Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Two doors down from us live a man and a woman who leave their windows open wide when they cook. On weekends they have bacon. Downstairs there is a family who eats Asian cuisine and who have a red tassel with a Chinese character on it hanging from the ceiling. Then there are the empty units which stand quiet and still, waiting for new people, new couples, new families and confident individuals to come inside and tack pictures and memos up on the refrigerators. For the most part, aside from the sounds of utensils on plates and pleasant chatter over the day's events, everyone is quiet.
Our next door neighbor is one of the extremely quiet ones. We have actually never seen our next door neighbor but somehow figured out that the neighbor is a woman. Alan thinks that she is an entertainer of men, but the more obvious answer is that she is clearly a ghost. Strange noises will come from the other side of the wall, noises that normal people don't make. More than once now, I have woken up to the sound of someone/something in that apartment shredding paper through what sounds like an industrial-grade paper shredder. And who gets up at 7 to think The paper. I must shred it, now? Clearly, something not of this world, something... supernatural.
Monday, February 22, 2010
My first lesson in shunning variety came in the form of picking out what to wear in elementary school. Either because she thought they looked good on me or because she had a very curious sense of humor, my mom dressed me in her own take of a school uniform -- pink, purple and yellow sweatsuits (and not the swanky Juicy kind either). When I was in the lower grades, she would help me get dressed, pulling up my elasticized waist up and over my sweatshirt, creating a neat, tucked-in look. On days where I felt particularly sassy, I might puff out my sweatshirt a bit after it had been tucked in to lend the look some edge. Some days I would wear an all purple suit, other days I would switch it up with yellow pants and a pink top, but as sure as you could count on someone scraping a knee on the playground, I would be wearing a sweatsuit.
Although I find change hard, that is not to say that I am not good at dealing with it. In fact, on my resume, I will often list adaptability as a notable skill, right alongside my impressive ability to eat copious amounts of snacks. Once I had a boss whom I liked. I didn't know how much I liked her until she told me she was leaving the company, and I surprised even myself by bursting into tears. In an effort to console me, she wanted to know if I had any questions for her. I did have questions, but none that I thought she would understand. She wanted to know if I was worried about the project I was working on and if I'd get to finish it. But I really wanted to know who would keep a tube of expensive French cream on her desk to moisturize her perfectly manicured hands after every trip to the bathroom now? Certainly not her! There would be someone new, someone sloppier undoubtedly, someone who would lead in a cruel, tyrannical way. (Of course this never came to fruition, but it could have). When the new boss came, I adjusted quickly, slipping back into the same mode I had been pre-favorite boss' departure, and life went on.
Recently, I've realized that I might expect a boss to leave now and again, but then there are some things which I had believed should never change. But as I'm learning, aside from peanut allergies and the like, most things will change in some way or form. And it is an uncomfortable thing to have to come to terms with. Which is exactly why I must soon leave Alan for someone who values ritual and consistency above all else, either a highly obsessive compulsive disordered man with excellent oral hygiene and neat fingernails or an OCD grandma who spends every Sunday morning at church and every other free moment laboriously dusting her collection of ceramic pig figurines.
When I say the sweatsuit dress code started young, I really mean it started as soon as I learned to stand on my own two feet. See below. That's me in the middle with Denise and Nat. And notice how I'm the only one with my sweatshirt tucked into my pants as if my pants just might fall down completely without the extra girth of the sweatshirt to hold them up? My mom is such a jokester!
Thursday, February 18, 2010
As someone who is in her 20s, I could see how something like this might make someone feel uncomfortable, but not me. I took this statement to be an exciting declaration that I could apply to myself one day. It reminds me that now, at this age, decreed on a stone on a hill somewhere, there are indulgences allowed. Like if I want to lay in bed at night and stew and pout in my disappointment for a whole hour, I can do that. Or if I want to make considerable impulse purchases multiple days in a row, I can do that too. I can also spend lots of time soul searching in tea shops with Nathalie while wearing one of my many large, shapeless t-shirts because I am in my 20s and there is still lots to find out about myself.
When I'm older, I will just look back and blame it on being young.
Monday, February 15, 2010
Our friendship with Sarah runs way back and it runs deep, the way that most friendships do when you can bond over $1 burritos during lunch and drive in small red cars together listening to Blink-182. All throughout high school, we would plan. We even planned how we were going to ask Sarah's crush to the junior prom. I say "we" because Nathalie and I were written into the script. After catching her crush's attention, we planned to quickly hide behind her and become master ventriloquists. She would pretend to speak, while we, hidden behind her, would take on her voice and make pleasant conversation with him, eventually asking him out for her. He would never be the wiser. We were slick, we were, a well-oiled machine. Funny how in all those years we never really talked about getting married or grown up stuff like that, but here we are 9 years later. And now Sarah is about to tie the knot!
Saturday, February 13, 2010
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
In the bathroom, I began the routine that begins every morning -- the brushing of teeth, the application of face lotion, then concealer, then powder and then the dealing with of hair. Alan's phone rang. It was the hospital. From what I could gather in between arranging this hair over that, it seemed that Alan was being scheduled for
I could hear him on the phone, reminding the nurse on the other end about the thing with his intestines. Will that matter? he wanted to know. What thing? she asked because she did not know, had not read his charts right and had no clue about the thing with his intestines. But of course he knew, could not wait to unknow and so he explained to her the thing with his intestines, the detachment of them. Oh, that! she exclaimed, and as she held her warm coffee mug in her hands with the phone pressed between her ear and shoulder, she considered saying that they dealt with those all the time, those being the easiest to deal with in said procedures, but decided against it and said that she would have to consult the doctor and hung up. Alan looked at the phone in his hand, doubtful. I couldn't imagine a whole team of medical professionals not considering the thing with his intestines before calling him to tell him 'The end is near!" and "Rejoice!" so I believed them and told him "Yay! This is the beginning of the end!"
I slid on my skirt and before I left, he said "I'm excited."
Now, the lesson here is to never become too excited and hopeful anytime a medical professional calls you with news, at least if they are from Valley Medical. Later in the day, Alan told me that the nurse had called him back. She had consulted the doctor and they had new news, the news being that they would have to call him back. The exchange between the nurse and the doctor went something like this:
Nurse: Doctor, we forgot to consider the thing with the patient's intestines.
Doctor: What thing?
Nurse: The thing! The thing!
Doctor: Oh, right, yes, that thing.
Nurse: He wants to know if that will delay things.
Doctor: (rubs her chin, wipes off crumbs from breakfast) Tell him we'll have to call him back.
Which is where we are at now, somewhere in between Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum who are eating donuts and having lots of good laughs in their warm, comfortable, if not well-stocked, break room.
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Sunday, February 7, 2010
The lovely Irene and Sue
Roy got me this awesome set of "Blog Posts" sticky notes.
These will make writing inspirational notes to myself so much more fun.