Archive for September, 2009

Chill out, Tlālōc!

Posted in Uncategorized on September 29, 2009 by Cristina

Noooo!
NOT what I want to see when I look up the forecast. Absentmindedly, I lost my special umbrella at the JFK airport right before moving here and until this week, it hadn’t been a problem. But I knew the rain would eventually come and now that it’s here I want just one more week of sunshine so I can make it to the coast before winter. The Aztec god of rain, Tlālōc, usually requires child sacrifices but in lieu of that, I’ll just write a blog with my request that he calm the F down because our crops are doing A-OK on irrigation for now.
please! 
Por favor, una semana más de soledad y cielos claros para que pueda ir a la playa.

Back to school!

Posted in Uncategorized on September 28, 2009 by Cristina

dapper
As I return to the university life after a six-year detour, I find that many things have changed. Most notably, the level of technology that my students & I have to use in class; way more sophisticated than I’m accustomed to. Eeek! I also notice that during these first few days of class, everyone is really stepping up their fashion game, especially Mr. YellowSuit StripedShirt Man in the photo. Phenomenal!  But of all the surprises I’ve encountered returning to the world of brain-frolicking, the most disturbing is the absence of a decent coffee shop around campus. Blasphemy!

Hmmm, Chinese immersion?

Posted in Uncategorized on September 26, 2009 by Cristina

ballon rouge
I’ve been thinking of going ahead and getting a yearly membership at the Portland Art Museum so I can swing by anytime for free, it is right on campus, after all. Strolling around there might be a much-needed break from the mind-numbing Spanish Literature on my brain. I’d heard about the new exhibit, China Design Now, opening in October and thought it sounded pretty neat so when I saw a guy putting up all the paper lanterns in the bright-shiny-sun, I was sold. The setup looks so amazing (especially when the sun is super-bright) and the 1.3 billion people in China are surely doing really kick-ass things so I should probably just go explore their talent. There might not be too much else to do around here once the non-stop drizzle begins, so $55 seems like a pretty small price to pay for some eye-opening Chinese fun.

Hippiemorphosis

Posted in Uncategorized on September 24, 2009 by Cristina

prep

One night the week before leaving New York, I had a little self-consciousness moment in which I suddenly realized I was wearing tie-dye (albeit a lame amusement park shirt) and eating my home-made trail mix. This is a shirt that I’d wear in public with no bra on special hangover days and thoroughly embarrass my old roommate. I laughed at myself and thought it could be considered fun preparation for assimilating to their sanctuary here in Portland. Being a girl who refuses to give up carcinogenic antiperspirants, plucks eyebrows to avoid a sure-fire Frida look, and doesn’t care for the Grateful Dead, I’d like to think I’m not at a very high risk of turning into a harcore hippie. Ummm, so most slow metamorphoses are difficult to notice but today I looked down at my legs and exclaimed (out loud) that I hadn’t shaved them in a week. Not a huge deal, but during a week of short dresses and constant human interaction, it signals a baby step toward hippie-dom. If you find me wearing birkenstocks with socks, please buy me a pedicure and a mojito to drag me back to reality.  Truth, peace, love and tolerance! [no patchouli]

Four is a magic number!

Posted in Craziness on September 22, 2009 by Cristina

In most cities, street-traffic-related conversations feature four letter words but here, I’ve been blown away by the overt friendliness of drivers to their pedestrians. So friendly, in fact, that yesterday someone yelled out a four SYLLABLE word as I was jaywalking. I kid you not… “I’m sorry, my apologies!” was what I heard from a guy who drove by and didn’t have enough time to stop his car to let me cross. He felt badly that he hadn’t come to a screeching halt to let me break pedestrian laws, wow! The laid-back vibe of these drivers, while nice, is sometimes a little too much, I’d often rather just have everyone follow the simple road rules. The streets are as friendly as this [note, photo was from sunny Toronto]:
happy streets
and I suppose I’ll just have to get used to people offering me kind words, cookies & lemonade as I jaywalk in front of them. O-bri-ga-da!

Reason #38 I love the interweb

Posted in Love on September 21, 2009 by Cristina

An ambitious man named Jason Polan is trying to draw EVERY PERSON IN NEW YORK! You read right, everyone! As seemingly futile as this endeavor might seem, I totally love that kind of spirit and since I’m not in New York anymore, I arranged it for him to draw my sister. I sent him these instructions: 

Anca will be at the Rockefeller center La Maison du Chocolat store all day Monday & Tuesday wearing a suit selling fancy chocolates. Brown hair in poofy bun and bug eyes. She will offer you free chocolate when you come in and talk fancy as you sit at a table drawing. 

His response: i am not sure i got her.  the lady working there did not have a poofy bun, but hopefully it is her! 
one in eight million 

I miscalculated her hairstyle decision, but he definitely got her. One more person down, a few more million to go. Keep it up, Jason!

It happened

Posted in Music on September 20, 2009 by Cristina

Never thought I’d say this, but I’m all concert-ed out! After 4 nights of nonstop rocking out, I can’t bring myself to wait in line for 3 hours for a free Modest Mouse show, I just can’t do it. I feel a lot like these poor souls I took a picture of a couple of years ago at the 5-day camping music fest, Roskilde:
heart 
My final night of MFNW after throwing in the towel was pretty awesome, the Blind Pilot show was fantastic although I felt a little bad that the crowd (including myself) seemed to cheer loudest to an MGMT cover song they did.
Now it’s time for a week of detox, 8-to-5 responsibility, and an attempt at getting back in the running groove… all things that the beautiful couple in the picture will probably never experience.