I've been in such a weird, sad mood since I got home from my trip. I feel all abstracted, out of sorts, like there's something big processing in my sub-consciousness. No idea what it is, though.

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My trip was incredible, for so many reasons. I met a lot of great people, saw a lot of great things -- not touristy things, generally, but just everyday things I loved -- and I saw my Norwegians four times, from the second or first rows. But now I'm home, and depressed. Sigh.

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I got over the cold from my last post -- in record time for me, in fact! -- and then on my way to work I stopped at my dad's work. I was still angry with him, and I stormed out of his office and directly into a steel beam. My first concussion!

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I knew that working two jobs, especially the kind of hours and the kind of conditions in a haunted house, was going to wear me down. So I started drinking extra water, eating more produce, getting as much sleep as I could. I really tried to take care of myself.

And I got sick anyway. Godfreakingdammit.

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This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of NMEDA. All opinions are 100% mine.

I hope this doesn't come across as insensitive, but I've always wondered where people with disabilities get cars they drive with hand pedals, etc. I've never seen a dealership for them, or advertisements for them. And I didn't know about NMEDA, a non-profit organization that promotes safer transportation for the disabled. They don't sell anything themselves; instead they certify dealers to offer safe vehicles that meet National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Guidelines. Additionally, their Quality Assurance program is THE nationally recognized accreditation program for the Adaptive Mobility Equipment Industry.

I've never been a caregiver for someone with a disability, but my mom works as a CNA, so I've heard her talk about some of the difficulties, especially regarding transportation. I know she's cared for a lot of elderly people who had lost their independence because they had no transportation; it's nice to know there's an organization like NMEDA who can help people in those situations. It's especially nice because I know there are plenty of unscrupulous people who would sell vehicles personally or over the Internet, and those vehicles may not be 100% safe. It's difficult enough to judge if an average vehicle is safe, or if you're being ripped off; I can only image how difficult it would be to try to discern if an adapted vehicle is safe or not.

Visit my sponsor: NMEDA

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I'm getting more and more angry with him. Not about the fact that he won't help me with my trip -- I told him I could do it without financial help, and I can. But I'm pissed off that he's trying to control me! He started out by asking if I was sure I wanted to do this with the "terrorist activity" in Europe; when I said yes he interrogated me about why, and said I shouldn't go alone and that I would be a target. Because apparently anyone walking down the street in London would know and/or care I'm American?

And then when I told him it was what I wanted to do, he said "Then you are as stupid as I thought. Goodbye." Then the next time he started berating me about being irresponsible, and asking why I didn't save the money and be ahead for once.

So basically, he tried to logic me out of it, then he tried to scare me; then to undermine me and convince me I'm too stupid to handle it; and then he moved on to trying to use money as leverage. Wonder what he'll try next.

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This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Geile Leon. All opinions are 100% mine.

When my father was berating me about my trip to England, he started listing all sorts of places closer by that I haven't been to, and asked why I didn't go there instead. He doesn't know the trip is centered around a certain band -- he'd be even more pissed! I just shrugged and said I'd never really been interested in anywhere near home.

Although I do have to admit it's slightly tempting to take a more luxurious vacation somewhere close by. I could go a couple of states away and for around $300 spend two nights at the Hilton Promenade at Branson Landing or Hilton Branson Convention Center Hotel. They have this "Fall In The City" package that includes show tickets, dinner, attractions, etc. Or there's a shopping package, and they do have the Tanger Outlet Mall there, and god knows I love to shop. I could run away to Missouri for a few days and spend all my spare cash, not worrying about pinching pennies or train fares or how to pay rent when I got back. I could go to lakes and theaters and museums and still be in my little American comfort zone.

Too bad I already have a plane ticket. And a couple of concert tickets. And an obsession. Oh, who am I kidding, I wouldn't take Branson over England. But it does look like a fun place if you don't have an obsession with Morten Harket.



Visit my sponsor: Enjoy an exhilarating weekend getaway in Branson!

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One of our managers at the restaurant was killed in a car wreck last week. I didn't know him well; he was new, and I'd only worked with him a handful of times. Once the initial shock passed, I wasn't very upset, until I read in the newspaper that the cops suspected alcohol was involved.


That reminded me of all the times I worried about my dad drinking and driving, as he did consistently when I was a kid. I thought about all the times that I would be huddled in bed, waiting for him to come home, wondering if he was just late or if he had had an accident. I was already feeling emotional that day because of other things, so it really was bothering me.

I had to stop to see him on my way to my evening job, and all I wanted to do was give him a hug and tell him that I love him. But before I could do that, he jumped my ass about my trip to England and started berating me about how dangerous and stupid and irresponsible it was, and that he wasn't giving me any money for my trip. Then he dismissed me without even saying goodbye. I started sobbing, and he thought I was trying to butter him up about it; when I told him what I was actually upset about ... he continued to be an ass! Basically he said people die, there was no reason to be upset, I hardly knew this person, I was being foolish, he doesn't drink and drive anymore so why was I upset. I tried to hug him and he just stood there, hands on his sides, elbows sticking out, and looked at me.

I cried the hour and a half to my job; then some more after I got there; then some more on the way home. A week later and I'm still so angry at him! 

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My father is getting married.


I am less than thrilled about this, although I managed to hide it. Luckily my grandmother didn't erupt into tears of joys and screechings about wedding plans -- she was very calm as well -- so my lack of response wasn't as out of place. I couldn't bring myself to say congratulations or I'm happy for you, because the words just burned like acid in my throat.

I want to be happy for my dad. He does seem happy with her, I guess. But I've been through this before. He was engaged before, and broke it off. And the pattern seems to be repeating. Similar time frames; just got a puppy together; and this new one is starting to try to interfere with his relationship with me just like the last one did.

It's not a big deal -- yet. At this point he's just made a vague statement that I have to buy my own car insurance because it's "causing a problem" between them. I can't imagine how, other than her being pissed he spends money every month on me.

Whatever. My concern is this: if they do get married, how can I sit and watch the ceremony? I know my parents have been apart for years, and my mom is re-married. But she got married and didn't tell me until it was done, I didn't have to sit through the proceedings. I don't know if I can do it.

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I never understood what people were talking about when they said Facebook was an addictive timesuck. And then I got a Facebook account, and now I check it incessantly, from home and from my phone. Even though mobile Internet is expensive. I can't help myself! I love it! And Boost Mobile has a monthly fee for all the Facebooking your face can handle--so I can send pictures of every stupid road sign I see to my wall to annoy, I mean amuse, all my friends. And I can Twitter every random thought I have, because I know thrilling my deliberations on life are. Or, if I'm being responsible, I can do updates for the company I'm doing social media work for. Yes, I get paid to Twitter. *cyber high-five*

And then, when I inevitably forget to pay my bill because I'm a blonde, I can use their Re-Boost options to pay online, or in person, or even with a text from my phone. They have automatic payments too, although I personally forget those are coming out of my account and end up with ridiculous bank fees.

I realize that at some point, in the far distant past, I didn't have a cell phone. And then I had a phone but not text messaging. And then text messaging, but not internet. Then I got internet on my Blackberry and that was it for me. Oh, I tried a couple of times to turn off my mobile internet service, but eventually the craving for Facebook or my e-mail got me. Hello, my name is [redacted], and I am a mobile internet addict.

Visit my sponsor: Reboost

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Right now, I'm technically unemployed. I quit my waitressing job in order to get my 401k money -- no other way to take my a-ha trip, and yes I do know exactly how responsible that is. I have a freelance job doing social media for a friend's company, but that's not a "real job".

The interesting thing is that in October, I'm going to be acting as a zombie in my friend's haunted house! WTF? Me? I've never thought I had any acting talent; I never thought I'd have anything to do with haunted houses. Mostly I never thought I had any acting talent. And I didn't audition; they just needed a zombie and stuck me in there. But they said I was great in the trial run this weekend. Of course I also screamed so much I screwed up my voice, so that could be a bit of a challenge.

I also never thought I would quit a job just go to see a band, but you know what? The idea makes me SO happy! I have a second row and a third row ticket; so that's 2/10 shows covered. I'm not sure if I'll make it to all of them, but I'm sure going to try.


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I'm never having a 401k again! At least not until I have a Real Proper Job. Having one now is just so much torture. I can't get my money unless I quit, but of course if I quit I'll have to spend a chunk of said money on bills because I quit! Gah! My life would be so much easier if I didn't have this overwhelming obsession with a-ha.


Ha! Nah, I love loving them. It would be easier if I still had credit cards, or if I hadn't made a million other incorrect decisions over the years. But that's life, right? No point in "what-ifs". All I can do now is go forward and make the best decisions I can in the moment. I've gotten better at that as I've gotten older, but sometimes I still end up lying in bed at night freaking out about the past.

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The last few weeks I've felt like I've just been spinning around, carried around in a circle around the same point. Some of it is just exhaustion -- between the heat and horrible allergies, plus a lot of random extra shifts at work, I feel like I haven't really slept in weeks. But a lot of it is waiting in limbo. I was waiting for a second job, waiting to find out if I got money for school, waiting and waiting.

Wednesday I got a lovely shock. Although my financial aid appeal was approved, I didn't get enough money to cover even one semester due to be near my federal loan limit. At first I thought, no big deal! I'll just keep looking for a second job, keep trying to put together the funds for a trip to the UK in November.

And then I found out that if you drop your classes after the first day, you have to pay 25% of tuition! WTF! So I was absolutely panicking. I could either drop my classes and pay a fuckton of money for nothing, or stay in and end up with a massive bill at the end of the semester. Fabulous.

I was going with option two, especially since I found out there were a few extra sources of money I could get--but I won't find out about those until it would be too late to drop out entirely. But I was seriously unhappy. Between the financial concerns and my depression related to not getting to see a-ha again because of this mess, I was very unhappy.

I went to my classes yesterday, and it just felt wrong. It felt like the wrong thing to be doing. It wasn't because I was bored, or even the depression. It just felt .... scratchy and uncomfortable. And then I found out that if I keep a measly one credit class, I don't have to pay the 25% tuition. I do have to pay for that credit out of pocket, but it's still less. I can go back in spring, knowing exactly what I'll have for funds.

And of course, that has the side effect of maybe I can still see a-ha. Which definitely makes me feel happier.

Then I was woken up this morning by somebody here to shut off my natural gas. So I've jumped on to another merry-go-round, of finances. At least it's a slightly different view.

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I just don't have the energy to write anything at the moment. Too much and yet too little happening.

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My dad is going to Lake Powell in September. I haven't been in five years, and a week in the sun and the water sounds like a great idea. Of course, there are several problems with that scenario ... if I'm in school, do I take of a week? Could I? If I'm not, could I take the time off from the other job I'll hopefully have by then?


And either way, do I want to set back my fledgling a-ha fund by $600? The lake will be there next year .... after twenty years of going, it's unlikely my dad will suddenly decide not to go anymore. And after the misery that was the last trip there, I swore I'd never go again, actually. But that's part of why I want to go -- to erase the bad memories of last time.

But a-ha won't be around next year. So I guess there's my answer!

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Thank GOD my bastard neighbors are moving.


I got up to let my dogs out and make sure my car would start since it wouldn't last night; one of them started barking so I let her in. The other start barking while I was getting dressed, so it took a minute to get to the door. She came in, and a few seconds later I heard a huge crash - loud enough and hard enough it shook the walls. It sounded like someone had slammed their back door with ridiculous force.

I headed outside to test-start the car, and I was halfway across the lawn when I heard them fighting. I didn't hear the words, but it sounded like she was trying to talk him out of something and he was yelling back. And then I heard him yelling at me.

At first he was polite. Ish. He said something like "when you let your dogs out tonight, can you leave the door open so they can come in so they don't bark and wake me up?" I guess I didn't respond quick enough, because there went the politeness. "It gets OLD, every damn night, 12, 1, 3:30 in the morning!"

"I'll try to keep them quieter," I said. My brain was still all fuzzy from sleep, and I was struggling not to snap at him because for god's sake, it wasn't even midnight last night when I let the dogs out and their living room lights were on--and he was the only one home, his roommate's car wasn't there. I've been careful to keep them quiet at night, for the most part.

Again, apparently my answer wasn't satisfactory, because he started hollering some more. I repeated that I would try to keep them quieter; he shrugged as if I was leaving him no choice and then informed me he was going to call the sheriff if it happened again. Then he went back inside.

I was so pissed it took me a full minute to get my car door open, I kept not being able to unlock it. If two barks wakes you up, then buy some fucking earplugs, jackass. My dog only barks because THEIR dog comes to the door and jumps up in the window when she's out! Okay, so I can see how it could be annoying--as I said, last night it looked like he was still up so I was less cautious. But to threaten to call the sheriff over it? Really? This is the same guy who started screaming obscenities at their dog in the middle of the night last week (we were talking about ours cars getting broken into; their dog was running loose, my dog nosed the door open and they started fussing at each other a bit).

Now I'm kind of plotting what sorts of noises could be made at any hour that he couldn't blame on me. I hope the extra noisy car I'm driving right now wakes him up, for one. I'd purposely set off the smoke detector if it didn't freak out the dogs so much.

He's just a jackass and a bully, and I am counting down the days until they leave!

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I held a coworker's month-old son today. Third time I've seen the baby, but the first without his mother, who gives off a vibe of "don't touch my kid" combined with a "what the fuck is this thing" attitude. Very odd.


Anyway, his daddy brought him in today, and I asked to hold it. It's just What Chicks Do when there's a baby around, right? So he handed me the baby, and I very carefully supported his head and all, and after about a minute I handed him back because he was fussing. And as usual, I didn't get even a distant flicker of those gushy feelings it seems like all other woman get. His little toes and fingernails and his baby skin and his soft mop of hair didn't trigger any of that maternal crap in me. Which is normal, for me. Sometimes I just like to check. I am 28, supposedly something should be ticking by now, right?

I also have belatedly realized that I asked if I could hold "the little bean." I meant bean like "human bean", which is what my family always says. He probably thought I was being racist since he's Mexican. Oops.

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I have so many things I want to do in the next year or so, and I feel stuck because I don't know what to focus on or what to pursue.


For example, I'm two semesters away from finally finishing my damn degree. Assuming the school will give me money again, it would make sense for me to stay that course. It's another year.

But my Norwegian boys are retiring, and I'd just about kill to spend November in Europe following them around. Yes, I know that's vaguely pathetic. But dammit, I want some more adventure in my life! Doing that would require blowing off school for at least a semester -- and a second job, which I have yet to acquire (rejections are stacking up though).

But I also have an itch to move to California -- I was just so happy by the ocean! And it might be time for a change. And naturally, that presents a whole bunch of complications. I should probably finish school first while I still have in-state tuition here, plus I need to save up money.

The most logical thing to do would be to forget going to Europe, go to school, then move. But I'm so fucking tired of living according to logic! I want to do something fun, something wild, something that lasts longer than a weekend. I've spent the last ten years being responsible, and I'm tired of it. Obviously I can't abdicate all my responsibilities, but just for a little while ....

So right now, I'm looking for another job, and I'm doing the necessary paperwork to try to get money for school in case I don't find one. But if I do ... well, I'm going to go to Europe and see the things I missed out on the last time (which is just about everything), as well as my Norwegians. It may not be the most logical, responsible path, but it's what feels like it will make me happy.

There's no reason for the tiger picture, btw. Other than I was looking for a video still and that came up instead, and I like it! Who's a cute flesh-devouring kitty-kitty?

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There's a post from a couple of weeks ago called "My sweet girl!" that's just a picture of my dog. For some reason, that post is attracting spam comments like crazy! I've probably deleted twenty of them. I don't get it -- I wrote a post about penis jewelry earlier in the year and that didn't attract anything, yet my dog is a magnet for ridiculous spam?


Anyway, I've temporary engaged the word verification function to try to kill that off for the time being. Yeah, I can just delete them right now, but I don't want it to spread!

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Ever since my trips last month (oh crap, month before because it's freaking July already!), I've felt restless. I love my home state -- been here my entire life -- but I feel the need for adventure and change. I'm only in the very early pre-planning stages now, basically doing research; but I don't know how people moved long distances without the Internet!

For example, if you were looking for Apartments in North Carolina today, there are websites for that. Before, I guess you'd have to visit and try to find a place, or trust a friend to find you somewhere decent -- or even worse, go on the basis of phone calls with landlords and hope for the best. That would totally freak me out! I'm part of the spoiled internet generation -- I can't imagine taking something on like that without googling Apartment in Durham, NC or something.

North Carolina isn't actually where I'm thinking of moving, but I'm sure there's an equivalent of http://www.nc-apartments.com for Los Angeles!

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I love this man. And I've had this song stuck in my head for about a week because of this video. If I ever stop listening to non-stop a-ha, I'm going to look up more Vicious Pink.


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I have a list of songs I fall asleep to, followed by a repeating mp3 of ocean waves that works great as white noise. Last night, I actually went to bed before dawn - no way! - but I kept waking up and falling asleep.

Several times, I found myself having woken up without really realizing it, and I was just listening to my music. And it sounded so weird. I thought it was because I was half-asleep, maybe; but it sounded like part of the track was missing, or like the vocals were unusually clear. I kept rolling over and pulling my little ipod speaker closer to try to determine what sounded different. And then I'd think, "what the fuck am I doing, I need to be sleeping" and would stop.

But today, stuff still sounds strange! It's really bugging me, because these are songs I've listened to an insane number of times. Some of them I've probably listened to once a day for the last five years. And I can't even put my finger on what sounds different, exactly.

I'm way too bothered by little things, aren't I!

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I've been trying to find another job -- I really, really want to go to Europe -- but so far, no luck. Had two interviews after which I didn't get hired -- one was at a company I used to work for, doing a job I used to do! -- and another that called me for an interview but it was for an emergency position. Something with no guaranteed hours and no guaranteed shifts isn't going to work for me; as much as I hate waitressing, it is my full time job and it's not like I could just tell them to fuck off because this other place suddenly needed me on a Friday night.


And then I've gotten rejection letters on seven other jobs. I know it's a rough job market, so I'm trying not to get discouraged. I did feel really sorry for myself after the place I used to work for turned me down though, and then I got pissed. It was a call center, and when I worked there before I always got perfect scores on my random quality assurance tests. There was no reason for them not to hire me other than I think the female interviewer didn't like me. The guy seemed to.

I'll keep looking, though; I think I'm going to end up with a second restaurant job, though, at this point. Which I guess is okay. It's only for a few months anyway until I run off to chase you-know-who around Europe for a while!


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I love my sofa. It's purple, which of course was a major factor in purchasing it. It's also textured fabric which I thought wouldn't hold on to cat hair so much. HA! I haven't scraped the hair off it in two days so right now it looks gray because the hair sticks to it like no other. Sometimes I wish I'd gotten the faux-leather reclining sofa I looked at instead just because of that.

Of course, it's probably a good thing I didn't because in the last six years my cats have managed to claw the arms of my couch down through the foam to the wood. Not while I'm here of course--they're smart enough to do it while I'm gone! Bastard kitties.

Eventually I'm going to have to get a new couch; although I think I'll get a slipcover for this one for the foreseeable future. I'm broke, after all -- and assuming I do come up with money, I'll be blowing it on a trip to Europe! Eventually, though, I would like to have a nice reclining sofa with maybe a matching love seat or chair -- you know, grown-up furniture instead of the random collection of stuff I've currently cobbled together.

And a house to put it in. That might be important.

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This month has been an utter clusterfuck. I had to pay my rent late--like way late. And then my checking account was overdrawn because of it, so I had to pay fees on that. After my Sunday shift, I finally had enough to cover that and one other thing that was coming out yesterday.

Or so I thought.

My fucking bank apparently decided to push through two more things that were pending in the early afternoon--so now I'm $130 in the hole AGAIN. So now I have to make $130 to cover that, $110 for my phone bill, $682 for rent, and whatever else to keep myself and my animals fed and put gas in my car. It's not going to fucking happen.

It's only $60 but coming on the heels of everything else, it's a major fucking setback. I've paid $250 in late/overdraft fees this month because of shit like this. I'm working as hard as I can and I can't catch up. I'm so tired of this. I just want to give up. If I didn't have animals to take care of, I might just curl up in my bed and not get out ever again. Just lie there and sleep until someone physically removes me.

Yeah, I'm being melodramatic. But I've been crying so hard I can hardly breathe for half an hour, and I thought if I focused on writing it out it might help. It's not.

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And the cranky neighbors will be gone! Found out yesterday that they're moving. As are the people in half of the other building. I kind of hope that the management company can't find anyone to rent the one next to me, at least ... not having neighbors is so much more convenient! I'm not entirely surprised they're leaving--they've had electrical problems the entire time, and apparently mice too. Add me and my annoying music/dogs and ... well ... I WIN! HAHAHA!

Now, if I can just make the rest of June's rent money this weekend, I'll hopefully just barely be able to make July's rent by the 1st, and hopefully this unit won't be vacant too!

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    I live in a duplex, and my neighbors have a dog. My bigger dog is very protective, and goes nuts any time they let their dog out. She also will bark when he's just at the back door. So tonight I let her out, and after a few minutes she starts barking. I rush to the back door and call her in, but my neighbor's jerk boyfriend is already outside--exciting her more--complaining about "every night at 2:30 this has gone on for the past four nights!"

    What's gone on? Ten seconds of barking? Their dog must be whining at the door or something--which is clearly my fault, right? I have a horrible feeling they're going to complain to the property management company about me. I guess I'll have to start letting the dog out the front door at night.

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    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

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    A week ago, I was still in Los Angeles, a few hours away from going to the last North American a-ha concert. Since getting back from that trip, my activities have fallen in to several very narrow categories: working (a bit), sleeping (mostly), and a-ha obsessed things (all the rest of the time). The people around me think I'm insane, but I am totally depressed.

    (Some of it is the fact that I thought I was happy before, but now I'm realizing I was just sort of content. I don't think I've ever, ever been as happy as I was while I was in New York. And even though I know I can't have that same feeling all the time, I want closer to it than I have now.)

    But most of it ... most of it is the strange knowledge that there will be no more a-ha. No more albums; no more new songs to fall in love with; no new interviews or performances to watch on Youtube; no more chances to try to talk to Magne or sing with the crowd to "Living Daylights" or laugh at Morten forgetting the words or dance wildly to "Cry Wolf" or "wave goodbye" during "Manhattan Skyline". Their music has loomed so large in my life in the last six years that it's just difficult to even conceive of.

    And yeah, I listen to other music ... but very few things really reach out and grab me like their music does. People keep trying to tell me they'll probably come back, bands do so-called farewell tours all the time ... but I don't think so with them. This probably sounds naive, but I don't think they'd toy with their fans like that--they know exactly how obsessive we are. I mean, I certainly hope I'm wrong--I'd be so stoked if they announced at their last concert that the reaction from all their fans changed their minds. But I doubt it, and it makes me a very sad panda. I have a strangely deep sense of loss, a lingering sadness, a hollow feeling now that the object of my adoration is fragmenting.

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    For months, I've been telling myself I just had to push through to the end of the semester. I thought once I did that, I'd feel relieved.

    Instead, I feel so lost! Maybe I just can't let go of the school stress; maybe it's the financial crap; maybe the sense of loss over my retiring Norwegians. Maybe it's all of it. But I've spent most of the last three days hiding in my house, not knowing what to do with myself,
    unable to focus.
    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

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    I shouldn't feel this broken up about a band breaking up. It's stupid. But I feel like there's going to be a hole in my life after the last concert (that I'll be able to go to) tonight.

    I feel like an idiot.
    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

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    Didn't make it to the French conversation group as I had to go to the hospital to see my grandfather. I did get some stuff done/elimintated, so now ...

    School stuff.
    --French play (5/2)
    --Write up about play group, en français, à rendre le 5 mai
    --Write up about play group, en anglais, for another class (school-sponsored activity)
    --online French homework
    --pick up French composition rough draft (Friday morning)
    --French composition, due 5/4
    --Reading for in-class conversations for medieval England for 4/30
    --Article review for medieval English, due 4/30
    --français oral exam (5/3)
    --français presentation on reflexive verbs (5/5)
    --read Zimmerman Telegraph (for final 5/13)
    --read Triangle (for final 5/13)
    --get notes for medieval England/Christianity, American history for the last month of classes I missed due to the depression issues
    --study for four finals on 5/10, 11, and 13
    --write 7-9 page paper for American history class (due 5/13)
    --meet with adviser to for written graduation plan for financial aid appeal & state funding waiver for next year (second due 5/15)

    Next, trip preparations.
    --for NYC trip on 5/6, figure out what I'm taking
    --figure out transport to/from airport
    --hotel?
    --for L.A. trip on 5/14, pack!
    --make CDs for trip

    Work.
    --Friday, Sat, Sun, Tues, following Sat/Sun
    --laundry accordingly

    And personal.
    --pay phone bill
    --pay natural gas bill
    --pay rent
    --doctor's appointment on 5/5
    --dishes, have no clean bowls or glasses
    --laundry, the ever-present chore
    --vacuum and steam-clean carpet (before 5/5 as have to return steamer)
    --shave my legs (no point having a tattoo of my favorite band if I don't show it off when I go to the shows, right?)
    --buy nail polish remover, toilet paper, mixed nuts, pasta, contact solution, white vinegar, sunscreen
    --make CD I've been promising a friend for months

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    I need my dad to watch my dog while I go to New York to see a-ha, so I had to tell him I was going at all--which I originally didn't intend to. His response was "You need to re-evaluate your life if you really think that's something you need to do."

    Wonder what he'd say about my a-ha tattoo!

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    I have a mind-boggling amount of stuff to do right now. Like, an absolutely insane amount of stuff. I shouldn't even be blogging, I should be doing stuff. But my brain doesn't want to cooperate; it wants to run in circles, chasing its tail about what to do first. I thought maybe if I made some sort of list, a timeline, I'd feel less .... screwed! But every time I start writing a to-do list, I get distracted, I wander off, and I lose it. This is more permanent! Plus you people come here to read the ridiculous details of my life, right? Ha!

    I'll start with the school stuff.
    --French conversation group (Thursday 4/29)
    --Write up about convo group, en français, à rendre le 5 mai
    --Write up about convo group, en anglais, for another class (school-sponsored activity)
    --online French homework
    --French composition, due 5/4
    --Reading for in-class conversations for medieval England/Christianity for 4/30
    --Article review for medieval English, due 4/30
    --français oral exam (5/3)
    --français presentation on reflexive verbs (5/5)
    --read Zimmerman Telegraph (for final 5/13)
    --read Triangle (for final 5/13)
    --get notes for medieval England/Christianity, American history for the last month of classes I missed due to the depression issues
    --study for four finals on 5/10, 11, and 13
    --write 7-9 page paper for American history class (due 5/13)
    --fill out financial aid application form for next school year
    --meet with adviser to for written graduation plan for financial aid appeal & state funding waiver for next year (second due 5/15)
    --meet with professor to beg for chance to make up missed points (5/29)

    Next, trip preparations.
    --for NYC trip on 5/6, figure out what I'm taking
    --figure out transport to/from airport
    --hotel?
    --get t-shirt printed
    --for L.A. trip on 5/14, pack!
    --buy sunscreen
    --finalize dog sitters
    --make CDs for trip

    Work.
    --Friday, Sat, Sun, Tues, following Sat/Sun
    --laundry accordingly

    And personal.
    --lunch with friend (3/29)
    --dinner with friend (3/29)
    --visit grandfather in hospital for infection, depending on if he's still there tomorrow
    --pay phone bill
    --pay natural gas bill
    --pay rent
    --doctor's appointment on 5/5
    --dishes, have no clean bowls or glasses
    --laundry, the ever-present chore
    --vacuum and steam-clean carpet (before 5/5 as have to return steamer)
    --shave my legs (no point having a tattoo of my favorite band if I don't show it off when I go to the shows, right?)
    --buy nail polish remover, toilet paper, mixed nuts, pasta, contact solution, white vinegar
    --make CD I've been promising a friend for months

    What can I say except FUCK MY LIFE.

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    I've been trying to get my house a little more organized, by which I mean organized at all. I still have several boxes from when I moved--the contents have changed a bit, but basically I've just been shuffling random stuff around for almost two years.

    So I finally started buying tubs for organization, including one that I've been thinking of my "hobby" tub. Because I did used to have hobbies. I've spent the last ten minutes wistfully looking over my horse's old saddle, bridle, and some random pieces of my grooming kit. He's been dead for four years; they still smell like him. I regret not spending more time with my poor horse; once I started college he pretty much stood around. It makes me cry to think of it, I wish I had been ... better.

    Anyway, I used to ride my horse, I used to play my clarinet, I took some guitar lessons for a while, I have a bunch of yarn because I used to (try to) crotchet, I have about six cross-stitches I'll get around to finishing eventually. I have scrapbooking stuff.

    I used to do things other than work, sleep, and struggle through classes.

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    So commercials like this ...



    and this ....



    or this with semen-like salad dressing dripping past cleavage ...



    Those are all okay. But apparently, ABC and freaking Fox refused to air this Lane Bryant commercial. I wonder why. Could it be because Ashley Graham isn't a stick figure?

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    It's strange to be so busy, yet so bored. I work, I go to class (usually, sometimes), I watch tv, and that's about it. I don't have money, or time, to go do the things I like to do. Plus it's lonesome--all the people I work with like to go out and get wasted, which is not something I want to do. It's surprisingly difficult to find someone in my social circle to just go to a movie with, or to the museum, or whatever. Add to that the scheduling conflicts and the lack of money, and I guess it's not surprising that I do so little.

    Just a few more weeks of school, and at least my schedule will open up a little bit. For a while.

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    So I've written several times before, whining about how my depression seems to be coming back. And then I don't go to the doctor, because I start feeling better ... or so I think. At least about the big things. I realized just now how insidious all the little symptoms are. Tonight after work I went for a long drive, just because; I drove twenty miles up into the foothills, listening to melancholy songs the entire time. Then I came home curled up on my couch and watched some tv. And cried over stupid things. And continued crying.

    What really hit me, though, was when I was reading through some blogs. Because if I were feeling normal, I'd be commenting. Instead, I read, and I say nothing, because I feel like there's a wall between me and everyone else. And I didn't even really realize it until now, because it's just been so slow to come on. I thought I was just tired, or just stressed, or just irritated at my coworkers, or ... I don't know. But for some reason it clicked tonight. This is how I spent years feeling. I have got to go to the fucking doctor, I have got to deal with this, I cannot let it keep going on. I'm barely hanging on, I'm going to go right over the edge and back in to the abyss of failing classes and shit again.

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    I just love getting irate calls from my father because he got a call from someone threatening to sue me--for an amount I don't even fucking know what it belongs to! I know I owe money to allllll sorts of different places, but not that amount, and not to that creditor. It's freaking stressing me out not knowing.

    ETA: Turns out it was a different company from what my dad said, and it hasn't even been sent to collections yet! So either he massively misunderstood, or somebody from that company went way beyond the scope of her job and was making threats.

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    When I was living with my aunt and cousins, working as their nanny, one of my least favorite parts of that was the fact that my cousin had a piano. Or, to be more accurate, the fact that her piano was in the living room, which was directly above my room, and she liked to practice before school. At which point I would've probably just gone to bed. Ah, those were the days.

    Even though I hated that piano, I'd sometimes play around on it when nobody else was home. I never took piano lessons, even though my dad taught me to read music when I was five. I had an electronic keyboard, which my parents soon regretted when I discovered I could play "Silent Night" on an electronic violin setting. Last my dad bought me an electric organ, which I thought was super cool--it had twice as many annoying instruments! But I still couldn't play with both hands, and had a hard time remembering the keys. I think it's because at that point I'd started playing the clarinet, which is in a different key, and my little brain just couldn't handle it. Wonder where that thing went anyway.

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    I was honestly starting to wonder if I was going to pass my French class this semester. I've missed a lot of classes, between hurting my back, getting sick, getting sick again, depression bullcrap, and sleeping through my alarm. I've also not turned in quite a few assignments. On Friday in class, my least favorite teacher handed out grades. I have a 72.something percent. And I am so okay with that. As long as I don't miss anything more, I'll have a C for the semester. Which is good enough to satisfy the prerequisite for the next semester of French, good enough to maintain my GPA above the point where I need it, and good enough for it to be a completed credit so I'll (hopefully) get financial aid for my last year.

    And hopefully my next French teacher won't be such an almighty bitch. Not that it's her fault I've missed as much class as I have, of course. Her attitude just sucks, she's sarcastic and short with everyone in the class, completely unapproachable. She's made me hate the class, even though I love the subject, so I'll be glad to be done with her.

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    I called my dad last night to see how he was feeling, since he'd been sick over the weekend. There was no answer, so I just left a message and went about my way. About fifteen minutes later, at about eight at night, my phone rang. Thinking it was my dad, I answered.

    Oh my freaking god. It was his damn girlfriend, who was totally fucking hammered. She obviously thought she was hiding it, but she kept stumbling over her words, mis-pronouncing them and sometimes just stopping in the middle of a sentence and going silent. Other times her sentences were just making no sense at all. She thought they were hilarious though.

    My dad's obviously been complaining about me being single, and about why things didn't work with my ex, because she even started asking me about him. And then she was asking me about school, and why I was reading a history book for school, and then started talking about how she likes to read erotic stuff from the 18th century. Uh, okay.

    It would've been really uncomfortable if I thought she'd remember it today!

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    This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Alvin and the Chipmunks. All opinions are 100% mine.

    A few months ago, I was driving by a movie theater and saw two words on a movie marquee: "The Squeakquel". I called my mom and was all, "I just saw the weirdest thing. WTF is a squeakquel?"

    Yeah, I had no idea there was an Alvin & the Chipmunks movie, let alone a "squeakquel". I'm so clueless. I only knew it as the cute little cartoon from when I was a kid--David screaming "ALLLLLVINNNNNNN!!!" and the little song at the beginning: "Alvin-Simon, The-o-dore!"

    Anybody who's read my server blog knows how I feel about kids--namely that they're noisy and gooey and not something I like. So even once I knew of the existence of said Squeakquel, I didn't see it. I don't actually know much about the movie itself, but I do remember the Chipmunks being adorable and fun when I was a kid. So now that you can buy it now on DVD, Blu-ray (I still don't quite know what the point of Blu-ray is, personally), and as a digital download, I'm sure it's a great addition to a family's movie collection. The DVD double pack comes with something called "The Squeak Along"--which I'll be honest, sounds like pure hell to me, but also like the kind of thing kids would totally dig. I bet there'd be some delightful screeching if I bought it for my youngest cousin.

    You can also get your kids involved in More Munk Mayhem, stuff like making a chipmunk version of themselves and stuff. Okay, that part's kinda cute!



    Visit my sponsor: Alvin and the Chipmunks:

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    So while looking up James Franco because of the previous post, I noticed something on his IMDB profile: under the in development are is something called "Mystery White Boy". I kind of looked at that for a minute, thinking, nah. Can't be. Could it be? Yes, yes it could: a movie about Jeff Buckley!

    It doesn't say how Franco is involved, but I'd bet he's playing Jeff--with the right hairstyle, he's almost a dead ringer for him. Uh, no pun intended, what with the deadness and all. I first noticed it in Tristan + Isolde (left). Which is probably one of whinest, most emo movies I own, but I love it like candy. Kind of like those damn Twilight books, actually.

    Anyway, I'm interested to see if this movie about Jeff actually pans out, there's been talk of it for a long time, but his mother's been against it. Apparently now she's taking an active part in it, so it doesn't depict him in an unflattering way. I sort of feel bad for her, her son's been dead for thirteen years and she's still having to deal with this sort of stuff endlessly.

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    This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of 20th Century Fox. All opinions are 100% mine.



    I admit, I'm not usually a fan of Tina Fey. Her Sarah Palin impression was pretty hilarious, but the rest of the time, eh, not so much. Steve Carell, on the other hand, cracks my shit up. So, even though I don't have a date, I might go see their Date Night Movie" anyway. It looks pretty funny:



    (Wasn't that the guy from Pineapple Express in there? Yes, yes it was. Okay, curiosity sated.)

    What's not to love about a movie with a shootout, a car chase, a strip club, and a mob boss, and Steve Carell screaming "KILL SHOT! THAT'S A KILL SHOT!" (From a different commercial, that, but it just makes me giggle, not actually sure why.) The movie opens April 9th, which, hey, that's this weekend! Opening weekend is a great time to see a movie--am I being too subtle here? What, are you going to stay home and watch that stupid teenage vampire movie again or something?

    Oh, wait. Uh, that's me, which the obsession and stuff. Anyway. Funny people, funny looking movie, comes out this weekend. Grab some popcorn and go watch Tiny Fey pretend she's the new girl at the strip club (but she doesn't really have gum).


    Visit my sponsor: Date Night

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    I've been checking the humane society's website every day, looking to see if my pretty mister gets put in the adoption area. Today, he was posted. They even kept the name I gave him. I'm fighting back tears now, I miss him so much. But I know I did the right thing; he'll be happier with a different owner who has more time and space for him.

    Some day, I'm going to have a giant house and I will rescue many, many kitties from shelters in memory of my mister.

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    My dad drives me absolutely nuts sometimes. There was no reason he couldn't have talked to me about what he was calling about last night. No reason for him to stress me out. I even told him that he was stressing me out, and he still wouldn't just tell me what was going on. Gah! Seriously! Gah!

    Also, I'm feeling ever so slightly less scummy about the cat situation, since I'm 99% sure he's already listed on the adoption page. There's not a picture, but the description and age match and it's a new listing.

    I still feel like crying when I think about him headbutting me and licking my chin; I still want to go and re-adopt him. But I can't. I don't have room, I don't have time, I just can't. Even though I miss him awfully.

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    He knows that I get stressed out when he says he needs to talk to me, but won't tell me when I'm at work or only have a few minutes. I've been stressed out all night, because when I called him back he was sleeping and insisted I call him tomorrow. Gah! It could be absolutely nothing, he's done that before. But I have this awful feeling he's going to marry his girlfriend and wants to prepare me before he makes an announcement to the family on Sunday.

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    I took that poor sweet beautiful cat to the humane society today. I feel worse than scum. I keep thinking of him in one of those tiny little cages and I start crying all over again. But I just couldn't deal with so many animals anymore. It was too hectic, and it was stressing them all out, and he deserved more attention and space than I could give him. And I'm allergic to him, moreso than the others. I've been pondering this for weeks, I'm not sure why today I finally did it.

    I cried for 45 minutes before I put him in the carrier, and then all the way there; I broke down again when the lady took him from me, and I cried all the way home. He's so sweet and loving ... he'll be adopted, I'm sure of it. But I still feel like the worst scum ever for abandoning him.

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    It's 5:40 in the morning, and I haven't gone to bed yet. That's partially because I was watching Ugly Betty, but mostly because I've been fretting and worrying about things.

    I know it's stupid. There's absolutely nothing I can do right now, for example, about the fact that I have numerous collection agencies calling me. I don't have any money for them, and sitting on my couch chewing my lower lip to shreds doesn't fix that. I could do something about my reading for school that I'm behind on, if I could focus. I can't do anything right now about the fact that I'm simultaneously lonely and apathetic about even trying to have a relationship (even if I knew where to look). Picking at anything blemish-like on my arms won't help my frustration over my job sucking. Etc. etc. etc. I just feel anxious, uncertain, jittery.

    I should have gone to bed when I got home; but I wasn't tired. The new hours at work are fucking with my sleep cycle even more than usual. And now I feel so keyed up I can't even contemplate going to bed.

    I feel like I should make a list of all the things I need and want to get done. But I know when I finally do crawl in to bed, they're all just going to spin around endlessly in my head anyway. Making a list is only going to lead to a different sort of spinning, one pondering priorities and lack of time and lack of resources, and the hopelessness of certain things anyway.

    I'm so tired of acting happy. Part of the reason I've dreaded going to work lately is because I have to act happy--not just to customers, I can fake that easily enough. But my friends at work know something is wrong, and I don't have the words to explain it. I can't even explain it to myself. Which again is a sign my meds need adjusting, so I should just shut up and go to bed and make the appointment Monday morning.

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    I'm going through another slump, another bout of feeling .... I don't know, flat. Like breathing is an effort, like doing anything takes a huge effort. And I don't know why. There's nothing wrong, goddammit! I've got a lot of homework, and I've got a lot of bills, but it's nothing out of the ordinary. And yet all I want to do is slump around my house, doing nothing. I could quite contently flop on my couch and stare at the ceiling for hours. I slept for nine hours this afternoon because of this.

    I don't know what to do. I'm already on happy pills, after all. And like I said, there isn't anything actually wrong. So why the hell do I feel like this? Why do I feel like crying every time I have to go to work, and why do I struggle to do something as little as clean the cat boxes? It's absolutely idiotic.

    Of course, telling myself that doesn't alter my brain chemistry. I guess it's time for me to go to the doctor about my dosage again. Let's see how long it takes me to fight through the depressed feelings to actually make that appointment.

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    My dad's girlfriend has moved in with him. That basically means I'll never see him alone, because she has no life--she has no friends and doesn't talk to her own family. Kind of takes the shine off spending time with my dad if most of that time will involve being nauseated by them playing kissy-face.

    It doesn't help that I found out she's the one who let our dog out and didn't watch him. Oh, and the same day I found that out, I discovered why my mom was acting so weird a couple of years ago. Turns out her husband has a little problem with crack.

    Awesome.


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    One of my favorite chick-lit books, Confessions of a Shopaholic, features the main character going luggage shopping and feeling as if she's entered an entire new world of things to buy. It always kind of made me laugh, because how often do you even look at your luggage? I have a sturdy blue suitcase somewhere--I say somewhere because I don't know if it's at my dad's current house, our old house, or with my mother. I haven't seen it in years. I just don't think about luggage, I suppose because I so rarely travel anywhere that actually requires it.

    I guess it could be kind of fun though--there's some Vera Bradley luggage that's actually sort of pretty. And there's some kind of hot Hartmann luggage in a red crocodile that I like. Not that I can remotely afford it, of course! But someday .... someday, I'll have a matching set of luggage, and trips to take it on, and a couch that doesn't have huge patches of exposed foam on the arms from my cats, and .... someday!

    Enough dreaming, time for me to get to work!

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    One of the many things I miss about my life pre-school is disposable income. I used to be able to shop! I accumulated quite a few purses, and a ridiculous amount of clothing, and 75 necklaces, and shoes. Oh, I love shoes! I have a couple dozen pairs of them, which I now have nowhere to wear, but I love them anyway. I can't afford any more now, and I don't need them, for sure. But that doesn't stop me from browsing sites that have designer footwear for me to pine after.

    Like this black shoe! Look at it! There's so much going on with it, it's crazy. Buckles and beads and netting and suede and a thin high heel that I wouldn't be able to walk in, and the weird double-sole thing in the front. But I love it anyway. Would I buy it even if I did have an extra $200? Well, probably not. If they were only $60? Yeah, I'd try it then. I'm just a sucker for pretty shoes. My mom always was too, and I resisted it for the first 24 years of my life, but now, well, I'm a shoe girl.

    A seriously lacking in funds shoe girl, of course.

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    I don't know what was up the last few weeks, but I'm starting to feel more level now. I did kind of go apeshit at work on Sunday and started yelling and crying, but there were actual triggers for that so I don't feel so bad about that!

    I don't know if it's because of missing those few days of my Prozac, or stress from midterms, or what, but I finally feel like I'm back to normal. Work has been more tolerable the last few days, I haven't been having panic attacks, and things are just generally better. I feel like I can breathe again.

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    I've felt really depressed for the last month or so. At first I thought it was PMS; then I thought it was because of the dog sadness; then I was sick. Now I'm not sick, it started before the dog died, it went on too long to be PMS and would be DMS now.

    And I still just feel .... just plain depressed. I'll be sitting around reading or whatever, and suddenly have this panicky feeling of dread and start flipping out. Or I'll start sobbing over nothing. Or I'll sit on my couch and stare at the wall blankly for long periods of time. I don't understand what's going on. It's so incredibly frustrating, because I'll be crying and saying to myself "there's nothing wrong, why am I crying? There's nothing wrong." It's interfering with my life: I'm struggling to study, struggling to get anything done around the house, struggling to maintain a happy facade at work.

    I'm hoping it was PMS, then it was because of the dog, then it was because I was sick, and now it's because when I was sick I forgot to take my happy pills for about three days. I'll give it another week or so and if it's not better I guess I'll go back to the doctor. I feel like I'm going insane.

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    Every fat women gets it at some point in her life. People can't just say she's pretty; it's always "you have such a pretty face!" or, god forbid, "you'd be so pretty if you lost some weight!" The people saying these things think it's a compliment, or they think it's encouraging in some fucked up way.

    It's been a long time since I've heard that crap; I think most of my family just gave up on "encouraging" me to lose weight with those comments. Actually, I can't think of the last time (before this incident) that anybody said anything about my appearance other than a general "you look nice".

    Last week I was talking to a friend of mine after work. I don't even remember what we were talking about, but I made some reference to being fat--not in any derogatory way, just as a statement of fact. That's when my friend told me that apparently when I started working there, a bunch of my coworkers were sitting around talking. Somehow the subject of me came up, and the general consensus was basically that I have such a pretty face.

    Weird to know that goes on behind my back.

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    I got my first tattoo last week. I'm thrilled with it, I love it, but I almost canceled because half an hour before my appointment, my dad called to tell me that our dog is dead. Or at least, he's almost certainly dead, he ran off into the forest a week before and never came home. I didn't want my tattoo associated with finding that out, but I'm glad I went through with it. I spent the next couple of days bursting in to tears at inappropriate moments, unable to stop thinking about all the terrible things that could have happened to our poor puppy. He was originally my mom's dog, so I had to tell her ... but I couldn't tell her the truth. I lied and said he died in his sleep so she wouldn't be as upset as me.

    Now, of course, I can't cry to my usual support person about why I'm so upset, so I'm still struggling with it. But I did the right thing, her heart would've been utterly broken. Like my dad's is, he blames himself and he's just miserable. It just fucking sucks all the way around. I still can't really talk about him without crying.

    And then I got a cold, just when I was starting to feel emotionally better. I've spent the last two days resting and sucking down juice and tea, and I think I actually feel worse than when I first got sick. Whining will end ... now.

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    Two weeks ago, on Super Bowl Sunday, I slipped on a patch of ice and wrenched the bejesus out of my lower back. It's mostly better now; still a little stiff when I first get up in the morning, and still giving me some sciatica-like pains down my legs, but so much better than at first. The first couple of days I could hardly walk. Made working really interesting, let me tell you.

    A consequence of this is the fact that stairs? Really not my friends. If I really, really, really had to, I could climb the three flights of stairs to my first class every morning. And I can manage to go down them now. So that's progress. But I choose not to aggravate my strained muscles, and so I've been taking the elevator up in the morning.

    I never took the elevator before, even though the stairs hurt my knees a little bit; it wasn't necessary. And back in the day, before I stopped hating myself, I would never use an elevator when there were stairs, specifically because I was afraid people would look at me and think, "Well that's why she's such a lardass!" That thought entered my head again as I started using the elevator because of my back; the one time somebody else was on it I felt ashamed. (It's kind of tucked away in a corner of the building, most people probably don't know it's there. I actually didn't originally either.)

    Luckily, I was able to nip that in the bud right away. If somebody wants to think I'm fat because I use the elevator, then fuck them. Fuck them with something hard and sandpapery. I'm not going to cause myself more pain just to avoid some ignorant stranger's thoughts about me. I wish it hadn't taken me the first, oh, 23 years of my life to achieve that attitude. But I've also learned that those insidious kinds of thoughts can creep back in to my head--it's not something you're ever just done with, this whole process of accepting yourself and withstanding societal pressures and opinions about being fat.

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    I'm sitting in the computer lab at school between classes, watching videos on Youtube. I was actually looking for the official music video, but stumbled across this. One of my favorite songs! Also, not like it's news, but goddamn Morten Harket is fine.

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    I went today to the local Cricket store and bought their broadband Internet. I kind of hate it, to be honest; only because I'm used to the crazy-fast speed of my Comcast cable internet. But I hate paying $70 a month more, and the Cricket thing is only $40, and it's tolerable.

    And that's $30 a month I'm saving. I've been thinking about switching for a few weeks, since a friend of mine mentioned it. What pushed me over the edge in to doing it is the simple fact that I want to see a-ha twice! I bought a ticket to a New York show in case the LA shows sold out; but I was able to get tickets to an LA show for me and my cousins. But honestly, I'd still really like to go to the NYC show. It's general admission, standing room, which means dancing and fun. The LA show is seated and I'll have two teenagers in tow! I have frequent flyer miles to get me to one show, but the other I'll have to pay for.

    • So if I reduce my Internet, that's $30 a month I'll save.
    • I've put my gym membership on hold (no more late-night swims for me), so that's another $20.
    • I've thought about putting my Booksfree.com membership on hold too, especially since I've got so much school-related reading to do; that'd be another $20. The automatic payment for this month just went through, but I might do it next month. I just read so much it's hard not to keep it.
    • As much as I love it, I don't neeeeeed internet on my Blackberry. So that's $30 I've just saved myself by canceling that.
    • The only other non-essential thing I have is my Dish Network tv. And I really don't want to get rid of that. My weekly episodes of House, Bones, etc. are my entertainment.
    • I need to really focus on getting up early enough to catch the bus to campus. I've been parking at school a couple of times a week, which ads up quickly. It's just so damn convenient, especially when I'm exhausted (every day) and have three hours between classes where a car nap is quite refreshing!
    Okay, so this isn't all in the name of a-ha; it's more general budgeting. But hopefully I can manage the a-ha stuff too.

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    Writing a review of it, that's what.

    I've got one out of 3-4 pages done on this; but to be honest, it's so dense and ridiculously complicated that it's very difficult to try to summarize. If you ever look at The Cult of the Saints and think, "hey, that might be interesting!" you're wrong. It's skull-explodingly horrid. And here I sit, banging my head against a wall trying to write about it--without writing in first person, and without saying anything insulting about it, considering this man is my professor's academic hero. Christ.

    I need to just write this and not worry about it being perfect. This is really nothing but busywork anyway. I'm off academic probation; I'm not headed for grad school; I don't need to get a perfect score. I just need to get an average grade on this, and not be so hard on myself.

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    For two of my classes, a significant part of my grade comes from one of two things: three short book reviews or one long research paper. The reviews have to be finished in stages; the first one, for each class, is due this Friday. And I don't feel up to it. It's too intimidating--to critique professional writers, for the professor of an upper-level history class? I'm scared to try. What if I turn it in and it's terrible and my professor, who I'm really starting to like a lot, thinks I'm an idiot?

    I've got to stop this. Every time I feel like I'm going to fall on my face with a writing assignment, I do fine. Usually I bash something out the night before, fret that it sucks, and end up getting a great grade. So I need to just shut up, and do it.

    I also still need to put together a freelance proposal for Internet marketing for my friend's business. The company did some restructuring and things were on hold for a while, so I wasn't even sure if I should do it; but now things are back on, and I need to get off my butt and do it.

    But first, I need to do this paper. Eeek. It doesn't help that what I have to review is the world's most boring book, which is written in such a horrid and confusing style that honestly half the class didn't even understand it.

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    So my classmate and her friends were going to give my pretty mister a home, as I said a couple of days ago. The next day, she called me and said her roommate had backed out--after she'd bought all the necessary supplies. The day after that, she said she'd take him anyway and her roommates could deal for the month before they move. That afternoon, one of her roommates went and told the landlord about the cat, so the landlord will now be doing random checks--which is particularly stupid seeing as one of them has a puppy they're not supposed to!

    So Mister is still here. I had to change his ball-snipping appointment, because I couldn't pick him up that day; so a week from Wednesday he gets neutered, which will hopefully make my life easier. Everybody's getting along better, for the most part; but I can't risk kittens so I'm still having to sequester him a lot.

    My classmate still might take him after she moves, if I still have him. For now, though, he's still here, and I'm still getting more attached.

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    We just had a class discussion on Beowulf in my medieval England class. It's the only version I've actually read, so I don't know it all versions of it have the heavily forced Christian elements jammed in. What's incredibly frustrating about all this is that my classmates are largely incapable of looking beyond the forced Christian metaphors. To me, it's much more interesting to ignore that and are what it shows about Germanic culture. Focusing on the artificial Christian aspects is like forcing the Christian god in to the story of Hercules and focusing on that! Grendel's mother is not a damn metaphor for Eve! Grendel himself is not a stand-in for Cain. It's not a condemnation of pagans, who are "unable" to defend themselves because they don't "know" God. You know why none of those things are true? Because the societies that created the story and passed along the oral tradition were freaking pagans! Some thieving middle ages monks co-opting the story (in a very ham-handed and crude manner) does not retroactively change the roots of the story.

    The professor kept trying to get people to talk about the Germanic roots, and how the Christians tried to use it. But people kept raising their hands with crap like, "I think Grendel's mother's lair is a reverse parallel of Eden!" No it's not! It's a damn swamp! Bunch of freaking morons.
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    I love the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding. It's so adorable, and I kind of have a little crush on John Corbett. I was unduly excited when I was watching TV one day and heard his voice. I was then embarrassed that I was momentarily excited by an Applebee's commercial.

    I got three hours of sleep so I'm totally rambling, but the point of this is that SkippyMom is have a V-Day giveaway! Check out her blog to find out how to win a copy of My Big Fat Greek Wedding and deliciousness to boot.

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    A classmate is going to adopt my pretty mister. I'm taking him to the vet to get neutered on Friday and she'll pick him up. That way he can recover in a house where he's not being harassed by three other cats and two dogs. I know it'll be better for him to live with her, more space and more love. But I'm going to miss his kitten kisses. :(
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