2014

Here we are again at the end of the year.  A time for reflection and resolution.  Tom’s brother Luke said once that New Year’s Eve should be spent doing what you love and what you hope to do more of in the coming year.  He spent it making music in his studio.  I like that idea.  So now I’m deciding between going to Brooklyn and drinking with friends or going to a silent Bikram yoga class at 10:30pm that ends at midnight.  I guess I’ll decide tomorrow after work.

So completely unrelated…

I have a question: why does no one ever tell you that the birth control pill is the Devil’s venom? Specifically Junel FE 1/20.  Seriously please do not let anyone you know go on this “medicine” concocted by Satan’s minions in the depths of the fiery inferno that is hell.  I would rather get pregnant with sextuplets and have period cramps that rival labor contractions than ever take this emotional poison again.   If I had some more time on my hands I would spend it picketing outside the FDA to get this stuff banned.  I’d been taking it for only 2 months but in that time I 1) experienced the mood swings of a perpetually premenstrual 15 year old 2) got broken up with 3) cried uncontrollably in the bathroom at work on 3 separate occasions 4) snapped at and scared a harmless coworker for no good reason 5) refused to let my mother leave my side and made her play with my hair until I fell asleep 6) ate an entire cake 7) made a 4 year old cry 8) became completely disinterested in sex 9) began questioning all of my life decisions…if you want me to go on I will.  The worst part of it all was that at the time, I believed the way I was feeling and acting was really how I myself felt and acted.  It wasn’t until after I stopped taking it and felt normal again that it all seemed so obvious.

Apparently I’m not alone with these side effects.  Here are some user reviews I found online:

“I can’t begin to describe how awful this month has been for me. I have never had headaches in my life and now have migraines 3-4 times a week. Ever since beginning the medication my gums bleed during the night. I am an emotional roller coaster, constantly crying. I am constantly hungry and I’m a person who has a very low appetite most of the time. Sex is very painful when I have never ever experienced this before and in general it has caused constant vaginal pain. This is my first and LAST pack of this awful stuff. Hormonal birth control is not the way to go.”

“Terrible side effects. I have gained 20 pounds and have not been able to keep it off. I lost all 20 while briefly switching to another pill but it did not relieve my endimitriosis pain. I am so bitchy. I am a ticking time bomb. I cry for the most insignificant things and my poor boyfriend has to handle all of this. This is certainly the worst pill I have ever tried but I’m afraid that if I switch to something else it may be worse or I may gain more weight. I also feel nauseous and my breasts are swollen more days than not. TERRIBLE.”

“Severe mood swings/ depression. Nausea, my sex drive is crazy over active. But I’m breaking out when I never did before, I’m a raging crazy person that my boyfriend has already noticed a difference in, joint pain. It helped with the pain I got with my period, but it’s not worth ruining my relationship over. I wouldn’t recommend this at all.”

“Extremely moody, snapping on people for no reason, 25 pound weight gain, and the weight will not come off. I work out regularly and eat a balanced diet. I have a loss in sex drive as well, never been this low in my life.”

That said, I’m finally starting to feel like my normal, fun and emotionally stable self :)

My desiderata

“…whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should” –Desiderata Max Ehrmann 1927

When you think of your entire existence on this planet as a drop of water in the infinite ocean of humanity, it’s kind of a relief to know that nothing matters.

I’ve resorted to small triumphs like saving $11 at CVS with their ExtraCare membership rewards program to satisfy my former thrill-seeking mentality.

Nothing can replace the benefits of surrounding yourself with positive people.

Summer

It was the dead of winter the last time I wrote on this blog.  This past winter on the East Coast was brutal.  The term “polar vortex” became what was trending on twitter.  The streets in Westchester and Manhattan were so chewed up by the end of the season that gnarled hubcaps outnumbered cigarette butts on the sides of the road.  The city of Atlanta was so stupefied by the unlikely event of snowfall that over 1,000 traffic incidents were reported in one day and hundreds of kids had to camp out overnight in their school cafeterias.  It was bad.

But for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction, and this summer has been nothing short of blissful.

I fled the nest last month.  I had been wanting to move out for some time but thought I needed a teaching job with a higher salary first.  Finally I decided to play the hand I was dealt and get a place based on what I could afford at this moment.  That meant living with a roommate.  Craigslist can be a freak show but living in Manhattan and Brooklyn demystified the experience for me.  I’ve had nothing but good luck with Craigslist roommates.  Okay, so it was 1 roommate, but she was great and did not murder or steal from me.  I browsed the ads for a few weeks here and there but hardly ever bit because I had the luxury of waiting until something really amazing came up.  Then I saw the ad for what became my first Westchester apartment.

Sleepy Hollow is a quaint little town on the Hudson River named after the Washington Irving tale.  It borders Tarrytown, my favorite spot in Westchester.  There’s everything I could ask for within a 5 mile radius.  Actually, a Target would be nice but ya know.  My roommate is a busy dude and so far we have been like ships passing in the night.  We’ll send each other a text once in a while to make sure the AC was turned off or the plants were watered but we rarely are home at the same time.  He works as a freelance sound engineer and goes on tour with bands for months at a time.  I have my own bathroom and my own “wing” of the apartment.  It’s glorious.  I would have never pegged myself at the type to get excited over home furnishings but I’ve never really had an apartment that has been more than just a place to stay until I move again.  This one feels different.

So that’s what’s new and exciting over here.  Hopefully I’ll get back into the swing of this blog and keep it going.  More to come…

 

 

Nice Little Friday

Well I broke my own rule and took a week off from work when I had nothing planned, but it wasn’t horrible this time.

Rach and I went to an RJD2 concert Thursday in Brooklyn and it was surprisingly awesome.  Not really because of the music, because the only song I knew was that one from like 7 years ago, but because there was so much dancing.  There was this one little ADHD dude going around clearing circles on the dance floor and encouraging dance battles.  The thing about dance battles is…unless you’re on the set of Step Up 2: The Streets or the dope-ass White girl in this video, most people who engage in them are just overly confident drunks.  But that works out for everyone because overly confident drunk dancers are equally as, if not more entertaining than really good dancers.

I stayed over in BK so I could go to the Metropolitan Museum of Art on Friday.  I could spend an entire afternoon in the Medieval art and decorations wing alone.  That era of human existence fascinates me to no end.  Can you imagine living to see horses and people dressed like this? Badass.

medieval

Here’s a closeup:

Image

Nowadays horses dress like this:

Image

I got 99 problems but FOMO ain’t one

FOMO: fear of missing out

These years just keep coming faster than I know how to handle but I’m excited to start a new one as a 30 year old.

My early 20s were like a pesticides-ridden Granny Smith apple on display in the produce section of Shoprite.  Attractive, shiny and bright on the outside but toxic and disappointing on the inside.  I had an extraordinary lifestyle but I was a big ol’ mess underneath it all.  My mid-late 20s were my relationship years, which shouldn’t be the defining characteristic of half a decade, but for me it was.  I became more comfortable in my skin and didn’t feel the need to prove how exciting my life was by striving to be the social energizer bunny.

Now at 30 I’ve calmed down and respect my preferred lifestyle; which is being by myself and doing nothing.

However, I still can’t do nothing on New Year’s Eve.  I’m gonna drink my ass off in sequins and red lipstick.

Mudbound

The Hudson Valley is a beautiful, bucolic environment full of aesthetically impressive landscapes, Rockwell-esqe Mom and Pop restaurants and shops, and ubiquitous hot yoga studios.  I did not know until recently, however, that it is also host to a plethora of book clubs.

As I’m sure I’ve mentioned before, because it seems to have been enough of an issue for me that I took to the Internet to improve my social calendar, there is not much opportunity in the Hudson Valley for me in terms of weekday affairs.  I came across a local book club whose next meeting was to discuss the book Mudbound, one I had already read and felt compelled to prolong the effects of in that part of one’s brain delegated to the storage of once-impactful literature.

But don’t worry, I’m not here to give a one-sided written account of my impression of this book with you.  Much more interesting are my one-sided judgments of the women in attendance.

In my own experience, any time a group of women gather with the intention of discussing a particular topic, it not only helpful but essential to prepare and stick to a preassigned agenda.  Otherwise we inevitably start trading stories like the time our friend made out with Colin Farrell in Vegas (or perhaps Bob Eberly at the Fontainebleau for the sexagenarians+) instead of ironing out the details of the upcoming fundraiser to save the local Planned Parenthood.

So I was a little unimpressed when the group organizer had failed to produce a list of discussion points/questions (yes, I do realize how incredibly nerdy this sounds), but the topics of conversation were interesting however far they strayed from the book we were supposed to discuss.  The group ended up being about 10 of us, ranging in age from 29-75 (I’m guessing?).  Since the book dealt with the issue of racism in the South post-WWII, it evoked goosebumps to hear the 75 year old Tennessee native speak about her first-hand experience of this time period.  But then she began rambling about her husband(s) and kids, and nephew-in-law who works as a partner in a huge law firm and blah blah blah tell it to someone who cares.

A reliable source of entertainment in groups of people, not just women, are the 2 confrontational know-it-alls who will fight to the linguistic death in a power struggle over the possession of correct information.  I tend to side with the one who backs down before things get too intense, because I assume it’s done to spare the involuntary witnesses from further discomfort and embarrassment.  As far as I’m concerned, one’s engagement in power struggles and mind games is great weakness disguised as strength.  Eckhart Tolle told me so.

The book club was held at a Mexican restaurant, and I hold the belief that you can tell a lot about a person from what and how they order at a restaurant.  My family hardly ever went/goes out to eat.  On the rare occasions that we did, no one ever complained about what they ordered to the waitstaff or sent food back.  It kind of blows my mind that so many people do. Maybe this is why I made a terrible waitress for that one summer.

So there was this one lady who basically wouldn’t eat anything except lettuce and spent 15 minutes telling everyone why everything except for lettuce will turn your body into a toxic waste dump.  This led to another woman’s speech on her daughter’s autonomous decision to become a vegetarian at age twelve, to which I’m sure she expected the response, “Wow, what conviction and strength of character your daughter must have to make that decision at 12.  What an amazing mother you must be.”  I cut out meat for a year in my early teens because I was borderline anorexic and became paranoid after I found out how many grams of fat were in a hamburger, but I’m sure I told people my decision was based upon principle…so don’t be so self-assured, lady.

Basically what I’m saying is, it’s annoying when people impose their perceived superior dietary choices on those who never asked.

And I had a steak quesadilla, in case you were wondering.

Four hours later, we finished up and I exchanged numbers with the 29 year old.  And despite my wise-ass views, I was truly glad to meet these nice ladies and I am looking forward to the next book club meeting.

People Being Nice

Here’s a video of people being nice to counteract the previous one:

I can’t post something like this without some snarky comment though.  The background music. Is that necessary? Full House called and they want their teachable moment soundtrack back.