Archive | April, 2010
27 Apr

When I think, my mind words in one-liners. Or sometimes three-liners. Here are some of the errant thoughts that I had today.  This is almost too embarrassing to post. Almost.

  1. Sleeprunning has worse implications than sleepwalking.
  2. Banana peels left on the ground exist just so people will step on them and slip on them. What other function could they possibly have?
  3. If I could breathe underwater, I would look for Nessie. That way, if a weathered seaman was telling stories about her, I would be able to say I saw her with my own two eyes.
  4. Who invented the phrase “Off the chain”?
  5. Would we still eat walking tacos if they had little walking legs? I don’t think we would.
  6. My political ideology professor says ‘neither’ just like I do!
  7. I’m so tired. I don’t even feel like being environmentally conscious today. I am going to drink this bottle of water and enjoy it.
  8. Piggly Wiggly makes me want to not buy groceries ever. Wiggling swine does not make me want to consume anything. Except maybe environmentally irresponsible water.
  9. When was the last time you saw a legitimately gold fish? Like made out of Au, and not carbon and organic materials?
  10. When I was 5, my parents took me to the Olympic track and field pre-lims in Atlanta. I thought we were going to the tractor field! I’m glad I got older and ran track, and did not participate in tractor pulls. Though, tractor pulling does sound like it could be fun.

Today’s letter is…

27 Apr

If grammar was a page on Facebook, I would definitely list myself as a fan.

Most people hold mathematics and science as paramount forces in the workings of the universe, and I definitely agree! But I like to think of grammar as society’s way of keeping people in working order. It exists as communication’s basic structure. Grammar is what we use to figure out how to structure spoken and written word, and if we didn’t have this baseline, nobody would really know how to communicate. And probably the best part is that the rules of grammar are malleable. They change based on location, occasion, the person you are addressing, dialect, language, and just about any variable. It is a fun law of the universe! It keeps us guessing based on what it feels like doing from day-to-day. You don’t see gravity doing that! You don’t see quantum atom molecule inertia osmotic pressure gradient cell lipid bi-layer devices doing that jazz!

I am also a fan of Sesame Street! I remember watching REM sing “Shiny Happy Monsters” when I was a way little girl and it just about made my life. My English-teacher mommy deemed it an acceptable way to teach 5-year-old Elisabeth about numbers and letters and  about counting and reading and rhyming and a whole slew of awesome things – like grammar!

Today I saw this video. And my glorified perception of Sesame Street came crashing down.

This is a song, with cameo appearance by Sheryl Crow (awesome!), to teach children all about the letter i. The letter is flippin awesome. Not only does i indicate the first person, but it is also the square root of -1, making impossible math totally legit. Kind of. I think impossible math should just hang out with all of the other mythical beasts, like unicorns and Skyhawks – which are also totally legit, but in a non-menacing kind of way. Impossible math should just keep living in a dark cave with yetis and El Chupacabra. But I regress…

All was well and good until this song starting saying things like:

“I starts words like iguana!”

“I is gonna soak up the sun!”

“I teach you words like ice cream, so keep it cool as a dream come true for you!”

AH! What! What is this teaching the youth of society?! I is not to be referred to in the third person….even though I just did! This is out of control! Sesame Street, what have you done?!

Cruel Joke

19 Apr

It is a cruel cruel thing the BYU creamery did to me.

First, I discovered the miracle of coconut joy ice cream. I LOVE coconut anything.  I didn’t know the creamery HAD coconut ice cream. It does. I bought some.

I ate some.  It was delicious. I would say almost as good as Graham Canyon.

Then…my tongue started swelling. My throat started itching. My lips began to look like Angelina Jolie’s.

Of course I would be allergic to the most delicious food I have ever had. Of course.

Abe Lincoln awesome

18 Apr

I like the idea of Spring Resolutions over New Year’s Resolutions, and here is why. Every year, I get really ambitious and create an awesome list of New Year’s Resolutions. The list is pretty extensive – its like a manual for a Complete Self Overhaul. Anything from I’ll run 30 miles a week! to I’ll be less judgemental of people! to I’ll eat more carrots! Usually, I stick to the plan for about a month. I’ll run 35 miles a week and think the absolute best of everyone I meet and eat so many carrots that I swear my fingernails are a little more orange. And then, February rolls around, and I make a mistake. I only hit 15 miles. I look at the shoes somebody is wearing and profile them (Asics Gel-Evolutions?! They must overpronate…). I say forget good vision and dump the carrots; Let me eat potatoes or something!

So, under the depressive blanket of winter, my motivation plummets. The sky is always gray, there is ALWAYS residual snow on the ground, there are icicles, I can see my breath at all points during the day – nothing about winter feels like turning over a new leaf, or optimism, or general good feelings about anything, at least to me. The novelty of a New Year’s Resolution is probably the only part that inspires me to pursue anything, and after that wears off, I just kind of give up. Reflecting on this, I think it might be the stupidest excuse ever for failing to self-improve…

But this spring was pretty awesome for me. I think because this winter I walked EVERYWHERE, outside, and had gross, sweaty indoor rowing to contend with, it just seemed more intense than usual. And UC closed twice this winter – I guess that is the first time that has happened since the GREAT BLIZZARD of ’78 (my parents assure me this must be in all capitals). So I feel a little more justified in saying that this winter was exceptionally unenjoyable.

So spring this year, when it rolled around….was, I suppose, this awesome:

That’s right. Abraham Lincoln with Captain America and Spiderman. It looks like he’s about to go beat up everything that is unjust in American society. Go Abe. Go Marvel characters that pretty much only interact with each other once or twice.

Anyways, the extreme greenery and sunshine and warmth was such a dramatic change from the winter that I was filled with this awesome empowerment. Maybe I can change just as dramatically for the better as winter did into spring! Hence, this is why I love Spring Resolutions so much more. Everything around me is pretty and nice and just so darn happy! Why can’t I do that? There is nothing stopping me!

Today, I made a list of some of my resolutions. Some are awesome (not quite as awesome as that comic up there, but pretty darn close!). Some are just pitiful.

  1. I will shower before class at least 4 times a week. Everyday is just too optimistic at this point. This is really pitiful, but you just don’t realize how hard it is to go to class squeaky clean when you are afflicted with a kind of rowing-exhausted-sleepy narcolepsy. Seriously. Sufferers of this disease fall asleep in a variety of unusual locations, almost always wearing muddy spandex – arm chairs in the middle of the student union, patches of surprisingly comfortable grass, park benches, surprisingly comfortable stone steps, upright at desks….
  2. I will post more posts! Finishing this one took approximately 8 days.
  3. I will do laundry more frequently. My t-shirts still smell like river after I wash them. Sometimes I think I imagine it, but sometimes I think it is because I let them sit still damp for too long. Which is 100% gross. See #1 for excuse.
  4. I will voice my opinion in class more frequently. I have intelligent things to say about the state of affairs, I really do! But at the last second, I always clam up and someone provides a point of information that is either irrelevant, faulty, or just frustrating instead.
  5. I will have more patience with the boys that play frisbee in the hallway, and with the fellow that whistles in the same hallway for hours (the ones that are usually after midnight).
  6. When I hear something I think is unjust, I will do my best to say something or do something to correct the injustice. Take racist jokes for example. A new theme in my peer group is to tell exceptionally racist jokes. Here is my opinion on that. When considering socialization and internalization of concepts and ideas, there are definitely different degrees and levels that occur over time. I mean, you didn’t learn to multiply in your head instantaneously, did you? You learned it, by degrees, until you learned to do it automatically. The same concept of learning over time applies to internalizes different concepts and perceptions about the world around you. I think that there are different degrees to which hate and prejudice are internalized into a population. I think that one of the first levels comes with telling tasteless jokes. They make light of the situation; making fun of someone just because they are different becomes not that big a deal if you can laugh at it. It’s just a joke, I don’t really mean that. But if enough people think like that, it becomes a serious problem. This is where stereotypes come from. Eventually, this is where prejudices come from. And prejudices can lead to all sorts of horrible things. Look at history! I don’t understand why I haven’t been able to say anything – maybe I’m afraid of what my friends will think of me. Bu, considering the stakes, that isn’t an excuse at all! I feel like this should be near the top of my resolutions.
  7. I will go to class 90% of the time every week. That is such an embarrassing goal.
  8. I will run every other day, no matter what! No excuses!
  9. I will eat more carrots.
  10. I will listen to myself. I will do what I want to do.

I decided to end at 10, otherwise this post will seem like a novella or something (I only used novella in that sentence because you just don’t encounter that word enough! The last time I read the word novella was when I was Sparknotes-ing [if google can be a verb, so can this] Billy Bud.) But I want to point out the importance of #10.

I recognize the number of mistakes I make on a daily basis. Trust me, it’s more than the average person. Everything from an intense carrot deficiency in my diet, to more serious things that I am not very proud in mentioning. But I also recognize this. The brunt of these mistakes comes from failing to remain true to what I want to do. I listen to all of these people in my life that I am certain I am endangering that life integrity I used to be so proud of. Sometimes, I do find good advice! Annette is super awesome (Abe Lincoln awesome) at giving advice and guidance. But most of the time, the advice I am listening to is just really bad peer pressure. Drink this. Eat this. Sleep less. Shut down mode – activate.

When it all boils down, I’m to blame for all of this crazy stuff. It’s why, when spring rolled around, I wanted to (literally) turn a new leaf (if you think I didn’t go up to a newly leafed tree, pulled off a leaf, and flipped it over, then you are wrong). But the cause of it stems from me failing to stay true to myself. So, in summation, consider that behavior borderline eradicated! I guess I will add Resolution #11.

11. Relocate personal integrity

Communication

10 Apr

I have had an adventurous day.

During my adventures, I have gained a new appreciation for communication, as well as come to the realization that I need to improve my communication skills.

I woke up early to make breakfast for my roommates and Kody…who basically counts as a roommate.  It was delicious I must say. After we were filled, Kody was nice enough to take our trash, and asked if I would let him back in.  Unfortunately, I waited by the wrong door, and Kody said something like “We probably should have communicated a little better”.  Yeah.  That got me thinking about it.

Then I set off on a mighty adventure to find an Urgent Care center because I needed to get some prescription medicine.  I called my mom A LOT with questions. “What do I do?” “Where do I go?” “Whine whine whine”  “What are you talking about!” “I have no idea what pre-authorization is!”  That is just a few. It was about this time I started wishing I could understand exactly what I was supposed to say.  For my mother is fluent in insurance plan talk, and I can hardly count to three in that language.  There were communication issues.  But, happy news: I got my prescription.

So, then I went to the Smith’s pharmacy to get the goods.  There, while waiting for my prescription to be filled, I was sitting by a little family with the cutest little girl I have ever seen talking her mother’s ear off in spanish about something…I could only pick a few words out of the endless flow and those words were-princess, prince, love, dress and…camel? (that last one may have been mistranslated but I thought I remembered the word from when we watched aladin in Spanish in the 10th grade).  Anyways, I really wanted to tell this little girl that I had a princess shirt just like hers when I was her age, that I loved it and thought she looked really cute.  But I couldn’t, and that made me kind of depressed.

Then a mother and her preteen age daughter sat by us.  I liked these two at once.  The daughter had a mental handicap and the mother would answer her slew of questions with the most incredible patience.  The communication these two had was splendid.  The young daughter sat back quietly for about 5 minutes, and then something began to REALLY bother her, and she was screaming and crying in frustration since she was unable to make her mother understand.  It was then I wished more than anything I could find out what was bothering this poor little girl.  I wanted to tell her it was ok.  But I didn’t know how to communicate with her! My desperation to be able to relate to everyone was augmented as her mother, embarrassed by the sudden outbreak, apologized saying “I am so sorry. This happens all the time. I am so sorry.”  It was then I wanted nothing more than to tell this woman that she should not be apologizing! I wasn’t bothered by anything except my inability to help.  But I didn’t know how to say that, so I just resorted to the answer that DESPISE because I couldn’t think of anything else to say…”You’re fine”  Oh man. I really hate it when people say that, and I still find myself saying it all the time!

I got home, only to find my roommate Malorie’s best friend outside, and very worried about Mal.  Apparently no one had heard from her all day, and were worried that she hadn’t made it home after a party she was at last night.  I assured the worried friend that I had seen Malorie asleep this morning, and she .  But there you go…yet another example of failed communication.  Another reason I like this little anecdote…it made me think of the worried texts Elisabeth and I send all the time that go something like this. “So, you went out last night, and then didn’t text me and I THOUGHT YOU WERE DEAD! Don’t ever do that again.”  I think that if Elisabeth and I didn’t live thousands of miles away from each other, we would be just like Malorie and her friend Melissa, and go check up in person.

So anyway. That is what I learned today.  I wish I was better at communicating with everyone, because communication is important.  Very important.  It is the reason everyone likes getting mail.  The reason skype is so cool, and the reason people (especially me) FREAK OUT when something happens to their cell phones.  I am adding communication to my list of things to be thankful for.

And, for your enjoyment, one of my favorite illustrations of one person not having any idea what someone else (Willis in this case) is trying to say.

No one tell Mrs. Rhodes

9 Apr

Twas many many moons ago, in the rather dreary girls locker room of Alamogordo High School, I was crying to my role model, idol, and aerobics teacher Mrs. Rhodes about how I didn’t want to move, how I could still learn so much from her, how life wasn’t fair, yadda yadda yadda. I remember she gave me a hug, told me I was going to do great things, gave me her e-mail for letter of recommendation purposes, and led me to the door.  Right before I left though, she told me to remember three things that would bring me happiness and joy throughout life. 

  1. Never do drugs
  2. Marry the best man I can find…and send her an invitation. 
  3. never take the elevator when stairs are an option. Ever. 

 

My friends. Today, after all these years, I caved and I took the elevator from the third floor to the fifth floor of the library. I am sick you see. So very very sick. I couldn’t breathe, just standing up made me dizzy, and I was going to topple over at any second.  I stood at the base of the big stairs for a while, willing myself to start going up them, but I just turned and took the elevator.  I just couldn’t do it. Sigh. 

Nobody tell Mrs. Rhodes.