Saturday, April 30, 2005

Bam thwok!

The week is over, things are getting better. Now the fun begins.
Finished 1 homework assignment in each class
Finished Amazons-bot (thanks mostly to Jay)
Read (most) of the plays proposed for Homecoming 2005
Ready for show(s) tomorrow (yeah Scotch on the Rocks!)
Performed improv show tonight (yeah no-format!)
And had a blast doing it all.

One week left of school. Makes me damn sad. Man, I'll miss you guys. If you're reading this, I'll probably miss you.

And if you're reading this, thank you too. This year's been a bit of a crisis for me, a bit of a self-confidence test, a bit of a social trial. Thanks to a few awesome people (okay, a lot of awesome people), I'm mostly back to my old self.

I don't have anything more to say, so... preference vote! Me stopping this entry: 6 for, 1 against, 2 abstentions. Call for a vote: 7 for, 1 against, 1 abstention. WOOO formality!

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Quite the day

Wow, today was a day.
Board preview, woo, went well, that's all. 1 week till showtime!

Elections! Board for next year = awesome! Oh yeah... and I'm an EBM. Whoa. I am very surprised- a no-talent no-experience punk like me. I'll stop that now, it sounds like compliment-fishing. I can certainly get the job done, I know what's going on, and hopefully I can prevent some feuding silliness. It'll be a good year.

Some homework, a fondue festival at Catherine's, I ate too much, but it was so good. Relaxing with some very good folks. Right on brother. Scotch-n-Soda Theater is the best.

In the meanwhile, one big crunchy week. Wish me luck, and sleep, and the ability to finish things. I'm feeling optimistic. This is one of those weeks that's not just drudgery- it's a challenge. Raargh, let's do it!

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Blogging... the modern prayer

See, when I arrived in Pittsburgh this week, on Monday, after interviewing for a job at Hyland Software in Cleveland (I got the job btw, woo!), I was at the Greyhound station, the epitome of callow youth, wandering around bleary-eyed.

John saw me walking around, asked me for the time. He was average height, weight, whatever... black guy, looked a little scraggly but you couldn't really tell... except his teeth. They were all messed up. I told him the time, then he asked "what are you looking for?" I explained my plight. He introduced himself and walked me over to Fifth Ave. where I could catch my bus. He was a kind old guy, like your nice uncle or something. Then (and who saw this one coming?) he asked me for some money.

Voice A: Don't give him money! They always told you that. Even at your catholic high school. Be compassionate, direct them to help, don't give them money.
Voice B: But...
A: He'll just spend it on booze. Or drugs, or worse.
B: But that...
A: Downtown is shady. You take out your wallet full of suburban-white-kid money, everyone will know you're loaded. If they don't already.
B: But he...
A: It's obvious psychological techniques. You're learning about it in 85-102. Foot in the door: he asks you for the time, then money, you give him some. Reciprocity: he helps you, you feel obligated to help him.
B: Well...
Me: Sorry, man, I don't have any money with me.
John: Come on man, just one dollar, that's all I ask.
A: Look, "just $1" he says. You can't buy any food for that, it's just for his next drink. Besides, you can't give him money now, you just said you don't have any.
B: But it's just...
A: Fine. Give him a dollar. Then get on your damn bus.
(I give John $1 and get on the bus)


B: Fuck! You gave him $1? Look, the guy needs help! Give him a few bucks. Or there's a Wendy's around the corner, buy him dinner. He just walked down, I dunno, 5 blocks out of his way to help you out. If, say, a cab driver did that, you'd give him a couple bucks tip. You can't assume he's some subhuman because he's a beggar. He didn't look or smell like a drunk or a druggie, maybe that's all part of his scheme, but damn! Your taking his directions and giving him a measly dollar doesn't help anyone.

On this day of silence, here's a silent internet modern secular blog-bullshit prayer. Sorry John, I shouldn't have stiffed you like that. Hope you're doing all right. Maybe you just totally fooled me with your ruse, and you're a mugger or a nasty liar, but I hope you're just honestly trying to get by.

So if you're downtown and a black guy named John with bad teeth helps you out, ... I don't know what. Help him out too.

Sunday, April 17, 2005


AKA the Wiz!

Because that's all I did during carnival... I saw the booths for about 45 minutes with my family today. Other than that, it was Wiz, party, sleep. Man, so much fun. The Wiz was pretty fun- I'm not going to lie, it had boring bits, I mean being Extra McChorus, it's not thrilling acting-wise. But hey, still a big production, still fun people! So I'll list some highlights, stream-of-consciousness wise or something

Dorothy: Toto! Where are you, Toto?
Aunt Em: Dorothy? Is that you? I've been needing your help all afternoon!
Dorothy: Soon as I find Toto, Aunt Em. Toto!
Uncle Henry: (enters with bucket on head) Uncle Henry Uncle Henry Uncle Henry! (hits head with fists) Uncle Henry Uncle Henry! (trips over stage lights, falls into cyc, pulling it down with him)
Pit: (looks confused)
Danielle: (Kills Dan Tasse with sticks) (some sharp, some blunt)
Laurel: Go to bed!
Bees: Wheeeeeeeee!

Apparently I gurgle. Brian Gray impromptu-style invited us to crash at his house, and we talked about improv, and he makes tea with flair. And let me just say, he was a great face for the organization as AD, and one of the reasons I stayed involved in those pivotal first few weeks.

So my name got painted on the fence again. My Henderson friends, I'm sorry I haven't seen you in like a week, because I've been so busy w/ the play. But you're awesome to paint my name on the fence. See, everyone has been so profusely declaring admiration for me recently, I feel very awkward. Unfortunately, in some cases, I have been assuming that such adulation is somewhat condescending: if you really admire someone, you'd be more discreet about it. And if it's condescending, then it's like "cute little Dan..." but then that person puts me on a lower status level, which makes it hard for me to ever have a good friendship with that person, which is too bad. But I guess sometimes it isn't: it's genuine appreciation, and if people are truly that gracious, I'm kind of an ass for assuming they aren't. So I apologize to those people, if I fail to acknowledge your kindness, I'm sorry.

(said in a Will Haines voice when there's a lull in the conversation) Will Haines. Geez, for all the crazy things you've done and said this week, you deserve a mention here. Even though you'll never read this, because you think it's stupid, and it is. So normally I'd say you're my hero, but because said things this week include sledgehammering the wall of my existence and wearing a unitard onstage (not sure which is worse), I will point you out as an excellent foil. If I were an author, I'd create contrasting characters like us- like the Darkness and the Shins. Which makes things fun- if all of your friends are just like you, what's the point?

Oh yeah, the Shins played. People whined about "they're not a great concert band" and "low-energy." What do you expect? They're the Shins! They played Saint Simon, I was happy.

And Julie Brown. Well obviously a mention of your feuding rival Will begs a mention of you, but you are such a cool kid in your own right (kid in an entirely non-condescending way) and I'm glad I got to hang out with you, be it at Eat'n'Park or whatever else crazy thing happened this week. You are one person I always enjoy spending time with. Goodwill is so good. And if I'm a doctor and you ever have a fatal incurable disease, I'll let you know. Be sure to hang out in Webster a lot next year.

Eat'n'Park midnight breakfast buffet: $6.99
Future medical bills: $20,000.00
If I had to pay a dollar for each calorie I ingested tonight: $1000-2000
Flannel shirt: $4
Nice black pants: $4
Goodwill store: $excellent
Oh right, there's supposed to be a priceless in here somewhere.
Endless Cyc, Dave Pellow, and Choad jokes: priceless.

Wow, so there you go. Carnival. Further updates may follow as I regain my memory.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

I heart hummus

See "Hummus"

And also bread from Schatz. And Theresa is the best in the long run. So we took some bread from Schatz, very sneakily, they didn't notice at all. Although we are bad thieves; if they had been on their guard, we wouldn't have had a chance. Anyway, we got said bread, which turned out to be marble rye and regular rye, and then decided that, of course, we needed hummus! So we had a feast of bread and hummus for all to enjoy. It was awesome.

Oh yeah, the wiz run was cool too.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005


Everyone hates them. I mean, they're like squirrels. Seeing one every now and then is fine, but after that, they start biting and you get rabies. I should stop, even though I always say I'll stop and I never do. Puns, and stupid things that don't mean anything. Maybe I'll just talk less. Nope, that's no good either, then I fade into obscurity like Eiffel 65 after "Blue - da ba dee."

But puns are right out!

Sunday, April 10, 2005

The fence

What?? So I wake up in the afternoon, as it pleases me to do, and I go to the fence, and it has "We (heart) Dan Tasse" on it. My house, Henderson that is, is crazy.

Hah! Wiz load-in tonight! Hah!

In other news, got cast as an extra in Scotch on the Rocks. Well, that's cool I guess. A speaking part would have been nice (hooray straight plays!) but you can't win them all. Well it'll be fun, I'll be in the productions, which is cool... I guess the only bit that bugs me is that it means I was about 9th out of 10 male auditioners or something. Which, in all fairness, is probably true- I am not a great actor; I can count my acting experiences not just on one hand, but in fact on the cuticles of one finger (there are two, right? One on each side of the nail?) I guess I just got my hopes up when they kept saying how much they needed actors.

Also I'm dreaming like one crazy son of a gun. 4 vivid dreams over one night on Friday night.

I said "shoot, I'm having so many dreams, I don't know what's real. I should just remember this, this is real." But then I woke up, and it wasn't.
-from my dream log. Yeah, I log dreams. It's awesome, makes for good reading.

We were in a coliseum, in the stands. In some bizarre sport, people kept getting killed. But then the central guy leading this whole thing picked out one kid I knew, a CS major, not really a friend, and came up to me, and said "Do you want to see this guy sacrificed?" I said "Not particularly." So he said "Okay, I've got a better idea. We'll execute you both!" And then they dragged us away to prepare us for execution. I was laughing and having a good time, thinking, basically, the best way to beat the system is to be grinning until you die.
-also from the dream log.

Load-in! Hah!

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Let me just post this too:

So apparently there's an "OMG Center for Collaborative Learning." Yeah, it's next to the "ROFLport," the "WTF Children's Hospital," and the "BRB Community Center." And to top it all off, someone named Tania Tasse (no relation) works there.

Nothing to say

I really like most things in life. I feel like an insincere jerk- didn't you always hate that always-positive kid in high school? Yeah, I did too- actually, envied him. Somehow I've become more positive. Well not really. Just more energetic I guess. Well, positive too. If you can float through life on that cloud (condensed and frozen into ice, because otherwise you'd fall through it. But ice would sink.) Let me start over. If you can float through life on that big puff of lighter-than-air cotton, soaring over the trenches and crags of problems, more power to you. Well, not really; then you'd just complacently wander around, not doing anything. If you can climb the mountain of life with never-dulling pickaxes and grappling hooks, wearing a cheery grin and catching other climbers when they stumble among the weeds and roots, then when you hit the summit (and die), then you are my hero.

So I didn't really say anything useful in that whole paragraph. So I give you this bit of information, in the style of Dr. Balls:

Sikkim is a landlocked Indian state nestled in the Himalayas. It is the least populous state in India, and the second smallest. Sikkim was an independent state ruled by the Chogyal monarchy until 1975, when a referendum to make it India's twenty-second state succeeded. The thumb-shaped state borders Nepal in the west, Tibet to the north and east, and Bhutan in the south-east. The Indian state of West Bengal borders Sikkim to its south. The official language is Nepali, and the predominant religions are Hinduism and Vajrayana Buddhism. Gangtok is the capital and largest town. Despite its small size, Sikkim is geographically diverse, owing to its location at the Himalayan foothills. Terrain ranges from tropical in the south to tundra in the north. Kanchenjunga, the world's third highest peak, is located in Sikkim, straddling its northern border with Nepal. Sikkim has become one of India's most visited states owing to its reputation for untouched scenic beauty and political stability.

Monday, April 04, 2005

HaHA! It's 4 AM!

And therefore time for a post! My reversal-of-sleep is getting silly, I went to bed at 7 AM, woke up at 3 PM today, now sleeping at 4 AM. I need to fix this, but it's not urgent- tonight I was applying for jobs, which is one of those things that needs to get done but there's never really time. Yesterday it was chilling with Joe and Tim, and before that, hanging out with Tim and Connor and Phil, and before that, a very short party that involved firebreathing but not much else interesting, and before that, the S'n'S movie party, which was fun although before-my-time. Hahaha seeing everyone as freshmen and sophomores- Joe, Beej, Ram, Alex A, Court, et. al.

Wow, I just saw Sin City tonight. Whoa. So good! So violent and disturbing! I wish I had a video camera so I could see my faces while watching that- it'd be a mix of "Wow!", "What?!", "Oh shit!", and "(grimace because someone just got decapitated, or shot in the, err, groin, or all limbs cut off and fed to a dog (God, just thinking about that movie I'm grimacing))" So good though! Could possibly become the next Matrixesque cult classic. It's like Pulp Fiction, except with some resolution! I really like it.

Okay, social commentary of the moment: about the way people refer to other people. (this is all just me rambling, I stole the idea of status from improv and theater in general I guess, but other than that, it's all my own thoughts, so take it with a grain of salt, or maybe a one-centimeter salt cube)

By first name ("Fred")- Could indicate best-friend-ship; most of the time, you refer to your best friends by first name only. At least I do. Could also indicate uniqueness: if there's only one Fred that you and people you're talking to know, you usually call him "Fred." ("Did you hear about when Fred...") However, also sometimes indicates you hardly know someone, because it's kind of the default way of referring to someone. Could also indicate that you know the other person but wish you were not talking to him... you just say the first name for the socially required greeting.
Status: Puts the other person slightly above you, or very far away. Or way down.

By last name ("Smith")- Indicates a distance between you and Smith that you don't particularly care to bridge. "Sup Smith?" Common among jocks. And high-schoolers.
Puts the other person slightly below you.

By first and last name ("Fred Smith")- This is common, esp. among S'n'S. It's also tricky. I think that saying it lowers the status of the person you're talking to. (Yeah... ideas from improv. Try not to comment on how Josh is subconsciously converting me to the Johnstone fan club. I think status is pretty universally accepted though.) But even you non-improvvers know what I mean. You might say it to someone you think is a threat to your status, or someone you're slightly uncomfortable around, because it instantly puts you on at least an equal level with them. It shrouds your greeting in a bit of humor, because it's slightly ridiculous to call someone by both names. It makes the greeting a bit more distant, and thereby increases your status. If you're looking up to someone, you say first name only. Often used to refer to the joker, the class clown, who you know but don't really know. So what does it mean?

"Hello Fred Smith. I'm acknowledging you, as I must in order to maintain social grace. I'm slightly intimidated by you, I don't want to say your first name only, because that could be interpreted as me looking up to you. Or maybe I think I'm a bit above you, and I want to shroud my greeting in humor so it doesn't look like I'm talking to you as a complete equal. So I think I'm on about an equal level with you, but I want to make sure you know it too. You can't refute this or respond; all I'm saying is your name. Or it could just be that I respect you, and I know you too well to be on a first-name basis because I hardly know you, but not well enough to be on a first-name basis because we're best friends."

It's a really passive-aggressive greeting, I think. Could be devastating if used by a manipulative prick, or it could be just the little edge that someone needs to feel comfortable in a social situation.

Nickname (personal): This is a nickname created by two people from a mutual inside joke. Indicates great respect for the other person, a close friendship, and a desire to perpetuate the inside joke. Is it just me, or are inside jokes a really good way to better friendships?

Nickname (common): A nickname that everyone calls that person. Indicates a level of comfort- if you really don't know someone, you just call that person by his first name. But beyond that, it doesn't say much, because everyone calls him that.

Silly greeting: i.e. "Hello, Glasses McMolasses" for someone wearing glasses or something. See "first and last name," except moreso. Saying a first name creates a connection. Doing this doesn't.

I guess it's all about how much you leave yourself open to the other person. With a greeting, or a referral to someone, I think just the first name is as open as you can get. The more you obscure it, the more you try to increase your status against that person by cloaking your greeting. So if "first-last name" indicates you're either +1 or -1 on the Grand Status Scale, then "Dr. Elmonius Q. Arsenic son of Gladiolus the Repugnant, IV, DDS, MD, Esq." indicates +/- 3. Although I'm not sure. You wouldn't say that to someone you're afraid of, unless you're sure he will think it's funny. And you wouldn't waste such an elaborate nickname on someone who's way below you.

You'll notice I emphasized the "first-last name". This is because, to most people in S'n'S, I am a "first-last name", that is, I'm "Dan Tasse." (and they are "first-last name"s to me) I guess that's good, it means I'm about on equal footing with most. For about a semester and a half, I felt like undoubtedly a first-namer, and not in the best-friends way.

Or maybe I'm entirely crazy about all of this. Any thoughts? (besides, "fuck, it's 4 AM, why am I not asleep?!") Maybe I'll refine all this later, these are just quick ideas.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Another week

Another set of homework, classes, and lots of talking about homework and classes. And tiredness. When I'm not in class or doing homework, I don't want to be talking about classes and homework! I need to clear that away more.

Hey, I was sick this week. I think I'm better though. Just a cold.

I was in my first improv show tonight too... it was fun, even though I somewhat-largely got the nerves, which didn't end up resulting in anything awful, uh just me missing a "this is the last scene" note, being indecisive while pimping, forcing and driving a scene, and just not generally having a particularly "on" night... but whatever, I'm probably being too picky. Everyone has a first show. And it was fun, I heart improv.

Hooray the Wiz I guess, it's going fine, although rehearsing every night is tough. Well, it doesn't get easier I guess. I hope I get cast in Scotch on the Rocks for something, that looks like a lot of fun.

So, really, I have nothing to say. Hooray for a blog, so I can shout to the world "I have nothing to say!"