Friday, December 31, 2010


ive said it before, and ill say it again... i love new years eve.

not because im into the parties, the countdown, or dick clark, but because i really like starting over, making goals, and checking things off of lists (in no particular order or sequence).

last year my two main goals were these:

1. graduate
2. refrain from dating tools/jerks/morons

IM REALLY PLEASED TO REPORT (for the 368th time) that I DID GRADUATE and this will be the first year of my adult life that i am not a student, and the first time in five years i wont have the pursuit of a ph.d hanging over my tiny head.


im less pleased to report, but not necessarily surprised to note, that i am still single, unfortunately not because i refrained from dating tools/jerks/morons but mostly on account of my failure to avoid the tools/jerks/morons OH and wimps.

well, this year i am equipped with a book i bought that is suppose to help me avoid said tools/jerks/morons/wimps (I BOUGHT A SELF-HELP BOOK HILARIOUSSSSSS) so maybe 2011 will be better for me on that front.

BEFORE I LIST MY NEW RESOLUTIONS, here is a list of things that are not on my resolutions list:
less diet coke
fewer solo photo booth sessions

thus, although i will probably have fewer (comical) stories to tell about my dating life, you can still expect me to post pictures of myself, and talk about mass diet coke consumption. SOMETIMES consistency is nice, huh?

alright, so in 2011 i think i want to try out swimming, being a better professor, get a few publications in major journals and vacuuming more often.

this list seems pretty lame, but 2010 was really tiring, so i think i am going to take it easy this year.

HAPPY 2011!!!! and remember, its good to have goals. even just a few. or one sad goal:

Monday, December 27, 2010

Sunday, December 19, 2010


once i rose about this noise and confusion.
just to get a glimpse beyond this illusion.
i was soaring ever higher.
but i flew too hiiiiiigh.

my glasses broke. just like a real nerd's glasses might break.

which may or may not have anything to do with the band kansas, and carry on my wayward son.

Monday, December 13, 2010


i did it.

i filed my dissertation. i am OFFICIALLY finished with my ph.d.


if i wasnt so exhausted i would be really really excited.

in the moments after i filed i did a few things that might warrant a ph.d. renege.

for example, right after i filed i went to mario and alisa's and after they congratulated me, i noticed a bag of fortune cookies on the counter. alisa had recently been to SF and so i dug in. i pick up a vanilla cookie and a chocolate cookie. i cracked the vanilla, read my fortune (you will soon be honored by someone you respect) and scarfed. i then cracked the chocolate one. the fortune was so out of reach, folded and wedged in one half of the cookie, so i thought, i guess the knowledge of my fate will have to wait a second..

then, somehow, possibly distracted by my conversation with al and m, i looked down into my hands to see that i had eaten the chocolate cookie... and its inner wisdom. I ATE THE FORTUNE.

yikes. here's to more sleep and better days, to come.


Thursday, December 9, 2010




shower pity upon me!!!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

all i want for christmas... this stuff.

sonicare electric toothbrush. BEHOLD ITS POWER:

the dyson d-23 canister vacuum. it looks like a small puppy.

a pair of close-toed platform heels for church. the higher the heel, the closer to God:

new toms. my other ones are sparkly and not always appropriate. plus the glitter is starting to be rubbed off cos apparently i waalk like a moron. also, they are starting to smell. ha/gross. these are the botas:

addendum: I am going to cancel my cable. thus i could use a few seasons of southpark, the most brilliant satirical comedy show ever made.

and last... peace, love and happiness. duh:

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

shoot screen

OMFGAHHHH i know that this isnt new to any of YOU but did you know (if you have a mac) you can take screen shots? yea, man. just pictures of whatever you want on your screen. the magic keys are command + shift + 4.


screen shotttttssss!!!

i love you, shots of my screen. xoxo gg

Monday, November 22, 2010

fall play list

my (varied) fall play list...

laughing with, regina spektor
sparks, coldplay
crossfire, brandon flowers
marry you, bruno mars
buzzin', MANN
forget you, cee lo
hot toddy, usher ft. jay z
when it rains, paramore
dark fantasy, kanye west
runaway, kanye west
love and some verses, iron and wine
rhythm of love, plain white tees
fancy, drake ft. T.I.
they say, common ft. john legend & kanye west
white daisy passing, rocky votolato

kanye at 2010 VMAs

Saturday, November 13, 2010

facebook IMPROV

last thursday, pal shauna and i made some time to go to UCB los angeles, and check out an improv show called "facebook."

how the show works is that the cast selects an audience member randomly, to get interviewed. they use facebook to spark conversation, and they ask the audience member about their profile, pictures, comments and statuses. they then use that info to form improvised comedy scenes based entirely on the interview/facebook.

the cast includes some funny guys i had already seen on the internet tv show, shutter bugs, paul scheer and rob huebel.

sounds cool, huh?

well, lucky for me, i was randomly picked from the audience!

this is me being interviewed by paul scheer. im wearing sparkly gold TOMS if anyone is confused (AMAZED!) by my footwear.

they did a pretty fantastic job making fun of my tendency to speak in "meows," but mostly it was just hilarious. i loved it.

definitely gotta go back to UCB soon.


my friend dave. lookin good.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Thursday, November 4, 2010


i am going to idaho this weekend to see my mom and dad, and extended family. its been YEARS, since i have seen a cousin. ANY cousin.

but i am especially excited cos i finally get to meet THIS BABY BOO!! my cousin's first kiddo, bodie jane.

BODIE, we are going to be best friends.

Monday, November 1, 2010

i love goldfishes cos theyre so delicious...

happy halloween!

ITS BEEN A FUN WEEKEND. my pal shauna came up with a great costume idea, and that is what you see, HERE. shauna, myself and lindsey are the cutest goldfish you ever did see.


x mer

Saturday, October 30, 2010

sufjan elation

last weekend i was able to see sufjan stevens at the wiltern in hollywood. if you dont know sufjan stevens, FIGURE IT OUT. especially if you like banjos, keyboards, and psychedelic folk rock. its a thing.

this was the best show i have ever seen, to date. good music, good seats, good company. plus girls dressed like robots dancing and a laser show set to crazy stop motion art. yep! i love la.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

this is a long post about politics, media and YOUR MOM.

has anyone else noticed MSNBC's new slogan? lean forward. its good cos its political and related to elections, in the sense that we talk about states as either leaning democrat or republican, and its honest (i think) in that perhaps they are addressing their tendency to be more liberal. maybe i am giving them too much credit with the new tag, but i dig it.

so given that introduction, YES I WATCH MSNBC. well, relative to other americans, or especially professors of political communication, i probably do not watch enough news, in general. but the truth of it is, that if i have more than 30 minutes of free time i am going to take a nap. if i am cleaning my house THEN i am going to turn on the news. and ill turn it up! loud. poor neighbors.

well, this post isnt about my neighbors (who i have yet to see, even having lived here 9 weeks) but instead about something keith olbermann said the other night on countdown. with the striking indignation i have come to expect from the former sportscaster he made light of something that former secretary of state, donald rumsfeld, recently said. lets talk about it.

the context is not the crux what i want this post to be about, but a little background is necessary...

rememeber the wikileaks? the illegal disclosure of 76,900 (others estimate over 400,000) reports on the US war on the Taliban/in Iraq/Afghanistan. these secrets were exposed by army private bradly manning, or "bradass87," (read: clever). could this kid possibly know what we was getting himself into? eesh.

anyways, so yes. the wikileaks largely confirmed what most of us already knew about the death toll and the torture going on in Iraq...its perverse and pervasive.

for people like olbermann (an outspoken political commentator criticizing the war in iraq and our continued presence in the middle east) the wikileaks provide what should be the nail in the coffin... the administration lied to get us into iraq, and continues to lie everyday about the civilian death toll in iraq and afghanistan. ergo, lets bolt.

in response to accusations about lies regarding the death toll, donald rumsfeld came forward this week and said:

Interestingly, all of the exaggerations seem to be on one side. It isn`t as though there simply have been a series of random errors on both sides of the issues. On the contrary, the steady stream of errors all seem to be in -- of a nature to inflame the situation and to give heart to the terrorists and to discourage those who hope for success in Iraq.

HERE COMES SNARKY INDIGNIATION. olbermann interpreted this to say that rumsfeld is blaming the media. for what is NOT entirely made clear by olbermann in the segment, but the fact that keith found it laughable that the media could be responsible for anything is what has had me reeling today...AS IF THE MEDIA ARE SOME PATRON SAINT INCAPABLE OF HAVING ANY SORT OF (NEGATIVE) IMPACT.

and now to my larger point... the effects of the media are in fact immense.

although normatively we expect the media to perform functions such as being a watch dog, providing a civic forum, and provide for mobilization, this is not what we empirically observe.
instead of performing these functions, the media tend to focus on political personalities, embarrassing gaffes, and sex scandals.

speaking of political "gaffes"...

for anyone that doesn't know, the inspiration for my dissertation largely stemmed from my dissatisfaction with the association of john kerry as a flip flopper for those terrible words he strew (strung?) together to form this sentence:
I actually did vote for the $87 billion before I voted against it.

like many americans, and senators--liberal and otherwise--senator kerry authorized our going to war with iraq in 2003 by voting to allocate funds for war. when it became clear that perhaps our intentions for going into iraq were either unfounded, or maybe just because the war became unpopular, kerry did not vote to authorize the funds the second time the bill was on the floor of the senate. that means that yes, kerry approved the funding of a war in 2003... assessed situations (either on the ground in iraq, or public opinion polls, im not going with one or the other) and then did not approve the funding the second time.

yet instead of suggesting he changed his mind in light of new information, JOHN KERRY WAS NOW KNOWN AS A FLIP FLOPPER.
omh you might as well tattoo lindsey lohan on your head, you are almost as unpopular.
he was ruined. here are some other campaigns just from the last 10 years ruined by the showcasing of similar gaffes that need no background:
sarah palin (Vladimir Putin likes to rear his head and fly over Alaskan airspace)
howard dean (ay-YEAH!!)
george allen (macaca)

sex scandals that also need no introduction?
larry craig (current senator idaho) and his solicitation for sex in a minnesota bathroom
mark sanford (current governor of south carolina who went hiking on the Appalachian Trail, code for lover in argentina)
elliot spitzer (former NY gov caught with a prostitute).
interestingly, those mixed up in sex scandals are much more likely to bounce back, and see political life again. or at least hold on to their current positions, in the case of sanford and craig. spitzer i hear, is getting his own tv show. GREAT.

why am i writing all of this (at 1 am). well, i am a speaking tomorrow at the pasadena senior center, and the topic is THE MEDIA and the current election... and all i can think about is the polarizing effects, dumbing down, and general annoyance i have toward the whole establishment. do you think seniors would want to just watch this all afternoon? i know i could.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

paired synonyms

i love lawyers. they are smart, usually dress well, and largely respect laws and authority, which i can get behind.


cease and desist
free and clear
give and bequeath
heirs and assigns
last will and testament
revoke and cancel
to have and to hold


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

book review: Personality and the Foundations of Political Behavior

a cleaner version of this review is to appear in the april 2011 journal of politics. but i thought i would copy and paste the review here in case other pol psychs want to get an idea of what this book has to offer.

Title: Personality and the Foundations of Political Behavior by Jeffery J. Mondak (Cambridge University Press, 2010)

The field of political behavior may be in for a change in the wake of Jeffery Mondak’s latest book, Personality and the Foundations of Political Behavior. In his book, Mondak presents a convincing argument in favor of incorporating measures of personality into current behavioralist approaches as a means to provide the sub-discipline with a firm foundation and to advance the development of more elaborate and powerful theories. Furthermore, using empirical analysis, Mondak demonstrates that personality traits can help us explain important political behaviors such as where Americans get their news, with what political party we most strongly identify and how citizens participate in the political process.
Contrary to mainstream research on political behavior, Mondak rethinks the accepted belief that political behaviors depend on long-standing predispositions as shaped by social and political environments. He argues that those behaviors are influenced by not only environmental factors, but also biological factors, such as personality traits, which are defined as innate, enduring, and observable. According to his approach, political behaviors are the outcome of environmental influences, as well as variables that predate encounters with environmental influences and also interact with them.
The immediate hurdle to incorporating personality measures into political behavior research is addressed forthright, as Mondak focuses directly on the debate surrounding measurement issues. As Mondak carefully outlines, the history of personality research in political science has been hampered by an ad hoc approach since the early 1900s with no consensus on a theoretical framework. This ad hoc approach has led to fractured analysis with regard to personality influences, and with no means of collaboration or corroboration. To overcome this hurdle, Mondak prescribes a commitment to the “five-factor” model, or the Big Five, for measuring personality traits. The Big Five is a viable taxonomy of traits that is comprehensive, reliable, parsimonious, and uses a limited number of dimensions. The Big Five model focuses on five core trait dimensions: Openness to Experience, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism.
Incorporating personality into studies of political behavior has intuitive appeal. Indeed, we all, in some degree or another, have a personality and we experience others’ personalities on a regular basis. We know personality matters a great deal to understanding others, and if prodded, how these characteristics are important to predicting our behaviors, including those that are political in nature. Yet perhaps this apparent face validity has negated proper investigation. As Mondak notes, the probable link between personality and political behavior “has not produced a corresponding flurry of empirical research” (11). Mondak’s review of and recommendation for the Big Five serves as a prescription for the limited research incorporating measures of personality.
Up until chapter three the book has dealt with measurement issues, such as conceptualizing and operationalizing personality traits. In the next three chapters Mondak incorporates personality traits into empirical analyses of political behaviors such as the acquisition of political information, political attitudes, and political participation to investigate whether variance in personality traits leads to observable patterns of influence.
In chapter 4 Mondak focuses our attention on the potential impact of personality traits on political information, broadly defined as media use, political discussion, political attentiveness, political knowledge and opinionation. For instance, we might intuitively gather that those more open to experience would be more likely to discuss politics, and with a more diverse social network. Chapter 5 focuses on the impact of personality on internal and external efficacy, political ideology, partisanship, and policy attitudes on issues such as the War in Iraq, and abortion. Last, in chapter 6 Mondak turns his attention to the dynamics of participation. This is a particularly effective way to evaluate the added impact of personality, as data on participation are quite rich.
With such a thorough and concise investigating within the pages of Mondak’s book, the next hurdle is to refrain from dusting off our hands, and assuming that the work is finished. Certainly Mondak’s analysis seems to run the gamut of political behaviors, from participation to attitude formation. Yet as the concluding chapter makes clear, there is still plenty of work to be done such as cross-national work, analysis of personality as a mediating variable, and construction of hypotheses that consider the conditional effects of traits.
In order to spur widespread incorporation of personality measures into studies of political behavior it will require that this approach become universally adopted as a new standard, by additional prominent political behavioralists. Surely, Mondak understands that his new agenda, mainly to complement current studies of political behavior with personality measures, will require immense work and sacrifice from other scholars.
To his credit, Mondak recognizes that the incorporation of his agenda is no small feat. Yet, if the results were not enough, he is convincing in his argument of its necessity. I agree with Mondak, in that, we are remiss if our accounts of individual-level political behavior continue to assume behaviors begin and end with factors rooted in today’s information environment. If we ignore biological factors that predate our exposure to particular environments we are missing a very important piece to the puzzle. Personality and the Foundations of Political Behavior is a powerful argument for just such a critical understanding of individual-level behavior. Beyond just criticizing current theories, Mondak presents practical and theoretically sound means to achieve more clarity in the study of political behavior. Last, by extending our causal path, our research will be richer and more comprehensive, and our field will continue to develop move forward.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

cool down.

here is a list of things i used to think were cool:

(1) i used to think IT WAS SO COOOOL when the same song was playing on two different radio stations, at the same moment. i would even call my friends when this would happen, i thought it was so cool. turns out? not that cool. you see, grown up meredith, most radio stations only play the same 5 songs over and over again. not a lot of coincidences there, merebear.

(2) what music did i think was cool? hanson. mmbop? mmbetchya. i liked hanson so much that i would take my neighbors teeny bop mags (i would never dare ask my mom to buy me one of those) when she was finished with them, and cut them to pieces in order to get all the pics of the hanson brothers (sans isaac, sorry dude, yur wack). my best friend in high school, kimberlee, and i took her glow in the dark stars (you remember using those to decorate the walls in your room??) and spelling out an ENORMOUS letter "Z" in glow stars above her bed (Z is for the youngest hanson, zac, duh).

interestingly, when working for the associated press television news station in London in 2004 i had the opportunity to interview the hanson kiddos and hang out with them back stage (yes they were (and are!!) still touring), and live out my childhood fantasy of hanging out with the brothers. well, turns out, isaac really likes showing off his impersonations of kermit the frog and austin powers, so much beyond that was out of reach. although taylor did tell me "you have nice teeth for being english." "thanks. did you also notice i have an american accent?" nice kids.

(3) the place i bought my clothes was cool. 5*7*9. do you all remember this clothing store? me too. this is where i would buy my jncos. did you know "jcno" stands for "judge none choose one." pretty deep for wide leg raver denim.

(4) trolls. those were cool. i didnt own very many. maybe like 3.

but the girl down the street had the troll jackpot! she had three sisters, so their cumulative trolls was intense. we would play "trolls" for at least 4 hours at a time. looking back, i have no idea how or why.

(5) last, my favorite band. MxPx. MxPx stood for Magnified Plaid. the "x's" represent the periods to abbreviate their longgggg (lame) name. they eventually just became "mxpx." well, sure, they were my favorite band. with lines like this how could a high school girl not get behind them?

want someone to love
a girl that when i think of
will put a smile on my face
i want to hold her hand
want her to understand
there's got to be a better place
than this world cause this
is the best time of our lives

alright meredith. so you are (WERE) a sap for sissy punk. keep it to yourself! ...well, i did NOT. for those of you who read this blog and are not members of the LDS church, in high school we attend church/sunday-school-like classes during the school week, and are asked to present devotionals. essentially a very short spiritual thought to start off the class. well, i was pretty into mxpx, and needless to say, moved by them on a regular basis. SO WHAT I DID IS USE AN MXPX SONG AS A DEVOTIONAL. here it is, ya'll:

There's nothing quite like being sure of
What's inside your heart
It's mostly simple but not so easy
To know just where to start

Today didn't have to be this way
Tomorrow is another day
Another chance to make things right
A chance to make sense of last night

A chance to fully live your life

i can see how maybe this song could be linked to the repentance process, so i suppose i should say good effort, middle school mere. but these things, cumulatively, that i used to think were cool, are clearly not. at all. thank goodness for teasing and becoming a grown up, etc etc.

xoxo gg

Monday, October 4, 2010

election season...

its october, folks. less than a month to study up on your propositions and people running for office.

in case you missed this, the following political ad IS REAL.


dan finelli is running for congress in FL, against the first term incumbent, alan grayson. alan grayson is a former DC circuit court of appeals clerk, for both scalia and ginsberg, and graduated from harvard law. i really like him. he gets flack sometime for being "crazy" and "liberal" but next to guys like finelli he is altogether reasonable.

dan finelli is one a several Tea Party candidates that surprisingly won their states primary, even without GOP establishment support. by establishment, of course, i mean the republican party. the republican party, for instance, did not suppport christine odonnell who in 1990 appeared on Bill Maher's "Politically Incorrect" and admitted to "dabbling in witchcraft."

i dont know what to think of that. but i do know her response to the media attention, 20 years later, was a bad idea. see the following ad, where she begins "I am not a witch."

I AM NOT A WITCH. this is real. this is not an SNL skit, or something from the daily show. this is a real, potential member of our US Congress saying "i am not a witch," with pure sincerity.

sure, you can say its not fair that the media has jumped on the 1990 witch comment, leaving her no choice but to respond. yet there is NO WAY karl rove had anything to do with that ad; it is wholly embarrassing, and does not help her cause.

but the sad fact for both republicans and democrats is that tea party money has in fact gone to support candidates like christine odonnell who do not represent most (sane) republicans. i understand that conservatives are working off the steam provided by tea parties (and their money) but cant we agree that candidates like christine odonnell (and joe miller Alaska, sharron angle NV, alan west FL) are not the answer. oh, dan maes, too, running for governor in CO. He called the Denver bike-sharing program a socialist plot organized by the U.N.

i know many people smarter than i am predict a big turn over in november, and democrats will lose a lot of seats. but i dont necessarily think democrats are in a lot of trouble this election more worried about the legislative branch, as a whole. perhaps i should celebrate what is arguably a third party movement, possibly bringing alternative perspectives to washington. but i just wish the third party wasn't being represented by the people mentioned, above.

if youre interested, here are 10 tea party candidates to watch, from

Saturday, October 2, 2010

history of hip hop

justin timberlake was on jimmy fallon last week and they put together what is the greatest 4 minutes of late night television ive seen in a while. its amazing how well jt and jimmy can mimic rap greats like eminem and notorious b.i.g. you gotta check this, yo..

Thursday, September 30, 2010

late night (early morning) ruminations. . .

words i overuse when lecturing:
conception, conceptualize, conceptualization

i'd rather buy a new printer than a new ink cartridge.

when i was a kid i thought "anon." was a really well quoted man/woman.

marbury v. madison (1803). yea, i get the significance (judicial review) but the actual details, ARE YOU KIDDING ME? so a letter didnt get delivered. is this really going to determine whether or not i succeed as a first-year american government professor? get a LIFE marbury, you blew it.

that's enough, lifehouse.

i know that disney is just another corporation, teaching our young girls that only princes/john smith can save us, and apparently slipping phallic images onto the covers of their videos/dvds, but man, it really is the happiest place on earth. the air smells like sugar and fireworks.

xoxo gg

Friday, September 24, 2010

learn from my mistakes.

a lot of people REALLY hate when their friends mistake "there," "their" and "they're." whereas i hate people that hate that mistake cos if theyre still making that mistake over the age of 18 theyre not my friend. so its not really an issue for me.

but please dont confuse me for a grammaticary elitist (real thing, yo!). in fact, if i have conveyed anything in my last post its that i need to hire a personal editor.

but cut me some slack. these arent typos i am making in a facebook post (though im sure i have loads of those). these are mistakes found in my dissertation...which is over 100 pages, that have been written over the course of an entire year. it can be difficult to stay consistent over the course of an entire year. if youll remember from two posts ago, i had 4 different boyfriends in the span of the last year. INDEED if there is anything i have learned about myself lately its that i am not consistent...which is potentially a consistency?

with that, you should learn from my mistakes. here are some of them:

its "home in." not hone. you hone a knife. you "home in" on something when you want to concentrate more closely.

whereas. one word, all the time. seems simple, but if you speak in your mind as you type, a lot of the time it can come out on the screen as two words. dissertation advisors HATE that.

thus (comma). if youre going to say thus, say it right. with a comma. one time, to save some minutes, i finished a psych paper and used the "find and replace" tool in word. fine, you can do that. but not if the paper is on the effect of emotions SUCH AS enTHUSiasm on political behavior. COS, WELL, then you'll have your professors scratching their heads when they read "enthus,iasm".

aforementioned, heretofore, and therefore will make academics regret ever letting you into their field. so just dont do it.

and, last, its "LAST." not "lastly." dont say lastly.

k, i hope you can learn from my mistakes. as for the bigger mistakes in life, im on a mission to make fewer of those, too.

xoxo gossipgirl

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


its a really nice day today in la.

but, like, inside my head its nothing but cah-ray-zeeeee.

first, look at me. its 5pm, and i have huge circles under my eyes. and i never get circles. i have good genes, remember?!?

the craziness began when i got an email from my dissertation advisor (whom you all know from reading this blog i love and adore--different languages = different words). BUT it was an untimely incredibly thorough review of my dissertation. bc he is brilliant and as we say, WWBBD, the comments were entirely relevant. but i was ready to take a break from my diss. and maybe even be entirely finished! alas, NO WAY, mere.

i thought today i would write the book review for a politics journal for a new book on personality and politics. the review is due in a week and i havent started the book yet. so that is semi stressing me out.

then my other diss advisor is writing my letters of rec bc all the while i am still applying for tenure track political science faculty jobs, and need to get applications out by september 30th. so he is asking for my CV etc, to (hopefully) write me a good letter, and i get, in my email, an edited version of my CV! ha. turns out everything i do needs to be edited. forever. and non stop.

and tomorrow i have three classes to prepare for. monday was a weak day, so i need to be a bit more prepared for tomorrow, but turns out all i can do is whine about all this stuff, and subsequently do nothing about any of it.

so the highlight of my day was at the gas station where a homeless man came up to me and said:

like wine, you fine.

thanks, dude. i needed that.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

anniversary 1 rant stream of consciousness

this month marks the one year anniversary of my blog, snappppp.

i dont think it would be a huuuuge exaggeration to say its been one of the most difficult, and yet BEST september to september years. im exceptionally happy today, and with the past 12 months. that feels excellent to say (did you notice all the big "e" words??).

in just the past year i have been to D.C. twice to present nano and then later my dissertation, hung out in toronto and SF with other political scientists, worked on handfuls of articles, been rejected by 2 academic journals, given one "best conference paper" award, been interviewed by 3 exceptional colleges for prof jobs, written a dissertation (thats a book, folks), took an excursion to SB with ma' crew for one incredible graduation celebration, moved twice, broken up four times, and crashed one car. ive gotten 2 speeding tickets, made tens of parking violations, made hundreds of friends, and added at least 12 ugly doll to my collection. YES IT HAS BEEN A BUSY, BUT GOOD YEAR.

here is to another exceptionally excellent and exciting one.

Friday, September 10, 2010

three ridiculous things

(1) wheel of fortune.

do the contestants think vanna is deaf? "E!!! CAN I BUY AN E!!?!!" x 1248000 decibels.

(2) bachelor pad

its like lord of the flies, but good looking adults. and death = ride home in a limo.

(3) this kid

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


i think this is a nice song.

This is how it works
It feels a little worse
Than when we drove our hearse
Right through that screaming crowd

While laughing up a storm
Until we were just bone
Until it got so warm
That none of us could sleep

And all the styrofoam
Began to melt away
We tried to find some worms
To aid in the decay

But none of them were home
Inside their catacomb
A million ancient bees
Began to sting our knees

While we were on our knees
Praying that disease
Would leave the ones we love
And never come again

On the radio
We heard November Rain
That solo's really long
But it's a pretty song
We listened to it twice
'Cause the DJ was asleep

This is how it works
You're young until you're not
You love until you don't
You try until you can't

You laugh until you cry
You cry until you laugh
And everyone must breathe
Until their dying breath

No, this is how it works
You peer inside yourself
You take the things you like
And try to love the things you took

And then you take that love you made
And stick it into some
Someone else's heart
Pumping someone else's blood

And walking arm in arm
You hope it don't get harmed
But even if it does
You'll just do it all again

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

day one

today is/was my first day on campus.

parking available. VICTORY.

admin asst is *not nice* when i walk in...

"can i help you?" (that doesnt sound so bad when i type it...)
"im the new hire meredith"
"oh!!! im sorry, you looked like a student!"

my office phone DOES NOT have speaker phone. wtf?! how am i suppose to multi task?

this copy room is a gold mine! i am considering printing out syllabi on photo paper. FTW!


Thursday, August 26, 2010

today i worked out


Friday, August 20, 2010

. . .

just some things ive been ruminating about in the last few days. . .

i think the level of care Prius drivers take toward the environment is inversely related to the amount of care they feel toward pedestrians/other drivers. "I SUPER LOVE THE ENVIRONMENT!! ..get out of my way person crossing the street, im getting really great gas milage!." granted, many of these toyotas may be coasting on account of their own will (see colossal toyota brake recall), but i think the more Prius drivers think they are saving the world the less they want other drivers/people in it.

wtf will all these beer companies trying to be punny, etc. keith stone aka keystone, and thirst inning, aka budweiser's "third" inning. very clever, guys/gals. keep it coming.

where have all the cowboy's gone?

and lastly, i am about to file my dissertation, and i am realizing its a bittersweet ordeal. the thought of freedom from its grip is invigorating, but now what is my excuse for staying home on a saturday night?? MLIA.

Monday, August 9, 2010

[[ 90210 ]]

i moved.

two times in 2 months.

"they" say moving is one of the more stressful things you'll experience in your life, just barely behind a divorce. although my moves are not quite on the scale of life changing, etc, im going to say that it was tiring to boot, and i feel like someone slipped something into my diet coke.

every thing i packed i minded that i would eventually have to unpack. this was a really important exercise. i ended up giving up a lot of stuff as a result. i hope someone at deseret industries appreciates my feather mattress topper and blue puma track jacket from 1999.

since moving here i have gotten two warning tickets left on my car for not having a current registration tab. really? THANKS GOVERNMENT!!

as a result of the past events re: this illusive, heck ELUSIVE too, registration i made an appointment with the DMV to clear this all up. my appointment is for August 16th; the DMV is SOOO popular. ive decided to leave a note on my car with my appointment with the DMV showing so the cops can save ticket paper. its shiny and its color; that cannot be cheap.

since moving ive built my bed with my own hands,

gone grocery shopping,

and bought new "china".

i love my new home!

now to just get a parking permit and updated registration...

Saturday, August 7, 2010

comfy couch

this is my new couch.

you might recognize it from such popular shows as "scrubs"

or "ugly dolls meet and sit"

its the comfiest couch in the WHOLE WORLD.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

{ the fuzz }

recently i got a new car, remember? well, i love him, but i have yet to get my registration and sticker update from the DMV. the volvo dealership said it would take 6-8 weeks. its now week 7, so i just hope 6-8 was an accurate guess.

ANYWAYS, ive been pulled over a total of three times (twice in one day!) since getting my new car because my registration is expired. duh. of course i dont get tickets because if you buy a car you have 90 days to update it... but like, has technology not yet progressed to the point that officers and the DMV can communicate, perhaps with a small "notes" section associated with my license plate saying something like "registration in transit" or something like that?

i worked at a waterpark in high school, and if a person tried to sneak in a friend, or forgot his/her/hes/hir pass a few times, we would make a note in the notes section so that when a different employee went to run his/shmer season pass he/she/shis would know just what kind of hoodlum he/she was dealing with. im not saying officers should write journal entries each time i get pulled over, but COME ON GUYS, THREE TIMES FOR THE SAME INFRACTION (is this an infraction? im not a lawyer, okay) THAT ISNT EVEN MY FAULT?! im really getting numb to flashing red and blue lights. aren't they suppose to scare me? psh.

ps i dont hate cops. JUST GIMME MY REGISTRATION, YO!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

ferris bueller

"life moves pretty fast. you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." iconic words from an iconic character.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

. . .

some things ive been ruminating over the last few days . . .

recently sarah palin tweeted (and previously said) the word refudiate. which i can only imagine is a mix up of refute and repudiate. thats interesting cos both refute and repudiate would have done the job (in both cases she was calling on groups to renounce statements said by members). yet by combining the 2 words that would have done a fine job of making her point she pretty much made a fool out her sef. i know she gets a lot of really bad press so i feel bad for her, but i wish she would go away.

i pride myself on being a scavenger. my bookshelf was once christy moe's, my bedside table belonged to marf, and my bed frame was a hand me down from my roommate in SB, caroline. that being said, i have no problem losing phones, crashing cars and paying for an inordinate number of parking tickets. i just wish my frugality would extend beyond furniture.

why am i the only one in my house who uses the medicine cabinet?

i really want to see the other guys. i think mark walhberg is great in comedies.

and lastly here are some things i am going do to as soon as i file my dissertation:
go outside
listen to my queue of SCIAM podcasts
read a newspaper
bake cookies
play text twist

Sunday, July 18, 2010

on why...

i dont carry a purse...

a purse is basically a garbage sack women carry around on their shoulders.

need (anecdotal) evidence?

today i decided to take a purse to church. usually i just carry a clutch (which can be seen, buried, in the image, below).

in just about 5 hours the purse accumulated a lot of things that otherwise would not have gone into my space-deficient clutch.

this is why i dont normally carry a purse.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

cant miss 2.0

about 3 months ago i made a list of my top five favorite things, slash cant misses, and must haves (from a strictly material standpoint). tonight i did it, again cos i love lists. here is my cant miss list for the week of july 4th (note: "freedom" is not on the list because its immaterial. and i am a material girl):

1. diet coke.

like duh.

2. sandstone soap from lush

not only does this smell like the mutha dang greatest thing in the world, the sand (obviously) exfoliates. nothing i love more than rubbing hard sand against my skin. frealz.

3. specialized bike frame

do you want to win stage 8 of the 2010 tour de france? ...thats what i thought.

4. hitched floral trenchcoat from topshop

this is not yet mine, but it should be. ps i frequented topshop when i lived in london, though couldnt afford much... but what i did buy (in 2005) i still wear. topshop, you timeless!

5. motorola E815

isnt she beautiful? since losing my blackberry i have yet to get a new phone. this baby right here is getting me through and letting me text back those of you who text me. i couldnt break this phone if i tried.

go! shop! you need this stuff! plus, obama has predicted an economic BOOM in the coming months, and we dont want him to be wrong, SO CONSUME, ya'll!!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

:: lets go to the mall ::

canada. shopping. and robots. do i really need to do any more convincing to get you to watch this video?

Saturday, July 3, 2010


LAST WEEKEND i was able to go to mccall idaho to see my childhood bestfriend, kate, marry her beau, drew. it was a lovely wedding, in a beautiful setting, and was tons of fun.

but this was the 5th wedding for which ive been a bridesmaid... i know its not quite at the level of that loser katherine heigl (see 27 dresses), but i feel like 5 is a lot (also, unlike katherine heigl, no one ever made me wear feathers, etc...see below...)

although being a bridesmaid 5 times is a butt load, im not mad about it, at all. the truth is, i think being apart of friends' weddings is like the ultimate expression of love from both sides- they want you to be in their pictures that they will hang up around their house, and show their grand children 40 years later-and you are willing to stop your life for a few days to let them know that you love them back, and will try and look extra pretty for the pics that will eventually be hung in their home. its a nice little symbiosis of love.

so here i will pay homage to the 5 weddings i have been in since 2005....

2010 Kate and Drew Coyle, McCall, Id
met kate in middle school when she moved frm TX to idaho; def wanted her in my clique... but told her we already had a "katie" and shes been "kate" ever since. :)

2008 Kirby and Andrew Walker, Rupert, Id
kirby is my darling cousin, and i love her. her and andrew just had their first baby, a girl! bodie jane! they make cute kids.

2007 Jenn and Kyle TImmerman, SLC, Ut
I met both jenn and kyle at purdue. jenn and i survived grad school together; i would have died without her. they are expecting baby boy Max, any day, now!

2006 Dr. Sara Swoboda and Scott Falconer, Boise, Id
Sara has been my best friend since 6th grade. i love her, shes amazing. and she is an MD in Seattle, so shes wicked smart, too.

2005 Beth and Chris Gagne, Denver, CO
beth and chris were my besties at Whittier College. I actually had a huge crush on Chris when i was a silly freshman. Glad one of my friends snagged him.