Wednesday, February 27, 2013

you always thought that i was stronger, i may have failed but i have loved you from the start

sometimes i can be a big procrastinator. and by sometimes i mean all the time, and by can be i mean am. it's really bad. and i want to change, but really it's more that i want to want to change and sometimes it's even that i want to want to want to change and who has time to do any changing when you're caught up in the number of want to's? not me, that's for sure.

take now for example, i'm supposed to be working on my independent study paper and instead i'm doing... well, everything else. i was supposed to have more done on this thing already. i was supposed to already have had a progress report meeting with the professor i'm reporting to. but i have nothing done, and because he likes me and thinks i'm a smart and responsible individual, he's okay with me not setting up a meeting yet. because he doesn't think i need someone to stand over my head to get something done. and he is so, so wrong.

i feel really bad because i really like this guy. he's awesome and possibly one of my favorite people here at mason. definitely in the top five. and he expects all this great stuff from me, because he really believes i have some potential for awesomeness and great achievement. and yet i'm sitting here doing not work and feeling bad about it but i cannot get myself to do any work. i can't.

this does not bode well for the rest of the phd process. i mean, the whole dissertation phase is basically me working on my own writing and stuff with occasional check ins with my advisers. and you know, i'm starting to realize just how impossible that is. i cannot work without a last minute breathing down my neck. you cannot write a forty page paper or an entire dissertation in the last minute. i need to get my act together.

just to clarify because the title may be misleading, this is not one of the professors that i fell in love with. i just think he's a super amazing and interesting person and in a world full of wastes of space he is most definitely the opposite of wasting his space.

*Fall for You - Secondhand Serenade

Monday, February 25, 2013

okay so i know that i already wrote a blog post today and that it's been literally years since i've spammed you guys with multiple posts in one day, but i am so incredibly excited right now that i have to document this moment.

long story short, please listen got its first stranger review, and he liked it! you can read the review here.  make sure you don't miss where he called it "brilliant and beautiful" and the part where he said that each poem "holds a great deal of emotional impact." i am seriously floating with excitement. does that make any sense? i don't care. i'm too excited to be coherent.


immediately after putting out the book a bunch of things happened and i wasn't able to promote it as much as i was originally planning. i've started a little bit now, but i've been dragging my feet about it, thinking that maybe i should stop being full of myself and assuming that people that haven't known me for years will care what i have to say. you know, good old doubts and insecurities. this gave me the confidence that i had in the planning stage. i am so excited guys. so excited.

you should totally go buy my book. 

i think too much

my brother is turning eleven at the end of march, and having recently finished the harry potter series and loving it (the books inspired him to write his own novel which he got a couple of pages into before deciding that novel writing is more of a summer activity) and spending the past five years of his life telling me that i am destined to a life of miserable muggleness but that there is still hope for him to be a wizard, there was really nothing else to do but to get him a hogwarts acceptance letter. which will be delivered to his bed while he's sleeping with a stuffed owl. so that he'll wake up to it on his birthday. and then there's also a wand and stuff. needless to say, i'm really excited about his present. it's like when you're younger and you get your friend a really cool gift and you're equal parts excited that you get to give her something so awesome and jealous that you're not getting it and so on the day of the party you want to swap out the gift for something less awesome of yours and keep the new thing for yourself but your parents won't let you so you kind of hate her for the rest of the day? no? i guess that was only me then.

but anyway, all of my harry potter excitement for him has got me thinking about the series, and here are some things that i have realized.

i've read the series countless times, which means that yes, okay,  i know harry hears lily's final moments when a dementor comes near him and my gosh harry stop thinking you're special you're kind of annoying just shut up already. but recently i really thought about that, and oh my god it is horrifying. like, imagine you heard your mom begging someone not to kill you, knowing that she was probably going to die, and then actually getting killed. i mean, it was always sad and terrible that harry heard that, but i don't know why i didn't grasp the magnitude of how completely horrible it was until now. like, i know he doesn't really remember his mom and never really got to know her, so it would be a gajillion times worse for us that actually grew up with our moms and maybe that's what my mind was thinking, but still. goodness gracious rowling.

also, why do all of the pets in the series get cool names like hedwig and errol and crookshanks and then neville's toad is just named trevor. it's bad enough that no one likes you because you're a toad and that means the loser of the pets, but here, have a boring human name with no awesome greek mythology story or anything behind it. (i am not an expert in greek - or any other - mythology and may very well be wrong about this. if i am, please let me know.) no wonder he was always trying to run away.

oh, and on the topic of harry potter, i feel really stupid that it took me so long to get this, but spellotape is a play on words of sellotape which i somehow did not know was what they called tape over in not-america? i spent a year overseas with people who had either lived in england all their life or were taught british english all their life, and i kind of thought that i had figured out most of the american-british-english discrepancies. apparently not. but i feel like i should have known this. so i'm sharing it here to a) document my slowness and b) share the fact with you in case you are just as clueless as i am.

on a different note, my brother (the one in the first paragraph) was complaining to me about werewolves and vampires yesterday. he was saying that everyone always says that they're immortal but you can kill a vampire with a wooden stake or sunlight and a werewolf with a silver bullet to the heart. if they can die, then they shouldn't be called immortal. i was saying that, while true, i think it's more that they won't die until they're killed, to which he responded, "well, i'm immortal until i die, too." and you know what? he's right. so mythical creatures should not be called immortal. it should just be said that they live longer or don't age.

 *If You're Gone - Matchbox 20

Thursday, February 21, 2013

these are things that i don't understand

okay, so i have a bookly confession to make (and also a moviely one) that i feel it is finally time to come to terms with. a few years ago i had heard enough reviews about how awesomely amazing the perks of being a wallflower was that i finally decided to just read it already. (most of the time i am very bad at reading recommended books and books that are known to be awesome. it takes me forever.) so i get the book and curl up with it, preparing for my mind to be blown. i was ready to laugh and cry and finally know the meaning of life. (those seemed to be the most common reactions to the book.) i started it and thought, meh. i got halfway through and thought, meh. i turned the last page and thought, okay i must be missing something here.

it wasn't a bad book, though i kind of wish it was. (at least bad books can be enjoyed for their sheer awfulness and incite some kind of strong reaction in me.) this book was just there. maybe, being in my first year or so of college, i was just too old to enjoy it. maybe there was the whole emperor's new clothes thing going on and i needed to be the little kid to point out that the guy was naked. maybe it was that we kept being told that charlie was some super english genius and yet we were reading his letters and i saw none of that genius in them. or maybe it just went right over my head. anything is possible. the point is, whenever someone would quote "and in that moment, we were infinite" and say it gave them chills, or refer to the book as the greatest thing they ever read and the book that made them who they are, i kind of wanted to demand they tell me what was so great about it and give them a list of actually great novels that they should read instead. 

and then the movie came out and i was like okay cool. it's been a few years since i read the book, the cast is awesome, maybe i'll finally understand the hype for this thing. but i came out of the theater thinking that i got it more in book form, and that's saying something. as people were going on and on about how amazing the movie was, i had to wonder if we were watching the same thing. the most i got out of the movie was that emma watson, though she had a flew slip ups, did a pretty good american accent and that the actors can, in fact, act. as for the story... well that went straight over my head. again. 

maybe i'm a book snob, (though considering some of the trash that i read and enjoy i highly doubt that.) or maybe i'm just stupid. but i really, really do not see what is so great about this book. there have been books that i didn't like but could see why other people thought they were the epitome of awesomeness. this is not one of those books. if you read and liked the perks of being a wallflower, please explain this to me. i kind of need to understand this.

on a completely random note, i had a pina colada yogurt for breakfast this morning and it just might have been the greatest most delicious thing i have ever eaten ever. 

*Things That I Don't Understand - Coldplay

Saturday, February 16, 2013

it's always been the same, same old story

sometimes, i look at my academic career and my book and my family and i start to think, "you know, maybe i'm not doing too bad with this whole life thing." but then i think of james potter and my self-esteem plummets. james potter died trying to protect his family. james potter stood up to the greatest evil the world had ever seen - wandless, mind you - when he was twenty one years old. he was fighting and dying for what was right when other people were busy celebrating the fact that they could finally drink legally. and on top of all that, he could ride a freaking broomstick, turn himself into an animal, and change mice into wineglasses. and suddenly, collecting degrees and putting out a book that a handful of people will read just seems so pointless and stupid.

and then i remember that james didn't have the internet to distract him and i don't feel as bad about myself. because you just know if wizards had access to the internet they'd be too busy procrastinating to do anything cool. voldemort would be too busy writing mean anonymous comments to people and sniggering to himself to try and take over the world. which would work out fine because dumbledore would be too busy watching videos of cats on youtube to stop him. sirius would be changing his facebook profile picture every three seconds, peter would have a tumblr full of images of food and celebrities, and hermione would get lost in wikipedia for hours clicking the random article button. ron would play fantasy quidditch, and fred and george would probably spend their time between cracked and buzzfeed.

and harry would just be standing there in the middle of the room screaming about how important he is, and his parents (who would have never died) would tell him to shut up and go to his room. and he would just always have this nagging feeling that things were supposed to be different, that every child alive should know his name. he would write about it on his blog.

*Father and Son - Cat Stevens

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

there's so much i need to say to you, so many reasons why

before i get right into this blog post that will be jumping from point to point like an ADHD kid with a sugar high, i'm just going to give a quick explanation (i will never not write an i after the first a in that word and then have to go back and delete. i've resigned myself to that.) about why my blogging, which has become more sporadic that regular lately, pretty much became nonexistent for what felt a lot longer than two weeks. see, my parents went up to CT to visit my grandmother and ended up staying longer than they expected because of nemo. (if you do not keep up with the weather of the east coast, there was a big snow storm up in new england recently. it was named nemo.) since i am no longer living in my parents' house and since we had to balance a bunch of things (like school, office hours, tae kwan do, feeding and homeworking the boys, etc) between the three of us (my sister, husband, and i) there was a lot of time spent in the car. time which i could not spend blogging because i was too busy singing along to the same four songs that the radio decides to play over and over and over and over and over and over. times that i was not in the car were spent in class, doing homework, preparing to get into the car, or not feeling like blogging. but my parents came home yesterday so regular programming will commence.

i had a moment over the past two weeks when i thought about how writing (blogging, editing my novel, writing anything new) was automatically pushed to the end of my priority list the minute things like this popped up. and how could i consider myself a writer (or even a wannabe writer) if i did not write? the one thing i know about writers is that they write. but then i thought about how pretty much everything gets pushed to the bottom of my priority list when things like this pop up and i felt okay again. (i have this possibly unhealthy tendency to put my family's needs, wants, and errant thoughts above my own that has been viewed as both a good and bad thing depending on who you ask, and something that i don't plan on changing either way because it's just who i am.)

another light bulb moment over the past two weeks was when i realized how much i hate people who walk on the wrong side of the sidewalk. there is a side for coming and a side for going, and if you don't know which is which then just follow the crowd. stop trying to be special, because you're not. you're just annoying. (i am not talking about people who need to cross over to get to a building and end up walking on the wrong side for a bit. i'm talking about the people who insist on being idiots.) 

also, i decided that contacts are the devil's creation and possibly the worst thing that i subject myself to on a daily basis. seriously. they get dried out three seconds after i put them in, they are scratchy and annoying seven times out of ten, and they give me the worst possible headaches if i keep them in for over five hours. so why do i keep wearing them? a mixture of convenience and self-acknowledged stupidity i guess.

there is an almost finished description of the thought process that goes into choosing which shoes to wear when it's cold and slushy outside in my drafts from last week, to which i say... really self? really?! that's what you decide to write when you have three minutes of writing time? you should be ashamed of yourself. 

some good news for the week: i finally got someone to agree to be a member of my phd committee! he doesn't want to be the head because he doesn't think he could help much, but he also didn't laugh me out of his office or tell me to drop out. in fact, he's the one that suggested he become a member. i also may have fallen in love with him a little bit. i think it's a combination of the fact that he was the first nice guy i talked to outside of my forensics family and that he's intelligent and passionate about what he does. oh, and his looks are nothing to sneeze at. 

i also got an email last week telling me that one of the fanfiction authors i favorited in high school had written a new story, and i kind of got really excited because i remember loving her back in the day. i still haven't had the chance to read it, and i'm slightly surprised that she's putting up a story seven years later, but i thought it was kind of weird that it happened shortly after i posted about fanfiction. (no i don't think that it was written because of my post. weird in the way that i said i would probably have another fanfiction phase eventually and then she pops up to lure me back in.)

anyway, in case of any future absences from blogging, i think it would be a good idea to go buy my book so you can have a dose of my words on standby. do it for yourself. also, my grandma has had a hard couple of weeks and feb. sixth was her birthday. a great present for her would be to buy her granddaughter's book. she'd love you for it. (as would i. forever.) do it for the elderly. 

*Against All Odds (Take a Look At Me Now) - Phil Collins