I'm only here tonight because of you. You are the only reason I am. You are all my reasons.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Musings: Lasik Surgery and the Apocalypse

Do you ever wonder what you would do if the world ended? The apocalypse could come in any form - alien invaders, nuclear fallout, the hellfury described in Revelations, or [God forbid] zombie epidemic. If you were one of the survivors, how would you handle it? What would you do?

Well, I don't have to wonder - I already know exactly what I'd be doing.

Walking around like a blind buffoon, that's what!!
Allow me to explain.

You see I, like millions of other people in this world, wear contact lenses. I would be pretty much helpless without them. I have glasses that I wear every night to bed - and on occasion by day when my eyes need a good rest - but they really aren't nearly as convenient as contacts. But let's be honest: both are pretty much useless in a post-apocalyptic world.
When everything looks like this -

I hardly think I'm going to have the time, resources, and clean water to perform one of these maneuvers on a daily basis:

And honestly, what are the alternatives? Putting in contacts with dirty fingers, no cleaning solution, and God only knows what living underneath my fingernails is obviously not the answer...
Have you ever put in contacts without realizing there's a speck of fuzz on your fingertip? TORTURE. As in, I-wish-I-no-longer-had-eyes sort of pain.
Sleeping in and keeping your contacts in perpetually isn't really much of an option either. After one night's sleep, your eyes feel sticky and dry and painfully sensitive to light. And even if you could get used to such red-eyed misery - contacts don't last forever. Are you going to tote around a year's+ worth of contacts in your survival kit? Hardly.

As for sticking with glasses for the apocalypse? That's a one-way ticket to "Hi, I made it through the first ave of oblivion to humanity only to get sidelined by a wayward zombie bite/ray gun to the face, all because I lack any sort of peripheral vision." Yeah. Great. If I'm going to survive the horrors of an apocalypse, I don't want to go out in the very first scene of the next act because of something so silly. Plus glasses are named as such for a reason as they are - yes, made of glass. Which means they will basically be shattered within a week, tops.

Which leaves me ultimately blind, a sitting duck waiting for the harsh new world to come snuff me out.

So I've decided this potential future dilemma needs to get sorted out before shit hits the fan and it's too late for action. The only REAL answer is to get Lasik surgery on my eyes.

As if - oh yeah, no big deal - I can afford that multi-thousand-dollar procedure any time I damn well please. And though it would be nice to not deal with contacts on a daily basis, my aforementioned reasons are hardly valid explanations for saving up the money, putting off buying a house, not having my dream wedding (to be featured in future posts, for sure), etc.
Not to mention... Lasik is some scary shit, simply put.
Have you seen how it's done?

And that's just a DIAGRAM to explain the procedure, all prettied up to not make you afraid.
I couldn't stomach posting ACTUAL photos from the surgery to my site, because I don't believe in making this blog a destination for masochists and fans of torture porn. (On a side note - the horror movie franchise, which is pretty much directly responsible for this entire post to begin with, could make a killing - har har - on movies about deranged opthamolagists. The shudder factor would be off the charts.) And even with the transparent metallic "suction device"/clamp nonchalantly thrown into the diagram, as if almost an afterthought... I. Am. Scared.

So the real debate I have to come to grips with here is not so much "However will I afford to get my eyes repaired permanently?" That's what winning the lottery is for.

No - the real question is which am I more afraid of? Laser beams and "suctions devices" quite literally IN my eyes? Or hypothetical blindness and death by four horsemen?

To tell you the truth... I'm not sure I even want to survive the apocalypse. It sounds like a real drag.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Lessons in Cohabitation: Expect the Unexpected

Another series I'd like to embark on is the exploration of the lessons I've learned during my first foray into cohabitating with a significant other.

In May of this year I moved from Atlanta, GA back to my Florida hometown (home county, really) and into an apartment-style condo with my boyfriend Patrick. Moving in with an SO is a big step no matter who you are, but to go from long-distance-love to boyfriend time all day every day was quite an adjustment to say the least. To say the very least. Some days it is glorious and everything I'd hoped for! But there have been other days that are just.plain.painful. But every challenge is potential for a new lesson learned - and that is what I'd like to chronicle here.

So these are my tales of adventure and words of wisdom taken from... cohabitation.

LESSON 1: Expect the Unexpected

Living with boys is nothing like living with girls. Not to state the obvious, but it's just not. I've had boy roommates before (no romantic involvement) and I do feel like this statement applies across the board from guy friends to brothers and usually boyfriends.
As a general rule, boys are
a) messier,
b) louder, and
c) considerably less dramatic than girl roommates.
They don't want to borrow your clothes, they don't get huffy and expect you to read their minds, nor do they whine about you leaving dishes in the sink/clothes in the dryer/[insert shared living space offense here]. They like to live and let live.

So those are the things you can expect. But they're still BOYS. And grown men in their mid-late 20s are essentially still little rambunctious boys, only they have jobs and pay their own bills [typically]. (So I suppose in some ways we aren't terrribly different from each other.)
Which means they laugh at poop jokes, like to wrestle, and don't mind a little mayhem in their lives. So things tend to happen that we as girls just wouldn't ever picture in our wildest scenarios.

For example: I never expected that I would get slammed upside the head by a soccer ball as I lay in bed at 6:30am on a Wednesday morning, while only partially awake and largely unaware of my surroundings. But alas, that happened this very morning! I can't think of the last time I went from zero to an INSANE-WITH-FURY screaming She-Hulk in 2.5 seconds... but oh yes - that happened as well.
It all went down a little something like this:
6:15am Patrick gets out of the shower, puts on his underoos and begins playing with the cat

6:20am I partially wake up, Patrick plants a kiss on my forehead and asks when I expect my alarm to go off. I groggily mumble something akin to "mmmsish-forthy" into my pillow in response. All seems well.

6:25am As I hear kitty-playtime escalating around me , I grumble a warning to Patrick to please not make the cat jump on the bed, as he can get clawsy during playtime. [See below for further explanation.]

6:28am Presumably Patrick kicks the soccer ball toward Hermes - which we both know he is afraid of - and Hermes flees the room. Patrick sets his sights on my sleeping form.

6:29am I feel a soccer ball land on the bed near me. I lethargically push it off the bed, not even bothering to open both eyes.

6:30am I hear a crash as Patrick kicks the ball onto his bedside table, and before I can even grumble my disapproval, he catches the ball on a bounce (from off the table) and kicks it up into the air over the bed... where it promptly smacks me in my eyes-closed half-dream-filled HEAD.

6:31am Hellfire fills the bedroom.
I hurl the ball across the other side of the room (thankfully not breaking anything) while bellowing "What the FUCK are you THINKING?!?!?"
I sit up, fling the sheets off, kick my legs over the side of the bed and proceed to continue in my raised voice with "Well CONGRATULATIONS, I am UP NOW!!!"

6:32am I storm past a sheepish Patrick out of the bedroom and into the kitchen. I yank open the freezer to find a solitary waffle left in the Eggo box (Patrick's go-to breakfast), which I seize and stuff into the toaster. At this point I realize I'm not even remotely hungry (probably from the adrenaline still pumping through my angry veins), but dammit I needed something to do in a huff. And what better punishment than for him to watch me eat the last waffle?

We spent the rest of the next hour in silence, save a couple childish and needless comments from me, like "Oh there goes my alarm for when I SHOULD be waking up!" Patrick merely continued to wodlessly iron his clothes and allow me to stomp around until I got in the shower.
He came to kiss me goodbye as he left for work, and I begrudgingly obliged and wished him a good day at work. Harumph.

Lessons learned today:
1) Not really a new lesson, but I am NOT a morning person. I had a similar reaction a couple weeks ago when I was awakened by cat claws IN my buttcheek after Patrick allowed playtime to get too close to the bed. Apparently, however, he decided he still needed a hefty reminder that I lack any amount of early bird disposition.

2) Soccer balls should be kept in either closets or car trunks. Clearly storing them out in the open is too great a temptation for kicking at innocent targets.

3) BOYS. ARE. DUMB. I can think of no better explanation for kicking a ball at a sleeping BEAR - let alone in the HOUSE, which moms have been preaching against since the invention of balls.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

We Women are Weird: Acting [but not Thinking] Our Age

So it is a known fact that men don't understand women, and women don't get men.
My simple explanation is that guys are just stupid and girls are just crazy - and some would argue that women are crazy because men are stupid... but I won't. Because I know better.

Crazy - maybe. Weird? Oh yes. We all have our own brand of course, but some things hold true across the board. For our purposes, I'll speak of the weirdness of being in your 20s, among other things.

And because I've used the word several times already, I'm just gonna throw this out there: I don't consider myself a "woman". At the risk of sounding like Britney, I'm obviously waaaay past the prime of referring to myself as a girl, but "woman" just sounds so... matronly?

Basically by all definitions, I am considered by society to be a woman. I'm female and a legal adult, I'm a college graduate, have had a full-time job for 4+ years, I pay my own bills, I literally OWN the title for my car, I live with my boyfriend, I cook dinner and sometimes even use a crockpot for crying out loud! I have all the credentials, believe-you-me.

What I lack however, is the mindset. In my head, I still believe I see everything as if I were a 15 year old girl! It's like I'm going through the motions of adulthood (obtaining an income, paying bills), but I don't think anyone else should be buying it. Heck, I don't buy it! It's like I'm in a giant game of chicken with the universe, and I'll just keep pretending until it gives up and says "OK, good job, but now you can move back in with your parents and go on family trips to Disney for free and have summer and holidays off every year and never have to cook dinner again! Oh and surprise - your teenage metabolism is back! Enjoy wearing pants in the single digit sizes again!!"
Sadly, this hasn't happened yet.

In the meantime, I'll continue through my "adult" life playing the part of a mature and respectable member of society. I will also continue to painstakingly mull over my daily outfits as if they utterly define who I am. I'll continue to stress about feeling accepted by co-workers/boyfriend's friends/any new group of people. I'll eat ice cream for breakfast some Saturdays just because I can. I'll size up pretty much every female I meet by determining in what way she's prettier than me. And most importantly - I will cry over the silliest things as if they were the end of the world.

And this is one issue I know I'm not alone in. I've had multiple discussions with friends about it, and my best friend Lindsey even mentions it in her own blog. She touches on what might be the craziest part of this whole concept: not only does it apply to my 20-something peers... but to generations before us as well?
Were our mothers in the same mental state of confusion/age crisis when they were having kids and raising us?? I mean, I know nothing of parenting styles, baby food, and toddler fashion vs. function. Why didn't they have classes for these things in college? Maybe they did when our moms were our age?

They just always seemed to have it so together back in the day - and obviously I was lucky to not have had parents with more blatant isssues - but is it possible they were really just sort of flying by the seats of their pants too?

The mind, it boggles.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Musings: Superpowers and Shampooing thoughts

Something I know I would like to feature regularly on this blog is a regular outflow of some of my most random thoughts. At first I thought "Oh! I'll do something cute like call it 'Monday Musings'!"... but then I realized you can't predict when a particularly noteworthy train of thought will strike you - and who wants to wait around for up to SIX DAYS to blog about it?? Not this lady, that's for sure. As these thoughts strike me, they will be dwelt upon ASAP.

And I might as well prepare you - they can be exceedingly strange.

So today will be my first musings post (please note that it's a Wednesday).

Typically these odd trains of thought take place in one of two places for me: in the shower, or driving to/from work. I'm alone, doing a bit of a mindless task [saaaafely of course] and in need of some mental stimulation. My high school friends and I coined a phrase for this phenomenon, as we often came up with our best ideas and epiphanies in the shower. We would hurry to school and start a conversation saying "This morning I had the BEST shampooing thought!", which was always an indication that we were about to hear pure obsessive-gossipy-girl gold.

In any case, this morning it happened to be on my way to work. I'm not sure what sparked this, but I often don't know. I started thinking about if I/people I knew were to develop super powers, what would they be? I mean, it would make some sort of sense that to actually develop without some sort of outside source (i.e. Spiderman's spide bite) that a superpower would evolve from an existing special talent or particular personality trait. For example, a comedian that is exceptionally good at impressions might become a shape-shifter!

[Interjection: yes, I honestly do sit and ponder things like this unprovoked in my car.]

So I thought about my friends. My dear friend Madeline is so sweet-natured and has an infectious attitude, I imagine her superpower would be the ability to alter the moods of people around her. Katelyn loves earth/dirt/things growing, so she would be able to control plants. Lindsey is fashion-conscious and super trendy, so she could alter her appearance at will. Krysta is really funny and a great story teller, so her power would be to fully engross and captivate any person within earshot. My cousin Cora inherited our grandmother's inability to NOT cry at any mildly sentimental moment or parting of ways, so I think she would have the ability to create floodwaters in a matter of minutes (from her eyes) and control the water. And the list goes on!

I thought for a while about what my superpower would be, and it's tough. I have some odd talents and quirks. For one, I can hydrate all day long and still only pee like 2, maybe 3 times. Total. From the moment I get up until I go to sleep. I'm like a camel! But what kind of superpower would that be? Turning into a camel would be pretty... lame? Unless I lived in the Sahara. Which I don't. So I'm still working on my own, and am open to suggestions.

Another topic, briefly:

Now I am definitely a huge pet lover, and as previously discussed I am borderline obsessed with my cat. But do you ever stop and think about pets as extremely WEIRD? I mean, I have this tiny beast I keep in my home at all times. Even when I'm at work, or asleep. He sheds his fur anywhere and everywhere he goes. This furry four-legged guy is just walking around my house doing as he pleases. Except he's not a GUY, he is an animal that cannot speak, doesn't have deep thoughts (like weighing the pros and cons of playing with plastic bags at 3am when everyone else is asleep - though history should tell him that he will likely be yelled at with a slight risk of having a pillow-missile launched at him), and therefore can't ever truly relate to me.

But I love him, and I suspect he loves me (slight chance he fakes it for food).

Whoever decided pets were normal and even an expected part of life... they were both totally crazy, and completely a genius. (And I'd wager they liked furry snuggling, too.)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Getting acquainted with my new friend!

Hi! I'd like you to meet my new friend: the Sony Alpha a33 DSLR camera.

We've only known each other for about a week, but we're becoming fast friends. I took ol' Alfie (as I'll call him) with me on several adventures this past weekend!

First, we went to Orlando (actually, Champion's Gate, FL - but so few people are aware of such a place) for some best friends and poolside time. Alfie was perfect for documenting this joyous reunion.

That's actual, unexaggerated emotion there folks!

Then on Sunday we were invited to a 5th Birthday Party for a family friend. I was commissioned to photograph the games and playtime for the afternoon, (I know I know, ridiculously early in my foray as a photographer to be getting assignments - but these things happen when you run around bragging about your new equipment).

I was able to grab at least a handful of gems.

Birthday girl cheering for her team during relay races

Cousin of the birthday girl, recently became a big fan of walking

Little sister taking sweet sweet relish in every last bite of cupcake

Mental note: American Girl apparently makes shockingly amazing birthday presents

Lastly, on Sunday night I went to task on making some DEEEElicious Oreo Cupcakes (recipe courtesy of Bakerella) to bring to the office to celebrate our August birthdays. What can I say - I'm part baking addict, part suck-up.

Another perfect bonding opportunity for Alfie and me.

Unfortunately, I was so exhausted after the cupcakes were through (and mildly sticky up to my elbows, AND suffering from an oven-door burn on my forearm) that I did not get pictures of the finished product. I will say that they looked quite similar to the photos in the Bakerella link, only slightly less pretty. But what they lacked in beauty they more than made up for in YUMMM!

Friday, August 12, 2011

And so it begins...

After some considerable outside pressure to begin a blog of my own... here goes!

I decided today was as good a day to start as any, but mostly because I just got a brand spankin' new DSLR camera - and lack of a "proper" camera had been a primary excuse for my procrastination in entering the blogosphere.

So as I'm experimenting with my new camera, I'll be giving blogging a whirl as well!
Now to figure out how to post pictures in my blog... please st
and by!

My first picture with the new camera!
I like to think they only get better as I experimented with settings.
This little guy hung out on our porch railing for a few days while some major storms rolled through town. I managed
to document his retreat down from the balcony, after over 24 hours of immobility.

See! Marked improvement already!

Farewell my amphibious friend!

And I should be honest from the beginning: anyone who follows my blog is going to be seeing a lot of pictures of my cat, Hermes.
I've had him since he was a 3 month old kitten, and he turns 4 years old next month! He's lived in 4 different apartments/houses with me, 2 states, made three 7+hour car rides, and been with me through a multitude of life's ups and downs.

Plus he is one HANDSOME little devil!!

Until next time...