Thursday, January 6, 2011

Holy cow I've fallen off the wagon here. I could use the holidays as my excuse but really, I suspect that Bejeweled Blitz is to blame here. It's a terribly addictive Facebook game that I've started playing the last couple weeks, and it's preventing me from being any kind of productive (I meant to read several books over break, for example, but have only managed to complete one). I've hardly written a word anywhere, despite my goal to keep up and fill up the journal I started in creativity class.

Well, I guess I'll try to get back on track by getting down some highlights from December.

Class ended, I flew to MI, and have been staying with Jake and his roommates. There are a total of six of us in the house, and despite there only being one bathroom, the arrangement works out quite well. Probably mostly because it's rare to have all six of us here at once, but also because everyone gets along pretty well. Aside from Jake, a couple of my best guy friends are here, which makes it even more fun.

The week before Christmas was largely spent accompanying friends on their last-minute Christmas shopping ventures (as well as completing my own). The holiday itself went pretty well; we managed to spend time with Jake's family and both sides of mine without any scheduling conflicts. Plus we got three delicious meals (one of which I acquired all the leftovers from, which was like a bonus gift). I feel like most of the gifts I gave were well-received. Most people seemed fairly conscious of the fact that there's only so much space in my suitcase, too. As it is, I'll still have to ship a box back separately (in part because of my book-buying addiction) but my parents have agreed to do that for me.

After the Christmas celebrations our friend Dan had a party at his apartment, complete with drum circle. I actually ended up playing (and drinking) more than anticipated, and it was quite fun. My wrists had bruises and my hands were sore for a couple days after, but I'd do it again.

I've been to see my favorite rockabilly act, Cash O'Riley, a couple times as well -- the second time he had the band with him (two other guys -- one plays lead guitar or harmonica and the other plays the upright bass, which I am a fan of). Next week he's promised to have CDs available, so hopefully he makes good on that. He's doing a tour within the next couple months which will bring him out to Baltimore with any luck. I gave him a list of potential venues a few weeks ago and he's having his agent contact them. I feel pretty privileged -- he's a cool guy, always takes time to talk to me and thank me for coming to the show, remembers my name and asked me how my first months in Baltimore were -- it'd be great to see him out east.

Jake finished his novel here about a week ago too. And I actually finished reading it on Tuesday. I don't really feel that I've been all that much help to him lately in editing and revision, as he has another, more experienced friend working on that, but he seems appreciative of the fact that I've offered what I could. Whether he'll use any of it I don't know yet.

I spent a day with Anna and Kelly just after Christmas; we had lunch together, did a little shopping, had dinner with Jeff and Cari (who actually both had a night off for once), then had a game night here at the house with Nick, Tif, Scott, and a couple of Nick's friends. Scott and I paired up for a game of Cranium, and it turns out we make a pretty good team -- we won.

The day before NYE I went to spend the day with my mom, grandma, and little sister. We also had lunch together, went to a used book/movie/music store, then to see my mom's new house. We returned to my grandma's for food and tea, then had an Elvis dance party in the basement, which evolved into an Elvis singing party, which evolved into... howling dogs? Probably the most I've laughed in a long time. And the most exercise I've had since being in MI.

NYE wasn't especially eventful, though Jake, Scott and I ended up going to three different parties. The first one had a lot of smoke and a lot of people I didn't know. It was kind of loud and I felt like I didn't have anything to talk about, even with the people who weren't already drunk. Several friends made appearances too, so we rang in the new year there then headed out. The second party -- my friend Peter's -- was pretty small (though there was some delicious spinach dip made by our friend Felicia) and we didn't stay long. The third was fairly late into the night; I'd guess we got there around 130 or 2. Jake and I played a game of euchre against Jason and Erica (two of the roommates) and won -- possibly partly because they'd had a lot more to drink than we had.

This past Monday Jake and I ventured down to John King's Used Books in Detroit. We spent nearly $50 each; I got a few books of poetry (and an abridged copy of Tolstoy's War and Peace by mistake -- I wanted the full text) among others and Jake bought just about ever Paul Theroux book they had. Both of us were in need of an extra bookshelf before this trip. There are worse things to be addicted to, though, haha. Jake was also kind enough to stop at Great Lakes Crossing and let me do a little other shopping, despite his distaste for malls. I tried to be considerate and only went into two or three stores (again partly due to my lack of suitcase space).

That mostly brings me up to date, I think. We'll see if I can start getting down some daily highlights in between Bejeweled binges from here on out.

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