Monday, February 26, 2007

Animated Sex

I had to confiscate these from Isaac this weekend. Naruto is a cartoon on Cartoon Network that I had screened previously and found passable, albeit a tad violent. He bought some trading cards that seem to come with every new cartoon nowadays, but I didn't bother to go through each and every card that came in his deck. When I noticed the "Sexy Jitsu" card, I realized that I needed to go through them. The star of the cartoon, Naruto, is a 12-year-old boy, so who exactly is this show aimed at? (Click on the image to see it larger, if you dare.)

My friends Shompa and Shumon are gorgeous.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

a la Clint Eastwood

The Good: We had a huge snowstorm, and it was perfect timing because the snowplow has carved a trail through our long driveway, my dad shoveled a path to my car, and it'll be a beautiful drive to Madison tomorrow morning. We haven't had a nice snow like this for ages!

Also, Isaac and I had a great day in Madison on Friday and spent the night at Gina's. It was really fun to take him to my office and then to class with me. He got to learn about how I spend my days. PLUS we got tickets to see the Dalai Lama in May!

The Bad:
I got at least two wrong on my stats test (of course, the two that were worth 8 pts. each!) If I didn't make any other mistakes (impossible), it means I got a B. If it's less than a B I'm dropping the class. I'm trying to pretend that I enjoy math, but the truth is, I hate it worse than I hate mushy cereal.

The Ugly: I was exhausted yesterday from the extra work of having Isaac with me on campus and driving home in the blowing snow, and I fell asleep early last night after watching "Ray" with my parents. Then I got up this morning all ready to hit the books, but fell asleep AGAIN in the chair while trying to read about class formation and labor politics in South Korea. Now it's 4:11, and I'm blogging because I don't want to start writing my paper. My work load is very light this weekend but I still can't seem to get going! I just want to sleeeeeeeeeeeeeep. I have such a love-hate relationship with grad school!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Happy Anniversary Part II (y la dilación suprema)

My wonderful husband sent me such a thoughtful anniversary present in the mail. He did a good job this time. Masud has not always been successful in the gift-giving department, because although he is the most generous person in the universe, he tends to go to extremes. For our first anniversary, I got a chocolate rose from Kwik Trip. I think it cost $1.19. But for our seventh anniversary (I was in Bangladesh), he gave me a gorgeous 22k gold and sapphire necklace that cost way too much and that I'm too scared to wear. This year, he bought me some simple but meaningful jewelry - all different stones and designs, and a set of Nepali prayer flags that I've wanted forever. I'll try to post pictures if I can ever remember. Today I'm wearing my new onyx necklace - it's a big asymmetrical triangle - and the paper that came with it said that onyx "provides strength during times of physical or mental stress, and the ability to sustain and maintain". That's good, because I have a hard test coming up for which I should be studying right now. (According to, la dilación suprema means the supreme procrastination. I'm trying to learn Spanish by translating random phrases and trying them out on my friend Pili, who is from Argentina and pronounces the pronoun 'yo' as 'cho'.)

After I finish this test, it's easy sailing for the next few days. I've only got about 80 pages to read tonight for our seminar tomorrow, and then I've gotta pack my bags because Isaac is coming with me to school on Friday! His school is closed for parent/teacher conferences, and so he's going to see what it's like for mom on campus every day. We have to leave by 6:15 a.m. and he'll come with me to work and class. In between times we'll be taking the bus up to the Capitol building to drop off our passport applications, and then have lunch somewhere on State St. (Sadly, this will probably have to be at Subway, since that's the only thing he'll eat.) He has some coupons to use at the game store on State St. so we'll have to make a stop there, as well. Gina is going to hang out with him while I go to my Development Studies seminar, and then we're going to party at Der Rathskeller in the Union. We're spending the night at Gina's. On Saturday, we're going to get the oil changed, then maybe go shopping a little, and then wait in line at Camp Randall for tickets to see the Dalai Lama. He'll be visiting Madison on May 4th, and I'm so excited.
I'm hoping that we'll be able to drive home on Saturday even though we're expecting a huge snowstorm. Maybe we'll just have to spend the weekend in Mad-town.

Sigh, I can't think of anything more to tell you about, so I suppose I should try to tackle baseline constraints in tabular logit models before I have to take my test. Ouch, my synapses are hurting.

P.S. - Bangla-speaking friends: How do you say "procrastination" in Bangla? I was thinking "fakibaj"? So supreme procrastination would be "moha fakibaj"?

Monday, February 19, 2007

Happy Anniversary Part I

My 10th Wedding Anniversary is tomorrow, but look what the Fed Ex guy brought to my door today! It was a box full of my favorite misti (jilapi) and some other kind of sweet which I don't know the name for but which is also very good. My brother-in-law Mithu sent it all the way from San Diego. Mmmmmm.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

The case for organization

(I know the picture is too damn small but I'm too lazy to go back and change it so just deal with it!)
Here's the story behind the pile on my desk. Last Wednesday night, I frantically cleaned my "office area" because I could not locate a recommendation letter that I got from someone in Bangladesh, which I needed to submit with a fellowship application the following day. I knew that I had carefully filed it, but where, I had no idea. I ended up going through the scary "miscellaneous" pile. I made three piles on my bed: discard, class stuff, and bills. I found the stupid letter, and in the process cleaned up my shit, or so I thought.

Did I mention that I got a speeding ticket last month?

Well, I today I decided to pay the stupid ticket, only now I can't find the damn thing. I've torn everything apart and put it away, and still no ticket. The picture above is my last resort...I have to go through the contents of my backpack. You can't tell from the photo, but something stinks. God help us all.

(What does one do if they can't find the stupid ticket?)

And, just to add to my fun weekend, Isaac is really sick. Yesterday he had a 105 fever and today he threw up AND has a gross cough/sore throat/headache thing going on. What's even better, he shared the joy with me. I've got a splitting headache and a fever of 102. It makes reading about international labor movements even more enjoyable.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

blah blah blah

(Above: This is my kindergarten teacher!!)

Pictures, because I'm too lazy to post.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Did you know?

Friday, February 09, 2007

This is why I love it here.

Here is a picture of my friend Maria del Pilar Casal "Pili" and me in our Development Studies Seminar. We had to read an article called "The Antagonistic Relevance of Development Studies". Once I got through the horrible difficulties with vocabulary, I learned a lot! How many of you know what "teleology" is?

Pili is from Argentina, and she promised that she'll show me around if we're ever there together. I hear they have good beef. Too bad I don't eat dead animals.

Awww, it's student Katie.

How it goes down in my house.

Me: So who do you think has a better chance of winning the nomination: Hillary or Barak?
Dad: Definitely Barak.
Me: Why do you think so?
Dad: Because Hillary is a bitch.
Me: !!!
Dad: It's a commonly known fact!
Me: First of all, what evidence do you have that she's a bitch and that it's a commonly known fact?
Dad: (flummoxed) I just know!
Me: And second of all, why does that matter?
Dad: (incoherent mumbling)
Me: GOD!!!
Isaac: What are you yelling about now, mom?
Me: Your grandfather is a misogynist!!
Isaac: You mean he gives bad massages?

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Also because it's Thursday...

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The Inland North

You may think you speak "Standard English straight out of the dictionary" but when you step away from the Great Lakes you get asked annoying questions like "Are you from Wisconsin?" or "Are you from Chicago?" Chances are you call carbonated drinks "pop."

The Midland
The Northeast
North Central
The South
The West
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

(I copied Bitch Ph.D.)

Because I love Thursdays, here's a picture that Isaac drew.

I'm the red person. I wonder why he gave me yellow hair.

Note: Maddie's Nana wondered if the general lean to the right is prophetic of Isaac's future political ideology. I guess, being an open minded liberal, I could somehow succeed in accepting my son even if he turns out to be a Republican. But I think it must just be that his paper was crooked.

This is obviously a picture of my parents' house because it's got two gables and the all-important satellite dish on top. The dish is critical because it supplies a constant stream of Cartoon Network into our living room.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

I feel like Sally Field!

Thanks for all the wonderful comments! I had a really crappy day yesterday and it was awesome to have some cyber-lovin' to come home to.

I've decided that I can never leave my blog, because I'm addicted. I have kept a journal since I was seven (and incidentally they got me in trouble more than once, but I never gave up!) My blog has replaced my journal to some degree, although I reserve the really juicy stuff for the secret pages.

Anyway, yesterday was horrible. I had a brush with some of the realities of international development, and kinda cried all day. Plus, Tuesdays are jam packed with work/class/class/class and I was feeling overwhelmed and not sure what the point of this degree is anyway, because this world is a horrible, mean place full of injustice.

But not to worry, I feel much better after eating two jolly ranchers and having a hilarious laughing jag with Isaac last night. The kid is funny. Is there anything funnier than a six-year-old doing potty humor? I think not.

And, did I mention this? Regina Spektor is my new favorite. Love it.

Monday, February 05, 2007

What's the Point?

I had a great reason for starting this blog back in 2004 - to keep my friends and family up to date on what I was doing in Bangladesh. I became addicted to blogging, and continued to post even after I came home. I've made lots of new friends and maybe connected with some long-lost buddies because of this blog.

But I often wonder, what is the point? Do I have a theme? I seem to complain a lot about different things. Sometimes I try to write little op-eds about current affairs and important issues.

Note: Today I was going to post about the discourse regarding Barak Obama running for president. (A NYT article for which I can't find the link talks about how many African Americans don't think he's "black enough", and some political leader actually said that he's the first "clean" African American to run, and some people don't think he's American because his father was from Kenya!!!) I wanted to talk about how the whole point is that we should elect a leader for their abilities to LEAD, not because of what they look like. That's what it means to BREAK DOWN BARRIERS!! But I decided to spare you.

Anyway, there are plenty of other bloggers who have taken up this subject, and dealt with it much more eloquently than I ever could, so go read their blogs.

So then I wonder, should I make my blog into one of those "current links" blogs (like Rezwan's excellent blog about Bangladesh), but nah, that's been done too.

got a Critter-themed blog. Gina's got the whole "domestic nemesis" angle. Tanya's blog is just hilarious and witty all the time. Then there are the legends: Twisty and Bitch - they don't even need a theme, that's how good they are. So what am I left with? I'm too ADD to stick to one thing!

I worry that nobody really cares what I had for lunch yesterday, or what I did last weekend, or how cute my kid is. Note: He's the cutest first grader in the WORLD. Things would be much more interesting here if I could tell all my secrets - if only I could be sure that my professors/friends/family/boss/etc. wouldn't read on certain days... I've considered making an anonymous blog, but I'm just too lazy to start over. Plus, I kinda like it when my friends visit my blog and make comments. I crave attention.

And another thing: I've had three people make repeated comments to me about how this seems like a big waste of my precious time. Is it that these people don't understand what a blog is? Do they think that I spend hours formulating each post? Or is it really a waste of time?

So what's an aimless blogger to do? Suggestions?

Sunday, February 04, 2007


I've had the flu all weekend, and check out the weather forecast for tomorrow....

I'm staying home.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Those Freakin' Ribbons.

I've already posted about how I despise those stupid "Support Our Troops" magnetic ribbons that are everywhere nowadays. Here's an awesome performance from some people who also despise. (Warning: There are dirty words, violence, and sexual acts depicted in this clip. Enjoy!)

Thursday, February 01, 2007

I Heart Thursday.

My favorite day of the week has always been Thursday. It's close enough to Friday to make me feel like I can make it one more week, and for some reason it's just a relaxing day for me. My high school biology teacher always wore a strange green outfit on Thursdays (green poly pants with a lighter green poly shirt), and we would joke that because green M&M's are an aphrodisiac, he must wear green on Thursdays on purpose because he wanted to get laid, and the phrase "green Thursday" became an allusion to randiness.

Anyway, today is a nice day. I drove to Madison yesterday and spent the night at Gina's because I had a late meeting. We made an excellent dinner - I cooked the dal, Gina made some green bean curry, and Rajas made the rice. To top it off, Rajas got some jilapi (recall my favorite sweet from Bangladesh) and it was so delicious that I almost died. Food and friends, what could be better?

This morning I had to walk to school in the sub-zero temps, though. I cannot stand the feeling of my face freezing off while my back is sweating. It's horrible and wrong. This weekend is being dubbed "the Deep Freeze", with expected highs of 2 degrees. Augh.

But I only have one class today, and this afternoon I get to meet with some like-minded people for fair-trade coffee and conversation about Asia, NGO's, education and all sorts of awesome things. I just love this town!