September 24, 2004

Got GMail?

I've just become a part of what will be known to future generations as one of the most brilliant marketing schemes of the century: GMail. It's only available on a test basis, which means you have to get "invited" by someone who has it. (The hype accelerates by the hour this way.) Granted, it's taking a page from the Beanie Babies' book, but it's timing is more brilliant than Beanie Babies' could have ever been. Google just recently went public with its stock after posting, I believe, above their earnings projections last quarter: A rare thing in the post 9-11 .com world. To keep the hype alive into the next quarter (possibly the next two or three quarters), they're releasing limited "GMail" accounts now as a "test." The classic way to create a demand is to provide limited supply. My guess is that they go public with their email accounts shortly after their stock earnings' hype fades.

I want to work for Google.

I mean it, people. I have been plotting ways to get into Google for about a year now. They currently have technical writing positions available (which I could so do), except for the fact that you have to have C++ knowledge. Never fear, good people! This is why it's good to work for a college. They offer night sessions of this class. Also, they want HTML. As you can see from the seldom changing form of my blog, HTML is a bit of a mystery to me as yet. Maybe I'll take that class, too. So, any of you computer people out there: Is the math required for C++ hard? And by hard, I mean how much math do you have to know?

At any rate, I could probably win them over with my stunning good looks, grace, and charm (right), but I want to give everybody else a fair shot. For now, I will be content with my new GMail account, which is so much better than the six other email accounts I possess. That's right, six. Just call me the email whore (that's for you, Danika) from here on out, but do it nicely. I just might bestow an invite on you.

Posted by LoWriter at 03:56 PM | Comments (4)

September 19, 2004

Love/Hate Relationship

I have discovered a fool proof way to cheer yourself up. It's also free, which, for us recent college grads, is a must. Are you ready? Here it is: Write a list of things you love. Then, if you're still crabby, write a list of things you hate. (If your hate list is longer than your love list, you may want to look into that.) Here's mine:

Things I Love:
The Coke commercial that plays if you get to the movie theater early.
Morning doves.
The way grass feels between my toes when I swing barefoot.
Singing along with the radio, off key and at the top of my lungs.
White lies.
The smell of hay.
Waterproof boots.
Waking up from a dream with its music still in my ears.
Igneous rocks.
Fuzzy blankets.
Warm showers on cold mornings.
Running through warm raindrops.
Pressing down wet beach sand with my fingers.
Nail polish.
Monstrous speakers that rattle my rib cage when I stand next to them.
McDonald's milk in a carton with a straw.
Motorcycle rides when I have to hang on tightly to whoever's driving.
Simon and Garfunkel on a cold rainy day.
The wind.
Turtles sunning themselves near the lake in Roseville's Central Park.

And so that you don't feel too much like Maria Von Trap and burst into a rousing rendition of "My Favorite Things," here's the list of things I hate. (You'll never see a nun singing that from the hillsides.)

Things I Hate:
When the words don't line up with the lips on TV shows and movies.
Red lights.
The way socks feel when they bunch around your foot instide your shoes.
Weak handshakes.
Strangers and new acquaintences who feel compelled to touch me.
Tater Tot Hotdish.
People kicking the back of my chair.
The glass ceiling.
Answering the same question over and over.
People who create rules for themselves because they're too afraid to live freely.
Nonsense presented as fact.
People who trivialize suicide/suicidal people.
People tapping my shoulder blades.
Road salt.
Grocery shopping.

I have been enjoying this for days. I think you'll enjoy it too. If not, you can add it to your list of things you hate. ;)

Posted by LoWriter at 09:48 PM | Comments (3)

September 07, 2004

Seven Years Ago on Wednesday...

Amy used to bring catalogs to school beginning in October, and Amy, Kimmy, and I would sit in math class and circle one thing we wanted from every page. This would go on until Christmas finally came. We had to pick out one thing from every page, no matter what. Even if everything on the page was ugly and made for old women. It was a wonderful game that lasted us months.

As juniors, Kimmy, Amy, and I chased each other up and down slides and across monkey bars and over jungle gyms. We turned the slide in the park into a water slide with buckets of icy water because the city hose wasn’t long enough. She threw a bucket of water in on me while I was peeing in the campground bathrooms and sang “They Call Me Mellow Yellow” and never stopped running until Kimmy and I gave up.

Amy believed that a beautiful sunset was the soul of a good person being ushered into heaven after they’d died.

She used to spend days plotting up ways to scare her family on Halloween. One year she invited me over, and we played a “Spookey Sounds” CD and hid under the table wearing skull rings and holding fake spiders and jumped out and screamed when her family came home and didn’t notice us at first.

If I have been short or distant or rude or subdued, I apologize, but seven years ago on Wednesday, my best friend Amy committed suicide.

Every year, I think about how to spend September 8th. In the past, I’ve spent it eating ice cream and watching movies with a friend I trusted enough not to talk to me about it. One year, I spent it drinking. Last year, I don’t think I did much on the actual day, but on the anniversary of her funeral, I went home from work “sick” and made a four day weekend of it and spoiled myself rotten and never told anyone what was really going on. I’m not sure what I’ll do this year. I think I’m just going to try to hang out like it’s a normal day. I tried to write something about her, but the problem with writing about someone you have grieved for is that whatever you write always seems rather trite. I sort of think that I’ll just go to work and then to writing group and then to bed. It’s not like I need a specific day to remind me of her. I remember her all the time, especially at this time of year.

This summer, I cleaned out my closets. I acquired a dresser and a file cabinet, and I had to have a place to put them, so I tackled the places where stuff has been gathering since I moved in. Over the course of my time in this apartment, my mom has sent a bunch of my stuff from her place to mine, and I hadn’t even looked at it until this summer when I had to. I didn’t look in the bags and boxes because I knew what I would find. It was inevitable. Every time I go through any of my old childhood things, I find pieces of Amy.

This time, it was a green box with sunflowers on it. Inside was a note painted in pink nail polish. It was the sort of note you pass back and forth in class. It didn’t talk about anything special. The fact that it was written in pink nail polish made it Amy’s.

This is as close as I can come to describing her: Letters written in pink nail polish, catalog wishes, and games of tag. I wish I could tell you what she was. If I could give you a picture of her, you would still not understand what made her Amy. You would have a likeness, but not the person. Even if I tell you the stories, you cannot see her. She is who I remember while the world remembers 9-11 and Princess Dianna. She is the great tragedy of my youth, not the national ones that everyone remembers. Her death made my childhood crumble, and I can't even satisfactorily explain who she was.

Posted by LoWriter at 05:39 PM | Comments (2)