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11:24am 01/07/2008
  So I had my history final this morning. I won't know my final grade for a while, but upon adding up all my points, I discovered that I only need a 12% on the final to get a B in the class. Once I turned it in, I opened up my computer and dropped the two classes I was scheduled to take next month.

Now, this utterly blows to hell my original plan of coming back with extra units so that I wouldn't have to take as many classes senior year. But, though I've done well in this class, it's left me a nervous wreck. I've been barely keeping up with the reading and all the papers, and it's taken up pretty much all the time I have that isn't spent at work. When the book I needed to read for the paper that was due last Thursday disappeared out of the Maliboomer office, I had to get a different one, read it in one night, and write a paper to turn in the next day. I got about two hours of sleep. The original book reappeared last night at scheduling. Fuckers.

The stress of school, combined with working full-time, figuring out what the hell is going on with my internet, and trying to find time to see my fiance, is killing me. Something's got to give. I now have the minimum of credits that I need to return to Pomona, so I don't need to be in school anymore.

So, for the first time in three years, it's time for my goddamn summer vacation.
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10:23pm 24/06/2008
  "A major Hollywood studio invites you and a guest to be among the first to see a new action adventure movie, due to be released into theatres later this summer. The movie will likely be rated PG-13."

I was going to make a poll to see what people think it is, but I guess my paid account expired. Ah well.

The contenders:

The Dark Knight
Journey to the Center of the Earth
Hellboy II
The Mummy 3
Clone Wars
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

What do you think it is? I had to switch around my schedule and give up my Saturday off to see it, so it had better be freaking Batman.
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10:31pm 11/05/2008
mood: excited
I was looking forward to this trip for quite a little while. We'd been planning on going up to Yosemite sometime in May, when the waterfalls would be nice and full and everything would be green and blooming, but before the tourists would arrive in force. One day I looked at his training schedule when we were on the way to dinner, and we decided that this weekend would be a perfect time to go. (We'd forgotten that this was Mother's Day weekend, which screwed things up slightly, but meh.) So I asked for and miraculously received vacation for the weekend, and after class on Friday, I drove out to Harbor City to meet JR so we could set out.

We got to Oakhurst around 6:00ish, and headed to the Pizza Factory, which JR kept telling me was amazing. (It was, by the way.) As we sat on the patio waiting for his business partner Jason, we saw a few people that JR knew, who stopped to chat. Small towns are crazy. Jason showed up, and we talked shop for a while, discussing the various projects that we're all working on and just generally chatting. We stuck around for quite a while, then, as it was getting dark, headed off toward our home for the weekend.

We were met by Heather, JR's sister-in-law, and inside I met Jason (JR's brother, not the other one). As we were unloading our things, I noticed a wrapped package in the trunk, and remembered that JR had bought me a gift for our five-month anniversary. (Yes, I know anniversary's not the proper word, but the proper word doesn't really exist, so go with it.) Since that day was our actual anniversary, I asked if I could open it. "No, I want you to do it tomorrow in the park," he said. I pouted a bit, not seriously but just to mess with him, and we went inside. We chatted for a bit with Jason and Heather, watched an old episode of SNL, then we all headed toward bed.

The next morning, after we finally roused ourselves, we struck out. We went to the Vons where he used to work so he could say hello to some old friends, and we picked up a couple of disposable cameras, since my mom had insisted that we take pictures. We then headed back to Pizza Factory, so JR could pick up the video camera from Jason. "I just think we should record our first vacation together," he said when I asked if there was anything specific we were going to be filming. He had a bit of a cheeky grin that should have tipped me off, but I just chalked it up to him being sappy the way he can be. After a hearty breakfast (made much better thanks to a warning from Jason that the place which used to serve the best breakfast in town is now terrible), we made the long drive up to Yosemite. We stopped at the Tenaya Lodge so I could meet JR's other brother Steve. The intention had been that we'd stay at the Tenaya that night, but the aforementioned Mother's Day, combined with two weddings and a prom, filled the hotel to capacity, so we couldn't squeeze out a room.

The park is BEAUTIFUL. I've seen pictures and the like, but they really don't capture the feeling of actually being there. We were going to start at Mariposa Grove, which has all the giant sequoias, but it was closed for some reason. JR asked if I wanted to see the Valley or Glacier Point first, but as I'd been telling him throughout the weekend, he knew the place much better than I, so it was up to him. After a moment's internal debate, he said, "We'll save Glacier Point for later." With the same goofy grin on his face.

We made our way to Bridalveil Fall, which was really quite beautiful even if it did take us an eternity to find a parking spot. I did a bit of filming along the way, because I figured if we were going to be filming our vacation, we should do it properly. The waterfall was so full that we couldn't go all the way to the viewing area; the camera was getting soaked, so we had to turn back. We went deeper into the Valley and saw Yosemite Falls (though not very close up, the other road was closed) and the Ahwanee, a gorgeous historic hotel on the Valley floor. Then we fought traffic out of the Valley, and headed up toward Glacier Point.

It was a pretty long way, and there was a bunch of snow on the ground the higher up we went. In May! It was trippy. Finally, we got up to the top and parked. JR opened the trunk to get out his warmer clothes (it was pretty cold up there), and I noticed the gift again. I asked if I could open it now, and he said I could, and got the camera out to film me opening it.

It was a Build-a-Bear toffee brown bear, really soft and cuddly, and wearing a tuxedo. In his lap was a big box with a bow. I thought it was adorable, and figured that the box was just a prop, since it was being given as a gift. "Open the box," JR said. I pulled off the bow and looked at the box. It had a big fancy "RB" in the bottom corner. I recognized the initials. If my brain hadn't shut down completely when I saw that, it finished the job when I opened the box and saw the diamond ring.

JR knelt down (in the freshly melted snow near the car, no less) on one knee. I'll have to watch the video to catch exactly what he said, because my brain wasn't quite functioning yet. I'm reasonably certain it contained the phrase, "Will you marry me?", though. The first words out of my mouth were, "Julia's going to kill me." (My dear friend Julia had warned me that if I got engaged before she did, she'd kill me. Julia's a 5'5" blonde girly-girl who can be moderately terrifying.) Then I kissed him, and as I did so, it occurred to me that I still needed to actually say "yes".

So yeah. I'm engaged. We spend most of the trip home telling our friends and my family (his family already knew; it's a small town). We're not going to even start planning the wedding until after I graduate, but still.

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02:13pm 08/02/2008
  Anyway, continuing where I left off. So right now I'm just taking the Econ class, which is just Friday mornings and seems dead easy. I did reasonably well in Econ back in AcDec (wasn't my best event, but I could manage unembarrassing scores), and this is macro, which I found infinitely preferable to micro. The other classes I found are half-session classes, so they don't start until after spring break. (Intro Sociology and Intro Philosophy, in case you were wondering.) So I don't have to start hijacking my schedule just yet, which was a major concern for signing up to start classes right away. Even the big potential problem has been averted, as there is no class next Friday. As in, the day after Valentine's Day. I'm very, very happy about that one.

The best part is that, since Cypress is on a semester system, these classes each count as the listed three units, despite none of them being a full semester long. That gives me a total of nine units, and I need twelve to return to Pomona. I'm going to be taking at least three units over the summer, six if I can manage. So I'm going to be petitioning Academic Affairs to clear me to return to Pomona before I've completed the 12 units, contingent on me actually finishing the summer classes. I'm also going to be heading back up to campus to meet with the English department about writing my Wonderland thesis next year, because I'm actually really interested by the material, and I'd rather not take two seminars. They also futzed with the English major before I left, so I need to talk to someone about that and see whether it would be best to take the old set of requirements or the new.

Oh, and it looks like they added dates for more cruises, so it looks like we'll be taking a three day trip to Ensenada over fall break. The only potential problem is that it would be the week before Meghan's wedding, so it's a lot of money to be spending all at once. But most of that money would be spent in advance, and we probably won't be spending much money in Colorado anyway. It may come to me getting a second job to actually pay for all this shit, but we'll see.

I now have about half an hour to kill before I head to work, so I'm probably going to poke around looking for more ways to bring in some extra cash. Or I might check in on my WoW characters, we'll have to see.
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09:15am 08/02/2008
  Is there still anyone out there reading this thing? No? Okay then.

It's been a while, hasn't it. So, catching up. Classes last semester didn't go so well; a combination of severe depression, illness, and general apathy meant that I dropped them all because I simply stopped going. By the time I thought about registering for classes for this semester, it didn't seem to be an option at Fullerton because everything was closed. So I figured I'd take classes during the summer to be able to get back to Pomona. More on that in a second.

I have a boyfriend now! Gasp! Shock! His name's J.R., we've known each other for about a year (he works Jungle and Trains), but we started dating in December. It's going really well, and actually getting kind of serious. See, I got a little freaked out because he lives kind of far away from the park, and Pomona's kind of far away in the other direction. We spend as much time together as we can, but with our schedules, it gets really hard. I'm afraid that once I go back to school for reals, I won't ever see him at all. I brought this up (god knows why), and he suggested that maybe we take a cruise to Mexico together before I go back. Squee!

So we started looking into the cruise idea, and were trying to figure out dates for it, which meant looking at my schedule for the fall, as well as figuring out where I'm going in the summer. As I was poking around, I noticed that some schools still have spring classes available. So, now I'm sitting in the hallway at Cypress College waiting for my Econ class (which started last Friday, but it only meets once a week and I should still be able to get in). I've been sitting here for a while, because I thought it started at 9:00. It starts at 9:30. Ah well.

Oops, there's the professor. Gotta run.
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11:22pm 06/09/2007
  So the issue with registering earlier today was apparently on Blizzard's end. (I don't know what caused IE7 to break Caleb's video card, but whatever.) So now I have Kadyah, a level 7 troll hunter on Hellscream. I tend to get a little alt-happy, so I'll probably be making bunches of other characters on other servers, too, especially since that lets me play in guilds with several groups of my friends, so I don't have to exclude anyone.

I feel like this is a major nerd rite of passage, finally giving into the whole WoW thing. Or maybe it's just yet another way for me to procrastinate. I suppose time will tell.
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03:40pm 06/09/2007
  So Caleb talked me into joining World of Warcraft. Yes, I know. So I paid the 20 bucks to buy the regular one (I didn't want to shell out the money for Burning Crusade right away) and took it back to the apartment (there's no point in going home just to drive back down here for rehearsal tonight)... and I can't create my account. We can't figure out why, it just keeps throwing unspecific error messages at me.

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05:05pm 18/08/2007
  There are a few things that I really should be doing, but I have to stay inside until the sun goes down.

I haven't turned into a vampire. At least, I don't think I have. No, I'm nursing a pretty wicked sunburn. I went to Corona Del Mar on Thursday with an assortment of people including the old roommates, and I got roasted. I had to ER from Jungle yesterday because I was simply in too much pain; I got some nasty blisters on my shoulders from the costume. The current housemates went to Balboa Pier earlier, and are now at Michael's dad's house, but I opted out, because I can't really do much. Showering was pretty difficult. I normally can't stand cold showers, but obviously I couldn't have hot water. Since lifting my arms also hurts (another reason I couldn't stay at Jungle yesterday; limited shoulder movement meant I was like a T-Rex in the boat), reaching up to wash my hair was pretty damn uncomfortable to say the least. I'm now wearing the softest shirt I have, the shirt Mom brought back for me from her honeymoon in the Bahamas, which I dyed pink long ago in the requisite laundry accident everyone must have as part of living on their own. It looks a little silly; I usually use it as pajamas. I had a brief burst of energy and started the monumental task of cleaning the kitchen, but now I'm a little (if you will) burnt out. I'm debating going shopping, because more supplies are needed to get the kitchen clean and I'm a little low on groceries, but I don't really want to expose myself to any more sun. I also desperately need to clean out my car--same thing.

So yeah. I start classes on Monday, which is a little bizarre. I also have my first actual Trains shift tomorrow, I'm terribly excited. I've started in on the storyboards for American Gods with satisfactory results. All in all, things are sort of vaguely positive. I just need to, you know, heal.
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01:07pm 10/08/2007
  So, after much weighing of my options, I've come to a decision about this next semester. I've applied for and been accepted to Fullerton Junior College. Loads of Disney Cast Members go there, and I've heard pretty good things. If all goes well, I'll be taking Spanish III (the one gen ed I can get Pomona credit for, and the one I desperately need), a computer graphics class, and beginning painting, for a total of 2.5 Pomona credits. I can't return until I bring 3 credits with me, but I've decided that I'm going to be taking a year off rather than just a semester.

I've got plenty of reasons to do this. Firstly, I really don't want to be living in a closet with a bed in if I return in the spring, which is fairly likely to happen. I've found a place to live, a room in a nice little house that's within my price range with a bunch of cool people, including Josh the Pirate. I quite like it, especially once Mai moves out near the end of August and I get my own room, complete with a nice big closet and a queen-sized bed. (For now I'm sharing a smaller room with two other girls on a mat on the floor. Still beats sleeping in the living room.) I'd rather stay here until I can guarantee better housing. Taking the year off also gives me more time to become a trainer and to work on my own stuff, so I can get a decent jump on American Gods and Song of Avalon before my life starts getting too terribly hectic. It also makes it much more worth it to convert to full time statusm, since I won't have to convert right back.

But the big reason I'm taking a year away from Pomona is to spread my coursework a little thinner so I actually have a chance in hell of finishing it. See, I have to bring back three credits to Pomona at minimum. Right now, I'm 11 credits away from my degree. So my plan is to bring in five credits next fall, so that I only have to take three classes each semester instead of four. That way, it should be much easier to stay on top of my classes while continuing to work at Disney. (I may drop to Saturday/Sunday status once I go back to Pomona, but I'll figure that part out when I get there.)

So I'm going to put in my application for full time tomorrow, as well as new preferences that list my new availability and my new attraction preferences. I can register for classes on Tuesday, and classes begin next Monday. I'll have classes on Mondays and Wednesdays, two in the morning and one at night, leaving my afternoons pretty wide open. I still won't have proper days off, but I should have enough downtime that I don't go completely starkers. There's still going to be the money issue, but as long as I'm consistently getting 40 hours a week, I should be able to scrape by, and I'll keep looking into ways to make money on the side. (Any suggestions are welcome.) I presume my parents will continue paying for school, so that will help at least. Things will probably be pretty tight, but they usually are. It's not really that big a deal.

I've also made some progress on the writing front: After a long conversation with Josh, I have a scene list for Act I of American Gods. Of course, the first act is always the easiest, but this at least gives me a place to start, so I can get going on this thing again. I'd like to have the second draft done by spring break, but we'll see how things go.

Well, I've got a lot more to do on my day off, so I can't sit around my computer forever. I got Samwise unpacked and set up. Damn, I've missed my desktop. The to do list today includes a Target run, more unpacking, laundry, and a shower. I should also call my parents and let them know what's up with school and stuff. I feel so much better when I'm productive on my days off. I just feel like I'm wasting time if I sleep all day and then just do nothing.
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10:35pm 04/08/2007
  I'm reaching an impasse with work, school, and such, and I need to make a decision soon. Unfortunately, it's not an easy decision. See, I've come to the rather embarrassing realization that I don't make enough money to support myself not living on campus. Simply quitting Disney and getting a better paying job is NOT an possibility; I've worked my ass off with this company and sacrificed a great deal to get to where I am, and leaving now would make all that effort worthless. So, given that, I do have some options.

Option 1: Wait and see what my hours look like as summer winds down. Now that I've learned Steam Trains, I should hopefully be getting a decent number of hours.
Pros: Minimum of effort. Prevents me from committing to a course of action that might prove detrimental.
Cons: Not a decision so much as a delaying tactic. Since I don't really make enough to live on even at 40 hours a week, not particularly feasible.

Option 2: Once summer ends, I revert my availability back to Friday night, Saturday, and Sunday, the minimum for regular CRs. I then get a boring, well-paying 9-5 job like data entry or the like, standard office bitch stuff, to supplement my income. School happens on weeknights.
Pros: Dramatically increases my income, allowing me to pay off debts, start up savings, and generally live comfortably.
Cons: Never have free time ever. Potential scheduling issues once peak season hits and I have to be more available. Limits selection for classes.

Option 3: There is a separate status of CR that only works Saturdays and Sundays, even during peak seasons. I apply for that, then proceed with the rest of Option 2.
Pros: Frees up my Friday nights. Creates scheduling stability and allows me to visit family.
Cons: Conversion process is a pain in the butt, taking up to a month in both directions. Miss out on overtime and holiday pay during peak seasons. Will never have weekends ever again.

Option 4: Apply for full-time status.
Pros: Guarantees me 35 hours per week. Gives me a nice bump in seniority and benefits. Greater scheduling flexibility for school.
Cons: Conversion process is a pain in the butt, possibly taking a couple of months in both directions. Possible loss of previously accrued seniority upon conversion back to CR, which will be necessary when I return to Pomona. As previously noted, can't really get by on 35 hours a week.

Option 5: Request money from my parents. Not a lot, just enough to get me a little ahead on my bills instead of a little behind.
Pros: Minimum of effort. Immediate cash gain.
Cons: Hate asking for handouts. Parents don't have much money to begin with. Can do this on my own, dammit.

Option 6: Win the lottery.
Pros: Great deal of money, publicity.
Cons: Not particularly likely to happen.

I'm also investigating possible work from home options (again, data entry, though there are other things) that would supplement my income without requiring me to actually be in an office, but it's hard to separate legitimate prospects from scams. I really need to start looking at classes for fall, but again, money's a major issue. It would be really nice to sell some of my writing, but that takes a HUGE amount of time and effort, starting with the essential step of writing something marketable.

So in the end, I just don't know. I'll figure something out, because I always do, and it'll work out all right, because it always does. I just need to think, and to talk it out, and to scrape by as long as I can. But now, I'm going to bed, because I didn't get much sleep last night and had to get up really early this morning for my last day of training, and I have to move tomorrow. At least it's just the heavy lifting, no real packing or unpacking yet. I'll do some more thinking in the morning. For now I'm going to evict a kitten from my pillow and go to sleep.
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10:52am 30/07/2007
  I'm on vacation. I needed it badly, and it has worked wonders for me.

Sometime last month or so, Becca called me up to tell me that her parents wanted to take me to Comic-Con for my birthday. Cool! I'd always wanted to go to San Diego Comic-Con, so I was perfectly happy to sign on. I asked for the extra days off of work, and against all odds, actually got them. So on Wednesday afternoon, as soon as I clocked out after my Jungle Cruise shift, I got changed into regular clothes, hopped in my car, and headed down to San Marcos, to Becca's aunt's house. Her gorgeous, expensive house. Man, it's nice to be rich. We chatted for a while, watched something on her giant flat-screen TV, then headed down to San Diego. Unfortunately, we didn't get down in time to get our badges, but we did get to slip in to the last bit of Preview Night and grab a program, so we could plan our weekend.

Like I said, I'd never been to Comic-Con, so I didn't really know what to expect. I mean, I figured that it was going to be a fan convention, so people dress up and you buy a bunch of crap and get autographs and such. There's certainly that element, but I hadn't expected the professional aspect of it. The networking opportunities available there are really surprising. I mean, I went to a couple of panels with T Campbell. Not attending panels he was on, but sitting next to him and chatting, then going to the next one together. T freaking Campbell! (He's really big and important in webcomics, if that name doesn't mean anything to you.) I was really glad I hadn't worn a costume (I was considering it), because I didn't see a single person in costume at any of the panels I attended (aside from the massive studio presentations), and it would have been pretty hard to be taken seriously if I'd been dressed as a cartoon character. I think next year, I'm going to be much better prepared to market myself. I didn't even have business cards this time.

And I think that's the best thing I got out of this convention. Aside from getting away from work for a few days, it really got me going creatively. I've written a few pages, and even finally designed a logo for Song of Avalon that I think is pretty damn good. Plus, I came away with a few ideas for short films and other comics. Not to mention loads and loads of swag. Posters, books, T-shirts, and random free crap galore.

Plus, I'll have a place to put all that stuff, since I'm moving on Saturday into an actual, honest to God house. I'll be sharing a room with two other people for a couple of weeks, then I'll be getting a room of my own. With a queen-sized bed! It'll be magical. I'm terribly excited. I'm even more excited about it, because Saturday I should also be getting signed off on Steam Trains, which I've been trying to get since I hired in at Disneyland.

Yup, a new attraction, a new house, and a new creative drive. (Plus new gorgeous and cheap clothes from this amazing store in San Marcos.) Life's pretty damn good right now.
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09:18pm 13/07/2007
  This morning finds me in an extremely good mood. I initially woke up at around 7:00, and my brain prepared to do the normal calculations of what time I start and how much longer I can sleep before I have to leave for work. Then I remembered that, oh yes, I don't have to work today. I don't have to work tomorrow, either. That makes this my first actual weekend, the first time I've had nothing to do on a consecutive Saturday and Sunday, in over a year and a half. (I know I said that a couple of weeks ago; I ended up switching my day off from Sunday to Monday to help out a friend.) However, I did set my alarm for 9:00, because this weekend shall not be celebrated by something so mundane as sleeping until noon. No, this weekend is so very special that I am celebrating by having lunch at Club 33. Pat knows someone with a membership, and he made the reservation a few months ago. And I can now finally get excited about it, because my life is finally back in order.

I have a phone, for one thing. It's old and crappy, but it was given to me for free by another skipper, and it gets me back in contact with the world. My e-mail was apparently temporarily restored, but it has yet to be disabled again. And I finally got The Call, to tell me that I didn't get the job. Which I already knew, because the buzz was going around that Libby was leaving for WDI, and which I'm actually totally okay with.

I'd write more, but I called Jeff to see when they were leaving, and they're already at the park. Even though Paul said he'd call me when they were on their way. Bitches. So I'm off to eat expensive food, drink wine inside Disneyland, and generally feel all important. Ta!
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12:58am 04/07/2007
  Well, progress has been made on all fronts. Turns out my brakes were only squeaking because it's just a squeaky brand of brake pads, and it won't affect my car's performance at all. I also got temporary access to my e-mail account, so I was able to clean it out and answer a few important e-mails I hadn't gotten to read. It will be disabled again, but at least now I can be confident that messages aren't going to bounce because my inbox is full. I've been doing some more reading lately, first with Peter and the Starcatchers, the excellent prequel to Peter Pan (Disney sanctioned, not Barrie estate). Now I'm making my way through the Discworld novels, which has caused frequent trips to Borders as I finish them off. Still, reading makes me happy, and gives my brain something to do on breaks or while waiting for the bus. I ran into Libby today, the other candidate for my internship (who used to be a Jungle lead, before he went to Subs). He said he still hasn't heard back, but he should know by Friday. When he knows, I'll know, so I'm content to wait out the week. If I haven't gotten The Call by then, I'll scream. Still without a phone, but I'm getting used to it. Ever adaptable, that's me. I'm checking my voicemail at restrained daily intervals to make sure I don't miss The Call, and other than that I'm getting by. My family probably thinks I've dropped off the planet, but that's nothing new.

But my alarm is going off in six hours, after which I will work a twelve hour day when it is guaranteed to be hot and crowded. At least it's holiday pay. Combine that with a total of 62 hours for this week, and my next paycheck is going to be very happy indeed. Let's hope I survive to spend it.

Oh, and go see Ratatouille immediately. I command it. You won't be sorry.
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11:00pm 27/06/2007
  Twelve hour Jungle shift eat my brain. But back at the Enchanted Hospice tomorrow, yay! Then after that, I just have to trudge through another twelve hours at Jungle and then I'll have two whole days off! In a row! On the actual weekend! I don't remember the last time I had one of those.

Unfortunately, it's an opening shift with my birdies, so I need to sleep now to make sure I'm not late for this one like I was for the last time I was supposed to open Tiki. Sleeeeeeeeep...
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11:50am 26/06/2007
  "Hey Brittany, want to go out and get some lunch?"
"Not if you want rent."

I am sitting in the apartment, waiting for my TV dinner to cool, cut off from the outside world. I have no phone, no e-mail, no money, and thus effectively no car. Apparently I dropped my phone one too many times, and it started crashing on me last week. It would just simply reboot itself, or stop working and start flashing endlessly until I pulled out the battery to make it stop. With patience and coaxing, I could eventually get it to start up again, up until Friday, when it wiped its memory on reboot. I took the phone to the Verizon store to have it reprogrammed, but they say there's nothing they can do, I simply need a new phone. I'm not eligible for an upgrade until April, so I'd have to pay retail price, which is generally ridiculous. Obviously I can't be without my phone for nine months, so something shall have to be done. I just don't know what.

The e-mail thing is another fun thorny problem. It just stopped working a little while ago without warning. I asked Jeff to check if perhaps my password had expired without me being aware of it. Oh no, my password's just fine, but my account has been disabled. Yup, apparently because I'm on leave, I don't get to have a Pomona account anymore. I'm a frakking supervisor and I wasn't aware of this policy (which apparently isn't a Pomona policy but a 5-C one), and I wasn't made aware of this policy when I was suspended. Needless to say, I'm uber-pissed. Since I work for the department, I have a bit more recourse than a random student, but that doesn't appear to be doing much for me. I have a couple of other e-mail accounts, but I never use them, and no one really knows about them, since I didn't get a chance to warn people that they'd need to contact me at another account. Apparently my e-mail isn't bouncing, thankfully, but it will when my inbox fills up, which will probably be soon.

Then there's my car. It's a much more reliable car than my old Buick, it definitely gets points for that. But it's been doing this weird squeaky thing with the brakes since my dad brought it out here, which last night was promoted to a weird grindy thing that has made me resolve not to drive it any further until I get it checked out. Plus it badly needs an oil change, and it could really stand to be washed, while I'm at it. So, though I had intended to run a few errands today (including a trip north to potentially deal with both phone and e-mail) I also don't want to permanently damage my car or, you know, die, so I must keep my car parked until I can afford to pay to get it checked out. That won't happen until at least Thursday, and we'll see what sort of state my expenses are in at that point. I've started in on the whole 60-hour week thing, which should pad out my bank account nicely if it doesn't kill me first. (A 12-hour day at the Jungle Cruise during the summer is a whole different beast than a 12-hour day at the Opera House over the holidays.) So hopefully more money is in my future, I just don't know when.

So I'm stuck here until it's time to head to work (walking or taking the bus, thanks to my car), which at the moment isn't until 8:45 tonight. I'm hoping my efforts to start earlier will be successful, but even then, the earliest they'd probably start me is 4:15, giving me several hours to sit alone and rot.

At least not having access to my phone means I can't check it every thirty seconds to see if WDI has finally called me back because MY HEAD ASPLODE FROM WAITING OMFG. I'm not even going to go into all the work bullshit here, but I'm even more desperately hoping to get this job so I can get away from all the politics and insane guests for a while. We'll see. Think good thoughts. Pray for Bobo.
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05:02pm 07/06/2007
  This morning, I was on break when Erin arrived on shift. As we waited to go onstage, I remarked, "One of two things has to happen today: either I will get a call from WDI, or we will have a nice long downtime." So we had a good laugh, waxing rhapsodic about a double six-shot.

So my shift went decently well; I was in a three-man rotation and my boats were okay, and my lunch came perfectly on time. I returned from lunch and got back into rotation. On my second trip around, I noticed something odd about Little Squirt. I kept it in mind all the way around the jungle (I'll often notice a show concern and forget about it by the time I reach the dock), and reported it to the lead as soon as I'd finished the required bits of my unload spiel. We took a deadhead to check it out, and discovered that we had a pretty big problem on our hands, so we had to go down to fix it. We were down for nearly two hours, and by the time we finally came back up, I loaded one boat then was bumped to task, and my bump home arrived ten minutes later. I was satisfied and in a rather good mood, pretty amused that I'd managed to predict such a random event.

Only, it turned out that I was wrong. Remember, I had said that only one of those two things was going to happen. So when I saw that I had missed a call while on the shuttle and had voicemail, I was a little half-hearted in my usual scramble to check who had called, since hey, there was no way I was going to get THAT call today.

Naturally, I recognized the missed call as a WDI number. I actually screamed in my car.

When I called on Friday, I was told that I would be getting called with a final decision this week. Of course, they said I'd probably get called on Monday, so this wasn't the most accurate information. So, given the stress that all this waiting has caused, I was sort of hoping for that final decision, even if it were a no. Being told that I'm still a candidate but they're still deciding is good news, but it's frustrating.

It also means I need to go shopping again, since I don't want to wear the same outfit again and I don't have anything else that will do.

So I wait, and fret, and sort out my project proposals (when I first thought about going over to Imagineering, I didn't have anything in particular that I wanted to get done, but now I have a decent sized list of ideas, ranging from small plusses to full attractions) and go over potential interview questions in my head.

Well, but not tonight. Tonight I find food at ESPN Zone, then go watch The Goonies at Jessica's. Because I do have something of a life, sometimes.
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Holding Pattern   
03:29pm 05/06/2007
  For the first time in my life, I don't know what I'm doing, or what the next months will hold for me. Naturally, this pisses me off, especially because there's nothing I can do but wait.

I'm waiting, you see, for a phone call. About two months ago, I interviewed for a creative writing internship at Walt Disney Imagineering. Things seemed to go well, but unfortunately, I have learned that HR is apparently extremely slow, and I have been waiting ever since to learn my fate. I've been calling every couple of weeks like clockwork, only to be told that they were still interviewing, and that I was still in the running. Well, when I called on Friday, I was told by the girl in HR that the guy who was in charge of the final decision was out of town, and when he returned on Monday, we'd know for sure.

It's now Tuesday. Late in the day on Tuesday. Needless to say, they haven't called.

I'm really not sure what to think at this point. I desperately want this job; this is what I want to do with my entire life, after all. But even while trying to keep up my optimism, I'm starting to lose hope, especially since I found out that a former Jungle lead who is vastly more qualified than I is also going for the same position. So, while I'm still fervently wishing and hoping to get a call with good news, I'm starting to resign myself to the idea that I may get passed over, and starting to make contingency plans. I practically have a flow chart of what's going to happen in the next six months, depending on how certain decisions turn out.

Basically, here's my idea. If I get told no by WDI, then I'm going to get myself more firmly set up at the resort. That means seeing about converting to full time (I think I've already missed a deadline, but I might be able to beg my way in), as well as finding a more permanent living arrangement. As much as I appreciate Julia's generosity in giving me a place to stay, not having my own space and my own stuff is really starting to get to me. I'd say of all the things I want most in this world right now, an apartment of my own ranks right below a job at WDI and right above a Nintendo DS. However, I can't really afford a place of my own due to not making enough money (hence the conversion to full time, which would guarantee me a certain number of hours), but at this point, I'll settle for having a room of my own with a real bed instead of sleeping on the couch in the living room.

I'm also going to attempt to break out of my rut at work. I've done pretty much nothing but the Jungle Cruise and the Tiki Room for nearly a year, and I'm starting to get bored. So, I'm going to attempt to cross-train to Steam Trains (since they come back from an extensive refurb next week and there are several new trainers over there, it shouldn't be too hard), and I'm going to apply for trainer at Jungle. I should have made trainer a year ago, but my points have gotten in the way; if they don't make a big deal about the final written I got in December for attendance, I'll actually be able to apply this time. Being a trainer would mean I'd still be spending just as much time at Jungle as I do now, but in a capacity that's different enough to hopefully keep me interested. Gaining trainer status would also open the door for me to become a lead on either Jungle or Special Events, which interests me a good deal more. Plus, there's a nice little pay differential for training shifts.

If, for whatever reason, I don't make trainer, it's looking increasingly likely that I'm going to transfer to subs, at least for a while. Oddly enough, it's the costume that put that thought back into my brain. As I am forever griping, my main positions require me to dress like a twelve year old Cub Scout or a fat Hawaiian man. Oh, we used to wear the Indy costumes at Jungle, which are wonderfully feminine and flouncy and fun. But since we switched to our own "unique" costume (the same one they use at Jungle and Kilimanjaro in Florida), I've been mistaken for a man four times. FOUR TIMES. I am not boy-shaped, people! Both the Jungle and Tiki costumes are unisex, meaning they design the clothing for men and expect women to wear it too. But while the subs costumes are very similar for both sexes, the tops are distinct. Granted, the only visual difference is that what's blue on the men's shirt is orange on the women's and vice versa, but this distinction means that the women's shirts can be cut to fit women, and so are much, much more flattering. I got to wear the costume when I worked the cast preview last week, and the other two girls (both skippers) and I were all talking about how great the costumes looked on us, despite our very different body types. Getting to actually feel like a girl in my costume would be a very nice change of pace. (Going to Trains would also be acceptable; though all conductors wear identical three-piece blue suits, the vests for women are tailored, resulting in a very flattering look.) I also really, really like the ride (I've ridden it three times already), and I wouldn't mind spending an entire shift doing nothing but managing the four-hour line, a fact which has driven many of the subs opening crew back to their original areas. Plus, since the subs are now running (if not yet really open) and very short-staffed, I could be relatively certain of never ever having to work the seventh circle of Hell that is Autopia, where most of the people who transferred before the ride was up spent the duration. Whatever I decide, or whatever is decided for me, a change of pace is most definitely in order.

Of course, none of that will happen if I get a yes from WDI. If that happens, I have to put in the transfer paperwork that will let me leave the resort on good terms and must start searching post-haste for an apartment in the Glendale area. (The commute from here to Glendale on the 5 makes rush hour on the 57 look like the Indy 500, and public transit to WDI looks to be convoluted at best; simply finding an apartment down here no matter where I end up isn't exactly the best of options.) Then the million dollar question becomes: will they want to keep me on full-time, and will they care if I don't immediately return to school and finish my degree?

See, that's the other variable in my situation right now. I've been in something of an academic downslide since I started working at Disneyland, when having a real and potentially career-making job drastically altered my priorities and goals. This past semester was exceptionally bad, and I had been debating taking a leave of absence from school, until they sort of made the decision for me by suspending me for the semester until I can get my shit together. The problem is, I already don't want to go back, and wherever I end up, I get the feeling that doing the whole working adult thing is going to make me even less inclined to go back and deal with the petty academic bullshit. So the best case scenario that I'm holding out hope for is that WDI will hire me on for this internship, and will like me enough to offer me a full-time position before I finish my degree.

But even that has issues. I've been sort of set on the idea that I'd have another year left at the park. I've made some really wonderful friends here, and despite the stress and occasional tedium, I do really love my job. I didn't really have any qualms about taking the summer off when I knew that it could only be the summer, and that I'd be back in the fall. The idea that the best thing that can happen to me means leaving for good in the next couple of weeks is a little scary.

Of course, that's getting way ahead of myself.

So, it isn't that I don't have any idea what I'm going to do with my life, specifically the most immanent portion of my life. It's that I have a ton of damn ideas, and I can't put any of them into action until I get this one. Damn. Phone call. It's beyond frustrating. I'm pretty much constantly nauseous from the stress, and I'm having difficulty looking forward to anything else. For instance, I turn 21 in less than two weeks. I should be freaking out about that, but it doesn't seem as important. I'm going to Club 33 in July, and it keeps slipping my mind. I can't even do my writing on any of my projects, because my brain just isn't working that way.

So, I sit and wait. And wait. And wait. And maybe someday soon, I'll be able to continue with my life. Just not yet.
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05:54pm 21/03/2007
  I <3 the Internet. I spent like 20 minutes in the CDO, trying to find some resource that would help me work on my writing portfolio. No dice. I try Google, and the second result is a comprehensive guide on creating a professional writing portfolio. Whee! I'm thinking I'll include my article on the Pirates premiere, my 24-hour play, the short story I got published, "Poetic License", some scripts from Song of Avalon, and maybe some pages from Fairy Godmother or a passage from one of the novel drafts of Song of Avalon (possibly not those, though, since Ann did say that they wanted published material). That should be enough; I'm actually hoping it's not too much. I'm trying to stick to pieces that show off my sense of humor and are mostly upbeat--Disney-friendly stuff, basically. While I love "Vaccine," a disease that wipes out the world isn't terribly Disney.

Yes, I'm back. Much has happened in the, what, year or so since I've bothered to touch this blog? Rather too much to go into. I'm still at Disneyland and still slacking my way through college. Not much else to it.

So now I'm off to maybe grab some food, then hunt for insurance for my new car and slog through more of Infinite Jest. Ugh, I hate that book.
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Wherein Brittany attempts to be academic and whatnot   
09:47am 08/11/2006
  Yes, it's that time of year again: time to start looking at classes for next semester. I played with the schedule a bit last night at work (because I think I've figured out my schedule for every semester that I've been here while at the helpdesk) and came up with something that should work out.

MWF 09:00-09:50 Paleontology
TR 09:00-12:00 Drawing I
MWF 10:00-12:00 Sculpture I
MW 13:15-14:30 The Big Topics in the Contemporary Novel
MW 14:45-16:00 Chaucer Seminar
TR 14:45-16:00 Playground Games

Yeah, you're reading that right. It's a relatively heavy classload, but I don't think it'll be terribly bad. Paleontology is listed at the same level as Rocks for Jocks, but it fits into my schedule and sounds more interesting, and I'm told the professor's pretty cool. Sounds like the right combination of fun and easy, and it lets me get my Jurassic Park on. I'm not particularly interested in the Chaucer seminar, but I need to take a 170, and I really want to take a class with Meg before she goes on leave next year. Novel Topics sounds interesting, is with one of my favorite teachers, and I need a contemporary lit class anyway. Playground Games is with my archery coach from last year, and it sounds like nice, easy fun.

The thing that really makes me insane is taking two art classes at once. They're both studio classes, so you do a lot of your work in class, but you're also expected to finish up projects outside of class, which can take quite a while, I'm told. But I've been wanting to take Drawing for a while (and I'm guaranteed a spot next semester), and I need an extra credit to balance out my dropped Media Studies class this semester. Plus, it's looking pretty unlikely that Pixar is going to have any internships other than technical director, so I'm looking into the Imagineering internship program. A couple of art classes would definitely look good on my record.

The nice thing about this schedule is that I'll have class MTWR 09:00-16:00, and that's it. I'll have evenings completely free the entire week. I'll be done by 10:00 on Fridays, which means I can give Disney availability starting at noon. So while it's a fair amount of class, it's very compact class. And since I don't have a screenwriting class next semester (thank frakking Christ) I won't have that constant drain on my time and creativity.

So, we'll see what happens. I'm battling some major senioritis right now, though I think it's more real-world-itis. With a real job and a social life completely unrelated to campus, it's hard to care about school sometimes. But, while I've realized that ultimately, no one's going to give a damn what I majored in, it is fairly important that I get a degree in something. I'm doing my best.
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01:10am 05/11/2006
  So, this is a fairly long rambling about my current screenwriting project, cut for your convenience and sanity. Clicky clicky if you dareCollapse )  
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