Monday, October 24, 2011

Signs

I'm a big believer in signs, especially in those that involve timing.  Today, it's all I can think about because of a realization I had.  I haven't talked much about the New Kids in a while.  The truth is that everything I needed for closure from my teenage years and subsequent with the respect to the New Kids happened...and I got closure.  I don't feel the need or desire to go on the cruise next year.  I don't feel the need or desire to travel the country or, in the case of 2012, Europe, to see the boys perform again.

And then the realization.

New European dates were announced today and were listed in an email with presale information sent to all fanclub members.  Yes, I will remain a fanclub member.  It's the lazy chick's way to keep up with what's happening if you can no longer be bothered to do the legwork yourself.  I didn't even scroll down the list of cities as I thought, "I'm not going to Europe.  Why do I care?"

And then I saw a tweet in my timeline from a London twitter friend who mentioned that flights to Oslo were cheap in May.  And that got my curiosity going.  So I went back to that email and scrolled down the list to find Oslo...and there it was.

Oslo.  May 14.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

The last 2 years I spent on a cruise with the New Kids on my birthday.  This year they will be in my birthplace.  On my birthday.  Are you serious?!?!?

I haven't been in Oslo since I was 2.  My mom and I have been wanting to make the trip back so she can show me what she remembers, but we keep putting it off for one reason or another.

You know what else happened? That presale was supposed to happen today and they POSTPONED it to later in the week.  Just for that concert.

I don't even know what to do with myself.  But I do know that if I was meant to be there, somehow life will put me in Oslo next May.

This is similar to when there was a one-time only New Kids Christmas show at the House of Blues in Boston.  I wasn't supposed to be in Boston the night of the show. In fact, originally I wasn't even supposed to arrive until a week later.  But then I got laid off and my time was a bit more "flexible" so the Boston vacation schedule was moved up. Even then I was supposed to be flying home the morning of the show.  And then a massive blizzard hit that kept me in Boston.  And the blizzard kept many that were supposed to flying in town for the show from doing so, and I was able to get a ticket.  But with that I'm not clear I'm not sure if the timing worked out so perfectly so I could be in town to see the New Kids...or so I could be in town to see another friend (an entirely different story)...either way, the timing worked out beautifully.

So here's the situation.  I may or may not be in my birthplace on my birthday next year.  Clear as mud. :)


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Sunday, October 23, 2011

I Don't Even Know What To Say...

Do you ever have those days where you can't seem to say or do anything right?  That's me today.  Of course the barometer I'm using to measure this is my mother...and Lord knows that on days like today, it's usually not the most reliable of measuring techniques.

It seems my mother and I are both having an emotional day and that makes for a very combustible environment.  It feels like high school all over again, and I'm realizing the very real possibility that regardless of my accomplishments as a woman and adult, that my mother may never see me as an adult.  She'll never allow me to make my own decisions and possibly the mistakes I need to make without putting me through verbal hell first, and I'm totally rebelling in  the adolescent conversation we seem to continue to have.

I fully take responsibility for my part in this.  I mean, I know I'm not the only adult daughter to turn back into the insecure teenage girl when her mother relives ancient arguments that never seem to rest in the grave of arguments past where they belong.  I don't even know what comes over me, but I find myself just being brutally honest about what I'm hearing and what I'm seeing, and I continuously point out the hypocritical accusations coming out of my mother's mouth.  

My mother:  "You are SO critical of everything I do!"

Me (eyes wide):  "Are you being serious right now?  Hello kettle.  You're black."

I don't know why I can't be the bigger person and just keep my mouth shut, but God she just hits all of my buttons like I know I hit hers.  While we are VERY different individuals in our views on the world and how to live in it, we are so similar in many ways too.

It's days like today that I realize how alone I really am.  I have my mother in my life, but I don't really have her with me.  As far as everyone else...well that feels all up in the air too.  How did I get here?

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Friday, October 21, 2011

Oh Thank God It's Friday Again

You know for all of the weeks that go by sooooo sloooooowly to get to those Fridays and fun planned weekends with family, friends or a certain special friend, this week seemed to go by super quick.  I'm not complaining, but it's one of those weeks at work where I could use an extra day or two so I don't feel so stressed about BIG IMPENDING DEADLINES.

Of course as a break from the busy chaos, your mind tends to wander to random things as a form of relief. Mine seemed to be on overdrive.

A sampling of my week of random thoughts:

1.  I could really use some coffee today.  I think I might break down and get some.

2.  Really?  My email was literally 1 sentence long.  10 words and a please.  How was that not clear?

3.  Ooooh cheese fries!

4.  I love it when people are actually doing what they are supposed to be doing.

5.  British accents are lovely.

6.  Does this chair make my ass look big?

7.  Why doesn't he answer my text?  Even just acknowledge that it made it across the ocean with a smile?  Like, how hard is that?  I don't need a manifesto.

8.  Wow those pills really did mute my emotions a bit and screwed with my body chemistry.  My body is thanking me for the break.  Can't wait to start prescription #3 and see if this one is a winner.  Third time's a charm, right?  And by pills I mean THE Pill.  I'm no druggie.

9.  Man, I'm horny.  #8 has totally worn off.  Of course, NOW it wears off. 

10.  Dear crazy girl shaking your ass on this BART train like you're up in da club.  This ain't no club.  Sit it down already.

11.  Ah McDreamy - you're back to "normal" and all Dreamy again.  Thank you Shonda Rhimes.  Now as for McSteamy - please get that man laid...he's still hot but you've turned him into a pansy and for him that's so not hot.  I'm totally objectifying here - but that's what he's there for in that show.  Am I right?

12.  Revenge.  Damn I love that show.  Maybe because I see a lot of myself in the main character...you know, if I got pushed over the edge.  Though I tend to rely on karma.  Karma tends to make things right better than I could ever plan.

13.  I wonder what would happen if I just picked up and left?  Just dropped off the face of the earth for a while.  Fiji sounds nice.  Or maybe like Bali or something.  Would anyone even notice?  I mean, besides my mother and my client.

Random pic found on a Google search


13.  Why won't this guy just send me the files already?  I know they're done.  What is it with men this week?  Are they just purposefully trying to be difficult?

14.  I need a nap.  Obviously.

15.  I kinda miss working in retail or food service.  It's the face time with the customers and their energy.  I feed off of that.  Maybe I'll open up a boutique cafe.  How fun would that be?  You know, if people actually came to it.  :)

16.  Ahhhh coffee.  Yes, I broke down.  Shut it.  It's Friday.  :)


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Friday, October 14, 2011

You Will Never....

No idea where this photo came from

You would have and will never see me in anything like these, even back in high school and college when I totally would have rocked them....though I did have some pretty short shorts back in the day.  Wow, I've become such a prude.


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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Take Me Away....

Today has been one of those days where I think - that's it, I'm booking a week at a spa.  By myself.  It's not that I'm particularly frustrated, pissed or overly exhausted.  I'm just drained.  Physically and mentally.  I feel like there's too much coming at me at once, and I just want to step out of my life, if only for a week.  Not only do I want to step out of my life.  I want go somewhere where I am forced to physically and mentally detox.  The first time I felt this way and actually did something about it, I booked a week at Spa Eastman, which is about an hour outside of Montreal in Quebec.  Yes, Canada.  Yes, the French speaking part of Canada.  I had only seen pictures (which look EXACTLY like what I saw when I got to the resort), but it looked beautiful, peaceful and well priced.  For the cost of my entire stay at Spa Eastman, including additional spa services I ended up booking on top of my package and all of my travel costs, I paid the same price for receiving about half of a comparable stay at a spa here in my own state.

That week I detoxed in every way imaginable.  Very little English was spoken, so I could zone out all of the chatter around me much like I do during family dinners as one of the only family members who does not speak Mandarin.  I didn't have a computer with me, and my phone didn't work well where we were.  Other than the communication detox, the first couple of days was a complete physical detox.  Between the numerous massages, pure organic food and lack of caffeine just in the first two days, I became physically ill and ended up sleeping it off for about 16 hours.  But I tell you, when I woke up, I literally felt reborn.  It was amazing.

That reborn feeling?  On days like today I just keep dreaming about what that felt like, and I desperately long to feel that again.  Like right now.


Photo credit:  Spa Eastman


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Friday, October 7, 2011

Stuff I Love: Popcorn

Let's get one thing out of the way about me....

I love popcorn.  Yes I know this is a completely random piece of information, but to really know me is to know this fact.  How much do I love popcorn?

Exhibit A:

Photo credit:  My dad

Yes, that is a HUGE bag of popcorn purchased at the old Price Club...the original warehouse bonanza of a store.  I was probably about 7 years old in this photo.  And yes, I did consume that entire bag.  By myself.  I can't tell from the picture whether or not I had braces on yet, but do you know what one of the big no-no's in wearing braces is?  That's right.  No popcorn.  I had braces on and off for 7 years (that's an entirely different story), and thus I had many emergency trips to the orthodontist to repair broken wires in my braces due to my blatant disregard for this no-no.  No popcorn?  Yeah, right.  

I had my appendix removed when I was about 11 years old.  This was prior to the laparoscopic surgery that they use these days, so I was cut wide open and have this nice not so little scar on my abdomen to show for it.  I had to wait about 2 days or so before I could have solid food after surgery.  You think this foodie-in-the-making was going to introduce her palate to solid food by ingesting hospital food?  My mom brought me lo mein noodles and yes, you guessed it, popcorn.  That, my friends, was my first meal.
 
These days I'm more likely to throw some popcorn in a paper bag or glass container and pop it in the microwave...and of course then drown it in salted butter.  In my opinion, if you're going to have fresh popcorn, there is really no other way to eat it...except to drown in it salted butter.

If I want to get really fancy or just develop a massive craving, I order a shipment of Garrett's Popcorn from Chicago.  If you're not going to make it yourself, by all means, get it from the best.  They make it fresh and ship it overnight so that you can eat it while it's still fresh.  My recommendation?  The Chicago Mix.  A tremendous mix of their CheeseCorn and CaramelKrisp.  Salty, cheesy and sweet blended together at its finest.  I'm not even gonna lie. I won't share my stash of Garrett's.  I may buy you your own if it comes to that, but you aren't getting mine.

This a picture from the last time I ordered a shipment...in 2009.  Yes, I'm way overdue for another shipment.  Christmas is coming up...just sayin...you know, for those that might be so inclined...  :)


Photo credit:  Me

And if I'm just plain lazy or running tight in the budget to order Garrett's?  Well my go-to store bought popcorn was this one:


Photo credit: Popcorn Indiana

I was living down in Santa Barbara a few years ago the first time I tried it, and I thought it was the best tasting buttered popcorn that was pre-made.  The key - they actually use real butter for the butter flavor.  I know.  Genius, right?
Well my friend introduced me to this popcorn:
Photo credit:  Frito Lay
I have to admit, I've seen it in stores, but I never ventured to try it.  I'm a Taurus.  I'm loyal to a fault.  And I was loyal to my Movie Theater popcorn...until my man friend placed an opened bag of Smartfood under my nose a few weeks ago.  And just like that I have a new go-to favorite that I can pretty much find in any store as it's way more widely available than my Movie Theater popcorn was.  What can I say?  I may be loyal to a fault, but I also value quality...and the opinions of my tastebuds. :)

Popcorn - are you a fan?  What are your favorites and favorite ways to eat it?

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Thursday, October 6, 2011

iThankYou


Photo credit: Jonathan Mak

I was sitting on the train yesterday on my way home from work, finally taking some time to scroll through Twitter, when the news popped up.  I had to read it twice to believe it.  Funny how I haven't been on Twitter to read much in the last few weeks, but the times that I do are the times when the information I need to see happens to scroll across my timeline.  Also interesting is that news you knew would be coming one day in the near future also manages to feel unexpected and devastating when it does arrive.  I am surprised at how profoundly sad I feel about this loss, until I look back and understand why.

I remember when I was around 9 or 10 and going with my parents to the computer store.  It was the mid-80's and technology was still just on the verge of exploding.  I mean, not all that long before we had just gotten our first VCR and that totally blew my mind!  We left that store with a couple of boxes that had a rainbow colored apple on it.  My dad and I spent all that evening and most of the next weeks setting up our brand new Apple IIc and exploring what it could do.  That computer bonded my dad and I even more as we played those primitive first "games" on there.  I still have that computer.  In its original packaging.

Over the years I moved away from Apple and fully into PCs as that was the platform used by my universities and subsequent firms that I worked for as I entered the workforce.  My love for the beautifully visual Apple products never waned, however, as I wandered through the Apple stores and explored the latest and greatest in innovation.  Even now when driving by the Apple campus, seeing that logo on the signs that grace the street puts a smile on my face.

The man behind all of this, of course, was Steve Jobs.  I'm not going to go through a timeline of his life and accomplishments.  You can read about him pretty much anywhere at this point - and you'll continue to hear about him as people take in this extraordinary loss - not only to the world of technology and innovation, but to all of us dreamers out there.  You see maybe even more than the innovation he inspired, he represented what could be.  He represented what was possible.  For what could happen if it never crossed your mind that it wasn't possible.

For inspiring the imaginations and dreams for so many, including this girl who hasn't yet done much with them, iThankYou.


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Monday, October 3, 2011

This

Photo credit:  image found on Google search



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Stepping Back...


Photo credit:  image found on Google search
When life is moving at warp speed, it's easy to get caught up in it.  It's exciting.  It feels like you're part of something bigger...that it's not just you out there hacking it out in the world alone.  It feels tremendous.  You start to believe that everyone you come into contact with has been placed there in your path to help you, to befriend you.  You start to trust in situations and people where you would have immediately questioned intentions before.  You start to let walls down.  You start to let people in.  You start to throw caution to the wind.  And why wouldn't you?  Good things and experiences reinforce the "good intentions" that are coming your way.  The right things are being said at the right times.  The right gestures are being made.  Before you know it, you really start believing it.  You've thrown a proverbial wet blanket right over those little nagging gut reactions and messages that are still trying to get through because they're raining on the parade that just feels so good.

I may have thrown a wet blanket over my gut, but they still crept into my neck, upper back and shoulders.  Apparently not only do I store my tension there, my pent-up unreleased emotions reside in that space too.  How do I know?  Last Friday I had a Thai massage after work.  I try to get these a few times throughout the year.  I get regular massages in general.  The Thai method, however, is the only one that really gets all of my tension out of every part of my body - literally from the top of my head to my toes.  It all gets worked on.

I expected to feel relaxed, which I did.  What I didn't expect was the crazy roller coaster of emotions that I rode on the entire rest of the weekend.  It was really surprising quite honestly.  I didn't expect all of the feelings that came pouring out of me.  Saturday I just felt like I was walking around in a fog.  I didn't feel sick, but I didn't feel good.  Sunday I woke up and all I wanted to do was cry...which I did.  A really good sob.  Usually when that happens I end up feeling pretty light and good after.  But I just felt spent.  And then I felt like purging my house...which I started to do.

Where did this flood of emotion end up leaving me today?  Well, I still feel pretty spent.  And more than anything I'm pulling back.  Taking a break from Twitter.  Taking a break from Facebook.  Taking a break from socializing in general.  After what I went through this weekend, I've obviously have been neglecting me emotionally over the last few weeks, months, years?  Time to re-evaluate friendships, relationships, certain decisions.  Things where I know I've ignored that little voice that's telling me to do the opposite of what I ended up doing.

Does that mean I'm going to blog less? (I know, I know.  It's not like I blog all that much now.)

I don't know.

I'm just...

Stepping back....into myself.


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