La Vie En Rose for 2004 November

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Transition: I'm wearing my American Traveller International Apology Shirt today, for hopefully the last time, except for the polls tomorrow.

[Comments] (4) Lookie Lookie: My progress meter went up!

[Comments] (26) : Must stop refreshing CNN election results. Must work on word count for today.

Oh, well. I had a pretty ok first day at work and last night Wes Clark's speech was awesome! I did disagree with him on a few things, such as the stupid electoral college, but he was very inspriring, and afterwards I got to shake his hand!

I saw Mr Cowles, my AP US History teacher, at the polls this morning. He patted me on the shoulder as he left and said "Vote right." "Oh I will," I reassured him. Mr Cowles is one of the Great Liberal Thinkers of BHS which make me so glad I went there, and when I did.

[Comments] (19) I had some dreams, they were clouds in my coffee: I've been so upset since subjected to Fox news during work yesterday morning, I was too depressed to work on my story much so my word count is shaping up pathetically while everyone else doing nanowrimo seems to have 8,000 words already. Cheerful. I don't think I need to say I was upset my election results, but life goes on (or in some cases, not...). The eternal optimist in me made a list of "on the bright side" and here is some of what I came up with:

1. I'll get more mileage from my "american traveller apology shirt."

2. He can't run again!

3. Maybe Hillary will run in 2008.

I won't post the rest because I couldn't think of any more real ones and they got pretty sarcastic.

To top things off, my new job is Not That Fun. Maybe it's just because I'm in training and that's always boring. But I am seriously wondering why I'm going to put on a skirt and shoes and drive over there to stand on my feet for 4 hours when I could stay here in my PJs and keep working on my summary and make more than twice as much.

[Comments] (3) Hem Hem: Thanks to Fiona, another proud owner of the American apology shirt, for sending this link to an article about a speech Frank McCourt gave supporting Kerry: Said McCourt: "It confuses me. Thou shalt not kill a fetus, but they don't have anything to say about war. Thou shalt not kill a young man of 24. They don't say anything about that or thou shalt not kill thousands of Iraqis. That's all right."

A lot of people talked about moving to Canada if Bush were re-elected, and apparently some of them weren't joking. It's actually had the opposite effect on me, and I am now considering more strongly than ever staying in the US for grad school--at least my MA--so I am in a prime position to do all I can during the next election. Also on BBC is a collection of emails from non-Americans, and they seem to be as divided as we are. Reading over them, I see a lot of the same arguments. but considering the global media, I guess that's not really a surprise.

Now. It just so happens that I now have two jobs (my bookstore job is becoming more enjoyable, thanks for asking) and I am also attempting to write a novel in the month of November, in addition to juggling various activities and peoples who demand my attention. I have just spent over an hour writing out responses to the comments to the entry before last. The previous entry I have not even attempted yet (though I would suggest to Kristen that she watch Outfoxed). I realize that the beginning of this entry is political in nature and, if the last two posts are anything to judge by, will prompt a spew of comments that I will feel the need to respond to.

I would like to take this time to thank Sumana, Stacy, Mom, and "President Bush" who, since I generally agree with them, have saved the effort of saying certain things, and also brought up good points that have never occurred to me.

But, as much as I enjoy(ish) having my weblog function as my family & associates political forum, it is beginning to be a strain on my precious time resources. So could you please, please just do me a teensy favor: if you have something political to say, even if it's in response to something I say (as I know I won't be able to shut up) please just post it on your own weblog (if you don't have one, see Leonard). Agreeing with me is fine :o), or expanding on what I say, but if you want to start an arguement discussion, please do it elsewhere. At least for November. And I promise to come along and join the fray in a timely manner. Besides, there's no reason why I should get all the attention! And otherwise I'll spent all of my time at crummy, and all of you people who are clamouring to read my book will never get the chance. Thanks.

[Comments] (1) More on Healthcare: I know, I just can't stop. I went in to mom's room to try to get Tonks to cuddle with me, and when I picked up the Newsweek it opened to this article on healthcare by Jane Bryant Quinn. She argues much more convincingly and informatively than I could, discussing the economics of it, stats, misconceptions about the Canadian system, scare-tactics used by Big Heath and their puppets (*coughGdub*), and most importantly, why the current system is so unfair.

Crap.: As you can see via the meter to the left, I have a total of 7252 words so far. Today, if I were on track, I should have 11669. I totally suck.

But I do have all day to write, and also finish this summary for a book on the History of the Scottish Women's Hopsitals. I'm kind of close-ish to the end...

But on the other hand...: I'm still in December 1914, so I have plenty left to write about.

[Comments] (1) But on the other other hand: I've just written a journey from Dover to Calais, and through France to the Mediterranean, but looking back over my notes, it seems that they left from Soutampton and sailed the whole way. Which really makes more sense.... gah. *headesk*

[Comments] (2) And while I'm making dozens of short posts: I'd just like to point out that no one answered my question of a while ago about whether there was a netflix-type deal for books on CD. I think I exhausted the Kern County Library supply with Angela's Ashes. The lack of response makes me think such a thing does not exist, but I though I would ask again just in case, before giving up.

Wish List: I found audiobooks.com, which will let me have two books a month for $22, a pretty good deal, and should be enough if I get long books. But it means I'd either have to burn the CDs myself or find a way to attach my iPod to my car stereo. Anyway, I just burned a bootlegged copy of Sorcerer's Stone and bought Order of the Phoenix on Amazon Marketplace for $20 (less than $1 per CD!) and there was a CD demo on King Alfred in the advance copies pile at work, so that should keep me busy until Christmas.

I'll post more things I'd like for Christmas as I think of them. Those of you who think you might be getting a present from me, feel free hint about what books are on your wishlist.

Oh!: You know what else I'd really like for Christmas? Norton systemworks/ antivirus for my wutle computle. :)

Also: A USB light for my computer.

[Comments] (4) My life as a research assistant: A while ago while using the wonderful research tool of Google, my colleague and I stumbled across a “new” book mentioning the work of K Hodges, one of our subjects. Since her diary is unpublished, this is rather usual and of course we wanted to have a look at this book. UCLA library didn’t have it, so they next step is ILL and photocopying. But a good rule of thumb is, if it was published even slightly recently, even if it’s OUP, there’s a chance one can find it used online for $20 or $30—then it’s better to just buy it instead of photocopying, binding, and spending the payroll time doing it (photocopying a book always takes at least an hour, and it is such a pain). So we bought this book and it arrived and it’s sitting on the desk and I’m thinking, “Gee that book looks familiar”—because the library may not own it but we do; I’ve seen it lurking around the Carrel. Opps. Fortunately, the total cost of this book was about $6, including shipping.

Also: will I ever learn how to spell soildersoldier?

[Comments] (7) Meh: I suck. Need encouragement. Please respond.

[Comments] (6) Some thoughts on Veteran's Day: Happy Veteran's Day, everyone--or, as some people call it, Remembrance Day.

In England during the month of November they sell paper poppies to benefit veterans, and everyone everywhere is wearing one. Tony Blair appeared nightly on the news with a fresh crisp poppy on his label. Mine was pinned to my jacket and got a little crumpled because unlike Tony Blair I had the same one all through November; I still have it, in my scrapbook, along with the poem my history professor explained was the background of the poppies: In Flanders Field.

Armistice day is important because it's the day the fighting stopped. But it's not the day the war was over. To many, delirious with illness, they didn't even realize it. Isabel Hutton said, "On November 11, 1918, we heard it was Armistice Day, but nobody seemed happy about it, and we hardly seemed to realize what it meant" (With a Women's Unit, p 164). To others, going home with broken bodies or to broken homes, their troubles were far from over. And even though there's hardly any veterans from World War I left, to some, the war is still not over.

nemo me impune lacessit: Hurrah! I have finished* a monumental work of great importance, my summary of the History of the Scottish Women's Hospitals, edited by Mrs Shaw McLaren, 1919. The entire thing, I imagine, once I put it all together, will be over 40 pages. Whee! And it only took five and a half million hours!

The last chapter is on the Girton and Newnham Unit, which is what--in the form of Isabel Hutton--introduced me to the SWH almost a year ago, so in a way it's like coming full circle (although I'm sure I'll be round a few more times before I'm done. One thing that struck me, near the end, was Dr McIroy retelling the story of what an officer had told her about something he'd seen on the advance: a retreating army, caught on a pass and shelled, leaving just as mass of death. "One little foal was alive and standing by its dead mother; a little dog was also whining round a dead pony it had evidently lived with. Personally I always feel worse about those poor beasts, dragged unknowingly into the war and unable to get away." I've always felt the worst for the animals, too.

I was going to leave my "Defend America, Defeat Bush" sticker on, but now that someone has scribbled "Not!" after it (which is very rude) I'll have to take it off, and I have nothing to replace it with until my "Republicans for Voldemort" stickers come.

And, hahahahaha, we've just realised that the deadline for proposals for a conference is on... Monday. It's only a half page--page abstract, which I'm sure I can manage, but I'd like to think that at some point along my academic career I'll be prepared ahead of time for these things and not doing them at the last minute.

* Minus the chapters on the Royaumont and Romanian Units, which belong to Stacy.

[Comments] (1) Quick Question(s): Does anyone know what the difference between typhoid and typhus is? And also, what would happen if someone got hit with some bits of scrapnel but it wasn't removed right away?

[Comments] (2) Today is the 15th: and I don't think I need to tell you that I'm not halfway done with my novel...

Official Wish-List:

1. UCLA sweatshirt
2. The Corrs Live in Dublin CD
3. USB light (would probably fit in stocking)
4. Norton Systemworks (for mac)
5. Griffin iTrip for iPod mini
6. Gift membership to audio-to-go.

Also for my stocking: a small calculator. I bought one but it appears to have disappeared.

[Comments] (1) Word count woes: My completed summary for the History of the Scottish Women's Hospitals is 37 pages long--over 20,000 words! If only I could add that to my word count....

Freudian Sliposity: My heroine, on her ability to do operations herself: "Dr Soltau had long since stopped standing over my shoulder while I typed.” And later: “I wanted to hurry and get through the medicine distribution so I could go to my own ward on type.”

*headdesk*

[Comments] (3) : Tonight I did sound at major league improv for the third time ever. This consists of interducing everybody and keeeping score (oh dear, maths) and announcing the score to everybody plus the ending. I have someone to help me with the music though, otherwise I should be overwhelmed as I am all so new at it. But I think I am doing a good job. Chuck, who is always referree, and Ilike to get into little wars which amuses the audience. Anyway, the more used to it I get the more fun it becomes.

Also, can anyone explain the phenominan (which anyone who has ever worked in a store will completely agree is so true) that while fifteen minutes will go by without a single customer needing help leaving you free to alphabatise to you hearts desire, all of a sudden ten people will want to check out all at once, using gift certificates and book clubs, which have to be tracked down in the master log and crossed off, and getting new book clubs that have to be recorded, or gift certificates which is just a pain, and writing checks, and joining the book club which means I have to add them right there, and wanting the complementary gift wrap and its enough to drive a person crazy! And somehow I always end up at the cash register with no credit card reader so I have to type it in by hand! But still, it's better than being non-busy and bored. And it's challenging, so I enjoy it.

Speaking of challenging, yes I am well aware that my word count hasn't moved in a while. I have written more so it's not quite as dismal as it seems.... we're all just waiting for me to make my big come-back. I hope no one was expecting me to actually pay attention to them over spring break.

PS: www.mugglenet.com reports a rumour of a June 2005 6th HP book release. Wouldn't that be exciting!!

[Comments] (1) A novel question: Becca is going to post her novel online eventually. I might do the same, or select bits of it, but I don't know where I would do it as I don't want to overload La Vie En Rose with it and also I am scared people might steal my brilliant ideas. Is there anything like photobucket where you can keep a password and only hand it out to people you want to see your pictures for..text?

[Comments] (3) From The Tao of Pooh:
"Owl, you're just confusing things," I said. "This is the day after Tuesday and it's not Thirds--I mean, Thursday."
"Then what is it?" asked Owl.
"It's Today!" squeaked Piglet.
"My favorite day," said Pooh.

: Another thing I would like for my stocking is some nice panyhose for work, like the kind you buy at Victoria's Secret or a department store, and not Vons.

I've decided to stop typing my novel as I go along, and I think this will be removing a major hinderance. I've figured out that each composition book page I write is about 200 words, so all I have to do is write about 200 more pages and I'll be all set! Then when it gets to be december I can go back and type and edit as I go, instead of the frantic typing I do now where I don't even spell-check. I know I could say myself a lot of trouble by just writing it one the computer, but for some reason it just comes out better on paper.

Mom made some homeade macoroni and cheese. Yum.

[Comments] (1) New Rule: I can have cheetos whenever I like, as long as I write 4000 words a day.

[Comments] (2) In my weekly inpiration email from Chris Baty: Lastly, in the course of our negotiations, we've spoken extensively with your family, friends, and significant others. All of whom would like to pass on the fact that they have come away from these past three weeks deeply inspired by the can-do example you've been setting.

They would also like me to remind you that they will mock you mercilessly should you fall short of your 50,000-word goal this week. Your mother is especially looking forward to reminding you of your novel-writing shortcoming for the rest of your life.

*pant pant* After extensive counting I've figured out that I actually average above 250 words per compostiton book page, which is very good news. So I can do one page/ 15 minutes, and four pages or one hour equals one thousand words. This is a lot of math, but as long as I have four hours of writing every day left in November I should be fine. Considering I've given up pretty much all extra activities including IMing and research (which isn't really extra but it's only one week) I should be able to manage that. I'll just tell y'all (sorry, listening to Little Altars everywhere must have gotten to me) not to bother me too much this holiday. I figure have three other people in the car excepts me from driving on the way to SF :D so I'll just dope myself up on drammamine and write the entire way there.

I took my car in today. $560 to replace the radiator & other variousness. Got paid today. $194. Ho-ho-ho.

Woe is me: I fell for no reason and all, and hurt my foot.

The optimist in me takes this as a wonderful excuse for not doing anything but staying in bed and writing; but the thing is I was planning on doing so anyway, except for the five and a half hours a day where I have to go to work and stand on my feet. :-{

[Comments] (1) : Well, my foot is getting better but now I am le sickie. I had to be sent home from work after half an hour. Again, a good excuse to stay in bed and write all day when I'm not sleeping or throwing up, but if only I didn't feel so meh I'd be doing a better job of it. Hopefully I'll be feeling better tomorrow. !0,000 more words to go! *writes*

[Comments] (2) Dear God:
Please do not let me have the stomach flu.
Sincerly, Rachel

A Sad Tale of Juice: I want to drink the juice, but I'm afraid if I drink more than the sip I have already had, the juice will come back up. Wah.

[Comments] (6) I wrote 50,000 words in 30 days and all I got were these lousy 50,000 words: There. I did it.

Of course, my novel is nowhere near to being done, and if possible it's an even bigger mess than when I first started. Which could explain my lack of elation. That and the illness.

La Vie En Rose for 2004 November

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