Wednesday, January 24, 2007
LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

We found it! Polly Hall, Lilly Tree, and I have landed this phat pad at 493 Amsterdam Avenue in New York City.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

$775 bedroom in 4-bd share, UWS/Columbia (108th/broadway)

2nd floor walk-up, big fat newly renov. kitchen, bathroom, living room
heat & hot water included; we split cable, wireless internet
quiet building short walk to subway (1/B/C) and central park
dozens of excellent bars, cafes, and restaurants
amazing bagels & burritos 1/2 block away
join 3 lovely clean mid-twenties ladies (two columbia grad students)
check out pics, floorplan and more on our house blog

room A has tall window, fits queen & dresser or full & desk. it's cozy, but the common space, company, neighborhood, and price are hard to beat. i love it here, i'm only subltetting to move in with my amazing girlfriend. first, last, and remainder of broker's fee.

available january (flexible start date)
contact andrew with questions

Monday, September 18, 2006

The Ojai Fire: A Letter from the Front

Hi Everyone,

You have probably read that we are in the midst of a major forest fire. It's actually been quite a dramatic 2 days and, although we have our car filled with our family photo albums parked in the driveway ready to go, it seems at this point that the fire will actually NOT come through Thacher. We evacuated all the kids last night, mainly to get them out of the smoke and out of the way of the fire-fighting operation. The firefighters are using Thacher today as a major staging ground to try to get control of this side of the front--they plan to use our playing fields as landing areas for helicopters, and our water (pool and hydrants) to supply their tankers. They said last night they will be bringing up crews and trucks from Long Beach and Orange County to manage this front.

Here's a recap. Even though this fire has been raging in our backyard for two weeks, most of us had not paid much attention to it. The media coverage was mainly about the eastern front (45 minute drive away), and worry about the fire jumping Route 5 and getting into the Angeles National Forest. So, it was a surprise to everyone here to have the southern and western fronts [which is where we are] suddenly become the focus of attention this weekend.

For us, we awoke on Saturday morning to blue skies and an expectation of a wonderfully lazy Saturday, time to recover from our first full week of classes. We attended our first home football game on Saturday afternoon and, as we walked up from the field after the game, noticed that the smoke was pretty bad behind the hills. Kurt and I went out to dinner at the Ranch House, an outdoor restaurant in Ojai, and we were certainly aware of the ash raining down on our table as we ate. Driving home was a bit like driving through the beginning of a snowstorm--light ash in our headlights. By the time everyone went to bed, the whole school smelled like heavy smoke and it was a bit uncomfortable to breathe. I had a student wake me up at 11:30 because he felt nauseous; I decided later that this was probably a reaction to the smoke. Then at 2am, we were awakened by a phone call asking that all Dorm Heads go to the Headmaster's house to discuss evacuation. Since I am in charge of 34 sophomore boys, I went.

The school had been notified by police at 1am that the school might be requested to evacuate within the next 4-6 hours. So, after an hour's meeting of strategy (which included figuring out what to do with 130 horses!), we all went back to our homes, I called the faculty on my team to alert them, and all the adults spent an hour or so packing up their own valuables and getting organized to evacuate should the alarm sound. The horse faculty began the wholesale catching and hauling of horses, who were arranged by gender in our two large arenas (at 5 am they had to wake up the owner of the local feedstore to get him to sell us some big water troughs). When the night passed with no actual alarm, we woke up the students at 7:00 and met with the whole school to give them the game plan which was, basically, pack up your stuff to evacuate, and then wait... inside. It turned out to be a long day.

All day yesterday was dark and foreboding. Even though the weather was in the 90's elsewhere, we stayed relatively cool because of the smoke cover. Ash rained down continuously, and the sun was only visible as a faint red orb. It felt like we were living inside an ashtray. Families were, of course, calling all day with concern. By afternoon, the school was having almost continuous fly-bys of planes with retardant (see the amazing picture from the LA Times, above, which was taken from the Thacher gymkhana field)

By afternoon, we sensed that the fire was moving parallel to us, rather than at us, but we were also aware that the living conditions at Thacher were very poor because of the air quality. We had another series of meetings with administrators and then with the full school, and then each Dorm Head sat down with his or her group at 5pm and asked if any of their families would be willing to take in groups of students for a few days. It was quite amazing. In our Dorm, I had all 34 of my boys placed in homes within an hour, and parents from Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Pasadena and Los Angeles began driving towards us to pick up the kids. We loaded the northern- bound groups on a bus and took them to a drop-off point in SB... and everyone else magically disappeared by 8pm. Kurt and I looked at each other in relief, locked up the dorm doors, closed up the windows in our house, turned on the air conditioner, and fell into bed.

This morning, ten hours later, we awoke to a completely silent campus; and, we certainly are feeling very much more refreshed. The sky is still smoky, but it does not seem as thick. We have fire trucks around... there is a possibility that they will light a "backfire" behind us this afternoon, a move that will certainly make our situation safer. The forecast is for milder temperatures and an onshore breeze (which would be a favorable windshift), which would mean we would probably have the kids back with us by Tuesday night. So, we think we'll get out of here this afternoon for a little unexpected vacation... go to Ventura to dinner an the movies, perhaps.

With the fire only 15% contained, they are predicting it may take another 2 weeks to get it out completely. The fireman reminded us yesterday at our meeting that they don't make any active efforts to put it out as it burns in the Los Padres National Forest--the terrain is too rugged and dangerous. They only make their stand when the fire threatens developments, which it did over the weekend (us!) However, I am guessing the crisis in our neck of the woods is passing and we should be back to normal in a couple of days. I'll keep you posted.

Lots of love.
Alice and Kurt

Monday, September 11, 2006

A good day to reflect.


Thursday, August 31, 2006

Sunny Days, ineed.

Out of the blue, I landed a job that couldn't be more perfect at this stage of my life. I am a part-time sound editor for...that's right: Sesame Workshop. It's pretty cut-and-dry work so far, but it's pretty amazing to get a behind-the-scenes look at (or rather, listen to) the actors who bring Elmo, Oscar, and the rest of them to life. Currently I'm just editing and filing soundbites for interactive games on their website, which involves taking a script and a data CD of a few recording sessions and boiling them down to the lines the animated characters will end up saying. I might get to do a little more music with the ringtones and podcasts later on. Who knows!

Phoebe not only came to visit me on her way back to Skidmore for her senior year, but she ALSO leant me her DIGITAL CAMERA, with which we took these pictures of us eating some yummy cous-cous we'd just cooked. This is also pretty sweet because now I can give you all a tour of my new apartment:

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

New Digs:
246 W 108th Street, New York, NY 10025

Check out this nifty sketch of the floorplan my new roomies did: