Saturday, March 10, 2012


I found my iPod charger.

I swear, I never charge my iPod. It's a shuffle and I plug it in once in a while to switch songs around or to put some podcasts on in yet another failed attempt to be educated and seem well-read. That's the only time it gets power, but I guess that's enough. I only use it when I run, which is about once a week these days (because I only run on weekends because I don't like to run in the dark and I live in Denmark which means it's dark by the time I get home from work during the week), and when I'm on an airplane, which in my life is frequently but it's been a good 3 weeks at least since I've ridden one.

Last weekend I attempted to go running but I wasn't really feeling it and my iPod died after about 15 mins so I called it a day and went home and probably ate cookies or something. I couldn't find my charger and tore apart my room (i.e. my top dresser drawer and my backpack because the's the only two places I would have put it), still didn't find it, and forgot about it until today. In at attempt to be rational I thought back to when the last time I *saw* my charger was, and I decided it was when I went to Norway for a glorified ski trip masquerading as a research center symposium retreat (good times were had by all). I packed it in case I wanted to change the songs or add some podcasts for the airplane ride (I didn't, and didn't). Sure enough, it was in the side pocket of my backpack (not my "go to school" backpack which is where I looked the first time, but my "I'm going to go backpack Europe" backpack which is what I generally bring when I travel because it holds a lot and is comfortable, despite the fact that it makes me look like a "backpacker" which is a group of people I generally despise, despite being one on occasion).

I don't see why you would possibly care about this. *I* don't even care about this (well apparently I care enough to write 2 paragraphs, but now that they are done I don't even care enough to proofread them*). I can't even remember why I started writing this except maybe to tell everyone that I asked if they had a charger for an iPod shuffle that I could borrow that I am no longer in need of their services. I would contact the individuals except I can't remember who and how many people I actually asked. It was probably like 3 because honestly I didn't put that much effort into it. Although I did draw this gem** for one of my friends when we were trying to figure out over email whether or not he had the same kind of iPod as I did:

Coming soon: The exciting story of how this technological wonder of a music player came to be in my possession (hint: I didn't buy it).

*Just as I finished that sentence I noticed that I wrote "possible" instead of "possibly" and I fixed it.
**Yes, I realize it took more time to draw that than it would have taken to Google "iPod shuffle" and send him the first link that came up in the image results...

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Wake me up when February ends

February was (is always) a rough month. First of all, it's hard to spell. I usually take the easy way out and write "Feb." because after that I'm never sure where the u's and r's go. I have been known to reschedule things in order to get out of spelling that word. "How about the 27th of Feburary... Febyouwary... Februray... uh, March 1st it is!"

Also, Feb is cold. Cold and Dark. Especially if you live in one of the Northern countries, as I have the misfortune pleasure of experiencing this year. I'm pretty sure that during the month of Feb we saw the sun for a total of approximately 7 minutes. This is because even when it is technically "day" time in a Danish winter, it is almost always overcast. Almanacs will tell you that there are around 10* "rainy" (snowy) days in Feb in an average year in Denmark. Don't let that fool you. "Rainy" means that a certain number of centimeters (aww look at me being all European and not saying inches anymore!) of precipitation fell to the earth. They don't count those days where the entire day is shrouded in a heavy misty evil fog that, while it doesn't actually "fall" per se, will soak you as you walk through it and the suspended droplets stick to your clothing, trying to suck out your soul and leave you as a hollow shell of your former self.

While I love biking, ahem, I mean cycling**, biking during the month of Feb is not fun. It's like a little jar of misery wrapped in pain and suffering, and tied with a bow of hopelessness, that has been soaked through with the rains of apathy, and drug through the slush of despair.

The redeeming quality of Feb is that it hosts both Groundhog Day and Valentine's Day, which means flowers and endless Bill Murray quotes. These things I can get behind. However, they don't make up for the rest of this sad, miserable month. During Feb I get depressed and I just want to sleep all the time. I can go to bed at 9 pm and still have a hard time getting out of bed at 8 am. I'm not sure why this is but it might correlate to the lack of sunlight in my life. My snooze button gets more use in the month of Feb than the other 11 months of the year combined. On a given Feb morning I probably hit it an average of 7 times. I think, were it not for the fact that I'm an adult now and I have a job and responsibilities and bills to pay, I could easily sleep through the entire month of Feb. During Feb I consider the day a success if I make it to work before noon. I consider the weekends a great achievement if I actually leave my apartment at all. Showering becomes optional.

But, Feb is over. We can put all that behind us now. Water under the bridge. March has arrived bringing*** with it a light at the end of the tunnel. Also, a commonly-used and easy to spell beautiful verb of a month. March is exciting and energy-inducing. March makes me want to get up and go. March 4th is nothing less than a call to action. Nay, a demand.

As I usually do when a new month arrives, I wrote some "New Month's Resolutions" today. (Please ignore the fact that I wrote them during an Old Testament class instead of paying attention to the lesson because seriously, don't take this the wrong way, but it was pretty much the worst lesson ever and it was either that or lose my mind.) My resolutions for this month went something like:

1. Stop being a jerk

2-13: other boring stuff about going to bed on time and getting up on time and getting to work on time and working out more, etc etc etc

14: Seriously, stop being a jerk.
I hope I can do it!

Here's to an awesome March. Good luck getting over your Feb hangover.

*I pretty much just made this up...
**I got this link from my awesome snarky Greek friend. I give credit where credit is due.
***I always write "brining" when I try to type this word. My life would be a lot easier if brining were not in fact a real word because then it would be underlined or autocorrected. Also I would never feel pressured to marinate something in salt water to prove my worth as a chef.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Auto correct

I've noticed that when I'm chatting with someone online and I make a typo, I will automatically "correct" it--usually with the help of the *, even if the actual meaning is obvious. I'm not sure why this is. It seems like wasted effort. For example, I often mistype -ing endings as "inh". Anyone with half a brain knows what I mean, so why is it that I feel the need to "fix" it immediately.

Friend: [[says something sad]]
Me: sounds depressinh
Me: *depressing

WHY do I do that!? Do I really think my (highly educated and intelligent) friend is going to think I meant "depressinh"** and stop the conversation to google that word and figure out what it means because he is unfamiliar with it? Am I afraid that he will interpret it as a depressed hyperbolic sine function*** and try to figure out what I am talking about mathematically and how it relates to his situation? Am I so concerned that someone will think I don't know how to spell the word "depressing" that I have to fix it so they know that I really know how to write it? I don't know. But I continue to do it.

**ironically, when I wrote this word, I misspelled it "depressing". ha.
***ever since I wrote that I can't stop seeing the "sinh" at the end... the the point where I have to really concentrate to figure out what the word is supposed to be. Great.

Friday, February 24, 2012

When the noise stops

Sometime life is rough and sometimes there are things you don't want to deal with. So you don't deal with them. You fill your life up with noise instead... with so many people, and responsibilities, meetings, classes at the gym, deadlines, soccer practices, late nights at the office, long runs on a Sat morning... with so much commotion that you never have to slow down and face those things. Then, suddenly, for no reason, the noise stops, and it's just you. Just you and your dragons, and no distractions. And maybe you're holding a tiny sword, or maybe just a straw or a paperclip, and you're wondering how you're going to MacGyver your way out of this situation that you have been avoiding for so long. Thoughts that you were trying to keep unthought come creeping in, and you start feeling things you didn't want to feel and you realize that "avoiding" is not the same as "dealing with", and everything is just SO QUIET and you want the noise to start again so you can distract yourself. But it doesn't. So finally you suck it up and go to the Post Office.

Man, you would not believe how much I hate going to the Post Office.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

How to find true love

Stephanie and I are rockstars at giving dating advice. Sadly, most people don't really want to hear our advice so we mostly just talk about things we would tell people if anyone listened to us (that makes it sound like we gossip about specific people, which is not the case. What I mean is that we discuss the philosophy of dating and what works and doesn't work, etc). I wish she were here to help me write this post that will tell all of you everything you need to know in order to find true love. Since she isn't here, it will probably just tell you most of what you need to know.

Since the day of love aka Valentine's Day has now passed, I was thinking about all the dating advice I have heard over the years. When it comes right down to it, no one is really qualified to give such advice to others. There are a few reasons for this:

(1) Assuming you are dating with the goal of getting married, who do you listen to? Married people obviously were "successful", but especially if they got married rather quickly (I know a few people that married the first person they seriously dated), how much experience do they really have to draw on? Maybe they just got lucky. Unfortunately, married people generally LOVE to tell us single people what we should be doing in order to join the ranks of happily married couples like themselves.

(2) Unmarried people that have had many relationships clearly have a lot of experience, however if marriage is their goal, they are obviously doing something "wrong", so why would you want to listen to them if you're looking to get hitched?

(3) As Hitch would say, "There are no rules." I have heard SO MANY ridiculous dating "rules." Once in a while one of them sound like very sage advice, and then I see a person that completely disregards that rule and ends up happily engaged. Listen to me and listen good: There. Are. No. Rules. Well, possibly a few very very basic ones like decent personal hygiene and not killing your dates, but I won't get into those.

Back to the "rules". I mostly hear the advice given to girls on how to deal with guys, since I am a girl. I also have a sneaking suspicion that guys don't get quite as much advice on how to deal with girls. I could be wrong. I have been told things like "You can only text him once for every 3 times he texts you" (presumably so you won't come across as desperate or something), "If he calls and want to do something at the last minute, say you're not available and try to make plans for an evening a few days in the future" (presumably so you don't turn into a booty call, and so you force him to be more committal), and "Don't walk across the room to talk to a guy, make him come to you" (presumably so... you can be the prey instead of the predator? I don't know...). There are so many more, but I won't bore you too much. I think you get the idea, and I'm sure you have heard plenty as well.

I have a few issues with all of these rules. First, it feels so much like rules of combat. Don't let him know how much you like him because if he thinks you like him more than he likes you, he will have the upper hand. Make him work for it. Pretend you are more busy than you really are. Act disinterested when you're really interested. You are being pitted against your possible future romantic partner in some crazy game where no one quite understands the rules or the goal. What should be a relationship of love, trust, friendship, and affection, becomes this competition where you are always trying to second-guess and outplay the other person. I fail to see how anything good can come of this. Do you really want to build a relationship on a foundation of playing games with each other? (If you do then fine, have at it, but I don't.) Unfortunately, there are times I find myself playing the games as well, out of sheer habit or societal pressure or perhaps something else.

Second, I don't like feeling insecure. More than that, I don't like making other people feel insecure. And by that I mean insecure about how I really feel about them. Life is hard enough. Dating is hard enough. Relationships are hard to figure out, hard to get into, hard to get out of. We're all in this together--can't we realize that everyone else struggles just as much as we do, and help each other out. Do we really need to add one more thing on top of work, school (for some people), family, paying bills, getting enough sleep, exercise, and eating right, and everything else that is a potential cause of stress in our lives? I, for one, would like to pretend I'm on the same team as whatever guy I'm seeing.

One of my friends once said "Yeah, but feelings get involved, and then things get messy." He has a point. It's hard when you love someone that only likes you as a friend. It's hard when someone loves you and you don't/can't reciprocate. I've been on both sides of the equation, so at least I have the benefit of knowing to some degree what it's like to be in the other person's shoes. I would hope that makes me a little bit more empathetic, and/or a little less annoying, as the case may be.

The problem with dating, especially if your ultimate goal is marriage, is that in a way it's the most selfish endeavor one engages in. You can't be "nice" to someone and marry them even if you don't really like them all that much, just to make them happy. You have to think about you. If you are considering spending the rest of your life with a person, it has to be THE person. Unfortunately, this means you will likely have to break hearts (unless you are my brother and your first girlfriend happens to be the perfect girl for you and you marry her and live happily ever after). You will likely get your heart broken. There's no way around it. (Just try not to be a jerk about it, okay? No matter what side of the heart-breaking equation you are on.)

As the famous Sunscreen song reminds us, "Don't be reckless with other people's hearts. Don't put up with people who are reckless with yours." I have a harder time with the second part, I think. I like to see the good in people. Especially people that I care about. I give people the benefit of a doubt--when their behavior could be interpreted in different ways, I tend to pick the interpretation that puts them in the most positive light. e.g. He said he would call me at 6pm and he didn't. His phone probably died. ... We planned to go out on Friday night and he never showed up. Maybe he was taking his sister to the hospital. [[Interestingly enough, I once stood up a guy I was supposed to watch a movie with because I had to take my roommate to the hospital. It happens, people!]] Unfortunately this can sometimes escalate to looked like I saw him kissing another girl. Maybe she got something in her eye and he was trying to help get it out...? ._. There is a fine line, I suppose.

I don't like to think that someone would deliberately want to hurt me or use me. For most people, this is true. For a few, not so much. While I realize this positive, happy, perhaps slightly naive, puppies-and-rainbows approach to life and dating might not be the most effective, and might set me up for being hurt sometimes, it's the approach I want. I want people to be honest and sincere. I want them to dislike playing games as much as I do. I want them to be happy when they feel happy, confused when they feel confused, insecure when they feel insecure, and not try to hide everything under layers upon onion layers of fronts and pretenses and acting. So, maybe my approach doesn't always work. But when it works, it works. :) And it's so much nicer when I'm not having to stress out all the time about whether or not I sent more than my weekly allotment of text messages, or if I acted too interested, or if I was a bit too sincere about something. So much less drama.

The only piece of dating advice I have heard that I felt like was remotely useful was from a self-proclaimed "dating coach" (who I'm sure made tons of money off of other people's loneliness and discontent with life), that shared the phrase:

I do not give the best of me to those who don't invest in me.

Cute, it rhymes. It's more about self-respect than anything else. It's the one piece of advice I have actually tried to live by. If it is obvious that a person is not investing anything in the relationship, even if you like them, you can't invest back. He/she does not deserve the "best of" you, if he/she is not willing to put any work into it. It's not playing games. It's about demanding the respect you deserve. This applies to everyone.

So, in summary:
There are no rules.
No one can tell you how to achieve success in dating.
People play too many games.
I don't like it.
Sometimes I do it anyway out of habit.
I still don't like it.
Have some self-respect and you won't let people use you (as much).

I'm sorry that I didn't actually tell you how to find true love. The title of this post was deceptive. Or maybe it wasn't. Because when it comes right down to it, nobody can tell you how. There is no hard-and-fast way, or secret set of rules that works for everyone. (If someone tries to tell you otherwise, they are lying to you, and most likely want your money.) But the good news is, you will probably manage to find it anyway, by just stumbling through life like the rest of us. So in a way, I did tell you. Just be yourself, don't be a jerk, and keep your priorities in order. You won't find love. Love will find you. And if not, there is always cats. Lots and lots of cats...

My mom emailed me this a while back... hmm...

Monday, February 13, 2012

cat love

The last one is my favorite (and nothing to do with love, really... but I love it, so deal).

Down with love

Okay, after 22 of these posts, I am officially sick of love. How did this seem like a good idea?!