Scott Bakula, Productivity, Something That Rhymes With Bob, Goals, Or Why We May Go Crazy This Week…

By: Kiki Keane and Rachel Womek

We are back! Like genital warts, you just can’t get rid of us! What have we been up to? I (Rachel) have been applying for a new rhymes with “bob”, watching shows about food and fantasizing about Scott Bakula. (What’s this Scott Bakula? You’ve brought me bacon flavored ice cream? My hero!). And I (Kiki) have been feverishly reading, watching TV, sleeping and eating my weight in popcorn (with lots of butter and parmesan cheese). I was, however, somewhat productive trip wise. I made an appointment to get our shots for the upcoming trip. We will have to drive about 4 hours to get to the clinic, but I guess that’s the price one pays to get inoculated against yellow fever and typhoid. Rachel is apprehensive about getting such shots, but I (Kiki) would rather get shot up with the vaccine than die that terrible death. I (Rachel) am apprehensive about getting several vaccinations at once, but I’ll suck it and just die a terrible death from vaccine reaction instead of a terrible death in Egypt. Is one death worse than another? I suppose it’s preference. For example, Kiki would much rather die by gunfire than drown.

It is also goal day!


What did I accomplish? Far more than I usually do, I am happy to report. I finished two books, though neither of them were trip relevant. However, I have started two trip relevant books, so that makes up for it, right? Right? I watched three movies, all of which I am embarrassed to admit that I’ve watched (Leap YearHead Over HeelsLook Who’s Talking). I also called the vaccine place and made an appointment. So, I guess I rocked this week! I have, however, panicked more than once and forgot to call about the visas.

New Goals:

1) Finish a fictional book and a book relevant to my trip 2) Watch a movie 3) Call the visa people 4) Not panic 5) Finish 1984


I did moderately well on my own goals. I read Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore and One Good Dog by Susan Wilson. No more sappy dog based fiction for me! I took some pictures for the blog. I’ll get them up tomorrow. I put up Haiku on the blog. I have been slacking a little on Kiora’s trick but she has had several good sessions last week. I applyed for two postions today. Hurray! It wasn’t one of my goals but I also watched one film this week: Inception. It was very good, I should have watched it sooner.

New Goals: 1) Read two more books 3) Watch one movie 4)Apply for 4 positions 5) Post lots of photos on the blog

Joint Goals:

We studied Arabic! Maybe not as much as we should have, but certainly more than we have in the past.

New Goals:

1) Study Arabic Rigorously

Categories: Adventure, Books, Goals, Job Hunting, Life, Nerd, Photography, Uncategorized, Work | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

An Uncooperative Roadrunner, Technical Difficulties And What We’re Thinking About, Or Rachel’s Little Rain Cloud…

By Kiki Keane and Rachel Womek

We are writing this blog at my Kiki’s house for the very first time. Normally we head to a bookstore or coffee shop, but today Kiki’s family is out of town and so we can write in peace. Currently, however, Rachel is preoccupied with trying to take a picture of an uncooperative Roadrunner. Yes, I was chasing that little brat around the backyard. He wouldn’t leave but he kept hiding behind things so that I could not get a good shot of him. I could almost here him say: “Meep, Meep!”

And out she runs again! The elusive Roadrunner has flown into the tree. If it had branches, Rachel would be climbing it. She wound-up getting a few shots. Maybe she’ll post them later.

I (Rachel) seem to recall promising such a thing; that is posting a few pictures for you, Constant Readers.

We seem to be experiencing a bit of technical difficulties on the link between the blog and Kiki’s facebook account, which is unfortunate. Computer wizards we are not.

We’ve decided to blog about the things we have been thinking about when we are not consumed with our day-to-day living. Kiki will go first.


I was reading The Marriage Plot today, which to me seems a lot like Frazen’s Freedom, which is to say that it is a big book that tries very hard to say something and ends up saying nothing at all. Anyway, there is one character, Mitchell, I think, who seems to have very little going for him. He is graduating during a recession, he has a dubious degree (religious studies) and has just messed things up (again!) with his crush. The only thing he has to look forward to is his trip to India with his friend. My immediate thought was, OMG! That’s me! (except for the crush part and also the fact that his professor is willing to help him get into a good grad school…). My second thought was, Why can’t I just be excited with my impending trip? Why do have to have cheapen the adventure with thoughts of failure and terrible images of me coming back to this stifling pit of hell with my proverbial tail between my legs. So that’s what I’ve been thinking about all day. Well, that and why the heck wasn’t I born rich?


I don’t have too much to say. I am tired and not in the most joyous of moods. I am having one of those rain cloud types of days, like in the cartoons where the little cloud hangs over their heads. Suffice it to say that something that rhymes with “bob” sucks. Perhaps I will embark on a brand new career opportunity as a Rock Engineer or Rock Cleaning Champion.

Categories: Adventure, Books, Life, Nerd, Photography, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Out With The Old In With The New (Goals)

By Kiki Keane and Rachel Womek

Well…after writing a final paper (Rachel), dog training (I, Rachel, enlisted Kiki against her will to help me train my foster dog. She did well despite her many protestations. And she will not be doing it again because she will go Red Queen on my ass if I ask her again.) and a manhunt for a friend who went a-wall (turns out she was at Burger King), Rachel and I have settled our butts down at our home away from home’s cafe. We are drinking Frappes: a Mayan Mocha for Rachel and Decaf Light Carmel for me (except the barrista put whip and carmel on it so I’m not sure how light the light is). I have a feeling we will wind up in a fluffy chair reading (Rachel: Scientific American–“A Unified Physics?” and Me: Something that is not the book I’m supposed to be reading for my book club, because that’s how I roll these days…).

Anyway, enough of the useless introductions and on with our obsessive goal making.

Kiki: I accomplished one goal: watch a movie (The Avengers). I blame work and work and friends (okay…there’s some avoidance on my part, too).

New Goals: Same as last time: 1) Finish at least one of the books I’ve started and read 1984 2) Work on my book 3) Watch a movie 4) Not panic or have a panic attack about any of the following: my bum status, lack of funds for my upcoming move to Egypt/N. Africa/Mid-East, the fact that I am a single (not actually something I’m upset about), soon to be 28-year-old woman with a cat who lives with her grandparents (don’t judge!).

Rachel: I completed the majority of my goals this week. I did not post photos on the blog. Shame on me! I did study and am now finished with my finals! Hurrah! I Did finish 1984, as well as The Dog Who Danced by Susan Wilson and just today Getting Started Clicker Training For Dogs By Karen Pryor. I am on a roll with reading! (Click.Treat.) I wanted to catch up to my movies and now I only need two more books to be completely even. Maybe I am a little OCD deep down because it bothers me that my book and film numbers are uneven!

New Goals: 1) Read two entire books! Should be doable now that school is out! 2) Get some photos on the blog! For real! 3) Get some more Haiku on the blog (Unless you guys don’t like them: let me know) 4) Train my dog, Kiora, to cover her nose on cue 5) Apply for at least two different positions.

Collective Goals: 1) Arabic 2) One of our books must be trip related 3) Get Rachel’s passport photo

Categories: Books, Dogs, Goals, Life, Media, Nerd, Photography, Uncategorized, Work | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Rockin’ It Goal Style, Or Why We Suck!

By Kiki Keane and Rachel Womek

Today is goal day yet again! I’m sure you are all on tinder-hooks!


Did I meet any goals? Pah! Why would I change my habits now? Just one, dear readers. Just one. I’m not even going to attempt an excuse. I am simply lazy!

The goal I met was #3 and boy did I meet it! I kicked that goal’s ass all the way to Timbuktu! I didn’t watch just one movie, I watched FIVE! This may not seem like that big a deal, but considering that I am apparently incapable of doing what I set out to do I would say I ROCKED IT! I watched all three of the librarian movies, The Raven and A Dangerous Method.

Here are the goals for the upcoming week. I am just going to cut and paste again.

1) Finish at least one of the books I’ve started and read 1984 2) Work on my book 3) Watch a movie 4) Not panic or have a panic attack about any of the following: my bum status, lack of funds for my upcoming move to Egypt/N. Africa/Mid-East, the fact that I am a single (not actually something I’m upset about), soon to be 28-year-old woman with a cat who lives with her grandparents (don’t judge!).

Here is the good news, though! I have a job! So, I can no longer gripe about my unemployment status, but I still reserve the right to complain about the things mentioned in goal #4 (which would mean that I automatically forfeit that goal…).


I only set two simple goals for myself and accomplished only 50%  of them. The goal I did not accomplish was to read 1984 completely. I did not complete it, although I have read about 230 pages; which for me is pretty lame (but I still beat Kiki). Apparently my heart is still beating so I have indeed survived my school week, in the most technical sense. Success!

New goals:

1) Complete 1984 (For real this time!) 2) Complete one other book 3) Get some new photos up on the blog 4) Study diligently

Outside: blazing sun.

Within sugary coffee drinks

And expensive books.

(by Rachel)

Collective Goals: 1) Arabic and 2) Actually blogging

Categories: Books, Destopias, Free Speech, Goals, Job Hunting, Life, Media, Nerd, Photography, Uncategorized, Work | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Blog In Which The Authors Tell Everyone Things They Probably Don’t Care About… Oh, And Some News Stuff

By Kiki Keane and Rachel Womek

Due to a scheduling conflict involving the watching of a certain show called “Game of Thrones,” Rachel is absent for this blog session. So, I (Kiki) will be doing it today.

Today is the one day a week that is eagerly awaited by all, I’m sure. It is goal day! The day that we humble bloggers take stock of our accomplishment (ha!) and failures.

I’ll do Rachel’s first:

Technically Rachel didn’t set any goals last week, or at least she didn’t post them. But this is what she wishes me to put under the “goals met” category: 1) Practiced photography 2) Read 4 books and 3) Watched a couple of movies (I think Hunger Games was one of them).

New Goals: 1) Read 1984 2) Survive the school week


What goals did I meet this week? Well…I’m tired of giving excuses (mainly because I’m running out of them) and I’m sure you’re sick of reading them, so I won’t waste the space. I accomplished exactly 1.5 out of 3. Actually, that’s better than last week! I did half of what I set out to do, so I won’t beat myself up to bad. I finished one book (Carrie, by Stephen King) and I worked on my novel (I won’t be winning the Pulitzer anytime soon).

New Goals: I am simply going to do a cut and paste from last week… 1) Finish at least one of the books I’ve started and read 1984 2) Work on my book 3) Watch a movie 4) Not panic or have a panic attack about any of the following: my unemployment/bum status, lack of funds for my upcoming move to Egypt/N. Africa/Mid-East, the fact that I am a single (not actually something I’m upset about), unemployed, soon to be 28-year-old woman with a cat who lives with her grandparents (don’t judge!).

Collective Goals: 1) Practice Arabic 2) Be blogging goddesses!

Newsy Things:

1) The latest on N. Korea: S. Korean government will be reduced “to ashes”

2) ‘Gaia’ scientist was an ‘alarmist’ about climate change

3) Sudan bombs S. Sudan; 3 killed — moving photos

4) Chinese Murder Mystery

Categories: Books, Destopias, Goals, Life, Media, Nerd, Photography, Uncategorized, Work | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Goals, News and Pulitzers, Or A Really Long Post To Make Up For My Laziness…

By Kiki Keane

Okay, so Rachel and I have not been on the ball lately. It’s been a few days since we’ve blogged and we’re late on our weekly goals post (I’m sure you’ve lost sleep over it).  I guess we’ve been lazier than usual. So, this is going to be a combo post: goals and something…

Rachel hasn’t given me her goals or mentioned what goals she accomplished last week, so she’s going to have mention them on the next post she writes.

I am 1-5 this week, though it’s not for lack of trying. I applied for jobs, but to no avail. Apparently, I am too educated to flip burgers or run a cash register and too inexperienced to ________________ (fill in the blank). I tried to watch The Spy Who Loved Me, but the DVD was scratched, so I only got to the part where Jaws rips off pieces of the van with his bare hands (its not like I have seen it million times or anything…). I guess I could have found another movie to watch, but I was in a Bond mood and that was the only one I could find. Apparently, everyone in Las Cruces was in a Bond mood. I did not read a full book, but I think I read enough of several different books to say I read a full book… Still, I won’t count it. I did not work on the news/profile piece this week. I have no excuse for it. I did, however, work on my novel. Man is it bad! But it passes the time and what else am I going to do with all this time I have (don’t answer that!)?

I think it’s safe to say that I did not work on the collective goals either.

New Goals: 1) Finish at least one of the books I’ve started and read another one 2) Work on my book 3) Watch a movie 4) Not panic or have a panic attack about any of the following: my unemployment/bum status, lack of funds for my upcoming move to Egypt/N. Africa/Mid-East, the fact that I am a single (not actually something I’m upset about), unemployed, soon to be 28-year-old woman with a cat who lives with her grandparents (don’t judge!).

Collective Goals: 1) Learn Arabic 2) Blog

The Something: 

International News: I’ve still been riveted by the North Korea story. Here and here are the latest from Richard Engel. I believe he’s left Pyongyang.

Local News: People sometimes think I’m a bit weird because I’d rather not risk going out at night to walk, or at least not on my own. I know it’s crazy. I mean I want to report on one of the most volatile regions in the world, cover war, revolutions and disasters, but I don’t want to risk going for a walk at night in a small, fairly safe city because something, like rape, might happen. Well, as it turns out, according the New Mexico Department of Health, I live in the state that has the 5th highest prevalence of rape in the country. To break it down, 1-4 New Mexican women will be victims of rape and 1 in 20 men. They also say that the real numbers are probably much higher. And it’s not getting better. It’s getting worse. I know that we have more to fear from the people we know than from strangers, but still…

Books: So, the Pulitzer Prizes have been announced. The big news is that no award was given for fiction, which is the first time since 1977. I find I actually don’t care about that. I am really glad about the photographer who won for his photo of the little girl in the green outfit who is crying/screaming surrounded by people who were killed in a bombing in Afghanistan in December. It is a hard photo to look at, but I remember it very vividly. It so moved me that I splurged and bought the newspaper (it was The New York Times, which is very expensive for a Master’s student in Hawaii).

Also, I’m reading Carrie for the first time. I’m not a King fan. I love his ideas, but there’s something about his style that grates like nails on a chalkboard. However, Carrie seems to be fairly readable. I’ve only cringed twice.

Categories: Books, Goals, Job Hunting, Journalism, Life, Media, Nerd, Photography, Uncategorized, Work | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Got Privilege?

By: Rachel Womek

Whew! What a trip! I am glad to be back, although at this moment I am exhausted. Las Cruces seems so much smaller than Albuquerque. The WPC conference was fantastic. For those of you who don’t know WPC is The White Privilege Conference: A conference addressing social disparity and the unconscious privilege that comes with being white which damages equity in America. This is the 13nth annual WPC conference and people from all over the country came of every race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, and economic status. I had a great time and learned a great deal about social inequality. For instance I learned that there are 1018 active hate groups in America and that nearly half of those hate groups have only sprung up in the last 10 years. During the three days that I was at the conference I was able to attend three keynote speeches and 6 workshops.  The workshops covered a wide range of social equity issues including: “White America and Islamophobia” and “Misuse of Indigenous Land”. I was also able to watch a documentary film: Ann Braden Southern Patriot.

Unfortunately because of privacy I wasn’t able to get any photos of the actual conference. I did, however, get some random photos in the ABQ.

Where the WPC was held

Categories: Free Speech, Media, Photography, Social Equity, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Bit of Progress and Another Nerdgasm

By: Rachel Womek

I’m on a movie watching role! Two days and two movies! I got the Alien Anthology and am working my way through the four films. This means that one goal (watch one movie) has already been fulfilled. As they say at the football match (International football, not American): GOOOAALLLL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The heroine of these films: Ripley, is I feel, one of the best and most authentic female protagonist characters. She is not an over-sexed dominatrix type (think Kate Beckinsale ala Underworld) nor is she an extremely butch woman. She is a hero on the same level as any male hero portrayed in film, and unmistakably female.

In world news a photographer captured a shocking moment as a Tibetan activist protested China’s rule in his country by setting himself on fire.

Here in New Mexico the weather’s warming a bit. I caught a quick snapshot of the mountains:

In non-photography related news:

Today is Leonard Nimoy’s 81rst Birthday!!!! 81 years old and still sexy. For those of you who have been living under a rock since the dawn of man: Leonard Nimoy is the wonderful actor who brought to life the character of Spock in Gene Roddenberry’s Star Trek. This year he’ll be appearing in the more modern hit television series: The Big Bang Theory.

Categories: Adventure, Feminism, Free Speech, Goals, Journalism, Media, Nerd, Photography | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

So Called “Spring Break”

By Rachel Womek:

So I totaled out on books yesterday. I checked out three and I bought three (less than 2 bucks, woot!) and I am currently reading another. Did I mention that I have about 15 more books bought in the past to get through? So many books, so little time.


It’s “spring break” here in NM. They should really call it homework break, how those fratties find the time to party it up I’ll never know; it’s not as if they are being diligent the rest of the semester. My spring break actually is next week when school will be back in session. I am going to a conference in Albuquerque: The White Privilege Conference. Calm down! It’s not what it sounds like. The conference is basically about educating middle class white people about the race based social stratification here in the good ol’ U.S.A.  I am “white”, though not middle class, and am already aware of stratification (the very concept of race is a means of creating social stratification), but the opportunity arose for me to go and I jumped at it. I am leaving next Wednesday and will return that Sunday. Sadly, Constant Readers, I doubt I’ll have internet access, so you’ll have to go without any blogs by me for a few days. Never fear! Kiki will, with eloquence and humor, fill the gap. You can also expect a full report, photos included, upon my return.

Categories: Adventure, Books, Free Speech, Photography, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Panic Attacks, Research, Goals Met And Not Met And Other Topics Of Interest, Or Why Kiki Is Going Crazy…

By Kiki Keane and Rachel Womek

What a week! Rachel finished her book! Actually, she finished three, which means she has made up for her slacker ways of weeks pasts. Kiki, on the other hand, is still a slacker.

Trip news: We looked at camera lens prices. Hopefully, we will be able to get one soon. We also glanced at cell phones, international plans and egyptian plans, though little information was had. Well… unless your planning a short, touristy trip. Also, we had a mild panic attack (actually, Kiki had the panic attack. Rachel seemed stoic) regarding our tickets. FYI, (and Kiki, international traveler that she is, is embarrassed she forgot this tidbit) the name on your ticket must be the same as your passport if you are traveling internationally.

Rachel did slack on researching international vaccination requirements, she was too busy reading. She claims that she still has one more day before the end of the week. Two out of three goals is normally respectable. However, vaccinations are a fairly important aspect of our trip, so shame on her (LAME!).

Kiki already blogged about her goals. She failed at her new goal (reading two books). She only finished one, though she has started four others.

New Goals!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Kiki: 1) Read and finish two books 2) Watch a couple of movies

Rachel: 1) Read and finish two books 2 ) Watch at least one movie 3) Research vaccinations 4) Practice photography

Collectively: 1) Study Arabic 2) Not panic 3) Come up with better things to blog about 4) Not spend money (after today because Kiki needs an Arabic book and dictionary)

Categories: Adventure, Books, Goals, Nerd, Photography, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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