Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Joys and Unforseen Consequences of Being 21, and a Mini Vacation: Introduction

Note that this post is titled "introduction" for a couple reasons: The first being that my computer or internet or Firefox or whatever it is is doing that thing where though I type an average of over 90 words per minute, only one letter is showing up at a time and there's a horrendous lag, and, well, I just can't deal with that.

The second reason is that in about an hour L. and I are leaving to go to the airport on our mini vacation! We're going to Santa Barbara to visit his parents until Monday. Sure, it's only going to be 55, maybe 60 degrees--certainly not beach, or, much to my chagrin, sandal weather--but it's better than the single digit temps and snow here in Western Mass! (Though to be fair, the last few days we've had 50 degree rain, and sun snow showers? Um?)

So, fear not, the 21st birthday shenanigans are indeed on their way, and I promise that you'll appreciate how ridiculous the past few days have been. I've realized, as well, that being 21 involves being in a constant state of hangover, which isn't very nice.

Also, thanks so much everyone for all the super sweet Birthday wishes! xo


Thursday, January 21, 2010

I'm 21!

That's right, friends. Watch out, because today is my long-awaited 21st birthday. And 10 hours in, there have already been many, many blog-worthy shenanigans.

Looking forward to sharing them all with you tomorrow but for today, I'm gonna get off the computer and go celebrate!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Interior Designer Within Is Yearning for Something Other Than a Dorm Room

I need to get an apartment, and fast.

My creativity is being stifled in a dorm room. I'm so over college living.

I'm channeling my design tendencies vicariously into mood boards that I hope will be of use to me next year when I'm actually designing my very own apartment!

Here is my dream bedroom:

Monday, January 18, 2010

True Story: My Professor Now Thinks I'm a Jerk, and I Probably Have Mono

1. The boyfriend has been sleeping through his iPhone alarm (that goes off at 7:45 IN THE MORNING) a lot of mornings this month, most likely because his internal body temperature is probably set at 118 degrees and he thus insists in sleeping with the noisy fan on in the middle of the winter. (I counteract this by turning the heat up...I'm not paying the heating bill! Ah, the wonders of dorm life). As a result, I've been graciously offering to set my cell phone alarm (who uses alarm clocks any more, anyway?) for the ungodly hour of 7:45 to ensure he doesn't oversleep and can be on time to the hospital (he's "being a doctor" this month, aka shadowing), and then I happily re-set my alarm to 9am and wake up for my 10am class. It's college. I can sleep late if I like.

Well, this morning the same old deal went down, although the night before I had kindly asked him if he could re-set my alarm in the morning so that I didn't have to do a darn thing and could sleep happily while he prepared to actually contribute something to the real world. So my alarm goes off at 7:45, he gets up but doesn't get out of bed, and I finally begrudgingly crack open an eye around 7:55 to see him staring dumbfoundedly at my EnV 3, which is clearly more confusing than an iPhone. After deducing that he has no idea how to set my alarm, becoming annoyed at my state of wakefulness, and remaining half asleep, I set my alarm to 10am and fall back asleep.

My alarm proceeds to go off at 10am. Thinking it's 9am, I drift in and out of sleep until about 10:45 and then, thinking it's 9:45, throw on some leggings, an oversized sweater, and my fuggs, and wander over to class. I open the door and see that everyone's already there and have begun to discuss the novel, and figure I'm a minute or two late.

Everyone turns to stare. "Hi," my professor says, taking a break from his lecture.

"Hi!" I reply, sleepily but cheerfully, as I take my seat and begin taking out my notebook and novels. There's an almost imperceptible beat, but class continues as usual and I jump right into the conversation.

It's only when I glance at the screen of the laptop of the guy sitting next to me that I realize what time it actually is: 11:30. Class, as I said, begins at 10. A note of panic strikes me. I stupidly try to figure out if I've actually been in class for an hour and a half already, wonder if I fell asleep at some point, and then begin to have vague remembrances of setting my alarm for 10.

Mortified, I pray for class to end. At noon, when everyone else is leaving, I walk up to my prof.

"I'm so sorry I was late." I say emphatically. "I set my alarm an hour ahead and didn't notice the time difference."

He glances at me. Clearly doesn't believe me. "Yeah," he says, "I thought it was odd how casually you sauntered in."

Facepalm. I am so mortified.

New goals for the rest of the month: Make boyfriend find a Plan C of waking up on time, and convince my prof I'm not a jerk.

Also, find out if I have mono. WHY am I finding it so difficult to wake up at a respectable hour?

Friday, January 15, 2010

Date Night and a Must-Hear

Note: Shameless Plugging ahead
(but not for myself so it's okay...right?)

Though we haven't been apart very much this week, L. and I are getting a little stir-crazy on campus, which is why I've been so looking forward to spending some time together on our date night tonight!

We're driving to the grand city of Pittsfield to have dinner and see a show by a great band, Darlingside.

Its members are all recent (and waningly recent, he-he) graduates of Williams, and they're really great and talented guys who are on the verge of their big break! So if you like indie, string-rock, cellos, quintets, acoustic jams, or just great music, check this video out and spread the word!

Hope everyone has a lovely weekend.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Beautiful Blogger Award

And here you all thought today would be a meaty post filled with fresh insights, witty anecdotes and a touch of sarcastic asides after I managed to shirk my blogging duties yesterday by posting about my award, aka taking the easy way out.

Well, if I ever do achieve any of those things on a normal day, I have to apologize and ask you to give me one more day of self-indulgence. Furthermore, I have to thank the lovely Katherine Anne at Medical School Mrs. for thinking of me!

The rules of this one are:

1. Thank the person who gave you the award
2. Paste the award on your blog
3. Link back to the person who gave you the award
4. Share seven interesting things about yourself
5. Nominate up to 7 more beautiful bloggers
6. Link the seven bloggers you nominate
7. Shouldn't there be a seventh rule? There's seven everything-elses. Oh well.

Seven Beautiful Bloggers:

1. J. at Kissing Frogs
2. Jessica B. at Everyday Adventures of Me in the City
3. Stephany at Stephany Writes
4. CJR at Girl v. The World
5. Date Girl at Date Girl Diaries
6. Melissa at Duoly Noted
7. Melissa at So About What I Said...

Now I think I'm supposed to list seven interesting things about me. Maybe that was the seventh rule. That would make a lot of sense.

Seven Interesting Things About Me:

1. I am adopted; the papers didn't officially go through until I was 16! Though I've been living with my adoptive family since I was about 12.

2. I was the sports editor for my college newspaper and have often thought about going into sports journalism; I know I could hold my own out there with the boys.

3. I had never been to New York City until the age of 20 (or, two weeks ago!), and still have never been to Disney World or anywhere in any other continent besides London.

4. I am absolutely clinically diagnosably panic-attack ridden and anxiety stricken about flying. I hyperventilate, cry, shake, vomit, and sometimes do all of the above when I fly. Incidentally, I am also flying four times (so far) in the upcoming year...

5. I am not, however, in the least afraid of sharks (I love them and have been swimming with them), snakes, clowns, public speaking, dogs, rodents, or thunder and lightning.

6. I am, however, afraid of probably everything else.

7. I got my first pedicure at the age of 19. ...But now I am utterly addicted.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Splash Award

Stephany, who blogs over at Stephany Writes, gave me the Splash Award last week, and I had planned to save it for a rainy day (no pun intended...okay, I intended it) in which I had nothing else to write about. Thanks Stephany!

Well my friends, though the sun is miraculously shining in Williamstown for the first time in weeks (literally), it is in essence a rainy day for yours truly since I have nothing interesting to share with you all today.

Here are the rules of the blog award!:

1. Put the logo up on your blog.
2. Nominate up to 9 blogs which allure, amuse, bewitch, impress or inspire you.
3. Link to your nominees in the post.
4. Let them know that they have been splashed by commenting on their blog. (I usually wait to do this to see if people find it out on their own, and then I know they would have read the blog either way. Muahaha.)
5. Remember to link to the person from whom you received the award.
6. Have FUN.

For this award, in the interest of "having fun" and to be a little different, 'cause that's what I'm all about, I suppose I will find a blog that does each of the adjectives listed above. It will be fun and probably quite awkward:

Alluring blog: Date Girl is alluring in two exactly polar opposite ways: her stories of terrible dates, ones-who-got-away, and the general ups and downs of dating were hilarious and, honestly, sometimes scary, but she just got engaged (!), and since we all know I'm obsessed with weddings, I am so excited to see the development of hers.

Amusing blog: Duoly Noted. Melissa is one of the funniest people I've ever "known." Also, really funny and sometimes unfortunately funny things seem to happen to her disproportionately more than other people?

Bewitching blog: lists "bewitching" as enchanting, interesting, fascinating. With that definition, I'm gonna go with Shine Out Loud, because the more graphic her posts get, the more I can't tear my eyes away from them. It is great stuff.

Impressive blog: This is gonna have to go to Cup of JO, though she probably doesn't even know I exist (sniffle...); she posts multiple times a day, is classy, witty and charming, and has about a bajillion followers. Goal of my life.

Inspirational blog: Medical School Mrs., because I basically want to have her exact life in 3 years when L. is in his second year of med school, and she seems like such a sweetheart and great wife.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Things I Meant to Say: Baileys and Hot Chocolate

1. To begin the random tidbits today in my second Things I Meant to Say installment, I'd just like to thank everyone for their supportive comments on my last post. While I'd still like to believe that there's a part of him that's not an absolutely horrible person and to a degree, I do, I know it's time to end the friendship. I also laughed when Maureen brought up whether or not he'd be inviting me to the wedding, which is something I myself have been wondering. That's one situation I will not be dumb enough to get myself into. But having all your sweet comments really helped, and that's what blogging's all about after all!

2. It is Friday afternoon of Winter Study, which is our one-month long term between Fall and Spring semester in which we only take one class. Mine meets three times a week for two hours. Basically, this month is one three-and-a-half-week-long relaxation fest, and this first Friday of it has gotten off to the perfect start. I'm curled up in my room, sipping on creamy hot chocolate which may or may not have some of the caramel Baileys that Santa put in my stocking this year since he knew I'm turning 21 this month, waiting for L. to come home from the hospital (don't worry! He's just shadowing a doctor), and feeling generally content.

3. I had lunch today with a great friend of mine and the former Editor-in-Chief of the Record, our newspaper for which I used to be a passionate and involved editor, but have since failed to see eye to eye with the editors that have replaced my good friend EIC, and so have been on an indefinite leave of absence since last fall. EIC graduated last year along with Real Life Dan Humphrey and that whole group, and I miss them terribly, but our two hour lunch was wonderful. He's attending grad school at Cambridge and generally leading an amazing life, and I hope I'm as successful as him post-baccalaureate.

4. My GRE study materials arrived in the mail this week. I glanced over the vocab and the verbal sections once and scoffed; I glanced over the quantitative section and threw up in my mouth a little bit. Alright, look, I know that solving equations for x and figuring out the angles of triangles given their hypotenuse or whatever isn't hard stuff, people. But I haven't done this shizz since sophomore year of high school. I'm freakin' out. I mean, I'm the person who got near-perfect 800s on the verbal and writing sections of her SATs. (I bet for many of my fellow twenty-something bloggers reading this, the writing section of the SAT is an elusive and curious prospect that you never had to deal with. It was easy schmeasy and raised my overall score by a ton). But math? Not-so-much. Let's just hope the UCLA English doctoral program doesn't need me to know how to use angles and algebra.

5. L. and I have been making our way through the entire series of Entourage over the last week. We just started season 3. Does anyone watch Entourage? It's so, so, SO good. It's like Sex and the City for men, except let's face it, I'm kind of a man sometimes (including, but not limited to, my distrust of radical feminism, my love of football, red meat, and chicken wings, my dirty sense of humor, and my addiction to video games), so I'm just loving it. Ladies, check it out. You might be surprised how much you enjoy it. Or not.

6. Now that I've watched a lot of Entourage, I want to go back and watch the Notebook over again but just watch the scenes that Kevin Connolly is in. I think it will be hilarious.

7. Speaking of Kevin Connolly, at 5'5, he certainly does not meet my infamous height standards for dating. Though I would much rather date E. than Vince or Ari any day. Though I give much respect to Mrs. Ari.

Happy Weekend, all!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Engagement Fever and Friends Who Aren't Who You Thought They Were

Let me just preface this post by saying that this is THE YEAR (and by "this" I don't mean 2009 nor 2010, but this collection of the last few months) to get engaged. Everyone has gotten engaged. My brother, who to be quite honest we never thought would get engaged. I am so invested in the lives of some bloggers that I love to read that I actually squealed out loud when I read their engagement posts.

But there's one engagement that's really affected me, in a pretty terrible way.

He's been one of my best friends since we were 15. He was the mutual best friend of Big Relationship and myself, and all through high school the three of us were like the Three Musketeers. Lame reference, but it gets the point across.

The thing was, I was always attracted to him, in every way you can be attracted to someone; he's great-looking, he's funny, he plays guitar, he sings, he was super nice, and I loved spending time with him. Oh, and he was totally into me too, which always helps.

Of course, acting on those feelings would have screwed up my relationship with Big Relationship--more than it already was, I guess,--and so we never did. We slowly started to reveal our feelings for each other over the years, and when he went to college my junior year of high school (in 2005), we emailed and IMed constantly. Soon enough we were signing our emails with "I love you," and I considered him my best friend.

Big Relationship and I broke up my freshman year of college, and for the first time in our friendship with our Third Muskeeteer I was single, but he was not. He had started dating a girl a year older than him at his college, which was about an hour and a half away from Williams (in the town that our biggest rival school is located, hint hint.)

Big Relationship and I remained friends after our breakup (miraculously), and so we went Christmas shopping together that winter break (this was 2007 at this point). We ended up running into our friend at the mall, and all decided to grab dinner together. I didn't go in the same car as Big Relationship since I wanted to spend time with our friend who we hadn't seen in months.

That car ride was one of the most difficult interactions I've ever had. We struggled against so many feelings and mainly tried to hold back the urge to pounce on each other (okay people, at that point it had been about 4 years of pent-up, uncontrollable attraction) and it was at that point that we really started vocalizing our not-so-secret emotions. We emailed back and forth, said I love you, IMed multiple times a week, texted, and generally kept up a long distance relationship without, y'know, the whole relationship part.

Though our colleges were only an hour apart we never saw each other by the time he graduated (he's two years older so I was a sophomore in college when he graduated). Not to say we didn't joke about it, but we both knew in our heart of hearts that seeing each other would be too confusing and complicate things too much. And especially after I started dating L., the love of my life, I knew that I didn't want to do anything to mess it up.

He and his girlfriend moved back near my hometown, about 10 mins from me. Last Christmas we had a coffee date but it fell through, and I started to fear that I would never see him again. Above all else, he continued to be one of my oldest and closest friends, and I decided that if our attraction to each other precluded us from ever spending time together again, we had better just put it behind us.

The Tuesday before this Christmas, I got a text from him asking if I was free and if I wanted to meet up for dinner. I was elated at the prospect of seeing him, determined to keep it friendly, and curious to see him for the first time in two years. We met at the restaurant and he looked slightly older but sounded exactly the same, and I realized how much I had missed him and how much he meant to me all at once.

At dinner, I joked that we'd have to put our notions of one day acting on our attraction or being together aside for good.

"Why?" he asked. "Are you getting married?" He knew all about L.

"Funny," I had said. "No, but I would assume you would be soon?"

He didn't answer the question but made some sort of snarky remark, as is his custom, and I found myself feeling slightly sorry for his girlfriend who had been out of college for two years and was living with someone who seemingly had no intentions of proposing anytime soon.

After dinner (he paid), we sat in my car to talk a little more and to say goodbye. It was at that point that I realized he didn't intend on just keeping it friendly. He talked about how he felt that we'd never be able to move on and be happy in our relationships with other people unless we gave into the temptation that had governed our friendship for 6 years. It's like that quote from The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde: "The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it. Resist it, and your soul grows sick with longing for the things it has forbidden to itself, with desire for what its monstrous laws have made monstrous and unlawful." I'm pretty sure Wilde was talking about homosexual desire and not a deep attachment between two close friends, but I guess the feeling's the same.

When he leaned in to kiss me I told him that I couldn't; that though it might suck to hear, I was pretty certain that L. was the person I wanted to spend the rest of my life with, and it wasn't something I was willing to ruin. It was awkward and confusing and neither of us was really sure what to do. He argued that I came before his girlfriend and he came before L., and that in a way we were entitled to our feelings and entitled to act on them in order to move on, since if we hadn't moved on in 6 years, who was to say we ever would? The whole conversation was confusing and hard and when he left I found myself missing L. , who was home in California, more than ever. I called him right after.

About a week later, on New Year's Day, I signed onto Facebook. The top story on my newsfeed was an album called "Engagement." It was his. It detailed the entire process of his proposal, to her acceptance, to pictures of the ring and of them together. This coming from someone who hasn't added a new photo to Facebook since 2006. He completely has no presence on it whatsoever (he accused me of forgetting his birthday one year because he didn't even notice I had written happy birthday to him). Yet there it was, the new album, which I couldn't help but feel was horribly intended, at least partly, for my eyes.

I was enraged. Thoughts and accusations rushed through my mind. I couldn't understand what had happened. He never even seemed like he genuinely loved her; where had the proposal come from? How long had be been planning it? Did he have the ring with him when he tried to make a move on me?

Where did I fit in the whole equation? Was his attempt a test--to try for one last time to see if we had a shot, and if I would be willing to drop everything for him? Was be being a grade A douchebag and trying to have one last hurrah before committing the rest of his life to someone? Did he just want something that he knew he could get--did it even matter that it was me?

I felt horrible. I felt that he had disrespected our friendship, me, L., and his now fiancee. I waited for him to text me or email me or call me to tell me the news himself--which he never did.

We finally messaged a couple nights ago. I have the conversation here. In the interest of protecting his privacy I won't post the whole thing, but here are some notable moments:

I said that I saw that congratulations were in order, and asked if he already had the ring when he saw me. First, he said this:

Him: "No, but I had been thinking about it for awhile."

To which I responded,

Me: "And you just wanted to have one last hurrah before you did it."

To which he protested, and said that I "knew I was special." Did I?

Then, his argument changed. He said:

Him: "I was only thinking about it before. It wasn't until a week after you and I saw each other that I realized I wanted to ask her. But I have been thinking about my future for a long time."

So, let's try to get that straight. First, he had been thinking about it for awhile, the term "awhile" implying an extended period of time. Then that time span shortens drastically, when he realizes he wants to ask her a week after we saw each other, which would imply that he hadn't been thinking about it "before," that meaning before we saw each other. But then, lo and behold, he's been thinking about his future for a "long time," seemingly much longer than a week or "awhile."

Confused? Good. I was too.

Then this classic line happened:

Him: Why are you so bummed out?

That was fun. After trying to make him understand that his behavior was of grade A douchiness, I said that I didn't see how we could navigate a friendship from here, to which he responded "however we manage to."

I tried to make myself more clear:

Me: "So much of our friendship is predicated on our attraction to each other. Can we really maintain it and not feel weird about it after you're married?"

He continued to assert that I was being "inappropriate" (I WAS???), that I was coming off as jealous, that I was "thinking about it too much." I maintained my defense of marriage:

Me: "I take marriage really, really seriously. I really respect it. I'm not going to feel like I'm disrespecting yours in the future by continuing our friendship--from here on it's inappropriate to even joke or insinuate or anything about our relationship to one another like we always have."

His response? I'm sure his fiancee would love to see it:

Him: "It's inappropriate for us to kiss. It's inappropriate for us to date. It's not inappropriate for me to tell you that I want to [I'm sure you can imagine what he wanted to do], because we have an understanding between us."

I was horrified.

Me: "It is. You're getting married. Both words and actions count in fidelity."

To which he responded,

Him: "Not words. Intention."

I don't know what he intends to do, but as for me, I think it's about time to close the door on this friendship, which is hopelessly rooted in unrealistic ideals and insinuations that were once exciting and fun and wonderful to dream and hope for, but are now tawdry and inappropriate since he has given a ring to someone who is not me. I realize how lucky I am to have L., who I hope and am pretty sure would never be unfaithful to me, but would most certainly not make a move on another woman a week before proposing to me. I'm so sad at the prospect of losing one of my oldest friends, but out of respect to L., his fiancee, and most importantly myself, I don't think I can forgive the way he treated me and our friendship.