Sunday, June 6, 2010

Vacation reading listtttttt

So this 4 months study abroad experience has become more of a 4 month vacation. Not what I expected. But the exchange program is a joke and so here I have been with very much too much time on my hands. One thing I am proud of having accomplished is a veritable list of books read. Talk to me, Goose. I'd like to start a discussion on any one of them. But no one ever comments on my blog. So mainly I just want to gloat on my accomplishment publicly.

Thomas Hardy's Tess of the D'Urbervilles
Ian Fleming's 2nd James Bond novel, From Russia With Love
Anne Rice's Interview With the Vampire
Aldous Huxley's Brave New World and After Many a Summer Dies the Swan
Henry James' The Turn of the Screw
Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin
D.H. Lawrence's The Virgin and the Gypsy and The Fox
Daphne DuMaurier's The Scapegoat

and I'm now working on Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane. Pretty fuckin a lot if you ask me. But then, what the hell else am I doing.


Sunday, May 16, 2010

Yeah, I know my place

Ok the mathematics post was a bust. It was fun wearing Mommy's heels while it lasted and I can humbly accept my role in life as existing well outside the math community.

...and INSIDE the LINGUIST community! That's right people, get excited, here comes some linguistics-ball! AGHHH Are YOU excited?? I know IIII AMMMM

But really though, let's talk about the word nother. I hear so many people use this word as an adjective all on its own, as an odd, abbreviated, red-headed stepchild of another. I've even heard weird nerdy dictionary rumors that nother is soon to be added to the American vocabulary canon as a spin-off of its legitimate older sister. But that is false. And nother actually falls under another rule altogether, one that every person on earth can relate to and appreciate.

The rule that Linguistics calls "the Fuckin' rule" is also known more modestly as "the Expletive rule" or simply "the Infix rule." I was following up on one of my favorite blogs (a joint-project between modern linguists Mark Liberman and Geoffrey K. Pullum called The Language Log), and remembered my favorite linguistic rule! AGHHHH MAH FAVORITE LINGUISTIC RULE because it proves that it is possible for English and Language geeks (lak me!) to be cool enough to cuss! And I realized that this is exactly where nother exists! AMAZING

So in a nutshell, the Fuckin' Rule dictates the ways in which emphasis words, most commonly fuckin, may be entered into the middle of another word (or phrase) usually to add fervor to its exclamation. Everyone recognizes Abso-fuckin-lutely, yes?? And all of its family members (ri-goddam-diculous, Every fuckin day, etc.)? How FUN is it to use them.

Moving on. So nother is used in exactly the same way. The only way I've heard the word used is in the phrase, "A whole nother...". But when you consider the Fuckin' rule, "A whole nother" is actually "A-whole-nother," where whole is the infix and nother is not its own word but simply the last half of the infixed word another. GAH IT'S LANGUAGE MAGIC

Anyway, check out this site for a great explanation of the Fuckin' Rule:
Linguistics: An introduction to linguistic theory

I hope I've redeemed myself.

Please leave off regarding me as a piece of meat

Aggggh is this not the cutest creature you have ever seen? And yes, we DID get this close to these irresistibly fuzzy animales. You are jealous.

(By the way, picture to the left is (c) Jordan Mynarcik.)

So you are asking yourself how this DOPESAUCE experience was made possible. I will elucidate. Firstly, the goal of visiting Argentina's Lujan Zoo was not attained without incredible feats of Spanish-speaking and various accent-interpreting (including northern-Argentine, Chilean, slang, drunk, and speaking-through-dentures, among other varieties) on the part of Hannah and myself. One wonderful thing I have come to appreciate about home is that when you ask a person for directions and they honestly do not know how to help you, they admit it. Contrarily-wise, Argentines will pretend they know exactly what you're talking about and in turn tell you directional LIES. But, hard feelings aside, and omitting what totaled to approximately six hours of being lost in the tiny BFE northern pueblito of Lujan, Argentina, the trip was amazing.

Secondly, that is in fact a picture of me petting a tiger. No, it's not photo-shopped, I really am an OG. But I couldn't help displaying a certain amount of incredulity and terror on my face, as I'm sure you've noticed. The paws were as big as my hands, baby!!! Crazy.

Thirdly, let's talk about proper Zoo management and organization. Haha. Really though, I'm not trying ta catch a case here, I just thought it was super funny to see camels hanging out with sheep and ducks. So odd. At one point, under the cover of darkness, we watched as a team of two overall-ed men wheelbarrowed a gang of meat chunks over to one of the enclosures, lifted a giant metal door on the wall, and commenced shoveling anatomically-distinguishable chicken parts into the compound. We realized a moment later that it was the Puma cage. Strangely reminiscent of watching Muldoon's team lower a live cow into the Velociraptor paddock in Jurassic Park. So inconsiderate of these animals' regular eating habits. And yet, so badass.

Finally, Holy Crap. Giant lions are seriously stealthy. While we were organizing our group, trying to exit the park and figure out how the hell to avoid getting lost on our trip home now that it was dark, unbeknownst to us the large nocturnal cats were assembling. Imagine you are a friggin Lion, captured from the wild and set up in way-too-small-of-a cage, living on raw chicken all day. You know you wanna attack something. That shit is just in your blood. My advice to anyone who wishes to avoid nearly peeing their pants at a zoo at night is to never absentmindedly find yourself standing next to the full-grown lion enclosure in the dark. I thought I heard something behind me and peered into the darkness of the cage at my rear, when finally I distinguished that, through the shoddy protection of a chain-link fence, a giant-ass lion was staring at my body from a mere few feet away. Um, NOT COOL. Once I discerned his enormous efficient bulk, I slowly moved to my left, then to my right, and watched his head almost imperceptibly follow my movements. Again, just like one's tour jeep breaking down right in front of the T-Rex compound. NOT COOL. So, yeah. National Geographic is real and don't ever lose respect for the wildlife. Ever. Because they want to eat you.

Similar advice from Katt Williams (who is the Bomb) below.

My last attempt at mathematics, ever

It was just a few days ago, and it was the only time in my life I can EVER remember thinking that what I was trying to explain at the moment would be far more clear in mathematical terms. So here is the sum of my experiences in Argentina:

Ev ↓ Sv ↑

(where Ev is the extent of my English vocabulary and Sv is the extent of my Spanish vocabulary.)

touching baby Tigers > touching baby Lions
Rhinocerii = active at night = dangerous

Ratio of An to Ad = 1/1

(where An is the Amount of Argentines who have No idea what they are talking about and Ad is the Amount of Argentines who will give you Directions to a place anyway.)

Dm ↑ Am ↓

(where Dm is my Desire to eat Marshmallows and Am is the Availability of Marshmallows.)

Sp ⇒ Ft
Ft ↑ Rt ↑

(where Sp is my completely lax and absolutely NOT challenging Shitty school Program, Ft is the amount of Free Time I have as a result of said Shitty Program, and Rt is the amount of Time I spend Reading classic literature in my apartment.)

Crema de Maní ≠ nor does it → Regular Good Old Fashioned A-mur-ican Peanut Butter

Brujería ≠ good witch magic

(...and old superstitious Argentine ladies will be angry if you suggest otherwise.)

Mate cocido = awesome

Skype ≡ the bomb

and finally,

(1 Bl + 1 Bv + 1 Bf + 2 Bc + 1 Nz) / 3 Og = E

(where Bl is Bottle of Caña Legui, Bv is Bottle of Vodka, Bf is Bottle of Fernet, Bc is Bottle of Coca Cola, Nz is Night Tour of the Buenos Aires Zoo, Og is Original Gangster, and E is Éxito, which is Spanish for Success Success Success.)

Basic math, I know, but let's not expect leaps and bounds from an English major who never made it past Intro to Stats. I must admit that simple math language is the perfect medium for blandly expressing my frustration and elation at certain moments of this Argentina trip. Also, it was fun to pretend I have any business in the math world, even for just thirty minutes while I drafted this blog post.


Saturday, April 10, 2010


... as a follow up to my last post, I'd like to mention that BOOOOOYAH you can find a HIP HOP section in Norton Anthology's African American Literature canon.

Check out the Table of Contents if you don't believe me:

The Norton Anthology of African American Literature: Book Contents

Scroll down. Works include some Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five, Queen Latifah, Public Enemy, Biggie, Nas, and Rakim. Not to mention Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder appear in the Rhythm & Blues section. WHUT WHUT hip hop, legitimized. Now, if we could only introduce it into the larger, American Lit canon... but that might still be a while.

What are our favorite old school rappers doing now?

Well, I'll tell you.

Funny some of the ways these roots-of-hip-hop-as-we-know-it stars are popping up in the mainstream world today. Who knew that Tone-Loc played an animated lizard in a kid's film, or Biz Markie is now teaching children to beat box on Nick Jr. every week. I'm sure you can share my sentiments, and laugh with me now as we see what began as a highly controversial noise-pollution movement evolve into a legitimate section of culture that the 70s, 80s, and 90s generations are now teaching their kids. It goes to show that every movement received with negative feedback in one stage of its existence ultimately lives on and perhaps even prospers, as those rebellious youths who embraced it inevitably have children and pass on what they dug. Cheers, hip hop.

We got Tone-Loc bustin' a fat beat in the 20th Century Fox Australian film Fern Gully as Goanna the purple lizard singing, "If I'm Gonna Eat Somebody, It Might As Well Be You." Favorite lines: "Kick it one time," and "Welcome to da food chain".

We got Schoolly D breakin' it out in the Cartoon Network Adult Swim cult hit Aqua Teen Hunger Force theme song.
"Meatwad makin' money, see, Meatwad get the honeys, see...
Ice on my fingers and my toes and I'm a Taurus":

...and finally, "Just a Friend" star Biz Markie appears on Nick Jr.'s Yo Gabba Gabba with his own segment called "Biz's Beat of the Day." He marks out simple beat boxing so that children can follow along. WHO KNEW this is amazing!!!

Also, lemme just throw out there that Yo Gabba Gabba sounds like it's kind of the bomb. It's a hit kids show hosted by one "DJ Lance Rock" (score) that's recently gained steam with college students and even older crowds for its retro stylistic taste, with regular guest appearances from super cool music and film stars like Jack Black, The Shins, Andy Samberg, Shiny Toy Guns, Sugarland, Tony Hawk, The Roots, Laila Ali, Elijah Wood, Mýa, Sean Kingston, The Aquabats, MGMT, The Ting Tings, "Weird Al" Yankovic, The Killers, Weezer, and Devo.

Here's the opening theme song: I'm just saying, no wonder so many little babies have ADD.


Sunday, April 4, 2010


Ummmm I found Dexter episodes online.

HOLY CRAP How will I ever get myself to leave my room now.

Yessssss get on it... as long as you don't mind Spanish subtitles