All posts by honeymustardseeds

Putting a Hospital in a Tsunami Zone.

Does anyone see the problem? Anyone?


So there’s a hospital that lives in the tsunami zone of Gold Beach, Curry County, Oregon. There was a general consensus that the old hospital needed to go; it’s old, run down, ect. The voters of Curry County voted in a bond measure to rebuild the hospital. Well, yeah, that’s a good idea. It’s already in the tsunami zone, and now it can be rebuilt! I think most people assumed that it was terribly obvious that it would be moved somewhere that made more sense.

Someone asked, apparently too little too late [Note: These are not actual quotes said by anyone.] – “Hey guys, where’s the new hospital going to go?” and they said “Oh. Yeah – we’re just going to use the old parking lot!” to which anyone with common sense said “But you’re in a tsunami zone. You knew you were in a tsunami zone before you decided to make a new hospital, why would you put in the same spot? Please don’t do this.” and the hospital people said “No, this is fine.”

Except, you know, it’s not. Did Japan teach us nothing? I really thought that would be a great learning experience, but I guess people really like to take the “It won’t happen to us” stance.

In their (very small) defense, the Oregon Public Broadcasting created a short video explaining why they chose to stay in the same location:

“Local officials say they don’t have many good options.”
So…that means they still had options. In my opinion, as soon as the new hospital is erected and operational, those officials should be held responsible for any tsunami related incidents that cause harm to their staff or patients. They knew the risks, and they built it anyway. This hospital is expected to be completed this year, by the way.

Not only have they now put the  hospital staff and its patients in danger, they have arguably now given any possible survivors very little chance of getting medical help during a tsunami emergency. It’s probably really hard to help people if the hospital got wiped out.

What else is really disappointing is that the hospital website, even knowing they are in a tsunami zone, have no escape route or plan mapped out on their website. How would a visiting family know where to find a patient if they were evacuated?

Apparently, the hospital is going to be one of the first to built “with any consideration of a tsunami impact”. Whatever that means…

All I can say is I wish them the best of luck during a disaster. This is very disappointing news.




An Unexpected Turn, and the Frustration with Contacting Professors

Well, the job is going swellily. We get quite a bit time off inbetween jobs, and I’m just ending my second week off. I’m finding it kinda hard to stay entertained, and yet keeping an eye out for a source of income that would help me stay home more often than not. Mostly just something I could do in-between jobs. I still keep hoping I can make a small living off of video games, but try as I might, that remains to be seen.

Anywho, the ol’ boyfriend up and decided that he wants to get out of the military and go to the University of Wyoming. Which is FANTASIC news, in a way. I’m a bit tired of being told where to go – it gets exhausting pretending to like an area that isn’t up your alley.

If we follow through with this, I will be over the moon. UWyo is my top choice for grad school. I love Wyoming, they have a fantastic geophysics department, and one of the professors research is exactly what I’m interested in. The problem is, I can’t get him to respond to my emails. I’ve only sent 3, and they’ve been spaced out enough to not feel like they were bombarding him, but just friendly reminders like “Hey! I know you’re busy, but just in case you meant to get back to me and forgot, I’m still here!” (Not in those exact words, but that’s what I was aiming for.)  We are planning a trip to the University next month, and it’s driving me up the wall that the professor hasn’t gotten back to me. I want to know if he’ll be available any time in June, because I will make sure I’m there the same time he is so he can at least see my face and possibility remember me.

Then there’s the possibility that we move there, and I don’t get into the grad program. Then what? I don’t know if I should talk to other professors in different areas of study and hope I find one that sticks just to attend the university, but I feel like that’s what’s going to happen if I don’t get ahold of the guy I’d rather work with.

The last email I sent was two weeks ago now, explaining that I will be at the University in June, driving all the way from Michigan just to see the department, and I would like to know if he’s going to be around. I also said this is the last email I’m sending before I attempt to call your office. I have no idea if this is the acceptable thing to do or not. I don’t know if I should call the department office first and get the skinny. Maybe the guy is in the hospital? But I feel I could have found that information somewhere on the internet. Trust me, I google-fu’d the hell out of this guy.

I figure I would wait a week or two after graduation so that he can get the break I no doubt he needs, and possibly be more receptive to talking. I’m probably stressing out too much about this, because grad school wouldn’t even happen until Fall 2017. I also have no idea how far ahead I should be trying schmoozle. I do know that I’ll be actually studying for the GRE this time.

Well….thanks for reading, guys. I know I don’t update that often, but thanks for sticking with me. Any advice would be appreciated.



An update worth blogging for.

Well, I can finally say I’ve got my pinky toe in the door. I don’t know if it’s the right door, but it’s a door that wasn’t there before.

I landed an “intern” gig at a geophysical company. This past weekend was my first few days out in the grind. It’s…interesting. There’s not too much actual geology going on (not that I’m complaining), and I actually didn’t learn that there wouldn’t be until I was out there. It’s just acquiring information that gets to sent to someone who interprets it.


This particular gig meets most of the things I have been hoping for:

  • I get to travel a fair amount – so far, it’s been in OK places. The neat thing is that I’ll never really be in a city and that’s something I was actually hoping for. No cities for me, please!
  • My gas is paid for, my mileage is paid for, my incidentals are paid for. HELLO PER DIEM! Separate from mileage and gas by the way! This is  a new thing for me. It’s got me pumped. It’s got me addicted to being in the field. $40 a day just for showing up? On top of hourly? Yes, please – may I have another? Which leads me to –
  • Other than my boss and the observer (the guy who makes the program pick up the information) everyone is kinda…lazy. Because the pay is hourly, every tries to take their sweet ass time doing anything. Including driving 10 miles under the speed limit. Counting to five before taking off at a green stop light…annoying things like that. So it’s kinda not the toughest job in the world.
  • MAD MONEY! I got my first little taste of what it’s like in to work in the oil and gas industry. And of course, I’m hooked. Which is good because this leads me to the con list.


  • Crazy hours! My schedule is 7am-7pm 7 days a week. Unless it’s rainy or too windy or too noisy…thus, the mad money!
  • I’m the only girl. It’s not that bad, but I do get tired of guys correcting themselves when they accidentally cuss around me. Just don’t be creepy and I’ll be happy. Otherwise, be crass or gross or whatever it is you do. I’m good.
  • Potential to be away from home for a very long time. One guy was telling me how he worked for 8 months straight one time…that’s crazy. I think I’d buy a travel trailer at that point.


This is exciting and I just started. The people I mainly work with are fantastic so far, and very accommodating! I’ll keep ya’ll updated with any new developments!



Move Along – Nothing To See Here

Well – the title says it all. Nothing to see here. Nothing new to report. I found a “good enough” job to keep me busy while I basically wait to figure out what I really want to do.

I’d also like to say that I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about what I want to do – but mostly, I’ve just convinced myself I’m either “in between jobs” or “in between degrees”.


Been trying to use free resources to teach myself how to build websites – a little bit of javascript here and there. Refreshing on basic Spanish…just little time-fillers. Debating on what I should study – redo my GRE and shoot for a much better score, or study to become a Foreign Service Officer and put my degree to use and hope I don’t get stuck in the Middle East.


Decisions, decisions. Stay lovely.

Get a Haircut and Get a Real Job

Okay, I know I promised somewhere that this would be a “life after college” blog. Here’s my first real chapter in “life after college”. It’s been a while since my last post because shit basically hit the fan. I sacrificed my B.S. degree to take a paid internship, and now have a B.A. in Geology. I moved from California to Michigan. I am now living in a state that I’ve never been to, let alone the time zone. I have no friends here. I have no connections. No networking opportunities. I have since had a BBQ blow up in my face, got rid of half of my belongings, and I am currently a part-time cashier at a grocery store.I am so desperate for friends, I made a missed connection post on Craigslist with a person who I asked where they got their shirt. No reply yet. sad face

So. I have complied a list of steps of what I have done, and what I expect to do, with some major venting in between. I hope that it works out in my favor, because that means it may help out someone else in the same position. Maybe they can learn from my mistakes. This is what I hope for. Ready for Step 1?

Step 1: Accept that the university you attended isn’t getting you in the place you wanted to be.

Yeah yeah, I know it totally sounds like I’m trying to place blame on anything but myself, but I’m really just looking at the facts here. The university I attended was very heavy on the “Just look for our alumni! They are all across America, you won’t have a problem!” Well, here I am. All the way across America, about 9 states away. Guess what? Nobody has ever heard of my university, and nor do they care about that university because guess what again? Nobody cares unless you have oil related classes, and mine didn’t have a single one. In fact, the university wanted us to sign something saying we would never involve ourselves in environment-destroying jobs.

Really though, you actually want me to hold off on paying for $50,000 worth of debt because it makes you look more environmentally friendly than other universities? Fuck off.

Also, I’m realizing that the department is more set up for pushing out “basic” geologists and funneling them into grad schools so that those schools can deal with giving us the experience we need to move up in the world. The professors, I eventually noticed, only went out of their way for students who also wanted to go into academia. Forget the ones who actually want to work after school. So at this point, I am going to be forced to go to grad school. Not that I have anything against grad school mind you, this is just what’s going to happen instead of finding even a mildly related job in my field. Unless I volunteer. Which brings me to Step 3.

But first…

Step 2: Take any god damned job you can get your hands on. Even if they are just place holders until you get that career you’re hoping for.

This is the place I’m at now. Say hello to your newest (and cutest!?) part-time cashier at your local grocery store. AWESOME use of my degree, right?

This is my life right now. Part-time cashiering at a very expensive, but large and REALLY SLOW, grocery store. Grasping at any opportunity to do anything productive. Anything but stand there. Anything but play with a rubber band for an hour, waiting for the next customer. Can I at least straighten the candy? Come on, let me leave my post!

Okay I’ll stop whining…here’s my point: This step sucks. This is the arguably the worst step. This part is so un-fulfilling and depressing. The part where everyone around you seems to be doing exactly what they went to school for. Universally…this part really sucks. This is the step that starts to make you feel worthless, your degree worthless, your rock collection doesn’t mean anything to you anymore…it’s gets sad. You get sad. But you just have to remember, don’t stop applying. Don’t be afraid to take a part time job or three just to get by. Don’t be afraid to drop those part time job like flies if anything better pops up (but don’t let them catch on to that…).

I’m going to side step real quickly and elaborate something about step 2.

Step 2 is dangerous. Step 2 is what scares me the most, because I am currently stuck on step 2. I really think Step 2 is where you can really get stuck in an endless cycle of shitty retail jobs for the rest of your life. This honestly applies to anyone, not just geology people of course. I am a good cashier, okay? I’ve done almost nothing but cashier jobs since I was 15. I worked through high school, and I worked after high school, and I worked through community college clear up until I went to university. I have almost 12 years of retail under my belt. Do you know what that gets me? Endless retail jobs. Not geology jobs.

I honestly thought that having any work experience would really help with finding geo work, because I know that there are fresh students with absolutely no work experience under their belt. I thought for sure that would be my leg-up. I thought for sure that showing I was able to work 3 different jobs with no days off for 4 months straight showed that I had drive, and was willing to do just about anything to hold a job….but it’s not enough. Thanks to the gas price crash, geologists with years of geology experience under their belts are taking any job they can get, thus leaving people like me competing with people like them.

I know that what I have now is not enough, and I am no longer competitive.I have come to terms that I have to take a different approach to this.

Cue Step 3

Step 3: Volunteer

Here is the next step I’m taking to try to be competitive. I’m hoping that ANY work experience and good references in the geo job sector will get my a leg up, and help me find that career I’m looking for.

After talking to a few geologists in my new town, it sounds like I’m not even going to land a volunteer gig. My landlord’s oldest son is a geologist, and I finally got to speak to him last week. I told him many of my colleague’s were finding junior geologist jobs with consulting just months after graduation. These people were my good friends, and I know that they didn’t just use connections to find their positions. One hadn’t even graduated yet, and wasn’t the best student in the department, and landing a very awesome gig in the bay area. She said she just watched interview help videos on youtube and nailed the interview. Yeah but…how did you even get an interview? What the fuck am I doing wrong? Anyways…He didn’t believe me. He actually didn’t believe that my colleagues were finding jobs so fast. He thought that I was just saying that to make myself look better….which I don’t know how that works. Running into him is going to be awkward at the least. “Oh yeah, remember me? The desperate lying recent graduate who will say anything to get a job.” Uuuggghhh.


I did not let him get me down. I got dressed up today. I dressed up my resume. I did some major google-fu and found a couple of geology companies. I walked into the one that was my first choice and tried to talk to the geologist there about volunteering and just tagging along. I only talked to the receptionist, and she went up to the geologist’s office and was there for some time. She comes down and says he was about to leave for the day, but here is his card. Email him. He is great at responding quickly. Cool. Now I have his name. Commence Facebook search.

Step 3.1: Networking…kinda.

This is like a subsection of Step 3….because this is experimental on my part. Here’s how this is going to go in my head. I checked his facebook to make sure he drinks. Of course he drinks. He’s a geologist. But I’m in the Midwest and needed to double check and make sure he wasn’t one of the religious fanatics around here. USE FACEBOOK TO YOUR ADVANTAGE PEOPLE! Anyways, I shoot him an email. I tell him I don’t know how to say I want to volunteer without making it sound like I am desperate. I really just want to tag a long and see what kind of work  this sector entails, as it is really different from the area that I am coming from.

After shooting off professional yada’yada’yada, I leave another paragraph: “On a less professional note, I am very new to the area and have no friends or colleagues. It would be really nice if we could get together over a beer and talk geology, if nothing else.”  I bet he sees right through that bullshit. I don’t want it to be bullshit, though. I REALLY DO want to have a beer with him if nothing else.

Honestly, I”m not at my “desperate for a job” point yet. I am, however “desperate for friends” point. I would be just as ecstatic over making a new geology friend over a geology job. Kinda.

Okay. I will leave it at this, because this is as far as I’ve gotten. No reply from geo guy. No landed geo interviews. No new geo connections.

Stay lovely, my WordPress strangers. Cheers.

The flowing landscapes of geologic time may be likened to a kinetoscope panorama. The scenes transform from age to age, as from act to act; seas and plains and mountains follow and replace each other through time, as the traveler sees them replace each other in space…Science demonstrates that mountains are transient forms, but the eye of man through all his lifetime sees no change, and his reason is appalled at the thought of duration so vast that the millenniums of written history have not recorded the shifting of even one of the fleeting views whose blendings make the moving picture.

-Joseph Barrell

Famous rocks of Maria Island; From Painted to Fossil Cliffs [Tasmania, Australia]

This is a spectacular blog. This is the kind of blogging I hope to do someday. 🙂

Exploring the Earth

Maria Island, Maria, Tasmania, Australia, geology, travel, blog, adventure, hiking, exploring, earth, science, rocks, nature, geomorphology, Map of Maria Island with respect to Tasmania and mainland Australia

Intro: An island off an island off an island; welcome to Maria! I recently jumped aboard the opportunity to go on a weekend field excursion run by Geological Association of Australia (GSA) and the university to this wonderful little island off the east coast of Tasmania, Australia. The whole island is a protected national park, and not only is it home to copious colonies of cute Tassie animals like wombats, kangaroos and Tasmanian devils, but it also contains some of the most beautiful and stunning geology you can find here in Tasmania! Ranging from ‘Painted’ to ‘Fossil’ Cliffs, I’ll give a brief background on why the rocks are just so spectacular on Maria Island.

Maria Island, Maria, Tasmania, Australia, geology, travel, blog, adventure, hiking, exploring, earth, science, rocks, nature, geomorphology, painted cliffs, sandstone leisegang, iron-oxide, bands, rings Beautiful red and yellow iron-oxide bands in sandstone at Painted Cliffs – Maria Island, Tasmania, Australia

Maria Island, Maria, Tasmania, Australia, geology, travel, blog, adventure, hiking, exploring, earth, science, rocks, nature, geomorphology, fossil cliffs, bishop and clerk North coast of Maria Island showing Fossil Cliffs…

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A Wasted Winter Break?

Pretend you are a geologist for a second, and then pretend like you were just told you can’t drink beer for a while. And now pretend you’re devastated, because that’s what would happen if you were a geologist. This is has been what it’s like the last couple of weeks.

I’ve been having, over the past year or so, some crazy nausea problem. Like, every day, in the morning and afternoons specifically, I was having debilitating nausea. Couldn’t talk, couldn’t walk, and worst of all, couldn’t throw up. I wished and wished I could just throw up and feel better, but it never happened. I couldn’t even make myself do it. Was in and out of the doctor’s constantly, xray after xray and they couldn’t find anything. Eventually, I started cutting out different foods trying to isolate the problem. Turns out, food was never the problem. I figured it out after getting too shaky for my chem labs and cut out the one consistency of my day. Coffee. Coffee was the problem. Can you believe that? Do you know what that news is like? Well, pretend like you read the first paragraph. It’s like that.

But at least I am slowly starting to feel better. I am now realizing that it may also be an anxiety problem. Since it’s starting to feel like I have to give a public speech or presentation every time I leave the house. I don’t know where this started, though. I never had anxiety for public speaking until this last semester. I start to freeze, my thoughts get jumbled, ect. I need to work on that again. (If you have this problem, I suggest this: Get a couple of magazine with a lot of people in them. Cut out the faces and hang them on your wall at eye-height. It helps you make eye contact and gets you used to having all these eyes staring you all the time. I did this in high school and it’s helped me a bunch. At least till now? I just need to do it again!) I just feel like that all the time. I think it may be the imminent thesis looming and haunting me.


My productive winter break, why have you eluded me so?

If only I had a nickel for every time I told myself how productive I’d be over winter break. I’d have like, 50 cents! I knew it was a lie to myself from the beginning. I knew some other shit would pop up and ruin it. That’s always the case. This time, it was one of my roommates deciding he wanted to move out. After thoroughly convincing me and my other roommate that he was going to stick around for this last semester, of course.

So not only am I having to move and clean, but I’ve made minimal progress on my thesis and internship. At least I got a front page designed in Photoshop. Progress, right? Now to just teach myself to use Dreamweaver in the next two weeks so I can work on a little bit here and there in between my last classes. As far as my thesis goes – well, eh, I’ve more or less thought about going to the library. Maybe I’ll get around to doing that today after I pick up a few odds and ends from my old place. Yeah. I think I’ll do that.

I have at least made time for some fun. I bought way too many games for the holiday Steam sale and have been playing a little bit here and there. I accidentally got drunk at a bonfire. That was embarrassing. Just in case you didn’t know, if there are only 4 beers to a pack, there is a reason for that. Also, my fault for never checking the alcohol content of Rasputin and drinking 3 before it was time to go home. I drove to the beach, and someone had to drive me back. Again, embarrassing, but I learned my lesson and that particular friend will be getting a thank-you cake soon.

Back to the winter break grind, ya’ll. Only two more weeks until my last semester.


Pet Peeve’s

We all have them. Some are more irrational than others. Some you have no idea where or why something like that could bother someone like you.

For some reason, my pet peeve’s have been popping up all over the place. Okay, well not all over the place. I don’t have that many.

My first, and main one, is leaving a wet sponge/rag/absorbent dish-washing device in the sink. Disgusting. I won’t touch it, and I won’t do the dishes. At least, not without gagging. It’s wet, and mold and bacteria grow on it. A lot. Just wring it out when you’re done and let it air dry or pop it  in the microwave for a few seconds to kill the germs. Too easy.

The second – people who see things in black and white. People who are perfectly okay with accepting the easiest or least complicated answer. People who think or say, “Well, that’s just how it is.” I’ve spent my whole life learning how things are never as simple as they seem. The people who will actually argue with another person about “how things are” are the absolute worst.  Nothing aggravates me more. It’s *never* that simple. Ever! And they should know that, because they’re human! And have experiences! People have experiences, right? Like, their whole lives? They experience things not going their way, or things being more complicated than they once thought? Do they really not self-reflect and do they really not think about how things happen? Work? REALLY?

It’s also not as simple as them just thinking it’s simple, I guess.

Whatevs. <—(somebody’s pet peeve, somewhere)


Nerd Alert

I just bought a stereo microscope with a digital camera….

…so that I can look for forams from the comfort of my home.

No more long, cold, lonely nights alone. No more hunching over in chairs, or going cross-eyed or migraine’s from constant kinks in my neck.

You have no idea how excited I am.
Bonus: I can now take pictures for making 3D models of my forams!