.

With new devices and newer websites, there’s an ever increasing source for textbooks, and, with some patience, students can decrease the price from a month’s wages to only a week’s wages.

In the econ department, however, I can only imagine a group of econ professors trying to one-up each other on stories of how their students got their books.

Regardless, I now have to sit around checking tracking numbers every two seconds, hoping my books come in before assignments are due. In the mean time, I’ve been on YouTube and I was over joyed to find out the Dwight Schrutt (from the The Office) is 1) a person in real life and 2) has made a few YouTube videos. This one is my favorite so far:

Rainbow Space Unicorns

10 Aug

Hey guys!

The class-free-summer months are almost over—classes start next week—and, at the moment, I am faced with monumental chore of packing.

Ugh. Packing.

As a freshman, I used to try to stick everything in some sort of luggage or cardboard box.  Now I just throw everything in a trash bag. Except the pointy things.

Over the last few weeks, a couple of lovely people have given me some of those awards that you pass around to other bloggers. It’s pretty cool of them. I, however, I am not very good at following directions. I normally just thank the person on my “About Blog” page, today, I has idea.

Instead of packing and cleaning and being “responsible”, I figured I’d take a moment to fulfill one of the requests of these awards—list seven facts about myself.

Fact #1

When I was little I used to run on my tippy-toes because it made me feel like a velociraptor.

Fact #2

Also when I was little, I won a Halloween coloring contest at a local Publix. I thought I was going to get a plaque with my name on it, ride in a sports car during a parade, and have the city re-named after me…but I only got a movie—The Black Cauldron. It’s not a particularly great movie, but it was the movie that led me to say ‘munchies and crunchies’ in a high nasally voice whenever I was hungry.

Fact #3

I used to play Neopets with every spare moment of time that I had. I’ve clocked a ridiculous amount of hours on that website, but that website is why I learned how to draw things on Paint.

Fact #4

I’ve recently discovered that I can draw almost anything on MS Paint, as long as that thing can be reduced to some sort of potato shape.

Fact #5

Well… hm. I think I’ve run out of things.

I’ve lived for 21 years. You’d think I’d have plenty to say…

Oh, wait. Here’s a thing:

This is the rare and beautiful mana-potat-ee… yes.
Manatees are highly majestic creatures, which makes them my favorite animal.

Fact #6

Tricksie Hobbitses…

I love potatoes.

Fact #7

That’s the best way to end a blog post, right? With a rainbow space unicorn.

The Land Before Time MCIIVI: Never Enough Tree Stars

27 Jul

Hey guys!

Sometimes people ask me a simple question, and I have no idea how to answer. Stumped and confused, I fumble over words until I can change the subject.

The question, though worded differently each time, often has the same meaning:

Hey, what did you do [last night]/[last weekend]/[over the summer]/[during the two weeks you weren’t writing a blog post]?

If this question seems easy to you, it’s because you have a life. It’s because, unlike me, you went out and saw a movie, went to a party, or did anything worth talking about.

So what have it been doing these past two weeks?

Gaming. Playing Dragon Age: Origins, particularly.

This game does to me what the TARDIS does to Doctor Who or what a DeLorean does to Marty McFly.

You use it in the mid-after noon, then, suddenly, you look up and it’s the early morning… three days later and you’re surrounded by empty soda cans that you don’t fully remember drinking.

I’m in my early 20’s and– according to other people’s responses to “what did you do last night?”—this should be the time when I am making loads of bad life choices. Instead, I sit in my comfy chair and play through amazing plot structures and character interactions…

Lately, however, I haven’t been able to play because, in the same room that I’m in, my sister is watching the most annoying movie possible—OMG TREE STARS 😮

My youngest sister got our old VCR working and has been watching The Land Before Time MCVIII: There are Never Enough Tree Stars endlessly– and it is driving me insane.

I doubt there are many of y’all who have not, at some point, watched The Land Before Time, but for those of you who haven’t, here’s a recap:

The Land Before Time stars a little brontosaurus that calls himself “Little Foot”. Why? Because he’s a kid and, thus, has little feet. You would think that might present a problem, particularly when he grows up. It’d become very ironic. Don’t worry, though. As it turns out, Little Foot doesn’t age. Not a problem.

Little Foot has four friends with whom he gets into shenanigans.

There’s Ducky who looks nothing like a duck. She has a voice that is high pitched, annoying, and makes you want to punt her across a football field.

What kind of dinosaur is she? I dunno.

Not a duck.

She has a ‘brother’ named Spike who is about as close to being her actual brother as Spike (from Buffy the Vampire Slayer) is. Nevertheless, she drags him around on their adventures while he just sits there rolling his eyes. True story. He only ever rolls his eyes. Spike never speaks. Ever.

Then you have Cera, who is that kid who just kind of want to punch in the face—that kid on the playground who is loudly proclaiming,

“You better play with me and do what I say, or I won’t play with you anymore and I’ll tell my Dad and the heavens will reign down fire on you and your children and your children’s children.

Then, every time she has a plan, it’s a bad one. If Cera tells you to go left, don’t. You will get stuck in a tar pit. Eaten by a T-Rex. Fall off a cliff. Stuck in quick sand. Mugged.  Just sayin.

There’s also Petrie… he flies. I’m pretty sure that’s all he does.

This group of five spends all their time listening to what their parents say, then doing the exact opposite.

“Don’t go to the edge of the valley, kids. You’ll get eaten.”

Done.

“Stay away from T-Rex’s, kids. They’ll eat you.”

Done. It’s a good thing I taste so delicious!

Oh hey, and what is a ‘tree star’??

It’s a leaf. That’s all. It’s just a leaf.

I think might be going a little bit crazy.

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