Em ơi! #320: Bears, bears, bears

Finally another comic.  This one files under QL795.B4 L86 2010, for Zoology — Animal behavior — Stories and anecdotes — Special.  By common name of animal, A-Z — Bears.  You can read some articles about the bears here and here.  It turns out black bears are pretty harmless (they like to eat fruit, not runners), and there haven’t been any mentions of them in the paper since the beginning of the summer, so I’m probably safe.

My favorite new classification is officially HQ76.965.B42, for The Family. Marriage. Woman–Human sexuality. Sex–Sexual minorities–Homosexuality. Lesbianism–Gay and lesbian culture–Special topics, A-Z–Bears. I just found it while I was looking the QL795 one up.  I will have to come up with something to file under that.

Continue reading “Em ơi! #320: Bears, bears, bears”

First published short story: When I Ruled the World

You can find it here, if you’re so inclined.  Though I have another one that got picked up first, the folks at Wilde Oats got their issue out faster.  It was fun to work with them, and I’m so chuffed to be a part of their zine.  Do take a moment and look over the other pieces they’ve selected for your enjoyment and edification.

Bibliographic citation:

Lupton, E. H.  “When I Ruled the World.”  Wilde Oats.  5 (August 2010): Retrieved from the internet 9 August 2010.  http://www.wildeoats.com/When-I-Ruled-The-World-by-EH-Lupton.

Maybe a new comic tomorrow, too!  I’m excited.

Em ơi! #319: Greek Prefixes Forever

1. For those interested, more on polyphasic sleep here and here.  The idea is that you sleep 20 minutes every four hours (e.g.) instead of 8 hours every 16 hours.  This is quite useful for those of us without enough time to accomplish things, but sadly, it doesn’t seem like it would work well in conjunction with my major hobby (i.e., marathon running, which can require being on one’s feet for 4+ hours).  I was not interested in it sufficiently during the last period of my life in which I could have implemented it (undergrad), so I’ve never tried it.  I really could have used the extra time this summer, but with the two-three week adjustment period being so painful, I couldn’t afford to undergo that and trust that my grades would stay up.  And since having more study/writing time was the whole point of the exercise, well…  My current system of going to bed at 22:00 (which usually means 22:45 or 23:00) and getting up at 6:00 is pretty tenable, but I don’t know that I could do it long-term.

It turns out, believe it or not, that running 5-7 miles per day (up to 16 on the weekend, like yesterday) and biking 17-18 miles per day (my normal commute) takes a lot of sleep to sustain.  Who knew?

2. This site is now accessible via http://pretensesoup.com.  Please update your bookmarks so that if I move to a new server, the transition will be smooth.

3. This comic is filed under RA786.L86 2010, for Public aspects of medicine — Public health.  Hygiene.  Preventative medicine — Personal health and hygiene — Sleep — General Works

4.  This comic was funnier when I began work on it two weeks ago.  But it is based on an actual conversation.

Em ơi! #318: My Vietnamese Class (year 3)

There were actually a couple of errors I figured out in the Vietnamese between the time I inked the damn thing and scanned  it.

Um.  But I’m getting much better.  This is about how I felt during the first two weeks of my course.  Week three, I actually started to be much better at listening comprehension.  This coming week is week four – we have our first final, and I’m providing myself with some fun new challenges.  We’ll see how it goes.

This is classified as:

PL4371.L86 2010

For (deep breath):

Languages of Eastern Asia, Africa, Oceania–Austroasiatic languages–Mon-Khmer (Mon-Anam) languages–Individual languages–Vietnamese. Annamese–General works

Oh man, that was complicated.  And I should have been in bed an hour and a half ago.

Fun fact: Vietnamese has the most speakers of any Austroasiatic language.  I didn’t know this – until recently I thought Vietnamese was Sino-Tibetan.  This means I know one Austroasiatic language, one Sino-Tibetan, one Semitic (sort of), one Romance, and one Germanic.  Hm.  Perhaps I should have taken Italian and Spanish instead of Hebrew and Chinese…

Em ơi! #317: Highlights From My First Triathlon

Sorry about the sketchiness/relative badness of the art on this one.  I have not had what could be referred to as “free time” lately.

So, the triathlon.  When I first started running, I was kind of overweight and not really very good at it.  In my first 5k, which I ran with my brother Daniel, his then-girlfriend Claire (I may have mentioned them once or twice), and a couple friends of theirs, I finished almost last.  Not just last in my division, but last.  It was great in some ways, because it was a lot of fun to run with everyone, but coming in so close to the end was a bit humiliating.  I didn’t run another race for about two years.

I’ve since got to be a much better runner and recently I’ve been placing in the top 20 in my division and much nearer to the top overall.  People who have met me AFTER a lot of weight loss and hardcore training seem to have this idea of me as a natural athlete, and that just isn’t the case.  I always remember where I used to be…and sometimes, I get to revisit those times.

All in all, I didn’t have a terrible race (except for the swim portion, which was terrifying).  I inhaled about half the lake, and coughed for the rest of the day.  Despite this, I did finish.  Will I do another?  I don’t know.  I might.  I’m off swimming for a while and just relaxing before I have to throw myself into marathon training in earnest.  Of course, the purpose of a race is not to win, and how I placed is largely unimportant compared to how I felt during the race.  But this was definitely a challenge.  I still have somewhat mixed feelings about it.  Glad I tried it though.

I should add that in panel 3, that orange pyramid is the buoy I’m supposed to be swimming toward.  Panel 5 did actually happen.  And I did actually shout “REALLY?”  The guy holding the flags to direct us all around the turns didn’t seem to get it.

Here are two photographs Bryan took of me, one before the race, one after the swim portion.  For two more fun photos, click the “photos” link at the top of this page and put in my number (1354).

Continue reading “Em ơi! #317: Highlights From My First Triathlon”

Daniel and Claire Get Married

This is (a somewhat crappy scan of) a painting I did for Daniel and Claire in honor of their wedding (which was last weekend, the 12th of June 2010 – I am a bit late getting this up) – for those who are new to the comic, Daniel is my younger brother.  Both he and Claire used to be comic regulars before they moved to Baltimore, so I thought it would be nice to do something in comic form for them.  In reality the comic is four panels wide by two down, but I thought this way I could make it a bit bigger so you could see the details.  It took me a long time to scan.

I’m taking an intensive Vietnamese course which is eating up not only my brain but all my ability to think.  I’m in third year (fifth semester) which will look great on my resume if it doesn’t kill me.

Here’s some of my vocab from the past week (hopefully the text will come out correctly):

  1. thủ thư – librarian
  2. ngoài ra – besides
  3. kinh tế – economy
  4. kế hoạch – to plan
  5. nổi tiếng – famous
  6. di cư to emigrate
  7. ấm – warm
  8. kết hôn – to get married
  9. ly dị – to get divorced
  10. chỉch – to inject (e.g. drugs)
  11. thám tử – detective
  12. hiếp – rape
  13. đao phủ – execution
  14. địn ngục – hell
  15. buồn cươi – funny
  16. tra tấn – torture
  17. bảo hiẻm y tế – health insurance
  18. mìn – mine (e.g. a landmine – mìn nước is a sea mine.)
  19. dân ca – folksongs
  20. khủng hoảng – crisis

The actual topics that I have been studying are left as an exercise for the reader.

So in other news I’m doing my first triathlon tomorrow.  It’s only a sprint, and I know I can do the individual parts (a 1/3 mi swim, 11 mi bike, 5k run) with no particular training…it’s just the transitions that I’m worrying about.  We’ll see how it goes – wish me luck!

This comic is filed under:

ND1460.W44 L86 2010

for:

Painting — Special subjects of painting — Other subjects — Miscellaneous, A-Z — Weddings.

Very appropriate.

Em oi! #316: I Paid Good Money to Look this Dumb

To everyone who warned me that this would happen when I started using the clipless pedals: Thanks, you were right.  The bruise that still lingers on my hip tells the tale better than I could.

File this one under: HE5736 .L86 2010, for:

Transportation and communications — Bicycles — General works