Friday, August 26, 2011

Flying Cats and Fines

I have been on a leave of absence from the U. Yesterday I had an advising meeting to see if I could come back this semester.

Knowing it would be a bear to find parking near the school, and being that my leg is still weak, Mom dropped me off at campus. I had about an hour to the appointment so I dropped off some [late] books to the library.

Then I went to wait the rest of the time at this inner courtyard of the building next to the SoA.

Out of the building doors came 5 Japanese students- 4 ladies and a guy. They had a box with them. In the box was some kind of game called “Cat-a-pult.” I’ve been trying to find this game online somewhere to find out what it is and maybe consider why Japanese students would be given it as an assignment, because this wasn’t the first time I have seen a group of Japanese students come out of that building with a Cat-a-pult box.

Anyways, I found a lot of links about catapults, that monster arm-like assistant to castle-storming and other age old fun pastimes. This is the only link I found to the specific game I am talking about; it’s a NY Times patent review of the game written in 2003, mentioning how difficult it is to describe this game.

Well, allow me to try.

From what I could tell, there are five catapult-like launching apparatuses. Instead of a bowl in which to place the ammunition, there is a… pedestal onto which fits a rubber cat figure. The front side of the catapult has a platform.

Nevermind, I found a video! Isn’t YouTube fantastic?

“Yay…” “Incredible!” “Slooooww motion.”

Laugh out loud!

Well, one of the Japanese girls caught me watching them try to figure out the game. She alerted the rest of the group to the surveillance and they waved at me! Please don’t tell my ninja group, they might disown me. All of a sudden I felt like a creeper amateur spy trying to use a book to hide the observing.

I waved back. I think they gestured an invite but I declined. It was enough to watch the cats flying through the air.


I went to the advising appointment. It went well I think. I am a week behind everyone and still have to find a course that I can jump into and have it go towards the thesis. Easy piece, right? Sigh.

The SoA has a great Graduate Advisor at the moment. I mentioned having to pay off a library fine before I will be allowed to register and she had good info about how the fine should be reduced since I’ve returned the books.

So after the advising, I went to take care of that fine at the library. The lady at the office was very helpful and friendly through the matter as I had her check that the returned books were logged in, asked questions about how this might affect the fines, and apologized for all the hassle of helping me with my problem. The fine was reduced greatly and I had enough on hand to pay for the remaining total- thank God! It was a great load off of my nerves to be able to take care of that right away.

[Aside: if I find a book in the store that I want AND I can afford to buy it then, I buy it. I figure in my case, it’s cheaper than buying a wing of the library that will never be named after me.]

Next I went to another building where I thought the physical IT help desk was located. It wasn’t. So I stopped in at another office where the student worker helped me figure out where I needed to go. Turns out, I needed to go back to the library where I had just been! I went back and got that part taken care of also, which was that of having trouble accessing my U tools online. The student worker at the computer lab was able to help me out. It took no more than five minutes- thank God again!


Later on, I headed on to the bus towards home.

Across the aisle sat one man, another man was seated in front of me facing the center. A woman sat next to the man across. The bus wasn’t crowded. After a couple stops, the woman moved to sit next to me. I thought maybe she’s like me, more comfortable sitting with another female and maybe she hadn’t seen me earlier when she first sat down.

As the bus approached a station, the guy across started… giggling (?) to himself. The man in front looked at him, then looked at us. I thought I might be hearing wrong as I had my iPod on, which I never have the volume very loud either. I turned it down and yup, the guy was laughing with himself.

He got off the bus at the station. The guy in front turned to us and motioned his hand towards his mouth, saying, “Smoking.” I’m thinking he meant that the giggler was probably on ice. Well, at least he kept to himself…?


Anyways, the bus ride was uncomfortable for my leg. If I sit up, my foot doesn’t reach the floor flat. If I make my foot flat on the floor, the slouching makes my back ache. I figure it’s better to keep my back okay- sorry leg.


When I got home, I was physically exhausted. It felt good! Well, except for my leg. I think it went to sleep before the rest of me did. Getting closer to getting back into the gym!

Thank you for reading.

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