Books, Bars and Nonsense

I do this anyway, you might as well read about it.

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Oh, Antarctica

Take a second to marvel at how so many different, seemingly insignificant choices can shape your life.
For example, I chose to come to a coffee shop this morning- this particular morning to this particular coffee shop. Upon arriving, I decided to sit at the espresso bar instead of at a table.
Before I even did that, someone chose to put at old globe on the bar, and someone decided to turn it in such a way that what would ordinarily be the bottom of the globe, Antarctica, was facing me. 
So I found myself staring at a crude representation of our most under appreciated continent as I sat on pin and needles, waiting for a chance to fix some terrible mistakes I’d made.
My stomach is flipping over and my arms feel like they would detach themselves and float away towards the ceiling if I wasn’t constantly giving them a task.
I really can’t be sure if thats because I’m nervous, or because I’ve had 2 shots of espresso and a cup and a half of coffee, which is the most caffeine I’ve had since I moved back to Atlanta from New York 4 months ago.
While I’m sitting here, waiting for someone who is somehow very important to me to show up, and knowing they probably won’t, I’m reading F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “This Side of Paradise” and wondering how different my life would’ve been if I’d read this novel when I was 16 before “The Great Gatsby”. Of course, I also have to wonder if it would have made as much sense to me, because what the main character, Amory Blaine is going through as he grows up- what he’s discovering about how people are shaped is what I’ve been going through…but I have a feeling I wouldn’t have realized that while it was happening to me. 
I think that even if a person is significantly more self-aware than usual, that self-awareness grows continuously throughout their life, and until they reach a certain, immeasurable point where they realize that they will never stop discovering more about themselves, they are unaware of their growth until they look back and reflect on it.
That was a fancy way of admitting that I’ve been pretty arrogant about my abilities to self-analyze until recently.
I’ve also been pretty impatient with others’ abilities to self-analyze. 
For example, when one time the person that I’m waiting for told me we should take some time to clear our heads and really think about what was going on, I holed up in my room for a day and a half and was able to devise a life plan for myself that actually gave myself everything I wanted. And somehow, I excepted him to be able to do the same. 
To summarize, I’m no longer moving to London- I want to live in Atlanta and have a job that makes good  money so that I can fund ALL of my life passions, instead of trying to pick one and forcing it to become a career. And since making that choice, I’ve found a fantastic job thats supporting me until I make real estate appraisal work for me, I’ve kicked some bad people out of my life, reconnected with good ones, got a wedding to plan and finally taken up rock climbing. I should honestly be the happiest I’ve ever been in my life, but the thing is I’m not…because when I was deciding this, I thought that now that I had sorted out all of my issues, he and I would fall into place as well.
… 
Now that its a month a half later, and I’m reduced to posting pictures of notes on instagram asking him to meet me at random places at random times (I don’t’ have his number anymore and I’m too proud to ask a friend for it), its obvious things didn’t work out quite how I’d imagined.
I’ve finally realized that I was scared because of how much I cared about him, and how I think I rushed things because I knew there was this time limit on us, and how that fear made me lash out and say mean things to him, instead of what I really wanted to say: “I think I’m falling in love with you and I just want a chance to see if this will work”. 
The sad thing is, I’ve gone through this before, and even though I was scared, it felt easier- so much easier to make that choice! The choice to say to myself “I’m not giving up, because there is no life I could possibly live without knowing that I tried.”
That was the first time I understood why people do things in stories, like infiltrate an enemy fortress with only 5 people, no matter if its to save their best friend or the entire world: even though they know that they might fail, there is absolutely no way that they can’t try. No amount of fear can stop them.
I know it might sound silly to think of asking your ex-boyfriend for a second chance in the same way you’d think of doing what Captain America did with Hydra, but I did it, and Kevin and I DID give it a second chance, and then we figured out that it really wouldn’t work. But it was ok because now we KNEW.
But now that I want that same chance, and I want to fight for it, I’m way too scared, and when I first realized that, I was also angry with myself for obviously not learning my lesson the first time- especially when it worked out in my favor. 
But then I realized that maybe this was an entirely different lesson- you should never slack off when it comes to bettering yourself. No two situations are exactly the same, and you should always be conscious of letting yourself slip back into old, easy patterns. Because getting scared and lashing out was easy. Sending one last angry text message and then cutting him out of my life was easy. But it wasn’t right. 
I was cowardly and unkind, and its been a long time since I’ve behaved that way and this man was possibly the least deserving of what I did and said. 
Because he was scared too. And instead of telling him that I knew he was scared and that I felt the same way, and that I would be there and wouldn’t let him down, I told him I was going to stop caring about him. I actually said that. I didn’t mean it. And I haven’t stopped caring about him. 
I want to tell him that he didn’t let me down- I let him down. I want to tell him the truth that I was too afraid to say out loud a month and a half ago- I really believe that I was falling in love with him, truly, properly, like the way that only happens a few times in our lives, and I want the chance to see what would happen if we both admitted that we’re scared, and what we’re scared of is fucking up, and hurting the other, and having it be our fault that someone else is hurt. And of course, the fact that I’m not leaving the country in a few months might even the playing field as well. 
And maybe I’m not fighting hard enough, because I’m more scared than I’ve ever been scared of anything that he will absolutely refuse this second chance, because maybe I’m more certain than I’ve ever been that this second chance could be the last second chance I ever have to give somebody. So maybe I should try harder, instead of just posting an extremely passive request for a meeting by means of stupid social media site. 
I really don’t know. But thats ok. I’m still discovering myself. 
There’s a rule I came up with, the night I hit rock bottom when I was living in New York: 
Never run from something; always run to something.
It means that its ok to change your life, or try something new, even temporarily, but you have to do it for the right reasons. For example, I’m feeling the urge to go somewhere new in the world. Just for a little while. Maybe a week. But not to run away from all this- to shake myself up again. Because I think that I need that. The last thing that truly shook me up was him. And I landed on my feet and I made my life 1000 times better. But now that I’m stuck in this limbo of needing some sort of ending or beginning with him, this “happy” place I’m in just isn’t feeling very happy. I’m having trouble being the best of me, and its because I know I’m NOT being the best of me right now- I need to make things right, but part of me is too afraid to. I need to find whatever confidence, or push that I’m lacking. And while Antarctica may be a little out of reach for now, I need something like that…I need to see another side of the world, even if its metaphorical. I need to do something besides trying to evaluate myself in my head, because I’m stuck in a loop and its driving me mad. 
So the moral of this story so far is that always try to be the best of yourself, and always believe, and don’t be afraid to consider things outside the box. Or the Northern Hemisphere.
And one day, you’ll get what you truly want. 

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Back from hiatus, with Nonsense to spare…

(Since I am honestly at the best place mentally I’ve ever been in my life, and therefor am the happiest I’ve ever been, I feel entirely comfortable writing something that makes fun of myself for the one thing I seem to be exceedingly terrible at. I’ve been told before that some people actually think I’m extremely mentally disturbed and unhappy when I write things or say things like this in the spirit of humor, so yes, this little preamble is unfortunately necessary.)
However, the following is at least 98% factual. 
Why No One Wants to Date Me
  1. I just left the house wearing a “Great Gatsby” t-shirt.
  2. I am honestly stoked to own a t-shirt with one of my favorite novels on it.
  3. I was also wearing my Coach wellies, because it was raining.
  4. I call rain boots “wellies”.
  5. I left the house to get my mom coffee from Starbucks.
  6. Yes, although its only temporary, I am living with my parents at the moment. 
  7. She gave me her card to use, but I didn’t even feel like getting a drink because I’m completely exhausted and don’t want something to potentially keep me up longer. As in, past 9:30. 
  8. I’m completely exhausted because I woke up at 5 AM to go to a dirt bike race with another dude. Who is the “father” of my dog, who I still have partial custody of. 
  9. I know more about motorcycles than I do about cars. And thats still NEVER been useful to me.
  10. On the way to Starbucks I listened to a combination of Big D and the Kids Table, The Decemberists, the Broadway musical Wicked, Bomb the Music Industry, The Get Up Kids and some un-named songs off the mix CD that was given to me by the person who has sort of been shattering my heart on and off for the past month. (Thanks, iPod shuffle feature.)
  11. I got a decaf frappecino anyway. 
  12. If I can’t fall asleep within the next hour (probably because of the insane amount of sugar in this stupid frappecino) I’m going to return to re-reading Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, which I am honestly probably reading for the 20th time. The book is literally falling apart.
  13. Instead of trying to sleep like I should be doing, I decided this would be a nice little gateway to get back to writing random things on my Tumblr, since I want to get back into writing. 
  14. I’m pretty sure I’m doing Tumblr wrong. 
  15. None of these things actually bother me, because I love myself and appreciate my own weirdness. I know that if someone thinks they actually feel something for me, but don’t feel like putting themselves out there and taking a chance on a good relationship, they’ll realize they fucked up and will probably never meet someone like me again. However…I’m a big fan of Nancy Meyer’s films, so I think I’d respond pretty well to someone coming after me to tell me that they don’t want to let me go.
  16. Yes, all the “I am spectacularly happy on my own” empowerment goes out the window and I turn into a romantic, teary-eyed, girly mess at any sort of semi-grand, romantic gesture, particularly from a Nancy Meyers film. (Theoretically: obviously this has never actually happened).
  17. I go off on tangents…like singing the praises of Nancy Meyers, or Ebola Virus. I’m really trying to work on this though, because I understand it gets very annoying…the good news is that if I DO get into it with you once I’ll never bring that particular topic up again in rant form.
  18. Its taken me an hour to draft this because I keep getting distracted by Facebook or the unavoidable need to dance around to Katy Perry.
  19. …I’ve said N____ M____’s name 3 times in one tiny post. I bet pretty much none of you even know who that is. Excellent. 
  20. I’m sure I spelled “frappecino” wrong, didn’t I?
Thats probably enough for a 2 hour segment of my life. 
The good news is that since people just use Tumblr to waste hours of their life, I think I’ve just done my good deed for the day and can go to sleep in peace. 
And still abnormally early. 
And wake up abnormally early and go shoot guns.
Hahahaha.
(But really, yes). 

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High School Sucks

So I’m watching Easy A, which is a truly fabulous movie, and I’m thinking how glad I am to not be in high school anymore, which I’m sure pretty everyone sympathizes with. 

HOWEVER,

I suddenly realized that this is a totally FALSE sense of security. Lies, lies lies!

Because seriously, I’m just laying in bed checking Facebook, wearing a scarf that I’ve been wearing almost nonstop for 2 days, 

becaaaause,

one of my best friends who I unfortunately happen to love gave it to me the other night,

but…

[insert Taylor Swift song here]

he’s forcing himself to be with this other girl thats all wrong for him but of course we still hang out and have the best time and when she texts him too much I just throw his phone in a pizza box.

Also,

My parents still give me money so I can live, I’m unhappy with my body, and sometimes I sneak out of the house that I live in with a mother (not mine, my friend Mike’s) and get unhealthy yummy things from Sonic, which is very reminiscent of my teenage years.

So you see, the shittiness of high school doesn’t actually end. I mean, maybe it DOES actually prepare you for the real world…I feel like this is ground breaking, has anyone else had this bizarre and terrible epiphany?

Yeah, the only thing that changes is that college is cool cause its chill and you can study whatevers fun or practical, and also you have to get jobs with varying degrees of awfulness and support yourself.

The real moral of this story is that sleeping with a scarf on is actually fairly cozy. 

And now you know.

Here’s a picture of me being an idiot in high school. Because I guess Tumblr doesn’t work without pictures? 

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This is me when I write like I’m fancy…

I just sat down a couple months ago to see if I could still write properly, you know, instead of like a sarcastic asshole. I guess I can…?


If Summer was a deceptively seductive woman, infuriating us with treacherous days and luring us back to her with soft, lazy nights, then Autumn is girl with a mischievous fire in her eyes, grabbing us by the hand as she runs ahead into a cool, enthralling forrest of amber and ruby. But as we keep running, her hand pulls away, and she stretches farther and farther ahead, until at last she is just a dark shape disappearing among the trees…

As we are drawn deeper and deeper into the dark woods of winter, the northern sky grows more and more melancholy, the darkness closing tighter and tighter around us each new night. As I lie here, I can see the soft, pale purple light slowly giving way to dark blues and blacks through the odd gap in the blinds. 
Such a long night should be filled with the promise of potential, of the mere chance of adventure, of even the slightest flutter of something new and shining.
But I have been fooled often enough by nights like this- they strike a small match of hope somewhere in my chest and yes, sometimes the unexpected events fuel the small flame and I can feel myself outwardly glowing with the victory of something new and exciting…but these nights more frequently see me fade into sleep as a small pile of burnt scraps, too desperate to become something they could never be, drowned by a liquid fuel that comes in increasingly larger waves.
Thus, while my outside remains soft and moderately polished, my insides are eroding alarmingly quickly. Night after night they are bombarded by vengeful, corrosive tidal waves and too many fires, dying and turning to sticky, relentless ash just as quickly as they had flared into burning, passionate flames. 
Yes, for all the good that could truly come of steeling myself with a false-optimism and striding out into this chilly unknown, I might as well sit on my bed, eyes closed in determination, hand outstretched, waiting for something new to take it tightly in its own and lead me into a realm of new possibilities. However much like the fiery girl, Autumn, I would still expect it to eventually grow weary of traveling with me and fade away into its own newness, leaving me once again alone, in cold darkness, unwilling to lift my battered soul away from my bed near the window and out into the real world of limited possibilities. 

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The (super late) “Beautiful and Damned” Round 2 at Coopers NYC

Alright, its been a while. 
It didn’t actually take me this long to drink more and finish this book, it just took me a long time to sit down and write about it, but I promise it won’t take very long to read:
So as previously stated, 3/4 of the way through The Beautiful and Damned gets well depressing, typical, I hear, of all Fitz works. Its a little infuriating, but he goes through the trouble of making you care about Anthony and Gloria, see their character, forgive them their faults, but then he amplifies their faults, particularly Anthony’s, and you start to get pissed off. 
The “happy” ending is the most infuriating part and is very ironic— its like he’s revealing the moral of the story, but by revealing the fake moral of the story. 
So the moral of THIS story is that its a damn good book. 
"But I thought you just said it pissed you off…?" 
Yes, but thats the most basic way that you can tell its a damn good book: it triggers all sorts of passionate, emotional responses. 
Thats what makes writing art. 
Now for yummy things:
So I’d love to say that I did in fact finish reading at Coopers Craft & Kitchen (http://coopersnyc.com/?page_id=2), but I ended up talking and hanging out with my friend instead and I finished it the next day. But you’re going to deal with me talking about them anyway. 
Located in the center of the universe, and the setting for The Beautiful and Damned (see, it IS relevant!), Coopers is in New York City’s East Village. Its got a nice vibe, awesome local beers and get this: the bathroom sinks are in the hallway outside of the bathrooms. I thought that was pretty random and cool, albeit momentarily confusing when I exited the toilet stall. 
The other mind blowing thing I found there was the closest thing to Pimms and lemonade this side of the pond. Pimms and lemonade is a traditional British summer beverage consisting of Pimms, lemonade, and a variety of…stuff. Wikipedia to the rescue: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pimm’s . Anyways, I noticed that Coopers had a very similar signature cocktail called the Tom Thumb’s Pimms Cup. Once again, probably the only thing I could have found on a drink menu to keep me from ordering beer somehow turned up.
I still got a few beers though, and instead of trying several different ones I got stuck on the Brooklyner Weisse. 
Holy. Delicious. Weisse beer. Batman.
Insanely light and smooth going down, and then comes in with this zingy, tangy after taste that could honestly be described as a flavor explosion on your tongue. Sooooo good. Not quite like a traditional Bavarian weisse, but zero fucks were given by me. Seriously guys, get after that. 
They had several interesting items on the food menu, but we just split an appetizer of their fries, which I got with a side of tartar sauce, and they were rad. I would definitely go back here, and I will definitely have that Brooklyner Weisse again. 
Alright, THE END, told ya it’d be a quick one.
Cheers <3

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First One! The Beautiful and Damned @ Sap Suckers

Hello all: I came to the realization the other day that a big bulk of my Instagram photos are me showing the world that I am yet again reading a book at a bar in the afternoon.  I decided to turn this questionable habit into something productive and meaningful, so here goes!
I am very pleased that the first book you have to hear me ramble on about is by the incomparable Mr. F. Scott Fitzgerald., and fortunately its not The Great Gatsby. Don’t be fooled- I could go on for HOURS about Gatsby, but its the most common read as far as Fitz is concerned, and about a week ago I decided I needed to branch out. 
The Beautiful and Damned has actually been sort of an ongoing, time-killing-in-Barnes & Nobles-before-a-movie device for me for a couple years now, but I finally made myself purchase it and get past page 41. Its similar to all other Fitzgerald works in the sense that it takes place in or around New York in the 1920’s and is fucking brilliant. What I mean to say is that not only does he demonstrate remarkable insight into human nature on the subjects of aging, sadness and love, but he does it with the most beautifully crafted imagery and emotion. 
This story in particular follows the relationship of Anthony Patch and Gloria Gilbert, and you can really feel the mood of the book change as their lives do. It begins innocently and happily, with the excitement of being a twenty-something in the year 20 something, living off wealthy relatives, New York City for a playground, and falling in love for the first time. It follows very accurately the first year of their marriage, when they are still young, with no need or desire to provide for themselves, and slowly realizing the infuriating and endearing habits in each other. The tone of things slowly gets more serious as time goes on- they’re still holding on to their shiny lifestyle, but starting to worry about money, jealousy, and Gloria in particular starts to feel trapped within the life she’s created with Anthony. 
The real talent in the writing of this book is that Fitzgerald makes you feel the whole range of emotions that comes in a life- the excited delusion of love, the hilarity of your friend’s sarcastic quips, the unbearable feeling of being trapped in a life you suddenly don’t want, and the hopelessness the comes from realizing you can’t actually support yourself and might be slowly losing everything you love in your world.
Seriously, if you periodically stop and think either “HOLY SHIT THESE WORDS?! HOW DOES HE DO IT?!?” or “…fuck…this is very real and very depressing and I don’t know if I believe in love or true happiness right now…” then you’re doing it right.
I reached a particularly depressing part a couple days ago, and as such haven’t finished the book yet, so now we can switch gears.
Let me tell you something about the glory that is Sap Suckers in Huntington: its glorious.
http://sapsuckersli.com/?ni 
Their big thing is a constantly changing array of craft beers, local or not, and delicious food. Really, the food is amazing, and it always takes me forever to order something because I’m torn between getting something I’ve had before or trying something new. I decided today was a branching out day and I got the “veggie burger,” properly named Woody’s Vegetable Burger, but its nothing like a burger patty. The bulk of it is sautéed spinach, mushrooms, pepper and onions, topped with a thick slice of tomato, and all of it topped with yummy, melty fontina cheese. If that wasn’t perfect enough, there’s a little bit of that phenomenal humus spread on the giant, buttery bun. Obviously if you don’t like vegetables this isn’t for you, but if you’re into them at all, this is the way to eat them. 
Now for the beverage- normally I’m a beer person, especially at Sap Suckers because they always have interesting and fantastic beers. HOWEVER, by some weird miracle I noticed that their house pinot noir was in fact my favorite pinot noir to date. Its Underwood Cellars, from Oregon, and thats the only place I’ve ever had it. I even tried to find it in Georgia (which is where I’m actually from) but to no avail. So this was pretty much the only possible circumstance that would have made me order something other than beer Sap Suckers, and it happened, so I had to. 
Soooo…I’ll end on this, possibly my favorite quote from this book so far:
This is Gloria explaining to Anthony why you can’t really preserve old places or relics:
"Beautiful things grow to a certain height and then they fail and fade off, breathing out memories as they decay. And just as any period decays in our minds, the things of that period should decay too, and in that way they’re preserved for a while in the few hearts that react to them, like mine…trying to preserve a century by keeping its relics up to date is like keeping a dying man alive by stimulants" (Fitzgerald 1922, 166-167)
She was saying this in reaction to the fact that General Lee’s house was turned into a museum, and it infuriated her that it was filled with children littering it with peanut shells and everything was set up as a display, meant to look how it did, but obviously it could never have the same feeling and she saw no point in pretending that it did. 
Any thoughts on this? I think its interesting, but I’m not sure if I totally agree. Should I try to foster literary discussion? Should I not give a fuck? How about both.