Thursday, August 30, 2012

Things to Know V: The First Week Back Edition

As we near the end of the first week back to class, I thought it appropriate to do a Things to Know. Because this week has been chock full of them. Some of them are funny and some are...they just are.

- From the outside of my apartment, the windows are street level. From the inside, they start six feet off the ground and require a chair for Louise to even reach the sill.

- The bedroom window doesn't open fully.

- That might be a good thing, in the long run.

- My kitchen table is dominated by a puzzle.

- The puzzle is not complete yet.

- I get roughly five to ten minutes of pretty church bell songs every three hours.

- Mostly because the Methodist church is right across the street.

- I required a slight tutorial on how to use my shower.

- It was frighteningly simple once I was shown how.

- Some things are easier the second time around.

- Always look before you put something in the toaster and push it down.

- Case and point: Having a new toaster. Cardboard left in it. Flaming cardboard and a screeching fire alarm at 8:15 in the morning on a Thursday.

- The apartment still kind of smells like smoke.

- Be wary of standing in chairs to flip the fan from intake to exhaust.

- Fall off the chair and nearly gouging your chest on the screws sticking out of the awful paneling in the living room is a great way to start the morning.

- While the fire alarm continues to blare and there are smoking cardboard remains in the kitchen sink.

- I met the Boy Next Door because I stress baked my little heart out on Tuesday and produced cupcakes.

- BND is rather attractive.

- Have I mentioned the apartment still kind of smells like smoke?

- Tonight feels like a macaroni and cheese and chicken nugget kind of night, but I really don't want to cook after the whole Flaming Toaster Incident.

- Capital letters are totally appropriate.

- I got all my work done for this week done by this afternoon. I feel rather accomplished.

- My writing workshop was not what I thought it would be. Rather than drive myself nutzo for the next however many months, I've dropped it.

- I do feel very, very relieved.

- NYS local Riesling is quite tasty.

- I kind of don't want to work tomorrow night.

- Mostly because I'd rather try and hope for dinner with the BND.

- I think the previous is and probably always will be just a pipe dream.

- Hope your week was as exciting as mine (but with no Flaming Toaster Incident).

Friday, August 24, 2012

Summer Jam

The phrase Summer Jam has a few different meanings for me - one more rooted in heresay and secondhand stories than anything else, and the other as the core of this post. At one point, Summer Jam meant a huge concert series about two miles up the road from my house that brought tens of thousands of people to the area and basically shut down the county.

In this case, it means I heard some interesting music this summer, and want to review my favorites and the moments that will always be linked to them. Much like that line in Eric Church's Springsteen where he says, "Funny how a melody sounds like a memory/Like a soundtrack to a July Saturday night."

So, yeah. Here we go.

Call Me Maybe: This was my manager's ringtone at work, so whenever the gift shop called to let us know we had a new reservation, this would blare from her phone. There were also moments when we would randomly dance in the kitchen, singing this at the top of our lungs. This was also the pick-up line for many a night when there were attractive, single men. (Not for this chick, though, I had to worry about not dropping cheesecake trays and whatnot.) Sadly, we did not make a boat version of this video. We should have.

Brokenhearted: When you work enough Teen Cruises, and have a best friend who is more than willing to indulge in the idea of mix CD's with you, this is what happens. This kind of became our Monday night anthem. Along with the next video.

Whistle: When Em and I first heard this song, it more or less....I dunno. We became attached to it. It's catchy. It went on our next mix CD. 

Pontoon: This is a Legacy song. As in, I will always be reminded of breakin' it down in the kitchen, belting the lyrics we knew, and just...this will remind me of two of the people I've worked with the longest at my job, and make me smile throughout the rest of the year. 

We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together: This is just catchy as hell. 

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is my Summer Jam. There are definitely others that will always bring up a memory or two, but they also contain enough F-bombs to blow my PG-13 rating like a popsicle stand. Have a good weekend, and most likely the next post will be from my new apartment in Geneva on Sunday.     

Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Sleepless Writers

Many of you know I write. Many of you also know I know quite a few people who share the same passion for writing and hopefully one day being published. We talk on a regular basis, and then, one day, somebody had this idea that we should start doing vlogs about writing stuff.

With the power of the internet at our disposal, we became The Sleepless Writers, made our own YouTube channel, and got busy making vlogs every day about a variety of different topics. After some feedback from our viewers, who thought our videos every day were a little heavy-handed and kind of spam-like in their feeds, we decided that we would take some time, have some interesting Skype discussions, and figure out a new way to do what it is that we love to do and what we offer to the wider audience.

Re-vamped, with newer purpose, and with our relaunch approaching on August 20, we are The Sleepless Writers, a collection of bloggers and vloggers. We'll talk about writing, book reviews, the life of a writer, and general randomosity, and we'll give stuff away, too.

You can follow us on Twitter, Tumblr, YouTube, Facebook...we're pretty much everywhere.

We also blog.

This could quite possibly be the start of something really, truly fabulous.

The Sleepless Writers

Monday, August 13, 2012

Moving Up and On

Sometimes it's the unexpected that does the most good. I was not prepared, Friday mid-morning, to be leaning against the counter of a souvenir kiosk and have my ex-boyfriend's wife go walking by with other members of her fire company. Really, the first thought upon seeing her was, to be honestly, incredibly shallow on my part in I was wondering how exactly she had passed the physical training aspect of it. Then I realized that really wasn't any of my business.

Even more surprising was the utter lack of emotional response the mere sight of her drew up. I wasn't angry. I wasn't sad. I simply...was. He'd moved on in a direction I had no intentions of going any time soon, and I think I finally realized in that moment I was good with who I was, and what I'd done so far in my twenty-two years on this planet.

Kind of also didn't surprise me to see said ex-boyfriend's sister on my walk back from getting coffee. She gave me a hug, there wasn't too much chitchat, and then it was back to hawking souvenirs and ringing up credit card purchases.

The ending gambit to all of this was, roughly in the same position as when I first saw his wife that morning, I saw the pair of them walking by. He looked much the same as the last time I'd seen him - only a little plumper, as not doing three sports a year like high school will do that to most of us - and, again, there really wasn't a whole lot of emotional reaction. It was like he was just another person passing by, though at one point he'd been much, much more than that.

I'm good. I'm good with who I am and what I've done so far with my life. This little series of events over the course of one day, almost totally randomly in a place where it definitely wasn't expected, proves it to me. And when I came to the conclusion that I was, indeed, not a complete wreck at the mere sight of them - together - well, I'm incredibly happy that I'm in a place where, I might not have expected a few years ago, but I'm more than okay with.

I'm more than okay with me in this moment.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


There are these certain moments of clarity in your life when, if the time is right, and the situation presents itself, you more or less find a direction in an otherwise dark, unknown place and pull yourself forward. And sometimes that direction matches up to the one you've had for a while, that dream you've been chasing. Other times, it takes you a little sideways.

But sideways can be good.

Recently, I've more or less figured out what I want to do post college graduation. It involves going back to school, and for someone who doesn't plan very well, I'm startling content with the path I'm aiming for.

Which happens to be a patisserie diploma from a culinary school with campuses all around the world. The one I'm aiming for happens to be in London, England.

Well, what about forensics?

The idea of being in a lab day after day - because with this kind of work and the degree I'll have, being a technician is probably what I'd be heading for - doesn' doesn't appeal to me. I know plenty of people who work in a cubicle all day, and that's not what I want for me. I want the chance to travel, to try new things, and make people happy. Generally, when people eat good food, they're relatively happy.

I love to bake. I'm good at it. And having taken food chemistry this past semester, I think that really cemented the sort of track I want to follow. Of course there will always be writing, as I'm looking at starting my third draft of Sage either today or tomorrow. My query letter needs to undergo some overhauling, and then I'll start sending out little packets of hope disguised as Publish me, please letters.

And in a few weeks, I'll be returning to college for my final semester. It's not going to be easy, I know this, but having crawled out of the academic basement between fall and spring of last year, I know I can do it. And that, sometimes, is more than half the battle.

So, this is where I'm at. It's been a fairly light summer for me - mostly working - and not a whole lot of blogging, and for that, I apologize. I'm still here, though. And that has to count for something.
"The difference between life and the movies is that a script has to make sense, and life doesn't."

-Joseph L. Mankiewicz