Tuesday, March 29, 2011


I woke up at 8am this morning and traveled to Birmingham International Airport. Why? So I could fly to Tampa and attend the 45th annual NCECA (National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts)!!!

I flew Southwest and had a whole row to myself. It was a super short flight though. For the last half hour it felt like my left ear was going to explode. The honey roasted peanuts and diet coke were delicious, though.

My friend Mrs. Teresa picked me up at the airport and we ate PF Chang's (lunch) and Cheddars (dinner) and lollygagged. I had missed her so much and she is always such a joy to be around. I'm staying at the Howard Johnson. This hotel is pretty old school. Especially the gym, where I got in my workout (yay me!). The elliptical looks like its straight out of some 80s work out DVD. Also, when the air conditioner is on it looks like a scared, shaky person is standing behind the curtain. Cre-e-py. I have no fridge or microwave, so it looks like I'm going to be doing a lot of eating out. My diet is screwed. ONLY for this week though. I'll be back with a vengeance when I get home. It's not like I'm going to go eat a Thickburger or anything, I just won't be able to monitor my eating as well.

I think I'm really starting to feel like a grown-up. I know that sounds silly, but it really hit me in the shower. I got on a plane by myself and flew to a strange city alone. I checked into a hotel and unloaded my things and have been maneuvering this city like a real-life-adult. I got a cab by myself (scary story, more later). I'm not saying I'm ready to conquer the world as an adult or anything, but I feel more self-reliant. I've always been able to depend on a parent or boyfriend or teacher or friend to help me do things; but here, today...there was just me. It's unnerving and freeing all at once.

So...cab story. I walked out of the convention center after the exhibition reception was over and I couldn't find the Howard Johnson shuttle. I had Geoffrey on the phone (it makes me feel safer for some reason) and decided I should try to call the hotel. I hung up and while I was searching for the number an guy in a sketchy looking (Hybrid Courtesy Cab) stopped in the middle of the road and rolled down his window and said "Hey, Miss, do you need a ride?" I said no because my first thought was that he was a fake cabbie and was luring me into a trap (there's that small town mindset for you). I said "No thanks!" very shakily and uncertainly. He didn't give up. He told me the shuttles were probably late because of the hockey game and I should ride with him because he's take me to my hotel for free. Now, let me stop here to tell you that I'm the person who screams at people in horror movies and ridicules them for falling into such obvious traps. When it came my time to choose, however, I threw caution to the wind when I heard the word "free." I got in. The cab had all the mileage equipment and looked pretty legit, and the driver seemed nice enough, but I was still on edge. He was driving like a maniac and cursing the shuttle drivers for being late blah blah hockey blah. I was just thinking about how dumb I was and about which one of my keys would make the best defensive weapon. I then realized I didn't have my seatbelt on, so I started fiddling with it. I was shaking really bad and I couldn't figure out where it went, and I think he could tell I was nervous. Just when I started to relax, he asked "Do you have a cell phone?" "AHHHHH!!! He's going to rob me! This is a scam! A trap! What should I say? Can I jump out at the next light?" was what I was thinking. "Yes..." was what I said. He then gve me his cell phone number, told me his name was Harry, and said I should call him if I needed another ride. I looked out the window and we were in the circular drive of the Howard Johnson. I tipped him five bucks.

I googled it when I got to my room. Turns out Courtesy Cabs is a service of University of Tampa intended to promote student safety. Of course it is. I've never felt more naive.

Anyway, here are some of the pictures I've taken so far. Many more to come, hopefully!

This person's work was so clean. Excellent craftsmanship and form.

One of the display walls in the gallery space. Sorry for the blur, I was making an attempt at covertness.

Hanging faces

Tom Coleman, Elaine Coleman's husband's work.

Cute cups with nice glazes. Yellow?!?

ELAINE COLEMAN?!? I touched this...

And this...


Lovely work. Some of it looked screen printed.

Yummy glaze.

Really yummy glaze.

Above the clouds.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

In My Opinion....

Yesterday I gained 1.2 pounds. Probably because I forgot to workout on Monday. Getting back into the swing of things after spring break while still trying to follow this diet can be stressful, especially when the hard work doesn't pay off. I knew there would be days when I gain instead of lose, but I guess I just didn't expect them to come so soon. I am happy to say I haven't had any crazy eating splurges, and haven't not worked out just because I didn't feel up to it. I also lost a pound of that 1.2. There's always a bright side. Geoffrey says if you do something for three weeks, it becomes a habit. I have 1 2/3 of a week left!

In other news, I have a to do list a mile long, and too much of it is busy work. I'd rather work for hours on one thing than run around for an hour doing tiny errands. And I hate having to communicate with people. Calling to check on this or talking to this person in such and such office to do that, it's just obnoxious. Especially when the last thing those people want to do is help you out. So many people are perpetually grumpy and seem to hate their jobs. I hope I never turn into that person.

I've started reading a new series. Geoffrey is reading The Dark Tower Series by Stephen King, and I bought the first book Monday. I'm on page 17 and it hasn't really spiked my interest yet, but I'm not ready to give it up. Stephen King gets a lot of crap because so many of his books have cult followers. As soon as everyone likes something, it's no longer "cool." I did a paper on this Freshman year...very interesting. Anyway...people accuse him now of starting a book with a movie in mind. I'm sure the thought is in the back of his mind somewhere, but mostly I think people need to lay off. The man knows how to tell a story, and that's all that's important to me.

I just finished this book, and I have to say I really enjoyed it. The main character is suffering through many issues that I think are very relevant to college students, though in the story he is only in high school. He describes those things you have to do that keep creeping into your mind (like running those damn errands) as "tentacles" and I can't think of a better word. I also like the way Ned Vizzini writes, except for one little thing. Instead of saying "he said" or someting after a quote, he does this:
"I really want to go to the movies," she was like.
SO obnoxious.

The book was also made into a film starring Zach Galifianakis, Emma Roberts, and some other guy no one's heard of (Keir Gilchrist). I watched it and it followed the book fairly well and I would recommend it as well.

Well, time to close the gallery and then get dinner, go to class, workout, and finally...SLEEP.

Monday, March 21, 2011


For those of you who don't know, I've started what I'm calling a "for-real-this-time" diet. I've already lost 7.2 lbs, but I'm far from my goal weight. I know I can do this, and I've started to really see it as a challenge or a competition between the two aspects of my personality. The healthy one will win this time. My only issue now that I'm back from spring break is figuring out what my eating schedule will be. My classes and gallery shifts are at such off the wall times I don't know where to squeeze in the extra time for healthy meals and workouts. I SHOULD wake up early and eat a good breakfast, pack a lunch, and go to the gym, but I am not a morning person. At all.

Also, today when I left my house there was a light dusting of POLLEN on everyone's car!! Even though I hate the allergy issues that come with pollen, I was just excited to see a truly tangible sign of spring! I'm ready for warm weather and camping and the lake and slightly more stress-free summer classes. Hell, I'm just excited to feel the sun on my face!

So in honor of spring's coming, I'll tell you my favorite things about spring...

Dogwoods are in bloom.

Lake Tuscaloosa.

Summer Snow. Tiger Blood all the way.

Camping. Though since I'm going with an eagle scout, it probably won't look this. Bear Grills would not approve.

Gorgeous dresses like this one found here.

Sandals like these. I love gladiators!

And finally...

Being a few months closer to getting one of these babies!
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