Friday, October 31, 2008

All Hallow's Eve

Halloween used to be my favorite holiday. Now there is so much pressure to come up with a clever costume that it is hard to enjoy it. Actually, that's not true. Halloween is fun once the costume has been decided--it is the time of deciding that is stressful. I thought I would be Pippi Longstocking, and I still might be...but I'm starting to feel self conscious about wearing a little dress. I'm not feeling so great about my body right now. I'm now leaning towards wearing pajamas, messing up my hair, carrying around a tooth brush and teddy bear. That is minimal skin exposure, and minimal stress. But, we'll see.

I also always think of ideas right before Halloween! I wish I had decided I wanted to be She-Ra, or Daryl Hannah from Blade Runner, or Magenta, or the radiator lady from Eraserhead (that's a definite for next year!) before the eleventh hour. Well, I suppose I've had more important things on my mind.

Look forward to some photos either way.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The vog

It was another grey day today in Honolulu. Apparently there is something called "the vog" which is from the volcano on the Big Island. It makes the air thick with a mineral smell and the air feels heavy in my lungs. I'm not the only one that it makes feel sick. Many other people get sick during the vog.

I was looking through my photos and found these of my dad wrapped in paper. He has been trying to get me to do a saran wrapping too--maybe this Christmas. Also, I realized I never posted the video from Diamond Head a few months ago. So here it is!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Bugsy Malone

I love it! I just watched Bugsy Malone again for the first time in at least 10 years. Amazing! Recently, I've been wanting to just sit around and watch old movies or kids movies. Somehow my mind needs to turn off at the end of the day.

Yesterday I decided I wanted to make this really easy lemon pie that is just with sweetened condensed milk, lemons, and whipped cream. It stared because I saw these mini graham cracker shells that were on sale. So, I bought the lemons (which I discovered in the check out lane were 5 dollars!! for three lemons!!! don't they have lemon trees in Hawaii?!) some sweetened condensed milk and NO whipped cream. I went to three stores and couldn't find any anywhere. So tonight I found some. This recipe is easy unless you have to hand whip the cream...then it takes forever and you are hot and sweaty and not very hungry anymore... But, my little pies are in the refrigerator now, solidifying, I hope. Half way through pouring the pie into the crusts, I realized that I needed more crusts! So I ran to the store and now I have 10 mini pies. What am I going to do with 10 mini pies?! I only wanted one! I have now learned a lesson about making desserts when living alone---BAD IDEA!! I was trying to think whom I could give them to, but all of them require transportation and I'm not so sure 20 minutes on the bus will agree with my little pies... So I will just have to eat them all...oh bother. And I have been so good recently! Oh well, the gym by my house opens soon--I'll just have to burn it off this weekend.

Alright, off to do laundry and read articles. The exciting life of a grad student...

Monday, October 27, 2008

100th post!

I just realized this is my 100th post. I am still such a newbie in the blogging community. I wouldn't actually consider myself part of the bogging community at all, really...

Anyway, I took my test on Friday. It did not go as well as I had hoped. I studied so hard, I knew everything by heart, I understood the theory behind all of the physical and biological models of benthic biological oceanography. Unfortunately, there was a question on the test that had nothing to do with everything I had studied. It was a terrible, pit in the stomach, wind knocked out of me, want to vomit moment. So, not so good. We'll see.

It's been a very rainy weekend. Which is kind of unprecedented in Hawaii. Yes, it rains here, but usually in spurts, and then the sky clears up. This was a grey, dreary, incessant rain that reminded me more of a Massachusetts rain than Honolulu rain. Not to say I don't love Massachusetts rain--I do.

Last night I had a wonderful dinner at a local restaurant with some friends of mine. We decided that we needed to treat ourselves and have a nice, sit-down dinner with wine and waitresses. It was lovely. Afterwords, we went to a bar to get an after dinner drink. As we were sitting at one of the only two tables in the place, this drunken guy in an indecipherable bright yellow costume of some sort decided to come over and give me a hug and kiss me on the cheek. I was unfazed. My friend however, was scandalized. He was so flabbergasted that men would do that. I feel like it happens all the time, you just move on and continue your conversation. My other friend agreed with me because the same thing happens to her as well. You just have to analyze the situation--is he drunk and aggressive? drunk and harmless? sober and awkward? I deemed this particular character as drunk and harmless. I saw him coming in for a hug, tried to dissuade him with my eyes, was unsuccessful, and moved on. If however, he was not harmless, there is an entirely different protocol that involves knees and elbows flying towards sensitive fleshy areas. Anyway, I was surprised my friend was so alarmed with this behavior. He's a man too, but he says he would never do anything like that. I tired to explain to him that as a woman, you could be in a room with 50 men who would never do something like that, but there's always one who would, and there only needs to be one. You just learn from experience how to deal with that one--and that is why women (or maybe it's just me) don't always have the best opinion of the opposite sex.

Well, enough for tonight. I have a busy week ahead that ends with Halloween! Preparations need to be made... I bought my students Halloween candy though, I will buy their love!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Chicken pot pie

On my way home I had a craving for chicken pot pie. I think it is a sort of stress = comfort food type syndrome. Instead of making it from scratch (which would take forever) I bought a frozen one and was very excited until I saw that it takes 60 minutes in the toaster oven!!! What? Since when do frozen foods take an hour to heat? And now it is almost 9 and I haven't eaten yet. I hope it's worth it.

Yesterday I lost my student ID with my $100 bus pass sticker on it. I was really sad and frustrated. But then today, I was instantly elated when I discovered that some kind-hearted person had taken the time to hand it in to the ID making office! I was not ready to pay another $100 to ride the bus for only two more months in the semester.

I am studying for my midterm and discovering how little I know. It's one of those things where I've realized I should have started studying earlier. Ugh! Well, I better get back to it.

Also, I voted yesterday--yay! I'm sure my vote in Hawaii will make all the difference...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

bobtail again

It has been brought to my attention that it has been a while since I wrote anything on my blog. Busy busy busy!

On Saturday night, I went looking for bobtail squid again, and this time was much more successful. I saw a giant moray eel, a night octopus, several bobtail squid, a puffer fish, a trumpet fish, and more. I love going to the beach at night. It's so peaceful, and there are so many amazing things to see if you know where to look. We also caught some crabs that we cooked and ate--they weren't too bad.

This week I have another midterm, which is why I haven't been writing, and might not write for a while...unless I need some procrastination time, which I'm sure I will.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I'm there

I'm at that place where I've been writing for so long that even though I know it is pretty terrible, I don't want to write anymore or even spend time fixing it. That's where I am. It's never a good thing...I know if I could just spend a little more time on this, I might get a good grade. But since I am tired and have to wake up early...I might be done.


Ahh! Trichotillomania, you are killing me... Poo. There is hair all over the library. I need to figure out another nervous habit that doesn't disfigure me--otherwise I will be bald before I am halfway through grad school.

Monday, October 13, 2008


I just gave myself bangs. I think I like them. But I haven't decided yet. They make my face look fat, but then again, that might not be the bangs fault--I'm almost positive I've gained weight here, but I don't have a scale to tell for sure. Anyway, here is a photo :)


This weekend I have had a take-home midterm for my animal behavior class. It is three essay questions, six pages each. I'm having trouble getting motivated to get it done. Ugh. It is taking so much time away from the reading I need to do for research! I want to get my NSF proposal done by Wednesday, but that is the day I need to hand in my midterm, and I have another paper due for my oceanography class on Friday. This is going to be a crazy week. Time has been moving so fast recently. Every week I feel like I go to class on Monday and then all of the sudden it's Friday and I haven't gotten anything done.

Last night I was waiting for the bus, reading an article at the bus stop. I had a highlighter in my hand. I saw a guy walking towards me...a bum actually. I'm not even surprised anymore. He walked up to me with a piece of chicken in his hand and tried to rub his arm on my highlighter. After this encounter, I just went back to reading my article. It doesn't even faze me anymore. Here he is:

Also, I decided to draw my oceanography professor. He is so nerdy! He always wears shorts and white socks and a Hawaiian shirt tucked into his belt. He makes terrible puns and I think I am getting a little crush on him...not really, but he's cool.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The neighbors had a baby

So, they are not really my neighbors, they live across from me, but they spend all their time on their lanai which I can see outside my window. They had a baby last week and it cries a lot. And they have a squeaky toy that they squeeze at it all day. When I first heard the squeaky toy, I thought I had a mouse in my apartment and I was crawling around all over trying to find it...until I looked out the window. I might have to start closing my window. It's surprising how much noise it blocks when it is closed--but then my apartment get's hot....

I need to figure out an analogous summer outfit to my favorite body-masking sweatpants and old-man sweater. I wore sweatpants and old-man sweater the other day, and it works when you are sitting in a freezing cold Starbucks, but when you are trying to teach a lab in a classroom in Hawaiian heat, it is not as comfortable. Maybe I will invest in a muumuu. Grad school and living alone is not great for my waist line--another reason I should do that triathlon in April.

I went to the commissary today and have tons of toilet paper! Yay! I spent way too much money on food, but hopefully that means I won't have to go shopping again any time soon. Also, I got a pomegranate as a treat to myself :)

My dad sent me this. Maybe I can claim that I am a "scholar" so I can get an invite to this library. This is the coolest library I've ever seen.

Also he sent me this video. I want to be a part of this team of scientists traveling around the world taking a record of ocean species... Maybe someday. Until then, I will just work on my octopus species.

New Species on Australian Reefs from NTDTV on Vimeo.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A new low

I stole toilet paper from campus today. This is a new low in my graduate school career. I am going shopping tomorrow at the commissary, where everything is cheaper, so I'm trying to hold out!!

I found out yesterday that the oceanography department here was just ranked second--above SCRIPPS in the academic analytic list!!! And the marine sciences program is ranked 4th, which is still pretty good. So that made me feel nice.

I drew a picture of someone on the bus on my iPod touch, but I can't figure out how to get it on my computer...poo.

Midterms are coming up this month. When I realized this, I freaked out a little. I've been so focused on trying to figure out what I am going to study and teaching that I forgot I am supposed to be learning things in these classes. UGH! I'm not feeling good about this...

Also, this is hilarious. I guess it was just lucky there were so many photographers there to immortalize this moment in Japanese history...

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Video Procrastination

I was playing with my iMovie and made a little video from some artwork I did a while ago. Enjoy.


Today someone was giving away free avocados. I got three, fresh, ripe avocados, for free! I made some guacamole when I got home-mmm delicious.

Not much happened today...I have been spacing out on the bus recently, so no new drawings. But I'll keep a look out for some characters tomorrow.

I feel like I was going to write something, but now I can't remember. Hmm... Here is a picture of the crazy helmet urchins they have here. These are what I was walking all over last night while trying to avoid being washed out to sea.

I am exhausted today. My thighs are burning from all the rock climbing yesterday. When I try to sit down, they give out and I just plop down with a thud. I need to work out more. My friends want me to join them in a triathlon in April--I'm thinking about doing it :) I'm going to need to develop some energy before that happens though...and I may have to get a bicycle.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Rock Tako!!!

Tonight I went to go look for the "rock tako" or Octopus oliveri an intertidal octopus species that no one really knows anything about. The guy who has started to do some research on it took me out to the rocks in Kewalo to see if we could find some. We found six! But it was not easy...

First, I got there and he said--do you have your bathing suit on? I said yes (thank goodness I did). Apparently the pants I was wearing were not good for the water, so he made me take them off. So, that's how it started. Also, one of the professors (his boss) came along with us--I might end up working with him too. We'll see. Anyway, then we climbed down the rocks (easier said than done) towards the water. The rocks are giant and slippery and steep and the waves come about every three minutes and crash against me and the rocks. Not super safe... And tonight was pretty mild apparently. So, I had to channel my inner mountain goat and climb along the rocks, stepping on the urchins and cowries (giant cowries!!!) and avoid the occasional tsunami. There were a couple of times when I was hit hard out of the blue and the guys asked if I was ok. I felt kind of silly. I was trying to keep up, but I was moving pretty slowly and my bathing suit was falling off. I'm hoping that I can get better at this... I felt like I was being watched to see if I could pass the test of studying this species. I'm not sure that I did. But, we found six of them--actually I should say, they found six. I managed not to die, which I suppose was an accomplishment of some sort. At the end of the night, Chris (that is the guy's name who is studying them at the moment) drove me home and talked about some possible studies. So that was promising. I'm really excited though. I think that this could be fun. I just need to get it all figured out. But I'm excited to have some ideas at least :) Yay!

On Friday I went with my oceanography class to Paiko Bay to do take some sediment samples again. Here are some photos.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


Today my students talked about their report topics and critiqued each other. They are doing so well! I always have a kind of high after teaching. It is so much fun when they are into what they are talking about.

Tomorrow I have a presentation on a proposal to work on bobtail squid for my animal behavior class. My professor has made us all use overheads instead of Power Point. It is a huge hassle! But, I drew a picture of a bobtail squid and my partner drew a chromatophore (extremely detailed, I was impressed). I hope it goes ok. It's strange to have to do these things again. Academia is strange...

I have made plans to go hunting for the octopus species I am going to study on Sunday. I'm really excited! There is a guy who is going to take me to the best place to find them. Apparently they are pretty aggressive and the area they live in is a bit dangerous because of the rocky substrate. But I'm sure it will be fine. I like the adventure :)

This is a guy I see almost every day on the bus. He likes to go to the library on campus and read the newspapers and sleep. He always wears the same leather jacket (in this heat) and has long stringy hair. I tried to make him not look so creepy--but I can't help it. I think that is just my style. I am starting to see every one on the bus as a Ralph Steadman caricature (but again, that would be giving my art too much credit).