Friday, April 30, 2010

Bookworm Plea

I love to read. Love, love, LOVE it! There's nothing better than a good escape in a great read. You know the one I'm talking about--page turners that keep you up all night long because you HAVE to know what's coming next! AH! I love it!

Well, this year has taken me far from my favorite activity of reading for pleasure and instead inserted text books into my hands. I've been hanging on to some books I got for research purposes since February and just YESTERDAY turned them...HELLO! It's April 30th. Can we say, "Big Fine." Ooops.

Anyway, summer is fast approaching and my "vacation" is a little sporadic with only one week off in May before summer school starts and then about five weeks off before the fall semester begins. I've got precious time to spend on reading and I want to make it count therefore, I am asking for a tiny bit of help in finding some good summer reads.

With that being said, I'll go ahead and let you know what kind of books I enjoy reading. Last summer I devoured every book within the Sookie Stackhouse series (Yes, "True Blood" is based off a book series and what do you know?! They're SO much better than the show. Less pornographic and the characters are much more intriguing.) Prior to that I was a Janet Evanovich fiend and I've read almost every one of her books (PS--I STILL don't believe Katherine Heigle will be able to pull off a decent Stephanie Plum. Just don't see it, but she might prove me wrong.) Enjoyed some of Jodi Piccoults, but those can be a bit heavy from time to time.

I'm looking for something quirky, non-girly, and definitely different. I love humor and bits of comedy. I cannot stand this book I'm suffering through now, Something Borrowed, by Emily Griffin. I can't seem to understand how it's going to end well...the lead character is vain, completely self-obsessed with being wanted for her beauty and amazing bedroom skills and somehow manipulates people into wanting to be her best friend/boyfriend/lover/fiancee/what have you.

Are you gagging now?

Yeah, me, too. Anyway, I'd much prefer a read closer to, Gone With the Wind or The Ya-Ya Sisterhood or even a fantasy novel--Yes, I read the Twilight series and way before the big craze, might I add. I tried to sell the novel to friends before it was on the map and no one believed me it was actually that good. So was The Host.

It sounds picky and my tastes are varied, but I know there have to be other novels with more substance to them than True Confessions of a Shop-a-holic type reads.

I'm begging, please save me from picking up another one of these gosh-awful books and point me in the direction of an author worth their salt. It would be much appreciated from this avid bookworm!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Make-up on Elm Street

Ah spring time! There are so many wonderful things to look forward to at the end of the school year including what most young ladies in high school are super excited for: Prom.

It's supposed to be a night to remember in that perfect dress and all! Oh, mine was a night to remember all right.

We had two big dances a year at our school, not including prom which is really the last guaranteed time I had to dress up and go out. To me, I was over'd the big dance thing ("Over'd"--the feeling of being finished or through). Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed getting dressed up, but there was always the reality part of these dances that a girl had to work with.

For example, finding a date. High school boys--I swear--they just don't know how to talk to girls. I had been asked approximately TWO times out of the TEN dances I attended from the time I was 13 until I graduated. One of which I had to ask my boyfriend to ask me just so I could say I'd been asked by a boy--patheic, right?

In any case, I was that girl that always asked my dates. Never have I ever had a problem asking a boy to a dance (or on a date) because to me, if I wanted to go with someone, I better jump on that before someone else did! And I sure as heck wasn't waiting around for some sissy guy to finally get up the courage to say, "Hey, you wanna go?"

There was one year I went stag in an awesome black pant suit--ooh, I felt hot. Shiny black, halter top in my black high heels--I felt like one sophisticated woman in that outfit. That was one year I said, "To hell with asking boys! I don't need 'em!" Ooh, I felt so daring. And then the I had the nicest guy walk me in and buy my ticket--my Daddy. What a sweet man. You know, they say, "The only man a girl can depend on is her daddy." (Grease anyone?)

Anyway, the date issue was a main source of stress and then of course was the dress, the dinner, the after plans, yadda yadda yadda. It was all fun and I enjoyed all my dances, but there are two particular dances that were the most special to me.

The first was my freshman winter formal, Colonel Ball, where I went my first boyfriend. If ever a girl has a Cinderella dance, this was the one. I wore this beautiful gold, champagne colored Jessica McClintock, a treasure I found at a smashing good price. My make-up was pretty, I got to ride in a limo with beautiful flowers in my hands and wonderful guy on my arm. 14 years old and so in puppy-love with my then boyfriend, I could have worn a trashbag and walked all the way there, it didn't matter; it was because of who I was with and how much fun we had together that made it so wonderful.

The second dance was my prom, a true nightmare with a happy ending. First of all, I did not care about the prom. Let's just begin that. Second, I did not have a date. Asked a guy a guy friend who not only shot me down to our 8th grade dance, but shot me down for the prom, too. Groovy. Never fear, my wonderful friend, Michael, came to my rescue--he was an old theater friend and in his first year as a dance major at SMU. When I thought to ask Michael, I knew I'd had a fabulous time!

So the day of the prom arrives--whatever, I think. Oh negativity, you came back to bite me in the butt!

The first item on my list of to-do's for the day was to get my make-up done...and so the nightmare begins.

I get to the make-up counter. I always have my make-up done, one less hassle for the day. Come to find out, my standard artist had to leave because her mother died. I kid you not, her mother died that morning and she had to leave work. OK, i totally understand that one, but I have no one as a back-up. Not a soul I trusted with a make-up wand to beautify this face for an evening of glamour. So I scope out the other ladies around, seeing which artist has great make-up of their own. I pick a nice younger lady, whom I've never had the pleasure of working with before. Can we say "big mistake?"

Things are going fairly well, but it appears she's kinda plastering on the eye make-up a little dark--I don't usually wear black. Then she remarks on how tan I look. "Oh," I exclaim, "I've been doing mystic-tan and it's worked out really well for me! I'm such a fair skinned person, I own the lightest shade in your foundation colors." She tells me I look fabulous then proceeds to prance off only to return with TONS of dark shades of powders and foundations. And for some reason she starts on my foundation AFTER my eyes. Mmk, she's got her own system, whatev. I don't have worry about doing it later so I don't bother speaking up. Second big mistake.

My lady flounces off to go ring me up for the lipstick I bought when I spot a friend from a across the store at another make-up counter. I holler at her and then I see her face. The shock, the horror, the awe in my friend's eyes which are about shoot out of her head.

"Oh...gah....Hey Julie! Your make-up is...uh....its a...dark.....See ya!" There she goes sprinting off like she's running for her life. Well, that was odd.

Not exactly the reaction one would hope to recieve upon debuting their newly painted face so I immediately reach for a mirror. Should have known there was something terribly wrong when my make-up lady kept moving mirrors out of my reach because this is what I had staring at me in the mirror:

"AHH!" Oh I screamed. In the store and loudly. I LOOKED LIKE AN OOMPA-LOOMPA! How could I not be so shocked? Can you see the caked on make-up?! I was a walking mannequin! What's worse is as I was leaving, I had to walk through the children's section and witness the little tikes hiding behind their mothers, pointing and loudly announcing the presence of a freak with an orange face. This picture, this documentation of my humiliated face is an attmept of me NOT crying (because, as my mother said, it would only make things worse.).


I race home in a panic, what the heck am I going to do? I can't take off the base because then the eyes would be look like big ol' black splotches on my face. I didn't have enough time to re-do it all, my date was going to be there in like an hour. So Mom and Sarah are on me with kleenex trying desperately trying to dust off the coating of orange powder the insane make-up artist thought would be appropriate. Idiot woman. I felt like a package of Mac & Cheese--all I needed was to add water for instant cheesy sauce.

Meet Jannquia, my alter ego. She comes out to hang every now and again--this was her big debut. She wore her good t-shirt and even did her "hura" for us.

I got dressed, tried to fix my hair into something other than a rat's nest, and my date shows up. I open the door, Michael's there with corasge in hand and I see him waving goodbye to his car. Waving goodbye to his father. Odd, right? The car is leaving with his father in it who drove him to my house and there it goes, down the street. The next words I hear out of his mouth are, "Hey, so my brother wrecked his car and is using mine so my dad had to bring me. You don't mind driving, do ya?"

Ga-gung. My heart just stopped--drive myself to the prom. OK, I consider myself an independent women. Sure, I got my own date and am about to suffer through the humiliation of going to my prom with a now only semi-orange face. Why not finish it off and drive myself to the prom as well? Swell.

I hear myself say "No problem, hang on." Calmly I walk back to my parents room and say, "Dad, I have to drive myself to the prom. Can you help me clean out my car?" My parents just stare at me with their mouths gaping open as I leave the room. I think they were more shocked at how calm I was about it all.

Here we go, headed off in my purple carriage!

I drove myself to the prom in my purple camry. Not even washed--that's the ONE thing guys have to do. That's the ONE thing they spend hours doing, taking care of the car. I should have known when I asked a dancer to go with me that the transportation would be the least of his worries. Although he did look rather dapper for the night. Thank goodness one of us looked decent.

A pink dress and orange skin--if I were a blonde I would have looked like a fried Malibu Barbie!

Thank heaven "Big Sister's are always there!" Please note my skin color compared to her WHITE sweater...

We took pictures with friends, got lost to the dance, and somehow made it there in one piece. The night started off on the completely wrong foot, but it really did turn around. Remember how I said it was one of my second best dances? Well, that's because everything after was so much better--I swear, I ended up having a better time than most of my friends.

See, here he's saying, "Yeah, we're cool--orange date and all!"

Michael and I devoured the buffet table after creating a plan of attack to hit every cuisine available. We made our way onto the dance floor where we stayed pretty much all night long and only took a breather to have our palms read while sampling the chocolate fountain. Scoped out the cute boys in the room, but I think my date had more with that than I did. Afterwards we headed to my friend's lake house for the night and had an absolute blast with a fun group of people.

Getting to the prom might have been disasterous, horrible even, but it got to the point of, "who cares?!" We hopped out on the dance floor, cut us a rug shaking our groove thang's and had a heck of time just having fun!

I'm not saying I ever want to have a repeat of the grotesque makeover experience, but I sure am glad how it turned out.

Also learned a valuable trick that, ladies, I hope you all hang on to after reading this post. Jannequia says:

"Less is more, honey child! Mhmm!"

Prop Projects

Earlier this semester I had my first taste of choreographing using props and for some masochistic reason I decided to use props again for my suite in Choreography. Let me tell you what a challenge this is. Somehow, you have to take an ordinary item, create movement with it and voila! You have yourself a prop dance!

OK--couple quick things to keep in mind. When the idea of having to dance with a prop comes to mind, suddenly you don't even know how to use said object for its original purpose any more. Take for instance a mirror, something of which I am working with right now. I pick up and the mirror and nothing. What the heck does a person do with a hand mirror? I don't even remember how I'm supposed hold the dang thing, let alone twirl around with it.

Once you've re-acclimated yourself with said object (Oh, that's what a mirror is for!!), you then have to figure how you would creatively move with it, hold it, etc. Try to do this without knocking yourself with the prop as they may be made of hard materials thus leaving bruises on your body. Contecting a mirror with your forehead is not going to help pull you out of the choreography block you're in. Owie.

Then you have to figure out how to get rid of the prop from your dancers' hands if you wish for them to dispose of prop half-way through the number. Not as easy as one thinks because things like mirrors can't be thrown or even rolled off stage like a hula hoop or a ball. See the predicament that props can create?

Not to mention the fact that they have to carted around from car to studio, broken down if need be and then returned to the car. It's a bit like having to move. You set up camp in your studio for the duration of your rehearsal and then pack up, head back to the homestead with all your belongings like the bag woman I've become. Although, I have to say, I'm a master when it comes to carrying massive amounts of junk. I can carry about four bags of groceries on each arm--how's that for a workout plan?!

I'm certainly learning the ropes when it comes to prop dances. My suite this semester has included a number of items including a rolling garment rack with a curtain. I've spoken of this curtain in a previous post, trying to figure out a way to keep it still. Well, I found the answer in masking tape.

That's right, I taped the darn wheels down. Call me crazy, but I was a desperate woman to keep that goofy thing from moving around for ONE entrance and be darned if I was going to spend tons of money on a ten dollar rack. So I taped it down. And no one ever has to know...with the exception of anyone who read this odd blog today.

And these mirrors I speak of, I had to paint them so they'll all be one color and came to the conclusion to use spray paint. I wouldn't necessarily call this my first time using spray paint but it certainly is my first time having to paint my own props...that's a horse of a different color if you think about it. Let's just say it's a good thing no one is looking up close at these suckers.

I'm of the mindset of "let's just get it done" and I tend to get impatient with things like paint that take forever and a day to dry. It's a miracle when I do my nails and there's not a smudge on there cause I'm usually the person that paints toes and then shoves my feet into my shoes or better yet, paints my finger nails and goes to do laundry. Explain to me why I wasted ten minutes on my nails only to ruin them in less than five seconds afterwards? Impatience, that's all. I can't help it, it's a natural feeling to hate waiting--that prevents me from doing something else fun.

I spray painted the backs of the mirrors, even bought glittered paint to go over and boy, did those mirrors looks flawless! At least the back did....because when I flipped over to do the front, I taped the mirrors so they wouldn't be painted. Yeah, I was a little sloppy in the taping job...but no one sees that part anyway. Goodness help me if I ever paint my house, I'll probably miss a whole wall then try to put a piece of furniture in front and say "Oh, no one will notice!"

This is all good practice considering I'm thinking of using a type of prop for my thesis in the fall--oh and I start that lovely project in approximately 22 days (20 until my birthday, 15 until I head to FL and 10 until I get home...I'm not really keeping close count though). I'm excited though. EXTREMELY nervous about it, but excited nonetheless. There's something unexplainable about seeing your vision come to life right out of your imagination and onto the stage so I am looking forward to this next educational adventure.

I'm also looking forward to some down time to rejuvenate my creative mind before I get started--come on inspiration, hit me with some dynamic ideas! Until then, I'll just keep trudging along for this final week of class.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Dream a Little Dream

Some things should never be done right before one sleeps. For example, never try to watch some creepy show before bedtime. I end up flipping on the tube late, late at night before I go to bed to have something--ANYTHING--different to listen to other than history of American dance or the sounds of "Strongest Suit" playing on repeat over and over...for the love of all things sacred, Elton John, did that song have to be so catchy?!

(My Choreography II Presentation is a suite of two dances connected with a seamless segue, one of which is "Strongest Suit" that connects to the first number's storyline.)

Anyway, my sleeping habits have been all sorts of whacked this semester, and blame the TV for the latest ones. Prior to all that though, I first was having nightmares about choreography around beginning of the year. Not just any choreography, but TAP choreography. Oh lordy, lordy, people. I've spent this entire semester trying to overcome thish hurdle in learning to love tap. It's fun, I love watching it and I am a big fan of the paradiddle step *Ask for instructions of how to execute the paradiddle step if desired* HOWEVER, it is not my strongest suit (hahaha, get it?) in dance.

I was thrown into fits of frustration last summer when I had to tackle tap pedagogy--doesn't help that I didn't really know what most of the steps were called. I have always watched, listened, and the mimicked what I saw. Sometimes it works and sometimes it does not. Somehow I made it out alive and did, in fact, learn so much in the process. There's something about having to teach people a subject that suddenly makes it click more for you,t he teacher.

I digress--the tap choreography actually comes in to play with these nightmares I've been having, heavily contributing to my loony state of being these past few months. Choreography II had us exploring tap choreography in class and out of class to the point at which I would close my eyes and dream of nothing but my feet flying around trying desperately to make sounds. Or I would dream I was choreographing for my professors and they all failed me, the choreo and tapping was so bad.

The worst by far is the continuous nightmare I've had since I was in high school: My Dance Hell Hole. In this dream I fall into a cycle where I am in rehearsals, dancing late in night (or in the wee early hours of the morning). I get so tired that I lay my head down to "sleep" where I then "dream" about being home (This is a bit complicated, but when I "sleep" in my dream, I actually wake up in real life to see my room, but I'm so completely out of it that I don't fully wake-up. It's more of a dream/wake state. Totally bizarre.). This continues on about five or six times throughout my night making my next morning not so super fun...not even a pot of coffee can help kick the drowsy state I'm in.

Once we finished the tap segment of Choreo II, the tap nightmares stopped and then I just started dreaming about dancing which usually entails me actually dancing in my sleep. Turns, battements, and all, my legs just start a going and I'm twirling around until I end up all sorts of tangled in my sleep. So ridiculous.

Well, now my dreams have passed the dance stage (for now) and have moved into a darker territory of my imagination. Due to all these crime shows, horror murder stories, I've entered these chilling dreams where I wake up to the sound of keys jingling outside my door. Then I hear the lock turn.

*Side note, I sleep with my French bedroom doors closed. Just a habit I got into in high school; having the door shut is a mental reminder my day has ended, closed. Done. M'kay...back to story, go!*

Someone comes into my apartment and I'm lying there awake, too scared to move because I'm afraid they'll find me, whoever they is. (Really, who waits around for someone to find them, anyway? I mean, I could easily hide under the bed. I'm not even brave in my dreams for heaven's sake!) It is completely terrifying to wake up alone in your apartment frantic that if you open your bedroom door that someone unwelcome will be on the other side of it. I don't even get out of bed, I just lay there and talk myself off the ceiling until I finally fall asleep again...ugh.

After a couple nights of these odd dreams, I suddenly started to wonder, "why the heck does this person have a key to get in?" It really struck me as odd because I'm the only with my set of keys. So who would I have given my keys to? They say dreams are your subconscious pulling forward to mind the things we put to the back of thoughts throughout the day. what am I suppressing that's causing me to dream about mysterious intruders with keys to my house? I say it's the dang emotional disturbing plot lines on television shows today...then again I've been watching Gilmore Girls so that really doesn't add up.

The lack of undisrupted slumber is doing nothing for my psyche right now...before you know it I'll be having nightmares about swimsuits chasing me around...oh brother...

In any case, I did discover the intruder to by none other than my Pyro Man--I guess it wasn't late night TV after all. Huh. Guess I'll have to work out theories behind that one then now...groovy.

So, Pyro Man if you'd like to tell me just why you think it's acceptable to come waltzing into my dreams and scaring me half to death with your cryptic grandiose entrance, I'd be happy to know, sir! I lost ten years off my life and couple hours worth of beauty rest! Just kidding--but seriously, the next time you decide to pop into my dreams, do make it a little less of a "the call is coming from inside the house" scenario.

Much love,

Your Girlfriend

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Final's List To-Do

Ah, list making! Is there anything better than pulling out a pretty pad of paper, your favorite pen, and jotting down all the things that are floating around in your head!

I love list making--absolutely LOVE it. Putting pen to paper on all the thoughts that are running around in my head really does help me sort out the to-do's and whatnot. I blame Mom for this love of to-do lists. And kitchen gadgets. Boy, do I love kitchen doodads and whats-its. Even more so I love dish ware like my beautiful fiesta ware that I eat on every day--so colorful and cheery!

Wait, I was distracted by the thought of kitchen gadgets. Hamster-brained today I suppose. LISTS! That's what I was going on about which to my readers, is probably not that entertaining, but ah-ha!

I am making FUN lists today. Lists that involve nothing but happy reminders to get me through the next two weeks (which break down to a week of actual classes and a week of finals! Can we say HECK TO THE YEAH!....I'm not "gangsta" in the least bit, but I certainly do try to get down with my bad self....I'll stop now.)

ANYWAY, as I day dream of my future time off, I've penned a few ideas so far. Have I missed anything?

1) MASSAGE--the traditional semester ending massage always happens after my last final, ballet.

2) Hair-cut--just trying to keep my hair from looking too much like it's been an after-thought these last few weeks.

3) Trip to the Arboretum--Such a beautiful time of year to go and for my 21st birthday, just a mere two years ago this MAY, Esther came with me when she was in town. I should mention I'm thinking of the Dallas Arboretum. Oh, it's just gorgeous!

4) Chick-fil-a date with Mom--The Chick is our lunch place. Don't even begin to think it's not fancy dining--I mean, we know the workers at the one is Rowlett PERSONALLY, thank you VERY much. We get free re-fills and every thing when they roll out the red carpet for us. I kid, sorta. But it is a place where Mom and I have spent a good portion of our heart-to-hearts, good, happy or sad (yes, I've cried in Chik before). If I'm feeling really blue, I'll head over to one for a pick-me up. Nothing like a glass of tea to bring you home even just for a sip.

5) Lunch at SPOONS--Yet another restuarant I love to go to not only because of the food (which is delicious. Oh yum!) but also because of it's great decor. Gee whiz, it's just a cute little place that's perfect for a ladies lunch. Located in downtown McKinney conveniently close to my sister's house (Hint, hint, Sarah) and they have the BEST desserts! Good gravy, my mouth is watering!

**SHAMELESS PLUG--my birthday is in 25 days, the 17th so mark your calendars. I'm thinking a Spoon's cake is in order to make up for the fact that I will be starting school on the celebratory day of my birth. Just sayin'...**

6) Homemade Family Dinner--Last time I was home, I got to try my hand at cooking for the fam. So much fun, not to mention I had my own personal sous-chef with me (Thanks, Mom!). It's always nice when we all pitch in, makes for a crowded kitchen, but hey--its family time spent together.

**There's quite a bit of food reference in here...hmm...perhaps because it's lunch time. Nah--I'm usually always thinking about food.

7) Trip to Barnes & Noble/Half-Price Books--let the summer reading begin! I try to go for 10 books a summer which I usually surpass so we'll see if I can get that far with all the thesis stuff I'll be working on.

8) Reading in my Hammock--Time to make use of my 20th birthday gift (see there's that birthday reminder for ya'll again. Funny how that happened...). Yup, I asked for a hammock a couple, three, years ago and I love using it when I'm home!

9) Playing with Piper--do I need to expand upon that one? Really?

10) Day dreaming--oh I've got plenty of things to plan for and wonderful day dreams I want to continue falling into while sunbathing in my hammock or making napkin lists with Mom. Planning will more so includes my thesis and though I want to make sure my week off is spent relaxing, visiting with family, (MAYBE) seeing my Pyro Man, and of course the big trip to FL, I can't say I'll spend much time on it. Then again, this process is pretty well cut in half from what everyone else gets...

Yeah, I'm going to pull a Scarlet O'Hara and say "If I think about that now I'll just go crazy! I'll think about it tomorrow." Gotta love Gone With the Wind.

See, list making is fun--it automatically gets you super excited for the upcoming excitement and makes you forget all about that pesky research paper that needs editing...oh wait. Dang it. Back to work then I guess. Happy Thursday to you all!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weenie...

Weenie--you can certainly say that again. Right now I am being the biggest, yellow-bellied weenie you've ever seen. Why? Oh because it's that time of year, the one we woman sometimes don't always love...

Shopping for swimwear.

I'm so excited about my trip to Florida in May! Saturday I took some time to shop around a bit and as I waltzing through clothing racks, I ran into the swimsuit section. *Gulp*

Oh but the beach is calling me name! Warm sand, cool water, hot sun and getting a tan! Glorious tan! (Using sunscreen of course). Oh the wonders that color could do for my skin complexion! To be even a shade darker than porcelain would be divine...It's sad, my base is THE lightest shade Clinique has...any lighter and I'd disappear.

See, I'd kinda forgotten that I when I asked Karley if we could go to the beach that I'd have to wear a suit. Call me crazy, but I always forget about that part when it comes time to summer. That is until I end up in the dressing room with 80 suits hanging up and me sobbing in my stall--"WHY DON'T I HAVE THE BODY OF A 12 YEAR OLD ANY MORE?!?!" The girls cannot be just stuffed into a bando suit like some other folks, OK. It just ain't going to happen.

Eh, I like my curves--I've gotten used to them. And yes, I'm sure you're pointing out the fact that hey, I run around in spandex five or six days out of the week. That's days, not hours. But there is a huge difference in running around in a bikini and dancing in my tards and tights ("Tards"--abbreviated word for "leotards.").

When I'm dancing, my body is moving, working and I'm concentrating on an execution of a movement--not necessarily how my body is holding up (Although, yeah, I'm looking in the mirror every five minutes to make sure those Stretch & Hold tights are holding everything in...whew! Suck it in!).

It's a mental block, I know this to be true, but it doesn't stop me from hating the fact that I can never find that magic that transforms me into a Victoria's Secret model--curse you oddly shaped women who we've put on pedestals for your strangely skinny, long torso and limbs! I despise you for downplaying the natural curves of the female contour!

Well, now that I've had my hissy fit, guess I better get back to searchin'--either I find a suit or I go naked and I think I'd much prefer to find a suit instead!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

No-Woman's Land

I took a trip this afternoon to a place I don't think I'll be returning to any time soon. A place full of objects and doo-dads I have no use for in the near future: Lowes.

Yes, I'm working on a little "hardware" project for my choreography II piece and I HAD to go to Lowes today. First of all, I have never taken a solo trip to this store before. More often than not I've entered this hardware haven with my father to accompany him on some sort of mission and while he was picking out the perfect tool, I was making use of the GIGANTIC aisles to practice my dance, naturally.

I'm in need of small wheels with brakes for a garment rack that's doing a bit dancing on it's own and that is unacceptable according to my panel--I guess they're afraid it might smack into one of my dancers while they're twirling around. Go figure, I would consider than impromptu comedy. Anyway, when I realized that I was going to have to make a hardware trip, I couldn't help but cringe.

Ladies, I fear I am that girl. You know the one. She has all the tools but never has had to use them because someone else is usually there to "help" (i.e. take over). Let me explain, my sister bought me a tool kit for my high school graduation. Not just any kit, a pink tool kit. Does it get some use? Why of course, but never by me. Karley's father ended up using it every time he was in town and then the roomies would borrow it for some reason or another. Dad of course has used it foccassionally when Mom coerced him into fixing something within my apartment. If the pink tool kit was not enough, my dad also bought me a hot pink drill and another cordless one with bits.


And OK, yes, I was a management student so I had to pick up a tool now and again to help with stuff, but really, it was nothing that extensive. I have a very BASIC, and I stress BASIC, understanding of tools. In my wildest dreams it would be nice to know how to fix anything on my own, to be that woman instead of this girl, who was thinking all of this while standing in the pouring rain staring at the big blue Lowes sign, praying I don't have to go in.

I enter and it smells like metal, paint, woody stuff, not a hint of anything I would remotely shop for. Oh sweet jeebus, I'm going down. I feel like a fish out of water in this store big time and I ain't liking that one bit. Fortunately for me I have a great lost look. While I'm wandering around the front of store (because my chicken self wouldn't move further than the front door) a hardware hero comes rolling by with a dolly and says the sweetest thing,:

"Can I help you, ma'am?"

"OH GOD YES!" *chrip chirp*

"*AHEM*I mean, yes, please."

Nice Hardware Hero proceeds to listen to my crazy curious inquiry, then leads me down aisle after aisle all of home repair equipment, lumber boards and displays of every light fixture you can imagine. My mind is reeling with everything that's available including do-hickies and thinga-ma-bobs. "I'll take five of each!" Oh wait, scrach that, I have no idea what half these hinges are for anyhow.

Hardware hero finds a whole section devoted to wheels. Big black ones, short metal ones. Some with brakes, some without. Some that look a little complicated for me to put on all my lonesome. "Yeah, just drill a hole a bit smaller than the screw then thread it in and you should be good to go! Good luck on your show!" Holy Hannah...I have to do this myself, too. Reality hits.

Exit the Hardware Hero, enter the Freneticism. There I am, totally dwarfed by the huge shelving containing every wheel created including the original stone age variety. I have to drill another hole? Oh geez, I'm starting to sweat. Didn't he hear me when I said it was cheap Wal-Mart rack? Apparently not. *SIGH* There's got to be a simpler way of doing this.

Did you know wheels can cost $5 a pop? Adding up four comes to $20 making those wheels already two times the amount my garment rack is worth which only confirms my suspicions that this trip was a total and complete waste. And yet here I stand, petrified to move because well, I'm lost. Lost in Lowes and I can't even pull off a good exit here.

Good grief.

Well, I still have no solution for fixing my dancing garment rack but I will come up with one. One that's cheap and definitely not going to cause me absolute misery. I have this great ability to plan and brainstorm but when it comes to building said objects, aboslutely no clue--well, that's not true. I know who to go to so I can ask for "help" with the handiwork.

However, that might change--maybe this is a small blessing rather than yet another awkward challenge for myself. Perhaps I may learn that I'm quite a handy person and that there's hope for me yet...I just have to take that first step in order to learn how to build and create...all by lonesome.

One small brake wheel for my garment rack, one GIANT leap for my inner handy-woman!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Tigre and the Fish

There once was a cat named Tigre; a little orphaned kitty who roamed the parking lot of Cokesbury Apartments looking for a place to rest his paws. Tuckered out from his daily travels one day, he rested his fuzz butt on the roof a local's car to sunbathe.

What he did not know was that this car belonged to none other than, Karley, my roommate and lover of all cats. Clearly, he had found a new home in the loving household of the Beta Babes 521 apartment. Sweet Karley fell instantly for his furry face followed quickly by my two other precious roommates, Esther and Stacie. I, however, remained a bit skeptical of our new found feline friend.

See, Tigre was just a kitten who happened to wander onto our doorstep one day and Karley, being the cat person that she is, instantly took a shine to the creature. For me, I took some time to warm up to him. We had no idea where he spent his days and just what his kitty paws had been prancing on all the live long day. Perhaps it was because I've grown to be more of a dog person in my old age or perhaps because I was concerned about a flea infestation. Either way, I was weary of Tigre and just how house trained he was. So for a duration of time he would visit our balcony only, mewing and hoping for a bit of attention...

...of which the girls selflessly gave...

He stayed outside until the complex community rounded behind Karley to raise money for Tigre's shots. Apparently the little buddy had made the rounds to all sorts of people and everyone had a different name for him. My favorite was "What's Up."

Don't let the face fool you, he's loving every bit of this attention.

Turned out that Tigre was an exceptional cat, flea free, too, who we all loved and took care of for several months on end. He was practically perfect in every way...with the exception of one tiny unfortunate event.

April 1st, 2008, a most tragic day for our special Beta Babes apartment. It began with poor Esther, who fainted in class and broke off her front tooth. Again. Just the previous spring she'd fainted in a vet's office while visiting her childhood pet, Duke. Anyway, something went a miss and my dear sweet friend passed out in class that morning and tried to catch herself by the skin of her teeth. Literally.

After an unexpected trip the emergency room, Esther called me, told me she fainted and needed a ride. Well, Esther is known to be a bit of a jokster from time to time and I thought it was just another April Fools prank. It took a cell phone picture to set me straight (which I've been sworn to never show for fear of a brutal death at the hands of my friend.).

Oh my. She WASN'T kidding. Boy, did I feel like a rotten friend. I did find her a ride though and vowed to treat her to a whole pan of any cookie she wanted...after, you know, her tooth was reattached...

Esther returned sometime that afternoon, tooth Vaselined on, to our home in disarray. Stacie, our fourth roommate, had discovered she was being eaten by little bed bugs at night. I know, gag with me here. Poor thing had bites all over back. After complaining to our complex about the *ahem* little issue, they came "rushing" over to cart off our mattresses and reassign us to a temporary home. In other words, ordered us to pack up everything cloth in our apartment, wash it and then MOVE it all into another complex for an unspecified amount of time all before they bug bombed our home. Oh but at least they paid for the laundry.

Think about it folks. Four girls living in one apartment for a whole year and they're asking us to wash all of our clothes. Four girls. Living there for several months already...oh the massive amounts of laundry we did....Several hours worth and we ran out of the detergent they gave us...for crying out loud.

So Esther returns from the hospital with Stacie in the midst of our apartment being torn apart, just fit to be tied over the little bugs that have now thrown us out of our home. Karley and I gave in and started packing our things for our temporary stay, a process that took a lot longer than anticipated. Esther, completely out of sorts decided that the day has called for a little get away. Our old roommate, Marisa, called her up and offered to get her mind of things by taking her out, of which Esther happily accepted.

My Favorite left while the rest of the girls continued to load, wash and unload our lives over the course of the evening. Unfortunately, none of us bothered to really pay attention to Tigre, who had been rather confused with our incessant moving around. They say animals can tell when their people are leaving...I guess Tigre's senses were on high alert.

After a time I was the only one floating back and forth between the laundry room and the apartment. One particular trek up the stairs, I noticed something smelled rather off. I entered our apartment, sniffing to beat the band. Took a look around, saw nothing out of the ordinary but then again our whole apartment was in shambles. I called out, no one answered--I guess I was smelling something from outside since our door was open. But after a time my nostrils were really bothering me. I couldn't even pinpoint the smell, I'm not exactly a blood hound here, but golly moses, it was awful!

I gave in to my curiosity and followed the trail which curiously seemed to grow stronger as I got closer to Esther and Stacie's wing. Then I began to narrow down the stench to just Esther's room...I pushed open her door finding her room in just a disastrous state as the rest of the place. Clothes thrown everywhere, drapes pulled off, the bed unmade, the fish bowl tumped over...

Wait a second...

The fish bowl tumped over? Esther had this fish, Monsieur Bleu, that she got from her big in Gamma Phi Beta--and yes, it was none other than a beta fish. Get it? GPhiBeta....beta fish...ahahaha! OK Then. Moving along...

So I'm looking at this bowl and following the trail of water...followed by scattered pebbles...and trees...and bowl...but no fish. Then to my left, I see a flicker of a tail. Not just any tail...the tail of Tigre who, by the way, was perfectly posed with his paws crossed. And I swear to goodness that he looked right at me, flicked his tail once more and then licked his little kitty lips.

Holy No no no no. No way.

Slowly I began put two and two together: the missing fish and the fat, happy, lip-licking kitty next to fish's empty bowl. Someone had an unapproved midnight snack it seemed.

Well, I begin to giggle. The day has just been like this. Horrible. Awful for everyone in this house and now I have to call my best friend and tell her our other best friend's cat just ate her fish.

Must have cracked because I died laughing. Couldn't contain the hysteria any longer--I just rolled on the floor with the biggest guffaws you've ever heard. Have you ever?

Then, in between hiccups of laughter, I decided THAT would be an appropriate time to call Esther and tell her the splendid news. However, instead of telling her, I left a message. I left her a message with me giggling all the way through:

"Hhhiiii, Esther...*snicker snicker* I uh...hee hee hee...I have some...pbbbtt haha...AHEM..Excuse me. I have some! I'm sorry, it's not funny but it is. Anyway, um...Tigre...he uh...hahaha...he ate Monsieur Bleu...I'm so sorry. I love you."

Yup, I'm almost positive I ended it with an "I love you." After I mercilessly snickered and giggled while delivering her some of the sad news of her dead fish, I was sure to remind her heartless friend still indeed loved her. Good grief.

The thing is that this whole day was topped off with this priceless scene--I felt like my life had been placed in a sitcom for the day because honestly, how often do so many mishaps happen over the course of a day?

A few hours later, Esther returns and I've already broken the news to Stacie and Karley. Tried my best to clean up the mess in her room, it was the least I could do after leaving her such a crushing message. A couple of friends felt bad about our situation and came by with pizza and ice cream except they picked up a carton of Ben and Jerry's "Phish Food." I think that kinda twisted the knife a bit...

Esther was not amused when she walked in the door. Not to mention that Tigre hung around to admire his handiwork in her doorway. He's just such a doll though. How can you resist that cute kitty face?

I rest my case. Has Esther ever forgiven our sweet Tigre? The world may never know.

And Monsieur Bleu, we think of you often. You lived a good fishy life and from what I can tell you tasted pretty delicious so kudos to Esther for feeding you well. Overall though, we survived the day and with a bit of laughter have all gotten a kick out of it since--I'm telling you, you can't make that stuff up. As for Tigre, he spent his last few days with us and is now living on a farm somewhere in Kansas.

No really. Karley found him a home and he's roaming around happily in search of more beta fish. We miss you much!

And just to prove that a picture is worth a thousand words (and laughs), here ya go:

**Note the incognito kitty hidden amongst the laundry in the bottom left corner...oh how slick he was...and no, I did not pose him--he was WAITING for the camera...

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Little Memories

The end of the year is coming up--24 days until I'm home and off on another short lived adventure all before summer school begins. I'm really excited because I'm getting to visit one of my best buds at the happiest place on earth, Disney! Karley, whom I've written about before, is currently living and working for Disney World in Orlando.

Little back ground, Karley is my college roommate whom I shared living space with for four years. Funny story, we actually requested to be roommates before we'd even met. How did that happen? Well, I had an old dance friend who's sister lived in Florida and met Karley through a vacation bible school program at her church. The sisters found out that we were both going to OCU in the fall and thought we would make great roommates. So, we both signed up requesting one another before our first phone conversation. Turned out to be a match made in heaven really!

Can't even begin to explain my enthusiasm of getting to see Rooms! I haven't seen the girl in about a year and let me tell you, when you live with someone in close quarters for a lengthy amount of time, you begin to miss little things about them. But I do have certain reminders of my friend on a daily basis. For instance, I cannot throw away a single cardboard box without breaking it down. Karley used to do it and even taught me how to properly break down a box because, well, when a box is closed, it makes it so much easier to fit more trash in a trashcan without a bulky box in the way. I laughed, but dang it, Karley! I literally cannot bear to see a WHOLE box sticking out of the trash. And if you must know, I've passed the good habit on to my parents as well.

Karley has this love for cats unlike anyone I've ever seen. She even adopted a cat who lived in our apartment complex our junior year. He was known as the Cokesbury Kitty but Karley affectionately renamed him Tigre. Even though I was way unsure about how I felt with a stray cat running around, Karley collected funds from our entire complex to pay for shots the little guy needed to keep him healthy (and pest free) when he stayed in our place. I would have never admitted to liking that feline at the time although now I have to say I kinda miss seeing his fuzz but around the apartment. Tigre turned out to be a pretty dang good pet for our place. With the one exception when he ate Esther's fish...perhaps that'll be tomorrows story...

One of the things I miss without Rooms here, and I really think on a daily basis, is how she used to be just down the hall. I used to pop in Karley's room to ask her questions from time to time about who knows what, just about anything! Or I'd go stand in her doorway and ask for a hug if a day had been really crummy. It was just nice to get a "squishy" from her (SQUISHY: A type of hug, filled with love and affection to fill up you "love bucket." There's a whole Karley language I can't even speak with anyone else--dag-nab it! Karley, get your butt back here--people think I'm crazy!) Though I love my big girl apartment, I miss that terribly. Unfortunately, I didn't take advantage that she was a few feet away from me that whole last year she was here. BUT now, I have an opportunity to go and spend some time with her! I can't even wait!

Thinking about the upcoming trip reminded me of my friends that are no longer at OCU. They're enjoying the grown-up world of adulthood of which I'll be joining them in less than a year's time. Growing up puts a bit of distance between me and my close friends and that's a bit frustrating not getting to spend time with them like I used to. Even Esther, the other best buddy of mine, came through last Thursday for a quick sleep over. She's only a couple hours away but I still don't get to see her too much any more. No more coffee dates or Stir-fry Wednesdays in the caf. No more shopping cart rides to work where we would have our own "staff meetings" (i.e. gossip sessions). HOWEVER, she is going to be in Dallas all too soon and I'll get to be closer to my Favorite once again.

Still and all, it's amazing how close people get to one another in such a short few years. Then poof! They're gone on their own adventure, which you support whole-heartedly as a good friend should. Of course, there are always the good memories to look back on and hopefully you took enough pictures to document that leg wrestling contest you had or the Halloween costumes you wore that one year and who could forget the one time when we threw that birthday party with the plastic animals--see what I mean? Good memories of good times with some of the greatest friends I've ever had, some of which I haven't even gotten to mention in this post.

To sum it up, short and sweet, I'm excited to see Karley! I'm excited to see Disney for the FIRST TIME EVER! And I'm excited Esther's moving to Texas! Oh happy day!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Dare I say it?

Things are beginning to slow down a bit...

I mean, I have tons left to complete over the next few weeks, but I believe things are slowing to where I can accomplish more now. Crazy. And how did I come to that conclusion exactly?

Maybe it was the fact that I was able to sit for an hour at Lake Hefner Sunday afternoon and enjoy a good hamburger while watching people jog around me. I felt like such a cruel person. Here I am, savoring every bite of this hamburger I'd been dreaming about all morning, breaking off each tid-bit of deliciousness right in front of these poor exercising people. Don't even say they didn't notice because be darned if I didn't park my happy butt down on a park bench right in front of the trail.

It just happened that way--I wanted to sit right in front of the lake and that happened to be an open seat. So poor joggers, I'm sorry I tempted you so. Watching you tirelessly jog circles around the lake, sweating profusely and huffing to beat the band, well, I figured I would be kind enough to eat that burger you selflessly gave up in the name of exercise.


Anyway, while I was sitting, enjoying my quiet time out in the fresh air, away from all computer screens and library books, there was a cute couple who sat down and enjoyed a picnic together. I thought, "That is precious. To be able to pack a lunch and go have a nice afternoon with your honey on such a pretty day, that's just so sweet."

Let me preface that I enjoy doing many things by myself. Sometimes it’s nice to have that moment alone just to be. Of course having people to share in the joy of your activities is always nice, but there are moments where you just need a minute to yourself. I could have called a friend to join me in this impromptu lake trip. I could have, but I didn't. Why? Because I just wanted to eat outside, in peace, and make a to-do list.

As I sat there on my bench, I took a good look around. Everyone was in the same relaxed state I was--with the exception of some joggers. I really thought some of them were going to collapse at my feet and my CPR certificate is definitely expired. Keep running, sir! You go man....just don't keel over at my feet....thanks...

Sitting on a bench, you see quite a bit of things that normally I don't because I'm so focused on my work. Watching what everyone else did strangely enough, made me pretty happy, too. I got to see peole enjoy the weather with picnics, kite flying, couples strolling along hand and hand, families playing catch, walking their dogs, running their children--wait, I don't think that's an actual activity...or is it?

**Side note: I had someone call me yesterday because I was recommended as a good baby sitter. I don't baby sit. Period. I have NEVER given my name as someone to call for a baby-sitter. I dog sit. I house sit. I don't sit on children--that's a whole lotta responsibility I ain't ready for. Maybe when Sarah decides to have a kid--I mean, hey, if something happens, it's with my sister's kid and not a stranger's. Plus, I've been evilly plotting on hyping her youngster up on sugar then sending 'em right back to her! Muahahaha!

(Again, with the laugh--I'm feeling rather devious today.) See what I mean? I'm purposefully planning on sending a hyper child back to my loving older sister. CLEARLY I am not ready to take care of someone’s kid, even for a couple of hours.**

What was I talking about? Oh, yeah, pretty day, blah, blah, blah. The POINT being, I relished in the fact that I had time to just sit for an hour and take in the organic happiess. Keyword: SIT. Not stare a screen or listen to yet another lecture on music theater or strain to find one more set of eight counts worth of choreography. I sat. And I sun bathed (so to speak). And I got a natural happy feeling from just being around other happy people. And I felt like a whole new person. It's as if the stress melted away for those blissful 60 minutes and I could daydream about anything I wanted--which I did quite a bit of, all about happy things I'm looking forward to in the future. It was virtually impossible to think about work with some much sunshine goodness beaming down.

I wish I could do that every day. Well, there's a lot of things I wish, but for now I think that's the biggest one I have--a day to spend outside doing something purely enjoyable. Thankfully, I have only three more weeks of school to get through. I'll keep chugging along until I can have that one week off--ah, freedom, I await your presence so!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

And Counting...

Three more weeks for actual class.
- One more Dance History presentation
- One more timeline and music analysis for Dance History
- 1/2 a research paper for Dance History
- Three more projects (and a final compilation) for Research and Writing
- One more dance and two look-sees for Choreography II

One week of finals...

All before my one week of summer vacation including massage, seeing family, seeing Karley at Disney, and celebrating my birthday!!

But I'm not counting down or anything...

Yeah right...

Friday, April 9, 2010

Sing-Song Sing Alongs

So I have this fabulous family. I mean it. They are crazy fun and super creative and I enjoy our facebook interactions so dang much!

Facebook interactions?! Well, more like facebook sing alongs! Yup, don't think they really existed before we invented them, but they do in fact exist. On more than one occasion someone will post a song lyric on their status and inevitably one or all of us will answer back with the next line or two. It's fantastic!

And when I say "family interactions" that really only includes two of my aunts and my mom, occasionally my sister when she isn't swamped with work. I mean, I can't really see the men joining too often--that might compromise their manly nature, plus I'm not too sure if they have facebook...that poses a problem it would seem...Anywho!

We've gone through just about every morning song you can think of. "Good Morning!" from Singing In the Rain and "Oh What a Beautiful Morning" from Oklahoma!. Even "Good Morning Starshine" from Hair.--If it's not obvious now, I love me some musical theater. But my all time favorite, "Good Morning to You," comes from our leading family choir director, my grandmother.

Grandma is a hoot and half--I love her dearly and she is always singing a song. To me it's pretty entertaining when she gets one stuck in her head and if she forgets the words. Well, she just hums 'til she gets back to the chorus again. I can't count the number of times we've all sung songs with her including SEVERAL rounds of "Row, Row, Row Your Boat" outside on summer nights in Lubbock. I can remember being just a little girl running around her giant backyard, hopping on the swing set and having her sing me "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot" as she pushed me back in forth. Since she's learned how to text, we sometimes send songs back and forth to each other.

Mom used to sing to me, too--mostly folk songs by Joan Biaz or John Denver and Jim Croce. There was this one song I just adored called "Lily of the West" that was about this man who was in love with this woman who ended up cheating on him and oh! There's a fight and the man gets sent to prison for killing the woman's lover! It's so dramatic and such a good story! I know, what kind of five year old would ask her mom to sing her this stuff, but it had a story to it! Only me--and I had no clue what pop music was until I like 11...such a bizarre child.

Rainy days? I always think of Winnie the Pooh's song. You know, "I'm just a little black rain cloud hovering over the honey tree. Everyone knows that rain cloud doesn't eat honey! No, not a nip!" There's a song for almost any day you're having--any form of expression for a person's mood. Today is an "Orange Colored Sky" for me--yes, I know it's blue, but I'm in that kind of a happy mood.

Have you ever noticed there really is a song for everything? Honestly, while people are speaking, sometimes I think of some song that fits with either the situation or what they just said. Try playing that as a game sometime, you'll be singing all kinda of songs all day. And that's the thing, every day there's a different song I'm humming around and I love how I can still share in that with my sing-along family even when we're miles apart. How cool is that?

So as you go about your day today, why don't you share your song with someone else--might just make their day, too.

"I don't sing because I'm happy; I'm happy because I sing." -William James

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Hello Humidity

Ah, spring in Oklahoma! The weather is bright and beautiful, the trees are in full bloom, it's tornado season, we're getting spring rains and it's humid.

Oh wait, that last part, not my favorite part of spring. Why? Oh because I have blessed with the type of hair that tends to fuzz out at the slight chance of rain. Don't get me wrong, I have learned to love my hair, it's grown on me (ba-dum-ching!) and with some serious hair care help, I've learned to work with it pretty well.

If you've ever met my parents, you can see where it comes from. Dad used to have an afro (I love telling people that--it's true, too!) and Mom has a very wild mane of her own (curly, full, and thick red hair--Only the red gene skipped me, dang it. ). Put those two together and you get me, the human chia pet. Add water and watch it grow. Houston, Florida--we don't get along too well when it comes to hair care. WAY too much humidity in the hair, looks like I stuck my finger in a socket, yowzah!

These locks of mine have come in very handy for me though. For instance, I can predict the weather. Like today, I walk outside and wham! My hair starts fuzzing like you wouldn't believe. I can then conclude it's going to be cloudy with a chance of Big Texas Hair (i.e. rain). Oh and Big Texas Hair, it was key in a good majority of my dance performances as a child. Though I may have been born in the wrong era (always wanted to be Ginger Rogers), my hair certainly wasn't. It was MADE for Big Texas Hair. You know what I'm talking about?

The 90's hair where everyone used eight cans of hair spray on your hair to solidify the cascade of teased curls you fried your hair for. See, look at our homegirl, Reba, my hero at age six.

See what I mean? The girl had some volume. And yes, I wanted to be Reba. And Dolly Parton. "Jolene" was my favorite song ever. Continue snickering if you must--Focus on the hair. It was HUGE! And baby, did i know how to do Texas Hair.

Don't believe me about the big hair? Fine, some blackmail proof for your enjoyment:

Yup--that little bit, shaking her groove thing on the floor is me, age seven. Here's another from the good ol' days of dance:

Yeah, you can even tell I'm not too sure about this costume. Still not good enough for you? OK then. Pulling out the big guns. Please try not to fall out of your seat laughing:

The ultimate Big Texas Hair shot. I know, its outrageous how much it sticks out from under that hat--just to answer your question before you EVEN ask, the hair, the duds were all for a dance performance.

No, I don't wear my hair like this any more although I have been lucky enough to do so for friends--watch out ladies, you ask for big hair and I will not back down. I love helping people out with that because 1) it's so much fun to tease and hair spray 2) it's simply oh so tacky, but great from an audience perspective and 3) I have seriously mastered the art. Oh, there's an art to it, my friend.

Just watching my hair fuzz out today into its natural state does not bother as much as it used to. It is what it is and I kinda enjoy looking like Mufasa in the morning--I get an absolute kick out of my lion's mane, and I know the roomies did, too, when were living together. Letting my hair "do it's thang" feels almost freeing because it's so me. I joke that my hair usually emulates how my life is going. Pretty right on today since it looks like a rat's nest, just crazy.

I've wondered sometimes what if I have a little girl someday way, WAY into the future and she's blessed (or cursed) to have my same hair, what would I say to her?

To you, future little one, you'll look like a wild child ragamuffin for a time and absolutely hate when I take a brush to those tangles--that's why we'll own stock in Johnson and Johnson no-tangle spray. There will be tears on middle school mornings when your locks will rebel, refusing to stay straight like the other girls' hair. By high school you'll have mastered the unruly nature of your hair with a good straighter and products, but as time goes along, as you learn to love every bit of yourself, you'll find that your crazy curls are what you love the best, what makes you, you.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Judging a Person By Their Cart

You've heard the expression, "Don't judge a book by its cover." Well, I've come up with a new one:

"Don't judge a person by their shopping basket!"

There I am, standing in the gross Wal-Mart on Belle Isle, waiting patiently in line (Seriously, I cringe when I go in there, it's just...ick. Which is why I drive an extra 15 min down the road to go the nice one with nice people in the clean store. New paint and remodeling cannot hide the icky nature of this particular Wally World.). After hopping off the plane last night, I was in desperate need of a quick grocery run--all I needed was essentials so I caved and entered the shady store.

I've got my basket full of my $26 purchases to get me through the week. There's nothing interesting there. Really. Meat, soy milk, yogurt, cheerios, various berries, bananas, spaghetti sauce, bread. That's about it. Nothing crazy or would strike interest in anyone to take note. And for the first time I didn't have any treats in there for myself that I would think anyone would judge.

And by that, I mean, I feel a little guilty when I my basket has all sorts of fresh fruits and veggies and then something like, I don't know. Six bags of hershey kisses in there. OK, maybe not six, but it seems funny to me to have such a healthy looking batch of groceries and then something totally indulgent in there. Who really cares what's in your basket, honestly.

And forgive me for being that person, but I do scan other people's baskets and wonder what they're fixing for dinner, why do they need eight bottles of dish washing soap and where the heck did they get those cookies--they look great!

So I'm a basket snoop. Everyone does it mostly discretely. Mostly everyone except for this one man. Tall, basket snooper man was getting on my last nerve. Yesterday I had a very nosey person IN FRONT of me--not behind, that's a little easier for people to not notice. But oh-ho no, Mr. Man kept turning around looking in my basket and frowning. Then he'd look at me, I'd smile, he'd smirk, and then face front. After a few minutes, he'd turn around again, gaze into my non-thrilling basket, frown, look me in the eye to smirk as I once again, politely smiled and then turn around.

This happened about four times. I really wanted to interrupt his judgemental stares with a "Can I help you?" He left before I could harass him about it. Really,there is a point when it becomes rude, sir. I thought I had something on my face. I kept double checking my basket to see if something weird was hanging on to it or something.

Was he confused by the fact that I drink soy milk and yet buy yogurt? Was he surprised I didn't have pasta for my spaghetti sauce and meat? Did he want my strawberries to go with his blackberries--I mean, I'd paired mine with strawberries and even had blueberries, too. WHO KNOWS? Perhaps he was just content to scan over my groceries over and over again.

Well, sir--if I ever see you again, I'm going to stare your basket down, judge your normal food items and then smirk your way, too. Bizarre store. Bizarre people. Bizarre state. Lord, get me out of here.
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