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Clever Manka, · Categories: Manka's Posts · Tags: ,

I struggled for weeks to write something about Living My Best Fucking Life but things are rough, really rough right now and I just couldn’t do it. The Burgomaster suggested I just write about something I liked, something that made me happy. A memory of when I didn’t think about living my best life because I was already living it. This is what came out.

I attended my first concert in 1984. My mother took me and three friends to Kansas City to see Huey Lewis and the News. I would have rather made the four-hour trip to see Duran Duran, but Mommy actually liked Huey Lewis, so Huey Lewis it was. It was fine. Other than being a first-time arena concert experience it was not particularly notable. The second most memorable moment of the evening was when April (a pocket-sized girl whose body could not keep up with her heart’s desire to be at the front of the crushing crowd) was lifted over the barricade by security when she started to faint. The most memorable moment was returning to the car afterward and finding all our purses had been stolen out of it. I have little memory of the concert itself. Read full post

Boiled eggs

Clever Manka, · Categories: Manka's Posts · Tags: ,

Look at my beautiful children

There are probably a thousand methods for boiled eggs and I feel like I tried them all before landing on a method that worked for me. So many green yolks and rubbery whites, y’all. So, so many. I get smooth, soft eggs from cooking them this way, even when they’re fresh (24-hours from the local chicken farm fresh) which are supposedly the most difficult to peel. Read full post

The Goal Post

Clever Manka, · Categories: Manka's Posts · Tags: , ,

Bet you didn’t think you’d see a sports metaphor on this site, did you? Neither did I.

I’ve never been a person who much liked (or comprehended) goals, and most of the goals I have entertained have been food/weight related. Not always optimal or encouraging for positive growth, and I acknowledge the absurdity of never setting anything other than body-related goals. I don’t think I’m alone, but I also think most people are more familiar with goal-setting (whether that familiarity is healthy or not is another matter). I can’t even tell you why I never set goals. I simply continuously failed to do so. Instead, various options fell in front of me, and I chose whether to pursue the new path or not (or had the choice made for me). Read full post

Now it’s personal

Clever Manka, · Categories: Manka's Posts · Tags: ,

Here’s the resolution to my dilemma about not-specifically-thematic personal posts here as opposed to just essays. Read full post

Ninety minutes at the DMV

Clever Manka, · Categories: Manka's Posts · Tags:

This is just a stock photo, not the line at the DMV. The DMV had chairs.

When I walked in the door of the DMV at 9:00am, I knew I’d made a bad decision. I’d been awake since 5:30, plenty of time to make it when they opened at 7:00. But I’d waited, just puttering around the house because I had other errands at a store that didn’t open until 10am. The line was long. Very long.

I asked someone in line where was the “take a number” hook/machine. They said there wasn’t one. Just the end of a line of black plastic chairs that snaked around the outside edge of the room. When someone finished at the counter, the DMV called for the next person, and everyone stood up and moved down one chair. There was a man with a walker two people ahead of me. His wife had to help him up out of his current seat and into the next one nineteen times. Read full post

Being a Weirdo on the Internet

Clever Manka, · Categories: Manka's Posts · Tags: , ,

This is pretty much what powered my campus internet connection in 1989. As far as I know, this could actually be my university’s VAX 9000. Even the vented floor is the same.

I got my first email account in 1989, working as a student employee for my university’s IT department. It gave me my first experience on the internet via access to Usenet News—a beautiful, terrifying, engaging world that was literally at my fingertips 24 hours a day. It was love at first sight, and I was hardly alone among my co-workers in my affection for it.

Our supervisors taped notes to the student staff monitors: “No NEWS until Checklist is done!” meaning we had to complete all items on the shift-change list before reading what had popped up on our groups. A wily move on their part, making NEWS access contingent on finishing a task instead of just disallowing it. I wonder if they simply didn’t want to fight that battle or if they understood the importance of access to a crew of mostly (let’s face it) socially awkward nerds. Read full post

The Next Generation

Clever Manka, · Categories: Manka's Posts · Tags: ,

This article has nothing to do with the website theme, but the spirit called me to write it. It’s my website. I can do what I want.

Friday afternoon I answered the doorbell to three pre-teen girls who were “looking to do some good deeds” and could they achieve that by mowing my lawn for “five or ten dollars.” Read full post