Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Gratitude's my attitude

Although this post may come a couple days late, better now than never, I think. I'm finally done with summer session - Ciao alle lezioni d'Italiano e Marco, il mio professore migliore - and I've been spending my downtime setting up my new digs --post to come soon with pictures-- and reading Audrey Niffenegger's The Time Traveler's Wife, which I highly recommend even though I'm only halfway through it. Nevertheless, I fully intend on finishing it in the next couple of days. I'm falling in love with Henry, despite the fact that I'm struggling with the philosophical aspect of his time traveling and relating to Clare's emotional struggles with his disappearances as well.

My mom's birthday was on Sunday, and I was worried that she wouldn't receive her birthday card on time. Due to dealing with the move all week, I had even written it down on my planner to drop the card down the mail chute, but it didn't dawn upon me until Thursday afternoon, when everything had settled. Of course, I still had boxes to unpack and numerous objects to label and organize in their respective drawers and shelves, but it wasn't an option to put it off any longer. I owed my mom a great big thank you for everything she's done for me throughout the years, and such a feat would end up in a tearful bout if I even attempted to express myself verbally, so I picked out a beautiful card and wrote a genuine message for her to enjoy on her special day.

Which brings me to my biggest point: what happened to correspondence? There's so much intimacy and heartfelt emotion, time, effort, and thought behind the written word that is now cheapened by the immediacy of e-mails and text messages. While these mediums are completely capable of transporting heartfelt messages of appreciation or gratitude, they aren't being used as such. Perky Girl and I were talking about the romance behind it all, someone talking the time to sit down with his pen and paper and a message fueled by his love for another chronicled for the receiver's enjoyment to serve as a constant reminder of that moment in time combined with those particular emotions. Which explains partly why I don't skimp when it comes to birthday cards or thank you notes and have an entire box filled with stationery for this purpose.

Nevertheless, I sent her card out in hopes that she wouldn't receive it too late, and she called me on Sunday to thank me for the texts, phone calls, and card all for the purpose of her day - yes, I used all mediums of modern communication - and we had an in-depth conversation about the contents of my message. Of course, I started to get teary-eyed once she told me that my card made her cry, but I meant every word. I find it easier to express myself on paper than verbally, and I'm always glad to hear that people who receive my messages appreciate them as intended.

But my mom's birthday card kind of had the message that a mother helps you take your first steps and picks you up when you fall, goes through all your firsts with you, basically chronicling the parts of life that are important to share with your mother and through it all, she's there to experience it with you, and in my message I wrote to her that I'm proud and grateful to have her in my life to share my life with, and with graduation and the beginning of my adult life approaching, I wrote that I was excited and anticipating sharing the future with her. It makes me happy and sad to think that work, marriage, and kids are in the future for me because I know that marriage will mean the start of mine and my husband's life together and the snippet-action of my dependence to my parents. Yes, I think it's bittersweet --I always cry at a particular part of weddings, when the father gives away the bride to the groom, because I imagine how hard it will be for me to accept that I am letting go of my parents and allowing the simultaneous occurrence of our familial separation and my marital unity with my husband. Call me attached, but it's hard to cut the cord! I absolutely love my parents and try to talk with my dad at least every other day. He knows that I get busy with school and teaching and living 300 miles away from them, and my mom works practically nonstop to provide for us, so it's nice to have them as my outlet for sounding off when I can't find anyone else to relate to. Not that that's a problem at all, my girls are always here for me and I usually go to them when I've got a problem. But there are times when you've got to turn to your parents for their guidance because you know it's backed by an experienced opinion.

All in all, I'd just like to state how much I love my life - my family, my friends, all the experiences that come from school, teaching, and everyone that I happen to run into in this crazy world - bring it on, I tell the Big Man Upstairs. There's nothing He doesn't give us that he knows we can't handle, and I am a firm believer that everything, everything happens for a reason. And if it isn't happening now, it may happen tomorrow, it may never happen - just know that it'll only happen when it's meant to.

Which begs the question: have you thanked someone for being a part of your life today?

Friday, August 7, 2009

Who says you can't go home?

This is who greeted me at the door when I walked into my house today, along with my dad. :) Peyton is just a ball of fun, and I was really excited to see my puppy nephew because I missed him so much! He's gotten so much bigger, but I still see the baby in him. I'm glad he's come to the age where he can recognize people -- his relatives -- and greet them like he hasn't seen them in forever. Whenever my mom comes home from work at 8 in the morning, he'll act like he hasn't seen in her ages, when really it'd only been a couple of hours. He's such a great dog. He's even got his own photo frame on our mantle, at the request of our Mom. Mind you, Abby and I don't have individual photo frames -- we share them while the family dog is center and on his own. Make of it what you will.

I laughed to myself when my dad saw me walk in the door and said, "You're alone?" because my family was expecting Perky Girl to come along. It was interesting to see the house virtually spotless -- our house is pretty homey, and with everyone's busy schedules, it's usually got the appearance of being lived in. You know, mail piling somewhat on the kitchen table, backpacks and jackets strewn on chairs, etc. But with the expectation of a guest's arrival, Mom was quick to pick up and tidy the house.

It's great to have a long weekend to recharge for the big move to 413 and the last week of Summer II. Buon weekend, tutti!

Run-in with Jesus feet

I've come under the belief that when life deals out an awkward situation, what better way than to post it on Cheryl's new blog?

Here's what happened to me this morning:

I make my way to my study hours at the Life Science Library, which is hidden inside the UT Tower, and it's a daily routine for me. Wake up at around 8.30a, get dressed, have breakfast, get to campus, run through last minute Italian exercises before class at 11.30a. It's usually as simple as that, and I never have any run-ins with anyone since campus is so scarce during Summer sessions.

Well, this morning I had heard The Proclaimers' "(I'm Gonna Be) 500 Miles" on the radio, which is a perfect wake-up morning song, right? So I'm in a pretty peppy mood, and I was ready to take care of business.

With my newspaper, Slim Fast, and a couple things I picked up from the Campus Computer Store in hand, I make my way up the marbled stairs a little more briskly this morning, but I still maintain my firm eye contact with their ascension. Stairs are pretty tricky and will get you if the mood strikes them right, e.g. when you're having a great start to a new day.

I finally make it up the two, long flights to the entrance of the Life Science Library, head still down, simultaneously glancing at today's headlines and admiring my new purchases when I see a pair of Jesus-sandaled feet - except they were really in a simple pair of Rainbow flip flops. Nevertheless, they were men's shoes.

Threshold situations are always difficult for me. Yes, there are several openings that these metal detectors provide for access in and out of the premises, but there's usually a particular one human nature tends to use. More or less, to the left if entering (female); to the right if exiting (male).

Because I am a courteous being and do not wholeheartedly enforce chivalry, (with the exception of door-opening/holding, which I oftentimes reciprocate) I inched my feet towards the other entrance as the pair of Jesus feet seemed to do the same. When I saw his hesitation, I thought, Oh, well I guess I can go through my original threshold.


So there we stood, nonverbally miscommunicating our intentions with our feet, and finally I followed through on my second choice threshold as he couldn't help but chuckle to himself as he watched me shuffle back and forth. An awkward tango, if you will. I uncomfortably squealed in a hushed tone (because this is a library) "Sorry!" and scurried off in embarrassment.

Mind you, it's already 100+ degrees out, I'm not fully dressed, I'm practically melting, I'm puffy from last night's happy hour shenanigans -- and I look up to see quite an attractive face to match those Jesus feet and that charming chuckle of his.

Needless to say, it didn't hurt that the combination of Jesus feet + face + and hearty, genuine, endearing chuckle crossed my path today. But it was definitely awkward.

"What? I'm like a lollipop..."

Thursday nights with these concotions help to alleviate the stress of the week that's passed and sets up a much-needed and well-deserved start to the weekend.

What better than to sip your cares away with a 32 oz. margarita?
Good company, strong drinks, and great atmosphere equate to a fun night.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Who's with me?

I was surfing the web and was thinking about how volunteering enriched my high school years, and I wondered why I hadn't been keeping up with it. Well, it got to me, so I signed up for not one, but two volunteer memberships at Hands on North Texas and Hands on Central Texas.

I clicked on few links, filled in couple of blanks here and there, and found myself searching for volunteering opportunities for this upcoming semester. Yes, I know I'll have a full load with a 15-hour term and 45+ field hours of teaching at the high school level, but I want to spend a couple of my weekends giving my time to those who are really in need. I'm really interested in getting involved with 1 hour for kids and the United Way's Fall Day of Caring.

So, who's with me?

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Daily tiramisu courtesy of the B52's

Plug that Product!

Had a pretty good morning, with the exception of the nasty Starbucks encounter.

For some reason, people have been giving me the stink-eye today. And I honestly can't bring myself to believe that's how their faces really look. I know I have a disgruntled expression when I'm concentrating, thinking hard, or watching television, but unless the sun is glaring me in the eye, I'm either big-ass smiling my face off or laughing. I'm not one to give a stink-eye unless it is truly deserved.

I walked myself over to Starbucks to get myself an iced Americano because my eyes were beginning to grow heavy with fatigue, and as I was preparing my caffeinated concoction my liking, an impatient, balding and portly man (I will make these judgments because I feel justified after the way he treated me.) stood at a discomforting proximity. I felt his aura rushing me to stir and replace the lid on my cup, so I looked over and said, "Sorry." I guess this wasn't enough to settle the man's rage. His reaction was an expression that lit my fuse as it said, "Hurry up, bitch. I can't wait all day."

I'm sorry little man, but you can wait patiently as I attempt to pop this plastic lid back on. Thank GOD Starbucks changed the lids from the previously stiff and uncooperative ones they used to top their iced cups. Nevertheless, I moved as quickly as I could and let him do his stupid business, but I wasn't happy.

Perky and I had lunch @ Chipotle, where I tried the crunchy tacos.

Honestly, what have I been doing with my life? The photo above shows the last of my three, overflowing delicacies. I don't know if I'll ever go back to my usual chicken bowl. Goodbye, burrito; hello crunchy-wunchy tacos! Seriously, try them immediately.

I had to stop by to pick up some body wash and face wash. I couldn't resist making my way over to the Beauty Store Salon and Spa, and I came across some of the best Burt's Bees I'd ever picked up.

The Soap Bark and Chamomile Deep Cleaning Cream is perfect for my combination skin. Massage a dime sized squeeze onto your skin gently for about two minutes, and you'll start to feel this wonderful tingling sensation that shows you it's really working down in your pores. Rinse with cool water for an intensified tingle that will last about 10 minutes after you've dried and moisturized your skin. $8

Burt's Bees Fabulously Fresh Peppermint and Rosemary Bodywash is an excellent tiramisu for anyone who's got a case of the Mondays, or any day for that matter. I love all things peppermint, especially bath and body products, so this was a no-brainer for me. This bodywash lathers up and when loofahed all over, just makes you feel uber clean and fabulously fresh. For you morning shower-takers, this is a great way to start the day. For those who prefer night showers, the herbal essence of this product is sure to lull the stress from the daily grind right out of your system to prepare you for a peaceful night's sleep. $8

It had to be you...

Got a lot of work done last night but planned on grabbing breakfast before heading to campus for class, so I turned in pretty early. The classical music radio station was playing good sleep music, and thank goodness Perky Girl remembered to put on the sleep timer, because the morning before it was impossible to get out of bed with the soothing sounds of said music. But I woke up at exactly 5:30am with the inevitable urge to pee, so I went.

Little did I know I would be accompanied by a young adult cockroach.

I didn't have any shoes on to exterminate the bugger, so I just scurried myself out the bathroom and leapt back in bed. It was a restless hour and half till the alarms went off.

Perky pressed the snooze button about 5 times. Both of us still awoke quite drowsily.

I admit, it's difficult to get up at 7am every morning. In fact, it's the antithesis of my favorite thing to do, which is sleep/sleep in.

We groaned to each other for a little while about placing a to-go order of breakfast tacos at one of our favorite Tex-Mex local joints, Trudy's, until Monica saw the little friend that made a guest appearance of my early morning loo visit.

That's what really woke us up.

"Oh my God... Oh my God, what is that?" Perky asks, panicked.
"That's a cockroach. It came to see me while I was peeing this morning." I say with an air of nonchalance.
"It---it's on my bed. Ugh, it's on my bed!!"
"I didn't know what to do when I saw it this morning. I didn't have any shoes on!"

--Perky leaps from the pillow side of her bed to the foot--

--I point at her foot, noticing the unpolished toenail she'd been meaning to attend to for the past month--

"I see it!," I say, pointing at the toe.
"WHAT?!?! WHERE?!?!" Perky yelps, cannonballing herself onto the edge of the bed where she began to flail her legs convulsively, as if to repel the pest.

--Here, I couldn't help but laugh uncontrollably, knowing that there wasn't a cockroach near her and that she was reacting hysterically--

"No," I said inbetween chuckles, "I just noticed that toenail you'd been complaining about being unpainted."

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Kickin' Butt and taking names

Perky Girl and I spent another night studying at Kick Butt Coffee tonight, and little did we know that they had a great happy hour and live music during the week. We had the pleasure of seeing performances from D.B. Martin and Movin' Target.

"We're at -- we're a real organization."

If you've never been to Austin, this is what it's all about. Good music, good company, laid back atmosphere, and taking care of business while you're at it. It's just that we started to feel it and discovered it 4 years a little late. But hey, better late than never, yes?

"Now you girls aren't really doing homework, now are you?"
"Look at 'em typin'! These girls are going about 100 miles an hour!"

It had to be you...

On our way to class this morning, Perky Girl and I were walking from the parking garage when we saw a girl who was practically in her workout skivvies -- athletic shorts and sports bra -- walking her dog. Well, I should say her dog was walking her because he was about 2 feet ahead just pulling her arm off. A stranger crossed the dog's path and s/he was pretty determined to sniff because he pulled his owner with such fervor that all she could do was maintain a white-knuckle grip on the leash and passively groan, "Noooooo..."

We couldn't help but laugh.

How could we not? We both know that isn't how one controls a dog. You must be the master, little grasshopper, and if you let him pull without disciplinary action the first time, it definitely won't be the last.

Needless to say, if she had spent more time paying attention to the needs of her dog - being disciplined appropriately and walked often so as not to take advantage of such outings - perhaps she would have been able to enjoy the sweet summer breeze this morning and not have to worry about being dragged down Rio Grande.

Monday, August 3, 2009

It's August?

It was an absolutely beautiful August day today.

Sunny with a light breeze, perfect for laying by the pool.

But alas, I was forced to study for my Italian test tomorrow.

Question: Where the hell was July?

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Food for thought

Perky Girl and I decided it was time to get some work done at a coffee shop. I'd heard good things about Kick Butt Coffee, and they'd just opened a new location nearer to us, so I suggested we check it out.

Little did we know we'd absolutely fall in love with the atmosphere, music, coffee, and staff. We're planning on moving in immediately. But she started up her new blog, which is destined for greatness, and we'd gotten absolutely little to no work done, but we felt accomplished after finding our new study scene.

We felt the caffeine jitters set in - Perky had the daily brew, Bohemia, and I had a large iced americano with four shots of espresso - but it was a great place to chat it up and hang. Looking forward to our next trip back!

Blogger additions!

Adding another minion to the blogger movement!
Satisfy your sweet tooth and follow Perky Girl!

Also, check out Cheryl's new blog, Awkward Anecdote!

Daily tiramisu courtesy of SU

The Flight Attendant

My flight was being served by an obviously gay flight attendant, who seemed to put everyone in a good mood as he served us food and drinks.

As the plane prepared to descend, he came swishing down the aisle and told us that "Captain Marvey has asked me to announce that he'll be landing the big scary plane shortly, so lovely people, if you could just put your trays up, that would be super."

On his trip back up the aisle, he noticed this well-dressed and rather Arabic looking woman hadn't moved a muscle. "Perhaps you didn't hear me over those big brute engines but I asked you to raise your trazy-poo, so the main man can pitty-pat us on
the ground."

She calmly turned her head and said, "In my country, I am called a Princess and I take orders from no one."

To which (I swear) the flight attendant replied, without missing a beat, "Well, sweet- cheeks, in my
 country I'm called a Queen, so I outrank you.

Tray-up, Bitch."

Thursday, July 30, 2009

The road goes on forever, and the party never ends...

I never thought this week would end till it's the day after hump day, and everyone is well aware that Thursday - Sunday go by waaaaaay too quickly.

Today/tomorrow we're saying goodbye to 403. It's bittersweet. Quirky and Perky and I have lived through some pretty crazy nights in that place. I'd attempt to list off all of them, but only a few come to mind, and even stating them doesn't do it much justice. But here I go. (I will probably add as things come to mind.)

1. Five Party Night
2. Perky's and my 21st birthday extravaganza, penguin suit included
3. Fourth roommates
4. Quirky finding Red Lipstick Koala's photo of us tucked in her car visor (driver's side)
5. "Safe house"
6. Fifa Soccer @ 402
  • "Ew. Double ew."
7. Numerous game nights, one of which included Suck and Blow
8. Lighting up our balcony with the best icon EVER
9. Hanging out on the roof with strangers fishing for a tree limb off someone elses' balcony
10. Quirky and Perky's experience with the Guadalupe Tornado before driving to Dallas to leave for Breckenridge
11. Halloween night and being under 21 - "No one cares what purse you'll be wearing."
12. Late-nite shenanigans...
  • F: Get the fuck out!
  • Q: ...but it's my room...
  • F: And lock the door on your way out!
13. Watching post-6th street via E-bus fights from the balcony
14. Witnessing the fat Sigma Chi literally roll over some dude
15. The homeless lady passed out in front of the Tri Delt house
16. "Dude, don't call it that" night
17. The night that shall forever be forgotten, in which Q was "still drunk... and it's NOON."
18. Laughing as people drove the wrong way on BOTH the streets that intersected at our apt.
19. Secret Santa parties with the girls
20. Monday night drunkards - featuring Quirky and me - and a visit to Sun Hing, a local Chinese joint
21. 403 PALS dinner nights (fajitas, spaghetti)
22. Fratter's 21st = epic fail; he and Quirky became blood bros. that night
23. "Get off my best friend!"
24. Inter-wing fraternization
25. Ken's midnight donut runs
26. Perky's missing/misplaced cheese
  • "who moved my cheese??"
  • "i know it was right here!"
  • "this is not my cheese!"
  • "i just opened a new package!!"
27. Constantly baking for neighbors
  • "...did he even notice we brought him cupcakes??"
28. Quirky's phonecalls to home
  • "his name is paul. yes, paul. PAUL.
  • .... P-A-U-L!"
  • "...are you talking about the cacti??"
29. The guy who took his shirt off on command & came up to party with us
30. "Little Miss Sunshine" & arguing about the DVD player
  • "I have it under control, just tell me which remote goes to the DVD player!"
31. True Blood Sundays
32. "These girls... they're smart, bro. And quick. They don't let anything get past ya."
33. The week the room smelled of peppermint lotion
34. Reverse knocking/noise complaints
35. Numerous times the doormat was stolen
36. The ominous "Grey Lady"
37. Narrating vending machine fratters
38. Narrating fights going on outside
  • "Guys, if anything gets too rowdy... the shorts are coming off."
39. Pulling up our bathroom door in order to close it
40. The generation of 403 PALS
41. Sleeping on the floor our last night @ 403 as 403 PALS
  • Q: Okay, don't get wrapped up in these cords over here...
  • M: Just hope I don't end up next to you...
  • Q: That's why I'm making this barricade of technology!

Hopefully I can add more with Perky and Quirky's input.

And I know nothing on this list makes much sense to anyone outside of our college clique, but take from it what you will. It's been a crazy ride.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Never listless

I have an addiction. I'm a chronic list-maker. 3M could make a living off of me. In fact, I have a stack of Post-its sitting here next to me. I love free Post-its just like the next obsessive compulsive Type-A personality. Lined, blank, bright neons, subtle pastels, kooky shapes, seasonal -- I couldn't live without them. If it's something that needs to be done, bought, seen, telephoned, e-mailed, Googled - what have you - you can bet it's written down either on a Post-it or in my planner and wall calendar.

This is my current week. Mind you, it's only Tuesday.
And I'm currently taking only one class and preparing to move,
so this is nothing compared to a 15-hour semester with student teaching.
I'll make sure to remember to take a snapshot
of what kind of mess that looks like during a hell week...

And yes, I know that life happens while you're making plans. And the 80/20 rule that 80% of whatever you write down and plan to do, only 20% actually gets done... but the instant gratification that comes from being able to check or cross something off a list gives me such exhilaration. I promise I'm not Joy (Cameron Diaz) of What Happens in Vegas, guilty as being one who makes plans to make plans... at least not all the time. I just like to have little reminders of what's to be done and what's upcoming.

If you think this is bad, you don't want to know how much trouble I cause when it's just me and my label maker. (Thanks to Crafty Girl for that one! :) )

Monday, July 27, 2009

Man, I love college...

and I love drinkin'...

Do I really have to graduate?
Or can I just stay here for the rest of my life?

Food for thought

If you haven't had this type of ready-made Texas Toast, go out to your local grocer, run to the frozen foods aisle, and pick up a box of this magnificence for $2.50. The girls (Perky & Quirky) and I made a quick spaghetti dinner and had to have something garlicky to go with! It's best if broiled for about 2 minutes or so - makes the edges get nice and crusty with the soft, buttery center still so.

But what bothers me that the New York brand makes the best Texas Toast... how is that so?

It had to be you...

I absolutely love my Italian professor this session. And professors particularly in this area are hard to find. I've been lucky to have had two great ones out of four - funny to note that they're the ones who weren't native-born Italians. Just born-again Italians, well, in Professore's case, one who was raised and lived there till he was 18. He's spunky with a sense of humor that translates across the language barrier. He taps his pencil among the books and pieces of paper scattered atop his desk in a Jimmy Fallon-esque manner when he's thinking about what to tell us next. He bumps into trashcans during grammar lessons and pardons himself to the inanimate object. "Ah, scusi..." Simply put, he's awesome.

Today during lecture, he asked us to turn to our books so we could review new vocabulary. As he flipped the pages to his book, the sweep of his fingers caused the entire book to flip across his desk, and a couple slips of paper flew out.

A magnified playback of this would reveal the humiliating part of the story.

"Oh my God," he said, and as he picked it up, he showed us what he held. "...Free Frosty, anyone??"

Yep, my 50+ year-old professor kept coupons for Wendy's irresistible flash-frozen treats between the pages of an intermediate Italian textbook. Multiple coupons, to note.

Naturally, we all laughed together and Professore transitioned smoothly into the vocabulary review.

Needless to say, I'm glad it wasn't me. Although now I've got a craving for a Frosty.

Daily tiramisu courtesy of SU

**Correction to creator: My native homeland is spelled Philippines. Kthxbai.

Food for thought

Does no breakfast this morning make up for two slices of cheesecake last night? Perhaps sitting in the sun will burn those calories away...

Sunday, July 26, 2009

"Red light..."

The lyrics of this song bring back good memories of senior year.

Pompous Ass
, I hope you're doing well, wherever you may be. Every now and then when I stop at a red light, I think of you and smile. Man, that was fun.

It had to be you...

There are several "sucks to be that guy/gal" occurrences that happen around campus, and where better to chronicle these events than here? I figure you guys would enjoy a quick laugh at the expense of others like I do.

Perky Girl and I are always up for catching other people tripping, spilling things, or dropping things when we're out for a giggle, even if it's one of us experiencing the stumble.

Last fall, Perky and I would meet on the lawn to chat for a couple of minutes in between our respective lectures. Here, the lawn on South Mall is a gathering place to do just that, or whatever you want to do - nap, eat lunch, throw around a frisbee, yoga-cise, study, or people-watch/eavesdrop.

The November day was one for the books - sunny with a light, crisp autumn breeze that carried frail leaves along with it. We went about our daily chat, whining about classes and gossiping about last night's episode of whatever reality show we were hooked on that season. The breeze picked up for a quick minute, and a guy who happened to sit a few feet next to us to enjoy his lunch was an instant victim.

We couldn't help but giggle uncontrollably as his shirt remained in its upright position, long after the wind had settled. Perky caught a snapshot of this incident, and the funniest part was that he didn't react at all. He just kept savoring each bite of his meal. His backside stayed exposed, for everyone north of his south side to see, and we went to class thinking about him and laughing to ourselves.

Needless to say, I'm glad it wasn't me.

Daily tiramisu courtesy of PG

"Can I show you something that's sure to make you smile?"
- Perky Girl

What's in it for me?

In an age when status updates and tweets overtake in-person conversations, handwritten letters and phone calls to old friends, what’s the use in attempting to reconnect with old friends when you already know what they’re up to?

(Yeah, there was a thing called correspondence before e-mail and texts. People actually used all their fingers to write messages back and forth, not just their thumbs. In the olden days, there was even a pony involved in the exchange process. )

Our curiosities have become so easy to feed with the abundance of accessibility yet lack of proximity.

It’s hard to face, but there’s really no use in striking up a conversation with someone you knew a couple years back when they’re already telling you without asking. So while my Facebook newsfeed continues to flood with engagement announcements, wedding photo albums, and “we’re expecting!” notices, I take to stalking (who doesn’t?) and floodgates of emotion break the levees.

“Wait… s/he's getting married/is engaged/preggers?”

Jake Ryan: Married???

(from behind front door)
Long Duk Dong: MARRIED! JEEZ!

The first step to overcoming a problem is admitting it, so here goes: I’m uneasy with the inevitable fact that people I know are getting married and having babies - "growing up", if you will. It takes me a while to process, and I'm pretty sure the entire range of human emotion shows up on my face - if my reaction were seen live or on tape. And anyone who knows me knows that if I'm silent, they can hear volumes of my thoughts via my facial expressions. For that, I have no filter.

Oh, here’s another fun fact: I’m 21.

People I went to high school with are reaching back to their old cliques and recruiting former members as each others' best men/MOHs. When I hear about this, I start to question motives.
  • Does he know your fiance’s name? First and last?
  • Has s/he been around to see your relationship blossom enough to speak of your unity in genuine support?
  • Do you really think s/he honestly wants to be your BM/MOH?
  • Or are you asking because your OCD compels your bridesmaids and groomsmen be equal in number? Is it just about the symmetry? Superstition with evens and odds?

I’ve come across a couple of quizzes and articles from various women’s magazines and websites that provide the right questions to ask one’s self when choosing players to bat for your team on your wedding day. They’re similar to the ones mentioned above, as it’s only common sense to have a reasonable amount of proximity to the bride and the groom if you’re going to be part of the procession. At least in the game of participating in the wedding party, no one’s ashamed of being picked last… or not at all. Some would rather spare the expense - financially and emotionally speaking.

Maybe I’m speaking for myself.

I decided to have a rant-fest after the notices began to appear more frequently. I’m talking every other week, at times in multiple increments on the weekends. Who else to have such discourse with but one of my own former high school clique-mates/beloved friend? Cue Cheryl.

And she didn’t let me down. Of course she had something brilliant to add.
"I don't understand why people don't have more patience, with themselves and with others."

It's so true. And really, that's what it boils down to -- everyone trying to grow up so fast and attempting to capture this "American dream" - whatever that may be. Whether it be to have what their parents have, to have more than their parents ever gave them, or simply to have and to hold.

I just feel like we're at the age where we're supposed to do things for ourselves, not have any major connections or ties that keep us from achieving our innermost desires and aspirations -- yet some are choosing the settle down-get married-have 2.5 kids-pay the mortgage-work the 9-5-feed the dog-Charlie, take out the trash before I have to ask again route.

Not to say that I’ll never have that life - because my career choice and future plans say all systems go - but I’ve got a long way to go until then. I fully intend on traveling and enjoying me, myself, and I for a good amount of time. I want to enjoy time out with my friends without having to worry about finding a babysitter. I need the ability to be spontaneous without it affecting someone else negatively.

I find comfort in not knowing where the road leads. And if I take a chance on a hitchhiker one day, maybe going out on a limb will be the best mistake I make. Gaining a road buddy couldn’t hurt. If love and I happen to have a head on collision at some point, it’s all part of the ride.

(Save the serial killer reality displaced on hitchhikers, all right? I've actually been to a place where hitchhiking is a safe and common way of getting around: Kauai, Hawaii. And if your paranoia can't seem fathom that, just take the metaphor for what it is.)

Road trips are bound for memory making and story telling. And everyone’s got a story to tell; we’ve just got different ways revealing them. I’m willing to wait for someone who captures my attention as they recount their experiences. Even if it means having to run on empty to find the next man who’s flashing a thumbs-up - a fool proof sign of a genuine optimist.

I know you're out there, love. So I dedicate this to you:

For now, I’d just like to declare this decade – my 20’s – a period of self-discovery.

Thirty - and all the stuff that comes with it - can wait. My itinerary doesn't call for it being my next semi-permanent destination any time soon, and I'm expecting routes down the beaten path filled with forks and u-turns to prolong my arrival there.

Life's about meeting new people, seeing new places, reinvention - more or less, novelty in different forms.

That novelty jolts our blood with the adrenaline that provides us with exhilaration. It's that spark to the love flame that people constantly refer to.

What powers the drive within us to get up every morning is the anticipation of something new. And society has a fixation on renewal, if you haven't noticed. How else do you think icons like Michael Jackson and Madonna maintain cultural relevance throughout the years? Mmmhmm.

Not to say that we’re born doomed. Far from it, I think.

As children, I feel it's as if we're deaf to the noise of the world. All we can hear are the good - not the bad and the ugly. It's a sense of naivety that keeps us yearning for more, to change and grow and reinvent ourselves, but as we age, our ears are forced to become more receptive because the noise just keeps getting louder. Not like a crescendo, more like a sforzando, until it surpasses a threshold and we're incapable of filtering out what we're really meant to retain. As adults, we’ve gone deaf but all that’s audible an ugly perception of reality.

Unfortunately, I’ve come under the impression that some people wake up and realize everything they've got isn't anything they really wanted -- exeunt "happiness" (air quotes) and enter mid-life crisis, divorce, misery, what have you. See Jon and Kate Gosselin for a full definition.

During spring semester of my Freshman year, I took a Chick Rhetoric class, in which we read Bronte, Austen, Kinsella, The Rules, and dissected episodes of Sex and the City to breakdown female stereotypes and gender differences in addition to contemporary perspectives on love and relationships. At 19, I theorized that soul-mates do exist, at least one to each person, but the reason divorce rates are so and why we are more prone to cynicism when it comes to love is because some aren’t with the right people. For reasons I know not, people who aren’t meant to be remain together - perhaps for comfort, stability, status, or a combination of these - thus impeding the rest of society from finding love and happiness, with whomever that may be.

Another aspect of my soul-mate theory concerns the chase. The cat and mouse game doesn't work when people don't have themselves figured out. They don't know what to chase after; they don't know what they're looking for. Which is why I think some people end up with the wrong people. Because they think they'll find what they've been seeking in themselves in others.

And suddenly we can't see anything else but our age and how little we've accomplished in that timespan, so perhaps the reasoning is that beginning lives with another and creating more lives serves as means to gain those experiences vicariously.

I refuse. I absolutely refuse to do any of the above. I don't care if having a child-like perception of the world that encourages me to better myself may seem selfish - I'm doing it. I want to have enough time to figure it out for myself. I want to be able to own who I am. I want to be able to recount my life stories, look back and see that what I've done, what I've been through really has made me whomever I turn out to be rather than looking at the histories of my children. I don't want to resent anyone - my future husband or children - for taking a few precious years from me of a single-girl lifestyle that I couldn't possibly take back or for finally realizing that I'm not the person I portayed to be - to myself and everyone else.

To quote Titanic’s Jack Dawson’s speech to the less appreciative first-class passengers,
“I figure life’s a gift, and I don’t intend on wasting it.”

We're so young. Forever young. And I cannot emphasize this fun fact any more than that.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

must | see trailers

Paper Hearts
starring | charlyne yi, michael cera
release date | 08.14.09

starring | kevin spacey
release date | 08.06.09

Couples Retreat

starring | vince vaughn, jason bateman, jon favreau, kristen bell, kristin davis, malin akerman, ken jeong
release date | 10.09.09

Despicable Me
starring | steve carrell, danny mcbride, jason segel, russell brand, will arnett, ken, jeong, kristen wiig, julie andrews
release date | 07.09.10

Toy Story 3
starring | tom hanks, tim allen, john ratzenberger, joan cusack, michael keaton
release date | 07.18.10


This is a result of the excitement for upcoming movies due to another one of our Movie Madness sprees. What's that, you ask?

Movie Madness is an event during which a couple participants, avid movie-goers if you will, set aside a good 6 hours in one day to theater-hop to 3+ movies. Anything below this minimum is referred to as Movie Sadness.

QG and I absolutely love to reserve entire Saturdays devoted to seeing movies in theaters.
This weekend (Friday & Saturday) we saw the following:
  • Bruno
  • The Hangover
  • G-Force
  • The Ugly Truth
Out of all the movies, I'd have to say that The Hangover was my absolute favorite. Practically everything was quotable, and it's just refreshing to see a genuine multi-bromance that doesn't reek Entourage. Definitely worth the DVD purchase and seeing multiple times.

"I didn't know they handed out rings at the Holocaust."

Daily tiramisu courtesy of QG

Tiramisu in Italian is translated as "pick-me-up," so I'll collect daily snippets and images for your mid-afternoon mental morsel.
Here's the first of many, enjoy!

"Whenever i'm having a bad day...
i'm going to look at this picture...
it makes me giggle..."
- Quirky Girl

Fwd: G-sailing and migas

The girls (Perky Girl & Quirky Girl) and I went garage sailing this morning.
Getting up was pretty hard to do, but for $1 bargains, we all got
right up!

Saw the cutest French bulldog at the first garage sale. Bought a few decorative lamps originally from World Market there, along with a Cardio Remix CD, all for $2.

Made me miss my nephew, Peyton.

Peyton absolutely loves chasing around tennis balls that are bigger than his head.

(His mom is going to HATE me for posting this! It's a bad picture of him from right after he had to get shaved due to a massive abundance of tangles. Gramps + Grandma (Lola) were totally shocked/disappointed when he came home from the groomer's that day. Lola said, "He's never going to get his hair cut ever again! Just grow it out!" And Gramps said, "He looks like a little Ethiopian child." Promise he's much bigger and cuter in person now!)

Had breakfast @ Taquiera Los Jalicienses, where breakfast platters are
$3.50 and migas are deeeelish.

And an outing with the girls never goes without a memorable story...

Perky Girl got up to wash her hands, but I forgot to warn her about
the lack of paper towels...

PG: There weren't any paper towels in there...
SU: Oh, sorry, I forgot to tell you. I just used the TP.
QG: ...She's totally wet!

I look up to see Perky's hands white-knuckle gripped around her
water glass... gone undried. We all laugh at another one of her many
anticipated antics as she snatches a napkin.

They've also got a preeetty creepy jukebox machine that plays songs sporadically. By sporadically, I mean the songs simply start to play - and no one's put any change in to select a request.

Perky started to laugh because I was getting freaked out, and I knew her particular laughter was because she was blaming it on the Grey Lady** in her head. She always starts to laugh when I get freaked out because she thinks back on the first occurrence of the Grey Lady. But right after we all recognized that it was doing it all on its own, the pages of album covers started to turn, and the machine chose another song to play. That's when we all were laughing uncontrollably.

**The Grey Lady is a character from a poster we found in our apartment building elevator coming home one night. Someone had put up a sign in the style of a wanted ad, describing in great detail of how residents were complaining of hauntings and sightings of a gossamer and ghastly woman dressed in a tattered nightgown. At the bottom of the sign, there was a clip art image of a greyscale woman that terrified the wits out of me. Screaming ensued for the remainder of our elevator ride, and I could barely go to sleep at night. Now, when Quirky's alarm clock light or my lamp flickers, or when our bathroom door's hinges get loose and the door slowly creaks open, Perky bursts into a fit of giggles and I tell her to stop and shut up because I know she's blaming the Grey Lady in her head.

Of course, I avoided riding the elevator at all costs. Not that it would have caused a big change in my usual routine, as our apartment is right next to the stairwell - useful for escaping fires and/or parties busted by the cops or TABC.

But a couple days later, Quirky found and took a poster similar to the one of the GL but instead, the protagonist was a velociraptor from Jurassic Park.

Friday, July 24, 2009

And God said, "Let there be light!"

The sun finally came out for a good 2 hours at the pool! The Man Upstairs must've read my slip from the suggestion box. With the sun out, breeze flowing, and water nice and ice cold, who could ask for a better start to the weekend?

A fine July day in Texas for sure.

Name That Blog!

I've had a chronic problem of being an on/off blogger for the past ten years. When I write, I've found that my thoughts don't keep me up till 6a.m. - a time writer's block doesn't seem to exist. When I don't write, I pester my friends with relentless banter of my biggest fears and insecurities via iChat, Facebook messaging, phone calls, and texts. And a noteworthy conversation I had with my good friend Cheryl evoked a revelation to release my thoughts for public viewing.

Brave, I know.

Really, you can stop the applause. Oh, don't get up - there's no need for a standing ovation. Well, if you insist...

Prior to creating my new blog, I figured I'd scour the masses to steal ideas for themes and naming. I even read through several "how to" lists and collections of tips for beginner bloggers. The hardest part was creating a name. Really, the name is what makes or breaks you. I'll forgo the Shakespeare quotation - y'all know it.

Fine, I'll refresh your memory:

What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet.
Romeo and Juliet (II, ii, 1-2)

But the name is everything. Everything.

It's like naming your newborn child. Ladies, I
know you've given some thought to what names you'll ascribe to your future sons and daughters. Don't deny it! I don't feel ashamed in admitting that I've come up with a few myself, but I've taken into account that my future husband's family names will play as a factor. My lists have changed throughout the years, but I tend to combine multi-syllabic, sophisticated girls' names that possibilities of cute nicknames for their childhood years.

You pulled my arm again - I'll release two of my favorites... consider yourself lucky!

Gillian Adele
Amelia Jeanne

Yet again, I gear offtrack! I've decided on a name - finally - after much internal deliberation.

suprisingly... upbeat!
is a quotation I pulled from "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days," starring the irresistible duo of Matthew Mcconaughey and Kate Hudson. It's the scene at Andie's morning staff meeting where the writers and editors share potential story ideas and topics of the upcoming issue of their magazine, Composure. Lori, the incessantly optimistic writer who's beat is focused on digging up the hidden truths of procedures like Botox and Ob/Gyn appointments, successfully spins her ideas to be "surprisingly... upbeat!"

Fitting, no?

And although the clouds are covering up the sun, I'm off to lay out and hopefully catch a couple rays with my roommate at the pool. Cross your fingers the sun comes out so I can get a tan!