Category Archives: nerds

ng + afp = less than three

So when I was a teenager I got into Tori Amos.  We’ll talk about why or why not that is later this week.  As a result of being into Tori Amos, in college-ish I became familiar with Neil Gaiman.  After college I started actually reading his stuff (not just the liner notes for Strange Little Girls).  One year for Christmas my (not-yet-then) husband purchased me the short story collection Fragile Things, with the aforementioned SLG inserts as a part of them.  (As for his liner notes, many of them are better than some but not all of the songs on that album; sorry you guys, but Tori’s cover of “Heart of Gold” is among the worst of all time.  “Reigning Blood”, however, is a thing to behold.)

“October in the Chair” is one of my favorite bedtime stories.

Anyway.  Almost two years ago I found Neil on twitter.  And thus found Amanda Palmer, and was like “WTF why haven’t I been listening to her for years!?”  (I know why – I was too preoccupied with twee & Sonic Youth throughout college.)

I’ve been rabidly following their relationship like it’s a tabloid, proving again that people writing their own shit on twitter is so much better than 90% of mainstream news publications.  And just yesterday, Palmer posted their epic, epic wedding blog, marking their one year anniversary.

EPIC.  http://blog.amandapalmer.net/post/15120706154/the-wedding-blog

Two things that she writes apply to well, everyone and everything.

nowadays, at some level, everybody loves a bride.
and everybody loves a bride, i think, because a bride symbolizes hope.

in a world filled with NO NO NO NO NO and fear and terror and doubt, a bride fills up the space in the minds eye as a giant white tulle YES, and you don’t need to know the romantic backstory. somehow, through some miraculous chain of events, this woman has decided to throw herself into a life commitment. and it means something different now than it did 100, even 50, years ago. because nowadays she has a choice.

SIGH.  I walked down the street in my white tulle poof on my wedding day and felt exactly exactly exactly that way.

Also, this is the kind of house I want to have one day:

the third inspiration was to call upon neil’s other writer friends, michael chabon and ayelet waldman, whose home we’d already been welcomed into the year before.
michael and ayelet have a kind of a dream-home, filled with four astoundingly awesome children, random instruments, rugs, books and all manner of homey-goodness. we asked if they would have us and armistead and lance and company over to dinner and by the way get married right before we eat and by the way would rosie possibly mind being our flower girl. they said yes, and rosie, age six, began aggressively plotting her outfit. things were officially underway.

(Yeah, we plan on one day having children, and I totally want to have a cadre of little girls who aggressively plan outfits.)

Anyway, the whole piece is beautifully wrought.  Insightful and just wonderful.  This is why people still get married.

Also, a video of AFP playing with the Boston Pops, as she mentions earlier in the post.

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Filed under advice, books, love, nerds, wedding

rite of passage

In this day and age, you either had one of these or probably knew someone who had it.

For me, it was a boy from Minnesota. We met over an AOL message board for Smashing Pumpkins fans. We talked every day for a good six months . I wore a silver shirt when I met him at the Orlando International Airport. The next day, without cell phones and with me on a Lynx bus, signals were crossed and it was slightly disastrous. The day after, my best friend aided and abetted some double crossing of my mother. During the whole exchange with me and the boy – his summer right before college and for me, the summer before 11th grade – there was lots of symbolism, drama, and imagined grandeur. I mean, come on. We were teenage Smashing Pumpkins fans. OF COURSE it was hyper-dramatic. (Have you ever listened to Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness in its entirety? Or even said the title aloud?)

He probably figured out pretty immediately that we couldn’t sustain a relationship after walking around a few days in the broiling Florida heat – in August, no less. It took a few months for the official break to happen. And it was, indeed, a moment in time, captured by jpgs and early blogs. (Diaryland, anyone?)

But rather than write a Camera Obscura song about it, or even a NYT op-ed, I moved on. Moved forward. We didn’t talk much afterwards. He immed me the night I’d found out my father had died.  Again.  Symbolism.  A good 10 years on, me and that same aforementioned boy are facebook friends, and apparently he went to the same high school (in some of the same time frame) as Gina’s boyfriend. (Gina being my partner on The Five Percent Rule.)

It’s a small, weird, world, and the rate at which we’ve become connected since those days on AOL chat, when your modem could fail eight times before connecting you (especially if you were desperate to talk to someone), is amazing.

Downloadable. Unsustainable, too.

(My mental soundtrack to reading/writing this: “Swans” Camera Obscure (of course); “Minneapolis” That Dog.)

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A Pro’s guide to online dating

Yeah, I said it. I’m a pro. Well, I met some guy on OKCupid and am marrying him in less than four months. (Shit!)

Jezebel did a guide to online dating, and creating your perfect profile. Which is interesting, and it’s also interesting to read comments from people (as I am a habitual comment reader, on nearly everything I visit on the web with the exception of cracked.com) who are at the start of it all.

You get this thrill of attention when you first turn to online dating. Like many places in life, you get plenty of attention for being a n00b. This never comforted me, actually, until I turned to the world of online dating. I was never very accomplished in my first year of anything: high school, college, professional life. Being an older sibling had something to do with it, as I had grown up having to wait for things when my 5 years junior brother expected to receive everything without working for it. I always tried to understand my role, and play it cool my first year. Take over my second or third.

But not with online dating. I was the hot new girl on the block. When I first became active on OKCupid in 2008, it was like a window had been opened to a world that was made just for me. A somewhat attractive, nerdy girl who loved music and had a healthy appreciation for pretentious books and movies, and who wasn’t reluctant or difficult to read? Psh. I felt like I was a thousand nerdboys dream come true, and I relished in it.  (Read: I also really needed it at the time.)

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eat it, Bachmann!

I was actually looking for reliable information on divorce rates for the decades in which I grew up (I turned 18 in 2000, which should give you a pretty good indicator of my youth-ness).

And I found this, which referenced Nate Silver, on whom I have had a huge crush for years. HIS BIG SEXY BRAIN!

Derp derp, same-sex marriages might actually decrease the divorce rate?!

Well, it’s kind of a shot.  There’s a chance it’s right.  Except that Silver is never.  Wrong.

Big.  Sexy.

Brain.  You got it!

(Addendum: T-storm might not be any use for statistical modeling, but he’s got a pretty big, sexy brain himself!)

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Filed under civil rights, nerds, politics

don’t you hate it when?

You discover a blog, or finally get onto the bandwagon, only to join them at the point where the author only posts about the book tour they’re currently on?

Looking at you, Bakerella, Regretsy, Stuff White People Like; even I Can Has Cheezburger was guilty of such at some point.  Sadly, I worry that A Practical Wedding (which is effing fantastic, if you didn’t know) might turn in that direction shortly.

Thanks to Offbeat Bride for not doing that, or if Ariel ever did, then she did it long before I found said blog.

Seeing as blog-writing is seemingly the new shortcut to getting published these days, I promise that if anyone ever wants to get me a book deal, I won’t blog incessantly about it.

I don’t plan on ever writing a book, at least not this way.  I’ve just been a compulsive online journaler since 2000.  Whatevs.

Tangentially related to such, I was really annoyed that the NY Times seemed to absorb Five Thirty Eight, aka best political blog ever.  (Next to Politifact.)

And I am encouraged that one of my other favorite blogs, East Side Bride, will likely never turn in that direction, even though she also writes for 100 Layer Cake.

(And also: STOP THE FREAKING PRESSES.  I just found this photo on the ESB blog and I CAN’T REMEMBER MY PINTEREST PASSWORD!!)

(I also need to stop reading so many damn blogs and finish reading The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao this summer, because it’s a freaking fantastic book.  But I read a lot and then don’t forever.  That’s the way I do most things; i.e. you haven’t seen me post here in two three weeks.)

(One more note about blog-inspired books: not that I mind these bloggers writing books.  I will probably have bought about 6 copies of Cake Pops by the time we’re all said & done.)

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Go Mavs

I live in South Florida.  I do not want the Miami Heat to win the national title.  I am irritated that they’ve made it this far.  Why? For a number of reasons.  Well one short one and a really long one, both relating to my childhood.

1) Living in Florida as a young kid in the late 80s, when we got the first two Florida teams as NBA expansion teams, I lived in Central Florida.  Thus, the Orlando Magic were a somewhat central theme to my childhood and adolescence.  I really enjoyed watching them play the Lakers in the NBA Finals two years ago, despite the outcome.  I learned that watching high stakes sports  I was emotionally invested in was a huge motivational force to clean my apartment.  More than ever.  I was very sad to see the Magic fall so early this post-season.

2) Then there’s that whole Lebron deal.  That guy sucks.  Back to two years ago, I delighted in the fact that Dwight Howard had busted up the Kobe/Lebron battle that was supposed to be the NBA Finals that year.  I hated Lebron then.  I still hate him now.

The whole stacking the deck down here in Miami smacks of playground politics.  I feel like I’m back in elementary school…

(insert crazy harp runs and wavy visuals that invariably indicate we’re going back in time)

ALSO THERE’S A POTENTIALLY NSFW PHOTO AFTER THE CUT, SO CLICK WITH CARE.

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