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Monthly Archives: June 2007

Oh, not for serious.

I went to request my transcript from UGA this morning. This time, I came dually armed with a Master Card, my Checking Account Number, and the wisdom of cruel experience.

…all of which proved completely impotent and irrelevant, because UGA only takes Cash Payments for transcripts. You have to mail them $2.00 — to a PO Box, no less, so you can’t FedEx it.

I just don’t know anymore, you guys.

In other harrowing news involving my payment of cash for goods and/or services, I’ve so far dedicated $1,105 plus gas and money order fees to land my new apartment. And I’ve probably expended twice that amount’s worth of anxiety. The rental agency requires that all cash payments be left in their drop box within 24 hours of requesting them. And they refuse to request it all as a big lump sum, which means lots of frenzied trips out to Beaverton at 11 at night. They will also call me at work demanding I fax them some documentation which I do not possess within the hour.

I’m going to be broke for probably the next month or so, and I’d be flipping out about it more were it not for the sustaining knowledge that I will be spending that impoverished month in an apartment with newly finished hardwood floors and a semi-separate kitchen room.

I’ll post pictures once I’ve moved in. Canada pictures, too. I swear.

More Music

First thing’s first:  This is linked from WordPress’s main page.  Such a cool idea.  And sweet God, America has a lot of money.  I’d be lying, though, if I said I wasn’t into it mostly for the map aspect.

Second thing is more Laura Nyro.   I’ve decided that –vocal restraint be damned — I really do like her music.   It’s a far cry from the 70’s AM easy listening stuff to which I’m usually drawn, but there are times when it just kind of hits the spot for me, aurally.

This song is my favorite off of Eli and the Thirteenth Confession.  I think we can all agree that the bombast is completely justified here, if only for her repetition of the powerful epithet “super-ride inside my love-thing”.   I especially like the song’s climax.  (That’s a pun … only you won’t know why it’s a pun until you’ve listened to the song.)  I think of Ashley whenever I listen to this, for some reason; it just sort of seems like it should be her making love theme song.   “You may leave the fair, but you’ll be back, I swear.”  That just screams ‘Ashley’ to me.  Next time you’re having sex, Ashley, throw this on and see if it doesn’t nicely compliment your mental state.  Also, I hope I have not offended you with this paragraph.  It was certainly not my intention.

The Confession (It’s the thirteenth track on the album.  Get it?)

This second song is a live performance of another track off that album (recorded maybe 10 years later), and it’s the first thing I ever heard of Nyro’s.  It’s radically different from the original version, and while I really like the album cut, this one is more soulful and less cluttered. 

Sweet Blindness (It’s about drinking.)

 Friday is the last night I will spend in the first apartment I’ve ever rented.  I think I would be more sad about this if the place hadn’t been such a sty for the past month and a half.  I kind of lost the energy for keeping it immaculate once the end was in sight.  On Saturday, I am going out to pick up a van at the U-Haul place on Sandy Boulevard, and hauling all of my shit over to Chez Rousse.  And Sunday! Sunday I am going to nab that God-Damned dispoal camera from Emily’s room, walk it over Safeway, and get us all some overdue Canada pictures.

Nostalgia.

So I’ve been carrying a $450 account balance at UGA for about a year now. It is, I think, a penalty for staying in my dorm for about a month after I was no longer a registered student.

I’ve been diligently deleting the “Account Balance Due” notices in my Inbox ever since they first appeared, mostly because the only threat UGA offers against non-payment is the inability to register for classes in the coming semester. But since Portland State requires ALL transcripts (even for the credits you’d like to pretend don’t exist), I’m finally having to suck it up and pay them off so the hold can be taken off my records.

I’m on their payment website last night, and I go to enter my credit card information, and I pull down the menu to select ‘Visa’, and…no dice.

Those bastards don’t take Visa.

They take American Express. They take Discover. What the hell? Who does that? Master Card and Visa are bank-backed. AmEx and Discover are not. That’s why everyone takes Visa: because the transaction is considered much more secure than with a standard credit card. When book keepers record sales made on Visa, they record them as cash sales: that’s how secure Visa is. That’s why everyone has a Visa card — because they trust that they’ll be able to use it for things like paying off their student account balance online so they won’t have to make the trek up to the bursar’s office during business hours.

Instantly, I am filled with a combination of dumbfounded chagrin and blog-fueling vitriol so potent and curiously specific that I am transported back to this pleasant scene. It’s like Marcel biting into the goddamn Madeline.

Why won’t these people just TAKE my fucking money?

It’s like the payment is beside the point. It’s not about the revenue, it’s about me and the rest of the student body having to struggle, having to play the game properly.

Nicely played, Finchy. It looks like you’ve won this round.

Anyway, they also take Master Card, and my mom has one of those, so I’m not planning on a pilgrimage to North Campus just yet.

While we’re on the subject of games, Emily is whopping all of your asses in the comment contest. She left 6 on my last entry. It’s like my blog posts get special Emily sub-posts to compliment them, which is more awesome than I can say. Frustrating blue computer cords indeed, my friend. Keep up the good work.

Canada pictures are still on their way. In the mean time, I found these when I was rooting around for my check book this morning, and I figured I might as well post them. They’re from the futile Philadelphia trip (Nicely played as well, Internal Revenue Service. Your hidden job interview sites are a testament to making things difficult at a time when convenience has become king. Ms. Finch tips her cap to you, I am sure.) that I took last January.

Philadelphia

This is the only picture actually taken in Philadelphia, go figure. The majority of them are from Virgina and Harrisburg and North Carolina on the way back (I boldly ventured up I-95 on the way up, so I could see all the cities, and retreated back on I-81 through the mountains, when the cities turned out to be less than I had expected [Wow. That was lame. Sorry.]). I don’t even remember what this building is. I’m leaning toward City Hall, though. First person to tell me what it actually is gets a prize.

West Virginia is for Contented Resignment.

This is a the first rest stop you will come to when traveling into West Virginia on I-81 South. Ok, sure, it’s not the most exciting picture in the world, but it’s notable (to me, anyway) for several reasons:

1. Cool Shape.

2. This was the first time I’d been to West Virginia, and the beauty of the place was making me feel a lot less like a failure, for some reason.

3. The combined effect of a rest stop with a cool shape in the bucolic middle of nowhere in a state I’ve never been to before made me a little giddy.

4. It was in this rest stop parking lot that I decided to give up the dream of striking it out on my own, and just move to Portland. Throwing in the towel didn’t feel nearly so awful as I thought it would, either. Mostly, there was relief. And Portland has turned out to be a pretty good decision, so far. (Props again to my Comment Champion, the Wayward E).

Hey, so Erin:

I just emailed you the tracking number for your accordion. I apologize for all the delays. Accordion transport turned out to be much more complicated than I imagined.

I packed it myself, though, and did so with enough love and finesse and bubble wrap to more than make up for the tardiness. Everyone at work who saw the case while I was wrapping it wanted to know where I got the “awesome vintage suitcase”, which got a little annoying because I had to explain to them that (a) it’s an accordion case, (b) no, I don’t play the accordion, (c) it’s for a friend, OK? and (d) NO, she doesn’t play the accordion, either. Now everyone at work thinks I’m crazy.

Canada was great. There’s an awful amount of time spent sitting at the border to get there, but you’re next to the Pugett sound so it smells like the beach the entire time.

I bought beer legally, but that wasn’t all that exciting because 14 year olds were buying beer legally right next to me. Nobody cards in Vancouver. This was a bit jarring to someone who, while working at the Golden Pantry, was brainwashed to believe that if you forget to card your grandmother she will rip off her grandmother disguise and turn out to be a 16-year old and a cop and a prison sentence. Seeing crunked up 14-year olds with braces in bars with is a little jarring, too.

I will post pictures soon. Mine won’t be nearly as high quality as Emily and Ashley’s (I’m the last person on Earth who buys disposable cameras, it seems), and I’m pretty sure that most of them are of boring ass shit out near the hotel we stayed in, but hey: they’re still pictures of a foreign country.

I would go into more detail about the trip, but everyone who reads this either was there or should have been there (Ahem. Erin.)

Whenever I read a whole bunch of books by the same author in a short period of time, I unconsciously start to write like that author, no matter what the context. When I was 15, even my IMs were John Updike. Emily loaned me a whole bunch of Joan Didion last month, and as I quickly read over this post, I’m already tracing certain phrasings back to Fumbling Torwards Bethlehem. Sorry if that’s weird for you guys.

Anyway, the book I’m reading now is from William, and it’s by Don DeLillo, and there’s no chance in hell of me ever writing like Don DeLillo (No amount of reading could ever make me write like I had something important to say). I should sound like myself again by the next post.