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Archive for the ‘Humor’ Category

After a long hiatus, the old Walk-O-Rama family was all united again, and that’s worth chronicling.

Winter was here, at least in Australia, and that meant the long-lost bastard who had not been seen for several seasons, John, had made a surprise return. You remember him. We last saw him as he was sneaking off to a faraway land to save his skin from the doom that is Permanent Appointment with the State. What became of him? No one knew until tonight.

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Reenactment of John rowing for his life

We assembled to all be part of a great game – THE game, and as it is well known, when you’re in the great game, you either win or you die. Or you win a lovely gift certificate to C’est Cheese, the establishment that hosted our reunion on this trivia night.

Some drink and know things. We supposed we were this sort before the wine was ordered and the questions began. Kristen, who had been studying with the Maesters all day in the library, had been brushing up on the history of our founding fathers and had gotten to 24, so when the announcer asked for number 25, she swore to all of the 7 gods and ate some poutine in disgust.

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Kristen eats an unfortunate meal while discussing GOT and preparing for her library shift

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Some drink and know things, but those people were not on our team

The three-eyed raven had joined team “The Velveeta Underground” for the evening, which made Kristen and Celeste happy because they figured his gift of foresight might come in handy on such an occasion. Midway through round 1, however, he ripped his mask off to reveal that it was, in fact, our dear friend Raquel. This was fortunate because 1) Raquel is quite good at trivia and knows many fictional characters’ addresses and 2) because Diane possesses a Lannister-callibre loathing of Bran.

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Diane was happy to see Raquel, or at least happy to no longer see Bran

Team “Ed Sheeran is the Prince Who Was Promised” was lagging to start with and no one took them very seriously as dangerous players, but they knew that all they had to do was bide their time while the competition slowly killed themselves off. This was done by means of a bag of weird tasting but oddly addicting – and likely poisoned – potato chips. You can’t eat just one, you must eat them all!

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The source of our undoing. We quickly became too ill to think.

With the competition all but annihilated, team “Ed Sheeran is the Prince Who Was Promised” had only to keep their heads on their shoulders and answer questions with a certain degree of competency. This was done most of the time…

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…with some exceptions

At the end of a grueling night, there were winners, and there were losers – those of which fully expect to be knocked off by the end of the week. However, should we survive, we expect to reunite again for another epic game of cheese and wine and trivia. We hope to see you there!

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Team “Ed Sheeran is The Prince Who Was Promised”

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They will not sit on the throne of victory long

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Raquel is already plotting their demise

 

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Full cast of characters: Team Walk-O-Rama

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Dear friends, I know that several words come to mind when you hear Walk-O-Rama and when you recall the many adventures chronicled on this site. Heroic, fearless, fun-loving. All true. Lazy is another. There, I said it. Adventures were often thwarted by heat, cold, humidity, precipitation, and the promise of delicious food. Even now, I sit here writing to you not of a walk in the physical sense, because that sounds exhausting, but of a mental stroll just taken down memory lane where I recalled my many great years with the wonderful staff at Stony Brook University Libraries.

I began after earning my Master’s degree in 2005 and was happy to have my first full-time job. My search committee assured me that I was not hired because I currently worked selling chocolate in a retail store and could potentially double as their supplier – or perhaps they indicated that that was the sole reason, I forget. To be on the safe side, I brought in a generous assortment when I started to try and win favor with my new friends.

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Definitely hired for the chocolate.

My first weeks were a little rough. I recall catching a student employee error in the Stacks, which angered her and caused her to leave. I felt guilty and thought for sure the other workers in Circulation would all hate me. Fortunately, I was quickly adopted by The Library Club, a group started and led by the very talented and creative Victor Santiago. This club really helped me develop as a person and a professional in so many ways, and it is my hope that I helped others do the same as one of the advisors. We did our best to share our love of libraries and information literacy by creating tutorials, educational events, blogs, web reviews, etc. and began a fundraising effort to send books to Africa. We took library students on field trips, including two ventures to Salem, MA where we held some pretty exciting scavenger hunts. They were good times.

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LC road trip to Salem

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Human Resources nightmare: losing a student employee on a field trip to find seals. It’s ok, we left an arrow so they could find us

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LC takes on NYPL

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LC takes on SPL

 

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Packing some books for Africa!

When I think of my time in Circulation, I remember the wonderful, wonderful people, and the terrific Halloween parties! I don’t mean to group these two together because they are equivalents – the people were definitely better –  but both are such vivid symbols in my mind of my days in the Main Stacks. It was great having a close-knit family environment to help me as I eased into my profession.  I don’t recall all of what I did those first few years, but all timesheets and paperwork seem to indicate that I was in fact present and actively doing something or other.

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This Bigfoot quality photo is a rare shot of me doing something very important in my work environment

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Arrrrrrren’t you feeling sentimental about these days? I know I am!

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Long hours spent on our epic haunted maze! I can still hear the screams of horror. It was perfect.

Gradually I began to learn more and take on additional responsibilities. I became a volunteer member of the virtual chat team and a selector for the Cinema Studies Department. I made Reader’s Advisory signs to try and get people to read our dusty books. I worked closely with our students, checking their accuracy, creating assignments, and introducing them to some pretty high-brow American experiences during our free time. When I felt I could do no more, I moved to a new role in the Central Reading Room.

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Teaching students how to do proper American things

During these next years, I worked more actively with the public and saw ways that I could create events to simultaneously entertain and educate our patrons. I created a few scavenger hunt with the help of some awesome colleagues, worked with the incredibly talented Arielle Hessler (and others) to create some library-themed board games that I think someone once played, and introduced other activities such as button making, Pi-Day, Banned Book Month contests, e-games, and more.

 

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Rebel volunteers who made Spy Hunt happen!

It is also during this time that I became active in Walk-O-Rama, thanks to Richie Feinberg (who began the group) and Celeste Hessler, who asked me to continue the activity after his retirement. These walks, as you may or may not have read in past entries, helped us all regain a small sense of childlike wonder as we left the comforts of our desks and began to bravely explore the campus grounds each week, searching for humor and meaning in all we saw. We found the remnants of an ancient feline civilization, tried our best (unsuccessfully) to make sense of the hospital floor plan, learned Ken is secretly an all-star baseball player, photobombed the President, and even buried our own time capsule somewhere we’ve long forgotten. And we ate. Mostly we ate. But it’s all good, because walking, talking, and breaking bread together is what creates bonds and keeps people happy as a team! I will always have a special place in my heart for Team Walk-O-Rama!

 

It was only fitting that WOR founder, Richie, should walk the time capsule to it's burial spot, wherever the heck that is

It was only fitting that WOR founder, Richie, should transport the time capsule to its burial spot, wherever the heck that is

Ken assures me this card will be worth big bucks someday

Ken assures me this card will be worth big bucks someday

President Stanley out with Walk-O-Rama

President Stanley happy to be out with Walk-O-Rama one day

I did other things I never dreamed I would do as a professional, or in any other capacity for that matter. I helped make several boats out of carboard and duct tape for the annual Roth Regatta and helped row two. To our surprise, none of them sank, and we even earned a trophy for coming in second place in the Speedster division during our first attempt. Go us! Staff all came out and cheered us on, and for days following I received small gifts and cards like a real hero who had done something wonderful. As someone who does not usually do things, I can tell you that it meant a lot in my little world to feel this way.

 

 

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Mentally preparing ourselves to sink upon contact with water

I have learned so much in my time here, both about myself and about my profession, and I have had the pleasure of meeting so many kind, creative, talented people who have made such a difference in my life, whether they realize it or not. Walk-O-Rama may be ended in some sense, but the energy that started it still remains. I hope you all will not forget to devote parts of your day, or even just your week to doing something that is brave –  even if only brave for you at your level, something silly, something adventurous, but mostly something fun. And take a friend – or several friends. Or drag someone you don’t particularly care for and force them to be your friend, because being adventurous together is awesome, and I have enjoyed my awesome adventure with you.

 

 

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A picture has no caption.

 

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Though holiday purists tend to celebrate July 4th – Independence Day – on, well, July 4th, we here at Walk-O-Rama felt that July 2nd, the official date of the legal separation between the US and Britain, was more appropriate for our celebratory parade around campus.  Though we could be doing so because we are just super patriotic, the reasoning most likely has more to do with the fact that 1) the actual holiday falls on a Saturday and 2) the group felt the need to walk off our big bagel brunch.

“The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance…” – John Adams

Years later, Walk-O-Rama was out making John Adams look all prophetic.  In the spirit of obtaining independence, we determined that we would seek out our deliverance from the workplace by fleeing our offices and setting out into this great land of ours.  Songs of patriotism filled the air, and as we approached the brand new, now totally open to the public Computer Science Building, the tune “This Land is Your Land” seemed of particular relevance.  We had determined that this building belonged to us too, and are hoping the summer months will give us enough time for our squatter’s rights to fully kick in.

As I went walking I saw a sign there
And on the sign it said “No Trespassing.”
But on the other side it didn’t say nothing,
That side was made for you and me.

John Adams gave us permission to celebrate early today

John Adams gave us permission to celebrate early today. Thanks, John! Adams. John Adams. Sir.

We decided the best course of action would be to sneak in the back way where no one would see us, and also because the first several doors were not nearly up to our standards.  Boy were we glad we held out. Though we were spotted sneaking in by several passersby (one of which we asked to photograph our entry), we did have the opportunity to enter through the grandest entrance of them all.

This building is your building This  building is my building. This building was made for you and me. But mostly me.

This building is your building This building is my building. This building was made for you and me. But mostly me.

This was not an approved Walk-O-Rama entrance

This was not an approved Walk-O-Rama entrance

Photo evidence of Team WOR preparing to take over our new building

Photo evidence of Team WOR preparing to take over our new building

The interior of the building, much to our surprise, was much nicer than it had been months ago when we trespassed in the facility before its completion.  Go figure. Beautiful lights illuminated the open spaces, “Stony Brook Red” furniture made every nook and cranny look inviting, and even the toilets (though not accented with comfy toilet paper) sparkled with a green tint of water that symbolized clean. Wow. It was amazing. The building of the future even included a pantry and an Area of Refuge.  Truly, this place was built with us in mind. Tears nearly came to our eyes, but then we remembered that it was a holiday. Our Founding Father’s had surely decreed that there would be no crying allowed on July 2nd, even out of excessive joy.

We will try dangling our lightbulbs from the ceiling in this dazzling, artsy manner later in the afternoon. (This is your official heads up about that, building manager John)

We will try dangling our light bulbs from the ceiling in this dazzling, artsy manner later in the afternoon. (This is your official heads up about that, building manager John)

Clean

Clean.

No modern place of The building designer had clearly worked on campus prior to this project

Finally, a building that gets us! An Area of Refuge in close range to the Pantry!

We approve of our new red furnishings

We approve of our new red furniture that seemed to inspire intelligent, thoughtful conversation

Staff Retreat 2016?

Staff Retreat 2016?

Prime Roth Regatta spectator seating

Prime Roth Regatta spectator seating

Peggy had no difficulty locating her new office and pulling decor from her bag like Mary Poppins. Really, that rug was tucked nicely in there

Peggy had no difficulty locating her new office and pulling decor from her bag like Mary Poppins. Really, that rug was tucked nicely in there

Child actors portray Kristen and Raquel as they watched Peggy unpack her office furnishings

Child actors portray Kristen and Raquel as they watched Peggy unpack her office furnishings

This walk of liberation inspired Peggy to shed the confines of the workforce as she determined to break free from the grind and pursue a more stress-free life filled with happiness, relaxation, yoga, paddle boarding, and ice cream sandwiches.  For real.  Sadly, this is to be her last Walk-O-Rama adventure.

As we wandered back to work, we swear we heard the remaining lyrics of “This Land is Your Land” coming from her direction, though she will surely deny all knowledge of it.

Nobody living can ever stop me,
As I go walking that freedom highway;
Nobody living can ever make me turn back
This land was made for you and me.

We will miss our friend and occasional Walk-O-Rama member, Peggy.  Go get your freedom and always remember to celebrate July 2, even if only as your final Walk-O-Rama adventure!

Peggy comes to the realization that this place is nice, but not for her

Peggy comes to the realization that this place is nice, but not for her

Farewell, Peggy! You will be missed.

Farewell, Peggy! You will be missed.

 

 

 

 

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This year, for our 3rd annual Harvest Feast, Walk-O-Rama learned that evites that mention the verb ‘walk’ actually deter most people from considering coming to your feast, or even acknowledging the receipt of the email entirely. This is understandable. It’s November.  Our bodies are now instinctively telling us to preserve energy to bulk up for the oncoming winter. Walking is in direct conflict with this goal.  Luckily, having caught this error in advance, we were still able send a follow-up email (or three) to attract the attention of just enough people to make this winter bulk up initiative successful, as many guests in attendance came bearing pots and platters full of delicious home-baked (or store-bought, it’s all good) edible delights.

Don't be alarmed, we won't actually be walking

Don’t be alarmed, we won’t actually be walking

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This should help us make it through the long winter months

Those who were unsure hit up the next table as well

Those who were unsure (most of us) hit up the next table as well

There is, as we found, a fine balance between filling yourself to a comfortable capacity and overloading your cheeks like a chipmunk who is uncertain if he will pass another acorn ever again.  I, for one, am quite sure I became the latter. Sherry’s delicious noodles were an early morning experiment.  When is that likely to happen again?? Probably never, so down the hatch it went. This seemed good at the time, but hibernation mode is surely setting in as I type. We ran into the usual pitfalls at this event – a traffic jam at the oven, clear spoons that were camouflaged into the table, and accusations of certain delicious entrees being seemingly downgraded to the second table where no one would eat them due to already overflowing plates.  All of these dilemmas were overcome, thank goodness, and a happy ending was in store for everyone!

It is unclear whether this happy diner finished her plate. What's under that napkin?!!

It is unclear whether this happy diner finished her plate. What’s under that napkin?!!

Ken nervously allows his food to be photographed. Don't worry, we're too full to steal it, for now.

Ken nervously allows his food to be photographed. Don’t worry, we’re too full to steal it – for now.

Luckily, Walk-O-Rama seems to attract many artistic types. In the time it took Kristen to locate a microwave to reheat her food, members had assembled to turn the Javits Room into one heck of a festively cheerful venue.

They were not edible, but we were happy to have them on the table anyway

They were not edible, but we were content to have them on the table anyway

Those without yards had fun spreading these leaves for others to rake up

Those without yards had fun spreading these faux leaves for others to rake up

Kathy can't believe anything on Bob's phone is more interesting than our decorations

Kathy can’t believe anything on Bob’s phone is more interesting than our decorations

Diane looking for more places to spread her festive leaves

Diane looking for more places to spread her festive leaves

Ken taught us all the importance of simple food identification. We'll get it by the fourth year!

Ken taught us all the importance of simple food identification. We’ll get it by the fourth year!

As is now the tradition, we were joined today by many old friends who have since left the Library. We were so happy to have more friendly people to mingle with, and happier still that they ate their share of food so we could not.

Two wallflowers hiding behind some table flowers

Two wallflowers hiding behind some table flowers

We're grateful for people like Stephanie! Don't be a stranger!

We’re grateful for people like Stephanie! Don’t be a stranger! We see you David!

A future seawolf!

A future seawolf!

We also continued the tradition of raising goods to donate to the Campus Food Pantry! Those who wish to bring in non-perishables can bring them to the Central Reading Room until 4pm on Wednesday.

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Someone is going to be very happy!!

Someone is going to be very happy!!

As if this grand feast was not already enough to make our day better, David later shared the good news that Sherry had given everyone permission to go home for the day. Fortunately for the Library, we were all too full by this time to walk out to our cars, and had to scuffle back to our offices to recover from the large meal anyway.

David exclaims that we all have Sherry's permission to go home!

David exclaims that we all have Sherry’s permission to go home!

Riley secretly wishes that we all will be responsible and stay at work anyway. Granted!

Riley secretly wishes that we all will be responsible and stay at work anyway. Granted!

Which was fine, because we just love being together!

Which was fine, because we just love being together!

The rain prevented anyone from having to do some post-feasting walking for Walk-O-Rama today, except poor Maria and all those from HSL who had a great distance to walk to get back to their home base.

We would like to thank everyone who made today possible. Whether you baked or purchased food (or just ate it), helped decorate or clean up, or just came to socialize and engage in nice conversation, you made today great and we are grateful for YOU! Have a great Thanksgiving holiday, and eat just enough that you feel motivated to join us the following week for some Walk-O-Rama adventures!!

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On Wednesday, October 22nd, Stony Brook University Libraries successfully pulled off another great photo scavenger hunt, thanks to some dedicated students! With some veteran hunters registering for the event, Kristen felt compelled to redesign large portions of the hunt, puzzles and all, to keep the sleuths on their toes.  New Library assets were highlighted, such as our recreational reading magazines, our vast map collection, and the Special Collections Department.  With so many complicated bonus point categories to take into consideration, we decided to outsource point tallying to a new committee of professional number crunchers.

This year's resident score keepers.

This year’s resident score keepers. Please see them for any disputes, as we are not accountable for any errors

New puzzles and games added a new twist to this year's hunt

New puzzles and games added a new twist to this year’s hunt

The first eager bunch arrived as soon as the event began. Team Reading Rainbow Road was the first to put the new clues and puzzles to the test.  They were very eager to play and quite determined to win! But you don’t have to take my word for it, just look at the competitive spirit that shines through in their happy faces!

Before some of us were fully awake, these guys were embarking on a challenging quest for Library glory!

Before some of us were fully awake, these guys were embarking on a quest for Library glory!

An image that captures their name choice and energy

An image that aptly symbolizes their name choice and energy

Team Reading Rainbow Road won 5 pts for best name, by choosing something everyone associates with information literacy. Great job, guys!

Team Reading Rainbow Road won 5 pts for best team name, by choosing something everyone associates with information literacy. Great job, guys!

Perhaps the happiest anyone has ever looked upon seeing the Chemistry Library

Perhaps the happiest anyone has ever looked upon seeing the Chemistry Library. Or maybe not, it is pretty nice.

Our point tallying committee later learned that this team spent an hour wandering about looking for the Ashley Shiff Preserve, one of the campus bonus point options. For this effort they got an extra bonus point, which might not make sense to everyone, but hey! they were tallied by a collection of Halloween props.

Amazing.

Amazing.

Later in the day another happy team arrived, Team SAC (play off of SBU’s Student Activities Center, or SAC, and also the initials of the team members’ first names).  These guys were great. Though they did not walk to the Ashley Shiff Preserve, they did photograph nearly everything else on their list.  Not only did they correctly solve all the clues for this hunt, but they also somehow managed to solve a puzzle from last year’s Spy Hunt that mysteriously found its way into one of their clue envelopes. That was weird, but kudos to you! Team SAC pulled off some great team photos and won two best photo categories.  They earned 89 points total, but all photo evidence shows that this was an effortless, enjoyable feat.

Team SAC had a number of great team photos. We loved this one with Wolfie!

Team SAC had a number of great team photos. We loved this one with Wolfie!

And our beloved Yoshi!

And our beloved Yoshi!

And what says great Library spirit better than big smiles despite the fact that we forced them out into the rain?

And what says great Library spirit better than big smiles despite the fact that we forced them out into the rain?

For their great effort, Team SAC won three season film passes that were kindly donated by the Staller Center for the Arts! Woohoo! Certificates of Awesomeness will soon be awarded, which we are quite certain will be found hanging on their walls next to their diplomas someday.

Three cheers for our three winners!

Three cheers for our three winners!

The Sherlock Cavaliers were next to join in the competition.  They were quick to solve our tricky riddle, taken from Tolkein’s classic The Hobbit, and soon found the magazine whose title spelled the answer.  Don’t worry, we were not offended by the speed in which you solved a clue that we spent hours creating.

Time, something this team needed little of to solve our riddles!

Time, something this team needed little of to solve our riddles!

The Sherlock Cavaliers mastered the rest of our clues with as much ease and really proved that they were sleuths to be reckoned with! We will have to try a little harder next year if we’re to stump the likes of them.

Piece of cake. Mmmm...cake.

Piece of cake. Mmmm…cake.

Well done!

Well done!

Even our new clues proved too elementary for these Sherlock Cavaliers

Even our new clues proved too elementary for these Sherlock Cavaliers

As with every year, the final challenge that must be completed in order to conquer our hunt is the finding of the frequently relocating Interlibrary Loan Office.  Hunters who were confident that they had seen it somewhere before were thrown for a loop when they learned it now has a new room number.  We might move it again for next year’s hunt – just to keep things interesting.

The only thing harder than finding ILL is finding the little star we've hidden there.

Who’s a Library Scavenger Hunt star? You are! Way to track down Interlibrary Loan to complete the hunt!

Thanks to all the participants of this year’s scavenger hunt! We apologize to those who learned that there was a conflicting event on campus and were unable to attend.  Next year we will plan more carefully and not leave it up to our Library fish to do the campus calendar research.  Ooh…that fish!

We love our library fish,  but he is totally lacking in most administrative skills

We love our library fish, but he is totally lacking in most administrative skills

We hope you all feel a little more at ease with our branches and services, and look forward to seeing you studying here in the future! Keep an eye out for ads for our next scavenger hunt, Spy Hunt, scheduled for next spring.  Also look for fun and educational events, workshops, and more on the Library’s homepage! Until then, don’t forget to Get Your Read On!

The Library's new board game, Where's Wolfie, was added to our hunt

The Library’s new board game, Where’s Wolfie, was added to our hunt

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Today we welcomed Ken back to Walk-O-Rama on his first day back on the job since returning from Paradise. We don’t know why he chose to return from such an aptly named place, but we sure are glad he did.  It was nice being grounded by a sensible decision maker or a change, after weeks of walks so filled with chaos and lawlessness that they could not be safely chronicled in this blog.  His return warranted a Welcome Back fiesta, which could mean only one thing.  Burritos.

We welcomed Ken back in the office today in traditional Stony Brook fashion

We welcomed Ken back in the office today in traditional Walk-O-Rama fashion

Despite the fact that it was National Cheesecake Day, we were all good and avoided sweets, sticking to more nutritious lunch choices such as salad, some other kind of salad, and dishes doused in cheesy sauce.  Go us.  Eventually, as must always be the case, we had to up-heave our now sleepy selves from our seats and make the long trek back to work.

Our now lazy, unfocused minds touched on many subjects while trying to avoid abandoning our goal of returning to the library and just lying down in the grass for a quick nap instead. Perhaps an hour or two would hit the spot.  NYC scavenger hunts were planned, as were future trips to the zoo. A story of questionable veracity was told about a leaf bag that many moths mistook for a large lady moth who demanded their affection. Apparently this event was confirmed by two eye witnesses in our party.

At this point in our chatter, it was proposed the the structure of our lunch breaks be forever changed as we know it.  Instead, time allotted for eating would be granted for siesta purposes, which Ken concurred would be in our legal right as state workers. In his sleepiness he expanded on this opinion with a falsehood, claiming we were allowed to do anything we wanted during our lunch hour.  The following is a brief, non-exhaustive list of things we would likely not be permitted to do during our lunch hour:

  • Feed Skittles to penquins
  • Host a llama beauty pageant
  • Play soccer with our cars in the South P lot
  • Attempt scaling the Simon Center wall using office supplies we believe will provide suction
  • Burn down our workplace to provide fertile grounds for a better workplace
  • Provide a zero credit course to teach the Canada Geese to speak Canadian English

With that being said, I will now join the rest in my party by embracing the right bestowed upon me by Ken to siesta on state time. We hope you will join us next week when we continue testing the limits of what the university will and will not allow us to do on our lunch breaks.

Walk-O-Rama, 3pm

Walk-O-Rama, 3pm

 

 

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The triumph of this week’s adventure nearly trumped the legendary conquest achieved by Arielle last week when she successfully ate a Green Cactus burrito and was not forced to abandon her meal due to any ridiculously spicy hot sauce or spices.  Go Arielle!  Since Ken and Kristen were the only two up for escaping the office today (which is just weird people – I mean come on!), they decided their odds at finding enough bikes to ride in the campus bike share stalls would be slightly better than last week’s failed attempt.  And they were right! Ken even had a route in mind! For over a  year now he has been talking about some mysterious clearing that he once stumbled upon, and he was set on finding it and showing it to all who were dumb enough to follow (Kristen).  It was bound to be an adventure unlike any other! Or at least a good way to burn a few calories, which is a good thing.

Go Arielle! What a delicious achievement!

Go Arielle! What a delicious achievement!

Having swiped their cards at the pay station, they were forced to pretend to read many rules, instructions, terms and agreements, and other such nonsense that they simply agreed to so the machine would release its death grip on the bicycles and allow them to begin having some major fun.  This major fun was found in the form of Kristen nearly crashing because she wanted to take pictures in motion and Ken narrowly avoiding wiping out when he could not figure out how to switch gears.  All initial difficulties being soon after overcome, the two headed out to find this legendary clearing in the nearby forest.

Yay! We finally scored some bikes!

Yay! We finally scored some bikes!

Kristen quickly learns that she is not as skilled as that boy she saw texting while riding last week

Kristen quickly learns that she is not as skilled as that boy she saw texting while riding last week

Ken grows tired of waiting for the green light to give him permission to take the bike and attempts brute strength

Ken grows tired of waiting for the green light to give him permission to take the bike and attempts brute strength

Moments into the ride, both bikers were quickly realizing that biking is BS, with the exception of those downhill slopes that proved to be few and far between.  Cursing happened.  Before too long, a barely visible trail was in view, and all signs of civilization were quickly left in their dust.

This is when Kristen learned for sure that Ken did not know where this clearing was located.  In fact she’s pretty sure he dreamt it. While intoxicated. Turns left, right, and in a u shape were made at every opportunity, until the rugged trail that they were following was little more than a mere parting of a few shrubs where some deer had likely once passed.  A few familiar signs were spotted along the way that helped guide them on their journey, which were particularly helpful for the return trip when they were racing back to try and beat the clock to avoid paying another four bucks.

 

Dead end #1

Dead end #1

Proof that others have been lost here as well

Proof that others have been lost here as well

Adding our mark

Adding our mark

We still fit in some walking on this exhausting outing

We still fit in some walking on this exhausting outing

A Lite to help guide our way

A Lite to help guide our way

Backtracking at dead end #2

Backtracking at dead end #2

We briefly considered abandoning our bikes and taking a cab back

We briefly considered abandoning our bikes and taking a cab back

The ultimate dead end that made us quit

The ultimate dead end that made us quit

The pair could not contain their excitement when they were soon close enough to the forest perimeter to hear traffic. Though the rain clouds above gave Kristen hope that a downpour might give her a legitimate excuse to be wet so she would not have to admit to just being super sweaty, precipitation held back for the remainder of this rigorous adventure.  The cooler breeze felt while gliding downhill did do its part to refresh the riders, in much the same way the intense air blowing cycle works to dry cars in a car wash, so they could not complain.

They made it back with mere minutes to spare, but to their dismay they could not figure out how to properly return the bikes that they now never wanted to set eyes on again.  A kind stranger shared the secret method of making them lock, bringing an official end to this week’s adventure.  Never had refueling been more of an emergency than it was after this particular calorie burn, so operation carb fest was initiated to recoup all losses.

Carb Fest 2014

Carb Fest 2014

Join us next week when we will not do this again.

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