August 28, 2013

Let's Talk About Something Fun Today

What are we going to talk about?

I have no fucking idea, but it won't be about Miley Cyrus.

1.  We get free hot dogs at work today because we've all been so fabulous (I'm assuming that is why).

And tomorrow my office-mate and I organized a food day in our tiny office.  Mostly because we wanted an excuse to eat all day without getting up from our desk to go and get food.  So that's going to be awesome.

I'm bringing Baked Potato Dip (kinda like this recipe except I add green onions... for health) and Cinnamon Roll Cake (also for health).  Yep... I am making two things because I am Beyonce levels of awesome and Dom Deluise levels of in love with food.

Just photoshop my face onto this and use it as my tombstone.

And then Friday even more free hot dogs for lunch at work!

Apparently the week before Labor Day is a time for pre-fortifying yourself with nitrates (and mayonnaise) so you can eat more nitrates on the big day! HUZZAH!

2.  On Sunday my friend Kari from The Sunset Lane came over to help my un-motivated, decorating impaired self work on some strategery for making my apartment not look like a sterile dorm room.

We hung newspaper templates on the walls to figure out where to hang all of my art and photos, but, you guys, I'm getting kind of attached to the newspaper.  It might stay indefinitely.

Henry helped.

She also brought me this:

Henry doesn't even remember posing to have his portrait painted, but he obviously did because the likeness is uncanny!

We also ate pizza and brownies and bitched about dudes... basically a perfect Sunday afternoon!

3. I really like this song a lot:

Royals by Lorde

4. This Dana Barrett in Ghostbusters makeup tutorial is awesome... I just need someone to go with me to a Halloween party as The Keymaster.

And that's about as much fun as I can handle today!  Get back to work, nerds!

August 20, 2013

What's Ripe to Rot?

I read Rob Brezsny's horoscopes every week like it is my religion.  I know horoscopes and astrology aren't for everyone, but I think anyone with open, curious mind can benefit from reading his thought-provoking advice every week.

For instance, here is mine (Capricorn):
"The person who can't visualize a horse galloping on a tomato is an idiot," said the founder of Surrealism, writer AndrĂ© Breton. I wouldn't go so far as to call such an imagination-deprived soul an "idiot," but I do agree with the gist of his declaration. One of the essential facets of intelligence is the ability to conjure up vivid and creative images in one's mind. When daily life has grown a bit staid or stuck or overly serious, this skill becomes even more crucial. Now is one of those times for you, Capricorn. If you have any trouble visualizing a horse galloping on a tomato, take measures to boost the fertility of your imagination.
These are not your average run of the mill "you will meet a dark stranger" horoscopes.  They ask you to think deeply about yourself and to try something different.  I think anyone can benefit from that.

I look forward to reading his newsletter every week because it always contains some other tidbit (besides the horoscopes) that stop me right in my damn tracks.  This week it was this:

"Don't eat any food that's incapable of rotting," says Michael Pollan in  his book *In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto.* In other words, highly processed foods with a long shelf life don't contribute to your optimum vitality.  I'd like to expand this rule to make it an all-purpose guideline for life. Try out this hypothesis: If you're involved with any person or situation that never decays, or if there is some part of you that never decays, that's 
highly suspicious and may be a problem. Like growth, rot is a natural 
phenomenon. Indeed, every advancement requires or brings the disintegration of whatever it replaces. You can't grow if you don't rot. The "perfection" of stasis can be hazardous to your health.
What's ripe to rot in your world?
A couple of people have recently made comments (jokingly, but maybe 50% seriously) that although they admire my optimism about life it also bothers them (or annoys them possibly?)  My first reaction was 'What a strange reaction to someone trying to be happy?'

But then I thought 'Yeah, but who wouldn't be annoyed by someone who acts like sunshine and rainbows shoot out of their asshole 24 hours a goddamn day?'

I know I would.

So it's time for an honesty check.


Yeah I might spend a lot of time going full hippy dippy spiritual around here, but, believe it or not, I do not do kundalini yoga vision quests to the surface of the moon while wearing a flower crown and eating tempeh tacos most of the time.

But I bet he does.

I am not happy all of the time.  I go through incredibly shitty days, weeks, months, and years (let's not talk about calendar years 2009-2010).  I deal with mild depression, anxiety, social anxiety, introversion, and low self-esteem on a daily basis.

The last two weeks have not been fun for me.  I have been hurting.  I have been struggling.  I feel lonely and isolated and just burdened by a thousand little problems that won't seem to sort themselves out no matter what solution I throw at them.

But here is what I do know and what I carry around with me at all times: a deep and abiding belief that life has a cycle of its own design, that everything absolutely does work out for the best, that happiness will always be found, that the Universe is a deeply good place, that human beings are perfectly imperfect, and that just because something isn't working out right now doesn't mean that it never will.

My happiness right now is just a set of lost keys. I've turned over every sofa cushion, retraced every step, searched through every garbage can, torn apart my car, and what I've determined is this:  sometimes your happiness is found in being sad, in standing still and just letting yourself live through the process.  If everything in life is a lesson, then sometimes the universe sends us sadness for a reason.  It doesn't last.  What truly excites me is that I know when it seems like nothing is happening, EVERYTHING IS HAPPENING.  Everything is simmering underneath the placid surface of my life right now.

I don't understand how that couldn't put a little kick in anyone's step.  I'm living on the verge of something wonderful.  That's some cool shit.

So, yes, I rot sometimes. And I try to embrace it because I know the next cycle of joy in my life can't start until I do.

August 14, 2013


I seem to be in a kind of cocoon/waiting room period in my life right now.  It's kind of cool because I think when your life quiets down for a bit you know that big exciting stuff is in the works.  It's a feeling I really dig.  So in the meantime I've been cultivating the art of finding things that make me happy just for the sake of being happy.

And in the spirit of sharing (or talking about myself... which, let's face, is the entire raison d'ĂȘtre of this blog) I thought I'd do a little show and tell about some of my recent tingles.

1. Welcome to Night Vale

I'm sure many of you have already known about Night Vale for months and months, but I am traditionally the last person on every cool kid band wagon so I just heard about it this week.  For those that haven't heard about it, Welcome to Night Vale is a bi-weekly podcast about a little town in the desert called Night Vale where a lot of weird shit is happening.  It's kind of like Rod Serling and Amy Sedaris wrote an episode of Prairie Home Companion.  It's truly very awesome even if you aren't a science fiction fan.

2. The Wire by Haim

This is a new song from super cool sister group Haim.  I love their sound... like some weird Stevie Nicks/Belinda Carlisle/mid 90s Liz Phair combo. 

3. The Daily Love

I'm a good news junkie.  I treat my happiness like a set of lost keys: I look for it everywhere.  This website/daily email newsletter has become such a highlight in my day.  The creator Mastin Kipp started The Daily Love as a twitter account when he was in the baby steps of his own spiritual journey.  It's crazy how almost every day Mastin's message in my inbox feels almost like it was written specifically for me and addresses something I am currently going through... like today, for instance:

How many of us can do that in life? Instead of demanding what we want and wanting it now, can we ask The Uni-verse for what we want, and then let go? Can we rest in the peace of the moment knowing we are provided for and that the perfect thing, which is probably better than what we asked for in the first place, will show up?

Do we really have the faith to live the maybe? Or better put, can we see that the delays of The Uni-verse are not Its denials? Can we let go and let things unfold naturally? 
This just really spoke to me and how I've been feeling lately... like all of my momentum has been put on hold.  I think I've been struggling to recognize it as temporary, and instead I've been worrying that I might be at a dead end.  I've been seeing lots of 'Nos' when really I've been getting lots of 'Maybes'.  I had such a great aha moment when I read this.

4. The rain

We've been getting Oregonian levels of rain around here.  I am in love with it.  Everything is so GREEN and beautiful.  The trees are actually growing moss and there are mushrooms everywhere.  It's majestic.  But I am genuinely sorry for the people with flooded basements.

5. This picture of a tiger living his/her best life.

Every time I look at this picture of a tiger relaxing in a waterfall I feel peaceful.  And I don't know where I am in this photo... am I the tiger?  Am I the water flowing around the tiger? Or am I the stone and rock on which the tiger lays and over which the water flows?  Do I care?  Nope.

August 12, 2013


I have been having some trouble with anxiety lately.  Just an unrelenting tightness in my abdomen and a  lot obsessive thoughts and worrying.  Such a terrific way to walk through the world!

Sometimes I think the best thing to do when anxiety descends is to stop, take a deep breath, and express some fucking gratitude for all of the wonderful things you have in this world.

I have so many things to be grateful for... a ridiculous and embarrassing amount of things actually.

I have a sweet little dog that worships the ground I walk on.
And a funny cat.
I have parents that would do anything for me.
And aunts and uncles that would too.
And grandparents that think that I'm brilliant.
And friends that make me laugh.
And a dude that thinks I'm pretty rad.
I have good books to read.
And rainy days.
And sunny days.
I have meditation.
And poetry.
I have a body that lets me do just about anything I want.
I have a job that gives me space to be creative in my free time.
And co-workers that I actually enjoy being around.
I have air conditioning when I'm hot.
I have heat when I'm cold.
And I have shelter from storms.
I receive love, affection, and acceptance from so many.
I receive lessons and insight about myself from so many.
And kindness from strangers too.

And acknowledging all of that takes the edge off of my anxiety, but it's still there.  And I guess the thing I am most grateful for is my heart... which knows on every level that this is only temporary.  That the anxiety will pass and good things are always moving into your life and problems are always sorting themselves out and the universe is always conspiring to shower you with even more blessings.

So I think today is a day for treating myself and others tenderly... I'm just going to wrap myself in a nice warm duvet reminder of all of the things that are right in my world, and try and find some ways to spread a little love and kindness out into the world.

I hope everyone has an amazing day.

August 8, 2013

Imaginary Boyfriend Thursday... Riotous Joy Edition

I was inspired by Aunt Peaches (who is doing a series of blog posts highlighting the awesomeness of others), and decided to choose an imaginary boyfriend that inspires and delights me.

He's not everyone's cup of tea looks-wise (but, then, who is everyone's cup of tea? Jude Law probably), but he is seriously awesome.

His name is Rob Dyrdek...

... and he has a lust for life that is staggering and inspiring.

He is a skateboarder, entrepreneur, multiple world record holder, pop star, actor, and star of the MTV reality shows Rob and Big, Rob Dyrdek's Fantasy Factory, and Ridiculousness.

What I love about Rob is the way he approaches life... like it's one grand experiment/quest to find things to delight himself and others.  He lives with joy.  I think that is great.

He also loves dogs, mini horses, and tiny baby piglets.

He doesn't mind looking like idiot for a fun idea.

And he understands the importance of spontaneously breaking it down to a soulful ballad while going through a car wash.

When I'm struggling with anxiety about doing something... talking to a stranger, making a difficult phone call, or doing anything out of my ridiculously confining comfort zone... I try to think 'What Would Rob Do?'.

And the answer is that he would approach any situation with boundless enthusiasm and optimism.  He would treat it like his success was inevitable.  He would be relentless.  He would laugh at himself and carry on no matter what.

We all need to find some of the Rob in ourselves, and, if we can't do that, we can pretend he is our imaginary boyfriend, standing beside us to cheer us on.

Have fun today, kids.  The world is your oyster.

August 5, 2013

Waffle Christmas

I bet you didn't know today is the most important day in the whole waffle calendar!


It's also the day that I chose to eat less carbs for a week.  *Sad trombone*

I'll just have to rest easy in the knowledge that I've celebrated waffles pretty hard and thoroughly all year round, and in the meantime I'll think about the Patron Saint of Waffles (and one of my role models), Leslie Knope.

And always remember what Leslie says, "Waffles, friends, work".

And on a non-waffle related note, I think this essay called What Love Should Feel Like by Danielle Campoamor is wonderful.  Here's one of my favorite parts:

Love should feel like a marathon. It should exhilarate your heart and exhaust your mind and challenge your resolve. You’ll tell yourself you can’t keep going as you continue to put one foot in front of the other, taking every helpful and rejuvenating cup of water along the way. At the end, you’ll realize how many contributed to your happiness and success.

August 1, 2013

To All My Neighbors, You Got Much Flavor

Feeling a little down today for various intangible reasons.  I think I need to dance it out with a little impromptu internet dance party.

Join me, won't you?


Okay.  I feel a little better now.  How are you guys doing?

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