What's that? My first guest blog??

Friday, January 29, 2010

I've been on this epic (in my head, at least) cross-LA trip the past two days, and am currently at a scheduled break back in San Diego.  In less than 12 hours, I will be back on the road headed toward Pasadena by way of Irvine for the last 2 days.  I am very happy to be back in my own bed for a bit of a break, because somehow taking a multiple-day trip in a city an hour and a half away from my home is much more harrowing than a week-long trip four States northeast.  Something about knowing the proximity to familiarity...

But it's a good thing i did get back and check my e-mail, because I found out I am the current guest blogger over at Not the Oxygen!  It's my second guest blog written, but first one posted (make sense?), and I am so very happy to have done this with Stephanie.  So click the button below and head on over to read it!

Why should you read it?  First, it's because Stephanie put out the call for Love Horror stories--c'mon, that just promises a good time.  And if that doesn't convince you, rest assured that it's not something I've told many people about (so you're special), and it's something I'm pretty damn embarrassed about.  Are you still reading this?  Because you should have clicked over by now.

I return home Saturday evening, but have an "appearance" to make at a club downtown (I sound so glam...) so I will hopefully be back into Internet/Blogger mode by Sunday.  Have a fabulous weekend, read my guest blog, leave a comment to reassure me you still love me even after you see how I make a fool of myself, and remember: THROW THE POSTERS AWAY.

(if you got that, good job, hooray, and thanks for reading!)


Ten on Tuesday! Volume 3

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

As per usual, brought to you by the amazing Roots and Rings--if you choose to do this, remember to head on over to her site and click on Mr. Linky to link up your blog!  And lookit-me, doing this on an actual Tuesday!  I've grown up so fast...

1. What accomplishment are you most proud of?
In my senior year of high school, my journalism class nominated me as the Most Valuable Staffer/Editor, an award recognized and given by the San Diego Union Tribune (the city's official paper).  I got a plaque and certificate and everything.  I was completely stunned and floored (I wasn't even Editor-in-Chief), and it was awkwardly validating to know that I was among the 8 most valuable staffers in the county.  I was very honored that a class I loved and was absolutely devoted to recognized my dedication.  I can't say my choice to do journalism in college wasn't for a reason, I suppose.

2. How much did you weigh when you were born?

6 lbs, 9 oz. I think.  I haven't asked my mom that in awhile.

3. What is your favorite perfume?
I don't wear any perfume, but if I did, it would be Romance by Ralph Lauren.  Other than the annoyance of one more thing to add to a daily routine, I can't have the bottle in my house because it reminds me of the Men's Romance cologne by Ralph Lauren.  A very painful reminder of a man who hurt my spirit (first year in college-related).

4. How many siblings do you have?
One older brother, who I love and adore with all my heart.  He's my best friend.

5. How many children would you like to have? (Or how many do you have?)
If I decide to have them, 2.  I refuse to raise an only child (no offense), and I'd much prefer an even number of kids.  I don't know why.  Usually I feel as though I'm just trying to replicate my own family.

6. What’s the best class you took in college?
This is going to have be a tie between two of my journalism workshops I did.  The first I wrote about here, and it was Mike Sager's Creative Writing and Journalism class.  His class honestly saved my life, in all senses.  He rekindled my love for the craft, he helped me develop this skill, he guided me at a time I had no one else.  He's currently a Writer-at-Large for Esquire magazine (if you've ever read the "What I've Learned" featurette in that magazine, he's the creator of it), and I recently learned that the movie Boogie Nights (Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch!) was optioned from an article he wrote.  I am very lucky and honored to have him as my mentor.  The second class I wrote about here, and it was Amy Wilentz's Personal Essay narrative.  I credit much of this blog to her, because she forced me to figure out who I was and guide it into my writing.  I still struggle a bit today, but I'm working on it because of that class.  She is the only adviser I've ever had to sit me down, force me to read through my own piece, then flat tell me: "As well written as this is, I see zero of you in this.  You win the award for being able to mask your feelings in your writing.  The only writer I've had who can cover her own emotions so well."  Seeing as how I've always thought I was an emotional billboard, it was definitely a wake up call.

7. What was your favorite game to play when you were a child?
Is every other 20something with me when I say Oregon Trail?  i was all up in that bitch, naming my fellow travelers after people I hated so I could feel a sick twisted joy when they died from a snake bite.  That game taught me what the hell dysentery was.  And yeah, I'm with all those who felt outraged and cheated when my superior shotgun skills were exhibited by killing several ton of bison and birds, but then my party could only bring back 100 pounds.
Aside from that, I was always outside in the courtyard playing baseball with the other kids in my Parco.  And there was this super sweet game my mom let me play on the computer where you have to sneak into buildings and earn your way down this crime-infested street by solving different kinds of math problems in each building.  I hated math, but she tricked me with a pretty awesome game.

8. What character on Friends are you most like?
OH MY GOD IT'S MY DREAM QUESTION.  There is zero doubt in anyone's mind that I'm a Monica.  I can get pretty shrill, and I am freakish about being clean and having everything in its respective place.  I do have to say that I've calmed down a bit, but I'm still pretty anal-retentive about that kind of stuff.

9. Are you a phone person? (ie: Do you like talking on the phone?)
Not at all.  I hate talking on the phone, and only willingly do it with my 3 family members.  Not even my best friends get calls from me.  I'm very lucky that they understand.  And have unlimited texting plans.

10. What was the best vacation you ever took?
When I was 9, my family moved during the summer from Belgium to Italy--and we drove for two and a half months.  It was the best vacation ever, even though I was so, so sad about moving.  We drove from Belgium to Paris down to Spain (just outside Barcelona) to the South of France (St. Tropez and Marseille) to Northern Italy and Rome and finally down to the Amalfi Coast where we lived for the next three years.  It was so much fun living in those places for a few weeks.
A very close second is when we visited Florence and assorted other cities along the Eastern Italian coast.  Florence and Alberobello (in Bari - the heel of the boot) remain to be my two favorite cities in Italy.


Take care of your own damn roses: an early anecdote.

Monday, January 25, 2010

This is a story about Valentine's Day.  And before you yell at me that it's not even close to the holiday (go yell at Target for having their shit out December 26, ok?), I posted this early on purpose.  The first being that I know the closer it does get to that wretched day, tons of stories about love and good will go up and mine will get lost.  And second, mine isn't really about the magic of the day...it's kind of why that day needs to burn in hell.

I've never really talked too much about it on this blog, but you'll start to see a trend in posts about my college life: the first year of university was the worst year of my life.  I hated it.  I am still trying to recover from all the bad and all the negativity that happened.  It's a slow process, but I'm at least at the point where I can reflect on it.  Curse words and wishes of damnation may happen, but be proud I've come this far.

Before college, I was never too big on Valentine's Day, anyway.  I'd never had anyone special to celebrate it with, and it was usually punctuated by friends of mine getting hurt by their boyfriends/girlfriends/crushes/dates/friends/"friends".  Safe to say, I've never had a fond thought about it.  But up until February 14, 2006, I didn't have malice for it, either.

For most of my first year, I had two best girl friends in my dorm.  One of which is a lovely lady who I am so lucky to still have as one of my best friends.  The other I refer to simply as K, because I try to give her the least space as possible since she deserves nothing more.  This Valentine's Day happened to be at the time my friendship with K was quickly disintegrating; things had been said and discovered and done that I wasn't willing to look past.  For this, you do have to know that prior to this month, the three of us had been pretty inseparable.  Them moreso than I, though, because they were roommates.

K had a boyfriend, RJ.  Like most high school couples, they were now long-distance since he went to a university in Pennsylvania.  It was pretty well known that K had a bit of a wandering eye, but for all intents and purposes, she had never cheated on RJ.  I'd spoken with RJ a few times, having been on webcam with him while in K's room, or sometimes we'd chat online.  I liked the guy then, I still like him now.  A couple weeks before Valentine's Day, RJ sent me a message asking for my help.  He was sending over a dozen roses for K as a surprise, and needed my help to make sure the flowers got to K.  Despite my dislike of Valentine's Day, I am still a sucker for anything romantic, and readily agreed.

To gloss over it, K is a social butterfly.  She constantly needs people around and attention and loves to go out and have a good time and party--essentially the typical college student.  So when two friends asked out K and our other friend on Valentine's Day, promising a nice relaxing evening and cooking them dinner, she didn't turn them down.  These guys knew K had a boyfriend, so they knew it was a just-friends dinner date.  Mostly just so the four of them didn't have to spend Valentine's Day alone.

Normally, I would have no problem with this.  I get that someone would want to spend a nice dinner evening with friends, and especially someone who would assumingly be missing her boyfriend.  But what I did have a problem with was the fact K told us not to tell RJ.  She told us it was no big deal, but she wasn't telling RJ about it and wanted us to keep it quiet.  Obviously, alert signs went up.  Especially since I knew the trouble he was going through to send her her favorite flowers and do something romantic, and mostly because I thought it was terrible to hide it from a boyfriend if it's "no big deal."

As the day came closer, K got more and more excited.  She started referring to it as a date, she started obsessing about what to wear.  I almost lost it when I heard she was planning what panties to wear.  She said she was joking when she said, "Just in case!" but I still had my doubts.  Regardless, I didn't like it, but what could I do?  Her relationship was none of my business.

K knew to expect something from RJ that day, but she hardly bothered about it.  The only time I heard her talk about it was when she checked the mail and nothing was there, in which she promptly said, "That bastard better not have forgotten about me!"  And then scurried off to get ready for her "not a big deal" date.

Have we noticed that this entire time, I didn't mention any plans of my own?  It's because I had none, and I wasn't too happy about it.  The guy who promised to take me out as friends unexpectedly backed out, and I was left alone.  Most of my friends were busy or doing something or couldn't do anything (it was still a school day, after all), and I knew I was in for a long, lonely night.  I'd learned long ago to accept that Valentine's Day wouldn't be anything special to me, but I never thought I'd learn to hate it.

As it happened, the flowers were late coming since it was a box and it took awhile for the mail station to sort all the boxes that had come in.  Because of this, we weren't able to retrieve the box until later in the evening.  K was "busy getting ready" and asked if I could go pick it up.  Which already irritated me, because she knew I didn't approve of her date, she knew I wasn't quite happy about all the happy romantic bullshit going on around me, and then she sent me off to get flowers from the boyfriend she was ignoring.  Because I'd promised RJ, I went to get them.

When K opened the flowers, she smiled, said, "Awww!  That's so sweet of him!"  To her credit, she did send him a quick text of gratitude.  Then, without even taking them out, she handed me the box and said, "I'm late for the date, can you take care of these?  You know how to deal with flowers, and you can keep them on your desk until i pick them up.  Thanks so much!"  She grabbed her purse, blew me a kiss, and ran out the door to meet them downstairs.

So, I got to spend Valentine's Day unexpectedly alone, trimming the stems and tending a dozen beautiful roses that weren't even for me, then staring at them sitting on my desk for the entire night knowing they were to return to a girl who didn't even think much about them.  It really topped my night when two friends came into my room and said, "Oh, what beautiful flowers, I didn't know you had a special someone!" and I had to say no, I'm just holding them for a friend.

When K came the next afternoon to pick them up, she didn't say thank you to me for taking care of them.  Instead, she gushed about the dinner the boys made them and how she had a great night and now she was going to go webcam with her boyfriend to thank him properly for the flowers, so please don't come into the room for about an hour.

Also?  RJ told K to give me a rose from the bouquet as a thank you for the help.  She never gave it to me.


Terrible weather and TV tapings. Entirely unrelated to each other.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Hello World.  It's been awhile since I've actually written a post about my current life (aside from sports).  Not that there's a ton going on, but...still.

In good news, I'm 94% (approximate) back to my regular health!  My cough likes to reappear now and again, but everything else is fine.  I was sick for SO LONG, it was incredibly frustrating.  But it seems as though the worst has past.  Unfortunately, I've managed to take down everyone around me.  Mainly my brother, who in turn has possibly spread it to his girlfriend.  Which of course I feel bad about, but they did make me go out with them...

(photo credit to signonsandiego.com, specifically KC Alfred)
If you have any sort of friends or ties to the West Coast, by now I am sure you've heard of the torrential rainfall we've been having this week.  People like to make fun of us and how we freak out when that wet stuff starts falling from the sky--and I admit that most of the time, we are overreacting.  But not this time.  What people fail to see is that because we are the Sunny Southern California 360 days of the year, we are not built to withstand rain.  A drizzle now and then, perhaps one or two hard showers a year, we can deal with it (though we will not do so quietly).  But this, my friends, is not that.  It is non-stop rain, terrible winds, massive thunder and lightning!  I mean, yesterday and today we had tornado warnings.  Here!  In Southern California!  We don't get those.  We get earthquakes, we get droughts, we get wild fires because of said droughts.  But tornadoes?!  Utter ridiculousness.  There are floods everywhere, cars stuck and people getting injured from car accidents and falling trees and unstable roads and downed power lines.  I'm one of the lucky ones to not have to deal with a power outage yet (*knock on wood*).  Tomorrow (Thursday) is supposed to be one of the worst days (hail!), so...be careful out there, kids!  This may put a dent in my library trip...

Is it terrible I'm thinking about my birthday?  I know it's not for two more months, but this is the first year I may actually be able to do anything.  Since Middle School, my birthday has always fallen during some sort of "event" at school: finals week, dead week, spring break; which resulted in me never being able to do anything.  This year, seeing as how myself and most of my friends are no longer in school, we are all (relatively) free.  The issue was the fact I live in San Diego now and have friends spread out between here and LA.  SO...I'm thinking the solution is renting a hotel room in Orange County (I'm considering Newport Beach?) for a couple days and celebrating up there!  I'm quite fortunate in that my birthday does fall on a Friday, so I'm thinking the weekend away with all my friends will do nicely.

Of course, I'd ideally be renting this apartment from a lovely blogger I follow and spending it on holiday in New York City with a few friends, but...we can all dream, can't we?

I am also determined to go to a taping of The Big Bang Theory, currently one of my favourite shows on TV.  The tickets are quite hard to come by, so if anyone can help me out, I'd be absolutely delighted!  And could pay you back in the form of baked goods.  Or sexual favors, but I'm positive the baked goods would be better.

So next week, if all goes to plan, I will be going to a taping of America's Funniest Home Videos.  And to answer your question, yes, that show still exists.  It's one of my dad's absolute favourite shows -- he's watching a DVRed episode as I type this -- and we were able to get tickets to a taping.  It should be interesting at the very least.  I've gone to several TV tapings before and they've always turned out to be adventures.  It'll be good to be back in LA, too.

Which leads me to, I'll be in LA next week!  For longer than just the night, anyway.  I know I am definitely going to be in Pasadena next Saturday because I have to meet with an old adviser to get some paperwork I need, but I'm thinking of staying with one of my best friends/ex-roommates and making a mini vacation out of it.  I miss her quite a bit, since I haven't seen her since we moved out of our apartment last June.  And when we used to see each other practically daily for two years, it's a bit of a tough adjustment without her in my life.  I hope to be able to see an actor friend that lives in Downtown LA as well, because I miss her quite a bit (she is also an old roommate).  It should be a jolly ol' time!

As it is now 2:37am and I'd like to sleep before 4am (something that has not happened this entire new year), I should probably start trying to now.  I've popped in Pride & Prejudice, because the music in this movie is absolutely beautiful.  Tomorrow I do believe I'm going to watch Up in the Air, because I've heard such good things and I managed to get my hands on a Screener copy.  With the hope that San Diego doesn't disappear under water...good night.


Ten on Tuesday! Volume 2

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Once again brought to you by the lovely Roots and Rings.  If you choose to do this, remember to go to her page and link your blog up!  And really, I promise that one week I will get this done on an actual Tuesday.  Starting it on a Tuesday has to count for something, right?  Moving along...Oh God, a book-centric ToT?!  I am so excited, and so damn confused!  This is hard to do when I've grown up in libraries.  My mom has been a librarian/worked in a library since I was 4, so I was raised on books and the Dewey Decimal System and alphabetizing.

1. Favorite book(s) when you were a child and why?
I was all up on Sweet Valley and Baby-Sitters Club.  I grew up on those Sweet Valley twins man, starting with the Kids, working my way to High, and even into University.  I was so much like Elizabeth Wakefield it was ridiculous.  And I loved me the BSC, but the thing is...I hate kids.  I've baby-sat once in my life, and that was when I was 20.  And I don't intend on doing it ever again.  But I just wanted to have a tight group like that and have a boyfriend like Logan (except when he broke Mary-Anne's heart).

2. First “grown-up” book you remember reading (i.e. written for adolescents or with adult themes, such as The Outsiders or Catcher in the Rye).
I have no idea why, but I read Toxin by Robin Cooke when I was 11.  I think I was bored and picked it up from a random shelf at the bookstore.  And as I am still today, I pretty much hate putting down a book once I start it.  So, I just kept on, even though it kind of freaked me out.  I don't really recommend it, actually.  I'm sure I'd feel different if I read it now, but I still glance at my burgers out of fear of undercooked meat.

3. Favorite movie that came from a book.
Crap.  Ummm...Pride & Prejudice (the Keira Knightley version, as I haven't seen the Colin Firth one).  I love that book.  One of my favourites.  And normally I hate hate HATE movies made out of my favourite books, but the beauty and the cinematography of the movie is stunning.  And I think how they handled Mr. Darcy is brilliant.

4. Movie that you loved so much that you WISHED there was a book out so that you could find out more about the movie.
Paris, Je T'aime.  I just want to know how the segment with Gaspard Ulliel (be still, my heart) ends!  Does he find him again?!  Do they connect?!  OH MY GOD I HAVE TO KNOW.

5. Worst book you’ve ever read?
Can I say Toxin by Robin Cooke?  I understand there's probably a bias there.  Will I be publicly slandered if I say A Farewell to Arms by Hemmingway?  It's not that it's a bad book, because it's not.  I understand it, I respect it, I see perfectly well its literary value.  But I just do not like Hemmingway's style.  In terms of worst content, I've read some pretty terrible chick lit books.  I didn't like Charlaine Harris's Shakespeare's Landlord.  The writing was so annoying and the characters were so unlikeable I didn't even finish it.

6. Book that everyone raves about that you either a) haven’t read and feel slightly dumb for not having read it or b) have tried to read and hated and so feel slightly dumb that everyone is getting something you don’t.
Anything by Vonnegut.  I couldn't get into him.  Like Hemmingway, I get the literary value (I did finish Slaugherhouse-Five, as it was a school assignment) and I respect the writing, I just don't like it.  And if anyone out there actually likes the Twilight Series for literary value, Wayne Brady is gonna have to choke a bitch.

7. If you were forced to choose only 3 books that you could read for the rest of your life, which ones would they be?
My heart just constricted.  Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, because it is my absolute favorite book in the world. Franny and Zooey by JD Salinger, because every time I read it I get something new out of it.  And...this is so difficult ahhhh...the His Dark Materials series by Phillip Pullman, because I can--and have--read that over and over and still enjoy it.  And yeah, I cheated, I know.

8. Name one book that if you could recommend that everyone you know read, what is it?
Agh this is just so hard!  I really do think the His Dark Materials series is something everyone should read.  Ignore the stupid ass movie completely, because it does zero justice to the books.

9. What is your “guilty pleasure” reading?
Chick Lit, though specifically Susan Elizabeth Phillips.  I always feel as though I should be reading heavier, thought-provoking books, but we all need a break sometime.  Give me a girl in crisis saved by the rugged but brooding hunk of a man any day.

10. What book (excepting the Bible or other major document of your religion/faith) has changed your outlook on life the most?
Viktor Frankl's Man Search For Meaning.  I don't quote it ever--I actually don't think I could--but I remember reading it in 12th grade for Doc E's class.  I remember sitting on my couch reading it, and I honestly felt that when I looked up from the page, my entire world view was different.  It's a very strange experience, but my approach to life, and how I live and what I view changed.

Ok, that was incredibly difficult, and I know the minute I read this later I'm going to want to change a million answers.


A Golden Globe-themed Pictorial About Me

I'm kind of a big sucker for awards shows.  There are some I pass up (Critic's Choice Awards, AMAs, any on MTV), but most of them I will watch, and definitely the big name ones I am guaranteed to have it on.  Grammys, Tonys, Golden Globes, Oscars, Billboard Music Awards....yeah I'm on it.  I can't explain it, but I really dig the celebrity life.  Not in the sense that I want to have their life and live all the glamour or whatever, but i'm oddly fascinated in their interactions with other celebrities, and the opinions of each other.  Which all come together nicely at award shows.

I rarely do any written commentary on the shows, and even less do I ever do anything with outfits.  If you know me, fashion doesn't really factor into my life.  Before I was 18, I got on with jeans, sneakers and a sweatshirt.  In college, I got on with jeans, slippers (or flip-flops, as I guess non-Asians call them), and layered shirts of a deep-v over a cami/tank.  Now?  I get on in yoga pants and t-shirts.  I'm sure that'll morph when I finally get a job, but you get the point.  What the hell do I know about couture and the like?  Aside from Project Runway, my reportoire is non-existent.

BUT!  Let's alter that a bit and learn some fun things about me using the attendees and the outfits of Golden Globe goers, shall we?

I thought I'd show Marion Cotillard first, because hohmygodiloveher.  BUT...I don't love this outfit.  I want to so badly, and it's so close.  But I can't take the little chunk cut out at the front.  If it had been full, I think I would have adored it.  I do think she still looks beautiful, because...she's Marion.  And the reason I put her here (other than the fact hohmygodiloveher) is because she's French, and I love France and the French language, and--I'm gonna say it--the French.  France is a country dear to my heart for very specific memories, and I've been speaking French since I was 4 years old and I find it so beautiful.

I adore Tina Fey.  She's so brilliant in everything she does.  And really, 30 Rock is possibly some of the best television ever.  BUT...cute as she is here...and other than the fact the dress kind of hurts my eyes (patterned black and whites don't do well with my eyesight)...I feel like the dress makes her look short!  I don't actually know how tall she is (quick Google check: 5'4"), but it doesn't do any favours.  Seeing as how I myself am a measly 5'3", I try to avoid seeming my height or lower in formal situations.

Anna Paquin is weird for me.  I hated her dress the first moment I saw it (which was during the ceremony, because I didn't watch any red carpet arrivals...I was too busy watching my Chargers lose and my boy place second at Nationals...*sob sob*).  But the more I stare at it, the more I come around to it.  It's not anything I'd ever wear (too bright), but...I kinda like it.  It reminds me of mosaic art and the museums I'd go to and some of the street art I'd see when I was walking around Italy.  If that dress were in a solid, dark colour I would totally rock it...and if I had a body remotely acceptable for that kind of exposure.  I also included her (and Stephen Moyer) because they represent True Blood, a terribly horrible show (at least Season 1, since that's all I saw) that I just can't stop watching.  I am just as liable to watch brilliant shows like 30 Rock as I am to watch trash TV like True Blood.

Christina Aguilera.  So the thing is, I love her music.  Her album Stripped is on my top favourite albums ever.  How does that voice fit in such a small body?!  I was never a big fan of her Stripped-era style, nor do I like the throwback one she was rocking awhile for the Back 2 Basics era.  But I feel like she looked so good at these awards!  It's classy and sophisticated while still being weird enough for her.  I still don't like her hair color, but I do like the cut.  It's just so nice to see someone I loved still around, and doing well.

So, I put this in because...seriously, I want to hang out with these three.  I'll be honest and say that I've only seen one Scorsese film (The Departed)--and I know, I know, I'll work on fixing that--and I really haven't seen many DeNiro films.  But how fucking awesome would it be to go to lunch with these three, or a jog in the park, or whatever!?  And...hello Leo.  He-LLO.

Keeping with people I want to hang out with, Meryl Streep.  But really, I just kind of want to be her.  I hope that one day I have the poise and grace and ease this woman does.  And I really hope I am respected in whatever business I end in, just as she is.

While I'm wishing for things, can I also have Jennifer Aniston's body?  I mean, before I get all the poise and grace from Meryl.  How the hell does it look like not a moment in time has passed from the first time I saw her as Rachel Greene in 1994?!  While the slit is just a liiiiiiittle too high for my taste, I do like the dress.  And, of course I had to put someone representative of Friends on this list, because it's such a part of my life I can never not put it in.

GLEE!!  Many, many congratulations to them on their win!  Dianna Agron (left) is possibly my Best In Show.  I don't normally think much of her (sorry!), but holy crap she looks stunning.  Her make-up, her jewelry, the dress....love love love.  And I've loved Lea Michelle since her days in Spring Awakening.  I hate princess dresses, but I do love this one for her.  Besides, it's in black, so I can forgive the massive poof.  I put them in because it's just all a big musical mess, and I love me my musicals!  Matt Morrison, and his voice, and his dreaminess...yes.

Which leads me to boys!  I don't discuss love life much on this blog (it's kind of non-existent at the moment anyway), but lets just set that aside for this.  So first, I will admit that I have a Type.  It's not a solid type--I mean, the rules are a bit flexible, but in general, if you know it, you could pick out the man in a crowded room.  So, unfortunately, no one that fit my bill was at the awards, BUT...as I said, I'm flexible, right?  Yes, let's!

Oh, Neil Patrick Harris.  NPH.  See, what's not my Type is blondes.  However, I will look past that for Neil, because he is possibly perfect for me.  Aside from the blonde.  And...you know...not really into my gender.  I mean, I could look past it, that's cool, but I would think he'd have a problem with it.  If he doesn't though, send him my way!  The amount of charisma NPH has just defies reality.  Have you seen Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog?  Because if not, please go promptly to Hulu, and don't talk to me until you have.  Have you seen NPH do magic?  Because it really is magic (puns!).  He even makes the most sexist man on television (Barney Stinson) lovable.  I mean...really.  And if the rumors are true about him guesting on Glee, I seriously think I will have a heart attack and die.  DIE.

See, dark hair, as exhibited by Chace Crawford.  Even though he dyes it funny and on occasion is blonde.  But dark hair.  Yes please.  So, Chace is here for two reasons.  1) His eyes. Oh his beautiful, beautiful eyes.  I don't have an eye color preference, because mine are the standard dark brown and who am I to reject what I have?  But his...oh, so beautiful.  An ocean of blue, and so much more stunning when they're looking at you.  How do I know this?  This leads to 2) I've met him.  Yes, be jealous ladies, I have.  And seriously, he is so nice, and so adorable, and rather charming.  Initially I decided to go meet him because I needed an event to cover for a journalism thing (hi Vivian!), but let's be real: he's hot.  And it was so worth it.  And because I like to parade this little gem around (please ignore me and my terrible hair and glasses that needed to be pushed up):

Moving along (almost done here kids, I know this is super long), let's actually get into the good things.  The things that count.  Joseph Gordon-Levitt.  I mean, I do think he's quite attractive, but I also find that he seems to be pretty grounded.  He seems so intelligent and passionate and creative.  I love the work he does, and I honestly think he's become such a solid man.  I know I've never met him so this could all be crap, but let me just believe, ok?  Ok.

And lastly, but ever so not least, what it all comes down to is I would like a man who is gracious enough to do this, and lovable enough to do it with a smile on his face:

all photos taken from JJB, but I'm pretty sure most of them are from Just Jared.  Apologies for those not!


This is a sports-centric post

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

So feel free to hit the "Mark as Read" if you are not interested in any of the following topics: football (american), Nate Kaeding, Figure Skating, Evan Lysacek, curling, bowling, hatred for the Raiders/Cowboys, or basketball hate.

this was such a sad, sad moment...photo credit to nydailynews.
Sunday was not a good sports day for me, unfortunately.  The Chargers lost in a very, very sad game against the Jets, 17-14.  So many penalties were called, it was kind of difficult to watch.  And poor Nate Kaeding (Charger's kicker), because he is being blamed up the damn wazoo.  Yeah, he could have definitely made two of those three missed field goals, and he arguably lost the game.  But really, the entire team was just way too riled up.  And seriously, TEN PENALTIES?!  WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU GUYS THINKING?!  Calm the hell down!  Jackson, why do you reverse your gain by almost half its distance?!  Gah...so frustrating.  It was an all around bad game, and no one teammate deserves all the blame.

And I have to say that one of my biggest sports-related pet peeves (yeah, there are multiple of them) is fairweather fans.  Seriously, stick with your team no matter what the hell happens!  And San Diego is possibly one of the worst fairweather football fan cities in the world.  So many people couldn't give two shits for the team when they weren't doing well in the beginning, and then when they started winning people wrote it off as "oh it's a fluke, they'll flub it up."  Then, when the streak got 5 games deep, tickets started to sell. 7 games deep, jerseys were flying off shelves.  By game 9, facebook statuses were up cheering for them.  We managed to go 11 games into a streak, then lost the playoffs.  And all of a sudden, everyone kept saying, "I knew it! They'd flub it up!  Fire Kaeding/Jackson/LT/Norv Turner!"  And that's such bullshit.  Every team is going to have their problems, and guess what?  In every season, 31 teams are going to LOSE.  So suck it up and stick by your damn team.

As much as I love Football, the fans easily ruin this game.  Which is one of the main reasons I hate the Dallas Cowboys and the Oakland Raiders--their fans completely ruin it for me.  Raider Nation is the bane of society, as far as I'm concerned.  I was at the NFL Experience about a decade ago (the host city of the Super Bowl puts on the "NFL Experience" the days before the game.  It's just a big gathering of football enthusiasts, basically), and unfortunately it was Raiders v. Buccaneers.  The Raider Nation was out full force, especially since SD is one of the biggest Raider rivals...ugh.  I will never get over my disgust at those fans.  They are the rudest, most pompous people ever.

Hi, I'm Ashley and I make blanket statements.  That are based in a little of truth though.

(photo taken from the the NBC Olympics site)
And also unfortunately but not quite as sad, Evan Lysacek came in second at Nationals for figure skating.  However, he made the Olympic team!  Not that that's really surprising, since he is the reigning world champion.  And even I will admit that Jeremy Abbott totally deserves that gold medal.  I felt really bad for Ryan Bradley, who fought so hard for that third place that just barely eluded him...even though I think Johnny Weir would have been placed on the US Olympic Team in spite of his placement.  Beautiful routines by most of them, at least...and I can't believe there were SEVEN attempts at a quad!  Five of which were successful, two of which were not (Evan...*sob*), but that's absolutely insane!  I remember watching this when I was a wee young lady, and it was amazing when people could consistently land triple axels!  Goodness the evolution of this sport.

So if it's not obvious, I'm kind of a closet sports fan.  Not so closet anymore, I guess, but you wouldn't really think it if you saw me.  The thing is, I kind of like the obscure sports.  And definitely the sports that actually tread on the fine line between 'sport' and 'activity'--like bowling (I was in a bowling league for 3 years).  And billiards.  I actually much prefer Trick Shot competitions, but I can do for some billiards, too.  Obviously, I dig football, which hardly counts as "obscure."  And I do love me some baseball, whether I'm playing it or watching it (I can admit the bore of it all on the television, though).  But I for reals dig swimming, gymnastics, curling, and obviously figure skating, and the luge...really I could just watch the Winter Olympics for the rest of my life.  Perhaps you've noticed the Countdown to Vancouver 2010 widget on the side of my page.

At the same time, I really dislike a lot of sports.  I absolutely hate hate hate basketball, which makes it a bit complicated because my brother is a superfan and plays basketball twice a week and, even as this post was written, he's headed back from LA from seeing a Clippers game.  And I hate to say it, but I'm not a big fan of soccer/football.  I'm a bad psuedo-Brit, I know.  And somehow I managed to escape being raised in Europe not liking soccer.  I admit that watching the ManU v. Arsenal game was fun when Samra made me go with her to a bar, but really I think I just enjoyed the British-like Pub we were at.  And I can convince myself to like anything on TV, really.  Oddly, I'm not a fan of any college sports.

Ok, apologies for the sports talk, blogosphere.  We now resume your regular Ashley.


In the spirit of today

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Good luck boys, beat them Jets!

Good luck at the US Figure Skating Championships! Vancouver 2010!


A Month-Old Infuriation, or UGH.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

During our Christmas Eve celebrations, one of my little cousins (I guess I shouldn't call him 'little' since he's 17 now, but he's always going to be that gangly 10-year-old to me) brought his girlfriend to meet the extended family.  Chaos ensued.

First, my relatives are...um...how to put this nicely?  We're relentless.  We are nosy, we are kind of rude, and when we want to know something, we stop at nothing to know.  I mean, I knew VarsityB (as I shall call him) and his girlfriend were in for a tough night when I took literally two steps into the house and was accosted by my 70-something-lola (VarsityB's grandma) with: "VarsityB brought his girlfriend you need to find out what's going on go talk to her!"  And she actually shoved me in her direction.  I think that explains us very well.

VarsityB and the girlfriend didn't really handle it well.  I mean, I know it's rough to deal with an interrogation, but you can at least be graceful about it.  His girlfriend refused to speak, and VarsityB just darted his eyes around the room and said, "Uhh...I don't know..."  Please, yes you do know how long you two have been together.  It shouldn't take fourteen people and 2 hours of asking to learn you've been together a month and a half.  You're really only making it harder for yourself.

Dinners at relatives' houses are not like the movies.  There's far too many for all of us to sit at one table nicely together, so we all simply spread out around the house and eat wherever we can find space to park our asses.  Or even just wallspace to stand.  But I found myself on the couch in the living room, and on the loveseat was VarsityB and his girlfriend.  I got to spend my entire meal watching them curled up into each other (hello, inappropriate: you're at a family function, don't be practically making out on the couch the entire time!) and trying not to vomit.

But I almost lost it when I saw...he was cutting her meat.

I was horrified.  I'm pretty sure there was a double-take.  Perhaps a triple- or quadruple-take.  I dropped any and all formalities and flat out stared at them, making sure I was seeing it right.  And yeah, I was: VarsityB was cutting up her meat into small, manageable pieces while she just sat there and watched him.  I even checked to make sure it was her meat (since they were sharing a plate, naturally)--and it was.  He handed her the fork after he was done, she kissed him and started eating it.


What self-respecting woman in this century lets her man cut her meat?!  If you have two functioning hands, you damn well better cut your own fucking food.  Hell, even if you only have one I'm sure you can manage it.  When she wasn't lip-locked with my cousin, she was texting on her phone, so she obviously has the motor functions needed for slicing food.  I understand perhaps all the texting tired out her hands, sure, I get it.

But VarsityB, boy, you are not off the hook either.  What kind of pompous asshole man lowers himself to cutting his girlfriend's meat?  Don't you feel a bit...used?  Kind of like her servant?  Somehow, the picture of her reclining on a chaise in a long ballgown while you stand over the chair in a tuxedo holding out grapes for her to eat enters my head.  Don't you think you should give your girlfriend a little more credit?

Ugh.  Obviously, this entire scenario still irks me out since it's been almost a month since said incident occurred, but really...I couldn't believe it.  I mean, does that really happen?!  Evidently so, but...I can't...it's just...how...



Creep-Out: Men With Long Nails

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Tell me: is there any reason why a man would have long nails?  And I mean LONG.  Longer than mine (and mine are currently quite extensive.  Nothing Guinness Book long, but enough).  I honestly want to know if there is any sensible reason.

Not saying women have a sensible reason to have long nails.  It's a whole vanity thing.  Plus, it's a fun canvas.

The man ringing up my purchases today at Borders (bought The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova.  Highly recommended to me, and on sale for $6!) had ridiculously long nails, and I couldn't help but be entirely creeped out.  It was definitely past the point of laziness and neglect; it was plain length.  I'm pretty sure he tapped the keys on the register with his nails; and I know for a fact that if he were to type on a keyboard, he would have to readjust his finger placement.

So, I wonder: why?!  The only reason I've ever known men to have long nails is for drug use.  General assumption is long pinky nails = powdered drug use.  Borders Man did have 10 fingers with long nails, so...lots of drug use?

Really.  If you have an answer for me as to why a man would have that, any sort of idea, I'm open to it.  I felt bad for feeling a bit of revulsion when he reached out to take my money.  And it's not like he had dirty nails, either (that is a HUGE turn-off for me)--they were fine.  Nothing extraordinarily clean, but it didn't have little flecks of dirt flying off.  I don't think it helped that he was in a very crabby mood (frowny-face) and had really long, very greasy black hair.  It just didn't help paint his image that well.

On a semi-related but not really note, I went next door to the Best Buy and purchased I Love You, Man (hi Sarah!).  The guy who rang me up was super nice!  Very nice.  He asked how my day was, and then started talking to me about the movie, and asked about my life, and asked what I'd done that day, and...asked...and asked...and kept asking.  Still nice, but suspicious.  I mean, he was the only checker and there was a line behind me.  And then I figured it out: he liked my voice.  My "I've been sick for two and a half weeks, am now in the coughing stage, croaking" voice.  What is it about this sick voice that everyone says is so "sexy"?!  The two times in my life I've had laryngitis, all the boys came barkin' up this tree because they thought my voice was "sexy."  Please; I sound like I'm dying or I'm about to projective vomit all over you.  That ain't sexy.

Unless I'm wrong.

And before you ask, Best Buy Boy was cute...but young.  Probably 16.  Talk to me in 20 years, kid.


Ten on Tuesday

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

I know it's not technically Tuesday, but I started this on the actual Tuesday (had to finish it later as I had a brief dinner/tv/movie break), and if I haven't slept yet it still counts as Tuesday.  Right?  Can I say Tuesday one more time?  Yes?  Tuesday.

So, I'm doing the Ten on Tuesday!  Brought to you by Roots & Rings, a lovely blog I discovered a few days ago.  I very highly recommend her.  Also, if you are doing it, be sure to head on over to her page and link up your blog!

1. Are you usually late, early, or right on time?
Late.  Very late.  I've been doing better recently with being only a bit late (I've been on time twice this week though!), but everyone can attest to my chronic lateness.  It's a bit of Filipino time, and it's just how my family works.  There's a story how my mom lied to us to get us to be on time for something...but I think I'll save that for a later date :)

2. What is your middle name?
Marie.  Yes, I have one of the most common names in the world.

3. What are the last 4 digits of your cell phone number?
Three numbers more than my dad's, two numbers more than my mom's, and one number less than my brother's.

4. How big is your bed?

It's a strange Euro-bed that's between a Twin and a Double/Full.  Good for me!

5. What are you allergic to?
We think certain leathers, but we're not positive.  My hands swell when I go shopping and when I go to the Auto Show.  Leather is the only thing we can think of that's present at both places, but still unique enough to those two scenarios.  Also, airplane pillows make me sneeze.

6. What is the first thing you do in the morning?

Turn on my radio and then go to the bathroom.

7. What was your favorite TV show growing up?
Friends and Jeopardy.  They were two of the few American programs we got when we lived in Europe.  I was a bit young for Friends since I was only 8 when it aired for us, but that's ok.  I've loved it from the moment I saw it.

8. Will you, or did you, go to your 10 year high school reunion?

I would like to! It depends where I am, of course.  Physically.  I'm pretty sure I'll go to a reunion no matter my life/relationship/career status, as I'll be curious where we all are.  Yes, I keep up with most of my friends through Facebook, but my class was 789ish people...that's much more than I care to Facebook.

9. If a tree falls in the forest and nobody is there to hear it, does it still make a sound?
Yes.  I'm pretty sure humanity has proven that existence does not depend on witness.

10. What, in your opinion, is the greatest invention? (You know, since sliced bread…)
I marvel every day at the invention of the computer.  Who in the hell thought up all the intricacies of this machine?!  I mean, honestly, if you saw a ton of wires and circuit boards, would you have thought, "Hmm...let's combine these into an EPIC ELECTRONIC DEVICE THAT WILL CHANGE MANKIND."  And the fact that it was so unlike anything else, but was still versatile enough to accommodate all the changes that came upon its future.  It's a wonder, really.


the age of 17 revisited

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Earlier today, I was reading an old AIM (!!) conversation I had with a friend, and in it she mentioned a poem that I completely forgot about.  It was a poem I had written, which she had used in a presentation.  This poem seems to be quite popular from my repertoire (yes, let's pretend I have one of those) as it has been read aloud or shared in some form eight separate times.  Oddly enough, though, I have never been the one to read it or share it, nor have I heard it being read.  I posted it on one of my old blogs and my deviantArt site (hmm...I should really see what I have on that) and next thing I know, I had people requesting to use it for personal or academic things.

So, I went and found it, and now I share with you.  It was written November 24, 2004 at the ripe age of 17...and I still remember down the detail why it was written and who it was written for.  I am astounded that, even as I read it now, it's very true and very applicable to several situations.  Sad in a way, really.

Anyway.  Without further ado...

Wasted Words
I smiled and laughed at your jokes
Cried and comforted at your sorrow
I stood by your side in your deepest time of need

It was all wasted words

When I cry, pick up the phone and dial your number
No one is home
When I shine, call your name to spill the good news
No one answers

It was all wasted words

I don’t know what to call us
We were the closest friends for awhile,
And soon I could barely stand your presence
We were once the golden, sought after relationship
But now

It was all wasted words

Twenty years from now my name will nag your memory
It will spark a past you have long since forgotten
Ten years from now you’ll smile at my shadow
And think, “yeah those were good times”
Five years from now I’ll be on your Christmas card list
Of those you never got around to
Next year will be a formal “hello how are you goodbye”
And no longer will I cross your mind

It was all wasted words

Next year I’ll still think of you, every day
Five years in the future you will be the one I regret
Ten years from now you will be the one who I let get away
Twenty years from now I can only imagine

It was all wasted words


Owning up to Summer

Monday, January 11, 2010

Let's talk (500) Days of Summer, shall we?  Have we all seen it?  Yes?  If not, please click here: (500) Days of Summer according to Wikipedia.  Some may say this needs a spoiler, but it's part of the marketing that we know the couple in it (Tom - the illustrious and oh-so-talented Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Summer - the ever-lovely Zooey Deschanel) do not end up together.  Its tagline reads This is not a love story; this is a story about love.

If that doesn't say a ton, I don't know what does.

Now, I love this movie.  I love it so, so much.  The day I saw it, I immediately went home and downloaded it and watched it the next day again.  As I type this, it's playing on the TV in my room (how better to get in the mood?).  It's funny and heartbreaking and hits so close to home to probably everyone who has viewed it.  Or even heard about it, for that matter.  I love it's style, I love the nonlinear format, I especially love the segment of expectation/reality.

I think we can all relate to Tom.  Poor, so-in-love, heartbroken Tom.  Who meets, falls in love with, remains in love with, fights for, and eventually moves past the girl.  We all know what it's like to meet that one person who immediately captures our heart (or even gradually build a place in your heart).  We all know the excited fear of the initial crush, that scared hope of a possible relationship.  The elation of knowing when someone loves you.  That "do I deserve this?" feeling when all is right in the world.  We all know the feeling of frantic terror when we can feel something isn't quite right.  The feeling of grasping thin air when it's slipping away.  The constriction of your heart when you know what's coming.  The broken heart, the heavy loss, the hopelessness of your days when it's all gone.  Even that little blip of anger when blame enters for a few days--and the emptiness that follows when the blame comes back unto yourself.

We all know it.  Everyone has loved someone more than it was returned (if at all).  In all variations of love, in all extents of loving someone.

But here's the thing.  Yeah, I'm a Tom.  But...I'm also a Summer.

I know she's kind of the "evil" one here, and most of the people I know keep calling her a callous bitch.  I get that she broke his heart, and it was selfishly cruel to dance with him at the wedding and then invite him over to her dinner party without telling him she was engaged.  She toyed with his emotions, had her fun, and blocked him out.

But I'll own up to it.  I'm a Summer, too.  Yeah, I have a broken heart, but I'd be lying if I said I hadn't mishandled some boy's heart, too.  It's not that I purposely play with the boy's emotions, or that I'm wrapping him around my little finger and I use him and toss him carelessly aside.  It's never like that.  But what I mean is that...I can't help but follow my gut.  If something feels right, I am guaranteed to do it.

Even if it hurts someone.

I just can't help it.  An instinct is worth so much more to me than reason.  All my life, I've followed what felt right in my gut, and it has yet to lead me astray.  Yes, it has led me to some ridiculous, heart breaking times, but it also led me out.  And that is the part that matters to me.  So yeah, i'm a bit of a Summer.  When she says, "I just woke up one day, and I knew," I knew I had forgiven her for breaking Tom's heart.

Ok, yes, she didn't have to dance with him at the wedding.  And yes, she should probably have mentioned her engagement before inviting him to the garden party on the rooftop.  She's human, ok?

We all are.


An Ashley Absolute

Sunday, January 10, 2010

An Ashley Absolute: a little thing about me you may not know.

Today's AAA: I have an Emperor Penguin in Antarctica. (Courtesy the WWF and one of my best friends)


We interrupt your regularly scheduled program

Friday, January 8, 2010

Well, that didn't go well.  Upon the fixing of my wireless, it was discovered that the laptop I've been using is also infected with a Trojan virus.  Hooray! or...not.  It's a fairly new virus apparently, so there isn't much information as to how to remove it from the system without damaging it (aren't I so special, to get to experience it before everyone else...).  Which means, an entire system reformat is in order.  I'm not devastated about it much since it's just a filler laptop and I don't keep much stuff on it, it's just a ginormous hassle.

Anyway. So what I'm saying is, I didn't get a chance to play with coding.  Rather than deal with that, I just decided to take out the entire layouting and revert back to a standard Blogger template until I have the time and working technology to find or design a new layout.  As much as I liked the old layouts, I didn't want to deprive any of my readers the ability to leave me comments!  I'd much rather take the hassle for myself rather than hand if over to readers and make them continually struggle past the word verification.

As a small update in life, I think I'm going to the zoo tomorrow!  Pending how much my cough wants to interfere, anyway.  The baby panda (see the Panda Cam for eternal cuteness!) is making his public debut!  And seeing as how I have a season pass to the San Diego Zoo, I figure this is the perfect time to utilize it.  It's probably going to be crazy, because apparently Baby Panda Bai Yun gets all of Southern California into a tizzy, but it should be fun, too.  If Bai Yun decided to be cooperative, I'll snag a picture and post it for everyone to have their hearts melt, too.

Click the jump if you want to read the original PSA:


Vegas Rant Love and New Year Thoughts

Monday, January 4, 2010

I was going to do a Wrap-Up '09 post, but doing the blog challenge made me reflect enough. And what I didn't talk about, I probably don't want to revisit. Besides, it's only last year...there are more important things.

Like the decade being over! In honor of 10 years of life being over (that I fully remember) and my first 10 years being in one country, I figure I'll do a decade in memories. That'll come at a later date, when I feel better. As it is, I'm a bit healthier now. Still a bit stuffy, and my throat seems to want in on the action now. But I'm getting there--enough for a blog post, anyway! And for a revamp of my site. I was going to say "new year, new blog layout," but that'd be a lie. I changed it because I hated how my grey background was showing up on my iPod Touch. No, really. It just coincided nicely with Earth beginning one more revolution.

So, again, Happy New Year! How is 2010 shaping up for all of you? Mine has been...uneventful. Unless you count being in Vegas an event, even though nothing too exciting happened. For the record, I went to Vegas for New Years and didn't gamble a penny or drink a drop of alcohol. It can be done, people. I did, however, manage to be a grumpy grouch and piss off every member of my family. And, despite my numerous denials that I don't know everyone, I ran into a grand total of 5 people I know at my hotel (the Monte Carlo, for those wondering). Incidentally, I also awkwardly avoided 5 people I knew in Vegas.

You know, I just don't really like Las Vegas. It's so weird with the weather and it's so damn dry (seriously, cracks in my skin that possibly expose the center of the earth) and I just get shocked everywhere (I'm talking sparks, kids) and it's so expensive and there are so many douchey guys and slutty girls. I saw a girl wearing a shirt I own--except she wore it as a dress. I assure you, it's a shirt. I can also assure you that she shaves. And when did Planet Hollywood turn into douchebagassholery central? Because really, I had to get out of there about 3 seconds after I walked in. The amount of leers increased 67% (scientifically proven) the second I went in there; and I can tell you that I was definitely not wearing anything that garnered that kind of look. Not to mention snot probably dripping out my nose and terrible, hacking breaths coming haphazardly out of my open mouth. I mean, if some prick whose bicep size is bested only by his ego is willing to make inappropriate comments to me, there is no telling what he would do for some girl whose dress is about as low as her IQ. The entire place was just...creepy. It's like everyone who wishes they could be in Hollywood decided to shack up in Planet Hollywood; all puffed-up conceit and nothing to show.

How about a picture?
apologies it's small and the quality is crap - I took it on my BlackBerry. I unfortunately forgot my camera this night, so I had to leave it to the BB. This is part of the winter/Christmas display at the Bellagio. It was a beautiful display, filled with a lot of Christmas cheer. To be fair, there are parts of Vegas I like. The Bellagio, for one. The Jean Philippe Pâtisserie at the Aria and Bellagio and their fucking amazing Nutella crêpes. The entire Aria hotel, which is stunning. The architecture of the hotels. The little tram between the Monte Carlo, Crystals, and Bellagio. The fountain show. How that city really never does rest; my brother and I went out at 3am and there were just as many people out as there where when we checked in at 1pm. The buffets. The Fatburger and McDonalds right next to each other. How I can go to any street corner and get a business-card sized picture of a nude woman with massive fake boobs and an eeny-weeny-teeny-tiny g-string bikini.

So 2010! I'm pretty determined to get my shit together right now. I guess you could call it 'resolutions', but I've never been one to keep them. I'm hoping some sort of reverse-psychology-type thing happens, in that if I don't call it a resolution I will keep to it, as I apparently have some aversion to keeping resolutions. I basically took half a year off from life. Yes, I job searched a bit, but I was never serious about it. I'm starting to get that itch of needing something to do, needing to fill my days with something other than my Google Reader. This might also have to do with getting my first bill to start repaying my college loans, but who can really say? I need a job, I need to get back to freelancing, I need to do something with myself. So that's resolution promise swear goal possibility thought #1: get shit together.

Thought #2 is the typical exercise thing everyone does. Except mine is more going to be "work on being healthy," because...baby steps, kiddies. Baby steps. I'll gradually build from just jogging around my neighbourhood to more.

Thought #3: Stop reading books so much. Weird resolution, right? Well, I have a sneaking suspicion that books are the root of a lot of my issues. I pick reading a book over going out in less than a heartbeat (read: anti-social). I spend my time in libraries rather than out somewhere else (again, anti-social. And quiet). I pick reading over exercise (thought 2). I just let books suck up all my time and energy. And while it's good for me and my writing path, it's bad for my health and sanity. I spend so much time in other people's words and worlds that I very rarely figure out mine.

Thought #4: By the end of the year, I will have given up soda. Yes, I will.

I'm sure there are more, but I have no idea. Nothing I want to actually commit to (commitment issues? what? why would you ever say that?! Oh...you didn't? My mistake.), and nothing solid enough where I'm sure I could give it a real shot. I realized that I have been watching a lot of movies this year, though. Not new ones in a theatre, but just any movies. It stems from going to the library twice a week, but it's still interesting since I very rarely see movies. Seriously. Anyone I know in real life can tell you how sad my list of movies is. Tell me your favourite movie; there's about a 98% chance I haven't seen it. Clueless? Sorry, haven't a clue. Saving Private Ryan? Sorry, he's still out there somewhere. Gladiator? Sorry, I've lost that fight. Bad puns? Oh, right, not a movie. Anyway, I was thinking of making movie watching into some sort of resolution Thought, but we'll see.

Well, this post is an eternity long, innit? Apologies, I guess I got overzealous since it's been so long since I've blogged! Hopefully I'll be back to my 100% health soon and regular schedule.

PS. I have been alerted (thanks to Stephany and Vivian!) that the comment function on my blog is a bit off. I'm working on re-doing coding to see if I can get the scroll bar into the verification, but if not a new layout will have to come since this is a "pre-packaged" sort of thing. For now though, if you want to comment, press TAB at the verification code rather than try to scroll. Sorry for the inconvenience, guys!


New Year! But not a 2010 post.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Hello! I have returned (and obviously, survived) from my weeklong mass of doing things. Firstly, Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a fantastic end of 2009 (if you can remember it!), and that the first few days of 2010 have been amazing.

I wanted my first post of the new year to be something special, but I unfortunately fell quite sick these past few days and just don't have the energy to do it. I caught a cold while at Disneyland (and somehow managed to chip a tooth, too. These aren't related, but I thought I'd throw it in), and against my better judgment went on the Vegas trip anyway. I knew it would probably make me worse, but I also knew I'd regret not going. I had a good time, but as predicted, I am ridiculously sick now. And heavily medicated.

So I am postponing my "first" post to later when I feel better. In the mean time, I had written out the rest of the Best of 2009 Blog Challenge but never had the time to post it. Even though it is no longer 2009 (!!!), I wanted to finish it still.

Day 23 - Web tool
F'realz, Google Reader. I never used the thing until recently (it coincided nicely when I joined 20sb), and I find it to be the best thing EVER. If only I had discovered its mighty usage when I was on my own laptop - not clicking so much between everyone's blogs might have helped it not go kablooey so quickly.

Day 24 - Learning Experience. What was a lesson you learned this year that changed you?
I have to say, I learned the tough life lesson of injustice. Without going into too many details since this is on the World Wide Interwebz for all to see, I was given (literally, given) a full-time job as a Web Designer the beginning of July. I was laid off with no warning August 11. I don't mean it as malice against the company, I understand it's a small business and it's a tough economy and there was a family crisis that all came together into the crescendo of my release of employment.
But there were several things I found to be quite disappointing in the entire company, management, position, etc. Like I said, I can't go into it since this is the Internet and could be incriminating to bitch about a past job, but trust me when I say there were quite a few unfair things going on. Enough and to the extent of me calling it "injustice."

So yeah, I have to say that I learned a lesson of being let down. The good thing, though, is that I also learned how to come back.

Day 25 - Gift. What's a gift you gave yourself this year that has kept on giving?
September was a gift for me. I moved back into my parent's house September 1, and since then I have given myself a bit of a vacation. It gave me a lot of time to think about my life. Newly graduated, suddenly unemployed, and without a lot of direction, I've been given the rare chance of considering, and thinking, and contemplating who I am and what I'm doing. It was refreshing and much needed, because despite it all, I'm feeling a lot better balanced these days then I did during my 4 years of college.

Day 26 - Insight or aha! moment.
I'm um...going to have to come back to this. I actually believe this will be included in one of my reflective, "wrap-up" posts of 2009. Which will hopefully make it to the blog by the end of 2010.

Day 27 - Social Web Moment.
I have to say that 20sb will be my social web moment of the year. Yes, it was late in the game, but it still means something to me. I've been able to talk to some pretty cool people and find some extremely amazing blogs. It's been fun using my blog for something.

Day 28 - Stationery. When you touch the paper, your heart melts. The ink flows from the pen. What was your stationery find of the year?
I can't deny the beautiful touch of the standard college-ruled notebook paper. It's nothing fancy, it's nothing special, but it always invokes memory and procedure and thought.

Day 29 - Laugh.
I've been very lucky to have a lot of laughs this year; which also means I don't remember what my biggest one is. I'm going to cop out the literal way and say that it was at the Demetri Martin comedy show. Not only is he absolutely hilarious, but he's so clever and witty and intelligent. His jokes are thoughtful, in a weird way. So good. (Picture at left is an example of one of his jokes. Click to view a video.) Even though that night wasn't exactly what I expected (and I missed the beginning of DM's show!), I loved the show and hope I can see him live again soon.

Day 30 - Ad. What advertisement made you think this year?
I'm changing the prompt; the adverts that stuck with me are the Sony ones with Justin Timberlake and Peyton Manning (and 2 other guests, pending which product Sony is pushing). Hilarious, adorable. And yes, I am very proud to admit this has every bit to do with my attachment to JTimbs and all things *NSYNC-related. YEAH I SAID IT.

Day 31 - Resolution you wish you'd stuck with.
I didn't make resolutions last year. I knew this year was going to be the biggest alteration of my life, and I couldn't bring myself to put any more expectation and hope in it than already there. That said, I may venture a few resolutions for 2010...which will come in a later post :)

When I started this challenge, I did it really just to give myself more ideas and variety in what I talked about in my blog. But it turned out to be a lot more. On a negative note, I actually think it brought my blog to a bit of a stagnant halt. Whenever you look back, it always turns a bit serious and thoughtful...and while I am like that a good 70% of my day, I don't want my new followers to think all I am is a whining bunch of regrets and past faults. We'll see what happens now that this is over...maybe I'll discover that I am actually that 100% of the time. On the good side, though, it was pretty rewarding...I didn't realize everything I'd done this year. And these things are only the ones that immediately came to mind, nevermind all I haven't mentioned! Regardless, thanks for coming with me on this 2009 reflection.

Until my health returns,


About Me

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I'm fairly obsessed with penguins, Peanuts (the comic), and the TV show Friends. Parentheses may or may not be (over)used in this blog, and books will pretty much be the only thing I ever talk about because they are my One True Love.


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Zoe's bookshelf: read

The Dragon's EyeAngelsThe Lightning ThiefThe Man of My DreamsCity of GlassCity of Ashes

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