Thursday, September 27, 2012


I started volunteering at a cat shelter.  I quickly learned several things:

1. There really are crazy cat people
2. Despite my enjoyment of cats, I am not one of them
3. Just because you are not allergic to one cat doesn't mean you won't be allergic to 20 cats
4. Crazy cat people are fucking crazy

My favorite is Cupcake, a tiny ghostly gray thing with the most outgoing personality I have ever seen in an animal.  She is extremely affectionate and likes to climb up my back to lay across my neck like a catfur stole.  I let this happen for a couple of seconds until I get nervous, because...she bites.

I love her, but her name is stupid.  Cupcake.  I would probably name her Mary Pickford.

Monday, September 24, 2012

I've finally learned not to share news prematurely. 

Instead I write cryptic little shit that I can look back on later and say, "A ha! That."

Saturday, September 22, 2012


It's a Fuck You Saturday.

If you are cool in any way, then you know about Achewood's Fuck You Fridays.  No?


You're welcome.  Now it's up to you to figure out what Judas Priest Friday is.  Trust me, it's better than FYF.  Oh fine here it is.

Anyway, on this Fuck You Saturday, I am saying fuck you to the entire world, existence, consciousness, America, school, and anything that I don't specifically like right now.

I just explored this a little via email with my bff, but she's biking across the country right now and I'm keeping the word count reduced to short bursts so she doesn't wreck her bike reading it.  I could never text while riding a bike.  Kids!

My problem is the feeling of suffocating personal guilt that comes with slacking off.  I'm always reading these articles or blurbs about how Americans are too results-driven, too busy, too obsessed with cramming productivity into every second of the day.  Obviously, this is not descriptive of ALL Americans, but it is part of the general ethic here.  We're expected to be raring to work until we literally die.  I've had plenty of jobs where the employer expects their employees to be frenetically active throughout the entire work day, and continually piles unreasonable amounts of work on them, creating a frantic, tortured environment in which people are constantly afraid of being fired because they can't do the work of three people without making mistakes.

That kind of environment conditioned me to believe that not being absolutely harried by my workload somehow meant I wasn't getting anything done.  Work wasn't work unless it was accompanied by stress.  It's taken me a year to cycle out of that mentality and feel satisfied with my current working style.  Fuck you, old job!  The last thing I'll say about that is if you have ever fantasized about telling a particularly awful employer to righteously fuck themselves on your last day of work, DO IT.  You'll never regret it.  I wrote an email to my old boss that was so spectacularly horrible, he threatened to sue me.  Probably because I cc'ed the entire company on it.  Do I regret that?  OF COURSE NOT IT WAS AWESOME.

The point of all of this is that I have a lot of shitty and boring things on my to-do list.  I'm not doing any of those things today because I do not feel like it, which means I now feel guilty and bad, like I am breaking a law.  I seriously cannot wait until school is over and I can just work like a normal human being and then do whatever the hell I want for the rest of my day.  School better fuck off unless it wants its own nasty email.

Instead of all that, tonight I am drawing pictures for my new ~professional blog~ while listening to Norwegian satanic black metal covers of Beatles songs.  Because it's Fuck You Saturday, and I do what I want. 

1. Americans are torturing themselves and others as usual
2. The memory of telling my old employer off still sweetly tucks me into bed at night sometimes
3. I'm slackin' off and drawing a coat of arms for my futureself,

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


It's the 1895 Charles Pugh House.

Queen Anne style.  I have read on the internets that it was a "bordello," but have yet to find any real corroboration for that.  (Every old house/hotel/anything was allegedly once a speakeasy or a brothel and I just feel like, make with the sources or GTFO)  It was a rooming house from the 1930s to the 1970s, and in the 1990s it was a restaurant, or a series of restaurants.  That was its last iteration, and I think it has been vacant for at least 10 years, probably more.  My grandmother just told me that my great-grandmother, a real estate agent, sold this house to one of the restauranteurs about 25 years ago.  wtf mate.

Gossip indicates that it's owned by two very old sisters who think it is worth $$$$$$, which may be why they're still holding onto it.  If they thought it was worth so much, you'd think they'd maintain it.  It might actually be, then.  They probably just mean the land, of course.  Bitches.

Well, I'm glad to know the basics.  It's one of like, two? or three Queen Annes remaining in the city and is foremost among the most endangered historic properties we have. 

I didn't prowl around it today because I was running late, however I will definitely be skulking in the future, and I have the remaining survivor Victorians on my list as well. 

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Knipe House Update

December 2011



Oh, remember?  There was a fire.


Front. No more second floor.

Back. Phone camera doesn't zoom. Click on it.

The latter pictures are kind of gigantic, so closeups can be had.

Here's an article from April about the house.  Not much info, but it's the most recent I have seen.  Excerpt from a 2010 article:

"I’ve often thought that preservationists have a 'sixth sense' about buildings and sites.  They’re able to see the incredible 'after' in looking at the dirty, drab, and dilapidated 'before.' (DUH! -AUTHOR) Yes, the Knipe House is looking forlorn, but I remember Barbara Stocklin, our city’s historic preservation officer, saying that it is structurally sound but does need a new roof."

I think the press from this restoration will make Knipe much more well-known in Phoenix.  I'm seeing his name here and there in my researching of other stuff.  He drew the plans for ASU's old Industrial Arts building, and I think the 3 remaining PUHSD buildings on Monroe, around 6th.  See post-renovation photos at the bottom of their Wikipedia entry.  A delightful woman I know from the museum world got to go into those buildings 5+ years ago before they were renovated, and would only describe the interior with sounds.  "Peh! Ew! Uh uh!"  I wish I could have seen inside them!  Why do I only like moldering, fucked up stuff?  Picture of me.

Anyway, the same architect (Norman Marsh) designed all the PUHSD buildings, the Industrial Arts building, and the Monroe School, which is the subject of my research, so I am trying to find out if Knipe worked on it as well. 


Monday, September 17, 2012

Dear World,

You are cruel.  Andrew Eldritch was right to say so. 

For only in a horrible place does this happen, in a desert so sadly deficient in historical properties of interest:

Do you notice the scalloped siding?  It is pink and purple.

The front yard is all concretey, and there is a very primitive and ugly add-on to the back that looks like a kitchen.  I'm thinking this was a rooming house, or some kind of commercial property, once.  I was going to explore the front area some more, but a guy was asleep behind the planter, so, maybe later.  You can see his knee in the shot. 

The sadder thing about finding a loner like this, so strange yet partially invisible between parking lots and modernity, is that it was once simply part of a neighborhood.  Rows and rows of pretty little Victorian houses once stood on the site where I routinely lose my car in a confusing garage. 

Old photos of the R*ss*n House (someone local found this blog while searching for the house recently and it alarararmed me because I don't want some 75 year old docent who thinks I'm a nice young lady to be reading this blog!  What good is a life unless you can bitch about it free of ramifications!  Double life.  Anyway, a picture of "that other Victorian house in Phoenix" from the 19-teens showed streets of similarly-outfitted two-story Victorians behind it, heading down what I guess was 6th Street from Monroe. 

Some piece of shit (generations of them) systematically knocked down every one of those to put up something commonplace, ugly, and unnecessary.  The Mercado is now part of ASU Downtown, but what about the other twenty-five years it sat empty and worthless?  Glad we lost irreplaceable pieces of history for that.  (I realize those houses were probably knocked down like 3 decades before the Mercado was built but that is not the POINT.)  I would make a comment about how these practices only drag the city down, but no one in this town one cares anyway.  They love their strip malls; they prefer them! 

Anyway, this house is on 2nd Ave, south of Fillmore.  Or, next to hipster travesty the Crescent Ballroom.

It's probably full of unpleasantness in the form of arachnids and/or crack users, but I would so like to go inside.  Actually, it looks pretty well sealed up.  Later on I'll research the address and see what it was.

ETA: It was a restaurant in the 90s.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Caitlin Moran on Lady Gaga

"Ultimately, I think it's going to be very difficult to oppress a generation of teenage girls who've grown up with a liberal, literate, bisexual pop star who shoots fireworks out of her bra and was listed as Forbes magazine's seventh most powerful celebrity in the world."


I sort of missed the whole Lady Gaga introduction to the world, because I don't listen to contemporary pop music ever or follow it in any way.  But then I saw her on the Oprah channel (I love the Oprah channel fuck. YOU!) and realized that she's a totally awesome rad mensch re: using her celebrity to further the progress of a multitude of extremely relevant causes.  So, now I like her.  Her music is not really my steeze, but she does have a pretty great voice.

And I agree with Caitlin.  Unless you are a complete fucking idiot, Lady Gaga's message is 100% positive and extra valuable because it is reaching so many people at once.  She is relentlessly pro-gay rights, pro-female body image, pro-anything denigrated, made fragile or under attack by the dominant culture or hysterical political factions.  It's amazing to me, nearly unbelievable, that someone can be sincere about their intent and the image they project and still rise to the top of the one of the most superficial industries in the world, but I guess people just really like dance music. 

And that's what's going on with that shit.