Finally!

Okay I suck at updating my blog. Sorry. I spent a week at Sea Ranch which is on the coast and there is really not much to do there apart from coastal walks and reading. I found this great tree overlooking the beach to read in (and everyone who walked by would be all “nice spot you’ve got there”). The beaches themselves are kinda creepy because there is lots of monstrous seaweed surrounded by flies and we even saw a dead seal being eaten by buzzards and the water is shark infested and the starfish look like evil, plotting starfish…basically just man-eating beaches.So instead you might go to the swimming pool where everything is safe and sound and old people feel safe to do water aerobics. This was like the on year where I was not forced to go to “Art in the Redwoods” which is the butt of many family jokes, instead I hung out with my Uncle (so for one day I knew everything happening in the PGA Golf Tournament). It was really nice to see my Uncle, Aunt and Cousin Zoe (who is off to Burning Man, as she said, “to do acid in the desert for a week”. On our quest for cream cheese she told me to I had to try shrooms (that…sounds like a line from some weird indie song). She also went to Amesterdam recently and so my grandmother asked her “is marijuana nice?”. Can you spot a theme here?).

Me and Zoe also went with a group to go horseriding on the beach. Okay anyone who knows me will now be laughing at loud at the idea of me on a horse. Especially my horse, Cherokee, who had beef with all the other horses. I was constantly whispering to her being all “noooo don’t bite that horse you are such a pretty horse, such a good horse!” and eventually losing my patience and whispering threats at her. Eventually I just stopped whispering (because I sounded a bit razed) and just started thinking about Far from the Madding Crowd because I was thinking about Bathsheba like when Gabriel first sees her leaning back on her horse…and Troy re-enacting Dick Turpin’s famous ride on his horse Black Bess…then i started thinking about Teddy Roosevelt for like…no reason at all. I think about presidents just like way way too often (like Presidents and Star Trek. I’m pretty sure there is an episode where the Enterprise run into Lincoln, which is clearly just the best merging ever. I was talking to the son of one of my friends year old about the Star Trek movie tonight. He is a 9 year old boy. I was more excited about it than he was. And he was pretty excited though he thinks that the scene with Kirk and Gaila is inappropriate which I think is hilarious) (it’s weird how those like minor minor characters like Gaila and Cupcake are huge on the internet, but that’s totally understandable. One is Green. One is fat. They should totally host an intergalatic chat show).

Anyway. The day after we got back me and my brothers went to Raging Waters, which is this waterpark like next to where California State Fair is being held. So that’s always fun and kinda tiring. But what was really awesome was that yesterday we went white water rafting on the South Fork of the the American River. Oh my god so fun! Plus our raft guide Will was always willing to do the more dangerous things and letting us swim in rapids (which is, dare i say it, totally awesome). He was very happy that he didn’t have to be the guide for the group of Boy Scouts. It is such a beautiful place, plus you can go past the site where gold was first found in California and you can see some of the path the Pony Express used to take. The rapids are mainly class 3 and there are lots of them at this time of year so yeah, today I was kind of tired (actually i woke up at around lunch time and had a hot dog wrapped in bacon for breakfast. America is crazy).

Today was more relaxed, we had some friends and family over and that was really nice. It was really good to see my great Aunt Silviya because she has been in hospital for ages recovering from chemotherapy and so today was the first time she has actually been up and about (yeah and she still made us cookies. Because she is awesome like that). She is the only 76 year old I know who can pull off a funky pink bandana.

So yeah, then we ate dinner at some really good mexican place and now I am going to have to let my brother on the computer.

(okay this is just a bracket to say: Hello Suga! You mention me in your blog and it always makes me smile to be in your tags! I will go listen to “Sugar Sugar” in your honour)

Quick!

Okay…I’m pretty sure today is the 19th August (but because of time zones etc. everyone says it is the 20th) (…and by everyone i meant the internet *facepalm*)

Which is Bill Clinton’s birthday! Happy Birthday to you!

I have some stuff to update you on…most of which will just be copied from letters to friends only hopefully with no spelling mistakes. (that is like the main reason I haven’t written that many letters. I hate being friends with smart people)

Anyway, because we couldn’t be bothered to cook after a long drive we are having some more take-out from In and Out Burgers…which just seems like a really appropriate way to celebrate Bill’s birthday.

*this is a secret blog post*

Oh I cannot believe I forgot!

When coming back from Berkeley, we decided to go to In and Out Burger.

Which apparently has a secret menu. (Thank you Zoe!)

:O

Animal Style Fries are Awesome.

(plus, we felt very smug that we were more in the know than the americans)

So yeah: secret menus! That is very exciting. More things should things should have them!

“Naaarg” is the new “blerrrg”

Ahah! I do have stuff to report. We came back from Tahoe on tuesday pretty exhausted. While up in Tahoe I did two awesome things: Para-sailing and Ice Skating. Para-sailing in Lake Tahoe was great, just me and my brothers 1400 feet in the air chillin’ out max and relaxin’ all cool…though before we got hoisted back into the boat we did get dipped into the water (which is kinda scary because it was all “the water is getting closer! It is so close! ARH WE ARE GOING TO FALL INTO IT!”).

"Take a picture, trick, I'm on a boat, bitch"
“Take a picture, trick, I’m on a boat, bitch”

The lake itself was really warm, and nicer in some ways than being in the sea because it isn’t salty (though my mum is kinda scared by it because she has “read in some book” that there are parts of the lake where they have not found the bottom. Ooooh). But of course going swimming with my brother ben means basically an hour or so spent trying to drown each other which probably weirded out the ridiculously american and healthy looking people on the beach (seriously. there were these walking stereotypes playing volleyball and drinking Budweiser). Anyway, fortunately we didn’t swim in Lake Donner which actually has warning signs which was “Warning-Xtreme Cold” which my dad ignores.

I didn’t have a blog last time I was in America but I’m pretty sure I told everyone I know how I went Ice Skating at 8000 feet up at the Olympic Ice Rink at Squaw Valley. It is just really beautiful up there especially at sunset when you can see the Lake and the Mountains (and it is actually cheaper to go up there at that time so that’s a plus) and hardly anyone is there…oh wait NO because suddenly a large group of American chavs invaded the rink. Grrr. Ah well, it was fun while it lasted (ice skating is good. Ice skating with ‘Super Freak’ playing in the background is awesome).  You do have to table car up there and back which is pretty freaky.

I'm in a cable car motherfucker (...?)

I'm in a cable car motherfucker (...?)

(by the way i am apparently missing out on cheese and nibbles. oh well. I just learnt how to punch a shark. Thanks youtube!) (i really should watch Shark Week. it looks awesome).

Anyway, Tahoe is pretty and all but mostly we stayed inside reading. I finished Pompeii by Robert Harris because I have to read it for class civ. next year and oh my god I just hate everyone in that book. (funnily enough, this is the one book I have ever heard my chemistry teacher say he likes. This is just further evidence that my chemistry teacher should be under permanent house-arrest with no internet access so he cannot share his dangerous ideas to the world) (oh my, i just realised he isn’t my chemistry teacher anymore!).

To spice things up a little (there is a phrase I never thought i would write. I can just see myself in 30 years time writing that in a family christmas letter about a trip to a glue making factory or something) when we got back we went to Berkeley! Aarh I am half annoyed and half happy that I got their last signed copy of David Eggers latest book at Moe’s Bookstore. Happy because that is awesome, unhappy because the reason they had signed copies is that Eggers was doing a talk there last week (which I could have gone to) and he isn’t doing anymore at the moment. Gah. Anyway, I also bought an issue of McSweeney’s, an album by the Silver Jews (American Water, i think it is considered their best. Incidentally, McSweeney’s once featured some of David Berman’s poetry. Clearly Dave Eggers is actually to awesome to function) and a Rasputin Music t-shirt. Yes, you read that correctly. I have Gregory fucking Rasputin on a shirt (which claims that he is a “Profligate. Panderer. Prophet. The Protomartyr of Punk“). We also had some bitchin’ sandwiches for lunch. And by “bitchin'” i mean they were really huge and tasted amazing and were made with fresh and tasty produce.

Err since then…not much. My mum went to LA and has since returned (she saw Britney Spears. Apparently she looked like a tramp. How suprising). I have awakwardly watched some Jon Stewart with my grandma. Gah. Very awkward trying not to laugh at Judd Apatow and Jon Stewart’s funny banter about masturbation and penis jokes in front of your grandma. Oh my god there was the most ridiculous clip of some anti-health care nonsense by some republican dude (who is called Chuck. that is always a bad sign) which you can find here because wordpress is a bitch who let me insert the video here. I also went to the Betty Crocker art museum to view some ceramics by female Japanese artists, which was…just really really boring…so I imagined what it would be like to take over the house, destroy the new extension they are adding and live a fantasy 18th century lifestyle and host magnificent balls in their kick-ass ballroom (apparently all their Crocker family were pretty awesome back in the day). Secret evil desires brighten up anything (as I’m sure Fia knows). It was stupidly hot today so i spent most of it in the pool instead of the original plan which was to go see Buddhists perform a Michael Jackson tribute (if anyone is seriously interested, I’m pretty sure i can find some poor-quality videos of it). That is about it (oh, actually I did go to the mall. I went to Macy’s. *shudder*). I will be going into San Francisco tomorrow so hopefully I’ll have something interesting to say about it.

(but i probably will not have any news because it is so boring I even picked up the newspaper. I was rewarded with an article about how totally awesome Bill Clinton is for getting those two journalists back from North Korea. gah! love so much!) (also love this thing about whether Bill is more Bond or McClane) (McClane could so kick Bond’s ass any day)

Random Activities!

Have truly settled into American life. I even made cookies this afternoon. This morning, i went running by the American River wearing big sunglasses and greeting strangers and the like. I think this state of weird happiness is actually some sort of mania induced by spending at least an hour a day staring at the signed photo of Robert Kennedy in the guest room (Robert is adorable. And was shot on my birthday). Or possibly from taking too many beach balls to the head (because “playing in the pool” means “trying to kill your siblings with inflatable objects”). It could be time zones, which wouldn’t be a problem if it wasn’t for trying to organize when to facebook my friends (Fia is back from france! yays! but James, Zoe’s boyfriend, has swine flu. Give *Russel loves you James!*/*warm fuzzies* to James!, Tookey is leaving for Ghana soon! *hopes Tookey has a good time*).

You know I haven’t eaten any Lucky Charms yet, or even popcorn. (i did eat some Honey Snaps, but they had a thing about Star Trek on the back and it is weird to eat cereal with Spock staring at you because I could just hear him in my head saying “honey snaps are illogical” over and over…Lucky Charms are probably more illogical…). I went to the supermarket yesterday and wandered around staring at how everything looked stupidly large (me and my brother almost had a sword fight with these giant rolls of meat, but decided against it) and had fun trying to find the things mentioned in Jonathan Coulton’s “Code Monkey: Fritos (which we bought for today’s BBQ), Mountain Dew (looove. loooove) and Tab (which I have never tried) and…well the other thing mentioned is “You”…but people are not available to buy at supermarkets, unfortunately.

Also went to Borders! They had John Green books! All with different covers! I was thinking about buying Looking for Alaska with the cool smokey cover, but thought that might be a bit weird. They also had Maureen Johnson books, so i’m going to buy one of those sometime. I also checked out the magna section and ended up reading most of Volume 1 of Death Note, and now i really want to read more to find out what happens (I do not like you Light. No i do not. I do like Ryuk however 🙂 ). Also read some of a cartoon Pride and Prejudice (why? why did you put it in comic form?!) and laughed at the trashy romance section (there are romance novels about Nascar. Nascar).

Rawr that is about it actually, tomorrow we are going up (down? seriously I have no idea where anything is here. Plus, it feels like I am living in a giant model suburb. It is pretty unnerving) to Tahoe which i shall report on when we get back.