Friday, July 27, 2012

Snapshots from a happy life

You know you're a history nerd when you spend the entire time you're watching historical documentaries talking back to the TV. If you're me, you're doing so with not only an elevated level of snark, but with an air of self-congratulatory superiority for actually remembering (albeit vaguely) learning the key points of that subject before. Just now, for instance, I signed wistfully and said "Ah, the Smoot-Hawley Tariff," as if I'd been personally involved, or had some great memory about "the good old days." Well, if the good old days were second semester AP US History ....

No, that would just be sad.

Anyway, this week I've been reedumacating myself by watching Netflix documentaries, mostly PBS or National Geographic-funded. I've tried to choose shows about Presidents who were kind of forgotten by history, or didn't have such a good reputation by the time they left office, and this has been cool because they skip over that stuff in school, too. This week I've watched documentaries about Harry Truman, LBJ ("el bj"), Reagan (the exception to the rule) & now Herbert Hoover. All, actually, were unlikely candidates for President, and almost all of them were ill-suited to the job. And damn, the Truman one was just sad; all the people who knew him or had spoken to people who knew him seemed to share the opinion that he was really boring & mostly failed at everything he did until he was 40.

Then again, he had no idea that we were even developing a nuclear weapon until FDR died. For real. That's really messed up, in my opinion. Way to prep the new guy.

OMG. Hoover worked for Truman?! Wow. I honestly did not know that. How precious and cool.

Truly, the best part about these documentaries is that they keep it real. There's no mystique behind a Hoover, or a Truman, or an LBJ, or even a Carter (which I can't even bring myself to watch yet). People don't hesitate to be hilariously ruthless in their character assassinations when it was a bad President who is dead already. For instance: "Hoover will continue to fade away and out of history."
BURN!!! It's almost worth making a drinking game....

Anyway, I digress.

This weekend is going to be very busy—we're doing a photo shoot in Oakland tomorrow, and on Sunday morning I'm running a 5k early in the morning. Overwhelmed! Plus we're still on the fast, of course ... today is day 6. I've lost 3 pounds so far. Note: weight loss is not my goal. I'm just really curious to see how much weight I lose, since at least one person in my life seems to be paranoid that I'm starving myself (and for once, it's not a parent!). I must say, though, that while the major downside of this fast so far is that I am terminally hungry, the upside is that my innards feel great. I won't get TMI on you here, so we'll leave it at that, but I do feel more balanced, if that makes sense.

Not mentally balanced.

Just in case that wasn't clear. 

So, on that note ... please enjoy some snapshots from the last week. It went fast & had sunny afternoons, and I got to walk through several plots of freshly mowed grass. Cool.

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I learned on Jeopardy tonight that Cirrus clouds are named after a oft-forgotten Greek dude named Cirrus. Cool!
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My happy place. Also? Amazing that my camera app registers depth of field
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The idyllic garden at Crossroads Cafe
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UC Berkeley, looking down Addison Street on a hazy afternoon
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UC Berkeley ... so beautiful. Seriously. I am spoiled.
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Strawberry Creek // UC Berkeley
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My favorite spot on campus. So idyllic. 
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People kept mistaking me for a Giants fan. My feet were cold! :/
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The outfit. The reason why orange socks were very appropriate. Also? A little more neon than I'd anticipated.
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Delancey Street -- an old building that may have survived the 1906 earthquake
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back to my happy place ;)
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Port of Oakland, 7am // "urban wasteland" (remember those raves....?)
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Outside Goat Hill Pizza, the night before we started the fast. 
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Fridge on Saturday night. 
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The Cheese Stands Alone // 24th Street Mission BART station
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Swiss Chard
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Blueberries!

I hope everyone reading this has a truly wonderful weekend. I will be getting my juice on, so please, eat some really, really good brunches in my honor. 

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