Sunday, February 26, 2006

Crazy Love

A List of Today's Better Stuff:

1. Excellent cup of Columbian. I went to the Cyber Cafe to hang out with Kirsten, Mia, and Dan and I conceded to what I thought would be a mediocre cup of coffee. It was actually delicious--a medium roast with a rich presence and a charming (and weirdly nutty) aftertaste.

2. Room Decor. I decided earlier today that I'd like to hang some imported burlap coffee sacks around my half of the room. I'm working on getting some from Costa Rica and some from Columbia, my favorites. Figuring out where to hang them will be an issue. But they will make our room look so much more worldly. We already have a creased National Geographic map behind our futon. Let's kick it up a notch.

3. I wash my hands of "The Laramie Project." After an entire year, I am finally finished with this play. Unfortunately I misplaced the script before I had the opportunity to cite it at the end of my paper. Eesh. I didn't even get to say goodbye!

4. Hearing his voice. Little Bunny got a phone call from her Puma today. We talked about ham cubes at Ponderosa and Poison t-shirts and whatnot. Nothin' but a good time.

5. Quality time with Ellis. I finally have my guitar back at school after a terrible musical dry spell. I played through some of my old songs and it felt so great. I'm in love again. I just moistened a washcloth and rolled it up in the case to keep it from drying out. Such a drought in this room. I'm reminded of the song that I wrote from a translation from this Indian text: "The monsoon had come and was gone for a song/The rivers are dry as these hours are long." Just a little excerpt. The original text was about a woman waiting for her lover to return after the monsoon season. I adapted it to describe my creative drought. I think that was the lyric--it looks wrong logistically or something. Whatever. I pay my own bills.

6. Having a party. Roommate, Mia and I are planning a party for this Thursday night. At the library today we found a Lifetime DVD combo pack--"Mom at 16" and "Too Young to be a Dad" so we're going to borrow a projector from our hall and show them in one of our lounges on a big screen this Thursday night. We're making everyone wear pajamas and we'll probably carry on like a bunch of idiots. I'm excited:

Christine: I'll bring the nailpolish!
Me: I'll bring Tiger Beat!
Adam: I'll bring...testosterone!

And alas, I have discovered the missing sleepover ingredient that I was lacking in my youth.

7. Toxic B-Movie Meltdown! I bought two awful B-movies today at Marc's. One of them is called "The Bat" starring Vincent Price and Agnes Moorehead (I know, right!). The tagline is "When it flies, someone dies!" Then I got "Jekyll & Hyde: The Musical" starring David Hasselhoff on DVD. Wicked awesome.


I need to find the two books that I misplaced. This is really strange. What's my problem?

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Wrapped Up in Books

I had one of those perfect mornings today. My alarm sounded at 9:00 but I was still feeling lethargic so I turned it off and slept for exactly five more minutes. It was great. Then I rolled over and grabbed Rita Dove from my bookshelf. I spent about a half an hour turning her pages under my heavy down comforter with my cat nestled beside me in one of its thick white billows. The introduction that Ms. Dove wrote for her anthology was a sort of childhood recollection that reminded me so much of myself when I was younger. Shy and precocious and fuelled by literature. She did all of the same things I did--memorizing all of the titles on the shelves and being able to spot the new additions every week, beaming excitedly over a stack of books "chin-high" at the circulation desk.

I was so inspired that I felt motivated to head over to my library. I took a very nice, quick shower (I usually try to stay under seven minutes--water conservation and all) and had a cup of fresh black coffee. Then I threw on a sweater vest and my sister's old Airwalks and headed off to be a bookish little nerd.

There was a Friends of the Library Sale today so I headed in there first and looked through all the titles for some gems. I actually found a lot of great stuff but I didn't feel like spending too much money today because my funds are kind of tight lately since I don't have regular income at the moment. I found "Love Liza" on VHS for fifty cents. Since I'm in love with Philip Seymour Hoffman, I bought it. The movie actually is very well done but completely depressing. Still, it was fifty cents! And it's Philly! Then I took a chance on a novel called "Death Rat!" by Mike Nelson. It looks completely hysterical. The cover looks like an old 60's b-movie poster and the inside of the jacket described what could be a truly delightful literary romp. The prize that I found was a copy of "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius" by Dave Eggers which I've been meaning to read for some time now. So now I have this giant list of books that I need to get through. I think this summer I'm going to try to read one or two a week--I'll make a calendar or something.

There was a big case with a bunch of the classics in it and I was paging through Ptolemy and Aquinas and then I really wanted to crack open Plato so I did and there were about three little cards tucked inside the front cover. So I started to read them. They were these really personal love notes from this guy named Paul to his lady, Deb. Some of the things he wrote made me blush. Actually, it sounds like they had quite a tumultuous relationship. Two of the cards said things like "Deb, I love you I love you I love you I love you. I never ever ever meant to hurt you that way. Please keep me" and he also quoted a song--I'm sure of it--but I couldn't place which song it was. I just knew that the words sounded way too familiar to be original. Then in one of them (a valentine) Paul said "I can't want to see you in that new teddie that you've been telling me about. You're so beautiful. Please wear it tonight." It was crazy! I kind of wanted to take the cards out of the book and carry them around and maybe use them in a poem or something. But I felt like a creep reading them in the first place so I just tucked them back in. I don't know how you could give away a book (especially Plato) without leafing through it or anything. Maybe Paul and Deb broke up and the books were a gift from Paul so Deb wanted to throw them out so she wouldn't have to think about him when she looked at her bookshelf. After all, the cards were addressed to her and they were obviously very comfortably tucked in that gathering place inside the cover.

So anyway I went into the library after that and picked up a few things:

Southern Culture on the Skids "Mojo Box." A guy I was in a play with recommended this band to me. I couldn't remember how I'd heard of them when I saw this CD on the rack but now I remember that it was him. I kind of miss him so I picked it up. He has a folk radio show now. They probably don't ever play Southern Culture on the Skids.

R.E.M "Automatic for the People." My sister had this CD growing up and I used to steal it. So now I'm gonna burn my own copy.

Rocket From the Crypt "Group Sounds." I'm actually revisiting this album. It's fresh. Good summer music--they definitely sound like a bunch of hard rocking Californians.

R.E.M. "In Time: The Best of R.E.M. 1988-2003." What can I say? Michael Stipe's voice makes me feel human.

Sam Cooke "Portrait of a Legend 1951-1964." Anyone who doesn't like Sam Cooke doesn't know what it feels like to love.

Then I picked up a giant book called "In Style: Weddings" upon my mother's request because of my sister's wedding. I felt really weird carrying it around. Usually when I'm at the library I try to give off an "I'm a young intelligent single woman" vibe just in case a charming gentleman wishes to discuss the finer points of whatever CD or book or film I have tucked under my arm. So today I have this HUGE coffee-table-sized book with WEDDINGS in giant letters onthe front cover. I can't hide it. Actually I can't even tuck it under my arm because it's so big. So for a while I feel like a bride-to-be which is pretty funny because all I'm doing is floating in and out of rows of bookshelves with little conviction in my step and frankly with nothing important on my mind. I'm sure that in a couple of months I'll be a little less carefree when my duties as Maid of Honor start to stack up. But for now I guess it's kind of cool to casually tote a book about weddings without worrying about how napkins are going to be folded and which flowers are going to be in season and which gifts are appropriate to give to the wedding party.

For now, I am going to settle in and get some studying done. Then I think I'd like to go thrifting. I feel so calm today.

Friday, February 24, 2006

On the Fly

I'm going to try writing a song in this blog--I've got my guitar in front of me and I feel some stuff rising up so here it is:

I don't believe that you are real
Most of the time
The sincerity in your eyes
convinces me otherwise

We meet in streetlit parking lots
Most of the time
But it never feels temporary when I'm with you
My fingers close the door and yours lock mine

And we're not wasting time
We're not wasting time

This kind of thing happens in the movies
All of the time
The two of us make a slow motion montage
sweeping across the screen in black and white

We share a jawline and pulse
When we've got time
Kissing at stoplights, studying friction
Making the truth more real than fiction

And we're not wasting time
No, we're not wasting time

Way Over Yonder in the Minor Key

Every now and then I run across a poem that speaks so strongly to me in a certain moment. The poem that I am posting today arrived into my life this afternoon as I was leafing through books of poetry at Parma Regional Library. There was a middle-aged bespectacled man with kind eyes standing on the other side of the shelf and we smiled at one another over the stacks and when I looked down this was staring up at me:

His shirt

does not show his
true colors. Ice-

blue and of stuff
so common

anyone
could have bought it,

his shirt
is known only

to me, and only
at certain times

of the day.
At dawn

it is a flag
in the middle

of a square
waiting to catch

chill light.
Unbuttoned, it's

a sail suprised
by boundless joy.

In candlelight at turns
a penitent's

scarf or beggar's
fleece, his shirt is

inapproachable.
It is the very shape

and tint
of desire

and could be mistaken
for something quite

fragile and
ordinary.

-Rita Dove



I had the opportunity to meet Rita Dove two weeks ago and I missed it. I was completely heartbroken for a while and I picked up this book today as a kind of sweet penance. But after reading this poem, I feel like I've already met her and like she knows me and what I think every second of every day. Especially lately.

I think I'm going to be alright this weekend.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Our Own Personal Hailstorm

Christine and I made a run for Borders today. I was pissed off because I checked online for all of the stuff I wanted and they only had one of the three items I went there for. And last night on the website they said that they had all three in stock! Bastards.

So I got the Awards Edition of "American Beauty" which is the one thing I really asked for for my birthday and the one thing I didn't get. They didn't have "Raise the Red Lantern" or "The 40-Year-Old Virgin"--well, actually they had the latter but it was $29.99 and that's rubbish. My gift card was for $30 and there was no way I was spending it on one DVD that I could get at Best Buy for $16.00. At least buying the one DVD got me a coupon for 30% off my next purchase. So now I can go to another Borders and save more money. I rule!

Anyway, the reason for this post is not to discuss my frugality or my frustration with chain bookstores. Nay, this post is significant for another reason.

On the way home, me and Christine were on the highway and I was just chilling in the passenger seat, rockin' to Kanye West and all of a sudden this slew of tiny little rock things poured down on us from above. It was coming off the top of this big ugly dirty semi that was chugging along in front of us. So we accelerated and tried to pass on the left and as we were passing I looked up to see the idiot who was driving the giant jalopy of spewage and it was this disgusting trucker who happened to be looking right at me. Like, his head was turned and he was staring me in the face. So what could I do? I looked up at him and smiled. Then he pulled on that chain thing and honked his horn.

The dude was disgusting and creepy. He had a terrible long, dark, unkempt beard ala ZZ Top and these giant aviator sunglasses. And his smile. Oh, his creepy, creepy smile. So I waved as we went past. And then I cowered into the soft grey fibers of my seat and wept softly as Kanye spit the second verse of "Golddigger."

Sunday, February 19, 2006

I Make Myself Soar (and Sore.)

I'm on quite a high right now. I actually got to sleep in today for a change. I had some trippy dreams last night which is bizarre because I don't usually remember my dreams and I hate dreaming to begin with. Oh well. I woke up and everything was cool--I definitely sat up in bed though to see if the dude who tried to kill my parents was still bleeding on the floor after I had cut the tendons behind his knees. That was seriously one of my dreams.

A friend of mine once told me that there are still countries in the world where they make "yes or no" decisions by slashing the tendons behind the knees of one of the village peasants and if he falls forward the answer is yes and if he falls backwards the answer is no. Granted, this girl who told me this is the same girl who said that you can rearrange the letters in Michael Eisner's name to spell "Lucifer" but I still thought it was an interesting concept.

So anyway I had a bit of a sore throat this morning but I still had a lot of energy. I finally wrote a new song last night which was a good note to fall asleep on. I'm quite proud of the song really. I think he wants to be played slow. I'm not 100% sure yet though. Maybe I should slice through a peasant's tendons to decide.

I actually "worked-out" today. I wanted to listen to records and figured since I had all of this pent-up energy that I should burn some of it. So I jogged for a while on this small trampoline that we have at home (or the Urban Trainer as my mom and I call it) and worked with a few small weights and then I did a lot of yogic stuff for my muscles. I made it through two records before I quit. I could have gone longer I think but I have a short attention span I guess. I listened to NIN's "With Teeth" and the Police's "Outlandos D'Amour" which are excellent work-out albums. It's a hell of a lot better than sweating to the oldies.

That reminds me. Yesterday in the cars I was in at different times I randomly checked the radio to see if they were in fact still playing crap, and I ran into three Beach Boys songs. This was in a span of about six hours. And it wasn't like "Don't Worry Baby" or "God Only Knows." They were playing "California Girls" and "Surfin' USA" and "Kokomo." And I got so pissed. Because it's Cleveland. And I don't want to think about Kokomo. And they never play the Beach Boys this much during other times of the year when it's actually appropriate. I don't want to think about bodies in the sand and tropical drinks melting in my hand. It's depressing.

Right now I'm absorbing some new music. Yesterday I grabbed some stuff at the library again. In case anyone is curious, here's the list:

Common- "Be." I'm a big fan of Common. I was really into his one album "Like Water for Chocolate" a few years ago. This one is great as well. Not as good as the aforementioned though. Kanye stepped in and changed things around a bit.

Misfits- "Walk Among Us." I've been casually involved with the Misfits for awhile and last year my cousin's band opened a show for them and I got excited about them again, even though they are just way too old right now. Aging punks are depressing. They should all die young. Anyway, it was pretty shameful that I didn't have this album. So now I do.

The Concretes- "The Concretes." I was physically attracted to this CD because of its cover art, which reminded me of the art on the liner notes of the Wilco album "A Ghost is Born." I don't think they're connected since Wilco is on Nonesuch and the Concretes are on Astralwerks. Although Brian Eno did do some work with David Byrne on Nonesuch...and stop the dorkiness. Anyway, I made a good choice. The album is really easy and smart--a cool surf-beat on the drums and some tasteful guitar work. And the lead vocalist sounds tasty. Sometimes you can tell just by looking at a person..er, album.

Over the Rhine- "Ohio." My friend James recommended this album to me over a year ago. I really do enjoy Over the Rhine. They're one of those bands that I get cravings for. And this album is just superb. It's so much more powerful and packs a much more artistic punch than "Drunkard's Prayer." I'm in love.

Iron & Wine- "The Sea & the Rhythm." Greatest ever. This one's just an EP and after I brought it home I realized that I'd already heard all of the songs on it. But really it's good. And beards are good too.

And now some really great stuff that's written in the liner notes from Over the Rhine's "Ohio:"

"Like love, a voice can flood a life with possibility, the mouth of a river flowing from somewhere faraway yet familiar."

"We don't listen much to our own records after they get made, but we find ourselves replaying again and again many of the conversations that take place underneath and around those songs. We talked abotu Bob Dylan Starter-Kits and Tom Waits Finishing School. Sweaty hickey parties and haunted pianos with broken hearts. Shock and awe, oil and joy. We talked about how we're often more interesting when we're misunderstood. And about God, and meditation, and the waitress at the Greek restaurant. We talked about the fact that we had 21 new songs and not one damn hit."

And now I want to get back into the studio.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Start Me Up

I should have named my car. I feel like I'm trapped in the final moments of some terrible Lifetime movie called "She's Too Young to Die" or something. And I'm standing over my 2000 Seafoam Blue Toyota Echo with a fistful of black and with a furrowed brow and just one tear creeping down my cheek and settling on my quivering lip.

So I lay the flowers down on the frosted hood and I turn around and bite my lip and curse at the sky. "I never even knew her name. I never even knew her name!"

Alright so maybe it's not over yet. The truth of the matter is that I've been trying all day to start my car and all she's giving me are these pathetic churning sounds and little ejaculatory revs that hiss dejectedly when I turn my key and remove it from the ignition.

Thankfully, I'm at home tonight. So my dad was just able to do man tricks on it or something a few minutes ago and get it into the garage. I'm concerned though. I love this car. Yea, she's little but she's all I've known. And I've been through a lot in her. And let's not forget--she's only six years old! She's a baby! And a Japanese baby at that! The Japanese don't age! Look at Ken Watanabe for Pete's sake.

Maybe I should name my car Watanabe. Or Akira. Akira would be a cool name for a car. I hope it's not too late to give it a name. I'm gonna do better this time. I'm gonna do like Queen Latifah in "Last Holiday." I'm gonna dress Akira up in a white faux fur pimp coat and take her out to eat at really great restaurants and I'm gonna let her pick the music for once because frankly, I do tend to bogart the radio. And I'm gonna clean out her trunk and get rid of all those old copies of Scene Magazine and all of those blankets and empty bottles that have been festering up in there for so long.

And I'm gonna tell her I love her. Dammit I'm gonna tell her I love her.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Shaking in the Wind

It sounds so violent outside right now. The wind is just assaulting. I actually feel a little nervous and frightened, which sounds silly, but I guess all the horror movies I've seen since I was a kid have conditioned me to expect bad things to rise up with the wind.

I didn't have the greatest of mornings today. And it's strange because I think in the back of my mind I knew it was going to be that way when I went to bed last night. I listened to the Smiths and the last song I heard before bed was "Heroin" by the Velvet Underground. As much as I love that song for what it is, I just don't think it's a good one to fall asleep to. I woke up and dressed myself in black from head to toe. Then I cracked the blinds and saw the rain.

I don't feel the need to talk about why my morning was so poor or why I fell asleep this afternoon in the dark with the stereo on and then again with the television on. I woke up from a really bizarre dream and ended up feeling even worse than I did when I first lied down.

Katy and I finished up the screenplay that we're working on this afternoon. It's funny. I'm proud of it. I can't wait to produce it. After that we walked together to the Book & Bean and skipped over puddles and acted like wee school girls. She's really an awesome girl. So I made a purchase at the B&B and then we scurried back to the hall.

I don't have much to say really. Nothing of consequence. I am floating over and through things right now. I feel as though I am lying belly up in a warm swimming pool in late summer. At night when the streetlights surround me this sensation is heightened. And with the wind blowing against my back and pushing me forward I feel light. I feel a stronger connection with nature in this type of weather. I want to cling to the wet grass and stand in the puddles of rain on the sidewalk until the stagnant water soaks through the canvas of my tennis shoes. I think it's because everything feels so temporary at this time of year. The sun, the rain, the snow--it's all so fleeting. You can't count on it. So when you get it, you make the most of it.

When something special comes around you make the most of it and you never take it for granted. And it's always completely worth the wait. I think I learned that more than once this week.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Schmalentine's Day

February 13th, 2004: "Tomorrow is Valentine's Day/Singles Awareness Day. It's interesting to see how Valentine's Day has become such a parody of itself. If you're not making fun of Valentine's Day, you're taking it too seriously.

February 14th, 2005: "I probably shouldn't say this but I have three "valentines" this year. I don't know which one of my gentleman callers I'd like to eat barbecue with first...Yea not really. I mean, I do and I don't, but not really. Follow? Me either. It's a shame that even though I have three valentines, I'll probably be stuck in my room tonight alone watching movies. What a waste of a night off. Oh well. It's a day. A DAY for Pete's sake. I'm cooler/better/awesomer than any day."

Those are quotes from my old blog. I felt the need to comment on Valentine's Day since it happens tomorrow. I'm sure most people I know expect me to maintain my cynical perspective and to continue my tradition of bashing the day with firey resentment. Things are a little different this year though.

Normally I would live the day as any other day and only acknowledge its existence if one of my friends spontaneously asked me to rap on it. And I'd say how ridiculous the whole thing is. Because it really is. If there's one thing I can't stand more it's something that's been fabricated solely to evoke false sentimentality. It's why I can't stand Nicholas Sparks. Everything he writes is written to force his reader to feel a certain way. I hate being forced to feel. I hate things that are "touching." So to me Valentine's Day has always been deplorable.

This year I can't hate February 14th because I actually have some special plans that I'm very excited about. They're sort of vague at the moment but the important thing is that I'm going to spend time with a dynamite fellow. I still hate Valentine's Day--don't worry. But now it's more of a streamlined hatred that allows for me to actually enjoy myself in the face of all of that blatant pink and red and lacey adversity.

There are a few things that I enjoy about Valentine's Day. For one, I really do like those Necco Brand Conversation Hearts although I'm finding that anymore they are bending over backwards a bit too far to accomodate for my generation's flash-in-the-pan slang. When I pull out a powdery little purple heart and see "TEXT ME" stamped on it, I cringe a little bit. I think this year Necco has a Neil Young fan because I ate one the other day that said "♥ OF GOLD." No complaints about that one.

I think I'm going to lie down on roomie's futon and watch a movie. We've had it folded down in its "bed-mode" for about a week now and it's great. Very Austin Powers, only without the shagging. Mostly it's just cool to sprawl out and read in a giant pile of pillows and blankets.

I'm 99% sure that roomie and I are getting an apartment next year. I'm excited. We're soul mates.

I need a haircut in a major way. I barely have curls anymore and I look really shaggy. I have to wait until Saturday though for my appointment. Bummer!

It's so cold outside. My face hurts.

Tuesday, February 7, 2006

I Love the Hades

A truly excellent birthday so far and it's not even 5:00 yet.

I think the Maelstrom meeting was my favorite part of the day. I've really found my niche with these folks. Last year I knew I wanted to be a part of their elite little group of exclusivists the day I was forced to attend the Student Activities Fair and I saw them all sitting cross-legged in a corner with a guitar and a case full of satire. I naturally gravitated towards them and we've been orbiting happily together ever since.

It doesn't bother me anymore that we don't get funding. I'm so happy with this publication and I can't believe that in a short year I went from the youngest staff writer in history to the co-editor-in-chief. I'm so happy. Maelstrom is the best thing that's happened to me at school.

Now I've got to run out. I'll edit later.

EDIT:
I won second place!
My previously posted essay on being in love with the pudgy choir boy ended up winning second place in the Cleveland Free Times Valentine's Day essay contest. I didn't win anything concrete, but it's pretty cool to be printed, especially in one of my favorite publications.

Right now Pumpkin and Honey Bunny are talking about robbery! I love "Pulp Fiction" a lot.

I got the cake I wanted. My dad went to my favorite local bakery and picked up a small cassata cake and had it written on for me. So sweet of him. I think tonight is going to be a movie/cake night. I think I feel like watching "Seven Samurai." Although ABC Family is showing "Cruel Intentions" tonight which I just can't even begin to comprehend. That movie is such smut--it's the kind of movie that tries so hard to be overtly sexual that it becomes laughable. Maybe I'll watch it.

For now, I'm gonna clean my area and have a nap. Keep on rockin' in the free world.

Thursday, February 2, 2006

No other label will do...

Today I got a call from a politician friend of mine. It was about 10:30. The roomie and I were just having a good time watching "Swingers" in honor of my birthday next week. (It's the tenth anniversary of the first time I saw that film--it's a film that had a profound effect on the way that I watch movies.)

So anyway this fella called and asked if I wanted to "wander around" with him. He was in the Giant Eagle at the time, holding a loaf of Italian bread he said. And he wanted me to meet him there so we could sit outside and eat the bread. He even described his attire, apparently trying to seduce me from my comfy lair. A cowboy hat, a pair of Nike sweatpants, and a Thundercats t-shirt. (The sad thing is, it almost worked.)

Seriously though. Weird call. "Come out and wander around with me and eat this loaf of dry bread." I love it. I love imagining what it would have been like if I'd actually gone. I see us sitting on a tree lawn watching a bunch of drunken idiots swaggering and howling around Beech Street. And we'd eat about three slices of the bread and then get tired of it and go to Coe Lake and throw it in for the sunfish and the ducks. Although I don't think there are many ducks at Coe Lake this time of year.

I'm thrilled that my apartment next year is going to be near the lake. Like, right on the lake. And the Berea library is just a mere fifty paces past the steps to the bank. I cannot wait to revel in my geeky glory. Usually I have to walk a while to get there and the weather is so bizarre that there have been times when it starts raining just as I reach the boardwalk. I need to stop writing about this. I'll get cabin fever.

I actually have plans on my birthday this year. Usually I stay in, watch a movie, and lay low until someone calls and rousts me out. I'm a bit of a hermit I guess and birthdays are never very different. This year it's off to dinner and to see "Rent." I think my eighteenth was the lamest birthday ever. I dressed up and waited for someone to call and then when nobody did I locked myself in the basement and watched "Lost in Translation" in the dark...in FULLSCREEN. Eewwww.

I'm so tempted to head out for a walk right now. Campus is scary on Thursday nights though. Don't want to be found all swollen and strangled underneath the fountain in Coe Lake.

Wednesday, February 1, 2006

Yea, sorta like her...

This week at our Maelstrom meeting we agreed on whoring ourselves out for a special "Blind Date" issue. Readers who are interested in dating any of our staff writers are supposed to send e-mails to us with 75 words on why they want to get with us. Then we have to go on dates with these people and report on it. Completely bizarre, eh? Instead of putting our pictures in Maelstrom, we're all submitting photos of "look-alike" celebrities. I've narrowed down my search to three, based on the suggestions of my staff:

Lisa Loeb. I can see it I guess. We both have glasses and we wear scarves and yes, there was a time when I found the film "Reality Bites" to be completely life-changing, on a more pathetic level than Loeb who basically owes her face to Ethan Hawke for giving "Stay" a shot. I think she was 19 at that time or something and she didn't have a recording contract or anything. That was a total digression. Anyway we're both folk/pop musicians. I don't straighten my hair or anything so cool like that but I think I'm sweeter than her because I'm not obsessed with Hello Kitty trinkets.

Tina Fey. I get this one the most--people have actually told me, unprompted, that I remind them of Tina Fey. I take this as a pretty high compliment because she's pretty kickass. We both rock the satirical humor thing,we have a similar smirk, and of course the trademark specs help. This picture is a total glamour shot but her hair is more like mine in it so I chose this one. Her dress is so friggin' shiny!

Daria Morgendorffer. I get this one a lot too, mostly from this chick at work. I'd like to think that I vary the inflection of my unusually husky voice a little bit more than her, but I like the whole "think fast, talk slow" vibe. And I own that green jacket--really I do. I'll have to get a picture of myself in it to freak people out. That show was great until Daria started dating. Daria's not supposed to have a boyfriend. Maybe I should stop comparing myself to Daria.

I really do love writing for Maelstrom because I can do ridiculous stuff like this every week. Plus I can meet my "one-date-a-semester" quota. It's too bad we don't have funding though because I'll probably have to go dutch and it's probably not going to be worth it at all. Or maybe I should just start worrying about people actually responding to our contest ad...hmm.