Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I've been feeling for a couple of days like it's time for me to reflect on the past year and examine what I did and what I didn't do and all of that stuff and kind of take stock. These things happen as you get older.

In the past year, I think I wrote one new song. I didn't play out very much, nor was I in any theatrical productions. I understudied one show, but didn't get to perform. I took a lot of classes, though, and I think I grew a lot as an artist thanks to those classes. I also met and worked with a bunch of people there who I love dearly and hope to work with again in the future.

In the past year, I think I kissed three boys (not counting kisses in my acting class because those don't really count - it's acting class). One of them decided the next day that he would rather not make out with me ever again and seeing as this was the third time he played my emotions like that, I've decided not to talk to him anymore. I don't think he has noticed. Another one was, I think, just a case of bad timing. Good guy, but I don't see it going anywhere, unfortunately. Not now, anyway. The third was just plain silly. The kind of funny thing about this bit is that I went to the doctor yesterday for my annual exam and she asked if I had any "concerns" and I had to laugh, largely at what would be required to make me concerned. Divine intervention or something. Anyway. Sad times on the boy front this year.

In the past year, I went to the emergency room and decided that I never want to have to go to the emergency room again. And I also found out that I don't have tumors on my knees like the one on my head. For whatever that's worth.

In the past year, I fell in love with my brand new niece. She'll be one on Friday and is just about the most amazing thing I have ever seen in my life. I wish I got to spend more time with her, but she's going to be around for a while. I can't wait to see her grow up!

In the past year, I worked really hard and finally, finally, finally got about a half-an-ounce of recognition for it. I realize that a lot of people work really hard, but if one's supervisors just say "Thank you" or "Nice job" every now and again to recognize that, it goes a long way. I got a "nice job."

In the past year, I set a plan in motion to begin the next chapter of my life. A lot of you know about it already, and full details are coming, but suffice it to say I'm excited and terrified all at the same time, but I know it's the right thing to do. It feels good to be on this path.

In the past year, I got an iPhone and I love it.

In the past year, I hung out with family and friends. I spent time being a pillow for my cat. I listened to my best friend when she really needed me to. I helped people whenever I could. I became a fan of Scrabble-type games, and I started to learn about futbol.

In the past year, I fell in love with Doctor Who.

The past year was hard for me in a lot of ways. I spent a lot of it being very unhappy. I think some of that is still hanging around because I'm grumpy today. But I know that changes are coming and that's a good thing. My doctor told me I should try to lose about five pounds. In the coming year, I'm going to try to lose five pounds of worry and fear and anger. At least five.

So here's to a brand new year for me. And here's hoping it is happier than the last one. For all of you, too.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

So I'm kind of amazed at how easily I can get sucked into sporting events. Maybe I really am a competitive person by nature, or maybe I just like to watch people do things that I don't do, or maybe I was a sports star in a past life, but I find it really easy to get into sporting events. For example, the World Cup. I know virtually nothing about futbol. I sucked at it when we played in gym class - I've always been more of a baseball/softball player. But there is all this super crazy fun happening around the World Cup and I have to say, it is exciting. I went online and read some of the Laws of the Game so I have a bit of a clue now, and now I'm waking up in the morning thinking about who's playing what matches today and who I'd like to cheer for. I'm looking at group standings trying to determine if anyone has been mathematically eliminated or guaranteed a spot in the knock-out stage yet. And I'm trying my best to pay attention to the games as they happen (online updates, that kind of thing) so I can start to get a feel for the game and I have to say, it's exciting. Yes, it is a low-scoring sport, but that doesn't mean there isn't action. And yes, some of the players are whiny drama queens who trip over their own feet and try to blame it on an opponent who was passing by at the time, but still. It's fun.

And when the US won today in stoppage time, well, that was a pretty incredible moment. I am annoyed with the US for having two goals taken away for having a player offsides (seriously, do you not know where you are on the field? And where your opponents are? How can you be that oblivious? I realize spacial relationships are not American strong points, as is evidenced by people stopping in doorways or at the bottom of stairs when there are hundreds of people behind them or people altering their walking paths so that they bump into me on the sidewalk (though that one may be partially due to the gravitational field generated by my rear end), but still. You'd think that practicing futbol however many hundreds of hours would make you aware of where your teammates are at any given time and where your opponents are at any given time. I'm just saying.), and it looked like all was lost, but then bam! With three minutes remaining in stoppage time, score! And with that score, we advance. Without that score, we go home. It's exciting. I'm sorry, but it is.

Anyway. I'm enjoying the World Cup. Particularly since the Cubs are sucking the life out of north side baseball right now. I gotta have somebody to cheer for, right?

(I still love the Cubs, they're just hurting my heart right now.)

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

So I'm almost wishing I knew more about futbol. Yes, I meant to say futbol. I mean to distinguish it from American Football, which my friend and I contend should be named Tackleball, as they spend WAY more time tackling one another than they spend doing anything with their feet (besides walking around and stuff, but a lot of sports use feet in that respect, so I'm not counting that). By futbol, I mean the sport that the rest of the world calls football, but we here in the US call soccer. Which I'm sure confuses small children when they find out that the world soccer organization's acronym is FIFA and contains no "s" for "soccer." Anyway. That was sort of long and rambling.

I'm almost wishing I knew more about futbol because the World Cup is happening right now in South Africa and I keep seeing all these news article updates about this team upsetting that team and these people getting arrested for wearing that and this guy was so excited he took his shirt off in celebration (which is always what I do when I'm happy) and they got really pissed at him for doing it and that guy scored a goal that left this guy bleeding from the head and in general, the whole thing looks to be a boatload of super crazy fun. It amuses me almost to no end that if you get the live online updates of a game, it tells you if goal kicks and penalty kicks were made right-footed or left-footed. And some of the pictures they show of so-and-so's face as his team scored in extra time (which some people think shouldn't count) to get his country's first ever World Cup goal are just priceless. The absolute jubilation is infectious.

My brother's friend explained to me kind of how it works, with the groups and points and all of that stuff. In a weird way, it makes more sense and seems more fair than March Madness, though I don't know if the groups are selected arbitrarily or what. Anyway. It sounds like super crazy good fun times and I kind of wish I knew enough about the sport to speak intelligently about it. As it stands, I'll just have to cheer for countries that I like, whether their clubs have any history of doing well at the Cup or not. And/or I'm going to cheer for anyone who upsets a heavy favorite because that just makes it all so much more dramatic.

Yay futbol!

Monday, June 07, 2010

A lot of people have a lot of things to celebrate. In the past four or five years, I have been to wedding showers, baby showers, weddings, engagement parties, bachelorette parties, birthday parties, anniversary parties, "I'm leaving town" parties, "I'm back in town" parties, Fourth of July parties, Memorial Day parties, Labor Day parties, New Year's Eve parties, Halloween parties, Christmas and Hanukkah parties, a Passover seder, beer pong tournaments, random "let's drink 'cuz it's hot/cold/pretty/icky outside" parties, housewarming parties, "I felt like having people over because I never have people over" parties, "I'm finally single again" parties, and at least two "proms." That's a lot of celebrating. As humans, I think we like to celebrate. We're always looking for a reason to spread around the good fortune.

And we all know I have a thing about holidays. I don't believe in making them week-long or month-long ordeals. I think St. Patrick's Day should be celebrated on March 17th. I think Flag Day should be observed on June 14th. Granted, I don't get too upset when Labor Day and Labor Day (Observed) don't match up because that one still gets me a Monday off of work, so I can get behind that. But I'm all about celebrating things on the day they are supposed to be celebrated.

Thing is, I haven't celebrated Me in a long time. A friend of mine threw me an awesome blow-out birthday party about eight years ago and since then, it's all been rather low key. I threw a closing night party for a show I was in. My birthdays have been a handful of friends meeting for drinks or dinner or something. I don't have any relationship anniversaries to celebrate. I'm not a mother or father, so I can't get in on those days. I'm not a veteran, so there's two more I don't qualify for. I don't have a kid, so no baby showers or kid's first birthdays or anything. I'm not really an administrative assistant anymore, but even if I was, my company doesn't pay attention to those kinds of things. I haven't survived some dread disease, so I don't have the anniversary of a surgery or anything to celebrate. I haven't won any awards or sweepstakes contests or anything. And I have just a one bedroom apartment with no outdoor space, so the big summer holidays really shouldn't happen at my house. Nor the big winter holidays for that matter. And in my family, we're all scaling back on the big winter holidays anyway. Birthdays have been no big deal in my family for years - it's usually phone calls and maybe a card.

Which is all fine and totally understandable. But I have a lot going on in my life right now that needs to be celebrated. NEEDS to be celebrated. I know I haven't told you about all of it yet, but I'm guessing you already know because the four friends I told about it seem to have each told four friends who told four friends and so on and so on and so on so word has gotten around, but I didn't get the joy of telling some people and seeing the looks on their faces. And when I do finally get to make my big reveal, it's not going to be news anymore and nobody is going to want to celebrate with me. Which sucks. I'm sorry, but it sucks.

I'm going to sound like a three-year-old having a tantrum right now and I apologize in advance for that, but I kind of need to.

I would like to be celebrated. For one day. I would like one day that is full of people saying nice things to me and treating me nicely. I would like one day that isn't hush-hush clinking of glasses under the table with one friend at a time kind of celebrating. I would like, for one day, to be a big deal to everyone I know.

I don't mean to negate the hush-hush clinking of glasses under the table with one friend at a time - some of my fondest memories include celebrating something or another with just one or two friends. And my mother celebrates me all of the time and I love her for that (and many other reasons). But for the past couple of years, I've been feeling a bit lost in the shuffle, or glazed over in larger situations and larger settings. Maybe it is because I used to be a "name" in the swing scene and people used to get excited when they knew I was coming to town and now most people barely know who I am, but I miss the occasional fussing over. I don't want anything crazy. But I know, if I had a significant other in my life, he would buy me something pretty, or make me breakfast in bed, or take me out somewhere special for dinner and just for one day, make a wee bit of a fuss over me. Let me know I am appreciated.

I feel like I work really hard. I feel like (most of the time, anyway) I'm a nice person and a good person. I feel like every now and again, it would be nice to hear people say that.

Thing is, I have plans to go to a charity fundraiser on my birthday this year. I've gone every year for the last three or four, and it is always the weekend right around my birthday and it is supporting a cause that is very important to my best guy friend and his family, so therefore it is supporting a cause that is very important to me. I wouldn't miss it unless it was an emergency. And on the up side, I will get to dress up fancy and go out with my friends on my birthday, but it won't be about me. It shouldn't be about me. This cause is bigger and more important than me and that's a good thing. But it means that the one day each year on which I feel like I have a right to ask people to make a wee bit of a fuss over me, I've been trumped. And I have to wait until next year. Or find another day to ask people to fuss over me, which feels kind of false (see above paragraph on celebrating holidays on the appropriate day). And/or it feels like people have a perfectly legitimate reason to prioritize other things over me if I ask them to celebrate me on a day that isn't actually my birthday. The weekend before my birthday, a bunch of my friends are out of town. The weekend after is the Fourth of July, which kind of trumps everything else. You go too much farther out than that and it's no longer a birthday party, it's a random "hey, let's all hang out" thing.

Anyway. I don't know. I will be doing something later in the summer, for other reasons. And one of these years I'll get to celebrate Me again. And I'm sorry I sound like a petulant child, I just needed to bitch for a minute.

Friday, June 04, 2010

Call me crazy, but I would think that if an employee keeps messing up, and the errors keep growing in severity, I would think that said employee's supervisor should take said employee aside and say, "Hey. Shape up," or something to that effect.

Call me crazy.