Monday, June 28, 2010

Animal Collective

Today is a monumental day.

Today, a year after being introduced to them, I got reacquainted with the band Animal Collective.
If you've never listened to them, they're incredible. I've spent all day with their album, Merriweather Post Pavillion, on repeat (my apologies to anyone who may have said 'hi' to me on campus and I didn't respond. Now you know why). I'd say they're like a cross between the Beatles and MGMT, with a little bit of Beach Boys. I don't think I've liked an album this much since Spice Up Your Life.

Anyways, if you haven't heard them, check them out.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

My Queue

I just got Netflix. This was a huge mistake. Goodbye GPA.

Friday, June 25, 2010


It's currently 5:52 AM, and I've been up for about an hour baking stuff for later today. I should've been done by now, except in my 5 AM-edness I made a double batch of cake mix instead of cake-mix cookies, which means the time it'll take to finish these just about tripled. I should be really annoyed right now, and I think I almost was. I was standing above the cake mix after realizing what I had done, and I remember going through the thought process in my head, trying to make myself feel annoyed (as I rightfully should have been), but I couldn't do it. I almost became annoyed at the fact that I couldn't become annoyed.

It's because of a word that I've become obsessed with: quixotic.

I heard the word for the first time in a Debate/Forensics competition I was competing in in my junior year. A duo got up and began the introduction to their piece with the word, 'quixotic,' which they described (in so many words) as having hope even when facing insurmountable odds, after which they began performing a scene from 'Angels in America' and I tuned out. I've liked the word ever since, mostly for its phonetics, actually. I like the way it sounds, and the imagery that comes to mind every time I say it or think about it.

The word itself stems from Don Quixote. "Quixotic" refers to anything Don Quixote-like (i.e chivalry, idealism, foolishness, etc). The formal definition is:

"Quixotism is impracticality in pursuit of ideals, especially those ideals manifested by rash, lofty and romantic ideas or extravagantly chivalrous action. It also serves to describe an idealism without regard to practicality. An impulsive person or act might be regarded as quixotic."

Why I've latched on to this particular word, I don't know, but it's become sort of a motto for myself. I've had it written on my arm almost all semester, as a sort of 'memo' tattoo. I think the definition sort of encompasses how I feel about life. I like the idea of being hopeful or idealistic to an impractical degree. I think everyone needs that. What's the point of being completely rational 100% of the time? Especially someone my age. I'd much rather go through this phase of my life 'pursuing rash, lofty, romantic ideals' than relegating myself to a lifetime of rationality and logic. This isn't to say that I run around in a gypsy costume telling everyone to chill out and go with the flow. Actually, I like to consider myself a very rational person. But, beneath all of my rationality, I'm an idealist. I sometimes don't like to admit it, especially around the jaded Political Science crowd, but I'm roughly 4 years old in terms of how I see the world. There is no obstacle that can't be overcome or turned into a positive experience. I've seen people overcome seemingly insurmountable odds by working hard and being positive. There are so many great stories about people that survive terrible ordeals and come out on top. Why do we ever doubt that that could (and will) be us too?

Annnd I feel like I'm rambling, so I'm gonna end before I start sounding too much like a hippie, and go frost some (annoying) cupcakes.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

In "Like"

It's been an exceptionally good week.
Here's some stuff that's made it, you know, exceptionally good....

1. Being an English major. I love it. I love having an excuse to write and read. I also like not being a Political Science major anymore, although it was fun while it lasted. I thought I'd have an identity crisis when I switched, but it's been one of the best decisions I've ever made. Scholastically, at least.

2. "Walls" by Beck. I found the song again after a year of not having it on my iPod. I don't know how I've lived without it. I've had it on repeat for about a day now. Also included under this is Beck's entire musical catalogue. The man is a genius.

3. Running around Rexburg. The weather is perfect and the sky is so much clearer than in Virginia. Running around here at night, especially in the Summer, is really therapeutic.

4. The World Cup. I don't think I need to elaborate on that one...

5. My Mac. After 3 years with my Dell (RIP) it's nice not to have to wait 5 minutes for my computer to boot up. I sort of felt like a sell-out when I first bought it, but it's my new best friend.

6. Good books. There are so many I want to read. This 7 week break is going to be stupid with reading.

7. Online shopping. I never shop online, but this past week I bought an old Rugby shirt and now I'm perma-excited for it to show up.

8. Baking. I got my family's cookie recipe a couple weeks ago, and I haven't looked back since. I've also been named the official baker of the David O. McKay Reading Center.

9. Summer. I never used to be one of those people that loved Summer. I actually prefer Fall. But, this Summer's been pretty tight so far. I love my classes, my job, my friends, the weather, all of it. Plus I get to hang out with the family all over the West coast and go to Europe in August. I really couldn't ask for more.

10. Fall semester. I decided to stay in Rexburg instead of going to LA for the internship because of some money/timing issues, and I'm feeling pretty good about it. It's gonna be a riot. A real scream!

I'll leave it at 10 for now. There's plenty more where that came from.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Writing. Creatively

So it's been a while since I posted anything new.

I stared a creative writing class Monday.

We write a lot.


5 Minute Write...

Running is my favorite enemy. We have a love and hate relationship that I can’t live with or without. It’s a relationship ultimately dominated by one word: hate.

This hate hits me in stages as I run, increasing and decreasing in intensity and focus. Beginning the run, I hate how tense every muscle is. No amount of stretching or warming up can prepare them for the pavement they’ll have to absorb. Each muscle in my legs and hips and stomach feels like an un-oiled joint at the crux of a large, out-dated, bulky machine. I can feel the individual fibers straining to catch up, reluctantly contracting and loosening with each stride. My mind looks for things to distract me from the awkwardness of the first steps, but all it can come up with is more hate.

I hate the Sun, the rays that relentlessly seep through my heather-gray shirt. I hate the drag of my sweatpants against the humid breeze. I hate the rhythm of my ponytail penduluming against the back of my head, always one beat behind my steps. I hate my sweat-soaked clothing, how it suctions to my back and arms and hangs heavily everywhere else. I hate that I keep picturing my red, blood-infused face in my head, and the slight bounce of my cheeks as I run. I hate the sweat that slithers through my eyebrows and pools threateningly on the edge of my eyelashes. I hate the rock that ends up in the arch of my right shoe, stabbing my already tender feet. I hate that my music won’t go any louder, or drown out the constancy of the hate.

By the end of my run, I hate that I can’t run any longer. I miss synchronizing my steps with the beat of each song. I miss feeling my heart pound blood into the rest of my body, being able to feel the strength of my pulse in my neck and my fingers and my feet. I miss the predictability of each step on the track. I miss forcing myself to forget about everything else going on in my life to concentrate on the track ahead of me. I miss the synthesis of each muscle and nerve and bone and cell orchestrating the rhythm pushing my body forward. I miss the war between my body and my mind, and that sense of victory knowing that both have won.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Sew Clee-shayed

So as part of my job as a tutor for BYU- I, I get to do online tutoring. Basically what happens is college students from all over the country e-mail us weekly grammar exercises and essays, and we correct/critique them and send them back. It's pretty much the best job on campus, if not the world. In one semester I've been blessed to read an essay about child leashes (which had one paragraph dedicated to a hypothetical situation in which an adult, talking to another adult, forgets that what's on the end of the leash in their hands is an actual child, tugs on the leash to shut them up, and pulls the child to the ground, giving them a concussion), another essay about how we should all go back to the days of Mid-wifery (which was another tutor's student), and a grammar worksheet which hailed peanut butter and jelly sandwiches as the most important invention of the 21st century (and you better believe this child was serious about it). One of my favorite assignments, though, was this one, where the student had to watch an hour of TV, or listen to an hour of radio, pick out all the cliches they heard, and modernize them to make them 'un-cliched.' So here it is, with a few notes (that I didn't send to this student)....

· Bad guys will always get killed by a snake, while the hero simply reaches out and picks it up with his bare hands. (VALID)

· Aliens usually speak English and have same colloquialisms. i.e. planet. (I DIDN'T KNOW 'PLANET' WAS A COLLOQUIALISM.)

- At least one of a pair of identical twins is born evil (CASE IN POINT: TWINS- STARRING DANNY DEVITO ND ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER.)

- Movie people can get cabs instantly, unless they are in danger, whereupon no cab can be found.


·If hero or villain takes an elevator, villain or hero can beat it by taking the stairs, even if the trip is 20 floors.

·Pastries are always in pink boxes (OR WHITE)


·Police Captain/lieutenants are always angry at their star detective and yell at him, threatening suspension if he doesn't drop the case. (THIS ONE, I LIKE)


·Whenever anyone is chased into a staircase, she/he will run upstairs rather than down. (HOW ELSE ARE YOU GOING TO GET TO THE ROOFTOP FOR THE 'EDGE OF THE ROOFTOP' CONFRONTATION...GEEZ.)

Anyways, I thought it was amusing. Kudos to you, fellow movie analyst. Ku-DOS


So within hours of that last post, the crap really hit the fan, not necessarily in a bad way... if, in fact, crap can hit a fan in a non-bad way.

I'll give the short version. I was talking online with an old friend who I used to date back in the day, and he told me that the real reason that our 'relationship' ended was because I scared him, or rather the feelings he had for me scared him. This came as somewhat of a shock, mainly because I'd resigned myself to believing other reasons for the relationship ending. The other reason, though, is that that was the first time I'd ever had someone tell me anything like that before. Usually when I'm in some sort of relationship with someone, I sort of just assume they 'like' me, nothing more. Thinking that there's anything more intense than 'like' weirds me out. It sounds strange, but thinking that someone could 'love' me is very odd. I don't mean that in a 'Poor me. I'm unlovable' kind of way, but thinking that I could inspire those kinds of feelings in someone makes me very uncomfortable. I have a really hard time thinking of myself as that kind of girl. It's so bizarre writing this, and reading it, and knowing how little it makes sense.

I should also clarify that 'the guy' isn't a creep or anything. The comment just took me by surprise, and then started a ripple effect which wouldn't stop.

A few hours after this particular conversation, I got some news from home that was a little less than positive. It was nothing too serious, but I would call it 'disappointing.' Hearing the news, I gauged how I thought I should have felt, or how I thought anybody else would have felt, and then how I actually felt, and there was a pretty big disparity between the two. I realized how numb I've become to bad news. Maybe 'numb' isn't the right word, but it's as close as I'll be to come to it. I'm beginning to think that the 'numbness' has a connection to how hesitant I am in accepting affection. I automatically downplay things in my mind to make them seem less extreme, to include bad news, feelings, stress, etc.

I'm really starting to sound like a weirdo right about now.

I guess the point of this entry is that I have a lot of walls up that I need to take down. At the same time, though, those walls have helped me survive a lot of really tough crap, and I'm really hesitant to take them down. I wish there was an equation for just how much of the wall I should leave intact, so that I could avoid most of the 'hurt' but still let some good stuff in once in a while.

And there is is. Binged. Purged. It's all out. Finally.

And I'm spent.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

"Do we always have to listen to this elevator music?"

"Do we always have to listen to this elevator music?"

The quote's from American Beauty, a genius of a movie about the pitfalls of suburbia. It refers to the music the mother, played ever so brilliantly by Annette Benning, insists on playing over dinner every night.

I've been asking myself this same question ever since I heard the quote. Except, my elevator music isn't elevator music at all. My elevator music is mind games, mind games specific to behavior around guys.

A while back, I had a conversation with someone I used to date. I'd liked him for a while before the actual dating started, and I thought I was more than obvious about it. According to him, though, he thought I hated him. This isn't the first time I've heard this. I've heard similar things from everyone from my friends to other guys I've liked. Even my junior year English teacher who, to this day, is my hero, told me that I was "always hard to read," and that she could never tell whether I liked the class or not.

I've never been your classic flirt. I hate feeling like I'm transparent like that unless I'm positive that a guy likes me back. I don't know whether it's a weakness or a strength, or what to think about it, exactly. All I know is that the elevator music has to stop eventually.

And that's all I got.