Sunday, September 11, 2011

It's Probably Incoherent (Because Most Posts About Writing Usually Are)

I don’t know when it became so hard to do what you really, really like to do. I’m not talking about the interference from work and school and the general responsibilities of real life. I’m talking about that fear of failure and that depletion of creativity that comes from realizing you’re not very good. How is it that stories go around finding people? I read all these inspiring biographies about people who just had an idea fall into their head. It reminded me of this documentary I saw one time where a smart little boy told his mom that he had seen her from Heaven and knew that she was the only one who would be able to raise him. Is that how stories work? Do they look down at the world from the cosmos and single out the one person who could best express them to the general public?

Or is it random happenstance? Is it eating too much chocolate before bed and then having crazy dreams? Is it constant perseverance: taking time to type meaningless word after word so that the document isn’t blank anymore? And can someone please explain to me how I ended up with all these characters and no story? I did have a story once upon a time ago and I remember thinking that it was the most important story in the world. I had this inescapable thing to project it out into the world. It demanded to be told and I was just the hands it used to compose itself. But now, I don’t really understand the story. Maybe that’s because I know how it ends now and it ends well for every party involved.

It’s like that favorite picture that represents a fantastic point in time that gets all wrinkled from constant use and exposure to the elements. Then, one day, you realize you have other great memories that need a space on the wall and so, gently, you take your favorite picture and put it into an album before tucking it onto the shelf. It’ll always be there when you need it but there are newer pictures that represent the same happiness. And the old one? Maybe you don’t talk to those people as much anymore. Maybe you got into a nasty fight with the girl to your left in the photo.

I don’t know. I just know that it’s the picture on the shelf now. It’s still beautiful and it’s still wonderful and it will always be remembered. There’s just other things you want to see on your nightstand.

And then there is all the other stuff. The general responsibilities. I’m so tired. I’m always so tired and I can’t always justify staring at a blank Word document when I hardly have time to breathe anyway. Maybe I’m not that lucky person that a story is just going to find one day. I just have my characters. And they roll around, joke around and flourish in a thousand and one different environments. But they don’t tell a story. They just are. Very much in the same way that I just am. And since when did I decide it was okay to start writing in fragments? Sheesh.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


So today was J and mine's 25 month-iversary. Don't worry, we don't really celebrate each month but we like to remember it and make it a point to be extra cute :) BUT TODAY, when my roommate came with the mail, there was a mysterious package amongst the envelopes. Being the horribly impatient person that I am, I ripped it open. Kind of. I was deterred by the duct tape and the mailing label. But after that, I managed to extract the surprise and it was....

I was obsessed with this game when I was a little kid and it was the only video game I've actually been good at (besides Mario Kart. Word.) and ever since finding my GameBoy Color a few months ago, I've been keeping an eye out for it. I hadn't had any luck and J knew that I was pretty much fed up with the whole endeavor so he went ahead and found it online :) And it got here just in time. It might seem lame but it was pretty exciting when it happened! Especially considering the fact that I'd been working nonstop from 9-8 on only 4 hours of sleep and was in a less-than-happy mood.

And speaking of crappy days, tomorrow's going to be the longest day of the week. I have a group project with a bunch of people who insist that we be at the library from 7 pm - 1 am on a project that takes maybe three hours :| On the bright side, the next time you'll hear from me, it'll be Friday!!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Wedge and Veg

So I normally don't post recipes for 'real food' because cooking's J's thing. Not mine. I'm more the baker in the relationship BUT tonight, I stumbled across something delicious that I just have to share. My friends, I present: Wedge and Veg.

I'll admit, the recipe's not really mine. When I lived in London, I saw one of my flatmates making this one night and it was so good, I bugged her for the recipe when I came back to the States. I made it once and it didn't turn out so well but I made it again and goodness. gracious. That is all.

So how do you do it?
Cut up as many potatoes as you want any way you want. (See? Not a very good recipe writer). I cut up four Yukon golds in both cube and wedge shapes.
Next, cut up whatever vegetables you want in it. I went for red pepper in wedge shape.
Spread the root vegetables onto a baking sheet covered in foil.
Then, drizzle olive oil over them before adding paprika and curry powder (to taste but you want more rather than less)
Let bake at 425 for about 25 minutes.

I went ahead and put my pepper into a bowl where I mixed in the spices and the oil. After the potatoes were in for 25 minutes, I put the pepper on top and let it bake for another 15 minutes.

The result?
and it is so delicious, it is just ridiculous. I made it as a snack but I'll probably end up inhaling the whole thing in about an hour.

I'm sorry the recipe is so... lacking but I had to get this out into the universe. You'll thank me for it later.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

College Football

Look, I'll be real with you: I go to a college that's not very good at football. For my entire undergraduate career, we've been the butts of jokes. We psych ourselves up for the games but really, we all know how it's going to end. It's always been kind of a bummer being that team. So today, when we went up for our first game against a nationally ranked team, we all knew what was going to happen. We were going to go stand in 100+ heat (FACING THE SUN!!), spend way too much on water bottles and have to sit in unbelievable traffic on the way back, listening to depressing songs and the cheers of the other team.

For most of the game, though, it looked like we were going to win. It was incredible how far ahead we were but we're pretty well-known for letting it all go in the fourth quarter. And we did. The other team caught up and then PASSED us with 4 minutes left. Now, normally, I don't care about things like football. I don't understand it and it kind of makes me annoyed sometimes but today, I couldn't help but watch. It was like a trainwreck, watching people drop the ball and trip over themselves. With a minute left, we made a field goal. 2 point lead. And we held onto it. And we won. WE. WON.

I don't think I can convey how often this never happens. We haven't beat a nationally ranked team since the budget was balanced (and we all know it's been a while). And we rushed the field. And we waited in traffic and spent way too much on water bottles but for once, we were the people cheering. We got to be on top. And it felt pretty good :)

I'll try to get pictures of it up tomorrow but it's been a long day. Beeteedubs, if you're into the kind of sporty stuff, this is a 4 minute summary of what was probably the most stressful hour of my life. Enjoy :)

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Thesis Things

Sometimes I write about happy things, sometimes I write about sad things. BUT, I do try to type about things relevant to me because at the end of the day, isn't that what most blogs are? Anyway, the latest adventure I'm launching on is called 'Writing a Thesis'. You see, I'm in the Honors college at my undergraduate institution and as I go into my senior year, I'm expected to write a thesis and defend it in April. If I don't do it, I don't graduate from the Honors college. Almost only counts in horseshoes and something else I've forgotten.

Why am I telling you about this now? Well, today is the lucky day I get to write my thesis statement. Basically, I'm talking about Argentina and Guatemala. Back in the 70s and 80s, they had a rough time politically. Like, they killed a lot of people. But from all this horribleness came a few good things and I'm choosing to focus on one in particular: CSOs created by and for women.

What is a CSO you may ask? Well, its an acronym for Civil Service Organization which you could probably google and understand it better than I do. ANYWAY, it may come as a surprise but with a few token exceptions, women weren't too active in the political climates of their countries, ESPECIALLY in Guatemala where a big chunk of the population didn't even speak Spanish but instead, a language indigenous to their regions. Now, I had known about the Argentine 'Dirty War' from the start of my Latin American Studies education but I had no clue about what had happened in Guatemala. Which is actually horrible. I couldn't read the primary sources in one sitting. I cried a few times. I can honestly say it was emotionally exhausting research. But these groups of women chose to stand up for themselves, and their rights. For the rights of their children and their disappeared/deceased families. They truly are inspirational. The Madres are relatively well-known in the international community but the Guatemalan widows are still largely confined to Guatemala. They don't receive aid. No one really knows about them despite the fact that over 200,000 indigenous peoples were killed just because. Over a quarter of a million children were left orphaned. And it's not even considered a genocide despite the fact that what happened to these people more than qualifies it for that term.

Basically, my thesis is focusing on answering the question: why? Why did they develop so differently? I'm procrastinating writing this in fancy terms AND, if you happen to be desperate for a thesis idea, I already turned in the proposal so people would know if you stole it! HOWEVER, if for some reason you want to know about either of these groups or their histories, feel free to do some Googler-research but just be warned: it isn't happy.

MOVING ON, the first football game of the season is Friday which, coincidentally is the day I have to go out of town to pick up the pottery J and I painted on our anniversary. Wait, did I tell you what we did for our 2 year? No? I'll get to that soon, I promise :)

Happy sleepings, everyone!