2009 Sep 20 | Vagabond Cirque, dodgeball

Aw, this guy was trying to check on something in his lap, but he had to keep looking up at the light to see if it changed. I wish I could have told him, "Hey, don't worry about the light; just focus on what you're looking at. When the light turns green, I'll just give a nice friendly beep." But there's no way to communicate that in the 30 seconds we're sitting at the light.

Sunday we ate at Hoang My, a Vietnamese restaurant on Scarsdale, which was really good and had huge portions.

And they had bubble tea. I love sucking up the tapioca pearls.

They also had free suckers, but I wanted watermelon, and the only one I could see was pretty far down, so I had to dig it out.

Plantains just look like nasty bananas.

I had grabbed some of these...

... but was worried the clerk would get them confused with these, which are more expensive. After all, there's only a slight difference in size. Then I realized they have stickers with numbers on them and the clerk wouldn't even look at the actual fruit.

I almost didn't realize this was one pen and one pencil; they look almost exactly the same.

Ooh, finally a short line at the money center so I can buy some stamps.

Aw, this was cute. The employee was playing with the kid.

Monday mornings we have dispensary (helping people pick out glasses, adjusting glasses, repairing glasses, etc). However, it's super slow from about 8am to 10am, when the exams get out, so we just sit around and study.

We usually have a few people walking in early to pick up their glasses, but today the first person wasn't until 9:15.

Grr... I hate dropping and then trying to find the tiny glasses screws. I'm going to get a little magnet to pick them up.

I hate spring-loaded frames, too. The piece on the temple has a spring that pulls it back so you can't get the screw in. We stuck a little piece of metal behind it to make it stay out, and it still took two of us working together over 15 minutes to get it in.

Sigh, only after standing in line at Wal-Mart to I realize the little shipping center on campus sells stamps.

Awww... nobody is employee of the month?

A magazine for the students at UH with a nightly drink specials section. None of the specials seemed that great, though.

Dr. Bergmanson is having Oktoberfest after one of our classes, with food and drink. He's a really fun guy.

This was weird...

... the little opening is labeled "to share"...

... and the large opening is "not to share." Isn't that backwards? Or does the little opening someone make it easier to shake many out and the big opening you're expected to just pick one out? I'm confused.

There must be a test coming up.

One of my patients mentioned her little brother threw this little sticky eyeball toy up on the ceiling of the clinic years ago, and every time she comes in for an eye exam, she checks to see if it's still there. And it is.

Fran got free tickets to Radio Music Theater (a three-person improv group) on Thursday night, and they were really funny.

I wonder if the cart gatherers are all on break.

Some people watching a movie with a projector and screen. That's a fun idea.

Friday night we went to Greg Behrendt because I got free tickets to him. They usually do that only when they don't sell enough early in the week, but this time it was packed. Hmmm...

The waiter accidentally brought us these drinks. We figured they were for the people at the table next to us, so we asked them if they were theirs. The guy said yes, but that he didn't want them now. Uh, we didn't even touch them, and even if we had, it's not like we were oozing disease into them. When the waiter came, I told him what happened and to take the drinks back, hide for a few minutes, and then bring the same drinks out to the other couple. He took them away, but eventually he brought them back to us, so we ended up drinking them for free.

He and the opening acts were all pretty funny.

Why don't you just put a sticker saying "I'm a nut" on your car?

Ugh, Saturday class from 8am to 4pm. At least he kept it kind of interesting with some cases. The best one was about a guy who caught a disease in Mexico and admitted to using prostitutes while there, especially because Brittany, who is all sweet and innocent, had to read it.

The FedEx office doesn't have cash? Weird.

Saturday night a few of us met at the Grand Lux Cafe for dinner, which is basically a slightly-more upscale Cheesecake Factory. The portions are huge, so if you take some home, you can get another meal or two out of it, which makes the prices not quite so bad.

And the desserts are really good.

It wouldn't be quite so bad if they didn't have the "Islamic" in there. Yeah, theocracies are bad, but that word gives the protest more of an anti-Islamic-in-general vibe than an anti-regime one.

Sunday night was the Vagabond Cirque at Avant Garden.

There's an upper bar, but it wasn't open tonight.

Most of the acts were belly dancers.

This guy was a walk-around magician, though.

There's a nice little balcony you can watch the back stage from.

There were three stages, so having a schedule was really helpful so we could go to wherever the best acts were going to be and get seats early.

A bigger group of belly dancers. The middle-left girl was Asian, which doesn't really fit, but she was really fun.

I can understand professional photographers want to get really good shots, but this woman was a little too aggressive. She kept sighing when she didn't get a good picture, and she smashed down the plants on the railing to get them out of her way. That annoyed me enough that I stayed in the spot with the best angle for the dancers below so she couldn't have it.

An indoor belly dancer.

Some more outdoors.

A little area out front.

Houston Gendermyn, which was kind of a semi-contortionist group. A lot of crawling around on each other and things, which was really neat.

More belly dancers.

A special performance in memory of Caitlyn Bibeau, a girl with sacrococcygeal teratoma who only lived for 11 hours after her birth. All of the proceeds from the Cirque wento to Texas Children's Hospital, all of the artists performed for free, and the owner of Avant Garden let them use the space for free as well.

Some flamenco dancers.

This belly dancer troupe had my favorite costumes.

Ooh, everyone loves the fire performers.

Shorter ones.

A staff (which I liked because he set the floor on fire a few times).

More fire.

More fire.

More fire.

More fire.

Another set of belly dancers.

These two had a lot of fun.

Even though they had a slight wardrobe malfunction of some sort, they fixed it mid-dance and kept going.

The light switches in this room are up near the ceiling, but thankfully the magician is really tall.

Gendermyn again.

The glow-in-blacklight outfits were really cool.

Another magician.

And the fire performers again.




All of the fire performers at the end.

A video of the Cirque.

Oh, yeah, my laptop is back from Dell!

Wait... what's this... the drivers for the modem aren't installed, so I can't get online? And something is wrong with the video card so some other programs won't work? Uh, great repair, guys. Giant alerts popped up about these as soon as the computer starts, so how did they miss them? I spend a few hours Sunday trying to find drivers that would work to no avail, so I think I'm gonna have to ship it back again. Dumb Dell repair.

Sunday we played dodgeball for the first time in a while. Usually we play on the tennis courts, but there were actual tennis players there, so we threw down a hose for the line and played in the grass, which I actually preferred.

Aw, this little kid and his mother happened to be walking by and we let him play. Thankfully nobody nailed him.

It's annoying when all the balls end up on one side of the court, so I usually run back and feed the other team balls when it happens.

It was actually a pretty good workout; some of my muscles are a little sore.

Video of dodgeball. (It has comments, but you have to click on "YouTube" in the bottom-right corner and watch it in a larger mode to see them.)

Ooh, this is nice. It's a table of the cheapest prices for a few days before and after your preferred flight.