Wednesday, January 19, 2011

There's a world where I can go and tell my secrets to (19 January 2011)

There’s a place my mind has created.  It exists only in my dreams.  I’m not sure what triggers it, but it could be intense sadness, because I dreamed of it last night.
It’s a sort of Disneyland.  Last night it finally got a name: Disneyland East, because it’s in Arizona and thus east of the original Disneyland; however, Disneyland East is, first and foremost, a water park.
Last night I went, or tried to go, several times.  To get there, take the I-17 north.  I want to say that if you get to Indian School, you’ve gone too far.  A 2-lane exit is what you’re looking for—2A02, I believe.  It loops up, curves southbound under the surface street overpass, and takes you to Disneyland East which has no boundaries—it’s just crystal blue water and skies forever.  Just $45 to get in.  And the food is cheap.

If there is a Heaven, I hope it’s like this.

Pigeon Watch update (19 January 2011)

Day 5
He’s looking pale today.  If this is the same bird…..feathers look white today.  They didn’t yesterday.  Is he dying?  Is this why he’s all ruffled?  Animals know when they’re dying.  I don’t want him to die alone, but I’m human.  I don’t think like a bird.  I can’t impose my human sentimentalities on him.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Pigeon Watch over the past few days (18 January 2011)

Day 1 of Pigeon Watch
There’s this pigeon standing on the corner of the ledge outside where the spiky plastic things to keep birds away don’t meet.  I can see it from the second-story window.  It may be male or female, but I can’t tell.  It is, if nothing else, a rugged creature.  Feathers all ruffled.  Is it cold?  Is it defense?  Is it a mating display?
All ruffled up.

Day 2
It could be a pregnant female.  Maybe it’s just fat.

Day 3
I think it’s a defense thing.  I thought the puffed feathers may help to conserve heat, but that doesn’t make sense.  Those vented feathers wouldn’t hold in heat like tightly compacted feathers.

Day 4
Have I seen this bird before and forgotten?  Have I not seen it all—have I been oblivious to its existence?  If it’s been there this whole time, why am I just now noticing it?

Monday, January 17, 2011

I get so down. (17 January 2011)

Sometimes you don’t feel entirely wanted.  I know I’m a burden; I know it’s starting to get old having me around ALL THE TIME.
I don’t want this to be forever.  I don’t want to be a burden forever.
I’m 25 years old, nearly, but I’m living like an 8-year-old.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

16 January 2011

Forgot to mention yesterday about my altercation at the gym.
I was on the elliptical.  To my immediate right was a man on another elliptical, an empty elliptical, and then another man on the last elliptical in the row.  So we have Man A and Man B, separated by the empty elliptical, and they decide to have a goddamned conversation—SHOUTING!!! as though standing in opposite corners of a busy warehouse.  How obnoxious!  I said to Man A, “You know, it’s really not polite to shout indoors.”  Man A apologized, saying something about the noise in the gym and the distance between him and Man B.
“ Well, you could move closer.”  There was an empty elliptical!
And then Man B made a stupid mistake.  He said, “Oh, shut the hell up, woman!”  Oh, no no no…..
“Excuse me?!”
“Don’t tell us to move closer when there’s someone on that machine!”  Meaning the vacant elliptical, the elliptical that had been vacant long before they began their shouting.  And if someone had been there, do you think these two men would have engaged each other in such ridiculous volumes to begin with?  Bellowing at each other over the hapless person in between?  I think not!
I do not suffer bullshit to pass.  I informed the current Gym-Employee-in-Charge of the disruption to the collective peace and the subsequent harassment.  Man A ran up and tried to defend his friend—“He’s a good guy, he was just kidding around!”
Again, I call bullshit.  As I walked past Man B on my way to bigger and better fitness horizons, he started in on me again:
“I shouldn’t have said anything, I—“
 “No, you shouldn’t have said anything.  In fact, you should stop saying things right now.”  Walk away.  Break the wrist and walk away.
Go me!
Not much to report about today.  I am a fantastic cook.  And AGAIN!!!  JUST BECAUSE I’m quiet, DOESN’T MEAN there’s anything wrong!  I am NOT delinquent, NOT antisocial, and WHEN will I be able to stop explaining that to people?!?!?!

15 January 2011

Saturday, a lazy day.  And that’s fine because I really needed the sleep.
I go the feeling today that Michelle was mad at me.  She seemed a little brusque talking to me.  I think she may be starting to regret having me around.  I was afraid this was going to happen—that’s why I was so dubious about this whole arrangement to begin with.  She suggested that I plan dinner for the evening, which normally wouldn’t’ bother me at all.  But her tone…she seemed to be telling me, “You’re providing dinner tonight because you contribute absolutely nothing around here, you freeloading slob.”  That, added to her behavior the night before—
They had a guy over to set up their new computer, do all the data transfer, etc.  He was there for 7.5 hours, until 8:00 pm.  Michelle went out for Mexican takeout when he left; when she got home, she set the food on the counter, threw some placemats at me, and stalked out of the room.
So she’s allowed to act like that, but I’m not allowed to be a little quiet or even aloof sometimes?  I’m supposed to be “on”—chipper Shaina, 24/7?  It’s so exhausting.  They act like there’s some sort of delinquency in being relatively low-key.  I’m not a party animal.  I don’t mind going out from time to time, but I had so much of that in the years immediately following high school and it wore me out.  I still can’t stay up past 1:30 or 2:00 am without feeling nauseous.
So there’s that, and my fear in general of this whole school thing.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m totally excited, but a little afraid of the payment.  Job prospects don’t worry me so much, but oh, it’s a lot of money to get there.

Friday, January 14, 2011

14 January 2011

Whew, I am tired today.  I slept relatively well last night, but a whole workweek of restless, disjointed, generally uncomfortable sleep is catching up with me.
I found out yesterday that my very good friend is having a boy.  I was so hoping for a girl—I always do.  She seems happy though, so I’m happy for her, but I’m really glad it’s not me.  I can’t stand little boys—they’re obnoxious, they’re dirty, they pee EVERYWHERE (not just when they’re young, either), and they do stupid things.  Really, they’re just less-evolved females, and though they become more tolerable when they grow up, it’s a long way to get there.  That’s one reason I don’t want kids—if I found out I was having a son, I’d be completely distraught.  And when people hope for sons, I think they’re stupid.
There’s sushi tonight, but I’m not sure I want to go.  I am so tired and my stomach’s still not completely recovered form yesterday.  I just want to sleep.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Every little nest needs a bird (13 Janurary 2011)

There are those people, there will always be those people, who just annoy the piss right out of you.  I try not to get irritated.  I try to ignore the “tap tap tap” of feet going into shoes, the inane comments, and sing-songy preschool teacher naiivities, the overloud “internal” dialogue…..  But this person drives me nuts at best! and at worst, absolutely disgusts me.
I went to the gym (of course!) and since it was later, there were far fewer people than yesterday.  I’ll be glad when Jake and I can go at these later times and take advantage of the ebb of humans.
I have doubts every now and again about my present career path.  It’s not something I really panned—it just sort of fell into my lap.  At such times, I have to take a moment to calm down and envision it, and to ask myself if I’ve ever gotten tired of baking?  And I answer myself that no, I never have.  When I have the time and the resources, I don’t tire of it at all.
Will it ever rain again?  I really should live in the Northwest.

Check out this great MSN video: One Year In 2 Minutes

Check out this great MSN video: One Year In 2 Minutes

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Sestinas (11 January 2011)

In the hallway stood a stately clock
Given to a man and his bride, a wedding present
Back in their youth.  But now, old—
She passed five years ago in her sleep.
He recalled her beauty, though lines marked her face,
She’d smiled up at him one last time.

He bought her cherry trees for a present,
But she never made her birthday (78 years old!)
Nor saw the blossoms as she woke from sleep
--Delicate pink, like the blush of her face,
Which hadn’t faded in all this time,
These ticks and chimes of the patient clock.

The man, alone in this house, was very, very old,
And though tired, could not sleep.
Grief traced canals in his face.
He sat in the library most of the time,
Kept company by books and the hallway clock,
Which was chiming the midnight hour at present.

“Wish he’d leave so we could sleep,”
Said each wise book with its stoic face.
“He may stay up all night this time.”
Out in the hallway, the sentinel clock
Was a friend to the man, attentive and present,
And didn’t mind that the night grew old.

The man, weary, could not face
Another lonely night—“I’m running out of time.”
He thanked the faithful clock.
The wise books settled down for the present,
Shut up in their bindings, faded and old,
And fell into a dusty sleep.

A lifetime spent standing, keeping perfect time,
(Decades had passed before that clock),
The happy couple’s cherished present
Skipped one second, two—“I’ve gotten old.”
The man would not wake from his sleep,
And relief showed on his tired face.

Monday, January 10, 2011

10 January 2011

The countdown has begun.  I’m so excited—I want to do art again!  I want to make things!  I WANT TO DRAW NAKED PEOPLE AGAIN!!!!!  I miss the charcoal smudge embedded into my fingertips.  I miss the bold lines, the curve of a woman’s leg, the squares of a man’s shoulder.  I miss seeing the negative spaces—they tell as much of a story as the positive ones.
I miss art.  I will do art again. 
I watched Despereaux tonight and I enjoyed it, but it was a little scattered.  That’s the problem with turning books into movies—you lose so much detail and coherency.  Maybe I just need to read the books.  It’s just like Harry Potter or, dare I say it, The Golden Compass (read: The Northern Lights).  I can’t think of that movie without launching myself headfirst into the inaccuracies of it, so I’ll leave it for another day.
For now, I need to focus on my financial aid applications!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

9 January 2011

I hate it when people are bothersome for no reason. 
The gym was not as much fun today, simply because the exercises I had to do today were not as much fun as the ones I did yesterday.  But I made banana bread when I got home and FINALLY got file transfers to work from my iMac to my HP laptop.  Since Home Sharing on iTunes is absolute crap (it doesn’t work), this is fantastic for me!!!  
Btw, this video REALLY helped me out where everything else failed.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Cupcakes! (8 January 2011)

I had my cupcake class today at Sweet Basil!  (  What fun!  There were 7 different recipes (all of which I have a copy).  We paired off into groups and each group was responsible for 1 recipe (we made the Chocolate-Rolo Candy Cupcake Bites with Whipped Ganache & Caramel Drizzle and they were DELICIOUS!).  All the cupcakes were simply wonderful—even the minty ones, and I’m really not a fan of mint!  There will be pictures to come.  But sad! we couldn’t take any home!  Apparently, Sweet Basil has no food license and can’t allow people to take prepared food away.  So the inevitable upshot of all this is that I’ll just have to make each of the recipes on my own at home.  Oh darn, I get to bake.
After that I hit the gym and had an amazing workout, while watching some not-so-amazing news.  I’ve already said my bit about the assassination attempt on Representative Giffords, so I’ll leave it alone here.  Suffice to say, I’m disgusted by the rhetoric of hate and lies in this country, and it needs to stop, and I plan to do my part in making this happen.
Homemade brats for dinner makes me happy, and all things said, today was a good day.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Close my eyes and leap (7 January 2011)

Is it going to hurt? she wondered, but knew that it wouldn’t.  She knew that this was all perfectly safe.  People did it all the time without even a scratch, but with one amazing story to tell.
So she took a deep breath and launched herself.  Magnificent chaos! gravity and weightlessness.  From the ground it would have looked as though she were falling, but she was flying.  Gone was her stomach, tugged away in the tempest with all its butterflies, and she was simply free.  She could make any decision: pull the cord and sail gently to completion and success; do nothing and plummet to a wild and brilliant annihilation.
Amazing stories always start with a launch into the reckless unknown.  Take a deep breath.
Now jump.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

6 January 2011

Breakfast went so wrong today.  My first attempt at oatmeal overflowed in the microwave.  The second attempt didn’t cook quite right, so was more like hot water with some softish grains at the bottom.  All this could be remedied if I used instant oatmeal—you know, the kind in packets?  But I much prefer the texture of the canister-oatmeal, when it’s fully cooked.
I’m going to start drinking more tea, I think.  I had some kickass green tea at Got Sushi the other night—best I’ve ever had.  I think the problem I’ve been having with tea when I make it is that I let it steep too long, which I didn’t even know what a faux pas until a month or so ago.  And I was a barista.  For shame.  Honestly, I thought the whole steeping-for-a-set-limit-of-time thing was arbitrary.
I feel like I don’t have much to say today.  This has been the longest week ever—probably because I know I have SOMETHING BIG! to do on Friday—so I can’t believe it’s finally Thursday.
Maybe I’ll have more later.  Or tomorrow.  Whichever.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

5 January 2011

How do I get away with these things?  I woke up 13 minutes after I was supposed to be at work.  Oops!  Fortunately I get in an hour before anybody else, so I was OK.  Don’t get your panties in a bunch—I didn’t take lunch yesterday or today, so I think that makes up for it.
As for my plan, it is simply to market MYSELF—not as an employee, not as a “good candidate,” because I’m through with that.  If I’ve learned nothing else from this experience, I can at least say definitely that I DON’T BELONG IN AN OFFICE!!!  I hate this beige cubicle.  I hate these fluorescent lights (naptha lamps would be so much nicer :D).  I hate sitting all day!  I’ve gained 20 pounds since I took this job!  I wore a size 1 back then.  Now I barely fit into a size 7.  And I’m a workout FREAK.  In June of 2009, I weighed 97 pounds (I’m 5’3”), and at the behest of my family, started eating more than lettuce and vinegar, and stopped working out every day.  I got back up to a reasonable weight and could still fit into my skinny clothes.  I’m back to working out every day, and though I no longer starve myself, neither am I a glutton.  Still, I’m horrified to watch myself growing fatter and fatter, and the only thing left to attribute it to is this job!  I sit all day and I’m totally stressed and it’s taking its toll!
Part of my plan is to lose 30 pounds by the end of the year.  Go me!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

4 January 2011

We had a meeting today.  All meetings are fairly predictable, really.  If I had a company, my meetings would be hella fun.
Getting back to the topic, though.  We have a new…someone here.  A director, I think?  She is a very strong personality.  She’s direct, she talks quickly, and she’s often asking her next question while you’re still answering her previous one.
You’d think such a person would be intimidating.
But I found myself engaged by her, and more willing to speak up than in any meeting previous, where all participants were polite and docile and careful.  See what a warm and outspoken person can do?  And it made me think that maybe I’m stronger than I thought.  I have things to say.
I know I’m absolutely wasted here.  I’m very intelligent, I’m very creative, and I’m driven to change the world and make a name for myself.  Here in this beige cubicle, under these fluorescent lights, I am intellectually and creatively starved.  I can make no name for myself; I can’t do anything that will ever matter to me.
It’s about time I get out of here and put my plan into motion.

Monday, January 3, 2011

3 January 2011

For reasons of not wanting to be sued I shall, in my blog, refer to a certain someone in my life as L.  I was very sick to my stomach today.  I mean, I was sick.  I asked L if I could go home to rest a bit (when you've spent the morning being sick off and on, it leaves you feeling slightly drained).  She said I could leave when I could confirm that certain things (which could have been put off to the next day!) were done.  Of course, there were obstacles.  Of course, nothing was good enough.  OF COURSE! the unrelenting militant gave me even more work to do.  I sat in her office, shaking with nausea and exhaustion, and listened to her again enumerate all my faults and shortcomings.  And not only did I not get to go home and rest like I should have, I left 15 minutes late!!!
This is NOT fabulous.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2 January 2011

Is chivalry dead?  I wsa thnkign about this in the shower today.
Let me back up—I get all my best ideas around drains.  Toilet, sink, shower, bottom of the pool.  I would say it’s the water, not the drain, but I live in Arizona, so I’m not often around water in its natural environment (i.e. sans drain).
So chivalry—dead?  No, it’s not…but maybe it should be.  Let me explain.  I’m no feminist.  I believe women should have EQUAL rights but not SPECIAL rights.  In my opinion, chivalry affords women special rights to which men are not privileged.  My boyfriend would never slam a door in my face, but he has never opened the car door for me, and I’ve never expected it.  I think it’s a little sad when a woman can’t (or won’t) open her own door.  It’s just another way to make a woman into a child (much like she was in Victoria times, when a woman’s life was an endless stream of useless whimsy).  Chivalry benefits no one.  I don’t want a man-slave, nor do I want to be patronized.
I welcome all opposing opinions.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

1 January 2011

First day of the new year, of 2011.  Twenty-eleven, I’m trying to get used to saying.  This after 10 years of Two-thousand-something.  Two-thousand-eleven is just obnoxious, though, and is getting to be too many syllables.
I had a blowout today on the freeway.  There went my gym plans, but it gave me an opportunity to clean out my trunk while waiting for my rescue.  I’ve got pictures.  Thankfully, there was no damage to me or my car, traffic on the freeway was really light, and though I wasn’t in the best part of town, it was 3:00 in the afternoon and sunny out.
This is the year I want to live amazingly.  I want to focus on my happiness.
That’s going to be the gist of this blog, which I hope to make a daily thing.  It’s nothing spectacular; spectacular is what I want my life to be, and this blog is an outlet for that.  I won’t be cooking my way through any of Julia Child’s cookbooks.  I do plan to start baking quite a bit, and you may even get the occasional review now and then of movies, restaurants, whatever.
So there it is.  My year of living fabulously.  365 days, we’ll see how this goes…