Category: Shameful

The Emotional Equivelent of “LA LA LA! I CAN’T HEAR YOU!”

“Why the HELL didn’t I continue with French?!”
“Don’t swear.”
“Why the CUSS didn’t I continue with French?”
“Well, you can take classes.”
“Yes but if I don’t do well, and I haven’t studied it for three years, it will affect my GPA which will affect my application.  CUSS CUSS CUSS!”
– C. and J.

We all have them, but for about a month or so I’ve been going through a right awful funk.  And although I wish I could say I’ve been keeping it under wraps, I’m afraid it’s been spilling over a bit.  I’ve gotten noticeably sharp with people, even friends, short-tempered at work, and bitter about small things that have just seemed to mount on top of each other.  It culminated last night in a meeting for J.’s new fraternity for accountants when I was exhausted and stressed.  I tried to be funny but only succeeded in being rude, and collapsed in a sobbing pile of guilt when we got home. 

Unfortunately, I’m a bottler: I keep things locked up inside until the inevitable explosion that tends to leave a wake of destruction.  And even though we’ve all been told time and time again that this is not a healthy way to live, so many of us keep doing it because it has some obvious immediate benefits.

Liar.

My problems are petty and selfish, but that doesn’t make them irrelevant or mean they don’t affect my life. 

– I’m in a state of constant frustration that I spent four years getting an education, but work in a job that has nothing to do with what I studied (the European Studies field is not exactly conducive to jobs in the Western United States).

– I don’t really like living where we do.

Humph!

– Truthfully, I had this plan post-graduation, which involved me moving back to England.  I am an ENTJ, I frame my life in these little plans and get frustrated when they don’t come to fruition.  It wouldn’t matter if common sense, good counsel, or God changed my plans, I’d still get annoyed/angry if things didn’t work out the way that I had intended.  (Which I absolutely think happened in my decision to get married and stay in the States, and which I still think is probably the best decision I’ve made for myself.  It’s just not what I thought was in the cards a year and a half ago; that’s what makes my little control-freak, inner Napoleon jump up and down howling, “Zees was not le plan!”)

– I miss being in school and recently came to the conclusion, after much deliberation, that I wanted to pursue grad school.  And seeing as I can take classes for free, a perk of working for a university, why not?  Problem A) my major, which I loved and would not hesitate to choose again, did not really prepare me for any of the graduate degrees offered here.  My emphasis was in history and they have removed the MA in History degree (an idiotic move if ever there was one!).
Problem B) the next best degree, and one I am really interested in due to the interdisciplinary nature of the program, requires more classes in French.  Which, if I want to get into the program beginning this coming fall, I’d need to complete in record time.  A troublesome goal if one works full-time.  Oh!  And I’d need to take the GRE in about a month.

Mostly, I feel stuck.  I can’t progress (at least immediately) in the way I want my education to go, we aren’t leaving this area (at least immediately) for a small eternity, and I can’t pursue my own interests (at least immediately) due to duty to my family. 

And I’m the most impatient person I know!

There are treatments.  Obviously I need to take better care of myself.  I don’t work out anymore [again] and I’ve noticed that I haven’t been eating enough, which would put anyone in a strop.  I also don’t have any pursuits outside of work right now, and that’s soul-numbing.  I’m committed to grad school, but will I kill myself trying to make it happen all at once (or at least before the March application deadline)?  Maybe I should make it a goal for next year and work more slowly and steadily towards it instead of trying to rush it.

Weigh in, friends.  Had a minor life crisis recently?  Plans get disrupted?  Get impatient with goals that are attainable, but seem so far off?

Get A Grip…

“‘You could always try relaxing.’
Relaxing!  She was way too hyper!”
-Marian Keyes

My arch nemesis!)
My arch nemesis!)

Long ago I discovered that I work best when I frame my life projects and goals as battles to be won (yes, I am Napolean reincarnated).  Thus my life is tiny parade of tiny crusades that I participate in valiantly and no one really cares about but me.  Case in point: blackheads.  Hate ’em!  Loathe em!  I have a mission, nay, a calling to eradicate those nasty little buggers and a whole arsenal at my disposal including cleansers, extractors, a new toy – Clean ‘n Clear Blackhead Eraser – recommended by Venice and seconded by me, and Biore Pore Strips, aka God’s Gift to Noses.  Want to seriously gross yourself out?  Slap one of those babies on and see how much gunk it pulls out of your face! 

Of course, this mentality has side effects.  Since I’m in a state of perpetual warfare with blackheads I often make the mistake of thinking other people are too.  So when I see people merrily prancing through their lives, seemingly indifferent to the noxious body waste pooling in their pores, I just want to attack them with salic acid.  The crusader aiming a sword stroke at the Turk and demanding, “Convert, heathen!” while they stare back in confused disdain, “What exactly is your problem?”

Occasionally my battles are of a more productive variety.  I’ve written several times of my Battle of the Bulge, even though I’ll be the first to admit that since buying a dress the ferocity of my attacks have put a serious dent in enemy flanks (plus my own flanks, I might add smugly).  I’ve also campaigned against landlords, laundry piles of epic proportions, work projects, more recently wedding planning, mountains during hiking trips, treadmills, and shoes that think I won’t be able to break them in (HA!). 

I am aware that this is a rather exhausting way to live life.  For example, the university does this health reward program which gives participants $25 per lifestyle even they chose to participate in.  This month it’s a goal to walk a certain amount every day.  Not a problem, I though originally, I can easily meet that quota during my gym time.  But then I looked online today…and some guy (with an unfortunately chosen Lord of the Rings nickname, I think he’s trying to be one of the characters) had already logged ten times what I had.  Just counting at the gym, was I?!  I THINK NOT!  I dashed over to the university health center and got myself one of their sad, cheap little pedometers and have been annoying people with it’s rattling sound ever since!  Competitive?  Me?

Battle of the Sexes, Part I

Sometimes I wonder if men and women really suit each other.  Perhaps they should live next door and just visit now and then.”
-Katherine Hepburn

frustrated20womanIt has been one of those weeks that makes a girl grind her teeth in sheer, agonizing irritation.  Even though most of it has been completely uneventful, wednesdayand thursday were well and truly mind blowing, at least philosophically.  First of all we had a guy come in to report that he was being sexually harassed: about a month ago he had written a letter to the editor of the paper of the university (which is a religiously funded one with a rather conservative mindset.  Which is the understatment of the century…) about people’s various choices in fashion choice, most particularly women, and how immodestly dressed women deserved to be subjected to catcalls, name calling, and other behavior until they “put some clothes on.”  For reasons this knight errant, obsessed with protecting the virtue and chastity of women (what century is this guy living in?), could not fathom some women found this suggested behavior offensive.  Go figure.  And in the spirit of the modern age, these ladies (grand total: 2) created a Facebook group against him, which was the basis for his harassment claim. 

It took about three times longer than it should have to explain to him that while this group could be classified as libel (it was removed from the site, by the way) it did not actually constitute sexual harassment.  While the actions he was advocating, on the other hand, most definitely would fall under that category.
“I didn’t mean it seriously,” this guy huffed.
“Well, sir, the truth is that sarcasm doesn’t translate.  You aren’t responsible for the tone you intended, you are responsible for the words you wrote as they appear.”
“You agree with those girls, huh?” he asked belligerently.
Yes, thought C. nastily.  “Not necessarily,” she said politely, “I’m just pointing out that the only actions that could be construed as sexual harassment in the case are technically coming from you.”
He slouched off muttering under his breath about ten minutes later.  Clearly this guy is one of those poisonous types who think that all women should be dressing like his mother.

To be continued…

A Clean, Crisp Look

“That’s a small?!”
-Susie

The name's Dog.  Small Dog.
The name's Dog. Small Dog.

Somewhere in our military storage (the location of which I can roughly narrow down to “somewhere on one of three continents”) there is a photo album.  In this photo album is a picture, that my parents find hilarious, of me as an infant dressed in a once-white onesie and absolutely covered in spaghetti and sauce, and completely thrilled about the situation.  Though I can’t remember the incident it seems to have kicked off a lifetime curse of being messy/klutzy/generally imparied when it comes to cleanliness, pasta sauce, and white shirts. 

Eating luch at J.’s I was attacked by a tortellini shell which took an enthusiastic dive off my fork and straight down my best white shirt.  Luckily we have a bunch of (horrifically ugly) department shirts in our supply room so I found the smallest one I could and made the switch…and then doubled over laughing in the closet.  I dashed to Susie’s office to show off the marvelous sight of this “small” shirt ending somewhere around my knees, the sleeves of which extended long over my finger tips with armholes that take up half of my rib cage.

I had to tuck what feels like a couple yards of fabric into my trousers, which needless to says feels unbecomingly bulky, and roll the sleeves up three times to get them to just below my elbows.  I look like I’m having an illicit affair with a police dispatcher and had to sneak out in his shirt this morning!

You can count on Death and Taxes…and Shame…

It’s March, which means of course that all you on-top-of-it types are gearing up and finishing up taxes and no doubt getting your yearly dose of annoyance with the IRS.  I too am annoyed with the IRS, but I can promise you that we aren’t talking about the same thing.  The IRS that I am referring to is a personal condition I like to call Inappropriate Reaction Syndrome. 

A brief medical history of examples for you to understand what I am talking about!  I nearly fell to my death once spelunking and even though half of me was panicking and crying out to dad for help, the other half was thinking ridiculously, “Crap, I going to look like chowder at my funeral!”  When people do nice or really considerate things for me, my first instinct is to be annoyed, and when they do mean things I can’t help but smile.  I’ve laughed after breaking up with boyfriends and cried when people have told me they liked me.  What all this means, of course, is that I’m a complete mess.  However, even being aware of my condition isn’t enough to save the innocent victims it claims.

 IRS struck again today and outdid itself, even from my point of view.  I’d gone in to work and had three projects simultaneously tossed at my head the moment I sat down, but even so I had to work the front desk to handle the basic customer service questions of international law so I was a bit crazier than usual was trying to do a lot at once.  I was just about to move to the back of the office when a guy came in and asked some questions about England and the girls passed him on to me.  I answered as best I could and after he left Shell turned to me and said teasingly, “You totally could have worked that!”  “Right,” I laughed and leaned back in my chair fake-seductively and slipped into a heavy English accent, “Buy me dinner and I’ll tell you everything you need to know!”

…so imagine the collective look on the office’s face when twenty minutes he came back in and walked up to me with this half hopeful, half awkward look on his face that made my own instantly flush a disbelieving, unattractive red.  Oh no, I thought horrified, not possible! 
“Um, I was wondering if you’d like to go to dinner with me on Friday actually,” he said slowly while the other four girls watched with unholy glee, not even pretending to be working!

And then it happened.  I felt it, saw it happen from some weird third person omniscience.  IRS.

I laughed.  And not a cute, “please talk me into it” kind of girl laughter, I mean huge, rolling bursts of laughter that made his hopeful look drop off his face and crash on the floor.  I was mortified but I couldn’t stop!
“I’m…so sorry!  It’s not…that,” I gasped, trying to get it together, “it’s…an inside…joke.  That’d be…lovely…thanks…”.

So this guy left with my number and probably several years of therapy ahead of him andI feel like a total wench.  The best part is that the office has kept a running list of questions that we didn’t know the answer to for about a week now.  “C., will you go to dinner with me?” is the latest addition.

Shame…

Called it: NorCal is still playing Belle hot and cold and she swears him off at least once a day.  I’ve been trying very hard not to scream “I TOLD YOU SO” at the top of my lungs, because she’s still talking to him and I’ve a feeling he’s not totally out of the picture yet.

Other than that, I’m biting the bullet and succumbing.  The Writers’ Strike has to end, because it has started to seriously affect my judgements and principles.  I watched Cashmere Mafia for the second week in a row…and I would like to apologize (while making it simultaneously clear that I will probably be watching it again next week unless the gods take pity on us mere mortals).  I miss Pushing Daisies…will the inhumanity never end?!