29 March 2011

time Travel

Middle of the day, sitting at work, I check my phone to see the time and...

...7:47 at night?? It can't be past 3:00 in the afternoon... Thursday? It's not Thursday, it's Tuesday. ...June? Why does my phone think it's Thursday June 2nd?

But, wait! There's more...

I opened up the calendar to see if it would open up on today's date (March 29, 2011) and it opened to June 2009. WTF, right?

Somehow, between my walking to the restroom and walking back to the office to sit at my desk, my phone traveled almost two years backward in time.
I sent a text message concerning the amusing event to my husband, and as soon as it was finished sending, voila! it was March 29th again, of the year 2011.

What could have caused my phone to leap backward in time to 2009? Maybe it has to do with these cement walls (part of our post-industrialism architecture style...or something. it's the same reason that all the pipes are exposed and painted in visually offensive and appalling colors. the whole complex is like this. no matter how many stairs you climb, you still feel like you're in a basement.) or perhaps everyone carried by Verizon had a strange time-lapse at that exact moment.

Or, maybe, my past self of June 2009 needed to send me a message, a message of great importance concerning the safety and well-being of my family, and so conspired with the Boy Scouts of Camp Tifie (which is where I was working in June of 2009) to construct a mechanism to manipulate the time-space continuum so I could send myself a vital text message within the two minute span of the rift in time-space...but then my 2011 self sent a message to my husband and so my phone failed to retrieve the mysterious 2009 message, to the detriment of my entire future.

...except, I think I'd remember building a mechanism to bend time and space with a rowdy troop of boy scouts.
Better theory: It was a message from a parallel version of my past self that got cross-routed to me, rather than the parallel version of me.

Do I watch too much sci-fi? Or not enough? You tell me.

Or maybe it was just weird and I need to find better ways to amuse myself while I'm at work.

25 March 2011

how To Live without Regret

As you traverse through the hazardous regions of Life, you will meet several people. Some will be significant, others less so (some even lesser than less so), and they will all present you with questions - who you are and where you're from and what you believe - so they can come to know you. So you can come to know yourself. There's one question in particular that will come up time and time again, and you need to be ready for it. Someone, at some point in your life, is going to ask you "What's your most embarrassing moment?"

I honestly don't know why they do this.

I just know it happens.

De vez en cuando.

My response to these inquiries is always the same: "I really can't think of an embarrassing moement: I've repressed those memories."
This response works infallibly well for two reasons: 1)people always laugh (especially this one time when I said it to a student who was studying psychology - he was still chuckling about it hours later. I'm pretty sure he thought it was the funniest thing he'd ever heard in his life...or at least the funniest thing he had heard that day) and 2)they stop prodding you for personal stories of public humiliation.

It's a great response. I'm very proud of myself for coming up with it, and others tend to think I'm terribly clever for authoring it. But there's a secret to it. I didn't have to use an iota of imagination or wit to come up with it because...

...it's true.

I honestly can't remember my embarrassing moments. Or at least, not very well. Every time I try to recreate them in my memory, I get blocked. Literally black-out blocked. They are, by the very definition of the word, repressed.

If you are one of the few who happened to be present during one of my "most embarrassing moments" please, PLEASE, keep it to yourself. I'm happy in my repressed state of being right now, and I've heard it can be quite painful and traumatic to dredge up a repressed memory. Probably oughtn't to be attempted outside of the presence of a professional. O.o

I try to live my life in such a way that I will regret as little as possible. Everyone will have regret, I'm not trying to avoid it altogether, just limit it. Example:
"Should I do/not do this?"
"Well, would you regret doing/not doing this?"
"You have your answer then."
I've wondered if my repression of embarrassing moments is perhaps slightly unhealthy, but following my no-regret logic I conclude that if I can't remember the event, then I couldn't possibly regret said event. One cannot regret an experience if, as far as one knows, the experience never happened. If the goal is to live with as little regret as possible, then let's leave those moments unremembered.

So now you know my quick and easy recipe for living without regret. And you don't even have to bother with any of that complicated "self-acceptance" or "making peace with the world" junk.

You're welcome.

21 March 2011

wanted: New avoidance Techniques

Is there something inherently wrong with avoiding people?

I’m not talking about anything malicious or mean-spirited; I mean a mutual-avoidance. I’m referring to people who may have a different sense of humor from you and so you don’t prefer their company. Or perhaps your personalities don’t jive really well. Or you don’t have many common interests and so conversation runs dry pretty quick between the two of you. As long as it's mutual, it isn't wrong or hurtful, right?
For the sake of argument, let’s say that this other person is not as bothered by these things as you are, resulting in a one-way avoidance, rather than a mutual-avoidance.
(We’ve all been that other person, the one who’s just a little bit dense and doesn’t grasp the “mutual” part of the avoidance deal. I’ve done it, I’m not judging, but that doesn’t make it any less awkward.)
As time goes on, if they never catch on to the ‘hey, buddy, we’re avoiding each other’ cue, they’ll just keep talking to you, and finding excuses to get in touch with you. Where once it was minimally distressing to bump into them in the super-market, it is now aggressively bothersome. They become annoying, obnoxious and shockingly abhorrent.

If you could just discover a way to ensure your paths would never cross, then everything would be fine.

So why does the Universe keep insisting on throwing these people back into my path? Are human beings not meant to ever avoid each other? It’s as though the Universe is calling shenanigans on me, telling me that I have to try it again, but I’m not sure what I did wrong the first time. I’ll just continue to brush these people off with lies and insincere smiles, and continue to be genuinely shocked when they reappear later.

Let’s take Clinger, as an example.

I've known her for 5+ years now. Every time I try to cut her out of my life, she finds a way to sneak back in. (she clings, get it? so her name is Clinger? ho ho, I'm so clever) Deleting her number from my phone in no way affects her ability to call/text me so, to my chagrin, I've had to keep her in my phone. It's been over a year since I've seen or heard from her, but I keep her on Facebook and in my phone because you never know when she'll be back... *creepy Psycho music* As if on some imperceptible and unpredictable cue, she reappeared recently.

She saw me first, much to my dismay, and called out to me. She was looking at me with the cruel mockery of Fate written all over her face. She immediately engaged me in conversation, closing off my escape routes by tightening our proximity.

We went through the obligatory "How are you"s and "So where have you been"s, topping it off with the "We really ought to get together sometime to catch up."

I don't want to be rude here, guys, really I don't, but: Life has recently thrown me a curve ball and I'm currently dealing with the repercussions of that. I just want to go to work, come home, and sit in my apartment with my books and be left alone while I deal with Life. The details are personal and I don't much feel like spreading them around to everyone who feels like "catching up." What is so wrong with that idea? Just let me be my hermit-hobbit self.

There have been a lot of people on my personal "To Avoid if at all Possible" list who have popped back up in the last month. I think it's the Universe flaunting its own list of "Candidates to Replace Blockhead when he Graduates" because I could definitely see Clinger on that list. Until now it hadn't occurred to me that she was an eligible candidate, or even up for consideration.

I wonder what the Universe's decision-making process entails... Can people text in their votes? Will there be a random drawing? Is it like a raffle?
Or maybe the Universe is letting me have first pick?

That would be nice, 'cause truth be told, I'd much prefer to constantly brush Clinger off my shoulder than have Fungus Girl perpetually sprouting up in unexpected places.

18 March 2011

A quick Continuation

(this won't make a lot of sense unless you read the previous post; still entertaining, it just won't make much sense.)

Along the lines of improving my interpersonal communication skills, as was previously discussed, I would like to give you a glimpse into my daily dysfunction.

Picture this:
An average day in the office. Most of the faculty are gone for the day or teaching in classrooms; it's just me and Blockhead. A student comes in and sees me at the front desk, and so asks me a question (usually concerning the whereabouts of a certain teacher). As I open my mouth to respond, Blockhead quickly interrupts me to answer the question erroneously. When he's finished, I hastily correct him, thus delivering the desired information to the questioner. Blockhead then apologizes and talks ceaselessly about some tangent topic as he walks back to his desk and fades into unintelligible mumbling.
yes, this has happened more than once. several occasions, actually. we're falling into a quite a routine.
It would be so much quicker if he would refrain from answering every question asked in the office to anyone within earshot. Usually, I silently wish for him to stop talking and feel increasingly agitated while I wait for him to finish.

Until one fateful day,

I asked him to be quiet.

True story.

I held my hand up in the air, palm toward him, and said, "Stop...Blockhead, just wait a second...Blockhead, stop..." (I had to say it a few times before he stopped talking, but that's understandable, it was a rather unexpected change to our script) After I answered the student's question and said student went on his way, I explained to Blockhead that he had misheard the student's inquiry and I apologized to him for "shushing" him so abruptly.

I don't know what I thought would happen. Maybe I thought he would be offended. Maybe I thought he would start crying. Maybe I thought he'd complain about me to our supervisor. I honestly don't know what has taken me so long to be up front with him.
So, here's what happened:
He sat down at his desk and went back to watching anime. (yes, apparently we're paying him to watch anime. I'm confused about it, too.) He was not offended in the least (pretty sure it's not in his programming) and I was left wondering why I don't just react that way every time, since it obviously works so well.

So...why don't I? What, exactly, makes that so hard?

Geez, this is a hard question and I'm on Spring Break. Bag it, I'm gonna play Gamecube instead. I'll worry about this garbage on Monday.

14 March 2011

Genuinely happy For genuinely selfish Reasons

I haven't felt particularly witty, charming, or clever lately. Hence, the severe decline in blog-post regularity. Be that as it may, there have been a few happenings recently that may be of some import, or at the very least, of some small interest, to you.

On a slightly related side-note: the book(s) I read influence my speech and writing patterns at the time I'm reading them. Right now I'm reading Oscar Wilde (The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Importance of Being Earnest, and some assorted short stories). Does it show?

Item One: I'm employed again. Hoo-ha.

Item Two: I have to work with Blockhead again. Boo-hoo.

Item Three: Blockhead is graduating this semester!! *wild screams of jubilation*

Yes, yes, it's true. After a long and, what I imagine to have been, an arduous journey, Blockhead will rise to the noble rank of College Graduate.

What degree/certification he has officially earned has not yet been confirmed to me, but judging by his age, the classes he's talked about, and his general personality: I'm going to guess it's his 4-year degree.

Which is awesome.


It means I won't have to work with him anymore.

Ohmygosh I just had a terrifying thought: what if it's only his 2-year degree?? That means he'd be here for AT LEAST another TWO YEARS!

Woah, woah. Calm down. He has been at this school waaaaaay too long for that to be a possibility.

Besides that, there is an even larger significance of this event we must consider. When Blockhead graduates, moves back to wherever he came from and gets a job within his chosen field, he will leave behind a void. The Universe will sense this void and will inevitably work to fill it with some other hardy individual who will bring confusion and agonizing discomfort to my days.

I am quite sure this is how the Universe works because I have already had the privilege of screening some of the candidates. "Privilege" is perhaps an inaccurate description. Think of it more as a tantalizing torture device, employed by the Universe, to drench my would-be relief with anxious and fearful anticipation.

Fungus Girl is definitely at the top of the list. And let us not forget Trying-to-sell-me-insurance-and-I-can't-avoid-her-no-matter-how-hard-I-try Girl. (not a catchy pseudo name, I know. not even a good acronym...well I can't just pull these things out of thin air! give it time, I'll come up with something better.) There are a few others who have made appearances now and then, but these two are definitely at the top of the list.

My plan so far has been to sit and wait for these people to stop breeding so they'll stop abrading my life, but I begin to suspect that this plan will take longer than was originally assumed. I need a new plan, and I think it has to do with improving my inter-personal communication skills.

And while I'm at it, I should probably work towards being a more genuine, empathetic, and altruistic individual.

I think everyone here can just admit that that's going to take a while. An entire lifetime, at least. So let's start simple:

Congratulations on graduating, Blockhead. I think it's safe to say that no one is happier for you than I am.

05 March 2011

another Character defect

Yesterday was my birthday - sshhh! don't tell anyone - and my husband talked me into a having a party. We found a nice park in the canyon with a grill so we could serve food and the weather was forecast to be being sunny.


I was there at 2:00, when I expected the sun to be at its peak. It wasn't. It was grey, and an unpleasant breeze started up, and I was just thinking that I ought to just call the whole thing off, when the first of the guests arrived.


There was conversation, smiles and laughter, but we were lacking a crucial ingredient: sunshine. After about half an hour my friends decided to go home, it was just too chilly, and so wished me a happy birthday and departed. And wouldn't you know it, about ten minutes after they left...

...the sun came out!


More people came, food was cooked and served, eating and mingling and acquainting commenced (a friend of mine even provided face-painting. woah). We were warm and happy for about an hour and a half. As people got their fill of food and talk, they left for their respective homes. As the people dispersed, dearest husband and I cleaned up, loaded up the car, and went home to bed.

And that was...that. *shrug* I'm not really sure what to think. It was nothing memorable, nothing particularly meaningful...I'm not sure it even qualified as "good."

This is why I don't do parties: I have no direction, no vision, no purpose behind it; simply put, I just don't care. I think the day would have been better spent with a book, a bowl of icecream, and perhaps a walk through the sunshine-dappled canyon with my husband.

No offense intended to those of you who came to the party: I was, in fact, quite pleased to see all of you. I wish only to apologize to you for not caring enough to organize a more entertaining get-together.

Remind me to not let my husband talk me into another party next year. I'm pretty sure I said that last year, but this time I mean it.

On a brighter note: my birthday falls on the same day as National Grammar Day. (see, I found it on this website, so it must be true!) w00t.