a catch-up post: stuff i bought and #reverb10, December 9 - 12

Holy crap. Here's stuff I bought ages ago. For my mom's birthday, caramel apples from DaisyandDelilah:

To be honest, the caramel was hard instead of tacky like I was expecting, so it was kind of a disappointment. However, the service was good, and there were 4 different apples: regular caramel, caramel with peanuts, bourbon caramel, and dark chocolate with sea salt. I couldn't say no.

Two dresses from Target, because they were on clearance. I was really surprised there were so many left. Why wouldn't you buy these?

Generic functional underwear (I am really proud of myself, you guys) from macy's, two longsleeve tees from Target, and two pairs of socks from Target.

Above, Dr. Bronner's lip balm from Target. Neutrogena lip balm and gloss-thing from Walgreen's. (I like greasy lip balm, okay?) And an e.l.f. eyeliner. (The pewter's not that vivid, but it's beautiful how soft it is, and the built-in sharpener is perfect.)

Some very late #reverb10 prompts after the jump.

PROMPT FOR DECEMBER 9, 2010: Party. What social gathering rocked your socks off in 2010? Describe the people, music, food, drink, clothes, shenanigans.

The one where I am betrayed by someone I trusted with my life. (The one where I find out that my tutor wasn’t actually going to have dinner with my TA, which means that my tutor lied in an attempt to get me to spend time with him, so it’s a really good thing I didn’t say yes to join him.)

The one where I use my Krav Maga skills to fend off a would-be sexual predator. (The one where some dude named Adam touches my leg too much while I sit on Memorial Glade not playing Frisbee, and I attempt to talk about castrating bulls to suggest that maybe I don’t like his wandering hands.)

The one where we learn how to joust. (The one where we flip chopsticks around our fingers without poking each other’s eyes out. Or in.)

The one where a cute French boy asks if I want to go up to see his room. (The one where a cute French boy lets us extend our class get-together into the wee hours of the morning by inviting us all over to his dorm, which happens to be the one where I lived my freshman year.)

The one where Lady Gaga serenades me with an acoustic rendition of “Monster.” (The one where I listen to someone who can play by ear play that song from Amélie while listening to it, with only about ten seconds’ delay.)

The one where my pride comes crashing down like a game of Jenga. (The one where my team gets owned in Pictionary and I am told to suck it.)

The one where I am accused of being a homewrecker. (The one where I am accused of making puppy dog eyes at my lecturer. For the record, I was. I wanted to play Pictionary.)

The one where I manage not to vomit after winning a statewide donut-eating contest. (The one where I want to throw up after eating King Pin donut holes at 2 AM.)

The one where I betray my country. (The one where my facial expressions make it too obvious that both my TA and lab partner have wandered off into the dark together and stopped answering their phones.)


PROMPT FOR DECEMBER 10, 2010: Wisdom. What was the wisest decision you made this year, and how did it play out?

I think this is cheating.

In January, I dropped money on my first pair of leather boots and confidently wore the shit out of them, knowing that they wouldn't fall apart.

In February, I started Write One Leaf as a pet project without anticipating that it would be such an important personal endeavor.

In March, I performed some symbolic actions to represent my decision to jump off my metaphorical cliff and prepare to fail summer classes for a major I was hesitant about.

In April, I tried pin curls and felt okay about how I looked for the first time in the nine or so months since I started growing out my pixie cut.

In May, I deleted my Facebook account.

In June, I chose my computer science login to be "bj" because it was memorable, like I hoped I would be.

In July, I chose to finish my summer classes instead of running away from them just because I didn't like the feeling of failure.

In August, I decided to accept failing on a regular basis and continue doing computer science in the fall.

In September, I skipped sleep and a shower so I could see Sunshine, Aaron, and Victoria. Some people are like coffee, the way they leave you energized but heading for a crash. But those three are like... like hot chocolate.

In October, I decided to stop doing computer science.

In November, I started Write One Leaf again.

In December, I decided to stop spending my energy on things I don't really care about.


NOTE: Awkwardly enough, I wrote two responses for this prompt because I forgot I had saved the first one somewhere. Here's the second response. Sorry.


In 2010, I threw myself off the edge of a few cliffs, with the confidence that either there would be something to catch me or I would grow wings on the way down.

I tentatively embraced computer science for ten months before it became clear to both parties involved that the promise of financial stability is a poor foundation for relationship compatibility, even if we liked each other a lot. Like is not love, and being unwilling to slog through the hard times together is not love, and crying yourself to sleep thinking you aren’t good enough is not love, and neither is being lonely in a room full of friends or knowing what your future together looks like and panicking. I jumped from my nest of cozy, coast-y academic success and plummeted into an abyss of apathy and tears, which made me hesitate to call this The Right Decision. Nothing caught me on the way down, though a few people tried, and for that I am grateful. But I didn’t grow wings either. I am pretty sure this is because it was Not How The Good Lord Intended For Me To Go, but I’m glad to have tried it. And now I know.

I started writing earnestly ten months ago, something I hadn’t done in years, like a wound I had smothered in bandages and was letting breathe again. I can’t tell if I’m good enough. I must not be, because nobody’s copied or criticized me yet. But I like to think that I am growing wings on the way down, and as soon as I decide what enormous, ambitious project to start, I will know if I can fly.

And I let go of computer science and decided to go forth and be screwed with a linguistics degree. I doubt anyone will catch me this time. I doubt anyone will even try, so I am building my wings on the way down because I trust my mind more than I trust my body to erupt into feathers.

That reminds me – I need to watch Black Swan.


PROMPT FOR DECEMBER 11, 2010: 11 Things. What are 11 things your life doesn't need in 2011? How will you go about eliminating them? How will getting rid of these 11 things change your life?
  1. Being a chronic oversharer, in real life and online. Time to stop throwing up on people and the internet. My personal diary looks pretty forlorn these days, so I’ll squirrel things away in there instead and keep those for myself.

  2. Fear of failure. My solution: fake it. And remember that I’m going to die, and so will everyone I love.

  3. Having a maximalist wardrobe, full of clothes I don’t like, clothes that don’t fit, clothes that can only be worn one way, and clothes I can’t figure out how to wear. I’ll throw anything with nice enough fabric into my to-be-fixed/sewing-failures pile to work on my hand-sewing and altering skills. Everything else gets donated. My general intention is for my 2011 wardrobe to consist of utilitarian items of neutral clothing, with punchy accent colors (jewel tones!) and excessories.

  4. Increasing my wardrobe with fake investment items, dry-clean only clothes, uncomfortable functionless underwear (I understand that most functionless underwear is not meant to be worn for long, but COME ON, if wearing it under a regular outfit is supposed to be my little secret, it could at least not ride up and necessitate public wedgie picking), and All The Cool Kids AKA Bloggers Are Doing It items (aka clogs and any other remotely impractical shoes). On that note, CAN ADD: White Doc Martens (the half-calf kind, perhaps with hot pink laces) for stomping around, knee high socks (I don’t think I will ever be fully comfortable in thigh highs), t-shirts (yes, seriously), and vintage costume jewelry (and things of that ilk).

  5. Unstructured internet surfing time. I’ll structure it. Frankly, I don’t need to read any more advice on how to please my nonexistent man, or how to make him my bitch, or how to meet his parents. I don’t want to watch any more cat videos or see any more innovative business card designs because I am not a cat person or a graphic designer. I am cutting the stuff I don’t care about.

  6. Sitting on my butt, because chub is almost never fun, unless you’re that guy on Anoncon who posted about grabbing chub as a substitute for boobs if a girl has almost nothing to hold on to otherwise. And because all this sitting around is probably the reason for these mysterious chest pains and lightheadedness and heavy periods and migraines. I’m not sure how this is going to work, because I’m not a gym kind of person… Maybe vigorous housework and studying on campus. Ew, studying on campus. At least it would force me to haul myself out of the apartment.

  7. Comparing myself to others, in real life and online. Nobody I’ve encountered has the same story as mine, so it makes no sense to make comparisons. I’m declaring that it’s okay to use other people as benchmarks, and that structured competition is okay, but it is not okay to wonder why I’m not as successful as [superstar of choice].

  8. People I don’t want to spend time with/on/near/around, by practicing The Art of Radical Exclusion. Fewer entries on my expense sheet categorized as “eating out,” which indicates frivolous spending, in exchange for more that say “wellness,” for those people who leave me feeling more energized or thoughtful than when we met. I am cutting you out, naysayers and time-wasters and energy leeches.

  9. Off-day outfits. There is no such thing as an off-day to the casual observer. I refuse to allow such things to exist in my sartorial vocabulary, so anything I glom together should be practical and look cohesive. Possible solution: adopt a uniform.

  10. Going to bed after midnight, which I’ve been trying to remedy for a while, but life keeps getting in the way. I don’t think this is feasible until I have a regular class schedule, though, so I won’t push this until school starts. “Bed by 11, up by 7.”

  11. Awful hair. I’ve had awful hair for more than a year, and now I have mediocre hair. I think it’s time to step it up in 2011. I’m thinking color before anything else. And I’m thinking a Creatures of the Deep color scheme to break in my virgin hair.

PROMPT FOR DECEMBER 12, 2010: Body Integration. This year, when did you feel the most integrated with your body? Did you have a moment where there wasn’t mind and body, but simply a cohesive YOU, alive and present?

I don’t have anything to say about this prompt, so perhaps you should read this one instead:

But that’s cheating, so here is what I want to say: I don’t think of my mind and body as separate. Especially not after that damned CogSci class that told me TIME IS AN ILLUSION and CAUSE AND EFFECT ARE AN ILLUSION and I AM JUST THE SUM OF NEURONS FIRING and GREAT METAPHORS ARE JUST EXTENSIONS OF OUR BODILY UNDERSTANDING OF THE WORLD, SO GREAT LITERATURE IS ALL IN YOUR HEAD.

Now would be an appropriate time to quote Dumbledore.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean it is not real?”

Have I used up enough words yet? Because this prompt sucks. I guess I am acutely aware of my body when I am doing things like inserting tampons, or suffering from a cold, or stepping into a hot shower and watching the grayness withdraw from my toes, but mind is body. (This is a one-way equation, because body is not mind, but mind sure as hell is just as physically-based as body.)

Actually, you know what? I can answer this prompt.

This year, I felt the most integrated with my body that time when I was alive. I did not have a moment where I was not mind and body and simply a cohesive ME, alive and present.

This is probably the worst prompt my mind and body, which are integrated, have come across yet.
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