Monday, October 31, 2011

blast from the past

I forgot how much I love Star Trek! One of these days I must make these series part of my ever expanding movie collection...for now, thank you, You Tube. :-)

Thursday, October 27, 2011

the art of being late

Why is it every time I foray into Los Angeles with the goal of cultural enrichment something crazy happens, and I find myself in an oh-my-goodness-we-are-going-to-be-late -- we-will-never-make-it-on-time situation?! I mean, really?! Here I am trying to expand my arts and culture palate and something backfires. (South Pacific, Wicket, and Barbra Streisand come to mine...)

Last night my mother and I saw Celtic Thunder at the Greek Theater. It was my first time at this venue, and since I was a little concerned by its location in the heart of LA traffic I suggested we leave 2 hours before the concert. Now, I'm a Southern California girl, born and bred. LA traffic is not a new concept. As a child I provided backseat support while we drive what felt like hours to tour a museum. I interned in Century City for a semester (that was fun) and made the commute twice a week. And by now I think I know every side street around the Ahmanson. Suffice it to say, I know the drill and thought two hours would be ample time for the drive.

Wednesday. October 26, 2011. I left work 30 minutes early and had just enough time to grab a bite to eat, quick change, and check traffic before leaving for the Greek. I plotted a route guaranteed to provide the least resistance, and off we went. Things were going along just fine...until the 110. Suddenly, I went from the lovely carpool lane to the parking lot that was the freeway and we sat...and sat...and sat. 6:30. 7:00. We still had to take the 101 to Vermont Ave and head into the hills. Things were not looking good.

Now, for those of you who know me, I do not like being late. At all. Neither does my mother. I think it’s inbred because I’ve been this way since I can remember. In recent years I’ve learned to tame my I’m-going-to-be-late anxiety and adopt more of a Que Sera Sera attitude when it comes to circumstances beyond my control. However last night I failed. Miserably. I was seriously uptight about the possibility of being late and finally stopped looking at my watch because it only made me feel worse. Of course, when I finally checked the time and discovered it was 7:27 I was more than a little frustrated. We were just entering the maze the Greek calls "parking," and it was a zoo. After navigating through a zillion orange cones and making one wrong turn we were finally parked and power walking to the venue. When we entered the premises the lights were still up meaning the concert hadn’t started yet. Whew. But wait! I wanted a program, the concession stand is right here, and there’s no line. Might as well buy it now, right?! The transaction took less than 90 seconds but in that time the lights dimmed, and we raced into the venue and to our seats. Just in the nick of time!

To the Celtic Thunder stage manager/lead decision maker who started the show late: thank you.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

christmastime is here

I know it isn't exactly time to start thinking about the holidays, but it is close enough that I'm having my annual why-didn't-I-save-more-money-throughout-the-year crisis. (I also may or may not have listened to a Christmas song or two earlier this month. Sarah McLachlan's River & Wintersong were simply too good of an urge to pass up) Over the weekend, my mom decorated the stairs with poinsettias in her usual October fare, and red is king around the house! And, even though it doesn't seem possible that it could be October already, in a very strange way I'm actually ready for Christmas. After seven years of going through the holiday season exhausted from finals, papers, thesis stress, etc, etc, I'm still making up for the seven years I skated through. In that spirit, I've decided there's nothing wrong with enjoying the holidays for a couple extra months. Just think of it as Christmas in October!

Friday, October 7, 2011

quote wall

Your work is going to fill a large part of your life and the only way to be truly satisfied is to…love what you do.

- Steve Jobs

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

topic of interest

This is a post that will interest approx 0% of this blog readership, but I'm going to write anyway. :-)

This evening Fullerton Public Library hosted COPH Nite, an opportunity for those of us at the Center for Oral and Public History (COPH, for those of you not in the know) to share with the community what we do and why we do it. Thanks to an overzealous storm system, attendance was small, but some of the topics reignited my personal interest in this thing called oral history.

Think about it. We actually go out into the community and talk to real people about specific topics, hopefully ones near and dear to our heart. (if not dear, we at least learn to tolerate them!) Everyone has a story, and through this methodology we call "oral history" we capture and preserve that perspective, that life, someones memories. Pretty cool, huh?!

I also love talking about memory studies (see Robert Kraft's Memory Perceived: Recalling the Holocaust for a great read), interview techniques, and learning from my friends and colleagues about how to deal with, shall I say, more "challenging" interview moments. (a personal best: one of my El Toro narrators pointblank asked me during his interview if I thought Nixon would be remembered as one of the ten greatest presidents. Not only do we try to keep ourselves out of the interview, but Nixon is such a controversial figure. What on earth do I say?! I had to do some FAST thinking on that one!)

And then there's German history, my personal area of study. I mean, come on. Who doesn't love reading Norman Naimark's, Russians in Germany (one of the key works that introduced me to the horrors of post-war rape), Christopher Browning's, Ordinary Men (how "ordinary" Germans were transformed into active and willing participants in the Final Solution) and finally, Allison Weir's Frauen (a collection of oral histories given by women who lived in Germany during the Third Reich).

(by now, I've probably lost half of you. And why would you be yawning? You can't possibly be bored!)

Obviously, I'm still passionate about the topic (three years post-graduation). While I still maintain an active interest in film, this is equally as exciting and has morphed into my current line of work. I never in a million years thought I'd be working in oral history as a career. (nor did I anticipate becoming a semi-expert in all things Marine Corps / El Toro Marine Corps Air Station) It just goes to show you crazy, random jobs do exist...and people like me will actually fill them!

That's all.

(for anyone that actually made it to the end, I hereby bestow on you an honorary gold star.)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

say the name

When you don't know what else to pray
When you can't find the words to say
Say the Name...of Jesus

Sunday, October 2, 2011

sunday evening quiz

So, it's Sunday evening, and you have the evening at home. What do you do?

1) watch a movie you've been putting off for months
2) catch up on journaling
3) finally finish the Agathe Christie mystery that's still sitting on your nightstand
4) put in work time to make up hours for upcoming family reunion

I'll let you decide which option won. :-(