Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Pie and Santa Claus

I made a pumpkin pie today.
like this. but without the tiny arms.
No real reason. I just happened to be at the grocery store earlier today, and I saw the cans of pumpkin sitting on the shelf, which is when I thought to myself: Hmm. You know, I didn't eat any pumpkin pie over Thanksgiving, which is really what Thanksgiving is for... And I enjoy baking... And pie is delicious. I wonder if we have any eggs. Eggs are strange, aren't they? Weird little embryonic shells. Freakish. Oh hey, where did Kelsey and Brett go? I had a dream I was lost in a grocery store last night. Huh. Just remembered that. Wonder if that has any symbolism...
like this. it was terrifying.
And so forth and so on. Even my brain rambles to itself. It's a little pathetic, to be honest.

I thought that I would continue to share my Christmas experiences with y'all, but then I heard a funny story, and have decided to share that instead.

Though I am now an 18 year old sophomore in college, I really can't help but cling to many of my childhood traditions, especially around the holidays. I'm quite confident that my sister and I will be doing our Christmas ritual until we're little old ladies. I am also quite confident that Santa Claus is a real person, and very much enjoys hanging out at the North Pole with a bunch of tiny hatted people and extra-furry deer. Though I bet he'd prefer spiced rum instead of milk.
Or Jack Daniels
However, today my roommate told me that when he was a little kid, and his parents first told him about this jolly tubby man dressed in red who came down the chimney to give him glorious free presents to open joyfully on Christmas morn, his immediate reaction was not delight and excitement, but abject terror.
this is not how I picture good ol' Kris Kringle, but apparently is how my roommate saw him. maybe he had a bad experience with one or something
Yeah, so when his parents told him about how Jolly Old Saint Nick would be appearing on Christmas Eve to put presents under his tree and put candy in his stocking, he burst into tears, and wouldn't stop shaking and whimpering. So finally his parents told him Santa didn't actually exist, and wouldn't be coming by to give him anything.
probably his Christmas tree looked like this, too
And that's why my childhood was better than his.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Seattle Shenannigans

So once again Thanksgiving has come and gone. We’ve all stuffed ourselves with turkey and pie, cranberry sauce and taters.
taters, precious?
Thanksgiving is a pretty bizarre holiday, isn’t it? I mean, I suppose the original Thanksgiving made sense. Those Pilgrims sure should have been excited that any one of them survived a year in America. Without the Native Americans around, they all would have died horrible deaths. Starvation- it’s a terrible way to go.

Though I rather doubt that said original Thanksgiving was as race-inclusive and happy-go-lucky as elementary school plays lead us to believe. I mean, for starters, the Pilgrims weren’t a very celebratory bunch. Puritans aren’t known for the wicked awesome parties they threw. Plus, when they had to come up with something to be thankful for, you know some of them were like “… and thank sweet baby Jesus I haven’t died of dysentery yet. Or influenza. Or consumption. You know, like Bill. Boy, he sure didn’t look so good. But he said I could have his plow, so- I’m thankful for Bill!”
trust me, this was a lot better than a picture of dysentary
But anymore, it’s pretty much all about food. And commercialism/consumerism. Yay, America! We’re real good at eating. And spending money on useless shit.

And then of course there’s Black Friday. Yikes, now there’s a scary thing. I haven’t heard if anyone got trampled in the rush to get in to Macy’s at 4am. Hopefully that didn’t happen this year. I definitely avoided the shopping centers on Friday, though I have to admit I was pretty tempted by some of the different sales. Especially the one at Target. I love Target. But I don’t have a car, so I sat in my aunt and uncle’s living room and watched infomercials until like 2am. God those are addictive. Speaking of things I don’t need… (here I thought about putting the picture of the Shamwow guy again, but figured I'd save you the indignity)

We went to Pike Place Market on Friday, which is always an awesome stop. It’s just chock full of interesting people, food, animals, and curios. Also, free samples. I’m pretty sure I ate my weight in tiny free morsels of food that the various vendors were giving out. My cousin Lucy and I hovered around the bread-and-fancy-olive oil place until they gave us the stinkeye for consuming an entire loaf of bread in under 3 minutes. We also learned the handy trick of going up to a food vendor and pretending interest in whatever they’re selling so they, the optimistic suckers, give you a sample so you can try it. Then you eat it, nod thoughtfully, and ask to try a different variety. Repeat the second step until the vendor catches on to the fact you are a charlatan with no intention of buying anything, and chases you away with sharp and/or heavy objects.
The Seattle Aquarium was another stop on our list for the day. I absolutely adore aquariums. Brightly colored fish darting through interesting exhibits, furry circling seals, poison-colored anemones waving sticky arms, and oddly-shaped branches of fantastical coral. Aquariums are great. However, there are two common marine animals which I dislike: barnacles and jellyfish. Barnacles because they are all gross and mushy inside, and jellyfish because they waft around their tanks, missing all sorts of important things like a brain, and a heart, and lungs, and eyes… and they sting. And they’re gross. And, and, and… they’re squishy. Did I mention they’re gross?
gah. even this picture makes me shudder
Also, I have great trouble saying the word “anemone”.  I always mix up the Ns and Ms. Despite all this, I still greatly enjoyed the trip, and took lots of blurry cell phone pictures. Lordy, I need to get a camera.
ameno- anmeno- amemo- shit. never mind.
All in all, I consider it a very successful day. We even went to a lovely restaurant on Capitol Hill called The Grill (are you supposed to italicize restaurant names? never mind, it looks classy anyways), and I had some most delicious butternut squash ravioli. I also adore ravioli. And it was all pretty great.

Holidays are pretty great.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Fair warning: this is going to be one of my more serious posts yet. Sorry, can't help it. It's just the kind of mood I'm currently in. It won't hurt my feelings if you skip it, imaginary readers. (mostly 'cause how on earth would I know? heh.)

I just watched a fantastic YouTube video by Pixar Animation studios called "It Gets Better- Love, Pixar". And it made me cry. 

Now let me be the first to tell you that I really don't cry all that often. I'm not the kind of girl to break down in to tears when I break a nail (though, in all fairness, this really freakin' hurts!), or when I miss the bus, or what have you. I'm just not an overly emotional person. To be quite honest, my best friends would probably tell you that getting any sort of gooey emotion out of me like peeling gum off your shoe. Harder than you'd think.

Anyway, I watched this video, and it just... kind of overwhelmed me. It's basically a bunch of Pixar employees reaching out to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender youth of today to tell them- hey. It gets better, I promise. Just hold on, don't lose hope, and you will make it through this.

Some of my dearest friends have gone through a whole lot in their struggle to just be fully accepted by family, so-called friends, teammates, and colleagues, and to see all these brave men and women sharing their stories made me want to run around hugging all these kids who have to fight through this by themselves. 

So let me tell you this right now. If you ever need someone to talk to, or someone to reach out to, hit me up, yo (sorry. I can't make it completely serious. and no one says "yo" completely serious). Not only if you're gay, but if you're just having a rough time. If you think nobody cares, nobody wants you around for whatever reason: guess what? I care. No, don't roll your eyes at me. I really, truly, honestly do. So come on over here, have a lean on me (I've been told I'm "comfortable" to lean on) and let me listen. I've been through some tough bits too, and I've helped others as well. I dare you to tell me.

Because nobody should be alone all the time.

*Edit. I also cried when Dobby died. Because I'm not a heartless bitch.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Why yes, I am a poor college student

Now I've already told you about how much I love Christmas and Thanksgiving. You may have assumed that this also means I love winter. If you assumed this, congratulations! You are correct. In fact, winter is my favorite season. 
this is what you get when you Google image search "awesome winter".
I adore everything that comes with winter- fuzzy sweaters, hot cocoa, snow, skiing (and by this I mean Alpine skiing, not Nordic. maybe if you're lucky I'll someday tell you about my Nordic skiing experience. in detail, that is), Santa, fires in the fireplace, spending time with my family, Christmas tree-hunting, my birthday, eggnog, and the smell of pine trees. 


Although this is my second year at college, it is my first year actually living off campus, which means it is my first year living somewhere that requires me to be all self-sufficient and whatnot. This also means it is my first year having to pay for things like electricity. In case you were wondering, it's not free. Or really all that cheap.

pictured: expensive
*Bit of backstory- It snowed here on Friday- quite a lot, actually. More than I expected, especially for the Pacific Northwest. There was lots of wind, and frozen ice particles flying everywhere, and I reveled in it. I love snow. Plus the next day I got to go sledding, which was awesome.
However, it turns out that here in the PNW snow turns to ice pretty darn quickly. And then everything is just super slippery and terrible- end backstory*
this is outside the grocery store on Friday. at like 8 pm. I sent this picture to my mom, 'cause I was so excited
So- now that if has officially decided to be winter, it's really freakin' cold outside. And it's also super windy, which makes it even colder. And because my roommates and I are poor, cheap-ass college kids, we're being stubborn and not turning on the heat. Thus, it's also really freakin' cold inside my apartment. Like really, really chilly.

I've also been drinking tea non-stop for three reasons: 1) it's nice and hot, and it warms me up from the inside 2) it's the only thing I have to drink besides milk 3) it's green tea, so it's good for you because of all the anti-oxidants and shit. In addition, I made some steamed green beans with margarine and garlic salt in the microwave because it was easy, and it would also be warm. Plus I like green beans.

I will now show you two pictures to prove to you just how cold it is in here.
me, sitting in my living room, wearing gloves, a hat, a scarf, a hoodie, and long warm socks. but you can't see the socks. also I'm wearing normal things like pants, and a shirt. but I was telling you about the extra-warm things.
my roommate, also sitting in our living room, wearing his winter parka. I took this picture sneakily. I should be a spy.
 Yeah. It's really cold.
*Update: My roommate read this, and would like to point out that though it looks like he is not wearing socks in this picture, he totally is. Because it's really fucking cold in here. (that's an indirect quote)


For most of my teenage life, I've been a rather nocturnal creature. For some reason, I've just always been better at staying up really late and then sleeping in even later. I guess part of that is just natural teenager-ism, but it's also just the way I'm wired.

When I'm feeling particularly ambitious, I think to myself "Tonight I'll go to bed early!", but it never happens. I end up watching just one more episode of (insert-current-crime-show-here), or rearranging my iTunes, or reading webcomics, or internet-window shopping for things I can't afford.
-Ooh! Look! A hovercraft! I've always wanted one of those!
Also, for some reason, I tend to get fits of hyperactivity at night. I get all giggly and energetic, and feel like running around like a squirrel on crack.
like this. ^
Take now, for instance. It's really quite late, and I just... can't sleep. Right now I'm watching Monk, which is really quite good, and I'm so excited for Thanksgiving, and I'm kinda stressing about finals in a few weeks, etc. ... So I could go lie in my bed, staring at the ceiling, all these things running though my brain in an endless loop. Or. I could sit here on the couch, pointlessly surfing the internet, playing Facebook games and Google image searching things like "squirrels on crack".

So what do you do late at night when you can't sleep, imaginary readers? Do you count sheep? Drink warm milk? Have your mum sing you a lullaby?

Personally, I like picturing cardboard boxes all hung up on a clothesline by the flaps. Always sends me right off to sleep. But my brain is strange like that.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Turkey and Tryptophan

Remember how I told you I love Christmas? Well, one of the reasons for this is because I love my family. We've always been pretty obnoxiously close. So because of this (also food) I really like Thanksgiving, too. And for only the second time in my life last year, I didn't spend Thanksgiving with my (immediate) family. But know what? It sucked.

Heh. But not really. Quite the contrary, actually.

Since I'm from Wyoming, and currently go to college about 1,000 miles away, it's a little difficult to just make a quick jaunt back to my hometown for those shorter holidays. Being from Lander is great, but it's kind of an epic journey just to make it back. It usually involves two or three plane rides, a drive, a shuttle bus, three tubes of toothpaste, a dog sled, and a socket wrench.

Ok, so not the last three. But it is quite the journey. So last year I went to my aunt and uncle's house in Seattle. They have two kids, Andrew and Lucy, who are (around) 9 and 13.

Instead of leaving at o'dark thirty to get on some stupid shuttle, I got to ride the train down to Seattle. Let me tell you, gentle readers, that riding the train along the coast of the Pacific Ocean is something to put on your bucket list. For a girl born and raised in Central Wyoming- it was kinda magical.

kinda like this... but better.
Andrew and my uncle Herbee (yeah. I know. but his real name is Rufus Herbert, so we stick with Herbee) picked me up at the downtown Seattle train station, and drove me to their house in Northern Seattle. It was pretty late already, since I'd taken the 8 o'clock train from Bellingham, but when we got to their house, Herbee made me a fried egg, and Lucy gave me her room to sleep in. Awww, family.

My mom's side of the family is HUGE (Herbee is her youngest brother) so I rarely get to hang out with just part of them. It was really nice to see just them for a little while.
this is like my mom's family, except less wholesome, blonde, and cute, and more Southern, hickish, and noisy. also I think there's more of them. love y'all!

They let me drive their station wagon through the dark, rain-slicked Seattle streets to go to the movie store, where Lucy and I picked out Land of the Lost, and I learned the importance of using a parking brake in Seattle. Lucy and Andrew and I went to go see The Blind Side, and I tried not to make gross sniffly noises while Andrew rolled his eyes at me. We went to some family friends of theirs and watched A Christmas Story, at which I ended up hanging out in the basement with a bunch of Andrew's friends telling gross-out stories and drinking root beer. (Hardcore, I know)
this one time, there was this worm...

We went out to a Chinese restaurant the night before I left and then I dragged them all to an Asian food market to smell a durian.
people have likened the smell to rotten meat. mmmm, tasty.

And at the end of my stay, Andrew turned to me thoughtfully and said "You know Marshall, you're pretty much like my mom. But better!"
Uh. Thank you?

I can't wait to go back next week!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Slickrock school- part 2

In the mornings, my sister and I would wake up when the fierce January sun would finally make the tent into such a sauna we were roasting in our squishy sleeping bags. We'd crawl bleary-eyed out of the tent, to find my mom and dad perched in Red Lodge chairs, sipping coffee from beat-up plastic NOLS mugs, reading whatever boring crap it is grownups read. The sun would be hanging in the cloudless cerulean sky, its morning rays carving fascinating shadows and shapes into the alien-like landscape of the red rock surrounding us. 
this is a real place. it's called Goblin Valley

My dad would usually make breakfast, and it was usually some kind of leftover from last night's dinner combined with some oh-so-delicious dehydrated hashbrowns or refried beans. And cheese. And death sauce. 
pictured: death sauce. no, I have no idea why we call it that, we just always have.
As these delicious yet mysterious combinations sizzled over our little propane stove, my sister and I would shove our sleeping bags up by our pillows at the top of the tent, my mom's camping version of "making our beds". Yeah. Still doesn't make sense, Mom.

After breakfast came slickrock school. 

Despite the aforementioned sun, Utah in January can still be chilly. So with the winter chill still gathered in shadowy rock pockets and threatening to numb toes and nip at ears, we'd find a particularly sun-warmed spot, and spread out picnic blankets or flattened Red Lodge chairs, and it'd be time for schoolwork. My sister and I would get out our workbooks for math, or science, or English, and peck away as the sun climbed higher into the sky. My mom was always available if you had a math question, and chances were she'd get way too excited about it. She was a math major in college, and still gets nerdily excited about things like finding x.
honestly Mom, I would have been content with this. sorry.

Then after that, my dad would usually have some sort of natural history lesson for us. He'd teach us how to extract pine nuts from a pinecone, or how to identify different types of evergreen trees by their needles, or how to predict the weather from the kinds of clouds in the sky.
it's actually much trickier than you'd think
And then the rest of the day would be ours. Cacky and I would race each other over the dips and dunes in the frozen sand, playing Mountain Goats and Mountain Lions, with ourselves as the cheerful, plucky, agile, goaty protagonists, and our slower plodding parents as the lions. Somehow we always won...

Some days if we'd make a trip into a nearby town, we'd raid the local thrift store in search of nice sturdy toy cars to send hurtling down the steepest slickrock faces at breakneck paces, to crash-land in a poof of sand and sometimes a crunch of plastic parts.
kinda like this, but with lizards.

We would chase after and capture little lizards, then plant the terrified reptiles in the cars, the lizards our unwilling kamikaze captains. (Don't worry, the lizards usually survived.) One of the reasons I have such an overactive imagination today is because I spent so much of my childhood in a place that looks like a cross between Mars and Crazypersonland. And I wouldn't have it any other way.
Cacky^                  Me^

Slickrock school

When I was a kid, my parents homeschooled me and my little sister. If you know me, but didn't already know that, you might say "Ohhhh, that explains a lot..."
Ha ha, imaginary reader. Ha ha.

Anyway, so we were homeschooled. Now I don't know about the rest of the world, but in Lander, WY, there were basically two reasons to homeschool your children. Option A) You were some sort of uber-religious person who believed your kids shouldn't be learning all that evolution-fossil-record nonsense, or Option B) You thought the public school system was crap, and reasoned you (or possibly a senile chimpanzee) could do a better job educating your children.

Thankfully for my own peace of mind, my parents were of the Option B group. And we hardly ever were taught by the chimp.
"now where did I leave my coffee cup?"

Anyway, my sister and I were (mostly) homeschooled until I was in 9th grade and she was in 7th.

And when we were little, our family would often take off in the middle of winter (or pretty much whenever it was really cold, which in Wyoming is basically 9 months out of the year) to abscond to Utah. Now I know what you're thinking: "Utah? Are you sure your parents weren't the uber religious type?" Yes. Because we would just skip off to the Utah-ian desert for large chunks of time. We'd set up a base camp in a campground, or sometimes just a patch of secluded BLM land somewhere, and then spend our days scampering over the red slickrock.
just try to tell me this isn't awesome.

It was pretty much the best way to grow up ever. Not that I'm boasting. (Ok, maybe just a little)

So we'd just go. We'd park our big black Ford crewcab with the ghettoed-out "camper" (read: an old silver truck-topper with a homemade plywood "bed" underneath) in a random pullout on BLM land, and then set up our purple tent. And it would be home for the next as-long-as-we-wanted. Pretty much, it was amazing.
        *ok, turns out this is going to be longer than I thought. which is why I'm splitting it up into 2 posts. so... to be continued...

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Babies are scary

So I was doing some Facebook stalking earlier today, and discovered that there are approximately 731 girls from my grade in high school that have had or are about to have babies. And that's a real number. I counted them all up.

Ok, so it's not a real number. There aren't even 731 people in my entire high school, so obviously I made that number up. I'm too lazy to actually count all of them, but needless to say it's a lot of people. Like... 7 or something like that. Which is a lot, considering my graduating class was a little over a hundred people.

And I just don't get it. I mean, I have absolutely no problem with babies, in fact I find them absolutely adorable. I also say all power to these girls- by all accounts they are wonderful, caring, loving mothers. Their kids are all super-duper adorable, everyone seems very happy with the arrangement.


I cannot imagine having a baby at my age (actually, pretty much ever. Do you know where you have to push that thing through? Yikes.) The very thought petrifies me.
pictured: absolutely terrifying.
Being responsible for another life like that is just such a huge commitment, for the rest of eternity. I can barely handle my own life, let alone make earth-shaking decisions for another tiny sentient being, like which cute, tiny hat to put on it's cute, tiny head, or whether I should name it Optimus Prime or Captain Awesome.
Captain Awesome! ...d'awww, nevermind, I forgot.
There are just so many opportunities for me to fuck up my own life, I would be so scared I would also irreparably damage this other person's life. Especially since I'm a college student, with my own ill-formed plans of what I want to do with my life. (hint: those plans do not include tiny people any time soon. Unless they are midgets.) I want to travel, I want to see the world! And it would be so much harder to do that with a baby.

Plus, I can barely afford to live in a tiny apartment with two roommates and also feed myself, so unless babies can subsist purely on Ramens, we'd both be shit out of luck.
I can haz ramen?
I don't know. I guess what I'm trying to say here is I won't be making my parents grandparents any time soon, for which I'm guessing they are quite grateful. (I'm going to do my best to make sure any kids I ever have call my parents "Mee-maw" and "Pee-paw". Because it'd be hilarious.)
To all you teenage moms out there: you are incredibly brave. Can I babysit sometime?

And kids someday? Sure, maybe so.

Or maybe I'll just have shitload of cats.
challenge accepted!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

I play rugby. You should too.

As a high school student, I was never very athletic. I tried cross-country skiing my freshman year, but it didn't really work out so well. My lack of coordination and real drive to do anything more than gasp across the finish line combined into a complete and utter lack of talent.

I did swim on my high school girl's swim team for the three years I was in public school, which, for the most part, I enjoyed. Once again with the not-very-good bit, but I loved my team, the coaches were great, and on occasion I pulled a miraculous time out of nowhere.

Then I came to college. I'll admit, I did pretty much nothing the first quarter of my freshman year. I read a lot, I suppose. (Ok, so there's really no "supposing" there. I read tons)
One of my two roommates, however, started playing woman's rugby for our college club team, and she would always come back from practice covered in grass, mud, and bruises with epically awesome stories about tackling, mauls, and rucks.
*photo credit Maria*

It sounded amazing.

So, winter quarter the same year, I joined the team.
And it was the best decision I've made thus far in my university career.

For those of you who are unaware, rugby is awesome. Like awesome to the power of 10. Times infinity. Squared.

We just played a game against Central Washington University (kicked their asses, thanks very much), so I felt the need to share my love of the game. It's a mad scramble-dash-tackle-ruck-tackle-ruck 80 minute glorious game.

get it, Socoe! (we're in the blue & white) *photo credit to Lindsey*

Granted, I'm not very good at rugby either, but let me just state for the record: I love it. My teammates are amazing, and the team as a whole is pretty freakin' amazing too. (Ranked #1 in Washington state right now, thanks very much!) Finally this is a sport I can throw myself wholly into, a sport I enjoy practicing for, enjoy watching, and enjoy playing. Don't know what I'd do without you, Flames (our team name).

So yeah. You should check it out sometime.

high tackle, sir? HIGH TACKLE! *photo credit Maria*

Friday, November 12, 2010


let me just say this right off the bat: Christmas is awesome. seriously. I love basically every single part of the season. I've heard a couple people recently saying that they just don't really care for Christmas, and it makes my heart hurt. no really, my poor heart curls into a little sad ball and says "Just go away. I can't... I can't bear it." and then it cries a little. it's very touching.

every year leading up to Christmas, my mom would get out our Advent calendar, and fill it with awesome things. and we don't have one of those wimpy little paper/cardboard contraptions with the shitty candy- oh no. we've got a big cloth number with deep pockets for every day of December up until the 24th. she'd hang it up in the hall at the bottom of the stairs, and each morning my sister and I would run downstairs from our rooms. then one of us (we'd trade off days) would solemnly and ceremoniously stick a hand into the pocket, and pull out whatever treat was hidden within. it was different every day. some days were chocolate days, some days were nail polish days, some days were little slips of paper that said things like "do a good deed today!" or "take your dog for a walk". low blow, Mom, low blow. of course you have to, because 1) it's in the Advent calendar and 2) it's almost Christmas. you bet your ass Santa is watching.

my house, complete with Christmas-decked crabapple tree

of course there were always two of each thing, so we could fairly share. whoever didn't pull the treat out that day got first pick- which didn't usually matter if it was gum, but it you can bet it was REALLY important if there was a mini Butterfinger and a mini Kit-Kat. sometimes I think my mom was performing some sort of psychological experiment on us.

as a kid, I was always kinda fuzzy on the whole concept of Advent. I never really paid attention when my mom would drag me to church, seeing as I'd usually bring a novel and hide it in my hymn book. Tamora Pierce doesn't have much to say about Advent. so even still, the concept of Advent is a little beyond me. I think I've mixed it up with the whole "Santa is watching your every move thing". something to do with being a good person. which I think is just grown-ups way of protecting themselves in snowball season.

so what I'm trying to say here is- I'm really excited for Christmas. to all the 0 people who read this (you know who you are, imaginary friends), expect more Christmas-themed posts. because it's amazing.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

ready, set, begin!

I've never considered myself interesting enough to have a blog, nor dedicated enough to actually post consistently.
Actually, until quite recently, I still didn't really know much at all about this whole blog business. But lately I've stumbled across several blogs I enjoy immensely, and they have, in turn, inspired me to do the same.
Good heavens that last sentence was just filled with commas. I tend to overuse them, sadly enough. But they're just so helpful! They're tiny little organizers with which I can easily compartmentalize my hurly-burly sentences into useful members of society. Now if I could only use them on other aspects of my life which do not as easily organize, I'd be golden.

So this is my first blog post. A bit of rambling about commas. Ah well, I obviously won't be winning any of those fancy-ass blogging awards any time soon. Unless those who nominate people also have a strange interest in commas.