Archive | January, 2012

Overachievers

30 Jan

You all know a few overachievers. Maybe you went to high school with them and now you follow their adventures on Facebook or maybe it’s a family member you can’t stop hearing about. Either way… don’t they piss you off?

I think I’m doing a fair amount with my life right now, I write daily in this blog (which you all hear about WAY too much if you are talking to me), I intern for a magazine publication company who I also freelance as a writer and event coordinator for, I am stage managing a show, acting in an upcoming show and auditioning for another show as well as writing a stand up comedy routine and spending time with friends. It is safe to say that I’m not doing nothing; I seem to have plans every single second and I’m getting tired.

So how do people do it? I know people my age who are traveling the world, saving starving children, they speak five languages, have four degrees etc; but where did this time and energy come from?

It’s not that I don’t look up to these people, I really do. Yet, a part of me thinks it is possible that they are doing all this just to make me feel bad about myself. They can not possibly enjoy all the rewards that come from a life of constant achievement, it happens too quickly and I think the pride must be diluted by the frequency of their success. I need them to stop though because it is making me feel like I have to do more and I don’t like it one bit.

I only speak one language fluently (unless I am allowed to count pig latin), I’ve traveled a little, but never on the western hemisphere, I don’t play any instruments (again, unless I can count the triangle because I’m awesome at that) and when discussing real world politics I would probably reference the season of The Real World in Denver where that guy got punched in the face (because I have no idea who Ron Paul is other than his YouTube video). There must be some reasonable limit to how much a human can take in by a certain age.

All I can hope is that someone else who knows me sees how much I am doing and feels like I am successful. Then some day if I’m really doing it all I may even get a friend to think, “Wow, she does a lot… that bitch.”

Ugh… Ugg

29 Jan

I can’t believe I’ve been writing for 29 days now and I haven’t addressed a major problem I have in our society… Ugg boots.

There is so much wrong with this picture...

I guess this picture falls into the category of jumping off a bridge because your friends are doing it. These boots are the fashion equivalent to hurling your body from a high place. Not only do I struggle with the concept of having the exact same shoes as everyone around me, but I am particularly bothered that a large portion of the population doesn’t seem to see how ugly these are. Is this like being color blind?

I have to believe that the wearers of these shoes are unable to see that they look like shapeless dirty blobs wrapped around your foot like an orthopedic shoe treating a club foot. Since when do we let shoe designers off the hook like this? There is no shape to them, the shoe is meant for snow but the material it is made of looks soggy and stained when wet and the color options seem to be poo brown, loose poo brown and sweat stain beige. I remember the first time I saw them on a girl I thought, “Did she steal those slippers from a homeless person?”

Every decade has a style trend that people are later ashamed they took part in, but why are we not learning our lesson?

At one time, these outfits were coveted and imitated...

I guess Ugg boots are proof that people will blindly wear what everyone else is wearing without really taking the time to look in a mirror. I know what a lot of you are saying, “But they are so comfortable”… don’t get me started on that. You know what else is comfortable? A snuggie; but if I saw a person wearing one of those in public I would think they were on the verge of an emotional break down.

This is not a stable member of society...

Over the years, as Ugg boots have held on tight to popularity I have lost a lot of friends to these hideous cloth eyesores. This is not to say I’m not friends with them anymore, I just no longer trust their decision making skills. I apologize to any of you reading this who I have offended, but I’m just trying to help you. Wintertime doesn’t have to mean ugly sweaters, bulky coats and shapeless snow boots. Enough with the excuses, the reality is you are wearing something that has “UGGly” in the name; even the company making the shoe is trying to tell you something. I can imagine that this was all some giant prank and the designers sat around a conference table laughing and said, “Let’s see what we can get people to wear. All we have to do is make something blatantly hideous and pay a few celebrities to wear it in public then watch the masses swarm to the malls.” Well, I guess they win this round.

 

Digging For Gold

28 Jan

Someone very wise said to me recently, “It’s not a coincidence that our fingers are just the right size to fit in our nose.” Truer words have never been spoken.

You all pick your nose, at least once in a while, even if you are the type who uses a tissue to avoid direct booger contact. Whenever I have been a passenger on a long road trip I have seen countless drivers getting up in there. Why are we all so compelled to pick while we drive? Maybe it’s the solitude a car provides or maybe the road inspires people to clean out before they get where they’re going.

Nothing is worse than a rogue booger; when you spot one, you want to listen to what the person is saying but all you can do is stare at the booger. I know the right thing to do is tell the person about it so they can remove it, and it would be worse to let them walk around with it dangling there, but it’s a hard thing to say. You know that the moments while they have to pick it in front of you are going to be horrifying and they are going to have to come up with something to say to break the silence like, “Oh jeez, I was saving that for later!” (insert awkward laughter here).

I’m not sure why this topic is taboo, we all have snot in common, but nobody talks about it. More than that, most people actively deny that they ever go digging, but I’m not buying it. I can’t prove that everyone does it, but I know how it feels to have a big crusty booger up there, it’s uncomfortable and it needs to be dislodged. Blowing your nose just doesn’t cut it, the gooey ones always stick to the little hairs, it’s unavoidable and nothing works better than a finger. Some work better than others for different jobs, for example, the index finger is good for average jobs and big ones near the nostril but nothing tops a swirl of the pinky for the deep dive.

I think we should all stop hiding behind tissues and handkerchiefs and just admit “I pick my nose”, it’s a good lesson in candor. Although I think the bus stops there; something tells me there is no room in this world for the select few who would then admit, “I eat it.”

Look Forward To…?

27 Jan

When we are young there are milestones that we look forward to years ahead of time. The first big privilege is getting your drivers license. In my home state the law allows someone who is 15 and 10 months to start drivers ed and at 16 you can get a learners permit. I wasn’t going to waste any time, so I took the week long intensive course to speed up the process.

Eighteen is a big one: voting, tattoos, credit cards, checking accounts, cigarettes, lottery tickets,  joining the military and more. Basically this is when you become an adult in society and it feels pretty darn good (and not just because of the new-found access to porn).

We all know about 21: liquor, gambling and guns. Wow, that’s a lot of really fun, alarmingly unhealthy new options.

This year I turned 25 and I can admit that I was excited to be allowed to rent a car. Honestly. I guess once the luster of drinking, casinos and firearms dies down all we have left to get uppity about is renting a car. I have been 25 for 7 months now and I have yet to walk into a Hertz. It’s not like 16, 18 and 21 where you plan an evening to take advantage of all your new allowances on your birthday. The urgency has vanished and it becomes enough to just say you can rent a car.

Here is what is alarming though, after all these incredible landmark occasions it all stops. There is suddenly nothing left to look forward to except for retirement in 30 years (I shouldn’t say nothing, you politicos can run for President at 35). You can be a member of AARP starting at 50 which gets you senior discounts plus the AARP magazine! Next, at 59 and a half (really?) tax law allows you to withdraw money from pensions and IRAs with no penalty… try not to pee your pants, I know this one just got you all excited. Starting at 62 you can choose to start collecting social security, although this isn’t fun because if you do decide to utilize this right at that age it’s not really the best financial choice. It’s like, “Hey, you can take this money now, but that wouldn’t be smart… but you can“. 65 is a little bigger because that is when you can start taking advantage of all senior discounts; I can always appreciate frugality, but this seems less like a privilege and more like a nagging reminder that society considers you old. At 65 us young folk have to start cutting you slack and taking care of you, but you can take all your social security so don’t feel sad. Finally at 70 and a half (what’s with the halves?) you reach the deadline for starting a minimum distribution from all tax qualified retirement plans. I understand if you skipped over that sentence, it was as boring for me to type as it was for you to read it.

After writing all this out, I’m wishing I had appreciated my car rental milestone a little more. It is the end of gaining rights. I can officially do everything that real adults can do, and some people might even mistake me for one at first glance. I have lost sight of how many things I’m allowed to do and now I miss the feeling of anticipation. How is it that I have spent years waiting for these opportunists and now I’m not out there abusing my rights? You can be sure I won’t make that mistake again. In 25 years I’m going to throw myself an AARP themed birthday bash, it’s going to be a real hoot.

The DaVinci Theory

26 Jan

I have a theory that I formulated my sophomore year in college and ever since it has proven accurate time and time again. It all started with the ice breakers used on the first day of classes each semester. In one of my lit classes we went around the room saying our name, where we were from, where we lived on campus and our favorite book. I noticed I was judging people based on their favorite book answers; this all led to my theory: If you say that the DaVinci Code is your favorite book it is the only book you have read since Hop on Pop in first grade.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve read the DaVinci code and it was riveting. It is a real page turner and I have to say, honestly, that I enjoyed it from cover to cover, but as an English major I can recognize that it isn’t the best book out of all the books. People who love that novel will argue with me that I’m being too hard on it and it’s a very well done book, but this is about me knowing that literature can not possibly have peaked with Dan Brown. It is along the same lines as someone saying that Danielle Steele is their favorite author… this means she is all you are reading (no judgement, it’s just a fact).

It’s fine with me, I swear. If these writers are getting people to open up a book for something other than the glossy pictures in the middle, I say great. Again, there is nothing wrong with The DaVinci code being your favorite book, just admit that you aren’t a reader and we can all sleep easy. What I can not accept is someone telling me that they have read any of the classics and Dan Brown was better, he’s a good story teller, but he’s not going down in history with Edith Wharton, T.S. Eliot and even more recently, J.K. Rowling (don’t make me explain that random selection of writers, it’s late and I’m tired).

Maybe I can compare this to someone eating at a five star restaurant and then saying that TGI Fridays is their favorite. There is a time for Fridays, but it is never trying to be the best, it’s satisfying and easy, and while the Balsamic Chicken with Angel Hair is awesome, it’s no Chateaubriand.

The Perils of Public Restrooms

25 Jan

Whenever I use public restrooms I notice my anxiety is heightened and not for the reasons you might think. I’m not a germaphobe and I don’t care how many tushies have touched the seat, rather my issue is with other people hearing me while I go.

I think we all feel this way to some degree and it can make the ladies room take a lot longer than originally intended. There are a few scenarios, the first being just pee. Two women are in separate stalls and both have to pee, yet for some reason neither one wants to be the first to start the stream. You both sit there waiting for the trickling to start from the adjacent stall and it is silent. It’s not like pee is embarrassing, but somehow that silence is paralyzing and it makes it impossible to go. The best trick is to wait for someone to wash their hands, then start to pee as the water runs. This can be tricky because you need to have the ability to stop mid pee when the water shuts off (although I hear that is a good exercise to keep your bladder muscles strong). I can’t speak for everyone else, but my reasoning is that I’m always afraid one of those trapped air farts is going to slip out once I start.

Farting in a public restroom for others to hear makes you a prisoner to the stall. You can’t leave until everyone who heard the fart has washed up and left, so nobody can ever match a face to the noise. Even worse is when you are feeling gassy after your lunch burrito and you know you’re going to have a lot stored up, so you have to sit there strategically releasing them one at a time as people leave the bathroom. This can go on and on.

Then there is diarrhea; the noises that that will create are not at all matched to the smell it creates. Once you are guilty of stinking up a public restroom there is no easy way out. I have often pulled a “Wow, smells bad in here… woof, I’m glad I only had to pee so I can get out of here fast”, which is the equivalent of blaming a pet for your farts, everyone knows it was you. I will even admit publicly that I have skipped washing my hands in an emergency so I could make my escape and hide.

I don’t understand though why this all plagues me so much, there are stalls for a reason; so people can’t see you. But why then don’t the stalls go all the way to the floor? The mere fact that others can distinguish me by my shoes is enough to make this whole experience intimidating. Maybe what I should do is bring a spare pair of shoes in my purse and change before I leave so I can not be identified… or maybe I’m over thinking this.

Several people I know claim that they avoid all this by never going number two in a public place. Well that’s all well and good, but I am not lucky enough to be able to choose when I have to go. You’re not better than me.

 

I Swear I Don’t Have an Eating Disorder

24 Jan

I genuinely care about how I look, yes. I’ve always been somewhat thin naturally, but when I went away to college I blew right through the freshman 15 straight to 50. Since then I’ve put in the work through healthy eating and exercise to stay trim, but along the way I have had to catch myself on the verge of several eating disorders.

Anorexia

So I’ve never starved myself for very long. The few times I decided I wanted to look thinner for a big event and made the decision to skip a meal, it lasted an hour or so before my stomach would grumble and I would throw in the towel and eat 5 meals worth. It’s not that it had been so long that I was hungry enough for 5 meals, but when a girl like me goes two or three hours without food it can be scary. This method of weight loss isn’t for me, if I’m going to commit to messing with my health in order to be thin, it might as well be something easier and more rewarding…

Bulemia

This seems like a little more fun because of the binging part. I think I would be really good at that. I like the mentality that comes with bulimia, “I will eat ALL the food then deal with the problem afterwords. In the meantime, pass me the butter!” Starving yourself is one thing, that takes a kind of commitment and mental resolve I can’t fathom; bulimia lets you eat as much as you want. My issue here comes into play because sometimes I do eat more than I feel proud of. We’ve all eaten a full box of Kraft Mac & Cheese and felt that guilt that only orange goo cheese can invoke. After licking the last of the cheesy goodness from the bowl I experience a moment of wishing I had only indulged in half a box and try to figure out how to rid my body of the other half. The problem is that barf is gross and uncomfortable. The worst part is when you barf and then smell it all day because some of it is in your nose. That alone makes this one impossible for me to partake in, not to mention the stained teeth; it’s like wearing a sign that says “I purge”. According to the National Institute of Mental Health bulimia can also be diagnosed when a person follows up their binging with excessive exercise or fasting, so I guess that would eliminate barf… but both of those sound like more work than I am willing to put in. If I was willing to fast I would be anorexic and spare my teeth and esophagus the burden and if I was willing to excessively exercise I wouldn’t have this problem to begin with. That’s just silly. There has to be another way to get the food out of my body…

Laxitives

I stumbled upon this horrible idea for the first time before a Weight Watchers weigh in. It was an accident, I assure you. Before my weigh in meetings I would always try to get up early and poop so I would weigh less, make sense so far? Well some mornings I wouldn’t have to go number two early enough so I would try to think of ways to lose that weight and, naturally, when you want to poo and nothing is happening there is one cure that comes to mind. The conversation I had with myself went something like this:

My brain: Ugh, if you don’t poop before the meeting it’s going to show up on the scale.

My brain: What can you do about it? You can’t force it.

My brain: Or can I?

My brain: Umm… what are you thinking of doing?

My brain: It would only be enough Senna to get things going.

My brain: No no no, I’ve heard Johnny Cash sing about the ring of fire and I don’t want to experience it first hand I don’t have time for that today.

My brain: Just this once, then next week you can go to the gym everyday to make up for cheating a little.

My brain: Well… if it’s only the one time…

My brain: Wait… did this just get scary? Did you just talk yourself into an eating disorder?

My brain: Yup.

My brain: Oh, damn.

It’s that easy for me to go there. Frightening.

I accept that I’m insane and that I care too much about how I look, but for now I choose to use portion control and exercise to look the way I want. I find this method has the downside of being rewarding and it makes me feel accomplished, which is so cliche I might barf (eating disorder!). Yet something about feeling like I’m making healthy choices satisfies me in a way food never could, so I suppose I’ll stick with it. It’s just that these other options seem like a lot less work and responsibility so they tempt me from time to time. Plus, these disorders make you a kind of extreme thin that healthy eating could never achieve so if I ever want to be on America’s Next Top Model or an actress in a movie about a coke addict I have to keep them in mind as an option.

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