WTF?!!? This Illness Is Really Weird!!

This is me right now. OMG.

Photo credit: http://henyamania.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/sick-dog.jpg

My boyfriend, John, has a very annoying habit. He has two kids, both teens, so he has developed an immunity to weird, child related illnesses. However, he still contracts them from time to time and since he usually sees his son on Thursdays,  he sometimes comes and settles in with me and then gets sick over the weekend, during which I take care of him. Tenderly, I might add. I take his temperature and get him glasses of water or tea and make chicken noodle soup from scratch. Because if I don’t, then I am apparently a horrible girlfriend (or person).

On Mondays, John is usually feeling better so jaunts off to work, leaving me to suffer, if I have caught his cold or flu, which I usually have at that point. So then I am left at home, alone, and have to face the wrath of reporting in sick, AGAIN, like I’m a loafer or hypochondriac.

THAT IS SO UNFAIR. There are times, too, that John says, “You might totally get fired.” And I’m like, well, stop getting me sick! And as an aside, WHY DO YOU CARE? If I get fired, it’s my job or gig, right, not yours!! I’ll find another one! ‘EFF OFF!!

Right now, if John is reading this, he’s probably thinking, “She’s making me look so unfeeling, I do pamper her when she’s sick, why is she making me look like an asshole?”

And he would be right. He is caring and helpful and nice when I’m sick (I love you, John! Kiss kiss!). But right now I feel like shit and want to be unreasonable and and blame everyone around me for every bad thing that has happened to me over my lifetime.

Please keep in mind that I feel awful right now and when I do, my irascibility and temper goes up a few – okay, many – notches. The surefire way that you can tell when I’m truly sick is when I lash out at people and yell at them (weakly, from my bed or couch, but with enormous intent!). Sometimes I throw things like my head compress at my caretaker, if I think he is hovering over me too much. GET the ‘EFF AWAY ALREADY! I’m not dying!! I’m just sick!!

No, I’m not a pleasant convalescent. Did I say I was? Because obviously I’m totally not. I get pissy and throw fits because I cannot abide the fact that my body is letting me down and preventing me from doing stuff I want to do. Stupid body!! Goddamn microbes!

Actually, I am probably more like this.

I didn’t develop and shore up my white blood cells like John did, through years of exposure to kid-germs. Yet here I am suffering from the consequences of them!! Argh! I would be more frustrated, but I don’t have the energy to be. I just want to trundle off to bed and tuck myself under the comforter (since NOBODY is here to do this for me, fucker! Yeah, I’m talking to you, my significant other, who got me in this condition in the first place! That’s right, let’s take this outside!!!).

Sniffle.

I apologize for my indelicate language. I tend to swear A LOT when I’m  sick. Maybe it’s because my barriers are lowered so whatever I am thinking in my head actually comes out of my mouth, as opposed to other times, when I am able to exercise some restraint. Right now, I am basically a huge baby thrashing around in frustration at my plight.

WHY?!!? WHY DOES THE WORLD HATE ME?!!? WAAAH!

This cold I have? It is one of the strangest I’ve ever experienced. I feel high or drunk, but without any of the euphoric benefits, like inexplicable happiness or the giggles. I’m woozy and can’t walk very well and have to peer down at my keyboard to type this post. I can’t navigate heavy machinery (or any at all) and feel all lightheaded and out-of-it, but don’t have the benefit of those transcendent, self-searching philosophical discourses we all engage in when we are in an “altered state of mind”. What is this? I’m all dizzy and dehydrated and sleepy and just, for the love of god, just want to curl up into a ball and hibernate. Or die.

So take my advice. Stay away from me for at least a few more days. It will be safer for you. Health wise. Life wise. For me, too, because I don’t want to go to prison for the homicide of someone who was only trying to comfort me. I am in the midst of a gigantic temper tantrum right now.

My High School Years Were Some of The Best

Kids don’t get it. You tell them this, about how they don’t need to grow up so quickly and how they should enjoy their childhood years, but they don’t actually understand this because, well, they’re kids. I don’t have any, so I can’t speak from personal experience, but that’s what I’ve seen all around me. Children don’t know how precious their innocence is or that the experiences they are going through when they are young are some of the ones they will hold onto and cherish.

I have recently been reconnecting with some of my high school friends and per my previous post, contemplating on how that time impacted me.

I know what people think of boarding school. The image that comes to their minds is mainly this:

Baroness Schraeder from The Sound of Music: Darling, haven’t you ever heard of a delightful little thing called boarding school?

But it wasn’t like that for me or at least at the school I ended up attending. It wasn’t a military school, where misbehaving juvenile delinquents (as judged by their parents) were shipped off to. It was more of one of those snobby ones, where kids hailed from families of political standing or economic empires. However, it did house some of the most lonely and neglected kids I had ever met.

I guess I may partly fall into that category, but “Poor Rich Kid” types were the ones that predominated the campus; we all mainly came from families that wanted the best for us, but could afford the insane tuition because they worked hard and was therefore not around much. We usually had one or both of our parents being those that wandered into and out of the tangential borders of our lives.

I found myself with friends who had either experienced a degree of that as well as ones who were on scholarships or came from actual, healthy families. I was lucky to find the friends I did. Caring and warm and smart, regardless of their backgrounds. Out of all of us, aside from one or two, I think that I was the one with the most dysfunctional family out of the group. I never realized that it was an decently extreme outlier in the bell jar diagram of healthy family dynamics. I thought that there may be many students I would meet who came from really messed up ones like mine, but I was wrong. But it’s okay.

However, after all I’ve been through since then, I have to say that although my family is majorly fucked up, they sometimes come through in my times of trouble and turmoil. It was reassuring to discover that, even it if took some completely ‘effed up circumstances to finally know that my family actually does have my best interests at heart. Sometimes.

My mother was like this. She has calmed down somewhat, which is why I feel safe posting this. Also, she is unaware of my blog. However, to be honest, she still scares the crap out of me.

I didn’t 100% care about what boarding school I ended up in. My sister did a bunch of research and identified the ones that were the most “desirable” and I ended up at the same school that she attended after touring it since I liked what I saw and knew that kids from my middle school were planning on going to the rival school. I didn’t want reminders of my past life around me. The whole point of me living away from my home and old chums was to…get away. So why would I want remnants, reminders of that life? No way. So I decided on the school they eschewed, without even realizing how much it would actually influence me.

I never really comprehended how prestigious my boarding school was while I was there as a student. I was just so happy that I was finally free and with being able to escape the dark gloom and drama that seemed to drift over my mother’s head and make her do things like throw shoes at my sister and me. As well as her doing other, more traumatic stuff. I was finally free! Finally, after years of looking out my bedroom window and wondering when I would be able to get away, I was on my own! When I was a kid, I would gaze out onto the night sky and brilliant moon and think, “Just hang in there.”

I gloried in the New England autumns and springs and romped around doing whatever I wanted, without constant recrimination or judgement, as long as I brought in good grades (and I wasn’t even too good at that and had to endure condemnations from my mother about how I was wasting all my good education). I couldn’t relate to how heavy a financial burden my schooling was back then, but do much more now after having to actually earn my living. I can’t afford to send a child of mine to that school right now, unless she or he was extremely gifted and landed a scholarship.

I loved my high school years. I never wanted to leave. It seemed like everyone else around me during our graduation were so eager to move onto their college experience, but I was sad. I wanted to stay, traipsing through the colorful landscape and waking up at 2:00 in the morning gazing out at the winter scenery while reading a book or writing random stories in my journal. When I had a roommate, we would place our Ben and Jerry’s ice-cream cartons against the windows, it got so that cold. But I loved it. I loved the frost of every winter, the incandescent colors of the leaves that fell every autumn. I absolutely loved every second of boarding school. So it destroyed me, when I was a teen, to have to leave.

To this day, I count my boarding school years as one of the most rewarding time periods in my life. I know that it wasn’t the same for my friends or kids I knew there, but for me? I thoroughly, unashamedly, ecstatically loved it. And I hold close to me many memories I formed there over the years, years I can look back on and think fondly upon, at that child that was me, being somewhat innocent and awed by a new life and its experiences.

I hope that if I ever have any children, that they will experience the same. And hold tight onto those dazzling years of their childhood and teenage innocence.

College Decisions. Accept or Deny. I Forgot How Stressful It All Can Be.

This was basically me during college apps.

My niece is waiting to hear from colleges right now regarding her applications. She’s a senior and apparently pretty stressed out. Which I can get.

I was mostly lackadaisical when it came to mine, mainly because I wanted to do an ‘eff you to my mother. I applied to ZERO Ivy League colleges, which I think kind of pissed her off, but she never said anything to me about it. Come to think of it, my mother was kind of cool throughout the entire process, assuming a very hands-off approach that I appreciated.

After having briefly heard from my sister about my niece’s struggles in the gray world of Not Knowing Where She Would End Up, I suddenly recalled how it was for me.

I attended boarding school. So neither I nor any of my friends had the safe buffer of parents beside us as we opened up those decision letters (this was before you found out your status through a convenient, online portal). All the students crowded the mail room, which was actually quite large, but you could still tell that we were all waiting for those proclamations on whether we were good enough or not. I can still hear the “pft, pft” of those envelopes being pushed into our mailboxes and the restrained breathing of the kids around me as we watched, stared, as those little windows of our individual mailboxes suddenly fell dark because there was one, or two, or three envelopes occupying that precious space, possibly determining what would be our future.

I was never one of those that camped out at the mail room, because the tension in that place was always at an all time high during those times. You could feel it, it was almost palpable, the belief that all your hopes and dreams may be dashed in an instant because you didn’t get into Harvard, Yale, or Princeton. Aside from my rebellious nature, I’m not sure why I didn’t apply to any of the Ivies. Maybe it was because I was done with roaming around in the ivory tower world of those who thought they were the intellectual elite. Perhaps I was completely over the idea that where we ended up, college wise, would define us as winners or losers.

However, where you go to college does chart your course in life. I’m not talking about your resume. I’m referring to your geographical location and the people you meet. Oftentimes, people stay where they are at least a few years out of college and the friends they make as undergrads or immediately afterwards, well of course, it would be those that they met while at college and beyond.

One of my dear, close friends was my roommate during my freshman year. I call her my “sister of the heart” because for whatever reason, although we came from completely separate backgrounds, we got each other. She is one of those people that I will catch up with between years of separation (and I mean that literally, as in there were times when we didn’t talk or write for up to four to five years) and still feel like no time has passed and still connect, heart to heart, mind to mind.

I really lucked out. Nadia is from Rabat, the capital of Morocco, and is extremely intelligent in all aspects. She speaks empteen languages and has a high learning curve and therefore can finish pretty much any project you lay before her and very well, too. Apparently, she was accepted by a lot of colleges and as she told me, her father laid down all the acceptance letters on the floor of her bedroom and instructed her, “pick one”. She had no idea as to what any of the colleges had to offer and I don’t think she even knew about the Ivies. So she said she randomly chose one letter and pointed to it, saying “That one”. And therefore she ended up at Hopkins. And there I was as well. So for that alone, I’m glad that I attended Johns Hopkins, the stockpile for those that initially walk around and lament that they had to resort to their “safety school”.

Hopkins, besides those who aspire to be doctors, is resplendent with dejected freshman scholars, who believe that they are worthy of Harvard or Yale, so why were they rejected?!!? How could it be? I don’t have enough fingers or toes to count the number of people I met while I was there thinking that they had settled. I applied because my sister went there and I though it might make it easier for my mother to visit her two daughters in one city as opposed to two. Also, they had a poet laureate on staff and at the time (I don’t know about now since I haven’t checked), they vied with Berkeley in terms of their creative writing programs.

I had spent a summer in Berkeley by that point and it had been traumatic for me (another story), so was inclined to accept an invitation to become a cum laude from any college other than UCB, but I laid it out for my mother. I will, I said, attend any of these UC schools or Hopkins, let me know what you prefer according to our financial circumstances and what you think is best. My mother chose Hopkins and the rest, as you can say, was history (mine, at least).

I had also applied to a bunch of liberal arts colleges like Amherst and Williams, but realized too late that I had already undergone the experience of living in a cozy, quaint New England atmosphere with a small student body; I had lived through it and frankly was done with it. But that didn’t come to mind until well into my senior year, way after the deadline for all the apps had passed and there was pretty much nothing I could do about it. So among all the acceptances (I didn’t have an insanely high acceptance rate, maybe 75%, I don’t recall to this day which ones denied me except for Georgetown, those bastards!), it cut my selection down to only a very few.

I think I would have thrived at a UC school. My family actually mainly hails from California when it comes to the American lifestyle; minorities are much more welcomed in that state than any other except perhaps, Texas, Arizona, or New Mexico. My love for New England was viewed as a neurosis by my family members, but I could intrinsically tell that I belonged in a much scrappier locale, one that embraced surliness and an ‘eff you attitude as opposed to one that promoted all encompassing love and compassion. What does this say about me? I don’t know.

But things worked out for me, they really did. I met my first love, who is still in the peripherals of my life these days since we both ended up staying in the area. I met two of my best friends in the whole world, Jacob and Nadia, who I keep in my heart to this day. I got to stay near D.C. and stay in touch with politics. I still meet new people and make new friends. I think California may have been spiritually healthier for me, but Maryland has given me a lot. And I’m pretty happy.

And I also ended up meeting my boyfriend, John, who I love to bits and pieces. He really is fantastic, especially for a person like me, who tends to be grumbly and reclusive. So as I told my niece, it all works out. Regardless of how you’re disappointed in where you end up for your college years, of how your life is unfolding versus what you thought it would be, years from then, you will look back on that time and think, “Hey, it all worked out for the best.” You really will.

How Did I Ever Date Someone Like Him?

Apparently this was my ex as referenced in my post. I can’t attest to it since I didn’t attend his school, but this was the kind of image that flashed through my mind whenever he described his glory years.

Have you ever had this thought cross your mind?

I’m a serial monogamist. I’ve never really dated much. I’m not sure why. Maybe my therapist can explain the causes behind my inclination to turn my back on casual dating, preferring to find and settle on committing to one person for a long amount of time. I’ve never dated a whole bunch of guys and then narrow them down to one. That has never been my style. I tend to build a relationship with someone or stumble into it and think, “He’s pretty cool, let’s give this a shot!”.  Although, to be honest, I am also a huge commitment-phobe. So perhaps I’m just a self-defeatist.

When my ex-husband proposed to me, he told me that he didn’t tell anybody he was going to (except his grandmother, on her deathbed, which made me feel sweetly vulnerable and claustrophobic and under severe pressure all at the same time) because he wasn’t sure what the answer would be. He said that he had expected me to say no or run out of the house screaming. And he was right, I tend to back away from proclaiming lifetime devotion to someone because I’ve seen how it can turn out (such as with my parents) and promises are important to me. I wish I could say I’ve never broken any of mine, but I have, and it tore me up each time. Even when I came to understand that when you’re a young chickling, you don’t quite understand how life circumstances can change and actually force you to break promises you’ve made for the benefit of others and yourself.

Life unravels in unpredictable, weird ways.

So I have given myself to very few people. I sound very Victorian with that statement, but I don’t know how else to put it since I don’t mean just physically, but in all other aspects as well, such as emotionally and mentally. Once I’m in, I’m in all the way.

One of my exes is not someone I would have ever imagined myself with; he had been somewhat of a football star in high school, desired by adoring girls and popular with the guys. At least, that is what he told me, and I believe it, because he always said it in a resigned manner, as if he was bewildered that his golden years were behind him. I didn’t necessarily think so. I always thought he had more potential than he thought he had, but nobody, much less me, could have convinced him otherwise at that point in his life.

I think my attraction to him was his All American Hot Football Jock persona, which I had never been drawn to, but also never had a chance to indulge in. Since, uh…obviously jocks that were worshipped in high school were never my thing. From my posts, can you even remotely envision me as a cheerleader-type? Obviously not.

But with that particular ex and me, we were also both going through difficult breakups at the time and you know what they say…misery loves company.

He is a great guy. Big heart. Great smile. Somewhat of a romantic. Quite surprisingly emotional. He is good person. Just not one that was meant for me. And I hope he never EVER reads my blog because then he would (probably) immediately figure out that this post is about him. So…hey there! If you’re reading this, my ex, please please understand that I still think of you from time to time, as in how you’re getting along in your life and hope you all the best.

However. This particular ex of mine just loves to post his political opinions on Facebook regarding a whole bunch of stuff, including his support of Trump and the current administration. He likes to reference studies and statistics, crafting his posts to sound like he’s a political pundit. And as much as I was fond of him…he’s so not. I don’t remember him ever bringing up politics while we were together. When did this happen? When did he feel the need to sound so serious and cerebral? I’m not sure. I kind of liked him for his despondent, Eyore-like personality traits back then, when we would talk about how the world had failed us. He would talk about his ex, I would talk about mine, and we would both agree that LIFE WASN’T FAIR!!!

So it slightly annoys me during the few times I find myself on Facebook that I am faced with his updates on how Democrats suck and Republicans rule and how we should all just burn down the current system and take extreme measures to ensure the health and wealth of the American public. And how he states odd, conspiracy-like theories of how Obama/Democrats have robbed us of our liberties through stealth-like measures and how life under the Trump administration or some yet-unidentified revolutionary leader would be a hundred times better (do NOT even get me started on the travel ban just imposed on citizens of those seven countries per the executive order Trump recently signed, and I say “travel” instead of “immigration” because apparently legal green-card holders have been detained at airports, WTF is up with that shit?!!?).

Those political musings that my ex posts? I pretty much disagree with most of them. And that bothers me, because all I can think is, “WHY WAS I WITH THAT GUY?!!? We don’t see eye-to-eye on anything in the political realm. Which is kind of important to me! How was I ever with him?!!? How is it possible that I ever fucked him?” (I apologize for my indelicacy, but that is truly what pops into my head whenever one of his posts I severely disagree with appears before me on my homepage on Facebook. I can’t help it.)

When I sometimes see my ex’s posts on Facebook, I wonder how we could have ever been together. And how that I could have let him into my life on a very private, personal level. How is it that we, as people, are able to enfold those we severely disagree with politically (or in other matters, come to think of it) into our lives? I would like to believe that if I had known of his belief in unsubstantiated Demmie-machinations, I would have walked away from a romantic relationship with him. But, honestly, I may not have. Because we are all human, and logic doesn’t always dominate our emotions and the wish for a sense of togetherness.

I think he was different at the time and there was lust involved, but more importantly, we shared a mutual attempt to thwart our loneliness and fulfill our need to have someone by our sides. And he truly is a nice guy. Just somewhat passively foiled by his own ambitions although, like I said, he didn’t need to be.

I encourage discourse, I do. I’m not shy about arguing with someone (if I feel comfortable with them and and consider them as a friend) who has opinions I disagree with and I love that I can do so, that we as a country try to stimulate debates and diverse perspectives. It’s great! I love it when I can engage in a heated discussion, walk away, calm down, and return to a lasting relationship despite our differences.

I guess that is why, we as people, are able to (not always, and sadly probably not even often) continue to co-exist together side by side, through all these years, despite conflicting viewpoints about what is going on in the world. And that? Is kind of cool.

Blogging is Not Easy Shit

I thought blogging would be pretty easy. I have a lot of personal stories, most depressing, which does not make for good blogging fodder for the general audience, but I thought that at least I wouldn’t run out of things to write about. But I’ve come to realize that my private turmoils should be the source of my writing, not become the writings themselves. And that has become the rocky territory I have had to traverse, dipping into my life experiences, yet tying them into everyday speculations.

Blogging is tough, people. I mean, even though my aim isn’t to turn my blog into a commercial product where I sign on consultants to help me gain more readership traffic, it’s still a struggle to come up with, every single day, a topic to write about and try to craft it into something interesting, deserving of attention from others.

“Come on!” I hear some of you saying, “That’s what you signed up for, if it sucks so hard, then just stop!”. True. Very true. But see, the thing is that for people who like to write, we can’t just simply stop. I can’t speak for writers (I don’t think I am one just because I have a blog, someone who writes isn’t necessarily a “writer”), but in my case, I suck at verbal communication. My mind is usually a step or more ahead of my mouth and I’m always trying to filter what is appropriate from what is not or weighing what is acceptable to say within social norms versus what isn’t. So I am apt to lapse into silence after being asked a question, gaze off into the distance, and try to choose my words carefully.

I know this makes me seem distant, remote, or uncaring. I’ve had to live with all those adjectives being applied to me although I don’t believe I am the last. I can be distant. Or remote. But I do care. About people and their individual struggles because I have been through my own. And that was no picnic. My life has never been idyllic or easy or serene. But that is my own burden to carry.

If I don’t sensor my speech, I would probably tend to sound insane, in as the words that I speak in a sentence don’t necessarily tie into the others. I actually used to stutter a little, from shyness (never EVER put me in a position of public speaking because I will completely ruin whatever speech you wanted to present through me), but also because I couldn’t form any comprehensible narrative that correlated to the images in my mind. I would have been the last person any debate coach would have wanted on his/her team.

So I usually fall back on the written word. I’m much better at that than leveraging my limited charisma to engage people. I write how I speak because it’s easier to put those words to paper than saying them out loud. My close friends understand, they get that about me, but others often don’t. I’ve come to peace with it because, well, it’s not something I can really change. I’ve come a long way from the stammering teen of my childhood, but she’s still oftentimes there, lurking in the dark corners of my contemplations.

Usually, my mind works something like this: “Okay, she asked X, what does she mean by that? Does  her question mean A or does she mean B? She reminds me of my friend Nic who would probably have meant B, but she’s not Nic, so what if I’m wrong? Thinking of, I haven’t heard from her in a while, I wonder what’s she up to? I really should touch base with her. Remember that time when we were walking down the street and XYZ happened? That was hysterical! So let’s assume B. So I should respond with ABC, right?” And by the time I think out the ABC answer, the other person is confused by my long silence and my mind is already ahead of my mouth so I end up dropping words (I actually do this when handwriting things out as well) or jump straight to a conclusion that has no follow-up whatsoever. Then I end up sounding wooden or overly analytical and not endearing or personal in any way, shape, or form.

It’s frustrating and somewhat alienating to have this kind of character trait. But if I don’t pause and take my time when answering questions or speaking to people, the outcome is worse. My boyfriend, John, has said “You should be a politician. Everything you say is planned out.” Of course, I would suck ass at being a politician, since one needs loads of charisma for that profession, which I sorely lack.

The upside to all this is that I am fantastic at keeping secrets. There are things that I have been told or witnessed that I have never revealed because I believe everyone has their right to privacy and who am I to destroy that? It’s not my story to tell, I don’t own it. Also, for someone to even come to the point to confide in me tells me that whatever they are disclosing to me is a big deal and they consider me a friend, because I certainly don’t initially appear to be a nurturing soul (Nic, I will never tell anyone about the XYZ that happened!!). And I don’t betray my friends, ever.

So it’s easy for me to button up my mouth. But my need to communicate has to manifest somehow, right? So I write. I pen long emails and apparently, now blog. However, it has been much harder than I thought it would be, putting my thoughts, my philosophies, and my reflections out there every day for the public. It really is quite difficult. Try to be gentle to us bloggers, because we are, in essence, welcoming you into some of our diary entries. We are in many ways making ourselves vulnerable to people we don’t even know.

What Do You Do When You’re Completely Wasted?

Do not. Even. Come near me right now. Okay, maybe just wait a few minutes.

What a loaded question, right? I mean, what haven’t most of us done while completely wasted beyond all comprehension? I have many stories (most too personal to post on my blog, hello!), but I think we all follow a certain pattern. I’m not alluding to all the crap most do, like stumble around in confusion trying to find our way to our car/house or flirt too much or suddenly decide that a perfect stranger we met that night is our new best friend, because “we get each other” or just plainly make stupid mistakes in general. Everyone pretty much does one of or all of that when we’ve downed one too many.

I’m referring to our rituals, because we all have one.

Some flop straight into their beds, only to awaken in crumpled clothes as they try to ascertain what time and day it is. Personally, I have to say that being in this situation sucks, trying to determine if it’s night or day on which day of the week when you suddenly wake up. It’s very disconcerting! Others sleep in their cars or seek refuge at a friend’s place or collapse onto the couch in their living room. If even a little sober enough to walk straight, some may attempt to drink some water, take Advil, and brush their teeth before sloughing off to bed.

Me?

I tend to get really hot (temperature wise) if I’ve had too much to drink. My body runs warm in general and it amps up when I’m tipsy (or way over tipsy). So I — and I know I’m not unusual in this behavior — upon entering my house, immediately begin to shed my clothes and then lie on the cool, welcoming floor of my bathroom. Not because I’m afraid that I will get sick and therefore need to stay close to the toilet, but because that cold tile is a godsend against my skin as I lie there and my body tries to reverse all the negative effects I have imposed on it. You can literally see my travel from the front door to the bathroom; there is an item of clothing every step of the way, Hansel and Gretel style.

Of course, my significant other at the time (I make it sound like I have had tons when I’ve actually had very few), will always try to get me up, saying stuff like, “Wouldn’t you be more comfortable in bed?” or “Aren’t you cold? Let’s get you all bundled up!” to which I usually respond with an “umpf grumble, I’m fine, mumble, leave me the ‘eff alone, oof! Snore!”. People usually then know to leave me alone because I will otherwise be snarly and combative, fighting them as they try to pick me up off the floor (don’t take that cold floor away from me and besides, I’m fine! I’m okay!).

Even if I don’t end up on the floor, my ultimate drunkenness remedy is sleep. I will drop off into a dead sleep for many hours, entirely unaware and uncaring of what is happening around me because, dammit, my body is forcing me to shut down. I have been known to fall dead asleep at a bar or club or in someone’s house, eyes screwed tight against the world as I sink into the netherworld and ignore everything around me and snuffle into oblivion.

Is any of that attractive? Or appealing? Hell no! But we don’t care about such things when we are in that condition, do we? We just want to do what we intrinsically feel will aid us in our recovery, even if it’s something stupid, like take a really hot shower while slumped down in the bathtub or stall. I’m not a fan of this remedy, I’ve never done it and never will. That kind of shit will dehydrate you like anything, but there are those who swear to it.

This is not a PSA about how getting wasted is a-okay. It’s more of a rumination of how people who have had a “little too much” deal with getting through it and to their sober stage. You’re in high school, then college, and enter into young adulthood, and finally become “mature” (30’s onwards) and hear all these theories about how best to prevent a hangover. There are myriad fairy tales about how if you do X or Y, you will feel okay the next day! Hooray!

I have found that all that, at least for me, is bullshit. The only surefire way is not to get to that point in the first place. Which sounds fantastic and healthy and very Zen until you meet up with your friends for a night out. Then all bets are off. Fortunately? Unfortunately? I don’t know. I guess it depends on how the night unfolds and what stories you have to relay later, once the bright light of day (always painful!) wakes you up into your everyday, sober life.

The Great Wall of China. Wait, No, I Guess It’s Now The Great Wall of USA (/Mexico?).

Look, how formidable! But didn’t it fail in its purpose? Just saying.

Argh! I hate that Trump is motivating me to post entries about him and his policies! It’s not just about Trump, it’s that I dislike espousing my thoughts in general on politics or religion since people then get all riled up and at the end of all the arguments and evil-eye me, leading me to think, “Um, did I just get totally judged by people I don’t really know on thoughts I have about things that are happening that we have little influence over? Can’t we just all GET ALONG and agree to disagree?”

So I will narrow the topic of my post to only one of his stances, which is the building of a wall along the USA-Mexico border.

Really? Really?!!?

It has been done. Case and point, the Great Wall of China. And it failed. Why? There are many reasons why, but the first and foremost is that people will do whatever they need to do in order to achieve what they want. Do you think that a stupid wall will actually deter people who are desperate, who want a better chance at life, from entering this country?

I don’t support illegal immigration, although a part of me thinks it’s ironic that there is all this discussion about it in our 240-year old country (a baby, really), when the majority of our population descended from people who poured into the land that we call America and decimated the Native Americans in our quest to conquer and procreate, thus wiping out the natives who were here for eons.

Now, only a mere two centuries later (which isn’t that long of a time period, really, if you come to think of it) some of us are clamoring about how immigrants will damage our economy and culture and safety of the idyllic and picture-perfect American lifestyle? Really? Didn’t we do the same? Don’t we owe the Native Americans to the extent that we should pause in our recriminations of illegal or even legal immigrants, to give some thought to the fact that this nation was founded on the ideal of numerous races and cultures coming together to form a new country, one that represented our idealistic goal of a unified brotherhood?

When did this change?

And you know, I would hate it if I was surrounded by people identical to me. I have said this often: “I would hate to be dating me.” It’s true! How would a person like it if he or she were actually surrounded by their clones? I would go insane! Wouldn’t you want to kill them, if not yourself? Would you like to be interacting with, for the rest of your life, people exactly like you? Wouldn’t it get boring? Wouldn’t you start to wonder what else there is in life?

I am all for legal immigration. I believe that America – at its core – welcomes diversity and encourages heated debates.

But the building of a wall along the American-Mexican border seems, at the least, very exclusionary and divisive towards one of America’s neighbors. Plus, does anyone actually believe that Mexico will reimburse us for the cost of construction? Why would they? Their government had no say in this decision, we would feel pissed off if Canada, for instance, decided to put up a wall then turn around demanding payment.

I personally believe we should devote those dollars to something else. Instead of directing capital towards a futile effort (a wall?!?? A WALL?!!?) to keep people out, maybe invest it in trying to elevate the education standards of our country or shore up infrastructure in ailing neighborhoods or increase our funding for the Endowment of the Arts or…well, anything else. Anything else at all.

Who Is the Last Person You Want to See Before You Die?

Who will you hold close to you when you walk into that light?

Several years ago, a friend of mine was fighting with her partner on a regular basis. She asked me a whole bunch of questions such as “What should I do?” and “Is this what I want?” and “Is this person the one for me?” and “Does true love exist?”.

All relevant questions. Really. And I suck at answering such inquiries. I don’t know whether or not I believe in true love. And nobody should ask me for any sort of romantic advice, given my history with my severely wacked out family and ex-partners. I am skeptical of true love. Heck, I’m skeptical of love, period.

But there my friend was, wrestling with her relationship and trying to figure out if she should stay or go. And there I was, trying to help. I knew what the smart thing was, the logical course of action she should take, but I’ve learned a couple years back that quantitative analysis in these situations doesn’t do much good. While we are in the midst of angst, it’s difficult for others to reach us with sensible XYZ points. Even if the tortured soul in question is someone like me, a person who is pretty analytical and emotionally shackled.

So I said the only thing that came to mind.

“Is hers the last face you want to see when you die?”

To me, that says it all. Navigate your own path pass all the childhood trauma, job insecurity, mortgage payments, required family visits, life checklists, and it comes down to one thing. Whose face do you want to close your eyes to, who do you want to be there with you in your final hour? Because that is the person you should be with. Who cares about what true love means or even if it exists? Or if the face that lights up in front of you when you close your eyes, when you envision your death scene is not one of a romantic partner, but a family member, for example your mother or father or close friend, living or dead?

I state all this from my personal perspective that love is indefinable. Love is love. We all love people we can’t stand on a regular basis (ahem, troublesome family members) and those we would never have expected to welcome into our lives, much less end up depending on for support, comfort, and advice. A minority of us, like me, define our closest friends as family because the ties of blood and consanguinity have failed us in times of  turmoil and desperation. Some of us love an unrelated person as a parent or sister or brother or even a child of ours. Some of us love and consider more than one person as our life partner(s). Love shouldn’t be doled out and categorized, because it is such a nebulous feeling, yet wondrous. So to me, the concept and assignation of love is fluid, is flexible from a conventional standpoint.

However, in terms of true love, I always boil it down to one question. Whose face do you want to have before you as you die? Who will ease your journey into the next stage of you life?

Who will you carry in your heart as you walk into that silver and brilliant light?

And in my opinion, the answer to that question, the frozen snapshots of the faces that automatically come to mind when you hear that question, well…? I think those are the ones who are our true loves.

Restroom Decorum. Do Not Talk to Me While I Am Doing My Business.

NOT ONE WOMAN pulls her panties all the way down like this in a restroom stall. Not one. Who the freak posed this picture and what does it say about them?

I know it’s commonplace now. Women do it all the time. I can’t speak for men, since I don’t linger around in men’s restrooms (thankfully, *shudder*), but I have been in public restrooms where women cheerfully hold a conversation while…well, doing their business. I just have to say, PUH-LEEZE DON’T!!

I am an extremely private person when it comes to that aspect of my life. I’m not necessarily shy when it comes to my body, I actually walk around nude in my house on a regular basis in my nightly wanderings when I can’t sleep (NEVER while I’m cooking or doing chores since it’s obviously a bad idea, I’m referring to the quick jaunt down to the kitchen). Mainly because I always sleep in the buff; it’s a habit I acquired years ago, so when I wake up and need to go somewhere in the house, it’s somewhat of a pain to get dressed in pajamas if I will only end up on my couch, under a comforter or blankie, reading a book or watching a movie and trying to get back to sleep.

However, as an aside, I am not comfortable enough with my body that I would ever wear an itsy-bitsy string bikini because then I would obsess even more about being too fat. And as another aside, yes, I do have pjs even though I sleep without wearing any, I consider them my comfy clothes for lounging.

Anyway, so it’s not a case of body-shame when it comes to restroom activities, it’s just that…can we simply leave each other in peace while doing whatever we need to do during those times? I mean, it should be an unspoken rule, right, where we all pretend we can’t hear what is going on and if we meet at the sink, we may exchange pleasantries and then go our separate ways? That we consider each stall as an individual silo of silence? Can’t we have SOME boundaries?

But, no. Apparently not.

I think it’s one thing when it’s just you and a friend of yours occupying adjacent stalls to converse, but it’s another thing entirely when you go to the restroom at a baseball game and there are women shouting to each other about a funny incident that just happened or even extremely personal topics involving their children or weird medical conditions. Why do people need to do that?

And why, oh why, do people need to announce “I have to go pee” as they trot off to the restroom? I mean, I don’t need to know that, there is no reason why I should, can you just please go and not give me updates on your pee schedule? A simple, “Excuse me, I’m going to the bathroom” will suffice, although I’m not sure if that is even necessary (the only reason I’m unsure about this is the safety factor, as in, “I’m off to the bathroom, if I’m not back in 15 minutes, either I’m suffering from indigestion, over-application of makeup, or unfortunately have been abducted by some loony, so check in!”)

What is with the advertisement, loudly and in public, of your bodily functions? And what is it with the detailed discourses between stalls, sometimes those separated by many others, in large, public restrooms where we’re all strangers? Can’t we preserve some delicacy in these matters?

I Wish I Was Smart Enough to Work for NASA or SETI

Uh…okay. Whatever you say.

Per the above, I’m pretty sure the main points are 1) have a brain, 2) use your brain, 3) study hard, 4) get good grades, 5) obtain the relevant degrees and certifications necessary, 6) network, 7) actually interview at agencies and companies in the aerospace industry, and 8) be somewhat presentable and appealing. Just saying. I’m not sure why you would need to read an entire book about it. (Sorry, Brett Hoffstadt, whoever you are! You are perfectly welcome to not read my blog after my total slamming of your book.)

Anyway, If you have read my entries, you would have undoubtedly noticed my various references to NASA and SETI. The fact is that I wish that I had the smarts to obtain an engineering degree and actually work for either one of those agencies (mainly NASA, but SETI would be kick-ass, too!).

If you google “NASA”, this is what pops up under their header in the search results: “NASA.gov brings you the latest news, images and videos from America’s space agency, pioneering the future in space exploration, scientific discovery and aeronautics research.” Yaaawn. Get better PR and marketing, please!! I almost fell asleep just copying and pasting that sentence. How are you going to motivate the youth of America to learn about science with that tagline? No way. So not sexy.

However, SETI’s? “Conducts scientific research on life in the universe.” Awesome. I mean, you can’t really get any more fantastic than that, right? (Congrats to the SETI web design consultants!)

To be able to say, “I am a rocket scientist” or “I search for extra-terrestrial life” would be fantastic. It reminds me of the That Mitchell & Webb Look sketch on BBC, where there is a dinner party where a brain surgeon says, “It’s not exactly brain surgery, is it?” to all the other guests, only to be trumped by an actual rocket scientist with his “It’s not exactly rocket science.”  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THNPmhBl-8I

However, I’m pretty sure that very few of those (probably none) at NASA or SETI says such things. They most likely have very specialized jobs which they deliberately try to differentiate from the others in their efforts to explain what they actually do.

I just wasn’t born with those genes. The highest I got in math was Calculus and Statistics and that was it (I hated Stats. And Econ, both macro and micro, ugh!). Most of my friends, though, are extremely naturally skilled in this area; they mainly studied computer science, a major which included in its curriculum optional or peripheral classes on quantum physics and all sorts of other cool shit.

A lab where astonishing science crap happens. Like what? I dunno.

My boyfriend in college actually said to me once that he was finally understanding how all the math he had learned throughout his life ties into the principals of theoretical physics and mechanics. Believe it or not, we were decently competitive with our GPAs and IQs (which we didn’t even know ourselves, having never been tested, nor wanted to be). I didn’t really understand that dynamic even then, since obviously in comparison, I was basically a dodo when it came to grasping what to him and my friends was elementary math.

Hmmm…one plus one plus one equals two. Huh. Doesn’t sound right. One plus one equals three. Wait. One plus one plus one equals two. Dammit! I already did that one!

This was much to the chagrin of my mother, who wanted to foster mini-Einsteins that would discover something astronomical, patent it, and then sell it to the highest bidder, thereby allowing her to live in the lap of luxury (sorry, mother!).

Instead, I was gifted with her strengths in the humanities, thereby steering me towards English Literature and Creative Writing. So instead of spending my time in labs striving to attain a highly regarded profession such as a surgeon, physicist, computer programmer or any type of engineer, I spent most of my time surrounded by piles of dusty books and scribbling really bad stories in journals. Watching film noir. Writing with a fountain pen. Listening to boring poetry.

I would like to point out that I did NOT wear black, smoke, and hang out on building steps ruminating about my bleak existence and indulge in young adult angst. I was somewhat of an outcast from the program since I ran year-round in cross country and track and all my friends were either science nerds or runners and swimmers instead or tortured artists. I don’t know about now, but back then, students studying creative writing usually didn’t participate in sports, because it was considered “mainstream” and doing so meant you “wanted to fit in” (gasp!!).

However, maybe NASA or SETI has a need for people who are good at writing or marketing. Perhaps one day, they’ll commission a brief piece from me about the importance of XYZ mission or ask me to pen a cute, short NASA-related children’s story. Then I could finally say that, yes, I work for NASA/SETI!! (<— BTW, highly unlikely.)