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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Cooking

Hey everyone,

My friend is getting married on August 20 (I will be missing the wedding, as you all know I am going to Green Bay) and her bridal shower is next Sunday. I am compiling a cookbook for her (I hope to be getting her a crock pot) and was wondering if you all wouldn't mind sharing a family recipe and/or your favorite, delicious recipe. I know it's off topic, but I figure most of us love to cook and love to share recipes.

Thanks!
Jessica

Saturday, July 30, 2011

My Favorite Chocolate

I stole this idea from my bear friend Olli. I thought it was a cute idea, and we're going to exchange our favorite chocolates. Who would like to start this fun little activity? This is what Olli posted:

"Does anyone want to trade candy with me? If I send you my favourite piece of candy - would you send me yours? Maybe 3 pieces of candy, there's so much to chose from ;)"

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Thankful Thursday (3)

As I'm really tired tonight, I'm going to do a quick thankful post. I am not religious, but I consider myself spiritual that takes from all faiths. I am thankful for my spiritual side and the power of prayer. I never realized before how prayer and meditation really does do good for the soul and awakes your senses. I've been doing daily Old Testament readings and have felt uplifted. Check out this site: www.chabad.com

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Quiet Summer Morning (Birthday Mourning)

Today would have been Jim's 24th birthday. It's so sad he can't celebrate it. The posts today in his memorial via Facebook really got to me:

You should be celebrating today. I keep thinking of how many wonderful things happened to me after I turned 24 and how you deserved to have all those life experiences and so much more. Happy Birthday Jimbo ♥

Happy 24th broseph. It's sad to think of all the crazy awesome things you should be doing to celebrate right now. I'm sure drinking a hoegaarden or three would be involved so I'll make sure to toast to you with one tonight. Wish you were here, kid. Summer ain't the same without ya.


Happy birthday jimbo! Heaven probably has awesome party's (:


Next Friday will mark 5 months since he's been gone. It still really hurts me to think about. I am crying as we speak. It just feels surreal. I wrote this poem today. Tell me what you think.

Quiet Summer Morning (Birthday Mourning)


صباح هادئ الصيف (الحداد عيد ميلاد)



Deep blue and purple hues flood the sky العميق الأشكال الزرقاء والأرجوانية الفيضانات السماء ،

Over the house where the slain lie فوق المنزل حيث تكمن القتيل.

The birds coo and sing, وسجع الحمائم والغناء ،

At the stroke of six, the bells begin to ring; في ضربة لستة أطفال ، لتبدأ أجراس عصابة؛

Slow and doleful, a dreadful dirge— بطيئة وكئيبة ومخيفة، نشيد وطني



Like the day the tears stained and purged مثل اليوم الدموع الملون وتطهير.

April is the cruelest month—March even crueler أبريل هو أقسى من شهر مارس حتى أشد قسوة،

Alas, I wish the day was April Fools— للأسف ، وأتمنى اليوم الذي أبريل السفيه،

Snow as white as a clean cotton swab; كما الثلج الأبيض الذي مسحة القطن النظيفة ;

A calm blue sky sobs الهدوء تنهدات السماء الزرقاء.

As blackness penetrates, night falls كما تخترق السواد، هبوط الليل

The death knell once so far now calls. ناقوس الموت مرة واحدة حتى الان تدعو الآن.

Earth is cloaked in impenetrable darkness ترتدي الأرض في الظلام لا يمكن اختراقها؛

As this fury of the flurries replace in starkness وهذا الغضب من تلك الثلوج في استبدال صارخ

And covers the shallow grave; ويغطي القبر الضحلة؛



The bitterness and coldness rips and shaves ومزقت المرارة وبرودة والحلاقة

tears and the once alive, happy face. والدموع على قيد الحياة مرة واحدة، وجها سعيدا.

Diiiiing, dooonng, the droning bells loom قرع، دونغ ، اجراس متكاسل تلوح في الأفق

Loom, loom, looming of the doom تلوح في الأفق ، تلوح في الأفق ، يلوح في الأفق من عذاب

In the rap, rap, rapping of six. في موسيقى الراب، الراب ، موسيقى الراب من ستة أفراد.

The memory that remains licks; الذاكرة التي لا يزال يلعق؛

Dew of the hot, humid day ahead, الندى من اليوم، والساخنة الرطبة القادمة ،

Reminds me of the day that tread. يذكرني اليوم الذي معالجته.

On this peaceful July morning في هذا الصباح يوليو السلمية ،

I sit amongst the flowers pouring; أجلس بين الزهور تتدفق؛

Tears that flow, the wish you الدموع التي تتدفق، وأتمنى لكم

Could have lived to see 24 too كان يمكن أن يعيش ليرى أيضا 24

And the other years that were meant والسنوات الأخرى التي كان من المفترض

To be filled with meaning, not spent— أن تكون مليئة معنى، وليس المستنفد

Happy birthday, you will never be forgotten. عيد ميلاد سعيد، وأنك لن تكون منسية.






Monday, July 25, 2011

IT'S OVER! IT'S FINALLY OVER!

http://msn.foxsports.com/nfl/s​tory/NFL-labor-players-approve​-new-collective-bargaining-agr​eement-072511?GT1=39002

The strike is finally over! I will be seeing a game on August 19 after all! Friday I get paid from West Chester, so I will be buying my tail gating ticket. I bought the game ticket in May.

Oh, I heard from my bank a few weeks ago, and the hotel was paid, everything will be fine. I also printed out my boarding pass for the flight. I am so excited for August 18. It can't come soon enough (though mom and dad are starting to worry).

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Norwegian Memorial

I'm not the best drawer, but I made a picture for my facebook. Then I spruced it up to look like this:


I remember from 2005-2007 I had a love affair with Norway. I loved everything Norwegian. Here's a poem I wrote in 10th grade about myself. It's comedic gold.

I was born the fourth of July in 89.
My hair is dark brown, straight as a line.
I love music by Motley Crue, Pantera, and Alice In Chains,
I don't like dentists - they cause too much pain.

I love history, especially the Civil War.
I like playing in the rain when it pours.
I love to play with cats,
But I hate wearing hats.

I want to pursue a career in rhetoric.
I am also bad with mathematics.
I like writing stories,

Especially about life after the 1840s.

I want to visit Norway and the South,
But plane trips make me pout.
I love German culture and speaking,
And a place to live in Dresden I am seeking.
Public speaking gives me the jitters;
I hope to make it glitter.

I like everything clean,
So if I find dirt, I can get pretty mean.
I like playing in the snow,
Until it chills my toes.


As we take a moment of silence, let us reflect with this poem I wrote in homage to this Norwegian singer I used to love (I wrote this in 10th grade as well):

If Earth was cloaked in impenetrable darkness,
And humankind disappeared.
Not a single bird or animal would remember.
And Spring herself, awakening from Darkness,
Would never know we were gone.


Friday, July 22, 2011

Hot as Hell

I normally don't use that term, but it really is hot as hell. All week I was planning to try frying an egg on a stone outside to see if the rumors were true. So, after work I did that. Look at the pictures:





I just cracked open the egg. This was taken at 3:15.

Two hours later at 5:30:





I hate eggs, but after seeing this, I was really repulsed. Eww, just think of things left in a car.

Anyway, I'm participating in this activity at the lovely Kiersten at The Invocation of My Muse about paper journal entries. Please check it out. From now on, I will be posting this image on my posts:



Thursday, July 21, 2011

Thankful Thursday (2)

It’s Thankful Thursday again! On Tuesday night my great uncle’s common-law wife called Nan and I to tell us my great-uncle passed away at the age of 90. He is going to be cremated. Nan was saying I was the only one of the great nieces and nephews never really knew him since he moved down to Florida 40 years ago. I can say I’m thankful I knew him—he was a cool man and very friendly. He would always visit Nan, Mom, Dad and I when he drove up to Pennsylvania (stopped 10 years ago). I loved the stories he used to tell about being in the Navy and being stationed in Pearl Harbor during World War II; thankfully he was sent to Pearl Harbor AFTER the bombing. He would always call me during the Christmas season and we’d catch up and he would praise my attempts and half-hearted accomplishments. He also loved to hear my travel stories, especially when I went to Germany for a week and a half in 2007. I’m going to miss that, but I am lucky I got to know him unlike my other cousins.


I am also thankful for my doctors and therapist for helping me keep my health on track. Yes, bipolar does suck, but as I was telling Nan about how at least Uncle Freddy lived a long fruitful life (I guess that’s why I don’t mourn when someone old dies) unlike children who have diseases and die young or people who are murdered. Although there are many days where I wish I didn’t have this disorder, I am thankful I don’t have anything more severe and lying in the hospital hooked up to machines or going through painful chemo treatments and worrying about dying. This part of being thankful might not make sense, but before my therapies and medication, I was very suicidal and could experience some of the hell these patients most likely go through (but not really on the same scale). I couldn’t imagine getting chemo or going through that process. I’m thankful that despite my mental health, I am a healthy girl.

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I wrote a few six word stories:

Exhaustion. Sweat. Mirages of fiery fog.


  

Neon sun; to the pond now!

  

For sale: fame, angst, guitar, shotgun.

  

Infinite: beyond experience. The end.


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Heat, Heat, Go Away

Today was 95 degrees--102 degrees with humidity-- and the air conditioning at job #1 broke (I so hope the air conditioning at job #2, the library, is working. I only work there 6:30-8:30 tonight and tomorrow night), so it was brutal today. I still have a headache and I've been out of work for ten minutes. It makes me wish I was here:
 http://www.weather.com/wea​ther/today/McMurdo+Antarct​ica+AYXX0010
I have never been a fan of the summer. I love winter, fall and spring. I wish I could hibernate in the summer. Oh, I wrote the essay too! I will post tomorrow, mayhaps.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Early Thanks

I know, I know, my thankfulness usually isn't until Thursday, but sue me I have something to write about today that I am VERY grateful about.

Lately money has been a big problem for me with the diagnosis and me loving to spend. Last month I received an e-mail from the Sierra Club stating there was a scholarship available and all I needed to do was write a survey, get a letter from a professor, a letter from an organization or someone I helped and write an essay. I asked one of my favorite philosophy profs to write me a letter by June 30th. I never heard back from him, so I assumed he forgot and didn't bother with an essay.

I received this e-mail today at work:



Jessica – I received your letter of recommendation but nothing else. If you are still interested, please submit the rest of your information to us. You should provide the information requested:
 
Applications must include a letter of application; the student’s academic record; two letters of support: one academic and the other from a community group in which the applicant has done volunteer work; and a 300-word essay on how the student intends to use their environmental education to protect the environment. Each essay must include a heading with the applicant’s name, home mailing address, email, and phone number.
 
Thanks for your interest in the Wyona Coleman Scholarship. – Phil Coleman and Wendi Taylor
 
So, I replied:
Hi Wendi,
 
I’m still waiting for the professor. Thank you.
 
Jessica
 
And got this response:
The only thing we have received on your behalf is  a letter from Prof. Edward Pollitt. We are also looking for your essay, your grades and a letter of recommendation from a community group for which did volunteer work. If you have any of those please email them to me or Phil Coleman. -- Wendi
 
 
Tonight I have to write the 500 word essay and send it off tomorrow. Oh my God, I so want to hug Prof. Pollitt right now (I know it would be inappropriate) for doing such a huge favor for me. I also want to hug the Sierra Club right about now as well. I feel so blessed right now and so thankful.  

Finished Product

Hey everyone,


Still looking for a title, but here is the finished product. Opinions are welcome. :)

Jessica

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"Any way you want it," the Aqua NettedTM lead singer croons into the mic while stepping off of the makeshift stage next to the bar area. We fans are front and center; the waitresses are scurrying around us delivering shots of Jack or vodka or whatever one can dream of, froofy girly drinks and beer to the tables that are scattered everywhere. At the bar men and some women are drinking; all is silent or whatever conversation there was had been drowned out by drums, electric and bass guitars.



It is mostly women in the audience that is front and center to the stage; I am the youngest, or what it seems like to me, in the crowd that swarm the really hot lead singer with the Aqua NetTM now dripping off the sweat of his stringy blond hair. What was once held together neatly by the 80s staple, his hair now covers his beet red face.



"Oh, all night," he crescendos to mimic Steve Perry's wonderful crooning and voice, "oh, every night. So hold tight;" he winks at me, extending his hand, grabbing mine and pulling me front and center like a man deeply in love pulling his girlfriend to a romantic spot to pop the question of marriage.



His hands are warm and sweaty, but I pay no mind to that detail; because maybe the energy of the band and crowds around me mixed with the nervousness made me feel hot and sticky or the shot of Jager I took before being whisked away make me feel warm and entranced in his touch and gaze. His hazel eyes stare deeply into my amber brown eyes as he continues to sing lovingly to me.



Twirling my hair playfully, he begins to flirt with me. I am turning red; I am not used to people publicly flirting with me, especially a rocker in the middle of a show and in front of a bar full of people.



Handing the mic to me, I get to sing the chorus of the song-ultimately playing the role of one of Perry's lovers. I am not too self-conscious over the possible symbolism, but the fact I will be using my horrid voice to sing.



"Oh, hold on, hold on," I meekly sing into the mic. Meekness fails me, however, my voice echoes around the bar and amplifies the instruments. I continue to sing as I turn a raspberry colour and hope that I don't reek of the licorice scent of Jager. Somewhere between the commotion and me rocking out, I look my rocker in the eye and all my nervousness evaporates from the energy of the droning bass, the whammy, vibrato and sliding of the guitars and the loudness of the drums around me. I let the energy of the crowd devour me.



"Any way you want it, that's the way you'll get it," he finishes and kisses my hand as women's eyes jealously watch.



"I'd like another shot of Jager," I say to the waitress I quickly flag as I sit at my table front row, locking eyes with the dreamy rocker. I've always loved 80s hair metal men that drown their hair in Aqua NetTM with clothes in leather and spandex.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Any Way You Want It, That's the Way You Need It...

Hey,




I am working on a very short piece. It’s not done yet; my pen just died. I wanted your opinion thus far on it. And what should I call it?



Thanks,

Jessica


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~




“Any way you want it,” the Aqua Netted™ lead singer croons into the mic while stepping off of the makeshift stage next to the bar area. Us fans are front and center; the waitresses are scurrying around us delivering shots of Jack or vodka or whatever one can dream of, froofy girly drinks and beer to the tables that are scattered everywhere. At the bar men and some women are drinking; all is silent or whatever conversation there was had been drowned out by drums, electric and bass guitars.

It is mostly women in the audience that is front and center to the stage; I am the youngest, or what it seems like to me, in the crowd that swarm the really hot lead singer with the Aqua Net™ now dripping off in the sweat of his stringy blond hair and covers his beet red face.

“Oh, all night,” he crescendos to mimic Steve Perry’s wonderful crooning and voice, “oh, every night. So hold tight;” he winks at me, extending his hand, grabbing mine and pulling me front and center.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Old School Rocks Screwballs


video



There is nothing more that I love than the energy of a rock show, especially a cover band in a bar. The energy is wild and nothing beats how down to earth the band members are with fans. :)

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Adventures in St. Peter's Village



Which six word story do you like best?

1.) Seeking: rolling springs and valleys, peace.
2.) Female seeking rolling springs and peace.

I am going to see a show at a local restaurant soon, so while I sit in the restaurant before the band plays, I am going to work on a poem. I did come up with a line so far:

"It's been a long time..." into the wind blows.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Thankful Thursday (1)

I know, I know, it's Friday, but I was in a weird mood last night... manic, yet didn't really feel like writing. I won't get into the details. :X Anyway, every Thursday from now on, even on off days I will force myself because I think being thankful for something will be helpful in my treatment. So here goes my first post on being thankful. :)

I feel really thankful for nan, as I call my grandma. She's seen me through my ups and downs and has loved me all the same. I don't know where I'd be without her, I love her dearly. I consider her my mother because I confide everything in her. She jokes saying she should also be my therapist. A few times she's helped me get out of the hole from my manic spending and sometimes I feel really guilty because I know she can't really afford it. When I graduate I want to help her out.

I am also thankful for my dad because he is the same way. :) I love them both dearly.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

2nd Outfit/ More Philadelphia Freedom


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


We stroll past the resting soldiers and I spot a soldier showing off his musket collection. I whisper to Chris, “We should stop here first. Rifle and musket demos are always fun!” She smiles and nods, hoping to get to play with one of the muskets, and we stop in back of the little children watching the re-enactor intently.
          “Now this right here,” as he holds up an ivory cloth, “keeps the barrel clean. Cleanliness is very important for weapons.”
          Children ooh and ah and as the soldier continues he holds up one of the muskets and the musket ball explaining, “Now, muskets weren’t all that accurate. The musket balls left damage, but most soldiers died from disease.”[6]
          “Ew,” a few children chime in and walk away, not wanting to hear more about disease. I see dice and playing cards and I assume that is what drew them in on the display in the first place, but Chris and I missed it. I remember those same cards and die from Valley Forge and just study them again and admiring how simple people of the past were. As I study all that is lying on the quilt, Chris asks the re-enactor a few questions.
          “So, that horn right there, did that hold water?” I reply breaking out of my studying trance.
          “Oh, this metallic tin right here is the canteen,” the re-enactor points to the silver canteen on the left.
          “Oh, no, I didn’t mean that. I mean that ivory or elephant trunk looking thing,” I ask again patiently.
          “That! Right! It holds gun powder.”
          “I give you a lot of credit,” I begin to say randomly, “that you still do this on really hot days like today.”
          “I sometimes wonder how I do this. My uniform is mostly wool.”
          “Yeah, I am really into the Civil War and go to those reenactments all the time and they have the same problem. But, our love for history always perseveres.”
          He smiles at us; Chris and I give him our thanks and we stroll to the gun expert located next to him.
          Two Asian boys stood at the front and watch the Irish[7] looking re-enactor hold the Kentucky Rifle. The soldier hands us a milled Spanish dollar worth five dollars that read “this bill entitles the Bearer to receive five Spanish milled dollars or the Value there-of in Gold or Silver, according to a reolution of CONGRESS pa∫∫ed at Philadelphia, July 22, 1776” with his name (Justin Blocksom) and his regiment (The “Old” 11th Pennsylvania Regiment) on the back.[8]
          “Ooooh,” the boys coo and the game of twenty ensue. Blocksom smiles and continues, “Each member was equipped with a firearm plus a bladed back-up arm, such as a short sword, belt axe or bayonet,” with Blocksom securing the bayonet atop the Rifle. After it is secured, he thrusts the rifle and scares the boys.
          “Yet, unlike the mother country’s own militia regulations—in which the authorities controlled the arms and stored them together in a secured central location between muster days—each American had to provide his own arms and keep them at home.”
Justin Blocksom of the “Old” 11th Pennsylvania Regiment showing off his rifle and bayonet.          Tiny hands shoot up and more questions ensue. You can tell Blocksom is ecstatic, Description: Description: http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/263408_1896586382134_1465830223_31761510_3626517_n.jpgespecially since these kids are very interested in the history. “Let me ask you,” Blocksom cuts in, “where are you from?”
          The mother responds in her broken English, “We’re from New Jersey.”
          “Oh, you could totally visit the battlefield there!” Blocksom then looks at Chris and me to ask where we are from.
          “I am from King of Prussia,” I respond.
          “Philadelphia, Bridesburg area,” Chris responds.
2 cups milk


½ cup sugar


½ teaspoon vanilla

Dash salt

Ground cinnamon3 cups dry bread cubes (4 slices)

1 ½ cups applesauce

1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Dash ground nutmeg

2 tablespoons butter

2 beaten eggsApple Bread Pudding          “You’re all very close,” Blocksom acknowledges and continues with his spiel, “Now this is how you get the musket to fire.” Blocksom rubs the metal part of the rifle to create friction and a spark, which will help the gun work. The boys, as well as Chris and I are in awe about how the soldiers used their weapons.
Above is a recipe that a Colonial Family would eat.In a buttered 8x8x2 inch baking pan layer half the dry bread cubes.  Combine applesauce, 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Spread applesauce mixture over bread cubes.  Layer remaining bread cubes atop.  Dot with butter.  Combine eggs, milk, sugar, vanilla, and salt.  Pour over bread mixture.  Lightly sprinkle cinnamon over top.  Bake at 350 degrees F till a knife inserted just off-center comes out clean, 55 to 60 minutes.  Makes 6 servings.
Description: Description: http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/263408_1896586382134_1465830223_31761510_3626517_n.jpg

          We enter the Constitution Center amidst the fife music loudly playing. I suggested to Chris before we went to Infinite, we should check out the Constitution Center to see if they were having anything for people born on the Fourth of July.
          The cold winds—similar to what was on the El—of Siberia and Antarctica cheerfully greet us as we walk through the glass doors. I spot the information desk and proceed forward. Chris and I approach and the woman sitting at the desk cheerfully asks how she may be able to help us.
          “Hello. My birthday is tomorrow—July 4th—and I was wondering if you have anything for people born on the 4th because I’ve seen in past years there usually is a celebration.”
          “Uh, I’m not sure, let me call Mark.” The receptionist picks up the phone and begins to dial a number, “Hello, Mark, we have someone here who’s birthday is the 4th of July and has a question… Okay… Thank you” and hangs up the phone before saying to me, “he’ll be down in a second.”
         







         





[1] The J is one of the letter routes that Septa have. According to Septa’s website (www.septa.org), the letter routes only run in Philadelphia. The J bus runs from Bridesburg—where Chris lives—to Germantown.
[2] I don’t blame her though, Josef was listening to his iPod and as the story goes, an African American guy comes up and takes it from him. A chase ensues, but the burglar gets away.
[3] I almost called it Margaret-Oxford, but fortunately I looked it up on Google and found this site explaining:
Yes, Orthodox Street and Oxford Avenue sound kind of similar. Both have Os and Xs. But, uh, they’re different.
Following in the footsteps of Philadelphia Weekly, Action News over the weekend referred to Frankford’s Margaret Orthodox El stop at the Margaret Oxford Station:
“…Officers responded to the Margaret Oxford Station…”
Sounds picky of us to make the correction? Maybe. But signs with the correct name of the station are everywhere. And there is also that pleasant little voice that announces the name of every stop as a reminder.
More than likely, no one from Action News has ever been on the Market-Frankford Line. Which is probably why they also reported the east- westbound train traveled south:
“…managed to ride the El southbound…”
Can we make it some kind of policy that all employees of citywide publications be required to ride all public transit lines at least once a year? Or, you know, have a map?
North East Philadelphia. Right NEast/Wrong NEast. (http://neastphilly.com) Published: 04 October 2010. Accessed: 06 July 2011.
The Margaret Orthodox Station. Originally known as the Margaret-Orthodox-Arrott Station, the Margaret Orthodox Station opened in 1988 with much controversy. As I looked up the history for this travel narrative, I came upon an archive of newspapers from 1989:
After a year of waiting, nothing much has changed for those Frankford residents angry over the new Margaret-Orthodox station and other SEPTA reconstruction projects for the worn-out El.
"The station doesn't function for anyone who is elderly or handicapped. Plus, it's horribly ugly," said Joyce Halley, a member of the Historic Preservation Committee of the Frankford United Neighbors/Community Development Corps (FUN/CDC).
Neighbors fear that future restoration of the Frankford terminal might turn out the same way. "That's scary," Halley said recently. Peter Hanlon, a SEPTA spokesman, said SEPTA planned to meet with the group next month to continue discussions. He said no final decisions had been made on renovations to the Margaret-Orthodox station or changes in the Frankford terminal plans.
Lini S. Kadaba. “The Events That Shaped '88.” The Philadelphia Inquirer. 01 January 1989. Accessed: 06 July 2011.
[5] I type “surprisingly” because I expected something underground to be cooler than above ground. From my experience, our basement is usually cold in the summer, unless it is really humid and/or the air conditioning is on. I suppose if it is humid above ground, it’ll be a bit sticky underground. I wanted to do a Google search and came upon this via Answers.com. Although it is dealing with New York City, I am sure Philadelphia does the same thing:
The New York City subway is ventilated by surface air. If it's hot outside, that hot air freely enters the subway through the open grates that you can see as you walk the city streets. The cars are also air conditioned, which surprisingly generates heat in the tunnels. Also, when the cars brake, they generate heat through friction. Add the fact that there is no breeze and the dampness of the subsurface and you have conditions that are often nastier than they are above ground. It isn't a wine cellar that's for sure.
http://gothamist.com/2007/08/28/baking_below_gr.php



[6] In history classes and through documentaries and re-enactments we always learned that the musket balls were more disease causing than an instant fatality. One could assume it was lead poisoning, which might have been a little part of the problem. However, mostly the deaths were caused by other diseases: sepsis being the most likely. A musket ball or Minnie would drive cloth and leather into the wound and the lead would splinter everywhere as soon as it hit bone otherwise it flattens out and punches a HUGE exit door. Bone splinters and shredded viscera mixed with whatever else the shot pushed inside would surely cause sepsis and gangrene within days leaving the man to die screaming in agony and delirium. If he were to survive he would certainly be scarred worse than any modern surgery. Sepsis is poisoning of the blood.  Gangrene is necrosis or tissue death when blood supply is interrupted. Gangrene could cause sepsis.
[7] He looked Irish to me with the red hair, freckles, hazel eyes and really pale skin!
[8] Check out their website at the following address: www.11thPA.org

Monday, July 11, 2011

New Outfit and More Philadelphia Freedom

Here is outfit #1 of what Aunt Kathy bought me. I absolutely love it and it makes me look so beautiful. :)







And here are more of my industrial piercings:







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We make it and as we approach the Margaret-Orthodox Station, Chris and I notice a gang of African American boys sit on the stoop. They are friendly and say hi to us, we respond and walk through the door and make our way up the rickety escalator. You could tell this station was old; it was a bit dirty and just the way the building was built showed its age[1]. I couldn’t wait to get out of that station; it was hotter in there than the sun that beat down on us as we waited for the J. Chris and me walk over to the ticket office, hand the SEPTA man our transfers and waited for the El to take us to Fifth Street via westbound to Sixty-Ninth Street (I didn’t realize Sixty Ninth Street, the Upper Darby side of Philadelphia) was that far from the Northeast, but a traveler learns something new each time they go on an adventure I suppose. As Chris and I wait for the El, to make sure we were on the right one, I ask a native African American Philadelphian that walks by us if this was the El going to Sixty-Ninth Street. She shakes her head yes. I jokingly say to her, “Whenever I travel, the locals become my best friends,” and she laughs, but nods her head in agreement.
          The anger in the El’s roar disrupts our conversation. The furious roar permeated the whole station and echoed through the hot, sticky air.
When the El finally slows, the doors violently slide open releasing frigid cold air onto us. I step into what I would imagine weather to be like in Siberia and Antarctica. I let out a long sigh of relief; Chris and I pick the nearest open seat and we sit down to cool our sweaty bodies.
I feel a bit more comfortable on the El this time, although by the end of the last trip I loved the El; I believe riding with a friend makes it a bit more enjoyable in regards to having someone to talk to.
Description: Description: C:\Users\75JC671566\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\34YE7ZBO\MC900154418[1].wmf
W

e are released from our Antarctic sanctuary back into the surprisingly[2] humid underground of the El/subway station. As Chris and I make our way out, we hear the loud hum, hum, humming of the fans going. It’s not doing any good; I laugh and think to myself. The droning fades as we pass through the revolving doors to make our way back into the hustle and bustle of the metallic jungle.
          The bright yellow sun shocks the eyes of everyone coming from the underground, but the humidity is a familiar demon that we had to battle for five minutes through the maze of the station.
          We stand on Fifth Street for a few moments and decide if we should go get pierced first at Infinite or go to the hookah bar on Third Street first. I suggest to Chris, “Maybe we ought to go to Infinite first to get pierced since it closes at 8—“
In the background are the re-enactors that are resting and hiding from the sun. The re-enactor at the front is showing the rifles.          Flutes, penny whistles and drums linger in the background. I instantly know that the Revolutionary re-enactors are around. Chris spots the tents in front of the Constitution Description: Description: http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/270943_1896584542088_1465830223_31761499_4120632_n.jpgCenter and we both unanimously agree that we should go see “men dressed  up and playing with rifles” first, even if only for a half an hour.



          Chris and I walk across the grass past a few Revolutionary soldiers shooting the breeze and taking a water break. I don’t blame them, however, if I was wearing a wool uniform on a 95˚ —100˚ with humidity—day, I’d be taking multiple water breaks and passing out in the Constitution Center under the air conditioning.



The Margaret Orthodox Station. Originally known as the Margaret-Orthodox-Arrott Station, the Margaret Orthodox Station opened in 1988 with much controversy. As I looked up the history for this travel narrative, I came upon an archive of newspapers from 1989:
After a year of waiting, nothing much has changed for those Frankford residents angry over the new Margaret-Orthodox station and other SEPTA reconstruction projects for the worn-out El.
"The station doesn't function for anyone who is elderly or handicapped. Plus, it's horribly ugly," said Joyce Halley, a member of the Historic Preservation Committee of the Frankford United Neighbors/Community Development Corps (FUN/CDC).
Neighbors fear that future restoration of the Frankford terminal might turn out the same way. "That's scary," Halley said recently. Peter Hanlon, a SEPTA spokesman, said SEPTA planned to meet with the group next month to continue discussions. He said no final decisions had been made on renovations to the Margaret-Orthodox station or changes in the Frankford terminal plans.
Lini S. Kadaba. “The Events That Shaped '88.” The Philadelphia Inquirer. 01 January 1989. Accessed: 06 July 2011.
[2] I type “surprisingly” because I expected something underground to be cooler than above ground. From my experience, our basement is usually cold in the summer, unless it is really humid and/or the air conditioning is on. I suppose if it is humid above ground, it’ll be a bit sticky underground. I wanted to do a Google search and came upon this via Answers.com. Although it is dealing with New York City, I am sure Philadelphia does the same thing:
The New York City subway is ventilated by surface air. If it's hot outside, that hot air freely enters the subway through the open grates that you can see as you walk the city streets. The cars are also air conditioned, which surprisingly generates heat in the tunnels. Also, when the cars brake, they generate heat through friction. Add the fact that there is no breeze and the dampness of the subsurface and you have conditions that are often nastier than they are above ground. It isn't a wine cellar that's for sure.
http://gothamist.com/2007/08/28/baking_below_gr.php



Sunday, July 10, 2011

Great day!

Hello everyone,

Had such a great day with my favorite aunt (Aunt Kathy) and cousin. :) Aunt Kathy picked me up at 12:30 and we went to pick up her dogs, Daphne and Sandy, from grooming at PetSmart. That was a thirty minute ordeal, but I had fun trying to calm them down and walking them to the car. Then we went back to Aunt Kathy's house for a bit; Kaitlyn and I chatted for a while... high school has changed so much since I was there. It's crazy Kaitlyn is going to be a senior and it's crazy to think it was 4 years ago when I was a senior. Where did that time go? Then we went to Cheesecake Factory and had a wonderful lunch and a shopping spree at Urban Outfitters. It was a great day and I really enjoyed myself. :) I will get a picture of my outfits that Aunt Kathy bought me as I wear them. I am going to look so professional.



More on Green Bay: dad's friend's brother in law is a coach for the Packers, so he's going to talk to his friend about if there is a season and if I can meet the team. If there isn't a game, mom said I shouldn't go to Wisconsin, but I want to take a vacation. She doesn't think I should have a problem, so I guess I shouldn't. I'm going to call my bank tomorrow anyway. If there is a game in Wisconsin, maybe I can talk my dad into seeing another game in Pittsburgh (I am a fan both of Steelers and Packers, so I'd be cheering for both) because his friend's brother in law can get him the free ticket in Pittsburgh. Yes, I am a football fanatic. :)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Teddy Bear Picnic Day/ Summer Beauty

















Green Bay worries

So, since being diagnosed as bipolar, Dad cosigned my bank account and have a $50 a day limit. I called the hotel in Green Bay to tell them about my new debit card and the $50 limit. I paid for the hotel a few months ago and it showed up in my checking account that it was paid. They said it shouldn't matter when they swipe at the end since it's already paid. I am going to call my bank tomorrow to check. Should I believe the hotel receptionist? Mom really doesn't want me to go, but this is something I REALLY wanna do. I bought the plane ticket on my AMEX a few months ago and paid mom back for it. She closed the card yesterday. I think I should be good. I guess I am nervous. Tomorrow I buy my tailgate ticket... $15. :)

Living With Bipolar Disorder

Last week mom found a support group via the internet that I joined (www.dbsalliance.com). Each week they have support groups person to person at my university. I think this coming week I am going to go. I also found online support where I can keep a mood journal and chart at https://www.facingus.org/

It hasn't been an easy road, but of course I expected that. I think mom is slowly coming to terms with it, but this past week has been bad with arguments and my mood swings.  I have been yelling and crying a lot; my therapist canceled on me last week because she got sick. I feel more relaxed now, I caught up on my sleep. With this I have to keep a sleep schedule because that helps with moods as well. I guess I'm still learning and can't really put it into words right now. From time to time, I will be giving updates.

I found this contest and I am going to use this as inspiration: http://www.speakaboutdepression.com/learn_winners.php

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Pictures and Travel Narrative (so far)

Philadelphia Freedom


My 22nd birthday (July 4, 2011) spent in the City of Brotherly Love, where America declared her independence and was born.



The graffiti walls welcome mom, dad and I into North Philly on the hot and humid day of July 3, 2011. We are looking for Christine—Chris’s house on Pratt Street, but the ways the streets are set up, we get turned around a bit. I am excited; I’d be spending the next two days with Chris to celebrate my twenty-second birthday on July 4th. Lo and behold!—finally—mom finds the way to get on the one way street that is Pratt Street. The street is narrow and as mom, dad and I look for the address, we are in the center of the road and blocking traffic. Fortunately, Chris’s house is the second house on the block; mom pulls into an open space, I give her a kiss goodbye and dad walks me to the door.

I rap loudly upon the door twice. The haze and humidity smother dad and me as we wait for the door to open. As the tears of sweat drip upon my back, I am hoping Chris heard my knocks. Finally, I hear a key turning and the door opens. Chris is happy to see me, and she sees my dad standing on the sidewalk (with the hot sun down beating on him) and waves enthusiastically. She tells dad something, he laughs quickly; I run down the porch steps and give him a big hug and kiss while he tells me to have fun and stay safe. I run back up the porch stairs and am greeted by the nice, frigid cold air of Chris’s air conditioned house.



Chris and I hop onto the J and we are greeted by the female African American bus driver.

“I’m not letting anyone on unless they bring me a platter plate and a hamburger,” she says and lets out a friendly chuckle.

I smile back and reply, “I know how you feel. You should have told me sooner, I could have brought you something. Tomorrow is my birthday and we have things made.”

Taken aback by my generosity, she says, “Really? Well, happy birthday!” and I insert my $3 and the friendly bus driver graciously hands me the transfer.

I follow Chris to the back of the bus—after her ordeal with Josef earlier that week; she did not trust anyone on buses anymore . The back is noisy and I cannot hear the loud speaker announce the stops. Fortunately, Chris knows where to get off (we’re not on the bus that long either, which is also fortunate) and as soon as she sees the Margaret-Orthodox station in the Frankford section, she pulls down the yellow cord and we hop off through the back door with a bunch of other passengers.

The whole area is crowded. The 73 bus is stopped to let passengers off, but blocks traffic in the process—the cacophonies of horns become deafening fast. Although pedestrians around us are jaywalking, Chris and I wait until the light instructs us to cross (Philadelphia drivers can be crazy). Finally the whitish man instructing us to now cross lights up and in that process, a car almost forgets to stop and almost hits a guy. He does just in time, but that goes to show you how crazy and oblivious some drivers can be. Chris and I run like hell across the street.

 
Pictures from my 22nd birthday:

From the Constitution Center:


From Infinite:





Check out the albums (I'll provide two links, not sure if you have to be a member of snapfish or not... so I will also have my Facebook album):

http://www5.snapfish.com/snapfish/thumbnailshare/AlbumID=4337824025/a=4726268025_4726268025/otsc=SHR/otsi=SALBlink/COBRAND_NAME=snapfish/