So, this is my life.

And I want you to know that I am both happy and sad and I'm still trying to figure out how that could be.

Friday, December 31, 2010

resolved to come up with a resolution

since brunch with T and MP this morning, i've been contemplating a New Year's resolution.  

thus far, i've come up with nothing solid.

of course there are the usual, "lose XX lbs" and "find a job i don't loathe" resolutions, but i need to think bigger.  or "Dream Big," which was the theme of my urban family's New Year's To-Do List just a couple of years ago.  

the curious thing is that, back when life was pretty perfect and i had few to no complaints, i could come up with so many resolutions and to-do's, including big ones.  now that i need to be dreaming big and coming up with new goals and new plans, i am having trouble coming up with them.  maybe life follows the principle of inertia -- i.e., a life in forward motion tends to stay in forward motion; whereas, a life that has slowed down or stagnated tends to stay in that state.  

and just like that, my resolution occurred to me.  

gain momentum.  move forward.  stay in motion.

but first i need to find an outfit for a friend's NYE party, and i need to ring in 2011 with a bunch of great people, a little too much vodka, and maybe even a bang.*

*like fireworks, or whatever.

Monday, December 27, 2010

weatherford says...

We enjoy warmth because we have been cold. We appreciate light because we have been in darkness. By the same token, we can experience joy because we have known sadness.
Christmas weekend at home was perfect.  i got to see family members who i like; i didn't have to see many i don't like.  my family and i got to share the holiday with two of my long-time friends, Cassifrass and Kim.  i got a few nice gifts, including gift cards that will keep me in lattes and new sweaters for a while.  

moreover, i appreciated the holiday so much because past holidays weren't always enjoyable.  i used to dread going home for Christmas.  there were several years when i wished that i could stay in my dorm room or my apartment and share the holiday with myself.  no amount of gifts could make up for fighting parents, estranged siblings and guilt trips from family members who i didn't make time to visit.

so much has changed.  my relationships with my Ma and my brother have improved and have even become fun.  i enjoy time with them now.  a house that was once full of anger and bitterness is now a home full of love, a warm home that welcomes guests, both family and friends.  it's amazing and encouraging to see such drastic changes.  i wish i had known, when i was younger, how much better it would all get.  i'm glad that i now know to appreciate quality family time while we still have it.  

of course there were a few low points during my visit to the homestead.  for example, a lot continues to go unsaid between me and my family members, such as why i haven't brought a special someone home for Christmas like everyone else at the party did.  also, spending time with my cousin and neighbor, both of whom are only a few years older than me and both of whom have the most beautiful children, made me somewhat envious.  and of course there were reminders from my Ma that she'd really like grandchildren soon.  cue me pointing at my older brother, who simply shook his head "no."  not going to happen, Ma.  sorry. 

all things considered, it was a very lovely holiday.  one of my best ever.

now i'm back in Philadelphia, buried under 6 or 8 inches of beautiful snow, and enjoying the day off before i return to work tomorrow.  it's surprising how productive you can be without getting out of bed.  Mr. Finch and i are comfy and warm and surrounded by pillows as i write this.  what did people do before the advent of laptops?  

Saturday, December 25, 2010

brighter than yonder star

fireworks on the farm.  fortunately, nobody caught on fire or lost fingers, as i warned the family they might.

do you know how difficult it is to capture fireworks on camera?  i do, because i failed at it. 

thanks to Casshole for snapping this one.  the other 103484 photos we took didn't turn out well. 

Monday, December 20, 2010

maher says...

The irony of religion is that because of its power to divert man to destructive courses, the world could actually come to an end. The plain fact is, religion must die for mankind to live. The hour is getting very late to be able to indulge in having in key decisions made by religious people. By irrationalists, by those who would steer the ship of state not by a compass, but by the equivalent of reading the entrails of a chicken.
George Bush prayed a lot about Iraq, but he didn't learn a lot about it. Faith means making a virtue out of not thinking. It's nothing to brag about. And those who preach faith, and enable and elevate it are intellectual slaveholders, keeping mankind in a bondage to fantasy and nonsense that has spawned and justified so much lunacy and destruction. Religion is dangerous because it allows human beings who don't have all the answers to think that they do. Most people would think it's wonderful when someone says, "I'm willing, Lord! I'll do whatever you want me to do!" Except that since there are no gods actually talking to us, that void is filled in by people with their own corruptions and limitations and agendas.

i heart Bill Maher.  i really do.  

and while it may appear that my mood is contrary to the mystical Christmas spirit in which we all should be this time of year, i assure you that it's not.  after a lovely weekend of shopping for gifts, drinking whiskey, and spending quality time with great friends, i truly am in the Christmas spirit.  i'm just not in the Christianist spirit. 

so upon seeing the headline, "Religious Group Puts Out 12-DVD Series on Environmentalists' 'Spiritual Deception'" this morning, i became freshly enraged and couldn't help but think about, and want to share, some of Maher's rants from his documentary Religulous, which i HIGHLY RECOMMEND if you haven't yet seen it.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

post(ing) secret(s)

this is exactly how i feel about my job.  


Friday, December 17, 2010

quote of the week, thus far

We are all just one, small adjustment away from making our lives work.

from a movie trailer.  i heard it tonight and for whatever reason, it brought tears to my eyes.

and i know what you're thinking.  but no.  i had only had one vodka drink at that point.

at this point, on the other hand...

Thursday, December 16, 2010

i weep

i felt as though i personally was being attacked today as i read Gawker's article entitled 'The 10 Most Annoying Christmas Songs.'

despite being one of the best blogs/news media in existence, Gawker exhibits its scroogery and poor taste in holiday music today.  included in its list of most annoying Christmas songs are three of my favorites, which i am currently listening to on repeat every morning and evening as i travel from and to my home at the North Philly Pole: 

2. "Baby It's Cold Outside" (though i currently, and ashamedly, prefer the Glee version, with the ELF version, sung by Zooey Deschanel/Katy Perry, coming in second.)

3. "Last Christmas"  
4. "River" (because Joni Mitchell never lies.)

despite my love for favorite number 3, i admit that i chuckled at Gawker's appropriate synopsis of the tune:

Another entry in the "creepy lyrics" category is this song that is basically about date rape. A man is convincing a woman that she should stay at his house to cuddle and canoodle, but she really wants to leave. He doesn't think no means no and is basically saying, "I won't lend you a coat so your choice is to stay here and let me paw at you or try to get home and freeze." By the time she sings, "Say, what's in this drink?" we want to scream, "It's a roofie!" and call the police.

i shall continue to read Gawker, of course, so long as its writers stay far away from my number one favorite Christmas song ever:

1.  "My Only Wish This Year" by Britney "The Voice" Spears

yeah.  every morning.  'cause i'm still wishing.


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

letter to a friend

* * * 

Dear [friend],

How do you eat alone in a restaurant?

Tonight I accidentally arrived at dinner 30 minutes early. They seated me. (Sat me? I dunno.)
I sat (definitely not seated) alone for 25 minutes before T arrived.

I tried to relax. Tried not to fidget with my phone. Tried not to update F-book again. It was difficult.

I thought of you. You travel so much. I know you end up in restaurants and bars alone. How do you feel?  How do you get through it without feeling lonely?

Last winter I went to see a romantic movie alone. First time alone in a theater. It was a test, and I passed it okay -- once the previews began. Alone at a table for 6 at a crowded restaurant was less "anonymous," or so it felt.  Less okay.


* * * 

what about you guys? thoughts? 

not on the corner of First and Amistad, part IV

where did i find god today?

a man in the elevator of my office building with me this afternoon kept laughing at the podcast/whatever he was listening to on his iPod (it was loud enough to hear, kinda, and it wasn't music).  he didn't seem to care that there were several other people in the elevator with him, as he was so enjoying his listening material. his laughter made me smile a bit, it was so genuine.

i've experienced this before with books.  laughing out loud while reading a funny book in public should be embarrassing, but i never care at the time.  when i read David Sedaris's 'Me Talk Pretty One Day,' as well as with Chelsea Handler's 'My Horizontal Life,' i caught myself L-ingOL wherever i was reading.  i didn't care if people around me looked at me as though i were crazy.  i just wanted to read more.  that's a good feeling.

good for the guy on the elevator.  you go, boy.


Monday, December 13, 2010

i want a snowfall kind of love, the kind of love that quiets the world
i want a snowfall kind of love that lights up the sky from below
i want a snowfall kind of love that brings people to their window
i want a snowfall kind of love, the kind of love that keeps you in bed all day

most days, Ingrid Michaelson's voice is as close as i get to feeling any holiday spirit. 

maybe i need to go to Macy's every day. that always reminds me that it's Christmas time.


p.s. *please snow already*


Sunday, December 12, 2010

post(ing) secret(s)

quote of the week, thus far

a friend, after i told him that i had a good date the other night:

"Finally. I mean, I'm happy for you."

no hard feelings or anything.  he means well... 

and i think it's quite telling that my friends are so interested and eager for my dating life to revive.  the day after my date, three people texted to ask how the night went.  as if i've never been on a date before.  

should i be concerned for myself?

nobody has used the words "frigid" or "old maid" yet, but if this drought keeps up, i'd give it six months.


Tuesday, December 7, 2010

i won't even wish for snow , part II

for years now, i've wanted only one thing for Christmas.  i ask, yet i do not receive.  alas, i continue to want. 

thanks a lot, "friends."

i might have to go get that baby panda myself, using a disguise like this one:

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Sunday to-do list

  1. wake up early without an alarm
  2. feel glad i didn't go out last night
  3. make coffee
  4. drink coffee while reading a dear friend's recently-finished book (congrats!) on the couch
  5. laundry
  6. chase crazy cat around house
  7. make and devour grilled cheese on good, grainy bread
  8. call mom, talk about how cold it is
  9. download more F+TM songs, none of which are as amazeballs as Cosmic Love (see below)
  10. get chased around house by crazy cat now out for revenge
  11. wish i had more groceries, decide Hole Foods is too far to walk in the cold
  12. try not to think about work tomorrow/the week ahead
  13. yoga
  14. consider buying cold weather running gear, decide i wouldn't use them even if i had them
  15. call Cassifrass to discuss next weekend's visit
  16. take much-needed shower
  17. decide what to do with the evening and how many vodka cranberry ginger ales (the new house special this winter, by my decree) will be acceptable for a Sunday evening

i'm almost through my list and it's not even 11 AM.  

happy Sunday, y'all.


Saturday, December 4, 2010

outta my, outta my head

that silly Bruno Mars song has been stuck in my head since Tuesday's ep of Glee.  (Shaunice forces me to watch it.  i hate it.  really, i do.)

my plan for getting it OUTTA my head is to listen to this awesomeness on repeat:

this song rocks my world.

commence downloading F+TM songs in 3...2...


Thursday, December 2, 2010

shout-out, y'all

i'd like to give a shout-out to my girl B'Lisha Jonez because she can make a night of rinsing her weave the way i make a night of a magnum of wine and whatever's on DVR.


plath says...

Some things are hard to write about.  After something happens to you, you go to write it down, and either you overdramatize it or underplay it, exaggerate the wrong parts or ignore the important ones.  At any rate, you never write it quite the way you want to.

which explains my writer's block as of late.  in part, at least.  in part, i've just been working long hours and have felt as though i have nothing to share or offer to the internets.  i've felt, at times, that i'm drowning.  

in addition to that, and more relevant to Sylvia's words above, something has happened, and continues to happen, and i'm not yet able or ready to put it down on not-paper.  i'm going through something that i can't explain easily, as it's unprecedented in me.  i am caught in the middle of a struggle between my own pride and ambitions, and my happiness and well being.  

what do you do when that which you've worked for, and strived for, is the thing that makes you miserable?

in my heart i believe that discontent and sadness can be cathartic.  they can also motivate us to do something exciting but scary, to strike out blindly for something unknown.  sometimes it seems that the unknown must be better than the status quo, and i can't help but wonder if that is sometimes beginning of great progress.  

once i figure out what i'm doing with myself, maybe i'll be able to write it the way i want to.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

it's the season

today it became winter.

really, just today.  some time around noon, i think. i walked to work with a light fleece jacket, sweating in the unseasonably warm and humid air.  i walked home from work shivering despite my scarf and fast, butt-firming pace. 

It's the season of cold, making warmth a divine intervention.

i smiled as the lyrics came through my iPod.  i love this song,* and it's finally appropriate -- though i've been listening to Christmas music for almost a week nonetheless.  irregardless!!  

i have a case of the Christmas spirit.  i'm ready for some time at home (believe it or not.  mostly just because it's an excuse to take a few days off work).  i'm ready for some much-deserved gifts from my family.  i'm ready for a new year.  i'm ready for a change.

a big change.  

*does that make me an athiest? either way, thanks, T.