Monday, November 14, 2011

A quick comment... on comments

Australia's Surfing Life has been kind enough to indulge my little writing fantasy by posting a few of my articles on their website. You may notice a little hiccup in the comment section where I seem to have disappointed one of my fans. She might not consider herself a 'fan' per se but as a writer I can take the occasional creative liberty. She left the following comment:

If you want to surf with your girlfriend, then get a girlfriend who HAS A SCRAP OF SELF RESPECT AND CONFIDENCE! Not someone who compares her learning curve to a retarded dog. Because girls LOVE surfing. Like me! And lots and lots of other women! (Not just lesbians either!!) Self-confident women love having adventures, especially outdoors.

Wanna surf with your girlfriend? Don't date an insecure little pansy.

Hey Surfing Life Magazine!!!: Please offer paid employment, income, and professional acknowledgement to ACTUAL WOMEN SURFERS who are great writers and experts at their craft! There's a lot of us out there, not just wannabe princesses...

Rather than wasting the time of ASL readers by responding on their website, I have saved my response for this blog (alright so I was told I would seem cooler if I just let it go)... so I'm letting go... by saying this:

Dear Evin,

I couldn’t help but notice that you seem quite upset. Seeing as we seemed to have started a friendly online correspondence I was hoping I could impose a few thoughts upon you…

Surly as a woman of great confidence and, if I may, a woman of the highest composure, you are aware that one need not draw attention to her confidence and self respect because it would be too obvious to do so. I find it much more subtle of a tactic to sleep with as many people as possible until you fill the deep void burning inside you.

As a one-time-bi-curious-when-drunk-abroad female myself, who am I to insult the lesbian population? I was merely pointing out that the homosexual female community tends to have a strong affinity to the outdoors- and they're typically well equipped for any adventure. You seem to identify yourself as a straight woman. To that I say, don't knock it 'til you've tried it, sister. 

And I’m not sure what fuels your aversion to golden retrievers, but I assure you that my dog Goldy was a canine of staggering intelligence and not ‘retarded’ as you have suggested. Admittedly, he did have a fondness for his own feces and he ate his leg until it was raw, but which one of us is perfect at the end of the day?

Surfer's Girlfriend

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Reality Check

Recently my fiance and I thought it would be fun to spend the evening brainstorming our impending 2013 trip to Indonesia and Australia... we had good wine, good conversation, and even better weed (Dad/future employer, if you're reading this I'm just kidding about the weed thing... and I'm also kidding about leaving indefinitely in 2013. I'm definitely 100% committed to whatever my future job may be). We were feeling loose and giddy with the excitement one can only feel when they talk about embarking on an incredible adventure when it happened. We found it, our dream home in Australia. We plan to rent an apartment when we're in Australia so we can have a home base and plenty of visitors. Take a look and tell me if your panties are still dry at the end of the photo tour (Dad, come to think of it, you really shouldn't be reading this)...

God, I love me some earthy woods. We fell hard and fast. This is our dream. A cute bungalow in Byron Bay, are you kidding me?! So we looked into the pricing... $500/week.... let's call that $2,000/month. So being the fancy college graduates that we are, we came up with a projected amount we can anticipate spending monthly. With all the new foods, new bars, new excitement, we estimate spending $4,000/month. If you'll recall, our total goal for the trip is $20,000. Meaning we could only last 5 months   NOT including airfare and the fact that we don't want to blow through all of our savings so we can, you know, get home, and survive and stuff. So... shit!

Reality has a cruel way of ruining a perfectly good plan.

But don't fret. Luckily we have backup plans to earn more money. First of all, we're getting married next year. Rather than register for teapots and dandelions, we plan to gently exploit all of our family and friends into giving us cold, hard cash. Secondly, I suppose I could technically get a job. Ugh, as in business casual attire, casual Fridays (if you're lucky), timed lunches, forced enthusiasm, cubicles, jammed up photo copiers, and overall feigned merriment. I will, of course, have to lie on my resume and say that I've been working this entire year. I think I just threw up a little.

At the end of the day, it's all worth it. I'm so grateful for my 10 months of unemployment and I'm ready to start kicking some corporate ass all in the name of quitting after a year. Except I have no idea where to start. Anyone hiring? I have a very strong resume... 

Thursday, October 13, 2011


I’m currently at this hippest hipster coffee joint in the nation- Intelligentsia in Venice, CA. I’m here because I’m a famous writer now and I wanted everyone to see how cool I am. So I took my (not mine at all- my fiance’s) MacBook and walked two blocks to see and, most importantly, be seen.

One of my all time favorites hobbies is to eavesdrop. It’s not the classiest of hobbies, but man does it get me off. I also like to look into peoples’ houses at night just to see what they’re up to. People fascinate me. We’re all so weird and just want to be loved at the end of the day (too sentimental?).

There are two people a few feet away from me who are fo sho on a first date. Does no one here have a job by the way? Are we all on unemployment nannying for cash on the side trying to get published as a writer? Why are you guys on a date at 2pm on a Thursday at a coffee shop? I absolutely require alcohol for any sort of date. That’s soooo hipster to keep the party dry. Girlfriend has some ambiguous tattoos on the back of her right arm and on her right forearm. He’s wearing a fedora, is unshaven, and has curly hair. Match made in hipster heaven. I have high hopes for these two. I just heard her say, “I love artistic freedom.” Yeah, we know sweet heart.  Still, I like these two.

I’m not even going to comment on this guy in the pink hat and bejeweled belt (yes, guy). He speaks for himself. Love it:

I’m officially so out of place. Though I must admit I’ve received many approving glances. I think it’s because of the MacBook and the fact that I’m not wearing make up. We’re all so raw. But seriously, I’m not coming back here for a while. I can’t get the wifi to work even though everyone else seems to be getting online just fine (I’m writing in a word doc right now) and …. Nerd alert… the music is way too loud. I guess I’ll never be a hipster. 

Monday, September 19, 2011


I really don't have anything in mind to write about today, I just feel the need to post something. If I post something then I feel better about my day. I feel better about my future. I just feel better. Besides, if I don't post anything then the most productive thing I will have accomplished today is plucking a black hair from my chest. Yes, I found a black hair on my chest. I'm blonde, 26, and up until this point I was under the impression that I was female. But I still found a black hair on my chest. And I have to live with that. Now so do you. Sorry. So here I am posting- starting to feel better already.

I want to be one of those people who sets their minds to something and then they actually do it. I've been like that with a lot of things in my life. I wanted to go to college in LA, I made it happen. And for an authentic Mid-westerner that's no small feat. Then, I decided it was imperative that I spend 6 months in Paris, you know, to learn French. After college, It was London for 6 months. After that, I wanted to work in the art industry. I made these things happen. These are literal dreams that I made true. I thought of them in my head and then I DID it. Why does that seem like such a distant concept? Is it because I have been raped by reality? I honestly feel molested and frail and ashamed. I want to curl up in a ball in bed and eat 2 everything bagels toasted with vegetable cream cheese while watching The Simpsons. I realllly want to do that. But I did that on Friday. You can't do that on Friday and then again on Monday. You just can't.

So today, Monday, is one of those days where I say to myself "I'm going to accomplish something- I'm going to make active steps towards my goals." Of course it helps to have clear goals. Mine are kind of murky, confused versions of goals. But I'm taking steps towards them (I think). Today I went for a jog on the beach- 26 minutes without stopping. I think that adds up to 5.7 miles. That was an active step towards my goal of wanting to become completely emaciated. Then I nannied for 2 hours and when I got home I put away that pile of clothes that somehow became a damp mountain of 'clean' clothes mixed with some not-so-clean clothes. Now I'm posting. This is an active step towards wanting to write. Technically, I have achieved that goal because I am writing. So I guess this is what success looks like? I thought it would feel slightly different. Oh well. Who am I to argue with logic? I think I know just how to celebrate. Maybe I'll get extra cream cheese this time...

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


I just finished watching the Glee Project. Ahh-mayy-zing. I loved every second of it. Did I sob like a pup torn from his mother's teat? None of your business. I loved both of the winners and couldn't decide who I wanted to win more. So exciting. The only thing is I noticed a strange and inappropriate reaction to the season finale of the show.... I was raging jealous the entire time. I'm talking like knot-in-my-stomach-heart-pounding jealousy. As if they were somehow my competition??? It makes no sense. But, as my therapist says, you can't control how you feel. But it made me realize- this isn't the first time I've experienced irrational jealousy. Lately, in fact, it's been happening a lot.

Here is a list of things/people/situations that make me green with envy:

  1. Katy Perry. Weird, right? She's just so fucking successful and her songs are so catchy. What a bitch. Now, why I can't simply just enjoy her catchy summery tunes- I don't know. I don't understand it. 
  2. My boyfriend. For multiple reasons. A, he weighs less than I do. B, the whole penis thing. I definitely have penis envy. It's just SO much easier. I pee all the time and it's a huge hassle not to mention waste of toilet paper (I'm actually serious). C- the head nod thing. He just gets so much more respect from grown ups than I do and I'm totally jealous. 
  3. Louis CK. Love him, but jealous of him. Maybe I'm only jealous of people I really love? Maybe Katy Perry, my boyfriend, and Louis CK and I are all meant to be one big happy family? I'm jealous of him because he's a total dud, the poor guy, but he's made it. Do you have any idea how hard it is to make it as a comedian? He did it. He found the one thing that he's better at than other people, and he's made himself successful. That makes me crazy. I'm so fucking jealous. I don't know what it is that I can do better than other people. And even if I DID know, how do I make money from it? I want to write, as I've mentioned, but I'm wildly inexperienced and I have no idea how to make money writing. 
  4. Drew Carey. I'm from Ohio, I LOVE the Price is Right, But who gets to stand up there hosting every day, hm? who? not me that's for damn sure. 
  5. Whoever married Taylor Hanson. 
  6. Anyone who can sing well- especially anyone who has performed on Broadway.
  7. Basically anyone who has achieved success of any kind. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


Home sweet home- I just arrived back home to LA after visiting my Dad in San Diego for a few days.  I've been dreading our visit because my dad has a fun habit of 'working me over' a.k.a calling me out on any/all of my failures over the past 26 years. But I have to say, he was on his best behavior. He was very supportive of my desire to pursue a vocation that I'm passionate about, which, frankly- shocked the hell out of me. We had a good time, and I'm lucky to have him (tear). 

At lunch today, my dad and I encountered a little tart. His name is Chad, and he was our waiter.  It turns out that Chad is a recent graduate from USD and he's working as a waiter 'while he figures out what he wants to do with his life'... definitely something I can relate to. I've spent plenty of time waiting tables and I'm (as you may have noticed) still trying to figure out what I want to do with my life. Then Chad said something truly profound, "I'm pretty sure that I am going to take some time to travel for a while before I do anything." I fell in love right then and there. With his idea, I mean. Traveling to London after I graduated college was the best decision I could have made for myself at the time. After inquiring a bit further it turns out that Chad wants to live 6 months in Portugal- to further improve the Portuguese he learned while studying abroad in Brazil. From the depths of my soul I find myself hoping that Chad does, in fact, follow through with this dream. I can sleep better at night knowing that people are out there transforming their lofty ideas into reality. The truth is, picking up and traveling can be scary- especially when you don't have a plan. There are always a million reasons not to do something and you can reason your way out of doing pretty much anything exciting or at all risky. I love hearing stories or meeting people who defy all of that and just go for it. I gave the hostess $20 to give to him after I left and to tell him to go for it. I would have given more, but I'm unemployed (as you may have noticed). Hopefully he'll view it as a sign to not pussy out. 

Chad, do you by any chance read my blog? For these purposes I'm going to assume that you do. Good. First of all, thank you for reading. Secondly, I hope you got the $20 I left for you and the hostess didn't snake me out of my drinking money. Thirdly, I realize that $20 isn't much, but I hope you take it as a sign to follow your dream. It's really important to me to know that people like you exist in this world. If I can be honest with you- and I feel that I can- I've met a lot of pansies lately and I'm starting to lose faith. You don't seem like a pansy though.  I mean, you're on the skinny side, but you definitely seem to know what you want. I respect that. Just please promise me you won't give into the pressure to get a job right away and you'll find a way to pursue your dream. If I come back in a few months and ask about you only to find out you're working at some bullshit insurance company I will freak out. I may even come to your office. I know you don't know me and I may be coming on a bit strong, but I think you have many beautiful gifts to share with the world. Don't dim your light under the florescent glare of corporate America. Be brave and beautiful. 

Friday, August 19, 2011

Sex Sells

As I've mentioned, writing  is my current professional and creative pursuit. When I'm not acting as Mary Poppins or watching the Glee Project on Hulu I'm putting all my efforts into writing. I love this blog. Meaning I love writing on this blog. It's my very own public-diary-stream-of-consciousness outlet. It helped to keep me from throwing myself in front of a bus on numerous occasions- like when we would get countless reprimanding memos about God-knows-what, or told I was to be making cold calls all day. Now that I'm unemployed, this blog (believe it or not) gives me some kind of purpose. If I am able to at least make a post I know I will have reached 3's of people. I know what Mother Theresa and Ghandi were all about. I get it.

But wouldn't it be nice if my blog could reach TENs of people!? I mean a girl can dream, right? And guess what? I have a PLAN on how to do this. And, dare I say it? A fucking good plan. My roommate (also known as, depending on how things are going that day, my fiance) also has a blog. I think it's about... well no one really knows what it's about. But if you look through his blog, you'll see the occasional naked lady. Those posts always get 10 times the amount of hits that his other posts get (the other posts being ones with actual content). So, do you see where this is headed?! I think you do. Come with me on this journey to fame and money. 

Here it goes: 

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Case of the Tuesdays :(

I've realized that most of my recent posts have been about the ups and downs of unemployment. Which, makes sense, seeing as I am technically unemployed. But the last thing I want to do is alienate my employed fans (that's right- fans). After all, those behind the cubicle walls of doom, those who have to sneak a peak at their favorite websites while trying not to get caught, who have their email accounts blocked at work, who have 30 minute lunches and 45 minute commutes, YOU are the ones who really need some comic relief. Unfortunately, I won't be able to provide that.

What I can do, however, is offer you some personally perfected tips on how to waste time in the work place. While some may think of it as laziness, I happen to view it as survival. Today is Tuesday, arguably the worst day of the week. It's only slightly worse that Mondays because you aren't sandwiched in by the weekend like Mondays. And on Tuesday, you still have Wednesday, Thursday, AND Friday to get through. You poor souls. Don't worry, I'm here. Think of me as your guardian... blogger? Think of me as whatever you want, but I prefer something with an edgy vibe like 'Escape Artist'... none of this angel business.

Here are my top ways to SURVIVE in the workplace:

  • An obvious one, but take as many trips to the bathroom as humanly possible. Drink tons of coffee, water, tea whatever (especially if you happen to get this stuff for free at work) so you have to go to the bathroom every 30 minutes (I happen to have an abnormally tiny bladder- if you can hold your urine better than a 93 year-old man, first of all- congrats to you, secondly drink even more liquids). If you have the option to go to a bathroom further away, great! More time away from the desk. Walk slowly, talk with people in the hallway. This will not only get you a much needed break, but certainly increase your popularity around the office. 
  • I used to download books for free online, copy and paste them into a word document so it looked more work-related, then go to town. This is my personal favorite. You won't find many current books for free online, but tons of classics. By far the best discovery was Stephenie Meyer's (author of the Twilight series... no judgement please) Midnight Sun. It's Edward's account of the first novel- only partially completed, but it's hundreds of pages of cheap thrills. Enjoy. 
  • Leave 5 minutes early for lunch, come back 5 minutes late. You deserve this 10 minutes. Though, not a great idea for those who have to punch a clock (sorry! ).  You guys should drink even more and go to the bathroom every 25 minutes.
  • Start a blog (HELLO!) about the horrible atrocities you suffer daily. Even if google analytics says that you only get 10 hits to your page a day with a high bounce rate, who cares?? It's the only way I didn't throw myself out the window everyday. Oh and if you use blogspot and minimize the page, it almost looks like you're tying an email. 
  • And, (do I really need to say this??) don't use all your sick days when you're actually sick!! I mean if you have a low fever and sniffles, you may as well go to work anyway. Save your sick days for the days you fear you may murder a co-worker or a heinously annoying client. Your sick days are survival days.  Treat them like gold. 
Any other tips I didn't think of?????!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Cray Cray

Although I hate to admit it, I have reason to believe that I have become 'that girl.' 

Allow me to explain... As I've mentioned in other posts, one of the biggest perks of being unemployed (while still having health insurance-- something I'm very grateful for) is that I have ample time to get anything/everything checked out. Wake up with a new mole? Get your ass to a dermatologist- no problem. Your sugar addiction for the past 25 years caused an aggressive cavity that makes your eyes tear up in pain? You can go to the dentist the same day. When you are working 40+ hours a week it can be a total nightmare to try to schedule these types of appointments. Such is no longer the case for me. In fact, I may or may not have gone a bit overboard. I leaf through our health insurance packet as if it were a menu at my favorite restaurant and I know someone else is picking up the tab. Ohhh I can get up to $1000 in acupuncture?? Did you know facials can technically be considered a dermatological procedure?! I'm pretty sure they cover the lap band- and I would be lying if I told you I haven't at least toyed with the idea of gaining 120 lbs then making an awesome come back by losing 130 lbs. I have it all planned out... 

So when I found out that my health insurance covers UNLIMITED psychiatric appointments I was all over that like white on rice.  I found myself a bougie, gay (?), part-time therapist, part-time yoga instructor in Brentwood and I've been in heaven ever since. In all honesty, of all the various doctors that I've been spoiling myself with, this one is definitely a necessity. I won't say that I'm bat shit crazy... maybe just bird poop crazy. My symptoms include (but are not limited to) crippling anxiety, occasional bouts of depression, more anxiety, sprinkled with a dash of hypochondria, and (just to paint you a picture) topped with more anxiety. It's a fun little mix of insanity. My boyfriend finds it hilarious

I've seen drastic improvements since beginning therapy a few months ago. If my anxiety (did I mention I have anxiety?) was a 9 out of 10 before, it's now a 3 or 4. Which is a HUGE improvement to my overall quality of life- and, come to think of it, my boyfriend's as well. He no longer keeps the razors and booze in a 'safe place.' BUT.... I've noticed one tinsy, tiny draw back. You know how annoying it is when someone has a kid and all they talk about is their goddamned kid? As if you care? It's so offensive I can't stand it. Well, unfortunately, I seem to have become 'that girl' only with my therapist. I literally don't think I am capable of having a 10 minute conversation without bringing him up about 307 times. It has to be so annoying for everyone around me. I was recently on the phone talking to a childhood friend who just got engaged and this is actually something I caught myself saying, "well, my therapist tells me that in life we can't control pain. The only thing we can control is suffering, meaning the way to react and deal with pain." UGH. First of all, why the hell I brought up pain and suffering when she called to tell me the happiest news of her life- I still don't fully understand. Secondly, I noticed my tone when I said this to her. It was a balance between serene, forceful, and condescending.  I basically have never sucked more than in that moment. 

But the problem is I can't stop. It's just too exciting! FINALLY, after 26 years, I am able to understand my insanity. It's fantastic. I mean, don't you want to know why you're so off your rocker? And, for the love of God, don't pretend for one second you're not insane. The scariest people in the world are the people who don't recognize their insanity. But I digress. My point is- I will actively try to be less annoying with the whole "I'm-so-enlightened-because-I-go-to-therapy-once-a-week" thing- and I will try not to bring it up in conversation so much. 

And besides, my therapist says that it's totally normal to behave this way. 

Friday, July 29, 2011

Organized Chaos

I have to say that these past 6 months of unemployment have been exactly what I needed. Admittedly, this time hasn't been all fun and games (just some of it). It's been stressful and scary and occasionally shameful, but I've recently realized that I like the chaos and unpredictability of my life right now. I'm 26 years old and I will admit that I don't know what the fuck I am doing. There. I said it. Why is it so hard to admit that we sometimes don't have a plan, or don't want a plan? (And by the way... if my life ever does become regimented and predictable you have my permission to shoot me- you know... with a gun). This affectionate attitude towards disarray is not to be confused with complacency. I am here, in the thick of it, brawling against my own insecurities and society's judgements- fighting like hell to figure out what I want to do with my life.  I ask myself over and over- what is my passion? What would I do if I could do anything?

And, in the midst of all this confusion, I have discovered that there is something so wonderful about not taking the shortcut. There's a personal transformation that can only occur while your knee deep in your own insecurities and fears. I've been presented with 2 perfectly respectable job opportunities since I've been laid off. But both felt like a cop-out. Both felt like I was giving into the fear of unemployment and taking the easy way out. I know I made the right choice by sticking this out. I have decided to give myself the gift of chaos and I give myself permission to take the scenic route.

The most insane part of all of this is I do know what I want to do. I've known for a long time, it just took me this long to admit it. I want to be (brace yourselves... or yourself I should say... I think I only have one 'regular' reader... Heyyy Nat)..... a writer. As in I want to write. Professionally. Preferably for money at some point. Not because I feel like I'm unstoppably talented or anything. Nor do I think that the sweet lord has bestowed upon me a gift and it is my duty to share this gift with the world (Nat, feel free to disagree with any of this). I just feel that if you are drawn to something, and something feeds your soul in a way that is new and exciting, don't you owe it to yourself to see what it's all about? 

I have this image- nightmare I should say- of myself at 35 sitting at my desk at my fancy, formidable, nod-worthy, career-type job and I'm just a little bit dead inside. I have shaped my life in a way that many people respect and would expect of me. Maybe I needed to take the job because I have a husband and a kid (ugh again, permission to shoot me DEAD if this happens. The kid part. Not the husband part. Love you babe) and I felt like it was the right thing to do. And I always wonder what would have happened if I had the balls to try writing? What would have happened if I really went for it? What would have happened if I had been able to put aside my fear of failure and embarrassment? (Just a note: I am tooootally mortified to admit that I want to write. I sort of feel like the asshole who comes to LA and thinks they're going to become an actor. Or someone who's mom told them they were pretty one time too many and now they really believe that they are going to become a model. And who knows? People come to LA and successfully model and act.... and write... all the time. But, I mean, come on. This is just slightly less humiliating than the time my brother walked in on me masturbating with a sock when we were kids). So there it is. My nightmare. Sitting at my desk in the future always tormented by asking 'what if?' 

Since I've presented my worst nightmare... I suppose it's only fair to confess my deepest dream when it comes to writing. I think that everyone, myself of course included, have a deep desire to really be seen and understood. I love authors who write about their experiences, their flaws, their insecurities. It’s an unnerving and exhilarating experience when you can find a book or author who can speak for you. Raw honesty is the best part of reading, and presumably, writing. So that's the dream. I unveil parts of myself through writing and people are somehow moved by my experiences. 

Oh and since we're dreaming, I also want a HUGE rack. 

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Losing Youself

Perhaps it has shown through my writing that I am in the process of trying to find myself. I cringe even typing the words "find myself." It's so cliche and frankly I'm disappointed that I have the same problems as everybody else. I realize that sounds bad, but isn't this why I went to a good college? I like to think I'm resourceful and intelligent, I'm not afraid to crack the occasional joke, I feel something when I pass a homeless person on the street. Basically, I'm trying to say that I'm not a total shit person. And you know... while looks aren't everything I was hoping that my Kate Moss figure and Zooey Deschanel charm would be my ticket to the top. I've been led to believe that this is the winning combination that leads to unparalleled success. I feel totally duped. 

A common discussion amongst my friends and I is how we felt so ill-prepared when we were shoved out into the real world at 22. No one told us it was going to be hard. Seriously- no one. Everyone just fucking lied to us for 22 years. Our parents, our teachers, our relatives, our modeling coaches. So now many of us are struggling with the "wait.... so am I NOT special after all?!" dilemma. And it's a bitter pill.

BUT once we realize that our shinning career isn't going to be delivered to us overnight via FedEx, we now have the opportunity to discover what it is we're meant to do. We will stumble and fall over and over. But we get back up because we, as a generation, are resilient. We don't want to settle. Most of us don't want to be in a cubicle with florescent lighting and EOM goals. We want freedom and choices. We want to be our own bosses. We want to live.

This article was just presented to me and it definitely spoke volumes about what I am talking about. I found it inspirational- hopefully you will too.  David Brooks, a columnist at The New York Times wrote,

"Over the past few weeks, America’s colleges have sent another class of graduates off into the world. These graduates possess something of inestimable value. Nearly every sensible middle-aged person would give away all their money to be able to go back to age 22 and begin adulthood anew.

But, especially this year, one is conscious of the many ways in which this year’s graduating class has been ill served by their elders. They enter a bad job market, the hangover from decades of excessive borrowing. They inherit a ruinous federal debt.
More important, their lives have been perversely structured. This year’s graduates are members of the most supervised generation in American history. Through their childhoods and teenage years, they have been monitored, tutored, coached and honed to an unprecedented degree.
Yet upon graduation they will enter a world that is unprecedentedly wide open and unstructured. Most of them will not quickly get married, buy a home and have kids, as previous generations did. Instead, they will confront amazingly diverse job markets, social landscapes and lifestyle niches. Most will spend a decade wandering from job to job and clique to clique, searching for a role.
No one would design a system of extreme supervision to prepare people for a decade of extreme openness. But this is exactly what has emerged in modern America. College students are raised in an environment that demands one set of navigational skills, and they are then cast out into a different environment requiring a different set of skills, which they have to figure out on their own.
Worst of all, they are sent off into this world with the whole baby-boomer theology ringing in their ears. If you sample some of the commencement addresses being broadcast on C-Span these days, you see that many graduates are told to: Follow your passion, chart your own course, march to the beat of your own drummer, follow your dreams and find yourself. This is the litany of expressive individualism, which is still the dominant note in American culture.
But, of course, this mantra misleads on nearly every front.
College grads are often sent out into the world amid rapturous talk of limitless possibilities. But this talk is of no help to the central business of adulthood, finding serious things to tie yourself down to. The successful young adult is beginning to make sacred commitments — to a spouse, a community and calling — yet mostly hears about freedom and autonomy.
Today’s graduates are also told to find their passion and then pursue their dreams. The implication is that they should find themselves first and then go off and live their quest. But, of course, very few people at age 22 or 24 can take an inward journey and come out having discovered a developed self.
Most successful young people don’t look inside and then plan a life. They look outside and find a problem, which summons their life. A relative suffers from Alzheimer’s and a young woman feels called to help cure that disease. A young man works under a miserable boss and must develop management skills so his department can function. Another young woman finds herself confronted by an opportunity she never thought of in a job category she never imagined. This wasn’t in her plans, but this is where she can make her contribution.
Most people don’t form a self and then lead a life. They are called by a problem, and the self is constructed gradually by their calling.
The graduates are also told to pursue happiness and joy. But, of course, when you read a biography of someone you admire, it’s rarely the things that made them happy that compel your admiration. It’s the things they did to court unhappiness — the things they did that were arduous and miserable, which sometimes cost them friends and aroused hatred. It’s excellence, not happiness, that we admire most.
Finally, graduates are told to be independent-minded and to express their inner spirit. But, of course, doing your job well often means suppressing yourself. As Atul Gawande mentioned during his countercultural address last week at Harvard Medical School, being a good doctor often means being part of a team, following the rules of an institution, going down a regimented checklist.
Today’s grads enter a cultural climate that preaches the self as the center of a life. But, of course, as they age, they’ll discover that the tasks of a life are at the center. Fulfillment is a byproduct of how people engage their tasks, and can’t be pursued directly. Most of us are egotistical and most are self-concerned most of the time, but it’s nonetheless true that life comes to a point only in those moments when the self dissolves into some task. The purpose in life is not to find yourself. It’s to lose yourself.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Head Nod

You know the feeling when you're having a really "adult" conversation?? You have your big girl panties on, you opted for a full-bodied pinot noir instead of a beer, and the eye contact is direct and intense. Perhaps you're talking to your boyfriend's mother's successful 60 year-old Persian friend, or your Dad's lawyer wife, or your old boss from when you were a marketing intern in college (all completely made up examples by the way).  The conversation will go to the usual places- How are you? How is your family? Isn't this place nice? Oh I see you're having the pinot as well... ugh you should know that I'm not really listening and even though I'm maintaining strong eye contact, I have wickedly powerful peripheral vision and I'm looking for a way out.

The conversation will inevitably turn to profession. Now... my boyfriend has a job that old people fucking love. When they hear about his job, you can tell it's the closest they've come to an orgasim in years. Young people too, but octogenarians are really his demographic. He gets the head nod every time. You know... when he tells people what he does the other person is nodding their head up and down, their eyes light up, and you can see the excitement growing in their expression. He has about 500,700 head nod points from this year alone. He has the type of job that comes with the best health insurance, 401K,  great title, long-term stability, ability to grow within the company, company jet, free dry cleaning, he's called sir at work, porn isn't blocked on his computer, blah blah. Yes, of course, I'm proud of him and he's worked hard- whatever. When it comes down to it I'm just raging jealous of the head nods. When I tell my story do you think the older Persian lady is brimming with excitement? Umm no. I get the awkward pause followed by a 'reassuring' pat on the shoulder. And then a part of my soul dies forever. 

As much as I drown in my own self-pity and despair within the corporate world, I would be lying if I told you I don't miss the head nods. It's like heroin. Once you've felt it, you always kind of want it again no matter how much pain and self-loathing is involved in getting there. The feeling of acceptance and accomplishment is addictive. But the reality is, there is something exhilarating about not knowing what I'm going to do with myself. I feel more alive than I did sitting, starring at a computer for 9 hours a day. Oh fuck... and never having to make a cold call again in my life is worth giving up head nods forever. 

So to all those people out there fighting to figure out their destiny, clawing their way out of corporate America to find something that feeds their soul not just their ego, I raise my beer to you... and to you I nod my head. 

(I just told this guy that I'm unemployed)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Everyone's Doing It

One of the many perks of unemployment is you have the time to get caught up with various doctor appointments. I've been to the dermatologist twice- you know, to get things checked out. And today I went to the dentist. To say that I'm horrified of the dentist is like saying that the KKK and the black community have a history of differing opinions... it's a slight understatement.

I dread the dentist because I can't get numb when getting a cavity filled. And with my violent addiction to anything containing sugar, I have no shortage of cavities. It's especially fun when the dentist doesn't believe me when I say that I'm not numb. I get it. No one likes the dentist. I'm sure they get plenty of over-anxious patients who exaggerate. I assure you that I have never blown anything out of proportion in my entire life. Ever. Once you mention that you can feel pain your credibility is shot to hell. The dentist automatically puts you in the 'anxious patient' category and you can expect to be spoken to like a tardsy child for the rest of your visit.

"Now- you'll see me handling things that look like a drill, but that doesn't mean that it is a drill."

Thanks, Sweetheart, but I didn't expect you to drill a hole in my tooth with a tampon. But I have to say today my perception of the dentist office changed forever. I went in to get a cavity filled this morning. I put it off for over a year and finally caved. When the receptionist recommended that I request nitrous oxide, I took her advice. And I am indebted to her for the rest of my life. I just had the ride of a lifetime. It was epic. I went from dreading my dental visit to never wanting to leave. I sat in the chair and all the sudden I vividly remembered all my dreams from the past week. I thought of my best friends. I thought of future blog posts. I thought of all the places I want to travel to. I just felt... warm and free and alive! It was amazing. And this is coming from someone who tried shrooms for the first time last week (I'm really crossing my fingers that my FBI agent of a father never gets a link to this blog). By the time the dentist asked me if I was ready for her to start drilling, I would have consented to a series of strangers offering to gently slide their thumbs into my rectum. Just do yourself a favor and stop brushing your teeth before bed. You're welcome. 

Friday, March 25, 2011

Pants on Fire

I can very seriously say that I am a truly honest person. I'm not a good liar, I have no desire to lie to people, and it's just my nature to be forthcoming. In fact, I may be bit too honest. I'm sure the significant other would be thrilled if every now and then I omitted the occasional truth. But alas, it's not my style (see "The  Mole Incident"). Take me as I am, sister, for better or for worse.

Unless, of course, it has anything to do with getting a job, keeping a job, or working in general. I can't quite describe what happens to the "professional me" but the change is drastic. Let's just say that I become a shameless pathological liar. I have to admit that I am phenomenal at the interview process. I have literally landed every single job that I've interviewed for. When thinking about why or how this happens I realized what it is that makes me so hireable. I simply lie my ass off. I know exactly what employers want to hear and how they want to hear it. Follow these guidelines and you're golden:

1. Easy one: Always give a firm handshake when making introductions while making clear eye contact and smiling. Say "it's a pleasure to meet you" not "nice to meet you". Pleasure is classier. Make sure not to overdo it with the firm handshake- no one's looking for a ball-crushing lesbian.

2. Somehow manage to throw into the conversation that you are looking for something very long term. You are never looking to leave. You will never move. You will never have children. You live to work. You love long hours. You're looking for a career not a job. You're self-motivated. You'll do whatever it takes to get the job done. (this is about the time when I fear the lightening coming to strike me dead)

3. Delivery is key. You must always carry an aura of "cool confidence". Again, eye contact is key with this. Try to never say "umm" or "yeah". Use works like certainly and feasibility. You're energetic but articulate.

4. Once you have them drooling over your staggering professionalism- you give them a sense of urgency. You never want them to think you need the job. This is very important. You want them to know that you are very interested in the position and very excited about the opportunity. Their your first choice, but you don't need them. This is when I hit them with another lie... "I should let you know that I do I have an offer pending with another company". BAM. This is a winner for so many reasons. A- They know that you are in high demand, B-This is leverage to get the salary you want,  and C- They are more likely to act quickly with an offer. It's my favorite move.

5. Obviously make sure you look incredible. I like to go with a 3-piece black pin-stripe dress suit with killer heels. Men will think you're hot (you're hired) and women will appreciate that you're covered up.

SO yeahh. See what I mean? I hope karma and the Universe aren't too upset with me. Again, it's only the professional me that lies uncontrollably. And I'm pretty honest about lying.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Moley Moley Moley

Today marks the 2 month date since I was laid off.  I'm trying to think of my accomplishments over the past 60 days...


Well, I did do a LOT of laundry. I organized my closest, I've sewed some buttons, visited the grocery store about 48 times. I can't tell you how grateful I am when we run out of something. We're out of garlic?! I'll have to run out and get some right away. That sad visit to Ralph's will be my greatest accomplishment of the day. And I'll be honest about something else. Getting the mail is simply exhilarating. It has to be my favorite part of my day.

Believe me, I'm not complaining. I think about my mental state 3 months ago and I cringe. I was always tired, always on edge, overwhelmed with anxiety, never had any time for myself. Clearly that's changed. But there has to be balance. The other day I found a mole that I didn't know I had. I never noticed it before because it's in a rather... complicated... part of my body. I obsessed over it for hours- clearly it's melanoma. How could a creepy mole appear in an area  that I can positively guarantee you has never seen the sun??? When I told my boyfriend that we had to make each moment count because my days are numbered he asked the question that changed everything. "How the hell did you find that?" I had to explain that since I've been laid off I've had a lot of time on my hands... even time to conduct full body mole checks with a mirror after my showers...daily. He gave me the saddest look. A look of pure horror mixed with fear and concern. That was the moment I decided that I need to get a job.

Not that I'll be chaining myself to a cubicle again. As long as the unemployment checks keep pouring in I'm looking for cash jobs only. I need to make about $2,000 cash/month to supplement the unemployment money. So what's the easiest way for a female in their 20's to make cash? If it weren't for the aforementioned mole I think we all know I'd be naked in some guys basement in the Valley right about now. Seeing as that dream has been shattered I'm going to look for nanny jobs. I'm actually going to nanny tonight for 3 hours ($45 making in rainnn). In addition to the numbing boredom I'm motivated to start working ASAP because I don't want to blow through my savings. The Great Escape is about a year and a half away!

Oh and don't worry- this won't become a Nanny-Diary-type blog. Children freak me out.

Monday, February 14, 2011

SO Now What!?!

Ah, the inevitable question. After a lay-off this along with the 'so how's your job search going?' question are unavoidable. I suppose it might not occur to the average person that a 'job search' would interfere with my afternoon movie marathons. My dad literally called me 2 days after he found out I got laid off to ask me about my five-year plan. No joke. Umm, if you offered me $10,000 to give you my 5 day plan I would have some difficulty. This is my favorite part of that conversation... My dad adds his opinion that I have gone wrong in the past because I have worked for smaller companies and I should really consider going after something "more corporate".  (pause for effect). Good to know we're on the same page. I was tempted to email him a link to this blog and turn off my phone for a month. 

So what is my plan? My plan is just this: I will travel to visit my family in Indiana, and then my mother who lives overseas. That takes me to the end of March when I will be back in LA.  At that point I will find whatever job(s) will pay cash so I can ride the system as much as possible (unless of course you work for the State of CA in which case I have been open and available for work, I have been actively looking for work, and I have not left the country at all). Perhaps I'll become the super nanny of LA. Disregard my open disdain of small children and I'm sure it'll become annoying to constantly dodge sexual advances from frustrated husbands who aren't getting laid by their perma-pregnant wives, but the pay is good and most importantly- it's cold hard cash. I nannied in college and to this day that was my most lucrative job. Or perhaps a bohemian book store in Venice? The sky is my limit. As long as there aren't cubicles involved I'm happy. 

We're leaving in 2 years for our trip around the world. Does that mean I need to re-enter life behind a cubicle to become a cerebral prostitute again? What if I can make just as much money nannying for the next two years? Bike rides to yoga, jogs on the beach, travel whenever I want, energy for nightly shags (unless of course I'm too tired after yoga).... sounds pretty incredible to me. 

My dad will be so proud. 

Friday, February 11, 2011


Sooo where to begin??? I apologize for my 2 week absence but once I explain myself to you I think we'll be juuuust fine. Here we go...

18 days ago I walk into work- coming down from my weekend, stiffled by an overwhelming feeling of dread, filled with anxiety- just a normal Monday. The Friday before, I had a serious talk with Sue (the owner), James, and our head of HR. They made it very clear that I was to begin making sales calls on Monday. So there I was, ready for battle. I obsessed all weekend about the goddamn calls. But I have to say, I got to a good place. I decided that the Universe clearly intended for me to make cold calls for some ungodly reason. But you have to trust the Universe. Maybe I murdered a baby in my past life and I was being punished accordingly? Makes sense.

As soon as I arrive James tells me that we need to speak with the Head of HR- just the three of us. Yeah gurl, that's right. Just the three of us. As we all know I'm no novice when it comes to getting canned. Let's just say if you get pulled into HR first thing in the morning with your immediate supervisor it's usually not regarding your candidicy for employee of the month. So there we were. I knew exactly what was coming. I was calm as a newborn suckling mother's milk. Silence. Finally HR girl goes for it.

"We all talked after our meeting on Friday and we've decided to make today your last day."

Holy shitpenis. My heart skips a beat. Is it true?? This is the moment that I have been plotting since I stepped foot inside of my tiny cubicle. She goes on to say it's not me, it's the position that doesn't work. They're taking my position and making it two full-time positions. One entry level admin, one highly experienced sales person. I'm pretty sure she said something about everyone being cripilingly devistated to see me go- something about I'm the most attractive person the company has ever seen. I can't recall. I was too busy planning the rest of my life. I said my goodbyes, took my severace check, some office supplies (don't you dare judge me- I just lost my job and stamps are like $4 each these days) and off I went to unleash my newfound freedom.

SO these past two weeks have been filled with bike riding to yoga, afternoon movie marathons, and meeting friends for drinks. I even applied for a job. That's right- working part-time for a sculpture garden. I'll keep you updated. As hard as it is to make myself get behind a computer, I'll do it for you. That's love right there.

Here's to hoping you all get laid off soon!! :) WOOOOOO HOOOOOO

Friday, January 21, 2011

dammmmmmmn it

So the day has finally arrived. I knew this day was coming. I could smell it. I could feel it in my bones. And I was right.

Sue pulled me into her office just now. I knew it was serious because the head of HR was already in the meeting along with James who was quivering in the corner. Somehow I got the feeling that I was not getting promoted. Long story short- If I don't make sales calls I will be fired.

I realized as I was sitting there that the only thing that I haven't tried yet is actually making the sales calls. So will I cross over to the dark side? The answer is yes, yes I will. I will whore my services from 8:30am-5:30pm 5 days a week. I'm officially a prostitute. I will make the sales calls beginning next week. This blog may suffer from my productivity, but I will always return. I will come back to you.

Goodbye for now. (Let's be honest I'll see you Monday)

Monday, January 17, 2011

I Have A Dream...

As an African American, I am deeply offended by the fact that I am sitting and writing this blog post from..... (pause for effect)........ WORK. That's right. I'm at work. On Martin Luther King Jr Day. What kind of fucked up world is this where employers overlook the significance of this historic day?! Oh- is the owner of the company here? You know because alllll her employees most certainly are here (except the smart ones who are 'sick' today) and it would only be fair. It's funny. I haven't seen her. All day. I heard something about a ski trip. Interesting.

I heard the best story about this company. Apparently a few years ago our company did have MLK Day off. Nice right? Oh I forgot, you had to be blac AFRICAN AMERICAN to have the day off. Dead serious. So all us whities and Asians were just screwed. Um reverse racism much?

Soooo I don't mean to belittle the atrocities suffered long ago but I do feel the need to point something out.  I'm at work.... against my will.... confined in a small area... unable to leave or move freely. Does this sound at all familiar???????

Just sayin...

Friday, January 14, 2011

A Girl Needs Her Gay

For those of you poor souls out there who don't have a flamboyantly homosexual boss, I feel for you. I have had the misfortune of working for the heteros more times than I would like to admit. The straights are the worst. This is the first time I've had the extreme pleasure of working for a gay man. He is the light of my life day. Whenever the owner of the company gets all in my grill (which happens to be daily) over making sales calls, booking more interviews, or whatever has her panties in a twist that day- James always has my back. And not just in a "well I'll go talk to HR" kind of way- but in a "ahhh hell no she didn't say that to you" and then storms into her office to tell her off kind of way. My little gay man heart skips a beat every time he comes to my rescue. I love him. I want to hang out with him on the weekends and watch Jersey Shore marathons (it's his favorite show btw) while sipping strawberry margaritas and painting eachothers' nails. I want to go to Fire Island and Palm Springs so we can let loose and be all kinds of gay. In other words, he makes me want to be a gayer man.

Here are some highlights of James' amazingness: The other day our division received a scathing email from a very big client of ours. It ripped us a new one saying how he plans to take his business elsewhere because we weren't able to fill a position he needed, we suck, etc. I was horrified that James would be angry that a client was so upset and we would have to kiss the clients ass to get him back. I was wrong. James wrote us a long email about how this guy is a joke and we don't specialize in the type of position he wanted us to fill (I work for a staffing agency PS). This is the kicker... James ended the email by saying "don't worry guys you're doing a great job. He just sucks so POO POO to him." HA!! I peed a little when I saw this. This is an email I got today from him:

No L’s


All the L’s are done……

I literally have no idea what he's talking about. But all I know is that I love him. For those of you who are unhappy in your jobs ask yourself this- is your boss a raging hetero? because if he/she is you need to get out now. As in get yourself all dolled up in some hot pants and some sexy heels, put on the makeup (regardless of your gender), pound some shots, get yourself to West Hollywood and start NETWORKING SOME GAYS. It's the only way to survive this corporate bullshit.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Midnight Erotica

As much as I hate this expression I have to use it. I have a violent case of the Mondays. I'm honestly crippled with depression today because A- I know I won't be jogging on the beach anytime soon B-I'm not allowed to drink pomosas before noon whilst working and C- the owner is all over me to make sales calls.

Have I mentioned I hate sales calls? Well I do. I reallllly fucking hate them. I'd rather spend a week in a jail cell alone with J-Lo, Mark McGrath, and Antoine Dodson than make 1 cold call. Just explain this to me. Why would I want to call people while they're working, interrupt their work, and try to get them to do things they don't want to do? Not my idea of a good time. In fact, it's my own personal nightmare. These days my dreams consist of incredibly-erotic-dirty-novel-status-sex-dreams OR thrashing-in-my-sleep-wake-up-with-the-sweats-because-I'm-having-a-panic-attack dreams. Guess which one I prefer? Every cold call nightmare is then in essence robbing me of a night of erotica. Fuck that. Cold calls are ruining my life. Sue (the owner of the company) is on my ass everyday to make more and more calls. She makes me send in a list of the calls I make daily. Without fail, she always has something bitchy to say back. My anxiety level is at a code red. All because of cold calls. Pitiful. Last week was my first week of calls. Here are the responses Sue sent me regarding my daily call log:

We can try and meet tomorrow for a bit. Would like to see a few more calls made. How many are you making?

Stay on top of all the ones who tell you they have another agency. Also how many actually calls today?

Many of these names are not spelled correctly so always be ACCURATE

Ouch. Maybe I am dyslexic? But did anyone notice how she said "how many actually calls today"? Yeah.... not so accurate, are we? I'm now at a point where I can't figure out if I want to get fired or not. This job is obviously instrumental in our Great Escape  and.... you know... survival. But at what cost????? My midnight erotica? Ah hell no. Universe, can you hear me? Do you read my blog? All I need is about $30K to pick up and go. PLEASE send me $30K. I promise I will do good things in this world. Perhaps I should consider cold calling random people and asking for money? Eh?