Sunday, September 30, 2007

save the boobies TWO

One of my kayaking friends just sent out these awesome pictures of us from Row for the Cure.

This is my favorite. Its me, sitting in my boat after the race, watching the Portland Fireboat display. Looks like I'm sitting right in the middle of the spray, but I'm actually quite far away from it. So cool.

This is us rafted up before the race for a photo-op. Check out my number, baby. Oh yeah...

pictures of places...

This is where I'm going next week, the southern Appalachian Mountains. This is where I'm from, where I was born, where my dad's family has always lived, where I went to college. I love these mountains. I mean, after living out here I have a harder time thinking of those big hills as mountains, but the maps call them mountains, so they must be. Even though there aren't any snowy peaks among them. And there's no such thing as "above the treeline" -- the treeline ends at the top of the so-called mountain.

Anyway, so the mountains are smaller there, who cares, they're still mountains. They're MY mountains. And if they were the point of my trip I'd actually be excited to go. Unfortunately, the point of my trip is to hang out with my family and so... I am less than excited. I'm more or less just resigned to it. At least the mountains (in the colors of early fall) will be a really lovely backdrop for what will otherwise be poignantly miserable.

But that's just the first week. After that I'll be spending a week in Palm Bay, Florida with my mom, in a house that looks almost exactly like this. I found this picture with a Google Image search, but it could very well be a picture of my mom's actual house. Which is weird. Palm Bay itself is boring, ugly and full of old people and republicans, but at least my mom is there and my brother might come down too. And of course there's the ocean. Hopefully it will still be hot enough for swimming.

Finally, this is where I was yesterday. Sitting in my boat in the Columbia River by Brown's Landing just south of Scappoose. I didn't take this picture myself (I'm still without a USB cable for my camera) but this is pretty much what it looked like. Paddling a kayak is the best way to immerse yourself in nature, as far as I'm concerned. And that's all I'm gonna say about it. I'd rather be going on a two week kayaking tour of the San Juan Islands, but oh well.

So the point of this non-linear, unimportant, photo-heavy blogpost is to let you all know that I'm leaving town this Thursday and I won't be back until October the 18th. However, once I get to mom's I'll have ample internet access, so I'll probably be blogging from the trenches that whole last week. That'll be something to look forward to...

Friday, September 28, 2007

just your basic unrequieted love quadrangle

I hung out with Adventure Girl today. We met downtown for ice-cream and spent two hours planning the Halloween party we're going to host (at someone else's house...) next month. That in and of itself is a story for another post. Near the end of our festival of planning, I asked how "things" were. "Things" is my code for her secret relationship with one of our mutual kayaking buddies we'll call Sunny.

Adventure Girl and Sunny have had major chemistry from the word "go." On all our paddles, they can always be found with their heads together, giggling and looking suspicious. Often they'll raft up (where you put your boats side by side and drift) and lag behind the rest of us -- and we'll all raise our eyebrows and smirk whenever someone finally says "hey, where's Adventure Girl and Sunny?" We know where they are...

So, it came as no surprise to me when Adventure Girl finally confessed a few weeks ago that she and Sunny were involved. Although, she didn't call it "involved" -- she told me the long, convoluted story of how they made out a few times, backed off, then started up again. And she told me that Sunny thought they were "dating" and Adventure Girl thought they were "getting to know each other." Hmmm...

Anyway, why am I telling you this? Because it's interesting. After nearly two months of this secret non-relationship, things are getting rocky. Apparently, they both went to the Hot Flash dance last weekend and Adventure Girl happily accepted the "singles beads" they were handing out at the door. In case you have no imagination, I will explain that the singles beads are meant to signify to everyone in the room that you are single and looking. When Sunny saw those beads on Adventure Girl's wrist, she went mildly ballistic, which prompted Adventure Girl to go mildly ballistic back and the mild sparks flew!

Adventure Girl told me this whole story today while we sat in the last of the early fall sun in Pioneer Square and as I listened, I couldn't help but marvel at the weird coincidences of life. Adventure Girl's basic problem is that she just isn't that INTO Sunny. She likes her pretty well, enjoys the occasional make-out with her, etc... but when it comes right down to it, the big, juicy romance isn't happening. And just three months ago, I was in exactly the same place with Adventure Girl -- she wanted more and I was backing up. In fact, I had to have the exact same talk with Adventure Girl that I encouraged her today to have with Sunny. The boundaries talk.

Now, what's even more ironic is that, during the same time I was having to give the boundaries talk to Adventure Girl, I was having to GET THAT TALK from Dree! Remember Dree? I had a brief but stunning little fling with her earlier this summer and I was definitely interested in seeing more of her. Lots more. But she wasn't feeling it. The more I lingered in her periphery, making myself available, the more she backed off. The more she backed off, the more I crept forward, until she finally had to tell me explicitly to drop it.

And so there we all are, practically interchangeable. Imagine us all standing in a little line: there's Sunny looking longingly at Adventure Girl who is looking longingly at me and I'm looking longingly at Dree and Dree is looking longingly towards the exit. We make a perfect vector of disappointment.

Monday, September 24, 2007

are you sick of kayaking yet?

I got my pictures back from the Waldo Lake trip. And I had them put on a disk so I could share them with you. I won't go overboard (no pun intended, heh heh), but isn't this a cool shot of all the boats lined up? So lovely.

And here I am in the middle of the lake, all by myself, trying to capture myself in it all. So dorky. Oh well.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

save the boobies!

Today my kayaking group did Row for the Cure. It's the water-version of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. It was originally started for "rowers" -- you know, crew team rowers. In skull boats, or whatever they're called. Now they let kayaks do it too, but those elitist rowers are sure to keep us in our place as the bottom-feeders of the boater community. Whatever. We PREFER it that way. Snobs.

Anyway, I wanted to post some of my own pictures that I took with my new digital camera (thanks mom!) but I couldn't load them on my computer because mom neglected to send me the USB cable (thanks mom!). So I found this pic from last year. I don't know who these chicks are, except the second from the right. That's our Chief of Police, Rosie Sizer. Does YOUR town have a chick chief of police? I didn't think so.

If I seem punchy it's because I'm exhausted. We had to be at this Row thing at 6:30 in the effing morning. WHY SO EARLY?? All we did was sign in (which took all of five minutes) then we stood around and waited until all the skull-boats were in the water, which took till nearly nine. We didn't actually start racing until well after ten and the whole race was over in fifteen minutes.

Did we actually race? We said we weren't going to race, we all said we were just going to paddle like usual. BUT... once we realized we were actually, individually, being timed, we ALL tried to haul ass. And most of us sucked. Except Kara (third place in the kayak women's 1x) and Adventure Girl (fourth place). Me? I finished ten out of fifteen. That's right baby, top of the bottom third! (Kinda like law school...) Woo-hoo! But really, you know, it's 90% the boat. Kara's got a sleek, 18 foot fiberglass boat that slices through the water like a knife through warm butter. Me? I've got the butter. I mean, I love my boat, but it's heavy and plastic and it's definitely no racer.

But NEXT year... I'm gonna get all pumped up before the race, maybe rent a racing kayak, we'll see. Next year I wanna place. Tenth just isn't good enough. Although, at least I had the best racing number. Sixty-nine baby. Ohhhhhh yeaaaaaahhh...

Thursday, September 20, 2007

mystery solved!

Thanks SK. Now I know.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

gift horse, say "ahh"

Today I recieved a suspicious package from my mother. A very heavy suspicious package. The tag doesn't say how much it weighs, but it cost mom $25.75 to mail it from Florida and it took a week to get here. The post-man held it out at an angle so I could see the smashed-in bottom side and said "it was like this when I got it."

It was probably like that when mom mailed it.

Anyway, I knew she was planning to send me a digital camera. Mom is nice enough to send me the cast-off electronics that she buys for herself and ends up hating. That's how I ended up with an electronic organizer in 1997. And that's how I ended up with this camera, which is nice and I'll happily use it (once I figure out how...) It's the other stuff I'm concerned about.

First and foremost, the box was full of broken glass. Thanks mom. When I first graduated in December, mom made this huge production about buying me a class ring to celebrate my completion of law school. I thought that was dumb and that's what I told her in the nicest possible way. She sent me a link to the Josten's website and told me to design myself a ring. No thanks.

The Josten's site also offers fancy frames for your diploma. I suggested she buy me a frame instead. She said ok and here we are, 10 months later, and she has found the shittiest possible frame at Wal-Mart and tossed it into a cardboard box with NO CUSHIONING MATERIAL AROUND IT and mailed it across the country. And guess what. It broke.

I carefully removed all the broken glass and then crammed my stupid diploma into the crappy frame anyway. Who cares. I don't want to practice law, it won't be hanging in any fancy office anytime soon, who cares that it came from Wal-Mart, was assembled by toddlers in Indonesia and doesn't even have glass in it?

After throwing away all the broken glass, I moved on to the rest of the box. I found the camera, which is the size of a deck of cards, buried inside a camera case big enough to hold a bowling ball. I don't even want to guess where this came from or why mom bought it, all I can say is thanks. I guess.

After the camera, I found the clothes. I don't know why mom buys me clothes, she just does. They come from outlet malls, they're cheap and they're usually pretty tacky. Mom, I love you. Stop buying me clothes. I don't need a scoop neck sweater with a hood, but thanks. Or sweatpants. Or any of the other stuff I can't even describe. I will only take it to the homeless shelter and see it walking around on clients for the next few weeks.

Mom does get bonus points for sending me one very practical item, a fluffy throw blanket that I am using right this minute because it's damn cold in my house. She also gets points for the utterly random: a Charlie Brown sheet. Just the one sheet. Flat. With Charlie Brown. So... you know... that's cool.

Anyway, I saved the weirdest for last. I am now the owner of a red box that says Black and Decker. It weighs about ten pounds (literally, that is not an exaggeration) and I have no idea what it is or what it is supposed to do. I *think* it is something that will recharge my car battery if said car battery dies. I think. But I can't figure out *how* it might do this. It has a cord that plugs into a cigarette lighter... does it recharge my car battery via the cigarette lighter? That seems weird. Needless to say, it didn't come with any instructions or anything. Not even a note from mom. I guess I'll put it in my car anyway... just in case.

Uh, thanks mom. What would I do without you?

Monday, September 17, 2007


My kayaking friend Maia just sent me this picture she took during our Waldo Lake trip. The fact that I'm hatless means this was our first evening on the lake, we'd probably only been in camp an hour by the time this was taken. See that peak in the distance? We watched the full moon emerge from the top of that peak every night like some giant, luminescent ghost rising out of the mountain. It was awesome.

personally, i think i deserve an A plus...

You Scored an A

You got 10/10 questions correct.

It's pretty obvious that you don't make basic grammatical errors.
If anything, you're annoyed when people make simple mistakes on their blogs.
As far as people with bad grammar go, you know they're only human.
And it's humanity and its current condition that truly disturb you sometimes.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

parade of random

Thank god for YouTube. I like to watch videos on the internet while I'm eating (when I'm eating at home alone) -- usually I watch cartoons on or sometimes I watch episodes of TV shows (hello South Park, hello The Office) on dvd from the library. Today, however, I decided to check out YouTube and now I'll have you know I just spent the past half hour watching clips of Tina Fey on Saturday Night Live. I love Tina Fey. Thank you, YouTube, for giving me some Tina Fey.

In other video news, last night SK and I watched a sweet, heartbreaking documentary about transexuals in Georgia called Southern Comfort. The film is named after a trans-convention that's held annually in Atlanta, and it focuses on a particular transman named Richard who is, ironically, dying of cervical cancer. Even stranger, on a personal note, is that Richard lives in Toccoa, GA, THE PODUNK TOWN WHERE I WAS BORN. I'm sorry, but that's about as shocking as possible because NOBODY lives in Toccoa, GA. Nobody's ever even heard of it. And yet, I was born there and that's where this transman decided to buy land. Crazy.

If you get a chance you should watch this film. It will make you cry. That's all I'm saying.

Moving right along, speaking of weird references to my homeland, did I mention I bought a kayak? And did I mention that the kayak is a Perception Carolina? And, by any chance, do you all remember that I grew up in North Carolina? And can you believe that I have this weird surge of pride that my boat is named after my state? Because I actaully love North Carolina, even though I don't want to live there anymore. It's a great state. Adventure Girl, who helped me bring my boat home, has suggested that we call the boat "Sweet Caroline" -- because it's nice when our boats have names and the little green boat I was using was known to all as Sweetpea. But Sweet Caroline just doesn't work for me, besides which it gets that goddamn Neil Diamond song stuck in my head.

Speaking of Neil, I had a boyfriend named Neil once. Although I think he spelled it Neal. I can't really remember. I just remember that, at 17, he was making a smooth transition from metal-head redneck to grateful dead hippie, and he actually had a goatee, which I thought was hot. And he wore tie-dye. And long after we broke up I found out that he and our friend Bart smoked weed the whole time we were dating, only they never told me and never offered me any. Assholes. But I wouldn't have known what to do with it anyway. I think I thought I was straight-edge.

And speaking of weed! Did I tell you guys that I ate pot brownies for the first time in my entire life on that Waldo Lake camping trip??? And did I mention that those brownies KNOCKED ME ON MY ASS??? Oh my god, I had no idea weed of any kind could be so potent! I ate my first one just about an hour before bed the first night (what a waste) and when it hadn't kicked in by bedtime I just assumed I wasn't ever going to feel anything. Boy was *I* wrong! I woke up in the night to pee and HOLY SHIT I was so high. At first I couldn't figure out what was wrong with me, I just knew my brain was probably bleeding or something. Then I remembered the brownie. Doh! I stumbled out into the woods to the "bathroom" and then I wondered how I was ever going to find my way back to the tent. Yikes. All my journal entries from that trip start out "Oh my god, I am so high right now. Stop eating those fucking brownies!"

And speaking of brownies... nah, that's it for now. I had all these other things I wanted to write about, but I can't seem to remember them. So there's your parade of random. Now I'm gonna go finish reading the Ethical Slut and enjoying my nice, solitary afternoon. Ciao.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

glimpses of absurdity

Just a few little peeks into the weirdness of my day:

1.) My mom called. That, in and of itself, is pretty absurd. My mom's a lunatic. I told her I started kayaking and she said "That's dangerous! You gotta watch out for bears!!"

Bears? Kayking?

What the fuck is wrong with my mother?

2.) I sat in on a couple of job interviews for open positions at my place of employment today. Job interviews, in and of themselves, (like my mother) are pretty absurd. People have to come in and look awesome and convince you to hire them. The first guy we interviewed was pretty cool. The chick, however...

We told her that we work primarily with the homeless, mentally ill population, a population she admittedly had not worked with in the past. So we asked her how she felt about this population, specifically, we asked how she felt waiting downstairs in the milieu before her interview. She grinned this ridiculous grin and said, "I felt uncomfortable. I admit it, I didn't know what to expect. But you know, I'm a very strong Christian believer, and I just thought how Jesus came to help the sinners and the people who needed help, not the people who didn't need help, and that really helped me through it."


Everything about that sentence is fucked up. That's all I'm saying.

3.) Later in that same interview, we asked the chick to give us an example from her current job (teaching kids with autism) of a crisis situation in which she intervened. "Oh!" she said, "Just today I was working with Billy in the classroom and he had a meltdown because there was a loud noise. He threw himself into the floor and was crying. Then he started stabbing the teacher in the leg with a vibrator."

It took my mind about three seconds to catch up and think "did she just say 'vibrator'?"

Yes. She did. And she said it a few more times without the slightest acknowledgment that a vibrator isn't something you usually talk about in a job interview, regardless of the fact that it is apparently a useful tool to help kids with autism... which still doesn't make it sound any better...

...and stabbing the teacher with it? Did she really have to say that? I don't know how I kept myself from cracking up.

I wonder how Jesus feels about giving autistic kids vibrators to play with...?

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

it's about time...

Guess what!!! I finally bought a kayak! I have been trolling craigslist every single day for the past two months looking for good, cheap boats -- I even went to see a couple boats that ended up sucking *and* being overpriced. But patience and perseverance paid off. I just found the most awesome boat on sale, 30% off, at a sporting goods store in town called Next Adventure. A Perception Carolina, 14.5 foot boat, yellow, with two storage hatches, deck bungees and rigging, and total and utter awesomeness. Here's a small pic. I couldn't find a bigger pic of the right color... and the color is important. Ok. Here it is:

If I could drag this boat into my house and put it in the bed with me, I would probably sleep curled up with it tonight. But I think SK might be kinda... well... put out.

Monday, September 10, 2007

ummm... bullshit.

You Are a Pegasus

You are a perfectionist, with an eye for beauty.
You know how to live a good life - and you rarely deviate from your good taste.
While you aren't outgoing, you have excellent social skills.
People both admire you - and feel very comfortable around you.

I would have preferred unicorn, but whatever. This doesn't seem to apply to me at all, but whatever. I'm a sucker for these quizzes...

let's talk about...

As you know, I'm reading The Ethical Slut, and I'm finding it to be a very good book. One of the things I'm enjoying is the way they've put words to things I have been thinking and feeling for a long time. It's not so much that they found a language for it all, because I've managed in my own way to find a language for it too. It's the way it suddenly starts seeming normal when I read it in a book.

This is noticeable because it feels decidedly not normal when I talk about it to other people. For example, I spend a lot of time with my kayak friends, who are all older, slightly more conventional lesbians with good jobs and settled lives. Occasionally they ask me questions about my personal life and I try to answer. I try to explain that I want to relate to people on the essence level, that I want to follow the pulls of interest and attraction whenever I can, that I want to let each relationship with each person find its level, that I feel claustrophobic and stagnant when I try to be in a real relationship with one person for a long time.

I try to explain it, and they try to listen, but I think they think I'm crazy. They usually stay with me for awhile, then their eyes glaze over and I can tell that what I'm saying is either so uninteresting or so impractical to them that they can't even be bothered to follow along. So I give up.

It just seems so natural and obvious to me and I think if people would just listen they would get it. But that's foolish and I realize I'm behaving like some kind of christian missionary out preaching the gospel. I shouldn't be proselytizing for polyamory, or whatever it is I think I'm doing. I guess the bottom-line is that I should just shut up about it for awhile until it isn't so new. And I should also reevaluate why I might talk about it and who I might talk about it with. It's just like my spirituality. I don't talk about that with almost anybody, it's the most personal thing to me. I guess that's how I'm starting to feel about this.

Saturday, September 08, 2007


Apparently, while I've been off in my summer haze, far away from blog-land, I got tagged for a couple of related memes. Hmm. Thanks Melinda...

I'm not one to shirk my meme duty, but I have to admit that I don't think I'm going to be very good at this. I don't think I'm creative enough. Or maybe I'm just not enough of a nerd. Anyway, they're two memes that I'm going to combine into one: what are the most awesome television and/or movie props that you wish you could have.


1.) The A-Team van.

2.) An ewok.

3.) Pee Wee Herman's bicycle.

4.) The Kit car from Night Rider.

5.) E.T.

6.) Ooh! The Delorean from Back to the Future! (It has my initials on the grill, which I always thought was pretty cool.)

7.) Peter Fonda's motorcycle from Easy Rider.

8.) That little knit hat that Bill Murray wears in The Life Aquatic. And the submarine, while we're at it. And Seu Jorge. Or at least his guitar.

9.) Those thigh high black boots that Julia Roberts wore in Pretty Woman because... well... that's between me and Julia.

Ok, I can't think of anything else. I don't think I hold that kind of information in my head very long... props. I guess I'll be evaluating the props in every movie from now on. Oh well. I only tag Pachamama Dreamer because she asked for it. Otherwise, it's just too hard.

Friday, September 07, 2007

so many things

I am sitting here in my little hovel with the door thrown open, having just roasted coffee, the bowls full of beans still sitting out on my steps cooling, releasing their mildly toxic gases, SK sitting in my floor with her computer open before her, transcribing tapes from the seminar she just attended... and it's a beautiful thing. The air is perfect, still warm but not hot, the light is slanting earlier and earlier because fall is coming, everything smells like coffee, and I love SK and we've just had a really lovely day together. And it's not even over! We're going in an hour to a cookout at Kiwi and Malibu's house! And we bought two bottles of champagne!! I'm so happy. Nearly blissful.

Today we took a long walk in Forest Park and talked about my new commitment to nontraditional relationships. SK asked me a few interesting questions and it gave me a chance to think through and speak out loud my evolving philosophy of relationship, and it was really good. It would take too long to explain fully, and I'm sure I'll write more about it over time, but the basic gyst, the bottom line, is that I'm interested in getting to know people on an essence level, finding that spark of something behind the identity (like a soul? I don't know), in me and in others, and exploring that spark, that energy, that level of things. It's very exciting and it was exciting to talk about.

Then we saw a coyote on the path. In broad daylight, in Forest Park, just 100 yards from houses, right on the edge of the forest, in the meadow. A coyote just standing there on the path, looking at us and then looking into the bushes to his right, then looking at us again, and then looking down into the grass on his left, like maybe there were birds or chipmonks or something nearby. Why was he out during the day, I thought they were nocturnal? Was he old? Demented? Or just thrown off schedule by his proximity to people? Or just an oddball coyote, doing his own thing? We watched a long time, very quietly, then we left the meadow trail to give him his space and left by the forest trail, continuing to watch him until we were out of sight. So cool to see wild creatures. I feel very fortunate.

I bought a book called "The Ethical Slut" the other day. I saw it in the porno section of the magazine shop where I took my brother and then, after he was gone and I was back from my camping trip, I went back down there and bought it. It is the classic primer on nontraditional relationships. I don't know why I never read it before. I got my education in nontraditional relationships (or at least had my interest sparked) by reading about Georgia O'Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz, and by reading "Henry and June" by Anais Nin. I somehow never bothered to look for other sources of information, which is unlike me because I usually look for books to teach me everything I want to know and I have shelves full of books about sex and sexuality. But no books about relationships.

So I've been reading this book and basically just nodding my head a lot and wishing I could give copies of it to everybody I know. So far I haven't hit anything ground breaking or enlightening, I'm just getting a lot of affirmation. Yes, other people have thought the same thoughts I think, have felt the same feelings. I'm not crazy. It helps, sometimes, to realize you're not alone, even if the people around you seem to think you're off your rocker. I may be off my rocker as far as you're concerned, but there are others who beg to differ. At least a few...

Anyway, so it's an exciting time. Things with SK are lovely, she is right now my dearest friend and I'm so thankful she's in my life. But she returns to England in October, and I head off for two weeks to visit my family then as well. Our time here together is drawing to a close and I guess we'll spend a lot of time together trying to get the most out of it. Then we'll both move into our next things. Maybe I'll get a better job once the summer is over? Who knows. Maybe I'll finally start writing again, seriously. Maybe I'll buy a kayak and keep going year round. :-) Maybe I'll have a hundred girlfriends and die from too much happiness. Or maybe I'll find I have to balance it all out with a year of solitude. Maybe I'll decide to be a monk like the monk I met on my camping trip last weekend. Gay, HIV+, celibate, American, ordained monk in the Tibetan tradition. Well, I obviously won't be *just* like him... but you know what I mean. It's all kind of inspiring really. I'm excited to see what's coming.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

yay for tuesday fantasy girlfriend!

I'm a latecomer to the American version of The Office. Back in the spring I watched every single episode of all three seasons of the British version and thought it was hilarious. Then I put the American version on hold at the library and waited, and waited, and waited... and lo these many months later it finally came! And now I know that Pam (America's version of the British Dawn) is SO GODDAMN CUTE!! And that's why Jenna Fischer is this week's fantasy girlfriend!

So, so cute.

Monday, September 03, 2007

i can't believe it's over...

Doesn't that look awesome? That's where I just was! Waldo Lake. The fifth cleanest lake in the world, the second largest lake in Oregon, fed from beneath and containing almost no living material at all. The water was clear blue and you could see all the way to the bottom in most places. In other places, when the water was up to 400 feet deep, it was just blue, the most gorgeous, clear blue, all the way down. It rocked.

So, the brother adventure is over. I can't remember where I left off, but suffice it to say, he came, he had an adventure and he left. My friend Kara from the kayaking group picked us both up Friday morning, we dumped him at the airport (sorry bro, good luck) and we headed out of town for our kayaking weekend extravaganza.

The weekend passed so fast I can't believe it's actually over. Feels like just a minute ago we were loading up the boats and heading out into that choppy, windy mess. The paddle over from one shore to the other was intense -- high winds, three foot swells, the sun was shining right in our eyes. But we made it, unlike one tandem boat that capsized and it's paddlers had to be rescued by a motorboat. See, kayaking can be dangerous!

Anyway, I'm too tired to give you any kind of good description of the trip. Just know it was really fun and now I'm really tired. And a little bit sunburnt. And very happy about my life.