Tag Archives: in/sanity

And this is why I don’t leave the house much…

For the past few days I have been incredibly irritable, cranky, sullen, aggravated & sleep-deprived. No, I don’t have a newborn baby that I must care for, instead my body decided to birth the mother of all rashes all over my skin parts. That’s right… I’ve got it:

Poison Ivy.

And it’s EV-ERY-WHERE.

*****

I want to die.

-No. That’s not quite it.

I want to kill myself.

-Hmmm… close, but still, that sentiment isn’t totally fitting.

Ok, got it…

I want the rip the flesh from my body, soak it in acid & bleach, scald it in boiling water, pass it through an industrial strength blow dryer and have it re-attached all while I am under heavy sedation so I can catch up on the COUNTLESS hours I’ve not slept ever since Mount St. Hellish erupted all over my oh-so sensitive limbs.

What probably sucks more than the itching and discomfort and lack of sleep at night is the fact that I have no one but myself to blame for this debacle.

Am I unreasonably susceptible to toxic weeds with poison oils? Why yes, yes, I am.

Have I, in the past, contracted said poison oils simply by washing the clothes of another who came in contact with the plant, although I had not? Damn right I have.

As a child, did I come down with multiple horrific cases of ivy poisoning during summer months, so so SO so bad that I once got it inside my eye, causing my lid to swell to the approximate size of a golf ball, forcing me to spend the following days trying to slide a thin layer of tissue between my swollen lids to collect my miserable, unjustly afflicted, childhood tears? This scenario, sadly, is also all too true.

So then why, when warned of poison leaves in the area, did I not flee? Why did I not wave my middle finger in the general direction of my offenders instead of waving the wand of a weed-killing spray in their face. That same blasted wand that literally managed to blast the irritating oils of its plant host back onto my body and clothing?

Because I am an idiot and an asshole.

At least that’s all I’ve been able to come up with.

*****

Do you want to know an interesting fact that I read about poisonous plants? One of the WORST things you can do is to spray them with weed-killer for the exact reason I mentioned above. It causes teeny-tiny offensive poison particles to become airborne, and for those of us with extreme cases of what I like to call “new-born dermatitis” (Do you get hives from moderate alcohol consumption while sitting in the sun? What about from applying certain types of sun block mixed with chlorinated pool water? Then this is you and your life if screwed…) you are risking not only spraying vicious oils all over your skin but you may also end up ingesting them, thus causing a shit storm of shit you do not want to deal with. Trust.

The worst thing about this particular instance is the fact that I didn’t even know I had poison ivy until about 3 days after it first reared its ugly pimpled head. It wasn’t until I awoke one night last week attempting to saw off my own leg with my ragged fingernails that I realized that what I assumed were above average sized mosquito bites were in fact, much much worse.

The next day I noticed a rash had begun to form and spread and those once large circular “mosquito bite” sized blobs on my legs had begun to transform themselves into things that looked more like red sand tropical islands rather than innocuous rosy-red orbs.

It wasn’t until this past Friday night (mind you I contracted the “sickness” on the previous Sunday afternoon) that I realized I had not only entered my home that Sunday, while covered in the offending oil, sat on the couch (which seconds as our bed), touched numerous household items and the cat, before I realized that I was also sleeping on the same sheets since that day. The same sheets that I’d been rolling around in for the entire week wondering why this shit was spreading all over my body like wildfire.

Needless to say… it was too late. A week since I first noticed the rash I am still accumulating new patches of discomfort. I have washed my sheets & any and all associated materials I may or may not have (can’t risk it) touched since the incident twice over now and I am on my way to get a shot of steroids from my doctor because I have left myself with no other options.

The bee and I have barely said a word to each other in days, mostly due to the fact that my emotional range is either that of a crazed, hypersensitive crying lunatic, weeping at the sign of a new blister or bump or that of an aloof, angry madwoman whose main purpose in life is now to eradicate all toxins from my living space.

*****

I’ve seen a doctor, received a shot of cortisone in my arm and am currently taking steroids despite the fact that I was always told they give men breasts and women mustaches. This was a risk I was mostly willing to take and since I already have both breasts and a mustache. I think I can say I’ve won this round.

*****

It is now a day after the doctor and the welts have begun to subside but more than that my state of mind is slightly more balanced than it had been. To put things into perspective I have included photographic evidence from the day I first noticed the bumps arise:

I sent this photo in a text to the bee with the light-hearted comment that my “bug bites” resembled two giant nipples. HAHAHA!

That joke proved even less funny after my leg started to look like this:

if possible, please try to ignore the unshaven-ness of my leg. it’s kind of hard to drag a razor over your skin when your legs are covered in festering sores.

In short…

Happy 4th! Stay safe, have fun, and stay the fuck inside.

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Pocketful of Meat

Here is a prime example of just how fucking demented I can be while out in public alone:

The other day I went to the deli to buy cold cuts.

You know how some deli workers will present you with a sample of your order and ask if it’s sliced to the thickness of your liking?

Turns out if you plan on ordering a variety of different items and the deli worker offers you a slice of each and you also end up asking him to slice a few items thinner than he first presented you with, and he hands over that sample to you as well, you will end up with a giant mound of meats and cheeses in your hand that you can either jam into your mouth despite having had your fill 2 slices ago and potentially choke on or you can literally sweat it out in your palm…

After gratefully devouring a slice of swiss cheese, roasted chicken, oven gold turkey and a too thick slice of provolone offered, I found myself accumulating more meat than I’ve ever wanted in my hand at one time.

It’s at this point that I began to panic.

I couldn’t find a napkin to stuff all the extraneous meat stuffs into and there wasn’t a trashcan in sight. There was no chance I was going to tell the kind and generous delicatessen worker to take back the slices he had previously offered and dispose of them for me.

And although I’m pretty sure he should have known to cut me off after the 4th or 5th slice, the ball was nonetheless in my court and I did nothing to dissuade him from keepin’ that ol’ meat train a-comin’…

So, I did what any truly brilliant/desperate/cold cut-crazy person in my position would do when faced with the dilemma of man-handling more than one can manage:

I folded up the second slice of provolone, a slice of honey maple ham and a slice of salami (why am i buying this much meat in the first place?) into a misshapen triangle of delicatessen freebies and jammed them into my jacket pocket.

When I got back home I removed the wad from my pocket and threw it to the woods in the hope that a baby deer or a scrawny fox might sniff them out for a late lunch but it failed to change the fact that I managed to walk out of a busy, local establishment with a quarter pound of balled up meat and cheese in my pocket instead of just telling the guy behind the counter: NO.

I believe the truth behind all this madness is simply that, if given the choice, I will almost exclusively choose the more embarrassing option.

*****

It has also come to my attention that I take 18,000 years to complete any one project. I’ve been “trying” to cook lately. It has (surprisingly) been mostly successful. That is to say that the tacos and tater-tot casseroles that I’ve spent far too much time on made have been downright masterful…or something.

I baked cupcakes tonight. From scratch. This was, by and large, a daunting task and one I’ve never even come close to attempting on my own before. Before tonight I wasn’t even sure I knew how to whisk things correctly. After tonight, I’m confident that I don’t.

I only managed to lose control of the whisk and fling melted butter and egg on myself and the side of the mixer once but it also took me almost 15 minutes to set up the mixer in the first place so maybe I shouldn’t be so proud so soon…

Also…

It took me, from first mix to final icing, over 4 hours to complete 12 cupcakes. I think the people on Cupcake Wars have 2 hours to make a thousand so I guess that kills any thought of my going into the competitive baking arena anytime soon.

The point is: cupcakes were made and it was an adventure.

A long, exhausting adventure full of expletives muttered at myself and a plethora of inanimate objects mostly labeled “Kitchen Aid”. An adventure that has now led me towards the greater pursuit and fervent study of whether or not Shiraz is considered a “dessert wine” and if I eat all 12 cupcakes is it OK to wash them down with an entire bottle?

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An Outside Opinion

the bee: I think you need to get out of the house more. It’s good for you. On the inside and out.

me: (peeks face out from behind open refrigerator door) I get out of the house (SNAP! *crunch*crunch*crunch*) …sometimes.

b: I mean somewhere besides the supermarket or the library.

m: (half-chewed orange substance sprays from mouth and freckles fridge door handle and shirtsleeve) Ai THIK yer fergaeg…

b: No…

Going to the drive-thru at the bank doesn’t count as “getting out”. Not really, anyway.

m: (uses open fridge door as make-shift ballet barre; *plié* *ronds de jambe* *plié* *relevé* *plié* *ronds de jambe* *plié* *développé* !!!)

I was going to say “the mayonnaise”. You’re forgetting the amount of mayonnaise that we consume in this house. I don’t think it’s fair to discredit my trips to the supermarket. I need to restock, like, bi-monthly.

If bi-monthly means what I think it means, which is to say I don’t know what it means and ANYWAY, where else am I SUPPOSED to go? (SNAP! *crunch*crunch*crunch*)

b: I dunno… ANYWHERE. Just go for a drive, get lost, have adventures, have FUN!

m: Do you have any idea how depressing that sounds? (waves a baby carrot in the air to emphasize the enormity of the issue) Who the hell wants to be out in public ALONE? It’s humiliating. The last time you told me I should go to the park because it was a beautiful day I did and it was a complete disaster. (SNAP! CRUNCH.)

b: Don’t you think calling it a “disaster” is a bit dramatic?

m: Ummm, NO… (baby carrot now inches from the nose of the offending conversationalist; half-chewed orange substance airborne and within range to fleck the shirtsleeves of others)

…I peeled off my cinch waisted pants and forced my hair into something resembling a trampled beaver’s den, though a thoughtfully maintained one, all so I could end up sweaty and looking pathetic while trying to find someplace isolated to sit and read my book.

Being amongst all those smiley, happy couples and families was honestly the most alone I’ve ever felt…

(dispiritedly grande pliés into the cold embrace of the refrigerator; crumples on the floor nestled between the ketchup and cold cuts where her mind transports us through a vast and trippy memory telescope/photo album type-thingy into… the recent past)

*****

I wandered aimlessly…

I took some pictures…

Lonely, DEPRESSING pictures…

I encountered 2 girls with a dog who happened to be hanging out in a shady place by the path I was on and I was pretty sure they were staring at me and laughing so I took this picture, which isn’t really of anything but it saved me from having to look them in the eyes while being publicly ridiculed…

Then I ended up getting kind of lost…

Honestly though, this rendezvous with desolation was the most welcoming moment the afternoon had offered so far…

So I decided to take a load off and just relax. I started messing with the camera to see if I could remember how to use all the different functions.

I couldn’t…

So I took a few not so great pictures…

Until…

Ahhh… That’s better…

I found some red in a tangle of green and brown…

A weeping, gnarled monster reaching skyward from its grave….

And not far from there, finally, a nice comfortable place to sit and read my book…

*****

b: How utterly… nightmarish.

m: I know. It really was.

But do you know the worst part about going out? What I would consider the ultimate in human degradation?

b: Ummmm…

Being harrassed by religious fanatics?

Feely airport security guards?

Not being able to cool yourself while simultaneously abusing precious home energy resources?

m: Close. But no.

b: Then what?

m: Eating in public. (closes fridge door and pirouettes out of the room)

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Like a vampire except really just the bit about being pale and aged.

My doctor recently did some blood work for me and told me that I am substantially vitamin D deficient. This is mostly pathetic considering you really only need semi-regular exposure to the sun to remain within the 30-80 “normal” range.

Mine is 15.

Admittedly I’m not a big sun worshipper. I like a sunny day and I appreciate warmth but when it comes to exposing my porcine flesh to the outside world only dressed in a tank top and shorts, I’d just as much stay indoors in some nice climate controlled room wearing full coverage clothing because the AC makes the room I’m in just a *touch* on the cold side.

I don’t enjoy laying on the beach for two reasons: I hate being hot and I also hate sand. I’m terrified I might contract skin cancer from UV exposure, or whatever it is in the sun that causes cancer. Save from the time I was born to around the age of 7 (a.k.a. a time when I knew no better) I have had no reasonable desire to bake myself naked on a beach towel for a few hours under an unforgiving sun.

Somewhere down the line I convinced myself that any prolonged sun exposure was going to cause not only skin cancer but (god forbid!) premature aging so now I just don’t go out and if I do I’m slathered in an SPF anywhere between a 50 to an 80. This practice has left me so translucently pale that on a cloudy day you are bound to hear me before you actually see me.

Given the day and age we live in and the fact that I’m both Italian and from New Jersey, it is virtually unheard of for someone like me to exist in our society. I realize that my appearance is an embarrassment to this culture of tanned, fun-seeking, willfully unemployable miscreants and I’m basically OK with that.

I’ve come to terms with the fact that, although still technically a 20-something, I’ve felt more like a septuagenarian in terms of my curmudgeonly ways. I don’t like “going out” and I generally dislike “doing things” if it involves leaving the house after 7PM. This sort of paints a picture of me a few small steps away from being an invalid which would not be entirely inaccurate depending on the day.

I also frequently complain about “kids”. How they’re overly “self-involved”, “entitled” and “tech-obsessed”. Phrases like “Why I aughta!” (with exasperated fist-shake) and “Get a job!” frequently cross my mind but then I realize they’re all too busy sex-texting each other’s SpaceBook pages.

So…  why bother?

But, unless I’m alright with being pork-belly white and potentially, very ill in the long run… (zoinks!) I need to start taking care of myself. It’s just funny how you think you’ve got one part of your life sorted out; you eat better, exercise regularly and you find out that you’ve still been overlooking basic things like making the time to leave your darkened basement of a life for a little time with the living every now and again.

Sheesh!

*****

I thought I might include a completely un-retouched photograph of myself in case I decide to get serious and chart my progress back to health via my skin tone:

For instance, it might seem unclear from the photo but the shirt I’m wearing is actually white. That’s just the effect my ghostly pallor has on everything. Also, I’m noticing now that the “squat” position I’m assuming in this image is far from flattering.

Let’s ignore that part entirely…

Thanks.

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Fears

After leaving my job a few months ago I thought I would begin a new chapter in my life by filling my days with some much-needed relaxation and allowing myself the time to re-focus creatively and personally.

Instead I’ve been most successful at giving myself an endless array of shit for not being more artistically productive or inspired on a daily basis which makes for what I believe to be some pretty serious irony:

Fear #1

I will never be successful. At anything.

Much like my numerous failed attempts to learn to the guitar/piano/drums beyond plucking strings, poking keys, or banging on cymbals, I cannot seem to move past the point of frustration at figuring out new things which might allow me to find peace in being creative and possibly, somewhere down the line, entrepreneurial:

Fear #2

I will never finish anything that I start.

When I recently mentioned to the bee that I thought I might like to work in a library, he reminded me that most library work is on a volunteer-only basis:

Fear #3

Any and all discernible life-skills I have are at once impractical and completely useless when trying to support yourself financially.

Perhaps it’s because I stopped taking my  meds or the fact that I’ve been unemployed for a while that’s causing a momentous level of despair to creep into my life.

Either way, it seems my ability to differentiate between a justifiable cause for fear or worry against something which is completely fabricated by my damaged brain has never been worse.

But… at least I’m taking it all in stride:

Yep. Totally under control.

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I can cook. Just not very well.

me: Oh, thank GOD you’re here.

the bee: What happened?

m: I think I may have ruined the chicken.

b: What makes you say that?

m: I’m not sure if I cooked it long enough.

b: How long did you cook it for?

m: About 15 minutes, but it feels raw to me.

b: Should we really be feeling it?

m: I think so.

b: Well, when you cut it open is the chicken pink or is it white inside?

m: It’s white but I tried some and it felt like raw in my throat.

b: *raises a concerned and skeptical eyebrow*

m: Should it be white on the outside too? Because it doesn’t look very appetizing…

b: Steff, it’s fine. It looks exactly the same as when I cook the chicken.

m: You’re just saying that. I won’t believe you til you try it.

b: Ok. (Takes bite and chews for an inordinate amount of time to eat a reasonably sized piece of chicken)

*gulps* It’s… good.

m: *waves arms in a defeated and hysterical manner* Oh my GOD! Somehow I’ve managed to make it both raw and overcooked. I’ve ruined dinner! It’s a disaster.

and poison!

b: You just need to relax. This is not a disaster and it’s not poison. It’s chicken.

m: *mumbles under breath* poison chicken…

b: *sideways glance*

m: Well?

b: Maybe…

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Filed under (me), home, just a thought..., the bee

A Day in the Life

When I decided to leave my job I figured it would give me an overwhelming amount of free time to write and take pictures and just be generally creative. I thought at this point I would have created so much amazlingness that I would need to tell myself to slow the hell down and just relax already. Instead I find myself unable to wake before 10 and then frantically running around all day in the hopes that I can get something worthwhile accomplished. Most days lots gets done, just nothing worth mentioning.

Or IS it?

Since I’m unable to come up with anything original, I’ll just give you a basic rundown of a day in the life:

12:37 AM – Wake up on the couch with intense neck pain after dozing off while watching something uninteresting on the TiVO (probably Chuck since I don’t find any humor on that show save for Morgan but the bee begs to differ because he just loves it. choose your battles wisely, people.)

12:38-12:41 AM – Attempt to rouse a sleeping bee from the sofa, at first with sweetness and love, whispering things like “Hey, sleepy. It’s late, let’s go to bed, OK?”. When that inevitably doesn’t work and I’ve paced the room for the next few minutes after multiple futile attempts to wake his comatose ass it becomes “FINE! I’m going to bed, with or without you. You can sleep out here, ALONE, where it’s scary and there’s no one to protect you. Good luck.” Within moments a groggy bee will rise as late-night threats of impending fear and abandonment will almost always work in your favor.

4:23 AM – Wake to the sounds of “A-BANG-A-BANG-A-BANG” coming from the weird, dwarf-sized, pseudo-closet underneath our bed where the cat has decided for the umpteenth time to try to see if he can exit through a set of unnecessary double doors that lead only to a wall. Directly under our heads. Where we sleep at night.

This is then followed by the “SCRITCH-A-SCRITCH-A-SCRITCH” when the stinker realizes that his first tactic wasn’t completely fortuitous so he’s moved to the set of drawers built into our weird elevated bunk bed in the hopes that THIS will wake us up so we can git on down thar and play with his fuzzy little monkey butt.

4:24-5:05 AM – Unsuccessfully bargain with a cat, pleading for a decent nights sleep and some peace and quiet if he would only just let us have it: “Just two more hours, buddy. Then we play with flying string-feather alllllll day, OK?” which quickly turns into “WOULD YOU SHUT UP YOU HELL SPAWN JUST BE QUIET GODDAMN IT I’M LOSING MY MIND YOU JERK I SWEAR TO GOD I’M GONNA KIL…” until, finally, the cat gets bored with this charade and resumes sleeping peacefully wherever it is he wants to sleep and we are forced to separate (as it seems to be the ONLY way he’ll ever give us peace), one of us staying in the bed while the other mans the pull-out in the living room where we both end up passing out miserable and overflowing with rage.

Let me just say: It’s awesome.

VS.

note the slight shift in location and the subtle difference in eyelid presentation in both photos. i mention this because these things matter little. in either instance he is ready to take your sleep schedule and make it his bitch.

7:35-8:05 AM – I half-wake to the sounds of the bee getting ready for his day at the office. I remain barely fazed by his knocking about the house  and only regain consciousness again briefly as he stops to give me a kiss goodbye before he leaves the house.

I’m not gonna lie. I’m a huge fan of that part.

9:56 AM – I awake to the sound of “Meeeeeeer, meeeeer” and a little orange face staring up at me from the floor telling me to get the hell up already because he’s hungry, so let’s get this party started. This is closely followed by the “Bzzzzzzp, bzzzzzzp” of my phone which is the bee texting me to get the hell up already because he’s bored, so let’s get this party started.

10:02 – approx 1:30 PM – I begin frantically running about the house in attempt to get things done. I start by putting the kettle on for tea and feeding the cat while I work on straightening up the house because, for whatever reason, collectively we manage to make a mess of things on a daily basis so much so that each morning I have to turn the bed back into a couch or rearrange furniture that was moved to provide sufficient space for the flying string-feather obstacle course or, you know, because I am highly OCD and I just have to. During this time I will also drink my tea, eat my breakfast and manage to make myself feel sub par for not having accomplished more in the way of actual “work” all while sitting in the same dirty pajamas that I’ve worn all week. (that last part is more statement of fact than complaint because I LOVES me the time in my dirty ‘jams)

1:31-4:12 PM – Commence freaking out because it’s almost 2:00 and that’s when the bee goes on lunch which means he’s gonna call me and ask what I’m doing. Also, because technically I think I’m supposed to eat again but that’s so much work and I really don’t have the motivation but I better do it anyway because otherwise I’ll get yelled at (see: the bee). It’s around this time that I realize that I still haven’t managed to do the dishes from the night before and it never ceases to amaze me that no matter what the meal and regardless that it’s just the two of us we still have a towering mound of crap in the sink on a daily basis to deal with.

Also? I should probably shower. It’s been a while. Oh yeah, and the teeth. Still haven’t brushed the teeth.

4:15 PM – Decide that just brushing the teeth and putting on real clothes should be good enough in the way of grooming for the day. Attempt to go online and read-up on blogs and maybe get some writing done. This never happens. Instead I find that Don’t Tell Mom The Babysitter’s Dead is on Cinemax for the 11th time this week so I should probably watch it again because I’M RIGHT ON TOP OF THAT ROSE.

5:30 PM – The bee arrives home and any prospect of writing goes out the window. I’m totally fine with this. At least I will be until tomorrow morning (see: 1:35-4:12 PM) when I’ll just make myself feel guilty for being unproductive again. We catch up on the day’s happenings and the bee complains about some shitty thing that happened at his shitty job and I nod and roll my eyes because I totally get it and then I tell him about how fucking crazy MY new boss is. And he’ll do the same because he knows the deal with that too.

6:45 PM – We decide that we should probably start to think about what it is we might want to eat for dinner. Considering the time we look in the fridge to realize we only have 2 week old baked beans and some white-slime coated hot dogs and since it’s too late to defrost anything “real” in the freezer we realize we need to choose from the only two options left: Wendy’s or McDonald’s. Lately Wendy’s wins out since they have those new salads. You know the one’s with the nuts and cheese and berries? Yep, tooooootally love those. Have I mentioned I should be in sales?

7:55 – 10:15 PM – Return from Wendy’s and begin scarfing down dinner while watching hours of mind-numbing television programming. Remember all the things I had wanted to do during the day but didn’t and then realize that I’m just going to have to do all those things TOMORROW and I begin to panic. I don’t handle stress well. At all. So instead of beginning to relax and enjoy my time with my husband in a low-key laid-back scenario I start to obsess and voice my worry about all my shortcomings and past failures as a human. This makes for really shitty T.V. viewing. Thank god for TiVo. Again: sales?

10:30-ish – Regardless of what is happening, I begin to lose my ability to maintain consciousness. We could be in the middle of playing Dance Dance Revolution and the indefatigable need to just “go lay down for a minute” would sweep over me and that, my friends, is usually where I completely check-out. Sometimes I can pretend like I’m still with it enough to carry on a conversation or, at the very least, add commentary to something seen on T.V. but the truth is, anything after 10:45 for me is 100% auto-pilot which brings us right back to where we started.

Basically I’m just a manic-depressive, obsessive-compulsive, slightly neurotic, unemployed, over-sleeper with less than stellar hygiene, who loves her freak-show of a cat even though he’s *this close* to getting thrown out a window if he wakes her up again with his one-man-band percussive late-night music hour, with a very unhealthy relationship with fast food who really needs to get dressed and put on some make-up. Like now. It’s either that or cover up this pimple with my finger forever.

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The Union, Forever

This Sunday, (me) and the bee get married. 

We’re both incredibly excited and more than a little relieved, mainly because after Sunday we can finally take a deep breath and relax a bit before our celebratory marriage party, held 2 weeks after that. 

The other day we both confided in each other how we *kind of* couldn’t wait for it all to be over so things can go back to normal. I’ve never planned a wedding before and I’m sure it’s a different experience for everyone, but for me, aside from being a fun and exciting opportunity to flaunt my creative feathers, it has been EXHAUSTING

The last few months have been a blur of planning and scheduling and arranging and procuring. I can honestly say I will be very grateful when we can look back on this with a smile because all our hard work really paid off but even more so because I’ll be looking back. Hopefully from the comforts of my living room. With no future plans other than: What poor excuse for a meal will I be stuffing my face with this evening? 

I thought I’d share some photos we took back in April when we brought our lomo-cams out with us to the park we inevitably chose as our ceremony locale. We went back there this past weekend to scout out the perfect spot. Instead, we found MULTIPLE places we think we might want to use for such a momentous occasion. 

We figure it’ll all sort itself out that day. Plus, everything else about our wedding plans have been last-minute so why start doing things any differently now! 

a path through the park*

a view of the lake **

a lonely daffodil on the fence*

me, on a park bench overlooking a potential location for our vow exchange**

*taken by (me) with a Holga fitted w/ a fish eye lens 

**taken by the bee with a Diana F+ fitted w/ an instant back (comes out like a Polaroid, only smaller)

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Where Dreams Go To Die

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I B Freakin’

A few months ago I wrote about how I was still on the fence about going to BlogHer ’10. Long story short, I spent so much time straddling that damn thing that I missed my chance completely. Early bird registration came and went and then so did all the regular priced tickets. I figured it just wasn’t meant to be and even though I signed myself up for their waiting list I was secretly happy that I wouldn’t have to shell out a few hundo for the event.

As more time passed I started to think maybe my saving myself the money hadn’t been worth all that I would miss at the conference. As much as I’d like to envision myself as a Dooce or a Bloggess in 10 years time, I don’t know the first thing about blogging for bucks or even blogging all that well, so if I ever wanted to chase that dream, this was my chance.

As they often do, the fates aligned and I got my chance at BlogHer redemption. Reading through blogs (as I am wont to do during the work day) I came across a post that Mayopie wrote, offering up his 2-day conference pass that he no longer needed. Maybe BlogHer ’10 WAS meant to be after all! After a few days of back and forth emails the pass was mine and I was one step closer to world domination.

Given all that…

Can somebody please tell me why the reality of all this makes me want to upchuck my lunch?!

BlogHer is about 3 weeks away but already I feel like I’m going to be my normal awkward, anti-social self who will wish she could turn around and go home the minute she steps into the Hilton/find the darkest loneliest corner to hide in until it’s all over and OH GOD! What if somebody tries to talk to me?! Yaaaaaaaaaaaaghhhhhhh! but, Oh NO! What if NOBODY talks to me?!!! Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh…

How big of a mistake have I made by signing on for this thing?

I just read through the BlogHer ’10 “Checklist” of things to bring and things to do in preparation and let me tell you, it’s not making me feel any more relaxed. Especially the part about bringing a “Business card with your blog’s URL and/or Twitter handle”.

BUSINESS CARD?!

Why didn’t I think of this sooner?

Ugh.

I read a post that Schmutzie wrote on tips to consider when creating your business card which was actually quite informative but I’m at an impasse: what the hell kind logo do I create for my card when I can’t even decide what kind of blog it is that I have here?

Am I a personal blogger?

Yeah, kind of. I talk about my life to an extent but I don’t really get into grittier topics for good reason (Hi there, Mom! Dad! Gramm!) and I do hold a lot back that I would most definitely share if I were slightly more anonymous. I’ve got some killer stories that will forever stay on the shelf because some of the people involved actually read this blog and I’m not in the business of hurting anyone’s feelings or alienating the few friends I have left.

Am I a humor blogger?

Eh… maybe. SOMETIMES. Though I think some of my funniest stuff is often times unintentional.

Good thing? Bad thing? You tell me…

Am I a photo blogger?

On occasion. I like to take pictures and all but are there people out there that DON’T? Doesn’t that kind of make everyone a photographer? That’s a lot of competition, yo. How the hell do you make yourself stand out with that?!

I dunno. Maybe I’m over-analyzing all this and intensifying the negative (that is what I do best, after all) but in the year or so since I started blogging, I have not found a way to appropriately “brand” myself. Maybe it’s because I hate labels and trying to fit things into neat little compartmentalized categories even though I will still try to do it because of my own obsessive need for order.

Have I mentioned that being me is AWESOME?

The more I read about successful bloggers the more I hear that one of the biggest pieces to completing that puzzle is to find your unique niche or brand so you will stand apart from the rest. But what if you can’t? Does that determine imminent failure from the start?

I’d really love to hear some feedback on this subject. Are YOU going to BlogHer this year? Have you ever attended a BlogHer or like-minded conference? Are my biggest fears irrational at best or am I totally in the right for freaking the fuck out over this thing?

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