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Michelle [userpic]

Blog Ahoy!

September 26th, 2010 (11:19 am)

Hey dudes.  I decided to start a blog about biking and reading.  If you're at all interested (and it's totally fine if you're not), you can find it here:  Books and Bikes
It may end up as a semi-journal of my life outside of biking and reading as well, but we'll see.

Michelle [userpic]

(no subject)

February 18th, 2008 (12:47 am)

I think today I wrote the first thing I've ever been proud of.


I hope I don't read it again tomorrow only to be ashamed.

Michelle [userpic]

(no subject)

December 14th, 2007 (12:56 am)

Sometimes I am a bad person. My window looks out onto the Webster driveway so I see people entering and leaving the building and the past few mornings I have spent my time sitting at my window using the computer and watching people slip and slide and alllllmost but not quite fall. It is hilarious. I feel like this superior being just for being up here on the third floor. The omniscient third-person narrator.

The other night I was walking up the hill from the library and I saw a rabbit hopping around the pavement. It hopped on over to the Student Union, slowly feeling around its surroundings and eventually standing up on its hind legs to nibble at the remnants of bushes around the building. I watched it for a good ten minutes while other people walked right past, not knowing a thing about what was going on. It was neat knowing this secret thing that no one else noticed.

Today Dave and I went out in the snow to brush off our cars. We kissed in the cold as the flakes fell in our faces and our glasses fogged up.

Last night at Cherish the Ladies they recited part II of Patrick Kavanagh's poem "A Childhood Christmas" which we had read recently in class so I recognized it immediately. I wasn't sure which poet since we've also read McNeice, Longley, and Murray.
"I nicked six nicks in the door-post
With my penknife's big blade -
There was a little one for cutting tobacco.
And I was six Christmases of age.

My father played the melodeon,
My mother milked the cows,
And I had a prayer like a white rose pinned
On the Virgin Mary's blouse."

Joni is sleeping over tonight because of the snow. We are going to snuggle in my tiny dorm bed like little girls, our feet crammed between the baseboard and mattress, arms and legs misplaced.

Michelle [userpic]

Can you tell I'm an English Major?

October 9th, 2007 (09:54 pm)

These are apparently the most unread books by Librarything.com's users. Or something. I find many of them surprising.

I've read the ones with asterisksCollapse )

Michelle [userpic]

200 Miles in 24 Hours (...more like 34 Hours)

September 16th, 2007 (04:04 pm)

Reach the Beach Relay. 200 miles across New Hampshire to end up on Hampton Beach. Who would sign up for such a thing? Crazy people. I am crazy. It was painful and amazing and felt so good. It's amazing what the human body is capable of. I ended up only having to run 16 miles. I say "only" but that is a lot! The funny part is if I had to run more, I could have. As much pain as my quads were in, as gross as I felt, I could have done another 5 miles at least. Our team did awesome (or at least our van did; Van 1 rocks!) and kept our pace under 10 minute miles the whole time. Joni unfortunately couldn't run her last leg because she was throwing up all morning so when Alex (our #1 runner) came in we just drove to the #3 runner start and dropped Sonja off. Joni felt bad about it, but she had already run at least 17 miles and her next one was 7.7 or something like that. Van 2 did pretty well, too, but they had two "runners" who were not in shape for it at all and ended up having to walk much of their portions. Melanie actually gave her last leg to Jeff instead.

As for me, my first leg was 4.8 miles, mostly downhill. It felt amazing. The weather was beautiful and the mountains all around me gave me amazing sights to look at. I thought I was running about 9:00 per mile but come to find out my pace was 7:07 per mile. FOR NEARLY 5 MILES! That is ridiculous. Granted, it was downhill, but still! At one point I was thinking to myself that I probably had 2 miles left when I passed a group of people who said "Half a mile to go!" so that was awesome. I was on a total runner's high after that run. My second run was at about midnight Friday night. I was decked out in a hat with a built in light, another light attached to the front of my shorts, a big red bike light on the back of my shorts, a neon vest, and a flashing wristband. Despite all my lights, it was PITCH DARK. No streetlights the entire time. I thought for sure I was going to trip on something or get hit by a car, especially because about half of it was gravel. That leg was 6.4 miles and it started raining shortly into it. The van drove by a few times and cheered me on. It didn't feel bad but it felt long. Seeing the flashing lights at the Transition Area was like a godsend. I don't think I've ever been happier to see Carly in my life. She had 7.4 in the rain and dark, which is completely amazing that she did it (and under 10 min/mile!). I ran my second leg at about 9:23/mile. My last leg I was nervous about. It was only 4.8 again but I was sore from the 11.2 miles I had already done. My hamstrings, quads, and butt were killing my (they still are, actually) but I set off and got it done. I ran it about 8:35/mile, which was amazing considering how much pain I was in. I think a lot of it had to do with the fact that there was a woman from one of the other teams a ways ahead of me that I felt I could pass. It took me probably 2.5 miles but I passed her and kept ahead of her for the rest of my leg. I sprinted it in at the end and the feeling of being DONE was just the most amazing thing of my life. How I did all this on 4 hours of sleep (in a van! the rest of the team slept in the two tents we had) I don't know. But now I can't wait for next year's RTB. Maybe I'll be one of the runners who has to do about 20 miles next year.

Michelle [userpic]

(no subject)

July 26th, 2007 (07:16 pm)

Sorry if this is preachy. I just worry about the world.

From Jackie Crosby of the Savannah Morning News and PosterChild:
If the iPhone lives up to its hype - Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Inc., predicts that 10 million will be sold in the first 18 months - environmentalists and others fear an avalanche of electronic waste as never before, as consumers decide they no longer need their cell phones, BlackBerrys or iPods.

Already the average American has three to five cell phones lying around, which stacks up to a nationwide total of 750 million unused phones lying dormant.

A lot of those phones go directly from the dresser drawer into the trash can. About 130 million a year meet that fate, according to the Environmental Protection Agency - even though the phones are filled with all sorts of toxic materials.

Cell phones already are the largest and fastest-growing segment of the e-waste world, and keeping them out of the waste stream is becoming even more difficult. Consumers, on average, get new phones every 18 months, although many recyclers think the turnover is much faster.

The sense of urgency is twofold. As a miner might have said, there's gold in them there phones. And there are other valuable metals that are expensive and destructive to scrape out of the earth.

So, if you’re convinced that you really need a cell phone, and equally convinced that you really must have yet another cell phone, don't be an E-tard, be an E-cycler!

Please?

Also found on PosterChild:
http://www.chrisjordan.com/current_set2.php

Do your part to save the world! Stop thinking "me" and start thinking "us."

Michelle [userpic]

(no subject)

June 24th, 2007 (11:48 pm)

"You're the vinegary dressing on the dull salad of my life."

Michelle [userpic]

(no subject)

June 1st, 2007 (10:43 am)

I stayed at Joni's house Monday-Wednesday. She's not done with work yet so it was just me and Timah home during the day while she and Brian went to work. It was very calming being there. The first night their 17-year-old neighbor from downstairs, Dave, built a fire so we sat out there simply watching it burn, talking quietly, and listening to Brian play the guitar. When he played some songs I knew (Guster's "May Parade" and some Dashboard) I sang along in some parts, but only quietly because unless I'm in the car I'm usually embarrassed singing in front of people. I've realized that having a fire is the perfect thing to be social and yet not be obligated to talk. When no one is speaking it's not awkward, but rather it seems like everyone is just very contemplative. I love the crackle and pop of the wood, sending up showers of sparks into the trees. It's like they're escaping - blazing on for a few moments before they disappear into the darkness. There's such a contrast between your legs and shoulders. My legs felt that wonderful heat from the fire radiating onto them, while my shoulders had goosebumps from the light breeze that carried the sparks away.

The next day I decided to bike around the town and draw some pictures. I didn't do as much drawing as I would have liked, but it was very nice nevertheless. I wore my pretty green dress. There are few things that I enjoy more than riding a bike in a dress - it makes me feel nostalgic somehow, as if riding bikes in dresses is something from a different time. I suppose that's appropriate, though, because Millbury itself seems from a different time. It's an old mill town, the kind that seems abandoned and lonely and yet there are inevitably (and surprisingly) people living there, going about their everyday business. I packed myself a lunch which I ate while sitting on a bench in the sunshine. Carrots, cucumbers, a peanut butter and banana sandwich, and water. Delicious and healthy. When I got home I wanted to watch TV but I couldn't figure out how to get it out of DVD mode so I watched an entire disc of "Scrubs." That night Joni and I biked a bit (but our crotches hurt from biking the day before hahaha so we only did a little bit) and then went running after dinner. Brian and Dave were fishing out on the pond so we went to see them, sitting on their lawn chairs on the bank, framed by shrubbery and tangled fishing line in the trees above.
My last day there I decided to do some "bikesploring" and unintentionally did 13 miles. I rode around one of those "Model Homes" neighborhoods. I understand they're for old people but nevertheless I would never want to live there. It was so depressing with all the houses exactly the same, decks on the back but no view worth seeing, treeless perfect green lawns. Miserable. I also rode around the old cemetery, which I thoroughly enjoyed. One road led to a dead end, shaded by trees with one tombstone as the focus. Ha. Dead end. That was unintentional. I took the Millbury/Worcester bike trail, too. It's nice to have a bike trail there, but it's nowhere near as nice as the Amherst bike trail. This one goes next to, under, and around different sections of highway. There aren't any of those sections where you feel truly alone in the world. Even at the parts where there are trees, it's not that dense forest feeling and you can hear the cars in the background. It was interesting to see what another bike trail was like, though. For the rest of the afternoon I just read "David Copperfield." I'd like to read 25 books this summer. If I keep choosing ones like David Copperfield, though, there is no way I will reach that goal. It's 870 pages and I'm only up to page 270. We'll see, though. At the Cape I typically get a ton of reading done and I'm headed there next Friday.

I'm home for now, though, and it's back to appointments and chores. I have to mow the lawn and then go running.

Michelle [userpic]

Home Home Homeeeeee

May 22nd, 2007 (08:19 pm)

I love home. So so so so so much. I love my family and I love vegging out on the couch with my mom and brother and cat. I love making pies with my mom as a surprise for when my dad gets home. I love biking with my brother when he's done with work. I love staying up late and being the only one awake. I love that my room is so messy I have to sleep on the couch. I love waking up to the sound of my mom stomping around upstairs. I love being surrounded by delicous snacks.

This is going to be a fantastic summer. I'll be working at camp, biking there and back every day. Biking with Kenny, running with Carly, possibly taking a Step Aerobics class? I need to visit Joni at Awesomehaus for several days (more than once), I need to visit Allyson and Pam in Mystic and we'll all go see Justine, I need to go to NA and see Jon King, and I need to go to Jen's house for a Puebla People Reunion. I will utilize mapquest hardcore. I will get to hang out with the party people I don't usually see during the school year (aka all you who read my lj, haha). I'm in for Pirates and for Zen, so chalk that up there.

I want to go hiking. Like ridiculously badly. Trisha, you like hiking, let's go. I was riding on the bike trail the other day and let me tell you that is amazing. It's like you're the only person in the world with the wind rushing in your ears turing to silence when you turn your head. There's marshy land and a canopy of trees above your head, like a welcoming archway. There's dense forest at times and that Robert Frost poem popped into my head, saying, "The woods are lovely, dark and deep." And I kept riding by different trails and as the land rose above me or dropped below me on either side of the trail I could see people hiking. At one part I saw a young couple making their way along the edge of the river as I went by on the bridge overhead.

I don't want to wear shoes this summer if I can help it. I mean of course at camp I'll have to but otherwise I'd prefer not to. I hope there are some of those days when I'm out running and then the sky just lets go and it pours and pours and pours and you feel diesel for being out running in the rain as the cars go by thinking, "What is that girl THINKING running in this?"

I have three and a half months to train. I am so out of shape for running. In September I could run 7 miles at an 8:18 pace. Now I can barely run 3 miles in under 30 minutes. But I think with the biking and if I run consistently and do crunches and stuff, I will be totally ready for the Reach the Beach Relay in September. I'm so excited for it; I think it will be an awesome yet horrible experience. I'll be running roughly 18 miles in less than 24 hours. The most I've ever run at one time is 8 miles and it was awful. So I really need to get myself to a place where 8 miles is, if not easy, as least not painful.

I also want to learn to cook. If I go to Ireland next spring there's no meal plan. I can't just live off cereal and pretzels; I'll actually have to be able to cook meals for myself. So maybe I'll buy a cookbook and do some experimenting this summer.

The downside of being home is that I'm not actually done with finals yet. I have a paper to write that is due Thursday at 1pm. I've written one page so far and I'll be writing more tonight. I have to be done by about 2:30 tomorrow because Mom and I are driving out to see Joni and get Thai food and shop at TJ Maxx.

This is jumbled but that's how my thoughts are. There's just so much that I want to do that I can only think about each thing for a second before I move on to the next. But I want to do them all.

Michelle [userpic]

For those of you keeping score at home...

May 15th, 2007 (07:41 pm)

I am sort of feeling like Bart and I are just going to be a friend thing for the summer and then maybe next semester something will happen. He's not done dealing with Magda and I'm just sort of floundering here. He cancelled last Friday then was in a bad mood when I saw him (by chance because I was hanging out in Marty's room) on Sunday. Tonight we got dinner (just at the dc), which was good and we talked for an hour and a half, but we didn't do the hug goodbye or anything. I asked if he wanted to go on an adventure to the Peace Pagoda sometime this weekend but he might be going home. So I probably won't see him before I move out. Granted, he will be here this summer but I don't want to force myself on him if he doesn't want to hang out with me. I don't know. I haven't given up yet because he did say:
1. He really likes me.
2. He thinks I'm easy to talk to.
3. He thinks I'm a beautiful woman.
4. He thinks there is definitely chemistry between us.
And Marty said he wouldn't say that if he didn't mean it, so we'll see. I don't think we're even sort of dating anymore, though. I'm not going to call him, if he wants to hang out I'll be here but otherwise oh well.

I just want things to be easy, but they never are.

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