Monday, January 26, 2009

school started

I am not watching as much SpongeBob because school started up again. At least I'm not in Mrs. Puff's boating school, or Squidward's art class. Mrs. Puff kind of drives me nuts, but then in the one where she gets sent to jail for a boat crash involving a particularly obnoxious student Sponge, I really feel for her. SpongeBob and Patrick manage to sneak into prison to bust her out, but she doesn't want to go because in jail there is no SpongeBob.

Along with the meta-post from earlier, I believe in this episode towards the end she remembers the boat crash differently- the situation with the police officer fish is different each time and she is not sure at the end what was real.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


There is one where Patrick wants to write a poem, but is tormented by his memory of writing a poem in school once and everyone threw dodgeballs at him. He happened to be in gym class and that was the activity.
In the beginning of the episode, Patrick and SpongeBob are at the comic book store and Patrick needs $100- I think to enter a poetry contest? But he doesn't have it. SpongeBob has a huge stack of comics he is about to buy, and his wallet falls out of his pocket. He asks Patrick to grab it, and Patrick opens it and says, "Hey! I found a hundred dollars!" and SpongeBob says, "That's my comic book money!" and Patrick claims that it is in fact a sign, that fell from the back of SpongeBob's pants. He then tells SpongeBob that he needs to learn to listen to signs like this.
Then Patrick busts into SpongeBob's house and asks to borrow a pencil, paper, and space to work.

Sometimes I hate Patrick. He can be such a jerk! No, he's not a jerk, he just does really mean and inconsiderate things. I don't think he does it on purpose, he's just dumb. I feel like sometimes people do stuff like this. Not this exaggerated of course, but stuff that causes a similar reaction in my brain. Like maybe they just aren't thinking? I've realized though that often they just think differently, and things that bug me are not things that would bug them. Therefore, it doesn't occur to them that I might be ticked off because they did that. Then I wonder what I do that ticks people off. Sometimes people tell me, but I suspect that often we all just let it go. Or we fight and have to agree to disagree, which is fine I guess.

Despite Patrick being inconsiderate and doing flat out jerk things, he remains SpongeBob's best friend. They've had fights and SpongeBob has yelled at him (like in the one where they find a baby scallop and they decide to raise it together, and SpongeBob has to be the mom because Patrick isn't wearing a shirt, and Patrick does nothing to take care of the baby because he has to go to "work" which turns out to be sitting under his rock watching TV) but they are totally BFsF. I wish I was better and the forgive and forget thing, but at the same time I feel like when people do you wrong and they just don't see it your way then you have to change your expectations a little bit. And maybe that works, maybe it doesn't. Maybe this makes me a jerk. If I were SpongeBob, I don't think I could put up with Patrick doing these things over and over, but I might still hang out with him sometimes. Patrick just doesn't change, whether he choses that or just doesn't get it doesn't really matter. I just think it's unhealthy and I would feel disrespected. But then, SpongeBob is much less attached to things (including his ego) than I am. I think this show is pretty Buddhist.

I want to be more like SpongeBob!

Here is Patrick's song he wrote.
Twinkle, Twinkle, Patrick Star,
I made myself a sandwhich.
My mommy named it Fred,
It tastes beans and bacon,
And smelles like it's been dead.
Writing is hard so I used a pointy pencil
Pointy, Pointy, Pointy, Pointy, Pointy, Point.
P.U., what's that horrible smell?
Drum solo!
(Drum Solo)
I have a head,
It ends in a point
Pointy, Pointy, Pointy, Pointy, Pointy, Point.
This song is over,
except for this line,
You win this round,

To see it, go here

Being a spectacle

There's an episode where a fish from a famous rock band loses his tall Victorian-style wig, and SpongeBob finds it and wears it around. Everyone gives him funny looks and they start telling him that he's not cool. SpongeBob thinks they are all saying positive things, and keeps wearing the thing despite the fact that it gets filthy and there are bugs living in it. Sandy convinces SpongeBob to get rid of it, and the next day everyone is wearing wigs because they are cool! SpongeBob realizes he was cool before anyone else and doesn't miss his wig so much.

I took my skis on the bus yesterday to go skiing at the golf course, and got several funny looks. I had them in a ski bag, and one lady on the bus asked me, "what do you have in there?" I told her cross country skis, and she said, "oh, I thought it might be a fishing pole." Then she was concerned that I was going to be cold. Which I was, because it was super windy. But at least it was warm out- I think it was in the 20's!

Little did she (or the other people I saw) know that skis on the bus is the new black.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Leif Eriksson Day

SpongeBob wakes up and has a red beard and viking helmet, and the narrator explains that every day is a holiday for SpongeBob. SpongeBob yells about how it's Leif Eriksson Day, and then talks like the Swedish Chef.
He goes to find someone to play with, but everyone is gone or doesn't want to play so SpongeBob blows a bubble buddy. He then takes the bubble buddy around Bikini Bottom, and all kinds of zany antics ensue. Eventually the other residents of Bikini Bottom want to get rid of bubble buddy (he made many of them wait in line for two hours in the port-a-potty at the beach, among other things) and bubble buddy tells SpongeBob that he thinks he's going to go because things have just gotten weird. He gets in a bubble taxi and takes off, and SpongeBob comments on how they blow up so fast.

SquareRant #5: can you come out and play?
Remember asking your friends if they could come out and play? People don't play enough.
My siblings and I used to play with all of our action figures and dolls at once, along with things like shoes (the Barbies and GI Joes drove shoes) and caboodles (the lego people lived in caboodles and tackle boxes- they had pools with real water!). We had elaborate stories of kidnapping and a Barbie Queen Mombie (from Return to Oz) that would take off her head and put on heads from other things. It was the best when the other things were of a different scale.

Stop copying me

I'm watching the one where Patrick wants to win awards like SpongeBob, so he starts copying every thing SpongeBob does and SpongeBob gets really ticked off about it. Patrick dresses like SpongeBob, acts like him, and copies every thing he does. Finally SpongeBob tries to convince Patrick that it's awesome to be Patrick, but Patrick doesn't believe him. Then the mailman (I mean fish) comes by with a trophy... for Patrick! It's an award for doing nothing. Patrick goes back to being himself to uphold his title.

Man, it is obnoxious when someone copies every thing you do! Which is why I used to love doing it to my siblings.

SquareRant # 4: Infomercials
So right now I'm watching the infomercial for the Slider Station- it is a little burger maker that fits on your stovetop. The guy that does the infomercial does a ton of other infomercials too. My siblings and I used to watch a lot of infomercials, especially late at night during sleepovers. Our favorite was the Miracle Thaw. My current favorites (I watch them with my roommates) are:
-The Snuggie: it's a fleece blanket with arms, so you can keep your pet close at hand. The old white guy in the red Snuggie looks like he's in the klan or something.
-That thing that holds your bra straps together on your back. Who doesn't love bras, and bra accessories?
-Those bump-up things from the Biggie Hair place that you put in your hair to make it big and 60's
-The Sham-Wow super towel that cleans up spilled pop on the counter

Friday, January 16, 2009


Just in case anyone wants more info about SpongeBob episodes, there's a SpongePedia!

Hero Worship

I just saw this one where SpongeBob and Patrick go to the Bikini Bottom Jellyfish Convention, and they see their respective heroes: Kevin, a sea cucumber that heads the Jellyfish Spotters (the premier jellyfishing organization) and Jeffrey the Jellyfish. SpongeBob is super excited about meeting his hero Kevin, and will do anything to join his organization. Patrick tells SpongeBob that hero worship is bad and then chases his hero Jeffrey.

Meanwhile, SpongeBob meets Kevin and convinces him he should join the Jellyfish Spotters on a jellyfishing expedition. Kevin tells SpongeBob that he has to pass a test to join the club, and proceeds to create test after test that SpongeBob passes without even trying. Also, Kevin gets stung by every jellyfish that comes by. He finally tells SpongeBob that he has to catch a queen jellyfish, ties him to some poles and gives him a jellyfish call that says "loser". then they ditch him to jump in a mechanical "queen" jellyfish, and sting SpongeBob. They chase him to the edge of a cliff, and open up the jellyfish- showing SpongeBob that it's Kevin and his cronies. At the bottom of the cliff are a bunch of Kevin's other "biggest fans" that he has chased off the edge of the cliff. They are stuck at the bottom with no way out, but they are still excited that Kevin has come back to see them.

The "queen jellyfish" has attracted a king jellyfish, who goes after everybody and chases them into a hole in a rock, where Kevin admits he doesn't know what to do and that he's only in the Spotters for the fashion. SpongeBob goes out and blows a bubble that looks like pie ("who doesn't like pie?"), and the king jellyfish leaves happy.

The cronies want SpongeBob to be their leader in the club, but SpongeBob turns them down because "it's about the jellyfishing". Patrick tells him that he made the right choice, and that hero worship is unhealthy. As he says this, he is dragging Jeffrey the Jellyfish (who he has tied up and put in a wagon) home with him.

I liked that ultimately SpongeBob realized that it was about jellyfishing and not about being in an exclusive club. I particularly loved how Kevin was in it for the fashion and was a total jerk to everyone- both "uncool" fish who weren't in the club but also the "cool fish" that were in the club. Even the fish he chased off a cliff and left there- one of which looked like it had broken fins- still loved him. Even Patrick knows that hero worship is unhealthy. I think this is especially true when your hero is a total jerk.

My heroes, Aneeqa and Ann Bancroft, are not total jerks. But I wouldn't jump off of buildings for them, and I doubt they would ask me to.

To make a long story even longer, I have what my advisor politely calls "diverse interests" so I get myself into all kinds of activities and groups of people. I never feel like I am really solidly in those groups, which sometimes causes me to feel out of place. One example is the bike community. My roommates and some of my friends are totally into bikes. I like to ride my bike, I know how to fix some things on my bike, and I wear short pants. But sometimes I get the impression that it's more about the kind of bike you ride, the accessories you have, or races you do. Whatever, I just like the bike.

Another example is school. I like to think I am not "one of them" because I think the academics are often unrealistic and tiresome. Of course, not my friends. Most of the time :)

That said, I have often thought that it is easier to classify people you don't know- you can fit them in a nice neat little box. But once you know them, it's much harder because most people have something you won't expect. Then they spill out of the box and you don't know what to do with them. Of course, I prefer people that don't fit in boxes, and my friends generally tend to be people that don't even give the impression of fitting into a box.

Also, the best part about feeling like you don't fit in somewhere is that you can often find other people that feel the same way, and then you get to learn all kinds of new things about those people. I didn't feel like I fit in when I worked at the Girl Scouts because it was mostly older ladies from the suburbs, but I definitely connected with several of them for completely different reasons. When you are around people you don't "fit in with", you have to find something other than the most obvious thing (in this case my job) to connect you.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

This day in history

I just learned that on January 13, 2005, the SpongeBob SquarePants movie was released in movie theaters in Peru.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Krabby Patties and winter biking

I'm watching the one where Squidward talks a lot of stuff about how bad Krabby Patties are, and then SpongeBob makes him try one and he discovers that he loves them. Like he's addicted to them. But he acts like he still hates them, and then he has a problem. He dreams about marrying a krabby patty and having a weird krabby patty squid child.

SpongeBob apologizes, and talks about how he was only trying to make Squidward happy but he recognizes that not eveyone likes the same thing, and though he disagrees with Squid's choice but isn't going to make him like something he just doesn't like.

Squidward sneaks into the Patty Vault to get a krabby patty, and when SpongeBob catches him he is forced to admit that he likes krabby patties.

So I also just read a post on Jeff's blog that was a link to Joe Soucheray's article Not cold nor sludge can stop the morons where he just hates on winter cyclists. He claims that "in the winter, a cyclist is a menace to himself and the motorist" and goes on to say that "It must be a combination of extreme poverty, misplaced virtue, environmental theology, stubbornness and a contrarian nature that compels the winter bicyclist to navigate the rutted shoulder, or worse, just take up a lane and slow down the cars."

Masculine language aside, this is just straight up hating on cyclists and little else. How do you respond to that? I can yell as loud as I like that I pay taxes and have every right to use the roads, or that snow in the bike lane means that we bike in another lane, or that I think it's asinine that we worship the car in this country and don't seem to value any other method of transportation. We could even get philosophical and talk about how it's dumb that people are always in a hurry and we should live slower, and have more peace of mind.

It's easy to just say that I can't talk to people who think like this guy, and just stay in my camp and yell louder.
Bike laws and roads are not like Krabby Patties. I can't just say that people like different things and we have to accept that and move on. Because I have to share the road with Those People, and they have to share it with me and My People.

I think that I am finally starting to understand what policy is, and why it is important. It's about time! If I had my way, we would have more roads only for cycling or walking, and better public transportation so people don't have to drive everywhere. I get the feeling that if this guy had his way, cyclists would have fewer rights than the required three feet that every motorist graciously provides us on the road.

SquareRant #3: Krabby Patties and corporate agriculture
Of course, one of the reasons that Squidward claims that he doesn't like krabby patties is that they are made of crap. Perhaps they are similar to burgers made from unsustainable corporate farmed beef. SpongeBob acknowledges they are not good for the body, but claims that they are good for the soul.
What's more important than the soul of a consumer?

Square Rant #2: My my metrocard

I haven't been blogging because I went to DC for a science and technology policy forum. It was pretty good; it was interesting to hear from some folks in Washington (DC, not to be confused with Washington state) about their careers in science policy and about how they got there. And, we were at the National Academies of Science, which is across the street from where the Obama transition team is working!

So I took the Metro to and from the airport, and when I was heading back to the airport, I got a metrocard with Obama's face on it! It says something like "celebrating inauguration" and I was super excited and thought, I will treasure this forever. Even though I wasn't in DC for inauguration, I was close! So I go to put it in the slot to get out of the Metro at the airport, and apparently I had exact fare so the thing ate it! I was pissed. So I thought, well I'll just buy another one. So I put money in the fare box thing, and out comes a metrocard with a stupid panda. I looked at it and made a pouty face. The attendant came over and asked if there was something wrong. I explained that I had wanted Obama and I got the stupid panda, and then I gave him my card, telling him that I didn't need it and I was leaving to go home. He said, well wait. And he went into his little box, and got a card with Obama on it for me.

It was so awesome.

Not that I hate pandas or anything, because I don't, but I was super stoked on the Obama metrocard.

It kind of reminded me of the epispode where Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy trading cards come out, and SpongeBob buys every packet but one from the store trying to get the valuable talking card. Then Patrick buys the last pack of cards, and gets the card! He tells SpongeBob he can have the card at the end of the day. So SpongeBob follows Patrick around as he uses the card for anything that could possibly ruin or destroy it- he cleans with it, eats off of it, uses it to start fires, the usual.

When I watch this episode, I think about the Buddhist idea of non-attachment. SpongeBob goes nuts as Patrick destroys the card because he is attached to the card and its value. I feel that way about lots of my stuff. But when you worry constantly about the possibility of losing or wrecking something, you are imprisoned! Then you don't enjoy the thing. It is better just to let it go and enjoy what you can from it. The glass is already broken!

Although with the Obama metrocard, I got it back. Really the important thing is the story- this pointless story. But it got us to Buddhism by way of SpongeBob! That's how you know it's worthwhile.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy

In this one, Mermaid Man runs off leaving his belt behind and SpongeBob grabs it. He decides to hang onto it (it has prevented the fall of nations, and pants!) and he starts shrinking all kinds of things.

I love Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy! They are maybe some of the most ridiculous heroes, but in SpongeBob they are like comic book or tv superheroes but they are also real people (and they are aging! Mermaid Man is totally an old guy that doesn't remember where he left things or who the bad guys are) that eat at the Krusty Krab and get annoyed by "that Sponge kid". Their villains are equally as ridiculous, like Man Ray and the Dirty Bubble. The thing I don't understand is that "Barnacles" is sort of profanity in SpongeBob SquarePants, so how is a sidekick named that?

If I could make superheroes and supervillains, I think they would be kind of like these guys. They are their characters in real life- no secret identities. They have some neat gadgets and big adventures but are also just kind of everyday people that have everyday adventures.

Actually, I love the idea of everyday adventures. I'm kind of a busy gal, but I still like to have adventures so they seem to fit well into my schedule. I should have them more often. But then, I'd have to leave the living room. And SpongeBob.

When Kevin suggested the name for this blog (which, by the way, the address was taken by some girl named Sara who has never posted a single entry on her SpongeBlog) he also suggested that I could go off on "SquareRants" so here goes:

SquareRant #1: My latest everyday adventure (these are previously known to my campers when I was a counselor as "pointless stories". I have recently decided to bring them back, and this seems to be the perfect venue.)

Season and I got dolled up for New Year's and went to Mancini's for Suits and Sequins. Kurt, Rachel and Wyatt came with us, and we met up with more people there. Kurt and I were carpooling and arrived before the rest of our crew, and when we went up to the bar this really drunk older lady told me, "you look ad-or-a-ble!!" and I said thank you. Then I told her I liked her boot- she was drinking out of a glass shaped like a boot that lit up! She said, "what about her boots?!" and she turns to her friend, who is crammed in at the bar like a sardine, and she says, "show her your boots!". So the friend, also an older, drunk lady tries to wiggle around enough to get her leg up so that I can see her boots. they are knee-high white boots, and I say something like, "oh yeah! Those are nice! Can you walk in them? I couldn't because I can't walk in heels." The lady is all about this conversation, and says "oh yeah, these are great boots." Meanwhile the other lady is now asking me, "well what about my boot?" and showing me the boot she's drinking out of. At this point, Kurt gets me a drink and we try to get away from the bar while they shout, "happy new year!" I try to tell them it's still two hours away, but they argue that the like to be early for things. Okay, ladies.

Meta, or just abstraction?

I just watched the one where SpongeBob is on vacation. He doesn't really know that vacation means you don't go to work until Krabs won't let him in the Krusty Krab. So he goes home and plays with his Krusty Krab Playset, where action-figure Krabs kicks action-figure SpongeBob out again so action-figure SpongeBob gets out his own Krusty Krab Playset and plays Krusty Krab. It's SpongeBob holding action-figure SpongeBob holding another, smaller SpongeBob.

I often wish that I loved my job as much as SpongeBob loves his. He's always so excited to be there, and in this episode he is horrified when he has to come up with other stuff to do all day.
Though I'm glad that I'm not that obsessed with work, I do wish I didn't love lazing around so much. My motivation reservoir is easily depleted and not so readily filled. Good thing SpongeBob is almost always on!

My other favorite meta-episode is the one where the artist is in the boat (the artist at sea, he's clearly French with his beret) and drops his pencil into the water. It falls into Bikini Bottom and SpongeBob and Patrick start drawing with it and whatever they draw comes to life. SpongeBob makes a crude drawing of himself and calls it DoddleBob. It turns evil, gets a hold of the pencil and wreaks a lot of havoc by drawing and erasing things. They get rid of him by erasing him, and then I think SpongeBob and Patrick fight and erase each parts of other.

I have also often wished that I could be a cartoon, and that it would be a self-aware cartoon like in the Simpsons where they talk about Fox or they say they have five things and count on their fingers, of which they only have four. Family Guy does it all the time too. And then I would have a bunch of random cartoon buddies, and we would go on adventures and find ourselves in many pickles that we would have to draw our way out of. The possibilities are endless!

I love when cartoons, or even real-people shows, make references to their writers or animators. It's a complicated philosophical situation that mirrors the human condition! But in this case, it's simplified as we the viewer clearly know who The Creator is. Another great example is the book Sophie's World. I don't want to ruin it but basically the characters are in the process of studying the history of philosophy and they begin interacting with the creator of their story, and then they try to take control of the plot of their story but they have to be sneaky so that the author doesn't know they are doing it and still thinks he is doing it. So good!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Jeff thinks

that the address of the blog (Thug Tug) sounds like a hand job you would get in prison (he says, "what else could it be?"). It's actually the name of the bar where SpongeBob and Patrick get the spatula to the Patty Wagon (their Krabby Patty car) back from the fish who stole it. It is a shipwrecked tug boat full of thugs. Jeeze.
Read more about what Jeff thinks here: Bike Jerks

Armor Abs Krabs

Today I watched the one where Mr. Krabs molts because he got too fat for his old navy uniform. He looks like a creepy, fleshy, pink blob. He is upset that he isn't manly enough to hang out with his navy buddies at the reunion, so SpongeBob gets inside Mr. Krabs' shell, pops his eyes out through the eye holes and crinkles his nose. Then he does his impression of Krabs that he and Squidward have been working on for years, and goes to the reunion pretending to be Krabs. But once SpongeBob starts talking about jellyfishing and bubbleblowing in his acceptance speech for winning the "manliest" award, the navy buddies are on to him. Krabs admits that he is a fleshy nasty pink blob, and the navy buddies think that is the manliest thing to admit and start sharing things they had been hiding.

It was a creepy episode because Mr. Krabs just looks gross.