turning your orbit around

or... the utter enormity of the task


as promised...

my journal entry from sunday:

yesterday i sat in the sun, in jeans and a t-shirt, and watched jenn and jamie play tennis. the dogs were leashed and lay panting courtside, the car radio was on, and the mountains continued their springmelt into the yampa river.

today, we watched hotel rwanda, a movie that made me - for a brief moment - weep into my hands. jenn fixed dutch baby pancakes and scrambled eggs with a hollandaise, and this mexican hot chocolate that was astoundingly good. we ate and watched the movie and i cried so that my shoulders shook and i had to catch my breath.

then, we went to 4 o'clock mass. instead of the priest, the deacon gave the homily. in it, he used a misguided military analogy to illustrate how christians must work together to do good things in the world. he also likened the difference between christians and secularists to a "war between good and evil." sheesh.

and tomorrow, i will wake to a wet and messy snow that has already begun this evening. this is the time of year when rain holds a tenuous grip on moisture, which can at any time become snow, ice, sleet...

or steam.


yo tengo mucho pinché moco

the above is spanish for i have lots of f#*king boogers.

folks, i'm alive, and working half days until i feel like my normal self.

though sick all saturday and sunday, plus the latter half of last week, it was truly a lovely weekend nonetheless. almost epiphanic. one of those times in my life when i felt lifted - rebellious and ecstatic and at peace all at once. i read, i watched wonderful movies, i thought about faith and tried to better understand mine, and i vowed to do more with my time. and this was not an empty promise.

i have a journal entry to post from yesterday that i forgot at home. i'll put it up tomorrow.

i will say this, though: it all started with what the *bleep* do we know.


can you f*#king believe this?

sick again folks. acute sinisitis. a fun and yummy sinus infection. my antibiotics are pills the size of pez.

that's a big damn pill.

i have never been this sick, this many times, in this short a time period. i'm beginning to wonder if we've got some crazy mold growing in the condo or something.

our big pants gig for tomorrow night had to be cancelled, because i have no friggin' voice. i would sound like elmer fudd if i tried to push it.



a big sloppy mess of a good time

our bassist got shitfaced, and our drummer was right there with him, but big pants had a great live debut nonetheless.

i think it helped tremendously that the audience (60 strong, probably) was just as drunk as the band.

in fact, we did well enough that big pants now has a regular gig on friday nights at braun's. come check us out!

here's the setlist:

What I got/Sublime
Long cut/Uncle Tupelo
Franklin’s tower/Grateful Dead
Ain’t no sunshine/Bill Withers
Ball & biscuit/White Stripes
Rodeo Clowns/Jack Johnson
Voodoo Woman/Koko Taylor (a fellow CMC employee, Heather, sang this with us)
Come together/Beatles
Headhunter/Russell Funke
Just kissed my baby/The Meters
California stars/Wilco
Driver 8/R.E.M.
Rescue blues-Can't Always Get.../Ryan Adams-Stones
Bertha /Grateful Dead
Golden age-Black Napkins/Beck-Zappa


ladies and gentlemen, my 15 minutes...

folks, click here for the big steamboat pilot newspaper article.


ohhhh boy...

first off, i have changed my profile picture back to what it was. the whole rock star thing was a little pretentious, i think. i mean, there were only like 8 people listening to us when that picture was taken, and big pants wasn't even that good yet. more about big pants in a second.

secondly, i've changed my 'about me' stuff. i'm going minimal for now. and i also changed my silly, stupid question that blogger gives you.

okay, so back to big pants. we have a gig this friday. in a bar. a real bar. a nice bar. the students' spring luau formal is from 6 to 9 at braun's. after 9 o'clock, big pants gets to play until we're out of things to play. i don't know how tommy pulled it off, but he got us a gig. with free beer.

holy f*#k.

y'know what, though? i'm not that nervous. we're inviting all our friends, so the crowd will be a sea of familiar faces. that's comforting. and we know our material, so that's good. and russell, our kickass lead guitarist, definitely takes some of the attention away from me onstage - he's phenomenal. so... i think it's gonna go well.

the other thing is that tommy got us a writeup in the weekend section of the friday newspaper, too. i'll scan it and post it next week.

holy f*#k.


help post my bail

On May 12th, they're coming to take me away.

That's right, folks! The Muscular Dystrophy Association is carting me off in handcuffs the morning of Thursday, May 12th.

I will be locked up at the Rio Grande Restaurant, along with many other Steamboat Springs residents, until my bail is paid. And since librarians are not the most handsomely rewarded of professionals, I'm requesting your help in getting me out of the pokey.

You can visit my lockup page to make a donation.

Jenn and I have made many friends here the last 8 months, but we still don't know a ton of people yet - except for students and instructors, neither of whom have much money - so I'm depending on all of you loyal readers who know and love me (0r at least tolerate me) to come to my rescue. It's a good cause, and my lockup page has more info on what your money will actually do.

If you're in Steamboat on the 12th, stop in at the Rio and say hi.

And no, Rob, your mama cannot come for a conjugal visit.


geno's white tanks meditation

my father has been a writer/editor of accounting textbooks for as long as i can remember. but underneath that number-crunching exterior is a poet's heart.

when i was down in AZ for spring break, we went on a hike in the white tanks mountains west of the valley. because of all the moisture they've had down there this winter and spring, the wildflowers were just a riot. absolutely stunning.

it was a wonderful hike - incredible scenery, perfect temperature, lively discussion - everything a walk in the mountains should be. it inspired him to write a poem, and with his permission i've included it below.

Granite Stones

I have felt the magic
Of the mountains and the wind
My prayers would be answered
If I could feel it once again

Let me rest in the arms of Mother Nature
Let me lie beneath a cairn of granite stones
Let the wildflowers grow
All around my resting place
And let the gentle mountain breezes
Lift my spirit home

The old men of the desert
Raise their arms towards the sky
Birds of prey play on the wind
And circle up so high

Let me rest in the arms of Mother Nature
Let me lie beneath a cairn of granite stones
Let the wildflowers grow
All around my resting place
And let the gentle mountain breezes
Lift my spirit home


i am a shattered shell of a man

illinois lost in the national championship game last night, to north carolina.

f#*king north carolina.

it's not like they don't have enough championship banners hanging from their rafters. this was illinois' magical season! a 37-2 record. a brand of team basketball that is almost extinct in today's environment of high-schoolers skipping college and going straight to the nba. only 3 other teams have ever won that many games in a season!

we just couldn't get to 38.

rather than throwing myself off of a mountain, which i contemplated for a brief moment, i decided to snowboard down one instead. though the gods decided not to bless my beloved illini with a national championship, they did bless steamboat ski area with 9 inches of fresh powder overnight. it's the last week of the season, and the mountain was virtually empty of annoying texan tourists. and, consequently, since i didn't have to share 9 inches of powder with the aforementioned tourists...

i had a damn good time before work this morning.

that's life, isn't it? highs and lows. within 12 hours my heart was ripped out by a sporting event, and then i was hooting and hollering through calf-high powder in a perfectly spaced aspen grove.

my dad said a funny thing last night. it's the 100th year of illinois basketball, and he said "well, it only took us a hundred years to get to the championship game." implying, of course, that it might take 100 more.

illinois is an elite program. and i believe we'll be back much sooner than that.


alone on the road

a couple nights ago, i drove home after working the library's night shift, in the middle of a snowstorm. on NPR was this spacey, new agey song with strong undercurrents of ancient chinese music. no one else was on the road.

time slowed down, i was floating through this storm in my little car, and it was one of the most serenely beautiful moments i've ever experienced. those sublime and perfect accidents where music matches up with your life in such a way that it feels like a movie soundtrack.

it was right up there with the time timmy and i were driving on country roads in a convertible in the summer, and stumbled onto an enormous cornfield flashing brilliantly with fireflies. i'll admit - enya was playing during that moment, but it was perfect at the time. we kicked back, hardly said a word, and just stared in wonder.

wonderment. is there a better word in the english language?