Mighty Girl
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contact: maggie at mightygirl dot net

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My first article in a series on etiquette for the Morning News.

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J: I've only ever gotten two tickets.
Me: Tell the speeding one.
J: It was bad.
Me: What were you doing?
J: I was going 92 in a 55.
R: Jesus.
J: And I talked back to the cop.
Me: Why?
J: He was just going on and on about how I could've killed someone. You know?
R: What did you say?
J: I said, "Just give me the ticket."
Me: Whoa.
J: I was in a hurry.
Me: Where were you going?
J: To yoga.

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Scenario: Two recent high school graduates run into each other on the bus.
Characters: One tall guy with dirty hair, one short stout guy with a buzz cut.

Hey man!
How you doin'?
Good, man.
I haven't seen you since like, since like graduation.
What are you doin' now?
You know, same ol'.
Yeah, but what are you up to?
Same ol'.
But what is same ol'?
That's cool.
'Member the cafeteria?
Yeah man.
When I was working at the cafeteria, I used to hella hustle.
That was hella tight.
Yeah. Now that I'm a grown up, I don’t steal no more.
'Member the Arizonas?
Yeah! I used to be like, one in both my pockets, one up my arm. I'd be like, want one? Two bucks!
You made hella cash.
That was hella tight.
Remember the mango ones?
Yeah! Those were good.
Frosh and sophomore years were cool. Then junior and senior year sucked.
Hella sucked.
I like the real world though.
Not me. I like high school because of all the girls. I was in ROTC. 'Member Ingrid?
Yeah. But I like the real world better.
(tension mounting) Yeah. I like high school.
'Member Anthony?
Ten years from now, I'm all, "Hey Anthony!" Here's Anthony, "Who are you?"
(laughing) Yeah.
Do you ever talk to Anthony?
(coldly) I got no reason to talk to Anthony.
Yeah. He was talkin' shit about you.
Fuck that.
Yeah. Fuck that too.
'Member when I went in his house and took his wrestling thing?
(laughing) He was hella pissed.
Took his dog too. Starving ass dog.
That was his mom's dog, right?
He was like, "What were you doing in my house?" And I'm like, "What? I practically live here! I'm practically your cousin!"
He was like all, "I'm gonna sue!"
(laughing) Yeah.
I had a friend who was a security guard and he got all hassled by his boss. He shoulda sued.
Like, sexual harassment?
No, just like he was a dick you know? So he quit.
Don't quit! Sue.
This is America, man. It's like capital of lawsuits.
Yeah like, touch my leg.
(Touches friend's leg)
Now I could hella sue you for that. I would sue and get like $100. But I'd have to pay my lawyers too.
It's not worth it, I guess.

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7.23.02 GOOD DAY
A big group of seniors got on the bus, I think they were going down to visit Fisherman's Wharf. About fifteen commuters quietly got up from their seats and went to stand in the back.

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This is a link to a kitty-cat singing a love song with a gigantic bouncing-heart backdrop. You must click on it.

Wrote a review of K-19: The Widowmaker, which I highly recommend if you enjoy young, muscular men in tight quarters. Hooray for war movies.

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Go read her July 13 post about her dad at sarahheppola.com. Then read the rest of her site. Sarah is extra keen. Here's an excerpt:

“So when I get to Michigan,” I said, tearing some bread, “I thought I might spend some time in Detroit.” Sometimes, when I am talking in a restaurant, I like to tear things. A paper napkin. The sweaty label of a beer bottle. I tear these things into pieces and put them in a pile of little white wads on the table. When there is nothing left to tear and wad, I arrange the pile in different shapes. A circle. A square. An S, for Sarah. Tonight, I am breaking up pieces of crust in front of me. If you listen closely, you can hear the tiny clicks of my fingernail on the plate. “So anyway, I thought we might talk a little bit about Detroit –“
”You should talk to your aunt.” My Dad tears off some bread.
“Okay,” I say (click click), “but I thought maybe you and I could talk.”
“Talk to your aunt.”
The clicks become louder and more frequent. “Did you not grow up in Detroit?” I ask.
He waves his hand. “Eh.” And then he laughs. It’s such a mystery to me, my father’s laugh. “I mean, she’s the one who lives there and –“
”I’ll call my aunt.” Later, I will wonder why I can’t stop crying about this, but for now, I brush my hands off and put them in my lap.
The waiter appears. “Would you like something to drink?” he asks.
We answer at once: “Yes.”

Went to a They Might Be Giants concert last night at the Fillmore. Everyone bounced madly and sang along. THESUNISAMASSOFINCANDESCENTGAS.
My life is officially a Passat commercial.

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7.17.02 DROOL TOOL
Ohhh. Little rabbit grabs cursor. Silly rabbit.
(via Dequeued)

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My first piece for Filmcritic.com is up. It's a review of Nijinsky. Nijinsky is a bad movie.

I also wrote a CD review of Exo's "Say Hello to the Master Siege Control" for the Morning News. The premise for these reviews is that one of the contributing editors picks something they love, and the other three people have to say what they think too. Therefore, it's a long-ass CD review. If you're an impatient sort, I'm buried at the bottom, so scroll down.

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Sacramento seems to have an unusually high incidence of people expressing life views via bumper sticker: AA Is the Way, Jesus Is Lord and Savior, The Unborn Are Children Too. After a few hours of bumper gazing, I came across my favorite. It was a cartoon drawing of a monkey that read, "I fling poo."

San Francisco is quiet on a Saturday morning at 7 a.m. Driving around, I saw a street sweeper, an ambulance driver, a woman lifting her bucket of cleaning supplies from the trunk. There are only a few people up this early on a weekend, and they're the ones who make the world go. That means the majority of us are bystanders in the process.

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7.11.02 SPOOKY
"Our Town", my latest piece for the Morning News, is a creepy article about real towns where weird stuff happens. I came across a few odd things while researching the article. None of them were quite right for the piece, but they were cool nonetheless.

For example, the Bonne Terre Mine in Missouri fell into disuse in 1962. Groundwater flooded the tunnels, and today they're open to divers who swim down to see old train tracks and carts, steam-powered jackhammers, and abandoned mining equipment.

An old missile silo in Texas is another attraction for divers. The once top-secret underground bunker used to contain nuclear weapons, but the concrete silo now contains a quiet well of groundwater. Divers enter the complex by descending a long staircase, passing through several blast doors and the launch control bunker, and entering a tunnel that leads them to the silo. From there they enter the deep pool of water, which is 52 feet wide. A pile of metal debris and the missile control station wait below, 18 stories underwater.

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Our relationship in ten seconds:

Me: I'm going to go look at magazines.
Him: I'm going to go look at beer.

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I'm going to start doing reviews for filmcritic.com. Unfortunately, filmcritic.com is ugly. I had the following conversation with Chris:

Dude, your site is ugga-ugga.
No it's not!
It's mauve. With yellow type.
It's burgundy. It's not ugly.
What is this font?
It's all messed up because you're using a Mac.
As are many people who care about site design.
It's not mauve.
It's offensive.
Well then, redesign it. I'm not a designer.
Me neither, but it’s a good site. I bet I could find someone who would do it for free.
Maybe. It gets a lot of traffic.

This is not some rinkydink site. It gets about 35,000 hits a day and has been mentioned in CNN, Yahoo! Internet Life, HotWired, B!Zine, and regularly appears on Yahoo! Movies. Also, it is mauve. I know there are designers, art directors, and information architects in the Bay Area who are spending much of the day watching Dukes of Hazzard and updating their blogs. Anyone feel like doing a makeover? This would be a colossal before/after portfolio piece. I will bring you baked goods, and Chris will be generally kind to you. Email if you’re interested.

Addendum: We found someone. Quickly. I was shocked and heartened by how many generous offers flooded my inbox. You guys are the best. Thanks to everyone who responded. I wish I could bake for each and every one of you, but that would be more flour than I could safely cart home from the grocery store. The dirty work goes to Mike Monteiro of Mule Design (you may know him as Henry's dad). He's swell, and therefore, he deserves some biscuits. Thanks again to all of you who wrote.

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Think of the people you know who have ancestors of ethnicities that don’t generally make babies together. Why are these people often more attractive than the rest of us? My theory is this: If you're going to jump the race barriers and take on all the cultural crud that makes interracial dating so difficult, you're only going to do it for someone who's really, really hot.

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