Monday, November 29, 2010

Me, My Big Mouth, and I

Last week I only had class on Monday since I don't have Tuesday classes and the rest of the week was Thanksgiving Break.  Yes, it was pretty sweet.  Some of the the students in my last class of the day were debating whether they would attend their Tuesday classes or just head home for the break instead.  I pointed out that the vacation portion of the week didn't actually start until Wednesday and they run the risk of missing something relevant or at least graded.  Just call me Professor Buzzkill.  The students said that they wished their professors would just cancel classes which would let them off the hook.  I told them that doing this was kind of unprofessional.  As a bonus bit of wisdom, I gave them the advice that calling in sick after a long weekend looks pretty sketchy and should be avoided.

Not to sound arrogant or anything but I'm pretty sure the universe listens to me and thinks it's funny to mess with me.

Having said that, it should come as no surprise that at about 7 p.m. on the Sunday of Thanksgiving break I started to become sick.  So, eating my own words (and little else) I called in sick for Monday.

So, I'm going to try something:  I want you all to know that winning the lottery is really sketchy and should be avoided.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Reason #47 To Get LASIK

I wear glasses.  I wear them for every waking minute of my life.  I own contact lenses but only wear them when I am swimming or something similarly fraught with danger.  Glasses are a big part of what I look like when I imagine myself.  If you haven't figured it out yet, I'm a fan.  Sure, there are downsides:  they slide down my nose at the first hint of perspiration (this translates as anywhere from 20 to 100 times a day depending on the season), they fog up when I come in from the cold, they get smudged even though I'm sure I'm not touching them, and then there's the haircut problem.

The first thing that happens when I sit down in the spinny chair to get a haircut is that they put a superhero cape on me but backwards.  That part is cool.  Then they make me take off my glasses.  This means that I never, ever get to see anything other than the Before and the After.  So, I must trust the person wielding the scissors completely - I have no chance of knowing after I've told them what I want if they've gone rogue.

Today I discovered a new reason why I wish I wasn't a Spectacled-American on haircut day.  I've been going to the same two people for haircuts for the last several years.  One of them is a hairdresser with an in-house chair massage person who is 2 hours away from my house and the other is a no-frills barber a mere 2 minutes away from my house.  I went to the barber today for probably the 10th time.  Thanks to this no-glasses-during-haircuts thing, it took until the 10th visit to realize that my barber is missing an entire finger.  Damn you, nearsightedness!  All this time I had a mental image of what was transpiring around my head and it was only 90% correct.

I might have to add haircuts to the list of contact-lens-necessary activities.  For all I know my other hairdresser might have an eye patch.  Or only one ear.  Or a mime performing in the background.  ANYTHING could be happening during my haircuts.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

It's Elementary, Right? Right?

They are showing a new series on PBS called "Sherlock".  It's a re-imagining of the Sherlock Holmes stories that takes place in modern day London.  Sherlock is a self-admitted high-functioning sociopath and Dr. Watson is a veteran of Afghanistan with a psychosomatic limp.

Based on hearing good things about the show, I set up a series recording on the DVR.  The HD channel, of course.  When we started to watch the first episode, we noticed that the show had a weird feature in the form of a narrator.  Narration is not itself strange but this woman was thorough.  She told us everything that was going on to an exhaustive level of detail.  I thought it was a little annoying but, hey, I figured it was their schtick.  Huppy, on the other hand, couldn't stand it and stopped watching.  I started looking on message boards to see if anyone else found the narration to be a little overwhelming.  Apparently not because there was no mention of it anywhere.  I found this to be puzzling since anyone who has spent any time on the interwebs knows that everything is mentioned at least once.  Everything.  Since we definitely weren't hallucinating her, I realized that she must be a service provided for the visually impaired.  OK, cool.  I'm sure it was just a mixup but I recorded the next episode on both channels (HD and SD) just in case.  The narrator was present again when we started the show but when we switched to the SD version she was gone.  The episode was much easier to watch without all the extra nattering.

Now, I'm glad they have these services for the visually impaired, I really am.  But am I a total jerk to think maybe it's not necessary to for them to do so on the high definition version?