Thursday - March 12, 2015

What is that smell?

Got out to my car this morning and opened the back so I could load my backpack and was promptly affronted by a rather sickly-sweet smell. I couldn't imagine what could be in the car and started to talk myself into the idea that I was imagining the smell. But, no. It was there. I did a quick scan of the trunk area and there was nothing. I then opened the rear passenger door and could see a bit of reflection off a plastic bag on the floorboard under the sun shade that rides in the back seat. I crouched down toward it and realized that it was, in fact, the offending culprit. I could not remember eating out and stowing any left-overs in the car, though.

Then, realization dawned. Almost two weeks ago I bought some broccoli to put in my soup. When I unpacked my groceries, though, there had been no broccoli so I decided I'd either forgotten to get the broccoli or it had never made it into my bag at the checkout counter. I did not go check the car. And, it's been sitting in the car for at least 10 days without me noticing it. Which means it's been much colder of late in Austin than we're used to. No way a head of broccoli would normally last more than a day or two without going stinky this time of year.

So, I gingerly removed the bag from the floorboard, dropped it into another bag, and put the whole thing in the freezer where it can stop stinking and wait for garbage pick-up day. Which will be Saturday. Ick. I also liberally sprayed some Fabreeze on the floorboard of my car and on the sun shield.

And, the smell wasn't too bad on the way to work. I suspect it'll be all gone by this evening. I did leave the window cracked a bit.

I hope I've learned to check the car for missing veggies when I get home and find veggies missing from the grocery bag. I suppose that only time will tell.

Posted by Joanna | Permalink

Wednesday - March 11, 2015

Is it cold or not?

Temperature perception is an odd thing.

Last night, at the end of the game, it was 59 °F. Or so the scoreboard was reporting to us. It felt a lot colder than that to me. I was wearing a fleece cap and a warm down jacket. How could it seem so much colder? We'd been sitting out in the humidity for a couple of hours watching the game so it had just kind of seeped into our bones. I guess.

I had to take a computer to another building a while ago. Looking at the weather bug on my computer, I see that it is, once again, 59 °F outside. I did not have a jacket or cap with me. I am wearing a cotton sweater today but that's it. And, I did not feel at all cold.

Temperature perception is an odd thing.

Posted by Joanna | Permalink

Monday - December 1, 2014

Campus Watch #71

From today's report:

Darrell K. Royal Texas Memorial Stadium, 2200 Robert Dedman
Theft: A non-UT subject attempted to enter the stadium with a guitar case containing a Luna Gypsy guitar. A bag check representative told the subject he could not bring the guitar into the stadium and offered to keep the guitar during the game. The bag check representative provided the owner with a number he could call at the end of the game to claim his guitar. After the game, the owner could not get anyone to answer his phone calls but did receive a text stating, "Sorry bro, I don't know where your guitar is." Loss value: $350.00. Occurred on 11/27/14 between 8:00 PM and 10:15 PM.

So very, very sad.

Posted by Joanna | Permalink

Tuesday - September 23, 2014

Campus Watch #70

From today's report:

Chemical and Petroleum Engineeirng Building, 200 East Dean Keeton
Assault - A disturbance was reported inside a 2nd floor classroom. Officers located the subjects involved and learned a private company was presenting an informational session about their company for students. One UT student arrived, gathered a complimentary sandwich that was provided for by the company and sat through approximately 30 minutes of the presentation before leaving the classroom. One of the company representatives met the student in the hallway to debate the ethics of taking a sandwich and not staying for the entire presentation. The student then discarded the sandwich in the trash. The company representative retrieved the sandwich and launched it at the student's back. The student and another UT student later approached the company representative to file a complaint. The other UT student was reported to have lightly pushed the company representative prior to all parties separating. None of the involved parties wished to file charges. Reported on 09/22/14 at 7:50 PM.

My peeps! (This happened in my building.) Once again, proof that there's no such thing as a free lunch. The cost of that free sandwich, I'm sorry to break it to you, is sitting through a boring presentation.

Posted by Joanna | Permalink

Saturday - June 7, 2014

BettySoo's new CD - When We're Gone

I went to the release party for BettySoo's new CD (When We're Gone) last night. It was a great success. I'm sitting down tonight to listen all the way through the CD for the first time. I started to "live-tweet" this but decided there just weren't enough characters. And, it'd just get lost in the vacuum that is Twitter. So, a new post here. A real post. I haven't done anything "real" here in a very long time.

Anyway, to the task at hand. Track-by-track...

  1. Listen - Starts off with some beautiful cello work by Brian Standefer. I've seen him play with BettySoo and Jenny Reynolds several times over the last few months; he's an awfully talented fella. Love the vocals. I like the haunting whispering going on. Who's singing background? BettySoo. Huh. She had Charlie Faye, Noelle Hampton, and Jaimee Harris doing this work at the show last night. And, they were great. Looking through the liner notes, I see she's doing the background vocals on pretty much the whole CD. Interesting. Love it. Powerful lyrics. Love the abrupt ending.
  2. 100 Different Ways of Being Alone - More lovely background vocals by BettySoo. Heartbreaking lyrics. More cello. I love the sound of a cello. The up-tempo rhythm and cheerul ooh-ooh-oohs belie what's really going on in this song. "Called everyone you know but nobody's home." The lyrics of this song will kill you.
  3. Last Night - Beautiful vocals. Pedal steel by Lloyd Maines? Gorgeous.
  4. Summertime - Sounds beautiful. I have no idea what's going on in the lyrics, though. "Crumpled on the floor a crimson mess"? That sounds very ominous. Is it the dress or the girl that's crumpled? No idea. The slow 60's beach guitar licks are cool.
  5. The Things She Left Town With - Wow. Another heartbreaker. I'm starting to wonder if I can make it through this CD in one sitting. Pretty, pretty guitar by Will Sexton is a perfect compliment to the downward-spiraling lyrics.
  6. Josephine - Is there a second "she" in his life or is "she" really him? More ambiguous and haunting lyrics. More lovely cello.
  7. Hold Tight - A crumbling relationship; the narrator needs to get far, far away. Rather than hold tight. It all sounds quite beautiful, though.
  8. Love is Real - This one's starting to try and bring us out of the chasm the previous few songs have thrown us down. Maybe. Can you hear the heart beat?
  9. When We're Gone - The title doesn't give me much hope. More beautiful vocals, though. And, in the end, I think it just might be a little bit hopeful. I love me some accordion. Very much.
  10. Nothing Heals a Broken Heart - No hope in the title of this one. Oh, no. At the first lyric, I remember hearing this one for the first time a few months ago at a house concert. It brought me to tears that afternoon. It's gonna do the same thing tonight. So much sadness. Such a beautiful song, though. More gorgeous cello.
  11. Wheels - Oh. Nice. Hopefulness. At last. Sort of. I think. Heh. "Wave yesterday goodbye."
  12. Lullaby - An actual, bonafide lullaby. More beautiful vocals. A given, of course, if BettySoo is the singer. Said vocals are accompanied by acoustic guitar and cello. And, some soft woodwinds rounding things out. Lovely.

All music and lyrics (every heartbreaking one of them) by BettySoo. And, of course, she did all the artwork and layout of the CD. She's a very talented young lady on so many fronts. Wow.

This really is an amazing CD. Go buy it. Listen to it. But, maybe not if you're down. And, maybe not all at once. And, certainly not with a bottle of wine (or a six back of beer) at hand. It's a gorgeous thing, though.

And, from BettySoo's home page, an intro to the CD that maybe I should've heeded before I plunged into this little project:

Marriages start, marriages crumble, daughters run away, innocence is lost, husbands punch their wives in the face, and those lost causes we've resigned to the wind get sober and start over. Children are born - but some don't make it past five.

During the five years since her last album of original material, BettySoo zigzagged her way across the North American and European continents more than a few times. Mostly, she toured. Every other minute, she was flying to visit best friends in rehab, driving for days with friends whose family lives were crumbling, visiting mental hospitals, going to houses and cleaning kitchens and bathrooms when friends had no will left to do it themselves.

Yeah. That tells you exactly where this CD is coming from. And, now that I'm done, I'm really glad I didn't live-tweet this. I could not have finished.

Posted by Joanna | Permalink

Thursday - March 27, 2014

Campus Watch #69

From today's report:

2300 Guadalupe
Reckless Driving - Racing: Two vehicles were observed stopped at a red light. When the light turned green, both vehicles accelerated to a high rate of speed. One of the vehicles slowed when they reached approximately 40 MPH. The other continued to accelerate to a speed nearing 70 MPH. The non-UT driver of the "winning" vehicle admitted to have been trying to out accelerate the driver of the other vehicle. That subject took his victory lap in the back of a squad car. Occurred on 03/27/14 at 2:17 AM.

70 MPH on the Drag? What an idiot. Truly.

Posted by Joanna | Permalink

Friday - February 21, 2014

Campus Watch #68

From today's report:

Norman Hackerman Building
Theft: A brown leather wallet containing $2,313 in cash, three forms of identification cards and a debit card was stolen after it was left in a 1st floor men's restroom stall. Loss value: $2,318.00. Occurred on 02/20/14 between 1:30 PM and 1:35 PM.

Huh. It's rather amazing to me that someone would carry that amount of cash around with them these days. Also interesting that he knew exactly how much cash he had. It's a very specific amount. I could not be that accurate with the cash in my pocket right this moment. It is a lot less, though.

Posted by Joanna | Permalink

Tuesday - February 18, 2014

Campus Watch #67

From yesterday's report:

Main Building
Burglary: Multiple new Apple MacBooks were stolen from a secured 1st floor storage area. Loss value: $54,947.00. Occurred between 02/13/14 at 5:00 AM and 02/14/14 at 07:00 AM.


(Apologies, once again, for the fact that the only time I'm inspired to post here anymore is to post this sort of thing. I really should work on changing that, eh?)

Posted by Joanna | Permalink