We live halfway up (down?) a very steep hill. This afternoon as I was opening the curtains I looked out the window to see a man roll by in an office chair. This struck me as sort of odd.

Here’s a recent phone conversation with my mom:

Mom: How are you?
Me: Fine. You?
Mom: Fine.
Me: What did you do today?
Mom: Not much. Beat a snake to death with a shovel.
Me: Where was it?
Mom: In the living room.

I’m a fuss-budget. I don’t like Open Diary. Pitas and diaryland are working okay, but I think I’m going to try signing up with blogger.

We’ll see how this goes, I’m not sure it will work with the server I’m currently being hosted on, but since I’m being given free hosting by a nice reader I don’t want to bite the hand that feeds me and complain. (This is me not complaining).

I’ll probably stick with diaryland. Mostly because I’m lazy.

My yard is the site of frequent orgies.

The participants used to be more discrete, confining their liaisons to the backyard, staying behind the bushes. Lately, I feel like it’s been getting a bit out of control.

Wild sex. All day, every day. Behind the bushes. In the bushes. In front of the bushes. In the front yard. Yesterday I opened the door to get the paper and they were doing it right on the front porch.

Have these squirrels no dignity?

I understand what it’s like when reason gives way to passion, but last week a pair of swinging squirrels fell out of a tree (the squirrel equivalent of the mile-high club? No, that’s my roof) and very nearly fell on my neighbor. He nearly jumped out of his skin. Nonplussed, the little beasts chased one another into the road and picked up right where they left off. I have the horniest squirrels in the world.

My yard is teeming with them, a squirrels swinger’s club with an open admissions policy. At any given time some object in the yard is shaking and emitting harsh shrieks and squeals.

It’s completely insane, and it’s also becoming a little embarrassing. There are a lot of small children in the neighborhood (wait, is it something in the water? I hadn’t made the connection before).

Children like to play in our yard since we have an actual yard. And trees. Lots of trees. Trees full of rutting rodents.

“What are they doing?”

How do you explain that to a 5 year old? Play dumb?

“What squirrels?”

No. That won’t work when there’s a wild threesome going on in the azaleas, the screeching and chittering is hard to ignore. Lie?

“They’re, um, playing.”

No. They aren’t buying that one. Tell the truth?

“Well kids. When a girl squirrel and a boy squirrel love each other very much…”

No. Definitely not.

“Go ask your parents.”

That always works.

It could be worse. We could have a lot of deer. Deranged, humping deer. Yes, I suppose that would be worse.

Eric and Rebecca are pleased to announce that they were married on Friday, August 6, 1999 in Orange County, North Carolina. After the ceremony, they celebrated with 150 of their closest friends who they only see once a year. This involved two days of loud music, rampant public drunkenness, a man sitting in a large vat of banana pudding, and a six foot tall female bass player who breaths fire while she plays. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves here…

We know this is the equivalent of a Christmas newsletter in August, but it seemed the best way to share some of the highlights of our wedding weekend with those of you who either weren’t able to attend or have no memory of attending.

Friday, August 6th we packed the car and headed for North Carolina. Debbie and Bryan, Eric’s sister and brother-in-law, met us at the Orange County Courthouse in Hillsborough, NC. After procuring our marriage license and a mysterious sealed bag labeled “Newlywed Sampler” from Joyce, the Registrar of Deeds, the wedding party changed clothes in the courthouse bathroom and headed for the Magistrate’s Office, conveniently located in the County Jail.

There were 3 groups present when we arrived: heavily armed law enforcement officers, men in leg-irons, and us. After the deputies paraded a dozen Guests of the County through from the jail to the courthouse, we were able to enter the building. Each Guest, as well as the deputies with the shotguns, wished us well. We thought that was real nice.

Then we met the magistrate, Amy. She was extremely cool. The ceremony was held beneath a tree in front of the Courthouse.

The wedding party then dined at the Hillsborough Waffle House. The Newlywed Sampler was opened. It contained: paper towels, dishwashing liquid, Nyquil, Bounce dryer sheets and coupons for pregnancy test kits and cleaning supplies. It was truly a thing of wonder.

Debbie and Bryan headed home and Eric and I located our hotel. In an interesting mix-up, we were assigned a Handicapped suite instead of the Honeymoon suite. We’re probably lucky we got a room at all after my call earlier in the week to inquire about whether the bed in the honeymoon suite could sleep 4 (in the event Debbie and Bryan decided to stay the night).

It was now time for: Sleazefest, day one. For those of you who don’t know, Sleazefest is 3 days of beer, bands, bbq, and sweat held at Local 506 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. The music starts each day at 4 p.m. and ends somewhere around sunrise. Happy Hour is at noon. (www.sleazfest.com) Local 506 owner Dave Robertson was thrilled that Sleazefest was our wedding reception. We’ll be having a party in DC for those of you who could not attend Sleazefest, but I’m sorry to report that Eric continues to veto my suggestion that we build a go-go cage in the basement.

Our fellow sleazefesters (old and new friends) were thrilled with our wedding plans. Several of them had also been married at the jail, while others of them had served time there.

As the sun rose on the end of the first day of Sleazefest, we realized something important: you are supposed to have strippers at the bachelor party, NOT the reception. Live and learn.

One of our friends, a sometimes-member of Southern Culture on the Skids whose name I have forgotten, pointed out that it’s stilly to have one mediocre wedding band when you can have 20 or 30 really good bands. We agreed, especially when two-thirds of Jack Black joined Billy Joe Wingehead for a showstopping rendition of “Freebird.” It was magical. Or we were drunk, because we both really hate that song.

One of our friends, Linda, is a librarian and drummer from Baltimore. Linda and Rebecca danced a few sets away in the go-go cage, joined by 506 Dave and an occasional Drive-By Trucker. Eric may or may not have joined them. He refuses to confirm or deny these rumors and in the interests of marital bliss Rebecca will do the same.

506 Dave then put Rebecca in charge of Cage Recruitment for the rest of the night. She did a poor job, because she and Linda had by then decided to keep the cage to themselves because they are such great dancers (or because it was under an actual A/C vent. Probably that second one).

Around midnight, Linda and Rebecca vowed to form a band.

I’m sure there were details about the second day, but you’ll have to use your imagination because things get a little hazy.

As the sun rose on the end of the 2nd day we knew that it was time for a little sleep and the long drive home.

We learned valuable life lessons this weekend. We were reminded of the importance of proper facial protection when slicing bologna with a chainsaw. We learned that throwing fried chicken during a Southern Culture on the Skids set is serious business. We learned that the men of Truckadelic should keep their clothes on. (No offense, guys). We learned that it can actually get hot and humid enough to rain indoors in a North Carolina nightclub in the summer time. Mostly, we learned that you should never let others foist their image of the ideal wedding on you, because we think ours was just fine.

(original post date verified when archives recovered from old hard-drive, 2010, but it was definitely edited after that time)

I have to use AOL to access Open Diary from home and my connection is very painfully slow and I can’t seem to stay logged in long enough to update anymore. I’m not about to return to handcoding so I’m going to have to try to remember to update between classes while I’m at school.

I’m sharing an office with a nuclear physics PhD candidate and she’s really nice but she comes in and while she’s thinking, she stares intensely in my direction when I’m writing and mumbles under her breath in Chinese, which I find slightly stifling, creatively speaking.

If things go dark here for a while, don’t write me off. I’ll be back.

I’m trying to coax my Chinese office-mates to go to the roof of one of the buildings on campus to watch the fireworks, but I’m afraid that the concept of the 4th of July is a little perplexing to them.

They’re also freaked out by the concept of hot-dogs because they don’t like not knowing what’s inside – this is fascinating to me since we recently had a fracas wherein one of my officemates tried to explain to an American colleague that her dog was a viable source of protein and her emotional attachment to the pooch was peculiar. My officemate was a vegetarian until she moved to the U.S., so there’s a whole lot more layers of cross-cultural wackiness to that conversation than I can ever hope to convey.

Since I usually end up playing referee, some days I find school more fun than others.