Monday, December 14, 2009

on excessive bodily fumes

I don't want to sound mean, but I rather feel the need to vent about the obnoxiously pungent odor emanating from somewhere in the desk pod behind mine. I'm not sure of the perpetrator, but I'm strongly considering leaving fun-size deodorant on all four of said desks simply because I'm fed up with feeling the incessant nasal sting of other people's body funk.

There is a common courtesy that most normal people in the workplace observe, and that courtesy is known as good personal hygiene. I know this sounds like a lot to ask for- I mean, my GOD, washing your armpits is such a chore- but if I had one wish, it would be that all who read this take both heed of my words and a long, hot bath.

Paraphrased from wikiHow, here are six steps to smelling good all day:

1. Take a bath in the morning. Nothing beats the cold rush of water that instantly awakes you and washes your sleepiness away. If you want to smell good, your shampoo and soap must also smell good. Wash your face too and dry up with a clean, fluffy towel.

2. Apply deodorant and antiperspirant. If you have hyperhydrosis (that's medspeak for excessive sweating), use something like Driclor or CertainDri.

3. Spray on your favorite scent. Splash your cologne all over yourself. If it's perfume, spray it on the pulse points (on your neck, behind your ears, on your wrist).

4. Spray perfume on your clothes.

5. Be ready with a beauty kit. Stack on these must-brings to save you from sweat and odor:
# Tissue wipes – use this to wipe up any grease or odor from your body.
# Powder – apply on hair (blondes) or body to feel refreshed and absorb sweat.
# Cologne – baby colognes works best to cover up any smell.
# Mints – have no time for brushing? Stack on some mints to avoid bad breath.
# Brush and hair serum – for that bad hair day to go away!
# Oil blotting paper – to wipe all the grease on your face.
# Hair deodorizer - spray it on your hair to cover up the hideous smell of sweat.
# extra shirt - in case you really get smelly.
# deodorant - make sure it is small so you can freshen you anywhere.

6. Excuse yourself and go to the nearest restroom to freshen up. It is best when you're alone.

a little background music, part IV

Part IV: Me, myself, and some loose change

[no picture because my face is obviously sitting right on the sidebar]

Erin E. Brooks [the E, they say, is short for Efram, or maybe Emily] is a 21-year-old folk pianist/saxophonist for the band Freezing in the Midwest. She is currently an Asian Studies major at Bowling Green State University, with hopes of becoming either a translator (as she speaks Spanish and Japanese) or a professor with specialization in Asian Studies. For more information, read her profile because she's kind of a lazy bastard when it comes to information provided elsewhere.

a little background music, part III

Part III: Locations

HOME: The lovely (if a little less than spacious) apartment that Sean and I share with our cats. It's cozy without being cramped, and exudes a happy, welcoming vibe to all who enter.

WORK: Page Plus Cellular, a prepaid wireless service. I work as a customer service/tech support representative, spending hours upon hours listening to complaints that are, at least 90 percent of the time, completely the fault of the customer. However, said neanderthals provide me with a job and a paycheck, so far be it from me to complain.

a little background music, part II

Part II: The kitties

Three cats claim residence in our very collegiate-styled one-bedroom apartment: Soviet, Kremlin, and Khruschev. All three are rescue cats; the first two from outside, Khruschev from a friend who was going to send her to the Humane Society, where she would likely have been euthanized.

SOVIET [Russian: Совет] is a 3-year-old Persian mix with mostly gray coloring and a few strawberry-blond patches. Her most distinguishing feature is the irregular hair growth pattern she exhibits, making her look somewhat like a miniature lion (tail poof and everything). She is a very temperamental and fussy cat. She is very fond of us (especially Sean; she's definitely a daddy's girl), but will attack anyone else on Sean's command. Soviet loves having her personal space, but is under constant threat of pestering from Kremlin, one of her younger counterparts.

KREMLIN [Russian: Кремль], also affectionately known as "Gremlin," "Monster Cat," or "Insanokitty," is a 5-month-old kitty mutt with equal parts black and white coloring. She is most definitely a mama's girl, as she has a habit of waking me each morning by shoving her head under my chin and demanding attention. Kremlin is, by definition, batshit insane, but we still love her. She has a tendency to run wildly around the house and clumsily bump into almost everything, as well as a penchant for leaping from tables onto the back of the ever-unsuspecting Soviet. She makes a half-purring sort of noise that indicates whenever she's in the mood to play/be a crazy bastard.

KHRUSCHEV [Russian: (Никита Сергеевич) Хрущёв], as one would imagine, is named for former Soviet leader Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev. The newest addition to the Brooks/Loizou household, Khruschev is a 6-month-old kitty mutt who is mostly black, save for a few white hairs on her chest. She is still very shy and trying to adapt to her new surroundings. She is very leery of being picked up and held, but is extremely friendly and loves being scratched behind her ears. The other cats seem to be taking a liking to her, so I'm hoping with that with some time and TLC, she'll start to blossom a little more.

a little background music, part I

This is the first in a series of blogs I will be posting to give any readers a little character background on the people/places/things I'll be writing about.

Part I : Sean W. Loizou

[Photo taken 24 Sept 2009, Weakerthans concert, Detroit, MI]

Sean (age 21) is my wonderful, sweet, Cypriot/communist/hippie boyfriend. He is currently a European history major at Monroe County Community College, with plans to finish his BA at the University of Toledo. His main interests include European history (specifically, WWII and Russia), playing his guitar (quite skillfully, I might add), listening to all manner of black metal and folk music, and doing goofball things to me to show his appreciation and love. We've been dating since 25 September 2008 and it's been nothing short of amazing.

The main reason we get along so well? Communication, plain and simple. When we fight, we talk it out. We share our opinions, thoughts, and feelings without fear of rejection. I have had deeper and more philosophical conversations with him than anyone else I know. He encourages me to expand my mind and think critically about situations. We help each other to think about the reasons behind our actions, and we always express our love for each other. I'm easily one of the luckiest girls in the world because of this. To top it off, we've been living together for a year now and it's never really been stressful or annoying- it just feels natural.

Suffice to say, we are incredibly in sync and almost always on the same wavelength. He's my other half and I can hardly wait until there's just one last name on our mailbox. :]

The Hazards of Love, Part II (Wager All) - The Decemberists

This is one of my most favorite Decemberists songs. It is from their newest album, but they've stayed true to their very unique and enchanting style even after being signed to a major record label. Both their vocal and instrumental styles are chock full of soul and emotion; beautiful and almost haunting at times. This song in particular exemplifies the Decemberists' magic.

So, without further ado, here are the lyrics (which means you should go check out the song, hint hint.)

And here I am
Softer than a shower
And here I am
To garland you with flowers

I’ll lay you down in clover bed
The stars, a roof above our heads

And all my life
I’ve never felt the tremor
And all my life
That now disturbs my fingers

I’ll lay you down in clover bed
The stars, a roof above our heads
And we’ll lie 'til the corncrake crows
Bereft the weight of our summer clothes

And I’ll wager all
The Hazards of Love
The Hazards of Love

And take my hand
And cradle it in your hand
And take my hand
To feel the pull of quicksand

I’ll lay you down in clover bed
The stars, a roof above our heads
And we’ll lie 'til the corncrake crows
Bereft the weight of our summer clothes

And I’ll wager all
The Hazards of Love
The Hazards of Love

Saturday, December 12, 2009

on being just a little starstruck

I recently purchased an item from the Decemberists' online shop for a friend as a Christmas present. I was previously unaware that with each order, the enclosed packing slip is signed by none other than Colin Meloy himself. I verified this via Google search (and image search to match the handwriting!)

Now, being that the Decemberists are one of my most favorite bands, naturally I about peed my pants when I came to this realization.

Suffice to say, this more than made my day. <3333

Friday, December 11, 2009

sakura, sakura

This is a traditional Japanese song originally composed to help students learn to play the koto [also pictured above]. It has been rewritten and remixed a countless number of times by a million different artists, but somehow still seems to retain its simple beauty no matter the instrumental medium.

The romanized Japanese lyrics are below [since for some reason my work computer refuses to support Japanese language fonts], followed by an English translation:

sakura sakura
no-yama mo sato mo
mi-watasu kagiri
kasumi ka kumo ka
asahi ni niou
sakura sakura

sakura sakura
yayoi no sora wa
mi-watasu kagiri
kasumi ka kumo ka
nioi zo izuru
iza ya iza ya
mi ni yukan

Cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms,
On Meadow-hills and mountains
As far as you can see.
Is it a mist, or clouds?
Fragrant in the morning sun.
Cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms,
Flowers in full bloom.

Cherry blossoms, cherry blossoms,
Across the Spring sky,
As far as you can see.
Is it a mist, or clouds?
Fragrant in the air.
Come now, come,
Let’s look, at last!

Thursday, December 10, 2009



...I hate people.

I had a customer call in today with what I'm pretty sure may have been one of the more asinine issues I've dealt with to date. He bought an old Verizon phone and simply dialed the programming number onto it and expected it to work- WITHOUT CALLING PAGE PLUS TO GET A PAGE PLUS NUMBER.

He then tried to add a minute card to said phone, but when he did, the prompt told him to please hold for a customer service rep, which he incorrectly assumed meant that the card was added to the phone. What actually happened was that since, again, he did not have a Page Plus number, the card did not add, which is why he was being transferred to customer service in the first place.

Now, even a complete troglodyte would probably, at this point, wait to find out why he was being transferred to customer service, since this would generally indicate to anything but an entirely infantile mind that there is something WRONG (which there was). Not so for this gem of the human race. He simply assumed that the card had been applied, THREW AWAY THE MINUTE CARD AND THE PHONE PACKAGING, and tried to use the phone, which did not work, because (AGAIN) the card could not be added to a non-Page Plus number.

Genius boy then proceeded to call customer service and very nastily tell a different customer service representative what happened, to no avail, since we are not authorized to give handouts at all (much less to arrogant morons brought down by their own stupidity). When the other rep let him off the phone, he called back, which is how our paths intersected. After a good 10 minutes of said customer giving me lousy roundabout explanations, I finally got the full story out of him. When I explained to him that there was nothing I could do to help him, he proceeded to inform me that I was stupid and rude and he wanted to talk to my supervisor. I told him that my supervisor would tell him the same thing, but he insisted on being transferred. I was really just glad to be rid of him, so I obliged after alerting my supervisor to the horror that was about to befall her.

I just don't understand how some people can be so infallibly idiotic. It kind of hurts. I hate to sound elitist or anything, but come ON, man. There's a limit to the level of stupidity I can handle.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

modest mouse-parting of the sensory

As of late, I constantly find myself more and more in love with this song. Modest Mouse has always really hit home for me as far as lyrics go, but this particular song is a wallop in the face. The part that gets me the most is the end; the repetition and slight alteration of the phrase "Someday you will die somehow and something's gonna steal your carbon."
Suffice to say, artists with both the talent and the understanding of life and human emotion that MM possess are very, very few and thousands of miles between.

Parting of the Sensory - Modest Mouse

There's no work in walking in to fuel the talk
I would grab my shoes and then away I'd walk
Through all the stubborn beauty I start at the dawn
Until the sun had fully stopped
Never walking away from
Just a way to pull apart
Dehydrate back into minerals
A life long walk to the same exact spot

Carbon's anniversary
The parting of the sensory
Old old mystery
The parting of the sensory

Who the hell made you the boss?
We placed our chips in all the right spots
But still lost
Any shithead who had ever walked
Could take the ship and do a much finer job
This fit like clothes made out of wasps
Aw, fuck it I guess I lost

The parting of the sensory
Carbon's anniversary
Just part it again if you please
Carbon's anniversary

Who the hell made you the boss
If you say what to do I know what not to stop
If you were the ship then who would ever get on
The weather changed it for the worse
And came down on us like it had been rehearsed
And like we hope, but change will surely come
And be awful for most but really good for some
I took a trip to the exact same spot
We pulled the trigger, but we forgot to cock
And every single shot

Aw, fuck it I guess we lost

Some day you will die and
Somehow something's going to steal your carbon

Some day you will die and
Somehow something's going to steal your carbon

Well some day you will die somehow and
Something's going to steal your carbon

Some day you will die and
Someone or something will steal your carbon

Some day something will die and
Somehow you'll figure out how
Often you will die somehow and
Something's going to steal your carbon

Well some day you will die somehow and
Something's going to steal your carbon

the thing is

Diferente de la mayoridad de las personas aquí, no puedo ver yo mismo trabajando aquí para el resto de mi vida. Muchas personas estan contentas en quedándose en este trabajo para años y años y años. Yo no pienso que lo podría hacer. Me ponería loquísima. No podría quedarme en un trabajo que no me llevará fuera de Toledo.

A veces, me pongo nerviosa porque tengo miedo en que no poderé terminar mis estudios en la universidad. Me siento estúpida y pequeña. Me siento que no tengo la fuerza de obtener las cosas que quiero en mi vida.

También, tengo miedo en que mi novio nunca va a obtener trabajo ni terminar su propia educación. Le amo muchísimo, pero tengo mucho miedo. ¿Qué pasará cuando tenemos niños? ¿Continuará él haciendo nada excepto que fumando y tocando su guitarra?

Yo no sé que hacer. Como dije, le amo con todo mi corazón. Yo nunca querría irme de su lado. Me pongo muy deprimida cada vez que lo pienso. Yo he llorado mucho sobre esto, y he pasado muchas noches sin sueño pensando para horas y horas.

No sé. Pienso que solo estoy hablando sin punta. No me importa a mi tan mucho.

Monday, December 7, 2009

yo tengo ganas de...

...correr por la sala.
yo estoy tan aburrida que no sé que hacer.
este trabajo me pone muy loca.
podría gritar ahora mismo.

yo necesito una bebida o algo similar.

"diga a ellos como estoy desacatando la gravidad..."
(tengo las canciones del musical "Wicked" quedándose en mi cabeza...)


yo he estado en la misma llamada para UNA HORA.
nuestros llamadas deben ser mas o menos tres MINUTOS.
matame por favor.

Friday, December 4, 2009


I should never have complained about the background music at work. It has now switched over to Christmas music, which I hate more than superAIDS.
And I hate superAIDS a lot.

On another note, I am officially re-enrolled at BGSU and will be starting classes on 11 Jan 2010. Hooray for getting out of the life-wasting cycle. :D

Class schedule is as follows:

ETHN 1010- M/W 8A-9:15A
SOC 1010- M/W/F 9:30A-10:20A
GEOG 1210- M/W/F 1:30P-2:20P
PHIL 3210- M/W/F 2:30P-3:20P

annnd work 5P-10P every day except Tuesday and Sunday.

Busy busy busy.
I guess that's a good thing though. I need something to keep me occupied.
Now to find a car...
(if anyone knows where I can find a cheap, running car, please let me know...)