Quote of the week:
“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.”
— Anaïs Nin
BEWARE THE IDES OF MARCH.
. . .
Did you know I’m an English major?
You probably did.
Besides it being Caesar’s worst day, it’s also (as of this writing) nearly St. Patrick’s Day! I mostly dig this holiday because everything is MINT flavored, which is awesome. And yes, I do have a dash of Irish in my heritage . . . somewhere. It’s true! Don’t pinch me!
(Gosh, that was awful tradition in school . . . as an adult, aren’t you glad those days are behind you?)
March thus far has actually been a rather stressful month: I did my taxes (never ever fun for freelancers), had a few doctors’ visits, and work is still pretty slow. But I’ve had like, three Shamrock Shakes from McDonald’s, so I mean, it hasn’t been all bad.
Anyway, on with the first part of this month’s journal challenge! As always, please feel free to join the conversation in the comments! I’d love to hear everyone’s thoughts and whatever awesome things you all are up to!
Somewhere that’s green
Am I wrong that this is the first thing that popped into my mind?
(also, i first typed “pipped” instead “popped,” and now i’m thinking of like, orange pips from Sherlock Holmes sprouting in my brain. i’m tired)
Your most fantastic dream
This is a tricky one for me because I don’t really dream. (Yes, I know that technically everybody dreams every night, most of us just don’t remember them, yada yada yada.) I’m also not a fan of dreams; whenever I dream, I wake up more tired than if I hadn’t. I think it’s because being able to remember your dreams means you’re in a lighter stage of sleep, when I’d much rather be in the deepest, blackest sleep possible. On the other hand, dreams do that time warp thing where it feels like a dream is hours and hours long, but it’s really only lasted five minutes, and so it kinda seems like you’re getting more rest, and you are technically asleep, so . . . whatever. I don’t like them that much. I did try once to keep a dream journal, so I have about two years’ worth of dream writings from that time, but as those who do this kind of thing know, writing down dreams usually makes you have more of them, and I was overall just grumpy all the time and tired of having write those nonsense things down. But I digress.
As for a fantastical dream . . . I guess I’ll say this one I had in high school and which I luckily have the journal entry for:
It started off as most dreams often do – a fluffy blob of nonsensical colors, shapes, and sounds as the real world and its properties merge with the dream world and slowly dissipate. Somehow I ended in my gramma’s house, celebrating some sort of celebration or other. Two of my friends [D and A] were there, slightly less baffled than I. D, for some reason, had acquired a giant balloon hat, and had busied herself with making it more “presentable.”
I remember that the house was dark, unnaturally so. We slowly crept around the house (which was not in its current state, but utterly different), sometimes on hands and knees, sometimes on foot. My aunt and uncle, agitated, almost caught us peering around a corner, but we managed to evade their gaze. Why we were sneaking around escapes me.
Then it was time to go. My mom came to pick us up and take us home, and suddenly we were in the car on the freeway. D was still engrossed in fixing her hat, having now draped it in a black cloth with the Jolly Roger symbol embossed upon it. A and I were in the back, enjoying a few laughs at some stupid joke as we went towards the offramp leading home. I then noticed, with a fair amount of alarm, that the road was covered in patches of fire.
Firefighters were all around, trying to put out the fire with their great hoses. The road itself had dissolved into a sort of slippery black sand and ashes. The firefighters tossed squares of sandpaper on the road for the car to travel on, one man in particular coming so very close to getting hit by our car as he threw the last few sheets.
Suddenly the car disappeared, and we were all sliding down the incline, unable to slow because of the slippery black sand. We reached the bottom, and I was more dazed than hurt. D especially seemed unperturbed – she stuck a feather into her undamaged hat and proclaimed, “Now my muffin is complete!” I was torn between two emotions – half amazed at the splendor that was her hat muffin and half surprised at her ignorance of the present circumstances.
I looked over at what should have been streets and buildings, only to discover it was a black sandy beach, with a brilliant sunset shining over the water. The sights was mind-blowing: the sun was a vibrant yellowy-red, the water a translucent pink-blue, and the sky a disconcerting purple. I immediately thought of my camera, which to my dismay, I remembered I had left on the pull-down tray in the car (which my car does not really have). I looked up at the ramp we had come so unceremoniously down (I was still lying on the ground) and saw my camera, along with other accessories, lying there picture-perfect on the black sand.
I, for some reason, could not get up, and I called out to A to take a picture of the sunset for me, but she (sitting on top of me) said she had to take a picture first, whipping out her cell phone. I was not pleased, and said irritably that the sun was going to set. And indeed, by the time I was able to get up, the sun had set.
It was a horrible, yet beautiful sight, the kind that you cannot bear to watch and yet cannot turn away. The sun was gone and there was no moon. The water had turned pitch black, so dark nothing could have been reflected on its surface. The sky and the surrounding area was purple and black, but in such an array of shades that I had never seen before. The sky seemed to whirl, with spiraling gray swirls. It was only then I noticed the fire.
Fire raged the opposite side. Hundreds of firefighters milled over the scene, vainly squirting puny water hoses at the flames. Bulldozers and cranes moved chunks of dirt around. The fire was not red or orange, but a vibrantly light blue, contrasting sharply with the dark sky. It raged and roared and burned and seethed and surged. It went on for miles: the harsh purple sky, ash-smeared firefighters, shiny black sand, smoke-stained machines, and that bright, bright blue fire…
Then I woke up.
Now, if you’re thinking that this doesn’t seem like the half-coherent scribbles one would expect dream writing to be immediately after waking up, you are quite correct. This was written quite a bit after the fact, and I’m pretty sure I shared it on Facebook, hence the very dramatic style.
Do you like green tea?
Not particularly. I drank it quite a lot early on in my weight-loss journey, but I’m a disgrace to Chinese and English tea drinkers everywhere because I need sugar in my tea and overall vastly prefer iced tea. Green tea just doesn’t cut it for me, but I will have some like, in Japanese or Chinese restaurants, because it’s like, legit tea leaves and a kettle, with tiny cups that the leaves sink to the bottom of, and I can pretend I’m either Miss Spink and Miss Forcible from Coraline (“Dangah!”) or Professor Trelawney from Harry Potter (“The Grim!”).
NEW ALBUM COMING OUT AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH
Do you believe in fairies?
Not in actuality, but in my more imaginative states of mind, I like to think they’re real and we can only see them when we’re little (classic “children are special” trope) and forget when we’re older — or at least, most of us do. Hm, there’s a story idea there . . .
Also, I spent way too much on Neopets when I was younger because I still usually want to put faerie instead of fairy. If I had to try to make a legitimate distinction, I would put modern-day fair folk as “fairies” — like Tinkerbell — and Tolkien elves as Faerie (also note the capital letter).
Things you think are a bunch of blarney
Is this where we got “a bunch of baloney” from?? Google mostly turns up the actual castle of Blarney but also this interesting article about the history of “blarney.”
Things that are a bunch of blarney to me tend to be in the moment: Printer won’t print anything but blank pages with a single black spot? Blarney! You tell me that there’s no such thing as too much chocolate? BLARNEY! Irish people probably don’t really say this word that often? BLARNEY!
Is the pen mightier than the sword?
YOU BET IT IS!
Is the number 13 bad luck? Do you have any superstitions?
I’m combining these two questions because I have the same simple answer for both: No.
I don’t knock anyone who does have superstitions — I mean, everyone knows what it’s like to seemingly jinx something — but I personally don’t have any. To me, the world is just too random for one thing or ritual to be consistently blamed for something else happening.
But I am tempted to toss salt over my shoulder whenever I spill some, just because of this scene in Disney’s The Legend of Sleepy Hollow:
Things that help you calm down
For someone who has panic attacks, I don’t really have an answer for this question! There’s nothing that I consistently turn to, anyway. It also probably depends on why I need to calm down; if I’m angry, then stepping away from whatever is inducing the anger helps (CURSE YOU, IKEA ALLAN WRENCHES!). If I’m anxious, then doing something mindless, like watching TV, helps. If I’m sad, then I tend to cry, which can be embarrassing, but I always feel so much better afterward if I allow myself to cry. The BF also likes to send me cute puppy pics and comics when he knows I’m sad. ❤
What clubs were you in, in high school?
I went to a very small school (my graduating class had ninety kids and that was the biggest class in history before and since — the very first graduating class had TWO seniors! a boy and a girl! did they date?? my friends and I, looking through old yearbooks, always wondered this), and so we didn’t really have that many clubs. I did participate in a book club of sorts, initiated by my English teacher, and it was just a little group of us that read a few books over the year. I know we read at least two, but the only one I remember is The Kite Runner, and in hindsight, that’s a pretty shocking choice in a tiny, conservative Christian school! Maybe that’s why it only lasted one year . . .
I was also part of the Tennis Club, though I fully admit it was to try to get some sort of extracurricular activity in my school records, because I did not know how to play tennis. Luckily, that was fine, as most of the kids didn’t, but I also never learned because we met barely once every other month, and it was hot and sweaty business, and I’m pretty sure I skipped most of those sparse meetings.
- (Slight TMI warning ahead.) This week, I went to see the OB/GYN for examination and pap smear. I’d never been before, which is . . . not great. (You’re supposed to go regularly at least after 21.) And I had a rough idea of what the appointment was going to be like and what to expect. So I thought I wasn’t nervous. But the whole morning that day, I felt sick and faint. When I exercised, I had to take a break in the middle because I wasn’t sure I could go on. I didn’t eat much, and I was overall just on edge. And I kept telling myself that it couldn’t be because of the appointment, because I didn’t feel nervous! But in the end, of course, that’s exactly what it was. I was totally stressed out about it, and I had just squished it down so as not to think about it, and it was messing me up. The appointment ultimately went fine, my gynecologist was very nice and answered all my questions (I’m healthy, yay!), and as soon as I left, I felt better. I was peppier, my appetite came back, etc. It’s very interesting to me how much your mental/emotional state can physically affect your body, even in less-than-obvious ways, even when you think telling yourself that you’re not nervous means that you won’t be. That’s not to say, however, that having a sort of mantra isn’t an effective coping method — whenever I feel an emetophobic panic attack coming on, I tell myself repeatedly, “I’m not gonna get sick, I’m not gonna sick . . . ” and that can help. Not all the time, but trying to keep rational thought above the raw anxiety usually keeps me from slipping into pure panic.
- My little brother’s birthday was earlier in the month, and he got the new Nintendo Switch! IT’S PRETTY LEGIT, YOU GUYS. The BF has one too, and both have been playing Breath of the Wild like, nonstop. I’ll also probably play that game, but I’m still happily tending to my farm in Stardew Valley, XD.
- Yesterday was Pi(e) Day! THE BEST DAY OF THE YEAR.
- The BF and I went to this delicious sandwich place like, two weeks ago, and I’m still thinking about it, it was so good.
How’s your March been so far?