An example of a fortune teller. (But not ours... couldn't get a good picture of it.)

At Nuku two weeks ago, Diane and I submitted a “fortune teller” for the origami contest. These were all the craze when we were in elementary school. I was surprised that I actually remembered how to make one. Diane and I then wrote all the fortunes in haiku. I thought I’d share them all with you… Warning: These are a bit pessimistic, symbolizing my general lack of belief in the legitimacy of fortune-telling. (I can’t say why Diane is so pessimistic; however, she did write the only happy fortune–the first one below.)

Your future is bright.
Happiness is within reach.
Go out and grab it!

Superman you are not
You shouldn’t have lifted that
Dresser by yourself.

That library book
Was due fifteen weeks ago.
Say the dog ate it.

What is your question?
It doesn’t really matter;
Fortunes are for shit.

No good news for you.
Why did you wake up today?
Just go back to bed.

One million dollars
You will not receive. Sorry.
Ain’t no free lunches.

Mr. Right is near.
But, alas, not here. So keep
The search going, dear.

Your dog has rabies;
Your cat ate your goldfish.
You shouldn’t own pets.

Well, you have to give us credit. We wrote all these in five minutes. I didn’t say they were life-changing. They’re just kind of cute. Unfortunately, our ingenuity did not win us one of the nifty journals nor the hot chocolate mixes they had as door prizes…

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BSG Haiku, Season 4 Episode 16

The lesson here, folks, is that boring, long meetings without access to my computer yields BSG haiku doodled on notepads while the developers argue over code….

Gaius plays Jesus
But culls his harem with guns
To thwart Aries’ Sons.

The Final Five fight
About frakking the humans
Even Chief agrees.

Liam’s death–pointless
Like Padme’s end in Star Wars
Love’s lack kills? Cheesy!

Conspiracy theories

A rocket to study global warming goes down after launch… hmmm… suspicious? I think not! Were I a conspiracy theorist, which I am not, I might say that this is a “Right-Wing Conspiracy.” I’m sure my husband and I would have had a secret chuckle about this recent installment of the Right-Wing Conspiracy. It was our favorite answer to anything that apparently thwarted a liberal cause.

We had a joke about this concerning birth control. He used to say that the Right Wing–in the form of my OBGYN–was lying to me about the effectiveness of my birth control in order to trap me into pregnancy so that I would meet their supposed agenda of reducing all feminists to being barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen. Because, you see, the Right Wing is obviously anti-feminist and all family-oriented.

Of course, he was joking. And I’m only being tongue-in-cheek about the rocket. But, still, I did watch The X-Files all throughout college, leaving me with a naturally suspicious mind. So I’m always looking for those Right Wing Conspiracies even if I don’t really believe in the conspiracies I, or anyone else, invent. But you never know. The truth is out there.

One more Battlestar Haiku

Inspired while listening to the Galactica Forum–a great podcast I found that discusses the episodes of Battlestar Galactica each week–I came up with yet another haiku.

What will Ellen do?
When she learns Six is with child,
Cat fight! Meow! Hiss!

Poor Saul and the dangerous women with whom he “comingles.”

By the way, an interesting tidbit I just read online is that Saul was named for Paul of Tarsas (Biblical reference, yes) because like he used to persecute the Cylons until he found he was one, much like Paul’s former persecution of Christians until he converted. I’m sure I don’t need to remind you insightful people out there that Paul of Tarsus was named Saul until he converted to Christianity.

Woo-hoo. I feel so smart now. My meager Christian knowledge sailed me through that comparison. But don’t ask me to explain anymore than that, for my claims to seeing the similarities between Saul Tigh and Paul of Tarsas end there. You more-read and devout Christians, if BSG fans, can fill in the rest of the details.

Anyway, I’m guessing this is the character Ron Moore claims he had always planned to be one of the Final Five Cylons.

Even more Battlestar Galactica Haiku

Especially for Joanna, new BSG haiku reflecting last week’s episode:

Cavill and Daniel
Cain and Abel enacted;
Glaring metaphor.

Woe is Kara Thrace!
Doesn’t know who she is, and
Anders can’t tell her.

Who mourns for Cavill?
Mad, jealous son of a bitch–
I mean, Ellen Tigh.

Apollo, VP
Roslin is ready to croak.
Let the people vote!


Remember sniglets? This was a term coined by comedian Rich Hall in an old HBO show from the 1980s called Not Necessarily the News, which if memory serves, was a lot like what The Daily Show is today only without all that ever-lovable 1980s cheese and corny-ness. As Hall defined them, sniglets are words that “don’t appear in the dictionary but should.” I was young when my parents used to watch the show, but I’ve always been very aware of language and sound. I loved to invent my own words for sounds. I still love to invent my own words. I feel I’ve been given license to do so with my English degree.

Anyway, in a meeting yesterday at work, I coined my own sniglet: disfingeration, the misalignment of your fingers on the computer keyboard that causes you to type an almost patterned gibberish. For example, the result of moving your right hand slightly to the left of the keyboard, keeping your fingers in the “correct” keyboarding positions: /cine frin nars. (Translation: [Shift] I come from mars.)

I am thinking of it as a combination of the words “disfigured” (which describes how your text looks when you finally look up what you’ve typed on the screen) and “finger” which is actually what is causing the problem. Also, don’t forget that “dis” harkens to “dislocation,” which is what your fingers do. Admit it–it’s just a great new word.

The new word was inspired by the guy who fell victim to disfingeration while his computer screen was projected on the meeting room wall. The term came to me on the fly, which is really rare as my comedic “genius” is usually not quite so impromptu. I suppose everyone catches a break now and then. My co-workers seemed to agree that it was a fitting name. I hope it catches on!

Mars Girl strikes again!

I’m becoming slightly worried by the fact that I’m literally becoming known around town, and the cycling community, as Mars Girl in lieu of my real name. You might be thinking, “Is that not what you want? You’ve got vanity plates with that name? Your email address, cell phone screen’s banner, and blog all reference ‘Mars Girl.’ What are you complaining about?”

Well, I’m not complaining, really. I’m slightly bemused. I’m only worried when I consider how people might perceive my mental state. Which has never been a worry, really, because I’d rather be known as eccentric than mainstream. In my mind, eccentric equates to “exciting” while mainstream equates to “boring.” So while eccentric has some negative connotations to it (i.e., “slightly off her rocker”), it’s better than being known as “stick in the mud.”

I bring this up because I’ve been to my favorite bicycle shop, Century Cycles in Peninsula, three times in the last two weeks for various reasons and, oddly enough, have found myself referred to as Mars Girl by the employees.

The first time, a few weeks ago, I was in there to buy a pair of winter bike leggings when I’d received a 15% off clothing coupon from them. After I completed my transaction, the guy working the register that day (I believe it was Kevin?), asked, “Are you Mars Girl?”

I had to stifle my shock. He explained that my blog occasionally comes up on a Google alert he set up to locate articles with the words “cycling” and “Ohio” in them. It sure made me rethink, briefly, some of the things I write about on this blog (not all of them cycling related). Again, the fear of being deemed a little unstable by people I see IRL (in real life).

So, I was in Century Cycles again this afternoon–this time, to pick up a second Giant jersey, which is on sale right now, for Michael. Brent was there today and as he took down my phone number (because he had to retrieve the jersey in the appropriate size from another store) he asked me to confirm the first letter of my last name. After I told him, he smiled and said, “Well, we usually refer to you as Mars Girl.”


Who knew I’d gain such notoriety using a pseudonym? It’s like I have this alter ego. Like Clark Kent and Superman, I’m Heidi E and Mars Girl! I have to be sure that Mars Girl does not partake in any nefarious activities to ruin her superhero reputation. Keep her away from the wine and the Dortmunder Gold, please!

If I’m a superhero, what is my power? Hmmm…. Please no references to the pen being mightier than the sword. Or the keyboard being deadlier than the… um… gun?

But seriously, all, I’m both baffled and humbled by this newfound celebrity. Really, I am. I’m just a cycling geek/ski enthusiast/red wine aficionado/world traveler/lover of life who enjoys hearing herself talk by writing about her passions (for everything, as my banner proclaims). I’d probably continue to write even if no one read a single word. I can’t stop myself. Maybe it is my super power…

Well. The vanity plates probably help gain recognition. So it doesn’t mean I’m known because of my blog. I’m just known because I’m Mars Girl, I guess. Maybe if I do ever publish something, I should write under that moniker.

One for child services

My aunt Gabriella, Cousin Angy’s mom, just sent an email filled with pictures of my new “first cousin once removed” aka My Favorite Female Cousin’s New Son, Grayson Martin. Is this not a most blatant example of child abuse? Please tell me that if I ever have kids, I would not subject them to such torturous use of photography… Is it not bad enough that the clothes we consider “cool” right now will be outdated by the time our progeny grow up, causing them to voice disgust with how we dressed them (not unlike the brightly colored and grossly mismatched 1970s style clothes I’m wearing in many, many of my childhood pictures). I truly think this is why we rebel against our parents!

Can you see the shame in his eyes? He’s just screaming, “Mom, why did you put me in a little Santa suit? I’m helpless and can’t dress myself, and now look what you’ve done to me! Fodder for embarrassment when you show this to future girlfriends to whom I’m tried to present a ‘cool’ and ‘dignified’ image. Oh, the humanity of it!”

Okay, I admit that he is a cute little bugger. Maybe he won’t be too mad at his mom and grandma some day. But if he needs some solace from the shame, he can come to Aunt Mars Girl. I will understand.