Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Extreme Coffee Shop

This morning I was just waiting for my coffee, basking in the glory of having purchased new lead for my pencils, when into the coffee shop walks this girl wearing cowboy boots, a suuuper short denim skirt, and a pink polo with the collar POPped. I thought to myself "I guess if I'm going to wear the same sweater day after day I should not judge people's outfit choices."

Then Another one walked in!! Then, I realized that the first one was with Another one! And then Another one walked in!

These sentences don't make sense, so let me just do a quick re-cap.
Four girls.
Four pairs of cowboy boots.
Four scandalously short denim skirts.
Four pink polos with the collars popped.

It just didn't seem appropriate given the time of day and location. Not that I know a time of day or location that would be more appropriate though.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

My Life's Ultimate Passion

Contra dancing is the thing in life that I am most passionate about. I don't know if I have ever loved a thing so much. Last night Brandon and I drove up to Montpelier for their regular contra dance. The caller was Nils Fredlund (who is possibly one of the best callers ever and sometimes plays his trombone with the band) and the band was Atlantic Crossing (who played phenomenally). Apparently Atlantic Crossing got their name because one of the fiddle players lived in New England, and one of the fiddle players lived in England, so when they played together one of them had to cross the Atlantic. Then they got married, and he moved here, so the name is not quite so accurate anymore.

In comparison to the Norwich contra dances, the Montpelier dance is in a smaller hall and has more people show up. Also, I think the average age is much younger, and they are more lively and energetic and not as much about traditional New England folk dance, like Norwich can tend to be. Don't get me wrong, I love my local Norwich dance, but I just love the Montpelier dance in a different way. It is fun to see a lot of the same faces in both places too. And despite the fact that I have not been sleeping enough lately, my tiredness will never keep me from dancing every dance. Contra makes me feel alive to the point of keeping me awake for hours after the dance has ended. Perhaps it has something to do with the sense of community established in a contra dance.

Plus the other highlight of the Montpelier dance was seeing some of my old favorites who I hadn't yet run into since my return from the North. One is Miss Bailey, who is my 5 year old little contra buddy. At the break we sat on the floor and talked about Pirate Booty and this pirate movie she really likes. When we were sitting there chatting this other little girl came up and started chatting with us too. Her name was Maya and she is 9, but she will be turning 10 soon. We share the same birthday. Also her skirt was from Bangladesh, where her stepfather has built homes for poor children where they can get food, shelter, clothing, and education. He has built homes in Nepal and two other places also, and Maya has visited each of the places once, except for Bangladesh where she went twice. Also, she is home schooled, so missing school to travel to these places is not even an issue. Even the kids I meet at contra are some of the most fascinating people around.

Then I danced a dance with Bailey, which was a little challenging, but tons of fun. She has been contra dancing for longer than I have, so she knows what all the moves mean, but she just needs you to remind her what to do and when, and to make sure she is in the right place. The great thing about contra is that it just repeats, so by the end of it I would say, "it's your turn to do a star!" and she would come back and say "now its YOUR turn to do a star!" which was really cute. Plus most people get a kick out of dancing with her, so she inspires a lot of smiles. Unfortunately, I think some people thought she was my daughter because she usually only dances with her dad (who is one of the men who prefers dancing in a skirt). It was worth it though, because I just never see any kids these days, so it was good to get my kid-fix and my contra-fix all at the same time.

All-in-all it was a spectacular time, and I don't know why but I always manage to have way more fun than I ever thought was possible. Plus on the way home I learned about the musical highway which I think is amazing.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Targeted Ads Know What I'm Thinking

So the google targeted ads are highly skilled. Often I find myself clicking the links, when I have never before clicked the links for ads. Like when Nicole and I were emailing about starting gardens for the summer I got a lot of good ads that I just couldn't stop clicking. Also, I get some good ads for outdoor gear. One time I found myself playing on the Timbuk2 website where you can design your own bag. It is amazing. Then I thought to myself, "Self how did you get to this website? And why are you not doing real work on a Tuesday morning?"
Today the targeted ads have gone one step further. They gave me the ad for and the little bit of info said, "Buy a case of 48 rolls of Charmin Big Roll toilet paper and save." It was like Google knew that within the past hour I had a conversation with Julie about how we needed to buy toilet paper. I didn't send any emails about that!