Oh but I did get to do another pumping station thingie on Tuesday, and the guy from the MUA (that stands for Municipal Utilities Authoritai, FYI) who came out with me to open the fence and the doors and whatnot, he was very nice. And he gave me, GAVE me a pair of Wolverine winter workgloves, warm and furry on the inside and soft leather on the outside. That's hot.
So yeah, that Elvis thing? I . . . sorta totally made that up. My bad. I didn't think anybody would buy it! I was all ready to make a poll the next day, "at what point did you realize I was full of shit" or something. But I'm glad you all liked it. I didn't even go to the Tower Theater, I stayed home and went to bed instead. I had thought about it (I suppose that's obvious), but I didn't go. 'Course, after writing that shit, now I regret not having gone. I mean, he might have remembered me, right? And I had a gimmick this time, I won't have a gimmick again. Ah well. Not that it really would matter anyway.
I did go grocery shopping and spend $189, though, that part was true.
So the exam, the exam on Saturday. It's the FE exam, Fundamentals of Engineering. It used to be called the EIT exam, which stands for Engineer In Training, and that's how most people still refer to it. It's an all-day exam, four hours in the morning, four hours in the afternoon. It covers ALL engineering subjects. Which is a bitch, cuz, you know, fucking circuits. I can't stands 'em, and there were a whole buttload (ha, I'm twenty-four years old and I just said "buttload") of questions on circuits. Man, circuits.
Man I'm getting the wickedest sense of deja vu, of writing this entry. Bizarre.
Anyway, so yeah. If you want to get licensed as a Professional Engineer -- and you must be a P.E. in order to sign plans and such -- you must take and pass the P.E. exam (which actually stands for Principles of Engineering). But you can't take the P.E. exam unless you have had four years of design experience working under a P.E., AND you have taken and passed the EIT.
You're supposed to take the EIT while you're still in school, April of your senior year. EVERYBODY tells you to. EVERYBODY. EVERYBODY, EVERYBODY. And everyone acts like they're passing on sage wisdom, like this may not have occurred to you otherwise. "Wow, you mean I should take this exam, which covers pretty much everything I've studied in college, while I'm still in college? While the information is ostensibly still fresh in my mind? What an amazing idea!"
And yet? I mean every professor said we should take it, but no fucking one in the Civil department at Rutgers ever said "hey kids, the application to take the EIT is due ___!" No one. Fuckers. Sure, it's our responsibility, but dude -- in various flavors of engineering the importance of the P.E. varies, but in Civil, almost everyone should get one eventually, the nature of the work pretty much requires it. And we are KIDS, stupid COLLEGE KIDS, and it would have been nice to get a HEADS UP, knamean? Instead, one Monday in . . . I dunno, some class, I actually remember it was in SERC Room 209, but I don't remember the class -- one of the kids was like "dude, the EIT application is due Friday." Friday! Five days! We had to have the thing TYPED and NOTARIZED. Notarized, dude. Notarized. AND I think it was in the midst of midterms or something. Needless to say, I didn't get it done in time. Michelle did! I was the one who told her about it, and got her an application, and she has her shit WAY more together than I, and she signed up for that shit, and took a review class which met twice a week for a whole semester, and by God, she passed it in April, the first time she took it. Oh I think you had to send in a current photograph of yourself, too, less than 6 months old. The photograph, I mean.
So . . . yes, this explanation is getting way too long and boring, so I'll speed it up. The test is held only in October and April, and the applications are due six months before. So I missed the October 1999 deadline for the April 2000 test. Then I missed the April deadline, even though I knew about it six months in advance this time. Shameful. (Man, but who has a freaking typewriter? That was the hardest part.) THEN I had an October deadline, and I missed THAT, too, I think I forgot until like two days before. THAT actually contributed to my first panic/anxiety/whathaveyou attack (it was one of several factors) which I had in my new living room, in front of my dad. I saw it as a symbol of Failure, that I was Failing at Life. Which of course is stupid.
So then my PARENTS were on my back about this application, because they knew how freaked-out it made me. Great. But I made the next April deadline! Hooray! I was so happy. And then that summer I was unemployed, so I actually studied some! My pace wasn't really fast enough, but I was studying! Two weeks before exam in October, I dug out my application to see some information about the location -- and pulled out an application that I hadn't sent in. See, you send one application, and they send you shit back, and then you're supposed to fill THAT out and send it in with your fee. I had forgotten to do that. Which means that I was not, in fact, signed up to take the exam, and it was too late to do so. I even called to make sure. Ridiculous.
I stopped studying.
But it was easy to sign up for the April test, because I had already done the first part, I didn't have to do that crap again. But then I didn't study. And I figured there was no way I could pass the test without studying. So even though I was signed up, I didn't go.
This brings us to this October. I still didn't really study for the thing. I said I was going to, and I stopped making fun plans during the week, but . . . man, studying is boring and I've never been good at it. I'm better at being lectured to. But I went! I went, and I took it, and it wasn't too bad, though I don't think I passed. But that's okay, I'll know for next time.
Though I have a sneaking suspicion that I have to start from the original application again, for next time. Man.
It was held at Rowan University, and their brand-new drop-dead gorgeous ballroom. Everyone got their own comfy seat, and their own little table, so that they could spread out. Sign-in was at 7:30am, the exam ended at 5:30pm.
That's ten hours, folks. On a Saturday. That's a long time.
Security was tight, and when I say tight, I mean tight. If you want to go the bathroom, a girl comes over and holds your testing materials in her arms, and gives you a pass. You go to the back of the room and give your exit pass to the dude at the door. Then you go to the bathroom, and another girl followed me in there. Amazing.
They have really really nice bathrooms, too; they have WALLS. The stalls have walls, that go up to the ceiling, and a practically-real wooden door on each one. They are short, so you can peek underneath, but besides that they're real doors. Weird.
And they give you a mechanical pencil, which was nice. So that there are no pencil complaints. In the test, I mean, they don't give you a pencil to go to the bathroom, that wouldn't make any sense.
After the exam, I drove home and made dinner, for illscientist and basillica and Mambo. I wanted to drink at the Halloween party, which meant I wanted to have a real dinner in my belly. And I hadn't cooked in weeks. I made Shake-n-Bake chicken, and stuffing and steamed vegetables. They were a little late in arriving, so I had time to make rice krispie treats for the party, as well as assemble ninety or so pigs-n-blankets.
We ate dinner, and then got dressed, and then headed over to the hizouse for the pizznartay.
I was sorry that we were late, because I missed Mitch's costume. He was the Flaming Carrot. Man, the place was jumpin' by the time we got there. About half or a little less than half of the people there knew who I was supposed to be, but those who did thought it was great, so hooray! I was Steve Martin. I had a banjo. And a white suit, and a wig, and an arrowthroughthehead. Man, having a banjo is hot. I was "playing" it almost the entire time I was wearing it, unless I was drinking and smoking at the time. I bought finger picks. I lost them all, but I had figured ahead of time that I would, so it was no big deal. And besides, I hadn't even PAID for them, because the inventory system was screwy at Sam Ash and the guy at the guitar department liked me, so he let me just take them, rather than go through the hassle of figuring it all out.
Oh and also? I had downloaded a bunch of Steve Martin bits a few days before for reference, and man, that guy. He is so funny. I remember why I used to be in love with him.
The party was great! Everybody looked great! The house looked great! Brian was Opitmus Prime, as you may have heard. He ran back and forth in the back yard a bit for us, it was hilarious. Hal was the Jolly Green Giant, and Kelly was Scarlett from GI Joe, they were two of my favorites. And Vince built a trebuchet. And Culann and Carolyn were Ketchup and Mustard and Carolyn said in the kitchen "why does everyone want to talk to ketchup?? Ketchup, ketchup, ketchup! Why doesn't anyone want to talk to mustard, what's wrong with MUSTARD?" Man, I sure do love me some Culann AND some Carolyn, I'll tell you what. And Neil was Dave Thomas and he looked really good, his costume was very . . . I dunno, clean or something, it was put together real well. I think maybe . . . maybe because his hair was gray, but not from a wig, you know? And Jay Stewart kept trying to get me to kiss the skull on the top of his scepter, but the eyeholes were big and creeped me out and I refused. And Michelle and Dave made out. And Kelly made Jell-O shots with gummi worms in them, and they were GOOD and also STRONG. And I met Norm finally, as well as tawdryjones. And swolfe. And Quba and Artie were there, they're both so tall. And Tami and Manning looked really, really good. Manning had all these awesome details, and his coffin fucking made the thing, and Tami . . . I can't even put my finger on what it was about Tami that made her look so great, but man, she was pretty fucking scary. And drunk as hell by the time I got there, so Interstate High Five for that. And Tami's friend Ayelet liked my pigs-n-blankets. And there was one guy there with a mask on, who walked around and didn't talk and we didn't know who he was and he creeped us out.
I am very glad that Dave and Mambo and Nadine came. I like that Dave got to see The House and meet everybody, because now he has better context for when I tell long boring stories. And it's neat that . . . well of course you know how it is, when you introduce two of your friends, from different spheres. You're always a little nervous, but if you think they'll like each other, then you're excited too. But Dave and Tami-and-Manning have known each other from LiveJournal for some time now, so it's weird that they . . . they know each other outside of me already, even though they hadn't yet met in person. You dig? Neat. And everybody got to meet Mambo, who hadn't already. And he acted WEIRD, but he's Mambo, whaddaya gonna do, he gets weird when he's drunk. And Nadine broke the back door window, but she claims it was an accident, so I guess I believe her. She looked great, really hot, I love her hair, and she told an interesting story to Kelly for the videotape. I was happy to have been somewhat responsible for bringing a hot chick that nobody knew to the party.
I wish I had done the party a little different, actually. I wish I hadn't smoked before I came, maybe, because smoking makes me paranoid, and I was too scared to get caught up in conversation, because I didn't want to get stuck anywhere, and as a result I spoke to hardly ANYONE for longer than ten seconds. Which is a shame; I missed a lot of costumes, I think. Like, there was this one guy there in a suit, with pale hair, and I wondered, but I didn't know who he was; turned out he was Guy Whatshisface from Memento, and he apparently had Polaroids in his pockets and everything. That's hot! That's the kind of detail I love! Man, I wish I had seen that, but I was too busy trying to be cool. And play the banjo. Oh and play matchmaker, I ran around for a couple of hours trying to hook two of my very good friends up, but I guess it just wasn't meant to be. Or the guy is too damn shy for his own good. Or maybe the party just wasn't the right place for it. Ah well.
Oh but the deviled egg man, that guy rocked. Also he kept exclaiming about how I was Steve Martin, and how everyone at the party was too young to get it, no one would know who I was. VHS, man, VHS. Seriously. Geez.
Oh also I brought balloons with which to make misshapen balloon animals, but they were UNPOSSIBLE to inflate (Jeff did one, but it popped, and Quba did one, and I made a hat for Gina with it). I should have bought a pump, cuz man, making fake balloon animals when you don't know how to make balloon animals is some hot, noisy physical comedy right there, and that is my steez. Noisy physical comedy. Man. Ha, you should have sex with me, it's hilarious.
Michelle was Olive Oyl and she made her costume again and I LOVE that. She's so creative. And Nicole came as The Scientist and man, Nicole, props for that. Though I must take issue with what she said the next morning, which was something to the effect of "we should hang out sometime and maybe you won't get sick," or something, and she wasn't being too bitchy about it or anything (we don't know each other that well), but man, Nicole? How about the night previous I drank a LOT and didn't get sick, okay? Don't make it seem like I trew up the LAST time I saw you and got drunk, because I didn't, I played the freaking BANJO the last time I saw you and got drunk, which was mere hours ago.
There were a lot of people there (though the next morning, Kelly et al said they were expecting more,) and then everyone sort of left at once, around three or four or so, and the core group stayed up for another hour, dancing. I ended up staying up until four or so, four the NEW time so almost five? Which meant I had been up for TWENTY THREE HOURS straight! Examing and cooking and partying! W00t!
Oh, and just like a free lunch, there's no such thing as a cheap banjo. Seriously. FYI.
Oh and now that I can tell you that I have a banjo, I can tell you that Dave strung it for me, and played (among other things) a line or two from "Where Is My Mind" on it, and man, if that isn't hot, I don't know what is.
Oh, and I just noticed that I say "oh" a lot. "Oh" is the "man" of Autumn 2002.
Hmm. I think that's it? I'm going on vaction this weekend. I'm very excited.
UPDATE: Photos from the party courtesy Manning and Tami and the deviled egg! Hooray! Oh man, I totally bought a new webcam that detaches for use as digital camera EXPRESSLY for the purpose of bringing to this party, but then when I got to the house I put my bag upstairs on Mitch's bed and the camera fell out and onto the floor and I didn't notice and I couldn't find it and I didn't get to use it at all. Poop. I took a coupla real pictures, though, I'll probably get those back in like a month.