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26 April 2006

An Array of Holidays

Happy Administrative Professionals Day®, everyone! Yes, I know that just about everyone who regularly reads this is not an administrative professional. Heck, I might as well say none of you are. Just like Waitangi Day, I give you this greeting because of the calendar hanging in my kitchen.

Why did this holiday in particular catch my attention? Simple: it's a registered trademark. In fact, the publishers of the calendar hanging in my kitchen went so far as to put the following notice at the bottom of the April page:

Administrative Professionals Day is a registered trademark of the
International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP).
Honestly. Who decides to trademark a holiday, and why? I asked one of my friends this very important question, and the best she could come up with was that they did it "because no one had anything better to do and they were on crack," which is her answer for just about anything.

Feeling relieved by this definitive answer from a credible source, I decided to compare Administrative Professionals Day® to Christmas™, or something like that. I know that's a bit sacrilegious, but this just shows how ridiculous it is. I guess it has to do with the marketing.

Nevertheless, we should honor our administrative professionals today. While they don't necessarily need a trademarked holiday, they do deserve a little recognition, and if a trademarked holiday is what it takes, so be it. As such, I sent this to all the administrative professionals at my school, plus the librarian (why not?). So, if you're reading this, I appreciate you.

But that's not all. You see, I told one of my other friends that I would be posting today and I gave her a little hint. She immediately started guessing other holidays that are today that I could have chosen to write about.

Apparently today is Hug a Friend Day and National Static Cling Day. She also told me that it is National Bird Day, but further research proved that to be on 05 January. Oh, well. Mark your calendars for next year!

More importantly, it's National Pretzel Day, which means I'm going to give a bag of pretzels to someone random. Perhaps I should give pretzels to the administrative professionals, too...

It also is Hug an Australian Day, which is a shame, because we had our Australian foriegn exchange student last year. If only I'd known sooner...

Well, we have quite the array of holidays for today. But, of course, that's the case every day, and most of them are for pure profit. Oh, well.

Just stay tuned, because I have plans for declaring my own unofficial holiday in August. Of course, you'll hear about it in July (you've got to have some prep time). Until then, happy whatever-today-is!

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23 April 2006

Dream 2

Finally, I have time to post this dream, which I had well over a month ago. It really struck me as quite weird. I mean, honestly, how does my brain come up with these things? So, continuing my Dream Series:

Dream 2: Throwing Tartar Sauce, night of 07-08 March 2006

This dream was set in late February, over the course of one school day. Apparently, I had first-period gym, and I don't even have gym this year. But anyways, being February, it was really cold outside (frigid, actually), but our gym teacher wanted to go outside. Instead of putting on the standard gym T-shirt and shorts, I donned a standard gym sweatshirt and sweatpants (which don't exist). But, no. Our teacher insisted that we wear the lighter uniform. I refused, and thus was turned in for one day detention for insubordination (which is actually 3 days ISS).

But that wasn't all.

At lunch, they were serving those breaded chicken patties that you could easily get confused for a fish fillet sandwich. Anyways, I was eating my lunch when all of a sudden the principal comes up to me and says, "What do you think you're doing?" I have no clue what he's talking about, and I express this.

"That tartar sauce. You just threw a packet of tartar sauce."

First of all, the cafeteria wasn't serving fish, so they wouldn't have put out tartar sauce. Secondly, our school doesn't have packets of tartar sauce; you squeeze it out of a bottle. Lastly, I despise tartar sauce, and even if I had been eating fish and it had come in packets, you wouldn't catch me dead with it.

So, despite the fact that I had not thrown the tartar sauce, I got two days detention for it.

It must have been a slow day in the school office because I got my detention slip back later that day, and they even took the time to condense the two infractions into one slip. When I went to look at the bottom of the slip to see the dates I was to serve, my dormant mind produced the first dates it could, and they appeared in red pen: "3/25, 3/26, 3/27."

How convenient! The last three days of the Florida trip (including a Saturday and a Sunday)! Oh, well. Just before I woke up, the dream quickly skipped ahead to after the trip. Apparently, they weren't going to make me make up the days after all.



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21 April 2006

Measuring Day and Other Ramblings

An appropriate title, considering the name of my blog, isn't it? Lately, there's been so much on my mind that I decided to just write one post about it all. Or, at least, all that I can remember.

But before I start, I'd like to say that I do have another dream for my Dream Series (actually, I have for some time). I'll write about that in an upcoming post.

Anyways, Sunday was Easter, which can only mean one thing: measuring day (the chocolate's a given)! Yes, that's right. Every year when we visit my father's side of the family for Easter, we break out the measuring tape and make marks on the pantry door. This year, I grew a whopping eighth of an inch! My brother, on the other hand, grew three and thirteen-sixteenths inches.

This is fine, but what bugs me is that my brother, who is four years younger than me, was measured at the exact same height I was measured at only three years ago, which means he's a year ahead of me in height. And I've only grown a little over an inch since then, which means his forehead is right at my eye level. I'm afraid next year it'll be the other way around.

Anyways, when I came back to school on Tuesday, the nurse called me to her office for my annual vision check, along with the blood pressure, height, and weight. So I got measured again. And I will probably get measured today because I have a doctor's appointment, which, among other things, will entail me getting my immunizations up to date for college.

That's going to be loads of fun.

You see, I haven't had a single shot in about seven years. Now, I never liked shots to begin with, but not having to have dealt with the associated pain (and the anxiety leading up to it) for this long, I have gotten more and more scared of the day when I would. I'm sure in retrospect it won't be that bad, but you can bet I'll be squirming in the doctor's office this afternoon.

Speaking of pain, I'd better go back to the Disney trip, seeing how most of you weren't overly appreciative of the TravelLog posts. I never really intended to tell you much about Disney; I mean Disney is Disney, and that's about it. There's really not much of a way to explain it, and I wasn't about to go into the fun my friends and I had because, as nearly all of this blog's regular readership does not attend GHS, they don't know my friends.

But I digress; back to the part about pain. Saturday night of the Disney trip (thankfully after our Friday parade), our drum major's knee gave out, or started hurting, or something to that effect. Basically, she was having a lot of trouble walking. Which is a shame, because no girl that nice should have so many body parts that seem to hate her.

Anyways, when we went to Epcot for Sunday, we rented her a wheelchair so she wouldn't have to walk as much. And we basically pushed her around everywhere. It seemed like she really enjoyed the added attention (and I don't mean anything by that, it's just that she seemed pretty happy).

What made the rest of the group happy was that the wheelchair access entrance for most rides and attractions at Epcot is either the same as the exit or the same as the FASTPASS lane. So our group got to bypass a few long lines, which was an added bonus. By the end of the day, we were calling her our "personal FASTPASS," which was a bit impersonal, but we all laughed about it nonetheless.

In other news, I'm officially caught up on my third quarter work. Straight A's two quarters in a row...something that I've actually had to work hard for. So my GPA is calculated and since the cutoff for class rank calculation is the end of third quarter for seniors, it's almost definite that I will graduate as salutatorian, which isn't half bad (in fact, it's a lot more than half good!).

Well, I'm really getting tired of writing now. Maybe I'll come up with other ramblings in the next few weeks.


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15 April 2006

TravelLog 3

Well, I figured that it might as well be time to post the third and final installment of my TravelLog Series from Florida. So, here it is:

Thursday 23 March 2006, 08:09 ET – N 29º08.7' W 81º06.1' – Daytona Beach, FL

Okay. It's a new day. No one is especially cranky anymore, now they're just tired. Which is sometimes just as bad. Plus there's a garbage can poised under some middle-school girl who feels as though she's about to puke. But I don't blame her. Trying to tack on two final hours of travel after nineteen hours prior and a McDonald's breakfast is hard. I just hope to God she keeps it all down.

We spent the entire night ahead of schedule, and that is carrying into today. We'll get to the park around 09:30 or 09:45 as opposed to 11:00. But traffic's getting a tad heavier now. Oh, well, we're still ahead.

Now, with my GPS, I should always know where we are, right? Well, I left my rechargeable batteries under the bus, so I've been conserving the juice I have left, only firing the thing up on the hour and at stops. Well, since our new bus driver deactivated our personal overhead lights, I had to use the GPS backlight all night. People treated that light as if it were a godsend; an instant answer to the infamous question, "Where are we?", which would immediately be followed by "How much further?", either to Disney or to our next stop.

And don't even get me started on asking for the time. People asked so frequently I didn't even have to look at my watch. I'd just add 3, 5, or however many minutes it was to whatever I told the last person. Oh, well. We're almost there; no one cares what time it is now.

Monday 27 March 2006, 13:26 ET – N 40º15.0' W 80º11.4' – Strabane, PA

Wow. I really don't have much I want to write about. I mean, writing during Disney would be hard enough, but some other things came up besides that which made it next to impossible. And leaving late last night, our southern-leg driver deactivated the lighting (again). I slept a bit extra this morning, and now, all of a sudden, we're in Pennsylvania.

It's not really that cold; it's about the same as the near-record low Florida evenings we had. And since evening was the only time we could wander amongst the fifteen "buildings" of our hotel, we got quite used to how much we needed to bundle up.

It's amazing how bad this stretch of Pennsylvania road is. I'm going to have fun deciphering my handwriting when it comes time to type this. But it wasn't anywhere near so bad as a stretch we came up in southern West Virginia. For about three miles, people were complaining that our bus was "seizuring." Now, we occasionally get a big bump or two, but in West Virginia it was constant. So bad, I might even file a complaint, which is something I wouldn't ordinarily take the time to do.

I take that back. Pennsylvania has "seizure roads," too. Maybe I'll complain to two states. Yeah, we just hit a comparable stretch of road, only this one's been about four miles so far.

Well, I don't have much else to say right now. In upcoming entries, I'll attempt to look back at our four days in Disney World and provide a recap. Yay! Until then, my hand is tired, and the roads are worse.

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10 April 2006


Well, the decision has been made, and the deposit paid. I'll be attending the University of Pittsburgh in the fall. Classes start on 28 August, but something tells me I'll be there a lot sooner...

The caps and gowns for Graduation were delivered today, too. Only 59 days left until the big day!

And I've got senioritis like you wouldn't believe. After missing so much school in March, coming back has felt really weird. And since I'm officially behind in all of my classes, it's not been very fun, either. I just want to get through it and go. Oh, well. That time will come. Until then, I'll just grin and bear it.

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06 April 2006

Valley Forge

Okay, I'm breaking any rules of chronologicality I may or may not have had (and yes, that's not a word). Skipping ahead to States! I was in Valley Forge from 29 March to 01 April, and it was wonderful. The weather was actually halfway decent; I could keep my coat unbuttoned if I so chose. Yay for good weather!

Anyways, I didn't get to surprise my choir director with my chair placement; here's why: One of the other girls in the All-State Choir is going out with one of my classmates in the GHS Choir. Well, as soon as chairs were announced, she text-messaged him in the middle of the school day, right before Concert Choir was to start. Needless to say, he ignored the school's anti-cell phone rules, received the message, and told my director before I even had a chance to call her.

Oh, well. Now, I'll surprise you with my chair placement. You may have caught on to the hint in the previous paragraph that my chair placement was announced; they only announce the top 10 in each section (out of 30). Well, I got fifth chair! I was elated. Actually, it was a tie for fourth, and the tie-breaker put me .03 points behind the other kid (out of 280 possible), but it's okay because the two of us actually became pretty good friends.

The concert was amazing, as were rehearsals. Hearing such a sound is just heavenly. And knowing you're part of it is even better.

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05 April 2006


It is interesting to note that earlier today the clock and calendar read 01:02:03 04/05/06 (if you write your dates that way). Although most people were aware of this, most did not stay up for the event. I did, but not solely because of the event. Remember, I missed a lot of school in the last few weeks, so I designated that time as the time when I would stop doing homework and actually go to bed.

Bearing today's interesting date in mind, the GHS Class of 2006 (or, at least, certain people) designated today as Senior Skip Day. I did not skip; I practically missed the whole month of March, so why should I miss more, especially when I'm going on a college visit on Friday? Actually, there were several dozen seniors who didn't skip, even though they knew of the unofficial holiday. We actually care about our education.

On a random tangent, yet interesting nonetheless, our Guys and Dolls actors were wonderful on Monday while the instrumentalists were pitiful. Tuesday it was almost the complete opposite in my opinion, though we still have some kinks to work out. Our choir director (who's directing the instrumentalists, gasp!) printed out a sheet of notes for us to use on Monday regarding all sorts of changes, cues to watch for, and the like. Tuesday that was scrapped, and two pages were given to us. Today we'll be using a three-page version. It's amazing we don't all go insane!

It is also interesting to note that later today I turn 6666 days old. Don't start calling me a weirdo for having figured that out. In all honesty, I just got curious about a week ago, so I figured out my age in days (I use that number often enough and for various purposes). It turned out I was approaching 6666, so I thought I'd make mention of it when the time came. Now, the real question is: is this a good thing or a bad thing?

And in light of the 6666 possibly being a bad thing, I am going to assure you that things will go decently at the least. My ex-girlfriend's birthday isn't until tomorrow.


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04 April 2006

TravelLog 2

Continuing my TravelLog Series with more on my trip to Florida:

Wednesday 22 March 2006, 19:33 ET – N 37º44.4' W 81º12.4' – Macarthur, WV

Well, dinner wasn't very fun. It's a good thing I can laugh at myself.

I went to Sbarro, one of the "fine establishments" of the food court. The female drum major, to whom I was writing random notes earlier, was right behind me in line. She ordered a slice of cheese pizza, and when the lady behind the counter handed it to her, she dropped it. Right onto the front of my band jacket.

Even though garlic rolls were listed on their menu for individual sale at 79 cents a piece, the second lady would not give me one because I didn't get pasta. As I proceeded down the line, I stepped in a serving of spilled spaghetti that the third lady insists she warned me about (although probably only at a few soft decibels). So yeah. I'll be walking around with bits of spaghetti in my shoes, though I got most of it out.

Anyway, my slice of pizza was all I bought there. No drink, no garlic roll I wanted anyways. But I was still hungry, so I went to the Burger King nearby. Not hungry enough for a full meal, I asked if I could get a single cheeseburger in a meal (planning on getting a medium instead of a large). The girl at the register said I could do so only if I got a Kids' Meal. So I did. I mean, come on, I felt ridiculous, but I could give the top to one of my younger cousins or something, right?

Well, after specifically, asking for a plain burger, I got one covered with, among other things, mustard. I despise mustard. So I took it back to the counter, and after some additional wait, I got one the way I asked for it.

Now, it's always been a family rule that you can't look at your toy, let alone play with it, until you've finished your meal. So I observed this rule. But once the moment of truth arrived, I found that I had been given the "three and under" toy. Pathetic. Dearbeck was thoroughly amused though. Both by my experience and by my toy.

Ha ha ha.

Begging for someone to make my day better, pizza-dropping girl informed me that it was almost over. Okay then. Yay.

Wednesday 22 March 2006, 22:15 ET – N 35º53.0' W 80º52.0' – Statesville, NC

Finally. The officially designated quiet time. Yay.

Except, yeah, we're all pretty much on each others' nerves. My brother is flaming mad because someone else's Burger King drink rolled forward into his seat and spilled itself all over his kid-friendly road atlas (he's trying to learn navigational skills). A Pop-Tart rapper also appeared next to the culpable beverage, so of course he linked that to the crime.

"Okay, who ate the Pop-Tart?!?"

"No one's listening to you; they don't care."

"Well everyone's blaming me for it."

"No one has blamed you for anything."

"Well they keep telling me to pick up the mess. I call that blaming."

"They're simply asking you to pick it up so the bus doesn't have to be a pigsty."

"This kid's drink ruined my map!"

"Well fine, if you want to be a jerk about it, do so on your own time at your own expense. But be considerate of those of us who aren't involved at all."

"Well they haven't been very considerate of me."

And so on. For well over ten minutes, before he switched to something else that irked him. Before the rest stop, it was the movie. Or, rather, the people talking over the movie so he couldn't hear it. I could have told anyone that when you play two movies back-to-back, no one is going to pay attention to the second one.

And it didn't help that it was his favorite movie, either, Monty Python and the Holy Grail. I mean, it's a good movie, it's funny, but, let's face it, better films have been produced. And right after Monsters, Inc. with a bus full of mostly freshmen who don't know what it is, it doesn't stand a chance.

Now it's people's cell phones. They keep ringing, and every time, my brother gets wound up and says, "What the heck?" angrily, or something to that effect. Mind you, this is approximately once every three minutes right now.

I can't wait for people to fall asleep.


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02 April 2006

TravelLog 1

Well, I'm back from Florida (and from States, but we'll talk about that later). I kept some semblance of a "travel log" on the way down to Florida, but I'll admit I got so caught up in Disney World that I didn't write a word while I was down there. I did write a bit on the way back up, and I will eventually try to write a recap of all that happened, but probably not for a while.

I divided all I wrote (8 pages handwritten, yet only 3.5 typed) into three roughly equal parts. Please keep in mind that most of my posts go through extensive editing before they are posted here, but this TravelLog is exactly what I wrote on the trip, exactly as I thought of it. Therefore, if you notice a slight drop in the continuity of what I wrote, that is why.

Anyways, in a fashion quite similar to the one Laurel used for her mission trip to Mississippi, I will post one part at a time.

All times and locations refer to when and where the entry was started. Town names refer to the town closest to the given latitude/longitude coordinates.

Wednesday 22 March 2006, 12:38 ET - N 42º00.5' W 80º20.0' - Girard, PA

Here we go...

Wednesday 22 March 2006, 14:11 ET - N 40º50.5' W 80º06.2' - Harmony, PA

I think I'm going to start writing random notes to the other drum major; I've already seen Drumline.

Wednesday 22 March 2006, 15:23 ET - N 39º51.3' W 80º07.1' - Waynesburg, PA

The girl behind me is really bored. She was going through her purse and came across a green Sharpie. Suddenly she got impulsive. Seeing the "non-toxic" statement on the marker, she drew on her tongue. Apparently dark green doesn't taste very good. Washing it down with a box of Hi-C Fruit Punch (those little juice box things), she said she "just wanted to know what it tastes like."

Wednesday 22 March 2006, 15:56 ET - N 39º37.6' W 79º59.2' - Westover, WV

I am so glad West Virginia isn't stingy when it comes to maps for travelers. Just like three years ago, I'm trying to get an official highway map for every state we go through...preferably without spending a cent. Although I know that one of the Carolinas (North, I think) is especially stingy in that regard. Not so for the West Virginians. "Help yourself," said the lady behind the desk, one of three people in that crowded space.

Our percussion section leader started complaining about the urinal that was "out of order." He started ranting about how it was out of order when he was there a month and a half ago. Okay, then. So he pulled out his camera phone and said, "I'm going to take a picture of this toilet."

Bad idea.

I proceeded to tell people that he was taking pictures in the bathroom. Disgusting. But since I'm not that mean, I explained exactly what he was taking pictures of soon after I saw the surprised looks on their faces.

As I left the rest stop, I saw a sign that read, "Desk not responsible for vending machines." Immediately, I wished I had a camera. Because even though the desk is obviously not responsible for any poor performance of the vending machines, the people behind the desk might be. I told this to Dearbeck, and he just smiled and said, "Only you would notice that. Only you."

I should have borrowed the drummer's phone.

Wednesday 22 March 2006, 17:05 ET - N 38º46.5' W 80º40.4' - Flatwoods, WV

Well, Sharpie-girl was eating Cheetos. She offered me one; I refused. She insisted. She then started attacking me with the Cheeto. I was surprised that she would stoop so low as to attempt to molest me with a Cheeto. Honestly.

My brother asserts that due to the condensation on the windows, it's going to rain in the bus. Now he's attempting to completely beat Super Mario Land for what he says would be the sixteenth time, starting with Level 1-1. Oh, boy.

Wednesday 22 March 2006, 18:15 ET - N 38º01.8' W 81º07.4' - Fayetteville, WV

We just went over a really long bridge, one among the longest in the country. People were oohing and aahing about the great view of the New River, which flows south to north. It took 28 seconds to get over the bridge at about 68 miles per hour, meaning it was about half a mile long. Wow!

Then people oohed and aahed over a stray dog we saw at the last red light (we're off the Interstate for a while). Now a truck just cut us off, so our bus driver managed to pass it, honking our horn. Apparently the truck driver was on his cell phone as we passed.

My brother is complaining (not oohing and aahing) about the fact that no movie is being played and that we haven't stopped for dinner yet, even though the itinerary clearly says dinner isn't scheduled until 19:00. He's getting hyper and restless. It's really annoying. He just said, "We'd better eat in the next five minutes, starting now." Good luck with that one.

And now I'm oohing and aahing about my excessive use of "ooh" and "aah" as verbs. I mean, is that even allowed?

Okay. They just announced we're a mile and a half from dinner. Wonderful; we're about 25 minutes ahead of schedule...still.


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