taylweaver: (Default)
So after my summer courses, I had an entire month of vacation. Though two weeks of it were plagued by migraines, I feel, overall, that it was a good vacation, and a good length, and, aside from the exhaustion that comes from suddenly waking up two hours earlier than I have been, I am feeling okay about going back to work.

Some highlights of this past month include: two weekends at home with the family - for differing values of family, low-key hanging out with small groups of friends, Spamalot, Shakespeare in the Park, Shakespeare on the Run - twice, a Shabbat visit from [livejournal.com profile] sen_ichi_rei, a weekday visit from [livejournal.com profile] flintknappy and [livejournal.com profile] daphster, a trip down to visit [livejournal.com profile] rymenhild in her hometown - where [livejournal.com profile] flintknappy was also visiting, a trip to the mets game with [livejournal.com profile] daphster, [livejournal.com profile] flintknappy, and the trip's organizer, [livejournal.com profile] lexiefaye - in from her hometown for a wedding - and about ten other people I know from college, in which the Mets lost in the tenth inning after an exciting game, half a shabbat wih [livejournal.com profile] lexiefaye, and oh, did I mention that it was free drawstring totebag night at the Mets game? That's right. I ended the summer with a cleaner room, a few more pages scrapbooked, new sneakers, and yet another free totebag.

Anyway, it's been a good one. And now it is done.
taylweaver: (Default)
So I started my summer Spanish class yesterday. My other class, on language assessment (related to ESL), began on Monday and I am really enjoying it.

My Spanish class? Not so much. How bad is it that I can sit there in class and explain how I know she is a bad teacher? I mean, she is friendly and well-meaning, and helpful in providing vocabulary and structure when students want to give individualized answers to questions in the text.

But then she deals with grammar.

Maybe it is the linguistics major inside me. Maybe I just can't stand it when a teacher gives an inaccurate description of why a certain grammar structure works the way it does. Like when she was explaining the Arabic influence on a certain Spanish construction:

"Me gusta el gato" is the equivalent of "I like the cat." It really translates to, "the cat pleases me." Word by word:
"me pleases the cat."

She was trying to explain why it is backwards, and she said it is because Arabic is written right to left.

I was so frustrated! It is a different grammar system - nothing to do with which direction they write!

Plus, other people are having such issues following the grammar stuff. I am not, because of many factors:
a) early experience with two very different grammar systems - English and Hebrew - leaves me more open to learning new grammars
b) I did learn some French - even if I have forgotten most of it
c) my linguistics background
d) I am just good at learning grammars
But other people don't have that, and they are struggling.

Anyway, it is frustrating.

That having been said, there is one convenient thing about the class:
We miss two instructional days to visit a museum and a restaurant on our own.
Next Tuesday, I will be going to a museum. (Lemme know if you want to come. I am thinking Museo del Barrio.)
The Tuesday after that, I will not be going to a restaurant.

Instead, I will be at home, relieved that I only have half a day of classes on a fast day. :)
So that is a very good thing.

As for the restaurant, well, I am going to try to find a kosher one that sells cuisine from a Spanish-speaking country (I am open to suggestions) and, barring that, I will just write up something about Jewish Sephardi foods instead. (which she said is okay. As I said, she is nice.)

As for the sunset part, well, twice a year, the sunset aligns with the east-west blocks in the city. Which, as we know, are not actually east and west. Anyway, it happens on May 28th and July 12th. (I am not crazy. I looked it up today on a website.) And today was sunny and gorgeous. And digital cameras are convenient because I could look at the viewscreen instead of the sun, and thus not hurt my eyes.

Anyway, I got some pictures.
taylweaver: (Default)
Back in the summer, I went into the DMV to get a new license - I do, after all, live in a different state now. My first license, I got the day I passed my driving test, but this time, they told me they had to mail it.

At which point I left the country, short one photo ID. (They made me hand in the old license - oh well.)

When I returned a month later, I found an envelope from the DMV, as expected - but it did not contain a license.

Turns out they had messed up my picture. And I needed to go back in to get a new one taken. And the DMV closes at four.

I generally finish work at 3:30 - too late to get to the DMV on time. But every so often, I have meetings in that general neighborhood (or at least a neighborhood closer than the one I work in).

Two weeks ago, I went from the meeting to the subway, and from the subway to the DMV, and would have arrived around 3:55 - only I walked right past it without seeing it! The place needs much clearer signage. By the time I realized my mistake, they were just locking the doors. I was five minutes too late. I consoled myself by going shopping at H+M and Old Navy - both in the area. (And I actually bought stuff too.)

Today, I had another meeting. And this time, I was at the DMV around 3:40. Miraculously, I think I walked back out around 3:50.

The DMV had messed up, in typical DMV fashion - but they have now corrected the error in a very un-DMV and rather efficient fashion. I got to skip every line in the place! It was a rather pleasant surprise.

And I got to see the photo this time. I think I told the woman that it looked "utterly horrid." Or something like that. She said most people feel that way about their license photos. We both handled it with good humor, I think. But at least now I am forewarned - I don't have to wait two weeks to see how bad my photo came out.

And then, even though I did not really need to console myself, I was in the neighborhood, so I went shopping...
taylweaver: (Default)
Ah, summer in Manhattan...

Ordinarily, getting tickets to Shakespeare in the Park means either waiting in line from about 7 or 8 in the morning for the free ones - especially if it's a weekend - or paying $100 for the convenience of not waiting. (Technically, a donation...)

Yesterday, [livejournal.com profile] mbarr and I walked up to the box office around 1:30 (they give out the tickets starting at 1:00) and asked for four - and thus we went to see Macbeth.

It's amazing what a little rain can do...

My favorite part? Watching the cast/crew break out the squeegees for some synchronized water herding after the half hour rain delay that, in addition to threatening the sound system (outdoor theater, for those of you outside NYC - hence the "in the park" part) also managed to soak the stage.

In general, though, the play was good. They did some very surreal stuff, especially at the end, with the way they did the various death scenes.

And we even had seats toward the front - though way off to the side...

And then tonight, another free event. Even overcast skies look good from the Great Lawn of Central Park - especially when they manage not to rain a single drop on the sea of people below - and the skyline looks cool from there when it is foggy. The fireworks at the end looked cool too.

Oh, and of course, the musical numbers were also good - the ones we could hear, anyway - but somehow it didn't matter that I missed half the words. The casual hanging-out-on-a-picnic-blanket-at-dusk-in-the-park atmosphere made me not really care if I was too busy chatting to catch the words, or if I just couldn't hear it.

All in all, I would just like to reiterate, the summer can be a wonderful time in Manhattan.
taylweaver: (Default)
... you go to a baseball game and there is a kosher hot dog stand
... it seems perfectly normal to spend $4.50 for the aforementioned kosher hot dog ($2.50 for a bag of chips, on the other hand...)
... the pre-game entertainment is provided by a chorus from a Jewish high school
... the principal of the aforementioned Jewish high school throws the opening pitch

Yeah, so I went to go to a Mets game last night. Apparently, they won, but I missed that part, since I needed to leave after the sixth inning to get home in time to get a good night's sleep (it didn't work. Still exhausted. Oh well.)

I didn't know people were going until I got a phone message at work from [livejournal.com profile] flintknappy, and I didn't know I was going until everyone else was running late and I was able to make it to the meeting place - and decided to ride the train with everyone (yay unlimited metrocard) just to hang out with the people who were going: [livejournal.com profile] daphster, [livejournal.com profile] flintknappy, and [livejournal.com profile] hampsblog. It wasn't until we got there that I actually decided to go to the game.

Anyway, it was fun, so a huge thanks to [livejournal.com profile] daphster for thinking of it. This is my first time going to a major league baseball game in NYC - rather impressive when one considers I grew up in NJ, where we didn't have our own teams, so the NY teams were "ours" also.

PS

Apr. 12th, 2006 05:49 am
taylweaver: (The author)
Got a haircut.

My hair is now 12 inches shorter/

The guy who cut it is Jewish and from Queens. His name is Fabio.

Go figure.

Guess that means I'll be needing a new userpic...
taylweaver: (Default)
Thank you to [livejournal.com profile] mysticengineer for a wonderful (free!) evening yesterday. Three of us went to a concert at the Cooper-Hewitt design museum thanks to the time and money [livejournal.com profile] mysticengineer put into buying Time Out NY and looking through it for ideas for stuff to do last night. We never did make it to museums during the day... (that had been our first plan) but this means my room is also a little cleaner.

Anyway, at the Cooper-Hewitt, they have an exhibit related to Israeli design. After the concert, we got to take a peak at part of the exhibit, even though the rest of the museum was closed. The general idea of the exhibit (not followed by all of the designers) seems to have been to take one useful thing and turn it into another useful thing.For example, the lamps made from plastic tubing - the spots that were shaved down let the light through - and they looked cool too. And many different kinds of chairs. One that was held together by strips of cloth (easily dismantled), one made from melted plastic straws, and one from a sliced up plastic trash can - we liked that one.

But the funniest one there had to be the tiffany lamp (their words, not mine) made from milk jugs. Why? Because not only was the date stamp still there, and not only was it in Hebrew, it also said (in Hebrew, but I don't know how to put Hebrew in my LJ) "kosher for Passover." We all had a good laugh over that one. Did someone drink a little too much milk over Pesach? Or get bored over their Pesach vacation? It was funny.

At some point, I'd like to see the rest of the exhibit - I am curious what we missed.

This museum was, for me, a highlight of the free museum night last June (what do they call that night? I forget) when they had the extreme textile exhibit. It was all about using textiles and textile techniques (such as knitting, weaving and even crocheting) to create new and useful things that might not ordinarily be made that way - like buildings. Well, here, again, was an interesting exhibit. I am really starting to like and appreciate this museum. It makes you think about possibilities.

Oh, and since I haven't posted for a while, some things I didn't get to comment on:

The teaching is a bit better (ask me if you want to here more - I won't say more in a public post). Of course, it helps that I now have this week off...

And last Sunday's snowstorm: the worst part was, it was a Sunday. So we didn't miss any school. But a bunch of us did go to Central Park, including [livejournal.com profile] wildblueyonder2 and [livejournal.com profile] nuqotw. There were seven of us in all. Afterward, I heard that this was the most snow that fell in Central Park in one day - close to 27 inches. Well, since we went late in the afternoon, we must have been standing in most of it - that's two feet of snow, plus a bit. It didn't feel at all unusual, though. Maybe because this stuff tends to accumulate. Getting one blast and then having it melt without any more falling is not the way things generally go. So it didn't feel so unusual, but the powdery nature of it made it easy to walk in - and an interesting challenge to make snowballs from. we had to really press the snow between our hands. Afterward, [livejournal.com profile] mysticengineer suggested we should have breathed on it. Leave it to the engineer to have a different solution.

Anyway, so that was fun.

Today, I am going to see the dentist. Not fun, per se, but I am hoping he won't find anything to worry about.

So that's my update.

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