Ready, Set, Done

I’m tired. Beat down tired.

Yes, physically because I’ve worked every day this week so far, and will work until Sunday, which is my only day off this week. I was also running around last night in a town an hour away from me (left right after work) for an audition, and I had to be to work this morning at 9am. That’s not terrible, but let’s throw in the fact that I had to be to the bus stop this morning at 10 before 8… and I’m not a morning person. It sucked, to say the least.

Frankly, though, it’s more than work that’s making me tired, though there are many reasons that it makes me tired. Don’t get me wrong; I’m grateful to have a job, but it’s not the one that I want to find myself working a year from now.

So why am I tired?

I’m tired of my job, and I’m tired of what I’m eating. So much of me wants to say “screw everything; I’m vegan now”. Yes, I know… coming from a girl that loves food, this would be considered foodie suicide to some. However, my body’s been reacting strangely to all the fried food I’m having (no kidding, right?), so I just want to cleanse my body. It’s tough, though, since I feel like I’m constantly hungry, and having water all the time is getting on my nerves, even though I love it. (pass the lettuce)

I’m tired of being single, yet I’m too chicken to really talk to guys. I honestly thought I would grow out of this, but I haven’t. I still feel awkward at best around anyone, including guys. Why a man would want to be bothered with this fumbling awkward black woman is beyond me… which might be the crux of most of my problems in that department.

Yet it feels like no matter what I do to change that, it won’t change. Finding someone good to love is too hard. Part of me wants to try, and the other part of me says “screw it”. I find myself saying “screw it” more often than not because I’m not one to give a million chances. Dare to think someone might be different, and it usually ends in disappointment.

I shouldn’t complain because I have been blessed… but things could be better, and I know that.

You ever have too many decisions to make about your life, and you feel overwhelmed? Have you ever just want to say “screw it all”, fall off the grid, and carve coconuts for a living in the Bahamas? I sure have! In fact, that sounds like a great idea right about now.

Becoming a famous, yet slightly anonymous chocolatier in France would be awesome as well. Just saying.

Or… sometimes you want to do so much with your life, and feel like you don’t have enough money or time to do all that you want to do?

Both suck.

The only thing that I really know is that I was meant to be unconventional. Whenever I try to do the normal thing (get what most people consider to be a job, get a car and a place to live, and also get married and have children), I end up wanting to kill myself or fall of the grid and carve coconuts.

It’s not that I don’t want any of those things; I just don’t want the normal job. I’d be unhappier than I am right now, and possibly even more tired.

For now, I’ll sleep on it. I think I’ve let my lack of sleep talk enough for one night.

The Pre-Date Struggle

There’s nothing more exciting than someone asking you out on a date, particularly if that someone is really cute or is a someone that you’ve been interested in for a while.

It’s exciting, that is, until you get to the day of. There’s a whole process that I personally go through when it’s definite that I’ll be going out with someone.

The night before 

  • Lie in bed staring at the ceiling. Thoughts: “What the crap am I going to wear??”

The day of the date (if you don’t have to work)

  • Wake up after (finally) going to sleep last night. Still don’t know what to wear. You try to get some things done early before you allow yourself to get ready to go out.
  • Will yourself not to get ready too early.

Three hours before the date

  • Start panicking because you still don’t know what to wear! All your friends are at work, so you can’t call anyone.
  • Take a look at all your clothes toss your clothing around the room in a frantic search to find the perfect outfit. Nothing fits right/looks right/you don’t want to wear that. In one crashing moment, every stitch of clothing in your wardrobe is inadequate.
  • Race to the nearest store that sells clothing and tear through everything to find the perfect date outfit. STILL nothing is right!
  • Pick up something to eat and angrily/nervously chomp on it. Take a short walk before taking yourself home. Debate getting a manicure.

In the hour before you (should) roll out

  • freshen up and get gussied up (take a shower if needed, brush teeth, use perfume, do make up… and don’t forget mascara or to fill in your brows, if you need it!). Debate whether to use red or neutral coloured lipstick.
  • play music very loudly while doing this. “I’m Too Sexy” and “Brick House” run top of the list. anything else can be as edgy, pop-like, or as ratched as you wish. (does anyone know how to spell “ratchet”? I’ve seen various spellings, and have spelled it a few different ways myself. Let me know…)
  • Do all of the above while your nephew is bouncing around you and singing loudly to the music you’re playing.
  • (finally) put on something you already own that is super cute.

FINALLY:

  • switch purses. don’t forget the important stuff: ID, debit card, a bit of cash, lip balm so your lips don’t dry out… even if you don’t kiss, chapped lips aren’t nice to look at.
  • look over the outfit once again.
  • throw on some quick-drying nail polish. most likely, you bought something in your earlier escapade to find an outfit, and you don’t feel like spending more money on a manicure. plus, you’re kind of out of time.
  • go back and forth in your mind about canceling…
  • …then suck it up, spray your perfume in your doorway, and walk through it and out in a blaze of beautified glory.
  • be sure to stop traffic and garner looks as you pass by.
  • remember to breathe. it’s supposed to be fun… not to mention that you look fabulous dahhling ;)

enjoy your night!

Reader’s Block

I don’t know if all writers are automatically readers, but I certainly am.

My mom is a published author, and she always liked to read. She was a reader before she was a published author, but she always loved to write. The same can be said of me.

I never actually tracked the longest amount of time I’ve gone without reading a book, but it usually goes for a few months these days. I have what I like to call “reading spells”. When I do have long amounts of time where I don’t read, I’ll suddenly have the urge to read something.

When that urge hits, I’ll go through book after book for a couple of weeks. The librarians know my name because of all the books I reserve.

After the spell goes… it gets hard for me to finish a book, even if it’s good. The last book I read called “Four Kitchens” was a very good book; however, I was on the end of a reading spell. It took nearly 9 weeks to finish! Like I said, though, it was a good book. When I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down! Once I put it down, however, I just couldn’t bring myself to pick it back up!

Terrible, I know. It has everything to do with me being “done” with reading, not the book itself.

I actually thought the book was very good; I recommend “Four Kitchens”. It’s about a young woman from New York City that was a cooking student. She interns for a year at four different kitchens in different corners of the world. I loved her story, felt the way she felt in classes and when I worked in a kitchen myself, and related to how she felt at the end of her adventure in the epilogue.

Going back to reading, no specific book jerks me out of a spell when I don’t feel like reading. Sometimes just the urge to read is enough to jerk me out of a time when I don’t want to read.

Ready, Set, Done!

I talk to myself a lot at work. In fact, even outside of work, I talk to myself often.

I could be going senile at a young age, but I think that it has everything to do with my internal dialogue always going.

Whether I express what I’m feeling to someone or not, I’m thinking it. I’m always thinking something, but I’ll never admit to it. Sometimes I don’t want to tell anyone what I’m thinking; other times, I want to tell someone, and there’s no one around that I feel I can express my thoughts to. I also don’t want to seem like I’m complaining too much.

There are times, however, when things are too funny to keep to yourself… or when you know that one of your friends will appreciate what you’re thinking or what’s on your mind.

For instance, when it comes to attractive guys, I can always turn to C. She’s one of my coworkers, and even though she is dating someone, she still appreciates “God’s art”, as my mother calls it. Look, hey… it’s all good. God made things beautiful, and that includes some men. People don’t stop looking good just because you’ve found someone to call your own. You just admire and appreciate it, and move on.

Speaking of God’s art, I really haven’t had much luck in that department. When I was younger, I used to say I was an unofficial cougar because I attracted men younger than I really was. Now that I’m nearly 30, it seems like the age gap between me and the guys that approach me is getting larger!

It’s a good thing that I like younger guys or else that would be really depressing.

The most recent guy that has tried to talk to me is 20 years old. TWENTY YEARS OLD! I must be a lioness because I am steady attracting these cubs!

Well, at least he was a handsome thing. He had an amazing military jacket, and I told him so. He also said that he liked my hair. I did something to help him out the other day, and he responded by giving me his number. My girls at work saw this, and they were just a-cheesing away! They harassed me for half the day about it, but it was all in good fun. Of course, they ask me what’s going on with him… and to be honest, I don’t know if anything will happen.

He’s nearly 10 years younger than me, and I may not have thought to ask his age had he not asked how old I was. Heck, I forget my age half of the time. I don’t know what it’s supposed to feel like when you’re 29, but I rarely feel like I’m that age. Sometimes I try to forget; compared to the people I work with, I feel super old! They’re all around 10 years younger than me, and make me feel like I’ve failed at life somehow.

oh well.

Daily Prompt: Upturned Noses

The things that I’m snobbish about? *laughs* Do you have the time?

The main thing that I’m utterly snobbish about is food.

To say that I’m snobbish about food is an understatement. Don’t get it twisted: I’m not that insufferable and boorish person in a restaurant that expects champagne service when they have a beer budget. I’ll never yell at anyone if something isn’t served to my liking, and I’ll never stiff wait staff on the tip or act like I’m superior. There’s no need to behave in such a way.

However, I have gotten to a point where I don’t enjoy eating out much anymore. When I do go to eat out, there are places that I will and won’t go because I know what kind of food I’m getting there. If I do end up at a place where the food is not up to my standard, I’ll simply eat the one thing that I know I can tolerate best.

I also refuse to order French toast when I go out to eat. One day, I had the audacity to bake bread at home, and use said bread to make French toast. Well that was the end of eating French toast with any sort of bread or outside of the house. I have yet to find a restaurant around me that uses a freshly baked bread for their French toast. I’ve tried it at a couple of places, and have been utterly disappointed every time. It’s not that I think my way is so perfect; after having French toast with freshly baked bread, there’s no other acceptable way to eat it! I haven’t had French toast in over a year because I haven’t felt like baking bread, but I rest my case on that.

Though I am snobbish about most foods, French toast is one of the things I am the most particular about.

Don’t even get me STARTED on dessert.

On second thought, let’s go there.

I don’t have much of a sweet tooth; therefore, when I get a dessert, it HAS to be good! I may not eat another one for a month or two simply because  I don’t have much of a tolerance for sweets. I won’t eat cookies that are baked with margarine anymore because I think margarine is disgusting! I used to eat it, but cooking school changed that. All we used was butter in school, so when I tried to eat margarine while I was in cooking school, I gagged. I haven’t touched the vile substance since! I can now taste it in cookies, and I won’t eat them.

In fact, I only recently started eating chocolate chip cookies outside of the house.

I’m also very, very particular about brownies. I became that way when I found a scratch recipe for double chocolate brownies. You wanna talk about decadence? After tasting those brownies, you will want to integrate the name “brownie” into your name somehow. If they were a man, I’d be happily married to him.

It’s so horrible of me, but whenever my sister gets brownies and makes them from the box, I won’t eat them. Not all box mix brownies are bad, but it could be that they aren’t as chocolatey or dense as the ones from the recipe I have. Whatever it is, the smell gets me, then I break off a small piece, thinking that maybe I was being ridiculous. After tasting them, I get pissed off that I put it in my mouth, and put it back.

When it comes to dessert, I refuse to waste my calories on something that is any less than fan-fricken-tastic. Why should you? If calories were money, desserts are expensive! Don’t waste good calories just for the sake of having sweets! Make it count!

*gets off the soapbox and takes a brownie with her*

I feel bad about being so snobbish when it comes to food, but I shouldn’t. There is a quote that graces the wall on most Chick-fil-a locations that says this: “Food is essential to life. Therefore, make it good.” The founder is credited with saying those words. No truer quote has been spoken.

Whether you’re eating healthy or indulging, get the best quality of food that you can afford. Never favor quantity or quality; sometimes the integrity of the food is compromised to give you the amount that you want. One thing I love about France and the French people is that they love food as much as I do. They are unapologetically persnickety when it comes to food. Even those that grow and nurture the food take great pride in what they sell or raise to be sold. I’ve visited a couple of the farms, and each has said that they have the best of whatever it is that they make or sell.

They believe in quality, and so do I. French people go to the market every day. If I had my own car and place, I would haunt farmer’s markets. Why shouldn’t you buy fresh every day? I believe in keeping the staples around, but I think buying food daily is a good thing. Ideally, I wouldn’t freeze anything but water for ice cubes, freshly baked bread, and if I couldn’t grow my own veg or herbs, I’d buy them fresh regularly. I’m all about that life.

There are some things that require an air of high maintenance thinking or snobbery. If you’re going to be snobbish about something, food is perfectly acceptable. It’s what keeps you alive and going, after all.

I Decided To Say Hi

I got onto the 1 train in NYC after a long day of classes. I was wearing a fitted pair of yoga pants that came to the knee and a tee shirt with a flower print on the front. It was slightly see-through. I was also toting around a back pack, and my hula hoop.

Since I was only going 1 stop on the 1 train so that I could transfer to another train, I opted not to sit.

Across from me was a handsome young man. He had a smooth face, and I guessed that he was in his mid 20s at the most. It’s funny that I would guess this young man to be younger than me since most people guess me to be much younger than I am. For all I know, he was probably the same age as me.

Then again, knowing me and men, he was probably younger since I thought he was attractive. I’ve been doing this cougar thing for a long time, and apparently, I am now old enough to date 1/2 my age plus 10 years (I did the math. I was actually old enough for this 5 years ago, though I’m more comfortable with the idea now).

So the young man was sitting down and was well dressed, as if he was coming from an office. He looked at me when I got on the train. He looked up at me, and I grinned at him. He grinned back.

Normally, this is when the guy would probably look away or divert his attention to something else, or to other people on the subway train. Instead, he continued to look at me quite freely and openly. It wasn’t in that creepy way that makes a girl feel uncomfortable, but in an almost admiring and inquisitive sort of way. He looked like he wanted to talk to me.

Inwardly, I shook my head. If you’re going to do all this staring, there needs to be some talking done as well.

I said hi to the handsome stranger.

Surprisingly, he said hi back.

We talked for a couple of minutes, and he asked about the hula hoop I was carrying. It’s collapsible, and I had it on a strap. I was surprised that he knew what it was, though he had mentioned that he hadn’t seen one that comes apart.

Shortly after this conversation got started was as quickly as it ended; I was now at my stop, and it was time to say good bye to the dashing young gentleman. I bade him good bye, and slowly strode off the train.

As I stood on the platform, I was slightly conflicted. Should I have stayed on for a couple more stops and continued talking to him?

Did I leave at the right time, or did I leave the connection too soon?

Nothing came of it, and maybe nothing was meant to come of it. Perhaps the only thing that was meant to happen was for two people to connect in an old fashioned sense that was unhampered with technology. This archaic type of connection is what we were made for, after all.

Two months later, back in my hometown, I still remember that young man. I don’t know what it was about him, but it was nice to talk to a guy that was attractive and not be nervous about it. Normally, I would’ve never talked to a guy that cute without having palpitations.

Maybe being in a different city stirs up that boldness. Or… it was that rare occurrence when taking public transportation when you run into a person that’s just as open as you are to making a real world connection with another person.

As people, we yearn for that touch, whether it’s physical or just a point where you can briefly relate to another person.

We all have basic human needs: to eat, to sleep, to have shelter.

I also think that we crave the desire to be seen as a human to other humans. I think this is the greatest basic need.

In that moment, we realized it. That was enough.