25 August 2007

where, now?

It’s Saturday night, and I’m home drinking beer, eating chocolate, reading friends’ blogs, and thinking it’s about time I did a bit of blogging myself. My wonderful and amazing boyfriend is back in his 'home'-town of Reno, NV, my bike is as improved as it’s going to get tonight, and it’s highly unlikely that I’m going to rally to go out to the bar. So, what’s up? I broke my camera about a month ago, and so I’ve been reticent to post, as so many of the things that have been going on seem to be more visual than verbal.

BUT… I quit my job, had a great “transition party,” went to my cousin’s wedding, backpacked solo in the Hoover/Yosemite Wilderness for a week, drove north for a while (Reno, NV; Oakridge, OR; Portland, OR; Naches, WA; back to Oakridge; back to Reno), came back to SF, hung out for a bit, spent a week on Santa Cruz Island, came home, went to another wedding, and have been chillin’ ever since.

Highlights have been: the giant sequoia cone I got as a going away present and the matching NPS belt, the abundance of postcards from N. as he travels the western hemisphere, compliments on my dress-for-weddings, seeing old friends, making new friends, the beauty of combining red wine, espresso, and chocolate cake, knitting like a banshee, riding and fussing with bikes, climbing some stuff, the crazy but loveable dogs, and deciding to not go to Burning Man.

Classes at Stanfurd start in a month, and then who knows how life will change, but I’m guessing it will be good. At least going in to it my computer is going to have 2 GB of RAM and my commuter bike will have bullhorns, so how worried can I be?

Just kidding, I'm going to the bar.

26 April 2007

not quite green thumb

I have successfully grown a very, very sad wavy-leaved soap plant (Chlorogalum pomeridianum). She came from a project I worked on last fall that involved lots of ground disturbance, which then turned up lots of soap plant bulbs, which were mostly eaten by hungry animals. But not this one, who I saved and quasi planted, mostly just to see what would happen. She sat in her pot looking like a very dry, very hairy coconut for about five months, then finally sprouted these four very sad leaves. But, in the way of plants, nonetheless managed to bloom. I'm very proud of her, and will transplant somewhere with more soil depth soon. Also of note is that I was told that these guys only flower at night, but clearly this is not the case.
Yay for California native plants stolen (salvaged?) from national parks!

13 March 2007

Well, shit.

On October 7th, 2006, sitting in a loud, dark bar in the Lower Haight, a good friend asked me if he could give me a piece of advice. I had been whingeing and moaning about life, overwork, applying to PhD programs, etc. “Of course,” I blinked; open to most anything but not expecting much.

“Kyla,” he said, “shit, or get off the pot.”

I was a bit taken aback, given that Tom has been nothing but kind and supportive for the time I’ve known him, and harsh comments are unexpected after the first few pints of Racer 5. I realized quickly, however, that he made an excellent point. I could continue to complain about the things standing in my way, or I could just do what I needed to do and move on.

Taking the advice to heart, I promised Tom that I would indeed “shit,” and I stumbled home to [sleep first then] start really applying myself to this whole grad school issue.

Months later, I am happy to report that I have accepted Stanford’s offer of admission, and I will start there in the fall. Thanks, Tom, and more soon!

28 January 2007

Taking a bit of inspiration from Ms Rustygrass' wrist cuffs, the fact that I got an interchangeable watchband watch for Christmas but with ugly leather bands, and the scrap ends of a pair of non-Carhartt work pants, we have a new watch! I'm not sure this satisfies my need for a "professional looking" watch that covers up the tattoo, but I'm fairly happy with it.

The next question is, why do I keep making things out of turquoise, green, and brown? Wierd.

25 January 2007

Oh, the conundrums...

So, here's the question of the day: the NY Times says that by wearing cotton clothes that have to be washed more often, I'm actually doing more damage to the environment than if I were to wear only synthetics but just half-assedly wash them. It turns out that the environmental impact (e.g. energy used) of repeated washings is way greater than that of producing a synthetic garment.

But here's the thing - I bike a lot and I wear Tom's Natural deodorant. The deodorant choice is mostly out of a desire to not (maybe) give myself breast cancer or Alzheimers. The biking is part health, part gasoline, part finding-parking-in-my-neighborhood-blows. Valid, no? But my selfish desires to avoid cancer (sometimes) and not troll for parking means most of my clothing needs to be washed fairly frequently. Add to that the need for field clothes, office clothes, and gym clothes, and let's just say I do a good deal of laundry. And frankly, synthetic or natural, it all gets pretty funky pretty quick. It's one thing to think you might smell a bit ripe, it's another repel the general public.

So what do I do? I'd already accepted that by biking I might actually hurt the planet, but maybe if I switch to aluminium-based antiperspirant that'll offset the biking, I can wash my clothes less, die earlier, and thus balance out? Or just wear synthetics and throw them away? Or maybe hemp? Is hemp the answer?