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[Error: unknown template qotd]Uh.... a big 10-4 there, good buddy. My room was filled with stuffed animals as a kid. Because my dad still lives in the house I grew up in, I think the closet still is. When I was really young, I thought they were alive and talked and did stuff when I was out of the room. I also took special pains to not make others jealous when I was spending a lot of time with a particular stuffed animal.

(Toy Story came out when I was 12, if you're curious. That movie's not the reason I felt that way, though I did identify with that movie a lot. Haha.)

I wouldn't say that I had an absolute favorite. Different times in my life, I was obsessed with different toys. For example, when I had hernia surgery in the second grade, I took my bear Nyla with me. (I remember the nurses put a mask on her and gave her "anesthesia" as well.) Another year for Easter I think, I got a white rabbit in a green velveteen suit that I loved. (I really enjoyed The Velveteen Rabbit as a kid, which is probably more accurately the place I got the idea that toys were real. I think I won the book in a contest at school or the library. That was probably around that time.) A different Christmas, my mom had seen me eyeing a bear that was a chimney sweep named Sooty Sam. (I like Mary Poppins, but I'm not sure why I was so obsessed with this bear in particular. I must have really annoyed them with my screeches about "Sooty Sam!" that year.) When I was a little older, my parents brought back a bear that was wearing a shirt collar and tie. I then became obsessed with finding him a wife. (Not sure why. I was never wedding crazy as a kid. I just didn't want my animals to be without friends and mates.)

And along with all this, there were too many cat stuffed animals to count, some of which I even sewed myself. I'm pretty sure there's a row of them still in the closet at my parents' home because I organized things like that. I could probably still tell you all their life stories. Weirdo.

Do I still enjoy them as an adult? Uh... I don't have a guest room filled with them or anything. I don't talk to Mike with my squishible mini t-rex and the other dinosaurs plus various other characters I own an annoying and unhealthy amount of the time. (Wait, I do. Oops.) Not to mention I bought him a police officer puppet named Cyrus who is a filthy, dirty cop on our honeymoon who likes to talk about drugs and whores and who has since had a barely legal (or illegal?) teen puppet in a cheerleading outfit named Megan join him. (Mike generally voices both of them, though he insists my voice for him is creepier.)

Ah, anyway, I probably have more animals than a self-respecting 32-year-old should have, but there you go.
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[Error: unknown template qotd]Honestly, I didn't have many plans at the start of the year beyond "make it through session." Well, that and don't break any more body parts, but that's a given considering how much my foot still hurts and reminds me when storms are coming.

It's been a big year. It was the start of my first cycle as supervisor handling eight proofreaders during the legislative session, and it wasn't all that easy. I think I did a fairly good job for having replaced my boss, who did the job for ten years plus and saw a lot of changes to her job in that time. I'm not sure if it would have been possible for her to convey to me just how many facets there are to supervising. Some I picked up from watching her, but a lot of it has been a steep learning curve, especially when it comes to relations between my people. I mean, I knew handling relationships between people would be part of the job, but I had no idea how big of a percentage and how unprepared I'd be for some of the scenarios I've run across.

Suffice it to say I'm still learning and will probably never fully figure it out.

It's been stressful and hard on Mike as well, considering he only got to experience session stress from a few states away last time, and I know it can't have been easy to deal with my freaking out about hours and deadlines and everything else that goes along with trying to keep up with the legislature, not to mention our various health problems and just general adjustments that go along with newer marriages and life. So far, he's helped me immensely, and I don't remember how I got through it without him the last two times. He's such a sweetheart, and thought he has his own work issues, I'm pretty sure he's helped me out far more than I've helped him. I'm very lucky he sticks around sometimes.

It's been difficult to see my body deteriorate, though. I've recently become more and more aware of how weak my physique is compared to before I broke my foot. At that point, I was just starting to see the effects of less exercise due to being a newly wed and lazier specimen in general, but now I'm definitely feeling like I'm not where I want to be physically. I'm trying to start my old exercise routine before work again, but it is challenging to get up earlier in the morning not to mention we'll be going back on overtime soon to do codification and I'll have much less time to figure it out then. Sigh.

Work/life balance has become rougher to figure out. I wouldn't trade my life with Mike for anything I had before, but it is hard to see what's coming and plan for the future. Certain days I feel like I have all the time in the world to do what we want to do, and other times I feel my biological clock ticking. I don't know when I'll be ready. I don't know if there's a right time to do anything, really. I do know we'd make anything work, but there are many more unknowns that I can't seem to square with myself right now. I suppose there's no harm in leaving it alone until things settle into whatever they're going to settle into. If there is, I won't know until later anyway.

Most of my life can be summed up in this sentence anyway: "I needn't have worried." This seems to become more true the more I repeat it to myself after particularly stressful events that turned out to not be so bad, so... Why worry about it now? I needn't have worried. It'll work out and be okay.
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I see the Writer's Block involves vaccination. I rolled my eyes and didn't read the whole thing. My brother and Mike's nephew Alex are both on the autism scale, with my brother leaning more toward what was called Asperger's and Alex leaning more toward very high-functioning autism. I entirely doubt this has anything to do with the fact they were vaccinated, especially given the science that has discredited the initial study that suggested vaccination causes autism. I'm also very glad they both were vaccinated because they are some of the best people I know. They are who they are, autism spectrum or not, and they're also still alive. Autism isn't the enemy, and people shouldn't be scared of it. When it comes to diseases that have been already cured for many years, I'm always going to argue for the cure. I've tried to see the other side's point of view, and I just can't. I think it is dangerous and misinformed at best. If this makes me hypocritical about this particular issue, I don't care.

Last weekend was Valentine's day and our three-year anniversary of the day we met. (It seems both longer and shorter than that somehow.) Mike made dinner on Valentine's day, and we had lunch with my parents on our anniversary so we could spend the evening together as well. It was nice that we had the whole weekend off, even if I had to use some of it to do general maintenance, which is what happens when you don't have too many days off in a row-- stuff like get haircuts and clean house and try to recharge while also spend time with people you don't get to see otherwise. It's a bit hard to manage to be honest, but it works, I guess.

More on Valentine's day: Mike got me this dude (Steggy) because I'm weird and obsessed with dinosaurs lately. Also, heh, something sexy. I got him AIDS and a Jesse, also because I'm weird. (AIDS is forever!) Mike made Oysters Rockefeller and tried and failed to make pizza (frozen and thawed pizza dough is the devil), and I made raspberry claufoutis which turned out pretty tasty (even though Mike still cooks way more than I do).

More on the 15th: Mom is doing pretty well. Her grip is coming back, and since she doesn't have a cast and doesn't have to wear a sling, it's not readily apparent she broke her arm. We had a very nice lunch at Tahoe Ridge Winery (a local winery in Minden that is opening a branch very close to our house soon), and afterward, it was fun to do a little infused olive oil tasting (they have a lot of different olive and balsamic oils). Mike ended up getting basil oil and cinnamon pear balsamic for other cooking adventures. After running more errands, we had dinner and watched Punch Drunk Love because our TV was still broken.

Hmm, what else happened this week? Right, a technician came out and fixed the TV. From what Mike said, the screen and motherboard had to be replaced entirely, and when I came home on Tuesday, the screen stayed on for more than five minutes! Just subtract from that the fact that the colors still get inverted from time to time. Ugh. We're pretty sure that the HD cables are to blame now, but if we replace those and are still having problems, we're going to have a serious talk with Directv, mostly because this has been going on for far too long and we have a bit of a background noise addiction that has been highlighted in recent weeks.

However, we encountered a new problem Wednesday that needed a more immediate fix this weekend. I had noticed that our queen-sized bed, which I've had since I was about 14, has been very squeaky lately. The baseboard has been separating from the sideboard, and I've been pushing them back together in the hopes that they won't break.

You know where I'm going with this.

Mike hopped on the bed Wednesday night, and I noticed that the joint was separated more than usual. I made him get off the bed to check out the situation and see if I could strengthen it somehow, but Mike hopped on it again, and the screws gave and tore right out of the wood, banging that corner of the bed onto the floor. I panicked and called my mom, thinking she might have an idea on how to fix it but to no avail. It's done. We dismantled it, put the pieces in the guest room, and have been sleeping on the mattress on the floor since. We're going to try to find a way to donate the headboard and baseboard somewhere, but we have no way to make it work for us again.

That did give us a chance to upgrade to a king bed with a new mattress yesterday, though. ;) The actual buying of the bed and mattress process wasn't as painful as I thought it would be, but trying to find a comforter set proved to be much more complicated than I thought, maybe because I thought Mike wouldn't care at all but surprised me by giving me lots of input and searching several stores then the internet with me until we found what would work.

What's funny about that is he actually just ordered the set we're going to use as I was typing this, so that's a bit of a ridiculous two-day process over what's basically a blanket and pillows. It's pretty though.

Poor Mike. Sorry you've been stuck in domestic hell lately. We ought to be set up by next Saturday hopefully.

Other than that, Mike's in Livermore for the monthly sales meeting. I worked two hours today. This is mostly babbling without a point. The cat is snoring behind me, and my feet are freezing. So it goes.
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I always think April Fool's Day is kind of silly. For the most part, I don't play pranks on other people. If I do, it's usually painfully obvious that it's a prank because I can't hold a poker face to save my life. I also am not all that great at coming up with funny things to do until after the fact. It's all rather ridiculous.

If you want to prank me, it's fairly easy if you catch me before I remember what day it is. Depending on what it is, I can be slightly gullible. I remember hearing that Taco Bell bought the Liberty Bell one year and not realizing it was fake until the news cleared it up. Haha. In years past, I've been confused by various internet gags, but that blew over rather quickly once I visited several pranked sites, as the internet is pretty obsessed with April Fool's Day. I especially like Think Geek's special fake products, even more so because people have liked them so much that they've made a few of them a reality.

However, I mostly associate April Fool's Day with my adoptive grandpa. His birthday is today, and in years past, we've played some pranks on him-- from pretending the power is out (fairly easy to do in a rural area until someone actually tries to turn on something) to not talking and whatever else kids can get away with. Still, my favorite was when we invited him over to our house for cake. My mom presented him with a knife to cut the cake, and when he tried to cut it, he couldn't get very far because we had frosted a brick. Hehe. After a couple of minutes of that, my mom brought out a real cake, and we all had a good laugh.

Anyway, there are my April Fool's Day stories. I realize I usually write a poem a day for April, but I am not going to promise anything given how little I've been posting lately. I'm going to try to post the poems I have backlogged some time soon. Otherwise, we'll see where it goes. I'm just glad it's April. Should be a good month, I think. :)
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So far, I've cleaned the floors and bathroom and walked around outside in the snow. I'm also in the midst of laundry. I also called a few members of my family and talked with Mike (who wants to remind everyone that St. Patrick was Welsh, maybe because he's Welsh, haha). Later I'm going to cook some bockwurst and macaroni and cheese, probably with peas in it to make it fancy, because if I'm going to bastardize a culture's food, it's going to be from the other side of my family.

Ha. Yeah, my name is Fiona, and my dad's from Ireland. Doesn't mean I'm all up on the Americanized version of St. Patrick's day, especially since I find most authentic Irish food pretty horrible (except for pub food and Irish breakfast, so good), but I'm not going to go into that rant because I've made all my points in previous entries. I only wore green today because my favorite sweatshirt is green. I'm not going drinking (and have never had green beer, gross). Not very exciting. It's pretty much a wash at this point. The only thing I wish I had was some corned beef, not because it's Irish (it's not) but because I'd like a nice sandwich with lots of mustard. That sounds pretty good. Oh well. So it goes.
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Hmm. While this hasn't happened recently (not counting the store clerk a few months back who went, "You look like, oh, she was in that movie with the thing and you know? Aw, I can't remember"), I've been compared to two people the most often. I don't think either is particularly spot-on, but whatever.

Audrey Hepburn
I don't see this one, really. Even people who used to compare me to her would be careful to add, "But only when she had short hair!" Her eyes are much bigger and more wide-set than mine, though she did have the same pale skin/dark hair coloring and high cheekbones I do.

Winona Ryder
I think this comparison was more accurate right around the time Girl, Interrupted came out. Again, she and I share the same coloring and fairly sharp features (and it helps that I wore my hair a lot choppier back then), but I'm pretty sure the eyes screw everything up again. However, I'm constantly wearing glasses that make my eyes look very small, so what do I know?

There you have it. My very short list of celebrity doppelgangers.

I have another entry I want to write about synesthesia and this TV program I saw last night (note to self: remember to do that later), but I'm pretty close to being out of energy. No matter when I try to go to bed these days, whether I stay up late on the internet or not, I have trouble getting to sleep then somehow manage to wake up before my alarm goes off even when I have time to sleep in. Not sure why. My brain is chewing on too much, probably. I'm getting more antsy by the day. Hard not to, really. There's just so much to look forward to! GAH!

Oh, calm down. Stop being silly.
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Two (and a half) for one!

1. There's a man out there named Eugene Nunnery, and he's a horrifyingly violent man. Then again, if I was named Eugene Nunnery, I probably would be predisposed toward a life of crime too.

1.5. (When I looked that up, I found out that the Nevada Supreme Court just had its 60,000th case filed. Apparently, 10,000 of these cases have been filed in the last four and a half years!)

2. The chapter on water regulations in the Nevada Administrative Code has algebraic formulas in it concerning the levels of toxic materials in our water (including ammonia, bleh!). Bonus-- I remembered what e stands for in these equations (natural logarithm) even if I don't remember what it's used for or why. Haha.

I like this question because I tend to pick up useless information at my job all the time. It doesn't mean it's all interesting, but it's still kind of funny sometimes. Then again, I find all sorts of things fascinating and amusing, probably not for any mature or normal reason. Case in point, I learned a fair amount about food additives yesterday, but that doesn't really answer the question, does it?

Anyway, I'm glad it's Thursday, even if I did just pay all my bills and take out the trash. I also still don't know what I'm going to do about other things. It's always something. Oh well. Just got to figure it out, I guess.
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Oh, there are so many. At the very top of the list--

A Clamation Christmas

They used to play this every year when I was a kid. Now no one seems to remember it. There are seriously so many bits I love from this, even years later. My mom finally found it on tape a few years ago, and I always think of it this time of year.

I won't name everything, but here are a few others.

A Muppet Christmas Carol

Oh dear. When your whole family is as goofy as mine is, something as silly as muppets usually brings everyone together. It's one of the best versions of "A Christmas Carol" in my not-so-educated opinion.

Charlie Brown Christmas Special

It's the classic. I even referred to the $40 lit Christmas tree I just put together as "Cheap but not a Charlie Brown tree" earlier this evening.


This movie is so lame, but I can't help it. Like I said on facebook, whenever I think of dumb Christmas carols, this comes to mind. (Hillary is in your chair and she won't get out!) Ah, hahaha.

And if we're going to talk Christmas movies, I'll end with mentioning the two that get played over and over and over every year.

A Christmas Story


When we get tired of the marathon on one channel, we switch to the other and then vow never to watch them again... until it happens again the next year.

Okay, I've overdosed on Christmas. Now if only someone would finish wrapping all my gifts and bake my cookies. Oh, right. I'm supposedly an adult. At least there are eleven days left, I guess.
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Come on. You know I was a band nerd.

I play clarinet. I've been playing it since the 8th grade, when I had to switch instruments due to a diagnosis of vertigo. (I have inner ear issues. I'm not sure if the near blackouts I suffer occasionally are from this, low blood pressure, or a combination of both, but it's pretty irritating.) Before that, I played flute for two years. Yeah, I had to stop playing flute because mustering up the air to play it made me even dizzier than I already was. (Did you know that playing the flute takes more air than playing the tuba? There's your useless fact of the day.) Anyway, I played clarinet for the rest of middle and high school, and I've played it off and on since, though not near as much as I used to. I used to be pretty good at it, getting to where I could play a three-octave scale and using size 4 reeds. I even made first chair of honor band my senior year of high school, which meant that I was the best of the clarinet players in our district (and had to awkwardly tune the rest of the honor band before our performance, super). I even tried out for the orchestra when I went to college and they were prepared to offer me a scholarship, but being clumsy and having no experience marching, I had no interest in doing marching band, which was a prerequisite for the scholarship. Oh wells.

Actually, for many years, I was the clarinetist in our school band. Our school was so small (and band was never all that popular) that I was either the only person or one of two people who played clarinet. Then again, I graduated with a class of 13, some of whom I had known since pre-school, so what do you expect, really?

As I've mentioned, I've also played piano. I took piano lessons for a few years as a young child; I picked it up again in high school; but I still don't know it very well because I stopped practicing a long time ago. I do know a few songs by heart, though, including one by Mozart, and I used to drive my second teacher crazy in other ways too. She used to try to teach me by playing the song for me so I would know what it was supposed to sound like. She stopped doing that when she realized I wasn't really looking at the music when I was playing and was focusing on my fingers instead.

I can read music, but I come by the annoying talent of playing by ear naturally, though I'm not nearly as good at it as my father. My dad was a musical prodigy as a kid, and he plays piano by ear. We're not talking simple melodies but Beethoven and other grandiose pieces. He also has perfect pitch, which he passed on to my brother but not to me. Rats. (As an aside, it was also ridiculous as a kid to hear my dad and brother constantly being uncomfortable during performances because someone was inevitably out of tune. They can't help it, but man...) However, several of my band teachers used to tune the rest of the band to me because I was nearly always in tune. One of them claimed I was better than a machine at one point. Also, I once owned a clarinet that everyone else had trouble tuning but I always played in tune. Actually, I'm still not quite sure how to tune my instrument because of that. Haha.

Other instruments I have dabbled with are ukelele, recorder, and bass guitar. I don't really count the first two as instruments I've played, though, because we had to learn them in school. As for bass guitar, I tried to teach it to myself a couple of years ago because I've always been really interested in it (yeah, yeah, shut up), but I lost interest/didn't have time to be serious about it/got lazy/other crap came up. (Well, it helped that my ex loaned me the bass guitar, and the first time we broke up, I had him take the guitar with him. Musicians. What can I say?)

Funny. This has been on my mind a fair amount. I've been meaning to get back into playing because I have a really nice instrument (made of exotic wood even!) but not a lot of time. I really don't want to lose the skill even though I'm out of practice and it's fairly useless in the grand scheme of things. That's never stopped me before, though. Perhaps after this deadline (which has been moved to Thursday, gag!) has passed, I'll be able to get back into it and annoy the hell out of my neighbors. I'm sure I don't do that already with how much I sing in the shower. And while vacuuming? Ha.

Well, there's more than you ever wanted to know about my musical history. That was fun.
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It was my first semester at UNR, and I lived on the seventh floor of the "New Hall" dorm on campus (now called Argenta Hall). I was eighteen years old, a freshman just embarking on my degree. I remember people running through the hallway yelling early in the morning. I attributed this to fellow dorm-dwellers being jerks and wouldn't realize until later what the significance was. I was more annoyed because I had a 10:00 class and didn't really appreciate being woken up at five or six in the morning. I did my best to go back to sleep then gave up when my alarm went off. I showered and got ready for my Spanish class.

As I passed by the front desk downstairs, the desk-person seemed transfixed by the television. I glanced at it and saw buildings on fire and a plane flying into a building. I thought it was a little strange that there was a movie on so early in the morning but continued on my way.

Once I got to class, ten or fifteen minutes early as usual, I took my usual seat and waited for others to trickle in and class to start. Then as now, I tended to listen rather than strike up conversation with people around me, though I noticed the mood was rather subdued and something seemed off. Some classmates mumbled about how five or eight planes were down and there were snipers on the White House roof and the pentagon. I didn't understand.

My teacher, a short and slim Mexican woman, came in a few minutes late. Her usually stern demeanor seemed shaken by fear, and she appeared barely able to stand in front of the class much less tell us a brief version of what happened and that class was cancelled. It hit me this was no movie.

As I walked back to the dorms, I fought tears as I called my parents, who were staying in a hotel because it was their anniversary the night before. At that point, I had only been away from home a little over a month, and I had never felt so far away from my family as I did at that moment. My mom seemed annoyed that everyone was making a big deal about something no one could do anything about, but I still had to hear her voice and make sure things were okay. Before then, I could never really remember when their anniversary was, but I haven't forgotten since.

I don't recall what I did the rest of that day. Really, the week after that seems to blend in my mind-- hearing about airport closures, watching the repeated footage on TV, trying to figure out who did this and why and how the government was going to handle it, cutting out a flag from the newspaper and taping it up on the wall (then getting mad at the ridiculous hysteria of mass-patriotism and nationalism that gripped the country), returning to class and how each professor tried to find a way to address it, writing poetry, reading endless amounts of articles, wondering if it was okay to laugh and what to do when so many people were dead and/or hurt.

As with everything else, a lot has happened and changed in the last ten years, but that's what I experienced that day. I find myself not really wanting to ruminate further on this subject for some reason, probably because I don't want to feel more sad about it than is warranted given where I was, so this is where I will leave you. Highest regards for those still fighting in the multiple wars started since then, and deepest sympathies for those who have suffered.

Of course I remember. How could I forget?
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You know, I've been thinking about this all day, and I'm not sure what really fits this question. I love my dad, but he's not one for giving advice. The conversations I have with him usually center around his Irish-English dictionary (which he's been writing for over thirty years and will probably never be complete), linguistics in general (since I have an English degree), politics or religion. I learned long ago not to argue with him about the later two topics, mostly because it's pointless. He talks at me more than with me, and I have no reason to try to get him to see it my way because he's convinced half the time that I'm a terrible democrat whose mind has been warped by going to college, which isn't all that true, given my wavering stance on many different areas of thought, but that's neither here nor there. (Besides that, he believes all philosophy is moral relativism, and that doesn't sit well with the part of me that minored in philosophy. Don't even get me started on how much he hates lawyers.) The one time I tried to explain my stance on religion, he told me I had "dangerous thoughts" and implied I was going to hell. That would be assuming such a place exists, but try explaining that to a devout Irish Catholic who has only grown more religious as the years have passed.

However, an incident in high school stands out to me. I guess I should really call it THE incident in high school because it was the one time I really got in trouble. I was around sixteen. My older sister talked to a boy on the internet who lived in the next town over, and when they met in person, I was her unwitting wing-woman. This meant while she got to know the guy, I was stuck with his friend in the backseat of the guy's beaten up blue Volvo. (Incidentally, this is how I got my first kiss, and it was the start of one of the oddest relationships I've had to date.) Anyway, we drove out to meet them fairly often, and we'd hang out with their friends; they'd smoke; and eventually, we'd all drink, usually around a bonfire (real small-town cliche-like). One evening, the parents of one of their friends were out of town, so they threw a huge party like the teenagers we all were. My sister and I swigged vodka straight from the bottle (because we could do things like that and it still seemed cool in those days), and within an hour, we were both trashed. Our internet friends drove us to the nearest 7-11, called our parents (because I somehow slurred out the number to them), then left us.

My mom, being the disciplinarian and all-around parent in that relationship, was predictably pissed and got our stumbling asses home, spent half the next day giving us the silent treatment, and then doled out the lectures and castigation we both deserved. On top of feeling horrible because I was hungover, I slunk downstairs to try to get relief from the intense shame and disappointment that hung thickly in the air. I hid in the basement behind the only computer that connected to the internet (as we were a dialup family in those days).

I mention this because I don't remember my dad being around at all during this incident until that moment. He was fairly tight-lipped and tended to leave the room whenever mom was handing out punishments. This was pretty much the way it was my whole childhood, aside from him yelling at my siblings and me to turn off lights when we left the room and not to stomp our feet or make lots of noise overhead while he was working on his dictionary in the basement. (Well, that and generally not being a fan of us watching The Simpsons or Southpark or anything we listened to besides Cake, but that's another story.) But this day, he walked in the room (which is also where he worked), very quietly told me that everyone makes mistakes and that it would be alright, and walked back out.

My dad is fairly absent and has always had other priorities. We don't talk much; and we agree on even less; but that's the sort of thing I think about when anyone asks me about fatherly advice-- that almost non-existent voice in the background saying that even when you've messed up royally and it doesn't look like you'll ever make it right, it will eventually turn out okay.

Thanks, Dad.
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I've been on livejournal since April 21, 2004. That's a little under seven years, and it's a bit of a cliche to say a lot has happened in that time. It would be pretty sad if nothing had. When I started here, I was living in my first apartment and had another year to go before graduating from UNR. I spent a lot of time drinking with friends, discussing world issues, and being upset with myself and my relationships, especially my romantic one with a person with whom I never was going to have a future. I was firmly entrenched in college life, and I was much more worried about day to day issues than I was about what to do with the rest of my life or how to make lasting change happen.

I've heard the human body takes seven years to regenerate at a cellular level, meaning you're a completely new person every seven years. Perhaps that's what happened here.

In that time, I've graduated with a bachelor's degree, spent a year partying way too much and being irresponsible, took a graduate level course in legal literature, had three separate relationships crash and burn, upped my fitness level, lived in another apartment then with my brother and sister (together and separately), worked at two different non-profit companies, acquired two cats, made and lost some friends while retaining others, gone back to school and graduated with an associate's degree, worked as a freelance legal assistant and note-taker, found a full-time job that uses both of my degrees, moved into my own place, and learned so, so much about what I do and don't want out of life.

I feel like the person who started this is a lifetime away from where I am now. I don't know if I can really encapsulate everything that has happened, but the short of it is I have moved on and grown a lot as a person in that time, even if most of that growing seemed to coalesce finally in the past year.

Anyway, I've been sitting here for a while and kind of lost where I was going with this. Maybe it's time for me to go get some things done instead of trying to figure it out. I'll be back later.
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All right, this is totally going to be cheese-tastic, but I don't care because I haven't been saying it enough.

I've had a lot of ups and downs in the last six months, and I couldn't have gotten through it without my very excellent friends, family, and you. Your comments, concerns, chats, messages, advice, sharing personal experiences about past relationships, phone calls, drink sessions, beer crawls, meals, long drives around Tahoe, floats down the river, baseball games, concerts, making fun of poetry, movies, walks through crowds of Hot August Nights, listening to my near-constant whining/analyzing/backpedaling, and other general support have been super fantastic, and I really don't know how to thank you in a way that truly expresses my gratitude. I guess this will have to do for now, but really. All of you have been so great to me, even when I'm annoying the hell out of you.

So thank you.
howeverbrief: (Ink)
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I don't think a romantic relationship can ever be equal. Those who have been reading this journal for a while probably know why. I don't think most anything can be equal, whether it be with so-called equal rights, life's opportunities, or relationships. We have an ideal in mind, but in reality, it is much more difficult to put that ideal into practice and have it work 100% of the time. Why? Because we are imperfect. We may strive toward equality, but the problem is we're forever dealing with apples and oranges in these types of situations, and one can't force an apple to be an orange or vice versa.

Read more... )

I'm sorry

Oct. 21st, 2009 11:11 am
howeverbrief: (Ink)
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The subject of one day to live has actually been on my mind a lot. I'm not sure why, but I find myself looking around the present moment and wondering if the last things I've said to people are positive or negative, and if I find they are negative, I want to change them. Even if I am upset at a situation with a loved one, I find there's little need for them to feel unloved during it just to get my point across. As with many important concepts, this is much easier to say than it is to do. This is one of the many small things in which I remain unsuccessful, and perhaps these small things will be acts I will struggle with all the days of my life.

If I look really closely at these circumstances, I wonder if I am merely distracting myself from what's really important-- enjoying what I already have regardless if I can make it better or not (or if it brings me pain along with pleasure).

On the other side of the spectrum, so much of my time here recently has been spent lamenting conflicts in my current relationships, and every once in a while, I have to step back and try to look at the big picture, even if that perspective proves difficult and elusive. I mean, in the great scheme of things, is any of this conflict going to matter? Is any of this going to make a difference, or am I just spinning my wheels again? There's always the grand what-if questions that cut straight to the heart of these matters-- what if I'm blowing this out of proportion; what if that's the last thing I say; what if the other person dies without knowing what I really meant or how I really felt?

I get into these fits where nothing other than my own anger and pain seems important, but in the non-judgmental eyes of retrospection, I know that I am needlessly hurting myself and others along the way sometimes. I know I have to go through the process of combat to appease my wounded heart and ego, but afterward, it seems pointless-- my own heightened emotions almost daring me to become more ridiculous as time flows past. I ask myself if I am learning from any of this or if I just keep cycling through the same old lessons, if I'm never growing up but instead allowing myself to think I'm getting closer by watching the sun lazily set behind the mountains day after day. These are questions I cannot answer by myself, but the answers seem to dance just out of view over the horizon, a place I will never reach no matter how far I run or how high I climb.

In the meantime, approximations will have to do.

Today, if I knew I had one day to live, I know I couldn't take it all back. I could not, with two words, make it better. The past would remain as it is. I cannot change the person I have been, nor would I want to if I were given the chance. Surprisingly, though I sift through these ruminations every now and again, I find as the years go on that there are few people with whom I would do things differently. Yes, I've made horrendous mistakes in the journey to now. Yes, I have pushed people away and caused suffering. Yes, I have forgotten (or deliberately neglected) to apologize or say how I truly felt. But even holding that in my heart, I know all these things are mine. They are who I have been, and they will help shape who I will become, regardless if I have one day remaining or the rest of eternity to live. They are the things that people know about me and the things that I know about myself.

So really, the only person I would tell these things to is you-- you who needs to hear it. I'm sorry. I love you.
howeverbrief: (Smile)
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I like INFJ.


It's nice to be reminded every once in a while that I'm not the only one with this difficult personality. I know I have a place where I can go to ask questions and talk about topics a lot of other people don't seem to understand. Plus, I've met some really great people through that community, and even though not all of them update anymore, I appreciate the times they've shared with me.

So, thanks, INFJ. You're super swell.

Oh, Burn?

Jun. 24th, 2008 11:44 am
howeverbrief: (Default)
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Your mom knows some great comebacks!

Wait, that's not how this works, is it?


howeverbrief: (Default)

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