Monday, April 30, 2007

A blog is nothing but Self-Indulgent

I've been letting a lot of other people define me lately. With their assumptions, with their actions - with what they're not saying. I've let my own insecurities make me feel less; less deserving, less talented . . . worth less.

And today I reached my limit.

It felt good. It reminded me of who I want to be, who I am. What I'm capable of. What I deserve.

I put "Take Me or Leave Me" on my headphones on repeat and ran. And ran. And ran. I put the speed much higher than normal and I went as fast as I could. My lungs burned and my side ached. My knee and ankles, my hips felt broken - but I kept going. Because I finally felt in control. I finally dropped all the things I thought people wanted, what I thought was expected of me, and I just went back to me. Feet pounding on the treadmill, breath burning.

I threw away all the baggage that had blinded me to what I want and what I'm willing to accept. I focused on what was important.

And when I got off, shakey and sore, I was ready to face the world again.

On my own terms.

And so . . .

Dear Sir and/or Madams,

I'm afraid in our dealings you have forgotten some very important facts. I have decided to write it all down, lest you miss or forget them again. And to remind myself. It's obvious we both have some recollection issues.

I am a talented and smart designer. Try finding that - it's hard. I have 9 years experience in an industry that is a mere 15 years old. And that's giving it a couple years' credit.

I am a damn good presenter. I am well-spoken and well-read. I will as easily discuss the latest Wired with you as Neruda or Nietzsche.

I am, while not model beautiful, striking when I want to be. And will as easily strike if I feel something important to me threatened.

I can make sure you remember me for a long time to come, and will do so on my own terms.

I am an artist. My painting is rusty, yet still very much not an amatuer's doing. My writing's not perfect, but I can hit the right tone and combination of words from time to time and pull a compelling story out of the air around me.

I can and will affect you. I am no small thing. I am no meager asset, nor a person to be tossed aside or undermined.

I love with ferocity. I do so unflinchingly and unwaveringly.

I try to live in the same manner.

I am starting again.



I am taking from this world what I deserve. I suggest you stand aside. I'm in no mood to apologize, and nor shall I.

Not anymore.

Beautifully Written

" . . . .We do not rely solely upon science and reason, because these are necessary rather than sufficient factors, but we distrust anything that contradicts science or outrages reason. We may differ on many things, but what we respect is free inquiry, openmindedness, and the pursuit of ideas for their own sake.

. . .We are not immune to the lure of wonder and mystery and awe: we have music and art and literature, and find that the serious ethical dilemmas are better handled by Shakespeare and Tolstoy and Schiller and Dostoyevsky and George Eliot than in the mythical morality tales of the holy books. Literature, not scripture, sustains the mind and—since there is no other metaphor—also the soul. "
- Slate: God is Not Great

Go read it, I agree wholly with what Sam said about it - "I could not have written it better."

For anyone who wonder what spirituality is like in our home, or what the Church of Sam must be like, I figure this is a good introduction.

I'd love to hear what you think of it. . .

Friday, April 27, 2007

How did I know I wanted to Marry Sam?

In answer to your Question, Karen. :)


I don't know, exactly. It was like a million small things suddenly adding up to something big.

I met him at a James Taylor concert, and found an ally in him the next morning as he and I were the only ones (out of the tens sprawled across the various beds, couches, and floors of my house) that had to get up and go to jobs.

When I saw him a week later in Salina at Carrie and Joe's wedding I thought he was handsome, and kind. The kids followed him like a piper, he drank like a sailor, and laughed like a clown. That was enough alone to make me pause. But Carrie and Jamie were desperately throwing him and another of our friends together, so I let it alone.

Weeks later he showed up at Sarah and I's first ever S&M Birthday Bash. We drank way too much, danced just the right amount and stayed out in the parking lot talking until I almost didn't have time to catch my 6am flight to LA.

So initially he made good impressions. I was attracted to him for sure. He was funny, he loved to travel and actually DID . . he had a "real" job, he had plans . . . . Really I fought so long against being with him because he was so intensely intertwined with all my friends from home. I mean, he was FAMILY to Joe and Carrie.

And that, well, that was the major strike. I didn't want a relationship that was meddling and gossip fodder. I didn't want a relationship that wasn't just me and him. And I wasn't sure that would be possible. It freaked me out more than a little. So whenever there was an opportunity to keep him at arm's length, I did. Even after we started flying thousands of miles back and forth to see each other.

I wish I could point to the moment everything changed, but the thing is, I think I always knew he was it. There was a moment at Carrie and Joe's wedding where I looked through my camera lens and saw him dancing - having a wonderful, fantastic time - and I shot it. This pic of him strutting toward me, arms outstretched, ornery look on his face . . . I remember seeing that photo later and not being able to get him out of my head.

There was just something about him.

I knew. I just knew he was going to be something important in my life. I just wasn't sure what.

But that's different than knowing we'd get married. I hoped for it. Not even that long after he first came to visit me in New York, Memorial Day weekend 2002.

But we took a trip to Pennsylvania in December of that year, and that - that is when I knew I wanted to marry him. For sure, no doubts. We went to a wedding where we knew no one but the bride and groom, out of the five hundred people there - and had a blast. He carried me up three flights of stairs to our hotel room cause my feet hurt so much from all the dancing . . . we drove into Pittsburgh and ate at Denny's and watched football games and did totally normal stuff and I realized then that that's what I wanted: totally normal stuff. With him.

And we decided that weekend he would move to New York. He never made me feel bad about wanting to stay here. About never entertaining even the THOUGHT of going to Chicago. We talked about what neighborhood might be nice, what furniture we would have, we acted the fools in a photo booth, we went and saw "Big Fish."

I remember sitting in the theatre holding his hand knowing we were about to start creating our own strange and wonderful stories. And it felt good. Really good.

It felt like home. And has ever since.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Karen did this with her blog

And it was wonderful. I answered the questions for her and she did for me and it was awesome. And its been way fun to read her answers for other people, too. So cool!

It reminded me that sometimes we should take the time to tell each other why we started. Why we continue, even when the road gets bumpy. Today is an anniversary of sorts, and I have always held it dear to make sure I told those I love, that well, I love them, SO many things can change in an instant.

Reading Karen's answers for me took me back years and brought so fresh to my heart that lifetime ago when we met. And reminded me, that even though things have been crazy in all the time since, why I believe we will always be friends.

True friends, somehow, despite ourselves. :)

1. Tell you why I friended you.
2. Associate you with something - a song, a color, a photo, etc.
3. Tell you something I like about you.
4. Tell you a memory I have of you.
5. Associate you with a character.
6. Ask something I've always wanted to know about you.
7. Tell you my favorite user picture of yours.
8. In return, you must post this in your LJ.

SO play along! Post your answers and I'll post mine. It'll be fun, I swear.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

It's Perfect Outside Right Now

Sam just texted me to tell me he just caught his first foul ball (at a game I was supposed be sitting next to him at).

I'm working.

I have nothing additional or good to say further about that.

So instead, I'm sharing pics of places I'd RATHER be.

With baby turtles.

Near the ocean.

In fact . . .
I actually PREFER Hell to this.

But enough whining. I have to finish up and then clean our apartment for guests. I know despite a few missed weekends and beautiful days - what I do is awesomely fun and useful. And appreciated. I'm a lucky girl.

But you already knew that.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007


It's all over the news, people crying, being carried, running.

This morning on Good Morning America they interviewed the campus reverand (priest?) and asked him what one sentence he found comforting. He fought back tears and said "God is here, God is here." He lacked conviction when he said it, though you could tell he said it with great faith, great hope. Because perhaps faith and hope are all that's left in those kinds of situations.

I can't relate to the fear, the sheer terror that must have swept across that campus yesterday. My life has been resoundingly safe and steady. I cannot imagine the sheer magnitude of loss, the tipping of the scales into a deep void where uncertainty waits, sadness looms and fear dominates.

But I have walked across a campus filled with despair and loss and it's a feeling I will never shake. Ours was a small, close campus. Our loss was merely one.

And yet.

I remember the strange silence that followed in the coming days. The obvious absences from classes, the stoic and awkward presences in them. I remember hundreds not knowing what to say, and tens reaching out for anything. Any comfort at all. Standing looking down into that void.

A dear friend of mine was touched by the loss, in a way I'll never be able to fully know. She looked at me, as dusk fell in our plaza under a giant palm tree and asked with a look in her eyes I'll never forget - will it ever get better? WIll it stop hurting?

And I wanted to say yes. I wanted to give her a timetable, a date. A place she could look forward to getting when all this would be past. When the heartbreak would cease: when things would feel safe again.

But I couldn't.

And that is when my heart broke. That is why now, watching those students on the television breaks my heart still. I don't know what their worlds will be like in the coming years, in the coming decades. I don't know what this world holds for them. I just know that I hope for them what I hoped for my friend all those years ago.

It may never stop hurting, the loss may never be less. But over time the joys mean more, the laughter becomes more precious. And that somehow makes it easier. Over time, that all somehow brightens the darkness.

Friday, April 13, 2007

25 Things

My friend, Jen, just started her own official blogger page. (Well, not *just* - I was late to the game as I never check myspace. But I just did and she listed her new blog and, well, all this rambling is basically me saying "yay! jen! welcome!)

Someone should fine me for how I just typed all that out up there. *sigh*

ANYway. As I was catching up on Jen's entries I noticed she did a list about herself, and I loved reading it as I'm just getting to know her, and think she's the coolest. It was fun learning new stuff about her. I figured maybe it'd be fun to make my own list. And so I shall - because a blog is nothing but self-indulgent, right? Here we go.

25 Things About Me

  • I'm an incredibly loyal, yet sadly often-absent friend. I hate the phone with a passion, and sometimes refuse to answer its ring for days.

  • I hate tomatoes and refuse to eat them. I will spend inordinate amounts of time picking them out of my food. However, I love bruchetta, salsa and ketsup.

  • I was born in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. I only lived there two years. I have always instinctively thought of the ocean as home.

  • I cannot stand the mere thought, let alone actual sight of, the insides of eyes. So much so that I have never put my contacts in anywhere near a mirror. It skeezes me out.

  • I have two modes: excessively compulsively clean or total slob.

  • My talent is art and design. I firmly believe this a just a skill anyone can learn. I just got lucky with natural instinct.

  • I have always and will always wish I had a musical talent. I want nothing in the world more than to be able to sing. Well.

  • I'm thinking of taking Irish fiddle courses this fall. Or Gaelic. Or step class. I want to prove to myself I can learn something new.

  • I'm a good dancer. A better cook. A decent horse-rider.

  • I want to dye my hair purple, for reals.

  • My favorite dessert of all time is slow-churned vanilla bean ice cream with Hershey's chocolate syrup. Hands down, by miles. Nothing fancy for me.

  • I always cry after the first act. The one time I didn't - I walked out of the show.

  • I have a secret wish to write a book someday and have it published.

  • I compulsively use the semi-colon. I have no real grammatical and editorial knowledge at all.

  • I feel like I should long for a house in the suburbs with a yard. I really just want a two-bedroom on the Hudson.

  • I always cry after someone sings the national anthem. No matter how angry I am with the government.

  • If we have a boy I want to name him Wylie after my grandfather. A girl, after "Jack" from Jack and the Beanstalk. I want them to have a strong, interesting names. I will not ever call her "Jackie."

  • I devour books like water. When I'm not engrossed in one, I feel off kilter. When I find a good one I'm hard pressed to do anything but finish it.

  • I get sick, on average, once a week. I get horribly angry at people who take their health for granted. This often means getting angry at myself. I'm trying to be better about this.

  • I won't eat red meat, except for McDonald's cheeseburgers and chicken fried steak sandwiches. Both of which I crave fairly regularly.

  • I want to be brave and adventurous. In reality, I'm a huge scaredy cat.

  • I've met a presidential candidate, a Russian tycoon, and Jay-Z. One of them thought I was hot and said so.

  • I don't believe I'll ever not feel like the awkward, nerdy, uncool 12 year old I once was.

  • I can watch the world pass for hours and never get bored.

  • The best decision I ever made was to invite this man to come on up and see me sometime in New York City, the night before I moved there.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

What I've been up to

Or at least part of it. Miniscule part. But fun to share.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007