Carol Bontekoe

This blog has been keeping track of my adventures since 2004. The stories and the adventures have come from my college dorm room to Uganda, Peace Corps Kyrgyzstan, learning Dutch in the Netherlands to living in the wilds of Homer, Alaska. I went back to school in Amsterdam to study Theaterwetenschap (Theatre Science) at University of Amsterdam. And now my adventures as a Fruit Fly, a Sexy Unicorn, and creating a movement with Team Sparkle in Chicago.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Dax is still my karaoke Nemesis

I'm going to skip right past the fact that I will turn in 4 sheets for 4 different songs and than Dax will have the balls to come up to me and say, "You going to sing tonight?" And still not call me!
No that would be petty to point out these kind of things.

Dax decided to make fun of Susan Boyle tonight. He put on an ugly dress and a bra with a ugly wig. Than he made fun of the fact that the video of Susan Boyle singing I Dreamed the Dream(see below if you haven't seen the video yet)got over 9 million hits in less than a month. I guess it didn't cross his mind that it has been watched so many times because people are pulling for Susan Boyle. So, he proceeded to sing I dreamed the dream terribly and grabbing himself inappropriately the whole time. I think when no one is laughing along with you grabbing your junk is the most desperate move ever.
The tension in the bar was thick. In one swoop he totally changed the mood of the bar. I have only ever been in that uncomfortable of a mood in a bar once before. In California when a comic-who used to be on SNL- kept saying the N word over and over again. People asked him to stop but he kept going and saying N this N that. I feel it should be mentioned that comic is white.
I guess it hadn't crossed Dax's mind that the people in the bar can only hope to be like Susan Boyle someday. There are some AMAZING singers at karaoke here in Homer. I think they hope that someday they can go to a talent competition and over night become an international sensation.
You could feel that people wanted to boo him. There was just one problem with that- he gets to decide who sings next. So, what can you do? Just sit silently. Turn your back, like I and many other people did.
All I can say is go ahead Susan do your thing! And to all the Homerites: isn't Dax a total Douche Nasal?

Saturday, May 16, 2009

That's just how I feel.

I love Nick Drake.
I just want to get that off my chest before typing-I can't listen to Nick Drake.
His music makes me too sad. Too moody. I often refer to his music as Melancholy music(I like to feel as if I'm in a Shakespearean play sometimes)
The definition of Melancholy from Merriam-Webster is:
1 a: an abnormal state attributed to an excess of black bile and characterized by irascibility or depression b: black bile c: melancholia
2 a: depression of spirits : dejection b: a pensive mood

A depression of spirits...Definitely... In case you are like me and have no idea what that Black Bile stuff is all about I looked it up:
Black Bile- a humor of medieval physiology believed to be secreted by the kidneys or spleen and to cause melancholy
If you are like me you want to move past this, because you still have no idea.

I feel that the fact that I feel Melancholy while listening to his music is a testament to how amazing his music really is. He killed himself when he was my age and when you listen to the music you can see why and if you listen to it for too long you start to contemplate it yourself. That's AWESOME! That means he was so good he got you to truly feel what he was going through.

The thing is I can listen to really melancholy music, I just need it jazzed up a bit. I love music that has a jazzy beat and has just the saddest lyrics. One of my favorite examples of this kind of music is Blind Melon's No Rain.
With its little snaps and wooooooooooooooooooo oo oo oo ooooooooooooooooooo oo oo oo ooooooooooooooo and cool 90's sound it's easy to over look lyrics like:

And I don't understand why I sleep all day
And I start to complain that there's no rain
Its not's not sane

The latter goes on for a long time of him singing its not sane
That's quite sad. Yet if I hear this song in the bar I'm singing right along snappin' with one hand holding my beer in the other.

I have tons of examples but I will just give one more:
Stephen Stills-Love the One You're With
It so upbeat sounding that you can't help but bop and jive(bop and jive...what am I sixty?) along with the music. Once you start actually listening to the lyrics it is so sad. It's all about settling for someone.

Don’t be angry, don’t be sad, and don’t sit cryin’ over good times you’ve had. There’s a girl right next to you, and she’s just waitin’ for something to do.
and the most famous part
and if you can’t be with the one you love, honey, love the one you’re with, love the one you’re with, love the one you’re with, love the one you’re with.

Sometimes when I hear this song I imagine a couple sitting together in the car and this song comes up. The man turns up the music and looks at the girl and says, "Yep, definitely. This should be our wedding song"

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Pot Luck Wednesday

On Wednesday nights my friends and I get together to have a pot luck. They are held at my soon to be apartment. There is nothing really in the apartment because Liz(my soon to be roomie) and myself have been living out of backpacks for years.
Today Liz ran out of paper towels. I had for gotten my towel at the apartment Saturday night. When I showed up to the pot luck tonight I noticed my towel sitting on a kitchen counter. I moved it over and way from the counter since that is my end of my shower towel. Sitting near the food we were about to eat and being used to dry off the dish we were about to eat from didn't seem right.
I hadn't noticed that Liz had taken back the towel to the kitchen area. Our token boy Max was using the towel to dry off his hands. I asked, "Is that my towel?" Liz reluctantly said that it is my towel.
"Why is it back in the kitchen?"
No answer.
That's when I decided to say a real party killing sentence.
Max decided to put down the towel and re-wash his hands.
Bathroom towels and kitchen towels are not interchangable things.

Sunday, May 10, 2009


To my great scrabble/boggle buddy. My mom!

Monday, May 4, 2009


I love Flickr. I admit it. I think Flickr is the best of all the photo websites. Since I am someone who needs constant validation Flickr is right up my alley.
On Flickr you can post your photos within different groups. Than other people can give you "awards". The "awards" give me an inflated sense of myself.
I don't just get to receive awards I also get to give Awards away. The power is intoxicating. I get to bestow awards upon others. Decide whether their photos are worthy of me copying and pasting an award in the comment box.
Lately I've been given a daily project to do each day. My friend Becky asked me to do a 365 day self portrait challenge with her. I love it. It makes sure I take my camera with me and I'm always looking for different ways to take a picture of myself. Today is my 12th. What will I decide to take a picture of myself doing? I don't know yet. That's what makes it so much fun. I think I do a pretty good job updating this blog, I have to say I do a GREAT job updating my self portraits. So, if you just aren't getting enough of me here you can get even more of me through my self-portraits.

These are my friend Becky's Self Portraits. They are pretty amazing:

My friend MAndy also decided that this looked like fun and got in on the fun too. Her photos are awesomely artsy:

I love the difference between all of our Self Portraits. It think it shows the differences in all of our personalities, the way we see the world, and ourselves.
Who else wants to get involved? It's fun! :)

Something is wrong with this story.

I checked out a new church today. So long as I have been living in Homer, AK I have been attending the United Methodist Church. There is a slight age discrepancy between me and the majority of the congregation. A mere 40-50 years difference. I often feel a bit isolated and alone within the church. I arrive alone, I sit alone, and than after church during fellowship hour I stand alone with a plate full of cheese. One step away from literally being the cheese stands alone.
A couple weeks ago I talked three friends into going with me. Than last week as I was crafting away one of my friends who had visited my church made some jokes about the age difference. Another friend suggested I come and check out her church that is held in the gym of an elementary school in town. She informed me that it is a bit more youthnized.
I told me pastor and some others last night that I would be checkin' out the "Rock Church" in town. They said that was good and I should check out the church.
Well, umph.
If you aren't going to even put up a fight for your only 20/30/40 something within the church than I will go and check it out.
The "Rock Church" has all the hip elements of the groovy new churches. A Rock Band, Lighting, a projector, pastors that are middle aged but dress like moody emo teenagers(i.e. Rob Bell). All of it.
The thing is I have no idea what the pastor's message was. None what so ever. Yet, his sermon might be one of the all time most memorable sermons I have ever heard.
There was something about Leviticus in there but the part I will remember was a story from his youth. When he was 14 he was driving across country with his uncle and cousin. This is when he had his first driving experience. His uncle asked him if he wanted to sit on his lap and drive.
No. That can't be right.
I looked around. People weren't looking in disgust and whispering. That just led me to believe they weren't really paying attention. I turned to my friend Liz and she started laughing too. She was listening.
He was 14... and his uncle let him sit on his lap and drive. We aren't talking about a 7 year old. At 14 while you might not be fully grown you surely don't have to sit on someone lap to drive. Heck, farm kids can get certain kinds of licenses at 13. I was 6' by the age of 10. My brothers were driving the car to school around the same age, until the school called me mom. I have no plans on asking my nieces and nephews to sit on my lap and drive when they are teenagers. How did they even fit?
I couldn't listen to anything else. I was just thinking that his uncle was wildly inappropriate and he doesn't even seem to realize it. Neither did the couple hundred people sitting in this little gym. And why at 14 wasn't he aware that your uncle asking you to sit on his lap is not okay. What about his cousin? His Uncle's son sitting there in the car? Was no one aware how inappropriate this whole thing was?! Why is he telling us this?! IS he trying to be funny about a molesting uncle?!
No one else seemed to be as tramatized by what he had said as I clearly was. I tried to make up reasons for why a 14 year old would sit in his uncles lap to drive. Reasons that people must be telling themselves so no one has to deal with this extremely revealing story. He was tiny. Teeny...Tiny...Itsy...bitsy. That's it. Until he was in his 20s people thought he was a midget. Yeah... than he had this freakish growth spirt where suddenly he caught up to everyone else. And now no one ever knows except, when he tells his sitting-on-his-uncle's-lap-at-14 story, that he used to be a teeny weeny teenager.
That has to be it!
I can pay attention again.
Oh, Sermon is over.
Ready for some Bon Jovi-esque Christian Rockin'.
I'm totally going again. You never know what weird hidden detail from his past we will try to just clip in next week.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Settling in

I finally got to play Settlers of Catan tonight. I have been waiting ever since I moved to Alaska to get someone to play with me.
I got 4 people to play with me in fact. Don't want to brag but I'm pretty hip around here with the 50+ crowd.
At church tonight there was a game night and since I have been waiting 5 cold months to play Settlers I had to bring it along. It's weird trying to get people to play games around here. During the winter everyone says it's too cold to go anywhere. Than once it gets nice out it's too nice to go and play a board game. It never seems to be the right weather for a board game.
It was funny play with some older people. I kept being told was nothing like the games they grew up with. I was had to keep saying that's what makes this game so great. I warned them that it is highly addictive. The proof is in my friends and family who almost all own the game and play whenever thy get the chance.
Pastor Charles could easily fit in with my family when playing. He isn't got the idea of the trading and was one of the best and most aggressive traders I have ever seen. People were trying to be nice while playing. I had never experienced that. I'm used to the go for the jugular playing of 318 Elm Place and at family get-togethers.I knew Pastor Charles would like the game while we were playing Scrabble. He kept trying to trade letters, a natural Settlers player.
One of my favorite parts of coming home is playing games. ONe of the things that makes living far away, not playing games. One of the elderly ladies said she would teach me a game called sequence sometime. I'm down. I love that Homer feels more like home everyday.