Archive | November, 2011

They can’t ALL be funny!

23 Nov

Light. That’s how I felt when I first met him. I was nineteen and I had just exhaled the last fragment of my cigarette, watching the ashes drop from outside of my car window and onto the school parking lot. The sparks, similar to the butterflies in my stomach, danced against the breeze of the warm spring night. I saw him in the distance, smiling and motioning over to his car: time to go.

When I was little, I came to the shocking realization that nothing was permanent. Every time I experienced something amazing or beautiful, I would feel a pang in my heart akin to the ache you feel when you have your first real, sincere cry as a child. I will never experience this moment again, I would think, and one day I may not even remember this moment anymore. The realization plagued me so deeply that I decided the best solution would be to go over a beautiful event in my mind as many times as possible—the sights, smells, noises—so that I would etch it into my brain. A memory tattoo. I felt comfort in the knowledge that, if I could remember the happy times in my life to the fullest extent, I could relive them and hopefully experience the same joy later on. I remember that I tried explaining this concern, and the solution, to my sister only to be met with confusion and disinterest. The way I looked at the world, I realized, was not something that every other six year old experienced.

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As we walked into the first bar that I had ever been in, I looked down at the hand intertwined with mine. I had never held a man’s hand in this way before, and I felt a sense of electricity run up and down my arm as I experienced the warmth of another person’s body  linked with mine. It felt so foreign and, yet, so intimate and important. The hand squeezed reassuringly. Back in the car, he had passed around a water bottle filled with cider ale, and I walked around the bar with a relaxed, happy demeanor that was foreign to my usual stern self. I remember that the bar was filled with noises but all I could really hear was the sound of his voice. The only two sensations I felt were the chill of the beer bottle in one hand and the comforting heat of his hand locked with mine in the other. Later on, he would take me outside and we would spend an hour, away from his friends, just holding hands and talking. Everything about that night, from the smell of his cologne to the feeling of excitement and nervousness as I looked at him, was so new and beautiful that I thought my heart and mind would explode.

Two years went by and the memory, once a symbol of the innocence of our first love, became a painful reminder of the feeling that I had lost long ago. When I decided that it was time to move on, I cried not for what I was walking away from then, but from the pain of the memories of nights like those when everything was exciting, vibrant and perfect.

Looking back, I couldn’t be happier that I have become such a meticulous tattoo artist of my memories. The surge of emotions from days past keep me from becoming bitter, and the ink has bled onto new memories that I have created now, reminding me that even the most faded colors can be retouched and made new again.

Leggo…At Least I’m Not Preggo.

14 Nov

Yesterday I spent a nightmare of an hour shopping for baby stuff in Walmart. I walked into the store, which always seems to have people identical from the zombie extras in Shaun of the Dead shuffling about, with my friend’s baby gift registry printed out and the items already highlighted and color coded based on cuteness and my current level of generosity. There was no way, I thought, that this could go wrong: I had a list with pictures, UPC numbers, brand names, and I was full from dinner and wouldn’t be distracted by food. Then, after taking five steps inside, I stopped dead in my tracks, my heart started palpitating and the fluorescent lights suddenly became blinding as I realized that I had no idea where the baby section was in Walmart. I couldn’t even begin to think of where I needed to go.

Maybe it’s near the dog food, I thought. Dogs, babies, smelly overpriced food…same thing, right? Wrong. It turns out that baby section is, like everything else in Walmart, completely hidden and has absolutely nothing to do with what the signs or even the employees say. You know how the stairwells in Hogwarts liked to randomly change and the students had to hope that they ended up in the right place? Walmart’s kind of like that. I’m pretty sure the aisles change at random and you just have to walk around aimlessly until you find what you need.

After twenty minutes of walking around, I finally found the baby section nestled in the middle of the clothing section. After pushing past tons of clothing racks with the scent of cheap dyes of third world countries wafting in the air, I stepped through the fabric and, like Lucy walking through the wardrobe into Narnia, arrived in the land of baby things.

scared baby

The same expression I had when I saw the baby section

It was godawful. I began grabbing articles of clothing at random only to realize that everything was labeled by months, and I had managed to pick out all 3-6 month items. Feeling defeated, I pulled out the list and began reading through it again:

Dino pajamas Guess how many articles of baby clothes had dinosaurs on them? Everything.

12 pack assorted heirloom socks Seriously, what kind of Walmart did she shop at? There were barely three packs of socks here.

12 pack Gerber newborn bibs Only found online. Figures. Seriously, why 12 of everything? How many babies is she really having?

Long sleeved newborn mittens Obviously she was joking with this one. What kind of baby wears mittens?

In the midst of shopping for items that I never even knew existed (for example, what is a “gown” for babies, and why couldn’t I find one? What kind of baby wears a gown/robe? Hugh Hefner’s?), the store was full of screaming kids. My chest started hurting a bit, and my breathing quickened as I realized that I needed to temporarily escape, and fast, if I was going to ever finish shopping for this girl’s baby, so I went to the safest place I could think of in Walmart: the wine aisle.

If I can't find baby things, how is Jessica going to do it? Srsly.

Drastically unlike the baby section, the wine aisle in Walmart is always easy to find. It’s the only section of the store where there aren’t any hillbillies loitering around. Somehow, the lighting always seems more romantic, there is a soft cherubic humming in the background and an old man who looks like God usually walks by, nodding and smiling in my direction as if to tell me that, yes, all is well in the world.  After perusing the aisle and picking out a cheap wine that was ironically called Lucky Duck, I walked back to the Top Secret Hidden Baby Stuff Section, found one item on her list after twenty minutes of searching, and just decided to wing it and picked up a few other random baby things. The highlight of my epic shopping excursion occurred when I was walking up and down the pacifier section (which has like so many nipple shaped things, some of which say “orthodontic”..are babies wearing braces? What?) clutching my bottle of wine and shakily reading the list while a young couple with a baby stopped to stare in my direction. I was tempted to push it one step further and ask them if they knew where the coat hanger section was.

Forty minutes later, I was in my car with my baby crap and completely done. My breathing was back to normal, my arms had stopped bleeding from the zombie shoppers who had bit me in the store (kidding, biting only happens at voting booths) and I had thrown the stupid gift registry list out. I drove home, threw the clothes in my closet where I couldn’t see them, and plopped down on my bed with my glass of wine and Gourmet Lollipop. Then I took my birth control pill.

Girl, Your Dino Feet Be Trippin’

7 Nov

When you’re single and not entirely hideous, the best thing you can do is learn to laugh at yourself. Or, better yet, entertain yourself. One thing that I love doing to pass the time is taking funny pictures of myself on my phone. That way, I have a method of reminding myself to stop being such a boring spinster and have some fun. If you are single and have pets, I highly recommend you include them in on such uniquely fun activities.

Rawr/meow

See? Look how much fun we're having!

While driving fifty minutes to work each morning, a commute that I will soon give up when I move into my own apartment and become poor after spending too much money buying cute things for my place at Target, I decided to entertain myself by singing in my car. I know everyone has driven by this kind of person at least once: the person who is not just softly singing or humming along to the song, but is full-on Mariah Carey-ing it–long, deep breaths for holding notes, a small smile to please the audience and that trademark little hand gesture that one does when hitting the high notes (I’ve experimented and, yes, it is impossible to hit those notes without making such hand gestures).

After four weeks of singing through all of the Sara Bareilles, A Fine Frenzy, Fiona Apple and Adele songs  I have in my iPod, however, I came to the shocking realization that I was bored yet again. So, I decided to take it to the next level. You know how NPR has those awesome Tiny Desk Concerts ? Well, me and my Chevy Aveo hatchback have our own little Tiny Car Concerts going on.  That’s right: I sing my songs acoustically now. If I’m really bored, I’ll even add my own twist to a regular song. The only time this has gone terribly wrong was when I tried to sing a slow and dramatic version of Katy Perry’s “Hot and Cold.” I was on my third caffeinated drink of the day and feeling highly ambitious. Never again.

I think I’ve heard the whole “You have to learn to be your own best friend” thing a million times but, after graduating, starting a new job and becoming a west-sider for the first time in my life, I must say that there is some sense in this worn-out saying. Singing and taking funny pictures is something the entire Japanese population does, like, every day, and so why the hell can’t I? Going out and getting drunk with people only is fun so many times. Yet it’s the times when you are forced to be alone and entertain yourself when you realize what an interesting and creative person you can really be.

From Robot to Rawr!

3 Nov

I must admit that I absolutely love Zooey Deschenel’s new show on FOX, New Girl. While promoting before the show’s premiere, they used one word to describe Zooey’s character, Jess: adorkable. God only knows how much money was put into that marketing campaign. Jess, however, is a new class of character that has joined forces with other trendy and somewhat neurotic nerds on primetime such as The Big Bang Theory and Community. All of a sudden it seems that being an awkward nerd is more sociably acceptable than ever before.

That’s where I come in. I am the polar opposite of “adorkable.” I don’t have moments where I trip, my perfectly placed hair bounces about and my doe eyes widen as a million attractive male spectators quickly move in to help out. Instead, according to my family, I am tall and awkward and sometimes when I’m not thinking my hands are posed awkwardly like a dinosaur’s. I’m not adorkable, I’m a Reptard. A retarded fictional ice skating dinosaur. Seriously, it’s pretty much the best way to describe me.

I firmly believe that there are other reptards like me out there, waiting in the distance and believing that the rest of their species is extinct. Hopefully this blog, which will be taking over the now defunct Retail Robot, will convince enough fellow reptards, or adorkables, in to believing that they dodged the giant meteor, are roaming free and certainly far from expiration.

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