succumbing to peer pressure

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Day 1

So I decided to start taking Lexapro yesterday. For the first few hours I felt a little light headed, dizzy, and jittery, I'm sure at least half of which was psychosomatic (though my doc does say that side effects are possible from the first dose). By afternoon things seemed to level off and I felt fairly ok, not really different from how I've been feeling for the past several days, weeks. Had a fairly normal rest of the day - got some work done at school, did my usual work out, hung out with friends in the evening.

Day 2

I was a little late with the second dose today after crashing over at the boys' place last night (but that's ok, since frankly he's a way more calming influence than any drug I'm taking). I generally seemed to react better to it today, though still brief periods of light headedness. Sleepiness is also supposed to be a potential side effect, but given my current state of sleep deprivation who knows if I'm sleepy because I'm sleepy or because of the Lex. Either way, nothing too bothersome, and I'm definitely feeling up to being productive today.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005


According to archived documents of Roberts's various arguments and memoranda:

He defended, for instance, the constitutionality of proposed legislation to restrict the ability of federal courts to order busing to desegregate schools.

On other civil rights issues, he encouraged a cautious approach by courts and federal agencies in enforcing laws against discrimination.

<>The overall picture the article seems to paint is that he is cautious when it comes to extending rulings beyong the strict letter of federal law. This seems reasonable, perhaps even like the sort of judge one (any one, of any political leaning) would want on the Supreme Court. However, a) this is the slant of the article, based mostly on paraphrased excerpts from documents, not the documents themselves, so I'd much rather wait and make the judgement on my own, thanks and b) this also seems like a potentially dangerous way to simply rationalize things like, oh, I don't know, not wanting to enforce laws against discrimination!


Amelia confirms my (personally, somewhat startling) conclusion from about a week ago:
all of this is getting to one point: whatever your moral convictions about abortion, you need to understand that they are, indeed must be, different from your political/legal preferences about abortion. abortion might be awful. it might be murder. it might be "genocide," as the crazies outside PPSP are fond of putting it. none of that means that public policies restricting access to the safe provision of abortion services are the right public policy instrument for ending abortions. for a variety of reasons (see "mind-bending gravity," above), women will seek abortions whether they are legal or not. this has a direct analog in abstinence-only sex "education:" namely, you can make the practice secret and illicit, but that will not by itself have any effect, save this: the consequences of the act will be more dire.

(go read the rest of her musings/rant, it's well worth it)


this morning was a little weird...I ended up devolving into what felt like verbal diarrhea about my various relationships with Mom, Dad, and Brad. Given that these topics have well been covered in previous sessions five years ago, I'm not sure how fruitful it was. Plus, when I venture onto those topics I sound like people I hate - spouting psycho-babble about how "I know it's not my job to fix things" and whatnot. Blah. Plus, is it reasonable that I have a hard time taking my therapist seriously ever since I walked in wearing a March for Women's Lives shirt and she asked, what's that?

My Darling April

has joined the ranks of the scary real world, with a real job! Congrats April! She is officially the data manager for "Safety and Dose Escalating Study of Oral Sodium Phenylbutyrate in Subjects with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis." You know you're jealous.

Also, mostly for April, but also as a reminder to myself, and for anyone else who might be interested - new in paperback - "Soul Made Flesh: The Discovery of the Brain - and How It Changed the World" by Carl Zimmer.


(disclaimer - I realize that many who read my and/or carrie's blogs are probably tired of listening to us go on and on about each other and Mark, and I was going to apologize for that and justify it with the fact that I'll be seeing her in less than a week(!) and therefore we are on each others minds even more than usual, but then I remembered, hey, this is my blog, screw you! I can write about whatever I damn well please)

Over lunch today I was telling Anna how even though she's moving in before I am she should let me know when she plans to spend her first night at our new place so I can come over and we can have a little slumber party and of course I thought of Mark and Carrie and I camped out with sleeping bags and the flip-n-fuck and little else in our lovely, empty Belmar Estates and I very nearly suggested renting The Pillowbook before I remembered that's not really everyone's thing.

Jennings Lee Hart, Esquire

Just a little shout-out to one of my oldest and dearest friends who either is currently or will be soon taking The Bar and shortly thereafter will make, I am sure, a damn fine lawyer.

Ok, back to surfing the Ikea site for furniture I cannot yet afford instead of working on my lit review.

Gah! I just got a postcard from Jess from Egypt! (turns out she was there two weeks before the bombing, big sigh of relief) As if worrying about her living in Israel weren't hard enough.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Oh! And because I really am this dorky, I used the pythagorean theorem today to figure out just how far my bed would stick out into my new room (I'm hoping to tuck it up against the bay window, hence the sides of the bed create two right-angle triangles with the sides of the window...). And people claim never to use math!

Ech. Went for a run this morning, then loaded heavy boxes into my car, then some stupid bitch from UGA rear-ended me on my way to the new apt! The car is fine, it was a low-speed collision, but my back is a little out of whack and I'm cranky about it. Fortunately, about an hour of lying perfectly flat and a long hot shower later and it seems like it will probably work itself out. Stupid. Bitch. (for about two seconds I wanted to call over the police (she hit me literally 20 feet from the scene of a much more serious accident, so there were cops all over) and make her cry. but then I decided it wasn't worth it)

Anyway. So Anna and I finally picked bedrooms today, and I got the 'front' one, which means I *finally* have the blue room I wanted so much when I was little (but got pink instead!). I'm thinking of painting the bathroom lavender, as a little throwback to Rosenfeld's first apartment (her living room was lavender, and I used to fantasize about dropping out of school and living on the floor of her living room).

I'm almost done with Reading Lolita in Tehran and really wishing that I knew more Iranian history. I wasn't really cognizant during the revolution and the war between Iran and Iraq, and I certainly wasn't watching/reading the news, but for pete's sake, one of my best friends in the third grade was a girl whose family fled the Ayatollah just a couple of years earlier, and yet somehow I have absolutely no knowledge of the situation whatsoever. I feel like I have a memory of hearing about Hussein attacking the Kurds, but that's probably a created memory from all the news stories re-hashing it when we went to war with Iraq. So my earliest realizations that there was even a world over there must have been sixth grade, when we packed boxes for soldiers in the first Gulf War. What a sad state of current affairs knowledge.

I can't decide what to pick up next. I'm leaning toward Rules for Radicals, but am wondering how likely that is to increase my probability of a randomized search on the way to NYC. I could start A Short History of Infinity, but I don't think I'm ready to read about math for pleasure (even if it is written by one of the Daves).

Oh, and when I get back from NYC the address officially changes. I don't know many people who still use my snail mail address, but if you're one of 'em, give me a yell and I'll send you the update. Phone and e-mail and whatnot will stay the same.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

The Good News

Individual contributions do make a difference:
"[six months after the tsnami]... there has been no spike in diarrheal disease, cholera, giardiasis and dysentery. The affected areas have had no increase in malaria or dengue fever - diseases spread by mosquitoes, which breed in standing water. In many places, tsunami survivors living in camps have suffered less from waterborne diseases than countrymen in comparable areas who were not affected.

This was not a case of aid officials exaggerating the peril in a bid to increase donations. Instead, it is a story of aid done right. Governments, international organizations such as Unicef and the World Health Organization, and charities like Oxfam had a head start in India and Sri Lanka, where they have long had trained workers in place to deal with flooding from monsoons. In Aceh, a war zone all but walled off by the Indonesian government, there had been little international presence, yet there was no rise in waterborne diseases.
The safe water campaign was so effective that there are even preliminary indications that it helped to cut down on the annual monsoon death toll this year. Relief workers are now trying to make clean water permanently available in tsunami-affected areas - some of which had no water systems or barely functioning ones before. People worldwide who gave generously to help the victims of the tsunami can be satisfied their money saved lives, and will go on saving them.

And the Bad News

A deal signed between the Sri Lankan government and rebel forces to allocate tsunami relief money has fallen through, and a friend from there says the three-year-old cease-fire agreement may be in jeopardy.

And because it's been a few months since the last time I bitched about our country's (and this administration's) lack of support for our troops:

From bases in Iraq and across the United States to the Pentagon and the military's war colleges, officers and enlisted personnel quietly raise a question for political leaders: if America is truly on a war footing, why is so little sacrifice asked of the nation at large?
Charles Moskos, a professor emeritus at Northwestern University specializing in military sociology, said: "My terminology for it is 'patriotism lite,' and that's what we're experiencing now in both political parties. The political leaders are afraid to ask the public for any real sacrifice, which doesn't speak too highly of the citizenry."

'Patriotism lite.' Yes, that sounds about right. Fly the flag, call people who burn it dirty commies, recite the pledge of allegiance, toss a yellow ribbon on your car, and then wash your hands of the whole mess. Heaven forbid you should trouble your mind about what boys and girls are actually facing over there. Heaven forbid you should drive your SUV a few less miles a week to perhaps slightly reduce our dependency on the oil we're fighting over (oops, clearly I mean, support the liberation!) Heaven forbid you should ask the difficult questions or demand better of our representative government or inconvenience yourself in any way. No, far better simply to applaud the prez, blindly agree to whatever he says, and question the patriotism of those who do otherwise.